Are Shiites People of Paradise?

The Details of the Question

- How can their dislike of the first three caliphs be interpreted?
- The Shiites fulfill all the deeds of worship and all the Islamic requirements prescribed in Islam. However, they dislike Abu Bakr (ra), Umar (ra) and Uthman (ra). Are the Shiites not true believers then?
- Is it not possible for them go to Paradise?
- Is loving the first three caliphs in Islam a prerequisite for Paradise?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

It is haram to speak ill of the Companions of the Prophet (pbuh). A person who speaks like that is called Ahl al-bid’ah. It is very dangerous, especially from a religious point of view, to underestimate and insult the first four caliphs. Such people are not called unbelievers but they are not Ahl as-Sunnah.

The following is stated in a hadith included in the Sunan of Daraqutni, reported from Ibn Masud:

“Allah Almighty chose Companions for me. He made them my friends, sons-in-law, father-in-law and my ansar (helpers). Soon some people will come and will disparage them and cause them to be insulted and degraded. If you reach them (their time), do not marry your sons and daughters off with them; do not eat and drink with them; do not perform prayers with them; and do not perform their janazah prayers (when they die).” (1)

The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) touches on several points in the hadith above:

a. As Allah chose him as the last prophet, He also chose for him the Companions who were worthy of him and suitable for his greatness. He prepared them. The word khayr (khiyara) means it became good, it was useful for him in that respect. Ikhtiyar means intiqa and istifa. It means choosing one thing over another. Ikhtiyar includes choosing the good, the better and the best; and it includes selection and preference. There is a preference for one over the other. From this point of view, the Companions (ra) were chosen by Allah and were considered companions and friends worthy of the Messenger of Allah.

b. Allah made them the Companions of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh); in addition, He chose from among them sons-in-law and fathers-in-law for the last Prophet who was the greatest in terms of virtue. Although the term “sihr” is used for the son-in-law who becomes a relative through marriage, (2) the term “ashar” is used for the close relatives of both the wife and the husband. (3) According to this hadith, just like the companions of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh), his ashar, sons-in-law and fathers-in-law were also chosen by Allah as worthy of and suitable for him. In that case, Uthman (ra), who married his two daughters one after the other and received the title of “Dhunnurayn”, was chosen by Allah and became his son-in-law; that is, Allah chose and favored him among the Muslims as the son-in-law of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh); similarly, He also chose and favored his uncle’s son, Ali (ra), as the husband of his youngest daughter, Fatima (ra).

c. Likewise, the fathers of the wives of the Messenger of Allah, who were honored with Islam, were also chosen by Allah just like the father of his wife Aisha was chosen as a worthy father-in-law by his marriage, and the father of Hafsa, Umar (ra), was chosen by Allah as his father-in-law. If Allah chose and liked his sons-in-law, fathers-in-law and Companions, how can it be possible for us not to like them? Is it possible not to say yes to what Allah chose and not to like and love what He likes and loves?

d. The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) states the following in a hadith:

“Guard me with regard to my companions and my relatives; whoever protects me with regard to them, Allah will protect him in this world and the Hereafter. And whoever does not guard me with regard to them, Allah will turn away from him; and it is near that He will seize him with punishment.” (4)

Thus, he forbids us from criticizing, insulting and speaking against both his relatives and all his Companions. Therefore, it is not permissible to criticize, insult, show enmity and hatred toward his relatives and Companions. This is the only way to preserve the reverence of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) for his Companions and relatives.

It is not permissible to bear a grudge against, to curse and to insult Abu Bakr (ra), his father-in-law, Umar (ra) and Abu Sufyan (ra); similarly, it is not permissible to curse, insult, to be hostile to and hate his sons-in-law, Uthman (ra) and Ali (ra). Our attitude toward all the Companions should be the same as our attitude toward his relatives:

“Whoever protects the Messenger of Allah with regard to his Companions and relatives, Allah will protect him in this world and the Hereafter.”

Otherwise, He will turn away from him and punish him.

e. It is stated in the hadith that after the time of the Companions, some people who criticize the Companions, who want to defame them, who curse and insult them, who claim that they are not inferior to them in virtue, and who even say that they can surpass them will emerge. (5) Such people will say,

“...We definitely read and understood (the Quran), so who is better than us?” (6) 

The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) states the following about these people who will come during the decline period of Islam:

“I wonder if there is anything good in them?” He says to his Companions, “They are the ones who will come out of you (this ummah) and they are the fuel of Hell.” (7)

The same people are mentioned in this hadith too and it is stated that “a group of people who will disparage them (the Companions of the Prophet) and curse them will emerge soon.

f. In the last part of the hadith, the attitude that the true believers who love the Companions, and the relatives of the Prophet (pbuh) and do not speak ill of them, who love Ansar should adopt toward those who have an attitude against the Companions, the relatives of the Prophet (pbuh) and Ansar, who hate them, who spread their shortcomings, and who do not respect and love them is shown. They are advised not to not marry their sons and daughters off with those who do not love the Companions, Ansar and relatives of the Messenger of Allah, not to be together with them and not to attend their funerals. 7

Footnotes:

(1) Ramuzul-Ahadith, p. 86, no: 1196; Hayatus-Sahaba II, 561; Tafsirul-Quranil-Azim IV, 205, 306, Sharhul-Aqidatit-Tahawiyya, II, 691, 694, 698; Sunanu Ibn Majah; I, 97 (that there will be a time when the last part of the ummah will curse the first part); VIII, 89 (that ignorance will emerge and be dominant at the end of the ummah); we think that is the reason why some people do not like the first members, salaf, of the ummah.
(2) al-Mu’jamul-Wasit p. 527; see also as-Sawaiqul-Muhriqa, p. 170-171; Muhammad Sabban, Is’afur-Raghibin, Egypt, 1375, p. 119; al-Munawi, Abdurra’uf, Faydul-Qadir, I-IV, Mısır, 1958, II, 512.
(3) Faydul-Qadir I, 197, II, 512.
(4) Faydul-Qadir, I, 197, II, 512.
(5) Faydul-Qadir I, 197.
(6) see Ramuzul-Ahadith, p. 366, hadith 4525. (from Tabarani al-Kabir).
(7) Ramuzul-Ahadith, p. 366, hadith 4525.

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