Taqlid permitted by the shari'a
Adopted from the book : "The Principles of Ijtihad in Islam" by : "Shahid Murtadha Mutahhari"
After what I have narrated concerning the kind of taqlid forbidden by the shari'a, the Imam went on to explain the kind of taqlid permitted by the shari'a the kind which is to be praised, in these words : Whichever of the fuqaha' can protect his self, who can preserve his religion, who fights his desires and is obedient to the commands of his Master, then he should be followed by the people in taqlid.
Of course, it is clear that the struggle of a spiritual 'alim with his weaker desires is very different from the struggle of an ordinary person, because the desires of each individual are associated with specific activities. The desires of a youth are one thing, the desires of an old man another; everyone, in whatever position, degree, stage or age he may be, has a particular kind of desire. The standard for subservience to inferior desires for a spiritual 'alim is not what we see: for example, whether he drinks alcohol or not, whether he has stopped praying and fasting or not, whether he gambles or not.37 The standard for the subservience to inferior desires for such a person is whether he desires position, to have his hand kissed, to become famous and popular and have people walk behind him, to use the wealth of the Muslims to lord over others, to allow his friends and relatives, especially his sons, to benefit from the wealth of the Muslims. Then the Imam said : Only some of the Shi'i fuqaha have these great qualities and traits of character, not all of them.
This hadith, on account of its final phrases, is one of the pieces of evidence in the question of ijtihad and taqlid. So it is clear that both ijtihad and taqlid can be divided into two kinds: that which is permitted by the shari'a and that which is not.
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