إنًّهُم مِنّي وَ أَنا مِنهُم فَاجعَل صَلَواتِكَ وَ بَرَكاتِكَ وَ رَحمَتكَ و غُفرانَكَ وَ رِضوانَكَ عَلَيَّ وَ عَلَيهِم
They are part of me and I am part of them. Therefore (please) shower on me and them Your blessings, benedictions, mercy, forgiveness, and pleasure.
If a person wants to express proximity towards another person among the relatives, one way is to always remind them that they are from each other and belong to each other, especially if one of them already holds a noble and honorable position. And if the two parties happen to both enjoy a superior station and degree of excellence in terms of faith and religiosity, then logic dictates that they must seek each other’s proximity and association.
But if their spiritual association is coupled with their relation of kin, then the strength of the unity between the two parties intensifies and along with that their association becomes tighter.
The series of declarations which the Prophet (SA) just presented is followed by a summarizing statement which wraps up his main idea as he pronounces إنهم مني وأنا منهم (They are from me and I from them). There is no stronger statement that the Prophet (SA) can say which can convey how close his AhlulBayt are to him and the degree of their association such that they are no longer two separate entities.
Actually, the Prophet (SA) wants to convey that he and his purified household are ONE and the SAME and they are of the same origin, not just in terms of material or biological proximity, but also spiritually and intellectually as they are all from the same light.
When we are told that his AhlulBayt are from him, we can understand at the basic level why is that so due to the blood relation present. On one hand, it is a sign of humility of the Prophet that he shares with his AhlulBayt what he possesses of nobility, glory, and honor due to his status as the best of God’s creation.
On the other hand, the Prophet (SA) can never exaggerate or overestimate or blurt out a profound statement like this just for the sake of making a compliment. As we know, the Prophet (SA) does not speak out of his own will and every letter and word he utters is calculated and divinely approved. So when he clearly states that the AhlulBayt are from him, it indicates the grand level of piety and excellence which these members of the household have attained such that they have earned the reward of being “from the Prophet”.
No other person was given that honor among the companions of the Prophet (SA) except Salman Al Muhammadi who was an agent and trustee to the AhlulBayt (SA) to the end of his life-time and whose affinity to them was such that he was attached to them. His superior station was such that Prophet (SA) said in his regards, “Salman is from us, AhlulBayt.” (Sunan ibn Majah, Al Mustadrak, Musnad Ibn Hanbal)
This does not mean that he is one of them, but rather “from them” and associated to them. In fact, this honor of being “from the Prophet and his AhlulBayt” can also be attained by the pious believers as Imam Al Redha (AS) said, “Our Shia are from us, they were created from the remainder of our clay.”
Furthermore, if a person is told that they belong to and come from the same origin as a very esteemed and honorable personality or a saint whom they recognize their excellence in actions and behavior, it naturally encourages them to beautify themselves furthermore with the ornaments of good morals and virtues and certainly nothing from the ill traits and negative characteristics.
This may be a good reason why many of the children and progeny of the Prophets and Imams try to stay away from committing any wrong or inappropriate act since they recognize that their origin dictates that they act according to their noble ancestry and behave in their best possible conduct.
Although the purified AhlulBayt (AS) are themselves a beacon of light and are in no need of encouragement, one can imagine that this declared association between them and the Prophet further intensifies their existing love and desire to abide by the perfect code of values and behavior such that they practically achieve the status of being “from the Prophet”.
As explained in the book Min Fiqh Al Zahra by Imam Mohammad Al Husaini Al Shirazi, it is possible that one meaning intended by the words “They are from me and I am from them” is for Allah (SWT) to convey the point that He (SWT) created the AhlulBayt (AS) and brought them into existence for the sake of the Prophet. This is in agreement with the narration which states that “If it was not for the Prophet, Allah would not have created the planets and God’s analogues”, (Tafsir Ruh Al Ma’ani) and hence, no one would’ve been able to inhabit this life.
And the reverse may also be true, that if it was not for Ali and Fatima (peace be upon them), Allah (SWT) would not have created the Holy Messenger (SA). In essence, without the creation of the Prophet and his AhlulBayt (AS), the whole creation and universe is deficient and incomplete. And Allah (SWT) as we know is the Absolute Perfection and it is not possible for Him to create an incomplete creation.
Furthermore, if we can explain how the AhlulBayt (AS) is from the Prophet (SA), how can we explain that the Prophet (SA) himself is from them? This profound statement reminds us of the key statement the Prophet (SA) has said repeatedly about his grandson, “Husain is from me and I am from Husain.” (Al-Mustadrak) Surely, the blood of Husain is the same as the blood of the Prophet and the blood of the Prophet is also the blood of Husain.
So, whoever spills the blood of Husain (AS) has surely shed the very blood of the Messenger of Allah (SWT). And whoever slaughtered the flesh of Husain (AS) has surely slaughtered the flesh of the Prophet (SA). With that correlation made, one can imagine how great is the wrath and retribution that Allah (SWT) will incur on those who audaciously killed the grandson of the Holy Prophet (SA)!
In reference to the prophetic statement “Husain is from me and I am from Husain”, Shirazi explains in his book Min Fiqh Al Zahra that the outward meaning that the Prophet (SA) wants to convey is that: The Muhammadan Islam that is currently present can only continue and live on with Husain. And the same meaning may be interpreted from the expression “They are from me and I am from them.”
Also, one may consider the fact that the positive worldly reputation and high position which the AhlulBayt have in the hearts and thoughts of the people in this life is surely due to their close relation to the Holy Prophet (as we can naturally imagine).
Likewise, whatever veneration that Prophet (SA) has in the eyes of the people is due to the grand sacrifices which the AhlulBayt (AS) has offered and their committed and unrelenting efforts for the sake of the Prophet (SA) and for the religion of Islam.
Aside from the close-knit association which we can conclude from the words “They are from me and I am from them”, we may also deduce the presence of both Walayah Tashre’eya (legislative authority) and Walayah Takweeniya (universal or absolute authority) for the AhlulBayt (AS) and that is in addition to the many other proofs which indicate that, which is beyond the scope of this paper. As for the Walayah Al Tashre’eya, it means that the right of legislation is in their hands and this is in alignment with the prophetic narration where he says “Allah has disciplined His Prophet with His discipline and has given him authority over His religion”. (Bihaar Al Anwaar)
As for Walayah Al Takweeniya, it means that Allah (SWT) has given Prophet Muhammad (SA) and his household the mandate to run the universe or at least a part of it. It is the ability which is granted by Allah (SWT) to His beloved servants to achieve things which are out of the usual way. The AhlulBayt (AS) have the authority over the universe by the permission of Allah (SWT) and that is exactly what they are doing, just like Angel ‘Ezraeel executes the command of Allah (SWT) in taking away the lives.
We see examples of that divinely-bestowed authority as was the case with Prophet ‘Isa (AS) who cured those afflicted with leprosy and brought the dead back to life by the permission of Allah (SWT). The station of the AhlulBayt (AS) and the Imams from the progeny of Imam Husain (AS) is certainly greater than any of the prophets or messengers (with the exception of the Seal Messengers) and this is proven by the fact that Prophet ‘Isa (AS) will pray behind the 12th Awaited Imam (AFS) upon his reappearance.
A person may question why the Almighty Creator would grant such high level of authority to his creation and the answer to this valid question is answered by a sacred narration where Allah (SWT) says: “Oh My Servant, obey Me and you will be blessed; I say to something ‘Be and It is’ and you will say to a thing ‘Be and it will be’.”
The best of servants in Allah’s eyes are the Holy Prophet and his purified household (peace be upon them), so it is not surprising that they attain the status referred to in this narration and they are bestowed authority over that which Allah (SWT) has given them permission to execute His Will.
After the Prophet (SA) declared their status in relation to him, he transitions his speech into a supplication where he prays for them and for himself altogether and he says “Therefore (please) shower on me and them Your blessings, benedictions, mercy, forgiveness, and pleasure”. It is interesting to note that the Prophet says فاجعل with a prefix of “fa” (therefore) and then he presents five requests as mentioned in the above supplication.
It is as if the Prophet (SA) is saying that because he is from the AhlulBayt (AS) and they are from him and due to their elevated station that is raised even higher by virtue of their association and unity with each other, they now deserve to acquire the blessings of Allah (SWT) which includes benedictions, mercy, forgiveness, and pleasure.
Before we proceed to the next grand request which the Prophet (SA) makes, let us briefly screen the Holy Qur’an to find out whether Allah (SWT) has accepted the Prophet’s prayers and granted him what he asked for. When Prophet (SA) asked for blessings and benedictions, sure enough Allah (SWT) responded back with His acceptance as mentioned in the Qur’an:
.إنَّ اللَّهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّونَ عَلَى النَّبِيِّ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ وَسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا
“Surely Allah and His angels bless the Prophet; O you who believe! Call for (Divine) blessings on him and salute him with a (becoming) salutation.” (33:56)
Not only does Allah (SWT) Himself sends His divine blessings and benedictions on the Prophet, the angels also join the Almighty (SWT) in that great honor! In addition, Allah (SWT) orders all believers to do the same.
When the Prophet (SA) humbly prayed for forgiveness, Allah (SWT) confirmed His acceptance and forgiveness even though the Prophet and his AhlulBayt (peace be upon them) have not done anything wrong to request that forgiveness. So how does Allah (SWT) fulfill the prayer of the humble and infallible Prophet (SWT) if he does not have any sin? The answer to that is the acceptance of forgiveness on behalf of their devout followers and lovers.
إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُبِينًا. لِيَغْفِرَ لَكَ اللَّهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِكَ وَمَا تَأَخَّرَ وَيُتِمَّ نِعْمَتَهُ عَلَيْكَ وَيَهْدِيَكَ صِرَاطًا مُسْتَقِيمًا.
“Verily We have granted thee a manifest Victory. That Allah may forgive your community their past faults and those to follow and complete His favor to you and keep you on the Straight way.” (48:1-2)
And when the Prophet (SA) requested for pleasure (رضوان), Allah (SWT) verified the reciprocal status of pleasure for him and his purified household:
رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُمْ وَرَضُوا عَنْهُ ذَٰلِكَ الْفَوْزُ الْعَظِيمُ.
“Allah is well pleased with them and they are well pleased with Allah; this is the great triumph.” (5:119)