Unlike many political leaders of the world who embark on any mischievous act to win in political games, Imam Ali (A.S) never did such so.
“In these days the ignorant call it excellence of cunning. One who has been through thick and thin of life finds the excuses to be preventing him from implementing orders and observing prohibitions of Allah but he disregards them despite capability (to succumb to them and follows the commands of Allah), while one who has no restraints of religion seizes the opportunity (and accepts the excuses for not following the commands of Allah).” “I swear by God, Muawiyah is not cleverer than me. He is full of deceit and commits sin. If it was not because of the disgracefulness of deceit, I would be the most cunning man on earth.” “If it was not because of the religion and piety, I would be the cleverest man of the Arab world.”
Avoiding Haughtiness in Political Career
As the ruler of Islamic society, Imam Ali (A.S) had set his life upon avoiding haughtiness in his manner and conduct. On the other hand, he used to recommend his political managers to avoid haughtiness which is one of the results of love of management. He admonished his men against the destructive nature of power and rulership in making man haughty, unwise and falling into the voidance of insolence and conceit.
Therefore, the Imam reminded them of the Magnificence of God: “If the power you are enjoying makes you selfish and arrogant, then see how great is Glory of God, to learn a lesson, and the power He has upon you and that on Him there is no such power. Bearing this in mind will soothe your indocility, quenches your thirst for power, and returns to you your lost wisdom.”
Translated by: Sadroddin Musawi
1. Nahj ul-Balagha, Sermon 41, P. 83
2. Nahj ul-Balagha, Sermon 200, P. 318
3. Ali Akbar Rashad, The Encyclopedia of Imam Ali (AS), Islamic Research Institute for Culture and Thought, Vol. 6, Pp. 381-382
4. Ali Akbar Alikhani, Political Development in View of Imam Ali (AS), Nashr-e Baynalmelal (International Publishing Company), Tehran, Second Edition, Winter 2012, Pp. 273-274