Abdullah Ibn-e-Saba was the first who declared the faith in Imamat

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Abdullah Ibn-e-Saba was the first who declared the faith in Imamat and that Ali (r.a) is the true God .

[Anwaar-ul-Na'umania, Vol#2, Pg#234 - Published Iran]


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Assalam u Alaikum

On 7/14/2011 at 7:32 PM, MUHAMMED said:

Abdullah Ibn-e-Saba was the first who declared the faith in Imamat and that Ali (r.a) is the true God .

[Anwaar-ul-Na'umania, Vol#2, Pg#234 - Published Iran]

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Dear brother Muhammad, you are absolutely right. But it would also be good for readers to know how did shi'ism started. So here I am describing the reality of shi'ism that how was it invented. Shias claimed that the Sunni-Shia divide occurred after the death of Holy Prophet. But this is not the reality. So here I start:

Who invented Shia Sect

Jews of Yathrib
Prior to the advent of Islam, the Arabian Peninsula was inhabited by various warring tribes. The Arabs were plagued with to their lack of unity and their incessant inter-tribal warfare. The motley Arabs were trapped in between two regional super-powers; to the West was the powerful Roman Empire and to the East was the mighty Persian Empire, and both would terrorize neighboring Arab provinces at will.
It was then that a Prophet arose by the name of Muhammad , who unified the various Arab tribes under the banner of Islam. The Islamic ethos shattered the Jahiliyyah concept of Assabiyyah (tribalism/bigotry) and unified the Muslims under the newly defined concept of the Islamic Ummah. The Prophet unified the city of Yathrib (Medinah) which was a hotbed of inter-tribal warfare.
The Jews of Yathrib feared the unification of the Arabs, because they used to play on the differences between the various groups. The Jews thus conspired with a group of people, the Munafiqoon (the hypocrites), who claimed to be Muslim but were really disbelievers. Their leader was a man named Abdullah ibn Ubayy ibn Salool. This was the first attempt of the Jews to subvert Islam from the inside, using Abdullah ibn Ubayy and his lot to create schisms within the Ummah. Later, a Jew by the name of Abdullah Ibn Saba would use this same technique to create schisms within the Ummah.
First, the Prophet unified the city of Yathrib (Medinah) and he expelled the conspiring Jews. Then, he conquered Mecca and set about unifying all of Arabia. The Prophetﷺ sent invitation letters to the nations of the world, inviting them to the Call of Allah.
The Persians
The Persian King, Chosroes, tore up the letter and declared that he would never follow what he regarded as "the lowly" Arabs. The Persians considered themselves a superior race. Theirs was a nation of racial haughtiness and supremacism. They were not willing to submit to the way of the inferior Arabs, nor were they ready to accept the radical Islamic call for racial equality.
After the death of the Prophet, Caliph Abu Bakrؓ quelled the apostate tribes in the Wars of Riddah (Apostasy), and he thereby maintained the unity of the Arabian Peninsula. Two years later, Umar bin Khattabؓ assumed power and at this time, the Islamic nation-state was coming of age. Border skirmishes between Rome and Persia eventually erupted into all-out war.
Under the guidance of the Commander of the Faithful Umarؓ, the Muslim armies defeated Rome and blitzed across Persia, dealing both empires a crushing blow. The Persians, with their haughty attitude of superiority, were sourly humiliated. The Muslims took the Persians as POWs (Prisoners of War).
The defeated Persian governor and former military commander, Harmuzan, was brought before Caliph Umarؓ. Umarؓ said to the defeated Persian:
Harmuzan, we Arabs are the desert-dwellers you considered too lowly for even fighting with. We used to get licked by small columns of your troops. Now you see your King’s throne and crown lying at our feet while he is running about places to save his life. How did that happen?”
Harmuzan replied:
“Sir, then it used to be a war between the Persians and the Arabs. Now you have your God with you.”
In another narration, Harmuzan declared that before it was merely the Arab forces against the Persian forces, and the Persian forces were stronger. But now, it was the Arab forces and Allah, and it was impossible to defeat both at the same time. It was thus that Harmuzan and his Persian confederates realized that the power of the Republic of Medinah lay in its religious beliefs. To destroy the religious beliefs of the Muslims would be to destroy the Muslims.
Harmuzan was to be executed for war crimes by Caliph Umarؓ, but he saved his life through an ingenious trick. He asked for water to drink, and requested Caliph Umarؓ for a reprieve for his life until he could finish his drink of water. Umar granted him this request, and upon this, Harmuzan spilled the water on the ground. Because he was unable to drink the water, therefore technically his royal reprieve would never lapse. Caliph Umarؓ upheld his word, and thereby pardoned Harmuzan.
Assassination Plot
Harmuzan “converted” to Islam and moved to Medinah, whereupon he planned the Persian revenge on the Arab Muslims. Harmuzan blamed the Commander of the Faithful Umarؓ for the downfall of the Persian Empire, and it was thus that Harmuzan hatched the plan to assassinate the Caliphؓ.
In Medinah, Harmuzan became close companions with a staunch Christian named Jafeena Al-Khalil. Jafeena was a political pawn of the Roman ruler and had served as an official in Damascus, Palestine and Heerah; the defeat of Rome by the Muslims left its mark on Jafeena who, like Harmuzan, swore revenge.
The third partner was a Jew by the name of Saba bin Shamoon (whose son would be Abdullah Ibn Saba, the notorious founder of the Shia movement). Saba despised the Muslims who had expelled the Jews on charges of conspiracy. All three of these individuals–Harmuzan (the Zoroastrian), Jafeena (the Christian), and Saba (the Jew) – belonged to peoples who had grievances against the rise of Muslim dominance.
They hired Feroz Abu Lulu, a Persian, who had recently been captured by the Muslims as a POW; he was a slave under a Mugheera ibn Shubaؓ. Abu Lulu stabbed Caliph Umar bin Khattabؓ to death.
A day before Umarؓ had been assassinated, Abdur Rahmanؓ-–Abu Bakr’sؓ son-–had seen Abu Lulu standing with Harmuzan and Jafeena. The three men were whispering to one another. As Abdur Rehmanؓ passed by, the three got startled and a double edged dagger fell to the ground. Abdur Rahmanؓ would later confirm that this was the same dagger that killed Umarؓ. The murder of Umarؓ was thus instigated by a coalition of a Roman Christian, a Jew, and a Persian Zoroastrian. It should be noted that the Prophet had prophesied that the Christians, Jews, and pagans would always be united against the Muslims.
Today, the modern day Shia venerate Abu Lulu, and they call him “Baba Shuja-e-din” which can be translated as “Honored Defender of Religion.” These Shia have a shrine erected for this murderer, located in the Iranian city of Kashan called the Abu Lulu Mausoleum wherein he is buried. The Shia travel from far distances to pray inside this shrine, and many of the Shia fast on the day that Umarؓ was killed, and even pass out sweets. Feroz Abu Lulu is one of the venerated founding figures of Shia ideology; the same people who conspired to kill Umarؓ were the ones who planted the seeds of the Shia movement.
Ubaidallah’sؓ Revenge and Uthman’sؓ Decision
Umar’sؓ son, Ubaidallahؓ, was infuriated by the murder of his fatherؓ. Ubaidallahؓ killed both Harmuzan and Jafeena. Ubaidallahؓ was thus charged with murder and brought to the court of the new Caliph, Uthman bin Affanؓ. Ali bin Abi Talibؓ, Uthman’s vizier, advised that Ubaidallahؓ should be executed for murder because there was not enough evidence to convict Harmuzan and Jafeena of any crime. Furthermore, reasoned Ali, extra-judicial vigilante justice was not permitted in Islam; Harmuzan and Jafeena should at least have been entitled to a fair trial and-–if found guilty–-be executed by none other than the state.
However, the other Sahabah–-including Amir bin al A’asؓ-–differed with Ali’sؓ position , because they sympathized with Ubaidallahؓ, who was the son of the great Umarؓ. His fatherؓ had just been murdered in cold blood, and so they wished that Ubaidallahؓ be forgiven due to the fact that he was acting out of distress. Caliph Uthmanؓ thus ruled that Ubaidallahؓ must pay blood-money. But because Harmuzan and Jafeena had no relatives, Uthmanؓ declared that the blood-money should be given to charity and the Baitul Mal. However, Ubaidallahؓ was unable to pay the blood-money due to lack of funds, and so it was that Caliph Uthmanؓ paid this money out of his own pocket.
This was one of his first acts as Caliphؓ, and the conspirators (in particular Abdullah Ibn Saba’s father) viewed Uthman’sؓ decision very unfavorably. It was in this atmosphere that Uthman bin Affanؓ came to power, and the machinations of the conspirators continued in full force. Ubaidallahؓ had killed Harmuzan and Jafeena, but Saba bin Shamoon remained alive. His son, Abdullah Ibn Saba, “converted” to Islam and he would uphold the task of destroying Islam from within.
The fact that Uthmanؓ showed mercy upon Ubaidallahؓ angered Saba bin Shamoon and his son, Abdullah Ibn Saba. These two men looked sympathetically towards Aliؓ, due to the fact that Aliؓ had taken a harsh stance towards Ubaidallah’sؓ actions. It was thus that Abdullah ibn Saba “converted” to Islam and founded the Shia sect, calling the masses to adore Aliؓ and agitating them against Uthmanؓ. It was Abdullah Ibn Saba’s propaganda against Uthmanؓ that helped fan the flames of civil discontent and caused the people to rise against the Caliphؓ. And so it was that the Saba’ites (followers of Abdullah Ibn Saba) assassinated Uthmanؓ.
Uthman’sؓ Caliphate
The murder of Umarؓ by the Persians created an air of rebellion of suspicion. Under the rule of Umarؓ, the Islamic state expanded far and wide, but the conquered people posed the constant threat of rebellion. Despite these amazing victories for the Muslims, it turned out to be that the management of these vast territories became a more difficult task than conquering them. During Caliph Uthman’sؓ rule, the Islamic empire had grown so large that it was crushing itself under its own weight; the state was experiencing grave financial troubles.
Caliph Uthmanؓ was faced with the management of these conquered peoples who were by nature rebellious and unruly. He had the task of appointing governors as well as tax collectors; Caliph Uthmanؓ, an Umayyad, trusted very few people and rightfully so considering the atmosphere of civil discontent at the time, not to mention the assassination of Umarؓ by the conquered Persians. So it was that Uthmanؓ appointed his family and friends to government positions. For example, during his reign, Uthman’sؓ cousin Muawiyyahؓ remained the governor of Syria.
Aliؓ acts as Vizier of the Caliph
Many poor Bedouins felt that the Uthman’sؓ policies were tilted in favor of the Umayyad elite. They wrongfully accused Caliphؓ Uthman of nepotism. (Today, the Shia also accuse him of this. The irony should not be lost that the Shia are the ones who said that the Prophet Muhammad believed in nepotism, by restricting the Caliphs in the Ahlel Bayt only.)
The Bedouins found a spokesman in Aliؓ. Aliؓ prevented these Bedouins from resorting to violent rebellion and to instead use peaceful negotiation. As the Vizier and top advisor of Caliph Uthmanؓ, Aliؓ had the ability to bring the case of the Bedouins to the Caliphؓ, and by doing so, he brought these Bedouins to the negotiating table, instead of the war table.
The Partisans of Aliؓ
Ali’sؓ supporters were a myriad of disenchanted people, some of whom had grievances with Caliph Uthmanؓ. These became the “Partisans of Ali” or the Shia’t Ali. (It should be noted that this is not the same group as the Ithna Ashari of today. In fact, the truth is that the Ithna Asharis did not exist back then, and the doctrine of Ithna Ashari Shi’ism would only emerge centuries later.) Indeed, these Partisans of Ali were simply recently converted Bedouins as well as conquered Persians. They were not a religious sect, but rather a political party. The term “Shia’t Ali” was not used to denote a distinct religious sect; in fact, the partisans of Muawiyyahؓ would be called “Shia’t Muawiyyah.”
Within the Partisans of Ali were a myriad of different groups; many of which were Bedouins who had just recently converted from a Mushrik faith, as well as recently conquered Persians who clung to their Zoroastrian ways. They were weak in faith, ignorant, and barbaric. Both the Bedouins and the Zoroastrians were accustomed to their former pagan beliefs and had a difficult time adjusting to Islam, and often-times they would mix Islam with pagan thought.
The Saba’ites
The Zoroastrians (of the defeated Persian Empire), the Christians (of the defeated Eastern Roman Empire), and the Jews (who had been expelled by the Muslims) grieved for the old days. In their private counsel, these defeated elements had reached the conclusion that it was not possible to fight Muslims on the battlefield. Therefore, they resolved to sow the seed of discord amongst Muslims, using the model of the Jews of Yathrib. The Prophet had called the Muslims to unite under the banner of Islam and the Quran; the disunited Arabs had unified and defeated their enemies. Thus, these conspirators decided to undo this process; they reasoned that to remove the Muslims from Islam and the Quran would also cause disunity and weakness.
The first step of these conspirators was the assassination of Umarؓ. Umar’sؓ son Ubaidallahؓ took revenge and killed Jafeena the Christian and Harmuzan the Persian. It was then that Ali ibn Abi Talibؓ demanded that Ubaidallahؓ be given the death penalty for murdering Umar’sؓ assassins. Abdullah Ibn Saba, whose father had been a companion of Jafeena and Harmuzan, thus took a liking for Aliؓ and declared himself a Partisan of Aliؓ.
Ibn Saba carried a grudge against Umarؓ-–it had after all been his fatherؓ responsible for Umar’sؓ death; he also carried a grudge against Uthmanؓ who pardoned the killers of his father’s companions.
Abdullah Ibn Saba saw an opportunity to exploit the disunity of the Muslims during the time of civil unrest during Uthman’sؓ Caliphate. Ibn Saba “converted” to Islam, and tried to gain a following amongst Ali’sؓ more extreme supporters. These followers of Aliؓ were using him in their appeals to Caliph Uthmanؓ. They were already upset with Uthmanؓ, and thus they were the perfect target audience for Ibn Saba who would convince them of Ali’sؓ superiority over Uthmanؓ.
Ibn Saba first called the masses to show their love and devotion to the Ahlel Bayt (Prophetic Household). He then started claiming that none could exceed the Ahlel Bayt in status. When he gained some popularity at this, he boldly claimed that Aliؓ was the most superior person after the Prophet . When he saw that some of his followers had indeed believed him, he confided in them that Aliؓ was in reality the appointed successor of the Prophet , but that the Three Caliphsؓ had usurped this right from him. Ibn Saba then unleashed a campaign of vilification against the Sahabahؓ, and he is the first to start the practice of Tabarra, or ritualistic cursing of Abu Bakrؓ, Umarؓ, and Uthmanؓ. He then told his staunch supporters that Aliؓ had powers above those of a normal human being.
To appeal to the recent Persian converts, Ibn Saba infused Zoroastrian beliefs into Islam. The Zoroastrians believed that God’s spirit was in their Chosroes (king), and that this spirit moved from one king to another, through his descendants. Ibn Saba declared that the divinity of Imamah also moved from one Imam to another through the descendants of Ali. Many of the exaggerations in Shi’ism in regards to the powers of Imams take their inspiration from the Chosroes.
Ibn Saba’s ideas appealed to the pagan side of the new converts from amongst the Beduins and Persians; these pagans were accustomed to worshipping idols and people, so the exaltation of Aliؓ appealed to them. Eventually, Ibn Saba would take it to the ultimate extreme and he applied in full force the concept of the Persian Chosroes, declaring Aliؓ to be Allah incarnated.
Up until then, Aliؓ had not paid much attention to Ibn Saba’s antics, but once he heard of this news, Aliؓ was furious. Aliؓ threatened to burn all of Ibn Saba’s followers (called Saba’ites) to the stake including Ibn Saba; Aliؓ asked them to repent and he would eventually exile them to Mada’in (modern day Iran) when he was Caliph.
However, the Saba’ites adopted the concept of Taqiyyah (lying) and Kitman (hiding one’s faith); this allowed the Saba’ites to avoid detection from the authorities, infiltrating the ranks of the Shia’t Ali.
Aliؓ, who before becoming Caliph spent most of his time in Mecca and Medinah, remained oblivious to the Saba’ites who were mostly in Iraq (i.e. Kufa), Persia, and Egypt.
With the practise of Taqiyyah and Kitman, the Saba’ites functioned much like a secret society or cult, such as the Free Masons, Illuminati, and other clandestine organizations. The Saba’ites operated under a strict code of secrecy and hid their identities for fear of reprisal from the government. This created a situation such that the authorities could not clamp down on the Saba’ites due to their elusiveness, and the secret society continued to grow in numbers and fill the ranks of the Shia’t Ali, without even Ali’sؓ knowledge.
The Saba’ites were the originators of the Shia faith. Generations later, these Saba’ites would branch out into the various Shia sects we know of today: the Druze, Bohras, Nizaris, Zaydis, Jarudis, Sulaymanis, Butris, Ismailis, Kaysaniyyas, Qaddahiyyas, Ghullat, Aga Khanis, Ithna Asharis, Usoolis, Akhbaris, Shaykis, and so on.
Saba’ites Organize Attack on Uthmanؓ
It should be noted that these Saba’ite Bedouins were only one segment of the Shia’t Ali; they were an extremist fringe group. With the goading of Abdullah Ibn Saba, the Egyptian Bedouins (led by the Saba’ites) were planning on rebelling against Caliph Uthmanؓ. However, news of this imminent treason by the extremist wing of the Shia’t Ali reached the ears of Uthmanؓ . Caliph Uthmanؓ thus ordered the Egyptian governor to pre-emptively take action against the malcontents. But when the Eygptian Bedouins found out that the governor was to punish the malcontents on orders of Caliph Uthmanؓ, Abdullah Ibn Saba convinced the Bedouins to siege the Caliph’sؓ home in Medinah.
Ali did not take part in the siege, nor did he approve of it. In fact, Aliؓ sent his own sons to protect Caliph Uthmanؓ, and he even offered 500 men to protect Uthman . How is it then that the Shia claim that Aliؓ hated Uthmanؓ when he sent his own beloved sons to defend him and to prolong his Caliphate?
Indeed, Aliؓ did not support the Saba’ite Bedouins who favored Aliؓ over Uthmanؓ-–much like Aliؓ would not support the modern day Shia today. The modern day Shia can never explain why Aliؓ did not raise his sword against Uthmanؓ, and they can only say that perhaps he was preventing bloodshed. But then why was Aliؓ ready to shed blood in the defense of Uthmanؓ? Truly, the Shia cannot explain this: a man does not send his sons to defend a tyrant.
Ali’sؓ Caliphate
In any case, Uthmanؓ was assassinated by the Saba’ite Bedouins. Once Uthmanؓ was slain, the Shia’t Ali urged Aliؓ to become the next Caliph. Aliؓ, however, did not approve of the actions taken by his extremist followers and he asked his Shia’t Ali to find someone else to be Caliph. Aliؓ became reclusive and shunned his followers severely. This is recorded in Nahjul Balagha, which the Shia consider one of the most authentic sources of Ali’sؓ lectures.
Nahjul Balagha, Sermon 91
When people decided to swear allegiance at Amir al-mu’minin’s hand after the murder of Uthman, Aliؓ said:
“Leave me and seek someone else. We are facing a matter which has (several) faces and colors, which neither hearts can stand nor intelligence can accept. Clouds are hovering over the sky, and face are not discernible. You should know that if I respond to you that I would lead you as I know and would not care about whatever [anyone else] may say. If you leave me, then I am the same as you are. It is possible I would listen to and obey whoever you make in charge of your affairs. I am better for you as a counselor than as chief.”
(source: [not allowed], http://www.[not allowed]/nahj/)
However, the people pressured him and finally Aliؓ became the Fourth Caliph. If Aliؓ had really been appointed to the Imamah by Allah, then why would Aliؓ have refused this appointment at first? Why would he dislike a position that was supposedly granted to him by Allah? If Imamah was destined for him, why is Aliؓ claiming that he wasn’t even going to be the Caliph until the people put him up to it?
We see that Aliؓ says the following in Nahjul Balagha:
Nahjul Balagha, Sermon 205
Aliؓ said:
“By Allah, I had no liking for the caliphate nor any interest in government, but you yourselves invited me to it and prepared me for it.”
(source: [not allowed], http://www.[not allowed]/nahj/)
Battle of the Camel Instigated by Saba’ites
There was a public demand for Aliؓ to find the killers of Uthmanؓ, especially since it was known that the killers were part of the Shia’t Ali. However, Aliؓ found himself too busy preventing a civil war to invest time and resources into finding the killers, so he planned on delaying it. This angered many people who wanted justice immediately. They found a spokeswoman in Aishaؓ, the Prophet’s widow. She sympathized with the people who wanted to find the killers of Uthmanؓ.
The reality is that both Aliؓ and Aishaؓ had equally convincing arguments. On the one hand, Aliؓ wanted to delay spending time and resources to find the killers because he had to prevent a civil war. On the other hand, Aishaؓ cannot be blamed for feeling hurt and loss at the murder of Uthmanؓ, and surely the murderers should be brought to justice!
Aishaؓ went to see Caliph Aliؓ in order to resolve the issue peacefully through arbitration. She feared that if she did not intercede on behalf of the malcontents by convincing Aliؓ to find the murderers, they would rebel against Caliph Aliؓ. She thus adopted the previous role of Aliؓ: it had, after all, been Aliؓ who would take the case of the people to Caliph Uthmanؓ in order that their demands be heard.
Both Aishaؓ and Aliؓ wanted to resolve the issue peacefully. However, the extremist portion of the Shia’t Ali [i.e. the Saba’ites] that were responsible for the murder of Uthmanؓ did not want Aishaؓ to convince Aliؓ to prosecute the murderers, since of course it was they themselves.
So these Shia’t Ali decided to attack Aisha’s contingent thereby provoking a counter-response. Soon, Aliؓ and Aishaؓ found themselves in a battle that nobody even knew who started it. This was the Battle of the Camel, and both Aliؓ and Aishaؓ found themselves enmeshed in a battle that they did not want to fight.
Aisha’sؓ contingent was defeated. She apologized to Caliph Aliؓ for the trouble she had caused, and Aliؓ forgave her and safely returned Aishaؓ to her home. Both Aliؓ and Aishaؓ are considered Sahabahؓ, and this is a shining example of how although Sahabahؓ get into disputes, they can resolve them in a civil manner. Aishaؓ had the humility to apologize, despite the fact that she really didn’t do anything wrong, and Aliؓ had the nobility not to hold any ill-feelings towards her and to walk her safely home.
During this chaotic time of civil war, all of the Sahabahؓ were being pulled and manipulated by their ardent followers, many of whom were rabble-rousers like the followers of Ibn Saba in the Shia’t Ali. In the confusion of all of this, the Sahabahؓ found themselves facing a civil war, despite the verse in the Quran which stated that the Ummah should remain united. It was a sad time in the history of Islam, with great Sahabahؓ fighting other great Sahabahؓ. But it should be remembered that the Battle of the Camel was concluded with the eventual reconciliation between Umm al Mu’mineen Aishaؓ and Amir al Mu’mineen Caliph Aliؓ.
Battle of Siffin and the Saba’ite Revolt Against Aliؓ
Uthman’sؓ cousin Muawiyyahؓ, then the governor of Syria, was not pleased with this outcome because Aliؓ still did not prosecute the criminals within his own ranks. Muawiyyahؓ was a blood-relative of Uthmanؓ and he was very upset that the murderers were not apprehended. Muawiyyahؓ refused to recognize Aliؓ as Caliph, and he demanded the right to avenge  Uthman’s ؓ death. In what was perhaps the most important battle fought between Muslims, Ali’sؓ forces  met Muawiyyah’sؓ in the Battle of Siffin.
The Shia say that Aliؓ fought Muawiyyahؓ for denying the Shia concept of the Imamah, and that Aliؓ was the first Infallible Imam. And yet the Shia’s own books say that this was not the cause of the Battle of Siffin, but rather the cause was purely political, not religious. Aliؓ clearly said in Nahjul Balagha:
“In the beginning of our matter, the people of Syria [Muawiyyah’sؓ forces] and us met. It is obvious that our God is one, our Prophet is one, and our call in Islam is one. We do not see ourselves more in faith in Allah or more in believing His messenger than them, nor they do. Our matter is one, except for our disagreement in Uthman’sؓ blood, and we are innocent from his murder.” [Nahjul Balagha, vol.3, p.648]
So it was that the Shia’t Ali met the Shia’t Muawiyyah. Caliph Ali’sؓ forces were decimating the forces of Muawiyyahؓ. It would have been a decisive victory for Caliph Aliؓ, but the Shia’t Muawiyyah used a rouse to fool the Shia’t Ali. Muawiyyah’sؓ Syrians adorned the tips of their swords with pages from the Quran. This confused the Shia’t Ali, who did not want to bring harm to the Quran.
The Shia’t Ali stopped fighting due to this trick, and the Shia’t Muawiyyah asked for a cease-fire and to resolve the issue through arbitration. Caliph Aliؓ, being the noble man that he was, agreed to  Shurah (consultation) for determining who would be Caliph. This greatly upset a contingent of his ardent followers, the Saba’ites, who did not agree that Aliؓ should use arbitration. The Saba’ites had been convinced by Abdullah Ibn Saba that Allah had appointed Aliؓ as Caliph. So they accused Aliؓ of going against the Will of Allah by resorting to negotiation on the matter. How could there be negotiation on a matter that is decreed by Allah Almighty?
A portion of the Saba’ites defected and turned against Caliph Aliؓ. They declared vociferously: “No rule but to Allah!” These defectors came to be known as the Khawaarij, which literally translates to “those who go out” or “those who secede.” For so long, these people had been the most ardent supporters of Aliؓ, calling themselves the Shia’t Ali and the Lovers of Ahl el Bayt, but look now where their doctrinal innovation had taken them. They defected against the very man they had claimed to follow!
This event in Islamic history is one that the Shia of today cannot explain away. They try to hide it under a rug, since it shows the falsehood of their beliefs. The Khawaarij, former Saba’ites, were of the same belief as today's Ithna Ashari Shia (Twelver Shia, those who believe in 12 Imams) , namely that Allah had appointed Aliؓ to be Caliph. And yet, Aliؓ agreed to arbitration with Muawiyyahؓ. The million-dollar question is: how could Aliؓ agree to arbitration if it was a matter decreed by Allah?
How could Aliؓ agree to negotiation on this matter if Allah Himself had chosen Aliؓ to be this supposed “Infallible Imam”? Would Prophet Muhammad agree to arbitration and negotiation on the matter of his Prophethood? So why would Aliؓ arbitrate and negotiate on the matter of his Imamah? In matters decreed by Allah, there can be no negotiation! For example, we cannot negotiate on the matter of eating pork or Salah, since these matters are already decreed by Allah.
This event proves without a shadow of doubt that Aliؓ did not believe he was not divinely appointed by Allah nor by His Messenger, since he agreed to arbitration and agreed to Shurah (consultation) to decide who would be the Caliph. This proves that what the Ahl Sunnah's (Sunnis) beliefs are correct: namely that Shurah is the way to elect a leader, much like how Abu Bakrؓ was selected.
The Shia belief system is diametrically opposed to the very Aliؓ they claim to follow, and soon will they also be faced against Aliؓ, much like the Khawaarij (former Saba’ites) would turn against and confront Aliؓ; Aliؓ is he who denied all claims of divine appointment and of Infallible Imamah.
Caliph Aliؓ eventually fought against the Khawaarij Shia and defeated them and was not successful in uprooting the beliefs of their followers. However, the Shia became a secret cult initially.
Aliؓ Murdered by Saba’ites
In any case, the Khawaarij Shia turned against Caliph Aliؓ and killed him. So it was that Muawiyyahؓ became the fifth Caliph. The irony should not be lost that the Khawaarij Shia are the ones who killed Aliؓ, allowing Muawiyyahؓ to be the Caliph, and now look at the Shia today lamenting about Muawiyyahؓ stealing the Caliphate! There can be no denying that the Saba’ites and the Khawaarij are the fore-fathers of Shi’ism, since the Shia today hold the same opinion that Aliؓ was divinely appointed and thus arbitration (i.e. with Abu Bakrؓ or Muawiyyahؓ) cannot be accepted.
After Ali’sؓ death, the Khawaarij went back into hiding, using Taqiyyah (lying) and Kitman (hiding). Abdullah ibn Abbasؓ, a relative of the Prophet , attempted to persuade them to reject the Khawaarij doctrine, and so some of them did reject it. Unfortunately, most of them continued to hold onto their Saba’ite Shia beliefs, initially secretly, and later more openly.
This article has traced the origins of the Shia, which date back to the assassination conspiracy of Umarؓ by the Persian Harmuzan, the Christian Jafeena, and the Jew Saba. The latter’s son, Abdullah Ibn Saba, would carry on his father’s work by adopting the subterfuge tactics of the Jews of Yathrib. Ibn Saba was successful in weakening the Muslims from the inside by creating the Shia sect. Throughout its turbulent history, the Shia (who originated from the Saba’ites) have spread Fitnah to every corner of the Muslim world.
These Saba’ites killed Uthmanؓ, attacked Aishaؓ, and killed Aliؓ. They also supported Umar’sؓ assassin Abu Lulu. Then, these Shia betrayed Ali'sؓ son Hasanؓ. The Shia also deceived Ali'sؓ second son Hussainؓ to seek the Caliphate by giving him the impression they they would support him, but they abandoned him and many of them actually fought against him, in the battle that lead to his brutal death. Later, Hussain’sؓ grandson(Zaid bin Ali bin Hussainؒ )would also die due to the betrayal of the Shia.
The ancestors of the Shia were a hate-mongering people, responsible for creating disunity and disarray amongst the Muslim Ummah. Today, this tradition lives on in the Shia, who carry on the practice of Tabarra, cursing and insulting the pious pioneers of Islam, rabble-rousing and trying to create hatred and disunity amongst the believers.
------------------------------------------------ -----------------------------------------

Shia: Historical Background

1. What does the word "Shi'a" mean? 
"Shie'ah", "Shi'a": a singular Arabic noun means group, party, sect, supporter. The plural form is Shiya' and Ashyaa'. There is another word in Arabic that denotes the same meaning, i.e Hizb, its plural is Ahzaab. Both terms were used in the Holy Qur'an: 
19:69 Then shall We certainly drag out from every sect (Shi'a) all those who were worst in obstinate rebellion against (Allah) Most Gracious. 
28:15 And he entered the city at a time when its people were not watching: and he found there two men fighting,- one of his own religion (Shie'atihi), and the other, of his foes. Now the man of his own religion (Shie'atihi) appealed to him against his foe, and Moses struck him with his fist and made an end of him. He said: "This is a work of Evil (Satan): for he is an enemy that manifestly misleads!" 
37:83 Verily among those who followed his Way (Shie'atihi) was Abraham. 
15:10 We did send apostles before thee amongst the religious sects (Shiya') of old: 
6:65 Say: "He hath power to send calamities on you, from above and below, or to cover you with confusion in party strife (Shiya'an), giving you a taste of mutual vengeance - each from the other." See how We explain the signs by various (symbols); that they may understand. 
6:159 As for those who divide their religion and break up into sects (Shiya'an), thou hast no part in them in the least: their affair is with Allah. He will in the end tell them the truth of all that they did. 
28:4 Truly Pharaoh elated himself in the land and broke up its people into sections (Shiya'an), depressing a small group among them: their sons he slew, but he kept alive their females: for he was indeed a maker of mischief. 
30:32 Those who split up their Religion, and become (mere) Sects (Shiya'an),- each party (Hizben) rejoicing in that which is with itself! 
During the conflict between Ali [ra] and Muawiyah [ra], both groups were referred to as "Shi'atu Ali" and "Shi'atu Muawiyah". Hence, its early usage in the conflict between the two great companions Ali & Muawiyah [ra-both] was to denote who "sided" with who in its political context. 

2. Was the dispute between Ali and Muawiyah religious in nature? 
Absolutely not. The conflict started after the murder of the 3rd Caliph Othman bin 'Affan [ra], and the existence of the murderers in the camp of Ali [ra]. However; to answer this question, we'll explore Nahjul Balaghah to see what Ali [ra] himself had to say about it, contrary to what the Shi'a wish to present: 
"The thing began in this way: We and the Syrians were facing each other while we had common faith in one Allah, in the same Prophet (s) and on the same principles and canons of religion. So far as faith in Allah and the Holy Prophet (s) was concerned we never wanted them (the Syrians) to believe in anything over and above or other than what they were believing in and they did not want us to change our faith. Both of us were united on these principles. The point of contention between us was the question of the murder of Uthman. It had created the split. They wanted to lay the murder at my door while I am actually innocent of it."
Nahjul Balaghah, Letter 58, p. 474 
http://www.[not allowed]/nahjul/letters/letter58.htm#letter58 

Therefore, if Ali [ra] himself does not see the conflict religious nor his political opponents as Kafirs (unbelievers) then the love which Shi'ites claim to have for him and the claim that they follow him, is an unproven claim from their own sources. For if they do indeed love Ali [ra] they will hold his views in this matter too, but they are people of no understanding. Furthermore, Ali [ra] instructed his men as follows: 
"I dislike you starting to abuse them, but if you describe their deeds and recount their situations that would be a better mode of speaking and a more convincing way of arguing. Instead of abusing them you should say, "O' Allah! save our blood and their blood, produce reconciliation between us and them, and lead them out of their misguidance so that he who is ignorant of the truth may know it, and he who inclines towards rebellion and revolt may turn away from it."
Nahjul-Balaghah: Sermon 204, or online Sermon 205 (http://www.[not allowed]/nahjul/205.htm) 
Are the Shi'ites in anyway, form or manner following his instructions? Most certainly not. All we hear from them is slandering and cursing to the best men honored and chosen by Allah [swt] to be the companions of His Apostle [saw] 

3. Did the word "Shi'ites" exist during the era of Muhammad [saw]? 
Anyone who claims that the word "Shi'a" or "Shi'ites" was used by the Apostle of Allah or during his era is a liar, and no proof whatsoever exists to support this claim. To illustrate as a proof, the Shi'ites themselves never agreed on when Shi'asm actually started. In his book "Asl al-Shi'a wa Usooliha" p. 87, Grand Rabbi Aal Kaashif-al-Ghataa' wrote: 
"The first (person) who planted the seed of Shi'asm in the field of Islam, is no other than the Prophet himself. In other words, the seed of Shi'asm was placed side by side with the seed of Islam coequally. Its planter (the Prophet [saw]) continued to care for it by irrigating it until it grew and prospered during his life time, then bore fruits after his death"
This is an absolute false statement, which he supported by a false Hadith (Hadith of the Bird) to which he falsely claimed exists in Sahih al-Bukhari and Muslims, or the Hadith "Verily it is Ali and his Shi'ites who are the winners" as most of Shi'ites writers do, to give the reader the impression that they are supporting their falsehood with authentic narrations from our Sihaah. 
It is no wonder then, that Ibn Abil-Hadeed (586 - 656 Hijri), an extremist Shi'a, admittedly writes in his Commentary on Nahjul-Balaghah: 
" The origin of lies in Ahadith of virtues, started with the Shi'ites who fabricated various Ahadith in the virtues of their Imams. It was the enmity they held against their adversaries that drove them to fabricate them"  See Sharh Nahujul-Balaghah, vol.1, p.783 (Quoting from al-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu', p.19)

4. So when did Shi'ism evolve as a political party? 
Actually, neither the Shi'ites' historians nor the Shi'ites' Rabbis have a consensus on the evolution of Shi'ism. In his "Firaq al-Shi'a" (The Shi'a Groups) Abu Muhammad al-Hasan bin Musa al-Nubakhti, one of the foremost known Shi'i historian, believes that Shi'ism did not start until the demise of the Apostle [saw]: 
" The Messenger [sawa] died in the month of Rabi' al-Awwal, in the year 10 of Hijra at age 63 and the duration of his prophethood was for 23 years, and his mother is Aaminah bint Wahab bin Abdi Manaaf bin Zuhra bin Kilaab bin Murra bin Ka'b bin Lu'ay bin Ghaalib. (At his death) The Ummah was divided into three groups. One group was called the Shi'ites, who were the Shi'ites of Ali bin Abi Taleb [as] and from them all Shi'i sects broke away. Another (group) claimed the right of succession, i.e., al-Ansaar, who called for the inauguration of Sa'd bin Ubadah al-Khazraji. A (Third) group tilted toward giving the Bay'ah (allegiance) to Abu Bakr bin Abi Qahaafah, with an excuse that the Messenger [sawa] did not name a particular successor rather left it for the Ummah to chose whom it wills...."     (Firaq al-Shi'a: pp. 23-24)

Muhammad Hussain al-Muzaffari thinks it was started by the Prophet [saw] himself, he thus wrote in his Tareekh al-Shi'a (History of the Shi'ites): 
"The call for Shi'asm started with the day when Grand Savior Muhammad [sawa] shouted the word La Ilaha illallah in Makka's sections and mountains....and hence, the call to become a Shi'ite for Abu al-Hasan [as] (Ali) by the Prophet [sawa] went side by side with the call for the two testimonies"
Tareekh al-Shi'a: Muhammad Husain al-Muzaffari, pp. 8-9, Qum, Iran. 
Abu Ishaaq Ibn al-Nadim, (297-385 h), a famous Shi'i writer, did not agree to neither of the above theories, he wrote in his "al-Fihrist" that Shi'ism started at the Battle of Camel, thus explained: 
"When Talha and Az-Zubair disagreed with Ali and accepted no less than the revenge for the blood of Othman, and Ali mobilized his forces to fight them, those who followed him were then given the title, Shi'ites."
(Al-Fihrist, Ibn al-Nadim: p.249, from Ash-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu': Ehsan Elahi Zaheer, p.25)

Kamil Mustafa al-Shaybi, a Shi'a, wrote in his book: 
" The independence of the term indicating Shi'asm came about only after the murder of al-Husain whereby Shi'ism became an independent entity with a distinctive identity"
  (The Link Between Sufism & Shi'asm: Mustafa Kamil al-Shaybi, p.23, From Ash-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu', Ehsan Elahi Zaheer, p.26)
It is obvious from their own disputes over the birth of Shi'ism, that the attempts to make Shi'itization (call to dis-unity) the original message of the Prophet [saw] is a failure and can only fool the naives who go after every drum beater. 

5. If Muhammad [saw] did not start Shi'ism as some of them claim, who then started it? 
Simply, when the Jews were convinced they are unable to halt the fast growing and spreading of Christianity by means of force, they planed to destroy it from within. This mission was successfully carried out by Rabbi Paul. When Islam came, likewise, the Jews again attempted to abort this new religion. Their endeavors took many forms and shapes, from attempts to assassinate the Apostle of Allah [saw] to waging wars that ended in deporting most of them from al-Madinah or executing those who betrayed the truce. Similarly, they were convinced that the best way to destroy Islam and the Muslims' unity was to resort to the plot they used with Christianity. A Yemenite Jew by the name of Abdullah bin Saba' , as Paul did, pretended to have embraced Islam to plant secretly the seeds of this new cult which he successfully performed. He arrived from Yemen to al-Madinah during the era of Zunnurain Caliph Othman bin 'Affaan [ra] and started to plan and cook the plot, waiting for the proper opportunity which he found in Ali [ra]. 

6. Recently, some Shi'ites began to claim that "Abdullah bin Saba'" is a myth and an imaginative personality who never existed in history, how true? 
It is natural for them to be ashamed of this fact, but our question to them is, why they kept silent for 14 centuries and not a single scholar of them disputed this fact throughout this period? Furthermore, what do they say about the giant scholars of theirs who confirmed the existence of this Jew, and what do they say about their "Infallible" Imams who likewise confirmed his existence? Certainly, if Ibn Saba' was a myth, then this is a blow to their credibility and "Infallibility" and the entire footings of Shi'ism has thereby collapsed.

Nevertheless, we'll prove our point, not by using Sunni or Orientalists sources, but will call to the witness stand their very own historians and whom they call deputies of Allah on earth, the "Infallible" Imams: 
First: Abu Muhammad al-Hasan bin Musa al-Nubakhti:
The well known Shi'ite "Who's Who" critic, al-Najashi in his al-Fihrist, wrote: 
"al-Hasan bin Musa: Abu Muhammad al-Nubakhti, the well versed in dialects, who surpassed the peers of his time prior and after year 300 (hijra)"
  (Al-Fihrist: al-Najashi, p.47; From Ash-Shi'a was-Sunnah, p.22)

Another "Who's Who" critic, At-Tusi, in his al-Fihrist wrote: 
"Abu Muhammad, dialectist and philosopher, was an Imami (shi'ite), an upright in faith, trustworthy (thiqah)....and he is one of the scholars' landmarks"
(Al-Fihrist: At-Tusi, p.98; From Ash-Shi'a Was-Sunnah, p.22)

Nurallah at-Tasturi, in his "Majaalis al-Mu'mineen" wrote: 
"al-Hasan bin Musa, one of the celebrity of this sect and its scholars. He was a dialectist, a philosopher, an Imami in faith"
(Majaalis al-Mu'mineen: Nurallah At-Tasturi, p.177; from Ash-Shi'a was-Sunnah, p.22)

Having established the authority of this historian from the Shi'ites own sources, let's read what Mr. al-Nubakhti had to say about Ibn Saba': 
"Abdullah bin Saba', was one of those who slandered Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and the Companions and disowned them. He claimed that it was Ali [as] who enjoined this on him. Ali arrested him, and upon interrogation, admitted to the charge, and (Ali) ordered him to be executed. The People cried 'O Chief of Believers ! Do you execute a man calling to your love, Ahlul-Bayt, to your allegiance, and disowning your enemies?' He (Ali) then exiled him to al-Mada'in (Capital of Iran back then). Some of the knowledgeable companions of Ali [as] narrated that Abdullah bin Saba' was a Jew who embraced Islam and sided with Ali [as]. That he was of the opinion, at the time when he was a Jew, claiming that Yousha' bin Noon is after Moses. After his submission to Islam, after the demise of the Prophet [pbuh], he claimed the same for Ali [as]. He was the first to publicly mandate the Imamah of Ali [as], disowning his enemies, and debated his opponents. From thence, those who oppose Shi'ism say: The origin of Shi'ism is rooted in Judaism. When Abdullah bin Saba' heard of the demise of Ali while in (his exile at) al-Mada'in, he said to the announcer of the news: 'You are a liar, if you are to bring his head in seventy bags, and brought seventy witnesses testifying to his death, we'll insist that he did not die nor murdered, and (he) shall not die till he rules the globe' ".
  (Firaq al-Shi'a: Nubakhti, pp. 43,44)

Second: Abu Amr bin Abdul Aziz al-Kash-shi: Another well known "Who's Who" critic who also mentioned Ibn Saba', and one of the earliest Shi'ite biographers. In the "Introduction" to his book, known as "Rijaal al-Kash-shi", we read: 
"He is trustworthy (thiqah), an adept, an expert in traditions and men, very knowledgeable, well founded in faith, on the upright path......The most important books on biographies of men are four, which are heavily depended on and (considered) the four basic pillars in this field, the most important and earliest of all is: Ma'rifat al-Naqileen anil-A'immah As-Sadiqeen (Knowing the Transmitters on The Authority of The Truthful Imams) known as Rijaal al-Kash-shi".
(Rijaal al-Kash-shi: al-Najaashi, Introduction)

Having established the authority of this scholar, let's examine what he has to say about the Jew Ibn Saba': 
"Some people of knowledge mentioned that Abdullah bin Saba' was a Jew, who embraced Islam and supported Ali. While he was still a Jew, he used to go to extremism in calling Yousha' bin Noon as the appointee (successor) of Moses, thus after embracing Islam - after the demise of the Messenger of Allah [pbuh] - he said the like about Ali. It was him who first publicly announced the mandatory Iamamah for Ali, rejected and disowned his enemies, debated his opponents and called them Kafirs. Hence, those who oppose the Shi'ites often say: The Shi'ites and Rejectors (Rafidah) have their roots in Judaism."
(Rijaal al-Kash-shi: Abu 'Amr bin Abdul Aziz al-Kash-shi, p.101 al-Mamaqaani, author of "Tanqeeh al-Maqaal", who is an authoritative Shi'i biogropher quoted the like in his said book, p.184)

Now, if these Shi'ites authorities lied about the identity of Ibn Saba', then the possibility of them lying about other matters, like the events of Siffien, the murder of al-Hussain [ra] and other Shi'i dogmas, stands greater. Consequently, if this is the case, doubt will overshadow any and all events and narrations recorded by them. 
But assuming that the foresaid men are liars, and error infiltrated to their books, and therefore their testimony is not a proof (hujjah) nor binding, then we invite you to examine the testimony of those who are "Infallible" and looked at as "Deputies of Allah" whose sayings are equal to Allah's as the Shi'ites claim: 
1. "Narrated to me Muhammad bin Qolawaih: Narrated to me Sa'd bin Abdullah, said: Narrated to us Yaqoub bin Yazeed and Muhammad bin Issa from Ali bin Mahziyar, from Fadalah bin Ayoub al-Azdi, from Abban bin Othman said: I heard Abu Abdullah [as] saying: 
'May Allah curse Abdallah bin Saba', he claimed a divineship for Amirul-Mu'mineen (Ali) [as]. By Allah, Amierul-Mu'mineen [as] was volunterily the slave of Allah. Woe to him who lie about us, for there are people who say about us what we don't say about ourselves, we clear ourselves to Allah from them, we clear ourselves to Allah from them'." 
2. "Narrated Yaqoub bin Yazeed from Ibn Abi Omair and Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Issa, from his father and al-Husain bin Sa'eed, from Hisham bin Salim, from Abu Hamza al-Thumali said: Ali bin al-Husain [as] said:
'May the curse of Allah be upon those who tell lies about us. I mentioned Abdullah Ibn Saba and each hair in my body stood up, Allah cursed him. Ali (AS) was, by Allah, a proper servant of Allah, the brother of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH). He did not earn the graciousness/honor from Allah except with the obedience to Allah and His Messenger. And (similarly) the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) did not earn the honor from Allah except with his obedience to Allah'." 
3. Narrated Muhammad bin Khalid At-Tayalisi, from Ibn Abi Najran, from Abdullah bin Sinaan said: Abu Abdullah [as] said:
"We are a family of truthfulness. But we are not safe from a liar telling lies about us to undermine our truth with his lies in front of people. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) was the most truthful among people in what he said (Lahjatan) and the most truthful among all humanity; and Musaylima used to lie on him. The Commander of Believers (AS) was the most truthful one among the creation of Allah after the Messenger of Allah; and the one who used to lie on him, and tried to undermine his truthfulness and claimed lies about Allah, was Abdullah Ibn Saba." 
(Ibid, pp. 100 -101)

Need further Shi'ites sources? We'll call to testimony al-Hasan bin Ali al-Hilly, another famous Shi'i biographer, and examine what he had to say about the Jew Ibn Saba': 
"Abdullah bin Saba' returned to disbelief and showed extremism. He claimed prophethood, and that Ali [as] was Allah (in the flesh). Ali [as], for three (consecutive) days asked him to repent but he failed, thereupon, he [as] burned him (alive) with seventy other men who attributed divinity to him"
(Kitaab al-Rijaal: al-Hilly, p.469, printed in Tehran, Iran 1383 h. From Ash-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu', p.56)

We'll further call another witness for the stand, the Shi'i biographer, al-Astra Abadi, and examine his testimony: 
"Abdullah bin Saba' claimed prophethood and that Ali [as] is himself Allah the Most Exalted. Upon hearing this charge, Amirul-Mu'mineen called and inquired it from him. When he admitted, he said to him: back off from this say and repent, may your mother lose you. However; (Ibn Saba') refused, and (Ali) held him for three days, and, still refusing to repent, he therefore burned him (alive)." 
(Manhaj al-Maqaal: al-Astar Abadi, p.203, from: Ash-Ashia wat-Tashayyu', p.56 )

We have another witness, which we like to take his statement, a Persian historian, in his "Tareekh Shi'i" confirmed and wrote: 
"When Abdullah bin Saba' learned that the opposition to Othman in Egypt was greater, he went there and pretended the knowledge and righteousness until the people trusted him. After he established himself there, he started to propagate his ideas and theory, that for each Prophet was an appointed successor, and the appointee (wasi) of the Apostle of Allah and his successor is no other than Ali, who is blessed with knowledge and Fatwa, ornamented with generousity and courage, and known for his honesty and righteousness. He further said: The Ummah has wronged Ali, usurped his right, the right of Khilafah (succession) and Walayah (allegiance). It is incumbent upon you all to aid and support him. He (immediately) revoked his obedience and allegiance to Othman, and touched many Egyptians with his sayings and deeds, and they revolted against Othman."
(Tareekh Shi'i: Rawdat As-Safa, vol.2, p.292, Tehran Ed., From: Ashi'a wat-Tashayyu' , p.56)

And there are hundreds of other books who affirmed and confirmed, that Shi'ism started with this Jewish Yemenite who pretended "Love of Ahlul-Bayt" and sought justice for them, as a plot to crack the unity of the Muslim Ummah who crushed the Jewish tribes in the Arabic Peninsula. It is not amazing therefore, that the alliance between the Jews and the Persian Majoos (Zoroastrians) prosper to revenge from those who destroyed their dreams and humiliated a civilization not long ago, was one of two super powers in the world. This is briefly why Shi'ism prospered mainly in the land of the Fire worshippers, Persia. 

7. Who are the 12 Imams that the Shi'a believe in? 
No. Kunyah, Name, Laqab, Years
01- Abu al-Hasan Ali bin Abi Taleb al-Murtada ؓ 10 bh- 40 ah 
02- Abu Muhammad al-Hassan bin Ali AzZaky ؓ 03-050 h 
03- Abu Abdallah al-Hussain bin Ali Sayyid al-Shuhada ؓ 04-061 h 
04- Abu Muhammad Ali bin al-Hussain Zainul-'Abideen ؒ 38-095 h 
05- Abu Ja'far Muhammad bin Ali al-Baqir ؒ 57-114 h 
06- Abu Abdallah Ja'far bin Muhammad al-Sadiq ؒ 83-148 h 
07- Abu Ibrahim Musa bin Ja'far al-Kadhim ؒ 128-183 h 
08- Abu al-Hasan Ali bin Musa al-Rida ؒ 148-202/3 h 
09- Abu Ja'far Muhammad bin Ali al-Jawaad ؒ 195-220 h 
10- Abu al-Hasan Ali bin Muhammad al-Hadi ؒ 212-254 h 
11- Abu Muhammad al-Hasan bin Ali al-Askari ؒ 232-260 h 

12- Abu al-Qasim Muhammad bin al-Hasan al-Mahdi 256-to-end of time !!!(He has not yet born, just a shia myth. They say Hazrat Hasan Al-Askari married the grand-daughter of Roman king and they had a son born in just in 3 day!!! Is that possible? Obviously no.

One more thing in the end, the members of Ahle Bayt I have written above(except Mehdi because he is just a myth) were not shia. Hazrat Jafar Sadiq cursed those who attributed false to Ahle Bayt. Hazrat Zaid bin Ali bin Hussainؒ fought against the Umayyad Caliph Hasham bin Abdul Malik. Just before the battle had started his followers said him to curse Abu Bakr ؓ , Umar ؓ  and Usman ؓ . When he denied this they deserted him. These deserters were known as Rawafiz.


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