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It seems proper to refer to some lessons that are derived from the method of the Holy Qur'an's reforming and guiding the communities to the right path.


Second Lesson

Depending upon the previous lesson, the second lesson that is learnt from the Holy Qur'an's method of educating both the individuals and societies is the necessity of constructing the ethical and doctrinal personalities of the Muslim individuals. In this construction, the Holy Qur'an has used many methods. In my lectures entitled al-Ruju'ila Allah (Return to Almighty Allah)', I have discusses all these methods in details, saying:

The Holy Qur'an, in the construction of the ethical and doctrinal personalities of the Muslim individuals, has taken the method of the three worlds that are experienced by human beings; namely intellect, heart and soul. For instance, the Holy Qur'an has connected the heavens' stopping its blessings to reach people, the lands' closing off their wealth, the evils' predominating on people and the non-respondence to the supplications—he has connected all these phenomena to the negligence of the duty of enjoining the right and forbidding the evil. This connection takes us to the result that to get rid of such harmful phenomena, the community must carry out this duty. To this meaning, the following hadith refers by saying, "If you forsake (carrying out the duty of) enjoining the right and forbidding the evil, blessings will be withdrawn from you and misfortunes will be inflicted upon you and the evils among you will be given free hand over you and then your supplications will not be responded." [1]

On the top of the methods followed by the Holy Qur'an are the following:

(1)                  The Holy Qur'an displays scenes from the horrors of death and the Resurrection Day, such as the disputes of the atheists and the indecent people in Hellfire with each other or with their devils.

(2)                  The Holy Qur'an reminds of Almighty Allah's deeds with those who turned away from the obedience to Him: "Do they not travel through the earth, and see what the end of those before them who did evil was? Allah brought utter destruction on them, and similar fates await those who reject Allah, 47/10" "They (the unbelievers) denied our Signs, and Allah called them to account for their sins. For Allah is strict in punishment. 3/11"

(3)                  The Holy Qur'an lists the innumerable graces that Almighty Allah has conferred upon His creatures and then they, according to an undeniable natural rule, must repay these graces with gratitude: "Is there any reward for good other than good? 55/60"

(4)                  Finally, the Holy Qur'an confirms that pleasure will cover man's heart, life and community if he carries out the law of Almighty Allah: "If the people of the towns had but believed and feared Allah, We should indeed have opened out to them All kinds of blessings from heaven and earth. 7/96"

It is doctrine and ethics that sketch the goal experienced by man and thus they identify the features of his march. For instance, when a charitable project is suggested or a help is needed, the first to donate or offer that help will be naturally the religious person who seeks Almighty Allah's pleasure and hopes for His rewards, not the one who, being far away from the religion, cares for nothing other than worldly pleasures. Describing such persons, the Holy Qur'an says, "They are already in despair, just as the unbelievers are in despair about those buried in graves. 60/13"

In the previous example, doctrine will motivate the religious persons to contribute in charitable works. Ethics and doctrines thus leave great influences on the individuals' conducts and urge them to carry out the religious instructions.

On account of this, I call upon you to be among the seekers of the Next World rather than this transient world, for the main reason for the deterioration and deviation of the _ Muslim community has been that the Muslims missed the goal for which they live and thus they had to follow various paths. The Holy Qur'an says, "Verily, this is My way, leading straight. Follow it; follow not other paths. They will scatter you about from His great path. Thus doth He command you that ye may be righteous. 6/153"

Now, our main task is to fill in the spaces of the intellects and hearts of the community with true beliefs and ethics so that its individuals will correct their march and regulate their lives according to the will of Almighty Allah. We must also pursue the method of the Holy Qur'an in enlivening and softening the hearts and disciplining and feeding the souls with the true beliefs that are the origin of decencies. In this respect, the Holy Qur'an says, "Has not the time arrived for the believers that their hearts in all humility should engage in the remembrance of Allah and of the truth which has been revealed to them, and that they should not become like those to whom was given revelation aforetime, but long ages passed over them and their hearts grew hard? For many among them. are rebellious transgressors. 57/16"

Intellectuals and educationists are advised to study thoroughly the topic of the Holy Qur'an's methods of admonition and self-discipline since if a rational person ponders truthfully over the holy verses in this respect, he will certainly review the course of his life. The following holy verse is a clear example on the Holy Qur'an's method of admonition and self-discipline: "How many were the gardens and springs they left behind; and corn-fields and noble buildings; and wealth and conveniences of life, wherein they had taken such delight? Thus was their end! And We made other people inherit those things. And neither heaven nor earth shed a tear over them nor were they given a respite again. 44/25-29"

In this regard, I advise the gentle readers to read the book entitled 'al-Qalb al-Salim (the Sound Heart)'. This book is of two volumes—written by a pure-hearted author—the first of which discusses the doctrine while the other discusses the ethics.

[1] Shaykh al-tusiy: tahdhib al-ahkam 6:176