In the name of Allah

The All-Compassionate, the All-Merciful

20th Shabaan 1445 (1st March  2024)

Islamic Universal Association

20 Penzance Place, Holland Park

London, W11 4 PG



Imam Ali (a.s.)’s advice in the Nahjal-Balagha – Part 16

Further to last week’s discussion on the first part of Imam Ali (a.s.)’s Sermon 64, I quote below the latter part of the said sermon and its analysis:


“So acquire such provisions from the world with which you can protect yourselves tomorrow. A servant should fear his Lord, steer himself (against evil), send his repentance ahead and overcome his lustful desires, for his death is veiled from him. His hopes are deceiving him, and Satan has been appointed to adorn his acts of disobedience so that he may commit sins without compunction and he is also manipulated to delay repentance until his desires make him more complacent and heedless. Pity for the negligent person whose life would be a proof against him and his days (passed in sin) would lead him to punishment.We ask Allah, the Glorious, to make us like one whose bounties do not mislead nor cause them to be deficient from obeying Him and who neither regret nor despair after death.”


Valuable points

  • Imam Ali (a.s.) has consistently advised us to take advantage of the opportunities that life offers and to acquire the acceptable provisions, such as righteous deeds, to be shielded from the fire of hell.
  • No one knows exactly when he will die or in what land he will die. Moreover, there are no specific signs by which a person will know that the end of his life is approaching. That is why preparing for death is central to the life of a Muslim, which would entail performing as many good deeds as possible and avoiding vain desires. He should remember Allah (s.w.t.) at all times, repent and seek His forgiveness when he errs and especially before his death. Forgiveness is earned through repentance, and repentance begins with regret of the act and commitment not to return to it. According to Ayah 8 of Surah At-Tahrim: O you who believer! Turn to God in sincere repentance, so that your Lord will wipe out your sins from you and admit you into Gardens beneath which rivers flow…..”
  • Satan is an enemy of man. His goal is to make man sin through whimsical desires and evil suggestions and yet failto repent for his actions. According to Ayahs 6 and 8 of Surah Fatir respectively: “Verily Satan is your enemy, so you take him as an enemy. He only invites his party to follow the path of the flaming fire.” “Is he then whose evil deeds is made so alluring to him that he sees it as good, like one who are rightly guided? ….” Gratitude is an essential aspect of the Islamic faith. It is a characteristic of a true believer and a way to show appreciation for Allah (s.w.t.)’s blessings. It is indeed an act of worship that brings him close to Allah (s.w.t.). The Holy Quran in Ayah 7 of Surah Ibrahim emphasises the importance of gratitude: And your Lord proclaimed: If you are grateful, I will surely grant you more; but if you are ungrateful, My chastisement is truly severe’.”


Second Sermon

Virtues of the holy month of Ramadan

With the forthcoming holy month of Ramadan, the month of forgiveness, blessings and clemency, I take this opportunity to congratulate you and also to beseech Allah (s.w.t.) to grace us with the benefits and blessings of this month.

It is highly important to appreciate the significance and blessings of Ramadan so that we are motivated to furnish our utmost effort and time to worship Allah (s.w.t) and to abstain from temptations and wrongdoings. In many ways, this month serves as an enhancement of the soul.


  • Ramadan is indeed a month of guidance and purification. According to Ayah 183 of Surah Al-Baqarah,“O who believe! Fasting has been ordained to you as it was ordained to those before you, so that you may guide yourselves (against evil).” Fasting has been prescribed, during this month, so as to bring the soul into harmony with Islamic belief and virtue and to get closer to Allah (s.w.t.).
  • Allah (s.w.t) has sent down the Holy Quran during this month to bring man out of darkness and oppression into light and guidance. Ayah 185 of Surah Al-Baqarah provides: “The month of Ramadan is the month in which the Holy Quran was revealed as guidance for mankind; a clear evidence of guidance and the criterion of right and wrong…” It has been reported in Amali Sadooq on page 62 that when Haifs ibne Qaiyth asked Imam Sadeq (a.s.) how was it possible for the Holy Quran to be revealed in Ramadan as it was revealed to the Holy Prophet (s.a.) in 23 years, the Imam explained: “The entire Quran was revealed during the month of Ramadan to the sky in Baitul Mamoor and thereafter from Baitul Mamoor it was revealed to the Holy Prophet over a period of 23 years.”
  • Another special characteristic of this month is that the night of Qadr falls during the month of Ramadan. It is the night of power or the night of destiny. Surah Al-Qadr reads: “Verily we have revealed the Quran in the Night of Qadr (Power). And what will make you know what the Night of Qadr is? The Night of Qadr is better than a thousand months. Therein descends the angels and the spirit by the permission of their Lord with decrees of all affairs. Peace is the entire night until dawn-break.” The Holy Quran was therefore revealed in the Night of Power during the blessed month of Ramadan as a guide to man. The value and excellence of this night is better than a thousand months (83 years and 4 months). Furthermore, Ayahs 2 and 3 of Surah Ad-Dhukhan provides: “By the manifesting Book. Verily We have revealed it on a blessed night indeed, for We intend to warn the people.” The blessed night is the Night of Glory referred to in Surah Al-Qadr quoted above, and according to Surah Al-Baqarah it was revealed during the month of Ramadan. The revelation thus began during that night in Ramadan, and the entire Quran was revealed to the Holy Prophet (s.a.) during a period of 23 years, to warn the heedless as the occasion demanded.

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