The Tenth Allegation

The Eleventh Allegation
January 19, 2016
The Ninth Allegation
January 19, 2016

BACK⇒ Return to Table of contents


The Tenth Allegation


The Allegation That Muawiyah Instituted the Cursing of ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib


There is no reliable report that Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu cursed ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu; this has been clearly mentioned by al Qurtubi and Ibn Kathir. Al Qurtubi states in al Mufhim (6/278):


It is farfetched that Muawiyah would openly curse and abuse him on account of what Muawiyah had been described with in terms of intelligence, religiousness, forbearance, and general good manners. As for what has been narrated of him in this regard most of it is a lie and unfounded.


Ibn Kathir says in al Bidayah wa al Nihayah (10/576):


None of it is reliable regarding them.


Muslim narrates (2404) in his Sahih by way of ‘Amir ibn Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqas reported on the authority of his father:


Muawiyah called for him (Sa’d) and said, “what prevents you from abusing Abu al Turab,” whereupon he said, “it is because of three things which I remember Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam having said about him that I would not abuse him and even if I find one of those three things for me, it would be more dear to me than red camels. I heard Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam say about ‘Ali as he left him behind in one of his campaigns. ‘Ali said to him, ‘O Messenger of Allah, you leave me behind along with women and children?’ Thereupon Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said to him, ‘are you not pleased with being unto me what Harun was unto Musa but with this exception that there is no prophet after me.’ And I (also) heard him say on the Day of Khaybar, ‘I would certainly give this standard to a person who loves Allah and his Messenger, and Allah and his Messenger love him too.’ We had been anxiously waiting for it, when he (the Prophet) said, ‘call ‘Ali,’ he was called and his eyes were inflamed. He applied saliva to his eyes and handed over the standard to him, and Allah gave him victory. (The third occasion is this) when the (following) verse was revealed, ‘let us summon our children and your children…’ Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam called ‘Ali, Fatimah, Hassan and Hussain and said, ‘O Allah, they are my family.’”


The response to this allegation is as follows:

  1. The statement of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu to Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu, “what prevents you from abusing Abu al Turab?” could be interpreted as why did you not criticise his ijtihad and point out the correctness of my ijtihad, and Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqas was one of those who stayed out of the fitnah.
  2. Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu wanted to know the position of Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu with regards to ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu so he asked him the reason that prevented him from criticising, was it out of reverence for him [‘Ali] or was it out of fear or piety.
  3. If Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu really wanted to curse ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu he would not have asked of that from Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhu since he was one of those who did not get involved in the internal conflict. Furthermore, it has been established via authentic narrations that he, Sa’d, prayed against those who cursed ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and Allah accepted that supplication.[1] So how can Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu demand that he curse ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu?

Al Nawawi, in his commentary on Muslim (15/175), states:


This statement of Muawiyah does not clearly mean that he requested him to curse ‘Ali. Rather, he asked the reason that prevents him from cursing. It is as if he is saying: Have you withheld out of piety, fear or any other reason; so if it is out of piety and reverence for him then you have adopted the correct policy and if for any other reason there is a different response. Perhaps Sa’d was with a group who used to curse but refrained from cursing and was not in a position to rebuke them so he asked the question prompting him, and thus providing the opportunity to object to those who were cursing. Some have said that it has the potential for an alternative interpretation and that it means why did you not object to his ijtihad and make apparent to the people the correctness of our opinion and ijtihad?


Al Qurtubi said in al Mufhim (6/276):


This is not clear in that he demanded that he be cursed. Instead it was a question regarding what was holding him back from doing so, so that he could bring out his virtues or the opposite as was clear from his response. When Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu heard that he remained silent and acknowledged the right for what it was.


Al Baladhuri has mentioned an incident of this nature in Ansab al Ashraf (5/124) with no chain and said:


Muawiyah delivered a sermon one day and mentioned ‘Ali in a derogatory manner…


He narrated again (5/30) with a chain from al Mada’ini —, from ‘Abdullah ibn Fa’id and Suhaim ibn Hafs, who both said:


Muawiyah wrote to al Mughirah ibn Shu’bah, “curse ‘Ali openly and ridicule him” so he wrote back saying, “I do not like of you, O Amir al Mu’minin, that whenever you find a fault with someone you ridicule him, and whenever you get angry you hit, and there is no barrier of tolerance between that and you, and you do not bring forth your pardon!”


Suhaim ibn Hafs he is Abu al Yaqzan al ‘Ujayfi. I have not found anyone endorsing statements regarding him nor any disparaging statement except the statement of al Mizzi in Tahdhib al Kamal (8/216):


A narrator of history and Suhaim is his title and his name is ‘Amir.


As well as the statement of Ibn Nadim in his Fihrist (138):


He was knowledgeable with regards to historical reports, genealogy, the merits and virtues, and he was reliable.”


‘Abdullah ibn Fa’id in this chain he is the same person, Suhaim ibn Hafs.


Al Khatib has narrated in Mudih Awham al Jam’ wal Tafriq (2/165) by way of al Zubair ibn Bakkar — who said — a reliable man narrated to me — saying:


Abu al Hassan al Mada’ini narrated to me, Abu al Yaqzan is Suhaim ibn Hafs, and Suhaim is a title of his and his name is ‘Amir ibn Hafs. Hafs had a son called Muhammad who was the eldest but did not take his agnomen from him. Hafs was very dark in complexion and was known as al Aswad. Abu al Yaqzan said to me my mother named me with 15 names. So if I say Abu al Yaqzan narrated to us, then it is Abu al Yaqzan, and if I said Suhaim ibn Hafs, or ‘Amir ibn Hafs, or ‘Amir ibn Abi Muhammad, or ‘Amir ibn al Aswad, or Suhaim ibn al Aswad, or ‘Abdullah ibn Fa’id or Abu Ishaq al Maliki then it refers to Abu al Yaqzan.[2]


Al Sakhawi mentioned him in Fath al Mughith among those narrators who had numerous titles.


Also, Suhaim ibn Hafs did not meet with Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, rather he was born a long time after the reign of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu; Suhaim passed away in 190 A.H.


Even if this was proven of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu it would be considered either a sin, or an erroneous ijtihad which could be forgiven with repentance or righteous deeds which erase the evil deeds.


Ibn Taymiyyah has written in Minhaj al Sunnah (4/368) in refutation of Ibn al Mutahhar al Rafidi:


As for what he has mentioned regarding the cursing of ‘Ali, then the cursing occurred on both sides as the fighting occurred. And all of this, whether a sin, or an incorrect ijtihad, the Forgiveness of Allah is achieved through repentance and righteous deeds that erase the evil ones, as well as tribulations that compensate for all of that.


NEXT⇒ The Eleventh Allegation

[1]  See al Siyar (1/116) regarding the incident of the man who abused ‘Ali and Sa’d prohibited him but the person did not stop, so Sa’d prayed against him and no sooner did he complete that a camel came and stomped him until he died. Al Dhahabi then said, there are many chains of transmission for this incident which have been narrated by Ibn Abi al Dunya in Mujabi al Du’a.

[2]  See al Kifayah (366) and Fath al Mughith (3/212)

Back to top