Caliphate

A caliphate (Arabic: خِلافة‎ khilāfah) is an Islamic state under the leadership of an Islamic steward with the title of caliph (; Arabic: خَليفة‎ khalīfah, pronunciation ), a person considered a religious successor to the Islamic prophet Muhammad and a leader of the entire ummah (community).

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Amina Inloes, Amina Inloes is originally from the US and has a PhD in Islamic Studies from the University of Exeter on Shi'a hadith. She is the program leader for the MA Islamic Studies program at the... Answered 2 months ago

Absolutely not.

Perhaps you are familiar with the narration attributed to the Prophet (S):

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Al-Qummi indicates on page 432, Vol. 2, of his Tafsir, that the Messenger of Allah (S) once saw in a vision monkeys climbing over his pulpit, and he felt very distressed; thereupon, the chapter of Qadr was revealed to remove his distress. The period of Banu Umayyad's government lasted roughly a thousand months: from 661 to 750 A.D., with the first ruler being Abu Sufyan and the last Mu’awiyah al-Himar.

Both al-Kulayni in his Al-Kafi and al-Majlisi in his Bihar al-Anwar quote Ahmed ibn Muhammad quoting Ali ibn al-Hassan quoting Muhammad ibn al-Walid and Muhammad ibn Ahmed quoting Yunus ibn Ya’qub quoting Ali ibn ‘Eisa al-Qammat quoting his uncle quoting Imam Abu Abdullah al-Sadiq (as) saying, "The Messenger of Allah (S) was shown in a vision how Banu Umayyah climbed over his pulpit (like monkeys climb over trees), so he felt very unhappy, whereupon Gabriel (as) descended upon him and asked him why he was so forlorn.

He (S) said, ‘I have seen (in a vision) tonight Banu Umayya ascending my pulpit after having misled people from the Straight Path.' Gabriel (as) said, ‘I swear by the One Who has sent me (as a messenger) with the truth, this is something with which I am not familiar.' Having said so, he ascended to the heavens. After a short while, he brought him one verse to remove thereby his grief; it said: ‘Have you considered if We would let them enjoy themselves for (a few) years, then that with which they are threatened comes to them, so much so that whatever they were permitted to enjoy shall not avail them (in the least)?' (Holy Qur'an, Surah Shu’ara 26:205-207).
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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answer updated 4 months ago

Huthaifa Ibn al-Yamaan was one of the very pious companions of the Proaphet Muhammad (SAWA) and Ameerul Mo'mineen (AS). He is one of the four best companions of the Prophet (SAWA). 
He was informed by the Prophet about the names of the Munafiqeen (hypocrites). Omar Ibn al-Khattab used to repeatedly ask him: Did the Prophet mention my name with the Munafiqeen?

He used to boycott praying on dead body of any Munafiq. He did not pray on many well known persons in Madina.
The narration that Huthaifa took part in al-Yarmouk battle is not in our books but in a Sunni book called al-Waafi bil Wafayaat by al-Safadi (V.11, P. 251).We can not trust such narration.

Huthaifa fought against Mo'awiyah in the army of Ameerul Mo'mineen (AS) in Siffeen battle.

Huthaifa was requested by Omar and Uthman to look after al-Madaa'in. Omar and Uthman wanted to show respect to him being the person who has secrets from the Prophet. He accepted to help Muslims and protect them from corrupt rulers. Imam Ali (AS) also appointed him as a ruler on al-Madaa'in.

Wassalam.

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Imam Ali (AS) did not help any of three caliphs in their deeds which was not according to the Quran and the real teachings  of the Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him and his Holy Progeny). 

He rectified dangerous mistakes and wrong rulings which they wanted to do against the teachings of the Quran and Sunnah because of their lack of knowledge.

His rectification saved victims from wrong punishments and the caliphs said that without Ali we would have been doomed.

Abu Bakr said: Without Ali, Abu Bakr would have been doomed.
This is narrated in Sunni book  Faydh Al Qadir. 

فيض القدير Volume 4 page 357.

Omar also said: Without Ali, Omar would have been doomed.
This is narrated in many Sunni books including al Mustadrak by Al-Hakim al-Nisaboori, Volume 2 page 429.

Othman also said: Without Ali, Othman would have been doomed. This is narrated in Zaynul Fata fi soorati hal ata, Volume 1 page 317.

Imam Ali (AS) did not approve the government of any of the three caliphs but his responsibility was to guide those who asked him for guidance. And when the three caliphs asked him in spec4fic cases, he replied to them and by replying to them he saved the Muslims from wrong punishment, as three of them wanted to punish people in the wrong way. The three Caliphs admitted that without the guidance of Ali they would have been doomed.

That does not mean at all that Ali (AS) approved the government of any of the three caliphs. He was very clear that the three caliphs of Saqifah have taken his own right, his own status as the real successor of the Prophet (SAWA) but he kept his patience for the sake of the Ummah and for the sake of Islam. 

Those who want to know the real stand of Amirul Momineen Ali (as) regarding the three caliphs should read the famous and authentic sermon called Shaqshaqiya which is mentioned in Nahjul Balagha and in many other books. 

In Shaqshaqiya sermon Imam Ali (AS) made it very clear that Abu Bakr, then Umar and then Othman were not entitled to take the post which they have taken, but for reasons they took what they have taken, he kept patient only for the sake of the safety of Islam and the Muslim Ummah.      
In Saheeh Muslim, (volume 5, page 153), Omar admitted to Ibn Abbas, that Ali believe that Abu Bakr are Umar were wrong in claiming caliphate after the Prophet. 

Wassalam.

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 11 months ago

The opponents of Shia Muslims put this allegation on Imam Ali (AS) trying to justify their claim that Imam Ali (AS) was friendly with the three Caliphs of Saqeefah. Imam Ali (AS) never gave any of his children any name of his opponents. It is authentic that he gave the name Othman to one of his sons and clearly said: I am giving him the name of my brother Othman Ibn Madh'oon عثمان بن مظعون who was a pious follower of Imam Ali (AS) and passed away during the life of the Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) and he was the first companion who was burried in the Baqee'.

Imam Ali (AS) never gave the name of Abu Bakr nor Omar to any of his children. He gave the name of Amro عمرو which is written in Arabic like عمر but it was not Omar.

Many of our scholars say the these names where not confined to the three rulers of Saqeefah but usual names used by people in general.

The stand of Imam Ali (AS) from the three rulers of Saqeefa is very clear in manybtexts e.g. his sermon known as Al-Shaqshaqiyyah and what is narrated in Saheeh Muslim ( Volume 5, page 153 from Omar Ibn al-Khattab who said that Ali believed that Abu Bakr and Omar are liars, sinners, betrayers, and dishonest.

Wassalam.

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Zoheir Ali Esmail, Shaykh Zoheir Ali Esmail has a Bsc in Accounting and Finance from the LSE in London, and an MA in Islamic Studies from Middlesex University. He studied Arabic at Damascus University and holds a PhD... Answered 1 year ago

Bismillah

Thank you for your question. Naming children according to sectarian lines was not a factor in the early ages of Islam and therefore, it is not an indication of holding a certain person with the same name in high esteem. For example, certain companions of the Imams (as) were named Yazid and Mu'awiya, but this in no way indicated that they condoned the actions of the Caliphs with the same names, or held them in high esteem.

May you always be successful. 

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 1 year ago

Taqiyyah has conditions and it aims to save the believers, but when mam Husain (AS) faced a complete different situation when the whole religion was in danger and here was no way at all to save Islam but to give his life to save Islam. There was no question of Taqiyyah in such dangerous situation. Neither Imam Ali (AS) nor any other Imam faced such situation, and if any Infallible faces such situation, they will definitely do exactly what Imam Husain (AS) did in sacrificing their lives to save Islam.

Wassalam.

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 1 year ago

Imam Ali (AS) is the Imam of all Muslims by order of Allah (SWT) declared by the Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) in hundreds of occasions including Ghadeer Khum in which the Proohet ordered all Muslims who were present to give allegiance to Ali (AS) as the leader of all who believed in the Prophet ( SAWA). The political plot of Saqeefa did deprive Imam Ali (AS) from his right in the government, but did not change the fact the he is the real Imam of Muslims. Being the real Imam, Imam Ali (AS) never dealt with the three Khalifs as real successors of the Prophet (SAWA) but just worldly rulers. He never gave them his Zakat nor prayed behind any of them. ( Al-Thahabi; Seyar A'lam Al-Nubalaa' , Vol 9, Page 284) stated: Ali did not attend with the three Khalifs any Jum'ah Prayer nor Jama'ah prayers.

Wassalam.

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Rebecca Masterton, Dr Rebecca Masterton graduated with a BA in Japanese Language and Literature; an MA in Comparative East Asian and African Literature and a PhD in Islamic literature of West Africa. She has been... Answer updated 2 years ago

There does not appear to be much in-depth history on the circumstances of these narrations and who transmitted them. By the time that they were narrated in Bukhari and Muslim the concept of 'Imam' did exist explicitly and was known in wider circles. It certainly would not have been in the interests of Bukhari to cite a narration that mentioned the word 'Imam' and 'Bani Hashim', since that would have clearly overturned the forced legitimacy of Abu Bakr and 'Umar's caliphates. In particular 'Umar held that that the successorship belonged to 'the people' (meaning Quraysh). The Uthmaniyya, being of Quraysh, therefore held that the caliphate belonged to them. One can surmise that perhaps there may have been narrations in circulation predicting twelve Imams, but that the wording had been 'adjusted' to mask the true implication, if not to 'redirect' the meaning of the narration to suit political purposes. It really needs an expert like Suleiman Ali Mourad (who has analysed the 'transferral of authorship' between the Ahl al-Bayt (as) and various figures in the Sufi tradition, i.e. the attribution to Sufi figures of sayings of the Ahl al-Bayt) to do a proper textual, historical analysis of these narrations.

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Zoheir Ali Esmail, Shaykh Zoheir Ali Esmail has a Bsc in Accounting and Finance from the LSE in London, and an MA in Islamic Studies from Middlesex University. He studied Arabic at Damascus University and holds a PhD... Answered 2 years ago

Bismillah

Thank you for your question. The relationship Imam Ali (as) had with the first three Caliphs was cordial, but that doesn’t mean that he condoned their usurping the Caliphate. Rather, the Imam (as) was careful not to sow the seeds of discord in the Muslim Community and after the people had decided not to follow the advice of the Prophet (saw), he worked for Islam within the parameters of the situation he faced. The Shia disapprove of the actions of first three Caliphs as they went against what they consider the express guidance of the Prophet (saw).

May you always be successful.

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 2 years ago

In Sunni books as well as Shia books, it is narrated that The Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) has clearly said:  My successors will be twelve , all of them from Bani Hashim.

This is one of Sunni very important books which narrated this Hadeeth:

Yanabee' Al-Mawaddah by Al-Qundoozi Al-Hanafi, Vol 3, Page 445.

The narration of Quraysh is the ne which has been publicized by those who dont want to mention Ahlul Bayt (AS).

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Sayyed Mohammad Al-Musawi, Sayyed Mohammad al-Musawi is originally from Iraq and heads up the World Ahlul Bayt Islamic League in London. Other than being involved in various humanitarian projects, he frequently responds to... Answered 2 years ago

Many prominent Sunni scholars e.g. Al Qondoozi Al-Hanafi admit that the twelve successors of the Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) are the twelve Imams from Ahlul Bayt (AS) from Imam Ali (AS), then his son Imam Hasan (AS) , then Imam Husain (AS) till Imam Al-Mahdi (AS).

But many other Sunni scholars wrote about the twelve successors in different ways. Ibn Taymiyyah after admitting that the twelve successors of the Prophet Muhammad are mentioned in Torah and Bible, claimed that Yazeed, son of Mo'awiyah is one of the twelve successors.

Ibn Arabi Al- Makki who is a well known Sunni Sufi scholar claimed that Al-Mutawakkil Al-Abbasi is one of them.

You find in Sunni books different claims about the twelve successors upto the extend that Ibn Al-Jawzi who was a prominent Sunni scholar said when he mentioned the Hadeeth of twelve successors:  I can not understand the meaning of it.

This mess among the Sunni scholars adds that the real twelve successors after of the Prophet are none but the 12 Imams from Ahlul Bayt (AS) about whom the Prophet himself mentioned with their names in many authentic Hadeeths including Hadeeth from Jaabir bn Abdillah Al-Ansaari who was told the names of the twelve successors by he Prophet himself.

Wassalam

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The term al-khilafa al-rashida (the rightly guided caliphate) was coined around or soon after the time of the civil wars that took place between Imam ‘Ali b. Abi Talib and his opponents.

It was designed to contrast the period of the first 3 caliphs, who were promoted as rightly guided, against the rule of 'Ali who was being denigrated by this comparison.

This will probably come as a surprise to our Sunni friends who clearly believe that ‘Ali is very much a part of the rashidun caliphs.

Yes it’s true today, but it wasn’t the case when this term was coined and the fictitious hadith was invented, amongst so many others, in order to give power to this anti-’Ali propaganda.

Here’s that work of fiction referred to in the question:

“Adhere to my sunnah and the sunnah of the rightly-guided successors after me. Hold on to it and cling on to it stubbornly.”

This narration is recorded by Abu Dawud, al-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah.

A study of the various chains of narration shows multiple weak and unreliable characters. But notice these ones in particular and see if you can find a pattern.

  • Khalid b. Ma’dan b. Abi Karib al-Kitabi - Belonged to Hims, a Syrian town under the rule of Mu’awiya that was notorious for its people's enmity towards ‘Ali, and he was the chief of police of Yazid b. Mu’awiyah!
  • Thawr b. Yazid - Belonged to Hims as mentioned by al-Dhahabi (Mizan al-I’tidal, vol. 1, p. 374). As mentioned by Ibn Hajar ‘al-’Asqalani (Tahdhib al-Tahdhib, vol. 2, p. 34) he hated ‘Ali who had killed his father in a battle. ‘Abd Allah b. Mubarak refrained from narrating from him and considered him a heretic (fasid al­-madhhab).
  • Hajar b. Hajar al-Kila'i - Belonged to Hims and was considered of unknown standing as mentioned by Ibn Hajar al-’Asqalani in Tahdhib al-Tahdhib, vol. 3, p. 118.

So this fake hadith was put in circulation to undermine the legitimacy of ‘Ali. Later, after the fall of the Umayyads and the rise of the ‘Abbasid’s, Sunni theology and creed started to take shape. And the chapter of the hatred of ‘Ali was officially closed.

‘Ali was now considered the fourth of these rashidun caliphs.