As far as my research is concerned, whatever is alleged against these noble men and their friends is the work of the opponents of Islam. After the era of the companions, various so called Muslims, driven by their egos, have levelled allegations upon either one or the other, from among these noble men. However, despite this the truth has always prevailed and has never remained veiled in secrecy. Of course, in this era when Muslims became unfamiliar with their own history and religion, the opponents of Islam either singled out narrations of the enemies of Islam from the history of Islam, or derived false conclusions from true events, and crafted such works of history that would bring blame upon the companions and through them, upon Islam. At this time, since these non-Muslim historians are becoming the eyes through which Muslims behold everything, for this reason, Muslims have accepted everything they assert. Fearing the ‘higher criticism’ of Europe, even those who have had the opportunity to study original Arabic works of history for themselves, have considered the false and fabricated narrations upon which European writers base their research as being authentic and superior, and declared other narrations as being inaccurate. In this manner, the current age has become almost devoid of such people who have endeavoured to analyse events in their original form.
Remember well that the notion of certain eminent companions being responsible for the disorders in Islam is absolutely false. After a collective study of the accounts of these people it cannot even be imagined that they attempted to destroy and ruin Islam for their personal interests or benefit. Those who have embarked to find causes for the emergence of dissension and discord in Islam within the community of the companions have faltered gravely. The causes of disorder arose from other quarters and the only hope for reaching an accurate conclusion is if they are investigated in these quarters. If the false narrations, which have been spread in relation to that era, are accepted as being true, not a single Companion(ra) can be absolved from having taken part in this disorder and not a single one appears to have stood firmly upon virtue and honesty. This is such an attack upon the truth of Islam, that both foundation and basis are uprooted. Hazrat Masih(as) [the Messiah] states that a tree is recognised by its fruit1 and due to these narrations, the fruits of the tree of Islam prove to be so bitter that no one would even be prepared to take them for free, let alone at an expense. However, would anyone who has studied the spiritual power of the Holy Prophet(sa) to even the slightest degree, be ready to accept such a notion? Of course not! It is far from reason to presume that such people who lived in the company of the Holy Prophet(sa); were his eminent and devoted Companions; were very near relatives of the Holy Prophet(sa) and all of the other Companions without exception, deviated to such an extent in merely a few years that all of them fell into conflict due to personal interests, not due to religious reasons, and this misfortune shook the very core of Islam. It is unfortunate that although Muslims do not explicitly state that the companions created disorder in order to destroy and ruin Islam, but they have accepted the narrations of such people as being true, who had not fully accepted Islam and had only made a verbal declaration of faith. Then, they have relied on the research of bitter enemies of Islam who were in pursuit of its destruction. Ultimately, therefore, such people concede that the community of the companions was, God forbid, completely devoid of virtue and honesty.2
In my exposition, I shall bear in mind not to mention dates so that it is not difficult to understand and the subject does not become confusing. The real objective of this lecture is to familiarise college students with certain events of early Islam. For this reason, I shall also abstain from quoting Arabic quotations insofar as possible and shall describe events in the form of a narrative.
1 Luke (6:43-44) [Publishers]
2 Whilst reviewing this article a second time for publication, I have given various references of historical importance as footnotes and in order to make the book less burdensome for those who study it, I have sufficed with the use of references from Tarikhut-Tabari only, with a few exceptions.