In the name of Allah

The All-Compassionate, the All-Merciful

8 Dhil-Qadah 1445 (17 May2024)

Islamic Universal Association

20 Penzance Place, Holland Park

London, W11 4 PG


Imam Ali (a.s)s advice in the Nahjal-Balagha – Part 28


Islam is a religion that bestows us with guidance to uphold our wellbeing and progression at all times. Hence a guide is an essential prerequisite in Islam for us to follow the path and achieve the goal as provided in the Holy Quran. Islam is not inherited; it must be taught continuously and that is why we need guides and reminders to help us stay on the straight path; the path that leads to true success in this life and the life in the hereafter.


We should bear in mind that divine guidance comes only from Allah (s.w.t), following the message of His Messenger, and without it we cannot apply the true im­port of Quranic revelations. That is why we need something more than revelations, which are: 1.Instructions and live demonstrations (divine guidance) to implement our obligations properly. 2. Be aware of our destination. 3. Have enough provisions to embark on the journey to our final destination. Hence to lead man to the right path, guides should be well equipped with divine knowledge and infallibility in religion, which are exclusive to the Holy Prophet and his Ahlul Bait (our Imams). Moreover those who follow Satan or his vain desires cannot guide people to the right path because he who strays from the path of Allah (s.w.t) can only lead his followers to hell. Relevant Ayahs are:


Ayah 35 of Surah Younus: “Say:Of our associates, is there any who can guide to the truth?” Say: “It is God alone Who guides to the truth. Is then He Who guides to the truth more worthy to be followed or one who does not go aright unless he himself is guided? Then, what is the matter with you? How (ill) do you judge?

Ayah 21 of Surah An-Nur: “O you who believe! Do not follow into Satan’s footsteps for whoever follows the footsteps of Satan will follow what is shameful and wrong. Had it not been for God’s grace and mercy upon you, none of you would have been purified, but God purifies whomsoever He wills and God is all-Hearing, all-Knowing.”

Ayah 50 of Surah Al-Qasas: “If they do not answer you, know that they only follow their own caprice. Who is more straying than he who follows his own caprice without any (divine) guidance? Verily God does not guide unjust people.”   To be continued


Second Sermon


Birth anniversary of Imam Ali ibne Al-Musa


11th of Dhil Qadah marks the birth anniversary of our eighth Imam, Ali ibne Musa  Al-Reza , and I congratulate Hazrat Mahdi (a.j.f) and the lovers of the Ahlul Bait on this auspicious occasion.


According to a tradition Imam Reza (a.s) was born on the 11th of Dhil Qadah, 148 Hijri in the city of Medina and he martyred in Tus (Mashad), Iran, on the 28th of Safar, 203 Hijri. The period of his Imamate lasted for 20 years. He was brought up and instructed by his father for 31 years, until his father was taken to Baghdad to suffer the hardship of imprisonment for 4 years until his death. He was 35 years old then and the responsibilities of the Imamate devolved on him. At that time Harun Al-Rashid was the absolute ruler of Baghdad and the descendants of Imam Ali were going through trials and tribulations because of the tyranny of the Abbasid ruler.


When Mamun came into power he invited the Imam to Marv, where his seat of caliphate was located, to show his support and friendship to him with the evil intention of keeping a close eye on him. To accomplish his goals, he sent some of his special agents to the Imam in Medina to force him to set on a journey to Khorasan through a route that had the least number of Shiites. His agents also watched him continuously and reported all his activities to Mamun. He arrived in Marv on the 10th of Shawwal, 201 Hijri, via Basra, Khoramshahr, Ahwaz, Rey, Neyshabur, Sanabad and Sarakhs. Throughout his long journey, he was cordially received by the people living in those cities and villages. It has been reported that the Imam stayed in Qom for a few months where he established commemorative Majalis on the atrocities of Karbala. These Majalis were also re-established in Tus, where he lived as heir-apparent.


Mamun’s policies were contrary to the principles of Islam and the teachings of the Holy Prophet (s.a). However, on the Imam’s arrival at Marv, he welcomed the Imam with great pomp and ceremony and treated him with great honour and offered him the caliphate in the presence of all key personalities of his government in order to gain control of the Shiites and to make the Imam settle near him to control him and suppress his followers. The Imam refused and said:

“I am the servant of Allah and by my supplications and in obedience to Him I hope to attain the divine status. O Mamun, if Allah has appointed you as Caliph, then you cannot present it to anyone and if caliphate is not yours in the first place, then you are not authorised to offer it to anyone either.”

The Imam was finally compelled by Mamun to be his successor. According to Yakubi, on the 27th of Ramadan, 201 Hijri, the Imam was officially designated as Mamun’s heir-apparent and his name was engraved on gold and silver coins.  (R: the Book of Manaqib V: 4 P: 367)


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