On martyrdom of Imam Reza (AS), learned scholar of Prophet’s Household

Monday , 11/22/2021 - 11:38
On martyrdom of Imam Reza (AS), learned scholar of Prophet’s Household
According to renowned historians and traditionists, Imam Reza (AS), the eighth Imam of Shia Muslims, was born on Thursday or Friday 11, Zul-Qa'dah in the year 148 A.H. Therefore, the year of his birth coincides with his great ancestor’s martyrdom, Imam Sadiq (AS). Imam Reza’s noble father was Imam Musa al-Kazem (AS), the seventh Shia Imam, and his dear mother was a dignified lady Tuktam.

Imam Reza (AS) inherited the knowledge of his grandfather the Messenger (pbuh) of God, thus becoming its pioneering fountainhead that quenched the thirst of those who were thirsty for knowledge. History narrates a great deal of his scholarly stance and intellectual discourses in which he achieved victory over those who opposed the Divine Message, excelling in various branches of scholarship with which he provided the seekers of knowledge and the thinkers of the time.
Al-Ma’mun, the Abbasid caliph, used to put him to test by asking him about almost everything, and he always provided him with the answer, always derived from the Holy Quran.
Rajaa ibn Abul-Dahhak, who was commissioned by al-Ma’mun to escort al-Reza (AS) to his court, said: "By God! I never saw anyone more pious than him nor more often remembering God at all times nor more fearful of God, the Exalted. People approached him whenever they knew he was present in their area, asking him questions regarding their faith and its aspects, and he would answer them and narrate a great deal of hadith from his father who quoted his forefathers till Ali (AS) who quoted the Messenger (pbuh)of God.” 
In his discourse regarding the issue of succession, al-Ma’mun said: "I do not know any man on the face of earth who is more suited (to be heir to the throne) than this man [Imam Reza (AS)]."
We do not need the testimony of anyone to convince us of the distinction enjoyed by Imam Reza (AS) due to his knowledge over all others. It suffices to review the books of hadith, which are filled with his statements and dictation in various arts which every individual, regardless of the loftiness of his degree of knowledge, became dwarfed upon meeting him, feeling his inferiority and the superiority of Imam Reza (AS).
Studying Imam Reza’s spiritual character and social behavior is very significant, because it would pave the way for a better understanding of His Holiness and learning life lessons from him.
Imam Reza (AS) considered prayer a gift from Allah, emphasized on recommended fasting, in his speech and practice reminded the magnificence of the Quran to his disciples, paid special attention to personal hygiene, always showed spiritual and physical vigor, proper time management and optimal use of the moments of life, attached importance to vigor and mirth as well as tidiness and beauty as admirable qualities. He was very humble and very affectionate toward people, socializing with them in a favorable way. 
Imam Reza (AS) recommended benefaction and goodness to parents, necessity of hospitality, and accompaniment with the deprived. 
In addition to the scholarly discussions with the people of the Scripture and various intellectual trends in Merv, Imam Reza (AS) promoted the knowledge and the religious insight of that region. The number of Imam Reza's debates and dialogs with the people of the Book and representatives of Christians, Jews, Manichaeans, Zoroastrians, Sabians, and Islamic sects are numerous.
Acceptance of the Crown Prince position was under intense pressure and the Imam accepted it when the threats of Ma’mun became serious, as reluctance is clear from the text of the Crown Prince position pledge (which is fortunately available in historical sources). In any case, when the Imam was forced to accept the position, he decided to represent his virtuous image in a counted and cultural manner and these actions and his popularity among the various classes, from the public to the ministers and counselors, eventually scared Ma’mun and he decided to eliminate the Imam.
Stories regarding the method al-Ma’mun employed to kill Imam Reza (AS) are abundant. Abul-Faraj and al-Mufid say that he killed him by poisoned pomegranate juice and poisoned grape juice. Regardless of the method of assassination, what seems to be acceptable, having examined all texts and the historical background of the political circumstances at that time, al-Ma’mun was indeed the one who killed Imam Reza (AS), and we do not have the slightest doubt or hesitation about that.
Amongst the indications of the fact that Imam's martyrdom was carried out by al-Ma’mun is that the people gathered on the same day of the martyrdom and everyone believed that the Caliph had poisoned the Imam. The importance of the matter is because people present in the Imam's living area, more than others had understood the situation and political conditions of the Imam and Ma’mun. Some historians who believed in the poisoning of the Imam include Ibn Hajar, Ibn Sabbagh MalikI, Mas‘udI, QundusI HanafI, Ibn TabaTaba, etc. 
In the context of traditions, which are among the most important historical sources and documents, there are some points about the martyrdom of Imam Reza, including:
In a tradition attributed to Imam Ja’far Sadiq (AS) he says “A child among my children will be killed in the land of Khorasan.”
In a tradition from Imam Reza (AS), it is stated that “By God, there is not one of us but martyred.” He was told: “Who will kill you?” The Imam said: “The worst people in my time will kill me with poison.”
The most famous and the strongest comment regarding the date of the martyrdom of the Imam is on Friday, the last day of the month of Safar 203 AH. The Imam’s blessed age upon martyrdom was 55. The Imam was martyred in the city of Toos and as he himself foresaw and recommended, he was buried at a point in the Sanabad, which later was called Mashhad al-Reza.