13 // Lesson thirteen
Qualities of an imam
The imam and spiritual leader of Muslims, who as the successor of the Prophet of God must lead the religious and worldly affairs of the people, must possess the following distinctive qualities:
1 Must be protected from any sins and mistakes in order to be able to guide society to happiness, because what is immersed in sins and mistakes will in no way be able to cleanse people from sins and mistakes.
2 The imam must have a connection with the divine world, possess infinite divine knowledge in order to bring to people the Islamic truth and enlightenment. For. if he, like others, speaks with a sense of doubt or uses ordinary worldly knowledge, then his statements will not be convincing and people will not be able to grasp the truths of Islamic education.
3 The imam must be appointed by Allah with the help of a great prophet or with the help of a previous imam. Because, apart from Allah and His Messenger, no one can determine the purity and integrity of a person, and people will not be able to be sure of their future.
Therefore, it is absolutely wrong that the choice of an imam should be left to the people, because it is possible that people will consider a person pure and blameless, while in reality he may be a person drowning in sins and vices, or people will be able to see the true state or the purity of some personality, and in the future he may get on the path of strength.
Only the Lord God, who knows the present and the future, the external and internal world of people, can know that any person is worthy to be the leader and leader of the community after the great prophet (Dbar).
The All-Merciful Qur’an says: “Allah knows best on whom to entrust the mission and leadership of worldly and spiritual matters of people.”
Who should be designated as the successor of the prophet?
The Prophet of Islam, by the order of God, presented to the people all his successors and called them by name and identified them as imams. In particular, he repeatedly reminded the people about the succession of the emir of the orthodox Ali. It is clear from historical books and traditions that during the 23 years of his prophetic mission, his eminence raised the question of Ali’s prophetic succession at any convenient opportunity. Here we will point out only the two below-mentioned cases, one of which refers to the time of the beginning of the prophetic mission of the great prophet, and the other to the last year of the life of his holiness.
Prophethood and imamate are interconnected
Almost three years after the beginning of the prophetic mission of the great prophet, the following surah came to his holiness: “And admonish your nearest relatives.” Commentators on the Qur’an in their comments explain this surah as follows: “Once the Lord Almighty commanded the great messenger of God to call to Ali, who was no more than fifteen years old, all his close relatives. The Prophet ordered that dinner be prepared and invited the children of Abdul-Muttalib , who were forty men, to announce his prophetic mission to them after dinner. That day, after dinner, the Prophet’s uncle Abu Lahab broke up all the gatherings with his meaningless words.
The great prophet convened a banquet for the second time and after dinner announced his mission and said: – I was chosen by God for prophecy and brought with me the good of this world and the hereafter and I have a mandate to call you to Him. Who among you is ready to support me to be my brother, helper and successor?
Ali rose from his seat and announced his readiness. The Prophet (Dbar) ordered him to sit down and repeated his call three times in succession, but no one except Ali responded to his call. At this time, His Eminence, turning to those present, said: – This young man (Ali) is my brother and successor among you. Follow his way and listen to his words.
This event, which does not cause any doubts from the point of view of history and traditions of Shiite and Sunni origin, clearly shows that the issues of prophethood and imamate are inseparable, and on the day when the prophet of God is presented to the people, his successor, the imam, must also be presented and the spiritual leader of the people, who will take over after the death of the prophet. In principle, you should know that prophecy and imamate have a single foundation and both are links of the same chain, and imamate is a continuation of the program of prophethood and the successor of the prophet carries out the same program as the prophet. The most important thing is that the prophet is the founder of the religion, and the imam is its spokesman.
The great prophet of Islam in the last year of his life, after returning from a pilgrimage to Mecca, made a stop in a town called Ghadir, where pilgrims who arrived in Mecca from different places diverged. He stood on a high place, where everyone could see him clearly, and announced to the crowd of almost a hundred thousand pilgrims the decree of God appointing Ali as his successor. He raised Ali’s hand high, so that all could see him, and said: “O Muslims! Just as I am your master and can command you, Ali is also your master and can command you -” Whose master am I, that’s why Ali is the master.”
Thus, it became clear to everyone that Ali was there
the permanent successor of the great prophet, and on that day all those present there congratulated him on this appointment.
Thus, the great prophet of Islam several times and two and a half months before his death announced the succession of the emir of the faithful so that people would know that someone should be the ruler of Muslims after his death.
Jabir bin Abdullah Ansari said: – As soon as the verse “Obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in command among you” was revealed (Surah An-Nasa, verse 59 – trans.), I said to the Messenger of God: “O Messenger of God! We have come to know God and His Messenger and we need to know the rulers (that is, imams – trans.), to whom obedience is considered obligatory for us, according to the verse. Explain to us what is meant by the concept of “owner of command”.
The Messenger of God said: “About Jabir, these are my successors and imams after me and the first among them is Ali bin Abi Talib and then Hasan bin Ali, Husayn bin Ali, Ali bin al-Hasan, Muhammad bin Ali – in the Torah he is known as ” Bakir” and you will recognize him already in old age and when you see him, give him my greetings, after Muhammad bin Ali there are Jafar bin Muhammad, Musa bin Jafar, Ali bin Musa, Muhammad bin Ali, Ali bin Muhammad, Hasan bin Muhammad and after him follow his son, the one whose name and Konya (that is, a prefix to Arabic names that indicates whose son he is or who is his father) coincides with my name and my Konya and this is the one whom the Lord God made almighty over the whole world. He is the one who will hide from the eyes of men and his absence will last for a long time, as long as there are people with firm faith who believe in his imamate.”
Of course, there are many traditions in which the names of the successors of the Lord’s prophet are given, and we cited this tradition only as an example.
Thus, it is absolutely clear that the twelve Imams of the Shiites were determined by the Lord God and through the mediation of the great prophet, and in addition, each Imam pointed to the Imamate of the next Imam after him, so that people would not be mistaken in any way.
In addition to all of the above, as it was said before, the imam must be blameless and have a connection with the divine world, and after the great prophet, no one except these twelve imams claimed the imamate and no one could express scientific knowledge like these twelve imams.