The two major Comprehensive Ziyarat texts deriving from the Imams.

 

An image of a recent printing of the commentary al-Aḥsā’ī  on the Shī`ī   Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra and the opening lines of the identically titled work of the Bāb (from Tehran: Majlis Lib, ms.).

The two twelver Shi`i Comprehensive al-Ziyāra al-jāmi'a al-saghira/al-kabira texts.

Select Abbreviations for writings referred to below:

  • ZJS = al-Ziyārat al-jāmi`a al-saghīra = `The Shi`i Lesser Comprehensive Visitation Tablet '
  • ZJK = al-Ziyārat al-jāmi`a al-kabīra =  `The Shi`i Greater Comprehnsive Visitation Tablet'

The Texts and Translations of the two major Comprehensive Ziyarat texts deriving from the Imams.

The al-Ziyāra al-jāmi`a al-saghīra of the 8th Imam `Ali al-Rida' (b. Medina, 148/766 - d. Tus, 203/819).

 

[1]

The Imami Shī`ī al-Ziyārat al-jāmi`a al-saghīra  (ZJS).

 The  shorter or lesser comprehensive Ziyārat text recited at the shrines of the holy family or twelver imams exists within Kulaynī’s supplement to his al-Uṣūl min al-Kāfī  known as al-Furū` min al-kāfī (see  below) as well as within numerous other Ziyāra sources such as the early Kāmil al-ziyārāt (The Perfection of the Ziyāras) of Ibn Qulūya al-Qummī, (d.367/977),  the Man lā yaḥḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ and `Uyūn akhbār al-Riḍā’ of Ibn Bābuwayh (d. 381/991) and al-Ṭūsī’s Tahdbīb al-aḥkām. In addition this text can be found in many more recent Shī`ī devotional compilations auch as `Abbās al-Qummī’s well-known Mafātīḥ al-jinān (for some details see bib. below). The ZJS is usually held to have been transmitted by the the 8th Imam `Alī al-Riḍā’ (see for details Ibn Qulūya al-Qummī, Kāmil al-Ziyāra, p. 523, fn.1 and `Abbās al-Qummī, Mafatīḥ, p. 619). Its chain of transmission is set forth, for example, in the following manner in the Tahdbīb al-aḥkam  of al-Tūsī  : "Muhammad ibn Ya`qub [transmitted] from Muhammad ibn Yahya from Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Yahya from Harun ibn Muslim from `Ali ibn Hassan who said, "[Imam] al-Rida' was asked about approaching the shrine (qabr) of Abi al-Hasan. He therefore replied, "You should perform blessings of peace in the mosques around about and do likewise in all surrounding regions" ( al-Tūsī, Tahdbīb al-aḥkam, (1 vol. ed.) Bk. VI. Sect. 47 No.1, pp.1073-4)..  

Among other sources the Man lā yaḥḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ of Ibn Bābuwayh similarly records a few preliminaries prior to the recitation of the ZJS. In this work its author records that asked about visitation to the shrine of the 7th Imam Musa al-Kazim,  the eighth Imam `Ali al-Rida'  suggested that the devotee should utter blessings of the prayer now known as the ZJS in the mosques surrounding his shrine. 

Translation of the al-Ziyārat al-jāmi`a al-saghīra  (ZJS).

Arabic text as cited  al-Tūsī, Tahdbīb al-aḥkam,p.1074

The Imami Shī`ī ZJS is a fairly brief Arabic text. It commences with eleven imamological beatitudes or taslīm sentences (`May peace be upon ,,,’) and a few others of an ethical nature completed by with more sentences of blessing upon Muhammad and his family including the Imams, It may be translated from Tahdbīb al-aḥkam,p.1074  as follows :

  • Peace be upon the legatees (awliyā’) of God and His purified ones (aṣfiyā’)!
  • Peace be upon the trustees (amnā’) of God and His beloved ones (aḥibbā’)!
  • Peace be upon the helpers (anṣār) of God and His leaders (khulafā’)!
  • Peace be upon the axis (maḥall) of the gnosis of God (ma`rifat Allāh)!
  • Peace be upon the the abodes of the Dhikr Allah (Remembrance of God)!
  • Peace be upon the elucidators of the  command and the prohibition of God (muzhiri amr Allah wa nahyihi)!
  • Peace be upon the summonors unto God (du`at ila Allah)!
  • Peace be upon  such as are established regarding the good pleasure of God (mardat Allah)!
  • Peace be upon such as are sincerely inclined respecting obedience yowards God.
  • Peace be upon such as are guides (al-adilla') towards God!
  • Peace be upon those whose loyalty is expressive of the Loyalty of God [Himself] (wala Allah) and  whose enemies are indeed the enemies of God!

Whosoever knoweth them hath indeed known God! And whomsoever is ignorant of them is indeed ignorant of God! And whomsoever seeketh refuge with them hath surely sought refuge in God! And whomsoever forsaketh them forsaketh God Himself, Exalted and Glorified be He.

And I bear witness that I am peacefully disposed (silm) towards whomsoever is peacefully disposed towards Thee and at war (harb) with whomsoever wageth war against Thee. A believer am I in thy secret (sirr) and thy public persona (`alaniyya). Graciously in this respect to I  entrust everything to Thee. May God curse the enemies of the [Shi`i] family of Muhammad be they of the jinn or humankind for I free myself from them for the sake of Go. And may the peace of God be upon Muhammad and his [Shi`i] family". (Trans. Lambden from al-Tūsī, Tahdbīb al-aḥkam, (1 vol. ed.) Bk. VI. Sect. 47 No.1, pp.1074.cf..Ibn Bābuwayh, Man lā yaḥḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ, no. 3214 p.419).

The devotional uttering of the ZJS should suffice for or supplement all twelver Ziyāra devotionals and include prayers for Muhammad or his family (āl), and the Imams, etc., who should each, when appropriate, be specifically named.

Select Printed texts of the al-Ziyārat al-jāmi`a al-saghīra  (ZJS):

`Alī al-Riḍā’, Abū al-Ḥasan `Alī ibn Mūsā, the eighth Imam (d. 203/818)

  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-saghīra, in al-Kulaynī, in al-Uṣūl min al-kāfī, vol. IV (= al- Furū` min al-kāfī), p. 579.
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-saghīra, in Ibn-Qulūya Kāmil al-ziyārāt, (ed. 1417/1996), pp. 522-3.
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-saghīra, in Ibn Bābawayh, Man lā yaḥḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ (1 vol. ed.), Kitāb al-ziyārāt, no. 3214, p. 419.
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-saghīra, in Ibn Bābawayh, `Uyūn akhbār al-Riḍā’, (2 vol. ed.)  Beirut: Mu`assat al-A`lamī li’l-Maṭbū`āt, 1404/1983, Vol. 1 p. 304.
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-saghīra in al-Tūsī, Tahdbīb al-aḥkam, (1 vol. ed.) Bk. VI. Sect. 47 No.1, pp.1073-4.
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-saghīra in al-Qummī, Mafatīḥ al-jinān [1427/2006], p.719.

See below on the ZJK  for details of the printed texts mentioned in these sources.

The al-Ziyāra al-jāmi`a al-kabīra of the 10th Imam `Ali ibn Muhammad al-Naqi,  al-Hadi (b. Medina, 214/829 -  d. Samarra, 254/868).

 

[2]

The Imami Shī`ī al-Ziyārat al-jāmi`a al-kabīra (ZJK).

I

[1]

Peace be upon you, 

O people of the House of the Prophet!

(ahl bayt al-nubuwwa)

[2] You [Imams+] are embodiments of the sent message (mawḍi` al-risālat), [3] loci for the circumambulatory visitation of the angels (mukhtalaf al-malā'ikat), [4] and the locale for the realization of divine revelation (mahbiṭ al- waḥy) [5] You are lodestones of the Divine Mercy (ma`din al-raḥmat), [6] treasuries of knowledge (khazā'in al-`ilm) [7] and uttermost apexes of fortitude (muntahā al-ḥilm). [8] You are the foundational bases of generosity (uṣūl al-karam), [9] leaders of the peoples [nations, religious comunities] (qādat al-umam), [10] and saintly patrons of the divine Bounty (awliyā' al-na`im). [11] You are the foundational bases of pious virtue (`anāsir al-abrār), [12] buttresses of the excellences [excellent ones] (da`ā'im al-akhyar)  [13] and directors of the servants [of God] (sāsat al-`ibād). [14] You are pillars of the nations (arkān al-bilād), [15] gates to secure faith (abwāb al-aymān) [16] and trustees of the All-Merciful (umanā' al-rahman). [17] You are the progeny of the prophets (sulālat al-nabiyyin), [18] the quintessence of the sent Messengers (safwat al-mursalin) [19] and kinfolk [of the household] of the excellent one of the Lord of all the worlds (`itrat khayrat al-rabb al-`ālamin = Muhammad). [20] May the Mercy of God (rahmat Allah) and His Blessings be upon thee.(Opening paragraph of the ZJK trans. Lambden). For the full Lambden translation see

The ZJK was transmitted by Abū Jaʿfar Muḥammad ibn Abū al-Ḥasan ʿAlī ibn Ḥusayn ibn Mūsā al-Qummī, well-known as Ibn Bābuwayh or Shaykh al-Ṣadūq (“the Righteous Shaykh”) (d. 381/9991-2). This Ziyāra text is found in his major al-Fiqh works, Man lā yahḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ  ("For whomsoever is without access to a [Shi`i] lawyer”) and the Tahdhīb al-aḥkām  (“The Rectification of Judgments”) as well as his `Uyūn akhbār al-Riḍā’  (“Glimpses into the Traditions of al-Riḍā’”) a compilation of Shī`ī materials at times associated with the eighth Imam,`Alī al-Riḍā’ (d. 203/818), see `Uyūn akhbār al-Riḍā’ vol. 1 pp. 305-310 and on this work refer GAL I: 200; Tehrānī, Dhari'a XV, 375, no. 2367; al-Amīn, `Ayān al-shi`a, II:16). The Arabic text of the Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra via the tenth Imam `Alī al-Hādī.  It can also be found in numerous later Shī`ī devotional compilations such as the well-known Mafātīḥ al-jinān of Ḥajjī Shaykh `Abbās Qummī (for details see bib. below). Some Islamic and western scholars have doubted the antiquity of this longer Ziyāra text though strongly imamological Shī`ī thinkers such as al-Aḥsā’ī, argue vehemently for its veracity by a close examination of its chains of transmission and by giving weight to literary style and to allegedly supernatural, visionary, considerations. It is declared in al-Aḥsā’ī in his Sharḥ al-ziyāra to be “the most perfect (akmal) of Ziyāras as well as their most beautiful (aḥsan) (see the opening pages of the Sharḥ al-ziyāra… esp. vol.1 pp. 28-33).

There is little doubt that the above Ziyāra is most likely alluded to in KS6. It was of great magnitude for the Bāb as it was for his major predecessor Shaykḥ Aḥmad ibn Zayn al-Dīn al-Aḥsā’ī (d.1241/1826), who, in 1234/1815, wrote a lengthy commentary of almost 1,500 pages upon almost every phrase of this highly imamocentric devotional text (Kirmānī, Fihrist, 226). The ZJK was transmitted by Abū Jaʿfar Muḥammad ibn Abū al-Ḥasan ʿAlī ibn Ḥusayn ibn Mūsā al-Qummī, well-known as Ibn Bābuwayh or Shaykh al-Ṣadūq (“the Righteous Shaykh”) (d. 381/9991-2). This Ziyāra text is found in his major al-Fiqh works, Man lā yahḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ ("For whomsoever is without access to a lawyer”) and the Tahdhīb al-aḥkām  (“The Rectification of Judgments”) as well as his `Uyūn akhbār al-Riḍā’  (“Glimpses into the Traditions of al-Riḍā’”) a compilation of Shī`ī materials at times associated with the eighth Imam,`Alī al-Riḍā’ (d. 203/818). Certain of these sources record that a certain Mūsā Ibn `Abd-Allāh al-Nakhā`ī held that the tenth Imam, `Alī al-Hādī (d. Samarra, Iraq c. 254/868), known as al-Naqī (`the Pure One’), relayed the following conversation:

`Teach me O son of the Messenger of God [Muhammad](i.e. Imam `Alī al-Hādī) an utterance that is eloquent (bāligh an) and perfect (kāmil an) since I have to depart alone away from you’.

            After detailed preliminary ritual directives,[9] the opening paragraph of this major comprehensive Shī`ī Ziyāra text opens as follows: 

Peace be upon you, O people of the House of the Prophet [Muhammad]! locus of the sent messengers (mawḍi` al-risālat), visiting domain of the angels (mukhtalaf al-malā'ikat), scene of the descent  of divine revelation (mahbiṭ al-waḥy), mine of divine mercy (ma`din al-raḥmat), treasury of knowledge (khazā'in al-`ilm), uttermost apex of fortitude (muntahā al-ḥilm) and of the foundational bases of nobility (uṣūl al-karīm) (From al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra, trans. Lambden as cited in al-Ṭūsī  - for a complete translation of this longer Ziyara refer to the Shaykhi page on this website.

The Arabic Ziyārat jami`a al-kabīra has been printed many times, both independently and in numerous Shī`ī devotional compendia.

Select Printed texts

The Arabic text of the  Ziyārat jami`a al-kabīra has been printed many times, both independently and in numerous Shī`ī devotional compendia. Note the following examples,

`Alī al-Hādī, Abū al-Ḥasan `Alī ibn Muhammad, the tenth Imam (d. 254/ 868).

  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra in Ibn Bābawayh, Man lā yaḥḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ (1 vol. ed), Kitāb al-ziyārāt, no. 3215, pp. 419-422.
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra in Ibn Bābawayh, `Uyūn akhbār al-Riḍā’, vol. 1 pp. 305-310, 2 vol.ed.  Beirut: Mu`assat al-A`lamī li’l-Maṭbū`āt, 1404/1983,
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra  in al-Tūsī, Tahdbīb al-aḥkam, Bk. VI. Sect. 46 No.1, pp.1070-1073
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra in Kaf`amī, al-Balad al-amīn (1418/1997), pp. 418-424.
  • al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra in al-Qummī, Mafātīḥ al-jinān (1427/2006), pp. 620-628.

Ibn Bābuwayh, Muhammad ibn `Alī ibn al-Ḥusayn al-Qummī (d. Rayy, 381/991-2).

  • Man lā yaḥḍuru-hu al-faqīḥ (1 vol. ed). Beirut: Mu`assat al-A`lā lil-Maṭbū`āt [= Allami Library] 1426/2005.
  • `Uyūn akhbār al-Riḍā’, 2 vol.ed.  Beirut: Mu`assat al-A`lamī li’l-Maṭbū`āt, 1404/1983.

al-Ṭūsī, Muhammad ibn al-Ḥasan Khwājah Naṣīr al-Dīn ( d. Baghdad 672/1274).

  • Tahdhīb al-aḥkām (one vol. ed) Beirut: Mu`assat al-A`lā lil-Maṭbū`āt [= Allami Library] 1426/2005. Esp.  Pt. VI = Kitab al-Mazār, Sect., XVI = Faṣl al-Ziyāra.

al-Kaf`amī, [al-`Āmilī], Shaykh Taqī al-Dīn ( d. 900/1494-5).

  • Balad al-amīn wa’l-dir` al-ḥaṣīn. Beirut: Mu`assasat al-A`lamī, 1418/1997.

al-Qummī, Hajjī Shaykh `Abbās (d. 1319/1901).

  • Mafātīḥ al-Jinān. Beirut: Mu`assat al-a`lamī li’l-maṭbū`āt, 1427/2006.

On the work al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra’ see GAL I: 200; Tehrānī, Dhari'a XV, 375, no. 2367; al-Amīn, `Ayān al-shi`a, II:16). The Arabic text of the Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra via the tenth Imam `Alī al-Hādī and others, can also be found in numerous later Shī`ī devotional compilations such as the well-known Mafātīḥ al-jinān of Ḥajjī Shaykh `Abbās Qumī. Some Islamic and western scholars doubt the antiquity of this longer Ziyāra text though strongly imamological Shī`ī thinkers such as al-Aḥsā’ī, argue vehemently for its veracity by a close examination of its chains of transmission, also giving weight to other literary and supernatural, visionary, considerations. It is declared in al-Aḥsā’ī’s Sharḥ al-ziyāra to be “the most perfect (akmal) of Ziyāras as well as their most beautiful (aḥsan) (see the opening pages of the Sharḥ al-ziyāra… esp. vol.1 pp. 28-33). In the Kirmān: Maṭba'at al-Sa'ādat, 1355-6 Sh./1976-7 4 vol. edition of the Commentary of al-Ahsa'i, there are a total of 1476 pages. This work of al-Aḥsā’ī has been printed at least ten times between the 1850s (1st lithograph ed. 1267/1851?) and the several recent, 21st century printings in Beirut and elsewhere. Many regard the Sharh al-Ziyāra of al-Ahsa'i as his most omportant work.

Shi`i-Shaykhi Commentaries upon the al-Ziyārat al-jāmi'a al-kabīra

For some details see: `Twelver Shi`i commentaries on the al-Ziyarat al-Jami`a al-kabira'.

Shaykh Ahmad al-Ahsa'i - Sharh al-Ziyāra al-jāmi`a al-kabīra