Issue No: 64
14th January 2011
9th Safar 1432
Imam Hassan Deserted: - The loneliest commander:
Whilst mobilising the masses to support him in confronting the terror and injustice spread by Muawiya, Imam Hasan addressed his followers:
“………. I am the sincerest of God's creatures in giving advice to them. I have not become one who bears malice to any Muslims nor one who wishes evil or misfortune to him. Indeed what you dislike about unity (jama'a) is better for you than what you like about division. I see what is better for you better than you see for yourselves. Therefore do not oppose my commands and do not reject my judgement. …..”
The people began to look at one another asking, "What do you think he intends by what he has just said? We think that he intends to make peace with Muawiya and hand over the authority to him. By God the man has become an unbeliever…..”
They rushed towards his tent plundering to the extent that they even took his prayer mat from under him. The desertion of the people increased with threats upon life of Imam leading to the Imam undertaking the peace treaty.
Who were being addressed and why?
These were the people who, after the martyrdom of Imam Ali, had pledged their allegiance to him as their leader. Some of them being his and his fathers’ devoted shias. Others were from the Kharijites who desired to fight Muawiya with every possible means, some were men who loved discords, and anxious for booty, some were doubters, some were followers of tribal leaders without reference to religion….
They all were practicing the rituals of salat, sawm,haj etc...The strategy of Muawiya had effected the people. What a mixed band of men they were…!!!
It can be seen that a reason for the Imam to make this address was to test his followers and make their situation clear with regard to obedience to him. In turn their commitment to the Thaqalayn.
Our world today:
We are passing through a period where the master of our Age- the Imam of our time- is in ghayba. We too fulfill the practices and rituals of Islam. We count ourselves as among the shias of the Imam.
Living amongst community of people of belief including muslims and of no belief we interact with people of all ideologies and thoughts. The selves –nafs- are greedy to be satisfied for their desires.
Today the strategies to lure one away from taqwa are very much in strong play like the strategies of Muawiya to lure the masses to his side. To fulfill the practices and rituals of Islam is not the end to cap our Taqwa.
The sincerity of devotion and obedience to the Imam can be overtaken such that one may end up no longer being from the devoted shias, but for name sake only.
Are we on guard that we do not slip into the mixed band of men as was during the time of Imam Hasan a.s.?
Wa ma tawfiqi illa billah
Fazle Abbas Datoo
Wessex Shia Ithna Asheri Jamaat