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Last Updated: 2012/04/03
Summary of question
Please explain about the authenticity of the text and chain of transmission of Ziyarat Ashura.
Please explain about the authenticity of the text and chain of transmission of Ziyarat Ashura.
Concise answer

There are two reliable books containing this Ziyarat. They are Kamil al-Ziyarat by Ja’far bin Muhammad bin Qulawayh Qummi (348 A.H.) and Misbahul Mutahajjid by Shaykh Tusi (385 – 460 A.H.). According to certain rijal (biographical) rules, Ibn Qulawayh’s report is authentic and trustworthy. As for the report that has been narrated in Misbahul Mutahajjid, we must say that the book has recorded two reports both of which include a chain of transmission. However, a general evaluation about the narrators leads us to three suppositions: Either the narrators are reliable and trustworthy, or they are in a category in which there are both trustworthy and untrustworthy narrators or there is evidence indicating the reliability and trustworthiness of the narrator. On the whole, we can say that the chain of transmission of Ziyarat Ashura is authentic and there is no problem in it.  As for the content of Ziyarat Ashura, some have raised criticisms saying that it is cursing the entire Banu Umayyad family. The criticism has been dealt with in a separate article and you can find it on this website. Kindly refer.

Detailed Answer

Ziyarat Ashura has reached us through Imam Baqir and Imam Sadiq, peace be upon them. Thus, the authenticity of its chain of transmission must be accepted. In addition, the content of Ziyarat Ashura should not also run counter to the teachings of the Quran and to hadiths because if it is opposed to them, then we cannot consider it to be authentic. The following report makes reference to both the subjects:

One: Authenticity of Ziyarat Ashura

There are two reliable books containing this Ziyarat. They are Kamil al-Ziyarat by Ja’far bin Muhammad bin Qulawayh Qummi (348 A.H.) and Misbahul Mutahajjid of Shaykh Tusi (385 – 460 A.H.). Hence, we shall first study the report mentioned in Kamil al-Ziyarat and then we shall go through Shaykh Tusi’s report in Misbahul Mutahajjid.

1 -1. Kamil al-Ziyarat by Qulawayh

Ibn Qulawayh writes about the reward (sawab) of reciting Ziyarat Ashura:

حَدَّثَنِی حَكِیمُ بْنُ دَاوُدَ بْنِ حَكِیمٍ وَ غَیرُهُ عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ مُوسَى الْهَمْدَانِی عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ خَالِدٍ الطَّیالِسِی عَنْ سَیفِ بْنِ عَمِیرَةَ وَ صَالِحِ بْنِ عُقْبَةَ جَمِیعاً عَنْ عَلْقَمَةَ بْنِ مُحَمَّدٍ الْحَضْرَمِی، وَ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ إِسْمَاعِیلَ عَنْ صَالِحِ بْنِ عُقْبَةَ عَنْ مَالِكٍ الْجُهَنِی عَنْ أَبِی جَعْفَرٍ الْبَاقِرِ ع قَالَ مَنْ زَارَ الْحُسَینَ ع یوْمَ عَاشُورَاءَ مِنَ الْمُحَرَّمِ...".

Then he says about the authenticity of Ziyarat Ashura: 

قَالَ صَالِحُ بْنُ عُقْبَةَ الْجُهَنِی وَ سَیفُ بْنُ عَمِیرَةَ قَالَ عَلْقَمَةُ بْنُ مُحَمَّدٍ الْحَضْرَمِی فَقُلْتُ لِأَبِی جَعْفَرٍ (ع) عَلِّمْنِی دُعَاءً أَدْعُو بِهِ فِی ذَلِكَ الْیوْمِ...".

Alqamah bin Mohammed bin Alhadhrami (r.a.) narrates:  “I requested Imam Baqir (a.s.) to teach me a salutation by which I may greet and salute him (Hussein) on that day (i.e. the day of 'Ashura'), if I were to visit him from near, and by gesturing towards him when from afar.”

 Imam Baqir (a.s.) replied: 

“O Alqamah, whenever you wish to recite the Ziyarat of Imam Hussein (a.s.), you first perform two units of prayers. Then turn towards the grave of Imam Hussein (a.s.) and while pointing towards it say:

Peace be on you, O Aba Abdillah! Pae be on you, O son of Rasulullah (saw)!

Peace be on you, O the select, surpassing, chosen in preference over all goodness of Allah, and son of Allah’s (such) goodness.

Peace be on you, O son of Amirul Momineen (a.s.), and Son of  the Master of the  successors!

Peace be onyou, O son of Fatima (s.a), Sayedatul Nisa al-Alameen!..”[1]

The chain of the narration reaches the Infallible Imam (a.s.) through two individuals namely 'Alqama bin Muhammad al-Hadhrami’ and ‘Malik bin A’yun al-Juhani’. In both narrations, Salih bin Uqbah has narrated from them. However, in one of the narrations, he has passed the report together with Sayf bin Umayra and in another narration, he transits the narration alone. The closing part of the narration has been narrated by Salih bin Uqba and Sayf bin Umayra from Alqamah bin al-Hadhrami from Imam Baqir (a.s.). In reality, the narration has been passed with three chains of transmission:

A) Hakim bin Dawood bin Hakim and others from Muhammad bin Musa al-Hamadani from Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi from Sayf bin Umayra from Alqamah bin Muhammad al-Hadhrami.

B) Hakim bin Dawood bin Hakim and others from Muhammad bin Musa al-Hamadani from Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi from Salih bin Uqbah from Alqamah bin Muhammad al-Hadhrami.

C) Muhammad bin Ismail from Salih bin Uqbah from Malik al-Juhani from Abu Ja’far al-Baqir (a.s.).

As for the second chain of transmission, there are two possibilities: A – Ibn Qulawayh like Shaykh Tusi has cited Ziyarat Ashura from Muhammad bin Ismail’s book in which case the chain of transmission, as shall be mentioned later on, will be rectified till Muhammad bin Ismail and then Salih bin Uqbah.  B – His writing “and Muhammad bin Ismai'l”, is a coordinating conjunction to his writing “Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi ”. Thus the chain of transmission of Ibn Qulawayh to the book of Muhammad bin Ismai'l bin Bazi' is the same chain as his chain to the book of Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi:  Hakim bin Dawood, Muhammad bin Musa al-Hamadani, Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi, Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’, Salih bin Uqbah, Malik al-Juhani.

In fact, it is a distant probability because it is much more likely that Muhammad bin Ismail’s book had been well-known in those times and both Shaykh Tusi and Ibn Qulawayh have narrated the Ziyarat from it.

An Analytical Study of Ibn Qulawayh’s Report

Ibn Qulawayh writes in the preface to his book:

We acknowledge that we cannot encompass everything which has been narrated from them about this topic (ziyarah) or about any other topic (for that matter).  Furthermore, I have only narrated that which was reported to me by the trustworthy ones from among our companions – may Allah’s Mercy be upon them – and I did not include anything which has been reported by unknown or unreliable sources who are not well-known for their knowledge and narrations.[2]

Shaykh Hurr Amili, testifying the reliability of the narrators in Ali bin Ibrahim’s exegesis (tafsir), says about Kamil al-Ziyarat: “And also Ja’far bin Muhammad bin Qulawayh has testified that the narrators of Kamil al-Ziyarat are reliable and trustworthy. His explicit statement in the beginning of Kamil al-Ziyarat is more expressive and frank than Ali bin Ibrahim’s.”[3]

However, there are some scholars who have stressed that the above statement only authenticates the first intermediary i.e. the person from whom Ibn Qulawayh narrates without an intermediary.[4] This is the rule finally accepted by late Grand Ayatollah Khoei (may Allah bless him).[5] In his earlier writings, Ayatollah Khoei (r.a.) writes: “This passage clearly denotes that he (Ibn Qulawayh) does not mention anything in his book except that which he has come across from authentic sources.”[6]

Yet, a look at the narrators of this hadith would not be devoid of benefit:

Hakim bin Dawood bin Hakim:

Although he has not been authenticated anywhere in Rijal books, he has not been considered as weak and unreliable either. The author of Tahzib (Shaykh Tusi) has narrated hadith from him,[7]and Muhaddith Noori has introduced him as one of the masters (teachers) of Ibn Qulawayh. Ibn Qawlawayhi[8] has authenticated his (Hakim bin Dawud bin Hakim) teachers en masse in the beginning of his book where he says; “He (Hakim bin Dawud bin Hakim) does not mention anything in his book except that which he has come across from authentic sources.”[9] Therefore, it is sufficient that the general authentication about him is not encountered by any opposing statements that may consider him as weak.

Muhammad bin Musa Al-Hamadani:

Some have undermined his integrity saying that he is weak[10] but, as per late Ayatollah Khoei’s saying, Ibn Qulawayh has authenticated him and what he says in Kamil al-Ziyarat is opposed to the statements which consider Musa Al-Hamadani to be weak. Thus, the weakening or undermining and authenticating statements clash with each other as a result of which both the statements are rendered void and invalid. Hence, Muhammad bin Musa biographically talking becomes a person of unknown condition.[11]

We will write in detail about Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi and Muhammad bin Bazi’ in future.

Aqabah bin Qays Kufi:

He is Salih’s father, one of the companions of Imam Sadiq (a.s.). As far as know, he has neither been authenticated nor considered to be weak.[12]

Malik Al-Juhani:

Malik Al-Juhani, better known as Malik bin A’yun Al-Juhani is in the second chain of the tradition narrated from the Imam (a.s).  He is one of the companions of Imam Baqir (a.s) and as said by Shaykh Mufid, he was praised by the Imam.[13] Having examined the reliability of these narrators, the conclusion that we can draw is that if we cannot consider the chain of this tradition to be authentic, we cannot consider it to be weak either because according to some biographical standards, there is no problem in the chain of transmission of this tradition.

1 – 2. Misbahul Mutahajjid of Shaykh Tusi

Shaykh Tusi has narrated Ziyarat Ashura in the above book with two different chains of transmission:

1-2-1. First Chain of Transmission:

He says in the first chain of transmission:

روى محمد بن إسماعیل بن بزیع عن صالح بن عقبه و سیف بن عمیره عن علقمه بن محمد الحضرمى «قلت لأبى جعفر: علمنى دعاءً أدعو به ذلك الیوم إذا أنا زُرته من قرب، و دعاءً ادعو به إذا لم أَزَره مِن قُرب و أَومات مِن بَعد البلاد، و من دارى بالسلام إلیه.  قال: فقال لى یا علقمه إذا أنت صلیت ركعتین.

Muhammad ibn Ismail ibn Bazzi narrates from Salih ibn Uqbah who narrates Sayf bin Umayrah and he from Alqamah bin Muhammad Al-Hadhrami who narrates that he (Alqamah) asked Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s), “Teach me a dua to recite on this day when I make Ziyarat near to the shrine of Imam Hussain (a.s) and teach me a dua to recite when I want to make Ziyarat to him from faraway cities and from my home.”

'Alqama said: “He ( Imam Baqir (a.s.) said to me 'O 'Alqama, if you recite two units of prayer after gesturing towards him with greetings and salutations, then say these words after glorifying Allah.  And so if you say that, then you will have greeted and saluted him with words by which the angels greet him. And Allah will elavate you a million ranks and you will be like him who was martyred with Hussein (a.s.) and you will share with them in their ranks… recite 'Greetings to you, O Aba 'Abdillah. Greetings to you, O son of the Messenger of Allah….[14]

When it comes to the above chain of transmission, it is necessary to examine the following:

A) Shaykh Tusi’s Chain of Transmission up to Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’

Shaykh Tusi has obtained the above tradition from the book of Muhammad bin Isma'il bin Bazi' and Shaykh has mentioned his chain of authorities leading to Muhammad bin Isma'il bin Bazi' 's book in his Fehrist as follows:


Muhammad bin Bazi’ has written a book on Hajj. It was reported to us by Ibn Abi Jid, from Muhammad bin al-Hassan bin al-Walid, from 'Ali bin Ibrahim, from his father, from Muhammad bin Isma'il bin Bazi'.[15]

Therefore, in reality the chain of transmission of the narration will be as such:

Shaykh Tusi, Ali bin Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Abi Jid, from Muhammad bin al-Hassan bin al-Walid, from 'Ali bin Ibrahim Qummi, from Ibrahim, from Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’.

It can be said briefly that the reliability of all those who are in this chain of transmission has been accepted by all Rijal scholars. All these masters (Mashyekh) are trustworthy and there is no need to elaborate on the trustworthiness of these people.

We shall now discuss the first chain of the transmission in detail:

Ibn Abi Jid: His name is Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Abi Jid, known by the epithet Abu al-Hassan. He was one of the authorities and teachers of Najashi and Shaykh Tusi; the teachers of Najashi are all trustworthy and reliable. Late Ayatollah Khoei (r.a) says: “The chain of the transmission from Shaykh Tusi to Saffar are correct in books other than Basaaer; in fact, the chain of transmission in the said book is also as such based on the outward evidence because Ibn Abi Jid is in the chain and he is trustworthy. Ibn Abi Jid is one of Najashi’s masters.[16]

Muhammad bin Hassan bin Walid:

 He died in the year 343 A.H. (954 A.D.) and was among the important leaders and respected authorities of the (Imamiyya) sect, such that his integrity is beyond doubt. Shaykh Saduq learned the science of “biographical analysis” from him. This science is known as 'Ilm al-Ta'dil wa al- Tajrih. He praises him as such: “Abu Ja’far Muhammad bin Hassan bin Ahmad bin Walid was one of the great and renowned figures of Qom. He is trustworthy, reliable and a source of pride in every aspect.[17]

Ali bin Ibrahim al-Qummi: He was one of the authorities of the (Imamiya) sect, without equal, trustworthy and unrivalled in his integrity.[18]

Ibrahim bin Hashim: He is the first person who spread the Kufans’ tradition in Qom. He authored many books.[19] Allamah Hilli says: “The preferred view is that his saying (or report) is acceptable.”[20]

B) From Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’ to Alqamah bin Muhammad Al-Hadhrami

Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’:  He has narrated from two people and those two have narrated this tradition from Alqamah.

Late Najashi says: “He was from amongst the virtuous and trustworthy members of the (Imamiya) sect, and abundant in doing good deeds.”[21] He was from the companions of Abu al-Hassan (al-Kadhim), al-Ridha' and al-Jawad (a.s). Najashi further says: My father said to me: “Muhammad bin Ali bin Hussein said: Muhammad bin Ali Majilubah narrated from ... said:  We were in the company of Imam al-Ridha (a.s.) when someone spoke of Muhammad bin Ismail Bazi’. The Imam said: “I would love to see people like him amongst you.” [22] “Shaykh Tusi remarks concerning his character in his Rijal as follows: “reliable, veracious and a Kufan” (i.e. from Kufa in 'Iraq).[23]

However, when it comes to the two people from whom Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’ has narrated, i.e. Salih bin Uqba and Sayf bin Umayra, we must say:

Salih bin Uqba:

He is Salih bin 'Uqba bin Qays bin Sim'an, one of the companions of Imam Sadiq (a.s)[24]. Najashi introduces him as: Salih bin 'Uqba bin Qays bin Sim'an bin Abi Rabiha.[25] He narrates from his father, who in turn narrates from his own father and from Zayd bin Shahham.

Some scholars like late Sayyid Bahrul Ulum says: Shaykh Tusi and Najashi have made mention of his name in their books. They have not discussed about his religion and this shows that he was an Imami (follower of the twelve imams). [26]

Therefore according to a general rule regarding all that Najashi and Shaykh Tusi mention, Salih bin 'Uqba bin Qays bin Sim'an bin Abi Rabiha was an imami, for had he been other than that, then Najashi or Shaykh Tusi would have raised an objection about his sectarian affiliations, just as if there was a concern about his integrity, then he would have mentioned it. Yet, it is possible to prove his trustworthiness through other ways:

First: Those who narrate from him include: Muhammad bin Hussein bin Abi al-Khattab (262 A.H.) and his son (i.e. Salih's son) Isma'il bin Salih bin 'Uqba. This is a good piece of evidence showing his trustworthiness. That is because, it is very unlikely of people like Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’ to quote an unreliable person. In addition, Imam Al-Ridha (a.s.) said about him: “I would love to see people like him amongst you.”   However, the disparagement of Ibn al- Ghadhairi is not to be relied upon, for he has criticized many of our scholars and trustworthy people who were unparalleled and peerless in their integrity. Ibn al- Ghadhairi had some unique beliefs and ideas about the twelve Imams and whoever disregarded these views or narrated a tradition on the topic of the Imamate which did not agree with his beliefs, tended to be described by him as an extremist and as a liar, as in this speech: “extremist, liar, he is not to be paid any attention to.”[27] This is proof that his describing somebody with falsehood, was because of his (Ibn al- Ghadhairi's) suspicions of extremism.  Allamah Hilli has mentioned the above in his Rijal book.[28]

Late Ayatollah Khoei (r.a.) has rejected al-Ghadhairi’s statement firmly saying: The disparagement ascribed to Ibn al- Ghadhairi does not conflict with Ali bin Ibrahim’s authentication because we have proved that the book is not proved to be that of Ibn al- Ghadhairi. Hence, we conclude that Salih bin Uqbah is among the reliable individuals.[29]

Secondly: Shaykh Tusi and Najashi have provided references in their books to his book and this is an indication of their regard to his position. Therefore, it can be said that he is a praiseworthy and to some extent acceptable person. Conclusively, Salih bin Uqba is trustworthy and his narrations can be relied upon.

Sayf bin Umayra:

Sayf bin 'Umayra al-Nakha'i was an Arab, a Kufan and trustworthy. He reports from Abu 'Abdillah (the sixth Imam Sadiq (a.s.) and Abu al-Hasan (the seventh Imam Kadhim (a.s.). Najashi and Shaykh Tusi have authenticated him explicitly.[30]

In case we assume that trustworthiness of Salih bin Uqbah is not proved, it will not affect or undermine the authenticity of the narration because Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’ has narrated the text of the salutation from two person. If one of them is not proved to be trustworthy, it will not harm the authenticity of the narration due to the trustworthiness of the other narrator.

Alqamah bin Muhammad Al-Hadhrami:

He is one of the companions of Imam Baqir and Imam Sadiq (a.s).[31] There is no explicit statement about his veracity in the books of biographies. Only Shaykh Tusi says in regard to him: Alqama bin Muhammad al-Hadhrami Al-Kufi has been narrated from.[32] He has therefore not elucidated his reliability; rather other evidences prove his trustworthiness. Late Sayed Ali Boroujardi has concluded through Shaykh Tusi’s short statement and another report that he is reliable.[33]

There are other pieces of evidence showing that Alqamah is trustworthy. On the basis of the forthcoming analysis of the third chain below, through which Shaykh Tusi narrates the text of the salutation, it can be determined that Sayf bin 'Umayra, the trustworthy narrator (al-thiqa), complained to Safwan bin Mehran, also a trustworthy narrator (al-thiqa), that the supplication by which he supplicated, doesn't appear in the report of 'Alqama from al-Baqir (a.s.), whereupon Safwan excused himself and clarified that he had heard the supplication from Imam Sadiq (a.s.) during the course of the latter's pilgrimage to his ancestor Hussein (a.s.).

Thus Sayf's complaint at the absence of the supplication, and the response of Safwan that he had heard it from Imam Sadiq (a.s.), delineates from the acceptability of these two trustworthy men, the trustworthiness of 'Alqama bin Muhammad al-Hadhrami, for if not, then Sayf bin 'Umayra would not have advanced 'Alqama's report as an argument, and Safwan would not have responded to him that he had heard it (the supplication) from Imam Sadiq (a.s.).[34]

In other words, Safwan’s narration is clear in endorsing Ziyarat Ashura which Alqamah had narrated. The only difference is in the supplication after Ziyarat Ashura which Alqamah has narrated but Safwan has narrated it from Imam Sadiq (a.s.). Additionally, Kashi mentions in his biography book his brother’s (Abu Bakr Al-Hadhrami) discussion with Zayd bin Ali which indicates that both of the brothers believed firmly in the imamate of Imam Sadiq (a.s.).[35]

As of here, it has become clear that the chain of the transmission of Ziyarat Ashura is trustworthy. It should be noted that Shaykh Tusi has narrated Ziyarat Ashura through another chain of transmission which is mentioned as under:

1-2-2. The Second Chain of Transmission: The Chain to the Text of Ziyarat Ashura, as narrated by Shaykh Tusi

Shaykh Tusi reports: Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi narrated from Sayf bin 'Umayra who said; “I rode out with Safwan bin Mehran al-Jammal towards Najaf, and a group of our companions were with us. This was after Abu 'Abdillah (a.s.) (i.e. Imam Sadiq) had left. Later we set out for Medina from al-Hira.

When we had completed performing the pilgrimage rites, Safwan turned his face in the direction of the grave of Abu 'Abdillah (Hussein) (a.s.) and said to us: 'salute and greet al- Hussein (a.s.) from this place, from the place of the head of the grave of the Prince of the Believers, the blessings of Allah be upon him, for Abu 'Abdillah (Sadiq) (a.s.) pointed towards it (towards the grave of Hussein) from right here, and I was with him.”

He (Sayf bin 'Umayra) said: “Then Safwan recited the salutation, which 'Alqama bin Muhammad al-Hadhrami had narrated from Abu Ja'far al-Baqir (a.s.) for the day of 'Ashura.” At the end of the tradition, Sayf bin 'Umayra says; “So I asked Safwan: ''Alqama bin Muhammad al- Hadhrami did not narrate this supplication (dua). Rather he narrated only the text of the salutation!”

So Safwan replied: 'I arrived with my Master, Abu 'Abdillah Sadiq (a.s.) at this place and he acted in a similar way to how we acted in our pilgrimage rituals and he supplicated with this supplication when bidding farewell after having recited the ritual prayers which we had recited, and he bade farewell in the same manner as we bade farewell.”[36]

Thus the disagreement was regarding the supplication that is recited after the salutation, whereas there is no disagreement about the famous text of the salutation which Alqamah narrated from Imam Baqir (a.s) and which was used to address the Imam.

When it comes to this chain of transmission, we should say there is no question as to the trustworthiness of Sayf bin Umayra and Safwan bin Mehran[37]. Thus, there are only two issues that need to be discussed: One, the chain of the transmission from Shaykh Tusi to Muhammad bin Khalif Al-Tayalisi and another the trustworthiness of Muhammad bin Khalid.

A) The Chain of Transmission from Shaykh Tusi Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi:

There are two approaches in regard to the trustworthiness of the narrators till Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi.

First approach: The outward meaning of “Muhammad bin Khalid narrated” versus “it has been reported by Muhammad bin Khalid” proves the integrity and validity of Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi’s narration to Shaykh Tusi. This is enough to prove the validity of the chain of the narration.

Second approach: As far as we know, the above hadith has been cited from Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi’s book.  Shaykh Tusi has taken this tradition from the book of Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi and has mentioned his chain of transmission to this book in his Fehrist. He says: He (i.e. Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi) has a book which we have transmitted from Hussein bin Ubaidullah (al-Ghadhairi), from Ahmed bin Muhammad bin Yahya (the teacher of Shaykh Saduq), from his father (Muhammad bin Yahya al-'Attar al-Qummi), from Muhammad bin 'Ali bin Mahbub, from him (i.e. Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi).[38]

All of these individuals are the prominent and reliable figures of Imamiyah. That is to say, Shaykh Tusi's chain of transmission to the book (of Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi) is authentic and correct. Yet, we will examine the trustworthiness of these people as below:

Hussein bin Ubaidullah Al-Ghadhairi:

He is one of Shaykh Tusi[39] and Najashi’s teachers.[40] As we said earlier, there is no disagreement about Najashi’s teachers being trustworthy; they are reliable by consensus and they do not need authentication. Late Ayatollah Khoei says: “He is Najashi’s teacher and all of the teachers of Najashi are trustworthy.”[41]

Ahmed bin Muhammad bin Yahya:

In order to prove the trustworthiness of this narrator, we can turn to the following affirmations and corroborations:

1. Ahmed bin Muhammad bin Yahya is one of the teachers and authorities of Shaykh Saduq. Shaykh Saduq narrates from him with appreciation and satisfaction, and the teachers do not need further verification.

2. He is one of the masters of permission (mashayikh al-Ijaza). According to many a number of Rijal scholars, all the masters of permission are trustworthy. Late Allamah Bahrani says in this regard: “The masters of permission are at the highest position of trust and dignity.”[42] He further writes: “We should not entertain doubt about the masters’ being just.”[43]

3. Many scholars have considered his narrations as authentic and correct. They have authenticated him. For example, late Allamah Majlisi writes: Ahmad bin Al-Attar is among the masters of permission and scholars have treated his narrations as authentic. Shaykh Tusi narrates from him through Ibn Al-Ghadhairi and Ibn Abi Jid.[44]

Also, in the eighth benefit of his Khulasat al-Aqwal, Allamh Hilli corrects Shaykh Saduq’s chain to Abdur Rahman bin Abi Najran and Abdullah bin Abi Ya’fur where Ahmad bin Muhammad Yahya Al-‘Attar is in both the chains. This shows that Allamah Hilli had been confident about him being a trustworthy narrator.[45] Considering these details, there remains no doubt as to the trustworthiness of this narrator.

Muhammad bin Yahya Al-‘Attar:

He is Shaykh Kulayni’s teacher from whom Kulayni has narrated a lot of traditions. Late Najashi says about him: “Muhammad Abu Ja’far Al-‘Attar Al-Qummi is the teacher of our companions in his time; he is trustworthy, reliable and abundant in narrating traditions.[46] Shaykh Tusi says: Kulayni has narrated a lot of traditions from Muhammad bin Yahya Al-‘Attar; he is from Qum and abundant in narrating traditions.[47]

4. Muhammad bin Ali bin Mahbub:  Late Najashi describes him as such: “Muhammad bin Ali bin Mahbubu Al-Ash’ari Al-Qummi Abu Ja’far, the teacher of the Qummis of his time, is trustworthy, reliable, jurisprudent and correct in his religion.[48]

B) Trustworthiness of Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi:

To prove the trustworthiness of Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi, we will mention the following points:

Firstly, Muhammad bin Ali Mahbub – who is one of the prominent figures in Shi’ism – narrates from Muhammad bin Khalid. This indicates the former’s confidence and trust in the latter.

Secondly, Khalid Al-Tayalisi’s being in the chain of transmission of traditions narrated by prominent narrators indicates that the companions and disciples confided him.

Sayf bin Umayra and Muhammad bin Ma’ruf are among the prominent narrators who are also known as owners of principles. Muhammad bin Ja’far Razaz, who is among the reliable teachers, has mentioned his chain of transmission to these two narrators’ book on the authority of Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi. This shows Razaz’s trust and confidence in Al-Tayalisi.

Another principle (asl) is the principle of Raziq bin Zubair which Abdullah bin Ja’far bin Himyari has narrated from Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi and he from him. Also, Hamid bin Ziad – who have been authenticated by Shaykh Tusi and Najashi despite their being Waqifi – has narrated many Usul (principles) from Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi.

Thirdly, many trustworthy reporters, over and above to those named earlier, have narrated traditions from him. They are Sa’d bin Abdullah, Salmah bin Khattab (who have been proved to be trustworthy), son of Al-Tayalisi (Abdullah bin Muhammad bin Khalid), Ali bin Ibrahim, Ali bin Sulayman Al-Zarari, Muhammad bin Hasan Al-Saffar, Muhammad bin Hussein (the same Muhammad bin Hussein bin Abi Al-Khattab) and Mu’awiyah bin Hakim.[49]

Fourthly, Shaykh Tusi says in his Fehrist that: Hamid transmits many Usul from Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi (who is) also known by the epithet of Abu 'Abdillah.[50]

Obviously, this sentence concerning Khalid Al-Tayalisi is a great appreciation and praise of Khalid indicating his reliability. 

These are some of the strongest signs and indications of the trustworthiness of Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi. He has not been condemned or denounced by anyone including Ibn Al-Ghadairi who is known to have denounced erroneously many of the reliable narrators. Hence, there is no room to doubt the trustworthiness of Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi. The conclusion is that Shaykh Tusi's chain of transmission to the book (of Muhammad bin Khalid al-Tayalisi) is authentic and correct.

Here ends the analysis of the two chains of transmissions through which Shaykh Tusi reports the recommendation for the pilgrimage to the grave of Imam Hussein (a.s.). The conclusion that can be deduced is that Shaykh Tusi’s chain of transmission is correct and that we should not entertain any doubt about the trustworthiness of Alqamah bin Muhammad Al-Hadhrami also. As for the second chain of transmission, all narrators other than Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi are trustworthy and it can be said that Al-Tayalisi is among those narrators whose narrations are accepted because great teachers have narrated from him.[51]

It has become clear from the above that on the whole, late Shaykh Tusi has narrated two chains of transmission with more than one individual being in each category:

First category: Alqamah bin Muhammad Al-Hadhrami and Safwan bin Mehran Al-Jammal;

Second category: Sayf bin Umayra and Salih bin Uqbah;

Third category: Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’ and Muhammad bin Khalid Al-Tayalisi.

Even if Alqamah’s trustworthiness in the first category is confirmed, the chain of the transmission of the narration will be correct in the presence of Safwan in this category. As for the second category, if the trustworthiness of Salih bin Uqbah is not proved, the chain of the transmission will be rectified. As well, in the third chain of transmission, even if we assume that Muhammad bin Khalid is anonymous, the chain of transmission is correct and free of any problem with Muhammad bin Ismail being in it.[52]

The Two Texts of Ziyarat Ashura

Some have cast doubt and raised questions about the content of Ziyarat Ashura. We have dealt with those questions on this website. For further information, vide:

1. Index: Cursing all the Banu Umayyah, question 854 (site: 928)

2. Index: Cursing Yazid’s son in Ziyarat Ashura, question 8951 (site: 10087).


[1] - Ibn Qulawayh, Ja’far bin Muhammad, Kamil al-Ziyarat, pg. 325 – 328, one volume, Murtazawiyah Publications, Najaf, 1356 A.H.

[2] - وقد علمنا انا لا نحيط بجميع ما روي عنهم في هذا المعنى ولا في غيره، لكن ما وقع لنا من جهة الثقات من أصحابنا رحمهم الله برحمته ، ولا أخرجت فيه حديثا روي عن الشذاذ من الرجال، يؤثر ذلك عنهم عن المذكورين غير المعروفين بالرواية المشهورين بالحديث والعلم

Kamil al-Ziyarat, pg. 37.

[3] - وكذلك جعفر بن محمد بن قولويه فإنه صرح بما هو أبلغ من ذلك في أول مزاره Wasail al-Shi’ah (Aalulbayt), Al-Hurr Al-Amili, vol.30, pg. 202, Al-Faedah al-Sadesah min Khatemat Kitab al-Wasail.

[4] - حول أسانيد "كامل الزيارات" لابن قولويه، (على كل حال، فإن في المراجع و المجتهدين الحاليين من يرى وثاقة جميع الرواة في "الكامل" و منهم – مثل الأستاذ في الحوزة العلمية الشيخ جعفر السبحاني - من يقوي كلام المحدث النوري و يراه هو الصحيح و بالتالي لا يرى وثاقة أحد من رواة الكامل إلا الراوي الأول في كل سند).

[5] - Serat al-Nijat by Ayatollah Khoei with annotation by Ayatollah Tabrizi, vol.2, pg. 457:

 اما بالنسبة الى من ورد في أسانيد كامل الزيارات فقد رأينا أخيرا اختصاص التوثيق بخصوص المشايخ المروي عنهم بلا واسطة، و عليه فلم تثبت وثاقة الجوهري أيضا، و أما التمييز في الروايات المشتركة باشتراك الراوي و المروي عنه- على تقدير وثاقة الجوهري- فهو منتف طبعا فتسقط الرواية عن الاعتبار.

[6] - Mu’jam Rijal al-Hadith, vol.1, pg. 50:

فإنك ترى أن هذه العبارة واضحة الدلالة على أنه لا يروي في كتابه رواية عن المعصوم إلا وقد وصلت إليه من جهة الثقات من أصحابنا رحمهم الله.

[7] - Shaykh Tusi, al-Tahzib, vol.6, pg. 41, Mu’ajam Rijal al-Hadith, vol.2, pg. 186.

[8] - Khatemat Mustadrak al-Wasail, vol.3, pg. 251 – 256, Aalulbayt Institute, Qom, 1st edition, 1416 A.H.

[9] - Qamus al-Rijal, Vol 3, number, 2385

[10] - See: Mu’jam Rija al-Hadith, vol.15, pg. 297; Rijal al-Najashi, pg. 348; Fihrist al-Tusi, pg. 174 and 410.

[11] - Mu’jam Rijal al-Hadith, vol.17,pg. 283. As was explained, this is the earlier view of this great traditionist. As per his last viewpoint according to which Ibn Qulawayh’s first intermediary is authenticated, we cannot authenticate Muhammad bin Musa Al-Hamadani according to Qulawayh’s view. Basically, there is no ground for contradiction in this case.

[12] - Mu’jam Rijal al-Hadith, vol. 11, pg. 156.

[13] - See: Mu’jam Rijal al-Hadith, vol. 14, pg. 156 – 158; Farhang Kawthar, No. 72; Ma’khaz Shinasi Ziyarat Ashura, Mahdi Sultani Ranani.

[14] - Shaykh Tusi, Misbahul Mutahajjid, pg. 772, one volume, Fiqh al-Shi’ah Institute, Beirut, 1411 A.H.

[15] - Al-Fihrist by Shaykh Tusi, pg. 140, No. 594.  Else where he mentions another chain of transmission in regard to this book: Muhammad bin Ismail bin Bazi’ has many books including Kitab al-Hajj. We have been informed about it by Hussein bin Ubaidullah from al-Hassan bin Hamzah al-Alawi from Ali bin Ibrahim from his father from him. And we were informed about it by Ibn Abi Jid from Muhammad bin al-Hassan, from Sa’d, Al-Himyari, and Ahmad bin Idris  and Muhammad bin Yahya from Ahmad bin Miuhammad and Muhammad bin al-Hussein from him. Al-Fihrist al-Tusi, pg. 155, No. 691.

[16] - طريق الشيخ إليه [ صفار] صحيح في غير كتاب بصائر الدرجات، بل فيه أيضا على الأظهر ، فإن في طريقه ابن أبي جيد ، فإنه ثقة ، لأنه من مشايخ النجاشي Mu’jam Rijal al-Hadith, vol.15, pg. 250, Dariyat al-Noor Software.

[17] - محمد بن الحسن بن أحمد بن الوليد أبو جعفر شيخ القميين ، وفقيههم ، ومتقدمهم ، ووجههم . ويقال : إنه نزيل قم، وما كان أصله منها . ثقة ثقة، عين، مسكون إليه

Rijal al-Najashi, pg. 383, Dariyat al-Noor Software.

[18] - Najashi says:

ثقة في الحديث ثبت معتمد صحيح المذهب سمع فأكثر (و أكثر) و صنف كتبا و أضر في وسط عمره. و له كتاب التفسير.

Rijal al-Najashi, pg. 260;  The same authentication has been mentioned in Rijal of Ibn Dawood, pg. 237 and in al-Khulasa by Allamah Hilli, pg. 100.

[19] - Rijal al-Najashi, pg. 16, Fehrist al-Tusi, pg. 12.

[20] - [20]. و لم أقف لأحد من أصحابنا على قول في القدح فيه و لا على تعديله بالتنصيص و الروايات عنه كثيرة و الأرجح قبول قوله. Al-Khulasa by Allamah Hilli, pg. 5.

[21] - محمد بن إسماعيل بن بزيع أبو جعفر مولى المنصور أبي جعفر، وولد بزيع بيت، منهم حمزة بن بزيع . كان من صالحي هذه الطائفة وثقاتهم، كثير العمل؛ محمد بن اسماعيل ... .

[22] - أخبرنا والدي رحمه الله قال: أخبرنا محمد بن علي بن الحسين قال : حدثنا محمد بن علي ما جيلويه ، عن علي بن إبراهيم، عن أبيه ، عن علي بن معبد ، Rijal al-Najashi, Al-Najashi, pg. 330 – 332.

[23] - Rijal Al-Tusi, Al-Shaykh Al-Tusi, pg. 364.

[24] - Rijal Al-Tusi, chap. Companions of Imam Sadiq (a.s.), pg. 138.

[25] - Rijal Al-Najashi, pg. 200.

[26] - That is because according to Shaykh Tusi in his Fehrist and Najashi in his Rijal, the narrators from whom he narrates any hadith are from the Imamiyah sect.  If any of them are non-Imami, they would mention it.  Bahrul Ulum Tabatabai mentions this general rule as the tenth benefit in his book al-Fawaid al-Rijaliyya. He held the view that all those narrators whom Shaykh Tusi and Najashi mention in their (two) books (of Rijal) are from among the Shi'ite Imamiyya, of correct sectarian affiliation and praiseworthy in a general sense. These are the attributes, which qualified them to be mentioned among the scholarly authors:

فائدة الظاهر أن جميع من ذكر الشيخ في (الفهرست) من الشيعة الإمامية إلا من نص فيه على خلاف ذلك من الرجال : الزيدية ، والفطحية ، والواقفية وغيرهم، كما يدل عليه وضع هذا الكتاب ، فإنه في فهرست كتب الأصحاب ومصنفاتهم ، دون غيرهم من الفرق.

وكذا ( كتاب النجاشي ) . فكل من ذكر له ترجمة في الكتابين، فهو صحيح المذهب ممدوح بمدح عام يقتضيه الوضع لذكر المصنفين العلماء والاعتناء بشأنهم وشان كتبهم ، وذكر الطريق إليهم ، وذكر من روى عنهم ومن رووا عنه.

ومن هذا يعلم أن إطلاق الجهالة على المذكورين في ( الفهرست ) و ( رجال النجاشي ) من دون توثيق أو مدح خاص، ليس على ما ينبغي .

Al-Sayyid Bahrul Ulum, Al-Fawaed al-Rijaliyah, vol.4, pg.111, 116. 

[27] - Ibn al-Ghadhairi,  vol.1, pg. 69.

[28] - Al-Khulasa, pg. 230.

[29] - أقول: لا يعارض التضعيف المنسوب إلى ابن الغضائري ، توثيق علي بن إبراهيم ، لما عرفت غير مرة من أن نسبة الكتاب إلى ابن الغضائري لم تثبت ، فالرجل من الثقات . Mu’jam Rija al-Hadith, Al-Sayyid al-Khoei, vol.1, pg. 85 – 86.

[30] - سيف بن عميرة ، ثقة ، كوفي نخعي عربي . له كتابAl-Fehrist, Al-Shaykh Al-Tusi, pg. 140, Najashi says: “Sayf bin Umayra al-Nakha'i was an Arab, a Kufan and trustworthy. He reports from Abu 'Abdillah (a.s.) and Abu al-Hasan (a.s.). He possessed a book and a group of our companions narrate from it.” Al-Najashi, pg. 189.

[31] - Rijal Al-Tusi, pg. 140 and 262. 

[32] - Rijal Al-Tusi, Al-Shaykh Al-Tusi, pg. 262.

[33] - He says: علقمة بن محمد الحضرمي الكوفي، أسند عنه "ق" وهو أخو أبي بكر الحضرمي كما في " قر " وكان علقمة أكبر من أخيه كما في حديث بكار عن أبيه عبد الله وعمه علقمة ، وحكى فيه مناظرة أبيه مع زيد، وفيه اشعار على حسنه وكونه اماميا ثابت الاعتقاد. Taraef al-Maqal, Al-Sayyid Ali Al-Boroujardi, vol.1, pg. 527.

[34] - Misbahul Mutahajjid, pg. 777, 781.

[35] - Rijal al-Kashi, pg. 416, and 417, Dariyat al-Noor Software.

[36] - وروى محمد بن خالد الطيالسي عن سيف بن عميرة قال : خرجت مع صفوان بن مهران الجمال وعندنا جماعة من أصحابنا إلى الغري بعد ما خرج أبو عبد الله عليه السلام فسرنا من الحيرة إلى المدينة فلما فرغنا من الزيارة صرف صفوان وجهه إلى ناحية أبي عبد الله الحسين عليه السلام فقال...   Misbahul Mutahajjid, pg. 777.

[37] - Safwan bin Mehran is one the companions of Imam Sadiq (a.s), and Imam Kazem (a.s.). He is trustworthy. Rijal al-Najashi, pg. 198.

[38] - محمد بن خالد الطيالسي. له كتاب. رويناه عن الحسين بن عبيد الله عن أحمد بن محمد بن يحيى عن أبيه عن محمد بن علي بن محبوب عن محمد بن خالد Fehrist al-Tusi, pg. 421, No. 649.

[39] - Late Shaykh Tusi also says: الحسين بن عبيد الله الغضائري، يكنى أبا عبد الله، كثير السماع ، عارف بالرجال ، وله تصانيف ذكرناها في الفهرست ، سمعنا منه وأجاز لنا بجميع رواياته ، مات سنة أحدي عشره وأربعمائة. Rijal Al-Tusi, Al-Shaykh Tusi, pg. 425.

[40] - Late Najashi says:  الحسين بن عبيد الله بن إبراهيم الغضائري أبو عبد الله، شيخنا رحمه الله Rijal Al-Najashi, Al-Najashi, pg. 69.

[41] - أنه شيخ النجاشي وجميع مشايخه ثقات  Mu’jam Rijal Al-Hadith, Al-Sayyid Al-Khoei, vol.7, pg. 23.  

[42] - مشايخ الإجازة في أعلى طبقات الوثاقة والجلالة Me’raj Ahl Al-Kamal, pg. 44.

[43] - إنّه لا ينبغي أن يرتاب في عدالة شيوخ الإجازة. Me’raj Ahl Al-Kamal, pg. 88. For further information in this regard, see: Al-Fawaed al-Rijaliyah, pg. 44 published at the closing section of Al-Khaqani’s Rijal; Al-Shahid Al-Thani, pg. 192 – 193; Mirdamad Muhammad Baqir Al-Husseini Al-Astarabadi, pg. 261.

[44] - احمد بن محمد بن يحيي العطار، من مشايخ الإجازة، و حكم الأصحاب بصحة حديثه، يروي عنه الشيخ بتوسط ابن الغضائري و ابن أبي جيد. Al-Wajiza fi ‘Ilm al-Rijal, pg. 154.

[45] - For further information in this regard, see: “Al-Re’ayah fi ‘Ilam a-Dirayah (hadith) Al-Shahid al-Thani, pg. 371; Mirdamad Muhammad Baqir Al-Husseini al-Astarabadi, pg. 171 – 172; Al-Bahai Al-Amili, pg. 276.

[46] - Rijal Al-Najashi, Al-Najashi, pg. 353.

[47] - Rijal Al-Tusi, Al-Shaykh Al-Tusi, pg. 439.

[48] - Rijal Al-Najashi, Al-Najashi, pg.349

[49] - Mu’jam Rijal Al-Hadith, vol.17, pg. 76.

[50] - Rijal Al-Tusi, Al-Shaykh Al-Tusi, pg. 441.

[51] - For further information, see: Azarakhshi Digar az Asman Karbala, Muhammad Taqi Mesbah Yazdi.

[52] - For further information, see: Answers to questions concerning Ziyarat Ashura.


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