Ibn Abi'l-Hadid Mu'tazali quotes a report from his leader and
teacher, Abu Ja'far Iskafi Baghdadi, in his Sharh-e-Nahju'l- Balagha,
vol. I, p.358, that Mu'awiya Bin Abu Sufyan had formed a group
of companions and the 'tabi'in' (the 'second' generation which
immediately followed the Prophet) for the purpose of forging hadith
in condemnation of Ali. Their purpose was to make him a target
of reproach so that the people would keep aloof from him. Among
them were Abu Huraira, Amr Bin As, Mughira Bin Shaiba, Urwa Bin
Zubair, one of the tabi'in was also with them. Abu Ja'far Iskaf
has also referred to some of their fabricated hadith. Speaking
about Abu Huraira, he says that he was the man who narrated a
hadith purporting to show that Ali sought to take Abu Jahl's daughter
in marriage during the time of the Holy Prophet. This made the
Holy Prophet angry, and he said from the pulpit, "A friend
of Allah and an enemy of Allah cannot be together. Fatima is a
part of my body. He who grieves her grieves me. He who wants to
marry Abu Jahl's daughter should seek separation from my daughter."
After this, Abu Ja'far says that this hadith is known as the hadith
of Karabisi', since every baseless hadith is called 'karabisi'
(literally 'a clothes-seller'). Ibn Abi'l-Hadid says that this
hadith is reported in the two Sahihs of Bukhari and Muslim from
Miswar Bin Makhrama az-Zahr. And Seyyed Murtaza Alamu'l-Huda,
who was one of the greatest ulema of the Shias, says in his book
Tanzia'u'l-Anbia wa'l-A'imma that this report was narrated by
Husain Karabisi, who is known for his extreme opposition to the
holy ahle bait. He belonged to the Nawasib and was one of the
bitterest enemies of this exalted family. His report is not acceptable.
According to hadith recorded in your own authentic books, Ali's
enemy is a munafiq (hypocrite). The munafiq, according to the
Holy Qur'an, is an infernal being. Therefore his report is without
Besides this, the hadith condemning people who caused annoyance
to Fatima, are not confined to Karabisi's statement or the forged
report by Abu Huraira about Abu Jahl's daughter. There are many
other hadith on this topic. Among them is one reported by Parsa
of Bukhara in his Faslu'l-Khitab; one by Imam Ahmad Bin Hanbal
in Musnad and by Mir Seyyed Ali Hamadani Shafi'i in Mawadda XIII
of Mawaddatu'l-Qurba, on the authority of Salman Muhammadi, that
the Holy Prophet said: "Fatima's love is useful to us in
a hundred places, the easiest of them being Death, the Grave,
the Mizan (the Balance), Sirat (the bridge) and the Questioning.
So, if my daughter, Fatima, is pleased with somebody, I am also
pleased with him. If I am pleased with somebody, Allah is also
pleased with him. If my daughter, Fatima, is displeased with somebody,
I am also displeased with him. If I am displeased with him, Allah
is also displeased with him. Woe be to him who oppresses Fatima
and her husband. Woe be to him who oppresses Ali and Fatima and
I ask you what conclusion you draw in light of these authentic
hadith and the hadith recorded by Bukhari and Muslim that Fatima
remained indignant with Abu Bakr and Umar until she died.
Hafiz: The hadith are of course
correct and are recorded in detail in our authentic books. In
fact, I also doubted Karabisi's report that Ali wanted to ask
Abu Jahl's daughter to marry him. I did not believe it, and now
I am indeed thankful that you have solved this problem for me.
Second, in these hadith "indignation" means religious
indignation and not ordinary worldly indignation. Her indignation
regarding Abu Bakr and Umar, which is recorded in all our reliable
books, was not religious. That is, Fatima did not feel angry with
Abu Bakr and Umar because they violated any religious injunction.
Of course, if anyone had aroused her religious indignation, he
would have been subject to his Prophet's curse.
But in fact Fatima's anger resulted from a change in her condition, which every sensitive person feels when he fails to achieve his object. Since Fatima had made a request for Fadak and the Caliph did not accept her claim, she was naturally affected by it and felt indignant at that time. But later this slight displeasure disappeared from her mind, and she was satisfied with the decision of the Caliph. The proof of her satisfaction was her silence. And when Ali took the reins of the caliphate, he did not for all his supreme authority, take back Fadak under his control. This, too, is proof that he was satisfied with the decision of the previous caliphs.
Well-Wisher: First, you said
that Fatima's anger was not religious but worldly. You have expressed
this view without careful study. According to the principles of
the Qur'anic verses and the hadith of the Holy Prophet, no perfect
believer would ever show such an indignation, not to speak of
Fatima, whose eminence is evident from the "Verse of Purity":
"Verse of Mubahala" and the Sura Hal Ata of the Holy
There are numerous hadith in your and our authentic books that
Fatima occupied the highest rank of iman (belief) and that the
Holy Prophet had explicitly said about her: "Verily, Allah
has filled my daughter, Fatima, with belief from head to foot."
Any believer, man or woman, whose special mark is to admit the
truth, would never show any indignation when a judge issues a
just order. Nor would such a believer cling to that anger and
wrath till his death insisting in his will that none of those
who were in any way connected with those orders should be allowed
to join in his funeral prayers.
Moreover Fatima, about whose purity Allah Himself gives evidence,
could never make a false claim, so that a judge might reject her
Second, if Lady Fatima's indignation was merely "worldly
indignation" as you call it, or her disappointment in having
her claim rejected, her anger should have subsided soon, particularly
after the regret shown by those responsible for her anger. There
should have been no grief in her heart. The Holy Prophet said:
"One of the signs of a believer is that he does not naturally
nurse any grudge based on carnal sentiments, against anybody."
Also the Holy Prophet said: "If a believer happens to commit
a fault, the aggrieved believer does not feel antipathy towards
him for more than three days." So the pure and truthful Fatima
Zahra, who was, according to the testimony of Allah Almighty,
imbued with faith from head to foot, could never bear malice against
anybody. And it is acknowledged by both sects that Fatima left
this world angry with Abu Bakr and Umar. So it follows from this
that Fatima's indignation was purely religious. When she saw that
the order was passed against her in violation of the commands
of Allah and her holy father, she felt furious with religious
displeasure and this was that anger, which incurred Allah's and
His Prophet's wrath.
Third, You have said that since Fatima's silence meant that she
acquiesced in the decision. Here again you are mistaken. Silence
does not necessarily mea nconcurrence. Sometimes the oppressor's
rigidity forces acquiescence.
Fatima was not only grieved, but she left this world indignant.
Both Bukhari and Muslim wrote: "Fatima was indignant with
Abu Bakr. She kept aloof from him and did not talk with him for
the rest of her life."
Fourth, you said that because Ali did not, during the period of
his caliphate, take possession of Fadak and return it to the descendants
of Fatima, this indicated his acquiescence in the decision of
the previous caliphs. Even here you are mistaken. The Holy Imam
was not free to act during the period of his caliphate so as to
have stopped any innovation or restore any right. Whenever he
intended to take such a step, there was immediate opposition.
If he had returned Fadak to the descendants of Fatima, his opponents,
particularly Mu'awiya and his followers, would have claimed that
Ali acted against the practices adopted by Abu Bakr and Umar.
Besides this, in order to pass such orders, authority and independence
were necessary. But people had not allowed him such power. He
could not introduce anything which would have violated the precepts
and practices of the previous caliphs. Ali's powerlessness is
evident from the following two examples.
Since the previous caliphs had removed the pulpit from its place
where the Prophet had placed it, the Holy Imam intended to return
it to its original place. But the people opposed him and would
not tolerate anything contrary to the practice of Abu Bakr and
Umar, even though it might be compatible with the practice of
the Holy Prophet.
Similarly, when the Holy Imam forbade the people to offer congregational
tarawih prayers, they rose against him and claimed that Ali wanted
to change the way of Caliph Umar.
Nawab: Respected Sir! What was
tarawih, which Ali forbade be offered in congregation?
Well-Wisher: Literally tarawih
is the plural of tarawia, which meant "sitting." Later
it came to mean "sitting for rest" after the four rak'ats
of prayer during the Ramadhan nights. Then it came to mean four
rak'ats of recommended prayer. It is a clear ruling of Islamic
jurisprudence that only obligatory prayers may be offered in congregation,
whereas recommended prayers in congregation are prohibited. The
Holy Prophet himself said: "Verily, the offering of nafila
(recommended prayers) in congregation during the nights of Ramadhan
is an innovation. The Namaz-e-Chasht (sometimes called Dhuha and
recited in the forenoon) is a sin. O people! do not say nafila
prayers of Ramadhan in congregation, and do not offer Namaz-e-Chasht.
To be sure, performing a minor act of worship which is according
to the sunna is better than performing a major act of worship
which is an innovation. Let it be known to you that every innovation
is a transgression and every transgression leads to Hell."
One night during the period of his caliphate in 14 A.H. Umar entered
the mosque. He saw that the people had gathered there. He asked
them why they had come together. The people said that they had
assembled to offer sunna prayers. Umar said: "This performance
is an innovation, but it is a good innovation."
Bukhari quotes in his Sahih from Abdu'r-Rahman Bin Abdu'l-Qari
that when the caliph saw the people offering prayers individually,
he told them that congregational prayer was preferable. He ordered
Ubayy Bin Ka'b to lead the prayers in congregation. When he came
to the mosque on the next night, he saw the people offering congregational
prayers in obedience to his command. He said: "How good an
innovation it is."
It became the common practice until the time of Amiru'l-Mu'minin.
He prohibited it, saying that since it did not exist in the time
of the Holy Prophet, it was then forbidden; in fact it should
not be allowed to continue.
When he came to Kufa, the Kufans asked the Holy Imam to appoint
for them an Imam to lead the nafila prayers during the nights
of Ramadhan. The Imam forbade them to offer that prayer in congregation.
In spite of that, since the people had been accustomed to it,
they did not follow the Imam's order. As soon as the Imam left
that place, they gathered together and appointed one of them to
lead the prayers in congregation. The news soon reached the Holy
Imam, who called his eldest son Imam Hasan and asked him to take
a dagger and forbid those people to offer recommended prayers
in congregation. When the people saw this, they made loud cries
saying: "O Ali! Hasan has come, and he does not allow us
to offer prayers."
Although they knew that this practice of offering communal recommended
prayers did not exist during the time of the Holy Prophet, they
did not follow Ali's command which conformed with the orders of
the Holy Prophet.
So how could Ali restore Fadak to the descendants of Fatima? If
he had done so and said that it had been unjustly confiscated,
the people would have cried that Ali Bin Abi Talib was inclined
towards the world and was usurping the right of the Muslims for
their own descendants. Hence, he thought it proper to be patient.
Since the real claimant had left this world, he suspended his
claim to it, so that when the last of the divinely guided Imams
comes to restore rights to their just claimants, he will secure
In such a state of affairs the silence of the holy Imam did not
mean that he was satisfied with the decision. If he had considered
the action of the previous caliphs just, he would not have argued
his case before them. Also, he would not have expressed his anguish
and displeasure and would not have invoked Allah to be the arbiter.
It is recorded in Nahju'l-Balagha that Ali in a letter to the
Governor of Basra, Uthman Bin Hunaif Ansari wrote: "Among
those things on which the sky casts its shadow was Fadak, which
was in our possession. But a group showed niggardliness and the
other side, Fatima, and her descendants withdrew from pursuing
their claim. And the best Judge is Allah."
You said that Fatima was satisfied with the decision in the last
days of her life and pardoned those responsible for it. I am afraid
you are mistaken here. As has been proved beyond doubt earlier
through reliable hadith that oppressed Lady remained indignant
until she died.
To prove my point of view I should like to submit the following
report. Abu Muhammad Abdullah Bin Muslim Bin Qutayba Dinawari
(died 276 A.H.) in his Ta'rikh-e-Khilafa'i'r-Rashidin, known as
Al-Imama wa's-Siyasa, vol. I, p. 14 and others of your ulema,
like Ibn Abi'l-Hadid, write in their authentic books:
"Umar asked Abu Bakr to go with him to visit Fatima. They
had certainly enraged her. (Some reports say that it was Abu Bakr,
who asked Umar to go with him to visit Fatima. This seems more
In short, both of them went together to the door of Fatima but
she did not allow them to visit her. When they asked Ali to intervene,
he remained silent, but he allowed them to go in. When they went
in and saluted her, she turned her face to the wall. Abu Bakr
said: 'O part of the Prophet's liver, by Allah, I value the relationship
of the Holy Prophet with you more than my relationship with my
daughter, A'yesha. Would that I had died soon after the Holy Prophet
of Allah. I know your rank and position more than any one else.
If I have deprived you of your right of heritage, it was really
because of the Holy Prophet, whom I myself heard saying: 'We prophets
do not leave any heritage. What we leave is charity (for the Muslims).'
Fatima then said to Amiru'l-Mu'minin that she would remind them
of a hadith of the Holy Prophet and ask them to say in the name
of Allah if they had not heard the Holy Prophet saying it: 'Fatima's
pleasure is my pleasure, Fatima's indignation is my indignation.
So one who loves my daughter Fatima loves me; one who pleases
Fatima, pleases me. One who offends Fatima, offends me.'
Both of them said: 'Yes we heard these words from the Holy Prophet
of Allah.' Then Fatima said: 'I call Allah and His Angels to witness
that both of you have offended me and did not treat me justly.
When I meet the Holy Prophet I will certainly complain to him
of you both.'
Abu Bakr, being troubled at these words, began to weep and said:
'I seek Allah's shelter from the Holy Prophet's anger.' Fatima
began to weep and said: 'I swear by Allah that I will certainly
call down curses upon you in all my prayers.'
After hearing this, Abu Bakr went out, weeping. People gathered
round him and consoled him. To them he said: 'Woe be to you. You
are all happy, sitting with your wives comfortably, but I am in
this wretched state. I do not need your allegiance. Rid me of
it. By Allah, after what I have seen and heard from Fatima, I
do not want any Muslim to suffer the burden of allegiance to me.'"
These reports, related by your own notable ulema, show that the
oppressed Fatima remained indignant with Abu Bakr and Umar until
the last hour of her life.
The clearest proof of Fatima's anger in this regard is that she
made the following will to her husband, Amiru'l-Mu'minin Ali:
"None of those persons who have oppressed me and snatched
away my right should be allowed to join my funeral. They are certainly
my and the Holy Prophet's enemies. Do not allow any one of them
or their associates to offer funeral prayers for me. Bury me at
night when people are asleep."
Bukhari writes in his Sahih that Ali complied with Lady Fatima's
will and buried her at night quietly. People tried their best
to find where Fatima was buried, but they could not. It is unanimously
accepted that Fatima was, according to her will, buried at night.
The Holy Prophet left a single daughter to serve as his memory.
Your own ulema agree that he said: "Fatima is a part of my
body. She is my legacy and trust. Respect her as you respect me.
Never do anything to incite her anger against you. If she is angry
with you, I also will be angry with you."
Mir Seyyed Ali Hamadani Faqih Shafi'i writes in his Mawaddatu'l-Qurba
that the Holy Prophet said: "Those who grieve Fatima will
be strictly dealt with by me on the Day of Judgment. Fatima's
pleasure is my pleasure, and Fatima's anger is my anger. Woe be
to him with whom Fatima is indignant."
How tragic is it that for all these declarations, the Community not only ignored her but also snatched away her right and caused her so intense torment. Even while still a young woman, she declared: "I was subjected to so many troubles that if days had been subjected to such troubles, they would have turned into nights."