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As regards the Allegiance and its Influence on the Authority of the Leadership

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As regards the Allegiance and its Influence on the Authority of the Leadership:

(These include) what belongs to others. This is like what I said in the practical religious dissertation (Risala ‘amaliya), “The scholar does not forcefully implement his leadership on the nation against their will or by pretense. It is not like some say that if the scholar practices his leadership then he must be obeyed. However, the nation must be willing to accept his leadership with conviction. Here, the nation does not mean the whole nation. The scholar-leader is not selected by public elections open for all people to cast votes. However, we mean by the nation the experts and specialists in this field. These are the scholars and the prominent figures and lecturers at the honorable Hawza who are pious, honest, fair and knowledgeable of the requirements of social work and the implementation of the blessed Islamic project.”([1]) Then, there would be a mechanism set to form a board or council of experts who have the mentioned qualities. If those witness to a scholar with knowledge, expertise and competence to lead the matters of the nation, and if they had a prominent presence in the Hawza, then, the people at the base would largely believe in the leadership of this scholar to enable him to lead the great project of Islam.

I have also said in some conversations, “This condition is evident by Allah’s saying, {there is no compulsion in religion}. The point is that the scholar must not impose this on the nation even if he was evidently and actually competent. The practical tradition of the infallibles (P) indicates that they did not practice their public leadership to the matters of the nation, despite the fact that it is actually proven to them, unless after taking allegiance from people to listen and obey. The Prophet (P) did not enact his leadership of the people’s affairs and did not establish his blessed state in Mecca. Instead, it was in Madina after the residents paid allegiance to listening and obeying in the first and second allegiance of Oqba. They promised to protect him against what they protected their women and belongings from. One would find that the social obligations linked to the circumstances of enablement – such as al-Jihad and Friday prayer – were not revealed to the Prophet (P) in Mecca as the conditions there were those of oppression. Imam Ali (P) also only assumed the Caliphate after people flocked in to pay allegiance to him after the murder of Caliph Othman. He (P) said, in an indication to this condition, “By Allah, who has divided the grain and created the breeze, if those present had not been here; if I had had no evidence that there were supporters; and if Allah had not asked scholars for a pledge, not to accept the gluttony of an oppressor nor the hunger of an oppressed, I would have left this matter as it existed. I would have granted the last the rule of the first. You would have found out that your whole world for me was worth less than the sneeze of a goat.”([2]) It is not sufficient to assume the leadership nor to spread the leadership without the will of the nation.

Such an accurate consideration would resolve a number of problems on the scholar’s leadership. There is the issue of multiplicity in a single community. Alternatively, would it be possible to extend the leadership of the scholar who is resident in a certain country to another country? Additionally, others like to say that if one scholar claims leadership, others should obey and submit as such matters would be decided upon by decisions of the board of experts.”([3])

The influence of this allegiance in the time of the infallibles (P) is taking the pledge from people that they would obey and support him as he is ordered to work using natural methods and not miraculously according to the divine maxim of (Be, it will become).

As for the allegiance in the time of the absence and deputyship of the infallible, it is necessary form more than one reason:

1-  In order to discover whom the scholar who meets the conditions of leadership of the nation is, as there is no distinct assignment by an explicit text.

2-  To present him to the nation by this title thus proving the necessity of obedience of the scholar meeting the conditions. Therefore, the nation bears responsibility in obedience and support.

3-  In order to stop anyone pretending to be a leader for this honorable and risky position.

4-  In order to be able to implement sharia law according to people’s choice and will without oppression, violence or coercion after they have committed to obey and follow.



([1]) Subul Sala,: 33; Mas’ala (Question) (32)

([2]) Nahjul Balagha: 1/36; Shaqshaqiya Sermon.

([3]) Rhetoric of the Era (Khitab al-Marhala): 4/448.

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