In the name of Allah
The All Compassionate, the All Merciful
12 Rabial-Awaal 1439 (1 December 2017)
Islamic Universal Association
20 Penzance Place, Holland Park
London, W11 4 PG
Sins in Islam- Part 15
I quote below some relevant Ayahs from the Holy Quran pertaining to sins:
You see many of them vying in sin and exceeding the limits, and eating of
what is foul; certainly evil is what they have been doing.”
Why do not the learned men and the doctors of law prohibit them from
uttering what is sinful and from eating of what is forbidden? Evil is what
Imam Hasan Askari (a.s)
Today I would like to say a few words on Imam Hasan Askari (a.s) as he was martyred on the 8th of Rabial-Awaal. I will, however, continue with my discussion on the Holy Prophet (s.a.)’s hijrat from Mecca to Medina during my forthcoming session.
Imam Hassan Askari (a,s) was born in the city of Medina, on Friday, the 10th of Rabial-Thani, 232 Hijri. However, according to some tradition he was born in Samarah. He was martyred by poisoning on the 8th of Rabial-Awaal, 260 Hijri when he was 28 years. He lived for almost 23 years with his father, Imam Ali Naqi (a.s). After his father’s martyrdom, he took over the reins of Imamate for about 6 years which coincided with the regimes of the Abbasid Caliphs including Motaz, Mohtadi, and Motamed. He was martyred during the reign of Motamed and buried in Samarah by his father’s grave, which has been transformed into a great mausoleum and pilgrims from all over world come to pay their homage to them.
Imam Askari (a.s) left behind him, his only son, Imam Mahdi (a.s), who was 5 years old at the time of his death. He kept his birth a secret and concealed his affairs because the political situation was unfavorable at that time. The ruling Caliph searched relentlessly for his son and strived to know about his affairs because belief in the twelfth Imam had become widespread amongst the Shiites. In fact, the Imam never disclosed about his son in public and after his demise too the enemies never got the chance of recognizing him. It has been reported that Motamed attended the funeral of the Imam and when everyone had lined up to start the funeral prayer, his brother, Jafar, stood in front of the people to lead the prayer. Before he could start the prayer, a 5 year old boy, who was none other than Imam Mahdi (a.s), came out of the house, went near his uncle, shook his mantle and told him, “Set aside uncle, only an Imam can lead the funeral prayer of an Imam”. Jafar stepped aside and this 5 year old boy led the prayer. Immediately after the end of the prayer he went inside the house and could not be seen by his pursuers led by the caliph, Motamed, himself. It has been reported that it was at that very moment he went into occultation.
It has been reported that Imam Askari (a.s), despite spending his life under house arrest, prepared the Shiites for the occultation of Imam Mahdi (a.s). For the said purpose, he wrote many letters during the final days of his life which was delivered by his confidants to his followers wherein he notified them that his son, Imam Mahdi (a.s), the ultimate saviour of mankind and the last Imam would emerge. I reproduce below a letter that was addressed to Ali ibne Hussain alias ibne Babewayh Quomi, one of the great Shiite dignitaries and an Iranian scholar from Qom:
“In the name of Allah, the beneficent and the merciful
I sincerely hold fast to the Almighty’s chain of command. I am aware that the believer will gain prosperity both in this world and in his eternal abode and the sinner will face the torments of hell. Nobody deserves to be subjugated other than the tyrant himself who will encounter vengeance for his repressive acts. There is no deity other than Allah; peace be upon His humble servant, Mohammad and his pure progeny.
O’Ali Ibn Hussain! Be patient and hope for a respite as the Prophet has said: “My nation will be granted reprieve, from invariable grief, through my descendant who will emerge and inundate the world with justice and equity as it is filled with tyranny and oppression.”
O’Ali Ibn Hussain! Be patient and ask the Shiites to display patience. Verily, Allah will raise his slave to inherit the earth for He wishes that the pious should be prosperous. Hail to thee and to all our Shiites! Peace be upon Mohammad and his progeny.” (Manaqib, Volume 4, page 426).
Quomi would correspond with the Imam and on one occasion the Imam advised him in a letter, as follows: “I recommend you, the one who is dear to me, to be pious, forgive the misdemeanors of people, subdue your anger, look after your relatives and near ones, fulfill the needs of the distressed, have a clear insight and perception about your religion, learn the Holy Quran and be familiar with it as far as possible and be vigilant and cautious about your prayers and worship. Always follow my advice and make my Shiites follow them too.” (Same reference)