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Monday 27th of June 2022
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Ahl al-Bayt Means of Perfection

Plant seeds do not grow or bear fruit without being directly connected to the soil. Evidently, the soil must be good, for if the soil is contaminated, seeds will not grow and will perish. Therefore, seeds will not grow nor bear fruit save by means of a good soil:

And as for the good land, its vegetation springs for the (abundantly) by the permission of its Lord, and (as for) that which is inferior (its herbage) comes forth but scantily (7:58)

Mediation or means is necessary not only in relation to seeds but also for the realization of every truth so much so that nothing can be realized and nothing reaches perfection without mediation or means. Houses cannot be built without architects and bodies cannot grow without food. Eyes cannot see without light and ears cannot hear without waves nor can man attain worthy position without mediation.

Man’s dignity is to become Allah’s vicegerent but can he attain such sublime spiritual position without any mediation? Never!

However, mediation with which man can find his way to the realm of faith, morality, good deeds, and finally piety is a truth expressed by the Holy Qur’¡n.

Ahl al-Bayt’s Mediation

The Holy Qur’¡n considers only the Infallible Persons as having the position of mediation between Allah and man for leading to faith, good deeds morality and meeting with Allah. These infallible persons are none but the Holy Prophet and Ahl al-Bayt who can familiarize man with the past and future as well as the teachings and wisdom of the Holy Qur’¡n. There is not a bit of corruption, defect or fault, whether overt or covert, in Ahl al-Bayt. In this connection, the Holy Prophet says:

إنَّا أهْلُ الْبَيْتِ قَدْ أذْهَبَ اللهُ عَنَّا الْفَوَاحِشَ مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا وَمَا بَطَنَ.

We, Ahl al-Bayt, are those from whom Allah has removed any hidden or manifest uncleanness.[1]

Following the revelation of the Verse of Purification, Allah’s Messenger said:

نَحْنُ أهْلُ بَيْتٍ طَهَّرَهُمُ اللهُ.

We, Ahl al-Bayt, are purified by Allah.[2]

In an important fragment, Imam `Al¢ (a.s) says:

إنَّمَا أمَرَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ بِطَاعَةِ الرَّسُولِ لأنَّهُ مَعْصُومٌ مُطَهَّرٌ لأ يَأمُرُ بِمَعْصِيَتِهِ. وَإنَّمَا أمَرَ بِطَاعَةِ أولِي الأمْرِ لأنَّهُمْ مَعْصُومُونَ مُطَهَّرُونَ لأ يَأمُرُونَ بِمَعْصِيَتِهِ.

Allah has decreed (His creatures) to obey the Messenger, for he is infallible and purified and he does not order to sin. He has decreed to obey those in authority, for they are infallible and purified and they do not order to sin.[3]

Imam °as¡n (a.s) has said:

إنَّا أهْلُ بَيْتٍ أكْرَمَنَا اللهُ بِالإسْلأمِ، وَاخْتَارَنَا وَاصْطَفَانَا وَاجْتَبَانَا فَأذْهَبَ عَنَّا الرِّجْسَ وَطَهَّرَنَا تَطْهِيراً. وَالرِّجْسُ هُوَ الشَّكُّ، فَلأ نَشُكُّ فِي اللهِ الْحَقِّ وَدِينِهِ أبَداً. وَطَهَّرَنَا مِنْ كُلِّ أفَنٍ وَغَيَّةٍ.

We, Ahl al-Bayt, are those whom Allah has honored by Islam, chosen from among all creatures, removed any uncleanness, and purified a thorough purification. Uncleanness is the same as doubt. We never have any doubt about Allah and His religion. He has also purified us from infirmity or error.[4]

Imam al-B¡qir (a.s) too has said:

إنَّا لأ نُوصَفُ. وَكَيْفَ يُوصَفُ قَوْمٌ رَفَعَ اللهُ عَنْهُمُ الرِّجْسَ؟

We cannot be described. How can a group from whom Allah has removed uncleanness be described?[5]

Imam al-¯¡diq (a.s) has said:

إنَّ الشَّكَّ وَالْمَعْصِيَةَ فِي النَّارِ، لَيْسَا مِنَّا وَلأ إلَيْنَا.

Doubt and sin are in Fire. They are neither from us no do they come to us.[6]

In al-Ziy¡rah al-J¡mi`ah al-Kab¢rah, Imam al-H¡d¢ (a.s) says:

وَأشْهَدُ أنَّكُمُ الأئِمَّةُ الرَّاشِدُونَ الْمَهْدِيُّونَ الْمَعْصُومُونَ الْمُكَرَّمُونَ… عَصَمَكُمُ اللهُ مِنَ الزَّلَلِ، وَآمَنَكُمْ مِنَ الْفِتَنِ، وَطَهَّرَكُمْ مِنَ الدَّنَسِ، وَأذْهَبَ عَنْكُمُ الرِّجْسَ وَطَهَّرَكُمْ تَطْهيراً.

I bear witness that all of you are guide leaders, rightly guided, infallible, highly revered… Allah preserved you guiltless and free from error, kept you safe from unruly disorderliness, freed you from dirt, removed uncleanness from you and cleansed you with a thorough cleansing.[7]

Verily, Allah Who is free from any defect has placed Prophethood and Imamate in an ‘household’ free from any uncleanness so that men will realize the dignity they deserve through their mediation, be immune from infidelity, carnal desires and sins, have a happy life in this world and finally meet Allah and abide in Paradise forever:

This is a Book which We have revealed to you that you may bring forth men from utter darkness into light. (14:1)

O you who believe, obey Allah and obey the Apostle and those in authority from among you. (4:59)

So far, we have reported important narrations from the books of Sh¢`ite and Sunni scholars.

Based on the Holy Prophet’s saying, ‘those in authority’ the obedience to whom is like obedience to Allah and to His Messenger stands for the Twelve Infallible Imams from the Holy Prophet’s Household. In that saying, the names of the twelve Imams have been mentioned.


Ahl al-Bayt
A Link To Allah

Man is instinctively inclined towards perfection and Allah is the peak of perfection. Therefore, man has a natural inclination towards Allah and in this relation he is trying hard to reach the peak of perfection. If man is truly devoted to Allah, this inclination motivates him to walk on the path of Him:

O man! Surely you must strive (to attain) to your Lord, a hard striving until you meet Him. (84:6)

Since reaching the peak of perfection requires going through certain stages, higher stages cannot be reached without going through lower stages. This is because in the system of universe one cannot possibly skip a stage from among other stages. Therefore, one who wishes to reach the peak of perfection must go through the stage of professing the prophethood of Mu¦ammad who was the first manifestation of Allah and he must profess the Imamate of `Al¢, for he is the gate to the Holy Prophet’s knowledge:

أنَا مَدِينَةُ الْعِلْمِ، وَعَلِيٌّ بَابُهَا.

I am the city of knowledge and `Al¢ is its gate.[8]

Hence, it is impossible to reach the peak of perfection without resorting to `Al¢’s Imamate and benefiting from his abundant knowledge. One who is inclined towards the peak of perfection must remove all doubts by following Ahl al-Bayt before beginning his spiritual journey, engage in worship and good deeds; and assistance to his fellow human beings, for without adhering to Ahl al-Bayt, one cannot follow Allah’s Messenger nor can he meet Allah.

Addressing Imam `Al¢, Allah’s Messenger says:

مَنْ سَرَّهُ أنْ يَلْقَى اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ آمِناً مُطَهَّراً لأ يَحْزُنُهُ الْفَزَعُ الأكْبَرُ فَلْيَتَوَلَّكَ وَلْيَتَوَلَّ ابْنَيْكَ الْحَسَنَ وَالْحُسَيْنَ، وَعَلِيَّ بْنَ الْحُسَيْنِ وَمُحَمَّدَ بْنَ عَلِيٍّ وَجَعْفَرَ بْنَ مُحَمَّدٍ وَمُوسَى بْنَ جَعْفَرٍ وَعَلِيَّ بْنَ مُوسَى وَمُحَمَّداً وَعَلِيّاً وَالْحَسَنَ ثُمَّ الْمَهْدِيَّ، وَهُوَ خَاتَمُهُمْ.

Whoever is pleased to meet Allah safe, purified and not sad about the horror of the Judgment Day must wholeheartedly accept the leadership of you, your two sons—°asan and °usayn—`Al¢ ibn °usayn, Mu¦ammad ibn `Al¢, Ja`far ibn Mu¦ammad, M£s¡ ibn Ja`far, `Al¢ ibn M£s¡, Mu¦ammad, `Al¢, °asan and then al-Mahd¢; their seal.[9]

In an important narration, Allah’s Messenger is reported as saying:

مَا بَالُ أقْوَامٍ إذَا ذُكِرَ عِنْدَهُمْ آلُ إبْرَاهِيمَ فَرِحُوا وَاسْتَبْشَرُوا، وَإذَا ذُكِرَ عِنْدَهُمْ آلُ مُحَمَّدٍ اشْمَأزَّتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ؟ وَالَّذِي نَفْسُ مُحَمَّدٍ بِيَدِهِ، لَوْ أنَّ عَبْداً جَاءَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ بِعَمَلِ سَبْعِينَ نَبِيّاً مَا قَبِلَ اللهُ ذَلِكَ مِنْهُ حَتَّى يَلْقَاهُ بِوِلأيَتِي وَوِلأيَةِ أهْلِ بَيْتِي.

What is the matter with the people who get happy whenever they are reminded of the family of Ibr¡h¢m but they are disturbed whenever they are reminded of the Family of Mu¦ammad? By Allah in whose Hand is Mu¦ammad’s life (I swear), if on the Judgment Day a servant comes with the deeds of seventy prophets, Allah will not accept those deeds unless he meets Him bearing love for me and my Ahl al- Bayt.[10]

In al-Ziy¡rah al-J¡mi`ah al-Kab¢rah, Imam al-H¡d¢ (a.s) says:

وَأشْرَقَتِ الأرْضُ بِنُورِكُمْ، وَفازَ الْفائِزُونَ بِوِلايَتِكُمْ، بِكُمْ يُسْلَكُ إِلَى الرِّضْوانِ، وَعَلى مَنْ جَحَدَ وِلايَتَكُمْ غَضَبُ الرَّحْمَنِ.

Your light lights up the earth; those who love and cherish you attain their end and conduct themselves to Paradise; and those who forsake your friendship earn displeasure of the Most Compassionate Lord.

One who is inclined towards the peak of Perfection must first get to know Ahl al-Bayt and then adhere to them. In this connecting, the Holy Qur’¡n says:

If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you. (3:31)

If you love the peak of perfection, follow the light of the heavens and the earth and the manifestation of the chief Name so that you will become one of Allah’s favorite servants. Love for Ahl al-Bayt has its roots in the love for the peak of perfection that is sought by everyone instinctively. If Ahl al-Bayt are favorites, it is because they are the best path for meeting Allah. In al-Ziy¡rah al-J¡mi`ah al-Kab¢rah, Imam al-H¡d¢ (a.s) says:

نَحْنُ الصِّرَاطُ الْمُسْتَقِيمُ.

We are the straight path.

Ahl al-Bayt are not only the path but they are Allah’s cord extended from heaven to the earth. Holding fast by the covenant of Allah can lead us to the peak of perfection.

Furthermore, Ahl al-Bayt are extended from Allah’s grace which is the truth of Mu¦ammad to all borders of the earth:

Have you not considered the work of your Lord, how he extends the shade? (25:45)

Whoever is inclined towards the peak of perfection will grasp it in order to reach Allah:

And seek means of nearness to Him. (5:35)

 



[1] Al-Firdaws: 54/1.

[2] Al-Durr al-Manth£r: 606/6.

[3] `Ilal al-Shar¡’i`: 1231/1, ° 1.

[4] Al-Am¡l¢ by Shaykh al-±£s¢, 561.

[5] Al-K¡f¢: 182/2, ° 16.

[6] Al-K¡f¢: 400/2.

[7] Tahdh¢b al-A¦k¡m: 97/6, ° 1.

[8] Al-Am¡l¢ by Shaykh al-¯ad£q: 343, ° 1.

[9] Kit¡b al-Ghaybay by al-±£s¢: 136.

[10] Al-Am¡l¢; 140.

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