مطلب مرتبط

سخنرانی در جمع هیات دولت و نمایندگان مجلس (حب نفس- دلگرم نمودن مردم)
شناسه مطلب صحیفه
نمایش نسخه چاپی

Speech

Jamaran, Tehran
The birth anniversary of the Noble Messenger) s (and Imam Ja`far as-Sadiq) `a (
The divine purpose of appointing messengers) `a (: the nurturing of human beings; the great danger of self-love; the criteria of human judgment; hope and encouragement for the nation
The ministerial cabinet and the members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly) the Majlis (
جلد ۱۴ صحیفه امام خمینی (ره)، از صفحه ۶ تا صفحه ۱۸
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
The Prophet of Islam( s ), the noblest of beings and the most perfect human being
Today is a very great day because it was on this day that the leader of the great Islamic ummah and the great leader of the Ja`fari school illuminated the world with their auspicious light. We probably have no or very few days as auspicious as this one. I felicitate all the Islamic nations and the Muslim countries and the honorable members of the Majlis and the ministerial cabinet as well as the other brothers who are present here and pray to the Almighty Allah for your health, success, and victory.
The universe was never before and will never after be graced with a blessing such as the sacred being of the Noble Messenger( s )of Islam. This auspicious being is the noblest of God's creations, the most perfect human being ever, and is the greatest guide of mankind. And the ones who elucidated upon the Islamic laws and the message of the Noble Prophet( s )were none but his Purified Progeny( `a ), and particularly, Imam Ja`far ibn Muhammad as-Sadiq( `a ).
The nurturing of human beings- the divine purpose of appointing messengers( `a )
The efforts of the prophets of God( `a )and the purpose behind their appointment throughout the ages has been the nurturing of the human being. The being which is the most elite of all creation and with the proper nurturing of whom, the universe gets nurtured and with the corruption of whom the universe gets corrupted. The efforts of all the divine messengers( `a )from the first one to the last one have been to invite and lead this being

to the Straight Path- and not mere verbal guidance and sermonizing but rather as serving as exemplars and by setting examples through their own deeds, acts, and words- in order to reach this being to the perfection that he is worthy of. Alas! Their vision did not materialize as per their intentions and even in times to come the dream that they had for humanity will not come true. This has been because they face a being which is known by none except Allah and by those who have received their knowledge from the Almighty Allah, man is an intricate being who does not even know himself. And in all likelihood, the Prophetic saying," The one who has known himself has known his Lord," «1» hints at this very reality. A knowledge of the self in man and an awareness of the attributes and the instincts that are innately present in him are either impossible or are nearly impossible to reach, except by the Infallible Ones who have been purified completely by Allah. Since man is full of self-love and wants everything exclusively for himself, he is left without the awareness of many realities because of this intense self-love; or in other words, he cannot truly know himself under the influence of this self-love.
Self-love: the biggest danger
There are three basic ways to view the world. The first one is to view creation or part of the creation through self-love and the other is to view the world and everything through bias while the third view is free from, both, self-love as well as bias. The first two views are held by those who are not free people. The biggest problem of humanity and all of us is this problem that we all have and has been created by us. The ones who look at other people and at things through either self-love or through bias and enmity can never be free people and are always caught up in their own opinions. The one who views things, or people, or communities through self-love is not free and can never possess clarity of judgment. Man believes that whatever he says is through freedom and non-prejudice; but even if someone claims this, do not believe him. This man cannot be freed from selfish desires and self-love which is the root of all problems. There are many people who claim to have freed themselves from such problems but in reality there are very few such people. It could be possible that many people may not even themselves be aware that they are slaves to their own carnal selves and not to God; they believe themselves to be free and purified, which is again due to the presence of self-love in man. This self-love veils all man's shortcomings in his own eyes. He is blind to his shortcomings because of this self-love and at times
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( 1 )Ghurar al-Hikam, hadith 4637, p. 232; `Awali al-La'ali, vol. 4, hadith 149, p. 102.

also believes his shortcomings to be virtues. And unless and until man does not free himself from this trap and the enslavement of his carnal self through strife and by following the teachings of the prophets( `a ), he will never succeed in purifying himself nor will his judgments and views be correct or based on reality. He may occasionally manage to succeed in doing so, but not always. Bring to mind a certain situation in which someone commits a certain act, in a certain place, and at a certain time. If two people were to view this single situation, one an enemy and the other a friend, the one who is an enemy considers the act as repulsive while the other who is a friend commends it. It is the same act performed by the same person, at the same time, and in the same place, and in the same situation- everything is identical- but because of the predicament of the viewer, and because of his lack of freedom and owing to his entrapment in the prison of self-love, he approves of the action if he is on good terms with the person and views this act as bad if he is not on good terms with him. Man is himself unaware of this phenomenon. Yes, there are some people who are honest in expressing their rejection or approval. There are such ones too, but there are many others who, because of their enslavement to the carnal self and because of this internal affliction and because of the devil that is active within them, cannot judge freely and cannot perceive the truth of the matter and express things truthfully. They either do not perceive the truth of the matter or they simply refuse to admit it even if they know it to be the truth because of this enslavement to the self and because of the hold that the devil and their own evil instincts have over them. The same holds true in the contrary situation. The commendations or rejections that we as ordinary people hold or express are through this same love of the self and love for near ones- which is itself also because of self-love- and because if someone is" my" son or" my" brother or follows the same school of thought as" me", they are all part of" me". All these things, in the ordinary man, find their root in the" I-ness" of man and if one praises someone else, it is because that person is in some way connected with him.
If someone wishes to do a self-examination, he should isolate himself and should sit on his own and bring to mind two people: one who is his friend, his relative, or someone close to him and another who is his opponent or enemy. He should sit and interpret an act committed commonly by someone who is a friend and someone who is an opponent and he should observe how, when he attributes this same act to a friend, he starts praising it or at least tries to cover up its flaws with all kinds of tricks but if that same act were to be committed by an enemy, he would exaggerate and make much

ado. If one really wishes to know where he stands, he should take into consideration these factors. He should try to appreciate a good act even if it has stemmed through an opponent and should commend him for his skills. If an ugly act has been committed by his own group, he should disapprove of it and should consider it as objectionable. I am not talking about exposing people's secrets, but he should at least admit this to himself. Certainly, it is against the principles of Islam to expose other people's secrets. Back-biting and slander are aberrations that afflict man but the worst of them all is being entrapped by one's own self. It is possibly because of this that if man sees an exceptional act committed by someone else he tries to undermine it and tries his best to denigrate the creditable act. But if a creditable act is committed by a friend or someone close to him, he tries to magnify it out of proportion. All these are due to the" I-ness" and are not related to anything beyond one's own self; the entire world revolves around" me"!
Attachment to the world: The root-cause of man's destruction
This material world or the world of nature is one of God's creations and is one among the many manifestations of God. Attachment to this world of nature or attachment to the world results in man's destruction. There could be a person who is more attached to his prayer beads than someone else is to an entire kingdom. This first one is more attached to this world than the second one. Prophet Sulayman ibn Dawoud[ Solomon( `a ) ]was a king- a king who governed over one and all. However, his kingship did not have the power to enslave the heart of the king- the Prophet Sulayman ibn Dawoud( `a )- to itself. Similarly, even though the Noble Prophet( s )was the chief of a nation as well as its ruler, his supremacy did not succeed in alluring him into its entrapments. He was by no means under the sway of his position and instead had it completely under his own control. If man succeeds in gaining control over himself as well as life, he is no longer world-oriented even if he owns the entire world; just like Prophet Sulayman( `a )and the others like him. And if this self-control has not been developed and if man is in a state of heedlessness like most of us, he is a captive of the world, the hollow and worthless world. Whether it is the material world or the hereafter or God or life, whatever we focus upon becomes our" world". When we are attached to anything we become its captive. When we are attached to the material world, and are under its sway and dominance- whether it is attachment to posts or attachment to positions- all these are the" world" for us and we are its captives. The more the attachment to power the more we are entrapped; and even though we are in its captivity we are completely oblivious to that fact. If

man succeeds in freeing oneself from the dominance of the carnal self( nafs ), according to the teachings of the Prophets of God( `a ), and if he succeeds in liberating himself from the clutches of his worst enemy( i. e. the dominance of his carnal self )and in freeing himself from its captivity then such a man reaches a state in which he has power over everything and nothing has any hold over him; and even all that which he has under his power is worthless in his eyes. It does not mean anything to him. In the same breath that he wishes the best for his friends, he wishes the same for his enemies. The prophets( `a )were like this. The prophets( `a )burned with sympathy at the state of the unbelievers[ kuffar ]and at the plight of the hypocrites[ munafiqoun ]. All the efforts of the prophets( `a )were in order to liberate the unbelievers and the hypocrites and the pervert people who were trapped in the captivity of their own" self" and the love of the world which is the fountainhead of all evils. And what a trying mission this was! And of course they did not gain a complete success in their missions. And that is never going to be possible. This man will never reach the worthy status of becoming" human"( Adam ). There was a famous( Persian )proverb that said:" How simple it is to collect knowledge and how difficult it is to become" human"!" To this our Shaykh «1»( may Allah have mercy on him )added:" How difficult it is to gain knowledge and how impossible it is to reach the worthy status of becoming" human"!
The criteria for right judgment in man
If man wishes to pass a judgment on a certain matter, or if he wishes to verify facts within himself, he should first evaluate himself. It is easy for him to sit in judgment over the faults of others or to criticize the merits of other people or to even eulogize the shortcomings of some others. And all this as a bystander. He criticizes those who are fighting at the warfronts. He finds faults with those who are working in government offices and yet does not take it upon himself to make any contribution. He just stands aside and engages in criticism and fault-finding. How common and simple this is! However, if one sat by himself and evaluated his own self and examined his own thoughts and intentions over an issue, like the victory and gains of Islam over its enemies, what would he discover? Would such a victory gladden his heart? Would the joy that he expressed stem from the depths of his heart or would he be offended at the victory of Islam, simply because it was gained at the hands of someone else!? Most people would rather forego the victory of
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( 1 )It refers to Haj Shaykh `Abd al-Karim Ha`iri Yazdi, the founder of the Qum Theological School.

Islam than seeing their rival succeed! If a person were to inwardly regret that the victory was not gained at his own hands and if he found that it makes a difference at whose hands this victory was gained, could such a person be considered a well-wisher of Islam?! Is the interest of Islam on his mind?! The one who is a true well-wisher of Islam would welcome any victory for Islam, even if it were to take place at the hands of an unbeliever[ kafir ]. Of course, he would not approve of the unbeliever per se but he would certainly appreciate his action and he would appreciate him, simply because his victory has resulted in the victory of Islam. Furthermore, one should also examine his own reactions over a blow dealt either by him or someone close to him to the cause of Islam? Does it evoke any response or does it not? One should check if he turns a blind eye toward the truth and sacrifices the truth for his self-interest when he picks up the pen to write about a matter or when he decides to publicly discuss something that happens in the outside world, or in whatever else he does. He should check if this self-love and subsequently the love for his own interests or the love for his close ones have blinded him to such an extent that he cannot speak out the truth and sacrifices the truth for his own interests or not. If he finds that such is the case, then he should know that his pen and his tongue are at the service and in control of the Satan while if he finds that he can appreciate a noble act, no matter who it stems from, and if he can praise it because it is a good act and if he can focus on the action instead of its doer then he is fit to pass a fair judgment. Then he can pass a judgment about our Islamic Consultative Assembly[ Majlis ]because if his focus is on the Majlis itself and not on its individual members and if he can focus upon the process that is taking place within the Majlis, then he is fit enough to pass a fair judgment since he is not attached to individuals. But if individual members are involved and if that makes one change his judgment- most often heedlessly- about the rightness or the wrongness of a certain issue, contrary to a judgment that was passed before taking individuals into consideration that would show that a personal judgment based on friendship or otherwise has influenced the person. It is quite possible that the person himself believes that he has judged the situation well whereas the truth is that he has not gained a correct picture of the situation. Since his judgment is tainted either by his affinity or his dislike for an individual, his perception of the situation is flawed. We should first examine our own selves and should only then proceed to pass judgment on whether an act is right or wrong. When there is animosity among two groups, they normally focus upon the weaknesses in the actions of the rival group and remain silent over their merits. And even this silence is maintained only

by the best of them, since the other sick and pervert people would go to the extents of even portraying its merits as flaws. They would even go to the extent of striving to prove its positive aspects as negative. However, if one can pass an unbiased judgment then he is a free man and the highest form of freedom is freedom from the self and freedom from bias and prejudice. Our biggest problem is this very self-love, and the love for position and the love for fame.( The common attitude is )" I desire this act to occur at my own hands so that I get the applause from everyone"! Such a person dislikes any praiseworthy act to take place at the hands of others because he desires that it should only take place through him so that people stand up and applaud him. Moreover, even if a wrong act had to be committed by him, he would still expect to be applauded for it. This is because such a person is blind since" the love for anything makes a person blind and deaf". «1» He turns so deaf and blind that he cannot see any good and can only find faults. And at times, he is blinded to all faults and is focused only on praise. Moreover, if he is a mischief-maker, he goes to the extent of projecting the good as bad and the bad as good. If someone is in his good books, no matter how defective his deeds are, he projects them as good. All this is against the essence of being human and is against the Straight Path, to guide to which, the Noble Prophet of Islam( s )as well as all the other prophets( `a )were sent to mankind. If people succeed in freeing themselves from the clutches of these whims and fancies of the carnal self and if they succeed in defeating it, they have emerged victorious. If they fail to do so, then no advice, no counseling, no books, and no reasoning will have any effect upon them. Philosophical reasoning, too, has no effect on people who are biased. Someone who considers the Noble Prophet( s )as an enemy is bound to find faults with even his most reasonable principles no matter what reasoning is put before him. There is a Prophetic tradition[ hadith ]which more or less mentions that occasionally the denizens of hell experience a cooling and enquire about its cause. They are told that it is because the Prophet of Islam( s )is passing by. However, on hearing this, they say:" Close the doors( of hell ). We prefer this torment over him."
The role of power and determination in training the carnal self
The nature of the carnal self is such that if man is deeply attached to this world or to his wife, children, wealth, honor, and position and other similar things, one of the biggest and the most deadly dangers he faces is that during
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( 1 )`Awali al-La'ali, vol. 1, hadith 149, p. 290; Musnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal, vol. 5, p. 194.

the time of his death, when he discovers that God Almighty is taking him away from all his beloved possessions, he turns into His enemy. I once heard that a very respectable and pious scholar of Qazvin, may Allah have mercy upon him, said:" We once went to visit someone who was on his deathbed. This man was saying: `The injustice that I have been meted out by God( We seek refuge in Allah! )has never been experienced by anyone else. How much effort I put into the upbringing of my children! And now He wants to take me away from them! '" This is the danger! What brings disaster upon man is that his love of the self, his love for position, and his love for other things bring him to such a state that even if the Messenger of God( s )were to take him away from those things, he would turn into his enemy. And even when he hears that it is God Who wishes to strip him off these attachments, he would turn into His enemy. Unless we do not mend our own ways we will never be able to do anything for our country. I am not suggesting that one should be completely freed up from all desires. This is not going to be possible for you and me; it is only possible for those who have been protected by God. But we do possess the power to have a hold over our tongues. We cannot claim that we have no control over our tongues. We do have the power to control our pens. None of us can claim that we have no control over what we write. We do have the power to control our tongues, our expressions, our pens, and our actions. And it is because of this free will and choice that we shall be held accountable and no matter how much one loved or hated someone, his pen should remain under his control. He should at least have the power to refrain from finding faults and weaknesses in everything and putting his pen to their service.
Duty of the officials: offering hope and optimism to the nation
Today we stand in the need for offering hope and optimism to this nation. We owe everything we have gained to it. Whatever we have achieved today is thanks to these great masses. We should not forget that so many people have lost their lives right from 15 th Khordad «1» to this war. So many
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( 1 )On June 3, 1963, Imam Khomeini delivered a historic speech in Qum, repeating former denunciations of the Shah's regime and warning the Shah not to behave in such a way that the people would rejoice when he should ultimately be forced to leave the country. Two days later, he was arrested at his residence and taken to confinement in Tehran. His arrest prompted a major uprising in many Iranian cities, which resulted in the deaths of not less than 15, 000 people in the span of a few days when the Shah's troops opened fire on unarmed demonstrators. The date on which this uprising began was 5 th June or 15 th Khordad according to the solar calendar used in Iran and became known as the uprising or movement of 15 th Khordad.

people have turned handicap and so many have lost their homes only to secure the independence of this country; to gain freedom for this country and to ensure that we are liberated from our earlier miseries and so that we can have an Islamic country. A country which follows God and His Commandments! We should not debilitate our people because we are still facing many problems and have not really gained complete victory. We should not create problems in the Majlis. Let us not forget that we have never had such a good Majlis and such sincere members of parliament. I am not claiming that there is absolutely no corrupt member in the parliament. There may be some but the number of sincere members is certainly more. We must protect this Majlis and we must not make our people lose faith in it. We should refrain from writing against it day in and day out and from defaming it by fault-finding. The need of the hour is not to disappoint our people to the extent of making them hopeless, whether they are traders, workers, or whatever because all of them are respectable. We should not dishearten our farmer to the extent that he gives up his enthusiasm to work. We should not dispirit our representatives to the extent that they quiver in their speech. We should not disempower the soldiers who are guarding our borders such that their hands get cold on duty. We should all strive to breathe optimism into this nation. It is with hope that we can gain victory. It is with hope that a farmer is empowered to work harder. It is with hope that the army and the revolutionary guard corps are able to withstand the onslaught of the enemy at the borders. As per our own claims, we are not the enemies of Islam. And, of course, we are not the enemies of our country. We do not oppose the interests of our own country. We wish that, God-willing, this country and Islam gain victory. This is the common aspiration held by all of us. Well, if this is what we all wish for, why should we weaken our Islamic government? Why should we weaken our Majlis? Why should we weaken our army? Why should we weaken our revolutionary guards? Aren't they all engaged in serving this nation? Surely they are all at the service of this nation, right from the president of the country to this simple cleric( referring to himself )as well as the other government bodies that are serving the nation. Let us stay away from pessimism. Personal bias and prejudice should not make you pass wrong judgments in your speech and in your writings. Stick to reality!
The path of the prophets( `a )for social reformation
Of course, I am not asking you to give your consent to moral corruption. This is against the laws of Islam and is among the major sins. But if you wish

to urge someone to the truth and to make him aware, point out calmly toward the weaknesses. Do not use your pen to provoke them to get worse. And if you address an issue with bias and insult someone in the bargain, that person, too, may not be so polite as to ignore the matter. He will also retaliate with some prejudice. In fact an opponent may even go a step further. If we really want our country to remain independent and if we do not want it to fall into foreign hands, all our various groups will have to join hands in cooperation. We should give up our personal bias and prejudice which stems from the same self-love. We should gain some control over this self-love even if we cannot eliminate it completely- and even if it is for a short while- until we gain this victory. Harness your pens for a short while, and if you wish to advise someone, do so gently because he may take your kindly advice but if all of you are harsh he will not be able to tolerate it. We should take our lessons from the great ones. You have all heard the story of Malik al-Ashtar «1» and of how someone abused him in his presence, oblivious of the fact that it was Malik himself that he was speaking to. On learning that it was Malik, the man started following him( fearing the consequences that lay in wait for his rude behavior ). He found Malik busy praying in the mosque and went over to apologize to him. Malik calmly disclosed to the man- this is what we are told- that he had come to the mosque only to pray for his forgiveness! «2» Just notice their method of training people. See how such people trained others. According to another story, someone had once written a letter regarding a certain problem to Khwajah Nasiruddin, «3» may Allah be pleased with him. He had insulted him in that letter and had called him a" dog"[ kalb ]. In his reply, according to what we have heard, Khwajah responded to all the problems
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( 1 )Malik al-Ashtar: more fully, Malik ibn Harith from Nakha'a and famous as al-Ashtar, was among the prominent commanders of Imam `Ali's army and the governor appointed to Egypt by Imam `Ali. He accompanied the Imam in the Battles of Jamal and Siffin. On his way to Egypt, he was killed through the conspiracy of Mu`awiyah. For the text of the Imam's famous instructions to him before setting forth to Egypt, see Nahj al-Balaghah, Letter 53, pp. 426- 445. A complete translation is contained in William C. Chittick, A Shi`ite Anthology( Albany, N. Y., 1980 ), pp. 68- 82.
( 2 )Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 42, p. 157.
( 3 )Nasiruddin Abou Ja`far Muhammad at-Tousi( 595- 673 AH )famous as Khwajah Nasiruddin was a famous scholar of the seventh century AH and was a minister in the court of Hulakou Khan, the Mongolian ruler of Iran. He was a great scholar of his times in astrology, geometry, astronomy, logic, and philosophy and had written 130 books and treatises on different subjects. Some of his outstanding contributions include an observatory in Maraghah and a large library of 400 thousand books. His most important books and treatises include Tahrir Usoul Hindisi Uqlidus, Risalah `Aroud, Sharh-e? Isharat-e Ibn Sina, Tahrir-e Majsati-ye Tajrid al-`Aqa'id, Awsaf al-Ashraf, Akhlaq-e Nasiri, etc.

raised by the man, one by one, in a very wise manner until he reached the point in which he had called him a" dog". Here he said:" No, there is a difference between my characteristics and qualities and those of a dog." He added that a dog has such and such a characteristic which I do not possess while I have such and such a quality that a dog does not possess. «1» What a wise manner to handle such an issue so well! If Khwajah, too, had instead replied back saying that you are a dog and your father, too, is a dog, tomorrow he would have received another letter with even more abuses. When it is possible for us to reform people with a soft tongue, with advice, and with a few gentle and unbiased words that do not sting and if in this way we can add to our friends for the cause of Allah, then where is the need for us to use our pens indiscriminately!? Many people think that by talking against a particular person, they can bring him down. Least do they realize that before anyone else, they are bringing themselves down. And people, too, will see through this and will start hating them for their biased writings.
We can invite people to the right path with gentle words, a soft pen, with advice and with friendship, just like the prophets( `a )did. The prophets( `a )refrained from using the sword except against those who refused to mend their ways and who spread corruption in society. The one who corrupts society, refusing to change his ways, should be segregated from society. He is like a malignant tumor that corrupts society.
The prophets( `a )were like physicians who strived to reform the society. If a surgeon were to pick up his scalpel and slit the stomach of an ailing person in order to remove a malignancy, would you raise a hue and cry and call him a murderer? No, in fact he would be respected and even paid for his action. You may even kiss his hand in gratitude and relief for removing a malignancy that could have proved to be fatal. Such were the prophets( `a )!
The Prophet( s )was so compassionate and eager to guide people to the right path that even when God, the Almighty, said to him:" It may be that thou tormentest thyself( O Muhammad )because they believe not," «2» he continued to invite people to goodness but when he would find that a particular group of people was corrupting the society he would resort to the sword which in this case was just like a surgeon's knife. As the healer of all mankind he is bound to reform the society and especially because of his all-encompassing compassion it becomes inevitable. The Prophet( s )had said
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( 1 )Muhaddith Qummi, Al-Kuni wa'l-Alqab, vol. 3, p. 252; Safdi, Al-Wafi bi'l-Wafiyyat, vol. 1, p. 180.
( 2 )Sourah ash-Shu`ara' 26: 3.

that the worth of a single strike of the sword of `Ali ibn Abi Talib «1»( `a )was greater than that of the worship of all man and jinn «2» together because his strike was for the sake of reform and not for the spread of corruption.
If we truly want this society to progress and this country to get reformed our pens and our tongues should first take the lead. But we are all caught up in our own stuff and need to do something to at least free people from the problems that we create with our writing. This is after all a big and major problem.
Social reform depends upon judicious words and actions
If we wish to bring about social reform, we should realize that it is time we harnessed our pens and advised people. If we choose to write, let it be for the sake of reform. Let us refrain from hunting for faults and writing about them. If you find faults with others and write about them, your rival will also do the same with you. And this will turn into a vicious circle. If someone stands round the corner and starts abusing a person, and if that person just
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( 1 )Imam `Ali( `a ), the leader of the Muslim world was born in 600 CE to his mother by the name of Fatimah and a father by the name of Abou Talib( Prophet's uncle ), and from the age of 6 he grew up in the Prophet's house. He was the first man to accept Islam and promised to aid the Prophet( s ). In the early days of his mission when, at God's command, the Prophet was inviting his kith and kin to Islam, at a gathering, he announced to them:" He among you, who accepts my Faith will succeed me." He repeated this declaration three times and each time, only `Ali( `a )declared his faithfulness. On the eve of the hijrah or migration, notwithstanding the plot of the Quraysh against the Prophet's life, `Ali( `a )slept in the Prophet's bed and thus proved his fidelity to him. The Prophet selected him as his brother and when returning from the last hajj pilgrimage, at a place called Ghadir, introduced `Ali( `a )as the master and guardian[ wali ]of the Muslims, after himself. `Ali was the companion of the Prophet during his loneliness and his aid in his struggles and in time of dangers. After the Prophet's spiritual ascension, for about 25 years, `Ali( `a )kept aloof from government administration and leadership. During this period he was the observer and overseer who prevented deviations and defections. After the murder of the 3 rd Caliph, `Ali's disciples and a group of people swore allegiance to `Ali( `a )and elected him as the caliph. The Imam's period of administration lasted for 4 years and 9 months. `Ali obliterated the changes that had been made after the Prophet( s )and restored things to their earlier conditions. Opposition elements, whose personal interests were threatened, rose pretending to take revenge for the 3 rd Caliph's death. Bloody civil wars followed that lasted throughout the reign of `Ali( `a ). Finally the unique man of history was martyred in the altar at Koufah, Iraq.
For further information on the Imamate of `Ali ibn Abi Talib, see Yousuf N. Lalljee, `Ali the Magnificent( Qum: Ansariyan Publications, 1987 ); Muhammad Jawad Chirri, The Brother of the Prophet Mohammad( Imam `Ali ),( Qum: Ansariyan Publications ); George Jordaq, The Voice of Human Justice, trans. M. Fazal Haq( Qum: Ansariyan Publications, 1990 ), and visit: http:// www. al-islam. org/ faq.
( 2 )Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 39, pp. 1- 2, hadith 1; Hakim Neyshabouri, Al-Mustadrak, vol. 3, p. 32.

passes by without paying undue attention or maybe clarifies his position pointing out to the misunderstanding, the matter will come to an end. But if he starts abusing back in retaliation this reaction will only intensify the issue. We should all do something about this. Our writers, our thinkers, and the well-wishers of society should all sit together and work toward creating optimism among our people. Our people are in need of hope. There are people who are creating despondency among them and there are also those who claim that everything here is in shambles and that there is no hope for this country. It is upon all of us to strive and prove that contrary to what they claim, the system of our country is better than any other. Where else can a system be found in which even an ordinary grocer can stand up and criticize the President or the Prime Minister or the Speaker of the Parliament? Do go and take a look at the leaders of the other countries. Check out their dealings and how they treat their people and compare them with what we have. In spite of knowing this, why should we create rifts among our officials with our pens? Why should we blow matters out of proportion? Even if there were some rancor among certain people, we should strive toward resolving matters with our pens and our words. We are all brothers and should stand together in unity. All of us want to reform this country. We should be cautious not to harm our country and the Islamic Republic through our pens, actions, or words in a way that we end up proving the others right in claiming that we are unable to govern own country and its affairs. Why should we do that? Simply because of certain personal bias why should we speak in a way that will create a negative impression for the Islamic Republic in the world? The world is anyway spreading negative propaganda about the Islamic Republic. Let us at least try to abstain from doing things that propagate a negative image for the Islamic Republic that you have all opted for. Do not give others the grounds to take undue advantage of our words. We must pay attention to this matter. Mankind is full of problems. May Allah rescue us from these problems and may He salvage us from the evil of our own selves!
May God's peace, mercy and blessings be upon you.



امام خمینی (ره)؛ 04 بهمن 1359
 

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