Ahl al-Bayt

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Ahl al-Bayt
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{{short description|Term referring to the family of Muhammad}}{{unreliable sources|date=August 2018}}{{Use dmy dates|date=January 2019}}{{Muhammad}}Ahl al-Bayt (), also Ahlul-Bayt (), Āl al-Bayt (), or Ahli Bayt (}}), is a phrase meaning "People of the House" , "People of the Household" or "Family of the House". Within the Islamic tradition, the term mainly refers to the family of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad,QURAN, 33, 28, 40, ns, Ahl al-Bayt, Encyclopedia of Islam and to a lesser extent, his ancestor Ibrahim (Abraham),QURAN, 11, 69, 83, ns, In Shia Islam, the Ahl al-Bayt are central to Islam and interpreters of the Quran and Sunnah. Shias believe they are successors of Muhammad and consist of Muhammad, Fatimah, Ali, Hasan, and Husayn (known collectively as the Ahl al-Kisa, "people of the mantle") and the rest of the Imams from The Fourteen Infallibles. There are differing opinions on the scope and importance of Ahl al-Bayt.{{Citation needed|date=August 2018}}In Sunni Islam, Muhammad's household refers to Muhammad himself; his wives his sons Qasim, Abdullah, Ibrahim his daughters Zainab, Ruqayyah, Umm Kulthum and Fatimah; his cousin and son-in-law Ali; and their two sons, Hasan and Husayn. In the interpretation of certain traditions the term may also be extended to include the descendants of Muhammad's paternal uncles, Abu Talib and al-'Abbas, or according to Malik ibn Anas and Abu Hanifa, all of the Banu Hashim.


In this topic, the word ahl al-bayt is treated base on the Quranic verse, in line with the commentary.BOOK, Faith and Reason, Hadavi Tehrani, Ayatullah Mahdi, ..., 2014, 978-1-3126-1635-6, To sum up, the meaning of ahl al-bayt in the Quran follows the accepted usage of the term in pre- and post-Islamic Arab society. It denotes family and blood relations as well as a noble and leading "house" of the tribe.BOOK,weblink Encyclopedia of the Qur'an, 4, P-Sh, Mc Aulliffe, Jame Dammen, Brill Publishers, Brill, 2004, 978-9-0041-2355-7, 48,


The term Ahl signifies the members of a household of a man, including his fellow tribesmen, kin, relatives, wife or wives, children and all those who share a family background, religion, housing, city and country with himweblinkBayt refers to habitation and dwelling, whether tented or built. It can also be roughly translated as "household". The ahl al-bayt of a person refers to his family members and all those who live in his house. Ahl al-Bayt is the polite form of addressing the members and wife of the family.Mufradat al-Qur'an by Raghib Isfahani; Qamus by Firoozabadi; Majm'a al-Bahrayn

In the Qur'an

The Qur'an uses the term Ahl al-Bayt twice as a term of respect for wives.BOOK, Princeton University Press, 9780691134840, Böwering, Gerhard, Patricia Crone, Wadad Kadi, Mahan Mirza, Muhammad Qasim Zaman, Devin J. Stewart, The Princeton Encyclopedia of Islamic Political Thought, 11 November 2012, The term ahl al-bayt (the people of the house) is used in the Qur'an as a term of respect for wives, referring to Abraham's wife Sarah (Q. 11:73), for example, and to the Prophet Muhammad's wives, who are declared to be purified by divine act: "God's wish is to remove uncleanness from you" (Q. 33:32–33)., The first instance refers to Muhammad's wives,QURAN, 33, 33, and the second refers to Abraham's wife Sara.QURAN, 11, 73, According to some interpretations, the Qur'an also implicitly refers to Ahl al-Bayt in QURAN, 42, 23, ns, n, , using the term al-qurbā.WEB,weblink The Ahlul Bayt,, 14 August 2012,weblink" title="">weblink 31 July 2012, live, dmy-all, {{Unreliable source?|date=August 2018}}WEB,weblink'habs/Quran-Ahlul-6.htm, The Quran Speaks About Ahlul Bayt, {{Unreliable source?|date=August 2018}}


{{Islam |history}}There has been much debate concerning which people constitute ahl al-bayt. Although there have been many disagreements, there is a consensus amongst Sunni and Shi'a Muslims that the "Ahl al-Kisa" hadith refers specifically to Ali, Fatimah, Hasan and Husayn. Mention of the ahl al-bayt, Muhammad's household, is present in a verse of the Qur'an as follows:WEB,weblink ĀL-E ʿABĀ, 16 September 2014,weblink" title="">weblink 18 October 2014, live, dmy-all, }}The precise definition of the term in this verse has been subject to varying interpretations. In one tradition, according to which Muhammad's companion Salman al-Farsi is included as a member, it is used to distinguish from the muhajirun (Muslim emigrants from Mecca) and ansar (Medinan converts to Islam). According to Sunni doctrine, the term includes the wives and dependants of Muhammad, as it addresses them in the preceding verse – an interpretation which is attributed to 'Abd Allah ibn 'Abbas and Ikrimah ibn Abi-Jahl, both of whom were companions of Muhammad. This is supported{{Synthesis inline|date=May 2010}} by various traditions attributed to Muhammad wherein he addresses each of his wives as Ahl al-Bayt.See:
  • "Ahl al-Bayt", Encyclopedia of Islam
  • Madelung (1997) p. 15 Further members of the household, according to the Sunni perspective, include Ali, Fatimah, Hasan and Husayn, who are mentioned in the tradition of the mantle. Some versions of this tradition recognise Umm Salamah, a wife of Muhammad, as a part of the household. Thus, according to the Encyclopaedia of Islam, "the current orthodox view is based on a harmonizing opinion, according to which the term ahl al-bayt includes the ahl al-Ê¿abāʾ, i.e. the Prophet, Ê¿AlÄ«, Fāṭima, al-Ḥasan and al-Ḥussain, together with the wives of the Prophet." According to Laura Veccia Vaglieri in Encyclopaedia of Islam "there is a story narrated in many traditions according to which Muḥammad sheltered under his cloak, in varying circumstances including the Mubahala, his grandchildren Ḥasan and Hussein, his daughter Fatimah and his son-in-law Ali; and therefore it is these five who are given the title Ahl al-Kisa or "People of the Mantle". Some have attempted to add Muḥammad's wives to the list; however, the number of the privileged is limited to these five.""Fāṭima." Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition. Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs. Brill Online, 2014. Reference. 8 April 2014
Other interpretations include the family of Ali, as well as the families of Muhammad's relatives such as Aqeel, Ja'far, and al-Abbas.WEB,weblink Al-Quran Tafsir – Tafsir Ibn Kathir- Surah33.Al-Ahzab, Ayaat32To34 – Alim,, 20 March 2018,weblink" title="">weblink 21 March 2018, live, dmy-all, Early Islamic jurists Malik ibn Anas and Abū Ḥanīfa included the clan of Banu Hashim within the definition, while al-Shafi'i included the whole of Banu Muttalib.In Shia thought, the household is limited to Muhammad, Fatimah, Ali, Hasan, Husayn, and their descendants (altogether known as the Ahl al-Kisa); as per their deduction from the tradition of the mantle. They interpret the change in pronoun in the Qur'anic verse as showing that only the aforementioned members constitute Ahl al-Bayt. Madelung writes that "this change of gender has inevitably contributed to the birth of various accounts of a legendary character, attaching the latter part of the verse to the five People of the Mantle."Madelung (1997) pp. 14–15 Shias view these individuals as infallible and sinless Imams and regard devotion to them as an essential part of the religion.Shia Muslims also support this claim with a hadith mentioned in the Sunni Ṣaḥīḥ collection. Many Sunni scholars remark that the verse of purification was revealed concerning five people: Muhammad, Ali, Fatimah, Hasan and, Ghayat al-Marum, p. 126:al-Suyuti, al-Durr al-Manthur, Vol. V, p.199; Ahmad ibn Hanbal, al Musnad, Vol. I, p.331; Fakhr al-Din al-Razi, al-Tafsir al-Kabir, Vol. I, p.783; Ibn Hajar, al-Sawa'iq p.85
The last sentence of verse 33:33.QURAN, 33, 33, ns, }}
The tradition about this hadith goes from different sources to Fatimah, the daughter of Muhammad. She narrated that once her father visited her home, he had fever and was not feeling well, he asked for a Yemeni cloak which Fatimah brought to him and folded it around him. Later he was joined in that Yemeni cloak by his grandsons Hasan and Hussein, who were followed by their father Ali ibn Abi Talib, who was cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad. Finally Fatimah asked the permission to enter that cloak. When all five of them joined together under the cloak, Muhammad narrated the Qur'anic verse 33:33 to those under the cloak that all five of them are chosen ones, and he further stated that he wants God to keep all impurities out of reach and away from all of us. Muhammad then prayed to God to declare all five of them as his Ahlul Bayt and keep away the Najasat (impurities). God, at that request immediately sent Gabriel (Jibral) to reveal to Muhammad that all the five under the cloak are dearest and closest to God and they are Taher ("purest of the pure") without any traces of impurities.BOOK, Jame al-Bayan Fi Tafsir al-Quran, Tabari, Muhammad bin Jarir, Dar al-Ma'rifah, 1991, 22, Beyrut, 6, The Twelver and Ismaili branches of Shia Islam differ in regards to the line of Imamate. While the Twelver believe in a lineage known as the Twelve Imams, the Ismaili believe that the descendants of Isma'il ibn Jafar, rather than his brother Musa al-Kadhim, were the inheritors of the Imamate instead.According to Anas ibn Malik, Muhammad, for six months straight used to pass by the door of Fatimah whenever he left for fajr prayers and said, "it is time for salat, of family of the house (Ahel al biat)! 'Surely Allah desires to remove all imperfection from you, of family of the house, and purify you completely.{{' "}} From surah Al Ahzab 33, verse 33, Sunan al-Tirmidhi- Vol. 2 sahih 902Most, but not all Shi'a believe that these A'immah to be the divinely chosen leaders of the Muslim community.Madelung, 1997, pp. 13–17 This is based on the hadith, "People of the Cloak", where the Prophet referred to only Fatimah, Ali, Hasan, Hussain and Himself (stating that wives were not part of the Ahl al Bayt because they could be divorced and were no longer part of the household when their husband died), a hadith which many Sunni Muslims believe in. Collectively Muhammad, Fatimah and the Twelve Imams are known as The Fourteen Infallibles.WEB,weblink Who Are Ahlul-Bayt? Part 1,, 10 January 2015,weblink" title="">weblink 29 December 2014, live, dmy-all, 2013-11-12, In Kitab al-Kafi, Imam Muhammad al-Baqir has narrated that there will be twelve Imams from the family of Muhammad, nine from the family of Husayn ibn Ali, the last being Al-Qa'im, and they will be spoken to by angels.BOOK, Kitab al-Kafi, Al-Kulayni, Abu Ja’far Muhammad ibn Ya’qub, 2015, The Islamic Seminary Inc., 9780991430864, South Huntington, NY, .


Muslims accord Muhammad's household a special status and venerate it.WEB, al-Munajjid, Shaykh Muhammad, What is the virtue of Ahl al-Bayt,weblink, 15 November 2014,weblink" title="">weblink 25 December 2014, live, dmy-all, This is derived from verses in the Qur'an and hadith which stipulate love towards Muhammad's relatives â€“ though in some cases interpretations differ, an example being: "Say: "No reward do I ask of you for this except the love of those near of kin".QURAN, 42, 23, ns, According to classical exegete al-Tabarani (260–360 AH{{}}873–970 CE) the verse most likely refers to Muslim believers related by blood ties. Another interpretation adopted by Shia applies the verse to the ahl al-bayt; while another view interprets the verse as commanding love for relatives in general. The latter view is favored by contemporary academic scholar Madelung.Madelung (1997) p. 13Sharia (Islamic law) prohibits the administration of sadaqah (charity) or zakat (tax) to Muhammad's kin (including the Banu Hashim), as Muhammad forbade this income for himself and his family.WEB, al-Munajjid, Shaykh Muhammad, Ruling on giving zakaah to Ahl al-Bayt,weblink, 15 November 2014,weblink" title="">weblink 25 December 2014, live, dmy-all, The explanation given by jurists is that these alms are considered the defilements of the people, who offer them to purify themselves from sin, hence it would be unbecoming of the kin to handle or use them. Instead, they are accorded part of the spoils of war.Madelung (1997) p. 14A verse in the Qur'an reads: "That which Allah giveth as spoil unto His messenger from the people of the townships, it is for Allah and His messenger and for the near of kin and the orphans and the needy and the wayfarer, that it become not a commodity between the rich among you.", (QURAN, 59, 7, ns, ) Muslims in their daily prayers invoke blessings upon them by saying: "O God, bless Muhammad and his family." In many Muslim communities, high social status is attributed to people claiming to be blood-descendants of Muhammad's household, and are labelled sayyids or sharifs.Ahl al-Bayt, Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim world.Most Sunni Sufi circles (tariqah) trace their spiritual chain back to Muhammad through Ali.WEB,weblink History of Khalifa Ali bin Abu Talib – Ali, The Father of Sufism – Section 1 – Islamic History – Alim,, 20 March 2018,weblink" title="">weblink 13 November 2013, live, dmy-all, In Shia thought, Muhammad's household is central to the religion. In one version of Muhammad's farewell sermon, he is represented as saying that God has given believers two safeguards: the Qur'an and his family; in other versions the two safeguards are the Qur'an and his Sunnah (statements and actions of Muhammad). Popular Shia belief ascribes cosmological importance to the family in various texts, wherein it is said that God would not have created Jannah (heaven) and earth, paradise, Adam and Eve, or anything else were it not for them. The majority of Shia regard the heads of the family as divinely chosen Imams who are infallible and sinless.

See also

Hashemites, the Jordanian royal family




  • BOOK, Madelung, Wilferd, Wilferd Madelung, The Succession to Muhammad: A Study of the Early Caliphate, Cambridge University Press, 1997, 978-0-521-64696-3,
  • BOOK, Ordoni, Abu Muhammad, Muhammad Kazim Qazwini, Fatima the Gracious, Ansariyan Publications, 1992, B000BWQ7N6, Fatima the Gracious,
  • BOOK, Tahir-ul-Qadri, Muhammad, Virtues of Sayyedah Fatimah, Minhaj-ul-Quran Publications, 2006, 978-969-32-0225-0,
  • ENCYCLOPEDIA, Tritton, A.S, Goldziher, I., Arendonk, C. van., P.J. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, Clifford Edmund Bosworth, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs, Encyclopaedia of Islam Online, Ahl al-Bayt, Brill Academic Publishers, 1573-3912,

External links


  • weblink" title="">Interactive Family Tree of Muhammad saw by Happy Books
{{Islam topics |collapsed}}{{Characters and names in the Quran}}{{Authority control}}

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