Fadak In History (chapter 1)
CHAPTER ONE
On the scene of the revolution

Here it is before you. Take it as if it is prepared for you. It will dispute with you on the Day of Resurrection. What a fair judge Allah is on that day and the master is Muhammad and the appointment is the Day of Punishment, on that Day shall they perish who say false things.
Fatima (s)

Preface

She [1] stood up with no doubt about what she endeavored to prove and with no fear in her great situation. No hesitation crossed her mind, for she was very serious about what she had decided to do. No obsession of worry or confusion occurred to her. Here she was now on the top with her noble readiness and her courageous stability on her ambitious plan and her defensive way. She was between two doors with no time to hesitate. She had to choose one of them and she did. She chose the more tiring way, which was challenging for a lady to walk on, due to her physically weaker nature. For it was full of difficulties and stress and required courage, effective oratory power, and the ability to formulate the essence of the revolution into words.

Indeed it required a great skill to show the indignation and to criticize the existing conditions in a way that gives the words a meaning of life and a chance of eternality to make the words as the soldiers of the revolution and its eternal support in the history of the faith. It is the faith and the death defiance for the sake of the truth that make the weak souls great and give power to the frustrated spirits without any hesitation or feebleness.

Hence this revolutionary lady chose this way, which fitted her great soul and her determined personality towards reserving the truth and striving for its sake.

She was surrounded by her maids and fellow-women like the scattered stars gathering in disorder. They were all together with the same zeal and the same anxiety. Their leader was among them reviewing what a noble rising she would attempt to do. She was trying to prepare the equipments and the supply for that. As she went further in her review, she became more steadfast and the power of her right became stronger and stronger. She became bolder in her movement and in her rush to defend the robbed rights. She became more active in her advance and more courageous in her great situation as if she had borrowed her great husband’s heart to face her difficult circumstances and what the fate brought to her with. Rather it was what Allah had decided to try her with that terrible tragedy that could shake the great mountains.

She was, at that terrible moment when she played the role of the defensive soldier, like a ghost

under a cloud of bitter sorrow. She was pale, frowning, broken hearted, depressed, faint, weak, exhausted but in her soul and mind there was a glimpse of happiness and remnant of comfort. Neither this nor that were for enjoying a smiling hope or calmness with a sweet dream or expecting a good result. That glimpse was a glimpse of content with the thought of revolution and that comfort was confidence of success. In the instantaneous failure there might be a later great success. Exactly it was. A nation rose to sanctify this revolution and to imitate this great lady’s stability and courageousness.

Her thoughts in that situation took her to the near past, to the happy life where her father was still breathing and her house was the centre of the state and the steady pole of glory that the world obeyed and submitted to.

And perhaps her thoughts led her to remember her father hugging her, surrounding her with his sympathy and showering her his kisses, which she was accustomed to and were her sustenance every morning and evening.

Then she came to be faced with a different time. Her house that was the lantern of light, the symbol of prophethood and the shining ray soaring towards the Heaven was threatened from time to time. Her cousin, the second man in Islam, the gate of the prophet’s knowledge, [2] his loyal vizier[3] and his promising Aaron, [4] who would not separate with his pure beginning[5] from the blessed beginning of the Prophet and who was the Prophet’s supporter at the beginning and his great hope at the end, finally would lose the caliphate after the Prophet (s). His morale, which the Heaven and the earth confessed, was demolished and his great deeds became irrespective according to some criteria fabricated at that time.

Here she cried bitterly. Her crying was not of that sort that appeared on the lineaments. It was the agony of the conscience, the suffering of the soul and the tremor of the regrets in the bottom of the heart. Tears flowed from her gloomy eyes.

Her stop did not last long. She rushed like a flaming spark surrounded by her companions until she reached the struggle field. She stopped her eternal stop and declared her war, in which she used whatever she was allowed to use as a Muslim woman. Her fresh revolution was about to devour the caliphate but the circumstances were against her and the obstacles increased in front of her.

The environments of the event

That was the veracious Fatima, the daughter of the Prophet, the delight of his eye, the example of infallibility, the radiant halo and the remainder of the Prophet among the Muslims, on her way to the mosque. She lost the father, who was the best at all in the history of mankind, the most sympathetic, the most compassionate and the most blessed.

This was a calamity that could make the one, afflicted with, taste the bitterness of dying and find dying sweet and delightful hope.

Thus was Fatima when her father left to the better world and his soul flew to Paradise pleased (with Allah) and (Allah) well-pleased (with him).

The bitter events did not cease. She faced another calamity, which had a great effect on her pure soul and it moved her sorrow and grief. It was not less than the first calamity. It was the lost of the glory, which the Heaven had granted to the Prophet’s family along history. That glory was the leadership of the umma. The Heaven had decided that Muhammad’s family was to rule his umma and his Shia because they (Muhammad’s descendents) were his examples and derivatives. But the opposite account turned the leadership and the rule away from the real possessors and appointed caliphs and emirs instead. [6]

With this and that Fatima (s) lost the holiest prophet and father and the most eternal chiefdom and leadership in an overnight. So her grief-stricken soul sent her to the war and its fields and made her undertake the revolution and keep on it.

Undoubtedly, anyone else who had the same principles and beliefs could not have done what she did or striven in jihad like her without being an easy prey for the ruling authority that had reached at that time the peak of subdual and severity. There was blame for waving, accusation for saying and punishment for doing. [7] It was not different from what we nowadays might refer to as martial laws. That was necessary for the rulers in those days to support their base and to fix their structure.

But since the defending rebel was the daughter of Muhammad (s), a piece of his soul[8] and his flourishing image, she would be kept safe undoubtedly because of the holy prophethood of her father and also the respect and other aspects of woman in Islam that safeguarded her from harm.

The tools of the revolution

Fatima (s) flew by the wings of her sacred thoughts to the horizons of her past and the world of her great father, which turned, after her father joined his Lord, to a shining memory in her soul. It supplied her every moment with feelings, sympathy and education. It roused in her joy and ease. Even if she was late after her father in the account of time, she did not separate from him in the account of soul and memory.

So she had inside her an inexhaustible power, a motive for a sweeping revolution, which never went out, lights from the prophethood of Muhammad and the soul of Muhammad lighting her way and guiding her to the right path.

Fatima (s) deserted the worldly life when the revolution of her soul ripened and turned with her feelings towards the memory that still lived inside her soul to take from it a torch of light for her difficult situation. She began calling:

Come back to me O scenes of happiness, from which I woke up to find unhappiness that I cannot tolerate….

Come back to me O you the dearest and the most beloved one to me. Talk to me and shed on me some of your divine light as you used to do with me before.

Come back to me, my father. Let me converse with you if that will relieve you. Let me reveal to you my griefs as I always used to do. Let me tell you about those shades, which preserved me from the flame of this world. Now I no longer have any.

She said after the death of her father:

There were after you conflicting news and misfortunes,

If you were here, no misfortune would happen. [9]

Come back to me O memories of my dear past to tell me your attractive speech and make me hear every thing to announce my war with no leniency against those, who ascended-or the people made them ascend- the minbar and the position of my father and they did not pay any attention to the rights of the Prophet’s family or to the sanctity of the holy house to prevent it from burning[10] and from being destroyed. Remind me of my father’s scenes and battles. Did not he tell me of the kinds of heroism and jihad[11] of his brother and son-in-law (Ali), his superiority on all his opponents and his steadfastness beside the Prophet (s) in the most difficult hours and the most violent fights, from which so and so had fled and the brave desisted[12] to break into? Was it right after that to put Abu Bakr on the minbar of the Prophet and to bring down Ali from what he deserved?!

O my father’s memories, tell me about Abu Bakr. Is not he the one, whom the divine inspiration did not entrust with the announcing of a verse to the polytheists[13] and chose Ali for the task? Did that mean but that Ali was the natural representative of Islam, who was to undertake every task that the Prophet might not be free from his many duties to do himself?

I remember well that critical day where the agitators agitated when my father appointed Ali as emir of Medina and he went out for war. They put for that emirate[14] whatever interpretations they liked. But Ali was steadfast like a mountain. The riots of the rioters did not shake him. I tried to make him follow my father to tell him what people fabricated. At last he followed the Prophet. Then he came back beaming brightly and smiling broadly. Happiness carried him to his beloved spouse to bring good news to her not in the worldly meaning but in a meaning of the Heaven. Ali told how the Prophet received him, welcomed him and said to him: “You are to me as Aaron was to Moses but there will be no prophet after me.”[15] Moses’ Aaron was his partner in the rule, the imam of his umma and was prepared to be his successor. And so Muhammad’s Aaron had to be the wali of the Muslims and the caliph after Muhammad (s).

When she arrived at this point of her flowing thoughts, she cried out that this was the reversal, of which Allah had warned in His saying: (And Muhammad is no more than an apostle; the apostles have already passed away before him; if then he dies or is killed will you turn back on your heels? 3:144) Soon the people turned back on their heels and were overcome by the pre-Islamic thinking, which the two parties (the Muhajireen and the Ansar) exchanged in the Saqeefa[16] when one of them said: “We are the people of glory and strength and more in number.” The other replied: “Who will dispute with us about the rule of Muhammad while we are his assistants and family?”[17] The holy book and the Sunna failed in front of those criteria. She began to say:

O principles of Muhammad, which flowed in my veins since I was born, like the blood in the veins. Omar, who attacked you (principles) in your house in Mecca, which the Prophet had made as a centre for his mission, attacked the family of Muhammad in their house (in Medina) and set fire to it or was about to do so…[18]

O my great mother’s soul, you have taught me an eternal lesson in the life of the Islamic struggle by your great jihad beside the master of the prophets. I will make myself as another Khadeeja for Ali in his present ordeal. [19]

Here I am, my mother. I hear your voice in the depth of my soul prompting me to stand against the rulers.

I will go to Abu Bakr to say to him: “You have done a monstrous thing. Here it is before you. Take it as if it is prepared for you. It will dispute with you on the Day of Resurrection. What a fair judge Allah is on that day and the master is Muhammad and the appointment is the Day of Punishment”[20] and to draw the attention of the Muslims to the bad ends of their doing and the dark future they built with their own hands and to say to them: “It was impregnated so wait until it bears then milk its blood…then they will perish who say false things and the successors will know what bad the earlier ones have established.”[21]

Then she rushed into the field of action having in her soul the principles of Muhammad, the spirit of Khadeeja, the heroism of Ali and great pity for the umma that it might face a dark future.

The route of the revolution

The way, which the revolutionary lady took, was not long because the house, from which the spark and the flame of the revolution were emitted, was the house of Ali. It was called, according to the Prophet (s), the house of the prophethood. It was attached to the mosque. [22] Nothing separated them except one wall. So she might enter the mosque from the door, which was between them (the mosque and the house) and leading to the mosque directly or she might enter from the general gate of the mosque. It is not so important for us which way she passed, whereas I think it was the general gate of the mosque because the historical description of her revolutionary movement feels of that. Her entering from her special door did not let her walk in the mosque or to pass a way between her house and the mosque so how could the narrator describe her gait that it was exactly like the gait[23] of the Prophet? If we supposed that she had walked in the mosque itself, so her walk would not lead her to the caliph but it would begin from there because if some one came into the mosque, it would be said that he came in to those, who were in the mosque even if he walked in the mosque, while the narrator considered her coming in to the caliph after her walking. This confirmed what we thought.

The women

The narration showed that Fatima was accompanied by her maids and some of her fellow women. [24] She came with the women in order to draw the attention of people and to make them notice her passing that way with that number of women to gather in the mosque and to crowd where her destination was to be to know what she wanted to say or to do. Hence the trial would be open in front of the public in that disturbed milieu.

A phenomenon

It was mentioned that the gait of Fatima (s) was exactly the same as her father’s gait.

We have the opportunity to philosophize this accurate imitation. It might be her nature without any affectation or a special intent. It was not unlikely for she accustomed to imitating her father in sayings and doings. Or she might do that on purpose when she imitated the exact gait of her father to provoke the feelings of people and the sentiments of the public to get their minds back to the near past, to the holy reign of the Prophet and the smiling days, which they spent under the shadow of their great Prophet. By that she tried to soften their feelings and to pave the way for their hearts to accept her glaring invitation and to give some success to her desperate or semi-desperate try.

Hence you see that the narrator himself was moved by this case knowingly or unknowingly and that his affection prompted him to record accurately the gait of Fatima (s).

It was a blessed cry by Fatima that was looked after by the Heaven. It was, at its beginning, the point at which the slaughtered right was focused and the desperate try around which smiles of hope spread and then turned, after its end, to bitter gloom, rigid despair and surrender imposed by the people’s lives in those days.

Unlike the other revolutions, it was a revolution that the rebel did not want an immediate result for as much as to be recorded as a revolution by itself and to be mentioned by history in prominent lines. And it was! It expressed the intent completely with no defect. Indeed this was what happened that we think it succeeded even apparently it failed as we will explain later in one of the chapters of this book.

Footnotes:

1. Fatima (s).
2. According to the famous prophetic tradition (I am the city of knowledge and Ali is its gate). Refer to Abu Na’eem’s Hilyatul-Awliya’, vol.1, p.64, As-Sayouti’s Jami’ul-Jawami’, At-Tarmithi’s Sahih and refer to at-Taj aj-Jami’ lil-Usool fee Ahadeeth ar-Rasool of Sheikh Mansour Ali Nassif, ol.3 p.337.
3. With reference to the tradition (This-referring to Ali-is my brother, my vizier and my successor among you…). Refer to the full tradition in at-Tabari’s Tareekh, vol.3 p.218-219 and Tafseer al-Khazin, vol.3 p.371.
4. Regarding the true tradition (O Ali, are you not pleased to be for me as Aaron was to Moses, except that there is no a prophet after me). Refer to al-Bukari’s Sahih, vol.5 p.81, Muslim’s Sahih, vol.4 p.1873 and at-Taj aj-Jami’ of Sheikh Mansour Ali Nassif, vol.3 p.333.
5. Refer to Nahjul Balagha, sermon no.192 p.300-302, checked by Dr. Subhi as-Salih. Imam Ali said: (You have known my position to the Prophet in close relation and special rank. He put me in his lab when I was a child…where there was no a single house having Muslims except that house, which gathered the Prophet, Khadeeja (the Prophet’s first wife) and me. I saw the light of the angel and smelt the scent of the prophethood…)
6. The heaven had decided that Ali and the other pure members of the Prophet’s family were to have the leadership and the imamate of the umma. There was a big step of educational and intellectual preparation for such leadership and caliphate. In fact there was a clear method that its steps succeeded in this way. It was confirmed by the holy Quran and the Sunna that did not let any way of doubt. Refer to The origin of the Shiism and the Shia by Imam as-Sadr and edited by Abdul Jabbar Sharara. We proved by numbers, evidences and texts this fact with reference to the reliable sources and true traditions of our Sunni brothers.
Also refer (for example) to at-Tabari’s Tareekh vol.3 p.218-219, as-Sayooti’s Tareekh al-Khulafa’ (History of the caliphs), p.171, ibn Hajar’s as-Sawa’iq al-Muhriqa, p.127 and the Summary of Ibn Assakir’s Tareekh by ibn Mandhour, vol.17.p.356 and following pages.
7. Refer to the event of al-Saqeefa in al-Tabari’s Tareekh vol.2 p.244 and see what had happened on that day. One was the saying of the second caliph (Omar): “Kill Sa’d bin Obada…”
8. The Prophet said: “Fatima is a part of me. Whoever hurts her, surely hurts me…” Refer to at-Taj al-Jami’ lil-Ossool vol.3 p.353, al-Bukhari’s Sahih vol.5 p.83 tradition no. 232 and Muslim’s Sahih vol.4 p.p/.1902 tradition no.2493.
9. Sharh Nahjul Balagha of ibn Abul Hadeed, vol.16 p.312.
10. With reference to the threat of burning the house of Fatima (s). Refer to al-Imama wes-Siyasa by ibn Qutayba p.12, at-Tabari’s Tareekh vol.2 p.233 and Sharh Nahjul Balagha by ibn Abul Hadeed vol.6 p.47-48. They mentioned that Omar bin al-Khattab came to the house of Fatima with a group of Ansar (the people of Medina, who believed and assisted the Prophet in his mission when he and his companions emigrated from Mecca to Medina) and Muhajireen (the Prophet’s companions, who emigrated from Mecca to Medina) and said: “I swear by Him, in Whose hand my soul is, either you come out to pay homage (to Abu Bakr) or I will set fire to the house with whoever inside it”.
11. Refer to at-Tabari’s Tareekh vol.2 p.25 and65-66, when Imam Ali (s) killed Talha bin Othman the bearer of the polytheists’ banner…and killed all the bearers of the banner. The prophet (s) saw a group of polytheists. He said to Ali: “Attack them!” Ali attacked them, scattered them and killed Amr aj-Jumahi. The Prophet saw another group of polytheists. He said to Ali: “Attack them” Ali attacked them, scattered them and killed Shayba bin Malik. Gabriel said to the Prophet: “O messenger of Allah, it is this the real assistance.” The prophet said: “He is from me and I am from him”. Gabriel said: “And I am from you both…”
12. Refer to the tradition narrated by Sa’d bin Abu Waqqas mentioned in Muslim’s Sahih, vol.4 p.1873, at-Tarmithi’s Sahih vol.5 p.596 and ibn Hajar’s as-Sawa’iq al-Muhriqa. They all confirmed this meaning.
13. With reference to the story of sura of Bara’a. Refer to Imam Ahmad’s Musnad vol.1 p.3 and az-Zamakhshari’s Kashshaf vol.2 p.243. It was mentioned that: “While Abu Bakr was on his way (towards Mecca) in order to inform of the sura of Bara’a, Gabriel came down and said to the Prophet: “O Muhammad, no one is to inform of your mission but a man of your family. So you send Ali…”Also refer to at-Tarmithi’s Sahih vol.5 p.594.
14. At-Tabari’s Tareekh vol.2 p.182-183 and al-Bidayeh wen Nihayeh of ibn Katheer ad-Damaski vol.7 p.340 for more details.
15. At-Taj aj-Jami’ lil-Ossool of sheikh Mansour Ali Nassif vol.3 p.332, Muslim’s Sahih vol.4 p.1873 and an-Nassa’ei’s Khassa’iss p.48-50.
16. A big shed, in which the Muhajireen and the Ansar gathered in after the death of the Prophet (s) to decide who would be the caliph after the Prophet.
17. Refer to at-Tabari’s Tareekh vol.2 p.234 and the following pages and Sharh Nahjul Balagha by ibn Abul Hadeed vol.6 p.6-9.
18. Refer to at-Tabari’s Tareekh vol.2 p.233. He mentioned that ibn Hameed had said: “Omar bin al-Khattab came to Ali’s house and there were some men of Muhajireen inside it and said: “I swear by Allah that I will burn the house with you or you come out to pay homage…”
19. Relating to the situation of Khadeeja (the Prophet’s wife), in which Allah had glorified her when she assisted the Prophet in his ordeal with Quraysh when they considered him as liar.
20. Sharh Nahjul Balagha vol.16 p.212.
21. Sharh Nahjul Balagha vol.16 p.212.
22. As it was mentioned by Ahmad bin Hanbal in his Musnad vol.4 p.369 and ibn Katheer in his Tarekh vol.3 p.355 that some of the Prophet’s companions had doors (of their houses) opened to the mosque. The Prophet ordered to be closed except the door of Ali’s house.
23. Sharh Nahjul Balagha vol.16 p.211.
24. Sharh Nahjul Balagha vol.16 p.211.
 
Ref: Islamic Education Center

 

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