‘Allāma Tabātabā’ī used to visit the shrine of Hazrat Ma’sūma (s) at least once every week. He would walk [to the shrine], and along the way, if he saw a discarded orange, cucumber or banana peel, he would use his staff to remove it from the sidewalk. During the summer he used to visit the holy city of Mashhad. When visiting the shrine of Imām Ridha (a) at night, he would sit in the area adjacent to the side of the shrine (dharīh) where Imām’s head is buried. In a state of humbleness and humility he would then recite the ziyārat (greetings to the Imām). Whilst in Mashhad he would participate in the Maghrib and ‘Ishā congregational prayers led by Ayatullah Sayyid Muhammad Hādi Mīlānī, sitting in a corner amongst the people [during the namaz].
‘Allāma had an intimate relationship with the Prophet (s) and the Imāms (a). He would mention their names with extreme decorum and reverence, participate in gatherings where their deaths were mourned, and weep profusely for the tragedies that the Ahlul Bayt had faced.
Ayatullah Ibrāhim Amīnī
Marhūm ‘Allāma’s connection with the Ahlul-Bayt was one of complete love. Not once do I remember him mentioning the names of any one of the Imāmswithout respect. Each time he would enter the shrine of Imām Ridhā (a) in the holy city of Mashhad, I would see him place his trembling hands on the threshold and kiss it – his entire body quivering from the depths of his soul.
Occasionally in his presence we would ask him to pray for us. He would reply, “Go and ask from Hazrat [Imām]. We have no special position here, everything is available from him”.
When he kissed the wooden frame of the shrine (dharīh), his entire being reflected a profound etiquette towards Imām Ridhā (a). With complete propriety (adab) and extreme love he would then recite his prayers in a corner. From the time he would enter until the time he left he conducted himself with adab.
Hujjatulislām Doctor Ahmadī
A scholar once asked Shahīd Ayatullah Mutahharī, “Why do you respect ‘Allāma Tabātabā’ī so much and say may I be sacrificed for him”?
I have seen many philosophers and mystics. My unique respect for ‘Allāma is not related to his being a philosopher. Rather, my reverence stems from the fact that he is an enamored lover of the Ahlul-Bayt. [For example] ‘Allāma Tabātabā’ī used to break his fast in the month of Ramadhān by kissing the shrine (dharīh) of Hazrat Ma’sūmā (a). He would walk to the holy shrine, kiss the dharīh, and then return to his home to eat. It is this characteristic of his that has captivated me to such a degree.
Daily activities that occupied ‘Allāma day and night did not prevent him from seeking intercession and exhibiting propriety (adab) for the Ahlul-Bayt. Rather he recognized that he was indebted to their intercession for his situation. His respect for the words of the Ma’sūmīn was so great that even when dealing with traditions whose chains of narration were weak, he acted in a cautionary manner because of the possibility that they might be from the Ahlul-Bayt. In addition, he believed that even the slightest disrespect or ill-thought towards this pure family should not be tolerated.
Ayatullah Misbāh Yazdī
Whenever the name of one of the Ma’sūmīn was mentioned, humility and etiquette would be apparent on ‘Allāma’s face. He had particular reverence for Imām Zamān [the 12th Holy Imam] – may we be sacrificed for him. He considered the position of the Prophet, Imāms and Hadhrat Siddāqa Kubrā [Sayyida Fatima] (a) to be beyond description. He had a humble, reverential and pious manner in respect to them, considered their position and status to be celestial, and had an in-depth knowledge of their actions and history.