Ahlul Sunnat say in Sawaiqul Mohreqa, Ibn Hajar Makki has quoted some traditions on the authority of Darqutni from Sadaat and Zaidiya Imams, which imply the superiority of Umar and Abu Bakr. The source of all those traditions is Muhammad Baqir and Imam Ja’far Sadiq (a.s.).
In such circumstances, the denial of Shias of the merits of Abu Bakr and Umar seems to be against the pure sayings of Ahlul Bayt (a.s.). This objection is answered in the following way: According to Shahristani of Milal wan Nihal, the Zaidiya sect followed the Motazalite school thought, which in the end became Shia. In such a case, according to the principles of Sunni jurisprudence, the traditions of both sects are unacceptable.
In addition to this, the objection would have been sustainable when it had been proved from authentic books of Shia traditions. To make such allegations on the basis of traditions recorded in Sunni books, is beyond the sphere of justice. Anyway, it should be seen what those traditions are. When we check them we find that those traditions are without complete chains of narrators. Also, some of the narrators are stooges of Bani Umayyah, some are liars and others, enemies of Ahlul Bayt (a.s.). Some like Sairafi are Motazalite. In the same way, a tradition is attributed to Imam Shafei. But there is no proof that Shafei ever came in contact with Imam Ja’far Sadiq (a.s.).
It is a well known fact that Muawiyah used to spread false traditions in praise of the two Caliphs. As Ibn Abil Hadid has written and Shah Abdul Haqq Dehlavi writes in Ashatul Lumaat, in the chapter of the Merits of two Caliphs: “Many traditions in praise of the two Caliphs are inauthentic.” In the same way, Shah Abdul Aziz writes in Bustanul Mohaddethin that Ahlul Sunnat have fabricated 14000 traditions in praise of the two Caliphs and Ibn Jauzi has collected these.
Obviously, if there had really existed traditions in the praise of two Caliphs, what was the need of concocting these reports. It is worth noting that if the Purified Imams had approved the merits of the two Caliphs, why would they have issued verdicts against them and their followers. In the same way, when Abdul Rahman bin Auf asked His Eminence, Ali (a.s.): “If you become the Caliph, would you continue the practice of Abu Bakr and Umar?” Ali (a.s.) flatly refused. Obviously, if Ali (a.s.) had approved the two Caliphs, he would not have given such a reply. His Eminence, Ali (a.s.) was not in the least agreeable to the merits of the two Caliphs. If he were, he would not have mentioned Abu Bakr in the Shiqshiqya Sermon with such anger and grief.
Thus, the merits of the two Caliphs can never be the religion of Sadaat. All Sadaat who confessed to the superiority of the two Caliphs or still do, have acted and still act against the religion of Sadaat. This confession of theirs was indeed for material benefits. Just as due to love of material wealth, the sayings of Abbas, Ibn Abbas, Ibn Aqeel and Abdullah, Yahya and Mutawakkil and Ja’far Kazzab are unreliable. The Purified Imams definitely did not agree to the merits of the two Caliphs. Thus, Imam Zainul Aabideen (a.s.) recited a sermon in Damascus, in which he mentioned the merits of himself and his purified forefathers and he did not say a word about Abu Bakr and Umar.
Ibn Athir has quoted this sermon in his Tarikh Kamil. It was a sermon, after hearing which, the nobles of Damascus released a deep sigh and wept profusely and began to criticize the accursed Yazeed. In the same way, in the debate between Imam Taqi (a.s.) against Yahya bin Aqsam in the court of Mamoon, the great Imam continued to deny the superiority of the two Caliphs and laid various blames on the two of them. This debate is also mentioned in Ibn Athir’s Tarikh Kamil. Thus, we should know that belief in the superiority of Umar and Abu Bakr cannot be a part of Shia faith. They differ like black differs from white.
In the end, I will also mention the factors that sometimes compelled the Sadaat to confess to the superiority of Abu Bakr and Umar and that was in dissimulation (Taqayyah). If at that time, the Sadaat had not practiced dissimulation, there would have remained no sign of Sadaat or their ancestral religion.
The discussion of dissimulation is to come in the following pages. To fend off the attacks of Ahlul Sunnat, Shias had dug out the shield of dissimulation. If one does not do it, one is sure to die. It is an old proverb. There was no option for Shias except to show themselves to be Ahlul Sunnat. What else can they do against a religion, which was established on the enmity of Ahlul Bayt (a.s.)?
Praise be to Allah, during this British rule there remains no need to practice dissimulation. Praise and Glory be to Allah. Anyway, the sayings of Zaid, the Martyr, are often based on dissimulation and were due to the existing circumstances. They are Zaidiya Sadaat who at one time believed in the superiority of the two Caliphs and the same who during the reign of Taalallah and Maazuddaula wrote curses on the names of two Caliphs on the doors of the mosque. In the same way, Ibn Abil Hadid has mentioned such Zaidiya traditions in Sharh Nahjul Balagha that show the injustice of the two Caliphs with regard to the affairs of Caliphate.