This is one of the ‘rational objections’ advanced by the Muslim majority against Shias. They claim that if the Ghadeer announcement of Ali’s (a.s.) Mastership in Hajjat al-Wida in front of over one lakh Muslims is a reality, how is it possible that all the Muslims forgot about it just a few months later after the Prophet’s (s.a.w.a.) demise.
The Muslims took a few months to forget the successor of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) and resorted to calf-worship by submitting to an inferior person, while a superior one existed in their midst.
However, this is nothing compared to Bani Israel who took less than 40 days to forget the successor of their Prophet (Moosa (a.s.)) and resorted to calf-worship.
The Holy Quran declares:
And We appointed with Moosa a time of thirty nights and completed them with ten (more), so the appointed time of his Lord was complete forty nights, and Mooa said to his brother Haroon: Take my place among my people, and act well and do not follow the way of the mischief-makers.
– Surah Aaraaf (7): 142
When Prophet Moosa (a.s.) returned he was enraged to find his people sideline his successor and engage in calf-worship.
If sidelining of the successor and calf-worship was a reality in Bani Israel, it should come as no surprise if the Muslim nation behaves likewise.
After all the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) had predicted:
Whatever occurred in Bani Israel will happen exactly and precisely over here.
- Man laa Yahzorohu al-Faqih vol. 1, p. 203, trad. 609)
He (s.a.w.a.) also said:
Surely, Torah and the Quran were written by one Angel, on one skin, and with one pen, and all examples with tradition became equal.
- Kitab Sulaim Ibn Qays al-Hilaali (r.a.) v 2 p 599
Iblis who deviated Bani Israel in their Prophet’s (a.s.) absence, was just as cunning with the Muslims after the demise of their Prophet (s.a.w.a.) as he himself boasts to his followers:
Has there ever been a nation that I have not deviated once its Prophet passed away from their midst? This (Muslim) nation will be no different.
- Kitab Sulaim Ibn Qays al-Hilali (r.a.), p. 577, trad no 4
So Muslims should stop doubting Ghadeer only because the majority ignore it. They should instead study the Ghadeer announcement in detail and challenge their elders over its validity and embrace the real Islam and abandon calf-worship.