The Fourth Narration

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The Fourth Narration

 

‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

 

والذي فلق الحبة وبرأ النسمة إنه لعهد النبي الأمي صلى الله عليه وسلم إلي أن لا يحبني إلا مؤمن ولا يبغضني إلا منافق

By him who split the seed and created life, the unlettered Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam gave me a promise that no one but a believer would love me, and none but a hypocrite would nurse a grudge against me.[1]

 

Commentary and Lessons Learnt from this Narration:

1. There lay great virtue for Amir al Mu’minin ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu in this narration; loving him is belief and harbouring ill against him is hypocrisy. Imam Abu Hafs ibn Shahin says, “This virtue is specific to ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu, no one besides him has been given this glad tiding.”

 

2. This narration is an inspiration for loving and following in the footsteps of ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

 

3. Similarly, this narration issues a great warning to those who harbour ill against him. Those that do this are nothing less than hypocrites.

 

4. Loving ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu is a sign of faith. This love though should be true and sincere. Sincere love; by way of following his ways and character brought to us through authentic narrations. As for those who make him an agency of their lies and erect their faith on this, truly holds a deep grudge against him which results in hypocrisy.

 

5. Abu Nuaim al Asbahani rahimahu Llah writes in his book al Imamah:

 

فإن احتج بقوله لعلي إنه لا يحبك إلا مؤمن ولا يبغضك إلا منافق. قلنا هكذا نقول ، وهذه من أشهر الفضائل وأبين المناقب، لا يبغضه إلا منافق ، ولا يحبه إلا مؤمن ، ولو أوجب هذا الخبر الخلافة لوجبت إذا الخلافة للأنصار لأنه قال مثله في الأنصار لا يحبهم إلا مؤمن ولا يبغضهم إلا منافق فمن أحبهم أحبه الله ومن أبغضهم أبغضه الله[2]

If it is argued that this narration which speaks of great virtue with regard to ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu necessitates his khilafah, then it would necessitate the same for the Ansar as Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said the same regrading them:

لا يحبهم إلا مؤمن ولا يبغضهم إلا منافق فمن أحبهم أحبه الله ومن أبغضهم أبغضه الله

Only a believer loves them and only a hypocrite hates them. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala loves he who loves them, and Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam detests he who harbours ill feeling towards them.[3]

 

6. Many virtues have been mentioned regarding ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu, however the narrations that speak of the virtues of the other three Khalifas’ are greater and the more authentic. The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum were in agreement the other three Khalifas’ enjoy a higher status. Imam al Bukhari rahimahu Llah narrates the following on the authority of Ibn ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma:

 

كنا لا نعدل بأبي بكر أحدا ثم عمر ثم عثمان ، ثم نترك أصحاب رسول الله – صلى الله عليه وسلم – فلا نفاضل بينهم

We considered Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu as peerless, and then ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, and then ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu (coming next to him in superiority) and then we would not to differentiate between the Companions of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.[4]

 

Another narration from Muhammad ibn ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib who is famously known as Muhammad ibn al Hanafiyah reads as follows:

 

قلت لأبي أي الناس خير بعد رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قال أبو بكر قلت ثم من قال ثم عمر وخشيت أن يقول عثمان قلت ثم أنت قال ما أنا إلا رجل من المسلمين

I said to my father, “Which of the people after the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is best?”

He replied, “Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu.”

I then asked, “Who comes next?”

He said, “‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu.”

I was then afraid of asking him who came next, and he might mention ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu, so I said, “You came next, O my father?”

He said, “I am only a man among the Muslims.”[5]

 

Ibn Taymiyyah writes in his book al Minhaj:

 

وقول من قال صح لعلي من الفضائل مالم يصح لغيره كذب لا يقوله أحمد ولا غيره من أئمة الحديث لكن قد يقال روي له ما لم يرو لغيره لكن أكثر ذلك من نقل من علم كذبه أو خطؤه

The statement, ‘narrations regarding the virtues of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu are more authentic than for others’ is a lie. Neither did Imam Ahmed say this nor did any of the other scholars of hadith say it. Yes, the following may be said, “There are more narrations to his credit than there is to others.” However, many of these narrations are fabrications.[6]

 

He further writes:

 

وأحمد بن حنبل لم يقل إنه صحّ لعلي من الفضائل مالم يصح لغيره، بل أحمد أجلّ من أن يقول مثل هذا الكذب، بل نقل عنه أنه قال: روي له مالم يرو لغيره. مع أنّ في نقل هذا عن أحمد كلاماً ليس هذا موضعه

Ahmed ibn Hanbal did not say, ‘narrations regarding the virtues of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu are more authentic than for others ’. Imam Ahmed was a far greater man than to have said such lies. Yes, the following has been narrated from him, “There are more narrations to his credit than there is to others.” However, this statement of his has not been fully authenticated either.[7]

 

7. In the instance of a group amongst the masses turning against the leader, it is in his interest to remind them of his good and nobility. This will not be considered bragging, rather it will be a means of unifying the factions.

 

8. This narration is an indication to the truth of prophethood. A group had rallied against ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu after the prophetic era. This narration serves as a warning for them and those who tread their path. May Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala save us from hypocrisy.

 

9. Question: What is the connection between loving ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and faith? Similarly, what links hate towards him with hypocrisy?

Answer: The books of Ahadith are replete with narrations that portray the immense strength ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu lent to Islam together with his scrupulousness and sublime character. When one therefore loves him, he is showing love for these acts and accomplishments which translates as a sign of faith. On the other hand, if one shows disdain for him, he is showing disdain for his accomplishments in the field of Islam which can only be understood as hypocrisy. The above criteria of love equalling faith, is with respect to all the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, as is understood by the narration expounding the virtue of the Ansar:

 

لا يحبهم إلا مؤمن ولا يبغضهم إلا منافق فمن أحبهم أحبه الله ومن أبغضهم أبغضه الله

Only a believer loves them and only a hypocrite hates them. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala loves he who loves them, and Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam detests he who harbours ill feeling towards them.[8]

 

Question: If all the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum enjoy the same virtue, why is ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu being referred to specifically?

Answer: This was probably due to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam having knowledge of the different factions that will appear during his khilafah. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had foreseen and prophesised certain details of this as well. This narration was to make the ummah understand the relevance and legitimacy of his khilafah together with warning those who would oppose him.

 

10. Question: Will those Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum who fought against ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu at Jamal (The Battle of the Camel were believers were on both sides) be a reflection of the narration, “and none but a hypocrite would nurse a grudge against me”?

Answer: The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum were all authorities in Islamic law (Mujtahidin), searching for the truth. A true mujtahid will not be taken to task for a conclusion he comes to, this being a principle law of Shari’ah.

The position taken by the Ahlus Sunnah wa al Jama’ah with regards to the disputes of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum is of adopting silent neutrality as both parties were Mujtahidin. Another point worthy of note is, amongst those that fought against him were the Ansar who were also given the same glad tidings!

 

لا يحبهم إلا مؤمن ولا يبغضهم إلا منافق فمن أحبهم أحبه الله ومن أبغضهم أبغضه الله

Only a believer loves them and only a hypocrite hates them. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala loves he who loves them, and Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam detests he who harbours ill feeling towards them.[9]

 

Let us look at and dissect the meaning of the following narration:

 

عن عبد الله بن بريدة عن أبيه رضي الله عنه قال بعث النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم عليا إلى خالد ليقبض الخمس وكنت أبغض عليا وقد اغتسل فقلت لخالد ألا ترى إلى هذا فلما قدمنا على النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ذكرت ذلك له فقال يا بريدة أتبغض عليا فقلت نعم قال لا تبغضه فإن له في الخمس أكثر من ذلك

‘Abdullah ibn Buraydah radiya Llahu ‘anhu narrates from his father, The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam sent ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu to Khalid radiya Llahu ‘anhu to retrieve the booty whilst I disliked ‘Ali. ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu had taken a bath I said to Khalid, “Don’t you see him (i.e. ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu)?” When we reached the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam I mentioned that to him.

He said, “O Buraydah! Do you dislike ‘Ali?”

I said, “Yes.”

He said, “Do not dislike him, for he deserves more than that from the booty.”

 

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam did not brand Buraydah radiya Llahu ‘anhu a disbeliever or the like thereof, nor did he instruct ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu to insult or kill him. This narration proves that mere dislike based on disagreements does not constitute hypocrisy. Dislike based on matters of din and its spreading will constitute hypocrisy.

 

11. A scholar should not take oaths except in grave matters.

 

12. The leader must delegate tasks to only those who can administer them.

 

13. The Ahlul Bayt have the responsibility of reminding the masses of the nobility if they see aversion from certain factions thereby saving the ummah from going against the advices of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

 

14. The permissibility of taking oaths upon the truth to emphasise ones point.

 

15. If a person needs to recount his virtue to attaining his right, he is rightfully permitted to do so.

 

16. The Batiniyyah sect cannot claim his love. The narration is clear; only those that are Mu’minin truly have love for ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Their claim is false rendering them hypocrites.

 

NEXT⇒ The Fifth Narration


[1] Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 78

[2] Kitab al Imamah wa al Rad ‘ala al Rafidah, pg. 244.

[3] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3572.

[4] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3697.

[5] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3671.

[6] Al Minhaj, vol. 8 pg. 421.

[7] Al Minhaj, vol. 7 pg. 374.

[8] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3572.

[9] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3572.