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(Ali (a): Between Worship of the Creator and Leadership of the Creation)

علي (ع) بين عبودية الخالق وإمامة المخلوق

1) We can approach the personality of Ali (a) from three angles: We can look at it from the angle of his personality, we can look at it from the angle of his deeds, and we can look at it from the angle of his spiritual position. From the perspective of his personality, God distinguished Ali (a) with a blessing never given before in human history. It was as if Almighty God wanted to prepare him (a) for his martyrdom in the mihrab of His worship in the Mosque of Kufa by two distinctions connected to His Sacred House, the Holy Kaaba: Ali (a) was born inside the Holy Kaaba itself, and he mounted the shoulders of the Prophet (s) to destroy the idols which were placed around the Holy Kaaba.

إن من الممكن أن نتناول شخصية علي (ع) من زوايا ثلاثة : فتارة ننظر اليها من الزاوية الذاتية ، وتارة من زاويةالسيرة العملية ، وتارة اخرى من زاويةالمقامات الربانية ..فإما من البعد الذاتي : فقد خص الله تعالى عليا (ع) بمكرمة لم نعهد لها مثيلا في تاريخ البشرية ، وكأن الله تعالى اراد ان يكافأه (ع) مقابل الشهادة في محراب عبادته في مسجد الكوفة ، بامتيازين مرتبطين ببيته الحرام الا وهما : الولادة في جوف البيت ، وارتقاء منكب النبي (ص) لتحطيم الاصنام حول الكعبة.

2) Viewing the personality of Ali (a) from the angle of his practical life, his life can be summarized as the embodiment of servitude towards God the Lord of the Universe at every stage of his life. He started on this course from the very beginning having even stayed in the bed of the Prophet (s). He showed the utmost patience in dealing with what transpired after the death of the Prophet (s), saying, “I remained patient even though there was a speck in my eye and a lump in my throat.” In addition to that, he did not do anything to fracture the life of the Islamic Nation with its plotting enemies gathering from every direction. He ended by not sacrificing principles just to preserve his rule. He once said, “If it hadn’t been for religion, I would have been the worst of the Arabs.”

وأما النظر الى شخصية علي (ع) من زاوية السيرة العملية ، فإن حياته (ع) تتلخص في تجسيد العبودية لله رب العالمين في كل مراحل حياته ، بدءاً من الإيثار الاول ، ألا وهو المبيت على فراش الرسول (ص) ..ومرورا على صبره بما جرى بعد وفاة الرسول قائلا : ( صبرت وفي العين قذى ، وفي الحلق شجى ).. ومع ذلك ، لم يقدم على ما فيه شرخ في حياة الامة ، ليطمع فيها الاعداء المحدقين بها من كل حدب وصوب .. وانتهاء بعدم تنازله عن المبادئ لتثبيت دعائم حكمه..فهو القائل: ( لولا الدين لكنت من ادهى العرب ).

3) Ali (a) strived to place the most complete and comprehensive significance on worship, from the spiritual states he found in the prayer niche to the human conditions he encountered on the battlefield. Ali was not satisfied to divide life into a part for God and a part for other than God. All of life was for him a manifestation of God’s word which said, “Verily my prayer, my piety,
my living, and my dying are all for God, the Lord of the Universe.” We could characterize Ali’s view of the world by saying that every action by every individual or society should be based on gaining God’s good pleasure, whether it be great or small. Is it odd that the slave should behave according to his Owner’s will?

لقد سعى علي (ع) في اعطاء معنى أوسع واشمل للعبودية ، بدءاً من الحالات العرفانية في المحراب ، الى الحالات الانسانية في الحروب .. فلم يرض علي (ع) بتقسيم الحياة الى ما لله تعالى ولغيره.. فالحياة كلها عنده مصداق لقوله تعالى : { ان صلاتي ونسكي ومحياي ومماتي لله رب العالمين } .. فلنتصور لون الحياة على الارض ، عندما تكون كل حركة للافراد والحضارات ، قائمة على اساس مرضاة الله تعالى في كل صغيرة وكبيرة .. اوهل من الغريب ان يكون سلوك المملوك على وفق مراد المالك ؟..أم ان ذلك مقتضى طبيعة الخالقية والمخلوقية !..

4) It would never be acceptable to say that Islamic sacred law could be applied carelessly in regards to the leadership and guidance of the Islamic Nation, when it is amongst the single most important relationships in all of human society! That is because the behavior of the people in a society is closely linked with the top of the pyramid of leadership. When Musa (a)was absent from his community for forty nights, he didn’t leave them without the leadership of his successor, Haroun (a), and even in spite of that they took the golden calf as a God instead of the Almighty! So how could the Seal of the Prophets (s) neglect the issue of succession when he was well aware of the seeds of division that were already taking route?

ليس من المقبول ابدا ، ان تقف الشريعة موقف اللامبالاة تجاه مسألة الحاكمية والولاية على الامة ، والتي هي من أخطر مفردات العلاقات في المجتمع الانساني !!..وذلك لان سلوك القاعدة البشرية مرتبطة ارتباطا وثيقا برأس الهرم القيادي.. فهذا موسى الكليم (ع) يغيب عن قومه اربعين ليلة ، فلا يتركهم من دون استخلاف وصيه هارون .. ومع ذلك اتخذوا العجل من بعده الها يعبد من دون الله تعالى !.. فكيف يهمل النبي الخاتم (ص) امر الوصاية ، وهو العالم ببذور الفتن التي استنبتتها الايام؟!

5) The significance of the Imamate is that the one who holds it should be a model for the people, and as a ruler should be like a representative of God’s rule in every affair. So the one who possesses this rule should be at the highest level of integrity in thought and deed. This is the reason for the divine prohibition on the unjust claiming the leadership of the Islamic Nation.

إن الامامة تعني ان يكون صاحبها قدوة للناس ، وحاكما كنيابة عن حاكمية الله تعالى في كل الشؤون ..ومن هنا كانت تستلزم اعلى درجات النزاهة فكرا وسلوكا .. وهذا معنى النفي الالهي القاطع لامامة الظالمين للامة !..

6) People can be reasonably classified into several groups: 1 – Those who are unjust their whole lives through, 2 – those who are just in the beginning but unjust at the end, 3 – those who are unjust at the beginning but just at the end, and 4 – those who are just their entire lives. Naturally, the people of the first category don’t end up there spontaneously, and likewise for the people of the third group as the sacred verse declares. This is because the unjust person at some moment in his life reaches the point in which he doesn’t achieve the position of Imamate, and as a result he determines that achieving the last is crucial for this important position. Is there anyone better for this position than the one who never bowed down before an idol prior to the advent of Islam, the one who was the first to rush to the call of Islam, and who was first
to aid the preservation of the message after the establishment of the rule of
Islam?

ليعلم أن الناس بالحصر العقلي على اقسام: الظالم في كل حياته .. وغير الظالم في اولها والظالم في آخرها ..والظالم في اولها وغير الظالم في آخرها .. وغير الظالم في كل حياته ، ومن المعلوم عدم استحقاق الاولين لهذا المقام بالبداهة ، وكذلك عدم استحقاق الثالث لها بمنطوق الاية الشريفة ، وذلك لان الظالم في برهة من حياته ، يندرج في العنوان الذي لا يستحق به منصب الامامة ، فيتعين - نتيجة لذلك -استحقاق الاخير لهذا المنصب الخطير.. وهل لهذا المقام مصداق غير الذي لم يسجد لصنم قط قبل الاسلام ، وكان اول المسارعين حين الدعوة للاسلام ، وكان اول الذابين على حريم الرسالة بعد اقامة حاكمية الاسلام؟!..

7) Imam Al-Sadiq (a) is reported to have said, “God took Ibrahim as a servant before He took him as a Prophet, and He took him as a Prophet before He took him as a Messenger, and He took him as a Messenger before He took him as a Friend, and He took him as a Friend before He made him Imam. And when He had assembled all these things for him, He said, verily, I have made you an Imam for the people. This was indeed a grand thing to Ibrahim. Ibrahim said, “And (there will be Imamate) from my offspring?”, and He said, “The unjust cannot disrupt my covenant.” From this sacred text we know that Ibrahim attained the position of Imamate during the latter part of his time when he received the divine affirmation of his achievement, and that was by the virtue of the sacrifice of his son Ismail (a) which gained him this status right. Hence Allah said, {Verily this is a manifest challenge for him}.

روي عن الصادق (ع) : ( إن الله اتخذ ابراهيم عبدا قبل ان يتخذه نبيا .. وان الله اتخذه نبيا قبل ان يتخذه رسولا .. وان الله اتخذه رسولا قبل ان يتخذه خليلا .. وان الله اتخذه خليلا قبل ان يجعله اماما ..فلما جمع له الاشياء قال : اني جاعلك للناس اماما.. فمن عظمها في عين ابراهيم قال : ومن ذريتي قال لا ينال عهدي الظالمين ) .. ومن هذا النص يعلم ان ابراهيم (ع) قد منح مقام الامامة في اواخر عهده ،حينما اجتاز الاختبار الالهي بنجاح ، وذلك بامتثال ذبح ولده اسماعيل (ع) الذي علق عليه الحق قائلا : { إن هذا لهو البلاء المبين }.

8) The practical lesson to be learned from the verse of the Imamate is that the one who wants to arrive at the highest level of communion, the stage of “friendship with the Most Merciful, to which no level comes closer”, then he should monitor himself closely for the divine tests which will uncover the sacred jewel. The people are doomed except for the knowledgeable, and the knowledgeable are doomed except for the ones who act, and the ones who act are doomed except for the sincere, and the sincere are in serious danger!

إن الدرس العملي من آية الامامة : ان من يريد الوصول الى درجات القرب العالية ، كـ( خلة الرحمن وما يقرب منها من الدرجات ) فإن عليه ان يعد نفسه للاختبارات الالهية الكاشفة عن جوهره..فالناس هلكى الا العالمون ، والعالمون هلكى الا العاملون .. والعاملون هلكى إلا المخلصون .. والمخلصون على خطر عظيم !..

9) To follow the successors of the Prophet (s) is an honor and a duty. From one perspective, the one who follows them feels almost intoxicated because he is led closest to the houses in which God permits His name to be raised. Clearly Ahlul-Bayt (a) are the most knowledgeable about what is in that house! From another perspective the one who follows them feels that there is a tax for this sacred knowledge which is to go from simply having love for the Imam to practicing what the Beloved Imam loves. Between these two expressions there is a clear difference to the one who has heart, to the one who can hear and see. Do you see the difference?
sacred knowledge which is to go from simply having love for the Imam to practicing what the Beloved Imam loves. Between these two expressions there is a clear difference to the one who has heart, to the one who can hear and see. Do you see the difference?

ان موالاة الاوصياء بعد الرسول (ص) لهو فخر والتزام !.. فمن ناحية يشعر صاحبها بالنشوة ، لاهتداءه الى اقرب السبل الموصلة الى البيوت الذي أذن الله تعالى أن يرفع فيها اسمه ، ومن المعلوم أن أهل البيت ادرى بما في البيت !.. ومن ناحية اخرى ، يشعر صاحبها بان لهذه المعرفة النظرية ضريبة ، وضريبتها : تحويل الامام المحبوب الى محبوب إمام ، وبين التعبيرين فارق واضح لمن كان له قلب او القى السمع وهو شهيد.. أو هل اكتشفت الفرق ؟!..

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