Tag Archives: shia scholars

Comparing Sunni and Shia sources for the biography of the Prophet ﷺ

The biography (Seerah) of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ in Sunni and Shia sources. Who has the primary sources? Who relies on the other for the Seerah information?

Sunni & Shia Seerah Sources

A brief overview and comparison

One of the grave matters Sunni & Shi’ite theology fundamentally disagree upon is the historical narrative pertaining to the Prophet’s life.

This narrative is mostly the result of divergent primary historical sources.

Some of the most important texts in this context are Seerah/Maghazi works, which focus on the Prophet’s life and can contextualize reports found in other sources while providing the backbone for a historical/theological narrative.

Let’s evaluate both traditions in this light:

Notable Sunni Seerah Sources:

– The Seerah of Ibn Ishaq (d. 151)
– The Maghāzī of Ma’mar b. Rashid (d. 153)
– Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra by Ibn Sa’d (d. 230)
– Tarikh Khalifah b. Khayyāt (d. 240)
– Tarikh Ibn Abi Khaythamah (d. 279)
– Tarikh al-Tabari (d. 310) etc



The aforementioned sources are extant primary sources that have compiled a vast array of data pertaining to the Seerah through sources that intersected and diverged at various points.

Similarly, they have preserved data from earlier extant works as well, such as reports from:

– al-Zuhrī (d. 124)
– Musa b. ‘Uqbah (d. 141)
– Ali b. Muhammad al-Mada’ini (d. 225) and others etc.

As evident, “Sunni” literature is capable of reproducing a vast amount of data pertaining to the Prophet’s life, which would allow for a solid backbone for the seerah.

Individual reports from hadith sources would further add in this skeleton’s structure & context.

The question that would then arise is:

What about Shi’i seerah sources?

The reality of the matter is that there is not a single classical Twelver seerah source that can be cited in this context.

Many contemporary Shi’i authors cite:

1. al-Ya’qubī’s Tārīkh (d. 292).

Al-Ya’qubi clearly was a Shi’i-leaning historian; however, he actually is unknown to Twelver scholarship, as he was not mentioned in Twelver biographical sources.


Similarly, al-Ya’qubi rarely, if ever, mentions the source of his information, further rendering the book even more questionable.

It’s also quite a later source when compared to Sunni seerah sources that significantly predated it.

2. Murūj al-Dhahab wa-Ma’adin al-Jawhar by al-Mas’udi (d. 346)

This source embodies an extremely abridged summary of the seerah.

al-Mas’udi was mentioned by Ibn al-Najashi; however, his reliability was not endorsed by any early Shi’i authority.

He seemed to often depend on Sunni sources, as he cited Ibn Ishaq and Ibn Sa’d on some occasions.

What further demonstrates this is the alignment of decent portions of his seerah with the “Sunni seerah.”

He praised Abu Bakr and Umar, but he seemed to subtly criticize Uthman.



Other than that, Twelver scholarship has no classical Seerah works.

Thus, it is evident that not a single reliable Twelver seerah work exists to piece together the Prophet’s biography.

What is the end-result?

The end-result is that the only thorough Twelver seerah works were authored by contemporaries.

A good example is al-Amili’s الصحيح من سيرة النبي الأعظم

An enormous work.



Though one may be impressed with the book’s size, it’s author actually inflated its font size and spacing, which made the book seem much larger than it actually is.Nevertheless, in this book, one can observe a common phenomenon that can be seen in many Twelver seerah books.

The Shi’ite author, in reality, was not able to piece a thorough Prophetic biography without depending on Sunni sources.

Otherwise, he would be left with a very limited & unsubstantiated biography that is of little value.

Sunni sources fill the footnotes throughout the book.




What the author conveniently does is that he depends on Sunni sources for the general structure of his Seerah, & he then proceeds to appropriate aspects of it by citing individual reports from 12er sources.

He cannot reproduce a complete seerah from exclusively Twelver sources. The reason why such large gaps exist in Twelver sources pertaining to the Sirah is because it was mostly neglected among classical 12er scholarship.

Rather, efforts were mostly dedicated to post-Prophetic controversies, such as al-Jamal, Siffin, the deaths of some imams etc. 12er sources focused on a few events from the Prophet’s life, which pertained to Ali b. Abi Talib, ( Ghadeer Khumm etc)

Other than that, they are significantly lacking in this regard, which is why a Shi’i scholarship will forever be dependent on Sunni sources for Seerah/history.

The end

(For now)

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Shia general rule for the Sahaba

The default stance or the general rule in the Imami Twelver Shia sect regarding the companions of the Prophet (saw).

Renowned Shia scholar `Ali al-Namazi a-Shahroudi says in his book “Mustadrakat `Ilm-ul-Rijal” 1/67:

[We conclude from the big quantity of narrations declaring that all companions are apostates except three or four, that the general rule for every companion who remained alive after the Prophet (saw) and did not become a martyr in his time, is that they are apostates for placing the non-chosen leader (means Abu Bakr) in authority over the chosen leader (means `Ali), or impious sinners for their short comings when it came to supporting him (means `Ali), thus it is not possible to assume the reliability of any of them except through a specific divine text.]

Originally posted here.

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A List of Shia to Sunni converts

Copied from brother Muslim Khorasani’s twitter: https://twitter.com/MuslimKhorasani

[Thread: A list of Shia to Sunni converts]

Note: Most of these people are either scholars, researchers or people with deep polemical knowledge. Pls DM if any name is missing.

  1. Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Abul Fazl Borqie borqie_tabatbaiehttp://www.borqei.com/?q=en/life Lecture: www.youtu.be/SY0MSVlo5x4
  1. Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Hussein Al-Moayyad ex_Shia_almoayyadhttps://gift2shias.com/2013/11/15/shia-cleric-shaykh-al-moayyad-who-left-shiism-for-islam-and-sunnah/ His website: https://www.almoaiyad.com/

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Were ALL the 12 ‘Shia’ Imams Murdered?

-=[Were ALL the Twelve ‘Shia’ Imams Murdered?]

Al-Mufeed said in Tasheeh Al-I’itiqadaat p.131-132:

“As for what Abu Ja’afar (ra) (Ibn Babawayh) said about the passing of our Prophet and Imams (as) through poison and murder, some of it occurred and some did not. What is certain is that the Commander of the Faithful (Ali), Al-Hasan, and Al-Hussain (as) left this world through murder and did not die naturally. As for those that passed away due to poison, it occurred to Musa bin Ja’afar (as) and it is likely that it occurred to Al-Redha (as), even though there is doubt in this. There is no way to declare that any of the others were poisoned, assassinated, or murdered. Such reports are a matter of emotional invocation and cannot be ascertained.”

For those that aren’t aware, most Twelver Shias today seem certain that all the Imams were killed/poisoned.

As we can see from the quote above, the most significant Shi’i historian of all time, Al-Mufeed, rejects this belief.


Taken from brother Farid’s twitter.

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Shia scholar: Parts of Quran oppose Allah’s revelation

Ali bin Ibrahim al-Qummi author of the classical Twelver Shia commentary of the Quran, Tafsir al-Qummi, says in the introduction that some of the verse in the Quran oppose what Allah has revealed and he provides an example using Shia Hadiths attributed to Ahlulbayt.  This is just one of the tons of examples that he mentions in his Tafsir.

On page 5 of volume one where he is explaining the various contents of the Qur’an, he says some parts of it are abrogated and others are abrogating, some parts are explicit and others are vague, some parts of it are general and others are specific… then he says:

ومنه على خلاف ما انزل الله

“And some parts of it oppose what Allah has revealed.”

Then he even gives further examples as to what he means on page 10, he says:

واما ما هو كان على خلاف ما انزل الله فهو قوله ” كنتم خير امة اخرجت للناس تأمرون بالمعروف وتنهون عن المنكر وتؤمنون بالله ” فقال ابوعبدالله عليه السلام لقاري هذه الآية ” خير امة ” يقتلون امير المؤمنين والحسن والحسين بن علي عليه السلام؟ فقيل له وكيف نزلت يابن رسول الله؟ فقال انما نزلت ” كنتم خير ائمة اخرجت للناس

[As for what opposes what Allah revealed, then it is like his saying {You were the best nation brought forth for mankind, you enjoin what is good and forbid what is evil and believe in Allah} Abu `Abdillah (as) said to the one who recited this verse: “Best nation!?” They killed `Ali and Hasan and Husayn (as)!? They said: “Then how was it revealed O son of Rasul-Allah (saw)?” He said: It was revealed as {You were the best Imams brought forth for mankind}]

And he gives other examples of verses he believes were corrupted by the companions to hide the virtues of the Imams.

Originally posted here.

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Book “The Distortions of al-Saduq” Download in PDF


Finally, the English translation of this magnificent book is available for download exclusively on Twelvershia.net. May Allah bless the author Farid for his hard work and research and Hani for translating it for the English readers.

This eye opening book proves without a doubt the distortions and manipulation at the hands of the greatest Twelver Shia classical scholars whom they call “Shaykh Saduq, someone who narrated around 20 thousand narrations in Shia books. How can one take his religion from such a man? It is for the open minded Shias to think about!

The Distortions of al-Saduq (Tahreefat al-Saduq in Arabic)

A Critical Inductive Study on the Evolution of the Traditional Shīa Narrative through the Textual Distortions of Ibn Bābūyah al-Qummī aka Shaykh Saduq

Written by Farīd al-Baḥrainī
Translated by Hānī al-Ṭarābulsī

The book “Distortions of al-Saduq” on Twelvershia.net. Click to download PDF.

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Shia preacher Azhar Nasser plagiarises Nouman Ali Khan’s lecture word for word

Shia scholar Azhar Nasser plagiarises Nouman Ali Khan’s speech word for word. He has also been caught stealing other people’s tweets and share them as his own. He first got the attention of the Sunni Defense team when he insulted a prominent companion of the Prophet (saw).


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Shia Preacher Mahdi Modarresi Debates a Sunni Researcher

Interesting Twitter discussion between the Sunni researcher Farid @Farid_BHR (now @Farid_0v) and the famous Shia preacher Sayed Mahdi Modarresi, the founder of the biggest Shia TV Channel in English language (Ahlulbayt TV).

Topic of the discussion: The alleged attack on the house of Sayyida Fatima.

Note: The Shia preacher refers to Prophet’s (ﷺ) closest friends Abubakr Siddiq and Omar as “idols” as well as saying they have special place in hell.
Note: The full screenshots are at the end of the page.

It all started from here:

“I regret ordering the ambush against the house of Fatima!” The proverbial smoking gun and self-incriminating confession of the culprit behind the attack..

An example of a Shia scholar quoting one hadith from MANY sources, when in reality they all go back to ONE weak narrator: Ulwan bin Dawud. Continue reading


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Shia scholars disguised themselves as Sunnis to mislead people

Original post link


Here are Twelver Shia scholars talking about their comrades, who of course used Taqiyyah to convert Sunnies.


وأن إظهاره أحد المذهبين تقية واستصلاح وقد وقع مثله في رجالنا كثيـراً مما يطــــــــــــــــــول تعدادهم ممن كانوا يتظاهرون بالشافعية وغيره.
الكشكول – البحراني 3/ 19

[And he (i.e Shia scholar) when he would present himself as being from one of the two Madhabs, he did so out of Taqiyyah and to win them over. This kind of thing happens a lot with our scholars (i.e Shia scholars) and it’s too long to count the examples of those who claimed to be Shafi`i among others.]

Al-Bahrani – al-Kashkoul 3/19.


وكان يتحنف ويفتي على مذهب أبي حنيفة نعمان بن ثابت الكوفي تقية.
معجم رجال الحديث – الخوئي 5/ 54

[And he (i.e Shia scholar) used to identify himself as Hanafi and gave verdicts according to the Madhab of abi Hanifah Nu`man bin Thabit al-Kufi out of Taqiyyah.]

Mu`jam Rijal – al-Khu’i 5/54


والظاهر ان الضعف باعتبار القضاء من جهة العامة ويمكن ان يكون للتقية ولسهولة نشر اخبار اهل البيت (عليهم السلام) كما فعله جماعة من اصحابنا
خاتمة المستدرك – الطبرسي 5/ 33

[What’s apparent is that they weakened him due to his verdicts concerning the mainstream Muslims (Sunnies), this could be out of Taqiyyah as it facilitates the spreading of Ahlul-Bayt’s (as) narrations as a group of our companions (i.e scholars) did.]

Khatimat al-Mustadrak – Tabrasi 5/33


وكان على الظاهر يتفقه على مذهب الشافعي ويرى رأي الشيعة الامامية في البــــاطن.
الفهرست – الطوسي ص208

[He apparently was a jurist of the Shafi`i school but he believed in the opinion of the Shia internally.]

Al-Fehrest – Tusi 208


كنت في الشام مظهراً أني على مذهب الشافعي.
روضات الجنات – الخونساري 7/ 71

[When in Sham (Syria) I showed that I was a Shafi`i.]

Rawdat al-Jannat – Khawansari 7/71.


[كــــــــــــان يظهر خلاف عقيدة الإمامية مداراة واستصلاحاً لرعيته].
أعيان الشيعة – الأمين 5/ 182

[He (i.e Shia scholar) used to appear as an opponent of the Imami creed to be friendly and win-over his followers.]

A`yan al-Shi`ah – Amin 5/182


[قـــال بعض علمائنا أنه زيدي , وقـــال بعضهم أنه كان إمامي إثنى عشري كما يظهر من تأليفاته , و أنه لما كان يدعو الفرق المختلفة في المذاهب إلى نصرته , أظهر بعض الأمور التي توجب ائتلاف القلوب خوفاً من أن ينصرف الناس عنه].
تنقيح المقال في علم الرجال – المامقاني 20/ 100

[Some of our scholars labeled him as Zaydi, others said he’s Twelver as his books show. Seeing as though he called the various sects to support him, he would display outwardly things to make them friendlier so they wouldn’t abandon him.]

Tanqih al-Maqal – Mamaqani 20/100

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Shia scholar: Early Shias did not believe in Infallibility of Imams

Grand Ayatollah Kamal al-Haydari says the Shia of the first three centuries did NOT believe in the concept of INFALLIBILITY of the Imams. He provides evidence from Shia books.


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