Abar 'Ali

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A photo of the area Abar 'Ali in Medina

Ābār ʿAlī (آبار علي), an area covered with date palm groves in the south of Medina having water wells which attributed to Imam 'Ali (a). This area was in the old Medina-Mecca route and now is located in the new Medina-Mecca highway. It is said that it was named Abar 'Ali since Imam 'Ali (a), who did not have a position in the time of the three first caliphs, dug some wells in this area for the pilgrims of hajj and other people. One of the contemporary Sunni scholars attributed 'Abar 'Ali to 'Ali b. Dinar, the sultan of Darfur, south of Sudan; but mentioning the name of 'Abar 'Ali in the Muslim sources before 'Ali b. Dinar's travel to Mecca rejects this claim.

Meaning[edit | edit source]

Ābār or abyār is the plural form of bi'r (Arabic: بئر) and means wells[1] . Abar 'Ali is the name of an area 7 or 9 kilometers away from the south of Medina[2] at the route to Mecca. It is located in Wadi l-'Aqiq in the west side of Mount 'Ir which is close to Dhu l-Hulayfa. This area has abundant water wells and palm dates.[3] It is referred to as abyār and ābyār in Shia[4] and Sunni[5] jurisprudential sources as well as books of hajj rituals. Many Sunni writers of 9th century afterwards, believe that Abar 'Ali, Dhu l-Hulayfa, and the mosque of al-Shajara are the names of one place which is the miqat for Medinans.[6] The famous name of that area is Abar 'Ali.[7]

Location[edit | edit source]

This area is located amidst two routes:

  1. The old Medina-Mecca route, which exits from Bab 'Anbariyya, passes Hijaz railway to Syria, and goes towards Mecca.
  2. The new Medina-Mecca highway, which starts from the square of Quba Mosque.[8] On the traffic sign there, the names of Abar 'Ali, Dhu l-Hulayfa, and al-Shajara Mosque come together.[9]

Naming[edit | edit source]

Regarding the naming of this area as Abar 'Ali, Some Sunni sources said: Imam 'Ali (a) has dug many wells there.[10] Shia sources also said that Imam 'Ali (a) has dug many wells there during the time of the three first caliphs when he did not have an official position; then he endowed them for the pilgrims of hajj and other people.[11]

It is said in some sources that these wells existed even before the Prophet's (s) migration to Medina, and Imam 'Ali (a), due to the Prophet's (s) order, fought against some tribes of jinn alongside the wells and defeated them harshly. Sunni sources emphasizing on its falsehood, have considered this story as common tales.[12] "Its content and source has not proven to us", one of contemporary Shia marja's has said about that report.[13]

'Ali b. Abi Talib or 'Ali b. Dinar[edit | edit source]

One of the contemporary Sunni scholars in Egypt, not referring to any source, has attributed Abar 'Ali to 'Ali b. Dinar, the sultan of Darfur, south of Sudan]; he has rejected the verity of its attribution to 'Ali b. Abi Talib (a). in his view, 'Ali b. Dinar rebuilt the water wells of Dhu l-Hulayfa during his hajj travel in 1898/1315 AH, since then the area was named Abar 'Ali after him,[14] but since Abar 'Ali was mentioned in the sources which were written before the hajj travel of 'Ali b. Dinar, this view is not accepted.

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. al-'Ayn, Vol.8, P.290; Lisan al-'arab, Vol.4, P.37; Taj al-'arus, Vol.6, P.43, "بأر".
  2. 'Umdat al-qari, Vol.25, P.62; al-Bahr al-ra'iq, Vol.2, P.555; Manasik-i hajj, Safi, P.27.
  3. See: al-Ma'alim al-athira, P.103; Mu'jam alfaz al-fiqh al-Ja'fari, P.198.
  4. Manasik-I hajj, Safi, P.57; Mu'jam alfaz al-fiqh al-Ja'fari, P.198; al-hajj wa l-'umra, P.175
  5. al-'Uhud al-Muhammadiyya, P.60; al-Durr al-mukhtar, Vol.2, P.522; Fatawi al-lujna, Vol.11, P.181 & 238.
  6. 'Umdat al-qari, Vol.17, P.225; Vol.25, P.62; Mawahib al-Jalil, Vol.4, P.41.
  7. Kalimat al-taqwa, Vol.3, P.230; A'mal al-haramayn, P.13; Manasik-I hajj, Safi, P.27.
  8. Mu'jam alfaz al-fiqh al-Ja'fari, P.198.
  9. Kalimat al-taqwa, Vol.3, P.230; A'mal al-haramayn, P.13; Manasik-I hajj, Safi, P.27.
  10. I'anat al-talibin, Vol.2, P.341.
  11. See: Manasik-I hajj, Abtahi, P.54-5; Chahardah nur-I pak, Vol.12, P.1671-2.
  12. See: al-Bahr al-ra'iq, Vol.2, P.555; al-Durr al-mukhtar, Vol.2, P.522-3, Kashf al-khafa', Vol.2, P.418.
  13. See: Sirat al-najat, Vol.2, P.451.
  14. See: http://www.yabdoo.com, http://www.ibtesama.com http://www.sohbanej.com, http://www.daralansar.com.

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