15. Some of the Reasons for Differences in the Narrations

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[1/73] رجال الكشي: عن ابن مسعود، عن علي بن الحسن، عن العباس بن عامر وجعفر ابن محمد بن حكيم، عن أبان بن عثمان، عن أبي بصير قال: قيل لأبي عبد الله عليه السلام – وأنا عنده -: إن سالم بن أبي حفصة يروي عنك أنك تتكلم على سبعين وجها لك من كلها المخرج، قال: فقال: ما يريد سالم مني؟ أيريد أن أجيئ بالملائكة؟! فوالله ما جاء بها النبيون، ولقد قال إبراهيم: إني سقيم والله ما كان سقيما وما كذب، ولقد قال إبراهيم: بل فعله كبيرهم هذا وما فعله وما كذب، ولقد قال يوسف: إنكم لسارقون والله ما كانو سارقين وما كذب


1. [1/73] Rijal al-Kashshi: From Ibn Masud from Ali b. al-Hasan from al-Abbas b. A’mir and Ja’far b. Muhammad b. Hukaym from Aban b. Uthman from Abi Basir who said: It was said to Abi Abdillah عليه السلام – while I was with him: Salim b. Abi Hafsa narrates from you that you speak with seventy facets – for each facet you have a way out [a possible alternative interpretation to avoid speaking a lie], so he said: what does Salim want from me? does he want me to come with the angels (to prove my truth)?! For by Allāh – not even the prophets came with them, and Ibrahim had said “I am sick” (37:88) but by Allāh he was not sick nor did he lie, and Ibrahim also said: “rather this biggest one of them (idol) has done it” (21:63) while he had not done it nor did he lie, and Yusuf said: “you are thieves” (12:70) and by Allāh they were not thieves nor did he lie.


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[2/74] الكافي: علي بن ابراهيم، عن أبيه، عن ابن أبي نجران، عن عاصم بن حميد، عن منصور بن حازم قال: قلت لأبي عبد الله عليه السلام: ما بالي أسألك عن المسألة فتجيبني فيها بالجواب ثم يجيئك غيري فتجيبه فيها بجواب آخر؟ فقال: إنا نجيب الناس على الزيادة والنقصان قال: قلت: فأخبرني عن أصحاب رسول الله صلى الله عليه واله صدقوا على محمد صلى الله عليه واله أم كذبوا؟ قال: بل صدقوا قلت: فما بالهم اختلفوا فقال: أما تعلم أن الرجل كان يأتي رسول الله صلى الله عليه واله فيسأله عن المسألة فيجيبه فيها بالجواب، ثم يجيبه بعد ذلك بما ينسخ ذلك الجواب فنسخت الأحاديث بعضها بعضا


2. [2/74] al-Kafi: Ali b. Ibrahim from his father from Ibn Abi Najran from A’sim b. Humayd from Mansur b. Hazim who said: I said to Abi Abdillah عليه السلام: what is my condition – I ask you about an issue so you answer me in it with a certain answer, then someone other than me comes to you so you answer him in it with a different answer? He said: we answer the people with addition (in-depth) and with deletion (in-brief). I said: so inform me about the companions of the messenger of Allāh صلى الله عليه واله – were they truthful about Muhammad صلى الله عليه واله or did they lie? He said: they were truthful, I said: so what was the matter with them that they differed? He said: don’t you know that a man used to come to the messenger of Allāh صلى الله عليه واله and ask him about a thing so he answers him in it with an answer, then he answers him after that with that which abrogates the former answer, so the narrations superseded one another.


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[3/75] الكافي: أحمد بن إدريس، عن محمد بن عبدالجبار، عن الحسن بن علي، عن ثعلبة بن ميمون، عن زرارة بن أعين، عن أبي جعفر عليه السلام قال: سألته عن مسألة فأجابني ثم جاء ه رجل فسأله عنها فأجابه بخلاف ما أجابني، ثم جاء رجل آخر فأجابه بخلاف ما أجابني وأجاب صاحبي، فلما خرج الرجلان قلت: يا ابن رسول الله رجلان من اهل العراق من شيعتكم قدما يسألان فأجبت كل واحد منهما بغير ما أجبت به صاحبه؟ فقال: يا زرارة! إن هذا خير لنا وأبقى لنا ولكن ولو اجتمعتم على أمر واحد لصدقكم الناس علينا ولكان أقل لبقائنا وبقائكم قال: ثم قلت لابي عبدالله عليه السلام: شيعتكم لو حملتموهم على الاسنة أو على النار لمضوا وهم يخرجون من عندكم مختلفين، قال: فأجابني بمثل جواب أبيه


3. [3/75] al-Kafi: Ahmad b. Idris from Muhammad b. Abd al-Jabbar from al-Hasan b. Ali from Tha’laba b. Maymun from Zurara b. A’yan from Abi Ja’far عليه السلام, he (Zurara) said: I asked him about a matter so he answered me, then a man came to him and asked him about it so he answered him with a different answer to mine, then another man came so he answered him with a different answer to the one he gave me and the first man, so when the two men had exited I said: O the son of the messenger of Allāh – two men from the people of Iraq from among your followers came to ask you – but you answered each one of them with a different answer? He said: O Zurara, this is better and more safe for us and you, for if you were all to unite upon one position the people would believe you [in what you say] about us and that would be a threat to both our and your survival, he (Zurara) said: then I [later] said to Abi Abdillah عليه السلام: your followers – if you were to make them move in the face of arrows or on fire they would do it but they come out from you having differences! He said: so he answered me with the same reply as his father.


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[4/76] علل الشرائع: أبي، عن سعد، عن محمد بن الوليد والسندي، عن أبان بن عثمان، عن محمد بن بشير وحريز، عن أبي عبد الله عليه السلام قال: قلت له: إنه ليس شئ أشد علي من اختلاف أصحابنا، قال: ذلك من قبلي


4. [4/76] Ilal al-Sharai: My father from Sa’d from Muhammad b. al-Walid and al-Sindi from Aban b. Uthman from Muhammad b. Bashir and Hariz from Abi Abdillah عليه السلام, he (Hariz) said: I said to him: there is nothing more difficult for me [to bear] than the differences [that exists] between our fellows, he said: that is from me (I purposely caused that).


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[5/77] الكافي: علي بن إبراهيم، عن أبيه، عن عثمان بن عيسى والحسن بن محبوب جميعا، عن سماعة، عن أبي عبد الله عليه السلام قال: سألته عن رجل اختلف عليه رجلان من أهل دينه في أمر كلاهما يرويه: أحدهما يأمر بأخذه والآخر ينهاه عنه، كيف يصنع؟ فقال: يرجئه حتى يلقي من يخبره، فهو في سعة حتي يلقاه، وفي رواية اخرى بأيهما أخذت من باب التسليم وسعك


5. [5/77] al-Kafi: Ali b. Ibrahim from his father from Uthman b. Isa and al-Hasan b. Mahbub all together from Sama’a from Abi Abdillah عليه السلام, he (Sama’a) said: I asked him about a man who is answered oppositely by two of his co-religionists (i.e. Shi’as) in regards a matter – [and] both transmit it [their answers – on your authority], one of them obligates it while the other forbids it – what should he do? he said: he withholds [doing anything] until he accesses one who will inform him (of the true position), and he is respited until such a time as he meets him. [And in another narration [the Imam said]: whichever of them he acts by – suffices him – if done in subservience (with the intention of obeying)].


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Shaykh Asif al-Mohseni: معتبر - Muʿjam al-Aḥādīth al-Muʿtabara