86 Facts About Ali


Ali helped Muhammad emigrate on the night of Laylat al-Mabit, by sleeping in his place.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,188

Ali defeated the first group in the Battle of the Camel; but in the end, the Battle of Siffin with Mu'awiya was militarily ineffective, and led to an arbitration which ended politically against him.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,189

Ali was eventually killed in the mosque of Kufa by the sword of one of the Kharijites, Ibn Muljam Moradi, and was buried outside the city of Kufa.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,190

Ali was Muhammad's uncle and raised him after his parents died.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,191

Ali's mother, Fatimah bint Asad, belonged to the Banu Hashim; it is said that this made Ali a descendant of Ishmael, the firstborn son of Abraham.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,192

Ali was one of the first believers, either the second or the third, a point of contention among Shia and Sunni Muslims.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,193

None is said to have responded, except Ali, who was thirteen years old at the time, according to Momen.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,194

In 622, which later marked the beginning of the Islamic calendar, Muhammad was informed of an assassination plot by the Meccan elites and it was Ali who is said to have slept in Muhammad's bed instead of him in order to frustrate the assassins' plan and facilitate Muhammad's safe escape to Yathrib.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,195

Ali was 22 or 23 at the time, according to Nasr and Afsaruddin.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,196

Ali designated Ali as one of the scribes tasked with committing the Qur'an to writing.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,197

In 628, Ali wrote down the terms of the Treaty of Hudaybiyyah, the peace treaty between Muhammad and the Quraysh.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,198

In 630, following the revelation of the at-Tawbah, Muhammad sent Abu Bakr to Mecca to give an ultimatum to disbelievers but then dispatched Ali to take over this responsibility after the intervention of Gabriel, according to Shia and some Sunni accounts.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,199

In 631, Ali was sent to Yemen to spread the teachings of Islam.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,200

At the request of Muhammad, Ali is said to have ensured that the Conquest of Mecca was bloodless and later rid Kaaba of its idols.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,201

Ali accompanied Muhammad in nearly all of his military expeditions except the Battle of Tabuk, during which he was left behind in charge of Medina.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,202

Ali commanded the expeditions to Fadak and Yemen in the absence of Muhammad.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,203

Ali vigorously defended Muhammad in the difficult Battle of Uhud and the Battle of Hunayn.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,204

Together with Zubayr, Ali is said to have overseen the killing of the Banu Qurayza men for treachery in 5 AH, though the historicity of this incident has been disputed.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,205

Ali halted the caravan at Ghadir Khumm and addressed the pilgrims after the congregational prayer.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,206

Some six months after Muhammad's death, Ali pledged his allegiance to Abu Bakr when his wife, Fatima, died.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,207

In particular, Shia and some early Sunni sources allege a final and more violent raid to secure Ali's oath, led by Umar, in which Fatima suffered injuries that shortly led to her miscarriage and death.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,208

Al-Tabari writes that Ali held the lieutenancy of Madina during Umar's expedition to Syria and Palestine.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,209

Ali returned Muhammad's estates in Medina to Ali and Muhammad's uncle, Abbas, though Fadak and Khayber remained as state property under Umar's control.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,210

Ali was critical of Uthman's rule, alongside other senior companions, such as Talha.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,211

Ali opposed Uthman for changing the prayer ritual, and for declaring that he would take whatever he needed from the money.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,212

Ali frequently acted as a mediator between the rebels and Uthman during the uprising.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,213

Al-Tabari writes that Ali attempted to detach himself from the besiegers of Uthman's residence as soon as circumstances allowed him.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,214

Later, Ali said that any pledge should be made publicly in the mosque.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,215

Since the majority of Ali's subjects were nomads and peasants, he was concerned with agriculture.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,216

Ali's supporters expelled him from Kufa, and joined 6 to 12 thousand people to Ali's army.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,217

Aisha was not harmed; Ali treated her with respect and sent her to Medina under his care.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,218

Ali spared Aisha's army and released them after taking allegiance.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,219

Ali prevented his troops from seizing their property as spoils of war, prevented women and children from being enslaved, which led the extremists of his corps to accuse him of apostasy.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,220

Ali managed to persuade Zubair to leave the battle by reminding him of Muhammad's words about himself.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,221

Ali entered Basra and distributed the money he found in the treasury equally among his supporters.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,222

Immediately after Battle of the Camel, Ali turned to the Levant, where Mu'awiya was the governor.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,223

Ali wrote a letter to him but he delayed responding, During which he prepared for battle with Ali.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,224

Ali then moved his armies north and the two sides encamped at Siffin for more than one hundred days, most of the time being spent in negotiations which was on vain.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,225

Ali warned his troops that Mu'awiya and Amr were not men of religion and Qur'an and that it was a deception, but many of could not refuse the call to the Qur'an, some of them even threatened Ali that if he continued the war, they would hand him over to the enemy.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,226

Ali was forced to accept a ceasefire and consequently the arbitration of the Qur'an, according which each side were to "choose a representative to arbitrate the conflict in accordance with the Book of God".

FactSnippet No. 1,552,227

Hence, the very same people who had forced Ali into the ceasefire, broke away from him, and became known as the KharijitesThey asserted that according to Qur'an, the rebel, should be fought and overcome; and since there is such an explicit verdict in Qur'an, leaving the case to judgment of human was a sin.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,228

Ali made a visit to the camp and managed to reconcile with them.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,229

Ali refused to accept this state of affairs and found himself technically in breach of his pledge to abide by the arbitration.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,230

Ali protested that it was contrary to the Qur'an and the Sunnah and hence not binding.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,231

Ali asked Kharigites to hand over the killers, but they asserted that they killed together; and that it was permissible to shed the blood of Ali's followers.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,232

Ali then handed over the flag of amnesty to Abu Ayyub al-Ansari and announced that whoever goes to that flag, and whoever leaves Nahrawan, and has not committed a murder, is safe.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,233

Finally, Ali waited for the Kharijites to start the battle, and then attacked the remnants of their army with an army of about fourteen thousand men.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,234

Between 7 and 13 members of Ali's army were killed, while almost all Kharijites who drew their swords were killed and wounded.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,235

Ali was faced with armed uprisings by the remnants of the Kharijites, as well as opposition in eastern provinces.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,236

However, as the extent of the rampage by Muawiya's forces became known to the public, it appears that Ali finally found sufficient support for a renewed offensive against Muawiya, set to commence in late winter 661.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,237

Ali was assassinated at the age of 62 or 63 by a Kharijite, ibn Muljam, who wanted revenge for the Battle of Nahrawan.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,238

Ali had fourteen sons and nineteen daughters from nine wives and several concubines, among them Hasan, Husayn and Muhammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah played a historical role, and only five of them left descendants.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,239

Ali had four children from Muhammad's youngest daughter, Fatima: Hasan, Husayn, Zaynab and Umm Kulthum.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,240

Ali's other well-known sons were Abbas, born to Umm al-Banin, and Muhammad ibn al-Hanafiyyah, from a freed slave girl named Khawla al-Hanafiyya.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,241

Ali rebelled against Mu'awiya's son, Yazid, in 680 AD and was killed in the battle of Karbala with his companions.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,242

Ali's dynasty considered the leadership of the Muslims to be limited to the Ahl al-Bayt and carried out several uprisings against rulers at different times.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,243

Later, Ali's family revolted against the Abbasids, the most important of which were the uprising of Shahid Fakh and the uprising of Muhammad al-Nafs al-Zakiyya.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,244

Mus'haf of Ali is said to be a copy of the Qur'an compiled by Ali, as one of the first scribes of the revelations.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,245

Shia sources write that, after Muhammad's death, Ali offered this codex for official use but was turned down.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,246

Ali was one of the main reciters of the Qur'an, and a recitation of him has survived, which, according to some scholars, is the same as the recitation of Hafs that has long been the standard version of the Qur'an.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,247

Kitab Ali is often linked to al-Jafr, which, in Shia belief, is said to contain esoteric teachings for Muhammad's household, dictated to Ali by Muhammad.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,248

Kitab al-Diyat on Islamic law, attributed to Ali, contains instructions for calculating financial compensation for victims and is quoted in its entirety in Man La Yahduruhu al-Faqih, among others.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,249

Ali is the first transmitter of several hundred hadiths, attributed to Muhammad, which have been compiled in different works under the title of Musnad Ali, often as part of larger collections of hadith, such as Musnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal, a canonical Sunni source.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,250

In person, according to Veccia Vaglieri, Ali is represented as bald, heavy built, short-legged, with broad shoulders, a hairy body, a long white beard, and affected by eye inflammation.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,251

Shia accounts about the appearance of Ali are markedly different from Veccia Vaglieri's description and are said to better match his reputation as a capable warrior.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,252

Ali [Ali] was amongst us as one of us, of gentle disposition, intense humility, leading with a light touch, even though we were in awe of him with the kind of awe that a bound prisoner has before one who holds a sword over his head.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,253

Accounts about Ali are sometimes tendentious, Veccia Vaglieri asserts, because the conflicts in which he was involved were perpetuated for centuries in polemical sectarian writings.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,254

However, neither Lammens nor Caetani, according to Veccia Vaglieri, took into consideration Ali's widely reported asceticism and piety, and their impact on his policies.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,255

Veccia Vaglieri notes that Ali fought against those whom he perceived as erring Muslims as a matter of duty, in order to uphold Islam.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,256

In victory, Ali was said to have been magnanimous, risking the protests of some of his supporters to prevent the enslavement of women and children.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,257

Ali showed his grief, wept for the dead, and even prayed over his enemies.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,258

Tabatabai similarly writes that the rule of Ali was based more on righteousness than political opportunism, as evidenced by his insistence on removing those governors whom he viewed as corrupt, including Mu'awiya.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,259

Ali retains his stature as an authority on Qur'anic exegesis and Islamic jurisprudence, and is regarded as a founding figure for Arabic rhetoric and grammar.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,260

Ali has been credited with establishing the authentic style of Qur'anic recitation, and is said to have heavily influenced the first generation of Qur'anic commentators.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,261

Ali is central to mystical traditions within Islam, such as Sufism, and fulfills a high political and spiritual role in Shia and Sunni schools of thought.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,262

In Muslim culture, Madelung writes, Ali is respected for his courage, honesty, unbending devotion to Islam, magnanimity, and equal treatment of all Muslims.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,263

Ali is remembered, according to Jones, as a model of uncorrupted socio-political and religious righteousness.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,264

Esposito further suggests that Ali still remains an archetype for political activism against social injustice.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,265

Ali is remembered as a gifted orator though Veccia Vaglieri does not extend this praise to the poems attributed to Ali.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,266

Ali is credited by some, such as Nasr and Shah-Kazemi, as the founder of Islamic theology, and his words are said to contain the first rational proofs among Muslims of the Unity of God.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,267

In Shia Islam, Ali is considered the first Imam and the belief in his rightful succession to Muhammad is an article of faith among Shia Muslims, who accept the superiority of Ali over the rest of companions and his designation by Muhammad as successor.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,268

Unlike Muhammad Ali was not the recipient of a divine revelation, though he is believed to have been guided by divine inspiration in Shia theology.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,269

Ali is the spiritual head of some Sufi movements and nearly all Sufi orders trace their lineage to Muhammad through him, an exception being Naqshbandis, who reach Muhammad through Abu Bakr.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,270

In Sufism, Ali is regarded as the founder of Jafr, the occult science of the symbolic significance of the Arabic alphabet letters.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,271

The primary sources for scholarship on the life of Ali are the Qur'an and hadiths, as well as other texts of early Islamic history.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,272

Since the character of Ali is of religious, political, jurisprudential, and spiritual importance to Muslims, his life has been analyzed and interpreted in various ways.

FactSnippet No. 1,552,273