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Lectures >2002 Speeches > 03/05/2002

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

Ayatullah Al Ozma H.E. M. H. Fadlullah delivered the two Friday khotbas (at the Imamain Al-Hassanain Mosque, safar 20, 1423h, May 03, 2002 (Several prominent religious scholars, dignitaries and thousands of believers attended the Jumu’a prayer).

 

The Ashoura Meetings, should Turn into Forums of Increasing Awareness and education on Islam.


The First Speech

In the Name of God, The Compassionate the Merciful

Imam Hussein (a.s) A reformist and a Revolutionary Role Model

Today, we commemorate the anniversary of 40th day after the martyrdom of Imam Hussein (a.s), and the good company of his family and companions. Imam Hussein (a.s) does not live with us on certain occasions only. He is with us all the time, with our minds that opened up on the thought of righteousness, through his teachings and traditions… with our hearts that is still full of grief for what took place in the tragedy of Karbala… and he is with us to guide the way of our steps on the road of Karbala that reoccurs with every injustice.

 This is because the Imam is not only a revolutionary or a reformist, nor is he an Imam whom we believe in his Imamate like that of his father, brother and the other infallible Imams. The Imam is also a cause and a message that has to do with how to be committed to Islam in practice.

The slogans of Karbala are the slogans of life in its entirety, especially if we meet any deviation in the Islamic community. These slogans tell us about the Imam’s revolution against deviation in the Muslim community… If there is a deviation in the leadership, these slogans remind us that we have to reform it or change it with a righteous leadership… And if we face great challenges both inside and outside the Muslim community, the Imam (a.s) tells us that we should not take any humiliating stands but rather those of dignity and pride. All our movement should be based on Jihad.

The Imam’s Great Personality

The Imam’s personality has embodied all the elements of his grandfather (p), his father (a.s), his mother (a.s) and his brother (a.s) personalities. When we hear Muhammad (p.) saying: “Hussein is a part of me and I am a part of Hussein”, we understand that the Imam (a.s) is an extension of the prophet (p). It is not a matter of lineage only but it is the spiritual elements the Messenger (p) planted in his grandson (a.s), when he raised him in his early childhood, as well as the moral values, the Imam inspired from his grandfather’s actions.

Moreover, the messenger (p) says: I am a part of Hussein; how could the grandfather be a part of his grandson? The Messenger is not talking about who belongs to whom. What he is saying is that since Imam Hussein (a.s) caries the Messenger (p) in his mind and thought and follows him is all his moves, the Messenger lives inside the mind, the spirit and the heart of Hussein (a.s). Similarly the Imam learnt from living with his mother, the pure and infallible woman… the lady of all women …a part of the Messenger and the mother of her father… the woman who was spiritual and dedicated to God… This pure woman transmitted all these meaning with the milk she gave to her son, and the way she raised him and educated him.

 Living with Imam Ali (a.s), that great Islamic apex “whom Allah and the Messenger loved as much as he loved them”… This great personality that was filled with knowledge, spirituality, austerity, and courage, faithfulness to Allah and His Messenger, and readiness to fight for their cause, Imam Hussein (a.s) also took these elements from his father (a.s). That is why when he used to say that he was Al-Hussein bin Ali and that he has decided never to go back or withdraw, he was telling the people that Ali is a part of my personality. And since he never accepted backing away or withdrawing, thus, in Karbala, too, he decided not to withdraw despite all the enemy’s pressures...

Imam Hussein (a.s) also lived with Imam Al-Hassan (a.s)… This great Imam with his noble morals, who used to forgive those who hurt him, and they both became united as one in their manners, spirituality and dedication to Allah… The Messenger was pointing out to their manners and to the strength of their belief and dedication when he said: Al-Hassan and Hussein are the masters of the youth in Heaven”.

When his grandfather, father, mother, and brother passed away, he found that he became the sole responsible for the message that those great people carried, and that he has to dedicate himself for this message just as his father (a.s) did when he began his struggle for the cause of Allah and said to his lord: O God, you know that what we did was not a part of conquest for power, or for the trivial things of this world. It was to… reform you land and uphold your laws, so that your wronged servants will feel safe”.

The goal of Ali’s (a.s) movement was to stand with the oppressed against the oppressors, and to establish the right and defeat falsehood.

 Establish the right and defeat falsehood.

This was the stand of Imam Al-Hussein (a.s) when he stood up to say: “I did not rise as a frolic or as an arrogant who despises grace, nor did I rise to corrupt or to be unjust… I rose to seek reform for my grandfather’s the Messenger, nation... I want to enjoin good and forbid evil”. I did not rise to kill any one in particular, but I rose for the sake of the Message, to restore it to its place in the minds and hearts of people. “Accepting me by accepting the right means accepting God, but if I am opposed I will wait patiently until Allah judges between me and them. He is the best of Judges”.

Thus, the call of Imam Hussein (a.s) ought to stay with us... We should all rise, whenever we find any corruption whether in the community or in the leadership to seek reform of the nation of the Messenger... This is the responsibility of all of us, and this is the slogan of all Messengers. The Glorious Quran tells that prophet Shuaib said: “I desire not save reform so far as I am able”.11:88.

Let us all institute reform as a thought, a spirit and a movement in all aspects of our lives... This is how we become faithful to the Imam’s message.

Years passed, and we are now facing the same situation. Thus, we have to shoulder the same responsibility. We should not back away from seeking reform under the influence of any pressure.

 The Imam (a.s) refused to give any legitimacy to the rule of Yazid right from the beginning, and he could not have changed his position towards the end. That is why he said his immortal words that ensured that he would not accept anything like a slave in humiliation and submissiveness. He added that if he had to choose between death and humiliation or disgrace he would certainly not choose the latter.

 Living Ashoura is standing against oppression

Such as stand should fill our hearts and minds each time we face the oppressors and the arrogant powers, whether in the Muslim countries or in the whole world. It is not living in a tragedy of tears and hitting ourselves with swords or chains… for swords should be raised against the enemy as we were taught by the Imam (a.s).

Thus, when we meet in Ashoura, we ought to change these meetings into a forum for Islam, education and revolution… a place where we elevate and enhance the awareness of the people. We should not turn it into a place where we cry in reaction to certain stories although some of them might be untrue.

We should leave all the outdated bad habits that make people around the world make fun of us, like what is happening a lot these days whether in Lebanon, Syria, Iran or Iraq. We have to join hands to keep the cause of Imam Hussein (a.s) glittering and illuminating. We have to unite under the banner of the Imam (a.s) to plan our moves as he planned his, and to be, as Allah told us” {Lo! Allah loves those who battle for his cause in ranks, as if they were a solid structure}61:4

If we want to pay a visit to the Imam, to stand by his grave or to appeal to him, we have to restore in ourselves his revolution, his personality and his spirituality. The visit is not merely words we utter, but a thought we re-affirm our commitment to, and an emotion that refills our hearts… a line that guides us in all our lives. We have to re-pledge our loyalty to the Imam (a.s)… To rise as he did so that he will tell us through history as he told his family and companions that “we were faithful to the cause of Allah(swt)”.

 Good Friday

Today is Good Friday according the Greek Orthodox Church. And although, we do not believe that Christ (a.s) was killed or crucified, he nevertheless was tortured and had to endure severe hardships for the sake of the Message. He was prosecuted like Imam Hussein (a.s) was, and asked the same question to his people: {But when Jesus became conscious of their disbelief, he cried: Who will be my helpers in the cause of Allah? The disciples said: We will be Allah’s helpers. We believe in Allah, and bear witness that we have surrendered (unto Him)}3:52.

The same thing happened with the Imam (a.s) when he felt that he was being betrayed by a lot of people who went back on their words. He asked: “Who would support us” and his true supporters rushed to ensure him: “We are with you, son of the Messenger”

The people are the same in both cases, the Message is the same, and Allah (swt) is the same.

Thus, when we remember Christ’s (a.s) pains and sufferings, just as we remember that of Hussein (a.s) and his supports, we say to the people of the Book :{ Say: O people of the Scripture! Come to an agreement between us and you: that we shall worship none but Allah, and that we shall ascribe no partner unto Him, and that none of us shall take others for lords beside Allah}3:64.

We also say to them: If we differ with you about Christ whom you consider the incarnation of God, while we do not, and if we differ over the meaning of the oneness of Allah (swt), we do not differ on moral and spiritual values, nor do we differ about all the teachings that Jesus (a.s) preached. For we believe in all holy books.

{We believe in what was revealed to us and what was revealed to you and our god and your god is but one}46:29. So let us join hands against the unbelievers, and let us stand against the oppressors instead of fighting and hating one another, especially that we live in a multi-confessional country whose confessions complement each other. It is a country that needs additional cooperation to let those who live in it be free and seek to work together for the sake of their common welfare.

 

The Second Speech

In the Name of God, The Compassionate, the Merciful

 

Labor Day: the Misery of the poor

 Two days ago- the world celebrated labor’s day, at a time the workers face a lot of problems such as economic crisis, unemployment and political crisis that lead to hindering the economic development in several countries.

On this occasion, we ought to remember the Palestinian workers who suffered from all kinds of problems and tragedies (massacres, homelessness, deprivation and hunger). Nevertheless, they stood up and faced them despite the Arab and international silence that neglected all human rights, and began to practice political hypocrisy under the influence of the American arrogance that coordinated, with “Israel”, the war against the Palestinians, and gave the Zionist Army and government the green light to execute their plot, as well as all the time needed.

 The Americans support terror

At the same time, America pretended to be calling the enemy to withdraw without delay, while telling it to get on with its occupation. It showed political appreciation for Sharon the butcher, calling him a man of “peace” and inviting him with all due respect to visit the United States to plan to the next phase of the war against what it calls “Palestinian terror” that will be conducted in a new way. It also pressurized the Security Council and the Secretary General to abstain from condemning Israel for refusing to receive the “fact-finding committee” in the massacre of Jenin.

 America has become the leading actor in the “play” of providing political security to the occupation. It has turned a deaf ear to any Arab call for help, and provided facing – saving arrangements to some of the Arabs by lifting the siege on the Palestinian President. But it did not forget to tell him to earn the respect of the American President by accepting his demands. In America’s view, Arafat has not yet earned Bush’s respect, for he has not done enough killing and arresting of the Mujahideen, as if jailing of the executors of the Israeli minister in a Palestinian-American-British jail is not enough...

The Arabs have hailed this accomplishment, but they did not pay attention to the satanic devious American plan to break the Arabs’ unity and create differences even among the ranks of the American allies.

 This led the Egyptian president to raise his voice and say: The campaign against the so-called terror has taken a new direction that aims at enabling Israel to achieve political gains at the expense of Arab and Muslim countries, as well as trying to crash and end the legitimate Palestinian resistance of the Israeli occupation. The Israeli military operations aim at terrorizing the Palestinian people and crashing the resistance against occupation. The Palestinian resistance will not end as long as there is an occupation.

We hope that this stand will be consistent in planning for the future, which the Israelis want to play with. They want to undermine the popular militant unity of the Palestinians by introducing the old\new demand from the Palestinian Authority to fight “terrorism”. That is why they want it to crash the Intifada and put the Mujahideen in jail, although there is nothing clear regarding the future of Palestine. They want to rid the Palestinians of their strength so that they would accept all the humiliating terms they are offered…

Be ware of new plots

The Palestinian people, all the Intifada factions and the leadership of the Palestinian Authority should study well this new Zionist-American strategy that aims at deceiving the Arab officials, who have assured America that they will not resort to economic boycott or the use of oil as a weapon, and who continue to make concessions that are uncalled for.

We are in a very dangerous stage for the enemy wants to yield the fruits of its barbarian war that aims at imposing unconditional surrender upon the Palestinians that entails accepting all their humiliating terms… America has been trying, and still is, to build an international alliance that includes the UN, the EU and Russia to put the Israeli plan, into practice in Palestine, having seen that Europe has started to make a stand against the Israeli massacres. We have to keep our eyes open, monitor all this and be always vigilant and cautious to discover any vicious schemes.

Boycotting needs to be widened

In this atmosphere, the popular boycott for Israeli and American products has to continue and broaden, having achieved some positive results, especially that the Boycott Office of the Arab League did not take any significant decisions, in its last meeting in Damascus. It only urged the Arab states to activate the boycott against “Israel”, since many Arab countries have not take any step in this direction.

On another level we heard the American President’s national advisor talking about why  Iran is included in the “axis of evil”, and justifying this by claiming that Iran’s international policy supports world and middle Eastern ”terror”… In fact, Iran is a victim of America and international terror since a multi-phased war is waged on it. Moreover, Iran supports the national liberation movements that America considers as terrorists, for America considers all those who oppose its policies or that of the Israelis to be terrorists. We do not know why America does not talk about the weapons of mass destruction, including the Israeli nuclear weapons. If America believes that Israel is under a threat, Iran too is also under threat, although it has declared that it does not plan to produce nuclear weapons.

 Additional Burdens on the poor in Lebanon

In Lebanon, we would like all the officials to reconcile to safeguard the stability of the country and to fight corruption and waste.

They should also start to set out plans for the economic situation that is on the verge of catastrophe, especially with the news that the state could no longer finance any vital project, but only basic salaries and interests.

There are many other vital issues that ought to be solved like the diesel engines that run cars which began to affect the environment.  The state and all those concerned should find a solution, for this problem, that does not hurt the car owners. Similarly the raise of the fees of the Lebanese university is a new burden; the poor cannot endure in such a bad economic situation.

We call upon the government not to be a sword that is always raised over the heads of the poor. But rather a merciful welfare state that takes care of the interests of all its citizens.