Document Type : Original Article
From the early days of Islam, the most important issue among Muslims
is the leadership and Imamate of the Islamic nation. Some hold the divine
appointment of Imam and its conveyance by the Prophet Muhammad
(pbuh) while some others consider Imamate and people’s consultation
and selection entangled and claim that the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)
passed away and introduced nobody as his successor!
For the claim of immediate vicegerency by the Prophet Muhammad
(pbuh), claimers for the appointment of Imam and its conveyance by
the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) have relied on the traditions narrated
from the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) of which the most important is a
narration known as the Guardianship Tradition.
In this article, we will investigate the typology of content, chain and
diversity of procession of this tradition and its similar traditions.
Guardianship Tradition and its similar traditions have 40 chains from
the companions of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and the Household
(A.S.). Among the chain, 13 of them are common between the Shia and
Sunni, 6 chains belong to the Sunni sources and 21 chains to the Shia
sources- which some of them are narrated by the companions of the
Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and some others by the companions of the
Household (A.S.). Totally, all these traditions have nine types of content
and twelve types of procession which four types of its procession is
common between Shia and Sunni and eight types belong to the Shia and
three independent uniform traditions