Sunday, May 23, 2010

THE WIVES AND MOTHERS OF THE TWELVE HOLY IMAMS‏

By Freda B. Stauffer Abstract: Little is known among average Muslims about the lives of the wives and mothers of the twelve Holy Imams. However, this research project reveals that there is a world of knowledge available which could enhance our understanding of who they were and where they came from. Introduction: The bloodline of the Prophet’s progeny, peace be upon him and his family, is truly an ocean into which many rivers flowed. Contrary to the popular notion, among some circles, that Shia are a kind of tribal entity, the origins of the twelve Imam’s wives and mothers proves otherwise. Their mixed bloodline proves the universality of their message and mission. There is documentation in certain collections of hadith which declares that the number of the Prophet’s successors is twelve. Shia, however, are the Muslims who are able to provide this list of twelve names. Shia are also able to provide some specific history about their wives and the mothers who gave birth to the Imams (May Allah bless them all). Twelve Imams in general, peace be upon them: It has been narrated that the list of twelve Imams’ names is written , along with the names of their mothers since before the demise of the Holy Prophet. This narration from the fourth Imam, Ali Zaynul Abideen, peace be upon him, makes that point clear: “We have found twelve names in the parchment and the tablet. Their Imāmate, the names of their fathers, and of their mothers have been written in the tablet,” replied the Imām, “and seven testamentary trustees will come out of the loins of my son Mohammed. Al-Mahdi will be one of them.”(1) This narration is profoundly enlightening in the context of any discussion about the wives and mothers of the twelve Imams. They were chosen, just as the Imams names were foretold, so were the names of their wives and mothers. Of course most of the Imams had multiple wives, however, one of each of their wives was included in their covenant. Our Sunni Brethren have narrations among their collections which state the number of caliphs was supposed to be twelve, and all of them were supposed to be from the tribe Quraysh. Narrated Jabir ibn Samurah: The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: The religion will continue to be established till there are twelve caliphs over you, and the whole community will agree on each of them. I then heard from the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) some remarks which I could not understand. I asked my father: What is he saying: He said: all of them will belong to Quraysh.(2) Shia, however, are the Muslims who have a record of the twelve Imams from the first to the twelfth, along with some historical details about their wives and mothers. May Allah bless all of them. The first Imam, Ali, peace be upon him: Imam Ali was the first Imam, his relationship with Prophet Mohammed was like the relationship of Prophet Aaron with Prophet Moses. This hadith from one of Ahlul Sunnah’s collections says exactly that: Sa'd b. Abi Waqqas reported that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) left 'Ali b. Abi Talib behind him (as he proceeded) to the expedition of Tabuk, whereupon he ('Ali) said: Allah's Messenger, are you leaving me behind amongst women and children? Thereupon he (the Holy Prophet) said: Aren't you satisfied with being unto me what Aaron was unto Moses but with this exception that there would be no prophet after me.(3) In other words, Imam Ali was everything to Prophet Mohammed that Prophet Aaron was to Prophet Moses, with the exception that he was not a prophet, while Aaron was. However, he was appointed by Allah to be Prophet Mohammed’s minister, helper, or aider, like Aaron was to Moses. This verse from the Qur‘an tells specifically what Aaron was to Moses, and therefore explains what Ali was to Mohammed: 025.035 YUSUFALI: (Before this,) We sent Moses The Book, and appointed his brother Aaron with him as minister; PICKTHAL: We verily gave Moses the Scripture and placed with him his brother Aaron as henchman. SHAKIR: And certainly We gave Musa the Book and We appointed with him his brother Haroun an aider.(4) There are many other verses and hadith which prove that Imam Ali was the first Islamic Caliph, however, this is not the primary subject of this article. Imam Ali’s Mother was Lady Fatima bint Asad, peace be upon her. She was from a family that practiced everything that Allah had previously revealed to the Prophets who came prior to Prophet Mohammed. Some people would call her a Jewish Christian, which is the nearest contemporary example of her religion prior to her acceptance of Islam. Her acceptance of Islam, however, does not seem to be so much like a conversion as a confirmation and an extension of what she already believed. Imam Ali’s father, “Abū-Talib has said, “Do not you know that we found Muhammad (a.s) a Prophet the same way as Mūsa (a.s) whose references are there in the Earlier Books.” This simply conveys that he and Imam Ali’s mother believed in The Jewish and Christian scriptures and Islam is a continuation of the religious history revealed by Allah. Lady Fatima Bint Asad was a Lady with very high moral values and she believed in the religion of prophet Ibrahim, pronounced Abraham in English. She was not from a family of idolaters and therefore her son, Imam Ali, came from this stock. She was also Prophet Mohammed’s foster mother after he was orphaned, and she was the second Lady to swear allegiance to him when he began preaching Islam to his closest relatives. When she passed away Prophet Mohammed cried and said that she had been the best of mothers.(5) Such is the first Great Lady who mothered both the Prophet of Islam and the first of the Imams. Imam Ali is the first example that the Imamate was dedicated not by birth, but by divine selection. In other words, Imamate was not passed from a father to his first born son, as the patriarchal regimes typically do. It was an arrangement which was established by divine appointment and therefore does not conform to such a system as patriarchy in which birth-order is more important than conduct. His wife, Lady Fatima az-Zahra, daughter of Prophet Mohammed, was his first wife and while she lived he did not marry any other women. After she passed away he married several other women from various tribes at different times and had children by some of them as well. Nevertheless, the covenant was with Lady Fatima az-Zahra, daughter of Prophet Mohammed. The bloodline of Prophet Mohammed passed through her, even though she is a woman, similar to the way the bloodline of Prophet Jesus passed through Lady Mary, who was a descendant of the bloodline of Prophet Isaac. Lady Fatima az-Zahra had two sons and two daughters who lived to maturity, her third son was miscarried.(6) Through her, Imam Ali became the father of two Imams, al-Hasan and al-Hussein, and the grandfather to the other nine Imams as well as grandfather to all of Prophet Mohammed’s progeny. So the two grandfathers of Prophet Mohammed’s progeny are the prophet Himself on the maternal side and Imam Ali on the paternal side. What an amazing and noble establishment of the family of Prophet Mohammed! Lady Fatima az-Zahra represented the women of Islam in so many ways. She was mentioned in so many hadith which are supported by Quranic verses. The most important one for this article being the hadith of purification. 'A'isha reported that Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) went out one norning wearing a striped cloak of the black camel's hair that there came Hasan b. 'Ali. He wrapped hitn under it, then came Husain and he wrapped him under it along with the other one (Hasan). Then came Fatima and he took her under it, then came 'Ali and he also took him under it and then said: Allah only desires to take away any uncleanliness from you, O people of the household, and purify you (thorough purifying)(7) This hadith is one of many which shows her status in Islam as above the status of other believing women. It shows that she was spiritually purified at the same level as the male members of her family, her father, her sons, and her Husband, Imam Ali. It may be noticed that she was invited under the cloak even before her husband, Imam Ali. The latent symbolism of this event is that she was equal in purification to the men in the Holy Family. It also shows that none of Prophet Mohammed’s wives, or any other women, were included in this special purification. The following Quranic verse was revealed when this event occurred: 033.033 YUSUFALI: And stay quietly in your houses, and make not a dazzling display, like that of the former Times of Ignorance; and establish regular Prayer, and give regular Charity; and obey Allah and His Messenger. And Allah only wishes to remove all abomination from you, ye members of the Family, and to make you pure and spotless. PICKTHAL: And stay in your houses. Bedizen not yourselves with the bedizenment of the Time of Ignorance. Be regular in prayer, and pay the poor-due, and obey Allah and His messenger. Allah's wish is but to remove uncleanness far from you, O Folk of the Household, and cleanse you with a thorough cleansing. SHAKIR: And stay in your houses and do not display your finery like the displaying of the ignorance of yore; and keep up prayer, and pay the poor-rate, and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House! and to purify you a (thorough) purifying.(8) This verse is the supporting evidence that the event of the cloak was significant and meaningful to Islam in general, not just to the family of Prophet Mohammed. Since the remaining divinely appointed Imams and their divinely selected mothers were not born yet at the time of this event, the total number of Imams must be noticed somehow. No portion of the Quran is coincidental, and this verse’s reference number is no coincidence. It is 3 3: 3 3, which adds up to the number twelve. There are ever so many other events and narrations and Quranic verses which support the merits of the family of Prophet Mohammed. Nevertheless, that is another subject for another article. Lady Fatima az-Zahra and Lady Mary, Mother of Prophet Jesus, are the best examples in Islam which show the importance of the matrilineal contribution to Holy bloodlines. The second Imam, al-Hasan, peace be upon him: Based on the above discussion of matrilineal bloodlines, the following hadith from Ahlul Sunnah, helps to support the above evidence as well. It states that al-Mahdi will be a descendant of Imam Hasan. In fact, it was one of his daughters who married Imam al-Hussein’s son, and the fourth Imam, Ali Zainul Abideen, through whom the bloodline of the Imams converges so that the remaining Imams are actually descendants of both Imams, al-Hasan and al-Hussein. Narrated Ali ibn AbuTalib: AbuIshaq told that Ali looked at his son al-Hasan and said: This son of mine is a sayyid (chief) as named by the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him), and from his loins will come forth a man who will be called by the name of your Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) and resemble him in conduct but not in appearance. He then mentioned the story about his filling the earth with justice.(9) This hadith says something very subtle at first, yet it glares out to a reader who is aware. It says that al-Mahdi will have the same name as Prophet Mohammed, and will be like him in conduct “but not in appearance.” This is an allusion to the fact that al-Mahdi, may Allah hasten his reappearance, will have a racially mixed background. However, al-Mahdi would resemble the Prophet in conduct! The Quranic verse which supports this narration is provided: 049.013 YUSUFALI: O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise (each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things). PICKTHAL: O mankind! Lo! We have created you male and female, and have made you nations and tribes that ye may know one another. Lo! the noblest of you, in the sight of Allah, is the best in conduct. Lo! Allah is Knower, Aware. SHAKIR: O you men! surely We have created you of a male and a female, and made you tribes and families that you may know each other; surely the most honorable of you with Allah is the one among you most careful (of his duty); surely Allah is Knowing, Aware.(10) Praise be to Allah, how enlightening this verse is! It was revealed for the pagan Arabs who were extremely prejudiced against non-Arabs. Nonetheless, it is still applicable to life as we know it today because many people are still very prejudiced against other nations and especially towards women coming to Islam through other religions. The bloodline of Prophet Mohammed is particularly enlightening to the subject of women from other religious backgrounds who accept Islam and marry Muslim men from various national backgrounds. Prophet Mohammed’s bloodline is racially mixed because the criteria for selecting the wives and mothers of the Imams was conduct, not national origin. While some of them did marry their cousins, Imam Ali and Lady Fatima were cousins, and Imam Ali Zaynul Abideen married his cousin, Lady Fatima daughter of al-Hasan, most of their wives and mothers, however, were not their cousins. The Imams’ cousins were divinely appointed to be their wives and mothers when they were the best in conduct, and the most suitable women available at the time, to be their wives and the mothers of the succeeding Imams. It should be mentioned that most of the Imams had multiple wives, but the covenant for reproducing the Holy Imams was always with a specific wife. Most of us already know that Imam al-Hasan’s mother was Lady Fatima, daughter of Prophet Mohammed. Her merits have been discussed previously and anyone who wishes to learn more about her may easily obtain material for more information about her history. Imam al-Hasan had approximately thirteen wives, but not all at the same time. His daughter, Lady Fatima daughter of al-Hasan also known as Umm Abd Allah became the wife of the fourth Imam, Ali Zaynul Abideen and mother of the fifth Imam, Mohammed al-Baqir. (11) The third Imam, al-Hussein, peace be upon him: Imam al-Hussein is also an example which negates the idea that the Imamate was decided on a birth-order basis which is passed from father to first-born. If that were the case, then Imamate would have fallen on Imam al-Hasan’s first-born son, for he had at least eight sons. Imamate, however, was decided by divine appointment. Imam al-Hussein was the second son of Lady Fatima, daughter of Prophet Mohammed. Some of her merits are previously discussed, in brief. His wife was Lady Shāhzanān, daughter of Yazdaghird, a Persian king from a long lineage of kings. Like most people in that time, Lady Shāhzanān had several titles, so not everyone knows her by the same name. She and her sisters had been captured in a war by one of the sons of the second false caliph, Umar. Apparently they were enslaved for several years, until they were rescued by the Imams. Lady Shāhzanān was allowed to choose which of the Muslim men she would like to marry and she chose Imam Hussein, because she believed in Islam and wanted to marry the highest ranking Islamic leader of her time. Even though Imam Ali was still alive and he was the one who rescued her from prison, he was already old and even Imam Hasan’s reign had not yet begun at this time, she chose Imam Hussein. This is because the choice had already been made by Allah, she wanted the one with whom her Holy covenant had already been established. Imam Hussein taught her the Islamic values so well that she no longer missed the high life she had led as a princess. She then gave birth to the fourth Imam, Ali Zaynul Abideen and she died while he was still a baby.(12) The fourth Imam, Ali Zainul Abideen, peace be upon him: As mentioned above, his mother, Lady Shāhzanān was a high-born Persian princess she was the seal of the Holy relationship between the Persians and the Arabs. Her child, Imam Ali Zaynul Abideen made the Arab - Persian relations strong. The fourth Imam was also able to lobby against prejudice towards children whose mothers were either non-Arab or freed slave women.(13) As a result of this divinely selected bloodline, all of the Imams who came after her, have a Persian grandmother. As stated before, the matrilineal contribution to Holy bloodlines is very important, evident by the examples of Lady Mary, mother of Prophet Jesus and Lady Fatima, daughter of Prophet Mohammed. Imam Ali Zaynul Abideen’s wife, Lady Fatima daughter of al-Hasan also known as Umm Abd Allah. Her merits are rather obvious. Since her father was an Imam and she was a daughter of Holy lineage, one would expect her to have the highest level of conduct. She had several sisters, for Imam al-Hasan had seven daughters, but the covenant was with her. This Holy daughter of the second Imam, al-Hasan became the mother of the fifth Imam, Mohammad al-Baqir. Therefore, through her, both Imam al-Hasan and Imam al-Hussein are the grandfathers of all the Imams who came after her.(14) The Fifth Imam, Mohammed al-Baqir, peace be upon him: His mother, Lady Fatima Bint al-Hasan also known as Umm Abd Allah was like many of the Arabs, men and women, she had a common name given at birth and after that she received another name which was like a title of respect. Furthermore, her father, Imam al-Hasan called her al-Siddiqa, which means ‘the truthful Lady.’ Such was the lap which trained the fifth Imam while he was a child; she was known as a truthful Lady by those who knew her.(15) Some historically significant Arabs, men and women, have quite a long list of titles. Therefore, some confusion is inevitable for modern researchers who are unaware of this practice. The mother of Imam al-Baqir is an example of this case, as are many of the other divinely covenanted wives and mothers. His wife, Umm Farwa, daughter of al-Qasim b. Mohammed b. Bakr was the first Sunni caliph, Abu Bakr’s great, great granddaughter. He had at least three other wives, but the covenant was with Umm Farwa’s first son.(16) The fact that the covenant for Imamate was on her son, Imam Ja’far. This placed him in a unique diplomatic position to create a stronger bond between Sunni scholars of that time, and the Ahlul Bayt. He was allowed enough freedom, by the King in his era, to establish a physical school in which he taught people about Islamic philosophy. This was a privilege that had not previously or afterwards been enjoyed by any Infallible Imam, since they were kept quite busy trying to negotiate with the tyrannical Kings of their times.(17) Most of these tyrants simply wanted to kill off Prophet Mohammed‘s bloodline mainly because Islam taught that the Kings’ lifestyles and political methods were incorrect. The Sixth Imam, Jaf’ar al-Sadiq, peace be upon him: His mother, Umm Farwa, a descendant of Abu Bakr, was surely worthy of her position as the mother of Imam al-Sadiq, because the covenant was with her. He did not deviate the tradition of marrying multiple women. The Lady with whom the covenant was fulfilled was Lady Hamida Khatun, who had been enslaved. Imam al-Sadiq married her so she could be a free woman. She became the mother of the seventh Imam, Musa al-Kadhim. Many of the Shia at the time believed that the Imamate would be transferred to Imam Al-Sadiq’s oldest son, Ismail, who’s mother was a granddaughter of the fourth Imam, however, he died while his father was still alive. Therefore most of those Shia who had expected Ismail to be their new leader after Imam al-Sadiq knew that it would be one of his brothers instead. Although there was another older brother as well, the Imamate passed over them both.(18) The seventh Imam, Musa Kadhim, peace be upon him: Imam al-Kadhim is another example of the fact that the covenant for Imamate did not travel along the bloodline from father to oldest son. He was not the first son of the sixth Imam, Ja‘far al-Sadiq, he had two older brothers who were not appointed. In fact, the covenant for Imamate is often easier to trace by which of their wives was the divinely selected mother of the Imam, than by the order in which he was born into the family. Imam Al-Kadhim’s mother’s origin is not completely clear, some historians believe she was a North African Berber, others believe she was Roman, however, it is clear that most historians agree she was a princess from a non-Arab family who had somehow fallen into the unfortunate position of slavery. When Imam al-Sadiq met her, his father had just purchased her from a slave market. She was very ashamed about her condition, when the Imam asked her what her name was, she said “Hamida.” He elevated her spirits by telling her “you are praiseworthy in this world and praised in the hereafter.” Imam al-Sadiq loved her so much, he respected her more than any of his other wives. He said about her: "Hamida is as purified from defilement as a gold ingot; the angels guarded her until she gave to me, and the Imam after me, a dignity from Allah." Imam al-Kadhim then became a lobbyist to encourage his followers to free and marry slave girls. Imam Musa motivated and urged his companions to marry female slaves, saying: "Marry female slaves, for they have cleverness and intellects many women do not have." This was a revolutionary process in the experience of the Arabs. Some Kings even had the audacity to criticize the Imams and their followers for condoning this practice.(19) Imam al-Kadhim’s mother Hamida had been a freed slave, and he perpetuated the practice of marrying freed slave women, in fact all of his wives were freed slaves. The Lady who gave birth to Imam al-Ridha, had several titles and no one is really sure which name was used the most, and it is not really important. The important thing is that her owners knew that she was destined to marry a special person and that she was to give birth to someone important. Her master reported: “It is fitting that this slave-girl should be with the best person on earth, for she will soon give birth to a son such as has not been born in the east or the west.” She loved Allah so much that when she gave birth to the eighth Imam, Ali al-Ridha, she asked for a wet nurse to help her with his feeding. She wanted to free more of her time to worship Allah. (20) She is reported by some historians to have been of Nubian origin, which is known as Ethiopia today.(21) She was one of the special Ladies who were chosen to prove that the Holy bloodline, as well as the general Muslim population ought to be decided by the piety, conduct, manners and ethics of an individual, rather than an economically, racially or nationally divided situation. The eighth Imam, Ali al-Ridha, peace be upon him: His divinely selected mother, then, was most likely Nubian. His wife with whom the covenant was written, was a slave wife from Nubia, the country we know as Ethiopia today. She was the blessed Lady who bore the ninth Imam, Mohammed Jawad al-Taqi. The fact that they had so many titles makes it difficult to narrow down the most popular names they answered to during their lives. Their names, however, are not as important as the fact that they were divinely appointed Ladies who blessed the family of Prophet Mohammed with matrilineal connections with Nubia. According to the histories of the women which are mentioned above, one of their special blessings was that the Holy Imams they bore became a source of strength between the Nubian and the Arab nations. The ninth Imam, Mohammed Jawad al-Taqi, peace be upon him: His respected mother was Nubian, and his own wife was a freed-slave wife. The history which is available about her in English is quite limited. She was delighted to be the mother of the tenth Imam and here is the brief amount of information which is readily available about her: “Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) bought this bondmaid and he himself educated her. She lived in the house of imamate with the Alawid women, the daughters of the messenger of Allah (a.s.), who were the example of honor, chastity, and purity. She was affected by their conducts and devoted herself to worship Allah. She spent her nights worshipping and reciting the Book of Allah.”(22) The tenth Imam, Imam Ali Hadi al-Naqi, peace be upon him: Therefore, his mother was a slave girl who was freed. Sadly, there is not a large amount of information available about her in English. The little that is available says that her most popular name was Saleel and that she was purified. “She was a bondmaid from an-Nawbah. It did not harm her that she was a bondmaid, for man in the view of Islam is exalted by his guidance, piety, and propriety, and he is degraded by deviation from the right path.”(23) So we know she was from an-Nawbah, which is now known as Yemen, and that she was one of the best Ladies, like all of their mothers. Perhaps there is more of her history stored on some dusty library shelf in Qum, Iran or Najaf, Iraq. Maybe it got lost in the shuffle of time and wars and attacks on the Holy family of Prophet Mohammed. Perhaps it was burned with some other precious Islamic history books which were burned by the enemies of Allah. It is hard to tell exactly why there is so little information available about some of the wives and mothers of the Holy Imams while so much is available about others. The eleventh Imam, Hasan al-Askari, peace be upon him: As stated above, Imam Hasan al-Askari’s mother, Lady Saleel, was from Yemen. She had been a slave and was freed by marrying his father, Imam Ali Hadi al-Naqi. His wife, Lady Narjis, was a Roman Princess, a descendent of Simon Peter, one of Jesus’ divinely appointed twelve apostles. Her lineage is traced back to Simon Peter by matrilineal connections, through her mother, and is traced back to Caesar, King of Rome through her father. She also had several titles, so she was not always called the same name in the history books.(24) She was the grand daughter of the Byzantine King of her time.(25) Byzantium we know, was an empire in what we now call Turkey. The history of Lady Narjis is one of the most profoundly moving histories for a person arriving at faith in Islam from a Christian background. Her father tried to marry her to her cousin, but due to divine intervention, the marriage did not become a reality. One night after this she saw a dream. She says, “In my dream I saw Janabe Isa (A.S.) appeared with his disciples and suddenly Holy Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) appeared and light was emitting from his face and turning towards Janabe Isa (A.S.) sought my hand for his son Imam Hasan Askari (A.S.) and Janabe Isa (A.S.) in turn asked Shamoon,. who accepted it with great respect". She concealed her dream and did not relate it to even her father. After four days she again had the vision of Janabe Fatema Zahra (S.A..) and Janabe Maryam (A.S.)before whom she expresses her desire to have a glance of Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.). Janabe Fatema (S.A.) explains to her that he could not come to her unless she becomes a real Muslim. She promptly embraces Islam and got the opportunity to see her husband. Praise be to Allah! This great Lady accepted Islam after she saw Prophet Jesus, his apostles and Prophet Mohammed in one dream and then she saw Lady Mary, mother of Jesus, and Lady Fatima, daughter of Prophet Mohammed in another dream! If this is not enough of a miracle to shake one’s soul, then what is? When she saw Imam al-Askari in a subsequent dream, he told her what to do to get to him. He told her that her grandfather was planning an attack against the Muslims and for her to disguise herself as one of her slave girls. She did this and was captured with the other slave girls and taken down the Euphrates to Iraq, where Imam al-Askari’s father purchased her from her handlers. She was married to Imam Al-Askari soon afterwards.(26) Not long after their marriage, she gave birth to the twelfth Imam, al-Mahdi. For a person coming to Islam from a Christian background her background is an earth-moving revelation. She is a kind of seal between the twelve divinely ordained apostles of Prophet Jesus and the twelve divinely appointed Imams of the Prophet Mohammed’s progeny. The covenant of God’s promises to humanity is completed through her. The twelfth Imam, al-Mahdi, May Allah hasten his return: Imam al-Mahdi was born in a time when the tyrants of the time were extremely oppressive towards the Ahlul Bayt. They went so far as to imprison his father throughout most of his reign in order to try to prevent him from producing a male offspring, because they knew he would be the succeeding Imam. However, no amount of oppression and tyranny can prevent God from accomplishing something He promised to accomplish. After he was born, his birth had to be kept a secret in order to protect him from the enemies of Islam, who were still on the warpath against the bloodline of the Holy family of Islam. He was five years old when he became Imam, because his father was poisoned at that time. When the tyrants and their friends and supporters found out about his existance, they did what was natural to them, they came after the child Imam and tried to kill him. Allah, however hid him from His enemies and kept him safe for some time. He returned once and was visible to humans for some time. Now we are waiting for the time when Allah will return him to us to restore justice after only oppression and tyranny is being experienced by the believers.(27) The fact that he was a hunted child is not a new phenomenon to religious history; Prophet Moses was hunted by the Pharaoh, but he was protected by Allah in a most peculiar way. The fact that he became a religious leader at the age of five is not unusual to religious history either, because Prophet Jesus left his mother to debate with Jewish scholars when he was still a child. The hadith below provides a nice finishing touch to this article: Narrated Umm Salamah, Ummul Mu'minin: The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: The Mahdi will be of my family, of the descendants of Fatimah…(28) Conclusions: While this information may seem insignificant to some people, it is very useful knowledge to increase the faith of converts and intrigue potential converts. This history should not be forgotten, moreover, it should be repeated and preached from every mimbar in every country in order to keep the history alive. If we forget their history, how will we avoid falling into the bad habit of segregation based on skin-tone, nationality and economic status, which was practiced by the pagan Arabs and other non-Muslims? This history is so potent that it should play a very prominent role in Islamic propagation programs around the world. The Holy Imams spent their entire lives showing their followers how to act out the Quran with respect to racial segregation and nationalism versus the merits of faith, character and conduct. May Allah bless them all. All good in this article is from Allah, and please forgive me, kind reader, if I have made any mistakes. I seek only to learn more about Islam and share what I have learned. References: 1 The life of Imām Zayn al ‘Abidin (A.S.) by Bāqir Sharif al-Qarashi. pages 704-05. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam04_sajjad/zayn_al_abidin/26.htm 2 Sunan Abudawud, Kitab al-Mahdi Book 36, Number 4266: http://www.usc.edu/schools/college/crcc/engagement/resources/texts/muslim/hadith/abudawud/036.sat.html 3 Sahih Muslim, The Book Pertaining to the Merits of the Companions, Book 031, Number 5914: http://www.usc.edu/schools/college/crcc/engagement/resources/texts/muslim/hadith/muslim/031.smt.html 4 Holy Quran 5 Biography of Imam Ali, page 87, 111-12 http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam0 1_ali/biography_of_imam_ali/003.htm 6 Biography of Imam Ali, page 173 http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam0 1_ali/biography_of_imam_ali/003.htm 7 Sahih Muslim, Chapter 9: THEE MERITS OF THE FAMILY OF THE PROPHET (MAY PEACE BE UPON HIM) Book 031, Number 5955: http://www.usc.edu/schools/college/crcc/engagement/resources/texts/muslim/hadith/muslim/031.smt.html 8 Holy Quran 9 Sunan Abudawud, Kitab al-Mahdi Book 36, Number 4276A: http://www.usc.edu/schools/college/crcc/engagement/resources/texts/muslim/hadith/abudawud/036.sat.html 10 Holy Quran 11 THE LIFE OF IMAM AL-HASAN AL-MUJTABA. Chapter XXV His Wives and Children. pages 705-09. By Baqir Shareef al-Qurashi. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam02_hasan/the_life_of_imam_hasan/28.htm 12 The life of Imām Zayn al ‘Abidin (A.S.) by Bāqir Sharif al-Qarashi. pages 2-4. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam04_sajjad/zayn_al_abidin/26.htm 13 The life of Imām Zayn al ‘Abidin (A.S.) by Bāqir Sharif al-Qarashi. Pages 6-11 . http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam04_sajjad/zayn_al_abidin/26.htm 14 Kitab al-Irshad, chapter Imam Hasan, pages 289-90 and the chapter on Imam Ali Zainul Abideen, pages 391-92. By Shaykh al-Mufid. Published by Tahrike Tarsile Quran, Inc. Distribution of Holy Quran, P.O. Box 1115, Elmhurst New York 11373. 1st Edition, 1981. Copyright, Mohammedi Trust. 15. The Life of Imam Muhammad ibn 'Ali al-Baqir, by Shaykh Ba`qir Sharï~~f al-Qarashi, Chapter 1, http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam05_baqir/imam_baqir/index.htm 16 Kitab al-Irshad, chapter Imam Mohammed B. Ali al-Baqir, pages 406-07 and the chapter on Imam Ali Zainul Abideen, pages 391-92. By Shaykh al-Mufid. Published by Tahrike Tarsile Quran, Inc. Distribution of Holy Quran, P.O. Box 1115, Elmhurst New York 11373. 1st Edition, 1981. Copyright, Mohammedi Trust. 17 IMAM AL-SADIQ, chapter: How did al-Sadiq become a school? Pages 152-54. By By: Shaykh Mohammed al-Husayn al-Muzaffar. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam06_sadiq/imam_sadiq/index.htm 18 Kitab al-Irshad, . chapter, Mohammed Jaf’ar B. al-Sadiq, page 431-33. By Shaykh al-Mufid. Published by Tahrike Tarsile Quran, Inc. Distribution of Holy Quran, P.O. Box 1115, Elmhurst New York 11373. 1st Edition, 1981. Copyright, Mohammedi Trust. 19 THE LIFE OF IMAM MUSA BIN JA'FAR AL-KAZIM, chapter 1, His Birth and Childhood. By: Baqir Sharif al-Qarashi. Pages 53-55. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam07_kadim/the_life_of_imam_musa_bin_jafar/index.htm 20 The life of Imām 'Ali Bin Mūsā al-Ridā , chapter His Birth and Upbringing, pages 60-62 by: Bāqir Sharif al-Qarashi. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam08_rida/ali_bin_musa_al_rida/index.htm 21 Kerbala and Beyond, pages 193-94. By Yasin T. al-Jibouri. Ansariyan Publications NO. 22 Shohada Street, POB: 37185/187 Qum, Islamic Republic of Iran 22 The Life of Imam ALI bin Muhammad AL-HADI, pages 20-21. By: Baqir Shareef al-Qurashi. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam10_hadi/the_life_of_imam_hadi/index.htm 23 THE LIFE OF IMAM AL-HASAN AL-ASKARI Study And Analysis. page 16. By: Baqir Shareef al-Qurashi. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam11_askari/the_life_of_imam_askari/index.htm 24 THE LIFE OF IMAM AL-MAHDI Peace Be Upon Him, chapter, Manifestation of Light. Page 31. By: Allama Baqir Sharif al-Qarashi. http://www.maaref-foundation.com/english/library/pro_ahl/imam12_mahdi/the_life_of_imam_mahdi/index.htm 25 Kerbala and Beyond. page 300. By Yasin T. al-Jibouri. Ansariyan Publications NO. 22 Shohada Street, POB: 37185/187 Qum, Islamic Republic of Iran 26 Janab-e-Nargis Khatoon (A.S.), the Mother of Imam Mahdi (A.S.). http://www.imamreza.net/eng/imamreza.php?id=6519 . Date retrieved: April 25, 2010. 27 Kerbala and Beyond. page 308-11. By Yasin T. al-Jibouri. Ansariyan Publications NO. 22 Shohada Street, POB: 37185/187 Qum, Islamic Republic of Iran. 28 Sunan Abudawud, Kitab al-Mahdi, Book 36, Number 4271: http://www.usc.edu/schools/college/crcc/engagement/resources/texts/muslim/hadith/abudawud/036.sat.html

2 comments:

rashidi said...

Dear Brother Kermani; Salaamon Alikom
The Freda Stauffer is a new Muslim with excellent studies but her work has done in Quran and Etrat Internet University.
university.etrat.net
My question: Will you put the university banner on your website for a while before the September 1? he university is non-profit one and manage with the helps of people and is free for registration (without any money ). We appreciate if you place our link in your website. In the meantime, we
would be more than happy if you could advise us how we could place our
banner in your site too.
Best Regards!
webmaster

Anonymous said...

Do you people have a facebook fan page? I looked for one on twitter but could not discover one, I would really like to become a fan!