The reasons of the downfall of Banu Umayyad’s Dynasty:
Banu Omayyad ruled over the Islamic world at least for a centaury. During this period, they fulfill their task of ruling with cruelty, tyranny, grandiosity and impact. Due to their outward strength and power no one can think of the downfall of Omayyad’s dynasty. In fact, in the way Banu Umayyad’s dynasty came into being, the majority of people disliked and hated them. Although this dynasty doomed to downfall after a centaury but the factors behind its downfall was present at the time of its beginning and politics of the alter caliphs and their corruption increased it. Its roots became hollow so it ended up forever. There were many reasons of the downfall of Umayyads but the most important are the following.
1. One Man Leadership:
The main cause of the downfall of the Umayyads dynasty was the one man leadership instead of Islamic caliphate. Though Muawiya was the founder of this dynasty, he was the companion of the prophet (pbuh) and an observer of the era of Prophet (pbuh) that’s why in spite of the innovator of monarchial absolutism he tried to establish Islamic traditions and Sharia rulings but his successors could not continue the tradition set by him. So after Muawiya Umayyads government became totally a monarch and slowly and gradually it filled with all the vices of monarchial system. Bait al Mall became the private property and its generated income was expended on the caliphs instead of the welfare and wellbeing of the nation. Including all these vices when cruelty and tyranny cross all its limits, the hatred increased in the nation against them and they became offensive. Due to this opposition Umayyad’s dynasty became ended. Umer bin Abdul-Aziz tried to reform and renew the condition in his period but soon after him the same Un Islamic and non Shari system prevailed. Monarchial system could not create any place in the hearts of the people.
2. Ineligible Rulers:
Banu Umayyad’s government system was Monarchial. The stability of this type of government is based on the main political system. People like Amir Muawiya, Abdul Malik, waleed I and Hisham was very wise, thoughtful and brave leaders and due to their political vision their government was strong and stable and they stretched the boundaries of their reign Turkistan and Andalusia. Contrary to it their successors like Waleed II, Yazid II, and Yazid III, were not only ineligible but also without any political vision. They remained busy all the time in marry making, living luxurious life, enjoying music and dance. This life style also attracts their governors and they follow the trend. By this the political system was destroyed and their war disorder and anarchy in the state which resulted in the downfall of the Umayyads.
3. Absence of Definite Law of Succession:
In the Umayyads era, although the government was confined to one family but the proper rules and regulations of succession were absent in them. In Marwan I’s reign people nominated two two successors at a time. In result circumstances became worst then ever and the first nominee conspired against the second and tries to snatch all the powers from him. It causes great anarchy in the royal family which also affects the whole government system. Governors also divided in groups. Every new ruler tries to take revenge from his enemies. Like Salman, who after sitting on the throne of authority take revenge from the conquerors of his predecessor’s time, named Waleed because they were against him. It not only negatively effects the government but also to Arab nation bears a lot of turmoil.
4. The disgrace of the political members:
Governors, Army leaders and parliament members whose political vision and abilities was responsible for the prosperity, progress and establishment of Umayyads were disgraced and maltreated by Umayyad rulers. Salman disgrace Musa Bin Nusayr who was a great conqueror. These types of acts created nihilism in the governors and the spirit of loyalty and faithfulness for the government was ended in them.
5. Moral and Ethical Degradation:
It is natural that when a nation indulge in ostentatious and pretentious living and became morally corrupt they cannot rule and govern. In the ups and downs of nations this aspect is very significant. Nations with high moral conduct became prosperous and booming nations. But when these became morally corrupted, addicted to luxurious life then these nations decreed to downfall and destruction and destined to be wiped out from the ruling class. Monarchist driven by the possessions of the world neglect all the moral values. Beside some monarchist other were fond of music, drinking, and boastful life. Yazid II’s Un Islamic attitude cross all the limits of tolerance. So this moral devaluation became the reason of the downfall of Umayyad’s dynasty. Prosperity and flow of wealth make them more prone to laziness, easiness and luxurious life. As a result people deviated from these rulers and anti government agents took advantage of the circumstances and put it to end.
6. Racial Discrimination:
Holy Prophet (pbuh) demolishes all the racial and nationalistic discriminations. Four rightly guided caliphs also follow the traditions of Prophet (pbuh) and they never discriminated between Arabs and non Arabs. Every Muslim was elected and takes charge of occupation in government due to his abilities and wisdom irrespective of his color, race, and nationality. But when monarchial absolutism came they started discrimination in Arabs and Non Arabs. In not only political posts but they also discriminate in the distribution of war booty (Mal e Ghanimat) although in their conquests both Arabs and non Arabs participated. Abdul Malik even removed the non Arabs from the main positions in government. Hujaj bin Yusuf take kharaj even from the new Muslims to increase the revenue income. It results negatively and poor new Muslims became poorest. They became against the Umayyads. It was not tolerable for them at all that Umayyad rulers usurp their rights which Islam has given to them. They also raise the issues of Arabis and Shamis as they came into power because of people of Sham so they give preference to them in every matter. Shami soldiers got more salary then Arab soldiers. This was the main reason of Ibn Ashghas’s revolt. This racial discrimination’s result was that when Abu Muslim Kharasani propagated against Umayyad’s cruelty and tyranny new Muslim and non Arabs became their supporters and became the reason of the downfall of this dynasty.
7. Tribal Prejudice:
The most important reason of Umayyad’s dynasty was the prejudice between Mazri and Yamane tribes and their internal wars. They were enemies of each other from the Jahiliya period but Islam united them. When Islamic ideologies became weak their prejudice rises again. Amir Muawiya suppressed it beautifully and after him some strong leaders don’t let them cross the limits. But in the end of Umayyad’s era, situation became worst and leaders played off one against the other for personal motives. It increases level of prejudice and this enmity and internal wars affected Arabs badly and their political power decreases. Umayyad’s dynasty was dependent on Arabs power and strength and their decline became the reason of Umayyad’s downfall.
One of the reasons of downfall of Umayyads was Khawarij. This group was in favor of democratic government and raises the slogans of Islamic equality in the society. They were against Banu Umayyads and monarchial absolutism. They consider Umayyads dynasty un Islamic and usurped one. They always stand against Umayyads rule. Thousands of Khawarij killed but they don’t accept Umayyad’s obedience. They could not demolish Umayyad’s dynasty but the diverted Umayyads power to themselves which can be utilized on other enemies.
9. Religious Scholars:
Religious scholars were also against the Banu Umayyads after observing their acts of usurpation, materialistic love, and lustful life. This group was not only consists of religious scholars but also the off springs of companions and Alims. They desired the revival of rightly guided caliphate and Islamic society. They were ready to help and support every effort, struggle and campaign to end the non Shari government system of Umayyads and revival of Islamic government system. In these factors Abdullah Ibn Zubair was succeeded a lot. In the revolt of Ibn Ashas they were also in front line. For few times they directly participated in wars but through the preaching of Islamic teachings they strike at the root of this kingship and many times they had to face hardships. Banu Umayyads try to force Imam Abu Hanifa for government job but when he denied he had to bear lashes as a result but it doesn’t effect their determination and steadfastness. At last their efforts bore fruits and they weaken the roots of Umayyad’s dynasty.
10. Shian Ali:
Shian Ali considered caliphate the due right of Ahl al Bait only. They consider Umayyads as usurpers and that’s the reason they never accepted Umayyads rule by heart. Although Hazrat Hassan (RA) disclaimed the caliphate and the mutual coordination of Amir Muawiya, Shian Ali stopped their activities but tragedy of Karbala creates agitation in them again. The tragedy of Karbala affected all the Muslim community and the emotional and spiritual anarchy surrounded the hearts of the people. In results common Muslims’ sympathy and support became with Ahl al Bait so many movements started against Umayyads but Shian Ali could not take any advantage of it. At last they participated in the Hashmi movement of Banu Abbas. So Banu Abbas wiped out their dynasty and set on the throne of authority.
Those poor people who accepted Islam and work under Umayyads were known as Mawali. They were highly dissatisfied because Umayyad rulers deprive them of their Islamic benefits. Sometimes they had to pay Jazia and Kharaj which was illegitimate. Umayyads monopolizes all the government post and show discriminating behavior with Mamalis. Non Arabs considered themselves more civilized then Arabs so they never liked the Arabs dominancy so they join the Hashmi movement group by group.
12. Abbasid movement:
Abbasid movement made downfall of Umayyads suitably very closer to them. The abilities and wisdom of Abbasid leaders and Abu Muslim Kharasani’s praise worthy qualities put to end Umayyads dynasty because with the help of their organizational abilities, political vision and supporters they propagated against Umayyad’s tyranny and cruelty in a way that all the unsatisfied people of the society gathered around the Abbasid. From every corner of the state slogans were raised against Umayyads so the Umayyads dynasty doomed to downfall.