Narration of Superiority [Textual Samples]

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The narration of superiority was related by many individuals, most of them heard `Ali ibn abi Talib (ra) in his famous Khutbah or sermon in Kufa, this text is the strongest of all. Other narrators heard `Ali ibn abi Talib (ra) repeat this statement at different occasions, maybe other sermons or personal conversations they had with him.

We have gathered more than 110 chains in our short research, we will translate some of the texts just for the benefit of the readers. The chains of narrators will be removed to reduce the size and make texts easier to read.

In the name of God we begin,

1)

[…`Ali (ra) said: “O aba Juhayfah, should I tell you about the best of this nation after its Prophet (saws)?” I said: “Yes” and I didn’t see that anyone was better than him, he (ra) said: The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) is Abu Bakr, and after Abu Bakr is `Umar may Allah be pleased with him, and after them is another third one that he did not name.]

2)

[…My father was from the Shurtah of `Ali (ra) (`Ali’s chosen military division, known as Shurtat-ul-Khamees) and he was under the Mimbar, so he told me that he climbed on the Mimbar -meaning `Ali- and he thanked Allah and praised him, then sent peace upon the Prophet (saws) and said: “The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) is Abu Bakr, and the second is `Umar may Allah be pleased with him, then Allah places the goodness where he pleases.]

3)

[…I heard `Ali (ra) say: “The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) are Abu Bakr and `Umar may Allah be pleased with both of them, and if I had wanted I would have told you of the third.”]

4)

[…I heard `Ali (ra) say on the Mimbar: Should I tell you of the best of this nation after its Prophet (saws)? and he mentioned Abu Bakr, then he said: Should I tell you about the second? and he mentioned `Umar, then he said: “If I wished I would tell you of the third.” then he was silent so we thought that he meant himself. I said: “Did you hear him say this?” he said: “Yes by the Lord of the Ka`bah, may both my ears be deaf otherwise.”]

5)

[…`Ali stood up and said: “The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) are Abu Bakr and `Umar, then we did things after them that only Allah most high can judge as he wishes.”]

6)

[…`Ali (ra) said after he finished from the people of Basarah: “The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) is Abu Bakr and after Abu Bakr is `Umar, and we did things afterwards that Allah will deal with as he wants.”]

7)

[…`Alqamah bin Qays slammed his hand on this Mimbar and said: `Ali (ra) addressed us in a sermon on this Mimbar, so he thanked Allah and praised him, and mentioned what Allah willed for him to mention, then said: “The best of people after the messenger of Allah (saws) was Abu Bakr then `Umar may Allah be pleased with both, then we did things after them that Allah will judge.”]

8)

[…I passed by a few from the Shee`ah while they were criticizing Abu Bakr and `Umar may Allah be pleased with them, so I entered on `Ali ibn abi Talib and said: “O Ameer al-Mu’mineen, I passed by some of your companions mentioning Abu Bakr and `Umar in an unfitting way, if they did not believe that you shared their opinion they would not have dared to do it, `Ali said: “I seek refuge in Allah, the best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) are Abu Bakr and `Umar may Allah be pleased with both, then Allah knows best where the goodness is, I say this and ask Allah for forgiveness for me and you.”]

9)

[…We heard `Ali ibn abi Talib saying on the Mimbar: “The best of the slaves of Allah after the Prophet (saws) is Abu Bakr al-Siddeeq, his companion in the cave, then after Abu Bakr comes `Umar, and the third, if I wished, I would name his father and mother.”]

10)

[…When `Ali used to climb the Mimbar he would say: “O people, if I tell you ALLAH SAID, or HIS PROPHET SAID, or IT IS IN THE BOOK OF ALLAH, then hold on to what I say. By Allah, if I fell from the sky and got eaten by the birds or got blown by the wind to where it is far and deep, is more beloved to me than to lie against Allah, his prophet and his book. As for what I tell you from my own self, then come and consult me about it. The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) is Abu Bakr, then after Abu Bakr is `Umar, and the third if I wished to name him I would have done so.” Then he continued the sermon.]

11)

[…I heard `Ali say: “Allah took the soul of his Prophet (saws) while being the best that a prophet can be.” He praised him and said: “After that, Abu Bakr received successor-ship, so he followed the way and example of the Prophet (saws), then Allah took his soul while being the best anyone can be, so he was the best of this nation after its Prophet (saws). After that, `Umar received successor-ship, so he followed their way and example, then Allah took his soul while being the best that anyone can be, so he was the best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) and Abu Bakr.”]

12)

[…from `Ali that he said: “I know the best from among this nation after its Prophet (saws), Abu Bakr and `Umar, and if I wished to name the third I would have.”]

13)

[…I told `Ali ibn abi Talib: “Who is the best of this nation after its Prophet (saws)?” He replied: “SubhanAllah O son!? Abu Bakr.” I asked: “Then who?” He replied: “SubhanAllah O son!? `Umar.” I feared that he would add another so I said: “Then you O Ameer al-Mu’mineen?” He replied: “No, not me, then I am after a man from the Muslims.”]

14)

[…I said to my father: “O father, who is the best of the people after the messenger of Allah (saws)?” He said: “Abu Bakr.” I said: “Then who?” He said: “Do you not know?” I said:”No.” He said: `Umar.” Then I got hasty because of young age, so I said: “Then you O father?” so he said: “O son, your father is but a man from the Muslims, his right is their right and his duty is their duty.”]

15)

[…A man came to `Ali and said: “You are the best of people.”, so he said: “Have you seen the Prophet (saws)?” he said: “No.” He said: “Have you seen Abu Bakr?” he said: “No.” he said: “Have you seen `Umar?” he said: “No.” he said: “If you had said that you met the Prophet (saws) I would have killed you, and if you had met Abu Bakr and `Umar I would have whipped you.”]

16)

[…I was sitting next to the Mimbar of `Ali ibn abi Talib while he was delivering a sermon so I heard him say: “The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) is Abu Bakr, then `Umar.” so I rapidly asked: “Then you O Ameer al-Mu’mineen are the third?” He said: “No, and not the fourth.”]

17)

[…`Ali ibn abi Talib said: “The Prophet (saws) never passed away until we knew that the best of us after him is Abu Bakr, and the Prophet (saws) never passed away until we knew that the best of us after Abu Bakr is `Umar, and the Prophet (saws) never passed away until we knew that the best of us after `Umar is another man, he never named him.”]

18)

[…We were in the mosque when a man came and belittled Abu Bakr and `Umar then insulted `Uthman, so I entered on `Ali ibn abi Talib and said: “O Ameer al-Mu’mineen, there is a man in the mosque who belittled Abu Bakr and `Umar then insulted `Uthman.” So he said: “Bring him to me!” And when he was brought he said: “Who testifies against him?” So I and those who were with me all testified, so he ordered that he be stepped on then said: “Take this one to the markets so that the people might see him and recognize him. Then take him away as he must not live near me.” `Ali stood up and we stood with him and he climbed on the Mimbar and praised Allah and thanked him and said: “The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) are Abu Bakr and `Umar and if I wished to name the third I would name him.”]

19)

[…A man told Shareek something regarding `Ali ibn abi Talib (ra), so he said: You Ignorant! We learned that `Ali (ra) suddenly climbed on the Mimbar, and by Allah we never asked him, he himself told us: “Do you know who the best of this nation is after its Prophet (saws)?” We remained silent, so he said: “Abu Bakr then `Umar.” You ignorant, would you have wished for us to stand up to him saying: “You Lie!?”]

20)

[…I witnessed with `Ali ibn abi Talib the battles of Jamal and Siffeen and I had heard `Ali say: “The best of this nation after its Prophet (saws) is Abu Bakr then `Umar.”]

21)

[…`Ali ibn abi Talib gave us a sermon on this Mimbar, he mentioned what Allah willed for him to mention, then said: “It had reached me that some people prefer me over Abu Bakr and `Umar, if I had clarified this matter previously I would have punished them, but I hate the punishment before the warning. After this moment in which I stand before you, whosoever shall be brought to me, claiming anything of the sort, then he is a slanderer, his punishment is that of a slanderer.” Then he said: “The best of people after the messenger of Allah (saws) is Abu Bakr then `Umar. Love not thy friend extremely, as one day they might be your worst enemy, and loathe not thy enemy with extremism, as one day he might be your loved one.”]

22)

[…`Ali said: “The best that the Prophet (saws) left behind him is Abu Bakr, then `Umar, and I learned of the rank of the third.”]

And other similar texts but hopefully these are enough for the reader to understand and comprehend the matter as best as can be.

wal-Salamu `Aleykum,

2 Comments

  1. Salam-O-Walikum…

    Brothers who looking after on this website i ask to reward you for this great effort. Regarding the article mention above it is very informative but if you mention the reference of books from where you quote these narrations it help us to refute shia believe regarding clashes between khulafa 3 r.a & ali r.a shia.

    • al-Salamu `Aleykum,

      Dear brother the sources are mentioned in the PDF file, it is found in many of our books, I just listed SOME of the books in my research so as to avoid repetition, but if you must source it simply say:
      Musnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal.

      That would be sufficient, if they ask for a scan or page number or whatnot, that is only a waste of time, they do this to waste your time so don’t bother with them. The vast majority of them don’t know Arabic nor do they own the books.

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