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In the Name of God بسم الله

Imamah in Usul ad-Din

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After reading some input on other topics by brothers/sisters such as @Qa'im, I have a few questions:

Is belief in Imamah one of the five essential Usul ad-Din, according to our ahadith? If so, why are its rejectors still considered Muslims? And lastly (while in no way doubting it) as one of the 5 base pillars of Islam, why isn't it explicitly mentioned in the Qur'an, (in regards to the Prophet's 12 direct successors) like Tawheed, Adalah, Nabuwwah, and Qiyamah are?

I would appreciate if someone could help me with these questions. Just wanna get my aqeedah right :D 


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"Righteousness is not that you turn your faces toward the east or the west, but [true] righteousness is [in] one who believes in Allah , the Last Day, the angels, the Book, and the prophets and gives wealth, in spite of love for it, to relatives, orphans, the needy, the traveler, those who ask [for help], and for freeing slaves; [and who] establishes prayer and gives zakah; [those who] fulfill their promise when they promise; and [those who] are patient in poverty and hardship and during battle. Those are the ones who have been true, and it is those who are the righteous." 2:177

"The Messenger has believed in what was revealed to him from his Lord, and [so have] the believers. All of them have believed in Allah and His angels and His books and His messengers, [saying], "We make no distinction between any of His messengers." And they say, "We hear and we obey. [We seek] Your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the [final] destination." (2:285)

"O you who have believed, believe in Allah and His Messenger and the Book that He sent down upon His Messenger and the Scripture which He sent down before. And whoever disbelieves in Allah, His angels, His books, His messengers, and the Last Day has certainly gone far astray."(4:136)

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To say we believe in Prophets and books and Messengers, and Angels because Quran says so is circular reasoning. The Quran emphasizes in different verses to believe in these things, but it never says to believe in these things because they are in the Quran. Rather through reasoning of Quran, they are proven. Believe it or not, the same thing that proves to us that God sent Messenger, books, revelations, the same logic presented in Quran, proves Ahlulbayt (as). Of course people who want to believe in Prophets because Islam says so are in circular reasoning.

That said there is many verses about Ahlulbayt (as) and their holy chosen position in Quran. Another thing to keep it perspective is that recognition of the family of Mohammad is part of Salah as we been ordered to bless them in Salah, and of course, with Suratal Fatiha, this has meaning. So every time you read Salah mentioned in Quran remember that Auli-Mohammad are part of that.


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The word Imamah means to lead and an Imam is whatever that is followed, be it a person and individual or something else, and whether it leads to the right path or the wrong path. But in Islamic terms it denotes the leading of people by Allah that covers all aspects of human life, even those which are related to the hereafter, and is carried out by a complete person as successor of the prophet.

From Shia theologians’ point of view "Imamah" like "Prophethood" is considered one of the "Osule Din" (Fundamental beliefs of Islam). Shiah scholars also believe that such a position is only granted by Allah to whom he pleases. An Imam has all the responsibilities of a prophet except for prophethood (and in other words, the receiving of revelation).

Being chosen by Allah, Ismah (infallibility) and being the highest are the three requirements of being an Imam. There are several logical reasons as well as a great amount of ahadith that prove the concept of Imamah and prove that all Muslims should obey the Imams.

Imamah in the Quran:  

Several issues fall under this category that we will address separately:

1- The meaning of Imamah in the Quran: The meaning of Imamah is identical to that of Arabic dictionaries, meaning to lead, and consequently an Imam is one who leads and others adhere to him.

2- The verses that relate to Imamah: There are 12 verses in the Quran in which words that relate to Imamah like "Imam" or "A’immah" (plural form of Imam) are used. This word has been used for different instances therein. In eight of these verses the word Imam refers to a human being, in two it refers to a book, in one verse it refers to the "Loh Mahfuz" while in another it refers to the straight path.

Quranic proof that the imam can only be appointed by Allah (swt)

"وَ إِذِ ابْتَلىَ إِبْرَاهِمَ رَبُّهُ بِکلَمَاتٍ فَأَتَمَّهُنَّ قَالَ إِنىّ‏ جَاعِلُکَ لِلنَّاسِ إِمَامًا قَالَ وَ مِن ذُرِّیَّتىِ قَالَ لَا یَنَالُ عَهْدِى الظَّالِمِینَ" [1]   And when his Lord tested Abraham with certain words, and he fulfilled them, He said," I am making you the Imam of mankind." Said he," And from among my descendants (will there be any Imams)?" He said," My pledge does not extend to the unjust" (Only those of your offspring that are just and pious will deserve such a rank). 

"وَ   جَعَلْنَاهُمْ   أَئمَّةً   یَهْدُونَ   بِأَمْرِنَا   وَ   أَوْحَیْنَا   إِلَیْهِمْ   فِعْلَ   الْخَیرْاتِ   وَ   إِقَامَ   الصَّلَوةِ   وَ   إِیتَاءَ   الزَّکَوةِ وَ   کاَنُواْ   لَنَا   عَابِدِینَ " [2] We made them imams, guiding by our command, and we revealed to them the performance of good deeds, the maintenance of prayers, and the giving of zakat, and they used to worship us".

" وَ جَعَلْنَا مِنهْمْ أَئمَّةً یهَدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا لَمَّا صَبرَواْ وَ کَانُواْ بِایَاتِنَا یُوقِنُونَ"And amongst them we appointed imams to guide [the people] by our command, when they had been patient and had conviction in our signs". [3]    

These verses prove that the Imam should be chosen by Allah; because in all of these verses, granting this status has only been attributed to Him, and moreover, the verse of "Ebtela'" (verse 124 of surah Baqarah) has described Imamah as a holy and divine covenant, therefore he will grant it to whom he pleases. These verses also indicate that the Imam should be infallible, and that he should be the highest and most righteous of his people. Clearly no one but Allah can know about the features and virtues all possess and whom possesses more. Therefore the Imam must be chosen by Allah. The philosophy of appointing Imams is to guide and lead people to salvation.

Quranic proof that the people are in need of an Imam

Regarding the necessity of the existence of an Imam in society one must say that the same way prophets are essential for us to reach our perfection, the existence of an Imam is also necessary at all times to continue the mission the prophet has started, and that is to protect religion from potential threats as well as guiding people to the right path.

"انما انت منذر و لکل قوم هاد” (You are only a warner, and there is a guide for every people), "کونوا مع الصادقین", and the verse of Iblagh are among the verses that indicate the people’s serious need of an Imam. We will point out some of the ahadith and verses that interpret these verses:

1- " انما انت منذر و لکل قوم هاد "; You are only a warner, and there is a guide for every people. [4]  

2- " اطیعوا الله و اطیعوا الرسول و اولی الامر منکم " [5] (O you who have faith! Obey Allah and obey the Apostle and those vested with authority among you).  All Shia commentators agree that the term "ولی الامر" refers to the Imams.

3- " یا ایها الرسول بلغ ما انزل الیک من ربک... "[6] (O Apostle! Communicate that which has been sent down to you from your Lord). According to authentic ahadith narrated by Sunni scholars this verse was revealed on the occasion of Qadir Khom and on that very day the prophet, through his appointing Imam Ali (as) as successor, successfully ended his mission. Though the verse is directly related to Imam Ali, but it also indirectly states the necessity of the existence of an Imam at all times.

Verses that prove Imams are chosen only by Allah

There are many Quranic verses that prove the Imamah of Ali and his progeny. However these verses can only be used as proof when backed by the several ahadith narrated from the Prophet which explain the "Sha’n Nozul" of these verses. These ahadith are accepted by both Sunni and Shiah scholars, here we will mention some of these verses:

1- The verse of Tabliq: "O Apostle! Communicate that which has been sent down to you from your Lord, and if you do not, you will not have communicated His message, and Allah shall protect you from the people. Indeed Allah does not guide the faithless lot." [7]  

Allah strictly commands his prophet to convey his message and according to the ahadith after receiving this revelation the prophet assigned Ali as his successor in a place known as "Ghadir Khom", on that occasion the prophet said: "Whoever I was his mowla, Ali will be his mowla". [8]  

2- The verse of Wilayah: "Your guardian is only Allah, his Apostle, and the faithful who maintain the prayer and give the zakat while performing ruku’." [9]   

A vast majority of Quranic commentators and hadith narrators believe that the verse refers to Ali (as). [10]

In his book "Al-Durrul Manthur", Suyuti, one of the greatest Sunni scholars, narrates a hadith from Ibn Abbas that "Ali was doing ruku’ in prayer when a needy person approached him.  Ali (as) gave him his ring in charity, the prophet asked the poor man: Who gave you this ring? The poor man replied: The man that is bowing down in prayer. (while pointing at Ali )(as)", after this the verse was revealed. [11]

Some Sunni scholars, like Wahedi [12] and Zamakhshari [13] have narrated this hadith and verified that the verse " انما ولیکم الل ه " is referring to Ali (as).

In this regard Fakhr Razi narrates a hadith from Abdullah Ibn Salam in his commentary on the Quran . Abdollah says that when the verse was revealed to the Prophet of Allah I told the Prophet that I had seen with my own eyes Ali (as) give the poor man his ring and therefore we accept his wilayah! He also narrates a similar hadith from Abuzar that points out the Sha’n Nozul of this verse. [14]

Tabari, another Sunni scholar, mentions several ahadith about this verse and it's Sha’n Nuzul, and the majority of them state that the verse refers to Ali (as). [15]  

The Great Allamah Amini has mentioned ahadtih from about twenty authentic Sunni books in his valuable book "Al Ghadir" along with their addresses and sources that confirm this verse referring to Imam Ali (as). [16]   

In this verse the Wilayah of Allah, the prophet and Imam Ali are mentioned side by side, indicating that there is no difference between them.

3- The verse of "Ulul Amr": " O you who have faith! Obey Allah and obey the Apostle and those vested with authority among you." [17]

On one hand, Muslim scholars [18] believe that this verse refers to Ali (as).

For example, Hakem Hasakani Hanafi Neishaboori, the famous Sunni commentator mentions 5 ahadith when explaining the verse in which the title of "اولی الامر" has been identified with Ali (as). [19]  

Abuhayyan Andolosi mentions different opinions about who the "اولی الامر" are, and mentions that Maqatel, Meymoon and Kalbi (Quranic commentators) believe the verse is referring to the imams from the Prophet's household (as). [20]  

Abu Bakr Ibn Mo'men Shirazy, a Sunni scholar, points out in his treatise of "E'tiqad" that Ibn Abbas stated that the verse referred to Ali (as). [21]  

On the other hand, the verse mentions that Allah (swt), the prophet and the Ulul Amr must be obeyed, all of this with the same wording and without repeating the word “اطیعوا” in the verse, all of which indicate that the imams must infallible as well, or else it wouldn’t be right to order the people to be in total submission and obedience to them the same way that everyone must obey the prophet and Allah (swt) without question, and according to the ahadith, the only ones to be imam are the 12 imams of the Shia.

All of what was mentioned above was only to give a glimpse of the many ahadith narrated by Sunni scholars that prove the Shiah's claim.

There are also many verses that relate to the Imamah of Imam Ali. When searching Sunni books we find significant points pertaining to these verses, for more information you can refer to authentic books on this subject.

Other than these examples there are verses that directly relate to the Imamah of Imam Ali like verse 9 of surah Tobah, which is also known as the "Verse of Sadighin": [22]" یا ایها الذین امنوا اتقوا الله و کونوا مع الصادقین ", or verse 23 of surah Shora, and is also known as the "Verse of Mawaddah": [23]" قل لا اسئلکم علیه اجراً الا المودة فی القربی".   The ahadith that explain the Sha’n Nuzul of these verses are narrated in Sunni and Shiah books.

Moreover other verses in the Quran explain the great virtues and features of Ali (as) and how he surpassed all of the prophet’s companions in terms of reaching a higher status in the eyes of Allah. On the other hand common sense says to choose the better person over the one who is simply good, therefore we can conclude that Ali (as) deserved to be accepted as the prophet’s successor more than anyone else.

Last but not least is that the status of Imamah is very important in Islam and is considered the last level of one's journey to reach spiritual perfection.

Sometimes Imamah and prophethood are combined in one person, like in Prophet Abraham or the Prophet of Islam who were both Imams and Prophets of their Ummah, and in other times only one of the two can be found, like the Ahlul-Bayt who were imams.


[1] Baqarah: 124.

[2] Anbiya: 73.

[3] Sajdah: 24.

[4] Ra’d:7.

[5] Nisa: 59.

[6] Ma’idah:67.

[7]  " یا ایها الرسول بلغ ما انزل الیک من ربک... "Maidah: 67, for further information, see: The Sunnis and the verse of Tabligh.

[8] Makarem Shirazi, Payame Qurani, vol. 9; Emamat dar Quran, pg. 182 and on.

[9] « انما ولیکم الله و رسوله و الذین امنوا الذین یقیمون الصلاة... » Maidah: 55.

[10] Because according to authentic ahadith the one who gave his ring to the poor man was Ali (as).

[11] Al-Durrul Manthur, vol. 2, pg. 293.

[12] Asbabul-Nuzul, pg. 148.

[13] Tafsir of Fakhr Razi, vol. 12, pg. 26.

[14] Tafsir of Fakhr Razi, vol. 12, pg. 26.

[15] Tafsir Tabari, vol. 6, pg. 186.

[16] Al-Ghadir, vol. 2, pp. 52-53.

[17] " یا ایها الذین امنوا اطیعوا الله و اطیعوا الرسول و اولی الامر منکم"

[18] There are tens of ahadtih mentioned in Tafsir Borhan which have been narrated in Sunni hadith records. These ahadith say that the verse refers to Ali (pb) and the household of the prophet, some ahadith go further and even name each of the twelve Imams as the individuals the verse refers to. Tafsir Borhan, vol. 1, pp. 381-387.

[19] Shawahidul-Tanzil, vol. 1, pp. 148-151.

[20] Bahrul-Muhit, vol. 3, pg. 278.

[21] Ihqaqul-Haqq, vol. 3, pg. 425.

[22] "یا ایها الذین امنوا اتقوا الله و کونوا مع الصادقین" Tawbah: 119. Ahadith tell us that what is meant by the “sadeqin” are Imam Ali (as) and the prophet’s progeny. (Yanabi’ul-Mawaddah, pg.115 and Shawahidul-Tanzil, vol. 1, pg. 262).

[23] Shura: 33.


With Duas.


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Rejecting Imamah does not make you a kafir. if this was the case, paradise would be limited to twelver Shia, which is idiotic to say the least.

Imamah is a Quranic concept, as exemplified by Prophet Ibrahim (as). It is a higher spiritual state one reaches on the path to perfection. Rejecting this concept is not equal to rejecting Islam.

Don't become a Shia takfiri. 

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^I find that rejecting them is kufr per mutuwatir hadiths and Quran verses as well. However rejecting/disbelieving in Quran and hadiths is always understood to be when the matter has become clear to the person and the truth of it has come. The mustafaeen are excused. 


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4 hours ago, Patience101 said:

Are the Usul ad-Din set out in any single hadith, or are they just a category made by Ulema to inform the people of what they need to believe?



This categorization of ʼUsūl and Furūʼ of Dīn is not mentioned explicitly in Ahādīth and Muslim scholars had categorized it. The history behind this goes back to the second half of the first century but it is not clear specifically by whom and when it has been set forth.

With Duas.


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On 19/01/2016 at 7:39 AM, beardedbaker said:

Rejecting Imamah does not make you a kafir. if this was the case, paradise would be limited to twelver Shia, which is idiotic to say the least.

Imamah is a Quranic concept, as exemplified by Prophet Ibrahim (as). It is a higher spiritual state one reaches on the path to perfection. Rejecting this concept is not equal to rejecting Islam.

Don't become a Shia takfiri. 

So do we reject the 72 sect hadith, and other hadiths of similar content? What about the sayings of the scholars, especially the Qudama?

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8 hours ago, The Batman said:

So do we reject the 72 sect hadith, and other hadiths of similar content? What about the sayings of the scholars, especially the Qudama?

We certainly do. Any narration that goes against Quranic foundations is null and void. Same goes to any scholar's opinion no matter how famous or big his turban is. They are mujtahids and expressed their views, may God reward them for their efforts and their opinions are respected. However, they are not sacred or untouchables and their opinions are not beyond criticism. 

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9 hours ago, Qa'im said:

Salaam alaykum,

Technically, the discussion on what constitutes Usool ad-Deon and what doesn't is mostly a scholastic discussion, rather than one discussed by ayat or ahadith. Different scholars have argued that there are anywhere between 1 and 6 Arkan al-Iman. One popular position is that Shiism has 3 principles, which are Tawhid, wilaya, and adl Others distinguish nubuwwa and imamah as two separate pillars, and put Imamah under the category of "usool al-madhhab" rather than "usool ad-deen." Others disagree with the distinction that usool ad-deen and usool al-madhhab should be different.

What we do know from the hadiths however is that willya is one of the five pillars of Islam: wilaya, salat, zakat, swam, and hajj. This establishes that wilaya is not just aqeeda, but a responsibility and action. We have a responsibility to align ourselves with God, associate with all that is good, and disassociate with all that is evil. That association and disassociation is expressed in our heart, intellect, words, and actions. Without wilaya, the other pillars are merely acts of devotion at best, or physical exercises at worst. Willya is about recognizing the cosmological and ontological realities of the Creator, then actively seeking out all that is good and true, and abandoning and rejecting all that is evil and false. The logical conclusion of wilaya commands the absolute obedience of the Hujja, who represents God and personifies goodness, and the absolute disobedience of the Devil, who is devoted to our destruction and taking us into all things evil.

The stipulations of wilaya are expressed by Allah and His Messenger. The most basic form of wilaya is acknowledging that there is only one God, and that all praise and power is His. The most sophisticated form of wilaya is the true acknowledgment of the role of Ahl al-Bay and their true Shi`a. All Muslims are somewhere in between these two poles. Just as there are some whose salat is better than others (in frequency, in quality, in intention, in sunan, in nawafil, in recitation, etc.), some people's wilaya is better than others. The only difference is, wilaya is superior to all other pillars, because it is the key to all of the pillars. He who has a higher ma`rifa - that is to say, he understands God's characteristics best, understands the Hujja best, and fulfills his responsibilities in goodness best, and rejects evil in the best way - would therefore have a higher quality of salat, zakat, sawm, Hajj, and a`mal. While a person who recognizes the responsibility of zakat and pays it in full has fulfilled his most basic obligation, a person who supplements that payment with a full understanding of its purpose is superior in the sight of God.

The Quran and Sunna are full of verses speaking of duty. They speak of our duty towards Allah, His Messenger, and His wali. Sometimes that wail is a prophet, but sometimes he is not (Talut, the Sleepers of the Cave, al-Khidr, Dhul Qarnayn, Luqman, and yes even Ali and his family). These stipulations are very explicit in the Sunna are more general in the Quran, just as the Quran commands salat, zakat, sawm, and hajj, but they are detailed in the Sunna.

With this understanding, we can say that the general mass of Sunnis, who may be mustad`afeen (people who either have never heard of Shiism or have no ability to comprehend it) are fulfilling some level of wilaya, but no where near its fullest obligation. Allah may forgive their shortcomings, especially if they had no way of knowing, or if their heart had a place for God, the awliya, and goodness. These general masses are called `amma. They are commoners whose status as Muslims is not disputed, but they have deviated in their understanding of Islam. In that deviation, they may directly or indirectly cause harm, or be easily swayed off the path of Islam altogether. However, if a person holds hatred for Ahl al Bayt and/or their followers, then they have affectively hated God and goodness, and have become nawasib and have left the fold of Islam both inwardly and outwardly.

Now, we shouldn't freely assume who is or isn't a nasibi, because a person's sayings or action may be involuntary, forced, misunderstood, or out of ignorance. But, there are nawasib, and we should reject nasb at least in our hearts wherever we see it. As soon as we become apathetic to it, we have failed to disassociate from the forces trying to extinguish the truth and harm the Hujja.

So yes, one who rejects wilaya knowingly and outright has no share in Islam, and incurs the anger of Allah. The same is said about those who reject salat and the other pillars outright. Without wilaya, our religion is nothing. But, don't fool yourself into thinking you have attained it. Even someone as good as Abu Dharr did not attain the highest level of ma`rifa. We all have work to do.


Jazakallah for replying, brother, you have given a very impressive answer.

This is the first time I have heard of 'wilaya, salat, zakat, swam, and hajj' being mentioned as 5 pillars of Islam. It is quite interesting how these start off with wilaya, which seems to be basically the understanding of holy beings (starting with God), and move on with a'maal we do in our daily lives. This for me is a very accurate and concise summary of Islam- with the three concepts of Tawheed, Nabuwwa and Imamah being summed up in 'Wilayah' (or at least that's how I'm understanding it).
Also the problem of Imamah in the Qur'an is negligible if you just view it as an extension of wilayah. The example you have given of better wilayah being like a better salah is also very helpful.

I have read elsewhere that some scholars such as Imam Khomeini were very adamant in their view that Imamah is a part of Usul al-Madhab rather than Usul ad-Din. Is this true?


Also, the word "mustad`afeen" has been mentioned several times in this thread, could anyone elaborate on it?


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عَلِيُّ بْنُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ وَعَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ الصَّلْتِ جَمِيعاً، عَنْ حَمَّادِ بْنِ عِيسى، عَنْ حَرِيزِ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ، عَنْ زُرَارَةَ:
عَنْ أَبِي جَعْفَرٍ عليه السلام، قَالَ: «بُنِيَ الْإِسْلَامُ عَلى خَمْسَةِ أَشْيَاءَ: عَلَى الصَّلَاةِ، وَالزَّكَاةِ، وَالْحَجِّ، وَالصَّوْمِ «1»، وَالْوَلَايَةِ».
قَالَ زُرَارَةُ: فَقُلْتُ: وَأَيُ «2» شَيْءٍ مِنْ «3» ذلِكَ أَفْضَلُ؟
فَقَالَ «4»: «الْوِلَايَةُ أَفْضَلُ؛ لِأَنَّهَا مِفْتَاحُهُنَّ، وَالْوَالِي «5» هُوَ الدَّلِيلُ عَلَيْهِنَّ».
2/ 19
قُلْتُ: ثُمَّ الَّذِي يَلِي ذلِكَ فِي الْفَضْلِ؟
فَقَالَ «6»: «الصَّلَاةُ؛ إِنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وآله قَالَ: الصَّلَاةُ عَمُودُ «7» دِينِكُمْ».
قَالَ «8»: قُلْتُ: ثُمَّ الَّذِي يَلِيهَا «9» فِي الْفَضْلِ؟
قَالَ: «الزَّكَاةُ؛ لِأَنَّهُ قَرَنَهَا بِهَا، وَبَدَأَ بِالصَّلَاةِ قَبْلَهَا، وَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وآله: الزَّكَاةُ تُذْهِبُ الذُّنُوبَ «10»».
قُلْتُ: وَالَّذِي «11» يَلِيهَا «12» فِي الْفَضْلِ؟
قَالَ: «الْحَجُّ؛ قَالَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: «وَ لِلَّهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الْبَيْتِ مَنِ اسْتَطاعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلًا وَمَنْ كَفَرَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ عَنِ الْعالَمِينَ» «13»؛ وَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وآله: لَحَجَّةٌ مَقْبُولَةٌ خَيْرٌ مِنْ
عِشْرِينَ صَلَاةً نَافِلَةً، وَمَنْ طَافَ بِهذَا الْبَيْتِ طَوَافاً أَحْصى فِيهِ أُسْبُوعَهُ وَأَحْسَنَ رَكْعَتَيْهِ، غَفَرَ اللَّهُ «1» لَهُ؛ وَقَالَ فِي يَوْمِ عَرَفَةَ وَيَوْمِ الْمُزْدَلِفَةِ مَا قَالَ «2»».
قُلْتُ: فَمَا ذَا «3» يَتْبَعُهُ «4»؟ قَالَ: «الصَّوْمُ».
قُلْتُ: وَمَا بَالُ الصَّوْمِ صَارَ آخِرَ ذلِكَ أَجْمَعَ؟
قَالَ: «قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وآله: الصَّوْمُ جُنَّةٌ «5» مِنَ النَّارِ».
قَالَ: ثُمَّ قَالَ «6»: «إِنَّ أَفْضَلَ الْأَشْيَاءِ مَا إِذَا «7» فَاتَكَ لَمْ تَكُنْ «8» مِنْهُ تَوْبَةٌ دُونَ أَنْ تَرْجِعَ «9» إِلَيْهِ فَتُؤَدِّيَهُ «10» بِعَيْنِهِ، إِنَّ الصَّلَاةَ وَالزَّكَاةَ وَالْحَجَّ وَالْوِلَايَةَ لَيْسَ يَنْفَعُ «11» شَيْءٌ «12» مَكَانَهَا «13» دُونَ أَدَائِهَا، وَإِنَّ الصَّوْمَ إِذَا فَاتَكَ أَوْ قَصَّرْتَ «14»
»أَوْ سَافَرْتَ فِيهِ، أَدَّيْتَ مَكَانَهُ أَيَّاماً غَيْرَهَا «15»، وَجَزَيْتَ «16» ذلِكَ الذَّنْبَ بِصَدَقَةٍ، وَلَا قَضَاءَ عَلَيْكَ، وَلَيْسَ مِنْ تِلْكَ الْأَرْبَعَةِ شَيْءٌ يُجْزِيكَ مَكَانَهُ غَيْرُهُ».
قَالَ: ثُمَّ قَالَ «1»: «ذِرْوَةُ «2» الْأَمْرِ وَسَنَامُهُ «3» وَمِفْتَاحُهُ وَبَابُ الْأَشْيَاءِ وَرِضَا «4» الرَّحْمنِ الطَّاعَةُ لِلْإِمَامِ بَعْدَ مَعْرِفَتِهِ «5»، إِنَّ اللَّهَ- عَزَّ وَجَلَّ- يَقُولُ: «مَنْ يُطِعِ الرَّسُولَ فَقَدْ أَطاعَ اللَّهَ وَمَنْ تَوَلَّى فَما أَرْسَلْناكَ عَلَيْهِمْ حَفِيظاً» «6» أَمَا لَوْ أَنَّ رَجُلًا قَامَ لَيْلَهُ وَصَامَ نَهَارَهُ «7» وَتَصَدَّقَ بِجَمِيعِ مَالِهِ وَحَجَّ جَمِيعَ دَهْرِهِ وَلَمْ يَعْرِفْ وَلَايَةَ وَلِيِّ اللَّهِ فَيُوَالِيَهُ وَيَكُونَ «8» جَمِيعُ أَعْمَالِهِ بِدَلَالَتِهِ إِلَيْهِ «9»، مَا كَانَ لَهُ عَلَى اللَّهِ حَقٌّ فِي ثَوَابِهِ «10»، وَلَا كَانَ مِنْ أَهْلِ الْإِيمَانِ». ثُمَّ قَالَ: «أُولئِكَ الْمُحْسِنُ مِنْهُمْ يُدْخِلُهُ اللَّهُ الْجَنَّةَ بِفَضْلِ رَحْمَتِهِ «


Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [a] said, "Islam has been built upon five things: upon salat, and zakat, and the Hajj, and fasting, and walaya."

Zurara asked, "And which is the most preferred amongst those things?"

The Imam replied, "The walaya, because it is the key to the others, and the wali is the indicator to them."

Zurara asked, "After that, which is more preferred?"

The Imam replied, "Salat, for the Messenger of Allah (s) said: Salat is the pillar of your religion."

Zurara asked, "After that, what is more preferred?"

Imam replied, "Zakat; He has mentioned it thereafter and started with salat before that. And the Messenger of Allah (s) said: Zakat removes the sins."

Zurara asked, "After that, what is more preferred?"

The Imam replied, "The Hajj; Allah says, “And pilgrimage to the House is a duty unto Allah for mankind, for him who can find a way there. As for him who disbelieve, then verily, Allah is needless of the worlds” (3:97). And the Messenger of Allah (s) said: An accepted Hajj is better than twenty nafila prayers, and whoever circumambulates this House seven times and performs two units of prayer [thereafter], Allah will forgive him. And he said on the Day of `Arafa and on the Day of Muzdalifa what he said."

Zurara asked, "And what follows it?"

The Imam replied, "Fasting."

Zurara asked, "And why is fasting the last of them?"

The Imam replied, "Fasting is a protection from the Fire. The best of things are those that if you were to miss them, repentance cannot be sought until you return to them and fulfill them. Verily, no thing can replace salat, zakat, the Hajj, and walaya, but if a fast is missed or shortened, or if one travels during it, other days can be used to substitute it, and the sin [of missing a fast] will be replaced with a righteous deed without a need for atonement. The other four cannot be replaced with any thing."

Then, the Imam said, "The topmost and uppermost affair, the key and door to the things and the pleasure of the Beneficient is obedience to the Imam after recognizing him. Allah says “He who obeys the Messenger has obeyed Allah, and for he who turns away, we have not sent you as a protector” (4:80). If a man were to pray during his night, fast during his day, spend all of his wealth in righteousness, and perform Hajj every year without recognizing the walaya of the wali of Allah – through which all of his actions are performed by his indication to them – then he has no right upon Allah in his deeds, and he is not from the people of the right."


6 hours ago, Patience101 said:

Also, the word "mustad`afeen" has been mentioned several times in this thread, could anyone elaborate on it?

It refers to those who do not have the ability to recognize the wali in this case, either due to separations of time-space or a lack of an ability to comprehend wilaya. Children are absolutely exempt from the responsibilities of walaya and go to Paradise right away. Those who do not hear the message, and those who suffer from mental illness for example, will be forgiven of their responsibilities in this life, and may be tested in another way. Some definitions include [some] women as mustad`afeen as well, but that seems to be circumstantial, because women are also capable of being nawasib, while children are not. It could be that women are simply not judged with the same strict specificity as men, as men are systematizers and women are empathizers. It could also be that the hadiths were referring to women at that time, who were certainly less literate and less outgoing than men. Allah knows best. Either way, mustad`afeen account for a chunk of the population, and Allah is all-merciful.

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On 1/23/2016 at 1:02 PM, Qa'im said:

What we do know from the hadiths however is that willya is one of the five pillars of Islam: wilaya, salat, zakat, swam, and hajj.



What abt shahadah?

its shahadah 






I didnt mean to come off as rude or anything if i did im sorry 


Allahumma Salli 'Ala Muhammad Wa Aleh Muhammad 




Edited by silentrepenter_
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In the Sunni narrations, the first pillar is "shahada", while in the Shia narrations, the first pillar is "walaya".

I should clarify that some scholars differentiate between "wilaya" and "walaya". Walaya is the physical application of the love and allegiance of Ahl al-Bayt, while wilaya is the general concept of our duty towards God and His representatives.

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