Ultimate refutation against the authority of the scholar (Wilayat Faqih)

Imamah can be translated as “leadership”, it comes from the verb amma which means “to lead the way, lead by one’s example”. However, in our theology, Imamah means specifically the leadership of the Ummah. Every single islamic sect believes in Imamah, although they do not agree on its specifics. For example: sunnis believe in Imamah even though they disagree with us – twelvers – in regards of infallibility or divine designation. They believe it is necessary for the Imรขm/Caliph to be from Quraysh, however, ibadis disagree and say that, rather, the Imฤm can be from any tribe. Thus, it is evident that every single islamic sect believes someway in the concept of Imamah, which merely means “obligatory obedience”.Khomeini is famous (or rather, infamous) for developing a religious-political theory fully based on the concept of some kind of obligatory obedience to the jurist (faqih). According to Khomeini, such authority has been given by Ahl al-Bayt themselves.

Khomeini writes: ,,The matter of the authority of the jurist is not established by the council of experts, [rather] the authority of the jurist is a matter established by Allah, and it is the same as the authority of the Messenger of Allah.” [ลžahifa Imam Khumainฤซ (farsฤซ), vol. 15, pg. 358]

He says: ,,If a knowledgeable and just jurist takes the issue of forming a government in his hands, and he takes care of the social affairs which the Prophet – peace be upon him – takes on, then people are obliged to listen to him and obey him.” [Al-Hukลซmah al-Islฤmiyyah, pg. 49]

He also says: ,,Just as the Most Noble Messenger was entrusted with the implementation of divine ordinances and the establishment of the institutions of Islam, and just as Allah Almighty set him (the jurist) up over the Muslims as their leader and ruler, making obedience to him obligatory, so, too, the just jurists must be leaders and rulers, implementing divine ordinances and establishing the institutions of Islam.” [Islamic Government (english). Al-Islam: translation by Hamid Algar.]

It is explicit in Khomeini’s words that in his theory, obedience to the jurist is obligatory. However such claim brings serious consequences for Khomeini’s Islam, as we shall see.

Sawrah b. Kulayb asked Abu Ja’far, peace be upon him, regarding the words of Allah: ,,And on the Day of Resurrection you will see those who lied about Allah with their faces blackened. He said: “[This verse refers to] whoever says: ,,I am an Imam”, when in fact he is not an Imam.” I said: ,,Even if he is an ‘alawi?” He said: ,,Even if he is an ‘alawi.” I said: ,,Even if he is from the children of ‘Ali b. Abi Talib, peace be upon him?” He said: ,,Even then.” [Kulayni: al-Kafi, vol. 1, pg. 372]

ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ูŠูŽุญู’ูŠูŽู‰ ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุญู’ู…ูŽุฏูŽ ุจู’ู†ู ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุนูŽู†ู’ ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ุณูู†ูŽุงู†ู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุจููŠ ุณูŽู„ุงู…ู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุณูŽูˆู’ุฑูŽุฉูŽ ุจู’ู†ู ูƒูู„ูŽูŠู’ุจู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุงุจูŠ ุฌุนูุฑ (ุนูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ู‡ู ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู„ุงู…) ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ู‚ูู„ู’ุชู ู„ูŽู‡ู ู‚ูŽูˆู’ู„ู ุงู„ู„ู‡ ุนูŽุฒู‘ูŽ ูˆูŽุฌูŽู„ู‘ูŽ ูˆูŽูŠูŽูˆู’ู…ูŽ ุงู„ู’ู‚ููŠุงู…ูŽุฉู ุชูŽุฑูŽู‰ ุงู„ู‘ูŽุฐููŠู†ูŽ ูƒูŽุฐูŽุจููˆุง ุนูŽู„ูŽู‰ ุงู„ู„ู‡ ูˆูุฌููˆู‡ูู‡ูู…ู’ ู…ูุณู’ูˆูŽุฏู‘ูŽุฉูŒ ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ู…ูŽู†ู’ ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ุฅูู†ู‘ููŠ ุฅูู…ูŽุงู…ูŒ ูˆูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ุณูŽ ุจูุฅูู…ูŽุงู…ู ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ู‚ูู„ู’ุชู ูˆูŽุฅูู†ู’ ูƒูŽุงู†ูŽ ุนูŽู„ูŽูˆููŠู‘ุงู‹ ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ูˆูŽุฅูู†ู’ ูƒูŽุงู†ูŽ ุนูŽู„ูŽูˆููŠู‘ุงู‹ ู‚ูู„ู’ุชู ูˆูŽุฅูู†ู’ ูƒูŽุงู†ูŽ ู…ูู†ู’ ูˆูู„ู’ุฏู ุนูŽู„ููŠู‘ู ุงุจู’ู†ู ุฃูŽุจููŠ ุทูŽุงู„ูุจู (ุนูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ู‡ู ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู„ุงู…) ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ูˆูŽุฅูู†ู’ ูƒูŽุงู†ูŽ.

ย It is narrated that Abu ‘Abdillah, peace be upon him, said: ,,Whoever claims Imamah when in fact he is not from its people, [such person] is a disbeliever.” [Kulaynฤซ: al-Kafi, vol. 1, pg. 372.]

ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ูŠูŽุญู’ูŠูŽู‰ ุนูŽู†ู’ ุนูŽุจู’ุฏู ุงู„ู„ู‡ ุจู’ู†ู ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ุนููŠุณูŽู‰ ุนูŽู†ู’ ุนูŽู„ููŠู‘ู ุจู’ู†ู ุงู„ู’ุญูŽูƒูŽู…ู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุจูŽุงู†ู ุนูŽู†ู ุงู„ู’ููุถูŽูŠู’ู„ู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุจููŠ ุนูŽุจู’ุฏู ุงู„ู„ู‡ (ุนูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ู‡ู ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู„ุงู…) ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ู…ูŽู†ู ุงุฏู‘ูŽุนูŽู‰ ุงู„ุงู…ูŽุงู…ูŽุฉูŽ ูˆูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ุณูŽ ู…ูู†ู’ ุฃูŽู‡ู’ู„ูู‡ูŽุง ููŽู‡ููˆูŽ ูƒูŽุงููุฑูŒ.

ย Ibn Abi Ya’fรผr heard Abu ‘Abdillah, peace be upon him, saying: ,,On the Day of Judgement, there are three people whom Allฤh will not talk to, nor purify, and they will have a painful punishment: Whoever claims Imamah from Allah when [in fact] it is not for him; whoever fights an Imฤm from Allah; and whoever thinks that these two have a share in Islฤm.” [Kulayni: al-Kafi, vol. 1, pg. 373]

ุนูุฏู‘ูŽุฉูŒ ู…ูู†ู’ ุฃูŽุตู’ุญูŽุงุจูู†ูŽุง ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุญู’ู…ูŽุฏูŽ ุจู’ู†ู ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุนูŽู†ู ุงู„ู’ูˆูŽุดู‘ูŽุงุกู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฏูŽุงูˆูุฏูŽ ุงู„ู’ุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุงุฑู ุนูŽู†ู ุงุจู’ู†ู ุฃูŽุจููŠ ูŠูŽุนู’ูููˆุฑู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุจููŠ ุนูŽุจู’ุฏู ุงู„ู„ู‡ (ุนูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ู‡ู ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู„ุงู…) ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ุณูŽู…ูุนู’ุชูู‡ู ูŠูŽู‚ููˆู„ู ุซูŽู„ุงุซูŽุฉูŒ ู„ุง ูŠููƒูŽู„ู‘ูู…ูู‡ูู…ู ุงู„ู„ู‡ ูŠูŽูˆู’ู…ูŽ ุงู„ู’ู‚ููŠูŽุงู…ูŽุฉู ูˆูŽู„ุง ูŠูุฒูŽูƒู‘ููŠู‡ูู…ู’ ูˆูŽู„ูŽู‡ูู…ู’ ุนูŽุฐูŽุงุจูŒ ุฃูŽู„ููŠู…ูŒ ู…ูŽู†ู ุงุฏู‘ูŽุนูŽู‰ ุฅูู…ูŽุงู…ูŽุฉู‹ ู…ูู†ูŽ ุงู„ู„ู‡ ู„ูŽูŠู’ุณูŽุชู’ ู„ูŽู‡ู ูˆูŽู…ูŽู†ู’ ุฌูŽุญูŽุฏูŽ ุฅูู…ูŽุงู…ุงู‹ ู…ูู†ูŽ ุงู„ู„ู‡ ูˆูŽู…ูŽู†ู’ ุฒูŽุนูŽู…ูŽ ุฃูŽู†ู‘ูŽ ู„ูŽู‡ูู…ูŽุง ูููŠ ุงู„ุงุณู’ู„ุงู…ู ู†ูŽุตููŠุจุงู‹.

ย Abu ‘Abdillah, peace be upon him, said: ,,Whoever associates in Imamah a false imฤm with the Imam of Allah, [such person] is a polytheist.” [Kulayni: al-Kafi, vol. 1, pg. 373]

ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ูŠูŽุญู’ูŠูŽู‰ ุนูŽู†ู’ ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ุงู„ู’ุญูุณูŽูŠู’ู†ู ุนูŽู†ู’ ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ุณูู†ูŽุงู†ู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุทูŽู„ู’ุญูŽุฉูŽ ุจู’ู†ู ุฒูŽูŠู’ุฏู ุนูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุจููŠ ุนูŽุจู’ุฏู ุงู„ู„ู‡ (ุนูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ู‡ู ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู„ุงู…) ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ู…ูŽู†ู’ ุฃูŽุดู’ุฑูŽูƒูŽ ู…ูŽุนูŽ ุฅูู…ูŽุงู…ู ุฅูู…ูŽุงู…ูŽุชูู‡ู ู…ูู†ู’ ุนูู†ู’ุฏู ุงู„ู„ู‡ ู…ูŽู†ู’ ู„ูŽูŠู’ุณูŽุชู’ ุฅูู…ูŽุงู…ูŽุชูู‡ู ู…ูู†ูŽ ุงู„ู„ู‡ ูƒูŽุงู†ูŽ ู…ูุดู’ุฑููƒุงู‹ ุจูุงู„ู„ู‡.

ย Regarding the words of Allah: ,,And most of them believe not in Allฤh except while they associate others with him.” Abลซ ‘Abdillah, peace be upon him, said: “[This refers to] associating partners [with Him] in obedience, not in worship.” [Al-Hurr al-Amili: Wasฤ’il al-Shiah, vol. 18, pg. 91. Qom: Ahl al-Bayt Foundation.]

ุนู† ุถุฑูŠุณุŒ ุนู† ุฃุจูŠ ุนุจุฏ ุงู„ู„ู‡ (ุนู„ูŠู‡ ุงู„ุณู„ุงู…) ููŠ ู‚ูˆู„ ุงู„ู„ู‡ ุนุฒ ูˆุฌู„: ” ูˆู…ุง ูŠุคู…ู† ุฃูƒุซุฑู‡ู… ุจุงู„ู„ู‡ ุฅู„ุง ูˆู‡ู… ู…ุดุฑูƒูˆู† ” ู‚ุงู„: ุดุฑูƒ ุทุงุนุฉ ูˆู„ูŠุณ ุดุฑูƒ ุนุจุงุฏุฉ

Hence we can conclude that claiming leadership over the Ummah – i.e obligatory obedience is disbelief in Allฤh. Khomeini, perhaps, did not claim infallibility and divine designation (although some argue he did), just like Zaydi imฤms did not, yet they were disbelievers.

Khomeini stated that the “Wali al-Faqih” should be chosen by a council of experts; similarly, Sunnis claim that the imam/caliph should be selected by a council.

Again, it is important to note the difference between the general aแนฃl of Imamah and the specific characteristics of the Twelver Imamah; all the sects agree regarding general Imamah, however they disagree regarding the specifics, such as: being from Quraysh for Sunnis; being from the Fatimid lineage for Zaydis; being infallible and appointed by the previous Imฤm for Twelvers. However, the narrations prove that claiming general Imฤmah is disbelief, whether you claim the specifics or not.

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