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In the Name of God بسم الله

Zainuu

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The notion of love has it's roots in the trait of kindness. Only a kind person can understand and exhibit love. Now, kind here is not someone who gets delighted after seeing a baby or a dog and starts adoring it. Neither it is someone who starts crying everytime after watching something bad happening to someone. So, what is kindness? A kind person is the one who is bent upon helping anyone with whatever problem one has. He is thirsty of such people who need help. An extremely kind person doesn't want anyone to ask him to help. He feels ashamed if such a thing happens. So, kindness is the pure trait of helping different beings in their works with utter selflessness. Only faith can depict such traits. As Ayatullah Shaheed Murtadha Mutahhari writes in his book, "It is religious faith alone which, above all, respects Truth, honors justice, encourages kindness". So, kindness is a spiritual trait. As this trait becomes more and more apparent within the realm of spirit; it indicates towards a strong, inevitable and beautiful reality. This is called love. It seems, overtly, as if kindness causes love. But no, it is actually love that is the cause of this kind behavior. Love is a feeling while kindness is a trait.
Love, though is an extreme force, not easy to control but it has levels. It seems as if it ascends from relative realities to absolute reality. Actually, it breaks down from absolute reality to relative bounds. At the lowest level of this hierarchy is human to human love. This has no essence of itself. It's core lies in faith only. This is just a symbol. Despite being very limited and quite less, it exists. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has said, "Allah has divided kindness into 100 parts. Out of which 1 part is induced in all humanity." So, the love amongst the humans is basically, 100th part of the entire phenomenon. Amazing. This love can be seen everywhere and everyone has experienced it. May Allah let every person have a taste of love. Love of a mother for her child, a father for his child, among siblings, friends, family relatives, husband and wife etc. It doesn't even matter how they are related or is their even any relationship or not. Love is independent of any relationship, distance or any material dimension. It can be resembled in different ways but love doesn't depend upon it's symbol. At this point, a human mind starts to tremble. Because this feeling is incomprehensible and unpercievable. He tries to break and kill all the false perceptions that might be their.

Love, as I said, has no physical dimension. Though, a human mind lagging the ability to understand it, might mistake it (and it happens very often). False notions are created which shame the truth and pure character of love. Carnal desires related to lust and greed always wander in a human mind. But problem occurs when these satanic thoughts are confused or assumed wrongly as love. From this point, this spiritual notion gets materialized and humiliated. This happens to such an extent that as a result it stops the progress of the spirit of a human being. It makes a person blind towards the reality of love — which is progressive — and stops the journey of soul towards it's ultimate destiny. Human love is just a medium to reach the divine and absolute reality of love but greed makes a person feel as if human love itself is divine and he has found our god in the form of that person or being we love in this material world. So, the final result of this false notion is infidelity. Here is the difference between both. The fake love vs real love. One is destructive to an extent that it directs you to hell and the other might help you reach heaven without any punishment. 

Heaven and hell? Where did that come from? Yes, as I said, Love is truth. Truth is love. And it is divine and absolute. If a human being on the path of love and kindness doesn't recognize Allah or as a result of love, his faith doesn't reach closer to certainty, then he is trapped in a false notion. Above the level of love is worship which is the last. Love is a consequence of the manifestation of divinity (Maarefat e Ilaahi). As I said love doesn't combines, it breaks down. When we practice taqwa, adhere to our faith, earn knowledge, struggle, stay patient and thus our counted amongst the guided ones; we see the beauty of Allah through the eyes of our heart. It amazes us and turns us crazy. 
Maula Ali (عليه السلام) says when Asked by his companion Dhalib al Yemani, "Yaa Amir ul Momineen (عليه السلام), Have you seen your Lord?" Maula says, "Would I worship that which I do not see? When Asked, "How do you see him"; Amir up Momineen (عليه السلام) says, "Eyes do not see him with direct witnessing. But hearts percieve him through the realities of authentic belief".

Seeing the beauty of Allah though he is unseen. This is Maarefah of Allah. This maarefah from worship and a constant search of being, causes love. But love pays back. Love increases the power of worship and makes it more extreme. It beautifies the already beautiful worship of Allah. It makes a person forget this world. It makes him turn away from this world. Such a human being who is drowned in this extreme love of his beloved (Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) ) is dying to meet his Lord as is also clear from the munajaat of Maula Ali (عليه السلام). Love of Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and AhlulBayt (عليه السلام) for Allah and it's depiction in history is the only way we can fascinate ourselves  with the beauty of this feeling. Such a person, loves everything associated with Allah. He can sacrifice himself for the sake of Allah. Not only himself, his entire existence without any hesitation. It is written about Maula Ali (عليه السلام) that when some muslims came to the Holy Prophet (عليه السلام) to complain about Ali (عليه السلام), the Prophet (عليه السلام) said, "Don't complain about Ali, he is crazy (Majnoon) in love of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى).

Now, removing all conseptualization let me make it clear through the intercession of AhlulBayt (عليه السلام). Love is, when a man sleeps for the sake of Allah on the bed of The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) even after knowing that he is surrounded by swords. Love is, when Fatima (SA) spends days in hunger and nights in prayer of the Almighty but never complains to anyone about her pains. Love is, when this woman (Fatima (SA)) stands like a mountain between his husband — Wali of Allah — and the oppressors who were burning her house to defend Haq. Love is, when a woman(Fatima (SA) again) being a child accompanies her father and supports him when he is attacked, laughed off and taken lightly by the meccans for the message he conveys and as a result is called as Umm Abiha. Love is, when a man (Imam Hussain (عليه السلام) ) who has committed himself to sacrifice, after sacrificing his whole family, with his body bathed in blood puts himself into the last prostration (sujood) to his lord. Love is, when a woman (Zainab (SA) ) despite all what she saw, despite the chains around her body, despite the thirst killing her throat and the humility she beared as a consequence of her veil being taken away; despite no one, except her ill nephew, standing for her, speaks so loud and so clear that the throne of the tyrant of that time and everytime and his system from top to bottom trembles and breaks into pieces. Love is, when this woman is asked in a disrespectful tone, "Did you see what Allah did to you?" She says, "I saw nothing but the beauty of Allah ((سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى))".

I cannot go ahead of this. So, it becomes clear that love is only for Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) and from Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). It resembles kindness and sacrifice. It actually needs sacrifice to flourish in every heart. It needs sacrifice as it's own resemblance. It needs sacrifice for the success of human spirit. Not only from an individualistic stand point because sacrifice has an impact on masses. So, here comes the importance of the greatest effect of love on a soul which is the spirit of sacrifice. Like Ibrahim (عليه السلام) did of his son. Like Lady Hajra (عليه السلام) did of her calm life with her husband and accepted to stay in a desert relying only on her beloved (Allah). 

So, sacrifice is the greatest symbol of love. And what is the greatest example of sacrifice? Karbala. Can you imagine a person who says to his companions that you will be martyred, your heads will be slaughtered and raised on lances? Who says: 'Leave me alone to die as my enemies need me and not you.' ? But however he may insist, his companions don't move. They are seeing themselves cut into pieces but our eager to go to the battle ground. Who cannot be stunned by such conviction? Who are these people? Who are we in front of such people? We follow our rubbish lame desires. Are we blind or is the history of such people not clear enough? What if we start to follow Weheb al Kalbi (رضي الله عنه), who got martyred and slaughtered while he just got married. What if the woman become like her wife, who saw her smart, young and wonderful husband getting slaughtered in front of her? What will go wrong if mother's take pride in sacrificing their children for the sake of Allah, wherever and whenever possible instead of pampering them and teaching them to become coward? Have you ever seen a sacrifice of a 6 months child? Can anyone imagine herself in place of Bibi Umm Rabab (رضي الله عنه)? Have you seen a mother who prays to Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) and prostrates in front of Allah out of thankfulness when she hears the news that both of her dear sons got martyred? She doesn't even cry on them. She barely asks about their dead bloodied bodies. Allahu Akber! What can one say? Just doing this conversation and penning  down this glorification of love is making me tremble. Karbala's example is unique just like our religion and the holy figures that stand as divine guides for us. Though Karbala carries the legacy of simple human beings like us. But can you see how love changes everything? Imam Hussain (عليه السلام) created friends of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) out of human beings. His Caravan of sacrifice led the greatest example of divine love humanity will ever see.

What can we take for us from here besides humility as lovers and shame as worshippers. Humility about our weak hearts who don't nourish the feeling of love to such an extent. Shame that our prostrations, if even as much as the stars in the sky, cannot equate to the millionth of the prostrations of the Martyrs of Karbala on the plains of Karbala. But their is a glimmer of hope. It's true that love of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) is far beyond from the realm of imagination and we cannot sustain it so easily. But their is hope. Hope that comes from AhlulBayt (عليه السلام). Hope that takes an afflicted, painful heart full of regret in the camp of Yazid, from his calm abode to Imam Hussain (عليه السلام) within a night. Hope that makes us quit our food and drinks on the 10th of Ashura (those who genuinely do) and makes us cry and vail for Imam Hussain (عليه السلام). As this hope remains, it is developed through love. Love for Ahl ul Bayt (عليه السلام). Love for Imam Hussain (عليه السلام). If we make efforts, it is not difficult. When Hurr ibn Yazid al Riyahi (رضي الله عنه) changed his fate in one night by developing all these traits, realising all these instincts; why can't we? He developed love for Imam Hussain (عليه السلام). This is intercession. When Imam (عليه السلام) becomes your beloved, your destiny, he will divert your path towards the divine love of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). The notion of mourning the martyrdom and misery of Imam Hussain (عليه السلام) opens the door of love, devotion and self sacrifice within the soul of a human being. It's so deep that it can revive a dead soul. 


Imam Khomeini has said, "Keep the event of Karbala and the holy name of Imam Hussain (عليه السلام) alive. For by it's survival, Islam will survive." So, don't miss these mourning events. Marsiya and Nauha recited for our beloved Imam (عليه السلام). You will automatically notice that Allah has changed you. You will experience that change at the end of Muharram. As if some new hidden realities have been shown to you. Even if you read down entire books of Hadith and Qur'an and pray day and night, the effect on your soul will not be as swift as contemplating on the tragedy of Karbala and the life of Ahlul Bayt (عليه السلام). Qur'anic verses are beautified by the character of Ahlulbayt (عليه السلام). Qur'an is a book and it's visual reality is the life of Ahlulbayt (عليه السلام). If you have love for Ahlulbayt (عليه السلام), you'll fall in love with Qur'an automatically. Falling in love with both of them will let you gain Maarefat of The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and his Maarefat to the love of Allah. When this divine love will be in your heart, it will break down into infinite denominations and will fall as kindness upon every creature of Allah. In this way, you'll find yourself in love with everything. As Imam Hussain (عليه السلام) says, "O Allah, What did he find who lost you? What did he lose who found you?" [Dua Arafah]. 


Start your journey of love and immerse yourself in this ocean of love. Though this is nothing in comparison to what an explanation of love should be and my words are not enough to express it. Even if I write what all encompasses my mind, I won't be able to convey it completely.

Edited by Zainuu

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      Irtidad in the linguistic sense refers to ‘turning back from something’. It has been used with this meaning in a number of verses such as:
      فَلَمَّا أَن جَاء الْبَشِيرُ أَلْقَاهُ عَلَى وَجْهِهِ فَارْتَدَّ بَصِيرًا قَالَ أَلَمْ أَقُل لَّكُمْ إِنِّي أَعْلَمُ مِنَ اللّهِ مَا لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ
      (i) So when the caravan herald [fore-runner] came he threw it on his face so he returned to seeing, he said: did I not say to you that I know from Allah what ye do not (12:96)
      قَالَ الَّذِي عِندَهُ عِلْمٌ مِّنَ الْكِتَابِ أَنَا آتِيكَ بِهِ قَبْلَ أَن يَرْتَدَّ إِلَيْكَ طَرْفُكَ
      (ii) The one who had knowledge of a part of the Book said: I will bring it to you before your glance returns back to you [i.e. you blink and open your eyes again] (27:40)
      مُهْطِعِينَ مُقْنِعِي رُءُوسِهِمْ لاَ يَرْتَدُّ إِلَيْهِمْ طَرْفُهُمْ وَأَفْئِدَتُهُمْ هَوَاء
      (iii) Racing ahead, their heads bowed down, their glances not returning back to them [i.e. unblinking] and their hearts void (14:43)
      Whenever Irtidad from the Diin - ‘turning back’ from the Diin i.e. apostasy in the technical sense is meant, the Qur`an qualifies it by explicitly mentioning Diin.
      يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ مَن يَرْتَدَّ مِنكُمْ عَن دِينِهِ فَسَوْفَ يَأْتِي اللّهُ بِقَوْمٍ يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ
      (i) O you who believe, whoever turns back from his Diin from among you then Allah will bring about a people whom He loves and they love Him (5:54)
      وَمَن يَرْتَدِدْ مِنكُمْ عَن دِينِهِ فَيَمُتْ وَهُوَ كَافِرٌ فَأُوْلَئِكَ حَبِطَتْ أَعْمَالُهُمْ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَالآخِرَةِ
      (ii) And whoever among you turns back on his Diin and dies whilst being a Kafir then those are they whose deeds have been nullified in the world and the hereafter (2:217)
      It is clear that the narrations about the Irtidad of the Sahaba are not qualified by Diin. To understand that meaning from it would require further proof.
       
      The Chosen Interpretation
      The Irtidad in the narrations should be understood [in light of other narrations] as people turning away, after the messenger of Allah صلى الله عليه وآله, from what they had made incumbent on themselves in his صلى الله عليه وآله lifetime, when they gave the Bay`a to Ali b. Abi Talib as the leader of the believers i.e. Irtidad from Wilaya not apostasy from Islam. 
      Instead, they decided to give the Bay`a to someone else because of expediency and other reasons. This was a betrayal of epic proportions that opened up the door of misguidance and innovation in the Diin, however, they had not exited the apparent Islam, nor were all on the same level of liability for this.
      This interpretation is aided by the following texts:
      أبي جعفر عليه السلام قال: كان الناس أهل ردة بعد النبي صلى الله عليه وآله إلا ثلاثة. فقلت: ومن الثلاثة؟ فقال: المقداد بن الأسود، وأبو ذر الغفاري، وسلمان الفارسي، رحمة الله وبركاته عليهم، ثم عرَف أناسٌ بعدَ يسير. وقال: هؤلاء الذين دارت عليهم الرحا وأبوا أن يبايعوا، حتى جاؤوا بأمير المؤمنين مكرَهاً فبايع، وذلك قوله تعالى: وَمَا مُحَمَّدٌ إِلاَّ رَسُولٌ قَدْ خَلَتْ مِن قَبْلِهِ الرُّسُلُ أَفَإِن مَّاتَ أَوْ قُتِلَ انقَلَبْتُمْ عَلَى أَعْقَابِكُمْ وَمَن يَنقَلِبْ عَلَىَ عَقِبَيْهِ فَلَن يَضُرَّ اللّهَ شَيْئًا وَسَيَجْزِي اللّهُ الشَّاكِرِينَ
      (i) [al-Kafi] Abi Ja`far عليه السلام said: the people were the people of Ridda after the prophet صلى الله عليه وآله except three. I said: who are the three? He said: al-Miqdad b. al-Aswad, Abu Dhar al-Ghiffari and Salman al-Farsi, may Allah’s mercy and blessings be upon them, then the people came to know after a while [the truth], these [three] are those around whom the banner revolved and they refused to give Bay`a [to Abu Bakr], until when they brought the commander of the faithful عليه السلام by coercion and he gave the pledge of allegiance, and that is His words the Elevated - “Muhammad is not but a messenger, messengers have come and gone before him, if he dies or is killed, will you turn back on your heels, and whoever turns back on his heels then he will not harm Allah a thing and Allah will recompense those who are grateful” (3:144).
      The narration indicates that the uniqueness of the three was that they did not give the Bay`a to the usurper because of knowing the true status of Ali, it was only when Ali was forced to give the Bay`a, and he did [for the Masliha which Allah willed], that the three also agreed to do it. The meaning of 'then the people came to know after a while ...' is that some people recognized their fault, and acknowledged that the commander of the faithful was the most rightful person to assume leadership. That all the others apart from the three were paralyzed by fear is shown in the narration below:
      أبي جعفر عليه السلام قال: جاء المهاجرون والأنصار وغيرهم بعد ذلك إلى علي عليه السلام فقالوا له: أنت والله أمير المؤمنين وأنت والله أحق الناس وأولاهم بالنبي عليه السلام هلم يدك نبايعك فوالله لنموتن قدامك! فقال علي عليه السلام: ان كنتم صادقين فاغدوا غدا علي محلقين فحلق علي عليه السلام وحلق سلمان وحلق مقداد وحلق أبو ذر ولم يحلق غيرهم؛ ثم انصرفوا فجاؤوا مرة أخرى بعد ذلك، فقالوا له أنت والله أمير المؤمنين وأنت أحق الناس وأولاهم بالنبي عليه السلام عليه السلام هلم يدك نبايعك فحلفوا فقال: إن كنتم صادقين فاغدوا علي محلقين فما حلق إلا هؤلاء الثلاثة قلت: فما كان فيهم عمار؟ فقال: لا؛ قلت: فعمار من أهل الردة؟ فقال: إنّ عمارا قد قاتل مع علي عليه السلام بعد ذلك
      (ii) [al-Kashshi] Abi Ja`far عليه السلام said: the Muhajirun and Ansar and others came after that [the coup at Saqifa] to Ali عليه السلام and said to him: you are by Allah the commander of the faithful, and you are by Allah the most rightful person and closest to the prophet, put forth your hand so that we can pledge allegiance to you, for by Allah we are going to die in front of you [in your defense], Ali said: if you are truthful then come to me tomorrow having shaved your head [which would visually identify the ‘rebels’ to the authorities], so Ali shaved, so did Salman, Miqdad and Abu Dhar, and no one else did, then they came a second time after the first and said: you are by Allah the most rightful person and closest to the prophet, put forth your hand so that we can pledge allegiance to you, and they swore an oath, he said: come to me tomorrow having shaved your head if you are truthful, so no one shaved except three. I said: Ammar was not among them? He said: No, I said: Ammar is from the people of Ridda? He said: Ammar fought together with Ali after that.
      This reaffirms that the uniqueness of the three is related to them not giving in and remaining with Ali to the end as far as his right is concerned. Note also how Ammar is not included among the Ahl al-Ridda, even in a historical sense, because of his later support for Ali. In fact, one of the reasons behind Ali accepting to give Bay`a after his show of dissent was so that the masses do not renounce the faith totally. Recall that the Islamic polity was still unstable and there were a lot of Arab tribes whose allegiance had been personally to the prophet and not the Diin per se, the Jahiliyya was not far from their psyche.
      أبي جعفر عليه السلام قال: إن الناس لما صنعوا ما صنعوا إذ بايعوا أبا بكر لم يمنع أمير المؤمنين عليه السلام من أن يدعو إلى نفسه إلا نظرا للناس و تخوفا عليهم أن يرتدوا عن الاسلام فيعبدوا الاوثان ولا يشهدوا أن لا إله إلا الله وأن محمدا رسول الله صلى الله عليه وآله وكان الاحب إليه أن يقرهم على ما صنعوا من أن يرتدوا عن جميع الاسلام وإنما هلك الذين ركبوا ما ركبوا فأما من لم يصنع ذلك ودخل فيما دخل فيه الناس على غير علم ولا عداوة لامير المؤمنين عليه السلام فإن ذلك لا يكفره ولا يخرجه من الاسلام ولذلك كتم علي عليه السلام أمره وبايع مكرها حيث لم يجد أعوانا
      (iii) [al-Kafi] Abu Ja'farعليه السلام  said: When the people did what they did - when they gave allegiance to Abu Bakr, nothing prevented the commander of the faithful عليه السلام from calling to himself (i.e. gather support to rival them publicly) except his fear for the people - that they would apostate from Islam, and begin worshiping the idols anew, and reject witnessing that there is no God but Allah, and that Muhammad is his messenger; and it was more beloved to him to acquiesce to what they had done rather than them apostatizing from the whole of Islam. Verily, those who clambered upon this (opposing Ali for rulership) have been destroyed. As for the one who did not contribute anything to that (opposing Ali for rulership) and entered into what the people entered into without knowledge (about his status) nor enmity towards him then this act of his does not make him a disbeliever, and it does not remove him from Islam, and this is why Ali kept quiet about his matter (status), and gave allegiance while displeased, when he could not find any supporters.
      The narration makes it clear that had the Imam fought for his leadership i.e. a civil war it would cause irreparable damage, this is because of the tenuous position that Islam had, even the outward Islam (the Islam of the Shahadatyn) would have been wiped out. There were a lot of external and internal enemies waiting for this infighting to make sure that the whole foundation of Islam crumbles.  
      Conclusion
      The Umma became, for the most part, misguided after their prophet. This is something that had also happened to the communities of past prophets. But this misguidance should not be understood to have taken all of them out of Islam as a whole, rather, by ignoring a central commandment of the prophet they have done a great sin which struck a blow to the pristine Islam.
      Furthermore, the protagonists differ relative to their role in the fiasco. Some were quite unaware of the whole thing and lacked full knowledge of the Haqq of Ali and his Ma`rifa, this could be because they were blind to the order of the prophet (total ignorance); had some doubts; did not have the ability to influence the outcome because of some constraints [swept away by the wave of events]; or because they showed cowardice and faltered in coming to Ali’s aid. Others later acknowledged their mistake and made up for it in the following years. All these in their different categories can be said to be the majority. Their fate in the next world of “realities” is left to Allah
      On the other hand, there were those who administered the whole thing. They had full knowledge of what the prophet had ordered them and what the divine commandment required them to do. They also knew the position of Ali. Despite this, they fought against this explicitly. These are those who should be treated as apparent Muslims in the daily life in this world [according to most scholars]. This is, after all, how Ali himself treated them, praying in their mosques, visiting them in sickness, helping them out when they faced challenges, eating with them etc. part of which is Taqiyya and safeguarding the greater principles of Islam, but they are undoubtedly people of the fire in the next world.
      Note that this interpretation is dependent on the position of differentiating between the Dharuriyat of the Diin and that of the Madhhab and considering the Shahdatayn alone to be enough in making someone a Muslim [unless taken out for some other reason]. Whilst this is a popular position among scholars today, it has had its detractors among the scholars of the past, one of them being someone like Shaykh Yusuf al-Bahrani, who considered the rejectors of the Wilaya as Kafirs with the fullest implication this has [even in this world].  
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