Commentary On Kumayl Supplication

BOOK ID

Author(s): Allama Husayn Ansariyan

Translator(s): Hamideh Elahinia

Publisher(s): Ansariyan Publications - Qum

Category: Imam Ali Supplications

Topic Tags: Dua Kumayl

Featured Category: Spirituality

Person Tags: Kumayl Ibn Ziyad Imam Ali

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This book presents a detailed commentary- phrase by phrase- of Dua (Supplication of ) Kumayl taught to the esteemed companion Kumayl ibn Ziyad by Imam Ali (AS).

Publisher’s Foreword

Supplication (du’a') is man’s dialogue with his Lord and the connecting rope between the creature and his Creator. Intellectual scholars consider du’a’ to be practical compliance with monotheism. This can be particularly evidenced through the Prophets and the Ahl al-Bayt (as) who have given considerable importance to du’a’. The Supplication of Kumayl (or Du’a’ Kumayl) establishes itself as one of the most significant supplications and is regarded as a resource of Divine salvation, since it interweaves paramount mystical contents. Thus, it has been referred to as the ‘source of all supplications’.

According to reliable narratives, Du’a’ Kumayl’s origin is divine; it was the words of al-Khadhir spoken by our master and the commander of the believers, Imam ‘Ali ibn Abi-Talib (as). Owing to this fact, Du’a’ Kumayl has occupied a salient rank in the view of the Household of the Prophet (SAWW) who have shown it considerable importance.

In view of that, the Du’a’ Kumayl is looked at as a reflective school that contains significant spiritual and humanitarian issues of man’s everyday activities. The well-versed professor, Shaykh Husayn Ansariyan, has undertaken the mission of annotating and commenting on this magnificent supplication,

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and he has actually excelled in this field since he has interpreted it using reliable Muslim references in addition to including a thoughtful attachment to this noble supplication.

His one and only aim has been to increase awareness of the words and significances of this supplication in the conscience and perception of man. As a result, the commentaries of this scholar have been based upon fundamentals derived from the Holy Qur'an, reliable narrations, and mystical knowledge.

Based on the commentator’s spiritual and sentimental connection with this noble supplication, his commentaries are full of knowledge, perception, and enlightened insight.

Presenting this wonderful book to the dear readers, the Ansariyan Publications hopes that the seekers of knowledge and Islamic education will find it to be a window of detecting the features of this noble supplication.

Ansariyan Publications

Holy Qum - Iran

Author’s Preface

At age eleven, I would attend a religious session during holy nights of Ramadhan, along with my father. In that session, the late Ayatollah Sayyid Muhammad Lali Zari, who was a reverend scholar, would enlighten people with an eloquent speech. He would also recite the holy supplication of Kumayl in the darkness of Thursday nights, with eyes filled with tears, heart pierced and a tone so divine. No one attended that session except those who were greatly impressed by the supplication of Kumayl combined with the effective tenor of the late Ayatollah.

Like other aspirants, I, too, was attracted to this great supplication through his warm tone; a supplication which has come from

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the heart of the Commander of the Believers in order to purify people’s souls and urge the sinners for repentance.

I managed to memorize this supplication three days after I had heard it for the first time. And then, I recited it on Thursday nights for my family members or friends.

Sometime after my coming to Qom Seminary for studying theology, I began preaching, by Allah’s Mercy. I felt it necessary to recite Kumayl supplication in my Thursday night sessions which after some time got very popular throughout Iran as well as abroad and people attended them eagerly. Some people obtained spiritual benefits from the sessions too. On the auspicious night of Imam ‘Ali’s (as) birthday, Hujjat Al-Islam Rahimian prompted me to write a commentary on the supplication, so that people could engage in it more profoundly and take part in the Kumayl sessions with more insight.

I finally managed to write a commentary on the holy Kumayl supplication and now it is up to the readers to benefit from it.

Finally I should appreciate the assistance of my friends in the research section of Dar Al-‘Irfan Publications, who have edited and prepared the work for being published.

Husayn Ansariyan

Note from Translator

All Praise is to Allah, Lord of the worlds, Who destined me to translate this sacred du’a’ into English. Kumayl’s Supplication is one of the most glorious Islamic du’a’s which is resorted to, by the believers, for the forgiveness of sins, increase in sustenance, and protection against enemies. It contains numerous rich meanings and

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heavenly themes that requires to be explained in order to be understood thoroughly.

I sincerely dedicate this miniscule attempt of introducing Islamic teachings throughout the world to the holy presence of Prophet Muhammad (S), peace be upon him and his pure progeny, who endured numerous hardships for the growth of Islam.

The challenges of translating texts in general and the demanding translation of Islamic works in particular are quite obvious. It requires a deep native-like knowledge of the English language combined with a moderate understanding of Islamic themes. I hope my effort in trying to convey the message has not been in vain. Thus, I greatly need the sincere comments from the readers, both natives and non-natives of English, on the quality of the work.

It will be very kind of you to send me messages either to Ansariyan Publication’s mailing address or my own email address at haminia@gmail.com [12].

Hamideh Elahinia

Du’a’ (supplication) in a Glance

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Du’a’ is the expression of deprivation to the One.

Du’a’ is the pronunciation of poverty to the Eternal Absolute.

Du’a’ is seeking assistance of the powerless from the All-Powerful.

Du’a’ is the demonstration of humility to the Omnipotent.

Du’a’ is loved by the Almighty, and is dear to the mystic and the miserable.

Du’a’ in the Holy Qur’an

The Almighty, who is the Revealer of knowledge and wisdom, states in His Qur’an:

قُلْ مَا یَعْبَأُ بِکُمْ رَبِّی لَوْلا دُعَاؤُکُمْ فَقَدْ کَذَّبْتُمْ فَسَوْفَ یَکُونُ لِزَامًا.

Say (O’ Muhammad to the disbelievers): My Lord would not concern Himself with you, but for your prayers. (25:77)

Du’a’ is a tool for attracting God’s attention and

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blessings. His attention removes calamity from the life of one who prays, and brings about blessings for him/her.

The All-Knowing Lord says in Qur’an:

وَإِذَا سَأَلَکَ عِبَادِی عَنِّی فَإِنِّی قَرِیبٌ أُجِیبُ دَعْوَهَ الدَّاعِی إِذَا دَعَانِی.

And when My servant question thee concerning Me, then surely I am close (to them). I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he calleth unto Me. (2:186)

No one is as close to the man as his creator, Allah. He is the One who has created man, fashioning him in the womb, and then transferring him to this world. He bestows His material and spiritual blessings unto man, sent the prophets to guide him, and granted him the Divine Qur’an and the Immaculate Imams (as).

Allah has created water for the thirst of man and food for his hunger. He cures man’s diseases and improves his health. He discards man’s loneliness with a spouse, children, and friends, and his starkness with various kinds of clothes. Allah makes man cherished by the others, and maintains his dignity before them. Allah solves his problems, however difficult they may seem. Who is so closely and intently aware of man’s deepest needs and can provide him with all these blessings, except Allah? He is indeed closer to man than anyone else. Hence He says in Qur’an:

وَلَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الإِنْسَانَ وَنَعْلَمُ مَا تُوَسْوِسُ بِهِ نَفْسُهُ وَنَحْنُ أَقْرَبُ إِلَیْهِ مِنْ حَبْلِ الْوَرِیدِ.

We verily created a man and We know what his soul whispereth to him, and We are nearer to him than his jugular vein.

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(50:16)

In spite of being superior to all others in terms of wisdom and insight, aware of the unseen more than others, and knowing the reality as it is, the prophets (as) too were extensively devoted to du’a’. They spent part of their time, both at day and night, to attach themselves to this firm and reliable string, and stand humbly before Allah. They considered du’a’ as the means to strengthen the mind, purify the soul, and solve problems.

The holy prophets (as) knew for sure that no suppliant ends his du’a’ except that Allah grants his requests to him from His presence. They hence believed in the fulfillment of du’a’ and humbly asked Allah to grant their supplication. The holy Qur’an states this fact so clearly from Prophet Abraham’s enlightened soul and purified speech:

الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِی وَهَبَ لِی عَلَی الْکِبَرِ إِسْمَاعِیلَ وَإِسْحَاقَ إِنَّ رَبِّی لَسَمِیعُ الدُّعَاءِ.

Praise be to Allah who hath given me, in my old age, Ishmael and Isaac! Lo! My Lord is indeed the Hearer of Prayer. (14:39)

Zechariah requested God, with the power of du’a’, to grant him a child. God fulfilled his desire and bestowed on him John, though his wife was barren. (19:5-9)

Following his disciples’ request, the Christ asked Allah to descend a heavenly table spread with food. The Almighty God accepted his prayer and send down for him and his disciples a table spread with foods from heaven. (5:112-115)

The Powerful has ordered His servants to pray in all situations, either in happiness or sorrow, with

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a humble heart and a tearful eye, demanding their needs from Him and be hopeful of the acceptance of their supplication. The Omniscient has also assured to consign to hell those who are too proud to serve Him:

وَقَالَ رَبُّکُمْ ادْعُونِی أَسْتَجِبْ لَکُمْ إِنَّ الَّذِینَ یَسْتَکْبِرُونَ عَنْ عِبَادَتِی سَیَدْخُلُونَ جَهَنَّمَ دَاخِرِینَ.

And your Lord hath said: Pray unto me and I will hear your prayer. Lo! Those who scorn My service, they will enter hell, disgraced. (40:60)

Du’a’ in Traditions

Allah’s benevolence toward His creatures is extended and comprehensive, especially for mankind. Allah’s presence is not an abode of hopelessness or stinginess. His generosity and forgiveness is relentless, as is His longing for His servants to pray to Him. Allah addressed Prophet David (as):

“Say to My servants: Why don’t you befriend Me, since I deserve friendship? I am a God of no miserliness, there’s no ignorance in My Omniscience, no incapacity in My Forbearance, and no alternation in My Attributes or My Speech. My Mercy and Forgiveness is unvarying and constant. I am the friend of him who befriends Me, and I accompany him who invokes on Me in his solitude. O David! He who seeks Me finds Me; and he who finds Me deserves not to lose Me. O David! Blessing is from Me but My servants thank others; I ward off calamity but they seek it from others. Their safe haven is My Presence, but they seek refuge from others, though finally they return to Me.”

A surplus of such meaningful texts in Islamic books,

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along with Qur’anic verses, give good tidings to the servants to be hopeful of God’s Mercy. The servants should, therefore, pray and ask their prerequisites from God. That’s why the traditions narrated by the Ahl Al-Bayt (as) have all stressed the importance of du’a’. It is narrated from the holy Prophet of Islam (S):

إنَّ الدُّعَاءَ هُوَ العِبَادَهُ.

Du’a’ is indeed a worship.(1)

الدُّعَاءُ مُخُّ العِبَادَهِ.

Du’a’ is the core of worship.(2)

Imam al-Baqir (as) stated:

أفْضَلُ العِبَادَهِ الدُّعَاءُ.

The most preferable of worships is du’a.’(3)

The Imam (as) also narrates:

مَا مِنْ شَیْءٍ أفْضَلُ عِنْدَ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ مِنْ أنْ یُسْأَلَ وَیُطْلَبَ مِمَّا عِنْدَهُ، وَمَا أحَدٌ أبْغَضُ إلَی اللهِ مِمَّنْ یَسْتَکْبِرُ عَنْ عِبَادَتِهِ وَلاَ یَسْأَلُ مَا عِنْدَهُ.

Nothing is more dear to Allah than asking Him for His blessings. And no one is more destitute before Allah than one who is arrogant of supplicating in His Presence.(4)

The following is narrated from Amir al-Mu’minin (as):

أَحَبُّ الأَعْمَالِ إلَی اللهِ تَعَالَی فِی الأَرْضِ الدُّعَاءُ.

“The most desirable deed on all the earth is supplication to Allah.”(5)

الدُّعَاءُ مَفَاتِیحُ النَّجَاحِ، وَمَقَالِیدُ الفَلاَحِ، وَخَیْرُ الدُّعَاءِ مَا صَدَرَ عَنْ صَدْرٍ نَقِیٍّ وَقَلْبٍ تَقِیٍّ، وَفِی الْمُنَاجَاهِ سَبَبُ النَّجَاهِ، وَبِالإخْلاَصِ یَکُونُ الخَلاَصُ، فَإذَا اشْتَدَّ الْفَزَعُ فَإلَی اللهِ المَفْزَعُ.

Du’a’ is the key to success. The best du’a’ is the one uttered from a purified soul and heart. The means to salvation is sincerity in du’a’. When the problems cause restlessness, the solution is seeking refuge in God’s Presence.(6)

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as):

إذَا نَزَلَ الْبَلاءُ فَعَلَیْکُمْ بِالدُّعَاءِ وَالتَّضَرُّعِ إلَی اللهِ.

When Allah descends a calamity, come in Allah’s presence with

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 2/282, Kitab Al-Azkar wa Al-Da’awat, Chapter 2.
2- Ibid.
3- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 2/283, Kitab Al-Azkar wa Al-Da’awat, Chapter 2.
4- Al-Kafi: 2/466, The chapter on fazl Al-Do’a…, Tradition 2.
5- Al-Kafi: 2/467, The chapter on fazl Al-Do’a…, Tradition 8.
6- Al-Kafi: 2/468, Chapter Inna al-do’a silah al-mu’min, tradition 2; Mahajja al-bayza’: 2/284, Bab al-thani fi adab al-do’a…

du’a’ and lamentation.(1)

عَلَیْکَ بِالدُّعَاءِ، فَإنَّ فِیهِ شِفَاءً مِنْ کُلِّ دَاءٍ.

Du’a’ is necessity for you, since it is the solution to every problem.(2)

The Value of Du’a’ in a Congregation

When the believers supplicate to Allah in a congregation and ask their exigency in one voice, as one, their du’a’ is more likely to be answered, for in a group of people, there would surely be, a poor, a bereaved, or an ascetic whose prayer may attract God’s Mercy and Forgiveness. Based on what appears in Islamic teachings, Allah may accept the prayer of others too, for the sake of that person, forgive their sins and grant them their exigency. Many traditions have been narrated from the Prophet (S) and Ahl al-Bayt (as) in this regard, some of which are stated here:

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَا اجْتَمَعَ أرْبَعَهٌ قَطُّ عَلَی أمْرٍ وَاحِدٍ إلاّ تَفَرَّقوُا عَنْ إجَابَهٍ.

No four people congregate to pray for a single issue, unless their exigency is granted when they leave each other.(3)

The Holy Prophet (S) said:

لاَ یَجْتَمِعُ أرْبَعُونَ رَجُلاً فِی أمْرٍ وَاحِدٍ إلاّ اسْتَجَابُ اللهُ تَعَالَی لَهُمْ حَتَّی لَوْ دَعَوْا عَلَی جَبَلٍ لأَزَالُوهُ.

No forty men gather together to pray for a single issue, unless the Almighty God accepts their prayer; to the extent that if they pray against a mountain, it will collapse.(4)

The great Islamic scholar, Ibn Fahd Al-Hilli, narrates from “Wasa’il al-Shi’a” in his book “‘Uddat al-Da’i”:

Allah told Jesus through revelation:

یَا عِیسَی! تَقَرَّبْ إلَی المُؤمِنِینَ وَمُرْهُمْ أنْ یَدْعُونِی مَعَکَ.

O Jesus! Join the believers and order them to pray with you before My Presence!(5)

Imam Sadiq (as) states:

کَانَ

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/471, Bab Ilham al-do’a, tradition 2; Mahajja al-Bayza’: 2/284, Bab al-thani fi adab al-do’a…
2- Al-Kafi: 2/470, bab Inna al-do’a shifa’ min kolli da’, tradition 1; mahajja al-bayza’: 2/285, bab al-thani fi adab al-do’a…
3- Al-Kafi: 2/487, Bab l-Ijtima’ fi al-do’a, tradition 2; Jami’ ahadith shi’a: 19/ 354.
4- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 5/239, bab 36, tradition 5772; jami’ ahadith al-shi’a: 19/354.
5- Wasa’il al-Shi’a: 7/104, bab 38, tradition 8856.

أبِی عَلَیْهِ السَّلاَمُ إذَا حَزَنَهُ أمْرٌ جَمَعَ النِّسَاءَ وَالصِّبْیَانَ ثُمَّ دَعَا وَأَمَّنُوا.

My father always acted this way; whenever something made him sorrowful, he gathered women and children, then he prayed and they said Amen!(1)

Despair; the state of the disbeliever

The supplicant should be aware that it is Almighty God who has invited him to pray and has guaranteed the acceptance of the supplication. Accepting the prayer and granting the supplicant’s exigency is easy for Allah, since each and every world’s creature is under His Absolute Power, and He provides the grounds for the fulfillment of His servant’s exigency with a single order.

It is, therefore, not right to become hopeless in the Presence of God, whose Insight, Mercy and Forgiveness is infinite, especially when praying. Despair, as specified in the Holy Qur’an, is the attribute of the disbelievers:

یَا بَنِیَّ اذْهَبُوا فَتَحَسَّسُوا مِنْ یُوسُفَ وَأَخِیهِ وَلا تَیْئَسُوا مِنْ رَوْحِ اللَّهِ إِنَّهُ لا یَیْئَسُ مِنْ رَوْحِ اللَّهِ إِلاَّ الْقَوْمُ الکَافِرُونَ.

Go, O my sons! And ascertain concerning Joseph and his brother, and despair not of the Spirit of Allah. Lo! None despaireth of the Spirit of Allah save disbelieving folk. (12:87)

The Holy Qur’an strongly recommends against being hopeless of God’s Mercy:

لا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَهِ اللَّهِ.

Despair not of the Mercy of Allah! (39:53)

The Prophet of Islam (S) states:

اَلفَاجِرُ الرَّاجِی لِرَحْمَهِ اللهِ تَعَالَی أقْرَبُ مِنْهَا مِنَ العَابِدِ المُقَنَّطِ.

Allah’s Mercy is nearer to a hopeful sinner than to a hopeless worshipper.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

الْیَأسُ مِنْ رَوْحِ اللهِ أشَدُّ بَرْداً مِنَ الزَّمْهَرِیرِ.

The cold of despair from God’s Mercy is colder than intense cold.(3)

Despair

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1- Wasa’il al-Shi’a: 7/105, bab 39, tradition 8860.
2- Kanz Al-Ummal: 5869; Mizan al-Hikmah: 10/5046; Al-Ghanut, tradition 17109.
3- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 12/59, chapter 64, tradition 13507.

from Allah’s Mercy is considered as a major sin in accordance to Islamic teachings and traditions, and the hopeless is promised chastisement. The supplicant should not despair, in case his/her supplication is not answered. Perhaps the acceptance of supplication has not been in accord with God’s expediency, the precise setting of acceptance may not have come, or God wants the supplicant to continue supplicating for his/her demand.

Moreover Allah may want to postpone granting the supplicant’s exigency to the Day of Judgment, in order to make the yielding eternal. Therefore, losing hope of Allah’s Compassion is in no way acceptable from a believer. Many significant traditions have been narrated in Islamic books, considering du’a’ and its acceptance. A few instances come here:

Imam Sadiq (as) narrates:

إنَّ الْعَبْدَ لَیَدْعُو اللهَ فَیُقُولُ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ لِلْمَلَکَیْنِ: قَدِ اسْتَجَبْتُ لَهُ، وَلکِنْ إحْبِسُوهُ بِحَاجَتِهِ فَإنَّی أُحِبُّ أنْ أسْمَعَ صَوْتَهُ، وإنَّ العَبْدَ لَیَدْعُو فَیَقُولُ اللهُ تَبَارَکَ وَتَعَالَی: عَجِّلُوا لَهُ حَاجَتَهُ فَإنِّی أبْغَضُ صَوْتَهُ.

Surely, a servant prays and Allah says to two angels: ‘I accepted his supplication, but don’t grant his demand so that he continues praying, because I desire to hear his voice.’ And another servant prays, so Allah says: ‘Give him his demand promptly; I hate his voice.’(1)

Mansur Sayqal says: I asked Imam Sadiq (as): Perhaps someone prays, and his supplication is accepted but not granted at once. Imam confirmed it. I asked: What is the reason? Is it for him to pray more? Imam confirmed it again.(2)

Conditions of Du’a’

If the supplicant wants his du’a’ to be

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 489, chapter min abta’at alayhi al-ijaba, traditions 2 and 3.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/489.

accepted, she/he should meet certain conditions, which are enumerated by Ahl al-Bayt (as) in valid books such as “Usul Al-Kafi”, “Mahajjat al-Bayza’ “, “Wasa’il al-Shi’a”, “Jami’ al-Ahadith al-Shi’a”, etc.

Here’s a list of such conditions:

Islamic purity like wudhu’ (ablution), ghusl (ritual washing) and tayammum (ablution with soil), fulfilling the rights of the people (haqqunnas), sincerity, precise pronunciation of the du’a’, rightfully earned income, observing and strengthening kinship ties (silatur-rahim), charity (sadaqah) before du’a’, obedience to Allah, abstinence from sins, rectification of deeds, du’a’ at dawn, du’a’ in watr (name of a salat), du’a’ at the true dawn, du’a’ at sunrise, du’a’ between noon and evening prayer on Wednesday, and finally praising the Prophet (S) and his progeny (salawat) before du’a’.(1)

Thursday Night

Thursday night is considered among the best times for du’a’ in the traditions of Ahl al-Bayt (as), to that extent that it is almost equal to the Qadr night(2) in value. The insightful and pious theologians proclaim: Spend Thursday night with praying, worshipping, and invoking Allah until morning, if you can, because the Compassionate sends the angels to the first heaven to increase the virtues of the believers and abolish their sins.

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as) in a valid tradition:

إنَّ لِلجُمُعَهِ حقّاً فَإیَّاکَ أنْ تُضَیِّعَ حُرْمَتَهُ أوْ تُقَصِّرَ فِی شَیْءٍ مِنْ عِبَادَهِ اللهِ وَالتَّقَرُّبِ إلَیْهِ بِالعَمَلِ الصَّالِحِ وَتَرْکِ الْمَحَارِمَ کُلِّهَا فَإنَّ اللهَ تَعَالَی یُضَاعِفُ فِیهِ الْحَسَنَاتِ وَیَمْحُو السَّیِّئَاتِ وَیَرْفَعُ فِیهِ الدَّرَجَاتِ، وَیَوْمُُهُ مِثْلُ لَیْلَتِهِ فَإن اسْتَطَعْتَ أنْ تُحْیِیَهَا بِالدُّعَاءِ وَالصَّلاَهِ فَافْعَلْ فَإنَّ اللهَ تَعَالَی یُرْسِلُ فِیهَا الْمَلائِکَهَ إلَی السَّمَاءِ الدُّنْیَا

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/466 in different chapters; Mahajjat al-Bayza’: 268-349.
2- The 27th night of Ramadan; the night when the Quran was revealed.

لِتُضَاعَفَ فِیهَا الْحَسَناتُ وَتُمْحَی فِیهَا السَّیِّئَاتُ وَإنَّ اللهَ وَاسِعٌ کَرِیم.ٌ

Verily, Fridays enjoy rights (incumbent upon people). Therefore, beware of violating Fridays’ sanctity through showing shortcoming in acts of worship and instead seek nearness to Almighty Allah by means of righteous deeds and abandonment of all forbidden acts. Certainly, on Fridays Almighty Allah doubles up the rewards (of good deeds), erases forgivingly punishments (for evildoings), and raises the ranks (of faith).

Friday daytimes are similar to Friday nights; therefore, you may, when possible, stay up supplicating and offering prayers to Almighty Allah who, at that night, orders the angels to descend to the lower heavens in order to double the rewards and erase the transgressions. Most surely, Allah is Ample-giving and All-generous.(1)

إنَّ المُؤمِنَ لَیَدْعُو فِی الحَاجَهِ فَیُؤَخِّرُ اللهُ حَاجَتَهُ الَّتِی سَأَلَ إلَی یَوْمِ الجُمُعَهِ لِیَخُصَّهُ بِفَضْلِهِ.

The believer may pray for an exigency and Allah postpones answering him to grant him his demand on Thursday night.(2)

لَمَّا سَألَ إخْوَهُ یُوسُفَ یَعقُوبَ أنْ یَسْتَغْفِرَ لَهُمْ، قَالَ: (سَوْفَ أَسْتَغْفِرُ لَکُمْ رَبّی) ثُمَّ أخَّرَ الاسْتِغْفَارَ إلی السَّحَرِ مِنْ لَیْلَهِ الْجُمُعَهِ کَیْ یُسْتَجَابَ لَهُ.

When Prophet Josef’s brothers asked their father, Prophet Jacob, to seek forgiveness for them from Allah, Jacob said: ‘I will seek forgiveness for you soon.’ And he delayed seeking forgiveness for them until Friday dawn so that his exigency will be answered.(3)

Imam al-Baqir (as) says:

إنَّ اللهَ تَعالَی لَیَأمُرُ مَلَکاً فَیُنَادِی کُلَّ لَیْلَهِ جُمُعَهٍ مِنْ فَوْقِ عَرْشِهِ مِنْ أوَّلِ اللَّیْلِ إلَی آخِرِهِ: ألاَ عَبْدٌ مُؤمِنٌ یَدعُونِی لآخِرَتِهِ وَدُنْیاهُ قَبْلَ طُلُوعِ الفَجْرِ فَأُجِیبُهُ؟ ألاَ عَبْدٌ مُؤمِنٌ

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1- Mafatih al-Jinan, pp.13.
2- Da’awat Rawandi:35, tradition 83; Bihar al-Anwar: 86/273, chapter 2, tradition 17.
3- Al-Muqna’a: 155; Bihar al-Anwar: 86/271, chapter 2, tradition 13 19.

یَتُوبُ إلَیَّ مِنْ ذُنُوبِهِ قَبْلَ طُلُوعِ الفَجْرِ فَأتُوبُ عَلَیْهِ؟ ألاَ عَبْدٌ مُؤمِنٌ قَدْ قَتَّرْتُ عَلَیْهِ رِزْقَهُ فَیَسْأَلُنِی الزِّیَادَهَ فِی رِزْقِهِ قَبْلَ طُلُوعِ الْفَجْرِ فَأزِیدُهُ وَأوسِعُ عَلَیْهِ؟ ألاَ عَبْدٌ مُؤمِنٌ سَقِیمٌ فَیَسْألُنِی أنْ أشْفِیَهُ قَبْلَ طُلُوعِ الفَجْرِ فَأُعَافِیهِ؟ ألاَ عَبْدٌ مُؤمِنٌ مَغْمُومٌ مَحْبُوسٌ یَسْألُنِی أنْ أُطْلِقَهُ مِنْ حَبْسِهِ وَأُفَرِّجُ عَنْهُ قَبْلَ طُلُوعِ الفَجْرِ فَأُطْلِقُهُ وَأُخَلّی سَبِیلَهُ؟ ألاَ عَبْدٌ مُؤمِنٌ مَظْلُومٌ یَسْألُنِی أنْ آخُذَ لَهُ بِظُلامَتِهِ قَبْلَ طُلُوعِ الفَجْرِ فَأَنْتَصِرُ لَهُ وَآخُذُ بِظُلامَتِهِ؟ قال: فَلا یَزالُ یُنادِی حَتَّی یَطْلُعَ الفَجْرُ.

During every Thursday night, Allah orders an angel to call on behalf of the Almighty: Is there any believer who calls Me for this world and the Hereafter so that I may grant his exigency? Is there any believer who repents for his sins before the sunrise, so that I may forgive him? Is there any believer who asks for the abundance of his sustenance, which I have made sparse, before the sunrise, so that I may increase it?

Is there any sick believer who asks Me to heal him before the sunrise, so that I make him well? Is there any imprisoned believer who asks me to free him before the sunrise, so that I grant him his freedom? Is there any oppressed believer who asks Me to avenge the oppressor, so that I restore his rights? He will keep saying so until dawn.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

إجْتَنِبوا المَعاصِیَ لَیْلَهَ الجُمُعَهِ فَإنَّ السَّیِّئَهَ مُضَاعَفَهٌ وَالحَسَنَهَ مُضَاعَفَهٌ. وَمَنْ تَرَکَ مَعْصِیَهَ اللهِ لَیْلَهَ الجُمُعَهِ غَفَرَ اللهُ لَهُ کُلَّ مَا سَلَفَ، وَمَنْ بَارَزَ اللهَ لَیْلَهَ الجُمُعَهِ

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 86/282, chapter 2, tradition 27.

بِمَعْصِیَهٍ أخَذَهُ اللهُ بِکُلِّ مَا عَمِلَ فِی عُمُرِهِ وَضَاعَفَ عَلَیْهِ العَذَابَ بِهَذِهِ المَعْصِیَهِ.

Avoid committing sins on Thursday nights, since the punishment is double then, just as the recompense for virtues is multifold. Whoever avoids sins on Thursday night, Allah will forgive his previous sins. And whoever openly commits sins on Thursday night, Allah will chastise him for his lifetime of sins and will multiply the punishment of his Thursday night sins, particularly due to the violation of the sanctity of Thursday night.(1)

Many prayers and supplications have been mentioned for Thursday night, among which du’a’ Kumayl has a special position.

Kumayl Ibn Ziyad Nakha’i

Both, great Shi’a and Sunni scholars have admired Kumayl for his strong belief, purified soul, moral conduct, and sincere intentions. They agree on Kumayl’s justice and greatness. Kumayl is among the noble disciples of Amir al-Mu’minin (as) and Imam Hasan (as).(2) Amir al-Mu’minin too, has considered Kumayl as his ten most faithful disciples.(3) Kumayl has been one of the sincerest lovers and friends of Imam ‘Ali (as).(4)

The recommendations and bequests that Imam ‘Ali (as) has made to Kumayl indicate the latter’s strong belief and great insight. The sunnis, who have never had a favorable opinion about the disciples of Ahl al-Bayt (as), too, consider Kumayl as a trustee in all issues.(5) The ascetics believe Kumayl to knowing Imam ‘Ali’s secrets and spiritual knowledge. Kumayl accompanied the Great Prophet of Islam (S) for eighteen years and benefited from the blessings of prophethood. He was martyred by Hajjaj Ibn Yusuf Thaqafi,

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 86/283, chapter 2, tradition 28.
2- Mustadrakat Ilm Rijal: 6/314.
3- Rasa’il Sayyid Murtaza.
4- Bihar al-Anwar: 33/399, chapter 23, tradition 620.
5- Mustadrakat Ilm Rijal: 6/314.

due to his magnitude, which had already been informed to him in advance, by, Imam Ali (as).

When Hajjaj Ibn Yusuf was appointed as the ruler of Iraq by the Umayyid ruler, he sought after Kumayl to kill him for his affection for the Ahl al-Bayt (as), as being a shi’a was the greatest sin in the Umayyid regime. Kumayl hid himself, and Hajjaj stopped the release of any pension for his relatives from baytul mal (public treasury).

Being informed of Hajjaj’s action, Kumayl said: “I will not be alive long so I don’t want any of my relatives to be deprived of their pension because of me.” He left his hiding place and went to Hajjaj. Hajjaj told him: “I was looking for you in order to punish you.” Kumayl said: “Do as you wish, since I will not live long. You and I will return to Allah. My master, ‘Ali, has informed me that you are my killer.” Then Hajjaj ordered to behead Kumayl who at that time was ninety years of age. His holy tomb is in Thuwiah, a place between Najaf and Kufah, and the believers go for pilgrimage to it.

Du’a’ Kumayl

The vigilant believers consider the status of du’a’ Kumayl among other du’a’s as the status of man among the other creatures of the Almighty. In other words, they know du’a’ Kumayl as “Insan al-Ad’iyah”. The great scholar, researcher and reporter of ahadith, Allamah Majlisi regards du’a’ Kumayl as the best du’a’. Allamah Majlisi narrates from

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“Iqbal” of Sayyid Ibn Tawus in his book “Zad al-Ma’ad”:

Kumayl said: “One day, I was with my master ‘Ali (as) in Kufah. We were talking about Sha’ban the fifteenth. Imam said: “One who spends that night worshipping and recites du’a’ Khidhr, his prayer will be answered for sure.” When Imam (as) returned home, I went to him. He said: “What do you want?” I answered: “I’ve come to you so that you may teach me du’a’ Khidhr.” He told me to sit down.

Then he said: “O Kumayl! When you memorize this du’a’, recite it every Thursday night, or once in a month, or once in a year or once in your lifetime, and Allah will save you from enemies, help you, extend your sustenance, and forgive your sins. O Kumayl! Your extended and faithful service has made me teach you such a blissful du’a’.” Then he said: “Write it down!” And he then recited it to me.

The divine theologist, Kaf’ami, writes in his book ‘Misbah’: “Amir al-Mu’minin (as) recited this du’a’ in prostration.”(1)

The supplicant should recite this du’a’ on Thursday night, facing the direction of the qiblah, sincerely and humbly. This way the supplication is more likely to be answered.(2) The supplicant should also present himself before Allah with a tearful eye which is so valuable before the Almighty that it hastens the forgiveness of sins and attraction of His blessings.(3)

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as):

مَا مِنْ شَیْءٍ إلاَّ وَلَهُ کَیْلٌ وَوَزْنٌ، إلاَّ الدُّمُوعَ؛ فَإنَّ القَطْرَهَ تُطْفِئُ بِحَاراً

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1- Misbah Kaf’ami: 555.
2- Mahajja Al-Bayza’: 2/285, Adab al-do’a wa hia ‘ashra.
3- Ibid.

مِنَ النَّارِ، وَلَو أنَّ باکِیاً بَکَی فِی أُمَّهٍ لَرُحِمُوا.

Everything has a special scale except tears; a drop of tear extinguishes oceans of fire. Allah forbids inferno from burning a tearful eye. In fact if there’s one tearful person (from Allah’s fear) in any nation, all the people will be forgiven.(1)

کُلُّ عَیْنٍ بَاکِیَهٌ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ إلاَّ ثَلاثَهً: عَیْنٌ غُضَّتْ عَنْ مَحَارِمِ اللهِ، وَعَیْنٌ سَهِرَتْ فِی طَاعَهِ اللهِ، وَعَیْنٌ بَکَتْ فِی جَوْفِ اللَّیْلِ مِنْ خَشْیَهِ اللهِ.

All the people are tearful in the Hereafter except three: one who closes his eyes to what Allah forbade, one who remains alive for Allah, and one cries for the fear of Allah at midnight.(2)

Commentary of: “Bismillah, ar-Rahman, ar-Rahim”

point

بسم الله الرحمن الرحیم

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.

There are some reasons why du’a’ Kumayl begins with such an illuminating phrase.

Amir al-Mu’minin (as) narrated from the Holy Prophet (S) who narrated from Allah that the Almighty that He stated:

کُلُّ أمْرٍ ذِی بَالٍ لاَ یُذْکَرُ ’بِسْمِ اللهِ‘ فِیهِ فَهُوَ أبْتَرُ.

Any important job which is done without Allah’s remembrance, is tarnished and useless.(3)

The late Tabarsi narrates Imam Musa Ibn Ja’far (as) in his book ‘Makarim Al-Akhlaq’:

مَا مِنْ أحَدٍ دَهَمَهُ أمْرٌ یَغُمُّهُ أوْ کَرَبَتْهُ کُرْبَهٌ فَرَفَعَ رَأسَهُ إلَی السَّمَاءِ ثُمَّ قَالَ ثَلاثَ مَرَّاتٍ: ’بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِیمِ‘ إلاّ فَرَّجَ اللهُ کُرْبَتَهُ وَأذْهَبَ غَمَّهُ، إنْ شَاءَ اللهُ تَعَالَی.

There’s no grief-stricken individual who says ‘bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim’ three times while looking up to the sky, where in return Allah eliminates his grief, if He wills.(4)

We read in an important tradition:

لاَ یُرَدُّ دُعَاءٌ أوَّلُهُ ’بِسْمِ اللهِ

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/481, Bab Al-Buka’, tradition 1.
2- Al-Kafi, 2/80, Bab Ijtinab Al-Maharim, tradition 2.
3- Tafsir Imam Asgari: 25, Al-Iftitah bil-tasmiah…; Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 7/170, Bab 17, tradition 9032.
4- Makarim al-Akhlaq: 346, fil Muhimmat; Bihar al-Anwar: 92/ 159, Bab 15.

الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِیمِ‘.

A du’a’ which begins with bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim will not be rejected by Allah.(1)

The Messenger of Allah (S) counted the guards of hell as nineteen and said,

مَنْ أرَادَ أنْ یُنَجِّیَهُ اللهُ مِنَ الزَّبَانِیَهِ التِّسْعَهَ عَشَرَ فَلْیَقْرَأْ ’بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِیمِ‘، فَإنَّهَا تِسْعَهَ عَشَرَ حَرفاً لِیَجْعَلَ اللهُ لَهُ کُلَّ حَرْفٍ مِنْهَا جُنَّهً مِنْ وَاحِدٍ مِنْهُمْ.

One who wants Allah to save him from these guards should recite bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim which consists of nineteen letters, so that Allah will set each letter as a guard from the fire.(2)

It is narrated from the Messenger of Allah (S):

إذَا قَالَ المُعَلِّمُ لِلصَّبِیِّ: قُلْ ’بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِیمِ‘، فَقَالَ، کَتَبَ اللهُ بَرَاءَهً لِلصَّبِیِّ وَلأَبَوَیْهِ وَلِلمُعَلِّمِ.

When a teacher teaches ‘bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim’ to a child, the Exalted God sets the child, his parents and his teacher free from the fire.(3)

It is narrated from the Prophet (S): “My people are accounted for their deeds in the Hereafter, and their good deeds are superior to the bad deeds. The past nations will cry out, ‘Why do their minute good deeds exceed their mountain of bad deeds?’ The prophets of those nations will answer, ‘Because their speech has begun with three of Allah’s names: Allah, the All-beneficent (rahman), and the All-merciful (rahim). These three names are greater in weight than all the virtues and vices of mankind.”

It is narrated from Imam al-Ridha (as):

إنَّ ’بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِیمِ‘ تَقْتَرِبُ مِنَ الإسْمِ الأعْظَمِ اقْتِرَابَ سَوَادِ العَیْنِ مِنْ بَیاضِهَا.

The ‘bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim’ is as close to Allah’s chief name as is the blackness of eye to its whiteness.(4)

Certainly, if

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1- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 5/ 304, Bab 16, tradition 5929.
2- Jami’ Ahadith al-Shiah, Sayyid Borojerdi, 15:150.
3- Kashf al-Ghita’, Shaykh Kashif al-Ghita’, 2:299.
4- The traditions 4 to 7 are presented in the exegesis of fatihat ul-kitab the first chapter of holy Quran.

du’a’ begins with Allah’s principal name, the supplicant is more likely to be answered.

Connotations of Bismillahi

Great Arab grammarians believe that the Arabic word ‘ism (name)’ is derived from ‘sumuw’ meaning greatness. The All-Compassionate connected the preposition ‘bi (in)’ to ‘ism (name)’ in this phrase to connote that by reciting the phrase, the supplicant wants to beseech Allah. The supplicant should be aware that calling Allah is not sufficient; rather the soul should be purified through seeking forgiveness from the Almighty.

In fact calling Allah without purity of mind and sincerity of intention is considered disrespectful. The Almighty is in the highest and the most holy position, while man is in the lowest place and cannot promote his position, except by making a strong connection with Allah. That’s why the Merciful has set ‘bismillahi (in the Name of Allah)’ as the mediator between Himself and the human being.

An attentive mystic has stated that the Arabic letter ‘ba'’ (B) connotes the beginning of mystical treading onto the path to Allah, and from ‘ba'’ to ‘sin’ (S) which connotes the secret of knowing Allah, there is an endless desert of ignorance. Hiding of ‘alif’ (A) in this vast desert(1) implies that if the seeker does not dissolve his egotism in the light of Allah’s Unity, he will not reach ‘mim’ (M) which connotes the ultimate intention.

Some believe that ‘ba'’ (B) implies Allah’s Beneficence to all the people and especially to the ordinary people; ‘sin’ (S) implies the secret of His kindness to the noble, and

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1- Hiding here implies the position of ‘alif’ in ‘bismillahi’ which is not pronounced in English, or is hidden.

‘mim’ (M) is indicator of His Mercy to the most special nobles.

In the invaluable books ‘Al-Kafi’, ‘Tawhid Saduq’, ‘Ma’ani Al-Akhbar’ and ‘Tafsir Ayyashi’, it is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as): “Each of these three letters (in the word ‘bism’) implies one of the Glorious names of Allah; ‘ba'’ is Allah’s Brightness, ‘sin’ is Allah’s Eminence, and ‘mim’ is His Magnificence.

It is also stated that ‘ba'’ implies the Observant, ‘sin’ implies the All-Hearing, and ‘mim’ implies the Counter. It is as if Allah makes the supplicant aware that: I am the Observant; I can observe your visible and invisible deeds, so avoid hypocrisy in your action, I am the All-Hearing; I can hear the result of your deeds and supplications, so avoid useless speech, and I am the Counter; I can even count your breaths, so beware of every moment.

The glorified word ‘Allah’ is a comprehensive name for the Almighty, which is a combination of all the attributes of Allah. It is believed that three meanings are present in Allah:

1. Allah is the Eternal Being.

2. Human mind is astonished of knowing and seeking Him.

3. The return of all beings is towards Him.

It is said that the Arabic word ‘الله (Allah)’ is the Chief name of God and is the basis of His Unity, to that extent that if a disbeliever calls this name sincerely, his belief will be proved. This name is the beginning and end of everything, which is to be upright. Also the strength of risalat (prophet hood) and

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wilayat is based on this name, as it exists in the Arabic phrase ‘محمد رسول الله (Muhammad is Allah’s Messenger)’ and ‘علی ولی الله (‘Ali is Allah’s Intimate Servant)’.

Furthermore, if the first letter of the Arabic word ‘Allah (الله)’ is omitted, what remains is ‘lillahi (لله)’, which means ‘for Allah,’ as in the following Verse:

لِلَّهِ الأَمْرُ مِنْ قَبْلُ وَمِنْ بَعْدُ.

Allah's is the command before and after. (30:4)

If the first two letters are dropped, what remains is ‘lahu (له)’, which means (His) remains, as in the following Verse:

لَهُ الْمُلْکُ وَلَهُ الْحَمْدُ.

To Him belongs the kingdom, and to Him is all due praise. (64:1)

If the first three letters are dropped, what remains is ‘huwa (هو)”, which means ‘He’ implying Almighty Allah, as in the following Verse:

قُلْ هُوَ اللَّهُ أَحَدٌ.

Say: He, Allah, is One. (112:1)

As a result, the name, which has so many features, is definitely Allah’s Chief name.

The word “رحمن” (the Beneficent) is derived from “رحمت” (Mercy). Renowned Arab grammarians believe that it is a hyperbole. To Islamic scholars, the word means “the giver of universal mercy to all the creatures, apart from their service record”. “رحمن” also implies that Allah is inclined to assist all creatures and remove detriment from them. Examples of Allah’s blessings are presented in the holy Qur’an, chapter Al-Rahman (55).

Arab grammarians that believe that the word “رحیم” (the Merciful) is an adjectival simile, hence it implies continuity; that is the Mercy of Allah is permanent. This kind of Mercy is specific to the believers, as their virtues

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and appreciation of Allah’s blessings makes them worthy. We read in Islamic works that Mercy of the first kind involves Allah’s granting sustenance to all the creatures and humans either believer or disbeliever. The second kind of Mercy involves Allah’s granting spiritual blessings to human beings and also His forgiving the believers in this world and in the Hereafter.

In “رحمانیت” (Beneficence) and “رحیمیت” (Mercifulness) the meaning of soundness is involved; one is worldly soundness, the other is heavenly soundness. The second kind of Mercy includes the obedient whose prayers Allah accepts, and the disobedient whose sins He forgives.

Ibn Mubarak has stated: “رحمن” is the One who responds if you ask Him, and “رحیم” is the One who becomes wrathful is you don’t ask Him.

An ascetic has said: “The Almighty is “رحمن” in giving sustenance to the creatures and “رحیم” in forgiving the believers’ sins. For making a living, trust Him, not your own trading; but don’t give up trading which is unwise. For forgiveness of sins, trust Him, not your own deeds; but don’t give up deeds which is against Allah’s will.”

The servant is said to have three states: First, the state of a nonexistent creature who needed existence; second, the state of state of a living creature who desires to be permanent; third, the state of one in the Hereafter who needs Forgiveness. The servant in these three states needs Allah and His attributes, as reflected in these three names:

“الله”, who brings the servant from nonexistence to life;

“رحمن”, who

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provides the means for the servant to continue life;

“رحیم”, who will forgive the servant’s sins in the Hereafter.

Human being is composed of heart, body, and soul. Human heart finds knowledge and belief from “الله”, his body finds sustenance from “رحمن”, and the soul finds Mercy from “رحیم”. One whose heart, body and soul is associated with these three names of God, is free from everything and everyone except Allah, and contributes his mercy to other servants of Allah.

The Messenger of Allah (S) is narrated as saying: “One who says “بسم الله الرحمن الرحیم” and “لا حول و لا قوه الا بالله العلی العظیم” ten times a day, is forgiven by Allah, and Allah saves him from seventy diseases, such as leprosy, black leprosy, and paralysis.” The Prophet (S) is also narrated to have said: “One who recites “بسم الله”, Allah will record four thousand virtues for him for each letter, and forgive four thousand sins of him.”

It is narrated that one who recites “بسم الله” before eating, Satan will not become his mate in eating; but if he begins eating and forgets reciting it, Satan becomes his mate.”(1)

Commentary of: “Allahumma Inni Asaluka bi rahmatika allati wa si’at kulla shay”

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اَللَّهُمَّ إنّی أسْألُکَ بِرَحْمَتِکَ الَّتی وَسِعَتْ کُلَّ شَیءٍ

O Allah! I ask you by your Mercy that envelops everything,

Each of the words in this phrase has secret inferences, which are presented here.

“اللهم”: is derived from “یا الله” (O Allah); “یا” (O) is omitted and instead, “میم” is added at the end. This shows that as the Almighty Allah preceded everything in existence,

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1- See “Al-Kafi”, “Ma’ani Al-Akhbar”, “Tawhid Saduq”, “Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah”, “Bahr l-Haqa’iq”, “Mafatih Al-Ghayb” and “Exegesis of Fatihat Al-Kitab”.

His holy name should precede everything else as well. The supplicant who calls Allah should know that if He had not inclined and permitted, the servant would not be able to utter a single word to praise and ask Allah. The supplicant’s tongue can call Allah only by His strength and Mercy. In fact, as du’a’ itself is the teaching of Allah, the servant’s utterance of supplication and the acceptance of it are only by Allah’s will too.

“انی اسالک” (I ask you): “انی” means “I”, but it does not mean egoism here. As a matter of fact, “I” in this phrase and throughout the holy du’a’, implies not an independent being, but rather a servant in need. The supplicant in this state sees himself as a deprived servant who calls Allah with humility, and perceives Allah as the source of Mercy, Justice, and Forgiveness. That’s why the supplicant asks his demand humbly from the All-Compassionate God.

“برحمتک التی وسعت کل شیئ” (by your Mercy that envelops everything): Allah’s mercy envelops everything, and surrounds the apparent and hidden facets of beings. This embracing Mercy is Allah’s general blessing, by which He brought all the creatures into existence, placed them in their appropriate positions and depending on the creatures’ capacity and faculty, provided them generously together with the necessary means to material growth and spiritual development.

In the valuable book, Anis Allayl, we read the following:

“Allah’s general Mercy is like the sun; it rises from east, and shines to everything within its beam, not

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depriving anything from its light, out of stinginess. All the creatures within the sunbeam benefit from the sun to the extent of their capability.”

In the same way, all the visible and hidden beings from the largest to the smallest enjoy Allah’s common blessings. Even the smallest creatures, which are only discernible through the most developed microscopes, are included in Allah’s realm, and each benefits from His Mercy to the greatest extent possible in order to grow and reach material and spiritual perfection. From the heavens to the earth, from east to west, and from the unseen to the visible, all beings benefit from Allah who is the Creator and the Provider. They are not detached from this source of Divine Mercy even for a moment, since if this happens, they will not exist anymore.

The creation of existing beings and the provision of sustenance to them, the growing of plants, the development of objects, the revelation of signs and miracles, the appointment of prophets, the guidance of the misled, the living of creatures, the descent of the angels, the restoration of the dead, the recompense to the believers, the chastisement of the wrongdoers, the establishment of the Day of Resurrection, the heaven and the Hell, the forgiveness of believers’ sins, and every goodness present in the world, are all instances of Allah’s embracing Mercy. Allah’s Magnanimous Mercy is not perceptible by our limited knowledge and partial understanding.

Counting “کل شیء”, all the living and inanimate beings who are within the realm of

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Allah’s blessings is not possible. Even if all the angels, jinns and humans become authors, using all the trees on the earth as pens and all the seas as ink, they cannot count but a few of Allah’s creatures.

To get a small amount of God’s blessings toward His creatures, it is necessary to study a few cases of these beings, so that we can absorb some rays of Allah’s knowledge.

The Living World

Measuring the world with regard to its length, width, capacity, and the number of beings existing inside it is totally impractical. Yet a corner of this excellent creation of God, namely the planet on which human beings reside and benefit from the blessings of its sky and earth, is discernible via our senses and experiences.

Everything in this world, from microscopic germs and viruses less than a thousandth of millimeters away from each other to the galaxies and stars at the distance of millions of kilometers, are made of atoms. Atoms are so minute that they are not visible except by extremely powerful microscopes. There are 55 million atoms at the point of a needle. If we magnify the point of the needle as a gigantic building, each atom will seem like a fly creeping on one of the pillars.

By God’s Mercy, atom is consists of three basic particles, i.e. electron, proton, and neutron, which have negative, positive, and neutral electric charges respectively. Protons and neutrons form the core of the atom together, around which the electrons revolve along an axis, just

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as the moon revolve around the earth’s orbit.(1) Countless atoms are the building blocks of this world. No one knows how the material and building blocks of the world was formed, and how they were created, but the Almighty God:

مَا أَشْهَدْتُهُمْ خَلْقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَلا خَلْقَ أَنفُسِهِمْ.

I made them not witness the creation of the heavens and the earth, not their own creation. (18:51)

What is stated in the Holy Qur’an and most great scientists have proven after lengthy studies is that: the building blocks for creation of the world were gas and smoke particles wandering in the space, which were so scattered that they hardly ever crossed each other.

ثُمَّ اسْتَوَی إِلَی السَّمَاءِ وَهِیَ دُخَانٌ.

Then turned He to the heaven when it was smoke (41:11)

Then Allah created the stars, decorating the lowest heaven which is the nearest one to us, by combining millions of gas particles into huge clouds; the cloud masses absorbed the particles toward the center to form bigger clouds while the particles collided with each other to produce heat. When the heat increased, a lightening occurred at the center of the cloud, illuminating the dark space. Finally millions of cloud masses formed the stars and from then on light appeared in the world and our sky was embellished with stars.

A shapeless cloud was spread throughout the massive space. Particles of different substances crashed and combined; the cloud revolved around like a turbulent ocean, full of invisible huge waves. Within this turbulent ocean, the movement of materials formed a

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1- Ofoq-e Danesh: 11.

spiral diagram, which was extended at the center with two developing arms. The solar system is located in one of the arms of the spiral diagram, called the Milky Way.

By God’s Will and Mercy, the sun and the solar system were created; there happened a chaotic storm in one of the arms and the motion of gasses moved the clouds too, to form a giant gig with illuminating particles around it. The giant gig moved on and absorbed the gasses toward the center, until an enormous shining ball was created in the form of the sun:

وَجَعَلَ الْقَمَرَ فِیهِنَّ نُورًا وَجَعَلَ الشَّمْسَ سِرَاجًا.

And hath made the moon a light therein, and made the sun a lamp. (71:16)

Then the gas particles, which had previously surrounded the sun, scattered and formed several masses, which turned around the sun on separate orbits; some near the sun while some far from it. The masses near the sun were hot, while those that were distant remained cold.

In each mass of gas and dust, the particles moved constantly; some gas particles produced steam, which changed to liquid whose humidity joined the dust particles together to form iced mud. Millions of these particles were moving inside the masses. Gravity pulled the particles together to form large balls, which further absorbed the particles and got bigger. One of these balls emerged as the earth, by Allah’s Will. Then other planets were created at the heart of masses of gas, each rotating around the sun in a certain orbit.

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The nearest planet to the sun was Mercury, and after that there were Venus, Earth and Mars. Beyond Mars, the giant planets Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune too revolved around the sun, and at the most distant, there was the planet Pluto.(1)

Just as the miniaturization of atoms is beyond human understanding, so is the vastness of the world. Light has an incredible rapid speed of 300 thousand kilometers per second; however, the light of the nearest star reaches the earth only after four years.

The telescope at the Palumar Mountain, California, has a five-meter-diameter mirror, and it can trace some stars in the space whose light reaches the earth after a thousand million years! The stars that are now perceptible via the modern telescopes are so numerous in number that if we count them for 100 years, counting one star in each second, uncounted stars will still remain!(2) A galaxy is a gigantic core, which is wider at the center, including at least a thousand million stars. Its length is a hundred thousand light years and its width at the center is about twenty thousand light years. As today’s human telescopes can observe, there are probably a hundred and fifty million galaxies in the world, and the average distance between two neighboring galaxies is two million light years.(3)

This great system is only a corner of the living world, which is observed by man’s limited knowledge. Only Allah is aware of the whole world that is beyond the reach of human being.

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1- Gozashte va ayande-ye jahan : 20-27.
2- Ofoq-e Danesh: 118.
3- Ofoq-e Danesh: 118.

As Imam ‘Ali (as) has insightfully stated: “Creation is within Allah’s Mercy; the Mercy that established and developed the world.”

Human; the Noblest Inhabitant of the World

Having created the world and providing the necessary equipment and sustenance, the Omnipotent willed to create a notable being, composed of body, soul, mind, heart and temper, out of His Mercy. He placed man as His vicegerent on earth, to grow and gain strength by the blessings He has supplied; to live in accord with the guidance of prophets and their books, and to worship the Creator and serve His fellow creatures. The man then is transferred to the Hereafter by death, and is granted his recompense in the eternal paradise, remaining in Allah’s Mercy forever. Here we review the signs of Allah’s Mercy embracing human apparent and interior sides.

Different Stages in the Creation of Man

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The holy Qur’an has considered the creation of human fetus as happening in stages:

وَقَدْ خَلَقَکُمْ أَطْوَارًا.

When He created you by (diverse) stages? (71:14)

The first Stage: Soil

وَلَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الإِنسَانَ مِنْ سُلالَهٍ مِنْ طِینٍ.

We created man of an extraction of clay. (23:12)

The human embryo is a product of various foods, coming from animals and plants. The plants feed the animals and are fed by the soil. As a result, human embryo is made from the earth. The latest scientific findings show that the chemical elements found in earth, such as iron, copper, calcium, iodine, etc. exist in human body. Humans constantly obtain the extracts of chemicals present in the earth by feeding from animals and plants, and then reproducing.

The Second Stage: Water

وَهُوَ الَّذِی خَلَقَ مِنْ الْمَاءِ بَشَرًا.

And He it is

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Who created man from water… (25:54)

To biologists, human body resembles a sponge soaked in water. The body of a seventy-kilogram person is composed of fifty liters of water, and this ratio is fixed for all people. If a person loses twenty percent of his body water, he will not recuperate again.

The water inside human cells includes a large amount of potassium, and completely lacks salt. The water outside the cells, on the other hand, has considerable salt. The composition of water outside the cells is exactly the same as that of the water wherein the first living beings resided millions of years ago. Later on, when the water beings came to the land, they practically carried the water they lived in, since they could not continue life without it. This is the miracle of Qur’an which fourteen decades ago, in an illiterate desert society without scientific tools, stated:” It is He who created man from water.”

The Third Stage: Alaq

خَلَقَ الإِنسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ.

He Createth man from a clot. (96:2)

“Alaq” lexically means a worm or leech that sticks to the womb. Spermatozoids are now observable by microscope and are seen as a plethora of floating leeches, which stick to the womb.

The amount of spermatozoid is about four cubic centimeters, in each centimeter of which there are one hundred to two hundred million leech-like beings. They move toward Ovule, the female cell, together.

The ovary of a young woman contains about three million unripe ovums, four hundred of which get ripe. During menstruation, the bag containing

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the ovums is cracked, and the ovums go through a pipe that connects the ovary to the womb. The movement of the pipe’s trembling lashes facilitates the transfer of the ovums to the womb.

The fourth Stage: Creation from a Despised Fluid

ثُمَّ جَعَلَ نَسْلَهُ مِنْ سُلَالَهٍ مِنْ مَاءٍ مَهِینٍ.

Then He made his progeny from a draught of despised fluid. (32:8)

When the leech-like sperms floating in the male semen reach the womb they suddenly start a strange competition. The two hundred million sperms engaging in this competition rush toward the ovum and they soon surround it. Seen under microscope, the sperms whose tails move resemble a meadow that surfs due to the breeze.

Each sperm tries to be the first to enter the ovum. As soon as one of them succeeds in doing so, its tail is cut and the entrance becomes inflamed. The ovum’s protoplasm gets contracted and emits a liquid to keep other sperms away from entering it. Consequently, from among two hundred million male sperms, only one mingles with the female ovum and thus a human is created. Sometimes, by Allah’s will, two or more sperms enter the ovum and then a twin fetus is produced in the female womb.

The Fifth Stage: Amshaj (the Zygote)

إِنَّا خَلَقْنَا الإِنسَانَ مِنْ نُطْفَهٍ أَمْشَاجٍ.

Verily We created Man from a drop of mingled sperm… (76:2)

To create a human being, an ovum (a white seed) should catch a sperm, which is two hundred and fifty times smaller than the ovum. Then the chromosomes of the sperm, which have been divided by half, mingle with the chromosomes of

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the ovum and generate a new being; the zygote, which Qur’an calls amshaj (mingled).

The ovum and the sperm cannot continue life even in the best of conditions and they soon die, however only after mingling together and producing the zygote. After this process, the zygote begins dividing; first it is divided into two, then becomes four, eight, etc. and finally makes a cell mass.

The Sixth Stage: the Shaping of the Fetus

هُوَ اللَّهُ الْخَالِقُ الْبَارِئُ الْمُصَوِّرُ لَهُ الأَسْمَاءُ الْحُسْنَی.

He is Allah the Creator the Evolver the Bestower of Forms. To Him belong the Most Beautiful Names. (59:24)

After the creation of cells is complete, which are the building blocks for the fetus, a large mass of cells is placed in the womb to start evolving the fetus.

First, under the light of Allah’s Mercy, these countless cells separate from each other to shape various organs; the cells of brain, eye, ear, etc. chase their fellow-cells to develop the different parts of the body and this way the body of the fetus is designed by these cells.

The small ball on the left of the fetus is its food source. This ball, floating in blood, obtains the extract of food, water, and oxygen from blood, provided by the digestion and respiratory systems, and transfers them to the fetus through the navel. This is Allah’s Mercy that embraces everything and the signs of it are brighter than sun in every molecule of His creation.

The Seventh Stage: Placing the fetus in Three Veils

یَخْلُقُکُمْ فِی بُطُونِ أُمَّهَاتِکُمْ خَلْقًا مِنْ بَعْدِ خَلْقٍ فِی ظُلُمَاتٍ ثَلاثٍ.

…He makes you in the wombs of your mothers in

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stages one after another in three veils of darkness… (39:6)

Three veils gradually embrace the fetus; the amnion veil, the chorion veil, and the allantoids veil. The amnion is a veil generated by the growing of fetus’s outer surface. It expands until it makes a space called the amnion cavity behind the fetus in which there is a pure fluid.

The Chorion veil is out of the amnion veil and helps protect the fetus.

The allantoids veil is before the fetus’s belly and is responsible for digestion and absorption of food. These three veils save the fetus from the air, light, water, wind, and possible strikes. In the space between the amnion veil and the fetus, there is a fluid. When a strike is made to the womb, the impact is transferred to this liquid which neutralizes it. This is Allah’s Mercy toward the human fetus.

The Eighth Stage: Breathing Spirit

ثُمَّ أَنشَأْنَاهُ خَلْقًا آخَرَ.

… and then produced it another creation. So blessed be Allah, the Best of Creators! (23:14)

Having accomplished the shaping of the fetus, which is the sign of Allah’s Power, Allah breathes spirit into the fetus that is not only a sophisticated process in itself but many facts about it are still unknown. He miraculously transform the fetus by breathing His spirit into it, and making it alive. This is the stage when the fetus learns to put its finger inside the mouth. That’s why the newly born can feed from his/her mother’s breast immediately after birth.

The Ninth Stage: Birth

وَاللَّهُ أَخْرَجَکُمْ مِنْ بُطُونِ أُمَّهَاتِکُمْ.

It is He who brought you

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forth from the wombs of your mothers… (16:78)

The story of childbirth is one of the most fascinating processes occurring in the creation system. The fetus that have lived in the dark, quiet and pleasantly warm womb for nine months, now, by Allah’s Mercy, enters an atmosphere quite different from the previous one. Allah has granted it all capabilities to cope with the new environment. The child leaves the mother womb with a temperature of 37 degrees centigrade and enters another milieu with more or less a similar temperature, but it copes with the new setting.

This survival is still a mystery in medicine. The child goes from darkness to the light and its delicate eyes tolerate the dazzling light of the outside world. It comes from a wet place to a dry one, but it immediately copes with the new situation. As a fetus, it was fed through the navel, and now it eats through the mouth and breathes the air with no mediator!(1)

These are all signs of Allah’s unlimited Mercy and human beings should hence be grateful of His blessings wholeheartedly and call out:

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّی أَسْألُکَ بِرَحْمَتِکَ الَّتِی وَسِعَتْ کُلَّ شَیٍْء

A Manifestation of Allah’s Mercy

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It is necessary to have a look at another sign of Allah’s infinite Mercy toward human being here, so that it removes our thoughtlessness, increasing our eagerness to worship and our hatred of sins.

Scientifically, the system of the human brain is the most remarkable machine and performs duties that the most developed human-made machines are unable to complete. One

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1- Gozashte va ayande ye jahan : 51-70

of the duties of the brain is to record various events in the memory. Human memory is related only to a small part of the brain. For showing the capacity of the memory, an example has been repeatedly given:

Suppose a fifty-year old man wants to write all his memories collectively. For this he will need 160 million large size newspapers that are printed in small fonts in twenty pages each. In various respects, the mechanism of remembering the memories resembles that of the tapes of voice recorders. The difference is that the power of brain tapes is provided by body nerves and they do not need rotate.

If we want to build a machine that performs the work of a human brain, we should make an apparatus two times larger than the largest buildings in the world and allot all the electricity made by the water of world’s largest fall for its power. Since, the electric lamps and wires make the machine hot, all the water of the supposed fall should instead turn around the machine. The invented machine, in spite of all that, still not perform all the thinking obligations of an ordinary human brain.

The command of sucking milk from the mother’s breast is issued from the child’s brain and sent to its lips, and the child feeds from its mother’s breast calmly, without any errors. In the mother’s body, there is an automatic chemical factory that turns her blood into suitable and delicious food, appropriate for the infant’s digestive

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system. When the fetus is created in the mother’s womb, the suckling factory recuperates in the mother’s body and begins to work. As the fetus grows, this factory gets more active until it produces suitable milk for the baby at the birth. After the birth, as the child grows up, and its digestive system becomes stronger, the produced milk changes accordingly.

The highly nutritious product of this factory is assembled in two sources of the mother’s breast and seeps out of the nipples by the baby’s sucking and becomes part of its body. The size of the nipples is appropriate for the baby’s mouth, which is inclusive of tiny openings that open with the baby’s sucking and are automatically closed afterwards, in order to avoid the wastage the milk.

All these interesting events and alterations for the sake of humans are nothing but Allah’s infinite Mercy and unlimited blessing. Human beings should ponder in these phenomena, praise the Almighty, and beg Him for spiritual blessings.

The Respiratory System

Human lungs inhale and exhale the air approximately 500 million times, during a typical lifetime. In the respiratory system, there are hundreds of thousands of glands that filter out a sticky liquid in order to absorb the harmful dust particles entering the lungs when breathing. If this liquid did not exist, the particles would obstruct the respiratory pipes in a few seconds, causing death.

Also there are tiny hair in these pipes that constantly clean them. These hair clean all the pipes twelve times per second, and send the

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harmful particles into the digestive system in which they become ineffectual.

The respiratory pipes transfer the air to 750 million bags inside the lungs in which the carbon dioxide is taken from the blood and oxygen is replaced instead. The respiratory system, in spite of being small in size has an important duty and an amazing process which is but one part of “کل شیء” (everything) that are embraced by Allah’s Mercy.

The Skin

Human skin has various benefits, some of which are represented here:

There are very tiny holes all over the skin through which some part of human breathing takes place. If these holes were to be closed human beings could not continue life.

The skin contains glands that produce sweat which filters it out to maintain the normal body temperature.

The skin includes some oily glands that keep it and the hairs constantly soft and fresh.

The skin defends the body against the intrusive microbes.

It wards off parts of body poisons and filth through sweat and hence helps the kidneys in their duty.

It prevents the useful body liquids from leaking out.

The skin is the organ for the sense of touch which helps us feel cold, heat, softness, harshness, thinness, and thickness of objects.

The skin is another blessing that is embraced by Allah’s Mercy, and hence so many useful processes are carried out inside it.

The Defensive System of the Body

When the Omnipotent Allah created the human body, He granted it five protective walls against microbes and the diseases, which are:

The skin that has covered all the body like a fort;

The ganglion

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tissues that are cotton–like milky tissues under the skin which sometimes change color; they are thick in some areas while thin in others. If something harmful penetrates through the skin, it faces the resistance of the ganglion tissues.

The mucus membranes, which are membranes surrounding some body organs in order to protect them and are of the same color as the organs. Some of the organs like the heart have two membranes; one that surrounds the outer part of the heart called the ‘outer mucus’ and another that is inside the heart or the ‘inner mucus’.

The stomach acid that eliminate anything harmful which has passed other protective walls of the body.

The white globules are ball-shaped beings in the blood that fight the microbes that have entered the blood and eradicates them. Interestingly, these white balls cooperate with the useful microbes that enter the body.

Isn’t it Allah’s Mercy granted to all these guards that protects human being from the diseases and viruses? How extended is Allah’s Mercy that have enfolded the appearance and inner realm of human body and every fragment of his being!

The Remarkable Uses of the Plants

No one knows the exact number of different plants, their processes, the vitamins and the role they play in human life except Allah who is the Creator of them. Since the plants are part of “کل شیء” (everything) to which Allah’s Mercy is granted, a brief account of their duty in the life of other creatures is described.

There is a certain amount of oxygen in the air, which is

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a vital gas for the existence of every living being. In fact no human, animal and plant can continue life without it.

The oxygen entering human lungs by breathing is combined with the blood and is distributed throughout the body through the blood circulation. Oxygen burns the food in all the cells very slowly and produces natural body heat. By burning the food, a poisonous gas called carbon dioxide is produced, which goes to the lungs with the blood and enters the air through exhalation. All the living things take the oxygen from the atmosphere and send out carbon dioxide.

Each person usually exhales out 250 grams of pure carbon by his/her exhales during 24 hours. If we assume the population of humans to be three billion, they produce approximately two hundred and seventy three million and seven hundred and fifty thousand (273.750.000) tons of poisonous carbon dioxide a year. About the same amount of this gas is produced by the animals too. A question arises here and that is:

Where does this constantly produced toxic gas go? If it exists in the air and the amount of oxygen is decreasing, the oxygen-carbon dioxide balance should be changed. Why is it then that all humans and animals keep on living?

The answer to this question is provided by Allah’s Mercy; He has created a class of beings whose number is infinite and their breathing is completely against that of other living things. They take the carbon dioxide from the air and give out

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oxygen, when breathing and hence maintain the balance between these two gases. These invaluable entities are plants.

The plants receive the carbon from the air by their leaves, retaining it in their stem, and give out oxygen to the air. Therefore a major substance in plants is carbon.

Based on the Qur’anic verses and the statement of Imam ‘Ali (as) in du’a’ Kumayl, Allah’s Mercy has surrounded every leaf and keeps the living world away from total washout. The signs of His Mercy are seen in the stem, leaf, blossoms, and flowers of the plant. Those who cannot see are unwise and those who do not ponder are ignorant.

Human beings using God-given intellect, benefit from various kinds of vegetables, fruits and seeds for preserving health, satisfying hunger and enjoying life and by Allah’s Mercy, this collection of foods are necessary for the different elements of the body, such as colors, bones, skin, nerves, vessels, blood, hair, nail, energy, heat….

The Role of Animals and Insects in the Living World

No one knows the number of insects and animals that exists on land and in sea or the birds and reptiles and the benefits of their existence, but their Creator knows everything who’s Mercy has covered the appearance and hidden aspects of them. His mercy has brought about great uses from them. Human being, in this regard, benefits from all these creatures.

Fertilizing Insects: Fruit trees have both male organs (pollen) and female organs (pistil). If the pollen of a tree does not reach the pistil of the same kind of tree, or vice versa,

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no fruit will be produced. For fertilizing some plants, Allah has made tiny insects whose duty is to carry the pollen of a plant to the pistil of another and take the pollen of the second to the pistil of the first. Interestingly, these small agents do not make errors - taking the pollen of apple tree to the pistil of the peach tree is completely out of the question - rather they pollinate to the same trees. Even more fascinating is that the trees pay the insects off with the sugar inherent in them. The insects receive the sugar and help make the fruit for humans, but humans are yet ungrateful.

Cows and Sheep: Scientists of nature believe that everything in nature exists as per the requirements of its creatures, and they are right. In case of the mammals, there is enough milk in the female animal’s breast for its child. But Allah’s Mercy has set the cows and sheep as exceptions to this general rule, since their milk is not only food for their young ones, but also has a surplus for the humans.

The milk of cow and sheep is a valuable food for the infants, children and even growing or grown-up humans. The products of milk provide one of the most important needs of human body.(1)

Is Allah’s Blessings toward humans not evident? The Almighty, out of Mercy, has presented these animals at the service of humans. The benefits of such animals are great and their probable harms

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1- Neshane ha-ie az ‘ou : 1/174.

are very little. Humans use every organ and product of the sheep in a way. The interesting point is that the food consumed by all three types of sheep, which are raised separately for their wool, meat, and milk, is the same. This is the Power of Allah, Who transforms one kind of food in the body of an animal into three different products for the sake of humans, and hence provides food and clothes for them, yet some of whom are ever ungrateful. The sheep is only a minute part of “کل شیئ” (every thing), which are developed by Allah’s Mercy. Numerous books are required to fully describe all the blessings that Allah has bestowed on this animal.

Honeybee: Botanists say that most of the flowers do not have sap throughout the day, but rather at certain times of the day and this period does not exceed more than three hours. Moreover, not all the flowers offer their sap at a fixed time time; some have sap in the morning, some at noon and while others in the afternoon. The honeybee is both a botanist as well as punctual. It knows the flowers and the time of availability of sap in each flower and thus, approaches each at its designated times.(1) The honey bee then changes the flower sap into a substance that is not only sweat and pleasant, but also colorful and energizing. The honey produced inside the bee’s body is a unique food of this world that resists

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1- Neshane ha-ie az ‘ou : 2/92.

putridity. And above all, as stated in the holy Qur’an, it is a cure to human diseases:

“Wherein is healing for mankind. (16:69)”

Hundreds of books have been written about the bee and its life, which shows Allah’s embracing Mercy toward this apparently small, but valuable creature.

Allah’s Guidance; a Valuable Blessing

The Omnipotent Allah has willed to place human being in a corner of the world for a limited time, out of Mercy, allowing him to benefit from all the blessings that are prepared through the processes of the ethereal elements like the clouds and the winds, the sun and the moon. He has bestowed on humans a myriad of fruits, vegetables, and seeds, together with halal (pure) meat obtained from different creatures from the territory of the skies, the earth and the seas.

Allah has granted the necessary equipment to humans for establishing their life. Human beings should rely on their minds and free will to choose the path of religion and guidance which is a unique blessing, for the right path is so clearly defined by the Heavenly Books, especially the Qur’an, the holy Prophets (as), and Imams (as). By doing so, man recognizes his duty and responsibility towards his Creator and rightfully tries to fulfill these duties, so that he may reach perfection. Human beings should attempt to work for the Hereafter during the limited period of time that they have in this world and strive for attaining Allah’s satisfaction and His paradise.

If man contemplates on all the material as well as

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spiritual blessings granted by the Almighty, he discovers that His general Mercy has surrounded both the apparent and the hidden sides of the heavens and the earth. Man himself is cloaked to such an extent in Allah’s Mercy and His Beneficence that no other creature, even the nearest angel, is like him.

At this point, human beings should insightfully begin their spiritual journey to serve Allah and reach His countenance, not disregarding to serve Allah and His servants. They should humbly pray and worship Allah, with all their organs, at every point in time and beseech Him.

By choosing the right path that is Allah’s manifested guidance together with fulfilling the duties and serving His servants, humans, as asserted by the Holy Qur’an, will be granted great reward and Allah’s paradise.

Allah’s Mercy

If man commits a sin due to ignorance or negligence during his lifetime, but regrets and returns to Allah by beseeching him for repentance and compensation, Allah will forgive him. It is recommended that repentance should be accompanied by du’a’ Kumayl on Thursday night; the night of Mercy and the descent of Allah’s Blessings to the servants.

قُلْ یَا عِبَادِی الَّذِینَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَی أَنْفُسِهِمْ لا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَهِ اللَّهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ یَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِیعًا إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِیمُ.

Say: O my people who have been prodigal against yourselves, do not despair of God’s mercy; surely God forgives sins altogether; surely He is the All-forgiving, the All-compassionate. (39:53)

There are so many verses in the holy Qur’an that end with the phrases such as:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ

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رَحِیمٌ.

Allah is All-forgiving, All-compassionate. (2:173)

وَاللَّهُ رَءُوفٌ بِالْعِبَادِ.

Allah is gentle with His servants. (2:207)

وَاللَّهُ یَدْعُو إِلَی الْجَنَّهِ وَالْمَغْفِرَهِ.

Allah invites into the Garden, and forgiveness by His grace. (2:221)

أَنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ حَلِیمٌ.

And know that Allah is All-forgiving, All-clement. (2:253)

وَاللَّهُ یَخْتَصُّ بِرَحْمَتِهِ مَنْ یَشَاءُ.

But Allah singles out for His Mercy whom He will. (2:105)

وَاللَّهُ ذُو الْفَضْلِ الْعَظِیمِ.

And Allah is of infinite bounty. (2:105)

إِنَّ اللَّهَ کَانَ عَفُوًّا غَفُورًا.

Allah is All-pardoning, All-forgiving. (4:43)

إِنَّ اللَّهَ کَانَ تَوَّابًا رَحِیمًا.

Allah is Relenting, Merciful. (4:16)

وَهُوَ أَرْحَمُ الرَّاحِمِینَ.

And He is the Most Merciful of those who show mercy. (12:64)

إِنَّ رَبَّکَ وَاسِعُ الْمَغْفِرَهِ.

Surely your Lord is liberal in forgiving (53:32).

Traditions about Allah’s Mercy

Abu Sa’id Khadri has narrated from the holy Prophet (S):

When the sinful believers are sent to the Hell, the fire becomes cold for them until they are brought out. Then Allah calls on the angels: Bring them to the Paradise, because they are subjected to My infinite Mercy and Compassion.

It is narrated from the Prophet’s Household:

When the Day of Resurrection is established, the Almighty gathers the believers together and tells them: ‘I forgive your sins as they make you indebted to Me, pardon each others’ sins so that you can enter paradise.’

It is also narrated that on the Day of Resurrection, Allah calls on each of His servant: O My servant! I granted you blessings, but you committed sins. As I increased My blessings for you, you added your transgression. The servant bends his head from shyness. Allah calls: O My servant! Raise your head, since I forgave you at the same

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moment that you committed the sin.

Another tradition reads:

When a servant is brought before Allah on the Hereafter, she/he bends head and bursts into tear due to shame. The Almighty calls: When you committed sin cheerfully I did not make you ashamed. Now that you are not sinning and are bitterly ashamed, how can I punish you? I forgive your wrongdoing and allow you to enter My paradise.

It is narrated from the Messenger of Allah (S) who said:

Allah has a hundred kinds of Mercy, one of which He grants in this world, covering His servants with it, and He reserves the other ninety nine for the Day of Resurrection with which to endow His servants.(1)

The great narrator, Shaikh Saduq, has narrated from an infallible Imam:

When the Day of Resurrection is established, Allah’s Mercy is manifested and the wrongdoers are forgiven in crowds to such an extent that the outcast Satan becomes envious!

An important tradition states that when a believer servant is placed in grave, the grave is covered while friends and acquaintances return, leaving him alone the All-Compassionate Allah calls him, out of Mercy: O My servant! You are left alone in the darkness and those for whose pleasure you committed the sin and whose satisfaction you preferred over mine, have gone away. Now I grant My Mercy to you such that people are surprised. Then He calls on the angels: O My angels! My servant is lonely, alienated, and forlorn and is My guest. Go help him and open an

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/384, Bab fi sa’ati rahmati Allah.

entrance to paradise for him! Bring him all kinds of flowers and foods! Then leave him alone, because I will be his companion until the Day of Resurrection!(1)

Stories of Allah’s Mercy

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It is narrated that on the Day of Resurrection, the servant is called to account and his letter of deeds, full of sins, is given to his left hand. When getting the letter, the servant states “bismillahi (In the Name of Allah)”, out of habit, seeking Mercy of Allah. Once he opens it, he finds the letter of his deeds blank and exclaims with astonishment: “There is nothing to read.” The angels say: “There were your sins written in this letter, which were erased due to the verse you recited, and Allah forgave all your sins.”(2)

Jesus Christ and the sinner

In a tradition we read that one day Prophet Jesus (as) went along a road with his apostles, when a notorious sinner known for his immorality and wickedness saw them. He began to sincerely regret his previous sins, saw himself damned, and burst into tears, seeking Allah’s forgiveness. Then he thought with himself: “I have not done a good deed in all my life so I do not deserve to accompany the apostles.

But since they are Allah’s friends I should follow them.” So he pursued them and called them. One of the apostles turned and looked at the man who was renowned for impiety and said: “O Jesus! How can this evildoer follow us? Which religion allows him to accompanying us? Send him away and ask him

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1- Traditions on Allah’s Mercy are explicitly narrated in Bihar al-Anwar: 7/ 286, Bab 14 ma yazharu min rahmatihi ta’ala fil qiama, Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/383, Bab fi sa’ati rahmati Allah, the exegesis of fatihat Al-Kitab and Quran exegesis.
2- The exegesis of Fatihat Al-Kitab: 74.

not to follow us, as his sins may make our lives inauspicious!”

Jesus (as) was beginning to think how he could expel that man when the Almighty revealed to him: “O Jesus! Tell your proud apostle to resume his deeds, because We removed all his good deeds for the contemptuous look that he had on the remorseful sinner. And give good tidings to Our sinner servant that We forgave his sins and redirected him to guidance due to his repentance from past deeds.”(1)

The Sinful Youth

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Mulla Fat’h Allah al-Kashani in the exegesis “Minhaj al-Sadiqin”, and Ayatollah Kalbasi in the book “Anis al-Layl” have narrated: “In the time of Maliki Dinar, a sinner youth died. Because of his being a transgressor, people did not shroud or bury his body. While sleeping, Maliki Dinar dreamed of Allah telling him: “Go and bury the body of Our servant in the cemetery of the pious believers, after washing and shrouding it.” Malik answered: “O Allah! He was among the impious people. How could he become so near to You?” He was answered: “When dying, that sinner wept and said:

یَا مَنْ لَهُ الدُّنْیا وَالآخِرَهُ ارْحَمْ مَن لَیسَ لَهُ الدُّنْیَا وَالآخِرَهُ!

‘O the Master of this world and the Hereafter! Pity the one who has nothing in the world nor in the Hereafter!’

O Malik! Which suffering servant has come to Us and we did not cure him? And which deprived servant has come to Us and We did not grant him his wish?”(2)

Granted Wish

In the time of Mansur Ibn ‘Ammar, who

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1- The exegesis of Fatihat al-Kitab: 63.
2- Anis al-Layl: 45.

was among the Gnostics, a rich man decided to organize a sinful ceremony. So, giving his servant four drachmas, he sent him to the market to buy food for serving the guests.

When going to the market, the servant passed by the assembly of Mansur Ibn ‘Ammar and said to himself: “I’d better stand here and listen to what Mansur Ibn ‘Ammar says.” He heard Mansur asking help for a poor from the assembly, saying: “Who will give me four drachmas so that I will ask four things for him from Allah?”

The servant of the rich man thought to himself: “It is better to give the money to Mansur and benefit from his prayer, rather than buying food and drinks for the sinners with this money.” So the servant gave the money to Mansur and said: “Ask four things for me from Allah!” Mansur said: “What would you like me to ask for you from Allah?” The servant replied: “First, ask Allah to free me from the slavery of my master! Second, ask Allah to help my master regretful! Third, that He return this four drachmas to me in some way! Fourth, that the Almighty forgive my sins and that of him, his servants and his guests altogether!”

Mansur prayed for the servant and he returned to his master without buying anything. The rich man asked his servant: “Where were you?” “O master! I gave four drachmas and bought four prayers.” The servant replied. The rich man asked about the four prayers.

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The servant said in reply: “First, that Allah make me free from slavery.” The master said: “I make you free in Allah’s path.” “Second, that you repent.” “I do repent,” the master replied. “Third, that Allah return me the four drachmas”

The rich man gave him another four drachmas. “And fourth,” said the servant “that the Almighty forgive you, me and all your guests.” The master answered: “I did what I could. But this last one is beyond my ability.” At night, the master dreamed of Allah revealing to him: “O servant! You did your duty, out of mercy, though you are very poor indeed. It is beyond Our Infinite Mercy that We do not do Our duty. Thus, We forgave you, your servant, and all those present in your gathering.”

Meeting the Generous Allah

A wise man crossed a road where he saw a group of people expelling a young man from town, because of his corruption. A woman, who was weeping uncontrollably, followed them. The wise man asked about the woman and found that she was the young man’s mother. The wise man pitied the mother and mediated for him before the group, saying: “Forgive the young man this one time, and if he resorts to corruption again, you should then expel him from town.”

Later, the wise man returned to the same neighborhood and heard a voice crying behind a door. He thought that the young man has been expelled from the town, due to his corruption and his mother was crying in

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his absence. He knocked at the door and the young man’s mother opened it. The wise man asked about the woman’s son.

The woman replied: “He has died, but his death was not an ordinary one. When death approached, he said: ‘Do not inform the neighbors of my death. I have annoyed them immensely and they have reproached me much. I don’t want them to be present on my body. Wash and shroud my body yourself and bury this ring with me. I have just bought it and “bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim” is written on it. Ask Allah to forgive me while you stand beside my grave.’ I did as he had willed and when I was returning from his grave, it was as if I heard him saying: ‘Go and relax mum! I met the Generous!’”(1)

Repentance After Repentance

The great Persian poet, Attar, narrates in his “Mantiq Al-Tiyr”: After committing sin after sin, a sinner decided to finally repent for his previous deeds. However, his carnal soul made him repeat his previous sins but he repented again. He violated his repentance once more and by then was so drenched in sins that he could experience the worldly punishment of his crimes.

Finally he found out that his life, which he had spent in corruption, was coming to an end. He wanted to repent, but he was too ashamed to do so. Like a wheat grain on the fire, he was burning in despair, until the dawn in which he heard a hidden caller saying: “O

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1- The exegesis Ruh Al-Bayan: 1/337.

sinner! The Compassionate says: ‘When you first repented I accepted it, but you broke your promise. I granted you respite to repent again and accepted it, while I could punish you. Still you committed sins and sank yourself in wrongdoing. If you want to repent now, do so and I will accept your repentance.’(1)

Prayer of a Lost is Answered

Attar narrates in “Mantiq al-Tayr”: One night, Gabriel was by Sidratul Muntaha(2), when he heard the Almighty saying labbayk(3), in reply to someone Gabriel did not know. He wanted to know who was the one who deserved to be answered by Allah, but found no one in all the heavens and the earth, although, he still heard Allah repeating his reply. He searched again but saw nobody of such rank before Allah.

He asked the Almighty: ‘O Allah! Direct me to your servant whom you have answers!’ He was answered: ‘Watch Rome!’ Gabriel looked and saw an idolater in a temple crying and calling an idol. Gabriel was astonished by this and said: ‘Uncover the truth for me! How comean idolater calls his idol and You answer him out of Mercy?’ Gabriel was replied: ‘My servant’s heart had become so hard that he had lost his way. But I am pleased with the way he worships, hence I reply to him so that he may find the right path.’ At the same moment, the idolater began to call the Unique Allah!(4)

Change from the Unlucky Book to the Lucky Book

The author of “exegesis of fatihat Al-Kitab”, which is one of the most important scientific and Gnostic

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1- Anis al-Layl: 45.
2- The farthest lote-tree a tree in the seventh heaven
3- Saying: “Here I am.”
4- Anis al-Layl: 46.

books written by a scholar after the age of al-Faydh al-Kashani, narrates that:

In the Israelites, there was a pious worshipper who had secluded himself from other people, and remained in his own solitude. He had worshipped Allah so devotedly day and night that all the angels has befriended him. Gabriel, too, who was the guardian of heavenly secrets, asked the Almighty to be allowed to descend in order to meet the pious man. He was ordered: ‘Look into the Lawhul Mahfuz(1) to see his position!’

Gabriel looked and found the pious man’s name amongst the unlucky. He was surprised at the unpredictability of fates, ceased the desire of meeting him, and said: ‘O Allah! No one can stand against your verdict and tolerate these peculiarities.’ He was called: ‘Since you have wished to see him for a while, now go and meet him and tell him what you saw.’

Gabriel descended into the pious man’s convent to find a slim and weak individual who was praying enthusiastically and wholeheartedly; sometimes standing in front of the altar while at other times humbly prostrating on the soil before Allah. Gabriel greeted him and said: ‘O pious man! Do not get yourself into trouble! Because your name is written among the unlucky.’

Hearing this, the pious smiled like a new flower that has blossomed with the morning breeze, and as a melodious nightingale on seeing the flower began reciting ‘Praise be to Allah.’

Gabriel said: ‘Poor man! How can you call ‘Praise be to Allah’ at this

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1- Divine memory tablet on which human destinies or deeds are recorded.

miserable story? You should be gloomy, rather than delighted!’

The old pious replied: ‘Do not speak this way, because I am the servant and He is my Master. A servant would not wish anything beyond his Master’s will. He has the power to do as He is inclined, and take me where he wills. Praise be to Allah that if I do not deserve going to paradise, I am needed as the wood for the hell!’

Gabriel returned to his own spot while seeing the state of this man who was so excited at his condition. Allah ordered him to look at the Divine Memory to see what the painter of “Allah blots out, and He establishes whatsoever He will…”(1) has drawn and what the creator of “And Allah does what He will…”(2) has painted. Gabriel looked and saw the pious man’s name among the lucky. He was astonished and said: ‘O Allah! What is the secret of this story? And what is the reason for shifting his name from the unlucky to the lucky?’

He was answered: ‘O the trustee of revealing secrets! When you informed the pious of his stance he did not groan, but he was patient and surrendered himself to My will and his destiny; he said ‘Praise be to Allah’, calling Me with all My praiseworthy names. So I was inclined to name him among the lucky instead of the unlucky, out of Mercy.’(3)

Commentary of: “Wa biquwwatika’llati qaharta biha kulla shay”

وَبِقُوَّتِکَ الَّتِی قَهَرْتَ بِهَا کُلَّ شَیٍْء

(And I ask You) by Your Strength, through

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1- “یمحو الله ما یشاء ویثبت” (13:39).
2- “ویفعل الله ما یشاء”(14:27).
3- The exegesis of fatihat Al-Kitab: 107.

which You dominate everything.

Allah’s Strength, just as His holy Existence, is infinite and other abilities and strengths are insignificant before His Strength. No strength is independent from His Strength, but is rather a ray of His Power: “لا حول و لا قوه الا بالله “: “There is no Power but Allah’s.” In the last section, the phrase “کل شیء” was briefly discussed and it was concluded that:

“کل شیء” includes all the creatures and beings, which have been created by Allah’s Mercy, and whose exact quality and quantity no one knows and will not know until the Day of Judgment. Who is aware of the exact number of the billions of heavenly galaxies, plants, animals, birds, beasts, reptiles of the earth and sea, and the countless amoebas, viruses, microbes, hidden beings and the angels?

The Compassionate Creator of the world, who has such unrelenting Power over “everything in the world”, dominates everything, and nothing is out of His embracing Strength.

Allah maintains the heavens and their kernels, the galaxies and the stars, the systems and their inhabitants-some of which weigh more than billions of tons-which have been floating in a certain orbit, with a definite speed for billions of years and keeps them from falling down.

Commentary of: “Wa khadha’a laha kulla shay..”

وَخَضَعَ لَهَا کُلُّ شَیٍْء وَذَلَّ لَها کُلُّ شَیْءٍ

(I ask You) by Your Strength, toward which everything is humble and before which all things are lowly.

Everything in this world, from the hidden to the visible beings, from the largest to the smallest creatures, from the most extensive

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galaxies, stars, and planets to the tiniest atoms that are not observable with scientific tools, are inferior before Allah. Everything is controlled by His rule and has surrendered to His wise authority, ready to be obedient to Him. All the creatures are unexceptionally submitted to Allah’s immeasurable Strength.

A phrase from a supplication stated by an infallible Imam’s conscious heart and mind reads: “Surely You are; You are the God to Whose Strength everything is capitulated and humble. You are able to do anything to Your creatures and dominate any of them. You are the One Who created all the things and have control over them. You are the Master of all things. There is no God except You. You are the Generous and the Mighty.”

Granting the exigency of a humble and weeping servant on a Thursday night is very easy for the One Who has dominated everything with His infinite Power, and to Whose Strength everything is submissive. And it is absolutely effortless for Him to manipulate His various agents in the heavens and the earth to grant His servant’s worldly and heavenly demands.

Is it possible that a heartbroken, who calls Allah by His Mercy and Strength and who knows nothing above Him, remain unfortunate? Never! It is not strange for worldly incapable beings to be incompetent in fulfilling others’ demands. However Allah’s All-Sufficient existence, and His infinite Mercy and Strength obliges the fulfillment of the supplications in accord with the servant’s expediency and His own Wisdom.

We read in the

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thirteenth supplication of the “Sahifa Sajjadiya”(1): “You have attributed Your creatures to poverty and they entirely need You. Therefore one, who asks You to compensate the shortcomings of his life and alter his poverty to richness, has indeed turned to the precise Position and the right One to obtain his need. And one, who asks his exigency from one of Your creatures, has certainly deprived himself and does not deserve Your favor.

I eagerly follow the path toward You and I only hope and believe in You. I know that what I ask You is easy before Your Strength, however difficult it may be to me. And I realize that what I need is so trivial for You, however significant it may be for me. Your Generosity does not become narrow by anyone’s exigency and it is Your Bounty, which is above all other generosities.”

The world and its beings that were nothing and did not even deserve a reference, became beings by Allah’s Will. And they continue existence under His Mercy and Strength. They are not independent of Allah; they are basically poor, pitiable and humble before Him.

A human being is not worthy of exhibiting power and pride before Allah’s Strength, since his body is as trivial as a handful of soil, his soul is but a moment of existence, and his mind is incapable of knowing even a tiny atom. A human cannot seperate himself before Allah Whose Mercy has surrounded all his life; otherwise it causes him loss and

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1- A book of supplications by the fifth Imam, Imam Sajjad a.s.

deprivation from Allah’s Mercy and is thus, doomed punishment.

Commentary of: “Wa bi jabarutika’llati ghalabta biha kulla shay”

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وَبِجَبرُوتِکَ الَّتِی غَلَبْتَ بِهَا کُلَّ شَیٍْء

(I ask You) by Your Invincibility, through which You overwhelm all things.

Lexically, the Arabic word “جبروت” (Invincibility) is a hyperbole; it means Allah compensates for all the shortcomings and inadequacies of the creatures by granting them every blessing, necessary tools and equipment; a lofty compensation.

All the beings are insignificant before being created; their primary element is an atom, a particle, a seed, or a trivial semen. They have inadequacies at first that are covered by Allah’s Invincibility, so that all the creatures reach their full entity and occupy their due position in the living world.

Allah’s Compensation of the insufficiencies

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The compensation of creatures’ shortcomings by Allah is an important issue, some instances of which are narrated from scientific books, hoping that they increase our faith in the Lofty Source of Bounty.

Compensation of sun’s exhausted energy

The sun, which is a major source of our energy, is only a small element of this world. Its heat is so intense that no element of fire can compete with it. The surface temperature of the sun is approximately 6093 degrees centigrade; its inner temperature is yet beyond this figure. In every second, the sun renders more that twelve million and four hundred thousand tons of energy in space. In order to produce the heat used by the sun in one minute, we will need 679 million billion tons of coal.

The energy exhausted by the sun in a minute weighs about four million tons and it turns to

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126’144’000’000’000 tons in each year. However, no fire can go on burning without energy. Thus, if the sun does not obtain anything from an external source and burns this amount of energy per year, why doesn’t it get cold? Meanwhile, if the sun was made of pure coal, it could not burn for more than sixty centuries.

The answer to this question is only given by Allah’s Invincibility. He has created the sun as a huge mass of gasses, which regains the exhausted energy by contraction. This fact is the result of numerous scientific studies in the east and the west who have written hundreds of pages of books that is available to us but as a simple sentence.

In fact, He is the One Who balances the objects’ exhausted energy in various ways; compensating the sun’s exhausted energy is but one sign of Allah’s Invincibility.

Compensation of Caspian Sea Tide

The Caspian Sea is about 27.6 meters beneath the sea level and it still continues to go further down. The Caspian Sea is not related to the free seas so its tide is not in concurrence with the oceans’ general ebb and flow. Due to its small size, this sea cannot use the gravity of the moon and so technically it shouldn’t have had a tide. As a result the sea should have rot long ago, polluting its shores, and losing any living things in and on it. But why did it not happen?

The Omnipotent Who created the sea very well knew how compensate this shortcoming. He

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sent winds called “Sarnuk”, “Khazari”, and “Miyanwa”(1) that creates waves in the sea to such an extent that the rivers pouring into it have tides too. These winds blow so powerfully that most fishermen cannot even control their boats against them. Another duty of the mentioned winds is that they drive the clouds from the north to the south of the sea and produce rain in the northern shores of Iran, providing the meadows in this region a garden of flowers.

The winds also send the seawater into “Anzali marsh” to filter it. Due to constant flood-like rain, the rivers in Gilan(2) are usually muddy and full of seeds and roots from the woods. The mud of the rivers pouring into the marsh thickens the bottom layer, allowing the seeds and roots, too, to grow inside the marsh. These two factors are sufficient to dry the water in the marsh and turn it into a swamp. Thus, what is the reason that this marsh has existed for hundreds of years now?

To avoid this, the Almighty sends the seawater to the floods. At the same time as the above-mentioned winds send the clouds from the north of the sea to the south, the fresh seawater flows to the muddy river water and mixes with it, making it less dense and removing any seeds and roots by its salt.

When these winds stop, Allah sends other winds called “Keramwa”, “Kenarowa” and “Aftab Bushu” to reverse the water flow, pouring the marsh water into the

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1- These are the name of the winds in Farsi Mazandarani accent.
2- Gilan is a Northern province of Iran.

Caspian Sea, and hence evacuating the marsh from muddy waters.

Still two other winds called “Gilwa” and “Durushtwa” are assigned with the duty of convulsing the marsh water from the East to the West, in order to blend it together!!(1)

Allah’s Compensation of Fruit Seeds Shortage

Fruit seeds are useless until they are planted and are subjected to Allah’s Invincibility that shapes them in various forms.

A pleasant apple was once a tiny and closed seed inside a grocery store box. It was not of use as a seed except if it were to be planted. When the farmer placed it under the soil, some agents like fresh air, light, water and mineral elements helped it to compensate its shortcomings, by Allah’s Will. So the apple became a delicious, pleasant, and colorful fruit, which an adornment for gathering and food for humans.

Taking a quick look at the ingredients of the apple which makes us more familiar with Allah’s Invincibility:

Azotic (nitrogen) ingredients: proteins and amino acids like lizine, ursenin, histidine, and tirusine)

Minerals: iodine, potassium, boron, phosphor, calcium, iron, cupper, cudium, sulphur, manganese, zinc, and penizium.

Starch-Glucose materials: dextrose, cellulose, pentosan, and starch.

Sugars: glucose, fructose, and sucrose.

Pectic materials: pectic acid, pectin, pecthinic acid, and protopectin.

Fats and acids: malic acid, citric acid, oxalic acid, ascorbic acid, and lactic acid.

Color ingredients: antocianines, and chlorophyll.

Vitamins: A, B, C, and G.

Enzymes: catalos, and oxidase.

Water: 84 percent.

This is how the Invincible compensates the shortcomings of a fruit. If we were to simply indicate His compensation to other entities as well as to spiritual elements, we would need

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1- Neshane hayi az ‘u: 151.

infinite number of blank pages as much as the number of all the entire human population.

Commentary of: “Wa bi ‘izzatika’llati la yaqawm laha shay”

point

وَبِعِزَّتِکَ الَّتِی لا یَقُومُ لَهَا شَیْءٌ

(I ask You) by Your Might, which nothing can resist.

Allah has created everything by His Strength, and encompassed them with His Mercy. Everything shows humbleness and humility before Him. He has compensated all shortcomings by His Invincibility. How can anything, in whatever position it may be, resist His Might?

All inhabitants from the heavens and the earth, and from the hidden to the visible beings are but rays of His enlightening Might. The creatures are only shadows of His Essence, so how they can resist His eternal Might and infinite Strength.

The Arabic word “عزه”, which means strength, exists in all the creatures, as part of Allah’s holy Strength. The glimmer of a small light is far inferior from the rays of an infinite and eternal source of an Illuminating Light!

فَلِلَّهِ الْعِزَّهُ جَمِیعًا.

To Allah belong all glory and power. (35:10)

Based on this holy Qur’anic verse, All the power is belonged to Allah. He grants power to anyone He wills, according to his/her capacity. He does not grant power to anyone he does not like, and regains power from anyone He wills. Therefore, no authority is independent of Him and no one can resist His Power. He is the Undefeated Might.

Commentary of: “Wa bi ‘azhamatika’llati mala’t kulla shay”

وَبِعَظَمَتِکَ الَّتِی مَلَأَتْ کُلَّ شَیٍْء

(I ask You) by Your Greatness, which has filled all things.

Knowing the Actor by His Act

It is conceivable that to some extent, the position

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and rank of an actor can be realized through his act. An engineer, who builds a 110-story skyscraper, is probably a skillful and intelligent person.

A distinguished author, like Sadr Al-Muta’ahhilin, who have written some invaluable books such as “Asfar”, “Arshiya”, “Hikmat Muta’aliya”, “Asrar Al-Ayat”, demonstrates a great mentality and high intellect in his writings.

We recognize the skill of an inventor of an electric factory through his accurate job of illuminating the dark nights to become as bright as the days.

The Almighty’s greatness is in His Preexistence, Eternity and Infinity. But His greatness is not easily recognizable for us. Yet, we can observe rays of His Greatness by pondering on the world, the creatures, and the magnitude of creation, since His greatness is contained in everything.

We mention just two traditions and a scientific fact in order to clarify our point.

Creation of Various Worlds

The great scholar, Sayyid Hiybat Al-Din Shahristani, in his singular book “Islam wa Hiy’at” (Islam and Astronomy) has narrated from “Khisal” of Saduq, “Bihar al-Anwar” of Allamiyi Majlisi, “Anwar Nu’maniyya”, “Sharh Sahifa”, and “Tafsiri Nur Al-Thaqalayn” a tradition by Imam Sadiq (as), with a strong citation:

إنَّ للهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ اثْنَی عَشَرَ ألفِ عالَمٍ؛ کُلُّ عالَمٍ مِنْهُمْ أکْبَرُ مِنْ سَبْعِ سَمَاواتٍ وَسَبْعِ أرَضینَ، ما یُرَی عالَمٌ مِنْهُم أنَّ للهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ عالَماً غَیْرَهُمْ.

The Almighty has created twelve thousand worlds, each of which is larger than all the heavens and the earth, and none of them is cognizant of the worlds outside its world!(1)

The contemporary astrologers believe that the living world is composed of

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1- Khisal: 2/639, min rawa anna lillah ‘azza wa jal…, tradition 14; Bihar al-Anwar: 54/320, bab 2, tradition 2.

thousands of worlds, each of which contains heavens and the earths larger than our world’s.(1)

By referring to numbers, the Holy Qur’an and the traditions do not intend to show the exact record or extent of things, but rather to illustrate their enormity. We should not, therefore, consider the number of the worlds as twelve thousand. The number of the worlds is far beyond what is mentioned in the holy Qur’an, the traditions, and the astrological books.

Hanging Lanterns in the Heaven and the Solar System

In his “Sharh Sahifa”, Sayyid Ni’mat Allah Jazayiri has narrated from the Prophet (S) and the infallible Imams (as) that Allah has created a hundred thousand lanterns, hanging them from the sky. Allah has placed all the heavens and the earth and the things inside them in one of these lanterns, and only He knows about what is inside the other lanterns!

Allama Shahristani, in the exigency of this fascinating tradition says that there are similarities between lanterns and the solar system:

First, a lantern is oval is shape, and according to contemporary scientists the solar system has an oval shape too.

Second, a lantern contains an object at its center that spreads light and heat, and the scientists believe that the solar system too has the sun at its heart, scattering out light and heat to the surrounding planets.

Thirdly, a lantern is floating in the air, not fixed to a wall or an object, just like our solar system which is floating in space, too.

Fourth, the illuminating object of a lantern is not exactly at its

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1- Islam wa Hiy’at: 444.

center and is leans closer to one side; the sun, too, is not at the exact center of the solar system.

Considering these resemblances, the correspondence of this tradition to the modern astrological basics and its disagreement with the old philosophy has become clear and proven. Therefore, this tradition explicitly proves the existence of thousands of worlds and solar systems, each containing separate planets, moons, suns, earths, heavens and hells, and that each of the worlds inside the lanterns is as large as a solar system and as vast as the heavens and the earth!(1)

Suns, the Countless Stars

In the beginning of the twentieth century, people were amazed to here that our galaxy, which is clearly observable at night, has thirty million sun. But today, it has been proved that there are ten thousand million suns, that too, only in our galaxy.

When we look at the night sky without a telescope it seems small and insignificant and not as glorious as the massive clouds on a winter day. But when viewed by a large modern telescope like the one at “Wilson” or “Palumer” observatories, the greatness of this galaxy becomes observable.

The suns are positioned so compactly in our galaxy that counting them in order to determine an exact number is not possible. No scientist has yet determined the exact number of suns in the galaxy. They can only estimate a ten thousand million number by considering a limited part of it, counting its suns, and then generalizing the number to the whole system!

The total number

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1- Islam wa Hiy’at: 460.

of the suns is presumably more than this because they are so condensed that some conceal others, making them indiscernible. Among the suns of our galaxy there are some suns that are ten million times of our sun! Sometimes the galaxies are two million light years apart from each other.

Today’s greatest telescope at the Palumar Mountain in America can observe galaxies at the distance of a thousand million light years. But occasionally some lights glitter beyond this distance that show scientists other galaxies exist, too!

The sun of the solar system weighs two billion tons and our galaxy, which is only a small corner of the great world, weighs approximately 165 thousand million times the weight of sun! Though there are so many objects scattered in the world, it is mostly empty, with so many vacancies in between!(1)

All this is but a small perspective of the huge world, observed by our limited telescopes. By studying these numbers and statistics that depict a very narrow view of our world, its size, depth and breadth, we can imagine the Greatness of Allah; a Greatness that is infinite and is contained in everything.

This huge world is Allah’s artwork; His factory and His book. By viewing Allah’s work, His Greatness is observable which makes us call out:

اَللهُ اَکْبَرُ مِنْ اَنْ یُوصَفَ.

Allah is Exalted above what he is described.(2)

The most animated describers are incapable of describing Him, the most eloquent tongues are unable to express Him, and the most powerful thoughts cannot realize even a part

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1- Islam wa Hiy’at: 449.
2- Al-Kafi: 1/118, bab Ma’ani Al-Asma’…, tradition 9.

of His Greatness!

In accord with our own understanding, we can only say the same thing our Prophet has taught us:

مَا عَرَفْنَاکَ حَقَّ مَعْرِفَتِکَ

We cannot appreciate Your due Greatness.(1)

Commentary of: “Wa bi Sultanika’alladhi ‘ala kulla shay”

وَبِسُلْطَانِکَ الَّذِی عَلاَ کُلَّ شَیٍْء

(I ask You) by Your Power, which towers over all things.

In the preceding pages, you read about some limited instances of the great world. Allah’s inevitable Rule is over the world and its inhabitants. He dominates all things, and all creatures are doomed to His Powerful Reign.

Anyone who has a rightful and deserving regime in this world, it is but as a gift from Allah. Once He wills, He can take the power from one servant and grant it to another.

The rulers should consider their power as a ray of Allah’s Dominance and Rule and should not rule unfairly and unlawfully, for if they do so, they will be oppressors. As it is stated in Qur’anic verses and is proved throughout history, Allah’s revenge, which controls all things, would seize them. They cannot resist Allah’s Will, and will remain in doomed chastisement humbly and contemptibly.

It is Allah’s Rule that ordered the water descending from the sky and springing from the earth to become into storm and eliminate the disbelievers in Noah’s age. It was His Rule that sent the winds to eradicate the powerful ‘Ad tribe, just as dry grass is removed from the earth, and brought their life to an end in just a moment. It was His Rule that ordered the River Nile to send

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1- ‘Awali Al-La’i: 4/ 132, tradition 227; Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 23, Bab 61, tradition 1.

a wave and obliterate the oppressive Pharaoh and his people.

Commentary of: “Wa bi wajhika’lbaqia ba’da fana’i kully shay”

وَبِوَجْهِکَ الْبَاقِی بَعْدَ فَنَآءِ کُلِّ شَیٍْء

(I ask You) by Your Face, which subsists after annihilation of all things.

Allah’s Holy Essence is the core of existence. His Existence is Preexisting and Eternal. He has always existed without any counterpart, and will always exist so. He has willed to create all things wisely, while He is independent of all things. Everything will come to an end, except He, Who will be forever.

Nothing in this world exists independently; the life of all beings is a blowing of the Divine Soul, and therefore everything is doomed to mortality. Mortality is an attribute of deficiency, while eternity is an attribute of perfection. Hence the Absolute Perfection has Absolute Eternity, and mortality is the attribute of all the beings and their lives.

Commentary of: “Wa bia’smaa’ika’llati malat Arkana kully shay”

وَبِأَسْمَآئِکَ الَّتِی مَلَأَتْ أَرْکَانَ کُلِّ شَیٍْء

(I ask You) by Your Names, which have filled the foundations of all things.

The word “اسماء” (Names) in this divine phrase does not merely denote the lexical Names that are composed of series of letters; rather it is the attributes, facts and concepts, which these Names connote.

Allah’s Mercy, Knowledge, Justice, and Power are the basics for all things. In other words, all things are signs of Allah; the Creative, the Shaper, the All-Knowing, the All-Seeing, the Just, the Wise, the Merciful, and the Compassionate.

The creatures are created, continue existence, and obtain sustenance based on these facts and attributes of Allah. The lexical Names are therefore manifestations of

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the real Names. What are significant in the existence, identity, and repute of “all things” are the real Names not the lexical ones.

Anyhow, Allah’s real Names are mediators for the happening of actualities in this world. In the Sama’ supplication, narrated by an Infallible Imam, we read:

أَللّهُمَّ إِنّی أَسْأَلُکَ بِاسْمِکَ الْعَظیمِ الاَْعْظَمِ الاَْعَزِّ الاَْجَلِّ الاَْکْرَمِ الَّذی إِذا دُعیتَ بِهِ عَلی مَغالِقِ أَبْوابِ السَّمآءِ لِلْفَتْحِ بِالرَّحْمَهِ انْفَتَحَتْ، وَإِذا دُعیتَ بِهِ عَلی مَضآئِقِ أَبْوابِ الاَْرْضِ لِلْفَرَجِ انْفَرَجَتْ، وَإِذا دُعیتَ بِهِ عَلَی العُسْرِ لِلْیُسْرِ تَیَسَّرَتْ، وَإِذا دُعیتَ بِهِ عَلَی الاَْمْواتِ لِلنُّشُورِ انْتَشَرَتْ، وَإِذا دُعیتَ بِهِ عَلی کَشْفِ الْبَأسآءِ وَالضَّرّاءِ انْکَشَفَتْ…

O Allah! I ask You by Your Great Name, the most Powerful, the most Notable, the most Worthy, by which if You are called for opening the heavens’ doors, they are opened by Mercy; if You are called for opening the earthly doors, they are opened; if You are called by Your Name for relieving the troubles, they are relieved; if You are called by your Great name for the Resurrection of the dead, they are alive; and if You are called for removing poorness and anxiety, they are removed…

What materializes the needs, stated in this supplication, is not the mere Name that is consisted of the letters n, m, a, and e; rather the Name itself and its reality.

The attributes that are the basis for “all things” are the reality of the existing realities, which are called “Names” in the holy Qur’an and the traditions.

Among the manifestations of Allah’s Names is the Prophet’s

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Household and the Infallible Imams (as), who have special characteristics and are the mediators of Allah’s Mercy for people until Day of Resurrection. Allah’s Mercy, Guidance, Compassion and Forgiveness is granted to the people through the Imams (as) and the believers’ deeds are also accepted through them.

The great scholar, al-Faydh al-Kashani, in his valuable Qur’anic exegesis “Safi” has narrated Imam Sadiq (as):

نَحْنُ وَاللهِ الأسْمَاءُ الحُسْنَی الَّذِی لا یَقْبَلُ اللهُ مِنَ العِبَادِ عَمَلاً الاَّ بِمَعْرِفَتِنَا.

By Allah that we (the Prophet’s Household) are Allah’s Glorious Names; Allah accepts not a single deed from His servants except that they know us and appreciate our position.

As a result, concentrating to the lexis does not benefit the human or manifest a reality for him. We should go beyond the words and phrases to the realm of Reality, since everything apparent in the world is the sign of Allah’s real names and realities.

وَبالاسْمِ الَّذی خَلَقْتَ بِهِ العَرْشَ وَبالاسْمِ الَّذِی خَلَقْتَ بِهِ الکُرْسِیَّ وَبالاسْمِ الَّذِی خَلَقْتَ بِهِ الرُّوحَ…

By Your Name by which You created the Empyrean, by Your Name for which You created the throne, and by whose Blessings You fashioned the Soul.

Commentary of:

point

وَبِعِلْمِکَ الَّذِی أَحَاطَ بِکُلِّ شَیٍْء

(I ask You) by Your Knowledge, which encompasses all things.

Allah’s Knowledge encompasses all of the actions and all of the times. It encompasses the apparent and hidden aspects of all beings; even that of an atom, billions of which can be placed at the point of a needle. Allah knows the number of all the creatures, even the atoms,

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the seeds, the drops of rain and flakes of snow. Here we just mention some verses of the holy Qur’an that is an ocean of knowledge.

وَیَعْلَمُ مَا فِی السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِی الأَرْضِ.

He knows what is in the heavens and what is on earth. (3:29)

وَیَعْلَمُ مَا فِی الْبَرِّ وَالْبَحْرِ وَمَا تَسْقُطُ مِنْ وَرَقَهٍ إِلاَّ یَعْلَمُهَا.

He knows what is in land and sea; not a leaf falls, but He knows it. (6:59)

وَاللَّهُ یَعْلَمُ مَا تُسِرُّونَ وَمَا تُعْلِنُونَ.

And Allah knows what you keep secret and what you publish. (16:19)

یَعْلَمُ مَا یَلِجُ فِی الْأَرْضِ وَمَا یَخْرُجُ مِنْهَا وَمَا یَنزِلُ مِنْ السَّمَاءِ وَمَا یَعْرُجُ فِیهَا وَهُوَ الرَّحِیمُ الْغَفُورُ.

He knows what penetrates into the earth, and what comes forth from it, what comes down from heaven, and what goes up to it; He is the All-compassionate, the All-forgiving. (34:2)

The reality of these verses becomes apparent when we closely study an incision in a hill, thousands of which are found in all five continents. Entomologists have counted nearly seven hundred thousand types of insects so far; however, the exact number of the different types of insects is impossible to be determined. In a summer day when the sky is clear, the number of flies, beetles, and millipedes moving in a hill’s incision is more than the total number of the population of that continent. If humans were to suddenly become extinct from the earth, other creatures living on the earth would hardly ever notice their absence!(1)

وَبِنُورِ وَجْهِکَ الَّذِی أَضَآءَ لَهُ کُلُّ شَیٍْء

(I ask You) by the Light

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1- Danestani hayi jahan I ilm: 190.

of Your Face, through which all things are illuminated!

The Meaning of Light in Qur’anic Verses and Traditions

In the holy Qur’an and traditions, ‘light’ implies values and perfections. ‘Light’ means guidance(1). ‘Light’ means success in travelling towards belief(2). ‘Light’ means Islam, insight, knowledge. It means brightness of the spirit(3). ‘Light’ is Qur’an:

قَدْ جَاءَکُمْ مِنْ اللَّهِ نُورٌ وَکِتَابٌ مُبِینٌ.

There has come to you from Allah a light, and a Manifest Book. (5:15)

‘Light’ also means divine rules, doctrines and moral facts:

إِنَّا أَنزَلْنَا التَّوْرَاهَ فِیهَا هُدًی وَنُورٌ.

Surely We sent down the Torah, wherein is guidance and light. (5:44)

According to these references, it becomes clear that ‘light’ is the essence of Allah’s Attributes, Accomplishments, and Glorious Names from which all the creatures benefit to the highest degree of their existence, capacity, and capability. The creatures would then get rid of their obscurity.

In this apt situation, the talented human goes from the darkness of inexistence to the light of existence, from incapability to perfection, from the darkness of ignorance to the light of knowledge, from oppression to justice, from unbelief to faith, from deviation to guidance, from materialism to spirituality; in order to rise in position, all due to Allah’s Light, Names, and Attributes, Who is the Pure Light and Reality.

Qur’anic verses and the traditions of Prophet’s Household (as) imply that “Light of Face” has the same realities and perfections, a thousand of which have been pointed out in Jowshan Kabir supplication.

The reason ‘Light’ is used as a singular is because all of Allah’s Lofty Names are actually His Existence, and there is nothing

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1- al-Mizan: 1/487.
2- Tafsir Abu Al-Futouh: 1/331.
3- Kashf Al-Asrar: 1/ 703.

as noun or adjective in His Holy Sanctuary. Knowledge, Wisdom, Justice, Mercy, Compassion… are all the Existence of the One.

Since ‘Light’ mainly means guidance in Islamic texts the above-mentioned phrase may mean: “O Allah! I ask You by Your Guidance, by which all the creatures are guided.”

Thus, the word ‘light’ covers all the heavenly concepts and attributes, and it is left to common sense to choose among the various meanings according to the situation.

Commentary of:

یَّا نُورُ یَا قُدُّوسُ یَآ أَوَّلَ الأَوَّلِینَ وَیَآ آخِرَ الآخِرِینَ

O Light! O All-Holy! O First of the first and Last of the last!

O the Perfect One! You are the One whose friend and servant, Imam Hussain (as) called You in the desert of Arafah on ‘Arafat day:

أَیَکُونُ لِغَیْرِکَ مِنَ الظُّهُورِ ما لَیْسَ لَکَ، حَتّی یَکُونَ هُوَ الْمُظْهِرَ لَکَ، مَتی غِبْتَ حَتّی تَحْتاجَ إِلی دَلیل یَدُلُّ عَلیْکَ، وَمَتی بَعُدْتَ حَتّی تَکُونَ الاْثارُ هِیَ الَّتی تُوصِلُ إِلَیْکَ؟

Does anything have an existence which You don’t have, so that it would give You existence? You have never been hidden to need any reason to justify You, and You have never been far away to need the signs to direct us to You.

O Lord! When I leave my transient state and return to my own self, looking closely, I observe that the Light of Your Beauty is clearer than everything else. You are by no means hidden, thus I do not need any form of light to search Your Divine Position, because once I take a reality as the

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reason for my exploration, I come to understand that the reality and the light are both Your creations.

When and where were You absent that You need a rationale justifying, and when and where have You been away so that Your signs direct us to You?

You are free of all faults, and greater than anything to which You are described. You are the most Perfect, the Absolute Reality, the Light and the Holy. You are the First of the first, but there is no beginning for Your Holy Existence, and You are the Last of the last without having an end. You are Preexisting while You make all things begin, and You are Eternal after all beings will annihilate.

The first and the last are two attributes for all your creations. All of them have been given a beginning and an end. The entities have a beginning, for once upon a time they were nothing and You created them, and they have an end means that the creatures come to an end. You bring them to an end. So You have existed before “all things” and nothing had existed before You, and You will exist after “all things” and nothing would exist after You.

O First of the first and Last of the last!

Commentary of:

point

اللَّهُمَ اغْفِرْ لِیَ الذُّنُوبَ الَّتِی تَهتِکُ الْعِصَمَ

O Allah, forgive me those sins which tear apart safeguards!

The deeds, behaviors, states, and manners that are against Allah's orders and His Prophet's and Imams' traditions are considered as sins. Some sins

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are so severe that they are considered as declaration of war with Allah and His Prophet (S).

The sins an individual commits in this world, would result in an an eternal fire afflicting the sinner in the Hereafter:

إِنَّ الَّذِینَ یَأْکُلُونَ أَمْوَالَ الْیَتَامَی ظُلْمًا إِنَّمَا یَأْکُلُونَ فِی بُطُونِهِمْ نَارًا وَسَیَصْلَوْنَ سَعِیرًا.

“Those who devour the property of orphans unjustly, devour Fire in their bellies… (4:10)”

Committing sins is, in fact, getting sustenance from the All Generous and becoming ungrateful to Him for His hospitality. It is quite unfair to benefit from Allah's Blessings for years and then become ungrateful to Him.

The Story of Gratefulness for the Hospitality of a Generous

Ya'qub Layth, the famous figure of Sistan and the leader of liberalizing revolution against the oppressive Abbasid dynasty, was the son of a zinc-worker. As a child, he was engaged in his father's work for a while and spent his wages generously on his friends. His bravery and generosity made other brave youngsters accompany him. Leaving the work of zinc, he began to do some other form of work with his friends. But soon they quit that job, too, and decided to steal from the treasury of the ruler of Sistan. Since skillful guards protected the treasury, this was not an easy job. They decided to dig a canal underground from the suburbs unto the floor of the treasury and steal all it swiftly.

It took them six months to dig the canal and finally, they entered the treasury at midnight. They secretly assembled all the gold, silver, jewelry, and drachmas in various bags and

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prepared to go out through the canal, when a dazzling jewel attracted the attention of Ya'qub in the darkness. He could not identify it due to the darkness and hence tasted it to find that it was a piece of crystallized salt. Suddenly, he ordered his followers to leave the treasure and leave through the canal to the suburbs.

The surprised youngsters accompanying him returned to the city empty-handed but demanded to know the reason for this change in plan. Ya'qub said: “Though we had worked six consecutive months to reach the treasury but when it was time to collect all its property, I saw it unfair to ransack the assets of the ruler after I had tasted the salt belonging to him.”

Opening the treasury gate, the guards were surprised to see the canal skillfully dug and the assets intact, and reported the event to the ruler of Sistan. The ruler ordered to announce in the city he would reward the thief if he introduced himself. Ya'qub introduced himself to the ruler peacefully, and told him of his unfairness of tasting the salt which belonged to the ruler, and betraying him.

The ruler of Sistan was happy to see such a brave, fair, and generous youngster and appointed Ya'qub as the army commander of Sistan. Ya'qub progressed in the same position and managed to fight the corrupted Abbasid government to save the oppressed.

Committing sins is spiritual impurity, which pollutes the heart, mind, and deprives man from Allah's Mercy and Blessings.

Committing sins tears

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off the veils guarding humans against chastisement and disgrace and unveils his secrets in this world and in the Hereafter. It deprives humans from being Allah's servant, his faults from being concealed by Allah, and His Forgiveness!

Religious notables have divided the sins into two main categories; major (cardinal) and minor sins. Imam Sadiq (as) has stated that major sins are those for which the Almighty has obligated Hell.

If man avoids the major sins and protects himself from polluting his humanity, Allah would forgive his other sins and grant him His Mercy and Forgiveness:

إِنْ تَجْتَنِبُوا کَبَائِرَ مَا تُنْهَوْنَ عَنْهُ نُکَفِّرْ عَنْکُمْ سَیِّئَاتِکُمْ وَنُدْخِلْکُمْ مُدْخَلاً کَرِیمًا.

“If you avoid the heinous sins that are forbidden you, We will acquit you of evil deeds, and admit you by the gate of honor. (4:31)”

In the valuable book ‘Uyun Akhbar Al-al-Ridha’, it is narrated from the eighth infallible Imam (as) that the major sins are:

1. Killing a human whose killing Allah has forbidden. 2. Adultery. 3. Theft. 4. Drinking intoxicants. 5. Getting cursed by one's parents. 6. Escaping Jihad (holy war). 7. Seizing orphans' assets oppressively. 8. Eating blood, corpse, pork, and whatever killed without the Name of Allah. 9. Usury. 10. Earning unlawful money. 11. Gambling. 12. Shortening the measures. 13. Accusing a blameless. 14. Homosexuality. 15. Hopelessness of Allah's Mercy. 16. Considering oneself safe from Allah's chastisement. 17. Helping the oppressors. 18. Befriending the oppressors. 19. False swearing. 20. Capturing people's rights without need. 21. Lying. 22. Pride. 23. Extravagance. 24. Dissipation. 25. Disloyalty.

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26. Despising Hajj. 27. Fighting Allah's friends. 28. Engaging in useless hobbies. 29. Insistence on committing sins.

Inauspicious Consequences of Committing Sins

Qur’anic verses and traditions contain instances of the outcome of committing sins. Committing sins ruins belief and diminishes good deeds. Sins bring about worldly misfortune and catastrophes and also chastisement in the Hereafter. Committing sins hinders acceptance of prayers by Allah. It deprives humans from intercessions, and make the hearts cruel. Sins make words of religion ineffective.

They make human arrogant and deprived of Allah's sustenance. They keep humans away from serving Allah. Committing sins results in gradual dominance of Satan over humans; it tears down the discipline present in the society and the families. Sins make people apprehensive of each other. They bring about a painful and difficult death and difficulty in the Hereafter.

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as):

أمَا إنَّهُ لَیْسَ مِنْ عِرْقٍ یَضْرِبُ وَلا نَکْبَهٍ وَلا صُدَاعٍ وَلا مَرَضٍ إلا بِذَنْبٍ، وَذلِکَ قَوْلُ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ فِی کِتَابِهِ: “وَمَا أَصَابَکُمْ مِنْ مُصِیبَهٍ فَبِمَا کَسَبَتْ أَیْدِیکُمْ وَیَعْفُو عَنْ کَثِیرٍ.”

No vein is cut, no foot strikes a stone, no trouble is made, no sickness is caused except for committing a sin. That's why the Almighty has stated in His Book: ‘Whatever affliction may visit you is for what your own hands have earned; and He pardons much. (42:30)’(1)

It is also narrated from him:

إنَّ الرَّجُلَ یُذْنِبُ الذَّنْبَ فَیُحْرَمُ صَلاهَ اللَّیْلِ وَإنَّ العَمَلَ السَّیِّءَ أسْرَعُ فِی صَاحِبِهِ مِنَ السِّکِّینِ فِی اللَّحْمِ.

Whenever an individual misses saying his night prayer, he has certainly committed a sin. The

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1- Al-Kafi, 2:269.

effect of a sin on the sinner is faster than the effect of a knife in meat.(1)

It is narrated from Imam al-Ridha (as):

أوحَی اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ إلَی نَبِیٍّ مِنَ الأنْبِیَاءِ: إذَا أُطِعْتُ رَضِیتُ، وَإذَا رَضِیتُ بَارَکْتُ، وَلَیْسَ لِبَرَکَتِی نِهَایَهٌ، وَإذَا عُصِیتُ غَضِبْتُ، وَإذا غَضِبْتُ لَعَنْتُ، وَلَعْنَتِی تَبْلُغُ السَّابِعَ مِنَ الوَرَی.

The Almighty told one of the Prophets (as) through revelation: If I am obeyed, I would be pleased, and if I am pleased, I would give Blessings, and My Blessings are infinite. If I am disobeyed, I would be Wrathful, and if I become Wrathful, I curse, and My Curse would affect seven generations ahead.(2)

Throughout history, it has been proved that sometimes the progeny of oppressors have been afflicted by poverty, pain, disability, or narrowness of sustenance. This is, in fact, a Blessing from Allah for them, so that they do not become involved in sins and revolt.

On the instance of committing sins, it is narrated from Amir Al-Mu'minin (as):

مَا مِنْ عَبْدٍ إلاَّ وَعَلَیْهِ جُنَّهٌ حَتَّی یَعْمَلَ أرْبَعِینَ کَبِیرَهً؛ فَإذَا عَمِلَ أرْبَعِینَ کَبِیرَهً انْکَشَفَتْ عَنْهُ الجُنَّهُ، فَیُوحِی اللهُ إلَی المَلائِکَهِ أنْ اسْتُرُوا عَبْدِی بِأجْنِحَتِکُمْ، فَتَسْتُرُهُ المَلائِکَهُ بِأجْنِحَتِهَا، (قال) فَمَا یَدَعُ شَیْئاً مِنَ القَبِیحِ إلاَّ قَارَفَهُ حَتَّی یَمْتَدِحَ إلَی النَّاسِ بِفِعْلِهِ القَبِیحِ، فَتَقُولُ المَلائِکَهُ: یَا رَبِّ، هَذا عَبْدُکَ مَا یَدَعُ شَیْئاً إلاَّ رَکِبَهُ وإنَّا لَنَسْتَحْیِی مِمَّا یَصْنَعُ. فَیُوحِی اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ إلَیْهِمْ أن اِرْفَعُوا أجْنِحَتَکُمْ عَنْهُ، فَإذا فُعِلَ ذَلِکَ أخَذَ بِبُغْضِنَا أهْلَ البَیْتِ فَعِنْدَ ذَلِکَ یَتَهَتَّکُ سِتْرُهُ فِی السَّمَاءِِ وَسِتْرُهُ فِی الأرْضِ، فَتَقُولُ المَلائِکَهُ: یَا رَبُّ هَذا عَبْدُکَ قَد بَقِیَ مَهْتُوکَ السِّتْرِ.

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1- Al-Kafi, 2:272.
2- Al-Kafi, 2:272.

فَیُوحِی اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ إلَیْهِمْ: لَوْ کَانَتْ للهِ فِیهِ حَاجَهٌ مَا أمَرَکُمْ أنْ تَرْفَعُوا أجْنِحَتَکُمْ عَنْهُ.

There is no servant but there are forty veils of reverence for him, until he commits forty major sins. After doing so, Allah reveals to the angels: Cover My servant with your wings. The angels cover the servant with their wings. Then that servant commits every sin he wishes to the extent that he takes pride in doing sins among people. The angels say: O Allah! Your servant commits every sin and we are ashamed of his wrongdoing. Allah reveals to them: Take your wings off from him. Then that servant begins enmity with the Prophet's Household (as) and his reverence is violated in the heavens and the earth. The angels say: O Allah! Your servant's reverence is violated. The Almighty reveals to them: If I attended to him, I didn't order you to take your wings off him!

A pious believer, who remembers Allah and the Day of Resurrection, knows the inauspicious signs of committing sins, and loathes sins apparently and secretly, is a viable human. And a sinner, who is ignorant of Allah and the Day of Resurrection, and doesn't fear sins, is actually a dead person.

Sins Tearing off Reverence

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The great narrator of traditions, Shaykh Saduq, in his “Ma'ani Al-Akhbar” has narrated a very important tradition from Imam Zayn Al-'Abidin (as) on the inauspicious signs of sins. Part of the tradition explains that part of Du’a’ Kumayl where all of the phrases begin with “اللهم اغفر لی

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الذنوب التی” (O Allah! Forgive me the sins that…):

The sins that tear off human reverence are: 1. Drinking intoxicants. 2. Gambling. 3. Useless act and speech for making people laugh. 4. Reference to people's deficiencies. 5. Accompanying the alleged sinners.

Drinking Intoxicants

Imam Musa Ibn Ja'far, Imam al-Ridha, and Imam al-Jawad (as) have regarded drinking intoxicants as a major sin. The great Eastern and Western scientists have proved that drinking intoxicants has harmful effects on the brain, stomach, liver, heart, kidney, respiratory and circulation tracts, human mind and progeny. Sometimes the resulting diseases are impossible to cure and the drinker is doomed to death.

The wine bottle is a dangerous and harmful enemy to human being, and an impure and foul thing.

The Holy Qur’an has considered drinking intoxicants as impure, filthy, and the act of Satan. Qur’an also contains its harms more than its benefits. Allah has made it unlawful for all people, because of its harmful effects, and He would punish the drinkers severely in this world and the Hereafter, except if the drinker repents.

The Messenger of Allah (S) has cursed ten people in relation to the intoxicant liquid: One who plants a tree for it, one who nurtures the tree, one who extracts the grape or other fruits for it, one who has drunk it, one who is the cupbearer, one who has delivered it with his animal, one who has taken it from the porter, one who has sold it, one who has bought it, and one who has consumed the

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money earned in this way.

یَأتِی شَارِبُ الخَمْرِ یَوْمَ القِیامَهِ مُسْوَدٌّ وَجْهُهُ مُدْلِعاً لِسَانَهُ، یَسِیلُ لُعَابُهُ عَلَی صَدْرِهِ، وَحَقَّ عَلَی اللهِ أنْ یَسْقِیَهُ مِنْ بِئْرِ خَبَالٍ... بِئْرٍ یَسِیلُ فِیها صَدِیدُ الزُّناهِ.

In the Hereafter, the intoxicant drinker enters the Scene of Resurrection with his face black, his mouth crooked, and his tongue out of his mouth, and he cries from thirst. He drinks from a well into which the impurity of the adulterers is poured.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) has stated:

شَارِبُ الخَمْرِ کَعابِدِ الوَثَنِ.

Drinking intoxicants equals idolization.(2)

Imam Baqir (as) has stated:

إنَّ شَارِبَ الخَمْرِ یُحْشَرُ کَافِراً وإنَّهُ رَأسُ المَعَاصِی.

A drinker would be considered as a disbeliever in the Day of Resurrection. Intoxicant liquids are the foundation of all sins!(3)

Amir Al-Mu'minin, Imam ‘Ali (as) was asked: “Have you said that wine is worse than theft and adultery?” Imam confirmed and stated: “An adulterer may not commit any other sin, but when someone drinks wine, he commits adultery, murder, and he quits prayer!”(4)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

مَنْ شَرِبَ الخَمْرَ بَعدَ مَا حَرَّمَهَا اللهُ عَلَی لِسَانِی فَلَیْسَ بِأهْلٍ أنْ یُزَوَّجَ إذَا خَطِبَ وَلا یُشَفَّعَ إذَا شَفَعَ ولا یُصَدَّقَ إذَا حَدَّثَ وَلا یُؤْتَمَنَ عَلی أمَانَهٍ؛ فَمَن إئْتَمَنَهُ بَعْدَ عِلْمِهِ فَلَیْسَ الَّذِی ائْتَمَنَهُ عَلَی اللهِ ضَمَانٌ وَلَیسَ لَهُ أجْرٌ وَلا خَلَفٌ.

One who drinks wine after Allah has announced its prohibition to me, does not deserve a positive response to his request. The intercession of a drinker is not accepted. His speech is unacceptable. He is not a trustee, so if something is given in his trust, there is no

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1- Wasa’il al-Shiah, V. 35, S. 9, H. 31947.
2- Wasa’il al-Shiah, V. 35, S. 12, H. 32003.
3- Wasa’il al-Shiah, V. 35, S. 12, H. 31992.
4- Al-Kafi, 1:403.

guarantee for it from Allah.

Gambling

Gambling is among the major sins. Imam Sadiq (as) has considered it a major sin in an relevant tradition.

The holy Qur’an has only considered wine and gambling as major sins:

یَسْأَلُونَکَ عَنْ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَیْسِرِ قُلْ فِیهِمَا إِثْمٌ کَبِیرٌ.

They will question you concerning wine, and arrow-shuffling. Say: In both is heinous sin. (2:219)

Making any tools for gambling, getting money from them, buying, and selling them are prohibited in Islam. Most Shi'a jurisprudents consider playing with them as unlawful, even if winning and losing is part of the game. Keeping gambling tools is unlawful and it is necessary to destroy them. Being part of a gambling party and watching it are unlawful and it is obligatory to leave the place.

Useless Acts for Amusing People

By useless acts, it means doing those things that have no worldly or heavenly benefits for the performer and the audience, and are complete waste of lifetime, every minute of which is provided by the help of millions of factors for the human being.

Wastage of valuable time is undoubtedly an instance of ungratefulness. Life and time is among the greatest blessings Allah has bestowed on humans. To be grateful for this blessing, one should spend his lifetime worshipping Allah, serving his servants, and obtaining knowledge.

Muhaddith Qumi in his book “Manazil Al-Akhira” narrates: A man called Ibn Samad continuously calculated the past nights and days of his life. One day, he was counting his previous time, which seemed to him as sixty years. He counted the days of his life as

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twenty one thousand and nine hundred. This made him call out: “Woe be to me! If I have done at least one sin a day, I would meet my Lord with twenty one thousand and nine hundred sins.” Saying this, he fainted and then passed away.

Reference to People's Deficiencies

Keeping the honour of Moslems and believers is an important element and highly emphasized in Islam, to the extent that in Islamic teachings a believer's honour has been considered equal to his blood:

عِرْضُ المُؤمِنِ کَدَمِهِ.

If people were to continuously disgrace one another there would be no trust left amongst them. The system of family and society would collapse and affairs of Muslims would be chaotic.

Only the Prophets and Imams are without deficiency and fault. All other people have faults that are hidden from one another’s sight. Although there are some individuals who are not afraid of spreading their faults, most people value their honour and dislike to spread their faults.

As a result, those who refer to people's physical, moral, behavioral, verbal, material, or religious deficiencies and disgrace them are committing major sins, and are doomed to disgrace in this world and chastisement in the Hereafter.

It is narrated from Imam al-Baqir and Imam Sadiq (as):

أقْرَبُ مَا یَکُونُ العَبْدُ إلَی الکُفْرِ أنْ یُؤاخِیَ الرَّجُلَ عَلَی الدِّینِ فَیُحْصِی عَلَیْهِ عَثَراتِهِ وَزَلاَّتِهِ لِیُعَنِّفَهُ بِهَا یَوماً ما.

The nearest act to disbelief is to make a religious fraternity with a man to remind him of his faults, and then blame him for his faults.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) has narrated from the Messenger

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1- Al-Kafi, 2:354.

of Allah (as):

یَا مَعْشَرَ مَنْ أسْلَمَ بِلِسَانِهِ وَلَمْ یُخْلِصِ الإیمَانَ إلَی قَلْبِهِ! لا تَذُمُّوا المُسْلِمِینَ وَلا تَتَّبِعُوا عَوْراتِهِمْ، فإنَّهُ مَنْ تَتَبَّعَ عَوْراتِهِمْ تَتَبَّعَ اللهُ عَوْراتِهِ، وَمَنْ تَتَبَّعَ اللهُ تَعَالَی عَوْراتِهِ یَفْضَحْهُ وَلَوْ فِی بَیْتِهِ.

O You who have embraced Islam verbally but not whole-heartedly! Do not blame Muslims and chase their faults! Because anyone who chases Muslims' faults Allah will chase his faults. And if Allah chases someone's faults, He will disgrace him, though he is in his home.

Accompanying the Alleged Sinners

Humans are impressed by their companions more than anything else. A companion makes the most powerful impression on humans, and so the verses of Holy Quran and traditions from the Prophet's Household (as) provide people, especially the believers, with important guidelines in making friends,

Explaining this fact that appears in the verses and traditions requires a separate discussion. Fortunately, Islamic scholars have authored valuable works in this regard.

The holy Qur’an and the traditions prevent people from accompanying the disbelievers, wrongdoers, the Jews, and even alleged sinners, to prevent the harmful effects of their culture, ethics, and evil ideas on human, which would deprive them from Allah's Mercy.

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

لاَ یَنْبَغِی لِلمُؤمِنِ أنْ یَجْلِسَ مَجْلِساً یُعْصَی اللهُ فِیهِ وَلا یَقْدِرُ عَلی تَغْیِیرِهِ.

It is not deserved for a believer to attend a circle in which Allah is disobeyed, and he is not able to prevent it.(1)

Abu Hashim Ja'fari says: Imam al-Ridha (as) told me: “Why is it that I see you with Abdul Rahman Ibn Ya'qub?” I said: “He is my uncle.” Imam

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1- Al-Kafi, 2:347.

(as) said: “He says an unacceptable thing about Allah; something which is not in accord with Qur’anic verses and the traditions. He describes the Almighty as inanimate objects. So either accompany him and leave us, or be our companion and leave him alone.” I said: “He has his own ideas, and does not harm me. If I don't accept his ideas, I would have no responsibilities.” Imam (as) stated: “Don't you fear that a chastisement would be sent upon him, and encircle you both? Have you heard of the person who was a disciple of Moses (as) and whose father was a disciple of Pharaoh? When the Pharaoh’s army reached Moses (as) and his followers beside the river, the son left Moses (as) to advise his father into joining the followers of Moses. The father was following the Pharaoh and the son was chasing him and quarrelling with him about his ideas. When they reached the edge of the sea they were both drowned. When Moses was informed of this, he said:” Allah's Mercy is upon him, but when Allah's chastisement descends, even those who are just accompanying the wrongdoers would have no safety.”(1)

The Commander of Believers (as) stated:

مَنْ کَانَ یُؤمِنُ باللهِ وَالیَوْمِ الآخِرِ فَلا یَقُومُ مَکَانَ رِیبَهٍ.

Anyone who believes in Allah and the Day of Resurrection would not stand in a doubtful and accusing position.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَنْ قَعَدَ عِنْدَ سَبَّابٍ لأوْلِیَاءِ اللهِ فَقَدْ عَصَی اللهَ تَعالی.

One who accompanies those who curse Allah's friends, have certainly disobeyed Allah.(3)

Jesus Christ

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1- Al-Kafi, 2:347.
2- Al-Kafi, 2:347.
3- Al-Kafi, 2:347.

(as) stated: “Show your friendship with Allah by loathing the sinners; you will approach Allah's Grace by retreating them.” He was then asked: “O Spirit of Allah! Who should we accompany?” He responded: “Accompany someone whose company reminds you of Allah, whose speech increases your knowledge, and whose behavior make you desire the Hereafter.”

The veils that exist between man and Allah’s chastisement and wrath are piety, chastity, honesty, worship, and servitude. These veils remain if man abstains from doing the above-mentioned sins. If human is tempted by the temptations of the apparent and hidden Satans, and pollutes himself with sins, he has torn off these veils and hindrances, making way for calamities and chastisements.

اللَّهُمَ اغْفِرْ لِیَ الذُّنُوبَ الَّتِی تُنْزِلُ النِّقَمَ

O Allah! Forgive me for the sins which bring down adversities!

The Sins Bringing Down the Adversities

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In a valuable and noteworthy tradition, Imam Al-Sajjad (as) has mentioned nine sins that bring down calamities, which are as follows: “1. Rebellion (Baghy), 2. Violating people’s rights, 3. Mocking Allah’s servants, 4. Breaking promises, 5. Evident wrongdoing, 6. Scattering lies, 7. Passing judgment in contrast to Allah’s rules, 8. Not paying Zakat(1), 9. Shortening the measures.”(2)

Rebellion (baghy)

The Arabic word “baghy” means trespassing against Allah and His Rules, violating people’s rights, corruption, wrongdoing, and adultery. It is used in all its meanings in Qur’anic verses:

إِنَّ قَارُونَ کَانَ مِنْ قَوْمِ مُوسَی فَبَغَی عَلَیْهِمْ.

Now Korah was of Moses folk, but he oppressed them… (28:76)

وَلَوْ بَسَطَ اللَّهُ الرِّزْقَ لِعِبَادِهِ لَبَغَوْا فِی الأَرْضِ.

And if Allah were to enlarge the provision for His slaves they would surely

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1- Zakat is statutory Islamic levy on specified items to be used for Muslims’ welfare.
2- Ma’ani Al-Akhbar: 269.

rebel in the earth… (42:27

یَا أُخْتَ هَارُونَ مَا کَانَ أَبُوکِ امْرَأَ سَوْءٍ وَمَا کَانَتْ أُمُّکِ بَغِیًّا.

O sister of Aaron, thy father was not a wicked man, nor was thy mother a woman unchaste. (19:28)

The Messenger of Allah (S) has stated:

إنَّ أسْرَعَ الخَیْرِ ثَواباً البِرُّ، وَإنَّ أسْرَعَ الشَّرِّ عِقاباً البَغْیُ.

Surely the righteousness that is rewarded the fastest is generosity to people, and the wrongdoing that is chastised the fastest is oppressing people.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

سِتَّهٌ لا تَکُونُ فِی المُؤمِنِ: العُسْرُ وَالنَّکَدُ وَاللَّجَاجَهُ وَالکَذِبُ وَالحَسَدُ وَالبَغْیُ.

A believer does not possess six attributes: weakness and incompetence, stinginess, obstinacy, lying, jealousy, and violation of people’s rights.(2)

Violating People’s Rights

The Benevolent Allah has placed a set of rights that is payable to all people, which are necessary to be observed by others. Violating other people’s rights is a sin and the violator is doomed to chastisement.

The right of the parents on their children, the right of the child on the parents, the rights of the relatives on each other, the rights of the neighbors on each other, the rights of the people on the government, and vice versa, the rights of the husband on the wife, the rights of the wife due on the husband, the rights of the subordinates on their superiors in terms of wealth and blessings, the rights of the poor on the rich, and other rights stated in the holy Qur’an and the traditions.

The most comprehensive and eloquent book on the people’s rights is “The Treatise on Rights” of Imam Zayn Al-‘Abidin (as). By

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 72/ 273, Bab 70, tradition 1.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 75/ 263, Bab 23.

contemplating on this book, one manages to know all the rights and feels eligible to observe these rights.

Violating any of the rights is an obvious sin, and is followed by chastisement.

Mocking Allah’s Servants

Ridiculing people for their appearance, poverty, occupation, belief, or any other reason is a major sin that leads to worldly and heavenly punishment.

Mocking people is, in fact, insulting their personality and belittling them. The Holy Qur’an considers the mockers as hypocrites, oppressors, and corruptors.

وَإِذَا لَقُوا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا قَالُوا آمَنَّا وَإِذَا خَلَوْا إِلَی شَیَاطِینِهِمْ قَالُوا إِنَّا مَعَکُمْ إِنَّمَا نَحْنُ مُسْتَهْزِئُونَ.

When they meet those who believe, they say ‘We believe,’ but when they go privately to their Satans, they say ‘We are with you; we were only mocking.’ (2:14)

The Messenger of Allah (S) said: The Almighty stated:

مَنْ أهَانَ لِی وَلِیّاً فَقَدْ أرْصَدَ لِمُحَارَبَتِی.

Anyone who insults a friend of Mine has indeed set out to fight Me!(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

In the Hereafter a caller calls: Where are those who left My friends alone? Then a group of people who have no flesh in their faces stand. So it is said: These are the people who annoyed the believers, rebelled against them, and insulted them for their belief. Afterwards, they are ordered to be taken to the Hell.

Also the Messenger of Allah (S) said: Allah has stated:

قَدْ نَابَذَنِی مَنْ أذَلَّ عَبْدِیَ المُؤمِنَ.

One who humbles My believer servant has obviously begun a war with Me!(2)

Mocking people is certainly insulting, annoying, and belittling them. The Holy Qur’an has severely prohibited men and women who mock one

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 351, Bab man ‘aziya al-muslimin…, tradition 2.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 351, Bab man ‘aziya al-muslimin…, tradition 6.

another, and regarded them as oppressors particularly if they do not repent (49:11).

Breaking Promises

Making and keeping promises are two humane and ethical realities, which are emphasised in the Holy Qur’an and the tradition of the Prophet’s Household (as). Breaking the promises is considered as sin.

There is no difference whether the promise is made with Allah, the Prophet (as), the infallible Imams (as) or ordinary people; fulfilling any positive promise, which is in relation to worshipping Allah, serving people, commerce, or other rightful businesses, is a religious and ethical obligation, and breaking it is unlawful and doomed to Allah’s punishment.

وَأَوْفُوا بِعَهْدِ اللَّهِ إِذَا عَاهَدْتُمْ.

Fulfill Allah’s covenant, when you make covenant. (16:91)

الَّذِینَ یَنقُضُونَ عَهْدَ اللَّهِ مِنْ بَعْدِ مِیثَاقِهِ وَیَقْطَعُونَ مَا أَمَرَ اللَّهُ بِهِ أَنْ یُوصَلَ وَیُفْسِدُونَ فِی الأَرْضِ أُوْلَئِکَ هُمْ الْخَاسِرُونَ.

Those who break the covenant of Allah after ratifying it and sever that which Allah ordered to be joined, and make mischief in the earth: Those are they who are the losers. (2:27)

وَأَوْفُوا بِالْعَهْدِ إِنَّ الْعَهْدَ کَانَ مَسْئُولاً.

…And keep the covenant; surely the covenant shall be questioned of. (17:34)

یأَیُّهَا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا أَوْفُوا بِالْعُقُودِ.

O believers, fulfill your bonds… (5:1)

The Messenger of Allah (S) has stated:

ثَلاثٌ مَنْ کُنَّ فِیهِ کَانَ مُنافِقاً وإنْ صَامَ وَصَلَّی وَزَعَمَ أنَّهُ مُسْلِمٌ: مَن إذَا اؤتُمِنَ خَانَ، وإذَا حَدَّثَ کَذِبَ، وإذَا وَعَدَ أخْلَفَ.

Three attributes exist in a hypocrite, even if he prays and fasts and knows himself a Muslim; he betrays when he is trusted, he lies when he speaks, and he breaks his promise after making it.(1)

Also Imam Sadiq (as)

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 290, Bab fi Osul Al-Kufr…, tradition 8; Gonahan e Kabire the Greater Sins: 1/ 372.

said:

مَنْ عَامَلَ النَّاسَ وَلَمْ یَظْلِمْهُمْ، وَحَدَّثَهُمْ فَلَمْ یَکْذِبْهُمْ، وَوَعَدَهُمْ فَلَمْ یُخْلِفْهُمْ، فَهُوَ مِمَّنْ کَمُلَتْ مُرُوئَتُهُ وَحَرُمَتْ غِیْبَتُهُ وَظَهَرَ عَدْلُهُ وَوَجَبَتْ أُخُوَّتُهُ.

One who does not behave oppressively with others and does not tell lies to them and does not break his promises with them, is the one whose understanding is complete and whose justice is obvious, backbiting him is unlawful and he should be fraternized.(1)

Obvious Wrongdoing

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The Almighty Allah, in His Qur’an, has prohibited people from approaching sins whether openly or secretly. (6:151). But obvious sins display the extreme shamelessness of the sinner, and his boldness toward the law and the Islamic society.

Islam does not accept the pollution of the society by the sinners, and has determined an Islamic punishment for those who contaminate the Islamic nation. It is incumbent upon the conscious believers, especially the Islamic government officials, to prevent the shameless sinners from any wrongdoing in all ways possible, so that they may not poison others, especially young boys and girls, with their sins.

The obligation of ‘enjoining towards good’ (amri bi ma’ruf) in Islam is for eliminating the root of corruption and pollution in order to keep the society away from ethical lapses. If the main training centers, that is homes and schools foster the divine attribute of ‘modesty’ among the youth and make it a permanent one, people become immune to obvious and hidden sins.

Modesty, remembering Allah, and thinking of the sins’ are the highest preventive factors from sinning for the human being.

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 239, Bab Al-mu’min wa ‘alamatih…, tradition 28, with a little difference; and Gonahan e Kabire: 1/ 372.

(as):

اَلحَیَاءُ مِنَ الإیمَانِ، وَالإیمانُ فِی الجَنَّهِ.

Modesty comes from belief in Allah, and belief results in (entering) His Paradise.(1)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

إسْتَحْیوا مِنَ اللهِ حَقَّ الحَیَاءِ.

Be modest before Allah and observe the right of modesty!

“O Messenger of Allah! How should we do it?” he was asked. The Prophet answered:

فَإنْ کُنْتُمْ فَاعِلِینَ، فَلا یَبِیتَنَّ أحَدُکُم إلاَّ وَأجَلُهُ بَیْنَ عَیْنَیْهِ، وَلْیَحْفَظِ الرَّأسَ وَمَا حَوی، وَالبَطْنَ وَمَا وَعی، وَلْیَذْکُرِ القَبْرَ وَالبِلَی، وَمَنْ أرَادَ الآخِرَهَ فَلْیَدَعِ الحَیَاهَ الدُّنْیَا.

You should not sleep at night and get up in the morning, except that you remember your appointed time (death); so you should keep your heads and its organs, like eyes, ears, and tongue from wrongdoing, keep your bellies from eating unlawful food, and remember your body decays in your graves. One who wishes salvation in the Hereafter should leave the tempting stuff of the world.(2)

Someone told Prophet Muhammad (S): “Give me some advice!” The Prophet said:

إسْتَحیِ مِنَ اللهِ کَمَا تَسْتَحْیی مِنَ الرَّجُلِ الصَّالِحِ مِنْ قَوْمِکَ.

Be modest before Allah as you are modest before a decent gentleman from your tribe!(3)

Modesty of a Believing Lady
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Imam Al-Sajjad (as) has narrated: A man and his family were traveling by sea when their ship crashed and all the passengers on the ship drowned, except for the man’s wife. She took a remaining board of the ship until she reached an island.

On that island, there was an outlaw who had torn off all the veils of modesty. When he saw the woman, he asked her: “Are you a jinn or a human?” The woman answered:

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 329, Bab 81, tradition 1.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 333, Bab 81, tradition 9.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 333, Bab 81, tradition 20.

“A human.” So without saying a word, the bold outlaw forcefully took her as if he was his husband. The chaste woman got disturbed. The outlaw asked the reason. Pointing to the heaven, the woman answered: “I’m afraid.” The bold man asked: “Have you committed such a sin before?” The lady answered: “By Allah’s Glory not!” The man said: “Although you have not committed the sin and I’m forcing you to do so, yet You are still fear Allah this way. By Allah, I am the one who is more deserved to be disturbed and fearful of Allah than you.” Then he left immediately, went to his family, and always asked for repentance.

One day he crossed a monk in his way, while the sun was shining intensely on them. The monk told him: “Implore Allah to send a cloud for us to reduce the hotness of the sun!” The ex-brigand said: “I have done nothing worthy to dare ask Allah a request.” The monk said: “So I pray and you say amen!” Then the monk prayed and the man said amen. A cloud soon shadowed them. They walked under the cloud for a while until they reached a fork in their way. The monk continued one of the ways and the man chose the other. The cloud, too, continued shadowing the man!

Observing this, the monk told the man: “You are more deserved than me. Our prayer was accepted because of you. So tell me your story!” The man explained the

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story of that lady. The monk said: “Since you feared Allah your previous sins were forgiven. Watch out what you’ll do in the future!”(1)

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The insightful servants and the seekers of truth explaining about the phrase “My fetters have tied me down,” have stated:

Perhaps “my fetters” means the sins and especially major sins that restrict human beings and tie him down. The sins prevent one from worshipping and serving Allah, depriving him from His blessings. An evidence of this is an important tradition narrated from Amir al-Mu’minin, ‘Ali (as):

Someone told Imam ‘Ali (as): “I used to perform the night prayers and Nafilas, but I can no longer do so.” Imam (as) said:

أنْتَ رَجُلٌ قَدْ قَیَّدَتْکَ ذُنُوبُکَ.

You are a person, whose sins have become his fetters, tying him down and preventing him from night worshipping.(2)

There is another possibility that “the fetters” are useless entertainments and activities, which prevent human from paying attention to more important real purposes of life. In a tradition from the

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/69, Bab Al-khawf wa Al-raja’, tradition 8.
2- Al-Kafi: 3/ 450, Bab Salat Al-Nawafil, tradition 34.

Messenger of Allah (S), this is mentioned:

مِنْ حُسْنِ إسْلاَمِ المَرْءِ تَرْکُهُ مَا لاَ یَعْنِیهِ.

One of the good things a Muslim observes is the abandoning of those activities that are of no use to him.(1)

وَحَبَسَنی عَنْ نَفْعی بُعْدُ أَمَلی

O Allah! My high hopes have held me back from my gain.

Scattering Lies

The Messenger of Allah (S), Imam Sadiq (as) and Imam al-Ridha (as) have considered lying as a major sin, and the most obscene of them.(2)

Among the most obscene kinds of lying is fabricating the statements of Allah, the prophets, the infallible Imams and the heavenly Books, which misguides many people.

Throughout history, the disbelieving leaders fabricated facts and told lies under the name of science and philosophy to prevent the masses from favoring the right religion, the prophets, and the Hereafter. These hypocrites, fabricators, and tempters forged issues and led people astray. They presented the erroneous things as right, and the true facts as untrue.

The disbelievers denied the heavenly Books that were revealed by Allah for guiding mankind. They opposed Allah’s signs in various ways, and inspired people that nothing is descended from Allah!(3)

These oppressors accused the truthful prophets of lying and charged those wise men with magic. They also called prophets, who were unique in mental capability, insane!

The disbelievers resorted to any type of crime and offence and even fabricated the divine Books of Torah and the Bible to make them in accord with their own disbelief. They dared to alter the divine verses and did not fear the outcome of their deeds and Allah’s doomed punishment. If they could, they would have fabricated the Holy Qur’an, too, but the Absolute Guardian of the world protected it.

The

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 1/ 150, Bab 4, ‘Alamat Al-’Aql.
2- The traditions about lying are mentioned in detail in these books: Al-Kafi: 2/ 338; Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 12/243, Bab 138; Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 9/ 83, Bab 120…, Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 232, Bab 114.
3- Yasin 36: 15.

hypocrites in the age of the infallible Imams intensively propagated false traditions to foster the oppressive ruling of the Umayyad and the Abbasids, to keep the Prophet’s Household away from the concerned areas, and to deprive people from the divine knowledge of infallible Imams who were the true successors of the Prophet (S). They fabricated nearly a million false traditions, attributing them to the great Prophet of Islam (S), and included them in Islamic books to introduce them to the nation as the Islamic culture. If it was not for the scientific revolution of the Imams (as), especially Imam al-Baqir and Imam Sadiq (as) together with their students, and the attempts by the Shi’a scholars and jurisprudents to this day, we would have been blinded by some of those traditions fabricated by the agents of the Umayyad and Abbasids. The jurisprudents did this using the tools taught by Imams (as) which enabled them to distinguish between the right from wrong, and hence the true Islam was saved by the Imams and the efforts of the Shi’a scientists. This way Allah’s message was completed on mankind until the Hereafter and no one can claim that she/he has been away from Mohammad’s religion, on the Day of Resurrection.

All over the world, these hypocrite fabricators have presented numerous lies in different scientific, political, material, and spiritual arenas in the past two decades. They imposed the fabricated materials on the societies and thus deceived individuals, leading them away from reality. The deceiving mottos like

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“Religion is the nations’ opium.” “Government deserves the civilized, victorious, and the conquer of humans.” “Knowledge is the key for solving all problems.” “Democracy and freedom”, “liberal civil society”, “ruling of people on people” made many people communist and irreligious, instead of accepting Allah’s rule on His people via His pious servants. The Muslim believers got entangled among disbelievers and were mocked by them. That’s why the holy Qur’an calls out:

…فَنَجْعَلْ لَعْنَهَ اللَّهِ عَلَی الْکَاذِبِینَ.

So invoke the curse of Allah upon those who lie. (3:61)

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لا یَهْدِی مَنْ هُوَ کَاذِبٌ کَفَّارٌ.

Surely Allah guides not him who is a liar, unthankful. (39:3)

The great Messenger of Allah (S) has thus been right in his very important traditions that is as follows:

ألاَ أُنَبِّؤُکُمْ بِأکْبَرِ الکَبَائِرِ؟ الإشْرَاکُ بِاللهِ، وَعُقُوقُ الوَالِدَیْنِ... ألاَ وَقَوْلُ الزُّورِ.

Do you want me to inform you of the biggest major sin? Polytheism, unkindness toward parents, (and he sat upright and continued) and beware of untrue speech.(1)

He also said:

شَرُّ الرِّوَایَهِ رِوَایَهُ الکَذِبِ.

The worst speech is lying.(2)

It is also narrated from him:

أقَلُّ النَّاسِ مُرُوؤَهً مَنْ کَانَ کَاذِباً.

A liar has the least humanity.(3)

Furthermore, the Prophet (S) was asked: “Is there any fearful believer?” He agreed. “Is there any stingy believer?” He approved it again. “Is there any believer who is a liar?” He rejected it.(4)

Amir al-Mu’minin, Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

لاَ یَجِدُ عَبْدٌ طَعْمَ الإیمَانِ حَتَّی یَتْرُکَ الکَذِبَ هَزْلَهُ وَجِدَّهُ.

Man does not taste the sweetness of belief unless he avoids lying, either seriously or jokingly.(5)

He also said:

لا سُوءَ أسْوَأُ مِنَ الکَذِبِ.

Lying is the worst

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1- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 17/ 416, bab 6, tradition 21714.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 259, Bab 114, tradition 25.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 259, Bab 114, tradition 21.
4- Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 262, Bab 114, tradition 40.
5- Al-Kafi: 2/ 340, tradition 11; Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 249, bab 114, tradition 14.

obscenity.(1)

Another valuable statement of him reads:

اَلصِّدْقُ أمَانَهٌ وَالکَذِبُ خِیَانَهٌ.

Honesty is, in fact, loyalty and lying is betrayal.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) has stated:

إنَّ الکَذِبَ هُوَ خَرابُ الإیمَانِ.

The Exalted Allah has set some locks for the sins; the key to these locks is wine, and even worst than wine is lying.(3)

Prophet Moses (as) asked Allah: “Which of Your servants is the most well-behaved?” Allah replied: “One whose tongue does not tell lies, whose heart does not go astray, and one who does not do adultery.”(4)

Islamic sciences teach us that the liar is a transgressor, a hypocrite and dishonored. The angels curse the liar. The liar has a foul mouth. The liar is a disbeliever. The liar is subjected to Allah’s wrath and curse. The liar is a sinner who is deprived of Allah’s guidance and does not deserve companionship. The liar is a human in appearance, but an unclean animal, indeed!

Judging in contrast to Allah’s Rules

Another sin, which descends adversities, is passing a judgment in contrast to the divine rules. If a judge is aware of Allah’s rule, but denies it while judging and issues a verdict based on irreligious rules, he is, according to the holy Qur’an, a transgressor, an oppressor, and a disbeliever(5). He is a disbeliever because he has denied Allah’s rule. He is an oppressor since he has deprived a human from his rights. And he is a transgressor for he is away from religion and humanity due to his unfair and unjust verdict. Imam Sadiq (as) has stated:

مَنْ حَکَمَ بَیْنَ اثْنَیْنِ بِغَیْرِ حُکْمِ

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1- Tawhid Saduq: 72, Bab Al-Tawhid wa nafyi Al-tashbih.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 261, Bab 114, tradition 37.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 261, Bab 114, tradition 38.
4- Jami’ Al-Akhbar: 173.
5- Al-Ma’ida 5: 44, 45,47.

اللهِ فَقَدْ کَفَرَ بِاللهِ.

One who issues an unfair verdict even on two drachmas has become a blasphemer.(1)

Not Paying Zakat

According to the Qur’anic verses and the traditions, paying zakat is obligatory for grains, quadrupeds, gold, and silver and abstinence from paying it is a major sin. In most Qur’anic verses about prayer, there is an immediate reference to zakat, too. Mentioning zakat after prayer shows its importance. One who leaves paying zakat, like the shunner of prayer and hajj, is a blasphemer.

In a very important tradition, Imam Sadiq (as) has mentioned the philosophy of zakat briefly, saying: Zakat has become obligatory for assessing the rich and serving the poor. If all the people paid zakat, there would be no poor Muslims, and they would become fortunate by the rights that Allah has set for them. The people wouldn’t get poor, hungry, or needy except for the refraining of the rich from paying their due rights. Those who don’t pay Allah’s portion of their wealth do not deserve His Mercy. By Allah that no wealth is wasted whether in the desert or the sea, unless the zakat is paid on it.(2)

When Fatima Al-Zahra (as) gave a speech in her father’s mosque and brilliantly criticized the government of her age using Qur’anic verses and the Prophet’s traditions, she the told people:

فَجَعَلَ الإیمَانَ تَطْهِیراً لَکُمْ مِنَ الشِّرْکِ، وَالصَّلاهَ تَنْزِیهاً لَکُمْ عَنِ الکِبَرِ، وَالزَّکَاهَ تَزْکِیَهً لأنْفُسِکُمْ.

Allah obliged belief for you to purify you of the pollution of disbelief, He obliged prayer to save you from pride, and

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1- Gonahan e kabire: 2/365.
2- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 9/ 12, bab 1, tradition 11392.

zakat to purify you of stinginess.(1)

One day, Imam al-Ridha (as) told his servant: “Have you granted anything for Allah today?” The servant gave a negative answer. Imam (as) said: “So how would Allah recompense us?”(2)

Shortening the Measures

According to the Holy Qur’an and the traditions of the Prophet (S) and his Household (as), fraud in dealing with people and shortening the measure are unlawful and major sins.

One chapter, from one hundred and fourteen chapters of the Holy Qur’an, is dedicated to this issue. The first few verses of this chapter talk about this major sin, betrayal and the chastisement for it:

وَیْلٌ لِلْمُطَفِّفِینَ الَّذِینَ إِذَا اکْتَالُوا عَلَی النَّاسِ یَسْتَوْفُونَ وَإِذَا کَالُوهُمْ أَوْ وَزَنُوهُمْ یُخْسِرُونَ أَلا یَظُنُّ أُولَئِکَ أَنَّهُمْ مَبْعُوثُونَ لِیَوْمٍ عَظِیمٍ یَوْمَ یَقُومُ النَّاسُ لِرَبِّ الْعَالَمِینَ کَلاَّ إِنَّ کِتَابَ الفُجَّارِ لَفِی سِجِّینٍ.

Woe to those that deal in fraud, who, when they measure against the people, take full measure. But, when they measure for them or weigh for them, do skimp. Do those not think that they shall be raised up unto a mighty day, a day when mankind shall stand before the Lord of all Beings? No indeed; the Book of the libertines is in Sijjin.(83: 1-7)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

إنَّ المُطَفِّفَ یُرْمَی یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ فِی قَعْرِ جَهَنَّمَ بَیْنَ جَبَلَیْنِ مِنْ نَارٍ، فَیُقَالُ لَهُ: زِنْهُمَا. فَیَبْقَی فِی ذَلِکَ أبَداً.

One who shortens the measures in dealing with people would be taken to the bottom of the hell, in the Hereafter, and placed between two fire mountains. He is

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 29/223, tradition 8.
2- Gonahan-e Kabire: 2/ 223.

then told to weigh the mountains, and he would do so forever.(1)

The great exegesis book “Minhaj al-Sadiqin” explains about the verses of the “Mutaffifin” chapter and narrates an important tradition from the Prophet (S). The Prophet (S) said: “There are five consequences for five deeds.” People asked: “O Messenger of Allah! What are they?” He replied: “When people broke their promises, Allah dominated their enemies on them. When people did adultery, Allah spread death amongst them. When people lied and judged against Allah’s rule, they got increasingly unfortunate. And when people refrained from paying zakat, they had no rain. And when they shortened the measures, they got deprived of plants and entangled in famine.”

اللَّهُمَ اغْفِرْ لِیَ الذُّنُوبَ الَّتِی تُغیِّرُ النِّعَمَ

O Allah! Forgive me the sins which alter the blessings!

Sins Altering Blessings

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Committing some sins alter Allah’s Blessings for human being, and replace them with calamities and adversities. These sins, as stated by Imam Al-Sajjad (as) are: 1. Oppressing people, 2. Losing good habits, 3. Abandoning good deed, 4. Being ungrateful, 5. Abandoning gratefulness.

Oppressing People

Oppressing people is an atrocious and satanic sin. Oppression, even as much as a grain, is an obscene deed. Be it as little as the grain, this deed would be punished in the Hereafter, too:

وَإِنْ کَانَ مِثْقَالَ حَبَّهٍ مِنْ خَرْدَلٍ أَتَیْنَا بِهَا وَکَفَی بِنَا حَاسِبِینَ.

And if there be no more than the weight of a mustard seed We will bring it to account: and enough are We to take account. (21:47)

Losing the Good Habits

The good habits that humans are inclined to, by Allah’s blessings,

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1- Gonahan-e kabire: 1/418.

are really important and valuable and make humans subjected to Allah’s Mercy. Humans should be careful and should guard these good habits.

After attaining the good habits like gaining knowledge, showing humility, having patience, serving Allah’s servants and so on, man is always subjected to dangers and should attempt to maintain his good habits. If a human is careless about maintaining his good habits, to the extent that they are lost, he has then committed a sin, and should, surely, expect the alteration of Allah’s blessings in his life.

Abandoning good deeds

Beneficence and doing good to the people are signs of humanity and belief. According to the Qur’anic verses, the good-doers are loved by the Almighty.

وَاللَّهُ یُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِینَ.

…Allah loves those who do good. (3:134)

People should not abandon their beneficence toward others in any situation. Doing good to the people is, in fact, a worship to Allah. It makes Allah content and its reward is great.

As a matter of fact, abandoning beneficence is a sin, and results in deprivation from good manners and etiquettes, Allah’s special Mercy, and countless rewards.

Ungratefulness

Being ungrateful towards Allah is a sin, which brings about severe chastisement, in the words of Holy Qur’an:

وَلَئِنْ کَفَرْتُمْ إِنَّ عَذَابِی لَشَدِیدٌ.

… but if you are thankless, My chastisement is surely terrible. (14:7)

The worst kind of ungratefulness is wasting Allah’s blessings for committing sins and unsuitable wishes.

Abandoning Gratefulness

Being thankful for the blessings Allah has granted to a human so that he may develop physically and mentally is a necessity, and abandoning it is against humanity and justice.

Gratitude

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is indeed acknowledging the Provider and His Blessings together with spending the blessings in the way which He Himself has ordered.

Gratitude for the blessing of being provided with a heart is adorning it with the belief and faith in Allah, the Prophets, the Imams, the Holy Qur’an, and the Day of Resurrection.

Gratitude for the blessing of the eyes is looking at the nature to discover Allah’s Might, using them for gaining knowledge, reciting Qur’an, as well as keeping them from unlawful scenes.

Gratitude for the blessing of the ears is hearing the truth, and keeping them from hearing falsehood, unlawful music and sounds, backbiting, and slander.

Being thankful for the blessing of the tongue is through uttering fine speech, answering fine questions, guiding the misled, reciting Qur’an and prayer, and keeping the tongue from lying, backbiting, slander, ungrounded rumors, and belittling Allah’s servants.

Being thankful for the blessing of the stomach is eating lawful food, and avoiding unlawful stuff.

For being thankful for the blessing of lust, it should be used in lawful marriage and prevented from unlawful relationships.

For being thankful for the blessing of feet, it should be used in going to the mosques and circles knowledge, visiting relatives and religious brothers, and going to solve people’s problems.

Gratitude for the blessing of wealth is spending it for one’s wife and children, poor relatives, charity, zakat, khums(1) and giving of alms. Evading any of these examples of thankfulness is a sin, which alters Allah’s blessings into chastisement and calamity.

اللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِیَ الذُّنُوبَ الَّتِی تَحْبِسُ

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1- Khums is statutory one-fifth Islamic levy on certain qualifying amounts/things.

الدُّعَاءَ

O Allah! Forgive me the sins which hold back supplication!

Factors that Hinder the Acceptance of Supplications

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Imam Al-Sajjad (as) considers seven sins which prevent the acceptance of supplications by the Almighty: 1. Bad intentions, 2. Hidden vices, 3. Hypocrisy with religious brothers, 4. Doubtfulness about acceptance of supplications, 5. Postponing the prayers, 6. Leaving goodness and alms giving, which make people close to Allah, 7. Speaking rudely with people and using obscene words.(1)

Bad Intention

Intention means one’s decision and goal. Islam demands people to have good intention towards all humans and even animals and other entities, and to wish for goodness, prosperity, and health for everyone. Islam recommends humans to do good to others and to solve their problems, as much as possible. Good intentions and wishes for others is so valuable that it is rewarded! It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as):

A poor Muslim asks Allah: ‘O Lord! Grant me wealth to do goodness and alms giving so and so!’ If Allah knows his intention as truthful, He gives that servant as much reward as if he had practiced all his good intentions, since Allah is Generous!(2)

It is also narrated: “A hungry man crossed a sand hill and thought to himself: ‘If these sand grains were food, I would have divided them among people.’ Allah revealed to the prophet of that time: ‘Tell the man that Allah has accepted his good intention for alms giving, and rewarded him as if he had granted the food equivalent to that of the sand grains, to the people.’”(3)

One should avoid having

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1- Ma’ani Al-Akhbar: 269.
2- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 106, Kitab Al-niyyat wa Al-Sidq wa Al-Ikhlas.
3- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 104, Kitab Al-niyyat wa Al-Sidq wa Al-Ikhlas

bad intentions towards other humans and beings, because corrupted intentions makes the heart rigid and leads to the committing sins and oppressing Allah’s servants.

Hidden Vices

Vices such as mistrust, hatred, self-admiration, negligence, insolence, arrogance, stinginess, greed, jealousy, and loving Allah’s enemies are harmful sins that avoid the acceptance of prayers, in addition to worldly and heavenly chastisement.

Imam al-Baqir (as) says about the hypocrites:

بِئْسَ العَبْدُ عَبْدٌ هُمَزَهٌ لُمَزَهٌ یُقْبِلُ بِوَجْهٍ وَیُدْبِرُ بِآخَرَ.

A bad servant of Allah is one who is caviler and slanderer; on one side, he comes to befriend, on the other hand, he begins enmity.(1)

Mistrust

Being suspicious of Allah, His friends, and the Muslims is an obscene, although hidden sin, which is recorded in the book of deeds, accounted for on the Day of Resurrection, and chastised severely. The exception to this are the one who can repent in this world.

یَا أَیُّهَا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا اجْتَنِبُوا کَثِیرًا مِنْ الظَّنِّ إِنَّ بَعْضَ الظَّنِّ إِثْمٌ.

O you who believe: Avoid suspicion as much (as possible): for suspicion in some cases is a sin. (49:12)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

وَاللهِ الَّذِی لاَ إلَهَ إلاَّ هُوَ، مَا أُعْطِیَ مُؤمِنٌ خَیْرَ الدُّنْیَا وَالآخِرَهِ إلاَّ بِحُسْنِ ظَنِّهِ بِاللهِ وَرَجَائِهِ لَهُ وَحُسْنِ خُلُقِهِ وَالکَفِّ عَن اِغْتِیَابِ المُؤمِنِینَ، وَاللهِ الَّذی لا إلَهَ إلاَّ هُوَ لا یُعَذِّبُ اللهُ مُؤمِناً بَعْدَ التَّوْبَهِ وَالاسْتِغْفَارِ إلاَّ بِسُوءِ ظَنِّهِ بِاللهِ وَتَقْصیرٍ مِنْ رَجَائِهِ للهِ وَسُوُءِ خُلُقِهِ وَاغْتِیَابِهِ المُؤمِنِینَ، وَاللهِ الَّذی لا إلَهَ إلاَّ هُوَ، لا یَحْسُنُ ظَنُّ عَبْدٍ مُؤمنٍ بِاللهِ إلاَّ کَانَ اللهُ عِنْدَ ظَنِّ عَبْدِهِ المُؤمِنِ، لأنَّ اللهَ کَریمٌ بِیَدِهِ الخَیْراتُ، یَسْتَحْیی أنْ یَکُونَ عَبْدُهُ المُؤمِنُ

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1- Thawab Al-’a’mal: 269, ‘Iqab man kana zawajhayn…; Qalbi Salim: 61.

قَدْ أحْسَنَ بِهِ الظَّنَّ وَالرَّجَاءَ ثُمَّ یُخْلِفُ ظَنَّهُ وَرَجاءَهُ، فَأحْسِنُوا بِاللهِ الظَّنَّ وَارْغَبُوا إلَیْهِ.

I swear by God who has no partners that no good of this world or the Hereafter has been granted to any believer, except due to his good opinion about God, his good behavior, and his avoidance of gossiping and slandering. And I swear by God who has no partners that God will not punish anyone after repentance and seeking forgiveness except due to his bad opinion about God, insufficient hope in God, bad behavior, and gossiping about believers. I swear by God who has no partners that there are no believers who have a good opinion about God and receive anything less than they expect from Him. This is so since God is Benevolent and has authority over all that is good, and is ashamed is one of his servants have a good opinion about Him and He acts on the contrary. Therefore have a good opinion about God and be inclined to Him.(1)

A believer who has the virtues of belief, good morality and behavior should be hopeful of Allah’s Mercy and avoid any doubts about Him.

The sinners can repent and compensate for their sins. Since the Almighty has promised to forgive the sinners for their repentance, in His Book, the sinners should not be doubtful about the acceptance of their repentance by Allah. Instead, they should wholeheartedly believe in Allah’s Blessing toward them to become subjected to His Mercy.

The invaluable narrator of traditions, Allama Majlisi,

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1- Mishkat al-Anwar, 98.

explains about the tradition of optimism and pessimism about Allah, saying: “One should be optimistic about Allah’s forgiveness when he repents. One should know that when he turns to Allah, He would accept him. When he prays rightly he should be aware that Allah would answer his prayer. When he asks Allah to help him, he should believe that Allah would suffice him. And when he does something for Allah he should know that Allah would accept his deed. This is optimism, and anyone who is pessimistic about Allah has done a major sin, which would bring about chastisement.(1)

A Muslim believer should interpret other Muslims’ conducts optimistically, however negative they may seem. He has no right to be doubtful about others’ behaviors. For instance, if one sees a Muslim in a sinful circle where unlawful deeds like gambling and wine exist, he is not allowed to assume that the believer is involved in the wrongdoing. Rather, as recommended by the Prophet (S) and his household (as), he should calm down and say to himself: “How fortunate is my believer brother! Allah has blessed him to be present in this circle in order to enjoin good and forbid evil and save the wrongdoers. I wish I had the opportunity to be in his place so that I could cure the patients of sin and release the captives of Satan, hence I, too, could receive Allah’s reward.”

Hatred

Every Muslim should have affection towards other humans, except for those that Allah permits otherwise. One’s

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 67/ 365, Bab 59, under tradition 14.

hatred towards other people deprives him from strengthening ties of kinship, beneficence, and charity. Hatred towards people makes one’s heart, mind, and thought rigid and dark, and removes Allah’s Mercy.

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

مَا کَادَ جِبْرَئیلُ یَأتِینی إلاَّ قَالَ: یَا مُحَمَّدُ، إتَّقِ شَحْنَاءَ الرِّجَالِ وَعَداوَتَهُمْ.

Gabriel didn’t descend to me, except that he advised me not to feel hatred for other people.(1)

Also Amir al-Mu’minin (as) said:

رَأسُ الجَهْلِ مُعَادَاهُ النَّاسِ.

The core of foolishness is hatred for people.(2)

He also said:

مُعَادَاهُ الرِّجَالِ مِنْ شِیَمِ الجُهَّالِ.

Hating people is the manner of the foolish.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

إیَّاکَ وَعَداوَهَ الرِّجَالِ فَإنَّها تُورِثُ المَعَرَّهَ وَتُبْدِی العَوْرَهَ.

Avoid enmity with people; because it leads to demolition and manifests mistakes.(4)

Self-Admiration

Admiring oneself or pride in one’s own deeds is an obscene sin. Mankind is but a servant of Allah; his life and death is in His hands, his sustenance is from Allah, his worship is a blessing from Allah, and every good deed he does is by Allah’s wish. Therefore, human should not take pride in what he does. Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَنْ دَخَلَهُ العُجْبُ هَلَکَ.

Anyone who admires himself would be annihilated.(5)

He also narrated: “A wise man came to a pious servant of Allah and told him: ‘How do you pray?’ The pious answered: ‘How dare you ask this question from someone like me? I worshipped Allah such and such, from the start.’ The questioner asked: ‘How do you cry?’ He answered: ‘I cry to such an extent that my tears flow.’ The wise man said: ‘You’d better laugh while you

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1- Al-Kafi, 2/ 301, Bab al-mira’ wa al-khosuma…, tradition 5.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 461, tradition 10570; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 874, Al-Jahl, tradition 2859.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 462, tradition 10578; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3508, Al-’Idawa, tradition 12030.
4- ‘Ikhtisas: 230; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3508, Al-’Idawa, tradition 12037.
5- Al-Kafi: 2/ 313, Bab Al-’Ujb, tradition 2.

are afraid of Allah and not cry while you admire yourself. In fact, Allah would not accept the deeds of anyone who is proud of himself.’”(1)

The Messenger of Allah (as) stated: “Almighty Allah told Prophet David (as): ‘O David! Give good tidings to the sinners and warn the pious! David asked Allah: ‘Why should I do so?’ The Almighty answered: ‘Tell the sinners that I am the Forgiver and would accept their repentance. And warn the righteous of taking pride in their deeds, because if I account for people’s deeds no one would be saved from My chastisement.’”(2)

Hypocrisy

Hypocrisy in worship and good deeds in order gain people’s attention is unlawful and subjected to Allah’s wrath.

The Holy Qur’an has announced hatred toward some of those who pray hypocritically, saying:

فَوَیْلٌ لِلْمُصَلِّینَ (4) الَّذِینَ هُمْ عَنْ صَلَاتِهِمْ سَاهُونَ (5) الَّذِینَ هُمْ یُرَاءُونَ (6) وَیَمْنَعُونَ الْمَاعُونَ (7).

So woe to the praying ones who are unmindful of their prayers; who do good to be seen and withhold the necessaries of life. (107:4-7)

Someone asked the Messenger of Allah (S): “How can we reach salvation?” The Prophet (S) replied: “You should avoid saying prayers for attracting people’s attention.”(3)

It is narrated that when someone is killed in holy war, another gives his wealth away for Allah, and a third one recites Qur’an, Allah calls on them: ‘You lied during the holy war for you wanted others to say that you were brave. You lied in your alms giving for you wanted people to think you were very generous.

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 313, Bab Al-’Ujb, tradition 5.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 314, Bab Al-’Ujb, tradition 8.
3- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 6/ 139-141, Kitab zum al-jah wa al-ria’.

And you lied in reciting the Qur’an for you wanted to be known by others as a reader of Qur’an.’ The Prophet (S) then said: ‘Such people are not rewarded and their hypocrisy wipes away their deeds.’”(1)

A tradition narrated from the Prophet of Islam (S) reads:

إنَّ اللهَ تَعَالَی یَقُولُ لِلمَلائِکَهِ: إنَّ هَذا لَْم یُرِدْنِی بِعَمَلِهِ، فَاجْعَلُوهُ فِی سِجِّین.

The Glorious Allah tells the angels: ‘This person has not done his deeds for Me, so take him to the Hell.’(2)

The Messenger of Allah (S) also stated:

إنَّ أخْوَفَ مَا أخَافُ عَلَیْکُم الشِّرْکُ الأصْغَرُ... الرِّیَاءُ.

The scariest thing for you is the minor idolatry… showing off!(3)

The Messenger of Allah (S) further said:

إنَّ اللهَ لا یَقْبَلُ عَمَلاً فِیهِ ذَرَّهٌ مِنْ رِیاءٍ.

Allah would not accept any deed in which there is even a tinge of showing off.(4)

Shaddad Ibn Aws says: “I saw the Prophet (S) crying and asked him the reason. He said: ‘I am scared of my nation’s hypocrisy. They would not worship stone idols, the sun, or the moon, but they are hypocrites in what they do.’”(5)

Arrogance

Being arrogant before the truth, the giver of advice, the people, Allah’s rules, or His Prophets is a satanic attitude.

Satan got deprived of Allah’s Mercy, for his arrogance before Him and was thus cast out, cursed, and doomed to chastisement. An arrogant is so unfortunate that he is away from Allah’s Mercy.

إِنَّهُ لا یُحِبُّ الْمُسْتَکْبِرِینَ.

… verily He loveth not the arrogant. (16:23)

It suffices for an arrogant that the punishment which the Qur’an has determined, is for him to dwell

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 6/ 139-141, Kitab zum al-jah wa al-ria’.
2- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 6/ 139-141, Kitab zum al-jah wa al-ria’.
3- Ibid.
4- Ibid.
5- Ibid.

in the Inferno:

فَلَبِئْسَ مَثْوَی الْمُتَکَبِّرِینَ.

Woeful indeed will be the lodging of the arrogant. (16:29)

Considering oneself better than others and as the center of attraction, together with arrogance against Allah’s rules, His worship, and the reality is a major sin which brings about Allah’s doomed punishment.

Boasting about one’s knowledge, deeds, worship, ancestry, beauty, wealth, strength, or plentiful friend is an obscene act.

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

اَلعِزُّ رِدَاءُ اللهِ وَالکِبْرُ إزَارُهُ، فَمَنْ تَنَاوَلَ شَیئاً مِنْهُ أکَبَّهُ اللهُ فِی جَهَنَّمَ.

Glory, Dignity, and Greatness belong to Allah; anyone who considers these attributes as belonging to himself will be placed in Hell.(1)

Imam al-Baqir (as) and Imam Sadiq (as) said:

لا یَدْخُلُ الجَنَّهَ مَنْ فِی قَلْبِهِ مِثْقَالُ ذَرَّهٍ مِنْ کِبْرٍ.

One who has even a tinge of arrogance in his heart would not enter Paradise.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) also stated:

إنَّ فی جَهَنَّمَ لَوادِیاً لِلمُتَکَبِّرِینَ یُقالُ لَهُ سَقَرُ، شَکَی إلَی اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ شِدَّهَ حَرِّهِ وَسَألَهُ أنْ یَأذَنَ لَهُ أنْ یَتَنَفَّسَ، فَتَنَفَّسَ فَأَحْرَقَ جَهَنَّمَ.

In the Inferno, surely there is a place for the arrogant called ‘Saqar’. It complaints about its extreme hotness to Allah and asks permission for breathing; it burns the whole inferno as it breathes.(3)

‘Abd Al-A’la says: “I asked Imam Sadiq (as): ‘What is arrogance?’ He stated:

أعْظَمُ الکِبْرِ أنْ تُسَفِّهَ الحَقَّ.

‘The highest degree of arrogance is belittling the truth and other people.’

I asked again: ‘How does one belittle the truth?’ Imam (as) answered:

یَجْهَلُ الحَقَّ وَیَطْعَنُ عَلَی أهْلِهِ.

‘Belittling the truth is misunderstanding it and reproaching those who support it.’(4)

Negligence

When humans are neglectful of the realities they are easily deluded by

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 213, Bab 130, tradition 3.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 310, Bab Al-Kibr, tradition 6.
3- Al-Kafi: 2/ 310, Bab Al-Kibr, tradition 10.
4- Al-Kafi: 2/ 311, Bab Al-Kibr, tradition 12.

material issues, which is an obscene and dangerous deed.

Those who are deceived by the worldly wealth deny the fact that this world is transitory; that one day they would be placed in graves, their body be devoured by insects, their soul would be entangled by their wrongdoing in the purgatory and chastised in the Hereafter. These people consider this world as concrete and the Hereafter as abstract; they stick to the passing world and forget about the permanent one; they believe in the worldly pleasures and doubt about the heavenly rewards. They don’t accept Allah’s promise revealed to one hundred and twenty four thousand prophets(as) and the infallible Imams (as). They don’t want to be believers nor avoid the sins and do virtues.

The negligent individuals are heedless of the Qur’anic fact that the Hereafter is the consequence of apparent and hidden acts of this world. As the Prophet of Islam (S) states, this world is a place of action, the outcome of which is granted in the other world. This world and the other world are therefore not separate entities; the hereafter is, in other words, a reflection of this world. But alas the ignorant do not understand.

The believers, who are negligent of the Qur’anic verses, are deluded by their conception of Allah’s Mercy. They think that since Allah’s blessings and His Mercy are expanded for all beings there is no need to worship and serve Allah and no need to take trouble in avoiding sins. They think that their

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sins are very little in proportion to Allah’s Forgiveness and Mercy, and think: ‘we would be saved due to our belief in Allah and affection to His prophets and the infallible Imams; our sins would not lead us away from Allah’s Mercy and bring about His punishment’. These individuals are heedless and do not know that Satan deceives people with these apparent ideas.

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

اَلکَیِّسُ مَنْ دَانَ نَفْسَهُ وَعَمِلَ لِمَا بَعْدَ المَوْتِ. وَالأحْمَقُ مَنْ أتْبَعَ نَفْسَهُ هَواهَا وَتَمَنَّی عَلَی اللهِ.

A smart person is the one who opposes his carnal soul, and do well for his Hereafter. A foolish person is the one that follows his carnal soul and foolishly hopes Allah’s Mercy.(1)

Such people are negligent that the Generous Allah whose Mercy embraces all things, has promised to severely chastise habitual and arrogant sinners, and those who have no good deeds. Allah has given good tidings to the righteous and brave Muslims that only they are subjected to Allah’s Mercy.

إِنَّ الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا وَالَّذِینَ هَاجَرُوا وَجَاهَدُوا فِی سَبِیلِ اللَّهِ أُوْلَئِکَ یَرْجُونَ رَحْمَهَ اللَّهِ.

Those who believe, and those who emigrate (to escape the persecution) and strive in the way of Allah, these have hope of Allah’s Mercy. (2:218)

Having hope of Allah’s Mercy, together with being simultaneous engaged in wrongdoing and leaving one’s duties, is actually deluding oneself and is an erroneous hope.

Imam Sadiq (as) was said: “Some people are polluted with a variety of sins and they are still hopeful of Allah’s Mercy. They continue wrongdoing until their death.” He

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1- Majmu’e-ye Warram: 1/ 243, Bab Muhasibat Al-Nafs.

(as) answered:

هَؤُلاءِ قَوْمٌ یَتَرَجَّحُونَ فِی الأمَانِیِّ، کَذِبُوا، لَیْسُوا بِرَاجِینَ، مَنْ رَجَا شَیْئاً طَلَبَهُ وَمَنْ خَافَ مِِْن شَیءٍ هَرَبَ مِنْهُ.

These are people who have fluctuating wishes. They are not really hopeful. One who is hopeful follows his hope, and one who is afraid of something, escapes from it.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) says:

سُکْرُ الغَفْلَهِ وَالغُرُورِ أبْعَدُ إفَاقَهً مِنْ سُکْرِ الخُمُورِ.

Recovering from intoxication of negligence is much harder than recovering from intoxication of wine.(2)

He also said:

إنَّ مِنَ الغِرَّهِ بِاللهِ أنْ یُصِرَّ العَبْدُ عَلَی المَعْصِیَهِ وَیَتَمَنَّی عَلَی اللهِ المَغْفِرَهَ.

Deluding by Allah’s Mercy is insistence on committing sins and still hoping for Allah’s Forgiveness.(3)

The Messenger of Allah (S) told Ibn Mas’ud:

لاَ تَغْتَرَّنَّ بِاللهِ وَلا تَغْتَرَّنَّ بِصَلاحِکَ وَعِلْمِکَ وَعَمَلِکَ وَبِرِّکَ وَعِبَادَتِکَ.

Don’t get negligence of Allah and get deceived by your own worship, knowledge, and good deeds.(4)

Stinginess

It is so obscene that humans benefit from all the material and spiritual blessings that Allah has bestowed on them, yet some of them do not donate part of their wealth and give no charity.

Human wealth that is gained by legal means is a divine trust from which he is allowed to spend according to his dignity and needs. Allah has ordered one to give his additional possessions away to the poor and the unfortunate. The human himself as well as everything that he possesses are Allah’s belonging and every belonging should be spent by its owner’s permission. If the servant spends the wealth based on his own impulses, he should certainly expect the Owner’s punishment.

Excessive accumulation of wealth, which is possible

p: 115


1- Safinat Al-Bihar: 3/ 319, Fi Al-Khawf wa Al-Raja’.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 266, Zam Al-Ghifla, 5750; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4268, Al-Ghorur, Tradition 14831.
3- Majmu’I-yi Warram: 2/ 72; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4272, Al-Ghorur, tradition 14857.
4- Maarim Al-Akhlaq: 451, Al-Fas Al-Rabi’; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4272, Al-Ghorur, Tradition 14858.

only by stinginess and doing evil in business, is opposing Allah’s Will which is a major sin, and a cause for misfortune and hard heartedness. It also deprives human from Allah’s Mercy and brings about His chastisement in the Hereafter.

Meanness is an evil attribute and an obscene vice, which is criticized in the Holy Qur’an and the Prophet’s traditions. The Qur’anic verses and the traditions represent a stingy individual as an unthankful servant, who is doomed to punishment.

الَّذِینَ یَبْخَلُونَ وَیَأْمُرُونَ النَّاسَ بِالْبُخْلِ وَیَکْتُمُونَ مَا آتَاهُمْ اللَّهُ مِنْ فَضْلِهِ وَأَعْتَدْنَا لِلْکَافِرِینَ عَذَابًا مُهِینًا.

(Those) who hoard their wealth and enjoin avarice on others, and hide that which Allah has bestowed upon them of His bounty. For disbelievers, We prepare a shameful doom. (4:37)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

حُرِّمَتِ الجَنَّهُ عَلَی المَنَّانِ وَالبَخِیلِ وَالقَتَّاتِ.

The Paradise is forbidden for the taleteller, the stingy, and one who obliges for others.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) heard someone saying: “The fault of a stingy is more excusable than the oppressor’s.” He (as) told him:

کَذِبْتَ! إنَّ الظَّالِمَ یَتُوبُ وَیَسْتَغْفِرُ اللهَ وَیَرُدُّ الظُّلاَمَهَ عَلَی أهْلِهَا. وَالشَّحِیحُ إذَا شَحََّ مَنَعَ الزَّکَاهَ وَالصَّدَقَهَ وَصِلَهَ الرَّحِمِ وَإقْرَاءَ الضَّیْفِ وَالنَّفَقَهَ فِی سَبِیلِ اللهِ وَأبْوَابَ البِرِّ. وَحَرَامٌ عَلَی الجَنَّهِ أنْ یَدْخُلَهَا شَحِیحٌ.

You are wrong. Because an oppressor can repent, ask for Allah’s forgiveness, and return people’s material rights. But when someone shows meanness he avoids alms giving, charity, hosting guests, and spending in Allah’s way. Paradise is forbidden for the stingy.(2)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

خَصْلَتَانِ لا تَجْتَمِعَانِ فِی مُسْلِمٍ: البُخْلُ وَسُوءُ الخُلُقِ.

A Muslim does not

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1- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 9/ 452, Bab ‘Adam Al-Jawaz Al-Man…, tradition 12481.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 302, Bab 136, Tradition 13.

have two attributes; meanness and bad temper.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

إنْ کَانَ الخَلَفُ مِنَ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ حَقّاً، فَالبُخْلُ لِمَاذَا؟

If Allah truly substitutes for the property that is given away in His way, what is meanness for?(2)

Imam Musa Ibn Ja’far (as) said:

اَلبَخِیلُ مَنْ بَخِلَ بِمَا افْتَرَضَ اللهُ عَلَیْهِ.

A stingy is the one who is mean in doing what Allah has obliged him to do.(3)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

السَّخِیُّ قَریبٌ مِِنَ اللهِ، قَرِیبٌ مِن الجَنَّهِ، قَریبٌ مِنَ النَّاسِ، بَعِیدٌ مِنَ النَّارِ، وَالبَخیلُ بَعیدٌ مِنَ اللهِ، بَعیدٌ مِنَ الجَنَّهِ، بَعیدٌ مِنَ النَّاسِ، قَریبٌ مِنَ النَّارِ.

A generous person is close to Allah, close to the people, and to the Paradise. But a stingy one is away from Allah, the people, and the Paradise.

Greed

Intense desire for wealth or property and accumulating them more than one’s needs causes mental disorder for humans. It makes one neglect Allah’s rules and moral bonds, and hence lose his humanity. The greedy individuals burn people’s properties and rights as fire, and possess their wealth unlawfully.

Remembering Allah and His chastisement in the Hereafter, observing moral codes, loving other people, and observing their rights keeps one from being polluted with greed for material wealth.

Allah has prepared a full array of blessings for humans. He has set some methods for them to obtain their definite sustenance through working and activities; hence He has guaranteed their sustenance. No one dies except that he eats the last mouthful that Allah has set for him. What is the reason for such worldly greed then?

The Messenger

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 301, Bab 136, Tradition 9.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 300, Bab 136, Tradition 1.
3- Al-Kafi: 4/ 45, Al-Bukhl wa Al-Shuh, tradition 4.

of Allah (S) stated:

أغْنَی النَّاسِ مَنْ لَمْ یَکُنْ لِلحِرْصِ أسِیراً.

The most contented of the people is the one who is not a captive of greed.(1)

Also the Prophet (S) advised Imam ‘Ali (as):

یَا عَلِیُّ! أنْهَاکَ عَنْ ثَلاَثِ خِصَالٍ عِظَامٍ: الحَسَدُ وَالحِرْصُ وَالکَذِبُ.

I prohibit you from three obscene characteristics; jealousy, greed, and lying.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

لَمَّا هَبِطَ نُوحٌ عَلَیْهِ السَّلامُ مِنَ السَّفِینَهِ أتَاهُ إبْلِیسُ فَقَالَ لَهُ: مَا فِی الأرْضِ رَجُلٌ أعْظَمُ مِنَّهً عَلَیَّ مِنْکَ، دَعَوْتَ اللهَ عَلَی هَؤلاءِ الفُسَّاقِ فَأرَحْتَنِی مِنْهُمْ. ألاَ أُعَلِّمُکَ خِصْلَتَیْنِ: إیَّاکَ وَالحَسَدَ، فَهُوَ الَّذِی عَمِلَ بِی مَا عَمِلَ، وَإیَّاکَ وَالحِرْصَ فَهُوَ الَّذِی عَمِلَ بِآدَمَ مَا عَمِلَ.

When Noah (as) took off his ship, Satan came to him and said: ‘No one on the earth has done a greater favor for me than you; you asked chastisement for the wrongdoers from Allah and caused me comfort. I inform you of two characteristics; avoid envy that did what it did to me, and avoid greed that did what it did to Adam.’(3)

Prophet Muhammad (S) said:

A greedy person has seven major calamities: a thought that harms his body and has no use, a grief that is endless, a pain that accompanies him in his happiness and is not cured but with death, a fear that finally strikes him, a sadness that bitters his joy, a sin that brings about Allah’s punishment, except that He forgive him, a chastisement that he cannot avoid.(4)

Cupidity

Interest in what other people possess, wishing and asking for it, and stating that interest in a way that forces other

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1- Amali Saduq: 70/ 162, Bab 128, tradition 10.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 162, Bab 128, tradition 10.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 163, Bab 128, tradition 17.
4- Misbah Al-Shari’a: 22.

people to give away their property is regarded as ‘cupidity’ by the scholars.

The fourth Imam, Imam Al-Sajjad (as) said:

رَأیْتُ الخَیْرَ کُلَّهُ قَد اجْتَمَعَ فِی قَطْعِ الطَّمَعِ عَمَّا فِی أیْدِی النَّاسِ.

I see all goodness in avoiding cupidity for the wealth and position that others possess.(1)

Satan asked Imam Sadiq (as): ‘What fixes belief in a servant’s heart?’ Imam (as) answered: ‘Piety and chastity.’ He asked again: ‘What detaches a servant’s belief?’ Imam replied: ‘cupidity.’(2)

Imam Hadi (as), the tenth infallible Imam, stated:

الطَّمَعُ سَجِیَّهٌ سَیِّئَهٌ.

Cupidity is a very obscene quality.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

إذَا أرَدْتَ أنْ تَقَرَّ عَیْنُکَ وَتَنَالَ خَیْرَ الدُّنْیَا وَالآخِرَهِ فَاقْطَعِ الطَّمَعَ عَمَّا فِی أیْدِی النَّاسِ.

If you want to be happy and delighted and gain goodness in this world and the Last Day, do not long for what others have.(4)

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

مَنْ أرَادَ أنْ یَعِیشَ حُرّاً أیَّامَ حَیَاتِهِ فَلا یُسْکِنِ الطَّمَعَ قَلْبَهُ.

One who wants to live a free life should not place cupidity in his heart.(5)

Jealousy

One of the most obscene qualities of mankind is jealousy. Islamic scholars believe that jealousy is observing a blessing with someone and wish for its removal from them! Jealousy is, in fact, discontent with Allah’s wise fate in giving blessings to other people. Pride, self-admiration, longing for mastery, and stinginess are factors that cause jealousy in human heart.

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

إنَّ الحَسَدَ یَأکُلُ الإیمَانَ کَمَا تَأکُلُ النَّارُ الحَطَبَ.

Surely, jealousy removes belief as the fire burns wood.(6)

He also said:

آفَهُ الدِّینِ الحَسَدُ وَالعُجْبُ وَالفَخْرُ.

The plague for the belief is jealousy, self-admiration, and pride.(7)

Imam Sadiq has narrated:

The Prophet (S) has

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 171, Bab 128, tradition 10.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 171, Bab 128, tradition 12.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 69/ 199, Bab 105; Mizan al-Hikma: 7/ 3310, Al-Tama’, tradition 11188.
4- Khisal: 1/ 121, tradition 113; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3310, Al-Tama’, tradition 11197.
5- Majmu’I-yi Warram: 1/ 49, Bab Al-Tama’; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3312, Al-Tama’, tradition 11213.
6- Al-Kafi: 2/ 306, Bab Al-Hasad, tradition 2.
7- Al-Kafi: 2/ 307, Bab AL-Hasad, tradition 5.

sought refuge to Allah from six things: suspicion, disbelief, pride, wrath, oppression, and jealousy.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said as well:

Moses was praying and talking to Allah when he saw a man under the shade of Allah’s Empyrean. He called: ‘O Lord! Who is this man who has been shadowed by Your Highest Heaven?’ He was replied: ‘He is one of those who was not jealous of what Allah had bestowed upon others.’(2)

Loving Allah’s Enemies

Befriending Allah’s enemies is caused by an ill heart. One should love goodness and Allah’s friends, and hate wickedness and the wrongdoers. If someone acts vice versa then, he is ill hearted. He should cure his illness with the Qur’anic verses; otherwise he should expect its adverse consequences in this world and the Last World.

The holy Qur’an, the Prophet (S), and his disciples were hard to the disbelievers and kind to their religious brothers:

مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ وَالَّذِینَ مَعَهُ أَشِدَّاءُ عَلَی الْکُفَّارِ رُحَمَاءُ بَیْنَهُمْ.

Muhammad is the messenger of Allah. And those with him are hard against the disbelievers and merciful among themselves. (48:29)

The holy Qur’an recommends the believers:

یَا أَیُّهَا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا عَدُوِّی وَعَدُوَّکُمْ أَوْلِیَاءَ تُلْقُونَ إِلَیْهِمْ بِالْمَوَدَّهِ وَقَدْ کَفَرُوا بِمَا جَاءَکُمْ مِنْ الْحَقِّ.

O believers, take not My enemy and your enemy for friends, offering them love, as they have disbelieved in the truth that has come to you. (60:1)

The Qur’an states in Al-Mujadila Chapter:

لا تَجِدُ قَوْمًا یُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْیَوْمِ الآخِرِ یُوَادُّونَ مَنْ حَادَّ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ وَلَوْ کَانُوا آبَاءَهُمْ أَوْ أَبْنَاءَهُمْ أَوْ إِخْوَانَهُمْ أَوْ عَشِیرَتَهُمْ.

You shall not find any people

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 252, Bab 131, tradition 14.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 255, Bab 131, tradition 25.

who believe in Allah and the Last Day to be loving to anyone who opposes Allah and His Messenger, although they were their fathers, or their sons, or their brothers, or their clan. (58:22)

Hypocrisy with Brotherhood-in-faith

Hypocrisy and double standards with religious brothers is so repulsive and impure that the Dominant Allah, in His Qur’an, has deliberated the most severe chastisement and the worst place in Hell for the hypocrites.

The Hypocrites are those who express their belief before the believers, but turn against them in their absence. The hypocrites are in constant relationship with the disbelievers to place the believers into trouble, and transfer their secrets to the disbelievers. Thus, hypocrisy is an endless disease that is impossible to cure.

The hypocrite’s belief is on his tongue and his disbelief is in his heart. His heart and mind are polluted, his morality poor, his thoughts satanic, and his personality is dangerous and grotesque.

In addition to the Qur’anic verses that show the hypocrite’s signs in various chapters, there are important traditions in the hadith books, some of which appear here:

Imam al-Ridha (as), in reply to Muhammad Ibn Fudhayl, wrote about the hypocrites:

إنَّ المُنَافِقِینَ یُخَادِعُونَ اللهَ وَهُوَ خَادِعُهُمْ... لَیْسُوا مِنْ عِتْرَهِ رَسُولِ اللهِ وَلَیْسُوا مِنَ المُؤْمِنِینَ وَلَیْسُوا مِنَ المُسْلِمِینَ، یُظْهِرُونَ الإیمَانَ وَیُسِرُّونَ الکُفْرَ وَالتَّکْذِیبَ، لَعَنَهُمُ اللهُ.

The double faced people who are deceitful in relation to Allah, the religion, the Prophet (S), and the Muslims are not considered among the Prophet’s disciples and the believers. They pretend to be believers and hide their disbelief and lying. May

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Allah curse them all!(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

مِنْ عَلامَاتِ النِّفَاقِ قَسَاوَهُ القَلْبِ وَجُمُودُ العَیْنِ وَالإصْرارُ عَلی الذَّنْبِ وَالحِرْصُ عَلَی الدُّنْیَا.

Among the signs of hypocrisy are: hardheartedness, inability to weep, insistence on sins, and too much longing for this world.(2)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

One whose inside is not the same as his appearance is a hypocrite, regardless of his place, situation, and status.(3)

Doubtfulness about Acceptance of Supplications

This was explained in previous sections under mistrust and pessimism.

Postponing the Prayers

The prayer is a comprehensive worship and the most beautiful ritual for expressing service and humility to the Lord of the worlds.

The Qur’anic verses and the traditions have revealed invaluable facts about the prayer. Prayer prohibits human from engaging in wrongdoing and unlawful things. Establishing prayers is a sign of the believers. All the prophets(as) would establish prayers regularly. The prophets recommended their family members to offer prayers, too.

Observing the prayers is an obligation. Prayer is amongst the religious laws, the cause of Allah’s content, and the Prophet’s manner. After the acceptance of and insight into the religion, prayer is the core of Islam. Everything has a value, and the worth of the religion is its prayer. Prayer is a major barrier against satanic inspirations. Prayer brings about the guarantee of Allah’s Mercy. The dearest deed before Allah is prayer. It is the last recommendation of the Prophet (S) before his demise, and the light of his eyes. It makes the servant closer to Allah. Prayer is the pillar of the religion. Saying prayers while observing all its conditions leads

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 69/175, Bab 103, tradition 1.
2- Ikhtisas Mufid: 228.
3- Misbah Al-Shari’a: 25.

to forgiveness. The first deed that is observed by Allah in the Hereafter is prayer. The first thing, which is accounted for, is prayer. It removes pride from human heart. The prayer with that of piety is accepted and helps one to stay away from sins.

The preference of prayer at its appropriate time is like the preference of the Hereafter to this world, and it is regarded as more precious than wealth and children by the believer.

One who does not say prayers is away from Allah’s Mercy and the intercession of the mediators. He is a disbeliever and would be placed among the Christians and Jews in the Last Day. One who despises the prayer is ignored by Allah and His Prophet (S). Leaving, despising, or delaying the prayer holds back supplications.

Leaving Alms-giving

Doing good to the people and alms giving to the poor makes Allah content and brings about His Mercy and acceptance of supplications.

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

الصَّدَقَهُ تَمْنَعُ سَبْعِینَ نَوعاً مِنْ أنْوَاعِ البَلاءِ أهْوَنُهَا الجُذَامُ وَالبَرَصُ.

Alms giving avoids seventy kinds of calamities from human, the smallest of which are leprosy and aphesis.(1)

He also said:

شَافُوا مَرْضَاکُمْ بِالصَّدَقَهِ. وَالصَّدَقَهُ تُطِیلُ العُمُرَ وَتَزِیدُ فِی الرِّزْقِ.

Give alms and cure your patients with it. Giving alms surely removes illnesses and grief. It increases your goodness and your life.(2)

A Wonderful Story about Charity

’Abed, a pious man from the clan of Moses, implored Allah to grant him a child for thirty years, but his prayer was not answered. He went to the covenant of an Israelite prophet and said:

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1- Kanz Al-’Ummal: 15982; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3036, Al-Sadaqa, tradition 10354.
2- Kanz Al-’Ummal: 16113; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3038, Al-Sadaqa, tradition 10360.

‘O prophet of Allah! Ask Allah to give me a child. I have asked Allah for it, but I have no child yet.’

That prophet prayed and then said: ‘O ‘Abed! My supplication for you was accepted. You will soon have a child. But Allah has inclined that your child’s wedding night would be the last night of his life.’

‘Abed came home and told the story to his wife. His wife said: ‘We asked Allah to grant us a child to relax with him, but when he reaches puberty he will cause us to suffer. Nonetheless we should be happy with Allah’s fate.’ Her husband answered: ‘We are both old and unable. We might die in his puberty, so that we would not suffer from his death.’

After nine months, Allah endowed them with an endearing son. They were greatly troubled in raising him until he reached his youth and asked his parents for a decent wife. His parents neglected his request to be able to live with him more. Finally, they could not help but arrange a wedding for him. On the wedding night, they were waiting for their son’s fate - his death. The bride and groom spent that night safely and remained alive for a week. The parents delightfully went to their prophet and asked the reason. The prophet said: ‘It is a surprise! What I told you about your son was Allah’s revelation to me. We should see what your son has done that Allah has removed

p: 124

the misfortune from his fate.’ Then the trustee Gabriel descended and said: ‘Allah sends peace to you and says: Tell the son’s parents: Their son’s fate was what you had told them, but the son did a good deed that changed his fate. He was eating on his wedding night when a poor old woman came to him and asked for food. The young man gave his own special food to her. The old woman ate the food, which seemed pleasant to her. Then she raised her hands towards Me and said: ‘O Lord! Increases his lifetime!’ As the creator of the world, I added eighty years to the young man’s age, due to the supplication of that woman. My servants should know that no one is a loser in dealing with Me and I destroy no one’s reward.’(1)

Speaking Rudely

The power of speech can bring about great rewards for one by saying the truth, guiding people towards it, or solving their problems. However, it may also impart illogical and untrue things, and commit sins like backbiting, accusation, spreading rumors, and saying obscene utterances, and hence bring about doomed chastisement for humans. Muslim notables have said:

The tongue’s weight is little, but its charge is great.

The Prophet of Islam (S) stated:

إنَّ أکْثَرَ خَطَایَا ابْنِ آدَمَ فِی لِسَانِهِ.

Most of human faults are surely caused by his tongue.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

Among the signs of Satan interfering with human activities is that he is scurrilous; he is not afraid of what he says and what is

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1- Al-Sittin Al-Jami’: 44.
2- Kanz Al-Ummal: 3/ 549.

said about him.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) affirmed:

البِذَاءُ مِنَ الجَفَاءِ وَالجَفَاءُ فِی النَّارِ.

Abusive language is caused by rudeness, and rudeness is placed in the Fire.(2)

In some traditions we read:

مَنْ قَالَ فُحْشاً فِی أخِیهِ المُسْلِمِ رَفَعَ اللهُ مِنْ رِزْقِهِ البَرَکَهَ وَأوْکَلَهُ إلَی نَفْسِهِ.

If one uses abusive language about his religious brother, Allah would remove blessings from his sustenance, leave him to himself, and destroy his life’s conveniences.(3)

اللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِیَ الذُّنُوبَ الَّتِی تُنْزِلُ البَلاءَ

O Allah, forgive me for the sins which bring about tribulations!

Sins Causing Tribulations

point

Three sins cause descending of tribulations; 1. Negligence to the pleading of an afflicted, 2. Not helping the oppressed, 3. Abandonment of enjoining good and forbidding evil.

Inattention to the pleading of an afflicted

When someone, who is broken, has lost a dear one, or is afflicted by any other trouble, pleads with his religious brothers for removing his grief, it is human ethics and compassion which makes it necessary for one to reduce the sorrow of such a person. Those who hear the pleading of a grief-stricken person but do not rise to help him are not only unbelievers but also inhumane. The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

مَنْ أصْبَحَ لا یَهْتَمُّ بِأمُورِ المُسْلِمِینَ فَلَیْسَ بِمُسْلِمٍ.

One who spends the night without attempting to solve Muslims’ problems is not considered a Muslim.(4)

Attending to the Muslims’ affairs and giving help and support to them, especially to those who plead for help is the recommendation of the Almighty, His Prophet (S) and the infallible Imams (as). Imam Sadiq (as) said:

مَنْ نَفَّسَ عَنْ مُؤمِنٍ کُرْبَهً نَفَّسَ اللهُ عَنْهُ کُرَبَ الآخِرَهِ وَخَرَجَ مِنْ قَبْرِهِ

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 323, Bab Al-Baza’, tradition 1.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 325, Bab Al-Baza’, tradition 9.
3-
4- Al-Kafi: 2/ 163, Bab Ihtimam bi Umour Al-Muslimin, tradition 1.

وَهُوَ ثَلِجُ الفُؤادِ، وَمَنْ أطْعَمَهُ مِنْ جُوعٍ أطْعَمَهُ اللهُ مِنْ ثِمَارِ الجَنَّهِ، وَمَنْ سَقَاهُ شُرْبَهً سَقَاهُ اللهُ مِنَ الرَّحِیقِ المَخْتُومِ.

One who removes the grief of a believer Muslim, Allah would remove his sorrow in the Last Day, raising him from the grave while he is delightful. And one who removes a believer’s hunger Allah would feed him with heavenly fruits. One who satisfies a believer’s thirst Allah would grant him rahiq-i makhtum (a sealed intact drink).(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَنْ أغَاثَ أخَاهُ المُؤمِنَ اللَّهْفَانَ اللَّهْثانَ عِنْدَ جَهْدِهِ فَنَفَّسَ کُرْبَتَهُ وَأعَانَهُ عَلَی نَجَاحِ حَاجَتِهِ کَتَبَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ لَهُ بِذَلِکَ ثِنْتَیْنِ وَسَبْعِینَ رَحْمَهً مِنَ اللهِ، یُعَجِّلُ لَهُ وَاحِدَهً یُصْلِحُ بِهَا أمْرَ مَعِیشَتِهِ وَیَدَّخِرُ لَهُ إحْدَی وَسَبْعِینَ رَحْمَهً لأفْزَاعِ یَوْمِ القِیَامَهِ وَأهْوَالِهِ.

Anyone who answers the pleading of his Muslim brother when he is thirsty and sorrowful, helping him to remove his sorrow and get his wish Allah records seventy two blessings for him. One of the blessings is given to him in this world for arranging his life, and saves the remaining seventy one blessings for his fear in the Last Day.(2)

Avoiding Helping the Oppressed

Helping the oppressed is so much important in Islam that Amir al-Mu’minin (as), in the last minutes of his life on the twenty third night of Ramadan, advised his sons Imam Hasan and Imam Husayn (as):

کُونَا لِلظَّالِمِ خَصْماً وَلِلمَظْلُومِ عَوناً.

Be the rivals of the oppressors and the aids of the oppressed.(3)

This is the best Islamic motto and a practical one against oppression and for the oppressed.

The Messenger of Allah (S) said:

مَنْ أخَذَ

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 199, Bab tafrih Karb Al-Mu’min, tradition 3.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 163, Al-Kafi: 2/ 199, Bab tafrih Karb Al-Mu’min, tradition 1.
3- Nahj Al-Balagha: 421, Hikmat 47.

لِلمَظْلُومِ مِنَ الظَّالِمِ کَانَ مَعِی فِی الجَنَّهِ مُصَاحِباً.

Anyone who reclaims the right of an oppressed person from an oppressor one would be my companion in Paradise.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

When you saw an oppressed person, help him against the oppressors.(2)

He also said:

أحْسَنُ العَدْلِ نُصْرَهُ المَظْلومِ.

The best act of justice is helping an oppressed individual.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَا مِنْ مُؤمِنٍ یُعِینُ مُؤمِناً مَظْلُوماً إلاَّ کَانَ أفْضَلَ مِنْ صِیَامِ شَهْرٍ وَاعْتِکَافِهِ فِی المَسْجِدِ الحَرَامِ، وَمَا مِنْ مُؤمِنٍ یَنْصُرُ أخَاهُ وَهُوَ یَقْدِرُ عَلَی نُصْرَتِهِ إلاَّ وَنَصَرَهُ اللهُ فِی الدُّنْیَا وَالآخِرَهِ، وَمَا مِنْ مُؤمِنٍ یَخْذُلُ أخَاهُ وَهُوَ یَقْدِرُ عَلَی نُصْرَتِهِ إلاَّ خَذَلَهُ اللهُ فِی الدُّنْیَا والآخِرَهِ.

No faithful Muslim helps an oppressed one except that his help is preferred to a month of fasting and seclusion for worship in Masjid al-Haram (the Sacred Mosque in Mecca). No believer Muslim helps his religious brother while he is able to do so, except that Allah would help him in this world and in the Hereafter. And no believer Muslim leaves his religious brother while he can help that brother, except that Allah would leave him in the world and in the Hereafter.(4)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

وَعِزَّتِی وَجَلالِی: لأنْتَقِمَنَّ مِنَ الظَّالِمِ فِی عَاجِلِهِ وَآجِلِهِ، وَلأنْتَقِمَنَّ مِمَّنْ رَأی مَظْلُوماً فَقَدِرَ أنْ یَنْصُرَهُ فَلَمْ یَنْصُرْهُ.

The Almighty Allah says: ‘By My Glory and Might that I would certainly take revenge on the oppressor, and surely I would take revenge on anyone who could help the oppressed and refused to do so.’(5)

Abandoning Enjoining to Good and Forbidding Evil

Enjoining to Good and Forbidding Evil are two divine duties. Practicing

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 72/ 359, Bab 81, tradition 74.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 450, tradition 10364; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3384, Al-Zulm, tradition 11482.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 446, tradition 10210; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3384, Al-Zulm, tradition 11480.
4- Thawab al-A’mal: 147, Thawab Mu’awina Al-Akh; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3384, Al-Zulm, tradition 11484.
5- Kanz Al-’Ummal: 7641; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/3370, Al-Zulm, tradition 11422.

these two duties is obligatory for anyone who has the necessary conditions; that is, he knows the good and the evil, and does good and avoids evil himself. Abandoning these two duties is a cardinal sin and brings about tribulations.

Enjoining to good and forbidding evil are two important aspects of religion which, throughout history, all prophets were appointed to specifically establish.

If these two tasks are discarded, the movement of prophet hood would stop, the religion would be annihilated, and negligence, corruption, and misguidance would spread everywhere. The cities would collapse and the people would perish.

The Almighty states in the Holy Qur’an:

وَلْتَکُنْ مِنْکُمْ أُمَّهٌ یَدْعُونَ إِلَی الْخَیْرِ وَیَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَیَنْهَوْنَ عَنْ الْمُنْکَرِ وَأُوْلَئِکَ هُمْ الْمُفْلِحُونَ.

And from among you there should be a party who invite to good and enjoin what is right and forbid the wrong, and these it is that shall be successful. (3:104)

وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتُ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِیَاءُ بَعْضٍ یَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَیَنْهَوْنَ عَنْ الْمُنکَرِ.

And (as for) the believing men and the believing women, they are guardians of each other; they enjoin good and forbid evil. (9:71)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

لَتَأْمُرُنَّ بِالمَعْرُوفِ وَلَتَنْهُنَّ عَنِ المُنْکَرِ، أوْ لَیُسْتَعْمَلُنَّ عَلَیْکُمْ شِرَارُکُمْ فَیَدْعُوا خِیَارُکُمْ ولا یُسْتَجَابُ لَهُمْ.

You people should enjoin good and forbid evil, or else Allah would dominate the wicked ones on you, and your honest ones would pray, but their supplications would not be accepted.(1)

إیَّاکُمْ وَالجُلُوسَ فِی الطُّرُقَاتِ. قَالوا: یَا رَسُولَ اللهِ، مَا لَنَا مِنْ مَجَالِسِنَا بُدٌّ، نَتَحَدَّثُ فِیها. قَالَ: إذَا أبَیْتُمْ إلاَّ الجُلُوسَ فَاعْطُوا الطَّرِیقَ حَقَّهَا. قَالُوا: وَمَا حَقُّ الطَّرِیقِ

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 4/ 99, Kitab Al-’Amr bil Ma’ruf wa Al-Nahy an Al-Munkar.

یَا رَسُولَ اللهِ؟ قَالَ: غَضُّ البَصَرِ، وَکَفُّ الأذَی، وَرَدُّ السَّلاَم،ِ وَالأمْرُ بِالمَعْرُوفِ، وَالنَّهْیُ عَنِ المُنْکَرِ.

The Prophet (S) said:

Avoid blocking the people’s way by sitting on the road. People said: We cannot help it; we have no other place to talk. The Prophet (S) answered: If you cannot help it, you should observe the rights of the roads. The disciples asked: What are the rights of the road? He replied: Not looking at strange passing women, not annoying the passing people, answering people’s greetings, and enjoining to good and forbidding evil.(1)

Prophet Muhammad (S) also said:

کُلُّ کَلامِ ابْنِ آدَمَ عَلَیْهِ، لاَ لَهُ، إلاَّ أمْراً بِمَعْرُوفٍ، أوْ نَهیاً عَنْ مُنْکَرٍ، أوْ ذِکْرَ اللهِ.

All the speeches of man are to his harm except his invocation to Allah and his enjoining good and forbidding evil.(2)

Imam al-Baqir (as) stated: “Allah revealed to Prophet Shu’ayb (as): ‘I will chastise a hundred thousand people from your tribe; forty thousand of the evil doers and sixty thousand of the pious ones.’ Shu’ayb said: ‘O Lord! The wrongdoers should certainly be chastised, but why would You punish the pious ones too?’ The Almighty revealed to him: ‘The pious men were not well wishers to the wrongdoers, did not forbid them from evil doing, did not oppose them, and did not become enraged to them because of My Wrath.’(3)

A man from Khath’am tribe came to Prophet Muhammad (S) and said: “O Prophet! Inform me of the best Islamic rite!” The Messenger (S) said: “Belief in Allah.” The man said: “What is

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 4/ 99, Kitab Al-’Amr bil Ma’ruf wa Al-Nahy an Al-Munkar.
2- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 4/ 100, Kitab Al-’Amr bil Ma’ruf wa Al-Nahy an Al-Munkar.
3- Al-Kafi: 5/55, Bab Al-’Amr bil Ma’ruf…, tradition 1.

the best act after that?” He was answered: “Observing the kinship ties.” The man asked again: “What is next?” The Prophet (S) responded: “Enjoining to good and forbidding evil.” The questioner asked again: “Which deed is more hated by Allah?” The Messenger said: “Polytheism, then cutting kinship ties, and then enjoining to evil and forbidding from good.”(1)

اللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِیَ کُلَّ ذَنْبٍ أَذْنَبْتُهُ وَکُلَّ خَطِیئَهٍ أَخْطَأْتُهَا

O Allah! Forgive me every sin I have committed and every mistake I have made!

When the attraction of wrongdoing is still attached to the human heart it causes occasional wrongdoing. The researchers call this wrongdoing zanb (sin). To them, khati’a (mistake) is the frequent committing of sins at all times and places, and is the result of the increasing attraction and the steadying of wrongdoing in human heart.

After asking forgiveness for all the sins that tear apart defenses, bring down adversities, alter blessings, hold back supplications, and bring about tribulations, the human beseecher in Allah’s presence implores his Lord: “Forgive all my sins and mistakes I have done during my lifetime, either major or minor sins, intentional or unintentional ones, hidden or apparent, in childhood, adolescence or adulthood. No one can forgive all the sins except You, because You are the Merciful and the Generous One Who stated in Your Qur’an:

قُلْ یَا عِبَادِی الَّذِینَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَی أَنْفُسِهِمْ لا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَهِ اللَّهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ یَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِیعًا إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِیمُ.

‘Say: O my people who have been prodigal against yourselves, do not despair of Allah’s Mercy;

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1- Al-Kafi: 5/58, Bab Al-’Amr bil Ma’ruf…, tradition 9.

surely Allah forgives sins altogether; surely He is the All-forgiving, the All-compassionate. (39:53)’

اَللَّهُمَّ إِنِّی أَتَقَرَّبُ إِلَیْکَ بِذِکْرِکَ

O Allah, verily I seek nearness to You through remembrance of You.

The Ruins of Remoteness

Human’s excessive belonging to material issues, to the extent that they become like that of a hard veil between him and his Lord, extreme inclination to sensual desires, being drowned in mere enjoyments, spending every minute of valuable life for gaining wealth, accompanying the negligent people, leaving goodness and charity, wastage of food, cloth, and property, inattention to the relatives and friends, negligence in doing obligatory deeds, committing unlawful acts, and lack of knowledge, are all signs of the human being resident in the ruins which is remote from Allah.

This a ruin in which nothing is found but fraud, humbleness, devil hood, plunder, hypocrisy, lying, backbiting, slander, usury, betray, robbery, adultery, murder, proud, greed, stinginess, jealousy, hatred, enmity, wrath, and wrongdoing.

In this ruin, the treasure of humanity is seized by Satan, the precious life is wasted, the asset of the human spirit is destroy, he is arrested by nihilism, ungratefulness, and disbelief, and entangled in permanent loss and misfortune.

This ruin is the one in which the dealing is controlled by the Satan. Most people of this ruin are apparently humans, but animals in reality. They are engaged in useless acts, away from belief and reality, and stuck to whims and conjectures. Like a disbeliever’s grave, it is full of ornaments in appearance, but really full of severe chastisement.

It is a religious and logical

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obligation for the prisoner of the ruins of remoteness to release himself from the material belongings and set out to the union country. By means of Allah’s remembrance, he can reach this union place of knowledge, virtues, trust, honesty, truth, serving, worship, compassion, piety, contentment, patience, reliance on Allah, perseverance, charity, and justice. In the country of union, he can taste the sweetness of nearness to Allah, be adorned with the divine ethics, and accompany the prophets(as), the truthful, and the martyrs.

The holy Qur’an comments on this informed and divine migration from all the evil to all the goodness:

وَمَنْ یُهَاجِرْ فِی سَبِیلِ اللَّهِ یَجِدْ فِی الأَرْضِ مُرَاغَمًا کَثِیرًا وَسَعَهً وَمَنْ یَخْرُجْ مِنْ بَیْتِهِ مُهَاجِرًا إِلَی اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ ثُمَّ یُدْرِکْهُ الْمَوْتُ فَقَدْ وَقَعَ أَجْرُهُ عَلَی اللَّهِ وَکَانَ اللَّهُ غَفُورًا رَحِیمًا.

Whosoever migrates for the cause of Allah will find much refuge and abundance in the earth, and whoso forsakes his home, a fugitive unto Allah and His messenger, and death overtakes him, his reward is then incumbent on Allah. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful. (4:100)

Remembrance

The researchers believe that in the phrase ‘through your remembrance’, ‘through’ has a contributing meaning. So the sentence means: ‘O Allah! I seek nearness to You by means of Your remembrance.’

The Meanings of ‘Remembrance’

Three meanings are mentioned for the word remembrance. 1. Sincere attention to Allah, 2. The Qur’an, 3. The Prophet (S) and his Household (as).

Hearty Attention to the Almighty

Remembrance of Allah is contrary to negligence. A person negligent of his Creator is not afraid of wasting his lifetime, committing unlawful deeds, violating other

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people’s rights, being deprived of worship, gaining unlawful wealth, and getting entangled in misfortunes.

A person who remembers Allah, on the other hand, is quite aware that his Lord has sent the prophets(as), revealed the heavenly books for guiding His servants, and set the Paradise for virtues and the Hell for vices. Such a servant spends his life in worshipping Allah, serving other people, avoiding the unlawful things, observing people’s rights, being pious, acquiring knowledge, obtaining sustenance lawfully, solving problems of his believing brothers, fulfilling their needs, and helping the poor, and in all his endeavors, he only seeks Allah’s content.

This remembrance of Allah, which is an internal tendency, gives human one to do virtues, achieve Allah’s nearness and taste the sweetness of worshipping the Almighty and serving His people.

Prophet Jonah’s tribe who had neglected Allah got subjected to Allah’s chastisement. But then they remembered Allah again by the guidance of a pious wise man. They got tearful, repented, ran away to the desert, and hence sent the thundering cloud of chastisement away. They reached Allah’s closeness and spent the rest of their lives worshipping and serving Allah. They also died to benefit from His Mercy and His Paradise in the Hereafter.

Those sinners who moved away from misguidance to righteousness ended well. They compensated for their dark past by worshipping. They could only reach such a position by Allah’s remembrance. Their repentance from their previous wrongdoing is a model for others and presents Allah’s argument for everyone.

Eminent figures like Asiyah (the

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wife of Pharaoh), the people of the Cave (Ashab-e Kahf), Bohlul Nabbash, Horr Ibn Yazid, and Fudhayl Ayyaz who have illuminated the history with their purified hearts, are among those who remembered Allah to save themselves from misfortune and Satan’s deceit. They moved from a humble position to the high place of Allah’s nearness and Mercy.

The Holy Qur’an

The Compassionate Allah has mentioned Qur’an as Zikr (remembrance) in various Qur’anic verses, such as:

إِنَّا نَحْنُ نَزَّلْنَا الذِّکْرَ وَإِنَّا لَهُ لَحَافِظُونَ.

It is We who have sent down the Remembrance, and We watch over it. (15:9)

The holy Qur’an includes rules and teachings which, if, applied, guarantees human prosperity in this world and the Hereafter. It is a perfect Book to be modulated in life. Everything that a human needs in his life can be found in the Quran. Qur’an guides humans to the best and the most permanent path and gives good tidings of generous rewards to those who follow it. Sincere attention to Qur’an and deep pondering in its verses removes ignorance and brings about wisdom.

Following the goodness and avoiding the evil that is mentioned in the Qur’an causes salvation and greatness. Following the Qur’an adorns human with every virtue and prohibits him from every vice, immunizing him against the worldly and heavenly dangers. From the past knowledge to the future forecast, the healing of problems, and the arrangement of everything in life, originates only from the Qur’an.

The Messenger of Allah (S) used the benefits from the holy Qur’an to make the best people

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in the history out of the most ignorant ones. He saved the pagan Arabs from the Hell and moved them to the Paradise of guidance and prosperity. The Prophet (S) stated:

فَإذا الْتَبَسَتْ عَلَیْکُمُ الفِتَنُ کَقِطَعِ اللَّیْلِ المُظْلِمِ فَعَلَیْکُمْ بِالقُرْآنِ؛ فَإنَّهُ شَافِعٌ مُشَفِّعٌ، وَمَاحِلٌ مُصَدِّقٌ، وَمَنْ جَعَلَهُ أمَامَهُ قَادَهُ إلَی الجَنَّهِ، وَمَنْ جَعَلَهُ خَلْفَهُ سَاقَهُ إلَی النَّارِ.

When the adversities made the issues ambiguous for you, as darkness of the night, follow Qur’an, because its intercession and its complaint are accepted. Anyone who follows Qur’an would be taken to the Paradise by it, and anyone who ignores Qur’an would be taken to the Hell by it.(1)

Imam Al-Sajjad (as) stated:

لَوْ مَاتَ مَنْ بَیْنَ المَشْرِقَیْنِ وَالمَغْرِبَیْنِ لَمَا اسْتَوْحَشْتُ بَعْدَ أنْ یَکُونَ القُرْآنُ مَعِی.

If the humans from East to West die altogether, I would not be fearful, as long as Qur’an is with me.(2)

It is true; for Imam Al-Sajjad (as) in whose spirit Qur’anic verses had been embellished as well as realized, there remained no room for fear in solitude. Hence he observed Allah with his spiritual insight, his spirit was illuminated with ethical verses. He practiced the rules stated in verses precisely and sincerely. He was so familiar with the verses about the Hereafter, as if he saw himself on top of the peak of salvation.

Also Imam Zayn Al-Abidin (as) said:

آیَاتُ القُرْآنِ خَزَائِنُ: فَکُلَّمَا فَتَحْتَ خَزِینَهً یَنْبَغِی لَکَ أنْ تَنْظُرَ مَا فِیهَا.

Qur’anic verses are treasure sites; so when each site is opened you’d better ponder carefully in it.(3)

One who ponders in Qur’anic verses and

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 598, Kitab Fazl Al-Quran, tradition 2.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 602, Kitab Fazl Al-Quran, tradition 13.
3- Al-Kafi: 2/ 609, Kitab Fazl Al-Quran, tradition 2.

observes spiritual meanings of them, and then practices Qur’anic orders and matches his behavior to them, would gain power to seek Allah’s nearness. Through Qur’an, which is Allah’s remembrance, he will be placed in Allah’s nearness and will benefit from seeing His Magnificence forever.

The Prophet and His Household

Al-Baqir Al-Olum (as), the fifth Imam, has narrated an important tradition that includes major issues and lofty meanings. The late Koleyni, in his Al-Kafi, has narrated this tradition as the opening to the chapter which is on excellence of Qur’an. Imam al-Baqir (as), explaining about the verse:

إِنَّ الصَّلاهَ تَنْهَی عَنْ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنْکَرِ، وَلَذِکْرُ اللَّهِ أَکْبَرُ.

Prayer forbids indecency and dishonor. Allah’s remembrance is greater. (29:45)

He states:

وَنَحْنُ ذِکْرُ اللهِ، وَنَحْنُ أکْبَرُ.

And we are Allah’s remembrance, and we are greater.(1)

“Remembrance” for sure means the Prophet (S) and twelve infallible Imams, who are the successors of Prophet’s belief, morality, knowledge, and insight. They are expositors of Qur’an, transmitters of rules, protectors of religion, and Allah’s trustees among people. These twelve Imams are actual manifestations of the Qur’an and human’s guides toward salvation and liberation in the world and the Hereafter. They are the reminders of reality, caches of knowledge, and realization of Allah’s attributes. Since infallible Imams are speakers of Qur’an, Imam al-Baqir (as) stated:

We are Allah’s remembrance, and we are greater.

Human belief is not complete without accepting their guardianship and science. Without obedience to their orders, one’s morality would be corrupted. And without inclusion in their leadership, his deeds would be insufficient. His world would be unorganized and his Last

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 598, Kitab Fazl Al-Quran, tradition 1.

Day would be covered by Allah’s Wrath.

The Prophet of Islam (S), in the last moments of his life, told his nation:

إنِّی تَارِکٌ فِیکُمُ الثَّقَلَیْنِ: کِتَابَ اللهِ وَعِتْرَتِی أهْلَ بَیْتِی، وَإنَّهُمَا لَنْ یَفْتَرِقَا حَتَّی یَرِدَا عَلَیَّ الحَوْضَ، مَا إنْ تَمَسَّکْتُمْ بِهِمَا لَنْ تَضِلُّوا بَعْدِی أبَداً.

I will leave two invaluable things among you; Qur’an and my Household. These two would not be separated from each other to be presented to me beside the River in Paradise. If you resort to these two precious things, you would never go astray after me.(1)

It is important to note that purifying the heart from the vices and adorning it with divine meanings and names, as well as keeping these virtues from Satan’s assault, continuous presence before Allah, awareness of His existence in every minute of life, practicing every obligatory deed, and doing anything for the wellness of people, are all “remembrance” of Allah.

Some of the pious persons, as well as some traditions suggest that the word ‘remembrance’ in Qur’anic verses and traditions denotes interior realities and practical deeds. ‘Remembrance’ is, in fact, actualization of Qur’an, Prophet’s prophet hood, and Imams traditions. And there is no way to seek Allah’s pleasure, but through His remembrance. If we refresh Allah’s remembrance in our hearts, practice Qur’anic verses, and follow the Prophet and Imams (as) whole-heartedly, we can gain Allah’s favor and attain prosperity.

When human heart embraces divine meanings and names of Allah, the impact of these meanings on his soul, mind, heart, and all organs becomes evident. Then

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1- This tradition is narrated in all Shi’a and Sunni tradition books.

a hot and sweet affection occupies his heart, and he becomes an instance of:

أَشَدُّ حُبّاً لِلَّهِ.

(Those of faith) are overflowing in their love for Allah. (2:165)

One who reaches this position is regarded as

رِجَالٌ لا تُلْهِیهِمْ تِجَارَهٌ وَلا بَیْعٌ عَنْ ذِکْرِ اللَّهِ.

Men whom neither traffic nor merchandise can divert from the Remembrance of Allah. (24:37)

This is a comprehensive position for humans, which places them in Allah’s succession on the earth.

It is in this high position that human is safe from Satan’s fraud. Nothing can distract him from Allah. He would know, want, and find nothing above Allah.

The Imam of the believers, ‘Ali (as), stated heartily:

مَا رَأیْتُ شَیْئاً إلاَّ رَأیْتُ اللهَ قَبْلَهُ وَمَعَهُ وَبَعْدَهُ.

I saw nothing except that I saw Allah before it, with it, an after it.

And trained by his divine insight and understanding, Sayyid Al-Shohada’, Imam Hossayn (as), who was in extreme thirst and hunger on ‘Ashura, surrounded by calamities, laden with seventy one of his martyred companions, and hearing the sound of weeping women and girls of the Household (as), put his bloody face on the earth, before his Beloved and said:

إلَهِی! رِضیً بِقَضَائِکَ وَصَبْراً عَلی بَلائِکَ وَتَسْلِیماً لأمْرِکَ، لا مَعْبُودَ لِی سِوَاکَ.

O Allah! I am happy with Your Wish, patient with Your examination, and surrendered to Your Order. There is no deity for me except You.

وَأَسْتَشْفِعُ بِکَ إِلَی نَفْسِکَ

I seek intercession from You with Yourself

This part of the valuable supplication denotes two facts. First, the supplicant has reached the peak of detachment from the world. Thus he ignores

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every worldly means and turns his heart to Allah and His Mercy. An intercessor should be one who is acceptable, and since there is no doubt in acceptance of Allah’ intercession, the supplicant would seek intercession from Allah with Himself.

Second, the supplicant considers himself so much drenched in sins and disobedience that no intercession is beneficial for him, except the intercession of Allah himself, which saves him from wrongdoing, and releases him from the consequences of committing sins, and hence makes him subjected to Allah’s Mercy. Therefore, the supplicant, with a broken heart says miserably:

وَأَسْتَشْفِعُ بِکَ إِلَی نَفْسِکَ...

I seek intercession from You with Yourself

The Meaning of Intercession

The insightful people very well know the fact that intercession is the help of a powerful person towards a weak one, who has minimum knowledge, belief, good deeds, and virtuous morality, and his weakness has caused to engage in wrongdoing. His offence is not, of course, one that had abolished his belief completely, but that has reduced his progress toward spiritual perfection, and deprived him from attaining Paradise. The Almighty has set the intercession position, out of Mercy, so that a powerful intercessor can help a sinful believer, by his own spirituality, save him from wrongdoing and the consequent chastisement in the Hereafter.

As a result, the intercession of the pious intercessors would not benefit the disbelievers, the polytheists, the hostile, and the hypocrites, as it is rightly mentioned in the Holy Qur’an:

کُلُّ نَفْسٍ بِمَا کَسَبَتْ رَهِینَهٌ (38) إِلاَّ أَصْحَابَ الْیَمِینِ (39) فِی جَنَّاتٍ یَتَسَاءَلُونَ (40) عَنْ الْمُجْرِمِینَ

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(41) مَا سَلَکَکُمْ فِی سَقَرَ (42) قَالُوا لَمْ نَکُ مِنَ الْمُصَلِّینَ (43) وَلَمْ نَکُ نُطْعِمُ الْمِسْکِینَ (44) وَکُنَّا نَخُوضُ مَعَ الْخَائِضِینَ (45) وَکُنَّا نُکَذِّبُ بِیَوْمِ الدِّینِ (46) حَتَّی أَتَانَا الْیَقِینُ (47) فَمَا تَنْفَعُهُمْ شَفَاعَهُ الشَّافِعِینَ (48).

Every soul will be held in pledge for its deeds, except the Companions of the Right Hand. They will be in Gardens of Delight; they will question each other. And ask of the Sinners: ‘What led you into Hell-Fire?’ They will say: ‘We were not of those who prayed; nor were we of those who fed the indigent; but we used to talk vanities with vain talkers; and we used to deny the Day of Judgment, until there came to us the Hour that is certain.’ Then will no intercession of any intercessors profit them. (47:38-48)

Intercession-help of a powerful believer to a weak one who still shows signs of spirituality- is the last phase one the Day of Judgment, and either prevents one from being sent to Hell, or brings one out from it. The reasons for the effectiveness of intercession are Allah’s embracing mercy, the high position of the intercessor, and the worth of the sinful believer(1).

The Conditions for Intercession

Based on the Qur’anic verses and the traditions of Prophet’s Household (as), one who is hopeful of intercession should possess belief and good deeds, to the extent necessary to be able to compensate for his faults via the divine Mercy in the world, and recompense his disability via intercession in the Hereafter, and reach Paradise. Or if he

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1- Translation of al-Mizan: 1/ 231; with a little difference.

was sent to Hell for his burden of sins he can exit the Hell because of intercessions.

The intercessors of the World and Hereafter

The Qur’anic verses and traditions reveal that the intercessors, in this world and the next world, are belief, righteousness, repentance, Qur’an, prophets, Imams, martyrs, righteous believers, and theological scholars. As these intercessors save the disbelievers from ignorance and help them become believers in the world; in the Hereafter, too, they help the wrongdoers to compensate for their faulty deeds and are thus rescued.

Therefore, intercession has its own sphere in Islam. It is an Islamic principle whose refrainer is out of the sphere of Islam.

The Intercession of Belief

یَا أَیُّهَا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَآمِنُوا بِرَسُولِهِ یُؤْتِکُمْ کِفْلَیْنِ مِنْ رَحْمَتِهِ وَیَجْعَلْ لَکُمْ نُورًا تَمْشُونَ بِهِ وَیَغْفِرْ لَکُمْ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَحِیمٌ.

O believers! Fear Allah and believe in His Messenger, and He will give you a twofold portion of His Mercy, and He will appoint for you a light whereby you walk, and forgive you; Allah is All-Forgiving, All-Compassionate. (57:28)

The Intercession of Good deeds

وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَهُمْ مَغْفِرَهٌ وَأَجْرٌ عَظِیمٌ.

To those who believe and do deeds of righteousness, Allah has promised forgiveness and a great reward. (5:9)

The Intercession of Repentance

Mo’awiya Ibn Wahab says: “I heard Imam Sadiq saying:

إذَا تَابَ العَبْدُ تَوبَهً نَصُوحاً أحَبَّهُ اللهُ وَسَتَرَ عَلَیْهِ... یُنْسِی مَلَکَیْهِ مَا کَانَا یَکْتُبَانِ عَلَیْهِ، وَیُوحِی إلَی جَوارِحِهِ وَإلَی بِقَاعِ الأرْضِ أنْ اکْتُمِی عَلَیْهِ ذُنُوبَهُ؛ فَیَلْقَی اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ حِینَ یَلْقَاهُ وَلَیْسَ شَیْءٌ یَشْهَدُ عَلَیْهِ بِشَیْءٍ مِنَ الذُّنُوبِ.

‘If a servant repents sincerely, Allah would love him and cover his faults in the world and the Hereafter.’ I asked

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Imam Sadiq (as): ‘How will Allah cover them?’ Imam (as) replied: ‘He will make the two angels, in charge of that servant, forget all about his sins they have recorded, and will reveal to his body organs to do so. So the servant would meet Allah while there is no record of his sins.’(1)

The Intercession of Qur’an

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

إذَا الْتَبَسَتْ عَلَیْکُمُ الفِتَنُ کَقِطَعِ اللَّیْلِ المُظْلِمِ فَعَلَیْکُمْ بِالقُرْآنِ؛ فَإنَّهُ شَافِعٌ مُشَفِّعٌ، وَمَاحِلٌ مُصَدِّقٌ.

When calamities surround you like the darkness of night seek refuge in Qur’an, for Qur’an is an intercessor whose intercession would be accepted. And it is a complainer whose complaint would be confirmed.(2)

Many traditions are mentioned in Bihar al-Anwar, Mahajjat Al-Bayza’, and other valuable tradition books to which the readers can refer.

وَأَسْألُکَ بِجُودِکَ أَن تُدْنِیَنِی مِن قُرْبِکَ

وَأَن تُوزِعَنِی شُکْرَکَ وَأَن تُلْهِمَنِی ذِکْرَکَ

And I ask You through Your Munificence, to bring me nearer to Your Mercy, to bless me with gratitude to You and to inspire me with Your remembrance.

The Commander of the Believers (as), in these divine phrases, asks Allah three positions which belong to His devoted servants; the positions of nearness, the gratitude and the remembrance.

Obtaining these three positions is, undoubtedly, not possible but through Allah’s Benevolence and His Mercy. If He does not provide benefits and interest to gain to his devotee servants and means for gaining these heavenly positions, and help him not in eliminating dark veils and reaching light ones, the servant would not reach the positions. That is why the supplicant asks His Munificence

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1- Al-Kafi, 2/ 436, Bab Al-Towba, tradition 12.
2- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 6/ 171, Bab Istihbab Al-Tafakkor…, tradition 7657.

and Mercy, so that these attributes of Allah would be apprehended in his life, in order to help him reach heavenly positions.

For understanding just a small aspect, of Allah’s Munificence and Mercy and their effect on human life, it is deserved to take a look at some phrases from the valuable ‘Arafa supplication of Imam Husayn (as), so that we will understand that by resorting to Allah’s Mercy and ignoring any other worldly sources, one can gain spiritual positions:

فَلَکَ الْحَمْدُ وَالشّکْرُ یَا مَنْ أَقَالَ عَثْرَتِی، وَنَفّسَ کُرْبَتِی، وَأَجَابَ دَعْوَتِی، وَسَتَرَ عَوْرَتِی، وَغَفَرَ ذُنُوبِی، وَبَلّغَنِی طَلِبَتِی، وَنَصَرَنِی عَلَی عَدُوّی، وَإِنْ أَعُدّ نِعَمَکَ وَمِنَنَکَ وَکَرَائِمَ مِنَحِکَ لا أُحْصِیهَا، یَا مَوْلایَ أَنْتَ الّذِی مَنَنْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَنْعَمْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَحْسَنْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَجْمَلْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَفْضَلْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَکْمَلْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی رَزَقْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی وَفّقْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَعْطَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَغْنَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَقْنَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی آوَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی کَفَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی هَدَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی عَصَمْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی سَتَرْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی غَفَرْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَقَلْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی مَکّنْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَعْزَزْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَعَنْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی عَضَدْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَیّدْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی نَصَرْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی شَفَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی عَافَیْتَ، أَنْتَ الّذِی أَکْرَمْتَ، تَبَارَکْتَ وَتَعَالَیْتَ، فَلَکَ الْحَمْدُ دَائِماً، وَلَکَ الشّکْرُ وَاصِباً أَبَداً.

Therefore, praise is for Thee, and also gratitude. O He who overlooked my lapses, relieved me from anxiety and grief, answered to my call, covered up my shortcomings, exempted

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me from (the consequences of) my wrongdoing, let me have that which I had asked for, helped me to get the better of my adversary, and (how many of) Thy bounties, favors and blessings, I asked for and got, cannot be counted. O my Lord-Master. Thou (it is) who: bestowed benefits, overwhelmed with bounties, granted favors, treated with kindness, gave more and more, brought to fullness, made available means of sustenance, rendered (things and events) convenient and useful, donated endowments, relieved from privation, imported, strength and influence, allowed to take refuge in Thy sanctuary; arranged supplies adequate to wants, showed the right path, watched over, covered up, cancelled penalty, made allowances, implanted fearlessness and fortitude, made a present of honor and glory, assisted by aid, strengthened by encouragement, lent a helping hand, gave occasion to succeed, restored health, kept up well-being and welfare, gave respect and did favors. Thou gives blessings, and high rewards, so, praise is for Thee, for ever, thanks are for Thee, in unbroken succession, till eternity.(1)

It is worthy as well to review parts of Abu Hamza Thomali supplication, which was the prayer of Imam Zayn Al-Abidin (as) on Ramadan nights. It helps get a bit of Allah’s Munificence:

سَیّدِی أَنَا الصّغِیرُ الّذِی رَبّیْتَهُ وَأَنَا الْجَاهِلُ الّذِی عَلّمْتَهُ وَأَنَا الضَّالّ الّذِی هَدَیْتَهُ وَأَنَا الْوَضِیعُ الّذِی رَفَعْتَهُ وَأَنَا الْخَائِفُ الّذِی آمَنْتَهُ وَالْجَائِعُ الّذِی أَشْبَعْتَهُ وَالْعَطْشَانُ الّذِی أَرْوَیْتَهُ وَالْعَارِی الّذِی کَسَوْتَهُ وَالْفَقِیرُ الّذِی أَغْنَیْتَهُ وَالضّعِیفُ الّذِی قَوّیْتَهُ وَالذّلِیلُ الّذِی أَعْزَزْتَهُ وَالسّقِیمُ الّذِی شَفَیْتَهُ وَالسَّائِلُ الّذِی أَعْطَیْتَهُ وَالْمُذْنِبُ الّذِی سَتَرْتَهُ وَالْخَاطِئُ

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1- Imam Husayn’s Du’a’ On Arafah Day.

الّذِی أَقَلْتَهُ وَأَنَا الْقَلِیلُ الّذِی کَثّرْتَهُ وَالْمُسْتَضْعَفُ الّذِی نَصَرْتَهُ وَأَنَا الطّرِیدُ الّذِی آوَیْتَهُ.

O my Master! I am the little that You have brought up And I am the ignorant that You have taught And I am the straying that You have guided And I am the humble that You have given rise And I am the afraid that You have given security And I am the hungry that You have satiated And I am the thirsty that You have watered And I am the naked that You have dressed And I am the poor that You have given affluence And I am the weak that You have strengthened And I am the lowly that You have given mighty And I am the ill that You have cured And I am the beggar that You have donated And I am the sinner that You have covered And I am the guilty that You have excused And I am the valueless that You have evaluated And I am the helpless that You have backed And I am the expelled that You have boarded.(1)

A devotee servant can thus reach Allah’s nearness by resorting to His Munificence and Mercy.

The Nearness Position

This is the last and the highest position of Allah’s devoted servants. Through Allah’s Munificence and Mercy, the servant avoids unlawful acts, continues doing good deeds, obeys Allah’s Messenger and his Household (as), accompanies Allah’s friends, and hence gradually reaches His nearness. Reaching the nearness of Allah is possible for all servants through worshipping and obeying

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1- Supplication of Abu-Hamzah al-Thumali.

Him. When the servant attains nearness, his heart would be filled with the essence of belief, and everything other than Allah gets ignored by him. Such a servant would be Allah’s successor on the earth, and would act godly, on his part, as is stated in a divine tradition:

عَبْدِی أطِعْنِی حَتَّی اَجْعَلَکَ مِثْلِی: تَقُلْ لِلْشَیْءِ ’کُنْ‘ فَیَکُونُ.

My servant! Obey Me so that I will set you an example of Myself, in terms of Power and Inclination. I say ‘Be!’ to something, and it becomes immediately, then you will say ‘Be!’ to something and it becomes immediately, too.(1)

Another Divine tradition reads:

أنَا مَلِکٌ حَیٌّ لا أمُوتُ أبَداً، عَبْدِی اَطِعْنِی اَجْعَلْکَ مَلِکاً حَیّاً لاَ تَمُوتُ أبَداً.

I am an alive King who never dies. Obey Me, My servant, so that I would set you, too, as an alive king who never dies.(2)

The insightful persons believe that the purpose of all worships, prayers, and obedience is reaching Allah’s nearness. If one performs his worships, with all obligatory conditions combined with the same purpose, he would be at a closer proximity to Allah, and his inclination would be lost in Allah’s Will. In his heart, there would remain nothing but Allah’s Will, so now he may do Godly deeds, if he wants.

When the servant moves toward his Lord through worship and obedience, he gets subjected to Allah’s Mercy and Glorious names for each step that he takes forward. But His Mercy approaches the servant considerably faster than the servant’s approach towards Him, hence we read in

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1- Anis al-Layl: 152.
2- Rouh Al-Bayan.

another Divine tradition:

مَنْ تَقَرَّبَ اِلَیَّ شِبْراً تَقَرَّبْتُ اِلَیْهِ ذِرَاعاً، وَمَنْ تَقَرَّبَ اِلَیَّ ذِرَاعاً تَقَرَّبْتُ اِلَیْهِ بَاعاً، وَمَنْ أتَانِی مَشْیاً أتَیْتُ اِلَیْهِ هَرْوَلَهً.

When one approaches Me as far as a span I would approach him as far as a cubit, and if he walks to Me, I would run to him.(1)

Therefore the result of worship and obedience is nearness to Allah, and the position of Allah’s ‘favorite servants’ is considered as a high position in Qur’anic verses and the traditions. To the insightful people, all deeds and attributes of Allah’s favorite servants are transient, in comparison to Allah’s; their speech is a ray of His Divine Speech; and their will is Allah’s Will. This view is based on significant Divine traditions narrated by the Prophet (S) and his Household (as), like the following:

اِنَّ اللهَ یَقُولُ: لاَ یَزَالُ عَبْدٌ یَتَقَرَّبُ اِلَیَّ بِالنَّوَافِلِ حَتَّی أُحِبَّهُ فَأکُونُ أنَا سَمْعَهُ الَّذِی یَسْمَعُ بِهِ وَبَصَرَهُ الَّذِی یُبْصِرُ بِهِ وَلِسَانَهُ الَّذِی یَنْطِقُ بِهِ وَقَلْبَهُ الَّذِی یَعْقِلُ بِهِ؛ فَإذَا دَعَانِی أجَبْتُهُ وإذَا سَألَنِی أعْطَیْتُهُ.

The Almighty says: My favorite servants seek nearness to Me through Nafila (recommended prayers) to the extent that I would love him. This way, I become his ear to hear, his eye to see, his tongue to talk, his heart to think, so that when he calls Me I would answer him, and when he requests Me I would grant him.(2)

The Prophet of Islam (S) stated:

کَلاَمُ المُتَّقِینَ بِمَنْزِلَهِ الوَحْیِ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ إذَا وُجِدَتْ کَلِمَهٌ عَلَی لِسَانِ بَعْضِهِمْ فَقِیلَ لَهُ: مَنْ حَدَّثَکَ بِهَذِهِ؟ فَیَقُولُ: حَدَّثَنِی قَلْبِی

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1- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 5/ 298, Bab Istihbab Zikr Allah, tradition 5910; Nafahat al-Layl: 66.
2- Kanz Al-Ommal: 1155.

عَنْ فِکْرِی عَنْ سِرِّی عَنْ رَبِّی.

The speech of Allah’s pious servants has an equal stance as heavenly revelation. So when some of them speak they are asked: ‘Are you talking on behalf of someone?’ They would answer: ‘My heart talked to me from my mind, my mind from my inside, and my inside talked to me from my Lord.’(1)

The highest such position belonged to the Prophet of Islam (S), so he said:

مَنْ رَآنِی فَقَد رَأی الحَقَّ.

One who sees me has undoubtedly seen the Truth.(2)

And he also stated:

لِی مَعَ اللهِ وَقْتٌ لاَ یَسَعُنِی فِیهِ مَلَکٌ مُقَرَّبٌ وَلاَ نَبِیٌّ مُرْسَلٌ.

There is a special time for me with Allah in which no favorite angel, or prophet is allowed.(3)

After the Prophet (S), the second nearest position to Allah is for Imam ‘Ali (as) who stated:

مَعْرِفَتِی بِالنُّورَانِیَّهِ مَعْرِفَهُ اللهِ.

Knowing me is possible through knowing Allah’s Light.(4)

Wonders of Favorite Servants

1. Hajj Sayyid ‘Ali Qazi

My great Fiqh wa Osul professor, the late Ayatollah Hajj Shaykh Abulfazl Najafi Khansari, was sick. Some months before his demise, I went to meet him and asked him to tell me any wonders that he could recall of his late professor, the late Hajj Sayyid ‘Ali Qazi. He said: “One night, we went to the Kufah mosque, along with the professor and some of his other students. We began worshipping beside him and beseeched the Almighty. We, then, got ready to exit the mosque. Suddenly, a big and dangerous snake approached us. Everybody got frightened except our professor, who was always calm. With his usual tranquility, he turned to

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1- Bahr Al-Ma’arif: 1/ 40.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 58/ 234, Bab 45, fi Ro’yat Al-Nabi, tradition 1; Nafahat al-Layl: 66.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 18/ 360, Bab 3; Nafahat al-Layl: 67.
4- Bihar al-Anwar: 26/1, Bab 14, tradition 1; Nafahat al-Layl: 67.

the snake and said: ‘Die!’ The snake remained still as a stick, and we went out of the mosque peacefully. After a while, a friend of ours went back to see if the snake had died by the professor’s call. He struck the snake to find it dead and returned to us to head for Najaf. The professor turned to him and said: ‘The snake died with my command. It was not necessary for you to investigate about it.’”

2. Mirza Tahir Tonekaboni

Mirza Tahir Tonekaboni, a contemporary philosopher, said: “I came out of Sepahsalar school in Tehran’s Baharestan square and saw a sayyid man on the other side of the street. I recognized him to be a previous classmate of mine, so I went upto him to greet him. Then I took him to my room at the school. It was cold and I poured him a cup of tea. He asked me to go to Qom with him for pilgrimage but I told him that it was difficult since it was such a cold night, but he insisted until I accepted it. Suddenly he said this is Qom! I found myself in the holy shrine of Hazrat Ma’suma (sa). I picked an object from there and put it in my pocket to be assured of our presence there. After finishing our pilgrimage, he said this is Tehran! And I found ourselves sitting in my warm room in the school and that object was still with me.”

3. Jabir Ja’fi

Jabir Ja’fi was Imam al-Baqir’s disciple and Imam

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Sadiq (as) knew him as his father’s companion in the world and the Hereafter. Some people went to him and asked his help in building a mosque. Jabir said: “I won’t help in building a place in which a believer man falls down and dies!” The people left him regarding him to be stingy as well as a liar! The next morning they began building the mosque. In the evening though, the builder fell down the scaffold and died. The people then found out that Jabir was not stingy nor a liar.(1)

‘Ala’ Ibn Sharik says: Husham Ibn Abdul Malik invited Jabir Ja’fi and I accompanied him. On the way, we crossed a shepherd and his cattle. A sheep from his cattle bleated. Jabir laughed at it. I asked him the reason to which he said: “This sheep is telling its lamb to leave this district, because a wolf picked its lamb last year.” I was surprised and went to the shepherd to investigate about it. I asked him to sell me that lamb, but he refused and said: “The sheep once had the best milk, but hasn’t given milk since last year, as a wolf took its lamb. This year it has a lamb and milk again.” Then we moved until we reached Kufah Bridge. There we met a man with a ruby ring. Jabir took his ring to have a look at it and then threw it into the rivers of Forat. The owner of the ring got very

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1- Rijal Kashi: 171.

unhappy. Then Jabir stretched his hand towards the water and the water came to him, bringing the ring with it. Jabir took the ring from the water and gave it to its owner!(1)

The Gratitude Position

These are the positions that Allah’s favourite servants gained, only due to their vigorous attempts. It is so high a position that few human beings can obtain it:

وَقَلِیلٌ مِنْ عِبَادِی الشَّکُورُ.

But few of My servants are grateful. (34:13)

The valuable narrator, the late Mullah Mohammad Al-Baqir Majlesi says about the gratitude position:

الشُّکْرُ الإعْتِرَافُ بِالنِّعْمَهِ ظَاهِراً وَبَاطِناً وَمَعْرِفَهُ المُنْعِمِ وَصَرْفُهَا فِی مَا أمَرَ بِهِ.

Gratitude is acknowledging the blessings, and the Provider of the blessings, and spending our blessings in ways we are ordered.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

شُکْرُ النِّعْمَهِ اجْتِنَابُ المَحَارِمِ.

Being grateful of Allah’s blessings is avoiding all that is unlawful.(3)

At the end of his sermon on ‘Ashura night, Imam Husayn (as) asked the Almighty:

فَاجْعَلْنَا مِنَ الشَّاکِرِینَ.

O Lord! Set us as Your grateful servants.(4)

Raghib Isfahani says: “Gratitude has three levels; hearty, verbal, and practical. Hearty gratitude is knowing the blessing as well as the Provider of the blessing. Verbal gratitude is confessing to the blessings. And practical gratitude is consuming the blessing in the ways which Allah has ordered.

Imam Sadiq (as) has narrated the following:

إنَّ اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ أوْحَی اِلَی مُوسَی: یَا مُوسَی! إشْکُرْنِی حَقَّ شُکْرِی. فَقَالَ: یَا رَبِّ! وَکَیْفَ أشْکُرُکَ حَقَّ شُکْرِکَ وَلَیْسَ مِنْ شُکْرٍ الاَّ وَأنْتَ أنْعَمْتَ عَلَیَّ؟ قَالَ: یَا مُوسَی! الآنَ شَکَرْتَنِی حَیْثُ عَلِمْتَ أنَّ ذَلِکَ مِنِّی.

The Almighty revealed to Moses (as): O Moses! Be grateful to Me as

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1- Rijal Kashi: 172.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 268/64, Bab 14, tradition 1.
3- Al-Kafi: 2/ 95, Bab Al-Skokr, tradition 10.
4- Al-Irshad:2/ 91.

I deserve it! Moses said: O Lord! How should I be grateful to You, as You deserve it, while I thank You for Your blessings by my tongue that is another blessing of You? The Almighty stated: O Moses! You are grateful now, as you understood that even your tongue is My blessing.(1)

We read in ‘Arafa supplication of Imam Husayn (as):

وَلَوْ حَرَصْتُ أَنَا وَالْعَادّونَ مِنْ أَنَامِکَ أَنْ نُحْصِیَ مَدَی إِنْعَامِکَ سَالِفِهِ وَآنِفِهِ مَا حَصَرْنَاهُ عَدَداً، وَلا أَحْصَیْنَاهُ أَمَداً.

If I crave for more, taken up with greed to have an idea about Thy bounties, given and to be given (with the help of expert accountants), we shall neither be able to fence in the sum total, nor reckon, (nor) agree with each other; also from where and how all that was made available!(2)

Prophet David (as) said to Allah:

یَا رَبِّ! کَیْفَ اَشْکُرُکَ وَالشُّکْرُ نِعْمَهٌ مِنْکَ أحْتَاجُ اِلَیْهَا اِلَی شُکْرٍ آخَرَ؟ فَقَالَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: یَا دَاوُدُ! إذَا عَلِمْتَ أنَّ مَا بِکَ مِنْ نِعْمَهٍ فَمِنِّی، فَقَدْ شَکَرْتَنِی.

My Lord! How can I thank You while my thank is itself another blessing of Yours for which I should thank You again? He was answered by the Almighty: O David! If you know that you have every blessing from Me, you have already thanked for it.

The aforementioned traditions involve verbal gratitude. The highest level of gratitude, which is the practical one, is certain belief, doing good deeds, being virtuous, and avoiding all sins.

The Wonderful Account of a Grateful Servant

Musmi’ Ibn Abdul Malik says: “In the land of Mina, we were eating grapes

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 98, Bab Al-Shokr, tradition 27, with slight differences; Nafahat al-Layl: 68.
2- Mafatih Al-Janan: ‘Arafa supplication.

in the presence of Imam Sadiq (as), when a poor man came and asked Imam (as) for help. Imam (as) said: ‘Give him some grapes!’ Offered with grapes, he rejected it and asked for money. Imam (as) told him: ‘May Allah grant you!’ The poor man went and returned after a while and asked for the grapes. Imam Sadiq (as) told him again: ‘May Allah grant you!’ Then another poor man came to us and asked for help. Imam Sadiq (as) gave him three beans from the grape brunch. The man took them and said: ‘All praise belongs to the Lord of the worlds who fed me.’ Imam Sadiq (as) gave him two handfuls of grape for the second time. The man thanked Allah again. Then Imam (as) turned to his servant and asked him: ‘How much money do you have with you?’ The servant brought twenty drachmas and Imam (as) gave it to the poor man. Once more, the man said: ‘All Praise belongs to Allah who granted me blessings; the One deity.’ Afterwards, Imam Sadiq (as) put off his own cloak and gave it away to him and told him: ‘Put on this garb!’ Having put on the cloak, the poor man said: ‘All Praise is for Allah who dressed me. May Allah grant you reward!’ The poor man thanked Imam Sadiq (as) and went away.”(1)

The great philosopher and pious scholar, Mullah Mohsin Fayz al-Kashani, in his book Wafi narrates from an infallible Imam: “When a servant finishes

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1- Al-Kafi, 4/ 49, Bab Al-Nawadir, tradition 12; Bihar al-Anwar: 42/47, bab 4, tradition 56; Anis al-Layl: 155.

his prayer and then genuinely reflects and thanks his Lord for all His blessings, Allah addresses His angels: ‘My servant ended his obligatory prayer and is now appreciating Me. What should I grant him?’ The angels reply: ‘Lord! Grant him his wishes!’ They are then addressed: ‘I granted him his wishes.’ Then the angels ask Allah to save the servant in the Last Day, expand his sustenance, and bestow on him righteous children. As long as that servant is thanking Allah in his obeisance, Allah addresses the angels and they pray. Then the angels say: ‘Lord! We asked You to grant Your servant whatever goodness we knew.’ They are then addressed: ‘I know what to grant him next; he appreciated Me, and I will thank him by opening the doors of Blessings to his life.’”

The Remembrance Position

The phrases of remembrance that Allah inspires on the servant after purification of his heart are different from those found in books. The inspired remembrance leads to salvation in this world and the next world and manifests facts for the pious servants that are hidden to other ignorant servants. It is not merely words, rather the means for reaching the nearness of Allah. By inspiration through the words of remembrance, human comes to discern his Lord better, and becomes prepared to devote himself to his Beloved, saying, like Imam Husayn (as):

تَرَکْتُ الخَلْقَ طُرّاً فِی هَواکا

وَأیْتَمْتُ العِیَالَ لِکَیْ أرَاکَا

فَلَوْ قَطَّعْتَنِی بِالحُبِّ اِرْباً

لَمَا مَالَ الفُؤادُ اِلَی سِوَاکَا

I have left all Your creatures for your sake.

And I have orphaned

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my family to meet You

If You tear me to pieces in love,

My heart shall never incline to other than You!”

The inspired remembrance is the one uttered by Imam Al-Sajjad (as) in Khamsa ‘Ashar supplication:

وَآنِسْنَا بِالذِّکْرِ الخَفِیِّ وَاسْتَعْمِلْنَا بِالعَمَلِ الذَّکِیِّ وَالسَّعْیِ المَرْضِیِّ.

And familiarize us with your hidden remembrance, and engage us in virtuous deeds and attempt.(1)

The Prophet of Islam (S) stated:

لاَ یَزَالُ المُؤْمِنُ الَّذِی یَذْکُرُ اللهَ فِی کُلِّ حَالٍ فِی أنْوَارٍ خَمْسٍ: مَدْخَلُهُ نُورٌ وَمَخْرَجُهُ نُورٌ، وَکَلامُهُ نُورٌ، وَغِذَاؤهُ نُورٌ، وَمَنْظَرُهُ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ اِلَی النُّورِ.

A pious believer who always remembers Allah is placed in five illuminated states; his entrance is light, his exit is light, his speech is light, his food is light, and his view in the Day of Judgment is towards light.(2)

For pious favorite servants of Allah, nothing is more sweat than His remembrance, and Allah’s remembrance does not appear deeply in one’s heart except that his heart is cleansed from worldly affections. This purification is only possible through worshipping and avoiding sins and vices.

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّی أَسْألُکَ سُؤَالَ خَاضِعٍ مُّتَذَلِّلٍ خَاشِعٍ أَن تُسَامِحَنِی وَتَرْحَمَنِی وَتَجْعلَنِی بِقَسَمِکَ رَاضِیًا قَانِعًا، وَفِی جَمِیعِ الأَحْوَاِل مُتَوَاضِعًا.

O Allah! Verily I ask You with the asking of a submissive, abased and lowly man to show me forbearance, to have mercy on me and to make me satisfied and content with Your apportionment, and humble in every state.

Four Requests from the Almighty

If a supplication is done in the darkness of night with a humble heart, a submissive appearance and tearful eyes, it is undoubtedly more probable to be accepted. The

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1- Mafatih Al-Janan, Supplication 13.
2- Nafahat al-Layl: 70; Khisal: 1/ 277, tradition 20; Rawdhat Al-Wa’izin, 2/ 291, Majlis fi Zikr Manaqib Ashab Al-A’imma; Bihar al-Anwar, 65/ 17, Bab 15, tradition 24.

Almighty revealed to Prophet Moses (as):

یَا بْنَ عِمْرَانَ! هَبْ لِی مِنْ قَلْبِکَ الخُشُوعَ، وَمِنْ بَدَنِکَ الخُضُوعَ، وَمِنْ عَیْنَیْکَ الدُّمُوعَ فِی ظُلَمِ اللَّیْلِ، وَادْعُنی فَإنَّکَ تَجِدُنِی قَرِیباً مُجِیباً.

O son of Imran! Bring to My Presence submission of your heart, humbleness of your body, and tears of your eyes in the darkness of night and then call Me, you would then find Me near and compliant.(1)

In this section of Kumayl supplication, the supplicant humbly asks Allah four requests and he should hope that his humbleness and submission would bring his supplication to compliance. These four requests are: 1. Allah’s forbearance toward him, 2. His Mercy for him, 3. Satisfaction with Allah’s apportionment, and 4. Humbleness in all states of his life.

The supplicant should bear in mind that based on the principle of

إِنْ أَحْسَنتُمْ أَحْسَنتُمْ لأَنفُسِکُمْ.

If you do good, you will do good for your own souls. (17:7)

Anyone who does good has done it to himself for gaining Allah’s forbearance is not possible but through lenity to His servants, and gaining His Mercy is only possible through compassion to all the Muslim believers and anyone who deserves it. One who is not lenient and merciful to others would not be subject to Allah’s forbearance and Mercy.

Forbearance

Islam has forbidden all Muslims from hostility and jealousy towards each other and cutting ties of kinship, and invited everyone to lenience and compassion toward others. It has considered the believers as moral brothers and presented valuable rights of brotherhood in this regard that are recommended and sometimes

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 67/ 14, Bab 43, tradition 2.

obligatory for them to be observed.

Making moral and brotherhood relationships and continuing it, results in purity from moral vices. Human vices, such as pride, egotism, greed, stinginess, and jealousy avoid compassion and mercy among people and families.

The Messenger of Allah (as), in a significant tradition, has warned people against moral vices and encouraged them to observe brotherhood rights:

لاَ تَدَابَروا وَلاَ تَحَاسَدوا وَلاَ تَقَاطَعوا، وَکُونُوا عِبَادَ اللهِ اِخْواناً؛ اَلمُسْلِمُ أخُو المُسْلِمِ لاَ یَظْلِمُهُ وَلاَ یَحْرِمُهُ وَلاَ یَخْذُلُهُ.

Do not be hostile toward each other, and not be angry with each other, do not be jealous of each other, do not cut ties of friendship, and befriend each other! Muslims are brothers, a Muslim does not oppress his Muslim brothers, does not deprive him from his compassion and his wealth, and does not leave him alone.(1)

He also stated:

مُدَارَاهُ النَّاسِ نِصْفُ الإیمَانِ، وَالرِّفْقُ بِهِمْ نِصْفُ العَیْشِ.

Lenience with people is half the belief and compassion to them is half the life.(2)

And he said:

رَحِمَ اللهُ امْرَءً سَهَّلَ الْبَیْعَ وَسَهَّلَ الشِّرَاءَ وَسَهَّلَ الاقْتِضَاءَ.

May Allah forgive the one who is lenient in buying and selling goods, and in collecting debts.(3)

The Prophet (S) has stated as well:

مَنْ أنْظَرَ مُعْسِراً أو تَرَکَ حَاسَبَهُ اللهُ حِسَاباً یَسِیراً.

One who respites a debtor or leaves him Allah would account for his deeds leniently.(4)

It is also narrated from the Prophet (S):

إنَّ رَجُلاً کَانَ مُسْرِفاً عَلَی نَفْسِهِ، حُوسِبَ فَلَمْ تُوجَدْ لَهُ حَسَنَهٌ، فَقِیلَ لَهُ: هَلْ عَمِلْتَ خَیْراً قَطُّ؟ فَقَالَ: لاَ، إلاَّ أنِّی کُنْتُ رَجُلاً أُدَایِنُ النَّاسَ، فَأقُولُ لِفِتْیَانِی: سَامِحُوا المُوسِرِینَ، وَأَنْظِرُوا المُعْسِرِینَ. فَقَالَ اللهُ تَعَالَی:

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 3/ 329, Kitab ‘Adab Al-Suhbat wa Al-Mu’ashirat.
2- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 3/ 401, Kitab ‘Adab Al-Suhbat wa Al-Mu’ashirat.
3- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 3/186, Kitab ‘Adab Al-Kasb wa Al-Ma’ash.
4- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 3/ 186, Kitab ‘Adab Al-Kasb wa Al-Ma’ash.

فَنَحْنُ أحَقُّ بِذَلِکَ مِنْکَ! فَتَجَاوَزَ اللهُ عَنْهُ وَغَفَرَ لَهُ.

In the Hereafter, a sinner man is called to account and no virtue is found in his letter of deeds to save him. He is asked: ‘Have you ever done a good deed?’ He replies: ‘No, but I lent people money from my wealth and I told the young people around me to be lenient with wealthy debtors and leave poor ones.’ Then the Almighty would say: ‘I am more lenient than him.’ So Allah would forgive his sins.(1)

Hammad Ibn Othman says: “Someone came to Imam Sadiq (as) and complained about one of Imam’s disciples. That disciple came there after a while and Imam (as) asked him: ‘Why does this man complain about you?’ He said: ‘He is complaining about me because I collected the money I had lent him to the last drachma.’ Imam Sadiq (as) got angry and then said: ‘Do you suppose it not bad to get your money back completely? Allah has described the behavior of believers in the Holy Qur’an:’ Those who… fear the terrible reckoning. (13:21)’ Do you think they fear Allah’s oppression on them in reckoning their deeds? No, by Allah that they do not fear except evil reckoning. Anyone who does this has done a bad deed.’”

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

Beware that there are containers of Allah’s Mercy on the earth, which are people’s hearts. The most favorite of these containers are the purest, strongest, and the most lenient ones. Favorite hearts are

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1- Ibid.

pure of sins, strong in belief, and lenient with religious brothers.(1)

In other traditions, the Prophet (S) stated:

أمَرَنِی رَبِّی بِمُدَارَاهِ النَّاسِ کَما أمَرَنِی بِأدَاءِ الفَرَائِضِ.

My Lord has ordered me to be lenient with people, as he has ordered me to do obligatory deeds.(2)

ثَلاَثٌ مَنْ لَمْ یَکُنَّ فِیهِ لَمْ یَتِمَّ لَهُ عَمَلٌ: وَرَعٌ یَحْجِزُهُ عَنْ مَعَاصِی اللهِ، وَخُلُقٌ یُدَارِیِ بِهِ النَّاسَ وَحُلُمٌ یَرُدُّ بِهِ جَهْلَ الجَاهِلِ.

Anyone who does not have these three things has accomplished no deed; the piety that prevents him from wrongdoing, the morality that leads him to be lenient with people, and the patience that stands against the ignorance of the foolish.(3)

إنَّ الرِّفْقَ لَمْ یُوضَعْ عَلَی شَیْءٍ اِلاَّ زَانَهُ وَلاَ نُزِعَ مِنْ شَیْءٍ إلاَّ شَانَهُ.

Lenience is not placed in anything except that adorns it, and is not removed from anything except that aggravates it.(4)

لَوْ کَانَ الرِّفْقُ خَلْقاً یُرَی مَا کَانَ مِمَّا خَلَقَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ شَیْءٌ أحْسَنُ مِنْهُ.

If peoples’ lenience was discernible, it was more beautiful than any of Allah’s creatures.(5)

It is narrated from Amir Al-Mo’minin (as):

ثَمَرَهُ العَقْلِ مُدَارَاهُ النَّاسِ.

The fruit of wisdom is lenience with people.(6)

مُدَارَاهُ الرَّجُلِ مِنْ أفْضَلِ الأعْمَالِ.

Lenience with people is among the best deeds.(7)

دَارِِ النَّاسَ تَسْتَمْتِعْ بِإخَائِهِمْ، وَألْقِهِمْ بِالبِشْرِ تُمِتْ أضْغَانَهُمْ.

Behave leniently with people to benefit from their brotherhood, and be kind to them to eliminate their hatred.(8)

According to the Messenger of Allah (S) the lenience of Allah to His servants is the result of the servants’ lenience with other people:

إسْمَحْ یُسْمَحْ لَکَ.

Be lenient with people to get subjected to lenience.(9)

Lenience and mercy are attributes

p: 160


1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’ 3/322, Kitab ‘Adab al-Suhbah wa al-Mu’asharah, Bab 2.
2- Tafsir Mo’in: 365.
3- Al-Kafi: 2/ 116, Bab Al-Modarat, tradition 1.
4- Al-Kafi: 2/ 119, Bab Al-Rifq, tradition 6; Tafsir Mo’in: 365.
5- Al-Kafi: 2/ 120, Bab Al-Rifq, tradition 13.
6- Ghurar Al-Hikam: 53, tradition 416.
7- Ghurar Al-Hikam: 445, tradition 10174.
8- Ghurar Al-Hikam: 445, tradition 10180.
9- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 3/ 186, Kitab ‘Adab Al-Kasb wa Al-Ma’ash, Bab 1.

of Allah. As the Prophet (S) stated:

تَخَلَّقُوا بِأخْلاَقِ اللهِ.

Imitate the attributes of Allah.(1)

It is worthy for people to be adorned with Allah’s attributes, so that they would be prosperous in the two worlds.

Mercy

Much was said about Allah’s Mercy on the first chapter of the book. It was pointed out that Allah’s specific Mercy is subjected to people who are obedient to Him and merciful to His servants. They should avoid annoying and oppressing other people and violating their rights. They should always keep in mind the principle:

إرْحَمْ تُرْحَمْ.

Be merciful to get subjected to others’ mercy.(2)

This means that if one does not accomplish Allah’s orders and obligatory deeds correctly, does not avoid sins, and is not kind to people, he should not expect Allah’s Compassion.

Important traditions are narrated in some valuable books about Allah’s Mercy, some of which come here:

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

إنَّ للهِ تَعَالَی مِائَهَ رَحْمَهٍ أنْزَلَ مِنْهَا رَحْمَهً وَاحِدَهً بَیْنَ الجِنِّ وَالإنْسِ وَالطَّیْرِ وَالبَهَائِمِ وَالهَوامِّ؛ فَبِهَا یَتَعَاطَفُونَ وَبِهَا یَتَرَاحَمُونَ، وَأخَّرَ تِسْعاً وَتِسْعِینَ رَحْمَهً یَرْحَمُ اللهُ بِهَا عِبَادَهُ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ.

Allah’s mercy has one hundred aspects, one of which He has revealed among his creatures like humans, jinns, animals, and birds and they have affection for each other by that single aspect of Mercy. Allah will have Mercy on his servants on the Day of Judgment by the other ninety nine aspects.(3)

The Prophet of Islam (S) said:

إنَّ اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ یَقُولُ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ لِلْمُؤمِنِینَ: هَلْ أحْبَبْتُمْ لِقَائِی؟ فَیَقُولُونَ: نَعَمْ یَا رَبَّنَا. فَیَقُولُ: لمَ؟ فَیَقُولُونَ: رَجَوْنَا عَفْوَکَ وَمَغْفِرَتَکَ. فَیَقُولُ: قَدْ

p: 161


1- Bihar al-Anwar: 58/ 129.
2- Anis al-Layl: 166.
3- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 384, Kitab Zikr Al-Mawt wa ma Ba’dah, Bab 8.

أوْجَبْتُ لَکُمْ مَغْفِرَتِی.

The Almighty Allah would reveal to the believers on the Last Day: Did you like My countenance? They would confirm it. Allah would ask them the reason, and they would say: Because we were hopeful of Your forgiveness. Then Allah would say: I obliged My forgiveness for you.(1)

It is narrated from Prophet Mohammad (as):

یَقُولُ اللهُ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ: أخْرِجُوا مِنَ النَّارِ مَنْ ذَکَرَنِی یَوْماً أوْ خَافَنِی فِی مَقَامٍ.

The Lord of the worlds would say on the Day of Resurrection: Bring out of Fire whoever has remembered Me only one day, or has feared Me for something.(2)

The Prophet (S) also stated:

اللهُ أرْحَمُ بِعَبْدِهِ المُؤْمِنِ مِنَ الوَالِدَهِ الشَّفِیقَهِ بِوَلَدِهَا.

The Almighty Allah is more compassionate to His servant than a kind father.(3)

Based on the words of the infallible Imams (as), it is understood that what attracts Allah’s Compassion is indeed worship, obedience, avoiding sins, and kindness to others. It is narrated from the Prophet (S):

الرَّاحِمُون یَرْحَمُهُمُ اللهُ. إرْحَمُوا مَنْ فِی الأرْضِ یَرْحَمْکُمْ مَنْ فِی السَّمَاءِ.

Allah would compassionate the compassionate people. Compassionate anyone on the earth, so that Allah would compassionate you.(4)

The author of Anis al-Layl quoted from the book Zinat al-Majalis that Moses, in his prayers,(as) asked Allah: “What attribute of mine made You content with me?” He was replied: “When you were grassing Jethro’s sheep on a summer day, a lamb ran away from the cattle. You chased it a long way until you got tired and thirsty. When you found the lamb you caught it and told it: ‘You have

p: 162


1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 384, Kitab Zikr Al-Mawt wa ma Ba’dah, Bab 8.
2- Ibid.
3- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 385, Kitab Zikr Al-Mawt wa ma Ba’dah, Bab 8.
4- Mostadrak Al-Wasa’il: 9/ 55, Bab Istihbab Al-Tarahom, tradition 10187.

caused suffering for yourself and me.’ Then you took it back to the cattle. Because of your kindness to that lamb I chose you as My prophet and appointed you as My messenger.”(1)

Someone told the Prophet (S): “I would like my Lord to have Mercy on me.” He was responded:

إرْحَمْ نَفْسَکَ وَارْحَمْ خَلْقَ اللهِ یَرْحَمْکَ اللهُ.

Have mercy on yourself and Allah’s creatures, so that He would have Mercy on you.(2)

Prophet Mohammad (as) stated:

تَعَرَّضُوا لِرَحْمَهِ اللهِ بِمَا أمَرَکُمْ مِنْ طَاعَتِهِ.

Make yourselves subject to Allah’s Mercy by obeying Him.(3)

The Commander of the Believers, Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

أبْلَغُ مَا تُسْتَدَرُّ بِهِ الرَّحْمَهُ أنْ تُضْمِرَ لِجَمِیعِ النَّاسِ الرَّحْمَهَ.

The major factor bringing about Allah’s embracing Mercy is intending kindness for all people.(4)

He also said:

بِالعَفْوِ تُنَزَّلُ الرَّحْمَهُ.

By forgiving people Mercy is revealed.(5)

Besides, he stated:

رَحْمَهُ الضُّعَفَاءِ تَسْتَنْزِلُ الرَّحْمَهَ.

Kindness to the disabled causes Allah’s Compassion.(6)

Satisfaction

The hidden and apparent creatures who have been created, placed in their right positions and set towards their right goals by the Wisdom, Will and Mercy of the Sacred Entity has also been provided with sustenance in accord with their lifestyle, dignity and activities for acquiring sustenance.

وَمَا مِنْ دَابَّهٍ فِی الأَرْضِ إِلاَّ عَلَی اللَّهِ رِزْقُهَا.

There is no moving creature on earth but its sustenance depends on Allah. (11:6)

The Compassionate provides His servants the sustenance, as appropriate, in two ways; expanded for some and narrow for some others.

إِنَّ رَبَّکَ یَبْسُطُ الرِّزْقَ لِمَنْ یَشَاءُ وَیَقْدِرُ إِنَّهُ کَانَ بِعِبَادِهِ خَبِیرًا بَصِیرًا.

Surely your Lord outspreads and straitens His provision unto whom He wills; surely He is aware

p: 163


1- Anis al-Layl: 166.
2- Mo’in Tafsir: 580.
3- Majmu’iyi Worram: 2/119; Mo’in Tafsir: 580.
4- Ghurar Al-Hikam: 450, tradition 10344; Mo’in tafsir: 580.
5- Ghurar Al-Hikam: 246, tradition 5053; Mo’in Tafsir: 580.
6- Ghurar Al-Hikam: 449, tradition 10333, Mo’in Tafsir: 580.

of and sees His servants. (30:17)

The Benevolent has set different ways for His servants to get Halal (lawful) sustenance, like ranching, farming, business, industry, and other beneficial professions that are the result of thought and activity. He has set no one’s sustenance through unlawful activities, such as theft, plunder, looting, bribery, and usurpation. In fact, what they get unlawfully is diminished from their lawful sustenance.

The Holy Qur’an and traditions have encouraged people to gain sustenance through legal works. They consider the expansion or narrowness of lawful sustenance as Allah’s expedience, which should be accepted wholeheartedly by humans.

Islam has obliged seeking lawful sustenance, considering it as a great worship. Suffering the body and enduring difficulties in this way is also considered the key and path to many values. Many traditions are narrated from the Prophet (S) in this regard:

طَلَبُ الحَلاَلِ فَرِیضَهٌ عَلَی کُلِّ مُسْلِمٍ وَمُسْلِمَهٍ.

Seeking lawful sustenance is obligatory for all Muslim men and women.(1)

طَلَبُ الحَلاَلِ فَرِیضَهٌ بَعْدَ الفَرِیضَهِ.

Setting out for getting lawful sustenance is an obligatory deed after other obligatory deeds.(2)

طَلَبُ الحَلاَلِ جِهَادٌ.

Seeking out lawful sustenance is like Jihad (holy war) in Allah’s way.(3)

The traditions include some advice on how to increase the sustenance. Once a man asked the Messenger of Allah (S) how he could increase his sustenance. Prophet Mohammad (S) stated:

دُمْ عَلَی الطَّهَارَهِ یُوَسَّعْ عَلَیْکَ فِی الرِّزْقِ.

Keep on purity and cleanness and your sustenance would be expanded.(4)

Amir Al-Mo’minin (as) said:

مُوَاسَاهُ الأخِ فِی اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ تَزِیدُ فِی الرِّزْقِ.

Helping religious brothers increases sustenance.(5)

اِسْتِعْمَالُ الأمَانَهِ یَزِیدُ فِی الرِّزْقِ.

Trustworthiness enlarges sustenance.(6)

The

p: 164


1- Jami’ Al-Akhbar: 139, Al-Fasl Al-Tasi’ wa Al-Tis’un; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2058, Al-Rizq, tradition 7211.
2- Kanz Al-Ommal: 9203; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2058, Al-Rizq, tradition 7212.
3- Kanz Al-Ommal: 9205; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/2058, Al-Rizq, tradition 7214.
4- Kanz Al-Ommal: 44154; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2056, Al-Rizq, tradition 7194.
5- Khisal: 2/ 504, tradition 2; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2056, Al-Rizq, tradition 7191.
6- Mishkat al-Anwar: 128, Al-Fasl Al-Sadis; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2056, Al-Rizq, tradition 7192.

fifth infallible Imam, Imam al-Baqir (as) stated:

عَلَیْکَ بِالدُّعَاءِ لإخْوَانِکَ بِظَهْرِ الغَیْبِ فَإنَّهُ یُهِیلُ الرِّزْقَ.

Pray for your religious brothers in their absence because it descends an extended sustenance for you.(1)

Furthermore, Imam Sadiq (as) said:

مَنْ حَسَّنَ بِرَّهُ أهْلَ بَیْتِهِ زِیدَ فِی رِزْقِهِ.

One who serves his family nicely his sustenance would be expanded.(2)

حُسْنُ الخُلُقِ یَزِیدُ فِی الرِّزْقِ.

Affability increases sustenance.(3)

Attempt in getting lawful sustenance is considered an important Islamic worship. The Messenger of Allah (S) states:

مَنْ أکَلَ مِنْ کَدِّ یَدِهِ کَانَ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ فِی عِدَادِ الأنْبِیَاءِ وَیَأخُذُ ثَوَابَ الأنْبِیَاءِ.

One who gains sustenance through his own endeavor is placed among the prophets and receives their reward on the Day of Resurrection.(4)

مَنْ أکَلَ مِنْ کَدِّ یَدِهِ نَظَرَ اللهُ اِلَیْهِ بِالرَّحْمَهِ ثُمَّ لاَ یُعَذِّبُهُ أبَداً.

One who gains sustenance by his own effort, Allah would have Mercy on him and does not punish him.(5)

Imam al-Ridha (as) stated:

إنَّ الَّذِی یَطْلُبُ مِنْ فَضْلٍ یَکُفُّ بِهِ عِیَالَهُ أعْظَمُ أجْراً مِنَ المُجَاهِدِ فِی سَبِیلِ اللهِ.

Surely one who seeks Allah’s sustenance through his lawful effort in order to maintain his family from poorness and need would have more reward than a campaigner in Allah’s way.(6)

Prophet Muhammad (S) said:

العِبَادَهُ عَشَرَهُ أجْزَاءٍ؛ تِسْعَهُ أجْزَاءٍ فِی طَلَبِ الحَلاَلِ.

Worship has ten sections nine sections of which are in seeking lawful sustenance.(7)

However, human sustenance is a reality that is provided on earth and everyone has been set with a definite amount. This definite amount is either extended or narrowed, according to Allah’s expedience. The extendedness of one’s sustenance does not imply his amiability before Allah nor does one’s

p: 165


1- Bihar al-Anwar: 90/386, Bab 26, tradition 17; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2056, Al-Rizq, tradition 7193.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 66/ 407, Bab 38, tradition 117; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2056, Al-Rizq, tradition 7185.
3- Mishkat al-Anwar: 221, Al-Fasl Al-Awwal; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2056, Al-Rizq, tradition 7187.
4- Jami’ Al-Akhbar: 139, Al-Fasl Al-Tasi’ wa Al-Tis’un; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2060, Al-Rizq, tradition 7218.
5- Jami’ Al-Akhbar: 139, Al-Fasl Al-Tasi’ wa Al-Tis’un; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2060, Al-Rizq, tradition 7217.
6- Al-Kafi: 5/ 88, Bab Man Kadda…, tradition 2; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2058, Al-Rizq, tradition 7204.
7- Jami’ Al-Akhbar: 139, Al-Fasl Al-Tasi’ wa Al-Tis’un; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2058, Al-Rizq, tradition 7202.

narrow sustenance mean that he is disfavored; rather the extension or the narrowing of sustenance is Allah’s test of gratitude for the rich and of patience for the poor. Thus the grateful and patient servants would be rewarded in this way. The rich would also be rewarded by granting to the poor and the poor by maintaining face and patience for the certain fate.

One who has an extended sustenance should know that if he does not spend his money in true and lawful paths would be subjected to worldly and heavenly chastisement. The one who has a narrow sustenance should also consider that if he does not tolerate poverty, he would also be chastised. Imam ‘Ali (as) states:

وَقَدَّرَ الأرْزَاقَ فَکَثَّرَهَا وَقَلَّلَهَا وَقَسَّّمَهَا عَلَی الضِّیقِ وَالسَّعَهِ فَعَدَلَ فِیهَا لِیَبْتَلِیَ مَنْ أرَادَ بِمَیْسُورِهَا وَمَعْسُورِهَا وَلِیَخْتَبِرَ بِذَلِکَ الشُّکْرَ وَالصَّبْرَ مِنْ غَنِیِّهَا وَفَقِیرِهَا.

… And Allah destined people’s sustenance and made it extended for some and narrow for others and he divided sustenance among people justly to test anyone He will with expansion and narrowness of sustenance, thus examine the rich for gratefulness and the poor for tolerance of difficulty.(1)

The Muslim believer should, on the other hand, be content with Allah’s fair distribution of sustenance and not be angry at his portion of sustenance. The believers should follow their leader, Imam ‘Ali (as), who prayed Allah for safety in this world and the next world.

Imam °asan Mojtaba (as) says in this regard:

کَیْفَ یَکُونُ المُؤْمِنُ مُؤمِناً وَهُوَ یَسْخَطُ قِسْمَهُ وَیُحَقِّرُ مَنْزِلَتَهُ وَالحَاکِمُ عَلَیْهِ اللهُ؟

How can a

p: 166


1- Nahj Al-Balagha: Sermon 91, wa min Khotbat lahu ta’rifo bi khotbati Al-ashbah…

Muslim believer be discontent with his portion of sustenance and considers his position low, while the One who dominates all his endeavors is Allah?(1)

The Messenger of Allah (S) asked Gabriel: “What is the exposition of content?” He answered:

الرَّاضِی لاَ یَسْخَطُ عَلَی سَیِّدِهِ: أصَابَ مِنَ الدُّنْیَا أمْ لَمْ یُصِبْ، وَلاَ یَرْضَی لِنَفْسِهِ بِالیَسِیرِ مِنَ العَمَلِ.

The content servant does not take anger over his Lord, whether he possesses something in the world or not, and he is not content with his own trivial deeds.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

اِرْضَ بِمَا قَسَمَ اللهُ لَکَ تَکُنْ غَنِیّاً.

If you are content with Allah’s sustenance, you would get needless.(3)

Amir Al-Mo’minin (as) said:

مَنْ رَضِیَ مِنَ اللهِ بِمَا قَسَمَ لَهُ اسْتَرَاحَ بَدَنُهُ.

If one is content with what Allah has allocated to him his body would rest.(4)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَنْ لَمْ یَرْضَ بِمَا قَسَمَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ اتَّهَمَ اللهَ فِی قَضَائِهِ.

Whoever is not content with what Allah, out of expedience, has set as his sustenance has charged Him in His Government and Expediency.(5)

When Amir Al-Mo’minin (as) was asked about the exposition to the holy verse:

…فَلَنُحْیِیَنَّهُ حَیَاهً طَیِّبَهً…

‘We shall assuredly give him to live a goodly life. (16:97)’

He replied:

The goodly life is contentment in life.

إنْتَقِمْ مِنْ حِرْصِکَ بِالقُنُوعِ کَمَا تَنْتَقِمُ مِنْ عَدُوِّکَ بِالقَصَاصِ.

Fight against your greed, which leads you to the unlawful and destroys your belief, by means of your contentment with Allah’s sustenance, as you take revenge from your enemy by retaliation.(6)

The teachings of the infallible Imams (as) signify that greed and avarice does not increase lawful sustenance and wealth, but

p: 167


1- Mishkat al-Anwar: 34, Al-Fasl Al-Sabi’; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2090, Al-Riza, tradition 7295.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 66/373, Bab 38, tradition 19.
3- Khisal: 1/ 169, tradition 122; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2092, Al-Riza, tradition 7312.
4- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 139, Bab 63, tradition 27; Mizan al-°ikmah: 5/ 2092, Al-Riza, tradition 7315.
5- Bihar al-Anwar: 75/ 201, Bab 23, tradition 34.
6- Ghurar Al-Hikam: 391, tradition 8981.

it rather leads to unlawful acts that weaken belief, destroy moral principles, and disgraces humans. On the other hand, contentment with lawful sustenance and predestined life, is an infinite treasure and a guarantee for human world and Hereafter. The Messenger of Allah (S) sates:

خِیَارُ أُمِّتِی القَانِعُ، وَشِرَارُهُمُ الطَّامِعُ.

The good people of my nation are the content ones, and the bad ones are greedy.(1)

Imam al-Baqir (as) said: “‘Ali (as) ate the most inferior type of date that was sold and then drank water. Then he struck his belly and said:

مَنْ أدْخَلَهُ بَطْنُهُ النَّارَ فَأبْعَدَهُ اللهُ.

‘One whose stomach drags him to the Hell is away from Allah’s Mercy.’

And then recited a poem denoting that one who fulfills his lust would be defamed.”(2)

Imam al-Baqir and Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَنْ قَنِعَ بِمَا رَزَقَهُ اللهُ فَهُوَ مِنْ أغْنَی النَّاسِ.

One who is satisfied with his portion of Allah’s sustenance is the most needless of people.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as) also stated:

إقْنَعْ بِمَا قَسَمَ اللهُ لَکَ وَلاَ تَنْظُرْ إلَی مَا عِنْدَ غَیْرِکَ، وَلاَ تَتَمَنَّ مَا لَسْتَ نَائِلَهُ، فَإنَّهُ مَنْ قَنِعَ شَبِعَ، وَمَنْ لَمْ یَقْنَعْ لَمْ یَشْبَعْ، وَخُذْ حَظَّکَ مِنْ آخِرَتِکَ.

Be content with what Allah has set as your sustenance and do not look at others’. Do not greed people’s wealth and do not wish what you cannot gain. Undoubtedly, one who is content is satisfied and gets reward in the Hereafter. And the discontent did not satisfy.(4)

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

کَیْفَ یَسْتَطِیعُ عَلَی صَلاحِ نَفْسِهِ مَنْ لاَ یَقْنَعُ بِالقَلِیلِ؟

Whoever is not content with his narrow sustenance and with trivial possessions

p: 168


1- Kanz Al-Ommal: 7095; Mizan al-Hikmah: 10/ 5054, Al-Qina’at, tradition 17141.
2- Kanz Al-’Ommal: 8741; Mizan al-Hikmah: 10/ 5054, Al-Qina’at, tradition 17143.
3- Al-Kafi: 2/ 139, Bab Al-Qina’at, tradition 9.
4- Al-Kafi: 8/ 243, tradition 337.

is not able to discipline himself.(1)

Modesty

Modesty is a great moral virtue that helps humans reach spiritual positions. It is so great a trait that Amir Al-Mo’minin asks it from Allah in the Kumayl supplication. If one applies it to all his deeds, he can obtain goodness in this world and the Hereafter, be safe from Allah’s chastisement, and reach His nearness.

Modesty should be considered in two aspects; one is before Allah and the other is before the people.

Being modest before Allah is to accept all His orders regarding worldly and heavenly issues wholeheartedly which are stated in the Qur’an, Prophet’s tradition, and Imams’ speech. Then these orders should be applied to real life expereinces.

Modesty before the people is not boasting about one’s self to his Muslim brothers and consider oneself superior to them. Modesty is chastening no one, respecting and helping anyone, and forgiving others’ mistakes.

Modesty in Qur’an

The holy Qur’an not only invites everyone to be modest before Allah, but also asks all the Muslims to be modest before other believers.

The holy Qur’an even asks the Prophet (S), whose position is greater than all the humans and jinns, to be modest before the believers:

وَاخْفِضْ جَنَاحَکَ لِلْمُؤْمِنِینَ.

… but lower thy wing (in gentleness) to the Believers. (15:88)

تِلْکَ الدَّارُ الآخِرَهُ نَجْعَلُهَا لِلَّذِینَ لاَ یُرِیدُونَ عُلُوًّا فِی الأَرْضِ وَلاَ فَسَادًا وَالْعَاقِبَهُ لِلْمُتَّقِینَ.

That House of the Hereafter We shall give to those who intend not high-handedness or mischief on earth: and the End is (best) for the righteous. (28:83)

The holy Qur’an clearly stipulates that the Almighty

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 238, tradition 4806.

does not favor the arrogant, and that such people are placed in the Inferno.

إِنَّهُ لاَ یُحِبُّ الْمُسْتَکْبِرِینَ.

Verily He loveth not the arrogant. (16:23)

أَلَیْسَ فِی جَهَنَّمَ مَثْوًی لِلْمُتَکَبِّرِینَ.

Is there not in Hell as abode for the Haughty? (39:60)

Modesty in Traditions

It is narrated from the Messenger of Allah (S) who said:

مَا لِی لاَ أرَی عَلَیْکُمْ حَلاوَهَ العِبَادَهِ؟… التَّوَاضُعَ.

“How come I don’t see the sweetness of worship in you?” “What is the sweetness of worship?” he was asked. The Prophet (S) replied: Modesty!(1)

Amir al-Mu’minin, Imam ‘Ali (as), after pointing out the modesty of previous believers before Allah and other Muslims, advises people:

وَلَکِنَّهُ سُبْحَانَهُ کَرَّهَ إلَیْهِمُ التَّکَابُرَ وَرَضِیَ لَهُمُ التَّوَاضُعَ، فَألْصَقُوا بِالأرْضِ خُدُودَهُمْ وَعَفَّرُوا فِی التُّرَابِ وُجُوهَهُمْ وَخَفَضُوا أجْنِحَتَهُمْ لِلمُؤْمِنِینَ.

The Almighty made them disfavor pride, and favored modesty for them. So they touched the earth with their faces for showing service to Allah, and showed respect and modesty to all the Muslims.(2)

He also stated:

عَلَیْکَ بِالتَّوَاضُعِ، فَإنَّهُ مِنْ أعْظَمِ العِبَادَهِ.

Befriend modesty, since it is a great worship.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as) said about the amount of modesty:

التَّوَاضُعُ أنْ تَرْضَی مِنَ المَجْلِسِ بِدُونِ شَرَفِکَ وَأنْ تُسَلِّمَ عَلَی مَنْ لاَقَیْتَ وَأنْ تَتْرُکَ المِرَاءَ وَإنْ کُنْتَ مُحِقّاً؛ وَرَأسُ الخَیْرِ التَّوَاضُعُ.

Modesty is contentment with your seating position which may not be according to your position, that you say hello to everyone you see, that you avoid arguments in discussions even if you are right. Modesty is the core of every goodness.(4)

Prophet Muhammad (S) said:

إنَّ أفْضَلَ النَّاسِ عَبْداً مَنْ تَوَاضَعَ عَنْ رِفْعَهٍ.

Surely the best people in worship are those who are the most modest

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1- Majmu’yi Wurram: 1/ 201, Bayan Fazilat Al-Tawazu’; Mizan al-Hikmah: 14/ 6846, Al-Tawazu’, tradition 21825.
2- Nahj Al-Balagha: Sermon 192, wa min khutbat lahu tussama Al-qasi’a.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 72/119, Bab 51, tradition 5.
4- Bihar al-Anwar: 72/ 123, Bab 51, tradition 20.

ones and are in the highest positions.(1)

He also stated:

إنَّ التَّوَاضُعَ یَزِیدُ صَاحِبَهُ رِفْعَهً؛ فَتَوَاضَعُوا یَرْفَعْکُمُ اللهُ.

Modesty raises human position. So be modest, so that Allah would make you dignified.(2)

Scholars of ethics have considered arrogance as extravagance, contempt before everyone as waste, and modesty as a Golden Mine, which is but a humane attribute.

It is narrated from the infallible Imams that modesty before Allah is worshipping Him wholeheartedly, associating with people justly, and equaling oneself to others in terms of human rights.

The Modesty of the Messenger of Allah

The great Prophet of Islam (S) united with the poor and the needy with humility. He greeted everyone, even the children, sat on the ground, befriended people in the streets and bazaars, and asked them about their lives. He rode a regular roadster, milked the sheep, washed his clothes, ate with his servants, and lived ordinarily among other people.

The Modesty of Imam ‘Ali

Amir al-Mu’minin (as) lived an ordinary life, too. Ibn Abbas says: One day I went to Imam ‘Ali (as) and saw him patching his shoe. I told him: “This shoe does not worth pitching.” Imam (as) stated:

وَاللهِ، لَهِیَ أحَبُّ إلَیَّ مِنْ إمْرَتِکُمْ، إلاَّ أنْ أُقِیمَ حَقّاً أوْ أدْفَعَ بَاطِلاً.

By Allah that this shoe is dearer to me than your world, if I take power in it and trample some rights. If I ever have a government, I like to establish the truth and demolish any untruth via it.

Ibn Abbas continues: “Imam ‘Ali (as) patched his clothes himself and rode an ordinary roadster.”(3)

The Modesty of Prophet Solomon

Prophet Solomon (as) was granted with such splendor and greatness that

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 74/ 181, Bab 8, tradition 15.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 121, Bab Al-Tawazu’, tradition 1; Mizan al-Hikmah: 14/ 6856, Al-Tawazu’, tradition 21872.
3- Tazkiri-yi Ibn Jowzi: 67.

no one else in this regard was his counterpart on earth, but he was so modest and just that even a weak ant could judge his behavior and take its right from him.

One day an ant was moving on Solomon’ hand when he took the ant and put it down on the ground. He did not think the ant might object to this. However, the enormity of his modesty even dared the ant to speak before him: “What are you proud of? Why are you such an arrogant person? Don’t you know I am a servant of Allah just as you are? Are we different from each other in terms of His worship that you have behave towards me in this way?” Solomon was deeply affected by the ant’s frankness. He got anxious about Allah’s judgment on the Day of Resurrection and thus fainted. When he was sober again he called the ant. But Solomon didn’t mean to punish the ant for its frank criticizing. He was a divine man of prophethood and was adorned with all ethical goodness and humane perfection. He was actually happy with the ant’s initiative, because it showed that everyone in his kingdom was free to voice their opinions and oppose. He asked the ant: “What made you oppose me so frankly?” The ant said: “My body is very fragile, so when you took me and dropped me on the ground, pain ran through my entire body and this made me oppose you.” Solomon said:

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“I apologize for bothering your body. I didn’t do it on purpose, though, so please forgive me!”

When Solomon, a powerful king and a divine prophet, behaves even a little imperfectly he gets sad and apologizes a weak ant. The ant told Solomon: “I forgive you, provided that your longing for this world is not for mere enjoyment but you desire wealth for helping your people and not wasting it and to support any deprived person who seeks help from you.”

Solomon whose heart was full of mercy and compassion toward those inferior to him, accepted the terms stipulated by the ant, so the ant forgave him.(1)

اللَّهُمَّ وَأَسْألُکَ سُؤَالَ مَنِ اشْتَدَّتْ فَاقَتُهُ

O Allah! I ask You with the asking of one whose indigence in extreme.

Allah; the True Owner

When reading this part of the supplication, the supplicant should observe two facts, based on the Qur’anic verses and the traditions. The first fact is that there is no Owner and no Absolute Sufficient, except Allah. The second one is that the essence of humans and all other creatures’ is based on need and dependence

It is He, who established the world independently and created all kinds of creatures in it with their needs, placing them in their appropriate positions. He is the One who created His creatures, out of Mercy and none of them can oppose Him but surrender to His supreme Power. He can annihilate all His creatures at once, just as He had created them before. His Mercy is so expanded that everyone needs it and

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1- Qisas Al-’Anbia’ Tha’labi: 288.

should be hopeful of it.

While the obvious needs of the creatures are on one hand, the continuation of Allah’s Compassion in all ages and conditions are on the other, which are clear arguments for Allah’s Independence. He is the Creator, the Owner, the Provider, the Generous, the Forgiver, the Shaper, and the Merciful and has no partner.

Those who are engaged in and satisfied with worldly position and wealth are unaware of their need and dependence to Allah. They feel independent that is in fact the result of their ignorance. It also takes them away and deprives them of supplicating to the Almighty for beseeching their needs. In fact, their life is unfortunate and devoid of divine blessings, like the savages and the beasts.

The Holy Qur’an states about the Absolute Independent:

وَلِلَّهِ مُلْکُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَاللَّهُ عَلَی کُلِّ شَیْءٍ قَدِیرٌ.

To Allah belongeth the dominion of the heavens and the earth; and Allah hath power over all things. (3:189)

وَلِلَّهِ مُلْکُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَمَا بَیْنَهُمَا وَإِلَیْهِ الْمَصِیرُ.

Allah’s is the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them, and unto Him is the final goal of all. (5:18)

لَهُ مُلْکُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ، یُحْیِ وَیُمِیتُ، وَهُوَ عَلَی کُلِّ شَیْءٍ قَدِیرٌ.

To Him belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth; it is He Who gives life and Death; and He has Power over all things. (57:2)

وَلِلَّهِ مُلْکُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ، یَغْفِرُ لِمَنْ یَشَاءُ وَیُعَذِّبُ مَنْ یَشَاءُ.

Allah’s is the dominion of the heavens and the earth; He forgives anyone He likes and chastises anyone

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He like. (48:14)

یَا أَیُّهَا النَّاسُ! أَنْتُمْ الْفُقَرَاءُ إِلَی اللَّهِ، وَاللَّهُ هُوَ الْغَنِیُّ الْحَمِیدُ.

O people! All of you are dependent upon Allah, and only He is the Needless. (35:15)

Is human essence anything but need and poverty? What power does he have in continuing life, quitting it, gaining advantages, or preventing disadvantages? Allah has created him and granted him continuity in life. He grants him advantages and removes disadvantages from him. So why shouldn’t he go to his Lord and wholeheartedly call for help on a Friday night?

The most beautiful and beneficial state of a human is the state of praying in which he requests from Allah, the Needless.

وَأَنزَلَ بِکَ عِنْدَ الشَّدَائِدِ حَاجَتَهُ

O Allah! I ask You with the asking of one who has stated to You in difficulties his need.

The Merciful obviously knows all about His servant’s needs and wants, and is aware of his difficulties, and can very fulfil or remove them. But He wishes for His servant (based on the Qur’anic verses,) to state his needs, pray to Him, and worship Him, so that Allah solves his problems and difficulties, eliminates calamities, and saves him from misfortunes. Then He would fulfill His servant’s demand, out of Mercy, loading him with His blessings.

It is Allah’s desire for his servant to state his needs which is in fact a form of worship and obedience to Him. Isn’t it the case that Allah has ordered His servants to pray and has guaranteed fulfilling it?

Praying, supplicating, and stating the wants are not only

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one form of worshipping and obeying Allah but are, in fact, the core of worship.

Allah does not wish His servant to turn to sources other than Him, in case of difficulties and calamities in order ask his needs from them, or request the solution of his problem.

In a Divine tradition, narrated in various lofty books, important issues and valuable facts are stated in this regard:

أیَأمُلُ عَبْدِی فِی الشَّدَائِدِ غَیْرِی؟ وَالشَّدَائِدُ بِیَدِی، وَیَرْجُو سِوَایَ؟ وَأنَا الغَنِیُّ الجَوَادُ، وَأبْوَابُ الحَوَائِجِ عِنْدِی، وَبِیَدِی مَفَاتِیحُهَا وَهِیَ مُغْلَقَهٌ؛ فَمَا لِی أرَی عَبْدِی مُعْرِضاً عَنِّی وَقَدْ أعْطَیْتُهُ بِجُودِی وَکَرَمِی مَا لَمْ یَسْألْنِی؛ فَأعْرَضَ عَنِّی وَسَألَ فِی حَوَائِجِهِ غَیْرِی، وَأنَا اللهُ لاَ إلَهَ إلاَّ أنَا؛ أبْتَدِئُ بِالعَطِیَّهِ مِنْ غَیْرِ مَسْألَهٍ؛ أَفَأُسْئَلُ فَلا أجُودُ؟ ألَیْسَ الجُودُ وَالکَرَمُ لِی؟ ألَیْسَ الدُّنْیَا وَالآخِرَهُ بِیَدِی؟ فَلَوْ أنَّ کُلَّ أهْلِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأرْضِ سَألَنِی مِثْلَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأرْضِ وَأعْطَیْتُهُ مَا نَقَصَ ذَلِکَ مِنْ مُلْکِی جَنَاحَ بَعُوضَهٍ! فَیَا بُؤساً لِمَنْ أعْرَضَ عَنِّی وَسَألَ فِی حَوَائِجِهِ وَشَدَائِدِهِ غَیْرِی!

Is My servant hopeful of those other than Me, when facing difficulties to resolve them for him, while eliminating all the problems is in My Hands? Is My servant hopeful of others but Me, to fulfill his needs and wants and save him from poverty, while the Generous and the Beneficent is Me and accomplishing all the exigencies is in My Power and Mercy?

Why is it that I see My servant ignorant of Me, while I have always granted him everything he wanted, out of Mercy? Why has he turned from Me and referred to others now when he

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is so much in need?

I am the Deity except Whom there is no other deity. I grant without demand, Would I not grant if I am demanded?!

Is the vast ocean of Mercy and Generosity not from Me? Are the world and the Hereafter not in My Hands?!x

If all the beings in the heavens and the earth ask Me to grant them demand as big as all the heavens and the earth, My Kingdom would not be reduced even to the extent of a fly. Woe to the one who turns attention from Me, demanding his needs from those except Me!(1)

وَعَظُمَ فِیمَا عِنْدَکَ رَغْبَتُهُ

O Allah, I ask You with the asking of one whose craving for what is with You has become intense.

Amir al-Mu’minin, Imam ‘Ali (as) was completely aware of what is with Allah. It was based on this awareness that when supplicating, he put his face to the ground and stated humbly: My craving of what is with You is intense.

What is with Allah which every deserved servant of Him can benefit from, would take more than human life as well as hundreds of volumes of books to be explained, and still not a drop of Allah’s vast sea of Mercy would described. Here we give a brief account of what is with the Almighty, so that it adds to our enthusiasm for reaching it.

Allah’s Rewards for the Servant’s Deeds

The Compassionate Allah, out of Mercy, has invited all His servants to perform obligatory deeds, such as praying, fasting, Hajj, Jihad, almsgiving, charity, serving people,

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1- Anis al-Layl: 196.

observing people’s rights, and avoiding engagement in wrongdoing. He has necessitated for Himself rewarding the servants for their deeds. Allah has declared in the Holy Qur’an:

وَالَّذِینَ یُمَسِّکُونَ بِالْکِتَابِ وَأَقَامُوا الصَّلاهَ إِنَّا لاَ نُضِیعُ أَجْرَ الْمُصْلِحِینَ.

And as for those who hold fast by the Book and keep up prayer, surely We do not waste the reward of the right doers. (7:170)

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ یُضِیعُ أَجْرَ الْمُحْسِنِینَ.

Surely, Allah does not waste the reward of the doers of good. (9:120)

إِنَّ الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ، إِنَّا لاَ نُضِیعُ أَجْرَ مَنْ أَحْسَنَ عَمَلاً.

Surely, as for those who believe and do good, We do not waste the reward of him who does a good work. (18:30)

The Merciful Allah has stated some kinds of rewards for His believing servants in His Qur’an: 1. Lofty reward, 2. Bountiful reward, 3. Grateful reward, 4. Great reward, and 5. Twice the reward.

لِلَّذِینَ أَحْسَنُوا مِنْهُمْ وَاتَّقَوْا أَجْرٌ عَظِیمٌ.

Those among them who do good to others and guard against evil shall have a great reward. (3:172)

إِنَّ الْمُصَّدِّقِینَ وَالْمُصَّدِّقَاتِ وَأَقْرَضُوا اللَّهَ قَرْضًا حَسَنًا یُضَاعَفُ لَهُمْ وَلَهُمْ أَجْرٌ کَرِیمٌ.

Surely the charitable men and the charitable women and those who set apart for Allah a goodly portion, it shall be doubled for them and they shall have a noble reward. (57:18)

إِنَّ الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَهُمْ أَجْرٌ غَیْرُ مَمْنُونٍ.

Those who believe and do good, they shall surely have a reward never to be cut off. (41:8)

وَالَّذِینَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَهُمْ مَغْفِرَهٌ وَأَجْرٌ کَبِیرٌ.

As for those who believe and do good, they shall have forgiveness

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and a great reward. (35:7)

أُوْلَئِکَ یُؤْتَوْنَ أَجْرَهُمْ مَرَّتَیْنِ بِمَا صَبَرُوا وَیَدْرَءُونَ بِالْحَسَنَهِ السَّیِّئَهَ وَمِمَّا رَزَقْنَاهُمْ یُنفِقُونَ.

These shall be granted their reward twice, because they are steadfast and they repel their evil with good and spent out of what We have given them. (28:54)

The rewards of those who believe and do good deeds are permanent and everlasting and only Allah is capable of granting them. The traditions have mentioned parts of Allah’s rewards. Some of these traditions, which are in fact explanations of Qur’anic verses are presented here. Imam ‘Ali (as) has stated:

ثَوَابُ عَمَلِکُمْ أفْضَلُ مِنْ عَمَلِکُمْ.

The rewards of your good deeds are superior to the deeds themselves.(1)

ثَوَابُ الصَّبْرِ أعْلَی الثَّوَابِ.

The greatest reward is the reward for patience (over obedience, calamities and wrongdoing).(2)

إنَّ أعْظَمَ المَثُوبَهِ مَثُوبَهُ الإنْصَافِ.

In fact the greatest reward is for fairness.(3)

ثَوَابُ الجِهَادِ أعْظَمُ الثَّوَابِ.

The reward for Jihad is the greatest reward.(4)

Imam al-Baqir (as) stated:

النَّائِمُ بِمَکَّهَ کَالمُجْتَهِدِ فِی البُلْدَانِ، وَالسَّاجِدُ بِمَکَّهَ کَالمُتَشَحِّطِ بِدَمِهِ فِی سَبِیلِ اللهِ، وَمَنْ خَلَّفَ حَاجّاً فِی أهْلِهِ کَانَ لَ_هُ کَأجْرِهِ حَتَّی کَأنَّهُ یَسْتَلِمُ الحَجَرَ.

The pilgrim who spends a night in Mecca is like one who is attempting in various cities. One who prostrates in Mecca is like martyr in Allah’s way. One who looks after the pilgrim’s family in his absence has an equal reward as the pilgrim, and it is as if he has touched al-Hajar al-Aswad (the Black Stone).

The Prophet of Islam (S) stated:

رِبَاطُ یَوْمٍ فِی سَبِیلِ اللهِ خَیْرٌ مِنَ الدُّنْیَا وَمَا عَلَیْهَا.

Fighting in Allah’s cause for a single day is preferred to

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1- Tafsir Exegesis Mo’in: 299
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 281, Fazilat Al-Sabr…, tradition 6240; Tafsir Mu’in: 299.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 394, Al-Insaf wa Madha…, tradition 9106; Mu’in Tafsir: 299.
4- Ghurar al-Hikam: 333, Al-Fasl Al-Thalith fi Al-Jihad…, tradition 7663; Mu’in Tafsir: 299.

the whole world and what is inside it.(1)

Prophet Muhammad (S) also stated:

حَرَسُ لَیْلَهٍ فِی سَبِیلِ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ أفْضَلُ مِنْ ألْفِ لَیْلَهٍ یُقَامُ لَیْلُهَا وَیُصَامُ نَهَارُهَا.

One night of guarding Allah’s cause is better than a thousand nights of worshipping and days of fasting.(2)

إنَّ العَبْدَ إذَا تَخَلَّی بِسَیِّدِهِ فِی جَوْفِ اللَّیْلِ المُظْلِمِ وَنَاجَاهُ، أثْبَتَ اللهُ النُّورَ فِی قَلْبِهِ.

When a servant speaks to his Lord in the darkness of night Allah would maintain a permanent light in his heart.(3)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

قِیَامُ اللَّیْلِ مَصَحَّه البَدَنِ وَرِضَا الرَّبِّ وَتَمَسُّکٌ بِأخْلاَقِ النَّبِیِّینَ وَتَعَرُّضٌ لِرَحْمَتِهِ.

Worshipping Allah at night brings healing to the body, Allah’s pleasure and the habits of the prophets’ servant.(4)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

إنَّ العَبْدَ لَیُؤمَرُ بِهِ إلَی النَّارِ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ فَیُسْحَبُ؛ فَیَقُولُ المُؤمِنُونَ وَالمُؤمِنَاتُ: یَا رَبِّ، هَذا الَّذِی کَانَ یَدْعُو لَنَا، فَشَفِّعْنَا فِیهِ. فَیُشَفِّعُهُمُ اللهُ فَیَنْجُو.

On the Day of Resurrection, Allah orders to take a servant to Hell. The believer men and women say: ‘O Lord! This person always prayed for us, so accept our intercession for him! So Allah accepts their intercession about him and he is saved.’(5)

The Messenger of Allah (S) said:

ألاَ مَنْ تَعَلَّمَ القُرْآنَ وَعَلَّمَهُ وَعَمِلَ بِمَا فِیهِ فَأنَا لَهُ سَائِقٌ إلَی الجَنَّهِ وَدَلِیلٌ إلَیْها.

Beware that everyone who learns Qur’an and teaches it to others and practices its rules I would bring and guide him to the Paradise.(6)

Paradise

One of the realities from Allah is Paradise, for which the believers and good doers are enthusiastic. The Merciful Allah has invited all His servants to this permanent abode. He has

p: 180


1- Tafsir Mu’in: 193.
2- Ibid.
3- 2 Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 5/ 207, Bab 28, tradition 5708; Tafsir Mu’in: 459.
4- 3 Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 8/ 150, Bab 39, tradition 10275.
5- 4 Al-Kafi: 2/ 507, Bab Al-Du’a’ Lil Ikhwan…, tradition 5; Rawzat Al-Wa’izin: 2/ 327.
6- Tafsir Mu’in: 496.

stated belief, piety, good deeds, and observing lawful and avoiding unlawful deeds for reaching it.

وَسَارِعُوا إِلَی مَغْفِرَهٍ مِنْ رَبِّکُمْ وَجَنَّهٍ عَرْضُهَا السَّمَاوَاتُ وَالأَرْضُ أُعِدَّتْ لِلْمُتَّقِینَ.

And hasten to forgiveness from your Lord; and a Garden, the extensiveness of which is as the heavens and the earth; it is prepared for those who guard against evil. (3:133)

سَابِقُوا إِلَی مَغْفِرَهٍ مِنْ رَبِّکُمْ وَجَنَّهٍ عَرْضُهَا کَعَرْضِ السَّمَاءِ وَالأَرْضِ أُعِدَّتْ لِلَّذِینَ آمَنُوا بِاللَّهِ وَرُسُلِهِ، ذَلِکَ فَضْلُ اللَّهِ یُؤْتِیهِ مَنْ یَشَاءُ، وَاللَّهُ ذُو الْفَضْلِ الْعَظِیمِ.

And hasten to forgiveness from your Lord; and a Garden, the extensiveness of which is as the heavens and the earth; it is prepared for those who believe in Allah and His apostles, that is the grace of Allah. (57:21)

Based on the Qur’anic verses and the traditions of the Prophet and his Household (as), paradise is the reward for belief, good deeds, piety, and avoiding unlawful acts. On the other hand, one who is away from these facts and is polluted with disbelief and other sins, does not deserve to enter paradise and would rather be placed in Hell and deprived of Allah’s Mercy and countenance.

وَمَنْ عَمِلَ صَالِحًا مِنْ ذَکَرٍ أَوْ أُنْثَی وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَأُوْلَئِکَ یَدْخُلُونَ الْجَنَّهَ یُرْزَقُونَ فِیهَا بِغَیْرِ حِسَابٍ.

Whoever does good, whether male or female, and he is a believer, he shall enter the Garden, in which he shall be given sustenance. (40:40)

وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتُ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِیَاءُ بَعْضٍ، یَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَیَنْهَوْنَ عَنْ الْمُنکَرِ وَیُقِیمُونَ الصَّلاهَ وَیُؤْتُونَ الزَّکَاهَ وَیُطِیعُونَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ، أُوْلَئِکَ سَیَرْحَمُهُمْ اللَّهُ، إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِیزٌ حَکِیمٌ. وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الْمُؤْمِنِینَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَاتِ

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جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِی مِنْ تَحْتِهَا الأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِینَ فِیهَا وَمَسَاکِنَ طَیِّبَهً فِی جَنَّاتِ عَدْنٍ وَرِضْوَانٌ مِنْ اللَّهِ أَکْبَرُ، ذَلِکَ هُوَ الْفَوْزُ الْعَظِیمُ.

And as for the believing men and the believing women, they are guardians of each other; they enjoin good and forbid evil and keep up prayer and pay the poor rate, and obey Allah and His Apostle; Allah will show Mercy to these; Surely Allah is Mighty, Wise. Allah has promised to the believing men and the believing women gardens, beneath which rivers flow, to abide in them, and goodly dwelling in gardens of perpetual abode; and best of all is Allah’s goodly pleasure- that is the grand achievement. (9:71-72)

Imam Al-Sajjad (as) stated:

إعْلَمُوا أنَّهُ مَنِ اشْتَاقَ إلَی الجَنَّهِ سَارَعَ إلَی الحَسَنَاتِ وَسَلاَ عَنِ الشَّهَوَاتِ، وَمَنْ أشْفَقَ مِنَ النَّارِ بَادَرَ بِالتَّوْبَهِ إلَی اللهِ مِنْ ذُنُوبِهِ وَرَاجَعَ عَنِ المَحَارِمِ.

One, who is eager to come into paradise, rushes to goodness and forgets lusts. And one, who is afraid of the Hell, rushes to Allah via repentance and avoids the unlawful.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

ثَمَنُ الجَنَّهِ العَمَلُ الصَّالِحُ.

The cost of the paradise is good deeds.(2)

The fifth infallible Imam, Imam al-Baqir (as) has stated:

عَشْرٌ مَنْ لَقِیَ اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ بِهِنَّ دَخَلَ الجَنَّهَ: شَهَادَهُ أنْ لاَ إلَهَ إلاَّ اللهُ وَأنَّ مُحَمَّداً رَسُولُ اللهِ، وَالإقْرَارُ بِمَا جَاءَ مِنْ عِنْدِ اللهِ، وَإقَامُ الصَّلاَهِ، وَإیتَاءُ الزَّکَاهِ، وَصَوْمُ شَهْرِ رَمَضَانَ، وَحِجُّ البَیْتِ، وَالوِلاَیَهُ لأوْلِیَاءِ اللهِ، وَالبَراءَهُ مِنْ أعْدَاءِ اللهِ، وَاجْتِنَابُ کُلِّ مُسْکِرٍ.

There are ten things with which anyone who meets Allah would enter paradise; testifying that there is no deity but Allah,

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1- Bihar Al-Anwar: 75/ 139, Bab 21, tradition 3.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 154, tradition 2876; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 794, Al-Janna, tradition 2538.

that Muhammad is His Prophet, and that he has brought Qur’an from Allah, establishing prayers, paying zakat, fasting in Ramadan, Hajj, befriending Allah’s friends, hating His enemies, and avoiding anything intoxicant.(1)

Allah’s Mercy

The holy Qur’an and the traditions have extensively mentioned Allah’s Mercy toward His servants, inviting everyone to obtain this Mercy by resorting to belief, good deeds, piety, charity, and repentance from sins.

فَأَمَّا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا بِاللَّهِ وَاعْتَصَمُوا بِهِ فَسَیُدْخِلُهُمْ فِی رَحْمَهٍ مِنْهُ.

As for those who believe in Allah and hold fast by Him, He will cause them to enter into His Mercy. (4:175)

وَإِذَا جَاءَکَ الَّذِینَ یُؤْمِنُونَ بِآیَاتِنَا فَقُلْ سَلامٌ عَلَیْکُمْ کَتَبَ رَبُّکُمْ عَلَی نَفْسِهِ الرَّحْمَهَ.

And when those who believe in Our signs come to you, say: Peace be on you, your Lord is the lord of All-encompassing Mercy. (6:54)

وَرَحْمَتِی وَسِعَتْ کُلَّ شَیْءٍ.

And My Mercy encompasses all things. (7:156)

إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِیمٌ.

Surely, Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (2:173)

فَقُلْ رَبُّکُمْ ذُو رَحْمَهٍ وَاسِعَهٍ.

Say: Your Lord is the Lord of All-encompassing mercy. (6:147)

For obtaining Allah’s Mercy, one should certainly observe some matters. Imam al-Baqir (as) said:

تَعَرَّضْ لِلرَّحْمَهِ وَعَفْوِ اللهِ بِحُسْنِ المُرَاجَعَهِ، وَاسْتَعِنْ عَلَی حُسْنِ المُرَاجَعَهِ بِخَالِصِ الدُّعَاءِ وَالمُنَاجَاهِ فِی الظُّلَمِ.

Obtain Allah’s Mercy and Forgiveness by returning to Him, and for realizing your return get help from sincere praying in the middle of night.(2)

Someone told the Prophet of Islam (S): “I would like to get subjected to Allah’s Mercy.” The Prophet (S) said:

إرْحَمْ نَفْسَکَ وَارْحَمْ خَلْقَ اللهِ یَرْحَمْکَ اللهُ.

Have mercy on yourself and other people, so that Allah would have mercy on you.(3)

For a better understanding

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1- Khisal: 2/ 432, tradition 16; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 796, Al-Janna, tradition 2548.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 75/ 162, Bab 22, tradition 1.
3- Kanz Al-Ummal: 44154; Mizan al-Hikmah: 4/ 2004, Al-Rahma, tradition 7004.

of Allah’s Mercy, you can refer to the third chapter of the book, under the title Allah’s Mercy.

Allah’s Forgiveness

Forgiveness means pardoning for the wrongdoing in order to avoid the chastisement. The Almighty has set this fact for the regretful sinners, who wish to return to His Kingdom, out of Mercy, and has admired Himself for this lofty attribute, stating:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ کَانَ عَفُوًّا غَفُورًا.

Surely Allah is Pardoning, Forgiving. (4:43)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

أمْرُهُ قَضَاءٌ وَحِکْمَهٌ، وَرِضَاهُ أمَانٌ وَرَحْمَهٌ، یَقْضِی بِعِلْمٍ وَیَعْفُو بِحِلْمٍ.

Allah’s orders are obligatory and out of expedience and wisdom. His takes pleasure in Mercy and Forgiveness. He rules with knowledge and awareness and forgives patiently.(1)

A Berduin told the Messenger of Allah: “O Prophet of Allah! Who would account for people’s deeds?” The Prophet (S) answered: “The Almighty would.” The Arab man said: “By the Lord of Kaaba then we would be saved.” The Prophet asked: “Why do you think so?” He replied:

لأنَّ الکَرِیمَ إذَا قَدَرَ عَفا.

The Generous would forgive if He gets Power.(2)

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

مَنْ تَنَزَّهَ عَنْ حُرُمَاتِ اللهِ سَارَعَ إلَیْهِ عَفْوُ اللهِ.

Allah’s Forgiveness would rush to anyone who avoids what Allah has forbidden.(3)

Some facts that are only with Allah like reward, paradise, mercy and forgiveness have inspired the pious servants intensely with a great urge to reach for what is with Him.

اللَّهُمَّ عَظُمَ سُلْطَانُکَ

O Allah! Great is Your Kingdom.

Allah's Kingdom is essential and real. Other sovereignties are conventional and temporary, but Allah's is permanent, unlimited, and endless. His Kingdom embraces hidden and apparent beings, as well as their apparent

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1- 1 Nahj Al-Balagha: sermon 160.
2- 2 Wurram Collection: 1/ 9.
3- 3 Bihar al-Anwar: 75/ 90, Bab 16, tradition 95.

and hidden characteristics. There is no kingdom but His Kingdom. All others are in need and have nothing of their own.

Allah's Argument and Proof is great and no one can compete with it. Wisdom, Prophethood, Qur’an, and Imamate are His proofs with which He would reason with all the beings on the Day of Resurrection, refusing their false excuses for committing sins and avoiding good deeds.

وَعَلاَ مَکَانُکَ

O Allah! Lofty is Your Being.

The Holy God has rightly praised Himself in the Holy Qur’an as:

لَیْسَ کَمِثْلِهِ شَیْءٌ.

Nothing like a likeness of Him. (42:11)

He is away from every fault and error. He owns all the perfect and magnificent attributes. His attributes are the same as His Essence, and His essence is the same as His attributes. The Glorious Names and Lofty Attributes only belong to Him. The establishment of all the beings is by means of His Guardianship, His Mercy, His Power, His Will, and His Knowledge. His Power is above all other powers; His Might is above everyone’s might. That is why His Being is Lofty and His Status is superior to everything.

وَخَفِیَ مَکْرُکَ

O Allah! Your Contrivance is hidden.

Contrivance means deceitfulness with regards to Allah's beings, which is used for deceiving others. Applying the word in this meaning to the Almighty Allah is not right, as it is the attribute of the incapable and unwise human, and incapability and ignorance is not part of the Holy Essence of Allah. His Holy Essence is wholly Knowledge, Might, Mercy, and Generosity. All the beings

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are in need of Him and He is the One Needless.

Contrivance with regards to the Almighty Allah, means chastisement and punishment. He would use it for those who deserve it, while they have no escape from it.

Allah's chastisement for those who commit sins arrogantly and ignorantly are in different ways. One way is that it is gradual in which case as the ignorant sinner increases his wrongdoing, Allah adds to his blessings, so that the servant's ignorance would be enhanced by the increased blessings. As a result the sinner would forget repentance. Then suddenly chastisement befalls without the sinner's attention and awareness, entangling him, and avenging him. In fact, the sinner would face the hidden contrivance.

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as):

إذَا أرَادَ اللهُ بِعَبْدٍ خَیْراً فَأذْنَبَ ذَنْباً أتْبَعَهُ بِنِعْمَهٍ وَیُذَکِّرُهُ الإسْتِغْفَارَ، وَإذَا أرَادَ بِعَبْدٍ شَرّاً فَأذْنَبَ ذَنْباً أتْبَعَهُ بِنِعْمَهٍ لِیُنْسِیَهُ الإسْتِغْفَارَ وَتَمَادَی بِهَا. وَهُوَ قَوْلُهُ: سَنَسْتَدْرِجُهُم مِّنْ حَیْثُ لاَ یَعْلَمُونَ.

In fact, sometimes Allah wills to give His servant blessings and goodness. That servant commits sins; Allah would give him blessings, and the servant becomes warned and repentant. Sometimes, on the other hand, He wills evil for a servant. Then He grants blessings to him after his wrongdoing, so the servant gets entertained by the blessing and hence more ignorant. He would thus forget repentance and his sins continue due to the blessings. This is the sense of Allah’s saying: 'We draw them near to destruction by degrees from whence they know not. (4:182)'(1)

وَظَهَرَ أَمْرُکَ

O Allah! Your Command is manifest.

Allah's

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1- Nafahat al-Layl: 81.

Command by which all the beings were created and were emerged in the world, is one of the first in its genesis. Another kind of Allah's Command is the religious one where the blessing of the Holy Qur’an was revealed to the Prophet's heart. Another manifestation of Allah's religious Command is His Rules about the lawfulness and unlawfulness of actions, which have been declared to all human beings by the Prophets, heavenly Books and Imams (as).

وَغَلَبَ قَهْرُکَ وَجَرَتْ قُدْرَتُکَ

Your Dominance is overwhelming; Your Power is ever-operating.

Allah's Dominance and Power was explained in detail at the beginning of the book.

وَلا یُمْکِنُ الْفِرَارُ مِنْ حُکُومَتِکَ

And escape from Your Domain is impossible.

The Almighty Allah embraces everything and every being wholly and in its entirety; nothing is outside His embracing Authority.

All the beings have come to existence by His Will, so He has been present before other beings and they continue existence by His Mercy and blessings. He is with all the creatures, and finally they would all return to Him. Hence He would exist after all the beings. How can then the creatures escape from His Domain?

An important valuable tradition reads: “Someone came to Imam Husayn (as) and said: 'I am a sinner, but cannot continue to be a sinner. So preach me!' Imam (as) stated:

إفْعَلْ خَمْسَهَ أشْیَاءٍ وَأذْنِبْ مَا شِئْتَ: لاَ تَأکُلْ مِنْ رِزْقِ اللهِ وَأذْنِبْ مَا شِئْتَ. أخْرُجْ مِنْ مَمْلَکَهِ اللهِ وَحُکْمِهِ وَأذْنِبْ مَا شِئْتَ. أطْلُبْ مَکَاناً لاَ یَرَاکَ فِیهِ اللهُ وَأذْنِبْ مَا شِئْتَ. وإذَا جَاءَکَ مَلَکُ المَوْتِ فَادْفَعْهُ عَنْکَ وَأذْنِبْ

p: 187

مَا شِئْتَ. وَإنْ سَاقَکَ مَلائِکَهُ العَذَابِ إلَی النَّارِ فَلا تَدْخُلْ فِیهَا وَأذْنِبْ مَا شِئْتَ.

'Do five things and then commit any sin you want! First, don't eat Allah's sustenance and commit sins. Second, Go outside the domain of Allah's Authority and commit sins. Third, go where Allah would not see you and commit sins. Fourth, when the death angel comes to you send him away and commit sins. Fifth, When the Hell angel wants to throw you into the Hell, don't enter it and commit sins.'(1)

If man wants to escape from anything he should escape from his own ignorance and go toward knowledge, from unknown to the apparent, and escape from the creatures to the Creator, so that he would benefit from worldly and heavenly advantages, divine paradise, and permanent prosperity. Such an escape is, in fact, moving from wrongdoing to common sense, from the world to the Hereafter, from the Hell to the Paradise, and at last from Satan to Allah.

اللَّهُمَّ لا أَجِدُ لِذُنُوبِی غَافِرًا وَّلا لِقَبَائِحِی سَاتِرًا وَّلا لِشَیٍْء مِّنْ عَمَلِیَ الْقَبِیحِ بِالْحَسَنِ مُبَدِّلاً غَیْرَکَ

O Allah! I find no forgiver of my sins, no concealer of my wicked acts, no transformer of any of my wicked acts into good acts, but You.

The Forgiver of Sins

One of the attributes of the Compassionate Allah is Forgiveness. It means Allah would pardon humans' sins, provided that they truly repent from their previous wrongdoing.

The sinner should be hopeful of Allah's forgiveness Who would excuse his crimes if he avoids sins and be adorned with righteous deeds.

Hopelessness

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 75/ 126, Bab 20, tradition 7.

of Allah's Forgiveness is a major sin, which is doomed to chastisement, and according to the Holy Qur’an, equals disbelief:

إِنَّهُ لا یَیْئَسُ مِنْ رَوْحِ اللَّهِ إِلاَّ الْقَوْمُ الکَافِرُونَ.

Surely none despairs of Allah's Mercy except the unbelieving people. (12:87)

The Holy Qur’an declares to the sinners not to be desperate of Allah's Mercy, since Allah would forgive all the sins.

قُلْ یَا عِبَادِی الَّذِینَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَی أَنْفُسِهِمْ لا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَهِ اللَّهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ یَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِیعًا إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِیمُ.

Say: O my people who have been prodigal against yourselves, do not despair of God’s mercy; surely God forgives sins altogether; surely He is the All-forgiving, the All-compassionate. (39:53)

The Qur’anic verses like the ones below indicate that the Almighty would pardon the wrongdoing of every sinner.

إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِیمٌ.

Allah is All-forgiving, All-compassionate. (2:173)

فَمَنْ تَابَ مِنْ بَعْدِ ظُلْمِهِ وَأَصْلَحَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ یَتُوبُ عَلَیْهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِیمٌ.

But whoever repents after his wickedness and reforms himself, then surely Allah will turn him mercifully; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (5:39)

وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِیمٌ.

Be careful of your duty to Allah; surely Allah is Forgiving Merciful. (8:69)

One who repents from his previous sins, avoids major sins after repentance, does not insist on committing minor sins, compensates his delayed obligatory deeds, and recompenses people's property that is due on him would get completely subjected to Allah's Mercy and Forgiveness.

The Messenger of Allah (S) lists the signs of a real repentant as follows:

أمَّا عَلاَمَهُ التَّائِبِ فَأرْبَعَهٌ: النَّصِیحَهُ للهِ فِی عَمَلِهِ، وَتَرْکُ البَاطِلِ، وَلُزُومُ الحَقِّ، وَالحِرْصُ عَلَی الخَیْرِ.

A repentant

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servant of Allah has four signs; complete obedience of Allah in deeds and behaviors, leaving the untruth, sticking to the truth, and intense enthusiasm to do good.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) says:

مَا کَانَ اللهُ لِیَفْتَحَ عَلَی عَبْدٍ بَابَ الشُّکْرِ وَیُغْلِقُ عَنْهُ بَابَ الزِّیَادَهِ، ولاَ لِیَفْتَحَ عَلَی عَبْدٍ بَابَ الدُّعَاءِ وَیُغْلِقُ عَنْهُ بَابَ الإجَابَهِ، وَلاَ لِیَفْتَحَ لِعَبْدٍ بَابَ التَّوْبَهِ وَیُغْلِقُ عَنْهُ بَابَ المَغْفِرَهِ.

Allah is not to open up the doors of gratitude to His servant but close the doors of increased blessings. He is not to allow him to supplicate, but limit fulfillment of his supplication. And He does not intend to open the doors of repentance, but close the doors of His forgiveness.(2)

The Concealer of Wicked Acts

Among the important attributes of the Almighty Allah is concealing the wrongdoings of a servant who commits sins in private, who does not want anyone to know of his wicked acts.

The All-Merciful has called himself Sattar Al-'Uyub or the concealer of faults, so that His servants know that He would save their honor in case they commit a crime. However if a sinner becomes brash as to sin in public, saving his face before others would be meaningless.

It is narrated from the Messenger of Allah (S) who said:

مَنْ تَابَ تَابَ اللهُ عَلَیْهِ وَأُمِرَتْ جَوَارِحُهُ أنْ تَسْتُرَ عَلَیْهِ وَبِقَاعُ الأرْضِ أنْ تَکْتُمَ عَلَیْهِ وأُنْسِیَتِ الحَفَظَهُ مَا کَانَتْ تَکْتُبُ عَلَیْهِ.

One who repents Allah would accept his repentance and order his organs to cover sins from his sight. He would order the earth segments to make him neglect his sins, and makes the

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1- Tuhaf Al-’Uqol: 18; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 638, Al-Tawba, tradition 2126.
2- Nahj Al-Balagha: Hikmat 435.

Writers forget what they have written in that servant's letter of deeds.(1)

Mu'awiyat Ibn Wahab quotes Imam Sadiq (as) as saying:

إذَا تَابَ العَبْدُ تَوبَهً نَصُوحاً أحَبَّهُ اللهُ وَسَتَرَ عَلَیْهِ... یُنْسِی مَلَکَیْهِ مَا کَانَا یَکْتُبَانِ عَلَیْهِ، وَیُوحِی إلَی جَوارِحِهِ وَإلَی بِقَاعِ الأرْضِ أنْ اکْتُمِی عَلَیْهِ ذُنُوبَهُ؛ فَیَلْقَی اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ حِینَ یَلْقَاهُ وَلَیْسَ شَیْءٌ یَشْهَدُ عَلَیْهِ بِشَیْءٍ مِنَ الذُّنُوبِ.

‘If a servant repents sincerely, Allah would love him and cover his faults in the world and the Hereafter.’ I asked Imam Sadiq (as): ‘How will Allah cover them?’ Imam (as) replied: ‘He will make the two angels, in charge of that servant, forget all about his sins they have recorded, and will reveal to his body organs to do so. So the servant would meet Allah while there is no record of his sins.’(2)

In the Qur’anic exegesis book, Minhaj al-Sadiqin, we read:

On the Day of Resurrection, the servant is brought before the Almighty, Who orders to place him in a dome. Then Allah would address that servant: 'My Servant! You benefited from My blessings for committing sins, and as I increased My blessings for you, you increased your wrongdoing.' So the servant bends his head from shyness. He is then addressed: 'My servant! At the same time as you committed sin I forgave you and removed all your sins.' Another servant is brought before Him afterwards and counted for his deeds until he becomes tearful. The Almighty says: 'My Servant! When you committed sins joyfully I did not embarrass you; how do I

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 6/ 28, Bab 20, tradition 32.
2- Al-Kafi, 2/ 436, Bab Al-Towba, tradition 12.

chastise you now that you are weeping? I forgive you and let you come into My Paradise!'

Transferor of Wicked Acts to Good Acts

Among the attributes of the Almighty is that when the servant repents and does good acts, He would transfer the servant's sins to virtuous acts.

إِلاَّ مَنْ تَابَ وَآمَنَ وَعَمِلَ عَمَلاً صَالِحًا فَأُوْلَئِکَ یُبَدِّلُ اللَّهُ سَیِّئَاتِهِمْ حَسَنَاتٍ وَکَانَ اللَّهُ غَفُورًا رَحِیمًا.

Except him who repents, believes, and does a good deed; so these are they of whom Allah changes the evil deeds to good ones, and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (25:70)

وَأَقِمْ الصَّلاَهَ طَرَفِی النَّهَارِ وَزُلَفًا مِنْ اللَّیْلِ إِنَّ الْحَسَنَاتِ یُذْهِبْنَ السَّیِّئَاتِ ذَلِکَ ذِکْرَی لِلذَّاکِرِینَ.

And keep up prayer at the two ends of the day and in the first parts of the night; surely good deeds take away evil deeds. (11:114)

Numerous facts are mentioned in important scientific and research-based books about transformation of wicked acts to good acts, some of which are philosophical, while the others are mystical. But stating all of them here required a lot more space and time.

The authors of Tafsir Nemuneh say that transforming wicked acts to good ones has some exegeses, all of which can be acceptable.

When a human repents from previous sins and renews his belief in Allah, a great revolution occurs throughout his existence. It is because of this alternation that all his sins are transformed to become good deeds. If he had committed murder in the past it would be replaced with defending the oppressed people and fighting the oppressors in future. If he were an adulterer previously, he

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would then become pious and chaste through repenting and being regretful for his former sins.

After repentance, Allah would remove the servant's sins, out of Mercy, replacing them with good acts. Abu-Dhar has narrated from the Messenger of Islam (S) who said:

یُحْشَرُ بَعْضُهُمْ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ فَیَأمُرُ اللهُ أنْ تُعْرَضَ صَغَائِرُ ذُنُوبِهِمْ وَتُسْتَرَ کَبَائِرُهَا. فَیُقَالُ لَهُ إنَّکَ فَعَلْتَ فِِی الیَوْمِ الفُلانِیِّ الذَّنْبَ الفُلاَنِیَّ فَیُقِرُّ بِذَلِکَ وَنَفْسُهُ تَضْطَرِبُ مِنَ الکَبَائِرِ الَّتِی سَیُسْألُ عَنْهَا، ثُمَّ یَأمُرُ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ أنْ تُبَدَّلَ سَیِّئَاتُهُ حَسَنَاتٍ. فَیَقُولُ: یَا رَبِّ: إنَّ لِی ذُنُوباً کَبِیرَهً ولاَ أرَاهَا.

On the Last Day, Allah orders to account for the servant's minor sins, and covering his major sins. He confesses to what he has committed of the minor sins, but he is afraid of his major sins. If Allah wills to have Mercy on him then, He would replace any sin of him with a good act. Therefore the servant professes: 'My Lord! I had committed many major sins that are not present today.'

Abu-Dharr says: At this point, the Prophet (S) smiled in a way that his teeth appeared, then he recited this verse:

فَأُوْلَئِکَ یُبَدِّلُ اللَّهُ سَیِّئَاتِهِمْ حَسَنَاتٍ وَکَانَ اللَّهُ غَفُورًا رَحِیمًا.

These are they of whom Allah changes the evil deeds to good ones, and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (25:70)(1)

The third possibility is that the sins are not the deeds that the humans do, but rather the wicked effects of the sins on human soul and mind. When he repents, those wicked effects are removed from his soul, transforming them to good effects;

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1- Nour Al-Thaqalayn: 4/33.

and this is the meaning of transformation of wicked acts to good acts.(1)

لا إِلَهَ إِلاّ أَنتَ سُبْحَانَکَ وَبِحَمْدِکَ

There is no deity but You! Glory be to You, and Yours is the Praise!

The phrase 'There is no deity but You' is termed Tahlil, 'Glory be to You' is labeled Tasbih, and 'Praise is Yours' is called Tahmid.

If someone utters Tahlil while believing in it sincerely and wholeheartedly, removing any other deity from his thought and life, he is a real monotheist. He would then be safeguarded by Allah and away from worldly and heavenly defamation. Such a servant would therefore be sent to Paradise on the Last Day, while Allah is content with him, the angles love him and the prophets, the righteous, and the martyrs are his companions.

The reality of Tahlil is realized when the human becomes aware of Allah's Divine Attributes and Glorious Names via the Holy Qur’an, the teachings of the prophets, especially from Prophet Muhammad and his Household (as). He is pure of impurities, attempts in fulfilling the obligations, and sincerely serves Allah's servants.

By following this path, the human soul and body confesses Allah's uniqueness and calls out:

Be aware that everything is fictitious except Allah and every blessing is certainly temporary.

Indeed is there any dweller in the world of existence to be worshipped and asked for sustenance? Is there anyone except Him to solve the problems, remove calamities, forgive the sins, and conceal the wicked acts?

The remembrance of Allah by Tahlil, Tasbih, and Tahmid is in fact

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1- Tafsir Nemuneh: 15/ 160.

appropriate for this section of the Kumayl supplication, as the supplicant, knows his destitution and weakness, and confesses to his sins stating that: I found no one to forgive my sins and conceal my wicked acts. Because he knows well that this is only possible by Allah's Power.

The Cost of Paradise

The servant who sincerely utters Tahlil and practically denies any other deity except Allah, would certainly and definitely obey and worship Allah and no one else. Such a servant is preparing the cost of paradise, while placing himself in the secure fort of the Compassionate.

Imam al-Ridha (as) has narrated from his noble ancestors who have narrated from the Messenger of Allah who cited from the Almighty:

لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ اللهُ حِصْنِی؛ فَمَنْ دَخَلَ حِصْنِی أمِنَ مِنْ عَذَابِی.

Tawhid (Unity of Allah) is My Fort, so whoever comes to My Fort would be secured from My chastisement.(1)

The Messenger of Allah (S) said:

مَا جَزَاءُ مَنْ أنْعَمَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ عَلَیْهِ بِالتَّوْحِیدِ إلاّ الجَنَّهَ.

The reward of one to whom Allah has granted the blessing of Tawhid is not but Paradise.(2)

مَنْ مَاتَ وَهُوَ یَعْلَمُ أنَّ اللهَ حَقٌّ دَخَلَ الجَنَّهَ.

One who dies while he knows that Allah is indeed the Truth, would enter Paradise.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as):

قَوْلُ لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ اللهُ ثَمَنُ الجَنَّهِ.

The cost of Paradise is the sincere uttering of ‘There is no deity but Allah’.(4)

Moreover, he said:

مَنْ قَالَ لاَ إلَهَ إلا ّ اللهُ مُخْلِصاً دَخَلَ الجَنَّهَ؛ وَإخْلاَصُهُ أنْ تَحْجِزَهُ لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ اللهُ عَمَّا حَرَّمَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ.

One who confesses to the Unity of Allah sincerely would enter Paradise

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1- Tawhid Saduq: 24; Bihar al-Anwar: 3/ 5, Bab 1, tradition 14.
2- Tawhid Saduq: 22; Bihar al-Anwar: 3/5, Bab 1, tradition 12.
3- Tawhid Saduq: 29; Bihar al-Anwar: 3/9, Bab 1, tradition 20.
4- Tawhid Saduq: 21; Wasa’il Al-Shi’a: 7/ 210, Bab 44, tradition 9140.

and his sincerity takes him away from what Allah has declared unlawful.(1)

A man came to the fifth infallible Imam, Imam al-Baqir (as) and asked about the Prophet's tradition about the cost of Paradise. Imam (as) said: “It is true.” That man returned from the house of Imam al-Baqir (as), but then the Imam ordered him to return. Then he stated:

There are some conditions for Tawhid and I - who is the infallible Imam, selected by Allah, obeying whom is obligatory in every aspect - am among its conditions.(2)

However, the only way for human salvation is belief in Tawhid (Allah's Unity) and its conditions. In other words, when a human knows Allah as the only deity Who possesses and gives sustenance to everything in the world, and confesses to it verbally, accepting the prophet hood of the prophets and the Imamate of the infallible Imams, as well as the Holy Qur’an, he has for sure resorted to the only key of salvation.

After confessing to the Unity of Allah, every good act of the human would be accepted, and if he does something wicked, he would be forgiven after regret and repentance. Without Tawhid, however, no good deed is accepted and even the smallest sins are not forgiven.

If the believers in Allah's Unity gets subjected to chastisement in the Hereafter for wrongdoing, they would then be saved for the blessing of Tawhid. Important traditions have been cited in authentic tradition books, one of which is narrated here.

The Prophet of Islam (S) said

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1- Tawhid Saduq: 27; Bihar al-Anwar: 90/ 197, Bab 5, tradition 21.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 3/ 13, Bab 1, tradition 28; Mustarak Al-Wasa’il: 5/ 359, Bab 36, tradition 6083.

to Gabriel, the angel of revelation who is the nearest to Allah: Describe the Inferno for me. Gabriel described its residents and positions one by one until the first position and then kept silent. The Prophet (S) asked Gabriel: Who are the residents of the Hell's first position? He answered: “The chastisement of them is easier than that of other positions' residents, who are the sinners from your nation. The Prophet (S) said: Will anyone from my nation go to the Hell? The nearest angel said: Only those who have committed major sins without repenting.

The Prophet (S) began crying and continued to do so for three complete days. His daughter Hazrat Zahra (s.a) came to visit him on the fourth day who found him laying his face on the ground, with so many tears, that the soil under his face had turned to mud. She asked him the reason. The Prophet (S) replied: Because the Trustee angel has informed me that the first floor of the Inferno is resided by the sinners from my nation. Hadrat Fatima (s.a) said: Did you ask Gabriel how the sinners would be taken to the Hell? Her honorable father answered: Yes! He said that the sinner men and women will be held by their hair and taken to Hell. Then as they would approach the Hell and see its agent they would cry out and ask him to let them cry for their misery. When the agent of Hell allows them to do so,

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they weep until their eyes are drained from tears, and they now shed blood instead. The agent would say: You should cried in such a manner in the world for the fear of today's account.

Afterwards, the agent of the Inferno takes them to the Hell. The sinners would cry: “la-ilaha illa allahu” so the fire withdraws from them saying: How can I cover these sinners when they have confessed to Allah's Unity. The agent orders the fire to cover them, but the Almighty addresses: Do not burn their faces since they have prostrated to worship Me and do not burn their hearts because they have borne thirst in Ramadan. So they would remain in the Inferno as long as Allah wills. Then Gabriel is asked of the Muslim sinners' state. The agent of Hell shows them to Gabriel. They would observe Gabriel in a pleasant way and would ask his identity. They are answered: He is the angel who brought Muhammad (S) revelations in the world. Hearing the Prophet's name, the captives of the Hell would cry: Greet the Prophet (S) for us and tell him that the Muslim sinners are in the Hell.

Gabriel would deliver their message to Prophet Muhammad (S) who would then prostrate to Allah and ask Him to forgive those sinners for his sake. The Prophet (S) would be replied: I forgave them for your sake.” So the Prophet would remove them from Hell, while they resemble firewood. Then he would take them into 'Ein Al-Hayat

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to drink from its water and wash their inner and apparent impurities. On their forheads this phrase is depicted: Liberated from the Fire by the Compassionate.

When they are brought to Paradise, its residents are informed: These are liberated from the Hell.

The liberated ones would say: O Lord! You had Mercy on us and brought us into Paradise, now remove this sign from our foreheads. So Allah would accept their request and remove their foreheads' signs.”

Tasbih

Tasbih means considering Allah as purified from any fault or wickedness. It is in fact confessing to Allah's infinite perfections.

Talha Ibn ‘Abdullah says: I asked the Messenger of Allah about the exegesis of “subhanallahi (Glory be to Allah).” He said:

تَنْزِیهُ اللهِ مِنْ کُلِّ عَیْبٍ.

It is regarding Allah as pure of any faults.(1)

Amir Al-Mu'minin Imam ‘Ali (as) was asked about the exegesis of the same phrase. He said:

It is regarding Allah as Grand and purified of what every disbeliever ascribes to Him. When a servant confesses to this sincerely, all the angels praise him.(2)

Many of the verses in the Holy Qur’an introduce all the world beings as praising Allah:

وَإِنْ مِنْ شَیْءٍ إِلاَّ یُسَبِّحُ بِحَمْدِهِ وَلَکِنْ لاَ تَفْقَهُونَ تَسْبِیحَهُمْ.

There is not a single thing but glorifies Him with His praise, but you do not understand their glorification. (17:44)

The reason why Tasbih is mentioned in this part of the supplication is may be because, since the servant has acknowledged his wrongdoing, which keeps him away from his nearness to Allah, the best way for being delivered is glorifying Allah.

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1- Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2362, Al-Tasbih, tradition 8240.
2- Ma’ani Al-Akhbar: 9, tradition 3; Mizan al-Hikmah: 5/ 2362, Al-Tasbih, tradition 8241.

So it is the very position to praise Allah, so that He would save Him from the darkness and bring him to close to him. When the Prophet Jonah (as) was entangled in the darkness of the fish belly in the dark night:

فَنَادَی فِی الظُّلُمَاتِ أَنْ لا إِلَهَ إِلاَّ أَنْتَ سُبْحَانَکَ إِنِّی کُنتُ مِنْ الظَّالِمِینَ. فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ وَنَجَّیْنَاهُ مِنْ الْغَمِّ وَکَذَلِکَ نُنْجِی الْمُؤْمِنِینَ.

So he called out in the darkness: There is no god but Thou; glory be to Thee. Surely I have been a wrong-doer. So We responded to him and delivered him from the grief and thus do We deliver the believers. (21:87-88)

The author of the exegesis book Minhaj Al-Sadiqin, explaining about this verse, has narrated the Prophet (S) who said:

مَا مِنْ مَکْرُوبٍ یَدْعُو بِهَذا الدُّعَاءِ إلاّ اسْتُجِیبَ لَهُ.

There is no grief-stricken who recites this verse, but his supplication would be accepted.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) has narrated from Amir Al-Mu'minin (as):

Tasbih fills the scale of deeds from rewards.(2)

‘Allamah Majlisi in his excellent book, Bihar al-Anwar, has narrated a valuable tradition about glorifying Allah: “When something made the Prophet (S) happy, he used to say: Praise be to Allah for this! And when some occurrence grieved him, he said: Praise be to Allah in all states!”(3)

ظَلَمْتُ نَفْسی، وَتَجَرَّأْتُ بِجَهْلی وَسَکَنْتُ إِلی قَدیمِ ذِکْرِکَ لی وَمَنِّکَ عَلَیَّ

I have wronged myself, I have been audacious in my ignorance and I have depended upon Your constant remembrance of me and Your favor toward me.

Wronging Oneself

Though I recognized You well by watching and contemplating on Your

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1- Anis al-Layl: 226.
2- Anis al-Layl: 227.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 33, Bab 61, tradition 14.

wonderful creations and signs in the world, hearing the facts about You from the researchers, and reading books on You, I did not come towards You, did not obey Your rules, did not worship You, did not ask You requests, and became ignorant of You. This was a mistake I have always committed and thus, wronged myself.

I recognized Your prophets by reading their history and knew them as the guides to salvation, who are sympathetic to human beings, deliverers of people from Satanic temptations, and advisers. As I was a Muslim, this knowledge of mine was deeper in the case of the Prophet of Islam (S); however, I ignored them, resorted to sources other than them, followed stranger traditions, and did not appreciate the prophets. I was not grateful for this blessing of Yours and insisted on my miserable way of life, following the misguidance path. This way, I always wronged myself.

I got familiar with Your Holy Book, Qur’an, through participating in religious gatherings and reading Islamic books and divine teachings. I found out that Qur’an has been revealed from You to the Prophet of Islam (S) in order to guide all Your servants. I knew that this Book is the most comprehensive one including the most fruitful topics, wise rules, useful teachings, startling advises, and the most excellent instructions. Nevertheless, I neglected its signs and facts and lived a negligent life, hence I wronged myself severely.

I got to know the noble Imams via various ways and realized that they

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are Your proofs among the people, and guides to the truth. Being perfect humans, they are the successors of the Prophet (S) in his nation. The Prophet (S) has introduced them as the leaders of the people after himself, who would teach people the Islamic teachings, help differentiate between the truth and the futile, and explain the Qur’anic verses. Though they faced many difficulties, hostilities and calamities, and were all martyred by the enemies of Islam, the Infallible Imams did not neglect their great responsibility of guiding the people even for a moment. They stated divine rules and religious orders for the people, which were collected in four hundred strong books for the future generations. But I ignored all these facts, disobeyed my Imams who are the sources of guidance, and went astray. I insisted on my misguidance and deviance, resorted to worldly sources, and preferred the ignorant people, who have misguided from the east to the west of the earth, to my infallible and benevolent Imams (as). This was the wrong I committed.

I knew well that the great book of Nahj al-Balaghah is but a tinge of Imam ‘Ali's knowledge, in which there is everything necessary for the guidance of humans towards Allah, salvation and a purified life. Its sermons, letters, and maxims are brimming with Divine teachings, to the extent that it is called Qur’an's counterpart. I was also aware of al-Sahifah al-Sajjadiyyah, including fifty four supplications of Imam al-Sajjad (as), in which all the human responsibilities before

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the Almighty have been stated. All the Shi'a Imams have recommended reference to this invaluable book.

I was aware that the Divine rules and the Islamic teachings are stated in the precious books such as Al-Kafi, Tahdhib al-Ahkam, al-Istibsar, man-la-yahdharuhu’l-faqih, Tuhaf al-’Uqul, Rawdhat al-Wa’izhin, al-Wafi, al-Shafi, Bihar al-Anwar, Wasa'il al-Shi’ah, Rawdhat al-Muttaqin, and Jami’ Ahadith al-Shi’ah and a thousand more, but did not bother myself reading them for my bliss in this world and the Hereafter. Instead I spent my days and nights reading useless and irreligious magazines, wasted my valuable time, and only harmed myself. I have always been audaciously ignorant.

Audacity in Ignorance

Since I did not follow the path of knowledge and remained deprived of religious cognition, I continued life ignorantly and got entangled in sins. I could not think of my ultimate station, the account of my deeds, the Hell and the Paradise, hence I began opposing You. My ignorance made me audacious in engaging in wrongdoing.

Confessing to sins

Lord! When I was inside my mother's womb, I was wholly under Your Mercy. Your Mercy turned the impure semen into a perfect human, with every necessary organ. Then You enabled my mother to bear me healthily, and prepared my food in her breasts. You also endeared me to my parents, so that I could grow up gradually under their protection. Then You organized the rest of my life.

Lord! This compassion which was solely from You made me proud. It made me think I would still benefit from Your Mercy if I engaged in wrongdoing,

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without any punishment. I should not have become proud because of Your blessings; I should have not committed sins.

Now that I have become aware of my miserable life and terrible condition, I have turned to You wholeheartedly. I confess to my sins and my audacity in wronging myself. Based on the Qur’anic teachings and Prophet's traditions, I know that my confession of my sins is in fact my repentance and return to salvation.

It is narrated from Imam al-Baqir (as):

وَاللهِ لاَ یَنْجُو مِنَ الذَّنْبِ إلاّ مَنْ أقَرَّ بِهِ.

By Allah (I swear), no one would be saved from sins, unless he confesses to sins.(1)

He also said:

لاَ وَاللهِ، مَا أرَادَ اللهُ مِنَ النَّاسِ إلاّ خِصْلَتَیْنِ: أنْ یُقِرُّوا لَ_ُه بِالنِّعَمِ فَیَزِیدُهُمْ، وَبِالذُّنُوبِ فَیَغْفِرُهَا لَهُمْ.

By Allah, He doest not expect but two attributes from His servants; that they confess to His blessings so that He would increase them, and that they confess to their sins so that He would forgive them.(2)

The Commander of the Believers, Imam ‘Ali (as) has stated:

اَلمُقِرُّ بِالذَّنْبِ تَائِبٌ.

One who confesses to his sins is considered as the one who repents.(3)

شَافِعُ الذَّنْبِ إقْرَارُهُ وَتَوْبَتُهُ اعْتِذَارُهُ.

The intercessor of a sinner is his confession to sins, and his repentance is as his apology.(4)

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as) in Tadhkirat al-Awliya':

Any sin whose beginning is fear and whose end is apology makes the servant close to the Almighty. And any worship whose beginning is pride and whose end is egotism makes him far from Allah.

Confession of the Young Sinner

Mansur Ibn Ammar says: One night I went out

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 6/ 36, Bab 20, tradition 56.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 426, Bab Al-’i’tiraf bil Zunub, tradition 2; Mizan al- Hikmah: 2/ 642, Al-Tawba, tradition 2153.
3- Mustadrak Al-Wasa’il: 12/ 116, Bab 82, tradition 13671; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 644, Al-Tawba, tradition 2155.
4- Ghurar al-Hikam: 195, tradition 3811; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 644, Al-Tawba, tradition 2156.

and passed a house from which I heard the weeping and beseeching of a young man, who called his God in this manner: “Lord! When I committed sins it was not for opposing or disobeying you. My carnal soul took over me; Satan deceived me, so I wronged myself and made myself subjected to Your wrath.” Hearing this, I recited this verse through the door:

یَا أَیُّهَا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا قُوا أَنفُسَکُمْ وَأَهْلِیکُمْ نَارًا وَقُودُهَا النَّاسُ وَالْحِجَارَهُ عَلَیْهَا مَلائِکَهٌ غِلاظٌ شِدَادٌ لا یَعْصُونَ اللَّهَ مَا أَمَرَهُمْ وَیَفْعَلُونَ مَا یُؤْمَرُونَ.

O you who believe! Save yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones; over it are angels stern and strong, they do not disobey Allah in what He commands them, and do as they are commanded. (66:6)

When I read this verse the young man cried out and I went away. The next morning I passed that house again and saw an old woman who was weeping and said: “I had a son who cried at nights from Allah's fear. Last night someone came and recited a verse of punishment before the door. Then my son cried out and passed away.” I told her: “I recited that verse last night. May I wash his body before being buried?” She allowed me, so I saw him wearing a piece of cloth around his neck. When I opened the cloth, I saw on his neck written in green: “We have washed this young man with the water of repentance!”(1)

Regretful Sinner's End

‘Abd al-Wahid Ibn Zayd,

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1- Anis al-Layl: 233.

who was among the corrupted wrongdoers, passed the preaching circle of Yusuf Ibn Husayn one day, who was saying at that very moment: “The Compassionate Allah has invited the sinners toward Himself, out of Mercy, as if He needs them.” Hearing this statement, ‘Abd al-Wahid took off his clothes and ran to the cemetery. On the first night, Yusuf Ibn Husayn dreamed of a herald, calling on behalf of Allah: “Go find the sinful young man!” That is give him the tidings of Our forgiveness! Yusuf began looking for the young man until he found him in the cemetery on the third day. The young man had his head on the ground and was weeping and beseeching Allah. When he saw Yusuf beside himself, he said: “You have been sent three days ago, but you only came today.” He then passed away.

اللّهُمَّ مَوْلای کَمْ مِنْ قَبیح سَتَرْتَهُ، وَکَمْ مِنْ فادِح مِنَ الْبَلاءِ أَقَلْتَهُ، وَکَمْ مِنْ عِثار وَقَیْتَهُ، وَکَمْ مِنْ مَکْرُوه دَفَعْتَهُ، وَکَمْ مِنْ ثَناء جَمیل لَسْتُ أَهْلاً لَهُ نَشَرْتَهُ

O Allah! O my Protector! How many ugly things You have concealed! How many tribulations You have warded off! How many stumbles You have removed! How many ordeals You have averted! And how much beautiful praise, for which I was unworthy of, You have spread about me.

When uttering the phrase “my Protector” in the middle of a Thursday night, the supplicant feels a pleasure which is unique in the world. That is why Prophet Moses (as) states in his prayer to Allah:

I

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have something in my poverty that does not exist in all Your Property. Allah addressed him: What is that thing, Moses? He replied: I have a Lord like You.(1)

Concealing the ugly deeds is one of the greatest blessings and a unique mercy from Allah towards His servant. When Allah hides the ugly things of His believing servant in this world, He would certainly pay more attention to His repented servant in the Hereafter, concealing his sins more than before. It is narrated from the Messenger of Allah (S):

مَا سُتِرَ عَلَی عَبْدٍ فِی الدُّنْیَا إلاّ سُتِرَ عَلَیْهِ فِی الآخِرَهِ.

No deed or ugly thing of a servant is concealed in this world except that it is concealed in the Last Day too.(2)

In the supplications quoted and recommended by the Prophet (S) and his infallible Household (as), there is continuous reference to Allah being the Concealer of Faults. In these supplications, there are always good tidings for the repented sinner that the Merciful Allah would avoid letting his face down in this world and the Hereafter, hide his faults and sins, and inform no one of his wrongdoing.

As an instance, a tradition is quoted here from the closing section of the valuable book ‘Uddat al-Da’i by Ibn Fahad al-Hilli:

Once Gabriel, the trustee angel, descended to the Prophet of Islam (S), smiling and with good tidings. He greeted the Prophet (S) who responded to his greeting. Then Gabriel said: “The Almighty has sent a gift for you.”

The Messenger of Allah asked: “What is that

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1- Anis al-Layl: 239.
2- Wurram Collection: 1/ 189.

gift?”

He replied: “There are some words of the Empyrean’s treasures which Allah has endeared specially for the Empyrean.”

Prophet Muhammad (S) asked again: “What are those words?”

Gabriel then said:

یَا مَنْ أَظْهَر الْجَمِیلَ، وَسَتَرَ الْقَبِیحَ، یَا مَنْ لَمْ یُؤْاخِذْ بِالْجَرِیرَهِ، وَلَمْ یَهْتِکِ السّتْرَ، یَا عَظِیمَ الْعَفْوِ، یَا حَسَنَ التّجَاوُزِ، یَا وَاسِعَ الْمَغْفِرَهِ، یَا بَاسِطَ الْیَدَیْنِ بِالرّحْمَهِ، یَا صَاحِبَ کُلّ نَجْوَی، یَا مُنْتَهَی کُلّ شَکْوَی، یَا کَرِیمَ الصّفْحِ، یَا عَظِیمَ الرّجَاءِ، یَا مُبْتَدِئاً بِالنّعَمِ قَبْلَ اسْتِحْقَاقِهَا، یَا رَبّنَا وَسَیّدَنَا وَمَوْلانَا، یَا غَایَهَ رَغْبَتِنَا، أَسْأَلُکَ یَا اَللهُ أنْ لاَ تُشَوِّهَ خَلْقِی بِالنَّارِ.

O the One who revealed the goodness and concealed the badness. O the One who reprimanded no one for wrongdoing and let no one’s face down. O the One whose forgiveness is great, whose pardon is good, and whose Mercy is extended. O the one who has applied his Power in Mercy. O the Owner of any secret and the ultimate source of any complaint. O the one whose forbearance is magnanimous and whose blessings are great. O the Bestower of blessings before the necessary deserve for them. O my Lord, my Protector, and the end of my tendency! O Allah! I ask You not to destroy my creation by the Fire.

The Messenger of Allah asked Gabriel: “What is the recompense of these words?”

Gabriel said: “Beware that the whole knowledge is exclusive in these words. If all the angels of the seven Heavens and the seven earths attempted to describe this supplication until the Day of Resurrection, they will be able to describe

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but one part out of one thousand parts of it.”

When the servant says: “O the One who revealed the goodness and concealed the badness,” Allah would conceal his sins, have mercy on him in the world, maintain his well-being in the next world, and cover him with thousand veils in the two worlds.

And when the servant says: “O the One who reprimanded no one for wrongdoing and let no one’s face down,” the Almighty would not account for his deeds on the Day of Resurrection, and would not uncover his secrets on that day.

When the servant says: “O the One whose forgiveness is great,” Allah would forgive his sins, even if they are as many as the waves of the sea.

When he says: “O the One whose pardon is good,” Allah would even forgive his wine-drinking, theft, and other major sins.

When he says: “O the One whose Mercy is extended,” the Merciful Allah would open seventy doors of Mercy on him, so that he would be subjected to Allah’s Mercy until the last day of his life.

When the servant says: “O the one who has applied his Power in Mercy,” Allah would extend his Power to him out of Mercy.

When the servant says: “O the Owner of any secret and the ultimate source of any complaint,” Allah would grant him the recompense of the grief-stricken, poverty-stricken, patient or blind man until the Day of Resurrection.

If the servant says: “O the one whose forbearance is magnanimous and whose blessings are great,”

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the Almighty would fulfill all his wishes and the wishes of all other servants for him.

If the servant says: “O the Bestower of blessings before the necessary deserve for them,” Allah would recompense him as if he is grateful of His blessings.

If the servant says: “O my Lord,” his Lord would say: “My angels! Beware that I forgave him, and I granted him recompense equal to the number of all My creatures, either in the Paradise or the Hell, in the heavens or the earth, the sun or the moon, the star and the raindrops, different kinds of beings in the mountains, on the soil, and on the Empyrean.”

And if he says: “O my Protector,” Allah would fill his heart with belief.

When the servant says: “O the end of my tendency!” the Almighty would grant him the wishes of all the other creatures.

And if the servant says: “O Allah! I ask You not to destroy my creation by the Fire,” Allah says: “My servant wants to become free from the Fire. O My angels! I delivered him, along with his parents, brothers, family, and neighbors from the Fire and accepted his intercession for a thousand of those who deserved to be put into Fire.”

So Gabriel said: “O Muhammad! Teach these words to the believers and not to the hypocrites. This supplication is accepted for the supplicant and for those present in Allah’s House, when it is circumambulated.”(1)

It should be noted that this great recompense and wonderful reward is not rare

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1- Uddat Al-Da’i: 337.

of Allah’s extended Mercy, unlimited Beneficence, and infinite treasure of rewards.

Imam ‘Ali (as), following the phrase, “How many ugly things You have concealed,” states: “How many tribulations You have warded off; such as earthquake, storm, flood, fire, accident, famine, and calamities. How many stumbles You have removed, which could destroy my belief, my ethics, my benefactions, and my face among people. How many ordeals You have averted, which could destroy my calmness, bring anxiety in my life, and put pressure and difficulty in my heart and mind. How much beautiful praise, for which I was unworthy of, You have spread about me, though I had committed so many sins; so my parents and my closed ones thought highly of me and praised me, while I did not deserve it.

اَللّهُمَّ عَظُمَ بَلائی وَأَفْرَطَ بی سُوءُ حالی، وَقَصُرَتْ بی أَعْمالی وَقَعَدَتْ بی أَغْلالی

O Allah my tribulation is tremendous, my bad state is excessive, my acts are inadequate, and my fetters have tied me down.

The above-mentioned phrases are the entreaties of a patient of sins and a captive of disobedience and material wants before an experienced Omniscient physician. The Merciful physician has invited the patient Himself, out of beneficence, to cure him of his tribulations and free him of his material desires.

The Meaning of ‘bala' (tribulation)’

point

The insightful servants have suggested several meanings for the word ‘tribulations:’

1. Sins

It has been said that “tribulations” are the sins, which are the greatest misfortunes. Wrongdoing is a dangerous illness that, unless one repents and returns to Allah while compensating for

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his past deeds, it can lead to the spiritual death of his heart. When one’s heart dies he would lose touch with the Almighty, which leads to eternal atrocity and being away from Allah’s Mercy.

The Fourth infallible Imam, al-Sajjad (as), at the beginning of Munajat al-Ta'ibin (supplication of the repented) has mentioned this fact:

وَأمَاتَ قَلْبِی عَظِیمُ جِنَایَتِی.

My great crime, that is my wrongdoing, has caused my heart to die.

Abu-Dharr al-Ghifari, a disciple of Prophet Muhammad’s was asked: “What illness do you suffer from?” He answered:

أشْکُو ذُنُوبِی.

I suffer from the illness of sin.

An Important Question-Answer

Amin al-Islam al-Tabarsi, in the great exegesis book “Majma’ al-Bayan”, explaining about the Qur’anic chapter al-Waqi’ah narrates: ‘Uthman Ibn ‘Affan visited ‘Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud while he was sick, before his death. He asked ‘Abdullah: “What do you suffer from?”

‘Abdullah answered: “My sins.”

‘Uthman asked: “What do you desire?”

He replied: “My Lord’s Mercy.”

‘Uthman asked again: “Do you want me to call a doctor to visit you?”

“The real Healer has cured me,” answered ‘Abdullah.

‘Uthman asked him again: “Do you want me to pay your portion from Muslims’ treasury?”

‘Abdullah replied: “You did not pay it when I needed it, do you want to pay it now that I don’t need it anymore?”

‘Uthman stated again: “Let me pay it to your daughters instead.”

But ‘Abdullah said: “My daughters don’t need it either. I have recommended them to recite al-Waqi’ah chapter, because I heard from the Prophet (S) that anyone who recites al-Waqi’ah every night would never suffer from poverty.”

A Dialogue with Uways al-Qarani

The great Iranian poet, ‘Attar, narrates from

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Hurm Ibn Hayyan in his “Tadhkirat al-Awliya’ “, who said: “When I heard that Uways al-Qarani has reached the position of intercession, I desired to see him. I came to Kufah and looked for him until I found him doing ablution. He Asked me: “O Ibn Hayyan! What has brought you here?” I said: “The desire to befriend you.” He answered: “I don’t think that one, who befriends Allah, befriends anyone except Him.” I told him: “Give me a piece of advice!” He said: “O Ibn Hayyan! When you fall asleep, consider death under your pillow, and when you get up, consider it in front of yourself. Do not pay attention to the smallness of your sin; rather pay attention to Allah’s greatness, before whom you have committed the sin. Because if you consider your sins small, it is as if you consider Allah small!”

2. Remoteness from Allah’s Closeness

It has also been said that the great “tribulation” may be remoteness from Allah’s closeness - the position that is obtainable by belief, good deeds, and good morality. This position contains Allah’s pleasure and would lead to accompanying the prophets, martyrs, and the pious in the Hereafter.

Those who are always far from this position would eventually reach a position in which there are Satans and savages, but no humanity, belief, good deeds and morality. That is a place where human does nothing but oppression, wrongdoing, transgression, and immorality. On the other hand, those who are always seeking the nearness position benefit from Allah’s especial blessings; hence

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they engage in worshipping the Almighty and serving His servants, in a joyful and blissful state. In this engagement, they have no job but as a sincere servant, and no desire but reaching Allah’s nearness. Their hearts continuously gain blessings from Allah and leads it to all aspects of their beings.

Joseph, the truthful, seeking the route to Allah’s nearness, turned his diminutive house in Kan’an into a sincere worshipping and serving site. At the very beginning of this spiritual route, he dreamed of the future, seeing his high position. He made the deep darkness of the well his prayer place. He made the palace of the Egypt’s king, which was a falling place for Zulaykha (Potipher’s wife), his rising place to piety. He also turned the prison into a place of worship for himself and a place of guidance for others. He performed wisely and trustworthily as the treasurer of Egypt and sincerely served Allah’s servants as Egypt’s king. He thus reached the position of Allah’s nearness.

3. Ignorance

It has been said that “tribulation” means ignorance, which is the root of all difficulties, deprivations, and eternal misfortune. The Commander of the Believers (as), in a tradition about ignorance, states:

اَلجَهْلُ دَاءٌ وَعَیَاءٌ.

Ignorance is a kind of illness and disability.(1)

اَلجَهْلُ أدْوَأُ الدَّاءِ.

Ignorance is the most severe illness.(2)

الجَهْلُ مُمِیتُ الأحْیَاءِ وَمُخَلِّدُ الشَّقَاءِ.

Ignorance kills the alive and perpetuates misfortune.(3)

الجَاهِلُ لاَ یَعْرِفُ تَقْصِیرَهُ وَلاَ یَقْبَلُ مِنَ النَّصِیحِ لَهُ.

The ignorant does not recognize his own fault and does not accept the advice of the benevolent.(4)

الجَاهِلُ مَیِّتٌ وَإنْ کَانَ

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 73, tradition 1094; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 868, Al-Jahl, tradition 2798.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 73, tradition 1095; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 868, Al-Jahl, tradition 2799.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 75, tradition 1164; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 868, Al-Jahl, tradition 2802.
4- Ghurar al-Hikam: 75, tradition 1152; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 870, Al-Jahl, tradition 2817.

حَیّاً.

An ignorant person is dead, though he is apparently alive.(1)

الجَاهِلُ صَخْرَهٌ لاَ یَنْفَجِرُ مَاؤهَا، وَشَجَرَهٌ لاَ یَخْضَرُّ عُودُها، وَأرْضٌ لاَ یَظْهَرُ عُشْبُهَا.

An ignorant person is like a rock which does not flow water, a tree which does not bear a green leave, or a ground that does not grow a plant.(2)

Imam ‘Ali (as) addresses Allah in one of his supplications this way:

أنَا الجَاهِلُ: عَصَیْتُکَ بِجَهْلِی، وَارْتَکَبْتُ الذُّنُوبَ بِجَهْلِی، وَسَهَوْتُ عَنْ ذِکْرِکَ بِجَهْلِی، وَرَکَنْتُ إلَی الدُّنْیَا بِجَهْلِی.

I am an ignorant person, who disobeyed You because of his ignorance, committed sins, forgot Your remembrance, and got interested in the material world.(3)

Bad State

Bad state means immortality that is one of the worst problems. The insightful people believe it is the most severe concealment, which deprives human from understanding the truth, gaining blessings and Allah’s nearness, seeking His way and countenance, comprehending Qur’anic teachings and the traditions,.

کَلاَّ إِنَّهُمْ عَنْ رَبِّهِمْ یَوْمَئِذٍ لَمَحْجُوبُونَ.

Surely on that Day they (the sinners) will be covered from the Mercy of their Lord. (83:15)(4)

The Almighty has stressed on the importance of purifying the soul from vices and adorning it with virtues over any other duty of humans. After swearing eleven times in His Qur’an, the Almighty has stated the eternal fortune and salvation of the purified servants and the disappointment of the sinners:

قَدْ أَفْلَحَ مَنْ زَکَّاهَا. وَقَدْ خَابَ مَنْ دَسَّاهَا.

He will indeed be successful who purifies it (the soul). And he will indeed fail who corrupts it. (91:9-10)

Human’s immoral state leads to moral blindness, remoteness from the truth, deafness to the

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 75, 1163; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 870, Al-Jahl, 2818.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 74, 1123; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 870, Al-Jahl, 2822.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 94/ 219, Al-Yawm Al-Tasi’ wa Al-’Ashrun.
4- Al-Muttafifin 83: 15.

call of Allah and His prophets, and lack of awareness of Allah’s Mercy. The Messenger of Allah (S) said:

خِصْلَتانِ لاَ تَجْتَمِعَانِ فِی مُسْلِمٍ: البُخْلُ وَسُوءُ الخُلُقِ.

A believer does not possess two attributes; stinginess and bad morality.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

لاَ وَحْشَهَ أوْحَشُ مِنْ سُوءِ الخُلُقِ.

No fear is more frightening than bad temper.(2)

سُوءُ الخُلُقِ شَرُّ یَقِینٍ.

Bad-temperedness is the worst companion.(3)

The Messenger of Allah stated as well:

إنَّ العَبْدَ لَیَبْلُغُ مِنْ سُوءِ خُلُقِهِ أسْفَلَ دَرَکِ جَهَنَّمَ.

In fact a servant reaches the farthest position in Hell from his bad-temperedness.(4)

Inadequacy of Acts

If one wants to reach prosperity, spiritual perfection and eventually Paradise, he must act in accord with the Qur’anic verses and the traditions of Prophet’s Household. He must also observe the necessary criteria like perseverance, sincerity and desire in order to be able to reach that perfection.

If one’s acts are devoid of understanding, perseverance, and desire, and not in accord with Allah’s will, and if they are done with dullness, insincerity, stinginess, jealousy, and pride, how can they cause a human to reach salvation and be freed of misfortunes?

The Commander of the Believers, despite having unique spiritual resources, called out Allah, in his prayers at nights:

آهِ مِنْ قِلَّهِ الزَّادِ وَبُعْدِ السَّفَرِ وَوَحْشَهِ الطَّرِیقِ.

Ah betides the limitation of resources, the farness of the destination and the fear from the way!(5)

It is necessary to study about the methods of worshipping performed by Allah’s favorite servants to know about their perseverance, desire, and sincerity in serving Allah, and thus get motivated to serve and worship Allah, out of desire. This

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1- Sharh Nahj Al-Balagha: 6/ 337; Mizan al-Hikmah: 4/ 1536, Al-Khulq, tradition 5097.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 265, tradition 5722; Mizan al-Hikmah: 4/ 1536, Al-Khulq, tradition 5098.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 264, tradition 5697; Mizan al-Hikmah: 4/ 1536, Al-Khulq, tradition 5089.
4- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 5/93, Kitab Riyazat Al-Nafs; Mizan al-Hikmah: 4/ 1536, Al-Khulq, tradition 5101.
5- Al-Manaqib: 2/ 103, Fasl fi Al-Sabigha bi Al—Zyhd; Uddat Al-Da’i: 209; Bihar al-Anwar: 84/ 156, Bab 6, tradition 41.

way, our hearts become illuminated and we get to seek Allah’s path to experience spiritual life.

The martyr, Qazi Nur Allah Shushtari has narrated in his book “Majalis Al-Mu’minin” that Uways al-Qarani said at some nights: “This is the night for genuflection.” And he spent all that night in genuflection. Some other nights he said: “This night is for prostration.” And he spent the night only in prostration. Someone told him: “How do you have the ability of for worshipping for so long at nights?” He answered: “Do you think the nights are long? I wish all the world was but one night, so that I could spend it all in one prostration!”

The Restrictive Fetters

High Hopes

Being hopeful is a blessing from the Almighty that is implanted in every human to be able to begin useful, positive activities and be optimistic about their future benefits. If this great blessing did not exist, human being would not be able to anything, would not make any efforts, and would not be interested in any engagement.

It is narrated that once Jesus (as) was in a desert while an old man was plowing the farm by his tools. Jesus (as) looked up to the heaven and prayed: “O Allah! Take his hopes away from him!” Then the old man put away his tools and slept. After a while, Jesus (as) prayed again: “O Allah! Give back his hopes to him!” The old man got up and resumed his work.(1)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

Having hope is a Mercy for my nation. If there existed no hopes, no mother would breastfeed her child neither any farmer would plant any trees.(2)

The fourth infallible Imam, Imam al-Sajjad (as), asked Allah:

أسْألُکَ مِنَ الآمَالِ أوْفَقِهَا.

Fulfill the truest of my hopes!(3)

Positive hopes like reaching scientific positions, moral perfection, salvation in this world and the Hereafter, serving Allah and His servants, and leaving useful works after one’s death, such as mosques, roads, hospitals, schools, and libraries are excellent hopes by

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1- Mizan al-Hikmah: 1/ 184, Al-’Amal, tradition 675.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 74/ 175, Bab 7, tradition 8.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 91/ 155, Bab 32, tradition 22.

a believing servantHereafter.

On the other hand, if human hopes are limited to material issues and exceed the designated and required amount to such an extent that they remove security and calmness, bring about stinginess and greed, and lead to, emulation and pride, they are false hopes and satanic illness. Such hopes makes one forget Allah and the Hereafter, and deprive him of worshipping and obeying Allah.

The traditions narrated from the Prophet’s Household (as) contain valuable facts in this regard. Imam ‘Ali (as), in a tradition says:

الأمَلُ کَالسَّرَابِ؛ یَغِرُّ مَنْ رَآهُ وَیُخْلِفُ مَنْ رَجَاهُ.

Unreal hope is like a mirage, anyone who looks at it is deceived by it and anyone who is hopeful of it would get hopeless.(1)

الأمَلُ خَادِعٌ غَارٌّ ضَارٌّ.

Unreal hopes are deceiving and harmful.(2)

الأمَانیُّ تُعْمِی عُیُونَ البَصَائِرِ.

Unreal hopes blind one’s perception and insight.(3)

الأمَلُ سُلْطَانُ الشَّیَاطِینِ عَلَی قُلُوبِ الغَافِلِینَ.

Unreal hopes are like the sultan of satans that govern the negligent hearts.(4)

Prophet Moses (as), in his prayer, heard Allah saying:

یَا مُوسَی! لاَ تُطَوِّلْ فِی الدُّنْیَا أمَلَکَ فَیَقْسُو قَلْبُکَ، وَالقَاسِی القَلْبِ مِنِّی بَعِیدٌ.

O Moses! Do not have high wishes in the world, since they make you hardhearted, and the hardhearted is away from Me.(5)

Imam Sadiq (as) called Allah in the ‘Arafa supplication:

أعُوذُ بِکَ مَنْ دُنْیاً تَمْنَعُ خَیْرَ الآخِرَهِ، وَمِنْ حَیَاهٍ تَمْنَعُ خَیْرَ المَمَاتِ، وَمِنْ أمَلٍ یَمْنَعُ خَیْرَ العَمَلِ.

I seek refuge to You from the world that hinders a better Hereafter, from a life that prohibits the best death, and from a wish that avoids doing the best deed.(6)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

مَنْ أیْقَنَ

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 312, tradition 7207; Mizan al-Hikmah:1/ 186, Al’Amal, tradition 683.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 313, 7245, Mizan al-Hikmah: 1/ 186, Al-’Amal, tradition 684.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 65, tradition 860; Mizan al-Hikmah: 1/ 186, Al-’Amal, tradition 685.
4- Ghurar al-Hikam: 312, tradition 7206; Mizan al-Hikmah: 1/186, Al-’Amal, tradition 686.
5- Al-Kafi: 2/ 329, Bab Al-Qiswa, tradition 1; Mizan al-Hikmah: 1/ 188, Al-’Amal, tradition 718.
6- Iqbal: 390; Mizan al-Hikmah: 1/186, Al-’Amal, tradition 690.

أنَّهُ یُفَارِقُ الأحْبَابَ وَیَسْکُنُ التُّرَابَ وَیُوَاجِهُ الحِسَابَ وَیَسْتَغْنِی عَمَّا خَلَّفَ وَیَفْتَقِرُ إلَی مَا قَدَّمَ کَانَ حَرِیّاً بِقِصْرِ الأمَلِ وَطُولِ العَمَلِ.

One who is sure he would get separated from his friends after death, would be placed in the earth, would be probed by Allah, would get needless of what he has left in the world and in need of what he has sent before, is deserved to have limited wishes and high attempt.(1)

High hopes can severely harm humans, depriving him of Allah’s blessings. Human being, from the time of birth in itself, is like a fertile land. If this productivity is maintained together with the raindrops of Allah’s mercy then he would bring about the blossoms of good morality and deeds. If, on the other hand, this productive land is turned into a desert because of diseases such as ignorance, pride, greed and high hopes, it would not grow certain beliefs, good morality and deeds.

وَالْبَلَدُ الطَّیِّبُ یَخْرُجُ نَبَاتُهُ بِإِذْنِ رَبِّهِ وَالَّذِی خَبُثَ لا یَخْرُجُ إِلاَّ نَکِدًا کَذَلِکَ نُصَرِّفُ الآیَاتِ لِقَوْمٍ یَشْکُرُونَ.

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

High hopes embrace human heart like a spider’s net, hinders his thought and understanding of the truth; thus making him forgetful of Allah’s remembrance, the Hereafter, and from preparing the provisions for the Last Day.

In fact, having such limited life, a man with high hopes of reaching infinite wealth, property, land,

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 167, Bab 128, tradition 31.

position, and foreign travels, cannot concentrate on Allah’s remembrance or the Last Day, neither on doing good deeds nor compensating his previous sins and faults!

The Messenger of Allah (S) states in an important tradition:

إنَّ أخْوَفَ مَا أخَافُ عَلَیْکُمْ خِصْلَتَانِ: إتِّبَاعُ الهَوَی وَطُولُ الأمَلِ. أمَّا اتِّبَاعُ الهَوَی فَیَصُدُّ عَنِ الحَقِّ، وَأمّا طُولُ الأمَلِ فَیُنْسِی الآخِرَهَ.

In fact, the most severe fear I have for you are two qualities; following the carnal soul and high hopes. Following the carnal soul prevents human from accepting the truth and high hopes prevents remembering the Last Day.(1)

In order to become free of this deadly captivity, it is useful to contemplate on the previous generation’s lives, attend religious gatherings, ponder about the Holy Qur’an and the signs of the Household (as), read historical books and visit the cemetery once in a while.

Truly, when the heart is captured by imaginary hopes and unwise wishes, human loses the true benefits of the world and the Day of Judgment, and even of the life, knowledge and thought.

A Strange Account

The great Iranian poet, ‘Attar Nayshaburi, narrates: Once Hasan Basri was going somewhere when he reached the river of Dajla and waited there. Suddenly Habib ‘A’jami, who was a pious man, came and said: “My teacher! Why are you standing here?” Hasan answered: “I am waiting for a ship.” Habib said: “You have taught me not to be jealous of other people, and not to have high hopes, so that my desire for this world become little, thus, I can then walk on the

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1- Al-Kafi: 8/ 58, tradition 21; Bihar al-Anwar: 2/ 106, Bab 15, tradition 2.

water and cross it!” Then Habib walked on the water and crossed it. Seeing this, Hasan fainted. When he was conscious, he was asked as to why he fainted. So he answered: “He has learned his knowledge from me, but now he reproaches me by walking on the water. If on the Last Day I am ordered to pass the Sirat Bridge(1) and I am incapable of it, what will I do?(2)“ Then he asked Habib: “How could you reach such a position?” He replied: “O Hasan! I whiten my heart and you blacken the papers!” So Hasan said: “My knowledge benefits others, but not myself!”

وَخَدَعَتْنِی الدُّنْیا بِغُرُورِها

And this world with its delusions has deceived me.

The goodness and fraud of this world should be evaluated with regard to one’s thoughts and state of mind. The one, who is defeated by the carnal soul, is drenched in false dreams, and is polluted with moral vices like pride, greed, an envy, is ignorant of Allah, the Hereafter, the Prophets’ prophet hood, the Imam’s Imamate, and the reality of Qur’anic verses. Such a person is easily deceived by worldly material, luxurious life, wealth and worldly positions and considers these as the only truth. He thus spends all his lifetime gaining these worldly goals. Eventually, he wakes up on the time of his death when he has to depart, and finds his worldly aims as mere fraud and all his efforts as useless. He is forced to go to the next world without any

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1- A kind of bridge which the righteous only can cross on the road to Paradise.
2-

virtues done.

The pharaohs and Korahs of history were not pharaohs and Korahs from birth; rather they have become the people that they were due to mental illnesses, false viewpoints and untrue estimates.

Someone who does not have a polluted soul, is not engaged in false thoughts, and does not have vices, is well aware of Allah, the Hereafter, the prophets, the Imams and the Holy Qur’an. Such a person considers the world along with all its facilities nothing but a tool for living purely, doing good deeds, and preparing for a better hereafter. He, therefore, utilizes all his lifetime for fulfilling these goals.

The heavenly messengers and the infallible Imams (as) are humans who have not been trapped by the world’s luxuries and have not been deceived by material issues.

The insightful, who see everything through their hearts, have left some advices from themselves that are valuable for the thoughtful people.

Amir al-Mu’minin, Imam ‘Ali (as), states: “I was in a garden of Fadak, which belonged to Hadrat Zahra (as), gardening with a shovel. Suddenly, a lady came to me, who looked great and pretty to me. I thought she was Thaniyya, daughter of ‘Amir Jamhi, who was famous for her beauty among the women of Quraysh. She told me: “O son of Abu Talib! Are you interested in proposing me? If yes, I am ready to become your wife. Then I would help you to fulfill your need for making a living, would guide you to the earth’s treasures, and would govern you

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on the world.” I asked her: “Who are you that I take you as my wife?” She said: “The world!” I said: “Go away and look for a husband other than me, since I have divorced you three times, and there is no return from my decision.”(1)

One, who is deceived by the deceptive world, has made himself unfortunate forever, depriving himself from the blessings of this world and the Hereafter. And one, who is uninterested in this world, has gained a great benefit and an eternal blessing; Allah’s pleasure.

Imam Sadiq (as) states:

مَنْ زَهِدَ فِی الدُّنْیَا أثْبَتَ اللهُ الحِکْمَهَ فِی قَلْبِهِ وَأنْطَقَ بِهَا لِسَانَهُ وَبَصَّرَهُ عُیُوبَ الدُّنْیَا وَدَاءَهَا وَدَوَاءَهَا وَأخْرَجَهُ مِنَ الدُّنْیَا سَالِماً إلَی دَارِ السَّلاَمِ.

One, who is indifferent to the world, Allah would bestow wisdom on his heart, enable his tongue to utter it, make his eye seeing of the world’s faults, illnesses, and treatments, and would eventually transfer him, safe and sound, to the Territory of Peace.(2)

Luqman, the wise, told his son:

یَا بُنَیَّ! إنَّ الدُّنْیَا بَحْرٌ عَمِیقٌ قَدْ غَرِقَ فِیهَا عَالَمٌ کَثِیرٌ، فَلْتَکُنْ سَفِینَتُکَ فِیهَا تَقْوی اللهِ وَحَشْوُهَا الإیمَانَ وَشِرَاعُهَا التَّوَکُّلَ وَقَیِّمُهَا العَقْلَ وَدَلِیلُهَا العِلْمَ وَسُکَّانُهَا الصَّبْرَ.

My son! Indeed the world is a deep see, which has drowned many worlds. So you should travel in it with the ship of piety, load this ship with belief, take a sail of reliance on Allah for the ship, employ a crew of wisdom, a guide of knowledge and passengers of patience and tolerance for it.(3)

The Messenger of Allah (S) said:

کُنْ فِی

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 84, Bab 123, tradition 47.
2- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 16/ 10, Bab 62, tradition 21827.
3- Al-Kafi: 1/ 15, Kitab Al-’Aql wa Al-Jahl, tradition 12.

الدُّنْیَا کَأنَّکَ غَرِیبٌ أوْ کَأنَّکَ عَابِرُ سَبِیلٍ، وَعِدْ نَفْسَکَ فِی أصْحَابِ القُبُورِ.

Be present in this world as if you are an alien, or a passing traveler, and consider yourself as the dead ones.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

یَا بْنَ جُنْدَبٍ! إنْ أحْبَبْتَ أنْ تُجَاوِرَ الجَلِیلَ فِی دَارِهِ وَتَسْکُنَ الفِرْدَوْسَ فِی جِوَارِهِ فَلْتَهُنْ عَلَیْکَ الدُّنْیَا.

O son of Jundab! If you like to be Allah’s neighbor in His House in the Hereafter and be with Him in His paradise, this world should be worthless for you.(2)

The Qur’anic verses and the traditions of Prophet’s House (as) imply that if the world is employed to do good deeds and advantageous performances, in order to construct the hereafter fruitful, this is a fine worthy world. If, on the other hand, it is used for badness, oppression, and sins, and destroys the hereafter, it is indeed a worthless world.

In general, the goodness or badness of the world depends on the people’s ideas and performances. If one acts with belief, morality and good deeds, living in the world is certainly for his benefit. But if he lives in the world with disbelief, idolatry, bad morality, and wrongdoing, the world is harmful for him.

As a result, it is not possible to judge the world without knowing about the human’s relationship with it as well as his performance in it. For those people for who the world is considered deceitful, it is said: All the badness is gathered in a house, whose key is love for the world. Entering the world

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 70/ 99, Bab 122, tradition 86.
2- Tuhaf Al-’Uqul: 303; Bihar al-Anwar: 75/ 281, Bab 24, tradition 1.

is easy, but exiting it safely is difficult.

If the hereafter were a lasting clay container and the world were a temporary golden one, the hereafter would still be deserved to be loved by the people. However it the hereafter that is like a golden and permanent container and the world is like an ending clay one.

Abu Hazim Makki said: “It is supposed that you avoid the world because I was informed that on the Last day the servant is brought into account and a caller will call on behalf of Allah that this is a servant who belittled what Allah praised and liked whatever Allah disliked.”

وَنَفْسی بِخِیانَتِها وَمِطالی

My own soul with its offences and my dilly-dallying have deceived me.

The soul is a phenomenon, which is impossible or at least difficult for one to understand, but recognizing its signs, as mentioned in Qur’an and the traditions are not as hard.

If the soul is not put into training and through purification, it would become polluted with whims and desires, and then committing any sins would become easy for it.

Whim lexically means “falling down or moving in a wrong direction” and also “extreme desire for anything”. Desire implies “collapse, corruption, and being misled”. Psychologically, desire means “a stressful motion in human soul that does not leave him relaxed, such as love, hatred, and wrath.”

One who is desirous for something in every moment does not have the power to move towards perfection. Achieving perfection requires calmness and peace of the mind. As far as

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there are desires, there is no peace and the mind then does not govern the soul. A child is naturally desirous, so he should be watched closely so that he may not get accustomed to being desirous. Women are also desirous by nature, because they are perfect in nature. Moreover, this is a necessity for women, because they are created for managing the internal affairs of the house and they should pay attention to the details. What harms women more than other things is jealousy which they should try and control through training and trying.

In general, if the desire is left with no reign, it would change into lust. And if wisdom cannot rule this lust, it may transgress and lead to insanity. This insanity is quite visible in people’s greed and ambition. Such people are like the deaf and the blind and would do anything to reach their purpose. For doing so, they violate all social and religious sanctities and may even become disloyal to their friends and their country. No one should trust the friendship of such people, because they have only one single beloved for which they can sacrifice all other dear ones. Those who suffer from the insanity of greed only like those people who are ready to be a tool in their hand, for facilitating their evil intentions, thus they generally hate piety and the pious ones.

People’s desires turns to severe lust and lust makes them insane because a strong lust destroys their thinking and

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wisdom.

The extreme desire for positions is the most severe lust, which has harmed mankind more than other lusts. This lust has colored the pages of history in red, causing people to kill their fathers, brothers and sons.

It should be pointed out that by following the carnal soul it is only referred to the harmful aspects of it that causes lusts and desires. In fact, no one should completely ignore his soul, as some of the seekers of truth have wrongly misunderstood. But since humans are naturally more inclined to the negative aspects of their souls that is engaging in wrongdoing, the religious leaders have warned us against the carnal soul entirely. That’s why during preaching the warnings are heavier than the hopes. Humans are inclined to a variety of social and personal attempts called the instincts, most of which lead to selfishness. And this selfishness is laid in human nature, out of Allah’s higher wisdom, for the continuation of life and steps of perfection.

This innate selfishness should be controlled by belief in Allah, the Resurrection, and spiritual relationship with the prophets and the infallible Imams, as well as by accomplishing the religious duties and observing the rights of other people, so that selfishness does not begin its reign. An extremely selfish person thinks about nothing but his personal benefits. This devilish vice would harm the selfish person in the first place, and the society at large. For instance anger is a prerequisite of selfishness, but it should be controlled and

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only employed for defending one’s life, wealth, reputation, country and right, not for bothering the weak. Extreme anger is savagery and an insignificant one lacks zeal.

Freedom, which is another instance, is the fruit of life and the prerequisite of human will, because it prevents him from being limited by others’ wills. But this innate tendency should be used wisely and moderately. If the blessing of freedom is used excessively, it leads to chaos. If it is used inadequately, it causes captivity and oppression.

Human instinct of loving wealth is also a decent one to the extent that it does not lead to malice on one hand, and illegal activities, such as theft, embezzlement, and gambling to gain it, on the other.

The best position in relationships with others is good morality, which should be kept in a moderate state, not to violate anyone’s rights.

Sociability and happiness with others is acceptable to the extent that it does not turn into unsuitable mockery. Mentioning friends’ virtues is encouraging them to goodness, but it should not lead to flattery(1). From the above-mentioned issues, the vices of the soul, which is not adorned with religious training, becomes clear.

Descriptions of the Soul

The Holy Qur’an has cited some descriptions for the soul that emerge due to human inattention to the religious and moral facts:

1. The carnal soul, 2. The corrupting soul, 3. The fooling soul, 4. The reducing soul, 5. The pledged soul, 6. The desirous soul, 7. The woeful soul.

The Qur’anic verses containing these descriptions of the soul are in

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1- Ilm Al-’Akhlaq: 101.

order:

إِنَّ النَّفْسَ لأَمَّارَهٌ بِالسُّوءِ إِلاَّ مَا رَحِمَ رَبِّی.

Most surely man’s soul is prone to evil, unless my Lord do bestow His Mercy. (12:53)

وَقَدْ خَابَ مَنْ دَسَّاهَا.

And he will indeed fail who corrupts the soul. (91:10)

وَمَنْ یَرْغَبُ عَنْ مِلَّهِ إِبْرَاهِیمَ إِلاَّ مَنْ سَفِهَ نَفْسَهُ.

And who forsakes the religion of Ibrahim but he who makes himself a fool. (2:130)

قَالَ بَلْ سَوَّلَتْ لَکُمْ أَنفُسُکُمْ أَمْرًا.

Nay your souls have made the matter light for you. (12:18)

کُلُّ نَفْسٍ بِمَا کَسَبَتْ رَهِینَهٌ.

Every soul is held in pledge for what it earns. (74:38)

وَأَمَّا مَنْ خَافَ مَقَامَ رَبِّهِ وَنَهَی النَّفْسَ عَنْ الْهَوَی، فَإِنَّ الْجَنَّهَ هِیَ الْمَأْوَی.

And as for him who fears to stand before his Lord and forbids the soul from low desires, then surely the garden- that is the abode. (79:40-41)

أَنْ تَقُولَ نَفْسٌ یَا حَسْرَتَا عَلَی مَا فَرَّطْتُ فِی جَنْبِ اللَّهِ.

Lest a soul should say: O woe to me! For what I fell short of my duty to Allah. (39:56)

Shaykh Baha’i in his valuable book, ‘Arba’in says: “By ‘soul’ in the traditions it is meant the savage powers, like lust and anger.” Ghazali in ‘Madarij Al-Quds’ has mentioned this point in the following sentence: ‘The ‘soul’ is ascribed to all the vices that are in contrast with the power of thinking.’

The Holy Prophet is reported to have said:

أعْدَی عَدُوِّکَ نَفْسُکَ الَّتِی بَیْنَ جَنْبَیْکَ.

The most severe of your enemies is your own soul that is placed between your two sides.(1)

The divine wise men say that the soul is fought only because of its belonging to the body, which

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1- ‘Uddat al-Da’i: 314; Bihar al-Anwar: 64/67, Bab 45, tradition 1.

causes savage and satanic vices. Regardless of this belonging to the body, the soul is really the mind, possessing the virtues of the angels. In this sense, the soul serves to worship Allah and to reach His paradise. Therefore the attributes of the soul’s belonging to the body should be fought so that the soul can reach peace and be safe from its satanic aspects. Otherwise, it would always be full of quarrels and disputes!

The great Persian poet, Sa’di, says: I asked someone the meaning of the following tradition of the Prophet: “The most severe of your enemies is your own soul that is placed between your two sides.” He answered: “It is because if you do good to any enemy he becomes a friend, but your own soul increases its enmity if you do good to it and fulfill its desires!” The followers of the carnal soul, who live unwisely, are the insane.

Buhlul was asked: “How many fools are there in the city?” He replied: “It is very hard to count them. Ask me of the number of the wise men!”

Amir al-Mu’minin’s Viewpoint about Reforming the Soul

Imam ‘Ali (as), out of his full insight into the reality and his knowledge about everything, has recommended some ways for reforming the soul that the great Shi’a scholar, the late ’Amudi, has cited in Ghurar al-°ikam:

إذَا رَغِبْتَ فِی صَلاَحِ نَفْسِکَ فَعَلَیْکَ بِالإقْتِصَادِ وَالقُنُوعِ وَالتَّقَلُّلِ.

When you desired to reform your soul do behave with moderation and contentment, and belittle the world.(1)

صَلاَحُ النَّفْسِ مُجَاهَدَهُ الهَوَی.

Reforming the soul is fighting the

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 237, Islah Al-Nafs, tradition 4766.

desires that destroy it.(1)

سَبَبُ صَلاَحِ النَّفْسِ العُزُوفُ عَنِ الدُّنْیَا.

The key to reforming the soul is preventing oneself from the worldly issues.(2)

دَوَاءُ النَّفْسِ الصَّوْمُ عَنِ الهَوَی.

The remedy for the soul is avoiding the unwise desires.(3)

سَبَبُ صَلاَحِ النَّفْسِ الوَرَعُ.

The key to reforming the soul is avoiding the sins.(4)

إنّ تَقْوی اللهِ دَواءُ داءِ قُلوبِکُمْ… وَطهُورُ دَنَسِ أنْفُسِکُم.

Piety and fearing Allah cures your hearts and purifies your souls.(5)

آفَهُ النَّفْسِ الوَلَهُ بِالدُّنْیَا.

Corruption of the soul is caused by considerable interest in the world.(6)

رَأسُ الآفَاتِ الوَلَهُ بِالذَّاتِ.

The greatest corruption is the lust for illegal enjoyments.(7)

طُوبَی لِمَنْ عَصَی فِرْعَوْنَ هَوَاهُ وَأطَاعَ مُوسَی عَقْلِهِ.

Blessed is he who fights the Pharaoh of his soul and obeys the Moses of his wisdom.(8)

This divine statement implies that everyone has a Pharaoh and a Moses on his soul and if he wants to reach Moses’ position, he should contrast it to the soul of the Pharoah, or else he would drown in the sea of demise. And if he follows the Moses of wisdom, he would deserve Allah’s praise, as a special believer:

سَلامٌ عَلَی مُوسَی وَهَارُونَ… إِنَّهُمَا مِنْ عِبَادِنَا الْمُؤْمِنِینَ

Peace be on Musa and Haroun… Surely they were both of Our believing servants. (37:120, 122)

Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu'minin (as) has stated:

طَهِّرُوا أنْفُسَکُمْ مِنْ دَنَسِ الشَّهَوَاتِ تُدْرِکُوا رَفِیعَ الدَّرَجَاتِ.

Purify your souls from the pollution of unlawful lusts to reach high spiritual positions.(9)

Anyone who wants to attain a divine position, and desries to be released from the limited cage of nature to the garden of wisdom and understanding, should purify his soul from

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 241, Mukhalifat Al-Hawa, tradition 4881.
2- Hurar Al-Hikam: 136, Al-Dunya Afat Al-nafs, tradition 2386.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 235, Muraqibat Al-Nafs, tradition 4718.
4- Ghurar al-Hikam: 271, Salah Al-Din Bihima…, tradition 5912.
5- Nahj Al-Balagha: 312, Sermon 198, min Khutbat lahu a.s yanbahu Ali Ahata Ilm Allah…
6- Ghurar al-Hikam: 136, Al-Dunya Afat Al-Nafs, tradition 2385.
7- Ghurar al-Hikam: 303, Zam Al-Lizzat, tradition 6923.
8- ‘Uyun al-Hikam wal-Mawa’izh, 314.
9- Ghurar al-Hikam: 340, Tahzib Al-Nafs, tradition 4851.

the pollutions and lusts, and prevent the soul from loving worldly enjoyments, so that he would be adorned with the attributes of angels, and would even reach a position higher than that of the angels.

The divine scholars have stated that human can purify his soul in one of these four ways: 1. Learning from the sinners, 2. Accompanying the wise men, 3. Asking his real friends about his own vices and faults, 4. Avoiding the sins in him that are mentioned by his enemies.(1)

The Description of my Dilly-Dallying

I have dilly-dallied for years and have done nothing for asking repentance, reforming my soul, attaining provisions for the Hereafter, doing good deeds, avoiding sins, and seeking wisdom and insight. The satisfaction with today and tomorrow has deceived me and prevented me from seeking the truth. O Allah! I ask you for a strong will and a power to fulfill my promises so that I may be released for this idleness of mine, as this weakness would eventually harm me, depriving me from Your mercy and forgiveness, and placing me among the disobedient servants.

یا سَیِّدی فَأَسْأَلُکَ بِعِزَّتِکَ أَنْ لا یَحْجُبَ عَنْکَ دُعائی سُوءُ عَمَلی وَفِعالی

O my Lord! So I ask you by Your Might not to let my evil deeds and acts veil my supplication from You.

The Reason for the Obstruction of Supplications

Wrongdoing is a veil that prevents humans from receiving the Divine blessings and Mercy, as well as from the fulfillment of the supplications, except if the sinner repents from his sins. Evil deeds take away the desire and mood of supplication

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1- Hikmat Ilahi: 398-399.

from the servant, preventing him from coming to Allah’s presence. Even if a sinful servant succeeds in calling Allah and asking Him his requests, his supplications would not likely be fulfilled. Deprivation of the servant from the fulfillment of his supplications is in fact him being expelled from the Mercy of his Lord. It has been quoted from a mystical lover of Allah: It is harder for me to get deprived of supplicating than being deprived it from its fulfillment.

In this part of the supplication, the supplicant beseeches to the Almighty and asks him: My Lord! Hinder the effect of my evil doing on the fulfillment of my supplications, so that I can keep on supplicating and You continue accomplishing my prayers, out of Mercy.

It is narrated in a tradition that Amir al-Mu’minin (as) passed a place, together with some of his disciples, where he saw a young man putting his head against a wall, and swearing Allah by His Might to fulfill his request. Imam (as) stated: “His request would be accepted because of such swearing.”

Surely, the Compassionate Lord has the power to hinder the bad effects and open new doors to His servant. He is the One Who prevented the fire from burning Abraham (as). And he is the One Who prevented the knife from cutting the throat of Ismael (as).

وَلا تَفْضَحْنی بِخَفِی مَا اطَّلَعْتَ عَلَیْهِ مِنْ سِرّی

Not to disgrace me through the hidden things You know of my secrets.

Secret-Keeping

The servant should know that Allah is well aware

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of the entire world, all the beings and their hidden and apparent aspects, so there is no unfamiliarity, forgetfulness, or ignorance from Him. He is well aware of the past, present and future events. The hidden side of humans is evident to Him. If He reveals our hidden sins, we would be disgraced before our parents, spouse, children and others. If they know about our hidden sins, they would discard us, and perhaps not want to talk to us anymore.

The servant, in this section of the supplication, beseeches to the Lord to maintain his grace and not disgrace him for his hidden sins.

By murmuring these divine words, the supplicant should be sure that his Lord would never disgrace a repenting sinful servant. The Almighty conceals the sins to such an extent that He has stated about accounting for some of His servants’ deeds:

I account for their deeds Myself, so that their deeds would not get obvious to Prophet Muhammad, who himself is so kind to his Ummah, and so they don’t get disgraced before him.

The fourth infallible Imam has stated some of the attributes of the Almighty in Abu Hamza supplication like this:

سَتّارُ الْعُیُوبِ، غَفّارُ الذُّنُوبِ، عَلاّمُ الْغُیُوبِ، تَسْتُرُ الذَّنْبِ بِکَرَمِکَ، وَتُؤَخِّرُ الْعُقُوبَهَ بِحِلْمِکَ.

O the Concealer of faults, the Forgiver of sins, the Knower of the hidden, You conceal the sins out of Your Might, and You delay the punishments, out of Your Patience.

Some servants of Allah, with their limited capacity, astonishingly conceal others’ faults. If these are the Almighty’s

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servants, how good is the concealer Himself?

Prophet Jacob (as) who wanted to persuade Josef (as) that his brothers had behaved unjustly to him, only heard from him:

عَفَا اللَّهُ عَمَّا سَلَفَ.

Allah forgives what is past… (5:95)

An Astonishing Story on Forgiveness

Abu Abd Al-Rahman Hatam Ibn Yosuf Asam, a noble man from Khurasan, was highly knowledgeable and pious. It has been said that he was named al-Asamm(1) because once a woman came to him to ask something. While talking to him, the woman unintentionally broke wind and got very ashamed. Hatam pointed at his ear, implying that he could not hear her speech. The woman got very happy that she was not disgraced before this knowledgeable scholar. No one was aware of this happening. But Hatam was named Asam from that time, because he pretended to hear badly until that woman was alive. When he passed away, another pious noble man dreamed of him and asked him: “How did Allah account for you?” Hatam answered: “Because I considered what I heard unheard, the Almighty forgave what I had ever done and heard altogether.”

وَلا تُعاجِلْنی بِالْعُقُوبَهِ عَلی ما عَمِلْتُهُ فی خَلَواتی مِنْ سُوءِ فِعْلی وَإساءَتی وَدَوامِ تَفْریطی وَجَهالَتی وَکَثْرَهِ شَهَواتی وَغَفْلَتی

And I ask You not to hasten me to punishment for what I have done in private: my evil acts in secrecy, my misdeeds, my continuous negligence, my ignorance, my manifold passions and my forgetfulness.

According to the Islamic teachings, if the Almighty hastened the people to punishment, not a single being would have remained on earth. But He

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1- Asam in Arabic means severe deafness.

does not hurry in punishing the sinful servants, due to His Mercy, so that they profit from the opportunity, come to Allah with genuine repentance, reform their previous faults and compensate for the previous duties. Moreover, the Almighty does not hasten the sinners to punishment so that if a believing progeny is to appear from them, the punishment would not hinder it. Also He postpones the punishment because of the children’s crying, the believers’ sincere supplication, and the supplicants’ weeping at night and repentance. And if there is no such hindrance, he does not delay the punishment.

Although hastening the sinners to punishment due to their boldness exists in Allah’s system, it can be removed by repentance, reforming the faults, and beseeching to Him, as the people of Prophet Jonah (as) removed the punishment from themselves.

It should be highlighted that if Allah’s punishment arrives, no one has the power to return it. Also sometimes the divine punishment is represented in the world as catastrophes such as famine, heavenly disasters, expensiveness of goods, distrust among people, and eventually spiritual metamorphosis.

The signs of inner metamorphosis are mentioned in an important tradition of the Prophet’s (as), in address to Imam ‘Ali (as):

یَا عَلِیُّ! إنَّ القَوْمَ سَیُفْتَنُونَ بَعْدِی بِأمْوَالِهِمْ وَیَمُنُّونَ بِدِینِهِمْ عَلَی رَبِّهِمْ وَیَتَمَنَّوْنَ رَحْمَتَهُ، وَیَأمَنُونَ سَطْوَتَهُ، وَیَسْتَحِلُّونَ حَرَامَهُ بِالشُّبُهَاتِ الکَاذِبَهِ وَالأهْوَاءِ السّاهِیَهِ، فَیَسْتَحِلُّونَ الخَمْرَ بِالنَّبِیذِ، وَالسُّحْتَ بِالهَدِیَّهِ وَالرِّبَا بِالبَیْعِ.

O ‘Ali! Soon after me, the nation is examined by its properties, they ask favor from their Allah for embracing the religion, they hope for His

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Mercy, and consider themselves safe from His punishment, they make His unlawful lawful, with lying and passions, so they make the intoxicant drink a lawful drink, the unlawful wealth a lawful gift and granting, and the usury a lawful business for themselves.(1)

In fact, if people’s hearts have not metamorphosed to a satanic state, due to insistence on evil doing, how can they consider Allah’s unlawful issues, such as the intoxicant drink, unlawful wealth, and usury as lawful so easily? These are the signals of the transformation heart, which is in reality part of Allah’s punishment, as was depicted in the appearance of the disobedient Israelite people whose sinners were addressed by Allah’s punishment call:

…فَقُلْنَا لَهُمْ کُونُوا قِرَدَهً خَاسِئِینَ.

…so we said to them: ‘Be as apes, despised and hated. (2:65)’

Imam ‘Ali (as) in these sentences has referred to four evil doings: 1. Dissipation, 2. Ignorance, 3. Passion, 4. Forgetfulness.

Dissipation

By dissipation, it is meant negligence in worshiping and in obeying Allah, as well as in serving His servants and doing good. The divine teachings have warned people against dissipation, considering it as an extreme harm that prevents them from benefiting the divine blessings.

التَّفْرِیطُ مُصِیبَهُ القَادِرِ.

Dissipation is the competent person’s disaster.(2)

ثَمَرَهُ التَّفْرِیطِ النَّدَامَهُ، وَثَمَرَهُ الحَزْمِ السَّلاَمَهُ.

The result of dissipation is regretful ness, and the fruit of prudence is safety.(3)

الجَنَّهُ غَایَهُ السَّابِقِینَ، وَالنَّارُ غَایَهُ المُفَرِّطِینَ.

Paradise is the fate of the forerunners and Inferno is the destiny of the dissipaters.(4)

The sixth infallible Imam, Imam Sadiq (as), stated:

مَنْ فَرَّطَ تَوَرَّطَ.

One who dissipates would severely get into

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1- Nahj Al-Balagha: sermon 156, wa min kalam lah a.s khataba bihi ahlu Basra…; Bihar al-Anwar: 56/ 100, Bab 4, tradition 32.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 479, Mutafarriqat Ijtima’i, tradition 11009.
3- Nahj Al-Balagha: Hikmat 181.
4- Nahj Al-Balagha: 221, sermon 157, wa min khutbat lau a.s yahuthu Al-nas ala Al-taqwa.

troubles.(1)

Ignorance

Ignorance of the truths of the world and the Hereafter, as well as being unaware of the duties and rights of oneself and the others is like a dangerous illness. If this illness is not cured via acquiring knowledge and understanding, it would bring about permanent harm, disgrace, and ruin. Some of the traditions on ignorance were mentioned in previous pages under the explanation for the phrase “I have been audacious in my ignorance.”

Passion

Passion means an extreme desire for anything, gaining of which is a human goal. If this desire is for untrue and unlawful, it leads to committing sins and to the corruption of the spirit, and eventually results in the punishment in this world and the next one.

Longing too much for the worldly issues is the main cause of passion. This extreme craving, together with satanic temptations and accompanying the sinners, nourishes the tree of wrongdoing, the damned branches of which are various sins. It causes distance from Allah, deprivation from His Mercy, disgrace in the world, and punishment in the Last Day.

This dangerous tree would not be destroyed except by accepting advises, repentance and returning to Allah, and reflection and concentration on the course of the events.

The truthful servants say: The most dangerous branches of the passion tree, which have grown in most souls and led to many sins and immoralities, are seven: 1. Passion for positions and superiority, 2. Passion for wealth and belongings, 3. Passion for palaces and expensive mansions, 4. Passion for relationship with

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1- Tuhaf al-’Uqul: 356.

pretty women, 5. Passion for delicious foods and intoxicant drinks, 6. Passion for various splendid clothes, and 7. Passion for associating with the wrongdoers and the sinners.

These seven passions unintentionally stimulate seven satanic vices, depriving human heart from the rays of understanding: 1. Pride, 2. Hypocrisy, 3. Jealousy, 4. Greed, 5. Stinginess, 6. Oppression, and 7. Wrath.

Explanation of each of these seven vices and their destructive outcomes requires a separate book.

Those who have fell down into the well of passions, when startled by the messenger of death, finally understand that they have harmed themselves greatly, replacing a fine blissful Hereafter with a meek world, whose happiness is simultaneous with grief and whose enjoyment with displeasure.

The Unlucky Prince

The state of those entangled in the trap of the world and drowned in the darkness of passions is like that of a young prince whose father inclined to prepare his marriage, and thus a uniquely beautiful princess was proposed to and chosen for him.

When everything was ready for the wedding ceremony, everyone from the ordinary people to the noble ones were invited to the palace, were treated with gifts and various meals, and were happy of the cheerfulness and astonished with the splendor of the reception.

The angel-like bride was brought into the bridal chamber with make-up and diverse adornments, but the groom was absent and was not found in spite of a thorough search. On that very night, the groom had drunk excessive wine, and his mind had darkened, just as his luck. As we

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was in a state of drunkenness, he left the feast unknowingly and passed some alleys. There he reached a crypt of the Zoroastrians, in which they usually laid the bodies of their dead, lighting up fires and candles beside them.

Seeing the crypt, the young intoxicated prince conceived it as the bridal chamber and entered it. There, the body of a dead old woman, still intact, was put by the Zoroastrians. The unlucky drunk prince hugged the dead body passionately all night.

When he was sober again with the next morning breeze and found himself in a terrifying crypt by an ugly dead body, he almost died with embarrassment and shame. He kept thinking of how he could hide this happening from others when suddenly his father, along with their servants, found him and knew about the disgrace!

This is a panorama of the lives of those who have been deceived by an unpleasant domain of passions, exchanging a lucky Hereafter with it! Imam Sadiq (as) has narrated from his father, from the messenger of Allah (S), who stated:

طُوبَی لِمَنْ تَرَکَ شَهْوَهً حَاضِرَهً لِمَوْعُودٍ لَمْ یَرَهُ.

Blessed is the one who leaves a present passion for getting an unseen promised Paradise.(1)

حُفَّتِ الجَنَّهُ بِالمَکَارِهِ وَحُفَّتِ النَّارُ بِالشَّهَوَاتِ.

The Paradise is enveloped with the hardness of worship and obedience, and the Fire is surrounded by the passions.(2)

Someone told the fifth infallible Imam, Imam al-Baqir (as): “My worship and fasting are little, but I am willing not to have unlawful sustenance.” The Imam (as) told him:

وَأیُّ اجْتِهَادٍ أفْضَلُ

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1- Amali, Mufid: 51, Al-majlis Al-Sadis, tradition 18.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 72, Bab 62.

مِنْ عِفَّهِ بَطْنٍ وَفَرْجٍ!

No deed is better than avoiding unlawful sustenance and passions.(1)

The messenger of Allah (S) said:

أکْثَرُ مَا تَلِجُ بِهِ أُمَّتِی النَّارَ الأجْوَفَانِ: البَطْنُ وَالفَرْجُ.

The most common reason for which my nation enters the Hell is passion of the belly and sexual passion.(2)

Forgetfulness

Forgetfulness means unawareness of something one has been aware of before. Too much engagement in worldly issues, appearance, and desires are all due to forgetfulness of Allah, the Day of Judgment, obedience, and worship.

Amir al-Mu’minin, ‘Ali (as), in his wise advices, warns people of the damages of forgetfulness:

الغَفْلَهُ أضَرُّ الأعْدَاءِ.

Forgetfulness is the most harmful enemy.(3)

وَیْلٌ لِمَنْ غَلَبَتْ عَلَیْهِ الغَفْلَهُ فَنَسِیَ الرِّحْلَهَ وَلَمْ یَسْتَعِدَّ.

Woe to the one who is overcome by forgetfulness, hence he forgets his immigration to the next world and would not get prepared for it.(4)

مَنْ غَلَبَتْ عَلَیْهِ الغَفْلَهُ مَاتَ قَلْبُهُ.

One, who is overcome by forgetfulness, his heart dies.(5)

دَوَامُ الغَفْلَهِ یُعْمِی البَصِیرَهَ.

Continuation of forgetfulness blinds human insight.(6)

Imam Hasan Mujtaba (as), the second infallible Imam, stated:

الغَفْلَهُ تَرْکُکَ المَسْجِدَ وَطَاعَتُکَ المُفْسِدَ.

Ignoring the worship at mosque and obeying the corrupted people are signs of forgetfulness.(7)

وَکُنِ اللّهُمَّ بِعِزَّتِکَ لی فی کُلِّ الاَْحْوالِ رَؤوفاً وَعَلَیَّ فی جَمیعِ الاُْمُورِ عَطُوفاً

And by Your Might, O Allah! Be kind to me in all states and be gracious to me in all affairs!

No one in the world can describe Allah’s kindness, however knowledgeable he or she may be. But His kindness can be understood from pondering on Qur’anic verses and the traditions of the Prophet’s Household (as). The easiest way for recognizing the Mercy of

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 269, Bab 77, tradition 4.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 269, Bab 77, tradition 5.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam, 265, tradition 5744; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4362, Al-Ghifla, tradition 15135.
4- Ghurar al-Hikam, 146, tradition 2656; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4362, Al-Ghifla, tradition 15143.
5- Ghurar al-Hikam, 266, tradition 5765; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4372, Al-Ghifla, tradition 15207.
6- Ghurar al-Hikam, 266, tradition 5762; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4372, Al-Ghifla, tradition 15208.
7- Bihar al-Anwar: 75/ 114, Bab 19, tradition 10; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4372, Al-Ghifla, tradition 15203.

the Almighty is paying attention to the instances in which His Mercy can be perceived.

It is narrated form the Prophet of Islam (S): I asked presented some requests before Allah, one of them was: “O Allah! Leave my nation’s deeds to me to account for them.” I was then addressed: “Even though you are the Prophet of kindness, but you are not the most Merciful. If you are informed of some of the sins of your people, you would hate them; let only Me know about their sins.

O Muhammad! I would account for them in such a way that no one would get informed of their sins, not even you. So when I hide their sins from you, who are the manifestation of kindness, I would certainly hide their sins from others too.

O Muhammad! If you have a prophethood of kindness to them, I have Godly Mercy to them. You are their prophet, while I am their Lord. If you are with them today, I have been kind to them from the very beginning and will be so until eternity.

The Sinner and Allah’s Forgiveness

Shaykh Baha’i says: A reliable man told me about a sinner who had died and his wife asked the people for help the washing, shrouding, and burial of his body. But they hated the dead sinful man so much that no one cooperated with his wife. Hence, she had to hire someone to bring him to the city’s public prayer mosque so that the believers might help hold the ritual there.

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But still no one attended! So she asked the hired man to take the dead body to the desert and bury it without washing and shrouding.

There was a mountain near that desert in which a pious man lived. He had spent all his life in worshipping Allah and the people living there knew him for his piety. As soon as he saw the sinful man’s body, he went to attend his burial ritual. When the neighboring people heard it, they rushed to accompany the pious man too.

People asked the pious man why he was attending the sinner’s ritual. He answered: “In my dream, I was told to come to this site of the desert where a single woman is accompanying a dead body, and pray for it, since he is forgiven.”

Everyone was astonished at this happening. The pious man called the sinner’s wife and asked about her husband. She answered: “Most of the days he was engaged in one sin or the other.” The pious asked her again: “Had you seen any good deeds from him?” She replied: “I saw three good deeds from him; first that everyday after committing sin, he changed clothes, and began praying humbly, second that his home was never void of orphans and he was more kind to them than to his own children, and third whenever he got up at night, he cried and said: O Allah! Where in the Hell will you place this sinner?!”

The Servant of ‘Abdullah al-Mubarak

Attar Nayshaburi says: ‘Abdullah Mubarak had a servant and

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had promised to set him free if he could work and pay back as much as his price. One day someone told ‘Abdullah: “Your servant opens the graves at night, steals the shrouds of the dead bodies to sell them and pays you!” ‘Abdullah was very upset at hearing this. One night, he secretly followed the servant to the cemetery where the latter entered a grave, put on old clothes and a chain around his neck, placed his face on the ground, and began supplicating and crying.

Seeing this, ‘Abdullah hid in a corner and began weeping silently. The servant continued worshipping until the dawn. Then he exited the grave and went toward the city. He entered the first mosque he saw for the Morning Prayer. After his prayer, he said: “My true Lord! Another night finished and my master asks me for Drachmas now. O Allah! You are the Provider of the poor and the Supplier of the unfortunate.” At that time, a heavenly light appeared out of which a gold Drachma was put in the servant’s hand. Observing this, ‘Abdullah was greatly astonished, went toward the servant, embraced him and said: “May Allah sacrifice me for you! I wish you were my master and I were your servant!” The servant said: “O Allah! No one knew this secret of mine. Now that it is revealed, I don’t want to be alive anymore; take me to Yourself!” So he passed away in ‘Abdullah’s hands. ‘Abdullah buried him in the same

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old clothes. That night, he dreamed of the Messenger of Allah (S) and prophet Abraham, who were coming to him on a horse, and told him: “Why did you bury our friend in old clothes?!”

In fact, the Almighty has Mercy on His servants in all states and in different forms, especially in the state of supplication and prayer.

إِلهی وَرَبّی مَنْ لی غَیْرُکَ أَسْأَلُهُ کَشْفَ ضُرّی وَالنَّظَرَ فی أَمْری

My Allah and My Lord! Have I any but You from whom to ask remedy of my affliction and regard for my affairs?

My Lord and My Allah! Do I have any source of blessing and mercy, but You? I ask You for the remedy of my affliction and bad state, and attention to my life affairs.

My Lord! There is someone who can alleviate my misery, Who is powerful in every aspect, does not deprive me of His mercy, is not mean, and no one has the power to keep His mercy away from me. The One Who has all these perfect attributes and is away from any fault, is You.

If I seek refuge to anyone except You for the remedy of my affliction and ask him my request, he would not be kind to me, would not be able to solve my problem, would be unkind in fulfilling my wish, or Your Will would hinder his relationship with me. Therefore he cannot do anything for me. Hence I should not rely on Your creatures and wholly rely on You. I should be hopeless

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of all beings, like my relatives and friends and beseech only from You. I should humbly ask You for the remedy of my afflictions, difficulties, bad states and vices. I should ask You to save me from calamities, harms, and mental and spiritual illnesses.

One should always have hope only in Allah’s Mercy and should beseech to Him, in such a way that as if he is drowing in the middle of sea, with no relations, assistance, dependence and worldy reliance on anyone but Allah. As the Almighty told Jesus (as):

یَا عِیسَی، اُدْعُنِی دُعَاءَ الْغَرِیقِ الْحَزِینِ الَّذِی لَیْسَ لَهُ مُغِیثٌ.

O Jesus! Call me like the calling of one who has no supporter when being drowned!(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

إذَا أرَادَ أحَدُکُمْ أنْ لاَ یَسْألَ رَبَّهُ شَیْئاً إلاّ أعْطَاهُ فَلْیَیْأسْ مِنَ النَّاسِ کُلِّهِمْ وَلاَ یَکُونَ لَهُ رَجَاءٌ إلاَّ عِنْدَ اللهِ، فَإذَا عَلِمَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ ذَلِکَ مِنْ قَلْبِهِ لَمْ یَسْألِ اللهَ شَیْئاً إلاّ أعْطَاهُ.

Whenever one of you wishes to gain whatever he wants fromAllah, he should be hopeless of all the people and just be hopeful of the Almighty. When Allah sees such reliance in His servant’s heart, He will grant whatever the servant wants from Him.(2)

The one who says ‘O Allah! My Lord!’ deserves to be free from all reliance and dependence, except that which is from the true Creator. Such a person should observe the world, its wealth, position, passion, and material things as a blessing and a tool granted by Allah for having a sound worldly life and a prosperous

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 14/ 295, Bab 21.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/148, Bab Al-Istighna’ min Al-Nas, tradition 2.

Hereafter. Thus he should not consider these worldly elements as his master; for anyone who accepts anyone else besides Allah, is a polytheist and the prayer of polytheists would never be accepted.

The one who says ‘O my Creator!’ should be free from the sovereignty of other false masters, pharaohs and their traditions. Because if he is dependent upon false masters and follows their traditions, his prayer would not be accepted, even if he faces many hardships.

One should be hopeless of all creatures, which cannot even help to the slightest extent, except by Allah’s will. In this case, he would be wholly dependent on Allah, and should not feel insufficient.

The lovers of Allah who had sufficient knowledge about Him and His creatures and knew well that Allah’s creatures can do nothing to solve their problems, were always in a state of joyfulness and satisfaction towards their Lord, considering Him as the sole problem solver and saying wholeheartedly: ‘My Allah and My Lord’ like Prophet Moses (as) who stated: ‘My Lord! I have something in my poverty which you do not have in all Your resources.’ Then Allah addressed him: ‘What do you have?’ He answered: ‘I have a Lord like You!’(1)

When one cuts his relationship ties with everyone and pays attention only to Allah, He would have mercy on him, grant him blessings, solve his problems, and have regard for all his affairs. In this case, the servant would be accepted before the Almighty and would be subject to His Benevolence,

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1- Nafahat al-Layl: 109.

despite his many sins.

The Tale of the Mother and the Child

An ascetic scholar narrates that a mother expelled his disobedient, disorderly adolescent son from home and told him: “Get out! You are not my child anymore.” He went out and played with other children until the sunset when all of them returned to their homes. When he saw himself alone without a friend, he returned home too and saw the door closed. So he put his head on the door, cried and called his mother to open the door for him, but the mother refused to do so. Meanwhile a pious scholar who was passing by showed pity for the son, knocked at the door, and asked his mother to allow him to come home again. The mother said: “I will accept your meditation provided that you write something so that whenever my son disobeyed again, he get out of home and do not call me his mother anymore.” The scholar wrote the same thing and gave it to the young boy’s mother, hence they reconciled again.

A while later, that scholar passed the same house and saw the young boy weeping again and telling his mother: “Do whatever you want, but don’t leave me alone!” But the mother did not accept. The pious man waited to see what happens next. He saw the boy weeping continuously until he fainted from sorrow. The mother who was looking at her child got upset, opened the door, and embraced him, saying: “O the fruit of my eyes! Come to home

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with me! If I refused to let you in, I was not serious, but I wanted to prevent you from disobedience and wrongdoing.”

Likewise, if a sinner feels his repentance and weeping is not accepted, he should not get hopeless; rather he should ask Allah repeatedly, like that young boy so that he would get subjected to Allah’s mercy and forgiveness. And if Allah has regard for human affairs, his affairs would become organized, his problems solved, and his poorness elevated, because Allah’s regard, mercy and blessing are infinite.

The Healing Regard

The biography of the king, Mahmud Ghaznawi, reads: One day he passed by the seashore and saw a sorrowful youngster who had spread his net for fishing.

The king asked the young man the reason for his sadness. He replied: “My seven brothers and I are poor orphans and have an elderly mother. After my father’s death, I have been responsible for making a living for my family. But everyday I can catch only one or two fish, which is not sufficient for the expenses of my big family.” The king told him: “Would you like me to help you with the fishing today?” The young man accepted. So the king said again: “Pull out the net in the name of your coworker this time.” The young man waited for a while and then took the ropes of the net to pull it out, but he couldn’t, so the king and his servants helped him pull it out. When it was pulled out of

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the water there were lots of fish in it.

After returning to the palace, the king sent someone to bring his coworker to him and placed him beside himself, behaving kindly towards him. Everyone said: “This is a poor man whose place is not beside you.” But the king answered: “He is my coworker and should benefit from whatever I possess.”

In other words, when the regard of a worldly king improves someone’s life to this extent and alleviates his troubles, how influential is the regard of a True King, whose perfection is infinite and whose mercy is countless, to a poor destitute human, who has turned to Him for his material and spiritual needs!

Allah’s regard, out of His mercy, is a regard that saved Noah (as) and the believers from the horrible storm, turned Moses’ (as) staff into a snake to oppose Pharaoh’s tyranny, rescued the Israelites from among the Nile’s turbulent waves, saved Job (as) from his many calamities, and released Josef (as) from the deepness of the dark well, brining him to the kingdom of Egypt.

The Amazing Story of Hatam al-Asamm

Hatam al-Asamm was among the pious men of his age, but despite his good reputation and authority he was among those who could hardly make the ends meet. However he had a strong belief in and reliance on the Almighty.

One night, while talking with his friends, they spoke about Hajj, the Kaaba pilgrimage. So Hatam heartily desired to go for pilgrimage to Kaaba, the place where Allah’s prophets (as) had humbly worshipped Him.

When Hatam

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returned home, he told his wife and children: “If you allow me to go to Mecca, I will pray for you there.” His wife said: “How do you dare go to pilgrimage while you are well aware of our poverty? This pilgrimage is obligatory only for those who are wealthy.” His children confirmed their mother’s words, except his little girl who said sweetly: “What is wrong with going to this pilgrimage? Let my father go anywhere he wishes, our Provider is Allah, and father is only a mediator for our sustenance. The Almighty can grant us our sustenance through other means, if He wills.” Everyone got aware of the fact in the clever girl’s words and allowed Hatam to go for Hajj and pray for them.

Hatam became very happy, prepared the necessary means for his travel, and joined the pilgrimage caravan. Being informed of the little girl’s words and Hatam’s travel, their neighbors came and reproached her, saying that this travel lasted for months and they could not make a living in their father’s absence. Hatam’s family reprimanded the girl too for not holding back her tongue, which had forced them to allow Hatam to depart.

The little girl was so upset that she burst into tears and at the same time she sincerely raised her hands to the sky and called her Lord: “O Lord! They have always benefited from Your mercy and Blessings and got used to it. Do not despair them and do not make me ashamed!”

While Hatam’s

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family were wondering how they are going to make a living, the ruler of the city, who was returning from hunting thirstily, sent some people to their house to bring him some water.

The ruler’s servants knocked at their door and asked for some water for the thirsty ruler. Hatam’s wife looked up to the sky, astonished, and said: “O Lord! We slept last night without any supper and today the ruler is in need of us!” Then she poured water in a bowl and apologized for the pottery bowl.

The commander asked his disciples: “Whose house is this?” They said: “It’s Hatam al-Asamm’s, who is a pious man. He has gone to pilgrimage and his family is living in a difficult condition.” The ruler said: “We have taken them into trouble asking for water. It is far from generosity for us to put such poor needy people into trouble.” Then he unfastened his golden belt and threw it into Hatam’s house and told his followers: “Throw your belts into this house if you like me.” All his followers did so. When they wanted to come back, the king told that family: “Allah’s praise on you! Now my minister takes the belts and pays you for them.” Soon the minister brought the price of the belts for Hatam’s wife and took the belts back!

Seeing this, the little girl began weeping. Everyone told her: “You should be laughing now not crying, because the merciful Allah has shown us a ray of His mercy

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by improving our life this way.” The girl said: “I am crying because last night we slept hungrily and today a creature of Allah’s had regard for us and enriched us. So how enriching will be Allah’s regard for a servant!” Then she prayed this way: “O Lord! Just as You had mercy toward us and arranged our life, have regard for our father and help him!”

Hatam, on the other hand, was going toward Mecca with the caravan while there was no one poorer than him. He had neither a horse to ride nor enough food to travel easily, but the people of the caravan who knew him helped him a little.

One night, Amir al-Hajj(1) got so seriously ill that the caravan’s doctor could not do anything for him. Amir said: “Is there any pious man in this caravan to pray for me, so that I will be healed?” He was informed of Hatam al-Asamm. So Amir summoned him. The servants rushed and took him to Amir. Hatam greeted and began praying for Amir’s healing beside him. Because of Hatam’s prayer, Allah healed Amir. Therefore Amir showed special attention to Hatam; he ordered to give Hatam a horse and paid for all his expenses until the end of the travel.

Hatam appreciated Amir, and prayed and talked with Allah in a special attitude. When he went to sleep that night, he heard in his dream: “O Hatam! One who has reliance on Me and organizes his affairs by praying to Me,

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1- Amir Al-Hajj was the head of Hajj caravans then.

I would show Mercy to him. Do not worry about your family; I provided their sustenance too.” After getting up, Hatam praised Allah and was astonished at the enormity of His regard.

When Hatam returned from Hajj pilgrimage, his family welcomed him joyfully. Hatam attended to them all, but showed special attention to his little girl, hugged and kissed her, and said: “Some people might apparently be small, but they are great in reality. Allah does not attend to the great ones in terms of age and reputation, but to those who have a greater appreciation of Him. So I invite you to know Allah and rely on Him, because anyone who has reliance on Him would not be left alone by Him.”(1)

The Influential Regard

The great scholar, Sayyid Ja’far Mazari’i, has narrated: A cleric of the great seminary in Najaf could hardly make the ends meet. One day, he addressed Imam ‘Ali (as) in his holy shrine and said: “How do you have such expensive candelabrums in your shrine, while I am so needy?!”

The poor cleric saw Imam ‘Ali (as) in his dream on the same night, who told him: “If you want to live in Najaf, beside my shrine, there would only be this poor life for you. But if you like a wealthy luxurious life, you should move to Hiydar Abad, India to a specific person’s house, and tell him: ‘به آسمان رود و کار آفتاب کند’(2) “After seeing this dream, the poor cleric went to the shrine again and complained:

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1- Anis al-Layl: 292.
2- It will be raised to the position of the sun.

“My life is difficult here in my hometown. How can I move to India?” But he dreamed of the Imam (as) again who told him: “Your solution is what I told you. If you cannot tolerate such condition beside my shrine, you should go to India, to the house of that famous man and tell him: ‘به آسمان رود و کار آفتاب کند’.” After getting up the next morning, the cleric sold all his books and the little furniture he had and went toward India with the help of some generous people. In Hiydar Abad, India, he asked for the house of that person. The Indians were surprised that an ordinary poor cleric is asking about a wealthy man and wants to meet him.

When the cleric reached the rich man’s house, he knocked and the door was opened for him. Then he saw someone coming down the stairs of the mansion and told him: ‘به آسمان رود و کار آفتاب کند’

The rich man immediately called his servant and ordered them to take the cleric inside the house to take a bath, have a rest and change his clothes with luxurious ones.

So the cleric was warmly welcomed and treated well until the next evening. On the next day, the city’s noble ones from various social classes, like the scholars, businessmen, and the rich came to visit him in a splendid hall. The surprised cleric asked someone beside himself: “What is going on here?” “It is the marriage ceremony of the host’s

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daughter.” So the cleric thought to himself he has entered the host’s house on a good day.

When everything was prepared for the ceremony, the wealthy host came to the hall. Everyone stood up for honoring him and he sat in his own place after complimenting the guests. Then he addressed his guests and said: “I grant half of my whole wealth, including a definite sum of money, houses, lands, gardens, cattle, and furniture to this newly arrived cleric from Najaf. You all know that I have only two daughters. I accept him as the husband of my prettier daughter. You religious scholars should now read their marriage sermon.” When the marriage sermon was read, the overwhelmed cleric asked the rich man the reason for all those happenings.

The affluent man said: “Some years ago, I intended to compose a panegyric poem for Imam ‘Ali (as). I could compose one line of a verse, but did not succeed in composing the other line. I went to the Persian poets of India and asked them to compose the second line of this verse, but their composed line was not pleasant enough. I did not like the composed line of Iranian poets either. So I thought my verse has not attracted the influential regard of Imam (as). Then I solemnly vowed to grant half my wealth as well as my prettier daughter to anyone who can compose the other line of my poem. When you came and told me the line, I found out

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that it is very complete and suitable for my line.” The cleric asked him: “What was the first line?” The man answered: “به ذره نظر لطف گر بوتراب کند”(1)

The cleric said: “The second line is not from me, but from Imam (as).” So the rich man prostrated humbly and thanked Allah and then recited:

به ذره نظر لطف گر بوتراب کند به آسمان رود و کار آفتاب کند

When the influential regard of Imam ‘Ali (as) enriches a poor needy person to this extent, what would be the influence of Allah’s regard for His servant?

إِلهی وَمَوْلای أَجْرَیْتَ عَلَی حُکْماً إِتَّبَعْتُ فیهِ هَوی نَفْسی وَلَمْ أَحْتَرِسْ فیهِ مِنْ تَزْیینِ عَدُوّی، فَغَرَّنی بِما أَهْوی وَأَسْعَدَهُ عَلی ذلِکَ الْقَضاءُ فَتَجاوَزْتُ بِما جَری عَلَی مِنْ ذلِکَ بَعْضَ حُدُودِکَ، وَخالَفْتُ بَعْضَ أَوامِرِکَ

My Allah and my Protector! I have myself given a decree against me, I followed the caprice of my own soul and did not defend myself from my enemy, which deluded me through my soul’s caprice and therein destiny favored it. So I crossed some of the barriers and transgressed some of Your statues and disobeyed some of Your Commands.

Duties

Allah wants humans to be adorned with true beliefs whose place is in the heart, virtuous morality that is placed in the soul, and righteous deeds, which are performed by one’s organs; all of which are human duties. Allah has necessitated these duties for us, out of His Wisdom and Mercy, for human expediency in this world and the Hereafter.

If Allah’s will is fulfilled sincerely in

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1- If Abu Turab Imam ‘Ali a.s has regard to a little particle.

all circumstances, one can undoubtedly reach his full perfection and spiritual growth. Such a person would have a prosperous Hereafter, as well as Allah’s satisfaction. Not only will he live a purified life in this world, but also he will live an eternal life in Paradise, along with the prophets, the martyrs, and the righteous servants.

The only hindrance in submitting to Allah’s will is the human carnal soul that causes illogical desires, which may, in turn, attract him to wrongdoing, passions, and finite worldly wealth. These vices deceive a human, imprisons him, and exhausts all his power for reaching them, even to the price of violating the rights of others and the society. Such a person would turn to a wicked one, free of any belief, moral and practical principles, who would not do good to himself and others. He would continue his sinful life heedless of the realities, until death would terminate his life, freeing him and other people from his evilness.

The Messenger of Islam (S) has rightly stated:

أعْدَی عَدُوِّکَ نَفْسُکَ الَّتِی بَیْنَ جَنْبَیْکَ.

The most severe of your enemies is your own soul that is placed between your two sides.(1)

As confirmed by the Holy Qur’an too, human carnal soul is his most severe enemy, because it enjoins to every evil doing and forbids from any good, thus destroying his life in this world and the Hereafter.

It is narrated from Imam al-Ridha (as): Someone asked me about a principle that brings goodness of this world and the Last Day together.

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1- ‘Uddat al-Da’i: 314; Bihar al-Anwar: 64/67, Bab 45, tradition 1.

I told him:

خَالِفْ هَوَاکَ.

Oppose your soul!(1)

The Prophet of Islam (S) said:

أفْضَلُ الجِهَادِ مَنْ جَاهَدَ نَفْسَهُ الَّتِی بَیْنَ جَنْبَیْهِ.

The highest holy war is a war against one’s own soul, between his two sides.(2)

He also told Amir al-Mu’minin (as):

یَا عَلِیُّ! أفْضَلُ الجِهَادِ مَنْ أصْبَحَ لاَ یَهِمُّ بِظُلْمِ أحَدٍ.

O ‘Ali! The best holy war is that of someone who never has the intention to oppress anyone else.(3)

If a human follows the caprice of his own soul, it would deceive him, thus preventing him from the remembrance of Allah, his own death, the Last Day, and his own duties. Allah’s will, on the other hand, which is materialized as human freedom, cooperates with the soul and makes human benefit from it in wrongdoing, instead of fulfilling responsibilities; that is opposite to Allah’s beneficial rules.

فَلَکَ الْحُجَّهُ عَلَیَّ فی جَمیعِ ذلِکَ وَلا حُجَّهَ لی فیما جَری عَلَیَّ فیهِ قَضاؤُکَ وَأَلْزَمَنی حُکْمُکَ وَبَلاؤُکَ

So Yours is the argument against me in all that and I have no argument and I have no argument in what Your destiny put into effect through me therein; nor in what Your decree and Your tribulation imposed upon me.

Allah’s Arguments against Man

A human has no arguments for getting misled and committing sins in this world and the Hereafter to claim innocence before Allah.

If he says: “I did not have the ability,” he has uttered a lie, because he has had the great blessing of a healthy body, which enabled him.

If he says: “I was unaware of Allah’s orders so I could not fulfill my duties,” the

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1- Safinat Al-Bahar: 8/ 298.
2- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 15/ 163, Bab 1, tradititon 20216.
3- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 15/ 162, Bab 1, tradition 20214.

arguments of free time for studying Qur’an and religious books, the opportunity to refer to scholars, and the chance to gain knowledge would be raised against him.

If he says: “I was void of intelligence,” he has certainly lied, because if he did not have intelligence, how could he organize his monetary and economic affairs?!

If he says: “If a prophet was sent from Allah along with the Imams of guidance, I would have followed the signs of truth and guidance,” he would be told: “a hundred and twenty four thousand prophets were sent, as well as twelve Imams to guide the misled. How come you did everything for your economic issues, but not for your spiritual issues?”

If he says: “There was no guiding scholar, book or mosque,” he would be told: “You are not telling the truth, because the voice of Our Guidance was heard from everywhere. But your pride, ignorance, and desirousness prevented you from following the guided route and Allah’s religion.”

According to such facts, Allah has many arguments against humans to condemn them, but a man has no arguments against Allah to acquit himself and escape the chastisement.

Regarding this obvious fact, that is Allah’s argument against human to punish him, only one important tradition is mentioned here, quoted form the most valid Shiite books.

Hamis Ibn Ziyad narrates from Hasan Ibn Muhammad Kindi from Ahmad Ibn Hasan Miythami from Aban Ibn ‘Uthman from ‘Abd al-A’la that:

I heard Imam Sadiq (as) saying: A beautiful woman is brought forth to Allah, in

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the Hereafter, who has committed sins due to her beauty. So, for acquitting herself, she says: ‘O Lord! You created me beautiful, so I was deceived because of my beauty and committed sins.’

Hence Mary (s.a) is brought forth and that sinful woman is asked: ‘Are you more beautiful than her? We created her beautiful, but she maintained her faith and was not deluded by her soul.’ Then a handsome youth is brought forth to Allah, who has done many wrongdoings because of his attraction. He says: ‘O Lord! You created me beautiful, so that my beauty led me to unlawful relationship with women.’

So Josef (as) is brought forth and that man is told: ‘Are you prettier than Josef, who maintained himself from corruption and did not commit sins.’ And another person is then brought who has been deceived by his soul because of his hardships and calamities. He says: ‘O Allah! You put me in various difficulties, so that I lost my patience and committed sins.’ Therefore Jacob (as) is brought and it is said: ‘Were your problems more severe than those of Jacob who suffered from many calamities, but kept himself safe from wrongdoing.’(1)

وَقَدْ أَتَیْتُکَ یا إِلهی بَعْدَ تَقْصیری وَإِسْرافی عَلی نَفْسی مُعْتَذِراً نادِماً مُنْکَسِراً مُسْتَقیلاً مُسْتَغْفِراً مُنیباً مُقِرّاً مُذْعِناً مُعْتَرِفاً لا أَجِدُ مَفَرّاً مِمّا کانَ مِنّی وَلا مَفْزَعاً أَتَوَجَّهُ إِلَیْهِ فی أَمْری غَیْرَ قَبُولِکَ عُذْری وَإِدْخالِکَ إِیّایَ فی سَعَه مِنْ رَحْمَتِکَ

Now I have turned to You, my Allah, after my shortcoming and my immoderation toward myself, proffering

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1- Al-Kafi: 8/228, tradition Ya’juj wa Ma’juj, tradition 291; Bihar al-Anwar: 7/ 285, Bab 13, tradition 3.

my excuse, regretful, broken, apologizing, asking forgiveness, repenting, acknowledging, submissive, confessing. I find no place to flee from what occurred through me, nor any place of escape to which I may turn in my affairs, other than Your acceptance of my excuse and Your entering me into the compass of Your Mercy.

The Mystical Prayer

Imam ‘Ali (as), in this section, mentions all traits that attract Allah’s Mercy and forgiveness; concentration in worship, moderation in desires, regretful apology, brokenness and asking for forgiveness, repenting, confessing to sins, and seeking refuge to Allah.

This beseeching and weeping is something Allah loves to hear from the sinful yet regretful servant.

It is narrated that one of the seekers of Allah’s divine path came to a scholar and said: ‘I am going to Allah’s presence. What gift should I take? Because presenting no gift is mere meanness.’ That scholar told him: ‘Take something which cannot be found there. All the attributes of perfection, such as knowledge, patience, power, mercy, will, compassion, seeing, hearing, righteousness, justice, and might exist there. What are not there are weeping, beseeching and request.’

As every lover wishes the affection and reply of the beloved and every beloved is willing to hear the beseeching sound of the lover, Allah wills to hear the voice of the regretful sinner and the returning of the wrongdoer.

Josef and Zulaykha

Some scholars have quoted that as Zulaykha(1) misused her power and accused Josef to adultery, in order to acquit herself, Josef was imprisoned. But out of her intense affection toward Josef, Zulaykha wished

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1- Potipher’s wife.

to hear his voice and cries. So she ordered one of her servants to whip Josef. Seeing Josef’s divine and enlightened face, the servant could not obey the order. He thus put a thick piece of cloth on Josef and then whipped him. Zulaykha did not hear Josef’s cry and so she ordered the servant to whip him even harder. The servant told Josef: “I think I may fall into trouble for disobeying her, so forgive me for wiping your naked body.” Josef generously accepted, and after being whipped, he cried loudly and painfully and it was enjoyed by Zulaykha.

Prophet Jonah’s People

When the people of Prophet Jonah (as) were informed that he has left them alone and saw the signs of an imminent punishment, they got convinced of the approaching chastisement. A kind scholar told them that the only way to their salvation is apologizing, beseeching, repenting, and confessing to the sins before the Almighty. With such state, all of them, men and women, the old and the young wore old clothes and went towards the desert with bare feet.

Men on one side and women from the other side were repenting and weeping and even the animals accompanied them. They were all confessing to Allah’s unity, beseeched to Him, showed regret, repented from their disbelief, and some of them even said: “O Lord! Jonah had told us to free the slaves so that we will be rewarded. He had told us to help any poor we saw; now we are Your poor

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slaves who have no one except You, so help us!”

Their prayer was accepted by Allah and they were forgiven and saved from the punishment of the cloud and storm. They were all placed under the clouds of Allah’s mercy and their repentance was accepted. So they joyfully returned to their city and resumed their ordinary work and life.

Now, turning to Allah, apologizing, regret, asking for forgiveness and confessing to sins are all real elements of attracting Allah’s forgiveness and mercy.

اللّهُمَّ فَاقْبَلْ عُذْری وَارْحَمْ شِدَّهَ ضُرّی وَفُکَّنی مِنْ شَدِّ وَثاقی، یا رَبِّ ارْحَمْ ضَعْفَ بَدَنی وَرِقَّهَ جِلْدی وَدِقَّهَ عَظْمی، یا مَنْ بَدَأَ خَلْقی وَذِکْری وَتَرْبِیَتی وَبِرّی وَتَغْذِیَتی هَبْنی لإِبتِداءِ کَرَمِکَ وَسالِفِ بِرِّکَ بی

O Allah, so accept my excuse, have Mercy upon the severity of my affliction and release me from the stiffness of my fetters. My Lord, have mercy upon the weakness of my body, the thinness of my skin and the frailty of my bones. O You who raised in my creation, to the remembrance of me, to the nurture of me, to the goodness toward me and to nourishment of me, bestow upon me for the sake of Your having given rise to me with generosity and Your previous goodness to me!

The Presence of the Beloved

In this part of the supplication, the loving, pious, truthful and deserving servant feels that the doors of Allah’s Mercy have opened for him and He is ready to hear His servant’s prayer, so the servant states: accept my excuse that was due to my ignorance, transgression, and

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weakness against my soul. Now by Your Mercy, my youth of transgression has terminated, I have acquired knowledge, have been released of my whims, become strong against wrongdoing, will leave the committing of sins, escape from Satan, turn to Your presence, and try to compensate for my sinful past.

O Lord! My bad state is due to pride, greed, jealousy, stinginess, hypocrisy, and other vices. If this bad state remains in my soul, it would turn into a sinister disease, with no cure. So have mercy on my bad state, so that my bad state would turn into the best state which possesses all the virtues. By Your Mercy, pride is replaced by humility, greed by contentment, jealousy by emulation, stinginess by generosity, and hypocrisy by sincerity.

O Lord! Satanic chains are put into my mind, heart, soul, and organs, preventing me from worshipping, obeying, and doing positive deeds and seeking Your path. Now by Your own Mercy, I am weeping and beseeching to You, stretching out my hand to Your Power so that You may release me from all these chains of satanic desires, and bring me to the great world of freedom.

If You have no Mercy on me in this world, not releasing me from the fetters of carnal soul and moral vices, I will be in fetters of punishment in the Hereafter; the fetters imprisoning and taking me into Hell for the disbelievers and wrongdoers, as You have mentioned in Holy Qur’an.

إِنَّا أَعْتَدْنَا لِلْکَافِرِینَ سَلاسِلا وَأَغْلالاً وَسَعِیرًا.

We have prepared

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for the unbelievers chains and shackles and a burning fire. (76:4)

خُذُوهُ فَغُلُّوهُ. ثُمَّ الْجَحِیمَ صَلُّوهُ. ثُمَّ فِی سِلْسِلَهٍ ذَرْعُهَا سَبْعُونَ ذِرَاعًا فَاسْلُکُوهُ. إِنَّهُ کَانَ لا یُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ الْعَظِیمِ.

Lay hold on him, then put a chain on him, then cast him into the burning fire, then thrust him into a chain the length of which is seventy cubits. Surely he did not believe in Allah, the Great. (69:30-33)

If I am not released from the fetters of my soul, there comes a day when there would be no release for me. Those who are free of satanic fetters are free to do any goodness eagerly and easily. And they depart from this world, by hearing the divine call of:

ارْجِعِی إِلَی رَبِّکِ رَاضِیَهً مَرْضِیَّهً.

Return to your Lord, well-pleased with Him, well-pleasing Him. (89:28)

The soul would fly toward their Lord, remaining under His Mercy forever. But the prisoners of the fetters of the devil cannot obey Allah or do good. They are imprisoned by Satan in this world and would leave the world with much sorrow and regret. In this state, they feel they have lost everything and are in mere poverty. Their wealth, positions, and children are of no use to them and they are drawn towards the Hell by the satanic fetters!

The Wonderful Tale of Harun’s Death

When Harun, the ‘Abbasid ruler, got seriously ill in Khurasan, he had a doctor come from Tous. The doctor ordered to give him his urine sample along with those of other patients and healthy people. The doctor examined the samples one

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by one until it came to Harun’s. So he said: “Tell the owner of this sample to prepare his will, because his strength has weakened drastically.” Hearing this, Harun got disappointed with life and recited an Arabic poem which meant: “The doctor has no treatment and defense against a coming death, otherwise he would not die of the disease he has cured before?!”

He was informed that the rumor of his death is spreading among people, thus he decided to get on a horse and ride among the people, but the animal’s knees suddenly got weak. Harun said: “Get me off the animal because the rumors are obviously true.” He ordered for some shrouds and chose one of them. Afterwards he said: “Prepare a grave for me beside my bed.” Then he looked at the grave and recited these Qur’anic verses:

مَا أَغْنَی عَنِّی مَالِیه. هَلَکَ عَنِّی سُلْطَانِیه.

“My wealth has availed me nothing, my authority is gone away from me. (96:28-29)”

I am a sinner whose wealth does not save him from Allah’s chastisement. Not only my wealth did not rescue me, but also I lost my power and kingdom.(1)

My Allah! Have Mercy upon the weakness of my body, the thinness of my skin, and frailty of my bones. If the fetters of this world remain on me, they would turn into fiery fetters in the Hereafter. Then I should bear them on all my organs despite my weak body, thin skin, and frail bones. In such a state, there would be no

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1- Tafsir Nemuneh: 24/ 264.

death for me and I would remain deep in Hell and burn!

The Exact Estimation

We should be like the man named Towba, who, as Shaykh Baha’i has narrated, always was estimating his own deeds. When he was sixty, he counted all days of his life, which was 21500 days. So he said: “Woe on me! If I have not done but one sin every day, I have done at least 21500 sins until now. Am I to visit my Lord in such a sinful state?” So he cried loudly and fell down to the ground and died!(1)

My Lord! Everything I am, I am Your creature, under Your dominance, Your Will, and Your Intention; I have no escape. O Lord Who have created me from the soil. You had regard for me while I was nothing worthy of note. Then You trained me and had Mercy and Blessings on me. Now I have come to Your presence weeping, broken, humble, to ask You to forgive me because of Your previous goodness and generosity toward me!

یا إِلهی وَسَیِّدی وَرَبّی، أَتُراکَ مُعَذِّبی بِنارِکَ بَعْدَ تَوْحیدِکَ وَبَعْدَ مَا انْطَوی عَلَیْهِ قَلْبی مِنْ مَعْرِفَتِکَ وَلَهِجَ بِهِ لِسانی مِنْ ذِکْرِکَ، وَاعْتَقَدَهُ ضَمیری مِنْ حُبِّکَ، وَبَعْدَ صِدْقِ اعْتِرافی وَدُعائی خاضِعاً لِرُبُوبِیَّتِکَ

My Allah, my Master and My Lord! Can You be seen tormenting me with Your Fire after I have professed Your Oneness; after Your cognition my heart has embraced, the remembrance of You my tongue has constantly mentioned and the love of You to which my mind has clung; after

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1- Tafsir Nemuneh: 24/ 465.

the sincerity of my confession and my supplication, the humble before Your Lordship?

By Your Holy Essence none of the Prophets, Imams, the mystics, the pious, and the repented servants knows You like this; You won’t torment me with Your Fire, after my awareness of these facts by Your own Mercy. Rather all Your pious servants know You as the One Who will have Mercy on me in the Hereafter, will forgive my sins, will place me in Paradise, and will gather me together with Your lovers on the Day of Resurrection.

Oneness

The human who has known the Holy Essence of Allah and His Divine attributes from the Holy Qur’an, the traditions, the believers and by pondering in the creation of the world and its beings would practically and mentally consider any creator, other than Him, untrue and finite. He testifies to Allah’s Oneness verbally and wholeheartedly and denies the living idols. Such a person is called Muwahhid (monotheist). The divine religions of all great prophets were based on the same oneness of Allah. They have invited people to confirm and believe in Allah’s Oneness. As the Holy Qur’an implies, the prophets invited people to practical monotheism, i.e., denying earthly deities.

The theoretical concept of monotheism is important in purifying the minds from disbelief. In this area, the disbelievers who have considered other deities beside Allah are addressed. Also those who believe in the sources of goodness and badness, those who believe in materialization of Allah in other beings, those who believe in

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the gods, those who have considered َAllah as compound such as the Christians, and finally the followers of Mujassama, who have personified Allah, the most ignorant of which are the followers of Wahhabiyya sect, are dealt with. In the practical aspect of monotheism, worshipping the One Allah and avoiding obedience of things other than Him are stressed. Worshipping the One Allah results from a true mind and complete knowledge of Allah and polytheism is a consequence of mental polytheism and wrong beliefs. In fact avoidance of worshipping beings other than Allah is avoidance of cheap opinions that cause this kind of worship.

The practical aspect of belief in Allah’s Oneness is requested from the people by the divine books and prophets. Since practical polytheism, like verbal polytheism, is the most obvious sign of disbelief it is an important aspect of the prophets’ invitation. Therefore practical monotheism is very effective in human life, in virtualization of his human nature, and in rescuing him from slavery and imperial powers.

The prophets were determined to purify human societies from polytheism and grant freedom and greatness to people. And the reason why the Pharaohs and tyrant rulers opposed monotheism was that its practical aspect was dangerous for their tyranny. Another reason for the prophets’ invitation to monotheism was that polytheism of some cheap people had resulted in their despotism, as the Holy Qur’an states:

إِنَّهُمْ کَانُوا إِذَا قِیلَ لَهُمْ لا إِلَهَ إِلاَّ اللَّهُ یَسْتَکْبِرُونَ.

Surely they used to behave proudly when it was said to them: There is

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no god but Allah. (37:35)

This phrase was considered a threat for the oppressors in oppressing other people, dominating them, and depriving them from their rights; because confessing to Allah’s Oneness abolished obligatory obedience to them, their orders and concessions.(1)

Thus belief in Allah’s Oneness, Uniqueness and the sameness of His Essence with His Attributes, is the perfect monotheism. Monotheism is belief in the Oneness of the Lord Who is the Ruler of everything, in Whose hands lies life, death, creation, alteration, hidden and apparent aspects of everything. In other words, it is the belief in the Lord to Whom people are invited by the Prophets and Imams and Whose rules should be obeyed. And it is denying any tyrant and oppressor ruler. So one who confesses that there is no diety save Allah, and that none holds any influence in this universe save Allah, and there is neither might nor power except with Allah is a real believer.

Amir al-Mu’minin, ‘Ali (as), who conceived the reality of things, has offered the prerequisite for knowing Allah and worshipping Him in various sermons of his Nahj al-Balaghah:

أَوَّلُ الدِّینِ مَعْرِفَتُهُ، وَکَمَالُ مَعْرِفَتِهِ التَّصْدیقُ بِهِ، وَکَمَالُ التَّصْدِیقِ بِهِ تَوْحِیدُهُ، وَکَمَالُ تَوْحِیدِهِ الاِْخْلاصُ لَهُ، وَکَمَالُ الاِْخْلاصِ لَهُ نَفْیُ الصِّفَاتِ عَنْهُ، لِشَهَادَهِ کُلِّ صِفَه أَنَّها غَیْرُ المَوْصُوفِ، وَشَهَادَهِ کُلِّ مَوْصُوف أَنَّهُ غَیْرُ الصِّفَهِ، فَمَنْ وَصَفَ اللهَ سُبْحَانَهُ فَقَدْ قَرَنَهُ، وَمَنْ قَرَنَهُ فَقَدْ ثَنَّاهُ،وَمَنْ ثَنَّاهُ فَقَد جَزَّأَهُ، وَمَنْ جَزَّأَهُ فَقَدْ جَهِلَهُ، [وَمَنْ جَهِلَهُ فَقَدْ أشَارَ إِلَیْهِ، ]وَمَنْ أشَارَ إِلَیْهِ فَقَدْ حَدَّهُ، وَمَنْ حَدَّهُ فَقَدْ عَدَّهُ، وَمَنْ قَالَ: «فِیمَ» فَقَدْ

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1- Ilahiyat dar Nahj Al-Balagha: 129.

ضَمَّنَهُ، وَمَنْ قَالَ: «عَلاَمَ؟» فَقَدْ أَخْلَی مِنُهُ. کائِنٌ لاَ عَنْ حَدَث، مَوْجُودٌ لاَ عَنْ عَدَم، مَعَ کُلِّ شَیْء لاَ بِمُقَارَنَه، وَغَیْرُ کُلِّ شیء لا بِمُزَایَلَه، فَاعِلٌ لا بِمَعْنَی الْحَرَکَاتِ وَالاْلهِ، بَصِیرٌ إذْ لاَ مَنْظُورَ إلَیْهِ مِنْ خَلْقِهِ، مُتَوَحِّدٌ إذْ لاَ سَکَنَ یَسْتَأْنِسُ بهِ وَلاَ یَسْتوْحِشُ لِفَقْدِهِ.

The beginning of religion is knowing Him, the perfection of this knowledge is belief in Allah, the final point of this belief is believing in His Oneness, and the purpose of this belief is sincerity toward Him, and the end point of this sincerity is denying false features attributed to Him, since every attribute is different from what it describes and vice versa. So anyone who describes Allah with an attribute has related Him to something, and if one relates Allah to something he has considered Allah as two, and if he considers Allah as two has considered Him as having aspects. If one considers Allah as having aspects, he has not understood His reality, and anyone who has not understood Allah’s reality has considered a reference point for Him, and by doing so he has considered Allah limited, so he has considered Allah as countable. If one asks: ‘What is Allah located in?’ he has considered Him along with something else. And one who asks: ‘What is Allah over?’ has considered that thing separate from and independent of Allah.

He is eternal; nothing has existed before Him and He has experienced no nonexistence. He is with everything without being related to it and He is

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different from everything without being separate from it. He is the Creator of beings without having a movement and without needing any means. He is Seeing without needing a view of His creatures. He is One, because He has never had a match to befriend it and fear without it.(1)

Also in another sermon Imam ‘Ali (as) states:

الْحَمْدُ لله الَّذِی لاَ تُدْرِکُهُ الشَّوَاهِدُ، وَلاَ تَحْوِیهِ الْمَشَاهِدُ، وَلاَ تَرَاهُ النَّوَاظِرُ، وَلاَ تَحْجُبُهُ السَّوَاتِرُ، الدَّالِّ عَلَی قِدَمِهِ بِحُدُوثِ خَلْقِهِ، وَبِحُدُوثِ خَلْقِهِ عَلَی وجُودِهِ، وَبِاشْتِبَاهِهِمْ عَلَی أَنْ لاَ شَبَهَ لَهُ، الَّذِی صَدَقَ فِی مِیعَادِهِ، وَارْتَفَعَ عَنْ ظُلْمِ عِبَادِه، وَقَامَ بِالْقِسطِ فِی خَلْقِهِ، وَعَدَلَ عَلَیْهِمْ فِی حُکْمِهِ، مُسْتَشْهِدٌ بِحُدُوثِ الاَْشْیَاءِ عَلَی أَزَلِیَّتِهِ، وَبِمَا وَسَمَهَا بِهِ مِنَ الْعَجْزِ عَلَی قُدْرَتِهِ، وَبِمَا اضْطَرَّهَا إِلَیْهِ مِنَ الْفَنَاءِ عَلَی دَوَامِهِ، وَاحِدٌ لاَ بِعَدَد، وَدَائِمٌ لاَ بِأَمَد، وَقَائِمٌ لاَ بَعَمَد، تَتَلَقَّاهُ الاَْذْهَانُ لاَ بِمُشَاعَرَه، وَتَشْهَدُ لَهُ الْمَرَائِی لاَ بِمُحَاضَرَه، لَمْ تُحِطْ بِهِ الاَْوْهَامُ، بَلْ تَجَلَّی لَهَا بِهَا، وَبِهَا امْتَنَعَ مِنهَا، وَإِلَیْهَا حَاکَمَهَا، لَیْسَ بِذِی کِبَر امْتَدَّتْ بِهِ النِّهَایَاتُ فَکَبَّرَتْهُ تَجْسِیماً، وَلاَ بِذِی عِظَم تَنَاهَتْ بِهِ الْغَایَاتُ فَعَظَّمَتْهُ تَجْسِیداً بَلْ کَبُرَ شَأْناً، وَعَظُمَ سُلْطَاناً.

Praise be to Allah. He is such that senses cannot perceive Him, place cannot contain Him, eyes cannot see Him and veils cannot cover Him. He proves His eternity by the coming into existence of His creation, and (also) by originating His creation (He proves) His existence, and by their (mutual) similarity He proves that there is nothing similar to Him. He is true in His promise. He is too high to be unjust to His creatures. He

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1- Nahj Al-Balagha: sermon 1, the present author’s translation.

stands by equity among His creation and practices justice over them in His commands. He provides evidence through the creation of things of His being from ever, through their marks of incapability of His power, and through their powerlessness against death of His eternity.

He is One, but not by counting. He is everlasting without, any limit. He is existent without any support. Minds admit of Him without (any activity of the) senses. Things which can be seen stand witness to Him without confronting Him. Imagination cannot encompass Him. He manifests Himself to the imagination with his help for the imagination, and refuses to be imagined by the imagination. He has made imagination the arbiter (in this matter). He is not big in the sense that volume is vast and so His body is also big. Nor is He great in the sense that His limits should extend to the utmost and so His frame be extensive. But He is big in position and great in authority.(1)

One who receives the belief in Allah’s Oneness from the Qur’an, the prophets, the Imams and other sincere believers, performs the obligatory deeds, avoids wrongdoing, and denies any deity but Allah, is a real monotheist and hence would be rescued, and granted great reward and sustenance from Allah. The Prophet of Islam (S) has said:

خَیْرُ العِبَادَهِ قَوْلُ لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ اللهُ.

The best worship is confessing to Allah’s Oneness (saying there is no god but Allah).(2)

مَنْ مَاتَ وَلاَ یُشْرِکُ باللهِ شَیْئاً، أحْسَنَ أوْ أسَاءَ، دَخَلَ الجَنَّهَ.

One

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1- Ibid, sermon 185.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/506, Bab Tasbih, tradition 5; Tawhid Saduq: 18, Bab Thawab Al-Muwahhidin, tradition 2.

who dies while he has not considered a deity beside Allah would enter the Paradise, whether he has done good or bad deeds.(1)

Imam al-Baqir (as) stated:

مَا مِنْ شَیْءٍ أعْظَمُ ثَواباً مِنْ شَهَادَهِ أنْ لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ اللهُ، لأنَّ اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ لاَ یَعْدِلُهُ شَیْءٌ وَلا یَشْرَکُهُ فِی الأمْرِ أحَدٌ.

No deed will be rewarded more than confessing to Allah’s Oneness, because nothing equals the Almighty and no one is His counterpart.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

إنَّ اللهَ تَبَارَکَ وَتَعَالَی حَرَّمَ أجْسَادَ المُوَحِّدِینَ عَلَی النَّارِ.

Surely the Almighty has denied Fire on the believers’ bodies.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as) also stated:

قَوْلُ لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ اللهُ ثَمَنُ الجَنَّهِ.

The cost of Paradise is the sincere uttering of ‘There is no deity but Allah’.(4)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

إنَّ لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ اللهُ کَلِمَهٌ عَظِیمَهٌ کَرِیمَهٌ عَلَی اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ، مَنْ قَالَهَا مُخْلِصاً اسْتَوْجَبَ الجَنَّهَ، وَمَنْ قَالَهَا کَاذِباً عَصَمَتْ مَالَهُ وَدَمَهُ وَکَانَ مَصِیرُهُ إلَی النَّارِ.

The phrase ‘there is no god but Allah’ is a worthy one before Allah. One who confesses to it sincerely is deserved to go to Paradise, and one who confesses to it untruly is safe in this world, but his place is in the Fire in the Hereafter.(5)

He is also quoted as saying:

وَالَّذِی بَعَثَنِی بِالْحَقِّ بَشِیراً؛ لاَ یُعَذِّبُ اللهُ بِالنَّارِ مُوَحِّداً أبَداً.

By the One Who truly sent me for giving good tidings that Allah would never chastise a monotheist by the Fire.(6)

O Merciful Allah! No one knows You as the chastiser of me after my sincere confessing to Your Oneness, my recognition of Your Greatness, my

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1- Tawhid Saduq: 19, Bab Thawab Al-Muwahhidin wa Al-’Arifin, tradition 5.
2- Ibid, tradition 3.
3- Tawhid Saduq: 20, Bab Thawab Al-Muwahhidin, tradition 7.
4- Tawhid Saduq: 21; Wasa’il Al-Shi’a: 7/ 210, Bab 44, tradition 9140.
5- Tawhid Saduq: 23, Bab Thawab Al-Muwahhidin, tradition 18.
6- Tawhid Saduq: 29, Bab Thawab Al-Muwahhidin, tradition 31.

mentioning Your remembrance, my adherence to Your love, and my humble supplication before You.

هَیْهاتَ! أَنْتَ أَکْرَمُ مِنْ أَنْ تُضَیِّعَ مَنْ رَبَّیْتَهُ أَوْ تُبْعِدَ مَنْ أَدْنَیْتَهُ أَوْ تُشَرِّدَ مَنْ اوَیْتَهُ أَوْ تُسَلِّمَ إِلَی الْبَلاءِ مَنْ کَفَیْتَهُ وَرَحِمْتَهُ

Far be it from You! You are more generous than that; You should torture him whom You have nurtured; banish him whom You have brought up; drive away him whom You have given an abode; or submit to tribulation him whom You have spared and shown mercy.

The Divinity Manifestation

From the very beginning of creating human until his death time, the Almighty puts him under two kinds of training; material and spiritual training.

The material training is fulfilled by a wide variety of blessings. Human uses these blessings either by his own will, such as the blessings of eating, dinking, breathing, etc. or unintentionally by Allah’s will, such as the mechanisms for absorbing the chemicals in human body and providing all the body organs with these necessary materials.

This is briefly mentioned in Yunus chapter of the holy Qur’an:

قُلْ: مَنْ یَرْزُقُکُمْ مِنْ السَّمَاءِ وَالأَرْضِ، أَمَّنْ یَمْلِکُ السَّمْعَ وَالأَبْصَارَ، وَمَنْ یُخْرِجُ الْحَیَّ مِنْ الْمَیِّتِ وَیُخْرِجُ الْمَیِّتَ مِنْ الْحَیِّ، وَمَنْ یُدَبِّرُ الأَمْرَ؟ فَسَیَقُولُونَ اللَّهُ. فَقُلْ: أَفَلا تَتَّقُونَ؟

Say Who gives you sustenance from the heaven and the earth? Or Who controls the hearing and the sight? And Who brings forth the living from the dead, and brings forth the dead from the living? And Who regulates the affairs? Then they will say: Allah. Say then: Will you not then guard against evil? (10:31)

We

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are unable to analyze even a single organ of the body, understand all its details, and appreciate it as a blessing, let alone all the body organs and their order and interrelationships, as well as their relations to outer factors.

To be able to imagine what is going on in the wonderful system of human body, we mention only ‘the eye’ in brief. Human ‘eye’ is composed of these parts: 1. eye socket, 2. eyeball, 3. external eye muscles, 4. eyelid, 5. the conjunctiva, 6. tear system.

Eye socket is a pyramidal hole whose walls consist of the forehead bone, the upper jaw, the cheek bone, palatal bone, and tear ball.

Eyeball occupies one fifth of the whole eyehole space. The rest of the eyehole is filled with fat, nerves, vessels, muscles, and the tear ball.

Eye muscles are four straight muscles, namely the upper, lower, inner, and outer muscles, as well as two oblique ones; the upper and the lower. The middle brain core and the brain bridge control eye movements.

The eyelid and eyelashes have the duty of cleaning and closing the eye in case of sleep and danger.

The conjunctiva is a thin curtain that protects the eyelids.

The tear system is shaped like an almond which is related to the nasal cavity by a bone and keeps the eye constantly clean, bright, and wet.

The eyeball itself is composed of tree curtains; the sclerotic coat, the choroids coat, and the iris of the eye.

The sclerotic coat is the whiteness of the eyeball, is in

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fact an external covering for protecting the eyeball, and is attached to cornea in its front part.

The choroids coat is the middle curtain, part of which makes the eyelashes, and functions as the regulator of eye lens for seeing various distances.

The iris is the colored part of the eye. The hole in its center is called pupil and has the responsibility of regulating the light via tightening and loosening muscles. The eye lens fractures the light to focus the pictures on the retina, which is the light-receiver organ.

Various orders reach from the nervous cells to body organs, including the eye. For instance a muscle is ordered to be expanded and simultaneously the eyes are ordered to be closed and the glands are ordered to produce sweat!

Keeping in mind the number of nerve cells in the whole body, that is around fifteen billion, and the complexity of this system one should accept professor Steinbach’s idea, that is, an electronic expert needs forty thousand years to make such a sophisticated system!

The Allah ‘Who brought fourth the living from the death’ created human from a sperm, the sperm from the soil, the animal from the egg, and the plant from the seed. He then created the sperm from the living human, who has digested the food, the egg from the living bird, and the seed from the living plant.

Who is the One Who controls this wonderful system of the world? The mind and nature of all humans. Answer: Allah. So tell them: Won’t

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you fear disbelief and denying His orders?

The spiritual training is fulfilled via human thinking power, human nature, conscience, prophethood, Imamate, divine books, and especially Qur’an. The true Lord has given the freedom to use these blessings so that his efforts would be valued more and based to this freedom to choose, and deserve mercy, forgiveness, and Paradise.

Amir al-Mu’minin (as), in this part, tells Allah: it is very far from You to spoil the one who have accepted Your divinity and training, via Your spiritual blessings. It is very far from You to torture the one who You have have brought to Your nearness and mercy, or to drive away the one who You have given refuge, or chastise the one who You have spared.

You are so Merciful and so Generous that You have addressed the sinful human: “You called me and I answered you, you asked Me and I granted you, you opposed Me but I respited, you left Me but I watched you, you disobeyed My orders but I concealed your sins; if you return to me I would accept you, and if you went away from Me, I wait for your return to Me. I am the most Generous of the generous, the most Forgiver of the forgivers, and the most Merciful of the merciful.”(1)

Moses and Korah

Allamiyi Majlisi narrates from ‘Ali Ibn Ibrahim Qumi: When Korah denied Moses and his prophethood, refusing to pay zakat of his wealth and accusing Moses, the latter complained to Allah about him. The Almighty

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1- Tafsir Kashf Al-Asrar: 3/ 374.

told Moses: “I ordered the heavens and the earth to obey you; give them whatever order you want!”

So Moses went to Korah’s house while he had his servants close all the doors to Moses. Reaching Korah’s palace and seeing all the doors closed, Moses pointed to the doors, so all of them opened. When Korah saw Moses, he knew that Moses has come with Allah’s chastisement. And he said: “O Moses! I ask you, for our tie of kinship, to have mercy on me.” Moses (as) told him: “O son of Lavi! Don’t talk to me because it is of no use for you.” Then Moses addressed the earth: “Take Korah!” Therefore the palace and everything in it was descended into the earth. Even at that time Korah wept and requested Moses on account of their kinship. But Moses replied again: “Do not talk to me!” even though Korah deplored, Moses did not accept, because he was angry of Korah’s indecent deeds. After Korah’s death, Moses went to his worship place where he was addressed by Allah: “O Moses! Korah and his people requested you, but you did not heed them. By My Glory, if he had deplored to Me, I would had accepted him, but since he called you, I left him to you!”

The Youth and His Mother

It is written in Tafsir Nayshaburi that in Prophet Muhammad’s time a young man was close to his death. The Prophet (S) was asked to visit the sick young man. The Prophet of Islam came to

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the young man while he was unable to utter his testimonies (i.e Allah’s Oneness and Muhammad’s prophethood)! The Prophet (S) asked his acquaintances: “Has he been forgetful about prayer?” And he was answered in negative. He asked again: “Has he refused to pay zakat?” The people around the sick youngster denied it too. The Prophet questioned them: “Has his father cursed him?” And they answered negatively. The Prophet asked: “Has is mother cursed him?” “Yes,” the people replied. So the Prophet (S) called his mother and asked her to forgive his son. The mother refused to do so, saying: “How can I forgive him while he has beaten me in the face and hurt one of my eyes?” Then the Messenger of Allah (S) ordered to bring fire. The sick man’s mother asked the reason for bringing fire. The Prophet (S) replied: “I want to burn him for the sin he has committed.” Therefore the mother said: “I don’t want him to be burnt, because I bore him for nine months in my womb, breastfed him for two years, trained and lived with him for many years, so I forgive him to be saved from being burnt.”

While a mother who is just one’s conventional trainer does not wish her disobedient child to be burnt, how would Allah, Who is human’s True Trainer who has developed him from poorness to excellence, torture His disobedient, sinful, ignorant servant in the Fire? “Far be it from You! You are more generous than that

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You should torture him whom You have nurtured.”

Right of Hospitality

It is narrated that Yazid Ibn Muhallab had lent some money to Waki’, a noble man of Khurasan. He sent an envoy to receive that sum of money from Waki’s representative. The envoy asked money from that representative and put him under pressure for the payment.

One day, later on, the envoy of Yazid took the representative of Waki’ to Yazid so that he ask for the respite of the payment. At the same time the food table was set. Yazid’s representative asked Waki’s envoy to leave together for later. But he refused to do so and began eating food. Afterwards, he asked Yazid for a respite for the payment again. So Yazid told his representative: “Do not ask Waki’s envoy for the lent money anymore and don’t put him under pressure, because he has eaten our food now and has right of hospitality.”

Certainly, the Merciful Allah would not torture with Fire a servant who has the right of hospitality to his Lord.

Right of the Guest on His Host

The historians have narrated that three hundred captives were brought to Ma’an Ibn Za’idah, a great commander of war. Ma’an ordered to kill all of them. A captive boy who had not reached puberty yet said: “O commander! By Allah do not kill us before we drink water!” Ma’an said: “Let all of them drink water!” When they all drank water, the young man told the commander: “Now all of us are your guests and greeting the guest is a duty of

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the noble ones.” So Ma’an said: “You are right.” Then he ordered to free all of those captives.

For sure, as the Commander of the Believers, ‘Ali (as), has informed us it is far away from the Beneficent Allah to chastise a servant who has always been a guest of His bountiful blessings.

وَلَیْتَ شِعْری یا سَیِّدی وَإِلهی وَمَوْلایَ أَتُسَلِّطُ النّارَ عَلی وُجُوه خَرَّتْ لِعَظَمَتِکَ ساجِدَهً، وَعَلی أَلْسُن نَطَقَتْ بِتَوْحیدِکَ صادِقَهً، وَبِشُکْرِکَ مادِحَهً، وَعَلی قُلُوب اعْتَرَفَتْ بِإِلهِیَّتِکَ مُحَقِّقَهً، وَعَلی ضَمائِرَ حَوَتْ مِنَ الْعِلْمِ بِکَ حَتّی صارَتْ خاشِعَهً، وَعَلی جَوارِحَ سَعَتْ إِلی أَوْطانِ تَعَبُّدِکَ طائِعَهً وَأَشارَتْ بِاسْتِغْفارِکَ مُذْعِنَهً، ما هکَذَا الظَّنُّ بِکَ وَلا اُخْبِرْنا بِفَضْلِکَ عَنْکَ یا کَریمُ یا رَبِّ

Would that I knew, my Master, my Allah and my protector, whether You will give the Fire dominion over faces fallen down prostrate before Your Greatness; tongues voicing sincerely the profession of Your Oneness and giving thanks to You in praise; hearts acknowledging Your Divinity through verification; minds encompassing knowledge of You until they have become humble; and limbs speeding to the places of Your worship in obedience and entreating Your forgiveness in submission. No such opinion is held of You! Nor has such been reported- thanks to Your Bounty- concerning You, O Allah! -Generous!

Comprehensive Worship

The most comprehensive type of worship is considered prayer. The one, who performs prayer, shows his humility to his Lord, confesses to His Oneness, and appreciates Him, via his prayer. The prayer-performer’s body organs that are attached to his conscious will eagerly hurry to worship places, such as the mosques

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and shrines.

Moreover, the knowledgeable servants of Allah who have deeply known their Lord, and His creation motives, are very humble before Him. They confess to His Oneness in public and in solitude and are thankful to His numerous blessings. They rush to the worship places with their enthusiastic organs for gaining His satisfaction.

How can these servants hold a bad opinion of You? And why shouldn’t they be optimistic of Your forgiveness? Which prophet and which heavenly book has informed the pious servants that they would be tortured and their faces, tongues, hearts, and lambs be burnt in Fire?

In fact the prophets, Imams, and heavenly books have notified the believers that the pious believers, who have committed virtues, would not be tortured in Fire, away from their Lord, even if they have had some wrongdoings, because of their repentance and regretfulness.

Some traditions about the most comprehensive worship that is prayer are narrated here, hoping that Allah help us in completing this great worship, that hinders chastisement from us.

The Messenger of Allah states in traditions about prayer:

الصَّلاَهُ مِنْ شَرَائِعِ الدِّینِ، وَفِیهَا مَرْضَاهُ الرَّبِّ عَزَِّ وَجَلَّ، وَهِیَ مِنْهَاجُ الأنْبِیَاءِ.

Prayer is among the religious rules. It brings Allah’s satisfaction and is the Prophets’ path.(1)

جَعَلَ اللهُ جَلَّ ثَنَاؤهُ قُرَّهَ عَیْنِی فِی الصَّلاَهِ وَحَبَّبَ إلَیَّ الصَّلاَهَ کَمَا حَبَّبَ إلَی الجَائِعِ الطَّعَامَ، وَإلَی الظَّمْآنِ المَاءَ، وَإنَّ الجَائِعَ إذَا أکَلَ شَبِعَ، وَإنَّ الظَّمْآنَ إذَا شَرِبَ رُوِیَ، وَأنَا لاَ أشْبَعُ مِنَ الصَّلاَهِ.

The Praiseworthy Allah has set prayer the light of my eye and happiness of my heart and has

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1- Khisal: 2/522, tradition 11; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/3092, Al-Salat, tradition 10528.

made it deer to me, as food is deer to a hungry person and water is deer to a thirsty one. The hungry becomes full of the food and the thirsty becomes full of the water, while I never get completely full of prayer.(1)

إذَا قُمْتَ إلَی الصَّلاَهِ وَتَوَجَّهْتَ وَقَرَأتَ أُمَّ الکِتَابِ وَمَا تَیَسَّرَ مِنَ السُّوَرِ ثُمَّ رَکَعْتَ فَأتْمَمَتَ رُکُوعَهَا وَسُجُودَهَا وَتَشَهَّدْتَ وَسَلَّمْتَ، غُفِرَ لَکَ کُلُّ ذَنْبٍ فِیمَا بَیْنَکَ وَبَیْنَ الصَّلاَهِ الَّتِی قَدَّمْتَهَا إلَی الصَّلاَهِ المُؤَخَّرَهِ.

When you stand up for prayer toward qibla, and recite the first Qur’anic chapter (Surat al-Fatihah) and any other Qur’anic chapter you could, then performed roku’ and sajda, followed by tashahhud and salam, all your sins before your prayer and until your next prayer would be forgiven.(2)

Amir al-Mu’minin, Imam ‘Ali (as), have said about prayer:

الصَّلاَهُ تَسْتَنْزِلُ الرَّحْمَهَ.

Prayer descends blessings.(3)

الصَّلاهُ قُربانُ کُلِّ تَقِیٍّ.

Prayer makes every pious servant close to Allah.(4)

أوصِیکُمْ بِالصَّلاَهِ وَحِفْظِهَا، فَإنَّهَا خَیْرُ العَمَلِ، وَهِیَ عَمُودُ دِینِکُمْ.

I recommend you perform prayer and keep on it, because it is the best deed and the base of your religion.(5)

إنَّ الإنْسَانَ إذَا کَانَ فِی الصَّلاَهِ فَإنَّ جَسَدَهُ وَثِیَابَهُ وَکُلَّ شَیْءٍ حَوْلَهُ یُسَبِّحُ.

When one is performing prayer, his body, clothes, and everything around him are worshipping!(6)

یَا کُمَیْلُ! لَیْسَ الشَّأنُ أنْ تُصَلِّیَ وَتَصُومَ وَتَتَصَدَّقَ، إنَّمَا الشَّأنُ أنْ تَکُونَ الصَّلاَهَ فَعَلْتَ بِقَلْبٍ نَقِیٍّ وَعَمَلٍ عِنْدَ اللهِ مَرْضِیٍّ وَخُشُوعٍ سَوِیٍّ.

O Kumayl! You should not merely perform prayer, fast, and pay charity; rather you should perform prayer with a purified and humble heart to satisfy Allah.(7)

Besides the Holy Qur’an, the reliable Shi’a tradition sources

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1- Makarim al-Akhlaq: 461, Al-Fasl Al-Khamis; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3092, Al-Salat, tradition 10535.
2- Amali Saduq: 549, tradition 22; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3096, Al-Salat, tradition 10556.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 175, tradition 3341; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3092, Al-Salat, tradition 10532.
4- Khisal: 2/620; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3094, Al-Salat, tradition 10537.
5- Amali Tusi: 522, tradition 1157; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3094, Al-Salat, tradition 10543.
6- Ilal Al-Sharayi’: 2/336, Bab 33, tradition 2; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3104, Al-Salat, tradition 10585.
7- Tuhaf al-’Uqul: 174, Wasiyya Li Kumayl Ibn Ziyad; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3106, Al-Salat, tradition 10592.

like “Kutub Arba’a”, “Wasa’ilaAl-Shi’ah”, etc. are the best and most complete sources about the worldly and heavenly effects of performing prayer.

Having Good idea about Allah

A human who is a believer, righteous, and virtuous servant and is going to seek Allah’s path during his lifetime should have good idea about Allah’s Mercy, Blessings, and Forgiveness. In other words, while he is in fear of the Hereafter and Allah’s chastisement, he should be hopeful of His Benevolent treatment at death time, in the purgatory, and especially on the Last Day, and His Forgiveness of the sins. Everyone should be hopeful that Allah would accept his efforts, bringing him to the Paradise among His friends.

The infallible Imams (as) have considered having a good idea about Allah as a result of one’s positive effort. In their traditions: Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

حُسْنُ الظَّنِّ أنْ تُخْلِصَ العَمَلَ وَتَرْجُوَ مِنْ اللهِ أنْ یَعْفُوَ عَنِ الزَّلَلِ.

Having good idea about Allah is attempting sincerely for Allah and hoping for Allah’s forgiveness of your sins.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

حُسْنُ الظَّنِّ بِاللهِ أنْ لاَ تَرْجُو إلاّ اللهَ وَلاَ تَخَافَ إلاّ ذَنْبَکَ.

Having good idea about Allah is to hope in no one but Allah, and to fear nothing but your sins.(2)

The Messenger of Allah (S) said about goodwill:

وَاللهِ الَّذِی لاَ إلَهَ إلاّ هُوَ، لاَ یَحْسُنُ ظَنُّ عَبْدٍ مُؤمِنٍ بِاللهِ إلاّ کَانَ اللهُ عِنْدَ ظَنِّ عَبْدِهِ المُؤْمِنِ، لأنَّ اللهَ کَرِیمٌ بِیَدِهِ الخَیْرَاتُ، یَسْتَحْیی أنْ یَکُونَ عَبْدُهُ المُؤمِنُ قَدْ أحْسَنَ بِهِ الظَّنَّ وَالرَّجَاءَ ثُمَّ یُخْلِفُ ظَنَّهُ وَرَجَاءَهُ، فَأحْسِنُوا بِاللهِ الظَّنَّ وَارْغَبُوا إلَیْهِ.

I swear by God who has no partners

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 83, tradition 1327; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3402, Al-Zan, tradition 11590.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/72, Bab Husn Al-Zan, tradition 4; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3402, Al-Zan, tradition 11589.

that there are no believers who have a good opinion about God and receive anything less than they expect from Him. This is so since God is Benevolent and has authority over all that is good, and is ashamed of one of his servants having a good opinion about Him and He acting otherwise. Therefore have a good opinion about God and be inclined to Him.(1)

لاَ یَمُوتَنَّ أحَدُکُمْ إلاّ وَهُوَ یُحْسِنُ الظَّنَّ بِاللهِ، فَإنَّ حُسْنَ الظَّنِّ بِاللهِ ثَمَنُ الجَنَّهِ.

Do not die and depart from this world until you have formed a good opinion about God, since this is the price for Heaven.(2)

حُسْنُ الظَّنِّ بِاللهِ مِنْ عِبَادَهِ اللهِ.

Forming good opinion about Allah is a kind of worshipping Him.(3)

وَأَنْتَ تَعْلَمُ ضَعْفی عَنْ قَلیل مِنْ بَلاءِ الدُّنْیا وَعُقُوباتِها وَما یَجْری فیها مِنَ الْمَکارِهِ عَلی أَهْلِها، عَلی أَنَّ ذلِکَ بَلاءٌ وَمَکْرُوهٌ قَلیلٌ مَکْثُهُ، یَسیرٌ بَقاؤُهُ، قَصیرٌ مُدَّتُهُ فَکَیْفَ احْتِمالی لِبَلاءِ الاْخِرَهِ وَجَلیلِ وُقُوعِ الْمَکارِهِ فیها وَهُوَ بَلاءٌ تَطُولُ مُدَّتُهُ وَیَدُومُ مَقامُهُ وَلا یُخَفَّفُ عَنْ أَهْلِهِ لإَِنَّهُ لا یَکُونُ إلاّ عَنْ غَضَبِکَ وَاْنتِقامِکَ وَسَخَطِکَ، وَهذا ما لا تَقُومُ لَهُ السَّماواتُ وَالاَْرْضُ یا سَیِّدِی فَکَیْفَ لی وَأَنَا عَبْدُکَ الضَّعیفُ الذَّلیلُ الْحَقیرُ الْمِسْکینُ الْمُسْتَکینُ

And You know my weakness before a little of this world’s tribulations and punishments and before those ordeals which befall its dwellers, even though it is a tribulation and ordeal whose stay is short, whose subsistence is but little and whose period is but fleeting. So how can I endure the tribulation of the next world and the real ordeals that occur within it?

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/71, Bab Husn Al-Zan, tradition 2; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3400, Al-Zan, tradition 11581.
2- Amali Tusi: 379, tradition 814; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3400, Al-Zan, tradition 11582.
3- Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/3400, Al-Zan, tradition 11584.

For it is a tribulation whose period is long; whose station endures, and whose sufferers are given no respite, since it only occurs as a result of Your Wrath, Your Vengeance, and Your Anger. And these cannot be withstood by the heavens and the earth. My Master, so what about me? For I am Your weak, lowly, base, wretched and miserable slave.

Tribulation of this world and that of the Hereafter

The tribulation of this world, as stated by Amir al-Mu’minin (as), is different from the tribulation of the Hereafter in several ways.

Firstly, hardship of whis world such as storm, earthquake, flood, famine, expensiveness of goods, loneliness, and the diseases that bothers human has a short stay, and a fleeting period. But human tribulations in the Last Day have a long stay and enduring station.

Second, some worldly tribulations are a form of divine trials. If human is patient in these difficulties and maintains his belief, he will be greatly rewarded and is subjected to Allah’s satisfaction. By the same token, the prophets were patient with the torturing of their people. Also some of Allah’s friends like Asiyah, the Pharaoh’s wife, and Habib al-Najjar had tribulations in His way and by His will; however, the tribulation of the Last Day is merely the chastisement of human sins and disobediences in this world.

The Holy Qur’an considers Allah’s accompanying human a result of obeying Him, the Prophet (S), and being patient with committing sins.

وَأَطِیعُوا اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ وَلا تَنَازَعُوا فَتَفْشَلُوا وَتَذْهَبَ رِیحُکُمْ وَاصْبِرُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَ الصَّابِرِینَ.

And obey Allah and His Messenger and do

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not quarrel for then you will be weak in heart and your power will depart, and be patient; surely Allah is with the patient. (8:46)

The Holy Qur’an has given good tidings to the believers and has considered them subject to Allah’s Mercy.

وَلا تَقُولُوا لِمَنْ یُقْتَلُ فِی سَبِیلِ اللَّهِ أَمْوَاتٌ، بَلْ أَحْیَاءٌ وَلَکِنْ لا تَشْعُرُونَ. وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّکُمْ بِشَیْءٍ مِنْ الْخَوْفِ وَالْجُوعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِنْ الأَمْوَالِ وَالأَنفُسِ وَالثَّمَرَاتِ، وَبَشِّرْ الصَّابِرِینَ. الَّذِینَ إِذَا أَصَابَتْهُمْ مُصِیبَهٌ قَالُوا إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَیْهِ رَاجِعُونَ.

And do not speak of those who are slain in Allah’s way as dead; nay, they are alive, but you do not perceive. And We will certainly try you with something of fear and hunger and loss of property and lives and fruits; and give good news to the patient, Who, when a misfortune befalls them, say: Surely we are Allah’s and to Him we shall surely return. (2:154-156)

The Messenger of Allah (S) has stated:

الصَّبْرُ ثَلاَثَهٌ: صَبْرٌ عِنْدَ المُصِیبَهِ، وَصَبْرٌ عَلَی الطَّاعَهِ، وَصَبْرٌ عَنِ المَعْصِیَهِ.

There are three kinds of patience; patience with calamities, patience with obedience, and patience with wrongdoing.(1)

The Messenger of Allah (S), in explaining “the patient”, states:

…اَلَّذِینَ یَصْبِرُونَ عَلَی طَاعَهِ اللهِ، وَاجْتَنَبوا مَعْصِیَتَهُ، وَالَّذِینَ کَسَبوا طَیِّباً، وَأنْفَقُوا قَصْداً، وَقَدَّمُوا فَضْلاً فَأفْلَحُوا وَأنْجَحُوا.

The patient are those who are patient with disobedience of Allah, obtain their sustenance lawfully, give their wealth away moderately, and sending their additional wealth for their Hereafter; so they are delivered.(2)

The tribulation of the Hereafter, on the other hand, will not be a trial; rather it is the chastisement of worldly

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 91, Bab Al-Sabr, tradition 15.
2- Makarim al-Akhlaq: 446, Al-Fasl Al-Rabi’ fi Maw’izati Rasul Allah; Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 11/ 261, Bab Wujub Al-Sabr, tradition 12940.

deeds and no one can be patient with it. And there would be no reward for the patience then, even if someone managed to resist it.

Purgatory and Hereafter Punishments

Some of the Qur’anic verses, especially those in the last three parts of it, as well as some traditions mention various punishments of the Purgatory and the Hereafter.

Amir al-Mu’minin, Imam ‘Ali (as), says about Allah’s foes: “… and for Allah’s enemy, an angel is descended who is the worst creature of Allah in terms of behavior, appearance, and odor. So the angel says: “I give you tidings of boiling water to drink and entering the Hell!” Allah’s enemy knows his washer and the bearers of his body and asks them, for Allah’s sake, not to take him toward the grave. When he is put inside the grave, two questioning angels come and open his shroud, and then ask him: “Who is your Lord? What is your religion? And who is your prophet?” Allah’s enemy does not know the answer. The two angels say: “You didn’t know the answer so you cannot enter the Paradise.” Then he is beaten in the head with a stick, which is very frightening for any creature Allah has created, and all the beings hear its sound. So a door of the Fire is opened to him and he is told: “Rest in the worst state!” His grave becomes so tight for him that his brain comes out through his nails and flesh. Allah places some snakes, scorpions, and savages

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over him which sting him until his resurrection from the grave.”(1)

Shaykh Saduq has narrated from Imam al-Baqir (as) about the purgatory punishments:

The sinners inside the Fire cry from the intensity of the torture, like dogs and wolves; there is never a death for them; their punishment never decreases; they are always hungry and thirsty there; their eyes are weak, they are deaf and dumb and blind; their faces are black; and they are rejected, regretful, and subject to Wrath. They are not pitied for or rescued from the chastisement. They are burnt in the Fire, drink boiling water, and eating a bad-odor poisonous material. They are beaten with heavy iron hammers by wrathful strict angels who have no mercy. The sinners are put to the Fire by their faces, accompany Satan, and are fastened with chains. Their prayer is not fulfilled and their request not answered; this is the state of the resident in the Hell!(2)

‘Ali Ibn Ibrahim Qummi has narrated from Imam Sadiq (as), in his exegesis book:

One day, Gabriel, the angel of revelation, came to the Messenger of Allah (S), in a sorrowful state. The Prophet (S) said: “Why is it that I see you crying and sad?” Gabriel said: “Why shouldn’t I be so while the Hell’s manafikh have been set?” The Prophet of Islam (S) asked again: “What is manafikh of the hell?” And he was told: “By the Almighty’s order, the Fire was lit up for a thousand years until it became red. Then He

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1- Tafsir Qomi: 1/ 370, Wuluj Al-Nakirin fi Al-Qabr; Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 304, Kitab Zikr Al-Mowt wa ma ba’da; Bihar al-Anwar: 6/224, Bab 8, tradition 26.
2- Amali Saduq: 557; Al-Majlis Al-Thani wa Al-Thamanun, tradition 14; Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 360, Kitab Zikr Al-Mowt wa ma Ba’da; Bihar al-Anwar: 8/ 281, Bab 24, tradition 2.

ordered to the Fire again and it was lit up for another thousand years so it got white. Afterwards the Fire was lit up for the same period of time again until it became black. It is now a black dark substance. If a link of its seventy-dhar’(1) chain is put on the earth, it will melt from heat. And if a drop of its Zaqqum(2) is poured into the drinking water of the world, all the earth’s inhabitants will die of its bad odor.”

So the Prophet (S) and Gabriel cried. At the same time, Allah descended towards them an angel, who gave them Allah’s greeting and message: “I rescued you from committing any sins which prevents you to be subjected to such a chastisement.”(3)

Allah’s enemies are put in a narrow place, with dark paths and indefinite holes; they are eternal in its ever-lasting Fire and drink boiling water. They remain in the Hell, are beaten by Fire, and wish for death. They have no freedom. Their feet are tied to their foreheads. Their faces are dark from wrongdoing. They call out from among the Fire: “O guard! The promised threat is fulfilled. O Guard! The chains are heavy on our body and our skin is burnt from the Fire. Take us away from here so that we won’t commit sins anymore.” The Fire says: “Your freedom is so far away! It is not a day of salvage today and the paths to the outside are always closed. Go away

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1- A unit of length equal to 104 centimeters.
2- An infernal tree.
3- Tafsir Qumi: 2/81, under the verse ‘kullama aradu an yakhruju minha…’; mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 361, Kitab Zikr Al-Mowt wa ma Ba’da.

and be silent! If you are taken away, you will commit sins again.”

Meanwhile the inhabitants of Hell get hopeless of their freedom and regret their scant worship, but their regretfulness does not help and rescue them. With tied feet and hands, they fall down on their faces. Fire is above their head, beneath their feet, on their right and their left. Their food, drink, clothes, and beds are all fire.

They are among pieces of Fire, dirty clothes, and heavy chains. They cry constantly and wish they could die. But every time they ask for death, boiling water is poured on their heads and they are beaten by heavy clubs. Blood and dirt come from their mouths; their livers cuts into pieces from thirst, their eyes flow on their faces; the flesh falls from their faces; and their hair sheds from their body, due to extreme pain. Whenever their skin burns another skin grows instead. Their bones appear from under their flesh; and they become blind, deaf and dumb!(1)

O Lord! How can I tolerate this much difficulty and calamity, while I am Your weak lowly, base, wretched and miserable slave?

Though my worship is not perfect and my sins are not few, I am Your lover. I love the prophets and Imams (as) and I love worshipping You. I am not a sinner by nature; if I commit sins, it is because of my lack of knowledge, will, and understanding. My excessive sins are because of my lust and carnal soul. I

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 8/ 354, Kitab Zikr Al-Mowt, Al-Qawl fi Sifat Al-Jahannam.

am willing to worship perfectly and sincerely. I tend to be pure of any sins. I hate Satan and tyrants. Forgive and help me; save me from sins; help me in worshipping You; release me from the Hell and take me to Paradise.

یا إِلهی وَرَبّی وَسَیِّدِی وَمَوْلایَ لأیِّ الاُْمُورِ إِلَیْکَ أَشْکُو وَلِما مِنْها أَضِجُّ وَأَبْکی لإَِلیمِ الْعَذابِ وَشِدَّتِهِ، أَمْ لِطُولِ الْبَلاءِ وَمُدَّتِهِ، فَلَئِنْ صَیَّرْتَنی لِلْعُقُوباتِ مَعَ أَعْدائِکَ وَجَمَعْتَ بَیْنی وَبَیْنَ أَهْلِ بَلائِکَ وَفَرَّقْتَ بَیْنی وَبَیْنَ أَحِبّائِکَ وَأَوْلیائِکَ، فَهَبْنی یا إِلهی وَسَیِّدِی وَمَوْلایَ وَرَبّی صَبَرْتُ عَلی عَذابِکَ فَکَیْفَ أَصْبِرُ عَلی فِراقِکَ، وَهَبْنی یا إِلهی صَبَرْتُ عَلی حَرِّ نارِکَ فَکَیْفَ أَصْبِرُ عَنِ النَّظَرِ إِلی کَرامَتِکَ أَمْ کَیْفَ أَسْکُنُ فِی النّارِ وَرَجائی عَفْوُکَ

My Lord! My Lord! My Master! My Protector! For which things would I complain to You and for which of them would I lament and weep? For the pain and severity of chastisement? Or for the length and period of tribulation? So if You subject me to the punishments with Your enemies, gather me with the people of Your tribulation and separate me from Your friends and saints then suppose, my Allah, my Master, my Protector and my Lord, that I am able to endure Your chastisement, How can I endure separation from You? And suppose that I am able to endure the heat of Your Fire, How can I endure not gazing upon Your Generosity? Or how can I dwell in the Fire while my hope is Your pardon?

Complain to the Friend

The Commander of the lovers, in this part of the supplication, complains

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about tribulations and chastisements. In other words, he wants to say: O Allah! I know no one but You to heal my pain and eliminate my tribulation. All the beings are dependent upon You and are poor and weak. A poor one cannot do anything and a weak one cannot solve problems. The key to solving any problem is in Your hands and the cure for any disease is possible with Your Power. You are the One in Whose presence Hadrat Fatima Al-Zahra (s.a) wept and said: “O Allah! I ask You something which can be granted only by You. I ask You guidance, piety, independence, chastity and doing what You like and are pleased with. O Lord! We ask You power for our weakness, wealth for our poorness, and knowledge and patience for our ignorance. O Allah! Bless Muhammad (S) and his progeny! Help us in worshipping, obeying and remembering You, by Your Compassion, O the most Merciful of the Merciful!(1)

O Allah! You are the One to Whom Prophet Abraham (as), along with his son Ismael, prayed humbly and asked things which could be fulfilled only by You: “And when Abraham and Isma’il raised the foundations of the House: Our Lord! Accept it from us; surely Thou are the Hearing, the Knowing. Our Lord! And make us both submissive to Thee and show us our ways of devotion and turn to us mercifully, surely Thou are the Oft-returning to Mercy, the Merciful. Our Lord! And raise up in them

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 87/ 338, Bab 9, tradition 53 “Yawm Al-Khamis”.

a Messenger from among them who shall recite to them Thy communications and teach them the Book and the wisdom, and purify them; surely Thou are the Mighty, the Wise. (2:127-129)”

You are the One for Whom Noah tolerated the pestering of his people for nine hundred and fifty years, and then to You he complained to descend water from the heaven and through the earth with all Your Power, drowning all Your enemies and saving Noah and his disciples.

You are the One Who made a few Muslims along with the Prophet of Islam (S) dominate the disbelievers, whose number and facilities were three times more than the Muslims in battle of Badr.

Now, I take refuge to you form difficulties and tribulations. You are the One Who can remove my problems with a single reward and grant me peace and ease.

You are the One to Whom all the prophets, Imams (as), believers, repented and sorrowful servants complained from their problems and You accepted, treated, and saved them.

Which patient came toward You but You did not cure him? Which poor one came to You but You did not enrich him? Which unfortunate one came to You but You did not fulfill his desire? Which supplicant came to You but You did not grant him his wish? Which needy one came to You but returned with his problem unsolved? Which repented one came to You without his repentance being accepted?

Lamenting and Weeping

Weeping is one of Allah’s greatest gifts to the servant. Weeping implies the heart’s

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humbleness to Allah and a pure spirit.

The Holy Qur’an has considered weeping a sign of the believers and Allah’s lovers;

وَإِذَا سَمِعُوا مَا أُنزِلَ إِلَی الرَّسُولِ تَرَی أَعْیُنَهُمْ تَفِیضُ مِنْ الدَّمْعِ مِمَّا عَرَفُوا مِنْ الْحَقِّ یَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا آمَنَّا فَاکْتُبْنَا مَعَ الشَّاهِدِینَ.

And when they hear what has been revealed to the Messenger you will see their eyes overflowing with fears on account of the truth that they recognize; they say: Our Lord! We believe, so write us down with the witness of truth. (5:83)

The messenger of Allah told Imam ‘Ali (as):

أوصِیکَ یَا عَلِیُّ فِی نَفْسِکَ بِخِصَالٍ فَاحْفَظْهَا! اَللَّهُمَّ أعِنْهُ… وَالرَّابِعَهُ البُکَاءُ للهِ یَبْنِی لَکَ بِکُلِّ دَمْعَهٍ بَیْتاً فِی الجَنَّهِ.

O ‘Ali! I recommend you to develop and maintain some characteristics in yourself, may Allah help you! … And the fourth characteristic is weeping for the sake of Allah. For each of your tear drops, a house is given to you in Paradise.(1)

The Prophet (S) also stated:

طُوبَی لِصُورَهٍ نَظَرَ اللهُ إلَیْهَا تَبْکی عَلَی ذَنْبٍ مِنْ خَشْیَهِ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ لَمْ یَطَّلِعْ عَلَی ذَلِکَ الذَّنْبِ غَیْرُهُ.

Blessed is the one to whose face Allah has regard while he is weeping for his sin, out of Allah’s fear, and no one knows of that sin but Allah.(2)

مَنْ ذَرَفَتْ عَیْناهُ مِنْ خَشْیَهِ اللهِ کَانَ لَهُ بِکُلِّ قَطْرَهٍ مِنْ دُمُوعِهِ مِثْلُ جَبَلِ أُحُدٍ یَکُونُ فِی مِیزَانِهِ مِنَ الأجْرِ.

The reward of someone whose eyes weep from Allah’s fear will be as heavy as Mount Uhud for any drop.(3)

مَنْ خَرَجَ مِنْ عَیْنَیْهِ مِثْلُ الذُّبَابِ مِنَ الدَّمْعِ مِنْ خَشْیَهِ اللهِ آمَنَهُ اللهُ

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 66/ 391, Bab 38, tradition 68; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 536, Al-Buka’, tradition 1829.
2- Jami’ Al-Akhbar: 97, Al-Fasl Al-Rabi’ wa Al-Khamsun; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 536, Al-Buka’, tradition 1830.
3- Amali Saduq: 431, Al-Majlis Al-Sadis wa Al-Sittun; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 536, Al-Buka’, tradition 1831.

بِهِ یَوْمَ الفَزَعِ الأکْبَرِ.

The one whose eyes weep from Allah’s fear as small as a mosquito will be saved from the Hereafter fear by Allah.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

بُکَاءُ العُیُونِ وَخَشْیَهُ القُلُوبِ مِنْ رَحْمَهِ اللهِ تَعَالَی ذِکْرُهُ، فَإذَا وَجَدْتُمُوهَا فَاغْتَنِمُوا الدُّعَاءَ.

The weeping of the eyes and the fear of the hearts are Allah’s Mercy; if you found them seize the chance to pray, because a prayer along with weeping and fear will be accepted.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

مَا مِنْ شَیْءٍ إلاَّ وَلَهُ کَیْلٌ وَوَزْنٌ، إلاَّ الدُّمُوعَ؛ فَإنَّ القَطْرَهَ تُطْفِئُ بِحَاراً مِنَ النَّارِ، وَلَو أنَّ باکِیاً بَکَی فِی أُمَّهٍ لَرُحِمُوا.

Everything has a special scale except tears; a drop of tear putts off oceans of fire. Allah forbids inferno from burning a tearful eye. In fact if there’s one tearful person (from Allah’s fear) in any nation, all the people will be forgiven.(3)

Yahya Ibn Mu’adh said: “Anyone who weeps in his dream will be happy in reality. The worldly life is like a dream and the Hereafter is reality, so weep in the world to be happy on the Last Day.”

Friends’ Remoteness

A person who loves Allah’s prophets, Imams, and friends wishes to see and accompany them in the Hereafter. If Allah detaches him from His loved ones due to some sins and places him among his enemies instead, this punishment will be harsher, and hotter than the Fire.

The pain of remoteness is only understandable for the one who has tasted it!

The pain of remoteness was experienced by Adam who was deprived of his divine position

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 90/ 336, Bab 19, tradition 30; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 536, Al-Buka’, tradition 1834.
2- Makarim al-Akhlaq: 317, fi Al-Buka’; Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 536, al-Buka’, tradition 1835.
3- Al-Kafi: 2/481, Bab Al-Buka’, tradition 1.

in Paradise, besides the angels and in nearness of Allah, because of approaching the forbidden tree!

The pain of remoteness was experienced by Job who lost his family, wealth, honor, and health as a divine test.

The pain of remoteness was experienced by Jonah who was deprived of world’s vast space and got entangled in the fish’s stomach.

The pain of remoteness was experienced by Jacob who wept in the absence of his dear one until he got blind.

The pain of remoteness was experienced by Josef who was remote from his kind father, Jacob, and got entangled in the deep well and then in the prison.

But the Merciful Allah cured the pain of remoteness for Adam by his repentance and healed the pain of remoteness for Job by returning to him what he had lost. The almighty alleviated the pain of remoteness for Jonah by rescuing him from the fish’s belly and the pain of remoteness for Jacob and Josef by helping them meet each other again.

O the curer of the bitter pain of remoteness! Do not intend for us, the lovers of prophets and Imams (as), to be remote from them in the Hereafter and placed in the Hell! Suppose we can tolerate the chastisement and remoteness from the prophets and Imams (as), how can we bear remoteness from You?

Greed for the Noble Servants’ Position

O Allah! Suppose I can stand Your burning Fire, how can I ignore the Blessings You grant Your noble servants?

It is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as) that the Almighty has not created anyone

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except that He has defined a position in Paradise and another in hell for him. When the inhabitants of paradise settle in it and the Hell inhabitants are sent to it, a caller tells the dwellers of Paradise to look at their position in Hell and says: “This is the position that you would have entered if you had committed sins.” So the dwellers of Paradise get so relieved and happy that if there were any death in Paradise, they would die of happiness.

Afterwards, the caller calls the dwellers of Hell to look up to their supposed positions and blessings in the Paradise and says: “If you had worshipped Allah you could have won these positions.” So the inhabitants of the Hell get so depressed that they nearly die, if there were any death in the Hell.

Hope for Forgiveness

My Lord! How can I be relaxed in the Fire while I only hope for Your Forgiveness; the forgiveness that is repeatedly promised to the sinners in the Holy Qur’an.

My Allah! How many poor servants who had hope for other people’s help and they were not left deprived, let alone those who hope for Your Forgiveness.

‘Attar, the poet, has written in his Ilahinameh that a wrongdoer female singer lived in Mecca. She attended debauchery ceremonies, danced, and sang in them.

Some years after the Prophet’s Hijra, this woman who had lost her youth and beauty and could not sing as before, and thus could not make her ends meet, came to the Prophet of Islam

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(S), out of misery. The Prophet (S) asked her: “Have you come here for a worldly interaction or a heavenly one?” The woman said: “Neither for the former nor for the latter; rather I have come in hope of your generosity.” The Prophet (S) got delighted and granted the woman his holy cloak and then told his disciples: “Grant her as much as you can afford!”

So a sinful woman went to Medina in hope for Your Prophet’s bounty, which is a sign of Your Blessings, and returned satisfied with a bountiful grant. How can I return destitute from Your Presence while I have hope for Your Mercy and Forgiveness?

فَبِعِزَّتِکَ یا سَیِّدی وَمَوْلایَ اُقْسِمُ صادِقاً لَئِنْ تَرَکْتَنی ناطِقاً لإَِضِجَّنَّ إِلَیْکَ بَیْنَ أَهْلِها ضَجیجَ الآمِلینَ وَلأصْرُخَنَّ إِلَیْکَ صُراخَ الْمَسْتَصْرِخینَ، وَلأََبْکِیَنَّ عَلَیْکَ بُکاءَ الْفاقِدینَ، وَلأَُنادِیَنَّکَ أَیْنَ کُنْتَ یا وَلِیَّ الْمُؤْمِنینَ، یا غایَهَ آمالِ الْعارِفینَ، یا غِیاثَ الْمُسْتَغیثینَ، یا حَبیبَ قُلُوبِ الصّادِقینَ، وَیا إِلهَ الْعالَمینَ

So by Your Might, my master and my Protector, I swear sincerely, if You leave me with speech, I will lament before You from the midst of the Fire’s inhabitants with the lamentation of the hopeful; I will cry to You with the cry of those crying for help; I will weep before You with the weeping of the bereft; and I will call upon You, Where are You, O Sponsor of the believers, O Goal of the hopes of Your Knowers! O Aid of those who seek assistance, O Friend of the hearts of the sincere, and O

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Allah of all the world’s inhabitants!

This part of the supplication, like the previous part, includes the supplicant’s beseech and prayer to the Almighty in order to attract His attention, and if is doomed to the Hell, than to save him from the chastisement.

In fact, how is the state of the servant who is under chastisement, and even worse than chastisement is suffering from remoteness of his beloved Lord?!

Which beseech and weeping is harsher than that of someone who has lost a beloved? It has been said that a mother was weeping beside her daughter’s grave. An ascetic person was passing there who said: “Good for this mother who knows what a valuable blessing she has lost!”

The Last Day certainly has very wonderful scenes and is a strange day for the people; good for those who are doomed to Allah’s Mercy and are away from chastisement. We had better compare ourselves to the scale of Holy Qur’an before we are confronted with death.

Harun and Buhlul

Harun was returning from Hajj pilgrimage and stayed in Kufah some days. One day he was passing a way when Buhlul called him by his name for three times: “Harun! Harun! Harun!” Harun said astonished: “Who is it that calls me by my name?” “The insane Buhlul,” he was answered. So he pulled the camel-litter curtain away and told Buhlul: “Do you know me?” He answered yes. Harun asked again: “Who am I?” He said: “You are the one who will be responsible and should account for an oppression

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done in the east, even if you are in the west yourself. You will be asked about it in the Hereafter because you are the country ruler.” So Harun wept from sorrow and asked Buhlul: “What do you think of me?” He said: “Compare yourself with the Holy Qur’an: “Most surely the righteous are in bliss and most surely the wicked are in burning Fire. (82:13-14)” Harun said: “How about our deeds?” Buhlul replied: “… Allah only accepts from those who guard against evil. (5:27)” Harun said again: “But what about our tie of kinship with the Prophet (S)?” Buhlul said in reply: “So when the trumpet is blown there shall be no ties of relationship between them on that day, nor they ask for each other. (23:101)” Then Harun said: “But there is the Prophet’s intercession.” And Buhlul said: “On that day no one shall avail intercession except him whom the Beneficent Allah allows and whose word He is pleased with. (20:109)” Then Harun asked him about his wish. Buhlul answered: “Forgive my sins and take me into Paradise.” Harun said: “I don’t have the power to do so, but I have been informed that you owe money to some people. Do you want me to pay your debts?” Buhlul answered: “Debts cannot be paid with debts. What you possess is people’s belongings and you are obliged to return them to the people.” So Harun stated: “Do you want me to order a life payment for you?” Buhlul answered

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him: “I am Allah’s servant and He gives me sustenance, do you think Allah remembers and protects you but not me?”

أَفَتُراکَ سُبْحانَکَ یا إِلهی وَبِحَمْدِکَ تَسْمَعُ فیها صَوْتَ عَبْدٍ مُسْلِمٍ یُسْجَنُ فیها بِمُخالَفَتِهِ، وَذاقَ طَعْمَ عَذابِها بِمَعْصِیَتِهِ وَحُبِسَ بَیْنَ أَطْباقِها بِجُرْمِهِ وَجَریرَتِهِ وَهُوَ یَضِجُّ إِلَیْکَ ضَجیجَ مُؤَمِّل لِرَحْمَتِکَ، وَیُنادیکَ بِلِسانِ أَهْلِ تَوْحیدِکَ، وَیَتَوَسَّلُ إِلَیْکَ بِرُبُوبِیَّتِکَ

Can’t You see Yourself- Glory be to You my Allah, and Yours is the praise- hearing within the Fire the voice of a slave surrendered to You, imprisoned there because of his violations, suffering the pangs of its torment because of his disobedience, and confined within its levels because of his sin and crime, while he laments before You with the lament of one hopeful for Your Mercy, calls upon You with the tongue of those who profess Your Oneness and entreats You by Your Lordship?

When reading the descriptions of the Purgatory in the Holy Qur’an and traditions of the Prophet’s Household, the true believers tremble with fear, get astonished and sincerely take refuge to Allah to be rescued from this frightening condition. This way, they are more prepared to do the obligatory deeds and refrain from the unlawful ones, and sometimes they die of extreme fear of Purgatory!

Salman and the Fearful Young Man

Shaykh Mufid narrates Ibn Abi ‘Amir who narrates Imam Sadiq (as): Salman passed the ironers’ bazaar in Kufah where he saw a young man on the ground and the people around him. They told Salman: “This man has fainted. Say something in his ear so that he will

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be conscious again. Salman came near him until he was conscious and said: “O Salman! If you heard anything about me do not believe it! When I entered this bazaar, and saw the ironers pounding with their hammers I remembered this Qur’anic verse: “And for them is the whips of iron. (22:21)” So I fainted from the chastisement fear.” Salman said: “You are worthy of being my religious brother.” So Salman loved and adored his friend, until the young man got seriously sick. Salman came to him who was near death and said: “O Angel of death! Treat my brother moderately!” And he was answered: “I treat every believer with moderation.”(1)

The Believer Woman

The great scholar, Mulla Fathullah Kashani, narrates in his exegesis book “Minhaj”: Once the Messener of Allah (S) stood for prayers in the mosque. After reciting al-Hamd (al-Fatihah) chapter of the Holy Qur’an, he began al-Hijr chapter until he reached this verse:

وَإِنَّ جَهَنَّمَ لَمَوْعِدُهُمْ أَجْمَعِینَ. لَهَا سَبْعَهُ أَبْوَابٍ لِکُلِّ بَابٍ مِنْهُمْ جُزْءٌ مَقْسُومٌ.

And surely Hell is the promised place of them all: It has seven gates; for every gate is a special class of sinners assigned. (15:43-44)

An Arab woman who was performing prayer along side the Prophet (S) fainted hearing these verses. When the Prophet (S) finished his prayer and saw the occurrence, he ordered to splash water into the woman’s face and she regained consciousness. So the Prophet (S) said: “How did you feel?” She said: “When I saw you in prayer, I got interested in performing prayer with

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1- Amali Mufid: 136, Al-Majlis Al-Thalith ‘Ashar, tradition 4; Bihar al-Anwar: 22/ 385, Bab 11, tradition 27.

you. And I got restless when you recited the two verses.” Then she said: “Woe to me because any of my limbs will be placed in one of the seven gates of Hell.” The Prophet (S) said: “That is not the case. This verse means each specific group of sinners will be chastised in one of the seven gates of Hell.” The woman told the Prophet: “I have nothing but seven slaves. I free each of them to be freed from one of the Hell gates.” Then the Revelation Angel was descended and said: “O Messenger of Allah! Give good tidings to the Arab woman that the Almighty has closed all the Hell gates and opened the gates of Paradise for her.”

A Divine tradition reads:

O son of Adam! I did not set up this Fire except for the disbeliever, the stingy, the tell-tale, the cursed by parents, the hinderer of zakat payment, the usurer, the adulterer, the unlawful seller, the forgetter of Qur’an, the annoyer of the neighbors, but those of them who repent, believe, and do good.

My servants! Have Mercy on yourselves! Because your bodies are weak, the journey is long, the load is heavy, the path is exact, the Fire is burning, the caller is the Blower Archangel, and the Judge is the Lord of the worlds.

An Interesting Advice

Someone intended to go on a travel and told Hatam al-Asamm: “Give me some advice!” So Hatam said:

“If you want a friend, Allah suffices for you.

If you want a companion, the two

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illustrious angels suffice for you.

If you want a lesson, this world suffices for you.

If you want an associate, Qur’an suffices for you.

If you want a job, worshipping suffices for you.

If you want a preacher, death suffices for you.

And if these things suffice you, then the Purgatory suffices for you!”

The explanation of beseeching Allah will come under “My Lord! My Lord!” in later parts.

یا مَوْلایَ فَکَیْفَ یَبْقی فِی الْعَذابِ وَهُوَ یَرْجُو ما سَلَفَ مِنْ حِلْمِکَ، أَمْ کَیْفَ تُؤْلِمُهُ النّارُ وَهُوَ یَأْملُ فَضْلَکَ وَرَحْمَتَکَ أَمْ کَیْفَ یُحْرِقُهُ لَهیبُها وَأَنْتَ تَسْمَعُ صَوْتَهُ وَتَری مَکانَه أَمْ کَیْفَ یَشْتَمِلُ عَلَیْهِ زَفیرُها وَأَنْتَ تَعْلَمُ ضَعْفَهُ، أَمْ کَیْفَ یَتَقَلْقَلُ بَیْنَ أَطْباقِها وَأَنْتَ تَعْلَمُ صِدْقَهُ، أَمْ کَیْفَ تَزْجُرُهُ زَبانِیَتُها وَهُوَ یُنادیکَ یا رَبَّهُ، أَمْ کَیْفَ یَرْجُو فَضْلَکَ فی عِتْقِهِ مِنْها فَتَتْرُکُهُ فیها

My Protector, so how should he remain in the chastisement while he has hope for Your previous clemency? Or how should the Fire cause him pain while he expects Your Bounty and mercy? Or how should its flames burn him while You hear his voice and see his place? Or how should its groaning encompass him while You know his weakness? Or how should he be convulsed among its levels while You know his sincerity? Or how should its keepers torture him while he calls out to You, O Lord? Or how should he have hope of Your Bounty in freeing him from it while You abandon him within it?

Allah’s Bounty and mercy

The Qur’anic verses and traditions imply that the Almighty has Mercy upon all the servants, hence He has

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granted them all material and spiritual blessings, not depriving a single one from His Bountiful blessings.

However some humans are idle and do not attempt for getting sustenance. Therefore they lose their value and are deprived of Allah’s blessings by their own will.

Anyone who wishes can gain Allah’s material blessings by lawful attempts, with no hindrance. Also he can gain Divine bliss, by sincere attempts and true belief, so that he would benefit from Allah’s Mercy in this world and the Last Day, part of which is a purified life in the world and the Paradise in the Hereafter.

Among the wonders of His Devine mercy is that His Holy Essence grants great blessing for few acts.

Solomon and the Peasant

Allah’s selected servant, Prophet Solomon (as), passed by a peasant in a splendid magnificent manner. Seeing Solomon’s glory, the peasant said: “The Beneficent Allah has granted the son of David a glorious kingdom.” This was brought to Solomon by the wind. Prophet Solomon (as) got off from his top position, went to the peasant and told him: “Do not wish something whose responsibility you cannot tolerate! If Allah accepts your glorifying him, it would be better for you than Solomon’s kingdom, because the reward of glorifying Allah is eternal but Solomon’s kingdom is finite!(1)

The late Shaykh Saduq has narrated a strange tradition in his worthy ‘Thawab Al-A’mal’: Isma’il Ibn Yasar said: I heard Imam Sadiq (as) saying:

إیَّاکُمْ وَالکَسَلَ! إنَّ رَبَّکُمْ رَحِیمٌ یَشْکُرُ القَلِیلَ. إنَّ الرَّجُلَ لَیُصَلِّی الرَّکْعَتَیْنِ تَطَوُّعاً یُرِیدُ بِهِمَا وَجْهَ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ فَیُدْخِلُهُ اللهُ

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1- Rabi’ Al-Athar.

بِهِمَا الجَنَّهَ، وَإنَّهُ لَیَتَصَدَّقُ بِالدِّرْهَمِ تَطَوُّعاً یُرِیدُ بِهِ وَجْهَ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ فَیُدْخِلُهُ اللهُ بِهِ الجَنَّهَ، وَإنَّهُ لَیَصُومُ الیَوْمَ تَطَوُّعاً یُرِیدُ بِهِ وَجْهَ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ فَیُدْخِلُهُ اللهُ بِهِ الجَنَّهَ.

Avoid laziness and dullness because Your Lord is Beneficent and grants great reward for your small acts. Someone accomplishes a two-unit prayer, not obligatorily, for Allah’s sake, so Allah takes him to Paradise for it. He willingly gives a drachma away as charity for Allah’s sake; hence Allah takes him to Paradise for it. And fasts in a day for Allah’s sake, therefore Allah takes him to Paradise for it!(1)

Amir al-Mu’minin (as) narrates that the Prophet (S) said:

مَا مِنْ شَیْءٍ أکْرَمُ عَلَی اللهِ مِنِ ابْنِ آدَمَ. (قِیلَ: یَا رَسُولَ اللهِ! وَلاَ المَلاَئِکَهُ؟ قَالَ:) المَلاَئِکَهُ مَجْبُورُونَ بِمَنْزِلَهِ الشَّمْسِ وَالقَمَرِ.

Nothing in Allah’s presence is more valuable than Adam’s progeny. He was then asked: O Messenger! Aren’t the angels valuable? He stated: The angels, just like the sun and the moon, are obliged to worship and glorify Allah.

It is only the human being who has the blessings of freedom and will. Whenever he uses this freedom in performing Allah’s orders, he would get subjected to His especial Mercy and Benevolence.

An Important Tradition

The Prophet (S) stated:

الصَّلاَهُ عَمُودُ الدِّینِ، وَفِیهَا عَشْرُ خِصَالٍ: زَیْنُ الوَجْهِ، وَنُورُ القَلْبِ، وَرَاحَهُ البَدَنِ، وَأُنْسُ القُبُورِ، وَمَنْزِلُ الرَّحْمَهِ، وَمِصْبَاحُ السَّمَاءِ، وَثِقْلُ المِیزَانِ، وَمَرْضَاهُ الرَّبِّ، وَثَمَنُ الجَنَّهِ، وَحِجَابُ النَّارِ. وَمَنْ أقَامَهَا فَقَدْ أقَامَ الدِّینَ، وَمَنْ تَرَکَها فَقَدْ هَدَمَ الدِّینَ.

Prayer (salat) is the religion’s pillar and it brings about ten features; beauty of the face, illumination

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1- Thawab al-A’mal: 39; Bihar al-Anwar: 93/ 253, Bab 30, tradition 19.

of the heart, comfort of the body, companion in the grave, bringer of Mercy, the light of the heavens, heaviness of scale in the Hereafter, satisfaction of the Lord, price of the Paradise, and hinderer of the Hell Fire, anyone who performs it has set up the religion and anyone who leaves it has obliterated the religion.(1)

It is really surprising that the Benevolent Lord has set such benefits and results for performing two units of prayer (salat), which is not hard for anyone!

The messenger of Allah (S) also stated:

مَا مِنْ صَلاَهٍ یَحْضُرُ وَقْتُهَا إلاّ نَادَی مَلَکٌ بَیْنَ یَدَیِ النَّاسِ: أیُّهَا النَّاسُ قُوموا إلَی نِیرانِکُمُ الَّتِی أوْقَدْتُمُوهَا عَلَی ظُهُورِکُمْ فَأطْفِئُوهَا بِصَلاَتِکُمْ.

No prayer time comes except that an angel calls out: ‘O People! Rise up against the Fire you have burnt behind you (due to sins) and put it off with your prayer.’(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) and the Terrified Caravan

Imam Musa Ibn Ja’far (as) says: “Imam Sadiq (as) accompanied a caravan that was going towards the desert. Then the caravan was informed that the thieves have hidden themselves on their way. The people of the caravan trembled with fear. Imam Sadiq (as) inquired about the reason for their. They said: ‘We have some property and fear that that the thieves will take it from us. Would you take them from us as the thieves might not take them from you?’ Imam (as) said: ‘You cannot be sure; maybe they only intend to rob me and then your property would be stolen by them.’ The people said again: ‘So what

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1- Mawa’izh al-’Adadiyyah: 371.
2- Man-la-yahdhuruhul-faqih: 1/ 208, Bab Fazl Al-Salat, tradition 624.

can we do? Is it wise to burry our property under the ground?’ Imam (as) answered: ‘No, because they may get damaged, someone may rob them, or you may not relocate them.’ The caravan people asked: ‘What can we do then?’ Imam Sadiq (as) said: ‘Give them to the One Who can protect them, increase the amount of them, and then give them back to you more than you need!’

‘Who is it?’ they asked. Imam replied: ‘The Lord of the worlds.’ They asked: ‘How can we do this?’ Imam (as) stated: ‘Give them away as charity to poor Muslims.’ They said: ‘We have no access to the poor in the middle of desert.’ Imam said: ‘Intend to give away one third of it so that Allah would save all of it.’ ‘We intended,’ they said. Imam Sadiq (as) said: ‘You are safe now so go on your journey.’

When the caravan moved the thieves appeared. The caravan people were afraid but Imam (as) told them: ‘Why are you afraid while Allah will save you.’ The thieves came and, recognizing Imam Sadiq (as), kissed his hands and said: ‘Last night, we dreamt of the Messenger of Allah (S) and he ordered us to protect you and the caravan; now we are at your service!’ Imam (as) said: ‘There is no need for your help. The One Who saved us from you will save us from other enemies and robbers.’ So the caravan reached the city and the people gave away one third

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of their property to the poor. Furthermore, they witnessed abundance in their wealth; every drachma got multiplied by ten. They were astonished at this and Imam Sadiq (as) told them: ‘Now that you know about trading with Allah, continue it!’”(1)

The Wonder of Allah’s favorites

When Amir al-Mu’minin (as) reached the region of Siffin, Mu’awiya had blocked all the water ways to inflict Imam’s soldiers into trouble and weaken their fighting ability. Imam ‘Ali (as) ordered a group of fighters under the guidance of Imam Husayn (as) to regain the water way. Imam Husayn (as) attacked the water resource, so Mu’awiya’s guards fled the place and water was now accessible for the Muslim army. Some people suggested Amir al-Mu’minin (as) to cut off the water way for Mu’awiya and his troops. Imam (as) stated: “By Allah that I don’t do so.” Then he sent a convoy to Mu’awiya to tell him: “Your army is free to take as much water as it wants.”

A Strange letter from Imam al-Ridha (as)

Bazanti, a reliable Shi’ite narrator says: I read Imam al-Ridha’s letter from Khorasan to his son, Imam Jawad (as), in Medina. He had written:

My Son! I have been informed that whenever you want to go out and mount your horse, the servants take you out from the small door of the house. This is because of their stinginess so that you could not grant anything to others. I ask you, by my fatherhood and Imamate, to come and go from the larger door. Also bring money with yourself so that you can give away

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1- ‘Uyun Akhbar al-Ridha: 2/4, Bab 30, tradition 9; Bihar al-Anwar: 93/ 120, bab 14, tradition 23.

to the poor. If your uncles wanted money, don’t give them less than fifty drachmas and do not give less than twenty five drachmas to your aunts and you are free to pay them more. I want Allah to grant you high position and status. Donate money and do not fear poverty by the Owner of the Empyrean!(1)

When Allah’s favorite servants are this generous to other servants, what would be the level of Allah’s Generosity?

It is because of Allah’s indefinite Mercy and unending benevolence that Amir al-Mu’minin (as), after saying ‘O Allah! Can’t you see yourself hearing within the Fire the voice of a slave surrendered to You, imprisoned there because of his violations’, says ‘Far be it from You! That is not what is expected of You.’

هَیْهاتَ ما ذلِکَ الظَّنُ بِکَ وَلأَ الْمَعْرُوفُ مِنْ فَضْلِکَ وَلا مُشْبِهٌ لِما عامَلْتَ بِهِ الْمُوَحِّدینَ مِنْ بِرِّکَ وَإِحْسانِکَ، فَبِالْیَقینِ أَقْطَعُ لَوْ لا ما حَکَمْتَ بِهِ مِنْ تَعْذیبِ جاحِدیکَ، وَقَضَیْتَ بِهِ مِنْ إِخْلادِ مُعانِدِیکَ لَجَعَلْتَ النّارَ کُلَّها بَرْداً وَسَلاماً وَما کانَت لإَِحَد فیها مَقَرّاً وَلا مُقاماً لکِنَّکَ تَقَدَّسَتْ أَسْماؤُکَ أَقْسَمْتَ أَنْ تَمْلأََها مِنَ الْکافِرینَ مِنَ الْجِنَّهِ وَالنّاسِ أَجْمَعینَ، وَأَنْ تُخَلِّدَ فیهَا الْمُعانِدینَ وَأَنْتَ جَلَّ ثَناؤُکَ قُلْتَ مُبْتَدِئاً، وَتَطَوَّلْتَ بِالاًِنْعامِ مُتَکَرِّماً: ”أَفَمَنْ کانَ مُؤْمِناً کَمَنْ کانَ فاسِقاً لا یَسْتَوُونَ.“

Far be it from You! That is not what is expected of You, nor what is well-known of Your Bounty; nor is it similar to the goodness and kindness You have shown to those who profess Your Oneness. So I declare with certainty that were it not

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1- ‘Uyun Akhbar al-Ridha: 2/8, tradition 20.

for what You have decreed concerning the chastisement of Your deniers and what You have foreordained concerning the everlasting home of those who stubbornly resist, You would make the Fire, all of it, coolness and safety, and no one would have a place of rest or abode within it. But You- holy are Your Names- have sworn that You will fill it with the unbelievers, both jinn and men, and that You will place those, who stubbornly resist, therein forever. And You- majestic is Your eulogy- said through kindness as a favor: what? Is he who has been a believer like him who has been ungodly? They are not equal.

The Kind Embrace

None of the prophets (as), the Imams (as), and favorite servants expected Allah to treat them with chastisement; the Almighty Who has called Himself in the Holy Qur’an as the Most Merciful of the merciful, the Forgiver, the Generous, the Lover, the Holy, the Fine, and the Relenting.

The chastisement of the Hereafter is not related to the believers at all. It is the bitter fruit of denying the truth and of enmity with Allah. The chastisement of the Hereafter is the reward of the proud and the sinner. It is the product of wrongdoing and corruption. It is in fact the result of human deeds and nothing else.

Why should the one who is not a denier and an enemy of Allah, while some rays of Allah’s Unity, belief, love, and affection shines in his heart, and be possesses righteous morality and

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virtuous deeds to some extent, be chastised?

Such a person faces a Holy and Kind Lord; the One Who invites any sinner to repentance in order to forgive him, calls any broken servant to compensate his loss and any patient to cure him.

Someone told a devotee servant of Allah: “I am polluted with wrongdoing. Do you think I would be accepted?” He replied: “Woe be on you! Allah calls His enemies and deniers of the truth; how is it possible that He rejects someone who seeks refuge to Him?!”

The late Ibn Fahad al-Hilli in his book “‘Uddat al-Da’i” has narrated: “When the Almighty sent Moses to the Pharaoh to warn him of wrongdoing, He told Moses: ‘Say to Pharaoh that I hurry more in forgiving the sins and being patient with the sinners than taking wrath and chastisement.’”

Abraham’s Impatience of Sins

In the exegesis of the holy verse:

وَکَذَلِکَ نُرِی إِبْرَاهِیمَ مَلَکُوتَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَلِیَکُونَ مِنْ الْمُوقِنِینَ.

So also did We show Abraham the power and the laws of the heavens and the earth, that he might (with understanding) have certitude. (6:75)

It is written that when Allah showed Abraham the whole of heavens and the earth and uncovered any spiritual veils for him, he witnessed everything in the earth as well as an adulterer man and woman. He cursed them immediately so they died. Then he saw two other ones in the same state, so he cursed them again and they died too. The third time he saw another adulterer couple and he wanted to curse them

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when it was revealed to him: “Take your curse off from My servants; surely I am the Forgiver, the Merciful, the Patient, and the Omnipotent; the sin of My servants does not harm Me, as their worship does not benefit Me.

I treat My servants in one of the three ways; either they repent and I accept their repentance, forgive their sins, and hide their faults; or I remove chastisement from them because I know that their progeny will be believers, so I treat the fathers moderately until their children are born, and then if the fathers have not repented, I will chastise them; or if they belong to neither group, I will prepare a chastisement for them which is greater than what you want for them.

O Abraham! Leave Me with My servants because I am the Patient, the Wise, and the Omnipotent. I arrange their lives based on My Wisdom, according to their destiny and My Will.(1)

A Strange Truth

In the excellent book ‘Ilm al-Yaqin of the great philosopher and scholar al-Faydh al-Kashani, we read:

A servant’s evil acts are more than his good deeds in the Hereafter, so he is brought to Hell. At this time the revelation angel, Gabriel, is addressed: “Ask My servant if he has accompanied the scholars in the world so that I would accept their intercession for him.” The sinner responds negatively. Then there is an address again: “Ask if he has sat with the scholars for eating food.” The sinner’s answer is again no. “Have you sat

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1- Tafsir Burhan: under verse 75 of An’am, tradition 9.

where a scholar had sat?” he is asked. “No,” he says again. “Are you named after a scholar?” “No.” “Have you had a friend who had loved the scholars?” The sinner responds positively. So Allah calls: “O Gabriel! I forgave him out of My Comprehensive Mercy; treat him kindly and bring him to Paradise!”

Allah’s Mercy on the Youth in David’s Age

Shaykh Saduq narrates: Prophet David (as) had a gathering which was attended, among others, by a young, slim, and silent man. One day, the angel of death came to David’s gathering while he stared at that young man. David (as) asked the death angel: “Are you looking at him?” The angel said: “Yes, I am to seize his spirit in seven days.” David felt pity and mercy for the man and told him: “Do you have a wife?” The young man replied: “No, I am not married yet.” David told him to go to a famous person’s house, propose his daughter, and marry her the same night. Then he gave him a great amount of money so that he may buy all the necessary things and told him to come back to him after seven days.

The young man went and seven days after his marriage returned to David (as). David asked him: “How is your state?” The young man answered: “I am in an even better state than you.” David waited his death for a while but he did not die. So he told the man to go and come back seven days later.

The young man left

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and returned again in seven days, but he did not die. Therefore David told him to return in seven days again. After seven days, when the man came to David, the death angel came to David (as) too. David asked the angel: “Didn’t you tell that you had to seize his soul?” The death angel replied: “You are right, but because of your mercy, Allah had Mercy on the man and granted him another thirty years to live.”(1)

The Merciful Allah descends His Mercy to His servant and treats him kindly by the smallest excuses.

Features of the Freed Captive

It is narrated in a very important tradition of Imam Sadiq (as) that a group of war captives were brought to the Prophet of Islam (S).

The Messenger (S) ordered to kill all of them except one. That person was surprised and said: “Why did you issue my freedom?” The Prophet (S) said: “I was informed by the revelation angel that you have five features that Allah loves; great zeal in fighting, generosity, good-temperedness, truth in speaking, and courage.” After this strange happening, that freed captive embraced Islam and in one of battles alongside the Prophet (S), was martyred.(2)

The Believing Servant

Imam Sadiq (as) ordered to whip a servant because of his sin. The servant said: “O son of the Messenger of Allah! Do you want to beat someone who has no intercessor but you? How about your mercy and kindness?” so Imam ordered to leave him. Then the servant said: “It was not you who freed me, the One

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 4/ 111, Bab 3, tradition 31.
2- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 20/ 155, tradition 25291; Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 374, Bab 92, tradition 25.

Who taught me how to speak this way rescued me.” Imam (as) said: “By Allah, this servant is a true believer and sees no one besides Allah!”

In fact, the true believers are not treated but mercifully. Any servant of Allah who testifies to His Unity and acts moderately will get subjected to His extended Mercy.

The Fate of Witness of Josef’s Innocence

In some exegesis books of the Holy Qur’an it is narrated that when Josef (as) took the crown in Egypt, he thought he needed a deputy in arranging the government affairs, so that he may people’s lives and behave kindly to them. The revelation angel came to him from Allah and told him: “Allah says that you need a deputy.” Josef (as) answered: “I was thinking about the same issue, but who deserves this position?” Gabriel said: “Tomorrow morning when you move from your headquarters, appoint the first person who is worthy of this position.” Next morning, the first man that Josef saw was a weak, thin wood carrier, so Josef thought he cannot bear the heavy responsibility. He wanted to pass by the wood carrier when Gabriel descended and said: “Do not leave this person! He was the one who testified to your innocence and purity before Egypt’s king so he is worthy of being your deputy.”

While the Almighty grants the deputy position to a testifier of Josef’s innocence, what would he grant someone who have testified to His Unity throughout a lifetime?!

True! The extent of Allah’s Mercy and Kindness is not understandable by any

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wise and intellectual man.

إِلهی وَسَیِّدی فَأَسْأَلُکَ بِالْقُدْرَهِ الَّتی قَدَّرْتَها، وَبِالْقَضِیَّهِ الَّتی حَتَمْتَها وَحَکَمْتَها وَغَلَبْتَ مَنْ عَلَیْهِ أَجْرَیْتَها أَنْ تَهَبَ لی فی هذِهِ اللَّیْلَهِ وَفی هذِهِ السّاعَهِ کُلَّ جُرْم أَجْرَمْتُهُ، وَکُلَّ ذَنْب أَذْنَبْتُهُ، وَکُلَّ قَبِیح أَسْرَرْتُهُ، وَکُلَّ جَهْل عَمِلْتُهُ، کَتَمْتُهُ أَوْ أَعْلَنْتُهُ أَخْفَیْتُهُ أَوْ أَظْهَرْتُهُ

My Allah and My master! So I ask You by the power You have apportioned. And the decision which You have determined and imposed, and through which You have overcome him toward whom it has been put into effect- that You forgive me in this night and at this hour every offence I have committed, every sin I have performed, every wicked thing I have concealed, every folly I have enacted- whether I have hidden it or announced it, whether I have concealed it or manifested it.

At the beginning of the book, especially in the section of “O Allah! Forgive my sins…” different sins as well as their consequences were explained. In this part too, Imam ‘Ali (as) mentions the hidden and apparent sins and asks Allah to forgive them all.

Thursday night is the night of beseeching Allah for repentance, supplication, and weeping. We go in the presence of Allah so that he would forgive our sins and have mercy, pardon, regard, and beneficence on us in this night.

وَکُلَّ سَیِّئَه أَمَرْتَ بِإِثْباتِهَا الْکِرامَ الْکاتِبینَ الَّذینَ وَکَّلْتَهُمْ بِحِفْظِ ما یَکُونُ مِنّی وَجَعَلْتَهُمْ شُهُوداً عَلَیَّ مَعَ جَوارِحی، وَکُنْتَ أَنْتَ الرَّقیبَ عَلَیَّ مِنْ وَرائِهِمْ، وَالشّاهِدَ لِما خَفِیَ عَنْهُمْ، وَبِرَحْمَتِکَ أَخْفَیْتَهُ، وَبِفَضْلِکَ سَتَرْتَهُ، وَأَنْ تُوَفِّرَ حَظّی مِنْ کُلِّ خَیْر تُنَزِّلُهُ أَوْ

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إِحْسان فَضَّلْتَهُ أَوْ بِرٍّ تَنْشُرُهُ أَوْ رِزْق تَبْسُطُهُ أَوْ ذَنْب تَغْفِرُهُ أَوْ خَطَأ تَسْتُرُهُ

And every evil act which You have commanded the Noble Writers to record, those whom You have appointed to watch over every action of mine and whom You have made, along with my limbs, witness against me. And You are Yourself the Watcher over me from behind them, and the Witness of what is hidden from them, but through Your mercy You concealed it and through Your Bounty You veiled it. (And I ask You) that you bestow upon me an abundant share of every good You send down, kindness You confer; goodness You unfold; provision You spread out; sin You forgive or error You cover.

The Two Illustrious Angels and Body Limbs

The recording of human deeds by the two writer angels as well as the limbs’ being witnessnes for human behavior are facts mentioned in the Holy Qur’an and the traditions.

وَإِنَّ عَلَیْکُمْ لَحَافِظِینَ. کِرَامًا کَاتِبِینَ. یَعْلَمُونَ مَا تَفْعَلُونَ.

And most surely there are keepers over you. Honorable records, they know what you do. (82:10-12)

حَتَّی إِذَا مَا جَاءُوهَا شَهِدَ عَلَیْهِمْ سَمْعُهُمْ وَأَبْصَارُهُمْ وَجُلُودُهُمْ بِمَا کَانُوا یَعْمَلُونَ. وَقَالُوا لِجُلُودِهِمْ لِمَ شَهِدْتُمْ عَلَیْنَا؟ قَالُوا أَنطَقَنَا اللَّهُ الَّذِی أَنطَقَ کُلَّ شَیْءٍ.

Until when they come to it, their ears and their eyes and their skins shall bear witness against them as to what they did. And they should say to their skins: why have you borne witness against us? They shall say: Allah Who makes everything speak has made us speak. (41:21)

یَوْمَ تَشْهَدُ عَلَیْهِمْ أَلْسِنَتُهُمْ وَأَیْدِیهِمْ وَأَرْجُلُهُمْ بِمَا کَانُوا

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یَعْمَلُونَ.

On the day when their tongues and their hands and their feet shall bear witness against them as to what they did. (24:24)

الْیَوْمَ نَخْتِمُ عَلَی أَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَتُکَلِّمُنَا أَیْدِیهِمْ وَتَشْهَدُ أَرْجُلُهُمْ بِمَا کَانُوا یَکْسِبُونَ.

On that day We will set a seal upon their mouths, and their hands shall speak to Us, and their feet shall bear witness of what they earned. (36:65)

مَا یَلْفِظُ مِنْ قَوْلٍ إِلاَّ لَدَیْهِ رَقِیبٌ عَتِیدٌ.

He utters not a word but there is by him a watcher at hand. (50:18)

Besides the writer angels and human limbs, the earth will testifiy against human deeds, as stated in Zilzal chapter:

یَوْمَئِذٍ تُحَدِّثُ أَخْبَارَهَا. بِأَنَّ رَبَّکَ أَوْحَی لَهَا.

On that day, the earth shall tell it news, because your Lord had inspired her. (99:4-5)

Also the Almighty, the prophets (as), and Imams (as) see human deeds and will testify against him, according to some verses in Tawbah chapter of the holy Qur’an:

وَقُلْ اعْمَلُوا فَسَیَرَی اللَّهُ عَمَلَکُمْ وَرَسُولُهُ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَسَتُرَدُّونَ إِلَی عَالِمِ الْغَیْبِ وَالشَّهَادَهِ فَیُنَبِّئُکُمْ بِمَا کُنتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ.

And say: Work! So Allah will see your work and so will His Messenger and the believers; and you shall be brought back to the Knower of the unseen and the seen, then He will inform you of what you did. (9:105)

According to such Qur’anic verses, the testimony of the witnesses on the Day of Resurrection will be against the disbelievers, enemies, and wrongdoers; because the believers and the repented servants will be subjected to Allah’s Mercy on that day; their books of deed will not be opened

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before other people; Allah will make the witnesses forget the believers’ sins and will save their faces.

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

مَنْ تَابَ تَابَ اللهُ عَلَیْهِ وَأُمِرَتْ جَوَارِحُهُ أنْ تَسْتُرَ عَلَیْهِ وَبِقَاعُ الأرْضِ أنْ تَکْتُمَ عَلَیْهِ وأُنْسِیَتِ الحَفَظَهُ مَا کَانَتْ تَکْتُبُ عَلَیْهِ.

One who repents Allah would accept his repentance and order his organs to cover sins from his sight. He would order the earth segments to make him neglect his sins, and makes the Writers forget what they have written in that servant's letter of deeds.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

إذَا تَابَ العَبْدُ تَوبَهً نَصُوحاً أحَبَّهُ اللهُ وَسَتَرَ عَلَیْهِ... یُنْسِی مَلَکَیْهِ مَا کَانَا یَکْتُبَانِ عَلَیْهِ، وَیُوحِی إلَی جَوارِحِهِ وَإلَی بِقَاعِ الأرْضِ أنْ اکْتُمِی عَلَیْهِ ذُنُوبَهُ؛ فَیَلْقَی اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ حِینَ یَلْقَاهُ وَلَیْسَ شَیْءٌ یَشْهَدُ عَلَیْهِ بِشَیْءٍ مِنَ الذُّنُوبِ.

‘If a servant repents sincerely, Allah would love him and cover his faults in the world and the Hereafter.’ I asked Imam Sadiq (as): ‘How will Allah cover them?’ Imam (as) replied: ‘He will make the two angels, in charge of that servant, forget all about his sins they have recorded, and will reveal to his body organs to do so. So the servant would meet Allah while there is no record of his sins.’(2)

یا رَبِّ یا رَبِّ یا رَبِّ یا إِلهی وَسَیِّدی وَمَوْلایَ وَمالِکَ رِقّی، یا مَنْ بِیَدِهِ ناصِیَتی یا عَلیماً بِضُرّی وَمَسْکَنَتی، یا خَبیراً بِفَقْری وَفاقَتی یا رَبِّ یا رَبِّ یا رَبِّ أَسْأَلُکَ بِحَقِّکَ وَقُدْسِکَ وَأَعْظَمِ صِفاتِکَ وَأَسْمائِکَ أَنْ تَجْعَلَ أَوْقاتی مِنَ اللَّیْلِ وَالنَّهارِ بِذِکْرِکَ مَعْمُورَهً، وَبِخِدْمَتِکَ مَوْصُولَهً، وَأَعْمالی عِنْدَکَ مَقْبُولَهً حَتّی تَکُونَ أَعْمالی وَأَوْرادی

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 6/ 28, Bab 20, tradition 32.
2- Al-Kafi, 2/ 436, Bab Al-Towba, tradition 12.

کُلُّها وِرْداً واحِداً وَحالی فی خِدْمَتِکَ سَرْمَداً، یا سَیِّدی یا مَنْ عَلَیْهِ مُعَوَّلی یا مَنْ إِلَیْهِ شَکَوْتُ أَحْوالی یا رَبِّ یا رَبِّ یا رَبِّ

My Lord! My Lord! My Lord! My Allah! My Master! My Protector! Owner of my bondage! O He in whose Hand is my forelock! O He who knows my affliction and my misery! O He who is aware of my poverty and indigence! My Lord! My Lord! My Lord! I ask You by Your Truth, Your Holiness and the greatness of Your Attributes and Names, that You make my times in the night and the day inhabited by Your remembrance and joined to Your service and my acts acceptable to You, so that my acts and my prayers may all be a single litany and my occupation with Your service everlasting. My Master! O He upon whom I depend! O He to whom I complain of my states! My Lord! My Lord! My Lord!

Allah’s Exalted Name

Some of the ascetic, favorite, and righteous servants believe that the holy word ‘rabb (Lord)’ is Allah’s Exalted or chief name. In Arabic, it means an Owner Who trains His creature wisely and out of Mercy. They also believe that by referring to it, one can get subjected to Allah’s Mercy, get his problems solved, and his sins forgiven.

Maybe the reason why all the prophets and Imams (as) resorted to this name in their prayers and at times of difficulty was because they knew it to be Allah’s Exalted name.

Adam and Eve, when repenting,

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stated:

رَبَّنَا ظَلَمْنَا أَنفُسَنَا وَإِنْ لَمْ تَغْفِرْ لَنَا وَتَرْحَمْنَا لَنَکُونَنَّ مِنْ الْخَاسِرِینَ.

Our Lord! We have been unjust to ourselves, and if Thou forgive us not, and have not mercy on us, we shall certainly be of the losers. (7:23)

After nine hundred and fifty years of preaching the disbelievers but receiving only disappointment in return, Noah (as) sated:

رَبِّ لاَ تَذَرْ عَلَی الأَرْضِ مِنْ الْکَافِرِینَ دَیَّارًا.

My Lord! Leave not upon the land any dweller from among the unbelieving. (71:26)

Prophet Abraham (as) said in his prayers:

رَبِّ هَبْ لِی حُکْمًا وَأَلْحِقْنِی بِالصَّالِحِینَ.

My Lord! Grant me wisdom and join me with the righteous. (26:83)

Prophet Moses (as) said when he was in need:

رَبِّ إِنِّی لِمَا أَنزَلْتَ إِلَیَّ مِنْ خَیْرٍ فَقِیرٌ.

My Lord! Surely I stand in need of whatever good Thou mayest sent down to me. (28:24)

Prophet Solomon (as), in his prayer, prayed for forgiveness of his sins and asked for a unique kingdom:

رَبِّ اغْفِرْ لِی وَهَبْ لِی مُلْکًا لاَ یَنْبَغِی لأَحَدٍ مِنْ بَعْدِی إِنَّکَ أَنْتَ الْوَهَّابُ.

My Lord! Forgive me and grant me a kingdom which is not fit for being inherited by anyone after me. (38:35)

Prophet Zachariah (as) said when asking for a child:

رَبِّ لاَ تَذَرْنِی فَرْدًا وَأَنْتَ خَیْرُ الْوَارِثِینَ.

My Lord! Leave me not alone; and Thou art the best of inheritors. (21:89)

Prophet Josef (as), for thanking Allah and asking Him his wish, said:

رَبِّ قَدْ آتَیْتَنِی مِنْ الْمُلْکِ وَعَلَّمْتَنِی مِنْ تَأْوِیلِ الأَحَادِیثِ فَاطِرَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ أَنْتَ وَلِیِّی فِی الدُّنْیَا وَالآخِرَهِ تَوَفَّنِی مُسْلِمًا وَأَلْحِقْنِی بِالصَّالِحِینَ.

My Lord! Thou has given me of the kingdom and taught me the interpretation

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of sayings. Originator of the heavens and the earth! Thou art my guardian in this world and the Hereafter; make me die a Muslim and join me with the good. (12:101)

At the time of extreme tribulation, Prophet Job (as) stated:

وَأَیُّوبَ إِذْ نَادَی رَبَّهُ أَنِّی مَسَّنِی الضُّرُّ وَأَنْتَ أَرْحَمُ الرَّاحِمِینَ.

And Ayyub, when he cried to his Lord: Harm has afflicted me and thou art the most merciful of the merciful. (21:83)

Almighty Allah has taught the Prophet of Islam (S) as follows:

وَقُلْ رَبِّ اغْفِرْ وَارْحَمْ وَأَنْتَ خَیْرُ الرَّاحِمِینَ.

And say: O My Lord! Forgive and have mercy, for Thou art the Best of all who show mercy. (23:118)

And the believer and righteous servants, when pondering on the creation of the heavens and the earth, stated:

رَبَّنَا مَا خَلَقْتَ هَذَا بَاطِلاً سُبْحَانَکَ.

Our Lord! Thou have not created this in vein! Glory be to Thee! (3:191)

And Satan, who was the most proud one, asked for respite until the Last day by this name: “He said: Give me respite until the day when they are raised. (7:14)” and the Almighty accepted the request of this cursed outcast and gave him respite only because he referred to Allah’s Exalted name.

It is narrated from the messenger of Allah (S):

Anyone who says ‘My Lord’ for seven times, Allah will fulfill his wish.

It is also narrated that when a believing servant says ‘My Lord’ once, Allah says ‘Here I am’. And when the servant calls Allah for the second and third times, he will be addressed: ‘Ask Me so that I

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may grant you!’(1)

Accepted Deeds

One of the common prayers of all the prophets (as), Imams (as) and Allah’s favorite servants has always been for the Almighty to accept their deeds and treat them with His Mercy.

They have been aware of the fact that no one is accepted in Allah’s presence without having deeds; and no one is accepted in His presence with deeds only; other necessary characteristics are belief and sincerity without which no one is subjected to Allah’s mercy. Therefore, the favorite servants paid much attention to having good deeds as well as the necessary conditions for the acceptance of deeds. And as they performed their deeds as they should, they requested Allah to accept their deeds.

The Holy Qur’an and the traditions imply that a deed is accepted provided that its performer has belief in Allah and does it for Allah’s sake and is in accord with the divine rules. It should be pointed out that the believing servant’s deed is accepted and his sin is forgiven. But the deed of a disbelieving servant, however great and worthy it might be, is not accepted and his sin, however tiny it might be, is not forgiven.

Some important traditions are narrated about worthy deeds together with its most valuable conditions in Shiite books, some of which will follow:

الشَّرَفُ عِنْدَ اللهِ سُبْحَانَهُ بِحُسْنِ الأعْمَالِ لاَ بِحُسْنِ الأقْوَالِ.

The servant’s worth and value before the Almighty is because of his good deeds not his good speech.(2)

العَمَلُ شِعَارُ المُؤمِنِ.

Deeds are the slogan of a believing servant.(3)

المُداوَمَهَ المُدَاوَمَهَ!

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1- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 5/ 220, Bab 31, tradition 5738, many other traditions about this exist in the books: al-Kafi: 2/ 520, Bab man qala ya rab…; Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 7/285, bab 32; Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 5/ 219, bab 31; Bihar al-Anwar: 90/ 233, Bab 12, etc.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 153, La yanfa’u qawla bi khayri al-amal, tradition 2838; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4050, al-amal, tradition 14260.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 151, tradition 2777; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 405, Al-Nahl, tradition 14264.

فإنَّ اللهَ لَمْ یَجْعَلْ لِعَمَلِ المُؤمِنِینَ غَایَهً إلاّ المَوْتَ.

Continue your deeds! Continue your deeds! Because Allah has not set an end for the believing servant’s deeds except his death.(1)

أعْلَی الأعْمَالِ إخْلاَصُ الإیمَانِ وَصِدْقُ الوَرَعِ وَالإیقَانِ.

The best deeds are belief, piety, and faith.(2)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

دَعَا اللهُ النَّاسَ فِی الدُّنْیَا بِآبَائِهِمْ لِیَتَعَارَفوا وَفِی الآخِرَهِ بِأعْمَالِهِمْ لِیُجَازَوا.

Allah named people after their fathers in this world in order that they would know each other and He will call the people by their deeds in the Hereafter in order that He would give them reward or punishment.(3)

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

أفْضَلُ الأعْمَالِ إیمَانٌ بِاللهِ وَتَصْدِیقٌ بِهِ وَجِهَادٌ فِی سَبِیلِ اللهِ وَحَجٌّ مَبْرُورٌ، وَأهْوَنُ عَلَیْکَ مِنْ ذَلِکَ إطْعَامُ الطَّعَامِ وَلِینُ الکَلاَمِ وَالمُسَامَحَهُ وَحُسْنُ الخُلُقِ، وَأهْوَنُ عَلَیْکَ مِنْ ذَلِکَ لاَ تَتَّهِمِ اللهَ فِی شَیْءٍ قَضَاهُ اللهُ عَلَیْکَ.

The best deed is believing in Allah, fighting in Allah’s path, and hajj pilgrimage. Other simpler deeds are feeding the poor, lenient speech, and good temperedness. Still an easier deed for you is that you do not accuse Allah in what He has destined for you.(4)

سَیِّدُ الأعْمَالِ ثَلاَثُ خِصَالٍ: إنْصَافُکَ مِنْ نَفْسِکَ وَمُواسَاتُکَ الأخَ فِی اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ وَذِکْرُ اللهِ تَعَالَی عَلَی کُلِّ حَالٍ.

The best deeds are three; treating others justly, helping the religious brothers, and remembering Allah in every state.(5)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

طُوبَی لِمَنْ أخْلَصَ للهِ عَمَلَهُ وَعِلْمَهُ وَحُبَّهُ وَبُغْضَهُ وَأخْذَهُ وَتَرْکَهُ وَکَلاَمَهُ وَصَمْتَهُ وَفِعْلَهُ وَقَوْلَهُ.

A lucky person is the one whose knowledge and behavior, friendship and enmity, taking and releasing, speaking and silence, are based on sincerity

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1- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 1/ 130, bab 19, tradition 177; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4060, Al-amal, tradition 14292.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 155, Al-Ikhlas fi Al-amal wa atharih, tradition 2899.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 78/ 208, Bab 23, tradition 23.
4- Kanz Al-Ummal:43639; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4066, Al-Amal 1, tradition 1422.
5- Mishkat al-Anwar: 55, Al-fasl Al-khamis Ashar; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4064, Al-amal 1, tradition 14326.

and Allah’s satisfaction.(1)

The Messenger of Allah (S) advised Abu-Dhar, saying:

کُنْ بِالعَمَلِ بِالتَّقْوَی أشَدَّ اهْتِمَاماً مِنْکَ بِالعَمَلِ؛ فَإنَّهُ لاَ یَقِلُّ عَمَلُ بِالتَّقْوَی، وَکَیْفَ یِقِلُّ عَمَلٌ یُتَقَبَّلُ بِقَوْلِ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: ”إِنَّمَا یَتَقَبَّلُ الله مِنَ الْمُتَّقِینَ.“

Try to have a deed adorned with piety rather than a simple deed, since a deed adorned with piety is not a small deed. How can an accepted deed be small while the Almighty says: ‘Surely Allah accepts (deeds) only from the pious.’(2)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

إنَّکَ لَنْ یُتَقَبَّلَ مِنْ عَمَلِکَ إلاّ مَا أخْلَصْتَ فِیهِ.

Surely your deeds will not be accepted except those which have been done piously.(3)

Thus, the deeds of a servant who has belief, sincerity, and piety will be accepted. Accepted deeds is so valuable that it is narrated from Imam Sadiq (as) that:

مَنْ قَبِلَ اللهُ مِنْهُ صَلاَهً وَاحِدَهً لَمْ یُعَذِّبْهُ، وَمَنْ قَبِلَ مِنْهُ حَسَنَهً لَمْ یُعَذِّبْهُ.

A person, one of whose prayers is accepted, will not be punished by Allah and anyone, one of whose deeds is accepted, will not be chastised at all.(4)

مَنْ قَبِلَ مِنْهُ حَسَنَهً وَاحِدَهً لَمْ یُعَذِّبْهُ أبَداً وَدَخَلَ الجَنَّهَ.

A person, one of whose deeds is accepted by Allah, will not be chastised at all and will get into the Paradise.(5)

O Allah! Keep us from dullness in doing our deeds! Increase our joy in performing Your deserved worship! And grant our hearts full awareness!

قَوِّ عَلی خِدْمَتِکَ جَوارِحی وَاشْدُدْ عَلَی الْعَزیمَهِ جَوانِحی وَهَبْ لِیَ الْجِدَّ فی خَشْیَتِکَ، وَالدَّوامَ فِی الاِْتِّصالِ بِخِدْمَتِکَ، حَتّی أَسْرَحَ إِلَیْکَ فی مَیادینِ السّابِقینَ وَاُسْرِعَ إِلَیْکَ فِی الْبارِزینَ وَأَشْتاقَ إِلی قُرْبِکَ

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1- Tuhaf al-’Uqul: 91; Bihar al-Anwar: 74/ 241, bab 9, tradition 1.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 74/ 88, Bab 4; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4066, Al-amal, tradition 14333.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 155, tradition 2913; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4066, Al-amal, tradition 14335.
4- Al-Kafi: 3/ 266, Bab Fazl Al-Salat, tradition 11; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/4070, Al-amal, tradition 14350.
5- Wurram Collection: 2/86; Mizan al-Hikmah: 9/ 4070, Al-amal, tradition 14351.

فِی الْمُشْتاقینَ وَأَدْنُوَ مِنْکَ دُنُوَّ الُْمخْلِصینَ، وَأَخافَکَ مَخافَهَ الْمُوقِنینَ، وَأَجْتَمِعَ فی جِوارِکَ مَعَ الْمُؤْمِنینَ

Strengthen my limbs in Your service; fortify my ribs in determination; and bestow upon me earnestness in my fear of You and continuity in my beings joined to Your service, so that I may move easily toward You in the battlefields of the foremost, hurry to You among the prominent, desire fervently Your proximity among the fervently desirous, move near to You with the nearness of the sincere, fear You with the fear of those who have conviction and gather with the believers in Your nearness.

Request for Strength

In this part of the supplication, Amir al-Mu’minin (as), the mystic and righteous servant, sees all the doors of Allah’s Mercy open to him and the acceptance of his supplication nearer, so he asks his most valuable and spiritual requests, which promote human to the peak of perfection and growth, from the Almighty. These requests are the signs of the supplicant’s mysticism, deep knowledge, and comprehensive understanding. Imam ‘Ali (as) asks Allah to strengthen his limbs in His service, that is sincere worship, as well as in serving Allah’s believing servants, which is in fact serving Him. If this spiritual power and divine strength is granted to the believing servant from the Almighty, he will find nothing sweeter than serving the Lord and His servants.

Conditions for Allah’s Special Blessings

To gain Allah’s special blessings, the mystic servant should prepare the necessary grounds for it by:

1. Avoiding the company of people with weak faith who do not try

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to strengthen their belief and should accompany the favorite servants and divine scholars instead.

2. Avoid eating doubtful meals, let alone unlawful meals, in parties and feasts of people with unlawful wealth.

3. Purifying the soul from the vices and extreme lust and adorning it with virtues and divine realities.

4. Avoiding gluttony that is the cause of satanic states and hinderer of Godly inspirations and knowledge.

5. Avoiding too much sleeping which brings about dullness in worship and the death of humane spirit.

Association and the Companion

The Messenger of Allah (S) stated:

أوْحَشُ الوَحْشَهِ قَرِینُ السُّوءِ.

The worst fear is the fear of bad companions and friends.(1)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

إحْذَرْ مُجَالَسَهَ قَرِینِ السُّوءِ، فَإنَّهُ یُهْلِکُ مُقَارِنَهُ وَیُرْدِی مُصَاحِبَهُ.

Avoid accompanying an evil friend, because such a friend abolishes his friend physically and spiritually.(2)

The ninth infallible Imam, Imam al-Jawad (as), said:

إیَّاکَ وَمُصَاحَبَهَ الشِّرِّیرِ، فَإنَّهُ کَالسَّیْفِ المَسْلُولِ؛ یَحْسُنُ مَنْظَرُهُ وَیَقْبُحُ أثَرُهُ.

Avoid accompanying a wicked person since he is like a sword without sheath whose appearance is nice but whose consequence is ugly.(3)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

إحْذَرْ مِنَ النَّاسِ ثَلاثَهً: الخَائِنَ وَالظَّلُومَ وَالنَّمَّامَ؛ لأنَّ مَنْ خَانَ لَکَ خَانَکَ، وَمَنْ ظَلَمَ لَکَ سَیَظْلِمُکَ، وَمَنْ نَمَّ لَکَ سَیَنِمُّ عَلَیْکَ.

Avoid befriending three types of people; the disloyal, the oppressor, and the tale teller. The one, who betrays you one day, will betray you another day too. The one, who oppresses others for your sake, will sooner or later oppress you’re as well. And the one, who tells other people’s tales before you, will tell your own tales to others in the future.(4)

Imam ‘Ali (as) said:

صَاحِبِ الحُکَمَاءَ وَجَالِسِ

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 71/666, Bab 10, tradition 32.
2- Ghurar al-Hikam: 431, Zam Qarin Al-Saw’, tradition 9816.
3- Bihar al-Anwar: 71/ 198, Bab 14.
4- Tuhaf al-’Uqul: 316.

الحُلَمَاءَ وَأعْرِضْ عَنِ الدُّنْیَا تَسْکُنْ جَنَّهَ المَأوَی.

Accompany the wise men and the patient people and ignore the worldly life; take home in the promised Paradise.(1)

Unlawful food

It is narrated from the Messenger of Allah (S):

مَنْ أکَلَ لُقْمَهً مِنْ حَرَامٍ لَمْ تُقْبَلْ لَهُ صَلاَهُ أرْبَعِینَ لَیْلَهً.

If one eats a bit of unlawful food, his prayer will not be accepted for forty nights.(2)

إنَّ اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ حَرَّمَ الجَنَّهَ جَسَداً غُذِّیَ بِحَرَامٍ.

Surely the Paradise is forbidden for the one who has been fed with unlawful food.(3)

إذَا وَقَعَتِ اللُّقْمَهُ مِنْ حَرَامٍ فِی جَوْفِ العَبْدِ لَعَنَهُ کُلُّ مَلَکٍ فِی السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأرْضِ.

When a bit of unlawful food is in a servant’s belly, all the angels in the heavens and the earth will curse him.(4)

Imam al-Baqir (as) said:

إنَّ الرَّجُلَ إذَا أصَابَ مَالاً مِنْ حَرَامٍ لَمْ یُقْبَلْ مِنْهُ حَجٌّ وَلاَ عُمْرَهٌ وَلاَ صِلَهُ رَحِمٍ.

When someone acquires an unlawful wealth, his Hajj and maintenance of kinship ties will not be accepted.(5)

Moral Vices

Imam Al-Sajjad (as), the fourth infallible Imam, in the eighth supplication of ‘Al-Sahifah al-Sajjadiyyah’ mentions some of the moral vices, taking refuge from them to Allah:

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّی أَعُوذُ بِکَ مِنْ هَیَجَانِ الْحِرْصِ وَسَوْرَهِ الْغَضَبِ وَغَلَبَهِ الْحَسَدِ وَضَعْفِ الصَّبْرِ وَقِلَّهِ الْقَنَاعَهِ وَشَکَاسَهِ الْخُلُقِ وَإِلْحَاحِ الشَّهْوَهِ وَمَلَکَهِ الْحَمِیَّهِ وَمُتَابَعَهِ الْهَوَی وَمُخَالَفَهِ الْهُدَی وَسِنَهِ الْغَفْلَهِ وَتَعَاطِی الْکُلْفَهِ وَإِیثَارِ الْبَاطِلِ عَلَی الْحَقِّ وَالإِصْرَارِ عَلَی الْمَأْثَمِ وَاسْتِصْغَارِ الْمَعْصِیَهِ وَاسْتِکْبَارِ الطَّاعَهِ وَمُبَاهَاهِ الْمُکْثِرِینَ وَالإِزْرَاءِ بِالْمُقِلِّینَ وَسُوءِ الْوِلاَیَهِ لِمَنْ تَحْتَ أَیْدِینَا وَتَرْکِ الشُّکْرِ لِمَنِ اصْطَنَعَ الْعَارِفَهَ عِنْدَنَا أَوْ أَنْ نَعْضُدَ ظَالِماً أَوْ نَخْذُلَ مَلْهُوفاً أَوْ نَرُومَ مَا لَیْسَ لَنَا بِحَقٍّ أَوْ نَقُولَ فِی الْعِلْمِ بِغَیْرِ عِلْمٍ وَنَعوذُ بِکَ

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1- Ghurar al-Hikam: 430, Sahib Al-Hukama’ wa Al-Ulama’, tradition 9789.
2- Mizan al-Hikmah: 3/ 1124, Al-Haram, tradition 13660.
3- Wurram Collection: 1/61, Bab Al-Itab; Mizan al-Hikmah: 3/ 1124, Al-Haram, tradition 13661.
4- Bihar al-Anwar: 100/ 12, Bab 1, tradition 52; Mizan al-Hikmah: 3/ 1124, Al-Haram, tradition 13663.
5- Amali Tusi: 680, Majlis 37, tradition 1447.

أَنْ نَنْطَوِیَ عَلَی غِشِّ أَحَدٍ.

O Allah, I seek refuge in Thee from the agitation of craving, the violence of wrath, the domination of envy, the frailty of patience, the lack of contentment, surliness of character, urgency of passion, the disposition to vehemence, following caprice, opposing guidance, the sleep of heedlessness, undertaking the toilsome, preferring falsehood over truth, persisting in sin, making little of disobedience, making much of obedience, vying with the wealthy, disparaging the poor, guarding badly over those in our hands, failing to thank those who have done good to us, aiding a wrongdoer, abandoning someone troubled, wanting what is not rightfully ours, and speaking about knowledge without knowing. We seek refuge in Thee from harboring dishonesty toward anyone…

These vices are greed, anger, jealousy, impatience, lack of contentment, bad temper, extreme lust, insistence on anger, following the carnal soul, disagreement with guidance, ignorance, attempting more than one’s tolerance, choosing the wrong instead of right, insistence on sins, belittling the sins, praising one’s own worship, proud of the rich, disparaging the poor, ignoring the inferior, unthankfulness toward the kind, helping the oppressor, leaving the oppressed, etc.

The Messenger of Allah was said:

إنَّ فُلاَنَهَ تَصُومُ النَّهَارَ وَتَقُومُ اللَّیْلَ وَلَکِنَّهَا تُؤذِی جِیرَانَهَا. قَالَ: لاَ خَیْرَ فِیهَا؛ هِیَ مِنْ أهْلِ النّارِ.

There is a woman who fasts on the days and is awake worshipping at nights, but she is bad tempered and annoys her neighbors. He said: She is of no good; her place is in the Hell.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) said:

إنَّ سُوءَ الخُلُقِ لَیُفْسِدُ

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 68/ 394, Bab 92, under the tradition 63.

العَمَلَ کَمَا یُفْسِدُ الخَلُّ العَسَلَ.

Bad temper spoils deeds, as vinegar spoils honey.(1)

Gluttony

Imam ‘Ali (as) has stated:

مَنْ کَثُرَ طَعْمُهُ سَقُمَ بَطْنُهُ وَقَسَا قَلْبُهُ.

The one who is gluttonous has a sick stomach and a hard heart.(2)

مَنْ کَثُرَ أکْلُهُ قَلَّتْ صِحَّتُهُ وَثَقُلَتْ عَلَی نَفْسِهِ مَؤُنَتُهُ.

The one who is gluttonous has weak health and high expenses.(3)

کَثْرَهُ الأکْلِ مِنَ الشَّرَهِ، وَالشَّرَهُ شَرُّ العُیُوبِ.

Gluttony is the result of extreme lust and extreme lust is one of the worst vices.(4)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

لَیْسَ شَیْءٌ أضَرَّ لِقَلْبِ المُؤمِنِ مِنْ کَثْرَهِ الأکْلِ؛ وَهِیَ مُوَرِّثَهٌ لِشَیْئَیْنِ: قَسْوَهُ القَلْبِ وَهَیَجَانُ الشَّهْوَهِ.

Nothing is more harmful for a believing servant’s heart than gluttony; it causes two features; heard heartedness and rebellion of lust.(5)

Excessive Sleep

It is narrated from Imam al-Baqir (as) that Prophet Moses (as) said to Allah: “Which of Your servants do You show more enmity to?” The Almighty answered him:

جِیفَهٌ بِاللَّیْلِ بَطَّالٌ بِالنَّهَارِ.

The one who is in bed like a dead person all night and spends his day uselessly.(6)

The Messenger of Allah (S) has stated that Solomon’s mother told him:

إیَّاکَ وَکَثْرَهَ النَّوْمِ بِاللَّیْلِ؛ تَدَعُ الرَّجُلَ فَقِیراً یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ.

Do not sleep much at nights because it causes man to be resurrected in the Hereafter barehanded.(7)

Imam ‘Ali (as) stated:

بِئْسَ الغَرِیمُ النَّوْمُ؛ یُفْنِی قَصِیرَ العُمُرِ وَیُفَوِّتُ کَثِیرَ الأجْرِ.

Sleeping is a bad enemy; it wastes the short life and eliminates great reward.(8)

By avoiding what Islam has forbidden, like unlawful food, vices, gluttony, and excessive sleep, one’s limbs are granted power to serve Allah and His servants. It is by this strength that the eyes would not see

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/321, Bab Su’ Al-Khulq, tradition 1.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 63/ 338, bab 5, tradition 35.
3- Ghurar al-Hikam: 360, Al-Fasl Al-Rabi’ Al-Batnata wa Athariha, 8168.
4- Ibid: 361/ 8178.
5- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 16/ 211, Bab 1, tradition 19627.
6- Mizan al-Hikmah: 13/ 6550, Al-Nawm, tradition 20917.
7- Khisal: 1/ 28, tradition 99; Mizan al-Hikmah: 13/ 6550, Al-Nawm, tradition 20915.
8- Ghurar al-Hikam: 159, tradition 3030; Mizan al-Hikmah: 13/ 6550, Al-Nawm, tradition 20924.

but the truth and whatever Allah desires; the ears would not hear but the speech of Allah, the Prophets (as), Imams, and the righteous; the tongue would not utter but just and true words; the hands would not perform but honest attempt; the stomach would not eat but lawful food; the lust would not be used but in lawful ways; and the feet would not go but towards divine gatherings, mosques, and holy shrines. In short, all human limbs as well as his soul would move in the direction of worshipping Allah and serving His servants.

Worshipping Allah

The value of worshipping is not completely known to us, who are in the narrowness of this world and we are unaware of many facts before the advent of the Last Day. Worshipping Allah leads to progress, perfection, goodness, prosperity, purified life, and obtaining the Paradise.

The Messenger of Allah (S) has stated about worship:

أفْضَلُ النَّاسِ مَنْ عَشِقَ العِبَادَهَ فَعَانَقَهَا وأحَبَّهَا بِقَلْبِهِ وَبَاشَرَهَا بِجَسَدِهِ وَتَفَرَّغَ لَهَا فَهُوَ لاَ یُبَالِی عَلَی مَا أصْبَحَ مِنَ الدُّنْیَا؛ عَلَی عُسْرٍ أمْ عَلَی یُسْرٍ.

The best man is the one who loves worshipping Allah in his heart, does it by his limbs, and leaves other activities for it, not fearing worldly hardships.(1)

یَقُولُ رَبُّکُمْ: یَا بْنَ آدَمَ! تَفَرَّغْ لِعِبَادَتِی أمْلأْ قَلْبَکَ غِنیً وَأمْلأْ یَدَیْکَ رِزْقاً. یَا بْنَ آدَمَ! لاَ تُبَاعِدْ مِنِّی فَأمْلأُ قَلْبَکَ فَقْراً وَأمْلأُ یَدَیْکَ شُغْلاً.

Your Lord says: O son of Adam! Leave other activities for serving Me so that I would fill your heart with independence and your hands with bountiful

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1- Al-Kafi: 2/ 83, Bab Al-Ibada, tradition 3.

sustenance! O son of Adam! Do not get far from Me otherwise I would fill your heart with need and your hands with engagement!(1)

On his ascension night to the heavens, the Almighty addressed the holy Prophet (S):

یَا أحَمْدُ! لَیْسَ شَیْءٌ مِنَ العِبَادَهِ أحَبَّ إلَیَّ مِنَ الصَّمْتِ وَالصَّوْمِ. مَنْ صَامَ وَلَمْ یَحْفَظْ لِسَانَهُ کَانَ کَمَنْ قَامَ وَلَمْ یَقْرَأ فِی صَلاَتِهِ، فَأعْطِیهِ أجْرَ القِیَامِ وَلَمْ أعْطِهِ أجْرَ العَابِدِینَ. یَا أحْمَدُ! هَلْ تَدْرِی مَتَی یَکُونُ العَبْدُ عَابِداً؟ (قال: لا یا ربّ، قال:) إذَا اجْتَمَعَ فِیهِ سَبْعُ خِصَالٍ: وَرَعٌ یَحْجِزُهُ عَنِ المَحَارِمِ، وَصَمْتٌ یَکُفُّهُ عَمَّا لاَ یَعْنِیهِ، وَخَوْفٌ یَزْدَادُ فِی کُلِّ یَوْمٍ مِنْ بُکَائِهِ، وَحَیَاءٌ یَسْتَحِی مِنِّی فِی الخَلاَءِ، وَأکْلُ مَا لاَ بُدَّ مِنْهُ، وَیُبْغِضُ الدُّنْیَا لِبَغْضِی لَهَا، وَیُحِبُّ الأخْیَارَ لِحُبِّی لَهُمْ.

O Ahmad! Do you know when the man is worshipping Me? He said: No! Allah said: When he has seven features; a piety that prohibits him from the unlawful, a silence that keeps him from saying what is not useful, a fear that increases his weeping from day to day, a humility by which he fears Me in his privacy, an eating and drinking that is necessary for him, an enmity with the world because of My enmity with it, and a love for the righteous because of My love for them.(2)

It has been narrated that the Almighty has stated in some of His Divine Books:

یَا بْنَ آدَمَ! أنَا حَیٌّ لاَ أمُوتُ، أطِعْنِی فِیمَا أمَرْتُ حَتَّی أجْعَلَکَ حَیّاً لاَ تَمُوتُ. یَا بْنَ آدَمَ! أنَا أقُولُ لِلْشَیْءِ ’کُنْ‘ فَیَکُونُ، أطِعْنِی فِیمَا أمَرْتُکَ أجْعَلْکَ تَقُولُ

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1- Kanz Al-Ummal: 43614; Mizan al-Hikmah: 7/ 3412, Al-Ibada, tradition 11608.
2- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 9/19, Bab istihbab Al-Simt, tradition 10085.

لِلْشَیْءِ ’کُنْ‘ فَیَکُونُ.

O son of Adam! I am the Alive One Who does not die, obey what I have ordered you so that I would make you an alive one who would not die. O son of Adam! When I say to something ‘be’ it will become immediately, worship Me so that I would give you the ability to say to things ‘be’ and they would become immediately.(1)

Some facts have been mentioned, in traditions, as the best kinds of worship, which are; knowing Allah and bein humble towards Him, constantly thinking about Allah and His power, saying ‘لا اله الا الله’ (there is no deity but Allah) and ‘لا حول و لا قوه الا بالله’ (there is no power except from Allah), sincerity, chastity, piety, thoughtfulness, observing the rights of the believers, silence, Hajj, fasting, prayer, ignoring the sins, hiding one’s own worship, humility, performing the obligatory deeds, seeking lawful sustenance, lenience in speech, and loving the Household of the Prophet (S).

Serving Allah’s servants

As stated in the divine traditions and other traditions, the believing servant is of so much value that respecting him is considered equal to respecting Allah and disrespecting him is as disrespecting Allah.

The Messenger of Allah (S) has narrated from Gabriel (as) from the Almighty:

مَنْ أهَانَ لِی وَلِیّاً فَقَدْ بَارَزَنِی بِالمُحَارَبَهِ.

Anyone who disrespects My friend and My favorite servant has indeed rose to fight Me.(2)

That’s why serving the believing servants is like worshipping Allah, because serving the believer is, in fact, serving Allah.

The Messenger of Allah (S) said:

مَنْ قَضَی

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1- Mustadrak al-Wasa’il: 11/ 258, Bab Wujub Ta’at Allah, tradition 12928.
2- Bihar al-Anwar: 67/ 16, bab 43, tradition 8.

لأخِیهِ المُؤْمِنِ حَاجَهً کَانَ کَمَنْ عَبَدَ اللهَ دَهْرَهُ.

One who fulfills a request of his religious brother is like one who has worshipped Allah all his lifetime.(1)

Imam Sadiq (as) stated:

مَنْ قَضَی لأخِیهِ المُؤمِنِ حَاجَهً قَضَی اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ لَهُ یَوْمَ القِیَامَهِ مِائَهَ ألْفِ حَاجَهً مِنْ ذَلِکَ، أوَّلُهَا الجَنَّهُ.

If one fulfills an exegesis of his religious brother, Allah would fulfill a hundred thousand of his exegeses, the first of which is granting the Paradise.(2)

إنَّ العَبْدَ لَیَمْشِی فِی حَاجَهِ أخِیهِ المُؤمِنِ فَیُوَکِّلُ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ بِهِ مَلَکَیْنِ: وَاحِدٌ عَنْ یَمِینِهِ وَآخَرُ عَنْ شِمَالِهِ، یَسْتَغْفِرَانِ لَهُ رَبَّهُ وَیَدْعُوَانِ لَهُ بِقَضَاءِ حَاجَتِهِ.

Surely the servant moves to fulfill his believer brother’s wish, so Allah sets two angels for him, one on his right and the other on his left. The two angels ask Allah to forgive him and pray for the fulfillment of his own exegesis.(3)

Imam al-Baqir (as) said that the Prophet (S) was asked: “What deed is the most favorable to Allah?” He answered: “Making a Muslim happy.” He was then asked: “What is making a Muslim happy?” He replied: “It is feeding him, removing his sadness, and paying his debt.”(4)

Imam Sadiq (as) has narrated from the Almighty:

الخَلْقُ عِیَالِی؛ فَأحَبُّهُمْ إلَیَّ ألْطَفُهُمْ بِهِمْ وَأسْعَاهُمْ فِی حَوَائِجِهِمْ.

All the people are fed by Me; the best of them is the kindest one to the others and the one who tries hard to fulfill other’s wishes.(5)

After asking Allah for the strength of the limbs for serving the people, Amir al-Mu’minin (as) asks Allah determination in this service and

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1- Amali Tusi: 481, tradition 1051; Mizan al-Hikmah: 3/ 1318, Al-Haja, tradition 4461.
2- Al-Kafi: 2/ 192, Bab Qaza’ Hajat Al-Mu’min, tradition 1.
3- Wasa’il Al-Shi’ah: 16/ 359, Bab Istihbab Qaza’ hajat Al-Mu’min, tradition 21758.
4- Mizan al-Hikmah: 2/ 952, Al-Mahabba 2, tradition 3126.
5- Al-Kafi: 2/ 199, Bab Sa’I fi Hajat Al-Mu’min, tradition 10.

continuity of being joined to His service, to the point that he would be the first to move toward Allah in the battlefields, hurry to Allah from among the prominent, desire His proximity, move near to Him like the sincere, fear Him with the fear of the faithful, and gather with the believers for His nearness.

Certainty

The great philosopher and knowledgeable author of the ‘al-Mizan’ exegesis of the Holy Qur'an, the late ‘Allamah Tabataba’i has defined certainty: Certainty is knowledge with no fault or doubt.(1) (For example we know definitely that it is the day in the morning and in darkness of night we definitely know that it is the night and we also know that we are alive beings with characteristics and signs.)

There are three degrees for certainty; ‘ilm al-yaqin (known certainty), ‘ayn al-yaqin (exact certainty), and haqq al-yaqin (true certainty). The difference among these three kinds of certainty becomes clear with an example; known certainty of fire is gained by seeing the smoke from behind a wall; exact certainty is acquired by seeing the fire itself; and true certainty is achieved by being burned by the fire. The Messenger of Allah (S) says:

عَلاَمَهُ المُوقِنِ سِتَّهٌ: أیْقَنَ بِاللهِ حَقّاً فَآمَنَ بِهِ، وَأیْقَنَ بِأنَّ المَوْتَ حَقٌّ فَحَذِرَهُ، وَأیْقَنَ بِأنَّ البَعْثَ حَقٌّ فَخَافَ الفَضِیحَهَ، وَأیْقَنَ بِأنَّ الجَنَّهَ حَقٌّ فَاشْتَاقَ إلَیْهَا، وَأیْقَنَ بِأنَّ النَّارَ حَقٌّ فَظَهَرَ سَعْیُهُ لِلنَّجَاهِ مِنْهَا، وَأیْقَنَ بِأنَّ الحِسَابَ حَقٌّ فَحَاسَبَ نَفْسَهُ.

The believers have six characteristics; they have certainty in Allah; a true certainty, so they have faith through this

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1- al-Mizan: 19/ 140.

certainty; they have certainty in the reality of death, so they avoid its consequences including disgrace in the Hereafter; they have certainty in the reality of Paradise, so they are eager for it; they have certainty in the Hell, so they try to escape it; and they have certainty in the accounting of the Last Day so they account for their own deeds not to be accounted for then.(1)

The three degrees of certainty can be obtained via the Qur’anic verses and the traditions of Prophet’s Household (as). Someone who does not reach certainty through these ways would not reach certainty at all.

For getting certainty through Qur’an, first we should ponder in its verses to make sure of their truth and the reason of their revelation. The Holy Qur’an itself reads:

وَإِنْ کُنتُمْ فِی رَیْبٍ مِمَّا نَزَّلْنَا عَلَی عَبْدِنَا فَأْتُوا بِسُورَهٍ مِنْ مِثْلِهِ.

And if you are in doubt as to that what We have revealed to Our servants, then produce a chapter like it. (2:23)

قُلْ لَئِنْ اجْتَمَعَتْ الْإِنسُ وَالْجِنُّ عَلَی أَنْ یَأْتُوا بِمِثْلِ هَذَا الْقُرْآنِ لا یَأْتُونَ بِمِثْلِهِ وَلَوْ کَانَ بَعْضُهُمْ لِبَعْضٍ ظَهِیرًا.

Say if men and jinn should combine together to bring the like of this Qur’an, they could not bring the like of it, though some of them were aides of others. (17:88)

In view of these two holy verses, one can make sure that the Qur’an is revealed from Allah, and then make sure of all its contents. Likewise, one can reach certainty about the teachings of Imams (as), which

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1- Tuhaf al-’Uqul: 20.

are explanations of Qur’anic verses, and finally join the righteous faithful servants.

اللّهُمَّ وَمَنْ أَرادَنی بِسُوء فَأَرِدْهُ وَمَنْ کادَنی فَکِدْهُ، وَاجْعَلْنی مِنْ أَحْسَنِ عَبیدِکَ نَصیباً عِنْدَکَ، وَأَقْرَبِهِمْ مَنْزِلَهً مِنْکَ، وَأَخَصِّهِمْ زُلْفَهً لَدَیْکَ، فَإِنَّهُ لا یُنالُ ذلِکَ إلاّ بِفَضْلِکَ، وَجُدْ لی بِجُودِکَ وَاعْطِفْ عَلَیَّ بِمَجْدِکَ وَاحْفَظْنی بِرَحْمَتِکَ

O Allah! Whoever desires evil for me- desire it for him! And whoever deceives me- deceive him! And make me one of the most excellent of Your slaves who share the best reward from You, the nearest of them in station to You and the most elect of them in proximity to You. For that cannot be attained except by Your Bounty. Grant generously to me through Your Munificence, incline toward me with Your splendor and protect me with Your Mercy!

The enemies that desire evil for humans are Satan, the carnal soul, and an evil friend, that deceives him. The temptation and deceiving power of these dangerous enemies is so strong that Amir al-Mu’minin (as) seeks Allah’s assistance for fighting them. There were detailed discussions on Satan, the carnal soul, and evil friends in previous parts of the book.

If one wants to be the most excellent, the nearest, and the most elevated servant of Allah, he should have faith together with certainty, an acceptable sincerity, valuable deeds, righteous morality, especially piety, to keep him from wrongdoing. Isn’t it that the Holy Qur’an states:

إِنَّ أَکْرَمَکُمْ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ أَتْقَاکُمْ.

Surely the most honorable of you with Allah is the one among you most pious. (13:49)

Piety, which is the base

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of human prosperity in the world and the Last Day, has three stages; general, special, and the most special. The general piety is doing the obligatory deeds and avoiding the unlawful ones. The special piety is avoiding the undesirable deeds as well as the permissible deeds to the greatest extent possible. Finally, the most special piety is avoiding anything that prevents the heart from Allah’s remembrance.

Khajah Nizham al-Mulk and the Pious Man

It is cited in historical books about the life of Khajah that one day he met a pious servant of Allah. He told the pious man: “Ask me something so that I may give it to you! Because you are in need and I am needless.” The pious man said: “I want Allah and nothing except Him, because asking from anyone except Allah will be below the standards. How can I ask this from you then?” Khajah said: “If you do not ask me anything, let me ask you something.” The pious man asked: “What is it?” Khajah replied: “When you remember Allah in your prayers, remember me too.” The pious man said: “When I have the blessing of remembering Allah, I forget my own self, how can I remember you?”(1)

O the One Who possesses Greatness, Honor, Splendor, and Glory! All these divine attributes necessitate Mercy towards others, and Mercy necessitates Forgiveness. So be inclined towards me with Your splendor, so that You would have Mercy towards me, thus finally making this poor servant of Yours needless!

Ahmad Khadhrawayh and the Thief

Those people who have virtuous morality treat everyone by

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1- Nafahat al-Layl: 230.

it. Their behavior is in fact an example of the behavior of the Almighty to His servants.

It is narrated that a thief broke into the house of Ahmad Khadhrawayh, but found nothing much valuable there. He wanted to leave the house when the generous Ahmad prevented him. Ahmad called the thief: “I wouldn’t like it if you left my house empty handed! Take a bucket of water from that well, perform ghusl (ritual bath), then perform wuzu’ (statuary ablution), and begin praying, repenting, and asking for forgiveness. Till then something would have been prepared for you so that you may not return home empty handed. As the sun rose, a noble man brought a hundred gold coins for Ahmad, as a gift. He gave the coins to the thief and said: “This is the superficial reward of a night of sincere worship.” The thief was greatly impressed, repented from all his sins, and turned to the Almighty.

وَاجْعَلْ لِسانی بِذِکْرِکَ لَهِجَاً وَقَلْبی بِحُبِّکَ مُتَیَّماً وَمُنَّ عَلَیَّ بِحُسْنِ إِجابَتِکَ، وَأَقِلْنی عَثْرَتی وَاغْفِرْ زَلَّتی، فَإِنَّکَ قَضَیْتَ عَلی عِبادِکَ بِعِبادَتِکَ، وَأَمَرْتَهُمْ بِدُعائِکَ، وَضَمِنْتَ لَهُمُ الاِْجابَهَ، فَإِلَیْکَ یا رَبِّ نَصَبْتُ وَجْهی وَإِلَیْکَ یا رَبِّ مَدَدْتُ یَدی، فَبِعِزَّتِکَ اسْتَجِبْ لی دُعائی وَبَلِّغْنی مُنایَ وَلا تَقْطَعْ مِنْ فَضْلِکَ رَجائی، وَاکْفِنی شَرَّ الْجِنِّ وَالاِْنْسِ مِنْ أَعْدائی

And Make my tongue remember You constantly and my heart enthralled by Your love! Be gracious to me by answering me favorably, nullify my slips and forgive my lapses! For You have decreed Your worship for Your servants, commanded them to supplicate You

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and assured them that they would be answered. So toward You, my Lord, I have turned my face; and toward You, my Lord, I have extended my hand. So by Your Might, comply with my supplication and make me attain my desires! Do not, if it pleases You, sever my hopes, and spare me the evil of my enemies from among the jinn and men!

The Tongue

One of the greatest blessings of Allah to human beings is the tongue, by which he can talk, express whatever he thinks, and declare his goals and viewpoints.

Just as its virtue and goodness are great, the tongue’s vices are heavy. The wise men have said about this organ: “The weight of the tongue is little, but its sin is great.”

As the great narrator, philosopher, and ascetic scholar has said, the tongue can commit nearly twenty major sins, such as backbiting, accusation, tale telling, ridiculing, spreading rumor, telling lies, using abusive language, belittling others, etc.(1)

The Holy Qur’an has permitted only ten types of speaking. If one uses his tongue in one of these ten ways, it is as if he has worshipped Allah. If, on the other hand, he uses it in ways other than these, he has polluted his tongue with sin and, in fact, has worshipped Satan. They are 1. Good speaking, 2. Better speaking, 3. Just speaking, 4. Honorable mention, 5. Generous speaking, 6. Gentle speaking, 7. Speaking of belief, 8. Right speaking, 9. Honest advice and 10. Effectual speaking.

Good speaking is speaking to

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1- Mahajjat Al-Bayza’: 6/ 190, Kitab Afat Al-Lisan.

people with good temper. (2:83) Better speaking is inviting people to Allah. (41:33) Just speaking is giving testimony in a court of law. (6:152) Honorable mention is speaking well of the latest generations of the believers. (26:84) Generous speaking is speaking well to one’s parents. (17:23) Gentle speaking is speaking for enjoining good and forbidding evil. (20:43) Speaking of belief is confessing to Allah’s Unity and the prophethood of His messenger. (2:136) Right speaking is speaking truthfully in every circumstance. (94:9) Honest advice is speaking to the orphans and one’s family. (40:5) Effectual speaking is influential speaking consisted of advice, logic, and wise speech. (4:63)

Benefiting from these ten ways of speech, one can begin a business whose profit is known by no one but Allah. A complete explanation of these ten methods requires a separate book. Here we only explain about the reward of better speech that is guiding and inviting people to Allah.

When sending Amir al-Mu’minin (as) for guiding the people of Yemen, the Messenger of Allah (S) told him:

یَا عَلِیُّ! لاَ تُقَاتِلْ أحَداً حَتَّی تَدْعُوهُ. وَأیْمُ اللهِ لَئِنْ یَهْدِی اللهُ عَلَی یَدِکَ رَجُلاً خَیْرٌ لَکَ مِمَّا طَلَعَتْ عَلَیْهِ الشَّمْسُ وَغَرَبَتْ.

O ‘Ali! Do not fight anyone before you invite him to the truth. By Allah, if you guide someone to Allah, it is better for you than all the things above which the sun shines and sets.(1)

Performing prayers is remembering Allah; reciting Qur’an is remembering Allah; specific supplications recommended by the Imams (as) for certain times and places are

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1- Al-Kafi: 5/ 28, Bab Wasiyata Rasul Allah s.a, tradition 4.

remembering Allah; speaking in accord with the methods cited in the Holy Qur’an is remembering Allah; but above all, using the tongue for guiding people to Allah is the greatest and most valuable remembrance of Allah.

Forgiveness of the Prostitute Woman

Thiqat Al-Islam Kulayni in the final section of his valuable book ‘Rawdhat al-Kafi’ has narrated from Imam Sadiq (as) that a pious man defeated Satan’s temptations after a lot of worship. So Satan called his army and told them: “Which of you can get this pious man out of the worshippers’ circle?” Every one of them mentioned his trick but none was accepted. One of them said: “I will deceive him by prayers.” Satan liked his idea of deceit and appointed him as the agent for misguiding the mentioned pious man!

Satan’s agent went to the pious man’s temple and began worshipping very eagerly. He was much engaged in enthusiastic worship that the pious man could not ask him the reason for his rare willed worship. When he finally asked the reason from the agent, he answered: “I have committed a sin and now I am regretful. My regretfullness has set me into eager worshipping, without getting tired!” The pious man wanted to experience the same state of worshipping after regret from a sin! And he did not even think of the consequences if he would die while committing the sin and could not regret and repent! So he asked Satan’s agent to help him. The agent recommended for him to do adultery with a famous

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prostitute woman. The pious man rushed to her. The woman was astonished at seeing the pious man, with his divine countenance, in that ignominious quarter of the city and thought that he has been deceived. So she told him: “One can never reach the position of nearness by wrongdoing. The one who has encouraged you to do so, has intended to deceive and misguide you. Committing sins brings human down, and does not promote him. Now turn back to your temple, and if you do not find your encourager, know for certain that he has been Satan!”

Awakened, the pious man returned but did not see the evil agent there anymore. He was very grateful to the woman who had saved him from engaging in wrongdoing. On the other hand, the woman passed away on that very night. The Almighty addressed the prophet of that age: “Accompany other people in burying her body; I forgave all her sins because she guided one of My servants!”

Guarantee of Acceptance of Prayer

The Holy Qur’an has stated:

وَإِذَا سَأَلَکَ عِبَادِی عَنِّی فَإِنِّی قَرِیبٌ أُجِیبُ دَعْوَهَ الدَّاعِی إِذَا دَعَانِِ.

And when My servants ask you concerning Me, then I am near, I answer the prayer of the supplicant when he calls on Me. (2:186)

وَقَالَ رَبُّکُمْ ادْعُونِی أَسْتَجِبْ لَکُمْ.

And your Lord says: Call upon Me, I will answer you. (40:60)

However, it should be kept in mind that not any prayer is being guaranteed to be accepted; rather only that prayer of a supplicant whose features are mentioned in the Holy Qur’an and the

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traditions.

Someone might call upon Allah weepingly and ask Him all the world’s wealth, kingdom over the world, an everlasting life, a beauty more than that of Josef’s, a voice sweeter than that of David’s, or bravery more than that of Imam ‘Ali (as). He might even ask Allah to fulfill any good or evil prayer he says about other people!

Such supplications are void of necessary conditions so they are not guaranteed to be accepted by the Almighty. The knowing, righteous, and loving servants have the necessary conditions and their prayers are based on the goodness of this world and the Hereafter. If their prayer is answered in the world, they thank Allah, and if it is not answered here, they do not become upset; rather they are patient and wait until the suitable time for the acceptance of their prayer.

It has been narrated that prayer is the weapon of the prophets (as) and the believer. Prayer changes a strong inescapable fate, removes calamities, and cures diseases.

The necessary conditions for the acceptance of prayers have been mentioned in the Imam’s traditions as: sincerity in deeds, knowing that everything is in Allah’s Hands, performing the obligatory deeds, having a purified heart, telling the truth, eating lawful meals, paying people’s rights, presence and tenderness of the heart, beginning the prayer with ‘bismillahir-rahmanir-rahim (In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful),’ confessing to the sins, beseeching and weeping, putting one’s face unto the ground, performing two units of prayer, having certainty of

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acceptance, praying for others before oneself, avoiding indecent prayers, praying among a congregation, praying in privacy, and having hope of the acceptance of prayer.

If the supplication and the supplicant have the necessary conditions the prayer would most surely be answered.

Prayer of the Entangled

Jabir al-Ju’fi, a reliable tradition narrator in the time of Imam al-Baqir and Imam Sadiq (as) narrates from the Prophet (S) that three travelers reached a mountain while traveling. They saw a cave on top of the mountain, entered it and began worshipping. Suddenly a piece of rock fell down the mountain and blocked the entrance of the cave, in such a way as if it had been made to fit like a door.

The travelers told each other: “By Allah that there is no way out, unless we represent to Allah some of our righteous, sincere deeds or avoiding a sin.”

The first one said: “O Allah! You know better than anyone else that I went to a beautiful woman and gave her a lot of money, but when I came near her I remembered the Fire and left her alone. Solve our problem for this and show us a way out!” So part of the rock was removed.

The second one said: “O Allah! I hired some workers in my farm and set a wage of half a drachma for every one of them. At the end of the day, one of them came to me and said: ‘I have worked as much as two workers. Give me one drachma!’ I

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refused to do so and he went away. Then I planted some seeds as much as a drachma in a corner of my farm and they grew abundantly. One day that worker came to me again and asked for his wage. I gave him eighteen thousand drachmas for that was the benefit of some years of farming with that little amount of seed. I did it only for Your sake, so rescue us!” Therefore, the rock moved a little more.

The third person said: “O Allah! One night my parents were sleeping when I brought a bowl of milk for them. I did not wake them up and did not put the bowl down so that they do not wake up. I held the bowl until they woke up intentionally. You know I tolerated that pain for Your sake, so rescue us!” The rock, then, moved away completely and the three of them escaped the cave in safely.(1)

Prayer of the Black Slave

It is narrated that the Israelites were affected by famine for seven years. Seventy thousand of them went to a desert to pray for rain. There came a divine address: “O Moses! Say to them: ‘How should I accept your prayer while your sins have embraced you and your hearts are covered with evil? Do you call upon Me while you do not believe in Me. Go to one of My servants named Burkh so that he would ask Me, and I would accept it.’”

Moses looked for Burkh but could not find him. One

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1- Nur Al-Thaqalayn: 3/ 249.

day he was passing a place where he saw a black slave on whose forehead was the sign of prostitution and who had hung something on his neck. Moses (as) thought that he was Burkh so asked him of his name. He answered: “I am Burkh.” Moses (as) said: “I have been looking for you for a while. Pray for rain!” Burkh went to the desert and said in his prayers: “O Allah! Withholding the rain from your servants is below Your dignity; there is no stinginess in Your presence; is it that Your Mercy is weakened; or that the winds has disobeyed You; or Your resources have terminated; or Your wrath to the sinners has increased; were You not the Forgiver before creating the sinners?!” He had not even moved from his place when it started to rain to that extent that all the Israelites’ thirst was quenched.(1)

Prayer of Imam al-Sajjad’s Slave

Sa’id Ibn Musayyib was one of the scholars of Medina and was praised by Imam al-Sajjad (as) and Imam Musa Ibn Ja’far (as).

‘Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan sent a deputy to Medina to ask Sa’id’s beautiful and knowledgeable daughter to marry him. Sa’id told the deputy: “I don’t want my daughter to marry the ruler of the country!”

One day Sa’id said to one of his students: “Why have you been absent from the class for several days?” He answered: “My wife had passed away so I was busy and could not come.” Sa’id told him: “Take a wife for yourself!” The cleric student

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1- Anis al-Layl: 453.

said: “I have nothing except two drachmas.” So Sa’id told him: “Do you want to marry my daughter?” He answered: “As you wish!” So Sa’id made his daughter the wife of his student.

For forty years, Sa’id had not gone to anyone’s home. His student says: “That night Sa’id Ibn Musayyib came to my house along with his daughter. He left her with me and went.” I asked her daughter: “What do you have?” She said: “I know the Qur’an by heart.” I asked her again: “What do you want as your marriage portion?” She replied: “A tradition suffices me.” So I told her this tradition:

جِهَادُ المَرْأهِ حُسْنُ التَّبَعُّلِ.

A woman’s Jihad is performing her duties to her husband.(1)

This pious, righteous, and sincere Sa’id Ibn Musayyib says: There was once an extreme famine in Medina. People went to the desert to pray for rain and I went with them too, but I saw no one worthy of being accepted by Allah from among them. I saw a black slave who had put his face on the earth beside a hill and was praying. His prayer was accepted and it rained a lot. Then I followed him to see that he went to Imam Al-Sajjad’s house. I asked Imam (as) to give him to me. Imam Zayn Al-Abidin (as) presented all his servants but the mentioned one was not among them. I found out that there is another servant in the stable. So Imam told him: “I have given you to Sa’id.” The

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1- Al-Kafi: 5/9, Bab Jihad Al-Rajul wa Al-Mir’at, tradition 1.

servant wept excessively and told me: “O Sa’id! Do not separate me from Imam!” Seeing this, I left him and exited Imam’s home. After I left, the servant, whose secret of being pious had been disclosed, put his head on the ground and asked Allah for his death which was accepted at once. Imam Al-Sajjad (as) sent for me to take part in the servant’s funeral!

Imam al-Husayn’s Prayer

It is narrated in “Manaqib” of Ibn Shahr ªshub from the worthy book “Tahdhib” of Shaykh Tusi that a woman was circumambulating around the Kaaba and a man was in the same row. The man stretched his hand toward the woman with an evil intention when suddenly his hand got stuck firmly to the woman’s body. As a result, both of them stopped their circumambulation. The law forces brought them to Mecca’s governor and he called on the jurisprudents to issue a verdict in this odd case. All of them ordered to cut the man’s hand because of the great sin he had committed beside the Kaaba. Then someone suggested asking the opinion of Imam Husayn (as), before cutting the sinner’s hand. Imam Husayn (as) came towards Kaa’ba and began beseeching to the Almighty until the man’s hand was separated from the woman’s body. Then Imam (as) was asked: “Should the sinner be penalized?” Imam (as) stated: “Why should you punish him while Allah has forgiven him?!”(1)

Nightly Prayer of the Prisoner

In the ruling period of ‘Abdullah Ibn Tahir, some roads got unsafe for the people and the caravans. ‘Abdullah

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1- Manaqib Ibn Shahr Ashub: 4/ 51.

appointed a group of soldiers to guard the roads. One day ten thieves were arrested from one of the roads. They were sent to the government headquarters, but one of them escaped in the darkness of night. The head of the guards thought that ‘Abdullah Ibn Tahir might punish him for the escaping of the prisoner. Therefore he arrested an innocent cotton-carder who was going to another city to work, to present the right number of prisoners. The ten captives were brought to ‘Abdullah who ordered to imprison them all.

One night, two of the prisoners, including the innocent cotton-carder, were chosen to be executed. The innocent prisoner thought: “My children think that I am working in another city and don’t know that an oppressive governor has seized me unjustly.” In the middle of the night, he performed two units of prayer, and then he put his head one earth and prayed to the Almighty.

On the same night, ‘Abdullah Ibn Tahir dreamed that four strong black snakes had attacked him and his government had collapsed. He was startled from his sleep, called the soldiers, and said: “An oppressed one is beseeching to Allah at this time of the night.” After much search, they entered the prison and the saw cotton-carder in the strange state that he was. They brought him to the ruler. When everything was clear, the ruler ordered to give the innocent prisoner ten thousand gold coins. Then he told the cotton-carder: “I have three requests from you; forgive

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me, accept this gift from me, and come to me whenever you had a request.”

The cotton-carder said: “I accept two of your three requests; I forgave you and accepted your gift, but not the third one. Because it is ungrateful to leave the Lord who collapsed your government for my prayer, and come to the presence of one of His weak creatures!”

O Lord! I wish You forgive my sins, help me avoid sins in the future, prepare the conditions for my sincere worship, use my limbs in serving You and Your servants, fill my heart with Your love, cure my mental and physical illnesses, and grant me the intercession and accompaniment of Your favorite servants in the Hereafter. This is my wish, my Lord! Do not despair me of your Mercy and Blessings!

It is narrated that Messenger of Allah (S) told a person who was approaching death: “How do you see your state?” He said: “I fear my sins and hope for Allah’s Mercy.” The Prophet (S) said: “No one thinks this way except that Allah saves him from what he fears and grants him what he hopes for.”

O Lord! My hope and my wish are not in vein. You have called Yourself, in the Holy Qur’an, the Forgiver, the Generous, the Acknowledger of gratitude, and the most Merciful of the Merciful. While I am afraid of the excess of my sins, I am quite hopeful of You. If I have come to Your presence with du’a’ kumayl, Your own

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Mercy has made me come toward You. I know for certain that no beggar returns empty-handed from Your presence; no hopeful becomes hopeless, and no one is rejected. O Lord! You accepted and forgave Hurr Ibn Ziyad, with his great sin, Asiya, after her belief, Fudhayl Ayyaz, after his repentance, as well as thousands of other sinners and You rewarded them all. How can I be hopeless, while You have considered hopelessness of Your Mercy as disbelief, in Your Qur’an?!

وَلاَ تَیْئَسُوا مِنْ رَوْحِ اللَّهِ إِنَّهُ لاَ یَیْئَسُ مِنْ رَوْحِ اللَّهِ إِلاَّ الْقَوْمُ الکَافِرُونَ.

And despair not of Allah’s Mercy; surely none despairs of Allah’s Mercy except the unbelieving people. (12:87)

Rain of Mercy

Imam Sadiq (as) has narrated from his father and from his grandfather: People of Kufah came to Amir al-Mu’minin (as), complaining for lack of rain and famine and asked him: “Call upon Allah to send us rain!” Amir al-Mu’minin (as) told Imam Husayn (as): “Ask Allah for rain!” Imam Husayn (as) praised Allah and His Messenger (S) and called upon Allah: “O the bestower of blessings and descender of rain! Send bountiful rain for us to save Your servants from inability, and revitalize dead lands! Amen! O Lord of the worlds!”

When his prayer finished, it rained heavily. An Arab came from another region of Kufah and said: “I saw so much water in hills and valleys that it was as if the water waved!”(1)

O Allah! You Satisfied the thirst of the people of Kufah with the prayer of Your sincere servant; Grant

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1- Bihar al-Anwar: 44/ 187, Bab 25, tradition 16.

the rain of Your Mercy to clear the sins from our Book of Deeds; save us from the chastisement of our sins; grow the plant of joyful worship in us; surely we have come to You with hope of Your Mercy, to apologize and to ask You, and we know that You would certainly forgive us.

Hope of Mercy

A young man was passing an alley when he saw a bird on a tree branch. He shot an arrow towards it but it hit the son of the garden’s owner and killed him. Some innocent passers-by were arrested from around the garden, for the crime. The young man came to the garden and asked: “What’s the matter?” He was answered: “Someone has shot this boy with an arrow.” The young man said: “Bring me the arrow so that I may tell you.” Then he said: “I threw this arrow for hunting but it hit this boy. I am the murderer.” The boy’s father said: “I know you did it accidentally, young man! But why did you confess to your fault?” The young man answered: “In hope of your mercy; so that you would forgive me because of my confession.” So the father forgave him(1).

O the most Generous of the generous! We now confess to all our sins so that You would forgive us by Your indefinite Mercy.

یا سَریعَ الرِّضا إِغْفِرْ لِمَنْ لا یَمْلِکُ إلاّ الدُّعاءَ فَإِنَّکَ فَعّالٌ لِما تَشاءُ، یا مَنِ اسْمُهُ دَواءٌ وَذِکْرُهُ شِفاءٌ وَطاعَتُهُ غِنیً، إِرْحَمْ مَنْ رَأْسُ مالِهِ الرَّجاءُ وَسِلاحُهُ الْبُکاءُ،

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1- Rawdhat al-Mudhnibin: 170.

یا سابِغَ النِّعَمِ، یا دافِعَ النِّقَمِ، یا نُورَ الْمُسْتَوْحِشینَ فِی الظُّلَمِ، یا عالِماً لا یُعَلَّمُ، صَلِّ عَلی مُحَمَّد وَآلِ مُحَمَّد وَافْعَلْ بی ما أَنْتَ أَهْلُهُ وَصَلَّی اللهُ عَلی رَسُولِهِ وَالاَْئِمَّهِ الْمَیامینَ مِنْ آلِهِ وَسَلَّمَ تَسْلیماً کَثیراً

O He whose pleasure is quickly achieved! Forgive him who owns nothing but supplication, for You do what You will. O He whose Name is a remedy, whose remembrance is a Cure, and whose obedience is Wealth! Have mercy upon him whose capital is hope and whose weapon is tears! O Fountain of blessings! O Repeller of adversities! O Light of those who are lonely in darkness! O Knower who was never taught! Bless Muhammad and his progeny and do with me what is worthy of You! And Allah bless His messenger and Holy Imams of his progeny and give them abundant peace!

Divine Truth and Minute Points

Allah’s pleasure is quickly achieved by a servant who is under His wrath, due to wrongdoing, and has resorted to beseeching and repentance, because Allah’s Mercy, Love, and Generosity is infinite. That’s why someone who has committed sins for years without any lapses, is forgiven by only a moment of repentance and regret and his few deeds are accepted and attended to!

Therefore, Amir al-Mu’minin (as), after the divine phrase, “O He whose pleasure is quickly achieved!” states: Forgive him, who owns nothing but supplication, because a real sincere supplication implies the supplicant’s poverty and meanness, and that he owns no means of worship, obedience, or good deeds for being forgiven; that he owns

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no benefit or loss; he cannot remove any evil or gain any good. The supplicant has not come to Allah’s Presence but with Your assistance and Mercy. If Your Mercy had not attracted him, the supplicant could not utter the supplicating phrases, and weep for some moments.

Such a servant is of course worthy of Your Mercy and Benevolence. He should call upon You: “The Generous does not ask a poor servant about what he has brought, rather He asks about what he wants. You have said that if the servant comes one step towards Me, I would take ten steps towards him. My Lord! I am so neeful and disabled that I cannot come towards You even as much as one step. You take a step towards me so that I would get free of satanic desires and carnal soul and get subjected to Your Mercy.”

O the most Generous of the Generous! It’s said that Amir al-Mu’minin (as) wrote on the burial shroud of Salman: “I came in the presence of Generous One with no provisions and no healthy heart, because coming to the Generous One with provisions is the worst thing.”(1)

O Lord! I am a poor servant who is coming to You, not bringing anything worthy of Your Presence. Have Mercy upon me until all my sins are pardoned, my body is forbidden from the Fire, my path is opened to the Paradise, and I reach the peak of prosperity, that is Your pleasure.

O the Holy Being, You do

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1- Anis al-Layl: 530.

what You will out of Your expediency, justice, mercy, and wisdom and no one can oppose it.

About the fact that Allah’s Name is a Remedy, the ascetic and righteous servants have mentioned some points. Some of them say that this Name means the same recorded names which have various benefits and impressions. One of their advantages is that when the supplicant calls his Lord with His special Names, He would answer the supplicant.

وَلِلَّهِ الأَسْمَاءُ الْحُسْنَی فَادْعُوهُ بِهَا.

And Allah's are the best names, therefore call on Him thereby. (7:180)

When the poor servant raises his hands to the Lord, hoping for His attention, and calls with a painful heart and sincere tongue, among the people or in his own privacy: “O Allah!”, “O the Merciful!”, “O the Generous!”, “O Lord!”, and “O the most merciful of the merciful!”, it is way too impossible from a Generous Hearer not to respond him.

The traditions state that Allah’s Names are equal with an infallible Imam or a perfect human that is the manifestation of the meaning and concept of the Names. If, anyone with a pain resorts to them and would be healed.

In fact by resorting to the perfect individuals one can get perfection and prosperity and be saved from disbelief, moral and practical vices.

A perfect human is, in reality, Allah’s Exalted Name that is the center of the world, just as it is stated about the twelfth Imam, al-Hujjah Ibn al-Hasan (as):

وَهُوَ الَّذِی بِبَقَائِهِ بَقِیَتِ الدُّنْیَا، وَبِیُمْنِهِ رُزِقَ الوَرَی، وَبِوُجُودِهِ ثَبَتَتِ الأرْضُ وَالسَّمَاءُ.

The existence

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of the world is related to his existence, humans obtain their sustenance by his blessing, and the stability of the heavens and the earth is based on him.

Consequently, the lover is familiar with the beloved’s name and goes to His presence referring to this Name. He cures his pains by His Mercy and nothing in the world is sweeter than saying His Name and hearing it.

It has been narrated that Prophet Jesus (as) had many sheep. A group of angels thought that his love for the Almighty is related to his love for his wealth. So for making them aware of the truth, the Almighty sent Gabriel to go on top of a hill and call: “subbuhun quddusun rabbu al-mala’ikati warruhi (Glorious and Holy is the Lord of the angels and the spirit!)” Hearing this, Jesus (as) got restless and ran to the top of the hill in search of the caller, but found no one. So he said: “O the nice caller! If you utter the name of my beloved once more, I will grant you half of my sheep!” Gabriel called Allah’s Name once again. Prophet Jesus was eagerly impatient and when he returned to his normal state, cried out: “Call Allah’s Name once more so that I would give you all my sheep!” Gabriel did so again. Then Jesus (as) cried and said: “I have nothing left to sacrifice for His Name, so come and take my life!”

O the beloved Lord! Have Mercy upon the one whose

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capital is hope and whose weapon is tears, so that he would be rescued by Your Mercy from all poverty, Your Name and remembrance be the cure for his pains, and Your worship and obedience make him rich.

O Allah! O Lord! O Generous! O Beloved! O the most Honorable of the honorable! O the most Merciful of the merciful! O Fountain of blessings! O Repeller of adversities! O Light of those who are lonely in the darkness! O Knower Who was never taught! Bless Muhammad and his progeny!

Complete text of Du’a’ Kumayl in Arabic with Trasliteration and English Translation

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِیمِ

bis-millahir-rahmanir-rahim

In the Name of Allah, the All-merciful, the All-compassionate

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّی أَسْألُکَ بِرَحْمَتِکَ الَّتِی وَسِعَتْ کُلَّ شَیٍْء

allahumma in-ni as-aluka bi-rah-matikal-lati wasi’at kul-la shay

O Allah, I ask You by Your mercy, which embraces all things;

وَبِقُوَّتِکَ الَّتِی قَهَرْتَ بِهَا کُلَّ شَیٍْء

wa bi-qu-watikal-lati qahar-ta biha kul-la shay

And by Your strength, through which You dominate all things,

وَخَضَعَ لَهَا کُلُّ شَیٍْء

wa khadha’a laha kul-lu shay

And toward which all things are humble

وَذَلَّ لَهَا کُلُّ شَیٍْء

wa dhal-la laha kul-lu shay

And before which all things are ordinary;

وَبِجَبرُوتِکَ الَّتِی غَلَبْتَ بِهَا کُلَّ شَیٍْء

wa bi-jabarutikal-lati ghalab-ta biha kul-la shay

And by Your invincibility through which You overwhelmest all things,

وَبِعِزَّتِکَ الَّتِی لا یَقُومُ لَهَا شَیْءٌ

wa bi’izzatikal-lati la yaqumu laha shay

And by Your might, which nothing can resist;

وَبِعَظَمَتِکَ الَّتِی مَلأَتْ کُلَّ شَیٍْء

wa bi’azhamatikal-lati mala-at kul-la shay

And by Your tremendousness, which has filled all things;

وَبِسُلْطَانِکَ الَّذِی عَلاَ کُلَّ شَیٍْء

wa bisul-tanikal-ladhi ‘ala kul-la shay

by Your force, which towers over all things;

وَبِوَجْهِکَ الْبَاقِی بَعْدَ فَنَاءِ کُلِّ شَیٍْء

wa bi-waj-hikal-baqi ba’da fana-i kul-li shay

And by Your face,

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which subsists after the annihilation of all things,

وَبِأَسْمَائِکَ الَّتِی مَلأَتْ أَرْکَانَ کُلِّ شَیٍْء

wa bi-as-ma-ikal-lati malat ar-kana kul-li shay

And by Your Names, which have filled the foundations of all things;

وَبِعِلْمِکَ الَّذِی أَحَاطَ بِکُلِّ شَیٍْء

wa bi’il-mikal-ladhi ahata bikul-li shay

And by Your knowledge, which encompasses all things;

وَبِنُورِ وَجْهِکَ الَّذِی أَضَاءَ لَهُ کُلُّ شَیٍْء

wa bi-nuri waj-hikal-ladhi adha-a lahu kul-lu shay

And by the light of Your face, through which all things are illuminated!

یَا نُورُ یَا قُدُّوسُ

ya nuru ya qud-