The cause of the confusion

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The cause of the youth’s confusion

In my first meeting with him, the well-mannered young man addressed me in this way:

I am seriously confused and I wish that I was not born into this world!

 

I told him: Take it easy, for Allah’s mercy encompasses all things. He commanded us not to lose hope in His mercy.

(I kept on allaying his fears though I knew that he was suffering from a great depression that I had not yet uncovered.)

He said: I have heard good things about you and I come to you that I may find relief by you. I think well of you, though only Allah truly knows what resides in the heart.

I said: Allah willing, I am ready to listen to whatever you have to say. Please, feel free to share your feelings with me. Perhaps you will find the solution to your confusion, Allah willing. It is He from Whom we seek help.

He said: For some time now, I have come to know a young Shia man, whom I have been associating and working with. We have come to trust each other. He would often tell me about members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household. In fact, I have been overwhelmed by his fervent love for them. Why should it not be so, since every Muslim is required to love them? This in accordance with Allah’s injunction:

 

قُلْ لَّا أَسْـَٔلُكُمْ عَلَیهِ اَجْرًا اِلَّا الْمَوَدَّةَ فِی الْقُرْبٰی

Say (O Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam): “No reward do I ask of you for this except to be kind to me for my kinship with you.”[1]

And the Messenger’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saying: “None of you believes until I am dearer to him than his father, children and all people.”

It follows then that the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam family should be dearer to a Muslim than his own family. So I became more attached to this Shia man, in spite of all that I know about the Shia and the error of their way. His love for me increased so much so that he would come to me and put himself at my service with his car. He had really won me over with his generosity.

In the beginning, he would often tell me about good things that I thought the Shia did not believe in. He would tell me about his passionate love and that of the entire Shia for the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and members of his household. He would inform me about the Shia love for Fatimah radiya Llahu ‘anha, the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam daughter and the leader of the women of Paradise, about whom he said:

“Behold! Fatimah is part of me. He who hurts her, hurts me and he who hurts me, hurts Allah.”[2]

 

He would tell me about his passionate love for Hassan and Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma, the chiefs of the youth of Paradise. He would make me understand how deeply he and all the Shia love Imam ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam cousin, friend and son-in-law.

I would have no objection to all this because, deep in my heart, I love all the above-mentioned personalities and I told my friend: “We also love all these personalities.” He would keep quiet, even though grudgingly.

The relationship between us grew stronger and stronger; and he would take me to his friends who were similar minded, extremely well-mannered, enormously accommodating and hospitable. I was enthralled by their manners that I had a feeling that these individuals should not have been humans. They should have been angels walking on the surface of the earth. If I requested anything, I would find it the next morning in my house; if I wanted to go anywhere, they would all offer to take me in their cars.

Meanwhile, they gave me a beautiful book in which I hardly found anything of the falsehoods of which the Shia are accused of. I can still recollect that book that made me start considering becoming a Shia . It is the book titled: Ahlul Bayt- Maqamuhum, Manhajuhum, Masaruhum.

The book is filled with ahadith classified as authentic by the scholars of Ahlus Sunnah wa l-Jama’ah. It calls for loving, befriending and praising members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household. Nevertheless, it took me little by little towards the belief the Shia hold. It sometimes raises doubts and then removes them. According to that book, the Shia believe in the Qur’an and in the hadith, and they honour and respect members of the Prophet’ salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household. This is what is naturally expected from every Muslim who believes in the oneness of Allah.

I asked my friend: “Please tell me more about the Shia sect. I have heard that it is an erroneous and perverted sect founded upon insulting and cursing the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum and regarding them as disbelievers, upon hating the Ahlus Sunnah wa l-Jama’ah and upon a belief that the Qur’an has been altered, but now, I could see that your books refute all these allegations. Please tell me about Shi’ism, may Allah have mercy on you.”

My friend then gave me a book titled, al Muraja’at. I dedicated all my time to reading and rereading it. In the book, I was astonished at the confirmation of the great Sheikh of al Azhar University to all the proofs presented by the young Shia man, ‘Abdul Hussain Sharf al Din al Musawi.

I was extremely pleased with this book and wondered when the Ahlus Sunnah would be able to produce a book like this. I could sense that the elusive but much needed unity between the Shia and Ahl -Al Sunnah could easily be achieved if only our scholars could get rid of their ignorance of the reality of the Shia religion. With the help of my friend, my understanding of unity among the Muslims narrowed into a belief that all of the Ahlus Sunnah must become Shia , so that all of us will be in the ark of safety- the ark of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and the pure members of his blessed household.

I was in this situation for about four months during which time my relationship with my Shia brother became stronger and stronger. I would follow him to all their religious symposia and gatherings. I wish I did not go.

You might be surprised at this last sentence: “I wish I did not go.” Yes!

It was my habit that whenever I heard the names of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma to say: “Radi Allahu ‘anhuma” (may Allah be pleased with them). This is because Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu is the Siddiq, the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam companion in the cave and the second most important personality in Islam. He is the father of ‘A’ishah radiya Llahu ‘anha, the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam wife and the mother of the faithful. And above all, he was the khalifah of the Muslims.

As for ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, he was the second khalifah in Islam. With him, Allah made distinction between truth and falsehood. Through him, Allah strengthened Islam and many lands were conquered. He was famous for his uncompromising support for justice (and his sternness against any kind of injustice).

That was my belief concerning these two righteous men.

But these Shia had been very careful with me in the beginning. My friend would often tell me about injustices done to Imam ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and how he was deprived of his right to succession and rulership. But he would sense that I was not enthusiastic about that story until that fateful day arrived.

I was in one of their gatherings and the name of ‘Umar al Faruq radiya Llahu ‘anhu was mentioned and I said: “Radi Allahu ‘anhu”. One of them scolded me: “This (referring to ‘Umar) is

a disbeliever and an accursed apostate! Do not invoke Allah’s pleasure upon him.”

This statement hit me like a thunderbolt. I wondered how this statement tied up with the books they showed me and which did not say anything unpleasant about the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum. I concluded that perhaps this man was only a bigoted extremist. But I was surprised to find out that all of them shared the same viewpoint on ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

My friend then told me bluntly: “Our creed is based upon allegiance and renunciation; to love the pure members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household and to renounce and hate all those who attacked them and usurped their rights.”

He went on lecturing me on how Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu jointly wronged members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household; how they humiliated ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, set his apartment on fire and struck his wife, Fatimah radiya Llahu ‘anha, on her belly so hard that it led to miscarriage of her unborn baby and she herself later died from the pain of that attack. He continued telling stories of shameless deeds that even the meanest people would not think of committing let alone eminent men like Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

To be honest, my Sunni power of resistance by this time had already completely vanished. I believed all the tales they narrated about Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu and ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu such that I began to hate them, especially the story about the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam purported attempt to write a will of succession for ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and how ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu prevailed upon him not to do so.

With time and through often repeated stories about the Companions’ radiya Llahu ‘anhum alleged injustice against Imam ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and the members of his family, it became easy for me to hold a bad opinion of them; and with repeated stories about the injustice wrought against other members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household, especially ‘Ali’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu family – that later culminated in the murder of Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu – I could not help hating all those who were not Shia .

That was how I became a Shia wholeheartedly, believing things that would previously be impossible for me to believe: the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum were all infidels with the exception of few such as: al Miqdad, Abu Dhar and ‘Ammar radiya Llahu ‘anhum, who were ‘Ali’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu supporters. Therefore, the basis of the Shia religion is to renounce all the Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum except these few. Why it not be so when they deprived the members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household of their rights? It is therefore a fundamental of the Shia religion to insult and curse the Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum.

However, I was not comfortable with this ‘concept’ of cursing the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum. Whenever I was with them, I would be impacted by their talks that were emotional, and sentimental stories that revolved around the alleged injustice done to ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and the murder of Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu. They are nothing but stories repeated over and over, the objective of which is to rouse your anger and hatred against those who ‘perpetrated injustice’ against members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household and usurped their rights.

But whenever I was alone, I would tell myself: “How dare you curse Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu, who was the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam inseparable companion? How could you insult ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, on whose tongue truth was pronounced? How could you have the audacity to insult ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu, who compiled the Qur’an and protected it against anomalies and discrepancy? How could you dare curse all the Companions of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam? Can you still remain a Muslim after cursing all these eminent people?”

I am really in a state of confusion, the extent of which is known to Allah alone. I am telling you this while wishing that I was never born or that I was long dead and forgotten!

I am really in a dilemma! I cannot be counted among the Shia nor among the Ahlus Sunnah. I am haunted by the beliefs of the Ahlus Sunnah that I have held throughout my life, and by the Shia religion in which I am living now. If I am in the company of these Shia , I am inclined to the Shia religion regardless of insults and curses that this creed demands against those who never deserved to be cursed. And when I am alone, I prefer the path of the Ahlus Sunnah and the path of safety that demands loving all members of the Prophet’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam household and his noble Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum and invoking Allah to be pleased with all of them.

Do you then have remedy for this confusion of mine? Can you please clarify the incontestable truth for me? If you decide to engage me in a debate, kindly permit me to speak purely from the Shia perspective, and please, do not have any misgiving towards me for that. For I am looking for the truth from any source.

 

NEXT⇒ Remedy for the Confusion


[1] Surah al Shura: 23

[2]  This version is unauthentic as would be explained.

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