Letter 14

Thul-Qi’da 1329

I. Fallacy of Opponent's Argument

1) Our answer is that the argument of such opponents is wrong. It is baseless because of the fallacy of its minor and major arguments.

As for its minor argument, that is, the claim that "Those who narrated the verses concerning your argument are Shi’a" is obviously false as testified by reliable Sunni authorities who recorded their statements in the meaning which we have stated. Their musnads testify to the fact that they are even more in number than Shi’as, as we explained in our book Tanzilul Ayat al­Bahira, in our chapter titled "Virtues of the Purified ‘itra." You may also refer to Ghayatul Maram which is widely circulated throughout the Muslim world.

As for the major one, that is, the claim that Shi’as are not regarded by Sunnis as reliable (in narrating hadith), its fallacy is even more obvious than that of the minor one. Sunni Musndads bear testimony to this fact, and the authorities they relied upon are full of Shi’a names.

Take, for example, their six sahih books and others which use them as their authorities, the latter being charged by those who attribute to them deviation from the Right Path, stamp them with the stamps of "Rafidis" and "deviators." To them have they attributed extremism, fanaticism, and deviation from the Path.

Among Bukhari's mentors are Shi’a men who have been charged with being "Rafidi" and stamped with hatred; nevertheless, this has never made Bukhari nor others doubt their fair­mindedness. The latter relied upon them even in the sahih books feeling very comfortable with doing so. So; will the opponents who say that "Shi’as are not relied upon by Sunnis" find a listening ear? Of course not!

II. Opponents do not Know Shi’as

2) Such opponents, however, are ignorant. Had they known the truth, they would have come to know the fact that Shi’as have followed in the footsteps of and have emulated the Purified ‘itra. Their manners are the ‘itra's; therefore, everyone they relied upon is unmatchable in truthfulness and trustworthiness. Unmatchable are their reliable heroes in piety and caution.

There are no peers for them among their dependable dignitaries in their forsaking the pleasures of this world, in their piety, worship, good manners, self­discipline, self­denial, and self­criticism. Nobody can equal them in ascertaining facts and looking for them with extreme care and moderation.

Had the opponent assessed their value, just as it is in reality, he would have put his confidence in them, entrusting his affairs to them. But his ignorance of them has made him wander at random about them like one riding a blind animal in a dark night.

He would charge the trustees of Islam such as Muhammad ibn Ya’qub al­Kulayni, and a truthful among Muslims like Muhammad ibn ‘Ali ibn Babawayh al­Qummi, and a mentor of the nation such as Muhammad ibn al­Hasan ibn ‘Ali al­Tusi.

He would belittle their sacred books which are the custodians of the knowledge of the family of Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him and them, doubting their mentors who are the pioneers of knowledge and the ones who equal the Holy Qur'an and who have dedicated their lives to promote the teachings of Allah, the Sublime, the Almighty, His book and His Messenger, peace be upon him and his progeny, and the Imams of Muslims and their commoners.

III. Distinction of Emphasizing Illegality of Falsifying Hadith

3) Both righteous and vicious individuals have equally come to know how these virtuous men judge the case of telling lies. Thousands of their books curse lying, labelling falsification of hadith as sins punishable by Hell-fire. They are distinguished by their judgment of intentional falsification of hadith. They have considered it to break the fast, requiring both compensation and penitence from the person who commits it during the month of Ramadan, and they also require the same for whatever causes the breaking of the fast.

Their Fiqh and hadith are very clear in this regard; therefore, how can anybody charge their narrators while they are the good, the virtuous, the ones who spend the night praying and the day fasting? Since when have the virtuous among the followers and supporters of Muhammad's family been charged, while the Kharijis, Murji'is and Qadris have not? What other than obvious enmity and ugly ignorance?

We seek refuge with Allah against forsaking us, and from Him do we seek help against the bad consequences of injustice and oppression. There is no might nor power except in Allah, the Sublime, the Almighty, and peace be with you.