The major difference between the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah and their Shia brothers is the doctrine of Imamah. The articles below will show that the concept of Imamah is the negation of the central tenet of Islam–namely that Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] is the seal of the Prophets.For hundreds of years, the Shia scholars have not been able to answer the “Quran Challenge.” The Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah has repeatedly challenged the Shia to produce even one single verse in the Quran that outlines the Shia concept of Imamah.
- The Quran Challenge
- The Quran Challenge, Part II
- The Quran Challenge, Part III:
- The Quran Challenge, Part IV
- Shi’ism is Kufr: Imams Superior to Prophets
- Infallibility = Shirk
- Imamah and Shirk
- Imam Knows the Hour of His Death
- Imams Can See Al-Ghaib (the Unseen)
- Al-Kafi or Al-Kufr?
- Ayatollah Khomeini
- Imamah: the Antithesis of Egalatarianism
- Turbulent History of Imamah
- Fraudulent Representatives of the Hidden Imam
- How Does the Current Imam Lead the Shia?
- Some Questions for the Shia
- Let’s Say That I Wanted to Convert to Shi’ism…
- The 12th Imam of the Shia is Dajjal?
- Fatwa: Ayatollah Khomeini is not Muslim
- Reply to Email: Were Ali, Hasan, and Hussain Lying?
- Quran (13:7): Not a Proof for Imamah
In Part I, we challenged the Shia to produce even a single verse in the Quran that proved their doctrine of Imamah. After miserably failing at this task, there were many “cop-out” semi-responses to our challenge. We shall address them here, and it will become abundantly clear to the unbiased reader that the weakness of the Shia responses is indicative of the baseness of the belief in Imamah.
In this article, we examine every single time the word “imam” is used in the Quran. We find that the Quran does not mention the Infallible Imams of the Shia in any way, shape, or form. This article proves that the Shia can never answer The Quran Challenge.
- The Quran Challenge, Part IV
This article continues from where we left off in our earlier articles entitled “The Quran Challenge.” We have already discussed how important Imamah is to the Shia, and how they view it as more important than Prophethood/Messengership. And we have also seen how the doctrine of Imamah is not referred to in the Quran at all. Now we compare this with the plethora of verses in the Quran which discuss Prophethood/Messengership. Whereas the Quran talks about many Prophets/Messengers, we fail to see any discussion of mysterious Imams. The obvious question is why would Allah mention Prophethood/Messengership so many times in the Quran, but fail to mention Imams, which–according to the Shia–are more important than the Prophets/Messengers?
In this article, we prove that the Shia believe their Imams to be superior to Prophets, and we do this from their own sources. We then explain the danger of this belief, and how it is clearly Kufr (disbelief). This article shatters the prevailing misconception that the differences between Sunni and Shia are minor.
The Christians ascribe Allah’s Attributes to Isa (عليه السلام). Likewise, the Shia ascribe Allah’s Attributes to the Imams. The Shia believe in the Infallibility (Ismah) of Imams. In this article, we will examine what exactly Infallibility (Ismah) means to the Shia and why the rightly guided Ahlus Sunnah considers this belief of the Shia to be Shirk.
- Imamah and Shirk
The Shia have exalted their Imams to a level of Shirk, granting them powers, abilities, and qualities only befitting of Allah Almighty. This article is only the tip of the iceberg, but it is a good insight into the manner in which the Shia exalt their Imams and commit Shirk in the process. Included are Shia Hadith pertinent to the matter.
- Imam Knows the Hour of His Death
The Shia believe that the Imams know when they are going to die and die only by their own will. This contradicts the Islamic belief, for not even the Prophet Muhammad (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) knew when he was going to die, and he definitely did not do so out of his own control. It is a fundamental belief in Islam that nobody knows when they are going to die and nobody has any control over it save Allah Almighty.
- Imams Can See Al-Ghaib (the Unseen)
The Shia believe that their Infallible Imams posses knowledge of Al-Ghaib (the Unseen). This belief is a complete contradiction of the numerous Quranic verses which categorically prohibit the knowledge of Al-Ghaib. This exaggeration and exaltation of their Imams is Kufr.
- Al-Kafi or Al-Kufr?
The most reliable Shia book of Hadith is Al-Kafi. In it, we find narration after narration about Imamah, and we shall herein examine some of the troubling Shia Hadith. The Shia have gone away from the Quran and instead they derive their faith from the sayings of their Imams (i.e. Hadith including Al-Kafi).
- Ayatollah Khomeini
Ayatollah Khomeini and the rest of the Shia Ayatollahs exploit the teachings of Shi’ism in order to further their own power and status. The Ayatollahs elaborate on the concept of Infallible Imams, and by doing so, they indirectly boost their own position and status since they are the interim Imams. This article explores the concept of Wilayat ul-Faqih.
- Imamah: the Antithesis of Egalatarianism
The idea that one lineage is superior to another runs contrary to the egalatarian spirit of Islam. The leadership of the Muslims cannot be confined to one family as the Shia claim it is, but rather it is open to any Muslim, namely the one who is most pious, regardless of his familial descent of which he had no control whatsoever.
- Turbulent History of Imamah
In this article, we explore the history of Imamah, and we find that after the death of each of their Imams, the Shia split into more and more sects. Each sect took a different person to be the successor to the dead Imam. The Shia criticize the Ahlus Sunnah for not following the Imam, but they themselves cannot decide upon who is the Imam!
- Fraudulent Representatives of the Hidden Imam
When the 12th Imam supposedly went into occultation, various Shia leaders self-proclaimed themselves as representatives of the Hidden Imam in his absence. They began collecting Khums (religious tax) in the name of the Hidden Imam. This article explores this fraud.
- How Does the Current Imam Lead the Shia?
The occultation of the Imam is 100% in variance with the very basis of the reason the Shia claim we need an Imam. The Shia belief is in fact not self consistent. On the one hand, the very reason we need an Imam is to lead, but now the Imam has been in occultation, so what benefit does the Imam give now?
- Some Questions for the Shia
Imamah is the foundation of Shi’ism; the Ahlus Sunnah rejects Imamah because the doctrine makes little logical sense. Indeed, there are many perplexing questions for the Shia as well as several holes in the doctrine of Imamah. In this article, we put to the test the doctrine of Imamah and see how it measures up in the light of logic.
- Let’s Say That I Wanted to Convert to Shi’ism…
In this article, the author presents the hypothetical scenario that he becomes convinced that we need to follow Infallible Imams and that he wants to convert to Shi’ism. The question then presents itself: which of the dozens upon dozens of Shia sects should he follow? Which chain of Imams is the correct one? This dilemma underscores the invalidity of the Imamah doctrine.
- The 12th Imam of the Shia is Dajjal?
The Shia are waiting for their Twelvth Imam to descend upon them. The evidence suggests that the person that the Shia will take as their Twelvth Imam will be none other than Dajjal, as prophecized in the Hadith of the Prophet. The Ahlus Sunnah should thus always keep in mind that the Shia are the future followers of Dajjal.
- Fatwa: Ayatollah Khomeini is not Muslim
This is a fatwa passed by Shaykh al-Albaanee, in regards to “Ayatollah” Khomeini and his Kufr (disbelief). It is Kufr (disbelief) to say that there exists anyone superior to the Prophets and Messengers, such as the Shia say of their Infallible Imams. It is therefore the ruling of the scholars that such a person is not a Muslim and outside the folds of Islam.
- Reply to Email: Were Ali, Hasan, and Hussain Lying?
This was in response to an email query sent to us by a brother named John. We decided to make our reply public in case it should help any others as well. May Allah guide Brother John and us to Truth!
- Quran (13:7): Not a Proof for Imamah
The Shia are unable to find proof in the Quran for their errant belief in the doctrine known as Imamah. Having completely failed to bring forth even one singular verse, the Shia propagandists have resorted to desperation, finding absolutely any verse that can somehow be understood to mean their Twelve Imams. In this article, we examine the Quranic verse 13:7 and why it does not at all refer to the Imams of the Shia.
THE INFALLIBLE IMAMATE
“He is the One Who has revealed to you the Book.
Some of its verses are decisive - they are the foundation of
the Book – while others are allegorical. Those whose hearts are infected
with disbelief follow the allegorical part to mislead others and to give it their
own interpretation, seeking for its hidden meanings, but no one knows its hidden
meanings except Allah. Those who are well grounded in knowledge say: "We believe in it;
it is all from our Lord." None will take heed except the people of understanding.”(Qur’an;3:7)
Part 2/4: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oGKIJl1s4OM&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL
The Doctrine of Infallible Imamate In Shi’a Islam:
Imamah is one of the core beliefs of Shiite Islam, which separates Shiites from other sect of Muslims. Imamah is the belief that, in every time and place, there must be an infallible, divinely appointed guide who preserves the religion exactly as it was revealed by the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). The person who bears the duty of guarding and preserving the Divine message after it is revealed and is chosen by God for this function is called the Imam, in the same way that the person who bears the prophetic spirit and has the function of receiving Divine injunctions and laws from God is called the Prophet. It is possible for the Imamate and Prophecy (Nubuwwat) either to be joined in one person or to be separate.
Islam takes into consideration and gives directives concerning all aspects of the life of all men. It investigates human life from the spiritual point of view and guides man accordingly, and it intervenes on the plane of formal and material existence from the point of view of the life of the individual. In the same way it intervenes on the plane of social life and its regulation (i.e., on the plane of government). Thus the Imamate and religious leadership in Islam may be studied from three different perspectives: from the perspective of Islamic government, of Islamic sciences and injunctions, and of leadership and innovative guidance in the spiritual life. Shi’aism believes that since Islamic society is in dire need of guidance in each of these three aspects, the person who occupies the function of giving that guidance and is the leader of the community in these areas of religious concern must be appointed by God and the Prophet. Naturally, the Prophet himself was also appointed by Divine Command.
Shi’as believe that whoever follows Imams, will not fall into error and will reach true felicity ; that is, the members of the Household are free from error and sin and are inerrant. From this it can be concluded that by "Members of the Household" and "progeny" is not meant all the descendants and relatives of the Prophet. Rather, specific individuals are meant who are perfect in the religious sciences and are protected against error and sin so that they are qualified to guide and lead men. For Shi’aism these individuals consist of Ali ibn Abi Talib and his eleven descendants who were chosen to the Imamate one after another.
Sainthood In Abrahamic Faiths :
The roots of imamate may be traced with the institution of Saints in Judeo-Christian traditions. Sainthood implies a special type of relationship to the Holy, a relationship that is not automatically obtained by other religious personages through their performance of religious duties or offices. The existence of saints has been a widespread phenomenon throughout the religions of the world (except early Islam). Saints are persons believed to be connected in a special manner with what is viewed as sacred reality (God), gods, spiritual powers, mythical realms, and other aspects of the sacred or holy. The religious person may have various relationships with the sacred: as seer, prophet, saviour, monk, nun, priest, priestess, or other such personage. In the case of each of these, however, a specific kind of relationship to the holy is involved. Seers, for example, have an inspirational vision of the future; spiritualist also proclaim a revelation; saviours are entrusted with effecting redemption, liberation, or other salvatory conditions; monks and nuns lead religious lives in accordance with ascetic regulations that they generally observe as long as they live. Every one of these religious personages may simultaneously be, or become, a saint, but there is no necessary connection. The significance of saintly personages is generally based on real or alleged deeds and qualities that became apparent during their lifetimes and continue to exert influence after their deaths. The special character of their feats and qualities of living is believed to arise from an especially close association with a deity or sacred power. In addition to such a relationship, sainthood also requires the existence of a sacral institution that can grant such recognition, or of a popular cult that acknowledges and posits a belief in the saint's special qualities. In institutionalized religions, such as Roman Catholicism, there is a regularized process (called canonization) by which saints are officially recognized. Canonization requires, among other things, proof that the person in question wrought miracles during his or her lifetime. On the other hand, folk belief often recognizes the saintly powers of a living or dead person long before the institutional religion acknowledges him as a saint.
The cult of saints in terms of veneration was not a part of the monotheistic religion of
. Saintliness, however, was an ideal that many hoped to exhibit. The model of a pious person is depicted in the righteous one: "his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night." (Psalm;1:2). In the Hellenistic period ( 300 BC- 300 C.E), when many Jews were susceptible to foreign religious influences, the Hasidim (the "pious" ones) segregated themselves from the others, holding fast to the faith of their fathers. The concept of the Hasidim gained new significance in the 18th century when Israel ben Eliezer, called Ba'al Shem Tov, or "Master of the Good Name," started the modern movement called Hasidism. As opposed to the Orthodox Israelite religion with its emphasis on rationalism, cultic piety, and legalism, Ba'al Shem Tov stood for a more mystically oriented form of Judaism. Israel
Jesus and his disciples did not speak of saints; but during the period (1st to early 4th century) in which they were persecuted, Christians began to venerate the martyrs as saints. They believed that the martyrs, being sufferers "unto death" for Christ, were received directly into heaven and could therefore be effective as intercessors for the living. By the 3rd century the veneration of martyr saints was already common. In the Nicene Creed (325 C.E) the early church called itself the "communion of saints." Here, however, the word "saint" has the broader meaning of "believer" rather than being applied strictly to a holy person or numinous personality worthy of veneration. In the 10th century a procedure of canonization (official recognition of a public cult of a saint) was initiated by Pope John XV. Gradually, a fixed process was developed for canonization by the pope, requiring that the person must have led a life of heroic sanctity and performed at least two miracles. Saints in the Roman Catholic Church are venerated, but not worshipped, because of their spiritual and religious significance and are believed to be the bearers of special powers. Because of a belief in the powers of the saints, their relics are regarded as efficacious. In the Eastern Orthodox Church saints also are venerated, but the process of canonization is less juridical and not always ecumenical. In some Protestant churches (Lutheran and Anglican) saints are recognized, but not venerated as in the Roman Catholic and Orthodox.
Islam being a strictly monotheistic faith, severely prohibits any kind of "conjunction" (affiliation, or consortship) to Allah. Thus the concept of sainthood was rejected. Allah says: “We created man, We know the prompting of his soul, and We are closer to him than his jugular vein.”(Qur’an;50:16);“..I'll accept their repentance, for I am the Receiver of Repentance, the Merciful.”(Qur’an;2:160). With the expansion of Islam and conversion of people of diverse faiths and traditions, even here a variegated belief in holy men arose because of the demands of popular religion. Over against the one God who is almighty powerful and whose role as a strict judge was emphasized repeatedly, there emerged a desire for intercessors. These were found in saintly men who were believed to be endowed with charismatic powers (karamat), allowing them to go miraculously from one place to another far away; to wield authority over animals, plants, and clouds; and to bridge the gap between life and death. Despite negation of the existence of saints, the piety of the masses "canonized" holy men while they were still living. After they died, cults of devotion arose at the sites of their graves, and pilgrimages to such sites were believed to aid the believer in acquiring help and blessing.
‘Imam’ in Qur’an:
The primary meanings of Arabic word ‘Imam’ is that of ‘being foremost’. This word has commonly been used in Qur’an in variety of meanings i.e. Leader in religion, Model, pattern, example (Qur’an;2:124), Leaders of Unbelief (plural -a'immah al- kufr, Qur’an;); Book of guidance & instructions (Qur’an;); Book of evidence or record (Qur’an;36:12). The Leader in congregational prayer (salah) is traditionally known as ‘Imam’ (prayer leader). This is further elaborated through quotations of verses from Qur’an:-
Imam-The Leader: The word “imam” and its plural “aim’ah” has been mentioned in Qur’an in the verses: “And remember that Abraham was tried by His Lord with certain commands, which He fulfilled: He said: "I will make Thee an Imam to the Nations." He pleaded: "And also (Imams) from My offspring!" He answered: "But My promise is not within the reach of evil-doers.” (Qur’an;2:124). “And we wished to be gracious to those who were being oppressed (Children of
) In the land (of Israel ), to make them leaders (in Faith) and make them heirs,”.(Qur’an;28:5). Pharaoh wanted to crush the Children of Israel. But Allah's Plan was to protect them as they were weak, and indeed to make them custodians and leaders (a'immah) in His Faith. Leaders or ‘exemplars’ (a'immah, singular Imam) is an allusion to the historical fact that the Hebrews were the first to accept a monotheistic creed in a clear, unequivocal formulation, and thus became the forerunners of both Christianity and Islam. Thus God wanted to give them in inheritance a land "flowing with milk and honey". Here they were established in authority for such time as they followed Allah's Law. As regards Pharaoh and his ministers and hosts, they were to be shown that they would suffer, at the hands of the Israelites, the very calamities against which they were so confidently taking precautions for themselves. Allah says: “We made them (Pharaoh and his companions) leaders who started calling people to hellfire, but on the Day of Judgment they will not get any help.”(Qur’an;28:41). “But if They Violate their oaths after their covenant, and taunt you for your Faith,- Fight ye the Chiefs of Unfaith (a'immah al- kufr) : for their oaths are nothing to them: that Thus They may be restrained.” (Qur’an;). “We gave the Book (Torah) to Moses - so (O Muhammad) be not in doubt for receiving this Book (Qur’an) which meets the same criteria - and We made it (Torah) a guide for the Children of Israel. When they showed patience, We appointed from among them leaders (a'immah, plural of Imam) giving guidance under Our command so long as they continued to have faith in Our revelations.” (Qur’an;32:23-24).The series of Judges, Prophets, and Kings among the Children of Israel continued to give good guidance, in accordance with Allah's Law, as long as the people continued in Faith and Constancy (persevering patience). When that condition ceased, Allah's grace was withdrawn, and the people broke up into wrangling sects and practically suffered national annihilation. Egypt
Imam-The Book of Revelition & Gudiance: Imam has been used to mention the Book of Revelition & Gudiance: “Can They be (like) those who Accept a Clear (sign) from their Lord, and whom a witness from Himself doth teach, As did the Book of Moses (Torah) before it,- a guide (Imam) and a mercy? They (Children of
) believe therein; but those of the Sects that reject it,- the Fire will be their promised meeting-place. (O Muhammad) be not then In doubt thereon: for it (Qur’an) is the truth from Thy Lord: yet many among men do not believe!” (Qur’an;). "Guide": the Arabic word here is Imam, a leader, a guide, one that directs to the true Path. Such a direction is an instance of the Mercy and Goodness of Allah to man. The Qur’an and the Prophet Muhammad are also called, each, a Guide and a Mercy, and so are these epithets applicable to previous Books and Prophets. Israel
Imam-The Book of Record: Imam has also been used to mention the Book of Record: “Verily we shall give life to the dead, and we record that which They send before and that which They leave behind, and of all things have we taken account In a Clear Book (of evidence)”. (Qur’an;36:12). Allah says, on the Day of Judgement : “To us shall return all that He talks of and He shall appear before us bare and alone.” (Qur’an;19:80). “Then shall we certainly drag out from every sect all those who were worst In obstinate rebellion against (Allah) Most Gracious.” (Qur’an;19:69). “One Day we shall call together all human beings with their (respective) Imams, those who are given their record In their right hand will read it (with pleasure), and They will not be dealt with unjustly In the least.” (Qur’an;17:71). Here Imam means: Their Leader(Qur’an;2:124) i.e. their Prophets (to bear witness to his virtues or sins-16:84), or Book of Revelation as guide and a mercy (Qur’an;11:7) or most likely meaning, the Book of Record(Qur’an;36:12). The judgement will be according to : “That man can have nothing but what He strives for;” (Qur’an;53:39). The basic well extremely well authenticated saying of the Prophet, “Actions will be (judged) only according to the conscious intentions (which prompted them); and unto everyone will be accounted only what he consciously intended”, i.e., while doing whatever he did. This Tradition is quoted by Bukhari in seven places- the firsts one as kind of introduction to his Sahih- as well as by Muslim, Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, Nassai (in four places), Ibn Majah, Ibn Hambal, and several other compilations. In this connection it is to be noted that in the ethics of the Qur’an, the term ‘action’ (amal) comprises also a deliberate omission of actions, whether good or bad, as well as deliberate voicing of beliefs, both righteous and sinful: in short, everything that man consciously aims at and expresses by word or deed.
The process of justice is further elaborated: “One Day we shall raise from all Peoples a witness: then no excuse be accepted from Unbelievers, nor will They receive any favours.” (Qur’an;16:84). “Thus, have we made of you (Muslims) a justly balanced community, that ye might be witnesses over the nations, and the Messenger a witness over yourselves..” (Qur’an;2:143). “We have fastened the destiny of every man to his own neck, and on the Day of Judgment We shall bring out for him a book spread wide open,”(Qur’an;17:13). “On no soul do we place a burden greater than it can bear: before us is a record which clearly shows the truth: They will never be wronged.”(23:62). “When the scrolls are laid open;” (Qur’an;81:10).“All that They do is noted In (their) Books (of deeds): Every matter, small and great, is on record.” (Qur’an;54:52-53).“You shall see every nation on its knees. Every nation shall be summoned to its book of record, and Allah will say: "Today you shall be rewarded for your deeds. This book of Ours speaks about you with the truth. Surely We have recorded all your deeds."”(Qur’an;45:28). “And the earth will shine with the glory of its Lord: the record (of deeds) will be placed (open); the prophets and the witnesses will be brought forward and a just decision pronounced between them; and They will not be wronged (in the least)”. (Qur’an;39:69).
Historic Evolution of Concept of Imamate:
The origin and basis of the office of Imam was conceived differently by various sections of the Muslim community, this difference providing part of the political and religious basis for the split into Sunnite and Shi'ite Islam. Among Sunnites, Imam was synonymous with caliph (khalifah), designating the successor of Muhammad (peace be upon him), who assumed his administrative and political, but not religious, functions. He was appointed by men and, although liable to error, was to be obeyed (within the confines of Qur’an and Sunnah) even though he personally sinned, provided he maintained the ordinances of Islam. Imam has also been used as an honorary title, applied to such figures as the caliph 'Ali ibn Abi Talib and the theologians Abu Hanifah, ash-Shafi'i, Malik ibn Anas, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, al-Ghazali, and Muhammad 'Abduh. The title imam also is sometimes given to the specially trained Muslims who lead prayers in the mosques. After 'Ali's death, the Shi’a (Party; i.e., of 'Ali) demanded the restoration of rule to 'Ali's family, and from that demand developed the Shiite legitimism, or the divine right of the holy family to rule. In the early stages, the Shi’a used this legitimism to cover the protest against the Arab hegemony under the Umayyads and to agitate for social reform. Gradually, however, Shi’aism developed a theological content for its political stand. Probably under Gnostic (esoteric, dualistic, and speculative) and old Iranian (dualistic) influences, the figure of the political ruler, the Imam (exemplary "leader"), was transformed into a metaphysical being, a manifestation of God and the primordial light that sustains the universe and bestows true knowledge on man. Through the Imam alone the hidden and true meaning of the Qur’anic revelation can be known, because the Imam alone is infallible. (under Neoplatonic influences of the 9th-10th centuries AD). They alone, and not the general consensus of the community (ijm’a) essential to Sunnite Islam, determined matters of doctrinal importance and interpreted revelation. The Shi’a thus developed a doctrine of esoteric knowledge that was adopted also, in a modified form, by the Sufis, or Islamic mystics. The orthodox Shi’a recognize 12 such Imams, the last (Muhammad) having disappeared in the 9th century. With the historical disappearance (ghaybah) of the last Imam--there has been no consistency in the number legitimized: among the major sects, Sab'iyah Isma'ilis acknowledge seven Imams and Ithna 'Ashari (Twelvers) 12--there arose a belief in the ‘Hidden Imam’, who is identified with the mahdi (literally the guided one). Since that time, the Mujtahids (i.e., the Shi’a divines) have been able to interpret law and doctrine under the putative guidance of the Imam, who will return toward the end of time to fill the world with truth and justice. (Encyclopedia Britannica).
Divinely Appointed, Infallible, Holders of Authority, (ulia al-amr): The Shi’a theologians quote from Qur’an verses: 2:30, 21:73, 4:59 & 4:83 to support their concept of Imamate. An objective analysis of these verses of Qur’an in their proper context and overall teachings of Qur’an would bring out clear picture in perspective.
Allah says: “Behold, Thy Lord said to the angels: "I will create a vicegerent on earth." They said: "Wilt Thou place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood?- whilst we do celebrate Thy praises and glorify Thy holy (name)?" He said: "I know what ye know not.” (Qur’an;). This Verse () is has been intepreted by Shi’a theologians to indicating that the Imams are those who are appointed by God, rather than appointed by )the community throuhg some other form of consultatin. This is seen to be the "tradition" (sunnah) of Allah, of which Allah says in verse 33:62: "You will not find any change in the sunnah of Allah.". Since His tradition (sunnah) does not change, He always appoint the leader of the religion and the religious community. The use of the adjective ja'il, meaning one who places, is also important for Shi'ite scholars in interpreting this verse. When He says "I am He who places..." this indicates that He was not merely just placing a vicegerent in the Earth during the specific incident referred to by this verse (the creation of Adam), but is rather a constant attribute of Allah. He is thereby always appointing His vicegerent, His caliph, notwithstanding the election by the community appointing one ‘khalifa’ for themselves.
Analysis- Verse 2:30 :
The Verse 2:30 in the cotext reads: “It is He who hath created for you all things that are on earth; Moreover His design comprehended the heavens, for He gave order and perfection to the seven firmaments; and of all things He hath perfect knowledge.”(Qur’an;). “Behold, Thy Lord said to the angels: "I will create a vicegerent on earth." They said: "Wilt Thou place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood?- whilst we do celebrate Thy praises and glorify Thy holy (name)?" He said: "I know what ye know not."( Qur’an;). “And He taught Adam the nature of all things; then He placed them before the angels, and said: "Tell me the nature of these if ye are right.”(Qur’an;). “They said: "Glory to thee, of knowledge we have none, save what Thou hast taught us: In truth it is Thou who art perfect In knowledge and wisdom.”( Qur’an;).
Just a simple look at the context of verse 2:30, reveal that, here the creation of earth, heaven and the Adam, symbolising creation of humanity as vicegret of Allah on earth is being narrated. It is not recorded any where in the scriptrue that Adam, as an individual and Messenger of Allah, was himself involved in mischief and bloodshed, feared by angels. It is his progeny, the humaity which is involved in bloodshed.
The term “kahlifah” – is derived formthe verb “khalafa”, “he succeeded (another)” – used in this allegory to denote man’s rightful supremacy on earth, which is most suitably rendered by the expression “he shall inherit the earth” (in the sense of being given possession of it). This is further mentined in verses 6:165, 27:62 and 35:39, where all human beings are spoken of as “khla’if al-ard”: “It is He who hath made you (His) agents, inheritors of the earth: He hath raised you In ranks, some above others: that He may try you In the gifts He hath given you: for Thy Lord is quick In punishment: yet He is indeed Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.”(Qur’an;6:165). “Or, who listens to the (soul) distressed when it calls on him, and who relieves its suffering, and makes you (mankind) inheritors of the earth? (can there be another) god besides Allah. Little it is that ye heed!” (Qur’an;27:62); “He it is that has made you inheritors In the earth: if, then, any do reject ((Allah)), their rejection (works) against themselves: their rejection but adds to the odium for the unbelievers In the sight of their Lord: their rejection but adds to (Their own) undoing.”(Qur’an;35:39)
Allah says: “And we made them leaders, guiding (men) by Our command, and we sent them inspiration to do good deeds, to establish regular prayers, and to practice regular charity; and They constantly served us (and us only).”(Qur’an;21:73). Verse 21:73 is interpreted similarly: "And we made the Imams, guiding by our command." This also is interprted that “the Imams are Divinely appointed figures”. This is, firstly, taken to indicate that the Imams are infallible, as they described as guiding by and in accordance with the command of Allah. The use of the word ‘command’ (a’mr) is also important, for because the "holders of authority", (ulul-al-a’mr), are the "holders of the command" as well(Qur’an;4:59 & 4:83). Hence Imams means: Divinely Appointed, Infallible, Holders of Authority, (ulia al-amr).
To establish the context, verse 21:73 may be read, along with earlier verse 21:72: “And we bestowed on Him Isaac And, As an additional gift, (A grandson), Jacob, and we made righteous men of every one (of them). And we made them leaders, guiding (men) by Our command, and we sent them inspiration to do good deeds, to establish regular prayers, and to practice regular charity; and They constantly served us (and us only).”(Qur’an;21:72-73). The Qur’anic Chapter Number 21, named as ‘The Prophets’ (Surah Al-Anbiyaa) contains a continuous account of many Prophets. The discourse from Verses 51 to 73 is about Abraham whereby he questioned the idol worshiping of his father and his people. Abraham broke all their idols to show, that the ‘idol gods’, who can not even defend themselves, cannot be of any benefit to them. They decided to burn him alive but Allah saved him. Later Abraham was blessed with son Isaac and then a grandson Jacob, Allah made them righteous (Qur’an;21:72) and each of them as Prophet to guide the men as leader (imam) (Qur’an;21:73). All the characteristics mentioned in this discourse (Qur’an;21:72-73) i.e. righteousness, leaders (ai’mmah-plural of Imam), guiding by His command, inspiration to do good deeds, to establish regular prayers, and to practice regular charity, obedient servants of God, are the privileges and honor granted to the Messengers of God, which cannot be interpreted to make them applicable to any other believer. Hence in 21:72-73, ai’mmah-plural of Imam, is used for Prophets as leaders. The chain of Prophethood stands closed, Muhammad being the last Messenger : “Muhammad is not the father of any of your men but (he is) the Apostle of Allah and the Seal of the Prophets: and Allah has full knowledge of all things.”(Qur’an;33;40). Hence after Muhammad there will be no Apostle, (or Imam), because he left the divinely protected Qur’an,(Qur’an;15:9) the last guidance for the humanity (Qur’an;39:41) and his Sunnah, , Allah appointed Muslims as inheritors: “We have given the Book (Qur’an) as an inheritance to those of Our servants (Muslims) whom We have chosen, among them there are some who wrong their own souls, some follow a middle course and some, by Allah's leave, excel in good deeds; which is the supreme virtue.”(Qur’an;35:32).
Islam in fact does not subscribe to the existence of the concept of a chosen people or race for all times, according to Qur’an: “Remember that when Abraham was tested by his Lord with certain commands, he fulfilled them. God said: "Surely, I will make you the leader of mankind." "What about my offspring?" Asked Abraham. "My Covenant," said Allah, "will not apply to the evil doers.”(Qur’an;2:124). Here the claim of the children of
as “Chosen People of God” by only virtue of their decent from Abraham, who was made “a leader of men” by God, has been refuted once read in conjunction with the two preceding verses: “O Children of Israel! Remember the blessings of Mine with which I graced you, and how I favoured over other people. Guard yourselves against the day when one soul shall not avail another, no ransom shall be taken, no intercession shall profit anyone, and no help shall be given.”(Qur’an;2:122-23). Hence God makes it clear that the exalted status of Abraham was not something that would automatically confer a comparable status on this physical descendants, and definitely not on the sinners among them. “This is because they say: "The fire of Hell shall not touch us; even if it does, it will be for a few days In their religion they are deceived by their own self-invented beliefs. What will they do when We will gather them together on the Day which is sure to come, when every soul will be given what it has earned and there shall be no injustice?“(Qur’an;3:24-25). The Prophet (peace be upon him) loved all members of his household (Ahl-al-Bait) but he dispelled any notion of special favours, in the light of Qur’an. Narrated Abu Huraira: When Allah revealed the verse: “Warn your nearest kinsmen,”(Qur’an;26:214), Allah's Apostle got up and said, "O people of Quraish (or said similar words)! Buy (i.e. save) yourselves (from the Hellfire) as I cannot save you from Allah's punishment; O Bani Abd Manaf! I cannot save you from Allah's punishment, O Safiya, the Aunt of Allah's Apostle! I cannot save you from Allah's punishment; O Fatima bint Muhammad! Ask me anything from my wealth, but I cannot save you from Allah's punishment."(Al Bukhari Hadith Number: 4:16). The kinsfolk of Prophet earned the love of all Mulims due to their piety and services to the cause of Islam even at the cost of personel comfort and lives. Israel
The Qur'anic verses 4:59 and 4:83 are taken as an indication that there must always be such a person after the Prophet: “O ye who believe! obey Allah, and obey the Messenger, and those charged with authority among you. if ye differ In anything among yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe In Allah and the Last Day: that is best, and Most suitable for final determination.”(Qur’an;). “When there comes to them some matter touching (Public) safety or fear, They divulge it. if They had only referred it to the Messenger, or to those charged with authority among them, the proper investigators would have tested it from them (direct). were it not for the Grace and Mercy of Allah unto you, all but a few of you would have fallen into the clutches of Satan”(Qur’an;4:83). A number of scholars have observed that even though there are three entitites to whom obedience is made obligatory, there are only actually two commands. The first command is to obey Allah, and the second is to obey the Prophet and the holders of authority from amongst you. This means that obedience to the holders of authority is as obligatory as it is to the Prophet, since they are actually one command. Since the obligation to obey the Prophet is absolute, the obligation to obey the the holders of authority is absolute as well. This indicates that the holders of authority must also be infallible, like the Prophet. For if one were ordered to obey the holders of authority, and the holders of authority were disobeying Allah, then that would amount to Allah ordering a person to disobey Him. Shi'ite scholars have argued that it is impossible to say: "The command to obey the holders of authority is conditioned by their own obedience to the Prophet," since the command is singular here, and something cannot be conditioned by itself. According to this view, the holders of authority must also be sinless, which then brings us back to verse 33:33, which indicates the sinlessness of the Prophets family. They, therefore, must be the ones who are encharged with authority, and obedience to them is the same as obedience to the Prophet.
Indeed, Allah the Exalted has ordered certain obedience to the holders of authority. If anybody's obedience is ordered with clear certainty by Allah, then that person must be infallible from all mistake. If he was not infallible, thent his would mean that Allah would be ordering a person to commit an error. This would mean that a command and a prohibition would be simultaneously united, and this is impossible. Therefore, it is proved that if Allah orders the obedience of any person with certainty, it is necessary that that person be infallible. Therefore, the holders of authority are infallible.
The obedience to Allah and the Prophet can not be equated to obedience to any one else, any such understanding amounts to undermining the exalted status of Allah and His Prophet. Obedience to those “Charged with Authority” has to be with in the bounds of guidance provided by Allah through His Book, The Qur’an and Sunnah of His Prophet. Interpolation or interpretation of only one verse can not be against the over all teachings of Qur’an and Sunnah. If those “Charged with Authority” order for some thing which is against the Will of Allah and Apostle, then it is a matter of difference, for which, in the same verse Allah says: “..if you differ In anything among yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger,..”(Qur’an;). It means that obedience is only with in bounds and guidance of Qur’an and Sunnah.
Even if the command for the “obedience to the Propeht and holders of authority” is assumed as one command, making it obligatory to “obey the Prophet and holders of authority”, there is no dichotomy. In order to ward off possibility of any such interpretation, Allah has specified even obedience to Prophet in right matters (ma’roof): O Prophet! …. that they will not disobey you in what is right (ma’roof), then accept their allegiance..”(Qur’an;60:12). It is obvious that there is no question or possibility that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), would ever be asking for obedience to some thing which is not ‘right (ma’roof)’, but the verse highlights the fact that obedience to any one, including the Apostle is to be only in the right matters (ma’roof). Likewise once Allah says: “O ye who believe! obey Allah, and obey the Messenger, and those charged with authority among you…..”(Qur’an;), it implies that ‘those charged with authority’ (ulul am’r) are also to be obeyed only in ‘what is right’(ma’roof) and not in ‘wrong, evil or prohibited (munkir) matters’.
In times of war or public panic, thoughtless repetition of gossip is rightly restrained by all effective States. If false, such news may cause needless alarm: if true, it may frighten the timid and cause some misgiving even to the bravest, because the counterpart of it-the preparations made to meet the danger-is not known. Thoughtless news, true or false, may also encourage the enemy. In such a situation, Allah instructs: “When there comes to them some matter touching (public) safety or fear they divulge it. If they had only referred it to the Apostle or to those charged with authority among them the proper investigators would have tested it from them (direct). Were it not for the Grace and Mercy of Allah unto you all but a few of you would have fallen into the clutches of Satan.”(Qur’an;4:83). The proper course is quietly to hand all news direct to those who are in a position to investigate it. They can then sift it and take suitable measures to checkmate the enemy. Not to do so, but to deal with news either thoughtlessly or maliciously is to fall directly into the snares of evil. It is evident that instead of using force and violence against Muslim rulers, the use of words, advise and peaceful protest is the preferable option.
In many Hadith Prophet predicted the existence of rulers, who would not be following all the Islamic injunctions in true spirit, he also provided the guidelines and tolerant attitude of Muslim community towards them. (Sahih Muslim Hadith number 861, similar Hadith number 860 has been narrated Abu Sa'id al-Khudri; Sunan of Abu Dawood No.2040; Al Tirmidhi Hadith.102; Sunan of Abu Dawood:179; Sahih Bukhari, Volume 9 Hadith.175 & also 179). Thus in view of verse of Qur’an;60:12 and Hadiths, the whole concept of an Infallible Imam as holder of authority is negated. For the guidance of Muslims and the humanity the Prophet left Qur’an and his Sunnah which has proved true to the trust.
Seal of Prophets & Inheritance of Legacy:
The chain of Prophethood has been closed through divine command, by declaring Muhammad to be the last Prophet and closing his line of inheritance, Allah says: “Muhammad is not the father of any of your men (he is not going to leave any male heirs). He is the Messenger of Allah and the Seal of the Prophets. Allah has the knowledge of all things.”(Qur’an;33:40). With the end of prophethood, the divine revelations, stands closed. Qur’an and Sunnah is available for the guidance of humanity. Hence now there is no rationale of divinely appointed leader (prophet or Imam). The possibility of any one claiming to inherit his legacy on the basis of kinship has also been closed. He only left his daughters, while his sons died in infancy, the Will of Allah. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is in fact spiritual father of whole community of Muslims: “The Prophet is closer to the believers than their own selves and his wives are as their mothers...” (Qur’an;33:6). The mission of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is not restricted to any race or community, his mission is for the whole mankind till eternity : “O Muhammad, We have not sent you but as a blessing for all the worlds.”(Qur’an;21:107).
The Muslims, the spiritual children of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). The prophets do not inherit their property to the kinsfolk: Narrated Urwa: 'Aish’a said, "When Allah's Apostle died, his wives intended to send 'Uthman to Abu Bakr asking him for their share of the inheritance." Then 'Aish’a said to them, "Didn't Allah's Apostle say, 'Our (Apostles') property is not to be inherited, and whatever we leave is to be spent in charity?"(Sahih Bukhari Hadith 8.722). Narrated Aish’a: Fatima and Al'Abbas came to Abu Bakr, claiming their inheritance of the Prophet's
and his share from Khaibar. Abu Bakr said, "I heard the Prophet saying, 'Our property is not inherited, and whatever we leave is to be given in charity. But the family of Muhammad can take their sustenance from this property.' By Allah, I would love to do good to the kith and kin of Allah's Apostle rather than to my own kith and kin." (Sahih Bukhari Hadith 5.368). land of Fadak
Infallibility of Prophets & Kinsfolk:
The prophets are chosen human beings, who are guided, given special knowledge and granted special exalted status by Allah(Qur’an;72:26-27). The are bestowed with knowledge of certainty, (Qur’an;102:5-6, ;102:7, 69:51, 6:75, 17:1). Due to this special knowledge of certainty the Apostles are very firm in their faith. However they continue to remain human and operate with in the ambit of divine laws governing the conduct of human being, although Allah is kind to them, ever ready to help and forgive. The freedom of choice, to over come the temptations of soul and trials further exalt their status. Allah extends His favour to them, as they pray to Him as His humble servants. In their day to day life, as human, at times they do err, but Allah protects them from evil and forgive their errors (as they are not angels). Nevertheless complete divine protection is provided in delivery of Revelations and in conveyance of true message of Allah. They can not commit any error in the maters of Din (faith). Some examples of their trials and errors have been mentioned in Hadith and Qur’an : Adam (20:122), Abraham (2:124), Noah (21:76,-47), Jonah (Younus)(21:87-88),Moses (28:16-17;7:150-151, 18:73), David (-25), Sulaiman (38:34-35), Joseph(48:2). Also in Sahih Al-Bukhari Volume 9, Hadith. 532C and Hadith Qudsi Number 36).
The blood relationship has no bearing in the matters of faith, reward and punishment. According to divine design of creation, humanity has been provided guidance, hence every individual is responsible for his own deeds and will be accountable to Allah: “O mankind! Have fear of your Lord and fear that Day when no father shall avail his son nor a son his father…”(Qur’an;31:33). History is full of examples whereby the very close relatives of the Messengers of Allah could not be saved from divine rage due to their disobedience. Allah says: “O mankind! Have fear of your lord and fear that Day when no father shall avail his son nor a son his father...”(31:33). The examples of kinsfolk of Messengers, who were doomed have been mentioned in Qur’an: Noah(66:10, 21:76, -47), Abraham(9:114, 2:124). Where as the wife of Pharaoh, a pious women sought His Mercy (66:11). It has been narrated by Abu Huraira: When Allah revealed the verse: “Warn your nearest kinsmen,”(Qur’an;26:214), Allah's Apostle got up and said, "O people of Quraish (or said similar words)! Buy (i.e. save) yourselves (from the Hellfire) as I cannot save you from Allah's punishment; O Bani Abd Manaf! I cannot save you from Allah's punishment, O Safiya, the Aunt of Allah's Apostle! I cannot save you from Allah's punishment; O Fatima bint Muhammad! Ask me anything from my wealth, but I cannot save you from Allah's punishment."(Al Bukhari Hadith Number: 4:16). The kinsfolk of Prophet earned the love of all Mulims and exalted position due to their piety and services to the cause of Islam even at the cost of personel comfort and lives. Perfection is with Allah: “My Lord neither makes a mistake nor does He forget.”(Qur’an;).
Qur’an – The Well Protected Book of Guidance :
To achieve this universal mission, Qur’an, the final and complete Book for the guidance of humanity was reveled to the Prophet: “To you, O Muhammad, We have revealed this Book with the truth. It confirms whatever has remained intact in the scriptures which came before it and also to safeguard it. Therefore, judge between people according to Allah's revelations and do not yield to their vain desires diverging from the truth which has come to you. We have ordained a law and a Way of life for each of you. If Allah wanted He could have made all of you a single nation. But He willed otherwise in order to test you in what He has given you; therefore try to excel one another in good deeds. Ultimately you all shall return to Allah; then He will show you the truth of those matters in which you dispute.”(Qur’an;). “O Muhammad, say: "O mankind! I am the Messenger of Allah towards all of you from He to whom belongs the kingdom of the heavens and the earth. There is no deity but Him. He brings to life and causes to die. Therefore, believe in Allah and His Messenger, the unlettered Prophet (Muhammad) who believes in Allah and His Word (Qur’an). Follow him so that you may be rightly guided."(Qur’an;7:158). “(O Prophet, declare) "O mankind! The truth has come to you from your Lord! He that follows guidance (
Right Way) follows it for his own good, and he that goes astray does so at his own risk; for I am not a custodian over you."(10:108).“..He whom Allah guides is rightly guided; but he whom He lets go astray, you will find no guardian to lead him to the Right Way.”(). “Say, "The Holy Spirit (Gabriel) has brought it down piecemeal intact from your Lord to strengthen the faith of the believers, and to give guidance and good news to the Muslims."”(16:102), “..We have heard a wonderful Qur'an which guides to the Right Way. We have believed in it and henceforth shall worship none besides Our Lord.”(72:1-2).
Unlike previous scriptures, Allah has Himself taken responsibility to guard and preserve Qur’an against corruption: “Surely We have revealed this reminder (The Qur'an); and We will surely preserve it Our self.”(Qur’an;15:9). This is proved form the fact that Qur’an is the only divine scripture available in its original form since 1400 years.
The Inheritor of Islam :
Muslims as the ‘middle way community’ have been entrusted with great responsibility: “Thus We have appointed you a middle nation, that ye may be witnesses against mankind, and that the messenger may be a witness against you…”(Qur’an;2:143). They have been appointed as inheritor of Qur’an :“We have given the Book (Qur’an) as an inheritance to those of Our servants (Muslims) whom We have chosen, among them there are some who wrong their own souls, some follow a middle course and some, by Allah's leave, excel in good deeds; which is the supreme virtue.”(Qur’an;35:32). As true inheritors of Qur’an, the Muslims have obligation to read, understand, practice and preach Qur’an to the humanity. Since it is not possible for every one to be fully learned in the sciences of Qur’an and Hadith, they followed the guidance from Qur’an: “Nor should the believers all go forth together: if a group from every expedition remained behind, They could devote themselves to studies In religion, and admonish the people when They return to them,- that Thus They (may learn) to guard themselves (against evil).” (Qur’an;9:122). “Let there arise from among you a band of people who should invite to righteousness, enjoin good and forbid evil; such are the ones who shall be successful.”(Qur’an;3:104). In his farewell address during last Hajj, the Apostle also reemphasized the great responsibilities, which they have to shoulder, he said: O’ People, no prophet or apostle will come after me and no new faith will be born. Reason well, therefore, O People, and understand my words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two things, the Qur'an and my example, the Sunnah and if you follow these you will never go astray. All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to others and those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness oh Allah that I have conveyed your message to your people.” Muslims have been able to create men of knowledge and understanding to spread the message of Islam. History is witness to the fact that not only the original message of Allah and teachings of Prophet (Sunnah) have been preserved but has continuously been spread to the humanity by the Muslims as its true inheritors. At present one fifth of humanity is following Islam which is growing at a fast pace. The love and affection for the Prophet for the members of his Household (Ahl-al-Bait), their piety and contributions towards the cause of Islam have earned them a very respectable place in the eyes of all Muslims.
Authority to Rule:
Islam is not like ordinary religions, of some beliefs, rituals of worship and dogmas. Islam it is a complete way of life having its own political, social, economic, judicial and other philosophies covering every sphere of spiritual and materials aspects of human life, with methodologies for their practical implementation. This requires a comprehensive system of government and political system for practical implementations of Islamic way of life for the society. The authority to rule is the sole prerogative of Allah: “All that is in the heavens and the earth glorifies Allah. To Him belongs the kingdom and to Him is due all praise, He has power over all things.”(Qur’an;64:1). “We are the One Who established you (mankind) on earth, and provided you means of your sustenance therein: yet little it is that you pay thanks.”(Qur’an;). “... The Command belongs to none but Allah...”(Qur’an;). He appointed man as vicegerent on earth, He grants or take away the kingdom to whomsoever He please: “Say: "O Allah! Master of all the Kingship, You give the kingdom to whom You please and take away the kingdom from whomsoever You please; You give honor to whom You please and disgrace to whom You please; all the good is in Your hand; surely You have power over everything. (Qur’an;). “He is the One Who has made you the inheritors of the earth and raised some of you in ranks over others so that He may test you in what He has given you. Surely your Lord is swift in retribution; yet He is also very Forgiving, Merciful.”( Qur’an;6:165). Some of His prophets were given the Law and authority to rule, like Prophet Moses and Muhammad (peace be upon them), while most of others Apostles like Jesus and many other prophets among the Children of Israel were entrusted with the responsibility to deliver His message of guidance. The rulers were appointed : “Their Prophet told them: "Allah has appointed Saul (Talut) to be your king." They replied: "How can he be our king when some of us are more deserving than him? Besides he is not rich." The Prophet said: "Allah has chosen him to rule over you and blessed him with knowledge and stature. Allah grants kingship to whom He pleases and Allah has boundless knowledge.”(Qur’an;2:247). David and Solomon were granted both prophethood and kingdom: “By Allah's will they put the unbelievers to flight, and David slew Goliath, Allah gave him the kingdom and wisdom, and taught him what else He pleased. If Allah had not been repelling one set of people by the might of others, there would indeed be disorder on earth, but Allah is Gracious to all the worlds.”(Qur’an;2:251). “And Solomon was David's heir..”(Qur’an;27:16).
In the Islamic state, the people charged with authority or responsibility or decision, or the settlement of affairs are mentioned as Ulu-l-amr: "“O ye who believe! obey Allah and obey the Apostle and those charged with authority among you. If ye differ in anything among yourselves refer it to Allah and His Apostle if ye do believe in Allah and the Last Day: that is best and most suitable for final determination”( Qur’an;). It may include the government and other responsible persons in various government department and institutions dealing with the public, community affairs. Like the Executive, Judiciary, Police, Scholars appointed by Government (not self appointed guardians) for religious guidance. They all have to act with in the bounds of Qur’an and Sunnah: “…Allah will certainly help those who help His cause; most surely Allah is Mighty, Powerful. These are the people who, if We establish them (in power, authority) in the land, will establish Salah and pay Zakah, enjoin justice and forbid evil; the final decision of all affairs is in the hands of Allah.”(Qur’an;22:40-41). The ultimate authority rests in Allah. Prophets of Allah derive their authority from Him. As Islam makes no sharp division between sacred and secular affairs, it expects governments to be imbued with righteousness. Likewise Islam expects Muslims to respect the authority of such government (not against Qur’an and Sunnah) for otherwise there can be no order or discipline. In case of any difference of opinion among themselves then the matter is to be settled in accordance with the guidance from Qur’an and Sunnah.
After the Prophet, it has been experienced that the authority to rule may be combined in one person, well versed with the religious, political and administrative affairs, like the Rightly Guided Caliphs, of early Muslim era. Later, it is observed that with the change of system of ruler, from election of Caliph to the hereditary kinship, the rulers were not very well versed in the theological affairs, the appointments of experts in respective fields for consultation, advise and assistance became the norm. The Prophet could foresee such situation in his vision when he said: Narrated Abdullah: Allah's Apostle said to us, "You will see after me, selfishness (on the part of other people) and other matters that you will disapprove of." They asked, "What do you order us to do, O Allah's Apostle (under such circumstances)?" He said, "Pay their rights to them (to the rulers) and ask your right from Allah."(Sahih Bukhari, Volume 9 Hadith.175 & also 179). Narrated Qabisah ibn Waqqas : The Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him) said: After me you will be ruled by rulers who will delay the prayer and it will be to your credit but to their discredit. So pray with them so long as they pray facing the kiblah.(Sunan of Abu Dawood:179).Narrated Ziyad ibn Hudayr: Umar said to me: Do you know what demolishes Islam? I said: No. Whereupon he said: It is the slip of a scholar and the dispute of the hypocrite by the Book, and the commands of the misguided rulers which demolish it. Transmitted by Darimi.(Al Tirmidhi Hadith.102)
Narrated Awf ibn Malik; The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “The best of your rulers are those whom you love and who love you, who invoke God's blessings upon you and you invoke His blessings upon them. And the worst of your rulers are those whom you hate and who hate you and whom you curse and who curse you. It was asked (by those present): Shouldn't we overthrow them with the help of the sword? He said: No, as long as they establish prayer among you. If you then find anything detestable in them, you should hate their administration, but do not withdraw yourselves from their obedience.”(Sahih Muslim Hadith number 861, similar Hadith number 860 has been narrated AbuSa'id al-Khudri). Narrated Abu Sa'id al-Khudri; The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “The best fighting (jihad) in the path of Allah is (to speak) a word of justice to an oppressive ruler.”(Sunan of Abu Dawood No.2040).
The mere idea of a separate order of infallible priesthood, to stand between Allah and man and be the exclusive repository of Allah's secrets is derogatory to the goodness and all-pervading grace of Allah. (Abdullah Yousuf Ali). With the end of line of Prophethood through last Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), the process of divine inspiration through Revelations has ended. Qur’an, the last book of guidance is protected by Allah, is available to humanity in its original form, along with Sunnah of Prophet. Allah says: “This Qur'an is revealed in Arabic, which is free from any flaw, so that they may learn to be righteous.”(Qur’an;39:28), “Praise be to Allah Who has revealed the Book to His servant and did not make it complicated. It is straightforward so that He may warn about the terrible punishment for the unbelievers from Him and give good news to the believers who do good deeds that they shall have a goodly reward,”(Qur’an;18:1-2). Muslims continue to have successfully lived up to the divine trust bestowed upon them as inheritor of Qur’an collectively, without any infallible priesthood. Muslims highly revere the members of Household of Prophet due to their knowledge, piety, contributions and sacrifices rendered for the cause of Islam. Infallibility is the virtue, which is the sole prerogative of Allah and His word: “..He neither makes a mistake nor does He forget.”(Qur’an; ).
More at: Infallible Imamat-Analysis:
Proof from Nihjul Balagh, Most Authentic Shia Book:
Ali [r.a] shows his reluctance to accept Khilafah/Imamah:
The Shia resources [considered reliable by them] also affirm that Ali [r.a] did not present himself as a candidate for the Caliphate [Nihjul Balagh Sermon #5] both at the time of death of Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] and 3rd Caliph Usman [r.a]. He accepted the consensus of people on both occasions. He reluctantly accepted the Caliphate as 4th Caliph on insistence of people [Nihjul Balagh Sermon # 227, 91]. If Caliphate or Imamah was divinely ordained fundamental of faith of Islam [as claimed by Shiites], which determines the belief and Kufar, then by not making efforts for this office he appears to himself put the people in to disbelief. The fact is that its not so, Ali [r.a] did what was most appropriate at both the occasions. it is ignominious to accuse the brave and fearless man like Ali [r.a] to resort to Deception [Takeyah]
According to Nihjul Balagh, the mist authentic book of Shi'ite, Ali [r.a] is attributed to have said to the people who wanted him to assume the caliphate :
O' People! Steer clear through the waves of mischief by boats of deliverance, turn away from the path of dissension and put off the crowns of pride. Prosperous is one who rises with wings (i.e. when he has power) or else he remains peaceful and others enjoy ease. It (i.e. the aspiration for Caliphate) is like turbid water or like a morsel that would suffocate the person who swallows it. One who plucks fruits before ripening is like one who cultivated in another's field.
If I speak out they would call me greedy towards power but if I keep quiet they would say I was afraid of death. It is a pity that after all the ups and downs (I have been through). By Allah the son of Abu Talib (2) is more familiar with death than an infant with the breast of its mother. I have hidden knowledge, if I disclose it you will start trembling like ropes in deep wells [Nihjul Balagh Sermon #5 At death of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), when some people proposed to him to be Caliph.]
"You drew out my hand towards you for allegiance but I held it back and you stretched it but I contracted it. Then you crowed over me as the thirsty camels crowd on the watering cisterns on their being taken there, so much so that shoes were torn, shoulder-cloths fell away and the weak got trampled, and the happiness of people on their allegiance to me was so manifested that small children felt joyful, the old staggered (up to me) for it, the sick too reached for it helter skelter and young girls ran for it without veils". [Nihjul Balagh Sermon # 227]
What The Shi'ites Say About Their 12 Imams?
"They [Jews and Christians] take their rabbis and their monks for their lords apart from Allah, and also the Messiah, son of Mary, whereas they were commanded to worship none but the One True God. There is no god but He. Exalted be He above those whom they associate with Him in His Divinity."
"They have taken their scholars and monks as their Lords the Holy Prophet himself explained its true significance. According to a Tradition, when Hadrat `Adi bin Hatim, who was formerly a Christian, came to the Holy Prophet with the intention of understanding Islam, he asked several questions in order to remove his doubts. One of these was: "This verse accuses us of taking our scholars and monks as our lords. What is its real meaning, sir? For we do not take them as our fords."
As a reply to this, the Holy Prophet put him a counter-question: "Is it not a fact that you accept as unlawful what they declare to be unlawful, and lawful what they declare to be lawful?" 'Adi confessed, "Yes, sir, it is so." The Holy Prophet replied, "This amounts to making them your lords." Incidentally, this Tradition shows that those who themselves set limits to the lawful and the unlawful without the authority of Allah's Book, assume for themselves the rank of Godhead, and those who acknowledge their right of making laws take them as their Lords.
The Status of Shia Imams:
- "All the Imams are infallible just like the prophets. The Shi'ites derive their religion from their immaculate Imams" (Ibid, p. 22)
- "By listening to the voice of a person, the Imams can tell if the person was destined to go to hell or to heaven; they would thus answer his questions accordingly" (Usool al Kafi, p. 185) .
- "The Imams possess all the knowledge granted to angels, prophets and messengers" (Al-Kulaini, Al-kaafi, p.255.)
- "The Imams know when they will die, and they do not die except by their own choice" (Ibid, p: 258.)
- "The Imams have knowledge of whatever occurred in the past and whatever will happen in the future, and nothing is concealed from them" (Ibid, p. 260.)
- "The Imams have knowledge of all the revealed books, regardless of the languages in which they were revealed" (Ibid, p. 227.)
- "No one compiled the Qur'an completely except the Imams, and they encompass all of its knowledge' (Ibid, p. 228)
- "Signs of the prophets are possessed by the Imams" (Ibid, p. 231.)
- "When the Imams' time comes, they will rule in accordance with the ruling of the prophet David and his dynasty. These Imams will not need to ask for presentation of evidence before passing their judgments" (Ibid,p. 397.)
- "There is not a single truth possessed by a people save that which originated with the Imams, and everything which did not proceed from them is false" (Ibid, p.277.)
Now formulate your own opinion!