Pathology of Solitary (Unsociability)

Friday Sermon, 21 Nov. 2008

As much as we need socialization some people have problems socializing with others. They can’t make friends or they can’t keep a friendship. As a result they develop a very negative attitude towards society. They accuse every one as being disloyal, treacherous and selfish, thus they suffer from anti-social behavior called ‘solitariness’. The following are some causes of solitariness.

Some Causes of Solitariness

1. Being argumentative

2. Saying offensive jokes

الامام الصادق (ع): إن اردت ان یصفو لک ود` اخیک فلاتمازحن`ه و لاتمارین`ه و لاتباهین`ه و لاتشار`ن`ه. - بحار الانوار 78:291

Imam al- Sadiq (a.s): “If you wish to keep the friendship of your friend pure, then do not make jokes about him, do not argue with him, do not boast to him and do not do any evil to him so that he doesn’t do any evil in return to you. 1

3. Keep a bit of formality

الامام الکاظم (ع): لاتذهب الحشمة بینک و بین اخیک و أبق منها فان` ذهابها ذهاب الحیاء.- تحف العقول: 409

Imam al- Kadhem (a.s): “Don’t let the formality be removed between you and your friend, rather keep a bit of it, for the removal of complete formality results in removal of shame.” 2

4. Hypersensitive (be insensitive as beasts or as patient as prophets)

الامام علی (ع): إن صبرتَ صبر الاکارم و الا` سلوتَ سُلُو` البهائم.- نهج البلاغة- قصار 414

Imam ‘Ali (a.s): “If you can endure the patience of the noble people, or else pretend the heedlessness of the beasts.” 3

5. Picking up any mistakes:

(78:229 الامام الصادق (ع): الاستقصاء فرقة.- بحار الانوار

Imam al- Sadiq (a.s): “Counting (the mistakes of a friend) causes separation.” 4

6. The golden advice of Imam al- Sajjad (a.s) to gain a healthy social relationship:

الطبرسی بالإسناد عن ابی محمد العسکری (ع) عن آبائه أن` محمد بن علی الباقر (ع) قال: دخل محمد بن مسلم بن شهاب الزُهری علی علی بن الحسین علیهما السلام و هو کئیب حزین. فقال له زین العابدین (ع): ما بالک مغموما؟ قال: یا بن رسول الله! غموم و هموم تتوالی علی` لما امتُحنتُ به من جهة حس`اد نعمتی و الطامعین فی`، و ممن ارجو و مم`ن احسنتُ الیه فیُخلف ظن`ی. فقال له علی بن الحسین (ع): إحفظ علیک لسانک تملک به إخوانک. قال الزهری: یا بن رسول الله! انی اُحسن الیهم بما یبدر من کلامی. قال علی بن الحسین (ع):

هیهات هیهات! ای`اک أن تُعجب من نفسک بذلک و ای`اک ان تتکلم بما یسبق الی القلوب إنکاره و ان کان عندک اعتذاره، فلیس کل من تسمعه نکرا (شر`ا: نسخة) یمکنک أن توسعه عذرا. ثم قال: یا زهری! من لم یکن عقله من أکمل ما فیه، کان هلاکه من ایسر ما فیه. ثم قال: یا زهری! أما علیک أن تجعل المسلمین منک بمنزلة اهل بیتک فتجعل کبیرهم منک بمنزلة والدک ، و تجعل صغیرهم منک بمنزلة ولدک، و تجعل تِربک منهم بمنزلة اخیک. فای` هؤلاء تحب أن تظلم،

و ای` هؤلاء تحب ان تدعو علیه، و ای` هؤلاء تحب ان تهتک ستره؟ و إن عرض لک ابلیس لعنه الله بأن` لک فضلا علی احد من اهل القبلة، فانظر إن کان اکبر منک فقل: قد سبقنی بالایمان و العمل الصالح فهو خیر منی، و ان کنت اکبر منه فقل: قد سبقته بالمعاصی و الذنوب فهو خیر منی، و ان کان تربک فقل: انا علی یقین من ذنبی و فی شک من امره فما لی ادَع یقینی لشکی.

و إن رأیت المسلمین یعظمونک و یوقرونک و یبجلونک فقل: هذا فضل اَخذوا به، و إن رأیت منهم جفاءً و انقباضا عنک فقل: هذا لذنب احدثتُه، فانک اذا فعلت ذلک سه`ل الله علیک عیشک، و کث`ر اصدقائَک، و قل` اعداءَک و فرحتَ بما یکون من برِ`هم و لم تأسف علی ما یکون من جفائهم.

و اعلم ان` اکرم الناس علی الناس من کان خیره علیهم فایضا، وکان عنهم مستغنیا متعف`فا، و أکرم الناس بعده علیهم من کان عنهم متعف`فا و إن کان الیهم محتاجا فانما اهل الدنیا یعشقون الاموال، فمن لم یزاحمهم فیما یعشقونه کرم علیهم، و من لم یزاحمهم فیها و مک`نهم من بعضها کان اعز` علیهم و اکرم.- الاحتجاج 2: 158-159

Imam al- Baqir (a.s) said: Muhammad Ibn Muslim Ibn Sehab al-Zohr came to Imam Zainul-Abedin (my father) while he was sad and grieved. Imam Zainul-Abedin asked him: Why are you grieved? He said: O son of the Prophet (S)! Distress and grievances always fall upon me as I have been afflicted by them from those who are jealous and greedy of blessings that I enjoy, and from those that I have hope on them and have been kind to them but they disappoint me.

Imam Zainul-Abedin (a.s) said to him: guard your tongue; you will owe by it to your friends. Zohri said: O son of the Prophet (S): I am kind to them with my tongue. The Imam al- said: How impossible, how impossible! Don’t ever be proud of yourself, and don’t you ever say something that people’s hearts reject it even if you have justifications for it.

O Zohri! Whoever his intellect is not the best in him, his perishing will be the easiest in him. You must consider the Muslims your family, then whoever is older than you consider him as a father (or mother), and whoever is younger than you think of him as a son (or daughter), and whoever is of your age position him (her) as a brother (or sister).

Then which of them would you like to be unfair to? And which one of them would you like to curse? And which one of them would you like to defame? If the Satan-May the curse of Allah be on him- allure you that you are better than other Muslims, then whoever is older than you, say (to yourself): He has exceeded me in faith and righteous deeds, thus he is better than me.

And if you are older than him, then say (to yourself): I exceeded him in sins thus he is better than me. And if he is of your age, then say (to yourself): I am sure about my sins but doubt his, then why should I leave my certainty to my doubt.

Moreover, if you see that Muslims admire and honour you then say (to yourself): This is a virtue that they enjoy. And if you experience any aversion and resentment from them, then say (to yourself): This is due to the sins that I have committed.

If you follow what I have told you, then the Almighty Allah will ease your life, multiply your friends, reduce your foes and you will be pleased when they are kind to you, but will not feel sorry from their resentment.

Be aware that the most honourable person to people is the one whose benefits shower on them, yet he is modest and needless of them. And the most honourable person after him is the one who is modest although he may need them. For people of this world love their wealth, thus they love whoever is not competing them in what they love, and whoever does not compete them and let them enjoy part of their wealth they will honour and respect him.” 5

  • 1. Bihar al-Anwar, 78:291
  • 2. Tuhaf al-Uqool , 409
  • 3. Nahj ul Balaghah, sermon 414
  • 4. Bihar al Anwar
  • 5. al-Tabarsi; al-Ihtijaj vol.2 p.158