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Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.): The Peak of Knowledge

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

His Eminence, the Religious Authority Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah, delivered the two Friday prayer sermons at the Imamain Al-Hassanain Mosque, Zul Kaada, 5th 1430 H. - October, 23rd 2009. Several prominent religious scholars, dignitaries and thousands of believers attended the Jumu’a prayer.


The First Sermon

Imam As-Sadiq: The producer of scholars and intellectuals

Allah says in His Glorious Book: "Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House! And to purify you a (thorough) purifying." (33:33). The Messenger of Allah (p.) says: "My household is like the ship of Noah; whoever embarks upon it will be saved and whoever turns away from it will be drowned." Last month, on the 25th of Shawwal, was the death anniversary of Imam Abi Abdullah Ja'afar Bin Muhammad As-Sadiq (a.s.).

Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) represents the role model that reached out to the entire Islamic reality, filling its horizons with knowledge and science in several life positions. Actually, the Imam's phase was the phase that produced religious scholars and intellectuals and guided the Imams of the other sects were guided, even if they did not share with him the same points of view. The Imam (a.s.) had a school that was opened up to all people and that enrolled every knowledge seeker; wherever he (a.s.) went, he would spread knowledge and science. Al-Hassan Bin Ali Al-Washa Al-Kufi, one of the narrators, said, while pointing to Al-Kufa Mosque: "I entered the Mosque and saw 900 Sheikhs – the term "Sheikh" here refers to a person who teaches people – each saying: "Jaafar Bin Muhammad told me."

During his stay in Al-Kufa, the Imam (a.s.) filled its Mosque with knowledge and science, knowing that mosques at that time were places specified for education and learning. The term "told me" means that the sheikhs were educated by the Imam. Moreover, when certain historians counted the figures who narrated Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.)'s traditions pertaining to several aspects of knowledge, they found out that they were four thousand teachers of different schools and Islamic sects.

In history, we realize that Jaber Bin Hayyan, a well-versed chemist, was taught chemistry by Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.), and he used to say in his writings that the westerners used to read: "My master, Ja'afar Bin Muhammad, told me."

In the Imam (a.s.)'s biography, it is reported that Abu Hanifa An-No'man, the Imam of the Hanafi School, was taught by Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) for two years, so the former used to say: "Were not for the two years, I would have been doomed." Moreover, the Imam of the Maliki School, Malik Bin Anas, says: "No ear has heard, no eye has witnessed, and no mind has imagined anyone better than Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) in knowledge, piety, and worship." Zaid Bin Ali Bin Al-Hussein (a.s.), to whom the Zaidis belong, says: "In every age there is a man who is one of us, Ahl Al-Beit, that Allah considers as a proof that holds the people accountable, the proof or evidence of our time in my nephew. Those who disagree with him will not be guided; and those who follow him will not be led astray."

The Imam's relations with the caliphs

Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) used to follow up all anti-Islam trends and principles to face them with his knowledge and science and to refute them in a civilized, objective, and scientific manner. Al-Mansour, one of the Abbasid caliphs, wrote to him: "Why do not you visit us like the others?" The Imam (a.s.) answered: "We do not have any worldly pleasure that we are afraid you would stop, nor do you have any matter of the Hereafter for us that we expect to gain from you – you are not among those who would guide us to what brings us closer to Allah, so that we would accompany you to be safe of Allah's punishment – nor are you enjoying bliss on which we should congratulate you – we do not consider the caliph position and power to be blessings that people ought to congratulate you for – nor are you suffering a misfortune for which we should console you. So why should we visit you?!" Al-Mansour wrote: "You may accompany us so that you will advise us, i.e we want you to advise us because the caliphate is a huge responsibility." The Imam (a.s.) answered: "He who seeks the worldly pleasures will not advise you – because he would actually be cheating you – and he who seeks the Hereafter will not accompany you." Al-Mansour then said: "He (a.s.) has taught me how to distinguish between those who seek this world and those who seek the Hereafter, and that he (a.s.) is one of those who seek the Hereafter."

When Imam As-Sadiq's father, Imam Al-Baqir (a.s.), was dying, he [Al-Baqir] asked his son to take care of the Shiites. So, Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) promised that he will and that he would teach them until they have to ask no one about anything. He would answer all their questions; and he would answer them, even if they did not ask him anything, in order to make them the learned and well-versed scholars that if they sit with other scholars, the latter would appreciate their profound knowledge and high cultural level.

The human freedom in the Imam's thought

The teachings of Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) fill tens of books that discuss different issues concerned with man, life, and Islam. On certain issues pertaining to freedom, there is a speech for Imam As-Sadiq in which he confirms that the freedom of the free man could not be granted by means of a decree issued by a king, or a caliph, or anyone in power, but rather freedom comes from within man, from his free will that represents his profoundness in life. Man could be free, even if he was lying in a confined cell; and he could be a slave, even if he was wandering in the widest horizons, since freedom is the free will and the free stand, and not the free movement.

It was narrated that Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) says: "A free man is a free man under all circumstances. If he was in trouble, he would remain patient. If calamities hit him, he would not break down even if he was imprisoned and overpowered and put in difficulties." He (a.s.) takes Prophet Yusuf (a.s.) as an example, and says: "Hence, imprisonment and slavery could not harm the Honorable Yusuf (a.s.) – because he was sold as a slave – And the darkness and fright of the well could not put him to loss, and Allah rewarded him and made the tyrant – the ruler of Egypt at that time – his (a.s.) slave after Yusuf was the tyrant's slave, until Allah made him His messenger and pitied the nation because of him. Patience and forbearance always results in good – the free man out to bear up the pains and troubles inflicted by those who wish to enslave, capture, and suppress him; just as the arrogant people try to enslave the peoples and confiscate their political decisions and economic progress –So, be patient and tolerant so as to see its reward."

Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) says: "There exists five traits; he who does not enjoy at least one of them would not be appreciated – he would not be one of those who are worth of being appreciated and valued – the first is loyalty, the second is good management – to run and organize life's affairs in the right manner – the third is shyness – to be shy and modest in his relations with people – the fourth is good morals, and the fifth, which encompasses all these traits, is freedom." The free man is the one who encompasses all these traits and applies them in his behavior and his situations and his relation with the entire reality. He is the one who enjoys a will that no challenges or troubles break down; but rather he remains free and faces all the problems the others impose on him.

Actually, Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) took this concept of freedom from Imam Ali (a.s.) who says: "O people! Adam did not beget bondsman nor bondswoman; men are all free." All the sons of Adam were born free and were not enslaved by anyone. The Imam (a.s.) also says: "Do not be a slave to another – neither to a king nor to a prince or a leader or a rich man, or anyone who owns money or high position; you ought not to submit or enslave yourself to any of these – when Allah has made you free." Allah has granted man freedom that consists a part of his existence and entity; a thing man ought not to let go of, because he is not its owner, but rather it is part of his humanity and existence. He (a.s.) also says: "Do not let greed enslave you when Allah has made you free," and: "A free man is a free man even if he was inflicted by harm, and a slave remains a slave even if fate helped him." Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) also says: "A religious man rejects desires, which makes him a free man."

Dialogue with atheists

Imam As-Sadiq used to go to the Hajj where he frequently met the unbelieving atheists and heretics who used to make fun of the Muslims' way of praying and the act of turning around (Tawaf) Al-Kaaba. Despite that, the Imam (a.s.) would open up to them in his mind and heart, instead of assaulting them, and he would conduct a dialogue with them presenting his arguments and proofs and refuting their misunderstandings and misconceptions. The Imam (a.s.) filled the world with knowledge and piety and a spirituality that opens up to all the issues of man and life, so I call on all the intellectuals and educated people, as well as the scholars, to spread Imam As-Sadiq's heritage amongst people, for it is a civilized heritage that reflects the bright image of the Members of the House (a.s.) who represent civilization that elevates man's position in life.

Peace be upon Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) the day he was born, the day he passed away, and the day he will be brought back to life.

The Second Sermon

American green light to Israeli colonization

In occupied Palestine, the enemy's Prime Minister declared that Israel has reached an agreement with the American Administration on the colonization activities, while the entity's Minister of War calls for reactivating the Zionist institution that grants licenses for carrying out colonization activities. This is a new practical sign that the American administration has given a full green light to the enemy to expand its colonization activities that have not stopped in the first place, and that are meant to expedite and accelerate, even at a time the Americans are talking about going forth with the negotiation process between the Palestinian Authority and the enemy.

Further "humiliating" the Palestinian people

On another level, the Israeli terrorist acts against the Palestinians continue, where the enemy expelled additional families from occupied Jerusalem, without any response from the Arab and Islamic countries, in addition to the continuous raids executed on Gaza's peripheries and the attacks carried out by the Palestinian settlers against the Palestinians while picking up olives.

Faced by this scene in which the entire world approves of the American – Israeli plan that aims at keeping the Palestinians under pressure until they surrender to them like humiliated persons and pledge alliance to them like slaves, we ask the Palestinian Authority: About what elections and institutional commitments are you talking?!

The entire world called on the Palestinians to conduct their own free elections; however, after the results, Gaza was besieged and rivers of Palestinian blood were spilled, and the West bank was placed under the American security that is supervised by the Zionists from afar. As a result, the Palestinians hit the worst level and they had to choose between dying from hunger and surrendering to the enemy, i.e. to death… despite all that, the world still talks about the integrity of the elections!!!

We ask: How could a people express their opinions in the elections while under the threat of being killed and under a savage occupation that history has never witnessed before, and at a time the big states are trying to clear the enemy's name from the war crimes and the crimes against humanity that the UN report has confirmed, suggesting to the enemy, in an indirect manner, to wage a new annihilation war against the Palestinians?

American double standards

We also ask the American President who was recently granted the Nobel Peace Prize: How could you speak of an annihilation war in "Darfur", while you know the actual nature of the tribal problem over there and you are aware that the Western states, including your own country, are nourishing this conflict; yet, you say no word about the annihilation war conducted against the Palestinians during the war on Gaza that was followed by a starvation siege that is still being exploited to exert pressures on the Palestinians to recognize the so-called national homeland of the Zionists on the Palestinian land?! How could an administration that calls for peace authorize the ongoing Zionist aggression on the Palestinians and the International Law?!

At the same level, we hear nothing from the American Administration about the Israeli espionage, but rather it satisfies itself with condemning the Israeli spy only and not the entity behind him. Moreover, and despite all that, America deploys its huge arsenal of battleships and advanced missiles to conduct a maneuver with the enemy, on the day a big spying operation and a dangerous breach to the American military and nuclear forces was declared. Thus, this maneuver would actually be the beginning of an expected aggression on the Arab and Islamic countries neighboring occupied Palestine…

We warn that the ongoing American game in the region is devious and deceitful, because America, after its failure in Iraq and its ongoing failure in Afghanistan and Pakistan, aims at exporting its crises to more than one location in the region and spreading chaos, violence, and terrorism, under the cover of the so-called democracy and peace…

Islamic unity: A top priority

Therefore, we call on the major Islamic states in the region for a thorough examining to the American plot, and we call on the Islamic Republic of Iran, that has been subjected to a brutal devious aggression that targeted a meeting for establishing unity and spreading good in the region, to be cautious from the probable American plots schemed for Iran's internal arena and camouflaged by the external negotiations on the Iranian nuclear dossier… We also call on the Pakistani authorities to face the American intelligence and others, to prevent the Islamic countries from turning into a location in which the spark of sedition would be lit and would eventually enflame the entire reality.

Therefore, we call on everyone not to neglect Islamic unity that represents the Muslims' life, strength, and invincibility, and to place this unity on top of their priorities, in all their political and non-political movements. This would thwart the enemies' project that aims at destroying the nation internally, at a time all those who are faithful seek to salvage it [the nation] from the hellfire of the occupation that is wreaking havoc in Iraq, Afghanistan, and occupied Palestine.

Lebanon: Beware of an international cover to an Israeli aggression

As for Lebanon whose expectations swing between the feelings of pessimism and optimism for the birth of a new Cabinet, after four months of waiting, is actually overlooking the security turmoil inflicted by the Zionist enemy in the South, at a time many officials and non-officials say or do nothing in response of the Israeli espionage on its land, as well as the violation of its airspace…

We warn from a wide-range international cover secured for the Israeli aggression, and from the engagement of the UNIFIL in this game that not only constitutes limited aggressions, but rather a preparation for an aggression of a large scale during which the enemy would take advantage of the preoccupation of the internal parties with their personal ambitions or ministerial portfolios to place the entire country within its occupation and aggression sphere.

We call on the Lebanese not to be occupied with the formation of the cabinet and to focus on the need for a state, and to totally unite in order to protect the independence that is violated by the internal complications and the external plots, because of which the Lebanese are about to lose the sense of independence, after they had lost its movement in their willpower and its reality in several political positions.