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The Anti-Iran Period

The period of the Ummayyad rule (132-40 AH/660-750 AD) was an anti-Iranian one during which the Iranians were subjected to all kinds of suppression and degradation while efforts were made to eradicate the Iranian and the Persian cultures. During this period, Iranians had joined the anti-Ummayyad movements.

During this period the three important issues concerning the “faith and status of a person who commits major sins”, “the essence (zāt) and attributes (sefāt) of Allah” and “pre-destination and freewill” (jabr wa ekhtiyār) that had been raised since the times of the disciples of the Holy Prophet of Islam (s) became the popular subject-matter of debates. While on this topic, a few incidents that took place during the mentioned period are worth mentioning.

i) An anti-Ummayyad move referred to as the “Qadariyah” movement emerged under the leadership of “Ma’bad Johani” whose views regarding freewill or freedom of choice and the power of man were taken from an Iranian called “Sanbuyeh”. These views had prompted Ma’bad to oppose the tyrannical Ummayyad dominance and rule, during which struggle he was killed in the year 80 AH/699 AD. Ghaylān Dameshqi and Ja’d bin Derham, both of whom were eventually killed, as well as Yunos Asvāri followed in the footsteps of Ma’bad while the pro-Ummayyad theologians and narrators of ahādith (Prophetic sayings) ostracized the Qadariyah movement and issued verdicts decreeing that the Qadariyah should not be greeted and that no prayers should be offered over their dead ones and that no one should visit the ill from among them. Ma’bad’s theory served as a foundation for the views of the Mo’tazilites relating to the delegation of power.

ii) A pro-rulership power trend called the “Jabriyah” came into being and since it dissuaded people from making any move or taking any action (for their own freedom) it was supported by the Ummayyad’s despotic rule.

iii) Moreover, since according to some ahādith, the Qadariyah were considered to be the “Zoroastrians of the Islamic Ummah”, the term “qadar” came to find varying meanings like “jabr” and “tafwiz”. The advocates of each of these views accused the other group of believing in “qadar” (predestination) in order to exonerate themselves from being called the “Zoroastrians of the Islamic Ummah”. All these factors are indicative of the presence and influence of the Iranian culture during the anti-Iranian Ummayyad period.


* source: Dadbeh , Asghar " Iran Entry " The Great Islamic Encyclopedia . Ed. Kazem Musavi Bojnourdi.Tehran: The Center of Great Islamic Encyclopaedia , 1989-, V.10 , pp. 613


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