Abu al Qasim Sa’d ibn ‘Abdullah al Qummi writes that ‘Abdullah ibn Saba’ was the first person to criticise and disclaim his association with Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhum. He claimed that ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu himself ordered him to do so.
The motive for these deviant sects (whose beliefs are based on falsehood and superstitions) coming into existence is quite clear; that is, to try and dismantle the Muslims from within and to provoke civil strife and disunity amongst one another by spreading disinformation and myths. After failing to attack Islam openly, the enemies of Islam — especially the Jews with their rancour and hatred for Islam and Muslims — turned to these conniving tactics. ‘Abdullah ibn Saba’ began promulgating his false creed and even attempted to motivate the people of Egypt to revolt against ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu, claiming that he usurped the khilafah from ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, citing as evidence Nabi’s bequest to ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
Sayed ‘Alawi ibn Muhammad Balfaqih writes in Min A’qab al Bid’ah al Muhammadiyyah al Tahirah:
A certain group has treaded a path of (pseudo) love for ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu. It is a dangerous path indeed! They accuse the previous khulafa’; Abu Bakr, ‘Umar and ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhum of having usurped ‘Ali’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu khilafah. In doing so, they have effectively shattered the ijma’ of the best of generations, a consensus of paramount importance in the eyes of all. The implications of such a claim are colossal: viz. ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu employed Taqiyyah when he pledged his allegiance to the previous three khulafa’. How could this be? ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu was neither a coward nor would he ever shy away from the truth; rather, he was a bold and courageous leader. When he spoke, people listened, and when he gave a command, they obeyed.
Speaking about the perception people have of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, the author of Nahj al Balaghah writes:
‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu said: “Two groups of people will be destroyed in my name: the first will be those who have excessive love for me, such love that will lead them astray, and the second will be those who have excessive hatred for me, such hatred that will lead them astray. Therefore, act moderately (with regards to me) and follow the al sawad al ‘azam (the vast majority). For verily, Allah’s Ta’ala help is with the majority. And beware of disputation and dissention.”
 Sa’d ibn ‘Abdullah al Qummi was a famous Shia scholar from the city of Qumm, in modern-day Iran. He died in the year 301 AH.
 Also known as Ibn al Sowda’, ‘Abdullah ibn Saba’ was a Jewish zealot from San’aʾ — the capital city of Yemen. He claimed to have professed his Islam during ‘Uthman’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu khilafah. He held an active presence in Iraq, Egypt, and the Levant (modern-day Syria, Palestine, Lebanon and Jordan). He would contrive and proclaim fallacies so as to turn the Muslims away from Islam. He was a mischief-maker and a charlatan; he even tried to create a state of anarchy and social upheaval during ‘Uthman’s khilafah. Imam al Tabari rahimahu Llah (d. 320 A.H) in Tarikh al Rusul, Ibn ‘Asakir rahimahu Llah in Tarikh Dimashq and Ibn Kathir rahimahu Llah in al Bidayah wa al Nihayah have all written extensively about him. He is mentioned by both the Sunni and Shia scholars in their respective books. In fact, there is a narration from the hadith scholar al Sha’bi rahimahu Llah (d. 103 A.H) affirming that the first person to resort to lies and fabrications was in fact ‘Abdullah ibn Saba’.
Hereunder are but a few examples of what the scholars (both Sunni and Shi’i) have said about him:
For a detailed synopsis of the events, see Muhammad Amhazun’s, Tahqiq Mawaqif al Sahabah fi al Fitnah min Riwayat al Imam al Tabari
Abu al Qasim al Qummi: al Maqalat wa l-Firaq no: 20
 Referring to the Shia
 Tarikh ibn ‘AsakirBack to top