Khalifa Abu Bakr - Ali's Oration on the Death of Abu Bakr

Ali's oration. When Ali came to know of the death of Abu Bakr, he rushed to his house, and standing outside the house wherein lay the dead body of Abu Bakr, delivered an oration, which is a masterpiece of oratory, and is a beautiful summing up of the character and personality of Abu Bakr.

Master of many virtues. Ali said: "Mercy of God on you, O Abu Bakr. You were an affectionate companion and friend of the Prophet of Allah, a source of joy to him, and one who knew his secrets and enjoyed the privilege of being consulted by him. You were the first person to embrace Islam: you had the purest faith, and your belief in Islam was unshakable. Of all, you feared Allah most, and you were the source of the greatest advantage to His faith. You had been with the Prophet more than any one else, and your love for Islam was superior to others. A blessing to the companions you were the best of associates. Master of many virtues, excelling others in accomplishments and superior to all in position, you resembled the Holy Prophet more than any other person in the uprightness of character and conduct and in kindness and excellence. Your rank was noble, your position sublime, and you enjoyed the greatest confidence of the Prophet. May God reward you with goodness on behalf of Islam and the Prophet."

As-Siddiq. Ali added: "For the Prophet of Allah you were like his very sight and hearing. You corroborated the truth of his message at a time when everybody belied him, and so you were called As-Siddiq (the veracious) by Allah in His revelations. He says, "The one who came with the Truth, and the one who corroborated the Truth. The one who came with the Truth was Muhammad (peace be on him) and one who corroborated the Truth was Abu Bakr. You supported him when others had deserted him, and you remained firm in helping him in misfortunes when others had withdrawn their support. In the days of hardship you were his best companion. You were "the second of the two", and his companion in the Cave. You were the person on whom God conferred tranquillity of mind. You were the only companion of the Prophet in his migration to Madina, and you were his Caliph among his followers and in the religion of Allah. You discharged the functions of the Khilafat in a most excellent manner at a moment when people had taken to apostasy, and you exhibited such firmness in enforcing the commands of Allah as had never been exhibited by the Khalifa of any other Prophet."

Firmness of Abu Bakr. Talking about the firmness of Abu Bakr, Ali said: "You rose to the occasion when your colleagues showed lassitude, and you became bold when they were weak. You retained your adherence to the ways of the Prophet when others deviated from them. You were his true Caliph with no dispute or difference, although this gave offence to hypocrites and umbrage to the infidels, brought grief to those who were jealous and made the rebels wrathful. You stuck to the commands of Allah when others showed cowardice. You remained firm when others went astray. You passed through the Divine light while they remained behind. Afterwards they followed you and attained their goal."

Dignity of Abu Bakr. About the dignity of Abu Bakr, Ali said: "You had the lowest voice but the highest distinction. Your conversation was most exemplary and your reasoning most just; your silence was longest in duration, and your speech was most eloquent. Bravest among men, and well-informed about matters, your action was dignified."

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