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In the Name of God بسم الله

Are these really Imam Ali's words?

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  • Advanced Member
maybe it should be looked at in context after the battle with Aisha which she initiated and in which many muslims died. but i dont imagine Ali(as) would ever talk out of anger and if he was adressing her he should not have spoken in such general terms. the fact that a woman gets half a mans share does in no way reflect on her intelligence..i dont see how this connection was made. but think about it a man gets twice a womans share of inheritance because he must go on to marry a woman to which he will have to give a dower, therefore the inheritence becomes equal because it is given back to a woman. it has nothing to do with intelligence. as for the menses thing, again that does in no way make females deficient in faith, this is completely contrast to the quraan and the sayings of the russool (pbuh) where a woman is praised for her role of bearing children and now is called deficient in faith because her biological processes work in such a way so that she can be able to concieve children. i dont care for the word deficiencey it makes it seem like its a choice and if it were such a deficiency than Allah (SWT) would make it and obligation on women to make up for the prayers missed, but he doesnt (only in Ramadan of course). truth is that during this period in the month women are limited as to what they can do, we arent to make contact with anything holy (the quraan, prayer mat, mosque etc) the first convert to islam was a woman, Khadijah (ra), whom the Prophet (pbuh) loved and honoured dearly- would she be called deficient in faith??-- :no: ---the first martyr in islam was a woman-- would she be deficient in faith?? :no: , there were women who fought alongside the Prophet (pbuh) in battle, the daughter of the Prophet (pbuh) was a woman about whom her blessed father (pbuh) would proclaim "Fatima is part of my flesh, whoever causes her to be upset, upsets me" . if anything science has proven that a women are often more intelligent than men and yes it is true as stated in islam that men and women have different ways of thinking, but this is not necessarily a shortfall in eithers characters or abilities. Hazrat Zainab (as) prooved a very powerful figure during and after the battle of Karbala. she delivered sermons after the tradgedy in which she fuelled grief over the great atrocities comitted and had a role in undermining the cursed Ummayad dynasty. it seems he was directing it at Aisha though its not clear i mean, the evil plots and the idea of blindly following woman, im sure a following a great woman like Hazrat Fatima (as) would not have led to the same disasters. Ali (as) considering who his wife was would not have meant this of all women again i just wish it was not in such general terms.

(salam)

Yeah I always hear the ''he was referring to Aishah'' thing, but if he was referring to Aishah, I still don't understand why he refers to the whole female race collectively.....and yet he couldn't have ofcourse been talking about all females because people like Sayeda Fatima (as), Lady Maryam (as) and so on stand out......often there are exceptions to the statements made by Imams and their statements are generic statements....however, that it seems as though the exceptions in this case apply only to people like Sayeda Fatima (as)/Lady Maryam (as) etc.

hmm..makes alot of sense..

Maybe we just shouldnt really compare men and women coz they are essentially diferent..Look at the matter of witnesses for instance. Why is it that 2 women are required in the place of one man? we are told its because women are naturally more forgetful so one would remind the other on what happened. Could this sort of measure be applied in the case of faith deficiency? :unsure:

Do you mean applying forgetfulness to faith deficiency or applying some other random measure? :unsure:

Many people say that when Imam Ali(as) gave this sermon, he was actually referring to Ayesha and women of her like. My question is that if this is true then why did he not use the term..."some women are like this"? Why did he generalize his statement by saying that "women (not just some women) are like scorpions...are deficient in faith, deficient in intelligence"...etc.

There must be some reason why he included ALL women in this, rather than including only some. There can be no fault in these words of wisdom. Infact, he is like a mouth-piece of Allah almighty. Therefore, including ALL women in this statement must have a very sound and amazing logic that we ordinary humans are unable to understand.

However, as devoted shia muslims, it is our duty to wholeheartedly accept and believe that whatever Imam Ali(as) has said about women, is 100% correct, beyond any doubt and is exactly what Allah himself thinks about women. Perhaps this is a test for a women in its own right. A pious shia woman would accept Imam Ali(as)'s comments wholeheartedly and acknowledge that she may be deficient in faith or intelligence etc. Wheras the less pious women would make a fuss out of it, consider this a sexist sermon (naoudobillah) [someone here actually said that] and bring up all anti-male, feminist points against Imam Ali(as) words of wisdom.

As I said earlier:

he couldn't have ofcourse been talking about all females because people like Sayeda Fatima (as), Lady Maryam (as) and so on stand out......often there are exceptions to the statements made by Imams and their statements are generic statements....however, it seems as though the exceptions in this case refer only to people like Sayeda Fatima (as)/Lady Maryam (as) etc.

Anyway, I do see the point you're trying to make and undoubtedly, there is a wealth of wisdom behind everything Imam Ali (as) says and does. I just wish I could understand that wisdom :(

wasalaam

Edited by ~RuQaYaH~
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  • Veteran Member
Many people say that when Imam Ali(as) gave this sermon, he was actually referring to Ayesha and women of her like. My question is that if this is true then why did he not use the term..."some women are like this"? Why did he generalize his statement by saying that "women (not just some women) are like scorpions...are deficient in faith, deficient in intelligence"...etc.

Yes, some people make the feeble argument that his supposed statements were addressed only to Ayesha but its not hard to see that these are universal statements. The great Iranian philosopher Dr. Abdul Kareem Soroush had a number of lengthy discussions on the subject of women in Nahj al-Balagha where he examines every possible interpretation of these remarks. He correctly points out that these are universal to all women because its not just Ayesha who inherits half of a man, abstains from fasting during her period, etc., its all women. As brilliant a scholar as Dr. Souroush is, even he cannot come up with a satisfactory explanation for some these passages. In the end, he offers a rather disappointing conclusion that our ulema need to pay more attention to these hadiths so they can one day be resolved!

There must be some reason why he included ALL women in this, rather than including only some. There can be no fault in these words of wisdom. Infact, he is like a mouth-piece of Allah almighty. Therefore, including ALL women in this statement must have a very sound and amazing logic that we ordinary humans are unable to understand.

However, as devoted shia muslims, it is our duty to wholeheartedly accept and believe that whatever Imam Ali(as) has said about women, is 100% correct, beyond any doubt and is exactly what Allah himself thinks about women. Perhaps this is a test for a women in its own right. A pious shia woman would accept Imam Ali(as)'s comments wholeheartedly and acknowledge that she may be deficient in faith or intelligence etc. Wheras the less pious women would make a fuss out of it, consider this a sexist sermon (naoudobillah) [someone here actually said that] and bring up all anti-male, feminist points against Imam Ali(as) words of wisdom.

No offense brother but what you are telling us to do is shut off our minds and blindly believe what's written in some book regardless of whether it makes logical sense or not. In case you've forgotten, we are not Christians we are Muslims. The Holy Qur'an and Ahlul Bayt all urge us to exercise reason before accepting anything.

I'm not a chick, but I'm sure a lot of sisters on this board would take offense to you judging someone's piety by whether they agree with a particular hadith. Did it ever occur to you that such hadith may not even be authentic? In fact, when I wrote to Ayatullah Saanei's office about sermon 79 they replied that such hadith are not acceptable:

In The Name of Allah (SWT)

Thanks for your e-mail. Regarding your question:

Such sermons are not reliable, even if they may have complete document and reference.

Best regards,

Office of the Grand Ayatollah al-Uzma Saanei

Name ---------

Family

Email -----------

Age 26

Country United States

_Smsask

Question In the Nahjul Balagha, there is a sermon attributed to Imam Ali (as) that says amongst other things that women are deficient in faith, intelligence, and shares. I believe this is sermon 79 or 80 in Nahjul Balagha you can read it here: http://www.al-islam.org/nahjul/79.htm. Do you consider this to be an authentic hadith? Are the narrators of this hadith considered authentic? And if this is true, then what does it say about the status of women in Islam?

w

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  • Advanced Member
Do you mean applying forgetfulness to faith deficiency or applying some other random measure?

not really..meant maybe the emotional capacity etc might be synonymous with faith? eg since awoman is very emotional she experiences different feelings at different times. So maybe when she is in a low emotional state (and this would happen more often in a lady than in a man due to several hormonal influences) then her faith might also be affected?

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  • 1 year later...
  • Advanced Member

what kind of crazy person says women were made for men. no offense but that kind of thinking has no place in islam!!! i cant believe it is a sister sayng that// i feel a little sick :angry: if anything Men were made for women. and by the way.. Men are not the best leaders and administrators.. for every evil woman leader there are 10 evil male leaders

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  • Advanced Member

also i would like to add that a girls period does not affect her faith. i live in a western country and have been all around the middle east. trust me when i say when it comes to people who are deficient in faith males take the gold.so many of them chose to be such hopeless slaves to their desires it isnt funny.

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  • Veteran Member
Do not seek the advice of women, their verdicts are often immature and incorrect and their determinations are not firm.

I believe in that valuable warning by our Maula (as). However, it does not mean that you treat women with any disrespect or neglect, or that you extrapolate further using conjecture and reach wrong conclusions by virtue of such sayings. You must understand the nature of all things accurately and without conjecture.

They are more like decoration to humanity

This line, although I believe it is not correctly translated, is only speaking of people in general. It doesn't surprise me at all that most men do not understand women and are mistaken. And the above sentence, even if incorrect, sounds accurate and befitting for, say, rich Saudi men. I hope you understand my point of view.

It could also mean that women are the most beautiful in humanity.

However, I believe that the core message in the correct saying as I've read is authentic. But not to the extent you seem to have perceived in your original post. Nevertheless, I believe women are to be protected vigilantly from all forms of harm and cared about very politely and treated with respect and with the most appropriate manners.

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It is an empirical fact that women generally are not good in abstract thinking, and analysis. Men are better at that than women. Is this a bad thing for women? not at all. What women are good at is thinking concretely. They love the fine details of life. This is just evident when you study Masculinity and femininity. Men arent so good in observing the details on things. While men like to generalize women like to particularize. maybe thats why i am generalizing? lol

Furthermore, The reason why The Quran and Imam Ali (a.s) sees men as the protector of women...and the reason why the shariah seems a bit more stricter on women than men in the general is precisely because Islam realizes the power of women. Women have such great power over men, that in order to balance things out shariah has to give some rights to men.

so who is really looking at women as inferior? thats the question.

salaam

MK

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Aww, I thik it's kind of sweet. Imam Ali (if he said this) is sayin womenare to be protecte, sheltered, n loved! N let's face it gals- is there anything more vicious than an angry woman??? No. It's less scary to fight an army of men than one enraged woman. N let's face i we are kinda scheming and under-handed when pissed off. N as for us being thr for deocartion- cmon gals- ARE WE OR AR WE NOT THE "FAIRER SEX???" GOD MADE US BEAUTIFUL! ;)

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  • Advanced Member

Guys chill it comes down to emotions and women are driven by them more than men.

When Imam Khomeini was returning to Iran and the American Journalist asked him what he felt he simply replied 'hitchi', meaning nothing. THAT is the level headed attitude needed to lead a peoples. After decades away from his home, after his son mustafa was killed in the name of the Islamic Revolution, After the deaths and torture of his loyal pious students, after the shah cutting out with his tail between his legs, and in spite of all the emotions of a leader returning to his nation to lead it through a crisis, he didn't cry or exaggerate or anything else, he simply said 'nothing'.

Many men would have shown at least a little emotion but would have kept at least a little bit more calm than the average lady. Maybe they would have displayed joy and said 'i am happy to return' or 'i'm proud to be back' etc.

Now imagine what a woman would have said. Imagine our own mothers who we love and respect in this same scenario as the Imam. We all know they would have been in tears of Joy that their oppressor was gone and they were going home. That doth not a leader make.

It is not demeaning to them, but men are more level headed.

I know someone said there are more evil male leaders than women, but to prove that women generally cant lead as well as men, especially when they lead other women, watch any episode of the Apprentice. At the beginning of the Series, the teams are usually split between the men and the women and eventually the teams must be mixed up with some of the guys and some of the girls changing sides, because so many women go out early. Very rarely is it due to a lack of ability, in fact women have got to the final three many times and have even won it before. It is almost always due to vanity, pride, jealousy, backbiting and the other faults that can be found when women are put together and a woman is put in charge, raising her above the others and creating animosity. The women tend to implode while the male competitive spirit manifests itself into sacrificing their own personal pride to beat the other, "the enemy". This is magnified when the enemy is female. From time to time, Alpha males will compete and cause internal friction but even then one will back down for the other to lead, for the sake of the team.

In fact men need leaders and even look up to another man with strong leadership qualities. They just don't respect female leaders the same way. Women simply don't respect their own sex leading them and take it as a slight on their own abilities and would much rather follow a male leader.

Edited by Hassan kachal
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  • Veteran Member

They say that a husband and wife are a unit of the society. Or like the two pairs of wheels for the vehicle of a family.

Now logically, the power of having the final say in all things had to be given to only one of them. Either the husband or the wife. There can not be two equal authorities in a system or there will be plenty of chaos. A vehicle has only one drivers seat for a purpose. If there had been the provision of two drivers seats with two brakes, two accelerator peddles and two sterring wheels, each and every such vehicle would crash and end up in a disaster.

At the same time, I do not think that the mentioned saying prohibits following the advice of women in trivial matters of negligible consequence or matters that they understand best such as, say, the needs of children, the color of the new paint job for your home, their choice of crockery, etc. While if a woman speaks on a matter that they simply have no experience about (e.g., driving skill) I'll nod but thats that. I'll also never take her advice on matters of great consequence, like, where to hide my credit card, for example.

Edited by Abu Dujana
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Now logically, the power of having the final say in all things had to be given to only one of them. Either the husband or the wife. There can not be two equal authorities in a system or there will be plenty of chaos. A vehicle has only one drivers seat for a purpose. If there had been the provision of two drivers seats with two brakes, two accelerator peddles and two sterring wheels, each and every such vehicle would crash and end up in a disaster.

I couldnt agree with you more. There has to be a chain of command.

Ironically, none of us would actually be discussing this sermon say maybe as recently as 20-30 years ago. But times have changed and such issues have become pertinent to debate.

How reliable is Nahjul-Balagah? We do know that there are sermons that were not recorded properly, and some not even in their entirety. It is quite possible that Imam Ali would have expanded on this meaning in a latter sermon but it wasn't recorded.

If you havent understood how to verify a secondary source to the Quran, then you havent understood the Quran.

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  • Advanced Member

Women are driven by their emotions (generally speaking). When I look at my mother it's vivid that she acts on her emotions many times more than my father does.

But it doesn't mean that woman are inferior.

Saying that women are inferior to men is like saying that screwdrivers are inferior to wrenches (you see how stupid it sounds).

We have to admit that men and women are two different kind of human beings with different qualities.

So if a man can't be a good emotional support for his children (or whomever) woman can't be a good rational support for her children (or whomever).

AND it is NOT deficiency, You are deficient when you act in a way you are not made for.

That's why it is haram to for people to act like or similarize their opposite sex.

So play your naturall role and step toward perfection.

"Inna akramakom ind allahe atghakom"

Edited by Divine Love
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Guest fatima2003
. I'll also never take her advice on matters of great consequence, like, where to hide my credit card, for example.

please please please tell me where you hide your credit card......... :angel:

:lol:

well we are the ones who have the miracle of life grow inside us and we can do sooo mcuh a man cannot do..... our differences are beautiful and they compliment one another....... I am thrilled I am a muslim women who has the right to be a wife and a mother and be all the things Allah swt created me to be..... Let them work and support us and protect us.......in return we do for them......what could possibly be worng with that?

and no women I am not ignorant... im quite intelligent...... thats why i feel the way i do....

Edited by fatima2003
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  • 12 years later...

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