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Chapter 89

The Obligation and Duty of the People at the Time of the Passing away of the Imam (a.s.)

H 983, Ch. 89, h 1

Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from from Muhammad ibnlh from Safwan from ya‘qub ibn Shu‘ayb who has said the following. "I asked abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.), ‘If something would happen to the Imam what should then the people do?" The Imam (a.s.) said, "Where are the words of Allah, the Most Majestic, the Most gracious, ‘Not all believers have to become specialists in religious learning. Why do not some people from each group of believers seek to become specialists in religious learning and, after completing their studies, guide their group so that they will have fear of God.’" (9:122) The Imam (a.s.) said, "They will good reason to be excused as long as they are searching also those who wait for them until they complete their religious education and return back to them."

H 984, Ch. 89, h 2

Ali ibn Ibrahim has narrated from Muhammad ibn ‘Isa from Yunus ibn ‘Abd al-Rahman who has said that narrated to us Hammad from ‘Abd al-A‘la’ who has said the following. "I asked abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.) about the statement of Sunni Muslims (al-‘Amma) that says the Messenger of Allah has said, "If a person would die without having an Imam his death would be as if he has died as the death of ignorance (pre-Islamic age of darkness)" The Imam (a.s.) said, " That is very true, by Allah." I then asked, "what if the Imam would pass away and a person is in Khurasan and does not know who the executor of the will of the Imam (a.s.) is, is this good excuse for him?" He (the Imam (a.s.) said, "No, that is not a good reason. When the Imam leaves this world the authority of the executor nof his applies to those would live in the area. Also the obligation search and learn about one’s duties apply to those who are not in area but who learned about the passing away of the Imam. Allah, the Most Majestic, the Most Gracious, has said, "Not all believers have to become specialists in religious learning. Why do not some people from each group of believers seek to become specialists in religious learning and, after completing their studies, guide their group so that they will have fear of God." (9:122) I then said, "What if they did went out to find out but some of them would die before they could find out?" He said, "Allah, the Most Majestic, the Most Gracious, has said, ". . . and one who dies, after having abandoned his home to get near to God and His Messenger, will receive his reward from God. . . ." (4:100) I if some of them would reach your town but would find out that you have closed your door and the curtains are drawn closed. You would not call them to yourself and there is no one to guide them to you. How then the will know about you?" He said, "They would know about me through the book that Allah has revealed." I then asked, "How Allah, the Most Majestic, the Most Gracious, has said it?" He said, "I know that you have spoken to me about before this day also." I said, "That is right." He then said, "Recall what Allah has said about Ali (a.s) and what the Messenger of Allah said to him about Hassan and Husayn and What Allah has specially said about Ali (a.s) and what the Messenger of Allah has said about him about his will to him and hid appointing him and their sufferings and the acknowledgements of al-Hassan and al-Husayn of such facts. Recall the will of al-Hassan and his delivering it to al-Husayn. Allah has said, "The Prophet has more authority over the believers than themselves. His wives are their mothers. The relatives are closer to each other, according to the Book of God, . ." .(33:6)

I then said, "People speak about abu Ja‘far‘far (a.s) and say, "How is it that Imamat (leadership with Divine authority has stepped out for him from among all the sons of his father even though they are all relatives and older than him and those younger than him did receive it just because they were younger?"

He said, "The one would possess this matter (Leadership with Divine Authority) can be recognized through three evidence that are not found with other people. He must have greater priority to the preceding Imam and that he would be the executor of the will of the preceding Imam. With him there must be the Armaments of the Messenger of Allah and the document of his will. This document is with me and no one disputes it." I then asked, "Is that kept secret and hidden for fear from the rulers?" He said, "There is nothing secret and hidden for which there is no clear evidence available. What is there my father entrusted to me. When he wasw about to leave this world he asked me to call people to bear testimony for him. I then called four people from Quraysh among them was Nafi‘ salve of ‘Abdallah ibn ‘Umar. My father said, "Write down, ‘This is how the will of Jacob to his children reads, "God has chosen this religion for you. You must not leave this world unless you are a Muslim (submitted to the will of the Lord of the Universe)." (2:132) Muhammad ibn Ali made the same kind of will to his son, Ja‘far ibn Muhammad annd commanded him to shroud him in his own gown which he would use during his Friday prayers. That his own turban must be used for him, that the surface of his grave should be given a square shape, raised three inches from the ground and thereafter leave it that much only. Thereafter he wrpped up the document of the will and asked the witnesses to leave saying, "May Allah grant you blessings. When they left I asked, "What was in it O father, that asked them to bear testimony to?" He said, "I did not like that you will be defeated and people will say, ‘He left this world without a will. I wanted it to be a supporting authority for you. This the fact that help one who comes to the town and asks, "To who did so and so made a will? And it is said to him, "The will was made to so and so." I then asked, "What he (Imam) would partners in the will?" He said, "You must ask him. He will explain it to you."

 

H 985, Ch. 89, h 3

Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn ‘Isa from Muhammad ibn Khalid from Nadr ibn Suwayd from Yahya al-Halabi from Barid ibn Mu‘awiya from Muhammad ibn Muslim who has said the following. "I said to abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.), "May Allah grant you good health, we heard that you were not feeling good and it caused us great anxiety. Would that you inform or teach us who will be the succeeding Imam." The Imam (a.s.) said, "Ali (a.s.) was the scholar and knowledge is inherited. No scholar dies except that leaves behind a scholar whose knowledge is of the same level or whatever Allah would will." I then said will people be excused for not knowing the succeeding Imam after the death of the preceding Imam?" He then said, "The people of this area (city of Madina) will not be excused. People of other areas will dealt with according to their abilities. Allah has said, "Not all believers have to become specialists in religious learning. Why do not some people from each group of believers seek to become specialists in religious learning and, after completing their studies, guide their group so that they will have fear of God." (9:122)

The narrator has said that he then asked the Imam (a.s.), "What if some of them would die before completing their education and search.?" He said, "such people will be of the ones mentioned in the words of Allah herein below. ". . . and one who dies, after having abandoned his home to get near to God and His Messenger, will receive his reward from God. . . ." (4:100) The narrator has said that he then asked the Imam (a.s.), "If people would come to the Imam then by what means would they recognize him?" He said, "The Imam is granted serenity, dignity and an awesome presence."

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