Thursday August. 30, 2018 Or Zihajjah 18 in lunar calendar, marks Eid al-Ghadir, the day Holy Prophet Mohammad (PBUH&HP) designated the commander of the faithful, Imam Ali (AS) as his successor according to a divine commandment.
On this auspicious occasion, most sincere congratulations to all real Muslims, To all Shia people, to you respected readers all around the world and special one to the most exalted personality of the world, to the Threshold of His Holy existence, Infallible living Imam of the present time, Imam Mahdi (AS), the Awaited, Expected and Promised One, may Almighty Allah hasten his reappearance.
On this auspicious occasion, it is a good opportunity to have a brief glance at such a very important Islamic historical event, a historical grand meeting held by Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP).
1 – Faith in Mastership or Their Divine Guidance
lmamat literally means to lead, and Imam means leader. In Islamic terminology, Imam means a divinely appointed successor of the Prophet (PBUH&HP) who is to be obeyed in secular and religious matters. As Holy Quran points out: “And we appointed, from among them, leaders, giving guidance under our command” (Chapter XXXII, Verse No.24.).
In brief, Shia believes that:
- a) Imams like prophets are infallible, i.e., they are above sin and hence, innocent.
- b) Imams completely know of all revealed laws of God and possess all knowledge and criteria necessary to guide the nation.
- c) Imams do not issue any order of divine nature on their own, nor one on the legislation. Imams rather follow and implement the Book of God (Holy Quran) and legislation, as well as lead community in that light.
- d) lmams act only according to the divine command of religion. They have all the excellent traits and good character required for leadership. They are the cream of humankind and a flawless mirror of Islam.
- e) Imams are human beings, creatures of God like other people, and one not above illness or death.
- f) Imams are Twelve, no more or less than that. The eleven Imams had lived and were martyred. The twelfth Imam, Mahdi (AS), the only Savior, is alive, just like Holy Prophet Jesus Christ and Khizr.
- g) All Imams’ names, according to the numerous and the explicit statement, of the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP), were predicted such as:
- “After me there will be twelve Imams” Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP).
- “After me there will be twelve Imams: The first of whom is Ali Ibn Abi Talib (AS) and the last Qaem (AI-Mahdi) (AS). They are the vicegerent and proofs of God for my nation”.
2 – Importance of Eid al-Ghadir
Out of numerous sayings of the infallibles, followings are considerable:
- a) “Eid al-Ghadir is the most exalted Eid of my nation”, Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP).
- b) Master of the faithful, Imam Ali (AS) said: “The day of Ghadir is the day of high status (for the believers all)”.
- c) Imam Jafar Sadeq (AS) said: “Eid al-Ghadir is superior of Eid al-Fitr, Eid al-Adha, Friday and the day of Arafat, and it has a greater honor before Allah.”
- d) Imam Jafar Sadeq (AS) also said: “Eid al-Ghadir is more famous in the heavens than the earth.”
- e) Imam Jafar Sadeq (AS) likewise said: “I swear to Allah, I swear to Allah, I swear to Allah, that Almighty Allah has not created a more honorable and respectable day than the day of Ghadir.”
- f) Imam Sadeq (AS) also said: “Allah has not sent any messenger unless he observed Eid al-Ghadir and respected it.”
- g) Imam Reza (AS) said: “Eid al-Ghadir is the Eid of the progeny of Holy Prophet Mohammad (PBUH&HP)”.
- h) Imam Reza (AS) also said: “Eid al-Ghadir is the day of congratulating each other. If a believer meets his brother in religion, he should say: All praise to Allah, who destined us among there adhering to the mastership (Velayat) of the commander of the faithful and his infallible descendants (AS).
3 – Ghadir Khum, Zihajjeh 18, 10 A.H.
The land of Juhfah between Mecca and Medina was situated beside a small pond (Ghadir) called Khum.
It was here that the most important event in the history of Islam, which nobody can ever forget, occurred. More than 110,000 people were returning from the Last Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca) of the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP). They called it the farewell Hajj.
Everyone realized from the words of the Holy Prophet(PBUH&HP) that this was the last Hajj ceremony which people would perform with him.
It was here that the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) ordered the pilgrim caravan to halt. It was blistering hot, but the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) stopped to hold congregational afternoon prayers. He then ordered a pedestal of camel saddles to be erected. He stood on the pedestal where everyone could see him and started to speak. His speech was so eloquent and so sweet that the people all forgot the heat.
The speech of the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) was of great importance and quite long and contained some very interesting and important points. Some of the most important points should be mentioned here: His honor stated “O, people I am a human being like you. In the near future, Izrail, the angel of death, will come as a messenger from our creator and I will accept his invitation of death. Yes, I will soon leave you, but I will leave you two worthy and priceless reminders of me.”
The people were all ears. This was the first time this subject had been mentioned by the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP). Of course, people knew that this was the last Hajj of the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP), but had not heard before that he explicitly knew about his own death. It was even more important for the people to learn what these two precious trust were. The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) told the people that these two things would, to a certain extent, fill his empty place and that he would introduce them to the people. All were listening with great curiosity, when he continued, “People! The first and greatest thing I leave with you is God’s book, the book of light, filled with knowledge and guidance. Oh, people! Take God’s book and keep to it.”
In this part of his speech, he recommended and encouraged people to act according to the Quran.
Then he said: “People my second trust that I leave in your care are my household members.”
Here the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP), paused, as if he knew the followers would oppress his relatives, then he said ”Yes” three times. “People! In your dealings with my relatives, I ask you to remember God. Don’t be curt in regard to their status.”
After pausing again, he continued: “I inform you, from the time you grasp onto these two reminders of me, be sure, you will never go astray. And know this, which without any doubt, the Quran and my family will never be separated from one another, till the day of resurrection, when they will join me by the Fountain of Kauthar.”
The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) spoke that last sentence with a particular firmness. The people were certain that he put special emphasis on those subjects.
Then he said: “Yes, I swear by God, in that time, the day of resurrection and besides the fountain by Kauthar, I will ask both of them, the Quran and my relatives, how they were treated after me.”
The words of the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) were full of meaning and spoken in anguish. The audience understood much from those words.
Another important event that happened on the scorching hot day of Ghadir, Zihajjeh 18, 10 A.H., was that the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) asked Ali (AS) to come to him. He took Ali’s (AS) hand and said: “O, people! Do you know that Allah is my master and I am the master of the believers and I am worthier than they?” They said: “Yes, O Messenger of Allah (S).”
He said: “Of whomsoever I am his master, then Ali (AS) is his master too.O, Allah, love the one who loves Ali (AS) and bear enmity with the one who bears enmity with him.”
Salman (one of his closest companion) stood on his feet and said: “What kind of vicegerency?” He said: “A vicegerency like my vicegerency upon the one whom I am worthier than.”
Thereafter, the Exalted Allah revealed: “Today, I have perfected for you your religion …”
The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) proclaimed Allah’s greatness and said: “Allahu Akbar! (God is [the] greatest) The completion of my prophethood and the perfection of Allah’s religion is only after Ali’s (AS) after me.”
At this moment Abu-Bakr and Omar stood on their feet and said: “O Messenger, of Allah(S), does this verse exclusively refer to Ali (AS)? The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) said: “Yes, it refers to Ali (AS) and my legatees till the Day of Judgment.”
They said: “O Messenger of Allah (S), name (mention) them to us.” The Holy Prophet(S) said: “Ali (AS) (who is) my brother, my successor (vazir), my heir, my legatee, and my vicegerent amongst my nation and the custodian of every believer after me. Then, my son Hassan (AS), the Hussein (AS), followed by nine more form the progeny of Hussein (AS). They are with the Quran and the Quran is with them. They shall not separate from it and the Quran(too) shall not separate from them until they will join me by the fountain of Kauthar.”
Before this, the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HF), in the pact of brotherhood, proclaimed that believers were each other’s brothers and can even ordered them, two by two, to make brotherhood pacts. This made it clear that rank of brother was higher than that of a friend. However, on that strange but memorable day of Ghadir, Ali (AS) was not given the title of friend or brother but was considered higher and was introduced as supervisor and authority, a governor, the leader and Imam of all Muslims.
On that day, Zihajjeh 18, 10 A.H. (Ghadir), during the celebration, Ali (AS) was officially designated as the Prophet’s (PBUH&HP) successor. He had all the ranks of the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP), except, of course, the prophecy.
At the end of the speech, the whole audience (over 110,000) pledged their allegiance to Ali (AS), and congratulated him on his new title.
4 – Not only at Ghadir Khum
Not only at Ghadir Khum but on several occasions, the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) said such things about Ali (AS).
The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) said: “Of whomsoever I am his prophet then Ali (AS) is his chief.” The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) said: “I and Ali (AS) were created from the same tree and the other people are from different tree.”
And the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) placed him in a position as Haroun(AS) had with Musa (AS). Then he said to him: “Your position to me is as Haroun (AS) was to Musa(AS), except that there will be no prophet after me.”
The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) married him to his daughter, the chief of the ladies of the worlds. Moreover, he made for him lawful [Ali (AS)] whatever was lawful for himself in his mosque, and he closed all the doors (leading to the mosque) except the door of his house.
Then he [the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP)] entrusted to him his knowledge and his wisdom.
Then the Holy Prophet (S) said: “I am the city of knowledge and Ali (AS) is its gate. One who wishes (to enter) the city (of knowledge) and wisdom should enter through that gate.”
Then he said: “You are my brother and successor and inheritor. Your flesh is from my flesh and your blood from my blood, and peace with you is peace with me and fighting against you is fighting against me. In addition, the faith is mixed with your flesh and your blood, and it is mixed with my flesh and my blood. Tomorrow you will be my companion at the fountain of Kauthar. You will pay my debt and you will fulfill my obligations. Moreover, your followers (Shia) will be (siting) on the pulpits of light. They, with their bright faces surrounding me, will be my neighbors in paradise.”
The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HF) said: “O Ali (AS), had you not been there, the believers would not have been recognized after me.”
We recite the remaining from the most authentic Nudbah supplications:
“And Ali (AS) was a guidance [to prevent people] from deviation after him [the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP)] and a light to destroying darkness and the strong rope of Allah and his straight path. Neither his proximity in ties of relationship with the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) can be preceded by anyone, nor his preceding in religion. And (no one) can overtake my virtues from among his, the Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP), virtues.
He, Ali (AS), follows the path of the Messenger, may the blessings of Allah be upon both of them and their family. And the fights on (the basis) interpretation, and he causes not any blame by any rebuke in the way of Allah. Indeed, Ali (AS) has spilled the blood of the heroes of Arabia and killed their valiant fighters. Then he filled the hearts of those (fighters) of Badr, Khaibar, Hunain, and others with a hatred and malice.
Then (they) rose in enmity against him, and (they) attacked to fight against him, till (such time) that he killed the breakers of allegiance, the unjust, and the ignorant·
The order of the Messenger of Allah, peace of Allah be upon him and his family, was not obeyed about the leaders (lmams (AS)) one after the other. Except a few from them (believers who remained faithful in) observing their rights.
Since the Earth belongs to Allah, He gives to whomsoever He wishes from amongst His servants· And the end is: (only) for those who guard against evil. And glorious is our Lord. Verily, the promise of our lord is certainly to be fulfilled. And Allah never goes against His promise, and He is the Almighty, the All-Wise.”
The article was written by Dr. A.R. Ghavidel (Clinical Psychologist), Javan counseling (Psychological Services) Center.