Brief Commentary On Hadeeth Al-Kisaa (Tradition of the Cloak)

Brief Commentary On Hadeeth Al-Kisaa (Tradition of the Cloak)0%

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Brief Commentary On Hadeeth Al-Kisaa (Tradition of the Cloak)

Brief Commentary On Hadeeth Al-Kisaa (Tradition of the Cloak)

Author:
Publisher: www.al-islam.org
English

Brief Commentary On Hadeeth Al-Kisaa (Tradition of the Cloak)

This text presents a brief commentary for the valuable and well-known Hadith Al Kisaa’ that is commonly narrated by all schools of thought. The author, Jerrmein Abu Shahba, attempts to analyze each event and statement in this authentic tradition in order to extract the obvious and latent meanings and better appreciate its significance which marked the revelation of the Purification Verse (Ayat At-Tatheer) in honor of the purified AhlulBayt of the Holy Prophet (SA).

Author(s):

Jerrmein Abu Shahba

Table of Contents


Introduction. 3


Authenticity Of Tradition. 4


Sources 4


Testimonials 4


Jabir Ibn Abdullah Al Ansari - The 1st Narrator 6


Lady Fatima Al Zahra - The 2nd Narrator 8


Exchange of Greetings 9


Physical Discomfort 11


Station of The Yememite Cloak. 13


Radiance Of The Holy Prophet 15


Etiquettes Of The Ahlulbayt 17


Pleasant Fragrance of The Holy Prophet 19


Imam Hasan - Director of the Prophet’s Pond  21


The Divinely Chosen One 24


Imam Husain -Intercessor of The Nation  26


Imam Ali - Commander of The Faithful 28


Imam Ali - Successor And Flag Bearer Of The Prophet 31


Role Of Brotherhood. 31


Role of Wasi (Guardian) and Caliph (Vicegerent) 32


Role of Standard-Bearer 34


Lady Fatima-Flesh Of The Holy Prophet 35


Members of The Cloak Completed. 38


Superior Position of The Ahlulbayt 40


Relationship Between Prophet And His Household  43


Prophetic Prayers Raised. 46


Prayer For Thorough Purification. 50


The Divine Declaration. 52


Hadith 1. 55


Hadith 2. 55


Hadith 3. 55


Divine Identification of The Members of The Cloak  57


Archangel Jibrael Seeks Proximity. 61


Archangel Jibrael Delivers The Message 63


Revelation of The Purification Verse 67


Imam Ali Seeks Explanation. 69


Spiritual Rewards of The Tradition of The Cloak  71


The Cry of Victory. 76


Wordly Rewards of The Tradition of The Cloak  78


Conclusion. 81


Full Arabic Text of Hadith Al Kisaa. 83


References 86


Introduction

Bismillah Ar-Rahman Ar-Raheem

TheTradition of the Cloak (Hadeeth Al Kisaa) is an authentic and frequently narrated (Mutawatir) tradition that has been cited by recognized Islamic sources in the major schools of thoughts in Islam in the books of exegesis, tradition, and history. The Tradition of the Cloak is further validated by its agreement and consistency with the Holy Qur’an and its teachings, direction, and essence.

No one can deny or doubt that this great tradition came to us from the Holy Prophet (SA) in honor of his purified Household (AhlulBayt). There are slight variations in the way that this tradition is relayed; however, the core of the tradition in its meaning and essence is the same. The significance behind this event points to the fact that the Prophet (SA) intended to apply the verse of Purification (Ayat Al Tat-heer) on these holy personalities under the cloak, as he aimed to confirm that they are the ones meant and intended in the holy verse and not anyone else.

Some of us hear this tradition being recited in gatherings at the mosque or at the commencement of Islamic programs. But do we all recognize and fully understand the obvious and latent meanings behind the details of this of this great event? We take this opportunity to begin in the name of Allah (SWT) in an attempt to shed the spotlight on this beautiful narration with the hope of extracting some jewels of lessons for our benefit and the benefit of our fellow believers.


Authenticity Of Tradition

Before we delve in the analysis of this narration, let us first survey the Islamic books to gain or increase our level of confidence regarding the authenticity ofHadeeth Al Kisaa . As mentioned, both schools of thought in Islam have related theTradition of the Cloak in the major books of narration. There are countless sources and references to support that; however for the sake of brevity, we will only cite a handful of examples to demonstrate the recurrence of this tradition.

Sources

Minhaaj Al Sunnah - Volume 3, page 3; Sahih Tirmidhi - Volume 5, page 351, Hadeeth # 3105; Hakim Al Nisapouri (Mustadrak Al Sahihain) - Volume 3, page 146); Sahih Muslim - Volume 4, page 1883, Hadeeth # 2424; Masnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal - Volume 6, page 292

The Tradition of the Cloak has been narrated by various individuals and examples of the sources for each of these narrators are:

Narrator: Ibn Abbas

Ahmad ibn Hanbal (Al Masnad) - Volume 1, page 331; Ibn Abi ‘Asem (Al Sunnah) - Volume 2, page 602, Hadeeth 1351; Al Nisaai (Al Sunan Al Kubra) - Volume 5, page 112, Hadeeth 8409; Al Tabrani (Mu’jam Al Kabir) - Volume 12, page 77, Hadeeth # 12593; Al Hakim (Al Mustadrak) - Volume 3, page 133

Narrator: A’yesha bint Abi Bakr

Ibn Abi Shayba (Al Mussanaf) - Volume 6, page 373, Hadeeth # 32093; Muslim (Al Jame’a Al Sahih) - Volume 2, page 283, Hadeeth 2424; Al Hakim (Al Mustadrak) - Volume 3, page 147

Narrator: Abu Sa’eed Al Khidr

Ibn A’saker (Tarikh) - Volume 14, page 146, Hadeeth # 3459; Ibn Jareer Al Tabari (Jame’a Al Bayaan) - Volume 22, page 9, Hadeeth # 21727

Narrator: Umm Salama

Abu Al Shaykh (Tabaqaat Al Muhaditheen) - Volume 4, page 149, Hadeeth # 915; Al Khatib (Al Mutafaq Wal Muftaraq) - Volume 2, page 11588, Hadeeth # 723; Ibn A’saker (Tarikh) - Volume 42, page 136, Hadeeth # 8518

Abdullah ibn Ja'far Al Tayyar

Abu Bakr Al Bazaar (Al Masnad) - Volume 6, page 210, Hadeeth # 2251; Abu Abdullah Al Hakim (Al Mustadrak) - Volume 3, page 148, Hadeeth # 4709

Narrator: Anas ibn Malik

Ibn Hanbal (Al Masnad) - Volume 3, page 259, 285; Tirmidhi (Al Jame’a Al Sahih) - Volume 5, page 142, Hadeeth # 3217; Tabari (Jame’a Al Bayan) - Volume 22, page 5

Testimonials

Allamah Al Azizi:“The term ‘AhlulBayt’ refers to Ali, Fatima Al Zahra, and their progeny”. Source: Al Seraj Al Muneer Volume 1, page 46

Fakhr Al Razi:“There is no doubt that Fatima, Ali, Hasan, and Husain had a special relationship with the Prophet (SA) and was attached to him,

and this is apparent according to the recurrent narration, hence they must be the ones referred to as “Ahl”.

Ibn Hajar Al Makki: “The Verse of Purification (33:33) according to most exegesists was revealed in regards to Ali, Fatima, Hasan, and Husain.” Source: Sawa’eq Al Muhreqa, pg. 220


Jabir Ibn Abdullah Al Ansari - The 1st Narrator

عن جابر بن عبد الله الأنصاري

The Tradition of the Cloak has been narrated by the tongue of one of the very close and pious companions of the Holy Prophet (SA), Jabir ibn Abdullah Al Ansari, as related by many sources of the School of AhlulBayt, e.g. Sheikh Al Bahrani in his bookA’walem Al Uloom . Jabir narrates this important incident through the tongue of the Master Lady of the Universe, Fatima Al Zahra (AS). It is imperative to familiarize ourselves with the character of this noble companion as he is the main narrator of this well-known and important tradition. It is commonly agreed that the higher the level of trust and degree of confidence we gain in the narrator, the higher is the confidence we will have in the tradition relayed by that narrator.

Who exactly is Jabir ibn Abdullah Al Ansari and what is notable about him?

He was the son of 'Amru` b. Huzam al-Ansa`ri al-Khazraji. He devoted his life to the members of the House of the Prophet (SA). He was the last survival among the Companions of the Prophet (SA) and he was a prominent companion of Imam Al Baqir (AS). He is unique in that he had the honor of delivering the greetings of the Prophet (SA) to his grandson Imam Al Baqir (AS).

Jabir took part in eighteen campaigns headed by the Prophet and fought in the Battle of Siffeen headed by the Commander of the faithful Imam Ali ibn Abi Talib (AS). Jabir loved Ali (AS) very much and he was very obedient to the members of the House (AhlulBayt). He would walk through the streets of Medina and say: "'Ali is the best of all mankind. Whoever denies that is an unbeliever. O People of Ansar, educate your children to love Ali."

In testimony to the piety of Jabir ibn Abdullah Al Ansari, Imam Al-Sadiq (AS) reported on the authority of his grandfathers, “Allah revealed this verse:

‘Say I demand not, of you any reward for it (the toils of preaching) except the love of my relations.’” (42:22)

Then the Prophet (SA) rose and said: 'A right for me has been imposed on you. Will you pay it to me?' No one answered him, so he went away. On the following day, he stood up and asked the same question. No one answered him, so he left them and went away. On the third day, he also asked the same question. Then he explained: 'The right is neither gold nor silver nor food nor a drink.'

'Therefore, say it,' they demanded. 'Allah has revealed these Words of His:'Say I demand not, of you any reward for it (the toils of preaching) except the love of my relations. ' 'This is the best right,' they said" Then Imam Al Sadiq (AS) remarked: "By Allah, no one was loyal to this right except seven persons. They are Salman, Abu Dharr, Ammar, al-Muqdad ibn Al-Aswad, Jabir ibn 'Abdullah al-Ansari, the retainer of Allah's Apostle (SA), and Zayd ibn Arqam.

The Prophet (SA) asked Allah (SWT) twenty-five times to forgive Ja`bir. He died at the age of ninety-four.

Recognizing the great status of the noble companion Jabir ibn Abdullah Al Ansari, we can now understand why he was honored to narrate the famous Hadeeth Al Kisaa which will resonate in the ears of all Muslims till the end of time.


Lady Fatima Al Zahra - The 2nd Narrator

عن فاطمة الزهراء (عليها السَّلام) بنت رسول الله (صلَّى الله عليه و آله (

Jabir ibn Abdullah Al Ansari, the trustworthy companion of the Holy Prophet (SA) narrates Hadeeth Al Kisaa directly from the pure tongue of the Master Lady of the Universe, Lady Fatima Al Zahra, the beloved daughter of the Seal of Messengers. Her esteemed status and immaculate personality cannot be questioned and is not in need for introduction. Her infallibility and purity has been demonstrated in countless occasions in history such as the Event of Mubahala, and in many verses in the Qur’an such as theVerse of Qurba (42:22), Surat Al Insaan, and Surat Al Kawthar. Since she is the narrator of this tradition and knowing her status of infallibility, everything she relates to us is the complete truth without any doubt in any of the details presented.

There has been difference in opinion as to whether the event of theTradition of the Cloak took place in the house of Lady Fatima (AS) or Umm Salamah, a wife of the Prophet (SA). The answer to that is that this event took place in the house of Fatima (AS) and she is the narrator as the event is told by her tongue. She narrates that the Prophet (SA) entered her presence, and then following him, her husband Imam Ali (SA) and her sons Hasan and Husain (AS).

It follows logically that it must have been her home that they entered and not the house of Umm Salamah. One may question what difference it makes whether the event took place in either house as it doesn’t change or affect the overall story. That is true; however, if theTradition of the Cloak took place in the home of Umm Salamah, some Muslims may have brought forth the argument that the virtue of infallibility and purification also includes the wives of the Prophet (SA).

The fact that the Prophet (SA) declined the request of Umm Salamah to enter the cloak, as we will see later, although he acknowledged her positive status and that she is “good”, eliminates the idea that the wives are included among the People of the Cloak.


Exchange of Greetings

دَخَلَ عَلَيَّ أبي رَسُولُ اللهِ (صلى الله عليه وآله) فِي بَعضِ الأيَّامِ فَقَالَ : أَلسَّلامُ عَلَيكِ يا فاطِمَةُ ، فَقُلتُ : وَ عَلَيكَ السَّلامُ ،

One day, my father the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him and his Household, visited me, "Peace be upon you, O Fatimah!" he said. "Peace be upon you, too." I answered.

When one of us meet a friend or neighbor, we typically exchange hellos and convey our greetings to that person. And the other person usually replies back with a ‘good morning’ or ‘Walaykum asalam’ (Peace be upon you). But what really is the extent and degree of that ‘salam’ (peace) that is extended between two different people? And is there any guarantee that two Muslims who are exchanging greetings of peace will actually achieve the practical and spiritual peace with each other? Often times, we find two individuals exchanging expressions of greetings or peace in the morning, yet in the afternoon they are busy fighting with each other over petty issues or otherwise. Thus, we may agree that it is not necessarily the case that all the words and actions of the layperson or common Muslim is always true and/or achieved.

However, when we speak about an infallible personality, we must recognize that all their words and actions are exactly on the dot and at the highest level of accuracy without exaggeration or underestimation. So, if they make a judgment, it is a just verdict, and if they make a decision, it is a wise course of action. Along the same lines, if an infallible guide who has been purified and divinely appointed as a guide for mankind, performs a simple action such as greet or convey ‘salam’ to another person, then we should not interpret that greeting as ‘routine’ or trivial. Rather, the peace which an infallible personality conveys to another person is to be interpreted as glad tidings and a guarantee for exceptional peace at all levels. Surely, those who represent Allah (SWT) cannot exchange peace with a person whom Allah (SWT) is displeased with or has committed injustice to others.

Furthermore, one can logically deduce that if the two individuals exchanging peace and greetings areboth infallible and divinely chosen for the guidance of mankind, then the product of such greetings must be at a grand level which one cannot comprehend. The degree of peace, the percent of guarantee, and the secrets behind that greeting is beyond our ability to fathom or reason.

In theTradition of the Cloak , the narration begins with greeting of peace by the Holy Prophet (SA) after he has entered the presence of his daughter Fatima Al Zahra (AS) who replies back affirming the peace to her father.

As discussed, this exchange of peace by two holy and exceptional personalities, the Seal of Messengers and the best of Creation, Muhammad, along with the Master Lady of the universe, Fatima, yields nothing but unbreakable unity between two purified souls which carries with it all the meanings of peace, tranquility, attachment, love, and devotion, etc. Such feeling of peace is not bound by time or place nor is it conditional on mundane factors. This expression of peace by the Prophet (SA) to Fatima

(AS) and vice versa is in fact an act of worship that is blessed by Allah (SWT) as He (SWT) instructed the believers in Surat Al Ahzaab, Verse 56:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّونَ عَلَى النَّبِيِّ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ وَسَلِّمُوا تسليما.

Surely Allah and His angels bless the Prophet; O you who believe! call for (Divine) blessings on him and salute him with a (becoming) salutation. (33:56)

In this verse, it is interesting to note that Allah the Almighty Creator first announces that He Himself along with the angels are praying on the Prophet. Then He (SWT) conveys His order to those who believe (hence excluding nonbelievers) to call for the blessings upon him and to salute him. This action of benediction and salutation to the Holy Messenger (SA) is an act of worship and obedience and is in fact obligatory upon all believers.

Furthermore, the verse highlights that only a true believer is given the permission to share in this blessed action of salutations and the servant is the one honored by having the ability and success in delivering these greetings to the beloved one.

If this is the grand station of Prophet Muhammad (SA) as depicted by verse 33:56, what about the station of Lady Fatima? Besides recognizing the fact that she is the Master Lady of the universe, we are to recall the authentic and well-known narration in all schools of thought where the Prophet (SA) emphasizes,“Fatima is a part of me, whoever harms her harms me, and whatever pleases her pleases me.”

So, if Lady Fatima (AS) is from the self of the Prophet (SA), then by the rules of logical correlation, we can deduce that when Allah (SWT) and the angels are sending their blessings on the Prophet (SA) as mentioned in verse 33:56, they arealso sending their blessings and salutations to his daughter Fatima! That is not surprising as the angels are known to accompany Lady Fatima in numerous occasions and descend upon her home regularly.


Physical Discomfort

قالَ : إنّي أَجِدُ في بَدَني ضَعفاً ، فَقُلتُ لَهُ : أُعِيذُكَ باللهِ يا أَبَتاهُ مِنَ الضَّعفِ.

"I can feel some fatigue in my body," he said to me, and I answered, "I pray Allah to protect you O father against fatigue."

The Messenger of Allah (SWT) then expresses to his daughter his feeling of weakness which he experiences physically. It is not uncommon for parents to express physical or any other discomfort and seek help from their children. What is expected is for the children and family members to rush to the aid of their loved ones, especially the elderly. Furthermore, it is narrated that

من شكى إلى مؤمن فقد شكى إلى الله ومن شكى لغير مؤمن فقد شكى الله.

Whoever complains to a believer has complained to Allah and whoever complains to a nonbeliever has complained about Allah.” (Bihaar Al Anwaar)

Hence, we learn that there is no problem in sharing our complaints to a believer who will give us an open ear and may support and assist us in a positive manner.

However, when we speak about providing assistant to a father who is not like any father, a guardian who is not like any guardian, a family member who is not like any family member, and a human being who is by far the best of creations, then the status of he or she who is given the opportunity to provide that aid must be noted and appreciated. Certainly it is the honor of Lady Fatima (AS) to rush to the aid of her father. Lady Fatima (AS) who by the testimony of the Prophet (SA) is “the mother of her father” spontaneously assumes the role of motherhood with all the love, care, and nurture that a mother gives to her darling.

Actually, this reminds us of the same position which her own mother Lady Khadija (AS) encountered after the Be’that (official inauguration as messenger of God) of the Prophet (SA) when he came down from Cave Hiraa' after receiving the first Revelation of Surat Al ‘Alaq. When he came to the house of Lady Khadija (AS), he requested his wife to cover him with a blanket. This scene is displayed in the Qur’an at the commencement of Surat Al Muddather where the Prophet (SA) was referred to as the “cloaked one” and also in Surat Al Muzzammel where he was referred to as the “enshrouded one”. Lady Khadija rushed to tend to her husband and cover him up and from there he earned his nickname which Allah (SWT) referred him to in the abovementioned chapters of Qur’an which were named by these titles of the Prophet (SA).

It became Prophet Muhammad's custom each year to spend the holy month of Ramadan in seclusion and reflection in a cave on the mountain of Hiraa’ which is located on the outskirts of Makkah. Lady Khadija (AS) would always make sure that he was provided with food and drink during his retreat. Towards the end of one Ramadan when he was forty years old, Muhammad (SA) suddenly appeared at their house in the middle of the night saying, "Cover me up, cover me up!"

Lady Khadijah (AS) quickly she wrapped a blanket around his shoulders and she asked him to describe exactly what had happened. He told her how

a being whom he had never seen before - angel Jibrael - had appeared to him while he was worshipping in Cave Hiraa’ and had instructed him to, "Read!" This state of physical discomfort would be experienced by the Prophet (SA) whenever he was about to receive a grand revelation from God through angel Jibrael (AS). This was the case in Cave Hiraa' when he received the word of God for the first time. The fact that the Prophet (SA) has just experienced physical comfort of the same nature which urged him to make the same request for covering him, may be an indicator that he is also about to receive divine revelation, and that is exactly what happened (as we will see)!

It is known in the historical accounts of the prophet’s autobiography that Lady Fatima (AS) was the source of comfort and consolation for her father. Whenever he didn’t feel well or suffered pain, he would rush to the house of Fatima (AS) where he found relief, comfort, and peace. Whenever her father felt distressed, he looked at her face and his worries and grief would disappear just like Imam Ali (AS) said about his wife, “Whenever I looked at her all depression and sadness was lifted from my heart.” Otherwise, why didn’t the Prophet (SA) go to any of his wives to seek comfort since a man usually feels tranquility with his wife, as the Qur’an says:

“And one of His signs is that He created mates for you from yourselves that you may find rest in them, and He put between you love and compassion.” (30:21)

And Allah (SWT) also defined the relationship between a husband and wife as:

“They are your garments (Libaas) and you are their garments.” (2:187)

But instead of going to any of his wives, the Prophet (SA) went to his daughter Fatima because she was “the mother of her father” (Umm Abeeha) and he would feel most peace and relief when he went to see Fatima. Hence, it is not surprising that Al Hakim narrates“Whenever The Prophet (SA) used to travel the last person he would see was Fatima (AS). When he returned from his travel the first person he would go to see would be Fatima.”

Lady Fatima (AS) seeks refuge from Allah (SWT) for his physical weakness, and there is no doubt that this feeling of weakness is only temporary and will disappear as the whole world is in need of this great energy of the Prophet (SA) that is crystalized in his mercy, goodness, and generosity, etc.


Station of The Yememite Cloak

فَقَالَ : يا فاطِمَةُ إِيتيني بِالكِساءِ اليَمانِيِّ فَغَطّينِي بهِ .

What is the significance of theKisaa (cloak)? It is a piece of cloth or sheet which the Prophet (SA) requested to cover him to ease his discomfort. Here, one may think that it is so insignificant that history records the Prophet (SA) experiencing exhaustion or discomfort and requesting a cloak. Furthermore, why is the Prophet (SA) specifically asking for a cloak to cover him when he could’ve asked for something to eat or drink?

As believers, we are to be reminded that the wisdom of the Almighty Creator (SWT) is greater than what our minds perceive and He (SWT) does not do anything in vain. If it were not for the Yeminite Cloak (Kisaa) which the Prophet (SA) requested, theTradition of the Cloak would not have existed, and the purification verse (Ayat Al Tat-heer) which is the ultimate result of this event wouldn’t have been revealed in this incident. TheKisaa is the means by which the members of his household are gathered to set the stage for the revelation of the Purification verse (33:33).

As we will discuss later, it is narrated in theTradition of the Cloak that the total individuals who were granted permission to enter under the cloak with the Prophet (SA) were four: Ali ibn Abi Talib, Lady Fatima, and their sons Hasan and Husain. In addition, archangel Jibrael (AS) was also given divine and prophetic permission to join the holy five in this exceptional setting. With the knowledge that all these divine personalities were under the cloak and didn’t enter its protection without the permission of the Prophet (SA), we can better appreciate the significance of the cloak. Though it may be a materialistic item, theKisaa is a symbol of protection, a sign of unity and purity, and the representation of the infallibility of the Holy Five.

The cloak can be seen as analogous to the “Cave of Refuge” (كهف الورى ) as they are described in the beautiful invocation of Salawat Sha’baneyah . It is similar to the Arc of Prophet Nuh (AS) which the Prophet (SA) resembles to his purified household, as narrated in the famous Hadith As-Safinah by Anas ibn Malik that the Messenger of Allah (SWT) said:

"مثل أهل بيتى كمثل سفينة نوح من ركبها نجا ومن تخلف عنها غرق."

Surely the likeness of my AhlulBayt is similar to Noah's Ark, whoever boards it will attain salvation and whoever remains behind is drowned. (Al Durr Al Manthur) Whoever rides the Arc of Noah or more appropriately the Arc of the AhlulBayt (AS) of Prophet Muhammad (AS) will be saved and will attain salvation in both worlds.

In this context, we can view the Cloak of the Prophet to be similar to the Arc of the Prophet (SA) in that whoever recognizes the significance behind the immaculate personalitiesunder the cloak who have been purified by divine command, will also attain the blessings of the cloak! An example of such blessings is demonstrated at the conclusion of this narration where Imam Ali (AS) asks the Prophet (SA) what is the significance of this blessed gathering under the cloak and he replies back with the rewards that the Shi’as and lovers of AhlulBayt (AS) will attain if they recite and appreciate this gathering. We shall discuss this aspect in detail later.

Even though only the infallible guides are admitted entrance under this purified cloak, we as the lovers and devotees of the Prophet (SA) and his holy household can also aim to seek permission from Allah (SWT) and the Messenger (SA) to join them under the cloak. We can follow the example of Archangel Jibrael (AS) who recognized that his station was no were close to that of the AhlulBayt (AS) despite his high rank in Allah’s eyes, yet he still expressed his devotion to them by seeking their unity and proximity.


Radiance Of The Holy Prophet

فَأَتَيتُهُ بِالكِساءِ اليَمانِيِّ فَغَطّيتُهُ بِهِ وَ صِرتُ أَنظُرُ إِلَيهِ وَ إِذا وَجهُهُ يَتَلَأ لَأ كَأَنَّهُ البَدرُ فِي لَيلَةِ تمامِهِ وَ كَمالِهِ

I brought him the Yemeni cloak and covered him with it. I then kept on looking at his face, which was glittering like a moon at the night of its fullness and perfection.

Lady Fatima (AS) brings the cloak to her father and she covers him. A parent in general appreciates and prefers the service of their children more than a stranger or even a housemaid. There is no comparison to the feeling that the parent gets when they experience care and affection from their own children compared to others. Lady Fatima (AS) went on looking and gazing at him as she covered her father.

According to the Islamic code of conduct, it is highly recommended for a person to look at the faces of their parents and persist in doing so. (Fiqh Al Zahra) On the other hand, it is narrated that he who gives his parent an abhorrent look, Allah (SWT) will not accept anything from him. With that in mind, imagine if the father of a person is the prophet of God, never mind the Seal of Messengers and best of creations! It is also recommended to look at the face of a knowledgeable scholar or even at the door of a scholar.

From these traditions, we come to understand that there is indeed a positive effect that we acquire from “looking” at a scholar or parent, and that effect is not limited to the materialistic aspect but is rather spiritual and long-lasting. Same is the case regarding the Holy Ka’aba which we are encouraged to gaze upon.

That is because looking at someone who have reached the stage of perfection or has come close to it will in turn make that person approach the stage of perfection that is personified in that person or thing. That’s why it is recommended to look at the face of an infallible person such as Imam Ali (AS) as the Prophet (SA) said in his regards,“Looking at the face of Ali is worship”. (Wasa’el Al Shi’a)

If gazing at the face of a scholar is recommended, then it is not surprising that he who is the gate of knowledge be one whom the Prophet (SA) would specifically identify him as deserving of such merit.

Upon observing her father, Lady Fatima (AS) observed that his face was “glittering like a moon at the night of its fullness”. It is interesting that this is how the Prophet (SA) appeared even though he just expressed physical weakness.

It may seem like a contradiction but the reality is that Lady Fatima (AS) became preoccupied and captured by the beauty and splendor of her father. She knew very well that her father was not like any father or man; her father was the best of creation and the Seal of Messengers who is delivering the final revelation to all of mankind till the end of time! In her mind, Lady Fatima (AS) was not simply looking at her father, but rather, the divine representative of her time who has authority on her and all the believers.

Words could not describe what she observed upon looking at the Prophet (SA) under the cloak. However, the analogy Lady Fatima (AS) presents gives a hint and draws a good picture of what magnanimity of appearance

emanated from her father’s face. She testifies that her father’s face“was glittering like a moon at the night of its fullness and perfection” . It is the course of nature that when the lunar month reaches the middle, the moon becomes full and thus, we observe it to be radiating from the sky like a piece of diamond in the midst of a black sea.

The scene is beautiful and sensational as it urges us to reflect on the Almighty Creator who has brought into existence every beautiful creation of His and bestowed us the ability to observe and recognize that. Due to the exceptionally beautiful scene of the full moon in the midst of the sky, it has become the tradition of the Arabs in particular to draw an analogy of the full moon to anything that is distinctly beautiful and radiant.

The blessed face of the Prophet (SA) which constantly appears to be radiant with the glow of light emanating from him is certainly analogous to the full moon at the middle of the month. Actually, the radiance of splendor from the Prophet’s appearance ismuch greater than that of a full moon glittering at the night of its fullness and perfection!

Furthermore, it should be noted that the physical or materialistic beauty can only be recognized by those who have eyes of the heart that can be able to identify that beauty. If we compare that physical beauty emanating from the Prophet (SA) to his inner and spiritual beauty, we will surely recognize that the latter is much greater and cannot be measured by a normal human being. It is certainly quite interesting that the person who is testifying on behalf of the Prophet (SA) about his splendor in appearance isherself the manifestation of the splendor of creation!


Etiquettes Of The Ahlulbayt

فَما كَانَت إِلاّساعَةً و إذا بوَلَدِيَ الحَسَنِ قَد أَقبَلَ وَ قالَ : أَلسَّلامُ عَلَيكِ يا أُمّاهُ ، فَقُلتُ : وَ عَلَيكَ السَّلامُ يا قُرَّةَ عَيِني وَ ثَمَرَةَ فُؤادِي

No more than a while passed when my son al-Hasan came in, "Peace be upon you, mother!" he greeted. "Peace be upon you, too, O delight of my eye and fruit of my heart!" I replied.

TheTradition of the Cloak essentially begins with the sequence of events commencing with the entrance of Imam Hasan ibn Ali (AS) who is the first person to enter the presence of the Prophet (SA) after encountering his mother. Lady Zahra (AS) narrates that her son Hasan enters home and conveys his greetings of peace to her.

This scene is an example of the etiquette and manners which children should observe when they enter their homes and meet their family members, especially the parents.

Unfortunately nowadays, we find that many kids come back from school or work and fail to extend proper greetings to the members of their home as they run off straight into their rooms as if they are living in a hotel or dorm. This incorrect behavior does not reflect the manners of believers who follow the path of AhlulBayt (AS) and who are members of a unified family institution that represents the overall unity of the nation.

When entering or leaving your house, a person must acknowledge its inhabitants by greeting with the label of Islam,'Asalam 'Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh (peace and mercy of Allah be with you). As a Muslim, one should not neglect this Islamic greeting by replacing it with another phrase, such as 'Good Morning,' or 'Hello.' Pronouncing theSalaam is the sign of Islam and the phrase that the Messenger of Allah (saw) recommended and practiced.

So important is the etiquette to be displayed upon entering a home that it is even narrated that if a person enters their home and there is no one present in it, it is still recommended to pronounce greetings (salam) upon entry in vacant places and that greeting is directed to other living things that may be inhabiting your surroundings.

Also among the etiquettes of entering a house is to make your presence known to those inside before you approach them. Also, one should avoid startling or frightening them and give a head notice before you enter their presence suddenly.

In response to her son Hasan, Lady Fatima (AS) conveys her greetings to her beloved son and her eldest darling. Furthermore, she refers to him with two different titles:‘the delight of my eye and fruit of my heart’ . One can very well imagine the grand stature of he who possesses the honor of being delight of the eyes of the Master Lady of the universe and the purified daughter of the Seal of Prophets!

Lady Fatima is she whom her father has testified on her behalf, “Fatima is part of me, and whoever pleases her, pleases me ."(Al-Sawa'eq Al-Muhriqa)

She is also the one whom he said to her, “O Fatima, verily Allah is angry when you are angry .” (Mustadrak Al-Hakim) Therefore, as we understand

from the combination of both traditions, the position of Lady Fatima (AS) towards anything and anyone is equivalent to the position of Allah (SWT). So, if we observe that Fatima is pleased with person ‘A’, then Allah (SWT) is also pleased with person ‘A’ and vice versa.

The title which Fatima labels her son Hasan as “delight of my eyes” certainly indicates the peak of pleasure and joy that she feels about him! Furthermore, if we contemplate about the most important organs in our body, we will find the eyes to be irreplaceable and very precious. So when Fatima (AS) says that Hasan is the “delight” of her eyes, she has associated her delight with a most valuable part of the body.

Moreover, she describes him to be “the fruit of her heart”. The heart is in fact the most important vital organ in the body of a human being without which a person cannot live. The expression “fruit of the heart” speaks volumes of the special position which Imam Hasan (AS) enjoys in regards to his mother. He is the “fruit” which refers to the purified progeny that is bestowed to Lady Zahra (AS), just as she is the “Kawthar” (the abundant good) bestowed as a divine gift to her father.


Pleasant Fragrance of The Holy Prophet

فَقالَ : يا أُمّاهُ إِنّي أَشَمُّ عِندَكِ رائِحَةً طَيِّبَةً كَأَنَّها رائِحَةُ جَدِي رَسُولِ اللهِ (صلى الله عليه وآله) ، فَقُلتُ : نَعَم إِنَّ جَدَّكَ تَحتَ الكِساء،

I replied. "O mother," he said, "I can smell a pleasing scent as if it is the scent of my grandfather the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him and his Household."

"Yes, it is," I answered, "Your grandfather is now under the cloak."

After the exchange of pure greetings between the Master Lady of the Universe and the Master Youth of Paradise, Imam Hasan (AS) remarks that he smells a pleasant scent at home which resembles the fragrance of his grandfather - the Prophet (SA). This is the second time in theTradition of the Cloak that the Holy Prophet (SA) is described physically with a positive attribute.

The first being his shining face that resembles a full moon, and the second being the good scent which emanates from his pure being.

It is not surprising as all the prophets and messengers have good fragrance and there was never anything shameful or humiliating ever displayed from them. Then one can imagine the Seal of Prophets and Messengers who is the best of creation! Surely, he must enjoy physical and materialistic purity that complements the spiritual purity.

This is proven by virtue of the purification verse in Verse 33 of Surat Al Ahzaab,“Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House! and to purify you a (thorough) purification.”

Every person in this world has two aspects of his life, apparent and concealed which are physical and spiritual, respectively. The balance in the development of a good human being is obligatory for both activities. Islam is a clean religion and prefers a person to be clean physically and have pure thoughts. Physical purity provides a person respect and honor in the eyes of the world.

Allah (SWT) advises the believers to clean themselves for such a condition suits their spiritual state and nature. Cleanliness is considered a form of worship by believers, and is therefore a source of great relief and pleasure to them. In many verses of the Qur’an, Allah (SWT) draws attention to the believers’ spiritual and physical purity.

Prophet Muhammad (SA) often stressed the importance of being clean as he said, “Cleanliness is half of faith ”. (Sahih Muslim) The Holy Qur’an also refers to the importance of wearing clean clothes,

“Purify your garments. And shun uncleanness.” (74:4-5)

Furthermore, physical cleanliness is important because it shows one's respect for other people. Indeed, respecting other people requires taking care of one's physical appearance.

Having a pleasant fragrance is certainly a sign of cleanliness and the Prophet (SA) is the best exemplar for both physical and spiritual cleanliness combined together and has apparently attained the reputation of having good scent as it is narrated that a beautiful scent of musk used to emanate from his drops of sweat. This is similar to the scent of musk from Lady Fatima (SA) which came from Paradise, and in that context the Prophet (SA) used

to smell his daughter and remark that“Whenever I yearned for the smell of Paradise, I would smell the fragrance of my daughter Fatima”. (Muntakhab Kanz Al-‘Omaal)

So Imam Hasan (AS) recognized his grandfather’s presence at home just by his purified scent. Sure enough, Lady Fatima (AS) confirms that deduction and informs Hasan that his grandfather is indeed under the cloak.