The First Sermon
the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
are a universal phenomenon
Today is the first day
of the month of Ramadan. If the jurists, both Sunnis and Shiites,
differ about the beginning of this month, this has to do with the
existence of two methods for determining it.
The first is the well
known one of depending on seeing by the naked eye; some jurists even
say that telescopes are not allowed.
There is also the issue
of being trustworthy. Twenty five people have claimed to have seen
it in Bahrain while about twenty said that they saw it in Saudi
Arabia and an additional number in Lebanon, yet some jurists were
not convinced and they proclaimed that Saturday is the first of the
As for my own
opinion which I have published over ten years ago, I consider that
the beginning of the month is part of a universal system Allah has
made. Just like the sunrise and the sunset happen at a certain time
whether people see them or they do not, the same thing is true for
the moon. The lunar month ends when the moon is on the same line
with the sun and the earth, and hence it can no longer been seen,
and the next month begins when it leaves this line. Such a system
existed before man (Surely the number of
months with Allah is twelve months in Allah's ordinance since the
day when He created the heavens and the earth).
It is known that
calculating the beginning and the end as well as all other
astronomical phenomena has become an exact science that enables the
scientists to determine the beginning of the months for the next 50
years and more. A case in point would be the eclipse of the sun and
moon that has long been determined before hand.
Thus, we believe that
seeing is just one of the ways of knowledge. Hence if the
astronomers tell us that the moon has begun to store light, then the
month has started. We have called on the Muslims scholars in the
Muslim world to adopt the scientific calculations and we are in
contact with the scientists, which allows us to determine the
beginning of the months of Ramadan and Shawal before hand although
some might not like it.
I am not here to
discuss which method is better, but I am saying that the second
method allows the Muslims to end their differences in determining
the end of the month.
It is Ironic that
people have assigned three different days for the beginning of the
last moth Shaaban. Such a multiplicity of views confuses people and
creates various troubles. In addition, it invigorates fanaticism
with people starting to accuse others of unbelief, which is a
symptom of backwardness.
We remain this week
with the Prophet's sermon in the last Friday of Shaaban. In this
sermon, the Messenger (p.) talked, as we said last week about the
spiritual, worshiping and social sides of fasting. In the rest of
the sermon, he is talking about human relations, asking to respect
the human side in the other and treat him with mercy. Whether he is
a member of your family, a neighbor or an employee, you ought not to
be tough on him or hurt his ego by giving him too many tasks.
Furthermore, being merciful with the others will be rewarded by
The Messenger says:
O’ People! Anybody who may cultivate good manners in this month
will walk over the ‘Sirat’ (Bridge) in ‘Qiyamat,’. This
sirat is the road people walk on to their way to where they will be
tried . Many people are not able to reach this place without falling
down. But if they wish to walk the road safely they have to improve
their manners in this month. The reward of good manners is the
avoidance of Allah's wrath. And this gives us an idea about the
spiritual value of good manners in Islam. It has even been said in
some traditions that a man whose worshipping is little but who has
good manners will reach the level of a fasting and praying
Thus Allah, the most
Exalted, wants man to base his relations with others on good manners
whether with his family or with those he contacts within his work.
The basis of these good manners were explained by the Prophet when
he linked good manners with faith and said: none of you will believe
until he loves for others what he loves for himself and hats for
others what he hates for himself.
The Prophet goes on to
say: Anybody who makes his servants (male or female) take light
work, in this month, Allah will make easy his accounting on the Day
of Judgment.. He is asking us to decrease the time of work, since
those who fast may not be able to work with the same pace as
Anybody who does not
tease others in this month, Allah will keep him safe from His wrath
in Qiyamat. Thus, in the month of Ramadan, we have to be in peace
with all people never saying or doing anything that would abuse
others… And you should start by your own family… There is no
reason at all to start yelling around, on the ground that you are
fasting. Before you beat others just because you are angry you have
to remember Allah's anger Who is always with the downtrodden whether
in this world or in the hereafter.
Anybody who treats well
his kinsmen, in this month, Allah will bestow His mercy on him in
Qiyamat, while anybody who maltreats his kinsmen in this month,
Allah will keep him away from His mercy, in Qiyamat. You have to
remain in contact with your relatives even with those who have
boycotted you. Imam As-Sadiq (a.s.) said to a man who asked him if
he should treat those who have boycotted him in the same way: If you
boycott them, Allah will boycott you. But if you treat him with
kindness, Allah will be kind on you.
"And who will
treat an orphan with kindness, Allah will be generous to him when he
meets him". Treating orphans with kindness has many forms
whether directly or indirectly, that is through the orphanages. Be
sure that you will be rewarded if you treat the orphan with kindness
and help in supporting him.
The Prophet (p.) then
turns to the worshiping side and says: (Whoever offers Sunnat
(Recommended) prayers in this month; Allah will give him a
certificate of freedom from Hell. Whosoever offers one ‘Wajib’
(obligatory) prayers in this month, for him the Angels will write
the rewards of 70 such prayers that were offered by him in any other
repeatedly ’Salaat-o-salaam’ on me, Allah will keep the scales
of his deeds heavy, when in Qiyamat the scales of others will be
tending towards lightness. Whosoever recites in this month only one
‘ayah’ (verse of the Holy Quran), he will be rewarded in a
manner as if he had recited the full Quran in the other months.
O’ People! The Gates
of Paradise remain opened in this month. Do invoke that the gates
may not be closed on you, while the Gates of Hell be closed. Do
invoke that these gates may never be opened."
The month of Ramadan is
the month of forgiveness and blessing, and those who are denied
Allah’s Mercy in this month are the miserable.
We have to take this
opportunity to strengthen our faith, commitment and humanitarianism,
for Allah has made the month of Ramadan, a month that makes us pious
in all the other months.
The Second Sermon
the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Atrocities in Palestine
What kind of army is
this Zionist army, whose soldiers would deliberately kill a
nine-year girl, and then an officer would come to empty twenty
bullets in her soft body.
Another soldier would
shoot directly at the UNERWA school killing a ten years old child
inside her classroom and wounding several other children.
This latest operation
in the on-going eradication process has led to the killing of 110
Palestinians in the last two weeks, the wounding of many others, and
the uprooting of those whose houses were demolished.
Some of the Israeli
officers themselves call for putting an end to this operation…
Yet, America considers this as an act of self-defense, just like its
own killing of civilians in Iraq ,under the pretense of fighting
As for the world, and
the Islamic and Arab World in particular, it is watching silently
these massacres without taking any action, as if it has grown used
to it, or may be it does not want to do anything that might anger
the US and Israel.
What is going on in
Palestine is a crime against humanity in which all silent or
encouraging states are taking part.
Security Council: A misunderstanding of terrorism
interesting that the UN Security Council has issued unanimously
Resolution 1566 that deals with cooperation in fighting terrorism.
But it did not elaborate on two issues that are vital in their
relevance to human rights, freedom and independence of nations.
These issues are:
First: The Resolution
did not define the concept of terrorism to differentiate between the
violence practiced by terrorists against civilians and the
Resistance that defends its country, freedom and people, as in
Palestine and other occupied countries. This had led the US and EU
to consider Hamas as a terrorist organization. Yet, every one knows
that Hamas and the other Palestinian militant organizations are a
reaction to the occupation. If it resorted to certain methods in its
resistance, it was only because it was the only means possible to
face the eradication of the Palestinian people that uses the most
advanced American weapons.
Secondly: State terror
practiced by America and Israel in occupied lands, as well as the
terror of dictatorships against their own peoples.
The problem is that the
Security Council being under American hegemony and the veto power is
no longer an institution that protects the rights of nations, but a
place where one goes to complain and cry.
in the midst of the American whirlpool.
Iraq is still living in
the midst of the American security impasse, with the occupation
force that kills children and civilians claiming that they are
targeting terrorist's hideouts. Thus, the occupation has become a
problem for the Iraqis and not a solution to them.
It was not able to stop
the assassination whether those committed for sectarian reasons or
personal ones… It was not also able to put an end to kidnapping…
It only cares now about protecting its own troops.
We are agonized by the
sufferings of the Iraqis and call on them to confront the situation
with awareness, unity and steadfastness, and depend only on
themselves… The idea that the occupation will liberate the country
and establish justice could not be more wrong. In fact, it is just
as wrong as the feeling that withdrawal of occupation troops will
turn the country into a front for civil war.
The Iraqis have to have
confidence in themselves, their history, their civilization and
their ability to run their own affairs…
Let the slogan of
Islamic and national unity be the slogan of the present and
It is the only way they
can save themselves... If America is talking about fighting
terrorism in Iraq, the head of the international inspectors has said
that the American occupation under the false pretense of weapons of
mass destruction is responsible for re-spreading terrorism in the
Denouncing the Mentality of accusing others of unbelief.
The recent attempt to
commit a brutal massacre in Pakistan that failed as a result of the
sacrifice of the guards guarding the mosque in Lahore leads us to
vehemently denounce the fanatic ignorant and backward mentality in
understanding Islam... We call on all Muslim clerics all over the
world to denounce it, for it has a negative impact on the Muslim
unity in the force of international arrogance, the enemy of Islam
and Muslims, and we call on the Pakistani government to put an end
to these actions.
At the same time, we
call for abstaining from any retaliation that will provoke a chain
reaction especially that Pakistan is being under an internal and
security attack both internally and externally.
A need for Salvation Plan.
In Lebanon, where many
officials are telling us that power shortage will only worsen and
that there is no solution even if all costumers pay their dues, the
political debate still concretes on the formation of the new
What the Lebanese want
is a government that could solve the economic crisis, a government
that could face the internal and external challenges, especially the
mounting Israeli and American threats against Lebanon and Syria. We
need to act quickly to save the country on the social and economic
levels, and not to go on with the endless debate about who will be
in the cabinet without a change in the mentality.
We might need to try a
cabinet of academics and experts who are known for their clean hands
We have tried
several politician governments that failed to save the country, why
don't we try a government of technocrats, taking into account how
deep is the crisis we have sunk in.