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The name of Imam Ali a.s son's.

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Why did some of Imam Ali a.s son's name derived from the name of Abu Bakar, Umar and Utsman?? These name couldnt seen in the progeny of Imam Ali a.s through his wife, Fatima Az Zahra. But these 3 name placed among the son of Imam Ali through his other wives. Doesnt that when he named his son with the first 3 khulafa rasyid means that Ali r.a himself have pleased with them (because most of history fact state that these 1st three khulafa make a lot of trouble to the prophet's progeny). 

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Names are not personal properties,we even had close and reliable sahabahs of the Imams who had names Umar , Uthman etc.

We also have names such as yazeed amongst the companions of the Imams !

So names and titles are not exclusive.

As long as the NAME does not have a low or bad meaning it is fine to keep.

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When referring to historical documents we find that after the martyrdom of Fatimah Al-Zahra, Amir al Muminin (A.S.) had three children that had the same names as the Khulafa. One of them was Abu Bakr bin Ali bin Abi Talib the son of Laila, the daughter of Masoud Thaqafi [1]. The other child was Usman, whose mother was Ummul Banin (which both of them were martyred in Karbala alongside their brother Imam Hussein (A.S.). [2] The third child was named Umar, the son of Imam Ali. [3]

There are a few points that must be noted regarding the naming of these children:

1. Basically naming your children with same names as somebody else doesn’t prove your affection for them and doesn’t mean you share the same beliefs and fiqhi and political stances, the same way not using those names doesn’t necessarily suggest any sort of friction and enmity, although undoubtedly, love and hate sometimes might play a role in this issue.

In addition, the public mindset at that time was that using those names wasn’t a significant thing and was not conceived as a sign of approval or disapproval. As a matter of fact these names would not remind anyone of the Khulafa and it was actually through the passing of time and history that the name of these three individuals were bolded, but back then these names were so common that if Ali (A.S.) or anybody else chose the name Abu Bakr for their child it wasn’t reminiscent of the First Khalifa.

One must know that the names of the three khalifas were not confined to them, but actually frequently used before and after Islam, among Arabs. This naming could not be a reason for friendship and liking. For example, the last king of Iran, named Muhammad Reza, was the most despised person in the country, but at the same time this didn’t change the fact that this name was commonly used among people. There were others among the great Sahabah (The Companions) of the Prophet (A.S.) that had the same name as the Khulafa too such as Usman bin Maznun and others so how can someone claim that these names weren’t for the remembrance of these great companions. You can check the names of the Sahaba that were named Abu Bakr, Umar and Usman in Al-Isti’aab by Ibn Abdul Birr and Asad Al-Ghabah by Ibn Athir.

Now we will take a brief look at the book <<Asad Al-Gabah Fi Maarifah Al-Sahaba>> and list those who had the name Umar.

1. Umar Al-Aslami, 2. Umar Al-Jami’I, 3. Umar bin Al-Hukm, 4. Umar bin Salim Al-Khazai’i, 5. Umar bin Siraqah, 6. Umar bin Sa’ad Al-Anmari, 7. Umar bin Sa’ad Al-Salma, 8. Umar bin Sufyan, 9. Umar bin Abi Salmah, 10. Umar bin Amir Al-Salma, 11. Umar bin Ubaidullah, 12. Umar bin Akramah, 13. Umar bin Amr Al-Laisi, 14. Umar bin Umair, 15. Umar bin Auf, 16. Umar bin Azyah, 17. Umar bin Laheq, 18. Umar bin Malik bin Uqbah, 19. Umar bin Malik Al-Ansari, 20. Umar bin Muawiyah Al-Qazeri, 21. Umar bin Yazid, 22. Umar bin Al-Yamani.

These are just the people whom Ibn Asir has mentioned in his book.

We can clearly deduce that these names have been commonly used throughout history, both before and after Islam and frequently heard in all groups and classes.

Also, there are many of the Tabi’in (The Followers) that had the name Umar, the book Mu'jam Al-Thiqat has listed nearly 60 pages of narrators that had the name Umar.

These names were very common at the time of the infallibles such as Abu Bakr bin Abdullah Sa’d Ash’ari and Abu Bakr Hadhrami who were narrators of Imam Sadiq’s (A.S.) hadith, and Usman bin Saied which was one of the four special representatives of Imam Zaman (A.S.) in the time of the minor occultation. All of these facts prove that using names like Abu Bakr, Umar and Usman would not remind anyone of anybody except the owner of the name himself. It isn't as if there was only one Ali and one Abu Bakr (Umar or Usman) and despite this scenario, Imam Ali still went ahead and named his children Abu Bakr, Umar or Usman; these names were commonly used by different people at various times.

(Of course, if naming a certain name is ever ordered by God or His Prophet it will carry with itself a sacredness, as is the case with the names of the children of Ali (A.S.) and Fatimah (S.A.) children; Hassan and Hussein (A.S.). [4])

Therefore, you will agree that the names of the other Khulafa were famous and common names before and after Islam and no one would ever remember the Khulafa when hearing them. Therefore we cannot overlook all of what has been written in history regarding the enmity Imam Ali had with the other Khulafa because of a simple similarity in name. [5]

2. The Imam, with his high wisdom and insight, would hide his pains and discontent and would take part in helping the Khulafa for the sake and interest of the newly emerged Islam, to the point where Umar stated on several occasions: «لو لا علی لهلک عمر» [6] (If it wasn’t for Ali, Umar would have certainly perished). Some have the theory that these names were used to compromise with the Khulafa, for this would reduce the friction and tension in the Muslim society, not that it was an approval and sign of truce and friendship with the mentioned individuals. In any case, if we consider the suppression and pressure imposed on Shiites at that time, we will conclude that in order to protect the Shiites the infallibles were sometimes compelled to act (taqiyah) in a different and maybe controversial, but, still, Islamically permissible way, like: naming their children with the names of the Khulafa and creating ties through marriage with the great Sahabah so that the oppressive government of the Bani Umayyah and Bani Abbas would not persecute Shiites even more by stimulating ignorant people to ravage and kill them with the excuse that they are against the three Khalifas. [7]

It is useful to note that nowhere in our historical books (that have been studied) has it been mentioned that Imam Ali directly chose these names, hence there is a possibility that these names were picked by his respected spouses or others which the Imam respected and wouldn’t argue with their decisions.

Some specific points regarding every name:

Abu Bakr:

1)    This name is not original name but agnomen and if Imam was going to name his son by the name of Abu Bakr, he would chose Abu Bakr's name not agnomen and also to choose an agnomen for a child was not completely done by father and the child would have done that according to what is going on in his life.

2)    According to some historical records, the name of that son was Abdullah (which is a popular name) and according to Abu-l-Faraj Isfahānī he got martyred while he was 25 in Karbala.


1- According to historical records, Umar ibn Khattāb was used to change the names of children and he, himself, named the son of Imam (a.s.) as Umar. In Ansāb al-Ashrāf (Genealogies of the Nobles) Ahmad Ibn Yahya al-Baladhuri wrote: "Umar ibn Khattāb named Umar ibn Ali as his name." (vol.1, p.297) and also Zahabī said: "he was born in Umar's time so he gave him his name" (Siyar Aʻlām al-Nubalāʼ, vol. 4, p. 134).

Umar also changed others' names like:

A) "Abd al-Rahmān ibn Hārith" whose original name was Ibrāhīm (alʼIsābah fi Tamyīz al-Sahābah written by ʻAsqalānī, vol. 5, p. 29).

B) "Al-Ajdaʻ Abi Masrūq ibn Abd al-Rahmān"; Umar changed his name and named him as Abd al-Rahmān. (AlʼIsābah fi Tamyīz al-Sahābah, vol. 1, p. 186, number: 425).

C) "Thaʻlabah ibn Saʻd ibn Muʻallā" whose name was changed to Muʻallā by Umar. (al-Ansāb, vol. 1, p. 250)

2- The name of "Umar" was a common name; in the book "AlʼIsābah", ibn Hajar made a list including 21 companions of the Prophet (p) whose names were Umar. (vol. 4, p. 587-597).


1. To name his son as Uthmān, was not based on Imam's enthusiasm for the third caliph, rather it was due to Imam's enthusiasm for Uthmān ibn Mazʻūn (one of the companions of the Prophet);

Al-Saqafi in his Tareek stated, from Habeerah bin Maryam who said:

"We were seated with Ali (as) when he called His son Usman and said, "O' Usman". Then He said, "I did not name him after Usman the chief of the disbelievers, verily I named him after Uthmān ibn Mazʻūn." (Maqātil al-Tālibiyyīn, vol. 1, p. 23 and Bihār al-Anwār, vol. 31, p. 307).

2. The name of "Uthmān" was also a common name; in the book "AlʼIsābah", ibn Hajar made a list including 26 companions of the Prophet (p) whose names were Uthmān. (vol. 4, p. 463-447).

More information:




[1] Mu’jam al-Thuqat, vol. 21, pg. 66.

[2] Al-Irshad, pg. 484.

[3] Mu’jam al-Thuqat, vol. 13, pg. 45.

[4] Muntahal-Amal, vol. 1, pg. 220.

[5] Tabari, Muhammad, Pasokhe Javane Shi’i, pp. 55-56.

[6] فَرَأَیْتُ أَنَّ الصَّبْرَ عَلَى هَاتَا أَحْجَى فَصَبَرْتُ وَ فِی الْعَیْنِ قَذًى وَ فِی الْحَلْقِ شَجًا أَرَى تُرَاثِی نَهْباNahjul-Balaghah (Sobhi Saleh), pg. 48, sermon 3. 

[7] Tabari, Muhammad, Pasokhe Javane Shi’i, pp. 56-57.

With Duas.


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The Names of The Infallible Imams (as)

1. Al-'Imam 'Ali (as) (Amir al-Mu'minin)

2. Al-'Imam al-Hasan (as) (Al-Mujtaba)

3. Al-'Imam al-Husayn (as) (Sayyid al-Shuhada')

4. Al-'Imam 'Ali (as) (al-Sajjad)

5. Al-'Imam Muhammad (as) (Al-Baqir)

6. Al-'Imam Ja'far (as) (Al-Sadiq)

7. Al-'Imam Musa (as) (Al-Kazim)

8. Al-'Imam 'Ali (as) (Al-Ridha’)

9. Al-'Imam Muhammad (as) (Al-Taqi)

10. Al-'Imam 'Ali (as) (Al-Naqi)

11. Al-'Imam al-Hasan (as) (Al-'Askari)

12. Al-'Imam Muhammad (as) (Al-Mahdi), al-Hujjat ibn al-Hasan).

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There were lots of Abu bakar, Umar and Uthman existed at that time. So it was common to give such names. Books of Ahlus sunnah mentions that there were 9 Abu Bakr, 22 umar and 19 Uthman. 

Like Imam Ali (a.s.) himself mentions about naming his son Uthman.  Testimony of Imam ‘Ali (as) that he named one of his sons Uthman because on the day he was born. We find in Bihar al Anwar, Volume 45 page 38: 

 إنما سميته بأسم أخي عثمان بن مظعون

Ali (a.s) said:’ I named him after my brother Uthman bin Madhoon’

This is why the name Uthman was kept by Imam ‘Ali (as) it does not prove Uthman bin Affan’s merit, not even in the slightest.

And so is the case with 2 others. 

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11 minutes ago, DigitalUmmah said:

lets say that the hadiths are true, whatever. so what? what does it prove? does it mean that they did not steal fadak?

Yup. They digested fadak and also the caliphate from the rightful successor. Their actions were detestable. Even if Imam Ali (a.s.) named his son same as those 3 usurpers, 'whats in the name?'


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5 minutes ago, Lover of Ahlulbait (ams) said:

Yup. They digested fadak and also the caliphate from the rightful successor. Their actions were detestable. Even if Imam Ali (a.s.) named his son same as those 3 usurpers, 'whats in the name?'


indeed. how weak must the non shia arguments be, that they can "prove" us wrong by (supposedly) claiming that Imam (as) named his sons after the first 3...while completely ignoring:

- the burning of the house
- the theft of fadak
- the debacle of saqifa
- the murder of companions 
- the abandonning of the funeral of the prophet pbuh


but shia are wrong and sunni are right. because names. #SunniLogic. 

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