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A Few Quotes of Imam Ali (‘a)

Conduct

People act like mirrors; friends reflect your good qualities and enemies your faults.

Ten social virtues

Generosity, modesty, truthfulness, integrity, hospitality, decency, courage, tolerance, steadfastness and gratitude

Sincerity

A person is sincere if his words and deeds, exterior and interior are the same; he fulfills his pledges and maintains purity in worship.
A favour is a trust that you must return.

Courtesy

Courtesy conceals genetic flaws.
Intelligence blossoms on courtesy.

Unity

Truth unites, falsehood divides. Stay with the truthful, no matter how few; stay away from the false, no matter how many.
Satan first creates discord in congregations, then divides and destroys.

Speech

Speech is the scale, which reason makes weighty, ignorance makes weightless.
A man reveals himself through his speech.
The knowledge expressed only through speech is the meanest; that which is demonstrated through every act of the body is sublime.

Learning through experience

He who learns a lesson from each experience will save himself from ruin.
In the rise and fall of fortunes are lessons to be learnt.

Folly

A man’s folly is demonstrated through three acts:
Talking about matters that don’t concern him
Offering comments when not asked
Interfering in other people’s affairs without understanding
He, who thinks he is the wisest, is the most foolish.
A foolish man speaks without thinking; a wise man thinks before he speaks.

Ignorance

Ignorance reveals itself in the following:
Being angry without cause,
Speaking without need,
Rewarding the undeserving,
Not distinguishing between friend and foe,
Revealing a secret,
Trusting everyone.
The ignorant never realizes his mistake nor accepts advice.

Lies

No one ever believes a man who lies.

Nobility

Ensuring justice for the weak is a sign of nobility.

Defect

The greatest of defects is to point out a defect in others, which you yourself possess but fail to notice in yourself.
He is the wisest who tries to mend his own defects rather than keep an eye on the defects of others.

Hypocrisy

Hypocrites can be identified by the following characteristics:
They say peace but mean war.
Their nourishment is false allegations.
Their generosity is being dishonest.
They keep their distance due to arrogance.
They do not wish anybody well.
They sleep like a log at night and create furor during the day.
They have no respect for the mosque, and present themselves in it at the end of the prayer or worship.

Revenge

The best revenge is to improve yourself.
It is easier to win your enemy over by sincere measures and good deeds than declare war and dominate him after great bloodshed and destruction.
The best revenge is forgiveness.

Miserliness

A true believer (momin) is never miserly nor ill tempered.

Envy

Three things can only ruin:
Arrogance- it brought damnation to Iblis
Avarice- it made Adam lose paradise
Envy- it made Qabeel commit the first murder, and that too of his own brother, Habeel
Envy is to man what rust is to iron.

Malice

Malice is an incurable disease, which is also infectious.
He who breeds malice breeds unhappiness and lives in it till he dies.

Disobedience

The worst friend is one who glorifies the disobedience of God.
Try to postpone disobeying God, instead of hurrying to disobey.

Death

He who desires the world is sought by death, and he who is prepared for it, the world seeks to deliver his sustenance to him.
He who waits for death hurries to perform good deeds.
Death for the virtuous is a reward for them, death for the vicious is a relief for the people.

Martyrdom is the best way to depart from this world. I swear by him in whose hand lies the soul of this son of Abu Talib (‘a), I would prefer a thousand wounds of the sword in the way of Allah, than disobey Him and die in bed.

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