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post #61 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-22-2008, 03:37 PM
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No Islamic clerics, eh?

Google

And nothing "special" about the 12 Imams, eh? No real "leadership" in Islam? Hmmm...

Role of 12 Imams (AS) in Islamic Society reconstruction : JAFARIYANEWS, September 13
Role of 12 Imams (AS) in Islamic Society reconstruction

Courtesy: Samir Haideri

[Author Late Ayatullah Baqir al-Sadr, Translated by M.A.Ansari]

Allah, who brought prophet hood to an end with Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.), decreed that he should be followed by his vicegerents who would carry out the task of leadership and succession after the termination of Prophethood. These are the twelve Imams, whose number was textually fixed by the Messenger of Allah (S.A.W.) in a number of authentic traditions* which are unanimously accepted by the Muslims. Their names are in the following order:

Imam Ali bin Abi Talib - al-Murtaza (AS)
Imam Hassan bin Ali - al-Mujtaba (AS)
Imam Hussain bin Ali - al-Shaheed (AS)
Imam Ali bin Hussain - al-Sajjad (AS)
Imam Muhammad bin Ali - al-Baqir (AS)
Imam Jaffer bin Muhammad (AS) - al-Sadiq (AS)
Imam Musa bin Jaffer - al-Kazim (AS)
Imam Ali bin Musa - al-Riza (AS)
Imam Muhammad bin Ali - al-Taqi (AS)
Imam Ali bin Muhammad- al-Naqi (AS)
Imam Hassan bin Ali- al-Askari (AS)
Imam Muhammad bin Hassan- al-Mahdi (AS)
(May peace be upon Muhammad (S.A.W.) and His Vicegerents (A.S.)

* Sahih Bukhari pg 173 Egypt - Sahih Muslim vol 2, pg 191 Egypt - Sahih Abi Dawud vol 2 pg 207 Egypt - Sahih Trimizi vol 2 pg 45 Dehli - Masnad Ahmad bin Hanbal vol 2 pg 106 Egypt.

It appears to be quite natural that we should, with earnest spirit and clear thinking, try to deepen our spiritual relation with the leaders of the mission of Islam and make studies in order to discover more and more about these illustrious leaders of history. With a view to illuminate our way to development we must acquire light from the brilliant history of this great House.

It is for the above reason that we take this opportunity to give some brief account of the life of the imams of the Shiah (May peace be upon them!).

As within the limited space available to us it is not possible to give an account of the life, the movement and the program of each imam separately. We propose to draw the attention of our readers only to the salient features common to the life of all the Imams.

This discussion has been so arranged that the life of the imams may be observed and studied as a composite and coherent phenomenon. We are going to discuss the characteristics of this phenomenon in order to find out its common aims and its true nature and to understand the circumstances in which it worked. Lastly, we will give a brief account of the main features of the movement of the Imams and the role they played in human society. Of course, this does not mean that we think it improper to study the life of each Imam separately. In fact the independent study of the distinguishing features of each Imam is as necessary as to acquire an overall knowledge of the life of each individual Imam and learn the distinctive features of his aims and activities so that this knowledge may become a prelude to the study at which we are aiming at present. We should make an independent study of the life of each Imam to prepare our way to an overall and proper study of the life of all the Imams as coherent and composite phenomena.

When we undertake the study of the Imams' life at these two levels, in the first instance we notice that apparently there is a wide difference in the ways how they conducted themselves in various situations. Imam Hassan (A.S) concluded a peace treaty with Mu'awiya. Whereas Imam Hussain (A.S) rose to fight a battle against Yazid and laid down his life. We find that Imam Sajjad (A.S.) passed his life inclusively in prayer and adoration, whereas Imam Baqir(A.S) devoted all his time to the dissemination of the knowledge of prophetic traditions and theology.

But if we look at the life of the Imams and its characteristics in a coordinated manner, we will find that their life consisted in one single movement, which pervaded their history and had no contradiction or inconsistency. A study such as we are going to undertake reveals one single truth, though its various aspects are capable of being described differently and hence may give divergent impressions.

The reason why apparently there exists so much difference in the actions of various Imams is attributable to the difference of time, the social conditions and the difficulties, which each Imam had to face. Each Imam during his time was continued with the problems and the difficulties entirely different from those with which other Imams were faced.

But if we take a general and total view of the life of our Imams, we may draw results far more outstanding than the effects which may be produced by the study of the individual life of each Imam, for in the course of this general study we will find a deep harmony between all the actions of the Imams. To elucidate this point we give an example:

We see that the `Commander of the Faithful', Imam Ali (A.S.) during his outward caliphate assemble the companions of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) and asked them to give evidence as to what they had heard the Prophet say on Imamate. A large number of them said:

"Yes, we heard the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) say expressly that you were the Imam".

Again we read in the life account of Imam Hussain (A.S) that once on the day of pilgrimage he gathered together the surviving sahabah (Companions) of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) along with a large number of the tabi'in (followers) and asked them to narrate what they had heard the Prophet (S.A.W.) say about Ali (A.S.) and the Holy Family.

Again we see that Imam Baqir (A.S) also repeated this action, and asked the tabi'in and tabi'in al-tabi'in (followers of the followers) to give evidence as to what the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) had said concerning the Imamate of Ali (A.S.) and his descendants.

When we study the life of the Imams and co-ordinate their actions, we observe this kind of activity throughout. These three actions taken consecutively by three generations represent a pre-calculated and coherent plan, and are complementary of each other. The idea of this consecutive actions was to admonish various generations and at the same time to preserve a tradition from oblivion and alteration.

To our belief the existence of a common policy pursued by our Imams is not a hypothetical question. Therefore it is not necessary to try to look for its reason or to discuss as to what historical events led the Imams to pursue such a common policy. Their common role is the natural consequence of the very belief in their Imamate, which is an assignment common to all of them.

Its responsibilities and conditions being the same, the natural consequences of this common assignment should be coherent movement, each part of which in the course of history should complement its other parts. It is only because of the difference of time that the actions taken by the various Imams appear to be different.
My only tools here are doubt and Google. I'm hoping you can understand that it's the strict adherence to the rules of your man-made religion, and not at all your faith, that I find curious.
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post #62 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-22-2008, 03:50 PM
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You mean poetry like Antara wa Abla?
I wouldn't call Arabs before Islam illiterate like most would refer to that era as the jahiliah. I am well aware of the Mu' allaquat and even the Mufadaliyat
I suspect that Islam and more specifically the Quran was written with some knowledge of what Christians and Jews believed. Don't tell me that Mohamed or his followers had no idea who these people were, because of all people the ones from Mecca were traders that traveled north and south depending on season and traded with Yemenis and Habashis in the south and the Romans, Jews, Persians in the north. By all means these people were not ignorant, oh no!
Mohamed himself was Aisha's general manager before he married her. He traded for her and was known for his honesty among others, hence they called him the Amin. So he knew about ahl al kitab Talhoube, we Americans are not as dumb as you're told in the streets of Dubai or Abu Dhabi, and 911 had made us even more aware of what we're dealing with here. For good or bad, your culture is under the microscope and don't be surprised we will be cranking out oulamah that can rival yours.

Last edited by DP; 03-22-2008 at 03:53 PM.
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post #63 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-22-2008, 06:00 PM
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QBNCGAR...............

Last edited by MBLR; 03-22-2008 at 06:03 PM.
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post #64 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-22-2008, 06:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Tahloube View Post
I read random excerps from both, I mean the old and new testament, posted on a Christian Arab discussion forum. I spent more than a year there only to be kicked out and my account blocked because the priests over there found my questions too annoying for them. I'd love to read the bible but there are too many versions and I don't know which is the right one to choose but there's only one Quraan which makes it easier for you to read my holy book than it's for me to read yours.

You're not kuffar. You're the people of the book because you had a holy book. Bad Muslims shouldn't make you shun Islam. A Mercedes smashed into a wall doesn't mean Mercedes is a bad car; it means its driver is.
Drewprof is, I believe he once said, a Unitarian. Most Christian sects believe that Unitiraians are either heretics or apostates or a form of atheist. They have no "Book" in the traditional sense of Islam, Christianity or Jewry.

The biggest problems we are facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the executive branch and not go through Congress at all and that’s what I intend to reverse.

~ Senator Barack H. Obama
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post #65 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-22-2008, 08:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Botnst View Post
Drewprof is, I believe he once said, a Unitarian. Most Christian sects believe that Unitiraians are either heretics or apostates or a form of atheist. They have no "Book" in the traditional sense of Islam, Christianity or Jewry.
Wow, you pay attention
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post #66 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-22-2008, 08:22 PM
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Religious tomes were great guides to direct your course in life when the only available footwear was a sandal.
A coupla' Heebs turn green on a piece of fatback and bing-bong-bananas........pork is evil. Get a grip.

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post #67 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-23-2008, 02:16 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by QBNCGAR View Post
When one allows *any* written text to be the sole, infallible rule book by which their lives are led, ultimately blood will be shed.
When we allowed our ego to convince us that we can produce some laws that are sacred than anybody else's, the results were World War I and II and the atomic bombs and the (so-called) war on terror and a very vague,elastic term like "American interests" ,etc. Had Hitler won WorldWar II we would've seen other terms like "Nazi Interests" in Texas for oil, for example. Man and power is a dangerous combination if there was no ethical red lines. Mine are from Islam.
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post #68 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-23-2008, 06:04 AM
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@ Tahloube

It's a shame you are unable to think for yourself,despite your ability to read and assimilate facts.Try reading some atheist philosophy,such as essays by Bertrand Russell which are in plain modern English,short and easy to comprehend.
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post #69 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-23-2008, 07:30 AM
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Talhoube, what's your opinion about Magdi Allam? What's the opinion of the people around you about him?
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post #70 of 92 (permalink) Old 03-23-2008, 07:31 AM Thread Starter
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drewprof,

America must be an amazing country. With a population of 300,000,000 and the vast area it covers, the ethnicities , etc it's only natural. I'm not superficial enough to say that Americans are dumb or anything. I know a few Americans and they vary greatly. One of them speaks Arabic in a Kuwaiti accent better than me (if I tried to imitate a Kuwaiti accent, that is). The rest only speak a bunch of words. Not only American expats here don't know Arabic but almost everybody. They don't need Arabic to make business or take a job or even order a take-away, so why bother?

Back to your points, Arabs in genral didn't read and write at the time of the Prophet Muahmmed. There were a few only in Qureish (the tribe that lived in Makka) and the Arabic letters were not developed as we now know them. It developed later as a result of civilisation. However, they were eloquent even in their daily conversation and poetry was at its peak. They had good memory, too. (I have a silly theory. Maybe people who don't read and write have stronger memory because their brains are used extensively to document data rather than relying on paper ). Quran was, in the first place, learnt by heart by muslims and, in the far second, written down by the few who could write. By the way, Muahmmed ordered his companions not to write down his sayings so that they won't get mixed up with Quran.

If you're aware of the term Quran "sanad" (which is something I only knew of a few years ago when I started learning Quran by heart. It means according to or learnt from), you'll know that memorising the Quran from the written text is not enough. You have to read the whole Quran correctly to someone who has a sanad (ie already read the whole Quran correctly to someone who also had a sanad) passed to him by someone with a sanad (ditto) in a chain that ends at the Prophet Muhammed. This is the main way (ie verbal recitation) Quran was preserved and passed by Muslims to muslims generation after the other. Of course, it's also written and copied and now electronically stored but Quran in essence is words and sounds more than letters and writing. I wanted to clarify that point.

Makkans were traders and they made 2 trade journeys a year. Muhammed also did. But how much contact and information were excahnged on these journeys you think? I see people in today's world who have lived here in the UAE for years and never heard of Islam. In today's world of internet and readily available printed matter, heard and spoken media. I personally have great interst in other faiths especially Christianity and Judaism, I even have Christian friends and neighbours, a church is a 100 metres away from my mother's but if it wasn't for the internet, I wouldn't have known a thing.

I have a relative who has been living in California for more than a decade now. She works as a supervisor in some muslim school. She told me that people's interest in knowing Islam had grown manyfold since 9/11. As a result of people approaching them for information on Islam, the number of new converts has also increased. Now they need to expand because they used to cater to mostly Americans of muslim background, now they need to also cater for new muslims.

Our culture being under close scrutiny is something we welcome. We love to see people learning about our religion in particular. What I personally hate is the mix between Isalm and Muslims. Muslims these days are like drunk drivers crashing their cars into walls. People see the crash and blame the car. That's not right. The driver's to blame. You can't blame the car unless it's proved that it's defective.

Dear World,
I've got a great car for you to inspect.


Quote:
.. don't be surprised we will be cranking out oulamah that can rival yours.
I'm looking forward to that happening soon.
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