Saturday, October 15, 2011

Divine Association

One day while returning from my office I saw a newly opened fast-food restaurant in an adjacent complex. I remembered visiting the restaurant in Mumbai and hence I went inside to have a look at the menu. I found everything to be similar to their Mumbai outlet right from the ambience to the prices and the quality of food. 

A gentleman came forward and provided me with all the details.  And he proudly announced that he was the owner of the shop and it was the franchise of the fast-food company, which he had started. Had he not told me, it would have been difficult to make out that it was not a company owned outlet but a franchisee

A franchise is a right granted to an individual or a group by the company to market its product and services in the specified territory. Thus within this territory the franchise owner is the ultimate authority appointed by the company. 

**This franchisee-franchisor association has helped various companies promote and trade their products and services across the world successfully. Let us try to find out through this article that Divine Association which has benefitted Islam and made it a successful religion the world over. 

We start with Almighty Allah’s following instruction to the holy Prophet (SAW) in Surah-e-Jinn:

  • “(Ye bhi) kehdo ki main tumhare haq main na burayee ka hi ikhtiyar rakhta hoon aur na bhalayee ka – (Surah-e-Jinn, ayah 21) 
  • “(Say, "It is not in my power to cause you either harm or good")
It is only Allah (SWT) – the Most Powerful, the Most Beneficent who can help the mankind and even harm them if needed. Does it mean that the presence of holy Prophet (SAW) in our lives has not done any good to us? 

  • “Khuda ne to imaandaron per bada ehsaan kiya ke unn ke waaste unheen ki qawm ka ek Rasool (SAW) bheja jo unhain Khuda ki aayatein padh padh ke sunata hai aur unn ki tabiyat ko pakizah karta hai aur unhain Kitab (Kitab-e-Khuda) aur aqal ki baatein sikhaata hai agarche wo pehle khuli hui gumrahi main pade the.” - (Surah-e-Aale Imran, ayah 164) 
  • “(Allah did confer a great favour on the believers when He sent among them a messenger from among themselves, rehearsing unto them the Signs of Allah, sanctifying them, and instructing them in Scripture and Wisdom, while, before that, they had been in manifest error.)” 
When we observe the above ayah we find that there are so many benefits Allah (SWT) has made us count while referring to the holy Prophet (SAW). In fact in the above ayah He says that the holy Prophet’s presence amongst us is His Great Favour. So if there are multiple benefits because of the holy Prophet (SAW) why did the first ayah say that it is not in his power to do any good to us? This needs to be further pondered upon. 

  • “Qasam hai sitare ki jis waqt ke woh utra. Tumhara rafeeq na bhatak gaya hai aur na bahka hai. Aur woh khwahishe nafsaani se kuch nahin kehta. Jo kuch woh kehta hai woh nahin hai magar Wahi hai jo uski taraf bheji jaati hai. Usko badi quwwaton waale aur badi aqal waale ne taalim kiya.”  - (Surah-e-Najam, ayah,1-5) 
  • “(I swear by the star when it goes down. Your companion does not err, nor does he go astray; Nor does he speak out of desire. It is naught but revelation that is revealed, The Lord of Mighty Power has taught him)”
The above ayahs give us various results and provide us clarity on the above point which we were contemplating. The holy Prophet (SAW) never errs; hence he is without any flaw. He never goes astray hence he is always steadfast on the straight path. He does not speak anything out of his will and desire. He only speaks whatever has been revealed to him. It means whatever he has said in his life is a revelation of Allah. These revelations are called ayahs in Quran and outside Quran they are called ahadith of the holy Prophet (SAW). This is the Divine Association our holy Prophet (SAW) has with the Almighty Allah. And this association provides him all the power to benefit us. 

And with the following ayah Allah (SWT) has further informed us on the importance of the presence of holy Prophet (SAW) in our lives:
  •   "Aur Ae Rasool (SAW) Hum ne tum ko tamam alamon ke liye rehmat hi karke bheja hai". – (Surah-e-Ambiya, ayah 107)
  • (“And We have not sent you but as a mercy to the worlds.”)
Allah (SWT) has created the Sun to provide us with light & warmth in day time. If we avoid Sunlight we will have to live in darkness and forego many other benefits of it. Hence it is required to be under the comfort of Sunlight whenever need arises. Our holy Prophet (SAW)’s presence is similar to this. He is mercy to the worlds; hence the seekers of Allah’s Mercy need to approach the holy Prophet (SAW). Without his intercession Allah’s Mercy will never reach us. 

**Allah’s Mercy: In the light of various ayahs we saw divine association our holy Prophet (SAW) has with Allah (SWT) and hence the right to bestow Allah’s Mercy over the mankind has been granted to the holy Prophet (SAW). 

Holy Prophet (SAW) got all his instructions from Allah (SWT) and he obeyed every instruction given to him. His mission was just to convey these instructions to the Ummah and he was not made accountable to ensure whether they were being followed or not, which Quran has clarified on various occasions. Let us see one of such instructions on Jihad in the following ayah:

  • “Pus (Ae Rasool (SAW)) tum Khuda ki raah mein jihad karo aur tum apne nafs ke siwa aur kisi ke zimmedar nahin ho aur imaandaron ko jihad ki targhib do.” – (Surah-e-Nisa, ayah 84)
  • “(Then fight in Allah's cause - Thou art held responsible only for thyself - and rouse the believers.)”
Allah (SWT) orders holy Prophet (SAW) to perform Jihad. And also requires from him to motivate the believers to do the same, but holds him responsible only for himself (his ‘nafs’) and nobody else; as in Arabic the ayah says ‘Illa Nafsaka’ meaning ‘except your nafs’. What does his nafs include let us try to understand.

Conduct of Mawla Ali (A.S) in various holy wars fought during the time of holy Prophet (SAW) and the time after that is well documented by Islamic scholars and historians and they have vouched for his steadfastness and bravery. He followed the instructions given by holy Prophet (SAW) to perfection.

Also, on different occasions the holy Prophet (SAW) referred to his relation with Mawla Ali (A.S) as similar to the relationship of Musa (A.S) with Haroon (A.S), so let us first see an ayah related to Musa (A.S) and Haroon (A.S)’s relationship and then we will further contemplate on the above point.
  • “Tub Musa (A.S) ne arz ki Khuda wanda Tu khuub waqif hai ke apni zaat khaas aur apne bhai ke siwa kisi per mera qaboo nahin buss ab hamare aur nafarman logon ke darmiyan judai daal de. “ – (Surah-e-Maida, ayah 25)
  •  “(He (Moses) said: "O my Lord! I have power only over myself and my brother: so separate us from this rebellious people!")” 
The ayah says that Musa (A.S) prayed to Allah (SWT) to protect him and his brother (Haroon (A.S)) from the rebellious people as he acknowledged that he only had the authority over himself and his brother and nobody else. In the light of this ayah and the holy Prophet (SAW)’s  comparison of his relationship with Mawla Ali (A.S) to Musa (A.S)’s relationship with Haroon (A.S) when we observe the ayah of Surah-e-Nisa mentioned above where Allah (SWT) has instructed the holy Prophet (SAW) for ‘Jihad’ and made him responsible only for himself; it seems that the ‘nafs’ or the ‘self’ of holy Prophet (SAW) included Mawla Ali (A.S) as well.

In the battlefield of Ohad, when the holy Prophet (SAW) was deserted by his companions and left alone it was Mawla Ali (A.S) who remained with him and helped him. The holy Prophet (SAW) asked him why he not fled with others to which Ali (A.S) replied that he belonged to the Prophet (SAW). He being a believer would not like to turn a disbeliever or an infidel by resorting to flight.  (Ref: Tabari; Ibn Athir; Madarij-al-Nabowat, Habib-ql-Siyar; Rawdzat-al-Ahbab.)

In the light of ayahs, hadith and Mawla Ali (A.S)’s conduct in ‘Jihad’ we could infer that Mawla Ali (A.S) was ‘nafs’ of the holy Prophet (SAW) to which Allah (SWT) has referred to in the ayah pertaining to Jihad  (ayah no. 84) of Surah-e-Nisa . Let us now see an event mentioned in Quran which will endorse our inference.

When the Christians of Najran contested the Prophethood of holy Prophet (SAW), Allah (SWT) instructed the holy Prophet (SAW) to call both the parties to the event for a ‘Mubahela’. The ayah is also called ayah-e-Mubahela for this reason:
  • “Phir jab tumhare paas ilm (Quran) aa chuuka us ke baad bhi agar tum se koi (Nasrani) Isa (a.s) ke baare main hujjat kare to kaho ki achha maindaan main aao Hum apne beton ko bulaae tum apne beton ko, Hum apni aurton ko bulaae tum apni aurton ko, Hum apni jaanon ko bulaae tum apni jaanon ko, uske baad Hum sab milkar Khuda ki baargaah main  gid gidaae aur jhooton per Khuda ki la’anat kare...” – (Surah-e-Aale-Imran, ayah 61) 
  •  “(…If any one disputes in this matter with thee, now after (full) knowledge hath come to thee say:“Come! Let us gather together, - our sons and your sons, our women and your women,    ourselves and yourselves. Then let us earnestly pray and invoke the curse of God on those who lie.)”
As instructed in the verse, each party was to bring their women, their sons and Anfosana. While the Christians brought a great delegation of learned scholars, the holy Prophet (SAW) summoned Hazrat Fatima (S.A) in place of women of his house. Hassan (A.S) and Hussain (A.S) in place of his sons and Hazrat Ali (A.S) asAnfosana’ meaning part of his ‘nafs’ or self. Both the parties then were needed to pray and invoke curse of Allah on the liars. 

The Christian delegation looking at these five purified souls and their holy spirits quickly conferred amongst them and called off the Mubahela. They agreed not to question the nobility of the holy Prophet (SAW) and his mission. (Ref: Imam Fakhruddin Razi in Tafseer-e-Kabeer, Vol II, P 73, Allama Zamakhshari in Tafseer-e-Kashshaf)

**The holy Prophet (SAW) neither errs nor he goes astray and he does not speak anything but whatever is revealed to him by the Almighty Allah. While Mawla Ali (A.S) is the part of his ‘nafs’ or ‘soul’, thus even he does not err, neither he goes astray and his conduct during his entire life is the example of how the instructions of the holy Prophet (SAW) needs to be followed. And hence his conduct is Allah’s ‘Wahi’ (revelation) in human form. 

Our above inference shows a strong association Mawla Ali (A.S) has with Almighty Allah. In the light of an ayah that showcases status of Mawla Ali (A.S) with respect to Allah (SWT) and degree of his nearness to the Almighty let us further substantiate this fact:
  • “Aur logon mein se Khuda ke bande kuch aise hein jo Khuda ki (khushnudi) haasil karne ki gharaz se apne nafs tak bech daalte hain aur Khuda aise bandon per bada hi shafkat 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.)”
Imam Ghizali in his Tareekh-e-Khamees writes that the above ayah of Surah-e-Baqra was revealed mentioning the sacrifice of Mawla Ali (A.S) when he slept on the bed of the holy Prophet (SAW) during the night of Hijrat risking his own life to save the holy Prophet (SAW) and thus helped the cause of Islam. Various prominent Islamic historians, on the authority of Ibn-e-Abbas, have also documented a similar tradition in their work referring to the above ayah with Mawla Ali’s sleep on the bed of the holy Prophet (SAW) at the night of ‘Hijrat’. (Ref: In Mustadrak by Imam Hakim, Volume 3 Page 4)

The ayah highlights the sacrifice of Mawla Ali (A.S) by saying that he sold himself to seek the pleasure of Allah. The ‘nafs’ of Mawla Ali (A.S) was purchased by Allah (SWT) on this night of Hijrat. Imagine if someone helps your cause risking his own life what would you do? Would not you want to help him or reward him to the best of your capacity? I would definitely try to do my best to reward such a helper who is ready to risk his life to help me.

Allah (SWT) is Most Beneficent and Merciful, and the Most Powerful. He is ‘Ala Kulle Shayeen Kadeer’. So what would be the level of His reward? As the ayah says that in return of ‘nafs’ of Mawla Ali (A.S), Allah (SWT) granted him with His Pleasure. So whatever pleases Ali (A.S) pleases Allah (SWT) and whatever displeases Ali (A.S) displeases Allah – The Almighty.

And in one of the sermons which he addressed to Hazrat Salman Farsi (R.A) and Hazrat Abu Zarr Ghaffari (R.A), Hazrat Ali (A.S) has narrated the rewards he got from Allah – The Most High:  
  • O Salmán! O Jandáb! Verily, Allah has made me His Trustee over His creations and His Vicegerent on His earth, in His territories, and over His servants. Allah has given me what no artist can depict and no man of understanding can truly comprehend. One, who knows me in this manner, becomes a momin.”  
Then  he further continued in the same sermon:

  • “When my name was written on the throne of sky, it attained its calmness. When it was inscribed on the mountains, they were upraised. When written on the earth, it became stable. When it was inscribed on the wind, it started flowing….” (Ref: Excerpts from Sermon of Marefat-e-Nooraniyat of Imam Ali (A.S), Nah jul Israr,
**Allah’s Pleasure: Allah (SWT) has granted Mawla Ali (A.S) with His Pleasure, hence the seeker of Allah’s pleasure now should approach Mawla Ali (A.S) without his intercession it would not be possible to please Almighty Allah. 

Mosques are built so that we worship our Lord. Hence Allah (SWT) gives strict instructions on our conduct in Mosques:  
  • “Aur ye ki masjidein khaas Khuda ki hain to logo Khuda ke saath kisi ki ibadat na karna.”  - (Surah-e-Jinn, ayah 18) 
  •  "(And the places of worship” are for Allah (alone): So invoke not any one along with Allah)”
Only Allah (SWT) is to be worshipped and nobody else is worth worshipping along with Him otherwise it would lead to ‘Shirk’. ‘Namaz’ is the highest form of worship and hence Muslims everywhere in the world throng to Mosques to perform ‘Namaz’. Let us try to understand ‘Namaz’ then. 

‘Namaz’ starts with Surah-e-Hamd. It is mandatory to recite this Surah in the beginning of every ‘Namaz’ otherwise Namaz does not start. The ayahs (6 & 7) of this Surah are the prayer to tread the straight path of those who have been bestowed by Allah’s Grace. Sa’labi in his tafseer has mentioned a tradition from Abu Hureira that the ‘straight path’ means the path taken by Mohammed (SAW) and the children of Mohammed (SAW). (Ref: Sa’labi in his Tafseer, Waki ibn-e-Jarrah in his commentary). 

Again, at the end of every ‘Namaz’ it is mandatory to send ‘durood’ and salutations on the holy Prophet (SAW) and his holy Progeny, without which ‘Namaz’ remains incomplete. Thus ‘Namaz’ starts with a prayer to follow the path taken by the holy Prophet (SAW) and his progeny and it ends with ‘durood’ on them.

**It means that sending ‘durood’ and salutations on the holy Prophet (SAW) and his holy Progeny and discussing their virtues amongst ourselves and praying to Allah (SWT) to make us capable enough to follow their path is an integral part of our prayers. Thus Zikr-e-Ahl-ul-bait should not be mistaken as ‘Shirk’ but it is an integral part of Zikr-e-Khuda.

Almighty Allah reveals His Glory through His creations. These creations are His Signs to understand His Greatness. As He says in the following ayah:
  • “Kya tumne nahin dekha ke kashtiyan samandar mein Khuda ki ne’mat se chalti hein ke wo apni nishaniyon main se ba’az tum ko dikhlade be-shak har sabr karne wale aur shukr karne wale ke liye uss main bahot si nishaniyan maujood hain.” – (Surah-e-Luqman, ayah 31) 
  • ” (Do you not see that the ships sail in the ocean by the grace of God, that He may show you some of His glories. Verily there are signs in this for those who constantly persevere and give thanks.)”
Whatever happens in this world is because of the Grace of Allah (SWT), as the above ayah indicates that ships sail in the ocean by His Grace. So invoking Allah’s Grace is to get all our desires fulfilled. 

Keeping this in mind, let us see following excerpts from Hadeeth-e-Kisa, this hadeeth is a tafseer of ayah-e-tatheer (Surah-e-Ahzab, ayah 33). Jabir Ibn-e-Abdullah Ansari (R.A) narrates from the authority of Lady Fatema (S.A), the beloved daughter of the holy Prophet (SAW) that:
  •  “Then the Lord, Almighty Allah said: ‘O My Angels! O inmates of the Heavens! I created this solid firmament, well-stretched earth, well-lighted moon, shinning sun, rotating planets, rippling oceans, floating boats, and all other things for the sake and love of these five persons who are inside the cloak.’
    At this, the Archangel Jibraeel (A.S) said: ‘O Lord! Who are they inside the cloak?’

    The Lord said: ‘They are Ahl-ul-Bait of the Prophet and the assets of the Prophethood. They are Fatima (S.A), her father, her husband and her two sons.’ 
The ayah from Surah-e-Luqman says that whatever happens is due to the Grace of Almighty Allah, while in the hadeeth-e-Kisa, Almighty Allah says that He created everything for the sake and love of Fatima (S.A), her father (The holy Prophet (SAW)), her husband (Mawla Ali (A.S)) and her two sons (Hassan and Hussein (A.S)) i.e. family of Fatima (S.A) – The Panjetan Paak (A.S). 

Again if we go back to ayah of Surah-e-Hamd (ayah 6 & 7) which is a prayer for us to tread the straight path taken by Mohammed (SAW) and his children; who were bestowed by Allah’s Grace it seems logical that Allah’s Grace is nothing but in loving them and following them. 

**Allah’s Grace: Thus in the light of ayahs of Surah-e-Hamd and Surah-e-Luqman and Hadeeth-e-Kisa, Allah’s Grace is the love for family of Fatima (S.A). If she and her family is happy with us Allah’s Grace will always be with us. Without the intercession of family of Fatima (S.A), it is not possible to invoke Allah’s Grace.

Allah (SWT) has created this world with a purpose. In one of the ahadeeth-e-Qudsi Allah (SWT) informs the purpose of this world to his first creation Adam (A.S):
  •  “O Adam! Suppose if they (Mohammed (SAW) wa Aale Mohammed (SAW)) had not been there, I would neither have created you, nor would I have given the attire of creation to the Heavens, Hell, Skies and Earth.”  (Ref: Ma’ani Al Akhbar, P 124)
The Purpose of Allah creating this world is His love for Mohammed (SAW) and his children. And in this love He has concealed His Grace. He wanted the ‘Ummah’ to understand His Purpose and in return He wished to shower us with His Grace and hence Allah (SWT) instructed the holy Prophet (SAW) to ask his ‘Ummah’ to reward him for his messengership by loving his Ahl-ul-bait in the following manner:
  • "Ae Rasool (SAW) tum kehdo ke main apni tableegh-e-risalat ka apne karabatdaron ki mohabbat ke siwa tumse koi sila nahin maangta” – (Surah-e-Shura, aayat – 23)
  •  “(‘Say: I do not ask of you any reward for it but love for my near relatives’)”
 Here the love of relatives of the holy Prophet (SAW) is love for Fatima (S.A), Ali (A.S) and their children Hassan (A.S) and Hussain (A.S). (Ref: Sa’labi, Suyuti, Baidhavi, Bukhari, Muslim, Ahmed ibn Hambal, Allama Zamkhashri Vol 3, P 68).

**Allah’s Purpose: Thus family of Fatima (S.A) is not only Allah’s Grace but they are the Purpose of Allah. And if we remain dedicated to them we ensure that Allah would be pleased with us. This would keep us steadfast on the straight path. Allah’s Mercy would be bestowed upon us and we would always be under His limitless Grace.

So let us along with Almighty Allah send ‘durood’ and salutations to the holy Prophet (SAW) and his holy Progeny, the way Quran says:

  • “Ae Ahl-ul-bait (Nabuwwat) tum per Khuda ki rehmat wa Usski barkatein (naazil ho).” – (Surah-e-Hud, ayah 73)
  •  “(The Mercy of Allah and His Blessings are on you, O Ahl-ul-bait)”

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Identity of a Momin

A man is hidden behind the following two aspects of his personality:

• His Belief 
• His Conduct 

His beliefs cannot be seen by the human eye but we can recognize them on the basis of his actions. Thus his conduct is the mirror which reflects his beliefs. Consider this, if I consider myself as your friend, unless I help you when you need me the most, you might not come to know about my feelings. But once I came to your rescue you would know me as your true friend even if I did not acknowledge this verbally. My deed spoke what words had not. But if somebody, after making many false promises fails you; you would not consider him to be your friend any more. Thus here again what mattered was his action and not his promises. That is why the English idiom aptly says ‘Actions speak louder than words’. 

 Thus if we wish to know how a person is we need to observe his conduct. It will reveal his true identity. In that sense even in Islam, the parameter of differentiation between a believer (Momin) and a non-believer (Kafir) is the conduct of an individual. His actions speak a great deal about his faith. 

With this article we will try to establish this inference. Let us see what Allah (SWT) says about faith in Quran: 

• “Kya logon ne ye samajh liya hai (sirf) itna keh dene se ke hum imaan laye, chhod diye jayenge aur unnka imtihaan na liya jayega aur Humne to unn logon ka bhi Imtihaan liya jo unn se pehle guzar gaye garaz Khuda unn logon ko jo sacche hain yaqinan alaheda dekhega aur jhoothon ko bhi zaroor dekhega.” – (Surah-e-Ankabut, ayah 2-3) 

“(Do people think that once they say, ‘We believe,’ they will be left alone and not be put to the test? We certainly tried those who have gone before them, so God will certainly distinguish between those who are truthful and those who are lying.)”

Mere verbal acceptance of faith is not considered anything by Allah (SWT) and He puts to test all the people who claim to be believers. He differentiates a believer (Momin) from a non-believer (Kafir) after trying their faiths. Hence Allah (SWT) gives importance to conduct and action instead of words. We will now see the following two ayahs from Surah-e-Tawba:

• “Aur Musalmanon yeh log to Khuda ki qasmein khayenge ke woh tum main hi ke hain halanke woh log tum main ke nahin hain. Magar hain yeh log buuzdil ke agar kahin ye log panah ki jagah (Kila’a) ya chhupne ke liye ghaar ya ghus bhaithne ki koi aur jagah pajayen to usi taraf rassiyan todte hue bhaag jayen.” – (Surah-e-Tawba, ayah 56-57) 

“(They swear by God that they are believers like you; but they are not. They are afraid (to appear in their true colours): if they could find a place of refuge, or a cave or any hiding-place, they would run there with frantic haste.)” 

The above ayah discusses certain hypocrites who claimed to be believers but they were coward and Allah (SWT) detests their actions. It further substantiates our inference that the believer is judged solely on the basis of his deeds and actions. And a believer (Momin) is brave in his conduct and ready to sacrifice everything for the cause of Allah.

Having inferred this now let us see the life of Abu Talib (A.S). There are differences amongst Muslims related to the faith of Abu Talib (A.S); some people conveniently forget what he did for Islam and the holy Prophet (SAW) and they consider him as a non-believer as they cannot find any documented proof of his reciting ‘Kalema’ on the deathbed. Let us see what Quran has to say on this:

• “Aur Hum ne Bani Israel ko dariya ke uss par kardiya phir Firaun aur uss lashkar ne sarkashi ki aur shararat se unn ka peechha kiya yahan tak ke jab woh doobne laga to kehne laga ke jis Khuda per Bani Israel imaan laaye hain main bhi uss per imaan laata hoon. Uss ke siwa koi Ma’abud nahin aur main farmabardar bandon se hoon. Ab (marne ke waqt imaan laata hai) halaanke isse pehle tu nafarmani kar chuka aur tu to fasadiyon main se tha.” - (Surah-e-Yunus, ayah 90-91)

“(So We brought the Children of Israel across the river. Pharaoh and his troops pursued them arrogantly and aggressively. When he was about to drown, [Pharaoh] exclaimed, ‘I believe that there is no deity save Him in whom the Children of Israel believe, and I am of those who surrender themselves to Him!’ ‘Only now? When you had always been a rebel, and a wrongdoer.)”

In his entire life Firaun did everything to oppose Musa (A.S), the prophet of his time. He created hurdles and harassed the Bani Israel and thus he was rebel and a wrongdoer throughout his life. His showcasing faith in Allah (SWT) on his deathbed did not give him any benefit and he remained a ‘Kafir’ and died so. 

On the contrary Abu Talib (A.S) did everything to protect Mohammed (SAW) - the last prophet, from the pagans of Arab. He helped the Prophet (pbuh) in his mission and was his guardian. After all his efforts do you still feel that Allah (SWT) would have waited for Abu Talib (A.S) to recite a ‘Kalema’ to accept his faith and services? Did not his deeds speak a lot about his love for the Prophet (pbuh) and his belief in the religion of Islam? 

We have understood that Allah (SWT) judges people on the basis of their deeds in the light of various ayahs which we have contemplated upon. Now Let us see those deeds which Allah (SWT) likes the most: 

• “Madina ke rehne walon aur unn ke gardo nawah dehatiyon ko yeh jaaiz na tha ke Rasool-e-Khuda ka saath chhod dein aur na ye (jaaiz tha) ke Rasool (SAW) ki jaan se be-parwah ho kar apni jaanon ke bachane ki fikr karein, ye hukm us sabab se tha ke unn (jihad karne walon) ko Khuda ki raah mein jo taklif pyaas ki mehnat ya bhook ki shiddat ki pahonchti hai ya aisi raah chalte hain jo kuffar ke ghaiz or ghazab ka baais ho ya kisi dushman se kuch yeh log haasil karte hain to buss uske aewaz main (unnke nam’ae amal main) ek nek kaam likh diya jayega. Be-shak Khuda neki karne walon ka ajr (wa sawab) barbaad nahin karta.” – (Surah-e-Tawba, ayah 120) 

“(It was not proper for the people of Madinah and those desert Arabs around them to hold back from following God’s Messenger, and to prefer their own lives to his life. This is because whenever they suffer from thirst or weariness or hunger for God’s cause, and whenever they take any step which provokes those who deny the truth, or inflicts any loss upon the enemy, it shall be counted as a good deed in the sight of God—God will not deny the righteous their reward)”

Allah (SWT) likes those who are ready to sacrifice their own life for the sake of holy Prophet (pbuh) and his mission. For such people Allah (SWT) has promised great rewards and their good deeds would be accepted by Him. Thus protecting the holy Prophet (pbuh) and being there when he needed is the most rewarding and appreciated virtue by Allah (SWT). 

After the holy Prophet (pbuh) began preaching Islam, members of the other Quraishite clans felt threatened and they started pressurizing Abu Talib (A.S) to stop his nephew and control him. Despite all this, Abu Talib (A.S) remained supportive of the holy Prophet (SAW) and defended him from the other heads of Quraish.

Prominent Islamic historians have documented his noble gestures. Ali b. Burhanuddin Shafei in his book ‘Insanul Oyoon’ has described the benevolence of Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) towards the Prophet (SAW) as follows:

'Every night Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) would ask the Prophet (SAW) to go off to bed, and when everybody was asleep, Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) would make any one of his sons or brothers or cousins to sleep on his (SAW) bed so that people who intended to attack the Prophet (SAW) could not do so.' 

It was during this period that the unbelievers of Mecca tried to trouble the Prophet (SAW) in various ways. All sorts of difficulties and tortures were inflicted upon him. Thinking Abu Talib (A.S) to be old, they threatened him with their plots, but this could neither stop his endeavors nor did it affect his steadfastness. 

Thus the deeds mentioned in the above ayah are in sync with whatever Abu Talib (A.S) did for the sake of holy Prophet (SAW); hence it again establishes him as a Brave and Selfless Momin. 

In order to further understand this we will see his life in the light of Quran. Mentioning ayahs that indicate the virtues of a Momin we would relate them with his conduct during his lifetime. Let Quran give its own verdict on the faith of Abu Talib (A.S). 

As Quran says in the following ayah:

• “Ae Imaandaro agar tum Khuda ke deen ki madad karoge to Woh bhi tumhari madad karega aur tumhain saabit qadam rakhega.” – (Surah-e-Mohammed, ayah 7) 

“(O you who believe! if you help (the cause of) Allah, He will help you and make firm your feet.)” 

Virtue of a believer is to readily help the cause of Allah, and in return Allah (SWT) promises to make him firm on his feet and thus keep him steadfast on the right path. 

Most of the Islamic historians unanimously write that without the help of Abu Talib (A.S) and his son Ali (A.S) it would have been difficult for Islam to get established and gain so much popularity and acceptance among the people. (Ref: Tahzeebul Mateen, Vol 1 P 13, Ibne Abil Hadeed in his work) 

Thus Abu Talib (A.S) contributed a lot in the cause of Allah (SWT) and thus to think that he was an unbeliever is contradicting the above ayah and hence a great sin in itself. 

Another ayah on conduct of a Momin:

• “Ae Rasool (SAW) unn logon se kehdo ke agar tum Khuda ko dost rakhte ho to meri pairvi karo ke Khuda (bhi) tum ko dost rakhega aur tum ko tumhare gunaah bakhsh de ga aur Khuda bada Bakhshnewala Maherbaan hai.” – (Surah-e-Aale Imran, ayah 31) 

“(Say, ‘If you love God, follow me and God will love you and forgive you your sins. God is most forgiving, and most merciful.’)” 

A person who claims to love Allah (SWT) should follow the holy Prophet (SAW). If he does so Allah (SWT) would love him in return and would be forgiving and merciful towards him. Thus the parameter for love and belief in Allah (SWT) is a person’s support to the holy Prophet (SAW). When someone is a constant source of support and comfort to the holy Prophet (SAW) and remains his guardian throughout his life, would not he be one of the greatest believers then? 

In the presence of Abu Talib (A.S) once the holy Prophet (SAW) was preaching his followers. The apostates of Quraish in order to destroy the mission of holy Prophet (SAW) approached Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) with the demand of surrendering the holy Prophet (SAW) to them right away. Determined Abu Talib (A.S) replied “If a she-camel could surrender its young one to somebody else, then I also will hand over Mohammed (SAW) to you.” (Ref: Minhajun Nabuwwah Muhaddise Dehalvi vol. 2 pg. 77)

In the light of above ayah we can further establish the credentials of Abu Talib (A.S) as a God-fearing, God-loving True Momin. 

Let us see the following ayah now: 

• “Momineen momineen ko chhod ke kafiron ko apna sarparast na banaaye. Aur jo aisa karega to use Khuda se kuch sarokar nahin magar (iss qism ki tadbiron se) kisi tarah unn (ke shar) se bachna ho to (khair) aur Khuda tumko Apne hi se darata hai aur Khuda hi ki taraf laut kar jana hai” – (Surah-e-Aale Imran, 28) 

“(Let not the believers take the non-believers for wali (guardian) rather than believers; and whoever does this, he shall have nothing of (the guardianship of) Allah, but you should guard yourselves against them, guarding carefully; and Allah makes you cautious of (retribution from) Himself; and to Allah is the eventual coming.)” 

Allah (SWT) orders all the believers specifically in the above ayah not to take non-believers as their guardian and if somebody does so he shall not find Allah (SWT) as his guardian. So when an ordinary believer cannot have a non-believer as a guardian, why did Allah (SWT) allow the holy Prophet (SAW) to be guarded by Abu Talib (A.S) had he been a non-believer? Would not it contradict the above ayah? This further confirms that he was a true-believer and Allah (SWT) appointed him as the guardian of the holy Prophet (SAW). 

The following ayah endorses his guardianship:

• “Kya Uss ne tumhain yateem paakar panah na di (zaroor di)?” – (Surah-e-Zoha, ayah 6) 

“(Did He not find you an orphan and give you shelter (and care))?”

In the major tafseer of the holy Quran by Islamic scholars of various sects it is mentioned that the above ayah has been revealed to showcase the protection and shelter provided by Abu Talib (A.S) to the holy Prophet (SAW). Thus his protection to holy Prophet (SAW) was Allah (SWT)’s protection

Ibn Hajar in his book writes 'When Abdul Muttalib (A.S) expired he wrote in his last will to Abu Talib (A.S) to raise the Holy Prophet (SAW). Hence Abu Talib (A.S) nurtured him (SAW) with lots of love and affection, not even raising his own son Ali (A.S) in the same manner

And Allah (SWT) confirms that it is He who guides the fathers, forefathers and descendants of his chosen Prophets in the following ayah:

• “Aur Humne Ibrahim ko Ishaq wa Yaqub (saa beta pota) ataa kiya Humne sabki hidayat ki aur unn se pehle Nooh ki bhi Hum hi ne hidayat ki aur unn hi Ibrahim ki aulaad se Dawood wa Sulaiman wa Ayyub wa Yunus wa Musa wa Harun (sabki Hum hi ne hidayat ki) aur nekokaron Hum aisa hi sila ataa farmate hai aur Zakariya wa Yahya wa Isa wa Iliyas (sab ki hidayat ki) aur (ye) sab Khuda ke nek bandon se hain. Aur Ismail wa Yosha wa Yunus wa Lut ki (hidayat ki) aur sabko sare jahan per fazilat ataa ki aur (sirf unhiki nahin balke) unnke baap dadaon, aur unnki aulaad aur unnke bhaibandon main se (bahoteron ko) muntakhab kiya aur unhain sidhi raah ki hidayat ki.” – (Surah-e-An’am, ayah 84-85-86-87) 

“(And We gave to him Ishaq and Yaqoub; each did We guide, and Nuh did We guide before, and of his descendants, Dawood and Sulaiman and Ayub and Yusuf and Musa and Haroun; and thus do We reward those who do good (to others). And Zakariya and Yahya and Isa and Ilyas; every one was of the good; And Ismail and Al-Yasha and Yunus and Lut; and every one We made to excel (in) the worlds: And from among their fathers and their descendants and their brethren, and We chose them and guided them into the right way.)” 

From the above ayah it is clear that Allah (SWT) guides his Prophets to the right path and not only them He also guides their fathers, descendants and their brethren and keeps them steadfast on the true path. Hazrat Abdul Muttalib (A.S) was the grand-father of the holy Prophet (SAW) and father of Abu Talib (A.S) – the guardian and uncle of holy Prophet (SAW).) They were guided descendants of Ibrahim (A.S) and believers of deen-e-Ibrahim before Islam was revealed. And since they were always on the true-path their reciting ‘Kalema’ or not should not be used as a pretext to claim that they were not true Momins. 

Hazrat Abdul Muttalib (A.S) followed the religion of Ibrahim (A.S) and the proof of this is the event of the elephants which Abraha had brought to destroy the Ka’aba. The event also finds mention in Quran in the form of an ayah. Abdul Muttalib (A.S) was the caretaker of Ka’aba and hence prayed to Allah (SWT) to protect the Holy Ka’aba from Abraha. He then approached Abraha and asked him to release his livestock. Abraha got shocked and said “You are the chief of this tribe and I thought you would plead to me to spare the Ka’aba.” To this Abdul Muttalib (A.S) replied “I am the owner of these animals and have therefore come to ask for them. As for the Ka’aba, its Master is there to take care of it.”  

Maqatil narrates that Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) made a will to Bani Hashim on his death bed in the following manner: 

“O Bani Hashim, if you all obey the holy Prophet (SAW) and if you all believe in his truthfulness you will be guided.”

In Midarajan Nabuwwah (of Mohaddisse Dehalvi) and in Rauzatus Safa vol. 2 the following sermon of Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) addressing the people, which also served as his will, has been recorded: 

'O Quraish! You are the most pious servants of Allah. I recommend Muhammad (SAW) to you in matters of righteousness and virtue. He is the trusted one of Quraish and the truthful one of Arabia and he possesses all the virtues for which I am making a will to you. He (SAW) has brought such good news, which has been accepted by your hearts, but your tongue has chosen to deny it on account of fear of taunts. On the contrary, I see that the weak and the defenseless have accepted his (SAW)’s invitation and have testified in his Shariat and revere him. Thus they have become the leaders and your chiefs have been humiliated. The proud ones have been humbled and the humble ones have become self-sufficient. Those who distanced themselves from him (SAW) are the unfortunate ones. I can see that the people of Arabia are attached to him (SAW) and have expanded their hearts for his love and have very dutifully and diligently prepared themselves to follow him and serve him. O Quraish! Befriend Muhammad (SAW) and supporters of his group. I swear by Allah those people who do not tread the path shown by him (SAW) will not find guidance, and only they will accept and adhere to his ways and qualities who are virtuous. If death could have been delayed and there would have been some more time left in my life, I would be helping him and as far as possible I would have repelled all dangers from his path.'

Life of Abu Talib (A.S) in the light of Quran has proved that he was a devout Momin committed to protect the holy Prophet (SAW). Let us now see few references about his faith: 

• Abu Talib (A.S) supported the holy Prophet (SAW) since he had a great faith in his message being the last and final message from Allah (SWT). The faith of Abu Talib (A.S) was expressed through his sayings which came in the form of poetry as he used to say ‘I verily know that the religion of Mohammed is the best amongst all religions.” (Ref: Tareekh Ibn Katheer 3:42, Fath al-Baari Fi Shar-h Saheeh al-Bukhari 7:153, Al-Isaabah 4:116 and many more)

 • Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (A.S) asked Younus Bin Nabatah: “O Younus, what do people say about Abu Talib?” Younus replied: “People say that he is in a shallow in the fire from which his brain is boiling. Imam al-Sadiq (A.S) said: “The enemies of Allah are lying. Abu Talib (in the paradise) is with the prophets, truthful, martyrs and pious people, who are the best to be with. (Ref: Shaikh al-Abtah 32, al-Hujjah 17, al-Ghadeer 7:394 from Kanz al-Fawaa’ed). 

• Imam Ali (A.S) said: “By Allah, Abu Talib was a faithful Muslim (Mo’min), keeping his faith secretly, not to cause to Bani Hashim harm from Quraish boycott. (Ref: Al-Hujjah 24, Al-Ghadeer 7:389, Mo’jam al-Qoboor 1:200).

• Imam Ali (A.S) also said: “By Him who sent Muhammad as a prophet, if my father’s intercession is given to forgive all the sinners on earth, Allah will forgive all of them. (Ref: Tathkirat al-Khawaas 11). 

• The reason of the allegation against Abu Talib is clarified by the Prophet (SAW) when he told Imam Ali: “O Ali, you have an example from my brother Isa (A.S); as the Jews hated him, they accused his mother.” (Ref: Kanz al-Ummal by al-Muttaqi al-Hindi) 

• It is narrated by Hazrat Abu Bakr that Abu Talib (A.S) did not die but after he said: “I bear witness that there is no God but Allah, and Mohammad is His messenger.” (Ref: Sharh al-Nahj by Ibn Abil Hadeed 3:312, Shaikh al-Abtah 71, Al-Bidayah wal-Nihayah 3:123, Al-Isaabah 4:116, Dala’il al-Nobowwah by al-Bayhaqi 1:120, Kash al-Ghummah by Al-Sha’rani, 2:144). 

After seeing the above references on his faith, let us end the article with few words of Abu Talib (A.S) recorded by prominent scholars which showcase his love for our beloved Prophet (SAW). Mohammed b Ishaaq (author of Seeratun Nabuwwat) has recorded more than 80 couplets long poetry of Hazrat Abu Talib (A.S) in praise of holy Prophet (SAW). 

This was composed when Mecca was under a severe famine. People approached Abu Talib (A.S) as he was Shaikh al Bat’ha and their leader. Abu Talib (A.S) requested the holy Prophet (SAW) to pray for rains and when it rained he praised the holy Prophet (SAW) in the following words:  

“O Muhammad! Looking at your luminous face, raindrops fall. Your merciful existence is a refuge for the helpless orphan and a protection for the modesty and chastity of widows.” 

 Abu Talib (A.S) was amongst the greatest of Momins. He was chosen by Allah (SWT) to protect the holy Prophet (SAW), which is a great honour in itself. He was the main support to the holy Prophet (SAW) and laid the foundation of ‘Kalema’ during the formative years of Islam. And Allah (SWT) has accepted his services and rewarded him immensely by making the pious progeny of the holy Prophet (SAW); piety of which is testified by Quran (Surah-e-Ahzab, ayah 33), as the Progeny of Abu Talib (A.S).

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Kulle Imaan

Meticulous financial accounting and planning ensures that the said organization grows boundlessly. If companies don’t pay attention to their financials and don’t keep the accounting in order, most of the time they wouldn’t grow and chances are that they might have to close down. Thus the financial planning and management is the backbone of any organization.

Most of the companies take services of reputed Chartered Accountants (CA) for proper guidance in the field of financial accounting and other related activities. These CAs are the most powerful in the organization after the chairman, as they know every minutest financial details of the company.

One of my students recently sent me a mail along with his biodata, requesting me to put forward his candidature to a reputed CA for internship. He claimed that under the guidance of such a CA he would hone his skills of accountancy and create his own reputation in the industry.

 Proper financial accounting and planning is the backbone for any company to survive and grow in the competitive market. This makes CAs most sought after by many companies as they help them strengthen their financial backbone.

Like any organization even Islam is a vast religion and hence in this article we will try to find out the backbone of our religion and the steps we should take to strengthen it. We will start our journey with the following ayah:

•“Arab ke dehati kehte hai ke hum imaan laye ae Rasool (SAW) tum kehdo ke tum imaan nahi laaye balke yun kehdo ke Islam laaye haanlake imaan ka abhi tak tumhare dilon se guzar hua hi nahin….” – (Surah-e-Al-Hujuraat, ayah 14)

“(The Bedouin say, “We have attained to faith.” Say [unto them, O Muhammad]: “You have not [yet] attained to faith; you should [rather] say, ‘We have [outwardly] surrendered’ - for [true] faith has not yet entered your hearts….)”

There is a difference in claiming to have accepted Islam as a religion and in being a true believer. A believer’s heart is filled with faith and he submits himself for the cause of religion. Thus ‘Imaan’ (faith) is the backbone of Islam and if it is lost everything is lost. It is hence important to hold the faith in every situation and strengthen it.

Let us see the following ayah:

•“Yeh log Khuda ko chhod kar aisi cheez ki parastish karte hai jo na unn ko nuuksaan hi pahoncha sakti hai aur na nafa’ aur kehte hai ke Khuda hi ke haan yehi log hamare sifarashi honge. (Ae Rasool (SAW)) tum unn se kaho to kya tum Khuda ko aisi cheez ki khabar dete ho jis ko Woh na to aasmanon main kahin paata hai aur na zameen main. Yeh log jis cheez ko uss ka sharik banate hai uss se Woh Paak Saaf aur Bartar hai. – (Surah-e-Yunus, ayah 18)

“(They worship those besides God who cannot do them harm or bring them gain, and say: "These are our intercessors with God." Say: "Do you want to inform God of things in the heavens and the earth He does not know?" Glorious is He, and too Exalted for what they associate with Him!)”

The above ayah mentions a certain section of people who worship those who are not associated with Allah (SWT) and claim that they are the intercessors with Allah (SWT). And Allah (SWT) considers it as ‘Shirk’.

From this we can infer that the intercessors (Wasila) must be closely associated with Allah (SWT); and seeking and asking from those who are not the chosen intercessors is ‘Shirk’. Hence asking from the chosen intercession is asking from Allah (SWT) Himself. So wouldn’t rejecting them lead to ‘Kufr’?

This makes it important to identify the appointed intercession so that we remain free of ‘Shirk’ and ‘Kufr’. One more ayah to go further in this direction:

•“Momineen momineen ko chhod ke kafiron ko apna wali (sarparast) na banaaye. Aur jo aisa karega to use Khuda se kuch sarokar nahin magar (iss qism ki tadbiron se) kisi tarah unn (ke shar) se bachna ho to (khair) aur Khuda tumko Apne hi se darata hai aur Khuda hi ki taraf laut kar jana hai” – (Surah-e-Aale Imran, 28)

“(Let not the believers take the non-believers for wali (guardian) rather than believers; and whoever does this, he shall have nothing of (the guardianship of) Allah, but you should guard yourselves against them, guarding carefully; and Allah makes you cautious of (retribution from) Himself; and to Allah is the eventual coming.)”

The message is very clear and straight. A believer should take a believer as his guardian (Wali) but instead if he takes the non-believer as his ‘Wali’, he would not be under the guardianship of Allah. It thus becomes mandatory to identify the right ‘Wali’ and follow him to be under the guardianship of Allah. So who is this ‘Wali’?

The following ayah would throw some more light on this:

•“Aur (Ae Rasool (SAW)) tum kehdo ke tum log apne apne kaam kiye jaao abhi to Khuda aur uss ka Rasool (SAW) aur Momineen tumhare kaamon ko dekhenge aur bahot jald (Qayamat main) zaahir wa baatin ke jannewale (Khuda) ki taraf lautaye jaoge tab Woh jo kuch bhi tum karte the tumhain bata dega.” – (Surah-e-Tauba, ayah 105)

“(Say, ‘Do as you will. God will watch your conduct and so will His Messenger and the believers. Soon you will be brought back to Him who knows what is hidden and what is manifest: then He will show you the truth of all that you have done.)”

So there are 3 who watch our conduct: Allah – The Greatest, Holy Prophet (SAW) – The Greatest Messenger and a Believer. We all are believers, but you can’t say what I did this morning neither do I know what you have done. We don’t have powers to see and watch each other’s conduct. Thus the appointed Wali (guardian) above us is the Greatest ‘Wali’ and has been given divine powers by the Almighty Allah to watch our conduct. And we would be made accountable to him along with Allah (SWT) and the Holy Prophet (SAW), when we are brought back to The Almighty Allah.

And we find the following ayah which announces the ‘Greatest Wali’:

•“Ae Rasool jo hukm tumhare Parvardigar ki taraf se tum per naazil kiya gaya hai pahoncha do. Aur agar tum ne aisa nahin kiya to samjhlo tum ne Uss ka koi paigham hi nahin pahonchaya aur tum daro nahin Khuda tum ko logon ke shar se mahfooz rakhe gaa aur Khuda hargiz kafiron ki qaum ko manzil e maqsood tak nahin pahonchata.” – ( Surah-e-Maida, ayah 67)

(“O Apostle! deliver what has been revealed to you from your Lord; and if you do it not, then you have not delivered His message, and Allah will protect you from the people; surely Allah will not guide the non-believing people.”)

After the revelation of the above ayah, in front of the huge crowd of around 120000 pilgrims, the Holy Prophet (pbuh) raised Hazrat Ali (A.S) and announced “Man Kunto Mawla ho fa hazaa Ali un Mawla” at Ghadeer-e-Khum. And with this Allah (SWT) appointed Hazrat Ali as Prophet (SAW)’s successor and ‘Wali’ (Guardian) over the ummah. (Ref: Durr-e-Mansoor, Vol 2, P 298, Egypt, Tafseer-e-Fatah ul Qadeer, Vol 2, P 60, Egypt, Tafseer-e-Fatah ul Bayun, Vol 3, P 89, Egypt, Tafseer Mazhari, Vol 3, P 353, Daarul Isha’t Karachi, Sawaiq e Mohraika, P 40 & 120, Sunan e Tirmidhi, Vol 2, P 298 and many more)

Now let us focus on the above ayah and try to find few meaningful inferences. The ayah clearly states that if the message was not delivered by the Holy Prophet (SAW) it was as if no message of Allah (SWT) was ever delivered by him (SAW). Thus Allah (SWT) holds this message as important as Messengership of the Holy Prophet (SAW) itself. Again this message was delivered in front of pilgrims of Hajj and they were all devout Muslims and there was not a single nonbeliever in the crowd, then why did Allah (SWT) say that He will not guide the nonbelievers? Thus rejecting the message of ‘Man Kunto Mawla…” is a ‘Kufr’ and whoever rejects it turns ‘Kafir’ even if he is a Hajj performing, devout Muslim. Lastly with appointment of Mawla Ali (A.S) as the leader over us, Allah conveyed that only He appoints guardians and we don’t have any right in this regard.

Let us see what few of the prominent Islamic scholars have to say about the Ghadeer Declaration:

•Dr. Tahir ul Qadri in ‘The Ghadir Declaration’ page 80 narrates the following tradition:

It is narrated by Ali (A.S) himself. He said ‘On the day of Ghadeer Khum, the holy Prophet (pbuh) had a turban tied round my head (as a symbol of honour) and let the loose end hand down at the back. Then he said: The angels whom Allah (SWT) had sent to help me at Badr and Hunayn were wearing turbans of the same kind. He then added: surely the turban differentiates between belief and disbelief.”

• This tradition is narrated by several other books as well (Ref: Ibn Athir, Asad-ul-ghabah fi ma’rifat-is-sahabah (3:170), Muhib Tabari, ar-Riyad-un-nadrah fi manaqib-il-‘ashrah (3:194) and more)

And Allah (SWT) confirms our above inferences by revealing the following ayah just after the announcement of “Man Kunto Mawla…”

•“Aaj Maine tumhare deen 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.)

Hazrat Abu Sa’eed al-Khidri has narrated that this verse descended upon the Holy Prophet (SAW) on the day of Ghadeer-e-Khum when he declared that Ali was the leader of whomever he was leader. Abu Hurairah has also narrated it and further said that it was revealed on 18th of the month of Dhil Hajj when the holy Prophet (SAW) returned from Hajj al Widah (the last pilgrimage). (Ref: Tafseer Ibn Katheer, Vol 2, P 14, Egypt, Tafseer Durr e Mansoor, Vol 2, P 259, Egypt).

Thus our religion is perfected only after accepting Hazrat Ali (A.S) as a Guardian and a ‘Wali’. Without his love, religion remains imperfect and hence love for him is the backbone of faith. That is why the holy Prophet (SAW) has often referred him as ‘Kulle Imaan.’

Again from the ayah no. 67 of Surah-e-Maeda, we saw that without the successful deliverance of the message of “Man Kunto Mawla…,” the mission of the Prophethood of our Greatest Prophet (SAW) was incomplete. Does the same hold true for other Prophets?

•“(Aur Ae Rasool (SAW) wo waqt bhi yaad dilao)) jab Khuda ne paighambaron se iqraar liya ki Hum tumko jo kuch kitab aur hikmat (waghaira) dein usske baad tumhare paas koi Rasool aaye aur jo kitab tumhare paas hai usski tasdiq kare, to (dekho) tum zaroor uss per imaan lana aur zaroor usski madad karna, (aur) Khuda ne farmaya kya tum ne iqraar liya, tum ne (Mere ahad ka) bojh uthaliya, sab ne arz ki humne iqraar kiya, Irshad hua (achha) to aaj ke qawl (wa qaraar) ke aapas main ek doosre ke gawah rehna.” – (Surah-e-Aale Imran, ayah 81)

“(And when Allah made a covenant through the prophets: Certainly what I have given you of Book and wisdom-- then an messenger comes to you verifying that which is with you, you must believe in him, and you must aid him. He said: Do you affirm and accept My compact in this (matter)? They said: We do affirm. He said: Then bear witness, and I (too) am of the bearers of witness with you.)”

Here, in the above ayah the covenant that Allah (SWT) took from the prophets was of the ‘Wilayat’ of Hazrat Ali (A.S). (Ref: Bisaar-ad-dahrajaat al-Jazahir thaani, pg 93). We also find similar references in various other prominent books:

•Allama Nishapoori has reported the following Hadith of Holy Prophet (SAW) narrated by Abdullah Ibn e Mas’ud in his Tafseer-e-Gharaib al Quran Vol 25:

“When the Chief of Prophets (pbuh) led the prayers and the other Prophets prayed behind him, an Angel descended and said “O Beloved of Allah! Ask these apostles of Allah on what condition they were granted Prophethood.” The Holy Prophet (pbuh) got the following reply when he posed the same question to all other Prophets “That we accept the Wilayat of you and Ali”. (Ref: Tafseer e Gharaib al Quran Vol 25 P 58 published in Egypt (On the border of Tafseer e Ibn e Jareer Tabari)

•In Lisan al Meezan Vol 5 Page 147, Ibn Hajr al Asqalani while writing on ‘Mohammed bin Hameed’ narrates the following from him:

…Hisham bin Abdul Malik summoned from Hejaz to Syria. In a place called Balk I observed something scrawled on a black mountain. When I reached ‘Amr’ I asked if anyone could read what was on the mountain. I was told of an elderly man and I took him to the mountain and showed him the words. He read them, became surprised and said ‘Bring me something so that I can translate it for you.’ I brought something and he translated from the Hebrew:

“There is only One true God, Mohammed is His Messenger, Ali is His ‘Wali’. These words have been written by Musa (A.S) bin Imran.”

An aspiring CA sought the internship with a reputed CA so that his financial knowledge, skills and knowhow increases manifolds and he can create his own reputation as a financial expert. We had used this analogy during the introductory section of this article. In this light let us see what happens to those who seek nearness to Hazrat Ali (A.S) – The Greatest ‘Wali’?

•“Aagaah raho uss main shak nahin ke Auliya e Allah (dost) per (qayamat main) na koi khauf hoga aur na wo aazoorda khatir honge.” - (Surah-e-Yunus, ayah 62)

“(Behold! verily on the Auliya (friends) of Allah there is no fear, nor shall they grieve)

The word ‘Wali’ or ‘Auliya’ used in various ayahs which we referred up till now was to mean ‘Guardian’ over us, which we did prove by reflecting over ayahs and other authentic references; While in the above ayah ‘Auliya e Allah” means friends of Allah for whom there would not be any fear or grief. Now without Mawla Ali (A.S) the faith remains incomplete, hence the ‘Auliya’ of Allah need to be guided by Mawla Ali (A.S) to reach that rank. We will establish this association of ‘Auliya’ with Mawla Ali (A.S) with the help of few references and ayah from the holy Quran.

Farman Ali Saheb in the footnote of his Urdu translation of the Holy Quran, while referring to the above ayah writes:

•“There are various ahadith mentioning presence of certain people in this world, whose silence is ‘Zikr’ and when they speak that is wisdom. Had there been no fixed time for death, their souls would have left their bodies either in fear of punishment or in want of happiness. They are good in conduct and don’t associate themselves with things that are ‘Haram’. They are not concerned with worldly matters and earn ‘Halal’ livelihood and spend on good deeds. They are such that even ‘Ambiya’ and ‘Shaheed’ would be awed by them.”

Dr. Tahir ul Qadri in his Ghadeer Declaration writes on the ‘Wilayat' of Mawla Ali (A.S):

•“The gist of the discussion is that the Prophet’s declaration at Ghadeer Khum proved forever that Ali’s spiritual sovereignty is in fact the Prophet Mohammed’s spiritual sovereignty. Though the door of Prophethood was closed after the Holy Prophet (SAW), Allah opened new avenues for the continuation of the Prophet’s blessings till the Day of Judgment. Some of these avenues were manifest, while others hidden. The hidden avenue led to spiritual sovereignty and Ali al-Murtuza (A.S) was the first person to hold this office. Then this chain of sovereignty passed down to his progeny and finally to the twelve Imams. During this period, many leaders appeared on the spiritual horizon but they all, directly or indirectly, expressed their allegiance to Ali al-Murtuza (A.S). No one was disaffiliated from him and this chain will continue upto the Day of Judgment until the appearance of the last Imam, and he will be Imam Mohammed Mahdi (A.S), the twelfth Imam and the last caliph. (Ref: The Ghadir Declaration, P 15 & 16, Dr. Tahir ul Qadri)

Qazi Mazhari in the second volume of his Tafseer e Mazhari declares Mawla Ali (A.S) as “Qutb e Wilayat” he writes:

“Ali was the Pivotal point of all the virtues and attributes of Wilayat: The Qutb of Wilayat; All auliya, including the Sahaba were in the rear and subordinate to him in this regard.” (Ref: Tafseer e Mazhari, Vol 6 P 20, published by Daar ul Isha’t Karachi.)

Allama Ibne Hajr Makki in his book Sawaiqe Mohraika has reported from Hazrat Umar:

•He said: “Get to know! No honour reaches the position of excellence without acceptance of Ali as the ‘Wali’ (Guardian). (Ref: Sawaiq e Mohraika, P 176, Egypt)

And Allah (SWT) says in Holy Quran:

•“Ae Imaandaro tumhare wali (malik sarparast) to buss yehi hein Khuda aur uss ka Rasool (SAW) aur wo 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-Maeda, Ayah 55-56)

“(Verily your wali (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 prayer. 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.)”

The above verse was revealed when Mawla Ali gave his ring to a beggar while bowing down in ‘ruku’ (Ref: Imam Nasai in Saheeh-e-Nasai, Aljam’a Bain-ul-Sihah-ul-Sittah, Sa’labi)

Thus Allah (SWT) in the above ayahs confirms that it is Mawla Ali (A.S) along with Allah Himself and the Holy Prophet (SAW), as our Guardians and ‘Wali’ and we need to follow him to be in the triumphant party of Allah.

Now if we relate the above ayahs of Surah-e-Maeda with the ayah of Surah-e-Tauba (ayah no. 105) which says that – Allah (SWT), the Holy Prophet (SAW) and Believers watch our conduct, it is clear that the Believer so mentioned in that ayah is the same is our Guardian Mawla Ali (A.S). He has been given Divine Powers to watch our conduct and we would be made accountable to him along with Allah (SWT) and the holy Prophet (pbuh). That is why the Holy Prophet has said in the following hadith that:

•"O Ali, you are the divider of Heaven and Hell" (Ref: Sawaiq-e-Mohraika, P 126, Yanabe-ul-mowaddat, vol 1 P 163)

While referring to Mawla Ali (A.S) the above ayahs have used a plural form as ‘wo momineen’ or ‘those who believe’. Prominent Islamic scholars have given following explanation for this:

•Allama al-Tabarsi, while commenting on this verse in Majma’-al-Bayan states: “The plural form has been used for Ali, Commander of the faithful, in order to express his honour and eminence.”

•Allama al-Zamakshari in his Tafsir al-Kashshaf writes “If you inquire how this plural word is applicable to Ali, may Allah be gracious to him, who is an individual, I shall say that though this verse is about Ali, an individual, the plural form is used in order to persuade others to act similarly and to give alms as readily as Ali did. There is also an implied instruction that the faithful should keep themselves always on the look out for occasions of acts of sympathy, benevolence and charity to the poor and the needy, and readily do the needful without waiting till the completion of even so important a duty as saying a prayer.” (Ref: Tafsir al-Kashshaf, by al-Zamakhshari, v1, p649)

Mawla Ali (A.S) is the Greatest ‘Wali’, his guidance and guardianship ensures that a faithful reaches to the rank of ‘Auliya’ as it is his love which completes the faith and it is a license to enter the triumphant party of Allah (SWT). He is definitely ‘Ameer ul Momineen’.

After mentioning the ayah from Surah-e-Yunus (ayah no. 18) we had inferred that the intercessor is chosen by Allah (SWT) Himself and if we seek from anyone else it would be considered as ‘Shirk’, we had further inferred that then if the chosen intercessor is rejected it would lead to ‘Kufr’. We would establish this now. Let us find out what Allah (SWT) has to say about intercession.

•“Aur Jis shakhs ke liye wo ijaazat ata farmaye
uske siva kissi ki sifarish us ki bargaah main kaam na aayegi.”- (Surah-e-Saba, ayah 23)

"(No intercession can avail in His Presence, except for those for whom He has granted permission)”

Apart from the chosen ones
of Allah (SWT) who have got His permission no intercession would be beneficial to the Ummah. Yes, intercession does work but the authority has been given to few chosen servants of Allah (SWT). As the following ayah says:

•“Aur logon main se Khuda ke bande kuch aise hai jo Khuda ki (khushnudi) haasil karne ki gharaz se apni jaan tak bech daalte hai aur Khuda aise bandon per bada hi shafkat 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 describes the act of an ardent servant of Allah (SWT), who was ready to sacrifice his life for the Almighty Allah’s cause. This sacrificial act of him got its due appreciation by way of getting Allah’s Pleasure and thus His Permission.

Imam Ghizali in his Tareekh e Khamees writes that the above ayah of Surah-e-Baqra was revealed mentioning the sacrifice of Mawla Ali (A.S), when he slept on the bed of the Holy Prophet (SAW) during the night of ‘Hijrat.’ Similar tradition is also mentioned by Imam Hakim on the authority of Ibn-e-Abbas in his Mustadrak. (Ref: Tareekh e Khamees, Imam Ghizali, Mustadrak, Vol 3 Page 4, Imam Hakim).

Thus Mawla Ali’s ardent love and affection for the Holy Prophet (SAW) and Islam made Allah (SWT) grant him with His Pleasure and appointed Mawla Ali (A.S) as chosen intercession along with the Holy Prophet (SAW) above us.

Let us also establish now whether this chosen intercession if rejected leads to ‘Kufr’?

•“Khuda ko chhod kar jin ki parastish karte hain unko sabko ikattha karo phir unhain Jahannum ki raah dekhao aur haan zara unhain thehrao to un se kuch poochna hai.” – (Surah-e-Sa’affat, ayah 23-24)

“(Gather together those who were unjust and their associates, and what they used to worship besides Allah, and lead them to the Way to the (Fierce) Fire! “But stop them, for they must be asked.)”

In our day to day life whenever we cross the path with disobedient people we ignore them and move ahead. And a place for a disobedient ‘Kafir’ is Hell, but here in the above ayah Allah (SWT) still wants to ask them something specific. The thing which Allah (SWT) wants to ask hence is as important as worshipping Allah (SWT) as One without any ‘Sharik’. Thus it can be inferred that if whatever Allah (SWT) is asking from them is not fulfilled He would consider them a greater ‘Kafir’

Abu Saeed Khudri on the authority of Ibn-e-Abbas has quoted a tradition that Rasool (SAW) has said that on the day of Judgment people would be questioned about Wilaya of Ali Ibne Abi Talib and love for him. (Ref: Sawaiqe Mohraiqa P 503, Allama Ibn-e-Hajar, Riyadh al Nadira Volume 2 page 116, Mohib Tabari).

Shah Ismail Shaheed
of the Deobandi Movement in his Mansab e Imamat says: “Imam has such authority in this world and the next that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) had said ‘Don’t I have more rights over the people than they have over themselves, to which the people replied in affirmative. The Prophet then said ‘Of whomsoever I am Mawla, Ali is his Mawla.’ And this is why Allah says in the Quran that on the Day of Judgment you will be summoned with your Imam and questioned (Surah-e-Sa’afat) and the Prophet said that we will be asked about the Wilayat of Ali.” (Ref: Mansab-e-Imamat, Page 109-110, Shah Ismail Shaheed).

Thus rejecting Mawla Ali (A.S) as Guardian and intercession is as bad as ‘Kufr’.

But we being the ardent lovers and followers of Mawla Ali (A.S) need not worry as Allah (SWT) promises us:

•“Phir (nuzool e azaab ke waqt) Hum Apne Rasoolon ko aur jo Imaan laye unnko (azaab se) nalwa bacha lete hein yunhi Hum per laazim hai ke Hum Imaan lane walon ko bhi bachalein.” – (Surah-e-Yunus, ayah 103)

“(Then We shall save Our messengers and those who believe. Thus We have made it incumbent upon Ourself to save the believers.)

Allah (SWT) has promised to save all the believers. A person is a ‘Momin’ when he is under the guardianship of Ameer ul Momineen – Mawla Ali (A.S), thus his love is access to Allah’s Help and Protective Care and hence Mawla Ali is “MushkilKusha”.

That is why the holy Prophet (pbuh) has certified that:

•“Followers of Ali would surely succeed” – (Ref: Yanabe-ul-mowaddat, vol 2 P 312, Kareeb Minal lafaz fi tazkirtul khawaas, P 56)

So what are we waiting for? let us say “Ya Ali Madad”.