Why did Ali not fight after the Prophet? The prophets were afraid and fled

Ahmad ibn Ali reported that Imam Ali (a.) was asked: “Why did you not fight Abu Bakr and Umar as you fought Talhah, Zubair and Mu’awiyah?” He said: “I was always oppressed and deprived of my right.” Ash’ath ibn Qais then went to him and asked: “O Commander of the Believers, why did you not strike with your sword and claim your right?” He said: “O Ash’ath, I have made a statement. So listen to the answer, keep it in his memory and pay attention to the proof. I took an example from the custom of the prophets. The first of them is Noah when he said: “O my Lord, I am overpowered. So give me assistance.” (54:10) But if someone says: “He did not say that out of fear.” Then he has disbelieved and if not, then the successor is more excusable.The second of them is Lot when he said:”Would that I had power over you or that i could take shelter with a strong support.” (11:80) But if someone says: “He did not say that out of fear.” Then he has disbelieved and if not, then the successor is more excusable. The third of them is Abraham when he said: “I withdraw from you and from what you call besides God.” (19:48) But if someone says: “He did not say that out of fear.” Then he has disbelieved and if not, then the successor is more excusable. The fourth of them is Moses when he said: “Then I fled from you when I feared you.” (26:21) But if someone says: “He did not say that out of fear.” Then he has disbelieved and if not, then the successor is more excusable. The fifth of these is his brother Aaron when he said: “The people considered me weak and almost killed me.” (7:150) But if someone says: “He did not say that out of fear.” Then he has disbelieved and if not, then the successor is more excusable.The sixth of them is my brother Muhammad, the best of the people, when he went into the cave (9:40) and made me sleep in his resting place. (2:207) But if anyone says: “He did not go into the cave out of fear.” Then he disbelieved, and if not, then the successor is more excusable.” Thereupon all the people went to him and said: “O commander of the believers, now we have learned that you are right and we are the sinners who repent, for God has declared you innocent.” [Al-Ihtijaj of At-Tabarsi, Volume 1, page 250 – 251]

أحمد بن علي بن أبي طالب عن علي بن أبي طالب عليهما السلام أنه قيل له: لم لا حاربت أبا بكر وعمر كما حاربت طلحة والزبير ومعاوية؟ فقال علي عليه السلام إني كنت لم أزل مظلوما مستأثرا على حقي فقام إليه الأشعث بن قيس فقال: يا أمير المؤمنين لم لم تضرب بسيفك، ولم تطلب بحقك؟ فقال: يا أشعث قد قلت قولا فاسمع الجواب وعه، واستشعر الحجة، إن لي أسوة بستة من الأنبياء صلوات الله عليهم أجمعين. أولهم نوح حيث قال: رب إني مغلوب فانتصر فإن قال قائل: إنه قال هذا لغير خوف فقد كفر، وإلا فالوصي أعذر. وثانيهم لوط حيث قال: لو أن لي بكم قوة أو آوى إلى ركن شديد فإن قال قائل: إنه قال هذا لغير خوف فقد كفر، وإلا فالوصي أعذر. وثالثهم إبراهيم خليل الله حيث قال: واعتزلكم وما تدعون من دون الله فإن قال قائل: إنه قال هذا لغير خوف فقد كفر، وإلا فالوصي أعذر. ورابعهم موسى عليه السلام حيث قال: ففررت منكم لما خفتكم فإن قال قائل: إنه قال هذا لغير خوف فقد كفر، وإلا فالوصي أعذر. وخامسهم أخوه هارون حيث قال: يا بن أم إن القوم استضعفوني وكادوا يقتلونني فإن قال قائل: إنه قال هذا لغير خوف فقد كفر، وإلا فالوصي أعذر وسادسهم أخي محمد خير البشر صلى الله عليه وآله حيث ذهب إلى الغار ونومني على فراشه فإن قال قائل: إنه ذهب إلى الغار لغير خوف فقد كفر، وإلا فالوصي أعذر. فقام إليه الناس بأجمعهم فقالوا: يا أمير المؤمنين قد علمنا أن القول قولك ونحن المذنبون التائبون، وقد عذرك الله

Ahmad ibn Musa reported that Abdullah ibn Mas’ud said: “They disputed in the mosque of Kufah and said: “How is it that the Commander of the Believers did not fight the three as he fought Talhah, Zubair, A’ishah and Mu’awiyah?” This reached Ali (a.). Then he sent for a call for congregational prayer. When they had gathered, he ascended the pulpit. Then he extolled God and praised Him. Then he said: “You people, this and that has come to me about you.” They said: “The commander of the believers has spoken the truth. We have said this.” He said: “In what I did, I took an example from the custom of the prophets. God said in His Scripture: ‘You certainly have in the messenger of God a beautiful example.” (33:21) They said: “And who are they, O Commander of the Believers?” He said: “The first of them is Abraham when he said to his people: “I withdraw from you and from that which you call instead of God.” (19:48) But if you say that Abraham did not withdraw himself from his people because of some discomfort that was caused to him by them, then you have become disbelievers and if you say that he withdrew himself from them because of some discomfort that he saw from them, then the successor is more excusable and I have an example in the son of his aunt, Lot, when he said to his people: “If only I had power over you or could take shelter with a strong support.” (11:80) But if you say that Lot had power over them, then you have disbelieved and if you say that he had no power, then the successor is more excusable and I have an example in Joseph when he said: “Lord, prison is dearer to me than what they call me to.” (12:33)But if you say that Joseph called his Lord and asked Him for the prison to anger his Lord, then you have become disbelievers and if you say that his purpose was not to anger his Lord, which is why he chose the prison, then the successor is more excusable and I have an example in Moses when he said: “Then I fled from you when I feared you.” (26:21) But if you say that Moses fled from his people without fear of them, then you have disbelieved and if you say that Moses was afraid of them, then the successor is more excusable and I have an example in my brother Aaron when he said to his brother: “Son of my mother, people considered me weak and almost killed me.” (7:150)But if you say that they did not consider him weak and were not close to killing him, then you have disbelieved and if you say that they considered him weak and were close to killing him, which is why he did not respond to them, then the successor is more excusable and I have a beautiful example in Muhammad when he fled from his people and went to the cave out of fear of them and let me sleep in his resting place. But if you say that he fled from his people without fear of them, then you have disbelieved and if you say that he feared them and made me sleep in his resting place (2:207) and went to the cave out of fear of them, then the successor is more excusable.” [Ilal-ush-Shara’i’ of As-Saduq, Volume 1, page 148 – 149]

حمزة بن محمد عن أحمد بن محمد عن الفضل بن خباب عن محمد بن إبراهيم عن محمد بن أحمد عن حمد بن موسى عن عبد الله بن مسعود قال: احتجوا في مسجد الكوفة فقالوا ما بال أمير المؤمنين لم ينازع الثلاثة كما نازع طلحة والزبير وعايشة ومعاوية، فبلغ ذلك عليا فأمر أن ينادي بالصلاة جامعة فلما اجتمعوا صعد المنبر فحمد الله وأثنى عليه ثم قال: معاشر الناس، انه بلغني عنكم كذا وكذا قالوا صدق أمير المؤمنين قد قلنا ذلك، قال فان لي بسنة الأنبياء أسوة فيما فعلت قال الله عز وجل في كتابه: لقد كان لكم في رسول الله أسوة حسنة قالوا ومن هم يا أمير المؤمنين؟ قال أولهم إبراهيم إذ قال لقومه: واعتزلكم وما تدعون من دون الله فإن قلتم ان إبراهيم اعتزل قومه لغير مكروه أصابه منهم فقد كفرتم وان قلتم اعتزلهم لمكروه رآه منهم فالوصي اعذر. ولي بابن خالته لوط أسوة إذ قال لقومه: لو أن لي بكم قوة أو آوي إلى ركن شديد، فان قلتم ان لوطا كانت له بهم قوة فقد كفرتم، وان قلتم لم يكن له قوة فالوصي اعذر، ولي بيوسف ” ع ” أسوة إذ قال: رب السجن أحب إلى مما يدعونني إليه) فان قلتم ان يوسف دعا ربه وسأله السجن لسخط ربه فقد كفرتم، وان قلتم انه أراد بذلك لئلا يسخط ربه عليه فاختار السجن فالوصي أعذر، ولي بموسى أسوة إذ قال: ففررت منكم لما خفتكم فإن قلتم ان موسى فر من قومه بلا خوف كان له منهم فقد كفرتم، وان قلتم ان موسى خاف منهم فالوصي اعذر، ولي بأخي هارون أسوة إذ قال لأخيه: يا بن أم ان القوم استضعفوني وكادوا يقتلونني فإن قلتم لم يستضعفوه ولم يشرفوا على قتله فقد كفرتم وان قلتم استضعفوه وأشرفوا على قتله فلذلك سكت عنهم فالوصي اعذر. ولي بمحمد صلى الله عليه وآله أسوة حين فر من قومه ولحق بالغار من خوفهم وأنامني على فراشه، فإن قلتم فر من قومه لغير خوف منهم فقد كفرتم وان قلتم خافهم وأنامني على فراشه ولحق هو بالغار من خوفهم فالوصي اعذر

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