This work concentrates on the role and achievements of one of the founders of early Shi'i thought. Through an analysis of these and other contemporary records the book brings out the contributions of Imam Mohammed al-Baqir to the development of Islamic thought, in diverse areas such as Qur'anic exegesis, the study of hadith, theology and law, as well as the seminal influence of his ideas on the articulation of Shi'i doctrines.
Arzina Lalani is an expert in early Shi'I studies and is currently Visiting Research Fellow at The Institute of Ismaili Studies, London. She has previously taught Hadith Literature at Cambridge University. Dr. Lalani received her PhD from the University of Edinburgh.
Part 1 The idea of the Imamate before al-Baqir: early disputes about the leadership of the community; Al-Husayn and Karbala; the aftermath of Karbala; the Kaysaniyya. Part 2 Aspects of al-Baqir's life and career; al-Baqir's "Laqab" and succession; al-Baqir's rivals; al-Baqir and Zayd; al-Baqir and the Ghulat; the controversy over the time of al-Baqir's death. Part 3 Al-Baqir's views on the Imamate: the Qur'anic basis of the Imamate; the Hadith basis of the Imamate; the theology of the Imamate. Part 4 Al-Baqir's views on some key theological issues: "iman" (faith); "taqiyya"; "qada'wa qadar"; "tawhid". Part 5 Al-Baqir in traditionist circles: non-Shi'i circles; transmitters of al-Baqir; the Shi'i circle; Shi'i associates of al-Baqir. Part 6 Al-Baqir's contribution to Shi'i jurisprudence: some legal problems common to the various Shi'i groups; "mash 'ala al-khuffayn"; "nabidh"; "al-Jahr bi Bismillah"; the "adhan" or the call to the ritual prayer; "qunut"; "salat al-Janaza"; epilogue.