Chapter 118

The Birth of Ja‘far, Muhammad ibn Ali (a.s.)

Abu Ja‘far (a.s.) was born in the year seventy five AH. He passed away in the year one hundred fourteen at the age of fifty seven. He was buried in al-Baqi’ cemetery in Madina near the gave of his father, Ali ibn al-Husayn (a.s.). His mother was ’Umm ‘Abdallah daughter of al-Hassan ibn Ali ibn abu Talib, may Allah grant him and his rightly guided offspring blessings.


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Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from from Muhammad ibn Ahmad from ‘Abdallah ibn Ahmad from Salih ibn Mazid from ‘Abdallah ibn al-Mughira from abu al-Sabbah from abu Ja‘far (a.s.) who has said the following. "Once my mother was sitting next to a wall. The wall began to break and we heard a intense crumbling noise. She pointed out with her hands saying, "No, for the sake of al-Mustfa (one of the titles of the Messenger of Allah) Allah has not granted you permission to fall." The wall remained hanging in the air until she passed that spot. My father gave one hundred Dinars as charity in appreciation and an expression of gratitude for Allah’s favor." Abu al-Sabbah has said, "Once abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.) mentioned his grandmother and said, ‘She was a truthful person. No woman was ever found in the descendants of al-Hassan (a.s.) like her (in excellence)."

Muhammad ibn al-Hassan has narrated from ‘Abdallah ibn Ahmad has narrated a similar hadith.


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A number of our people has narrated from Ahmad ibn Muhammad from Muhammad ibn Sinan from Aban ibn Taghlib from abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.) who has said the following. "Jabir ibn‘Abdallah al-Ansari was last surviving of the companions of the Messenger of Allah. He was a devoted follower of us, Ahl al-Bayt. He would sit in the Mosque of the Messenger of Allah, wearing a black turban. He would call, "O Baqir al-‘Ilm, O Baqir al-‘Ilm, (a person of deep knowledge)" The people of Madina would say, "Jabir is hallucinating." He would say, "No, by Allah, I do not hallucinate, but I heard the Messenger of Allah say, "You will soon meet a man from me whose name will be as my name and his manners would be as my manners. He will dig very deep in knowledge"’ This is what maakes me say what I say." The Imam (a.s.) has said, "Jabir would still come and go and one day in one of the roads of Madina when passing he found a few of the school children among who Muhammad ibn Ali (a.s.) was also present (for a reason other than schooling. Imams are not heard of as attending schools). He looked at him and called him (Muhammad ibn Ali) to himself. The boy came to him and then he said, "Go back." The boy went back. Then he said, "I swear by the One in Whose hand is my life, (that I see) manners as the manners of the Messenger of Allah. O boy, What is your name?" He replied, "My name is Muhammad ibn Ali ibn al-Husayn (a.s.). Jabir came forwards and began to kiss his head and say, "May Allah take my soul and the souls of my parents in service for your cause, your great-great grandfather told me to convey his greetings and Salam to you and would say all of that. The Imam (a.s.) has said, "Muhammad ibn Ali ibn al-Husayn came to his father and he was anxious. He explained to him about Jabir. His father asked, "Did Jabir really do this?" He replied, "Yes, he did so." The Imam (a.s.) said, "My son, stay home (and do not expose yourself to the enemy because Jabir will maintain secrecy)." Jabir thereafter would come to him mornings and evenings and the people of Madina would say, "It is so strange that Jabir, the only surving companion of the Messenger of Allah would come to a boy on both ends of the day everyday." Very shortly Ali ibn al-Husayn (a.s.) passed away Muhammad ibn Ali (a.s.) would go to visit Jabir out of respect for his being a companion of the Messenger of Allah and would speak to people from Allah, the Most Holy, the Most High. The people of madina would say, "We have not seen anyone as bold as he is." On hearing this from them he began to speak to them from the Messenger of Allah. The people of Madina began to say, "We have not seen a greater liar as he is because he speaks from one whom he has never seen." On hearing this from them he began to narrate to them from Jabir. The Imam (a.s.) has said, "They would accept what he would narrate from Jabir ibn ‘Abdallah. However, Jabir would come to him and would from him (Muhammad ibn ali ibn al-Husayn (a.s.))."


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A number of our people has narrated from Ahmad ibn Muhammad from Ali ibn al-Hakam from al-Muthanna al-Hannat from abu Basir who has said the following. "Once I went to see abu Ja‘far (a.s.) and asked him, "Are you the heirs of the Messenger of Allah?" He said, "Yes, we are his heirs." I then asked, "Was the Messenger of Allah the heir of the prophets and knew all that they knew?" He said to me, "Yes, it is true." I then asked, "Do you have the power to bring the dead back to life and cure the lepers, and the blind?" He said, "Yes, we do have such powers by the permission of Allah." The he said to me, "Come closer to me, O abu Muhammad." I went closer to him and he rubbed my face and my eyes and saw the sun, the skies, the earth, the houses and all things in the town. Then he said to me, "Do you like to live this way and will have what others have and be responsible for whatever they will be held responsible on the Day of Judgment or like to live as before and will have paradise purely?" I said, "I would like to live as I lived before." He rubbed my eyes and I found myself as before." The narrator has said that he told it to ibn abu ‘Umayr who said, "I testify that this is true just as the day is true."


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Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from Muhammad ibn Ahmad from Muhammad ibn al-Husayn from Muhammad ibn Ali from ‘Asim ibn Hamid from Muhammad ibn Muslim who has said the following. "One day I was in the presence of abu Ja‘far (a.s.) that a pair of turtledove came and sat on the wall and exchanged voices as they usually do. Abu Ja‘far (a.s.) then also exchanged voices with them for a while. They then flew away and on the other wall the male sounded to the fame for a while and then both of them flew away. I then asked The Imam (a.s.), "May Allah take my soul in service for your cause, "What were these birds?" The Imam (a.s.) said, "O ibn Muslim, all that Allah has created, such as birds, animals or other things that have life they obey us better than people. The male dove was suspicious about the female and she denied it on oath which the male did not accept. Then she asked if he would abide by the decision of Muhammad ibn Ali? He agreed and told him that he had wronged his pair then he believed her."


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Al-Husayn ibn Muhammad has narrated from Mu‘alla ibn Muhammad from Ali ibn Asbat from Salih ibn Hamza from his father from abu Bakr al-Hadrami who has said the following. "When abu Ja‘far (a.s.) was taken to al-Sham (Damascus) to the court of hisham ibn ‘Abd al-Malik. When arrived at his door he (Hisham) instructed his people from the Amawids, "When I will finish exasperating Muhammad ibn Ali (a.s.) and stop then each of you one after the other should reprimand and level blames on him." He then ordered to allow Muhammad ibn Ali to come to his presence. When abu Ja‘far (a.s.) arrived he made a gesture with his hand to all of them and offered a general greeting. He then sat down. This increased the disappointment of Hisham because he did not he did not address him as the caliph and sat down without his permission. Hisham then began to reprimand and scold him and said to him among other things, "O Muhammad ibn Ali, why is it that one or the other from cause disunity among the Muslims and call people to follow him thinking that he is the Imam because of his ignorance and foolishness. He scolded him as much as he wanted. When he became quite others one after the other began to annoy and nag him. When they all became quite, he rose and stood up and said, "O people, what is that you want and where are you headed? Through us, Allah granted you guidance to the first one of you and through us the last of you can receive guidance. If you have a temporary power to us belongs the future power and there will be no power after our power because to us belong the consequences as Allah, the Most Majestic, the Most gracious, has said, "The final victory is for the pious ones." (7:128)." He ordered to imprison him. In the prison to whoever that he spoke he would sympathize with him. The guard came to Hisham and said, "O Amir al-Mu’minin, I am afraid for from the people al-Sham (Damascus). They may remove you from this position. He gave him the full report. Hisham then ordered to escort the Imam (a.s.) and his people to Madina. He ordered his people not to allow the Imam and his people to go to marketplaces. They were denied food and water. They traveled three days without food and water until they arrived at Madyan. They were left behind the locked doors therein. People of the Imam complained to him for hanger and thirst. The Imam (a.s.) has said the he then climbed a hill above them and said loudly, "O people of Madyan, the town of unjust people. I am Baqiyat Allah (the power that Allah has kept in reserve) as He has said, "If you are true believers then know that the profit (the reserved power) which God has left for you is better for you (than what you may gain through deceitful ways). I am not responsible for your deeds." (11:86) The Imam (a.s.) has said that among them there was an old man who went to them (people of the town) and said, "By Allah, this is the call of Shu‘ayb the Prophet of Allah. If you would not go to this man in the marketplaces, you will be seized from the above and below. Believe me and obey me this time but you may reject me next time. I am giving you a good advise." The Imam (a.s.) has said, ‘They came out quickly to Muhammad ibn Ali (a.s.) and his people in the marketplace. The news reached Hisham ibn ‘Abd al-Malik who summoned the old man and he was taken to the court but it is not known what did he do to him."

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Sa‘d. ibn ‘Abdallah and al-Himyari all have narrated from Ibrahim ibn Mahziyar from his brother, ali ibn Mhaziyar from al-Husayn ibn Sa‘id from Muhammad ibn Sinan from ibn Muskan from abu Basir from abu ‘Abdallah who has said the following. "Muhammad ibn Ali al-Baqir passed away at the age of fifty seven, in the year one hundred fourteen AH. He lived for nineteen years and two months after Ali ibn al-Husayn (a.s.)."