‘Ali was Instrumental in Executing the Hudud
Hereunder I would like to establish that ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, just like the rest of the Sahabah, was very instrumental in carrying out the Hudud (penal law) of Allah. There are many a narrations that allude to this. I present a few before you:
عن محمد بن المنكدر أن خالد بن الوليد كتب إلي أبي بكر أنه وجد رجلا في بعض نواحي العرب ينكح كما تنكح المرأة فجمع لذلك أبو بكر أصحاب رسول الله صلي الله عليه وسلم فيهم علي بن أبي طالب. فقال إنه ذنب لم تعمل به أمة إلا أمة واحدة ففعل الله بهم ما قد علمتم اري أن تحرقه بالنار فاجتمع رأي أصحاب رسول الله صلي الله عليه وسلم أن يحرق بالنار فحرقه خالد.
Muhammad ibn al Munkadir narrates that Khalid ibn al Walid wrote to Abu Bakr informing him that he found a person who is accustomed to sodomy. Abu Bakr thereupon consulted the senior Sahabah of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, a whom was ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib. He suggested, “No nation had ever indulged in such a heinous crime besides one and you all are aware of how Allah had dealt with them. Therefore, I suggest that he be incinerated.” Subsequently this is what they agreed upon. Consequently, Khalid had him incinerated.
Note:- For the consolation of the scholars, the following is mentioned in Mirqat, the commentary of Mishkat:
والإحراق بالنار وإن نهي عنه كما ذكر ه ابن عباس لكنه جوز للتشد يد بالكفار والمبالغة في النكاية والنكال كالمثلة
And incineration even though is prohibited as is stated by Ibn ‘Abbas. However, when intended to inflict severe or exemplary punishment upon the disbelievers it is allowed like mutilation.
Imam Abu Yusuf has cited the following narration in his Kitab al Kharaj under the chapter pertaining to penal law. By means of this narration the practice of these illustrious people becomes evident:
عن حصين عن علي كرم الله وجهه قال جلد رسول الله صلي الله عليه وسلم أربعين وأبوبكر أربعين وكملها عمر بن الخطاب رضي الله عنه ثمانين ولكل سنة يعني في الخمر.
Hussain narrates from ‘Ali that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had lashed a person who had consumed wine forty lashes. So did Abu Bakr. Thereafter, ‘Umar had increased the punishment and made it eighty lashes. And this is all Sunnah.
Likewise, ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu would during his reign apply the same punishment upon those who would consume wine. This further corroborates the practice of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma and also alludes to the unity that they enjoyed.
In order to satisfy the readers I present before you the practice of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu in this regard from Furu’ al Kafi of al Kulayni. The narration reads as follows:
إن في كتاب علي صلوات الله وسلامه عليه يضرب شارب الخمر ثمانين.
One of the instructions of ‘Ali underlined in his letter was: a consumer of wine should be lashed eighty times.
Summary of all Four Themes
The most robust of evidences with regard to the unity and harmony of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and the Sahabah, including Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu is the fact that he played an integral role in the above mentioned aspects. Similarly his participation is clear proof of the legitimacy of the Khilafah of Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu and that it was free from any sort of oppression and vice.
If the Khilafah of Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was unjust and based upon transgression, then how can it ever be conceivable that ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu supported such an invalid rule his entire life despite the command of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala to do the exact opposite. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala says in the Qur’an:
وَتَعَاوَنُوْا عَلَى الْبِرِّ وَالتَّقْوٰىۖ وَلَا تَعَاوَنُوْا عَلَى الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللّٰهَۖ إِنَّ اللّٰهَ شَدِيْدُ الْعِقَابِ
And cooperatively help one another in matters of righteousness and piety and do not lend a helping hand in matters of vice and transgression. And Fear Allah. Verily the castigation of Allah is severe.”
These are all issues that should induce a fair and Allah conscious person to mull over and take heed.
Finally, at the end of the fourth theme I find it fitting to cite a narration wherein mention is made of fulfilment of promises. This incident is derived from both Sunni and Shia sources. Hence, Sheikh al Ta’ifah, Abu Jafar al Tusi, has made mention of this incident in his Amali with its chain of transmission:
عن حبشي بن جنادة قال كنت جالسا عند ابي بكر فأتاه رجل فقال يا خليفة رسول الله صلي الله عليه وسلم ان رسول الله وعدني ان يحثو لي ثلاث حثيات من تمر فقال ابو بكر ادعو الي عليا فجاءه علي فقال ابو بكر يا ابا الحسن ان هاذا يذكر ان رسول الله وعده ان يحثو له ثلاث حثيات من تمر فأحتها له فحثا له ثلاث حثيات من تمر فقال ابو بكر عدوها فوجدوا في كل حثية ستين تمرة فقال ابو بكر صدق رسول الله سمعته ليلة البحرة و نحن خارجون من مكة الي المدينة يقول يا ابا بكر كفي و كف علي في العدل سواء.
Habshi ibn Junadah narrates, “I was seated by Abu Bakr when a person came to him and said, “O Khalifah of Rasulullah! Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had promised to give me three handfuls of dates.” Abu Bakr told him, “Call ‘Ali for me.” When he came, Abu Bakr told him, “O Abu al Hassan! This person is claiming that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam promised him three handfuls of dates, so give him three handfuls. ‘Ali complied and gave him three handfuls of dates. Thereafter Abu Bakr demanded, “Count them.” When they counted them they found six dates in one handful. Thereupon Abu Bakr remarked, “Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has spoken the truth. On the night of migration whilst we were on our way from Makkah to Madinah I heard him saying, “my palm and the palm of ‘Ali are identical in terms of equality.”
The Lessons Derived From This Narration
- Abu Bakr fulfilled the promises of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Fulfilling the promises of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was his duty.
- Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu had accompanied his master Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam on the momentous journey of hijrah.
- ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu would lend a helping hand in seeing to the affairs of the khilafah.
- These narrations and others of its nature are open evidence of the affection and veneration that they exuded for one another. Never was there ever any animosity between them.
- We can likewise extrapolate from this narration that if Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu fulfilled the promises of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam which he made to ordinary people then he would have definitely fulfilled the promises and bequests which Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam made for his children. He most certainly had not slacked in seeing to the rights of the family of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.
The conflict can be resolved by merely reflecting over these narrations and issues that were presented in the previous. I have just alluded to a few of many such narrations and incidents.
 Al Sunan al Kubra 8/232: Chapter on penal law; al Targhib wa al Tarhib, Chapter on penal law; Kanz al ‘Ummal, 3/99; al Zawajir ‘an Iqtiraf al Kaba’ir, 2/119.
 Mirqat, 7: 104.
 Kitab al Kharaj, 165; al Musannaf li ‘Abdur Razzaq, 7: 379.
 Furu’ al Kafi, 3: 117.
 Riyad al Nadirah 2/217; Amali al Sheikh al Tusi 1/66-67Back to top