MUAWIYA’S ROLE DURING RASHIDUN CALIPHATE

INTRODUCTION

Muawiya Ibn Abu Sufyan has been a subject of debate among Muslims for about 1400 years. He is praised by some people and condemned by others. Also there are differences of opinion among Ahle Sunnah Ulema about him.

These articles are aimed at clearing the misunderstanding of people on historical issues. We have described historical facts, as contained in authentic History books/Islamic literature, Quranic verses and Ahadith.  Ahle Sunnah scholars’ opinions have been cited all through the articles.  

It is part of our belief that respect of all Sahabah is of paramount importance.  Abusing/cursing of  authentic Sahabah, as done by Ravzi, is not allowed in Islam.  At the same time it is important to know the facts about Islamic History, particularly the events during 632-80 AD, so that we remain on the right path of Islam.  If you are not aware of these facts, there is a possibility that you will form some extreme opinions about Khulafa-e-Rashideen and Ahle Bait-e-At Haar, as done by Wahhabis/Deobandis/Barelvi and their like minded groups. 

Status and ranks among Sahabah is an established fact from Quran and Sunnah, therefore, we should look for the perfect model of conduct of Sahabah and try to emulate it in our lives.  It is consensus of Ahle Sunnah Ulema that the  model of conduct of Khulafa-e-Rashideen and Ahle Bait-e-At Haar, particularly Imam Hassan and Iman Hussain (رضئ الله تعالى عنهم) are the perfect examples that can be emulated by all Muslims.  

SECTION – A

 

As we have described above, Muawiya Ibn Abu Sufyan has been a subject of debate among Muslims for about 1400 years.He is praised by some people and condemned by others. Also there are differences of opinion among Ahle Sunnah Ulema about him.

There are 2 distinct groups among Muslims in this context.  

(i) Ravzi- Those who claim love of Ahle Baite-at-haar but accuse and abuse Khulafa-e-Rashideen and Sahabah.  

(ii) MUAWIYEEN – Those  who single out Muawiya  among Sahabah and  spend their lives in his over-glorification knowing fully well that their behavior undermines the importance and sacrifices made by Khulafa-e-Rashideen and Ahle Baite At Haar ( رضئ الله تعالی عنهم اجمعين ) in the eyes of people.   

There are two sub groups of this category. 

(a) Muawiyeen Grade (1)

Salafis, Ikhwan, Deobandis, and their like minded groups claim Muawiya  was on Haq in his fight with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ). They claim that Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) should have surrendered to Muawiya  as was done by his son Imam Hassan ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ). They also claim that  Yazid was a pious Khalifa.  They add   رضئ الله تعالی عنه with Yazid’s name and claim that Imam Hussain ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) was at fault. They say Karbala was a political episode. They blame Imam Hussain ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) and claim he revolted against a just Khalifa. (Astaghfirullahal azeem).

(b) Muawiyeen Grade (2)
These Groups claim that both Muawiya and Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) were right in their fight with each other. They equate Muawiya  with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) in spite of the fact that Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) was the Khalifa-e-Rashid and Head of Islamic nation and Muawiya  was a Governor of a Province under him. There were 12 provinces of Islamic State at that time. They choose Muawiya for their over-praise, write books, conduct Seminars, Conferences, shower accolades, sing  praises and  scream slogans and emphasize Muawiya’s importance and greatness among Sahabah.  They claim Muawiya  was Khalifa-e-Rashid and Amir-ul-Momineen on par with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) and other  Khulafa-e-Rashideen.   They proudly say that they are the defenders of Muawiya . They cite references from Quran and Sunnah about the praise of Sahabah in general, and taking it as a cover,  over glorify Muawiya  in the choicest terms possible.

SECTION – B

 

DIFFERENCES OF OPINION AMONG AHLE SUNNAH ULEMA

Some people claim that Mauwiya was not interested in becoming the Caliph; rather he was only demanding Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) to punish Hadhrat Uthman’s ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ )assassins.  He was fighting for his right for avenging Hadhrat Uthman’s ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) assassination.

They quote the following reference from the book “Siyar A’alam Al-Nabula” written by Ad-Dahabi.

قال الجعفي: حدثنا يعلى بن عبيد، عن أبيه، قال: جاء أبو مسلم الخولاني وأناس إلى معاوية، وقالوا: أنت تنازع عليا أم أنت مثله ؟ فقال: لا والله، إني لاعلم أنه أفضل مني وأحق بالامر مني، ولكن ألستم تعلمون أن عثمان قتل مظلوما، وأنا ابن عمه، والطالب بدمه، فائتوه، فقولوا له، فليدفع إلي قتلة عثمان، وأسلم له فأتوا عليا، فكلموه، فلم يدفعهم إليه .

[Meaning –  Al-Ju’fi (Yahya bin Sulaiman, from his book “Siffeen”): Ya’la bin Ubaid, from his father: Abu Muslim Al-Khawlani and a group of people entered upon Mauwiya , and  asked, “Do you dispute Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ )? Are you his equal?” He (Muawiya  ) replied, “No, I am not, and I know that he is better than me and deserves this (Caliphate) more than me, but don’t you know that Uthman ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was killed unjustly, and that I am his cousin, and that I ask for his blood? So go to him (Hadhrat Ali -رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ), and tell him to bring forth the killers of Hadhrat Uthman ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ), and I will submit to him.” So, they went to Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ), and spoke to him, but he didn’t hand them (the killers)].

The above claim of people is not based on facts because they avoid writing full text of what Ad-Dahabi wrote in this context.

Ad-Dahabi wrote in the same book “Siyar A’alam Al-Nabula” after the above statement as follows:
قلت : قتل بين الفريقين نحو من ستين ألفا . وقيل : سبعون ألفا . وقتل عمار مع علي ، وتبين للناس قول رسول الله -صلى الله عليه وسلم- : تقتله الفئة الباغية

(Meaning – In my opinion about 60,000 thousand people died and Ammar Yaasir ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was killed fighting on the side of Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) and this demonstrates what the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)said : you will be killed by the rebels)!

The Hadith referred by Ad-Dahabi in his above statement is as follows.

It is in Hadith Bukhari – Ibn ‘Abbas ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) said to me and to his son Ali, “Go to Abu Sa’id ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) and listen to what he narrates.” So we went and found him in a garden looking after it.  He picked up his Rida’, wore it and sat down and started narrating till the topic of the construction of the mosque reached. He said, “We were carrying one adobe at a time while ‘Ammaar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was carrying two. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) saw him and started removing the dust from his body and said, “May Allah be Merciful to ‘Ammaar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ). He will be killed by a rebellious, aggressive group. He will be inviting them to Paradise and they will invite him to Hell-fire.” ‘Ammaar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) said, “I seek refuge with Allah from affliction.” (Bukhari)


The opinions of Ahle Sunnah scholars on this issue is provided below:
(i) Imam Abu Bakr al-Razi al-Jassas (d 992) wrote in his book “Ahkaam al-Quran: 

تقتلك الفئة الباغية وهذا خبر مقبول من طريق التواتر حتى إن معاوية لم يقدر على جحده لما قال له عبد الله بن عمر ، فقال: إنما قتله من جاء به فطرحه بين أسنتنا

(Meaning – “Ammar  ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) you will be killed by the rebellious group” This Hadith is a continuous Narration  (Hadith-e-Mutawatir) so much so that even Muawiya could not deny it when Abdullah Ibn Umar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) mentioned it to him.Muawiya replied : He was killed by those who brought him to our swords.”).

(ii) Following Hadith is reported twice in Musnad Imam Ahmed with a sound chain:

Hazm narrated : When ‘Ammar bin Yassir ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) was killed (in Siffeen), ‘Amr bin Hazm ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) came to ‘Amr bin al-‘Aas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) and said: “Ammar ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) has been killed and the Apostle of Allah ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) said: “The rebellious group will kill him”. ‘Amr bin al-‘Aas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) got up in panic and went to Muawiya . Muawiya  said: ‘What happened to you?’ He said: ‘Ammar ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) has been killed.  Muawiya  said: ‘Ammar ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) has been killed so why are you like this?’ ‘Amr bin al-‘As ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) said: ‘I heard the Apostle of Allah ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) say: “The rebellious group will kill him.” Muawiya said: “You fall in your own urine, have we killed him? He was killed by Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) and his companions who brought him and threw him between our spears” – or he said, “between our swords.”  (Musnad Ahmed 17813 )

When this news reached Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ), he said that on this logic,  then Hadhrat Ameer Hamza ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was killed by the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)because he took him to the kuffar in the battle of Uhud!

(iii) Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) said – “I do not regret anything more than the fact that I did not fight against the rebel Group (Muawiya )(Ibn Abdul Barr  in  Al-Istiab )

(iv) Imam Shafi’i said – “ I derived the rulings about Rebels from the battles of Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) with Muawiya  (Ibn Hajr Makki in Tatheer al-Janan, page 30)

(v) Imam Mohammed Ibn Ismail al-Sana’ani said – “The Hadith of Ammar Yasir ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) is a proof that rebel party is Muawiya  and those in his party;  and the Party of truth is Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and his companions and there is Ijma of ahl al-sunna on this position”. (Sharah Subul as-Salam upon bulugh al-maram of Imam Ibn Hajar Makki  V3, P 358).

(vi) Imam abd al-Rauf al-Manawi said – “It (Rebels) is the party of Muawiya  (Fath al-Qadeer) 

(vii) Imam Mohammed Shaybani the student of Imam Abu Hanifa wrote – “If Muawiya had not fought with Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) whilst He (Muawiya  )  was a Dhalim, Unjust and Rebel,  who transgressed,  then we would not have known the rulings for fighting with Rebels. (Hanafi Tabqat, al-Jawahirn al-Mudiya)

(viii) Hanafi Fiqh book ‘Al-Hidaya’ mentions under Chapter titled “Adab al-Qadhi” as follows:

“To be appointed as Judge by an unjust ruler is allowed, like from a just ruler, because Sahaba became judges under Muawiya whilst the truth was with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ).

(ix) Mulla Ali Qari al-Hanafi wrote – “Muawiya and his supporters can be called in khata, rebellion, khuruj and fasaad but to send la’nah upon them is not allowed” ( Sharah Shifa, volume 2, page 556).

There are a number of other similar references, like Imam Abu Bakr al-Jassas al Hanafi, Imam Shawkani, Imam al-Jurjani, and others. 

(x) Imam al-Manawi (1545 – 1621), known for his works on ‘Early History of Islam’ and ‘History of Sufism’ wrote in his book  Fayd al-Qadeer  with reference to Imam Abdul Qahir al-Jurjani’s (1007-1078) Aqeeda:

وقال الإمام عبد القاهر الجرجاني في كتاب الإمامة: أجمع فقهاء الحجاز والعراق من فريقي الحديث والرأي ، منهم مالك والشافعي وأبو حنيفة والأوزاعي والجمهور الأعظم من المتكلمين والمسلمين ، أن علياً مصيب في قتاله لأهل صفين كما هو مصيب في أهل الجمل ، وأن الذين قاتلوه بغاة ظالمون له ، لكن لا يكفَّرون ببغيهم

(Meaning – There is Ijma of Jurists of Hijaz (Makka and Madina) and Iraq (Kufa and Basra), amongst them Imam Malik, Imam Shafi’i, Imam Abu Hanifa, Imam Awzai and majority of theologians and Muslims that Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) was on Haq in his fight against the people of Siffeen and those who fought him were Oppressive Mutineers (Zaalim Baghis) but were not kafir for their rebellion.)

(xi) The famous Ahle Sunnah Imam al-Barzanji (1640-1703), the Chief Mufti of Madinah (buried in Jannat ul Baqi)wrote in his book “Ishrat al-Sa’a” as follows: 

It was a false pretext of Muawiya  to justify his fight with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) under the guise of revenge for the murder of Hadhrat Uthman (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) because when he completely attained the power and became ruler of the whole State, he never opened the case of the murder of Hadhrat Uthman ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) and did not arrest the murderers though he claimed earlier that the killers were still around. This  proves that all his fight was for worldly rule under the deceit of revenge for the murder.”

 

IMPORTANT EVENTS 

(i) Battle of Siffin

The battle of Siffin was fought between Khalifa Ameer ul Momineen Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Muawiya.  Hadhrat Ali’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) forces had almost won the battle, but at the decisive moments of defeat, Muawiya’s  forces took the copies of Quran in their hands and pleaded to spare their lives. The battle was stopped, but  Muawiya did not surrender. An arbitration was organized between the Caliph and the Governor.  History tells us that Khalifa’s representative was deceived by Muawiya’s representative who  unilaterally declared Muawiya as the winner of Arbitration. In view of the open deception in the arbitration, Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)rejected the outcome.   Later Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)got busy in controlling the uprisings of the Kharijites, and it is reported that Muawiya  took advantage of this situation and gradually took control of other Provinces, one by one, by force. Eventually Hadhrat Ali(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was martyred by an assassin in Kufa in 661. Who hired this killer to assassinate the Khalifa is not known, except that he was a Khariji. 

(ii) Abdication of Caliphate of Hadhrat Hassan  (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)

After Hadhrat Ali, (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was nominated as Caliph by the people. However, it is reported that Muawiya continued his military campaign and occupied most of the Islamic State. Many of the Military Generals in Caliph Amir-ul-Momineen Hadhrat Hassan’s (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)army defected to Muawiya’s side.  Some historians claim that the defections were engineered by Muawiya . 

Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) eventually negotiated a Peace Treaty with Muawiya  in order to save the lives of Muslims being killed in ongoing wars.  As per the Peace Treaty, Muawiya  was to : (a)follow the Qur’an and the Sunnah in ruling the Islamic nation, (b) allow a Parliament (shura) as regards to Caliphate after his death,  (c) refrain from public cursing and insult of Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), and (e) provide security to Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and his followers. Muawiya  accepted all conditions attached to the peace treaty. 

However, history is witness that none of the above conditions were fulfilled. Rather stories were spread that Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ الله تعالى عنه) took millions of Dirhams in exchange for abdication of rule.   Read the following historical facts.

(a) Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was brutally murdered in 50 H by a deadly poison which tore his liver into pieces.  It is reported that when he vomited, the pieces of liver came out of his throat.  He died after suffering for about 40 days in view of this poison.  According to ‘Tarikh al-Khulafa’ by Imam Jalaluddin Suyuti, he was poisoned by Ja’da bint al-Ash’ath Ibn Qais, who was lured for this purpose.

(b) Some Ahle Sunnah scholars have mentioned that the killing of Hadhrat Hassan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was a Government sponsored conspiracy.  (Ref: Tadhkara al-Khawass, Ibn al-Jawzi al-Hanafi, p 191-94;  Ibn Abd al-Barr in his ‘Seerah’; al-Shudhi;  Amir al-Sha’bi; Abu Nu’aym, etc.).

Ibn Abdul Barr wrote in al-Istiab that Hadhrat Hassan ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) was poisoned via his wife.   Muawiya  sent poison to Hassan’s ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) wife Jada and upon administering the poison, she was rewarded. Tariq Ibn Asakir records that Muawiya  prepared the deadly mixture which was administered to Hadhrat Hassan ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ). 

(c) It is reported that cursing of Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was officially sponsored and it continued for decades.

(d) Muawiya  declared his son Yazid Ibn Muawiya ( لعنة الله عليه  ) as the new ruler of Islamic nation.

(e) Ibn Katheer, in his book Al-Bidayah wan-Nihaya,stated that Muawiya  threatened Hadhrat Hussain (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) to pledge allegiance on the hands of his son Yazid bin Muawiya ( لعنة الله عليه ).

Ibn Katheer wrote in his book Al-Bidayah wan-Nihaya as follows:

In the year 56 AH Muawiyah  called on the people including those within the outlying territories to pledge allegiance to his son, Yazeed ( لعنة الله عليه  ), to be his heir to the Caliphate after him. Marwan also wanted Yazid (لعنة الله عليه) to be the Caliph so that he could run things behind the scenes. Almost all the subjects offered their allegiance, with the exception of (i) Abdur Rahman bin Abu Bakr, (ii) Abdullah bin Umar, (iii) Hadhrat Hussain bin Ali,(iv) Abdullah bin Zubair and (v) Abdullah bin Abbas (رضئ اللھ تعالی عنہم اجمعین). Because of this Muawiya came to Madina and summoned each one of the five and threatened them”

AHLE SUNNAH MAJORITY OPINION ABOUT MUAWIYA 

Majority of the Ahle Sunnah Ulema consider there is no room to praise and glorify Muawiya  because there is not even one single authentic Hadith in his praise.   

(i) Imam Ibn Rahwahy  (Hadith teacher of Imam Bukhari) wrote there is not a single Sahih Hadith in praise ofMuawiya [ لا يصح عن النبي صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم في فضل معاوية شئ ]. 

(ii) It is reported that when Imam Nasai was 87 years old, he went to Damascus, Syria and he read his book Khasais-e-Hadhrat Ali (رضئ الله تعالی عنه), which is the collection of Ahadith in praise of Hadhrat Ali (رضئ الله تعالی عنه) in Umayyad Mosque. On hearing these Ahadith, theMuawiyeen demanded him to read Ahadith in praise of Muawiya .  On this the Imam informed them that there is not a single authentic Hadith in praise of Muawiya   On hearing this from the Imam,Muawiyeen mobbed and leached him to death.  He died soon after he was brutally assaulted by the Muawiyeen mob in Umayyad Mosque.  

(iii) Jalaluddeen Suyuti wrote: “Imam al- Hakim states that he never came across a single Hadith in praise of Muawiya that was Sahih” (La’ali al-Masnu`aa fi ahadith al-Maudu`aa” Volume 1 page 424) . 

(iv)  It is recorded in famous book Jami al-Usul that many Hadith scholars have concluded that there exists not even a single Hadith in praise of Muawiya  that is Sahih. (Sharh Mishkat Vol. 4 page 716 )

(v) Ibn Hajr al-Asqalani stated in Fathul Bari :  “Imam Bukhari on the topic of Muawiya wrote a Chapter “Bab ai Dhikr Muawiya ” because no Hadith in praise of Muawiya  is proven.

(vi) Ibn Jauzi stated in the opinion of Imam Ishaq  Ibn  Rahwayh (161–238 AH – the teacher of Imam Bukhari) that no Hadith is Sahih in the praise of Muawiya and that’s why Imam Bukhari wrote a Chapter titled “Baab ai Dhikr Muawiya” rather than “Baab ai Fadail Muawiya”  (Fathul Bari Vol. 7 page 104)

(vii) Allama al ‘Aini in “Ummdat al Qari fi Sharh Sahih al Bukhari commented: “No reports in praise of Muawiya  are proven. If many are present, the reply is that no Hadith exists with a Sahih isnaad as stated by Isaac bin Rahwayh and Imam Nasai, and that’s why Imam Bukhari wrote Chapter Baab ai Dhikr Muawiya rather than bab ai Fadail Muawiya.”  (Sharh Sahih al Bukhari P 994, Volume 7 ).

(viii) Imam Shafi’i stated : The testimony of four companions will not be accepted and those four are Muawiya ,  Amr Ibn al-Aas , Mughira (Ibn Shuba)  and Ziyad (bin Abih)“.

The view of Imam Shafi’i is also attributed to him by his student Rabi in ‘Tareekh Abul Fidah’ Volume 1, Chapter ‘The Events of 45 Hijri’.  Imam Shafii’s ruling is also available in Kitab Mukhthasar fi Ahbar al Bashar Vol. 1 page 100.

(ix) Muhammad bin Ali bin Shawkani stated: “Ibn Hibban commented that all Ahadith in praise of Muawiya are fabricated”. (Fawa’id al Mujmu`a fi bay`an al-hadith al-maudu`a page 147).

(x) Allamah Ibn al-Jawzi al-Qurashi stated : “Imam al-Hakim narrated from Abul Abbas who heard from his father (Hafiz Ya’qub bin Yusuf ayah Al Asham, a companion of Ibn Rahwahy), who heard from Ishaq bin Ibrahim al-Hanzali that ‘no Hadith in praise of Muawiya is Sahih’. (al- Mawdu`at Volume 2 page 24)

(xi) Shaykh Ismail bin Muhammad in “Kashful Khafa” stated:  ‘There exist no Hadith in praise of Muawiya  that is Sahih” (Kashful Khafa Vol. 2 page 420)

(xii) Ibn Taymiyya, wrote : One party of people fabricated traditions about the merits of Muawiya and they narrated Ahadith from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in that matter, all of which are lies.” (Ibn Taymiyya – Minhaj al Sunnah, Vol 4 Page 400).

(xiii) Muhammad Tahir Siddiqui Fatni (d. 986), the famous student of Ibn Hajr Makki al-Haythami wrote – “There is not any Sahih Marfu Hadith about Muawiya’s merits. ( لا يصح مرفوعا في فضل معاوية شئ ) (Tadhkirat al-Mouduat, page 100).

 

AHADITH PRAISING MUAWIYA  REGARDED AS FABRICATED BY AHLE SUNNAH ULEMA  

Following Ahadith have been regarded as ‘unauthentic’ and ‘fabricated’ by Ahle Sunnah Ulema.

(i) Hadith – Narrated Abdullah Ibn Omar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) – the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said : Mu’awiya  will receive retribution (ajir) every time someone reads Ayat al-Kursi because he wrote it.

Shear fabrication by Ibn Jawzi in his Mawdoo’aat 2/251.Ayat al-Kursi was revealed in Madina many years before Muawiya accepted Islam.  It was written down by Zid bin Thabit (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).

(ii) Hadith – Anas bin Malik (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) narrated, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said “O’Muawiya , this is the pen given to you by your Lord”. 

Ibn al-Jawzi (Mawdoo’aat 2-50), Ad-Dahabi (Siyar 3-129) and Shawkaani (Al-Fawaid al-Majmoo’a 403) described the above Hadith as pure fabrication. 

(iii) Hadith – The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said : Those that are trustworthy are three, me, Jibreel ( علیھ السلا م ) and Muawiya .

The Hadith is a fabrication as described by Nasa’i, Ibn Hibban in Al-Majrooheen 1/160, Ibn Adi in Al-Kamil 1/315, Al-Khateeb Al-Baghdadi in Tareekh Baghdad 8/12, Ibn Jawzi in Mawdoo’aat 2/253, Ad-Dhahabi in Al-Siyar and Mizan Al-I’itidal 3/130, Ibn Katheer in Al-Bidaya 8/123, and Ibn Hajar in Al-Lisan 1/568.

(iv) Hadith – Narrated by Jabir bin Abdullah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), Ali bin Abi Talib (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ), and Ibn Abbas (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) that Jibreel ( علیھ السلا م ) came to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and told him to let Mu’awiya  write because he is trustworthy. 

A fabrication according to Ibn Jawzi in his Mawdoo’aat 2/252+254, and weak as declared by Ibn Adi in Al-Kamil 2/99; Ad-Dhahabi in Al-Mizan 3/630; Al-Zayla’ee in Takhreej Al-Kashaf 1/445;  Ibn Katheer in Al-Bidaya 8/123; Al-Haythami in Majma’a Al-Zawa’id 9/360; Al-Suyuti in Al-La’ali’I Al-Manoo’a 1/419; and Al-Shawkaani in Al-Fawai’d # 404.

(v) Hadith – Narrated by Anas (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Abu Huraira (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) –  The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)gave Mu’awiya  an arrow and said to him, “Take this arrow until we meet in heaven.”

Weak and fabricated by Ibn Jawzi in Al-Mawdoo’at 2/258; Ibn Adi in Al-Kamil 8/375; Ad-Dhahabi in Al-Siyar and Al-Mizan 3/130- 3/332; Ibn Hajar in Al-Lisan 6/297 + 8/377; Al-Shawkaani in Al-Fawa’id  405; and Al-Ma’alami in Al-Anwar Al-Kashifa  209.

(vi) Hadith –  Ummul Momineen Aisha (رضئ الله تعالی عنها) narrated that Hind bint ‘Utba came and said, “O Allah’s Apostle ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) (Before I embraced Islam) there was no family on the surface of the earth I wished to see in degradation more than I did your family, but today there is no family on the surface of the earth I wish to see honored more than I do yours.”  The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said, “I thought similarly, by Him in whose Hand my soul is!”. (Bukhari)

CORRECT UNDERSTANDING OF THE ABOVE HADITH

Read the following facts:

(1) It is in Quran – فَبِمَا رَحْمَةٍ مِّنَ اللَّهِ لِنتَ لَهُمْ  [By the Grace of Allah you (O’Prophet – صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) are gentle to people.]  (Aale Imran – 159).

(2) It is in Hadith – The Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) said,  I am sent as Mercy (Muslim)

(3) Most of the prisoners of war of the battle of Badr,  were the bitterest enemies of the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ). However, they were provided with best of treatment as commanded by the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ).  

(4) When  Prophet Mohammad ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) went to Ta’if to invite its people to Islam they met him with denial and ridicule and encouraged street goons to throw stones at him until his feet bled. Even under such circumstances, when Hadhrat Jibreel sought his permission to destroy the town, the Prophet  ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم )refused saying. “I am sent as a mercy and not as a punishment“.

(5) During the battle of Uhad, even though the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) was wounded, he  prayed for his enemies to realize the truth and enter Islam.  Similarly, after Makka was conquered, the  Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم )declared, “today is the day of mercy, all of you are free”.

In view of the above facts, it is difficult to comprehend that the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم )   would have wished Abu Sufyan familiy  to be degraded more than any family in the world when they did not accept Islam. It is most likely that he prayed for them to join Islamic fold as is evident in the above Ahadith and Quranic verses.   

Therefore, the correct understanding of the above Hadith is, when the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) said “I thought similarly”, it means that – “I also thought that  you would have wished bad about my family before coming to Islam and once you were Muslim, you wished that the my family is honored in this world”.   

There were important Sahabah alive at that time like Hadhrat Abu Bakr, Umar, Ali, Uthman and others ( رضئ الله تعالی عنهم اجمعين )  whose families were more honorable andhad precedence over the family of Abu Sufyan ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ).  Therefore, it is more unlikely that the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) wished  Abu Sufyan’s ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) family to be most honored than anyone else in the world.

It is important that we learn Islam in the company of a true Shaikh of Ihsan so that we do not get misled by Salafis, Deobandis and Muawiyeens. 

(vii) Hadith – Narrated Ibn Abi Mulaika: Somebody said to Ibn ‘Abbas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ), “Can you speak to the Chief of the believers Muawiya  , as he does not pray except one Rak’a as Witr?” Ibn ‘Abbas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه) replied, “He is a faqih. (Bukhari – Vol  5, Book 57,  # 109)

There is another version of the above Hadith in Bukhari (# 108), in  which Ibn Abbas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) said “Leave him (Muawiya ), for he was in the company of Allah’s Apostle.”

Similarly, in Tahawi, there are two versions of the Witr incident like  in Bukhari (above).  In one version Ibn Abbas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) says “where has the donkey taken that from”.  In another version Ibn Abbas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) says “He is correct”.  

Imam al-Tahawi in his concluding remarks about the narrative ( أثر ) of Ibn Abbas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) says: “The comment of Ibn Abbas ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) that Muawiya  is correct about one raka witr is based on fear;  and what he meant by ‘correct’ was in some other matter because he lived in his times.”

In another narration, Hadhrat Abdulla bin Umar ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) said – “I do not regret anything more than the fact that I did not fight against the rebel Group (Muawiya ) (Ibn Abdul Barr  in  Al-Istiab )

There is a Hadith in Musnad Ahmed  – Abdullah bin Buraida said: ‘I entered on Muawiya with my father, then he (Mu’awiya) made us sit on a mattress then he brought food to us and we ate, then he brought drink to us, Muawiya drank and then he offered that to my father, thus (my father) said: ‘I never drank it since the messenger of Allah made it Haram’….” (Ahmad, Vol 5, Page 347, Hadith # 22991)

[References – Abi Bakar al-Hathami  recorded this Hadith Majma al Zawaid, Vol 5, page 554, Hadith # 8022 and stated رواه أحمد ورجاله رجال الصحيح (Ahmad narrated it and the narrators are Sahih). A Salafi scholar Shaikh Muqbil al-Wadi’e also decalred it ‘Hasan’ (Musnad al-Sahih, page 185)]. 

Shah Abdulaziz, Muhadith-e-Dehalwi recorded the following in his book Tuhfa Ithna Ashariya. 

Abada bin Samit was in Syria when he saw Muawiya’s convoy comprised of a queue of camels having alcohol on their back. Abada asked: “What are these?”. People answered: “These are alcohol that Muawiya has sent for the purpose of selling”.  Abada came with a knife and he cut the ropes on the camels till all the alcohol spilled out”[Tuhfa Ithna Ashriya (Persian) Page 638]

[References – The above incident is also available in Tarikh Ibn Asakir, Volume 26 page 197 and in Siyar Alam al Nubla, Vol 2, page 10.   Salafis have removed the name Muawiya ) from the new edition of these books and replaced it with word “Fulan” (such and such).  But the statement remained even in the new editions saying that ‘alcohol belonged to the ruler of Syria was spilled’.  It is a known fact that the ruler of Syria at that time was Muawiya  only.]

 

(viii) Hadith – Narrated Abdur Rahman bin Abi Umaira: The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) made a supplication for Muawiya – ‘O Allah! make Muawiya guiding, and the one who guides, and from him, let the people guided’. ( Sunan Tirmidhi).    

There is  another Hadith in Tirmidhi related to the same Dua. This Hadith is also mentioned in Tariq al-Kabir by Bukhari and in Musnad Ahmad.  

Many Hadith scholars, including Imam Tirmidhi, have commented that the isnaad of the Hadith are defective. Some of these observations are provided below.

(a) Imam Tirmidhi’s categorization of Ahadith in his Sunan are as follows:  

  1. a) Hasan Sahih
    b) Sahih Hasan
    c) Sahih
    d) Sahih Gharib
    e) Gharib Sahih
    f)  Hasan Gharib
    g) Gharib  

Imam Tirmidhi has placed the above Hadith  in “Hasan Gharib” category, which is the lowest grade.  When the Imam declares a Hadith as Hasan Gharib, he means that its chain is not authentic. 

When we compare the above  categorization along with the opinions of other Hadith scholars, this narration looks to be deeply clouded into unauthenticity.   

(b) Imam Hafiz Ibn Abdul Barr stated that the narrator of this Hadith ‘Ibn Abi Umaira’ is not a Sahabi but he is reporting directly from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم).  This makes the Hadith doubtful as its Isnaad are defective.  ( لا تصح صحبته ولا يثبت إسناد حديثه   )

(c) Imam Ibn Hajar Asqalani stated that: إسناده ليس بصحيح  the chain of this Hadith is defective (not sahih).

(d) Mulla Ali Qari  not only criticized the chain  but also stated the following:

الظاهر المتبادر من الإطلاق أنه معاوية بن أبي سفيان ، وإلا فمعاوية بن الحكم ، ومعاوية بن جاهمة أيضا من الصحابة 

(Meaning – The Hadith only says Muawiya  and it is not clear which Muawiya is meant.  Is itMuawiya Ibn Hakam (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) or Muawiya Ibn Jahima (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) orMuawiya Ibn Abi Sufyan  ?

 (e) Maulvi Abdul Haqq Muhaddith e Dehlavi in “Sharh Mishkat” – Vol 4 page 716 (published in 1873) after citing both Guidance Ahadith of Tirmidhi in praise of Muawiya commented: “Abul Hasan Quinani in “Thunziyaa as-Shari’a al-Murfoo’a”,  Volume 2, Chapter 8 page 7 stated : “Imam al-Hakim cites from a chain used by Sibt Ibn Jauzi who cites Isaan bin Ruhiyaa that ‘there exists nothing in praise of Muawiya that is Sahih”.

BRIEF HISTORY – It is reported that Muawiya  continued to live in Makka along with his family after they were defeated and lost power in Makka. It is reported in Ahadith that Abu Sufyan’s ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه ) family members were dejected as people in Makka  neither looked upon them with respect nor showed any interest to associate or even sit  in their company.  In such a scenario, it is not known if Muawiya  had the opportunity to travel to Madina and sit in the Company of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and Khulafa e Rashideen. Makka was conquered by Muslims on 20th Ramadhan 630. Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) died on 12 Rabi al-Awwal, 632.  Meaning,  the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)lived for one year and 5 months after the fall of Makka. Even during this short period, there are sketchy references that do not confirm that Muawiya  came to Madina.

Some people claim that Muawiya  worked for a few months in the company of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) as  “Kaatib” (writer/clerk).  Salafis, Deobandis, Muawiyeen and like minded groups boost that Muawiya was Prophet’s (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)Secretary responsible for writing Quranic revelations. This looks a lie and misrepresentation of facts because most of the Quran was already revealed and recorded before Muawiya embraced Islam and met Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in Madina a few months before his death.  

People’s presumption that Mauwiya may have been used by the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) for writing something  is based on a Hadith in Muslim ( Book 31, Hadith 6095) in which Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)requested Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) for three things, one of which was to use Muawiya  as Kaatib.  This meeting is claimed to have taken place in 631, a few months before the death of the Prophet  (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم).

(ix) Hadith in Muslim 

حدثني عباس بن عبد العظيم العنبري وأحمد بن جعفر المعقري قالا حدثنا النضر وهو ابن محمد اليمامي حدثنا عكرمة حدثنا أبو زميل حدثني ابن عباس قال كان المسلمون لا ينظرون إلى أبي سفيان ولا يقاعدونه فقال للنبي صلى الله عليه وسلم يا نبي الله ثلاث أعطنيهن قال نعم ‘ قال عندي أحسن العرب وأجمله أم حبيبة بنت أبي سفيان أزوجكها قال نعم ‘  قال ومعاوية تجعله كاتبا بين يديك قال نعم قال وتؤمرني حتى أقاتل الكفار كما كنت أقاتل المسلمين قال نعم   قال أبو زميل ولولا أنه طلب ذلك من النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ما أعطاه ذلك لأنه لم يكن يسأل شيئا إلا قال نعم

Ibn Abbas (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) reported that the Muslims neither looked to Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) (with respect) nor did they sit in his company; he (Abu Sufyan -رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ)  said to Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم):(O’) Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), confer upon me three things. He (the Prophet – صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)  replied in the affirmative.

He (Abu Sufyan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) (further) said:  قال عندي أحسن العرب وأجمله أم حبيبة بنت أبي سفيان أزوجكها ( I have with me the most beautiful and the best woman in Arabia, Umm Habiba, the daughter of Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ); marry her, whereupon he (the Prophet – صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: Yes.

And he (Abu Sufyan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) again said: Accept Mu’awiya to serve as your scribe (Clerk). He (the Prophet – صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: Yes.

He (Abu Sufyan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) again said: Make me the commander (in the Muslim army) so that I should fight against the unbelievers as I fought against the Muslims. He(the Prophet – – صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: ‘Yes’.

Abu Zumnail (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) said: If he (Abu Sufyan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) had not asked for these three things from Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), he would have never conferred them upon him, for it was (his habit) to accede to everybody’s (earnest) request. (Muslim, Book 31, Hadhith # 6095)

READ THE FOLLOWING FACTS  

It is obvious that the time of the meeting of Abu Sufyan(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) with the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)  and requesting for three things could be any day during 631 as Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) embraced Islam in Ramadhan 630 and remained in Makka.  After the fall of Makka, Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) was upset because he did not enjoy the respect of people of Makka, as he used to as their King, when he ruled Makka. 

It is described in the Hadith that, Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) offered to marry his daughter Umm Habiba (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) to Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in this meeting.  Read the wordings of this Hadith.

قال عندي أحسن العرب وأجمله أم حبيبة بنت أبي سفيان أزوجكها  [Abu Sufyan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ said – I have with me the most beautiful and the best woman in Arabia, Umm Habiba, the daughter of Abu Sufyan – رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ; marry her. ]

Watch the wordings – Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) is saying “I have with me the most beautiful and best woman in Arabia, my daughter, O’Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), marry her.”  

THE STATEMENT DOEST NOT SEEM TO BE BASED ON FACTS because Umme Habiba (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) was already married to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in 623 (8 years earlier) and was already living with the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in Madina.  And Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) had already met with her in Madina in 629 when she prevented him from sitting on the Prophet’s (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)Mattress declaring him as an unclean Pagan.

BRIEF HISTORY –  Ummul Momineen Umm Habiba (Ramla bint Abu Sufyan) (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) was not the daughter of Hind bin Utbah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا), the mother of Muawiya.  She was the daughter of Safiyyah bint Abi al-‘As, another wife of Abu Sufyan (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ).Safiyyah bint Abi al-‘As was the daughter of Abu al-‘As ibn Umayyah. And Hind bin Utbah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) was the daughter of Utbah ibn Rabi’ah.   Meaning, Ummul Momineen Umm Habiba (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) and Muawiya  were born to different mothers.

Ummul Momineen Umm Habiba  (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا)embraced Islam in 614 AD and Makka fell in 630 AH. Meaning, she became Muslim 16 years before the fall of Makka.   It is not known if her mother had also accepted Islam along with her.

Ummul Momineen Umm Habiba (Ramla bint Abu Sufyan)(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) and her first husband Ubaidullah Ibn Jahash embraced Islam in 614 AD. She migrated to Abissiniya along with her first husband in 616 (7 BH) to avoid persecution by Makkan Pagans led by her father. In Abissiniya, her husband embraced Christianity and she had to divorce him. She was left helpless, all alone in a far off country.  When the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) knew about her plight, he wrote a letter to Al-Najjashi, the ruler of Abissiniya, and proposed to marry Ummul Momineen Umm Habiba (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا). She got married to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in a simple ceremony in Abissiniya in 623 (1 H). Ummul Momineen Umm Habiba(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) joined Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) in Madina 5 years later, traveling by boat from Abissiniya in early 629. 

Apparently the narration of the Hadith is not based on historical facts. In view of this, the claim that Muawiya may have worked as Katib (clerk) for the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم), also gets clouded in uncertainty. 

On the basis of these facts, an absolute majority of Ahle Sunnah Ulema say that not even a single Hadith in Muawiya’s  praise is authentic.

Be that as it may, we will prefer to leave this issue for our Hadith scholars for their wise counsel.

Some scholars did mention that Muawiya  worked as Katib (clerk) for Prophet Mohammad ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) during his brief stay in Madina.  Dhahabi wrote in Siarul a’lam al-Nabula (vol 3, page 321) that Muawiya  used to write down some letters for Prophet Mohammad ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) for the dealings with people. Similar opinions were given by Ibn Hajr in his commentary of Sahih Bukhari and others.  

(x) Hadith – Abu Darda ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه )  said: I have not seen anyone who prayed like Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم )  after the Prophet’s (death) other than Muawiyah. (Al-Haythami)

The prayers and Islamic living of Khulafa-e-Rashideen; Abu Bakr, Umar, Othman and Ali ( رضئ الله تعالی عنهم اجمعين ) is exceptional and their high rank among Sahaba is an accepted fact among Muslims.  No one can emulate the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) in prayers better than them.  They enjoy highest rank among Sahabah in all aspects, including their prayers. This is the Iman of every Muslim from the time of Prophet Mohammad ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) till today.

Ibn Taymiyya, famous Salafi scholar, wrote : “One party of people fabricated traditions about the merits of Muawiya  and they narrated Ahadith from the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) in that matter and attributed it to many Sahabah as their narrators; all of these are lies” (Ibn Taymiyya – Minhaj al Sunnah, Vol 4, page 400). 

  

 A HADITH NOT IN PRAISE OF  MUAWIYA 

 

Whether Muawiya  worked as Kaatib (writer) for the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) or not, is a subject of debate between our Ulema.  But one thing looks certain. He did see the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and may have spent sometime in Madina. 

(i) PROPHET MOHAMMAD ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) CURSED MUAWIYA 

It  is reported in Sahih Muslim, (Chapter – People who were cursed by Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) that once the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) called Muawiya , but he did not respond to Prophet’s (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) call as he was eating, and continued to enjoy his food. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) called him again, but he ignored the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) and continued eating. On this, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) showed displeasure and cursed him. 

Ibn Abbas (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) reported: I was playing with children that Allah’s Apostle (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) happened to pass by (us). I hid myself behind the door. He (the Prophet – صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) came and patted my shoulders and said: Go and call Mu’awiya. I returned and said: He is busy in taking food. He again asked me to go and call Mu’awiya to him. I went (and came back) and said that he was busy in taking food, whereupon he said: May Allah not fill his belly! 

References – (1) Muslim, Chapter 23 – titled “people who were cursed by Prophet Mohammad صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم , Hadith # 6298. (2)  Ahmed (3) Baihaqi (4) Hakim

Muawiya was 30 years old when this incident happened. 

Imam Nasai  said – When he was in Damascus, people asked him to write about the virtues of  “Mu’awiya. He replied, what should I write about him? I know his only virtue is   Rasulullah ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) cursed him – May Allah never satiate his stomach. (Tarikh Ibn Khalikaan, V 1, P 35; Tadhkiratul Huffaz, 2/194).   

Ibn kathir stated : when Muawiya  became Governor of Syria, he used to eat seven times a day. The bowl which was brought to him for eating was full of meat and onions. He would eat from the bowl seven times a day along with a lot of sweets and fruits. Despite this he would still say: “By God! my belly is not full, but I am tired and food is a form of blessing with which all Kings are interested.” (Al-Bidayah wa al-Nihayah, Volume 8 page 138)

Ibn Kathir also wrote: 

وقال مغيرة عن الشعبي: أول من خطب جالسا معاوية حين كثر شحمه وعظم بطنه .وكذا روى عن مغيرة عن إبراهيم أنه قال: أول من خطب جالسا يوم الجمعة معاوية .وقال أبو المليح عن ميمون: أول من جلس على المنبر معاوية واستأذن الناس في الجلوس

And Mughira reported from Sh’ubi: “Muawiya  was the first person who started giving sermon while sitting. And this happened at that time when Muawiya acquired thick layers of fat and his stomach grew large. Mughira also reported Ibrahim: “The first individual that delivered the Friday sermon whilst seated was Muawiya “. And Abu Malih also reported the same from Memoon that Muawiya  was the first who sat on the Minbar (Al-Bidayah wa al-Nihayah, Volume 8 page 119)

(ii) The above is not an isolated incident that happened during Muawiya’s short stay in Madina before Prophet’s (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) death. It is reported that there are many authentic Ahadith in which the Prophet(صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) showed displeasure about Muawiya

(ii) MUAWIYA’S REBELLION WAS PROPHECIED BY RASULULLAH   ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) 
 
(a) Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) prophecied Muawiya  and his followers as‘Rebels who will invite people to Hell”.(Ammar bin Yassir Hadith in Bukhari, Muslim, and Ahmad).  

(b) Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) was well aware that Muawiya  will impose himself as Caliph on Muslims by deposing the rightly guided Caliphs. 

(i) It is in Hadith – The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) commanded, “the one who disputes with the (rightly guided) Caliph and imposes his authority by force over the  authority of a (rightly guided) Caliph  should be beheaded (killed)”. (Sahih Muslim, Book 20, # 4546)

(ii) It is in Hadith – Abu Huraira (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) narrated; the Apostle of Allah (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: Whoever obeys me, obeys Allah; and whoever disobeys me, disobeys Allah. And whoever obeys the Amir I appoint, obeys me,  whoever disobeys him, disobeys me. (Bukhari, Book 89, Hadith # 251) 

(iii) It is in Hadith – Narrated Abu Hurairah ( رضئ الله تعالی عنه  ) I heard the truthful and trusted by Allah (ie., the Prophet –  صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم  ) saying, “The destruction of my followers will be through the hands of young men from Quraish.  [Bukhari, Kitab al-Fitan, Hadith # 7058].   

(c) The Prophet ( صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) cursed Muawiya  on another occasion.

It is in Hadith –   ابن فضيل حدثنا يزيد بن أبي زياد عن سليمان بن عمرو بن الأحوص عن ابي برزة كنا مع النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم فسمع صوت غناء فقال انظروا ما هذا فصعدت فنظرت فإذا معاوية وعمرو بن العاص يتغنيان فجئت فأخبرته فقال اللهم أركسهما في الفتنة ركسا ودعهما في النار   (Abi Burza said: ‘We were with the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم)then he heard someone singing (objectionable songs), so the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said:  ‘Go and see what is going on there’. Thus, I climbed and looked, I saw Muawiya and Amr bin al-Aas singing, then I returned and told (the Prophet – صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم). He (the Prophet -صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: ‘May Allah throw them in fitna and push them towards hell’.) [ (1)Mizan al-I’tidal, Vol 3 Page 311;  (2) Siyar alam al Nubla, Vol 3,  Page 132 ]

(d) Imam Shafi’i stated : The testimony of four companions will not be accepted and those four are Muawiya  Amr Ibn al-Aas, Mughira (Ibn Shuba)  and Ziyad (bin Abih) “.

The view of Imam Shafi’i is also attributed to him by his student Rabi in ‘Tareekh Abul Fidah’ Volume 1, Chapter ‘The Events of 45 Hijri’.  Imam Shafii’s ruling is also available in Kitab Mukhthasar fi Ahbar al Bashar Vol. 1 page 100.

(e) Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) prayed Allah to punish Muawiya  and his followers. 

It is in Hadith – Abdur Rahman Ibn Mughfal said ; “I prayed with Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) dawn prayer, then Hadhrat Ali ( رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ ) performed Qunoot and said : O’Allah, punish Muawiya and his followers …. (Part of the Hadith) (Ibn Abi Shaiba, Vol 2, P 108, # 7050;  Kanzul Ummal, Vol 8, P 134, # 219809) 

(iii) There is a Hadith reported by Imam Ahmad. 

عن معاوية عن يونس بن سيف عن الحارث بن زياد عن أبي رهم عن العرباض بن سارية – رضي الله عنه – قال سمعت رسول الله – صلى الله عليه وسلم – وهو يدعونا إلى السحور في شهر رمضان : ( هلموا إلى الغذاء المبارك ) ، ثم سمعته يقول : اللهم علم معاوية الكتاب والحساب وقه العذاب [Meaning – Al-Aarbadh bin Sariyah narrated – The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said : O’ Allah! teach Muawiya the Book and Math, and protect him from the Azab]. (Ahmad).

There are three things in the Hadith in a sequence; “the book” (  الكتاب  ) meaning, Quran and  “Azab” (  العذاب  ) meaning Azab al Akhira.

What is the meaning of “Math” (  الحساب  ) in the above Hadith? Read the following facts. 

(a) The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) prayed Allah (سبحانہ و تعا لی) to teach him Quran and also prayed for his protection from Azab? This kind of combination of prayer was not done for any individual Sahabi in a single Dua. 

Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) taught Quran to all Sahabah, including Khulafa-e-Rashideen and they learned it well in his company. The status of Khulafa e Rashideen and other senior Sahabah is bigger than Muawiya  because he  accepted Islam after the conquest of Makka by Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم).  Ahmed Ridha Khan, the Grand Shaikh of Barelwi Order,wrote that the status of Muawiya  among Sahaba is thousands and thousands of stages below than the Khulafa e Rashideen.  He is not treated as rightly guided as compared to Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and other Khulafa. 

(b) There seems a connection between the Hadith and the views of our Ulema? An absolute majority of Ahle Sunnah Ulema say that Muawiya  was an unjust rebel and his mistakes were deliberate. However, some Ahle Sunnah Ulema say that  Muawiya’s  mistakes were Ijtehadi. We respect both these opinions. One thing is certain that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) knew that Muawiya’s calculations (علم الحساب) in occupying the Caliphate by force were wrong. In another Hadith ( Sahih Bukhari – Ammar Yaasir Hadith) the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) declared Muawiya  and his followers as‘rebels who invite people to Hell’. This may have been the reason that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) prayed Allah (سبحانہ و تعا لی) to teach him Maths (علم الحساب) as well as Quran ( علمالكتاب) and also prayed Allah (سبحانہ و تعا لی) to forgive him from Azab al Akhira.

Our above understanding is based on the following facts   

(a) It is reported by Abdullah, son of Ahmad Ibn Hanbal as follows: “I asked my father about  Hadhrat Ali (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) and Muawiya .  He (Ahmad Ibn Hanbal) answered: “Know that Hadhrat Ali(رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) had a lot of enemies who tried hard to find a fault in him, but they found it not. As such, they joined a man, (Muawiya ) who verily fought him, battled him, and they praised him (Muawiyah ) extravagantly setting a trap for themselves for him[References – (i) History of Caliphs by Jalaluddin Suyuti page 202, (ii) Al-Sawa’iq al-Muhriqah, by Ibn Hajar, Ch. 9, section 4, p 197,(iii) Al-Toyuriyyat, by al-Salafi, from Abdullah Ibn Ahmad Hanbal.    

(b) It is in Hadith – حَدَّثَنَا أبي ، قال : حَدَّثَنا جَرِير ، عَنِالأَعْمَش ، عن مُنْذِرٍ الثَّوْرِيّ ، عن سَعْد بن حُذَيْفَة ، قال : قال عَمَّار: والله ما أَسْلَموا ولَكِنَّهُم اسْتَسْلَمُوا وأسرُّوا الْكُفْر حَتَّى وجدوا عليهأَعْوَانًا فأَظْهَروه  [ Ammar (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) (on the eve of the Battle of Siffeen) said : ‘By Allah they did not convert to Islam but they surrendered and veiled disbelief until they found support so they unveiled it’. ] (Tarikh Ibn Abi Khaythama, Vol 2, Page 991) 

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