Hazrat Mola Ali, Sher-e-Khuda (ra) is the cousin and son in law of the Holy Prophet Sayedna Muhammad(swm).He was born inside the Kaaba. Rasulallah (swm) said about him,"I am the city of the knowledge and Ali is the gate." He was the last of Caliph-e-Rashideen. Through him flows most of the sufi Tariqas, including the Qadiriya and Chishtiya orders. He is regarded as "Bab al Wilayah" ( the opening gate of Wilayah). He was martyred on the 21 of Ramadan 40 AH.His Astana-e-Alia(shrine) is in Najaf, Iraq.
The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi we Salaam) loved him very much. The night when the Holy Prophet was migrating to Medina, his house was surrounded by the bloodthirsty tribesmen, who had plotted to assassinate him. They were ready to kill any person who came out of the house. In such a situation, the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi we Sallam) asked Hadrat Ali (R.A.) to sleep in his bed. He followed the command gladly and immediately jumped in the bed.
Although the Meccans did not accept his mission, they considered the Holy Prophet(sallallahu alaiyhi wasallam) the most trustworthy man of Mecca and continued keeping their trusts (cash and gold etc.) with him. It was Ali (R.A.) to whom the Holy Prophet gave the deposits to return to the owners, when he was leaving Makkah for Madinah. Ali (R.A.) migrated to Medina after returning the deposits.
Hadrat Ali (R.A.) was a very brave man. He participated in almost all the battles against the non-believers during the time of the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi we Salaam). The stories of his bravery are famous in history.
In the first battle of Islam at Badr, he was holding the flag of Islamic army. When three famous warriors of Quraish challenged the Muslims, according to Arab tradition, Hadrat Ali (R. A. ) along with Hadrat Hamzah and Abu Ubaidah (R.A.) accepted the challenge. He killed his opponent, Walid only with one thrust of his sword and cut him in two pieces. Then he helped Hadrat Abu Ubaidah (R.A.) to kill the next Quraishi warrior.
In the battle of Uhud when Hadrat Mus'ab bin 'Umair, the bearer of the Islamic standard, was martyred, it was Hadrat Ali (R.A.) who held it up. Seeing this one of the non-believers, Abu Sa'd challenged him. Hadrat Ali attacked him and he fell down on the ground naked. Ali (R.A.) felt pity on him and left him in that condition.
In the battle of the Trench, all-Arabia fame warrior, 'Abdwood challenged the Muslims after jumping on his horse across the trench. Nobody dared to accept his challenge except Ali (R.A.). The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi we Salaam) warned Ali about 'Abdwood but Ali insisted on going and fighting with him. Then the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi wa Sallam) gave him his famous sword "Dhulfiqar" and put a turban on his head before he went to fight with 'Abdwood. A few minutes later people saw 'Abdwood's head was cut off from his body by Ali.
Because of his bravely Hadrat Ali was popularly called "Asadullah"(The Lion of Allah). In the battle of Khaibar against Jews, the Muslims tried to conquer the strongest Jewish fort, Qumus, but were not successful in the beginning. Then the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi we Salaam) said, "I will give the command and the standard tomorrow to such a brave person who loves Allah and His Prophet and whom Allah and His Prophet love. Everybody was desiring to be that fortunate man. The people were rather surprised when the next morning the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi we Salaam) called Ali who was sick and his eyes were sore. The Holy Prophet applied his finger, wet with his saliva, over the eyes of Ali (R.A.) and they were cured immediately. Then he gave the standard, and advised him. "First of all call them towards Islam. Even if one man is guided towards Islam because of you, it would be better than red camels."
Following the advice of the Holy Prophet Hadrat Ali invited the Jews towards Islam. Instead of accepting the Right Path they sent their commander Marhab, the great warrior of Arabia and one of the bravest men of his time. He challenged Hadrat Ali to fight. Ali (R.A.) accepted the challenge and slew him in one attack. His famous sword cut Marhab's body into two pieces.
He showed great bravery in each and every battle he fought and earned fame. He was counted as one of the great warriors of Arabia.
Ali (R.A.) was not only a great warrior but a great scholar as well. The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi we Salaam) said about him, I am the city of knowledge and Ali is its gate." He was one of the great jurists among the Companions. The Holy Prophet appointed him as the Qadi (Judge) of Yemen during his life time. He was a master of Arabic and his writings were as effective as his speech. More about his scholarly services to Islam would be mentioned at the end.
In 9 A.H., the first Hajj of Islam took place. Hadrat Abu Bakr (R.A.) was appointed as the leader of the Hajj group. After he left Medina revelation came to the Holy Prophet (Chapter IX. few verses in the beginning of the chapter) according to which the treaty with the non-believers had to be dissolved and they were given four month's notice. The announcement was to be made on the great day of Hajj. The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi we Salaam) asked Hadrat Ali to carry the message of Allah on his behalf. He gave Hadrat Ali (R.A.) his own she-camel, Qaswa on which Hadrat Ali rode and went to Mecca to read out the message before the crowd on the occasion of Hajj.
There are so many virtues and services of Ali (R.A.) that it is difficult to mention them all in this short book. On many occasions the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi wa Sallam) had prayed for him. When he sent Ali to Yemen in Ramadan 10 A.H. he blessed Ali (R.A.) with the following prayer: "0h Allah put truth on his tongue, and enlighten his heart with the light of guidance." Then he himself put turban on his head and gave the black standard.
On one occasion the Holy Prophet said to Ali, "You pertain to me and I pertain to you, " He also said, "When I am patron of anyone, Ali is his patron also." Once the Holy Prophet said, "Only a hypocrite does not love Ali and a believer does not hate him."
According to a Hadith transmitted by Imam Ahmad the Holy Prophet said to Ali, "You have a resemblance to Jesus whom the Jews hated so much that they slandered his mother and whom Christians loved so much that they placed him in a position not rightly his. Ali afterwards said, "Two (types of) people will perish on my account, one who loves me so excessively that he praises me for what I do not possess, and one who hates me so much that he will be impelled by his hatred to slander me."
The death of the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu 'alaihi we Salaam) was a great shock to Hadrat Ali (R.A.). He had attended him day and night during his illness, and after his death he gave bath to the Holy Corpse and enshrouded it.
Hadrat Ali (R.A.) had taken pledge of loyalty on the hands of all the three past Khalifahs. However he was late in taking pledge at the hand of Hadrat Abu Bakr (R.A.). The reason why he was late in taking pledge on the hands of Hadrat Abu Bakr (R.A.) was the serious illness of his beloved wife, Hadrat Fatima (R.A.) and that he was busy in collection of the Holy Qur'an. It is mentioned in the famous history book, Tabaqat ibn Sa'd: When Hadrat Abu Bakr (R.A.) enquired of Ali (R.A.) why he was so late in taking pledge of loyalty and whether he disliked his "Khilafat", Ali (R.A.) replied, "I do not dislike your leadership but the fact is that I had taken an oath after the death of the Holy Prophet not to put on my sheet (i.e. not to engage in any work) except for performing Salat until I have collected all the parts of the Holy Qur'an." The Hadrat Ali (R.A.) took pledge of loyalty on the hand of Abu Bakr and helped him throughout his Khilafat. He was very active during the time of Hadrat Umar and also married his daughter, Umm-i-Kulthum to him. In the matter of Hadrat Uthman's election he voted in his favour as has been mentioned before.
Hadrat Ali (R.A.) was one of the very important members of "Shura" (Advisory Council) during the time of the first three Khalifahs. He was also the great jurist (Mufti) of Medina during the time of past Khalifahs. He was among the panel of six persons who had to select the Khalifah amongst themselves after Hadrat Umar (R.A.). Hadrat Uthman had great regard for him and consulted him in all the matters. His sons were the main guards at Uthman's residence when the rebels laid siege to his house.
Thus we conclude that Hadrat Ali (R.A.) gave his fullest possible support to all of his predecessors.
* There is no treasure like knowledge.
* The realm of knowledge has no bounds.
* The chief of talents is knowledge.
* Knowledge leads to wisdom, accordingly the educated man is the wise one; riches diminish by expenditure, while knowledge is increased by dissemination.
* A wise man needs each day an hour set apart in which to examine his conscience, and measure what he has gained or lost.
* The heart is the source of wisdom, with the ear as its channel.
* Philosophy is a, tree growing in the heart, and bearing its fruit on the tongue.
* Belief and wisdom are twin brothers; Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'ala accepts not the one without the other.
* While you live you die. Each breath of a man is a step nearer death.
* Death awaits every living creature and everything must end.
* You are the game that death hunts.
* If you stand still, it will seize you;
* If you flee, it will overtake you.
* Books are the gardens of the learned.
* The man of learning lives even after his death.
* The ignorant man is dead, while still alive.
* The scholar knows an ignorant man, because formerly he was ignorant himself, but the ignorant knows not the scholar, never having been one.
* He is very unfortunate who cannot in his life-time gain a few sincere friends and sympathisers and more unfortunate is the one who has gained them and then to have lost them (through his deeds).
* There is no greater wealth than wisdom, No greater poverty than ignorance,No greater heritage than culture, And no greater friend and helpmate than consultation.
* The strongest man is he who can fight against himself.
* The strongest man is he who can make his reason conquers his passions.
* Protect your wealth by means of Zakat.
* Cure your sick through offering of Alms and destroy difficulties and dangers through prayers.
* One without pity for others will never be pitied.
* Whoever has compassion upon orphans, will see his own children treated kindly.
* There is no better means of prolongation of life than Sadaqah (alms) and there is no better thing than prayers for emancipation from evils. There is no better method of making human beings look venerable than by good manners and there is no better remedy than repentance for the forgiveness of sins. Beware that Sadqah (Alms) is a curtain between oneself and the fire of hell and is an easy medium for the Pool-e-Serat and is a protection from punishment.
* Treat people in such a way and live amongst them in such a manner that if you die they weep over you and if you are alive they crave for your company.
* I recommend five things to you, the attainment of which will be worth any amount of hardship: Not to expect anything from anyone but from God; not to fear anything but your sins; not to be ashamed to say, Â‘I do not knowÂ’, when asked about something you are not aware of; not to be ashamed of learning a thing you do not know. Ever preserve the virtue of patience, for patience in relation to 'Eeman' (Faith) is like the head in relation to the body. And there is no good in a body which has no head, neither in 'Eeman' which has no patience.
* He who understands Divine Greatness never boasts.
* A sincere friend is sincere even in hardships.
* Do not envy the glory and magnificence of others, let not pride and grandeur of this world puff you, nor let sorrow over its wickedness and poverty depress you; for, all glory and magnificence shall fade, all worldly bliss pass away and all evil and poverty surely end, as we shall ourselves pass away.
* Humbleness and prostration bring nearness to God.
* God the Almighty selected us from His Creation and selected for us our followers who assist us. They are pleased when we are pleased and are sorrowful in our sorrows. They give up their lives and property for our cause. Therefore they are ours and will be with us in Paradise.
* If you believe in God, abstain from forbidden things, then you will be saved from all evils. If you please God, God will also please you.
* Simplest way of attaining GodÂ’s mercy is to be good to all humanity.
* The descendants of the Beloved Prophet (Peace and Blessings upon him) are his Confidants, the Shelter of his commands, the Trustees of his knowledge, the Stronghold of the Qur'an and the Mountains of his Faith.
* It was his firm belief that a ruler should rule not to please himself but to bring happiness to the ruled. And it was on the basis of this principle that he laid down rules for his people to carry out.
* You must develop in yourself, kindness and love for your subjects. Do not behave with them as if you were a ferocious beast.
* Muslims and non-Muslims should be treated alike. Muslims are your brothers and non-Muslims are human beings just like you.
* Do not feel ashamed to forgive. Do not, be hasty with punishment. Do not quickly lose your temper over mistakes and failures of those over whom you rule. Anger and desire for vengeance are not going to be of much use to you in administration.
* Do not allow favouritism and nepotism to force you to violate your duties to God and man, and drive you towards tyranny and oppression.
* While selecting officers take care that you do not select such persons as have served tyrannical and oppressive rulers and have been responsible for atrocities and savage cruelties.
* Select honest and kind persons as your advisers and from amongst them prefer those who speak out the bitter truth to you unreservedly without fear or favour.
* Appointments in the first place must be on probation.
* Keep your officers well paid so that they may not be tempted to practice corruption or misappropriation.
* Appoint confidential officers secretly to watch the activities of your officers and staff and report to you about their behavior.
* Your secretaries should be the cream of your civil, judicial or military service. Choose the best among them irrespective of age or period of service.
* All letters or applications should be dealt with by the officers and replies or orders about them should be drafted by them only. No subordinate must be allowed to be the eyes and the mind of these officers.
* Let your subjects into your confidence and make them feel that you are their well-wisher and friend.
* Never break a promise or go against the terms of a treaty. It is a sin against God.
* You must take care of your traders but should never allow them to resort to hoarding, black-marketing and profiteering.
* Help handicraft; it reduces poverty and raises the standard of life.
* Agriculturists are assets to the state and should be protected.
* Remember that your sacred duty is to look after the poor, disabled and the orphans. Let not your officers humiliate them, ill-treat them or oppress them. Help them, protect them and let them approach you whenever they are in need of your help.
* Avoid bloodshed; do not kill anybody unless he deserves to be killed according to the Canons of Islam.