Biography of Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq رضي الله عن
HIS POSITION IN THE SILSILA: Hadrat Sayyiduna Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu is the Sixth Imam and Shaykh of the Silsila Aaliyah Qadiriyah Barakatiyah Ridawiyyah Nooriyah. Much has been said in his praise by many great scholars.
BIRTH: He was born on a Monday, the 7th of Rabi ul Awwal in either 80 or 83 Hijri in Madinah Munawwarah. [Masaalik as-Saalikeen, Vol.1, Page 217]
HIS NAME: His name was Jaafar bin Muhammad, and he was also known as Abu Abdullah and Abu Ismaeel. His titles were Saadiq, Faadil and Taahir.
HIS MOTHER: His mother’s name was Umm-e-Fardah who was the daughter of Hadrat Qasim Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu, the grandson of Hadrat Abu Bakr Siddique Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu and Hadrat Qasim’s Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu mother, A’asma Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu is the daughter of Hadrat Abdur Rahmaan, the son of Hadrat Abu Bakr Siddique Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu.
HIS FEATURES: He was very handsome and had a radiant appearance. He had the perfect height, and was tan in complexion. He encompassed the exemplary qualities his forefathers. Haafiz Abu Nuaim Isfahani narrates in Khalifatul Abraar on the authority of Umar bin Midqaam, “When I used to look at Hadrat Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu then I used to immediately feel that he was from amongst the descendants of the Prophets”
EXCELLENCE: He was without doubt the true successor to the Muslim empire and one of the greatest Imams of his era. Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu was a great Aabid and Sufi. Many secrets of Tasawwuf were explained by him. It is in Tabqaatul Abraar, that he received the authority of Hadith from his blessed father, from Imam Zuhri and Naaf’i and ibn Munkadir etc. and Sufyaan Sawri, Ibn Ainiyyah, Shu’ba, Yahya Al Qataan, Imam Maalik and his son Imam Moosa Kaazim (ridwaanullahi ta aala alaihim ajmaeen) attained this authority of Hadith from him. Allama Ibn Hajar Makki Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu writes in Sawaa’iq Muhariqa . “The exalted Imams such as Yahya Bin Saeed, Ibn Jareeh, Imam Maalik ibn Anas, Imam Sufyaan Sawri, Sufyan bin Ainiyyah, Imam Abu Hanifa and Abu Ayoob Sajistani (ridwaanullahi ta aala alaihim ajmaeen) took Hadith from him.” [Masaalik as-Saalikeen]
HIS CHARACTER: He was a very exalted and pious personality. His inner and outer appearance exuded brightness and radiance. He addressed the poor and the downtrodden with great love. Once he called all his servants and said, “Let us give our hands in the hands of one another and promise that whichever one of us first receives salvation on the day of Qiyaamah, he will intercede for the rest of us.” On hearing this, they said, “O Ibn Rasool SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam! For what reason do you need our intercession, when your beloved forefather Rasoolullah SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam will intercede for the entire creation?” He then said, “I am ashamed to take my deeds and stand before my forefather, the Holy Prophet SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam.”
Once Hadrat Dawood Taa’ee Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu came to Hadrat Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu and said, “Beloved descendant of the Prophet SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam please give some advice, as my heart has become dark.” Hadrat Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said, “O Abu Sulaiman! You are great Zaahid of your era. What need do you have for my advice?” Hadrat Dawood Taa’ee Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said, “O descendant of the Prophet SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam, You have been blessed with excellence amongst people and to advise everyone is compulsory upon you.” He then said, “O Abu Sulaiman! I fear that on the day of Qiyaamah, my forefather Muhammadur Rasoolullah SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam will hold me by my collar and ask, ‘Why were you slow in fulfilling your right to submission?’ What will I say then? Thus, this deed (of advice) does not depend on ones stature or family lineage, but it deals with good deeds which are done in the Court of Allah.” Hadrat Dawood Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu heard this and began to weep. He then said, “O Allah! When such a great personality, who is the descendant of a Prophet SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam, and whose reality is filled with light and wisdom, and whose great grandmother is Bibi Faatima, is so afraid of his future and condition, then what right does Dawood Taa’ee have do be proud of his deeds?” [Masaalik as-Saalikeen]
HIS IBAADAT: He was well known for his ibaadat, and his striving in the Court of Allah. Hadrat Imam Malik Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu says, “I spent a very long time serving him, and I always found him in one of three Ibaadats. Either he was in namaaz, or engrossed in recitation of the Quran, or he would be fasting.” He never narrated any Hadith Shareef without wudhu. [Tazkirat al-Awliya]
HIS DUA: He was without doubt a faithful servant of Allah, and he always attained everything that he asked for from the Court of Allah. Abul Qasim Tabri narrates from Wahab, that he heard Laith bin Sa’ad Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu saying, “I was on my way to Hajj by foot in 113 Hijri and I reached Makkah Muazammah. I reached Jabl Abu Qais close to the time of Asr Salaah. There, I saw a pious man sitting (in seclusion), making dua. He was saying ‘Ya Rabbi Ya Rabbi’ so many times, that breathing became difficult. Then in the same way, he said ‘Ya Hayy Ya Hayy’ then ‘Ya Rab’bahu Ya Rab’bahu, then in the same say, he said ‘Ya Allah Ya Allah’ in one breath continuously. He then said ‘Ya Rahmaanu Ya Rahmaanu, Ya Raheemu Ya Raheemu’ and then he went on to say ‘Ya Arhamar Raahimeen’. He then said, “O Allah I desire to eat grapes. Please bless me with some, and my clothes have become old and tattered Please give me new ones.”
Hadrat Laith says, “By Allah, he was still competing his dua, when I saw a basket of grapes kept before him, whereas it was not event the grape season and I did not see an grapes near him before his dua. I also saw that there were two pieces of cloth kept near the grapes. I have never seen such beautiful material before. He then sat down to eat the grapes. I went up to him and said, Huzoor! May I also have a part in this?, and he asked how this was so, so I said, I was saying Aameen as you made the dua. He said, ‘Well then, step forward and join me.’ I also began to partake in the grapes. They were so tasty, that never have I eaten such delicious grapes. I ate until I was satisfied, but the basket still remained as it was before, full of grapes. He then offered on piece of cloth to me, and I said that I had no need for it, so he tied one around his waist, and he draped the other over his shoulder. He then descended from the mountain and I followed him. As he drew close to Saffa and Marwa, a beggar called out to him and said, ‘O Descendant of the Prophet SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam! Give these clothes to me and Allah will dress you in the clothes of Jannat.” He immediately gave the two pieces of cloth to the beggar. (On seeing this), I enquired about the identity of this pious man from the beggar, who informed me that he was Hadrat Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu. I then looked for him so that I may listen to some words of wisdom from him and attain his blessings, but he had disappeared from my sight.” [Tazkirat al-Awliya, Page 12]
Once, some people saw that Hadrat Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu was wearing a very expensive robe. One of them walked up to him and said, “Huzoor! It is not good for the Ahle Bait to wear such expensive clothing.” He caught hold of the man’s hand and thrust it into his sleeves. The man was amazed when he found that a Hadrat was wearing clothes make from sacks under his robe. Hadrat Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu then said, “The one inside is for my Creator and the one on top is for the creation.”
A man once lost his purse which contained one thousand dinaars. Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu was walking close to him, so he held the hand of the Imam and accused him of stealing his money. Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu asked how much he had in his money bag, and the man said that he had one thousand dinaars. Hadrat took him home and gave him one thousand dinaars from his wealth. The next day, the man found his money bag, and came rushing to Hadrat Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu to return the money he had taken from him. Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said, “We do not take back what we have already given.” The man then asked some people who this person was, and he was told that it was Hadrat Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu. When he heard this, he became very sad and regretted his behavior. [Tazkirat al-Awliya]
DEBATE WITH AN ATHEIST: Hadrat Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu spent a lot of his time spreading the word of Allah and His Rasool SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam. He always spoke against those who did not believe in Allah. An atheist from Egypt came to Hadrat Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu whilst he was in Makkah. Hadrat Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu asked his name and he said that his name was Abdul Malik and he was also known as Abdullah. On hearing this Hadrat said, “Malik, whose servant you are, is he from the Kingdom of the Skies or the Kingdom of the earth, the Lord that is the Lord of your son, is he the Lord of the skies or the Lord of the Earths?” The atheist could not answer this question. Hadrat then said, “Did you ever journey under the earth? Do you know what is beyond it?” He replied in the negative and said, “I think there is nothing beyond it.” Hadrat then said to him, “Thinking is not sufficient! However, have you ever flown into the skies and journeyed beyond the skies?” Again he replied in the negative. Hadrat said, “Did you ever travel the entire East and West and did you realise anything about the future from this?” Again he answered in the negative. Hadrat said, “I am amazed, that you are not aware of the earth and what is beneath it, and the sky and what is beyond it, and in this state of ignorance, you still have the arrogance to reject the existence of Allah. O Ignorant man! There is no argument for one who is naive about that which is a reality. The sun, the moon, the night and day, are all in a specific pattern. Verily they are within some divine control. If they were free, then they would move as they willed and would sometimes go to an appointed spot and not return. Why is it that the night does not take the place of day and the day does not take the place of night? Do you not ponder upon the reality of the skies and the earth? Why does the sky not come to the earth and why is it that the earth is not flattened by the sky? There is definitely ONE, who has all this in His Divine Control. It is He (Allah) who is All Powerful. It is He, who is our and their Lord.” When the atheist heard this, he immediately accepted Islam and had faith in the existence of Allah.
HADRAT BAYAZEED BUSTAAMI: Hadrat Ba Yazeed Bustaami Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu used to distribute water in the Darbaar of Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu. Hadrat placed his saintly sight on Hadrat Bayazeed Bustaami Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu once, and he became one of the greatest mystics of his time. He then served in the Court of Hadrat Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu and became one of the greatest Awliya.
IMAM-E-AZAM ABU HANIFA: Hadrat Imam Azam Abu Hanifa Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu attained great blessings from Hadrat Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu. It is narrated that once he asked Imam Abu Hanifa Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu concerning who is an intelligent person. Hadrat Imam Abu Hanifa Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said, “He who can differentiate between good and evil is an intelligent man.” Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said, “Even animals have the ability to differentiate. It can differentiate between those who love them, beat them or instill fear in them?” Imam Abu Hanifa Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu then said, “O Hadrat! Would you please explain who is truly intelligent?” Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said, “An intelligent person, is one who can differentiate between two good things and two evils, so that he may choose the better of two good things and that he may be able to repel the worse of two evils.”
SHAYKH-E-TARIQAT: He was the mureed and Khalifa of Hadrat Sayyiduna Imam Baaqir Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu and attained great blessings from his beloved father.
KARAAMATS: Hadrat Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu is an example for Muslims in every way. His greatest Karaamat was his firmness on the Shariat. His every step was in accordance with the Sunnat of the Prophet SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam. A few of his Karaamats are being quoted below.
A MANSION IN JANNAH: Once, a man came to Hadrat Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu before journeying for Hajj. He gave Hadrat 10,000 dirhams, and asked him to purchase a mansion for him before he returned. Instead of purchasing a mansion, Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu distributed the entire 10,000 dirhams in the way of Allah. After the man returned from Hajj, he went to meet Hadrat Imam Jaafar Saadiq Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu. Hadrat Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu told him that he had purchased his mansion and then handed the title deed over to him. The title deed read as follows : “One wall of the house is adjoined to the house of the Prophet SallAllahu Alaihi wa Sallam, the other wall is adjoined to the house of Hadrat Ali Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu, the third wall is adjoined to the house of Imam Hassan Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu and the fourth wall is adjoined to the house of Imam Hussain Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu.” The man took this title deed, and asked his family members to place it in his grave when he passed away. After his demise, his family members found the title deed on the top of his grave and on the rear of the title deed the following words were written,
“Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu was honest and loyal in what he said.” [Masaalik as-Saalikeen, Vol.1, Page 220]
AMAZING INCIDENT: Once, he was on his way to Hajj, when he stopped to rest under a date tree which was completely dried out. At the time of Chasht, he asked the tree to present him with some dates. Immediately, the tree became green and lush and full of dates. Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu then ate from it. A villager was passing by and saw this. He saw this great karaamat and said that it was magic. Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said,
“This is not magic. Almighty Allah has blessed me with such a quality, that he accepts all my duas. If I make dua, even you can be transformed into a dog.” Hadrat had not yet completed what he was saying, when the villager began to resemble a dog. He quickly repented and asked Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu to forgive him. Hadrat made dua for him, and he was transformed to his normal self. [Masaalik as-Saalikeen, Vol.1, Page 223]
KHALIFA MANSOOR: Khalifa Mansoor once sent one of his ministers to summon Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu to his Court. He informed his servants that when Imam Jaafar arrived, they should wait for him (Mansoor) to remove his crown. The moment he did this, they should martyr Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu. When the minister heard this, he was not pleased and thus tried to explain to Mansoor, how wrong it was to kill a pious person, who is also a Sayyid. The Khalifa did not take heed and had Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu summoned. When Hadrat Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu arrived, the servants waited for their cue, so that they may martyr Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu. Instead, Mansoor woke up from his throne and rushed towards the Imam. He brought him towards his throne and allowed him to sit on it with great respect, whilst he sat on the ground in front of the great Imam. The servants and ministers were surprised to see this sudden change in plan. Mansoor then asked the Imam if he had any requests. Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu said,”In future you should not summon me to your court, as I wish to remain engrossed in Ibaadat.”
When he heard these words, his body began to tremble and he allowed the Imam to leave with respect. When the Imam left, the minister asked about the sudden change in plan and Mansoor said, “When Imam Jaafar Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu entered my court, I saw a huge python with him. The python had its one lip over my throne and one under my throne, and it spoke to me and said that if I tried to ever harm the Imam, then he would consume me with my throne, and that is why I behaved in the manner which I did.”
HIS CHILDREN: He was blessed with six sons and one daughter. Their names are :
1. Hadrat Ismaeel
2. Hadrat Muhammad
3. Hadrat Ali
4. Hadrat Abdullah
5. Hadrat Ishaaq
6. Hadrat Moosa Kaazim
7. Bibi Umm-e-Fardah (Ridwaanullahi Ta’ala Alaihim Ajma’een)
HIS KHULAFA: If one studies the books of history, then one will learn about his Khulafa, and how exalted each one of them was and how they had attained his blessings. Some of them are:
1. Hadrat Imam Moosa Kaazim Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu
2. Hadrat Imam Azam Abu Hanifa Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu
3. Hadrat Sultaan Bayazeed Bustaami Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu
WISAAL: He passed away during the rule of the second Abbasi Khalifa Abu Jaafar Mansoor bin Abul Abbas As Safah on a Friday, the 15th of Rajab or 24 Shawwal 148 Hijri at the age of 68 in Madinatul Munawwarah. [Masaalik as-Saalikeen, Vol.1, Page 217]
MAZAAR SHAREEF: His Mazaar Shareef is in Jannat al-Baqi in Madinatul Munawwarah.
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Tadhkira Mashaikh-e-Qadiriyah Barakatiya Ridawiyah
Urdu: Mawlana Abdul Mujtaba Ridawi | English: Mawlana Aftab Qasim