from the book
"Inquiries About Shi’a Islam":
About Shi’a Islam"
by Imam Sayed Moustafa al-Qazwini
who listen to the Word and follow the best of it:
- those are the ones whom Allah has guided, and
- those are the ones with understanding.
Shi'a and Sunni schools of thought form the two wings of the
Islamic nation that allow it to fly and carry out its lofty
objectives. A great Muslim scholar once said, "Those
who attempt to cause division between the Shi'a and Sunni
are neither Shi'a nor Sunni." Written under this
premise, the book in hand should clarify some common questions
and inquiries about the philosophy and practice of Shi?a Islam.
The Shi'a and Sunni schools of thought differ primarily in
jurisprudence and have far more similarities than differences.
Every school of thought in Islam must be respected because
they all can lead people to salvation.
to the lack of clear information, the Shi'a Imamiyyah school
of thought has remained a mystery
to many Muslims. Numerous Muslims
are relieved to discover the truth about Shi'a Islam from
reliable sources. Nevertheless, the enemies of Islam have
found that the best way to slander Islam and disturb the peace
within the Muslim nation is to encourage division and sectarianism.
Thus, a myriad of negative and false rumors with no basis
in the authentic books of the Shi'a school of thought have
been spread. These rumors have two sources: animosity towards
Islam on the part of those who invent them, and ignorance
on the part of those who believe and propagate them.
This book is a call to unite
the Muslims since true unity stems from an understanding
of each other?s philosophies, not from keeping them secret.
While the majority of Shi?a scholars and even average individuals
keep many books belonging to other schools of thought in their
libraries, few other Muslims take the time to read the original
sources of Shi'a philosophy. I have endeavored in this book
to present the most controversial issues that distinguish
Shi'a Islam in a simple manner understandable by all people,
particularly our youth generation in the Western countries.
To make this book accessible to all readers regardless
of their school of thought, I have relied mainly on the Noble
Quran and traditions of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH & HF)
as reported in the books of narration (hadith).
have endeavored to be as accurate and scientific as possible
in presenting what has been recorded in the commonly accepted
Islamic sources. I share the aspiration of most Muslims to
see the Muslim nation heed to the call of the Noble Quran,
"Truly your nation is one nation, and I am your
Lord. Therefore, worship Me."
aim is to build a strong, cohesive, and cooperative Muslim
community around the globe, and for this nation to
be respected it must be united. Muslims must understand and
accept each other?s positions and principles. The best way
to disperse the misunderstandings and misconceptions between
the schools of thought is through constructive, sincere, and
objective dialogue. If the Noble Quran invites the adherents
of the three monotheistic religions (Judaism, Christianity,
and Islam) to share dialogue in a civilized manner
then certainly the schools of Islamic thought should also
come togeth er to discuss their differences based on the Noble
Quran and the authentic traditions of the Prophet Muhammad
(PBUH & HF). While none can deny that the schools of thought
have juristic (fiqh) differences, these differences should
not prevent adherents to these schools from acknowledging
and respecting each other?s opinions, for the leaders of these
schools of thought acquired their knowledge from one source
' the Prophet and ultimately Almighty Allah.
Allah created human beings with both an inner messenger and
an outer messenger. Both, the inner messenger, which is the
brain or the reasoning faculty, and the outer messenger, which
is the divine revelation, invite a person to exercise his
or her own intellectual abilities to search for the truth,
and not to take their customs, traditions, or family behavior
as sacred beliefs. This call is directed to the followers
of all the branches of Islam. All Muslims must research and
study their history and not be bound by the customs and traditions
of their ancestors which may not rest on solid ground, for
the Noble Quran condemns the blind following of ance stors
when it is said to them, "Come to what Allah has revealed
and to the Messenger.? They say, "enough for
us is that which we found our fathers following,"
even though their fathers had no knowledge whatsoever and
it is said to them, "Follow what Allah has sent
down." They say, "Nay! We shall
follow what we found our fathers following."
Would they do that even though their fathers did not understand
anything, nor were they guided?
ask all who read this book to read it objectively, with open-mindedness
and without sectarian biases, and I welcome any suggestions,
criticisms, or inquiries.
We ask Allah for guidance and enlightenment in our search
for the truth. May Allah open our hearts and minds to it,
and may He guide and extend His mercy upon us, for He is the
one who grants all things. "Our Lord! Let not
our hearts deviate from the truth after You have guided us,
and grant us mercy from You; truly, You are the Bestower."
ask Allah for His mercy, grace, and blessings in this endeavor,
and I ask the readers for their prayers that we all continue
to be humble servants of the religion of Allah on the Earth.
Noble Quran, 39:18
Noble Quran, 21:92
Noble Quran, 3:64
Noble Quran, 5:104
Noble Quran, 2:170
Noble Quran, 3:8
Tel: 27+21 7041580 / Fax: 27+21
/ E-mail: email@example.com
Ahlul Bait (as) Foundation of South Africa
P O Box 42, Ottery 7808, Cape Town South Africa