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Lectures >2001 Speeches > 24/08/2001

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

Ayatollah Al Ozma H.E. M. H. Fadlullah delivered two khotbas (at the Imamain Al-Hassanain Mosque) JamadiII 05, 1422h August24, 2001 (Several prominent religious scholars, dignitaries and thousands of believers attended the Jumu’a prayer).

Follow the Truth; Not Your Fathers.

The First Sermon

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful  

One of the obstacles that faced the prophets at various times and places, and which still faces the reformers, is emulating fathers and grandfathers, or those who hold a social and political positions. If the prophet came up with idea that is deferent than that of the fathers of his people they will confront him with the fact that they follow the doctrines, habits and traditions of their forefathers and reject all that does not conform with them. But why? If they are asked to explain why they don’t have any argument to support their attitude. It is a matter of emotion only.

Waking Tall

In this age too, you are destined to confront with those who find any new idea or religious edict different than what they are used to, whether in the domain of tribal traditions or in the general political and social life. If you come up with any thing different then what the people are used to they will condemn your act and say that you like the idea of “walking tall” and this in their belief is wrong and leads to isolation.

The religious scholars and their followers might also be used to a certain religious fatwa. When other religious authorities think that this fatwa needs to be changed they will be told that what you came up with, and I am not talking about my own experience only, does not conform with what the previous scholars said, forgetting that both old and new scholars are religious authorities with the same religious knowledge and the same ability to issue fatwas.

When Sayyed Muhsin Al-Alhakim, the famous religious authority, concluded for the first time that the People of the Book are not najis- impure- although he used to say for 50 years that they were najis, he was told by those around him that this fatwa will get him into trouble because it is unfamiliar. But the Sayyed was of a strong character and Told them: I have emulators and they have a problem which I found solution for.

Following the Lead

Regarding the Fatwa concerning the unbelievers, my own fatwa is more developed than that of Sayyed Al-Hakim.

I believe that all humans are tahir, Jews, Christians, Buddhists and atheists, Their impunity is one of the mind and not a physical one. And I would like say to those who denounced this fatwa, that when you reject a certain fatwa you should be a scholar to provide the argument and proof, or in the case of not being a scholar it is none of your business.

Emulation is divided into two categories. The first category is in the things you have no knowledge of, like when we emulate medical doctors or engineers. And then there is the issue of emulating in things you have, or you can acquire, experience in. In this case, you should not emulate.

In Islam, we believe, as Allah (SWT) tells us, that every person will stand before God (SWT) to defend all his actions and sayings. If you stand before God (SWT) and He asks you why did you take this stand or followed that road, and you answer that this is what my fathers believed in and that these are our traditions or this is what the general belief in this age is. Do you think that your fathers were prophets or religious scholars that ought to be followed.

Think first

Therefore, Allah (SWT) wants man , before taking any practical action, to study any stand or political line he wants to adhere in a way that will enable him to explain his reasons before God (SWT) on the Day of Judgment.

Moreover, God (SWT) wants us to think, investigate and weigh all issues. We should not follow anything in a blind manner. Even if we trust somebody, we should keep our eyes wide open. And if we hear anything we should go back and discuss it with those we trust, There is nobody who is above discussion, even the prophet himself used to be asked and he used to answer those who asked him. Imam Muhammad Al-Baker, who was also infallible, used to say to his companions:” If I tell you something you should ask me about its proof in the Holy Quran”.

Allah (SWT) wants the Muslims to be an enlightened community that fully understands the culture of the thought it adheres to.

That is why the Glorious Quran had pointed out in several Ayahs that one should not follow blindly what his fathers used to believe in, an attitude that is still prevalent in our times. The Quran says:

When it is said to them. “Follow what Allah has revealed. “they reply:” We will follow that where we found our fathers”, even though their fathers, were senseless men lacking in guidance”2:170?

We have witnessed this kind of behavior in our villages when the political leaders used to inherit the support of the people from their fathers. Such an act is irresponsible When you follow someone it should be because of his thought stand his adoption of the line of guidance. Being a good son does not mean that you ought to follow the ideas and commitments of your father, for each of you will be judged alone, and each if you will have to defend himself alone and explain why he believed in something or why he did the deeds he had done.

Thus when your father wants you to adopt an idea, discuss it with him and if you are convinced go ahead and adopt it , but do not adopt it because this is the will of your father.

In another Ayah the Quran says:

” When they commit an indecent act, they say:” This is what our father used to do before us. Allah Himself enjoined it”.

Say: “Allah does not enjoin what is indecent. Would you tell of Allah what you do not know?.” They replied:” It is the same whether you preach or not. That with which you threaten us is but a legend of the ancients. Surely we shall never be punished”.

” When it is said to them: ”Follow what Allah has reveled, they reply: we will follow nothing but what we found our fathers following.” Yes, even though Satan is inviting them to the scourge of Hell.”

If your father was a follower of Satan and he calls upon you to follow this line would you accept.

This is the true Islamic and Quranic line: It calls for each community to hold its responsibility in a separate and independent manner:

That was a nation which has passed away. There is shall not be questioned about what they did”.

God (SWT) wants us to liberate minds and never decide on anything accept after we discuss it thoroughly first.

That is what we should educate our children on following, so that no one will be able to cheat or deceive us, and so that we will not be dominated by those who want us to obey and not to think.

The Second Speech

In the Name of Allah, The Compassionate, the Merciful

Worshippers of Allah; (SWT) be pious, and do not be like herds of animals that don’t have a say in where they are driven. For God (SWT) wants you to be aware of everything in the political field, just as you are aware of all your religious obligations. And He holds you responsible for every political stand you take.

Israel’s Terrorism

Israel continues to face the Intifada in Palestine with bombing, assassinations, destroying gardens and ruining houses, while on the international level, it tries to portray the Palestinian liberation movement as a terrorist movement that kills innocent Jews. The Zionist media in the West does not subscribe to the fact that Palestine is an occupied country.

Furthermore, it talks about the Mujahideen, who perform martyr operations as people who believe in certain myths that are alien to the Western mind.

Sharon and Peres are playing complementary roles that make Peres talk about peace while Sharon talks about war, all in an effort to deceive the international public opinion.

On its part, the US continues to back Israel in all international forums, refusing to discuss the Israeli: aggression or the need for international protection in the security Council and threatening to veto any resolution that condemns Israel. It also threatens to boycott the conference on racial discrimination in Durban, South Africa, if it intends to discuss the racism of Zionism, and pressuring some of Arab and African states to be less critical of the Israeli practices. And although, it has been somewhat successful in this effort, with the help of several Arab states, certain Muslim, Arab and African states still insist on the need to discuss the Zionist racial practices.

America has also exerted pressure on the Arab official stands in the last Arab foreign ministers conference, that was held in Cairo, to the extent that the conference rejected the political economic boycott. It resorted to the familiar hollow rhetoric, promised certain financial aid and postponed the discussion of critical issues.

All this suggests that those officials are unaware of how grave the current situation in Palestine, where a whole nation is being systematically wiped out, is.

The Palestinians are looking forward for Arab and Muslim states to exert pressure on America and Israel to end the Zionist occupation and return the refuges to their homes and Jerusalem to its rightful owners, but to no avail.

The Intifada Continues

I believe that the Mujahideen in Palestine will continue their struggle until liberation, regardless of how great the scarifies are. For this is the only choice they have despite the psychological war that Sharon is waging in his media to convince them that they are destined to lose. This, the psychological war, is in itself an indication that he feels that the situation has become dangerous, especially as the element of time does not play in his favor. He has started to flounder, talking at times about a truce and at other times about security negotiations. But this playing with words will not get him out of his impasse.

Arab and Muslim Support

The Arab and Muslim peoples have to stand with the Palestinian freedom fighters, by means of an informational and political uprising that pressurizes the regimes and threatens the American interests.

America should know that its support to the enemy is not a kind of picnic, and that it will stand to loose both politically and economically.

The policy of reward and punishment is the only policy that works in changing the regional and international position. Protests and speeches will do no good and will yield no change.

Internal solidarity in Lebanon

In Lebanon, The political dialogue is taking the shape of inciting feelings and provoking reactions, which makes the whole situation quite unstable.

It is the responsibility of all parties who in adopting such methods are pushing the country to the verge of collapse, at a time the Israelis are once again trying to set foot in the country… The country is full of parties who are trying to engage in a political show-off with out any prior objective study.

We call upon all parries in Lebanon to review their political performance, in an effort to learn if their stands, whether political or security wise, helps to stabilize the state or stirs contusion and chaos, especially as Lebanon stands on the verge of economic and political collapse and that any political turmoil will affect the already aching economic situation.

The people’s grievances are enormous, yet the officials are the ones who are complaining. O politicians, stop yelling at one another and listen to the cries of the poor and needy. These are the real cries that ought to be heard before the temple falls on the heads of all of us.