Maxims of Imam Sadiq (A.S.)


Compiled by: Syed Zainul Abideen, Tehran, Iran

The rule of tyrants
All jobs and professions from the highest to the lowest ranks in service of the tyrant rulers are illegitimate. They are the doors which lead to oppression by the tyrant rulers. It is prohibited and illegal to work for them and to cooperate with them in business and trade because of their oppression. Whoever cooperates with them to a small or great extent shall be punished (by God) these are regarded as prominent ones amongst the major sins. By assisting the tyrants, truth is completely erased and falsehood is revived, oppression & corruption are perpetrated openly, heavenly Books like Quran are falsified, the Prophets and believers are murdered, mosques are demolished, traditions of God and his divine laws are changed, therefore it is prohibited to work for and serve the tyrants or to assist them and to earn or make profits by cooperating with them, except when it is indispensable, (blood and the dead corpse are permitted to be taken in dire conditions in order to save life of a person from death). (T.O P 332)

Trusting the people who have become cruel and fraudulent results in helplessness. (KhesaleSadooq P 220-335)

Loan makes a person lament during night and suffer humiliation during the day. (KhesaleSadooq P 220-335)
Note: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be, for loan often loses both itself and the friend.” This statement is wrong because a friend in need is a friend indeed. The loan should be given to the needy without any interest and it is better than giving him alms or charity.

Three indispensable persons
Imam Sadiq (A.S.) said: Three men are indispensable shelters for citizens of all countries in this world and in the hereafter, and people become inhuman & barbarous without them:
1. A learned and pious jurisprudent.
2. A beneficent ruler loved and obeyed by the people.
3. An experienced and reliable physician.(Khisal e Saduq P 20-335)

Recognition of three persons
Three persons cannot be recognized except in three situations:
1. The tolerant cannot be recognized except when annoyed.
2. The valiant cannot be recognized except in war.
3. A brother cannot be recognized except in need.(Khisal e Saduq P 20-335)

God’s command for eyes
Imam Sadiq (A.S.) said: Avoid looking at ‘namahram’ women so that others may not glance at your women. (T.O P:242)
Note: Looking at a Namahram woman is a minor sin but if a person goes on looking at her again and again it becomes a major sin.
Note: When a learned scholar was asked whether your wife is more beautiful or your sister- in- law (who used to visit them frequently)? The scholar replied: “I have never raised my eyes to look at my sister –in-law so I cannot compare the two.” Thus this learned scholar has taught us practically not to graze our eyes on the beauty of ‘namahram’ women. Even when watching Television one should not gaze at semi-naked women nor should one hear women with sweet and pleasing voice. Ali (A.S) never said salam to namahram women in order not to hear their voice.

Any secret that is between more than two persons will be exposed.(T.O P:251)

Deep thinking will increase your wisdom many times.(RozatulBehar V.2 P . 247)
Note: No one can blame a person for the religion he follows because he was born as monotheist, polytheist or atheist; he has not chosen his religion. So thinking is more important than indiscriminately worshipping anyone as God. Thinking with wisdom without stubbornness and obstinacy helps a person in attaining perpetual bliss.
Note b: Often people cannot follow God’s finalized religion because of wrong conceptions about it or its particular sect. They generalize particular cases or bear false notions without proper investigations so they make mistakes. Hence thinking with reason and wisdom is necessary to discover the truth.

A Preacher?
Invite people towards good deeds without using your tongue, so that they may observe your sincere efforts for righteousness. (Usule Kaafi v2 p 405)
An adviser who does not practice what he preaches, is like a hunter without a bow. (Rozatul Behar V.2 P . 203)
Note: Some people listen to your advice with one ear and let it flee from the other ear. Therefore the best way of preaching and reforming people is to practice what you preach.

Company moulds a man
It does not suit a believer to sit in a sinful gathering, wherein God is disobeyed especially when he is not able to prevent their disobedience. (Alkafi V. 2 p:372)

A person who is economical and moderate in life never becomes empty- handed or poor. (Rozatul Behar V.2 P 204)
Note: extravagance is like a small hole which empties a big kettle.

Zakaat for God’s blessings is munificence.
Zakaat of a high rank or position is mediation i.e. intercession or recommendation where necessary.
Zakaat of victory is general amnesty or forgiveness.(T.O. P:268)
Note: When the holy prophet (S.A) conquered Mecca he pardoned his enemies.
Note: Zakaat is a duty for purification of one’s evil self from greed, fraud, miserliness, hoarding and causing inflation, hard heartedness, cruelty and so on, so zakat is tazkiyah e nafs

A person who awakens a riot or sedition will himself become a prey to it. (T.O P:268)
A person who draws his sword for tyranny dies by the same sword. (Kashful Gummah . V:2 P:368)
Note: God states in the holy Quran: “And for the tyrants and the unjust there are no helpers.” (S 3:90) (This statement of God is also found in Baqara:270&Maedah: 72)
But we see all over the world that the tyrants and the unjust are assisted by so many people, mighty powers, weapons & wealth and they are helped even by those who are unjustly oppressed and tyrannized. No one should doubt the statement of God in the above Aayat because, no one is so truthful as God. All those who help the tyrants are also the tyrants and shall meet the same fate as the tyrants i.e. extinction by the same sword which they strike for tyranny.
But how do the oppressed help their oppressors? The oppressed should show their reaction to injustice and tyranny. They should not tolerate oppression otherwise the oppressed are regarded as helpers of the tyrant; they should fight in defense and achieve victory in the sight of God or martyrdom as taught by Imam Husain (A.S).
God states in the holy Quran: Do not reckon those slain in God’s way as dead, rather they are alive and are provided sustenance near their God. (3:169)

Three things indicate ignorance:
1. Changing friends
2. Giving up friendship without any reason
3. Searching and prying information which does not benefit.(Rozatul Behar V.2 P.230)
The morose fail to make friends & the prejudiced do not become wealthy. (Rozatul Behar V.2 P.247)

Commandments and prohibitions
Commandments and prohibitions are beneficial for the believers who accept advice as well as for the ignorant who seek knowledge, but those who wield power and position seldom follow God’s commandments and prohibitions and are ruined. (Rozatul Behar V:2 P:240)

A person asked Imam Jafar as- Sadiq (A.S) about the validity of three divorces at one time. The Imam replied: “such a divorce is not valid. (BA V.47 p 171)
Note: The famous Iranian emperor Muhammad Khoda Bandeh Iljaitu divorced the queen by announcing ‘Talaq, talaq, talaq’ at one time .The king was very unhappy about his behavior when the religious experts told him that the queen should marry another person called ‘Mohallil’ and then the king can marry the queen again if the mohallil divorces her.
Allamah Hilli heard about this problem of the king so he went to the court and sat by the side of the king and told him that the scholars of different sects of Islam have made a mistake so he may turn a deaf ear to them, because the divorce is not at all valid according to Islamic law as taught by God’s chosen guides the Imams, who are ‘Ahl az Zikr’ i.e. deeply rooted in knowledge for guiding people in all difficult situations.”
The king appreciated Allamah Hilli’s advice and was glad to follow the true religion as practiced by the Ahlebayt of the holy prophet (S.A).

The Flies
Once when Imam Sadiq (A.S) was with Mansour Davanaqi, a fly troubled the khalifa by sitting on his face again & again. The khalifa was extremely annoyed as he couldn’t get rid of the fly and he asked the Imam: “Why has God created the flies?” The Imam replied to him: “for humiliating the arrogant by means of flies.” Mansour had to keep quiet (as truth is often bitter to listen). (Tatamatul Montaha P: 119)
Note: The holy Quran states: Indeed those WHOM YOU SUPPLICATE BESIDE GOD, cannot create a fly even if they gather to do so, and if a fly snatches away something from them, they cannot rescue from it. Feeble is the claimant and what is claimed they do not esteem God as worth of Him. Surely God is the Most Powerful, the Most Mighty. (22:73-74)

The Shroud
When the eldest son of Imam Jafar Sadiq, viz, Ismaiel (A.S.) died, the Imam wrote the kalimah ‘Yashhado la Ilaha IllAllah’ on his shroud.
So People may also write supplications and Quranic surahs on their shrouds. It is said that a person who keeps his shroud with him, his life is prolonged by God.
Ismaiel (A.S.) was buried by his father and therefore Imam Kazim (A.S.) became the next Imam after the death of his father. The eldest son of Imam or prophets has no right to succeed their father as Imamat and prophethood are divinely appointed positions. Joseph (A.S) was not the eldest son but God appointed him as His prophet although he had 11 brothers.
Note: When Joseph said to his father: O father! I saw eleven stars and the sun and the moon, I saw them prostrating themselves to me.’ Prophet Jacob replied: “My son! Do not relate your dream to your brothers lest they should devise intrigues against you. Surely Satan is man’s open enemy.” (12:4-6)

Banishment from faith
A small thing which expels a person from faith is counting the faults and errors of his brethren to reproach them later on for their offences. (Ma’anial Akhbar P. 394)

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