Imam al-Ridha (a.s.) said, “One day Ma’mun told me: ‘O Abu al-Hasan! I would like you to write a letter to some of your devotees in this region who have rebelled against us. (Meaning: ‘You would ask your followers among the rebels to give up their revolting.’)
I told him: ‘O Amir! If you fulfill the pledge by which I entered this task – that I may not command, nor install or dismiss anyone – I will fulfill [your request], too.
This heir apparency did not bring me any blessings; I was in Medina and my handwriting (command) was influential in the East and West; I would ride on my steed and pass through the alleys and no one was more respected there than I was. No one would ask me a favor that I was able to do, unless I would do it. Ma’mun said, ‘I will fulfill that pledge.”1
- 1. Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 49, p. 155 from al-Kafi.