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Thread: Hadith about the 12 Imams from the Quraish?

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    Default Hadith about the 12 Imams from the Quraish?

    Asalam Alikum

    I came across the following Hadith while reading Sahih Muslim


    Muslim :: Book 20 : Hadith 4483

    It has been narrated on the authority of Amir b. Sa'd b. Abu Waqqas who said: I wrote (a letter) to Jabir b. Samura and sent it to him through my servant Nafi', asking him to inform me of something he had heard from the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him). He wrote to me (in reply): I heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) say on Friday evening, the day on which al-Aslami was stoned to death (for committing adultery): The Islamic religion will continue until the Hour has been established, or you have been ruled over by twelve Caliphs, all of them being from the Quraish. also heard him say: A small force of the Muslims will capture the white palace, the police of the Persian Emperor or his descendants. I also heard him say: Before the Day of Judgment there will appear (a number of) impostors. You are to guard against them. I also heard him say: When God grants wealth to any one of you, he should first spend it on himself and his family (and then give it in charity to the poor). I heard him (also) say: I will be your forerunner at the Cistern (expecting your arrival).


    As this is from Sahih Muslim, I'm sure we all will agree on its authenticity. First of all it tells us about a person who had been stoned to death. I have heard a few other ahadith that do talk about stoning of those who commit adultery. In the Quran we do not find any ayah where Allah has ordered us to carry out this punishment. So, why was this punishment a punishment in the Prophet's (may peace be upon him) time? What is the status of this punishment in our time? Are we required to carry it out? I have heard that for married people its stoning and for unmarried its lashing. Is this correct? What is the authority on this?

    My second question regarding the above Hadith is about the 12 Caliphs. Who are / were these Caliphs? Are they still to come or have they passed away? Are these the same Caliphs that the shias call Imams? What is the sunni position about these Caliphs?

    My third question is regarding the above Hadith's statement, "A small force of the Muslims will capture the white palace, the police of the Persian Emperor or his descendants". What does this mean?

    My fourth and final question is about the impostors that will appear. I think we have had a few of them already. Does the Dajjal also fall into this category?

    My intention to ask all these questions is not to start an argument or anything of that sort. I came across this hadith and had these questions in my mind so I thought I would ask the people on this forum for my benefit and also for the benefit for those who have similar questions.

    Sorry for a lengthy post. Thanks for reading and looking forward to your answers.

    JazakAllah


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    Default Re: Hadith about the 12 Imams from the Quraish?

    Quote Originally Posted by ahmedkhan00 View Post
    Asalam Alikum

    I came across the following Hadith while reading Sahih Muslim


    Muslim :: Book 20 : Hadith 4483

    It has been narrated on the authority of Amir b. Sa'd b. Abu Waqqas who said: I wrote (a letter) to Jabir b. Samura and sent it to him through my servant Nafi', asking him to inform me of something he had heard from the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him). He wrote to me (in reply): I heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) say on Friday evening, the day on which al-Aslami was stoned to death (for committing adultery): The Islamic religion will continue until the Hour has been established, or you have been ruled over by twelve Caliphs, all of them being from the Quraish. also heard him say: A small force of the Muslims will capture the white palace, the police of the Persian Emperor or his descendants. I also heard him say: Before the Day of Judgment there will appear (a number of) impostors. You are to guard against them. I also heard him say: When God grants wealth to any one of you, he should first spend it on himself and his family (and then give it in charity to the poor). I heard him (also) say: I will be your forerunner at the Cistern (expecting your arrival).


    As this is from Sahih Muslim, I'm sure we all will agree on its authenticity. First of all it tells us about a person who had been stoned to death. I have heard a few other ahadith that do talk about stoning of those who commit adultery. In the Quran we do not find any ayah where Allah has ordered us to carry out this punishment. So, why was this punishment a punishment in the Prophet's (may peace be upon him) time? What is the status of this punishment in our time? Are we required to carry it out? I have heard that for married people its stoning and for unmarried its lashing. Is this correct? What is the authority on this?

    My second question regarding the above Hadith is about the 12 Caliphs. Who are / were these Caliphs? Are they still to come or have they passed away? Are these the same Caliphs that the shias call Imams? What is the sunni position about these Caliphs?

    My third question is regarding the above Hadith's statement, "A small force of the Muslims will capture the white palace, the police of the Persian Emperor or his descendants". What does this mean?

    My fourth and final question is about the impostors that will appear. I think we have had a few of them already. Does the Dajjal also fall into this category?

    My intention to ask all these questions is not to start an argument or anything of that sort. I came across this hadith and had these questions in my mind so I thought I would ask the people on this forum for my benefit and also for the benefit for those who have similar questions.

    Sorry for a lengthy post. Thanks for reading and looking forward to your answers.

    JazakAllah
    Al Salamu Aleykum brother Ahmad

    I Will explain or clarify one aspect of this Hadith and leave the rest for the brothers inchallah... First of all that is not the Only Hadith, there are several Others similar to it, thus when you place them all together you get a better idea.


    The prophet PBUH MADE SURE that the Caliphate must be with the Tribe of Quraysh as all Arabs agree on their Rank and virtue, This is because the Prophet PBUH didn't want people to fall into quarrel after his death as to which tribe should lead the Muslims, in Sahih Muslim we read:

    Book 020, Number 4474:
    It has been narrated on the authority of Hammam b. Munabbih who said: This is one of the traditions narrated by Abu Huraira from the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) who said: People are subservient to the Quraish: the Muslims among them being subservient to the Muslims among them, and the disbelievers among them being subservient to the disbelievers among them.

    Book 020, Number 4475:
    It has been narrated on the authority of Jabir b. 'Abdullah that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: People are the followers of Quraish in good as well as evil (i. e. in the customs of Islamic as well as pre-Islamic times).

    Book 020, Number 4476:
    It has been narrated on the authority of 'Abdullah that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: The Caliphate will remain among the Quraish even if only two persons are left (on the earth),

    Nothing to do with alulBayt or Bani hashim like the SHia state, He is clearly saying The Caliph which the Muslims agree Upon must be from Quraysh and this prophecy has been fullfilled as the Caliphate was given to Quraysh (Abu bakr, uthman, Ali, Hassan, Umar, Muawiyah, Abdul Malik ect...)

    These other versions of the Hadith explain things more clearly:

    Muslim Book 020, Number 4480:
    It has been narrated on the authority of Jabir b. Samura who said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) say: Islam will continue to be triumphant until there have been twelve Caliphs. Then the Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) said something which I could not understand. I asked my father: What did he say? He said: He has said that all of them (twelve Caliphs) will be from the Quraish.

    Muslim Book 020, Number 4481:
    It has been narrated on the authority of Jabir b. Samura that the Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) said: This order will continue to be dominant until there have been twelve Caliphs. The narrator says: Then he said something which I could not understand, and I said to my father: What did he say? My father told me that he said that all of them (Caliphs) would be from the Quraish.

    Muslim Book 020, Number 4482:
    It has been reported on the authority of Jabir b. Samura who said: I went with my father to the Messenger of Allah (may peeace be upon him) and I heard him say: This religion would continue to remain powerful and dominant until there have been twelve Caliphs. Then he added something which I couldn't catch on account of the noise of the people. I asked my father: What did he say? My father said: He has said that all of them will be from the Quraish.


    In brief, he didn't mention them by name, this means he didn't want to say That such and such person must rule you after me, So he didn't appoint any successors directly, He just said The state of the religion will be good until the rule of twelve Caliphs Pass, and this is true, Islam as a religion was at its top state during the rule of the first 12 Caliphs (not necessarily politically but religiously).

    The Prophet PBUH however was confident That Allah and the Believers will make the right choice as to who must succeed him, The Mother of believers RA tells us about a conversation that she had with the Prophet PBUH before his death:

    Narrated By Al-Qasim bin Muhammad : 'Aisha said, "O my head!" Allah's Apostle said, "If that (i.e., your death) should happen while I am still alive, I would ask Allah to forgive you and would invoke Allah for you." 'Aisha said, "O my life which is going to be lost! By Allah, I think that you wish for my death, and if that should happen then you would be busy enjoying the company of one of your wives in the last part of that day." The Prophet said, "But I should say, 'O my head!' I feel like calling Abu Bakr and his son and appoint (the former as my successors lest people should say something or wish for something. Allah will insist (on Abu Bakr becoming a Caliph) and the believers will prevent (anyone else from claiming the Caliphate)," or "...Allah will prevent (anyone else from claiming the Caliphate) and the believers will insist (on Abu Bakr becoming the Caliph)."

    [Sahih al-Bukhari]


    this is also a prophecy which was fulfilled as all the Companions RA unanimously agreed on Abu bakr RA and Allah made it happen as he intends.


    Now let me present you an article written on this issue by brother Ibn al Hashimi:


    This issue of the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs has caused un-necessary confusion within the ranks of Sunni lay-persons; the e-Shia have relied on this Hadith as a trump card whilst debating on various forums, mostly due to the fact that no Sunni site had–up until now–adequately dealt with this issue. The few responses that were available from the Sunni side were half-hearted at best and in fact failed to deal with the crux of the issue, namely the coincidence between the number twelve found in Sunni Hadith and the number of Shia Imams. No doubt it was this (so-called) “coincidence” that seemed to surprise Sunni lay-persons. It is our sincere hope that this article will finally bring an end to this situation; we will show, from their own Shia books, that there is absolutely no coincidence in the number twelve nor is it a proof for Shi’ism but rather it is only a proof of the Shia manipulations.

    Throughout our answer to this question, we refer the reader to the following book: The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain. It should be noted that the author, Dr. Hussain, is a devout Imami Shia professor who wrote this book in order to defend Shi’ism. The book was published by “The Muhammadi Trust” as well as by the “Zahra Trust”, both of which are very well-respected Shia publishers. The book is also referenced by ************* and therein cited as an authoratative source. Hence, the book is considered highly reliable to the Shia.

    Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

    The Hadith of the twelve Caliphs is an example of a “self-fulfilling prophecy”. Therefore, before we begin, we must define what exactly is a self-fulfilling prophecy. We read:

    A self-fulfilling prophecy is a prediction that, in being made, actually causes itself to become “true”.

    (“Self-fulfilling prophecy”, Wikipedia)

    To give an example of a self-fulfilling prophecy, we have the literary story of “Romulus and Remus”: according to legend, Romulus and Remus were in their childhood sentenced to death for fear of a prophecy that one day they would kill the king. However, Romulus and Remus escape death and later in life they hear stories of the prophecy; after hearing these prophecies, Romulus and Remus then realize that their destiny in life is to kill the king, and they then do exactly that.

    In other words, a self-fulfilling prophecy is a statement which may sufficiently influence people in such a way that their reactions ultimately fulfill (or seem to fulfill) the prophecy. The prophecies of various religious persons have always been the victims of this problem, whereby people seek to fulfill the prophecy themselves. As for the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs, the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) prophecized that there would be twelve Caliphs after him, and thereafter various deviant sects “fulfilled” this prophecy by laying claim to political authority by putting forward their own set of twelve Caliphs.

    The Hadith of the Twelve Caliphs

    There is no doubt that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) did in fact prophecize in Hadith that there would be twelve Caliphs, and many Sunni scholars do believe that the last of the twelve will be Imam Mehdi who will fill the earth with justice. This is most definitely a belief of the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah, well-known to the scholars even if it is not well-known amongst the lay-persons from amongst the Sunnis.

    After the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) made this statement, there were many deviant sects which sought to exploit this Hadith and other similar prophecies in order to bring themselves to power. The Shia were one such group, who used this Hadith–along with those about Imam Mehdi–in order to place their own sect into power. It was based upon the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs that the Shia decided to limit their Imamah to the number twelve. We read (emphasis is ours):

    These and other traditions (Hadith) were spread in both Imamite and Zaydite circles…According to al-Saduq these traditions (Hadith) and others predicting the occurrence of the Ghayba were the main reason for the Imamite acceptance of the Ghayba and for their being satisfied that the series of the Imams should stop at the twelfth.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.138)

    In other words, the Imamah of the Imami Shia would not have ended at the number twelve had it not been for this Hadith of the twelve Caliphs found in mainstream Muslim books of Hadith. It was this Hadith which was one of the “main reasons” that caused the Shia to terminate the Imamah at the number twelve. It is therefore based on very backwards and circular logic that the Shia should now use this Hadith as proof for their twelve Imams, when in fact it was they who based their belief on our Hadith! Today we have Shia youths who attack the Sunnis by saying “how could it simply be a coincidence that your Hadith also tells you about these twelve Imams?” Of course it is not a coincidence! It is the Shia who based their deviant beliefs in our Hadith, and so it is very queer of them to then further our Hadith as proof of their beliefs! This is very backwards and circular logic! It is placing the carriage before the horse, reversing cause and effect!

    In fact, had the Sunni Hadith stated that there were eleven Caliphs instead of twelve, then the Shia would have claimed that their Imams were eleven in number. And once again, they would have come to us with incredulous looks on their faces, saying what a “miracle” it was that their beliefs can be “proven” from our books. Had it been thirteen Caliphs mentioned in the Sunni books of Hadith, then the Shia would have ended the Imamah at the number thirteen. The proof for the termination of the Shia Imamah was based from Sunni Hadith, so there is therefore no surprise at the concordance between the number of Caliphs in Sunni Hadith and the number of Shia Imams.

    Indeed, the Shia in actuality did not have twelve Imams, but eleven of them. The eleventh Imam, Hasan al-Askari, died without leaving behind a son to succeed him. In fact, Hasan al-Askari’s own family were completely ignorant of the existence of any child of his, and Hasan al-Askari’s estate had been divided between his brother Jafar and his mother (instead of any to the son). Moojan Momen writes in “An Introduction to Shi’i Islam” (London, 1985, p. 162) that, “Jafar remained unshakeable in his assertion that his brother (Hasan al-Askari) had no progeny.” We read:

    The majority of the Imamites…denied his birth or even his existence, and mocked those who believed in him. According to al-Nu’mani the bulk of these groups abandoned their belief in the hidden Imam. In fact those who continued to hold a firm belief in his Imamate were a small minority belonging to the circles of narrators, like Ibn Qubba and al-Nu’mani himself, who based their belief on the traditions of the Imams (i.e. Hadith about twelve Imams).

    Many scholars shared the perplexity of the Imamite masses over the prolonged occultation of the twelfth Imam.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.143)

    Indeed, if Hasan al-Askari really had a child, then why did his own family not give a share of the inheritance to him? To deal with this inconsistency, the Imami Shia of the time denounced Jafar as being “al-Kadhab” (the Liar), and they came up with the fantastic story that the eleventh Imam had a son but that this son was hidden from view (i.e. in occultation).

    In order to “prove” the existence of this mysterious son, the Imami Shia actually brought forward the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs and others similar to it, in order to somehow prove that the Imamah could not possibly have ended at eleven persons but must be twelve in number. Nonetheless, such fantastic explanations did not fool the vast majority of the Imami Shia who “apostatized” from Imamiyyah Shi’ism in order to embrace Sunni Islam or other branches of Shi’ism. In fact, the Shia movement split into at least fifteen different sects after the eleventh Imam’s death, some of these sects claiming that the Imams were only eleven in number (and ended with Hasan al-Askari). These sects were defeated and denounced by the Imami Shia safir (representative) who used the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs–along with an intensive propaganda campaign–to silence any who opposed the idea of there being exactly twelve Imams; it was because of this very Hadith that these other Shia groups–who believed in eleven Imams–fell into non-existence. We read:

    Although the Imamites split into fifteen groups and held different views concerning the successor of al-Askari at the time of the first safir, the teaching and the underground activities of the second safir met with success. His followers (al-Imamiyya al-Qat’iyya) carried out intensive propaganda to prove the existence of the twelfth Imam…thus the teachings and doctrine of the followers of the second safir dominated Imamite circles, whereas other groups disappeared.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.139)

    And we read how many Shia used this Hadith to limit the number to twelve:

    He also mentions traditions (Hadith) which point to the fact that the number of the Imams would end with the twelfth Imam and he would be al-Qa’im.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.4)

    So we see that the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs was instrumental in determining how many Imams the Shia decided upon having. Had, for example, the tenth Imam died without leaving behind a successor, then the Shia would have said that there were two Imams in occultation or perhaps they would have nominated a brother of the Imam’s to be one of their Imams or perhaps they would claim that Fatima (رضّى الله عنها) was one of the twelve, etc. Whatever the case, no matter what, the Shia would make sure that their Imams would add upto twelve in number, in order to establish legitimacy through the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs. It is therefore very pretentious that they should now use this as a proof against us.

    Hadith Exploited by Deviant Sects

    A fact unknown to lay-persons is that the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs is exploited by not only the Imami Shia but by many other deviant sects. Interestingly, many of these deviant sects have a more convincing argument for their claims over that of the Imami Shia! For example, the Ibaadis–the descendants of the Khawaarij–use the Hadith of twelve Caliphs in order to validate the claims of their leaders, who were twelve in number. The Ibaadis claim that this Hadith is a “shining proof” for their twelve Caliphs, which include: Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه), Umar (رضّى الله عنه), Abdullah ibn Yahya al-Kindi, and the nine Ibaadi Imams of the Rustamid Dynasty.

    It is interesting that the racist cult known as the Nation of Islam, headed by Elijah Muhammad, also uses the hadith of the twelve Caliphs in order to validate their sect. Elijah Muhammad, their supposed Messenger, claimed that their founder, W.D. Fard, was one of the twelve Imams:

    Now there are twelve (12) Imams or Scientists, who have been ruling all the time, and one of the twelve is always greater than the other eleven (11)

    (Muhammad Speaks Newspaper)

    If a deviant group like the Nation of Islam can use the hadith of the twelve Caliphs, then we are not at all surprised when the twelver Shias use it as as a “proof”. Another deviant sect which did in fact lay claim to the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs and use it to bring themselves to power were the Zaydis. We read:

    The Zaydites also used these traditions (Hadith) in their attempts to gain control

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.154)

    A group from amongst the Zaydis revered twelve Imams, but they believed in a different set of twelve Imams than the Imami Shia. These Zaydis believed in the first four of the Imams of the Imami Shia, but they disagreed with the Imami Shia as to who the other eight of them were. This group of Zaydis, like the Sunnis, believed that the Caliphate was not limited to twelve, but the Zaydis argued that the twelfth would be Al-Qa’im and he would lead an armed and political insurrection. A similar view was held by another heretical sect, namely that of the Ismailis who used the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs in order to further their own set of Imams. And there were many other deviant groups who used the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs–and other Hadith in regards to Imam Mehdi–in order to bring themselves to power. We read:

    (These traditions were used by) numerous Islamic groups, particularly the Zaydites, in their struggle for power during the Umayyad period (which) shows that these traditions (Hadith) were well-known among the Muslims of that period.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.18)

    So we see that the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs and others like it were well-known by all Muslims back then and that deviant groups often used them in order to advance themselves politically. We read:

    But political rivalry amongst the Muslims encouraged some people to exploit this hope and to distort these Prophetic traditions (Hadith) in order to use them in their struggle for power.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.18)

    We read:

    The Prophetic traditions concerning the twelve Imams related by the Sunnite and the Zaydite traditionists were also narrated by the Imamites. They applied these traditions to their twelve Imams and added traditions of the Imams themselves.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.21)

    And we read, right from the mouth of this Shia historian himself, the following:

    These traditions (Hadith) were used by many Shi’ite groups to back up the claims of their leaders who aspired to power

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.2)

    The Hadith of the twelve Caliphs is so vague and obscure that it allows almost any group to exploit it and use it to further their own cause; it simply necessitates allocating a group of twelve leaders and then saying that the Hadith refers to them. We read:

    This obscurity allowed some ‘Alids to use these traditions (Hadith) to support their own political aims

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.154)

    The exploitation of this Hadith was not at all limited to Imami Shia. We read:

    Like the Imamites, the Ismailis had reported the (same) Prophetic traditions (Hadith)…however, they interpreted some of these traditions (Hadith) in a manner which would support their struggle to gain immediate success in North Africa. Furthermore they applied other traditions (Hadith) narrated by the Imamites about al-Qa’im al-Mahdi to their own concealed leader

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.111)

    The Hadith was also exploited by a group known as the Qaramita. We read:

    The Qaramita’s use of the Prophetic traditions (Hadith)…in their struggle to gain immediate political success…

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.116)

    In fact, it was not only the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs which were exploited by the Shia but also many other Hadith which prophecized the coming of Imam Mehdi. We read:

    He also traces the use of the prophetic traditions (Hadith) regarding al-Qa’im al-Mahdi by these groups in their struggle for power

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.11)

    We read further:

    Between the years 245-260/859-874 the Imamite and Zaydite traditionists were relating traditions stating that al-Qa’im would be the twelfth Imam and urging people to join his side when he rose.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.29)

    On numerous occassions did groups of Shia exploit the Sunni Hadith in order to claim for themselves political supremacy. We read:

    The spread of such narrations (Hadith) encouraged the Imamites to expect the rise of al-Qa’im in the near future and to link his rising with Abbasid rule. Some of them applied these traditions (Hadith) along with others concerning the signs of the rise of al-Qa’im to the circumstances surrounding the ‘Alid revolt which broke out in 250/864. Ibn ‘Uqba relates that the leader of the rebellion, Yahya b. Umar, was expected to be al-Qa’im al-Mahdi, since all the signs concerning the rise of al-Qa’im al-Mahdi related by al-Sadiq occurred during the revolt.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.29)

    We read further:

    It appears, however, that the Abbasid oppression did not deter the Shi’ite ambition to reach power. Many historians like al-Isfahani report that ‘Alid revolts broke out in 250-1/864-5 in the areas of Kufa, Tabaristan, Rayy, Qazwin, Egypt, and Hijaz. These might have been directed by one group, or to be more accurate, by one leader. It is beyond the scope of this work to deal with the details of these revolts, but it is worth mentioning that the rebels employed the Prophetic traditions (Hadith) concerning al-Qa’im al-Mahdi and the signs of his rising to achieve immediate political success.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.52)

    This game of playing with Hadith was also played by Caliph al-Mansoor, who named his son “Muhammad al-Mahdi”. We read:

    Moreover he (Caliph al-Mansoor) invested his successor Muhammad with the epithet “al-Mahdi” in order to turn the attention of his subjects from the ‘Alid family toward the family of Abbas.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.28)

    Elaborating on this point, the Shia author states:

    It is reported that the Prophet said, “The Mahdi is from my progeny. His name is similar to mine.” (al-Tirmidhi)…perhaps al-Mansur took this point into account when he called his son, “Muhammad al-Mahdi” (al-Bidaya)

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.165)

    What is interesting is that at first many of the Shia referred to Hasan al-Askari’s mysterious son by the name “Ali” as opposed to “Muhammad”. However, the Shia later decided to switch to “Muhammad” so that it would more fully apply to the mainstream Muslim collection of Hadith which state that Muhammad is the name of Imam Mehdi. We read:

    They thought that he (the eleventh Imam) had left a successor whose name was not Muhammad but Ali. They said that al-Askari had no son except Ali, who had been seen by his father’s trustworthy followers.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.63)

    So we see that the Imami Shia were very adamant about lining up their beliefs so that they would find legitimacy in Sunni Hadith. It is therefore all too convenient that the Shia can now point to these Hadith as some sort of proof for Shi’ism.

    The Twelve Caliphs Cannot be the Shia Imams

    The Hadith in question declares that the Imams will be from the Quraish. It is in fact this part that negates both the Shia and Ibaadi claims. It is well-known that amongst the three groups (i.e. Sunnis, Shia, and Ibaadis), it is only the Sunnis that necessitated that the leadership be confined to the Quraish after the Prophet’s death. The Sunnis argued that the leadership of the Muslims must always be given to that party which makes up the majority group. Based upon the principle of majority rule, it was only fair that the leadership be given to the Quraishis who at the time of the Prophet’s death made up the majority group from amongst the Muslims.

    On the other hand, the Shia claim that the leadership must be confined to the Ahlel Bayt whereas the Ibaadis claim that the leadership can be given to any Muslim regardless of if he belongs to a minority group un-representative of the majority desire. Therefore, if this Hadith were truly in relation to the Shia Imams, then it should have stated that the twelve Caliphs would be from the progeny of the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) instead of using the term “from Quraish”. Indeed, this is a fact that the Shia were well-aware of and it was based upon this that they blamed the Sunnis for having “distorted” the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs, accusing the Sunnis of altering it from “Ahlel Bayt” or “Bani Hashim” to “Quraish.” Some Shia even refer to the Sunni Hadith of the twelve Caliphs as a “censored” or even “chopped up” version of the Prophet’s real words. The Shia then refer us to the “un-censored” version of the Hadith which is available in Shia books, as follows:

    “(There will be) from my descendants eleven leaders (who will) be noble and receive and understand (knowledge). The last of them will be al-Qa’im, who will fill the world with justice after it had been filled with tyranny.”

    So we see that while the Shia have historically used Sunni Hadith to back their claims, they end up having to distort these Hadith in order to make them apply more correctly to the Shia paradigm. The fact that the Shia need to “mend” the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs in order for it to work for the Shia belief is proof enough that the Hadith cannot be used as a proof against the Sunnis.

    A lay-person may argue that the Bani Hashim are within the clan of Quraish and therefore the Hadith still supports a Shia view. But such a person would be altogether ignorant of Arabic Balagha which necessitates that ascribing the Caliphs to the Quraish means that not all of them are from one particular clan of Quraish but rather they are from different groups from amongst the Quraish; otherwise, there was absolutely no reason that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) did not say that the Caliphs will be from Bani Hashim.

    Having stated that, ignorant Shia youth arguing over the internet will insist that the Hadith can still be applied to the twelve Imams of the Shia since Bani Hashim is part of the Quraish. We simply ask these youths to be honest with themselves: why did the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) use the vague wording that the Caliphs will be from the Quraish, as opposed to clearly stating that the twelve Imams would be from his descendants of the Ahlel Bayt? Common sense dictates that there is no reason that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) would have used the word “Caliph” as opposed to “Imam”, when in fact the Shia literature always refers to the twelve Imams, not the twelve Caliphs. Additionally, only two of the Imams served as Caliphs whereas the rest never became Caliphs. Furthermore, if the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) was willing the leadership to his descendants, then should he not state that specifically instead of saying that it was a position open to all the Quraish?

    We see that the Shia paradigm can only be forced upon this Hadith through brute intellectual force. A similar approach do we see from Qadianis who take our collection of Sunni Hadith and try to prove that their leader is the Mehdi. The truth of the matter is that the Shia would only have a clear argument if the Hadith stated that there would be twelve Imams from the Prophet’s descendants. Instead, the Shia have an “obscure Hadith” in which they are trying to force upon it their own interpretation, much in the same way that Qadianis do with many a Hadith.

    The Identity of the Twelve Caliphs

    Almost all the deviant sects (including the Imamis, the Zaydis, the Ismailis, the Ibaadis, the Nation of Islam, etc.) claim to know exactly who the twelve Caliphs are; they state with certainty who are the twelve Caliphs, they forge false Hadith to name these Caliphs, and then they say that whoever does not follow these twelve is deviant. This methodology differentiates the sects from the mainstream Muslims who do not claim to know exactly who are the twelve Caliphs. The Prophet’s prophecies were vague, and nobody can know exactly who or what they refer to.

    The Shia propagandists will oftentimes attack the Sunnis by asking us “who are the twelve Caliphs” and then they will laugh with joy when we cannot answer them with any certainty. And yet, this is nothing particular or peculiar about our lack of certainty with regards to this one specific prophecy, but rather we are similarly uncertain about the bulk of the Prophet’s prophecies. In another Hadith, the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) has stated that a mujaddid (reviver of the faith) would appear after every century; if we ask the Sunni scholars to name who were all the mujaddideen of the Ummah throughout the centuries, we find that they will not be able to name them. In fact, there is no way that anybody can know for certain even a single of these mujaddideen, namely because to say something like that with absolute certainty would be speaking about the Unseen without knowledge from Allah, which is considered a sin.

    Therefore, it is not fair for the Shia to demand for us to say for certainty who the twelve Caliphs are, when in fact our doctrine necessitates that we cannot talk about this with certainty as it being a thing only Allah knows. The vagueness of the Prophet’s prophecy is not at all limited to this one particular Hadith but can be seen in many other Hadith, such as the prophecy about Gog and Magog. Throughout the ages, people have guessed as to who Gog and Magog refers to, some saying that it refers to the Turks while others saying it refers to the Mongols, some say Gog and Magog have already come, whereas others say that they are yet to come–but nobody knows with certainty.

    Many of the prophecies of the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) were vague and we can only guess at their exact meaning; such is the nature of prophecies. So when we Sunnis are vague with who are the twelve caliphs in the Hadith, we are vague with all the prophecies in general, because we do not wish to speak about the Unseen without knowledge. Allah warns in the Quran:

    “Say: The things that my Lord has indeed forbidden are…saying things about Allah of which you have no knowledge.”

    (Quran, 7:33)

    And Allah warns against Dhann (conjecture), saying:

    “But of that they have no knowledge: they merely conjecture!”

    (Quran, 45:25)

    And Allah says further:

    “Most people are such that if you follow them they will lead you away from the right path, because they rely on conjecture only.”

    (Quran, 6:116)

    Allah warns again and again against conjecture on such matters:

    “Do not follow that of which you have no knowledge. Indeed the ear, the eye, and the heart each will be questioned.”

    (Quran, 17:36)

    The Shia who claim that they know with certainty the names of the twelve Caliphs are only conjecturing and only doing this in order to follow their own desires to bolster their polemical stance against the Sunnis. Allah says:

    “They follow but conjecture and that which they themselves desire.”

    (Quran, 53:23)

    We have only been given the knowledge that there will be twelve Caliphs but we cannot say for certainty who they are, as Allah says:

    “You have been given but little knowledge.”

    (Quran, 17:85)

    The Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) made all sorts of prophecies, and the examples we could cite are numerous. In one Hadith, the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) says:

    “By Him in Whose hand is my soul, the Hour will not come until…a man speaks to his whip or his shoe, and his thigh will tell him about what happened to his family after he left.”

    This has led some people to postulate that this Hadith refers to cell-phones, because cell-phones are placed in a man’s pockets next to his thigh. People have further guessed that the “whips” were an attempt to describe wires. Whatever the case, we can only guess at the exact meaning, and this is the case for most of the Prophet’s prophecies–including the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs.

    Therefore, the Sunni scholars hold that we do not know for certain who are the twelve Caliphs referred to in the Hadith. Furthermore, it is speaking without knowledge to claim to know for certain who they are; unlike the Shia and other deviant sects who forge Hadith to back their own list of twelve Caliphs, the Sunnis resort to saying “Allahu Aalim” (Allah knows Best). Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Hajar says about the Hadith of the twelve Caliphs:

    “No one has much knowledge about this particular Hadith”

    (Ibn Hajar al-’Asqalani, Fath al-Bari 16:338)

    The truthful scholars of Sunni Islam can only therefore guess at who the twelve Caliphs are, and it should be understood that these are guesses at best; only deviants manipulate the Word of Allah claiming certainty: the Imamis are adamant about their twelve, the Zaydis are adamant about their twelve, the Ibaadis (descendants of the Khawaarij) are adamant about their twelve, the Ismailis are adamant about their twelve, etc. We shall let these deviant groups bicker amongst each other about who the twelve Caliphs are. We urge our Sunni brothers not to fall into the traps of the Shia propagandists who demand to know who the twelve Caliphs are, and then they enjoy to see the Sunnis replying with varying lists from different scholars, as if this is some sort of proof against Sunni Islam! Like all other prophecies, we cannot know for certain who or what it refers to; it is not only that we do not know, but rather even more than that, namely that we cannot possibly know for certain who the twelve are, as this would be speaking about the Unseen without knowledge from Allah. This is a doctrinal view and it is what differentiates the mainstream Muslims from the deviant sects.

    Various scholars have furthered their own guesses as to who the twelve Caliphs must be, but these guesses cannot be taken with absolute certainty, and due to this fact, any contradiction in various lists is not a sign of weakness but rather it is a natural result of a doctrinal view that forbids speaking with certainty on such matters. Therefore, no scholar would say that these are definitely without a doubt the twelve Caliphs, but rather he will speculate as to whom he thinks it may refer to.

    The Rightly Guided Caliphs

    Perhaps the best guess is that the twelve Caliphs refers to al-Khulafaa al-Rashidoon (the Rightly Guided Caliphs). There is Ijma (consensus) on the fact that the first four Caliphs were Rightly Guided Caliphs and the term is most often used for them. However, in addition to these four, we say that Ali’s son, Hasan (رضّى الله عنه), was one of the Rightly Guided Caliphs. The Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said:

    “The Caliphate of Prophecy will last thirty years; then Allah will give the rule of His Kingdom to whomever He wills.”

    (Sunan Abu Dawood)

    Indeed, the rule of the first four Caliphs lasted twenty-nine years and six months; Hasan (رضّى الله عنه) ruled for another six months bringing the rule of the Rashidoon to thirty years in conformity to the Prophet’s prophecy.

    Umar ibn Abdul Aziz (رضّى الله عنه) is also included amongst the Rightly Guided Caliphs. Therefore, the twelve Caliphs refer to:

    1. Abu Bakr As-Siddiq
    2. Umar ibn al-Khattab
    3. Uthman bin Affan
    4. Ali ibn abi Talib
    5. Hasan ibn Ali
    6. Umar ibn Abdul Aziz

    This means that six of the twelve have come to pass, and six more will come to pass before the Day of Judgment, the last of whom will likely be Imam Mehdi.

    The “Cacophonous” Response of the Ahlus Sunnah

    The Shia claim that the Sunni response to who the twelve Caliphs are is “cacophonous” due to the fact that scholars do not agree as to who the twelve Caliphs are. This may in fact be true, but the Shia would be lying if they were to say that they were always united as to who were the twelve Caliphs. We read:

    The Imamate during the life of the last six Imams of the Twelver Imamites (al-Imamiyya al-Ithna ashariyya) was distinguished by the many splits which occured after the death of each Imam, who was considered by the Imamites as one of the twelve Imams, over the recognition of his successor.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.56)

    In fact, after the death of each Imam, the Imami Shia ran around like headless chickens trying to figure out who was the next Imam; absolute confusion would descend into their ranks as to who was the next of the twelve Imams. After the death of each Imam of the Shia, numerous Shia sects emerged, each claiming that another person was the Imam! So if the Shia of today would like to laugh at the Sunnis for not knowing who the Imam is, let them also laugh at their own ancestors who did not know who the Imam was!

    The only reason that the Shia of today have some sort of unanimity with regards to who the twelve Imams are is because Shah Ismail I, the ruler of the Safavid Empire, forcibly enforced–by the sword–his brand of Shi’ism upon the masses of Persia. By thus doing so, he succeeded in converting the masses to one strain of Shi’ism all of which followed one set of twelve Imams. And yet, even today there exist some minority sects of the Shia–such as the Zaydis–who believe in a different set of twelve Imams.

    It is in fact impossible for the mainstream Muslims to say who the twelve Caliphs are when it is likely that the prophecy is yet to be fulfilled! Once the twelve Caliphs have all come and passed, only then will it become clearer to the Muslims as to whom they are. To give an analogy, the Muslims living in the time of Abu Bakr’s Caliphate did not know exactly who the Rightly Guided Caliphs (i.e. the Caliphate of Prophecy) would be; would it have been fair to ask them who is being referred to in the Hadith which says that the Caliphate of Prophecy will last thirty years? Of course, at that time they would not have known since the prophecy had not yet been fulfilled! Only after the prophecy was fulfilled was it possible to pinpoint who “the Caliphate of Prophecy” referred to.

    Another Twelve in Sahih Hadith

    It is altogether too easy to haphazardly apply vague Hadith in order to further one’s own cause. If the Shia insist upon doing this, then let us point them to another twelve people mentioned in Sahih Muslim. The Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said:

    “In my Ummah, there would be twelve hypocrites and they would not be admitted to Paradise and they would not smell its odor, until the camel would pass through a needle’s hole.”

    (Sahih Muslim, Book 38, Number 6689,
    http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamen...m/038.smt.html)

    The Khawaarij or the Nawaasib could argue that the twelve hypocrites here refer to the twelve Imams of the Shia. Do the Shia see how easy it is to twist vague Hadith in order to further one’s own cause?

    Conclusion

    Shi’ism is an off-shoot of mainstream Islam, and many of the concepts of mainstream Islam were borrowed and incorporated. Not only this, but the Shia–like deviant sects of any religion–have always sought to justify their own deviant beliefs by basing them, albeit loosely, in the books of the mainstream. At the time of Hasan al-Askari’s death, the Hadith in regards to the twelve Caliphs was well-known amongst the Muslim masses. We read:

    (These traditions were used by) numerous Islamic groups, particularly the Zaydites, in their struggle for power during the Umayyad period (which) shows that these traditions (Hadith) were well-known among the Muslims of that period.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.18)

    Thus, the Shia terminated their Imamah at the number twelve in order to conform to the Hadith of twelve Caliphs, and therefore it is not at all surprising that the Imams are twelve in number just as the Sunni Hadith says. We read:

    The Prophetic traditions concerning the twelve Imams related by the Sunnite and the Zaydite traditionists were also narrated by the Imamites. They applied these traditions to their twelve Imams and added traditions of the Imams themselves.

    (The Occultation of the Twelfth Imam: A Historical Background, by Dr. Jassim M. Hussain, p.21)

    The truth of the matter is that the Sunni belief in the twelve Caliphs and in Imam Mehdi differs dramatically from the Shia conception: the Sunnis do not believe that these Caliphs are infallible, nor are they appointed by God, nor are they superior to the Prophets, etc.

    Article Written By: Ibn al-Hashimi, www.ahlelbayt.com
    إن كان حب آل البيت رفضا فليشهد الثقلان إني رافضي


    من أقوال الإمام الشافعي

    Please Take a look in the Thread Dedicated to our Beloved Prophet PBUH by clicking here.


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    Default Re: Hadith about the 12 Imams from the Quraish?

    No idea why it posted twice
    Last edited by TripolySunni; 17-10-2010 at 06:30 PM.
    إن كان حب آل البيت رفضا فليشهد الثقلان إني رافضي


    من أقوال الإمام الشافعي

    Please Take a look in the Thread Dedicated to our Beloved Prophet PBUH by clicking here.


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