Lesson Seventy Seven: With Whom We Shall Consult?
Imam ‘Ali (a.s.) said:
لاتُدْخِلَنَّ فِى مَشْوَرَتِكَ بَخِيلاً يَعْدِلُ عَنِ الْفَضْلِ وَ يَعِدُكَ الْفَقْرَ وَ لاجَبَاناً يُضْعِفُكَ عن الأُمُورِ وَ لا حَرِيصاً يُزَّيِّنُ لَكَ الشّرَة بِالْجَوْرِ
Do not consult with misers because they prevent you from service to people and frighten you from poverty, and do not consult with timid people, because they weaken your will to perform important tasks, and do not consult with greedy persons, because they beautify injustice to you.1
Consultation is one of the important Islamic instructions, but while consultation with the right persons helps in improvements and corrective actions, consulting those with certain weaknesses is harmful. Imam Ali recommends that we strictly avoid consulting, specially in important social affairs, with those who are miser or timid or greedy. One of them prevents man from munificence of divine graces, and the other weakens his resolve, and the third encourages man to violate rights of others out of greed.
- 1. Nahjul Balaghah, letter 53