Imam Hadi's Narrations from Ameerul Mo’minin
Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) narrated a good collection of maxims and sayings from his grandfather Ameerul Mo'minin, the pioneer of wisdom and justice in the earth. Here are some of them:
1. He narrated that Ameerul Mo'minin Imam Ali (a.s.) said, ‘Beware of wishes because they are from the wares of dissolutes.’ 13 Islam resists all means that lead to backwardness and deterioration. Among these means is the relying on wishing and giving up work and labor which means the stop of progress and development in life.
2. He narrated that Ameerul Mo'minin said, ‘He, who busies himself thinking of the afterlife, will be rich with no money, feel at ease with no family, and feel mighty with no fellows.’ 14
One, who cares for the affairs of the afterlife, will be rich with his piety and religiousness, will be happy because he satisfies his conscience through associating with his Creator, and will be respectable and honorable among people by his benevolence and piety.
3. He narrated that Ameerul Mo'minin said, ‘Knowledge is a worthy inheritance, morals are graceful garments, pondering is a clear mirror, and taking lessons is a sincere warner. It suffices you to have good manners by giving up what you hate from others.’ 15
4. He narrated that Imam Ali (a.s.) said, ‘Whoever feels conceited will perish.’ 16
5. He narrated from Ameerul Mo'minin his saying, ‘He, who is certain of recompense (from Allah), will give generously.’ 17
6. Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) said, “Once, a Jew came to Ameerul Mo'minin (a.s.) and said to him, ‘Tell me about that which is not of Allah, that which Allah does not have, and that which Allah does not know!’
Imam Ali (a.s.) said, ‘What Allah does not know is that He does not know (accept) that He has a child. This refutes your (the Jews’) saying that Uzayr is the son of Allah. As for that which is not of Allah, it is injustice because there is no injustice with Allah against His people. And as for your saying about that which Allah does not have, it is that Allah has no partner.’
The Jew was astonished and turned Muslim. He declared the shahada and then said to Imam Ali (a.s.), ‘I bear witness that you are the truth, from the people of truth, and have said the truth.’ 18
Imam Ali was the gate of the town of the Prophet’s knowledge. If he was given his right (in the caliphate), he would give verdicts to the people of the Bible from their Bible, to the people of the Psalms (Zabur) from their Psalms, and to the people of the Torah from their Torah. He often said that if the caliphate had come to him after the death of the Prophet (a.s.), every Jew or Christian would have turned Muslim and followed the path of the truth.
7. Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) narrated from his fathers that a man from Iraq asked Imam Ali (a.s.) when he was marching (with his army) for the battle of Siffeen, ‘Tell us about our marching to fight the people of Sham! 19 Is it by the fate of Allah?’
Imam Ali (a.s.) said, ‘O sheikh (old man), yes, it is. By Allah, you do not mount a castle or descend into a valley unless it has been determined by the fate of Allah.’
The man said, ‘I expect the reward of my efforts from Allah O Ameerul Mo'minin.’
Imam Ali (a.s.) explained fate by saying, ‘O sheikh, wait! You may think it is inevitable fate and inescapable doom! If it is so, then reward and punishment, enjoining and forbidding, scolding, warning and threatening will be void, and a bad doer will not to be blamed and a good doer will not be rewarded. A good doer will be worthier of being blamed than a guilty one, and a guilty one will be worthier of reward than a good doer. This opinion is of idolaters, enemies of Allah, fatalists, and the magi. O sheikh, Allah the Almighty has charged His people but has given them the option to do or not to do, and forbidden them as warning. He gives much for a little. He is not disobeyed out of defeat and He is not obeyed by force. He has not created the heavens, the earth, and what is between them in vain. That is the opinion of those who disbelieve, and woe unto those who disbelieve from the Fire…’
The man got up reciting some verses of poetry in which he praised Imam Ali (a.s.) and showed his satisfaction to what Imam Ali said. 20
We shall discuss in detail the subject of fate in the following chapter inshallah.
8. He narrated that Imam Ali (a.s.) said, ‘Many are they those inattentive people who may weave a dress to wear but it is their shroud, and build a house to live in but it is the place of their grave.’ 21
14. Al-Amali by at-Toosi.
15. Ma’athir al-Kubara’, vol.3 p.219.
16. Wassa’il ash-Shia, vol.1 p.78.
17. Ibid., vol.11 p.523.
18. Ma’athir al-Kubara’.
19. Nowadays Damascus. But then, Sham encompassed the present Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine.
20. At-Tawhid, p.380-381.
21. Uyoon Akhbar ar-Redha.
Adapted from the book: "The Life of Imam ALI bin Muhammad AL-HADI" by: "Baqir Shareef al-Qurashi"
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