Translator: Dr. Hassan Najafi
Publisher: Ansariyan Publications – Qum
Category: Imam Ali
ISBN: 978-964-438-976-8


Author: Ali Labbaf
Translator: Dr. Hassan Najafi
Publisher: Ansariyan Publications – Qum

ISBN: 978-964-438-976-8
visits: 5469
Download: 1131


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Publisher: Ansariyan Publications – Qum
ISBN: 978-964-438-976-8

Second Alteration: Removing Imamate from Principles of Faith and making it a Fundamental of School


Pay attention to this objection:

“…Difference in Imamate is not a difference in principle of faith. Since our childhood, we are taught that principles of faith are three and fundamentals of school are two. Principles of faith are separate from fundamentals of school.”![283]

One of the mode of dividing which has no root in Islamic teachings but today it is commonly used - separation of arguments of belief in principles of faith and fundamentals of school or in terms of unity-seekers - separation in real issues (common ones) and the side ones (i.e. those of Ijtihaad).

It so seems that this way of dividing might have originated in thought of Islamic unity. Or it should have much utility and usefulness in this path. Depending on this order discussion of Imamate has been discarded from comprising main and basic issues of Islam while, on the other hand the subject of Imamate constitutes the ground for difference between two schools - that of the Prophet’s House and that of Caliphs. It is brought down to a side matter. Therefore the different views in this regard become Ijtihaads, i.e. personal opinions based on personal conclusions. As such, it is by itself in the margin - not in the contents, beyond frontiers of principle which are common among Islamic sects.

So it is said:

“Islamic Caliphate comes among common principles because it carries rulership. Therefore politics is among pillars of Islam. As a result there needs to be an executive or administrator. But the discussion takes a detailed length to the effect to make it a branch subject not to be treated as incoherent with the principle…

For instance, Shia and Sunni differ from each other on application of the term. They had disputes on this issue as to whom should be applied the term of Caliph. This shows real Caliphate and politics as an entity that stands by itself. It is an outstanding issue; an element of its own independent base. Strange it is that who should take charge of Caliphate must be a side discussion, a branch argument!”[284]

“Some narrations about Guardianship are in the same trend and sense which are particular to Shia. Yet, Guardianship in that sense becomes a side matter pertaining to belief.”![285]

“In my view those who today say that there is no politics or rulership are more astrayed than those who deny immediate succession of Ali to Caliphate.”![286]

Unity-seekers by posing such divisions can very easily set aside a far margin to this discussion of Imamate, which is the main and most important difference of belief among sects of Islam. Their pretext is - a principle of faith, of Ijtihaad or a branch issue and so forth.

So it is said:

“The other issues wherein runs difference among religions are among principles. Every school has a fundamental for itself.”[287]

However in each sect such side belief, not the basic ones, that have no relation with fundamental issues of Islam, can be found.

Thus it is said:

“The subject of supreme leadership of Muslims was the element that gave blow in the beginning to body of Islam. It hurt the united rows of Islam. Since this was among the second grade of issues, it did not create controversy with unity of principle and purpose. The difference exited therein was hurtful to unity of Muslims.”[288]

In other words, Imamate against the principle of faith is only a branch of belief. Therefore it is on this ground that Islam does not acknowledge it as a valid principle!

On the other side, this type of division (or dividing) displays all Islamic sects in basic issues and joint principles of faith of Islam; and makes all to benefit by the link with the root of Islam![289]

In this way another step is taken towards unity.

So it is said:

“What Islam regards valid among principle and branches[290] one should believe therein. He is a Muslim. Those principles are three: Monotheism, Prophethood and Day of Resurrection…

So Imamate is not from principles of Islam. It is from principles of Shia faith, He who denies this, if he believes in three said principles, (Monotheism, Prophethood and Resurrection) is a Muslim but not Shia.[291] ”![292]

“Imamate is from fundamentals of school, not from principles of faith. Denial of this principle does not become a reason for the denier to be treated out of Islam…”![293]

In one comprehensive glance it can be said:

After the last commentary on separation of Imamate and Caliphate:

“Commentary of second kind towards co-ordination and nearness in the most important matter of difference Imamate; Muhammad Jawad Mughnia has written an essay on it. He says Imamate is not from principles of Islam. It is the base of Shia faith and its essentiality, which returns to principles.”![294]

Criticism and Analysis

The body and structure of Islam is in discussion. Its teachings can be divided into two entities - the lower structure and the above structure. In this division, some teachings of faith including obligations or duties and those of beliefs in relation to all teachings of conduct or of belief housed in the lower structure. These are called basics of Islam or basis of faith in narrations of infallible Ahle Bayt. The sense of this is totally other than the common description as principles of faith.

On this basis, that batch of teachings of faith is called base or principle of faith. The root or construction of Islam rests on that. Not because outer belief - even its contents - is common with Islamic sects, are called principles of faith.

On the basis of what we said, Shia believes that Imamate is part of principles and pillars of faith. In faith of Islam the element of Imamate is the fundamental of the foundation.

Here we quote some writings of Shia scholars:

“The reality of a thing is its own base and root. Its structure is built on it - i.e. on its base and on its own root. Therefore principle of faith is that on which faith is built or stands thereon. Such it is to believe in Imamate; Quran and traditions support this.”[295]

“Imamate and leadership of religion in Shia school is a part of principle from view of essentiality of belief. It stands in the row of Monotheism, Prophethood and Day of Judgment.”[296]

“When we Shias want to describe principles of faith on the basis of religion we count it as a part of principle.”[297]

“We believe that Imamate is one of the principles. Faith without belief in it is incomplete.”[298]

“No doubt that the only way to reach true elements of knowledge (science of knowledge) is to dive into contents of religion to obtain pearls of knowledge the Prophet has pointed to us.

It is only when we understand the directions of the Prophet regarding adherence to Imamate, which is viewed by the Prophet as an important pillar of the very structure itself. The Prophet goes even further. He says one must know his Imam in his lifetime. If one died without recognizing the Imam during his lifetime, it is as if he died in ignorance (pagan’s death).

That is, such a person has not understood the reality of monotheism, revelation and prophethood of the prophets and is not blessed by heavenly guidance of Quran and his life had not been Islamic and Quranic even though he might have believed in all true beliefs and had been imbued with all distinctive qualities and no matter how punctual he might have been in his life in discharging religious obligations such as prayers, fasting, Hajj, Zakat, fighting Jihad, has always attended mosque etc.”[299]

“The outcome is that: Belief in Guardianship and Imamate of Ali and other infallible Imams (his sons) is a backbone and worth bestowing element to all other principles of faith as well as character, conduct and deeds. Without that, faith with all its heads and titles has no divine validity nor is it of any value before God. It is like a zero which gets no value although several thousands zeros might stand in a row. A number must accompany a zero to get the value. Else, nobody will count zeros. Unless belief and deeds follow the fundamental of Imamate in the track of the Guardianship of Infallible Ahle Bayt, God does not pay any heed nor do they get a place with him. Everything is gone without any return.”[300]

“This dividing line, which is a standard one, keeps belief in Guardianship and Imamate in a row with principles of faith. Some have erroneously concluded that: Belief in Imamate and Wilayat of Ahle Bayt (a.s.) is not among necessities of Islam. The belief in Islam is possible without that. On the other hand the holy verses prove other than this.

Therefore the subject of Guardianship is more obligatory and necessary than other obligations. It is more important before God than all duties. There is a point worth considering here. Among the five pillars: prayers, fasting, Zakat, Hajj and Guardianship only in four, excuse is justifiable. In four pillars excuse is accepted by God. The Prophet (the lawmaker) has given margin. For instance, in journeys prayers become short; likewise, fasting is avoided in sickness too. Zakat is not obligatory if one is financially not well off. Hajj is not binding if one is financially unable to do. But Guardianship of infallible Ahle Bayt (a.s.) is in no way exempted. It is a duty whatever conditions or circumstances be there one is bound to obey Imam and recognize him and be in his service. In their times, we shall be resurrected.”[301]

Third Alteration: Aim of Eschewing Shia teachings



In Islamic literature, Baraat (i.e. seeking distance from the enemies of Infallible Ahle Bayt) is side by side with Tawalla (i.e. being friends with friends of Ahle Bayt). It is in the row of Imamate and Wilayat of Ahle Bayt (a.s.).

Baraat from enemies of Ahle Bayt (a.s.) stands side by side with Guardianship. These two depend on each other. It is a need and necessity. Tawalla is in meaning of belief in Imamate and Guardianship of Ahle Bayt (a.s.). It is a basic pillar of piety. It contains very important and great substance in it. In the issue of Baraat, to be religious or faithful cannot be possible without this.

The foundation and root of Tabarra is: To entertain no good terms at heart although at tongue you may agree with them. Who are they? They are deviated, perverted and astray in relation to Ahle Bayt of Prophet - adversaries of them. In conversation to show you are displeased with them. In deed and action to be distant with them or to seek distance from their customs, meetings, taste and religion.

By existing or in presence of such a fundamental in faith how can it be said with regard to Godly figures or those who are so close to God and loved by God that they had friendly differences or had intimate conduct. How can they be friendly though in differences or intimate with enemies of religion of God?[303] On the ground that a ranking implacability the Godly men do not have we cannot set aside or repudiate totally Baraat which is one of the pillars and fundamentals. It is not a personal matter or on personal interest. It is a God’s command, which should be obeyed as His other obligations. In Baraat, there is no selfish motive nor are there any personal tendencies. This obligation is based on divine decree. Its pivot is enmity and love with religion of God. We cannot be friendly with enemies of God. Likewise, we cannot be enemies with friends of God.

Baraat in no way is like worldly love and hatred. It is neither material nor personal. It cannot be compared with human psychological conditions, which occur daily in life of individuals.

It is only an effort to invalidate this fundamental of Baraat by using unsuitable words. As it is said, the word of truth is established by what is not true. Anyway, this fundamental is based on God’s order. From the other side, being a religious one is possible by knowing the guidance. To attain guidance compulsorily one should know the astray too. One should know those who created innovations in religion.

It is also necessary to know what those innovations in religion are. Then only can we separate faith from that which is not faith.

If we want to attain correct faith, to get a correct way of worship to God, we should know enemies of faith. We must know their role in deviating people from religion. And we should convey our knowledge in this regard to others too.

In fact it is necessary to know the astray-going and perversions from real faith. To know leaders of misguidance is necessary. Then we must introduce them to Islamic society. By so doing we can rescue ourselves from going wrong. We can be aloof from them, which is necessary.

Designing such discussions is a need towards researching knowledge of religion and understanding Islamic truths. It cannot be called as an insult, an abuse or foul language. This has been made an excuse so that an advantage could be drawn therefrom and which is to close such discussions once and for all. The results of such discussion are beneficial. They want to deprive others of it.

A question that arises in the mind is that:

Unity-seekers have stepped far beyond frontiers of political unity. Practically they have plunged into Sunni beliefs. They have done this for sake of Islamic Unity; and they are moving fast in that direction. Now what are those conjectures left for them to convey or propagate that they try to delete and rescind this fundamental of Baraat from Shia teachings?

In reply it can be said:

So far whatever is said toward trend of knowledge and civilization for creating Islamic unity and put before criticism and analysis and evaluation, five main pivots can be found in the thought and view of extremists among unity-seekers. And these five pivots in the end either directly or indirectly contradict fundamentals of Baraat. These five pivots are:

A - Taking benefit of a deviated thought, silence, an excuse to maintain Islamic demeanor?

It is thus said that:

“Is it possible to insult sanctities of one milliard Muslims and at the same time claim unity of Islam?”![304]

“No logic gives way nor allows reason in our being free to insult heads of Sunni sect using our public media and taking into service writers and speakers.

If we aim for oneness and unity of hearts we must abolish our practice from radio, television, meetings and gatherings and pulpits; whatever from these platforms is said and which wounds and injures feelings of Sunnis. Such a thing should be prohibited.”![305]

“To make insults, to be brazen faced and to fabricate statements or traditions which later can be attributed to the Prophet in vilification of leaders of Islam and breach sanctities of Islamic personalities respected by a milliard Muslims - is it a principle of Shia faith?”![306]

“Scolding, abusing and using foul language against those who have a position of respect and reverence among Muslims is against decorum and demeanor. It is an undesired, impolite and an indecent act and Imams of Ahle Bayt (a.s.) have prohibited it.”![307]

B - To show differences between Ali and Caliphs as friendly

They say:

“Whatever passed in the early of days of Islam and whatever passed after passing away of Prophet between Ali and reputed companions (of the Prophet) it was certainly kind of friendly differences…”[308]

“What I oppose is …changing in a statement, friendly differences that existed between Hazrat Ali (a.s.) and companions of Prophet into inimical differences.”![309]

C - Denial of Enmity in a sense of blame, to show relations were intimate between Ali and Caliph

Thus it is said:

“If be it compelling that our outer and inner phases should be different and our account in relation to early days of Islam is not clear before ourselves and God and we wish to stress on unity for the sake of interests and we think as if there existed enmity between Ali and Caliphs, we achieve nothing…”![310]

“As far as it concerns Ali and the three Caliphs particularly to Ali, he never behaved with his competitors inimically.”![311]

“Our elders and leaders, Ali, Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthman were not enemies of each other.”![312]

D - To Show Rulership Worthless from Ali’s Viewpoint

They say:

“Ali regarded power (executive) far below a worn-out shoe; on this score he cannot harbor avarice against Muslims.”![313]

“Ali was so high that he could not entertain hatred against any on account of an unworthy matter.”![314]

“The spirit of Ali was so high that he could not yield to hate a Muslim on ground of a worldly position.”![315]

E - Mending the Method of Shia Propaganda

They say:

“Our difficulty is in the method of our propaganda. The method that we have to describe Shiaism is in the first place a curse to Caliphs and companions. Therefore we can never make any progress”![316]

Closing Reminder

Ustad Sayyid Muhammad Dhiyabaadi writes:

“We know since the Ummah attributed by Islam and Quran, faces a joint enemy who wants to destroy the very foundation of religion reason dictates that the whole Ummah together with Shia and Sunni should campaign united in one row to defend existence of religion and themselves.

However this does not necessitate Shias to withdraw issue of Tawalla and Baraat. These two fundamentals are like life and death of Islam with Shias. It does not mean showing leniency to adversaries. At the stage of argument and research, or at the stage of preaching and propaganda in public meetings and common medias, or in position of teaching in educational centre and training of children and youths it must be maintained that belief of the other side should be respected. Unity must be preserved from getting injured. True belief could be kept untold. These are the stations where frankness and openness in speech could prove hurtful. Hence could be refrained. The next generation regarding the belief will remain in suspect and surmise.”[317]

“Very seriously, we must be mindful and closely advertent of Satan to not mislead us. There might appear many titles such as unity, co-ordination, respect to Islamic brotherhood and so forth. To take up common issues and leave singular elements, which are attractive of appearance but should not spoil the glitter of the pearl of our faith. Special care should be taken to see that pillars of faith among young generation might not be shaken or even destroyed. The matter of political unity may not be turned into a unity of beliefs. And by sorting, they could easily project the real, original and correct Islam in two wings - Shia and Sunni - in the minds of plain-hearted people who have no real information in the field. And both those wings are not real and although they would introduce to them as correct and original Islam of true and right path. Ultimately and consequently, the two main pillars of Baraat and Tawalla will fade out and decay totally. As such, the real Islam of Prophet Muhammad will vanish from the minds of Shias. Islam will fall down when these basic pillars have fallen. The eternal life of man will be exchanged at a very low cost that is the expansion of Islam and a long stretch of its government and political advances. All this is only fancy and imagination.”[318]

Discourse Six: Deviation in the Meaning of Divinely-Granted Caliphate of Ali


It is a sad and painful incident of deviation in Shia belief. The purpose was Islamic unity. Political and social movement of Sayyid Jamaluddin Asadabadi was the impetus and it was his idea that gave beginning to utterances like:

“The difference of the names of Ali and Umar should be set aside and attention must be directed to Caliphate.”[319]

Vast endeavors and extensive efforts of pupils and followers of School of Sayyid Jamal for putting into practice his aspirations have been silenced. It was a desire for an extensive Islamic Caliphate. Today there is no word of it except that:

“…The system of Caliphate with Sunni sect can be a ground for oneness of Muslims and all Muslim countries…”[320]

From one side followers of this thought and belief for attaining Islamic unity under a title of only way for pacifying and appeasing Shia-Sunni differences met with a hot welcome. This has been continuing since the time of Mashrota until today.

With attention to Sunni School in subject of Imamate and Caliphate in its prime stage, elements present in this school had to undergo a total purge. The very same thoughts of Sunni School in this ground among Shias were not common and were under a heavy criticism.

The purging elements related to this system of thought provide room for pro-Sunni elements to creep in the folds of Shia beliefs. The sensitiveness of Shias with regard to argument of Imamate and Caliphate gave a hand too.

However this erroneous thought with a productive faculty of errors had one fruit. And that was an influence of deviation in belief of Imamate.

This deviation gradually progressed to the extent of overturning the meaning and sense of Imamate during the presence of infallible Imams. Its black, dark shadow was cast on the Sun of Ghadeer and Caliphate of Ali. It took to itself various tendencies to an extent that even today we witness its deviation and wrong thinking in new molds and new models.

Criticism and Analysis

A walk into the park of thought of this group of continuing ‘Imamate and Caliphate’ and then a comparison of it with institute of Sunni thought[321] in this subject takes us to elements common in the outlooks of unity-seekers and Sunni beliefs[322] which are as follows:

First Conjecture: Imamate and Guardianship in Islam are only for the sake of Rulership!

In this respect, they say:

“In the pure and noble faith of Islam the subject of Imamate is not regarded as a part of the business to impart duties of administration, government, political and social affairs in the administration.”![323]

“Imamate is the same authority and the run of political affairs of Islamic Ummah.”![324]

“In Islam Imam means head of the government. His duties are repeatedly mentioned.”![325]

“The dispute between Shia and Sunni which has been continuing since centuries is on the issue of rulership.”![326]

“The holder of order (or the head) and the Islamic ruler means the executors of these two verses of Quran which is the duty on the part of Islamic governor…

If the Islamic Governor executes an Islamic order, the title ‘the head of affairs’ (Wali-e-Amr) can be applied to him.”![327]

“The executor of Islamic rules is called ‘head of affairs (Wali-e-Amr).”![328]

Second Conjecture: Rulership in Islam is an Elected post!

They say:

“The choice of appointing the ruler after passing away of Prophet is in the hands of people. It is not even in the hand of the Prophet.”![329]

“The choice of the ruler is an acknowledged right of the Ummah.”![330]

“To select an Imam is a special right of the people.”![331]

“The chief executive of Muslims is electoral. The qualities of this post are specified in Quran. Muslim in each term should select one according to these specifications.”![332]

“To select ‘the head of affairs’ (Wali-e-Amr) is a fixed right of the people. According to specifications, his duties are subsidiary. It remains as long as Quran exists.”![333]

“To maintain a Quranic government is a responsibility on all Muslims. The ruler of Muslims is selected among them with opinion of masses.”![334]

“The issue of Caliphate is a national issue. To fix a ruler is in the hands of the people.”![335]

“The public opinion in an Islamic government is a basic element for appointing the ruler.”![336]

“People have a right to appoint a person who possesses conditions befitting a ruler to the post of a guardian and vest him with rulership.”![337]

How to utilize these Conjectures to Create Deviation in the Meaning of Divinely-given Caliphate of Ali

So far we came to know how unity-seekers borrowed the thought from Sunni school and how they exerted efforts toward dissipating Sunni outlook about Imamate, Guardianship and Caliphate. We also came to know their basic idea, which runs as follows:

“To bring down the high station of Imamate to the level of social status of rulership and to believe it to be electoral.”!

It is obvious that this outlook is useful for creating Islamic unity and to create a sort of coherence between the two. This idea avoids the contrast as it overruns the right of Ali to Caliphate.

From one side we witness deviation in the sense of Caliphate, which by the Quranic text is attributed to Ali; a deviation, which has found a place among Shias besides giving a covering to wrong and impure idea.

This deviation has started from two conjectures, which are:

Conjecture A: Deviation in the Sense of Guardianship by Separating Imamate and Rulership

They say:

“We in very foundation consider infallible Imams as authority of God. We believe them as a guide to the people. We believe them as true narrators of God’s commandments and orders. We have faith in them as protectors of religion from any deviation or perversion. Besides, we trust them as true and correct interpreters of divine decrees and Quranic text and traditions of Prophet. As such, this position is far higher than Imamate in the sense of rulership. Of course in their presence it becomes obligatory on the Ummah to regard them as Caliphs and rulers and to Salawati) (Sources of Islamic jurisprudence in Islamic Government), Vol. 2, Section 4. Proof of occurrence of Caliphate by selection by people, Pg. 299

obey them. If they did not attain place or position of Imamate the high office (of Imamate) is reserved and saved for them.”![338]

“The position of leadership and guidance with the position of rulership and Guardianship are two.”![339]

“This matter has no relation to issue of rulership.”![340]

“Prophethood and Guardianship differ from each other in their sense and sum. Between Guardianship and Prophethood, difference is from earth to the sky. Prophethood is in the climes of the angelic domain while Guardianship is a social and democratic matter.”![341]

Conjecture B: Deviation in the Sense of Text following Deviation in the Meaning of Imamate

They say:

“The manifest religion of Islam has specified certain conditions for Imam. These conditions are necessary for guidance of people and executing divine rules by the ruler who in the religious terms is called Imam. The Islamic ruler should possess these conditions.

Knowledge, piety, decorum, courage, bravery and generosity are main conditions. The Prophet, from the very start, wanted that his religion should be established on a foundation, which could last as long the world exists. Ali whom friends and foes acknowledged as a perfect and most befitting person in the Ummah was introduced by the Prophet as Imam, ruler and a model. The Prophet asked Muslims to obey him. There are many tributes. A few can be referred here. The last of them is Ghadeer Khumm. The Prophet declared him (Ali) as his successor and Caliph after his death.”![342]

“The biggest issue related to passing away of Prophet is his succession as a leader of Muslims like the Prophet. This matter is very much important particularly for people of thought and contemplation. Also it comes much in discussion. But more than people the Prophet himself, the great leader of Muslims, attaches much importance to it. To him it is a matter of life and death. In the matter of Caliphate, there are two very important things. One: Whose personality could be suitable and befitting to occupy the place of the Prophet?

The leader of Islam (the Prophet) has witnessed in the spirit of his cousin greatness and seraphic decorum. This quality he did not see in any of his companions whether related to him or otherwise. The genius and extraordinary capability and the holy wars fought sincerely became the ground for the Prophet to express his admiration for Ali in most brilliant words and appreciating language on many occasions. He praised Ali and showed his position to the people more magnified.”![343]

“Although after passing away of Prophet, Muslims had a right to form a consulting council. However it was also a demanding matter to give consideration to his will in principle. If the purpose of forming a consulting council was to fulfill God’s decree who could be other than the Prophet himself who founded the school and brought the Message. He had named the candidate nominated by God.

The consulting body is to execute the will. When an issue is recommended by Prophet the task of consulting body becomes easy. The way too is shown to the body.”![344]

Result of this Manipulation

The divine Caliphate and the right of Ali according to the text of Quran and rightful belief of Shia in this respect is so interpreted, on the basis of opinion, that the right is overridden by wrong. The truth vanished in elected Caliphate. It is reduced to a rulership fabricated by wrong conclusions.

They say:

“There are several kinds of peoples’ governments. The leader loved by people is the tongue of the people. Whatever he says is the word of the heart of people and deserves to be appointed for succession. In such a case, the will of the people is acted upon. The pleasure and satisfaction of the people is gained. Such a selection secures peoples’ desire. The appointment of Ali in Ghadeer was such.”![345]

Deviated Repercussion of these Conjectures


First Wrong Result: Caliphate is not a Monopoly of Amirul Momineen (a.s.)!


So they have said:

“Conditions laid down in Islam for head of affairs (Wali-e-Amr) are briefed in this sentence. The most suitable and befitting person for the post of a ruler must be selected.”![348]

“The infallible Imams have two positions. Most important of all is they are guides, leaders and authorities from God. They are chosen ones to interpret and explain God’s rulings, decrees and what descended on the Prophet.

The other one is rulership and Guardianship. It is compulsory upon the Ummah to pay allegiance to and obey them. Since they are superior in knowledge than all others, people must choose and obey them.”![349]

“In this fact there is no doubt that Ali was the most deserving person to succeed the Prophet. Neither Shia nor Sunni have any doubt in this regard.”![350]

“The person of Amirul Momineen Ali (a.s.) was more deserving than others for rulership. It is not in the sense that Caliphate is his belonging nor in the sense that Caliphate is prohibited for others. But the sense here is eligibility and the qualities - in which he stands first and above all.”![351]

Second Wrong Result: Caliph cannot be Exclusively Ali after the Prophet

They say:

“Rulership and Caliphate in the sense of administration, as it is said, is his (Ali’s) right. Inspite of his acceptance it is prohibited to others. However it is not such an important post.

Rather Caliphate and rulership is among his (Ali’s) positions. When he is not present or he did not become Caliph another one can be made a candidate or can be appointed.”![352]

“In such a case the second obligation becomes mandatory. The formation of Caliphate at consensus of Muhajireen and Ansaar becomes final and legitimate.”![353]

Third Wrong Result: Usurpation of Ali’s Caliphate is no more in Question!

It is said:

“Although he (Ali) rightfully considered himself more suitable and deserving, he did not consider others’ Caliphate infidelity or usurpation.”![354]

Fourth Wrong Result: Caliphate of Caliphs is not illegitimate!

Such is said:

“In selecting the Caliph through consultation, companions of Prophet maintained rules of God and carried out Islamic regulations.”![355]

“After passing away of Prophet immediately, companions of Prophet thought about Caliphate and formed a government of religion. Thus Caliphate of Caliphs came into being.”![356]

Warning: Propagation of these Conjectures in the Name of Open-mindedness

The attraction of the name of election of the people and its resemblance to Western democracy - the foregone conjectures have found a place in attention of open-minded persons of the society.

Such is said:

“In accordance with sense and contents of Quranic verses and traditions and according to words of Ali himself (which are in plenty) the owner of rulership and the executors are people themselves. Islamic government is a democratic or public government.”![357]

“The appointment or dismissal of an Imam or head of government must take place with choice and consultation of people…!”

According to clear texts, repeated statements and practice of Prophet and other four personages of the cloak, government of Muslims is government of people themselves. It is formed by their consultation. So the Sunni brothers will have no objection.”![358]

Relation of Imamate and Caliphate from Shia Viewpoint

Ustad Murtuza Mutahhari writes in this respect:

“…an issue in the chapter of Imamate is government. In other words, what is the status of government after the Prophet?

Is it on shoulders of people; and is it for people themselves to appoint a government for themselves or is it on the Prophet? Whether he appointed a ruler when he is no more?

Since recently, they design the issue in a way that it strikes to mind the idea of Sunni sect to the effect that it appears normal and naturally common.

The wrong framing of the issue:

They frame the subject in a way as if we have a problem by name of government. We want to see in the name of government as to what is the government in the view of Islam?...[359]

If we pose Imamate in a plain way at the level of a government and say, it means government, we shall see the attraction exceeds what Sunni say and goes beyond what Shias say…[360]

We should not commit such a mistake to imagine a government at the very name of Imamate. As a result the issue, let it be however plain, this branch that has come into being should not lace it. This might occur to us as to who should take over the charge of government. He who wants to be a governor should he be superior to all others? Probably he who becomes a governor could be relatively superior and not absolutely. This is because we have treated this issue as of little importance. This is a mistake.

Today this mistake is often repeated.

As Imamate is mentioned, our mind goes to the meaning of government. Government is a branch - a very little side of Imamate.[361]

We say there is some other issue among Shias. If we fix that issue, the question of government too is settled. We believe in a position or office, which is immediately after prophethood or its subordination. In the presence or existence of that office, the issue of government comes into its fold. In other words issue of government is encompassed in existence of Prophet. Similarly in the presence of Imam - in the sense, which Shia says - the issue of government is itself in existence.[362]

The subject of Imamate itself entails prophethood. But it does not mean that its position is far below something close to prophethood - in its similarity. The great prophets in addition to their prophethood they had this office of Imamate too.[363]

Imamate is a phenomenon of prophethood exactly to the level of prophethood at its highest grades. It is such among Shias.[364]

Prophethood itself is an entity wherein exist thousands of things. The Prophet’s existence makes Muslims needless of a ruler because he is the ruler. Government was one of the affairs of prophethood…[365]

But it was not bestowed upon him by the people. This was a right given him by God, because he was a superior human being.

Since he was the interpreter of God’s commandments and a moral link with the unseen world he had rulership too over the people…[366]

When we accept such a fact there arises no question of a ruler as long as the Prophet exists. He has a dimension beyond a human being. Likewise, as long as exists the Imam there arises no question as to who is to rule…[367]

From Shia viewpoint, question of government is same as it was in lifetime of Prophet. He has an exceptional government.

As the question of government does not rise in lifetime of Prophet, so it is in lifetime of Imam. The meaning of Imam as it is in belief of Shia, rescinds the issue of government. The issue of government is a branch issue and a dependent one…[368]

Therefore we must not regard issue of Imamate simple. We should not treat it as a worldly position.

Among Shias, Imamate is a living issue. In presence of Imam, there is no room for other as in the case of lifetime of Prophet.

And the Prophet had appointed Ali for Imamate. He who is Imam necessarily governs too. The Prophet has mentioned ‘rulership’ in addition to ‘he is the Imam after me.’”[369]

He writes under the heading: ‘In presence of infallible there is no room for selection’ thus:

“The subject of Imamate with regard to leadership and government is: Now like the days of Prophet there exists an infallible. The Prophet had appointed his successor who was not to the level of other persons because his level was too high. And with regard to his capabilities and standards he was exceptional like the Prophet himself. Therefore there arises no question of consultation and selection.

In the days of the Prophet, no one said that the Prophet was a Messenger and a recipient of divine revelation. So the government must be framed by consultation. People should come and cast their opinion whether to select someone else or the Prophet himself for the post of ruler. But people thought that the Prophet is above ordinary persons and that he has links with the world of revelation. Now after the Prophet there is no place for these sayings. But one thing is undeniable. Having had an infallible person purged from mistakes and perfect in earthly and heavenly knowledge, should we go to another one instead?

Besides, Ali was an Imam. So the worldly post of leadership too will be his lot all by itself. The Prophet has explained this aspect too. The Prophet referred this position to Ali because Ali had the other position also.”[370]