When order prevails result is: …

 

By: Hussein Al-Rumaithi

The title of this article can be presented as a statement or a question and since the answer is unconditionally assented and acknowledged, it would be meaningless to discuss any possible ambiguity of such statement. Abiding by order, rules and guidelines is not only an essence of showing class, it is a path to success and being able to accomplish based on outlined and set goals and progress. The holy Quran grants great importance to order and discipline, where the 4th verse of chapter 61 presents the perfect metaphor for orderly conduct and order. “as though they are a single structure joined firmly”. The holy Prophet of Islam emphasizes on the notion of order in all affairs and actions, where it seems without order the emergence of effectual results are doubtful.

The primary foundation of Islam as a religion and a path of life is solely based on orderly fashion conduct of deeds, decisions and action that includes every aspect of a Muslim’s daily affairs, whether personal, religious or interactional. Among the most repetitive advices by elders and teachers to youth, is the importance of organization and allocating time and efforts accordingly to have successful results. We all remember the famous quote, which has probably been said by majority of teachers around the world (Don’t leave your studying and projects till the last moment). The core of this statement is linked to organization and having order as a way of life, which will reflect on personality, characteristics and someone’s view before the public as well.

Imam Ali (P.B.U.H) has placed order and its importance in second place after being pious, which in addition shows that among the primary signs of being a pious person, being organized and adherent to order is given. Therefore, majority of Islamic scholars have determined that Islamic jurisprudence prohibits breaking the laws and orders of a society, such as speed limits and traffic rules. Failure to adhere with these rules, would destabilize the order and safety of a society and those two aspects are the primary essences of an innovating and smart society.

The notion of order in supplication is also among the important in Islam, where moderation and wise time allocation for supplication and prayer is necessary. Imam Al-Sadiq states in a narration that over-doing supplication would lead to reluctance from prayer and supplication, which means this spiritual and religious aspect of a Muslim’s life must abide by rules and orders of life. The five prayers/day are the obligatory prayers and anything else such as random supplications can be done during other daily tasks, as only repeating certain phrases and words are sufficient to be considered as supplication. In addition, unlike other religions granting total time and self to religion and its institutions has been disavowed by Islam, and the importance of forming family and working to provide for this family is considered among the best deeds and supplications to Allah.

Fortunately, Islam has presented the perfect means of organizing and adhering to orders and feasible rules in society, whereas as mentioned earlier the entire length of an individual can be covered by Islamic order and organization codes. Islam presents advice and solutions in maintaining order for:

  • Social interactional order
  • Personal life affairs, such as personal hygiene
  • Time management
  • Fulfilling covenants and contracts
  • Management of supplication and prayer order
  • Expenditure order and management
  • Military order and organization

There are numerous other aspect, where the lives of Prophet Mohammad and his holy household would present hundreds of examples and models for ordinary humans, where order becomes the essence of any action and decision in their lives.

SINCERITY OF INTENTIONS

By: Zeinab Alsheraa
During ethical dilemmas the issue of whether something is morally principled can be determined by the ends justifying the means or the idea that “it is the thought that counts.” In all cases, the purpose and intentions are always taken to consideration. Then comes the issue of whether the intention is justifiable or sincere. Without a sincere intention, all actions then become invalid, especially towards God, since it is the pillar of worship and the prerequisite of an action to be accepted.
Types of Intentions
There are three types of intentions that engulf the basic motives of people. They are the underlying reasoning behind any action—for nothing is done simply just because.
1- For Self
This is the merchant of intentions, when actions are calculated specifically to see what outcome would provide the most benefits to oneselves. This is the idea that ‘if I help this person today, then tomorrow they may help me when I am in need.’ People will perform a task if they are bargained a benefit from it. This may be a direct benefit, such as a favor owed, or indirect such as self image. Someone may act in accordance to what will give off a desired appearance towards oneself. For example, a person may help in a nursery to give off an image that they are gentle and loving. Their overall purpose is their self image and pride, despite their actions.
2- For Others
These intentions are to please others. This is where people crave the approval and attention from others, desiring likes on their Facebook posts. This builds upon the idea of seeking validation from others and attempting to please society by “fitting into” its social constructs.
3- For God
This contains the truest form of sincerity. The intention for God can be broken down into a summary by Imam Ali, “a group of people worship God out of desire for reward; this is the worship of traders. Another group worships God out of fear; this is the worship of slaves. Yet another group worships God out of gratitude; this is the worship of free men.”
How to be Sincere
Doing good actions
The more right one does, the closer they will be to God. When one is closer to God then they will be more sincere and will be led to a more sincere path, for a line in the Quran reads “As for those who strive in Us, We shall surely guide them in Our ways” (29:69).
Attaining knowledge
One must first be educated and informed about their actions. They must need to know what their actions will result of so one can be guided by the true faith. Knowing right and wrong and the outcomes of certain decisions, one would be compelled to have a more integral action.
Having honesty
This is where one must admit if an action they have performed is not as it appears to be. If one assumes that another has done a righteous action when they really have not, they must answer truthfully, to leave room for sincerity with their honesty.
Being aware
The clearest way to have sincerity is to be aware of what can affect your sincerity. Three things have the most prominent way of affecting one’s intention:
1- When you known when others are watching
Knowing that someone else is observing you can turn your purpose towards pleasing/impressing that person instead of God. The best way to avoid this is to simply perform certain actions away from the public view.
2- When you want to gain something out of it
This again is being a bargainer, only doing an action in order to attain a result. One should prioritize and not guarantee themselves anything but the pleasure of God from any deed carried out.
3- Self Satisfaction from the action
This is one to be wary of since it is about pride. One might have done something and believed it to be for the sake of Allah but then afterward they feel prideful of their action and carry enigma that they are better than others. This foils any intention a person may have had if their intention in the beginning does not match their motive at the end. The best way to avoid this is to remain humble and not expect any outcome or credit.
Sincerity is a result of certainty. The lack of sincerity and the suffering ostentation relate to the wavering faith of a person. There is a distinction between the awareness of faith and the certainty of it and the latter completes the circle of a believer’s faith by validating their intentions.

14 Years since 9/11: What has changed?

By: Hussein Al-Rumaithi

The course of modern history was changed on the morning of September 11, 2001, when four coordinated terrorist attacks by Al-Qaeda (Islamic Terrorist Group) on symbolic United States landmarks took place. The casualties of these attacks were over almost 3000 people dead and over 6000 injured, as majority of these casualties were in New York City (World Trade Towers). The US government under the administration of President George W. Bush conducted several foreign and domestic policies, which are still affecting the global politics until this day. In addition, many of the current political developments are directly linked to those events and the policies placed after the attacks by the US administration and other western states.

However, as Muslims, whether residing in the west or the Middle East, the political developments and policies have influenced our lives in various ways, which have often created many challenges and struggles. The pre-emptive approach adopted by many western states, became the rationale behind persecution and detainment of many innocent Muslims, as they were placed under surveillance and black lists, for their last names, acquaintanceship, family affiliations, profession and expertise. In addition, rendition of several Muslim US-Citizens was revealed in the headlines, where individuals were subjected to torture and excruciation in foreign countries by the request of US government. The Taliban regime in Afghanistan was toppled, as a massive western coalition invaded that country, since the base of Al-Qaeda was believed to be in Afghanistan. In 2003 the United States and Britain alongside other countries invaded Iraq (Operation Iraqi Freedom) and toppled the notorious regime of Saddam Hussein. Drone attacks were ordered by the US administration inside Muslim countries, which targeted terrorist sites and groups, which (mistakenly) took the lives of innocent people. The rise of Islamophobia in the west and public criticism of Islamic principles and teachings was witnessed in several countries, which set a precedent, as satiric cartoons of Prophet Mohammad were drawn in Europe, which created global outrage among Muslims.

In addition, some political observers believe that even the regime changes in the Middle East, known as the Arab Spring were related to 9/11, and the policies and event post those attacks, as the tendencies of western powers in the region were shifted and changed. Regardless, the events in planet earth are currently being labeled as pre-9/11 and post 9/11, which shows the impact of this date on all aspects of life upon the entire humanity in general.

Therefore, it would be beneficial to dissect the new conditions and variables within Islam as a religion and Muslims as general, which have been caused by those events. The necessity of this dissection is derived from the notion that within each misfortune or struggle, an opportunity presents itself. Therefore, as Muslims we must apprehend and acknowledge the opportunities that have presented themselves to us, post September 11, 2001.

9/11 & Islam

To be precise, the negative impact of 9/11 was majorly on Muslims and Middle Easterners, as arguing that a religion followed by over 1 billion people is entirely violent is a bogus and absurd claim. Therefore, Islam as a religion not only did not suffer from the attack of 9/11, it can be argued that Islam did benefit from the aftermath of those events. According to many statistics and polls, Islam was the leading topic searched on the Internet globally post 9/11, as many people (non-Muslims) wanted to know more about the religion, those attackers claimed to follow. The curiosity within these researches came from the fact that many Muslims had lived in the west, and many non-Muslim had interacted with them through the years, and nothing unordinary was sited. Therefore, it was essential to find out, whether all Muslims were adopting such extreme view, or whether Islam did support such extreme ideology.

In addition, the attack of 9/11 opened the eyes of many observers and non-Muslims, upon many essential and necessary details about Islam and its different ideologies, as Muslims were not viewed through the same scope. The difference between Wahhabism, mainstream Sunni Islam, Shia Islam and other Islamic sects was being distinguished and outlined, which was enabling non-Muslims to make more precise and thorough statements about Muslims and Islam. Nonetheless, the same results were mandating Muslims to outline the roots of radicalism and terrorism in their religion, which resulted in several academic works that identified the source of fundamentalism in Islam. In addition, due to the attacks by Anti-Islamic activists and groups that Islam was a violent religion and its prophet spread his religion through coercive means, Muslim were learning about the different methods to defend their religion.

9/11 & Muslims

No one can deny that 9/11 attacks were behind many limitations placed upon Muslims around the globe, where they were subjected to verbal, physical, social and even financial abuses. There are hundreds of cases in North America and Europe, where Muslims were subjected to racism, unnecessary screening, and physical abuses. Therefore, Muslims were faced with new necessities and priorities that mandated them to establish organizations and institutions that defend them and treat their struggles through legit and legal means.

In addition, the retaliation methods adopted by the United States and other western states in their war on terror, or their security measures were used by many radical scholars and preachers to revive new means of radicalization. Although these policies and measures will never justify the actions of terrorist groups, but western presence in Muslim Lands, Neo-Colonialism, Abu Gharib torture photos and other titles were used to draw new blood for radical and terrorist groups.

Therefore, Muslims were mandated to more active in various methods to defend their religion on two fronts. The first front was before the external attacks on Islam and its prophet, which even pushed many second generation Muslims to enter universities and higher education institutions to study social sciences. Therefore, we have witnessed many more Muslim students in Political science departments, journalism, criminology, sociology and security agencies. These development helped the Muslim communities in west to develop modern means and methods to defend themselves and secure their freedoms and rights.

The second front was among Muslims themselves, as Muslims were mandated to challenge radicalism within their own circles. Many Islamic centers and institutions were reviewing their policies and sermons to ensure they promote the peacefulness of Islam and reject any notion of fundamentalism. In addition, if bad apples were not contained, many communities reported them to the authorities to place them under surveillance or even detain them. Nonetheless, even mainstream Muslims were more cautious about their actions and conducts in their homes and in public, as they did not want to give any implications that they have radical tendencies.

Conclusion:

It is argued by many academic scholars and observers that majority of terrorist attacks around the world, were motivated by political struggles, where Islam was used as a legitimacy cover. However, whether political policies or religious ideologies were behind those development, the aftermath of 9/11 forced Muslim to develop new means for asserting their co-existential tendencies within the societies they reside in. In addition¸ the political and religious awareness among Muslims has been dramatically increased, which helps Muslims prevent radicalization and western societies understand Muslims better.

Shia Wisdom condemned the Suicide Bombing of Shia Mosque in Kuwait

Few weeks ago, when the suicide bombing in the Eastern Provinces of Saudi Arabia targeted the innocent worshippers inside Shia mosques, many political observers suggested the wave of violence will reach other places. Today we stand in sorrow and affliction to mourn the fallen men and children, who lost their lives while worshipping their lord during the holy month of Ramadhan. This time it was Shias of Kuwait’s turn to pay the price of being followers of Shia Islam, and deliberately be slaughtered without any consideration of time, place or justification.

Shia Wisdom strongly condemns the Suicide bombing of Imam Ja’afar Al Sadiq mosque in Kuwait, which consumed the lives of several innocent people and injured many others. Meanwhile, the Kuwaiti government is mandated to re-organize its security forces and intelligence services, as presence of ISIS affiliates is very clear and obvious in Kuwait. Kuwait is one of the few countries in the region, where the social fabric among the different groups of society has remained strong and stable. Neglecting the security needs and requirements of a substantial group of this society, will result in senses of abandonment and internal instabilities that will shake the foundation of co-existence in this country.

Unfortunately, the calamities have happened and there are grievances and afflictions among the masses. The Kuwaiti authorities should dissect and elaborate on the past and current similar events and take advantage of the lessons infolded within them to prevent any future incidents. The Shia Muslims of Kuwait are faced with substantial responsibility, as the entire world in supervising their reactions. Therefore, they are to practice the highest amount of self-control and coordinate new measure with the authorities to ensure the safety and security of Shia Muslims in this country is assured and safeguarded at all times.

Shia Wisdom and its staff send their condolences and prayers to the families of the innocent victims, and ask the almighty to grant them patient, tranquility and peace.

SHIA WISDOM
June 26, 2015

Ravished Innocence

Middle Eastern Children: Victims of Violence

By: Hussein Al-Rumaithi

I have written several articles, journals, researches and opinion pieces that have been published on this site and other websites, with an intend to simplify some of the most complex notions and matters the Muslim World is currently facing. I used historical facts, social principles, religious fundamentals, political doctrines and intellectual evidence to clarify numerous distortions and rouge stereotypes that have been brought upon my religion and sect. I have been contacted by several groups and individuals, inquiring about certain topics and issues about Muslim societies and political foundations. I have campaigned against tyranny, oppression, brutality, illegal political conducts, illegitimate political regimes and policies and other destructing notions, which have brought nothing but calamities and grievance. I have campaigned for freedom, individual liberties, religious freedom, freedom of expression and tolerance through different methods to present an alternative picture about the religion that I follow and worship my God through. BUT, couple of days ago, I saw a picture that was taken by Osman Sagirli at Atmen refugee camp in Turkey near the Syrian border. The picture portrayed a four years old Syrian girl, who surrendered and raised her hand front of a camera, thinking the camera is a deadly weapon. The picture put me in tear and made me speechless, not knowing how to describe the feeling of that little girl that made her give up on life and accept death with such innocence and calmness.

I was a victim of many brutalities and heartless actions, which are still being revived on daily basis to keep me alert and prepared for defending my fellow humans. I was beaten, I was insulted, I was humiliated, I saw my father being arrested, I saw my father being beaten, I saw my father being taken away to an unknown place, knowing he might not come back. I witnessed my mother being slapped by a police officer, we were chased by police officers when we tried to flee the hell we were living in, we had to walk through a landmine, which made us picture what death would look like. We had to live through a war zone to cross into another less evil place, hoping we would be safer and happier, but I NEVER GAVE UP ON LIFE. No matter what the conditions were, I never thought about death as an option, as I was planning and picturing a brighter future for myself, which made those vicious experience as a classroom for me, with a brutal teacher named life. Therefore, I am still trying to imagine the atrocities this child has been through that made her accept death and forget about hope at such a young age.

How many deaths has this child seen that made her innocent mind convinced death is easy to confront? How many guns has she had to face, which made her accustomed to the fact that she has to raise her hand to anything that is pointed at her? How long has it been since the last time she spent hours playing and being a normal child, instead of spending hours in wreckage and remains of her demolished house? What kind of life is she currently living that is still similar to the violent days she had to go through, which is preventing her from forgetting guns and death? Does she know about her father’s murder and is she considering death as a way to reunite with him?

I don’t think my questions are anywhere near the horrors and vicious days and nights this girl has been through. It is not a matter of innocence anymore, as some might argue, when they see this photograph. The notion of innocence has been seized and this child is left with horrific memories that need years and years of therapy and hospitable environment to make her put her past behind and look at life optimistically again.

However, I must conclude by talking to state leaders of Middle East. What is this precious goal and purpose that makes it legitimate for you to ravish the innocence of our children? Is it national security? Is it sovereignty? Is it the tendency to lead the region? Is it oil and the enormous revenues? Is it political survival? What is it that has transformed you into monsters and war lords, thirsty for blood and destruction? What kind of security and sovereignty are you planning to have with these types of grievances and hate being formed within your future generations? Who are you accumulating the revenues for? Is it your own families and surrounding circles or is it your population? Well, you will not have a population to rule and spend these revenues for. The holy Quran portrays killing an innocent soul to killing the entire humanity. I wonder how many entire humanities have you (Middle Eastern Leaders) killed and are still killing?

February Report: Shia Wisdom Internal Report

Shia Wisdom’s February publications included a wide range of topics and subject that covered numerous aspects, which are linked to contemporary and socio-historical notion. The articles published in February covered matters relating to Politics, Religious Studies, Social Studies, history, economy and scientific matters from around the globe. As always the main goal of Shia Wisdom is spread of Shia awareness among our readers to give them an alternative perception about what Shia Islam is really about, and what are the true and bias opinions of this Islamic sect about different matters in this world.

  • Reviewing Hermeneutic. Relativity of Truth, Knowledge & Texts – Part 3. This article written by Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi, was the third part of a philosophical, intellectual and religious research about RELATIVITY and its implications in notions of knowledge and intellect. The series are based on the thoughts and opinion of Ayatollah Sayed Murteza Al-Shirazi, who currently resides in Najaf, Iraq.
  • Jordanian Pilot, Charlie Hebdo and others VS Shia Victims (When double standards become a norm). Written by Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi, this article shed some light on the notion of double standards and marginalization against Shia Muslims and their calamities, when it comes to receiving media coverage. The main argument of this article included the case of Charlie Hebdo and the captured Jordanian military pilot and how the International Media played a big role in creating an enormous propaganda for them, while hundreds of similar cases were abandoned.
  • Voice of Human Justice: Ali Ibn Abi Talib (Politics never bends Ali. Ali bends politics). Part 1, Part 2. This article, which was written by Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi, shed the light on the life of Imam Ali and his political and social conducts, which are still the perfect examples form humans around the world. This article presented historical examples from the life of Imam Ali and his legacy in the Islamic World, and how he presented the true nature of Islam and its tolerance and mercy.
  • Youth of Karbala visit the Armenian Orthodox Cathedral in Baghdad. Shia Wisdom published a report about a group of Shia youth from Karbala, Iraq (Vision Organization), who visited the Armenian Orthodox Cathedral as part of harmony week between religions and sects. Both parties discussed the current state of Iraq’s struggle against ISIL and the other challenges, which Iraq is facing.
  • Do Muslims need immaculate culture? This was an article based on the quotes and statements of his Excellency Grand Ayatollah Sayed Sadeq Al-Shirazi about the notion of immaculacy and immaculate culture. Translated by Hassan Hadi, the article presented an intellectual and cognitive definition of the subject and gave a clear resolution for the question.
  • Role of Muslim Youths in the West. Part 1, part 2 and part 3. Written by Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi, this article was divided in three parts and included a thorough dissection and induction in the thoughts and opinions of late Imam Al-Shirazi, who is one of Shia Islam’s greatest scholrs of modern era. The articles present a clear and direct guideline for an Muslim youth residing in the west, and how he/she must act and behave in western societies.
  • OFFICIAL STATEMENT. Shia Wisdom condemn the Copenhagen terror attack
  • Islamic Political System. A brief but yet thorough dissection by Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi, about the difference between political Islam and Islamic Politics, which sheds the light on current and previous cases of Islamic states.
  • Current turmoil of Middle East and Emergence of ideological identities. Also written by Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi, this article sheds the light on the emergence of ideological and neo-political identities and ideological struggles in the Middle East after the ARAB SPRING.
  • Why most of Shia Imams are buried in Iraq? (Iraq & Shia Muslims). A historical, socio-political article written by Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi about Iraq and history of Shia Islam and Iraq specifically. The article dissects the rationale behind the presence and burial of majority of Shia Imams in Iraq and its impact on this country, from a political, religious, social and ideological perspective.
  • Journey of a Muslim convert to Shia Islam. This article was written by Brother Robert Silva, about his experience in averting to Shia Islam after converting to Islam. Silva gives a thorough and precise set of factors and reasons behind his decision to choose Shia Islam as his faith. Find out about Robert Silva’s journey by clicking on the following link:
  • Science & religion are compatible. Written by Ali Reza, this article presented a Quranic, narrational and scientific facts about the compatibility of science with religion of Islam.
  • Why does a Shia Muslim follow a scholar? Concept of Taqleed. This article unveils the rationale behind following a jurist, which is the responsibility of each adult and sane Shia Muslim. Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi dissects the logical, religious and ideological evidences from Shia literature, which cover the notion of Taqleed in Shia Islam.
  • The current scholars of Shia Muslims. Who are the scholars that Shias around the globe follow? Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi presents a brief but precise biographical and intellectual background about the current Shia Muslim jurists, who are followed by millions of Shia Muslims around the world.
  • Is there an unaskable question in Islamic belief? A nice and sensitive article about some of the most taboo and sensitive issues in Muslim World. Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi gives a thorough and intellectual dissection about the notion of unaskable questions in Islam and how they were developed out of political tendencies.
  • Greatest Shia scholars of all time. Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi provides the readers of Shia Wisdom with a list of scholars, who are considered the greatest among Shia Muslims. The scholars mentioned in the article as argued by Dr. Al-Rumaithi have developed methods and conclusions for Muslims and the world, which are still useful in present day. The matters and subjects that those scholars were active in cover a wide range of sciences like, philosophy, mathematics, astronomy, engineering, physics, medicine, theology and etc.
  • Muslims & Contemporary Challenges (Part 1 & part 2). Dr. Hussein Al-Rumaithi’s article talks about the contemporary challenges in the Muslim world, which are preventing development and reform. Dr. Al-Rumaithi analyzes a set of intellectual, social, political and economic challenges as the struggles of modern Islamic societies.
  • International Mother Language Day in Karbala. Sponsored by Vision Organization and UN Mission and Vision organization for culture and development, the youth of Karbala joined a workshop, which unveiled new projects and cultural activities like Youths Without Borders in Karbala and Iraq. Numerous academic and political Iraqi figures took part in the workshop and talked about their opinion in regard of the subjects discussed.

 

February Report. What Has Happened in the Muslim World?

By: Hussein Al-Rumaithi

The month of February was a month of usual hardships and calamities for Shia Muslims in the Middle East, which took the lives of many innocent people only because of their belief. Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, Yemen and other parts of the Muslims world witnessed some brutal attacks against Shia Muslims and as usual there was minimal coverage regarding these massacres.

Iraq:

  • 11 people and 50 others were wounded in a crowded market in the Shia town of Balad Ruz north of Iraq Capital Baghdad.
  • 16 people guarding the Holy Shrine of Imam Al-Askari in Samara were killed along with 31 others wounded in a car bomb.
  • ISIL attacked the national history Museum of Mosul and destroyed many historic and ancient artefacts.
  • A car bomb in a western Baghdad Shia neighborhood killed four citizens and injured many others.
  • A car bomb kills 3 Iraqi citizens and injures many others in Abu Dashir neighborhood of Baghdad.
  • Undisclosed number of victims were killed in a car bombing in the famous Shorja Market of Baghdad.
  • 7 people were killed in a Shia neighborhood in New Baghdad.
  • ISIL fighters demolish a Shia shrine in the city of Mosul.

Syria:

  • The small towns of Al-Nubbal and Al-Zahra near Aleppo, which have a Shia majority were brutally attacked by Al-Nusra front and until this day the real number of victims have not been confirmed. These two towns have been accused of supporting the regime of Bashar Al-Assad due to their faith, and they have been placed in a long blockade for months. The food and water supply for these two towns have finished for a long time and news from the towns suggest sever starvation and deadly diseases are ravishing the residents.
  • A car bomb kills 11 people in the town of Sayeda Zainab, where the shrine of Sayeda Zainab (daughter of Imam Ali & Lady Fatima Al-Zahra) is located.

Pakistan:

Month of February was a horrific month for Pakistan, as the country witnessed several attacks in different places with car bombing and gun men storming mosques. The February 17th bombing in Lahore took the lives of several people and wounded many others. In addition, on February 13th, three suicide bombers entered a Shia mosque in the city of Peshawar and stormed the worshipers inside the mosque, killed and injured dozens of Shia Muslims, which was announced as the deadliest attack in February.

In addition, three other Shia Muslims were killed, when a terrorist attack targeted a Shia mosque in Pakistani capital Islamabad. Another attack on a Shia mosque in Southern Pakistan took the lives of many others and injured many more. The total number of victims for the month of February in Pakistan has been announced as 68 killed and 176 injured in 35 terrorist attacks across Pakistan.

Afghanistan:

Mohammad Ashraf, governor of Zabol province in Afghanistan announced that 30 Shia Muslims were kidnapped and taken to an unknown destination. However, no group has claimed responsibility for this action, but it is believed these Shia Muslims have faced a deadly fate and the possibility of their return is very minimal.

Bahrain:

  • 72 Shia Muslims were stripped out of their citizenship in Bahrain for their activities against the Bahraini government, which has been crushing the Shia majority of this country due to their efforts to gain some rights and freedom.
  • A dozen of women were taken into custody in different parts of Bahrain, due to frail and weak allegations of causing instability and unrest in the country.
  • Many Shia clergymen including Sheikh Ali Salman (leader of Al-Wifaq) opposition party were taken into custody.
  • Police forces of Bahrain attack several protests and storm them with tear gas and live ammunition, which leads to death of several Shia citizens.
  • The government of Bahrain closes and demolishes several Shia mosques and centers in Bahrain.

There has been other actions and arbitrary measure against Shia Muslims all over the Middle East, which the details are not available at the current time. The conditions of Shia Muslims is worsening in the Muslims world and the hatred toward them is being fuelled by concentrated Arab Media, which is using such coverage for political reasons to gain political momentum in the region.

International Mother Language Day in Karbala

By Mohammed AlSafi

A workshop on the occasion of the International Mother Language Day was held in Karbala, Iraq with focus on the Arabic language and the Shabaki language as examples. (See Wikipedia for Languages of Iraq).

Sponsored by United Nations Mission and Vision Organization for Culture and Development 

International Mother Language Day in KarbalaThe workshop took place in Rotana hotel in karbala which was organized by Vision Organization for Culture and Development and it was sponsored by the United Nations Mission in the city of Karbala under the project Youth without limits 2015.

The organization hosted the renowned researcher Mr. Abdul-Zahra Agha of Hema Center for Studies and Dr. Ali Mohammed Yasin, a professor at the University of Karbala, and the representative of the United Nations mission UNAMI in Karbala as well as  Mr. Ali Kamona and a number of other researchers and social activists from Karbala and several other places.

The guests were welcomed by Mr. Mohammed Hossam speaking behalf Visions organization at the beginning of the workshop and he talked about the aims and projects of Vision Organization in the coming period, especially “Youth Without limits ” project, then Mr. Ali Kamona which considered this workshop as the first of its kind in Karbala city spoke about the importance of the celebration of the international days and take advantage of the activities of intellectual and cultural considering their significant impact on the community, and at the same time these activities give a message of love and peace to every one. He also spoke about the origin of the event and how it was taken as an international day since 1999.

Mother Language Day IraqAfter that Mr. Abdul-Zahra Agha started his talking with his great thanks to the organization for this hosting and caring about the Shabaki component and the importance of the real communication between the components of Iraq as a real project for a peaceful coexistence and save the great heritage of the Iraqi nation. He also spoke about of the Shabaki language roots and some of the vocabularies of the language and how the emergence of some of their intellectual and educational schools, his great fear was of the demise of their language especially after the occupation of the ISIS terrorist groups to their home in Nineveh plain, which led to the displacement of the majority of their population. Dr. Ali Mohamed Yassin criticized those who forgot to pay the enough attantion to this occasion from the governmental agencies and the academic specialists to celebrate the mother language day, while a group of young activists establish a cultural activity to celebrate their own language and their great heritage, and he talked about the importance of the Arabic language and the needs of today’s educational books of the schools for a development simplified to mimic the reality after the cultural and electronic invasion that our culture is witnessing these days.

After that the discussions and questions in the workshop started with the researchers by the participants, and then the civil activist Mohammed Maash of Visions organization for Culture and Development confirmed that we will formulate the discussions of this workshop to recommendations to give them to the representation of the United Nations mission and the stakeholders to leave the real impact on the society about the languages in all of Iraq and especially the Arabic and the Shabaki language.

Voice of Human Justice: Ali Ibn Abi Talib. (Part 2)

Part 2 (Things only ALI would do)

By: Hussein Al-Rumaithi

Paul Salamah the famous Lebanese poet and author writes about Ali and says: Truth has been so evident for a Christian that he identifies himself as follower of Ali. If Ali was not a messenger, then his creation and attributes were prophet-like. Therefore, O’ sky be my witness and O’ earth acknowledge that I love Ali and don’t say Shi’as are the only followers of Ali, when every impartial person is a Shi’a.

These were the words of a Christian writer about Imam Ali and what it means to read about Ali and what it means to follow Ali, since Ali has defined perfection and everything noble in his conduct and personality. In the previous part, I stated some of the stories, which showed the noble attributes of this great man, and in this part I will continue by giving more examples about the beauty of Ali’s presence.

Ali Defines Justice, Tolerance and

Coexistence

It is narrated that one day Imam Ali the caliph of Muslims had a dispute with a Jewish man about an armor, where Imam Ali claimed the armor was his and the Jewish man denied the allegation. Therefore, Imam Ali asked the Jewish man to come with him to the Judge and resolve the matter before him. The Jewish man accepted the offer and went with Imam Ali to the judge. The judge heard the story from Imam Ali, and then asked him: do you have a witness to testify the armor is yours? Imam Ali replied: Yes my son Hussein is my witness, and his son Imam Hussein testified that the armor was his father’s. The Judge asked Imam Ali once more, if he had a second witness, and Imam Ali said that he does not have a second witness. Therefore, the judge ruled in favor of the Jewish man, and said due to absence of sufficient witnesses the armor belongs to the defendant. Imam Ali, accepted the ruling and was about to leave the place, when the Jewish man said: you are the caliph of Muslims, and you brought me here to a Judge, and the Judge ruled in my favor, and you are fine with this notion. You are the true successor of Mohammad. You were right, the armor is yours. It fell of your camel when you were leaving for a battle, and I took it. Then the Jewish man converted to Islam, when he saw the tolerance of Ali and his Justice and acceptance of others.

Ali Defines Justice, Tolerance and Coexistence 2

Caliph of Muslims, Imam Ali was walking in the Bazar with his companions one day and he witnesses an old man begging in the street. Imam Ali, asks his companions: why is this man begging in my state? They reply by saying that he is an old Christian man. Imam Ali tells them: How can you say such a thing, you used his as a member of the society when he was young and full of energy and now that he needs help, we offer him nothing? Then Imam Ali, orders his companions to address the needs of that Christian man and take care of his necessities and provide for him.

Satisfaction Equals Dignity

One of the companions of Imam Ali witnesses the cloak, which Imam Ali is wearing is very old and in poor condition and it is falling apart. Therefore, he tells Imam Ali, O’ master of the faithful, you are the caliph of Muslims and your cloak is in very poor condition. Why don’t you buy a new one and throw this one away? Imam Ali replies: I became the caliph and I only had this cloak and I am leaving my post with this only cloak as well. I don’t people to say Ali used his position to buy fancy and new cloths for himself, when there is a possibility that I have a needy man/women in my state.

Without pointing fingers, I must say the closet of many state leaders and officials cannot hold the expensive suits and clothing they keep buying, when there are homeless people in their nations.

Ethics, Morals and Mercy at All Times with Everyone, Even the Enemy.

During the battle of Seffin, which was one of the battles Imam Ali had to face during his Caliphate, his army was against the corrupt governor of Levant Muawiya Ibn Abi Sufyan. Imam Ali had replaced Muawiay with another governor, but Muawiya rejected leaving his post and remained in Damascus and waged a war against Imam Ali. The two armies met in the modern Iraqi-Syrian border region, in what is today called the city of Reqqa, which hosts the Euphrates as well. Therefore, at one stage during the battle the army of Levant took control of the river and banned the army of Imam Ali from accessing any water. However, during a maneuver the army of Imam Ali was able to regain control over the river and make the other army withdraw. Nevertheless, the action that made everyone including the army of Muawiya be in state of shock, was that Imam Ali did not ban the other army from accessing water. When he was asked about the rationale behind his decision, he replied: if we do the same thing they did, then there is no difference between us and our battle here is waste of time. We are fighting for values and morals and we are the followers of Mohammad, who was the peak of ethics and morals.

No Place for Negativism

It is narrated during the battle of Seffin, some members of Imam Ali’s army were gathered around each other and were cursing and insulting the army of Muawiya. Imam Ali was passing by and he heard his those men in his army talking about their enemy in that kind of degrading manner. He stopped and hold those men: do not be cursers and insulters. Talk about, what they did and what they do, it will be more appraised and valued for evidence.

This notion shows that Imam Ali wanted to teach the future generations about the value of being positive in all situations, and negativity against any side would have negative results. Just viewing the candidates ads during the elections would show how negativity would actually lower the chances of a candidate, when he/she could be offering his/her alternative programs and solutions for the society they are running for.

TO BE CONTINUED.

Voice of Human Justice: Ali Ibn Abi Talib

Politics never bends Ali(a). Ali bends politics

(Part 1)

By: Hussein Al-Rumaithi

The main principle difference between Shi’a and Sunni Muslims lays in the concept of succession after Prophet Mohammad and Imam Ali has the primary role in this event, since Shi’a Muslims claim he is the rightful Caliph after the Prophet. However, Imam Ali remains the only person from that era, who everyone agrees was the most pious, truthful, brave, knowledgeable, generous, tolerant, wise, sagacious and dependable after the prophet. Imam Ali himself, compares his devotion and following to the prophet to the following of a weaned camel to its mother. This assimilation is an ancient Arabic quote that shows the extent of devotion one person has to another, where it is narrated if the Prophet and Ali were together, there was only one footstep.

Regardless, of the historic events, which led to marginalization of Imam Ali, this article will bring few examples to show how Ali as a political leader was, and why the United Nation has named him the most just and wise ruler in history. The Muslim world today is facing some of the hardest challenges, and the modern era has proven the leaders in the Muslim world are unworthy of trust and authority. The Muslim leaders claim to be followers of Mohammad and yet they have failed to implement the teachings of Mohammad. They mobilize their masses to protest satiric pictures of Prophet Mohammad and attempts to burn the Quran, yet they stab Mohammad in the back by their conducts and policies and don’t even follow the Quran. Imam Ali’s rule as the caliph of Muslims was short and civil clashes occupied most of his era, but the results of his policies in the Islamic empire are astonishing and outstanding. Therefore, in this part we will address some of the events recorded in history about Imam Ali and see what kind of leader was Ali.

Power Does Not Legitimize Revenge

When Imam Ali became the caliph of Muslims, some of his companions came to him and asked him why wouldn’t he reclaim the land of Fadak, which was taken unwillingly from his wife Lady Fatima Al-Zahra (daughter of Prophet Mohammad)? Why wouldn’t he take revenge for the hardships he was put through? This type of question seems to be very realistic, since most political dynasties and powers tend to wipe out and overthrow the orders and policies of previous governments. However, here is how Imam Ali replied to his companions, and set an excellent examples of humanity.

Imam Ali replied: in regard of your question, I would let the Prophet to be my model. His companions asked: how is Mohammad your model in this specific case? He answered: When the Prophet regained Mecca and took over his birth city, although the Quraysh tribe confiscated his house and wealth and showed him nothing but calamity and misfortune, the Prophet did not reclaim his properties and did not take revenge. In addition, I don’t want people to say, Ali has been waiting for this opportunity to take power and use his power to take revenge. This is a responsibility on my shoulder and I have to deliver. Nonetheless, I would never reclaim something, which Allah has been giving us good deeds for. Due to the oppression we were put through, we are receiving deeds from Allah, therefore, Allah would reclaim our rights on judgement day.

Favoritism Has No Place in Ali’s Government

When Imam Ali became the caliph of Muslims, he started implemented what is today known as social welfare, which is called (Bayt Al-Mal) in Arabic and it means, house of wealth. His decision to distribute equal shares to all Muslims from Bayt Al-Mal was not received well by beneficiaries of the previous systems. Therefore, many of the elites in Medina and other places left to Damascus and gathered around Muawiya, who was the enemy of Imam Ali and later on waged a war against Imam Ali.

However, the story that shows favoritism had no place in Ali’s conduct is the following: Aqeel was one of the brothers of Imam Ali and he was a blind man, known to be among the poorest of Kufa. Therefore, one day he comes to his brother the caliph of Islamic empire and asks him for an allowance on top of his share from Bayt Al-Mal, and tells Imam Ali: my share is not enough, and I need more and since your are my brother and the caliph, I hope you would grant me more than my share. Imam Ali puts a piece of coal in fire and when it the coal blazed well, he picked it up and brought it close to Aqeel’s hand. Aqeel screamed and shouted, he felt the heat from the blazed coal, and wondered why his brother would do such a thing. Imam Ali replied: this was a coal blazed by man, and you could not take the heat of it, how do you expect your brother to take the heat of hell-fire on judgement day?

As a reminder I would like to ask, how many leaders favor their relatives and close circles and give them all the benefits? I assume the list would be very long and continuous.

Imam Ali Defines Integrity

Two of the most prominent companions of Prophet Mohammad (Talha & Zubair), came to Imam Ali’s house and wanted to meet with him. They entered his room and sat down before him, and greeted him. He replied back by greeting them and asked them if the intention of their meeting is personal or if it is related to state affairs. Talha & Zubair said, their meeting was for a personal purpose and not a state-affairs related matter. Therefore, Imam Ali turns off the candle he was using and lit another one. They asked Imam Ali, why did he do that, and he replied: when you entered my room I was busy reviewing the affairs of Muslims and the Islamic nation, therefore, that candle belonged to Bayt Al-Mal and Muslims. You are here to see me and you have a personal matter with me, therefore, this candle I am using now, is from my own pocket and belongs to me not Bayt Al-Mal.

Interaction with the Public

One of the main reasons the gap between the political elites and the public is widening is the lack of interaction. As long as the political leaders are not aware of the pains and sufferings of the masses, they would never be able to build trust and dependable relation with their citizens. Therefore, in this case Imam Ali will put forward one of the most astonishing examples humanity has ever seen and heard in history.

It is narrated that one day, Imam Ali the caliph of Muslims was walking through the allies of Kufa, he sees a woman dragging firewood and groceries and she seemed very tired and in need of help. Imam Ali offers help to that lady and tells her, he would carry the firewood to her house, and since that lady did not know who Imam Ali was, she agreed and let Imam Ali help her and carry the big load of firewood on his back. During the way to her house, Imam Ali, asks the woman about her husband and why isn’t he doing this instead of her. She replies: my husband went with Ali to one of the battles and he was killed and she has five little kids in the house and no breadwinner. Imam Ali brings the firewood inside the house and tells the lady, today I want to help you in the house work, so why would you want me to do? She tells Imam Ali: I will cook the meal and you would take care of the children. Imam Ali agrees and starts playing with the kids, and he lets them ride on his back and during this whole time Imam Ali is shedding tears and telling the kids: PLEASE FORGIVE ALI, PLEASE FORGIVE ALI, PLEASE FORGIVE ALI. The woman was about to finish her house work and her neighbor enters her house and sees the caliph of Muslims (Imam Ali) playing with the kids and they are riding on his back. She shouts to the woman: do you know who this man is? She answers: no I don’t, he is a nice and generous man who offered me help and carried the firewood to my house and then we he heard about my situation he offered to stay and help with the children. The neighbor says: O’ woman, this man is the caliph of Muslims, he is Ali Ibn Abi Talib. The woman was shocked and did not know what to do and she starts apologizing to Imam Ali. Imam Ali, replies by saying: I am the one who should apologize to you, I am the one responsible for this hardship of yours. I apologize to you and your kids.

These were four examples setting the bar very high for all political leaders and there are hundreds of other examples from the life of this great man that we will discuss in coming parts. I leave you with these four examples to compare the conduct of our current leaders and the ones of Imam Ali.

To be continued…