Life of Shias 10th Holy Imam 'Ali al-Naqi al-Hadi'



His Epithets

His epithets expressed the high qualities he possessed. His epithets are as follows:

1. An-Nasih (loyal); he was called so because he was the sincerest advisor to the nation.

2. Al-Mutawakkil (reliant on Allah); he disliked this epithet and ordered his companions not to call him with it. I think he hated this epithet because it was the epithet of the Abbasid caliph Ja’far al-Mutawakkil who held a bitter grudge and enmity, and was spiteful, towards the Ahlul Bayt (a.s.).

3. At-Taqiy (pious, devout); he was called so because he feared Allah and turned to Him. Al-Mutawakkil, the tyrant Abbasid caliph, tried his best to attract Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) to the fields of amusement and debauchery but he failed.

4. Al-Murtadha (being pleased with Allah); it was his most famous epithet.

5. Al-Faqeeh (jurisprudent); he was the most informed person of his age in jurisprudence, and was the authority that jurisprudents and scholars turned to.

6. Al-Aalim (knowledgeable); he was the most knowledgeable one among the people of his time, not only in the Islamic laws, but all branches of knowledge and sciences.

7. Al-Ameen (trustee on religion and life)

8. At-Tayyib (generous, kind-hearted, good-natured…)

9. Al-Askari (military); he was called so because he resided in Surra Men Ra’a (Samarra’) which was called al-Askar.[16][17]

10. Al-Muwadhih (explainer of the verdicts of the Holy Book and the Sunnah)

11. Ar-Rasheed (wise, prudent); he was called so because he was the wisest and most prudent of his time.

12. Ash-Shaheed (the martyr) because he was martyred at the hands of the enemies of Allah.

13. Al-Wafiy (loyal); he was the most loyal of his people, and loyalty was a key element of his personality.

14. Al-Khalis (pure from every defect and bad)

His Lineaments

He was brown[17][18] like his father Imam al-Jawad and grandfather Imam ar-Ridha (peace be upon them). Narrators described that he was black-eyed, with thick hands, wide chest, hooked nose, pretty face, and good body odor. He was stout in body like his grandfather Imam Abu Ja’far al-Baqir (a.s.), neither short nor tall, with wide shoulders, big organs[18][19]…straight stature.[19][20]

His Charm

Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) resorted to Allah the Almighty to protect his son Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) from the troubles and adversities of time and from every evil. Every day he charmed him with this du’a that showed his devotedness to Allah: “In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful, there is no power save in Allah, the Exalted, the Great. O Allah, the Lord of angels and Gabriel, prophets and messengers, the Omnipotent over the inhabitants of the heavens and the earth, and the Creator and Possessor of everything, protect me from the harm of our enemies, and whoever wants to do us wrong from the jinn and human beings. O Allah, blind their eyes and hearts and make between us and them a screen, guard, and defender. You are our Lord and there is no power and might save in Allah. On Him we have relied and to Him we have turned and He is the Mighty, the Wise. O our Lord, save us from every evil, and from the evil of every living creature you have control on, and from the evil of every thing that calms down on the day and the night, and from every harmful thing, and from the evil of every evildoer.

O Lord of the worlds and the Lord of messengers, send blessings on Muhammad and all his progeny and favor Muhammad and his progeny with the best of everything, and there is no power save in Allah, the High, the Great. In the name of Allah, and in Allah I believe, and from Allah I seek protection, and to Allah I resort, and with Allah I seek refuge, and by the glory and might of Allah I seek protection from the devils of the humans and the jinn, and from their footing, knighting, and running, and from their cunning and evil, and from the evil of what they do under night and under day, from far and from near, and from the evil of the present and the absent, and of the witness and the visitor, alive or dead…and from the evil of people far away, and people close by, and from the evil of my self in its obsession, and from the evil of the devils, and the sense, touch, and dubiousness, and from the envy of the jinn and the humans.

And by the name, which the throne of Bilqees[20][21] shook for, I protect my religion and self, and all those under my care from the evil of every figure or imagination, whiteness or blackness, statue or appearance, ally or not ally of whatever dwells in the air, cloud, darkness, light, shadow, hot, cold, seas, plains, badlands, ruins, building, hills, marshes, moors, churches, graveyards (of Christians), deserts and cemeteries, from the emanations of those who appear in the night and disappear on day, evening and morning, afternoon and sunset, and from the suspicious and accusers, and the talebearers in the night, the devils, the Pharaohs, Satan, and from their soldiers, wives, tribes, and clans, and from their backbiting, slandering, speech, maligning, magic, beating, playing, deceit, and from the evil of every wicked one of magicians, the jinn, their wind, and all that they generate…and from the evil of every wicked coming or going, accidental or intentional, calm or moving, and the beating of a vein, and headache and fever…and from the evil of every living creature you have power on, You are on the Right Path. O Allah, have blessing on Muhammad and the progeny of Muhammad and much peace…’

Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) prayed upon his great newborn son with this du’a so that he would live with confidence that the power which ran and managed this universe was none but Allah the Almighty, the Creator of everything and the Maker of life, and anyone other than Him had no power. Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) planted in his son the absolute faith in the powers of Allah, and taught him that resorting must be only to Allah Who saved from all misfortunes and distresses.

His Upbringing

Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) grew up in a family different from all families in its noble conducts, high morals, and lofty virtues. Their young revered the old and the old respected the young. Historians mentioned wonderful anecdotes of the high conduct of the members of this great family. They relate that Imam al-Husayn (a.s.) never spoke before his brother Imam al-Hasan (a.s.) as a kind of reverence. They said that Imam Zaynul Aabidin (a.s.) did not eat with his mother or nursemaid for fear that he might eat something that his mother or nursemaid had looked at to pick and then he might be undutiful to her. These morals were like the morals of the prophets that were, and are not found, in any other than this great family.

Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) grew up under the wing of his father Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) who was the most wonderful example of virtues and high morals. Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) shed light from his soul on his son and planted his virtues into him. He always praised his son and showed his admiration of his talents and intellectual abilities.

Historians said that when Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) wanted to go to Iraq, he seated Imam al-Hadi (a.s.), who was six years then, in his lap and said to him, ‘What do you like as present from the masterpieces of Iraq?’
Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) smiled and said, ‘A sword like a flame.’

Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) turned to his son Musa and said to him, ‘And you! What do you like?’
Musa said, ‘Some mats.’

Imam al-Jawad (a.s.) did not hide his admiration and he said to his son al-Hadi (a.s.), ‘Abul Hasan (al-Hadi) is like me…!’ He was delighted because this showed courage and valor that were from his and his fathers’ qualities.

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