Tuesday, November 30, 2010


It requires just one good spell of rains to change the otherwise pale and dull environment into a lush green one. One is motivated to go for a long drive and enjoy the beauty around.

On one such day I decided to take a drive along the nearby highway and enjoy the scenic beauty. I found many agriculture fields full of greenery but I also found certain fields which were not as green as the others. There were also some non yielding patches of land.

In a discussion with an agriculturist friend of mine I learnt that there are 3 categories of land.
• A fertile land has the ability to cultivate crops on its own. It just requires water to harvest the crop.
• A semi-fertile land needs soil treatment based on the characteristics of the soil along with water and once it is treated it can become fertile.
• A non-fertile land is full of rocks and sand and whatever treatment you do on it, it would not yield any harvest.

This explains that though the same amount of rain was received; the land behaved differently based on its own ability.

We have received the philosophy of Islam through the holy presence of Rasool (SAW) and The Holy Quran. The same message was conveyed to all but still based on personal abilities each one has a different understanding and a different level of faith. Like a fertile land whether we have the ability to harvest the crop of faith within us needs to be understood? We would thus refer the holy book in this regard.
Let me refer the following ayahs from the holy Quran:

•“Aur tum teen giroh ho jaaoge. Pas daayein taraf waale kya kehne daayein taraf walon ke. Aur baayein taraf waale phoot gaye naseeb unke baayein taraf waalon ke. Aur aage badhne waale wo to aage hi badhne waale hain.” – (Surah-e- Waaqia, ayah 7-8-9-10)

“(And you shall be three sorts. Then (as to) the companions of the right hand; how happy are the companions of the right hand! And (as to) the companions of the left hand; how wretched are the companions of the left hand! And the foremost are the foremost.)”

The above ayah divides people into 3 different categories based on their level of faith; the companions of the right hand, the companions of the left hand and the foremost. The ayah further says that the companions of the right hand would remain happy while the foremost are the people who would remain ahead of everybody else. They are ahead in faith and conduct. They have a fertile heart which nurtures the harvest of faith.

With reference to the above ayah, Allama Ibn-e-Marduiya has quoted a tradition from Ibn-e-Abbas and according to it ‘the foremost’ are Yousha bin Nuon, Momin Aal-e-Yaseen and Ali Ibn-e-Abu Talib (A.S) and amongst them Ali (A.S) is the best. (Ref: Durr-e-Mansoor, Vol 6, P 154).

Imam Fakhruddin Razi has mentioned a similar tradition in his Tafseer-e-Kabeer that mentions Mawla Ali as the best amongst ‘the foremost’. And that is why Rasool (SAW) has often referred to Mawla Ali (A.S) as Kull-e-Imaan (Complete in faith).

In order to understand the faith and conduct of Mawla Ali, let us look at the battle of Ohad. On the 7th of Shawwal 3 A.H, Rasool (SAW) reached Ohad. Here, the Meccan forces were ready to advance for the battle. The ring wing of the cavalry was led by Khalid bin Walid. In the fierce battle around nine or ten standard bearers were slain by Mawal Ali (A.S)’s sword.

Mawla Ali (A.S) along with Muslim champions like Abu Dajana’ Mos’ab b. Omeir and Sahel b. Honeif then broke the ranks of the enemy and gained their camp. This made the enemies flee. But the eagerness of Muslims for spoil turned the tide of victory. The archers deserted the post and thus gave Khalid bin Walid ample opportunity to strike back. In this attack Mos’ab b Omeir, the champion warrior, who bore great resemblance to Mohammed (SAW) fell dead. Taking advantage of this Ibn-e-Soraqa proclaimed aloud that Mohammed (SAW) was slain. Most of the Muslims including many of the companions of Rasool (SAW) took to flight and deserted him.

In the following ayah from Surah-e-Aal-e-Imran, Allah (SWT) has mentioned the flight of Muslims from the battlefield of Ohad.

“(Musalmanon tum) uss waqt ko yaad karke sharmao jab tum (badhawaas) bhaage pahad per chale jaate the. Pas (choonke) Rasool (SAW) ko tum ne (aazurda) kiya Khuda ne bhi tum ko (iss) ranj ki sazaa main (shikast ka) ranj diya taaki jab kabhi tumhari koi cheez haath se jaati rahe ya koi musibat pade to tum ranj na karo aur sabr karna sikho aur jo kuch tum karte ho Khuda uss se khabardaar hai.” – (Surah-e-Aal-e-Imran, ayah 153)

“(Remember, as you were rushing up (the hill) without turning back to look, though the Prophet was calling you from the rear, He requited you with anguish for an anguish that you do not fret for missed opportunity and what befell you, for God is aware of all that you do.)”

This ayah clearly addresses to those people who deserted Rasool (SAW) and fled from the battlefield. It was Mawla Ali (A.S) alone who stood with him and helped him. Rasool (SAW) then inquired as to why did he not flee with others, to which Ali replied that he belonged to the prophet (pbuh) and had no business with others and he being a believer would not like to turn a disbeliever or an infidel by resorting to flight.

Again in the following ayah The Quran says:

“Aur Yeh (ittefaqi shikast issliye thi) taaki Khuda sacche imaandaron ko zaahiri muslamanon se alag dekhle aur tum main se baaz ko darja-e-shahadat per faayaz kare aur Khuda (hukm-e-Rasool (SAW) se) sartaabi karne walon ko dost nahin rakhta. Aur ye (bhi manzoor tha) ke sacche imaandaron ko (saabit kadmi ki wajah se) nira khara alag karle aur naafarmaanon (bhaagne walon) ka matiya mait kar de.” – (Surah-e-Aal-e-Imran, ayah 140-141)

“(And that Allah may know those who believe and take witnesses from among you; and Allah does not love the unjust. And that He may purge those who believe and deprive the unbelievers of blessings)”

Here, in the above ayah Allah (SWT) has clarified that the defeat of the battle of Ohad was to differentiate between a believer from a non-believer. By remaining steadfast on the battlefield, Mawla Ali (A.S) remained a believer during the testing time and proved that he is Kull-e-Imaan in a true sense which Quran testifies.

Mawla Ali (A.S)’s steadfastness, courage and commitment to Rasool (SAW) was appreciated by Allah (SWT) as in this very battlefield ‘Zulfiqaar’, the sword was sent down for Mawla Ali (A.S). The holy Quran refers to this in the following manner:

“Aur Hum hi ne lohe ko naazil kiya jis ke zariye se sakht ladai aur logon ke bahot se nafa ki baatein hain aur taake Khuda dekh le ke be dekhe bhaale Khuda aur usske Rasoolon ki kaun madad karta hai, beshak Khuda bahot zabardast Ghalib hai.” – (Surah-e-Hadid, ayah 25)

“(And We sent down Iron, in which is (material for) mighty war, as well as many benefits for mankind, that Allah may test who it is that will help, Unseen, Him and His messengers: For Allah is Full of Strength, Exalted in Might (and able to enforce His Will).”

The above ayah refers to a specific Iron which was sent down. In the battlefield of Ohad, Gabriel, the angel brought down the sword ‘Zulfiqar’ and presented it to Mawla Ali (A.S) by saying: ‘La fataah illa Ali La Saif illa Zulfiqar.’ (Zulfiqar is the only effective sword and Ali the unique champion). Allah (SWT) thus gave Ali (A.S) the sword and made him the leader of His army.

In order to validate the above result let me quote the following ayahs from Surah-e-Maida:

“Ae Imaandaro tumhare malik sarparast to buss yehi hain Khuda aur uss ka Rasool (SAW) aur woh momineen jo pabandi se namaz adaa karte hai aur haalat-e-ruku main zakat dete hai. Aur jisne Khuda aur Rasool (SAW) aur unhi Imaadaro ko apna sarparast banaya to Khuda ke lashkar main aagaya aur issme shak nahin ke Khuda hi ka lashkar ghalib rehta hai.” – (Surah-e-Maida, ayah 55-56)

“(Verily your leader is only Allah and His messenger and those who believe; those who establish worship and pay the poor-rate while they bow down in ruku. And whoever takes Allah and His apostle and those who believe for a guardian, then surely the party of Allah are they that shall be triumphant.)”

Here, the believer who pays the poor-rate while bowing down in ruku is Mawla Ali. The ayah is referring to the incident where he gave his ring to a beggar while bowing down in the ‘ruku’. (Ref: Imam Nasai in Saheeh-e-Nasai, Aljam’a Bain-ul-Sihah-ul-Sittah, Sa’labi).

Thus it is clear that the leader of believers is none but Mawla Ali (A.S) as seen on various occasions. And it was Mawla Ali (A.S) alone for whom Allah (SWT) sent down the sword and appointed him as Amir-ul-Momineen.

Are there any more references of Mawla Ali’s faith and commitment apart from the holy wars in the Holy Quran? Let us see the following ayah for this purpose:

•“Aur logon main se Khuda ke bande kuch aise hain jo Khuda ki (khushnudi) haasil karne ki gharaz se apni jaan tak bech daalte hain aur Khuda aise bandon per bada hi shafqat wala hai.” – (Surah-e- Baqra, ayah 207)

“(And among men is he who sells himself to seek the pleasure of Allah; and Allah is Affectionate to the servants.)”

The above ayah mentions the event of Hijrat when Mawla Ali (A.S) slept on the bed of Rasool (SAW) during the night. The situation was dangerous and Rasool (SAW) had planned to go to Yasreb. He asked Mawla Ali (A.S) if he would sleep on his bed covering himself with his cloak.

Unlike any other person who would have been concerned about his own safety, Mawla Ali (A.S) inquired if this act would insure the safety of Rasool (SAW)’s life. When Rasool (SAW) answered in the positive Mawla Ali (A.S) thanked Allah and slept on the bed of the holy prophet (pbuh) covering himself with his cloak. Thus he was ready to sacrifice his life for the sake of Rasool (SAW) and hence he sold his soul to Allah (SWT).

Imam Husain (A.S), son of Mawla Ali (A.S) was praying for forgiveness of Umah of Rasool (SAW) rather than safety of his own household even as he offered his last ‘sajda’ on the day of Ashura. We have seen in the holy Quran that Allah (SWT) promised safety to His prophets and their households from atrocities; thus Nuh (A.S) prayed to Allah (SWT) to save his son and Yaqub (A.S) constantly prayed for the safety of Yusuf (A.S), but here Imam Husain (A.S) had submitted himself to the Will of Allah in a manner that surpassed the manner of the prophets.

Thus Mawla Ali and his household displayed a different level of faith and willingness to submit themselves to Allah’s Will.

It was 18th Zil Hajj, 10 A.H at Ghadir-e-Khum, the point on the journey from which the various pilgrims would disperse to their respective destinations, after performing his last pilgrimage Rasool (SAW) called all the pilgrims for one huge assemblage here. He instructed Salman (R.A) and other companions to make a pulpit of rocks and he then sat on the ‘mimber’ thus created. In front of this gathering he declared Mawla Ali (A.S) as his successor and announced “Man Kunto Mawla fa hazaa Ali un-Mawla”. (Ref: Sahih Tirmizi, V2, P298, Bukhari, V5, Book 59).

At this point Allah sent down the following ayah:

•“Aaj Maine tumhare din ko kaamil kardiya aur tum per apni ne’mat poori kardi aur tumhare iss Deen-e-Islam ko pasand kiya.” – (Surah-e-Maida, ayah 3)

“(This day have I perfected your religion for you, completed My favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.)

It has been mentioned by compilers that this ayah was revealed after the announcement of “Man Kunto Mawla” at Ghadir-e-Khum. (Ref: Durr-e-Mansoor, Jalalluddin Suyuti, V3, P 19, Tarikh by Khatib al Baghdadi, V8 P 290, 596, Yanabi-al-Mawaddah from Abu Hureira by Al-Qudoozi Al-Hanafi).

This was the revelation of commencement of Imamate in the house of Ahl-ul-bait. Thus it can be inferred that by acknowledging Mawla Ali (A.S) as the successor of Rasool (SAW) and our Imam, our religion is perfected failing which we are at a risk of getting an imperfect religion.

If we see the life of Mawla Ali (A. S) during Rasool (SAW)’s time we would find that Allah (SWT) did test him on various occasions be it holy wars or Rasool (SAW)’s bed on the night of Hijrat. After proving to the world his steadfastness and submission to Divine Will, Allah sent down the sword, made him the ‘Commander of Faithfuls’ and ‘Imam-e-Muttaqeen’ and perfected the religion on these acknowledgments.

It seems then that Allah (SWT) has made it mandatory for the Umah of Rasool (SAW) to acknowledge the status and stature of Mawla Ali to be a true-believer. Let us see the following ayahs for confirmation on the above inference:

•“To Jab farishte un ki jaan nikalenge uss waqt un ka kya haal hoga ke unke chehron per aur unki pusht per maarte jayenge. Ye iss sabab se ke jin cheezon se Khuda na khush hai uss ki to yeh log pairvi karte hai aur jis main Khuda ki khushi hai uss se bezar hain to Khuda ne bhi un ki karastaniyon ko akaarat kar diya” – (Surah-e-Mohammad, ayah 27-28)

“(So how (dreadful) will it be when the angels remove their souls, striking at their faces and their backs! This is because they followed the matter which displeases Allah, and they disliked what pleases Him – He therefore squandered away all their deeds.)”

Here, the above ayah is mentioning the state of a specific group of people on their death-bed. It would be a dreadful death for them as the angels would remove their souls by striking at their faces and backs, a rather scary and unfortunate thing.

The subsequent ayah further clarifies that since they disobeyed Allah by following whatever was disliked by Him and did not follow what pleased Him; they were meted with such a treatment.

While commenting on the above ayah Ibn-e-Marduiya and Ibn-e-Asaker have quoted a tradition from Abu Saeed Khudri that ‘Munafikeen’ would be recognized by their animosity for Mawla Ali (A.S). Also, Ibn-e-Masood has quoted a tradition that during the time of holy prophet (pbuh), we would identify a ‘Munafik’ due to his hatred for Mawla Ali (A.S). (Ref: Durr-e-Mansoor, vol 6, P 66).

Thus it is the dreadful state of ‘Munafik’ on his death-bed which above ayah mentions. He gets the treatment for his hatred and disloyalty to Mawla Ali, which displeases Allah. Their hearts are like the non-fertile land from which a crop of faith cannot be nurtured.

Let us see one more ayah related to death in Quran:

•“Yeh woh log hain jinki roohain farishte iss haalat main qabz karte hain ke woh (najaasat-e- kufr se) paak-o-pakizah hote hai to farishte unse (nihayat tapaak se) kehte hai salaam-un-alay kum jo naikiya duniya main tum karte the uss ke sile main Jannat main (be-takalluf) chale jao.” – (Surah-e-Nahl, ayah 32)

“(When the angels receive the souls of those who are blameless they will say: "Peace on you. Enter Paradise as recompense for what you did.)”

Now, when we contemplate on the above ayah, we would understand that there are the groups of people who are blameless and who would get the reward of Paradise on their death-bed. There is no long wait till the Day of Judgment for them to enter the comforts of Paradise and thus they are successful in true sense.

The ayah also mentions that they are rewarded for whatever they did in this world. That means that whatever they did Allah has liked and appreciated it. In the previous ayah from Surah-e-Mohammed we found out that It is hatred for Mawla Ali (A.S) that Allah dislikes the most. That means that Love for Mawla Ali (A.S) is the quality He likes the most.

That is why the holy Prophet (pbuh) has said this for Love for Mawla Ali (A.S):

•As per the order of God, I give these tidings that your friends will be rewarded in Heaven and your enemies are doomed for Hell.” - (Ref: Yanabi-al-Mowaddat (Bombay Edition, P 107)

 Thus Hub-e-Ali (Love for Mawla Ali) is the doctrine to be successful on the death-bed and get rewarded by the limitless bounties of Paradise then and there while animosity against Amir-ul-Momineen results in painful death and gloom of Hell.

Just as the semi-fertile land needs an appropriate treatment so that it becomes fertile, there is a section of people if well-guided, can have the fertile hearts which can nurture faith. Let us see few ayahs in this connection.

•“Tum kya achhe giroh ho ke logon ki hidayat ke waaste paida kiye gaye ho. Tum logon ko achhe kaam ka to hukm karte ho aur buray kaamon se rokte ho aur Khuda per Imaan rakhte ho aur agar ahl-e-kitab bhi isi tarah imaan laate to unke haq main bahot achha hota un main se kuch to imaandar hai aur aksar badkaar”. – ( Surah-e-Aale Imran, ayah 110)

“(You are the best of the nations raised up for (the benefit of) men; you enjoin what is right and forbid the wrong and believe in Allah; and if the followers of the Book had believed it would have been better for them; of them (some) are believers and most of them are transgressors.)”

The above ayah is addressed to the best of the people, who are born to guide the mankind and help it differentiate between right and wrong. Ibn-e-Abi Hakim has quoted Hazrat Abu Ja’far that this group of people are Ahl-ul-bait of Rasool (SAW). (Ref: Tafseer-e-Suyuti, Vol 2, P 64)

Thus it is Ahl-ul-bait who can guide the mankind. Now let us see one more ayah from Surah-e-Tur:

•“Aur jin logon ne imaan qubool kiya aur unki aulaad ne bhi imaan main unka saath diya to Hum unki aulaad ko bhi unke darje tak pahoncha denge aur Hum unki kaarguzariyon main se kuch bhi kam na karenge, har shakhs apne a’maal ke badle main girvi hai.” –( Surah-e-Tur, ayah 21)

“(And those who accepted faith, and whose descendants followed them with faithWe have joined their descendants with them, and have not reduced anything for them from their deeds; every soul is trapped in its own deeds.)”

The above ayah says that the faithful descendants of faithful forefathers would join them and thus Allah (SWT) shall increase their stature and rank in that sense.

We just saw that Ahl-ul-bait are the best people created to guide mankind. Later on their descendants (Saiyeds) in form of Pirs and Sufis successfully carried the mission of spreading the perfect religion.

And by doing this they increased their rank and stature in Allah’s court. The religion is perfected by way of acknowledging the leadership of Mawla Ali and hence these Sufi saints propagated Hubb-e-Ali (Love for Mawla) and induced Mawla Ali’s love in the hearts of their followers and strengthen their faiths.

So while Mawla Ali is ‘Mushkil Kusha’ Hazrat Khwaja Moinnuddin Chisti (R.A) is ‘Gharib Nawaz’. Again Mawla Ali (A.S) is ‘Kull-e-Imaan’ then Hazrat Hasan Kabir-ud-din (R.A) is ‘Kufra-Shikan’. Lastly, while Rasool (SAW) is ‘Habib-e-Khuda’, Hazrat Nizam-ud-din Auliya (R.A) is ‘Mehboob-e-Ilahi’.

I would like to end my article with the famous ‘Munajaat’ by great Sufi Lal Shahbaaz Qalandar displaying his love for Mawla Ali (A.S):

•Haiderium Qalandaram Mastam Banda-e-Murtuza Ali Hastam
Peshwa-e-Tamaam Rindaanam Ke Sag-e-koo-e-Sher-e-Yazdaanam

( I am Haideri (a follower of Haider), I am a Qalandar and I am intoxicated (with inspiration).I am a servant of Ali Murtaza (aka Ali ibn Abi Talib)
I am leader of all saints, Because I am a dog of the lane of "Allah's Lion" (referring to Ali Murtaza))

O Our Lord! We have found the perfect religion and doctrine of salvation. Give us enough strength so that we hold onto this tightly as it is a great favour which You have bestowed on us. And include us in Your successful servants.” Aamin.