The Life of Imam Al-hasan Al-mujtaba
Mu’awiya achieved all what he desired in this life and obtained from his world all what he wished and wanted. However, he had an idea that seduced him throughout all his times and deprived him of sleep. If the idea had gone well with him, then all things would have gone well with him according to his viewpoint. The idea was that he wanted his children and progeny to inherit the caliphate and absolute rule. He made every effort to achieve that. So he brought near those far, spent a lot of money, and traveled to Yathrib in spite of his old age and weakness. However, he did not get that as long as Imam al-Hasan was alive. He came to know that he would not carry out his task but through assassinating the Imam for whose just rule all the Muslims waited, that justice, good, and welfare might spread all over the country.
Mu’awiya thought of that for a long time and thought over a means to achieve his wish. At last his statement he had given as an example for assassination and treachery, “Surely Allah has soldiers of honey,” appeared before him. He used that and was successful in assassinating Sa‘d bin Abi Waqqas and the leader Malik al-Ashtar. His means was confined to that. More than one time he sent a deadly poison to Imam al-Hasan when he was in Damascus but he failed in assassinating him. So he corresponded with the Emperor of the Rome and asked him to send him a lethal poison quick in effect, but the Emperor refused to respond to him saying:
“Surely it is not correct in our religion to help someone to kill one who does not fight against us.” The Emperor of Rome refused to do that because his religion did not permit him to kill an innocent man, but Mu’awiya regarded that as lawful and it expressed his unbelief. So he again corresponded with him and told him that such an action was lawful, saying: “Surely this man (al-Hasan) was the (grand) son of the One who went out (in revolt) in the land of Tuhama (Allah’s Apostle).” He has gone (in revolt) to seek the rule of his father. I want the poison for him. So relieve the people and the country of him.” Mu’awiya regarded as lawful the assassination of the Imam because he was the (grand) son of Allah’s Apostle (a.s) who destroyed the idols of the people who lived before Islam and put an end to polytheism. Accordingly, the Emperor of Rome was satisfied with that and sent him a deadly poison.[^1] When the poison reached Mu’awiya, he thought of a way to send it to Imam al-Hasan. He thought of the Imam’s relatives and their relatives but he could find none to help him [^1] Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 10, p. 173.
commit this crime. Then he thought of the Imam’s wives and concluded that Ja’dah, daughter of al-Ash‘ath, would meet his request, for her father had forced Imam Ali (a.s), to accept the arbitration and spoiled his army. Mu’awiya was sure that al-Ash‘ath’s daughter would help him achieve his objective and get his wish. At last he sent her the poison with the sinful one, Marwan bin al-Hakam. He commanded Marwan to make Ja’dah desire for marrying Yazid and to give her a hundred thousand dirhams.[^1] It was appropriate for this sinful woman to respond to the request of Mu’awiya. Ja’dah belonged to a bad family with a black history and was disposed by nature for responding to all material motives. Concerning her, Imam al-Sadiq (a.s) has said: “Surely al-Ash‘ath took part in shedding the blood of Imam Ali. His daughter Ja’dah poisoned al-Hasan. And his son took part in shedding the blood of al-Husayn.”[^2] Besides, Ja’dah suffered from complexes because she had no child from the Imam and was treated ordinarily in her house.
Marwan carried the poison to Ja’dah. He gave her the money and made her desire for marrying Yazid if she responded to his request. Satan whispered evil to her, so she became happy with the money and marrying with Yazid. So she accepted to commit the crime. She took the poison from Marwan. Imam al-Hasan was fasting during a very hot time. She served his food and put the poison into the yogurt. The Imam took a mouthful of it. When the poison reached his bowels, it destroyed them. When Imam al-Hasan felt bitter pain, he (a.s) said: “To Allah we belong and to Him is our return! Praise belongs to Allah for meeting Muhammad, the master of the Apostles, my father, the master of the guardians, my mother, the principal of the women of the world, my uncle, Ja‘far al-Tayyar, and Hamza, the master of martyrs.”
Then he turned to Ja’dah and said to her: “O enemy of Allah, you have killed me! May Allah kill you! By Allah, you will not get a successor after me. He (Mu’awiya) has deceived and mocked at you. May Allah disgrace you and him!”[^3]
Certainly Allah disgraced her, for she has been cited as an example of evil, disgrace, sin, and treason. She brought shame on her progeny and children from other than the Imam. When an argument occurred between them and the
[^1] Al-Mas‘udi, Murujj al-Dhahab, vol. 2, p. 353. It was said that Mo’awiya sent her ten thousand dinars and gave her country estates of the land of Kufa. This has been mentioned in the book Tuhaf al-‘Uqool, p. 391. [^2] A‘yan al-Shia, vol. 4, p. 78. [^3] Tuhaf al-‘Uqool, p. 391.
clans of Quraysh, they would revile them, saying: “Sons of a women who poisons her husbands.”[^1] Mu’awiya broke his promise toward her. He did not marry her to Yazid. He mocked at her when she asked him for that, saying: “Surely we like the life of Yazid. Were it not for that, we would fulfill our promise toward you through marrying you to him.”[^2]
Most historians have unanimously agreed on that Imam al-Hasan died of poison, and that it was Mu’awiya who had (ordered to) put poison into his food and killed him.[^3] Other historians have maintained that it was Yazid who poisoned Imam al-Hasan.[^4] If we acknowledged that, then he did that according to his father’s command, for none believes that he committed such a dangerous incident without consulting his father and getting his approval. It is very strange that Ibn Khaldun has tried to justify this action of Mu’awiya and to declare that he was innocent of this crime. He has said: “What is narrated that Mu’awiya had poisoned Imam al-Hasan through the hand of his wife, Ja’dah, daughter of al-Ash‘ath, is from the traditions of the Shia. Far it be from Mu’awiya.”[^5]
Ibn Khaldun has said that out of fanaticism. This historian had been inflicted with this disease. He has written these researches for nothing, but to satisfy
[^1] A‘yan al-Shia, vol. 4, p. 76. [^2] Al-Mas‘udi, Murujj al-Dhahab, vol. 2, p. 303. [^3] Ibn Abi al-Hadeed, Sharh Nahj al-Balagha, vol. 17, p. 4. Tarikh al-Duwal al-Islamiya, vol. 1, p. 53. Tadhkirat al-Khawas, p. 222. Al-Isti‘ab, vol. 1, p. 374. Al-Nasaa’ih al-Kafiya, p. 62. Abu al-Fida’, Tarikh, vol. 1, p. 194. All these books belong to the Sunni Muslims. They have ascribed the murder of the Imam to Mo’awiya. They indicate the corruption of the opinions of some historians who have maintained that it is only the Shi‘ites who have narrated that Mo’awiya poisoned Imam al-Hasan. They also show the corruption of the viewpoint of Dr. Philip Hatti, who has mentioned in his book al-‘Arab, p. 79, saying: “And as for the Shia, they ascribe his (al-Hasan’s) murder to Mo’awiya. They regard al-Hasan as a martyr; rather the master of martyrs.” Dr. Philip Hatti quoted his speech from Ibn Khaldun and did not follow the rest of the sources, that he might understand the subject matter in general. This is a proof of that the orientalists lack scientific research and do not rely on logic and evidence as to their researches.
[^4] Abu al-Fida’, Tarikh, vol. 1, p. 193. Noor al-Abbsar, p. 112. Ibn al-Wardi, Tarikh, vol. 8, p. 43. As for Ibn Katheer, he thinks it is not correct that Yazid had done that apart from Mo’awiya. He has not explained the proof for the incorrectness. There is no reason for that except reckless fanaticism. Otherwise, what prevented Yazid from that while it was he who killed Imam al-Husayn, the master of youth of the Garden and made it lawful for his soldiers to violate the sacred things in Medina, the capital of the Apostle, for three days. Moreover he fornicated his aunt.
[^5] Ibn Khaldun, Tarikh, vol. 2, p. 178. In his book al-Tarikh al-Siyasi, ‘Abd al-Mun‘im has depended on Ibn Khaldun’s statement. Regarding the murder of the Imam, he has said: “We regard it as unlikely that Mo’awiya did that.”
his fanaticism, sentiment, and inclination. We want to ask him: What would prevent Mu’awiya from committing this crime in order that he might make firm his rule and authority for which he committed ugly atrocities and dangerous crimes? Mu’awiya warred against the legal Caliph Imam Ali (a.s), and his son al-Hasan. He killed the Prophet’s companion Hijr bin Adiy and his believing companions. He poisoned Malik al-Ashtar and Sa‘d bin Abi Waqqas. He added to himself Ziyad bin Abeeh, and other than that from among his crimes that none can count. Accordingly, what would prevent Mu’awiya from assassinating and poisoning Imam al-Hasan while he had come to know that the rule would not go well with him except through that?
There is no harm in mentioning some strange statements that are similar to those of Ibn Khaldun in that they are incorrect and far from reality. They are as follows:
- His Death of Tuberculosis
The orientalist Rewait M. Ronaldson has mentioned that Imam al-Hasan (a.s) died of tuberculosis when he was forty-five years of age.[^1] This statement is very strange. None of the historians have mentioned that, for they have unanimously agreed on that the Imam died of poison, and that he did not suffer tuberculosis. This orientalist has written all his researches in this manner void of examination and based on slander and lying.
- His Death of a poisoned Stick
Professor Husayn Wa‘iz has mentioned: “Imam al-Husayn left Medina for Mousil, in Iraq, to seek a cure, for he felt that his health was bad after the incidents of poison. However, a poor, blind person came to him and asked him to give him something as alms. He (the Imam) was sitting on the ground. The blind person put his stick on al-Hasan’s foot and pressed it against the foot. His stick was poisoned. However he (al-Hasan) was treated by physicians and he got well.”[^2]
This statement is very far from correctness, for no historian has mentioned what this man said. It is a pure slander and has no portion of correctness.
[^1] ‘Aqidat al-Shia, p. 90. A statement with the same meaning has been mentioned by Lamens in Da’irat al-Ma‘arif al-Islamiya, vol. 7, p. 400. [^2] Roudat al-Shuhada’, p. 107.
- He was poisoned while circumambulating the Kaaba
The famous historian Ahmed bin Sahl al-Balakhi, better known as al-Maqdisi, has mentioned: “While Imam al-Hasan was circumambulating the Kaaba, a person stabbed him in the upper part of his foot with a poisoned spearhead. He died because of that.”[^1]
This statement is very strange, for only this historian has mentioned it. Perhaps he wanted to deem Mu’awiya as far above that and to say that he was not responsible for this crime. I think that no historian has maintained that.
- He died a natural Death
Dr. Hasan Ibrahim has mentioned that some historians have maintained that Imam al-Hasan died a natural death forty days after he had left Iraq for Yathrib.[^2] This statement is apparently corrupt, for (firstly) Imam al-Hasan did not die a natural death, and (secondly) he stayed in Yathrib for some years before his death, as the historians have unanimously agreed on.
Now, we have to return to detail the circumstance of the Imam. When the poison reached his bowels, he suffered deadly pain. He stayed in the bed of sickness for forty days[^3] , and it was said for two months.[^4] The activity of the poison in his body increased day by day until his holy heart, which had love and affection toward all people, melted out of pain. His brother al-Husayn came to visit him. He saw him pale and wearing a head cloth. He came to know that the poison had cut his bowels into pieces. The misfortune terrified him, so he turned to him and asked:
-Who gave you the poison to drink?
-What do you want for him? -I want to kill him! -If he may remain as he is, then Allah will avenge on him more terribly than you will. If he may not remain as he is, then I would like to be free of any blame.[^5]
[^1] Al-Bid’ wa al-Tarikh (Paris Edition), vol. 6, p. 5. [^2] Tarikh al-Islam al-Siyasi, vol.1, p.398. A statement similar to that has been mentioned by Muhammed As‘ad Talas in his book Tarikh al-Umma al-‘Arabiya, vol. 9, p. 16. He has said: “Al-Hasan left for Medina after the peacemaking. He did not remain (alive) for more than two months.” [^3] Al-Bustani, Da’irat al-Ma‘arif, vol.7, p.38. Ibn Abi al-Hadeed, Sharh Nahj al-Balagha, vol.4, p.4. [^4] Al-Dimyari, Hayat al-Hayawan, vol.1, p.53. It was said that he remained (alive) two days after he had been given the poison to drink. This has been mentioned in the book Tuhaf al-‘Uqool, p. 391. [^5] Al-Isti‘ab, vol. 1, p. 374.
Imam al-Hasan (a.s) avoided shedding blood. He did not want blood to be shed for him even a drop. A physician was brought to him. The physician carefully examined him, but he had no hope of his recovery, so he turned to his family and said to them: “Surely the poison has cut his bowels into pieces!”[^1] Junada bin Abi Umayya, a great companion of the Prophet, came in to Imam al-Hasan to visit him. He said to the Imam: “Preach to me, O son of Allah’s Apostle.”
The Imam (a.s) responded to his request though he was in a critical condition. He gave him these golden words which were more expensive than jewels and in which he had shown the secrets of his Imamate, saying: “O Junada, get ready for your journey (to Allah) and get your provisions before your death comes. Know that you seek the life in this world while death seeks you. Do not carry the concern of your day that has not come on your day when you are. You should know that you will not acquire anything beyond your own sustenance, save as one who looks after things on behalf of others. You should know that you will be called to account according to the lawful in the world, punished for the forbidden wherein, and admonished for the suspicions… Take from it that which suffices you. If it was licit, then you would renounce it.
If it was forbidden, then there would be no sin in it… If there will be a punishment, then the punishment will be easy. Act for your present life as if that you will live forever, and act for your next life as if you will die tomorrow. If you want glory without a clan and respect without an authority, then come out of the abasement of disobedience into the glory of obedience to Allah, the Great and Almighty. If a need disputes with you over making friends with men, then make friends with one who adorns you when you make friends with him. He keeps you when you take from him, helps you when you ask him for help, believes you when you say, and strengthens your assault when you assault. He stretches out his hand (to you) when you stretches your hand (to him) to do (him) a favor, uncovers your defects, counts the good deed when he sees it from you, and gives you when you ask him. He starts speaking with you when you keep silent, and helps you when a misfortune befalls you. Calamities do not come to you from him. Ways from him are not different to you. He does not desert you during the facts, and prefers you (to himself) when you dispute with each other over an apportioned thing.”[^2]
[^1] Al-Bidaya wa al-Nihaya, vol. 8, p. 43. [^2] A‘yan al-Shia, vol. 4, p. 85.
Imam al-Hasan (a.s) supplied Junada with these beneficial commandments containing immortal lessons, valuable, wise sayings, and correct opinions he had taken from his grandfather the Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, and from his father Imam Ali (a.s). He guided him to the best of the programs that guaranteed his success in this world and the next world. ‘Umayr bin Ishaq visited Imam al-Hasan. The Imam (a.s) said to him: “O ‘Umayr, ask me before you will be unable to ask me!” ‘Umayr found it difficult to question him during that critical condition. He said to him: “No, by Allah, I will not question you until Allah makes you well!”[^1]
Then Imam al-Hasan turned to the members of his family and told them about the severe pain from which he suffered, saying: “I have been given poison several times but I have never been given poison like this. A bit of my liver[^2] has come out of my mouth and I began to turn it over with a stick I had.”[^3]
[^1] Safwat al-Safwa, vol.1, p.320. Al-Bidaya wa al-Nihaya, vol. 8, p. 42.
[^2] The narration, if it was correct, has mentioned that the poison had an effect on the liver of the Imam, peace be on him, to the extent that he spewed a bit of it. Modern medicine has demonstrated that poison does not make one spew his liver; rather, it gives rise to an infection in the stomach and disorders in the intestines. That is when the poison is strong. If the poison is not strong, it gives rise to a low blood pressure and an infection in the nerves. In some rare conditions it brings about an inflammation in the liver and some other symptoms mentioned by those specialists in legal medicine. Man may imagine that this speech contradicts what has been mentioned in the narration. That is refused because al-kabad (the liver), in the Arabic usage, is a name given to the special organ in the right side and which secretes the bile. The word al-kabad is also applied to the whole of the belly. It has been mentioned in the books al-Qamoos, vol. 1, p. 332, and Tajj al-‘Aroos, vol. 2, p. 481: “Perhaps the whole of the belly is named al-kabad.” Ibn Sayyida has narrated that Kira‘ has mentioned the word al-kabad in the book al-Munjid and recited: When a youth from among them wills, he stretches out his hand to a smooth kabad (belly) or a breast.
He (Ibn Sayyida) has said: “Al-kabad is figuratively used as a name of al-janb (the waist or side). The tradition, “he put his hand on his kabad,” means that he put his hand on his side or waist from the outside. The traceable tradition: “The earth throws out the pieces of its kabad,” means that it throws out the hidden things in it such as treasures and minerals. Here the Prophet has figuratively used the word al-kabad. This has also been mentioned in the book Lisan al-Arab, vol. 4, p. 378. According to that, the meaning of the narration is that Imam al-Hasan spewed from his stomach some coagulated blood similar to the liver. I think that through this (explanation) it seems that there is no contradiction between the narration and what the doctors have mentioned, and Allah is Knowing.
[^3] Ibn Abi al-Hadeed, Sharh Nahj al-Balagha, vol.4, p.17.
His brother (Imam al-Husayn), visited him. When he saw him suffering from the pain of the poison, he wept. So al-Hasan looked at him and asked: -What has made you weep, O Abu Abdullah?
-I am weeping for that which has been done to you! Imam al-Hasan had come to know of that which his brother would face after him. So his state was easy to him. He wept and said to him with shaking, sad tones: “I have been given poison to drink. I will be killed with it. However, there is no day like your day, O Abu Abdullah. Thirty thousand people will approach you. They will claim that they belong to the community of our grandfather Muhammad, may Allah bless him and his family, and follow the religion of Islam. They will gather together to kill you, shed your blood, violate your sacredness, take your progeny and your womenfolk as prisoners of war, and plunder you.”[^1]
Surely all that which the pure family met after the death of the Prophet (a.s) of sorrows and misfortunes was not similar to the disaster of Abu Abdullah al-Husayn (a.s). There was no day like his day, for on that day (the day of Aashura), Islam was abased, the dignity of the Muslims and the sacredness of the Prophet were violated, while it was incumbent on people to take care of his sacredness and to be kind to his household. Imam al-Hasan suffered from a severe pain and no longer could bear it. One of those who visited him said to him: “O son of Allah’s Apostle, why have you become impatient? Is your grandfather not Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, your father not Ali, and your mother not Fatima? Are you not the master of the youths of the Garden?”
The Imam answered him with a weak voice: “I am weeping out of two things; the terrible beginning after death and the separation from the dear ones!”[^2]
His will to al-Husayn
When his pain increased and his condition became more critical, he knew that he was close to the hereafter and far from this world. So he summoned his brother (Imam al-Husayn), made his will to him and entrusted him with his covenant. The Shia have mentioned his will in a manner different from what the Sunnis have narrated. As for the text of what the Shia have narrated, it is as follows: “This is what al-Hasan bin Ali has bequeathed to his brother al-Husayn. He has advised him to bear witness that there is no god but Allah that
[^1] Bihar al-Anwar, vol.10, p.123. [^2] Al-Saduq, al-Amali, p. 133.
He is unique and without partners, and that he should worship Him with a true worship. He has no partner in the kingdom and no helper to save Him… He created everything, then ordained for it a measure. He is the best of those who are worshiped and worthiest of those who are praised. Whoever obeys Him is on the right way, whoever disobeys Him goes astray, and whoever turns to Him in repentance is rightly guided. I have given my will to you, O Husayn, as to those whom I have left behind from among my family, my children, and your household. Pardon their wrong-doer, and accept from their good-doer, that you may be a successor and father for them, and that you may bury me with Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, for I am the worthiest of him and his household. If they prevented you (from doing it), then I adjure you before Allah, by the relationship through which Allah has made me close to you, and the close kinship to Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, that you should not shed even a drop of blood in carrying out my command until you meet Allah’s Apostle. Then you will bring suit against them (before him) and tell him about the affair of the people toward us.”[^1]
As for the text of what the Sunnis have narrated, it is as follows: “O my brother, when Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, passed away, your father looked up to this rule and hoped that he would be its leader. But Allah turned it away from him to Abu Bakr. When death was close to Abu Bakr, he also yearned for it, but it was turned away from him to ‘Umar. When ‘Umar was near to death, he made it consultation among six persons among whom he was. He had no doubt that he would not miss it, but it was turned away from him to ‘Uthman. When ‘Uthman died, the pledge of allegiance was given to him. Then the people disputed with him to the extent that he drew the sword and sought it (the caliphate), but nothing of it went well with him. By Allah, I do not think that the prophethood and the caliphate gather together among us, the household. I have come to know that the foolish from among the people of Kufa will make light of you and make you rise. I have asked ‘A’isha to permit me to be buried in her house with Allah’s Apostle, peace be on him. She has said: ‘Yes.’ I do not know, perhaps that she said that out of shyness. When I die, then ask her for that. If she agrees, then bury me in her house. I do not think but that the people will prevent you if you want that. If they do, then do not ask them for that and bury me in the (cemetery) of Baqee‘ al-Gharqad, for I have in those buried in it an excellent exemplar.”[^2]
[^1] A‘yan al-Shia, vol. 4, p. 79. Al-Saduq, al-Amali. Al-Sayyid al-Murtada, ‘Uyun al-Mu‘jizat. Mir’at al-‘Uqool, vol. 1, p. 226. [^2] Al-Isti‘ab, vol. 1, p. 375. Tarikh al-Khamees, vol. 2, p. 227.
These will have contained disgrace to the dignity of Imam Ali (a.s), and disparaging against him. This speech never suits the manners of Imam al-Hasan. In history there are many insignificant examples similar to this one, but they are clear to the intelligent.
His will to Muhammad
Death approached Imam al-Hasan (a.s) and he knew well that he was at the door of the hereafter. So he ordered Qanbar to summon his brother Muhammad (bin al-Hanafiyyah). Qanbar quickly went to Muhammad. When Muhammad saw Qanbar, he became afraid and asked him: “Has anything happened?” “But (I hope) it is something good,” replied Qanbar with a weak voice, “Come to answer Abu Muhammad (al-Hasan).”
Muhammad became perplexed and astonished. He went out running to the extent that he was not able to put on his sandals properly. He came in to Imam al-Hasan (a.s) while his face was yellow and he was shaking with fear. Imam al-Hasan (a.s) said to him: “Sit down, O Abu Muhammad, for no one like you should not be here to hear the speech by which the dead come to life and the living die. You must be vessels of knowledge and lamps of guidance, for the light during the day is brighter at sometimes than at others. Do you not know that Allah made the sons of Ibrahim imams, and made some of them more excellent than others, and he gave Dawud the Zabur? And you know with what He has marked out Muhammad, may Allah bless him and his family. O Muhammad bin Ali, I only fear that you may be envious, for Allah attributes this to unbelievers. He, the Most High, has said: (Many of the followers of the Book wish that they could turn you back into unbelievers after your faith, out of envy from themselves, (even) after the truth has become manifest to them).[^1] But Allah did not give Satan power over you. O Muhammad bin Ali, shall I inform you of what I heard from your father concerning you?” “Yes,” Muhammad replied. Imam al-Hasan went on saying:
“I heard your father say on the day of Basra (the Battle of the Camel): ‘He who wants to behave with goodness toward me in this world and the next, must behave with goodness toward my son, Muhammad.’ O Muhammad bin Ali, if you want me to inform you (about yourself) when you were sperm in your father’s loin, I can tell you. O Muhammad bin Ali, did you not know that al-Husayn bin Ali is an Imam after me, after the passing away of my soul and the separation of my soul from my body, and he is an Imam before Allah in the Book? It is an inheritance from the Prophet (a.s) which Allah has added to what he inherited from his father and mother, for Allah knows that you are the choice of the [^1] Qur’an, 2, 109.
creation, so He has chosen Muhammad from among you, and Muhammad had chosen Ali, and Ali has chosen me for Imamate, and I have chosen al-Husayn.” Muhammad showed obedience and submission saying: “You are my Imam, and you are my means to Muhammad (the Prophet), may Allah bless him and his family. By Allah, I wish that my soul had departed before I heard these words from you. Verily, in my head there are words (from a well) which buckets cannot empty and which (are like pools so clear that) blowing winds cannot make them cloudy; they are like a book written with (all the) diacritical points on a decorated parchment. I am always about to begin speaking them, but I find myself preceded in it by the Book that was sent down, or what the messengers brought. They are words by which the tongue of one who speaks becomes tired as well as the hand of one who writes. (Even then) it does not reach the standard of your excellence. Thus it is that Allah rewards those who do good, and there is no power save in Allah. Surely al-Husayn is the most knowledgeable of us, best of us in clemency, and the nearest of us to Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, in kinship. He was endowed with understanding before he was born, and he learnt the revelation before he could speak. If Allah had known a goodness in anyone of us, he would not have chosen Muhammad from among us. So when Muhammad chose Ali as an Imam, Ali chose you (as an Imam) after him, and you have chosen al-Husayn (as an Imam) after you. We submit and accept (him) who is the consent.”[^1]
Al-Daynwary has mentioned: “In his last hours, he sent for his brother Muhammad, who was in a country-estate of his. He (a.s) opened his eyes while he was unconsciuos when Muhammad stood before him. First he turned to his brother al-Husayn and said to him: ‘O my brother, I ask you to do good to Muhammad, for he is very dear.’ Then he turned to Muhammad and said to him: ‘O Muhammad, I ask you to take care of al-Husayn. Support and help him!”[^2]
Toward the Most High Comrade
The condition of the Imam became more critical. His pain became more intense. He suffered from the agony of death. He knew that there were just some moments of his valuable life. He turned to the members of his family and said to them: “Take me out to the yard of the house that I may look at the Kingdom of the Heaven.”
[^1] Muhammed bin al-Hanafiya, p. 52. [^2] Al-Akhbar al-Tuwal, p. 203.
They carried him to the yard of the house. When he was there, he raised his head towards the heaven, addressed his Lord and besought Him, saying: “O Allah, surely I have sacrificed my life in anticipation to Your reward, for it is the most lovable life to me. I have been not afflicted with something like it. O Allah, care for my death and mercify my loneliness in the grave!” Then it came to his mind that Mu’awiya had deserted him, broken his promises, and assassinated his father. So he said: “His poisonous drink has acted upon me. By Allah, he has not fulfilled what he promised nor is he truthful in what he said.”[^1] Then he recited some verses of the Holy Qur’an. He besought and supplicated Allah until his pure soul departed to the Garden of the Abode. That noble soul, which had no equal in clemency, generosity, knowledge, mercifulness, affection, and kindness to all people, rose high to the Most High Comrade.
Imam al-Hasan, the clement sire, master of the youths of the Garden, and the Prophet’s darling passed away. The world became dark because of this great loss, and the hereafter shone to receive.[^2]
The Hashimites and the people of Yathrib wept, cried, and lamented for him. Abu Hurayra quickly hurried to the Mosque of the Prophet (a.s). He was weeping with astonishment and shouting at the top of his voice: “The beloved of the Prophet (a.s) has died today! Weep for him!”[^3]
His words broke the hearts and made sorrow hurt the souls. The people of Yathrib hurried to the house of Imam al-Hasan. Some of them were silent, some were crying, some were astonished, and others were wailing. They showed great sadness at the death of the great Imam, who was their refuge, shelter, and resort when a disaster or a misfortune befell them.
[^1] Tadhkirat al-Khawas, p. 23. Ibn ‘Asakir, Tarikh, vol. 4, p. 226. Hulyat al-Awliya’, vol. 2, p. 38. Safwat al-Safwa, vol. 1, p. 226. [^2] The historians have differed over the year when Imam al-Hasan died. It was said that he died in the year 4 9 A. H. This has been said by Ibn al-Athir and Ibn Hajar in his Tahdhib al-Tahdhibin It was said that he died in the year 51 A. H. This has been said by al-Khatib al-Baghdadi in his al-Tarikh and Ibn Qutayba in his al-Imama wa al-Siyasa. Other than that has also been said. The historians have also differed over the month when he died. It was said that he died in Rabee‘ al-Awwal 25. It was said that he died in Safar 28. It was said that he died on Sunday, in (the month of) al-Muharram 10, in the year 45, as it is in the book al-Musamarat, p. 23. The famous narration with the Shi‘ites is that he died on the seventh of Safar when ceremonies are held. In Da‘irat al-Ma‘arif, p. 23, al-Sayyid Mahdi al-Kazimi has mentioned some details about his death. [^3] Tahdhib al-Tahdhib, vol. 2, p. 301. Ibn ‘Asakir, Tarikh, vol. 2, p. 227.
The Imam is prepared for Burial
Imam al-Husayn (a.s) prepared his brother al-Hasan for burial. Abdullah bin Abbas, Abdurrahman bin Ja‘far, Ali bin Abdullah bin Abbas, his (Imam al-Husayn) two brothers Muhammad bin al-Hanafiyya and Abu al-Fadhl al-Abbas helped him in that. He (Imam al-Husayn) washed, shrouded, and rubbed him with camphor. After he had prepared him for burial, he ordered him to be carried to the Mosque of the Prophet, so that the prayer might be performed over him.[^1]
Processions of Escorting
Many people escorted Imam al-Hasan in a manner that the capital of the Prophet (Medina) had never witnessed. The Hashimites sent some people to the outskirts and the neighboring villages to tell the people there about the death of the Imam. The people from there came to take part in escorting the great corpse of the Imam.[^2] Tha‘laba bin Malik has narrated about the great number of those who escorted the Imam, saying: “I witnessed al-Hasan on the day when he died and was buried in (the cemetery of) al-Baqee‘. If a needle had been thrown, it would not have fallen but on a man’s head.”[^3]
The people who escorted the Imam were so many that the cemetery of al-Baqee‘ did not contain them. It was incumbent on the people to hurry to escort the grandson of their Prophet because he undertook their interests, helped their weak, and devoted himself for them.
The Prayer over the Corpse
The Sacred Corpse was carried on the heads from the Imam’s house to the Mosque of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and his family. Prominent and notable people escorted the imam. The holy corpse of Imam al-Hasan (a.s) was put in the mosque, and Imam al-Husayn (a.s) led the people in offering the prayer over him. The rest of the Prophet’s companions and the people of various classes performed the prayer behind him. Ibn Abi al-Hadeed has mentioned: “Imam al-Husayn ordered Sa‘eed bin al-‘Aas to perform the prayer over Imam al-Hasan’s pure corpse and said to him: ‘Were for that it was Sunna, I would not let you lead (us in prayer).’”[^4] This statement is impossible because there were bad relationships between the Umayyads and the Hashimites. Therefore, how did Imam al-Hasan let their leaders pray over
[^1] A‘yan al-Shia, vol. 4, p. 80. [^2] Ibn ‘Asakir, Tarikh, vol. 8, p. 228. [^3] Al-Isaba, vol. 1, p .330. [^4] Ibn Abi al-Hadeed, Sharh Nahj al-Balagha, vol. 4, p.18.
him? The correct thing is that none of the Umayyads attended the funerals of Imam al-Hasan except Sa‘eed bin al-‘Aas.[^1]
The escorting processions headed for the Holy Shrine of the Prophet, that they might let Imam al-Hasan renew his covenant with his grandfather and that they might bury him beside his grandfather. When the Umayyads came to know that, they gathered together and armed themselves. Selfishness and the enmity toward the Hashimites moved them to make an opposition and a riot as to burring Imam al-Hasan alongside his grandfather. As they had come to know that their leader ‘Uthman bin ‘Affan had been buried in Hash Kawkab, which was the cemetery of the Jews, they refused to let Imam al-Hasan to be buried beside his grandfather. They regarded that as shame and disgrace on them. So they said with one tongue: “O Lord, battle is better than ease. Should ‘Uthman be buried in the outskirts of Medina and al-Hasan be buried alongside the Prophet?”
Marwan bin al-Hakam and Sa‘eed bin al-‘Aas went to A’isha. They provoked her to support them. They knew well she was full of malice, jealousy, and envy toward the sons of Ali and Fatima. They said to her: “O mother of the believers, al-Husayn wants to bury his brother al-Hasan beside the messenger of allah. By Allah, if he buried al-Hasan beside his grandfather, he would remove the pride of your father and of his companion ‘Umar until the Day of Resurrection.”
These words moved A’isha, and she enthusiastically rushed to support them as she had rushed before to war against Imam Ali (a.s). She supported them not according to a firm reason but out of her personal tendencies. She asked Marwan: “What shall I do, O Marwan?” “Follow al-Husayn and prevent him from burring al-Hasan alongside the Prophet!”
She quickly and with astonishment arose. A mule was brought to her. She rode the mule and moved towards the crowded escorting processions. She was shouting at the top of her voice: “Do not let him whom I do not like enter my house! If al-Hasan was buried in my house, I would cut this (she pointed to her forelock)!”[^2]
[^1] Tarikh al-Khamees, vol. 2, p. 323. [^2] Many historians have mentioned that ‘Aa’isha prevented (al-Husayn) from burying Imam al-Hasan alongside his grandfather. Among they are Ibn Abi al-Hadeed, in his Sharh Nahj al-Balagha, vol. 4, p.18, Sibt bin al-Jawzi in his Tadhkirat al-Khawas, p.
Through her speech, A’isha did not know that she would shed the blood of Muslims and divide their unity. Without doubt she paid no attention to that, for she had shed their blood at the Battle of the Camel in response to her sentiments full of malice toward Imam Ali (a.s). I wonder, firstly, how did she own the house where the Prophet (a.s) was buried? Did her father not claim that the messenger of Allah said: “We, the prophets, inherit neither gold nor silver nor a house nor a real estate”? Did this narration concern only Fatima (a.s) who was deprived of her inheritance and right? If it was general, then why did the mother of the believers (A’isha) not put it into practice? If we acknowledged that she had the right to inherit her house, then what was the amount of her share of it? That is because she deserved nothing but one-ninth of one-eighth. It was said (to her): “One-ninth of one-eighth belongs to you while you have owned the whole.”
Besides, a wife inherits nothing of the ground; she inherits some of the buildings and the rest of the movable properties.
Secondly, why did A’isha not like Imam al-Hasan, who was the Prophets most beloved son and the fruit of his heart? It is worth mentioning that he said concerning him: “O Allah, I love him and love whoever loves him!” Indeed, through that, A’isha turned away from what was narrated from the Prophet (a.s) concerning his grandson.[^1]
Yes, A’isha responded to the desires of the Umayyads and set out to take part in their procession. She did not allow Imam al-Hasan, the Prophet’s grandson, to be buried beside his grandfather. She paid no attention to the sacredness of the pure family of the Prophet whose love Allah has made obligatory in His Holy Book. However, we belong to Allah and to Him is our return!