The commentary of the word of Allah, the High:

وَمَن يُطِعِ اللهَ وَالرَّسُولَ فَأُوْلَـئِكَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ أَنْعَمَ اللهُ عَلَيْهِم

مِّنَ النَّبِيِّينَ وَالصِّدِّيقِينَ وَالشُّهَدَاء وَالصَّالِحِينَ وَحَسُنَ

أُولَـئِكَ رَفِيقًا

And whoever obeys Allah and the Apostle, these are with those upon whom Allah has bestowed favours from among the Prophets and the truthful and the martyrs and the good, and a goodly company are they![1]

In Ghaayah al-Maraam: Al-Shaykh al-Toosi (r.a.) in Masaabeeh al-Anwaar[2] from Anas Ibn Maalek who narrates, “One day, the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) led us in the morning prayers, after which he (s.a.w.a.) turned to us with his noble face. I asked, ‘O Messenger of Allah! Can you explain for us the saying of Allah – Mighty and Majestic be He – “And whoever obeys Allah and the Apostle, these are with those upon whom Allah has bestowed favours from among the Prophets and the truthful and the martyrs and the good, and a goodly company are they!

He (s.a.w.a.) replied, “As for the Prophets, then it (refers to) me; ‘the truthful’ (refers to) my brother Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.); ‘the martyrs(implies) my uncle Hamzah and ‘the good’ (implies) my daughter Fatemah (s.a.) and her sons al-Hasan (a.s.) and al-Husain (a.s.).

Anas says, ‘Abbas (the uncle of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.)) was present then. (On hearing this), he leapt and sat in front of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) and asked, ‘Am I not from the same spring (ancestor) as you, Ali, Fatemah, al-Hasan and al-Husain (peace be on them all)?’ The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) asked, ‘Why do you say this, O uncle?’ Abbas replied, ‘Because you consider Ali, Fatemah, al-Hasan and al-Husain (peace be on them all) superior to us.’ The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) smiled and explained, ‘As for your saying, O uncle, are we not from the same spring? You are right. But, O uncle, surely Allah created me, Ali, Fatemah, al-Hasan and al-Husain (peace be on them all) before He created Adam, when there was neither the erected sky nor the spread earth nor darkness nor light nor Paradise nor Hell nor sun nor moon.’  Abbas asked, ‘How did Allah commence your creation, O Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.)?’

He (s.a.w.a.) elaborated, ‘O uncle! When Allah intended to create us, He spoke a word from which He created a light. Again, He spoke a word and created from it a soul. He mixed the light with the soul. Then, He created me, my brother Ali, Fatemah, al-Hasan and al-Husain. We were glorifying Him when there was no glorification and were praising Him when there was no praise. When Allah intended to initiate the creatures, He split my light and created from it the Throne (العرش). Thus, the Throne is from my light and my light is from the light of Allah and my light is superior to the Throne. Then, He created the light of my brother Ali Ibn Abi Taalib and created from it the angels. So, the angels are from the light of Ali and the light of Ali is from the light of Allah; hence, Ali is superior to the angels. Then, He split the light of my daughter Fatemah from which He created the heavens and the earth. My daughter Fatemah’s light is from the light of Allah – Mighty and Majestic be He – and my daughter Fatemah is superior to the heavens and the earth. Then, He split the light of my son al-Hasan and created from it the sun and the moon. Thus, the sun and the moon are from the light of my son al-Hasan and the light of my son al-Hasan is from the light of Allah. So, al-Hasan is superior to the sun and the moon. Then, He split the light of my son al-Husain and created from it the Paradise and the heavenly fairies (الحور العين). So, Paradise and the heavenly fairies are from the light of my son al-Husain and the light of my son is from the light of Allah. Thus, my son is superior to the Paradise and the heavenly fairies. Thereafter, Allah ordered the darkness to pass through the cloud of darkness. The skies covered the angels with darkness. The angels cried with glorification and praise. They cried, ‘Our God! Our Master! From the time You have created us and introduced us unto these shadows (lights), we have not seen anything evil. So, for the sake of these shadows, remove this darkness from us.’ Allah brought forth from the light of Fatemah some lamps and hung them in the middle of the Throne, due to which the skies and the earth became bright and were resplendent with its light. It is for this reason that she is called as al-Zahraa. The angels said, ‘Our God! Our Master! To whom does this brightness belong due to which the skies and the earth have become illuminated?’ Allah revealed unto them, ‘This light – which I have created from the light of My Majesty for My Ummah – is the light of Fatemah, the daughter of My beloved, the wife of My friend (who is also) the brother of my Prophet and the father of My Proofs upon My servants. I hold you as witnesses, O My angels, that I will surely make the reward of your glorifications and praises for this woman and her Shias and those who love her till the Day of Judgement.’

When Abbas heard this tradition from the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.), he stood up and kissed the forehead of Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.) and said, ‘By Allah! O Ali, you are the conclusive argument for the one who believes in Allah and the Last Day.’[3]

I say:   That the term ‘the truthful’ refers to our master Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) has been narrated copiously by the two sects – in fact, it has been recorded consecutively by us – on the authority of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) who said, ‘It refers to three people: Habeeb – the carpenter, the believer of the progeny of Yaasin; Hizqeel (Ezekiel) – the believer of the progeny of Firaon (Pharaoh) and Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.), who is the most superior of the three.” In Ghaayah al-Maraam, he (r.a.) has narrated it from sixteen chains of Sunni sources.[4] Some of these are as follows:

1)  Abdullah Ibn Ahmad Ibn Hanbal says, “Narrated unto us Muhammad from al-Hasan Ibn Abd al-Rahmaan al-Ansaari from Umar Ibn Jamee’ from Abu Lailaa from his brother Eesa Ibn Abd al-Rahmaan Ibn Abi Lailaa from his father, who cites on the authority of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.), “‘The truthful’ are three: Habeeb Ibn Moosa – the carpenter and he is the believer of the progeny of Yaasin; Hizqeel – the  believer of the progeny of Firaon and Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.) is the third and the most superior of the three.[5]

2)  The second part of the two parts of the book ‘al-Firdaus’ and it is the half of the book from the writing of Ibn Sheerwayh al-Daylami in the Chapter of the alphabet Suaad (ص) Dawood Ibn Belaal that the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) said, “‘The truthful’ are three: Habeeb Ibn Moosa – the carpenter and he is the believer of the progeny of Yaasin; Hizqeel – the  believer of the progeny of Firaon and Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.) is the third and the most superior of the three.[6]

 3) From Ibn al-Maghaazeli from both the sides with his chain of narrators terminating at Abu Lailaa from his father from the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.).[7]

4) From al-Tha’labi in his exegesis through the chains from Abd al-Rahmaan Ibn Abi Lailaa from his father, who said, “The foremost of the nations are three, who never ever disbelieved in Allah: Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.), the person mentioned in Surah Yaasin and the believer of the progeny of Firaon. These are the truthful and Ali (a.s.) is the most superior of them.”[8]

5)  Ali Ibn al-Ja’d from al-Hasan from Ibn Abbas concerning His saying, وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا بِاللهِ وَرُسُلِهِ أُوْلَئِكَ هُمُ الصِّدِّيقُونَAnd (as for) those who believe in Allah and His apostles, these it is that are the truthful[9] He said, “The truthful of this nation is Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.) and he is the greatest truthful (الصديق الاكبر), the supreme separate (الفاروق الاعظم). Then He said, ‘the witnesses in the sight of their Lord’, Ibn Abbas said, ‘These are Ali, Ja’far, Hamzah. These are the truthful and these are the witnesses of their messengers upon their nations that they (the messengers) have indeed conveyed the message. Then he said, ‘Their reward is for their verification of Prophethood and their light upon the path.’[10]

I say: From the narration of al-Tha’labi, it is apparent that that the possession of this great quality – which is the level of truthfulness – or its perfection, depends upon being foremost in belief in Allah – the High – and His Messenger (s.a.w.a.) as compared to all the people. Thus, the complete truthful person will only be our master Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) due to him being the foremost in belief vis-à-vis the belief of all the people – a fact acknowledged and accepted by all Muslims. Thus, the ultimate level of truthfulness is proved for him (a.s.) according to the consecutive traditions of both the sects. For, the sum of all the traditions narrated from both the sects – nay, only from the opponents itself – reaches to the level of consecutiveness, for sure.

Now, know that the scale of فعيلproves the binding of the source and its continuity, as testified by the continuous and uninterrupted in the instances of usage. Therefore, the word سكير is not used but for an alcoholic and the one who is always drunk, just like the word شريب is used for the one who drinks (any drink) a lot. Therefore, the term صديق is for the one who is bound by truth and is steadfast on it. Moreover, this meaning will not be fulfilled except for the one whose words are testified by his deeds and vice-versa, and the perfection of this level inevitably leads to infallibility.

When it has become clear for you what we have explained, it will also become apparent for you that the distinction of Caliphate and Imamate is only for him (a.s.) because it is essentially impossible for the one who enjoys such a high status to be under the allegiance and fealty of the one who is not truthful in his words and deeds.

Objection:  Even Abu Bakr was truthful. In fact, he was famous by this title amongst the Muslims.

Answer: The application of the title ‘the truthful’ for Abu Bakr is like the usage of the epithets ‘the caliph of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.)’ and ‘Ameerul Momineen’ for him, which was the fabrications of the people and obviously, cannot be relied upon. How can you compare a title given by the people – who don’t have any knowledge about the inner self and secrets and do this only as per their desires – with the designation given by Allah – the High – Who is the Knower of the inner selves of His servants and their secrets?!!



[1] Surah Nisaa (4): Verse 69

[2] This book is not from Shaikh al-Toosi (r.a.). In Ghaayah al-Maraam, it is written, ‘Ibn Baabwayh  in the book Misbaah al-Anwaar’; this attribute too is incorrect. Refer al-Dhareeah, vol. 21, p. 103

[3] Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 427

[4] Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 648

[5] Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 647

[6] Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 647

[7] Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 648; Manaaqeb of al-Maghaazeli, pp. 246-247

[8] Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 648 narrating from Tafseer al-Tha’labi

[9] Surah Hadeed (57): Verse 19

[10] Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 648 narrating from Manaaqeb of Ibn Shahr Aashob, vol. 3, p. 89 (Printed at Qom).