The Martyrdom of Imam Baqir (a.s)
A Brief History of the Fourteen Infallibles (Ansariyan Publications) | Source: Imam Mahdi Association of Marjaeya []

The Holy Imam Muhammad al-Baqir is the Fifth Apostolic Imam. His epithet was Abu Ja'far and he was popularly titled "al-Baqir". His mother was the daughter of Imam Hasan. Thus, he was the only Imam who was connected with Hadrat Fatimatu'z-Zahra', both from his paternal and maternal sides.

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir was brought up in the holy lap of his grandfather Imam Husayn, for three years. For thirty-four years he was under the gracious patronage of his father, 'Ali Zaynu'l-'Abidin.

The Holy Imam was present in Karbala' at the time of the gruesome tragedy of the wholesale massacre of his grandfather Imam Husayn and his companions. He also suffered with his father and the ladies of the House of the Prophet (Ahlu'l-bayt) the heartless captivity and imprisonment at the hands of the devilish forces at the command of Yazid ibn Mu'awiyah. After the tragedy of Karbala', the Imam passed his time peacefully in Medina praying to Allah and guiding the people to the right path.

The downfall of the Umayyads had begun since Yazid, the son of Mu'awiyah, had slaughtered Imam Husayn. Yazid himself had completely realized the evil consequences of his deeds even during the short period of his rule. His son Mu'awiyah, the second, refused to accept the caliphate saying I cannot favour such a throne which has been erected on the basis of oppression and tyranny.

The Holy Imam managed to collect the teachings and reforms of the Holy Prophet and his Ahlu'l-bayt in the form of books. His pupils compiled books on different branches of science and arts under his instructions and guidance.

In the excellence of his personal purity and godly traits, the Holy Imam Muhammad al-Baqir was a model of the Holy Prophet and his great grandfather, 'Ali ibn Abi Talib. His admonitions created a spiritual sensation among the Muslims in general. He was not only hospitable even to his worst enemies but also used to continually exhort them to the right path. He urged people to earn their livelihood by their own hard work.

The Holy Imam gave much importance to convening majalis (meetings) in commemoration of the martyrdom of Imam Husayn. Kumayl ibn Zayd al-Asadi, one of the most famous and highly talented poets of that time, used to recite the elegy of Imam Husayn in those majalis. Such type of majalis were also greatly encouraged by Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq and Imam 'Ali ar-Rida, the Sixth and the Eighth Imams.

Imam Muhammad al-Baqir continued his preaching peacefully till 114 AH. On the 7th Dhi'l-hajjah when he was fifty-seven years old, Hisham ibn 'Abdil-Malik ibn Marwan, the then ruler, got him martyred through poison. The funeral prayers for this Holy lmam were conducted by his son Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq, the Six Imam, and his body was laid to rest in Jannatu 'l-Baqi' in Medina.