To summarise the fitnah: During the latter years of the caliphate of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu, signs of disorganisation and unrest in the Islamic community began appearing on the horizon which were the outcome of certain factors. These factors led to a major fitnah emerging between the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum. Some of these factors are listed hereunder:
حب قريش عثمان
أحبك و الرحمن
I love you, by Rahman,
The way the Quraysh love ‘Uthman.
Thereafter, the riff raff became audacious against him due to his soft nature, which he himself attests to:
أتدرون ما جرأكم علي ما جرأكم على إلا حلمي
Do you know what made you daring against me? Nothing but my tolerance.
Certain Jews waited eagerly for the opportunity of an emergence by capitalising on these factors, while observing Taqiyyah and outwardly displaying Islam. Among them was the Jew, ‘Abdullah ibn Saba’, with the title Ibn al Sawda’, who expressed his Islam during the reign of Sayyidina ‘Uthman ibn ‘Affan radiya Llahu ‘anhu. He became more well-known than others. This was due to him outwardly embracing Islam at a later stage and being active in the cities of Sham, Iraq, and Egypt particularly; just as it became manifest from the Khawarij and hostile avengers. He conceived plans and voiced destructive opinions which majority of the early historians have recorded in their books. Their chief, Imam al Tabari, considered him (Ibn Saba’) the head of the fitnah and the basis of the adversity.
The gist of his conspiracy is that he presented factual premises upon which he built false ideologies which teased the tastebuds of the naïve, extremists, and those enslaved by passions. He treaded crooked paths in this regard, confusing those around him, until they rallied around him. He began knocking on the door of the glorious Qur’an, to interpret it in accordance with his warped ideology. He claimed Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam reappearance by saying:
Amazing indeed that one who believes that ‘Isa will reappear is incorrect when he claims that Muhammad will reappear, whereas Allah―the Mighty and Majestic―has promised:
إِنَّ الَّذِيْ فَرَضَ عَلَيْكَ الْقُرْآنَ لَرَادُّكَ إِلىٰ مَعَادٍ
Most certainly, the One Who has ordained the Qur’an for you will (ultimately) bring you back home (to Makkah).
Muhammad is, thus, more deserving of reappearing than ‘Isa.
His warped ideology was accepted and the doctrine of Raj’ah (reappearance) was concocted for them which they began propagating.
He told them, “There were one thousand Messengers and each Messenger had a wasi (successor), and ‘Ali is the wasi of Muhammad.” He then said, “Muhammad is the seal of the Prophets and ‘Ali is the seal of the awsiya’ (successors).” When this matter settled in the hearts of his followers, he set into motion his planned target: rebellion against the khalifah, Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. This met the approval of the passion of many people. He announced, “Who is more oppressive than the one who did not sanction the bequest of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, pounced on Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam wasi, and usurped authority over the ummah.” He then told them, “‘Uthman took hold of it unlawfully. This man (with reference to ‘Ali) is the wasi of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Rise up for this matter and give it movement. Begin by criticising your governors. Express enjoining good and forbidding evil, attracting people and inviting them to this cause.”
He found among the bedouins the perfect element to execute his conspiracy. He attracted the Qurra’ among them from the angle of enjoining good and forbidding evil and those with ulterior motives by stirring their emotions with biased fabricated propaganda against ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu, e.g. him preferring his relatives and bestowing liberally upon them wealth from the treasury of the Muslims, securing the pasture for himself, coupled with a number of other allegations against Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu, which stirred the emotions of the hooligans.
Majority of these accusations are lies and allegations which they falsely attributed to Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Some are ijtihadi matters, which deal with administrative issues. Moreover, a number of these accusations were believed to be initiated and practiced by the Khalifas before him. Nonetheless, they exploited Sayyidina ‘Uthman’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu clemency. He did not have the nature of Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu so they became bold towards him. The prejudiced were not content with this. They began forging letters in the names of senior Sahabah, like Sayyidina ‘Ali, Sayyidina Talhah, Sayyidina Zubair, and Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anhum which they sent to various cities, commanding the residents to advance and kill Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
The fury of the hoodlums was aggravated and they advanced from their respective cities towards Madinah, thinking that din had reached its limit of evil. As soon as they reached Madinah, they laid siege to Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu and put forward their demands which included him relinquishing the caliphate or death. Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu refused to step down due to Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam command:
يا عثمان إن الله مقمصك قميصا فإن أرادك المنافقون على أن تخلعه فلا تخلعه لهم و لا كرامة
O ‘Uthman, certainly, Allah will clothe you with a throbe. If the hypocrites intend to remove it, do not ever remove it for their sake.
Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam told him this twice or thrice. In another narration, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam told him:
يا عثمان إن الله عز و جل عسى أن يلبسك قميصا فإن أرادك المنافقون على خلعه فلا تخلعه حتى تلقاني يا عثمان إن الله عسى أن يلبسك قميصا فإن أرادك المنافقون على خلعه فلا تخلعه حتى تلقاني
O ‘Uthman, indeed Allah―the Mighty and Majestic―will probably clothe you with a garment. Should the hypocrites force you to remove it, do not remove it until you meet me. O ‘Uthman, indeed Allah will probably clothe you with a garment. Should the hypocrites force you to remove it, do not remove it until you meet me.
A large group of Sahabah, the likes of Sayyidina Abu Hurairah, Sayyidina Ibn ‘Umar, Sayyidina Hassan, Sayyidina Hussain, and Sayyidina Ibn al Zubair radiya Llahu ‘anhum, gathered by Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu to protect and defend him. When the siege grew intense, Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu commanded them with determination to drop their weapons, leave his presence, and remain put in their homes in order to protect the blood of Muslims.
‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amir ibn Rabi’ah said:
كنت مع عثمان في الدار فقال اعزم على كل من رأى أن عليه سمعا و طاعة إلا كف يده و سلاحه و جاءه زيد بن ثابت فقال له إن هؤلاء الأنصار بالباب يقولون إن شئت كنا أنصار الله مرتين قال عثمان لا حاجة لي في ذلك كفوا و عرف رضي الله عنه أنه مقتول و قد أسر له صلى الله عليه و سلم بهذه الفتنة و لما استئذن على النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم و هو في حائط من حيطان المدينة قال لأبي موسى افتح له و بشره بالجنة على بلوى تصيبه
I was with ‘Uthman in the house when he announced, “I make a determination upon everyone who regards my obedience mandatory upon him to restrain his hand and weapon.
Zaid ibn Thabit approached him and said, “Here are the Ansar at the door announcing that if you wish, they will become the Ansar of Allah twice.”
‘Uthman said, “I do not have any need for this. Hold your weapons!” 
He, may Allah be pleased with him, knew that he was going to be killed. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had secretly informed him of this fitnah. Moreover, when he sought permission to enter Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam presence when the latter was in one of the orchards of Madinah, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam commanded Abu Musa, “Open for him and give him glad tidings of Jannat after a calamity befalls him.”
Ibn Taymiyyah affirms:
و من المعلوم بالتواتر أن عثمان كان من أكف الناس عن الدماء و أصبر الناس على من نال من عرضه و على من سعى في دمه فحاصروه و سعوا في قتله و قد عرف إرادتهم لقتله و قد جاءه المسلمون من كل ناحية ينصرونه و يشيرون عليه بقتالهم و هو يأمر الناس بالكف عن القتال و يأمر من يطيعه أن لا يقاتلهم و روى أنه قال لمماليكه من كف يده فهو حر و قيل له تذهب إلى مكة فقال لا أكون ممن ألحد في الحرم فقيل له تذهب إلى الشام فقال لا أفارق دار هجرتي فقيل له فقاتلهم فقال لا أكون أول من خلف محمدا في أمته بالسيف فكان صبر عثمان حتى قتل من أعظم فضائله عند المسلمين
It is known through tawatur that ‘Uthman was the most cautious of people from spilling blood and the most perseverant upon those who attacked his honour and worked towards assassinating him, by besieging him and endeavouring to kill him. He was well-aware of their intention to kill him. Meanwhile, Muslims from every corner had come to him to support him and indicated to him to fight the rebels. He, on the other hand, would order the people to desist from fighting and command those who obeyed him not to fight them.
It is reported that he said to his slaves, “Whomsoever withholds his hand is emancipated.”
He was told to go to Makkah, to which he said, “I will not be one to commit ilhad (heresy) in the haram.”
He was told to go to Sham, to which he replied, “I will not separate from the abode of my emigration.”
He was told to fight them, hearing which he retorted, “I will not be the first to succeed Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in his ummah with the sword.”
Thus, ‘Uthman’s perseverance till martyrdom is among the greatest of his virtues according to the Muslims.
Thereafter, the Sahabah who were in Madinah pledged allegiance to Sayyidina ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu as khalifah and no one disputed with him over it.
Ibn Hazm says:
و أما أم المؤمنين و الزبيرو طلحة رضي الله عنهم و من كان معهم فما أبطلوا قط إمامة علي و لا طعنوا فيها و لا ذكروا فيه جرحة تحط عن الإمامة و لا أحدثوا إمامة أخرى و لا جددوا بيعة لغيره هذا ما لا يقدر أن يدعيه أحد بوجه من الوجوه بل يقطع كل ذي علم على أن كل ذلك لم يكن فإن كان لا شك في كل هذا فقد صح صحة ضرورية لا إشكال فيها أنهم لم يمضوا إلى البصرة لحرب علي و لا خلافا عليه و لا نقضا لبيعته و لو أرادوا ذلك لأحدثوا بيعة غير بيعته هذا ما لا يشك فيه أحد و لا ينكره أحد فصح أنهم إنما نهضوا إلى البصرة لسد الفتق الحادث في الإسلام من قتل أمير المؤمنين عثمان رضي الله عنه ظلما و كان علي رضي الله عنه يرى تأخير القصاص حتى يستتب له الأمر لا سيما و أن اشترك في قتله كثير فكان يقول لهم يا إخوتاه إني لست أجهل ما تعلمون و لكني كيف أصنع بقوم يملكوننا و لا نملكهم ها هم هؤلاء قد ثارت معهم عبدانكم و ثابت إليهم أعرابكم و هم خلالكم يسومونكم ما شاؤوا فهم ترون موضعا لقدرة على شيء مما تريدون قالوا لا قال فلا والله لا أرى إلا رأيا ترونه إن شاء الله
Regarding Umm al Mu’minin, Zubair, Talhah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, and those with them, they never falsified ‘Ali’s leadership, nor criticised it, nor mentioned any flaw in him which makes him unworthy of leadership, nor undertook another leadership, nor pledged bay’ah to someone besides him. This is something which no one can ever claim from any angle. To the contrary, every man of knowledge will declare with conviction that none of this happened. When there is not the slightest of doubt in this, then it is undoubtedly and definitely correct to assert that they did not travel to Basrah with the intention to fight ‘Ali, oppose him, or break his bay’ah. Had they intended this; they would have undertaken another bay’ah besides his. This is a fact which no one can doubt nor reject. Thus, it is evident that they travelled to Basrah to fill the crack caused in Islam by the unjust murder of Amir al Mu’minin ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu opined to delay the qisas until everything was settled, especially since countless entities had participated in his killing. He would say to them [those demanding qisas], “O my beloved brothers! I am not ignorant of what you know. However, how do I deal with a nation who control us and we do not control them? Here they are, your slaves have joined them and your bedouins have reinforced them. They are amidst you and can do to you as they please. Do you see any opportunity to enforce anything you want?”
They replied, “No.”
He said, “By Allah, I only hold the same view as you, Allah willing.”
Ibn Taymiyyah writes:
و لم يكن ممكنا من أن يعمل كل ما يريده من إقامة الحدود و نحو ذلك لكون الناس مختلفين عليه و عسكره و أمراء عسكره غير مطيعين له في كل ما كان يأمرهم به
He was unable to implement everything he intended, like establishing the hudud, etc., since the people were in disagreement over him and his army and the leaders of his army were not obeying him in everything he ordered them to do.
Amir al Mu’minin Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu would curse the killers of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Muhammad ibn al Hanafiyyah states:
سمعت أبي و رفع يديه حتى يرى بياض إبطيه و قال اللهم العن قتلة عثمان في البر و البحر و السهل و الجبل ثلاثا يرددها
I heard my father, after lifting his hands extensively until the whiteness of his armpits could be seen, supplicating, “O Allah, curse the killers of ‘Uthman on land and water, in the plains and mountains.” He repeated this thrice.
Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu went to meet Sayyidina Talhah and Sayyidina Zubair radiya Llahu ‘anhuma with the intention of reconciliation, unity, and agreement. War was not intended from either side. The peace deal was about to conclude between Sayyidina Talhah and Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhuma prior to the Battle of Jamal. They slept the night, resolute upon reconciliation, and peacefully like never before, due to the security they aspired for and steering clear from what those who desired evil desired. On the other hand, those who incited against Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu spent the worst night they had ever spent, among them was Ibn Saba’, the Jew. They were apprehensive of destruction. They began consulting each other through the night until they settled to ignite the flames of war secretly before both parties decided to kill them in retaliation. They concealed this out of fear that their evil efforts be exposed.
The next morning, while their fellow men were unaware of them, they began to carry out their sinister plan stealthily under the cover of darkness. The members of Mudar of one army went to the members of Mudar of the other army, and so did the people of Rabi’ and the people of Yemen, and then attacked them with weapons. The people of Basrah countered the attack. Every tribe countered their counterparts who had attacked them. The people of Basrah fought those men until they pushed them back to their army. Meanwhile, Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and the people of Kufah heard the noise. The conspirators had placed a man close to Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu to inform him of what they wanted. When Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu asked as to what was happening, the person said, “We woke up to the sudden night attack of the other army. We, thus, repulsed them whence they came. We found them on foot so we mounted. And the people attacked.” The killers of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu made both sides think that the other had deceived them, and, thus, the fitnah, the Battle of Jamal, broke out whereas it was not the intention of either side. A large number of people were killed including Sayyidina Talhah and Sayyidina Zubair radiya Llahu ‘anhuma.
Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu was stationed in Sham. He demanded the killers of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu and refused to enter the bay’ah until his demand was fulfilled. He did not contest Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu over the caliphate. He only placed the condition of handing over the killers for he deemed himself the wali (guardian) of his blood. Sayyidina ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu joined him and did not participate in the Battle of Jamal as he was in Palestine at the time. Thereafter, the major fitnah, the Battle of Siffin, took place.
The gist is that this fitnah had involved the best of men after Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Their views and ijtihad differed. Some of them considered Amir al Mu’minin Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu to be in the right. Others viewed Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu to be correct in demanding the killers of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. There was a third group, large in number, who distanced themselves from fighting for they understood it to be a fitnah, and the one seated is better than the one standing. Thereafter, some of those who remained aloof joined Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu in the fight after Sayyidina ‘Ammar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was martyred due to the declaration of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam:
ويح عمار تقتله الفئة الباغية
Woe for ‘Ammar. The rebellious party will kill him.
It becomes evident from this explanation, O benevolent brother, that the matter was an ijtihadi affair; the one correct in judgement will receive double reward and the one who erred will obtain a single reward. The one who erred did so according to his interpretation. May Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala be pleased with them all.
It is an acknowledged fact that the dispute between the two factions in the era of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum resulted in widespread evil and a major fitnah, some of the unpleasant results of which were: the Battle of Jamal and the Battle of Siffin. These are two major clashes which claimed the souls of the best of mankind after the Prophets ‘alayh al Salam.
Had what transpired between them not been documented in our history and not been transmitted from generation to generation, we would have brushed it off as a fantasy and a tale from the older generations, since it is an unforeseeable occurrence. In fact, they themselves never expected the matter to lead them to battle in which limbs and lives were lost.
Though this event is established and archived in our history, our hearts wither, nay shatter, by reading it. We, nevertheless, pacify ourselves by affirming that it was a matter decreed by Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala and there is none to thwart His decree. At the end, they were human and as such had occasional lapses in judgement. They were two huge factions, as described by the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in his statement in favour of his grandson Sayyidina Hassan ibn ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhuma:
إن ابني هذا سيد و لعل الله أن يصلح به بين فئتين عظيمتين من المسلمين
This grandson of mine is a leader. Probably, Allah will unite through him two major factions of Muslims.
And his salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement:
تمرق مارقة في فرقة من الناس فيلي قتلهم أولى الطائفتين بالحق
A group will disaffiliate at a time of dissension among the people; the party, among two parties, which is closer to the truth, will fight them.
Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam―who does not speak of his own desire―described both factions as huge and believers. He also affirmed that the one closer to the truth is the one that fights the Khawarij, and that faction is undoubtedly the army of Amir al Mu’minin Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Hence, both factions exercised ijtihad and resolved to fight―may Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala forgive them all. It is common custom that when dissension leads to war, it results in each faction labelling the other erroneous and invoking curses upon the other. In fact, due to human demands, sometimes the matter leads to profanity at the time of an outburst of anger. Accordingly, reports of this nature have reached us, and I have avoided listing them among the misconceptions, since something greater transpired between the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, i.e. war. Nonetheless, the reports which contain the statements of some about others have been supplemented with nasty additions and crammed with words not part of it. It was, thus, necessary to examine some of these reports to identify the authentic from the faulty and to learn of their suitable interpretations.
Some of these reports are listed hereunder:
Al Tabari narrates this with missing links in the beginning of the chain from Abu Mikhnaf―from ‘Abdul Malik ibn Abi Harrah.
He is Lut ibn Yahya.
‘Abdul Malik ibn Abi Harrah
A similar narration is reported by al Tabari with missing links in the beginning of the chain in which Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu criticises those who rebelled against him and describes them as deceptive and deceitful. This narration is from Abu Mikhnaf―from Malik ibn A’yan―from Zaid ibn Wahb.
Malik ibn A’yan al Juhani
Hence, the report has no authentic chain.
The complete refutation of the decision of deposition in the arbitration episode will appear shortly.
This has been reported in the arbitration and deposition episode on the authority of Abu Mikhnaf. Both the isnad and text of the incident are da’if (weak). The reason for its rejection will appear when discussing the arbitration.
Yes, there are reports asserting that Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu prayed qunut against Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu during the war, as appears in Musnad Abi Hanifah:
حدثنا محمد بن أحمد ثنا بشر بن موسى ثنا المقرئ ثنا أبو حنيفة عن حماد عن إبراهيم عن علقمة قال ما قنت أبو بكر و لا عمر و لا عثمان و ما قنت علي حتى حارب أهل الشام و كان يقنت على معاوية
Muhammad ibn Ahmed narrated to us―Bishr ibn Musa narrated to us―al Muqri’ narrated to us―Abu Hanifah narrated to us―from Hammad―from Ibrahim―from ‘Alqamah who said:
Qunut was not prayed by Abu Bakr, nor ‘Umar, nor ‘Uthman, and nor ‘Ali, except after he fought the people of Sham. He would pray qunut upon Muawiyah.”
There are other chains of the report. Thus, it is hassan in the lowest standard.
Sayyidina ‘Ali’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu qunut upon Sayyidina Muawiyah or Sayyidina ‘Amr radiya Llahu ‘anhuma or criticising them―if accepted as authentic―is not detested since Sayyidina Muawiyah and Sayyidina ‘Amr radiya Llahu ‘anhuma were outside of his obedience. However, they are excused since they exercised ijtihad. May Allah forgive them all.
What is established from Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu is him praying qunut upon Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, not cursing him. The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum were most covetous to hold firmly to din owing to their knowledge of Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement:
من حلف بملة غير الإسلام كاذبا فهو كما قال و من قتل نفسه بشيء عذب به في نار جهنم و لعن المؤمن كقتله و من رمى مؤمنا بكفر فهو كقتله
Whoever swears an oath falsely upon a religion other than Islam, it is as he said. Whoever kills himself with something will be punished with the same in the fire of Jahannam. Cursing a believer is like killing him. Accusing a believer of disbelief is like killing him.
And his salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement:
ليس المؤمن بالطعان و لا اللعان و لا الفاحش و لا البذيء
A believer is never a slanderer, nor does he frequently curse, nor is he immoral, nor shameless.
And his salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement:
لا يكون اللعانون شفعاء و لا شهداء بوم القيامة
Those accustomed to cursing will neither be intercessors nor witnesses on the Day of Qiyamah.
It is reported about Sayyidina ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu that when he walked around the slain in Jamal, he spotted Sayyidina Talhah ibn ‘Ubaidullah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. He began wiping the dust of his face, remarking:
رحمة الله عليك أبا محمد يعز علي أن أراك مجدولا تحت نجوم السماء
May the mercy of Allah descend upon you, O Abu Muhammad! It is burdensome for me to see you felled under the stars of the sky.
He then declared:
إلى الله أشكو عجري و بجري والله لوددت أني كنت مت قبل هذا اليوم بعشرين سنة
To Allah alone do I complain of my worries and distresses. By Allah, how I wish that I had died twenty years before this day.
Ibn Kathir states:
و ثبت عنه أيضا من غير وجه أنه قال إني لأرجو أن أكون أنا و طلحة و الزبير و عثمان ممن قال الله فيهم وَنَزَعْنَا مَا فِيْ صُدُوْرِهِمْ مِّنْ غِلٍّ إِخْوَانًا عَلىٰ سُرُرٍ مُّتَقَابِلِيْنَ
It is established from more than one chain that he (Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu) remarked: “I desire that Talhah, Zubair, ‘Uthman, and I be from those concerning whom Allah declared: We will remove whatever bitterness they had in their hearts. In a friendly manner, they will be on thrones, facing one another.”
In fact, al Dinawari mentioned:
أنه بلغ عليا أن حجر بن عدي و عمرو بن الحمق يظهران شتم معاوية و لعن أهل الشام فأرسل إليهما أن كفا عما يبلغني عنكما فأتياه فقالا يا أمير المؤمنين ألسنا على الحق و هو على الباطل قال بلى ورب الكعبة المسدنة قالوا فلم تمنعنا من شتمهم و لعنهم قال كرهت لكم أن تكونوا شتامين لعانين و لكن قولوا اللهم احقن دمائنا و دمائهم و أصلح ذات بيننا و بينهم و اهدهم من ضلالتهم حتى يعرف الحق من جهله و يرعوي عن الغي من لجج به
News reached ‘Ali that Hujr ibn ‘Adi and ‘Amr ibn al Humq were openly swearing Muawiyah and cursing the people of Sham. He sent word to them, “Stop the action that has reached me about you.”
They approached him and submitted, “O Amir al Mu’minin, are we not upon truth and they upon falsehood?”
He said, “Most definitely, by the Rabb of the cloaked Ka’bah.”
They asked, “Then why do you prevent us from swearing and cursing them?”
He replied, “I dislike that you become swearers and cursers. Rather say, ‘O Allah, spare our blood and their blood, unite us, and guide them from their nonconformity so that the ignorant recognise the truth and those bent on aggression desist from the same.’”
The details are as follows:
روي عن مسروق أنه كان عند عائشة فذكر عندها أن عليا رضي الله عنه قتل ذا الثدية فقالت لي إذا أنت قدمت الكوفة فاكتب لي ناسا ممن شهد ذلك ممن تعرف من أهل البلد فلما قدمت وجدت الناس أشياعا فكتبت لها من كل شيع عشرة ممن شهد ذلك قال فأتيتها بشهادتهم فقالت لعن الله عمرو بن العاص فإنه زعم لي أنه قتله بمصر
It is reported from Masruq that he was in the presence of Aisha when she was told that ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu killed Dhu al Thadiyyah.
She told me, “When you go to Kufah, write the testimony of those individuals of the city you know who witnessed this.”
When I arrived, I found the people in diverse groups. I, thus, wrote the testimonies of ten men of each group who witnessed the event and brought their testimonies to her.
She commented, “May Allah curse ‘Amr ibn al ‘As. He claimed to me that he killed him in Egypt.”
This report is documented by al Hakim:
من طريق جرير بن عبد الحميد عن الأعمش عن أبي وائل عن مسروق قال قالت لي عائشة رضي الله عنها إني رأيتني على تل و حولي بقر تنحر فقلت لها لئن صدقت رؤياك لتكونن حولك ملحمة قالت أعوذ بالله من شرك بئس ما قلت فقلت لها فلعله إن كان أمرا سيسوءك فقال والله لئن أخر من السماء أحب إلي من أن أفعل ذلك فلما كان بعد ذكر عندنا أن عليا رضي الله عنه قتل ذا الثدية فقالت لي إذا أنت قدمت الكوفة فاكتب لي ناسا ممن شهد ذلك ممن تعرف من أهل البلد فلما قدمت وجدت الناس أشياعا فكتبت لها من كل شيع عشرة ممن شهد ذلك قال فأتيتها بشهادتهم فقالت لعن الله عمرو بن العاص فإنه زعم لي أنه قتله بمصر
From the chain of Jarir ibn ‘Abdul Hamid―from al A’mash―from Abu Wa’il―from Masruq who said:
Aisha said to me, “I saw myself (in a dream) on a hill and around me were cattle being slaughtered.”
I said to her, “If your dream is true, a major battle will take place around you.”
“I seek protection in Allah from your evil,” she retorted. “Evil indeed is what you said.”
I said to her, “Probably, if it is some major matter, it will sadden you.”
She said, “By Allah, me falling from the sky is more beloved to me than that.”
Sometime thereafter, mention was made in her presence that ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu had killed Dhu al Thadiyyah.
She told me, “When you go to Kufah, write the testimony of those individuals of the city you know who witnessed this.”
When I arrived, I found the people in several groups. I, thus, wrote the testimonies of ten men of each group who witnessed the event and brought their testimonies to her.
She commented, “May Allah curse ‘Amr ibn al ‘As. He alleged to me that he killed him in Egypt.
Important to note is that Ibn Abi Shaybah documents it from the chain of Abu Muawiyah from al A’mash, without mentioning the killing of Dhu al Thadiyyah and the cursing of Sayyidina ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
Ibn Abi Shaybah reports:
حدثنا أبو معاوية عن الأعمش عن شقيق عن مسروق عن عائشة قالت رأيتني على تل كأن حولي بقرا تنحر فقال مسروق إن استطعت أن لا تكوني أنت هي فافعلي قال فابتليت بذلك رحمها الله
Abu Muawiyah narrated to us―from al A’mash―from Shaqiq―from Masruq―from Aisha who narrated:
I saw myself in a dream on a hill and around me were cattle being slaughtered.
Masruq said, “If you are able not to be the one, then do so.”
He adds: “She was befallen with that; may Allah have mercy upon her.”
The narrator from al A’mash in al Hakim’s report:
Jarir ibn ‘Abdul Hamid
Nuaim ibn Hammad has documented other narrations about Sayyidah Aisha’s radiya Llahu ‘anha dream which corroborate Abu Muawiyah’s report and do not mention anything of her cursing Sayyidina ‘Amr radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
From the chain of Hushaym ibn Bushayr―from Hussain.
Hushaym ibn Bushayr
From the chain of Hushaym ibn Bushayr―from Mujalid―from al Sha’bi.
These last three narrations contain Mujalid ibn Sa’id.
Mujalid ibn Sa’id
There is another narration in which the curse is ambiguous, with the wording:
لعن الله فلانا
May Allah curse so and so.
Al Bayhaqi says in al Dala’il:
أخبرنا أبو عبد الله الحافظ أخبرنا الحسين بن الحسن بن عامر الكندي بالكوفة من أصل سماعه حدثنا أحمد بن محمد بن صدقة الكاتب قال حدثنا عمر بن عبد الله بن عمر بن محمد بن أبان ابن صالح قال هذا كتاب جدي محمد بن أبان فقرأت فيه حدثنا الحسن ابن الحر قال حدثنا الحكم بن عتيبة و عبد الله بن أبي السفر عن عامر الشعبي عن مسروق قال قالت عائشة فذكر بنحو ما وقع عند الحاكم
Abu ‘Abdullah al Hafiz informed us―Hussain ibn al Hassan ibn ‘Amir al Kindi informed us in Kufah―Ahmed ibn Muhammad ibn Sadaqah al Katib narrated to us saying―(‘Umar ibn) ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar ibn Muhammad ibn Aban ibn Salih narrated to us saying: This is the book of my grandfather Muhammad ibn Aban in which I read―Hassan ibn al Hurr narrated to us saying―al Hakam ibn ‘Utaybah and ‘Abdullah ibn Abi al Safar narrated to us―from ‘Amir al Sha’bi―from Masruq who reported that Aisha said:
And he then narrated a similar narration to the one al Hakim documented.
This isnad is da’if. Muhammad ibn Aban ibn Salih ibn ‘Umair al Ju’fi al Kufi, Abu ‘Umair, is present in the isnad.
Muhammad ibn Aban
Now, if hypothetically the narration in which mention of cursing Sayyidina ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu is accepted as authentic, Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha, despite her lofty status, enormous virtue, and deep knowledge, can err like other humans. Infallibility belongs to none after Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Everyone else’s statements are accepted or rejected besides his salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.
This fitnah comprised of something greater than cursing i.e. killing. At the same time, sometimes a person utters a word which he ought not to have uttered, due to intense anger and fury upon the person being addressed. A man of dignity sometimes speaks something which he chides himself for after returning to his senses. He was constrained to utter that word or blurt out that statement due to anger, or emotion. The hadith of Malik ibn Aws recorded by al Bukhari and Muslim indicates to this. He narrates:
أرسل إلي عمر بن الخطاب فجئته حين تعالى النهار قال فوجدته في بيته جالسا على سرير مفضيا إلى رماله متكئا على وسادة من أدم فقال لي يا مال إنه قد دف أهل أبيات من قومك و قد أمرت فيهم برضخ فخذه فاقسمه بينهم قال قلت لو أمرت بهذا غيري قال خذه يا مال قال فجاء يرفأ فقال هل لك يا أمير المؤمنين في عثمان و عبد الرحمن بن عوف و الزبير و سعد فقال عمر نعم فأذن لهم فدخلوا ثم جاء فقال هل لك في عباس و علي قال نعم فأذن لهما فقال عباس يا أمير المؤمنين اقض بيني و بين هذا الكاذب الآثم الغادر الخائن فقال القوم أجل يا أمير المؤمنين فاقض بينهم و أرحهم … الحديث
‘Umar ibn al Khattab sent word to me so I came to him when the day had advanced. I found him in his house seated on his bare bedstead, reclining on a leather pillow. He told me, “O Mal(ik), some people of your tribe have hastened to me (with a request for help). I have ordered a little money for them. Take it and distribute it among them.”
I said, “Had you ordered someone other than me.”
He instructed, “Take it, O Mal(ik)!”
Just then, Yarfa’ came and submitted, “O Amir al Mu’minin, do you permit ‘Uthman, ‘Abdur Rahman ibn ‘Awf, Zubair, and Sa’d to enter?”
“Yes,” ‘Umar replied. He awarded them permission and they entered.
Yarfa’ then returned and asked, “Do you permit ‘Abbas and ‘Ali to enter.” He replied in the affirmative, awarding them permission.
‘Abbas grumbled, “O Amir al Mu’minin, judge between me and this fake, sinful, deceitful, treacherous man.”
Those present recommended, “Yes, O Amir al Mu’minin, decide between them and grant them comfort from one another.”
Have a look at Sayyidina ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhu as he describes Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu as a fake, sinful, deceitful, and treacherous man. He declares this in the presence of the rightly guided caliphate and those promised Jannat, yet none of them rebukes him for this. They understood it to be the result of Sayyidina ‘Abbas’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu intense fury and anger at Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has supported this meaning and supplicated for the disengagement of every servant from it. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:
أيما رجل من أمتي سببته سبة أو لعنته لعنة في غضبي فإنما أنا من ولد آدم أغضب كما يغضبون و إنما بعثني رحمة للعالمين فاجعلها عليهم صلاة يوم القيامة
Whichever individual of my ummah I swore or cursed in anger―I am only from the progeny of Adam, I become angry just like them. He subhanahu wa ta ‘ala has sent me only as a mercy for the worlds―translate it as mercy upon them on the Day of Qiyamah.
The implication is that swearing, cursing, or its like coming from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is not intended, but only the product of custom. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam feared that some of it might be accepted, so he begged Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala to convert it into mercy, expiation, proximity, purification, and reward. Anyways, this would happen very seldom from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam since he was not obscene nor accustomed to cursing. And Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala knows best.
Sayyidina ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu is a renowned Sahabi. It is not possible except to attribute his statement to his belief that he killed Dhu al Thadiyyah, which in fact was an inaccuracy due to confusion. Man is prone to assumptions and forgetfulness. This does not make him deserving of being cursed or cussed. May Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala forgive her, him, us, and all the Muslims.
Ibn ‘Abdul Barr elucidates in al Istidhkar on the hadith of the Nabi’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam slipup in salah:
و في هذا الحديث بيان أن أحدا لا يسلم من الوهم و النسيان لأنه إذا اعترى ذلك الأنبياء فغيرهم بذلك أحرى
This hadith asserts that none is saved from assumption or forgetfulness. When the Prophets are not free from it, then others are all the more prone to it.
Take for instance Sayyidina Ibn ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma who kept close to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and accompanied him on all his trips for ‘Umrah. When questioned on the amount of ‘Umrahs performed by the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, he answers, “Four, including one in Rajab.” When Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha is informed of this, she comments, “May Allah shower mercy upon Abu ‘Abdur Rahman. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam never performed any ‘Umrah except that he was present, yet he never ever performed ‘Umrah in Rajab.”
Hafiz Ibn Hajar explains:
و في هذا الحديث أن الصحابي الجليل المكثر الشديد الملامزة للنبي صلى الله عليه و سلم قد يخفى عليه بعض أحواله و قد يدخله الوهم و النسيان لكونه غير معصوم
In this report, we have a celebrated Sahabi―prolific in transmission, renowned for keeping close to the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam―being unaware of an aspect of his biography. He is also susceptible to assumption and forgetfulness due to him being fallible.
A human’s intrinsic quality is forgetfulness. In fact, he is the centre of forgetfulness. The first to forget is the first man, our father Sayyidina Adam ‘alayh al Salam. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala states:
وَلَقَدْ عَهِدْنَا إِلىٰ آدَمَ مِنْ قَبْلُ فَنَسِيَ وَلَمْ نَجِدْ لَهُ عَزْمًا
And indeed, We once made a covenant with Adam, but he forgot, and We did not find determination in him.
Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam elucidated:
فجحد آدم فجحدت ذريته و خطئ آدم فخطئت ذريته و نسي فنسيت ذريته
Adam denied, and so did his progeny. Adam erred, and so did his progeny. He forgot, and so did his progeny.
Ibn ‘Abbas says so beautifully:
إنما سمي الإنسان إنسانا لأنه عهد إليه فنسي
Human is only called insan (human) because he was given a covenant and he forgot.
Abu Tamam says:
سميت إنسانا لأنك ناسي
لا تنسين تلك العهود فإنما
Never forget these covenants for,
Man is only called insan (human) because he is forgetful.
The poet says:
و ما القلب إلا أنه يتقلب
و ما سمي الإنسان إلا لنسيه
Man is only named al insan due to his forgetfulness
And the heart is called al qalb because it changes.
Realise that it is our mandatory obligation to keep silent about the conflicts that occurred between the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum and to be pleased with them all. This is due to the fact that Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala selected them for the companionship of the most superior creation and to transmit His Shari’ah. Only a handful of the reports that list their errors are authentic. Moreover, the authentic reports either deal with an ijtihadi matter―the executor is either a mujtahid acting correctly who receives twofold reward or a mujtahid who errs and receives a single reward. The other authentic reports which do not deal with ijtihadi matters are an insignificant amount. We do not claim infallibility for the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum and besides their errors are negligible in comparison to the ocean of their good deeds. We should not forget that they enjoy precedence in good deeds which expiates this insignificant amount.
It is binding upon us to spread the good and conceal the wrong. Islam’s yearning to conceal (the faults) of the general masses is well-known. So are the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum―who sacrificed their wealth and lives to exalt the word of Allah―not most deserving of the same? Definitely, they are most deserving and worthy. Spreading their mistakes is a major cause of corruption. Sufficient corruption is your heart having reservations for those you have been ordered to love and be pleased with. What will your situation be if you doubt the transmitters of this din?
Owing to this, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam erected around them an impenetrable shield so that they dare never ever be attacked, warning:
لا تسبوا أصحابي لا تسبوا أصحابي فوالذي نفسي بيده لو أن أحدكم أنفق مثل أحد ذهبا ما أدرك مد أحدهم و لا نصيفه
Do not revile my companions. Do not speak ill of my companions. By the Being in whose control is my life, if any of you were to spend gold equivalent [in weight] to mount Uhud, you will not reach [the reward] of their mudd, not even half of it.
The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum and the subsequent generations of Tabi’in and scholars enforced this fundamental and stressed on it due to the dangerous consequence of imperfection in din of the one who does not adhere to it.
Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma states:
لا تسبوا أصحاب محمد فإن الله عز و جل قد أمر بالاستغفار لهم وهو يعلم أنهم سيقتتلون
Do not revile the Companions of Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam because Allah―the Mighty and Majestic―commanded that forgiveness be sought on their behalf while He was fully aware that they will soon fight one another.
Abu ‘Ammar al Hamdani ‘Urayb ibn Humaid recalls:
جاء رجل إلى علي فوقع في عائشة فقام عمار فقال اخرج مقبوحا منبوحا والله إنها لزوجة رسول الله في الدنيا و الآخرة
A man came to ‘Ali and began disparaging Aisha in his presence. Hearing this, ‘Ammar stood up and yelled, “Get lost, disgracefully and reprehensibly. By Allah, certainly she is the wife of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in the world and the Hereafter.”
Hassan al Basri was questioned about their war to which they replied:
قتال شهده أصحاب محمد صلى الله عليه و سلم و غبنا و علموا و جهلنا و اجتمعوا فابتعنا و اختلفوا فوقفنا
A war at which the Companions of Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam were present while we were absent, they knew while we were ignorant. When they are united, we follow and when they differ, we refrain from passing a judgment.
Abu Yusuf Yaqub al Fasawi states:
حدثنا سعيد بن عفير حدثني يعقوب عن أبيه أن عبد العزيز بن مروان بعث ابنه عمر بن عبد العزيز إلى المدينة يتأدب بها فكتب إلى صالح ابن كيسان يتعاهده فكان عمر يختلف إلى عبيد الله بن عبد الله يسمع منه العلم فبلغ عبيد الله أن عمر ينتقص علي بن أبي طالب فأتاه عمر فقام يصلي فجلس عبيد الله فلم يبرح حتى سلم من ركعتين ثم أقبل على عمر بن عبد العزيز فقال متى بلغك أن الله سخط على أهل بدر بعد أن رضي عنهم قال فعرف عمر ما أراد فقال معذرة إليك والله لا أعود قال فما سمع عمر بن عبد العزيز بعد ذلك ذاكرا عليا إلا بخير
Sa’id ibn ‘Ufayr narrated to us―Yaqub narrated to me―from his father that ‘Abdul ‘Aziz ibn Marwan sent his son ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdul ‘Aziz to Madinah to receive a fine education. He wrote to Salih ibn Kaysan to take care of him. ‘Umar would frequent the gatherings of ‘Ubaidullah ibn ‘Abdullah to listen to his academic discourses. It reached ‘Ubaidullah that ‘Umar was disparaging ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib. After some time, ‘Umar came to him and stood up to pray. ‘Ubaidullah sat and waited until ‘Umar made salam after two rak’at. ‘Ubaidullah then turned to ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdul ‘Aziz and asked, “When did it reach you that Allah became angry at the participants of Badr after being pleased with them?”
‘Umar realised his implication so he submitted, “I apologise to you. By Allah, I will never commit that mistake again.”
Subsequent to this, ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdul ‘Aziz was only heard speaking favourably of ‘Ali.
تلك دماء كف الله يدي عنها وأنا أكره أن أغمس لساني فيها
That is blood from which Allah protected my hand. I, therefore, dislike immersing my tongue in it.
Al ‘Awwam ibn Hawshab states:
اذكروا محاسن أصحاب محمد صلى الله عليه و سلم تأتلف عليه قلوبكم و لا تذكروا غيره فتحرشوا الناس عليهم
Highlight the distinctions of the Companions of Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, your hearts will agree with it. Do not discuss anything besides this, or else you will sow discord in the hearts of people for them.
Abu Bakr al Marwadhi states:
قيل لأبي عبد الله و نحن بالعسكر و قد جاء بعض رسل الخليفة و هو يعقوب فقال يا أبا عبد الله ما تقول فيما كان من علي و معاوية رحمهما الله فقال أبو عبد الله ما أقول فيها إلا الحسنى رحمهم الله أجمعين
We were in the army when Yaqub, one of the messengers of the khalifah, had arrived and enquired, “O Abu ‘Abdullah, what is your view regarding the dispute between ‘Ali and Muawiyah, may Allah have mercy on them both?”
Abu ‘Abdullah replied, “I only speak positively about it. May Allah shower mercy on them all.”
Abu Yaqub ibn al ‘Abbas reports:
كنا عند أبي عبد الله سنة سبع و عشرين أنا و أبو جعفر بن إبراهيم فقال له أبو جعفر أليس نترحم على أصحاب رسول الله كلهم معاوية و عمرو بن العاص و علي و أبي موسى الأشعري و المغيرة قال نعم كلهم وصفهم الله في كتابه فقال سِيمَاهُمْ فِيْ وُجُوْهِهِم مِّنْ أَثَرِ السُّجُوْدِ
Abu Jafar ibn Ibrahim and I were in the company of Abu ‘Abdullah in the year 27 A.H. Abu Jafar asked him, “Do we not seek mercy for all the Companions of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam including Muawiyah, ‘Amr ibn al ‘As, ‘Ali, Abu Musa al Ash’ari, and Mughirah?”
Abu Zur’ah announces:
إذا رأيت الرجل ينتقص أحدا من أصحاب رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم فاعلم أنه زنديق و ذلك أن الرسول صلى الله عليه و سلم عندنا حق و القرآن حق و إنما أدى إلينا هذا القرآن و السنن أصحاب رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم و إنما يريدون أن يجرحوا شهودنا ليبطلوا الكتاب و السنة و الجرح بهم أولى و هم زنادقة
When you see a man disparaging any of the Companions of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, then realise he is a heretic. This is because Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is true according to us and the Qur’an is true. Only and only the Companions of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam transmitted the Qur’an and Sunnah practices to us. They (those who disparage the Sahabah) only seek to declare our witnesses unreliable so that they may abolish the Book and Sunnah. Declaring them (those who disparage the Sahabah) unreliable is more befitting and they are heretics.
Abu Sulaiman al Khattabi affirms:
أما ما شجر بين الصحابة من الأمور و حدث في زمانهم من اختلاف الآراء فإنه باب كلما قل التسرع فيه و البحث عنه كان أولى بنا و أسلم لنا و مما يجب علينا أن نعتقد في أمرهم أنهم كانوا أئمة علماء قد اجتهدوا في طلب الحق و تحروا جهته و توخوا قصده فالمصيب منهم مأجور و المخطئ معذور وقد تعلق كل منهم بحجة و فرع إلى عذر و المقايسة عليهم و المباحثة عنهم اقتحام فيما لا يعنينا والله تعالى يغفر لنا و لهم برحمته
With regards to the disagreements of the Sahabah and the diverse views that developed in their era, that is a door; the less we hasten to it and discuss it, the more befitting and safer for us. What is necessary for us to believe about them is that they were leaders and scholars. They exercised ijtihad to seek the truth, investigated it thoroughly, and aimed for its target. The one who reached the correct conclusion is rewarded while the one mistaken is excused. Each of them clasped on to a proof and took refuge in a justification. Making comparisons between them and discussing them is embarking boldly into a terrain that does not concern us. May Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala forgive us and them through His mercy.
Al Baqillani says:
و يجب أن يعلم أن خير الأمة أصحاب رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم و أفضل الصحابة العشرة الخلفاء الأربعة رضي الله عن الجميع و أرضاهم و نقر بفضل أهل بيت رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم و كذلك نعترف بفضل أزواجه صلى الله عليه و سلم و أنهن أمهات المؤمنين كما وصفهن الله تعالى و رسوله و نقول في الجميع خيرا … و يجب الكف عن ذكر ما شجر بينهم و السكوت عنه … و روي عن ابن عباس رضي الله عنهما أنه قيل له ما تقول فيما شجر بين الصدر الأول فقال أقول كما قال الله تعالى رَبَّنَا اغْفِرْ لَنَا وَلِإِخْوَانِنَا الَّذِيْنَ سَبَقُوْنَا بِالْإِيْمَانِ وَلَا تَجْعَلْ فِيْ قُلُوْبِنَا غِلًّا لِّلَّذِيْنَ آمَنُوْا و سئل عن ذلك جعفر بن محمد الصادق عليه السلام فقال أقول ما قال الله عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ رَبِّيْ فِيْ كِتَابٍ لَّا يَضِلُّ رَبِّيْ وَلَا يَنْسىٰ
It is compulsory to know that the cream of the ummah are the Companions of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. The most superior of the ten Sahabah are the four Khalifas. May Allah be pleased with them all and make them happy. We affirm the excellence of the Ahlul Bayt of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. We similarly acknowledge the virtue of His wives radiya Llahu ‘anhunna. They are the Mothers of the Believers just as Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala and His Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam described them. We speak favourably of them all.
It is obligatory not to discuss their disagreements and to remain silent about it.
It is reported that Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma was asked, “What do you say about the disputes in the first era?”
He replied, “I declare just as Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala declared: Our Lord! Forgive us and our fellow brothers who preceded us in faith, and do not allow bitterness into our hearts towards those who believe.
Jafar al Sadiq ibn Muhammad was asked the same question to which he replied, “I declare what Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala declared: The knowledge thereof is with my Rabb in a record. My Rabb neither errs not forgets.”
Al Qurtubi asserts:
و قد تعبدنا بالكف عما شجر بينهم و ألا نذكرهم إلا بأحسن الذكر لحرمة الصحبة و لنهي النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم عن سبهم و أن الله غفر لهم و أخبر بالرضا عنهم هذا مع ما قد ورد من الأخبار من طرق مختلفة عن النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم أن طلحة شهيد يمشي على وجه الأرض فلو كان ما خرج إليه من الحرب عصيانا لم يكن بالقتل فيه شهيدا و كذلك لو كان ما خرج إليه خطأ في التأويل و تقصيرا في الواجب عليه لأن الشهادة لا تكون إلا بقتل في طاعة فوجب حمل أمرهم على ما بيناه و مما يدل على ذلك ما قد صح و انتشر من أخبار علي بأن قاتل الزبير في النار قال ابن فورك و من أصحابنا من قال إن سبيل ما جرت بين الصحابة من المنازعات كسبيل ما جرى بين أخوة يوسف مع يوسف ثم إنهم لم يخرجوا بذلك عن حد الولاية و النبوة فكذلك الأمر فيما جرى بين الصحابة
We have been commanded as a form of worship to keep silent with regards to their disputes and not to mention them except in glowing terms, due to the honour of companionship and Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prohibition from reviling them and owing to Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala forgiving them and notifying of being pleased with them. All of this coupled with the narrations from various chains from the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that Talhah is a martyr walking on the face of the earth. Had his departure for the war been disobedience, he would not have been a martyr by being killed therein. Similar would be the case if his departure had been a mistake in interpretation and a shortcoming in his mandatory duty. This is because martyrdom cannot be attained except by being killed in obedience. Hence, it is necessary to attribute their matter to what we have explained. What indicates to this is the authentic and famous reports of ‘Ali that the killer of Zubair is in Hell. Ibn Furak says: Among our scholars are those who say, “The path of disputes between the Sahabah is like the path between the brothers of Yusuf with Yusuf. They, by this, did not exit the border of leadership and nubuwwah. Similar is the matter between the Sahabah.
Al Nawawi explains:
واعلم أن الدماء التي جرت بين الصحابة رضي الله عنهم ليست بداخلة في هذا الوعيد و مذهب أهل السنة و الحق إحسان الظن بهم و الإمساك عما شجر بينهم و تأويل قتالهم و أنهم مجتهدون متأولون لم يقصدوا معصية و لا محض الدنيا بل اعتقد كل فريق أنه المحق و مخالفه باغ فوجب عليه قتاله ليرجع إلى أمر الله و كان بعضهم مصيبا و بعضهم مخطئا معذورا في الخطأ لأنه لاجتهاد و المجتهد إذا أخطأ لا إثم عليه و كان علي رضي الله عنه هو المحق المصيب في تلك الحروب هذا مذهب أهل السنة و كانت القضايا مشتبهة حتى أن جماعة من الصحابة تحيروا فيها فاعتزلوا الطائفتين و لم يقاتلوا و لم يتيقنوا الصواب ثم تأخروا عن مساعدته
Know that the wars that occurred between the Sahabah are not included in this warning. The stance of the Ahlus Sunnah and those of truth is to entertain good thoughts about them, withhold from their disagreements, provide suitable interpretation to their clashes, and to acknowledge that they are mujtahids who exercised ijtihad without intending disobedience or hankering after the world. Instead, each faction believed himself to be on the truth and his opposition as rebels, hence fighting the opposition was binding in order for him to return to the decree of Allah. Some of them acted correctly while some of them erred and are excused for their error since it was on the basis of ijtihad. When a mujtahid errs, there is no sin upon him. ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu was upon the truth and acted correctly in those wars. This is the stance of the Ahlus Sunnah. The matters were obscure to the extent that a group of Sahabah pondered deeply about it and detached from both factions without participating in the fighting, as they were not convinced of what was right, thus desisted from assisting [any group].
Ibn Taymiyyah states:
ما ينقل عن الصحابة من المثالب فهو نوعان أحدهما ما هو كذب إما كذب كله و إما محرف قد دخله من الزيادة و النقصان ما يخرجه إلى الذم و الطعن و أكثر المنقول من المطاعن الصريحة هو من هذا الباب يرويها الكذابون المعروفون بالكذب مثل أبي مخنف لوط بن يحيى و مثل هشام بن محمد ابن السائب الكلبي و أمثالهما من الكذابين النوع الثاني ما هو صدق و أكثر هذه الأمور لهم فيها معاذير تخرجها عن أن تكون ذنوبا و تجعلها من موارد الاجتهاد التي إن أصاب المجتهد فيها فله أجران و إن أخطأ فله أجر و عامة المنقول الثابت عن الخلفاء الراشدين من هذا الباب و ما قدر من هذه الأمور ذنبا محققا فإن ذلك لا يقدح فيما علم من فضائلهم و سوابقهم و كونهم من أهل الجنة لأن الذنب المحقق يرتفع عقابه في الآخرة بأسباب متعددة
The shortcomings of the Sahabah that are reported are of two types. One type is pure falsehood. Either it is a complete lie or it is contaminated with additions or subtractions plunging it into a form of censure and disparagement. The majority of clear-cut blemishes that are reported are of this type, reported by liars notorious for falsehood like Abu Mikhnaf Lut ibn Yahya, Hisham ibn Muhammad ibn al Sa’ib al Kalbi, and their like of fabricators.
The second type is true. Majority of these are such matters for which they have justifiable excuses which remove them from being sins and enter them into the domain of ijtihad wherein if the mujtahid is correct, he receives a twofold reward and if he errs, he receives a single reward. The general established reports about the Rightly Guided Khalifas are of this type. Those matters that are decreed as proper sins, cannot censure their renowned virtues, precedences, and them being from the inhabitants of Jannat, for the punishment of a proper sin is waived in the Hereafter due to a host of reasons.
He also declares:
و يمسكون عما شجر بين الصحابة و يقولون إن هذه الآثار المروية في مساويهم منها ما هو كذب و منها ما قد زيد فيه و نقص و غير عن وجهه و الصحيح منه هم فيه معذورون إما مجتهدون مصيبون و إما مجتهدون مخطئون و هم مع ذلك لا يعتقدون أن كل واحد من الصحابة معصوم عن كبائر الإثم و صغائره بل تجوز عليهم الذنوب في الجملة و لهم من السوابق و الفضائل ما يوجب مغفرة ما يصدر منهم إن صدر حتى إنه يغفر لهم من السيئات ما لا يغفر لمن بعدهم لأن لهم من الحسنات التي تمحو السيئات ما ليس لمن بعدهم و قد ثبت بقول رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم إنهم خير القرون و إن المد من أحدهم إذا تصدق به كان أفضل من جبل أحد ذهبا ممن بعدهم
And they (the Ahlus Sunnah) withhold from speaking about the disagreements of the Sahabah. They declare: These reports narrated about their flaws; some are lies while others have been added to or subtracted from and changed from their original. With regards to the authentic reports, they (the Sahabah) are excused for they are either mujtahids that acted correctly or mujtahids that erred. Coupled with this, they (the Ahlus Sunnah) do not believe that all the Sahabah are infallible to major and minor sins. Rather, they are susceptible to sin. At the same time, they enjoy precedence and excellent virtues which mandate the forgiveness of their errors, if any. In fact, such evil deeds of theirs are pardoned which are not pardoned for those after them since they have performed those marvellous good deeds which erase evil deeds, good deeds not performed by others. It is established on the strength of Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement that they are the best generation and that a mudd which one of them donates in charity is far superior to Mount Uhud of gold donated by those after them.
ما علم بالكتاب و السنة و النقل المتواتر من محاسن الصحابة و فضائلهم لا يجوز أن يدفع بنقول بعضها منقطع و بعضها محرف و بعضها لا يقدح فيما علم فإن اليقين لا يزول بالشك و نحن قد تيقنا ما دل عليه الكتاب و السنة و إجماع السلف قبلنا و ما يصدق ذلك من المنقولات المتواترة من أدلة العقل من أن الصحابة رضي الله عنهم أفضل الخلق بعد الأنبياء فلا يقدح في هذا أمور مشكوك فيها فكيف إذا علم بطلانها
The good qualities and excellences of the Sahabah that are authenticated in the Qur’an, Sunnah, and mutawatir narrations cannot be dumped by a handful of reports, some of which are munqati’, others adulterated, and others not condemnatory as far as knowledge is concerned. This is owing to the principle that certainty does not disappear due to doubt. We are convinced by the declarations of the Qur’an, the Sunnah, the consensus of the pious predecessors before us, and those mutawatir narrations and intellectual evidences which support that the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum were the cream of creation after the Prophets. Matters which are doubtful cannot overshadow these, so what about when their falsehood is recognised?
The statements of the Salaf (learned pious predecessors) and scholars of the ummah on this topic are innumerable. I have sufficed by quoting few as a sample to elucidate on the stance of the noble predecessors of the ummah. Otherwise, the matter is unanimously agreed upon and does not have scope for ijtihad. Ibn Hajar has recorded consensus upon this. Ibn Hajar declares:
و اتفق أهل السنة على وجوب منع الطعن على أحد من الصحابة بسبب ما وقع لهم من ذلك و لو عرف المحق منهم لأنهم لم يقاتلوا في تلك الحروب إلا عن اجتهاد و قد عفا الله تعالى عن المخطئ في الاجتهاد بل ثبت أنه يؤجر أجرا واحدا و أن المصيب يؤجر أجرين
The Ahlus Sunnah are unanimous on the compulsion of prohibiting criticism against any of the Sahabah due to what happened in this regard, although the accurate entity is recognised. This is because they did not fight in those wars except on the basis of ijtihad and Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala has pardoned the one who errs in ijtihad. In fact, it is established that he is awarded one reward while the accurate one is awarded two rewards.
These statements quoted from the Salaf on this topic―if they indicate anything―indicate the seriousness of this matter. The one who steps in this domain, steps in at the peril of his own life. Whoever desires safety should adopt the stance of the pious predecessors of the Ummah: protecting the tongue from criticising them, withholding his tongue from discussing the disagreements between them, and not delving into these issues except with a praiseworthy objective like gaining deep understanding of din if any fiqhi ruling is attached to it, defending them, or exposing the faulty narrations which describe them with characteristics not befitting for the best of creation after the Nabi of mankind (may the choicest salutations, peace, and greetings be upon him).
O benevolent reader! You are now aware of the stance of the pious predecessors concerning this fitnah, i.e. preserving the tongue from disparaging them, not discussing their disagreements, loving them all, and being pleased with them all. Hold firmly to it, for it is the straight path and the sound method. Whoever treads another path, treads a ruined path. If he is compassionate, then his own soul is most deserving of the same, before being forced to regret at a juncture when there will be no time for regret.
 Sahih Tarikh al Tabari, footnotes of the muhaqqiq (researcher), vol. 3 pg. 357, 358.
 Ibn Abi al Dunya: Kitab al ‘Iyal, vol. 1 pg. 435, through his chain to al Sha’bi who says:
كانت قريش تحب عثمان حتى إن المرأة كانت ترقص ابنها فتقول أحبك و الرحمن حب قريش عثمان
The Quraysh loved ‘Uthman so intensely that a woman would sing for her son, “By Rahman, I love you, the way Quraysh love ‘Uthman.”
 Tarikh al Tabari, vol. 4 pg. 251.
 Briefly. For more information, study Sulaiman al ‘Awdah: Kitab ‘Abdullah ibn Saba’ wa Atharuhu fi Ahdath al Fitnah fi Sadr al Islam, Master of Arts treatise, year 1402, from the University of Imam Muhammad ibn Sa’ud al Islamiyyah, Riyadh.
 Surah al Qasas: 85.
 Muhammad Amhazun: Tahqiq Mawaqif al Sahabah fi al Fitnah, vol. 1 pg. 325 – 363, with brevity and adaptation.
 Ibn ‘Abdul Barr: al Isti’ab, vol. 1 pg. 320.
 Al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, vol. 10 pg. 282, with variation.
 Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 24566. Al Albani classified it sahih in Sahih al Jami’, Hadith: 7947.
 Tarikh Caliphate ibn Khayyat, pg. 39.
 Al ‘Awasim min al Qawasim, pg. 132, 133.
 Sahih al Bukhari, book on virtues, chapter on the Nabi’s statement: had I taken a friend, vol. 3 pg. 1350; Sahih Muslim, book on the virtues of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, chapter on the virtues of ‘Uthman ibn ‘Affan radiya Llahu ‘anhu, Hadith: 2403.
 Minhaj al Sunnah, vol. 6 pg. 286.
 Al Fasl fi al Milal wa al Ahwa’ wa al Nihal, vol. 4 pg. 153.
 Tarikh al Tabari, vol. 4 pg. 437.
 Majmu’ al Fatawa, vol. 27 pg. 377.
 Ibn Shabbah: Tarikh al Madinah al Munawwarah, vol. 4 pg. 1267.
 Tarikh al Tabari, vol. 4 pg. 506, 507, with brevity.
 Like Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqas, Muhammad ibn Maslamah, Zaid ibn Thabit, Abu Musa al Ash’ari, and Ibn ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhum. Tahqiq Mawaqif al Sahabah fi al Fitnah, vol. 2 pg. 167.
 Sahih al Bukhari, book on Salah, chapter on mutual assistance in building a Masjid, Hadith: 436.
 It has passed in the section: the background of the fitnah, that some who harboured rancour for Islam outwardly embraced Islam and concealed their old beliefs, in an attempt to demolish the Islamic State.
 Sahih al Bukhari, book on reconciliation, chapter on the Nabi’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement about Hassan ibn ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhuma, Hadith: 2557, the hadith of Sayyidina Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
 Sahih Muslim, book on zakat, chapter on describing the Khawarij and their characteristics, Hadith: 1064, the hadith of Sayyidina Abu Sa’id al Khudri radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Al Nawawi states, “One narration has the wording: the closer of the two factions to the truth. Another narration reads:
تكون أمتي فرقتين فتخرج من بينهما مارقة تلي قتلهم أولاهما بالحق
My ummah will be divided into two factions. Another group will secede from them and will be killed by the faction closer to the truth.
These narrations are emphatic that Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu was correct and upon the truth and that the other faction, the companions of Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, were nonconformists and acting on ijtihad. It is also categorical that both factions are believers. Due to fighting, they are not bereft of iman nor are they transgressors. This is our stance and the stance of those who agree with us. (Sharh Muslim, vol. 7 pg. 167)
 Al Tarikh, vol. 3 pg. 115 – 116.
 Al Dhahabi: Mizan al I’tidal, vol. 3 pg. 420.
 Ibn Hajar: Lisan al Mizan, vol. 4 pg. 492.
 Al Jarh wa al Ta’dil, vol. 5 pg. 348.
 Al Jarh wa al Ta’dil, vol. 8 pg. 206; Lisan al Mizan, vol. 5 pg. 3.
 Musnad Abi Hanifah, pg. 83.
 Musannaf ‘Abdur Razzaq, vol. 3 pg. 107; Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, vol. 2 pg. 103; al Tabarani: al Mujam al Awsat, vol. 7 pg. 274.
 Sahih al Bukhari, book on etiquette, chapter on whoever excommunicates his brother without any interpretation, it is as he said, Hadith: 5754; Sahih Muslim, book on iman, chapter on the gravity of the impermissibility of a person committing suicide and the one who kills himself with something will be punished with the same in the Fire and that only a believing soul will enter Jannat, Hadith: 110. The wording is al Bukhari’s.
 Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 3839; Jami’ al Tirmidhi, chapter on piety and maintaining ties from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, the chapter on the reports on cursing, Hadith: 1977. The wording is al Tirmidhi’s. al Albani classified it sahih in al Sahihah, vol. 1 pg. 319.
 Sahih Muslim, book on kindness, maintaining ties, and etiquette, chapter on the impermissibility of cursing animals etc., Hadith: 2598.
 Tarikh Dimashq, vol. 25 pg. 115; Usd al Ghabah, vol. 2 pg. 45; Tarikh al Islam, vol. 2 pg. 165; al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, vol. 10 pg. 476.
 Al Sahabah wa Makanatuhum ‘ind al Muslimin, pg. 35 with variation; al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, vol. 10 pg. 334; Imam Ahmed: Fada’il al Sahabah, vol. 2 pg. 747; Ibn Sa’d: al Tabaqat al Kubra, vol. 3 pg. 113.
 Ibn Faris explains: “Sin, dal, and nun are one basis for a specific item. It is said: al sadanah means covering; sadanat al bayt: the curtains of the house. They say: al sadan means veil. (Mujam Maqayis al Lughah, vol. 3 pg. 150)
 Al Akhbar al Tiwal, vol. 1 pg. 242.
 Al Majlisi: Bihar al Anwar, vol. 33 pg. 332, Murtada al ‘Askari: Ahadith Umm al Mu’minin Aisha, vol. 1 pg. 364.
 Al Hakim: al Mustadrak, vol. 4 pg. 14. Al Hakim comments, “This hadith is sahih, on the standard of al Bukhari and Muslim, yet they have not recorded it.”
 Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, vol. 11 pg. 77, Hadith: 31153.
 Al Mizzi: Tahdhib al Kamal, vol. 25 pg. 128 – 131.
 Fath al Bari, vol. 12 pg. 286.
 Al Taqrib, Biography: 916.
 Nuaim ibn Hammad: Kitab al Fitan, Hadith: 181.
 Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, vol. 11 pg. 72, Hadith: 31140.
 Al Ishraf fi Manazil al Ashraf, vol. 1 pg. 273 – 274.
 Al Taqrib, Biography: 6478.
 Tahdhib al Kamal, vol. 27 pg. 221 – 224.
 Al Mustadrak, vol. 1 pg. 700.
 Ibn Khallikan: Wafayat al A’yan, vol. 3 pg. 16; Tahdhib al Kamal, vol. 14 pg. 28.
 It appears like this in al Dala’il, Dar al Kutub al ‘Ilmiyyah print. I have not found any biography of his. Probably, it is an error and the correct name is ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar, the grandson of Muhammad ibn Aban who is truthful. (al Taqrib, Biography: 3493)
 Al Dala’il, vol. 6 pg. 434 – 435.
 Ibn Hibban: al Majruhin, vol. 2 pg. 260; Ibn al Jawzi: al Du’afa’ wa al Matrukin, vol. 3 pg. 37; Ibn Hajar: Ta’jil al Manfa’ah, vol. 2 pg. 165.
 Sahih al Bukhari, book on the share of the fifth, Hadith: 2927; Sahih Muslim, book on jihad and expeditions, chapter on the ruling of Fay’, Hadith: 1757. The wording is Muslim’s.
 Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 23706; Sunan Abi Dawood, book on Sunnah, chapter on the impermissibility of swearing the Sahabah of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, Hadith: 4659. The wording is Abu Dawood’s. al Albani classified it sahih in al Sahihah, vol. 4 pg. 257.
 Muhammad Kamal: Dar’ al Intiqas, pg. 90 – 93, with brevity.
 Al Abadi: ‘Awn al Ma’bud, vol. 12 pg. 271.
 Ibn ‘Abdul Barr: al Istidhkar, vol. 1 pg. 521.
 Sahih al Bukhari, book on Hajj, chapter on the amount of ‘Umrahs the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam performed, Hadith: 1685; Sahih Muslim, book on Hajj, chapter on the number of the Nabi’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam ‘Umrahs and their time, Hadith: 1255. The wording is al Bukhari’s.
 Al Fath, vol. 3 pg. 602.
 Surah Taha: 115.
 Jami’ al Tirmidhi, chapters on the tafsir of the Qur’an from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, chapter on Surah al A’raf, Hadith: 3076; al Mustadrak, vol. 1 pg. 123, Hadith: 214. The wording is al Tirmidhi’s. Al Albani classified it sahih in Sahih al Jami’, Hadith: 9339.
 Al Tabarani: al Mujam al Saghir, vol. 2 pg. 140, Hadith: 925; Ibn Mandah: al Tawhid, vol. 1 pg. 94, Hadith: 72; al Bayhaqi: al Asma’ wa al Sifat, vol. 2 pg. 357, Hadith: 786. The wording is al Tabarani’s.
 Al Nuwayri: Nihayat al Arab fi Funun al Adab, vol. 2 pg. 11. Al Nuwayri discusses the diversity of views of the scholars in relation to why man is called insan. Is it from al uns (familiarity), the opposite of al wahshah (strangeness); al naws (dangling), the opposite of al sukun (calmness, peace); al inas (sociability), the meaning of al ibsar (discern); or al nisyan (forgetfulness), the opposite of al dhikr (remembrance). The view of the Kufiyyin has been preferred, that it is derived from al nisyan (forgetfulness).
 Al Zabidi: Taj al ‘Urus, vol. 1 pg. 124.
 Sahih al Bukhari, book on virtues, chapter on Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement: had I taken a bosom friend, Hadith: 3470; Sahih Muslim, book on the virtues of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, chapter on the impermissibility of swearing the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, Hadith: 2540. The wording is Muslim’s.
 Ahmed: Fada’il al Sahabah, vol. 1 pg. 59; al Ajurri: al Shari’ah, Hadith: 1979.
 Ahmed: Fada’il al Sahabah, vol. 2 pg. 870.
 Al Qurtubi: al Jami’ li Ahkam al Qur’an, vol. 16 pg. 321.
 Al Ma’rifah wa al Tarikh, vol. 1 pg. 315.
 Ibn Sa’d: al Tabaqat al Kubra, vol. 5 pg. 394; Hilyat al Auliya’, vol. 9 pg. 114. The wording is Ibn Sa’d’s.
 Al Khallal: al Sunnah, Hadith: 829; al Ajurri: al Shari’ah, Hadith: 1910; Ibn ‘Abdul Barr: Jami’ Bayan al ‘Ilm wa Fadlihi, Hadith: 1136.
 Al Sunnah, vol. 2 pg. 460.
 Surah al Fath: 29.
 Al Sunnah, vol. 2 pg. 476.
 Al Khatib al Baghdadi: al Kifayah fi ‘Ilm al Riwayah, vol. 1 pg. 49.
 Al Khattabi: al ‘Azlah, Hadith: 23.
 Surah al Hashr: 10.
 Surah Taha: 52.
 Abu Bakr al Baqillani: al Insaf fima Yajibu I’tiqaduhu, pg. 65.
 Al Jami’ li Ahkam al Qur’an, vol. 16 pg. 321.
 Sharh al Nawawi, vol. 18 pg. 11.
 Minhaj al Sunnah al Nabawiyyah, vol. 5 pg. 43.
 Matan al ‘Aqidah al Wasitiyyah, vol. 1 pg. 13; Majmu’ al Fatawa, vol. 3 pg. 155.
 Minhaj al Sunnah al Nabawiyyah, vol. 6 pg. 195.
 Fath al Bari, vol. 13 pg. 34.