Concerning the Chain of Authorities of the Sahifa
Al-Sahifa al-Kamilah al-Sajjadiyya
(The Perfect Book of al-Sajjad)
In the Name of God, the All-merciful, the All-compassionate
[Preface: Concerning the Chain of Authorities of the Sahifa]
1-The greatest sayyid, Najm al-Din Baha' al-Sharaf Abu l-Hasan
Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn 'Ali ibn Muhammad ibn 'Umar ibn Yahya
(God have mercy upon him) related to us:2
2-He said: The felicitous shaykh, Abu 'Abd Allah Muhammad ibn
Ahmad ibn Shahriyar3,
the treasurer of the treasure-house of our master, the Commander of
the Faithful, 'Ali ibn Abi Talib (upon him be peace) told us in the
month of Rabi' I in the year 516 [May-June 1122 CE] while [the
Sahifa] was being read before him and I was listening.
3-He said: I heard it [being read] before the truthful shaykh Abu
Mansur Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn 'Abd al-'Aziz al-'Ukbari
(God have mercy upon him) by Abu l-Mufaddal Muhammad ibn 'Abd Allah
ibn al-Muttalib al-Shaybani.5
4-He said: Al-Sharif Abu 'Abd Allah Ja'far ibn Muhammad ibn
Ja'far ibn al-Hasan ibn Ja'far ibn al-Hasan ibn al-Hasan ibn Amir
al-Mu'minin 'Ali ibn Abi Talib6
(upon them be peace) related to us.
5-He said: 'Abd Allah ibn 'Umar ibn Khattab al-Zayyat7
related to us in the year 265 [878-9].
6-He said: My maternal uncle 'Ali ibn al-Nu'man al-A'lam8
related to me.
7-He said: 'Umayr ibn Mutawakkil al-Thaqafi al-Balkhi related to
us from his father Mutawakkil ibn Harun.9
8-He said: I met Yahya ibn Zayd ibn 'Ali (upon him be peace) when
he was going to Khurasan after his father was slain and I greeted
9-He said to me: From whence are you coming? I said: From the
10-He asked me about his household and the sons of his paternal
uncle in Medina and he pressed me urgently about [Imam] Ja'far ibn
Muhammad (upon him be peace), so I gave him news of him and of them
and of their sorrow over his father Zayd ibn 'Ali (upon him be
11-He said to me: My paternal uncle [Imam] Muhammad [al-Baqir]
ibn 'Ali (upon him be peace) advised my father not to revolt and he
let him know what would be the outcome of his affair if he revolted
and left Medina. Have you met the son of my paternal uncle, Ja'far
ibn Muhammad (upon him be peace)?
I said: Yes.
12-He said: Did you hear him mention anything about my affair?
I said: Yes.
13-He said: What did he say about me? Tell me!
I said: May I be made your sacrifice! I do not want to confront
you with what I heard from him.
14-So he said: Will you frighten me with death? Tell me what you
I said: I heard him saying that you would be slain and crucified
as your father was slain and crucified.
15-His face changed colour and he said: God erases whatsoever He
will, and He establishes, and with Him is the Mother of the Book!11
O Mutawakkil! God has supported this affair through us and appointed
for us knowledge and the sword. These two are combined in us, while
the sons of our paternal uncle have been singled out only for
16-I said: May I be made your sacrifice! Surely I see people
inclining more to the son of your paternal uncle, Ja'far (upon him
be peace) than to you and your father.
17-He said: Surely my paternal uncle Muhammad ibn 'Ali and his
son Ja'far (upon them both be peace) summon people to life, but we
summon them to death.
18-I said: O son of the Messenger of God! Have they more
knowledge, or have you?
19-He looked toward the ground for a time. Then he lifted his
head and said: All of us have knowledge, but they know everything we
know, and we do not know everything they know. Then he said to me:
Have you written anything from the son of my paternal uncle?
I said: Yes.
20-He said: Show it to me. So I brought out various kinds of
knowledge, and I brought out for him a supplication which had been
dictated to me by Abu 'Abd Allah (upon him be peace). He had related
to me that his father, Muhammad ibn 'All (upon them both be peace)
had dictated it to him and had told him that it was one of the
supplications of his father, 'Ali ibn al-Husayn (upon them both be
peace), from Al-Sahifat al-Kamila.12
21-Yahya looked at it until he came to its end. He said to me:
Will you permit me to copy it?
I said: O son of the Messenger of God! Do you ask permission for
that which belongs to all of you?
22-He said: Truly I will bring out for you a sahifa with the
Perfect Supplications, which my father had in safekeeping from his
father. My father counselled me to safeguard it and to withhold it
from those unworthy of it.
23-'Umayr said: My father [Mutawakkil] said: So I stood up before
him, kissed him on the head, and said to him: By God, O son of the
Messenger of God! I profess the religion of God through love for you
and obedience toward you! I hope that He will favour me in my life
and my death with your friendship.
24-So he tossed the page of mine which I had given to him to a
servant who was with him and said: Write this supplication with a
beautiful, clear script, and give it to me. Perhaps I will memorize
it, for I had been seeking it from Ja'far (God safeguard him) and he
withheld it from me.
25-Mutawakkil said: So I regretted what I had done and did not
know what I should do. Abu 'Abd Allah had not ordered me not to hand
it over to anyone.
26-Then he called for a box and brought out from it a sahifa
locked and sealed.13
He looked at the seal, kissed it, and wept. Then he broke it and
undid the lock. He opened the sahifa, placed it upon his eyes, and
passed it across his face.
27-He said: By God, O Mutawakkil, were it not for the words you
mentioned from the son of my paternal uncle - that I will be slain
and crucified - I would not hand this over to you and would be
niggardly with it.
28-But I know that his word is the truth which he has taken from
his fathers and that it will be verified. So I fear lest knowledge
like this fall to the Umayyads and they hide it and store it in
their treasuries for themselves.
29-So take it, guard it for me, and wait with it. Then, when God
has accomplished in my affair and the affair of those people what He
will accomplish, it will be a trust from me with you to be taken to
the sons of my paternal uncle, Muhammad and Ibrahim,14
the two sons of 'Abd Allah ibn al-Hasan ibn al-Hasan ibn Ali (upon
the [last] two of them be peace). They will undertake this affair
30-Mutawakkil said: So I took the Sahifa. when Yahya ibn Zayd was
slain, I went to Medina and met [Imam] Abu 'Abd Allah [Ja'far
al-Sadiq] (upon him be peace). I related to him the news of Yahya.
He wept and his feeling for him was intense.
31-He said: God have mercy on the son of my paternal uncle and
join him to his fathers and grandfathers!
32-By God, O Mutawakkil, the only thing that prevented me from
handing the supplication over to him was what he feared for the
Sahifa of his father. Where is the Sahifa? I said: Here it is. He
opened it and said:
This, by God, is the handwriting of my paternal uncle Zayd and
the supplications of my grandfather 'Ali ibn al-Husayn (upon both of
them be peace).
33-Then he said to his son: Stand up, O Isma'il,15
and bring out the supplications which I commanded you to memorize
34-So Isma'il stood up, and he brought out a Sahifa just like the
Sahifa which Yahya ibn Zayd had handed over to me. Abu 'Abd Allah
kissed it and placed it upon his eyes. He said: This is the
handwriting of my father and the dictation of my grandfather (upon
both of them be peace), while I was a witness.
35-I said: O son of the Messenger of God! Would it be proper for
me to compare it to the Sahifa of Zayd and Yahya?
He gave me permission to do that and said: I consider you worthy
36-I looked, and I found the two to be a single thing. I did not
find a single letter to differ from what was in the other Sahifa.
37-Then I asked permission from Abu 'Abd Allah to hand over the
Sahifa to the two sons of 'Abd Allah ibn al-Hasan.
He said: God commands you to deliver trusts back to their
Yes, hand it over to them.
38-When I rose to go and meet them, he said to me: Stay in your
39-Then he sent for Muhammad and Ibrahim, and they came. He said:
This is the inheritance of the son of your paternal uncle, Yahya,
from his father. He has singled you out for it instead of his own
brothers. But we place upon you a condition concerning it.
40-They said: God have mercy upon you! Tell us, for your word is
41-He said: Leave not Medina with this Sahifa!
42-They said: And why is that?
43-He said: The son of your paternal uncle feared for it what I
fear for you.
44-They said: He only feared for it when he came to know he would
45-Abu 'Abd Allah (upon him be peace) said: As for you - feel not
secure! By God, I know that you will revolt as he revolted, and you
will be slain as he was slain!
46-They arose, while they were saying: 'There is no force and no
strength save in God, the All-high, the All-mighty!'17
47-When they revolted Abu 'Abd Allah (upon him be peace) said to
me: O Mutawakkil! What did Yahya say to you? 'Surely my paternal
uncle Muhammad ibn 'Ali and his son Ja'far summon the people to
life, but we summon them to death.'
48-I said: Yes, God set you right! The son of your paternal uncle
Yahya said that to me.
49-He said: God have mercy upon Yahya! My father related from his
father from his grandfather from 'Ali (upon him be peace) that the
Messenger of God (God bless him and his Household) was seized from
his senses for an instant while he was on the pulpit.
50-He saw in a vision some men leaping upon his pulpit like
monkeys and making the people retrace their steps.
51-So the Messenger of God sat down (God bless him and his
Household), and sorrow was apparent on his face.
52-Then Gabriel (upon him be peace) came to him with this verse:
And We made the vision that We showed thee and the tree cursed in
the Qur'an, that is, the Umayyads, to be only a trial for men; and
We frighten them, but it only increases them in great insolence.18
53-He said: O Gabriel! Will they be in my period and my time?
54-He said: No, but the mill of Islam will turn from your
migration, and it will come to a halt ten [years] after that. Then
it will begin turning exactly thirty-five years after your
migration, and come to a halt five [years] after that. Then there is
no avoiding a mill at whose axis stands error. Then there will be
the kingdom of the pharoahs.
55-He said: God sent down concerning that: Surely We sent it down
on the Night of Decree. And what will teach thee what is the Night
of Decree? The Night of Decree is better than a thousand months19
in which the Umayyads rule, during which time there will be no Night
56-He said: So God gave news to His Prophet (upon him be peace)
that the Umayyads would own sovereignty over this community and that
their kingdom would last this period of time.
57-Were the mountains to vie with them, they would tower over the
mountains until God (exalted is He) gave permission for the
disappearance of their kingdom; and during this time they have made
their banner enmity and hatred for us, the Folk of the House.
58-God gave news to His Prophet concerning what the Folk of the
House of Muhammad, the people of love for them, and their partisans
would meet from the Umayyads during their days and their kingdom.
59-He said: God sent down concerning them: Hast thou not seen
those who exchanged the favour of God for unbelief, and caused the
people to dwell in the abode of ruin? Gehenna, wherein they are
roasted; an evil resting place!20
60-The 'favour of God' is Muhammad and the People of his House.
Love for them is a faith that takes into the Garden, and hate for
them is an unbelief and a hypocrisy that takes into the Fire.
61-So the Messenger of God (God bless him and his Household)
confided that to 'Ali and the Folk of his House.
62-He said: Then Abu 'Abd Allah said (upon him be peace): Before
the rise of our Qa'im21
not one of us Folk of the House has revolted or will revolt to repel
an injustice or to raise up a right, without affliction uprooting
him and without his uprising increasing the adversity of us and our
63-Al-Mutawakkil ibn Harun said: Then Abu 'Abd Allah dictated to
me the supplications, which are seventy-five chapters. Of them
eleven chapters have escaped me, while I have safeguarded
64-Abu l-Mufaddal related to us.22
He said: Muhammad ibn al-Hasan ibn Ruzbih Abu Bakr al-Mada'ini23
the scribe, who lived in Rahba, related to us in his house.
65-He said: Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Muslim al-Mutahhari24
related to me.
66-He said: My father related to me from 'Umayr ibn Mutawakkil
al-Balkhi from his father al-Mutawakkil ibn Harun.
67-He said: I met Yahya ibn Zayd ibn 'Ali (upon them both be
peace). Then he mentioned the whole hadith including the vision of
the Prophet (God bless him and his Household) which was mentioned by
Ja'far ibn Muhammad from his fathers (God's blessings be upon them).
68-In al-Mutahhari's version, the chapter headings are mentioned.
1. In Praise of God
2. Blessing upon Muhammad and his Household
3. Blessing upon the Bearers of the Throne
4. Blessing upon the Attesters of the Throne
5. His Supplication for himself and his Special Friends
6. His Supplication in the Morning and Evening
7. His Supplication in Worrisome Tasks
8. His Supplication in Seeking Refuge
9. His Supplication in Yearning
10. His Supplication in Seeking Asylum with God
11. His Supplication for Good Outcomes
12. His Supplication in Confession
13. His Supplication in Seeking Needs
14. His Supplication in Acts of Wrongdoing
15. His Supplication When Sick
16. His Supplication in Asking for Release from Sins
17. His Supplication Against Satan
18. His Supplication in Perils
19. His Supplication in Asking for Rain during a Drought
20. His Supplication on Noble Moral Traits
21. His Supplication when Something made him Sorrowful
22. His Supplication in Hardship
23. His Supplication for Well-Being
24. His Supplication for his Parents
25. His Supplication for his Children
26. His Supplication for his Neighbours and Friends
27. His Supplication for the People of the Frontiers
28. His Supplication in Fleeing
29. His Supplication when his Provision was Stinted
30. His Supplication for Help in Repaying Debt
31. His Supplication in Repentance
32. His Supplication in the Night Prayer
33. His Supplication in Asking for the Best
34. His Supplication when Afflicted
35. His Supplication in Satisfaction with the Decree of God
36. His Supplication upon Hearing Thunder
37. His Supplication in Giving Thanks
38. His Supplication in Asking for Pardon
39. His Supplication in Seeking Pardon
40. His Supplication when Death was Mentioned
41. His Supplication in Asking for Covering and Protection
42. His Supplication upon completing a Reading of the Qur'an
43. His Supplication when he looked at the New Crescent Moon
44. His Supplication for the Coming of the Month of Ramadan
45. His Supplication in Bidding Farewell to the Month of Ramadan
46. His Supplication for the Day of Fast-Breaking and Friday
47. His Supplication on Day of 'Arafa
48. His Supplication on the Day of Sacrifice and Friday
49. His Supplication in Repelling the Trickery of Enemies
50. His Supplication in Fear
51. His Supplication in Pleading and Abasement
52. His Supplication in Imploring
53. His Supplication in Abasing himself
54. His Supplication for the Removal of Worries
69-The remaining chapter headings are in the words of Abu 'Abd
Allah al-Hasani (God have mercy upon him).25
70-Abu 'Abd Allah Ja'far ibn Muhammad al-Hasani related to us.26
71-He said: 'Abd Allah ibn 'Umar ibn Khattab al-Zayyat related to
72-He said: Khali ibn al-Nu'man al-A'lam related to us.
73-He said: 'Umayr ibn Mutawakkil al-Thaqafi al-Balkhi related to
us from his father Mutawakkil ibn Harun.
74-He said: My truthful master, Abu 'Abd Allah Ja'far ibn
Muhammad dictated to me.
75-He said: My grandfather 'Ali ibn al-Husayn dictated to my
father Muhammad ibn 'Ali (upon them all be peace) while I was
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