Abdullah bin Saba : in Shia texts
Recently, some Shi'ites began to claim that "Abdullah bin Saba'" is a myth and an imaginative personality who never existed in history who is portrayed by legend as being a mysterious person and difficult to prove that he ever existed.
When Islam came, some Jews attempted to abort this new religion. Their endeavors took many forms and shapes, from attempts to assassinate the Apostle of Allah [saw] to waging wars that ended in deporting most of them from al-Madinah or executing those who betrayed the truce. Similarly, they were convinced that the best way to destroy Islam and the Muslims' unity was to resort to the plot of deception. A Yemenite Jew by the name of Abdullah bin Saba' pretended to have embraced Islam to plant secretly the seeds of this new cult which he successfully performed. He arrived from Yemen to al-Madinah during the era of Zunnurain Caliph Othman bin 'Affaan [ra] and started to plan and cook the plot, waiting for the proper opportunity which he found in Ali [ra].
As I earlier said that Recently, some Shi'ites began to claim that "Abdullah bin Saba'" is a myth and an imaginative personality who never existed in history, how true?
It is natural for them to be ashamed of this fact, but our question to them is, why they kept silent for 14 centuries and not a single scholar of them disputed this fact throughout this period? Furthermore, what do they say about the giant scholars of theirs who confirmed the existance of this Jew, and what do they say about their "Infallible" Imams who likewise confirmed his existence? Certainly, if Ibn Saba' was a myth, then this is a blow to their credibility and "Infallibity" and the entire footings of Shi'ism has thereby collapsed.
Nevertheless, we'll prove our point, not by using Sunni or Orientalists sources, but will call to the witness stand their very own historians and whom they call deputies of Allah on earth, the "Infallible" Imams:
Update : From al-shia.com
Allama Mulla Bagir Majlisi in his book "Biharul anwar" (25/287) wrote something simmular:
أهل العلم أن عبدالله بن سبا كان يهوديا فأسلم ووالى عليا عليه السلام وكان يقول وهو على يهوديته في يوشع بن نون وصي موسى بالغلو فقال في إسلامه بعد وفاة رسول الله صلى الله عليه وآله في علي عليه السلام مثل ذلك .
وكان أول ( 3 ) من أشهر بالقول بفرض إمامة علي عليه السلام وأظهر البراءة من أعدائه وكاشف مخالفيه وأكفرهم ( 4 ) ، فمن ههنا قال من خالف الشيعة : أصل التشيع والرفض مأخوذ من اليهودية
"Some scholars have asserted that ibn Saba was a Jew who accepted Islam and started voicing his opinion of the `wilayat' (divine appointment) of `Ali. While a Jew, he propounded the exaggerative notion that Yusha ibn Nun was divinely appointed to succeed Prophet Musa, he thus adopted a similar stance with regard to `Ali in relation to the Holy Prophet. He was the first to subscribe to the belief of Imamate, and he openly vitriolated his enemies (i.e. the first three Caliphs) and branded them as infidels. That is why those who opposses to shia say that: The origin of Shi'ism is thus based on Judaism."
The website is not online anymore but we have accessed to the page through archive.org
First: Abu Muhammad al-Hasan bin Musa al-Nubakhti:
The well known Shi'ite "Who's Who" critic, al-Najashi in his al-Fihrist, wrote:
"al-Hasan bin Musa: Abu Muhammad al-Nubakhti, the well versed in dialectism, who surpassed the peers of his time prior and after the 300 (hijra)"
al-Fihrist: al-Najashi, p.47; From Ash-Shi'a was-Sunnah, p.22
At-Tusi, in his al-Fihrist wrote:
"Abu Muhammad, dialectist and philosopher, was an Imami (shi'ite), an upright in faith, trustworthy (thiqah)....and he is one of the scholars' landmarks"
al-Fihrist: At-Tusi, p.98; From Ash-Shi'a Was-Sunnah, p.22
Nurallah at-Tasturi, in his "Majaalis al-Mu'mineen" wrote:
"al-Hasan bin Musa, one of the celebrity of this sect and its scholars. He was a dialectist, a philosopher, an Imami in faith"
Majaalis al-Mu'mineen: Nurallah At-Tasturi, p.177; from Ash-Shi'a was-Sunnah, p.22
Having established the authority of this historian from the Shi'ites own sources, let's read what Mr. al-Nubakhti had to say about Ibn Saba':
"Some knowlegable people from companions of Ali said that: "Abdulla ibn Saba was yahudi who accepted islam. He was supporter of Ali . While a Jew, he propounded the exaggerative notion that Yusha ibn Nun was divinely appointed to succeed Prophet Musa, after accepting islam, he adopted a similar stance with regard to `Ali in relation to the Holy Prophet (after his death). He (ibn Saba) was the first man who told that believe in imamat of Ali is obligatory, and he openly vitriolated his enemies (i.e. the first three Caliphs) and branded them as infidels. That is why those who opposses to shia say:"The origin of Shi'ism is thus based on Judaism""
Firaq al-Shi'a: Nubakhti
Second: Abu Amr bin Abdul Aziz al-Kash-shi: Another well known "Who's Who" critic who also mentioned Ibn Saba', and one of the earliest Shi'ite biographist. In the "Introduction" to his book, known as "Rijaal al-Kash-shi", we read:
"He is trustworthy (thiqah), an adept, an expert in traditions and men, very knowledgeable, well founded in faith, on the upright path......The most important books on biographies of men are four, which are heavily depended on and (considered) the four basic pillars in this field, the most important and earliest of all is: Ma'rifat al-Naqileen anil-A'immah As-Sadiqeen (Knowing the Transmittors on The Authority of The Truthful Imams) known as Rijaal al-Kash-shi".
Rijaal al-Kash-shi: al-Najaashi, Introduction.
Having established the authority of this scholar, let's examine what he has to say about the Jew Ibn Saba':
"Some people of knowledge mentioned that Abdullah bin Saba' was a Jew, who embraced Islam and supported Ali. While he was still a Jew, he used to go to extremism in calling Yousha' bin Noon as the appointee (successor) of Moses, thus after embracing Islam - after the demise of the Messenger of Allah [pbuh] - he said the like about Ali. It was him who first publicly announced the mandatory Iamamah for Ali, rejected and disowned his enemies, debated his opponents and called them Kafirs."
Rijaal al-Kash-shi: Abu 'Amr bin Abdul Aziz al-Kash-shi, p.101
al-Mamaqaani, author of "Tanqeeh al-Maqaal", who is an authoritative Shi'i biogrophist quoted the like in his said book, p.184
Now, if these Shi'ites authorities lied about the identity of Ibn Saba', then the possibility of them lying about other matters, like the events of Siffien, the murder of al-Hussain [ra] and other Shi'i dogmas, stands greater. Consequently, if this is the case, doubt will overshadow any and all events and narrations recorded by them.
"Tanqeeh al-Maqaal", p.184
But assuming that the foresaid men are liars, and error infiltrated to their books, and therefore their testimony is not a proof (hujjah) nor binding, then we invite you to examine the testimony of those who are "Infallible" and looked at as "Deputies of Allah" whose sayings are equal to Allah's as the Shi'ites claim:
1. "Narrated to me Muhammad bin Qolawaih: Narrated to me Sa'd bin Abdullah, said: Narrated to us Yaqoub bin Yazeed and Muhammad bin Issa from Ali bin Mahziyar, from Fadalah bin Ayoub al-Azdi, from Abban bin Othman said: I heard Abu Abdullah [as] saying:
'May Allah curse Abdallah bin Saba', he claimed a divineship for Amirul-Mu'mineen (Ali) [as]. By Allah, Amierul-Mu'mineen [as] was volunterily the slave of Allah. Woe to him who lie about us, for there are people who say about us what we don't say about ourselves,we clear ourselves to Allah from them, we clear ourselves to Allah from them'."
2. "Narrated Yaqoub bin Yazeed from Ibn Abi Omair and Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Issa, from his father and al-Husain bin Sa'eed, from Hisham bin Salim, from Abu Hamza al-Thumali said: Ali bin al-Husain [as] said:
'May the curse of Allah be upon those who tell lies about us. I mentioned Abdullah Ibn Saba and each hair in my body stood up, Allah cursed him. Ali (AS) was, by Allah, a proper servant of Allah, the brother of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH). He did not earn the graciousness/honor from Allah except with the obedience to Allah and His Messenger. And (similarly) the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) did not earn the honor from Allah except with his obedience to Allah'."
3. Narrated Muhammad bin Khalid At-Tayalisi, from Ibn Abi Najran, from Abdullah bin Sinaan said: Abu Abdullah [as] said:
"We are a family of truthfulness. But we are not safe from a liar telling lies about us to undermine our truth with his lies in front of people. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) was the most truthful among people in what he said (Lahjatan) and the most truthful among all humanity; and Musaylima used to lie on him. The Commander of Believers (AS) was the most truthful one among the creation of Allah after the Messenger of Allah; and the one who used to lie on him, and tried to undermine his truthfulness and claimed lies about Allah, was Abdullah Ibn Saba." .
Ibid, pp. 100,101
We'll call to testimony al-Hasan bin Ali al-Hilly, another famous Shi'i biographist, and examine what he had to say about the Jew Ibn Saba':
"Abdullah bin Saba' returned to disbelief and showed extremism. He claimed prophethood, and that Ali [as] was Allah (in the flesh). Ali [as], for three (consecutive) days asked him to repent but he failed, thereupon, he [as] burned him (alive) with seventy other men who attributed divinship to him"
Kitaab al-Rijaal: al-Hilly, p.469, printed in Tehran, Iran 1383 h. From Ash-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu', p.56
We'll further call another witness for the stand, the Shi'i biogrophist, al-Astra Abadi, and examine his tesitmony:
"Abdullah bin Saba' claimed prophethood and that Ali [as] is himself Allah the Most Exalted. Upon hearing this charge, Amirul-Mu'mineen called and inquired it from him. When he admitted, he said to him: back off from this say and repent, may your mother lose you. However;(Ibn Saba') refused, and (Ali) held him for three days, and, still refusing to repent, he therefore burned him(alive)"
Manhaj al-Maqaal: al-Astar Abadi, p.203, from: Ash-Ashia wat-Tashayyu', p.56
We have another witness, which we like to take his statement, a Persian historian, in his "Tareekh Shi'i" confirmed and wrote:
"When Abdullah bin Saba' learned that the opposition to Othman in Egypt was greater, he went there and pretended the knowledge and righteouseness until the people trusted him. After he established himself there, he started to propagate his ideas and theory, that for each Prophet was an appointed successor, and the appointee (wasi) of the Apostle of Allah and his successor is no other than Ali, who is blessed with knowledge and Fatwa, ornamented with generousity and courage, and known for his honesty and righteouseness. He further said: The Ummah has wronged Ali, usurped his right, the right of Khilafah (succession) and Walayah (allegiance). It is encumbant upon you all to aid and support him. He (immediately) revoked his obedience and allegiance to Othman, and touched many Egyptians with his sayings and deeds, and they revolted against Othman"
Tareekh Shi'i: Rawdat As-Safa, vol.2, p.292, Tehran Ed., From: Ashi'a wat-Tashayyu' , p.56
And there are hundreds of other books who affirmed and confirmed, that Shi'ism started with this Jewish Yemenite who pretended "Love of Ahlul-Bayt" and sought justice for them, as a plot to crack the unity of the Muslim Ummah who defeated the Jewish tribes in the Arabic Penensula. It is not amazing therefore, that the alliance between some Jews and the Persian Majoos (Zoroastrians) prosper to revenge from those who destroyed their dreams and humiliated a civilization not long ago, was one of two super powers in the world. This is briefly why Shi'ism prospered mainly in the land of the Fire worshippers, Persia.
Allah knows best