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  • 11/6/2011

Peshawar Nights: Talha and Zubair confront Ali at Basra

Eighth Session-part 3


*Talha and Zubair confront Ali at Basra

*Mu'awiya and 'Amr As used to curse and abuse Ali

*Sources of hadith "my companions are like stars" are weak

*Companions were not infallible

*Taking wine by ten companions in a secret meeting

*Companions' breaking pledge



Were Talha and Zubair not among the companions who pledged allegiance under the tree? Did they not oppose the rightful successor of the Holy Prophet, the acknowledged fourth caliph according to your own belief. Were not these companions responsible for the bloodshed of innumerable Muslims? Now please let us know which of these two groups of companions who fought with each other was the truly guided one. If you say that, since both groups were obedient both were on the right side, you will be wrong. It is impossible to claim that opposing factions are both guided.

It therefore follows that the companions who were on the side of Ali were definitely the guided ones. The group on the opposite side took the wrong way; and this is another proof to refute your statement that all those companions who were present in Bai'at-e-Rizwan, under the tree, were rightly guided. Among those who pledged fealty under the tree were these two, Talha and Zubair, who also fought against the rightful caliph. They actually fought against the one about whom the Holy Prophet had said: "O Ali, fighting against thee is fighting against me." Doesn't it amount to fighting against the Holy Prophet of Allah? So how can you say that the word Ashab or presence under the tree of allegiance is a guarantee for salvation?



Mu'awiya and 'Amr As were companions and yet they fought against the successor of the Holy Prophet and cursed and abused Ali at public meetings and even in the addresses given after Jum'a (Friday) prayers. They did so despite the fact, as reported by prominent ulema of your sect in their authentic books, that the Holy Prophet had repeatedly said, "He who abuses or curses Ali, abuses me. He who abuses me, abuses Allah."

The learned Taftazani has elaborately dealt with this topic in his Sharhe Maqasid. He writes that since the companions were inimical to one another, some of them had deviated from the right path. Some of them, on account of envy and worldly aspirations, perpetrated all kinds of cruelty. It is evident that most of the companions who were not ma'sum (infallible) committed heinous acts. But some ulema because they favored them, have tried to cover up their faults.

There are many clear arguments to reject the hadith in question. There is no doubt that this hadith is forged. Many of your ulema have expressed their doubts about the authenticity of its sources.



After quoting this hadith in his Sharhu'sh-Shifa, v.II, p.91, Qazi Ayaz says that Darqutni in his Faza'il and Ibn Abdu'l-Birr say that this hadith is not authentic.

It is also narrated from Abd Bin Hamid in his Musnad who quotes from Abdullah Ibn Umar that Bazar refused to acknowledge the authenticity of this hadith. Also he says that Ibn Adi quotes in his Kamil with his own references from Nafi, and he from Abdullah Ibn Umar, that the sources of this hadith are very weak. Baihaqi is also reported to have written that the matter of this hadith is commonly known but its sources are weak.

Among the sources of this hadith are Harith Bin Ghazin, whose character is unknown, and Hamza Ibn Abi Hamza Nussairi, who was charged with lying. The weakness of the hadith is evident. Ibn Hazm also says that this hadith is a fabricated one and is to be rejected.

So in our argument we cannot rely on a hadith with such a weak chain of sources. Even assuming, however, that the hadith were correct, it could not be applied in the general sense; it would refer only to the devoted and pious companions who, in accordance with the command of the Holy Prophet followed the book of Allah and the holy progeny of the Prophet.



Having said this, if I criticize some of the companions, you shouldn't consider me unjust. They were after all, human beings and were likely to err.

Hafiz: We also believe that the companions were not infallible, but at the same time it is an accepted fact that all of them were righteous people. No fault was committed by them.

Well-Wisher: You claim too much if you insist that they were all just and free from faults since in the authentic books written by your own ulema they argue against it. They tell us that even some of the chief companions sometimes committed faults.

Hafiz: We are not aware of such records. Please let us know about them if you can.

Well-Wisher: Ignoring what they did during the days of ignorance (i.e. before the advent of Islam), they committed many sins after they had embraced Islam. It is enough to mention only one event by way of example.

Your own prominent ulema write in their authentic books that in the year of the conquest of Mecca (8 A.H.) some of the leading companions indulged in festive amusements and gaiety and secretly took wine.

Hafiz: This is definitely a concocted story. When drinking was announced to be unlawful, the respected companions did not so much as attend such parties, not to mention drinking wine.

Well-Wisher: It was never concocted by opponents. If it was concocted at all, it was done by your own ulema.

Nawab: If there were such a party, the names of the host and the guests also must have been mentioned. Can you explain that point?

Well-Wisher: Yes, your own ulema have explained it.



Ibn Hajar writes in his Fathu'l-Bari, v.X, p.30, that Abu Talha Zaid Bin Sahl arranged a wine party at his house and invited ten people. All of them drank wine and Abu Bakr recited some couplets commemorating some infidels who were killed in the battle of Badr.

Nawab: Have the names of the guests also been mentioned? If so, please let us know.

Well-Wisher: (1) Abu Bakr Bin Abi Qahafa, (2) Umar Ibn Khattab, (3) Abu Ubaida Garra, (4) Ubai Bin Ka'b, (5) Sahl Bin Baiza, (6) Abu Ayyub Ansari, (7) Abu Talha (the host), (8) Abu Dajjana Samak Bin Kharsa, (9) Abu Bakr Bin Shaghuls, (10) Anas Bin Malik, who was 18 years old at that time and who served the wine.

 Baihaqi in his Sunan, v. VIII, p.29, has also narrated from Anas him self that he said that he was the youngest of them at that time and was serving the wine. (At this there was great commotion in the meeting.)

Sheikh: I swear by Allah that this story has been concocted by the enemy!

Well-Wisher: You are too much agitated and you have made a profane oath! But you are not totally at fault. Your studies are limited. If you had read more widely, you would know that your own ulema have written all this. Now you should seek Allah's pardon.

I am now constrained to explain facts according to the statements of your own ulema. Muhammad Bin Isma'il Bukhari in Sahih (commenting on Ayat-e-Khamr, "verse concerning wine", in the chapter Ma'ida of the Qur'an); Muslim Ibn Hajar in his Sahih (Kitab-e-Ashraba Bab-e-Tahrimu'l-Khamr); Imam Ahmad Bin Hanbal in his Musnad, v.XXX, p.181 and 227; Ibn Kathir in his Tafsir, v.XI, p.93; Jalalu'd-din Suyuti in his Durru'l-Mansur, v.II, p.321; Tabari in his Tafsir, v.VII, p.24; Ibn Hajar Asqalani in his Isaba, v.IV, p.22 and Fathu'l-Bari, v.X,p.30; Badru'd-din Hanafi in his Umdatu'l-Qari, V.X, p.84; Baihaqi in his Sunan, pp.286 and 290; and others have recorded these facts with detailed explanations.

Sheikh: Perhaps these things took place before wine was made unlawful.

Well-Wisher: What we gather from the commentary and history shows that even after the prohibitory verses some Muslims and companions continued taking forbidden wine.

Muhammad Bin Jarir Tabari reports in Tafsir-e-Kabir, v.II, p.203, on the authority of Abil Qamus Zaid Bin Ali, who said that Allah had revealed three times the verses prohibiting the use of wine. In the first verse He says, "They ask you about intoxicants and games of chance. Say: In both of them there is a great sin and means of profit for men, and their sin is greater than their profit." (2:219)

But the Muslims did not immediately give up wine. When two men, being intoxicated, offered their prayers and talked nonsense, another verse was revealed, saying: "O you who believe! do not go near prayer when you are intoxicated until you know (well) what you say." (4:43)

Even after this, the drinking of wine continued, but people did not offer prayers while intoxicated. One day a man took wine (according to the report of Bazar, Ibn Hajar, and Ibn Mardawiyya the man was Abu Bakr) and composed an elegy for the pagans who were killed in the battle of Badr. When the Holy Prophet heard of this, he became angry. He went to the party and wanted to beat him. The man said, "I seek Allah's shelter from Allah's and His Prophet's wrath. Allah be my witness, I will not take wine again." Then the following verse was revealed: "O you who believe! intoxicants and games of chance and (sacrificing to) stones set up and (divination by) arrows are only an uncleanness, the Shaitan's work; shun it therefore that you may be successful." (5:90)

Among the companions of the Holy Prophet there were good and bad men just as there are among other believers and Muslims. Those of them who tried to obey Allah and His Prophet reached an exalted rank. Those who followed their worldly aspirations were looked down upon by others. So those who fault the worldly companions do so with some reason. The wicked actions of some of the sahaba which are recorded in the authentic books of your own ulema are also condemnable according to the evidence of the Holy Qur'an. The Shias condemn them on that basis. If there is a logical reply to this argument, we are ready to accept it.



Well-Wisher: It is astonishing that even after hearing their condemnable qualities (I have mentioned only a few out of a large number) you still ask me about their misdeeds! Now I should like to submit another example of their odious actions, which are recorded in all the books of both the sects: the breaking of their pledge. Allah has made it compulsory to keep one's promise. He says: "And fulfill the covenant of Allah when you have made a covenant, and do not break the oaths after making them fast." (16:91)

And again Allah has called those who break a pledge the cursed ones. He says: "And those who break the covenant of Allah after its confirmation and cut asunder that which Allah has ordered to be joined and make mischief in the land; (as for) those, upon them shall be a curse, and they shall have the evil issue of the abode. (13:25)

So it is clear both from the Qur'anic verses and from a large number of hadith that breaking a pledge is a great sin, particularly a pledge made with Allah and His Prophet. The seriousness of this offense was graver for the companions of the Holy Prophet.

Hafiz: What pledge with Muhammad did the companions break? How can it come under the target of the Qur'anic verses?

I think that if you consider the matter carefully you will admit that all these things are sheer concoctions of the Shias. The companions of the Holy Prophet were free from all such actions.



Well-Wisher: I have told you repeatedly that the Shias are pledged to follow their leaders. Otherwise they cannot be Shias. The Holy Qur'an has given evidence of their leader's truthfulness. Your prominent ulema, for instance, Imam Tha'labi and Jalalu'd-Din Suyuti in their Tafsir, Hafiz Abu Nu'aim Ispahani in his Ma Nazal mina'l-Qur'an fi Ali, Khatib Khawarizmi in Manaqib, Sheikh Sulayman Balkhi Hanafi in Yanabiu'l-Mawadda, ch.39, narrating from Khawarizmi, Hafiz Abu Nu'aim and Hamwaini and Muhammad Bin Yusuf Ganji Shafi'i in Kifayatu't-Talib, ch.62 - all of them have quoted from the history of the great scholar Muhaddith-e-Sham that in the holy verse "O you who believe! be careful of (your duty to) Allah and be with the truthful ones." (9:119)

The truthful ones refers to Muhammad and Ali. So the followers of this exalted family cannot be liars or forgers because he alone would tell lies or fabricate stories who has no true and strong reasons to fall back upon this cause. What the Shias say has been written by your own ulema. First you should object to your ulema, who wrote these things. Had your ulema not written about the pledge-breaking of the sahaba in their authentic books, I would not have mentioned it in this meeting.

Hafiz: Who of the Sunni ulema has written that the sahaba broke the pledge. Simply vain talking won't do.

Well-Wisher: I am not merely talking. My argument is completely logical. The companions broke their pledge a number of times. They broke the fealty for which the Prophet of Allah had commanded them; the most important was the pledge and fealty at Ghadir-e-Khum.

Source: al-islam.org

Other Links:

Peshawar Nights: Characteristics of the Companions  

Peshawar Nights: Hadith that both Hasan and Hussein are foremost of youth of paradise

Peshawar Nights: Holy Prophet preferred Ali to all other men 

Peshawar Nights: Argument from the Verse of Cave and its reply  

Peshawar Nights: 300 Hundred verses in praise of Ali  

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