The issue of Fadak is a favorite topic for the Shia, and the story (in collusion with spiteful rhetoric) is one that the Shia children grow up on. The Shia propagandists feel no qualms in rabble-rousing and exploiting Fadak by reviving Fitnah and disagreements that died hundreds of years ago. On the other hand, the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah does not focus on the story of Fadak, namely to prevent senseless Fitnah and out of respect for Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) and Fatima (رضّى الله عنها), two of the great personalities of Islam.
Because of the fact that the issue of Fadak is not a center of focus in Sunni circles, many Sunni youth do not have the details about this event and most haven’t even heard of it. Meanwhile, the Shia youth are trained with propaganda points to assault the unknowing Sunnis with. This imbalance of knowledge leads to a quick “victory” for the Shia propagandists.
The reality, however, is that the Shia version of Fadak is completely biased, contrary to the facts, and yet another typical Taqiyyah-oriented deception and manipulation of history designed to malign Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه). We find that a fair analysis of Fadak not only absolves Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) of all wrong doing, but it also exposes the falsity of the Shia paradigm.
Fadak was the name of a property that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) personally owned. Upon the Prophet’s death (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم), Fatima (رضّى الله عنها) expected to inherit Fadak, but Caliph Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) refused to give it to her and he instead donated it to the state as charity. Based on this event, the Shia villify Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) for “stealing” land from the daughter of the Prophet.
The reason Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) did not–and Islamically could not–give Fadak to Fatima (رضّى الله عنها) was because the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) had declared that the Prophets do not leave behind inheritance. Prophets are awarded special financial privelages in order to aid them in their mission to spread Islam; Prophet Muhammad (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) got a portion of the Khums on the very basis that he was a Prophet. It is thus not an absurd stipulation that their inheritance too has a special set of rules distinct from non-prophets. Both Sunni and Shia Hadith confirm that the property of Prophets is left behind as charity and not to be awarded as inheritance.
Let us now examine Sunni Hadith on the topic of Prophets and inheritance. Prophet Muhammad (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) said:
“We do not leave inheritance. What we leave behind is charity.” (Sahih Muslim, Kitab al-Jihad was-Siyar, no. 49)
“We, the Prophets, do not leave heirs.” (Musnad Ahmad, vol. 2 p. 462)
This is confirmed in Shia Hadith as well. Let us examine Shia Hadith in Al-Kafi, the most reliable of the four Shia books of Hadith, on the same matter:
“The Prophets did not leave dinars and dirhams as inheritance, but they left knowledge.” (al-Kafi, vol. 1 p. 42)
This Shia Hadith in Al-Kafi has two separate narrations, and is considered Sahih by the Shia. The authenticity is confirmed by Ayatollah Khomeini, who used this Hadith to prove his claim of Wilayah al-Faqih. Khomeini said about the Hadith:
“The narrators of this tradition are all reliable and trustworthy. The father of ‘Ali ibn Ibrahim [namely Ibrahim ibn Hashim] is not only reliable, [but in fact] he is one of the most reliable and trustworthy narrators.”
(source: Khomeini, al-Hukumat al-Islamiyyah, p. 133, published by Markaz Baqiyyat Allah al-A’zam, Beirut)
So we wonder why this Hadith is reliable enough to prove Wilayah al-Faqih, but suddenly it is not used by the Shia to defend Abu Bakr’s (رضّى الله عنه) position?
Do we not then see that the statement made by Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) about Prophets not giving inheritance is the same statement that was made by Imam Sadiq (رضّى الله عنه) whom the Shia consider to be infallible? Allamah Al-Majlisi declared that the Hadith “do[es] not fall short of being Sahih.” And Ayatollah Khomeini considered it to be so Sahih that he used it to prove his Wilayah al-Faqih. If Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) is to be considered a liar for quoting this Hadith, then would the Shia also accept that Imam Sadiq (رضّى الله عنه), Allamah Majlisi, and Ayatollah Khomeini are also liars by same logic?
This Shia Hadith is referenced on Al-Shia.com, one of the most reliable of the Shia websites:
Hadith 57, Chapter 4, h 1
“The prophets did not leave any Dirham or Dinar (wealth) as their inheritance but they did leave knowledge as their inheritance.”
The Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) is recorded as saying:
“What we leave behind is to become alms.” (Hadith ash-Shafi)
The truth is that the Shia has no leg to stand upon since we point to their own Al-Kafi.