By Sheikh Muhammad Turi
Let me carry on by acknowledging a number of circumstantial oversights in the last edition especially where the word brevity was used in place of bravery. However, going by the content, the intended point was very clear.
I feel duty – bound to give this explanatory piece on shiism just as I urge other brothers to do the same because it is very clear that we are grossly misrepresented by opposition which is to our great disadvantage. Evidently, this is very necessary for a number of reasons:
Firstly, it benefits the teeming population sincerely wishing to know the facts about the creed but continuously misled by lies and baseless allegations. Secondly, it can, to a great extent help in deterring the fruitless efforts of the opposition who are bent on blind attacks on the creed through massive propaganda. And thirdly, it can encourage the on lookers in making a judicious comparative analysis between the two on the principle of justice and unity.
WHO ARE THE SHIITES?
Questions like what is shiism? How did it come about? What does it aim to achieve and in what ways does it differ as a religious creed with that of Ahlus sunnah wal jama’ah? And how true are the surprising stories spread about them in our social media? These and many more are commonly heard in our society.
For the fast forty years very few knew about Shiism. So most of what was disseminated about the creed was largely rumors. The rumor was deliberately and ignorantly mongered by different categories of people.
Realistically, the comprehension of the people on the creed has been dynamic especially in the recent past. But in order to put our record straight, we will flash back at the rumored propaganda designed by the opposition to achieve their desired goal.
Based on my understanding, I can categorize the allegations leveled against the shi’ah as ancient and recent which could be dynamically observed. I will lead our esteemed readers to a short glance on these allegations as I will galvanize the same later in some topics to come. The first category has greatly diminished now and comprised of allegations relating to revelation, the holy Qur’an and Abdullahi bn Sabah.
1. JIBREEL’S MISTAKE?
Most prevalent allegation in the last decades was that the shi’ah presumed prophet hood and messenger ship of Ali son of Abi Talib instead of Prophet Muhammad (s). According to these proponents, the shi’a believed that Ali was more qualified and entitled to messenger ship than the noble prophet. So when Angel Jibreel, head of all angels descended to deliver the message to Ali, he met him together with the prophet (s). However, due to their indistinguishable similarities, Jibreel could not differentiate the two and instead of delivering to Ali he mistakenly delivered to the prophet (s)!
This is very unscientific but it was really spread in the past. If we assume Jibreel had made a mistake could Allah make the same? What a fairy tale!
The shi’ah is very innocent of this allegation. We believe in the infallibility of our Imams not to talk of archangel Jibreel (as). Therefore, he could not make a mistake at all.
If all angels are absolutely obedient to Allah the most high, and they never disobey His commands. What of their leader Jibreel? Above all in his respect the creator said “With authority there, (and) faithful to his trust” Q81:21
No doubt, this was simply a lie among the ancient spread against the shi’ah which are hardly heard of now. If it were a doctrine in shiism, the Shi’ah is not afraid of anybody. So they can speak and depend their creed any where anytime.
2. THE SHI’ITE QUR’AN?
Another well – circulated allegation against the shi’ah is on the holy Qur’an. The proponents criticize the shi’ah of having their own copy of the holy Qur’an different from the known prophetic Qur’an. What a shame!
Several books were authored by Wahhabis on this subject. And many people answering sheikhs in Nigeria have translated such books into various languages and were distributed across free of charge. They said the Shiite Qur’an has additions which they sometimes portray as acknowledging the son ship in law of Imam Ali bn Abi Talib to the noble prophet (s). The surprising thing about this propaganda is their disregard to the sayings of Allah in different parts of the holy Qur’an regarding this demonstrable message.
Allah said “No falsehood can approach it From before or behind it: it is sent down by One Full of wisdom, Worthy of all praise” Q39:42
“Say if the whole Of mankind and Jinns Were to gather together To produce the like Of this Qur’an, They could not produce the like thereof, even if They backed up each other With help and support” Q17:88
“We have, without doubt, Sent down the message; And We will assuredly Guard it (from corruption). Q15:9
If the above were just few examples of the verses speaking on the protection of the Qur’an that Allah has taken upon Himself, who is there than can fabricate another Qur’an or create confusion concerning this message of Allah the most high? And as the eloquent – Arabs blessed with wisdom were challenged to produce just a single verse similar to the holy Qur’an and could not, how much more of the non – Arabs? No doubt, it was a lie the shi’ah does not have its Qur’an at all.
So the Qur’an in circulation at the time of the noble messenger (s) is the same in circulation with the shi’ah. Many Muslims across the world were opportuned to visit Iraq and Iran and no one has noticed any copy of the Qur’an different from the only one we know! In fact the late Ayatollah Khomeini on several anniversaries of Islamic revolution in Iran has gifted copies of the noble Qur’an to the world dignitaries which is in no way different from the known Qur’an.
Then from where is the Shi’ite Qur’an? Whoever believes in such a blatant lie, he or she disbelieves in the verses of the holy Qur’an where Allah promised to protect His book from all sorts of corruption to the end of time.
3.THE SHI’AH AND IBN SABAH?
The story of Abdullahi Ibn Sabah is another well – circulated allegation about shiism. Who was Abdullahi ibn Sabah? From where did he come and what was his relationship with the establishment and continuity of shiism?
From the most circulating narration, they said Ibn Sabah came to Medina and presumed to embrace Islam during Umar’s caliphate. He was a Jew who did not accept the religion with sincerity and therefore a hypocrite!
This hypocrite was the person that moved far and near for the establishment of shiism. So Abdullah Ibn Sabah was the founder of shiism which they sometimes refer as a religion of its own different from Islam. This is the most prevalent version of all the Saudi authors on what they simply refer as the genesis of shiism.
However, the story of Ibn Sabah is related by Saif Bn Umar from a single source of al – Umam wal Muluk by Imam al – Tabary. The narration has been very questionable and the Saif himself was criticized by many incluiding the Tabary himself, Ibn Hajr and Imam al – Zahabi among others. While some called him a liar, others regarded him as a calumnist.
On the other hand, Allamah Sayyid Murtadha al – Askary has authored an extensively – researched book particularly on this subject – A’ra wa asda haula Abdullah bn Sabah wa riwa’yat Saif. In addition to that, he has also authored “mi’a wa khamsuuna sahabiyun mukhtaliq” – A hundred and fifty fabricated companions comprising of Ibn Sabah himself all of whom have never existed at all!
Interestingly, the book has remained an educational and scholarly challenge to the Muslim world and could not be refuted for the past three decades!
4.VITUPERATION OF THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS?
Vituperation of the prophet’s wives and companions is of the recent and most circulated allegations now against shi’ah. They speak and write on this to the best of their ability. I know of a person in our town who claims scholarship that encourage his students to disseminate all sorts of propaganda against the shi’ah assuring them of no implication provided it can distance the people from shiism.
Abusing the companions of the prophet (s) especially Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman and Abu Hurairah and prophet’s wives, mothers of the believers like A’isha and Hafsat is the most widespread allegation generally propagated against shi’ah.
However, as I have been saying the proponents think of success in undermining the shi’a through this scandal contemplating other believers to blindly accept their claims against shi’a.
Allah says “o you who believe! Stand out firmly For Allah, as witnesses To fair dealing, and let not The hatred of others To you make you swerve To wrong and depart from Justice. Be just: that is Next to piety: and fear Allah. For Allah is well – acquainted With all ye do” Ma’ida: 8
So Muslims should be judicious in the cause of their relations with all including the shi’ah. To the best of my believe and knowledge, the shi’ah has the greatest regard not only to the noble prophet (s), his pure household and exulted companions but to all signs of this honorable religion!
Let us briefly look at few instances at both international and local levels where the noble messenger of Allah, his companions and respected wives were blasphemed and analyze the response of all Muslims, Shia and the Sunna claimants as a lesson!
May 23, 2014