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Shia Followers are Supporters of Islamic Leadership (Vilaya)

imam sadiq (a.s)

Another thing Imam Sadiq (A.S) expects from Shia Muslims is recognition or understanding of their Imams. It is after this recognition by mind and heart that they might show absolute obedience to the Islamic leadership or jurisprudence. Such obedience enables them realize their own sorrows, joys, pleasures and hardships of life closely linked with the sorrows, joys and pleasures of the Infallible Imams. The affection toward the Infallible Imams and their household must be deeply rooted in their heart and they must measure correctness of their deeds and creeds, and reactions by the degree of affection they show toward Islamic leadership.

In this connection Imam Sadiq (A.S) says: “May God bless our Shia followers who have been created out of the excess of our incarnate spirit, and who have been intermixed with our leadership. They become sorrowful with our sorrows and become happy with our happiness.

It is the old story however, that many pretend to be the supporters of Islamic leadership, while the number of true supporters and followers of Islamic leadership is low.

Imam Sadiq (A.S) has made a distinction between the true and false followers and supporters of Islamic leadership where he says: “Shias fall into three categories: One group makes use of our name for their own benefits and promotion; another group earns a living and accumulates wealth by misusing our names; and the third group is from and with us who become calm with our security and become upset when we are in danger. They never reveal secret things when they must not, are not found when they are absent, are not paid a glimpse of attention when they are present (meaning, they are not after name or fame). But they are the beacon of guidance for the people.     

In addition to repeated recommendations on obedience to and supporting the Islamic leadership, Imam Sadiq (A.S) trained such students. His student Abdullah bin Ya’foor was a perfect example of a Shia follower and supporter of Islamic leadership. Despite very high social and scientific rank, he was an absolute obedient of his Imam.

He was once sitting at the classroom of Imam Sadiq (A.S) and enjoying his lessons. He made a remark in that session that was interesting to Imam Sadiq (A.S). His words came from the bottom of his heart and it was a sign of his deeply rooted faith. His story can be a valuable lesson for all followers and supporters of the Islamic leadership. Abdullah said: “I swear by God, if you cut a pomegranate by two halves and say one is “halaal”‌ (religiously permissible) and another is “haraam”‌ (religiously forbidden) I will surely attest that the one you say halaal, is halaal and the other that you say haraam, is haraam without any objection.”‌ The Imam replied: “God bless you. God Bless you.”‌

Yes, the true Shia submits to the order of his Imam unquestionably. A true Shia will never turn his back to the Infallible Imams.

Elsewhere, Imam Sadiq (A.S) says: “He who claims to be our follower and supporter but seeks guidance from those other than the Infallible Imams is a liar.”‌ This is because salvation is achievable through following and supporting the Infallible Imams.

Imam Sadiq (A.S) has also said that: “I swear by God, we are a blessing God has bestowed on his creatures on the earth. He who seeks salvation will meet salvation through Infallible Imams. A true Shia is the one who follows the guidelines and recommendations of his Imam.”‌

This is why Imam Sadiq (A.S) says: “He who claims to be our Shia but acts against us, is not a true Shia. A true Shia follows and supports us in word and action, he who behaves like us and acts in accordance with our advice.”‌

Translated by: Sadroddin Musawi

Other links:

Imam Sadiq from Imam Khomeini’s point of veiw

Some Wise Sayings of Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (A.S) on knowledge

The History of Imam sadiq’s Martyrdom

Imam Sadiq (A.S) and his Social Behaviour

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