Comprehensiveness of the Sharia
Imam Reza(A.S.) Answers Al-Ma'mun
Al-Ma'mun (The Abbasid caliph) sent Al-Fazl-bin-Sahl, his vizier, to summon Imam Reza(A.S.). When the Holy Imam attended, the caliph said, "I would like you to summarize for me the legal and the illegeal matters in addition to the obligatory and the recommendable practices of Islam, for you are certainly the argument of Allah against His creatures and the core of knowledge." Imam Reza(A.S.) agreed and asked for an inkwell and a paper. He then asked Al-Fazl to write down.
In the Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful
We are sufficed with the confession that there is no god but Allah the One the absolute Who did not have a wife or a son. He is Self-existent, All-hearing, All-seeing, Almighty, All-existing, Everlasting, Light, All-knowing Who is not ignorant, All-powerful Who is not incapable, All-sufficient Who needs no one, and All-just Who does not wrong anyone. He created everything. Nothing is like Him. There is no one match, opponent, opposite, or equal to Him.
I declare that Mohammed(S.A.W.) is His servant, messenger, trusty, and choice among the creatures. He is the master of the messengers, "the Seal of the Prophets", and the best in the words. There is no prophet after him and there is no conversion or change to his religion. I declare that everything with which Mohammed(S.A.W.) came is the evident right. We believe in him as well as all the messengers, prophets, and evidences of Allah that preceded him. We believe in his truthful Book that "falsehood can not reach it from any direction. It is the revelation from the All-wise, praiseworthy One. (Holy Qu'ran 41:42) We also believe that his Book is the prevalent over all the (heavenly) Books and that it is all right from its beginning up to its end. We believe in its decisive (Verses), allegorical, particular, general, promise, threat, repealing, repealed, and news. No creature can ever bing its equivalent.
We declare that the evidence and argument on the believers after the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.), the manager of the Muslims' affairs, the spokesman of the Holy Quran, and the knowledgeable of its rulings is his brother, successor, and trustee whose relation to him is as same as Aaron's relation to Moses; Ali-bin-Abi Talib(A.S.). He is the commander of the faithful believers, the Imam of the God-fearing, the leader of the white-foreheaded honourables, the doyen (head) of the believers, and the best of the successors of the prophets. After him come Al-Hasan(A.S.) and Al-Hussein(A.S.) successively up to now. They are the Prophet's progeny, the most knowlegeable with the Book (Of Allah) and the Sunnah, the fairest in issues, the most favorable for leadership in every time, the firmest handle, the imams of right guidance, and the argument against people of this world until Allah seizes the earth and those living in it. He is surely the best of the seizers.
We believe that anyone who opposes them (the Imams) is deviant, misleading, and deserter of the right and the guidance. They (the Imams) are the interpreters of the Holy Quran and the spokespersons of the Holy Prophet with directness. He whoever dies before he acknowledge and follows them by names is regarded as one of those who died before Islam.
Piety, chastity, honesty. goodness, diligence, keeping the deposit of the pious and the sinful, lengthy prostration (to Allah), night worship, avoidance of the forbidden acts, expectation of the relief by means of patience, good companionship, good neighbourhood, doing favours limitlessly, abstinence from injury, and treating the believers with happy mien, advice, and mercy-all these are among the features of the Imams' religion.
The ritual ablution - as Allah instructed in His Book - is washing the face and the hands and passing water over the head and the feet. To do each action one time is the obligatory, and to do each action twice is recommendable. Any addition is a rewardless sin. Invalidators of the ablution are fart, urination, excretion, sleep, and ceremonial impurity.
Anyone who passes water over the slippers (in the ritual ablution) is opposing Allah, His messenger, and His Book. Besides, his ablution will be invalid.
When Omar heard that Imam Ali(A.S.) opposes people who used to pass water over their slippers, he said to him, 'I saw the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) pass water over the slippers.' 'Was it that before or after the revelation of Sura of Al-Ma'ida?' asked Imam Ali(A.S.). 'I do not know,' answered Omar. Then Imam Ali(A.S.) said, 'I am sure that the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) did not pass water over the slippers since the revelation of Sura of Al-Ma'ida'.
Bathing after the ceremonial impurity, wet dreams, and menstruation, in addition to the bathing of those who wash the dead, are obligatory.
Friday bathing, the two eids bathing, bathing before arrival in Mecca and Medina, bathing of the umrah, bathing of ihram, bathing of Arafah Day, and bathings on first, nineteenth, twenth-first, and twenty-third of Ramadan -all these bathings are recommendable.
The obligatory prayers are as follows:
The Dhuhr Prayer is four rak'as, the Asr Prayer is four rak'as, the Maghrib Prayer is three rak'as, the Esha' Prayer is four rak'as, and the Fajr Prayer is two rak'as. These are seventeen obligatory rak'as. The rocommendable rak'as are thirty-four. Eight rak'as are performed before the Dhuhr Prayer, eight are performed after it, four are performed after the Maghrib Prayer, two (although considered as one) are performed-while sitting- after the Esha' Prayer, and eight are performed after midnight. Witr prayer is three rak'as followed by two.
The prayers should be performed as soon as their times fall. Every single rak'as that is performed collectively is equal to two thousand rak'as that are performed individually. Do not follow a sinful imam (of a collective prayer). Follow - in the collective prayers only those who believe in the Wilayah . Do not offer the prayers while you are wearing skins of dead animals or beasts.
Shortening the prayers is valid after a traveller is four farsakhs(*) away from his home country -four bareeds (*) back and four forth. When prayers are shortened, fasting should be broken. Qunut is in four prayers - the Dhuhr Prayer, the Maghrib and Esha' Prayers, the Friday prayer, and the Asr Prayer. Qunuts are performed before raku' after qira'a.
* Farsakh is usually reckoned as equal to between 3 and 312 miles (5 to 512 km). One bareed equals 12 miles (4 Farsakhs).
The funeral Prayer is five takbirs. It is empty of taslim because taslim is performed only when there is ruku' and sujoud (*), and the Funeral Prayer has no ruku' or sujoud. The graves should be squared, not humped. Voices should be raised when 'bismillahir rahmanir rahim - in the Name of Allah, the Beneficent the Merciful-' is recited with Sura of Fatihah.
* Ruku': The obligatory genuflection in the prayer.
Sujoud: The obligatory prostration of the prayers.
The obligatory zakat is five (silver) dirhams for each two hundred dirhams. It is not obligatory in less than this quantity. For quantities more than the previous, the zakat is one (golden) dirham for every forty dirhams. It is not obligatory in less than forty dirhams. It is obligatory only when a whole year lapses. It should be given only to the Imamites. For the golden dinars, the obligatory zakat is half a dinar for every twenty.
The khums is paid only one time from the profits. The obligatory zakat of wheat. barley, dates, raisins, and any grain the quantity of which is five wasqs - a measurement - is one tenth provided that it is irrigated by rainfall or a river. In case it is irrigated by pails, the zakat then is half a tithe for both the insolvent and the solvent. The zakat or the other grains is one or two handfuls. This is because Allah does not impose on any soul a responsibility beyond its ability and He does not overburden the servants. One wasq is sixty saa's. One saa is sixty rotls and four mudds. A mudd is two and quarter Iraqi rotls. Imam As-Sadiq(a) said: It is nine Iraqi rotls which is equal to six Medinian rotls."
Zakatul-Fitr(*) is obligatory on everybody apart from the age or the social class. It is half a saa of wheat and one saa of dates and raisins. Because it is obligatory, it is illicit to give the Zakatul-Fitr to other than the Imamites.
* Zakatul-Fitr: the obligatory payment made on the night just before the Eidul-Fitr under certain laws on everybody.
The period of menstruation is between ten and three days. The semi-menstruant should perform the ritual bathing before she performs any prayers that she misses during her period of menstruation, but she should settle the days of fast that she misses.
Fasting should be observed during month of Ramadan only when the new moon is seen and should be stopped when the new moon (of the next month) is seen. It is invalid to offer the Tarawih Prayer(*) collectively. It is recommendable to fast during three days every month - one day for every ten days; a Thursday from the first ten, a Wednesday from the middle ten, and a Thursday from the last ten - days of a month. It is fine and recommendable to fast during month of Shaban. The Messenger of Allah(S.A.W.) said: Shaban is my month and Ramadan is Allah's" It is acceptable to settle the missed fast of Ramadan in different days.
* Tarawih Prayer: The - not obligatory- one thousand rak'a prayer that is distributed on nights of Ramadan.
The Hajj to the Holy House - of Allah - is obligatory upon anyone who finds a way to it. "Way" in this regard stands for supplies and a riding animal - a means of trasportation. Except for people of Mecca, any form of hajj except that of tamattu, (*) is illict. It is also illicit to opt for hajj of ifrad(*) and hajj of qiran(*) that the others perform. Ihram is illicit before attaining the miqat. Allah says: Complete the hajj and umrah in obedience to Allah. (Holy Qur'an 2:196) It is illicit to immolate a castrate sheep because it is imperfect. It is acceptable to immolate a sheep whose testicles are pressed between two rocks so that it will lose libido.
* Hajj of tamatuu' ifrad, and qiran are the three major forms each with certain rites and for certain circumstances that are detailed in the Risalah books concerning the Islamic Laws.
Jihad is obligatory only under the leadership of a just imam. The killed for defending their wealth, baggage, or themselves are martyrs. It is illicit to kill any disbeliever in time of taqiyah except the murderers and the aggressors when safety is guaranteed. It is also illicit to use the wealth of people, whether of other sects or not, wrongly. Taqiyah is obligatory in its proper time - when it becomes necessary. Those who perjure out of taqiyah so as to save themselves against harm are not to undergo the doctrinal provision.
Divorce is valid only when it is implemented according to the Islamic laws that Allah the Majestic mentoined in His Book or the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) referred to in his Sunnah. Any other form of divorce is invalid, including the forms that oppose the Book.
Similarly, any form of marriage that opposes the Sunnah is invalid. It is illicit to marry more than four mistresses in one time. It is illicit for husbands who divorced their wives three times, according to the Sharia, to have them as wives anew before they marry other husbands. Amirul Muminin Ali(A.S.) said: Be away from women whom are divorced three times in one situation, for they are still wives.
It is recommendable to send blessings to the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) in every situation, including blowing of the wind ), sneezing and so on.
It is obligatory to cherish the disciples of Allah and their disciples and to hate and disavow the enemies of Allah and their masters.
It is obligatory to treat the parents piously. In case they are polytheists, you may not obey them, but maintain lawful relations with them, because Allah says: Give thanks to Me first and then to your parents, to Me all things proceed. If they try to force you to consider things equal to Me, which you cannot justify, do not obey them. (Holy Qur'an 31:14-5)
Amiral Muminin (a) said: Those who were described as worshipping others besides Allah did not pray or fast for their sake. They only obeyed them when they ordered to act disobediently to Allah. I heard the Messenger of Allah(S.A.W.) saying: "He whoever obeys any creature in acts other than those of obedience to Allah the Majestic is converting to atheism and betaking a god other than Allah."
The legality of a fetus (of an eatable animal) is materialized when the legality of (the slaughtering of) its mother is materialized.
The faults of the prophets are regarded as insignificant and pardoned for their prophecy.
The laws of inheritance are errorless provided that they are applied as exactly as Allah has enacted. Except the husband or the wife, no one wil inherit (a dead person) with the parents and the sons. Those whom are given shares according to the Book of Allah are more meritorious than those whom are not. The inheritance of the agnation is not in the religion of Allah.
An immolated animal for the newborn bady, whether male or female, should be slaughtered on the seventh day of age. On the same day, the baby should be had his hair cut, his name should be chosen, and a golden or silver alms that is as weighty as his cut hair should be given.
Deeds of the servants are created optionally not compulsorily. Do not believe in fatalism or in determinism. Allah the Majestic does not punish an innocent for a sin that is committed by a sinful. Likewise, He does not torment sons and children for the sins of their fathers. He the Exalted says: No one will be considered responsible for another's sins. (Holy Qur'an 6:164)- ... nor can man achieve anything except that he had exerted his own efforts in acting. (Holy Qur'an 53:39).
Allah forgives, never treats unjustly, never orders the servants to obey somebody that He knows he will oppress and deviate them, and never chooses for conveying His message anyone that He knows he would disbelieve and follow the Shaitan. Islam is something different from faith. Every faithful believer is Muslim but not every Muslim is faithful believer.
A larcener is faithless in the moment he commits larceny, a drunken is faithless in the moment he drinks - alcohol-, and a murderer is faithless in the moment he kills a respectful soul. The individuals that are subject to the doctrinal provisions are neither believers nor atheists.
Allah will not submit the faithful believers to Hell after He promised them Paradise and eternal abode in it. He whomever is to be in Hell out of hypocrisy, sinfulness, or a grand sin will not be joined with the faithful believers. Hell will surround only the disbelievers. Any guilt due to which its committer will be submitted to Hell is sin. The polytheists, disbelievers, hypocrites, and committers of grand sins will be submitted to Hell.
Intercession is permissible for the seekers of intercession.
It is obligatory to enjoin good and forbid evily by way of the tongue.
Faith stands for the fulfillment of the ritual duties and the abstinence from the forbidden acts. It is acknowledgment of the heart, uttered declaration. and the application of the organs.
Takbir in Eidul-Adha comes after ten prayers beginning with the Dhuhr Prayer of Day of Immolation (the tenth of Dhu'l-Hijja(*). Takbir in Eidul-Fitr comes after five prayers beginning with the Maghrib Prayer of th night before breaking the fast.
* Dhu'l-Hijja: The 12th month of the year in the Islamic calendar during which the season of the hajj, and the Eidul-Adha, occurs.
* Takbir: Saying 'Allahu Akbar' - Allah is the greatest.
The puerperal should leave the prayers for twenty days no more. She should offer prayers if she becomes clean before this period, otherwise she should complete the twenty days. Then, she should wash herself and apply the acts of the semi-menstruant.
It is obligatory to believe in the tomb agony, Munkar and Nakeer, the resurrection after death, the Judgment, the Balance, and the Path. It is also obligatory to believe in the disvowal of the leaders of deviation and their followers,. compliance with the disiples of Allah, forbiddance of the alcohol. The few amount of any beverage the much amount of which is intoxicating is haram. The individual under constraint ought not to drink wine because it may kill him. It is also obligatory to believe in the forbiddance of having the meat of any animal that has a canine tooth and every bird that has a claw, and the forbiddance of (eating) the spleen because it is blood, any fish other than the shellfish, and any bird that does not have a gizzard. Regarding eggs, it is halal to have any egg whose edges are uneven and it is haram to have any egg whose edges are equal.
It is also obligatory to believe in (the necessity of) the abstinence from the forbidden matters, which are killing the soul that Allah forbade, drinking alcohol, impiety to the parents, flight from fighting the enemy, wrongful consuming of the orphans' property, having the dead meat, the blood, the pork, and any animal that is slaughtered and consecrated in the name of someone (or something) other than Allah except in states of necessity. It is furthermore obligatory to believe in the forbiddance of usury, unlawful trade after a proof is demonstrated, gambling, cheating in weighing and measuring, false accusation of married ladies, fornication, sodomy, perjury, despair of receiving comfort from Allah, feeling of being secure from Allah's unexpected plans, losing hope in Allah's mercy, supporting and approach to the unjust rulers, false swearing, detention of the rights in solvency, arrogance, atheism, squandering, treachery, concealment of testimony, diversions that prevent from mentioning Allah such as singing and playing music, and finally insistence on the insignificant sins.
The previous were the principals of the religion.
All praise is due to Allah the Lord of the worlds.
All peace and blessings be upon the Lord's Messenger and his family.
His Wording of Monotheism
The following are excerptions from the long narration and the well-known session in which Imam Reza(A.S.) overcame all the theologians of the various sects opposing Islam whom were gathered by Al-Ma'mun for disputation.
Imran As-Sabi said to Imam Reza(A.S.): Do we declare the oneness of Allah by reality or by description?
Imam Reza(A.S.) asnwered: Certainly, Allah the light, the Initiator of this cosmos, and the Foremost is One without any associate or any accompanying thing. He is Unique without a second. He is neither realized nor unknown. He is neither decisive nor allegorical. He is neither mentioned nor forgotten. He is not a thing that familiar name can fit Him. The Initiator has been Self-existent and light that is dispending with everything. He did not exist in a definite time and will not last for a definite time. He has not existed in anything. No sayer can invent a statement describing Him even if he thinks of light, example, ghost, or shadow. All that was before the creation and in the situation where there was nothing but Him. The same situation is in this position. There are only imaginary attributes and a translation of a picture in the mind purposed for making others understand. Did you understan, Imran?
Imran answered affirmatively.
The Holy Imam(A.S.) then went on: You should know that imagination, innovation, volition, and will have the same meaning although they are three expressions. The foremost of His imagination, volition, and will is the letters that He made the origin of everything and the answer for every problem. He has not decided in His imagination a meaning, other than the finite and existent, because nothing was before or with Him. Imagination, however, preceded the letters; therefore, they became new by means of the imagination. The imagination was existent when there was no trend before Allah. The imagination of Allah is something different from Him. On that account, the action of a thing is something different from it, the edge of a thing is something different from it, the feature of a thing is something different from the thing that is described with that feature, and the border of a thing is something different from the thing is related to that border. Letters are broken up and scattered things that have no single indication. When they are combined in a definite arrangement, they will refer to other things like names and features.
You should know also that there is no feature to the indescribable, no name to the meaningless, and no edge to the edgeless. All the names and features refer to perfection and existence, but do not refer to encirclement, like their referring to the terms such as squares, circles, and triangles, because Allah can be refognized through names and attributes and not through terms. Allah is not subject to any terms; therefore, the creatures cannot recognize Him in the same way they recognize themselves. If His attributes and names do not refer to Him, then the creatures are worshipping His names and attributes, not their meanings. If this is true, the worshipped god will be someone other than Allah, since His attributes refer to something other than Him.
Imran asked: Is imagination a created being or not?
Imam Reza(A.S.) answered: Imagination is a created inactive being that cannot be realized by inactivity. It is a created being just because it is originated by Allah. Because it is called a thing. it becomes a created being. There are only two things - Allah and His creatures. A created being can be inactive, moving, variable, static, familiar, or obscure. Any being that acquires a name is created.
His Wording on Selection
Imam Reza(A.S.) was attending a session that included the best scholars of Iraq and Khurasan when Al-Ma'mun asked them about the exegesis of Allah's saying: We gave the Book as an inheritance to Our chosen servants, among whom some are unjust against their souls, some are moderate, and some are exceedingly virtuous by the permission of Allah. This is indeed a great favor. (Holy Qur'an 35:32) They answered that the verse refers to all the ummah. Al-Ma'mun then turned to Imam Reza(A.S.) and asked for his opinion.
The Holy Imam answered: I do not agree with them. I say that Allah the Blessed refers to the immaculate progeny of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) exclusively.
Al-Ma'mun asked for an explanation.
The Holy Imam(A.S.) explained: If Allah referred to the ummah, they all should be in Paradise. This is for His saying: ... among whom some are unjust against permission of Allah. This is indeed a great favour. (Holy Qur'an 35:32).
Allah then informs that all of them will be in Paradise. He the Majestic said: They will enter the gardens of Eden. (Holy Qur'an 35:33). Thus, the verse refers to the immaculate progeny of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) exclusively.
Imam Reza(A.S.) then added: The immaculate progeny are those whom Allah describes:O' People of the house, Allah wants to keep away all kinds of uncleanness from you and to purify you thoroughly. (Holy Qur'an 33:33)
The Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) said about them: "I am leaving among you the two weighty things - the Book of Allah and ,my progeny; my family. They will not depart each other until they will join me on the Divine Pool(Kawthar). Consider how will you regard me in treating them. O people, do not suggest to them, because they are more knowledgeable than you are.
The scholars asked Abul-Hasan(A.S.) whether the progeny of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) and the Prophet's family are the same. The Imam(A.S.) said: They are the same.
The scholars claimed that the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) is related to have said, "My ummah is my family," and the Holy Prophet's companions agreed unanimously on the fact that Holy Prophet Mohammed's family is his ummah.
Imam Reza(A.S.) worded: Well, tell me whether it is lawful for Holy Prophet Mohammed's family to have any alms in possession. "No, it is unlawful," answered the scholars.
Then the Holy Imam(A.S.) asked: Tell me whether it is lawful for the ummah to have the alms in possession. "Yes, it is lawful for them," answered they.
The Holy Imam(A.S.) commented: This is one difference between Holy Prophet Mohammed's family and the ummah. Woe to you! Where are you misled? Do you ignore the Holy Quran or are you transgressing people? Have you not known that this narrative is obviously dedicated to the guided choice ones exclusively?
"How can you prove this, Abul-Hasan?" asked the scholars.
The Holy Imam(A.S.) answered: This is clear in Allah's saying: We sent Noah and Abraham and placed prophethood and the Book among their offsprings, some of whom have the right guidance. However, most of them are evildoers. (Holy Qur'an 57:26) Hence, the inheritance of the Book is dedicated to the guided ones, not the evildoers
In his supplication to his Lord, Noah said - as Allah relates in the Holy Quran -: Lord, my son is a member of my family. Your promise is always true and you are the best Judge. (Holy Qur'an 11:45). He said so after Allah had promised to save his family and him. However, Allah the Exalted answered him: He is not one of your family. He is a man of unrighteous deeds. Do not ask me about that which you have no knowledge. I advise you not to become an ignorant person. (Holy Qur'an 11:46).
Al-Ma'mun asked: "Did Allah give distinction to the Holy Prophet's progeny over people?"
The Holy Imam(A.S.); answered: Allah the Majestic the Omnipotent gave distinction of the Holy Prophet's progeny over people in the Wise Book.
Al-Ma'mun asked for examples from the Holy Quran.
The Holy Imam(A.S.) cited: Allah chose (and gave distinction to) Adam, Noah the family of Abraham, and Imran over all the people of the world. They were the offspring of one another. (Holy Qur'an 3:33-4) In another place in the Holy Quran, Allah says: Are they jealous of the favors that Allah has done to some people? We have given to the family of Abraham the Book, Wisdom, and a great Kingdom. (Holy Qur'an 4:54).
Then Allah refers this to the believers at whom he addressed: Believers, obey Allah, His messenger, and your (qualified) leaders. (Holy Qur'an 4:59). In the previous Verse, Allah refers to the Qualified leaders to whom He gave the Book and wisdom in inheritance, but people envied them for these two things as He affirms in His saying: "Are they jealous of the favors that Allah has done to some people? We have given to the family of Abraham the Book, Wisdom, and a great Kingdom. (Holy Qur'an 4:54). The favors stand for the (obligatory) obedience to the immaculate choice ones and the great kingdom stands for the obedience to them.
"Does Allah the Elevated explain this selection in the Book?" asked the scholars.
The Holy Imam(A.S.) answered: Allah explains this selection obviously in twelve Verses in the Holy Book and refers to it in many Verses whose meanings are hidden.
First, it is explained in Allah's saying: And warn your nearest relations.( Holy Qur'an 26:214) Ubay-bin-Ka'b adds 'and your selected family', to the previous verse, and the addition is recorded in Abdullah-bin-Mas'ud's copy of the Holy Quran. and that statement, which is certainly a sublime standing, a great excellence, and a grand honor for the Holy Prophet's family whom are exclusively stated in the previous Verse.
The second Verse of the selection is Allah's saying: people of the house, Allah wants to keep away all kinds of uncleanness from you and to purify you thoroughly. (Holy Qur'an 33:33) Except the obstinate, no one can deny this merit because it is obviously clear.
The third Verse of selection is that in which Allah gave distinction to the Immaculates over all others and ordered His Holy Prophet in His saying: If anyone disputes (your prophesy) after knowledge has come to you, say, "Let each of us bring our children, women, and ourselves to one place and pray to Allah to condemn the liars among us. (Holy Qur'an 3:61) The Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) carried out this order when he brought Ali(A.S.), Al-Hasan(A.S.), Al-Hussein(A.S.), and Fatima(A.S.) for praying to Allah for condemning the lying party. Thus, Allah added them to the Holy Prophet. Do you know the indication of Allah's saying: "... and ourselves...?"
The scholars said: This is the Prophet's personality."
Imam Reza(A.S.) commented: This is not accurate. It is an indication to Ali (A.S.). This can be proved by the Holy Prophet's saying: "Let the Luhai' as keep on doing so and I will subjugate them to a man who is like myself - Ali(A.S.)." No one can precede this particularity, disagree about this virtue, or overtake this honor. Thus, the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) compared Ali's personality to his.
The fourth Verse of selection is that when the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) ordered everybody to leave the Mosque except his family. People showed dissatisfaction for such a procedure and Al-Abbas discussed with the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) about the question, but the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) answered: It was not I who dismissed you all except Ali(A.S.). It was Allah who did so." This is a clear explanation ot the Holy Prophet's saying to Ali(A.S.): "Your relation to me is as same as Aaron's to Moses."
"What is the relation between this and the Quran?" asked the scholars.
Imam Reza(A.S.) answered:This is in the Holy Qur'an in Allah's saying: We sent a revelation to Moses and his brother to build houses for their people in the Pharaoh's town and to build them facing one another. (Holy Qur'an 10:87) This verse shows Aaron's relation to Moses. It also shows Ali's standing to the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.). Besides, there is a clear evidence in the Holy Prophet's saying: "Except Mohammed(S.A.W.) and Mohammed's family, all the ceremonially impure and the menstruant are forbidden from entering this Mosque."
"This explanation and evidence cannot be found with anyone other than you, the Holy Prophet's family," said the scholars.
Imam Reza(A.S.) commented: Who can deny this fact? The Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) said: I am the city of knowledge and Ali(A.S.) is its gate. He whoever betakes himself to the city of knowledge should first see its gate."
The previous clear explanation of the virtue, honor, preference, selection, and immaculacy cannot be denied by anyone except the obstinate. All praise belongs to Allah for so.
The fifth Verse of selection is Allah's saying: Give the relatives their dues. (Holy Qur'an 17:26) Almighty Allah gave this particularity to the Holy Prophet's family exclusively as a sign of their distinction over the ummah. When this Verse was revealed to the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.), he summoned Fatima(A.S.), his daughter, and said to her, "Fadak is one of the territories that we did not exhaust our horses or camels to seize them; therefore, it is mine exclusively . Now, I gift it to you and your offspring according to Allah's instructions."
The sixth Verse of the selection is Allah's saying: (Muhammad(S.A.W.)), say, "I do not ask you for any payment for my preaching to you except (Your) love of (my near) relatives. (Holy Qur'an 42:23). This is a particularity for the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) and his family exclusively.
Relating the sayings of Noah(A.S.), Allah the Majestic says: My people, I do not ask any payment for what I preach to you. No one except Allah has to give me any reward. I do not drive away those who have faith (in my teaching); they will all receive mercy from their Lord. I know that you are ignorant people. (Holy Qur'an 11:29).
Relating the sayings of Hood the prophet(A.S.), Allah says: My people, I do not ask any reward for what I have preached to you. No one can give me my reward except my Creator. Will you then not take heed?( Holy Qur'an 11:51).
For the Holy Prophet Mohammed (S.A.W.), Allah orders him: Say, "I do not ask you for any payment for my preaching to you excpt (your) love of (my near) relatives." Allah imposed the love of the Holy Prophet's relatives only when He knows that they will never apostatize and they will never deviate.
It happens that a man may bear any bit of malice in the heart for another, who is an intimate friend of him, when a member of the family of the previous is an opponent to the latter. On that account, Allah wants to make the Holy Prophet's heart completely free of malice against the believers; therefore, he ordered them to love the Prophet's family. The Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) then will not hate anybody who loves his family and him. In the same manner, the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) will hate those who dislike his family, because they have ignored one of the duties of Allah, This is surely the most prominent honor.
When the previous Verse was revealed, the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) addressed a sermon before his companions. He said: All praise and gratitude is due to Allah. O people, Allah has imposed upon you a matter. Will you carry it out?" No one answered him, too. On the third day, he added: "O people, it is not gold, silver, food, or drink that you should pay." Thus, they asked what it was. The Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) then recited the Verse-"(Muhammad), say, "I do not ask you for any payment for my preaching to you except (your) love of (my near) relatives.". They agreed to carry out this commandment. Unfortunately, most of them broke it.
My father related to me his fathers' relation that Al-Husain-bin-Ali(A.S.) had narrated the following:
Muhajirs and Ansar came to the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) to offer him their estates and souls since - as they claimed - he had to spend great sums of his own wealth for his personal expenditures in addition to the continuous visits of the delegations. As a result, Allah the Majestic sent the faithful Spirit - the Angel Gabriel - to convey to the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) His saying: "(Muhammad), say, "I do not ask you for any payment for my preaching to you except (your) love of (my near) relatives." This means that you should not hurt my relatives after my death. As they left, some of them murmured, "He rejected our offers only for urging us accepting (the leadership of) his relatives after his death. This was surely something he himself invented in that session. They also said horrible things that made Allah reveal His saying: They say, "(Muhammad) has invented it by himself." Say, "Had I invented it, you would not have been able to rescue me from Allah. He knows best what you say about it. He is our witness and He is All-Forgiving and All-Merciful. (Holy Qur'an 46:8).
Accordingly, the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) summoned them and wondered whether they had done something due to which the Verse was revealed. They confessed that they had said horrible things. When the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) recited the Verse before them, they wept heavily. Hence, Allah revealed: It is He who accepts the repentance of His servants, forgives their evil deeds and knows all about what you do. (Holy Qur'an 42:25).
The seventh Verse of selection is Allah's saying: Allah Showers His blessings upon the Prophet and the angels seek forgiveness for him. believers, pray for the Prophet and greet him with, "Peace be with you. Holy Qur'an 33:56).
All the obstinate realized that when this Verse was revealed, some people came to the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) and asked him to teach them how to pray for him. Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) instructed, "Say: O Allah, bless Mohammed(S.A.W.) and Mohammed's family the way you blessed Abraham and Abraham's family. You are surely Praiseworthy and Glorious." Can any one of you disagree to this?
"No, no one can," answered the scholars. Al-Ma'mun said, "This is a unanimous thing. However, we need something more evident about the Holy Prophet's family excerpted from the Holy Quran."
Imam Reza(A.S.) said: Allah says: Yasin, by the Quran, the Book of wisdom, you are a Messenger and you follow the right path. (Holy Qur'an 36:1-4) Who is that Yasin?
"Undoubtedly," said the scholars, "Yasin is Mohammed(S.A.W.)."
Imam Reza(A.S.) commented: Allah has given to Mohammed(S.A.W.) and his holy family a characteristic that, except the heedful, no one can attain its meaning. In the Holy Quran, Allah blesses no one save the prophets(A.S.). He the Exalted says:
"Peace be with Noah among all men in the worlds. Holy Qur"an 37:79)
"Peace be with Abraham. (Holy Qur"an 37:109) and
"Peace be with Moses and Aaron. (Holy Qur'an 37:120)
Allah, thus, does not bless the family of Noah, Abraham, or Moses. But He blesses Mohammed's family in His saying: Peace be with the family of Yasin. (Holy Qur'an 37:130) Yasin is Mohammed (S.A.W.).
Al-Ma'mun expressed, "I have already known that only the core of the prophecy can explain this clearly.
Imam Reza(A.S.) went on: The eighth verse of selection is Allah's saying: Know that whatever property you may gain, one fifth belongs to Allah, the Messenger, the kindred, orphans, the needy and those who need money while on a journey. (Holy Qur'an 8:41) In the previous Verse, Allah adds the share of the Holy Prophet's family to his share as well as the share of His Messenger. This is the distinction between the Holy Prophet's family and the ummah whom Allah has situated in a place and situated the Holy Prophet's family in another higher place. Besides, Almighty Allah chooses to the Holy Prophet's family what He chooses for Himself as He selected them. He begins with mentioning Himself, His Messenger, and then the kindred. This is operative not only in the distribution of the spoils of war, but also in everything that Allah accepts for Himself and for them. Allah says: Know that whatever property you may gain, one fifth belongs to Allah, the Messenger, the kindred... This holy saying is an affirmative declaration and an everlasting commandment for them in the Book of Allah that, "Falsehood can not reach it from any direction. It is the revelation from the All-Wise, Praiseworthy One.( Holy Qur'an 41:42).
Regarding Allah's reference to the orphans and the needy, it is natural that the share of the orphan should be stopped when the feature of orphange ceases to exist. The same thing can be said about the share of the needy. While, on the other hand, the share of the Holy Prophet's kindred, whether they are needy or not, is incessant up to the Day of Resurrection, because no one is wealthier than Allah or the Holy Prophet; however, their shares are incessant. Allah the Majestic has decided for the Holy Prophet's family anything that He decides for Himself and His Messenger. As He decides for Himself and His Messenger a share in the spoils of war, He decides for the Holy Prophet's family a share. He begins with Himself, His Messenger, and then His Messenger's family.
The same thing can be said about the commandment of obedience. Allah the Exalted says: Believers, obey Allah, His Messenger, and your (qualified) leaders. (Holy Qur'an 4:59). In the previous Verse, Allah begins with Himself, His Messenger, and then His Messenger's family. The same thing occurs in the Verse of Wilayah. Allah says: Only Allah, His Messenger, and the true believers who are steadfast in prayer and pay alms while they kneel during prayer, are your guardians - leaders. (Holy Qur'an 5:55 In the previous Verse, Allah makes the leadership of the Holy Prophet's family and the obedience to the Holy Prophet connected to the obedient to Him. Likewise, His share as well as His Messenger's share of spoils of war connected to the shares of the Holy Prophet's family. All praise is due to Allah Who has given the Prophet's family the greatest grace.
As Allah refers to the classes to whom the alms should be given, He deems Himself, His Messenger, and the Holy Prophet's family far above them. He the Exalted says: Alms are only for the poor, the destitute, the tax collectors, those whose hearts are inclined (towards Islam), the slaves, those who cannot pay their debts, for the cause of Allah, and for those who have become needy on a journey. It is an obligation that Allah has decreed. Allah is All-knowing and All-wise. (Holy Qur'an 9:60).
You cannot find any indication to Allah, His messenger, and the Prophet's family with the above-mentioned classes. This is because Allah has deemed Himself, His Messenger, and the Messenger's family far above receiving the alms. Moreover, He has deemed unlawful for Mohammaed(S.A.W.) and his family to receive anything of the alms, because alms are only the dirt of people, and it is unlawful for the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) and his family to enjoy the dirt of people because they are purified against any dirt or filth. In fine, because Allah has purified and selected the Holy Prophet's family exclusively, He accepts for them only what He accepts for Himself and dislikes for them only what He dislikes for Himself.
The ninth verse of selection is Allah's saying: "Ask the people of the Reminder if you do not know.( Holy Qur'an 16:43) We -the Prophet's family-are the people of the Reminder.
"In this verse," spoke the scholars, "Allah refers to the Christians and the Jews.
Imam Reza(A.S.) answered: How is this acceptable? If is so, then Allah is asking us to follow their religion, and they can claim that their religion is better than Islam!
"O Abul-Hasan," said Al-Ma'mun, "Do you have an explanation opposing the scholars"?
Imam Reza(A.S.) spoke: The Reminder in the Verse is Allah's Messenger. We are his people. This is clear in the Book of Allah. See Allah's saying in Surs of At-Talaq: People of understanding and believers, have fear of Allah. Allah has certainly sent you a reminder - a Messenger who recites to you the illustrious revelations of Allah. (Holy Qur'an 65:10-1) Thus, the reminder is Allah's Messenger and we are his people.
The tenth Verse of selection is Holy Qur'an 4:23 (25).
Supposing the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) is alive, is it licit for him to marry my daughter, my grand-daughter, of my offspring? "No," answered they, "It is unlawful."
Imam Reza(A.S.) continued: Is it licit for him to marry the daughter of any of you?" "Yes," answered they, "It is lawful."
The Holy Imam(A.S.), then, said: This is sufficiently clear evidence that I am one of the Holy Prophet's family members while you are not. If you are the Holy Prophet's family, then it is unlawful for him to marry your daughters. It is unlawful for him to marry my daughter because I am one of his family members while you are members of his ummah. This is another distinction between the Holy Prophet's family and the ummah. The Holy Prophet's family is a part of him while the ummah members are not unless they are his family.
The eleventh Verse of selection is Allah's saying: A believing person from the people of the Pharaoh who concealed his faith said, "Would you kill a man just because he says Allah is my Lord? He has brought you illustious miracles from your Lord. If he speaks lies, it will only harm him, but if he speaks the Truth, some of his warnings may affect you. Allah does not guide a transgressing liar. (Holy Qur'an 40:28) That man was the maternal cousin of the Pharaoh; therefore, Allah relates him to the Pharaoh due to this relation, not religion. The same thing can be said about us. We are the Holy Prophet's because we are his family, Particularly, and followers of his religion, generally. This is another distinction between the Holy Prophet's family and the ummah.
The twelfth Verse of selection is Allah's saying. Instruct your family to pray and be steadfast in worship. (Holy Qur'an 20:132) In this Verse, Allah joins us with the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) in the same commandment. This is a distinction over the ummah. After the revelation of this Verse, the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) used to come near to the door of the house of Ali(A.S.) and Fatima(A.S.) five times a day for nine months. He was shouting: "The prayer! Allah's mercy be upon you."
Allah has not bestowed upon any of the prophets' progenies with such an honored virtue that He has given exclusively to us. This is another distinction between the Prophet's family and the ummah.
All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the worlds.
All peace be with Mohammed(S.A.W.), the Holy Prophet of Allah.
His Account of Imamate, and the Position of the Imam
Abdul-Aziz-bin-Muslim related: We were accomanying Imam Reza(A.S.) in Marw. Once, we were in the central mosque when people discussed the matter of imamate and referred to the great variance of people's opinions in this regard. I then visited my master Ar-Reza(A.S.) to inform him of people's discussion.
He then smiled and said: O Abdul-Aziz, people are ignorant and unaware of their religion. Almighty Allah did not made his Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) die before He had perfected the religion for him. He revealed to him the Holy Quran in which there is the explanation of everything that people may need completely. Allah the Majestic says: Nothing is left without a mention in the Book.( Holy Qur'an 6:38).
During the Farewell Pilgrimage, which was the last days of the Holy Prophet's lifetime, Allah revealed to him: On this day I have perfected your religion, completed My favors to you, and have chosen Islam as your religion. (Holy Qur'an 5:3).
The imamate is a part of the perfection of the religion. The Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) did not depart this world before he had manifested to his ummah the points of their religion, showed them the - right - courses that they should take, situated them on the right path, and assigned Ali(A.S.) as the leader and Imam for them. As a matter of fact, the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.) did not leave anything without thorough manifestation. He whoever denies the Book is converting to atheism.
Do they acknowledge the true standing of Imamate and its position in the ummah, before they choose for themselves?
Allah gave Abraham the prophet(A.S.) imamate as a third rank after prophecy and intimacy and as a virtue by which He conferred honor upon him -Abraham- and praised him. Allah says: When his Lord tested Abraham's faith, (by His words) and he satisfied the test, He said, "I am appointing you as the imam of mankind." Abraham the prophet (A.S.) was highly delighted for gaining this rank; therefore, he hoped it would be passed to his descendants. Abraham asked Allah, "Will this imamate also continue through my descendants?" The Lord replied, "The unjust do not have the right to exercise my authority.( Holy Qur'an 2:124) This Verse cancels the imamate of any unjust one until the Day of Resurrection, and dedicates it to the choice ones exclusively. Then Allah honors this imamate when He decides it be in the offspring of the immaculate choice ones. He says: We granted him - Abraham - Isaac and Jacob as a gift and helped both of them to become righteous people. We appointed them as imams to guide the people through Our command and sent them revelation to strive for good deeds, worship their Lord, and pay retax. Both of them were Our worshipping servants. (Holy Qur'an 21:73-4) The successive generations kept on receiving the imamate in inheritance in that order until it reached the Holy Prophet Mohammed(S.A.W.). In this regard, Allah says: The nearest people to Abraham among mankind, are those who followed him, this prophet (Muhammad(S.A.W.)) and the true believers.( Holy Qur'an 3:68) In this manner, the imamate became exclusive for them Then the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) gave it to Ali(A.S.) to be successive in his choice offspring upon whom Allah conferred knowledge and faith. This is indicated in Allah's saying. Those who have received knowledge and have faith will say, "By the decree of Allah, you have remained for the exact period which was mentioned in the book of Allah about the Day of Resurrection. This is the Day of Resurrection, but you did not know. (Holy Qur'an 30:56) This Verse shows the decree of Allah regarding the question of imamate that will persist in the Holy Prophet's progeny until the Day of Resurrection, since there will be no prophet after the Holy Prophet Mohammed(S.A.W.).
After all, how can those ignorant people choose for imamate out of their opinions?
Imamate is the rank of the prophets and the heritage of the prophet's successors.
Imamate is the representation of Allah the Majestic and His Messenger(S.A.W.), the position of Amirul Muminin Ali(A.S.), and the successionof Al-Hasan(A.S.) and Al-Hussein(A.S.)
The Imam is the head of the religious affairs, the system of the muslims, the goodness of the world, the stronghold of the believers.
The Imam is the rising principal and the noble branch of Islam.
The accomplishment of the prayers, zakat, fasting, hajj, jihad, the availability of spoils and alms, the execution of the doctrinal provisions and the rules, and the protections of the fronts and the borders -all these are achieved through the Imam.
The Imam legalizes whatever Allah deems legal, forbids whatever Allah deems illegal, executes the doctrinal provisions that Allah enacts, protects the religion of Allah, and calls to the path of Allah through wisdom, good advice, and strong evidence.
The Imam is as same as the shining sun whose light covers the whole world while it stands erect in the horizon and neither sights nor can hands catch it.
The Imam is the luminous full moon, the bright lamp, the rising light, the guiding star in tenebrous gloom, the guide to the right, and the savior from demise.
The Imam is the guiding fire on highlands, the heat to the seekers of warmth, and the rescuer from dangers. He whoever departs the Imam will surely perish.
The Imam is the raining clouds, the torrential downpour, the shady sky, the plain land, the abundant spring, the brook, and the garden.
The Imam is the lenient custodian, the humane father, the full brother, the like of the sympathetic mother to her baby, and the shelter of the servants.
The Imam is purified from sins, freed of defects, given knowledge exclusively, characterized with forbearance, the system of the religion, the stronghold of the believers, the punishment of the hypocrites, and the perdition of the disbelievers.
The Imam is the unique in his time. No one can catch up with him and no scholar can amount to him. There is no substitute for him and there are no like or match to him. The whole virtue is dedicated to him without seeking or acquisition. It is only the choice of the Favorer Endower Allah.
How is it then possible for any body to understand the reality and the quality of the Imam? How impossible this is! Minds are too astray, intellects are too lost, wits are too perplexed, the speakers are too mute, the poets are too unversed, the authors are too impotent, the eloquent are too wordless, and the scholars are too weak to describe a single feature or a single virtue of the Imam's features and virtues. As a consequence, they confessed of their shortcoming and inadequacy to do so. How is it then possible to describe of their shortcoming and inadequacy to do so. How is it then possible to describe him as a whole or portray his manners? How is this possible while the Imam is as far as stars from the reach of the debaters and the describers?
Do they think they can find imamate in anybody other than the Holy Prophet's family? Then are deceived by their opinions and they are indulging in the false hopes. They are surely climbing a rugged ascent and a slippery mount that will surely cause them to stumble to the rock bottom because they have intended to nominate an imam out of their opinions. How can they nominated an imam while the true Imam is permanently knowledgeable that ignorance never reaches him and a custodian that never betrays? He is the core of the prophecy whose lineage is too honorable to be criticized and no highborn individual can ever dare him.
The Imam's tribe is Quraish his clan is Hashim, his root is the Messenger of Allah(S.A.W.), the master of the celebrities, and he is the offspring of Abd-Manaf.
The Imam is that whose knowledge is increasing and whose forbearance is perfect. He is cognizant of policy and worthy of leadership. The obedience to him if obligatory. He is the executor of Allah's commandments and the adviser of Allah's servants.
Allah leads the prophets and their successors to success and the right, and gives them (a part of His stored) knowledge and wisdom exclusively so that they become the most knowledgeable of people. Allah the Majestic says: Is the one who guides to the Truth a proper guide or one who himself cannot find guidance unless he is guided (by others)? What is wrong with you that you judge (so unjustly)? (Holy Qur'an 10:35).
Relating the story of Saul, Allah says: Allah has chosen him as your ruler and has given him physical power and knowledge. Allah grants His authority to anyone whom He wants. (Holy Qur'an 2;247).
About David the prophet(A.S.), Allah says: David slew Goliath and Allah granted David the kingdom and wisdom and also taught him whatever He wanted. (Holy Qur'an 2:251).
Addressing to the Holy Prophet Mohammed(S.A.W.), Allah says: Allah has revealed the Book to you, has given you wisdom, and has taught you what you did not know. Certainly Allah's favor to you has been great. (Holy Qur'an 4:113).
About the Imams of the Prophet's family, progeny, and offspring, Allah says: Are they jealous of the favors that Allah has done to some people (the Imams)? We have given to the family of Abraham the Book, Wisdom, and a great Kingdom. Some have believed, others have disbelieved and tried to prevent people from believing. For these people, only the intense fire of hell is a sufficient punishment. (Holy Qur'an 4:54-5).
When Allah selects someone (the Imam) for managing the affairs of His servants, He grants him the inclination to do so, fills in his heart with springs of wisdom, and bestows upon him with fluency. Hence, he will have the ability to answer any question and will say nothing but the truth. The Imam is therefore granted successfulness, right guidance, and advocacy and will be saved from error and flaw.
He is given such characteristics so that he will be an argument against the creatures and a witness on the servants (of Allah). Can they then ensure such characters for the one they choose as imam out of their opinions?