On Dhu al-Hijjah the 18th AH (March 632 CE), Prophet Muhammad (PBUH & HP), while returning from his last pilgrimage of Hajj named “the Farewell Hajj”, stopped at Ghadir Khumm (a pond) to make an announcement to the pilgrims who had accompanied him in the pilgrimage.
Ghadir Khumm was a place where people (who were about 10 thousand in number) from different lands like Iraq, Syria, and Egypt would part ways. But before they do, Gabriel revealed to the Prophet (PBUH & HP) one of the last verses of Quran. The verse is now called the verse of al-Tabligh (propagation):
يَا أَيُّهَا الرَّسُولُ بَلِّغْ مَا أُنزِلَ إِلَيْكَ مِن رَّبِّكَ وَإِن لَّمْ تَفْعَلْ فَمَا بَلَّغْتَ رِسَالَتَهُ وَاللَّهُ يَعْصِمُكَ مِنَ النَّاسِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْكَافِرِينَ
O Messenger! Communicate that which has been sent down to you from your Lord, and if you do not, you will not have communicated His message (the whole message of Islam), and Allah shall protect you from the people. Indeed Allah does not guide the faithless lot. (The Holy Quran 5:67)
After the verse was revealed to the Prophet (PBUH & HP), he ordered the caravan to stop and ordered those who have passed Ghadir Khumm return and wait until those who had not yet arrived there join them. (1)
After performing the noon prayer, the Prophet (PBUH & HP) made a speech that now is one of the most famous speeches of the Prophet known as Ghadir sermon. Zeid ibn Argham, one of the famous companions of the Messenger (PBUH & HP) said:
“Once, the Messenger of Allah (PBUH & HP) made a speech for us near a pond named Ghadir which is between Mecca and Medina. Firstly, he praised Allah and talked about God and then said: ‘O people! I’m only a human and it is possible that the Apostle of my God (The angel of death) comes to me and I shall accept his invitation (my life ends) and I am leaving you al-Thaqalayn (two great things). The first one is the book of Allah (Quran) in which is guidance and light so follow it and hold fast to it.’ he advised us about the Book and encouraged us to follow it. Then the Prophet (PBUH) said: ‘and (the second one is) my close family. By Allah, I advise you (to follow) my family, By Allah, I advise you (to follow) my family, By Allah, I advise you (to follow) my family’” (2)
The Hadith above is known as “al-Thaqalayn”. It is one of the most famous Hadiths of the Prophet (PBUH & HP) which indicates that the most important things which the Prophet has left for all Muslims are Quran and the family of the Prophet.
Bara’ ibn Azib, another famous companion of the Messenger, narrates the continuation of the Hadith:
“Then the Prophet raised Ali’s hand (so that all people can see it) and said: ‘don’t you know that I am more deserved to the leadership of the believers than themselves?’. People said: ‘yes, we know’. The Prophet said again: ‘don’t you know that I am more deserved to be the leader of every believer than themselves?’. People said: ‘yes, we know’. Then the Prophet said: ‘anyone whose Mawla is me, then Ali is his Mawla. O God! Be friends with his friends and be enemy of his enemies’. Then, Umar ibn Khattab (the second Caliph) met Ali and told him:
‘Congratulations to you, Congratulations to you, you just got the Mawla of every believer, men or women’”
Arna’oot, one of the most important religious Sunni researchers admits that this historical record is right and trustable. (3)
The word “Mawla” in Arabic language has lots of meanings. Shias and Sunnis disagree on the meaning of the word used in this hadith.
Sunni scholars mostly refuse to believe that the word “Mawla”, used in the Hadith, means “Leader” or “Prior in making decisions for somebody”. They rather suggest it means “friend or helper”. They argue that this word is never used in this meaning (Leader).
Shiites, in reply to Sunni scholars, say that this world have actually been used in this meaning (“the prior”) and some Sunni scholars have admitted that. (4) also, some experts in Arab literature admitted so too like Ghiyath Barghuth, Ajjaj (5), Yahya ibn Ziad al-Farra, Akhfash and so forth. (6)
To prove that the word Mawla in this Hadith means “Leader” and not “friend”, there are many evidences but we mention just one in this text.
The congratulation of Umar ibn Khattab can be a good evidence to prove that “Mawla” here doesn’t mean “friend”. Because, as we said before, Umar says: “Congratulations to you, you just got the Mawla of every believer, men or women” while Imam Ali was the friend of every believer before the Ghadir event, and it doesn’t make sense that he just got the friend of believers in there.
Ghazali, one of the most important reflective Sunni scholars in this regard, says:
“(After the sermon) Umar said: ‘Congratulations O Aba al-Hassan (Imam Ali (AS) ), you just got my friend and every believer’s friend’. So this shows submission and satisfaction (that Imam Ali is the successor of the Prophet) but after this event, due to his desire and love for power, he made himself Caliph and leader” (7)
People had not scattered yet, when Gabriel one more time came to the Prophet and revealed another verse to him:
الْيَوْمَ يَئِسَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِن دِينِكُمْ فَلَا تَخْشَوْهُمْ وَاخْشَوْنِ الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِينَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِي وَرَضِيتُ لَكُمُ الْإِسْلَامَ دِينًا
Today the faithless have despaired of your religion. So do not fear them, but fear Me. Today I have perfected your religion for you, and I have completed My blessing upon you, and I have approved Islam as your religion.
The Hadith is that which is frequently narrated by different people and historians that no one can deny its authenticity.
The family of the Prophet i.e. Imam Ali himself, Lady Fatima, Imam Hassan and Imam Hussain are among the narrators of this Hadith. Also many of the companions of the Messenger narrated this Hadith. Kattani, one of the Sunni scholars, says that about 30 companions of the Prophet narrated this story including: Umar ibn Khattab, Zeid ibn Argham, Abi Hurairah, Sa’d ibn Waghas and etc. (8)
Due to this fact that this Hadith is so frequently narrated, it is called “Mutavatir”, meaning that this Hadith is undeniable.
Shi'as have always regarded the Day of Ghadir as one of the greatest Eids and this day is known to them as Eid al-Ghadir. Imam Sadiq (AS) says that the Eid al-Ghadir is the greatest Eid of Allah. Its name in skies is “the day of Promise” and in the earth “the day of Covenant”. (9)
Shiites believe that this day was the day that Imam Ali (AS), our first Imam, was officially announced to be the successor of the Prophet (PBUH & HP). So this day is a great holiday for them and fasting in it is so recommended. In this day, Shiites go to the house of Seyyed people -the descendants of Imam Ali and Lady Fatimah- and congratulate them. In return, Seyyed people give them gifts. It is highly recommended to conduct parties in this day and give food to the needy ones.
For more information about Ghadir Khumm, you can read the book al-Ghadir, by Allamah al-Amini (Arabic).
- At-Tafsir, al-Ayyashi, vol.1, Pg.332
- Sahih al-Muslim, vol.4, Pg.1873
- Musnad ibn Hanbal, published by ar-Risalah, vol.30, Pg.430
- Sharh al-Maqasid, al-Taftazani, vol.5, Pg.273
- Al-Shfi, Sharif al-Murtaza, vol.2, Pg.270
- At-Tafsir al-Kabir, Fakhr ad-Din ar-Razi, vol.29, Pg.227
- Sir al-A’lamin, al-Ghazali, vol.1, Pg.18
- Nazm al-Mutanathir, al-Kattani, vol.1, Pg.194
- Vasa’il ash-Shiah, Sheik Hurr al-A’meli, vol.5, Pg.224
Let's start our topic with a question. What is the meaning of 'special' in your life? What days have been special to you, your family, or even to your community? The answer may vary from mere personal occasions like birthdays, anniversaries, etc. to more public ones such as New Year's Eve, Easters, or any National Day. The same is true about every religion, culture, or society. Different days of the year have different meanings in every religious community; such as Laylatul Qadr for Muslims.
"(He) Who perfected everything which He created" (Quran 32:7)
"…So whichever way you turn, there is the face of Allah! Allah is indeed all-bounteous, all-knowing." Quran (2:115)
"There is nothing in existence but beauty, for God created the cosmos only in His image, that is, in the image of His infinite beauty." Ibn Arabi [i], & .
This does not, however, mean that all creatures are the same! Can river stones be equal to those of precious pearls in the oceans? The world is the world of differences, and that actually makes it delightful and adventurous. This is also manifested in people's different languages and colors, which is a sign of Allah's balanced and sophisticated creation.
"And of His signs is … the diversity of your languages and your colors. Indeed in that are signs for those of knowledge" (Quran 30:22)
If every stone were like a pearl would have the pearl had the same value that it has now? How about the days of the year? God is indeed in All Days, but again this is God's plan for us to value specific days or nights more than others. The Islamic Holy scripture refers to a night that has the value as equal to a thousand months, called Laylatul Qadr, the Night of Decree. Likewise, the month of Ramadan or that of Dhul Hijja has special significance in Islam during which distinct rituals and etiquettes are prescribed for Muslims. What is it that really makes them unique? For that, we will have to take a look at Islamic resources.
As indicated earlier, certain nights and days are adored in Islamic culture.
In a week, Friday does not only mark the weekend, but it has a special meaning for Muslims. The Surah "al-Juma" in the Quran declares the importance of the Friday prayer that is a congregational prayer held at Friday noon, and it is also referred to as the "the pilgrimage of the poor" in Islamic traditions. 'Forgiveness of sins,' 'reduction of the difficulties in the Day of Judgment,' and 'great rewards for every step to the place of the Friday prayer' are only a scratch over the surface of the benefits of this ritual for those who attend it .
In a year, the three months of Rajab, Shaban, and Ramadan are highly appreciated. It is narrated that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) has said: "Indeed Rajab is the month of Allah, while Shaban is my month and Ramadan is the month of my community" . Ramadan is the month in which the Quran was revealed to the Prophet (PBUH&HP). It is also the month of fasting for Muslims .
In a grand tradition, the Prophet (PBUH&HP) narrates that Allah (SWT) said: "Fasting is for me, and I am the one who rewards for it" , "The gates of the fire are closed (in this month), so ask your Lord not to open them and Satans are in chains. So ask your Lord not to dominate them over you." This month is the best month in the sight of Allah, its days are the best, its nights are the best nights and its hours are the best hours… your breath in it (the month of Ramadan) is glorification (of God), and your sleep in it is worship" .
Moreover, it is in this month that the Night of Decree (Laylatul Qadr) is celebrated. A night that is regarded as equal to a thousand months, and it is when humankind's destiny is decreed for the coming year. It was on this night that the Holy Quran was revealed to the Prophet . Indeed, Ramadan is the best month, and the Night of Qadr (Decree) is its heart. Believers stay awake the entire night and pray for blessings and forgiveness. It is the holiest night of the year, and it would be unwise to be heedless of the tremendous benefits of this night. It is a grand opportunity that God has gifted us with; there is a night that our whole year is decreed and if praying that night, we can ask Him to bless us with a year full of the happiness, the spirituality, the health and the success and whatever good we want in our lives. That's how God gives us the chance to rebuild our destiny, and a new beginning of our spiritual calendars, to ask forgiveness for the sins we have committed in the past year while praying for a better fate in the coming year.
The above briefly indicates how some days, months, and nights are special in Islam. The question now remains how we are going to use them and benefit from them. When we are invited to such a special feast undoubtedly, we have to get prepared and plan for it; otherwise, we gain nothing but regret.
That's the beauty of having faith. Your days and nights are not equal. Each and every one of them has their own distinct meanings. It makes the spiritual journey of a servant sweeter and more enjoyable. He/she has always something to do to get closer to His Lord.
[i] An Arab Andalusian Muslim scholar, mystic, poet, and philosopher, whose works have grown to be very influential.
- Claude Addas, The Experience and Doctrine of Love in Ibn Arab, http://www.ibnarabisociety.org/addas1.html
- William C. Chittick, The Divine Roots of Human Love,
- divine roots
- Al-'Allama al-Majlisi, Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 86, p. 197, Al-Shaykh al-Saduq, Man la yahduruh al-faqih, vol. 1, p. 427, Nuri,
- Al-'Allama al-Majlisi, Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 104, p. 123.
- The Quran 2:183&5
- Shaykh al-Hurr al-Amili, Wasā'il al-Shi'ah, vol. 10, p.400.
- Al-Shaykh al-Saduq, Al-Amāli, p.95.
- The Quran, Chapter 97th.
Do you find your temper on a short fuse when confronting your teenage child? Do you get mad when somebody cuts you off while driving? Don’t these make you clench your jaws, have a rapid heart rate, sweat or tremble?
We all have experienced these physical reactions to anger. In fact, anger is a normal healthy emotion. But when out of control, it can turn destructive and lead to many problems. This article will help us learn how to keep our anger under control and to act more appropriately to lessen the impact it has on our daily life.
As defined in Cambridge dictionary anger is “a strong feeling that makes you want to hurt someone or be unpleasant because of something unfair or unkind that has happened” . It is typical of a human’s behavior to get angry when he/ she is deceived, irritated, attacked or mistreated. If used correctly, anger can be profitable in helping us distinguish between right and wrong.
It can also motivate us to make a change and speak up for ourselves. In some cases, however, it becomes really difficult to manage our anger. This will most probably affect our relationships and lead us to say or do things that we later regret.
That is why the religion of Islam attaches so much importance to controlling this natural human behavior. Imam Sadiq (AS) says in a narration that the one who has no control over his/her anger has no control over his reason .
Sometimes you get so angry that you cannot think straight and are unable to make sound decisions. That’s when anger could be a breeding ground for many evils. As Imam Sadiq (AS) puts: “(uncontrolled) anger is the key (that opens the door) to all kinds of vices” 
Based on vast scientific studies, anger can determine various mental or physical diseases and many other deadly risks. This includes the increase in the number of road accidents, violent crimes, etc.:
“Chronic anger and anxiety can disrupt cardiac function by changing the heart’s electrical stability, hastening atherosclerosis, and increasing systemic inflammation”  “Research also shows that even one five-minute episode of anger is so stressful that it can impair your immune system for more than six hours” . Studies have linked anger to mental health problems like depression, loneliness, anxiety, eating and sleep disorders, phobias, and obsessive-compulsive behavior as well. 
Since this emotional behavior is hard to control and sometimes makes us commit irrational deeds, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) introduces the most courageous person as the one who does not let these negative feelings take over and can overcome his/her anger . Such a person is virtuous in the eyes of Allah:
“those who spend in ease and adversity, and suppress their anger, and excuse [the faults of] the people, and Allah loves the virtuous” (3:134)
Fortunately, Islam recommends some ways to control and overcome anger in our life:
When you find something annoying, you can either choose to vent your frustrations or cool down and take a minute to think twice about the negative consequences that inevitably follow the expression of anger. Why don’t you find some way to put yourself in other people’s shoes? Don’t you want to give yourself a chance to turn that anger to love?
Prophet Muhammad (PBUH&HP) says: “the best people are those who do not get angry easily and get satisfied (calm down) quickly.”
Saying the prayer or any other act of worship can help you tame your anger. Pray for yourself and the person or the situation that has made you angry. Remember Allah and ask Him to soften your heart and help you in forgiving others.
The Holy Prophet (PBUH&HP) has said: “Anger comes from Satan, and Satan was created from fire. Fire is put out by water; so when you become angry, perform ablution (Wudu) with water” .
Nowadays scientists have proven how changing your posture can affect your mood, your energy level as well as the ability to generate positive and negative thoughts. “According to one study from Texans A&M University, lying down can reduce feelings of anger and hostility” .
It has also been reported from Imam Baqir (AS) that: “Verily, anger is a spark ignited by the Devil in the human heart. Indeed, when anyone of you gets angry, his eyes become red, the veins of his neck become swollen, and Satan enters them. Therefore, whosoever among you is concerned about himself on account of it; he should lie down for a while so that the filth of Satan may be removed from him at the time” .
A Chinese proverb says If you are patient in the moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow. So, it is not wise to be swift in seeking revenge. It has also been narrated from Imam Ali (AS) that the best revenge at the time of anger is to show forbearance . When you are fuming over something, before any reaction, ask yourself if you want to live a life filled with vengeful and angry thoughts or a peaceful and decent life in which you try to forgive patiently. Which one would you choose?
Imam Ali (AS) says: “Anger is a very bad companion, it reveals your flaws, brings the evil near and distances the good” .
It is narrated from Imam Ali (AS) that the most powerful people in recognition of the right are the ones who do not get angry .
Imam Ali (AS) introduces anger management as a way of developing wisdom . Since a wise person would never do anything regrettable at the time of anger.
Imam Sadiq (AS) has said: “If someone got angry with you three times but did not insult you, then choose him/her as a friend” . In another narration, Imam Ali (AS) says making your friend angry will lead to separation from her/him .
Imam Ali (AS) has advised us to keep silent at the time of anger: “Protect yourself from anger for its beginning is insanity and its end is remorse” .
Anger management will also make you close to the holy infallible Imams and follow in their footsteps. Then you will become a dignified person who deserves to be saved from Allah’s wrath both in this world and the hereafter.
“Muhammad, the Apostle of Allah, and those who are with him are hard against the faithless and merciful amongst themselves” (48:29)
As stated above anger can be constructive too. When managed well, anger has no or very few detrimental consequences. Instead, it is a warning sign of corruption or an evil action; that something around you is not right. It then motives you to take action to correct the wrong. In such cases, Muslims are recommended to express anger for the right, to defend the good, and only to gain Allah’s satisfaction.
Yet, how you end up handling the anger is of great importance, too. As Muslims, we are not allowed to violate anyone’s right or act indecently at the time of anger. All our actions should be based on rational considerations and the Divine laws. Imam Sadiq (AS) says in this regard: “A believer is a person who when angered, his/her anger does not lead him away from that which is true” .
- al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 305, no. 13
- al‑Kafi, vol. 2, p. 303, hadith 3
- happiness stress heart disease
- emotional wellness
- harmfull effects of holding anger
- Nahj al-Fasaha, p. 549, hadith 1872
- Nahj al-Fasaha, p. 286, hadith 660
- movement can feel you better
- Al-Kulayni, Usul al-Kafi, Vol. III.
- Tasnif ghurar al-hikam wa-durar al-kalim, p. 285, hadith 6400
- ibid, p. 302, hadith 6893
- ibid, p246, hadith 5062
- ibid, p. 242, hadith 4919
- Ma’dan al-Jawahir, p. 34
- Naj al-Balaqa (Sobhi Salih), p. 559, hadith 480
- Al-Amidi, Gharar ul-Hikam wa darar ul-Kalim, hadith 2635
- Al-Kulayni, al-Kafi, vol. 2, p. 186, hadith 11
- anger in islam