Researcher of Political Science & Classical Islam. Initiated by the Khwajagan i-Naqshband.
Excerpted from the Tafsir of Imam Hasan al-Askari , p. 356-359:
A man came to Imam Hasan ibn ‘Ali and said, O son of the Prophet! I am from your Shia. His Eminence said: O servant of Allah, if you are really obedient in our commands and prohibitions, then indeed you are true. If not, then you must not increase your sin by claiming an excellence you do not deserve, and do not say that you are from our Shia. Just say you are our friend and muhib (supporter) and enemy of your enemies. In this way also, you would be upon righteousness.
Someone said to Imam Husayn ibn ‘Ali : O son of Allah’s Messenger, I am your Shia. His Eminence said: Fear Allah, and do not claim that for which Allah labels you as a liar and transgressor because our Shias are those whose souls are immune from all kinds of deceit, hypocrisy and cheating. Rather, say you are our muhib (supporter).
Someone said to Imam Zayn al-Abidin ‘Ali ibn Husayn : O son of Allah’s Messenger, I am your sincere Shia. His Eminence said: O servant of Allah, you have become like Prophet Ibrahim Khalilullah  regarding whom Allah says:
“Wa inna min Shi’iatihi laibrahim. Idh jaa a rabbau bi qalbin salim” (37:83-84)
“And most surely Abraham was among the Shi’ite (of Noah). When he came to his Lord with a free heart” (37:83-84)
If your heart is perfect like the heart of Prophet Ibrahim , then indeed you are our true believer and if you are not purified of all deceit and treachery, you are not our Shia. And know that if you are purposely lying, you will be involved in paralysis and it will not be cured until death or you will be inolved in leprosy, so that it will be expiation of this lie of yours.
Imam Muhammad al-Baqir said to a man who proudly claimed to be a Shia of the purified progeny of Muhammad: By the Lord of the Holy Ka’aba, your pride on this, beside a lie, is increase in your deceit. O servant of Allah, do you like to spend your wealth for yourself more than you like to spend on the faithful believers? The man said that he liked to spend on himself. His Eminence said: There you have it, you are not our Shia. Instead, you can say: I am your muhib (supporter) and hopeful of salvation in the Hereafter because of affection towards you.
…Someone said in presence of Imam Musa al-Kadhim: I saw a man in the market who was saying: I am a sincere Shia of Muhammad and Aale Muhammad and he was calling out aloud: I will sell these clothes to one who pays the highest price. His Eminence said: One who knows the quantity of his own substance, does not act foolishly and does not become a loser. Know that the example of this man is like someone who says: I am like Salman or Miqdad or Abu Dhar etc. But inspite of this he inflates the rate of goods that are being sold, who conceals the defects from customers and demands a higher rate from a stranger. And when the customer goes away, he says, I purchase at this rate, though he does not want to purchase it. Now tell me, can he be like Salman, Miqdad, Abu Dhar or Ammar? By Allah such a man cannot be like them. But we do not forbid him to say: I am a muhib (supporter) of Muhammad and the Aale Muhammad. I am a friend of their friends and an enemy of their enemies.
Source: [The Tafsir: Commentary on the Qur’an ascribed to Imam al-Hasan al-Askari. English translation by Syed Ather Husain S.H. Rizvi. The Tafsir: Commentary on the Qur’an ascribed to Imam al-Hasan al-Askari, p. 356-359. 2009. Ansariyan Publications, Qum, Islamic Republic of Iran]
. Abu Nu’aym al-Asbahani relates a Hadith on similar lines in “Hilyat-ul-Awliya”:
On the authority of Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud the Messenger of Allah said:
“Forty men from amongst my Ummah are such whose hearts are like that of Ibrahim’s heart. By virtue of them, Allah Almighty protects His creation from calamities; it is they who are known as Abdaal.”
. Tabarani reports a Hadith in his “Al-Aswat”: On the authority of Anas ibn Malik, the Messenger of Allah said:
“The earth shall never be without forty men, whose hearts shall be upon Ibrahim. By virtue of them, the earth is in existence and by virtue of them (Allah Almighty) provides rain to you. From among them none dies but Allah Almighty replaces him with another.”