In the Name of Allah the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful

Imamology, Lesson 13: The Meaning of the Imam’s Guidance and the Conditions that One Guiding to Allah Should Have

Collected Works of The Muslim Shiite Scholar and Thinker: Allāma Hājj Sayyid Muhammad Husayn Husaynī Tihrānī


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Lesson Thirteen: The Meaning of the Imam’s Guidance and the Conditions that One Guiding to Allah Should Have

In the Name of Allah, the most Compassionate, the most Merciful

And bless be upon Muhammad and his pure Household, and may Allah's curse be on his enemies from now until the Day of Resurrection! And there is no power or strength except for the Lofty Glorious Allah.


The Wise Allah has stated in His Glorious Book:


أَفَمَن يَهْدِي إِلَى الْحَقِّ أَحَقُّ أَن يُتَّبَعَ أَمَّن لاَّ يَهِدِّي إِلاَّ أَن يُهْدَى فَمَا لَكُمْ كَيْفَ تَحْكُمُونَ [1]


‘…so is someone who guides to the Truth worthier to be followed or someone who does not guide unless he himself is guided? What is the matter with you? How do you judge then? (Qur’an: 10/35).’

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What is the purpose of guiding to the Truth

In the previous part, we discussed on this Verse in detail, and we came to this point that the guidance of a guide to the Truth must be spontaneously – not relying on anyone else. He who has tendency to disbelief or sin he has been guided towards devil; he cannot be an Imam and cannot guide the people. Now, there are some points to be mentioned:

First of all, the meaning of the ‘Truth’ in this Verse is the exact meaning of it, but not that frequently is used by the common. As it is seen, the right guidance is related to one whose speech is right – either he believes it or not believes; or either he carries it out or not; but what about if he does not really believe and he has been guided to somewhere else?

None of these are the guidance to the Truth, they are just commonly called the guidance; the guidance to the ‘Truth’ is only for Allah and the well guided to Him is – without interfering anyone or anything to it.

And the second meaning of the ‘Truth’ in this Verse is: ‘joining to the Ideal Deity not only showing the way to Allah; it is obvious that everyone can introduce the way – either he is an Imam or a common person. Whoever simply guides may be guided or not, or even he maybe the disbeliever, in any case, he can show the way; but he can never ever join a man to the ideal Deity – that is, only the well guided can do it.

The third, the sense of ‘someone who does not guide unless he himself is guided’ is ‘a person who has not been guided’, this means ‘he has not been guided at all or has been guided toward something else.

There is a difference between saying ‘your strike surprised me’, ‘I was surprised that you would strike me’; in the first sentence the act of ‘the strike’ is fulfilled, while in the second sentence ‘I would be surprised’ by the act of strike. Concerning this subject, Sheikh Abdul Ghahir has good explanation in the “The Reasons of the Surprises”.

Therefore, as the phrase ‘except that he guided’ shows that he is not guided yet, but it says he may be guided by someone in the future, so it proves that ‘guidance’ is by someone else – while if he does not deserve it, he will not be guided.

Thus, as it is seen, ‘does not guide’ means: he has been guided by his own – either he has not been guided or has been guided by someone else.

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The Imam must be guided to the Truth, and there three conditions in that

On the whole, the Imam is someone who has originally been guided to the Truth, it means: he is not of those categories. Therefore, the Imam is one who is immune from the perdition and sins, that is, he must not mike mistakes in receiving the Divine inspirations and whatever he receives must be reflected in his heart, and then, without temptation, to alter or interpret he must save them and by that means to guide the people to the straight path. In the meantime, he must not have tendency to the sins and offences; it is clearly explained in this Verse:


وَجَعَلْنَاهُمْ أَئِمَّةً يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْهِمْ فِعْلَ الْخَيْرَاتِ [2]

‘…and We appointed them Imams who guided [the people] by Our command, and We inspired them to perform good deeds, (Qur’an: 21/73).’


And it is clearly mentioned within the next Verse when Abraham asks the status of Imamate for his of spring, He states:


لاَ يَنَالُ عَهْدِي الظَّالِمِينَ [3]

“Never does My covenant reach the wrongdoers, (Qur’an: 2/124).”


It means: My covenant does not reach those who have done wrong; even if that wrong is too little; in other words, My covenant reaches one who is absolutely pure and chaste.

The Imam is one who has not committed a single sin all through his life, and whoever has committed a tiny bit of sin in his life, or has oppressed one, or has taken partners, then he has repented and his sins have been wiped out, still he cannot be the Imam.

When commenting this holy verse, the Highness Allama Tabatabaee says, ‘When some of our professors were asked about the relation of this verse with the chastity of the Imams they answered: “According to the logical division, people are in four groups.

Firstly, those who are aggressive all through their lives,

Secondly, those who are pure and free from sins and never are aggressive,

Thirdly, those who have been oppressive in the early part of their lives but they repent at the end of their lives, and Allah’s guidance reaches them;

But the fourth, those who have been pure and chaste in the first part of their lives but, however, have become criminal in the end.

The status of the Holiness Abraham is above that to ask Allah for the first or the forth places of the Imamate, such proposal has not been seen by that Holiness to ask the status of the Imamate for someone who has committed, or may commit sins through his life, or even at the end of his life. Therefore, there remain two groups for that Holiness to ask for: one who has been pure and chaste all through his life, or someone who has been pure and cleansed at the end of his life.

Allah sates: “From these two groups, I will not honour My covenant to those who are oppressive; so it is clear that those who have committed sins in the earlier part of their lives – even Allah has forgiven them their sins and His guidance has reached them, still the effect of sins are with them. Thus, as the Imamate is not given to them, then, there remains only one group, it is they who, during their life time has kept away from committing sins – so this is the real meaning of chastity. [4] & [5]

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Seven Important Questions about the Imamat

So far, whatever we have discussed on the Verses of the Qur’an, we have extract seven questions from the main questions of the Imamate, which Shiite has strong belief on them and insists in their authenticity – though the Sunnite’s opinions differ.

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The first question: Imamate cannot be chosen

First of all, Imamate cannot be chosen, it is fictitious, it has been created by Allah and through His Messenger, or the prior Imam, or with the clear miracles of the Imam it becomes evidence to the people. As we earlier mentioned it, Allah has introduced this position as the fictitious in these Verses, as He states:


قَالَ إِنِّي جَاعِلُكَ لِلنَّاسِ إِمَامًا [6]

‘…I have appointed you as a spiritual leader for the people, '(Qur’an: 2/124).


 وَجَعَلْنَا مِنْهُمْ أَئِمَّةً يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا لَمَّا صَبَرُوا [7]

 ‘… and We appointed from among them some Leaders to guide (people) at Our command, because they acted patiently and convinced about Our signs, '(Qur’an: 32/24).’


وَجَعَلْنَاهُمْ أَئِمَّةً يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْهِمْ فِعْلَ الْخَيْرَاتِ [8]

 ‘…also We appointed them Leaders who guided [the people] by Our command, and We inspired them to perform good deeds'(Qur’an: 21/73).’


In all theses Verses, the position of the Imam, are clearly assigned.

Secondly, the Imamate is the Divine power put in the Imam’s soul who, by means of that, dominates everything; as it is stated in the in this phrasal verse: ‘’… they guide with Our Command’.  Whoever posses this power is the Imam, and he who lacks it is not Imam.

Choice has no effect in this field, not mentioning that: as people are not aware of the celestial and the status of the chastity, they cannot know the Imam, therefore, their choice is not right, but if we suppose that all people are aware of the essence of the celestial, Allah gives them such a light that to be able to distinguish the status of the chastity. As we already said, the Imamate is the Divine Kingdom and the Holy power in the soul of the Imam – but not exists outside. It has no meaning to say that human should choose the external thing; there is the external being but does not come to existing by the human’s choice.

Is it right to say that it is we who choose the practice of jurisprudence of a learned who is expert in the essence of commands; or we assign the power and the strength of a champion who has gained fame and proud? Or to speak about one who has memorized the holy Qur’an: to say that it is we who have chosen this memory for him? It is absolutely incorrect.

The option is about the reliability affairs that its circulation is with the validity and the option, with the option which becomes to existence and with the lack of option it is destroyed; however, concerning the fact affairs which existed before the stage of the choice and still they are existing, no option is needed.

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The second question: surely the Imam must be innocent

The second question is that the Imam must absolutely be innocent through the chastity of Allah, the Honourable and Exalted; in this regard, we have drawn some phrases from the Verses:


لا ينال عهدي الظّالِمين

‘… My covenant does not reach the wrongdoers, and:

يهدون بِامرِنا

‘… they guide by Our command, and:

اوحينا اِليهم فعل الخيرات

 ‘…We inspired them to perform good deeds.’


It became clear that as the Imam has transmitted the entire stages of the desires and connected the Holiness Being, consequently, without spirit of lasciviousness, the will of Allah has surrounded his being – his actions are governed by the inspiration of Allah; thus, such an Imam is innocent and free from all soul desires and this is the real meaning of chastity. Then, numerous Verses, such as:


فَإِنَّهُ يَسْلُكُ مِن بَيْنِ يَدَيْهِ وَمِنْ خَلْفِهِ رَصَدًا [9]

‘…He makes a band of watching guards to escort before and behind him, (Qur’an: 72/27).’


Clearly explain that the Imams are innocent and guarded by Allah.

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The third question: the Imam must be confirmed by Allah

The third question is that the Imam must absolutely been confirmed by Allah and his knowledge and understanding to be inspired to him; and that Allah to be responsible to his life and affairs. This is well understood by these Verses: ‘…and We inspired them to perform good deeds, (Qur’an: 21/73),’

أَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْهِمْ فِعْلَ الْخَيْرَاتِ [10]

and‘…because they acted patiently and convinced about Our signs, (Qur’an: 32/24),’

لَمَّا صَبَرُوا وَكَانُوا بِآيَاتِنَا يُوقِنُونَ

and also

يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنا [11]

 ‘… they guide by Our commands.

As the necessity of the Imamate is reaching at the state of certainty, and as it was already mentioned that the state of the certainty can only be achieved by discovering the Truth, thus, the very discovering the Truth and the guidance of Allah always confirms him.

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The fourth question: the earth is never bare of the proof

The fourth question is that the earth and the entire beings has an Imam all the time, and the earth is never bare of Allah’s proof; this subject is declared in the Verse:

يَوْمَ نَدْعُو كُلَّ أُنَاسٍ بِإِمَامِهِمْ [12]

‘… [Remember] the Day when We shall call forth all mankind along with their Imam, (Qur’an: 17/71).’

As Allah, on the Day of Resurrection, calls every person with his own Imam, no one exists in the world unless he has an Imam to guide him. It has been time and again narrated that even there exists only two persons on the earth one of them is certainly an Imam to the next one.

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The fifth question: The Imam’s dominating knowledge upon the nation

The fifth question is that the Imam over dominates the actions, speeches and the behaviors of all the creatures of Allah, that is, nothing is hidden from the Imam. All the foregoing Verses prove this ; as the Imam dominates the souls and the natures of the creatures, it is obvious that he knows every little bits of things is done – it is like the natural beings which are manifest in the sight of a sighted person, but the same things are hidden for a blind.

To the people who have not yet reached to the stage of the Imamate but, due to their piety, worshipping and fighting against their cardinal desires, they have got to know the natures of some activities, actions and words; however, they do not reach the stage of the perfection. But this amount of brightness brings clarity in their hearts, which is not seen in other people – this brightness is so sharp and strong in the heart of the Imam that he comprehend everything and nothing is hidden from his sight.

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The sixth question: the knowledge of the Imam to see the needs of the creatures

The sixth question is that the Imam is aware of the needs of the people’s worldly and the Hereafter’s affairs, it is because the Imam guides the souls to the Truth and leads them to the perfection, so how does it come to be unaware of their needs? This is stated in the Qur’an as: ‘… they guide by Our Command; and the priority of the status of the Imam to the prophet is quite clear in the Verse Allah states to His friend, Abraham.

Above all, as the words and the actions of the Imam are based on reality and the truth, and he has attained such position that his commands and prohibitions are straight from Allah Himself therefore, his actions are revealed to him and they are the real ‘Revelations’. Therefore, as the needs of the slaves are not hidden from Allah, nor are they hidden from the Imams who are the perfect canals of His blessings to the entire beings – this is quite clear that the Imam’s knowledge is the very Knowledge of Allah and there is no difference between them.

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The seventh question: the superiority of the Imam to the mankind in the sensual accomplishment

The seventh question is that in sensual accomplishment the Imam is above all beings; it is impossible for any individual to be better than the Imam in spiritual and good deeds and morale, because the way to Allah is through the spiritual soul and good attributes. And as in this ground the Imam is better than the others so he guides them to the Truth. Therefore, according to this fact, if there are only two persons, one of them having this quality, can act as the Imam; for one who is spiritually good and broad minded can lead one who is blind to the world – in this case it is only the Imam.

Contrary to this, a weak person cannot direct or lead a strong one; these seven questions are the basic discussion of the Imamate, and the other questions are secondary.

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The superiority of the Commander of the believers in spiritual advantages

There is no hesitation or doubt about the superiority of Ali ibn Tālib, the Commander of the believers among the entire being except the Holiness seal of the prophets, this fact is agreed by all friends and enemies. It is due to the spiritual manifestations of that Holiness during the 23years of the prophet-hood of the Messenger of Allah and 30 years after him that he has proved by his knowledge, and solving the hard problems, and rightfully judging, his generosity, and taking shelter in the Shrine of Allah, and being solved in the attractions of Allah, and comprehending the Truth and the spiritual knowledge, and exceeding in belief, immigration and jihad.

Apart from these, the statements of the Messenger of Allah which have been narrated about the Holiness are many, such as:

أَنْتَ مِنِّي بِمَنْزِلَةِ هَارُونَ مِنْ مُوسَي،  اِنّ عليّاً وزيري، و وصيّي، و وارثي، و اخي في الدّنيا و الآخِرة، و خليفتي مِن بعدي، و وليّ كلّ مؤمِن مِن بعدي، و اِنّ عليّاً امير المؤمِنين، و سيّد المسلِمين و يعسوب المؤمِنين، و قاءـد الغرِّ المحجّلين، و هو الصّدّيق الاكبر، و الفاروق الاكبر، و عالِم هذهِ الامّةِ، و ذو قرنِها 

‘You are to me as Aaron to Moses, indeed Ali is my Minister, Guardian and the Heir, he is my brother in the world and in the Hereafter, and he is my Caliph after me, and he is the Master of every believer after me, and indeed he if the Commander of the believers, he is the Master of the Muslims and the believers, and he is the leader of the dignified, and he is the greatest trustworthy, so is he the greatest distinguisher of right from the falsehood, and he is the scholar for this nation and brings them together.’

And apart from this narration:

أنا مدينة العِلمِ و عليٌّ بابها

‘I am the city of knowledge and Ali is its gate’, there are many narrations about his knowledge; all these narrations prove that the Holiness, Ali, was the co-soul of the Messenger of Allah.

And some narrations state that the Holiness possessed specified superiorities and each one proves his superiority to the people. And besides, there are many narrations by the Shiite and the Household, as well as the public concerning the Holiness that he was not only superior to mankind but the prophets and the messengers. Concerning this subject, the Messenger of Allah has stated on his superiorities and innocence.

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Ali is the best of the mankind and whoever rejects him is a disbeliever

Sheikh Hafiz Solomon Bin Ibrahim Qandouzi Hanafi narrates from the book ‘Mawaddat Al-Qurba’, written by Sayyid Ali Shafiee that: Ata says:

قال: سـلت عاءِـشه عن عليّه قلت: ذالِك خير البشرِ لا يشكّ فيهِ إلّا كافر [13]

‘I asked Aisha about Ali and she said that he was the best of the men she knew and no one would doubt it except the disbelievers.’

 It is narrated about the Commander of the believers upon him be peace that the Messenger of Allah told him:

يا عليّ، أنت خير البشرِ، ما يشكّ فيهِ إلّا كافر [14]

‘O Ali, you are the best of the mankind; no one doubts it except the disbeliever.’

And it is narrated by Hozaifa that it was said:

انّه قال: عليٌّ خير البشرِ و من أبي فقد كفر [15]

‘Ali is the best man and whoever rejects him is the disbeliever.’

And it is narrated by Jabir Bin Abdullah Ansari that the Messenger of Allah said:

على خير البشر، من شك فيه فقد كفر [16]

 ‘Ali is the best man and whoever rejects him has covered the truth and he is the disbeliever.’

And they have narrated of Umm Hani, the daughter of the Hiness Abu Talb, who s the sister of the Commander of the believers, who has said the Messenger of Allah stated:

أفضل البرِيّةِ عِند اللهِ من نام في قبرِهِ، و لم يشكّ في عليٍّ و ذرّيّته أنّهم خير البريّه [17]

 ‘In Allah’s sight, the best man is one who has no doubt about Ali and his of spring until he dies and is put in his grave.

And Imam Baqir Muhammad Bin Ali has narrated of his grandfathers that they had said:

رسول الله صلّي الله عليهِ و آلِه قال: خيرها، و آتقاها، و آفضلها، و آقربها اِلي الجنّةِ آقربها مِنّي و لا آتقي و لا آقرب اِليّ مِن عليّ بن أبيطالبٍ [18]

‘Some people asked the Messenger Bless be to him and his Descendants who the best of the mankind were. The Highness stated: ‘The best of them, the most pious of them, and the virtues of them and the nearest one to Paradise is one who is nearest to me – and no one is the most pious and nearest to me than Ali Bin Abī Tālib.’

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The Narrations of the Ascension Denote the Guardianship of the Commander of the Believers

And it has been narrated by the Commander of the believers that the Messenger of Allah Bless be to him and his Descendants said:

إِنِّي رَأَيْتُ اسْمَكَ مَقْرُوناً بِاسْمِ في أربعةِ مواطِن، فلَمَّا بَلَغْتُ بَيْتَ الْمَقْدِسِ فِي مِعْرَاجِي إِلَى السَّمَاءِ وَجَدْتُ عَلَى صَخْرَتِهَا لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللَّهُ مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ أَيَّدْتُهُ بِعلي ِوَزِيرِهِ، و لَمَّا انْتَهَيْتُ إِلَى سِدْرَةِ الْمُنْتَهَى وَجَدْتُ عَلَيْهَا: إِنِّي أَنَا اللَّهُ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنَا وَحْدِي مُحَمَّدٌ صَفْوَتِي مِنْ خَلْقِي أَيَّدْتُهُ عليّ بِوَزِيرِهِ وَ نَصَرْتُهُ بِهِ، و لمّا انْتَهَيْتُ إِلَى عَرْشِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ، وَجَدْتُ عَلَى قوامّهّ: لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللَّهُ مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ اِلّا أنا، أ مُحَمَّدٌ حبيبي مِنْ خَلْقِي، أَيَّدْتُهُ بِعليٍّ وَزِيرِهِ، وَ نَصَرْتُهُ بِهِ فلمّا وصلت الجنّةوجدت مكتوباً علي بابِ الجنّةِ: لا اِله اِلّا أنا، و محمّدٌ حبيبي مِن خلفي، أيّدته بعليٍّ وزيرِهِ، ونصرته بِهِ [19]

 ‘O Ali, in four stages, I gathered that your name was connected to my name:

Once, when they were ascending me to Heaven, and I reached the Holy Territory, I noticed that it was carved on a rock, ‘There is no deity except Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah; I confirmed him through Ali who is his Minister.’      

 And when I reached ‘the Sedrat Al-Montaha’ I saw these words: ‘There is no Deity but Me, Alone, Muhammad is the chosen one among My creatures; I confirmed him through Ali, his Minister – I assisted him through Ali.’

When I reached the firmament of Allah, the Lord of all being, I noticed that it was written on its columns: ‘I am Allah, there is no Deity except Me, Muhammad is My beloved, I chose him from among My creatures through Ali, his Minister, and I assisted him through Ali.’

Then, when I reached Paradise, it was written on its gate: ‘There is no Deity except Me, Muhammad is my beloved, I chose him from among My creatures through Ali, his Minister, and I assisted him through Ali.’

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The Statement of Gabriel, in the complexion of Dahiy‘ya, about the Guardianship

Harazmi Al-Moaiied [20] Mowaffaq Bin Ahmad through his chain documents narrates from his uncle, Saeed Bin Jabir that Ibn Abbas said: ‘The Messenger of Allah was at his home early morning before anyone came to him, Ali ibn Abī Tālib walked in and entered the house and saw that the Messenger of Allah was sleeping in the courtyard laying his head on the laps of Dahiy‘ya Bin halifa Kalbi (Dahiy‘ya Bin Khalifa Kalbi was a good-looking man in Medina and whenever Gabriel came to the Messenger of Allah he appeared in the complexion of Dahiy‘ya Bin halifa Kalbi).’ The Commander of the believers said: ‘Peace be upon you, o Dahiy‘ya! How is the Messenger of Allah?’

Dahiy‘ya answered: ‘O brother, the Messenger of Allah is alright.’

The Holiness Commander of the believers prayed for him and said:

جزاك الله عنّا خيراً أهل البيتِ

‘May Allah’s bless be on you, you are the best friend of us, the Household; o Dahiy‘ya, for your goodness to us, the Household, may Allah give you good rewards.’

Dahiy‘ya, said:

أنت أمير المؤمِنين، و قاءـِد الْمُحَجَّلِينَ، وَ سَيِّدُ وُلْدِ آدَمَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ، مَا خَلَا النَّبِيِّينَ وَ الْمُرْسَلِينَ، لِوَاءُ الْحَمْدِ بِيَدِكَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ، تَزِفُّ أَنْتَ وَ شِيعَتُكَ مَعَ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ حِزْبِهِ إِلَى الْجِنَانِ زفاً زفاً، قَدْ أَفْلَحَ مَنْ توَالَاكَ وَ خَسِرَ مَنْ تخَلَّاكَ بِحُبِّ مُحَمَّدٍ حَبُّوكَ، وَ مبُغَضُوكَ لنتَنَالُهُمْ شَفَاعَةُ مُحَمَّدٍ

‘I love you so much, and concerning you, I have great deal of praises that I want to reveal them to you. You are the Commander of the believers! You are the Leader of the radiant faces in Paradise, and you are the Master of the people and even the messengers in Resurrection, and the Banner of the ‘Praise’ is in your hand on the Day of Resurrection.

‘As the bride is led to the bridal chamber you will be taken to Paradise along with your followers and also Muhammad with his disciples. Victory and bless is for one who follows you, and whoever does not follow you will get lost. Therefore, through Muhammad’s love they will love you and Muhammad’s intercession does reach one who hates you.’

Then, Dahiy‘ya said, O Ali, o you who is chosen by Allah, come closer to me! The Commander of the believers got closer to him and Dahiy‘ya lifted the Messenger’s head from his laps and let Ali put his head on his laps instead.

In the mean time, the Messenger of Allah asked: ‘O Ali what was going on?’

The Commander of the believers said, ‘O Messenger of Allah, it was this,’ he informed him all what happened between him and Dahiy‘ya.

The Messenger of Allah said: ‘O Ali, he was not Dahiy‘ya, he was Gabriel, he called you with the very name Allah has called you; it is he who sets your affection in the hearts of the believers and your fright in the disbelievers’ hearts.’ [21]

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The Certainty of the Seven Questions of the Imamate about the Commander of the Believers

There are great many of narrations from the Messenger of Allah concerning the superiority of the Commander of the believers and his being the Master upon the children of Adam. However, we now refer to few of those narrations. According to the seven questions already mentioned, the position of the Imamate is specified only for the Holiness Ali, who strongly invited the people to Allah and, in this way, there were not any slackness, doubts or ignorance in his words and actions.

As Imam dominates the kingdom of heaven he never makes mistakes, and as his acts are the true actions he never doubts or wonders, he never ever regrets what he has done: it is because Allah does not wonder or regret in His affairs.

In fact, those who regret and are remorseful, it is because of their ignorance about what they are doing; they take an unpleasant affair as the pleasant and without giving a second thought to it, they start doing it. Then, later on when they notice their mistakes they regret it and become remorseful.

A rightful person never regrets, it has not be seen an Imam to be regretful of his acts, which is the sign of his carefulness in doing things. Above all, in every task, the Imam assigns every individual’s duty; he does not delay or postpone it for the time to come. He does not wait so that the things become clear to him, because everything is as clear as the crystal to him and he can respond it right away.

Omar was unable to answer many simple common religious questions when he was asked. On the other hand, they would ask Ali, the Commander of the believers, great many questions that the smartest mathematicians had to calculate them through their formula for hours. The Highness would answer them on the spot; but was it because of the electrical mind of him?                     

Even it takes seconds for the electrical devices to calculate it but the Highness would answer them immediately; as if the answers to the questions were as bright as the day for him.

The Highness would answer many judicial questions on the spot, which each of them needed the expert calculators to do.

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The Regret of Abu Bakr about the Caliphate

For several times, Abu Bakr was regretted of his Caliphate and constantly said:

اقيلوني، اقيلوني ولست بِخيركم [22]

‘Take the burden of the Caliphate off from my shoulders; I am not the right person among you.’

His answer is: ‘If the seizure of the Caliphate was by the Command of Allah, then, why are you trying to leave it? And if was not by the Command of then, why did you seize it?’

It is here that he is tangled; he is neither able to carry it on nor is he pleased to leave it to the main owner; as it is stated:

أَوْ كَظُلُمَاتٍ فِي بَحْرٍ لُّجِّيٍّ يَغْشَاهُ مَوْجٌ مِّن فَوْقِهِ مَوْجٌ مِّن فَوْقِهِ سَحَابٌ ظُلُمَاتٌ بَعْضُهَا فَوْقَ بَعْضٍ إِذَا أَخْرَجَ يَدَهُ لَمْ يَكَدْ يَرَاهَا وَمَن لَّمْ يَجْعَلِ اللَّهُ لَهُ نُورًا فَمَا لَهُ مِن نُّورٍ [23]

‘…or [their deeds] are like shadows on the vast deep sea; one wave covers up another wave, over which there are clouds; layers of darkness, one above the other! When they put forth their hands, they can scarcely see it. Thus, to whomsoever Allah does not grant light, he has no light, (Qur’an: 24/40).’

After Abu Bakr paying homage in Saqifa, the next day, he ascended the pulpit of the Messenger in his mosque, and during his sermon, he said:

أيّها النّاس، فاِنّي قد ولّيت عليكم، و لست بِخيركم، فاِن احسنت فاعينوني، واِن اسات فقوِّموني [24]... اطيعوني ما اطعت الله، و اِذا عصيت الله وسوله، فلا طاعة لي عليكم. [25]

‘O people, now I have taken your guardianship and authority in my hand, and I am the best among you; so if you see that I am carrying my duty in the best way, do help me, but if I make mistakes do correct me.’

Tabari says: ‘when Abu Bakr started lecturing among the people, he said:

أيها الناس إنما أنا مثلكم و إني لا أدري لعلكم ستكلفونني ما كان رسول الله صلّي الله عليهِ و آلِه و سلّم يطيق، إن الله اصطفى محمداً على العالمين، و عصمه من الآفات، و إنما أنا متبع، و لست بمتبوع، فإن استقمت فاتبعوني و إن زغت فقوّموني، وكذالِك يقول: و إن لي شيطانا يعتريني فإذا اتاني فاجتنبوني.[26]

 ‘O people, I am similar to you, perhaps you ask me some difficult questions that I cannot answer them – the questions that only the Messenger of Allah could tolerate them. Allah chose Muhammad for the whole people of the world and He saved him against all calamities; but I am the obedience of the religion and I have brought nothing with me. If in this position, I carry out my duties in proper way, do follow me, but if I am deviated, you direct me.’

He carried on saying: ‘Surely there is a devil about me who misleads me, you must keep away from me when he comes to me.’[27] It was clear that he was frightful in when he was declaring it.

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Five Objections about Abu Bakr’s Sermon

The First Objection

First of all, he says: ‘I am not the best among you.’ Therefore, he must be asked: ‘Then, why did you accept the Caliphate, why did you not leave this important position to the right and superior Master, the Commander of the believers? Why did you want to become the most learned Imam? How you were satisfied to make the Commander of the believers, the main treasure of Allah’s Knowledge and the soul of the Messenger follow you! How did you want to make him swear allegiance for your commands and prohibitions without any conditions? And by which knowledge or morale attitudes you wanted to lead the believers to the perfection, and which kingdom of heaven you were dominating?’

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The Second Objection

Secondly you say: ‘If I do well, you follow me, but if I make mistakes do correct me!’ Therefore, you have left the standard of your ruling with us, so we are the Imam of you not you the Imam for us!

Besides, how can we make out bad from good? If we distinguish it by ourselves then we need no Imam; and if a rightful Imam tells us what to do, then we are obliged to follow him, and you too have to surrender to his command.  

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The Third Objection

Thirdly you say: ‘You may ask me such a thing that I cannot tolerate to carry out, only the Messenger could bear it.’

It is quite right, such problems will occur, but who let you sit in the place of the Messenger so that not to be able to answer our questions? Did you not hear from the Messenger of Allah time and again say:

عليٌّ يقضي ديني،

“Ali is going to repay my debt and he is responsible for the Guardianship.” You yourself have narrated with the Messenger of Allah saying:

عليٌّ مع الحقّ والحقّ مع عليّ

 “Ali is from the Truth and the Truth is with Ali! “Did you not congratulate the Commander of the believers on the Day of Ghadir Khom?”

If you cannot tolerate the burden of Guardianship then, why you sat in the place of the Messenger; and stole the certain rightful position of the Guardianship!’

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The Fourth Objection

Fourthly you say: “Obey me as long as I am obeying Allah and the Messenger of Allah, then, if you see that I reject them you too reject me.’

Therefore, you are similar to us, but are not our master, so why should we obey you, now you obey us! Which of the Divine rules obliges us to obey you?’

Apart from that, in our religion, we need a leader and the instructor, through him, we must learn how to pray Allah and obey His Messenger, but how do we know this ruling of you is obedience or sins! Only an instructor of the Qur’an who knows Allah and His Messenger well, and is expert in the rules of Islam can distinguish good actions of us from the bad. Moreover, how can we correct you when you are sinning? You are what you are, you cannot be corrected. You are not content to leave the Caliphate, you are acting against Allah and His Messenger’s will; no matter how much the people try to correct you but you are resisting on it – this usurpation of the Caliphate is the biggest deviation of yours.

Did Ali, the Commander of the believers, not take you to task and did he not reproach you at the very moment the corpse of the Messenger of Allah was still unburied by his graveside; did he not lectured you concerning his superiorities in the mosque? Did the Highnesses Seddiqa not mention your deviation in her sermon? Didn’t she say:

يا ابا بكرٍما اسرع ما أغررتم علي أهلِ بيتِ رسولِ اللهِ؟

“O Abu Bakr, do not haste usurping that which is for the Household!” Did the great followers, and the Bani Hashim, who rejected paying homage, not point at your mistakes? Then, did you not correct yourself?

They did not insist in their words, but if they did, then, there would be bloodshed and the main object would come to nothing. Did Othman openly reject the command of the Messenger of Allah? Why did he not listen to the Muslims when they reproached him? Why did he insist in his demand?’

The Muslims told him: ‘Either leave the position of the Caliphate or carry out on the rules and traditions of the Messenger of Allah. He accepted neither and insisted in his way, and in the mean time, he invited Mua‘wiyah and the army of Sham to help him fight against the Muslims.

The Muslims could not correct the oppressive Caliphs who were ruling, who can correct one who has the power in his hand and he is not ready to give it back to the main owner?

Was Mua‘wiyah corrected? Were the Bani Omayyad’s Caliphs and Bani Alas’ Caliphs corrected?’

Anyone who wanted to warn them, or even advise them, they sent him to death; they were of these rejecters who, in the daylight, killed the son of the Messenger of Allah and his family between two rivers.

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The Fifth Objection

Abu Bakr, be careful what you are mentioning in these sermons of yours! By these words of yours, you are giving way to all oppressive Caliphs. Then, you are saying: ‘I have a Devil who comes to me, if he comes, repel him from me!’

I wish you had not mentioned this word! The Leader who believes the Devil is by his side and guiding man instead of him, he is no more a Leader, he is the Devil himself.

The Imam of the believers has killed the Devil and he has said:

اعزبي عنّي يا دنيا، قد طلّقتكِ ثلاثاً

 ‘O world, leave me on my own, I have divorced you thrice.’ As strong as a mountain he has declared it. And he has said: ‘O mankind, come to me, I am the Guardian of Allah, I am the most sincere worshipper of Allah. The Verse for the purification has been sent down for us, I am right in the position of the chastity, I have the position of ‘Ask me whatever you want before losing me’, I am the gate of knowledge, I am the bearer of the heavy burden of the Messenger-hood and the debt payer of the Messenger of Allah, I am the dominator of the kingdom of heaven and the truth of all things – and thousands of facts and the truths are with me.’

‘I am the real soul of the Messenger of Allah; I am the Master of every man and woman Muslims, I am the guardian, the Minister and the heir of the secrets of the Messenger.’

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The Regret of Abu Bakr about Nine Things at His Death

Masoodi says:  

و لمّا أحتضر ابو بكرٍ قال: ما آسَى علي شيءيٍ إِلَّا عَلَى ثَلَاثٍ فَعَلْتُهَا ، وَ وَدِدْتُ أَنِّي تَرَكْتُهَا، وَ ثَلَاثٍ تَرَكْتُهَا وَدِدْتُ أَنِّي فَعَلْتُهَا، وَ ثَلَاثٍ وَدِدْتُ أَنِّي سَأَلْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَ آلِهِ عنها، فأَمَّا الثّلاث الَّتِي وَدِدْتُ أَنِّي تَرَكْتُهَا، فَوَدِدْتُ أَنِّي لَمْ أَكُنْ فتّشتُ بَيْتَ فَاطِمَةَ، و ذكر في ذالِك كلاماً كثيرا.[28]

‘When Abu Bakr death approached and he was at the point of death, he said: “I regret nothing  more than three things I have done, I wish I had not done so; and I regret about three things which I did not do but I wish I had dome them. And I liked to ask three things from the Messenger of Allah but I did not ask. Now, one of those three things which I did but I wish I had not done it is that I investigated Zahra’s home which I wish I had not explored it;’ he spoke a lot concerning this.

Apart from Masoodi, Tabari, in his history book, and ibn Qatiba in ‘Al-Imamate and As-seyasa’, and ibn Abd Rabah in the ‘Aqd Al-farid’ have written about this narration. [29]

And concerning this subject, Allahma Amini, in Al-Ghadir, in the part of ‘Al-Amwal’ page 131 has written: the documents of this narration are right, and all the narrators are rightful and genuine, and four of them are the common famous narrators of the ‘six-tradition-books’. [30]

And one of the things that Abu Bakr regrets more about is killing Faja Salami – burning him to ashes. As it is put by the Ibn Athir Jazari in “The Completion if the History”, once Ayaz bin Abd yaleil Salami went to Abu Bakr and said: “Let me have arms and fight those who rejected the religion. Abu Bakr amed him and assigned a certain duty for him. However, he did opposite that which Abu bakr had ordered him and fought the Muslims instead. Abu Bakr sent Tarifa bin Hajiz to capture him and bring him to Abu Bakr, and he did. Abu Bakr ordered his men to tied up his hands and feet and cast him into the fire they had made about the outskirt of the mosque of the town.
Close to his death, Abu Bakr said: ‘When they brought him to me, I wish I had not burn him, but I would kill him with an iron bar or else, I would free him.’

Some of the contemporaries such as: Farid and Judai in the Encyclopedia and Amin Mesri in his book have assigned this sermon of Abu Bakr as a document to wipe out his mistakes and to show that his government was democracy and the people were free what to do.

We have tried in our previous discussions, and God-willing, so will we have prove in our future explanations that the government of Islam is based upon the Truth but not the votes of the people or the majority and the minority.

The clear text of the Qur’an and the right rules and traditions of the Messenger of Allah and the chaste Imams as well as the wise believe that the reality of the Truth is following it not selecting it by the votes. They avoid following against the reality even the entire world support it.

This is the major difference between the Shiite and the Sunnite, all other problems pop out of this one.

Since the rise of Islam, the Shiite has always cried out and have given reasons that ‘the Truth’ must be followed not the votes of the nations; the Imamate is appointed, it is not by election. People must follow the ‘Truth’, and the rightful Imam must be chosen by Allah, similar to the messengers who are sent by Allah, and the people have no right to choose the messengers.

The Shiite proves that in ruling and governing the people, there is no different between the Messenger-hood and the Imamate: they are two saplings that have grown from a single tree, or are two babies suckling the same breast.

The common people say: ‘The Imamate is a superficial government so it is not important following an ignorant or a sinner Leader!’ Of course, according to this logic, Abu Bakr is considered as the sample of liberal – as the Sunnite’s modernists love to say so.

Of course, nowadays, the liberal has a vast meaning and it is quite different from that nightly propaganda and not letting the Bani Hashim, the Immigrants and the Supporters know about the swearing allegiance; and it is not like that they broke the side of Zahra, the daughter of the Messenger of Allah, and avoided punishing Khalid bin Walid, who had killed Malik bin Nawira, just to rape his beautiful wife at the same night! And there are numerous of wrongdoings which the west countries do not consider them against the liberty – they have their unreasonable explanations.

However, the Shiite uproots this logic, and with its wise and philosophical reasons proves the weakness of these thoughts. As we previously explained it in the narration of Abu Ay‘yūb Ansari that the Messenger of Allah Bless be to him and his Descendants said to Ammar Yasir: “If the entire people of the world are at one side but Ali is at another side, you take Ali’s side and leave all the people on their own.” Then, the Messenger of Allah Bless be to him and his Descendants clearly stated: “Ali does not deviate you from the right path; he does not guide you to the wrong way. That is, certainly Ali is on the path of the ‘Truth’ and you must obey him even if the whole people of the world are against him!” [31]

This is the common sense of the Shiite which if the logic of the Islam.   

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[1] Surah 10, "یونس", Verse 35.

[2] Surah 21, "انبیاء", Verse 73.

[3] Surah 2, "بقرة", Verse 124.

[4] Al-Mizan, volume 1, page 277.

[5] Ghazi Noor-ul-Lah has reasoned similar basis in different clause in "احقاق الحق‏", volume 2, page 396.

[6] Surah 2, "بقرة", Verse 124.

[7] Surah 32, "السجده", Verse 24.

[8] Surah 21, "انبیاء", Verse 73.

[9] Surah 72, "جن", Verse 27.

[10] Surah 21, "انبیاء", Verse 73.

[11] Surah 32, "السجده", Verse 24.

[12] Surah 17, "اسراء", Verse 71.

[13] "ينابيع المودة", page 246.

[14] "ينابيع المودة", page 246.

[15] "ينابيع المودة", page 246.

[16] "ينابيع المودة", page 247.

[17] "ينابيع المودة", page 247.

[18] "ينابيع المودة", page 247.

[19] "ينابيع المودة", page 256 and Al-Ghadir extracted from the book of "مودة القربى‏" volume 2, page 51.

[20] "غایة المرام", page 16.

[21] "غایة المرام", page 16.

[22] The same narrative is discussed in the second volume of this book; and also in volume 5, page 368 of "الصواعق المحرقه‏", this similar clause is related in page 30.

[23] Surah 24, "نور", Verse 40 .

[24] The History of Ya'qubi, volume 2, page 127, and the Explanation of Nahj-ul-Balagha, volume 2, page 8, have also added that: "ان لى شيطاناً يعترينى فاياكم و اياى اذا غضبت لا اؤثر فى اشعاركم و ابشاركم‏"and so is it in the Encyclopedia of Farid and Jodai, volume 2, page 300.

[25] "سیره ابن هشام", volume 4, page 1075.

[26] The History of Tabari, volume 2, page 460.

[27] And also Ghazi Abdul Jabbar in the “Moghni” and ibn Temiiah in the “mihaj al-Sonnah” and Moheb ad-Din Tabari in the “Ar-Reiaz an-Nazarah” and Seyouti in the “Caliphs ‘Histories” and Ibn Hajar in “As-Sawaigh al-Mohraghah”. and ibn Abi in the “Comment of the Path of the Eloquence” have written this.

[28] "مروج الذهب‏" in volume 2, page 308, and "the History of Tabary", in volume 2, page 619, have written it the same: فوددت انى لم اكشف بيت فاطمه عن شيئى و ان كانوا قد غلقوه على الحرب‏….

[29] "الامامة و السياسة", volume 1, page 18 and "عقد الفريد", volume 2, page 254.

[30] "Al-Ghadir", volume 7, pages 170-171.

[31] This narrative has already been related from "غاية المرام‏" of Mowaffagh bin Ahmad Kharazmi, in this book, in the section of 12, the narrative concerning the priority and virtue of the Commander of the believers.

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