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					                          FOUR RIGHTLY - GUIDED CALIPHS OF ISLAM

                            Sayyiduna Abu Bakr ::<>:: Sayyiduna Umar Al Farouq
                               Sayyiduna 'Uthman Ghani ::<>:: Sayyiduna Ali

               Were the consecutive successors of Sayyiduna Rasulullah
                            (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam).

These four Khulafaa (pl. for Caliph) are called the "Khulafaa-e-Rashidun" or the "Rightly Guided Caliphs."
Together, these four Khulafaa ruled the Islamic State for about 29 years. They are called "Rightly
Guided"because they ruled the people of that time exactly according to the Holy Quran and the commands of
Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam).

                           Sayyiduna Abdullah ibn Umar (radi Allahu anhu) has said:

"Those who are desirous of following anyone, should follow the Sahaba who were the best of community, whose
hearts were pure, whose wisdom was profound and who did not believe in the exhibition of outer life. They were
a people whom Allah had selected His Nabi (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) and who extended His religion to the
world. Therefore, try to imitate their ways and manners, for by Allah, they were rightly guided people."

A Hadith on the Status of the Four Khulafa
In the book, "Shawaa'idul-Haqq", Sayyiduna Shaikh Abu Abdullah (radi Allahu anhu) narrates the following

Once I visited the Holy City of Makkah and met a man who claimed that he never felt thirsty. When I asked him
the reason for this strange event, he replied, "There was a time when I did not have any respect for the Sahaba
of Muhammad (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). One night, I dreamt that it was the Day of Qiyamah and there were
many people in various queues looking very thirsty and ragged. I decided to follow a queue. We arrived at the
Fountain of Kauther and saw that it had four corners. At each corner were the four Caliphs, Sayyiduna Abu Bakr,
Sayyiduna Umar, Sayyiduna Uthman and Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhum). I thought that there was no need
for me to approach the first three Caliphs as I only believed in Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu). Yet, when I
approached him, he turned his head away in displeasure. Feeling extremely alarmed, I approached the other
three Caliphs and they also behaved in the same manner. By now I was very despondent.

"I noticed that Nabi Muhammad (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) was also approaching the Fountain. I ran towards
him and explained to him the behaviour of the four Caliphs. He replied, 'Why should beloved Ali offer you a cool
drink, when you bear hatred and scorn for the Sahaba?' When I heard this, I asked Sayyiduna Rasoolullah (sallal
laahu alaihi wasallam) whether I would be forgiven or not if I asked pardon for my incorrect beliefs. He replied
that I would be forgiven. I then recited the Kalimah again and asked for forgiveness. I was then ordered to return
to the Fountain of Kauther and drink from it. After this, I awoke from my sleep. From that night onwards, I have
never felt thirsty. I then warned my family that I would only accept those as my true family if they accepted my
true beliefs. Some of them did accept".

The presence of the four Caliphs at the four Pillars of Kauther is also substantiated by a Hadith. Sayyiduna
Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said, "The Fountain of Kauther possesses four Pillars: one commanded
by Abu Bakr, the second by Umar, the third by Uthman and the fourth by Ali (radi Allahu anhum)".

Again, explaining the lofty status of these four Caliphs, Sayyiduna Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said,
"He who speaks good about Abu Bakr, his religion is well established; he who speaks good about Umar, his
religious path has been well grounded' he who speaks good about Uthman is enlightened with the Noor of
Almighty Allah' and he who speaks good about Ali holds on to a bond that never breaks. They who speak well of
my Sahaba (Companions) are truly Mu'mins". (Shawaa'idul Haqq)


The First Caliph of Islam

Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu's) real name was Abdullah, and he was given the title of "As Siddique"
or"Testifier to the Truth." His father, 'Uthman, was known as Abu Quhafah and his mother, Salma, was known as
Ummul Khair. He was two and a half years younger than Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam).

He was the first among the Sahaba to accept Islam. He accompanied Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi
wasallam) during the Hijrah to Madinatul Munawwarah. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) was a merchant.
He freed many slaves, including Sayyiduna Bilal (radi Allahu anhu) and Sayyiduna Umayyah bin Qahaf (radi
Allahu anhu). He participated in all the battles in which Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) had to
fight the Kuffar.

Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) loved his faith more than anything else. At the Battle of Badr, his son,
Sayyiduna Abdur Rahman (radi Allahu anhu), was fighting on the side of the Kuffar. After accepting Islam,
Sayyiduna Abdur Rahman (radi Allahu anhu) said to his father, "O Father, at Badr, you were twice under my
sword, but my love for you held my hand back." To this, Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) replied, "Son, if I
had you only once under my sword, you would have been no more." He was so uncompromising in his faith.

At the time of the Battle of Tabuk, he donated all his wealth to the war effort, and when Sayyiduna Rasulullah
(sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) asked him, "What have you left for your family,?" he replied, "Allah and His Rasool
(sallal laahu alaihi wasallam)."

After his election as the Caliph, Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) addressed the Muslims with these words:

"O People! I have been chosen by you as your leader, although I am no better than any of you. If I do any
wrong, set me right. Listen, truth is honesty and untruth is dishonesty. The weak among you are the powerful in
my eyes, as long as I do not give them their dues. The powerful among you are weak in my eyes, as long as I do
not take away from them what is due to others.

"Listen carefully, if people give up striving for the Cause of Almighty Allah, He will send down disgrace upon
them. If people become evil-doers, Almighty Allah will send down calamities upon them.

"Obey me as long as I obey Allah and His Rasul (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). If I disobey Allah and His Rasul
(sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), you are free to disobey me."

Such was the first Caliph of Islam. Indeed, the world would be a better place to live in, if we had leaders like
Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu).

Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) now sent Sayyiduna Usamah (radi Allahu anhu) on the expedition to Syria
to fight the Romans, even though he had to attend to all the internal problems of the Islamic State.

The news that Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) had passed away, made some new Muslims
think that the Islamic State would crumble and they refused to pay the Zakaah. These new Muslims could not yet
get used to their faith and its requirements until then. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) declared, "By Allah!
Even if a single thread is due from a man, he must give it. If he refuses, I will declare war against him."

Some others became imposters and renegades. Tulaiha, Musailimah, Maalik bin Nuwairah, Aswad Ansi and a
woman named Sajah claimed that they were prophets and caused a great deal of confusion. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr
(radi Allahu anhu) was quick to take action against these imposters.

Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) was sent to deal with Tulaiha who fled to Syria and later became a
Muslim. Maalik bin Nuwarah was killed. Sayyiduna Ikramah (radi Allahu anhu) and Sayyiduna Surahbil (radi
Allahu anhu) were sent to take action against Musailimah, but they were defeated. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi
Allahu anhu) sent Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) to tackle the notorious Musailamah who married
Sajah. In the fight that followed, Sayyiduna Wahshi (radi Allahu anhu) killed Musailamah. Musailamah and Aswad
Ansi also claimed to be prophets while Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) was alive. Aswad was
killed by the Muslims of Yemen.

Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu's) swift and bold steps saved the Islamic State from the serious danger of
chaos and confusion. He could now attend to other urgent problems.
During his Khilaafat, Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) had to take action against the Iranian Empire. The
Emperor of Iran, Khusrou Parvez, was killed by his son, Shirooya, and the whole empire fell into chaos and
disorder. Hurmuz, the Persian governor of Iraq, was very hostile to the Arabs and he was also cruel to the
Muslims living in that area.

Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) sent Sayyiduna Muthamia (radi Allahu anhu) to take action against the
Iranians in Iraq. His forces were not enough and Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) was then sent
with reinforcements. The Muslim army captured vast areas of the Iranian Empire in several battles.

Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) then turned his attention to the Romans who were causing trouble in the
North-West frontier. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) sent 4 separate armies under Sayyiduna Ubaidah bin
Jarrah, Sayyiduna Amr Ibnul As, Sayyiduna Yazid bin Abu Sufyaan and Sayyiduna Surahbil bin Hasnal (radi
Allahu anhumul ajma'in) to deal with the Roman power.

The four armies joined into one unit to face the Romans more effectively. The Romans had amassed 150 000
soldiers, but the total Muslim army was only 24 000. Reinforcements were requested. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi
Allahu anhu) asked Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) to take charge of the Iraqi front and Sayyiduna
Muthanna (radi Allahu anhu) to rush to the Syrian front to help fight the huge Roman army. The armies met in
Yarmuk after Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) passed away. In this battle, the Romans were totally

Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) fell ill at this time and passed away on the 21st of Jamadi-ul-Aakhir 13
A.H. (22 August 634). His rule lasted 2 years and 3 months. He was 63 years old.

One of the many contributions of Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) was the collection and compilation of
the Holy Quran.

He lived a very simple, pious and upright life. He was a true servant of Almighty Allah and a meticulous follower
of Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam).

He wore ordinary clothes and his meals were very simple. He attended to house-hold work and would go out at
night and seek the poor and destitute. Humility and modesty were the keynotes of his character. He felt
embarrassed when people showered praises on him or showed him immense respect. He often fasted during the
day and spent the whole night in Salaah and meditation. He was a great orator and a master of genealogy (one
who can trace a person's family line). In personal life, he was a Saint. He used all his powers to promote the
interest of Islam and the good of people.


The Second Caliph of Islam

Before he passed away, Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) consulted the senior Sahaba and elected
Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) as the second Caliph of the Muslims.

He was the son of Khattab and is famous in Islamic history as "Al Farooq" or "One who Distinguishes between
Right and Wrong." His acceptance of Islam is also very famous.

Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) was a very brave and straight-forward person. He was tough and
uncompromising in Islamic principles. He was a great and talented ruler. During his Khilaafat, vast areas of the
Roman and Persian empires and the whole of Egypt were brought under Islamic rule. He was also a gifted orator.
He was very concerned for the welfare of the Muslims. He left a honourable legacy for Muslims after him. The
Holy Quran was given to him by Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) for safe-keeping.
Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anu) was a strong disciplinarian. He noticed the tremendous popularity of Sayyiduna
Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu). He felt that people will lose trust in Almighty Allah and put all their trust in
Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu). He feared that the people may think too highly of him, thereby
possibly increasing the self-esteem of Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) which would also breed
arrogance, so he removed Sayyiduna Khalid (radi Allahu anhu) and appointed Sayyiduna Abu Ubaidah bin Jarrah
(radi Allahu anhu) as the Commander in Chief of the Muslim army.

Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) happily accepted the orders of Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu)
and then served as an ordinary soldier. This is an example of the Islamic teachings of obedience to leadership!

Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) had left Sayyiduna Muthanna (radi Allahu anhu) in command of the
Muslim forces on the Iraqi front when he rushed to Yarmuk. Sayyiduna Muthanna (radi Allahu anhu) was finding
it difficult to counter the enemy and went personally to Madinatul Munawwarah to ask Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi
Allahu anhu) for re-inforcements. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) had by that time passed away.

Sayyiduna Muthanna (radi Allahu anhu's) absence from the Iraqi front made things worse there. The Iranians
regrouped under the command of Rustam and recaptured the lands taken by the Muslims. Rustam sent 2
columns of his army, one to Hirah and the other to Kaskar.

Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) sent Sayyiduna Abu Ubaidah (radi Allahu anhu), as Commander, to deal with
the situation. Both the Persian columns were defeated. Rustam sent an even larger army and defeated the

Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) raised another army and defeated the Persians. But the Persian court sent yet
another larger army, and forced Sayyiduna Muthanna (radi Allahu anhu) to withdraw. The report of the new
situation was sent to Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) and reinforcements under the command of Sayyiduna
Saad bin Abi Waqqas (radi Allahu anhu) were sent.

The Persian and Muslim army met at Qadisiyah. After a long battle on several fronts, the outnumbered Muslim
army defeated the 120 000 Persian soldiers and recaptured Hirah and their areas in the year 14 A.H. (636 C.E).

Muslims laid siege to Damascus during Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu's) rule as Caliph. It continued, after
he passed away, and lasted 70 days during the rule of Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu). After the long siege,
Sayyiduna Khalid bin Walid (radi Allahu anhu) took the Romans by surprise and entered the city. The Governor
surrendered and a peace treaty was signed.

Meanwhile, Sayyiduna Amr ibn As (radi Allahu anhu) was laying siege to Jerusalem. Sayyiduna Khalid, Sayyiduna
Abu Ubaidah and other Sahaba (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in) also joined him. The Christians had little hope and
decided to give in. They also suggested that the keys of Jerusalem be given to Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu
anhu) himself personally. Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) went to Jerusalem. An agreement was signed that
guaranteed the safety of the city and the safety of the Christians.

A Persian non-Muslim, named Firoz and nicknamed "Abu Lulu," complained to Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu)
about his master, Sayyiduna Mughirah bin Shuba (radi Allahu anhu), who imposed tax on him. Sayyiduna Umar
(radi Allahu anhu) told Firoz that the tax was reasonable. This made Firoz angry.

The next day, during the Fajr Salaah, he stabbed Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) 6 times in the back,
severely wounding the Caliph. Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) passed away 3 days later in 23 A.H. He was 63
years old. He ruled the Islamic State for 10 years, 6 months and 4 days.

In a short space of 10 years, Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) had been well-known for his outstanding
achievements and reforms in Islam. Some of these reforms were:-
1. He established the "Baitul Maal" (People's treasury for the state and public).

2. Judicial courts of Justice were set in the country. Judges and Magistrates handled all cases.

3. Establishment of an army headquarters for the defence of the country.

4. Construction of roads and canals.

5. Schools were established. Salaries for Imams, Mu'azzins and Ustaads were organized.

6. Masjids were improved and built in Makkatul Mukarramah and Madinatul Munawwarah. This included facilities
for the Haajis.

7. Police Stations and prisons were built.

8. Establishment of the first Islamic Lunar calendar beginning from the Hijrah.

9. Proper weights and measures introduced.

10. Population census established.

11. Built orphanages and welfare homes.

12. Established proper punishment system and banned slavery.

Simplicity and devotion were the main characters of Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu). He used to wear clothes
that had many patches and yet received Governors, convoys and diplomats. He took just enough allowance from
the State to have a simple meal and wear simple clothes. At times he was very poor. He used to visit the old
people and sick and even do their house work. He used to visit the houses of the soldiers and inquire about their
families. He stayed awake at night in Salaah and often kept Fast. He always supported and upheld the cause of
Islam, with his wisdom, energy, dynamism, bravery and little wealth.



The Third Caliph of Islam
Before he passed away, Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu) appointed a six-man Committee to elect his
successor from among themselves. After long discussions and consultation, they elected Sayyiduna 'Uthman bin
Affan (radi Allahu anhu) as the third Caliph of Islam.

Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) belonged to the Ummayah tribe of the Quraish. He was a very rich cloth
merchant. He was known as "Al Ghani" or "The Generous." His father's name was Affan and his mother was

He accepted Islam at the invitation of Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) and migrated to Abyssinia with his
wife, Sayyadah Ruqayyah (radi Allahu anha), who was also the daughter of Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu
alaihi wasallam).

After she passed away, he married Sayyadah Umme Kulthum (radi Allahu anha), another daughter of Sayyiduna
Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). Because of this, he earned the title "Zun Noorain" or "Possessor of Two
Lights." He took part in all the battles with Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) except the Battle
of Badr.
During the Khilaafat of Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu), the rebellion in Azerbhaijaan and Armenia was

Sayyiduna Mu'awiyah (radi Allahu anhu), with the help of Sayyiduna Abi Sarah (radi Allahu anhu), captured
Cyprus by naval attack and brought it under Islamic rule. Vast areas of North Africa including Tripoli, Tunisia and
Morocco were also brought under the Islamic rule.

The Romans, although defeated several times by the Muslims in the past, made another attempt, during the
Khilaafat of Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu), to recapture the lands they had already lost. Constantine, the
Emperor of Rome, made great preparations and attacked Alexandria with a naval fleet five to six thousand
strong. But, the Romans were defeated by the Muslim naval forces under the command of Sayyiduna Abi Sarah
and Sayyiduna Mu'awiyah (radi Allahu anhuma).

The Governors of the provinces, appointed by Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu), were removed and replaced by
members of the new Caliph's clan. The majority of the new governors were inspired by worldly means rather than
by piety and interests of their subjects. People started to demand the removal of these Governors, but the Caliph
did not respond to their appeals. Delegates mainly from Iraq and Egypt, submitted their demands to the Caliph.
The situation, however got out of control.

In the turmoil, Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) himself was made Shaheed by rebels while he was reading
the Holy Quran inside his house. This happened on Friday, the 17th of Zil Hajj in 35 A.H.. He was 84 years old.

Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allah anhu) was a very simple and very kind person. His simplicity and kindness did not
alow him to take strong action against the trouble makers and rioters. Above all, because of his simple-
mindedness, his administration was not as disciplined as it had been during the Khilaafat of Sayyiduna Umar (radi
Allahu anhu).

Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) was a generous man. He used to spend a lot of money for Islam and to
free the slaves. He was a great and pious man who feared and loved Almighty Allah and Sayyiduna Rasulullah
(sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) above everything else. Although he was very rich, his living was very simple. He did
not indulge in luxury. He was ever mindful of death. Major parts of the night were spent in Salaah. He also fasted
every second or third day.

A major achievement of Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) was the duplication of the Holy Quran from the
records kept by Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu), who handed it to Sayyiduna Umar (radi Allahu anhu),
who then handed it to his daughter, Sayyadah Hafsa (radi Allahu anha), the wife of Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal
laahu alaihi wasallam).

Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) made copies of the Holy Quran from the original and sent it to capitals
such as Kufa, Damascus, Makkatul Mukarramah and Basrah, each accompanied by a Sahabi for the guidance of
the readers.


The Fourth Caliph of Islam

After Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) passed away, Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) was elected as the
fourth Caliph by the Muslims. During the period of the first three Caliphs, Madinatul Munawwarah continued to be
the capital of the Muslim world, but Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) transferred the Islamic capital to Kufah in
Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) was the son of Abu Taalib, an uncle of Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi
wasallam). Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) was married to Sayyadah Bibi Fathima (radi Allahu anha), the
daughter of Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). They had 3 sons, Sayyiduna Hassan, Sayyiduna
Hussain and Sayyiduna Mohsin (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in).

Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) took part in the battle of Badr, Khandaq and Khaibar. At Khaibar, it was
Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) who subdued the Jews with his furious assault. He also held many important
positions during the time of Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) and the first 3 Caliphs before him.

He had a love for learning and was a great and learned person himself. He had been given the title of "Baabul
I'lm"or "Gate of Learning" by Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). He was also called "Asaadullah"
or "Lion of Allah."

The situation in Madinatul Munawwarah after the murder (Shahaadah) of Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu)
was serious. Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu's) first task was to rid Madinatul Munawwarah of the rebels and to
return the situation to normal.

Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) was able to force the rebels to withdraw from Madinatul Munawwarah and to
establish peace and order in the city. The powerful governor of Syria, Sayyiduna Mu'awiyah (radi Allahu anhu),
challenged Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) and refused to pay homage to him. Sayyiduna Mu'awiyah (radi Allahu
anhu) insisted that Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) arrest the murderers of Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu
anhu) and hand them over to him.

Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) was a man with a deep sense of justice and did not want to accuse the wrong
people. He needed a peaceful period to trace the culprits. But, Sayyiduna Mu'awiyah (radi Allahu anhu) began
accusing him of protecting the murderers, and in this way the old enmity between the two families were revived.

Unlike most of Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu's) governors, Sayyiduna Muaawiyah (radi Allahu anhu)
displayed great administrative ability and was very popular. He was a God-fearing man and especially known for
his mercy. Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) was very strict in piety and straight forward. Sayyiduna Muaawiyah
(radi Allahu anhu) declared his disobedience to him, because he felt that he was better qualified to lead the
Muslim world.

Another serious development took place. Sayyadah Aishah (radi Allahu anha) and two leading Sahaba, Sayyiduna
Talha and Sayyiduna Zubair (radi Allahu anhuma) declared their opposition to the Khilaafat of Sayyiduna Ali (radi
Allahu anhu). They left Madinatul Munawwarah for Makkatul Mukarramah and from there travelled to Basrah
where they rallied men and new supporters.

Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) had to crush all opposition. A bloody battle took place near Basrah on the 9th of
December 656 A.C. This battle was sparked off by a third force who were the real troublemakers. Just before the
battle, both parties had already reached an agreement to settle the dispute. But this third force, the real
assassinators of Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi Allahu anhu), launched an overnight attack on both camps
simultaneously. Each side were under the impression that the other had attacked. The battle began. Several
thousand men were lost including the two Sahaba. Sayyadah Aishah (radi Allahu anha) was safe. She was riding
a camel during the battle-hence the name "Battle of the Camel." Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) treated her in a
most noble and dignified manner and respectfully sent her back to Madinatul Munawwarah. She praised him and
deeply regretted opposing Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu). Kufa was now made the capital of the Islamic world.

Sayyiduna Muaawiyah (radi Allahu anhu) rallied an army to face Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu). A battle took
place at Siffin on the Syrian border in the July of 567 A.C. Sayyiduna Muaawiyah (radi Allahu anhu) was no match
for Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) and began to retreat. By the clever proposal of Sayyiduna Amr bin Al As (radi
Allahu anhu), the retreating army raised pieces of the Holy Quran on their spears demanding judgement between
the two parties. Many pious Muslims on the side of Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) refused to fight seeing the
Holy Quran displayed in the air.
Two men, one from each side, were appointed to settle the dispute. Sayyiduna Abu Musa (radi Allahu anhu), a
pious Sahaba from Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu's) side, and the skilled Sayyiduna Amr (radi Allahu anhu) from
Sayyiduna Muaawiyah (radi Allahu anhu's) side. Sayyiduna Musa (radi Allahu anhu) declared in front of the
Muslims that it was decided to recommend the removal of both Sayyiduna Ali and Sayyiduna Muaawiyah (radi
Allahu anhuma) and that the Muslims should select another man for the Khilaafat. Sayyiduna Amr (radi Allahu
anhu) replied that: "He has declared the removal of his leader, while I would conform Muaawiyah as the Caliph."
Chaos followed.

Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) prepared to meet Sayyiduna Muaawiyah (radi Allahu anhu) again in battle, but
he was moved from his task by a serious conflict that occurred among his men. Some narrow-minded people
accused Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) of accepting a man-made judgement. Their slogan was: "There is no
judgment but with Allah." They declared that Sayyiduna Ali, Sayyiduna Muaawiyah and Sayyiduna 'Uthman (radi
Allahu anhumul ajma'in) were unbelievers and that Jihad should be declared against them. Ever since this event,
they have been known as the "Khaarijees", which means, "those who left the fold." They maintained that the
Khilaafat should be given to the most eligible Muslim, regardless of his origin. The Kharijees are not regarded as

On the 17th of July 659 A.C., Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) overcame the Khaarijees in a battle near
Nahrawan, in which, it is said, that 40 000 lives were lost.

In the early morning of the 24th of January 661 A.C., Abdul Rahman bin Muljim, a Khaariji fanatic lay in ambush
in the Masjid of Kufah and stabbed Sayyiduna Ali (radi Allahu anhu) when he entered the masjid. He passed away
from the wound. He was 63 years old.

Sayyiduna Ali (radi allahu anhu) lived a simple life. He refused any luxury food and wore simple clothes thinking
of the poor. He should sleep on the ground and even sit on the floor. He repaired his own clothes and shoes and
even did manual labour. He spent nights in Salaah and should fast for three days in a row. Honesty, piety, justice
and love of truth were the main marks of his character.

IMAM SHAAFEE (150 A.H. - 204 A.H.) :
Mohammed bin Idris Al Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu anhu) famously known as Imam
Shaafa'ee was born in 150 A.H. and belonged to the Quraish tribe.


When he was 10 years old, he came to Makkatul Mukarramah from Palestine where
he grew up. He was very intelligent and had an excellent memory. He memorized
the entire Holy Quran at the age of 7. By the age of 15, he had memorized the entire
Muwatta of Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu). Before the age of 20, he studied Islamic
Jurisprudence under the Mufti of Makkatul Mukarramah, Sayyiduna Muslim bin Khalil
al Zanji and also Sayyiduna Sufyaan bin Uyayana (radi Allahu anhuma). Imam
Maalik bin Anas (radi Allahu anhu) was also his teacher.
       Mazar Hazrat Imam Al Shafi’i (May Allah be pleased with him) in Cairo

When the Governor of Iraq visited Madinatul Munawwarah, he was so impressed by
Imam Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu anhu) that he persuaded him to become an
Administrator. As Imam Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu anhu) was in conflict with the
Government officials, he was deported to Iraq and brought in front of Haroun
Rasheed who was very impressed with Imam Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu anhu).

He now studied Islamic Jurisprudence under Imam Mohammed Ash Shaybaani (radi
Allahu anhu), who was the student of Imam Abu Yusuf (radi Allahu anhu), who was
the student of Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu). Thus, Imam Shaafa'ee
(radi Allahu anhu) became a master of both the Hanafi and Shaafa'ee School of Fiqh.

On his way to Egypt, he lectured in Makkatul Mukarramah in the Haram Shareef.
Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu), who was studying at the time in
Makkatul Mukarramah found great benefit from these lectures. Imam Shaafa'ee (radi
Allahu anhu) then went to Baghdad where he spent 3 or 4 years and finally went to
Egypt. He was now 50 years old.

In Egypt, scholars from all over the world came to study at his feet. His famous
pupils were Sayyiduna Rabi bin Sulayman, Sayyiduna Abu Yacoob Al Ruwayta and
Sayyiduna Abu Ebraheem bin Yahya Al Muzani (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in).

"Kitaabul Umm" and "Ar Risaalah" are the two famous books on Islamic Fiqh written
by him.

Some reports say that he was injured seriously by a person called Fityan, while other
reports mention that he passed away through natural illness on the last day of Rajab
in the year 204 Egypt. Maalik Al Kaamil, the Ayyubid Sultan, built a Mazaar for
him in 608 A.H.

Imam Maalik (93 A.H. - 179 A.H.) :
Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu) was born in 93 A.H. He was born in the period of the
Ummayyad Dynasty. His full name is Maalik bin Anas.


Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu's) grandfather and uncle were great scholars of
Hadith. Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu) learnt Ahadith from his uncle, Sayyiduna Abu
Suhail Nafi (radi Allahu anhu). The Imam was a very keen scholar from his childhood

Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu) had many illustrious teachers. Most of them were
great Taabi'i scholars who learnt under the Sahaba. Some of his teachers used to
teach in Masjidun Nabawi. He learnt how to read the Holy Quran from Sayyiduna Abu
Radim Nafi Abdur Rahman (radi Allahu anhu).

He also learnt Hadith under Sayyiduna Nafi, Sayyiduna Jafer Saadiq, Sayyiduna
Mohammed bin Yahya Ansaari, Sayyiduna Abu Haashim Salmah, Sayyiduna Yahya
bin Said and Sayyiduna Hishaam bin Urwah (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in).

Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu's) fame spread far and wide and many great scholars
sat in his company learning Ahadith and other Islamic legal issues. Some 1300
scholars sat at his feet. They copied the "MUWATTA" from him. The "Muwatta" is a
collection of Ahadith by Imam Maalik (radi Allah anhu). Many of his pupils copied the
Muwatta, the famous among them being: Sayyiduna Yahya bin Yahya Al Masmudi,
Sayyiduna ibn Wahab Abu Mohammed Abdullah and Sayyiduna Abi Abdullah Abdur
Rahman Abdur Rahman (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in).

Even Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu), his teacher, held Imam Maalik
(radi Allahu anhu) in great regard and respect and should sit in his study circle.
Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu) liked his students to read aloud while he listened. He
used to sit on a high chair with students all around taking notes.

He was a great "Muhaddith" (A Scholar of Hadith). He was very careful in selecting
Hadith, and after examining them thoroughly used to record it in his Muwatta.

As a Jurist, he was not afraid of giving a "Fatawa" (Legal Islamic Ruling) even if it
was against the Caliph. He was once flogged for doing so.

He passed away on the 11th of Rabi-ul-Awwal in the year 179 A.H. He was 86 years
old. Imam Maalik (radi Allahu anhu) is buried in Janatul Baqi in Madinatul

He never wore shoes whilst in Madinatul Munawwarah. He never sat on a horse or
used the toilets in this blessed city. He always went out of the city to relieve himself.
He used to kiss the old buildings and the remains of old foundations, saying that
Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) may have walked by, touched it
or saw it. Such was his adoration for Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi


Imam Abu Abdullah Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Hambal :
Imam Abu Abdullah Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu) was born
in Marw on the 20th of Rabi-ul-Awwal 164 A.H.


His father, Sayyiduna Mohammed (radi Allahu anhu) was a warrior (Mujaahid) and
lived in Basrah, Iraq. Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu) was a very
intelligent child, keenly interested in furthering his Islamic education. At the age of
16, he began studying Hadith literature. It is said that he learnt almost a million
Ahadith by heart. He became a famous Jurist.

Some of his teachers were Imam Shaafa'ee, Sayyiduna Bishar bin Al Mufaddal,
Sayyiduna Ismail bin Ulayyah, Sayyiduna Jarir bin Abdul Hamid and Sayyiduna
Yahya bin Said (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in).

The great compilers of Ahadith, Imam Bukhaari and Imam Muslim (radi Allahu
anhuma), including his teacher, Imam Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu anhu), have also
reported Hadith from him. Imam Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu anhu), in spite of being the
most learned in his time, used to refer to Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu
anhu) about certain Ahadith.

Amongst his pupils, the most famous were Sayyiduna Abu Bakr Al Alhram,
Sayyiduna Hambal bin Ishaaq and Sayyiduna Abul Qasim Al Baghwi (radi Allahu
anhumul ajma'in).

Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu) was a very pious scholar who devoted
all his life in the Science of Ahadith and Fiqh. He refused to eat in anyone's house
who held a Governmental post. Being extremely poor with no food to eat at times,
he used to still refuse to accept charity saying that he had full faith in Almighty Allah.
The most famous among his books are: Kitaabul A'maal, Kitaabut Tafseer, Kitaabul
Naasikh wal Mansookh, Kitaabul Zahid, Kitaabul Masaa'il, Kitaabul Fadaa'il and
Kitaabul Mansiq.

His most famous book is his "MUSNAD", a kitab in which he collected about 50 000
to 70 000 Ahadith.

Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu), in the later years of his life, was
imprisoned and tortured by the ruthless rulers who went against him due to their un-
Islamic beliefs and practises. Caliph Mutasim billah forced the Imam to accept the
beliefs of the "Mu'tazalis" (a corrupt sect), but he refused, and was beaten to such a
degree that his joints were dislocated. He was kept in heavy chains for 30 months in
a prison in Baghdad. He still refused to accept the beliefs of the corrupt Mu'tazali
Sect and was again beaten till he fell unconscious.

On the 25th of Ramadaan in the year 221 A.H., Caliph Mutasim, in fear of the sin he
committed, repented and set the Imam free. Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu
anhu) forgave all the people except the Mutazalis. He passed away in the year 241


Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (80 A.H. - 150 A.H.)

Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu's) full name was Numan bin Thaabit bin
Zuta bin Mah. He was born in Kufa in Iraq in 80 A.H. He belonged to the pious period
of the Taabi'ins (Successors of the Sahabas).


It is stated in a Hadith Shareef which Imam al-Harizmi reported from Sayyiduna Abu
Hurayrah (radi Allahu anhumA) that Sayyiduna Rasulullah (sallal laahu alaihi
wasallam) said: "Among my Ummah, there will come a man called Abu Hanifa. On
the Day of Resurrection, he will be the light of my Ummah." Another Hadith Shareef
states: "In every century, a number of my Ummah will attain to high grades. Abu
Hanifa will be the highest of his time." These two Ahadith are recorded in "Durr al-

While still in his youth, he met great Sahaba like Sayyiduna Anas bin Maalik,
Sayyiduna Sahl bin Saad and Sayyiduna Abul Tufail Amir bin Wathilah (radi Allahu
anhumul ajma'in). Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) was first brought up
as a trader, but soon started taking deep interest in Islamic learning.

He attended the lectures of Sayyiduna Hammad Basri (radi Allah anhu) in Fiqh and
then began to study the Hadith. He learnt under great scholars in Kufa. In Basrah he
studied under two great Taabi'ie scholars who had learnt Hadith under the Sahaba.

In Makkatul Mukarammah and Madinatul Munawwarah, he learnt under Sayyiduna
Ata bin Abi Rabah and Sayyiduna Ikramah (radi Allahu anhuma). In fact, Imam
A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) had numerous teachers. Some historians say
that he learnt Hadith from about 4 000 scholars.

Some of his famous teachers were: Sayyiduna Imam Baaqir, Sayyiduna Imam Jafer
Saadiq, Sayyiduna Ali, Sayyiduna Abu Hurayrah, Sayyiduna Abdullah ibn Umar,
Sayyiduna Aqabah bin Umar, Sayyiduna Safwaan, Sayyiduna Jabir and Sayyiduna
Abu Qatadah (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in).

When his teacher, Sayyiduna Hammad Basri (radi Allahu anhu) passed away, Imam
A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) was 40 years old and he began teaching. He
became very famous and travelled many places. Students from all over the Muslim
world came to him to listen to his lectures, interviews and debates. Imam Maalik
(radi Allahu anhu) also learnt under him.

When he was 56 years old, Caliph Mansur came to power after the Ummayad
dynasty was overthrown by the Abbasids in 132 A.H. Since Imam Abu Hanifa (radi
Allahu anhu) opposed the Caliph's ruthless killing of the Ahle Bait, he was arrested.
The Caliph offered the Imam the post of a Qaadi (Judge), but he refused. The Caliph
Mansur had him beaten with a stick 30 strokes. His feet bled. Caliph Mansur
repented and offered Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) 30 000 pieces of
silver. The great Imam refused once more. He was imprisoned again and thrashed
10 more strokes every day.

In the Month of Rajab 150 A.H., Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) passed
away while in Salaah. He had been poisoned by the orders of Caliph Mansur. His
Janaza Salaah was performed six times and each time 50 000 people took part.
People continued to come and pray for him for 20 days after he was buried. He was
70 years old.

In 459 A.H. a Mazaar (Tomb) was built for him by the Seljuki ruler Alp Arsalan. He
lies buried in a Tomb situated near Baghdad in Iraq.

Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) left behind about 980 students. The most
famous among them being:
a. Sayyiduna Qadi Abu Yusuf (radi Allahu anhu)

b. Sayyiduna Imam Muhammed (radi Allahu anhu)

c. Sayyiduna Imam Zufur (radi Allahu anhu)

Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) earned his living by trading. Every Friday,
he distributed 20 gold coins to the poor for his parents soul. For 40 years Imam
A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) performed the Fajr Salaah with the Wudu that
he made for the Esha Salaah (ie. he did not sleep after the night prayer). He
performed Hajj 55 times. He used to recite the entire Holy Quran once every day and
once every night. Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu) had so much of Taqwa
(Piety) that for 30 years he fasted every day (except for the 5 forbidden days). He
often read the Holy Quran in one rakaah or two. He did not accept any presents from
anyone. He wore clothes like those of the poor. Imam A'zam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu
anhu) once said: "I laughed once in my life and I regret it." He talked little and
thought much. It is said that at the place where his soul was taken, he read the Holy
Quran 7 000 times