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Zayd ibn Ali

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The Oxford Dictionary of Islam What is This? Covers the religious, political, and social spheres of global Islam in the modern world

    Zayd ibn Ali

    (d. 740 )

    Grandson of Muhammad 's son Husayn , son of Ali Zayn al-Abidin . Shii sect of Zaydis believed he was the fifth imam. He rejected the notion of the Hidden Imam, pursuing instead a more activist revolutionary position against the Umayyad dynasty. Led a rebellion against them in 740 . First descendant of Husayn to rebel openly against the Umayyads. His leadership resulted in his followers declaring that any descendant of Fatimah and Ali could claim the imamate; the determining factor was not birth order but a public assertion of the imamate. He died violently in rebellion. Today he serves as a symbol for Shiis, encouraging activism, rather than passive acceptance, in response to suffering, injustice, and oppression.

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