The Combats Among The Sahâba

Hadrat Imâm-i Rabbânî says in the 679th letter of the second volume of his Maktûbât:
The combats among the Sahâba, e. g. , the event of Camel and the event of Siffîn, were done with good intentions and for pious reasons, not for the desires of the nafs, with obstinacy or hostility. For, they all were great. Their hearts had been purified in the sohbat (company) of our Master, the Prophet, and with his blessed looks, no evils such as avarice, grudge or hostility have been left. Both their peace and their opposition or combats were for the truth. Each of them acted in accordance with his own ijtihâd. The disagreements among them were based on pure difference of ijtihâd and were definitely free and far from vices such as obstinacy and hostilatiy against one another.

There are two or ten thawâbs for those with correct ijtihâd, and one thawâb for those who erred. Then, we should not speak ill of those who erred as we do not speak ill of those who were right. For, these, too, received thawâb. The savants of Ahl as-sunnat declare that the Amîr (Hadrat Alî) was right in these combats. Those ijtihâds which disagreed with his were wrong. But none of them can be spoken ill of, nonetheless for calling any one of them a 'disbeliever' or 'sinner'.

Hadrat Alî declared in these combats, "Our brethren have parted from us. They are not disbelievers, nor sinners. For, they have been acting in accordance with their ijtihâd." Our Prophet 'sallallâhu alaihi wa sallam' declared: "Avoid speaking ill of my Sahâba!"

Then, we have to regard all the Sahâba of the Prophet as great and speak about them with reverence and good will. We should not think ill of any of those great people! We should consider the combats among them to be better than others' peace. This is the way to salvation. For, loving the Sahâba arises from loving our Master, the Prophet. Enmity against them means enmity against him. The great savant Abû Bakr-i Shiblî said, "A person who does not respect the Sahâba does not have îmân in Muhammad 'alaihissalâm'."