Muawiyah and Cursing Imam Ali (a.s.) 1

Muawiyah and Cursing Imam Ali (a.s.) 1

What the Prophet said about those who fight, hate, or abuse his Ahlul-Bayt the Messenger of Allah said: "Loving Ali is the sign of belief, and hating Ali is the sign of hypocrisy."(1) This tradition of Prophet was popular to the extent that some of the companions used to say: "We recognized the hypocrites by their hatred of Ali."(2)

Also Muslim in his Sahih narrated on the authority of Zirr that: Ali (RA) said: By him who split up the seed and created something living, the Apostle (may peace and blessing be upon him) gave me a promise that no one but a believer would love me, and none but a hypocrite would nurse grudge against me.(3) Abu Huraira narrated: The Prophet (PBUH&HF) looked toward Ali, al-Hasan, al-Husain, and Fatimah, and said: "I am in the state of war with those who will fight you, and in the state of peace with those who are peaceful to you."(4)

It is the well-known fact in the history that Muawiyah fought Imam Ali (AS). And based on the above tradition of the Prophet (PBUH&HF) the Prophet has declared war on Muawiyah. How can we still love a person whom the Prophet has declared war on him? The Messenger of Allah said: "Whoever hurts Ali, has hurt me"(5) The Messenger of Allah also said: "Whoever reviles/curses Ali, has reviled/cursed me"(6)

Muawiyah Instituting the curse of Imam Ali (AS)

Muawiyah not only fought Imam Ali, he cursed Imam Ali as well. Furthermore, he did force/make everybody to curse Ali (AS). To prove it, we begin with Sahih Muslim: Narrated Sa'd Ibn Abi Waqqas: Muawiyah, the son of Abu Sufyan, give order to Sa'd, and told him: "What prevents you that you are refraining from cursing Abu Turab (nickname of Ali)?" Sa'd replied: "Don't you remember that the Prophet said three things about (the virtue of) Ali? So I will never curse Ali."(7)

The above tradition, by the way, indicates that Muawiyah was surprised why Sa'd does not follow his order of cursing Ali, like others do. This shows that cursing Ali was a habit (Sunnah) for people at that time. Who made this Sunnah? Was it Ali, or those who fought him? Now, who fought against Ali? Wasn't he Muawiyah (the beloved companion of Wahhabis)? So this implies that Muawiyah did innovate that habit (cursing Ali as Sunnah).

Below is more references in Sahih Muslim about Sunnah cursing Imam Ali (AS), to prove that people were urged/forced to curse Ali in public, otherwise they would face a costly sentence. It is narrated on the authority of Abu Hazim that: The Governor of Medina who was one of the members of the house of Marwan called Sahl Ibn Sa'd, and ordered him to curse Ali. But Sahl refused to do so. The governor said: "If you don't want to curse Ali, just say God curse Abu Turab (the nickname of Ali)." Sahl said: "Ali did not like any name for himself better than Abu Turab, and Ali used to become very happy when somebody would call him Abu Turab." (8)

Cursing Imam Ali (AS) was an order from the beginning of Muawiyah's reign for 65 years. He was Umar Ibn Abdil Aziz who canceled this order after more than half a century. Some historians even believe that the Umayyah descendants themselves killed (poisoned) Umar Ibn Abdil Aziz, because he changed their Sunnah, one of which was cursing Ali.(9) One of the ugliest innovations that started during the reign of Muawiyah was that Muawiyah himself, and through his order to his Governors, they used to insult Imam Ali (AS) during the Sermons in the Mosques. This was even done on the pulpit of the mosque of the Prophet in Medina in front of the grave of the Prophet Muhammad (May Allah bless him and his Progeny), so that even the dearest Companions of the Prophet (PBUH&HF), and Imam Ali (AS), his family and his near relatives used to hear these swears with their ears. (10)

On insulting Imam Ali Ibn Abi Talib and cursing him during the Umayyad period starting in Muawiyah's reign, it is reported that: "Ali Ibn Abi Talib was cursed on the pulpits (manabir) of the east and west...", during the time of Muawiyah. (11) In her letter, Umm Salama, the wife of the Prophet (PBUH&HF) wrote to Muawiyah: "...You are cursing Allah and His messenger on your minbar, and that is because you are cursing Ali Ibn Abi Talib and whomever loves him, and I am a witness that Allah and His messenger loved him." But no one paid any attention to what she said. (12) "That it was in the days of Bani Umayyah, more than seventy thousand minbar (in mosques) upon which they cursed Ali Ibn Abi-Talib, in some of what Muawiyah made a Sunnah for them."

Continue in the next article: ( Muawiyah and Cursing Imam Ali (a.s.) (2) )



1. Sunni references:
- Sahih Muslim, v1, p48;
- Sahih Tirmidhi, v5, p643;
- Sunan Ibn Majah, v1, p142;
- Musnad Ahmad Ibn Hanbal v1, pp 84,95,128
- Tarikh al-Kabir, by al-Bukhari (the author of Sahih), v1, part 1, p202
- Hilyatul Awliya', by Abu Nu'aym, v4, p185
- Tarikh, by al-Khateeb al-Baghdadi, v14, p462

2. Sunni references:
- Fada'il al-Sahaba, by Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, v2, p639, Tradition #1086
- al-Istiab, by Ibn Abd al-Barr, v3, p47
- al-Riyad al-Nadirah, by al-Muhib al-Tabari, v3, p242
- Dhakha'ir al-Uqba, by al-Muhib al-Tabari, p91

3. Sahih Muslim, English version, Chapter XXXIV, p46, Tradition #141

4. Sunni references:
(1) Sahih al-Tirmidhi, v5, p699
(2) Sunan Ibn Majah, v1, p52
(3) Fada'il al-Sahaba, by Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, v2, p767, Tradition #1350
(4) al-Mustadrak, by al-Hakim, v3, p149
(5) Majma' al-Zawa'id, by al-Haythami, v9, p169
(6) al-Kabir, by Tabarani, v3, p30, also in al-Awsat
(7) Jamius Saghir, by al-Ibani, v2, p17
(8) Tarikh, by al-Khateeb al-Baghdadi, v7, p137
(9) Sawai'q al-Muhriqah, by Ibn Hajar al-Haythami, Ch. 11, section 1, p221
(10) Talkhis, by al-Dhahabi, v3, p149
(11) Dhakha'ir al-Uqba, by al-Muhib al-Tabari, p25
(12) Mishkat al-Masabih, by Khatib al-Tabrizi, English Version, Tdadition #6145
(13) Others such as Ibn Habban, etc.

5. Sunni references:
- Musnad Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, v3, p483
- Fada'il al-Sahaba, by Ahmad Hanbal, v2, p580, Tradition #981
- Majma' al-Zawa'id, by al-Haythami, v9, p129
- al-Sawa'iq al-Muhriqah, by Ibn Hajar al-Haythami, Ch. 11, section 1, p263
- Ibn Habban, Ibn Abd al-Barr, etc.

6. Sunni reference:
- al-Mustadrak, by al-Hakim, v3, p121, who mentioned this tradition is Authentic.
- Musnad Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, v6, p323
- Fada'il al-Sahaba, by Ahmad Hanbal, v2, p594, Tradition #1011
- Majma' al-Zawa'id, by al-Haythami, v9, p130
- Mishkat al-Masabih, English version, Tradition #6092
- Tarikh al-Khulafa, by Jalaluddin al-Suyuti, p173
- and many others such as Tabarani, Abu Ya'la, etc.

7. Sunni reference: Sahih Muslim, Chapter of Virtues of Companions, Section of Virtues of Ali, Arabic, v4, p1871, Tradition #32./ For the English version of Sahih Muslim, see Chapter CMXCVI, p1284, Tradition #5916

8. Sunni reference: Sahih Muslim, Chapter of Virtues of Companions, Section of Virtues of Ali, Arabic version, v4, p1874, Tradition #38.

9. Sunni reference: (See the Sunni book entitled "History of the Saracens," by Amir Ali, Chapter X, pp 126-127)

10. Sunni references :
- History of al-Tabari, v4, p188
- History of Ibn Kathir, v3, p234; v4, p154
- al-Bidayah wa al-Nihayah, v8, p259; v9, p80

11. Sunni reference: Mu'jam al-Buldan, al-Hamawi, v5, p38

12. Sunni reference: al-Aqd al-Fareed, v2, p300