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  Updated: June 23, 2005

Al-Imam Ali bin Al-Hussein (p)'s advices

By: Nashwa Al-Kadhim

Grandson of Master of Believers Al-Imam Ali bin Abi Talib (peace be upon him), Al-Imam Ali bin Al-Hussein Zain-ul Abideen As-Sajjad (peace be upon him), was born on 15 Jamadi-ul Awwal according to some traditions. On this propitious occasion, here are some pieces of advices from the fourth infallible Imam As-Sajjad (peace be upon him), quoted in Tohf al-Uqool, to his companions and followers:

O people! fear Allah and know that you will inevitably return to Him, when every one will see his good and bad deeds right before his very eyes, he will wish for the longest period of time to separate himself from his bad deeds. Allah warns you about Himself.

Woe is you, son of Adam! You are negligent but not neglected. Your death is the hastiest to you. It is approaching you with sure steps. It is targeting at you and is about to hit you and you will soon take your age in full, the angel of death seizes your soul, and you will be alone in your grave. There, your soul will be given back to you and the two angels, namely Munkar and Nakeer, will break in to your grave to examine and interrogate you so difficultly.

First of all, they will ask you about the Lord that you were worshipping, the Prophet whom was sent to you, the religion that you were following, the book that you were reciting (and taking as guide), and the Imam to whom you were adhering loyally.

Moreover, they will ask you how you have finished your age, and the source of your wealth and the fields in which you have spent your wealth. Be cautious, look upon yourself, and prepare answers for the test, examination, and interrogations. If you are faithful, knowledgeable of your religion, loyal to the truthful, and following Allah's disciples, Allah will prompt you to provide acceptable confirmation and will make you speak accurately, so that you will say the correct answer and you will be foretold of gaining Paradise and Allah's consent and the angels will receive you with comfort and happiness. If you are not, your tongue will stammer, your proof will be rejected, you will be unable to answer, Hell will be advanced to you and the angels will receive you with the anguish of the dwelling of boiling water and heat of Hell.

Furthermore, you - son of Adam - should realize that what is to come on the Day of Resurrection will be greater, more terrible, and more heartbreaking. On that day, all people will be gathered and others will be witnessing it. Allah, therein, will gather the ancient people and the later generations. On that day, the trumpet will be sounded and the graves will be turned over. That is the day of approaching when, because of hardship and frustration, their hearts will almost reach up to their throats. On that day, stumbles will not be raised, ransoms will not be accepted, apologies will not be excused, and repentance will not be admitted. Nothing will be there except the rewarding for the good deeds and the punishment for the evildoings. Any believer who has done a good deed that is as slight as an atom's weight will find its reward, and any believer who has done an evildoing that is as slight as an atom's weight will find its punishment.

Beware, O people, of sins and acts of disobedience (to Allah) against which Allah has warned and exhorted in the truthful Book and the articulate rhetoric. Do not feel secure from the retribution and destruction of Allah when the Satan urges you enjoying the transitory passions and pleasures of this world. Allah says: When a satanic thought starts to bother the pious ones, they understand and see the light. (Holy Qur'an 7:201)

Take God-fearing as the slogan of your hearts and always remember that Allah promised you of the good rewarding and warned you against the painful anguish when you will be returned to Him. He whoever fears something will certainly beware of it, and whoever bewares of something will desert it.

Do not be with the inadvertent ones who incline to the temporary pleasures of this world and who devised evil plans. Allah the Exalted says: Can they who have devised evil plans expect to be safe from the command of Allah to the earth to swallow them up, or from a torment which might strike them from an unexpected direction? Are they confident that Allah will not seize them while they are on a journey? They will not be able to escape from Allah. Are they confident that Allah will not slowly destroy them? (Holy Qur'an 16:45-47)

I warn you lest you will encounter the same retribution that Allah imposed upon the unjust ones and mentioned in the Book. Do not feel safe from suffering a part of the anguish with which Allah threatened the unjust people in His Book. Allah has surely provided other people as means of admonition to you. The very happy is that who learns lessons from others. Allah, in the Book, has also attracted your attentions to the punishments that He imposed upon the unjust people who preceded you. He says: How many unjust towns did We destroy and replace them with other nations. When they found our torment approaching them they started to run away from the town. We told them, "Do not run away. Come back to your luxuries and your houses so that you can be questioned." (When agony befell them,) They said, "Woe to us! We have been unjust. (Holy Qur'an 21:11-4)

You, people, may claim that these verses refer to the polytheists only. Allah says: We shall maintain proper justice on the Day of Judgment. No soul will be wronged the least. For a deed even as small as a mustard seed, one will duly be recompensed. We are efficient in maintaining the account. (Holy Qur'an 21:47)

You should know, O servants of Allah, that the proper scales and the records will not be maintained or opened for the polytheists, for they will be taken to Hell in hoards. The proper scales and the records will be maintained and opened for the Muslims.

Fear Allah, O servants, and know that Allah the Exalted has not like for any of His disciples to enjoy this world. Besides, He has not attracted their attentions to its pleasures, transitory amusements, or surface enjoyments. As a matter of fact, Allah has created this world as a field of testing people so that He will see which of them is most virtuous in the deeds.

By Allah I swear, examples were cited for you and a variety of evidences is shown to the heedful ones. O believers, include yourselves with the heedful ones. All power belongs to Allah. Abstain from the transitory pleasures of this world from which Allah has ordered you to abstain. He, the Most Truthful, says: The example of the worldly life is like the water sent down from the sky which becomes mixed with the earth's produce that people and cattle consume. When the land becomes fertile and pleasant, people think that they have control over it. At Our command during the night or day, the land becomes as barren as if it had no richness the day before, Thus, do We explain the evidence (of the truth for the people who reflect. (Holy Qur'an 10:24)

Do not be inclined to this world, for Allah has said to Muhammad (Speace be upon him and his pure progeny): Do not be inclined towards the unjust ones lest you will be afflicted by Hell. Besides Allah, no one can be your protector nor will anyone be able to help you. (Holy Qur'an 11:113)

Do not imitate those who are inclined to this world as if it is their permanent residential place and settlement. This world is certainly a short-lived lodging, a transitory house, and an abode of working. Supply yourselves with the good deeds before the scattering of this world's days and before Allah gives the permission to ruin it. As He created and originated it, Allah can ruin it, for He is its custodian and can give it in inheritance to anyone He wishes.

Allah provide you and us with aid to supply with God-fearing and asceticism, make you and us with the abstinent from the transitory pleasures of this world and the desirous for the reward of the life to come. We are only for Him, and through him can we do. Peace and Allah’s mercy and blessings be upon you.


 
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