The Life of Imam Al-hasan Al-mujtaba
Chapter Iv : Honor and Laudation
Allah’s Holy Book has lauded the excellence of the members of the Ahlul Bayt; and Allah’s Apostle (a.s) honored them. He joined them to the Holy Qur’an. He has made it incumbent on the community to show affection and love for them. It is necessary for us to quote some verses and traditions in respect of the Ahlul Bayt, peace be on them. That is because they strongly related to our research and show us the great importance and high position of Imam al-Hasan (a.s). We will mention that for readers as follows:
The Holy Qur’an
Allah’s Great Book that Falsehood shall not come to it from before it nor from behind it, has mentioned the excellence and position of the Ahlul Bayt with Allah. It is sufficient for us to mention some verses:
1. The Verse of Love (al-Mawadda)
Allah has made it obligatory on Muslims to show love toward Ahlul Bayt, peace be on them. He has said that in the Qur’an: “I do not ask of you any reward for it except love for (my) kin.”[^1] Ibn Abbas has narrated, saying: “When this verse was revealed, a Muslim asked: ‘O Allah’s Apostle, who are your kin whom you have ordered us to obey?’ He (a.s) replied: ‘Ali, Fatima, and her two sons.’”[^2] Abu Na‘eem has narrated on the authority of Jabir, who said: “An Arab of the desert came to the Prophet (a.s) and said: ‘O Muhammad, show me Islam.’ The Prophet said: ‘Bear witness that there is no god but Allah, the One with out partner, and that Muhammad is His servant and Apostle.’ The Arab of the desert asked: ‘Will you ask of me any reward for it?’ ‘No,’ replied the Prophet, ‘except love for the kin.’ ‘My kin or your kin?’ asked the man. ‘My kin,’ retorted the Prophet. ‘Stretch out (your hand) that I may pledge allegiance to you,’ said the Arab, ‘Allah’s curse by upon him who does not love you and your kin.’ ‘Amen!’ said the Prophet (a.s).”[^3] Imam al-Hasan (a.s) has declared that he was among those meant by the verse. He (a.s) has mentioned that during one of his sermons: “I am among Ahlul Bayt whom Allah has made obligatory on Muslims the love to them. He,
[^1] Qur’an, 42, 23. [^2] Al-Fakhr al-Razi, Tafseer, vol. 7, p. 406. Al-Durr al-Manthur, vol. 7, p. 7. Al-Nisaburi, Tafseer. Ibn Jareer al-Tabari, Tafseer, vol. 5, p. 16. Al-Kashif. Al-Sawa‘iq al-Muhriqa, p. 102. Dhakha‘ir al-Uqba, p. 25. Noor al-Absar, p. 100. [^3] Hulyat al-Awliya, vol. 3, p. 201.
the Blessed and Most High, has said: I do not ask of you any reward for it except love for (my) kin; and whoever earns good, We will give him more of good. Therefore, earning good is showing love for us, Ahlul Bayt.”[^1]
Imam al-Shafi‘i has referred to the meaning of this verse, saying:
O Family of Allah’s Messenger, love for you is a religious duty Allah has revealed in the Qur’an.
Al-Fakhr al-Razi has said: “If this (verse) has been established (that it was revealed in respect of Ali, Fatima, and her two sons), then they must be singled out with great magnification. Many verses are proofs on that. The first is these words of Him, the Exalted: except love for (my) kin. The sense of the proof of this is the first part of the verse. It is that which He has already mentioned that the affair of the family of Muhammad (a.s) returns to him. So all those whose affair strongly and perfectly returned to him were the Aal (the family). Without doubt, the relationship between Fatima, Ali, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn and Allah’s Apostle (a.s) was the strongest of all relationships. This is well known through the traditions ensured by many narrations. Therefore, they must be al-Aal (the family).
The second, without doubt, the Prophet (a.s) showed love for Fatima, peace be on her. He (a.s) said: ‘Fatima is a part from me. What hurts her hurts me.’ It has been established through the traditions ensured by many lines of transmission that Muhammad (a.s) showed love for Ali, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn, peace be on them. If that has been established, then it is obligatory on the community to do the same. That is due to these words of Him, the Exalted: “And follow him so that you may walk in the right way.[^2]” And due to these words of Him, the exalted: “Therefore, let those beware who go against his order.”[^3] And due to these words of Him, the exalted: “Say: If you love me, then follow me, Allah will love you.”[^4] And due to these words of Him, the exalted: “Certainly you have in Allah’s Apostle an excellent example.” [^5] The third is that the supplication for al-Aal (the Prophet’s family) is a great position. For this reason the supplication is regarded as the end of al-tashahud in prayer; that is his words: “O Allah, bless Muhammad and the family of Muhammad, and have mercy on
[^1] Al-Hakim, Mustadrak, vol. 3, p. 172. Majjma‘ al-Zawa’id, vol. 9, p. 146. al-Sawa‘iq al-Muhriqa, p. 101. Majjma‘ al-Bayan fi Tafseer Surat al-Shura, vol. 9, p. 29. [^2] Qur’an, 7, 158. [^3] Ibid., 24, 63. [^4] Ibid., 3, 31. [^5] Ibid., 33, 21.
Muhammad and the family of Muhammad! None has such magnification except the Ahlul Bayt (a.s).”[^1]
Most surely, showing love for Ahlul Bayt is among the most important Islamic and religious duties, for through it one can pay the reward of the message, make relationship with the Prophet (a.s) and thank him for the sufferings he met for saving Muslims from polytheism and worshipping the idols. Therefore, it is incumbent on the community to follow his family, and to show respect and love for them.
2. The Verse of Purification (Tattheer)
Among Allah’s clear verses indicating that Ahlul Bayt were protected from sins, purified from deviation and offenses is the verse of Tattheer, in which Allah, the Most High, has said: “Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify a (thorough) purifying.”[^2] The verse clearly indicates that Ahlul Bayt were protected from sins. The research on the verse has many sides:
The Verse is a Proof on the Protection from Sins
To conclude through the verse that Ahlul Bayt are protected from sins is that Allah, the Most High, has limited the intention of keeping away the uncleanness (sins) with the word innama (only), which is the strongest of all the determiners. Besides, there is al (the) in the predicate, and the repetition of the word tahara (purity). According to Arabic grammar, this is a proof of the determination and the specialization. It is well known that it is impossible for the intended things to oppose the intention of Allah, the Exalted, (due to the verse): His command, when He intends anything, is only to say to it: Be, so it is.[^3] So through the verse we can conclude that Ahlul Bayt are protected from sins and acts of disobedience.
The People meant by the Verse
The reliable narrators have unanimously agreed that the verse was revealed in respect of Allah’s Apostle (a.s) Imam Ali, the Commander of the faithful (a.s) Fatima, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn, peace be on them. None associated with them in this excellence.[^4] Al-Hakim has narrated on the authority of Umm
[^1] Al-Razi, Tafseer. [^2] Qur’an, 33, 33. [^3] Ibid., 36, 82. [^4] al-Fakhr, Tafseer, vol. 6, p. 783. Al-Nisaburi, Tafseer. Muslim, Saheeh, vol. 2, p. 331. Al-Khasa’is al-Kubra, vol. 2, p. 264. Al-Riyad al-Nadira, vol. 2, p. 188. Al-Nisa’i, Khasa’is. Ibn Jareer, Tafseer, vol. 22, p. 5. Imam Ahmed Ibn Hanbal, Musnad, vol. 4, p. 107. Al-Bayqahi, Sunan, vol. 2, p. 150. Mushkil al-Aathaar, vol. 1, p. 334.
Salama, who said: “The verse (Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify you a (thorough) purifying) was revealed in my house. So Allah’s Apostle (a.s) sent for Ali, Fatima, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn, peace be on them. Then he said: ‘O Allah these are my household.’ I (Umm Salama) asked: ‘O Allah’s Apostle, am I not of the household?’ ‘You are good,’ he replied, ‘these are my household, O Allah, my household are worthier!’”[^1]
In her other narration, Umm Salama has said: “The verse (Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify you a (thorough) purifying) was revealed in my house. In my house there were Fatima, Ali, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn. Allah’s Apostle (a.s) covered them with his cloak. Then he said: ‘These are my family; therefore, (O Allah), keep away the uncleanness from them, and purify them a (thorough) purifying.’”[^2]
“Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify a (thorough) purifying.” In respect of these words of Him, the Most High Al-Khateeb al-Baghdadi has narrated the following on the authority of Abu Sa‘eed al-Khidri on the authority of the Prophet (a.s). He has said: “Allah’s Apostle (a.s) gathered Fatima, Ali, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn, peace be on them. Then he covered them with his cloak and said: ‘These are my family; therefore, O Allah, keep away the uncleanness from them, and purify them a (thorough) purifying.’ Umm Salama was at the door and asked: ‘O Allah’s Apostle (a.s) am I not among them?’ ‘You are good,’ he replied.’”[^3]
Another example of that the verse concerns them and does not include other than them is that which Ibn Abbas has narrated. He has said: “For nine months I saw Allah’s Apostle (a.s) come every day to the door (of the house) of Ali bin Abi Talib (a.s). He said at the time of each prayer: ‘Peace be on you, Allah’s mercy and blessings be on you, O Ahlul Bayt! Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify you a (thorough) purifying. (Perform) the prayer, may Allah have mercy upon you! (He did that) five times a day.”[^4]
[^1] Al-Hakim, Mustadrak, vol. 2, p. 416. Usd al-Ghaba, vol. 5, 521. [^2] Al-Durr al-Manthur, vol. 5, p. 199. [^3] Tarikh Baghdad, vol. 10, p 278. [^4] Al-Durr al-Manthur.
Ibn Jareer and Ibn Mardawayh have reported the following on the authority of Abu al-Hamra’, who said: “In Medina, for eight months, I saw Allah’s Apostle (a.s) go out (to perform) the Morning Prayer. He used to put his hands on both sides of the door and said: ‘(Perform) the prayer; Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify a (thorough) purifying.’”[^1]
Abu Barzah has narrated, saying: “I performed the prayers with Allah’s Apostle (a.s) for seven months. When he went out of his house, he went to the door (of the house) of Fatima, peace be on her, and said: ‘Peace be on you, Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify you a (thorough) purifying.[^2]
Anas bin Malik has narrated, saying: “The Prophet (a.s) passed by the door (of the house) of Fatima for six months when he went out to perform the prayer. He said: ‘(Perform) the prayer, O members of the house! Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify you a (thorough) purifying. ’”[^3]
In one of his sermons, Imam al-Hasan has said: “And I am among the household among whom Gabriel came down and from whom he ascended (to the heaven). I am among the members of the house from whom Allah has kept away the uncleanness and whom He thoroughly purified.”[^4] Many ways of transmission have ensured the authentic traditions. None can doubt their chain of authorities and their meaning. They all indicate that the Sacred Verse concerns the five people who were beneath the cloak and that it does not concern other than them from the family of the Prophet (a.s).
The Verse does not include the Prophet’s Wives
The wives of the Prophet (a.s) have no share in the verse, which concerns the people who were beneath the cloak. We will mention the following as proofs on that:
- They are wide of the subject of the family, for the family is the subject that includes man’s tribes and relatives, so it does not include wife. Zayd bin Arqam has emphasized this meaning. He was asked: “Who are the family of the Prophet (a.s)? (Are they) his wives?” “No,” he replied, “by Allah, the wife
[^1] Al-Durr al-Manthur. [^2] Majjma‘ al-Zawa’id, vol. 9, p. 169. [^3] Dhakha’ir al-Uqba, p. 24. [^4] Al-Hakim, Mustadrak, vol. 3, p. 172.
remains with her husband for a period of time. Then he divorces her, and she returns to her father and her people. His family are his origin and his blood relationship who have been deprived of the alms after him.”[^1]
- If we approved that the word “family” is generalized to include wife, then it is necessary to specify it, because of the previous traditions ensured by many ways of transmission that requires limiting the generalization.
Ikrima claimed that the verse was revealed in respect of the wives of the Prophet (a.s). He announced that at the market place.[^2] He was so insistent and stubborn that he said: “If someone wants (to discuss the verse), I will discuss with him that it was revealed in respect of the wives of the Prophet (a.s).”[^3] None depends on Ikrima’s narration for the following reasons:
He belonged to the Kharijites[^4], who were famous for showing enmity and trickery toward Imam Ali, the Commander of the faithful (a.s).
He was known and famous for lying. It has been narrated on the authority of Ibn al-Musayyab that he said to a retainer of his called Burd: “Do not tell lies to me as Ikrima told lies to Ibn Abbas.”[^5] It has been reported that Uthman bin Murrah said to al-Qasim: “Ikrima has related to us so-and-so.” “My nephew,” replied al-Qasim, “Ikrima is a liar. He reports a tradition in the early morning and opposes it in the evening.”[^6] Therefore, how can man rely on Ikrima’s traditions while he has been accused of telling lies?
He was a sinner. He listened to songs, played backgammon, and neglected the prayers. He was feebleminded.[^7]
The Muslims disregarded him, turned away from, and avoided him. They hated him very much, that none prayed over him when he died, and none escorted him to his grave. So how can man depend on him while he faces these criticisms? Besides, these traditions are regarded as among those called al-Aahaad. Even if they are not afflicted with weakness, they are not good to oppose the authentic traditions ensured by many ways of transmission.
[^1] Muslim, Saheeh, vol. 2, p. 238. Ibn Kuthayr, Tafseer, vol. 3, p. 486. [^2] Al-Wahidi, Asbab al-Nizool, p. 268. [^3] Al-Durr al-Manthur, vol. 5, p. 198. [^4] Tabaqat al-Qurra’, vol. 1, p. 15. Ibn Sa‘d, Tabaqat, vol. 5, p. 216. [^5] Imam Sharaf al-Deen, al-Kalima al-Gharra’. [^6] Mu‘jam al-Udaba’. [^7] Tahdhib al-Tahdhib, vol. 7, p. 263.
The Verse of Mubahala
Among the illustrious signs of Allah that laud the excellence of the Ahlul Bayt, peace be on them, is the verse of al-Mubahala. Allah, the Exalted, has said: “If anyone disputes with you concerning him, after knowledge has been given to you, say to him: Come, let us call our sons and your sons, our women and your women, and ourselves and yourselves. Then let us call on Allah to witness against each other and let us make the curse of Allah fall on those who lie.”[^1] The scholars unanimously has narrated through many ensured ways of transmission that the verse was revealed in respect of the Ahlul Bayt, peace be on them. The phrase “Our sons” means al-Hasan and al-Husayn. “Our women” means Fatima, and “ourselves” means Ali.
The story of al-Mubahala in brief is that the deputation of Christians from Najran went to Allah’s Apostle (a.s) to debate with him on his religion. After a long conversation took place between them, they agreed on al-Mubahala, which is that they besought Allah and made His immortal curse and His quick punishment fall on those who lied. They appointed a time for that. Allah’s Apostle (a.s) went out on the day on which they had agreed. He chose for al-Mubahala the dearest ones to him and the most honorable with Allah, al-Hasan, al-Husayn, Fatima, the mistress of the women, and Imam Ali, the Commander of the faithful. He (a.s) embraced al-Husayn and caught al-Hasan by his other hand. Behind him walked Fatima al-Zahra’, who shone with Allah’s light. Imam Ali, whose magnificence was manifest, walked behind her. The chief and the deputy and their two sons went out. They wore dresses and ornaments. With them were the Christians from Najran, and the horsemen from the Banu al-Harth were riding their horses. They were in the best appearance and readiness. Many people overcrowded and watched the important event. They asked each other: “Will the Christians make the contest of prayer or refrain from making it?” While they were watching, the chief and the deputy walked towards Allah’s Apostle (a.s). Stupor and confusion appeared on their faces, so they asked: “O Abu al-Qasim, through whom will you make the contest of prayer with us?”
“Through the best ones of the dwellers of the earth and the most honorable of them with Allah I will make the contest of the prayer,” he replied. He pointed with his hand to Ali, Fatima, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn.
They admired that and asked Him: “Why do you not make the contest of prayer with us through the men of dignity, eminence, and sign from among those who have believed and followed you?”
[^1] Qur’an, 3, 61.
Allah’s Apostle (a.s) answered: “Yes, I will make the contest of prayer through these (people), who are the best of the dwellers of the earth and of the creatures.”
So they were astonished; their hearts melted because of fear and terror. They went back to the Bishop, their leader, to consult with him about the affair. They asked him: “O Abu al-Harith, what do you think of the affair?” The Bishop, who was filled with the veneration of the family of the Prophet (a.s) replied: “I can see some faces that if someone asked Allah through them to remove a mountain from its place, he would remove the mountain.” He was not satisfied with that; rather, he supported his speech with some proofs and oaths, saying: “Do you not see Muhammad raising his hands (towards the heaven)? He is waiting for what are you going to bring. I swear by al-Maseeh (Jesus Christ), if his mouth said a word, we would not return to a people or to wealth Then he shouted at them: “Do you not see that the color of the sun has changed, black clouds have covered the horizon, black, red wind strongly blowing, and smoke ascending from the mountains? The punishment has towered over us. Look at the birds spewing their craws, the leaves falling from the trees, and the ground shaking beneath our feet!”
Allah is great! The greatness of those sacred faces covered the Christians, and they believed in their dignity and importance with Allah. So they humbly stood before the Prophet (a.s) and carried out his requests. Accordingly, the Prophet (a.s) said: “I swear by Him in whose hand is my soul, most surely the punishment has hanged down upon the Christians from Najran. If they had made the contest of prayer, they would have been turned into apes and pigs. The valley where they were would have been on fire, Allah would have uprooted Najran and its dwellers even the birds and the trees, and all the Christians would not have witnessed the end of the year….”[^1] The story of the contest of the prayer indicates that Ahlul Bayt had a high position, that they were the best ones of Allah’s creatures, the most lovable to Allah’s Apostle (a.s) and that none else of the community shared them this merit.
The Sura of Hal Ata
One of the blessed Suras (chapters) of the Holy Qur’an was revealed in respect of the Ahlul Bayt, peace be on them. The Sura is Hal Ata. Most of commentators (of the Qur’an) and traditionists have narrated that it was [^1] Noor al-Absar, p. 100.
revealed in respect of them.[^1] The reason behind revealing this sura was that once al-Hasan and al-Husayn became ill. So their grandfather Allah’s Apostle (a.s) along with some of his companions visited them. They said to Imam Ali: “Make a vow to Allah, that he may make them well.” The Imam (a.s) made a vow to Allah. He fasted for three days as giving thanks to Allah for His making them well. Fatima, the truthful, peace be on her, and her slave girl followed him in this respect. After al-Hasan and al-Husayn had got well, they all fasted. Imam Ali, the Commander of the faithful (a.s) had no food to break his fasting. He borrowed three Saa‘s (a measure of capacity) of barely. On the first day, Fatima, the truthful, peace be on her, ground a Saa‘ and baked it. When it was time for them to break the fast, a poor man asked them for food. Imam Ali gave him his food. Then the rest of the family did just as the imam did. They gave their food to the poor man. They spent the night without tasting any kind of food. They rose in the morning while they were fasting. On the second day, they put the food before them. When it was time to break their fasting, an orphan complained to them of painful hunger. They all denoted their food.
They spent the night tasting nothing except pure water. On the third day Fatima (a.s) ground the rest of the barely and baked it. When it was time for them to break the fast, a captive knocked the door asking for food. They drew their hands from food and gave it to the captive. O Allah, glory belongs to You! Which kindness is better than this? Which selflessness is greater than this?
On the forth day Allah’s Apostle (a.s) visited them. He saw them in a terrible condition. He saw their yellow faces and their shaking bodies because of weakness. So his state changed, and he said: “What a pity! Muhammad’s household are writhing with hunger!”
Before Allah’s Apostle (a.s) ended his speech, Gabriel had come down to him. He revealed to him the Sura of Hal Ata, in which Allah has lauded and praised Ahlul Bayt, saying: Surely the righteous shall drink of a cup the admixture of which is camphor. A fountain from which the servants of Allah shall drink; they make it to flow a (goodly) flowing forth. They fulfill vows and fear a day the evil of which shall be spreading far and wide. And they give food out of love for Him to the poor and the orphan and the captive.[^2]
[^1] Al-Fakhr, Tafseer, vol. 8, p. 392. Al-Nisaburi, Ruh al-Bayyan, vol. 6, p. 546. Al-Wahidi, Asbab al-Nizool, p. 331. Al-Durr al-Manthur. Yanabee‘ al-Mawada, vol. 1, p. 93. Al-Riyad al-Nadira, vol. 2, p. 227. [^2] Qur’an, 76, 5-8.
Allah thanked them for their selflessness, which had no match in the world of kindness. He made them inherit Paradise in the next world. He made their name immortal and their life a model (for others). Moreover, He has made them Imams until He inherits the earth and those on it. With this verse we will end our speech about some verses revealed in respect of the Ahlul Bayt. Without doubt the verses that deal with Imam al-Hasan (a.s) indicate his important affair and his high position with Allah.