It is an undeniable fact that in the entire history of humanity, right from the early days of Islam till date, no sect has faced and endured as many sufferings, sorrows, pains and afflictions as the adherents (Shias) of the progeny of Muhammad (s.a.w.a.). All these problems are solely due to their obsessive love for them and belief in their great position and status, which Allah – the High – has endowed upon them. As this love and adoration increased, their troubles increased. But history is witness to the fact that the moths of the flame of mastership have not backed off in facing sacrifices for worldly luxuries in the defense of the sanctum of mastership. Rather, in order to complete the proof, in a very calm and composed manner, being mindful of the feelings of the opponents, they have presented excellent arguments. This resulted in groups of Sunni scholars accepting the path of the Ahle Bait (a.s.) and proclaiming so without any fear. In this article, we shall try to analyze factors which play an important role in this guidance.
Note: With this article, we do not intend to increase the differences between the Muslims because we know that in today’s society, the most important need of the hour is conformity of hearts but we truly believe that if there is an unprejudiced discussion between the various sects of Islam and there is exchange of views and ideas, then it will definitely help the cause of conformity of hearts. If we witness the fact that there are factors and reasons for differences among the nation, which is the responsibility of all of us to pay attention to, and to clarify the matter in a correct and nice manner so that truth becomes evident as daylight, correct Islam is presented to the people and by tearing off the thick veils of prejudice and traditional thoughts and beliefs, we realize the truth. This article also makes an effort to present the thoughts of those people, who after discussions and investigations on the traditional beliefs, accepted the path of truth and by clinching to Allah’s strong rope, acted upon the will of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.)
These experiences are of those people who have penned their journey and told the world why they accepted the path of the Ahle Bait (a.s.). It is important to mention here that this article is the fruit of the efforts of the indefatigable scholar Hujjatul Islam Ali Asghar Rizwani of Qum, the Islamic Republic of Iran. Let us now start the analysis of the below mentioned reasons.
A. Recognizing the greatness of the Ahle Bait (a.s.)
History is witness to the fact that whenever the scholars of the Ahle Tasannun and their youths have tried to enquire about the rights and the recognition of the Ahle Bait (a.s.), then a majority of them have accepted their superiority and accepted the Shia faith. Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) praising and describing the Ahle Bait (a.s.) says, “O people, where are you going? Why are you turning away from the truth? The flag of truth is established and its signs are clear and evident. The lamps of guidance are shining. Then why are you going towards deviated people, while the progeny of your prophet is present among you. The Ahle Bait hold the reins of truth, are the signs of religion and the tongue of the truth.”
[Nahjul Balagha: Sermon 87]
(For more details refer to sermons 97, 187, 144 and 239)
1. Muhammad b. Ali Mutawakkil is among those people who have accepted the true religion. He writes, “Our courses are without the mention of the Ahle Bait (a.s.) while they are full of books on men and women from the east and west against whom there can be questions raised.”
[Dakhalna al-Tash’ee Sujjadan by Muhammad b. Ali Mutawakkil, pg 40]
2. Abdul Mun’im Hasan too was one of the enlightened and guided ones. He writes, “The cultural and the moral inheritance of the Ahle Bait (a.s.) is great which the nation can seek benefit from but has deprived itself from it. From the miracles of the Ahle Bait (a.s.), that thing which impacted me was their supplications and prayers, the mannerisms of nearness to Allah and the best etiquette of talking to Allah. If someone refers to the meanings of the supplications of Sahifa-e-Sajjaadiyyah, he will certainly be surprised that why the Sunni scholars have not sought benefit from such a book. Is there any reason other than prejudice for disregarding it?”
[Be Noore Faatima Ehtadaito by Abdul Mun’im Hasan, pg. 210]
It is interesting to know that the cause of the guidance of the author was the sermon of J. Fatimah Zahra (s.a.) regarding Fadak, reading which he broke into tears. Hence he named his book “Be Noore Faatima Ehtadaito” which means, “I was guided by the light of Faatima”
One of the reasons for people of other religions and sects to accept the religion of Ahle Bait (a.s.) are the oppressions on Ahle Bait (a.s.) in the protection and defense of the religion of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.)
A famous French researcher Dr. Joseph writes in his book Shia and Mindboggling Developments, “among the various natural factors that have helped this religion and left a deep impact on the people of other religions was the expression of being oppressed, which is the sacrifices which their leaders have given in the path of religion. The reason for this is that every man’s pure nature is inclined to help the oppressed.”
It would not be out of the way here to state that it is for this reason than the mourning of Imam Husain (a.s.) and the incidents of the amazing sacrifices of his children and companions and the captivity of the infallible and pure family (a.s.) have played a very important role in the in the propagation of Shia’ism. Therefore, it is the responsibility of every lover of Ahle Bait (a.s.) to spread the mourning of Imam Husain (a.s.) and not to find faults with its customs and rituals.
Ustad Saai’b Abdul Hameed writes, “The cause of my guidance was the pure personality of the lamp of guidance and the ark of salvation, Imam Husain (a.s.). It so happened that I was listening to the events of Karbala recited by Shaikh Abduz Zahraa Kaabi (a.r.) on the day of Ashura. It was the Muharram of 1402 AH. My body started shivering listening to the oppressions on Imam (a.s.). My eyes were full of tears. My existence started to call, “I am here O my Master, the son of the Messenger of Allah”. There were waves of questions in my mind….”
[Manhaj Fi al-Intimaa-e-Mazhabi by Saaib Abdul Hameed, pg. 31, 32]
Famous Sunni scholars who were affected by the sacrifice of Imam Husain (a.s.) and accepted Shia’ism and then wrote books on their change of religion are as follows:
1. Ustad Idrees Husaini Maghribi – “Indeed Husain Made Me A Shia”
2. Dr. Mohammad Tejani Tunis – “Then I Was Guided”
3. Ahmad Husain Yaqub Ordoni – “Karbala: Ath Thuraru Wal Maasaahu”
4. Allama Dr. Muhammad Hasan Shahaha, ex-professor at Al Azhar University
C. Distortion of Facts
Another reason which was a cause of many people accepting Shia’ism was that those who were fond of reading, when they met the Shias and analyzed their teachings, they realized that those things which they were told about the Shias were far from the truth. Ustad Hasan b. Farhan Maliki, one of the famous personalities of Islamic culture, has written an article “A Discussion on the conversion from Sunnism to Shiaism”
[Al Majallah: Edition 1082, dated 11/11/2000]
Therefore, we see that the enemies have raised various accusation like worshipping Ali (a.s.), Jibrail made a mistake in the revelation (delivered to The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) instead of Ali (a.s.)), the aim of Shias is the destruction of Islam etc. When the Sunni reading youth see that these are just accusation and nothing else, they become restless to find the truth and accept the Shia faith.
D. The Strong Arguments of the Shias
Muhammad Mar’i Intaaqi writes, “The best reason for the spread of Shia’ism which attracted the people towards this faith was the strong proofs which they have in order to prove their points. In order to prove their point, the Shias use intellect from the beginning till the end.”
[Why Did I Accept Shia Faith: pg 51]
These were some of the reasons why numerous great Sunni scholars accepted Shia’ism. Although there are many reasons but we limit ourselves to these. In the end, it is extremely important to note one thing. Guidance is only in Allah’s hands and He guides whoever He wishes. Therefore, every person should pray from the depth of his heart that Allah keeps us on the right path. May Allah hasten the reappearance of our master Hazrat Imam-e-Asr (a.t.f.s.) so that the religion of truth spreads all across the globe!