Acquaintance with the Kūfiyāns

Iraq has been an Islamic land that dominated over Islamic world throughout caliphate life for centuries and therein numerous important developments were embedded. With two cities of Basra and Kūfa it initially appeared under the name of “‘Arāqiyan” and later with the appearance of Baghdād it played a more important role. The time we talk about is when it is still a hundred years left to Baghdād emergence. Basra, for years after the event of Djamal, was ‘Uthmānids. [1] Although it was somewhat moderated with the Mu‘tazilites’ (schismatic) penetration later. On the other hand, Kūfa has always been known as a Shi‘ites center that did adhere to its belief during the Umayyads’s authority and later on. On different occasions this city has been “reproached” on the one hand and admired on the other, thus different judgments have been passed about the Kūfa people as follows,

A. These people on different occasions took different positions. Once they rose for defending Ahl al-Bayt and strengthened the ‘Alawites with their courage and it was their assistance that helped Imām defeat Nākithīn. Yet, it was the last years of Imām ‘Alī’s caliphate when they hesitated to help him, so the gospel. Truth was defeated and the credal error won. Though many [2], later they left Hasan Ibn ‘Alī (a) helpless on his own as well. Such a tragedy was also repeated in Muharram 61. However, many of them under the name of Tawwābīn (the Penitents) repended and in a movement were martyred. Another group allied with Mukhtār Ibn Abī ‘Ubayd to take revenge for Imām Husayn’s assassin to show their Shi‘ites stance. With not helping Zayd Ibn ‘Alī in 122 H. they proved their unfaithfulness to the ‘Alawites.

B. The why of such contradictory judgments is the existence of various political and religious groups in the city. One group was the Khāridjites,

[1] Musnad Ibn Dja‘d, vol.I, p.527. the report was denied that Qatāda in the second century heard that there be a number in Basra who claimed that they considered ‘Alī superior to ‘Uthmān. “By Allāh, no resident before you had ever believed so”, he said.
[2] These Shi‘ites Muslems were mostly political and they never believed that Imām Hasan (a) was oppointed by Allāh as an Imām.


another was somehow the Umayyads’ accomplice as the noble and the other group was the Shi‘ite Muslims, Ahl al-Bayt’s devotees from among whom the righteous were praised for their right deeds and the wicked kept on until they murdered the prophet’s son.

C. The existence of the tribes was also influential in people’s quick stance changing. They went to extremes in their tribal prejudice so irrationally that they made rash decisions on any trivial affair. Mostly in favor of the tribes were the decisions, so they threatened the Kūfiyān’s unity, exactly what the Umayyads took advantage of several times.

Here it looks essential that we get acquainted with the Iraqi’s state on the threshold of Hasan Ibn ‘Alī’s Imamate. Were these people familiarized, the next developments in Iraq would be well comprehended.

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