The Ayatullah's will to his children, relatives, friends, and well-wishers. Advice on achieving higher spiritual levels.
Alhamdi Lillahe Rabbil Aalamin Wassalato Wassalamo Ala Nabiyeid-din wa Aalehi Gurral Mayamin Amma Baad.
When this weak slave Abdullah Mamkani realized this world's short life and unreliability and when he became sure that death does not give extension to anybody - you cannot delay the destined time by even a second - then I became afraid, lest
I depart from this world without teaching my son spiritual guidance! Therefore I found it necessary to write a book in the form of a 'Will' which will serve as a guidance to my children, my friends, my relatives and others who wish to get religious and worldly benefits.
It is my heartfelt desire that all my children and my religious brethrens should read this 'Will' at least once or once a month. Whosoever of my children who doesn't read this, will be considered 'Aak' in my view and there will be no hope of salvation either in this world or the hereafter. If someone draws salvation from some of the advices in this 'Will', then he should try to act on the remaining advices also, so that one day, he is strong enough to act on all the advices in this book.
Those of my relatives, who may act on this 'Will', I pray to Allah to bless them in this world as well as in the next world, to protect them from sins and losses, to increase their life-span and may they live in peace and ease.
O God! For this 'Will', I reward me and my children on that day - the day when neither wealth nor children will be of any help.
- Shaikh Abdullah Mamkani (a.r)
'Miratur-Rashad' by Ayatulla As-Shaikh Abdulla Al-Mamkani (t.s) was translated into Urdu by Allama Syed Zeeshan Haider Jawadi and then from Urdu to Gujarati by Janab Yusuf Jigar.
I have translated it into English from the Gujarati version, though, for obvious reasons, it would have been much better had it been translated from the original text. However, I must confess that there were a few sentences and paragraphs which I could not understand. so, instead of translating those sentences and paragraphs, I have thought it prudent not to translate them at all, lest I convey some other meaning that what the author intended. Besides, at certain places, instead of literal translation, I have taken the liberty of 'rephrasing' to make the meaning more clear and explicit. In my humble opinion, these deletions and 'rephrasings', in no way effect the overall impact of this book.
This is my first attempt at translation. So, it is likely that there may be some mistakes. I request my readers to point out these mistakes to me so that they can be corrected in the next edition.
If any Mu’min wants to translate any religious matter from Gujarati to English or vice versa. I will be happy to do it 'Fi Sabilillah' free of cost -
provided subsequent publishing is not meant for making profits. Those interested, may contact Mr. Imran Rasool at World Islamic Network, Mumbai, India.
Your critical comments and suggestions are most welcome.
May Allah give us Tawfik to act on the advices contained in this scholarly book. Ameen.
C. I. Valjee - Translator
My son! May Allah guide you to the right path and protect you from all sins and mistakes. Remember, your first Islamic duty is to think and ponder deeply about the principles of religion (Usul al-Deen). Make the foundation of faith strong by forceful arguments, have implicit faith in the Creator of the Universe, prophets and walis. Human being is born from human being. He is not an animal.
This does not mean that man should delve deep into the realm of knowledge and wisdom and continue reading voluminous books. Masoomeen (a.m.s) have also warned against going too deep and I also warn you.
What I mean to say is that you should read such books like ‘Aqaaed–e-Majlisi’ by Allama Majlisi (a.r.). Strengthen your belief by arguments, e.g. to prove the existence of Allah, study the creation of the world and its wonderful objects, and ponder that the creation cannot be any creation without a creator.
Amirul Mu’mineen Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s) has said in ‘Nahjul Balagah’.
“These people think that this grass is such that no one has grown it! This is such a picture for which there is no painter! These people do not put forward any proof in support for their claim. How I wish they would think that nothing could be created without a creator, or how is it possible to create something without a creator.”
Son! May Allah save you from ‘Shirk’ (equating someone else with Allah). To prove that there is only one God, suffice is to say that if there were more than one god then they would have destroyed the world. Allah has said that if there were two gods, then both the earth and sky would have been destroyed.
Amirul Mu’mineen Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s) has said:
“If there was another god except Allah, then that god also would have had his messengers and prophets.’
Son! To prove prophethood, suffice is to say that it is imperative for Allah’s mercy, bounty and love that there should be a link between the creator and the creation – someone who can bring his ‘Faiz’ from there; and inform about good and evil, beneficial and harmful, who desists you from evil deeds and encourages you to do good deeds.
Therefore to make you understand the real benefits and harms, there is no other way except ‘Wahi’ and ‘Ilham’. Human beings, who are immersed in worldly desires, cannot get Wahi or Ilham. They cannot reach that height. For that, it requires a ‘Soul’ who is above worldly desires, who is not a slave to Nafs al-Ammara (soul which is attracted towards worldly desires), and who deserves Allah’s bounties and mercies by his spirituality and purity of soul.
It is essential to remember that each and every man cannot have knowledge of Wahi or Ilham. For that, miracle is necessary whereby prophethood is proved, and whereby special relation between Allah and his messenger can be understood.
To prove that fact that Hazrat Muhammad Mustafa (S) was the prophet of Allah, it is suffice to say that he proclaimed his prophethood in Mecca, announced that there is only one God and that he is His prophet and performed innumerable miracles. Now show anyone else, who can perform like him and who has his attributes! Allah never supports a liar nor does He give him any miracles.
Of all his miracles, the Holy Qur’an is sufficient to prove his prophethood, while it is very illogical to put miracle in the hands of a wrong claimant and it is tantamount to supporting a liar. Not only that, it is against the Justice of Allah.
From the prophethood of Hazrat Muhammad Mustafa (S), the prophethood of one hundred twenty four thousand prophets is also proved. He had given information about all these prophets. Prophet never gives wrong information and he does not lie.
The proof that the Holy Qur’an is a miracle is that the Holy Hazrat Prophet (S) put two options before the scholars of Arabic language: Either bring its reply or have faith in my prophethood; otherwise get ready for war which will result in all sorts of humiliations and insults. Though they were scholars of Arabic language, they bore all the hardships but did not reply to the Holy Qur’an. This means that they could not reply. They were not in a position to reply otherwise they would not have suffered all these hardships.
It is wrong to think that ‘word’ cannot be a miracle. ‘Mojiza’ is a name of everything to which people cannot reply and it becomes evident that the person has special relation with Allah. The fact that Mojiza is beyond the capacity of human beings is proved and accepted by those who specialize in this subject. The scholars of Arabic language have accepted the miracle of Holy Qur’an in the same way as the magicians of Firaun accepted the miracle of the Asa (Stick) of Hazrat Moosa (a.s.), and they removed the Kasidas (poems) hanging in the Holy Kaaba in deference to the Ayaats of the Holy Qur’an.
The argument that applies to ‘Naboowate Mutlaqa’ also applies to ‘Vilayat-Mutlaqa’. There are clear Ahadith from the Holy Prophet (S) about ‘Vilayat al-Khassa,’ in which the Holy Prophet (S) has declared the “Khilafat” of Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s.) and after him, his eleven progenies, as Imams. In addition, the deeds of these personalities are proofs in themselves.
The objections of the opponents are nothing but obstinacy. These objections have been replied in details in many books. This question has become so very clear that even the enemies have no doubts in their hearts, though they may deny it on the face.
As regards ‘Qayamat’ (Day of Judgment), it is the unanimous opinion of all sects of Islam that it should be accepted and cannot be denied. However, some scholars and philosophers have raised doubts about its details, but common man is not concerned with it in anyway. Suffice is to have faith in Qayamat which is clear from the many Ayaats and Ahadith. We have even been shown the way to argue about it. That a just ruler must reward or punish everyone according to his deeds and that too, to the one who performed these deeds.
Just because body is destroyed is no argument that a the body cannot be brought back to its original state. When the ‘Creator can create Adam (from nothing), so what difficulty is there in creating it again when the ‘Madda’ (essence) is present in whatever state it may be. It is stated in the Holy Qur’an, “We will recreate you second time in the same way as We created you originally.”
Son! May Allah guide you to obey Him and protect you from sins. As a craftsman loves his crafted products, so does Allah bestows His love and affections on human beings. His rules regarding Wajib (Compulsory), Sunnat, Haram (not permissible), Makruh etc. are for the benefit of mankind. These orders are to protect him from loss and to benefit him.
Allah does not gain anything by man’s obedience to Him nor does He suffer any loss by man’s sinning. He is ‘Gani’. He wants to improve means to be ungrateful to one who has bestowed His bounties on him. Not only that, it is also foolishness, because instead of bounties, he brings upon himself losses.
Son! Protect yourself from sin. It brings dishonor in this world and curse on the day of judgment. Adam had to get out of paradise, just because of one ‘Tark al-Awla’.
Son! Never remain idle and lazy. When Shaytan and Nafs al-Ammara get tired of showing evil in the guise of good and good in the guise of evil, then he creates laziness in human being so that he may not be able to do good deeds. Remember, don’t waste so much time in rest, amassing wealth, excursions and arranging meetings and get-togethers that you feel lazy to offer prayers. Keep worldly works in limit.
Beware! Don’t waste your life in useless and unnecessary activities. Each second is worth a precious pearl – nay - more precious than a pearl, because you can buy a pearl with your money but you cannot get back your lost time. Beware, don’t waste a single second of your life.
Before youth turns to old age, before disease overtakes health, before weakness overtakes strength, consider life as a blessings before death. (make best use of life)1.
It is mentioned in the traditions that people in paradise will repent for the seconds and minutes spent without the remembrance of Allah. If they had spend those time in the remembrance of Allah, then their position in paradise would have been more exalted.
Every good and evil person will repent on the day of Judgement. Good people will say “How I wish I had done more good deeds, so that my position would have been more exalted.” Bad people will say “How I had not done evil deeds so that I may have been saved from Allah’s curse2.”
The Holy Prophet (S) had advised Janabe Abu Dharr “Spent your life more miserly than Dirham and Dinar3.”
Spending your time wisely is the best obedience. A farmer who wastes his time during farming season repents in the end4.
Son! For Allah’s sake, make best use your life. Don’t spend it in such activities that will not benefit you after death. Intelligent man is one who does tomorrow’s work today. Foolish person is one who first follows his heart’s desires and then seeks forgiveness5.
One who spends his life in idle talk is like one who throws his jewellery on the road and then sits digging stone (for children to play). Obviously this is sheer foolishness.
Son! Apple of my eye, value your life, don’t use it in any activities except those which will prove useful to save you from the fire of hell. Don’t become a silk-worm who tried to kill itself.
Having said this, develop the finest and best character. The following are the details about “Character”.
Preserve your tongue from idle talk because majority of the sins committed by the son of Adam is due to the tongue only. No other part of the body commits more sins than the tongue6.
Silence is one of the gates of wisdom7.
Always protect your tongue. Say only those words which will take you to paradise.
As long as a god-fearing man remains silent, he is counted amongst good people.
A person, who desires safety in this world and the world hereafter, should remain silent.
The only reason man will go to hell face downwards is because of his tongue.
When Allah wishes to bless His servant, then He helps him in controlling his tongue. Instead of finding faults in others, Allah keeps him busy in looking at his own defects. Those who speak less, their intelligence is complete and their hearts are pure. Those who speak more, their intelligence is incomplete and their hearts are hard8.
A man’s faith is correct only when his heart is pure, and the heart is pure only when his tongue is good9.
A God-fearing man’s tongue should be behind his heart. First, he should think, then he should speak justly. Otherwise he should keep quiet. A Munafik acts just the opposite of this. He keeps talking rubbish. He is not worried about what he is talking10.
By keeping silent, you don’t have to be ashamed nor there is need to repent, but by speaking, sometimes, you have to repent in this world as well as in the next world11.
Man is hiding behind his tongue12.
Son! First weigh, then speak. First test your words on the crucible of intelligence. If the talk is for Allah, then speak. Otherwise keep quiet. Absolutely quiet. Better still become dumb.
All the parts of our body are complaining to the tongue that if ‘speaking’ and ‘remaining silent’ are compared, than speech is like silver while silence is like gold13.
However, it is different that sometimes speech is like gold while silence is like dust. When there is any discussion about Fiqh, religious education, lecture, advice, manners and character, then speech becomes gold and remaining silent is like deadly poison. Specially at the time of ‘Amr Bil Maruf’ and ‘Nahi Anil Munkar’, silence is harmful.
Son! Like a businessman, take account of what you have done during the day so that you know what you have done. If you have done any mistake or sin, then ask for Allah’s forgiveness. If you have to compensate somebody, then give him his dues. If you feel lazy, idle or see waste of wealth, then criticise your soul (nafs). Be careful that wastage like this does not occur again. If you have done any good deed, then thank Allah and pray for more guidance.
Masoomeen (a.m.s.) has said, “Whosoever dose not do daily account of his deeds, he is not a Shia. It is the duty of a Shia to scrutinize his account. If he has done good deeds then try to do more good deeds and if he has done evil deeds, then he should ask for Allah’s forgiveness14.”
It has been written about some ‘Aarifs’ that they always kept pen and paper ready with them. They wrote down whatever they had said or done during the day. Lastly, at night they scrutinized what they had done good deeds then they thanked Allah and if they had done evil deeds, they asked for forgiveness from Allah.
It is stated in ‘Sohof al-Ibrahim’ that an intelligent man should divide his time in four parts. One part for Allah’s prayers and remembrance, one part for self-introspection, one part to think and ponder over Allah’s creations, His craftsmanship and artistry and one part to earn Halal wealth. It is this part that is the life of all the parts and is the medium of peace of mind and heart.
Son! Take care of your Nafs (soul). Always think that Allah is in front of you. He is watching your activities, speech, action and thought. So, do such deeds which pleases
Allah . Lukman Hakim had advised his son that if he kept Allah in sight and thought about Him, he will never commit sin. To make a man ashamed, it is suffice to think that Allah is keeping a watch over his deeds.
Always meditate and ponder so that your soul becomes active and your heart becomes pure. This cleanses the dirt of the heart and shatters worldly desires. You distance yourself from the world and start paying attention to the next world.
Meditation and thinking is best form of religious activity. It is the soul of prayers. To think and ponder about the marvelous creation of Allah is the best form of prayer15.
Elaborating on this Hadith (tradition), scholars have stated that ‘Prayer’ leads a man to ‘Thawab’ while thinking and meditating leads a man near to Allah. It is evident that Allah is more desirable than ‘Thawab’. Besides, prayer is the activity of the body while meditating and thinking is the activity of the heart.
And heart is the most important part of the body. Therefore, the Thawab of one second of meditation and pondering is more than the thawab of one year’s Ibadat. Some traditions say that it is more than 60-70 years Ibadat.
Meditation – pondering saves a man from the fire of hell. e.g. one minute of thinking by Hazrat Hoor bin Yazid al-Riyahi, saved him from the fire of hell. Otherwise, if he had prayed all his life, it would not have earned him anything. Therefore, one minute of meditation is better than 70 years of Ibadat. It is said about this type of meditation and thought that the name of Salat (prayer) and Siyam (fast) are not Ibadat. It is meditating and thinking about the qualities of Allah that is the name of Ibadat.
Son, have you ever thought of those people who have gone ahead of you? From where had they come and where have they gone? What did they take along with them and what did they leave behind? What were they doing? How they left all their business and went away. Those who did not put their feet on earth, resting
on soft cushion, walking proudly erect on earth and now….now they are sleeping on earth wearing shrouds, leaving behind all their wealth, children, farms, bungalows, etc. Their soft and delicate
cheeks are smeared with mud. Insects, serpents and scorpions are crawling over their bodies. Now they have only a corner of the grave and loneliness16.
Sometimes, think about death. It comes all of a sudden and does not give a Mu’mins’ respite. Be careful of every second. Always be ready for death. Don’t be lazy in asking for Allah’s forgiveness and doing good deeds. Never be complacent, many people have gone suddenly. They did not get time even to ask for Allah’s forgiveness. Beware, lest you may be one of those dejected and hopeless people. Lest you have to say ’O Allah, send me once again’.
Sometimes, think that this world is the house of calamities and miseries. Its cleanliness is mixed with dirt. Its rest and leisure is also mixed with sorrow. Here there is no complete rest or leisure. It is stated in ‘Hadith al-Qudsi’: “These people seek relief in this world while we have not created relief and comfort in this world. And where we have created these things, they are not searching there.”
Son! When you think of all these things, your worldly troubles will become bearable and you will be attracted towards the hereafter. To bear worldly sufferings is the best deed for the hereafter.
Sometimes, think about the future. In front of you, there is grave, barzakh, hashr account of all your deeds, serat, mizan, paradise – hell.
Have you ever thought that after death, only that wealth which has been spent in the ways of Allah will be beneficial? Only shroud will come with you. All your friends, relatives, well wishers and children only know to put you in the grave. Only your deeds will be helpful to you. They will not get separated from you. If you will think of all these, then you will be able to do good deeds. This will lead to purity in intentions and before times passes, you will be careful about tomorrow.
It is stated in the traditions that the best thing that desists you from committing sin is the remembrance of death. Thinking about death is the best Ibadat and the best meditation is also thinking about death17.
Those who do not think about death, they waste their time in useless work. Those who remember death, death, spend their time in performing good deeds. Death is the best advisor. Thinking about death softens the hardness of circumstances. It encourages a rich many to charity. It desists a man from doing useless work. Not only that, it eases the hardship. It attracts you towards the benefit of the hereafter and discourages you from having high hopes, leisure and doing unrewarding deeds.
Son! Remember three things. Patience in hardship, thanking Allah for his bounties and being happy in Allah’s will. For those who have faith in Allah, these are the three tests. Those who have passed these tests, have attained exalted positions.
Son! Keep your soul happy in distress as if you have received His bounties. Be satisfied in whatever condition Allah keeps you, whether health - sickness, hardship – ease, youth old age, strength – weakness, poverty – riches, because He is aware of the result of keeping you in such a condition. He loves you more than you. He loves you more than your parents and He is sympathetic to your condition.
Son! Don’t cry when calamities befall you. Don’t start sobbing and complaining. Be satisfied with Allah’s will. Don’t publicise your troubles and calamities by complaining to all and sundry.
Hazrat Imam Zainul Abedeen (a.s.) has said: “When calamities come, be patient like a noble man. Don’t complain to people about Allah because it is like complaining to cruel people about one who is the most Beneficent and the most Merciful.
Son! Be happy in hardship as if at ease, be happy in poverty as if rich and be happy in calamities as if satisfied and pleased.
Masoomin (a.s.) has said: To be patient in calamities and hardships is the best obedience of Allah. Better than that, it is necessary to be patient while desisting from Haram deeds18.
The Holy prophet (S) has said: Whosoever is patient in calamities, Allah gives him three hundred status, whosoever is patient in obedience to Allah, will get six hundred status, whosoever is patient in desisting from evil deeds, will get nine hundred status.
On the subject of good character, religious scholars have fixed certain yardsticks:
(1) It is very essential to be patient when you do not get desired health, wealth, honour, family and worldly pleasures. To get immersed in these things result in your destruction.
(2) Patience in the obedience of Allah: This is a very difficult task. Man’s soul is not willing to pray or obey somebody. Ego is involved in it. Every soul has elements of evilness of Firaun. There is a desire to rule over everybody. No sooner it gets some support, evilness of Firaun raises its head.
One starts behaving arrogantly with his employees, servants and children and gets furious even for small mistakes. This is a sign of pride. Son! At the time of obedience, it is essential to be patient before, during and after doing a deed. Patience before doing a deed purifies your Niyyat (intention), patience during doing a deed helps in the remembrance of Allah and does not give rise to Riyakari (doing deeds to show off to the world), patience after doing a deed means you should not take pride in your good deed otherwise your good deed is wasted.
(3) To desist from sins and to be patient: Human being always has the tendency of committing sins in his heart. Lies, backbiting, gibat and accusing others have become routine. Gradually this habit becomes second nature. When worldly desires get mixed with it, then the army of Shaytan attacks and when one starts getting pleasure and enjoyment in sins, then it becomes hell.
(4) To be patient at a time when you are powerless e.g. it is necessary to be patient and leave the matter to Allah when someone harasses you and you do not take revenge even though you have the power to take revenge. Traditions and experiences are unanimous that Allah is the best revenge-taker. He punishes him in this worlds also before punishing him in the hereafter.
(5) To be patient in such work in which beginning or end is not in our power e.g. to be patient in not having relatives and friends, to be patient at the loss of wealth, deterioration of health, some parts of our body not functioning, lack of eye-sight, poverty and hunger. Though it is difficult to be patient in these conditions but the rewards are manifold. Allah has promised blessings to those who are patient.
Son! may Allah gives your strength for all types of patience. Remember, some of these things give you strength to be patient.
Look at the status of those who are patient, and look at its rewards and thawabs. Paradise is for those who are patient19.
(1) Those who are patient get as much thawab as those who are always fasting and praying. A patient man gets as much thawab as a martyr doing jihad with the Holy Prophet (S).
To be patient in hunger gets you the thawab of jihad (fighting in the way of Allah) and it is more than sixty years of Ibabat.
A momin who is patient in calamity gets thawab of one thousand martyrs20.
(2) To look at the thawab and status attained by patient men which we have seen and experienced.
(3) To think that this difficult period will be over shortly. Life is going to end. The pleasure and hardship through which it is passing is going to end and nobody knows what is the future going to be.
(4) You should also think that nothing is going to be achieved by crying and complaining. Whatever the fate has decreed
is bound to happen. Crying may reduce the thawab and reward. No one can change destiny. There is nothing one can do about it.
(5) Remember those people who have attained best of rewards and thawab by passing through difficult trials and tribulations.
(6) Trail is a sign of good fortune. Hardships are only for those who love Allah. Great hardship and difficulty of Mu’mins is a sign of nearness to Allah. This thought increases your strength to be patient.
(7) Remember, this hardship is from Allah and He wishes well for His slaves He does not need anyone so that He can take advantage of him.
(8) You should consider that remaining patient cleanses your soul and is a good way of self purification.
(9) The result of patience is always good in this world. When Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) remained patient by desisting from sinning, then Allah rewarded him with great honour by making him ‘Hakim’ of Egypt. His brothers became his subjects. Zulekha was thrown on the road etc. etc
Similarly, Hazrat Ayyub (a.s.) got back his wealth, children, wife etc. second time. One who had lost everything during his test was rewarded with rain of gold!
It is even better to remember the tragedy and hardship of Ahle Bait (a.m.s.) The endured the maximum hardships even though they were the master of the whole universe. This world was created for them.
Beware! Your patience should not be like those of ordinary people. Instead of remaining patient, they were more concerned with their exhibition of patience. This is Riyakari. The patience of muttaqi (pious) people should be such in which there is hope of reward in the hereafter. Arifs (those who have knowledge about the qualities of Allah) should be such that at the time of patience, they should enjoy their hardships because these hardships have been given by the Beloved who is aware of its result.
Son! Also remember, patience is not against crying and sobbing. Don’t you know that the Holy Prophet (S) cried at the time of the death of his son Ibrahim? When someone said that you advice us to be patient and you yourself are crying? Then the Holy Prophet (S) said: Beware, when there is grief in the heart, tears are bound to flow. Our patience is that we do not speak against the will of Allah.
Son! When calamity comes, recite “Inna Lillahe Wa Inna Elaihe Rajeoon”. By this, you get the right of Allah’s blessings and bounties and you are considered amongst those who are on the straight path.
It is stated by Hazrat Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) that when the period of patience is over, you feel happy. Experience also testifies to it. After every shortage there is abundance.
Patience is the best of all the good qualities. Only its name changes according to circumstances.
The name of patience about physical and sexual hunger is “Iffat”. Restrain during hardship is called “Patience”. Patience by abstaining from sin is called “Taqwa”. Patience at the loss of wealth is called “Zabt al-Nafs”. Patience at the time of worldly loss and calamities is called “wusat al-Sakr.” Patience during war is called “Shujaat” (bravery). Patience while controlling anger is called “Hilm” Restsrain at the time of someone’s confidential talk is called “Razadari’. Patience against unnecessary leisure is called “Zohad”. To be satisfied with little is called “Qanaat”.
Son! May Allah give you the best of both the worlds. Have faith in Allah in whatever you do. Everything is in His hands. Everything is done according to His will. By putting faith in A1lah, a man is saved from sorrow and grief and he does not go after useless pursuits.
Sometimes you succeed in achieving your goal and sometimes you fail. Suppose all your endeavours fail and if you have no faith in Allah, then you will be disappointed. But if you have faith in Allah, then you will not be sorry even if you fail. To place faith in other sources is described as ‘Shirk’ in the holy Qur’an. So have faith in Allah in whatever you do and desist from putting faith in other sources.
The importance of medium is not more than that of a mosquito. It is a deception that people living in this materialistic world should have their eyes on ‘Asabab’. It is a ‘waswasa’ of Shaytan. ‘Materialistic world’ means that the existence of things is because of mediums and causes. Therefore man should not put faith in mediums. His faith should always be on Allah. Whenever Allah wishes, He will create ‘asbab’
Son! Don’t be misguided that to earn your living, you have to run after it, because all things have been created so that the world’s administration keeps on moving. Allah’s blessing are not dependant on these things. Have faith in Allah. Leave the creation of Asbab on ‘Musab-bebul-Asbab’ He will create some or the other source to send you your Rozi’ (sustenance). Of course, everyone has to work according to his needs.
It is proved from experience that those who have left the search of Asbab in the hands of Allah have profited more while those who have put their faith in ‘Asbab have suffered losses e.g. when Hazarat Yusuf (a.s.) asked the king of Egypt to make him his treasurer, Allah extended his period of test by one year. If he had asked Allah instead, then he would have been released earlier. In another incident, when Hazarat Yusuf (a.s.) asked one of his co-prisoner to recommend him to the king. Allah extended his period of custody in prison by seven years, why did he ask somebody else instead of Me?
If he had prayed to Allah directly, he would have been released immediately. For this ‘Tark al-Awla’ Allah had warned that you asked one person through another person while both are in Allah’s control. Why I was not asked? I am ‘Malekul-Muluk.’ After that He send Gabriel, who asked Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) “How long do you wish to stay in prison? To which he replied “As long as Allah wishes.” “When he left it on the will of Allah, he was released by reciting ‘Dua al-Tawassul.’
It is the same with Hazrat Ayub (a.s.). He complained to the king of Egypt. As a result, he was not released till he did not refer it to Allah. This is considered’ Tark al-Awla’ for ‘Awliya’.
Son! Beware! Never ask for your needs to anyone else except Allah. Say whatever you want to say to Allah. He is the only Lord and the most Merciful.
Hazrat Ibrahim (a.s.) did not ask anything from anybody except Allah. As a result, Allah made him ‘Khalil’21.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said: “If a man desires that his papers are answered, then he should turn his face away from human beings and pray to Allah for all his needs. When the merciful Allah sees this state, He will grant his desires.
For this, it is advisable to refer to Dua No. 13 in “Sahif al-Sajjadiya” (Sahif al-Kamela) by Hazrat Imam Zainul Abedeen (a.s.) in which he has explained basic facts about ‘Asbab’ and also showed us how ‘Dua’ should be recited.
Son! Be contented which means be satisfied. In this, there is honour in this world as well as the hereafter. People of this world look down upon those who shun contentment and are dissatisfied and they do such deeds which brings retribution in the hereafter.
Contentment (satisfaction) does not mean living a life of misery when you have wealth. This is against the blessing of wealth. It is the right of your children that you should provide them with sufficient food and clothing. If someone has money’ yet he acts miserly, then it is considered against the law. The meaning of contentment is: Be happy in all circumstances and spend according to income. A rich man should spend more on clothing and food for himself and his children but he should not do Israf (Waste of money).
If poor and needy, then he should be satisfied with what he gets, and be happy with the will of Allah. Don’t reveal your secrets to anybody. Don’t inform them about your poverty. By doing this, people will look down upon you. People are worldly and when worldly people come to know about someone’s poverty, then, they are looked down and they are not respected.
It is my experience that exhibiting poverty increases poverty and results in insults. Beware, don’t reveal your secrets to anybody. Your livelihood is destined. You are bound to get it. Allah has distributed livelihood as per His ‘Maslehat.’ Neither honour and status will increase it nor contentment will decrease it. Sometimes complaining about poverty amounts to complaining about Allah. This results in the wrath of Allah and retribution in the hereafter22.
It is stated in ‘Hadith al-Kudsi’ that: By My honour and power, whosoever asks anybody else except Me, I will dash all his hopes and he will be insulted and dishonoured and I will keep him away from My bounties and blessings.
‘Modesty’ is one of the best quality. It is praiseworthy in this world as well as in the hereafter. It is said in the tradition that modesty is a part of ‘Imaan’. Modesty and Imaan are inter-wind. If modesty is lost, Imaan is also lost.
One who has four qualities will be blessed on the day of judgement even if he is a sinner from head to toe:
• good character and
• thankfulness to Allah (or Amanat)23
Son! Develop good character because it is beneficial is this world as well as hereafter. Allah has described the good character of the Holy Prophet (S) as his special attribute. Good character is half the religion24.
Good Character is a blessing from Allah25.
On the day of judgement, there will be no other good deed heavier than good character26
A man with good character is like a man who is always praying and fasting. His thawab (reward) is as much as one who is fighting in the way of Allah (Jihad)27.
Good character dissolves sins as water dissolves salt. Majority of the people going to paradise will be those who have refrained from sin (Muttaqi) and those who have good character28.
Allah has said: He is ashamed of confining the flesh of a person with good character to hell29.
Good character increases life span so much so that if in the company of a Jew, then also behave nicely30.
Son! I have seen excellent results of good character. Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) has said: If you cannot keep good financial relations with people, at least show good character by behaving nicely31.
Amirul Mu’mineen Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s.) has stated: Behave nicely with all so that they show affection towards you when you meet them and if you die, they feel sad and say ‘Inna Lillah’. Don’t behave in such a way that they have to utter, Alhamdu Lillah when you die32.
Someone asked Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.), What is the definition of good character and good behaviour? He replied, ‘Politeness, sweet speech and meeting people with courtesy33.’
The Holy Prophet (S) has said: When meeting believers, greet them with a smile. It a sign of good character. Talking politely with your enemy is courtesy. This way he is attracted towards Imaan (Islam). Even if he does not become a believer at least the believers will be saved from his (non believer) mischiefs34.
Son! Beware, don’t treat your children badly. Bad behaviour leads you towards hell. Bad manners destroy Imaan (faith) as vinegar spoils honey. When Saad bin Maaz died, seventy thousand angels took part in his funeral procession. Yet, he had to suffer ‘Fishar al-Qabr’ because he was not behaving nicely with his children35.
Cultivate forgiveness and politeness. Those with qualities of politeness and forgiveness will go to paradise without accounting for their deeds. These qualities are amongst the attributes of Allah. There are several incidents about the politeness of prophets and ‘awliyas’. Some of the traditions state that a man cannot became pious till he is polite36.
Allah loves a believer who is polite. It is one of the qualities of a momin37.
A man who has power to retaliate, yet he acts with politeness and restrain, Allah will fill his heart with pleasure and Imaan on the day of the judgement, and He will give him the right to select any ‘hoor’ he pleases. He will be given the reward of a martyr38.
To control your anger is praiseworthy in the eye’s of Allah whether you control your anger by patience or by politeness. The more you control your anger, the more Allah will bestow you with honour. When everyone will gather on the day of the judgement, a caller will announce ‘Where are those with good qualities?’ Then, one group will come forward. Angels will ask ‘What are your good qualities?’ They will reply that “We were kind to those who had cut off relations with us. We were giving to those who had denied us, forgiving those who had opposed us,” Then will hear one voice: Whatever you have said is true. Enter without accounting for you deeds39.
Forgiveness is “Zakat’ of success40.
One who is powerful enough to punish, has the maximum right to forgive41.
Son! Forgive those who have done wrong to you so that Allah may forgive your wrong-doings and elevate your status.
Beware, never get angry or excited. It is a sign of weakness of faith (Aqida). Anger destroys faith as vinegar spoils honey42.
There are four pillars of ‘Kufr’:
• anger and
is the key of all wickedness43.
By anger many intelligent man’s heart (mind) are ruined44.
Shaytan has promised that anger is his net (gallow). With this I lead the best of men astray45.
Religious scholars have suggested a few ways to control anger:
(1) Say ` Aozo Billah al-Menash Shaytanir Rajim`.
(2) Remember Allah. It is stated in ‘tauret’: Oh son of Adam ! Remember me, when you are angry so that I may remember you at the time of my ‘Gazab’ and save you from ruin. When someone oppresses you, remember my retribution. I will punish him more than you can46.
(3) If you are standing when you get angry, then sit down. If you sitting, then lie down or get up47.
(4) Change your place. While talking with Hazrat Moosa (a.s.), Shaytan said ‘whenever you are angry, change your place, otherwise I will put you in trouble’.
(5) Do wudhu’ and wash your hands and face with cold water48.
(6) If you are angry with any relative, touch your body with his body. This will pacify your anger.
(7) Drink water49.
(8) Eat kismiss (grapes). This will suppress your anger50.
(9) Recite this Dua! Allahumma-Azhib Anni Gaiza kalli wa Ajrim min muzillate fetan as-aloka gunnataka wa Auzo beka menas-shirk; Allahumma Sabitni alal huda wasthawab wajalni rezeyan marziyya gyro zalin wala mozillan.
It is stated in the traditions that whosoever suppresses his anger, Allah will forgive him on the day of the judgement. He will cover his sins and give him paradise51.
Son! Develop these two qualities. Never shun them. These qualities will save you from the fire of hell. Discarding these two qualities will result in misery.
It is stated in the traditions that one who has no bravery has no religion. The most difficult task is to do justice to yourself52.
Justice means preferring for others what you prefer for your self and preferring for others what you do not prefer for yourself.
Whenever you make a promise fulfill it. Much emphasis has been laid on it in the Holy Qur’an and Sunnat. Allah, has ordered:
…and fulfill (every) promise; surely (every) promise shall be questioned about (on the Day of Reckoning). (17:34)
The Holy Prophet (S) has said: Those who believe in Allah and hereafter, it is their duty to keep their promise53.
Hazrat Imam as-Sadiq (a.s.) has said: The promise of one believer to another believer is such a contract for which there is no ‘Kaffara’. Therefore one who goes against his promise will be deemed to have disobeyed Allah and will incur his displeasure54.
Keeping one’s promise is considered by Allah as one of the qualities of Hazrat Ismail (a.s.). Believers have been strictly warned against breaking promises. Beware, don’t say what you do not want to do. Allah does not like this at all.
Beware! Don’t promise anything, which you are not in a position to fulfil. Breaking promise will bring disrepute.
The benefits of charity are better in both the worlds. A generous person is respected everywhere, while a miser is insulted in both the worlds.
In praise of charity, suffice is to say, that Hatimtai will be protected from the heat of the fire of hell as stated by the Holy Prophet (S) to his son Adi.
Son! Miserliness brings disgrace in this world as well as hereafter. But beware! Your generosity should not be such that you are left bankrupt.
Adopt the middle path. Find your way of life between miserliness and squandering.
Son! May Allah give you ‘Taufik’ to do good deeds and protect you from all evils. Remove the love of this world from the heart. It is a deadly poison - a fatal disease. It distances you from Allah’s blessings and plunges you in the fire of hell
The best way to remove the love of this world from the heart is to think that if it was a good thing, then Allah would not have deprived His prophets and ‘Walis’ of it, even though they were extremely intelligent. They used to distance themselves from it as if they were running away from a lion1.
Allah has criticised the love of this world in many different Ayaats and it has been strongly emphasized in many traditions.
Hazrat Imam Zainul Abedeen (a.s.) has said: The best deed is to desist from the love of this world. There are different ways of loving this world. One of them is ‘Pride’ in which Iblis got lost. One of the ways of loving this world is ‘greed’ as a result of which hawa invited Adam to eat wheat. One is ‘jealousy’ as a result of which Kabil killed Habil. After these, there is love of woman, love of this world, love of power, love of luxury, lust for wealth etc. etc. Out of these, love of this world is the root of all evils2.
Reliable tradition, have strongly warned against the love of this world. Many, tradition have stressed that the love of this world results in forgetting the hereafter and causing loss in the hereafter.
This world and hereafter are like two wives who cannot stay together in one house3.
This world and the next world are poles apart like north and south. One who nears one pole distance from the other pole4.
This world and the next would are like fire and water which can never mix. Really speaking, the love of this world is a kind of ‘shirk’. This means that a person has no faith in the hereafter and does not believe in the Holy Qur’an and Sunnat. What is the meaning of love of this world if you have no faith in the hereafter?
Son! Cultivate ‘Zohad’. Stay away from doing deeds forbidden by Allah because there is a likelihood of the wrath of Allah. Desist from doubts because there is a possibility of punishment. You will have to account even for your ‘Halal’ income so be ready for it. Have only those desires which are permissible by religion e.g. Nikah. Then be satisfied with minimum. Keep your dress and food simple. Keep in mind the hereafter so that you can derive the pleasure of the hereafter.
Remember ‘Zohad’ does not mean abstaining from food and drink. It mean to be happy with fate and adopting a middle path in distress.
Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) has stated:‘Zohad’ does not mean destruction of wealth and calling ‘Halal’ as ‘Haram’. Zohad only means
that you should have trust in Allah in whatever wealth He gives. You should not trust anybody else more than Allah5.
Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s.) has said: “The meaning of Zohad in this world is to have few hopes and desires, thanking Allah for his blessings and to desist from doing forbidden deeds6.”
Son! Pray through the medium of the Holy Hrophet (S) and his progeny. The conclusion derived from many a traditions is that Allah has forgiven ‘tark al-Awla’ of prophets because of their ‘wasila’.
After creating Hazrat Adam (a.s.) and after putting the ‘Noor’ of Masoomeem (a.s) in his back, the ‘Sajda’ that the angels did was really a sajda to Allah. It was done at His command. This was Allah’s worship, respect of Muhammad (S) and his progeny and obedience of Hazrat Adam (a.s.).
When Hazrat Adam (a.s.) asked Allah ‘Whose noor in this?’ He replied: “They are the best of creations, best amongst the believers, through them I give to everyone and also distribute ‘Thawab - Azaab’ through them. Adam, make them wasila (medium) so that all your problems are solved. I have decided that I will not disappoint those who ask through them. I will not refuse their requests.”
After that, Hazrat Yaqub (a.s.), Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) etc. had made them wasila and their prayers were answered7.
Son! Keep in mind the tragedy of Sayyidush Shohada (a.s.). Daily, do as much ‘Azadari’ as possible. If you cannot do it, at least collect your family members and recite their ‘Masaeb’, because Hazrat Imam Husain (a.s) is very dear to Allah. He has attained the exalted position of a martyr. He sacrificed his all in Allah’s path. Through their Wasila, best of both the worlds could be attained. Recite Ziarat –e-Imam Husain (a.s) at least once a day. If possible, go to Karbala every month. If that is not possible, you must go to Karbala on the following seven occasions:
(1) Shab al-ashura and Roz al-Ashura
(2) Arbaeen (20th Safar)
(3) 1st Rajab
(4) 15th Rajab
(5) 15th Shaban
(6) Shab al-Idul-Fitr
(7) Day of Arafa8
If that is not possible, you must go at least once a year9.
There are innumerable effects of ziarat. I have seen such beneficial effects of ‘ziarat’ and ‘Azadari’ that it is mind boggling. Whenever I have done ziarat of Hazrat Imam Husain (a.s), my minimum experience is that my one or the other problem has been solved and my wealth has increased. Besides, the ‘Thawab’ you get is bonus. There is maximum of ‘Thawab10’.
Son! May Allah give you ‘Tawfeeq’ to do good deeds and keep you alive till old age respect your elders. Allah will save you from calamities by their blessings11.
Be careful never make them unhappy otherwise the result would be bad.
As far as possible, respect your parents. Treat them nicely because the Holy Qur’an and traditions have laid great emphasis on it. Don’t be lax or lazy in this duty. Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) has said: When Hazrat Yaqub (a.s.) came to Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.), he (Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) did not get down from mount to welcome Hazrat Yaqub (a.s). The result of this ‘Tark al-Awla’ was that Hazrat Jibraeel came down and extracted one ‘Noor’ from the palm of Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.). Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) asked ‘What is this?’ The reply he got was ‘Now there will be no prophethood in your progeny because you did not welcome your father properly. Therefore, Allah has finished the continuity of prophethood from your progeny12.)
(It is evident that these type of traditions are meant to show the importance of character improvement. As a matter of fact, the decision of prophethood is made in the initial stage only and is not dependant on the respect.)
Give due respect to Aalims who practice what they preach. They are the minarets of religion and yes, run away from an Alim who does not practice (what he preaches) as if you are running away from a lion. According to Imam’s order, they are not alims. They have harmed the religion more than the army of Yazid bin Moawiya.13
Son! Give respect and reverence to the progeny of the Holy Prophet (S) because they are from the family of Janab al-Fatema (a.s.) and Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s.). Allah has decreed that you love them. As far as possible give them due respect because Allah’s will and good of both the world lie in it14.
Remember their respect should not be confined only to ‘saadaat’ with good character. This order of respect is not meant for ‘Alims’ who do not practice Islam. They don’t deserve respect. But here we are talking about descendants of the Holy Prophet (S) Therefore, their respect is a must. However if by not showing respect, there is likehood of their returning to right path. Then don’t respect them. This is one way of ‘Nahi-anil-munkar’.
However, it is better that you respect them in public and advise them in private as in the incident of Ahmed bin Ishak Ashari. Once Husaini bin Hasan Fatemi came to meet him. Since Husain was a drunkard, he refused to meet him. Then, when he was going for Haj pilgrimage, on the way to Samarra, he met Hazrat Imam Askari (a.s.). But Imam did not give him audience. After many request and pleadings when he met the Imam, then Ahmed asked: ‘Son of the prophet, why are you displeased with me?’
The Imam replied: ‘Why did you not meet Husaini bin Hasan?’ Ahmad replied: ‘My intention was to prevent him from drinking wine’. The Imam said: ‘You are right. That is what is meant by ‘Nahi-anil-Mumkar’ but as far as respect for them is concerned, there should be no change.’
Ibne Ishaq kept this is mind and after returning from Haj he gave due respect to Husaini bin Hasan. He got frightened and asked the reason. Ahmed gave him the reason. This made so much impact on him that he asked for Allah’s forgiveness and broke all the wine glasses and threw them. He died in the mosque during ‘Aaiteqaf’15.
Remember, this advice is not meant for non Fatemi ‘Sadat’ though being Hashemi they also deserve respect but they are not family members of the Holy Prophet (S). Whenever in doubt, be cautious. Of course, those who are sayyid from mother’s side also deserve respect because they are children of the daughter. Imam Hasan (a.s.) and Imam Husain (a.s.) are prophet’s children because of this relation. People with this type of relations are not entitled to ‘Khums’. According to one reliable tradition from Jamad bin Isa, only those who are sayyid from father’s side are entitled ‘Khums’. Otherwise, they are equal as far respect is concerned. Both should be respected.
Son, keep good relations with your relatives. This increases your life span as well as
wealth. Many many benefits are derived in this world as well as hereafter. Even if they break off relation, you continue keeping good relations with them. Amirul Mu’minin (a.s.) has said that show compassion to those who have broken off relations with you, results in more rewards and ‘Thawab’. This protects you from falling prey to desires.
Beware, never fail to show compassion. I have seen many good results of compassions and I have also experienced wonderful effects of keeping relations with those who have broken off relations. Therefore don’t be careless in this regard and maintain proper relations.
Take care of our shia brothers living in poverty. Take special care of neighbours and relatives. In it, there is honour in this world as well as hereafter. Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) has said: The separation of Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) from Hazrat Yaqub (a.s.) was caused because once he killed a sheep and consumed it without inquiring about his neighbours, when one of his neighbours was hungry16.
(This is one type of ‘Tark al-awla’ in which the test of prophet becomes very severe. Therefore, whenever you utilize any blessing of Allah, take care of the needs of others, otherwise you also might be tested sometime – Jawadi).
Son! Adopt the middle path in all your deeds. The results would be better and the future praiseworthy. Allah has ordered his prophet (S) not to squander but adopt middle path.
Son! Take care of people under you and thank Allah that you are better off than them. Don’t look at those who are better-off than you, otherwise you will feel sad and you will lose the happiness of this world and ‘Thawab’ of the hereafter.
Son! As far as possible don’t develop very close contact with people because this may result in your becoming forgetful about truth and death. It also gives you less time for prayers. You don’t get a chance to acquire religious knowledge or to remember and ponder about Allah. You are tempted to know about people’s affairs. You are compelled to listen to back-biting (Gibat) and allegations, sometimes you are forced to mix with useless people and get involved in unnecessary disputes and fights. As a result, you will repent on the day of Judgement. Beware, before it is too late.
Remember, always oppose the desires of the heart. Following the desires of the heart is fatal poison. Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s.) has said: The biggest threat is from following the desires of the heart and having high hopes. Desires of the heart desist you from right (truth) and high hopes make you forget the hereafter17.
At another place, he has said: Save yourself from desires in such a way as if you are protecting yourself from an enemy. There is no other enemy more powerful than the desires of the heart. All types of calamities are born out of the desires of the heart18.
Son! Don’t worry about evening in the morning or about morning in the evening. Otherwise hopes will make you complacent. Imagine yourself as a dead body lying in front of people who are readying to give you “Ghusl”.
After you have became ‘Baligh’ prepare your will. As and when it becomes necessary to change the will, then make the necessary changes and alterations Write down what you have to repay and what you have to receive. There were several incidents when, lying in bed, during severe winter, I remembered having taken a loan of one or two dirhrams. Then I would get up from bed, write it down and go to sleep – lest I die before repaying the loan! If the creditor does not ask then the burden of debt remains on me.
If the creditor demands, then my inheritors may ask for proof, oath or document, which would prove bothersome for him, while in fact he has obliged me by giving a loan. The reward of obligation is not that he should be asked to prove his claim. If he does not produce any proof and if my inheritors do not pay him, then I would be responsible on the day of judgement (therefore, it is necessary to note down your debts).
Son! Whenever you take or give a loan, then, as per the dictates of the Holy Qur’an, put it down in writing and get it attested by witnesses. Anyone who deviates one word from the laws of Shariat will repent. There is some purpose or reason behind every law of Allah. Therefore, beware, don’t consider these laws trival or useless.
May Allah give you long life and improve your deeds. Obey the laws, principles, etc. of shariat. Your every action – the way you live, do wudhu’ (ablution), ghusl, eating, drinking, sleeping, awakening, inter course, dress, house – all should be according to the orders of shariat. These laws have not been made without reason. By obeying these commandments you will be benefited in this world as well as in the next. Don’t be lax or lazy in their obedience. I will soon collect these orders in the form of a book so that you may not have to search for them. Yes, your responsibility is to implement these orders in your life.
Son! Always, every Mu’mint, remember Allah. Remembrance of Allah increases your life span and wealth, saves you from calamities, distances you from Shaytan and brings you near to Allah.
Masoom (a.s.) has stated: “The identity of our shia is that he always remembers Allah in solitude. Whosoever remembers Allah, Allah befriends him. He is saved from “Nifaq” and hell and is rewarded with a place in paradise. Those in paradise will never repent, except for the Mu’mints which they had passed without remembering Allah – otherwise their position in paradise would have been more exalted.
Son! Not sitting (meeting) should be without the remembrance of Allah, Imam (a.s) has said: If there is no remembrance of ours and Allah in any meeting, then those attending the meeting are liable to befall calamities19.
Here, it is essential to understand, that ‘remembrance’ does not mean uttering Allah’s name by tongue but it means ‘remembrance’ through heart which begins with the tongue. Allah made Hazrat Ibrahim (a.s.) his “Khalil” because he used to remember Allah very much. Remembrance of Allah sincerely through heart earns seventy times more “Thawab” than by tongue only20.
Son! Ask for Allah’s forgiveness every morning. Recite 100 times ‘Masha Allaho la Hawla wala Quwwata Illa Billah Astagfirullah’ and 10 times ‘Subhanallahe wal hamdo lillahe wala elaha illallaho wallaho akbar’ every morning.
While coming out of the house, keep on end of ‘Amama’ loose and recite this prayer ‘Bismillahe wabillahe Amanto billah masha Allaho lahawla wala quwwata illa billahe tawakkalto alallah21.
When you see some incident, don’t start asking questions. When Hazrat Dawood (a.s.) saw Lookman Hakim making ‘Zirah’ (protecting clothing) he thought of asking about it, but his common sense prevented him from asking and he kept quiet. After he had finished making ‘Zirah’, he wore it and said: Zirah is the best protection in war. Then Hazrat said: Silence is a great virtue but very few practice it.
Son, do all your ‘sunnat’ prayers in seclusion so that there is no possibility of ‘Riyakari’ (show-off), when amongst people say ‘La Elaha Illallah,’ because it is the best remembrance of Allah. Besides, you can recite it silently. All the alphabets are ‘Sakit’ (No ‘Makhraj’ is necessary to recite it. Then it is called ‘Zikre al-Khafi). Even the thawab is also seventy times more.
Son, recite as much as possible ‘La Elaha Illallha La Hawla Wala Quwwata Illa Billahil Aliyyil Azim Sallallaho Ala Muhammadin Wa Ale-hit Taherin.’ These words have wonderful effect to make ‘Shaitain’ run away from you. Recite all the Duas said by Masoomeen (a.s.) even through it may be once in a lifetime.
Do those deeds which they have done, even though you may be able to do them once. Every deed has its effect and every dua has its benefits. Why deprive yourself of those rewards and benefits. Prayers and duas can be compared to fruits. When a man enters an orchard, he wishes to taste each and every fruit. Similarly, when he enters the orchard of prayers, he should enjoy the taste of each and every prayer and dua.
Son, recite some portion of the Holy Qur’an everyday specially at dawn and think over its meaning, so that you can act on its commands. Read the Tafsir (detailed interpretation) done by Masoomeen (a.s.) so that you can understand its deep significance.
Son, as far as possible, remain with ‘Taharat’. Taharat is Mu’min’s defence against Shaytan. It helps you to answer your prayers, increases your life, wealth and honour. It improves your health, keeps you happy and mentally alert. Wudhu’ is half Imaan22
As long as Mu’min is with Wudhu’, he gets the thawab of ‘Taakibat23.’
One who dies with Taharat, dies a martyr’s death24.
One who sleeps with wudhu’, gets the thawab of whole nights’ prayer25.
One who goes to bed with wudhu’, his bed takes the place of a mosque26.
During a dream, the Ruh (Soul) of a Mu’min travels to ‘Mal al-Aala’ (upper world). Therefore it is essential that he is with wudhu’ so that he makes himself deserving of meeting with Allah and also get Barkat.
Son, at the time of ‘waswasa’ from Shaytan, recite “Auozo Billah’ and Bismillah’ and then say: Aamanto Billahe wa Rosolehi Mukhlessan Lahud-deen.’
Son, pray all your Salat (prayer) at the earliest time. It is better as well as it relieves you of your responsibility. It gives rest to your body and peace to your Ruh (Soul). It is stated in the traditions that no deed is accepted till the prayers are recited. So recite prayers at the earliest so that all your deeds are accepted and your wealth is increased27.
Pray all the nafila (Sunnat) of day and night even though in a short form. The performance of nafila prayers completes the compulsory prayers. From experience, it is observed that by praying night’s nafila there is increase in wealth and by praying zohr and Asr nafila guidance to the right path is facilitated.
Beware! Don’t leave nafila prayers on the excuse that you are busy and you have no time. Nafila will be helpful in your work - not an impediment. The purpose of knowledge is action. It is meaningless to leave action for knowledge.
Son! Always pray compulsory Salat (prayer) with Jamat whether you are Imaam or mamoom. There is a lot of thawab. See that you are not deprived of this thawab. It is stated in the traditions that by praying with Jamat, the thawab is multiplied 150 times. As the people praying with jamat increases, so also thawab increases. So much so that if there is a big congregation, jinns and human beings collectively cannot count its thawab.
Punctually recite ‘Tasbihe-Zehra (a.s.)’ after Salat (prayer). Do ‘Sajd al-Shukr’ without fail. Whenever you are in trouble, put down your head on the ground with the intention of ‘Sajd al-Shukr’ and recite the dua which Hazrat Jibraeel had shown to Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) to get him released from prison.
Keep fast on first and last Thursday of the month as well as middle Wednesday. This is equal to fasting the whole life.
Recite ‘Qulhowallah’ at least 3 times a day. This is equal to completing the recitation of one Holy Qur’an. It is on the strength of the traditions that Hazrat Salman had proudly stated that he is fasting daily, he is praying the whole night and he is completing the recitation of the Holy Qur’an daily. When Umar objected to this, Hazrat Salman replied: By keeping 3 fasts a month, I collect thawab of one month’s fasting, by sleeping with Wudhu’, I earn the thawab of a whole night prayer and by reciting ‘Qulhowallah’ thrice a day I earn the thawab of completing the recitation of the Holy Qur’an daily. The Holy Prophet (S) agreed with Hazrat Salman’s statements.
Son, if you go to some Mu’min’s house while keeping a sunnat fast and if he invites you for food, eat with them without declaring that you are fasting. If you declare that you are fasting, then you are obliging him by giving thawab of Iftar which is against the spirit of hospitality. Allah will give the thawab of one year’s fasting if you do iftar without declaring your fast28.
Regularly read advices and ahadith. Read and review them at least one hour daily. You will see many results and benefits of this act. The heart comes alive and desires (nafs al-ammara) are controlled.
Son, never eat in excess. By this, you will become lazy.
It is stated in the tradition that Shaytan comes very close to human being when his stomach in full29.
Allah does not like a man with full stomach30.
The most harmful thing for a Mu’min is to eat to the full. Always keep 1/3 stomach empty for water, 1/3 for breathing and fill up 1/3 with food. This is good for health and body31.
Beware! Don’t think that you will get more strength by eating more. Beware, strength depends on your digestive power not on the quantity of food.
Don’t eat unless you are hungry. Otherwise it may result in indigestion, leprosy and mental deficiency32.
Beware, don’t sleep too much. This results in waste of precious life. This does not mean that you should do Ibadat leaving aside all things. All work should be done as much as necessary – not excessively. Take food that suits the climate.
Son, don’t laugh too much. It kills your heart and destroys the glow on your face. To avoid laughter, look at your thumb. This will stop your laughter and kaffara of laughter is ‘Allahumma La Tamkutni.’
There is no restriction on mild laughter. It is a sign of good nature. It is praiseworthy. The Holy Prophet (S) used to smile faintly.
Polite nature is a good thing. Aimme Masoomeen (a.m.s.) always used to behave politely. They used to teach their followers also to behave politely. There is lot of thawab in pleasing a Mu’min.
Son, don’t be happy when someone is killed. Hazrat Imam Reza (a.s.) has said: If one is pleased with the action of someone, than he is counted as one who has committed the act37.
It is stated that if a Mu’min is killed in the east and if someone staying in west is pleased, then he also will be counted as a killer. It is for this reason that Imam al-Asr (a.s.) will take revenge of the martyrdom of Imam Husain (a.s.) after his reappearance, so that his ancestors are pleased38.
Son, save yourself from back-biting and making allegations. It results in lessening of good deeds and increase in bad deeds. The good deeds of back-biter is transferred to one whom you are back-biting and his bad deeds are transferred to the back-biter. Thus, back-biter loses both ways39.
Save yourself from jealousy because the deeds of jealous person do not reach even upto sixth heaven. They are thrown back at his face. He is disappointed in both the worlds – In this world because of jealousy and in the next world because of punishment.
To know the bad result of jealousy, it is suffice to say that Shaytan was dishonoured because of jealousy. The brothers of Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) faced insult and dishonor because of jealousy40.
One who is jealous cannot become a leader41.
Jealousy eats faith as fire eats wood.
Beware, don’t criticize acts of Allah. Don’t say ‘Today it is too hot or cold’ or say ‘how I wish I was rich’, ‘how I wish I was cured of the disease’ or ‘how I wish I was given a son instead of a daughter’. Saying all these things are like criticizing Allah. These are included in ‘Hidden Shirk’.
Son, never ask for things which harms you, e.g. God, give me death or take away my life. All these are against the will of Allah.
Beware, don’t sin because of someone’s threat, because there is salvation and ‘Aafiyat’ in desisting from sin. Didn’t you see that when Hazrat Yusuf (a.s.) did not fall to the temptations of Zulekha, Allah rewarded him with kingdom of Egypt.
Son, never speak lies. It displeases Allah and dishonours the liar. No one trusts a liar. His words and deeds are not trust-worthy. As far as possible, avoid ‘Toria’42
“Toria” is not a lie but there is salvation in truth. Many a times it has been witnessed that Allah had averted serious calamities because of truthfulness.
Don’t ever utter words by which someone learns to speak lies. What I mean is that Mu’min should desist from speaking such words which give others a chance to create false stories.
Beware, never taunt someone’s misfortune because the deeds of one who taunts are thrown back on his face. Also, it is feared that Allah may bring the same misfortune on him.
Beware, never do deeds which make you stone-hearted (cruel) because stone-heartedness is the worst of all things (may be, at the end of this book, we will throw light on the reasons of stone heartedness).
Always stay away from pride (arrogance). I have often seen that Allah insults and disgraces one who is arrogant. Arrogance results in failure, disappointment, insult and disrepute.
Allah does not like such proud people who walk arrogantly; the earth and the sky curses such people43.
An arrogant man is an enemy of good people44.
Arrogance and pride results in madness and foolishness. Otherwise what is the cause of a man’s arrogance? He should remember his beginning and end. In the beginning he was a drop of ‘najis’ sperm and in the end he is going to die. After this what reason does he have for arrogance45?
It is said in the tradition that there is an excreta in one’s stomach so that his pride gets destroyed. One who carries such dirt in ones stomach, why should he be proud46?
Son, stay away from arrogance-pride. Don’t wear dress which touches the ground. It gives rise to pride and it deprives one even of the scent of heaven47.
The grave of such a type of man falls in hell and his fate is linked with Qarun. Qarun was also sucked in the ground48.
If you keep sitting when others get up out of respect, it is a kind of arrogance. One who sits out of pride, and excepts others to stand around him, Allah considers him as one of the inmates of hell49.
(Those in power and elders, keep this in mind – Jawadi)
Aimme-masoomeen (a.m.s.) have shown the remedy for arrogance (pride). Patched clothes, old shoes, dirt-filled face, personally carrying provisions from bazaar, riding ordinary animal and the company of poor and destitute, and they have adopted this way of life50.
Allah has snatched away blessings from those who are proud. Everyone knows the fate of Shaytan. His pride and arrogance on one occasion deprived him of such a blessing like nearness to Allah. So beware, save yourself from such a cruel fate
Son, cultivate humility, politeness. It is beneficial in both the worlds. It is said in the tradition that politeness raises one’s status51.
Politeness increases your wisdom52.
Politeness is the fruit of concentration, fear of Allah and modesty53.
Allah is proud of those who are polite and humble. He has appointed one angel for every person, and he has put the angel in control of his head. Whenever he raises his head in arrogance, the angel brings it down, and whenever he bows his head in politeness, the angel raises his head54.
Hazrat Moosa (a.s.) was made ‘Qaleem’ by Allah because of his polite and humble nature. He put down his head in dust so Allah made his the most exalted and supreme in the world.
Son, don’t consider anybody small. It is an insult of Allah.
Stay away from greed - temptation. It was through temptation that Janab al-Hawa was persuaded to eat wheat. Otherwise, was there any shortage of anything in heaven! She proposed the same thing to Janab al-Adam (a.s.).
Beware, don’t be self-centered because it destroys your good deeds. Don’t you know that a companion of Hazrat Isa (a.s.) started walking on water by saying ‘Bismillah’; and in the midst of water he thought ‘Now I have also become like Hazrat Isa’ and he started drowning. He complained. Hazrat Isa (a.s.) saved him. When he asked the reason for drowning, Hazrat Isa (a.s.) said it was because of his self praise and arrogance. He was asked to beg for Allah’s forgiveness. He begged Allah for forgiveness and again he started walking on water by saying ‘Bismillah55.’
Son, desist from show off. It is like doing ‘Shirk’. It is said in the tradition that one who does deeds to show-off to others (except Allah), Allah will return it to him on the day of judgement.
‘Show off people will be called by 4 names on the day of the judgement. “Fajir”, trailor, kafir and ‘Khasaratkar’. His deeds will be useless and he will not get any reward. In the end, his deeds will be given to one whom he wanted to show-off56.
It is related in some tradition that when a person does a small deed for Allah, Allah magnifies it in the eyes of Mu’mins and if a person does a big deed to show-off, then Allah makes his deed small even though he might have become tired by keeping awake the whole night57.
It is against common sense that a man offers prayers to Allah in public while in reality he is praying to show others except Allah. What is the benefit of such prayers, which is to show public? Poor man, who cannot kill a mosquito, what he can give to others? One who cannot snatch a thing which a bee has taken away, what one can hope from him? What would you gain by pleasing him?
Don’t be dejected or disappointed. It is a Greater Sin to be unmindful about the curse of Allah and to be dejected about the blessings of Allah. Not only Allah is disappointed but it amounts to insult of Allah.
I have seen some people whom Shaytan had made them sinners. But Shaytan is not satisfied with it, he also make these sinners lose hope in the blessings of Allah, thereby depriving them of asking forgiveness of Allah. As a result, they are doubly sinners. They became sinners and also lost hope in the forgiveness of Allah.
Son! If Shaytan puts ‘waswasa’ in your heart and instigates you to oppose Allah, don’t forget to ask for Allah’s forgiveness. Immediately ask for Allah’s forgiveness. Repentance destroys sins58.
Always ask for Allah’s forgiveness. God knows, when you may sin without being aware of it.
Son! Remember, ‘Tawbah’ does not mean asking for Allah’s forgiveness and then continue sinning. This is not ‘Tawbah’. It is like making fun of Allah. ‘Tawbah consists of 6 things:
(1) To repent for previous sins.
(2) To make firm resolution that in future he will desist from committing such sins.
(3) To give people their rights, dues and if he has done ‘ghibat’ then to ask for forgiveness.
(4) If he has failed in performing his duties, then to do ‘qaza’.
(5) To reduce, by crying, the flesh which has developed in the body by ‘Haram’ money, so much so that only skeleton remains and then flesh develops anew.
(6) To bear as much hardship in the obedience of Allah as he had derived from committing a sin.
‘Tawbah’ is complete after acting on these conditions. This is called ‘Tawbah al-Kamela59’
Remember, it is Allah’s mercy on the ‘Ummat’ of the Holy Prophet (S) that He has promised to forgive anyone who asks for His forgiveness. Otherwise, the laws of forgiveness were so harsh in olden days that man cannot imagine it.
Amirul-Mu’mineen (a.s.) has said in the explanation of last ayat of Sur al-Baqara that Allah has substantially reduced the burden of this ‘Ummat’. In the olden days, sins were written on the doors. For forgiveness, one had to shun the pleasures of life. However for this ‘Ummat’, eating-drinking is not forbidden. In previous ‘Ummat’ small ‘azaab’ was sent even after asking forgiveness for 50-80 or 100 years. Now, ‘azaab’ is removed for ever by asking forgiveness for some minutes even though man had committed sins for years60.
(In this tradition innumerable blessings have been mentioned. It will be very useful to read ‘Tafseer al-Safi’ on this subject – Jawadi)
Allah has made forgiveness so easy that it is mentioned in the traditions: After killing 99 men, a man asked one pious man whether his repentance will be accepted. The pious man replied: “No”. So he killed him and went to an Alim’. The alim replied: “Allah is Arrahmanir Rahim, you can still ask for forgiveness provided you go to a particular place where there is a prophet of Allah and ask for forgiveness.”
The man set out in search of the prophet. It so happened that he died on the way. Allah sent his two angels of ‘Rehmat’ and ‘Azaab’. One angel said that he is sinner. Other said he was on his way to ask for forgiveness. Allah ordered that the distance from the ground of sin and the ground of forgiveness should be measured. The distance from the ground of forgiveness was some inches lesser. Allah ordered that the angel of ‘Rehmat’ should take him because he was nearer to ‘Tawbah’. It is mentioned in some traditions that Allah reduced the distance because the thought of ‘Tawbah’ is the greatest ‘Tawbah’.
(It is worth remembering that this type of examples are only to make us understand. Otherwise, angels do not make any movement without Allah’s permission. – Jawadi)
Allah is very kind and merciful. He has kept open the gates of Tawbah. He befriends those who repent and ask for his forgiveness61.
It is mentioned in some traditions that when a Mu’min seeks Allah’s forgiveness, Allah is more happy than a man who finds his lost animal because it is easier for a lost animal to return than for a man to ask for His forgiveness62.
Son, ask for forgiveness. Always ask for forgiveness immediately after sinning. Repent, so that you do not miss the opportunity and before Allah’s wrath descends. Beware, don’t, be lazy in seeking His pardon. Delay may invite all sorts of troubles. May be ‘malekul maut’ may come and you may not get time to seek His pardon.
Sin is like a small plant. In the beginning you can pluck it out of the ground easily, other wise the roots will go deep into the solid and it will be difficult to pluck it out of the ground. It is the same with sin. If you repent and ask for forgiveness immediately, then it is good, otherwise sinning becomes a habit and it may be too late to ask for forgiveness.
It is stated in the traditions that, after sinning, Allah gives 7 hours, 9 hours or 1 day’s time before his sin is written down63.
If he does not ask for forgiveness during this period, then his sin is written down and ‘Tawbah’ becomes difficult afterwards.
By seeking His pardon, life span and wealth increases, also overall condition improves. Beware, don’t be lazy in seeking His forgiveness, otherwise you may be deprived of all His blessings.
Son! May Allah bless you with wealth and piety. Always be patient during calamity. Allah told Hazrat Moosa (a.s.) that whenever you see the world coming towards you, recite. ‘Inna Lillahe was Inna Eleyhe Rajeoon’. ‘It is a curse which is coming towards you. Whenever you see the world turning against you, then welcome poverty. This is a sign of a good Mu’min64.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said: Poverty is one of the wealth of nature. Poverty is such a blessing which is given to prophets and Mu’mins. Poverty is an honour and respect from Allah65.
Poverty is the decoration of a Mu’min66.
Majority of those in paradise will be those who were poor in this world. Very few wealthy men and women will be in heaven. The more a man advances in ‘Imaan’, the more he experiences wealth – crunch67.
From amongst the prophets, Hazrat Sulaiman (a.s.) will be the last to enter paradise. He will have to give account of his whole kingdom. To be patient when hungry is a ‘Jihad’ It is better than 60 years ‘Ibadaat’. Poor people will enter paradise 500 years earlier than rich people (which is half a day of ‘Kayamat’). In paradise, there will be rooms of ‘Yaqut’. Paradise dwellers will look at them in awe and wonder. These rooms will be inhabited by prophets, shias and poor Mu’mins. Poor people will be the king of paradise. Everyone will be anxious to enter paradise but paradise will be anxious for poor people.
Allah will behave in such a way with poor Mu’mins as one Mu’min behaves with another Mu’min. One ‘Munadi’ will shout ‘Where are poor Mu’mins’ Then some people will come forward. Allah will say ‘I swear by my honour, grandeur and exalted position that I had not deprived you of worldly luxuries because I considered you dishonourable. I have preserved all your ‘Nemaats’ here. See, anyone who has done a small favour to you, then you can take him to paradise with you.
Son, remember, there are certain conditions for praiseworthy poverty:
(1) First condition is that he should live such a controlled life that people consider him rich. Don’t complaint about your poverty or your needs to people. When you are desperately in need, then ask some reliable friend or brother Mu’min provided you hope that he will satisfy your needs. Otherwise it is better to hide your condition because in this way, the responsibility of Allah to provide you will increase. Otherwise Allah will hand you over to those to whom you had complained and people will also consider you dishonorable68.
Janab al-Lukman had advised his son: Son! I have tasted worms and barks of trees but they are not as bitter as poverty. Therefore, if you become poor, don’t tell people. Otherwise they will insult you and will not be of any help to you. In such a condition, turn towards Allah. He is more powerful to improve your condition. Is there anyone who has asked Him and He has not granted his wish? Is there anyone who has put this faith in Him and He has not freed him of his calamities69?
(2) Second condition is contentment which has been described previosely.
(3) Third condition is patience and to be pleased with Allah’s will. About this, Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) has said that Hazrat Jibrael came to the Holy Prophet (S) and said: “Allah has sent a present to you which He has not given to any other prophet. That preset is ‘Patience’. Better present than this is ‘contentment’ and the best present is ‘Reza’, Reza means not to be disappointed whether Allah gives or not, not to be satisfied with little effort but to strive more and more70.
Son, it is a very big blessing to be pleased with Allah’s ‘Reza’, It is stated in Hadith al-Qudsi that ‘One who is not patient when a calamity sent by Me befalls him, who is not happy with My will, he should search for some other god and should get out of My domain71.’
Son! Cultivate Allah’s ‘Reza’ and let your soul be pleased with this decisions. Never be displeased nor complain.
(4) The fourth condition is that you thank Allah in all conditions - in comfort and in hardship, in wealth and poverty. Allah has mentioned patience along with thankfulness in the Holy Qur’an. He has promised bounties and favours to those who thank him. He has warned of ‘Azaab’ to those who are ungrateful to him.
(5) Fifth condition is that he should be eager and ready for poverty and hunger. He should welcome them considering their benefits. He should also ponder over the fact that wealthy man like Qarun was devoured by earth while a poor man like Hazrat Isa (a.s.) was raised to Heaven.
(6) Sixth condition is that never make insinuations against Allah.
(7) Seventh condition is that stay away from ‘Haram’ and insincere talks. Stay away from ‘Haram’ even during poverty and hunger.
(8) Eighth condition is - Do Allah’s ‘Amr’ and ‘Nahi’. Don’t be lax in your prayers because of poverty. As far as possible do charity even when you are needy.
(9) Ninth condition is – don’t keep the company of rich people Don’t respect them because of their wealth. It is stated in the tradition that if someone respects a rich man for his wealth, his 1/3 religion is destroyed. In other traditions it is stated that may be ½ religion or 2/3 religion is destroyed72.
One who bows down to a rich man’s wealth, he is not entitled to paradise. But he will be called enemy of Allah’s prophet. Neither his prayers will be accepted nor his desires fulfilled.
Son! Desist from acts which bring poverty, sorrow and decrease one’s life-span. Do such deeds that increase wealth and life-span.
May Allah count you amongst Mu’minneem and save you from the mischief of ‘Munafekeen’. Every Mu’min has right over other Mu’min. The discharge from this right is either by fulfilling your obligation or obtaining forgiveness. Otherwise you will have to answer on the day of the judgement and ‘Hashr-nashr’ will be decided accordingly.
May Allah give you ‘Tawfeeq’ to earn His will and pleasure. May your future be better than past. I advice you to obtain religious education. The performance of obligatory deeds and desistance from “Haram’ deed mainly depends on it. Besides, to obtain religious education is a matter of great importance, honour and prestige.
It is the education which differentiates a man from an animal. Every thing are of 2 types. One is of progress-going ahead and the other is stagnation. Of these two, one who progresses (goes ahead) is better than one who is stagnant. There are 2 types of progress-One is emotional and the other is without emotion. It is evident that one who is emotional is better than one without emotion. There are two types of emotional people. One is a scholar and the other is an illiterate. It is crystal clear that an educated is better than an uneducated and a scholar is better than an illiterate. Therefore, education is the best and highest of all.
According to the work of the ‘Musaffirs,’ ‘Sur al-Iqra’ was the first sura to be sent. In this sura, Allah has declared that after creating man, he was taught everything. Thus, after the blessing of life, blessing of education is mentioned. This proves that education is the best blessing of the whole world. The biggest honour that Allah has bestowed on man is that from ‘Alaq’ (clot of blood), he rose him to the exalted position of a learned person.
It is stated in ‘Sura al-Zumar’: Can an educated and illiterate be equal? Never. Only an intelligent person can understand that the position of an educated is far superior to that of an illiterate.
It is mentioned is ‘Sura al-Fatir’: Amongst the Mu’mins, only’ Alims’ are afraid of Allah.
In addition to this, are some ayaats, Alims are mentioned along with Him which is the best proof of respect and honour. Traditions also mention the importance of education
Abdulla Bin Maymun Kaddah, through Hazrat Imam Ja’far Sadiq (a.s.) has narrated a tradition of the Holy Prophet (S): One who walks on the path of religion, Allah guides him to the path of paradise, the angels spread their wings below his feet. All living beings in heaven and earth including fishes in ocean, pray for him, The status of an ‘Abid’ as compared to an ‘Alim’ is that of stars as compared to full moon. Alims are the inheritors of the prophet.
Prophets do not leave dirham-dinar as legacy, their legacy is education. One who inherits this, he has obtained a lot.
Asbagh bin Nabata has narrated from Amirul Mu’mineen Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s.) that obtain ilm. It’s learning is a pious deed, discussion is its rosary (Tasbih), argument is its jihad and teaching is its sadqa. Through education one can understand Haram-Halal. You can obtain paradise through education.
Education is a friend in loneliness, helper in loneliness, mental peace in war. Allah has made some people ‘leaders of good deeds` by education. Look at their good deeds and follow them. Education is the life of the heart, light of the eye, strength of the body and destination of pious people. Through education, you obey Allah’s orders, you can understand the exalted position of Allah and his oneness. Through education, you realize the importance of kindness, Halal and Haram. Education is Imam (leader) of intelligence1.
Hasan bin Abil Hasan Al-Farsi has cited from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) that the Holy Prophet (S) has said: It is compulsory for every Muslim to obtain education. Allah be-friends those who obtain knowledge2.
Abu Ishaq has cited the following words of Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s.): O people! The completion of religion is to obtain knowledge and to act on it. It is more compulsory to obtain knowledge than to obtain wealth. The quantity of wealth is destined. Allah, the Just, has taken the responsibility of its distribution and He will fulfill His promise. Ilm is preserved by Aalims and you have to obtain it. So obtain ilm as ordered by Allah3.
Abu Hamza Omali has cited a tradition of Imam Sajjad (a.s.): If people realized the importance of religious education, they would give their lives even by drowning in the sea to obtain Ilm. Allah, through His messenger, told Janab al-Daniyal that the worst believer is one who is illiterate insults the Alim and does not follow him. The best believer is one who is pious, eager to earn thawab, companion of alims, follower of Alims and who learns from the scholars4.
In another tradition it is stated that an Alims, from whose Ilm benefit is derived, he is better than 70,000 Abids5.
It is stated by Muaviya bin Ammar: I asked Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.): What is the difference between a Ravi (collector of Ahadith) who preaches your tradition, who is able to convince Mu’mins to follow the tradition and an abid who has no such qualities? He replied: Such a ravi is better than thousand Abids6.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said: In life, Khair (betterment) is only for two types of people.
(1) The Alim who is obeyed and
(2) a person who listens carefully and obtains knowledge (Ilm)7.
Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) told Bashir Dahan: There is no betterment for those of my companions who do not obtain
religious education. Bashir! Remember, a person who does not learn Fiqh is dependant on others’ Ilm and people will lead him astray because of his ignorance8.
Suleman bin Ja’far has cited from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) that Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s.) has said: The status of an Alim is more than that of a person who is fasting, one who prays the whole night and one who fights in the way of Allah. The death of an Alim is an irreplaceable loss to Islam9.
Imam (a.s.) has stated: In the opinion of Iblis (Satan) there is no better death than that of an Alim10.
Hazrat Imam Moosa bin Ja’far (a.s.) has said: When a Mu’min dies, the angels in heaven, each and every place of worship and all the doors of heaven through which his good deeds used to soar, they all cry. It is a loss to Islam. The Alims of Mu’mins are the citadel of Islam just like the walls, which protect the city11.
Besides these, there are innumerable traditions, which are cited in the books of Ahadith (traditions). So my son, beware! Don’t let this big blessing, great status and source of much ‘thawab’ slip from your hands. Beware, in your anxiety for worldly wealth, don’t neglect religious education. On the contrary, to obtain religious education, be ready for poverty. In this way, you will obtain permanent wealth, honor and prestige.
If you have difficulty in earning your daily bread, remember the rewards and thawab in the next world. This will lighten all your troubles. Just look at all those people who left religious education and became busy amassing wealth. How happy and contented they are! They have been deprived of benefits of both the worlds. At least you are assured of benefits in the next world.
Son, be contended. Don’t go after the show and splendor of the world. This world has not appreciated the worth and dignity of the grandson of the Holy Prophet (S) Hazrat Imam Hussein (a.s.), then who are you? This world gave importance to Yazid over Imam Husain (a.s.). Don’t fall in love with this unfaithful and double-crossing world. It is against intelligence. Philosophers like Ibn al-Sina have strongly opposed it.
Son, don’t be disappointed with all the trials and tribulations which you have to suffer in obtaining ilm. Do your work. Remember, this world is a house of misery and troubles. It is useless to search for happiness and ease in this world. If this world gets attracted towards you, then it will push you further from the next world, take you away from piety and get you entangled in useless talk and deception. It will put all its burden on you by distracting you.
One who desires this world will always be in distress. His condition will always be like hell, which is always shouting ‘Hal Min Mazid’. Its stomach is never full. There is always one way to escape from it - fall in love with the next world. Then there will be neither uneasiness, nor misery nor sadness.
Son, I mean by my life, that pleasure and happiness, which you get in rejecting this world, you will not get one thousandth of it, if you go after this world. But yes, remember, by rejecting this world, it does not mean that you should give away all you have, cutoff relations with everybody and become a ‘sufi’. The shariat does not like this at all. ‘Rejecting this world’ means not to fall in love with this world, not to get carried away by its pleasure. It means to have faith in Allah in whatever you get and be happy in Allah’s will.
On this subject, there is a reference in the ‘Sahih’ of Abdulla bin Yasur. A man said to Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.): I loved this world. I hope I get it. Imam said: You love it so much? What will you do if you get it? The man replied: I will use it for my benefit as well as for the benefit of my children, I will do charity in the way of Allah, I will perform Haj and Umra. The Imam replied: This is not the love of this world but this the love of the next world12.
Son, may Allah bless you in this world as well as in the next world. When obtaining ilm, keep your intentions pure. Keep your heart away from worldly selfishness and turn your soul towards obtaining strength of action. Keep away from evils. Develop strength of character. Keep anger and evil desires in control. Always remember the following words of Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.): Who ever obtains ‘Ilm’, acts on it and teaches it to others, will be called ‘Great’ in heavens. It will be announced that this man learned for the sake of Allah, acted on it for the sake of Allah and taught it to others for the sake of Allah13.
Ubad bin Suhaib has narrated from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.): There are 3 types of students: The first type of student learns so that they spread ignorance and in–fighting. The second type learn for pride and conspiracy. The third type learn for ‘Fiqh’ and reasoning.
The first type of people brag about their ilm in gatherings and social functions, pretend about ilm, make a show of sincerity in public though in reality they are devoid of ‘Taqwa’ Allah will rub their noses and break their back. The second type who learns for pride and conspiracy will be polite with rich people, enjoy their hospitality and destroy their religion.
One who learns for pride and conspiracy will be polite with rich people, enjoy their hospitality and destroy their religion. One who learns for ‘Fiqh’ and reasoning will be always sad, worrying about the next world. He will pray in the darkness of night and shiver. He knows the people. He is not misled by those near to him. Allah has strengthened his ‘Arkan14’.
Salim bin Kais has given reference of Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s.) about the following words of the Holy Prophet (S) that two types of thirst cannot be quenched: The thirst of one who seeks this world and thirst of one who seeks ilm. A person who is satisfied with ‘Halal’ will be safe otherwise he is doomed. Whoever obtains ilm from it’s ‘Ehl’ and acts on it will be saved. If he obtain ilm with the intention of getting this world then he will get this world only. He will be deprived of everything in the next15.
Abu Huzayfa has cited the following from Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) that, one who obtains Ahadith with the intention of earning this world, will be deprived of the here after. One who desires blessings in the hereafter, he will get it in this world as well as the next world16.
Hafas bin Gayas has quoted the following saying of Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) that whenever you see an Alim tilting towards this world, than be careful about your religion because every friend worries about his friend.
At another place, it is stated that, Allah (s.w.t.) sent the following message to Janab Dawood: Beware, Don’t make an Alim who is engrossed in this world, a medium between you and me. He will lead you astray from the path of religion. These type of Alims are robbers. My minimum behaviour towards them will be to destroy from their hearts the pleasure of my praise17.
Sakuni has cited the following from Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) that Mursal al-Azam (S) has said that; fakihs are the trustees of the prophets as long as they do not enter this world: He was asked: O prophet of Allah! How will they enter the world? He replied: By obeying the kings. When they do this, then be careful of your religion (Beware of them)18.
Rabai bin Abdulla has cited from Imam Muhammad Baqer (a.s.) that whosoever procures knowledge to oppose Alims, to fight with foolish people and to draw people’s attention towards him, will go to hell on the day of judgement. Leadership is the right of those who deserve leadership19.
Son, do not sin after procuring Ilm. Allah’s hujjat is very essential for an Alim. Allah only forgives those who are ignorant not Alims20.
Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) told Ibne Gayas: Allah will forgive seventy sins of an ignorant person before forgiving one sin of an Alim21.
(This does not mean that everyone should remain ignorant so that his sins are forgiven because not to procure ilm deliberately is also a sin. This is for those people who cannot study due to circumstances and they cannot reach those who are Ahle-Ilm - Jawadi)
Whenever you want to procure Ilm, then search for righteous, good and pious teacher, because there is always a danger from those who are not Muttaqi.
Son, read Munyatul Murid by Sahahid al-Sani (a.r.). In this book there is a detailed description of relationship between a teacher and pupil. No deed is praiseworthy without manners and respect. Respect all Alims especially your teachers. Teacher is in the place of your father22.
Sabit bin Dinar has cited from Hazrat Imam Sajjad (a.s.) that whosoever guides you in Ilm, it is his right that you respect him, you listen to his lecture very attentively, you should not raise your voice over his voice, you should not talk of others in his presence nor backbite. If someone speaks bad about him then you should defend him. You should cover his defects and declare his virtues. You should not mix with his enemies. If you do all these, then angels will also say that you have procured ilm for Allah and not for public.
The right of the pupil over his teacher is that the teacher should look after his pupil. Allah has made the teacher his guardian. He has opened his treasures for him. If, during studies, he behaves well, does not get angry, then Allah will give him more. If he refuses to impart knowledge, rejects his request, then it is incumbent upon Allah to snatch away the glitter of his ilm and obliterate the respect, which the people have for him23.
Suleman bin Ja’fari has cited from Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) this narration from Hazrat ‘Ali (a.s.) that it is the right of an Alim that you should not ask him too many questions, and you should not tug at his clothes. When you enter the assembly of people, besides saluting everybody, do special salam to him, sit in front of him and not behind him.
Don’t make gestures with your eyes or hands. Don’t talk too much. Don’t harass him by sitting for too long. Their example is that of a date tree. One sitting below the tree waits patiently for the fruits and takes whatever he gets24.
Son, may Allah count you amongst ‘Religious Alim’. Act on whatever ilm you have obtained. The popularity of ilm is because of its implementation. An Alim who does not act is like a tree without fruits.
Beware, never stop acting on your ilm because knowledge Becomes useless without actions. Someone has rightly said that it is the responsibility of every Mu’mineen to act but the responsibility is very severe on an alim. It is for this reason that the wives of the prophet (S) earn greater reward for their obedience and get more punishment for their sins. Reward and punishment may vary according to circumstance prevailing conditions.
Salim bin Qais has cited from Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s) the following saying of the Holy Prophet (S) that alims are of two types. Some alims act on their ilm and are saved, some alims do not act on their ilm and are doomed. Those in hell will be disturbed by the foul smell emitting from alims who did not act. The most unlucky alim will be the one who will go to hell because of his inaction while those who followed his guidance and advice will go to heaven! Beware of becoming a slave to your desires and excessive hopes. Slavery to desires, stops you from the right path and excessive desires make you forget the hereafter25.
Ismail bin Jabir has narrated from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) that ilm is enjoined with action. Whosoever obtains ilm should act on it. Ilm demands action. If there is no action, ilm is frittered away26.
Abdullah bin al-Qasam al Ja’fari has narrated from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) that an alim who does not act on his ilm, his guidance and advice will flow down the heart as water follows down from a mountain stone.
‘Ali bin Hashim bin Burid has stated that a man came to Hazrat Imam Sajjad (a.s). he asked him a few questions. Hazrat (a.s.) replied to all the questions. Than he wanted to ask some more questions. Hazrat (a.s.) said: It is stated in the Bible that before obtaining more ilm you should first act on the ilm which you already have. Ilm without action is the cause of kufr and he strays away from Allah27.
In some of the sermons of Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s.), it is said that act on your ilm so that you are guided. An Alim without action is like an ignorant man who never gets out of his ignorance and is always confused. This type of alim and ignorant man both will be doomed. So beware do not have doubts otherwise you will become kafir. Don’t be lazy about right and truth otherwise you will be the loser. ‘Right’ is that you should learn ilm and religious ilm is that you should not go astray. Order your ‘Nafs’ to obey Allah, Don’t fool’ Nafs because it is a sin. One who obeys ‘Allah’ is happy while one who sins is disappointed and unlucky.
Abdullah bin Maymun bin Kaddah has narrated from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) that a man asked Holy Prophet (S): O prophet of Allah, what is ilm? He (S) replied: Silence. Second question: After that? He (S) replied: ‘To remember’. Again he asked: After that? The Holy Prophet (S) replied: Act on it. Last question ! After that? He (S) replied ‘Propagate, Propagate28’.
Haris bin Mugira has narrated from Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) the explanation of the Ayat Innama Yakshallah…… that an Alim is one whose words and deeds complements each other. Otherwise there will be contradiction between words and action.
Son, inculcate the above mentioned qualities of an Alim in yourself. Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) has stated that: Obtain Ilm, decorate yourself with ilm. Behave politely with your students as well as with your teachers. Beware don’t become a tyrant Alim because this makes right (truth) useless and destroys it.
In ‘Sahih al-habli’ Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) has stated a saying of Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s.): I will give you the sign of a real faqih. A real faqih and religious alim is one who does not make people lose hope from the blessings of Allah and also does not make people unmindful about the punishment of Allah; does not give permission to sin and does not depend on any thing else except the Holy Qur’an. There is no goodness in the ilm in which there is no useful lesson and there is no benefit in it’s reading, in which there is nothing to think and ponder. Such prayers are useless in which there is no fear of Allah29.
Muawiyah bin Wahab through Hazrat Imam Sadiq (a.s) has cited the saying of Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s.) that: O seeker of Knowledge! There are three signs of an Alim ‘Ilm’, 'Hilm’ (politeness) and ‘Silence’, there are three sign of so-called Alims they fight with their superiors through sin, they suppress those under them by tyranny and they help tyrants30.
At another place, it is stated that the heart of an alim is devoid of ignorance and treachery.
Abu Baseer has said that he had heard from Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) the saying of Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s): “O seeker of knowledge! There are many blessing of ilm which you should remember. Its head is full of politeness, its eyes are devoid of jealousy, its ears are understanding, its tongue is truthfulness, its memory is anxiousness, its heart is good intentions, its intelligence is understanding of things and deeds, its hands are blessing, its legs are ‘Ziarat’ of alims, its courage is safety, its wisdom is ‘Taqwa’, its center is ‘Najat’, its benefit is ‘Aafiyat’, its mount is faithfulness, its weapon is to speak slowly, its word is ‘Reza’, its army is debate and discussion, its wealth is good manners, its collection is to desist from sin, its food is good deeds, its place of rest is mutual relations, its argument is righteousness, its companion is love of righteous people31.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said that the best vazir of Imam is ‘Ilm’ and the best vazir of Ilm is Hilm (politeness) and the best vazir of Hilm is kindness and the best vazir of kindness is patience32.
Son! Beware, if you do not have knowledge, then don’t say anything. Hazrat Imam as-Sadiq (a.s) told Mufazzal: Beware of two traits in which there is destruction of man: Religious rituals through Batil (falsehood) and to give ‘Fatwa’ without ilm.
It is stated by Hazrat Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (a.s) that: Whosoever gives ‘Fatwa’ without ilm and guidance, the angels of mercy and punishment both will curse him and he will be responsible for deeds of all those who follow his ‘fatwa33’.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said that one who gives ‘Fatwa’ without understanding and knowing ‘Nasikh’, 'Mansukh,’ ‘Mohkam’ and ‘Motashabeh,’ will be ruined and he will ruin others34.
Son, remember, if you do not know anything, then say openly and frankly that you do not know, don’t say ‘Allaho Aalam.’ Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) has said that by saying ‘Allaho Aalam’, doubt is created in the mind of the listener that possibly you know while by saying ‘I do not know,’ it becomes clear – you are speaking honestly35.
At another place it is stated that if an alim does not know a problem he can say ‘Allaho Aalam’ but an ignorant man has no right to say it (because he is not qualified to do research, so he should clearly state his ignorance36.)
At one place, it is stated that: Keep silent and behave with restrain about an order of which you are ignorant. Ask about it to ‘Saheban al-Ismat’ (Masooms). They will lead you to the right path, clear the darkness and clarify the truth. Allah has ordered that ‘whatever you do not know, ask ‘Ahl al-Zikr’, and Alims37’.
Beware don’t act without ilm. By acting without ilm, man is lead astray. The more he moves forward, the more he is misled away from right (truth)38.
The Holy Prophet (S) has stated that one who acts without Ilm spoils the work instead of doing it properly. Son, keep company of those alims who practice what they preach, love them. Those who love are counted along with their beloved by Allah. A person who likes the deed of a community is considered a partner in their deeds39.
Imam Sadiq (a.s.) told Abu Hanifa: Become an alim or a seeker of ilm or a friend of ilm.
By becoming an enemy of an alim you will be ruined40.
There is a famous tradition from Imam Sajjad (a.s.) that a person who desires the company of Alims and who is pious, is dear to Allah.
Give 'Ilm’ to one who deserves it. Teaching is ‘Zakat’ of Ilm.
Janabe Isa (a.s) said in a sermon to the people of Bain Israel: Beware don’t speak words of wisdom in front of illiterate people because it is a tyranny on ‘Hikmat’. If you hide ‘Hikmat’ from those who deserve it, then it is a tyranny on them.
Son may Allah keep you alive and give you ‘Tawfiq’ to be contended with whatever He gives. Beware learn all the ilms as much as necessary, spend the rest of the time in learning ‘Fiqh’. The love of ilm is the secret of ‘Amal’ (deed) and ‘Amal’ is related to ‘Fiqh’. It is by ‘Fiqh’ that you understand ‘Amr’ and ‘Nahi’. Allah’s Ehkam is the best information in this word. It is through ‘Ehkam’ that you can prosper in this world and the hereafter and through it there is the perfection of humanity.
In Ma-abinul Usul’, the author has said very beautifully: Allah has created all things with some purpose. He has made human being “Ashraful Makhluqat” (best of his creation), so the purpose behind this must also he Ashraf (best).
It is clear that the purpose behind it is definitely not to harm human beings. Only an illiterate and ignorant can do such a thing. Since Allah is Alim and Gani, the purpose behind the creation is to benefit him, The worldly benefit is not the benefit in the real sense. So we conclude that the real purpose is the benefit of the next worlds. Everyone will not get this benefit. For this, you ought to have ‘authority’, and you cannot get “authority” without Amal (Deed)’ and ‘Amal’ is derived from ‘Ilm’, so it is essential to have Ilm for the benefits of the hereafter.
There is no greater ilm than the ilm, which gives you these benefits. Therefore Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) has said to Aban bin Taghlab that: I wish I could whip my companions so that they obtain religious education41.’
‘Ali bin Hamza has cited this tradition from Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.): Learn religious education. One who does not learn religious ilm is ignorant and uncouth. Allah has made learning religious education compulsory and made its propagation absolutely necessary42.
Mufazzal bin Umair has cited the following tradition of Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) that: Whosoever does not obtain religious education will not be blessed on the day of judgment. His Deeds will not considered pure and sacred43.
Ibrahim bin Abdul Hamid has cited the following from Hazrat Imam Musa al-Kazim (a.s.) that Mursal al-Aazam (s.a.w) entered a mosque and he saw a person surrounded by many people. He asked ‘what is this? The people said’ “He is Allama.’ The Holy Prophet (S) asked ‘what do you mean by Allama?’ The people replied “ he has good knowledge of Arabian dynasties, history of Arab wars, arabic poetry etc.”
The Holy Prophet (S) replied: “Beware, this is such a type of ilm which is neither beneficial nor harmful. There are different types of alims: Mohkam Ayat, Aadil Fazira and Mustakim sirat. Anything else is superficial. (it means that Allama is one who is expert in these three ilms, which are called ilms by shariat. In addition to these, a good poet, a good writer a good thinker, and a good philosopher cannot be called “Allama” – Jawadi)
Hazrat Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (a.s) has said: The finished achievement of a man is to obtain ‘Religious Ilm’, to be patient during calamity and to search for financial means44.
It is stated by hammad through Hazrat Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s) that when Allah wishes to bless any body He gives him religious education45.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said that Aalims are the trustees, followers are the forts and oasis are the leaders.
Son, remember the discussion about ilm is prayer. Don’t neglect it. The Holy Prophet (S) has said: Discuss religious topics, meet each other and talk about it. The hearts shines by listening to tradition. Heart also gets rusted like a sword. Tradition remove the rust and sharpen it46.
Hazrat Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s) said: Allah blesses one who keeps alive Ilm. ‘It means that discuss religious topics with ahle al-deen and Ahle Taqwa (those who are pious).
May Allah guide you to words religious Ilm and good deeds. If circumstances demand that you do business, if you don’t do it you are liable to incur loss for yourself and there is a possibility of your committing sins (then definitely do business) but in doing business don’t neglect your religious studies. Spend some time for business and some time to obtain Ilm. The essence of tradition and experience is that by running around more, income does not increase nor it decreases by spending some less time47.
Beware don’t spend your whole life in business, there by neglecting the procurement of ilm. Doing like this is like following the habits of animals. As a matter of fact, it is very unfortunate that man does not understand his responsibilities. His recitation and Duas are just fluttering of lips which have no meaning.
It is appropriate and necessary that ‘Majlis al-Husain’ (a.s) should be made the basis of life. There is ‘this world’ and hereafter both in it. It has worldly benefit and you also obtain religious ilm.
(Alas, in this age, lectures are devoid of ilm. Now it is not necessary to have religious ilm for Zikr and lectures).
Be careful that the tongue remains pure of lies and allegation. Without proper research, don’t say anything in the name of Aeima al-Masoomeen (a.m.s.). In reciting ‘Masaeeb’ depend on trustworthy tradition. Don’t ever think that by reciting more ‘Masaeeb’ there will be more weeping. Wailing and crying happens due to its effect on the heart and not by creating traditions. The best way to arouse the feelings is by first reciting the high status and wonderful deeds of Ahle Bayt (a.s) so that their greatness and personalities are made known, then their calamities and sufferings should be described. This will have an immediate effect on heart.
Beware even after attaining a high position in Ilm. Don’t desire leadership or power, It is like putting yourself in trouble and destroying your ‘Deen’. I am telling you this from experience. After becoming a leader, if you keep speaking the bitter truth, then you will not have peace of mind and people will start abusing you. If you act as per the wishes of the people, then, you will suffer in the next world.
Run away from leadership as if you are running away from a lion because there is no benefit in a thing, which keeps you away from Ibadat. In my whole life, I have not come across such a leader who acts honestly and has not become a victim of public criticism. People think it fair to attack his wealth and honour. They even consider it legitimate to abuse him. Not only that, they treat him as ‘Kafir al-Harbi’.
Beware, don’t create tools for leadership nor hatch plots for it. By doing these things, you will bring harm on yourself and you will be deprived of happiness in this world and your religion also will be effected. Yes, if leadership comes automatically, then accept it but be careful about ‘Nafs’ every Mu’mint of your life because there is danger of ‘Nafs’ (desires) and the possibility of falling prey to your desires. Advantages are less and disadvantages are more. Those who can save themselves are few and those who fall from grace are many. There are few ‘danger spots’ for ‘leadings Alims’ which need to be pointed.
This is a deadly poison so beware of it. Many a times, you err and are ruined, specially in such a time when honest men are few and satan’s followers are many. Cunning people will do such deeds which will take ¾ of them to hell and only ¼ will go to heaven.
Will any sensible man be ready to do such a deed in which the possibility of loss is more than that of profit? Can any pious man dare to sit on a seat where prophet and wasi used to sit or some wretch evil man used to sit48?
Can there be someone who has so much self-confidence in himself that he considers himself equal to ‘prophet’ and a wasi so that he can save himself from above mentioned misfortunes?
Beware, don’t go astray by satan’s treachery and don’t fall into the trap of judgeship by considering it as ‘Wajibe al-Aini’, otherwise you will be ruined by your ignorance. Of course, if you go to such a place where there is no one else and if, thinking cooling and calmly, you feel judgeship as Wajib al-Aini, then as far as possible, try to make peace and reconciliation with both the parties and even after knowing the truth, deal with restrain.
Sometimes, rights of beggars, destitute, prophets’ house hold, people etc. are usurped and sometimes, without any solid base of Shariat rights are usurped by giving importance to self over others or relatives. Sometimes, because of the desire to spend money according to one’s wishes, rights of other are usurped due to lack of sincerity.
If you become ‘Marja’ regarding ‘ Shariat’s Rights’ then remember the following advice of my father (Taba Sarah):
(1) As far as possible, don’t spend ‘Huquq al-Shariya’ money on yourself. Be contented with whatever gifts and presents you get, because, I am afraid, that, if, in the beginning, you form the habit of spending from ‘Huquq al-Shariya’ for your needs, then, with the passage of time, the limit of needs will also increase. Money will be spent on luxuries and eventually, the purchase of property and estate will also be considered a necessity’, which is a sure way of destruction and ultimately you will become the rightful candidate for permanent Allah’s punishment.’ Rights’ are like doubts. One who moves around it, is bound to get trapped one day.
Yes, if you are not a ‘Marja’ for ‘Taqleed’ and Huquq’, then you can take your right as per your needs. And yes, never for a Moment think that if I do not spend from ‘Huquq al-shariya’, I will die of hunger because one who is responsible for providing livelihood is very reliable, If he sees you running away from the use of ‘Huquq’, then he will send gifts and presents which our conscience also accepts.
There is an extraordinary effect of not using ‘Huquq al-shariya’. There is ‘Noor’ in the heart, increase in life span, ‘Taufiq’ of Allah’s obedience and freedom from mistakes - sins. May Allah give you such experience whereby your faith in Him becomes strong and implicit.
(2) While distributing ‘Huquq’, remember the ‘Qurbat’ (nearness) of Allah. It should not happen that because of your personal selfishness. You distribute ‘Huquq’ amongst your servants and followers and those who are far away are deprived of it or you give more to those who are near to you and less to those who are far because one who is near is showing love and affection to you while who is far away is not able to show it.
Beware, always keep in mind the reasons and rules of ‘Shariat’ and accordingly, give prominence to one over the other, because to deliver the ‘Huquq is ‘Ibadat’ and in ‘Ibadat’ the ‘Niyyat’ of Qurbat’ is necessary. If the ‘Niyyat’ is not proper and right, then there will be responsibility from both the sides-giver of the ‘Huquq’. You will be loser in this world as well as in the next world because you will not get ‘Thawab’ as your Niyyat’ was not good.
Instead of doing haste in issuing fatwa, use discretion because it is the worst illness. Don’t issue fatwa without taking all the aspects of ‘Fiqh’ into consideration. It is quite possible that you will issue fatwa by looking at one part while some valid argument may be there is another part and you may become liable for ‘Azaab’.
I have seen several times that some Alims give fatwa by taking into consideration one part of the related tradition and the fatwa was proved against ‘Ijma’ because they did not take the trouble of looking at the other part.
If you will read the tradition of Abu Dalad about renting a mule, you will realise how difficult it is to give ‘Fatwa’. If a ‘Fatwa’ about a few ‘Dirham’ can stop rain falling from the sky, then what would result if one issues wrong fatwa about huge wealth, someone’s reputation and precious life.
It is written about Allama Hilli that after his death, he told his son that if the book ‘Al-Fayn’ and Ziarat al-Husain (a.s) were not there, ‘Fatwas’ would have ruined him. If this is the condition of Allama Hilli, what would happened to others!
Beware, don’t issue ‘Fatwa’ before obtaining all facts and information. Even after obtaining all information, avoid it as far as possible. However, if there is likelihood of people going astray and illiterate people holding sway, then do issue ‘Fatwa’ but be very careful.
Along with ‘Marjiyyat’ is born the love for pomp and splendor and this destroys the ‘Thawab’ (reward) and ruined the man. Beware of this danger . Take care of your ‘Nafs’. ‘Nafs’ always leads towards evil. As long as Allah does not shower His blessing, till then, may Allah give you and me ‘Taufiq’ to stay away from selfishness and desires. He is the only one Who bestows compassion and mercy on his servants.
Beware, your heart should not go against the soul by showing piety and contentment in public which is not there in actual reality. In the present age, this type of behaviour is seen everywhere (public life is different from private life).
Beware, this is ‘Shirk al-Khafi’ (hidden shrink) and if you ponder deeply, it is ‘Shirk al-jali’ (open shrink) also, as if a servant wants to glorify someone else expect Allah and he is engrossed in his thoughts, though his private life is not going to be hidden for long. Someday it will be disclosed and then he will fall from grace and his reputation will be ruined.
Son, May Allah improves all your deeds, increase your life span and give you more ‘Taufiq’. As far as possible, reside at Najaf al-Ashraf because you are in neighbourhood of Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s) and Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s) takes special care of his nieghbours. He saves his nieghbours from evil deeds. This has been experienced in this age (Hijri 1324). It is related about Najaf and Kufa that any cruel oppressor who tries to destroy it, he himself will be destroyed.
(May Allah punish the present day tyrants for their cruel deeds and protect Najaf al-Ashraf. Insha Allah, the blood of Martyrs will not go in vain.)
In Najaf, there is the Ziarat of Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s). No sensible person can be unaware of the ‘Fazila’ of Ziarat and praying Salat (prayer) near the tomb1.
Residing at Najaf will save you from many sins. Here there are no allurements which, you find at other places like Iran, etc.
(Here, author has given the example of Iran. However now Iran has become Markaz al-Khair (center of virtues) while rulers of Najaf al-Ashraf have established centers to ruin the moral character. May Allah punish these tyrants for their sins and destroying the sanctity of the ‘Shrine’ - Jawadi).
If, for some reason, it is not possible to reside at Najaf al-Ashraf, then stay at some other sacred place expect Karbala’ because it is ‘Makruh’ to stay at Karbala’. Residing at Karbala’ makes a man cruel. His attention towards the tragedy of Karbala’ decrease which is a very big loss.
Son, if you can spend your life at some sacred place then don’t reside at any other place. If you are helpless, then search for such a place where virtuous people and Alims are residing. When staying at a sacred place, find some house near the shrine (Haram), so that you can always have the good fortune of Ziarat. If you are residing some where else, then reside in the central part of the city because central part is more protected from calamities.
Remember, if you can get a house on ownership or ‘Wakf’, don’t search for a rented house because your own house or wakf house is better than a rented grand mansion.
Before purchasing a house, inquire about the neighbours. Whenever I have not paid attention to this aspect, I have had bitter experience.
If you want to construct a house, don’t construct the whole house at a stretch but do it in stages. Also don’t demolish the whole house without valid reasons but do the necessary repair work so that there is no waste of money. Even if you have lots of wealth, don’t waste it on unnecessary show and splendour.
This world is not a place of permanent residence. Spend the rest of your money on improving your status in the next world by giving financial assistance to someone to repair his house, helping bachelors to get married and helping the needy etc.
If possible, stay in a spacious house, the speciousness of the house is the cause of good luck and ‘Barkat’ whether in this would or the hereafter2.
Son, adopt the middle courses in wearing clothes. Wear such clothes which can be worn both by the rich and the poor. If you are poor then you will be spending within your means and it will not be considered extravagance (Israf). If you are rich, then it will be considered as ‘zohad’ and ‘Taqwa’, and it will give some consolation to the poor. Remember, this world is a house of upheaval. It can turn upside down anytime. So adopt such behaviour that changes do not create embarrassment for you.
Don’t wear such clothes which exhibit your poverty or affluence. Both these extremes have been criticized in the tradition. Be careful about cleanliness and purity in clothes. This is appreciated by ‘Shari at’.
Keep good friends. A man is know by his friends. Beware, don’t keep the company of men of bad faith, sinners and bad character. Because man is influenced by his company. Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s) has pointed at it in his ‘Diwan al-mash-hoor’. Lookman Hakim had also advised his son to think before sitting in any company. Wherever you see discussion about Allah, sit there. If you are an alim, then people will benefit from you and if you are ignorant, then you will get the benefit of ‘ilm’. If Allah sends His blessings on them, you will also be included in His blessings3.
Hazrat Imam Musa al-Kazim (a.s) has said that it is better to talk with an ‘Alim’ near a garbage heap than talking with an illiterate man sitting on a soft carpet.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said that Hawaris (companions) asked Hazrat Isa (a.s): In whose company should we sit? Hazrat Isa (a.s) replied: The company of those, whose presence remind you of Allah, whose talk increase your knowledge and whose action remind you of the hereafter4.
The Holy Prophet (S) has said:
Sitting in the company of a trustworthy person is better than one years deeds5.
Amirul Mu’mineen (a.s) has said: Beware, don’t keep the company of mean people. There is no hope of goodness from them.
Shaikh Sadooq (a.s) has said that: ‘Mean’ person means:
(1) One who is not aware what he is saying nor is he aware of what is being said about him. That man is ‘mean’.
(2) One who blows his own trumpet is called ‘mean’.
(3) One who does not get happiness by good behaviour nor he feels sorry by bad behaviour is called ‘mean’.
(4) A ‘mean’ person is one who claims leadership even through he has no qualifications.
Of course, if there is hope of their improvement by keeping company of such people and if their actions and thoughts are not going to influence you, then surely there is no harm in keeping their company. This is because it is not sufficient to control your ‘Nafs’ and save yourself from hell but it is also necessary to guide others to the right path. Therefore ‘Amr-bil-maaruf and ‘Nahi-aml-munkar’ had been made compulsory much emphasis has been laid on these, so that other could be guided towards the obedience of Allah and saved from the fire of hell.
Son, when you desire marriage, find a girl from a noble family because it is through her that your family will increase. She is like a model for your family. A child is always influenced by model and milk. Look out for good qualities- ‘Iman - Taqwa’ and also at her face and external appearance so that you are not attached towards some other woman and mutual love and affection is maintained.
The reason behind warning against marrying only for beauty, is that it should not be made the only criteria instead of religion and good character. This does not mean that you should not consider beauty at all. The same thing applies to wealth and riches, lest you place wealth in place of religion and character. If there is some rich lady who is religious-minded also, then there is no harm in marrying her.
On the contrary, there is the additional advantage that her wealth will be useful for your children. They can study religious ilm in peace and do all their work without any financial worries, But that is only possible, if both ‘religion’ and ‘noble family’ are their. Beware, don’t marry a woman who has recently acquired wealth. She will be proud of her wealth and she will consider you inferior to her. In the tradition, it is ‘Makruh’ to take loan from newly rich people. They have more ego and superiority complex. If however, you have to choose between a newly rich woman, then marry the poor woman.
Son, keep your wife, daughter and other household women in the confine of your house. Don’t allow them to go out unless it is necessary. They have very little understanding of good and evil. Therefore, they ruin both this world and hereafter by coming under the spell of some other woman.
Pay attention to the education and upbringing of your children. Teach them ‘Shariat’ and good manners. Don’t think that ‘still they are kids and they do not need any knowledge about Allah’s order’s. One, who has not been brought up properly from childhood, will be difficult to mould after he has grown up.
Teach ‘Deen’s Ehkam’ and ‘Shariat’ to your children because impressions made during childhood cannot be erased. After teaching them Qur’an al-Majid, let them read and learn from the books of
‘Mojizats’ (miracles), so that they not only get their ‘Aqida’ (beliefs) from their parents but they strengthen their beliefs with reason and logic.
Take maximum care that children do not go out of the house alone and they don’t play with other children. If they want to play, let them play in the house because they can be easily influenced by other children. It should not happen that they came under the influence of other. Even while studying, see to it, that your children do not stay in the company of others more than necessary.
Arrange religious discussions at such a place where some third person is present so that he may not learn mischief or ‘Shaytaniyat’ from his companion. I am writing all these from my personal experience. During my childhood, I had a companion, who was very well mannered and coming from a good family. Yet, because of him, I cultivated the habit of cigarette smoking, as a result of which, I am suffering till today, Whenever I decided to quit smoking, I suffered one illness or the other and till today I have not been able to quit smoking. In other words, I am suffering from the influence of companionship.
Beware, don’t spoil your children by giving them money. There are many disadvantages in it. Their hearts start loving wealth and afterwards craving for money cannot be erased from their hearts. In future, they will try to obtain money by any means. This is a bad example of character deficiency.
Son, whether you have a son or a daughter, don’t inculcate the habit of wearing costly dresses and eating high quality food, because, if circumstances are not helpful in future, they will be greatly inconvenienced. If you make them follow ‘middle-path’ then they will be happy in whatever they get. Also keep in mind to get them married as soon as they become ‘Baligh’. In this way, their ‘religion’ and ‘respect’ can be safe guarded and character deficiency will not arise. By doing this, don’t think of poverty or scarcity because Allah has already promised ‘Rizq’.
If you do not act on my orders, then I will consider you ‘Aaq’. My soul will be displeased with you.
If you are extremely poor then do ‘Muta’ so that you do not fall prey to sexual abuses.
Son, the essence of all these advices is that always think about religious and worldly problems. Do whatever is better according to Shariat. Always keep an eye on results so that Allah gives you ‘Taufiq’ to do good deeds and make your future better than your past.
7th Jamadi-ul-awwal 1324 Hijri - Abdullah Al-Mamkani