Chapter Twenty-one: The Emissaries who communicated between the Shia and the Qaim during the minor occultation
قَدْ رُوِيَ فِي بَعْضِ الْأَخْبَارِ أَنَّهُمْ قَالُوا خُدَّامُنَا وَ قُوَّامُنَا شِرَارُ خَلْقِ اللَّهِ وَ هَذَا لَيْسَ عَلَى عُمُومِهِ وَ إِنَّمَا قَالُوا لِأَنَّ فِيهِمْ مَنْ غَيَّرَ وَ بَدَلَ وَ خَانَ عَلَى مَا سَنَذْكُرُهُ
1- Ghaibat Tusi: Shaykh Tusi has recorded in certain narrations that they have said:
“Our servants and our caretakers are the most evil of Allah’s creation.” This statement is not meant to be general and all inclusive. They have said so because these individuals included non-Shia and traitors, as we shall mention.
Muhammad Ibne Abdullah Ibne Ja’far Himyari narrates on the authority of his father from Muhammad Ibne Salih Hamadani, saying, I wrote to the Master of the Age (a.s.) that my family was abusing me and were rebuking me with the tradition that has been narrated from your forefathers, peace be with them, “Our servants and our caretakers are the most evil of Allah’s creation.”
The holy Imam wrote back, “Do you not read what Allah, the High, has said:
وَجَعَلْنَا بَيْنَهُمْ وَبَيْنَ الْقُرَى الَّتِي بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا قُرًى ظَاهِرَةً
“And We made between them and the towns which We had blessed (other) towns to be easily seen…” (Surah Saba 34:18)
Saduq inIkmaaluddin has narrated this report from the same chain of narrators and then he says: Abdullah Ibne Ja’far said: Ali Ibne Muhammad Kulaini narrated this hadith on the authority of Muhammad Ibne Salih from the Master of the Age (a.s.).
(1) Abu Amr Uthman bin Saeed Amri
The author says: Then Shaykh Tusi mentions some of the companions of the Imams, Divine bliss be for them, who have been praised. And then he says, Of the emissaries in the time of the minor occultation, who have been extolled, their first one is the person appointed by Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Askari and his son Abu Muhammad Hasan Ibne Ali Ibne Muhammad, peace be with them all. He was the reliable scholar Abu Amr Uthman Ibne Saeed Amari and was from the tribe of Asad. He has been called Amari on the virtue of the narration of Abu Nasr Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad Ibne Ahmad Katib Ibne binte Abi Ja’far Amari saying, He was from the Asad, and is known by his grandfather’s name and therefore, it is said Amari.
A group of the Shia has said: Abu Muhammad Hasan Ibne Ali (a.s.) said: “The names Ibne Uthman and Abu Amr shall not gather in one man,” and ordered him to break his patronymic, so he was called Amari. He is also
called Askari, because he was from the Askar of Samarrah. He is also called Samman, because he used to trade in grease in order to conceal his task.
When the Shia carried their religious dues to Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.), they would send it to Abu Amr, which he would place in containers that were used for grease and carry them to Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) because of Taqayyah and fear.
A group of scholars narrated to me from Abu Muhammad Harun Ibne Musa from Abu Ali Muhammad Ibne Himam Iskafi, who said Ahmad Ibne Ishaq Ibne Saad Qummi narrated to us, saying, I entered on a certain day upon Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad, peace be with him (a.s.). I said: “O my master, many a time, I go away and then come to your vicinity, yet I am still not able to find access to you every time I come nearby. So whose word should we accept and whose order should we obey?”
The Imam (a.s.) said: “This is Abu Amr. He is trustworthy and honest. He is the trustworthy man of the past and my man of trust in my lifetime and after my death. Whatever he says to you, he says it from us; whatever he delivers to you, he does so from me.”
Abu Muhammad Harun said: Abu Ali said: Abul Abbas Himyari said: We would often discuss this narration and extol the eminence of Abu Amr.
A group of scholars narrated to us from Abu Muhammad Harun from Muhammad Ibne Himam from Abdullah Ibne Ja’far, saying, On a certain year after the demise of Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.), we performed Hajj. I went to Ahmad Ibne Ishaq at Medina and saw Abu Amr with him. I said: “This Shaykh,” pointing to Ahmad Ibne Ishaq, “and he is a trustworthy and admirable man before us, has narrated to us,” such and such. I narrated to him all of the narrative, which we have mentioned above on the account of the eminent position of Abu Amr. I said: “You are now someone whose word and truthfulness is not dubitable. I beseech you for the sake of Allah and the sake of the two Imams who have declared you trustworthy, have you seen the son of Abu Muhammad who is the Master of the Age?”
He wept and then said: “You cannot inform anyone with this regard so long as I am alive.” I said: “Sure so.” He said: “I have verily seen him and his neck is like this.” He wanted to say that he has the most beautiful and wholesome of the necks. I asked, “And the name?” He said: “You have been all forbidden from that.”
Abul Abbas Ahmad Ibne Ali Ibne Nuh Abul Abbas Sairafi narrates through the chain of narration from Muhammad Ibne Ismail Hasin and Ali Ibne Abdullah Hasin, that the two men said: We entered upon Abu Muhammad Hasan (a.s.) at Samarrah. There were a group of his devotees and his Shia in his presence when Badr, his servant, entered and said: “O my master, there is a nation, streaked in dust and with uncombed hair, at the gate.” The Imam said: “They are a group of our Shia from Yemen.”
The narration is long. The two narrators say, Hasan (a.s.) said to Badr, “Go and bring Uthman Ibne Saeed Amari to us.” It was not long that Uthman entered. Our master Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) said to him, “O Uthman go, for you are the representative and the reliable and entrusted man with respect to God’s money. Take from these Yemeni gentlemen the
religious dues they have brought.” Then the two narrators continue their narrative until they say:
Then we all said: “O our Master, by Allah, Uthman is of the best of your Shia. You increased our knowledge with respect to his position in your service and that he is your representative and your reliable man in God’s money.”
He said: “Yes, and bear witness for me that Uthman Ibne Saeed Amari is my representative and that his son Muhammad is the representative of my son, your Mahdi.”
It is mentioned inGhaibat of Shaykh Tusi that Abu Nasr, who is the great grandson of Amari’s daughter, narrates through his chain of narration that when Hasan Ibne Ali (a.s.) passed away, Uthman Ibne Saeed attended his burial bath and served in all of his rituals of shrouding, scenting, and burial. He was ordered to be the caretaker in the superficies, and superficies cannot be rejected but through the rejection of the reality of things because of their appearances.
The letters of the Master of the Affair (a.s.) to his Shia and the intimate devotees of his father, Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.), containing orders and prohibitions and answers to their queries when they needed to pose questions, would come through Uthman Ibne Saeed and his son Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman. These letters were in the same handwriting that used to come in the lifetime of Hasan (a.s.). The Shia continued to recognize him as a righteous man until Uthman Ibne Saeed died and his son Abu Ja’far gave him the burial bath and took over the task.
Then onwards, all undertakings were accomplished through Abu Ja’far and the Shia remained unanimous on his uprightness and trustworthiness and honesty due to the narration recorded during his father’s lifetime that enunciated his honesty and uprightness and commanded the Shia to refer to him in the lifetime of Hasan (a.s.) as well as after his death.
Ahmad Ibne Ali Ibne Nuh Abul Abbas Sairafi narrates on the authority of a number of named narrators in a long well-known narration, in which they all say, We gathered before Abu Muhammad Hasan Ibne Ali (a.s.) to ask him about the Hujjah after him. There were forty men in the gathering.
Uthman Ibne Saeed Ibne Amr Amari rose and said: “O son of the Messenger of Allah, I want to ask you about a great subject which you know better than me.” “Sit down, O Uthman,” he told him. Uthman rose to leave. The Imam said: “No one leaves.” None of us left. It was an hour that the Imam called Uthman. Uthman who rose on his feet. The Imam said: “Shall I inform you why you have come?” They said: “Yes, O son of the Messenger of Allah.” He said: “You have come to ask me about the Hujjah after me.” They said: “Yes.”
Suddenly, there came a boy, as he were a piece of the moon and more similar to Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) than all the people. The Imam said: ‘This is your Imam after me and my caliph over you. Obey him and do not disperse after me, lest you will perish in your religions. Behold, you will not see him after this day of yours until ages pass. So, accept from Uthman what he says and obey his order and accept his word, because he is the caliph of your Imam and the affairs are in his hands.”
Abu Nasr Hibtullah Ibne Muhammad bin Ahmad says in a narration, The tomb of Uthman Ibne Saeed is on the western side of Baghdad in the street of the turf. It is in the beginning of the famous place in the gate known as the gate of Hubla, in the gate of the Mosque on the right side. The tomb is in the very Qibla of the mosque.
Shaykh Tusi has said: I saw his tomb in the said spot. A wall had been erected at its face at which the mosque’s mihrab stood. On its side is a gate that goes to the tomb in a dark and small room. We used to enter that room and visit him every month. Such was my practice from the time of my arrival at Baghdad, which was at the year four hundred and eight, until the year four hundred and thirty and something. Then the Chief Abu Mansur Muhammad Ibne Faraj tore down that wall and manifested the tomb to view and built a sepulcher over it. It is under a ceiling and anyone who desires can enter and visit it.
The neighbors seek blessing by visiting him and believe that he is a virtuous man. They often say he is the son of the woman who raised the Doyen of the Martyrs Husain (a.s.) and do not know the reality about him. This condition continues until this day of ours, which is the year four hundred and forty seven.
(2) Abu Ja’far Muhammad bin Uthman bin Saeed Amari
When Abu Amr Uthman Ibne Saeed died, his son Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman stood in his place, on the virtue of the clear instructions of Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) and the instructions of his father about the time of the Qaim (a.s.).
A group of scholars narrated to me on the authority of Abul Hasan Muhammad Ibne Ahmad Ibne Dawood Qummi and Ibne Qulawayh from Saad Ibne Abdullah, saying, the Veracious Shaykh Ahmad Ibne Ishaq Ibne Saad Ashari narrated to us, and then he mentions the account which we brought earlier. A group of our scholars narrated to me from all of the eminent personages of Abul Qasim Ja’far Ibne Muhammad Ibne Qulawayh and Abu Ghalib Razi and Abu Muhammad Talakbari, who all narrate from Muhammad Ibne Yaqub Kulaini, who narrates from Muhammad Ibne Abdullah and Muhammad Ibne Yahya, who narrate from Abdullah Ibne Ja’far Himyari, saying, I and Shaykh Abu Amr were with Ahmad Ibne Ishaq Ashari Qummi. Ahmad Ibne Ishaq made a gesture to me to ask him about the successor. So, I asked him, “O Abu Amr, I want to ask you a question; however, I am not unsure about what I want to ask you, for my faith and my belief is that the earth does not remain without a Hujjah, unless it is forty days prior to Judgment Day. And when that happens, the Hujjah is raised up and the gateway of repentance is shut. And it will not benefit any soul has it not already believed and earned good in its belief. They are the wicked of God’s creation and they are the ones that Judgment Day shall stand against them.
However, I desire to increase my certitude, as Ibrahim (a.s.) asked his Lord to show him how He brings the dead back to life. He said: ‘Do you believe not? He said: Indeed; rather, for my heart to satisfy.
Abu Ali Ahmad Ibne Ishaq has narrated to me from Abul Hasan (a.s.). He said: I asked the Imam, ‘With who should I transact and from whom
should I learn and whose word should I accept?’ The Imam said to him, Amari is my trustworthy man. Whatever he delivers to you, he does so from me. And whatever he says to you, he does so from me. So listen to him and obey him, for he is a trustworthy and honest man.’
Also Abu Ali narrated to me that he asked Abu Muhammad Hasan Ibne Ali the same question and the Imam said to him, Amari and his son are two trustworthy men. Whatever they deliver to you, they deliver from me; and whatever they say to you, they say from me. Listen to them and obey them, for they are two trustworthy and honest men.’ These are the words of two Imams of the past about you.”
Abu Amr fell into prostration and tears rolled down from his eyes and then he said: “Ask.” I said to him, “Have you seen the successor of Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.)?” He said: “Yes, by Allah. And his neck is like this,” and he gestured. I said to him, “I have one more question.” He said: “Bring it forth.” I said: “His name?” He said: “That is forbidden to you to ask about. I am not saying this from myself, nor am I permitted to allow or disallow.
Rather, this prohibition is from the Imam himself (a.s.). The scepter’s impression is that Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) passed away and did not leave a son behind and that his bequeathals were divided and taken over by people who were not entitled to do that. He bore patience on that. There is his household, wandering about and there is no one who has the courage to recognize them or offer them something. Should the name come out, search will be on. So fear God and hold back from that.”
Kulaini said: A Shaykh from our scholars, that my memory fails his name, said that Abu Amr was asked in the presence of Ahmad Ibne Ishaq the same question and he gave a similar answer. A group of our scholars narrated to us from Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Husain Ibne Musa Ibne Babawayh from Ahmad Ibne Harun Fami, saying, Muhammad Ibne Abdullah Ibne Ja’far Himyari narrated to us from his father Abdullah Ibne Ja’far, saying, A holy letter came out to Shaykh Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman Ibne Saeed Amari, may Allah sanctify his soul, consoling him for his father (a.s.). One section of the letter read:
“We belong to Allah and to Him do we return, submit to His command and are pleased with His destiny. Your father lived fortuitously and died praiseworthy. May Allah have mercy on him and take him to the company of his Imams and his masters, peace be with them. He was always dedicated to their cause and diligent in what would take him near Allah, the Exalted, and the Imams. May Allah beautify his visage and forgive him his shortcomings.”
Another segment of the letter reads: “May Allah increase upon you the reward and may He adorn for you the grieving. This tragedy has struck you and has struck us. His separation has left you in fright and has left us in fright. May Allah please him in his eternal abode. Of the best of his fortuitousness was that Allah gave him a son like you, to stay behind him and take his place and perform his task and seek mercy for him.
I say, All praise belongs to Allah, for breaths are sacred at your place and at what Allah has given you and placed before you. May Allah help you and
strengthen you and empower you and grant you success. May He be your Guardian and Protector and Shepherd.”
2- Ghaibat Tusi: A group of our scholars narrated to me from Harun Ibne Musa from Muhammad Ibne Himam, saying:
Abdullah Ibne Ja’far Himyari said to me, When Abu Amr (a.s.) passed away, letters continued to come to us with the same handwriting through which we used to receive letters on the virtue of Abu Ja’far (a.s.) taking his father’s place.
On the authority of the same chain of narration from Muhammad Ibne Himam, who says, Muhammad Ibne Hemawayh Ibne Abdul Aziz Razi recounted to me in the year two hundred and eighty that Muhammad Ibne Ibrahim Ibne Mahziyar Ahwazi recounted that a letter came to him after the demise of Abu Amr that stated, “And his son, may Allah protect him, has always been our man of trust during the lifetime of his father (a.s.). He is to us like his father and in his place. He orders to our command and according to our command he acts. May Allah cherish him. Pay heed to his word. And let this assertion of ours be known.”
A group narrated to us from Abul Qasim Ja’far Ibne Muhammad Ibne Qulawayh and Abu Ghalib Razi and Abu Muhammad Talakbari, all of whom narrate from Muhammad Ibne Yaqub on the authority of Ishaq Ibne Yaqub, who says, I asked Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari to deliver a letter of mine, in which I had asked about some queries that had baffled me.
The answer with the hand writing of our Master the Patron of the House came that stated, “As for Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari, may Allah be pleased with him and his father before him: he has my full trust and his letter is my letter.
3- Ghaibat Tusi: It is narrated from Abul Abbas that: Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad Ibne binte Umme Kulthum binte Abi Ja’far Amari narrated to me from his teachers, who said:
The Shia always believed in the uprightness of Uthman Ibne Saeed. His son Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman performed his burial bath and took the charge and assumed leadership. The Shia were all unanimous on his uprightness and trustworthiness and honesty, due to the explicit narrations pronouncing his honesty and uprightness and commanding the people to refer to him in the lifetime of Hasan (a.s.) and after his death in the lifetime of his father Uthman Ibne Saeed.
The Shia did not dispute his uprightness nor did they doubt his honesty. The letters came out through him to the Shia in their important matters during his life. They were in the same handwriting as they were in the lifetime of his father, Uthman. The Shia did not know anyone else but him in this position. Nor did they turn to anyone else but him. Many signs and miracles of the Imam, which appeared through him, have been narrated. He spoke of the events to the Shia that increased their faith in this regard and they are well-known before the Shia. We will bring a fragment of them and will not prolong the discourse through their repetition, because this much is sufficient for the fair-minded investigator.
Ibne Nuh says: Abu Nasr Hibatullah Ibne binte Kulthum binte Abi Ja’far Amari said to me, Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari had a number of books. He had written them on the subject of fiqh on the basis of his learning from Abu Muhammad Hasan (a.s.) and the Patron (a.s.) and from his father Uthman Ibne Saeed, who had procured his knowledge from Abu Muhammad and from Ali Ibne Muhammad, peace be with them. They included books titled as The Books of Drinks. Kabira the mother of Kulthum the daughter of Abu Ja’far (a.s.) mentioned that the books reached Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh at the time of the final will to him and they remained in his possession. Abu Nasr says, I suspect she said that they reached afterwards to Abul Hasan Saymoori.
Abu Ja’far Ibne Babawayh says, Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari narrated that by Allah, the Master of this Affair attends the Hajj every year and sees the people and knows them and they see him but do not recognize him.
A number of scholars narrated to me on the authority of the named narrators from Abdullah Ibne Ja’far Himyari that he said: I asked Muhammad Ibne Uthman (a.s.) “Have you seen the Master of this Affair?” “Yes,” he said: “and my last covenant with him was at the Sacred House of God as he was saying, O Allah, fulfill to me what You promised to me.” He said: “I saw him, Divine bliss be for him, clinging to the curtains of the Kaaba in Mustajar as he was saying, O Allah, avenge Your enemies through me.”
Through the same chain of narration from the father of Muhammad Ibne Ali, who said: Ali Ibne Sulaiman al Razi recounted to us on the authority of Ali Ibne Sadaqah Qummi, who said: A letter came to Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari without any inquiry from him, and commanded him to inform the people who were inquiring about the name of the Imam to either be silent and attain Paradise or either talk and be condemned to the Fire. For if they discern the name, they will spread it, and if they discover the place, they will lead others to it.
Ibne Nuh narrates from Abu Nasr Hibtullah Ibne Muhammad, who narrates from Abu Ali Ibne Abi Jayyed Qummi, who narrates from Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Ahmad Dallal Qummi, who said: I came to Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman (a.s.) on a certain day to offer him my greetings.
He was there and in front of him was a square frame of oak and an inscriber who was inscribing on it and writing verses of Quran and the names of the Holy Imams on its sides. I asked him, “What is this tablet for, my master?”
He said: “This is for my grave; it will be in it.” He said either, “I will be placed over it” or, “I will be raised over it.” Then he said: “I am done with it, and every day, I descend into it and recite a part of Quran and come back.”
Abu Ali Ibne Abi Jayyed Qummi says, I also think he said: Abu Ja’far Ibne Uthman (a.s.) took my hand and showed his tomb to me. He told me that on such and such day of the such and such month of the such and such year, “I will go towards Allah, the Exalted, and will be buried here, and this frame of oak will be with me.”
When I came out from his place, all of his providential sayings came true. I was constantly watching his state. It was not long that he became ill and then he died on the very day of the month and the year he had confided in me; and he was buried there.
Abu Nasr Hibatullah says, I heard this narration from someone other than Abu Ali. Also Umme Kulthum binte Abi Ja’far and another group of scholars from Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Husain (a.s.) narrated to me on the authority of Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Aswad Qummi that Abu Ja’far Amari dug a tomb for himself and leveled it with a tablet. I inquired about it. He mentioned some reasons to the people. Then I asked him about it. He said: “I have been ordered to gather my affairs.” He died two months after that. May Allah be pleased with him and may He please him.
4- Ghaibat Tusi: It is narrated from Abu Nasr Hibatullah that:
I found in the handwriting of Abu Ghalib Razi (a.s.) that Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari died at the end of Jamadiul Awwal of the year three hundred and five.
Abu Nasr Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad Ibne Ahmad has mentioned that Abu Ja’far Amari died in the year three hundred and four and that he undertook this duty for about fifty years. People would carry their religious dues to him and letters to them would come with the same handwriting that they came during the lifetime of Hasan (a.s.) addressing their important and vital issues of religious as well as worldly life and responding their queries with astonishing answers. May Allah please him and He be pleased with him.
Abu Nasr Ibne Hibatullah says: Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman’s grave is near that of his mother in the street of gate of Kufa in the place where his houses and quarters were, which is now in the middle of the desert. May Allah sanctify his soul.
(3) Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh Naubakhti
Shaykh Tusi has mentioned inGhaibat that Husain Ibne Ibrahim Qummi narrates through the named chain of narration on the authority of Abu Abdullah Ja’far Ibne Muhammad Madayani, known as Ibne Qazda in Baghdad, who said: It was my conduct that when I carried religious dues that were in my hands to Shaykh Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari to say to him something no one else said its like to him, This money, the amount of which is such and such, belongs to the Imam (a.s.). He would say, “Yes. Leave it.” I would return and say to him, “Say to me it belongs to the Imam.” And he would say, “Yes, it belongs to the Imam (a.s.).” And then he would take it.
The last time I saw him, I went to him with four hundred dinars. I talked to him as my custom was. He said to me, “Take it to Husain Ibne Ruh.”
I paused and said: “You will take it from me like every time.” He turned me down like a stranger to my words and said: “Go, may Allah keep you well, and give them to Husain Ibne Ruh.” As I saw anger on his face, I moved and climbed over my courser. I had gone some ways that I had doubts, so I returned and knocked on the door.
The servant came to me and asked, “Who are you?” I said my name. He went inside and sought permission for my entry and came back, turning me down. I said to him, “Go and ask for permission for me. I must see him.” He went inside and told him about my return. He had gone to the women’s quarters. He came out and sat over a bunk, while his feet were on the ground. He was wearing two slippers, half of beauty of which were due to good looks of his feet.
He said to me, “What prompted you to come back? And why did you not do what I told you to do?” I said: “I did not dare do what you asked me to do.” He called on me as he was angry, “Go, may Allah keep you well, for I have raised Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh to my position and have assigned him my chair.” I asked, “By the order of the Imam?” He said: “Go, may Allah keep you well. It is as I told you.” I did not have any option but to leave. I went to Abul Qasim Ibne Ruh. He was in a narrow house. I related to him what had happened. He was pleased and thanked Allah, the Exalted. I gave him the dinars. I kept submitting all of my religious dues to him after that.
On the authority of Ja’far Ibne Ahmad Ibne Matil Qummi, Muhammad Ibne Uthman Abu Ja’far Amari had about ten people in Baghdad who were his deputies. Abul Qasim Ibne Ruh was one of them.
All of them were closer to him than Abul Qasim Ibne Ruh so much so that when he needed something or had a task, he would have it fulfilled through someone else, because Ibne Ruh did not have that kind of proximity to him. When Abu Ja’far (a.s.) was to pass away, the choice was his and he had the authority to make his final will.
Our Shaykhs were saying, We did not have any doubt that if something should happen to Abu Ja’far, no one will take his place but Ja’far Ibne Ahmad Ibne Matil or his father, for he was Abu Ja’far’s confidant and was at his house mostly. It was known that towards the end of his life, Abu Ja’far did not eat any food that was not prepared at the house of Ja’far Ibne Ahmad Ibne Matil and his father, due to an incident that had occurred. His food was at the house of Ja’far and his father.
Our scholars did not doubt that if something happened, the position will be handed to him. When he passed away and Abul Qasim was selected, they submitted to him and did not reject him. They were all with him and at his service just as they were with Abu Ja’far (a.s.). Ja’far Ibne Ahmad Ibne Matil continued to serve Abul Qasim as his deputy until his death as he served Abu Ja’far Amari. Anyone who would question Abul Qasim questions Abu Ja’far and questions the Hujjah (a.s.).
A group of scholars narrated to us from Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Husain Ibne Babawayh, saying Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ali Aswad said: I used to carry religious dues procured as waqf to Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari, which he would take from me. One day, I took some money to him. It was during his last days, two or three years prior to his demise. He ordered me to give them to Abul Qasim Ruh (a.s.).
I always asked Abul Qasim for receipts, so he complained to Abu Ja’far (a.s.) about it, and he ordered me, “Do not insist on receipts and everything
that reaches Abul Qasim is as it reaches me.” After that, I used to take the dues to him and would not ask for receipts.
5- Ghaibat Tusi: It is narrated through the same chain of narrators from Muhammad bin Ali bin Husain from Ali bin Muhammad bin Matil from his uncle, Ja’far Ibne Ahmad Ibne Matil that he said:
When death approached Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari, I was sitting near his head and was asking him questions and talking to him. Abul Qasim Ibne Ruh was near his feet. He turned to me and then said: “I have been ordered to confide my final will to Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh.” I rose from his overhead and took Abul Qasim’s hand and sat him on my seat and sat myself at his feet.
6- Ghaibat Tusi: It is narrated from Ibne Nuh that:
Abu Abdullah Husain Ibne Ali Ibne Babawayh came to us in Basra in the month of Rabiul Awwal of the year three hundred and seventy eight. He said: I heard the Alawi lady of Saffar and Husain Ibne Ahmad Ibne Idris mentioning the following narrative that they were present at Baghdad at that year and witnessed that.
Also a group narrated to us on the authority of Abu Muhammad Harun Ibne Musa, saying, Narrated to me Abu Ali Muhammad Ibne Humam (a.s.) that Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman Amari, may Allah sanctify his soul, called us before his demise. We were the elite of the Shia and senior members of the congregation. He said to us, “If the incident of death befalls me, the command is with Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh Naubakhti. I have been ordered to place him in my position after me. Refer to him and depend on him in your affairs,”
Husain Ibne Ibrahim narrated to me through the named chain of narration on the authority of Abu Ahmad Ibne Ibrahim and my uncle, Abu Ja’far Abdullah Ibne Ibrahim and others that when the condition of Abu Ja’far Amari worsened, he gathered a group of the personages of the Shia. There was Abu Ali Ibne Himam; there was Abu Abdullah Ibne Muhammad Katib; there was Abu Abdullah Baqitani; there was Abu Sahl Ismail Ibne Ali Naubakhti; there was Abu Abdullah Ibne Wajna and other senior individuals of the denomination. They entered upon Abu Ja’far (a.s.) and said to him, “If some thing happens, who will be at your place?”
He said to them, ‘This, Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh Ibne Abi Ja’far Naubakhti will sit on my seat and will be the emissary between you and the Master of the Affair. He will be his representative and is a reliable and honest man. Refer to him in your affairs and trust him in your vital enterprises. I have been ordered to that and I conveyed the message.”
Through the same chain of narration from Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad Ibne binte Umme Kulthum binte Abi Ja’far Amari on the authority of Umme Kulthum the daughter of Abu Ja’far (a.s.): Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh was the representative of Abu Ja’far (a.s.) for good many years. He was watching over his properties and would deliver his secret messages to chiefs of the Shia. He was his intimate deputy, so much so that Abu Ja’far would
discuss with him things that happened between him and his concubines, thanks to his proximity to him and his affinity with him.
She said: He would give him every month thirty dinars as stipend for him. This was in addition to what he received from the ministers and chiefs of the Shia, such as the house of Furat and the others, due to his prestige and position and his respectability before them.
The Shia had a very majestic impression about him for his intimacy with my father and the latter’s statements before them endorsing his trustworthiness, excellence, piety, and all and other qualities that he bore from this creed.
So, the affairs were facilitated for him during the lifetime of my father until the final will explicitly pronounced him for that position. No one disputed his authority and no one doubted it, except someone who must have been ignorant about my father first. Besides, I do not know anyone from the Shia who has questioned his position. Hibatullah says, I heard this from many members from the Naubakht, such as Abu Husain Ibne Kibriya and others.
A number of scholars narrated to me on the authority of Abul Abbas Ibne Nuh, saying, I discovered the first letter that came from Abul Qasim (a.s.) with the handwriting of Muhammad Ibne Nafis, amongst the things he wrote in Ahwaz:
“We know him, may Allah let him know all that is good, and His pleasure, and may He render him fortuitous by success. We came across his letter. He is our man of trust on the position he is. He is before us in the position and rank that please him. May Allah increase His favors upon him; He is the All-Mighty Guardian. And praise belongs to Allah; there is no partner for Him. And may Allah bless His Messenger Muhammad and his House and greet them many greetings.” This letter arrived on the Sunday, six nights left from the Shawwal of the year three hundred and five.
The author says: Shaykh Tusi then chronicles the letters that came to Himyari, which we have brought in the section of the letters. Then he says, Abul Qasim (a.s.) was of the wisest of all people, before friend and foe. He observed Taqayyah. Abu Nasr Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad says, Each one, Abu Abdullah Ibne Ghalib and Abul Hasan Ibne Abi Tayyib said: I did not see anyone wiser than Shaykh Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh. I saw him one day in the house of Ibne Yasar. He had a great position before the Sayyid and the caliph. The Ahle Sunnat of the Muslims also revered him. Abul Qasim attended that place due to Taqayyah and fear. I remember him. Two men were arguing; one was claiming that Abu Bakr was the best of the people after the Messenger of Allah (a.s.) and then Umar and then Ali; while the other contended that Ali was better than Umar. Their debate took long, so Abul Qasim (a.s.) said: “What the companions are unanimous upon is that the Siddiq comes first, then after him the Farooq, and then after him Uthman, and then Ali, the Successor. Narrators of traditions uphold this. This is the correct belief before us.” Everyone who was there was perplexed from these words. Members of the Ahle Sunnat were raising him over their heads from gaiety and were praying for him and were cursing those who were “accusing him to be a Rafidi.” Laughter was all the while
overwhelming me. I tried to withhold it and control myself from laughing by putting my sleeve into my mouth. But then I feared that they will discern who I am, so I left. The Shaykh looked at me and noticed that.
When I arrived at my house, there was a knock on the door. I came out and saw Abul Qasim Ibne Ruh was on his mule. He had come to me on his way to his house. He said: “Abdullah, may Allah do you favors, why were you laughing and were almost cheering me. As if what I said was not true before you.” I said: “It is true before me.” He said: “Fear God, Shaykh. I will not forgive you if you consider this word of mine great.” I said: “My master, someone who is seen to be the companion of the Imam and his representative, if he says a word as such, it is not awkward and not laughable.” He said: “By your life, if you say this again, I will desert you.” He bid me farewell and left.
Abu Nasr Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad said: Abul Hasan Ibne Kibriya Naubakhti narrated to us, saying, Shaykh Abul Qasim (a.s.) discovered that his doorman had cursed Muawiyah. He ordered that he should be turned away and removed from his post. For a long time, the doorman was asking him to reinstate him. But by Allah, he did not reinstate him to his post. Someone from the houses took him and gave him employment. All of this was due to Taqayyah.
Abu Nasr Hibatullah said: Abu Ahmad Ibne Daranawayh Abras, whose house was at the gate of stationeries said to me, I and my brothers used to go in to Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh and transact with him. He was very polite and had great manners. When we would go to him, we would be nine or ten people, nine of us against him and perhaps one of us unsure about him.
When we would leave him, nine of us would be seeking proximity to God through his love, while one us may be unsure about him. That was because he would discuss the qualities of the companions according to our narrations and narrations we did not have, which we would write down because he was a very nice person.
Husain Ibne Ibrahim narrated to me from Abul Abbas Ahmad Ibne Ali Ibne Nuh on the authority of Nasr Ibne Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad Katib Ibne binte Umme Kulthum the daughter of Abu Ja’far Amari that the tomb of Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh was in the district of the Naubakhti at the gate where the house of Ali Ibne Ahmad Naubakhti stood, who was appointed at al-Tall. There was the bridge of Shawk.
Abu Nasr said to me that Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh died in Shaban of the year three hundred and twenty six. I have narrated inordinate number of traditions from him.
In the same way the Shaykh has written inGhaibat that Abu Muhammad Muhammadi narrated to me from Abu Husain Muhammad Ibne Fadhl Ibne Thammam, saying, I heard Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ahmad Zakkuzaki say the following as he mentioned to us the bookKitab Taklif , which we believed that only people who exaggerated about the position of the Imams carried it. We heard him in the beginning when we started writing hadith say, “Everything that Ibne Abi Azaqir has inKitab Taklif , he would go to the emissary of the Imam Shaykh Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh and would
show it to him and would then narrate it. When it was authenticated, the emissary of the Imam Shaykh Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh ordered us to make copies of it. Abu Ja’far says, I wrote it into tablets with my hands.
Ibne Thammam says, I said: My master, pass it on to me so I may write it down from your handwriting. He said: I have lost it. Ibne Tammam says, Then I found its copy somewhere else and wrote it down after I had heard this story.
Abu Husain Ibne Thammam says, Abdullah Kufi, the servant of Shaykh Husain Ibne Ruh said: The Shaykh was asked about the books of Ibne Abi Azaqir after he was denounced and the Imam had cursed him. He was asked, “How are we going to act according to his books? Our houses are full of them.”
He said: “I will say to you the same thing, which Abu Muhammad Hasan Ibne Ali (a.s.) said when he was asked about the books of the progeny of Fadhdhal. They asked, ‘How should we act on their books? Our houses are full of them.’ The Imam (a.s.) said: ‘Take what they have narrated and discard what they have seen.’”
Abul Hasan Ayadi asked Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh, “Why is it abominable to have temporary marriage with a virgin?” He said: “The Prophet (s.a.) said: ‘Modesty is part of the faith.’ There are conditions between you and her and when you convince her to enjoy, she loses her modesty and faith goes away.” He asked, “If he does it, is he a fornicator?” “No,” replied the Shaykh.
It is also mentioned inGhaibat that Husain Ibne Ubaidullah narrates on the authority of Salama Ibne Muhammad, “Saying, Shaykh Husain Ibne Ruh sent the bookKitabul Tadib to Qom and wrote to a group of jurists about it and asked them to examine the book and see whether there is anything they disagree with in that book. They wrote to him, “All of it is correct and there is nothing in it to be differed with except the assertion with respect to the amount of fitra to be half of a saa (a cubic measure) of food and food before us is the like of barley from every one saa.”
Ibne Nuh says, I heard a group of our scholars at Egypt mention that Abu Sahl Naubakhti was asked about how this position reached Shaykh Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh and not him. He said: “They are more knowledgeable about who they have chosen. I am a man who meets the adversaries and have debates with them. If I should know his place, as knew Abul Qasim, and was pressed in my debates for proofs, perhaps I would lead up to his place. As for Abul Qasim, even if the Hujjah were to be under his cloak, and he were cut by scissors, he would not remove his cloak.” Or he said something like this.
Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Abul Azaqir Shalmaghani mentioned in the beginning ofKitab Ghaibat, which he had written, “As for the dispute between me and the aforesaid man, may Allah increase his success, I cannot elaborate on it except to someone this man has involved him into, because I am the victim in this and it is my right.”
In another section he says, “Someone upon him the favors of God are great, many proofs bind him and he must speak the truth in what hurts and what pleases him. It is not permissible for me, between me and Allah, but to
speak the truth about this man, despite his grave crime. This man is appointed to a duty from which the public are not allowed to turn away. Despite this, he is considered a Muslim like other Muslims.”
Abu Muhammad Harun Ibne Musa says, Abu Ali Junaid said to me, Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ali Shalmaghani said to me, “I did enter into this contest against Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh but I knew what I was entering into. We were fighting each other for this position like dogs fight each other over a corpse.” Abu Muhammad said: “The Shia did not pay attention to these words and were unanimous in praying for his chastisement and despising him.”
(4) Abul Hasan Ali bin Muhammad Saymoori - the last special deputy of Imam Zamana (a.s.)
Shaykh Tusi (q.s.) says inKitab Ghaibat : A group of scholars narrated to me on the authority of Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibne Khalilan who narrates on the authority of his great grandfather, saying, The successor Mahdi (a.s.) was born on Friday. His mother is Rayhana and she is called Narjis; and she is called Saiqal; and she is called Susan. She was called Saiqal (shining) because of the luminous pregnancy. His birth was eight days before Shaban of the year two hundred and fifty six. His representative was Uthman Ibne Saeed; and when he died, Uthman Ibne Saeed appointed Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman; and Abu Ja’far appointed Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh; and Abul Qasim appointed Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori.
And when it was the time of final departure of Samari he was asked to appoint a successor. He said: “To Allah belongs the Order and He is its Sustainer.”
The full occultation is the one that began after the demise of Saymoori.
Also the Shaykh writes in this book: Muhammad Ibne Noman Husain Ibne Ubaidullah narrated to me from Abu Abdullah Ahmad Ibne Muhammad Safwani, saying, Shaykh Abul Qasim confided his final testimony to Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori and appointed him at his duty. So, he undertook Abul Qasim’s task and when his time came, the Shia gathered before him and asked him about the representative after him and that who was going to carry his duties after his demise. He did not express anything with that regard and mentioned that he has not been ordered to appoint anyone after him for this position.
A group of scholars narrated to me from Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Husain Ibne Musa Ibne Babawayh, saying, Abul Hasan Salih Ibne Shuaib Taliqani (a.s.) narrated to us in the Dhul Qada of the year three hundred and thirty nine, saying, Narrated to us Abu Abdullah Ahmad Ibne Ibrahim Ibne Mukhallad, saying, I was present in Baghdad in the companionship of scholars of narration, may Allah bless them. Shaykh Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori, may Allah sanctify his soul, said without being questioned with this respect, “May Allah have mercy on Ali Ibne Husain Ibne Babawayh Qummi.” The scholars noted the date of that day. Later, the news came that Ibne Babawayh had passed away on that very
day. Abul Hasan Saymoori died after that in the mid-Shaban of the year three hundred and twenty nine.
7- Ghaibat Tusi: It is narrated from a group of scholars from Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Husain Ibne Babawayh that Abu Muhammad Hasan Ibne Ahmad Mukattib said:
I was in Baghdad in the year in which Shaykh Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori passed away. I went to him a few days before his demise. He brought a holy letter to the people that read as follows:
“In the name of Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate. “O Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori, may Allah enhance the reward of your brothers for you, as you shall die within six days. Tie up your affairs together and do not appoint any successor to carry out your duties after your final transfer. The full occultation has begun and there shall be no appearance but after Divine permission, high His name is, and that shall be after lengthy times, and the hardening of the hearts, and the earth’s repletion with inequity. Individuals who will claim they have seen me will come to my Shia. Behold, whoever claims seeing me before the rise of Sufyani and the call, is a liar and a slanderer. And there is no power except through Allah, the High, the Great.”
We transcribed copies of the holy letter and exited from his presence. When it was the sixth day, we returned to him as he was breathing his last. He was asked, “Who is your successor after you?” He said: “To Allah belongs the Order and He is its Sustainer.” He died. These were the last words heard from him. May Allah be pleased with him and may He please him.
8- Ghaibat Tusi: It is narrated from a group of our scholars from Abu Abdullah Husain Ibne Ali Ibne Babawayh from a group of scholars of Qom, amongst them, Ali Ibne Babawayh, narrated:
A group of scholars of Qom, amongst them Ali Ibne Ahmad Ibne Imran Saffar and his relative the lady of Saffar and Husain Ibne Ahmad Ibne Idris, said: We were present at Baghdad in the year in which Ali Ibne Husain Ibne Musa Ibne Babawayh passed away. Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori, may Allah sanctify his soul, would often ask us of the news of Ali Ibne Husain (a.s.). We would answer him that letters are coming that he is well.
This continued until came the day in which Ibne Husain died. He asked us about Ibne Husain and we gave him a similar answer. He said: “May Allah reward you in the event of the demise of Ali Ibne Husain. He just died at this hour.”
We recorded the hour and the day and the month. After seventeen or eighteen days, the news came that he had died in the very hour in which Shaykh Abul Hasan had mentioned him.
Shaykh Tusi also says: Husain Ibne Ibrahim narrated to me from Abul Abbas Ibne Nuh from Abu Nasr Hibatullah Ibne Muhammad Katib that the grave of Abul Hasan Saymoori is in the street known as Khalanji on the quarter of the gate of Muhawwal, near the banks of the stream of Abu Attab. He mentioned that he died in the year three hundred and twenty nine.
9- Ihtijaaj: The Great Gateways and the Praiseworthy Emissaries in the period of Occultation: Their first one is the trustworthy Shaykh Abu Amr Uthman Ibne Saeed Amari. Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Askari appointed him first and then his son Abu Muhammad Hasan Ibne Ali (a.s.). He undertook to carry out the services of the two Imams during their lifetimes and afterwards, undertook the affairs of the Master of the Age (a.s.). Letters of the Imam of the Age and answers to the queries of the people would come out through him. And when he died, his son Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman took his position and carried out the duties of his father in these matters. And when he died, Abul Qasim Husain Ibne Ruh from the progeny of the Naubakht undertook the responsibility. And when he died, Abul Hasan Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori undertook the task. None of them assumed this position but there was explicit instruction with respect to him from the Master of the Age, and he was appointed by his predecessor. The Shia did not accept their word except after a miraculous sign from the Master of the Affair (a.s.) was worked on the hands of each one of them, signifying the truth of their word and propriety of their intentions.
At the time of the departure of Abul Hasan Saymoori from this transient abode, he was asked about his successor. A holy letter came to them, “In the name of Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate. O Ali Ibne Muhammad Saymoori…” and the letter goes as we narrated from Shaykh Tusi (a.s.).
Special Representatives of Imam Zamana (a.s.)
10- Ghaibat Tusi: In the times of the praiseworthy emissaries, there were great many trusted individuals who received letters from the assigned emissaries. Of such individuals is Abu Husain Muhammad Ibne Ja’far Asadi.
Abu Husain Ibne Abi Jayyed Qummi narrated to us from Muhammad Ibne Hasan Ibne Walid from Muhammad Ibne Yahya Amir from Muhammad Ibne Ahmad Ibne Yahya from Salih Ibne Abi Salih, saying, Some people asked me in the year two hundred and ninety to accept religious dues. I refused that request and wrote a letter, seeking instructions. The answer came, “In Ray is Muhammad Ibne Ja’far Arabi. He should deliver it to him, for he is from our men of trust.”
Muhammad Ibne Yaqub Kulaini has narrated from Ahmad Ibne Yusuf Shashi, saying, Muhammad Ibne Hasan Katib Marwazi said to me, I sent to Hajiz Washsha two hundred dinars and wrote to the Gharim (a.s.) about it and then I received a receipt. The Imam had mentioned that I owed one thousand dinars and had sent only two hundred dinars to him.
He had said: “If you desire to act through someone, you must refer to Abu Husain Asadi at Ray.” Then after two or three days, the news of Hajiz’s death came. Ahmad Ibne Yusuf says, I informed Muhammad Ibne Hasan of Hajiz’s death. He became much grievous, so I said to him, “Grieve not, for you have two signs in the holy letter to you, one is the Imam’s statement that the money owed is one thousand dinars and the second is his
command to you to refer to Abu Husain Asadi, as he knew the imminent death of Hajiz.”
Through the same chain of narration on the authority of Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Naubakht: I intended to go for Hajj and made preparations for this purpose. A message came, “We dislike that.” I became much anxious and grievous. I wrote, “I remain submissive and obedient. However, I am sad for missing the Hajj.” A holy letter came, “Grieve not, for you will perform Hajj next year.”
Next year, I sought permission and the answer came in positive. I wrote, “I am leaving Muhammad Ibne Abbas behind, and I am certain of his piety and honesty.” The answer came, “Asadi is the best of a caretaker. If he should arrive, do not choose anyone over him.” Asadi came and I left him as my caretaker.
Muhammad Ibne Yaqub from Ali Ibne Muhammad from Muhammad Ibne Shadhan Nishapuri, saying, Five hundred dirhams short of twenty were deposited before me. I did not like it to be short of this amount, so I weighed another twenty dirhams from myself and sent the money to Asadi. I did not inform him of its shortage and that I had completed it from my own money. The answer came, “The five hundred, of which twenty were yours, reached us.” Asadi died in the Rabiul Aakhir of the year three hundred and twelve. He was honest, he never changed, and he was not mentioned disrespectfully.
Of such individuals is Ahmad Ibne Ishaq and a group in whose praise a holy letter has come. Ahmad Ibne Idris narrates from Ahmad Ibne Muhammad Ibne Isa from Abu Muhammad Razi, saying, I and Ahmad Ibne Abi Abdullah were at Askar when a messenger came from “the man” and said: “Ahmad Ibne Ishaq Ashari and Ibrahim Ibne Muhammad Hamadani and Ahmad Ibne Hamza Ibne Yas are all trusted men.”
11- Ikmaaluddin: It is narrated from Muhammad Ibne Husain Ibne Babawayh from Muhammad Himyari, from his father, from Muhammad Ibne Ja’far, from Ahmad Ibne Ibrahim, saying:
I went to Lady Hakima, the daughter of Muhammad Ibne Ali Reza (a.s.) and the sister of Abul Hasan of Askar (a.s.) in the year two hundred and sixty two. I conversed with her from behind a curtain and asked her about her religion. She named to me the Imams she followed and then she said: “And Hujjah Ibne Hasan Ibne Ali,” and mentioned his name. I said to her, “May I be your ransom, do you say this on the basis of observation or on the basis of the word of the Infallible?” She said: “Words of Abu Muhammad, which he wrote to his mother.” I asked, “Where is then the son?” She said: “He is in hiding.”
“To who are the Shia to turn for guidance?” “To the grandmother, the mother of Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.).” “Who has he emulated in assigning a woman as his deputy?” “He has emulated Husain Ibne Ali (a.s.).
Husain Ibne Ali (a.s.) assigned his sister Zainab binte Ali in the superficies. The learning and knowledge coming from Ali Ibne Husain (a.s.) were attributed to Zainab Ibne Ali in order to maintain secrecy over Ali Ibne Husain (a.s.).”
Then she said: “You are scholars of narrations. Have you not narrated that the inheritance of the ninth from the sons of Husain Ibne Ali will be divided during his lifetime.”
12- Al-Kharaij: It is narrated from Muhammad Ibne Ibrahim Ibne Mahziyar that he said:
Doubts overwhelmed me at the demise of Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.). This was while great amounts of religious dues had been deposited with my father, which he carried and boarded a ship. I went with him for company. He got fever and said to me, “My son, take me back. This is my death. And fear Allah in these assets.” He confided his final will to me and died. I said to myself that my father would not ask me to do anything wrong. I will carry these assets to Iraq and will rent a house there and will not inform anyone. If things become clear to me, I will hand them over, or else, I will spend them. So, I rented a house on the river. I had remained there but a few days when a messenger brought me a letter that was saying, O Muhammad, you have brought this and this, accounting for everything that was with me. So, I gave the assets to the messenger. I remained there a few more days and was not given any attention, which made me rather sad. Then a letter came, “‘We have placed you in the position of your father, so thank Allah.”
Statement of Aminuddin Tabarsi
13- Elamul Wara: It is narrated that of the things that indicate the validity of his Imamate are the narrations explicitly describing his occultation and its exclusive qualities and its occurrence with the said attributes, so much so that none of these foretold qualities and attributes have fallen short.
It is not ordinary that a massive number of people create a lie, which predicts a future event, and then that event takes place as they have described. As the narrations of his occultation precede the time of the Hujjah (a.s.), but rather the time of his father and grandfather - to an extent that many sects such as Kaisaniyya, Nawusiyya, and Mamtura argued on the basis of these traditions for their beliefs; Shia narrators recorded them in their books in the days of the Two Doyens Imam Baqir and Imam Sadiq (a.s.) and narrated them from the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.s.) and the Imams, one after the other - it is very fair to conclude the Imamate of the Master of the Age with the qualities and the occultation described about him in the narrations of his Imamate. No one can dare deny this.
Of the reliable narrators and authors from the Shia is Hasan Ibne Mahbub Zarrad, who authoredKitabul Mashikha , which is one of the primary Shia books and more reputable thanKitabul Mazni and its likes. He wrote this book more than a hundred years before the occultation. He has recorded therein some of the narrations which we have mentioned amongst the traditions of occultation. And all that have been narrated and included in the traditions have occurred with no inconsistency.
Of such narrations is his narration from Ibrahim Harithi on the authority of Abu Basir from Imam Ja’far Sadiq (a.s.). Abu Basir says, I said to him,
“Abu Ja’far (a.s.) used to say, ‘There will be two occultations for Aale Muhammad (a.s.), one long and the other short.”
The Imam said: “Yes, O Abu Basir. One of them is longer than the other. Then his appearance will not take place until the progeny of so-and-so have a dispute, and the circle is tightened, and Sufyani appears, and trials worsen, and death and murder encompass people and they take refuge from that to the Sanctuary of Allah and the Sanctuary of His Messenger (a.s.).”
Make a note how the two occultations of the Master of the Age (a.s.) have occurred in concert with the contents of the narrations from his forefathers, peace be with them, that have been recorded before his birth. Then the shorter occultation was when his emissaries were present as his well-known gateways. The Imamiyah who upheld the Imamate of Hasan Ibne Ali (a.s.) did not dispute their authority. Of these emissaries were Abu Hashim Dawood Ibne Qasim Ja’fari, Muhammad Ibne Ali Ibne Bilal, Abu Amr Uthman Ibne Saeed Samman, his son Abu Ja’far Muhammad Ibne Uthman, Umar Ahwazi, Ahmad Ibne Ishaq, Abu Muhammad Wajna, Ibrahim Ibne Mahziyar, Muhammad Ibne Ibrahim, and many others that perchance they will be mentioned when the need shall arise. The length of this occultation was seventy four years.
The author says: Then the author ofElamul Wara , Aminul Islam Tabarsi, recounts the days of the four emissaries almost similar to what we mentioned.
Explanation: Apparently, he means by the duration of occultation the period from beginning of Imamate to the demise of Saymoori, which is shorter than seventy years, since the beginning of his Imamate, according to the common understanding is eight days left from the Rabiul Awwal of two hundred and sixty and the demise of Saymoori is in mid-Shaban of three hundred and twenty eight. And according to his account of Saymoori’s demise, this falls one year short as well, as he says he passed away in the mid-Shaban of three hundred and twenty eight. Perhaps, he has considered the beginning of the occultation from the time of his birth and he has mentioned the holy birth to have taken place in two hundred and fifty five. This would be accurate only on the basis of the date of demise of Saymoori narrated by Shaykh Tusi. According to his own account of the date, it falls short one year. Perhaps, the date of Saymoori, which he mentions is a mistake from his pen.