"Allah is the Protecting Guardian of those who believe. He bringeth them out of darkness into light." — Holy Qur'an 2:257
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:: Candle Post #127 :: What is Unique About the Ismaili Imamat? ::
Ya Ali Madad. The 57th anniversary of our beloved NOOR Mowlï¿½nï¿½ Shï¿½h Karim Al-Hussaini's (a.s.) accession to the masnat of Imamat will be celebrated on July 11, 2014. On the occasion Imamat Day 2014, please accept our heartfelt felicitations!
May Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam grant peace, prosperity, happiness, barakat, higher spiritual enlightenment, spiritual & luminous tayid (help) and empowerment to you, your family & Jamat, and the worldwide Jamat. Ameen.
Let us first reflect upon the card which was prepared by the (late) Alwaez Rai Amiraly Amlani which was first published in 2002:
Table of Contents
Let us first look at the transliteration and translation of the first part of ayat 39:22 of the Holy Qur'an:
|'Afaman-sharahallaahu sadrahuu lil-'Islaami fahuwa 'alaa Nuurim-mir-Rabbih?'||'What! Is he whose breast (heart) God hath opened for Islam then he followed the Light from God?'|
Here is an explanation of this ayat which I have obtained from footnote 2115 (p. 1388) of 'The Holy Qur'an' translated by S. V. Mir Ahmed Ali, Second edition published in 1995:
'It is said that this verse was revealed referring to the First Holy Imam Ali-ibne-Abi-Taleb who was endued with the light of Islam and whose personal purity and spiritual excellence and that of the Holy Prophet was one and the same. Besides the Holy Prophet, Ali was the only one who never in his life bowed to anyone save God. About Ali the Holy Prophet has said:
'I and Ali are of one and the same Light'.'
The transliteration and transliteration of the verse 4:174 is:
|'Yaa-'ayyu-hannaasu qad jaaa-'akum Bur-haanum-mir-Rabbikum wa'anzalmaa 'ilay-kum Nuuram-mubiinaa'.||'O mankind! Indeed hath come unto you (an undeniable) proof from your Lord, and We have sent down unto you a manifest light.'|
The key words are 'Burhan' (Proof) and 'Nur-un-Mubin' (Manifest Light). Here is a further explanation of the these terms which I have obtained from footnote 644 (p. 439) of 'The Holy Qur'an' translated by S. V. Mir Ahmed Ali, Second edition published in 1995:
|'According to the interpretation of the Holy Ahlul-Bait—'Burhan'. i.e. the Manifest Proof means the Holy Prophet who appeared with the Holy Qur'an and the 'Noorun-Mubeen', i.e., the Clear Light, stands for the guidance through Imamat granted by Divine Grace, after the conclusion of the apostleship with the Holy Prophet.'
'Burhan'—proof, and 'Noor'—Light send down by God is the same that Qur'an explains in a simile 24:35-38 which manifested in the niche in some particular houses allowed by God to be raised above all and authorized His Holy Name to be remembered therein, wherein He is glorified night and day by such people whom no temporal business engages their hearts or distracts then from His remembrance. No light of the guidance of God can ever reach but through the medium of these holy ones. These holy ones can not but be of those of the linege chosen by God which excellence reaches its zenith and the summit in the divinely purified ones by God Himself. This fact is testified by the sixth Imam Jafar ibne Muhammad as-Sadiq:—
Now let us look article B from the Preamble of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslim constitution which describes the declaration and role of Ismaili Imamat in this world:
|'In accordance to the Shia doctrine, tradition, and interpretation of history, the Holy Prophet (S.A.S.) designated and appointed his cousin and son-in-law Hazrat Mawlana Ali Amiru-l-Mu'minin ('Alayhi-s-salam), to be the first Imam to continue the Ta'wil and Ta'lim of Allah's final message and to guide the murids, and proclaimed that the Imamat should continue by heredity through Hazrat Mawlana Ali (A.S.) and his daughter Hazrat Bibi Fatimat-az-Zahra, Khatun-i-Jannat ('Alayha-s-salam).'|
In his address to both Houses of the Parliament of Canada in the House of Commons Chamber, Ottawa on 27 February 2014, Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam articulated the Ismaili Imamat and his position as follows:
|"The Ismaili Imamat is a supra-national entity, representing the succession of Imams since the time of the Prophet. But let me clarify something more about the history of that role, in both the Sunni and Shia interpretations of the Muslim faith. The Sunni position is that the Prophet nominated no successor, and that spiritual-moral authority belongs to those who are learned in matters of religious law. As a result, there are many Sunni imams in a given time and place. But others believed that the Prophet had designated his cousin and son-in-law, Ali, as his successor. From that early division, a host of further distinctions grew up ï¿½ but the question of rightful leadership remains central. In time, the Shia were also sub-divided over this question, so that today the Ismailis are the only Shia community who, throughout history, have been led by a living, hereditary Imam in direct descent from the Prophet."
Source: Speech of His Highness The Aga Khan
Let us first look at the translation of the second part of ayat 39:22 of the Holy Qur'an:
|"Fawaylul-lil-qaasiyati quluubuhun-min-zikrillaah! 'ulaaa-ika fii zalaalim-mubin."||"Nay! Woe unto those whose hearts are hard against remembrance of God; those are in a clear error."|
Here is an explanation of this ayat which I have obtained from footnote 2115 (p. 1388-9) of 'The Holy Qur'an' translated by S. V. Mir Ahmed Ali, Second edition published in 1995:
|'The Holy Prophet was once asked as to what was the sign or symptom of any heart having being lighted with faith? He said "The discordance of the desires for this world which is only a temporary stopping place and the love of the hereafter which is the permanent abode.
Just as every step towards the right direction and towards the truth, naturally and automatically enlightens one more and more, and takes the individual nearer and nearer to the Divine Light, every step in the opposite side, i.e., towards falsehood, affects the natural retrogression of the spirit and takes the individual farther and farther away from the truth and ultimately, at a certain stage of reversion from the right path, the individual spirit automatically gets lost in the utter darkness in which none of his faculties could ever take any right step and the individual strays bewildered. On the other hand, those who proceed towards the truth, their march towards the Divine Light gets naturally faster and faster and ultimately the individual gets totally enlightened.
The Holy Prophet said: "Seek ye the fulfilment of your needs from the kind-hearted one of my adherents, for God has endowed them with mercy and seek not any help from the hardhearted ones for in those hearts has centered the wrath of God. God loves the kind-hearted ones who love others and guide them by preaching goodness to them and God loves not who are negligent of their duties to Him and spend the nights in vain engagements and playful activities and while away their time in idleness and luxuries.'
In Pir Pandiyat-i Jawanmardi, Imam NOOR Mowlana Shah Mustansir bi'l-laah II (a.s.) teaches us about enlightenment as follows:
|'Therefore, O believers, if you want to be alive in both worlds, perfect your faith, because (only) by the light of faith may you attain eternal life. And faith comes from and is perfected by the recognition and knowledge (ma'rifat wa shinakht) of the Imam of the time, and obedience and love for his followers. Therefore, follow your Imam, and be happy and united with each other amongst yourselves in order that you may be alive in both worlds, and in the hereafter you may become resurrected with the pious, with prophets and saints in the presence of the Imam, with the greatest joy at meeting each other again.' (Pages 4-5)|
NOOR Mowlana Shah Sultan Muhammad Shah's (a.s.) teaching pertaining to performing intense ibadat (including bandagi) in the month of Holy Ramadan was published in a booklet titled 'Laila-Tul-Qadr' by Alwaez Abualy A. Aziz (Page 11, Read Know No. 50; Shia Imami Ismailia Association for Tanzania, Dar es Salaam):
|'Now I am going to tell you about Iba'dat (worship). Always worship God. This is the month of Ramadan. In this month do more iba'dat. Every hour, every minute remember God. Do not forget Him. If you have forgotten Him and have become lazy then take heed that I am reminding you to remember and worship Him.' Kalame Imame Mubin Volume 1, page 23.|
The most powerful prayer is bandagi, which is a luminous prayer at the luminous time with a luminous word or the name of Ya Ali or Pir Shah. It is most important to perform bandagi because it creates the fuel that we need for our return journey to our Creator.
The aspect of Noor (Light) makes the Ismaili Imamat unique, therefore, let us perform the luminous dhikr of Noore_Karim Hazar_Imam with utmost humility and tenderness of the heart (length 4 min 41 sec; 6.5 MB) on the auspicious occasion of Imamat Day because it captures the fundamental concepts of Imamat succinctly:
Download Noore_Karim Hazar_Imam sound track in mp3 format; or
Download Noore_Karim Hazar_Imam sound track in wma format.
The lyrics are given below:
Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim
Noore Muhammad, Noore Quran; (1)
Noore Muhammad, Noore Ali; (2)
Noore Ali, Noore Karim; (3)
Noore Karim, Hazar Imam (4)
Noore Muhammad, Hazar Imam (5)
Noore Qur'an, Hazar Imam (6)
Noore Ali, Hazar Imam (7)
Noore Karim, Hazar Imam (8)
Al-hamdu lillahi rabbil 'alamin
Ya Ali, Ya NOOR Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam, create Sunshine in our hearts, light in our foreheads, and bless us all with the inner vision of the Truth!
Ya Ali, Ya NOOR Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam, grant the global Jamat luminous (noorani) and spiritual (ruhani) tayid (help) to advance materially, spiritually and intellectually. Ameen.
Haizinda — Qayampaya
(Our Present Imam is Living and His NOOR is Eternal)
Rakh Mowla je Noor te Yaqeen (Certainly, we trust in Mowla's Light only),
Tuesday, July 8, 2014
Edited and enhanced on Thursday, July 30, 2015
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