Chapter Seven: The doctrine of Imamate from a Shi’a perspective (Part III)
In this chapter we will be discussing topics:
: The Imam’s possession of the knowledge of Prophets and Angels
: The knowledge of previous books possessed by the Imams
: The Imam’s knowledge of the unseen
: The Imams are the masters of this world and the next
: Miracles bestowed on the Imams
. The ability of the Imams to raise the dead
: The Imams meeting with angels
: All the deeds of men are presented before Imams
: The role of Imam (as) during Laylatul Qadr (Night of Power)
: The knowledge of unseen in respect of knowing the death of others
: The Imams knowing the time of their death and having authority over it
: The Imams knowledge over whether a person is destined for Heaven or Hell
: The Imams possession of the knowledge of Prophets and Angels
Islamweb’s onslaught on the Shi’a includes this wonderful analysis:
“The Imams possess all the knowledge granted to angels, prophets and messengers” (Al-Kulaini, Al-kaafi, p.255.) Well here is more shirk from the Shi’ites… How can an Imam, who is just a human, know the Unseen??? Only Allah knows the Unseen, and think about this… The Imams were not even Alive at the time of all of the prophets so here is a major contradiction in the Shi’ite faith!
Could this Nasibi tell us how modern man has knowledge of how a telephone system operates when you were not alive during the time of its founder Thomas Edison? The answer is this knowledge was then passed on through the generations, so that even simpletons like the Islamweb writers possess a general understanding of the telephone. This is what is called the transference of knowledge through the generations.
Imam of Ahl’ul Sunnah Muhammad Ismaeel Bukhari set about taking collecting narrations long after the death of Rasulullah (s). When such individuals narrated these Hadith were they committing shirk, since they possessed ghayb, as they had never seen the Prophet (s)? Clearly not, the teachings of the Prophet (s) had been passed on to them by their father, forefather, their teachers etc! Likewise knowledge that was possessed by Prophets and Messengers was not just hidden away in their minds. This was disseminated as inheritance through the lineage of the Prophets and let us not forget some Prophets also brought divine books, ultimately this knowledge went to Rasulullah (s) the City of Knowledge and was then transferred as inheritance to ‘Ali (as) and then to the other eleven Imams.This fact was beautifully elaborated on by Imam Jafar al Sadiq (as):
“The Prophet Dawud inherited the knowledge of the preceding prophets, and he then bequeathed it to Sulayman. From Sulayman it was transmitted to the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him and his family, and we in turn have inherited it from him.”
Abu Basir who was present then saw fit to remark: “There are all kinds of knowledge!” The Imam responded! “The knowledge you have in mind is not particularly valuable. The knowledge of which I speak is truly precious; it is inspired in us night and day, from one hour to the next.”
al-Kulayni, al-Kafi, Vol. I, p.225.
The Nasibi is suggesting how the Imams knew the teachings of past Prophets when they were not alive, well that type of Nasibi logic would suggest that neither the Imams nor Prophet Muhammad (s) should have a knowledge of any aspect of the lives of past Prophets after all to quote their logic they were not even Alive at the time of all of the prophets so here is a major contradiction in the Shi’ite faith!
This being the case could this Nasibi author kindly offer an explanation to this Hadith that we read in Sahih Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 55, Number 616:
Hammam b. Munabbih reported that Abu Huraira reported many ahadith from Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) and one, of them speaks that Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) is reported to have said: Banu Isra’il used to take bath (together) naked and thus saw private parts of one another, but Moses (peace be upon him) used to take bath alone (in privacy), and they said: By Allah, nothing prevents Moses to take bath along with us; but scrotal hernia. One day when he (Moses) was taking bath (alone) he placed his clothes upon a stone, but the stone began to move along with his clothes. Moses raced after it saying: My garment, stone; until (some of the people) of Banu Isra’il looked at the private parts of Moses, and they said: By Allah, there is no trouble with Moses. The stone stopped after he (Moses) had been seen. He took hold of his garments and struck the stone. Abu Huraira said: I swear by Allah that there were six or seven scars on the stone because of the striking of stone by Moses (peace be upon him).
Whilst here is not the place to address this filthy narration, suffice it to say the Ahl’ul Sunnah have graded it as Sahih, so tell us Islamweb when (according your aqeedah) Rasulullah (s) was not alive at the time of Musa (as) then how was he aware of that that the Jews believed that he had a genital defect? How did the Prophet (s) know that a stone ran off with the clothes of Musa (as)? More interesting is Abu Hurrayra’s addition, about the marks on the stone, how did he know that there are six or seven marks present on the stone from the beating? When you deem this narration as Sahih then the position you held is shot down by it! Will you therefore issue Takfeer against Bukhari for claiming this? And what about the claim of Abu Hurrayra, a claim so confident that he swore before Allah (swt) at its accuracy?
Besides the above cited tradition, there are many other traditions written in Sahih texts of Ahl’ul Sunnah wherein the Prophet (s) or his companions mentioned the incidents of past nations. For example:
- The Prophet (s) narrated the conversation Prophet Musa (as) had with Allah (swt). [Sahih Bukhari Volume 1, Book 3, Number 124]
- The Prophet (s) narrated a debate between Prophet Musa (as) and Prophet Adam (as) [Sahih al Bukhari Volume 6, Book 60, Number 260]
- The Prophet (s) narrated a conversation between Isa (as) and a suspected thief [Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 55, Number 653]
- The Prophet (s) narrated that Prophet Sulayman planned on impregnating seventy women in one night (astaghfirullah) [Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 55, Number 635]
- Abudullah ibn Abbas said: All the idols which were worshipped by the people of Noah were worshipped by the Arabs later on. [Sahih al Bukhari Volume 6, Book 60, Number 442]
- Abu Musa said: When the skin of anyone amongst the people of Israel was besmeared with urine, he cut that portion with a cutter. [Sahih Muslim Book 002, Number 0523, Sahih Bukhari Volume 1, Book 4, Number 226]
- Abu Hurraira said ‘The Angel of Death was sent to Moses when he came to Moses, Moses slapped him on the eye’. [Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 55, Number 619]
Whilst the first two responses will suffice as rebuttals to Nasibi logic we shall now look at the position from another angle. The Nasibi writers of the Ansar.org and Islamweb adhere to a Sect that is devoid of any recognition of the spiritual dimension that was the Wilayah of Rasulullah (s) and the Ahl’ul bayt (as) Imams, which is why they will never be able to understand this Hadith:
“I was prophet when Adam was between soul and body.
Sharah Fiqh Akbar, page 72
This proves the existence of Rasulullah (s) before Adam (as). What we know is that Rasulullah (s) was not alone at this stage, this is evident from the supplication that Adam (as) made, that we cited earlier:
“Ibn al Najjar narrates that Ibn Abbas asked Rasulullah (s) in connection with the above matter, and Rasul (s) stated, Adam said “Through Muhammad, ‘Ali, Fatima, Hasan and Hussain, please accept my repentance. Allah (swt) then accepted his repentance”.
Tafseer Durre Manthur Volume 1 pages 60-61 by Imam of Ahl Sunnah al Hafidh Suyuti
The very fact that Adam (as) took these names in his supplication, proves that these individuals existed in some form prior to the creation of Adam (as). When (from this tradition) three of the Ahl’ul bayt (as) Imams were present before the creation of Adam (as) then what is the objection if we believe that their presence provided them the benefit of attaining the knowledge that Allah (swt) had given Adam (as)? If the Imams were present at the time of Adam (as) then naturally they were also present at the time of the other Prophets (s), and that state is explained to us in this Hadith cited by ‘Ubaydullah Amritsari in Arjahu ‘l matalib, Ist ed. 1340 A.H. pp. 458 463.
The Holy Prophet said: “I and ‘Ali were one Light in presence of Allah fourteen thousand years before the creation of Adam. When Adam was created that Light was placed into his loin. Thus Allah was transferring it from noble loins to pure wombs until Allah settled it into the loin of ‘Abdu ‘l Muttalib. Then Allah divided it into two, one part went into the loin of ‘Abdullah and the other to that of Abu Talib. Therefore ‘Ali is from me and I am from him, his flesh is my flesh and his blood is my blood; whoever loves him, he does so because of my love, and whoever hates him, he does so because he hates me. “
The nur of Rasulullah (s) and Maula Ali (as) remained in a lineage that started with Adam and then split at the point of Abdul Muttalib. This nur remained in the pure linage of the Prophets as such Rasulullah (s) and his Wasi (as) were present in a state of nur during the life of each Prophet. If the Shi’a believe that Maula Ali possessed the knowledge of past Prophets because he was alive at the time (in a state of nur with the Prophet), then it is in complete conformity with this Hadith!
Reply Four – The Ahl’ul Sunnah believe that the Ruh (spirit) of Imam Ghazali conversed with Nabi Musa (as) decades before his birth.
Saim Chisthi al Hanafi in Mushkil kushah Volume 1 page 88-90 cites this reference:
“The Prophet (s) met with Musa (as) on the night of Miraj, and Musa asked ‘Oh Pious Prophet (s) and pious brother, you have stated ‘The Ulema of my Ummah are equal to the Prophets of Banu Israeel’, I would like to speak to one of the scholars from your Ummah. The Prophet (s) summoned the ruh (spirit) of Ghazali, and they said Salaam to one another. Hadhrat Musa (as) queried ‘What is your name?’’ to which Ghazali said Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Muhammad Ghazali”. Musa (as) said I asked you name not that of your father or grandfather’.. Ghazali replied ‘You was asked what is that in your hand?’ To which you replied ‘this is my stick, that I use as support, and steer sheep and take other benefits, was is not sufficient for you to say ‘This is my stick’? [Tafree al Khathir, page 9 printed in Egypt).
Mushkil kushah, Volume 1 page 88-90
This episode can also be read in the following Deobandi book:
Shamaim Imadiyah, page 70 by Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi
If the Ahl’ul Sunnah have no objection to believing that Imam Ghazali possessed a knowledge of the Qur’an before his physical birth, rather knew of this verse in a state of Ruh (spirit) then there should be no objection if the Shi’a likewise believe that Maula Ali both absorbed and inherited the knowledge of past Prophets due to his existence as Nur.
: The knowledge of previous books possessed by the Imams
All the Scriptures revealed to preceding Prophets like Torah, Bible and Psalms, are with the Imams and they read them in their original languages.Another Chapter of Usul-e-Kafi bears the titled: “The Imams have with them all the Books revealed by God to Prophets of yore and in spite of difference in language they read and understand them”.In it, traditions appropriate to the heading and some events concerning Imam Jafar Sadiq and his son. Musa Kazim are mentioned. In the preceding chapter of Usul-e-Kafi, also, there are narrations bearing the same import. For example, Imam Jafar is reported to have said: “We possess the knowledge of Torah1, Bible and Psalms of David and an authentic record of all that was in the Tablets.” (p. 137).In another chapter, there is one more saying of Imam Jafar Sadiq which reads: “We possess Al-Jafrul Abyaz.” On being asked what it was, he said: “It means Psalms of David, Torah of Moses, Bible of Christ and Scriptures of Abraham”. (p. 147).
“The Imams have knowledge of all the revealed books, regardless of the languages in which they were revealed” (Ibid, p. 227.) As you can see these Shi’ites have elevated their Imams to a God-like level, and the Shi’ites say that there is nothing wrong with this!!! Now can we see why the Shi’ites are different to us muslims!
Reply One –The Qur’an encompasses all previous books
The Qur’an encompasses the teachings of all past books, whilst some aspects of Shari’ah in past books were abrogated for the Qur’an there was no real change in relation to the Sunnah, as Allah (swt) says in Sural al Fath verse 12:
Such has been) the practice of Allah already in the past: no change wilt thou find in the practice of Allah.
We believe that Rasulullah (s) as the Seal of all Prophets (s) and the City of Knowledge had been equipped with knowledge of all divinely revealed texts. As the true inheritors of the Qur’an and Sunnah, our Imams have a complete command over Qur’anic injunctions as such their knowledge meant that they could accordingly resolve matters in previous divine books. If Islamweb are outraged as such a belief, is should not as much of a surprise after all there most authentic texts contain traditions that state that Rasulullah (s) forgot verses of the Holy Qur’an, and his memory was refreshed by a Sahaba. This is proven from Sahih al Bukhari book 61, volume 6, Hadith number 556:
Narrated Aisha: The Prophet heard a man reciting the Qur’an in the mosque and said, “May Allah bestow His Mercy on him, as he has reminded me of such-and-such Verses of such a Surah.”
When according to the Ahl’ul Sunnah, Rasulullah (s) was ignorant of the very text that he (s) brought, then it is only fair for them to mock the Shi’a for believing that Rasulullah (s) and his twelve inheritors were endowed with knowledge of all divine texts!
Reply Two – Imam Ali bin Abi Talib (as) confirmed that he possessed knowledge of all the divinely revealed books
We are citing from the following authority works of Ahle Sunnah:
- Tafseer Ruh al-Ma’ani, Volume 6 page 141
- Al Kashf al-Bayan fi Tafsir al-Quran by Imam Abu Ishaq Thalabi, Vol 5 page 162
- Matalib al Seul by Muhammad Ibn Talha Shafiyee, page 149
- Tafsir Shawahid al-Tanzeel, by al-Hakim al-Hasakani, Vol 1 pge 336
- Yanabi al Mawwadah, page 83 & 86
Imam Abu Ishaq Thalabi in his authority work ‘Al Kashf al-Bayan fi Tafsir al-Quran’ popularly known as ‘Tafsir Thalabi’ records this tradition in the commatnery of Surah Hud:
عن زادان قال سمعت عليا يقول والذي فلق الحبة وبرأ النسمة لو ثنيت لي وسادة فأجلست عليها لحكمت بين أهل التوراة بتوراتهم وبين أهل الإنجيل بإنجيلهم وبين أهل الزبور بزبورهم وبين أهل الفرقان بفرقانهم
Zadan said: ‘I heard Ali saying: ‘By who split the seed and send the winds, if a cloth is placed on the ground and I sit there, I will judge the people of the Torah according to the Torah, people of the Injeel according to the Injeel, people of Zaboor according to the Zaboor, and people of Furqan (Quran) according to the Quran.’’
Online Tafsir Thalabi, (MS Word, Doc page No. 1004)
Allamah Shahabuddin Mehmood Alusi records the following tradition in Tafseer Ruh al-Ma’ani under the commentray of Surah 5 verse 42:
وروي عن علي كرم الله تعالى وجهه من أنه قال لو ثنيت لي الوسادة لأفتيت أهل التوراة بتوراتهم وأهل الإنجيل بإنجيلهم
“Ali narrates if a cloth is placed on the ground, I will judge the people of the Torah according to the Torah, people of the Injeel according to the Injeel.”
Tafseer Ruh al-Maani, Volume 6 page 141
The great Shafiyee scholar Mufti Muhammad Ibn Talha Al-Shafiyee also recorded the very tradition:
Once Ali said: ‘If a cloth is placed on the ground and I sit there, I will judge the people of the Torah according to the Torah, people of the Injeel according to the Injeel, people of Zaboor according to the Zaboor, and people of Furqan (Qur’an) according to the Qur’an.’
We shall now evidence this by presenting traditions recorded by Shaykh Suleman Qandozi al-Hanafi in Yanabi al Mawaddah from further two Sunni works.
“Sharh al Kibriyat al Ahmar records that Ali narrated: ‘If a cloth is placed on the ground, I will judge the people of the Torah according to the Torah, people of the Injeel according to the Injeel and people of Furqan (Qur’an) according to the Quran’”.
Yanabi al Mawaddah page 83
Sharh Ta’aruf records – ‘There is a consensus that ‘Ali is the Chief of the Arif’s (people of recognition) and he made a claim that non before or after him have made, namely on one occasion he declared on the pulpit ‘Ask me anything, an ocean of knowledge is flowing in my chest, Rasulullah (s) filled my chest in the same manner that a bird feeds its offspring. I swear by He (swt) who controls my life if permitted to do so, I will judge the people of the Torah according to the Torah, the people of the Injeel according to the Injeel, if I am allowed to tell people about Ahkam I will tell the people of those things that are in them, and these books shall corroborate my position”.
Yanabi al Mawaddah page 86
Shrah Ta’aruf was written by Ismail bin Muhammad bin Abdullah al-Mustameli as we read:
“Ismail bin Muhammad bin Abdullah al-Mustameli, Sufi and from his traces its ‘Sharh al-Ta’aruf le madhab al-Tasawuf’.”
1. Muj’am al-Mualfeen by Umar Raza Kahala (Egypt), Volume 2
2. Hidayat al-Aarfeen by Ismail Basha al-Baghdadi, Volume 1 page 209
We shall now quote two narrations from Manaqib Mutazvee, by Mullah Muhammad Saleh al Kashafi; this is an old Sunni work and was presented to the Indian ruler Shah Jahan at the time of completion in the 16th Century. These two narrations are on page 299:
Nuzlul Sahireen has this narration from Ibn Fakhree ‘I heard the Commander of the Faithful on the pulpit of Kufa whilst wearing the cloak helmet, ring of the Prophet (s), and carrying his (s) sword his (s) sword say ‘Ask me whilst I am still amongst you, since an ocean of knowledge is within my heart, by Allah! If a cloth is placed before me I will issues verdicts for the people of the Torah from the Torah, for the people of Injeel from the Injeel, if Allah (swt) gave (these books) the authority to speak they would conform ‘Whatever ‘Ali is stating is correct’.
In Hidayah al Sa’uda and Sahayf we read that Ali said ‘if a cloth is placed before me I will judge the people of the Torah according to the Torah, the people of the Injeel according to the Injeel, people of Psalms against the Psalams, and the people of Islam according to the Qur’an”.
The testimony of Imam Ali (as) from Sunni sources about possessing the knowledge of previously revealed books shall suffice to shut the mouth of our opponents. The same knowledge was passed over to the later Imams (as).
Reply Three – The Sunni claim that their scholars possessed knowledge of Loh al-Mehfooz [Preserved Tablet]
Allamah Al-Hai bin Ahmed al-Akri al-Damashqi (1032 to 1089) popularly known as Ibn Imad al-Hanbali in his book ‘Shadraat al-Dhahab fi Akhbaar min Dhahab’ writes about Mohiuddin ibn Mustafa Hanafi (d. 950 A.H) that he used to say:
“Whenever I have doubts regarding any verse of the Holy Quran, I divert my attention towards Allah, then my chest widens equivalent to the whole world and two moons appear in it but I do not know what they are, then a light (Nur) come out from them and leads me to Loh-al-Mehfooz and I take out the meaning of the verse from there.”
Shadraat al-Dhahab fi Akhbaar min Dhahab, Volume 8, page 286
On page 178 of the above mentioned book, while writing about the life of Maulana Bakhshi Hanafi (d. 931 A.H), Allamah Al-Hai bin Ahmed al-Akri al-Damashqi records:
“He used to say that I find such and such thing written in Loh-al-Mehfooz, and he never made mistakes.”
On the same page it is written about Ibrahim Al-Desuqi Al-Hashmi Al-Shafiyye Al-Qurashi that:
“He used to talk in all languages, foreigner, Syriac and other. It is said about him that he knew language of the animals and birds, he used to fast when he was infant and he saw what was written in Loh al-Mehfooz when he was seven”
The book ‘Shadraat al-Dhahab fi Akhbaar min Dhahab’ by Allamah Al-Hai bin Ahmed al-Akri al-Damashqi can also be downloaded from the following favourite website of Salafies
Imam of Ahle Sunnah Abu Muhammad Abdullah bin Asad al Yameni (d. 768 H) popularly known as Imam Al-Yaf’ee records about Sheikh Abu al-Hasan Ali bin Hamid Al-Saiedi ibn Al-Sabagh:
“He used to be friends with those people only whom he would find written so in Loh al-Mehfooz.”
Meerat al Jinan, Volume 4 page 25 under the topic ‘Year 612’
The reference can also be read from the online Miraat al Jinan available at the following Salafi link
Not only these Sunni scholars but according to Salafies/Wahabies their revered vicar Ibn Tamiyah also had access to Loh al-Mehfooz. One of the adored scholars of Salafies Ibn Al-Qaym Al-Jawziah records the words of their master Ibn Tamiyah who predicted the battle between the Muslims and Tatars in this manner:
“Allah wrote in Loh al-mehfooz that they will lose in this battle and the victory will be for Muslim’s army”
(Online) Medarej Al-Salekin by Ibn Al-Qaym Al-Jawziah, Volume 2 page 489
According to both Shia and Sunni belief, Allah (swt) does grant the knowledge of unseen to his chosen ones and according to the Shia belief, the Imams (as) were divinely appointed hence Allah (swt) granted them the knowledge which He (swt) wanted.
But from second aspect, divine books were both physically present and accessible during the lifetime of our blessed Imams, unlike Loh al-Mehfooz; the Preserved Tablet, which records everything that happens in the Universe – this is veiled from human eyes and is in the exclusive possession of Allah (swt). When the Shi’a believe that their Imams (as) had a knowledge of all divinely revealed books, and the languages of them, Islamweb object stating:
“The Imams have knowledge of all the revealed books, regardless of the languages in which they were revealed” (Ibid, p. 227.) As you can see these Shi’ites have elevated their Imams to a God-like level, and the Shi’ites say that there is nothing wrong with this!!! Now can we see why the Shi’ites are different to us muslims!
This being the case, tell us Islamweb about your belief that the Sunni Ulema have access to the secret treasures in Loh-al-Mehfooz? Paraphrasing your comments could you answer these questions:
The Sunni Imams have knowledge of Loh al-Mehfooz:
- Do you agree that Sunnis elevated their Imams to a God-like level’?
- If you don’t agree, why not?
- Can we conclude that you are different to ‘us’ muslims?
If Sunni scholars can have access to the Loh al-Mehfooz a divine tablet concealed with the Creator, then why the objection if we believe that our Imams possessed knowledge of divine scriptures that were in the public domain?
Reply Four – A kaafir’s knowledge of the unseen enabled him to possess a knowledge of Monkey Shari’ah
If Nawasib still wish to remain stubborn on this matter perhaps they could offer an explanation with regards to this narration from Sahih al Bukhari under the chapter Merits of the Helpers in Madinah (Ansaar) Volume 5, Book 58, Number 188:
Narrated ‘Amr bin Maimun:
During the pre-lslamic period of ignorance I saw a she-monkey surrounded by a number of monkeys. They were all stoning it, because it had committed illegal sexual intercourse. I too, stoned it along with them.
Notice how Amr’s knowledge of the unseen was so great that he possessed a knowledge of the Shari’ah practices of monkeys, to the point that he was able to understand the proceedings of a monkey court and actually participated alongside the monkeys in inflicting the penalty for fornication. Worthy of note is the fact that this occurred during the time of jahiliyya meaning that ‘Amr was endowed with this knowledge whilst he was a kaafir, was he Doctor Doolittle or did he come into contact with Tarzan? If according to this Sunni narration, Allah (swt) can bestow a Kaafir with knowledge of monkey Shari’ah, that neither existed in book form, nor had any Monkey Shari’ah Ulema to convey such teachings, then why the objection if we believe that Allah (swt) bestowed knowledge of past divine scriptures to His (swt) divinely appointed Imams? Islamweb has accused the Shi’a of deeming their Imams God-like on account of their knowledge of the divine scriptures and the languages of those books, could they explain why their greatest Hadith scholar attributed what they would deem God like powers to a kaafir that enabled him to access the Shari’ah of monkeys and with it the language that they spoke?
: The Imam’s knowledge of the unseen
Afriqi seeks to attack the Shi’a with similar references and leaves to the mind of the reader to conclude what opinion they should have of the Shi’a:
Nothing of the knowledge of Heaven, Earth, Jannah and Jahannam is hidden from them. The Kingdom of the Heavens and the Earth was shown to them. They know all that happened and that will happen upto the Day of Resurrection. (22 narrations)
Reply One – Allah (swt) granted knowledge of the unseen to Rasulullah (s)
The original meaning of “Ghayb” in Arabic is “that which has been concealed”, and it is with this meaning which has appeared in the Holy Qur’an (4:34, 12:52, etc.)
The Holy Quran has mentioned Ilm-e-Ghayb in several verses and has declared that this Knowledge is one of the Attributes of Allah. “Say thou, (O Muhammad)! The Knowledge of Unseen belongeth unto Allah alone.” (Surah Yunus, 10:20). See also Surah Ana’m 6:59; Surah Baqarah, 2:33; Surah Hud, 10:31. These verses indicate that the Knowledge of Unseen belongs to Allah Ta’ala Alone. Nobody on his own has this knowledge nor can anybody possess this Divine Treasure. However, these verses have nowhere indicated Allah Ta’ala to say that He does not grant this Knowledge of Unseen to anybody, we do not doubt that the knowledge of the unseen belongs to the Creator and in that there is no doubt but it however also needs to be pointed out that Allah (swt) gives this knowledge to his servants.
“The Knower of the unseen! so He does not reveal His secrets to any, Except to him whom He chooses as a messenger; for surely He makes a guard to march before him and after him”. (Surah Jinn Aayat 26-27)
The level of knowledge that Rasulullah (s) bestowed on his beloved Prophet Muhammad al Mustafa is beyond our comprehension.
Reply Two – The Imams inherited the knowledge of the unseen that had been bestowed on Rasulullah (s)
We read in Sunan Abu Daud Book 35, Number 4231:
Narrated Hudhayfah ibn al-Yaman:
I swear by Allah, I do not know whether my companions have forgotten or have pretended to forgot. I swear by Allah that the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) did not omit a leader of a wrong belief (fitnah)–up to the end of the world–whose followers reach the number of three hundred and upwards but he mentioned to us his name, his father’s name and the name of his tribe.
We read in Sahih Bukhari Volume 8, Book 77, Number 601 and also in Sahih Muslim Book 041, Number 6909:
Narrated Hudhaifa: The Prophet once delivered a speech in front of us wherein he left nothing but mentioned (about) everything that would happen till the Hour. Some of us stored that our minds and some forgot it. (After that speech) I used to see events taking place (which had been referred to in that speech) but I had forgotten them (before their occurrence). Then I would recognize such events as a man recognizes another man who has been absent and then sees and recognizes him
We read in Sahih al Bukhari Volume 9, Book 92, Number 397:
Narrated Anas bin Malik:
The Prophet came out after the sun had declined and offered the Zuhrprayer (in congregation). After finishing it with Taslim, he stood on the pulpit and mentioned the Hour and mentioned there would happen great events before it. Then he said, “Whoever wants to ask me any question, may do so, for by Allah, you will not ask me about anything but I will inform you of its answer as long as I am at this place ofmine.” On this, the Ansar wept violently, and Allah’s Apostle kept onsaying, “Ask Me! ” Then a man got up and asked, ”Where will myentrance be, O Allah’s Apostle?” The Prophet said, “(You will go to)the Fire.” Then ‘Abdullah bin Hudhaifa got up and asked, “Who is myfather, O Allah’s Apostle?” The Prophet replied, “Your father isHudhaifa.” The Prophet then kept on saying (angrily), “Ask me! Askme!” ‘Umar then knelt on his knees and said, “We have accepted Allah as our Lord and Islam as our religion and Muhammad as an Apostle.”Allah’s Apostle became quiet when ‘Umar said that. Then Allah’sApostle said, “By Him in Whose Hand my life is, Paradise and Hell weredisplayed before me across this wall while I was praying, and I never saw such good and evil as I have seen today.”
The last tradition from Sahih al Bukhari demonstrates that the Prophet (s) had knowledge of everything clear from his challenge “Whoever wants to ask me any question, may do so’ this included knowledge of those going to Heaven or Hell. Powers of the unseen were provided to each Prophet in differing amounts. The Holy Quran has mentioned at various places that Allah Ta’ala has granted the Knowledge of Unseen to His exalted Prophets. See Surah Baqarah, 2:31; Surah Baqarah, 2: 251; Surah Naml, 27:16; Surah Ambiya, 21:74; Surah Yusuf, 12:68; Surah Yusuf, 12:96; Surah Qasas, 28:14. Despite this clear evidence, we still see the Imam of Sipah-e-Sahabah, Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi while commenting on the knowledge held by Holy Prophet (s) played it down by stating:
” Such knowledge of the unseen is also possessed not only by a Zaid or an Amar [means anybody] but by the epileptics and the insane, the animals and the beasts as well”
Hifzul Iman, by Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi, page 8
When the Deobandis have such a low thinking of the knowledge of the Prophet (s) how will they be expected to believe that his true successors also possessed such knowledge? We believe the ultimate power of the unseen was provided to the Prophet (s) and then transferred to the Ahl’ul bayt Imams as they were inheritors of the knowledge of the seal of all Prophets i.e Prophet Muhammad (s). In this regards Shi’a sources contain this tradition:
Yahya bin Abdullah asked imam Musa al-Kadhim (as) saying: “May I be made your ransom, they are claiming that you know the Unseen?” He replied: “Glory be to Allah! Put your hand on my head; by Allah there is no hair on it and on my body except that it has been aroused. No, by Allah it is nothing other than the inheritance from the Messenger of Allah(s)”.
1. Sheikh Mufid’s third majlis in his Amali
2. Tafsir Ayyashi Volume 2 page 43
3. Bihar al-Anwar , v.20, pp. 102-103
The Ahl’ul Sunnah has also recognised that the Imams inherited the knowledge of the Prophet (s), renowned Sunni researcher Abu Zuhra in his book ‘Imam Jafar Sadiq’ page 71 wrote about the knowledge of astronomy of the Imams of Ahlylbayt (as):
“This knowledge was granted by Prophet (s) to Hadhrat Ali (ra), was passed on through wills and deposits to each of the twelve Imams who followed him. The sixth of those twelve Imams is Imam Sadiq and his five predecessors were Ali, Hasan, Hussain, Zain ul-Abideen and Baqir (as).”
Imam Jafar Sadiq, page 71 (published in Lahore)
If our opponents have any doubts over the transfer of this type of inheritance then allow us to present a tradition wherein Imam Ali (as) makes an unequivocal declaration of the level of knowledge of the unseens that he possessed, as recorded in Tafsir al-Quran by Imam Abdulrazaq San’ani, Volume 3 page 241:
عبد الرزاق عن معمر عن وهب بن عبد الله عن أبي الطفيل قال : شهدت عليا وهو يخطب وهو يقول سلوني فوالله لا تسألوني عن شئ يكون إلى يوم القيامة إلا حدثتكم به
Abdulrazaq from Mu’amar from Wahab bin Abdullah from Abi al-Tufail who said: ‘I witnessed Ali was addressing and saying: ‘Ask me, by Allah whatever you ask me about till the Day of judgment, I will inform you about it.’
Abdulrazaq San’ani: Ibn Hajar said: ‘Thiqah’ (Taqrib al-Tahdib, v1 p599). Mu’amar bin Rashid: Ibn Hajar said: ‘Thiqah Thabt’ (Taqrib al-Tahdib, v2 p202). Wahab bin Abdullah: Ibn Hajar said: ‘Thiqah’ (Taqrib al-Tahdib, v2 p292). Abu al-Tufail: A Sahabi.
This declaration of Imam Ali (as) is evidently one that proves that he (as) possessed knowledge of the unseen, to such an extent that he had the ability to answer about any matter up until the Day of Judgment, meaning whetever was to happen in the future was an unseen event that the Imam (as) has personal knowledge of, due to his being the true inheritor opf the knowledge of the Prophet (s).
To understand the inheritance of ghayb that had been transferred between the Prophet (s) and his Wasi one needs to only to note the similarity between the two statements, we have Rasulullah (s) declaring “whoever wants to ask me any question, may do so” and Imam Ali (as) likewise declaring “Ask me, by Allah whatever you ask me about till the Day of judgment, I will inform you about it”. The Prophet (s) was endowed with the knowledge of Ghayb through Allah (swt) that was then transferred to Imam Ali (as) via inheritance that thereafter was passed down to each of the Imams.
Allah (swt) undoubtedly holds the keys of Ghayb as stated in the Qur’an, BUT Allah (swt) in other verses makes it clear that Allah (swt) gives this powers to his elects.
We read in Surah Jinn verses 26-27:
“He (alone) knows the Unseen nor does He make any one acquainted with His Mysteries, Except an apostle whom He has chosen: and then He makes a band of watchers march before him and behind him”
In his commentary of this verse Sunni scholar Abdullah Yusuf Ali under footnote 5749 makes these crucial comments:
The Unseen has two aspects. The relative Unseen is so with reference to a particular person, because of the intervention of Time, Space, or particular circumstances. For example, I cannot see today a house which I saw last year, because it has since been pulled down. Or I cannot in Lahore see the “Gateway of India” in Bombay, although any one in Bombay can see it. Or I cannot see the satellites of Jupiter with the naked eye, though I can through a telescope. But the Absolute Unseen, the Absolute Mystery, is something which no creature can know or see, except in so far as Allah reveals it to him. And Allah reveals such things to the extent that is good for men, through His chosen messengers, among whom the greatest is Muhammad. The exact time of the Hour of Judgment has not been so shown, because we must not wait for it, but live as if it is to be at this minute. See last note and next note, and the references there.
So the Absolute Unseen is the sole right of Allah (swt) BUT Allah (swt) delegates this powers to his elect. Yusuf Ali had stated that this knowledge is given to Messengers of Allah (swt), we argue that this favour is also extended to the Imams from Ahl’ul bayt (as) as Allah (swt) has made them Guides over the Ummah.
The Holy Qur’an tells about the knowledge and the intercession of the Prophet Muhammad and his rightful successors that:
“Who can intercede with Him except the cases He permits? He knows what is in front of them and what is behind them, and they encompass nothing of His knowledge except what He will.” (Qur’an 2:255)
We the Shi’a deem this to refer to the Prophet and the Imams. The verse shows that the core/keys of the Knowledge of Ghayb is with Allah, but He may release “a news of Ghayb” to the one He wills.
Reply Three – Allah (swt) grants the Knowledge of unseen to his chosen ones [Awliya] through inspiration and other ways
Now that we have proved that Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) inherited the knowledge of unseen from Prophet (s) being his true successors, we will now shed light on this topic from its second aspect which is also supported by the Ulema of Ahle Sunnah, i.e Allah (swt) grants the Knowledge of unseen to his chosen ones [Awliya] through inspiration (ilhaam) directly or through angels and divine revelation (wahi). The word “wahi” as used in Qur’an can be divided into three categories:
Category One: The first meaning is commonly understood and implied. It means the telling of religious injunctions (or other matters) to the Prophets (as).
Category Two: the transfer of non-sharii (pertaining to the future and other worldly) matters to non-prophets/prophets(as). Such is the example of Maryam(as) and the mother of Musa(as).
Category Three: instinctive revelation as is clear from this verse of Qur’an
“And your Lord revealed to the bee saying: Make hives in the mountains and in the trees and in what they build” [16:68]
The word here used is ‘Uhiya’ and means revelation.
We believe that all revelations pertaining to sharia (i.e. the matters of halaal / haram ordinances in Category One) stopped after the demise of the Prophet(s). The chosen servants of Allah (swt) can receive revelation on matters under category two and three. In this connection we read in Kitab Al Kafi Volume 4 Chapter 3 Hadith 421, Ch. 3, h 1:
A number of our people has narrated from Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn from Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn abu Nasr from Tha‘laba ibn Maymun from Zurara who has said the following
“I asked abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.) about the words of Allah, the Most Holy, the Most High, ‘He was a messenger, a prophet’. What is a messenger and what is a prophet?’” The Imam said, “A prophet is one who sees things in his dream and hears the voice but does not see the angel. The messenger is one who hears the voice, in his dreams and sees the angel.” I then said, “What is the position of the Imam?” The Imam (a.s.) said, “He hears the voice but does not see and observe the angel” Then he recited the following verse of the Holy Quran. ‘Satan would try to tamper with the desires of every Prophet or Messenger or Muhaddith (Muhaddith is a commentary of Imam (a.s.), whom We sent . . .’” (22:52)
Ali ibn Ibrahim has narrated from his father from Isma‘il ibn Marrar who has said the following “Al-Hassan ibn al-‘Abbass al-Ma‘rufi wrote to Imam al-Rida (a.s.). “May Allah take my soul in service for your cause, explain to me the difference between the messengers, the prophets and the Imams.” The Imam said or wrote, ” The difference between the messengers, the prophets and the Imams is that a messenger is one to whom Jibril (Gabriel) comes. He sees Jibril and hears his speech and Jibril (the angel) brings him (Divine) revelation and sometimes he may see in his dream like the dream of Abraham (a.s.). A prophet is one who may hear the speech and may see the person or may not hear. The Imam is the one who hears the speech but does not see the person.”
We Shia believe that Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) are Awliya of Allah (swt) i.e they are the appointed masters over us. We also know that Sunni (with their definition) also deem these prominent figures of Ahlulbayt (as) to be the Awliya infact deem them the superiors of all Awliya. And about the knowledge of unseen granted to Awliya; we read its evidences in prominent Sunni sources under the commentary of the verse (26-27) cited above from Surah Jin viz:
“The Knower of the unseen! so He does not reveal His secrets to any,
Except to him whom He chooses as a messenger; for surely He makes a guard to march before him and after him
Imam Fakhdruddin Razi clearly points out the fact that the cited verse does not restrict anyone else other than the Prophet (s) being able to know the unseen whereas Salafis do not even attribute knowledge of the unseen to the Prophet (s). Razi stated:
‘It must be carefully known that this verse does not mean that nobody else besides the prophet (as) are given knowledge of the unseen. This can be supported from various realities’
Tafseer Kabeer volume 10 page 679
Imam Abul Hasan Ibraahim ibn Umar al-Biqaa’ee, a scholar and commentator of the eighth century and a student of al-Hafiz Imam ibn Hajar al-Asqalani interprets the relevant verse in his esteemed work ‘Tafseer Nazmud-Durar’ as follows:
“(knowledge of the unseen) is taken by an angel and given to whomsoever the angel has been permitted (by Allah). Sometimes, in the form of Wahi (divine revelation) to the prophets (as) and sometimes in the form of inspiration and Ilhaam to the Awliyaa.’
Tafseer Nazmud Dorr volume 10 page 469
Allamah Alauddin Ali ibn Muhammad Baghdadi too openly declares in his Tafseer Khaazin under the above mentioned verse:
‘It is the belief of the Ahle Sunnah Wal Jamah that the miracles of Awliyaa are an established reality as opposed to by the Mu’tazila and that this is permissible [Jaaiz] and possible. It is permissible and possible for Allah Ta’ala to give Ilhaam (inspire) to some of his Awliyaa about some future events.’
Tafseer Khazin volume 6 page 297
Allamah Ahmad ibn Muhammad Saawi Maaliki, a commentator of the twelfth century, states in his famous and most widely accept Tafseer ‘Haashiyatus Saawi’, an explanation to the great Tafseer Jalaalayn:
‘This verse does not defy the miracles performed by the Awliyaa through the power of Kashf. This verse relates to Allah Ta’ala’s informing the prophets through Wahi. This in turn (Wahi) is far more stronger than Allah Ta’ala’s informing his Awliyaa through Ilhaam.’
Haashiyatus Saawi volume 6 page 185
Allaamah Sayyid Mahmood Aalusi Baghdaadi prominent commentator of the twelfth century clearly states that:
“This verse does not contradict the inspiration of the knowledge of unseen to the Awliyah as some of Ahle Suunnah have said”
Tafseer Ruh ul Ma’ani volume 15 page 108
Qadi Thanaullah Pani Pati Uthmani in his estmeed commentary of Quran shed light on this verse in detail:
“The events of the sky to the people of earth, the events of the east to the people west and the events of the west to the people of east are Ghayb [unseen], such kind of knowledge is achieved sometimes via Wahi and Ilhaam while sometimes due to the removal of curtains from in between or when the central veils are purified…”
“The Ahl’ul Sunnaj wa al Jamaah believe that the karamat of Awliyah are in fact the mujiza of the Prophet, Allah (swt) says ‘We sent not a messenger except (to teach) in the language of his (own) people, in order to make (things) clear to them’. Since the Prophet (s) the seal of all Prophets was sent to all people for guidance, therefore, those ulema and Awliyah who become His (s) adherents according to Ahle Sunnah in fact also became His (s) tongue so that Hisr and the condition of communicating with people in their native tongues became correct (verily, the Kamramat that Ulema of ummah and Awliayh of Islam performed are in fact miracles of the Holy Prophet). Now, if the word Rasul [messenger] is accepted to incorporate the word ‘Awliyah’ and Awliyah achieve the knowledge of the unseen as Karamat then there is no problem in it. (Means the knowledge of unseen held by Awliyah is in fact knowledge of the unseen held by the Prophet (s) whilst holding the knowledge of unseen by the Prophet (s) is proven from this verse). But if the Awliyah are not included in the word ‘Rasul’ even then the knowledge of the unseen they hold is not contradictory to this verse”
Tafseer Mazhari, Volume 12 pages 96-97 (Published by Daar ul Ishaat, Karachi)
Imam of Ahl’ul Sunnah, Ibn Hajar Asqalani quoted:
“Qurtubi says that a truthful and pious Muslim is he whose case resembles the case of prophets and he is honoured like prophets with knowledge of the Unseen.”
Fatah ul Bari, Book: Interpretation of Dreams, Hadith 6468
Who are more truthful and pious people beside the Ahlulbayt (as) of Holy Prophet (s)?
Imam of Ahl’ul Sunnah Abdul Hamid Ghazzali in his famed work Ihya Ulum id Din, Volume 3 page 21, commented on the powers bestowed on non Prophets as follows:
‘Know o dear readers that there are different conditions of knowledge which are not all necessary. Some of them fall suddenly in mind called Ilham and some of them are acquired by efforts. Knowledge not acquired by efforts is of two kinds. One kind of such knowledge is not known from where it comes or how it comes. Another kind of such knowledge comes through an angel who throws it into one’s soul. This is called Wahi or revelation. It is revealed only to the prophets. Ilham of the first kind is thrown on the souls of Prophets, as well as other religious personalities. In short, human soul is the place of disclosing truths of all things, but the obstacles earlier stand as screens. Those are screens between Lauhe Mahfuz (Guarded tablet) and the mirror of soul. Picture of everything that will occur upto Resurrection Day have been preserved in this Guarded Tablet. Real condition of every affair is reflected in the mirror of soul. That is like the mirror of soul. That is like the picture in front of a mirror. If there is screen between the two, it is seen in the mirror of soul from the Guarded Tablet. The wind of Latifaor essence sometimes removes the screen from the mirror of soul, so as to disclose what is on the Guarded Tablet. Sometimes the future events can be seen in a dream. By death, all the screens are removed. In wakeful state, sometimes also, sometimes the screen is removed provided secret mercy is showered on soul. Then gusts of knowledge spring forth in soul from unseen things. It lasts for a short time. Ilham and Wahi (inspiration and revelation) cannot be obtained by human will. God says: It is not for a man to talk with God except by means of Wahi or from behind the screen or by means of a messenger who reveals with His permission what He wishes.
Ihya Ulum id Din, Volume 3 pages 21-22
On pages 23-25 he writes:
“Ilham and acquired knowledge: Know, o readers, that the wonderful actions of soul is outside the knowledge gained by the senses as soul is outside the knowledge gained by the senses as soul is outside the knowledge of the senses…
There are four stages of this material world – (1) its existence in the Guarded Tablet before the creation of the world; (2) this material world comes into being according to this plan: (3) the world of ideas follows this material world, and (4) the world of intellect follows this world of ideas, that is its pictures fall in human soul. Some worlds are material and some are immaterial. In the immaterial worlds also, one is more spiritual than another. These are strategy of God. Look at the eye ball. Though it is small the pictures, the pictures of the Heaven and the earth fall in it. Then it comes within ideas and then it falls in soul. Man does not take cognisance of it till it reaches the soul…
So pictures of the world fall in soul sometimes by the help of five senses and sometimes by the help of Guarded Tablet as a picture of the sun falls in the eyes. When obstacles are removed from between soul and Guarded Tablet, soul can see many things and thus knowledge arises therefrom. Then no help of senses is necessary for such knowledge. It is just like the gushing forth of water from the deep bottom of a well.
Two doors of soul: One door of soul is open towards the spiritual world which is the world of angels and the Guarded Tablet. Another door of soul is open towards the five senses and is connected with the material world. The former door open to the spiritual world can be better understood from dreams in which one can see some matters of future and past events. One can tell them without the necessity of knowledge gained from his five senses. The door is open to one who remains engaged in solitude in remembrance of God. The Prophet said: The dwellers of solitude have proceeded. He was asked ‘O Prophet of God who are the dwellers of solitude? He said: ‘Those who have been made pure by the remembrance of God, those whose burdens have been taken down by the remembrance of God and those who will come on the Resurrection Day free of burdens. Then he described their virtues and read these words of God: I kept my face in their front. Do you know in whose front I have kept my face? Does anybody know what I will give them? Then God says ‘First I throw light in their souls. As a result they broadcast the news they get from Me’.
Ihya Ulum id Din volume 3, pages 23-25
Beloved Imam of Salafies/Wahabies; Ibn Taymiyah in his famous Majmo’a Fatawa, Volume 11 page 173 states:
‘Miracles (of the Awliyaa) sometimes occur by a person hearing something that others can’t, sometimes a person sees something that others don’t whilst awake or in a dream, sometimes a person is given knowledge of something which others don’t know about through Wahi (revelation) or Ilhaam (inspiration)… this is called Kashf and Mushahadaat..’
The above cited esteemed Sunni commentaries/statements will help naïve Muslims to guard themselves from the filthy propaganda of the Wahabi/Salafi who assert that the knowledge of unseen is possessed by Allah (swt) alone and that He (swt) doesn’t grant it to anyone, these narrow minded people are clearly ignorant of the beliefs of mainstream Sunni scholars which is the antithesis of their views.
As we know that Sunnies (with their definition) also deem these prominent figures of Ahl’ul bayt (as) to be the Awliya infact deem them superior to all Awliya evidenced by the words of Imam Rabbani from his precious work ‘Maktubaat’(9:17 # 123) wherein he clearly stated the twelve Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) were not just Awliya Allah but that Maula Ali (as) was the leader and chieftain of all Awliya and whosoever has received the divine blessing and guidance, has received it through him (as). Sunni traditions also affirm this fact, Imam of Ahl’ul Sunnah Abu Naeem Isfahani in his esteemed work Hilayath al Awliya, Volume 1, Page 66-67, records this Hadeeth on the authority of the Sahabi Abu Burdah:
”Verily Allah (swt) said ‘Ali is the Flag of Guidance, Imam of the Saints, and the Light of Truth for those that follow me”
Hilayat al Awliya, Volume 1, Page 66-67
With such sacred ranks, it is quite obvious that the Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) fall with the criteria of Awliyah about whom the above cited Sunni scholars attributed inspiration or received revelations of the unseen. This is in conformity with a comment of Imam Jafar Sadiq (as):
“Ahmad ibn Muhammad has narrated from Muhammad ibn al-Hassan from Ahmad ibn a1-Hassan ibn Ali from ‘Amr ibn Sa‘id from Musaddiq ibn Sadaqa from ‘Ammar al-Sabati who has said that he asked abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.) the following. “Does the Imam have the knowledge of the hidden facts?” The Imam (a.s.) said, “No, he does not have such knowledge but if he would like to know about a thing Allah grants him such knowledge.”
Usool al-Kafi, Kitab al- Hujjah, Tradition #666
We can therefore see that the Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) get access to knowledge of the unseen from Allah (swt) either in the form of inheritance from the Holy Prophet (as) being his true successors or their rank provides them with inspiration or indirectly from Allah (swt) through angels (etc). Now the type of knowledge and the manner in which it is granted to them is between them and Allah (swt) as is the extent of that knowledge, we are only sure that Allah (swt) grants them knowledge of whatever He (swt) wishes. If Nawasib object to this notion questioning how such knowledge can be planted into an Imam (as) when he needs it, then we will say that it was through exactly the same mechanism that Allah (swt) endowed our Prophet (s) with knowledge. There exist two methods for attaining of knowledge:
- That which you learn by seeing / learning from others / attaining knowledge – e.g. driving a car.
- That which is placed within the soul of an individual, e.g. knowledge of thirst and hunger is linked to one’s soul, you don’t depend on others to sense what you feel, and it is connected exclusively with that individual and is linked to his soul. This is the type of knowledge that we believe that descended upon our blessed Prophet (s), if he needed to know something it would be delivered in his soul. We likewise believe that if the Imams as the inheritors of the knowledge of the Prophet (s) were in need of guidance to explain a matter, then Allah (swt) likewise endowed that knowledge into their souls.
If Nawasib find this belief objectionable do they not believe that Imam Mahdi (as) will receive revelation from Allah (swt) that He is the Mahdi? Will he (as) not have direct communication with Allah (swt)? If believing that Imams (as) can have direct communication with Allah (swt) is an exclusive right of Prophets, then what do they say of Imam Mahdi (as)?
Reply Four – Knowledge unravels the secrets of the hidden
It’s the knowledge of something hidden. Hidden can be in several ways. Something you can’t:
Something beyond your understanding can also constitute Ghayb (hidden) its beyond your comprehension. We shall cite an example:
You present a young child with a line in Arabic, he can’t read Arabic for him its Ghayb, hidden its beyond his comprehension.
You present a second child with that same line, he can read it, why? Because he has read Arabic, but if you ask him to interpret the MEANING he cannot, he can read but not understand the words, for this child the meaning is Ghayb.
You present the same line to someone who has studied Tafseer of the Qur’an, he can read it, translate it and even provide a commentary to it.
Same line three different responses. What is Ghayb to one person is not Ghayb to another, how are the keys of Ghayb unlocked via Ilm (Knowledge). We had previously cited that Rasulullah (s) mentioned 5 forms of Ghayb that were the exclusive domain of Allah (swt). These have been similarly cited in Sahih al Bukhari, Kitab al Tauheed Volume 9, Book 93, Number 476:
Narrated Ibn Umar:
The Prophet said, “The keys of the unseen are five and none knows them but Allah: (1) None knows what is in the womb, but Allah: (2) None knows what will happen tomorrow, but Allah; (3) None knows when it will rain, but Allah; (4) None knows where he will die, but Allah (knows that); (5) and none knows when the Hour will be established, but Allah.”
Whilst we have shall prove the ghayb in category 4 was given to Rasulullah (s), we know that the other exemptions have been unraveled through the increased acquisition of scientific knowledge. For, No. 1, does not modern science give the doctors enough technology to know this? Scans take place wherein doctors can inform parents of the sex of their child before it is born. Science has advanced to the point that doctors can even create the sex of a child.
For, No. 5, is not the weather man able to predict the coming of rain with almost accuracy?
‘is knowledge of tomorrow’s weather not Ghayb? Is it not hidden?’ This being the case how is it that science has developed to such an extent that weather reports can tell us the weather, temperatures etc, not just tomorrow but for the entire week? We can find out the time of the sun rise / sunset and the timings of an eclipse days before they occur. These forms of ghayb have unlocked via knowledge. If the keys of Ghayb can be unlocked by normal fallible scientists (to some extent and that too by Allah’s will), don’t you think Allah (swt) would also equip his representatives, messengers, Imams to the keys of Ghayb on a bigger level? In the same way that knowledge has unlocked these hidden secrets to those with knowledge Allah revealed far greater knowledge to the city of knowledge and its gate?
It is here that we shall cite the comments of Dr. Tahir ul Qadri from his booklet Hub-e-Ali (ra) pages 19-21:
The Prophet (s) said ‘I am the City of Knowledge and ‘Ali is its Gate [Sharh Mishkaath Volume 4 page 666, Sawaqih al Muhriqa page 418, taken from Tabrani and Hakim].
Why did the Prophet deem himself the City of knowledge? The Prophet was in effect the Qur’an and the Qur’an is the City of knowledge, city refers to that place wherein you can find everything. You cannot call a dstrict, town or village a city, you can find some things from here but not find others. City refers to that place wherein you can locate whatever you are looking for. That place wherein you can locate everything is called a city. Since you can locate all knowledge from the Qur’an, it is the city of knowledge, and since Musatafa (s) is the speaking Qur’an he is the city of knowledge.
With Him are the keys of the unseen, the treasures that none knoweth but He. He knoweth whatever there is on the earth and in the sea. Not a leaf doth fall but with His knowledge: there is not a grain in the darkness (or depths) of the earth, nor anything fresh or dry (green or withered), but is (inscribed) in a record clear (to those who can read).
A miracle of the Qur’an is the two words dry and wet are two words that in effect incorporate the entire knowledge of the world. This is just about a leaf if you observe from the skies through to the depths of the universe, entities are either living or non living, there is no third species. Those living things are wet, those without life are dry.
Surah al Anbiya.030
Do not the Unbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were joined together (as one unit of creation), before we clove them asunder? We made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe?
All living things are made of water, all dead things are dry. Every living and dead thing is in the Qur’an, from the time that life / death existed, until life / death continues, all will remain in the Qur’an, and the speaking Qur’an is Mustafa (s), that is why the Prophet is the City of knowledge for all the world from start till the end, and whoever from the start until then, wishes to enter the knowledge of the world, he cannot enter without the permission of ‘Ali. Whenever you visit a city, house or town and you refer to a door, the door in effect represents a wall boundary. To enter via some other method, such as by climbing over the wall is prohibited. If the wall does not act as a boundary then there is no meaning of a door. The door means that there are wall boundaries everywhere and the Prophet (s) said that Allah (swt) made me the city of knowledge of the world, and since knowledge is treasure, such treasure is kept safe, anyone that wishes to attain that knowledge cannot do so without entering the door of ‘Ali, otherwise he will be unable to attain the treasure of Mustafa”
Hub-e-Ali (ra) pages 19-21
When Maula Ali is the door of the City of knowledge then all knowledge that Rasulullah (s) possessed, including the knowledge of the unseen was likewise possessed by him.
Reply Five – Those with a knowledge of the Book can unlock the secrets of Ghayb
The keys to the Ghayb are provided by Allah (swt) to those who have attained a knowledge of the Book. The Holy Qur’an mentions that at the time of Prophet Solomon (Sulayman), a person in the name of Asaf, who was the Minister of Solomon and had only a very small part of “the Knowledge of the Book”, was able to bring the throne of Queen Bilqis from another place of the world within the twinkling of an eye:
“The One with whom was just a part of the Knowledge of the Book said: ‘I shall bring it to you within the twinkling of an eye!’ Then when (Solomon) saw (the throne) set in his presence, he said: ‘This is by the grace of my Lord! to test me whether I am grateful or ungrateful!’” (Qur’an 27:40).
Here a non Prophet was able to transport the throne that was Ghayb (hidden), and bring it before Sulayman (as).
As stated in Verse 27:40 of Qur’an, the one who possessed a small part of “the Knowledge of the Book”, was able to unlock Ghayb and bring the throne of King Bilqis from another place of the world within the twinkling of an eye. So those who have the whole “Knowledge of the Book” should be able to do more. In that, there is no doubt, because Allah (swt) says in Surah Naml verse 75:
“And there is nothing concealed (Ghayb) in the heaven and the earth that is not contained in this Book” - look at the Arabic not the watered down translations! All Ghayb is contained in the Book, so he who has knowledge of the inner and outer meanings of the Qur’an can also attain the power of Ghayb.
We will now allow Allamah Dr. Tahir Qadri al Hanafi to expand on matters further in Hub-e-Ali, pages 27-28:
“Hadhrat Abdulah ibn Masud said ‘Allah revealed the Qur’an in different dialects and with every recitation, with every verse and every letter there in an outer and inner meaning [Tareekh ul Khulafa page 258-259, Ibn Asaakir and others
Amongst the Sahaba there is on e individual Hadhrat Ali Lion of Allah who posses divine knowledge of the inner and outer meanings of the Qur’an, this was not just the view of the Sahaba ‘Ali also attested to this station
"Ask me about the Book of Allah, because there is no Ayah but that I know whether it was revealed at night in someone’s house or in portions during the day” [Arjahu al Muttalib page 143]
Night means late, at times when the Prophet (s) would be with his wives in their apartments, this was a time when verses were revealed, yet ‘Ali knew when verses were revealed in the day night, or in whose house, and at another time ‘Ali said:
I swear by Allah there no verse that was revealed, about which I don’t have knowledge of, on the reason for its revelation, where it was revealed and in whose honour” [Yanabi al Mawaddah page 459]
Hub-e-Ali (ra), pages 27-28
Also, worthy of note is this reference from Mansab-e-Imamate, page 105 by the great Imam of the Deobandis Shah Ismail Shaheed:
“Imamate is the Shadow of the Prophethood. The Imam’s leadership is openly declared. Whereas history provides evidence of Saints that remained silent, the Imam announces whatever powers he possesses as Ameer al Momineen Ali Murtuza (ra) did when he declared ‘I am the Siddiq al Akbar (The Great Truthful One) and whoever declares this after me is a liar and I am the talking Qur’an”.
Mansab Imamate, page 105
Reply Six – Some incidents from Sunni texts about the knowledge of Unseen held by Imams of Ahl’ulbayt (as)
If Nasibi are trying to tell their followers that its only the Shias who believed in the Imams of Ahlylbait (as) having knowledge of Unseen then they need to enlighten their followers about such incidents recorded and attested by Sunni ulema as well.
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi who has been the student of various renowned Sunni scholars like Sheikh ul Hadith Molana Owais Hasan known as Ghulam Jeelani Aazami, Maulana Hikmatullah Amrohvi, and Maulana Muhammad Khaleel Chishti in Madrissa-e-Mohammdia Hanafia Amroha (India) and has been involved in religious teaching in various madrssas like Madrissa-e-Ishaqia Jodhpur Rajhistan in 1356 A.H, Madrissa-e-Muhammadia Hanafia and Daar ul-Uloom Ashrafia Mubarakpur and remained as President and Sheikh ul Hadith in ‘Daar ul Uloom Manzar-e-Haq’ Faizabad U.P (India) has written a complete book namely “Karamaat e Sahabah” wherein he quoted miracles held by some 100 Sahabah and on the same basis he also told his followers not to side by Shia for they denounce some of the Sahabah.
The beloved figure among Deoband school, Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi too wrote a book with the same name i.e. ‘Karamaat e Sahabah’ which contain his collection of the miracles of Sahabah.
Imam Ali (as) foretold a person about the nature of his death
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi quotes the following incident in his book:
“A person came before Ali (ra). He (ra) told him about his life happenings and told him that he would be hanged to death at such and such tree. Therefore whatever Ali(ra) had foretold about that person proves to be true and his prediction was completed. (Shawahid un Nabuwat, page 162)”.
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 89 (Published by Mushtaq Book Corner, Urdu Bazar, Lahore)
Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi has also recorded Maula Ali (as)’s prediction about his own death from different ways in his version of ‘Karamaat e Sahabah’.
Karamaat e sahabah, by Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi, page 42-43
Imam Hassan (as) foretold the birth of a child to one of his follower
Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi also quotes:
“Imam Hassan was walking to go for Hajj, during his journey he stopped at a place. There one of his followers came and said: “I am your servant. My wife is suffering from labour pain, please supplicate for a healthy baby boy”. Imam Hassan replied: “Return your home, Allah has already given you a boy of the type you wished and this son will be our follower”. When the man reached his home he became extremely happy to see that Allah had given him a son just like Imam Hassan (ra) had predicted. (Shawahid un Nabuwat, page 172).”
Karamaat e Sahabah by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 189 & 190
Imam Taqi (as) gave news of the unseen at a young age
For this we shall rely on the following two esteemed Sunni sources:
1. Shawahid al Nubuwwa page 205, Bab Dhikr Imam Muhammad Taqi
2. Sawaiqh al Muhriqa, Page 682 & 683, Dhikr ‘Ali Raza
Imam Ibn Hajar Makki in his anti Shia book records:
”Mamun Abbasid went hunting, left an eagle and it went missing from his sight. When the eagle returned it carried a fish in his beak. Mamun placed the fish in his handkerchief. On his return children of Baghdad were playing on the road, when they saw him they ran off save one boy. Mamun asked “Tell what is in my hand?”. He said “God from his creations has created fish in the sea, some Kings hunt them with eagles and via them the family of the Prophet is tested”.
Sawaiq al-Muhriqa, Page 682 & 683
Reply Seven- Sunnis have attributed knowledge of the Unseen to their caliphs and Ulema
It is sheer injustice on the part of the Nawasib who object to Shia beliefs that the Imams of Ahlulbait (as) being the successors of the knowledge of the Holy Prophet (s) possessed such knowledge when their books contain various incidents which show that according to Sunni belief their caliphs selected by a group of people were also able to give the news of unseen.
Sunnis believe that Abu Bakr foretold the gender of a child in the womb and knew when he would die
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi while counting the miracles possessed by Abu Bakr quoted the following Hadith from Tarikh e Khulfa, page 57 to prove that Abu Bakr was able to foretell the gender of the baby in womb.
“Hadhrat Urwah bin Zubair (ra) narrates that Ameer al Momineen Abu Bakr (ra) during his illness while narrating his ‘will’ to his daughter Umul Momineen Hadrath Ayesha (ra) said: “Dear daughter, whatever has been my wealth, today has become the wealth of my heirs and my heirs include both of your brothers i.e Abdur Rehman and Muhammad and both of your sisters, therefore you people should divide my wealth according to the Quranic injunctions and take your respective shares”. Hadrath Ayesha (ra) said: “I have only one sister i.e Asma, who is my second sister?”. Abu Bakar (ra) replied: “My wife Bint Kharja who is pregnant is bearing a girl in her womb, she is your second sister”. That is what happened and a girl was born and she was named Umul Kulthoom. (Tarikh e Khulfa, page 57)”
Karamaat e Sahabah by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 46 (Published by Mushtaq Book Corner, Urdu Bazar, Lahore)
Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi then quotes the comments of ulema about the Hadith on page 46 of his book:
“Allamah Tajuddin Subki [rh] has stated that two miracles of Ameer al Momineen Abu Bakr (ra) are proven from this Hadith.
. That he had come to know before his death that he would leave the world due to the illness he was suffering from that is why he stated in his will “My wealth has become the wealth of my heirs”.
. whether there was a boy or a girl in the womb of the pregnant lady. And obviously the knowledge of these two things is the knowledge of Ghayb [unseen] these are no doubt two main Karamaat of the successor of the Holy Prophet(s). (Izalatul Khifa, vol 2 page 21 & Hujatullah, vol 2 page 860).”
Karamaat e Sahabah by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 46
Maulana Mustufa Aazmi then clarifies that it does not in any way negate the verse of the Holy Qur’an wherein Allah (swt) says that He is the only one who knows about the womb as surely He is the sole knowledgeable but some people also get to know about it when Allah (swt) makes them know. It is very strange that the (so called) successor of Holy Prophet (s) selected by some people can have the knowledge of Ghayb but if we believe that Imam Ali (as) and other Imams of Ahulbait (as) who according to our belief are the true inheritors of the knowledge of Quran and divinely appointed successor of Holy Prophet (s) can perform miracles then the Nasibism of our opponent is exhibited.
Umar was able to foresee a calamity hidden behind a mountain
Ibn Tamiyah Imam of the Wahabies / Salafies records the following:
“Umar ibn Al Khattab once sent out an army and assigned a man named Sariah as its leader. Whilst Umar was giving a khutbah he shouted out while still on the Minbar: O Sariah the mountain! Later a scout from the army came to Madina. When Umar asked him the news of the army, he said, O Leader of the believers, we met the enemy and were being defeated. Suddenly there was someone screaming: O Sariah the mountain! So we put our backs to the mountain, then Allah defeated them.
This is narrated with a good i.e. Hassan chain of narration”
The criterion by Ibn Tamiyah, page 145
Allamah Jalaluddin Suyuti also records this in
Tarikh ul Khulafa page 123 Chapter “The miracles of Umar”
Umar according to this narration has powers of Ghayb, he can foresee a calamity about to befall his army, despite the fact that its hidden from his eyes.
Uthman was able to tell the hidden intentions of the people
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi records the following incident in his book:
“Allamah Tajuddin Subki [rh] has stated in his book ‘Tabaqat” that a person while in journey stared at an unknown woman with bad intentions. That man came before Ameer al Momineen Uthman (ra). On seeing that person, Ameer al Momineen in a very furious tone said: “You people come to me in such a situation where your eyes have the signs of adultery”. The aforesaid person said: “Has revelation been started to come on you after Prophet (s)?. How did you come to know that my eyes contain signs of adultery?”. Ameer al Momineen (ra) replied: “I do not receive any revelation but what I have said is truth and Allah has bestowed me such a power that I am able to read the intentions of the people in their heart”. (Hujatullah alal Alimeen, vol 2 page 862 and Izalatul Khifa, vol 2 page 227).”
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 71 (Published by Mushtaq Book Corner, Urdu Bazar, Lahore)
Maulana Rasheed Ahmad Gangohi knew the intention that his follower kept in his heart
It is amusing that the foolish ones among the Deobandi school such as Manzoor Numani whilst confidently attacking the Shi’a for believing that their Imams possessed knowledge of the unseen have abandoned the very belief which they hold for their own Ulema. We read in an esteemed Deobandi work Tazkirat ar-Rasheed:
“One morning whilst going to see Hazrat (Rasheed Ahmad Gangohi), Moulvi Wali Muhammad passed by a sweets (confectionery) shop, where some fresh sweets were being prepared. He stood there for a while thinking that if he had money, he could buy some sweets. He then headed straight for the Khanqah (hermitage), where he found Hazrat (Rasheed Ahmad Gungohi) waiting for him. Upon seeing him, Hazrat said, ‘Moulvi Wali Muhammad, Today I wish to eat sweets, so take these four annas (some money) and fetch me some sweets of your choice’. So, Wali Muhammad bought some sweets from the same shop and kept them in front of Hazrat. Hazrat said, ‘It is my hearts desire that you should eat these sweets’. Moulvi Wali Muhammad used to say after this incident, ‘I feel afraid in meeting Hazrat because the intentions in the heart are not within one’s control and Hazrat gets informed about them.”
Tazkirat ar-Rasheed, Volume 2 page 227 (Published in Lahore)
Maulana Rao Abdur Rahman Khan (Deobandi) was able to see the face of the unborn children
Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi records the knowledge of unseen held by one of their revered scholars:
Maulana Habib ur Rehman stated that Rao Abdur Rehman Khan was the caliph of Shah Abdur Reheem in Punjab and was a man of extreme Kashf. The extent of his Kashf was that when someone used to come to him in order to get a Taweez [amulet] for the birth of boy or girl, he used to say spontaneously: “Just go, for you will have a boy” or “you will have a girl”. People asked: ‘How do you tell this?”. He replied: “What shall I do, the face of the unborn child just comes before me”.
Arwah Thalasah, page 181 (Daarul Ishaat, Karachi).
Deobandi elder Khuwaja Abu Muhammad predicts the arrival of a learned male heir from the womb of a woman that was hitherto unmarried
Deobandi Imam Shaykh ul Hadeeth Maulana Muhammad Zakaria mentions the following with regards to one of the elders of the Deobandi clergy, namely Khuwaja Abu Muhammad:
“Khuwaja Abu Muhammad’s sister was also extremely pious and was occupied with remembering Allah all the time as a result of which she was never inclined to getting married. One day Khuwaja Abu Muhammad came to her and said: ‘O sister, the existence of a boy from your womb has been destined who will at one time become the Qutb al-Aqtab and this is not possible without marriage, therefore get married’.
Tarikh Mashaaikh Chisht, page 156 (Majlis Nashriyat Islam, Karachi)
Our challenge to Nawasib to abandon the Sunni faith on account of their beliefs about knowledge of the unseen
“The Imams have knowledge of whatever occurred in the past and whatever will happen in the future, and nothing is concealed from them” (Ibid, p. 260.) Subhanallah!! Only Allah knows the future for any person to say that these Imams know the Unseen is committing Shirk and takes himself outside Islam.
We have already proved that Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) know the unseen being the inheritors of the inner and outer knowledge of Holy Quran which contain everything and this is what told in the tradition of al-kafi and It would have been better if this hatred filled website had cited the complete tradition which is as follows:
Narrated from Abu Abdillah (as), He said: “I know that is in the skies and the earth, and I know what is in the heaven and the hell, and that has happened or will happen. Then he kept silent so that to know what people will think about it. And then said, I have some to know about all these from Quran as Allah says that there is the knowledge of everything in it.”
If attributing powers of the unseen to anyone save Allah (swt) is an act of shirk and takes you out of the pale of Islam, then clearly this Nasibi author needs to practice what he preaches and should accordingly issue Takfeer against al Bukhari, Muslim, Qadhi Iyad, Suyuti and Ibn Tamiyah whose pens attributed powers of the unseen to Rasulullah (s) and the first three Khalifas. Why is it the same pen that without hesitation quickly issues Takfeer against such Shi’a traditions that that attribute these powers to the the Ahl’ul bayt, fail to issue the same verdict to the Sunni Ulema who attributed these powers to your Salaf king pins? Justice would dictate that if the Shi’a belief that their Imams possessed a knowledge of the unseen proves that they are kaafir, the Ahl’ul Sunnah should likewise fall into this Takfeer umbrella for believing the same about their Khalifas. Clearly Islamweb need to distance themselves from this deviant Sunni Sect and their Ulema. This leaves the Nasibis from Islamweb with accepting one of two options:
Option One: Both Sunni and Shi’a Sects have committed shirk and are outside Islam because they have attributed powers of the unseen to their Imams
Option One: Both Suni and Shi’a believe that Allah (swt) can bestow powers of the unseen on his Servants, such a belief is in complete conformity with Islam, and cannot be deemed an act of Shirk.
If these Nasibis choose to adopt option one, then they will have a religious duty to distance themselves from the Sunni Sect and condemn their Ulema. They will be forced out to come out and admit what we already know, that they are not Sunnis, rather they are Nasibis portraying themselves as Sunnis.
Option two would be the right thing to do, since these Nasibis have accused the Shi’a of believing something that the Sunnis themselves believe. They have either done this through a general ignorance of their own believe (which is unlikely) or simply to create Fitnah. Now that we have exposed the reality, namely that both Sects believe that man can possess knowledge of the unseen, then Islamweb need to go on record, acknowledge their error and apologise to the Shi’a for attributing such lies to them. Should Islamweb’s position remain the same, then we can safely conclude that this team are hypocrites of the highest order.
: The Imams are the masters of this world and the next
The Imams are the lords of the world and the Hereafter. They can grant whatever they like to anyone:In section al-Hujjah of Usul-e-Kafi there is a chapter entitled: “The whole earth is the property of the Imam (Peace be upon him)”. In it, it is stated that once replying to one of the questions of Abu Basir, Imam Jafar Sadiq remarked: “Do you not know that this world and the world Beyond belong to the Imam. He can grant whatever he likes to anyone”. (p. 259).
Allah, (swt) says:
“The earth is Allah’s. He gives it as a heritage to whom He will, and the good end is for the righteous servants.” (Quran 7:128).
Those whom Allah (swt) favours inherit the earth. We deem this verse to refer to those that Allah (swt) has chosen as his successors they inherit the Prophet’s teachings and the earth. To further strengthen our stance we also will advance Sunni texts demonstrating the mastership of Ahl’ul lbayt (as) over whole universe. Khuwajah Mehboob Qasim Chishti Qadri records:
“It is narrated by Abu Huraira that Rasul (saww) said, when Allah (swt) created Adam (as), and when the soul entered his body, Adam (as) looked towards the garden of heaven and saw five bright faces. Adam (as) was amazed that they were prostrating towards Allah (swt). Adam (as) asked Allah (swt), that who are these five faces who are like me? Allah (swt) said, that all of these five will be from your progeny, but as you are made from clay, they are created from my Divine Nur. And I have created the entire creation for them only and their names are from My Names.
That is I am Mahmood and he is Muhammad, I am Alaa and he is Ali, I am Fatir and she is Fatima, I am Ahsaan and he is Hassan and I am Mohsin and he is Hussain….”
Musharaf ul Mahbubeen, page 411 (Published in Calcutta)
There is a very similarly worded narration to this on the authority of Abu Hurraira in Faraid al Simthayn Volume 1 page 36 [Beirut] and Arjahu al Muttalib page 575 by Abdullah Amitsari, citing Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani with a chain upto Abu Hurraira.
Anyone with even a basic knowledge of history will know that one of the titles of Ali bin Abi Talib (as) was Abu Turab, bestowed on him by the Prophet (s). Maulana Waheed’udeen Zaman explains this this title as follows in his esteemed book Lughaat ul Hadith:
“He was called Abu Turab because he is the Chief of the whole earth and a proof of Allah for those that live on it”
Lughaat ul Hadith, Kitab ‘Tay, Thay’ page 9
As for the Imams being Lords in the next world, there is no doubt that Allah (swt) is the Master over everything including our lives, children homes etc. He (swt) however can grants the power of Mastership to his Servants, if Allah (swt) has granted such a position on the Day of Judgment, then this is evidenced from Sunni Hadith on the authority of Abu Sa’id Khudri:
The Messenger of Allah said: “Al-Hasan and al-Husain are the chiefs of the youth of Paradise.”
1. Sahih Tirmidhi, vol 5 page 656 Hadith 3768 (called it Hasan Sahih)
2. Haythami has called it Sahih in Majma Zawaid, Vol 9 page 20
3. Ibn Haban in his ‘Sahih’, Vol 15 page 416 Hadith 2959
4. Musnad Ahmed bin Hanbal,Vol 3 page 3 Hadith 11012
5. Musnaf Ibn Abi Shybah, vol 6 page 378 Hadith 3276
6. Al Mujam al Awsat al Tabarani, vol 6 page 347 Hadith 5644
7. Mustadrak al Hakim, Vol 3 page 182 Hadith 4778
8. Maward uz Zaman by Haythami, Vol 1 page 551 Hadith 2228
9. Sunan Nisai, Vol 5 page 50 Hadith 8169
10. Dur al Manthur, Vol 5 page 489
11. Khasais al Ali by Nasai, Vol 1 page 46 Hadith 129
If Imam Sadiq (as) said ‘this world and the world Beyond belong to the Imam’ it is in accordance with the fact that Allah (swt) has bestowed such a rank for them in this world and the next.
If you own some thing then you are entitled to brand your name to that possession, making it clear that it belongs to you. You can for example place your name at the front of your house; this will inform passers by of two things:
- The name of the owner
- Provide named details of whose consent will be required to enter lawfully enter the property. You cannot enter of your own avail, if the owners refuse entry; you stay outside the precincts of the property.
With such high ranks in the next world is it little wonder that the Egyptian scholar Allamah Muhammad Abdurauf bin Ali bin Zain’ulAbdeen al-Munawi in his book Sayyidathun Nisa il Janna, [wherein he narrated 50 Hadeeth in honor of Sayyida Fatima (as)] records this Hadeeth on the authority of Ibn Abbas on page 76:
“When I went on Miraaj I saw written on the pillars of Heaven, There is no God but Allah, Muhammad is his Messenger, ‘Ali is the friend of Allah, Hasan and Husayn are the close friends of Allah and Fatima is the beloved of Allah”
Sayyida tun-Nisa al-Jannah, Page 76
Of interest is the fact that one of the legendary scholars of Manzoor Naumani’s own school Shah Ismaeel Shaheed Dehalvi also stated as follows on this issue:
“People holding this lofty station (Awliyah of Allah) have full power to make use of things in the ideal world as also in the world that is evident. These people with vast powers and knowledge arc entitled to hold the view that everything in the universe is connected with them. For example, if such people say that their kingdom extends from the earth to the heavens, they would be justified in saying so.”
Siraat e Mustaqeeem, page 101 (published by Matba’i mujtaba’i, Delhi)
Do we need to say more after this brief yet comprehensive view offered by Shah Ismaeel Shaheed on the topic of mastership of the Awliyah over the worlds?
: Miracles bestowed on the Imams
The Imams can bring the dead back to life. They can cure blindness and leprosy.
They possess all the miracles of the Ambiya’ (4 narrations)
Reply One – Understanding the concept of Miracles (Mu’jizaat)
Mu’jiza in religious terminology refers to a supernatural act or performance that an ordinary person cannot humanly perform in normal circumstances, but Allah (swt) using his divine authority and power executes it through his chosen and special people in order to prove their truthfulness and esteemed status.
The Ahl’ul Sunnah have taken Mu’jiza in the above expressed definition, but they have attributed it to the Prophets exclusively, whereas nowhere in the Quran has this term been used for the supernatural attributes of Allah (swt), and neither has it been narrowed to be used for the Prophets (as) exclusively.
The Qur’an provides two clear examples of miracles possessed by non Prophets. We have previously cited the first example, wherein an adherent of Prophet Sulayman (as) with a partial knowledge of the Book was able to move the throne of Bilqis within the twinking of an eye. The second example concerns the provision of food for Maryam (as) by Allah (swt), as we read Surah Aal-e-Imran verse 37:
Right graciously did her Lord accept her: He made her grow in purity and beauty: To the care of Zakariya was she assigned. Every time that he entered (Her) chamber to see her, He found her supplied with sustenance. He said: “O Mary! Whence (comes) this to you?” She said: “From Allah: for Allah Provides sustenance to whom He pleases without measure
If we attribute miracles to non Prophet representatives of Allah (swt) it cannot be deemed as a belief against the seal of Prophethood, but out of ignorance and stupidity Afriqi the Nasibi is seeking to infer just that; even though no religious argument or proof is available to prove that this term can be used for the Prophets (as) solely. The Sunni Ulema have stated:
“Mu’jiza is that event that occurs against the normal at the hands of a Prophet, or a supernatural “Karamat” that occurs at the hands of a Wali.”
Al-Nabraas, Sharah-e-Sharah-e-Aqaid, page 430 & 475.
It means that the if the supernatural act is performed by a Prophet, the Sunnis call it Mu’jiza, and if it is performed by a Wali, it is termed as Karamat, therefore it is completely biased to produce separate terminologies and then distinguish the same act on the basis of those terminologies only and then issue takfir on others for not adopting the new terminology which infact means exactly the same as terminology one!
In the Holy Quran, anyone bestowed with such supernatural acts, whether he be a Prophet (as) or Wali, is referred to with the term ‘Ayat’, ‘Bayanaat, or ‘Sultan-al-Mubeen’. If Afriqi bothered reading the Holy Quran, he would recognise that the Qur’an and Ahl’ul Bayt (as) are interconnected; therefore it is not possible to understand the Qur’an whilst leaving aside the Ahl’ul Bayt (as).
Mullah Ali Qari in this connection says:
“Aayat refer to supernatural acts, which are called Mu’jizaat, and termed as Karamaat for the Awliya. A Mu’jiza is a supernatural event, such as bringing the dead back to life, and Karamat is a supernatural event.”
Sharah Fiqh al-Akbar, page 94, published in Karachi
Mu’jiza and Karamat are two names of the same thing, which have been separately classified by some Mullahs without any justification, although both of them have been termed as “Aayat” in the Holy Quran.
Mullah Ali Qari has stated that the same supernatural act when performed by a Prophet is Mu’jiza, and when performed by a Wali is called Karamat, in which the first example that he has provided is that of bringing a dead back to life, then he goes on to further say:
“The statement of Imam-al-‘Azam in this regard concurs with the view of the majority Ulema of Islam, that an act that can be a Mu’jiza for a Prophet, can legitimately be a Karamat for a Wali.”
Sharah Fiqh al-Akbar, page 96.
Beloved Imam of the salafies; Ibn Tamiyah in Majmo’a al-Fatawa, Volume 3 page 156 stated:
Among the fundamentals of the people of the Sunnah and the Community is the belief in the miracles of the saints (Karamat al- Awliya): Allah created supernatural acts through them in all aspects of life, revelations (Mukashafat), power, and impressions. This is known of ancient nations in Surat al-Kahf (chapter 18) and in other Qur’anic chapters and is known of the early men of this ‘Ummah amongst the Sahabah and the Tabi’un and amongst the rest of the generations of this ‘Ummah. It will be with them to the Day of Resurrection.
Ibn Arabi explains the concept of miracles as follows:
One type of miracle is the Hissi (apparent) miracle, that is, it is evident and clearly seen by the general public. For example, flying in the air, walking on water, fore-telling the future, traversing hundreds of miles in one step. Another type of miracle is the Ma’nawi (spiritual) miracle, which can only be seen and perceived by special people. For example, control of carnal desires, adopting virtues by Divine Guidance, refraining from bad habits, practicing all Waajibaat (compulsory acts) punctually and diligently. These types of miracles do not contain any connivance while it is probable those Hissi miracles to contain connivance.
Futhuath Makkiyah, Volume 2 page 488
In one of the esteemed Deobandi works ‘Tazkiratur Rasheed’ we read the view of their Imam Maulana Rasheed Ahmad Gangohi on this issue in the following words:
“. The powers to benefit and miracles of the Awliyah of Allah are extant not only after their death, but their power to benefit and their miracles are implemented after their death. In this statement, Ibne Abdul Barr also quotes a Prophetic hadith”.
Tazkiratur Rasheed, Volume 2 page 252 (published in Deoband)
This admission negates the belief that those that believe their Imams possessed Mu’jizaat, are Kaafirs. The possession of such miracles further strengthens our belief in Prophethood, because our Imams (as) are the heirs of the knowledge of the Prophets (as), responsible for leading the Ummah to the right path.
The Holy Qur’an has also termed the supernatural powers being granted to Awliya other than the Prophets (as) as Ayat , Allah (swt) says:
Relate to them the story of the man to whom We sent “Our signs”, but he passed them by: so Satan followed him up, and he went astray.
According to the commentators of the Holy Quran, Ayat refer to the knowledge of “Ism-e-Aa’zam” through which the person performed supernatural acts. Thus it is proven from the Holy Quran that Mu’jizaat are not exclusively for the Prophets (as), and whether they have been performed by Prophets (as) or Awliya, the Holy Quran refers to both of them as “Ayat”.
Reply Two – The Imams inherited all the miracles / knowledge of the Prophets as they were heirs of Prophetic knowledge
The Nasibi had cited these Shi’a references
They are the repositories of every branch of knowledge and perfection possessed by the Ambiya’.
We believe that the Prophet Muhammad (s) inherited the knowledge of all other Prophets (as) and he transferred this knowledge as inheritance to Imam Ali (as) and this knowledge passed through the Holy Imams.
We accordingly believe that the Imams are indeed by virtue of inheritance the repositories of every branch of knowledge and perfection possessed by the Ambiya’. This is affirmed by an incident recorded by staunch Sunni scholar Mufti Ghulam Rasul in his book ‘Jawahir al Uloom’ quoting Shaykh Shiblanji’s work ‘Nur ul Absar’ page 202:
“Once Abu Baser approach Muhammad Baqir and said ‘Are you the Waris of the Prophet (s)’s knowledge? The Imam said ‘Yes’. I (Abu Basir) then asked, ‘The Prophet was the Waris of all knowledge of the previous Prophets’. The Imam said ‘The Prophet was Waris of knowledge possessed by previous Prophets’. I (Abu Basir) then asked ‘Are you the Waris of this aspect of Prophetic knowledge?’ He (Imam Baqir) said ‘Yes’. I (Abu Basir) said ‘Do have such power? Can you raise the dead, cure the blind and the crippled? Can you tell us what people are eating and hording in their homes?’ The Imam replied ‘Yes, all by the permission of Allah (swt)’. He (Abu Basir) then said ‘I am blind, can you cure me?’. The Imam called him near and then spread his hand over his face. He (Abu Basir) began to see light and was able to see the skies, mountains and everything around. The Imam then asked ‘Do you prefer sight, knowing that Allah (swt) will question you over your deeds, or would you prefer entering Paradise without questioning?’ He (Abu Basir) said ‘I would prefer being asked no questions’. The Imam then said ‘You will have to revert back to your original state’. He (Abu Basir) said ‘Now return me to a state where I will not be questioned’. The Imam stroked his hand over his face and he was blind again’.
Jawahir al Uloom fi Fadail Baqir al Uloom, pages 286-287 (published in London)
Reply Three – Some miracles of the Imams of Ahlulbait (as) from Sunni sources
If Nawasib are trying to tell their followers that Shias exclusively believe in the miracles of the Imams of Ahlulbait (as) then they need to enlighten their followers about such incidents recorded and attested to by Sunni ulema as well. We have cited the miracle of Imam Baqir (as) previously, here are some further miracles that demonstrate the fact that the Imams inherited from previous Prophets.
Maula Ali (as) attached the detached hand of a person to his body
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi quoted the following miracles of Maula Ali (as) in his book:
“It has been narrated that a black slave who was a devoted lover of Amer al Momineen Ali (ra). Once committed theft. People caught him and presented him before the court of the caliph and the servant accepted his crime as well. Amer al Momineen Ali (ra) amputated his hand. When the servant went back to his home, he met Salman Farsi (ra) and Ibn alKara. Ibn alkara asked: “Who cut your hand?” He replied: “Ameer al Momineen, Walysub al Muslimeen, son in law of Prophet and the husband of Batool has cut it”. Ibn alKara said: “Hadrath Ali (ra) cut your hand and still you mention him with so much praise and respect?”. Servant replied: “So what! He rightly cut my hand and saved me from the fire of hell”. Salman Farsi (ra) heard the conversation of both of them and informed Hadrath Ali (ra) about it. Ameer al Momineen called the servant and put his detached hand on his palm and hid it with handkerchief. Then he started to recite something. In that instant a strange voice came “remove the handkerchief”, when people removed the handkerchief the detached hand of the servant was found attached with his hand in such a manner that there was no sign of cut. (Tafsir Kabeer, Vol 5 page 479)”
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 86 Published by Mushtaq Book Corner, Urdu Bazar Lahore
Beside this there are some other miracles of Maula Ali (as) which are also quoted in the book. For example:
. Narrated by Saeed bin Museib, that Maula Ali (as) conversed with the dead in their grave. (Hujjatullah alal Alameen, Vol 2 page 863)
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 80
. Imam Tajuddin Subki quoted in his book ‘Tabaqat’ the incident wherein Maula Ali (as) supplicated for a paralyzed person due to which he regained his health.
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 81 & 82
. During the war of Khayber when the shield of Maula Ali (as) broke, he detached the door of the Fort Khayber and used it as his shield. The door detached by Maula Ali (as) was so heavy that even 40 people were unable to lift it. (Zurqani, Vol 2 page 230)
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 85
. Once a river flooded, Maula Ali (as) brought down the flood by pointing his finger towards the river. (Shawahid un Nabuwah, page 162)
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 88
Imam Hasan (as) made ripened dates on a dry tree
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi records the following incident in his book:
“Among his various Karamaat the most popular Karamat is that once during his journey he went through such a garden which had all of its trees dry. A son of Hadrath Zubair bin al Awam (ra) was accompanying Imam Hassan. He stayed at that place and the servant prepared his bed with the roots of a dry tree. The son of Hadrath Zubair (ra) said: “O son of Prophet (s)! If only this dry tree had ripened dates so that we could have eaten them amply”. On hearing this Imam Hassan (ra) calmly recited a Dua and in just a few minutes the tree suddenly turned fresh and ripe dates appeared on it. Seeing this a shepherd on a camel exclaimed: “By God! This is the result of magic!” At this Hadrath Zubair’s son scolded him and said: “Be repentant! This is not magic rather the result of the supplication of the Prophet’s son”. The people then plucked the dates from the tree and ate amply from it. (Rozatu Shuhda, Chap. 6 page 109).”
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 189. Published by Mushtaq Book Corner, Urdu Bazar Lahore
Imam Hussain (as) made scarce water from a well overflow
Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi in his book recorded the following miracle of Imam Hussain (as):
“Abu Aun states that Imam Hussain (ra) happened to go through Ibn Mat`ee between the journey of Makkah and Madinah. He said to him: “O son of the Holy Prophet! There is very little water in this well of mine, the container doesn’t get full, I have tried various methods but all vain. Please supplicate for us”. Imam Husain (ra) asked that the water of that well be brought to him he placed his lips on the container and drank the water from it, and then released the water from his mouth into that container and instructed all the water to be poured into the well. When the water was poured into the well, the water inside began to overflow. The water quantity then increased more than before and turned sweeter than before. (Ibn Sa’d, Vol 5 page 144).”
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 190
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi has also recorded an incident that when the Yazeedi army raised the blessed head of Imam Hussain (as) on a spear, the head was reciting the Holy Quran. (Rozatu Shuhda, page 230).
Karamaat e Sahabah, page 191
The incident is also recorded by Maulana Jaami in Shawahid un Nabuwat, page 167, Shah Abdul Aziz Dehlawi in Sira Shahadatayn, page 99 and Dameeri in Heyat ul Hewan, Volume 1 page 80.
Imam Jafar Sadiq (as) ripened dried dates, turned a man into dog and then restored him back to his original state
Maulana Abdur Rahman Jaami records this miracle in Shawahid un Nubuwwa pages 333-334:
“A narrator recalls: I was with Imam Jafar, we were making our way to Hajj, and sought shelter on route under a tree containing dried dates. The Imam proceeded to utter something that I was unable to comprehend. He (The Imam) looked at the dried dates and said ‘Provide us with the riches that Allah (swt) has bestowed upon us through you’. I (the narrator) noticed that the dates were prostrating and they began to ripen into fresh dates. He (the Imam) then said ‘Come to me, recite bismillah and start eating’. I had never eaten such sweet dates before. An Arab then appeared and said ‘I have never witnessed such magic before’. Imam Jafar Sadiq replied saying ‘We are the inheritors of the Prophet. We are not magicians or sorcerers. We supplicate and Allah (swt) grants our request. If you like I could alter your face by supplicating, and you will transform into a dog. The Arab on account of his ignorance said ‘Yes do it now’. He [the Imam] prayed, the man turned into a dog and proceeded to run home. Jafar then said ‘Go and find him’. I saw him wagging his tail before his family, who proceeded to attack him with sticks. I returned and narrated what I had witnessed, the dog then appeared. It lay before the Imam and started crying. Imam Jafar took pity upon him and supplicated, which then resulted in him transforming back to his original state. The Imam then asked ‘O Arab do you have belief in what I had stated?’ The Arab said ‘I am convinced a thousand fold that you are correct”
Shawahid un Nubuwwah, pages 333-334
Reply Five – Sunnis have attributed miracles to their caliphs and other Sahaba
It is sheer injustice on the part of the Nasibi to object to Shia belief about believing in the miracles of the Imams of Ahlulbait (as) whilst their books contain various incidents which show that according to Sunni belief the Sahaba including the caliphs selected by some people possessed super natural powers.
According to Sunnis Caliph Umar could coverse with the dead
Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi states:
“Ameer al Momineen once visited the grave of a young believer and said: “O Fulan! Allah (swt) has promised that ‘And for him who fears to stand before his Lord are two gardens’. Tell me O youth! What is your condition inside the grave?”. The young believer called out Umar’s name and then twice in a very loud voice said: “My creator has bestowed these two gardens to me”.(Hujjatullah alal Alameen, Vol 2 page 860 with reference to Hakim)”.
Karamaat e Sahabah, by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 58
He has quoted many other episodes for example:
. A serious fire broke from a cave at a mountain and Umar asked the people to take his cloak and place it over a fire so as to extinguish it, which is precisely what happened. (Izalatul Khifa, Vol 2 page 172).
Karamaat e Sahabah by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi , page 61
. Once Umar dispatched an army to the Nahawind region hundreds of miles away from Madina and one day he issued specific directions to the army that they heard clearly despite being hundreds of miles away from Madinah. (Mishkat, Chapter of Karamaat, page 546, Hujatullah, Vol 2 page 860, Tarikh Khulfa, page 85).
Karamaat e Sahabah by Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 58 & 59
According to Sunnis Khalid bin Waleed turned wine into honey
Allamah Muhammad Yousuf Kandhlawi in his famed work Hayatus Sahabah Volume 3 page 731 narrates:
“To Khalid bin Waleed came a man who had with him a skin bag full of wine. Hazrat Khalid said ‘O my Allah! Turn it into honey’. Accordingly it turned into honey at once”.
Hayatus Sahabah, Volume 3 page 731
Reply Six: According to Sunnis their Ulema possessed miracles including the miracles of past prophets
Haq Chaar Yaar’s (Sipah-e-Sahaba’s) beloved Maulana Manzoor Ahmed Naumani has the following objection about the Shia:
Imamate is the combination of Prophethood and Divinity:The extracts reproduced above from the most authentic book of Shias will show that according to the religion of Isna Ashariyya, the Imams possessed all the special qualities, powers and miracles of the Prophets put together,
If the possession of the miracles of previous prophets by the Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) has caused indigestion to Manzoor Naumani then what will his adherents have to say about their ulema that according to the Deobandies possessed the miracles of past prophets including our last and most exalted Prophet (s). Imam of the Deobandies Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi (d. 1362 A.H.) in his esteemed book ‘Arwaah e Thalasah’ popularly known as ‘Hikayat al Awliya’ records the statement of his master Syed Ahmad Bareilvi as follows:
Syed Ahmad Bareilvi Sahib says: “In whichever direction I go, all the trees and all the animals there recognise me and salute me.”
Arwaah e Thalasah, page 121
Now let us see how one of the revered Deobandi figures held the miracles of Prophet Isa (as). We read in the same book about yet another champion of Deoband school:
“Khuwajah Ahmed Jaam was renowned to be Mustajab al-dawaat (one whose suplication was always accepted). A woman brought his blind child to him and said: “Just wipe your hand over the child’s face so that his eyes are cured”. At that time he was just overwhelmed by ‘submission’ therefore he very humbly said: “I am incapable of doing this”. She insisted but he gave the same reply, thus the same conversation repeated three or four times. When he saw that she was not being appeased, he just moved from there while saying: “This was Hadrath Isa’s (as) job, He (as) used to cure blindness and leprousy. I am not capable of doing this”. He had just moved a little when he was inspired: “Who you, who Isa and who Musa! Just return and wipe your hand over the child’s face, neither you nor Isa can restore health. “We do it”. After listening to this, he returned while saying “we do it, we do it” and wiped his hand over the face of the child and his eyesight was restored.”
Arwah e Thalasah, page 151-152 (published by Daarul Ishaat, Karachi)
It should be noted that in the Urdu language, generally comparisons like “Who you, who Isa and who Musa!” in a certain context are used to equalize the subjects.
Now let us turn to some of the miracles held by the early Sunni/Wahabi scholars. Esteemed Sunni scholar Imam Jamaluddin also known as Ibn al-Jawzi records:
“Abu Al-Harith said that his teacher Abu Ishaq Al-Alawy was standing on the surface of water”. Abi Al-Hassan Al-Darbandi said that he saw Ibrahin bin Saad Al-Alawi stand on the surface of the sea praying”
Safwat al Safwa, page 485 (published by Al-Maktiba Al-Asrya, Beirut, Lebanon)
About Ibrahim bin Sa`d we read:
“Ibrahim bin Sa`ad abu Ishaq Al-Alawi, one of the Sufi Sheikhs and their ascetics, he moved from Baghdad to live in Shaam”
[Tarikh Baghdad v6]
Abu Naeem al-Isfahani records:
“Abdul wahd bin Zaid narrated that Ayoub Al-Sekhtani hit the earth with his feet and water started to flow from there”
Hilyat al-Awliya, page 5 (published by Dar Al-Kutub Al-Elmya, Beriut)
Imam Dhahabi mentioned Ayoub al-Shekhtani in his book Tazkiratul Huffaz, Volume 1 while Ibn Emaad Hanbali records the following in his book Shetherat Al-Dahab, Volume 1:
The jurist (faqih) of the people of Basrah, one of the known ones, he is amongst the late Tabieen, Shua’aba said that he was the master of jurists (fuqaha), Ibn Uyaina said: ‘I never met one like him’. Hamaad bin Zaid said: ‘He was the best from amongst those I sat with and the most holding Sunnah’. Ibn Al-Medeni said: ‘He narrated around 800 hadith’. Ibn Naser Al-Deen said: ‘He is Ayoub bin Abi Tamimah Kisan Abu bakr Al-Sekhtiani Al-Basri the master of the scholars and a known Hafiz.’
By citing these references we have sought to show our readers that the Ahl’ul Sunnah have attributed miracles to their their scholars, and Sahaba (individuals who had lived large portions of their lives as polytheists indulged in all manner of sin such as alcoholism and fornication). If such individuals have been blessed with miracles then why is there an objection if we likewise believe that our Imams possessed such miracles, who do afterall come from the pure Muslim lineage of Rasulullah (s) that was untouched by idol worship, who were those Prophetic descendants that Allah (swt) had purified from all manner of impurity?
. The ability of the Imams to raise the dead
One incident that Afriqi no doubt had great enjoyment in quoting was the fact that:
The Imams can bring the dead back to life.
Reply One- Quran confirms that Allah (swt) grants such ability to his chosen ones
Is it not a fact that in Surah Aal-e-Imran verse 49, Allah (swt) cites the words of Prophet Isa (as)
“And I heal those born blind, and the lepers, and I quicken the dead”, The key words are wa uhyil mawtaa – “and I give life to the dead”.by God’s leave”.
Prophet Isa attributes the power to raise the dead to himself. In another verse Allah (swt) attributes this miracle to Himself (swt):
“And thou healest those born blind, and the lepers, by my leave. And behold! Thou bringest forth the dead by my leave”. [Surah al Maida verse 113]
It is clear that this miracle of Isa (as) was via the power granted to him by Allah (swt), it was not of his own accord. Similarly there should be no objection if we believe that our divinely appointed Imams (as) also held such ability granted by the Lord (swt).
Reply Two – Examples of the Imams of Ahlulbait raising the dead from Sunni sources
In the same way that Allah (swt) gave the miracle of resurrection to Isa (as), He (swt) also gave the same power to the Ahl’ul bayt (as) Imams.
Imam Jafar Sadiq (as) brought dead birds in to life
Esteemed Sunni scholar Maulana Nooruddin Abdur Rahman Jaami narrates this event in Shawahid un Nubuwwa pages 334-335 from a narrator:
“One day, I was amongst other attendees at a gathering Imam Jafar Sadiq. One man asked ‘Were the birds that Prophet Ibraheem (as) brought to life the same species or different?’ The Imam replied ‘If you like, I can bring them to life and show you’. We all said ‘Show us’. He then said ‘Peacock come here’ A peacock came before him. He then said ‘Crow come here’. A crow came before him. He then said ‘Hawk come here’. A Hawk appeared before him’. He then said ‘Pigeon come here’. A pigeon then appeared before him. After they all appeared he (The Imam) said (to the people) ‘Kill them and mix up their meat’, but keep their heads / necks in your hands’. After that was done, he said ‘Peacock come here’. The Imam raised the head of the peacock and we saw its body join the head, and it returned to its state of a live peacock. The remainder birds did the same’”.
Shawahid un Nubuwwa pages 334-335
Imam Jafar Sadiq (as) brought a dead cow to life
Maulana Nooruddin Abdur Rahman Jaami also records this miracle in Shawahid un Nubuwwa pages 333:
“On day I was walking alongside Imam Jafar in Makka. We passed a woman sitting in front of a dead cow, crying with her children. Imam Jaffar enquired the woman as to why they were crying to which she replied: “Me and my children were dependant on the milk of that cow which is dead now”. The Imam asked ‘Would you like Allah (swt) to bring the dead back to life?’ The woman replied ‘Why are you joking with me? I am already distressed and now you are mocking me’. He (the Imam) supplicated and the head and carves of the cow proceeded to move. He then called it and stood up. The Imam then went”.
The same event has also been recorded by Mufti Ghulam Rasool in his book ‘Subeh Sadiq’ page 451, citing ‘Tadhkira Mashaykh Naqshband’ page 49.
Subeh Sadiq, by Mufti Ghulam Rasool page 451
Reply Three – The Ahl’ul Sunnah believe that the Sahaba could raise the dead & Salafi attestations to it
Allamah Muhammad Yousuf Kandhlawi in Hayatus Sahaba Volume 3 page 667 records this remarkable event, under the chapter ‘The reviving of the dead’:
“Hazrat Anas bin Malik reported: An Ansari youth was with us. He died very early. We closed his eyes and covered him with a cloth. Some of us said to his mother: ‘Observe patience over his death and intend for recompense (thawab)’. His mother said ‘Has he died?’ We said ‘yes’. That old woman raised both of her hands towards the sky and said ‘Oh my Allah! I believed in you and migrated towards your messenger. Whenever any misfortune visited me, I prayed to You and You removed it for me!’ Hazrath Anas reports that the boy removed the cloth from his face, i.e. he came to life and while he had not yet gone from there, he ate with us and we ate with him”.
Hayatus Sahaba, Volume 3 page 667
If the Nawasib of Salafi/Wahabi persuasion have any objection against the Shia belief about their Imams (as) having the ability to raise the dead then let us present some incidents recorded by their most beloved pope Ibn Tamiyah. He recorded:
The horse of Silah ibn Ashyam once died during battle. He said ‘O Allah, do not allow me to become indebted to one of your creation.’ He prayed to Allah, and he brought his horse back to life. When he reached his house, he said to his sons, ‘take the saddle off the horse for I have borrowed him.’ When they removed the saddle the horse died”
The criterion, page 147
“A man from the tribe of An-Nakh was travelling when his donkey died. His companions said ‘give us your load and we will divide it up between our animals’. He said ‘Give me a little time’ He made very meticuous ablutions, prayed two rakaat of prayer, and made du’a to Allah. Allah brought his donkey back to life, and he continued on his way, with the full load on his own donkey”
The criterion, pages 147-148
The above cited episodes are also recrded by Ibn Taimiyah in
Majm’o al-Fatawa, Volume 11 p280-281
It should be known that Ibn Taimiyah had no objection with the belief of prophets and other virtuous people bringing dead to life, as he stated in his book ‘Al-Nabuwaat’:
“Bringing the dead to life happened by more than one prophet and it could happen by the followers of the prophets as what happened for some of this nation and some of Isa’s followers.”
Al-Nubuwaat, Volume 1 page 213
At another place he wrote:
“Bringing the dead to life is common among the prophets and even among the righteous ones.”
Al-Nubuwaat, Volume 1 page 218
If Nawasib such as the ancestors of Afriqi have no objection to believing that other than prophets, the righteous ones can bring raise the dead and that an elderly Sahaba did just that why the hostility if we believe that Imams of Ahlulbait (as) whose righteousness is attested by Ahle Sunnah as well held such powers?
Reply Four – The Ahl’ul Sunnah believe that Shaykh Abdul Qadir Gilani could raise the dead
Imam of Ahl’ul Sunnah Shaykh Abdul Qadir Gilani popularly known as ‘Ghawas al Azam’ is revered specially by the Sunnis in the Indian subcontinent. Saaim Chisthi al Hanafi says in ‘Mushkil Kusha’ Volume 1 page 96:
An incident involving Mastyer Sayyid Ghawas al Azam (ra) is in the authoritative books, he said to a Christian who deemed Isa (as) superior to Muhammad (s) – ‘What is your evidence that he is superior?’ He said ‘Jesus would raise the dead’ He replied ‘I am not a Prophet, rather I am a servant of Prophet Muhammad (s), if a I bring the dead to life will you become Muslim?’ He resurrected a dead man, and the Christian became Muslim [Tafreeh al-Khatir page 10]
Mushkil Kusha, Volume 1 page 96
If Deobandies infected with Salafi virus still have some problems with the ability of our Imams to raise the dead and suggest that no one can have such abilities then let us cite a clear-cut statement of one of their revered personalities Imam Anwar Shah Kashmiri, who in his esteemed commentary of Sahih Bukhari confirmed such an ability held by Shaykh Abdul Qadir Jilani:
Like that al-Shantoofi narrated and the muhadtheen authenticated that Sheikh Abdul Qader al-Jilani may Allah have mercy upon him, was giving speech to the people when an eagle came yelling and was disturbing the Sheikh’s speech , so he made an invocation on it and said: ‘What is wrong with you, may Allah chop cut your head’. Then the eagle fell down dead immediately, and when the Sheikh ended his speech and stoodup, he saw the dead (eagle) in the court-yard of the mosque, he inquired about it, so they told him about it, then he said: ‘Rise by Allah’s will’. Then (the eagle) flew.
Faiz al-Bari Shrah Sahih Bukhari, Volume 2 page 61
His student Maulana Badar Aalam Meeruti the former Shaikh-ul-Hadith at Daarul Uloom Deoband while accepting this belief has recorded one more incident of a same kind in the margin of this page:
I heard from the Sheikh may Allah have mercy upon him another nice story about the same topic, that there was a boy working for and learning from some scholars, once his mother visited him and saw him having a bread of malt and eating it, then she went to the Sheikh and saw a fried chicken in front of him, thus she complained to him and said: ‘You feed my son bread made of malt, while you eat this’. Then the Sheikh pointing to the chicken stated: ‘Raise by the will of Allah’. The chicken raised and became alive.
Reply Five – The Ahl’ul Sunnah have attributed the power to raise the dead to their Ulema
In reply one we had cited the fact that Prophet Isa (as) was able to raise the dead by the will of Allah, of interest is the fact that the Deobandi scholars in their efforts to extol their late Ulema have disrespect Isa (as) in the process. Maulana Mahmood al Hasan Deobandi (1268 A.H. /1851 C.E. to 1339 A.H), wrote this eulogy for his deceased teacher Maulana Rasheed Ahmad Gangohi at the time of his death:
“He brought the dead to life, and brought death to the living, take a look at this Messiah son of Maryam”
Marsiya Gangohi page 33
This poetry (naudobillah) throws a direct challenge towards Hadhrat Isa, by pointing out that whilst he was a Messiah he was only capable of resurrecting the dead, whilst Gangohi could both resurrect and bring death to the living! If the Nawasib try to defend the poetry by suggesting that death refers to ignorance and life means knowledge, thus meaning he gave the ignorant, knowledge and made the knowledgeable ignorant we will say that if this was the intention then why was Hadhrat Isa (as) singled out specifically, after all every Prophet brought knowledge to the ignorant? The only reason that Isa (as) is mentioned is due to his miracle of resurrecting the dead. Why is it shirk if we believe that our Imams (as) could perform the same miracle as Isa (as) but acceptable if the same miracle (neigh a higher one) can be performed by the Deobandi king pins?
Now that we have shown our readers the miracles possessed by the Sahaba, let us contemplate this very curious commentary served up by Islamweb as part of their Shi’a takfeer campaign:
“Signs of the prophets are possessed by the Imams” (Ibid, p. 231.) The Shi’ites have once again elevated their Imams to a very high level. The Imams they refer too are only human! So why do the Shi’ites worship them.
Just consider the logic of these Nasibis. They are suggesting that the Imams cannot possess the signs of Prophets since they are only human! What is their position of the signs that the Prophets possessed, were these Prophets humans or some other life form? It is also amusing that the Nasibi poses the rhetorical question ‘So why do the Shi’ites worship them’. If we believe that the Imams possessed the miracles of past Prophets, then that does not mean we worship them, in the same way that believing in the miracles of past Prophets does not mean we worship them. Moreover how do they explain the miracles of the Prophets, that the Ahl’ul Sunnah have attributed to the Sahaba such as resurrecting the dead (like Isa (as)), changing the physical state of something (like the stick of Musa (as)), do these miracles make the Sahaba deities who the Ahl’ul Sunnah worship? The ability of these Nawasib to give far fetched interpretations of Shi’a traditions is an ability that non fiction novelists would be proud of.
: The Imams meeting with angels
Angels visit the Imams:A Chapter in Usul-e-Kafi bears the hedline which translated into English reads: Imams are the mainsprings of knowledge and trees of Apostleship, and the angels visit them”.It is stated in this Chapter that Imam Jafar Sadiq (once) said: “We are the Trees of Apostleship, the Houses of Mercy, the Kesy of Wisdom the Treasures of Knowledge and the Angels visit us”. (p. 125).
Reply One – The Qur’an proves that angels can visit non Prophets
Numani had sought to suggest to his Sunni readership that the Angels only visit Prophets. Such a position cannot be proven from the Qur’an Allah (swt) refers to the following conversation between Sarah and the angels, in Surah Hud verses 69-73:
There came Our messengers to Abraham with glad tidings. They said, “Peace!” He answered, “Peace!” and hastened to entertain them with a roasted calf.
But when he saw their hands went not towards the (meal), he felt some mistrust of them, and conceived a fear of them. They said: “Fear not: We have been sent against the people of Lut.”
And his wife was standing (there), and she laughed: But we gave her glad tidings of Isaac, and after him, of Jacob.
She said: “Alas for me! shall I bear a child, seeing I am an old woman, and my husband here is an old man? That would indeed be a wonderful thing!”
They said: “Dost thou wonder at Allah.s decree? The grace of Allah and His blessings on you, o ye people of the house! for He is indeed worthy of all praise, full of all glory!”
If Angels can come and talk to Maryam (as) and she can likewise converse with then there should be no objection if we believe that our Imams were visited by angels.
Reply Two: Sunni Ulema believed that pious people can maintain contact with angels
As far as meeting angels is concerned Allah (swt) says in Surah Fusilaat Hamim al-Sajdah (41) verses 30-31:
In the case of those who say, “Our Lord is Allah., and, further, stand straight and steadfast, the angels descend on them (from time to time): “Fear ye not!” (they suggest), “Nor grieve! but receive the Glad Tidings of the Garden (of Bliss), the which ye were promised!
“We are your protectors in this life and in the Hereafter: therein shall ye have all that your souls shall desire; therein shall ye have all that ye ask for!-
We would like to tell the exited ‘followers’ of Maulana Manzoor Numani that one of the prestigious scholars of their own school Allamah Shabeer Ahmad Uthmani in his commentary of this verse stated:
“It is quite possible that during this world there occurs the descending of angels on pious and good people who provide them inspiration on religious and worldly matters on the instructions of Allah, which becomes the reason of the well being and satisfaction of their hearts…Majority have said that this too is the statement of angels. That the angels inspire into their hearts and fortifies them.”
Tafseer Uthmani page 638
Imam Ghazzali states:
“The pious people whilst sitting can see spirits of the Prophets and angels. They can hear them and can benefit from what they are saying”.
Al Munzul mun zalaal page 33, Bab ul Turuq al Sufiya, published in Istanbul.
Uthmani and Ghazzali state that angels can also guide pious people, if normal people can be guided in such a manner, then why not our Imams who have been divinely appointed by Allah (swt) to guide mankind? What is the objection if we believe that Ruh al Quds converses with them?
Reply Three – Angel Gibrael visited Sayyida Fatima al Zahra (as)
We read in Sahih al Bukhari Volume 5 Hadith number 739:
Narrated Anas: When the ailment of the Prophet (s) got aggravated, he became unconscious whereupon Fatima said, “Oh, how distressed my father is!” He said, “Your father will have no more distress after today.” When he expired, she said, “O Father! Who has responded to the call of the Lord Who has invited him! O Father, whose dwelling place is the Garden of Paradise (i.e. al-Firdaus)! O Father! We convey this news (of your death) to Gabriel.”When he was buried, Fatima said, “O Anas! Do you feel pleased to throw earth over Allah’s Apostle?”
If the greatest of angels can visit Sayyida Zahra (as) why is there any objection if we likewise believe that the divinely appointed Imams from her lineage are likewise visited by angels?
Reply Four – Imam Hasan(as) testified that the angels visited the Ahl’ul bayt (as)
al-Mustadrak, by al-Hakim, “Chapter of understanding the virtues of companions,” volume 3, page 172 contains this testimony of Imam Hasan (as):
“I am from the Ahl’ul bayt that Gabriel used to descend on us and ascend (back to heavens) from among us.”
In the text Imam Hasan uses the word “us”, it means that it was not just the
Prophet who would be visited by Gibrael. Whilst we are not saying that Gibrael would reveal the Qur’an to Imam Hasan the tradition proves that they could communicate with the Gabriel (as).
Reply Five: Angels visited Imam Ali bin Abi Talib (as) and conversed with him
Imam of Ahl’ul Sunnah Abdul Hamid Ghazali writes the following in his most famous work ‘Ihya Ulum id din’ records that:
“The Quraish youths one day surrounded the house of the Prophet in order to kill him. Hadhrat Ali in order to save his life, thought his life insignificant and went to the bed of the Prophet. God then addressed Gabriel and Michael and said: ‘I have established brotherhood among you and gave you equal period of life. Who is there among you who can sacrifice his life for another?’ Both of them preferred to save his own life. God then said to them: ‘Why could you not show example like Ali? I have established brotherhood between him and Muhammad, and Ali is spending the night by lying upon the bed of Muhammad in order to save the life of the latter. Go to the earth and save him from his enemies. Gabriel began to protect him keeping near his head and Michael near his feet. Gabriel said to Ali ‘blessed you are, blessed you are. There is no comparison with you. God is taking boast of you before the angels. God then sent this revelation ‘There is a man among men who sacrifices his life in search for the pleasure of Allah’ -2:207″
Ihya Ulum id din, by Abdul Hamid Ghazali, Vol 3 p 237-238 – English translation by Maulana Fazal Karim
Reply Six – The Ahl’ul Sunnah believe that the Sahabi Imran bin Hussain visited by angels
We read in Tabaqat ibn S’ad as follows:
Narrated Mutrib bin Abdullah bin al-Shakheer “Imran bin Hasain told me that what had stopped for him had restarted i-e the greetings of angels. Then he asked me to keep these words of him as secret.”
Narrated Mutrif “In Biyari Imran bin Hasain called for me and said that angels send greetings to him, and if he remains alive I should keep his words as secret, but if he dies then if I desire I may disclose them.”
It is narrated from Mutrif that angels used to greet Imran bin Hasain.
Tabaqat Ibn S’ad (Urdu), Volume 2 Page 637 (Daarul Ishaat, Karachi)
If Ahl’ul Sunnah believe that a sahabi can meet angles than why do they have objections if Shias believe that angels used to visit their Divinely appointed Imams of Ahl’ul bayt (as)?
: All the deeds of men are presented before Imams
All the deeds of men are presented before Imams:It is related that (once) Abdullah bin Aban-AL-Zaiyat, who was close to Imam Raza said to him: “Please pray for me and for members of my household”. The Imam said. “Do I not pray for you ? By God, your deeds are presented to me every day and night.” (Meaning that on the presentation of his deeds he prays for him)”.The tradition goes on to tell that when Abdullah bin Aban felt amazed over it, Imam Raza said to him: “Do you not read this verse of the Quran: Allah will behold your actions (and so) will His Messenger and the believers(IX. 105) ? By God, Mominoon (believers) in it means. Ali Ibn Abi Talib”. P. 134.In his commentary Allama Qazwini says that while stressing upon the word at mominoon in the above verse. Imam Raza has mentioned only the name of Hazrat Ali for the reason that Imamate started with him otherwise it denotes him as well as all the other Imams of his progeny. (As-Safi: Vol. III; Pt.1; p. 140).
If Naumani and his (Haq Char Yaari) followers have developed indigestion at the Shia belief that Allah (swt) has bestowed the favour to his Messenger (s) and his true successors to see the deeds of the people then allow us to expand on the same verse cited by Imam Ali Raza (as). We read in Surah Taubah verse 105:
[Shakir 9:105] And say: Work; so Allah will see your work and (so will) His Messenger and the believers; and you shall be brought back to the Knower of the unseen and the seen, then He will inform you of what you did.
Three people have been mentioned in the cited verse who see our deeds. Firstly it is Almighty Allah, about whom we believe that Nawasib shall have no objection.
Secondly it’s Holy Prophet (s) who has been said to see our actions. True followers of the Holy Prophet (s) will have no objection to this since the Holy Quran in other verses such as Surah Nisa: 41, Surah Nahl: 89 tells us that the Prophet (s) is a witness over all people until the day of resurrection tragically as we live in a world populated by those seeking to degrade the merits of the Holy Prophet (s) by bringing their literal approach, allow us to cite a tradition to back up our stance. The master of Anti-Shia televsied debates Shaykh ul Islam Dr. Muhammad Tahir ul Qadri records this hadith in his book ‘Beseeching for Help’:
“Your deeds are presented to me. If they are good, I express my gratitude to Allah, and if the deeds are not good, then I pray to Allah for your forgiveness”.
Some of the sources on which the author relied are:
1. Haythami transmitted it in Majma’-uz-zawa’id (9:24) and said that that tradition had been reported by Bazzar (in his Musnad) and its sub-narrators are all of Sahih (sound) hadith.
2.‘Iraqi has confirmed the soundness of its chain of transmission in his book Tarh-ut-tathrib fi sharh-it-taqrib (3:297).
3. Suyuti, recording it in al-Khasa’is-ul-kubra (2:281) and Manahil-us-sifa fi takhrij ahadith ash-Shifa (p.3), has commented that Ibn Abi Usamah in his Musnad has reproduced it through Bakr bin ‘Abdullah al-Muzani and Bazzar in his Musnad who have relied on its narration by ‘Abdullah bin Mas’ud with a sound chain of transmission.
4. Nabhani related it in Hujjatullah ‘alal-’alamin fi mu’jazat sayyid-il-mursalin (p.713).
Now coming to the third and the main person (as) whose authority is bestowed by Allah (swt) to see the actions of the people i.e the ‘believers’ in the cited verse, we present the words of Ibn Abbas (r) to understand who ‘believers’ refers to in various verses of the Holy Quran.
“Allah did not reveal an Ayah beginning O you who believe..’ but that Ali is its Amir and its eminence. Allah reproached the companions of Muhammad in more then one place but he never mentioned ‘Ali but with approval”.
History of the Khalifas who took the right way, page 179 English translation of Tarikh ul Khulafa by al Hafidh Jalaladeen as Suyuti
Whilst the definition of ‘believers’ has been proven beyond reasonable doubt, let us substantiate our position by highlighting the fact that esteemed Sunni commentaries have stated that ‘believers’ in verse 4 of Surah Tahreem and verse 55 of Surah Maidah refers to Ali bin Abi Talib (as) so why the objection if we likewise believe that the word ‘believers’ used in the aforesaid verse of Surah Taubah also refers to Ali bin Ai Talib (as)? Along the same line why the objection if we believe that the word likewise refers to the other Imams from his linage who see the actions of the people of their (as) respective period?
This is all connected with Wilayat al-Takwiniya of the Imams of Ahulbayt (as) which we have discussed in chapter 4.
: The role of Imam (as) during Laylatul Qadr (Night of Power)
Maulana Manzoor Numani advanced the following objections about the involvement of the Imams (as) in Laylatul Qadr/ Shab e Qadr (The night of power):
In the Night of Power (Shab-e-Qadr) every year God reveals a Book to the Imams through Angels and Ar-Ruh.In the Chapter, Babul Bada, of Usul-e-Kafi there is a tradition saying that Imam Jafar Sadiq, while explaining the Quranic verse 39 of Sura-i-Ra’ad.TRANSLATE ARABIC”What God pleaseth He will wipe out or confirm; and with Him is the knowledge of the Book” observed that “only that thing is obliterated which was existent already, and that thing is confirmed which was not existent previously”.The commentator of Usul-e-Kafi, Allama Qazwini remarks: “For every year there is a separate book. It means that book which contains exegesis of the commands. Imam of the day will need for the next year. The angels and Ar-Ruh descend with that book on the Night of Power on the Imam of the day”. (vol., II;P.129).
It is, further, related that Imam Baqar said: “It has been decreed by God that every year a night will occur in which a book will descend detailing all the affairs and events of the next year until the same night of that year”. P 153).
This topic has always caused indigestion to various Nasibi authors and have been raised by Maulana Azam Tariq (la) in ‘Khubaat e Jail’ pages 224-225, Maulana Yusuf Ludhiyanvi in ‘Shia aur Sunni Ikhtilaaf aur Siraat e Mustaqeem’ (Shia and Sunni dispute and the straight path), page 130 (Published in Binori Town, Karachi) and Ahl-Hadith scholar Molvi Ihtishaam-uddin Muradabadi in “Naseehat ush-Shia” pages 437-438 (Maktabah Sidiqiya, Multan). All of them have recorded the traditions in a distorted manner. It seems that they have plagarised each others works. All of them have tried to prove different points from the tradition. Anyhow, here we present the actual wordings of Allamah Khaleel Qazwini (rh) so that there remains no confusion:
“For every year there is a seperate book. That is a book which contains explanation and orders of the knowledge that Imam will require until the next year. And with that book angels and ‘Amr (ruh) descend during the night of Qadr to the Imam of the age (Imam al-Zamana). However, not as a revealation (wahi), because in that case it would be required for each Imam to be a Prophet, but as informing them, which means reminding of the known preliminaries in the concluded order, as it is understood from the Quran. As stated in Surah Qadr and Dukhan and as explained in the book of Hujjah in 8th hadeeth of 41st Baab, which is regarding the background of the revealation of the aya ‘we descend it down in the night of Qadr…’ that Allah the exalted, can dismiss what he wants from the book of beliefs that is for the Imam of the creation, and brings about that which is understood from the Quran, and therefore stated in Quran in Surah Nisa, ‘Certainly those will know who understand…’“.
Asaafi Sharah Usool al-Kafi, Kitab al Tawheed, Baab al-Bada’, Volume 2 page 229 (Lucknow)
Moreover, there is no disagreement about the fact that Allah (swt) sends all of his decisions in the form of affairs on the night of power which are then handed over to the relevant angels. Almost all the scholars of Ahle Sunnah under the commentary of Surah Dakhan and Surah Qadr have written to this effect. For example Allamah Shabeer Ahmad Uthmani records under the commentary of the word ‘Amr’ of Surah Dukhan:
“Means all the absolute and rational decisions of the year in terms of Qaza and Qadr are copied from Loh al-Mahfooz in this sacred night and are handed over to the angels who work in the department of Takwiniya. According to some traditions that is the fifteenth night of the month of Shaban which is called Shab al-Barat. It is possible that this work begins in that night while it gets ended in the night of Shab al-Qadr.”
Tafseer Uthmani, page 659
Allamah Alauddin Ali bin Muhammad Baghdadi popularly known as al-Khazin records in his esteemed Tafseer:
“The absolute affairs are decided. Ibn Abbas has narrated that all the good and bad incidents due to happen in the year are copied from the Mother of the books (Ummul Kitab) on Laylat al-Qadr (night of power) like the provision (Rizq) of the people, their age etc, even this is written, that such and such persons will perform pilgrimage, it has also been stated that this is the fifteenth night of the month of Shabaan and the ultimate decision of all the incidents of the year are made on that night, separate lists are prepared for the people who have to die and those who have to live. Baghwi has narrated through his chain from the Holy Prophet (s) that He (s) said: ‘The ultimate decision about the age of the people are made from one Shabaan to the next Shabaan, even if a man gets married and when a child is born in his house, but his name has been listed amongst the dead ones in that very year’. Ibn Abbas narrates that Allah (swt) takes all the decisions on the fifteenth night of Shabaan and hands over the instructions and details of those decisions to those who are responsible for their implementation.”
Tafseer Khazin, Volume 5 pages 409-410
Angels are not exclusively responsible for the implementation of those instructions. Those perfect human beings who are superior to the angels are deployed over the angels and are provided with the knowledge of those instructions that are then passed on to the angels to enable implemention. Of course, the Imams from the Ahlulbayt of the Holy Prophet (s) are those human beings. Again this is related to the Wilayat al-Takwiniya of the Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) that we previously discussed in detail in Chapter 4, we will however repeat one excerpt in order to close the topic. Shah Ismaeel Shaheed Dahalwi records from his master Syed Ahmad Barelvi:
“Likewise, the perfect from amongst the human beings performing regulatory actions can be the source of all the services of the angels. For example, the killing of pagans by the angels through fighting or prayers can also be done by the perfect people through fighting or prayers. The service of providing benefit by the angels can also be performed by these people, the prayers and remembrance of Allah (swt) attributed to a class of angels is also shared by these people, the services of teaching, preaching and discourses performed by the angels are also done by them. For the establishment of a just kingdom and lofty caliphate, spiritual imamate, prophethood, apostleship, and seal of prophethood, the services concerned to the angels can also originate from them and it should be thought that they can also perform all other services.”
Siraat e Mustaqeem, page 176 (Islami Academy Lahore)
Thus, in the light of the above discussion we know that the details of all incidents due to happen next year are decided on Laylat-al-Qadr they are then handed over to the the Imam of the time (as) who throughout that year make His (as) subordinate angles work for the implementation of those instructions/decisions.
: The knowledge of unseen in respect of knowing the death of others
The Imams know when they will die, and they do not die except by their own choice” (Ibid, p: 258.) Now, this is a clear statement of kufr. Only Allah knows when a man will die! And these Shi’ites say that their Imams can control when they die?? This is major kufr and shirk for any one to believe in all the things that the Shi’ites say about their Imams!
Knowledge of death is a Ghayb that is possessed by Allah (swt), as He (swt) says in Surah Luqman verse 34:
Verily, Allâh! With Him (Alone) is the knowledge of the Hour, He sends down the rain, and knows that which is in the wombs. No person knows what he will earn tomorrow, and no person knows in what land he will die. Verily, Allâh is All Knower, All Aware (of things).
As we have already mentioned, this Ghayb is also bestowed on the elect of Allah (swt), as he says in Surah Jinn, 72:26-27:
“Allah Alone is the Knower of the Unseen. He never grants the Knowledge of his Ghayb to anyone but to His chosen Messengers and appoints guard before them and behind them.”
In relation to this Ghayb, Allah (swt) has granted people:
- Knowledge of the death of others
- Knowledge of their own deaths
Before refuting the objections of the Nasibi writers we shall first evidence the fact that Rasulullah (s) and our Imams possessed knowledge of ghayb in relation to the death of others
Reply Two: Rasulullah (s) foretold of the deaths of the Kufar of Badr that included where they would die
If we analyse no. 4 (no person knows in what land he will die) Rasulullah (s) was blessed with this power, evident from the fact that he pin-pointed the death of the kuffar before the Battle of Badr, not just the land but the very area wherein they would perish. This is what we read in Sahih Muslim Book 019, Number 4394:
It has been narrated on the authority of Anas that when (the news of) the advance of Abu Sufyan (at the head of a force) reached him. the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) held consultations with his Companions. The narrator said: Abu Bakr spoke (expressing his own views), but he (the Holy Prophet) did not pay heed to him. Then spoke ‘Umar (expressing his views), but he (the Holy Prophet) did not pay heed to him (too). Then Sa’d b. ‘Ubada stood up and said: Messenger of Allah, you want us (to speak). By God in Whose control is my life, if you order us to plunge our horses into the sea, we would do so. If you order us to goad our horses to the most distant place like Bark al-Ghimad, we would do so. The narrator said: Now the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) called upon the people (for the encounter). So they set out and encamped at Badr. (Soon) the water-carriers of the Quraish arrived. Among them was a black slave belonging to Banu al-Hajjaj. The Companions of the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) caught him and interrogated him about Abu Sufyan and his companions. He said: I know nothing about Abu Sufyan, but Abu Jahl, Utba, Shaiba and Umayya b. Khalaf are there. When he said this, they beat him. Then he said: All right, I will tell you about Abu Sufyan. They would stop beating him and then ask him (again) about Abu Sufyan. He would again say’, I know nothing about Abu Sufyan, but Abu Jahl. ‘Utba, Shaiba and Umayya b. Khalaf are there. When he said this, they beat him likewise. The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) was standing in prayer. When he saw this he finished his prayer and said: By Allah in Whose control is my life, you beat him when he is telling you the truth, and you let him go when he tells you a lie. The narrator said: Then the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: This is the place where so and so would be killed. He placed his hand on the earth (saying) here and here; (and) none of them fell away from the place which the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) had indicated by placing his hand on the earth.
If Salafis argue that this incident doesn’t show the knowledge of the unseen that the Holy Prophet (s) was blessed with and can be explained as a routine phenomena of normal people then can any Salafi/Wahabi take us to a place and foretell us about a death of any individual including the precise death spot? If not then these narrow-minded people have no right to degrade the esteemed rank granted to our Holy Prophet (s) by denying him the knowledge he was granted.
Reply Three: Rasulullah (s) foretold the land in which Imam Hussain (as) would be martyred
There are also clear traditions wherein the Holy Prophet (s) said Imam Hussain (as) would die in the land of Karbala. We read in Khasais al Kubra Volume 2 page 125 (Maktaba Nurree Rizvi Publishers, Pakistan)
‘Verily my son [Hussain] will be killed in a land called Kerbala, whoever amongst you is alive at that time must go and help him”.
Khasais al Kubra, Volume 2 page 125
This shall suffice as proof that even these secrets were unlocked as Allah (swt) bestowed this exclusive knowledge on the Prophet (s). When one has the keys to something, one has full, unrestricted and at their own will access that domain. The five things mentioned are those that Allah incorporated into the Knowledge of to the Prophet (as) at His discretion. It is important to point out, the Holy Prophet (as) does not know which land a person will die in of his own accord, but rather this Knowledge is granted to him by Allah.
Reply Four: Imam Baqir (as) foretold the death of Zayd ibn ‘Ali
We read in Shawahid un Nubuwwa page 318 under the topic ‘Karamaat e Hadrath Imam Baqir (ra)’:
“A thiqah narrator states ‘I was with Imam Baqir when his brother Zayd walked past us, he said ‘By Allah! He shall rebel in Kufah, the people shall kill him, and his head shall be paraded through the streets and then impaled on a spike”.
Shawahid un Nubuwwah, page 318
We know that historically Zayd was killed in this same brutal manner. This shows that Allah (swt) had blessed our Imams with the knowledge to foretell a person’s death.
Reply Five: Imam Kazim (as) foretold the death of his jailor
Shaykh Shablanji records in ‘Nur al Absar’ page 230:
“One night, whilst in the Baghdad prison Abu Yusuf and Muhammad bin Hasan visited [Imam Kadhim], they conveyed salutations and sat down. They wanted to test his knowledge via questions and answers. At that time the jail entered and said ‘My duty has expired, if you require anything tell me and I shall bring it tomorrow. The Imam said ‘I require nothing, you can go’. The Imam then said to Abu Yusuf and Muhammad bin Hasan ‘I am surprised that this man is stating that he shall bring something tomorrow, he is unaware that he shall die tonight’. Upon hearing this, Abu Yusuf and Muhammad bin Hasan obtained permission to leave and said to each other ‘WE went to asked questions on issues relating to Fardh and Sunnah, but he spoke on the knowledge of ghayb’. They then sent a man to keep watch on the jailor’s home so that the truth could be established. During the nigh he (the watchman) heard a loud noise from inside the house, as well as noise from the immediate neighbourhood. Upon inquiry he (the watchman) discovered that the man had died”.
Nur al Absar, by Shaykh Shiblanji, page 230
We see that Imam Kazim (as) foretold of the time of his jailer’s death and two Sunni Imams were witness to this knowledge of ghayb, our opponents will therefore have to accept that our Imams were blessed with this knowledge.
Reply Six: Imam Raza (as) foretold the death of another man
Maulana Nooruddin Abdur Rehman Jami records in Shawahid’un Nubuwwa page 349:
“One day he [Imam Raza] saw someone and said ‘O man of Allah! Whatever you desire, do it quickly, make a will and make preparations for that definite thing that no one can run from’. The man died three days later”
Shawahid un Nubuwwa page 349
We had cited the fact that Allah (swt) said that ‘and no person knows in what land he will die’ – the narrations that we have cited show that Rasulullah (s) and his Ahl’ul bayt (as) knew of the deaths of others, which proves that Allah (swt) had blessed with knowledge of the unseen in this regards. When we see that our Imams were endowed with knowledge of this Ghayb, then there should be no objection to our next belief i.e.
: Imams knowing the time of their death and having authority over it
This is one of the most favorite topics of our opponents specially the najis Nasibies of Sipah-e-Sahabah (Hinda Haq Char Yaari) as raised by their late Maulana Manzoor Ahmed Numani:
Imams know their Hour of Death. Their death is in their control:A Chapter in Usul-e-Kafi bears the title “Imams (Peace be upon them) know when they will die and their death occurs at their own volition.” (p. 158).The same is the substance of the sayings of imam appearing in it. The last one, of course, needs particular attention, and, hence, we are reproducing it here.Imam Baqar is reported to have said: “God Almighty had sent down a force (of angels) from the heavens (to Karbala) to help Husain. It had reached (half-way) between the sky and the earth. Then, God gave option to Husain to accept the help and utilize the force or to meet Him (through death and martyrdom) whereupon he preferred meeting the Lord (i.e., martyrdom).” P. 159.
Since Nawasib deem everyone in this world including Prophets, Saints, Auliyah etc to be normal human beings like themselves they deem it Shirk to believe that someone besides Allah (swt) may know his time of death or has been given authority over his death by Allah (swt). The reality is Allah (swt) bestows His blessings on those whom he loves and chooses and opens the door of His blessings over them and accordingly grants qualities which a normal human being cannot even imagine. Inspiration about the time of death or granting authority over the death of a chosen one is also amongst such blessings bestowed by Allah (swt) and had this mullah and his adherents bothered to dedicate time to studying their own books without the spectacles of Shia-hatred he would have realised that this belief is also ascribed to by his school of thought.
Reply One: The Ahl’ul Sunnah themselves believe that all Prophets are given authority over their deaths
It is very strange that whenever our opponents find traditions about the Imams of Ahulbayt (as) being given the authority over their deaths they issue takfeer against us without bothering to know the stance of their own school in this regard which clearly affirms that all prophets were given authority over their deaths and Izrail (the angel of death) was able to seize their soul only after an indication of death from them. As evidence we would like to cite one of the legendry scholars of the Sunni school, Ibn Kathir:
Numerous Thiqa narrators have narrated from various authentic sources that when Izrail [angel of death] came to Musa (as) and told him the aforesaid instruction of Allah (swt), Musa (as) didn’t recognize him therefore Izrail once again came to him, appearing to be an Arab thus Musa (as) quickly recognized him because he had earlier came to Musa (as) for the delivery of revelation in this very appearance and it was then that he indicated Izrail to seize His soul.
It has been told in various traditions pertaining to the seizing the soul of the prophets that Izrail used to enter into their houses after taking their permission and would inform them about the instruction of Allah (swt) and he used to seize their soul after getting indication from them.
Al-Bidayah Wal-Nihayah (Urdu), Vol 1 page 315-316 Topic: ‘The death of Musa (as)’ (published by Nafees Academy Karachi)
If the comments of their hero aren’t sufficient then let us cite the very fact from that tongue deemed by our opponents to be exalted and trustworthy.
‘A’isha reported: I heard that never a prophet dies until he is given an option to opt the life of (this) world or that of the Hereafter. She further said: I heard Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) say in his last illness in which he’ died. I heard him saying in gruffness of the voice: Along with those persons upon whom Allah bestowed favours from amongst the Apostles, the testifiers of truth, the martyrs, the pious and goodly company are they (iv. 69). (It was on bearing these words) that I thought that he had been given choice (and he opted to live with these pious persons in the Paradise).
1. Sahih Muslim Book 031, Number 5988 to 5990 (3 traditions)
2. Musnad Ahmed bin Hanbal, Volume 6 Hadith: 23442, 24262, 24519 & 25142
3. Al-Bidayah Wal-Nihayah (Urdu), Vol 5 page 418-419 Topic: ‘The death of Prophet (s)’ Quoting from Abu Daud al-Tyalsi (2 Traditions).
If according to Sunni belief all prophets were given such authority then why the objection if the Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) who are the successors of Holy Prophet (s) and his Sharyah (Tuhfa Asthna Ashariyah, page 75), and the leaders of all Awliyah (Maktubaat, 9:17 # 123) are also blessed with the same authority?
Whilst we have already proved that Sunnis believe that prophets are given the authority to live or die for those minds still clouded by their abhorrence of the Shi’a, we shall cite the episodes of two prophets separately in this regard.
Reply Two: The Ahl’ul Sunnah believe that Prophet Musa was given authority over his death and he was foretold his time of death time
We read the following in authentic Ahl’ul Sunnah work narrated from Abu Huraira:
The angel of death was sent to Moses and when he went to him, Moses slapped him severely, spoiling one of his eyes. The angel went back to his Lord, and said, “You sent me to a slave who does not want to die.” Allah restored his eye and said, “Go back and tell him (i.e. Moses) to place his hand over the back of an ox, for he will be allowed to live for a number of years equal to the number of hairs coming under his hand.” (So the angel came to him and told him the same). Then Moses asked, “O my Lord! What will be then?” He said, “Death will be then.” He said, “(Let it be) now.” He asked Allah that He bring him near the Sacred Land at a distance of a stone’s throw. Allah’s Apostle (p.b.u.h) said, “Were I there I would show you the grave of Moses by the way near the red sand hill.”
1. Sahih Bukhari Volume 2, Book 23, Number 423
2. Sahih Muslim, Book 30, Number 5851
The cited hadith gives the following two points:
1. Initially Musa (as) was given the authority over his death which made the angel of death went back successful in his task and he said to his Lord: “You sent me to a slave who does not want to die“. These words make it further clear that initially the task of the angel of death was dependant on Musa (as)’s wish i.e he was given authority over his death.
2. Allah (swt) then foretold Musa (as) the number of years he would survive i.e “number of years equal to the number of hairs”.
If a chosen one by Allah (swt) was given authority over his death and then was foretold about his death time then why do the Nasibi people have objection if Shia believes that the divinely appointed Imams of Ahlulbayt (as), the successors of Prophet (s) making them the successor of all Prophets were also granted such blessings by Allah (swt)?
Reply Three: The Holy Prophet (s) foretold his death and was also given authority over it
We read in Sahih al Bukhari Volume 4, Book 56, Number 820:
Narrated ‘Aisha: The Prophet in his fatal illness, called his daughter Fatima and told her a secret because of which she started weeping. Then he called her and told her another secret, and she started laughing. When I asked her about that, she replied, The Prophet told me that he would die in his fatal illness, and so I wept, but then he secretly told me that from amongst his family, I would be the first to join him, and so I laughed.”
The tradition makes it clear that the Prophet (s) knew about his death. When we turn the pages of history we see that the angel of death did not have the audacity to even enter the presence of our beloved Holy Prophet (s) without His (s) permission, seizing without His (s) consent does not even come into the equation. Shaykh Abdul Haq Muhaddith Dehlawi records in his famed book:
“It has been narrated that the angel of death sought permission to enter and then came to the Holy Prophet (s) and stood before Him (s) saying: “O Holy Prophet! O Ahmed! Allah has sent me to you and has ordered me to obey whatever you say, if you grant permission then I may seize your soul and if you do not grant permission then I will not do so. Allah has given you authority in this regard”
Then Gibrail came and said to the Prophet (s): ‘O Muhammad (s)! Allah is happy with you and He calls you’. The Prophet (s) then said to the angel of death: “O angel of death! Get busy in the work you have been instructed to perform”.
Madarij un Nabuwwah, Volume 2 page 729 (published Madina Publishing Co. Karachi).
The tradition is self-explanatory but since our opponents have abandoned all aspects of justice and decency in their Shia-hatred we remain skeptical over the ability to understand the Shia stance about Imams of Ahlulbait (as). If the Holy Prophet (s) and Prophet Musa (as) were given authority over their death then why do Nasibi mullahs yap when it comes to the authorities granted by Allah (swt) to the successors of very Prophet (s) ? We have made it clear that Allah (swt) does grant such authorities to his chosen people and being submissive to their lord they submit back such an authority to their creator just like we see above in the case of Holy Prophet (s) and also in the case of Imam Hussain (as) which Maulana Numani tried to mock at.
Reply Three – Some incidents from Sunni sources wherein Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) foretold their own deaths
One – Maula Ali (as) foretold his death
We read the following account in Musnad Ahmed bin Hanbal that has been declared ‘Sahih’ by Shaykh Ahmed Shakir:
Zaid bin Wahb said that on one occasion Ali approacheda Khariji that resided Basra. There was a man named al-Ja’ad bin Ba’ja who asked Ali: ‘O Ali! Fear Allah, you have to die’. Ali replied: ‘No, rather I will be killed. I will be struck by the blow of a sword that will colour this beard, this is something decided…”
Musnad Ahmed, Volume 1 page 472
Maulana Abdur Rahman Jaami in Shawahid’un Nubuwwa pages 294-295 under the topic ‘Ameer Mu’awiya (ra) and Hadhrat Ali (ra)’ says as follows:
“On one occasion Hadrath Ameer Mu’awiya(ra) said to his close followers, ‘How will we know of our final destination? Can anyone tell us? People said, ‘We are unaware of any means’. Mu’awiya said ‘I know of a method to determine one’s final destination. I’ll ask ‘Ali who shall tell me of it, ‘Ali speaks the truth, whatever he states is true, Mu’awiya summoned three people with instructions that each attend Kufa on separate days, and tell the people of my death, funeral rites, all three must issue corroborate their statements. The three accordingly relayed the information to the Kufans on separate days. On the first day a companion of ‘Ali said to him ‘Mu’awiya has died, things shall become easier now’. ‘Ali gave no response. The same news was conveyed to ‘Ali the next day, but ‘Ali ignored it. On the third day when the matter was again passed back to ‘Ali, with the companion stating ‘O ‘Ali three reliable people have conveyed this information, it is confirmed that Mu’awiya is dead’. ‘Ali replied saying ‘You don’t know him’ ‘Ali then signalled at his head and beard and said ‘Mu’awiya shall not die until my head and beard is covered in blood’. He (‘Ali) then said ‘The son of a lover eater will be pleased at this’.
Shawahid’un Nubuwwah, pages 294-295
We see from this narration that Maula Ali (as) knew of his death, his state at the time and also knew that Mu’awiya would outlive him. This was an early prediction as the time came closer we see that Maula Ali (as) even knew the day on which he would be martyred. We read in Yanabi al Mawaddat (combined volume1-3) page 193:
“On the night of the 19th of Ramadhan he (‘Ali) was tense and kept coming out. He looked at the sky and said ‘I have never lied nor has anything that I have said ever been established as a lie, this is the night that was promised me. At sunrise as left for the mosque, the birds began to chirp loudly, he said ‘These birds are crying for me”.
Yanabi al Mawaddat (combined volume1-3) page 193
Also see Sawaiq al Muhriqah, page 453 (published in Faisalabad, Pakistan)
We can see from this narration that Maula Ali (as) was fully aware that this was his final night on the earth.
Two – Imam Baqir (as) foretold his death
We read in Shawahid’un Nubuwwah page 319 under the topic ‘Karamaat e Hadrath Imam Baqir (ra)’:
“Imam Jafar narrates ‘One day my father said to me, “Only five years remain of my life”. When he died we counted the years / days and it was exactly as he had said”.
Shawahid’un Nubuwwah page 319
We can see from this example that Imam Baqir (as) knew of his death, down to the exact date.
Three – Imam Kazim (as) foretold his death
Maulana Jaami in Shawahid’un Nubuwwah, pages 336-337 records:
“A Thiqah narrator states that when Imam Kadhim was summoned on the first occasion to Baghdad by the Abbaside Khalifa Mahdi, I was upset. The Imam asked ‘Why are you worried?’ I said ‘Why shouldn’t I be worried, you are entering a place that is the unknown’. The Imam said ‘Do nor worry I shall return on such a date and time, wait for me’. The Imam then was accompanied by a delegation of state officials to Baghdad. On his arrival Mahdi bin Mansur had him imprisoned, and conspired to have him killed quickly. Mahdi paid a specific person to kill him before sunrise and then went to sleep. Whilst asleep he [Mahdi] witnessed ‘Ali in a dream who read a Qur’anic verse to him ‘Then, is it to be expected of you, if ye were put in authority, that ye will do mischief in the land, and break your ties of kith and kin?’ He became fearful and told the man to refrain from the initial order. The next morning he [Mahdi] had the Imam freed, and the Imam retuned on the same date and time that he had told the man…The Madinans rejoiced ‘Alhamdolillah, the tyrant has freed you’. The Imam replied ‘I have been freed on this occasion, but he shall summon me once more and I will not attain freedom’’. The Khalifa accordingly summoned him a second time, and upon the order of Haroon Rasheed, he was given poisoned dates, whilst eating them he said, ‘From Allah we come and to Him shall we return’. He [the Imam] then said the jailer ‘I know that I have been given poisoned grapes, this shall be the cause of my martyrdom, tomorrow my body shall turn a yellow colour, and it will then turn red and black. I shall then die’. He died in exactly the same manner”.
Four – Imam Raza (as) foretold his death
Maulana Jaami in Shawahid’un Nubuwwah, pages 346-347:
“Babel bin Khuzai wrote a poem praising the Ahl’ul bayt and read it ‘This pure body of Nafs Zakiyya was buried in Baghdad, but Allah raised it to Arafat. The Imam then said ‘Babel add these lines ‘And there will also be a grave in Tus’. Babel; said ‘O son of the Prophet (s) ‘Whose grave is this?’ The Imam said, ‘It shall be mine. I shall soon be killed in a place where I will be an outsider my burial place shall become a place of pilgrimage for the lovers of the Ahl’ul bayt, those who attend shall be with me on the Day of Judgement, Allah (swt) will forgive them”.
Shawahid’un Nubuwwa pages 346-347
Five – Imam Taqi (as) foretold his death
We read in Shawahid un Nubuwwah, page 358:
“When Mamun died Muhammad Taqi said: ‘I shall die thirty months from today’, he died thirty months after the death of Mamun”
Shawahid’un Nubuwwa page 358
Reply Four- The Ahl’ul Sunnah have attributed knowledge of one’s death to Sahaba and scholars
We will respond to these Nasibis by pointing out that you believe that your Sahaba and Imams possessed such knowledge.
One – Umar knew when he would die
The following is narrated by Allamah Jalaluddin Suyuti in Tareekh ul Khilafa page 132:
“Ma’dan ibn Abi Talhah: ‘Umar gave a Khutbah and said, I saw (in a dream) as if a cock pecked me once or twice and I can only believe that it means that my term has come…”
Tareekh ul Khilafa page 132
If only Allah (swt) knows when a man will die then how did the Umar know when he would die?
Two: Abu Bakr knew when he would die
We have already cited the incident which according to Ahl’ul Sunnah proves the merits of Abu Bakar of knowing his death time and the gender of the baby in womb. We will cite that again very briefly here again. Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi while counting the miracles possessed by Abu Bakr quoted a tradition from Tarikh e Khulfa, page 57 and then records the views of Sunni scholars:
“Allamah Tajuddin Subki [rh] has stated that two miracles of Ameer al Momineen Abu Bakr (ra) are proved from this Hadith.
. That he had come to know before his death that he would leave the word due to the illness he was suffering from that is why he stated in his will “My wealth has become the wealth of my heirs…(Izalatul Khifa, vol 2 page 21 & Hujatullah, vol 2 page 860)”
Karamaat e Sahabah by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Abdul Mustufa Aazmi, page 46
Here we present the online link of the reference from Tabaqat al Kubra by Imam Tajuddin Subki (727-771 AH/1327-1370 EC):
From these narrations we see that ‘Umar and Abu Bakar knew exactly when they would die, by making such a claim Umar and Abu Bakar automatically fall under the Takfeer trap of Islamweb, we therefore invite them to issue an edict of apostasy for making such a divine claim. And if Nawasib really believe that their caliphs knew about their deaths then they have no right to point out fingers at Shia for the same belief held for their Imams.
Reply Five- The Ahl’ul Sunnah have attributed to their scholars the knowledge of their death as well as authority over it
Its not just Sahabah but when we ponder into the books of Ahle Sunnah we see that they believe that some pious scholars of their school were not only knew about their deaths but some of them even had authority over it.
One: Imam of Ahl’ul Sunnah Muhammad bin Talha Shafiyee knew exactly when he was going to die
Imam Abu Muhammad Abdullah bin Asad al Yameni (d. 768 H) popularly known as Al-Yaf`ee records in his prestigious work ‘Miraat al Jinaan’ Volume 4 page 128 under the topic ‘Events of year 652’:
“Muhammad bin Talha Shafiyee was a great scholar in Fiqh and debates, He was a vizier to the King but left this to pursue piety and practised control of the nafs (self). It is about home that Radhi bin Asma states “I was on the mountain of Lebanon a saw a Faqir. I met the Faqir who said ‘I witnessed a dream wherein I heard poetry but was unable to see the reciter, the poetry was ‘O Ibn Talha Allah’s pleasure be upon you. You abandoned the position of vizier so as to pursue the spiritual kingdom’. The second line said ‘What can we say of that individual who left Dinar’s / Dirham for treasure’. When I got off the mountain I approached Shaykh Muhammad bin Talha and witnessed the king requesting permission to enter his residence. He was granted permission after a little while, and benefited from meeting Muhammad bin Talha. I approached the Shaykh and told him about the dream of the Faqir. He said immediately, ‘O Radhi is this dream is true then I shall die within eleven days. He died within eleven days”
Miraat al Jinaan, Volume 4 page 128
Two – The Deobandis believe that one of their scholars not only knew the details of his death but possessed the authority to delay it
For this we have relied on a book which usually every Deobandi carries with him i.e. ‘Fazail-e-Sadaqaat’ by Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Muhammad Zakkariya Kaandhlawi:
“Abul Husain Maliki Rahmatullah alaihe says that he associated with Shaikh Khair Nurbaf Rahmatullah alaihe for several years. The Sheikh said to him, eight days before his death. ‘I shall die on Thursday evening, at the time of Maghrib Salaat, and I shall be buried on Friday after Jumah Salaat.” Although, he advised me not to forget, but I forgot about it and, on Friday morning, a man told me about the Sheikh’s death. I immediately went to his place to attend his funeral prayers. One the way I met people coming back from his house who told me that burial would take place after Jummah Saalah.
Nevertheless I went to his house and asked people the details of the Sheikh’s experience of death. A person, who had remained with him till his last breath, narrated to me that the Sheikh swooned for a while just before Maghrib Salaat. Then, he recovered somewhat and said to someone in the corner of the room, who was invisible to others, ‘Stop for a while; you have been commanded to do a thing and I have been commanded to do a thing. That which you are commanded to do (viz. to take my life) will not escape you, but that which I am commanded to do (viz. to observe Maghrib Salaat) will escape me. Let me do as I am commanded.” He then called for water, made a fresh Wudhu and performed Maghrib Salaat. After this, he laid himself on the bed, closed his eyes and gave up his life.”
Fazaail-e-Sadaqaat (Virtues of Charity), [English Translation], Chapter IX, page 609-610, (2nd South African Impression 1414-1993. Published by Waterval Islamic Institute, Johannesburg)
The anti-Shia movements belonging to Deoband school of thought should take a good long look at this reference. Not only did one of their beloved Imams know the place and time of his death, he even made the Angel of Death wait until he finished his prayers. Next time the followers of Sipah-e-Sahabah (kr-hcy.com) while mocking at the Shia belief on Imamate should not forget to read the aforesaid capabilities and authorities of their revered scholar.
Three – Ahl’ul Sunnah believe that Shaykh Abdul Qadir Jilani was given more authority over deaths than the angel of death
About Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani the ‘Ghaus al-Aazam’ we read in the Ahl’ul Sunnah’s text ‘Tafreeh al-Khatir fi Manaqib al-Sheikh Abdul Qadir’ as follows:
“It is narrated from Sheikh-e-Kabeer Syed Ahmed Rafa’i that once a servant of Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jeelani died and his wife came to Sheikh Jeelani and cried and lamented infront of him and demanded that her husband’s soul may be retrieved. Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani looked into the spiritual world and saw that the angel of death is going towards the skies with all the souls that he has taken out during the day.
Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani called upon the angel and asked for the soul of his servant, but the angel of death refused to comply and said that he had taken out the souls on Allah’s order and would only submit the souls to him, on this Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jeelani used his divine powers and pulled the virtual container that was in shape of a sack that contained the spirits and took out the soul of his servant, just as the top of the sack opened, all the souls came out and went back to their respective bodies.
At this the angel of death started crying and pleaded to Allah and said that O Lord! You know that I had a dispute with your beloved and your Wali Abdul Qadir and he attacked me with his powers and took away all the souls that i had captured today. At this Allah said to angel of death that Ghaus-e-Azam is my beloved and my desire, why didnt you return his servant’s soul? And due to a single soul you had to lose all other souls too and now you are standing embarrassed.”
Tafreeh al-Khatir fi Manaqib-al-Sheikh Abdul Qadir, Volume 5, page 12 (published in Egypt in 1339 A.H)
If the Ahl’ul Sunnah have no objections in believing that Allah (swt) had given Shaykh Jilani more authority over deaths than the angel of death then why the objection if the Shi’a believe that the Imams of Ahlulbayt (as) being the true successors of Holy Prophet (s) possessed a control over deaths?
: The Imams knowledge over whether a person is destined for Heaven or Hell
In his article ‘Al-Kafi or Al-Kufr?’
Ibn al Hashimi states:
“By listening to the voice of a person, the Imams can tell if the person was destined to go to hell or to heaven; they would thus answer his questions accordingly.” (Usool Al-Kafi, p. 185)
As part of the inheritance acquired through the Prophet (s) the Imams (as) acquired possession of a text that provided the contents of all the people of Hellfire, that accordingly enabled them to respond to a question in a certain manner. We read this authentic Sunni hadithin Sunan Tirmidhi, Volume 4 page 449 Hadith No. 2141, narrated by Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-’Asi:
The Messenger of Allah (s) came out to us, and he was holding two books in his hands. He asked us: “Do you know what these books are?” We answered: “No, O Messenger of Allah, except if you tell us”. Then he said about the book in his right hand: “This book, from the Lord of the Worlds, contains the names of ALL the people of Paradise, their names, the names of their fathers and tribes. The book has compiled all their names from the first to the very last, and nothing more is added to it and nothing is missing from it!” Then, the Messenger of Allah (s) talked about the book in his left hand: “This book, from the Lord of the Worlds, contains the names of ALL the people of Hellfire, their names, the names of their fathers and tribes. The book has compiled all their names from the first to the very last, and nothing more is added to it and nothing is missing from it!”
It is also recorded in Musnad Ahmad, Volume 6 page 132 Hadith 6563 while its annotator Shaykh Ahmad Muhammad Shakir stated: ’Its chain is Sahih’. Moreover Shaykh al-Albaani too has declared it Sahih in his Mishkat al-Masabih, Volume 1 page 21.
This hadith demonstrates that the Holy Prophet (s) indeed had knowledge of who was to go to Paradise and who was to go to Hellfire! Besides, the books are written in spiritual codes, and revealed like the Qur’an. Thus, any successor of the Holy Prophet (s) that inherits the books too must be one pure enough for them, and able to decipher the spiritual codes. The Imams (as) were able to do just that and were accordingly equipped with the ability to ascertain whether a person was destined for Heaven or Hell merely through the tone of his voice.
- Defining the concept of Imamate
- The doctrine of Imamah from a Sunni perspective
- The Takwini and Tashri’i authorities of Prophets and Imams
- The doctrine of Imamate from a Shi’a perspective (Part I)
- The doctrine of Imamate from a Shi’a perspective (Part II)
- The Doctrine of Imamate from a Shi’a perspective (Part III)
- The doctrine of Imamate from a Shi’a perspective (Part IV)
- The Doctrine of Imamate from a Shi’a perspective (Part V)
- The doctrine of Imamate from the Qur’an
- Obeying the Ul’il Amr
- Nasibi objection at the false claimants of Imamate
- The Nasibi methodology of producing the Abdullah Ibn Saba card to negate the doctrine of Imamate
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