The readers are aware that we have proven our belief from the Qur’an and Sunnah in a way that leaves no doubts regarding it. Now, we wish to present twelve quotations from Shia sources as the final straw. These quotations encourage holding onto the Qur’an and Sunnah. They also state that din is to be understood, only through the Qur’an and Sunnah, and they alone should be the yardsticks when accepting or rejecting anything. Specific instructions have been issued to uphold these two lanterns. Here again, the Ahlul Bayt and ‘itrah have not been mentioned along with the Qur’an and Sunnah. This clearly proves that in Islam, nothing is equal to the Qur’an and Sunnah and nothing deserves equal importance. There is no third independent source in Islam. Neither do the Ahlul Bayt share the position of authority with the Qur’an and Sunnah, nor are they an authority in any sense.
Below, we present a few references from the books of the Ithna ‘Ashariyyah. These are not the sayings of their ‘ulamaʼ and Mujtahidin, but rather the sayings of their ‘infallible’ Imams. The chains of transmission of these Imams cannot be doubted (by the Shia). These quotations appear in those books considered most authentic and accepted by them such as, Nahj al Balaghah, Usul al Kafi, al Ihtijaj of al Tabarsi etc.
ولكنكم علينا العمل بكتاب الله تعالى و سيرة رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم والقيام بحقه والنعش لسنته
It is necessary for us to hold onto the Book of Allah and the lifestyle of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, fulfilling the rights thereof and raising it.
وقال عليه السلام من اخذ دينه من كتاب الله و سنة نبيه ذالت الجبال قبل ان يزول ومن اخذ دينه من افواه الرجال روته الرجال
‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “Whoever takes his din from the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Nabi, will not move from his din before the mountains move, and whoever takes his din from the mouths of men, will be fooled by men.”
Both of the above quotations emphasise the importance of practising upon the Qur’an and Sunnah. They explain that din can only be followed by adhering to them. There was no mention of a third source for din. If there was a third source, it would have definitely been mentioned.
قال جعفر الصادق عليه السلام كل شيئ مردود الى الكتاب و السنة
فالرد الى الله الاخذ بمحكم كتابه والرد الى الرسول الاخذ بسنته الجامعة غير المفترقة
Referring to Allah means following the unambiguous verses of His Book, and referring to the Messenger means holding onto his Sunnah which is All Encompassing.
و من كلام له عليه السلام فى التحكيم …قال الله سبحانه فان تنازعتم فى شيئ فرده الى الله ان يحكم بكتابه و رده الى الرسول ان ناخذ لسنته
From his speeches regarding arbitration …. “Allah who is beyond all deficiencies said, ‘If you dispute regarding any matter, then refer it to Allah and the Rasul.’ Referring to Allah means passing verdict from His Book, and referring to the Messenger means holding onto his Sunnah.”
The summary of the above three quotations is that if any dispute takes place, then the instruction of the Imams is to refer it to the Qur’an and Sunnah, as explained in the verse of the Qur’an. The Imams have advised to do that which the Qur’an had stated. Therefore, both, the Qur’an as well as the Imams have given the instruction that if any difference should come about; refer to the Qur’an and the Sunnah. The Qur’an and the Sunnah alone contain the solutions to all differences. No third item should be referred to.
فان كان الخبران عنكما مشهورين قد رواهما الثقات عنكم قال ينظر فما وافق حكمه حكم الكتاب والسنة و خالف العامة فيؤخذ به و يترك ما خالف حكمه حكم الكتاب والسنة ووافق العامة
One of the ‘sincere’ students of Imam Jafar al Sadiq asked him about accepting two contradictory narrations, “If both narrations are famously attributed to you (the Ahlul Bayt), and both of them are narrated by reliable narrators (then which one should we accept)?” He replied, “They will be studied, that which is compliant to the Qur’an and Sunnah and opposes the general view, will be taken, whereas that which contradicts the Qur’an and Sunnah and complies with the general view will be rejected.” 
فاذا اتاكم الحديث فاعرضوه على كتاب الله عز و جل و سنتى فما وافق كتاب الله و سنتى فخذوا به وما خالف كتاب الله و سنتى فلا تءخذوا به
Imam Muhammad al Baqir narrates the sermon that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam delivered at Hajjat al Wada’. The following statement appears in it as well:
If any hadith reaches you, compare it to the Book of Allah—the Majestic and Glorified—and my Sunnah. That which complies with the Qur’an and Sunnah will be taken, whereas that which contradicts the Qur’an and Sunnah will be rejected.
فاتقوا الله ولا تقبلوا عنا ما خالف قول ربنا تعالى و سنة نبينا محمد صلى الله عليه و سلم
عن هشام بن الحكم انه سمع ابا عبد الله يقول لا تقبلوا عنا حديثا لا يوافق القران والسنة
عن ابن عمير عن بعض اصحابه قال سمعت ابا عبدالله عليه السلام يقول من خالف كتاب الله و سنة محمد صلى الله عليه و سلم فقد كفر
Ibn ‘Umair—from one of the companions—I heard Abu ‘Abdullah rahimahu Llah saying, “Whoever opposes the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Nabi is a kafir.”
The summary of the above five narrations is that the yardstick to measure the truth of any of the narrations from the Imams is the Qur’an and Sunnah, nothing else. If the narration is in harmony with the Qur’an and Sunnah, then it should be accepted and it would be appropriate to hold onto it. Once again, the Qur’an and Sunnah have been declared the only two authorities by means of which everything should be judged. If they conform, they will be accepted, or else they will be rejected. There is no mention of a third authority. The Ahlul Bayt and ‘itrah have not been included as yardsticks to measure the authenticity of narrations or whether they are worthy of acceptance or not. Therefore, it cannot be possible that they deserve the same type of obedience and adherence like the Qur’an and Sunnah.
ومن كلام له عليه السلام قبل موته…واما وصيتى فانه لا تشركوا به شيئا و محمد صلى الله عليه و اله فلا تضيعوا سنته اقىموا هذين العمودين واوقدوا هذين المصباحين و خلاكم ذم ما لم تشردوا
And from amongst his sayings before he passed away, “… As for my bequest, do not associate partners with Allah and do not destroy the Sunnah of Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Keep up these two pillars and keep these two lanterns burning. You will not be blameworthy as long as you do not separate.”
وصيتى لكم ان لا تشركوا بالله شيئا و محمد صلى الله عليه و اله فلا تضيعوا سنته و خلاكم ذمكم
My bequest to you is do not associate partners with Allah and do not destroy the Sunnah of Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. You will not be blameworthy.
The reader should take note, that these were last few words of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu shortly before departing from this temporary abode. These are among the statements that were said in those blessed moments. He exhorts us to uphold the two pillars of Islam (the Qur’an and the Sunnah) and not to let their flames be extinguished. He also commands that groups and parties should not be formed in the ummah.
A point that is worthy of noting at this juncture is that the infallible Imams are only advising the ummah to hold onto the Qur’an and Sunnah in their final moments. They did not ask anyone to follow the Ahlul Bayt and ‘itrah, nor did they say that they are authorities in Islam. Thus we learn that the Ahlul Bayt do not occupy a similar rank to the Qur’an and Sunnah in Islam. If they did have that position, then it simply does not make sense for them to be left out when the Imams offered their final advice. Secondly, we learn that the concept of Imamah is not a fundamental belief in Islam, as this would have been mentioned in the final advice, if it was a fundamental belief. Thirdly, we understand that separating from the rest of the ummah and forming different groups is in stark contrast to the final bequest of the Imams.
May Allah grant every Muslim the good fortune of practising upon the Qur’an and Sunnah and replace our disunity with unity.
صلى الله تعالى على خير خلقه محمد واله و ازواجه و بناته واصحابه و اهل بيته اجمعين
 Nahj al Balaghah vol. 1 pg. 317 from the lectures of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu when the army of Jamal proceeded towards Basrah.
 Al Safi Sharh Usul al Kafi
 Usul al Kafi pg.39 – Chapter of Holding onto the Sunnah.
 Nahj al Balaghah vol. 2 pg. 24 (Part of a lengthy pact written by ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu).
 Nahj al Balaghah vol. 1 pg. 240
 Usul al Kafi pg.39 – Chapter of contradictory ahadith
 Ihtijaj of al Tabarsi pg. 229 – The sermon of Hajjat al Wada’
 Rijal al Kashshi pg.146 – biography of Mughirah ibn Sa’id.
 Tanqih al Maqal of al Mamaqani vol. 1 pg. 174 and vol. 3 pg. 236
 Usul al Kafi pg. 39-40 – Chapter of Holding onto the Sunnah.
 Nahj al Balaghah vol.1 pg.268
 Nahj al Balaghah vol. 22 pg. 21 – From amongst his sayings before he passed away in the form a bequest, after Ibn Muljim struck him.