Ahlul-Bait and the Perverted Groups
The opponents of Islam realized that the Imam of Ahlul-Bait (a.s.) were the very embodiment of originality and purity and acted as a refuge for Muslims in time of distress and calamities. They have a special status and respect in the self of every Muslim who loves the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.). History tells us that diverse, deviated groups appeared, such as; the Zindiks, Exaggerators, Mazdakis, Jews, hypocrites, and even those who are affected with pagan thoughts which came either from the Magis, or from the philosophies of India, China, and Greece, and the like have used their different destructive attempts to deviate Islam and defame its illuminated face.
Some of these deviated groups have even slipped into the ranks of the school of Ahlul-Bait and claimed attachment to them in order to defame Islam and to pollute the right cause of Ahlul-Bait and its purity; like the Exaggerators and the Mazdakis who described the Imams of Ahlul-Bait through the attributes of Divinity and pretended that Allah, the Most Glorified, had transmigrated into the bodies of the Imams of the Ahlul-Bait (a.s.) and authorized the affair of the creation to them. But, the Imams of Ahlul-Bait (a.s.) stood firmly against such destructive and deviated beliefs and disclosed them to the people; strongly repudiated, cursed, dismissed and renounced them.
Among these deviated groups were: 'The Mughira Group', the followers of Mughira bin Sa'id and 'The Kattabiyah', the followers of Abi Khattab Muhammad bin Abi Zainab al-Assadi.
Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq, son of Imam al-Baqir (a.s.), is quoted to have said:
"May Allah curse Mughira bin Sa'id as he used to tell lies against my father, may Allah make him taste the heat of burning iron, may Allah curse those who say a bout us, what we do not say ourselves, may Allah curse those who try to take us away from the servitude of Allah, Who created us, and to Him is our return and in His hand is our control."(51)
He (a.s.) also said:
"Don't accept any saying (hadith) relating them to us except that which agrees with the Qur'an and the Prophetic traditions (sunnah) unless you see an evidence of our previous sayings with it; indeed Mughira bin Sa'id, may Allah curse him, has interpolated sayings (hadiths) in the books of the companions of my father of which he (my father) did not narrate them, so, fear Allah and don't accept any saying related to us, which disagrees with the statement of Our Lord, the Exalted, and the traditions of our Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) - because we, if we narrate any hadith, we always say: The Almighty Allah or the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w) said so and so."(52)
He (a.s.) further said:
"Mughira bin Sa'id was intentionally belying my father; he used to take the books of his companions, who disguised themselves to be of the companions of my father, and then, they gave them to Mughira who interpolated in them perverted beliefs of unbelief and infidelity and, then, attributed them to my father and therefore, returned them to his companions and ordered them to distribute them among the Shi'a; whenever there is any exaggeration in the books of the companions of my father, be sure that it is the act of Mughira bin Sa'id who interpolated them in his books."
Regarding the exaggeration and the interpolation of Abi Al-Khattab and his lie against the Imams of Ahlul-Bait, Imam Ali bin Musa al-Rida (a.s.) said:
"Indeed Abi Khattab used to tell lies against Abi Abdullah (Imam al-Sadiq) (a.s.), may Allah curse Abi Khattab, whereas his companions used to interpolate these sayings (hadiths) up until today in the books of Abi Abdullah (a.s.); therefore, don't accept any saying (hadith) related by them to us if they disagree with the Qur'an, because, all our sayings should agree with both the Qur'an and the Prophetic traditions."(53)
Thus, the Imams of Ahlul-Bait fought the Exaggerators and deviated groups. They called on the Muslims to hold fast to the Book of Allah (the Qur'an) and the pure Prophetic traditions so that they can differentiate between the illuminated path of Ahlul-Bait to which the followers of the school of the Imamiya Shi'a firmly adhered and the misguidance of the Exaggerators and their strayed beliefs.
The Ahlul-Bait's Method in the Political Field
Political action and thought forms a principal base among the pillars of Islam; Islam is a creed, system and legislation and its application in its social field needs a political authority, state and legitimate leadership. Therefore, this political action and thought takes, in the method of Ahlul-Bait, (a.s.) a high, important position which is based on foundations and principles; among them are: 1. The necessity of establishing an Islamic state and applying its laws.
2. The Muslim leader (Imam) is responsible for safeguarding Islamic laws, applying them and inviting others towards them. He is the political leader and guardian of the ideological line of the ummah (Islamic communities).
3. The Muslim leader (Imam) should be qualified with piety, behavioural righteousness, and be familiar with Islamic laws.
4. It is forbidden to obey or befriend the unjust ruler.
First, it is obligatory for the Muslims to advise him; if he does not respond, it becomes obligatory for the Muslims to boycott him, and if he does not respond, it becomes obligatory to depose him and revolt against him and pledge allegiance to a just ruler who acts according to the principles of the Book of Allah and the traditions of His Noble Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.)
These are the clear facts in the practical life of Ahlul-Bait and their struggle against the tyrannical rulers; their guiding and educating the masses of the ummah; preparing them to be conscious vanguards and their support for the movements and revolutions which adopted reform and change.
Among the prominant state of refusing oppression and corruption is the state of Imam Husein bin Ali (a.s.) against the government of Yazid bin Mu'awiyah and his declaration for an armed revolution against him; the support of Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.) for the revolution of Zayid bin Ali bin Husein in the year 121 A.H. against Husham bin Abdul-Malik; and the support of Imam Musa bin Ja'far for the revolution of Husein bin Ali in Madinah in the year 169 A.H. against the Abbasid caliph al-Mahdi.
The life of Ahlul-Bait (a.s.) is a continuation of the way in which the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) took and, also, a confirmation for it. Imam Husein, the martyr (a.s.) narrates from his grandfather, the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.), that he said: "Whoever witnesses an unjust ruler considering the prohibitions of Allah, the Almighty as permissible, breaking the covenant of Allah, opposing the practices of the Apostle of Allah (s.a.w.), treating his servants sinfully and cruelly and had seen all these misdeeds, but, did not oppose him by words or actions, Allah surely will punish him as he wills..."(54)
The life of the (Ahlul-Bait) (a.s.) and their words are a correction for the deviated way and falsified line which was founded by some unjust rulers and their preachers who supported and bowed down to them. They depended on some forged hadiths which were narrated by Muslim in his Sihah; for example, the following narration is mentioned in the above-mentioned book, in the chapter on the order for the necessity of performing prayer, collectively that the Messenger of Allah Muhammad, (s.a.w.) said:
"'After me there will be rulers who would not be guided aright nor follow my traditions and among them there will appear men whose hearts look like the hearts of Satans but in the body of human beings."
He asked: I said: O, Messenger of Allah, What shall I do, if I became aware of this? He (s.a.w.) said: 'You should listen and obey such rulers even if they beat your back or take your wealth, then you should listen and obey them '"(55)
All these forged sayings (hadiths) written by the tyrants, and their agents, forms a base for misunderstanding to the extent that some even built their political views on them. Nawawi in his explanation of Sahih Muslim said:
"The jurists and the narrators of Ahlul-Sunnah say: The ruler should not be deposed because of doing corrupt, oppressive, and wronging other's rights. (Such a ruler) should not be deposed nor revolted against, but it is obligatory to advise, and frighten him with the narrations concerning that."(56)
The Imams of Ahlul-Bait (a.s.) had a special position against such unjust rulers and they stood against such deviated political lines, therefore, these rulers began to use different kinds of tactics against them. Their (Ahlul-Bait) life is filled of illuminated images of sacrifice for the sake of faith and their history is the highest examplary of struggle for the sake of truth and who spent their best days between either being killed, poisoned, pursued on the earth or being punished in the darkness of prisons.
The Ahlul-Bait's Method in Educating their Companions
Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq (a.s.) is reported to have said:
"I dislike for a man to die while there is still a habit of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) which he has not yet practised."(57) The Ahlul-Bait took great care to educate the Muslims in accordance with the Book of Allah and the traditions of the Prophet, with the objective of building sound Islamic personalities that would hold aloft the torch of guidance. Imam Al-Baqir (a.s.) tried to efface the doubts instigated by some of his contemporaries who, had some mischievous intentions behind their effort. They used to say that it sufficed a Muslim to love the Ahlul-Bait and to regard them as leaders, and, in such a case, there was no need to keep up the other obligatory duties of what had commanded. The Imam explained that the path of the Ahlul-Bait meant putting into practice all that had been brought by the Qur'an, and shown by the Prophet (s.a.w.).
"...by Allah, we have no absolution from Allah, nor are we relatives of Allah, nor have we any argument against Allah. You cannot be nearer to Allah except through obedience. So, whoever is obedient (to Allah) will be benefitted by our friendship, and whoever is disobedient (to Him), our friendship will benefit him naught "(55)
Amru bin Sa'id bin Hilal narrates:
"I said to Abu Ja'far (a.s.): May I be your ransom, I only see you very rarely, after years. Please give me a piece of advice which I may follow.' Imam AI-Baqir replied: 'I advise you to fear Allah, to be pious and diligent. Do know that there can be no piety without diligent..."'(59) He also advised one of his followers, named Abu Usama, and told him to convey it to his friends. Here is an extract of the said advice: "...fear Allah and be good, and do not be bad, direct towards us every affection, and ward off from us every abomination, for we are not as they say. We have our rights in the Book of Allah, which were related to the Messenger of Allah and had been purified by Allah Our birth is so noble that anyone other than us claiming the like, is a liar.* Increase your remembrance of Allah, of death, of reciting the Qur'an and of sending blessings upon the Prophet (s.a.w.) as sending blessings on him is rewarded ten fold."(60)
- - This refers to their noble relations to the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) through their mother, Fatima al-Zahra' (a.s.), the Prophet's daughter. Imam al-Sadiq instructed one of his companions, Ismail bin Ammar, as follows:
"I advise you to fear Allah, to be pious, to be truthful, to pay your trusts, to be good to your neighbours and to be frequent in your prostration (prayers). Such were the orders of Muhammad (s.a.w.) to us."(61) Hisham bin Salim says that he heard Imam al-Sadiq (a.s.) tell a man called Hamran this:
"Look at the one who is lower than you (in position) and do not look at the one who is higher than you, as in this way you will be more satisfied with what is your lot, and more deserving of Allah's bounty. Do know that (good) routine deeds even if few are worthier than a regular deed lacking certainty. Do know that no piety is more beneficial than avoiding the prohibitions of Allah and refraining from wronging the people. Nothing is more pleasing than a good temper. No wealth is better than being content with the little which suffices. No ignorance is more bitter than conceit."(62)Imam Al-Sadiq (a.s.) also cites the Messenger of Allah as describing the believers: "Whoever is displeased with his evil deed while being pleased with his good deed, is a faithful man."(63) These are the true attributes of a good Muslim on the bases of Ahlul-Bait who strived hard to educate and establish them. This is their true method in building and educating the Muslim society and ummah. This is their true call through which they addressed the followers of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.) which was to follow the Book of Allah (the Qur'an) and the traditions of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) and to build life on their principles. How beautiful it is when a Muslim is guided aright through their guidance and follows their will and listens to the remembrance of them.