Chapter 54: On Ar-Ridha’’s Knowledge of All the Languages
54-1 (The author of the book narrated) my father - may God be pleased with him - narrated that Sa’d ibn Abdullah quoted on the authority of Muhammad ibn Jazak, on the authority of Yasir - the servant, “There were servants in Abal Hassan Ar-Ridha’’s (a.s.) home who were Slavic and Roman. Abul Hassan’s (a.s.) room was near theirs. One night Imam Ar-Ridha’ (a.s.) heard them say in the Slavic and Roman languages, ‘We used to donate blood once a year when we were in our own towns. However, we have never donated any blood for the many years that we have been here.’ Then when the morning came, Abal Hassan Ar-Ridha’ (a.s.) called in some doctors and told them to take blood from each of those servants. He precisely instructed the doctors as to which of the veins to use for each of the servants. Then he (a.s.) told me, ‘O Yasir! You should not donate blood.’ However, I did not pay any attention to the Imam (a.s.) and donated blood. However, my hand swelled up and turned purple. Ar-Ridha’ (a.s.) asked me, ‘What has happened to you?’ I answered, ‘I donated blood.” The Imam (a.s.) asked, ‘Did I not admonish you against donating blood? Please bring your hand forward.’ I put my hand forward. Then the Imam (a.s.) rubbed his hands on my hand and spit on it. Then the Imam (a.s.) ordered me not to eat dinner for a while. I tried not to eat dinner at night as much as I could. Whenever I failed to do so and ate something for dinner, that pain returned.”
بابُ مَعْرِفَتِهِ عَلَيْهِ السَّلامُ بِجَمِيعِ اللُّغات
1 - حَدَّثَنَا أبِي رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا سَعْدُ بْنُ عَبْدِ اللهِ عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ جَزَكَ عَنْ يَاسِرٍ الخَادِمِ قَالَ كَانَ غُلْمَانٌ لأبِي الْحَسَنِ عَلَيْهِ السَّلاَمُ فِي الْبَيْتِ صَقَالِبَةً وَرُومِيَّةً وَكَانَ أبُو الْحَسَنِ عَلَيْهِ السَّلاَمُ قَرِيباً مِنْهُمْ فَسَمِعَهُمْ بِاللَّيْلِ يَتَرَاطَنُونَ بِالصَّقْلَبِيَّةِ وَالرُّومِيَّةِ وَيَقُولُونَ إنّا كُنَّا نَفْتَصِدُ فِي كُلِّ سَنَةٍ فِي بِلادِنَا ثُمَّ لَيْسَ نَفْتَصِدُ هَاهُنَا فَلَمَّا كَانَ مِنَ الْغَدِ وَجَّهَ أبُو الْحَسَنِ إلى بَعْضِ الأطِبَّاءِ فَقَالَ لَهُ افْصُدْ فُلاناً عِرْقَ كَذا وَافْصُدْ فُلاناً عِرْقَ كَذَا وَافْصُدْ فُلاناً عِرْقَ كَذا وَافْصُدْ هَذا عِرْقَ كَذَا. ثُمَّ قَالَ: يَا يَاسِرُ لا تَفْتَصِدُ أنْتَ؟ قَالَ فَافْتَصَدْتُ فَوَرُمَتْ يَدِي وَاحْمَرَّتْ. فَقَالَ لِي يَا يَاسِرُ مَالَكَ؟ فَأخْبَرْتُهُ. فَقَالَ: أَلَمْ أنْهَكَ عَنْ ذَلِكَ؟ هَلُمَّ يَدَكَ. فَمَسَحَ يَدَهُ عَلَيْهَا وَتَفَلَ فِيهَا ثُمَّ أوْصَانِي أنْ لا أتَعَشَّى. فَمَكَثْتُ بَعْدَ ذَلِكَ مَا شَاءَ اللهُ لا أتَعَشَّى ثُمَّ أُغَافِلُ فَأتَعَشَّى فَيَضْرِبُ عَلَيَّ.
54-2 (The author of the book narrated) my father - may God be pleased with him - narrated that Sa’d ibn Abdullah quoted on the authority of Ahmad ibn Abi Abdullah al-Barqi, on the authority of Abu Hashem Dawood ibn Al-Qasim al-Ja’fari, “I used to eat lunch with Abal Hassan Ar-Ridha’ (a.s.). Sometimes he (a.s.) spoke to some of his servants in Slavic and Persian (Farsi) languages. Sometimes I sent my servant who spoke Persian to the Imam (a.s.) and Ar-Ridha’ (a.s.) knew Persian. Sometimes it became difficult for the servants to understand Persian. Then the Imam (a.s.) used to explain things for them himself.
54-3 Ahmad ibn Ziyad al-Hamadani - may God be pleased with him - narrated that Ali ibn Ibrahim ibn Hashem quoted on the authority of his father, on the authority of Aba Salt al-Harawi, “Ar-Ridha’ (a.s.) spoke with people in their own languages. By God, he was the most eloquent and the most knowledgeable person in any language. One day I told him, ‘O son of the Prophet of God! I am amazed at your mastery over all these various languages.’ Ar-Ridha’ (a.s.) said, ‘O Aba Salt! I am the Proof of God for His creatures. God would not designate a Proof for Himself to any nation who does not know their language. Have you not heard that Ali - the Commander of the Faithful (a.s.) said?, ‘We have been granted elaborate speech.’ Then how can this be without mastery of all the languages?’”