First Tradition: Abu Dharr Al-Ghifari says that he heard the Messenger of Allah (S) say to Ali (a.s.): O Ali, you are the Siddiq Akbar and such a Farooq Aazam1 that you will discriminate between good and evil.
Second Tradition: It is narrated from Salman Farsi that the Messenger of Allah (S) told with regard to Ali (a.s.) that he was the first to bring faith in the Holy Prophet (S) and that he would be the first to meet the Prophet on Judgment Day. He is the Siddiq Akbar and Farooq Aazam who discriminates between good and evil. He is the chief of the believers, whereas material world is the chief of the hypocrites. This tradition shows that precedence in faith is necessary for one to be Farooq Aazam. Thus this title cannot be allowed for anyone, except Ali (a.s.).
Third Tradition: Abu Laila relates that the Holy Prophet (S) said: “Very soon there will be turmoil in my nation when it is so, you should serve Ali (a.s.). Indeed, he is the one to discriminate between truth and falsehood.”2
This tradition proves that Ali (a.s.) is discriminator (Farooq) and other important points are also derived from this tradition. The article ‘soon’ shows that the Holy Prophet (S) knew that there would be controversies among the Muslims in the near future. It was something that was related to Muslims and in the situation Ali (a.s.) would also be present and it was supposed to be an affair against the Bani Hashim. It cannot be anything except the ‘consensus’ of Saqifah Bani Sadah.
It was turmoil or mischief, which has till now put the Islamic world in controversy. The opponents of Bani Hashim might not consider it so, but in the view of Muhammad’s Progeny and common Bani Hashim, the matter of Saqifah was a mischief. The immediate effect of this incident was that many insulting and dishonorable actions against Ali and Fatima became apparent. And after this, such actions against Bani Hashim took place that is not hidden from the people of awareness. If this affair of Saqifah is not a mistake, what is it?
Thus, the Holy Prophet (S) knew by unseen knowledge of his Prophethood that very soon, mischief was about to be created. On the basis of this, he said that when such turmoil happens, and there is not much delay in this turmoil, O Muslim, you must support Ali (a.s.) in this turmoil. But what a pity, that, except for a few, no one supported Ali (a.s.) and did not act on the command of the Prophet.
Those who supported Ali (a.s.) were Abu Dharr Al-Ghifari, Salman Farsi, Miqdad and Malik al-Ashtar. Another result of the incident of Saqifah is that thousands of Muslims (even in this time) if not openly, they harbor suspicions in their heart with regard to Muhammad’s Progeny. Though I can mention many examples of this aloofness, here I present only two examples.
Three years ago, Maulana Shibli Nomani was in Calcutta and I was also present in the house where he stayed. One day Mirza Hairat Dehalvi was mentioned in the conversation. People of India are aware of the animosity of Mirza Hairat to Muhammad’s Progeny and especially to Ali al-Murtadha’ (a.s.). For some moments, the opposition of Mirza Hairat to Ali (a.s.) was discussed. It is not hidden from people of awareness that the Mirza has not left anything unsaid against Ali (a.s.). Although, this is something which any common person would oppose.
So I was not surprised when Shibli Nomani said that many scholars of Ahlul Sunnat have supported the views of Mirza Hairat. However, I was surprised when the Maulana went on to relate what those scholars have said in this regard. “They said that we cannot say anything about the elders of Shias but they criticize our Caliphs without any restraint. At least now there is a person who speaks bad of the elders of Shia and takes revenge on our behalf for the bad they say about our elders.” This, at least shows that many people of Ahlul Sunnat, though they themselves may not curse Ali (a.s.), they are pleased at the cursing of Ali (a.s.). How can such people support Ali (a.s.) in a time of turmoil that was prophesied by Holy Prophet (S)?
Second Example: There was person of Pathan (Afghan) origin in a family of Delhi. He used to visit me daily and remain in my company for a long time. I knew he was a Sunni and a staunch one at that. So I never mentioned the family of the Prophet before him. By chance, I involuntarily uttered a couplet of Saadi in praise of Ali (a.s.). Although my face was turned away from him the Khan became very angry. He wanted to say something severe to me but his anger was so intense that he was at a loss of words. At last, when he regained control, he said: “This is a religious matter and in this, swords can also be used.”
It is worth noting that the Khan was under obligation to us, and I had not said anything related to cursing. In spite of this, he was so angry that if he had a sword he would have killed me like Ibn Muljim. In any case, I apologized to him and till the time he was alive, I did not severe contacts with him. These two examples say a lot about the devotion of the majority of Muslims to Ahlul Bayt (a.s.).
Thousands of Mirza Hairats are present in the world. Because Mirza Hairat has earned popularity due to his animosity to Ahlul Bayt (a.s.), the people of India know him as an opponent of Ahlul Bayt (a.s.). Otherwise, there are many people of his kind who are inwardly same, but they will never be exposed. Now, I will show how the title of Saifullah (sword of Allah) belongs to Ali (a.s.). To prove this, I mention the following tradition: