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The event that took place in Saghifeh

lady Fatima

The Ansârs, after the death of our Prophet, decided to organize a meeting in a place called " Saghifeh Bani Sâêdeh " to choose and name their calife. But the immigrants [ Abubakr, Omar and Abu Obeydeh Jarrâh were their leaders ] soon knew of this meeting, and they came to talk and negiotiate with the Ansârs.

The immigrants wanted desperately to rob the Leadership from the Ansârs, and to come to power themselves, So, to persuade the other party, they talked of many things with them.

Finally, they decided to choose Abubakr, as the rightful calife. In the midst of it all, there came an old man who, seeing that he had no choice but to reunite with Abubakr, told. him:" It's like the day of Adam..." [That is: as Satan was forced to adore Adam, he suddenly refused to do so; and the same was being repeated there and then, and by doing this, all the human race was surely to be forced out of Heaven...] Now, outside Saghifeh, Ali was busy with the Prophet's funeral. Suddenly Salmânê Fârsi came and told him about the reunion of some of the immigrants with the Ansârs, and the leadership of Abubakr.

Ali, after having finished all the preparations that was needed for that holy funeral, stopped to perform his prayer in front of the sanctified body of our Prophet. Many people came to show their dutiful respect to the Messenger of God for the last time’ and to perform the prayer of the dead before his sanctified body and to bid him farewell...

Afterwards, Ali did not linger with the mourners who had gathered there to show their loyalty to him. But unfortunately, the majority of Muslims had given their oath to Abubakr.

Afterwards, when they saw Fâtêmeh, they used to say most peevishly: " We would rather have given our oath to your dignified husband than to Aboubakr...

But Abubakr was the first to ask for our allegiance to him..."

And Fâtemeh replied:" What you mean is that my husband should have left the sanctified body of my respectful and beloved father as it was lain on the floor, untouched, and that he should have come rapidly to you, to ask for your allegiance...?! You mean to tell me that he should have left my beloved father, without the benefice of preparing him a dignified funeral?! You mean to tell me that he should have. Thought about his leadership, and begin a dispute for this earthly matter, instead of mourning my father?! All right... May God remember your actions, and take measure for your deeds! "

After a while, the responsible of that conspiracy decided to make Ali swear allegiance to them, so as to empower their fragile yet strong new position.

But Ali, by pretending that he was collecting all the sourates of the Holy Ou'rân replied:" I have sworn solemnly that until I have not collected all the sourates of the Holy Ou’rân, and until I have not set them right, not to go out of my home and not to put my cloak [ Abâ ] on my shoulders... “so he refused firmly to swear allegiance to them. Unfortunately, the enemies had made a plan in case Ali would refuse to join them.

Someone by the name of Ghanfaz and his gang came in front of Ali’s house to take him by force to the mosque, so that he swear allegiance to the new calife. But they were faced with Fâtemeh's refusal to open the door. With a sign from Omar Ibn'l Khatâb, the hateful servants of these men, with the leadership of Ghanfaz, made a fire and burnt the entrance door. Then they y kicked the burnt out door aside... But what of it?

The door opened all right, but by having been shut open, the peg of the door encountered with Fâtemeh's fragile blossom and hurt deeply the beautiful flower of the household of Mohammad...

Suddenly the enemy entered the house. One hand on the sword, the other hand on the whip...

Fâtemeh on seeing this, cried out loud: " 0 Father! 0 Messenger of God! " The enemy took out his sword, and with the width of his weapon, pushed her hard towards the wall, so much so that the ribs of this sweet, beloved lady, broke, and it resulted in a miscarriage... The stillborn would have been a boy named Mohssen, even though it wasn't born yet...

Fâtemeyeh Zahrâ hurt so much that she fell on the floor, and began sobbing and crying out to her maid:

" O Fezzeh! Help me… I swear to God that I have a miscarriage... " They then put a cord on Hazratê Ali’s neck, to take him by force to the Mosque. Fâtemeh pushed herself up, so that she could take the hem of Ali’s clothes, and make him stay. But the hateful Ghanfaz, on seeing this, slashed Fâtemeh's arm with his whip so violently that her arm swelled at once...

On the way to the mosque, a jewish man, upon seeing Hazratê Ali, greeted him most respectfu1ly, and suddenly began to say the proper sentences [ The Shahadateyn ] so as to become a Muslim.

Somebody asked him:" What made you believe the truth about Islam? " He answered promptly:" It was the innocence I perceived in Hazratê Ali’Being… "

They took Hazratê Ali to the mosque and told him: " If you don't swear your allegiance to the new calife, we will behead you surely! "

Hazratê Ali replied to them:" If you do this, not only have you undoubtedly murdered a servant of God, but also the brother of our Prophet... "

Fâtemeh, after receiving such a terrible blow from her enemy, had fallen on the floor and lost conscience ness for a while. But after some time, she opened her eyes and said: " Fezzeh! Where is my lord, Ali? "

Her servant answered her sadly:" O milady! They took him to the mosque! " Fâtemeh took the hrfnds of her two little sons Hassan and Hosseyn, and there she entered the mosque and began making a little speech, there and then.

She said:" Leave my cousin and husband alone! Otherwise I will discover my

hair to show my utter desperation and grief in this very place... I have put the

very cloth that the Prophet used to wear, on my head, and then will go to the

grave of my father and will complain against you all! "

The fiery words of Fâtemeh, with the refusal of Hazratê Ali to swear his allegiance, and the arrival of the faithful friends of the Messenger of God in that moment, made the enemies to retreat, and they were forced to let Hazratê Ali go his way... By what is written officially, this event took place exactly six days after the death of the Prophet…

Farideh Mahadavi-Damghani

August 2001

[ from Tir Publishing ]



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