Letter 59

Muharram 28, 1330

I. Truth Manifests

1) I have never seen, in the past or in the present, anyone more gentle in his tone, more strong in his argument, than your own self. Now truth has manifested itself due to the proofs which you have brought forth, thus uncovering the mask of doubt, revealing the pleasant countenance of conviction.

No longer do we claim that the meaning of "wali" and "mawla" in hadith al­Ghadir is "foremost," or that it implies the "supporter," or the like, nor anything akin to what that man who asked for a sure torment had suggested; your view regarding the "mawla" stands on firm grounds, and is taken for granted.

II. Evasion

2) I wish you agree to our interpretation of the said hadith which is endorsed by a group of learned ‘ulema, including imam Ibn Hajar in his Al-Sawa’iq al-Muhriqa, and al­Halabi in his Sirat. They argue that even if we agree that he (‘Ali) is the most worthy of imamate, the [Prophet's] intention here is futuristic; otherwise, he would have become the Imam in spite of the presence of the Prophet (S) [which is an impossible situation, since the Prophet, as long as he was alive, was the sole Imam­tr.], who did not mind the forthcoming of an Imam after him.

It is as though the Prophet (S) had said: "‘Ali shall be the Imam as soon as he receives the oath of allegiance;" so, such a situation will not collide with the precedence of the three Imams; it thus safeguards the honour of the good ancestors, may Allah Almighty be pleased with them all.