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The Sufyani


السفياني 

The Sufyani 


Revolt only for the Imam and his followers 


محمد بن يعقوب، عن على بن إبراهيم، عن أبيه، عن صفوان بن يحيى، عن عيص بن القاسم قال سمعت أبا عبد الله عليه السلام يقول: عليكم بتقوى الله وحده لا شريك له وانظروا لانفسكم، فوالله إن الرجل ليكون له الغنم فيها الراعى، فإذا وجد رجلا هو أعلم بغنيمه من الذى هو فيها يخرجه ويجئ بذلك الرجل الذي هو أعلم بغنمه من الذي كان فيها، والله لو كانت لاحدكم نفسان يقاتل بواحدة يجرب بها ثم كانت الاخرى
باقية يعمل على ما قد استبان لها، ولكن له نفس واحدة إذا ذهبت فقد والله ذهبت التوبة فأنتم أحق أن تختاروا لانفسكم، إن أتاكم آت منا فانظروا على اي شئ تخرجون، ولا تقولوا خرج زيد، فان زيدا كان عالما وكان صدوقا ولم يدعكم إلى نفسه، وإنما دعاكم إلى الرضا من آل محمد صلى الله عليه وآله ولو ظهر لوفى بما دعاكم إليه إنما خرج إلى سلطان مجتمع لينقضه، فالخارج منا اليوم إلى اي شئ يدعوكم إلى الرضا من آل محمد صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم فنحن نشهدكم انا لسنا نرضى به وهو يعصينا اليوم وليس معه أحد، وهو إذا كانت الرايات والالوية أجدر أن لا يسمع منا إلا من اجتمعت بنو فاطمة معه، فوالله ما صاحبكم إلا من اجتمعوا عليه إذا كان رجب فاقبلوا على اسم الله، وإن أحببتم أن تتأخروا إلى شعبان فلا ضير، وإن أحببتم أن تصوموا في أهاليكم فلعل ذلك يكون أقوى لكم، وكفاكم بالسفياني علامة 

Muhammad b. Ya`qub from `Ali b. Ibrahim from his father from Safwan b. Yahya from `Ays b. al-Qasim. 

He said: I heard Abu `Abdillah عليه السلام saying: The taqwa (fear of) Allah is upon you, the One and without any partners, and watch over yourselves. By Allah, if someone has chosen a shepherd to care for his sheep, but afterward finds someone else who is wiser than the first one for the task, he will leave the first one and employ the services of the wiser one. By Allah, if you had two life-times, and you experimented with the first one, and were left with the second lifetime, then there would be no difficulty in utilizing the experience of the first lifetime. But the reality is other than this. Every person has no more than one self, for which, if it falls into peril, there is no possibility for repentance or return. Therefore, it is necessary for you to carefully evaluate and select the best way for your selves. Hence, if one among us came to you and called upon you to revolt, think carefully and find out for what purpose he has revolted. Do not simply say [to justify his revolt by saying something like:] “Well, Zayd b. `Ali also had arisen before!” The reason is that Zayd was a learned and truthful person and had not called upon you to acknowledge his own leadership; rather, he was calling towards a person who would be accepted from Muhammad’s Household (Rida min Aal Muhammad) صلى الله عليه وآله. Had he succeeded, he would have acted upon his promise and would have handed over the power to its owner. Zayd revolted against the government so that he could overthrow it.1 But what is the one who has emerged today calling you? Is he calling you towards a person who is accepted from Muhammad’s Household (Rida min Aal Muhammad) صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم? I am calling you to bear witness that we are not pleased with this person’s revolt. This man has not even reached power and he has already started opposing us. And when he does seize power and raises his flag, he would certainly not submit to us in obedience. Hence, accept the call of the one about whom all the descendants of Fatima are in agreement. That person is your Imam and your leader. When the month of Rajab dawns, come to the help of Allah. There is no problem if you wish to delay it until the month of Sha`ban. And, it is even better for you, if you wished to keep the fast of Ramadan with your family. If you need any signs, it is sufficient to remind yourselves about the rise of Sufyani. (al-Kafi)

(sahih) (صحيح)


[1] According to this narration, the revolution of Zayd was a legitimate fight against the Umayyad dynasty that would allow the Imam to assume power over the Umma. Not all revolutions against oppressors are legitimate, even if the rebels are the lesser of the two evils. Revolutions may lead to chaos, and so the Imams after al-Husayn refrained from partaking in these fights so that they may work to preserve the religion of Islam. 


The Sufyani’s advent is inevitable 


حدثنا محمد بن موسى بن المتوكل رضي الله عنه قال حدثنا عبد الله بن جعفر الحميري عن أحمد بن محمد بن عيسى عن الحسن بن محبوب عن أبي حمزة الثمالي قال قلت لأبي عبد الله عليه السلام إن أبا جعفر عليه السلام كان يقول إن خروج السفياني من الأمر المحتوم قال لي نعم واختلاف ولد العباس من المحتوم وقتل النفس الزكية من المحتوم وخروج القائم عليه السلام من المحتوم فقلت له كيف يكون ذلك النداء قال ينادي مناد من السماء أول النهار ألا إن الحق في علي وشيعته ثم ينادي إبليس لعنه الله في آخر النهار ألا إن الحق في السفياني وشيعته فيرتاب عند ذلك المبطلون 

Muhammad b. Musa b. al-Mutawakkil رضي الله عنه narrated. He said: `Abdullah b. Ja`far al-Himyari from Ahmad b. Muhammad b. `Isa from al-Hasan b. Mahbub from Abu Hamza ath-Thumali.

He said: I said to Abu `Abdillah عليه السلام: Abu Ja`far عليه السلام used to say: The advent of the Sufyani is inevitable. He said: Yes, and the schism of the children of `Abbas is from the inevitable, the killing of Nafs az-Zakiyya is from the inevitable, and the appearance of the Qa’im عليه السلام is from the inevitable. So I said to him: How would the call be? He said: The Caller will call from the heavens at the beginning of the day: Is not the truth with `Ali and his Shi`a? Then Iblees لعنه الله will call at the end of the day: Is not the truth with the Sufyani and his followers? And upon this, the wrongdoers will be deluded. (Kamal ad-Deen)

(mursal kal-sahih) (مرسل كالصحيح)


أخبرنا أحمد بن محمد بن سعيد قال: حدثنا علي بن الحسن، عن العباس ابن عامر، عن عبدالله بن بكير، عن زرارة بن أعين، عن عبدالملك بن أعين، قال: كنت عند أبي جعفر (عليه السلام) فجرى ذكر القائم (عليه السلام)، فقلت له: أرجو أن يكون عاجلا ولا يكون سفياني، فقال: لا والله إنه لمن المحتوم الذى لابد منه. 

Ahmad b. Muhammad b. Sa`eed narrated. He said: `Ali b. al-Hasan narrated from al-`Abbas b. `Amer from `Abdillah b. Bukayr from Zurara b. A`yan from `Abd al-Malik b. A`yan1. He said:

I was with Abu Ja`far عليه السلام and the Qa’im عليه السلام was mentioned, so I said to him: I plead that it (i.e. his appearance) is soon and that the Sufyani[‘s appearance] does not occur. So he said: No, by Allah, it is a guaranteed matter that must occur. (Nu`mani’s Ghayba)

(hasan muwathaq) (حسن موثق)


[1] `Abd al-Malik b. A`yan was a good (hasan) companion of Imam Muhammad al-Baqir and Imam Ja`far as-Sadiq. He was the brother of the famous Zurara b. A`yan.


The Yamani’s appearance 


وعنه ، عن سيف بن عميرة، عن بكر بن محمد الازدي ، عن أبي عبد الله عليه السلام قال: خروج الثلاثة: الخراساني والسفياني واليماني في سنة واحدة في شهر واحد في يوم واحد، وليس فيها راية بأهدى من راية اليماني يهدي إلى الحق . 

And from him from Sayf b. `Umayra from Bakr b. Muhammad al-Azdi from Abu `Abdillahعليه السلام.

He said: The going forth of three: The Khurasani and the Sufyani and the Yamani in a single year, in a single month, in a single day, and there is no standard in it [that day] that is more guided than the standard of the Yamani, guiding to the truth. (Tusi’s Ghayba)

(apparently sahih) (صحيح على ظاهر) 


عنه، عن ابن فضال، عن ابن بكير، عن محمد بن مسلم قال: يخرج قبل السفياني مصري ويماني . 

From him from ibn Faddal from ibn Bukayr from Muhammad b. Muslim.

He said: Prior to the Sufyani, an Egyptian (Misri) and a Yamani will go forth.1 (Tusi’s Ghayba)

(muwathaq) (موثق) 


وبهذا الاسناد، عن ابن فضال، عن حماد، عن إبراهيم بن عمر، عن عمر بن حنظلة ، عن أبي عبد الله عليه السلام قال: خمس قبل قيام القائم من العلامات: الصيحة والسفياني، والخسف بالبيداء، وخروج اليماني، وقتل النفس الزكية . 

And by this isnad from ibn Faddal from Hamad from Ibrahim b. `Umar from `Umar b. Hanthalah from Abu `Abdillah عليه السلام.

He said: Five of the signs shall be prior to the rising of the Qa’im: the cry, the Sufyani, the swallowing by the desert, the coming out of the Yamani, and the killing of Nafs az-Zakiyya. (Tusi’s Ghayba)

(hasan muwathaq) (حسن موثق)


[1] Although the previous hadith noted that the Yamani and the Sufyani would appear on the same day, the two narrations can be reconciled. The Yamani may appear earlier in the day; or perhaps the “day” refers to a lengthened period of time. And Allah knows best.


The Sufyani’s rise and reign 


وعنه، عن ابن أبي عمير، عن عمر بن أذينة، عن محمد بن مسلم قال: سمعت أبا عبد الله عليه السلام يقول: إن السفياني يملك بعد ظهوره على الكور الخمس حمل امرأة. ثم قال: أستغفر الله حمل جمل، وهو من الامر المحتوم الذي لابد منه . 

And from him from ibn Abi `Umayr from `Umar b. Udhayna from Muhammad b. Muslim.

He said: I heard Abu `Abdillah عليه السلام say: After his appearance, the Sufyani will rule over five places1 in the same timespan as a woman’s pregnancy. Then he said: I seek forgiveness from Allah, the pregnancy of a camel.2 And this is from the guaranteed matters that must occur. (Tusi’s Ghayba)

(sahih) (صحيح)


الفضل، عن الحسن بن محبوب، عن عمرو بن أبي المقدام، عن جابر الجعفي، عن أبي جعفر عليه السلام قال: الزم الارض ولا تحرك يدا ولا رجلا حتى ترى علامات أذكرها لك وما أراك تدرك: إختلاف بني فلان، ومناد ينادي من السماء، ويجيئكم الصوت من ناحية دمشق بالفتح، وخسف قرية من قرى الشام تسمى الجابية. وستقبل إخوان الترك حتى ينزلوا الجزيرة، وستقبل مارقة الروم حتى ينزلوا الرملة، فتلك السنة فيها اختلاف كثير في كل أرض من ناحية المغرب. فأول أرض تخرب الشام، يختلفون عند ذلك على ثلاث رايات: راية الاصهب، وراية الابقع، وراية السفياني. 

al-Fadl from al-Hasan b. Mahbub from `Amr b. Abi’l Miqdam from Jabir al-Ju`fi from Abu Ja`far عليه السلام. 

He said: Remain on the ground and do not mobilize a hand or a leg until you see the signs that I mention to you. I do not perceive that you [O Jabir] will see them: A schism between Banu fulan,3 a Caller who will call from the sky, a liberating sound that will come to you from the direction of Damascus, the swallowing-up of a village from the villages of Sham called aj-Jabiyya, the advance of the Turkish brothers until they descend to the peninsula (jazira),4 the advance of the rebels of Rome until they descend to ar-Ramla.5 In that year there will be many schisms in the whole Earth from the direction of the West (al-maghrib). The first land that will be destroyed is Sham, and they will schism at that point upon three banners: the red banner, the spotted banner, and the banner of the Sufyani. (Tusi’s Ghayba)

(sahih) (صحيح)


[1] According to another narration, these five places are: Damascus, Homs, Aleppo, Jordan, and Palestine. 

[2] It is unclear if this was a mistake made by the Imam or the narrator, as the “peace be upon him” stamp is sometimes present depending on the copy. Either way, the mistake was corrected later in the narration. 

[3] This may refer to Banu `Abbas, and Allah knows best.

[4] This may refer to the Arabian Peninsula or an unnamed island.

[5] ar-Ramla is a place in Palestine.
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