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  • 7/25/2012

The Narrative Awakening

Imam Khomeini in Uprising


In conditions mentioned above, the Iranian clergy who, after the events of the Constitution Movement, were constantly plagued with assaults by governments of the time and British elements, on the one hand, and by animosities of hired intellectuals, on the other, took actions to preserve Islam and themselves. On invitation from the ulama of Qom, Grand Ayatollah Hajj Shaikh Abdolkarim Ha'eri migrated from Arak to Qom and, a short time later, Imam Khomeini who, by the grace of his extraordinary talent had completed the preliminary studies at various levels in the Arak and Khomein theological assemblies, migrated to Qom and became active in strengthening the newly-founded Theological Assembly of Qom.

Soon he came to be regarded as an outstanding scholar of mysticism, jurisprudence and philosophy. As pointed out earlier, at such times, the preservation of the clergy and religious authority was an imperative necessity to challenge and curb the anti-clergy policies and objectives of Reza Khan and his son.

Therefore, His Holiness Imam Khomeini, in spite of differences of his views with those of Ayatollahs Ha'eri and Boroojerdi with regard to the mode of opposition and approach by clergy and religious authorities to the new conditions and the role of the clergy in connection therewith, consistently remained a staunch defender of the power of the religious authority during the active incumbency of both religious authorities mentioned above and was at their service. Imam Khomeini was very much interested in following up the social and political issues.

After securing his monarchical rule, Reza Khan, in early years of his reign devised and began to carry out an ambitious program for eradication of the effects of Islamic culture in the Iranian society. In addition to imposing censorship on the clergy, by issuing official circulars, he instructed all lamentations and mourning for the martyred Imams to be stopped. Religious sermons were also banned. The teaching of religion and Qur'an in schools and performing daily prayers were banned. He began preliminary talks on unveiling of Iranian Muslim women. Before Reza Khan had revealed his aims and objectives to the public, the dedicated clergy were the first stratum of the society who, with awareness of the behind-the-scene policies and plans of Reza Khan, rose to show their protest. In 1306/1927, the dedicated clergy of Esfahan, led by Ayatollah Hajj Aqa Noorollah Esfahani, staged a protest migration to Qom and took refuge there. This move was seconded by the ulama of other cities. The 105-day migration of the clergy to Qom (21 Shahrivar to 4th Dey 1306 AHS) and their search for sanctuary there resulted in a feigned retreat by Reza Khan, and Mokhberolsaltaneh, the then Prime Minister, was committed to accept and carry out the terms proposed by the refugee-ulama. In Dey 1306/December 1927, with the martyrdom of the leader of the uprising by the agents of Reza Khan, the asylum ended.

The above-mentioned adventure presented an opportunity for a young, talented and challenging student-clergy, named Ruhollah Khomeini, to become better acquainted with the issues and the modes of challenge and the mechanism of the clergy’s fighting against Reza Khan. In Nowrooz 1306 AHS/March 1927, a face-to-face encounter between Reza Khan and Ayatollah Bafqi in Qom led to the siege of this city by military forces and the beating by Reza Khan of this great challenging Ayatollah and his exile to Rey city. This event and similar happenings as well as the parliament proceedings of those days, especially the challenges of the famous clergy and parliament Deputy, Ayatollah Sayyid Hassan Modarres,14 left their indelible impression on the sensitive and inflamed soul of the Imam.


"The Narrative of Awakening" (Hadith-e Bidari) book by Hamid Ansari

Other Links:

Islamic Solidarity: Islamic defense strategy

Islamic Solidarity: Infra-National Vision toward the Muslims

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