Virtues of the Ahlul Bayt
Aisha radiyallahu ‘anha says:
خرج النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم غداة وعليه مرط مرحل من شعر أسود، فجاء الحسن بن علي فأدخله، ثم جاء الحسين فدخل معه، ثم جاءت فاطمة فأدخلها، ثم جاء علي فأدخله ثم قال: (إنما يريد الله ليذهب عنكم الرجس أهل البيت ويطهركم تطهيرا)
The Prophet ﷺ went out one morning wearing a striped cloak (made) of a black camel’s hair. Hassan ibn ‘Ali came and the Prophet ﷺ placed him under it. Then came Hussain and he entered (the cloak) with him. Then came Fatimah and Rasulullah ﷺ placed her under it. Then came ‘Ali and he ﷺ placed him under it. Then he said, “Allah intends only to remove from you the impurity [of sin], O people of the [Prophet’s] household, and to purify you with [extensive] purification.” [Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2424]
This narration holds great virtue for those that were covered in this sheet; they were chosen and purified by Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala. This narration and others also refutes the notion that the Sahabah radiyallahu ‘anhum concealed the virtues of the Ahlul Bayt.
Who are the Ahlul Bayt?
As is understood by the use of this term (Ahl) in the cardinal sources (Qur’an and Sunnah), it can be said that the term ‘Ahl’ when used in combination with ‘Bait’, i.e. in Ahlal-Bait, begets a meaning that refers to three different households, which are:
1- The Household (Bait) of Lineage.
2- The Household (Bait) of Residence.
3- The Household (Bait) of Birth.
The Household of Lineage
Male descendants of Abd al- Mutallib ibn Hashim are part of the Ahlul Bayt of the Prophet ﷺ from the side of his lineage, as the term “Ahl” also spans over the sons of the closest grandfather. Descendants of Hashim bin Abd Munaf, however, were limited only to Shaibah, who was known as A’bd al Mutallib, as Ibn Hazm stated that no offspring could be traced to Hashim except from A’bd al- Mutallib, due to which he was the only one who carried the honour and position of the Banu Hashim. [Jamharah Ansab al-‘Arab: p.14.]
The Home of Residence
The Prophet’s ﷺ wives are part of his Ahlul Bayt from the side of his residence, and the use of the word: Ahlul Bayt, for one’s wives, has been a common practice by customs and traditions of the Arabs.
The Home of Birth
Prophet’s children are also included into his Ahl-al Bait from the side of birth. This is a comprehensive term that includes all children born to him, including those male children who passed away young, such as Qasim, ‘Abdullah and Ibrahim; and all of his female children and their progeny, such as Zainab along with her children from Abul-‘Aas bin al-Rabi’, namely Ali, Omamah; Ruqayyah along with her son Abdullah bin Uthman bin ‘Affaan, his daughter Um-Kulthûm; and Fatimah along with her two sons Hasan and Hussain along with all of their descendants. (RA) In this regard, al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-Haithami R said: “The nobility resulting from being part of Prophet’s ﷺ noble person is not limited to Fatimah’s children alone.
Researchers have stated that if the children of Zainab from Abul A’as or those of Ruqayyah and Um Kulthoom from Uthman had lived, they would have had the same nobility and supremacy as that of the children of Fatimah.” (RA)
The term Ahlul Bayt is thus applicable to these three groups of people (family, wives and children). My colleague Mufti Yusuf Moosagie will this afternoon take us through the proofs and evidence of this.