Home Imam Reza Discourses Imam Reza's Wording on Selection
  Services
   About Us
   Islamic Sites
   Special Occasions
   Audio Channel
   Weather (Mashhad)
   Islamic World News Sites
   Yellow Pages (Mashhad)
   Kids
   Souvenir Album
  Search


Imam Reza's 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 offspring, 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 of 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 except (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 orphanage 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 Mohammed (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 illustrious 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.

Copyright 1998 - 2022 Imam Reza (A.S.) Network, All rights reserved.