Saqifah Bani Sa’idah – NEW UPLOAD!!!

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Saqifah Bani Sa’idah

 

Allegation

The Shia claim [Quote], “Abu Bakr and ‘Umar conspired to steal the Caliphate from Imam ‘Ali ‘alayh al Salam. After Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death, these two fools rushed to Saqifah in order to quickly bring Abu Bakr to power in a coup détat against the Ahlul Bayt. Meanwhile, Imam ‘Ali ‘alayh al Salam was unable to attend the meeting in Saqifah because he was too busy attending the funeral of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Yet, Abu Bakr and ‘Umar did not even have the decency to attend Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam funeral and instead were so greedy that they used that time to declare Abu Bakr the Khalifah.

How can you follow such people who are so greedy and power hungry that they did not even attend the funeral of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and instead used that time to aggrandize themselves?”

 

Answer

The matter was not at all as the Shia claim. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma did not at all intend to steal the Caliphate, nor did they miss Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam funeral. Let us give a detailed account of the sequence of events that exonerate them from all blame.

 

Grief over Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Death

Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death sent shockwaves of grief throughout the Muslim Ummah.

The tragic news (of Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death) was soon known by everybody in Madinah. Dark grief spread on all areas and horizons of Madinah … ‘Umar was so stunned (by grief) that he almost lost consciousness.[1]

 

The Shia often bring up ‘Umar’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu denial as some sort of proof against him. If anything, it serves as strong proof that ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu loved Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam so deeply that he could not face the loss of his beloved. It was in the first stage of grief that ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu reportedly said in a state of great emotion:

By Allah, he (Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) is not dead but has gone to his Lord as Musa ibn ‘Imran went and remained hidden from his people for forty days. Musa returned after it was said that he had died. By Allah, the Messenger of Allah will (likewise) come back and he will cut off the hands and legs of those who claim his death.[2]

 

As for Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu, he was in his home when he heard of Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death. Upon hearing this tragic news, he immediately hastened towards Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Masjid.

Abu Bakr came from his house at al Sunh on a horse. He dismounted and entered the (Prophet’s) Masjid, but did not speak to the people until he entered upon Aisha and went straight to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam who was covered with hibarah cloth (i.e. a kind of Yemeni cloth). He uncovered Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam face, bowed over him, kissed him and wept, saying, “Let my father be sacrificed for you.”[3]

 

The hadith states, “Abu Bakr kissed Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam after his death.”[4]

Quite contrary to the callous and diabolic view that the Shia are portraying, Abu Bakr’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu first action was not at all to rush for the Caliphate. Rather, he made haste to see Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam first. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was so deeply affected by Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death that he broke down in tears whilst kissing Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu then reassured the Muslims:

أما بعد فمن كان منكم يعبد محمدا صلى الله عليه وسلم فإن محمدا صلى الله عليه وسلم قد مات ومن كان يعبد الله فإن الله حي لا يموت قال الله تعالى وما محمد إلا رسول إلى الشاكرين

To proceed, if anyone of you worshipped Muhammad, then Muhammad has passed away, but if (anyone of you) worshipped Allah, then Allah is Alive and shall never die! Allah said: Muhammad is no more than a Messenger Allah will reward those who are thankful.[5] [6]

 

Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma commented:

والله لكأن الناس لم يكونوا يعلمون أن الله أنزل حتى تلاها أبو بكر رضي الله عنه فتلقاها منه الناس فما يسمع بشر إلا يتلوها

By Allah, it was as if the people never knew that Allah revealed this verse until Abu Bakr recited it and all the people received it from him, and I heard everybody reciting it (then).[7]

 

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

والله ما هو إلا أن سمعت أبا بكر تلاها أهويت إلى الأرض حين سمعته تلاها أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قد مات

By Allah, when I heard Abu Bakr reciting it, my legs could not support me and I fell down the very moment I heard him reciting it, declaring that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had passed away.[8]

 

So great was ‘Umar’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu love for Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that he fell down in grief when Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu made him come to terms with the reality.

 

News of a National Emergency

Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma stayed by Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam body. After some time, Mughirah ibn Shu’bah radiya Llahu ‘anhu approached ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu and notified him of an impending emergency.

It is related by ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu that as they were seated in Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam house, a man cried out all of a sudden from outside: “O Son of Khattab (i.e. ‘Umar), please step out for a moment.” ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu told him to leave them alone and go away as they were busy in making arrangements for the burial of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. The man explained that something of importance is happening currently: the Ansar are gathering in force at Saqifah Bani Sa’idah. As the situation was grave, it was necessary that ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu go and look into the matter lest the Ansar do something which would lead to (civil) war. Upon this, ‘Umar said to Abu Bakr, “Let us go.”[9]

 

We see that the matter was not at all as the Shia like to portray. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma were devastated by Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death and they wanted very much to stay with Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. In fact, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu told the man to leave them alone and go away as they were busy arranging the burial of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was only convinced when the man said that the Ansar were about to do something that would lead to a civil war. Likewise, when ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu first informed Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu that they must head out towards Saqifah, Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu refused to come out and disregarded ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu. It was only when Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was convinced of the dire situation that he was able to pull himself away from Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam side.

‘Umar learned of this (i.e. the gathering of the Ansar at Saqifah). He sent a message to Abu Bakr to come to him. Abu Bakr sent back (a message) that he was occupied (i.e. with caring for Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam body), but ‘Umar sent him another message, saying, “Something has happened that you must attend to personally.” So he (Abu Bakr) came out to him … [10]

 

Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma very much wanted to stay with Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam throughout his funeral, and they were only persuaded to come out because of the warnings of a third man who implored them to save the Ummah from civil war. It was this precarious situation that Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma sought to diffuse. We read:

(The) Ansar said, “In case they reject our Khalifah, we shall drive them out from Madinah at the point of our swords.” However, the few Muhajirin in the assembly protested against this attitude and this led to a dispute and disorder of a serious nature and a war between the Muhajirin and Ansar seemed possible. When the situation took this ugly turn, Mughirah ibn Shu’bah left the trouble spot and came to Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Masjid to relate what was going on in Saqifah Bani Sa’idah.[11]

 

Sometimes, the Shia fail to realise (or rather, insist on not understanding) how volatile the situation was. The Ansar were ready to elect their own man and fight those who rejected their leader. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma therefore went as peacemakers and conflict resolvers, to prevent the Ansar from placing themselves at loggerheads with the rest of Arabia.

The Ansar were about to nominate Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu as Khalifah. If Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu were to declare his Caliphate, the Muhajirin would protest his nomination. The Muhajirin would then rush to nominate their own Khalifah, and the Ummah would be splintered into two rivalling nation-states.

Furthermore, if the Ansar declared their own Caliphate, nothing would prevent other tribes—not only the Makkans but others—from declaring their own leaders, which would result in a civil war between all the rivalling claimants to the Caliphate. When Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma set out for Saqifah, they did so with no intention of seeking the Caliphate for themselves but rather only to prevent the Ansar from doing so by force. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma went as peacekeepers in order to calm the situation down.

Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma took along with them Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, another Muhajir. These three Sahabah were from amongst the ten Companions promised Jannat by Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and it was hoped that the influence of these three great personalities could avert a civil war and potential disaster. In times of national crisis, the leaders of a country must be strong and steadfast in order to deal with pressing matters of state, and they cannot allow personal woes and feelings to hamper or hinder their effectiveness. If Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam were alive, he would not want Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma to delay. He would indeed want them to act swiftly to save the Muslim Ummah, which would be the best way to honour the memory of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

So the two of them (Abu Bakr and ‘Umar) hurried toward them (the Ansar). They met Abu ‘Ubaidah ibn al Jarrah (on the way), and the three of them marched towards them (the Ansar).[12]

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

I told Abu Bakr that we should go to our brothers, the Ansar, so we set off towards them, when two honest fellows met us (on the way) and told us of the conclusion the people (the Ansar) had come to. The two asked us where we were heading, and when we told them, they said that there was no need for us to approach them and we must make our own decision (i.e. elect our own Muhajir Khalifah).[13]

 

What they meant by this was what one of the Ansar suggested:

Let us have a leader from ourselves, and you (Quraysh) a leader from yourselves.[14]

 

Of course, Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhum were wise enough to know that this would reduce the Muslim union into nothing but disjointed and warring fiefdoms led by rivalling warlords. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma would in their respective Caliphates transform the Muslim state into a powerful empire that would propel the Muslims to greatness. These two men not only saved Islam from extinction (i.e. at Saqifah) but also expanded the Islamic world far and wide, ensuring a unified and stable Muslim empire, an accomplishment for which all Muslims worldwide should thank them.

 

Abu Bakr did not Desire Khilafah

It should be noted that ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu mentioned in detail during his Caliphate that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu went to Saqifah only in order to caution the Ansar against taking any action that would spark a civil war. When Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu left for Saqifah, he had no intention whatsoever of becoming Khalifah. Had this been the case, surely Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu would have brought along more than two of his supporters. If what the Shia portray is true, then should not Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu have brought with him a whole mass of his supporters and friends? Instead, he went with only two Companions to a large group of the Ansar. At Saqifah, there were thus only three Muhajirin who were far outnumbered by the Ansar. This would be a less than ideal situation for a Muhajir like Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu would have only two supporters whereas Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu had a whole gathering of Ansar to back him. Common sense dictates that if Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma had conspired to take the Caliphate for themselves, then surely they would have brought along with them more Muhajir friends.

This fact cannot be stressed enough, as it completely vindicates Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma of all suspicion. These two men were so unaware of such a happening that they went to Saqifah with no more than one man with them! Had they desired to take the Caliphate, what prevented them from taking along with them a strong group of their supporters? Why did they not take along ‘Uthman ibn ‘Affan radiya Llahu ‘anhu, Khalid ibn al Walid radiya Llahu ‘anhu, Muawiyah ibn Abi Sufyan radiya Llahu ‘anhu, etc.? If this was a coup détat as the Shia claim, then it had to be the worst planned operation ever in the history of humanity. The Ansar were the great majority at Saqifah and they were ready to pledge Bay’ah to one of their own men. If Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu wanted to further his own claim to the Caliphate, he should have brought enough of his supporters to overwhelm the Ansar. Instead, he came with only two Companions. Indeed, it was not a grab for power at all, but rather Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhum set out only to counsel the Ansar, hoping that their veteran status would set right the Ansar.

 

Why ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu remained behind

Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma did not take along ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and Zubair radiya Llahu ‘anhu because they were immediate relatives of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and it would not be fitting to bother them with such a matter during their time of grief. We read in an authentic hadith:

A person’s family and relatives are the ones responsible for arranging his burial.[15]

 

Al Tabari highlights:

Now ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib was busy preparing the Messenger (for burial), so ‘Umar sent a message to Abu Bakr (instead)…[16]

 

We read further:

(They) left ‘Ali and other (close relatives) to arrange the burial of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.[17]

 

The reality is that it is not right to complain about how ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu was not taken along to Saqifah. How can anyone complain of this when Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma did not even bring along their closest friends and supporters? Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma did not find the need to bring along ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu—or any of the other Muhajir Sahabah for that matter—because they had no idea whatsoever that an election would take place.

What the Shia criticise Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma for is actually something for which these two noble men should be praised. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma were showing softness and sensitivity towards ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, allowing him to grieve for his loved one without having to worry about the fate of the Muslim Ummah. An analogy of this is a man whose father dies and so his employee/colleague shoulders his workload for some time so that the man can go to his father’s funeral without having any other extra worries or burdens. Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhum headed out towards Saqifah—despite their grief over Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death—to deal with a major problem, and to prevent the nascent Islamic state from collapsing into nothingness. Indeed, these three men single-handedly saved Islam and prevented a great Fitnah.

 

Practical and Socio-Political Issues

In the times of Jahiliyyah before the advent of Islam, Arabia consisted of various independent and sovereign city-states. Although they were not united as one nation, the Arabs did nonetheless recognize Makkah as the centre and helm of Arabia. The Quraysh of Makkah had become very powerful and influential due to the fact that they took care of the Ka’bah. The Arabs from all over would pay the Quraysh to have them house their gods. Because of this special honour, the Quraysh of Makkah were generally honoured by all the other tribes. Meanwhile, whereas the sanctuary in Makkah was off limits to fighting and warfare, the rest of Pre-Islamic Arabia was steeped in violence from incessant tribal warfare and in-fighting.

This changed with the advent of the Prophet Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam who united all the various tribes together under the banner of Islam. Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam powerful personality brought peace to the warring factions. First, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam united the Aws and the Khazraj of Yathrib (i.e. Madinah), who had been locked into a hundred year long war. These two tribes agreed to make Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam their arbiter and broker of peace. This unity between the Aws and Khazraj bolstered the strength and prestige of Madinah in the eyes of Arabia. Even so, the various tribes of Arabia still recognised the Quraysh of Makkah to be the leaders of Arabia. When the Quraysh polytheists declared a state of hostility with Madinah, the rest of Arabia joined suite and collectively came to be known as the Confederates.

It was based on this situation that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum realised that Makkah was the key to ruling Arabia. Until Makkah was not conquered, the Muslims would never be recognised as the leaders of Arabia. For this reason, the Muslim armies marched out against Makkah and conquered it. As soon as Makkah was converted to a land of Islam, the tribes all over Arabia paid tribute to the supremacy of the Islamic State. Tribe after tribe then converted to Islam, and the Muslims were recognised as the new leaders of Arabia. It was only after Makkah was conquered by the Muslims—and the tribe of Quraysh, the unwritten leaders of Arabia, converted en masse to Islam—were the people of Arabia willing to accept the supremacy of Islam under the leadership of a Prophet from the tribe of Quraysh. We read:

The conquest of Makkah was considered the most serious advantage achieved by Muslims during those years, for it affected the course of events and consequently affected the Arabs’ whole life [sic]…for the tribe of Quraysh, at that time, were in the eyes of Arabs the defenders and helpers of (all of the) Arabs. Other Arabs were only (considered) their subordinates. The submission of the Quraysh (to Islam) is therefore estimated to be a final elimination of paganism in the Arabian Peninsula… (after which) people began to convert to Islam in very large numbers.[18]

 

We read further:

The destruction of idols installed in the Ka’bah meant the destruction of the idols all over Arabia. Likewise, the entry of the Quraysh into Islam implied the whole of Arabia coming to the fold of Islam, for all eyes were fixed on the Quraysh of Makkah to see whether they accepted Islam or not.[19]

 

The Ansar of Madinah were planning to declare themselves the leaders of the Muslim state, and this is how the gathering at Saqifah began. There was a great fear that if the Ansar declared their own man to be the Khalifah, then the tribes of Arabia would reject them, as being inferior and unfit to rule. Most of these tribes had converted to Islam after the conquest of Makkah. Before the Islamic conquest of Makkah, these Arab tribes had submitted to the leadership of the Makkan Quraysh; after the Islamic conquest of Makkah, these Arab tribes continued to submit to the same Makkan Quraysh who were now Muslim. If, however, the leadership were to suddenly switch to Madinah—and if the Ansar declared their own man to be Khalifah—then nothing prevented these other Arab tribes from similarly declaring their own leaders. The Ansar themselves knew this and they were satisfied with this idea that every tribe have their own leader, but Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma knew that this would be unacceptable for the Muslims to become disunited after they had been once united under the banner of Islam. Allah Almighty says:

And hold fast, all of you together, by the Rope of Allah and be not divided amongst yourselves.[20]

 

Worse still was the fact that after Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death, many of the new converts to Islam apostatised.

It was in this precarious situation that the Ummah needed a strong and capable leader to replace Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam quickly before the various groups split apart in complete disarray and utter chaos. It was in this atmosphere that the people needed to declare a Khalifah post-haste in order to quell any rebellion. We read:

‘Amir asked, “When was the oath of allegiance given to Abu Bakr?”

“The very day the Messenger of Allah died,” he (Sa’id) replied, “People disliked to be left even part of the day without being organized into a community (Jama’ah).”[21]

 

And this new leader could not at all come from a weak and unpopular tribe, because the Arabians would definitely not have accepted him as a leader. Such a thing would have resulted in all out rebellion and collapse of the Muslim union. What the Muslims needed was a candidate from a powerful and popular tribe with mass appeal that could secure the vote from all of the other tribes.

 

Sequence of Events at Saqifah

After Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam death, the Ansar had gathered at Saqifah and were intending on nominating their own man as Khalifah, namely Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. We read:

Being informed of the proceedings of the Ansar, Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and Abu ‘Ubaidah hastened to the meeting place and were there just in time to interrupt the finalisation of the Ansar’s choice of Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah to the successorship of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.[22]

 

Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu conveyed the following message to his fellow Ansar:

Company of the Ansar! You have precedence in religion and merit in Islam that no other tribe of the Arabs can claim. Muhammad remained ten-odd years in his tribe, calling them to worship the Merciful and to cast off idols and graven images, but only a few men of his tribe believed in him, and they were able neither to protect the Apostle of Allah, nor to render his religion strong, nor to divert from themselves the oppression that befell them all.

Until, when He intended excellence for you (O Ansar); He sent nobility to you and distinguished you with grace. Thus, Allah bestowed upon you faith in Him and in His Apostle, and protection for him and his Companions, and strength for him and his faith, and Jihad against his enemies. You (O Ansar) were the most severe people against his enemies who were not from among you, so that the Arabs became upright in Allah’s Cause, willingly or unwillingly. Through you (O Ansar), Allah made great slaughter (of the infidels) in the earth for His Apostle, and your swords (O Ansar) abased the Arabs for him. When Allah took (Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) to Himself, he was pleased with you (O Ansar) and consoled by you.

So keep control of this matter (i.e. the Caliphate) to yourselves, to the exclusion of others, for it is yours and yours alone.[23]

 

After the Ansar expressed this, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was ready to respond. However, Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu refrained him and advocated a more conciliatory tone.

In a situation packed with confusion, disorder, anger, and emotion, only a man like Abu Bakr could do what was necessary. When ‘Umar attempted to say something, Abu Bakr put a check on him for he knew that the emotionally charged ‘Umar could mishandle the already deteriorating situation. Abu Bakr himself rose to speak.[24]

 

Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

O Ansar! You deserve all the qualities that you have attributed to yourselves, but this question (of Caliphate) is only for the Quraysh.[25]

 

Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu explained:

(O Ansar) you are our brethren in Islam and our partners in religion…but the Arabs will not submit themselves except to this clan of Quraysh. We (the Quraysh) are in the centre among the Muslims with respect to our position.[26]

 

Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu reminded the Ansar that the leader should be from the Quraysh because they commanded the political authority of all of Arabia. Indeed, had the Arabs back then had a sophisticated system of polling and voting, the Arabs of the peninsula would have voted for the Quraysh to be the leaders, not the Ansar. Therefore, based on the principles of self-determination and popular sovereignty, the leader of the Muslims should be from the Quraysh (i.e. Muhajirin). ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu warned the Ansar, “The rest of Arabia would never accept a non-Quraysh (leader).”

The Ansar responded by extolling their own virtues and attempted to use this as evidence of their right to Caliphate. To counter this, the three Muhajirin reminded them that the Muhajirin also had many qualities and accomplishments. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

(We were) the first on earth to worship Allah (in Islam) and we were the patrons (of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and the supporting group of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. (It is we) who tolerated (great suffering) and suffered with him (through many) adversities.[27]

 

The Ansar had praised themselves, using this as a proof for their Caliphate. However, the truth of the matter was that the Muhajirin were the most senior in rank amongst the Muslims. The Muhajirin were the first ones to stand up for Islam. After Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam declared Islam in the land, the Muhajirin were the next after him to do so. The Muhajirin were turned out by their own people and who emigrated in the Path of Allah. Therefore, if anyone deserved the Caliphate based upon merit and service for Islam, then the Muhajirin took precedence in greatness over the Ansar. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

Now the Arabs found it most distressing that they should leave the religion of their forefathers; so from among his (Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) tribe Allah singled out the first Muhajirin, by having them affirm that he spoke the truth and by their belief in him, and consoling him and enduring patiently with him the harsh insults their tribe (directed) against them and (their tribe), calling them liars. All the people were opposed (to the Muhajirin) and rebuked them; but they were not distressed by their small numbers or by (the people’s) single-minded opposition to them, for they were the first who worshipped Allah on the earth and who believed in Allah and the Apostle.

O company of the Ansar, your superiority in religion and great precedence in Islam are undeniable. May Allah be satisfied with you as Helpers (Ansar) for His religion and His Apostle. He made his Hijrah to you, so—after the Muhajirin—there is no one among us who is in your station. We (the Muhajirin) are the leaders, and you (Ansar) are the helpers; matters shall not be settled without consultation, nor shall we decide on them without you.”[28]

 

Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu explained that although he himself was well aware of the Ansar’s greatness, it was the Quraysh who commanded the popularity of the masses of Arabia. It would not be justice for a less popular candidate to rule over a country, one who did not command the confidence of the masses. A man must have the acceptance and Bay’ah of the people in order to become Khalifah. While the Ansar may have secured the vote and support of many in Madinah, they would not be able to do so in any other part of Arabia. These other Arab tribes would then demand the Caliphate for themselves and thereby break away from the Muslim union. Therefore, in order to prevent this scenario, a leader must be chosen from a group that had the acceptance of the masses of Arabia, and this could only be a man from the Quraysh. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu explained:

The people of Arabia are not aware of anyone’s political leadership except that of the Quraysh.[29]

 

Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu then clarified:

Allah is my witness that we are not pressing the claim of the Quraysh because of any selfish interest. The proposal is prompted in the interest of the solidarity of Islam (i.e. to maintain unity and prevent civil war). To give you a proof of our sincerity, I declare before you that I do not covet the office. Here are ‘Umar and Abu ‘Ubaidah. You may choose any one of these.[30]

 

Ibn Ishaq narrates it as follows:

He (Abu Bakr) said: “All the good that you have said about yourselves (O Ansar) is deserved. Nevertheless, the Arabs will recognise authority only in this clan of Quraysh, they being (considered) the best of the Arabs in blood and country. I offer you one of these two men (‘Umar and Abu ‘Ubaidah); accept whom you please.[31]

 

The Ansar made their counter-offer, saying:

O Quraysh. There should be one ruler from us and one from you.[32]

 

Of course, this was an unacceptable solution to the problem, because nothing would prevent the other tribes from similarly demanding that they each get to nominate their own Khalifah. If this were to happen, the Muslim union would dissolve into various small and competing emirates. Not only this, but Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam never sanctioned the idea of having more than one leader, something which would create confusion and disarray. Therefore, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu rebuffed this offer, saying:

How preposterous! Two swords cannot be accommodated in one sheath. By Allah, the Arabs will never accept your rule…[33]

 

The Ansar and Muhajirin fell into argumentation. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu reminded them of Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam declaration:

يا سعد أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قال وأنت قاعد قريش ولاة هذا الأمر فبر الناس تبع لبرهم وفاجرهم تبع لفاجرهم

O Sa’d (ibn ‘Ubadah)! You know very well that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had said in your presence that the Quraysh shall be given the Caliphate because the noble among the Arab (masses) follow their (Quraysh) nobles and their ignoble follow their (Quraysh) ignoble.[34]

 

Finally, the Ansar assented and said:

صدقت نحن الوزراء وأنتم الأمراء

What you say is correct: we are your advisors and you are our rulers.[35]

 

Then Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu repeated his proposal, asking the Ansar to accept either ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu or Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhu as their next leader. We read:

Abu Bakr al Siddiq said, “‘Umar and Abu ‘Ubaidah are here: choose any one of them.”

‘Umar said, “No! Abu Bakr is the most excellent amongst the Muhajirin. He has been the Companion of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in the cave [as mentioned in the Qur’an]; Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam asked him to be the Imam to lead the prayers, and prayer is the most superior of all other articles of faith. Therefore, none (neither I nor Abu ‘Ubaidah) is entitled to assume the duties of the Caliphate in the presence of Abu Bakr.”

Saying this, ‘Umar stretched his hand first to take Bay’ah (oath of allegiance) at the hand of Abu Bakr Siddiq followed by Abu ‘Ubaidah and Bashir ibn Sa’d Ansari. After that, the people of all sides of Abu Bakr came to take Bay’ah. As the news spread, all the believers rushed to pledge their allegiance to the Khalifah.[36]

 

We see the qualities of a leader in the modest way Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu sought not the Caliphate but rather asks the Muslims to choose between ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu and Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Meanwhile, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu rejects the Caliphate himself, saying that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu is more deserving of it. In addition, Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu is so modest that he says in his inauguration speech that, “I have been chosen as your chief, although I am better than none of you,”[37] despite the fact everyone else knew that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was the most worthy! We can clearly see that neither Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu nor ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu desired the Caliphate for himself and neither furthered their own cause.

It was in this manner that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu became the first Khalifah of the Muslims. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu did not seek the Caliphate let alone steal it from ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu. The Ansar were the cause of the gathering. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma were forced to proceed to Saqifah in order to prevent a civil war. The election of Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was something unpremeditated and purely spontaneous. To this effect, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

The pledge of allegiance given to Abu Bakr was an un-premeditated spontaneous affair that was (then only later) ratified.[38]

 

Why was the Bay’ah not Delayed?

Some people might ask: Why did not Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, or Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhu suggest delaying the nomination of the Khalifah until all of the Muhajirin (such as ‘Ali) could be summoned? ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu himself explained the reason:

Because we were afraid that if we left the people (without rendering the oath of allegiance), they might (in our absence) give the pledge of allegiance after us to one of their men.[39]

 

In a slightly different version, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu explained:

خشينا إن فارقنا القوم ولم تكن بيعة أن يحدثوا بعدنا بيعة فإما أن نتابعهم على ما لا نرضى وإما أن نخالفهم فيكون فيه فساد

We feared that if we left (without rendering the oath of allegiance), no agreement would be hammered out (with the Ansar) later. (And if they then elected one of their own men) it was either to follow the Ansar in what we did not approve of (i.e. disobey Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam words), or else oppose them (i.e. with the sword), which would have led to disorder (fasad).[40]

 

Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu would later say to ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

Had I delayed the matter, it would have posed a greater danger to the unity, integrity, and solidarity of Islam. How could I send for you when there was no time?[41]

 

When Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and Abu ‘Ubaidah radiya Llahu ‘anhum arrived at Saqifah, the Ansar were only moments away from nominating Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. The three Muhajirin were able to stop the Ansar from doing that but only momentarily, and if they left without first securing the Bay’ah, they feared that the Ansar would once again proceed to elect their own man. However, when the Ansar gave their Bay’ah to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu, this was the Ansar taking a strong oath that would prevent them from nominating any of their own men. Therefore, it is clear that the Bay’ah to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was rushed in order to prevent double-mindedness on the part of the Ansar. It was less than ideal, as expressed by ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu himself, but it was born out of dire necessity and it was only with the Grace of Allah Almighty that it worked out.

 

Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah

Certain fabricated and weak narrations indicate that there was a serious crisis and power struggle that occurred in the courtyard of the Banu Sa’idah. Based on authentic narrations, however, we know that no crisis or power struggle took place; rather, in a very short span of time everyone came to a unanimous agreement that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu should become the Leader of the Believers. So in spite of what is claimed in certain false narrations, Sa’d bin ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu was among the first to pledge allegiance to Abu Bakr. Yes, it is true that, prior the arrival of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar to the courtyard of Banu Sa’idah, Sa’d did indicate that he should be appointed ruler of the Muslim nation. However, no sooner did Abu Bakr remind him of what Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said about the matter that Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu yielded and said, “You are the leaders, and we are your ministers.”

Some historians paint an unfair and dark picture of Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, claiming that he plotted against the Muhajirin to prevent them from taking away his right to the Caliphate. The claims such historians make are founded upon accounts that are not only fabricated, but also contradict Sa’d’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu past and lifelong dedication to the cause of Islam.

To be sure, Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu was among the best of Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Companions. He participated in the Second Pledge of al ‘Aqabah; he was perhaps the sole native inhabitant of Madinah that was tortured in Makkah because of his beliefs; he took part in the Battle of Badr; and he was a paragon of generosity and righteousness. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam depended on his counsel as well as the counsel of Sa’d ibn Muaz radiya Llahu ‘anhu during the Battle of Khandaq, and with the counsel they gave Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, they both proved their willingness to make sacrifices for the cause of Islam. It is inconceivable that a man with such a past could have had rekindled feelings of xenophobic tribalism, resenting the fact that the leader of all believers was chosen from a different tribe.

The false narrations I am referring to state that, after Abu Bakr became Khalifah of the Muslim nation, Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu refused to pray behind Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu, acting as if he was completely withdrawing himself from Muslim society. This is categorically false. It is clearly mentioned in authentic narrations that Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu pledged allegiance to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu and that, when Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu said to Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu, “And you indeed know, O Sa’d, that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said while you were sitting down (and listening to him), ‘The people of the Quraysh are in charge of this matter (i.e., of the Caliphate): all righteous people are followers of their righteous people, and all evildoers are followers of their evildoers,” Sa’d replied, “You have spoken the truth. We are your ministers, and you are our leaders.”[42]

One cannot rely on a false narration that smears the reputation of Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu and ignore many authentic narrations that remind us of the many sacrifices that Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu made for the cause of Islam. As for the aforementioned false narration, we know that it is false for two main reasons. Firstly, its narrator was one of the people who were subservient to his desires, and the scholars of hadith universally rejected his narrations.[43] Imam al Dhahabi commented on his narration, “As you can clearly see, its chain is utterly weak.”[44] Secondly, the actual text of the narration contradicts every piece of information we know about Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah radiya Llahu ‘anhu regarding his upright character and his lifelong dedication to promoting the cause of Islam.

 

Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Funeral

The Shia claim that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu missed Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam funeral. This is not true at all. After he saved the Ummah at Saqifah, Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu rushed back to help with Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam funeral. In fact, the only thing that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu missed was washing Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam body, something that is done by the near relatives according to Islamic custom. So we ask the Shia: What exactly did Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu miss?

Not only did Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu help with the burial, he was actually the one who is credited with deciding where Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was to be buried. We read:

The task of washing the body being over, the Companions were divided over the place of burial. Abu Bakr then said, “I have heard from the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that every Prophet is buried at the spot where he has breathed his last.” Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam bedding was accordingly removed from the place and a grave was dug for him at the spot.[45]

 

General Bay’ah

The Ansar and a few of the Muhajirin had given Bay’ah to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu at Saqifah, but many of the Muslims had not. Therefore, a day after Saqifah, Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu ascended the pulpit of Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Masjid and the masses (approximately 33 000 of the Sahabah) took Bay’ah at his hand. We read:

After the meeting at Saqifah Bani Sa’idah (and) the burial of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, Abu Bakr took the oath of allegiance from the general population and then rose to deliver his (inauguration) address…that was the day when 33 000 Companions pledged their allegiance to Abu Bakr.[46]

 

This came to be known as the General Bay’ah. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu thus became the recognised leader of the Muslim Empire. One is always astonished with the immense modesty of Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu, which contrasts sharply with the monarchs and leaders of other empires. Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu said to the people:

I have been chosen as your chief, although I am better than none of you. Thus, if I do good work, it is incumbent on you to extend your help and support me. If I go wrong, it is your duty to put me on the right path. Truth and righteousness are a trust and untruth is a breach of trust. The weak among you are strong to me unless I give them full justice, and the strong among you are weak to me unless I receive what is due from them. Abandon not Jihad. When the people hold back from Jihad, they are put to disgrace. Obey me while I keep obeying Allah and His Messenger; renounce me when I disobey Allah and His Messenger, for obedience to me is not incumbent on you then.[47]

 

Ultimately, the most modest man of the Muslims became the Khalifah of the emerging Islamic empire.

 

Superiority of Abu Bakr

33 000 Sahabah pledged their Bay’ah to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. The Muslim masses recognised the superiority of Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu above all the other Sahabah, and they came to this conclusion after reflecting on the words of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam himself. We read in the following hadith narrated by ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

So, I came to him (Rasulullah) and asked, “Which of the people is dearest to you?”

He said, “Aisha.”

I said, “Who among the men?”

He said, “Her father.”[48]

 

In another hadith, we read:

We regarded Abu Bakr as the best (of the Sahabah).[49]

 

It was Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu who was chosen by Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam to be the Imam of the prayers in Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam sickness, and therefore this is indeed an indication that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saw Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu as the most suitable successor. He did not state this directly, because then the people would view this as a religious obligation to be imposed on people, as opposed to the will of the people (as is just). But the people rightfully interpreted it as Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam vote for Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu and it is therefore no surprise that 33 000 Sahabah pledged Bay’ah to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu and nobody else.

As for ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, he himself did not view himself superior to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Although ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu may have felt for a small stretch of time that he was more fitted for the Caliphate, he would reverse this position, evidenced by the sayings of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu later in life. His son, Muhammad ibn al Hanafiyyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, narrated:

I asked my father, “Whom of the people was the best after the Messenger of Allah?”

He (‘Ali) answered, “Abu Bakr.”[50]

 

In another narration, ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

No one is brought to me who regards me as superior to Abu Bakr and ‘Umar but I will execute the punishment of one guilty of false testimony upon him.[51]

 

Ibn Taymiyyah said:

It was narrated that he (‘Ali) used to speak from the pulpit of Kufah and say that the best of this Ummah after our Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was Abu Bakr and then ‘Umar. This was narrated from him via more than eighty chains, and al Bukhari and others narrated it.[52]

 

‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

خير هذه الأمة بعد نبيها أبو بكر

The best of this Ummah after its Prophet is Abu Bakr.[53]

 

There is no doubt that the most superior of the Sahabah was Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. This was the view of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, the consensus of the Sahabah, and the position of the rightly guided Ahlus Sunnah (People of the Sunnah). Therefore, based on this, it was only fitting that Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu be declared the successor of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam determined in his final illness:

يأبى الله والمؤمنون إلا أبا بكر

Allah and the Believers rejected (for the caliphate) except Abu Bakr.[54]

Shia Account of Saqifah

Surprisingly, the Shia account of Saqifah is similar to the Sunni version. We read:

When Muhammad died, his daughter, Fatimah, her husband, ‘Ali, and the rest of the family of Hashim, gathered around the body preparing it for burial. [A] group (of Ansar) were gathering in the portico of Banu Sa’idah. It was reported to Abu Bakr that the Ansar were contemplating pledging their loyalty to Sa’d ibn ‘Ubadah, chief of the Khazraj. And so Abu Bakr and his group hurried to the Saqifah. One of the Ansar spoke first saying that as the Ansar had been the ones who supported and gave victory to Islam and since the Makkans were only guests in Madinah, the leader of the community should be from the Ansar. Abu Bakr replied to this very diplomatically. He began by praising the virtues of the Ansar, but then he went on to point out that the Muhajirin (the Makkans) were the first people in Islam and were closer in kinship to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. The Arabs would accept leadership only from the Quraysh and so Quraysh should be the rulers and the Ansar their ministers. One of the Ansar proposed: “Let there be one ruler from us and one ruler from you…” And so the argument went back and forth until Abu Bakr proposed: “Give your allegiance to one of these two men: Abu ‘Ubaidah or ‘Umar.” ‘Umar replied, “While you are still alive? No! It is not for anyone to hold you back from the position in which the Apostle placed you. So stretch out your hand.” Abu Bakr stretched out his hand and ‘Umar gave him his allegiance. One by one, slowly at first, and then rushing forward in a mass, the others did likewise…

Shia sources maintain that ‘Ali did not in fact give his allegiance to the new Khalifah until after Fatimah’s death, which occurred six months after the death of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.[55]

 

This is extracted from An Introduction to Shi’i Islam: The History and Doctrines of Twelver Shiism, a book highly praised in Shia circles and often circulated for proselytization.

 

Conclusion

An analysis of the event of Saqifah Bani Sa’idah strengthens the position of the Ahlus Sunnah. Neither Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu nor ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu conspired to steal the Caliphate, and they did not proceed towards Saqifah with this intention. The Shia cannot reproduce even a single authentic narration to indicate that this was their plan. Instead, the Shia rely on conspiracy theories that hold no weight. Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma saved the Muslim Ummah from self-destruction, and in fact, it would be these two who would transform the Arabs into a world power, one that would destroy the Persian Empire and vanquish the Roman Empire. It was these two men who brought glory to the Muslim Ummah, and instead of sending curses upon them like the Shia do, we should ask Allah to bestow His Mercy and Grace upon them; following the example set by Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, who said:

The best of this Ummah after its Prophet is Abu Bakr.[56]

 

We ask Allah to protect us from deviation and ever straying from the Straight Path.

All praise belongs to Allah in the beginning and the end. May Allah bless and send peace on our leader Muhammad, his family, and his Companions.[57]

 

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[1] Al Rahiq al Makhtum, pg. 559.

[2] The History of al Tabari, vol. 9, pg. 184.

[3] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 1242.

[4] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4457.

[5] Surah Al ‘Imran: 144.

[6] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 1242.

[7] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 1242.

[8] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4453.

[9] ‘Allamah Shibli No’mani: al Firaq, vol. 1, pg. 87.

[10] The History of al Tabari, vol. 10, pg. 3.

[11] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1, pg. 273-274.

[12] The History of al Tabari, vol. 10, pg. 3.

[13] Ibn Ishaq, Sirat Rasulillah, pg. 685

[14] The History of al Tabari, Vol. 10, pg. 3.

[15] Sunan Abi Dawood, vol. 2, pg. 102.

[16] The History of al Tabari, vol. 10, pg. 3.

[17] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1, pg. 274.

[18] Al Rahiq al Makhtum, pg. 474.

[19] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1, pg. 223-224

[20] Surah Al ‘Imran: 103.

[21] The History of al Tabari, vol. 9 pg. 195

[22] A Short History of Islam, pg. 57.

[23] The History of al Tabari, vol. 10 pg. 2.

[24] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1 pg. 274.

[25] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 6830; Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 391.

[26] The History of al Tabari, vol. 9 pg. 193.

[27] The History of al Tabari, vol. 3 pg. 219.

[28] The History of al Tabari, vol. 10 pg. 4-5.

[29] Musnad Ahmed, vol. 1 pg. 56.

[30] Khalifah ‘Umar ibn al Khattab, chapter on the Death of Rasulullah.

[31] Ibn Ishaq, Sirat Rasulillah.

[32] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3668.

[33] The History of al Tabari, vol. 9 pg. 194.

[34] Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 18.

[35] Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 18.

[36] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1 pg. 275.

[37] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1 pg. 276.

[38] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 6830; Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 391.

[39] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 6830; Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 391.

[40] The History of al Tabari, vol. 9 pg. 194; Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 391.

[41] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1 pg. 276.

[42] Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 18.

[43] Imam al Dhahabi: Mizan al I’tidal.

[44] Siyar A’lam al Nubala’.

[45] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1 pg. 246.

[46] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1 pg. 276.

[47] Tarikh al Islam, vol. 1 pg. 276.

[48] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3662; Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2384.

[49] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3655.

[50] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3671.

[51] Lisan al Mizan, vol. 3 pg. 290.

[52] Minhaj al Sunnah, vol. 1 pg. 308.

[53] Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 834.

[54] Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2387.

[55] Moojan Momen: An Introduction to Shia Islam: The History and Doctrines of Twelver Shi’ism, pg. 18-20.

[56] Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 834.

[57] Adapted from the English article penned by Ibn al Hashimi on www.chiite.fr.