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Shiaism & Sufism [com(union)] – Allamah Ehsan Ilahi Zaheer [1407H]

Compiled, Translated and Annotated

Abu Hibbaan & Abu Khuzaimah Ansaari



Shiaism is essentially rooted from Judaism and the founder of shiaism was a Jew who set its foundation. He fabricated its principles and formulated its rules. The founder of shiaism was abdullah ibn saba[1] who pretended to be a Muslim but in reality he veiled himself behind Islaam and deceptively deceived the Muslims via his taqiyyah.

During the reign of the third Khaleeph, Uthmaan Ibn Affaan (RadhiAllaahu Anhu) abdullah Ibn saba came to Madeenah from Yemen with the sole intention of destroying the pillars of Islaam. He was one of the first individuals to cause dissension and discord amongst the Muslims and he did so by fuelling animosity and hatred amongst them. He was also the first person who hurled abuse and cursed the Muslims. He was really a Jew and pretended to be a Muslim and ended up joining the companions of Alee (RadhiAllaahu Anhu) as his sympathiser. 

According to Judaism, (Joshua) Yu’sha bin Noon was the viceroy of Moosaa (Alayhis Sallam) similarly abdullah Ibn sabaa proclaimed that Alee (RadhiAllaahu Anhu) was the representative of the Messenger of Allaah (Sallalahu Alayhee Wasallam) as per the teachings of Judaism. He was also the first person to announce the obligation in believing in the imaamate (leadership) of Alee (RadhiAllaahu Anhu).

He cursed and abused the enemies of Alee (RadhiAllahu Anhu) and declared them to be disbelievers. It is on this basis the critiques of the Shia religion overwhelming and openly say Shiaism and the raafidhah are from Judaism. (Rijaal al-Kashee pg.101), Tanqeeh al-Maqaal 2/184, Firq ash-Shia pg.43-44, al-Maqalat Wal-Firq pg.21 of Qumi, Rijal at-Tusi pg.51, Tuhfatul Ahbab pg.184, Nasikh at-Tawaarikh 3/393, Kita bar-Rijal pg.469 of Hala, Minhaj al-Maqal pg.303, Sharh Ibn Abi Hadid 2/309 and like this in many other books of the shia)

Under the leadership of abdullah Ibn saba many Jews from various lands came under his wing and he formed an army. He thought he could not openly wage war against the Muslims and destroy their might so therefore he entered the rank of the Muslims under the garbe of Islaam.

He introduced concepts of Judaism, fireworship and Christianity into Islaam thereby making his intentions manifest, ie to avenge, show his animosity and hatred for Islaam. He introduced such beliefs that were not known to the Muslims before, for example he introduced the belief of Hulool (ie incarnation) Allaah incarnates himself into humans. He also claimed the existence of prophethood after the Messenger of Allaah (Sallalahu Alayhee Wasallam).

He was also the person who introduced the following beliefs and concepts into Islaam ie revelations came to Imaams, the coming of angels to the Imaams, the Imaams being infallible, the coming of an Imaam in every era, the beliefs of Wilaayah ie the mastership of Alee (RadhiAllaahu Anhu) over and above others in the Ummah after the Messenger of Allaah (Sallalahu Alayhee Wasallam).

He also introduced the belief that the Imaam will be in hiding, making figurative explanations, the distinction of two types of knowledge ie outer and inner, the distinction of two groups of people one particular and specific and the other the general masses. 

He also introduced the concept of the Sharee’ah being abrogated and the abolishment of Islamic teachings. Whereas in reality none of these concepts had any connection whatsoever with Islaam, so via these false beliefs and concepts he set the seed of doubts and distrust in Islaam all with the intent to destroy Islaam and its teachings.

After abdullah Ibn saba the shias pushed his efforts forward and further expounded on his concepts. Therefore the achievements of the Shia cannot be overlooked in this regard as they really worked hard at this. So first they martyred the son in law of the Messenger of Allaah (Sallalahu Alayhee Wasallam), Uthmaan Ibn Affaan (RadhiAllaahu Anhu) which led to many differences and discords amongst the Muslims. This was the main intent of the Shias and so in this way many groups and sects emerged which were unheard of before. 

In this period of unrest and discord these sects prospered and grew so much so that the Muslims forgot the sources of the religion ie the Quraan and Sunnah. The aim of abdullah Ibn saba and his followers was to cause dissension and fighting amongst the Muslims. The discord they caused was of two types one was in terms of ideology and the other of was of hierarchical nature.

So the Muslims began killing each other due to the hierarchical disputes and due to the ideology discord the Muslims abandoned the teachings of Islaam. They forgot the teachings and advice of the Messenger of Allaah (Sallalahu Alayhee Wasallam) and began to overlook the rulings of the book of Allaah. 

During this period of mass discord, differences and dissension a new methodology was born ie tasawwuf or Soofism. Everyone who looks into the history of Soofism can very easily understand that Soofism began when the animosity and hatred of the judai shias was in full force against Islaam. Judaism gave birth too many groups and sects through Shiaism and whilst looking deep into these various groups and sects it becomes very clear that all of these sects are based on Shiaism.

This is the same situation with Soofism. The first three people in Islamic history who became famous or well known with Soofism were all Shias or at least 2 of them or they were accused of being shia and they were residing in such a place which was known and considered to be the base of Shiaism, which was koofah.

From these individual was Abu Haashim al-Koofee who we have spoken about previously. He was from amongst the famous Shias of koofah and in actual fact it has been said about him that he was a zindeeq ie a heretic and atheist. (Taraiq al-Haqaiq 1/101 of al-Haj Masoom Ali)


The second individual was Jaabir bin Hayaan, the well known orientalist (Louis) Massignon said about him,

“He was the first person in history who became famous with the title of Soofism. His name became well known in the second half of the 8 century of Christianity. He was an alchemist (Alchemy was a quasi-science that centered on the inherent powers of the four elements) and a famous Shia of koofah and he had a special status in Zuhd.” (Da’iratul Ma’arif al-Islaamiyyah Vol.6 pg.419 (urdu) als Tasawuf of Massignon pg.26, Arabic trans)

Nicholson said about him,

“Jaabir bin Hayaan was a famous alchemist who was famously known as Jaabir Soofee. He also like Dhunnoon Misree claimed to have knowledge of the secrets or hidden/inner knowledge and in Soofism he has a special place.” (at-Tasawwuf al-Islami Wat-Tarikh pg.11, translated by Dr. Abi A’la al-Afifi)

The famous orientalists of Czechoslovakia, P. Kraus and M Plessner wrote,

“Jaabir bin Hayaan was an extremist Shia from the Karamattah and Ismaa’eeliyyah sect. He was like the Nusayriyyah such as Muhammad bin Salman. He alongside the other extremist Nusayriyyah (shias) believed in the reincarnation of the souls.” (Da’iratul Ma’arif al-Islaamiyyah Vol.7 pg.6 (urdu), the notes of P. Kraus and M Plessner)

Both orientalist cite from Jaabir bin Hayaan who himself said,

“I gained all the sciences from Ja’afar Saadiq who was a mountain of wisdom, I am just a conveyor of those sciences whereas he (ie Ja’afar Saadiq) was the founder and compiler.” (Da’iratul Ma’arif al-Islaamiyyah Vol.7 pg.6)

Similarly the British (orientalist) Holmyard has also cited the same with regards to Jaabir bin Hayaan and he has also published many of his books. (Refer to the Introduction of the book, ‘Kitaab ar-Rahmah,’ ‘al-Manshoor’ of Holmyard Kitaab al-Bayaan and others.)

The Shias elevate Jaabir bin Hayaan from amongst their people. Sayyid Mohsin Ameen who was a famous Shia writes concerning notable Shias in his book ‘A’yaan ush-Shia’ and he spread the biographical note of Jaabir over more than 30 pages,

“Abu Abdullaah and according to others Abu Moosaa Jaabir bin Hayaan bin Abdullaah at-Tartoosee al-Koofee who was famous with the title of soofee. He was a well known homeopath, a mathematician, a philosopher, expert in astrology, doctor, a rhetoric and the author of many books in these and other sciences. He was into Zuhd and an admonisher, he was from the companions of Imaam Ja’afar Saadiq and from the noteworthy Shias. His works and treatise number so many that the human mind is amazed. It is said he authored over 3,900 books on different sciences such as logical and philosophy. Where he was noted as a philosopher, doctor and author he was also a Zahid (abstained from the worldly things) and admonisher.” (A’ayaan ash-Shia vol.15 pg.87-88, of Mohsin al-Ameen Shia, Dar at-Ta’araf, Printed Beirut)

Then Sayyid Mohsin goes onto mention the names of numerous Shia authors who noted Jaabir bin Hayaan to be from amongst the Shia leaders in their books on rijaals, they also noted him to be from amongst the students of Ja’afar bin Baaqir. He writes,

“Many affairs are established concerning him, from them that he was a Shia, second that he was a famous alchemist, a Soofee, a philosopher and that he was also the student of Imaam Saadiq. His fame was widespread with the famous scholars (of the shia) as well as his books.” (A’ayaan ash-Shia vol.15 p.102)

After this Mohsin Amin established a chapter heading, “(Jaabir bin Hayaan) being Shia.” In this regard he writes,

“Ibn Tawoos counted him from the highly respected scholars of the shia, Ibn Bastaam narrated from him and he narrated from (Ja’afar) Saadiq and it is said he narrated 500 treatises from (Ja’afar) Saadiq as al-Yaa’fe mentions. Ibn Nadeem counted him from the major Shia scholars, he also said he was from the students of Ja’afar Saadiq and not Ja’afar Barmakkee. They did not differ with regards to him being major philosophers or a Shia. His philosophy was Islamic philosophy which opposed the older type and the sharee’ah. Ibn Nadeem further said he authored books in favour of the shia religion as has been mentioned previously.” (A’ayaan ash-Shia vol.15 p.105)

Dr Ahmad Fuwaad al-Ahwaanee also mentions,

“Jaabir bin Hayaans father was killed in khurasaan for being a Shia.” (A’ayaan ash-Shia vol.15 p.87)

Here we would like to mention what the famous shia historian Tehraanee said and he also cites Jaabir bin Hayyaan to be from the shia. Tehraanee writes,

“2 books of Jaabir bin Hayaan are well known, one is ‘ar-Rehma as-Saghir’ and the other is ‘ar-Rehma al-Kabeer’ of Jaabir bin Hayyan as-Soofee at-Toosee al-Koofee he died in 200H.” (adh-Dharee’ah Ilaa Tasneef ash-Shia vol.10 p.171) 

As for what has passed that he was a shia, Ibn Nadeem said,

“Abu Abdullah Jaabir bin Hayyaan bin Abdullaah al-Koofee who was famous with the title of Soofee, the people differ regarding him. The position of the Shias is that he was from the major scholars of the Shias and was a resident of Koofah and from the companions of Ja’afar Saadiq. Some of the people of philosophy say he was a philosopher and he authored many books of logic/rhetoric and philosophy. He was an expert in alchemy and even upto his death he did not teach anyone alchemy. It is said concerning him that he would not stay more than a few days in any city because he would always fear the king or leader of the land would force him to teach him alchemy. It is also said he was a very close to the Barmakki family. He was a companion of Ja’afar bin Yahyaa. The people who agree with this say Ja’afar does not refer to Ja’afar Saadiq but rather Ja’afar Barmakki. The position of the Shias is that this refer to Ja’afar Saadiq. (al-Fehrist pg.498-499 of Ibn Nadeem)

After this Ibn Nadeem writes,

“He has authored many books on the religion of the Shias.” (al-Fehrist pg.498-499 of Ibn Nadeem)

It has also been said concerning him,

“He was the either student or servant of Ja’afar bin Muhammad al-Baaqir.” (Khulasatul Athar 1/213 of al-Mahbi cited from Shaibi)

The evidence for him being a Shia and believing in the Aqeedah of hulool/incarnation, he said himself in his book,

“When I heard the statement of Imaam Saadiq concerning alchemy I was not able to leave its magic and I fell in prostration. Imaam Ja’afar said to me if your prostrating is for me then you are successful forever. Furthermore your family will continue to prostrate to me and prostrating to me is as if your prostrating to yourself.” (Mukhtar Rasail Jabir bin Hayan pg.78)

As for him being a student of Ja’afar Saadiq, Haji Khaleefah has cited this in his book Kashf adh-Dhunun and Ibn Khalkaan in his Wafyaat. (Wafyat al-A’yan, under the dictricial note of Jafar bin Baqir) 

Dr Shaibee although has said many things about Jaabir bin Hayyaan he has also omitted many aspects concerning him. For example he says,

“Although Jaabir was a Soofee he never emphasised on this and he spent most of his time and efforts in alchemy.” (as-Silah Bayna at-Tasawuf Wat-Tashayyu 1/289)

On the other hand Ibn Nadeem has cited from Jaabir Ibn Hayyaan that he said himself,

“I have authored many books on Zuhd and Soofism.” (al-Fehrist pg.503 of Ibn Nadeem)

Qatfi writes in ‘Akhbar al-Hikma’,

“Jaabir bin Hayyaan was a famous philosopher and he was a muqallid of it, which is also known as inner knowledge (Baatin). It is also well known about him that he was well versed in Soofism just as Haarith al-Mahasabi and Sahl bin Abdullah Tustari.” (Akhbar al-Hikma pg.111 of Qatfi)

The well known orientalist Phillip said concerning him,

“He had a special station and status in Zuhd and Soofism.” (Tarikh al-Arab 2/22 of Hata)

So these are first 3 invidious were from amongst those who labelled with Soofism. There are various opinions concerning the death of Jabir, he died between 160H and 200H.


As for the second then his is Abdak, he was a founder of Soofism as the oreintalist Massignon mentioned. In addition to him, the shia researchers, Dr Qaasim Ghanaa and the shia researcher of Iraq, Dr Mustafa ash-Shaibee have both also mentioned this and further verified that he was an extreme shia.

Massignon says,

“Soofiyyah which is a plural term was first heard in 199H / 814CE. During the period of unrest in Alexandria this word emerged. This was approximately the same time when Shiaism emerged and was gaining momentum in Koofah. Abdak was a famous and well known leader of the Soofee Shias and from his beliefs were that the Imaamate is specifically established. In other words every Imaam chooses and appoints the next Imaam. Abdak was a vegetarian and would never eat meat. He died in 210H / 825CE. In this regard we find the usage and the coinage of the word Soofee rose and emerged in Koofah.” (Da’iratul Ma’arif al-Islaamiyyah Vol.6 pg.419, also at-Tasawuf (p.27) of Massignon (Arabic))

Dr Qaasim Ghanaa said in note to this,

“He was a famous Soofee who would remain isolated from the people. He was the first person who became famous with the name of Soofee. During this period the word Soofee was used for those who were Zahids from Koofah. Even during 189H the word Soofee was used for some people like Thawaar al-Askandriyyah. As Abdak never used to eat meat some people used to think he was a zindeeq.

Massignon said the word Soofee was not well known in the first century. The word Soofee became famous in the third century and it was first used for Abdak who was from the elder Shuyookh of the Soofiyyah and he was regarded as an Aqtaab (peg/established pillar that keeps the earth intact). He was from the time before Bishr bin Harith al-Haafi. Similarly Sri Saqtah also came after him as Abdak died in 210H and Bishr bin Harith died in 227H and Sri Saqtah died in 225H. On this basis the word Soofee was first used in Koofah.

So after half a century this word starting echoing in the streets of Baghdad. In Iraq the word Soofee was used for individuals of the al-Malamatiyyah sect, who lived in and around Khurasaan. After the 4th century the word Soofee became very famous and it was not specific to any sect. The white robe the Soofees began to use or wear at the end of the first century was in remembrance of the Khawaarij and the Christians.” (Tarikh at-Tasawuf Fil-Islaam (pg.64-65) Arabic of Dr. Qaasim Ghana

Shaibee transmits from Sama’ani who said,

“Abdaks name was Abdul Karim, his paternal grandson Muhammad bin Ali bin Abdak ash-Shi’ee, he was a well known leader of the Shias.” (al-Insaab of Sama’ani cited from as-Sillah Bayna at-Tasawwuf Wat-Tashayyu (pg.293)

He further writes,

“Abdak, due to his high rank and status was considered to be a leader of the Shias. On one hand he would practice tasawwuf (ie Soofism) and Zuhd and in doing so spread this concept in Koofah and Baghdaad. He was the first individual for whom the word Soofee was used. He came to Baghdaad from Koofah and the people began to use the name Soofee for him. We also know the origin of the word Soofee was Koofah where the Shias used and coined this word. If this is correct then it conclusively proves that Soofism was essentially introduced and formulated by the Shias.” (as-Sillah Bayna at-Tasawwuf Wat-Tashayyu (pg.293)

From the earlier individuals, al-Multee affirms this, he says,

“Abdak was a leader of a heretical group who claimed it was unlawful to seek any benefit from the world except what which was duly needed to preserve life. Utilising this world is only permissible up until the presence of a Just Imaam. If there is no Imaam present then seeking the world in unlawful and its is also therefore unlawful to establish any relations with the local community when there is no just Imaam. Therefore by default any transactions without the presence of a just Imaam will also be rendered to be unlawful.” (at-Tanbiyyah War-Radd pg.1 of Multee, Muhammad Zahid al-Kawtharee’s checking, Edn. Egypt 1360)

He was the second individual to achieve this title, ie the title of Soofee.

As for the third individual we would like to mention here is also Koofee (Abu Haashim al-Koofee) but it is strange that although he was not been accused of being a shia he was however accused of being a zindeeq and an atheist. Haajee Masoom Alee said about him,

“He would wear a long cloak made out of wool and he believed in hulool and I’tihaad (incarnation and unity of essence) like the Christians did. The Christians attributed Hulool and I’tihaad to Eesaa (Alayhis Salaam) whereas he attributed these beliefs to himself. He had numerous statements about Hulool and I’tihaad and he remained engrossed in these beliefs right up until the end, this has been cited from the book Usool ad-Diyaanaat. His lineage was Amawee and his open beliefs showed him to be from amongst the jabariyyah on face value where as in reality inwardly he was an atheist and in order to spread chaos and evil he fabricated and formulated the madhab of soofism in order to confuse and mix this with Islam.” (Taraiq al-Haqaiq (Vol.1 pg.101) of Haajee Masoom Alee)

There is another individual from amongst the strange ones and about whom it is said he was from amongst the founders of Soofism and from its first followers, Dhunoon Misree and it is said about him that he was the first person to define Tawheed in the way which the current day Soofees do. (Refer to ar-Risaalah al-Qushairiyyah of Ibn al-Qaasim Abdul Kareem al-Qushairee, checking Abdul Haleem Mahmood, Edn. Daar al-Kutub al-Hadeethiyyah, Cairo, Egypt)

Therefore he was from the leaders of this sects and all the major Soofee acquired their knowledge from him. Many Soofee Mashaikh lived before him but he was the first person who explained the statements of the Soofee. (Refer to Nufahaat al-Ins (pg.33) of al-Jaamee, Printed in Farsee in Iran.) 

It was also said,

“He is the first individual who propagated and mentioned the stations of mastery and ranks of the Soofees in his area.” (an-Najoom az-Zaahirah (Vol.2 pg.320) of Tagree al-Bardee al-Ataabkee, Edn. Ministry of Culture, Egypt)

It has also been stated about him,

“He is the first person who defined and explained soofee singing and dancing (Wajd=Soofee esoteric chanting dancing ie hadra, Sama= Soofee spiritual holy music ie like the Mushrikee qawaalis).” (Refer to ar-Risaalah al-Qushairiyyah of Ibn al-Qaasim Abdul Kareem al-Qushairee, checking Abdul Haleem Mahmood, edn. Cairo)

On this basis a famous British writer on the Soofee’s said the truth about him,

“It would be just to say this individual was the formulater of Soofism and the leader in this field and many of the historians have cited his biography.” (at-Tasawwuf al-Islami Wat-Tarikh pg.7 of Nicholson, translated by Abi A’la al-Afifi, Edn Cairo)

So this was the last individual who was from amongst the leaders and founders of Soofism. He is also generally accused of being a zindeeq and a magician. It is also been said he believed in craft of talisman and magic.

Just as Imaam Dhahabee has cited from Yoosuf bin Ahmad al-Baghdaadee who said,

“The people of his area considered him to be a zindeeq (Heretic).” (Siyar A’laam an-Nabula 11/533 of Dhahabi)

It is reported from Silmee,

“Dhunoon was the first person who started to mention the status and biographies of the Awliyaa. Abdullaah bin Abdul Hakam opposed Dhunoon. The scholars of Misr considered him to be a zindeeq and exiled him. It is famously known about him that he introduced an ideology that no one before him had done. So the people accused and labelled him to be a zindeeq and exiled him. He would replyninhabe no answer except but silence and I will remain sitting with my hand under my chin and on my cheek.” (Siyar A’laam an-Nabula 11/534)

Imaam Dhahabee has reported about him,

“He would mention Hadeeth very little and not would he admonish or advise the people with ahadeeth. Daarqutnee said about he reported many ahadeeth from Maalik but they need to be looked into.” (Siyar A’laam an-Nabula 11/533)

The famous Soofee Farid ud deen Ittar said about him in his book,

“He was from the Malaamatee sect, he concealed his fear of Allaah and in open he would oppose and go against the Sharee’ah and it was on this basis that most of the Egyptians considered him to be zindeeq. Yet consequently after his death the people began to raise his status and considered him to be master. (Tadhkiratul-Awliya pg.69 of Farid ud din Ittar, printed in Pakistan and also in at-Tasawwuf al-Islami Wat-Tarikh pg.9)

Ibn Nadeem has reported concerning him that he was an expert in alchemy and he knew it very well and further he also fabricated numerous principles pertaining to it. (Ibn Nadeem pg.503-504)

al-Qaftee has said concerning him Dhunoon bin Ibraaheem al-Akhmaimee al-Misree, he was an expert on alchemy like Jaabir bin Hayaan and was an expert in many philosophical sciences. He lived in an area called Burbah which was near al-Akhmaim. This area was traditionally known for logical sciences which had all kinds of pictures and imagery in that area by which the Eemaan of a believer would increase and the disbelievers would become more misguided. (Akhbar al-Ulama Bi-Akhbar al-Hukuma pg.185, cited from the book at-Tasawuf al-Islami Wat-Tarikh pg.9 of Nicholson)

Mas’oodee said about him I found out about Dhunoon by going to al-Akhmaim, there the people knew him has Abul Faidh and the people would talk about his level of Taqwa and Zuhd. He had his own set method for his wordly life and his deen. He would often visit places of or stations where people knew secret things. He would often solve complex problems with his intellect that werw widespread amongst the community. Then Mas’oodee goes onto cite some of the difficult problems Dhunoon solved. (at-Tasawwuf al-Islami Wat-Tarikh, cited from Maruj adh-Dhahab)

After citing these quotes, Nicholson writes,

“Dhunoon was into imagery and statues and the most complex of images that were existence in old churches and temples he would often resolve or interpret and he would have zeal for this. According to the Muslims ancient Egypt was a centre for alchemy and magic and where it originated from. Dhunoon was an Egyptian alchemist and a magician and because magic is unlawful in Islaam, Dhunoon disguised this into karamahs and this si what he presented to the people. It was from his time and period that karamahs became widespread amongst the soofiyyah. He would teach his followers words associated with magic. He was also the first one to use scents and perfumes by which magic would affect individuals.(at-Tasawuf al-Islami Wat-Tarikh, cited from Maruj adh-Dhahab pg.9)

So if he is associated and intermixed with the first three individuals it presents and sketches a clear understanding of soofism.

[1] [TRANS NOTE] Much has been written about this destructive individual however for a quick guide refer to a brief yet succinct work of the late Pakistani Hadith Scholar, Hafidh Shaikh Zubair Ali Zai (Rahimahullah) titled, Who was abdullah ibn Saba, see here.

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