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Consultation is a Divine Order

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

The Religious Authority H.E. Sayyed M. H. Fadlullah delivered the two Friday prayer sermons at the Imamain Al-Hassanain Mosque, 31st October 2008 A.D., 2 Zul Kaada 1429 H..Several prominent religious scholars, dignitaries and thousands of believers attended the Jumu’a prayer. 

The First Sermon

The Messenger’s Morals

Allah says in His Glorious Book.

It is part of the Mercy of Allah that thou dost deal gently with them Were thou severe or harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about thee: so pass over (Their faults), and ask for (Allah’s) forgiveness for them; and consult them in affairs (of moment). Then, when thou hast Taken a decision put thy trust in Allah. For Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him).

This is what Allah, the Most Exalted, says to His Messenger (p.) whom He sent to bring the people out of darkness into light. The Messenger's (p.) mind was open up on the whole truth and always said the right opinion. He was the leader whom Allah sent as a sign of Mercy, to raise the level of all people, through the revelation of Allah, and whose morals opened up the people's hearts, to open their minds on what he had to say.

The Messenger (p.) was kind and gentle because he (p.) wanted to attract the people to his Message. He wanted them to love him, having felt his love to them. That is why he was not severe or harsh hearted.

He (p.) was the tolerant who was able listen to all people whether those who believed in him (p.) or those who did not and treated him (p.) as their enemy. He (p.) was the wise man who did not utter any word unless it was in its proper place, and one that would reach the people’s minds, hearts and thought. He (p.) was also forgiving. He (p.) forgave the faults of others, whether Muslims or unbelievers who struggled against him. He (p.) used to ask Allah to forgive their sins and faults.

The Infallibility of the Messenger:

Allah wanted His Messenger (p.) to consult his companions in all the issues he (p.) was about to decide on, like war and peace, and all the affairs of the lives of Muslims, although the Messenger (p.) was infallible, aided by Allah’s knowledge, and had an enlightened mind with no place for darkness. Thus, his infallibility included all aspects and domains: in conveyance, execution, doctrinal and daily issues... It is not as some other Islamic sects say that it is confined to what he conveys. We do not agree with this because infallibility is something that cannot be divided. He (p.) was infallible as an entire being, including his heart, mind and all his actions in life, since his role was to take people out of darkness to light in everything they believe in or everything they hold the responsibility of and everything they do.

This is the course the leaders should adopt. They should consult those whom they work with even if they were very wise, because the leader’s role is to make his followers and companions leaders in the making. And that is why we understand when we read Allah saying and consult them in the affairs, although the truth was already before his very eyes, that He wanted His Messenger (p.) to inspire confidence among his companions to let them gain the habit of thinking in all their affairs.

This is what all leaders, religious political, social or military should adopt, and never be opinionated, since he who does so would be wrong although he seeks to be right. And he might even wrong others. Nevertheless, to consult others does not mean that one has to adopt their opinion. It only means to learn about their view in order to reach his own opinion. Then, when he does, he would go ahead and put it into practice. Then, when thou has taken a decision put thy trust in Allah.

The Principle of Consultation.

Thus, we find that the Glorious Quran emphasizes the need for consultation not only with respect to leaders, but also to all members of the Muslim society .We read in Allah’s saying.

Those who obeyed their Lord- by believing in Allah and the Messenger and His Message-and establish regular Prayer; who (conduct) their affairs by mutual Consultation…

 That the Muslim society should not be run by the opinion of any single person who is opinionated. It has to be run by means of consultation, which might start by the family, where its members consult one another, in all the affairs that have to do with their interests and relations, especially when one of them has a certain knowledge in a certain sphere.

No one should be so opinionated to the extent that he would not let  any body advise him, and this is what we notice in certain families  where the father or the husband would not let the wife or the children give their opinion regardless of how educated or learned they are.

Consultation should extend to the relations people make with each other in all circles of life, so that each man will know that he does not follow his whims. He has to consult others, especially those who have experience and not resort to Istikhara (by means of a rosary or through opening the Quran), because Istikhara is only resorted to when all other means have been resorted to but did not yield any result.

Imam Ali (a.s.) said: The Messenger sent me to Yemen and told me:

O Ali, He who asks the opinion of others will not fail and he who consults others will not be remorseful – since it will lead him to the truth. The Messenger (p) also says that decisiveness is consulting those of sound opinion and complying with their advice.

The Qualities of those whose advice is sought

Imam Al-Hasan (a.s.) says: Whenever a group of people consults one another they will be guided. Imam Al-Rida (a.s.) says that his father, Imam Al-Kazim (a.s.), had a incomparable mind yet he used to consult his servants and when asked about what made him do so, he said that perhaps Allah would open up their minds.

The Messenger (p.) advises Ali (a.s.) saying: O Ali, do not consult the stingy, for he frustrates you against your gaol. Do not consult the acquisitive, for he garnishes the evils for you. You should know that cowardice, stinginess, and acquisitiveness are instincts that are contained by mistrust.

 And Imam Ali (a.s.) tells Malik Al-Ashtar: Never take counsel of a miser, for he will vitiate your magnanimity and frighten you of poverty. Do not take counsel of a coward also, for he will cheat you of your resolves. Do not take counsel of the greedy too: for he will instil greed in you and turn you into a tyrant. Miserliness, cowardice and greed deprive man or his trust in God.

The Imam (a.s.) also said: Consult he who fears Allah, because he will not exploit this opportunity to harm you. He also says:  the best to consult is the man who went into a lot of experiments and thus gained a lot of experience. The Messenger (p.) says that he disavows those who cheat Muslims. He also stresses that a believer should advise his brother believer and that those who do not offer the advice when asked, Allah will deprive them of their minds.

We have to strive to make consultation the rule that governs the relations of the Muslim society, especially when the Muslims live the reality of a challenge from others who force them to enter war or peace.

The Second Sermon

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

Palestine: State and Settler Terror

The Enemy’s entity is experiencing a state of political turmoil; as a result of the impasse the Resistance in Lebanon and Palestine has driven them into, as well as its internal political troubles and the demise of their historic leaders as well as other security political and electoral complications.

Nevertheless, the enemy gives its settlers a free hand to destroy the properties of the Palestinians in Hebron/Al-Khalil, throwing stones at their houses and cars and profaning their cemeteries, thus actually practicing two kinds of terror on the Palestinians; that of the settlers and that of the government.

It has become clear that whenever the enemy feels that his internal conditions are critical, especially with the political disintegration it is suffering from that will lead him to new elections, it will run forward by escalating its terrorist practices against the Palestinians and encouraging the extremists to threat any political or security gains that the Palestinians might gain as a result of the enemy’s state of general confusion.

This is what the Palestinians should know to learn how to deal with the enemy. They should establish their national unity and avoid falling in a struggle for power, or in the traps the occupation is setting under the pretence of negotiations and preparing a favourable environment for peace. They have to know that the enemy will give them nothing when it is weak, and will try to destroy them even further when it is strong. Thus the Palestinian people do not have any other option, but to cling to resistance and national unity. This is what they have to hold fast to in the following dialogue rounds that would lay the foundation for an internal Palestinian strategy to confront the Israeli evasiveness towards the Arab initiative which the Zionists have resurfaced to play on the nerves of some Arabs who like to listen to the enemy’s words, but who do not care about the causes of the nation, and who become panicked whenever the Resistance is mentioned as a viable option, since they have decided to run after the bait of moderation the Americans have thrown.

Condemning the American Aggression

As several Arab parties insist on going along with the American dictates despite the weakness the Administration is suffering from in its last weeks, the American terrorism has sneaked from Iraq to Syria to commit a new massacre against the civilians of the working and poor people, thus sending an intimidating message to other Arab and Muslim positions.

It is a style the American occupation has grown used to: bombing the civilians even when attending a wedding or sitting peacefully in their homes in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and bombing the poor in the countryside or in the slums of the cities in Iraq, without any discrimination between a sect or a race, as long as they are all Muslims and peaceful and as long as they all oppose the occupation.

Arab “support”

As we denounce these moving terrorist  acts that represent the ugliest and the most dangerous image of an army that uses its most modern technologies against the workers, the peasants and the farmers, all under the pretence of fighting terrorism, while the occupation itself is the most evident example of coward and ugly terrorism… we want the Iraqi government to move quickly to prevent the occupation from feeling free to threaten the security of Iraq and the neighbouring Arab and Muslim countries. We also want the rest of the Muslim and Arab countries to shoulder their national and Islamic responsibilities in denouncing this horrific crime, and warn the occupying American Army that its crimes will hit back at it, and the American image in the region will be so clear that the Americans will no longer ask: Why do they hate us, but we will be the ones who will ask them: Why should we love you.

As we are surprised by the silence of several Arab and Islamic countries towards such a huge crime that represents a flagrant violation of an Arab state sovereignty, we want the Arabs to know that America seeks to make them more and more involved in its satanic terrorist project in the region. It wants them to be its partners in inciting strife in the region between the majorities and the minorities and between the Sunni and the Shiites. It also wants to give them a new role in displacing minorities to disintegrate the region and create special projects that meet with the Zionist project, as a result of the ethnic cleansing operation that has been occurring in Iraq lately.

We warn the Arabs in the first place from continuing this lethal silence which suggests that they accept all American war crimes. The fire is approaching their positions and it will surely reach them and burn their thrones.

Lebanon: Unifying the country

The recent reconciliation atmosphere spread hope among the Lebanese after sectarian players tried to complicate national and Islamic relations. Such sectarian groups, used fear and exaggeration of facts to serve their own political calculations, which are tied to regional or international alliances and do not serve, in any way, Lebanon’s interests.

Reconciliation should push all parties to think about the country’s welfare, especially in the coming period of regional challenges. We hope the Cabinet would be one of true national unity rather than opposing alliances fighting each another.  It should work for the independence to Lebanon and to exert extensive efforts to offer social and health services to all Lebanese and preserve the environment especially that the winter season is about to start, and the people need not only the physical warmth to face its coldness, but also the warmth in their political relations. We look forward for a just and strong state, and not the farm that everybody is trying to exploit for his own personal or sectarian interest.

The coming stage needs a lot of work based on honesty and integrity and the least possible talking or showing off. Would the honest and faithful move to save the country, or would it be left to those who resort to show off or emotional reactions to incite new rounds of verbal and political violence?