Muhammad al-Baqir

Muhammad al-Baqir

Overview
Muḥammad ibn ‘Alī al-Bāqir (676-733 AD or 1 Rajab
Rajab
Rajab is the seventh month of the Islamic calendar. The lexical definition of Rajaba is "to respect", of which Rajab is a derivative.This month is regarded as one of the four sacred months in Islam in which battles are prohibited...

 57 AH – 7 Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Ḥijjah is the twelfth and final month in the Islamic calendar.This is a very sacred month in the Islamic calendar, marking the end of the year. It is in this month in which the Hajj takes place....

 114 AH) was the Fifth Imām
Imamah (Shi'a doctrine)
Imāmah is the Shia doctrine of religious, spiritual and political leadership of the Ummah. The Shīa believe that the A'immah are the true Caliphs or rightful successors of Muḥammad, and further that Imams are possessed of divine knowledge and authority as well as being part of the Ahl al-Bayt,...

 to the Twelver Shi‘a and Fourth Imām
Imamah (Shi'a Ismaili doctrine)
The Ismaili view on the Imamah differs from the Twelver Shi'a view, in particular because the Imam in Ismailism is the Noor of God . Ismailis believe that the Noor of God is present in the Imam, and that there is only a Ẓāhirī difference between each one...

 to the Ismā‘īlī Shī‘a. His father was the previous Imām, ‘Alī ibn Ḥusayn, and his mother was Fatimah bint al-Hasan
Fatimah bint al-Hasan
Fātimah bint al-Hasan ibn ‘Alī was a daughter of Hasan ibn ‘Alī, wife of ‘Alī ibn Husayn , and mother of Muhammad al-Bāqir . Her kunya was Umm ‘Abd Allāh and she was referred to as, "as-Siddīqa" by ‘Alī ibn Husayn...

. He is revered by Shi'a Muslims for his religious leadership and highly respected by Sunni Muslims for his knowledge and Islamic scholarship as a leading jurist of Madinah, the City of the Prophet.



Muhammad al-Baqir was born on the 1st of the month of Rajab, 57th Hijra, in the city of Medina.

Because of his resemblance to his great-grandfather
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

 he was named Muhammad, because of it that he analyzed the knowledge and made manifest its secrets he became known with the title of al-Baqir.

He was the first Imam whose lineage ascended and reached the Islamic prophet Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

 both from the paternal and maternal sides.

His life history can be divided into two parts:
  • the period before his Imamate, led in Medina, that is nearly 35 years and was the peaceful part of his life

  • the Period of Imamate, which stretched up to 20 years and is counted as the duration of his propagation and dissemination of Islamic knowledge and wisdom.


Shia historians allege a hadith, that one of the companions of Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

, Jabir ibn Abd-Allah
Jabir ibn Abd-Allah
Jabir ibn 'Abdullah ibn 'Amr ibn Haram al-Ansari was a prominent companion of Muhammad and his descendants, the Shi'a Imams.-Early life:Jabir ibn Abdullah al-Ansari was born in Yathrib 15 years before the Hijra. He belonged to a poor family of Yathrib. He was from the tribe of Khazraj. His mother...

 Ansari was in the presence of Muhammad.
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Quotations

Take the good speech from whoever said it even if his practice was not accordingly.

Majlisi, Bihārul Anwār, vol.75, p.170

The parable of a man greedy of this world is the parable of the silk worm: the more it winds the thread round itself the farther it becomes from salvation, until it dies of grief.

Muhammad Kulayni, Usūl al-Kāfī - Book of Faith and Infidelity, vol.3, p.202 & vol.2, p.316

Being sociable and affable with people brings kindness and friendship.

Ibn Shu’ba al-Harrani, Tuhaf al-'Uqul, p.306

There is no strength higher than overcoming carnal desire.

Majlisi, Bihārul Anwār, vol.75, p.165

There is no pain worse than ignorance and lack of intellegence.

Ibn Shu’ba al-Harrani, Tuhaf al-'Uqul, p.165

Opposition of one's desires is the sign of the highest level of wisdom in a human being.

Majlisi, Bihārul Anwār, vol.78, p.164

On the Day of Judgement, God will interrogate people according to the wisdom he has granted them.

Majlisi, Bihārul Anwār, vol.1, p.106

Knowledge and science is the fruit of paradise; in times of threat it is one's ally, in exile it keeps one company, and in solitude it is one's intimate friend and companion.

Majlisi, Bihārul Anwār, vol.78, p.55

The person who teaches one chapter of guidance to the people will have a reward similar to all those who would act upon it, and nothing would be lessened or subtracted from the reward of those who practise it; and the one who teaches a chapter of misguidance, he will have the burden (wrath) similar to each one who acts upon it, and nothing will be lessened from their burden of sin (wrath of Allah).

Ibn Shu’ba al-Harrani, Tuhaf al-'Uqul, p.297

Consider the world as an abode where in you have dropped down for an hour, then you have got to leave it and go ahead; or (suppose it is) like the wealth which you lay hands upon in a dream and become over-joyed and glad. Then you wake up to find yourself empty handed.

Ibn Shu’ba al-Harrani, Tuhaf al-'Uqul, p.287
Encyclopedia
Muḥammad ibn ‘Alī al-Bāqir (676-733 AD or 1 Rajab
Rajab
Rajab is the seventh month of the Islamic calendar. The lexical definition of Rajaba is "to respect", of which Rajab is a derivative.This month is regarded as one of the four sacred months in Islam in which battles are prohibited...

 57 AH – 7 Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Ḥijjah is the twelfth and final month in the Islamic calendar.This is a very sacred month in the Islamic calendar, marking the end of the year. It is in this month in which the Hajj takes place....

 114 AH) was the Fifth Imām
Imamah (Shi'a doctrine)
Imāmah is the Shia doctrine of religious, spiritual and political leadership of the Ummah. The Shīa believe that the A'immah are the true Caliphs or rightful successors of Muḥammad, and further that Imams are possessed of divine knowledge and authority as well as being part of the Ahl al-Bayt,...

 to the Twelver Shi‘a and Fourth Imām
Imamah (Shi'a Ismaili doctrine)
The Ismaili view on the Imamah differs from the Twelver Shi'a view, in particular because the Imam in Ismailism is the Noor of God . Ismailis believe that the Noor of God is present in the Imam, and that there is only a Ẓāhirī difference between each one...

 to the Ismā‘īlī Shī‘a. His father was the previous Imām, ‘Alī ibn Ḥusayn, and his mother was Fatimah bint al-Hasan
Fatimah bint al-Hasan
Fātimah bint al-Hasan ibn ‘Alī was a daughter of Hasan ibn ‘Alī, wife of ‘Alī ibn Husayn , and mother of Muhammad al-Bāqir . Her kunya was Umm ‘Abd Allāh and she was referred to as, "as-Siddīqa" by ‘Alī ibn Husayn...

. He is revered by Shi'a Muslims for his religious leadership and highly respected by Sunni Muslims for his knowledge and Islamic scholarship as a leading jurist of Madinah, the City of the Prophet.

Birth



Muhammad al-Baqir was born on the 1st of the month of Rajab, 57th Hijra, in the city of Medina.

Because of his resemblance to his great-grandfather
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

 he was named Muhammad, because of it that he analyzed the knowledge and made manifest its secrets he became known with the title of al-Baqir.

He was the first Imam whose lineage ascended and reached the Islamic prophet Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

 both from the paternal and maternal sides.

His life history can be divided into two parts:
  • the period before his Imamate, led in Medina, that is nearly 35 years and was the peaceful part of his life

  • the Period of Imamate, which stretched up to 20 years and is counted as the duration of his propagation and dissemination of Islamic knowledge and wisdom.

Prophecy of Birth


Shia historians allege a hadith, that one of the companions of Muhammad
Muhammad
Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

, Jabir ibn Abd-Allah
Jabir ibn Abd-Allah
Jabir ibn 'Abdullah ibn 'Amr ibn Haram al-Ansari was a prominent companion of Muhammad and his descendants, the Shi'a Imams.-Early life:Jabir ibn Abdullah al-Ansari was born in Yathrib 15 years before the Hijra. He belonged to a poor family of Yathrib. He was from the tribe of Khazraj. His mother...

 Ansari was in the presence of Muhammad. He asked Muhammad about the names of descendants from his daughter Hazrat Fatimah
Fatimah
Fatimah was a daughter of the Islamic prophet Muhammad from his first wife Khadijah bint Khuwaylid. She is regarded by Muslims as an exemplar for men and women. She remained at her father's side through the difficulties suffered by him at the hands of the Quraysh of Mecca...

 and Ali
Ali
' |Ramaḍān]], 40 AH; approximately October 23, 598 or 600 or March 17, 599 – January 27, 661).His father's name was Abu Talib. Ali was also the cousin and son-in-law of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, and ruled over the Islamic Caliphate from 656 to 661, and was the first male convert to Islam...

. Muhammad told him,

“O Jabir, you will have a long life, and although you will go blind, but you will meet the 5th in line of my descendants whose name will be my name, who will walk like me and who will be the 5th Imam of the time. When you will meet him, give my salaams (peeace greetings) to him”.

As predicted by Muhammad Jabir ibn Abd-Allah
Jabir ibn Abd-Allah
Jabir ibn 'Abdullah ibn 'Amr ibn Haram al-Ansari was a prominent companion of Muhammad and his descendants, the Shi'a Imams.-Early life:Jabir ibn Abdullah al-Ansari was born in Yathrib 15 years before the Hijra. He belonged to a poor family of Yathrib. He was from the tribe of Khazraj. His mother...

 Ansari had a long life and became blind in his old age. But he devoutly waited for the time when he would meet the 5th Imam. Each morning he would come out from his house, sit by the road side and wait for the sound of the footsteps to recognise the 5th Imam. One such day while he was waiting in the street of Madina, he heard someone walking towards him, the sound of footsteps reminded him of the way Muhammad used to walk. Jabir stood up, stopped the man and asked his name. He replied,”Muhammad”, Jabir asked, whose son?, he replied “Ali ibn Hussain”. Jabir immediately recognised the man he was talking to was the 5th Imam. He embraced him and told him the message from Muhammad and that Muhammad sent his greetings to him. Imam took him to his home, asked his friends to gather as many people as they can. When they all assembled in his house, the Imam asked Jabir to tell the whole story again. Jabir narrated the story to the companions, they all attested in unison of the Imamat of the Fifth Imam and also the names of the other Seven Imams in his line up to the Twelfth Imam.

Expertise


Imam Muhammed al-Baqir was awarded the title Baqir al-'Ulum "Revealer of Knowledge" because of his ample religious and judicial knowledge and his enthusiasm to teach others. Imam Muhammad al-Baqir’s son, Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq, was his student and benefited from his knowledge. He founded the precursor of Shī‘ah jurisprudence. Many historians like Yakubi asserts that the Imam split open knowledge, that He scrutinized it and examined the depths of it so that it can be spread to all people truly and correctly. In his life of respectable and scholarly retirement at Madina, the Imam was frequently called upon to explain particular teachings in regard to Imamat. A synopsis of his teaching in the Ma’athirul-Baqir is given in Cannon Sell’s Ithna Ashariya, an interesting part of which may well be quoted, as it shows the emphasis at this early period on the intellectual and spiritual character of the Imamat.

While in Medinah Imam Muhammed al-Baqir continued with the progress of the schools of theology opened up on his advice and with the support of the companions of Ahlulbayt. It is noted by many historians that until the death of The 5th Imam there were 25000 students in these schools learning Fiqh, Theology and Islamic science. It was at this time that 400 books of Hadith were compiled by the students of these school under the guidance of Imam Muhammed al-Baqir.

During the Umayyad rulers


Despite his aversion to politics, the Umayyad rulers harassed Muhammad al-Baqir for fear of his popularity and influence. The actions of his brother
Zayd ibn Ali
Zayd ibn ‘Alī was the grandson of Husayn ibn Alī, the grandson of Muhammad. Zayd was born in Medina in 695. His father was the Shī‘ah Imam ‘Alī ibn Husayn "Zayn al-Abidīn"...

 and other kinsmen made them distrust him.

Martyrdom


Muhammad al-Baqir was poisoned by the order of Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik
Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik
Hisham ibn Abd al-Malik 10th Umayyad caliph who ruled from 723 until his death in 743. When he was born in 691 his mother named him after her father....

 on 7 Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Ḥijjah is the twelfth and final month in the Islamic calendar.This is a very sacred month in the Islamic calendar, marking the end of the year. It is in this month in which the Hajj takes place....

 114 at the age of 57 years. His body was buried beside the graves of other Imams in the graveyard of Jannatul Baqee'.

The more the Ummayad Government learnt about The Imam’s prestige and popularity, the more intolerable his existence became. At last they resorted to the same soundless weapon, poison which used to be applied by the cunning monarchs quite often to eliminate their opponents or suspects. A saddle was presented to the Imam in which poison was applied most skilfully. When he mounted on it the poison effected his whole body. After few days in pain the Imam expired on 7th of Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Hijjah
Dhu al-Ḥijjah is the twelfth and final month in the Islamic calendar.This is a very sacred month in the Islamic calendar, marking the end of the year. It is in this month in which the Hajj takes place....

 114 Hijri.

According to his Will he was shrouded in three pieces of cloth. These included a Yamani sheet which he used to put on Friday prayers and a shirt which he always wore. He was laid to rest underneath the same dome in Jannatul Baqee where Imam Hasan ibn Ali
Hasan ibn Ali
Al-Hasan ibn ‘Alī ibn Abī Tālib ‎ is an important figure in Islam, the son of Fatimah the daughter of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, and of the fourth Caliph Ali ibn Abi Talib. Hasan is a member of the Ahl al-Bayt and Ahl al-Kisa...

 and Imam Zayn al-Abidin were buried.

Some Sayings of the Imam


"Our followers are of three kinds, one who follows us but depends on others, one who is like a glass involved in his own reflections, but the best are those who are like gold, the more they suffer the more they shine".

”I admonish you regarding five things; if you are wronged, do not commit wrong doing to others, if you are betrayed, do not betray anyone, if you are called a liar, do not be furious, if you are praised, do not be jubilant, if you are criticised do not fret and think of what is said in criticism, if you find in yourself what is criticised about you, then you are falling down in the eyes of God; when you are furious about the truth, it is much greater calamity then your falling down in the eyes of the people. And if you are opposite of what is said (in criticism) about you, then it is a merit you acquired without having to tire yourself in obtaining it”.

Timeline


External links

  • AL-BAQER by Wilferd Madelung
    Wilferd Madelung
    Wilferd Ferdinand Madelung is a scholar of Islam. He was born in Stuttgart, Germany, where he completed his early education at Eberhard-Ludwigs-Gymnasium....

    , an article in Encyclopædia Iranica
  • The Fifth Imam