Home > The followers of Imam Ali (a.s) > The Four Books (canonical works) >


Book title: Al-Istibsar fi ma ikhtalafa min al-akhbar (seeking insight among different traditions).

Compiler: Shaykh Tousi, Abu Ja`far Muhammad ibn Hasan (385/995-460/1068)

Birth: He was born in 385/995 in Khurasan, Iran

Short history: Shaykh Tousi immigrated to Baghdad in 408/1017 and studied with Shaykh Mufid and Sayyid al-Murtaza. After the sedition that was excited in Baghdad he traveled to Najaf and established the Islamic seminary of Najaf. After the demise of Sayyid al-Murtaza the leadership of the Shiites was transferred to him. Al-Qa'im bi amrallah, then Abbasid caliph presented him the chair of teaching and delivering lectures in theology in Baghdad after he (the caliph) coordinated with the Buyyad.

Demise: Shaykh Tousi departed this life in 460/1068 and was buried in

Najaf, Iraq.

Book subject: A collection of traditions narrated from the household (Ahl

al-Bayt) of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w) on different Islamic jurisprudential discussions

Features: It is one of the 4 major books (al-Kutub al-arba`ah) for the Shiites that the Islamic jurists refer to while inferring the religious injunctions.


Manuscripts: 1. A manuscript inscribed in 1090/1679, available at Imam Amir al-mu'minin Library

2. A manuscript inscribed in 1078/1667, available at the library of Sayyid

Muhammad Baghdadi.

3. A manuscript that Ali Riza inscribed it in 1072/1661 to send it to an Indian figure.