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Cypress

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About Cypress

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  • Birthday 03/11/1975

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    Somerville, MA, USA

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  1. Ugh, Hunzai. That man is a problem.
  2. Basic Questions For Ismailis

    This is bizarre. Ja'far as-Sadiq was a remarkable scholar and man but he did not run around making miracles. Neither did Musa al-Kadhim, who Twelvers consider his successor. Both were solid, kind, scholarly men who inspired the community, not rainmakers or miracle-makers. Proof? He is the appointed successor, he has the nass, his leadership reinforces belief. As an Ismaili, I don't believe in the Mahdi. This requires me to believe there was an Imam in Occultation according to Twelver beliefs, which of course I do not. There have been times of Occultation for Ismaili Imams, but these periods were literally times when the Imam was in hiding for protection, not mystical events. So I don't, can't have an answer for that. Imam al-Mahdi is a Twelver idea. Our twelfth Imam was Muhammad al-Qaa'im biAmri l-Lah, second Caliph-Imam of the Fatimids, who was born in Syria and then moved to al-Mahdiya, Tunisia, where he ruled until his death. As for the Hadith of the Twelve - Ismailis don't accept it as valid, nor have they, as a reference to the Imamate. Why would the leadership of the Imamate end? What kind of sense does that make - God gives us a guide to follow for all time, then they stop coming?
  3. Other Madhab Besides Jafari

    The Amman Message identifies the following schools of fiqh: Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi'i, Hanbali; Ja'fari; Zaidi; Ibadi; Zahiri. Ismailis of all bent are Ja'fari, but Zaydi Shi'a are not. Ja'fari fiqh is different depending on which Twelver scholar you follow or if you follow one the Nizari Imam ("the Aqa Khan") or the Da'is of the Must'alis (Bohras, etc.). This is because a long time has passed and there are doctrinal differences concerning who can affect fiqhly changes - we Shi'a believe the Imams lead fiqh and our Imamates differ. Ibadis are technically Khawaarij, but not like you've heard of; they are present in Oman and on a tiny island off of Tunis. Zahiris are rare but essentially old-school "Qur'an-only literalist" Sunnis. You can read more on wikipedia if you query "madhhab".
  4. Basic Questions For Ismailis

    The A'immah are considered divine agents, which isn't the same as being divine. One indicates God gives guidance, the other is a ghuluww idea that breaks tawhid and I am sure that you did not mean that. Of course we believe that the Imam is guided; that's what an Imam is. But an Imam isn't actually divine anymore than Muhammad was. We Shi'a are not Christians! a. The Imam is faultless in matters of faith, but still a human being. b. He's divinely guided like any other Imam in Shi'i Islam. c. Nass d. He has no magical powers, no. He does convey blessings, but he doesn't, you know, cure the sick with magic powers. (He does employ a large stable of doctors to aid the impoverished ill, however. :-) ) Is that what you mean? Not like one of those Christian revivalists who claims to be able to make people with HIV well and the paralysed walk... that's not the Imam's job. Plus, if the A'immah had magic powers, they wouldn't have been imprisoned and murdered so often, amirite? Besides, reading Ja'far as-Sadiq works makes it crystal clear that he was a first-rate mind with no patience for that kind of nonsense. (Musa al-Kazim as well, although I do not accept him as an Imam. A brilliant man, though.)
  5. Are Ismaili muslims?

    We do not abandon the Qur'an, we simply don't have the same fiqh. Fiqh =/= Qur'an; that's why there are eight living schools (all eight have members that signed the Amman Message). Maalikis don't eat shellfish and believe the saliva of a dog is najas; other Sunnis don't agree. Is this a matter of Qur'an? What about wearing the beard? That's not a Qur'anic matter, but one of tradition (Sunnah). We are not Sunni; thus we adhere to the fiqh of the Imam, not the Sunnah.Prayer is enjoyed thrice daily in the Qur'an; we therefore make prayer according to our fiqh thrice daily. Not drinking alcohol or eating pork is mentioned in the Qur'an; therefore we do neither. I don't know why everyone thinks Ismailis are crazed heretics, we read the Qur'an and follow the A'immah just as Twelvers do, only we disagree about the nature of the Imamate (that it did not end with Occultation). The rest is not hard to understand. Also, we don't follow religion just because other people do it. Most Muslims are Sunni and follow the tradition (Sunnah); we are Shi'a, we don't do that. We follow the A'immah's guidance. Nowadays everyone wants to be holier-than-thou Wahhabis and wear short pants and use miswak and wear sandals, but that doesn't mean everyone should listen to them. Should we start circumcising our women because it is a (Jahili) custom of other Muslims? No. We follow the guidance of the Imam and the Qur'an. Remember Ghadiru l-Khumm: this gave nass to Ali as Imam. I'm not sure I understand your question about how God will judge us: it's in the Qur'an about az-Zalzalah, isn't it?
  6. Zoroastrian Monotheist?

    Most scholars in Twelverism hold they are actually Ahl al-Bayt, AFAIK. Sunnis vary, but I think that has more to do with a lack of contact with them, as they are, as noted above, Persian in origin and present as well in Gujarat and the UK. They rarely hold them to be pagans, and that's usually just the whackjobs who also hold the Shi'a to be pagans. :-)
  7. Basic Questions For Ismailis

    1. The Imam is no different from the 12 A'immah of the Twelvers: the Imamate passes down through the Fatimid line (descended from Fatima via Ali). He is not divine. If you believe in the idea of the 12 A'immah's imamates, then you already understand how the imamate works in Ismailism. 2. He is not divine. 3. The Imam is the leader of the faith and he helps us understand tawhid. We Shi'i Muslims believe the A'immah do this. The difference is that we do not believe in an Imam in Occultation who consults with scholars, we have our Imam in front of us to teach us the heart of the faith. I'm not sure why these principles are being brought up, because Shi'i tenets are all the same. Our A'immah are different lineages, but the principles are identical: the role of the Imam and the Imamate, the notion of the baatin, the heredity of the lineage from Faatimah, the importance of the statement at Khumm, etc. There's absolutely no difference between what Twelvers and Ismailis believe about the Imamate, only about how it works in practice. AND THE IMAM IS NOT DIVINE. That's a backhanded takfir you got going on there, and I don't appreciate it. Takfir is haraam. I remind you again of the Amman message. Check its signatories - Sistani, Khameini, Najafi, as-Sadr, Lankarani, al-Fayyad, al-Hakim, the Imam al-Khoei Foundation and Fadlallah are Twelver scholars who signed it alongside Shah Karim, al-Imam al-Hadhir of the Ismailis.
  8. And the Nizari 100% believe Ali was Imam, YA ALI MADAD is our cry.
  9. Are Ismaili muslims?

    Let me precede all my statements with the following: I mean no disrespect. Far be it from me to judge another's religious practices - I have friends who are Sunnis, Jews and even Twelver, and of course many Christians. I don't judge when I say these things, nor assert that you are wrong - I merely state what I practice and what the faith teaches. My close friend, a Sunni woman, veils and I have full respect for her principles on this subject and never try to change her mind on her beliefs, practices or the like. I serve her halaal according to her Maaliki fiqh when she eats with me. My Jewish friends give me their chametz (food haraam during the holy season) to store for them and/or eat during Passover. I don't judge, and Nizaris do not believe in missionary activity - the AKF, which is one of the largest charities in the world, and operates in underserved communities all over Africa and Eurasia, is so strictly non-religious that most recipients of its seed moneys have no idea that it is attached to the Ismaili community's khums in the first place. You take as given the laws of the Twelvers to be the laws of the Ismailis. Our fiqh developed just as yours did; we simply disagree on some of the points. Since our Imam is living and provides guidance in fiqh, we do not necessarily maintain the same laws and standards you maintain from the middle ages. In short, we believe our faith is living and its outward appearance changes with time and science while our inward faith remains the same. Twelvers are called "esotericists" or baatini in the face of Sunni zaahirism, while we are the baatin-e baatini, the esotericists of the esotericists. The Imam is called Nur, the light of 3aql. For example, many people ask why we do not veil. In an official capacity as Imam - what we call a Farman, in this case issued publicly, which is not true for most and you will see many things claimed about Ismailis from our "farmans" that are not from them -, the current Imam stated, "Le Coran établit une nette différence entre les femmes-esclaves - celles qui n'existent que dans le regard des hommes, par leurs parures - et les femmes libres. Les femmes doivent être libres, de nos jours, responsables de leur conduite. Il n'est pas question de se cacher, pas plus que de se parer." It's in my sig, actually. It means roughly: "My Grandfather was the first to push women to cease veiling. The Qur'an established a crucial difference between female slaves - those who exist only through the regard of men, for their desires - and free women. Women have [all] became free, in our time, responsible for their conduct. There is no issue of hiding oneself or making oneself look good anymore." There is also a prohibition on wearing black. Why? Because it is the color of our oppressors, those who murdered and martyred us and our A'immah time after time, and it is the color of mourning, but we do not mourn as the Twelvers - so many A'immah have been martyred, but the Imamate remains so we do not mourn. This attends to our lack of beards, our lack of highwaters and sandals, and our preference for toothbrushes rather than the sticks that were used as such in ancient times. How do we pray? We recite a ritual prayer three times per day - a number mentioned in the Qur'an, in case someone gets feisty - and it is comprised of Qur'anic passages and salutations and praise to God, the A'immah and the Ummah. We perform sajdah, but not in the same way or number of times as in Twelver fiqh. We also do not use a block of earth from Karbala, as again Karbala is only one sorrowful time out of many. We survive the oppression and thrive, which is why many Twelvers become angry when they learn we do not have the same vivid, moving reactions and performances during Muharram. They don't understand that we mourn, but differently. In community prayer, we have egalitarian prayer leadership - lead by both women and men. Gender is not relevant to community prayer.
  10. Are Ismaili muslims?

    We're not "agha khanis", we're "Nizaris", just like you aren't Ayatullahis but "Twelvers" when outsiders (politely) speak of you. Aqa Khan is a title of nobility awarded to a recent ancestor of the current al-Imam al-Hadhir. We perform prayers, they just look a little different. Still counts as salat, but we tend to use non-Arab terms for it. We perform it according to the teachings of the A'immah, which is not in agreement with Twelver practice but that doesn't mean we are not following the guidance of Islam. We just disagree about things, like how the Imamate did not (could not!) end.
  11. Hi I would like to have a little chat about homosexuality with you. Im shia and very concerned about homosexualities punishment, I was a libertarian before and as I can see in you profile you are too so I would like to know more about it.

    1. talib_fex

      talib_fex

      fexnatural@gmail.com

  12. Fire-worshippers

    The Arabic term is a borrowing from the Middle Persian term for a kind of priest. English also borrowed this word, magus or "mage".
  13. SALAMUN ALAIKUM WARAMATULLAH

    HOW R U AND FAMILY?

    IN SOFT GLEAMING NIGHT OF STARS

    MAY ALL UR DREAMS COM TRUE

    MAY EVERY STAR OF EVERY NIGHT

    BRING LOV N JOY 2 U

    HAPPY B'DAY 2 U...

    """LIVE LIKE ALI DIE LIKE HUSAIN""

  14. yer what? your account is still active...why did they ban you?

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