Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Iran's Fatwa Against Yasser Al Habib

Iran's Supreme Guide has just issued a fatwa calling for strict punishment (that means a death sentence) against Kuwaiti Shia dissident Yasser Al Habib, who is living in the UK, for insulting the Mothers of the Believers. Kuwait has stripped him of his citizenship for the same reason.

OK, this calls for some explanation. Insulting the Mothers of the Believers is a bit more complicated than shouts of, "Yo Mama!"

Muhammad's wife Ayesha was the daughter of Abu Bakr, one of the Prophet's first followers and the first Caliph after his death. Wife Hafsah was the daughter of Umar bin Khattab, another Meccan convert  and Islam's second Caliph. Along with another dozen wives, Ayesha and Hafsah are known as Umahat Al Mumineen, the Mothers of the Belivers. Abu Bakr and Umar bin Khattab, as well as the other Meccans who migrated to Medina with Muhammad, are the Sahabah, or companions of the Prophet.

Ayesha was nine years old when Muhammad consummated his marriage with her. Hafsah had been married at ten but widowed eight years later, and was twenty when Muhammad married her. Their young age in comparison to Muhammad's other wives and the fact that their fathers were both friends of the Prophet and leaders in the community led to a close friendship. When Muhammad slept with one of Hafsah's slaves, as I have described here and here, Ayesha was the one in whom Hafsah confided. As a result they were both the temporary object of their husband's wrath.

Muhammad died on Ayesha's lap and her father, Abu Bakr, was chosen as his successor. Some Muslims believed Ali, a cousin who had lived with the Prophet since he was ten years old and was married to Muhammad's daughter Fatimah, should have been the next leader. Abu Bakr died two years later and Ali was again bypassed as Umar bin Khattab, who was Hafsah's father, was chosen as the second Caliph. The same thing happened with Caliph number three, Uthman, but after he was stabbed to death Ali finally got his chance to lead. Ayesha, who by now carried quite a bit of influence in the Muslim community which had quickly become an empire, accused Ali of not seeking to prosecute those who had killed Uthman. Ali and his two sons (the Prophet's grandsons) were themselves killed soon afterwards and Muslims split into the Sunnis (who follow the Sunna, or example of Muhammad), and the Shia (who believe the Ahl Al Bayt, or relatives of Muhammad, should have succeeded the Prophet).

Fast forward 1400 years to Yasser Al Habib, who claims that Ayesha and Hafsah conspired to murder their husband Muhammad so their fathers could become the leaders of the Muslim empire.

There is something important to understand here. The first 200 years of Muslim history were transmitted via oral tradition until Hadith writers such as Bukhari and Sira biographers such as Ibn Hisham first wrote them down. Even the earliest copies of the Quran date from that later time period. There is no reliable way of knowing what happened in the first 200 years of Muslim history. It is all a matter of faith.

You might be asking the obvious question. Why would Iran, a Shia country, issue a sentence of death in abstentia (otherwise known as a fatwa) against a fellow Shia in London who is saying nothing different than the Shia have believed for 1400 years? What did he do that was so egregious even his own country would take away his citizenship?

Well, Shia and Sunnis are now trying to "come together". Iran wants to assuage the fears of its Sunni neighbors about its nuclear ambitions and territorial aspirations. What better way than to issue a fatwa against a Shia dissident in London? Kuwait, on the other hand, does not want to aggravate its powerful neighbor who resides just a few miles across the Arab or Persian Gulf (even the name depends on which side you live).  What better way than to deprive Yasser Al Habib of his citizenship?

I have an idea. Rather than issuing fatwas in which religious leaders arbitrarily decide what is right or wrong and determine the life or death of another person, why not have an academic conference? After all, we are living in the 21st century. Invite the world's greatest scholars, Muslim as well as non-Muslim, to present their research as to the role Ayesha and Hafsah played in the early struggles of Islamic power and leadership, and be willing to go wherever the evidence takes you.

It will never happen, of course. And for the same reason an academic conference will never be held to examine the historical evidence whether or not Muhammad was a Prophet of God and the Quran is a text from God. That would be too much for Muslims, who cannot even imagine life without Muhammad. It's much easier to just issue another fatwa.

17 comments:

Susanne said...

Yes, it's more fun to issue orders like you are a little god instead of studying the facts and leaving open the possibility that another conclusion will be reached. Interesting post - thank you!

Traeh said...

Wait. You say that Shia have always believed that Aisha and Hafsa conspired with Omar and Abu Bakr to kill Muhammad?

My understanding of the Shia belief is that Abu Bakr and Omar conspired against Ali. Not that they also killed Muhammad...

Am I missing something here?

Quotable Quotes: said...

Traeh,
I didn't say the Shia have always believed that Aisha and Hafsa conspired with Omare and Abu Bakr to kill Muhammad. I only reported that Yasser al-Habib preached that they did, and had a fatwa issued against him for that reason. I do not know how wide this belief is among the Shai, nor do I know the evidence upon which Yasser bases this belief.

noorulqamar said...

I suggest all my brothers&sisters to read completely the below mentioned book before setting up any conclusion: http://www.al-islam.org/restatement/1.htm

Khan's said...

Mr you have no knowledge about islam ....plz don't waste our time

Anonymous said...

I believe the author has a conscience, but if u dont, it's actually not surprising. Posting all these lies about Islaam shows how terrible a person you are! By the way, the prophet never had a sibling, Ali was his cousin and NOT his nephew!

Quotable Quotes: said...

Anonymous,
Thank you for your correction about Ali being the cousin and not the nephew of Muhammad. I knew that Ali was the son of Muhammad's uncle Abu Talib, but typed nephew and not cousin by mistake.

Please let me know of any other factual errors you find in my blog, as historical and linguistic accuracy is important to me.

Anonymous said...

To Quotable Qoutes,

Nice article, and very good. But I want to say something here. You said this: " ....nor do I know the evidence upon which Yasser bases this belief...."

What this Sheikh Yasser Al-Habib says, is qouted from sunni books, and from sunni authentic sources. And when you say, you dont know, means you have not studied him and heared his complaints against sunni books and when sunni write rediculous stories about omar, abu bakr, aisha and hafsa in their own books, then it is not punishable.

Atleast, this Sheikh has not said anything by himself, but just qouted all those stories from sunni authentic books and authentic references.

Jamie Griffin said...

To Quotable Qoutes, Nice article, and very good. But I want to say something here. You said this: " ....nor do I know the evidence upon which Yasser bases this belief...." What this Sheikh Yasser Al-Habib says, is qouted from sunni books, and from sunni authentic sources. And when you say, you dont know, means you have not studied him and heared his complaints against sunni books and when sunni write rediculous stories about omar, abu bakr, aisha and hafsa in their own books, then it is not punishable. Atleast, this Sheikh has not said anything by himself, but just qouted all those stories from sunni authentic books and authentic references.

Anonymous said...

Having been listening to Yasser Al-Habeeb's lectures over the past few weeks, I have now come to the understanding of the histroy that Islam was hijacked by Abu Bakar, Omer and their daughters when they sabotaged and by force took it from the prophet mohammed's designated sucessor Ali and burned prophet's daughter's house whcih eventually killed her along with her unborn child.
Abu Bakar, Omer and then Ayesha were the first to introduce terrorism in Islam against prophet and his family. The terroism in so called 'Islam' that is practised these days is doctrined in Abu Bakr, Omer and Aysha's doctrine and the same is used by their followers 'the Whahabi and salafi' sunnis' to kill ALL (including the shia scholar in egypt recently) using takfiri thoughts orignated from the abu bakr, omer and ayesha. Yasser is bringing out in public what is not very well known to general public. The reason iran is after him is a politically motived stint for the reasons as the article writer suggested.
This recent awareness of islamic history by Yasser which is contrary and shocking to what the prodominantley state sponsored sunni islam version over the last 1400 hundred years is to say the least shocking. Quite a few in the predominantley sunni islamic world appear to be inching towards his version of non-violent rafidah Islam that has running parallel to the hijacked terrorist version of Islam based on abu bakr, omer and ayesha.
The jist of rafidah version of islam is based on 4 believes in 1)Allah the God, 2) Mohammad the prophet and 3) Ali the designated Imam (and his successors) and the 4th equally important is what he calls baraa (awareness of the enemies and to curse the enemies of the 1,2,3) and hence Abu Bakr, Omer and Ayesha fall into the ones that are to be cursed. As they sabotaged Islam and it seems sunni version takes half of the islam from ayesha.
The devils is in the details of the history and suggest watching his lectures on 'how the Islam was corrupted/weakend' as a starting point. It is a very long road to discover the Rafidah Islam and not for the faint hearted.

Anonymous said...

la nat aisha

salisu said...

la anat aisha

Anonymous said...

Aisha Kafira

Anonymous said...

if worshippers of Abu bakr and Bukhari want the truth they should look at their own books.

mehrour badloe said...

Mehrour badloe about yasser-Al-Habib

I have great respect for Yasser .At least he does not have any personal agenda , but only to defend the good name of the prophet-pbuh-

Most scholars when they debate with non-muslim , especially the arrogant white males
who are tackling the Islam and the prophet-pbuh-
with jealousy feeded revenge always are going
out of the box if they can not make a point.

The first thing they do is referring to the marriage with aisha and that she was only
9years of age and the muslim scholars are
cheewing on their teeth instead of replying back to defend the Prophet-pbuh-

At least the explanation of Mr.yasser is quite clear with proves from the lectures that Aisha was 20 years and was already married before.

Christians also defend Jezus when saying Jezus was homo and John was his lover , but
muslim scholars does not use this point in their debates with non-muslim.I bet christians
would have use this point based on their arrogance .

in the Talmut which is the fundament of Torah and old testament and finally the bible
it was authorized that priests and other
believers can have sex with girls of 3 years old
as well as boys. Our muslim scolars are just
keeping their mouth during debates instead of using this bullets also against the christian debaters.There is a lot more to say about our muslim debaters to become more aggresive,
because it is the same treatment they get from christian debaters by insulting our prophet-pbuh-the same treatment they must
give them in return also to open the eyes of the
christian audience and/or tv watchers.
wassalam-mehrour badloe

Mohammadreza Farhadi Kia said...

That's not what Shias say. Shias respect Omahat al momenin, and the 3 caliphs. They never swear against them. That's what friends of devil such as Al-habib do. He's not a shia. All Shias have disavowed him. They don't accept him as one of them. So, who's Al-Habib? Yasser Al-Habib is a west-supported tool to give Daesh and its supporters a stronger motivation to kill Muslims, and at the end of the day, what happens? If you believe that DAESH is Islam, then OK, Yasser Al-Habib is a Shia. If not, well then, let's spread the word. Yasser Al-Habib is another Zionist agent with a mission to cause disunity and further bloodshed among Muslim brothers. God save Islam.

Anonymous said...

Ahlul bayt Shia Islam is correct and Wahabbi, Salafy, Sunni Islam is this wrong path or sect. Yasser Al-Habib is another Zionist agent with a mission for fitnah and sectarianism. He is out to misquide and manipulate the Muslim youth in all countries around the world! Beware and spread the word.