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Fifteen Traditions That Prove the Caliphate and Imamate of the Twelve Imams

According to a tradition of Ibn Abbas in the book, Nusoos, Nathal, a Jew came to the Messenger of Allah (S) and said, “I have a doubt. If you give me a satisfactory reply, I would become your follower.” And he asked, “Who is your successor?” The Holy Prophet (S) replied:

“My successor and Caliph after me is Ali Ibn Abi Talib (a.s.). And after him, his two sons, Hasan (a.s.) and Husayn (a.s.) will be Caliphs. And there will be nine Imams after Husayn (a.s.).”

Then the Jew asked the Prophet to mention their names, the Prophet replied: “After Husayn, the nine Imams would be Ali Ibn Husayn, Muhammad Baqir, Ja’far as-Sadiq, Moosa Kazim, Ali Ibn Moosa, Muhammad Ibn Ali, Ali Ibn Muhammad, then Hasan Ibn Ali and the last Imam, the Proof of Allah, al-Mahdi. They are twelve and they all are Imams.”

Then the Jew asked, “What would be their status?” The Holy Prophet (S) said, “They shall be in Paradise with me.”

Hearing this, the Jew recited the Islamic creed and said, “No doubt, they all are true and I have read in the book of Prophet Moosa (a.s.) that the last Prophet would be born and his name would be Ahmad (S). There would be no prophethood after him and Imams would come from his progeny. This tradition is narrated from Shoba in Kashful Ghumma and Akhtab Khwarizmi, Hamuyi, Juwaini, Ibn Najjar, Salama Ibnal Akwa, Abdullah bin Ahmad have also quoted it in their respective books.

We should know that there are fourteen more traditions mentioned in Nusoos in which the Caliphate of the Twelve Shiite Imams is proved. A few traditions are mentioned below:

According to Abu Saeed, he heard from the Messenger of Allah (S) that there would be twelve Imams after him. Nine Imams would descend from Imam Husayn (a.s.) and the last would be the Master of the Age (a.j.); it denotes Imam Mahdi (a.j.). Those who are inimical to him would regret it.

The same tradition is narrated from Ibn Masood and we know that the Holy Prophet (S) has given glad tidings of twelve Imams and the same information of nine Imams from the backbone of Imam Husayn (a.s.) is given and the ninth Imam would be Imam Mahdi (a.j.). Umar is also seen as a narrator of this tradition. He says, “We have also heard from the Messenger of Allah (S) that there would be twelve Imams after him and nine of them would be born from the loins of Imam Husayn (a.s.) and Imam Mahdi (a.j.) would be from them. One who believes in them would be loved by Allah and one who keep aloof from them would be aloof from Allah.”

The writer says, “It is regretful that at the time of Saqifah, Umar forgot this tradition. Readers should keep in mind that Caliphate is not separate from Imamate, like Jalebi (an Indian sweet meat) is never sold separately from its syrup. It was Umar who made Abu Bakr a Caliph. The fact is that if Umar had faith on the tradition narrated by him, His Eminence, Ali (a.s.) would have been the first Imam and there was no question of appointing Abu Bakr or anyone as a Caliph. This action of Umar informs us about the lack of his faith and belief.

The remaining traditions are of the same tenor. The writer restrains his pen to maintain brevity. Suffice it to say that all such traditions of the Messenger of Allah (S) prove the Caliphate and Imamate of the twelve Imams and are enough to refute the Sunni Caliphate. But divine help is required to understand the truth. Nothing is possible without good sense.