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Khasa'is Amir al-Mu'minin Ali b. Abi Talib (a) (book)

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Khasa'is Amir al-Mu'minin Ali b. Abi Talib (a)
Author Abu 'Abd al-Rahman Ahmad b. Shu'ayb al-Nasa'i
Original title خَصائصُ أميرالمؤمنين علي بن أبي طالب علیه السلام
Language Arabic
Subject Excellences of Imam Ali (a)
Published 1382 Sh/2003, Qom
Publisher Bustan-e Ketab


Khaṣāʾiṣ Amīr al-Muʾminīn ʿAlī b. Abī Ṭālib (a) (Arabic:(خَصائصُ أميرالمؤمنين علي بن أبي طالب(ع) was written by Abu 'Abd al-Rahman, Ahmad b. Shu'ayb al-Nasa'i (d. 303/915-6), the Sunni scholar of hadith and the author of al-Sunan. This book was about the virtues and merits of Imam Ali (a). In this book, al-Nasa'i discusses the Islam of Imam Ali (a), his position before the Holy Prophet (s), his closeness to the Holy Prophet (s) and the position of his wife and children.

Importance of the Author and the Book

Al-Nasa'i was one of the six authentic Sunni narrators and his al-Sunan is considered among the Six Sahihs.

Ibn Hajar assessed most of the hadiths al-Nasa'i collected in this book as having authentic and acceptable references.

Al-Nasa'i's book shows that the same fact has been admitted by great Sunni scholars of hadith such as Ibn Hanbal, Isma'il Qadi and Abu Ali Neyshaburi that merits of none of the companions of the Holy Prophet (s), except for Imam Ali (a), have been reported with authentic references.

Great scholars agree about the power of al-Nasa'i in the knowledge of hadiths and rijal and some such as Dar Qutni said, "No one would prefer anyone over al-Nasa'i." Also, al-Dhahabi considered al-Nasa'i more knowledgeable in hadiths and rijal than Muslim, Abu Dawud and al-Tirmidhi. However, he did not regard him flawless and believed that the way to criticize his hadiths should be open.

Since, this book has been written by a hadith scholar who is reliable in the opinion of Sunni people, it has a great position and importance. Al-Nasa'i has also written another book called Musnad Ali b. Abi Talib (a).

Goal of Writing

Towards the end of his life, al-Nasa'i went to Damascus. In this travel, when he saw deviation of people, he decided to write this book in order to guide them. When they asked him about the merits of Mu'awiya, he said, "I do not know any merits for Mu'awiya except for this saying of the Holy Prophet (s) who said, 'may God does not make him satiated.'" Thus, they beat him in Jami' mosque and he wanted to go to Mecca. So they took him to Mecca while he was ill, but he passed away in Mecca out of the wounds he received.

The Content

In this book, al-Nasa'i mentioned 188 narrations about the qualities of Imam Ali (a) with the topic of his pioneership in Islam and then mentions tens of hadiths about the merits of Imam Ali (a) such as Hadiths of Thaqalayn, Tayr, Rayat, Manzilat, Kisa', Ghadir, Sadd Abwab, etc.

In his book, al-Nasa'i mentioned the position of Imam Ali (a) before the Holy Prophet (s), his closeness to the Holy Prophet (s), the position of his wife and children, criticism of his enemies, etc. Some of the chapters of his book are:

  • Ali (a), the first Muslim and the first one who said prayers
  • Position of Ali (a) before God
  • Ali (a), master of believers (hadith al-Ghadir)
  • Ali (a) for the Prophet (s) as Harun (hadith al-Manzila)
  • Ali (a), beloved of God and the Prophet (s) (hadith al-Raya)
  • Ali (a), one of the Ahl al-Bayt (a) of the Holy Prophet (s) (hadith al-Kisa')
  • All doors opening to the mosque must be closed except Ali's (a) (hadith Sadd al-Abwab)
  • Ali (a) is from the Holy Prophet (s) and the Holy Prophet (s) is from Ali (a)
  • Anyone who curses Ali (a) has cursed the Holy Prophet (s)
  • Urging people to befriend Ali (a) and prohibiting them from enmity with him
  • Hadith al-Ghadir
  • The Prophet's (s) prayer for the friends of Ali (a) and damning his enemies
  • Friendship with Ali (a) as the border between the believer and the hypocrite
  • Closeness of Ali (a) with the Holy Prophet (s)
  • Special love of the Holy Prophet (s) for Ali (a) and the Aisha's complaint
  • The Holy Prophet's (s) special love for Ali (a) and Fatima (a) and Aisha's admittance
  • Ali's (a) brother and the best of the family of the Holy Prophet (s)
  • Fatima (a), daughter of the Holy Prophet (s) and the lady of women in paradise
  • The Holy Prophet's (s) prophecy about early demise of Fatima (a)
  • Al-Hasan (a) and al-Husayn (a), masters of the youths in paradise
  • Fatima (a), lady of women of Islamic Umma
  • Fatima (a), a part of the Holy Prophet (s)
  • Ali's (a) battles based on the Holy Qur'an's commentary
  • Ali's (a) battle with Mariqun (Khawarij)

Versions, Translations and Prints

There are 12 manuscript copies of al-Nasa'i's book available in libraries of different countries and it has been many times printed in India, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon and Iran.

  • It was translated to Persian as Hada'iq ladunni dar tashrih-I daqa'iq Khasa'is Alawi by Sayyid Abu l-Qasim Radawi Lahuri in 1311/1894 and was published in Lahore.
  • It was again translated by Fath Allah Najjarzadihgan as Vizhegi-ha-yi Amir Mu'minan Ali b. Abi Talib (a) and was published in Qom in 2003.
  • In 1892, it was translated to Hindi and then to Urdu and published in Pakistan and then it was translated to some other languages as well.

Different people have researched about this book including Muhammad Kazim Mahmudi studied its different copies and published it in Qom. He found narrations of this book in other Sunni books (and also found some of them in Shia books) and added up to the authenticity of this book.

References