In the end will they return to their Lord, and We shall then tell them the truth of all that they did. Holy Qur’an, 6:108

Often Shias are asked by their Sunni counterparts, “Why do you hate the companions (sahabahs)?” The question resembles that which is asked by some of the Americans to the Muslims post 9-11, “Why do you (Muslims) hate us (Americans)?”

The truth is that the Shia do not hate the companions (sahabahs) of the Prophet; however, there are some of them who did not merit becoming the leaders of the ummah – and for rightful reasons. I ask the reader to bear with me as I present forth the research in this chapter, which will bring a better understanding as to why the Shia are not too fond of certain companions.

One of the primary beliefs in Sunni Islam is the sacredness of the sayings and deeds of the Holy Prophet’s companions (the sahabah). Even today, merely inferring that a particular companion said or did something is enough to engender complete and total respect for that companion, and his words and deeds, and unquestioning compliance with what he or she said or did. For this reason, it is extremely important to investigate what exactly makes a person a sahabah of the Prophet. After all, thousands of people if not more, were in the presence of the Holy Prophet, and yet some of them were hypocrites and enemies of the Prophet according to the Qur’an;[1] therefore, how can they be relied upon?

[1] “Round about you [Muhammad and his community] and among you in Madinah are hypocrites and they are obstinate in hypocrisy. You do not know them, We know them, twice shall We punish them and in addition they shall be sent to a grievous penalty.” (9:101)

When Power and Piety Collide by Sayed Moustafa al-Qazwini

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