Hazrat Ali (RA) is one of the most noteworthy and respectable personalities in the history of Islam. Other than being among the most beloved companions of Prophet Mohammad (Peace and Blessing of Allah be upon Him), he was also his paternal cousin. Moreover, he also earned the status of Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) son-in-law when the latter gave his beloved daughter, Hazrat Fatima’s hand in marriage to him. Hazrat Ali’s significance in Islamic history was further enhanced when he earned the glory of being the fourth caliph of Islam.
Hazrat Ali (RA) was the son of Abu Talib, another important man in the life of Holy Prophet (PBUH). After the demise of his mother and grandfather, Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) was brought up by his uncle Abu Talib. In turn, he took the responsibility of raising his thirty years younger cousin. Hazrat Ali was, therefore, brought up under the care of the Apostle of Allah (PBUH).
Hazrat Ali (RA) was only 10 years old when Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) began spreading (preaching) the message of Islam. In the midst of the subsequent opposition from the pagans of Arab, Hazrat Ali stood by Allah’s Apostle (PBUH) with unfaltering support and became the youngest person to enter the circle of Islamic faith.
Noteworthy Events of Hazrat Ali’s Life
A large number of incidences, stories and events are associated with the life of this revered man. Here are some of the most noteworthy events which contribute to his high esteem to this day.
- When the Holy Prophet (PBUH) was leaving his house for migration to Madina, his bloodthirsty enemies had surrounded his house with the intention to assassinate him. That night, Hazrat Ali (RA) slept in the Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) house to deceive his enemies into believing that the Prophet (PBUH) was still inside. In this way, Hazrat Ali risked his life for the sake of his beloved cousin and mentor. Moreover, he was also entrusted with the responsibility of returning the possessions of the people of Mecca which had been deposited with the Holy Prophet (PBUH), Mecca’s most trustworthy person, for safekeeping. Hazrat Ali did not migrate to Madina until he had returned everything, even though his life was still at risk among the angry Meccans who had just missed the chance to assassinate the Holy Prophet (PBUH).
- Hazrat Ali (RA) made his brave contributions to all the battles fought during the life of the Prophet (PBUH). He never turned away from fighting in the cause of Allah. In fact, his bravery earned him the title of “Asadullah” which means Allah’s lion.
- During the rebellion against the caliphate of Hazrat Usman, Islam’s third caliph, the agitators had surrounded his house, cutting off the supply of food and water. Hazrat Ali (RA) played a significant role in providing food to the imprisoned family of Hazrat Usman through his sons. He put their life at risk by making them supply provisions to Hazrat Usman against the will of the furious troublemakers.
Hazrat Ali’s High Status in Islam
Hazrat Ali (RA) rightfully deserves a high status in Islam due to his various significant contributions. He had also been bestowed an elevated status by Allah due to his relation with the Holy Prophet (PBUH). He had the honor of continuing the progeny of the Apostle of Islam through his two sons and a daughter: Hazrat Hassan, Hazrat Hussain and Hazrat Zainab.
The Holy Prophet (PBUH) appreciated the wisdom and knowledge of Hazrat Ali. In the words of the Prophet (PBUH), “I am the city of knowledge and Ali is its gate.”
Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) also honored his devoted cousin in these words, “Only a hypocrite does not love Ali and a believer does not hate him.”
Hazrat Ali (RA) as Islam’s Caliph
Hazrat Ali (RA) was deeply dismayed at the assassination of Hazrat Usman. When the insurgents compelled him to accept the responsibility of the government, he declined. It was only after a general consent from the public that he accepted this responsibility. The public considered him worthy to be the incharge of Madina’s government.
Hazrat Ali (RA) ran the office according to the principles of Islam and Sunnah. Before his caliphate, the Muslim Ummah had already been divided into factions. Hazrat Ali (RA) tried to deal with this persisting problem. However, the situation kept growing worse and he made a great number of enemies. In 40 AH, one of his opponents Khawrij Abd-al-Rehman ibn Muljam attacked him while he was offering his prayer in the Mosque of Kufa. The resulting fatal wounds led to his demise some days later. The fourth caliph of Islam passed away after serving for five years.
Hazrat Ali (RA) has left a legacy behind through his words of wisdom and his exemplary character. He had been extremely devoted to the Holy Prophet (PBUH) and received the tidings of Paradise during his life time. All devoted Muslims learn from his lofty personality and revere him throughout the Muslim world.