List of works by al-Sharif al-Murtada

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'Alī b. al-Ḥusayn b. Mūsā b. Muḥammad b. Mūsā b. Ibrāhīm b. Imām Mūsā al-Kāẓim (a) (Arabic: علي بن الحسين بن موسی بن محمد بن موسی بن ابراهيم بن الامام موسی الکاظم ع ) (known as al-Sharīf al-Murtaḍā, al-Sayyid al-Murtaḍā, and 'Alam al-Hudā) (b. 355/965 - d. 436/1044) was a Twelver Shia jurists and theologians.

He had several works in different field of Islamic studies including fiqh, hadith, theology, and etc. The most important ones are:


Main article: Al-Intisar

It is a book on fiqh, including the rulings definitely or supposedly specific to Twelver Shia. This book contains 319 fiqhi issues and is important historically and scientifically, since it is the oldest Shia reference in fiqh which includes comparative issues and has mentioned different opinions. It has also established Twelver Shia fiqh on firm proofs and later scholars in fiqh such as al-Shaykh al-Tusi, al-'Allama al-Hilli and others have followed it and have built their works in fiqh upon it. In this book, al-Sharif al-Murtada has mentioned some of his works such as Masa'il Abi 'Abd Allah b. al-Tiban, Masa'il al-khilaf, Masa'il Ahl al-Musil, Masa'il al-Tirablisiyyat and Usul al-fiqh. Al-Sayyid al-Murtada wrote al-Intisar after 420 AH.


This book contains 207 topics in fiqh and beliefs. Al-Sayyid al-Murtada wrote this book to explain, criticize and strengthen the fiqh discussions of his forefather Hasan Utrush, the author of Daylam and Tabaristan. The author of Adab al-Murtada says that, "it is famous that Hasan Utrush was Zaidi, but many Twelver Shia scholars have regarded him Twelver Shia; but, according to this very treatise, he was not Twelver Shia, since in most secondary issues and many ideological issues, he has an opinion different to Twelver Shia. This book is important since firstly spoke of the religion of al-Nasir and his invitation Daylam regions and secondly has compiled the beliefs of different sects especially Zaidi and Twelver Shia in one place. In this book, al-Sayyid al-Murtada has mentioned some of his works such as: al-Khilaf, Masa'il usul al-fiqh wa al-'Adad and Tanzih al-anbiya'.

Al-Shafi fi l-imama

Al-Shafi fi al-imama wa ibtal hujaj al-'amma is among the most important theological books compiled by al-Sayyid al-Murtada 'Alam al-Huda on Imamate and answering questions about it. Al-Sayyid al-Murtada wrote this book to answer the questions of Qadi 'Abd al-Jabbar al-Mu'tazili about Imamate. Al-Shaykh al-Tusi wrote a summary of this book called Talkhis al-shafi; Abu l-Husayn Basri rejected it in Naqd al-shafi and Abu ya'la Sallar b. 'Abd al-'Aziz rejected Basri's book in Naqd al-naqd 'ala al-naqd while al-Sayyid al-Murtada was alive. Inqadh al-bashar min al-jabr wa al-qadar

It is a small treatise on Kalam in which al-Sayyid has reviewed the issue of divine decree and ordinance using an eloquent speech style and mentioned many verses from the Qur'an for his argument. He also reviewed the history of this issue since the time of Ma'bad al-Juhani and Abu al-Aswad al-Du'ali until his time.

Al-Muhkam wa al-mutashabih

In this treatise issues such as abrogating and abrogated, the obvious and the ambiguous, the general from which some cases are made specified, distortion in reading, the difference between total and partial abandoning have been discussed. Bibliographers have attributed this treatise to al-Sayyid al-Murtada, but the first page of the treatise clarifies that all of this treatise has been quoted from the commentary of Muhammad b. Ibrahim b. Hafs al-Nu'mani who lived before al-Sayyid al-Murtada; therefore, there would be no reason for attributing the treatise to al-Sayyid except that he abrogated the treatise.

Tanzih al-anbiya'

Tanzih al-Anbiya' is a theological book written by al-Sayyid al-Murtada to prove the infallibility of the prophets (a) and Imams (a). In this book, al-Sayyid al-Murtada has comprehensively discussed the infallibility of the prophets (a), but about the infallibility of Imams (a), he has referred to his al-Shafi fi al-Imama. The book is organized in form of question and answer. Although Tanzih al-anbiya discusses an ideological issue, due to its syntactical, lexical and rhetorical discussions, it shall also be classified among the literary books.

Al-Usul al-i'tiqadiya

This is a short treatise about divine attributes, the prophethood, Choosing the prophets, promise and punishment, intercession, suffering in the grave, destruction of the world, scale, path, paradise and hell.

Al-Wilaya 'an al-ja'ir or al-wilaya min qibal al-zalimin

It is a small treatise which al-Sayyid wrote in 415 AH for the minister, Abu l-Qasim Husayn b. Ali al-Maghribi. This treatise is about the ruling of Wilaya for tyrant caliphs which has been discussed and questioned by Twlever Shia. In this treatise, al-Sayyid has explained what a governor is permitted and not permitted to do on behalf of the tyrant.

Al-Muqna' fi al-ghayba

In this treatise, al-Sayyid has answered the question of the occultation of the Twelfth Imam (a) about which Twelver Shia have always been attacked for, have defended and have written many treatises.

Al-Masa'il al-Rassiyya al-'ula

It is a hand-written treatise containing al-Sayyid's answer to 28 questions raised by Abu al-Husayn al-Muhsin b. Muhammad b. al-Nasir al-Husayni al-Rassi. The questioner, as described by Ibn Idris and his questions show, has been an astute scholar, an intuitive faqih, compelling the opponent and a debater no one like al-Sayyid could win against his debates. Al-Sayyid al-Murtada himself acknowledged and praised him. This treatise contains issues on fiqh and Kalam and therein, al-Sayyid has referred the answer of some of the questions to his Masa'il fi usul al-fiqh wa al-masa'il al-matlabiyyat. Al-Sayyid wrote this treatise in 428 AH and it is very important since it includes his latest views in fiqh and Kalam.

Al-Masa'il al-Rassiyya al-thaniya

This treatise was meant to answer the questions of Abu l-Husayn al-Muhsin b. Muhammad b. al-Nasir al-Husayni al-Rassi which was received by al-Sayyid after the above-mentioned treatise, so he added it to it. This treatise discusses five topics. The first issue is in fiqh and the rest are in fiqh and Kalam. This treatise is among the latest works of al-Sayyid and thus demonstrated his final opinions and views.

Mas'ala fi al-I'tirad 'ala man yuthbit qidam al-'ajsam

In this treatise, al-Sayyid has referred to his al-Mulakhkhas fi al-'usul. This treatise is mere philosophical in nature.

Ibtal al-'amal bi khabar al-'ahad

Agha Buzurg transcribed this treatise from the handwritten copy of Shaykh Shahid who transcribed it from his grandfather's handwritten copy of the original manuscript of al-Sharif al-Murtada. The author of Adab al-Murtada says, "I have a copy which has two pages in which Sayyid has referred to al-Masa'il al-halabiyyat wa al-masa'il al-tabaniyyat. In this treatise, some transmitters of hadiths such as Tatari, Ibn Sama'a and others among Ghulat, Mujassima, Khattabiya, Mushabbiha and Mujbira have been criticized.

Muqaddama fi al-'usul

It briefly discusses about Twelver Shia beliefs: Unity, justice, divine promise and punishment and some Mu'tazili views.

Fi ma yatawalla ghusl al-Imam

It is a small treatise in one page about this belief that an Imam would not be ritually bathed by anyone other than anther Imam. Al-Sayyid al-Murtada regarded this belief incorrect, and even considered it impossible. In this treatise, the issue has been referred to al-Dhakhira.

Al-'Adad or al-Radd 'ala ashab al-'adad

In this treatise, al-Sayyid has rejected this opinion that fasting can be accomplished by the number (30 days) and has declared moon-sight as the criteria for accomplishment of fasting.

Mas'ala wajiza fi al-ghayba

This treatise has been written about the problem of the Occultation of the Awaited Imam (a). There is no difference between the arguments al-Sayyid has brought here and those mentioned in al-Muqna' fi l-ghayba.

Al-Masa'il al-Tabbaniyiat

It includes the questions Abu 'Abd Allah Muhammad b. 'Abd al-Malik al-Tabbani asked al-Sayyid; and it is seen in the questions that Abu 'Abd Allah has been a knowledgeable theologian and even more knowledgeable than others who asked al-Sayyid questions. He has asked, "why Twelver Shia have rejected Ijma' (consensus) and Qiyas (analogical deduction)?"; "why al-Sayyid himself does not consider Khabar al-Wahid (solitary report) a proof whereas by abandoning the report, the base of religious rulings would be lost?"

Diwan al-Murtada

The number of poems of Sayyid al-Murtada, as some historians say, reaches 20 thousand and through the books of Tarajim, it can be understood that in some ages, different authors have accessed certain versions of it.

Sharh Qasida al-Sayyid al-Humayri

The mentioned Qasida (ode) has been composed in eulogy of Imam Ali b. Abi Talib (a). In this commentary, Sayyid has spoken about the conduct and virtues of Imam Ali (a) and has explained the wording of the ode and also mentioned some literary and historical events alongside the explanation. Sayyid wrote this commentary for his son.

Al-Ghurar wa al-durar (Amali al-Murtada)

Al-Amali al-Murtada is a book on the commentary of Clear and Ambiguous verses and explaining the hadiths difficult to understand. This book has also been called al-Amali fi al-tafsir, Al-Ghurar wa al-durar, Gurar al-fawa'id wa al-durar al-qala'id, al-Tafsir, Majalis al-ta'wilat and Majalis kashf al-ayat. According to AbuyAli Ja'fari, the faqih contemporary with al-Sayyid al-Murtada and his student, Sayyid finished this book in Jumada I 413 AH.

Al-Dhari'a ila usul al-shari'a

This book has been written about Twelver Shia principles of fiqh in 14 chapters, each of which has some sections and most important topics included are, address, command and prohibition, the general and the specific, the absolute and specified, the concise and the clear, abrogation, action, consensus, analogical deduction, Ijtihad, emulation, avoidance and allowance, the disagreeing and the recommended. This book is important from two aspects, first is that it is the first complete book in Twelver Shia principles of Fiqh.

In this book, even though Sayyid has only mentioned the opinions of Sunni scholars such as Abu Hanifa, Shafi'i and Juba'is including Abu 'Ali, Abu Hashim, Abu al-Hasan Basri and Nazzam, Abu al-'Abbas b. Shurayh, Abu Bakr Farsi, Qifal, Abu al-Qasim Balkhi and as such, but since he has expressed a reliable and firm opinion in every issue of Usul, the book can be considered the beginning of the independence of the discipline of Shia Usul.

Secondly, from this aspect that as al-Sayyid al-Murtada says in the introduction of the book, he has separated the issues of the principle of fiqh from the principles of religion while in the books written before this book, the issues of the scholars of Usul were mixed together. In this book, in every issue, Sayyid has mentioned the views of different scholars and comprehensively reviewed their arguments and then has criticized them and finally has proved his opinion supporting it by sufficient research, while in some cases, he has considered others' opinions correct and has approved of their arguments.