The Fifth Imam: Muhammad Ibn Ali Al-Baqir (Peace be on him)
Agnomen: Abu Ja'far.
Father's name: Ali Zaynu'l-`Abidin.
Mother's name: Fatimah bint al-Hasan, known as Umm `Abdillah.
Birth: In Medina, on Tuesday, 1st Rajab 57 AH.
Death: Died at the age of 57, in Medina on Monday, 7th
Dhul-hajjah 114 AH; poisoned by Hisham ibn `Abdil-Malik;
buried in Jannatu '1-Baqi', in Medina.
In the excellence of his personal purity and godly traits, the Holy Imam Muhammad al-Baqir was a model of the Holy Prophet and his great grandfather, `Ali ibn Abi Talib. His admonitions created a spiritual sensation among the Muslims in general. He was not only hospitable even to his worst enemies but also used to continually exhort them to the right path. He urged people to earn their livelihood by their own hard work.
The Holy Imam gave much importance to convening majalis (meetings) in commemoration of the martyrdom of Imam Husayn. Kumayl ibn Zayd al-Asadi, one of the most famous and highly talented poets of that time, used to recite the elegy of Imam Husayn in those majalis. Such type of majalis were also greatly encouraged by Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq and Imam `Ali ar-Rida, the Sixth and the Eighth Imams.
al-'Allamah at-Tabataba'i writes:
Imam Muhammad ibn Ali al-Baqir (the word `baqir' meaning he who cuts and dissects, a title given to him by the Prophet) was the son of the Fourth Imam and was born in 57/675. He was present at the event of Karbala' when he was four years old. After his father, through Divine Command and the decree of those who went before him, he became Imam. In the year 114/732 he died, according to some Shiite traditions, he was poisoned by Ibrahim ibn al-Walid ibn `Abdillah, the nephew of
Hisham, the Umayyad caliph.
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al-Imam al-Baqir, peace be on him, said:
* The height of perfection is excellence in the understanding of the religion, endurance in hardships and administration of the affairs of life according to one's means, in the right measure.
* The scholar ('alim) who derives benefit from his knowledge is better than seventy thousand devotees ('abid ).
* One who disobeys Allah has no knowledge of Him.
A Brief History of The Fourteen Infallibles
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