Maxims of Imam Reza (A.S.)Tuhaf al-Uqoul


611.jpgImam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:

 

The character of faith is achieved only when the believer enjoys three qualities from his Lord, the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family), and the leader –the Imam- (peace be upon him). The quality that he should learn from his Lord is the concealment of secrets, the quality that he should learn from the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) is the courteous behavior, and the quality that he should learn from the leader (peace be upon him) is steadfastness against poverty and distress.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
It is obligatory upon the wealthy to improve the standard of living of his family.

Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Praying and fasting is not the true worship. The true worship is the pondering over God.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Cleanness is one of the prophets’ customs.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Perfuming, hairstyling, and polygamy—these three matters are within the customs of the apostles of God.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The honest has not betrayed you, but you have trusted the betrayal.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
When God wants to do an action, He seizes the minds of the servants and does that action perfectly. Then, He gives them their minds back. Therefore, they wonder how and when such an action occurred.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Silence is one of the doors of wisdom. It yields amicability and leads to every goodness.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Every unnecessary act requires surplusage.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The elder brother is as same as the father.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said when he was asked about the lowly ones:
The lowly are those who possess things that engage them from God.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) used to dust the letters and say:This is unproblematic. When he wanted to list his affairs for memorization, he (peace be upon him) used to begin with ‘In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. I will remember, inshallah.’

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
When you want to mention a present person, you should use his surname, but when you refer to an absent person, you should use his name.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The friend of any individual is his mind and his enemy is his ignorance.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Endearment to people is half of intelligence.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
God surely hates gossips, squandering, and asking -for financial help- from the enemies.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
A Muslim’s mind is imperfect before he enjoys ten characters—good is expected from him, evil is far away from him, he regards others’ little good deed as great favor and regards his great favor as little, he is not disturbed by people who ask him to settle their needs, he does not feel tired of seeking knowledge all his lifetime, he prefers poverty for God’s sake to richness, prefers humility with God to honor with His enemies, and prefers obscurity to fame. The tenth character! Do you know what is it?
They asked, ‘What is it?’
It is to regard anyone as better and more pious than him. He classifies people into two kinds; either better and more pious than him or eviler and lowlier than him. If he meets one of those who are eviler and lowlier than him, he wishes the good of that man might be hidden, and this will be better for him, while his own evil is apparent, and this will be worse for him. When he meets one of those who are better and more pious than him, he behaves modestly so that he may join him. If he does so, his glory will be lofty, good deeds will be acceptable, and his reputation will be good. Besides, he will be the master of people.
As a man asked him about the exegesis of God’s saying: “God is Sufficient for the needs of whoever trusts in Him,” Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Trusting in God is of various grades, one of which is to trust in whatever He does to you totally. You should satisfy yourself with whatever occurs to you, since you believe that God will not fail to bestow upon you with His good and custody and believe that everything is subject to His estimation; therefore, you should trust in Him by charging with Him whatever befalls you. Another grade of trusting in God is to believe in the unseen acts of God that you cannot comprehend, entrust their comprehension to Him as well as His custodians on them, and rely on him in such acts as well as others.
Ahmed bin Najm asked Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) about the self-conceit that invalidates one’s actions. The Imam answered:
Self-conceit is of various grades, one of which is that when the evil deeds seem to be attractive and virtuous; hence, the doer becomes self-conceited because he thinks he is doing well. Another grade of self-conceit is to believe that God owes you a great deal because you believed in Him. In fact, you owe God a great deal because He guided you to believe in Him.
Al-Fadhl related: I told Abul-Hasan Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) that Younus bin Abdurrahman claimed that knowledge is an acquired thing. The Imam (peace be upon him) answered:
No, it is not. This is inaccurate. God gives knowledge (or faith) to whomever He wishes. He fixes it with a group and deposits with others. God will never seize it from those with whom it is fixed, but he will seize it from those with whom it is deposited.
Safwan bin Yahya said: I asked Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) whether knowledge is given to the servants out of efforts that they themselves exert. He answered negatively. I also whether they will receive any reward due to their knowledge. The Imam (peace be upon him) answered:
God has given them knowledge out of His grace and will reward them for it out of his grace, too.
Al-Fudhail bin Yasar said: I asked Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) whether the acts of the servants (of God) are created or not. He answered:
By God, the acts are created (the planning for the acts, not their bringing into being).
The Imam (peace be upon him) then added:
Faith precedes Islam in one degree and God-fearing precedes faith in one degree. Conviction is the ever-best thing that has been given to sons of Adam –human beings-.
In his indication to the best servants, Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The best servants (of God) are those who feel delighted whenever they do a good deed, seek God’s forgiveness whenever they commit an evildoing, thank God whenever they obtain something, behave steadfastly whenever a misfortune befalls them, and pardon whenever they are enraged.
As he was asked about the limit of trusting in God, Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) answered:
The limit of trusting in God in to fear nobody except Him.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The banquet of wedding ceremony is a recommendable tradition.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Faith stands on four supports—trusting in God, satisfaction with His acts, submission to His commandments, and entrusting Him with all the affairs. The virtuous servant said (as the Quran relates):
I entrust God with my affairs. God is Well Aware of His servants. God protected him against their evil plans.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Regard your relatives even by (providing them) a mouthful of water. The best form of regarding your relatives is to save them from your evil. God says:
Do not make your charities fruitless by reproachfully reminding the recipient of your favor or making them feel insulted.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Forbearance and knowledge are within the signs of understanding. Silence is one of the doors of wisdom. It yields amicability and leads to every goodness.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The reward of the one who seeks earnings just for meeting the needs of his dependants is greater than the reward of the fighter for God’s sake.
Someone said to Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him): “How is your morning?” He answered:
I begin my day with a descending lifetime and recorded deeds. Death is inevitable for us, Hell is behind us, and we do not know what will happen to us.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
You should not have any hope, whether for a worldly or a religious affair, in those who lack five characters: original lineage, generous quality, sedate manner, noble personality, and God-fearing.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
Victory is always the confederate of the more forgiving party.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The generous call people’s invitations to meals so that they will call his invitations, while the stingy does not call their invitations so as to save himself from inviting them.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
We, the Prophet’s family, consider our promises as debts that we must defray. This is the way of the Messenger of God (peace be upon him and his family).

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
People will live an age in which good health will be divided into ten divisions, nine of which will lie in seclusion and one in silence.
Muammar bin Khellad said to Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him): God advance your relief. The Imam commented:
O Muammar, that is surely your relief. Mine is no more than a knapsack of a sealed handful of flour.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
To help the weak is the best almsgiving.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The servants (of God) will not attain the reality of faith before they enjoy three characters—knowledge of the religious affairs, moderation in livelihood, and patience in misfortunes.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said to Abu Hashim Dawud bin Al-Qasim Al-Ja’fari:
O Dawud, we have rights that are imposed upon you through the Messenger of God (peace be upon him and his family), and you have rights that are imposed upon us. We regard the rights of those who acknowledge our rights, while we have nothing to do with those who do not acknowledge our rights.
Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) was someday attendant in the session of Al-Ma’mun when people, including Al-Fadhl bin Sahl Thurriyasatain, were discussing whether night preceded day in creation or not. Al-Fadhl addressed the question at Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him). “Do you want me to extract the answer from God’s Book or the astronomical estimations?” “I like you to mention the astronomical estimations first,” said Al-Fadhl. The Imam (peace be upon him) spoke:
You claim that the world began with Cancer and the stars were in its prospect. On that account, Saturn was in Libra, Jupiter in Cancer, Mars in Capricorn, Venus in Pisces, the moon in Taurus, and the sun in Aries in the middle of the sky. This occurs only in daylight.
“What about the Book of God?” asked Al-Fadhl.
Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) answered:
The answer is in God’s saying:
The sun is not supposed to catch-up with the moon, nor is the night to precede the day.
This means that day preceded night.
Ali bin Shuaib said: I, once, visited Abul-Hasan Ar-Reza (peace be upon him). He asked, “O Ali, do you know who is the best earner of livelihood among people?” I answered, “You, my master, is more knowledgeable than me.” He (peace be upon him) said:
The best earner of livelihood among people is that who improves others’ livelihoods out of his livelihood.
Imam Ar-Reza, peace be upon him, asked Ali bin Shuaib, “O Ali, do you know who is the worst earner of livelihood among people?” “You are more knowledgeable?” answered Ali. The Imam (peace be upon him) said:
The worst earner of livelihood is that who deprives others of improving their livelihoods through his earnings.
O Ali, use good neighborhood with the graces, for they are wild—they will not return if they leave.
O Ali, the evilest of people is that who deprives others of his aid, eats alone, and lashes his slave.
In the Eid ul-Fitr, a man told Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) that he had broken his fast with dates and dust of the tomb. The Imam answered:
You have joined the prophetic tradition to the blessing.]

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said to Abu Hashim Al-Ja’fari:
O Abu Hashim, intelligence is the gift of God while the ethics are obtained through exertion of efforts. Thus, he whoever exerts efforts for obtaining ethics will surely obtain them while those who exert efforts for obtaining intelligence will not obtain anything except increasing ignorance.
Ahmed bin Omar and Al-Husain bin Yazid related: We visited Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) and complained against the living changes that we encountered after we had lived in luxury and comfort, and asked him to supplicate to God to return our past luxury and comfort to us. The Imam spoke:
Which extent do you want to attain exactly? Do you want to be kings? Are you pleased to have the same royalty of Tahir and Harthama while your current beliefs are seized from you?
“No,” we answered, “We will never be pleased to have gold and silver as much as this world with all its contents if this causes us to change our current beliefs.”
He (peace be upon him) then added:
God says:
Give thanks, O family of David, And very few of My servants are grateful.
Anticipate good from God, for God will treat those who anticipate good from Him according to their anticipations. God will accept the few deeds of those who satisfy themselves with the little sustenance. He who satisfies himself with the few legal gotten sustenance will have light burdens, his family will be living in comfort, and God will show him the maladies and the remedies of this world and will cause him to leave this world peacefully to move to the Abode of Peace.
Ibn As-Sikkeet asked Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) about God’s current argument against people. The Imam answered:
God’s current argument against people is the mind. It is the means by which the honest with God and the liar are recognized.
“This is by God the most accurate answer,” confessed Ibn As-Sikkeet.
Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
You should not kiss the hand of anyone, because kissing somebody’s hand is as same as praying to him.
Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The mother is kissed on the mouth, the daughter on the cheek, and the Imam between the eyes.

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Imam Ar-Reza (peace be upon him) said:
The stingy do not enjoy comfort, the envious cannot enjoy pleasure, the enslaved cannot be loyal, and the liars do not have personality.

Source:
Tuhaf al-Uqoul

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