Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) is known as the clarifier the Book of Allah (SWT). His explanations, behavior, sayings, and as whole his life clarify the concepts of the verses of the Holy Quran. Today is the anniversary of one of the most grieving events of the history. On these days our kind Prophet was sick at bed and finally passed away. The major question is whether his valuable divine knowledge was buried with him in his mosque or not? Who is responsible for answering the people’s questions and arguments about the Holy Quran after the demise of the Prophet? Did the Prophet let his Ummah alone after him?
As we might be aware, the fundamental of religion and the origin of the Islamic rituals are mentioned in the Holy Quran. The interpretation and detailed account of the Holy Quran is with the Prophet and the early teachers of Islam. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) would convey all that was revealed to him and that which humanity would need until the Day of Judgment, to his cousin Imam Ali (PBUH), who would then convey the same to the Imams after him.
The revelations of Allah (SWT) to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) can be divided into two categories:
The first category consists of matters appropriate for the present day of the Prophet. These matters were conveyed to the people by the Prophet himself, without a mediator.
The second category consisted of matters related to after the demise of the Prophet. These were issues Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) conveyed only to Imam Ali (PBUH). Imam Ali (PBUH) would then write these two categories with his own handwriting.
And this manner continued until the time of separation of the Prophet from his Ummah and farewell of his successor with him arrived. In the final hours of Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH&HP) life, the Prophet conveyed the final critical divine teachings to Imam Ali (PBUH) in an important and exclusive session.
Umm Salamah narrates the story:
‘By Allah! Ali was the final person who communicated with Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP). One morning we visited the Prophet in his sickbed. He would repeatedly ask, “Did Ali come? Did Ali come?”
Lady Fatimah (PBUH) said, “It seems you had sent him on a task?”
A while later Ali (PBUH) returned. I understood the Prophet wanted to speak with Ali (PBUH), so I left the room with the others and sat outside the room. I was closer to the room than the rest.
The Prophet (PBUH&HP) called Ali (PBUH) close to himself and began to whisper and talk to Ali (PBUH). We could not recognize what the Prophet (PBUH&HP) was telling Ali (PBUH). The Prophet passed away after on this same day. And so the final person who conversed with the Prophet (PBUH&HP) was Ali (PBUH).’ (1)
Let us now turn to the report of Imam Ali (PBUH) about that day and that session:
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH&HP) in his final hours of sickness said, “Tell my brother come to me.”
Then he told me, “Come closer to me.”
“I went close to him. He leaned on me and began talking to me until he passed away beside me…” (2)
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) conveyed all knowledge and Islamic teachings to Imam Ali (PBUH). Imam Ali (PBUH) recorded the material in a book to be passed on to his sons as written proof.
The concerns Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) showed in his final hours to convey the treasures of divine knowledge to the true leaders of Islam and interpreters of the Holy Quran show his effort in maintaining the religion and protecting the Islamic Ummah. And with this note, the period of preaching the teachings of Islam begins in the time of the life of the Holy Prophet and the Infallible Imams are responsible for continuing this great task.
(Selection taken from “The Imam’s Role in Restoration of the Religion” by Allamah Sayyid Murtada Askari, with minor changes)
On behalf of Roshd Website we offer our condolences to all Muslims on the 28th of Safar the demise of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him and his progeny) and the martyrdom of his beloved grandson Imam Hassan ibn Ali (PBUH).
1. This Hadith is narrated in Mustdrak ala al-Sahihain, vol. 3, p. 14 about Imam Ali (PBUH) through several chains of Hdiths. Dhahabi, the Sunni scholar, has considered this Hadith as correct (Sahih) in his summarization on Mustdrak ala al-Sahihain.
2. Tabaqat Ibn Sa’ad, vol. 2, p. 263