The Texts on the Imamat of Imam Musa Kazim (as)

Imam al-Sadiq, peace be on him, informed his followers of the Imamate of his son Musa, peace be on him, when the world shone with his birthday. On every occasion he told them of that and asked them to keep that a secret for fear for them and his son of the ruling authority. When the Imam, peace be on him, was seventy years old, a group of his followers hurried to him to ask him about the Imam after him to pledge allegiance to him and to resort to him in respect with the affairs of their religion. He answered them that the Imam after him would be his son Musa, peace be on him; the following is the presentation of these texts:

1. Al-Mufaddal Bin 'Umar

Al-Mufaddal Bin 'Umar al-Ju'fi was among the prominent Shi'ites and one of their famous, great figures. He asked Imam Ja'far b. Muhammed, peace be on him, about the Imam after him to follow him and to adopt his Imamate, and he, peace be on him, answered: "Mufaddal, the Imam after me is my son Musa, the hoped, awaited successor."[1]

2. Yazid Bin Sulayt

Yazid Bin Sulayt[2] was trustworthy and trusted. He was among the men of piety and knowledge. He and a group of his companions made the pilgrimage to the Sacred House of Allah (Mecca). On his way, he met Imam Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq), who was accompanied by his sons and retainers. He hurried to the Imam to ask him about the Imam after him, saying: "May my father and mother be your ransom; you are the purified Imams; none escapes from death; who is the Imam after you?" The Imam, peace be on him, indicated with his hand to his son Musa and explained his ideals with which he was endowed. He said: "He has the knowledge of wisdom, understanding, generosity, knowledge of that which men need and of the affairs of their religion over which they differ. He has good manners and good neighborhood; he is one of Allah's gates; he has another (quality) that is the best of all these (qualities)."
-May my father and mother be your ransom, what is it?
-Allah, the Most High, will bring forth from him the succor of this community, its relief, its knowledge, its light, its understanding, and its wise man, the best baby and youth. Through him Allah will prevent bloodshed, correct discords, bring together the people of separation, make peace among (them), clothe the naked, satisfy the hungry, make the fearful safe, and send rain down. Men obey him; the best middle-aged one and young man; his words are a decision; his silence is knowledge; he explained to men that over which they differ."[3]
The Imam, peace be on him, told them about that with which Allah had gifted his son such as that He placed among his progeny the rightly-guided one (Mahdi) of the family of Muhammed, may Allah bless him and his family, of whom the Prophet and the Imams after him gave good news. He will set right crookedness, the regulations of the world and the religion. He will not come till corruption prevails, oppression becomes public, chaos spreads, deviation from the religion becomes famous, the earth is full of discords and disorders; may Allah bring about his early reappearance, place us among those who summon to him and support him.

3. Dawud Bin Kuthayr

Dawud Bin Kuthayr hurried to Imam Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq) to ask him about the Imam after him, saying: "May Allah make me your ransom and make me die before you, I am afraid that something may happen, to whom shall I resort?" "To my son Musa," replied the Imam.
Dawud became assured with this answer; his conscience rested; he had no doubt and perplexity about the knowledge of the Imam; just as he has said: "I have no doubt of Musa even a twinkle of an eye."[4]

4. Al-Fayd Bin al-Mukhtar

Al-Fayd had the honor of visiting Imam Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq), peace be on him. A conversation took place between them about Abu al-Hasan Musa; while they were talking about his affairs, he entered; Abu 'Abd Allah turned to al-Fayd and said to him: "Fayd, he is your leader about whom you have asked me; rise and admit his right."
Al-Fayd hurried and began kissing the Imam on the hand and the head; he asked Allah to prolong his lifetime; then he turned to Abu 'Abd Allah and asked him: "May I be your ransom, shall I tell someone of him?" "Yes," replied the Imam, "your family, your children, and your companions."
Through this tradition we understand that the Imam and his followers kept the affair of the Imamate a secret for fear of the oppressive authority. So al-Fayd went to his loyal companions and gave them good news (of the Imamate of Musa). Among them was Younis b. Zabyan, who wanted to be sure of (the news) and went to the house of Imam Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq); when he reached the Imam, he said to him: (Younis, the affair is just as al-Fayd has told you." Accordingly, Younis left cool-hearted; he was flooded by happiness and delight out of this grace he attained.[5]

5. Ibraheem al-Karkhi

Ibraheem al-Karkhi visited Imam Ja'far b. Muhammed (al-Sadiq), peace be on him. While he was sitting with the Imam, Abu al-Hasan Musa came. Ibraheem rose for him and Abu 'Abd Allah said to him: "Ibraheem, he is your leader after me. Some people will perish through him, and some others will be happy through him. May Allah curse those who will kill him and double chastisement against their souls. Allah will bring forth from his backbone the best of the people of the earth of his time, the namesake of his grandfather and inheritor of his knowledge. The tyrant who belongs to the children of so-and-so will kill him after unique miracles out of envy of him, but Allah will attains His purpose though the polytheists may averse." By him he meant Muhammed al-Mahdi, may Allah bring about his early reappearance, the namesake of the Prophet and the one similar to him in destroying oppression and putting an end to the oppressive.
He talked about his son Allah had gifted with grace and dignity, saying: "Allah will bring forth from his backbone twelve rightly-guided ones. He will distinguished them by his dignity and place them in the abode of His Holiness; he who follows the twelve one from among them is like him who draws his sword before Allah's Apostle to defend him."
When Imam al-Sadiq, peace be on him, reached these words, some Umayyad hirelings broke into his house, and he, peace be on him, stopped his talk. Ibraheem wanted him to complete it but he did not do that; so he left Yethrib (Medina) for his homeland. In the following year he had the honor of visiting the Imam while he felt burning desire for hearing the rest of his speech. The Imam, peace be on him, understood that and said: "Ibraheem, he will remove distress from his Shi'ites after long straits and tribulation, impatience and fear; so blessed is he who lives during his time." Then he said to him: "That is enough for you, Ibraheem."
Ibraheem was pleased with this speech of the Imam and said: "I have never returned with a thing more delightful and happier to my heart than this (speech)."[6]

6. 'Isa al-'Alawi

`Isa b. 'Abd Allah al-'Alawi visited Imam Ja'far b. Muhammed to ask him about the Imam after him, saying: "If some thing happened-may Allah not make me see such a thing-who should I follow?"
He, peace be on him, pointed to his son Musa.
"If anything happened to Musa, who should I follow," asked 'Isa.
"His son," replied the Imam.
"If anything happened to his son," 'Isa went on, "and he left a big brother and a small son, who should I follow?"
"His son; it is always this," answered the Imam.
"If I do not recognize him and his place?"
"You say: O Allah, I follow the one from among Your proofs from among the children of the last Imam who has remained, for that is enough for you."[7]

7. Mu'adh Bin Kuthayr

Mu'adh Bin Kuthayr[8] visited Imam al-Sadiq to ask him about the Imam whom he should follow after him, saying: "I ask Allah, Who provided your father with you for this position, to provide you with one of your offspring for the same position before your death."
"Allah has granted that," he answered.
"May I be your ransom, who is it?"
He pointed to his son Musa, who was sleeping, saying: "This one who is sleeping." He was at that time a boy.[9]

8. Mansur Bin Hayim

Mansur Bin Hayim visited Imam Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq) asking him to designate the Imam after him, saying: (May I ransom you) with my father and mother. There is a great coming and going among men about (the succession). Since that is so, who is it?"
"This is your leader," replied Abu 'Abd Allah.
He pointed to Abu al-Hasan Musa; then he tapped the right shoulder of Abu al-Hasan (Musa). He was at that time, as far as I know, about five years old.[10]

9. Sulayman Bin Khalid

Sulayman Bin Khalid has narrated, saying: "I and a group of my companions were sitting with Imam Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq), peace be on him. He called for his son Musa. When he stopped in front of him, he turned to his companions, saying: 'It is your duty (to follow) this man after me. By Allah, he is your leader after me.'"[11]

10. Saffwan al-Jammal

We have previously mentioned his narration we have given as a proof of the cleverness and genius of Imam Musa during his childhood.

11. Ishaq Bin Ja'far

Ishaq b. Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq has narrated the following, saying: "One day I was with my father when 'Umran b. 'Ali asked him: "May I be your ransom, to whom shall we and the people turn after you?"
He answered: "To the owner of two yellow clothes. He who is coming out of the door to you."
'Ali was yearning for and looking at him who was coming out of the door. They did not wait long before Imam Musa came out of the door. He was still a boy and was wearing two yellow garments.[12]

12. 'Ali Bin Ja'far

'Ali b. Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq, peace be on him, has narrated, saying: "I heard my father Ja'far b. Muhammed, peace be on him, say to a group of his close associates and followers: 'Treat my son Musa with kindness. He is the most meritorious of my children and the one who will succeed after me. He is the one who will undertake my position. He is Allah's proof (hujjat) to all his creatures after me.'"[13]

13. Zayd Bin Asbat

Yazid b. Asbat visited Iman Abu 'Abd Allah al-Sadiq, peace be on him, during his illness of which he passed away; the Imam turned to him, saying: "Yazid, do you see this (pointing to his son Musa)? When you see that the people differ over him, then bear witness for me that I have told you that Yousif's sin in his brothers' sight when they had thrown him into the well was that they envied him. That was when he told them that he had seen eleven stars and the sun and the moon making obeisance to him; similarly this boy shall be envied."
Then he called for his sons: 'Abd Allah, Ishaq, Muhammed, al-'Abbas, and Musa. He said to them: "This-pointing to his son Musa-is the testamentary trustee of the testamentary trustees, the scholar of the scholars, and a bearer of witness to the dead and the living."[14]

14. Salama Bin Muhriz

A hypocrite from among the 'Ajaliya has criticized the Shi'a for their belief stipulating that an Imam should be succeeded by an Imam. The hypocrite said that Imam al-Sadiq had no successor to replace him. He mentioned that in the presence of Salama b. Muhriz. When the latter heard the words of the former, he became displeased and went to the Imam, peace be on him to inform him about his words and to ask him to designate an Imam after him. He said to him: "My master, a man from among the 'Ajaliya said to me: 'How long will this an old man remain (alive) for you? He will die within one or two years, and then you will have no Imam to follow."
Abu 'Abd Allah al-Sadiq said to him: "Why have you not said to him that Musa b. Ja'far has attained the age of ritual puberty?"[15]

15. Zarara Bin A'yun

Zarara b. A'yun[16] has narrated, saying: "I visited Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq), peace be on him. There was with him the master of his children Abu al-Hasan Musa, and there was in his assembly a corpse covered with a garment. Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq), peace be on him, ordered me to bring him Dawud al-Raqqi, Hamran, and Abu Baseer. I went out to bring them and came across al-Mufaddal b. 'Amr, who was heading for the Imam. (Meanwhile) I saw the people going to the house of the Imam. I quickly went and brought the people to him. When they had the honor of meeting him, he, peace be on him, turned to Dawud al-Raqqi and said to him: 'Uncover Isma'il's face.' He uncovered his face and he was a motionless corpse. He, peace be on him, asked Dawud al-Raqqi: 'Dawud, is he alive or dead?'
"'My master, he is dead.'"
He showed him to all those who attended his assembly to make them bear witness to his death; he asked them to acknowledge and admit his death. He did that to refute the claims of some Shi'ites who maintained that Isma'il would be the Imam after his father, for he was righteous and abundantly knowledgeable. He, peace be on him, wanted to return them to reason and correctness and to tell them that the Imam after him was his son Musa. Then he ordered Isma'il to be prepared for burial. He was washed and shrouded. Then the Imam ordered al-Mufaddal b. 'Amr to uncover Isma'il's face again that the people might see him and be sure of his death and that they would have no doubt about that. After that he wanted to increase them in certainty and to remove doubt from them, so he turned to all his companions and asked them: "Is he alive or dead?"
They all confessed his death, so the Imam, peace be on him, raised his hands towards the heaven, saying: "O Allah, bear witness, for surely those who say untrue things will have doubt about him. They desire to put out the light of Allah-he pointed to his son Musa- with their mouths, but Allah will perfect His light, though the unbelievers may be averse. Then the Imam ordered Isma'il to be buried in his final resting place. After he had laid him to rest in the narrow space within the grave and poured the earth over him, he turned to his companions to remove doubts and suspicions from them, asking: "Who is the one who is dead, shrouded, perfumed, and buried in the grave?"
"He is Isma'il," they all said.
"O Allah, bear witness!" Then he took his son by the hand and said: "He will be the truth; the truth will be with him and (issue) from him till Allah inherits the earth and those who are on it."[17]
Imam al-Sadiq confuted with these repeated declarations all those who had doubts and suspicions about the Imamate of his son Isma'il. More than one time He explained to them that the Imamate was not in his hand but it was in the hand of Allah, the Exalted, Who grants it for whom He pleases of His servants. Abu Baseer has narrated, saying: "I was with Abu 'Abd Allah (al-Sadiq), peace be on him. His companions mentioned the testamentary trustee (of authority) and Isma'il. So the Imam turned to them and said: 'No, by Allah! Abu Muhammed that (the affair of the Imamate) does not belong to us; no one except Allah, may He be magnified and exalted, Who designates (the Imams) one by one."[18]
Imam al-Sadiq, peace be on him, declared that the affair of designating an Imam was not in his hand. However, it was in the hand of Allah, Who chooses from among his servants those who have good tendencies and noble talents. Accordingly, none has the right to choose the Imam; a special group of the Shi'ites knew this subject matter and believed in it. In this respect Zareef b. Nafi'[19] has narrated the following: "While I was (sitting) with al-Husayn b. Zayd and his son 'Ali, Abu al-Hasan Musa, peace be on him, passed by us. He greeted us and went away. I asked al-Husayn: 'May I be your ransom, Musa is known as the Qa'im of the household of Muhammed, may Allah bless him and his family?'
"'If someone knows him, then it is he." Then he said: "And how does (none) know him? And he has the writing of 'Ali b. Abi Talib and the dictation of Allah's Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family.'"
His son asked him: "Why do my father Zayd b. 'Ali have not that?"
"My little son, surely 'Ali b. al-Husayn and Muhammed b. 'Ali are two masters and Imams of men. So, my little son, your father Zayd kept close to his brother, followed his example, and studied jurisprudence under him."
"My father, if something happens to Musa, peace be on him, will he designate one of his brother as his testamentary trustee?"
"No, by Allah, he will designate none as his testamentary trustee except his son."[20]

16. A Shi'ite

A Shi'ite visited Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq and asked him to designate the Imam after him, and he, peace be on him, answered: "Your seven one is he who will undertake the office of the Imamate (Qa'im); he is the namesake of the owner of the Torah." By the owner of the Torah he means Musa b. 'Umran, peace be on him.[21]

17. A Companion of his

One of his companions had the honor of meeting him and asked him to designate the Imam after him, and he, peace be on him, replied: "Count the days." He counted them beginning from Sunday. The Imam asked Him: "How many days have you counted?" "Seven days," he answered.
Imam al-Sadiq explained, saying: "The Saturday of the Saturdays, the Sun of the times, the Light of the months, the one who does not fool and play, your seven one who will undertake the office of the Imamate (Qa'im)." Then he pointed to his son Musa.[22]