When Rasulullah SAW initially called towards Islam, a handful of people embraced the faith. Abdullah bin Mas´ood RA was amongst those few. He was one of the five companions of the Nabi SA who were distinctively knows as the Shi´ah (followers) of Maulana Ali SA even during the era of RasulullahSAW. He would call them so and openly recount their virtues.
Abdullah bin Mas´ood’s RA name is also mentioned amongst those distinguished for their austerity and knowledge. What makes him stand out among others is his knowledge of al-Quran and its recitation. One day Rasulullah SAW instructed him to recite the Quran. Abdullah RA replied, a little surprised, “O Rasulullah, the Quran is revealed to you and you want me to recite for you?” To which Rasulullah SAW replied, “Yes, I like to hear the Quran recited by others. Abdullah RA started reciting Surah al-Nisaa’ (the fourth surah in al Quran) till he reached the ayah, “if we brought from each people a witness, and we brought thee as a witness over these people!” Rasulullah SAW told him to stop there. When AbdullahRA turned towards RasulullahSAW he saw both his eyes filled with tears.
Abdullah bin Mas´ood RA said, “I recited 70 Surahs of al-Quran in the presence of Rasulullah SAW and completed the remainder in the presence of the noblest of all after him: Ali bin Abi Talib SA.
In his later years, whilst in Kufa, Abdullah bin Mas´ood RA came to know of the excesses of the usurping regime. He made people aware of the decadence of religious practices. When the message spread, Kufa’s governor Waleed privately told him to either refrain from spreading such comments or to leave the city. Abdullah RA replied, “I will not stop from saying the truth.” Ultimately, Abdullah RA chose to leave Kufa and journey to Medina, where he passed away.