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Imam Jafar-e-Sadiq (AS)
By: Raed Karmi
Name Jafer (AS)
Agnomen Abu Abdullah
Fathers's name Mohammad Baqir (AS)
Mother's name Umme Farwah
Place of birth Madinah, Monday the 17 th rabiulawwal 83 A.H.
The Holy Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq was the sixth in the succession of the twelve Apostolic Imams. His epithet was Abu "Abdallah and his famous titles were as-Sadiq al-Fadil and at-Tahir. His mother was the daughter of al-Qasim ibn Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr.
Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq was brought up by his grand father, Imam Zaynu'l Abidin in Madina for 12 years and then remained under the sacred patronage of his father Imam Muhammad al-Baqir for a period of nineteen years.
After the death of his holy father in 114 A.H., he succeeded him as the Sixth Imam, and thus the sacred trust of Islamic mission and spiritual guidance was relayed down to his custody right from the Holy Prophet through the succession of the preceding Imams. A brief History of 14 infallibles, Ansarian Publications, Qum, I.R.I. P. 123
The Holy Imam used to say about his knowledge: " our knowledge is what will be (ghabir) of what is past (mazbar),of what is marked in hearts (naki fi al-qulub) and of what is tapped into years (naqr fi'al asma). We have the red case (Jafr), the white case, and the scroll of Fatima, peace be upon her, and we have (the documents called) al'-jami'a in which is everything the people need".
He was asked to explain these words and he said: "Ghabir is knowledge of what will be; mazbar is knowledge of what was; what is marked in the hearts (naki fi'al qulub) is inspiration; and what is tapped into years (naqr fi'al asma) are words of angels. The red case (jafr) is a vessel in which are the weapons of the Apostle of God, may God bless him and his family. It will never leave us until the one (destined) among us members of the House, to arise (qa'im) arises. The white case (jafr) is a vessel in which are the Torah of Moses, the Gospel of Jesus, the Psalms of David and the (other) Books of God. The scroll of Fatima, peace be on her, has in it every event which will take place and the names of all the rulers until the (last) hour comes. (The document called) al' jami'a is a scroll seventy yards long which the Apostle of God, may God bless him and his family, dictated from his own mouth and Ali b. Abi Talib, peace be on him, wrote in his own handwriting. By God, in it is everything which people need until the end of time, including even the blood-wit for wounding, and whether a (full) flogging or half flogging (is due)." [Umar b. Aban reported:]
I asked Abu Abd Allah (Ja'far), peace be on him, about what people were saying that Umm Salama, the mercy of God be on her, had been handed a sealed scroll: "When the Apostle of God, may God bless him and grant him peace, died, Ali, peace be on him, inherited his knowledge, his weapons and what else was, Then that went to al-Hasan, peace be on him, then to al-Husayn, peace be on him."
"Did it go to Ali b. al Husayn, peace be on them, after that, then to his son and now it has come to you?" I asked. "Yes," he replied.
The Holy Imam used to say: "My traditions are my father's traditions; my father's traditions are my grand father's traditions, my grand father's traditions are the traditions of Ali b. Abi Talib, peace be on him, the Commander of the faithful; the traditions of Ali the Commander of the faithful, peace be on him, are the traditions of the Apostle of God, may God bless him and his family; and the traditions of the Apostle of God, may God bless him and his family, are the word of God, the Mighty and High."
POLITICAL AND RELIGIOUS CONDITIONS AT THE TIME OF HIS IMAMAT
The Holy Imam witnessed the reigns of various kings starting from Abdu-l-Malik down to the Ummayad ruler Marwan al-Himar. He further survived till the time of Abu'l-Abbas as-Saffah and al-Mansur among the Abbasids. It was due to the political strife between two groups viz., the Ummayads and Abbasids for power that Imam was left alone undisturbed to carry out his devotional duties and peacefully carry on his mission to propagate Islam and spreading the teachings of the Holy Prophet, may God bless him and his family,.
On the religious side religious morals of Islam had gone down and the teachings of the Holy Prophet were being neglected, as the state of anarchy was rampant. It was amidst such deadly gloom that virtuous personage of Imam Ja'far as Sadiq stood like a beacon of light shedding its lustre to illuminate the ocean sinful darkness around. The world got inclined towards his virtuous and admirable personality. Extracts from Fourteen Infallibles, pp.124-125.
The Imam instructed many scholars in different fields of intellects and transmitted sciences.Among the notable are Hisham al-Kalabi an-Nassabah and Jabir ibn Hayy'an (the Alchemist). Even some important Sunni scholars such as Sufyan ath-Thawri,Abu Hanifa,the founder of the Hanafi School of law, al-qadi as-Sukuni, al-qadi Abu'l Bakhtari, and others had the honour of being his students. It is said that his classes and sessions of instructions produced four thousand scholars of Hadith and other sciences. Extracts from Fourteen Infallibles. pp.126-127.
THE UNIVERSAL INSPIRED KNOWLEDGE ON THE HOLY IMAM (A.S.)
Imam Ja'far Sadiq had such a unique inspired knowledge that not only the Jafri School but other schools too acquired knowledge from him. All of his doctrines can bee studied from the book Imam Al Sadiq; Shaikh Mohammed al-Husayn al Muzaffar (English Translation by Jasim al-Rasheed, Ansarian Publication,Qum Iran,1998.
Only some extracts of very important topics have been either reproduced or an abstract is presented here. His Instructions to his disciples:
He (al-Sadiq A.S.) advised his followers to adopt truthfulness and to pay trust. These things are important for the person to live happily in this world. Al-Sadiq (A.S.) not only urged his students to seek knowledge but also urged them to adopt clemency and gravity. Concerning humbleness, he, peace be upon him, said: "Be humble for whom you teach knowledge, be humble for him from whom you acquire knowledge, do not be haughty scholars, so, your falsehood removes your right. Ibid. p. 120.