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A Big Claim

Compassion and love for Ahl al-Bait (PBUT) (Prophet’s progeny) is without a doubt one of the gems that Shiites are proud of. But is it enough to simply love the Prophet’s progeny and consider ourselves as their followers? When we look into the life of Ahl al-Bait (PBUT), we can find the measure to become a true follower of them…

It has been narrated from Imam Hassan Askari (PBUH) that: after Ma’moon chose Imam Ali Ibn Moosa al-Reza (PBUH) as his successor, his door servant came and said, “A group of people are here and want permission to see you. They say ‘we are the Shiites of Ali (PBUH)”. Imam Reza (PBUH) said, “I am busy; ask them to leave”. The servant asked them leave; they kept coming back for two months and repeated whatever they had said, until they became hopeless and said to the servant, “Please tell our master that we are the follower of his father Ali (PBUH)! The fact that the Imam does not let us visit him has become a cause of reproach by our enemies. If we go back this time without visiting him we will have no respect left for us in our town; therefore, we will be forced to leave our own home town as this suffering is not tolerable for us and as a result of humiliation in front of our enemies.”

Imam Reza (PBUH) allowed for them to enter. They entered, and greeted him. But the Imam did not offer them to sit. They remained standing.

They then said, “O Son of the Messenger of Allah! After this long turning away from us what is the reason for such severity towards us? Is there any reputation left for us?”

Imam Ali ibn Musa al-Reza (PBUH) said, “Recite this verse: And whatever affliction befalls you, it is on account of what your hands have earned, and He pardons much (1). By Allah, in this case I have ignored and shown pride, just as my ancestors Messenger of Allah and Ali, and my fathers would have done.”

They said, “O Son of the Prophet, but why?”

He replied, “Because you claim you are Shiites (followers) of Amir al-Mu’minin (Imam Ali (PBUH)). Shame on you! Amir al-Mu’minin’s (PBUH) Shiites were Hassan and Hussain (PBUT). His Shiites were Salmaan, Abuthar, Miqdad, ‘Ammar, and Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr, who did not disobey the Imam’s orders even for one instant. As for you however, are against him in many of your actions. You belittle most of your obligatory duties; you belittle your brothers’ divine rights… If you had initially claimed that you were of Amir al-Mu’minin’s (PBUH) lovers, those who love his friends, and are enemies of his enemies, I would not have denied your claim. But what you claimed was a very high status, and if you are not able to prove this status through your actions, you would be annihilated, unless Allah’s blessings fall upon you.”

They said, “O Son of the Prophet! We regret what we have said, and we repent to Allah (SWT). Now on we will say what our master has taught us: we are your devotee and friends, and enemies of your enemies.” Imam Reza (PBUH) said, “Very good, my dear brothers and lovers. Now come close to me.” He then continued asking them to get close so that he embraced them. Then the Imam said, “Their repentance caused theirs sins to be forgiven and now they deserve honor and respect due to their love for us.” Then the Imam ordered his servant to investigate their affairs and their families’ and give them alms and bestow them gifts and help them solve their problems.” (2)

According to the aforementioned narration only those persons can claim to be true Shiites whose actions and behavior resemble those of the Ahl al-Bait (PBUT) in all instances. In other words the criteria for a true Shia, is not just love towards the Ahl al-Bait (PBUT), but it is the amount of obedience to the orders of Allah (SWT).

(The above is a selection taken from “Al-Ihtijaj”(2), by Late Scholar Tabarsi)

Roshd Website offers condolences to all Muslims, especially your dear friend, upon the last day of the month of Safar, the anniversary of the martyrdom of the Imam of guidance and the guide to blessing and salvation, Imam Ali ibn Musa al-Reza (PBUH).

Footnotes:

1. The Holy Quran, (42:30)

2. This Hadith is taken from the Persian translation of the book “Al-Ihtijaj Ala Ahl al-Lijaj” by the demised Allamah Tabarsi accomplished by Behzad Ja’fari.

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