Friday, September 3, 2010

Zaydism: Summary

For new readers, these are the topics we have covered so far in this blog, listed under broad subject headings. Feel free to make comments on older posts, as they will be checked regularly.

1. Theology/ Aqeedah:
Zaidi Theology, the Mu’tazilah Doctrines, 19th June.
Zaidi Theology Allows Metaphorical Interpretations of Qur’an. 21st June.
Free Will and Divine Justice. 4th July.
The Role of the Prophets: a Zaidi Perspective. 15th July.
Zaidi Credal Statements, by Early Zaidi Scolar. 17th July.
Translation of Credal Statements by Yemen’s first Zaidi Imam. 24th July.
The Relationship between Mu’tazilism and Zaydism. 25th August.
Mu’tazilism saved from extinction by Zaidism. 29th August.

2. Leadership (Imamate) in Zaidism:
Abu Hanifah and Malik’s View on Hashemite leadership. 21st June.
Monarchy or Imamate? 22nd June.
Imamate: Zaidi reply to 12 Imamer. 11th July.
Selecting an Imam. 21st July.
Western Scholar supports Zaidi Imamate position. 10th August.

3. Zaydi versus Sunni:
A Sunni View of Zaidism. 1st August.
A Zaidi Reply to Ahlus sunnah. 3rd August.
Zaydi Activism versus Sunni Quietism. 22nd August.

4. Zaydi versus 12 Imamer:
12er Shi-ite Discussion on Zaidism. 9th July
Zaydi / 12 Imamer discussion Translated to English. 21st August.

5. Zaidi Jurisprudence/ Fiqh/ Hadith:
How to become a Zaidi. 24th June.
Zaidis judge ahadith by the Qur’an, not the other way around. 25th June.
How to Pray the Zaidi Way. 28th June
Ijtihad in Zaidism. 6th July
Zaidi Prayer Rituals, by early Zaidi Scholar. 21st July.
Ask a Zaidi, Ramadan (fasting) edition. 12th August
English Translation of Zaidi book on Fasting. 15th August.
Zaidism and Hadith Authenticity. 31st August.
What is the Zaidi Position on the Burqa? 19th June.

6. History of Zaidism:
Where does Zaidism get its name? 19th June
Zaidi Leaders. 21st June.
Is Zaidism Successful? 10th July.
The History of the Zaidi Revival in Sa’ada. 16th August.

7. Zaidi Politics:
Zaidism Under Threat in Yemen 19th June.
Democracy and Zaidism. 6th July
The War on Zaidism: Sa’ada update. 9th August
Should Zaidis Outside Yemen support the al Houthis? 15th August.
Zaidism and Women’s Liberation. 27th July
Should Religion be Imposed by a Zaidi Government? 12th July.

8. Introduction to Zaidism:
Zaidism .19th June.
Books of Zaidi Doctrine. 19th June
Zaidism: the Moderate and Progressive School of Thought. 19th June
Western Converts and Zaidism. 28th June.
Is Zaidism a Sect? 7th July.
Zaidis Outside the Arabian Peninsula. 7th July
Zaidism: the Key to Muslim Unity. 14th July.
Comments from Readers about Progressive Zaidism. 19th August.


  1. Mashallah.
    I find it strange that convert Muslim became Zaidi. We (Zaidi's) are very bad in promoting our Madh'hab in Arabic, let alone in other language.
    Allah Almusta3an.
    Ramadhan Kareem.

  2.  Zaydism: Translations into English of Zaydi Literature

    The following important Zaydi works have been translated into English and are now available online. They can all be found at
    The two sections about creed /aqeedah (Zaidi Creed Part 1 and Imam Haadi: Creed) are particularly important reading for anyone interested in the comparative study of Zaydism, Sunnism and 12 Imamerism.

    Zaidi Creed, Part 1, Credal Statements, Zaydism
    Zaidi Creed, Part 2: Hereafter and Prophethood
     Zaidi Creed Part 3: Imamate in Zaydism
     Zaidi book about Prayer (Salaat) and other Rituals
     Imam al Haadi: Creed & Imamate in Zaydism
     Book of Fasting, Zaydi Fasting
     Al Houthi’s answers to 12 Imamer (English): Zaydi vs 12er

  3. To Eagle, salaam and happy Ramadan! I think many converts come to Islam through a process of elimination; they find major flaws in Christianity and Atheism, and then consider Islam. But after a while, many converts find flaws in Sunnism and 12 Imamerism, and that is when they search for something even closer to the Truth. The only things holding them back from Zaydism are: 1. Lack of information in English. 2. Their Sunni or 12 Imamer friends and spouses, who put pressure on them to stay in their group.
    I went searching. I found out about Zaydism by going to the library at my local university and reading books about Islamic History. I didn't know any Zaidis and I still don't know any (except on the net). I would like to urge my fellow converts to keep on searching for the truth, and not be intimidated by Sunnis and 12ers who have not done their homework, instead, use their education and their reason to find the real Islam.

    1. MashAllah, this is so awesome to read, I'm a convert x10 years and Zaydi- i love it.
      Take care

  4. Mashallah. For me, this is amazing story.
    May Allah guide us all to the truth always.

  5. Sister Zaida
    From my experience the Zaydis who leave Yemen usually end up becoming either 12rs or Salafis. This is why I believe having contact of mujtahid imam for Zaydis is important. Nowadays we are seeing another trend. I think the Western society is always open to new ideas. I remember back in the day when I was strongly into Zaydism; I unable to find any material online. Then I went into a Yemeni forum, and tried to find answers. Unfortunately the Shafis and Salafis hated the Zaydis there. Most of them didn't want any discussions on the forum. Likewise the Zaydis hated the Shafis there too. I tried to bridge a common ground, but it never worked out in the end.
    I hope we can make a lot of progress in the next 10 years. Right now I am happy being Sunni, but this does mean my Sunnism will stop me from promoting Zaydi material. I believe from a Sunni point of views Zaydis should be respected as another school of thought which is equal to the Sunni school of thought.

  6. Brothers & Sisters
    Alssalamualikum, Ramadhan Mubarak, I'm asking Allah to accept our deeds in the end of this holy month. There are many reason that we couldn't find many sources about Zaydism such as books, online sites, etc... I think the main reasons could be: First, there is no support for this group and as you know most of the zaydi or yemini peopel are poor. Second, the position of the government that stand against this moderate group zaydism why? " as what you know the zaydism is the only group that prevent and stand against the unjustice and looking for the will free for all society members" so, the Governer of the Arabic Countries always try to destroy the real ideas of islam and want to play as they want and no one stop them except the Prophet Mohammad Family "zaydism" who stand to protect the people freedom, Sunnah and Islam rules from 1st and 2nd Centuries starting from " Ali bin Abi Talib, Al Husain bin Ali , then Zaid bin Ali, etc..." As, the Dr. Mustafa Mahmoud said "If any group of the people proud by their fighter, So we as Muslims have to be proud by the Zaidism Martyrs" I think the equation is being to be clear for everybody. We ask allah in these holy nights to bind the muslims together on the same word "No God but Allah & Mohammad is his Prophet" under this moderate islamic group.

  7. To us2010, welcome to the blog and thanks for this great comment. I think you have made a very good point here when you say that Zaydis stand up against injustice and encourage free will, (I think you mean here freedom of political thought), and it is for that reason that corrupt governments are opposed to them. It seems that the Zaydis these days find themselves in a similar position to Imam Zaid himself; i.e. the political situation during his lifetime, which has been summarized in the biography of Imam Zaid just posted at the zaydiyyah blog, sounds like a description of the situation faced by the Zaidis in Yemen today. After 1,000 years of Zaydi rule in Yemen, the Yemeni Zaydis seem to be back to square one. But alhamdulillah, they are struggling on with great courage.

  8. is there any zaydi that are sufi?or why are zaydi so against sufism?

  9. To Bigwali, this question was answered in a previous post like this:

    Imam Rassi Society said...

    Thanks, brother Aws!

    If I may add, if by "sufism" you mean purification of the soul, then Zaidism is not opposed to that! Indeed, many of our imams and scholars have attained what the sufis would call "wilayat" through spiritual excercises and gnosis (ma'rifa) of their Lord. As a result, some of them were able to do miracles!

    We refer to this as zuhd (indifference towards the dunya). Indeed, zuhd is a qualification for the imam. However, the ability to perform miracles is not a qualification. Miracles are just possible consequences of their spirituality.

    We have powerful duas and awrad from our imams and ulema that are sufficient for one on the spiritual path! We do need murshids or brotherhoods (turuq) to reach gnosis of our Lord!

    If by sufism you mean following a murshid or sheikh blindly, Zaidism is opposed to such! This is because, as brother Aws said, the greatest ni'ma is our minds and intellect. If we forsake our intellect to blindly follow some "sufi shaykh" or "pir sahib", we have no one to blame except ourselves if we are misguided!
    July 13, 2010 6:47 AM
    Imam Rassi Society said...
    Oh yeah, it must also be said that historically "Sufis" have played a role in the destabilization of the Zaidi imamate.

    For example, in the Yemeni consciousness, the Zaidis saw sufism as being equated with the Ottoman rule. So when the Ottomans dominated Yemen, the imams were a bit suspect of sufism.
    July 13, 2010 6:51 AM
    zaida said...
    Abdullah Hamidaddin said:
    On the question of Sufi tradition; the essence of the sufi tradition is not as thought to be connecting to God .. its essence is submission to a guru ... belief in his special powers, in particular powers to know you more than yourself .. considering inspiration as a valid source of knowledge, focusing on conscious-altering rhythmic rituals among others ... in that regard Zaydis didn’t have such practices.