Result of Jealousy

When a man decides to tread the way of beasts, he disregards reason and Shariah and hurts others with his actions, words and deeds. Troubling people becomes his prime quality. He becomes involved in pride and arrogance. Ridiculing others becomes his habit. The desire to spread mischief and oppression takes root in him. He becomes addicted to foul language, enmity and revenge. A person possessing animal qualities will behave like animals in the Hereafter also. It is mentioned from the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.s.) that he said, “The inmates of Hell shall bark at each other like dogs.” And just like stray dogs are chased away they shall be also chased in the same manner. The Almighty Allah shall show them in this very form. He shall say: Go away into it and speak not to Me.[125]

[Result of Jealousy]

A person who begins to assume the form of Satans, that is he turns away from the obedience of Allah and His worship. He denies Allah and the Hereafter. He makes pride, arrogance, injustice and oppression a part of his life. He indulges in cheating, deceit and makes betraying trust a part of his character. He is considered as a member of the satanic clan. Like the Satans he thinks of nothing but mischief. So he enters into the army of Satans that resemble human beings. After a time this person is counted as one of the Satans, who are in the form of jinns. The Holy Quran mentions the two groups of these Satans, The Satans from among men and jinn, some of them suggesting to others varnished falsehood to deceive (them).[126] And

O assembly of jinn! You took away a great part of mankind.[127]

[Humans have a higher status than Angels]

Humans have a higher status than Angels but only when they tread the path of humanity. That is they subject their carnal desires, anger and other qualities to Shariah and reason. They becomes perfect and qualities like chastity, contentment, piety, shame, valor, charity, magnanimity and forgiveness are nurtured in them.

Oppressing the people or cheating them is also a way of the Satan. While the way of man is worship of Allah, Obedience, recognition, truthfulness, sincerity etc. One who walks the path of humanity is imbued with qualities like knowledge, wisdom, patience and thankfulness, submission and satisfaction, love and friendship, support and well-wishing etc. Till, he reaches the pinnacle of perfection and exceeds the angels. Rather angels are ready to serve him.

Once again I will soar higher than the Angel.

Then I shall become that which cannot be imagined.[128]

Mulla Sadi Shirazi says, “The physical body can be called human only if it has signs of humanity.”

It is not that the sign of humanity is a beautiful dress.

If man is man due to eyes, tongue, ears and nose then what would be the difference between humanity and the designs on the wall?

This eating, drinking, sleeping, anger and animal desires are all the qualities of animals much less than humans. Become a real human being. Otherwise become a bird that utters only the words spoken by men.

You have seen the bird fly high in the air. Just try to break the fetters of desire. Then you shall realize the flight of humanity.

Why do you remain a prisoner to a demon? Aren’t you human? See! Even the Angels cannot reach the status of man.

If the beast in you is destroyed from your nature. You shall live your whole life as a man.

O Man! You reach to a stage that apart from God no one sees.

See what is the lofty position of humanity.[129]

[Truth and Reality]

So we realize that hypocrisy is a satanic way and truth and belief is the human way. Man can spend his life in the human way. He can also achieve an exalted status in the Hereafter. He shall live forever in joy and happiness. But what greater mistake man can commit when standing on the crossroads he takes a wrong decision and leaves such a beautiful way. On the other hand he treads the path of Satan and consequently bears untold difficulties that waylay this path. Even after death he is tied up in the chains and collars of fire, while the severe Angels threaten him. What defect has man seen in a life of truth and piety that he left it? And instead of this way he chose the path of hypocrisy? Such a person is really as mentioned in Quran:

He loses this world as well as the hereafter.[130]

[Giving up Hypocrisy]

It must also be emphasized that hypocrisy has many roots and it is of many subtle kinds that are not usually noticed. We must assure that not a single type of it remains. One who intends to be absolutely pure from hypocrisy and become the partisan of truth should study the words and characters of the Most Truthful People (Siddiqeen). The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.s.) heads the list of ‘Siddiqeen’. We should make their lives as our ideals. We should walk in their footsteps. We should note that these personages were aloof from hypocritical behavior. They did not announce anything unless they had made firm decision to do it. So that there may not be contradiction between their heart and their tongue. 

Here we shall be content to mention a tradition as an example:

[Some customs that are against Reality]

A follower of Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) came to him while Ismail, the Imam’s son was also present. He greeted the Imam and sat near him. When Imam arose and left for his house this man also followed till they reached the door of Imam’s house. Imam told him to wait outside and he went in with his son. Ismail asked, “O Father! Why did you not just for courtesy sake invite him inside?” Imam replied, “I did not want him to come inside.” “Even if you have invited he would not have entered.” Imam Sadiq (a.s.) said, “My son! I dislike that Allah should consider me a hypocrite.”[131] 

So I will not say anything regarding which I have no firm intention. This is an example of truthful people. Thus one who intends to step into the world of truthfulness and to refrain from even the roots of hypocrisy, he should have complete control over himself. He should not say anything he is not serious about. Thus it is only permitted during dissimulation as we have explained in detail in the preceding pages.

[Third Disease: Polytheism] 

One of the diseases of the heart that deviate man from the straight path is ‘Shirk’ or Polytheism. That is to consider someone or something a partner to Allah, the Creator of the Universe. It is an unpardonable sin. How severe is it? And how many categories of it are there? All of it is discussed in the first volume of our book Greater Sins. Here we shall only emphasize its harmful effects on the soul. This disease brings every kind of depravity. The Holy Quran has a number of verses that mention polytheism. And whoever associates (others) with Allah, it is as though he had fallen from on high, then the birds snatch him away or the wind carries him off to a far-distant place.[132]

[From the height of Monotheism to the depravity of Polytheism]

Thus a person who becomes a polytheist has actually fallen from the great status of humanity. Monotheism is a strong fort of Allah. One who associates anyone or anything with Allah falls out of this fort. The Satan kidnaps him and deceives him. He commits the mistake of allowing himself to be deceived by the Satan. In this way he becomes distant from divine mercy. The Satan makes him involved in illegal desires and wrong wants. In brief, one who falls from the lofty status of Monotheism to the debased position of polytheism, either the man-eating bird of carnal desires devours him or he is blown away into the valley of deviation by the wind of satanic instigations. 

[The Demand of Humanity – Monotheism]

Man is the superior-most creature. He has the loftiest position among the creations of Allah. However, this position is bestowed on him only if he remains attached the Almighty. He achieves it only when he submits to the obedience of Allah. He considers everything that he has as Allah’s property. He sees himself debased and degraded before the might of Allah. He looks upon all creatures as partners in the service of Allah. He believes that Allah is the giver of all bounties to him as well to others. According to him Allah is the guardian of all the creatures. He must not consider any creature to be instrumental in influencing anyone’s fate. He should consider all the creatures as mediums and channels. He may approach them for being mediums but he must only consider them as such. He must have absolute regard only for Allah. For example, during an illness he can visit a doctor and if necessary take medicine. However, he should know that only Allah bestows a cure. If Allah had not given cure in the hands of the doctor or effect in the medicine, he would never have been cured. If Allah had not permitted, the doctor would not have succeeded in diagnosing the disease.

Thus he should consider himself and all other creatures to be depending and in need of Allah in all aspects of their life. He should have firm belief that it is Allah Who has brought us into this world and it is He alone Who will take us away. Allah is one Who bestows in excess and sometimes due to hidden wisdom He constrains the bounties. Allah is the one to protect us in the world and He alone can give us salvation in the Hereafter. Allah is his Lord as well as of the others. Thus he should say with firm conviction: I witness that there is no god except Allah. The One Who has no partner. The kingdom is for Him and the Praise is for Him.

This is the great position of humanity. That he should only look upon Allah and worship Him alone. If man bows down before a creature of Allah, considers himself needy before him, pleads with him and degrades himself before him, he debases himself from the lofty position of humanity. Bowing down before living and non-living objects, before animals and angels is a kind of abasement. No one is higher than Allah. If man considers something other than Allah as god it means that he has humiliated himself before it instead of Allah. The honor of humanity lies in that he should consider himself only in need of Allah. No creature can completely dissociate from Allah.

[Cannot ever create a Mosquito]

The Almighty Allah says, O people! A parable is set forth, therefore listen to it: surely those whom you call upon besides Allah cannot create a fly, though they should all gather for it, and should the fly snatch away anything from them, they could not take it back from it; weak are the invoker and the invoked.[133] Thus, is it correct to worship such people, such things and idols? Does it behoove humanity that man should plead before such deities?

Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (a.s.) says, “The infidels of Quraish used to anoint the idols they had hung on the four sides of the Ka’ba with fragrance of musk and amber. Allah appointed four-winged green flies on these idols. These flies used to snatch the musk and amber and fly away and feed on it.” We have taken the above tradition from Tafsir of Safi that quotes from Usul al-Kafi.

[Types of False Deities]

All those things that deterred man from the worship of One God and all those things that he came to regard as deities are either inorganic, or organic like the plants, the animals, man, jinns and angels etc. So we shall refer to them in brief only because greater details will prolong the discussion. Inanimate objects can be heavenly bodies like the moon and the stars or the idols. People usually made idols of wood or stone. They used to embellish them with gold, silver and precious stones and make them in different shapes. In the same way they used to make statues of the stars and install them in their worship-houses. Then these ignorant people used to worship these idols their own hands had wrought. They used to rely on them and invocate them.

Prophet Ibrahim (a.s.) told the idol-worshippers of his nation:

What! Do you worship what you hew out? And Allah has created you and what you make.[134] How can reason justify this action that man is bowing down before something that he has himself made? It is Allah Who has created all the material that you use for making the idols. The verses that are revealed in denouncement of idol-worship are numerous.

[Worship of the most lowly things]

It is obvious that the position of man is higher than that of animals. In the same way the position of animals is higher than inanimate objects. Thus if man begins to worship something that can neither move nor think, which does not even have a proper shape or body, and considers himself subservient to inanimate objects, it shall be definitely an illogical thing to do. In this way man has degraded himself to become lowlier than inanimate objects.

[Excuses for Idol Worship]

Some idol worshippers justify their wrong practice saying, “We know that these idols are not our creator and sustainer. But since it is not possible to contact God without a medium, we are compelled to make them in the form of God or proximate angels and worship them. So that we can gain proximity to the Creator of the Universe. Respecting the image of a person signifies respecting this person himself.” This is just like repeating the words of the Holy Quran: We do not serve them save that they make us nearer to Allah.[135]

[Allah is Near but He has no body!]

This is a wrong notion of the idol-worshippers. Everyone knows that no one is more proximate than Allah? Reason and nature desire that every creature should ever be engaged in struggle to reach Him. It is the demand of the Might of the Creator that in achieving proximity to the creatures nothing should come in between. The traditions of the Prophets also confirm this. However, the Almighty Allah does not possess a shape. He neither has a form or a face. Rather, He is the Creator of bodies. He Himself does not have a body. Thus it is not correct to make an image of God. It is also not correct to make the images of angels and men considering them to be proximate to Allah. No man has ever seen an angel in actual form. Thus whatever image is created is imaginative and false. As far as the stars and idols are concerned, Satan deviates men through them. By making them engrossed in their worship the Satan keeps them away from the worship of Allah. Another point is that idol-makers can neither prove their action through reason nor do they have any divine command as proof.

You only worship idols besides Allah and you create a lie.[136]

[Worship of the Four Elements]

Some people worship the four elements, viz. fire, water, earth and air. Satan has deviated them towards this. Some people worship only fire. They consider it to be eternal. They say: The greatest creature of Allah is the fire. So we must worship it. Some people worship air and consider it to be the only real entity. They do not think it to be different from the existence of God. Others think earth (dust) is the only God. Some others worship the sea. The baselessness and falsity of such beliefs is obvious. 

[Sun, Moon and the Stars]

Some people have deviated towards the Sun, the Moon and the Stars. The worshippers of the sun think that it is an angel. “It is a great, intelligent and powerful angel. It is the chief of all angels. It is the king of the heaven and the earth.” Certain people exceed this and say: “Sun is the absolute truth and the actual God. It has created everything. We can see it with our eyes while we only hear the name of other non-material things. Man should worship only that which he can see. We should not worship on hearsay.”

Some other people worship the moon. They consider it to be a great and a powerful angel, while Zoroastrians also revere other celestial bodies like Venus, Saturn and Mars etc. They fix their images in their worship houses and get them engraved in their homes and worship them.

[From the aspect of creation, Earth is like the Moon and Stars]

Today man has stepped on the moon. It has been proved beyond doubt that stars and planets resemble this Earth. Their status is no higher than that of the Earth. If man pleads to them and prostrates before them it is nothing but his own ignorance.

[False beliefs]

Yes! Distancing themselves from the religion of Islam and the Holy Quran has involved them in such false beliefs. So much so, that there are some people in India who worship the male sexual organ. Some consider the cow to be holy. They say that your prayer shall be valid only if you wash your face with cow urine. When they see a cow urinating they rush to it and cup their hands to fill them with urine. After this they smear their faces with it and perform prayers. There is also a sect of Magians who say: “Angels are the daughters of God. They influence the course of happenings. The Almighty also has a wife from the jinn family.”

Another sect worships the jinns.

[Worship of Trees and Division of Good and Evil]

A date palm was considered sacred in the area of Najran. Weapons, clothes and dresses were kept on it as offerings. It is written in Anisul Aalaam that, “There is a tree besides the river Ganges in India, whose leaves move continuously in a particular fashion. They move sixty times in a minute. The polytheists of India consider this river and this tree sacred.” These are a religious group called ‘Sanawiya’. According to them there are two creators of this world. All that is good is created by Yazdan, who is wise and kind. The second Creator is Ahriman (Satan). He is powerless and he has created all the evil.

[The Nature of Man says that God is One]

Scholars say that except for the atheists and materialists, followers of all other religions believe in the Unity and Oneness of God. Even if they indulge in polytheism they consider other gods to be smaller than the Almighty and they consider Allah as the greatest. Or they say that the smaller gods give some bounties and answer invocations. But they consider that the creator and the Lord of all is one because human nature cannot, but believe in the Oneness of God.

[Polytheism in Actions]

In other words it can be said that everyone is unanimous on the Being and qualities of Almighty God. They all say that the eternal being of the Almighty is one. But some people commit polytheism in actions of God. They say that all that is done by providence has the hand of some others besides God. They consider these other factors worthy of obedience besides the Almighty. The obedience should be for Allah, alone. With regard to worship also they perform such acts that are worthy only for the Almighty.

[Idol-worship is open Polytheism]

So far we have discussed about the idol-worshippers whose polytheism is obvious. Even the Holy Quran applies to them both the terms: Polytheist and Idol-worshippers. The People of the Book (Ahle Kitab) are in a different kind of polytheism. It can just be said that they have committed polytheism. There is a difference between doing polytheism and being polytheists themselves. For example, in spite of Hajj becoming incumbent on him if someone does not perform it, it is said that he has committed infidelity. But we can’t say that he has become an infidel. Thus polytheists are those whose polytheism is obvious. And obvious polytheism means that a person accepts smaller gods and worships them.

[The Polytheism of Ahle Kitab is Hidden Polytheism]

The polytheism of Ahle Kitab is a hidden or concealed polytheism. Ahle Kitab includes the Jews and Christians. Some scholars say that Magians are also included in it. Certain traditions also support the view that Magians had a prophet and a heavenly book but now that book has been taken away from them. 

The polytheism of the Ahle Kitab is due to various reasons: For example the Jews say, “Uzair is the son of God.” Uzair is the same person whom the Jews call Ozra in Hebrew. He was the one to lay the new foundation of Jewish faith. Nebuchannezer the king of Babel had conquered the cities and territories of the Jews, razed their synagogues and burnt their holy books. After this Uzair wrote a new book by the name of Torah. 

Nebuchannezer had killed all the male Jews. The women, children and some old men were sent to Babel. They remained in Babel for nearly a hundred years. Finally, Koresh the king of Persia invaded Babel and conquered it. Then Uzair came to Koresh and lobbied for the homeless Jews. Koresh had respect for Uzair. He agreed to the request of Uzair that Jews be permitted to return to their homeland. He also gave the permission to rewrite the Torah, because not a single copy of Torah had survived. Despite this fact, Uzair wrote a book called Torah in 457 B.C. then he distributed it among the Jews under the same title of Torah.

However, after three hundred years or so, in 161 B.C. the ruler of Sham (Syria) in Antioch again conquered the Jewish territories. As a result of this even the Torah written by Uzair was destroyed. The soldiers of Antioch used to raid homes and wherever a copy of Torah was found, it was burnt to ashes.

The Jews revere Uzair because he had once again settled them in Palestine. That is why they call him ‘Son of God’. This is just like Christians who refer to Prophet Isa (a.s.) as the “Son of God,” because they found in him a glimpse of divine qualities. They consider him to be from God or the Son of God. They think that since he is so close to God, he must be the Son of God. Actually this extreme belief of the Jews and Christians has no firm basis.

And the Jews say: Uzair is the son of Allah; and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah; these are the words of their mouths.[137] Please refer to Surah Tawbah, verses 30-32 for this topic.

The Christians believe in ‘Unity in trinity’. While they say that the Creator of the Universe is one they also reiterate that the creator consists of three parts. One part is concerned with creation. The second part is the ‘son of God’ (Isa). He is concerned with the mission of speaking to the people as a representative of God. And the third part is the Holy Spirit (Jibraeel). He is considered with the section of life. These three different parts of God are know as “Aqaneem” in their terminology and one of them implies a particular quality without which the personage has no existence.

This was in brief the belief of trinity. However when we study this subject in detail in different books we find that there are more than seventy points regarding which there exist controversies. That is justifications for trinity contradict each other. So much so that some Christian writers state that, “The belief of trinity is not logical, but we must accept it without any investigation.” Please refer to the book Anisul Aalaam for more details. Also, the Tafsir al-Mizan has discussed this topic under the exegesis of the 30th Verse of Surah Aale Imran.

The idol-worshippers of India and the Buddhist also believe in trinity. Rather, scholars say that Christians have borrowed the idea of trinity from the idol-worshippers.

Allamah Tabatabai quotes from Khurafat-e-Taurat in his Tafsir al-Mizan: “When we undertake a careful study of India we find that their most ancient and common deities are the trinity. That is one God has three parts. According to them there are three parts of the Godhead: Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. They believe that the three of them collectively make up the Godhead. According to them Brahma is the Creator, Vishnu is the preserver and Shiva, the destroyer.

[Extremists and believers in ‘delegation’ (Tafweez) are also Polytheists] 

The ‘Ghulat’ (extremist) sect of the Muslims also commits hidden polytheism. The followers of this sect say that Ali Ibne Abi Talib (a.s.) is the creator, sustainer and the administrator of the universe. Tafweez means that these people believe in delegation. According to them Ali (a.s.) and the other Imams have been delegated the tasks of creating and sustaining the world and they have complete freedom to do as they like. Obviously they consider Ali (a.s.) a partner of Allah in actions that are only in the hands of Allah.