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117) Bay’at al-Ridwan – The Misaaq that garnered Allah’s Pleasure

8 May 2016

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

لَّقَدْ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ إِذْ يُبَايِعُونَكَ تَحْتَ الشَّجَرَةِ فَعَلِمَ مَا فِي قُلُوبِهِمْ فَأَنزَلَ السَّكِينَةَ عَلَيْهِمْ وَأَثَابَهُمْ فَتْحًا قَرِيبًا

(Surat al-Fath: 18)

Allah's Good Pleasure was on the Believers when they gave their bay’at (misaaq) to you (Rasulullah) under the Tree: He knew what was in their hearts, and He sent down Tranquility (sakeenat) to them; and He rewarded them with a speedy Victory (fathe-mubeen).

The Quran Majeed refers to Misaaq – including synonyms such as ‘ahd and bay’at – more than seventy times. These references include the misaaq of Anbiya’ AS, even Adam Nabi AS.

Misaaq is an oath or covenant with Allah Ta’ala at the hands of his waliyy.  Addressing Rasulullah SA, the Quran Majeed asserts, “those who give bay’at (Misaaq) to you are in truth giving bay’at (Misaaq) to Allah. It is Allah’s hand that is [placed] on their hands” (Surat al-Fath: 10).

When a Mumin pledges his allegiance to Allah Ta’ala and His waliyy he commits essentially to two things:

  1. The first part of the commitment pertains to belief and ma’rifat. Specifically, the belief in the Oneness of Allah Ta’ala, and that Muhammad is his messenger (Rasul), Ali Amirul Mumineen is his successor (wasiyy) and that in every age an Imam in the lineage of Muhammad and Ali must be present whom we must recognize. The succession of Imams, father to son, by Nass will continue till the Day of Judgment. In the time of the Imam’s seclusion, the Imam’s Dawat will continue through the three maratib: Dai, Mazoon and Mukasir. During seclusion the recognition of the Dai is equivalent to the recognition of the Imam. The succession of Dais by Nass will continue until the Imam’s zuhoor or the Day of Judgment. The crux of this belief system is that in every day and age, an Imam, a representative of Allah Ta’ala, a successor of the knowledge and authority of Rasulullah and living guide, must be present whom we must recognize for guidance and our salvation. In the Imam’s seclusion that role is fulfilled by Dai as the representative of the Imam. 
  1. The second commitment pertains to action (‘amal). Each Mumin who takes the Misaaq pledges to act upon the stipulations of the Shari’at and the seven pillars: walaayat, tahaarat, salaat, zakat, sawm, hajj and jihad. The actionable part of walaayat is ta’at and obedience to Imamuz-zaman and, in his seclusion, his Dai. We specifically also pledge to pray the five farizat namaaz, do the roza of Shehrullah, submit the obligatory zakaat, perform Hajj if able, and physically and monetarily aid the Imam and his Dai in any struggle. 

The Misaaq is a covenant that every Mumin gives to Allah Ta’ala and his waliyy. The Quran Majeed asserts that each individual will be answerable for the pledges of his Misaaq (Surat al-Isra’: 34). When a Mumin gives Misaaq, that is when he is spiritually connected to the Imam and receives a spark of his divine noor (nuqtatut-noor). The more knowledge a Mumin attains and the more ‘amal he performs, his noor increases.

In the ayat quoted above, the Quran Majeed expresses Allah Ta’ala’s pleasure with those who pledged their allegiance and gave Misaaq to Rasulullah, under the shade of a tree in Hudaybiyyah, outside Makka Mukarramah. After the hijrat to Madina Munawwara, Rasulullah returned to Makka six years later to perform Umrah. He was stopped at Hudaiybiyyah where he negotiated with the representative of the Quresh tribe of Makka to give him safe passage for Umrah. As the negotiators left to confer with others in Makka, the possibility that they may be returning not by themselves with an answer but instead with an army could not be ruled out. In that tense and uncertain time, the relatively small group of people with Rasulullah – 1400 to 1500 according to most reports – renewed their allegiance and Misaaq to him. Allah Ta’ala was pleased by the resolve of these Mumineen and expressed his pleasure and for this reason this Misaaqbecame known also as bay’at al-ridwan (the Misaaq that garnered Allah’s pleasure). Allah Ta’ala bestowed them with tranquility (sakeenat)and promised them a clear victory in the near future (wa asaabahum fathan qareeba).

As recorded in the kitaabs of Dawat, every Imam and every Dai has taken Mumineen’s Misaaq. Every Imam and every Dai has renewed the Misaaq after the wafaat of his predecessor.

MisaqAfter the wafaat of 53rd Dai al-Mutlaq Syedna Khuzaima Qutbuddin RA, his successor the 54th Dai al-Mutlaq Syedna Taher Fakhruddin TUS renewed the Misaaqof mumineen on the auspicious day of Mab’as, the day Rasulullah was commanded to call people to Islam. It was also an auspicious coincidence that Rasulullah’s Dai took Misaaqunder the shade of trees, reminiscent of Rasulullah’s bay’at al-ridwan. Sitting in Darus Sakina, Mumineen felt the sakeenat that Allah Ta’ala bestowed in their hearts and were assured of Allah Ta’ala’s promise of victory.

We offer hamd and shukur to Allah Ta’ala that 1400 years after bay’at al-ridwan we gave Misaaq and bay’at to Rasulullah’s Dai, sitting under the shade of a tree in Darus Sakina. By doing so, we garnered the same pleasure (rida) from Allah Ta’ala as those who gave bay’at to Rasulullah. With our sincere commitment to Allah Ta’ala we were bestowed with the same tranquility (sakeenat) in Darus Sakina that the muhajireen and Ansaar were bestowed with. Having given Misaaq to the Dai al-Haqq, we are as assured of Allah Ta’ala’s promised victory as they were.

May Allah Ta’ala grant us the inspiration and strength to remain faithful to our Misaaq and to act upon the commitments that we have pledged to Him. May Allah Ta’ala give longest life and Fath-e mubeen to Rasulullah’s Dai – through him we have pledged our Misaaqto Imamuz-zaman SA and Allah Ta’ala. May Allah grant tawfeeq to those who had given their Misaaqto the 52nd Dai Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA, to give Misaaqto the successor of his successor, Syedna Taher Fakhruddin.