The Role of the Ideology in Identifying Man To Himself

It is doubtless that the ideology –through its sources and symbols-played a big role in disclosing the nature of the self and specified very precisely its diseases and the effects ensued from them.

The Holy Qur’an states explicitly that the soul orders one (its holder) to commit evil: “I do not declare myself free of sin, most surely man’s self is wont to command (him to do) evil except such s my Lord had mercy on.” [^59]

Qur’an also states frankly that the human spirit is stingy Allah (be exalted) says “And avarice souls has been made to be presented in the people’s minds”[^60]. He also says: “Whoever is preserved from the niggardliness of his soul, these it is that are the successful ones.” [^61]

There is a group of “hadeeths” which shed light on the nature of human self and recommend the remedial viewpoint to its diseases, some of them is what Imam wrote to Al-Ashter Alnekhaei when he appointed him as a governor of Egypt, it is stated: “He has ordered him to resist his lusts, to curb his self at its caprices as the “man’s soul is wont to command him to commit evils except such as Allah Had mercy…”[^62]

A sermon of his (A.S.) which included recommendations to people, says: “We depend on His help to tame these souls which slacken to perform what they are ordered to perform, and which hasten to commit what they are forbidden to do…” [^63]

He (A.S.) also says: “The self is disposed to bad manners, the servant is ordered to keep to courtesy, the self naturally runs into the field of disobedience, the servant strives to keep it from its evil demands, so when he gives it the full reins he is a partner in its corruption; and he who helps himself to follow the wishes of his self he has participated in killing himself” [^64]

On this level, it is worth mentioning that when the psychological disease, are not treated, they result in very dangerous consequences. For example the big confusion, which took place in “Alsakeefa” for Moslems, when the legal leadership was excluded from the center of determination, had psychological roots. It is enough here to recite the speech of Ameeralmu’amineen (A.S.) to one of his companions when he asked him: how did your people drive you back of this authority (leader ship) while you are more entitled to it?

“As to taking exclusive possession of this position while we are the more sublime in decency and the most associated with the prophet of Allah, it has been an egoism the souls of some people have refrained while the souls of others have overlooked it generously, and Allah is the Judge” [^65]

So the egoism which has been concealed in the souls of some people has been the reason of the first and the most dangerous deviation which the Islamic movement witnessed some hours after the prophet’s demise, therefore in spite of their achieved infallibility, Imams of Ahlilbait (A.S.) were seeking a refuge with Allah (be exalted) by supplications invoking Him to protect them from this dangerous psychological disease.

It is related from Alfazel Ebna Abi Karrah said: I saw Abbaabdullah (A.S.) circumambulating since the beginning of night till the dawn saying: “O my Lord’ protect me from egoism of my soul” I said: may I be a sacrifice for you, I have not heard you reciting other than this supplication?

He said: which thing is worse than egoism? Allah (be exalted) says: “And whoever is preserved from the niggardliness of his soul these it is that are the successful ones” [^66]


The procedure of the ideology in educating the self is that it does not call for suppressing its wishes because repressing kills its activity and scatter its energies. So it doesn’t work and doesn’t produce. At the same time the Islamic ideology doesn’t urge to release its wishes without restraints; rather it urges on following a wise policy with it. Ameeralmu’amineen (A.S.) says: “The best administering is administering the self”[^67]

The operation of taking control over the self can be achieved through controlling its wishes and directing her caprices towards moderation. It is also achieved through calling it to account, the Imam Mousa Ibna Ja’afar says: “He is not of us who doesn’t call his self to account once a day; so when he did good he asks Allah to increase it and when he did evil, he asks Allah’s forgiveness and repents to Him” [^68]

We must point out that the Islamic ideology does not recommend the crooked manners to control the self; it is narrated from Talha, that he said: A person one day went out and took his clothes out, wallowed in scorching heat saying to himself: Taste, the torture of Hell is hotter, are you satisfied with your state as a carrion at night and idleness at day?! He said: As that man was in that state the prophet (S.W.A.) saw him and came to him, he said:

My self has over powered me, the prophet (S.W.A.) said to him: “Hasn’t there been any other way except what you have done?” [^69]

From this direction we know that at the time which the Islamic ideology urges every truthful attempt of man to take control over his self we also find that it doesn’t recommend the un rational manners to control the self, as the soul needs patience and a lasting policy, and a special training in order to refrain from its brutal habits like that training which Ameeralmu’amineen (A.S.) swore to follow with his self… “I swear by Allah a swearing excluding by it Allah’s will only-I will train myself a training with which it is satisfied with a loaf of bread as a food staff and salt to be her condiment…”[^70]

One really becomes over whelmed with Imam’s ability to control his self although funds were levied to him from different countries of the Islamic Caliphate during his Caliphate years, he (A.S.) had lived up to his oath.

It is narrated from Habbat Al Arneei that he said: a plate of “Falouzag” (i- e a kind of sweet) was brought to Ameeralmu’amineen (A.S.). He saw its purity and taste; he put his finger in it till it reached its bottom then he drew it without taking any of it then he smacked his finger and said: “The “Halaal” is tasteful, it is not “Haraam” but I don’t like to habituate myself to what I haven’t habituated it, lift it up” they lifted it up”[^71]

He was putting the grouts of barley in a plate and locked it up, he was asked about that he (A.S.) replied: “I fear those two boys may put something of oil or butter in it” [^72]


We can emphasize that there are two opposite lines in man’s soul. The Islamic ideology takes to both lines scattering every false fear and every deviated hope instead it grows the fear of Allah from one side and the hope of his reward from the other side Allah has said: “Fearing of the hereafter and hopes for the mercy of his Lord”[^73]. Its view is not one –sided such as concentrating on the side of fear, and consequently man becomes despaired of Allah’s mercy, or concentrates- on the opposite- on hope so it weakens in man’s soul the fear of Allah.

The prophet (S.W.A.) says: “If you know the vastness of Allah’s mercy you will depend on it and you will not do but little, and if you know the extent of Allah’s anger you assume that you will not be saved” [^74]

His executor Imam Ali (A.S.) says: If you can have a grave bear of Allah and a good assumption of Allah, so you do comprise between them, as the servant’s good assumption of his creator is to be the amount of his fear of Him, best person in his good assumption of Allah is him whose fear from Allah is greater” [^75]

[^76] It worthies mentioning that people in their natures and behavior differ very much, so it is wise to take into consideration the best way in guiding and ushering them using hope and frightening. For some of them can be reformed by hope they are the regretted disobedient who have exceed in committing sins, and they are trying to return to Allah through penitence yet they have become disappointed of Allah’s pardon because of the enormity of their crimes and the plentiness of their sins, so, in this state, their despair is treated with the hope in Allah’s generosity and the wideness of his mercy and forgiveness.

“As to those who are reformed by frightening: they are the mutinous disobedients who are engrossed in committing sins, conceited with hope, so their treatment is by frightening and violent checking, by threatening them of the painful chastisement and the disgraceful torture that waits them.” [^77]

The followers of the School of “Ahlilbait” whose souls were inhabited by Allah’s fear and reflected on their organs, and that His hope grew up in their hearts, had the most excellent examples. “It is narrated that Abbi-Zaar had cried due to fear of Allah till he suffered of his eyes. Then it is said to him: would you appeal to Allah to heal your eyes?! He replied: I am busy from that and it is not my major concern. They said: what busied you from it? He said the two great things, Paradise and Hell” [^78]

From another side the heralds of his divine School strengthen the feeling of hope in the souls. It is stated in some of Ali’s recommendations (A.S.) his son Al-Hassan (A.S.): “O my son, do not drive a sinful person to despair, so many a sin committer had a good end and so many people were practicing a good deed at the end of their age, would go to Hell may Allah save us from it”.[^79]

[^1] Alseerah Alnabaweiah, Abbilfeda’a: 2:420 Dar alreaed Alarabi edition: 3.

[^2] Albakarah: 2: 216.

[^3] Nahjilbalaaghah, Subhi Al-Salih: 378-Kitaab 22.

[^4] Fusseilat: 41: 49.

[^5] Hood: 11: 9.

[^6] Yousif: 12- 87.

[^7] Nahj Al-Balagha, Subhi Al-Saleh, p. 349.

[^8] Nahjil balaaghah, Subhel Saleh: 534.

[^9] Nehjil balaghah: Subhi Alsaalih: Sermon 103, p. 148

[^10] Nehjil balagha: 310.

[^11] Sinan Al-Turmuzi 4: 508/ 2377, CH. 44-Daar alfikr edition 1408. A.H.

[^12] Nehjelbalagha: Subhi Alsaalih: 167/ sermon 113.

[^13] Ershaadel quloob: Aldailemi: 1- 30, Alrezi publications, Qom.

[^14] Tenbeehilkhawaatir: Ameer Warram: 1: 79, baab Aleitaab.

[^15] Aalaam Aldeen: Aldailemi: 278.

[^16] Behaarelanwaar 82: 122- from Mussakin Alfuaad

[^17] Behaarel Anwaar 82: 123 from Meshkaatel anwaar: 280.

[^18] Rawzatel Waeezeen; Fattaal Alneishabouri: 489

[^19] Alkaafi: Alkulaini 3: 262/ 42: baab alnawaadir.

[^20] Aal Aumraan 3: 185.

[^21] Alnesa’a 4: 78.

[^22] Alahzaab 33: 16.

[^23] Aalaumraan: 3:145.

[^24] Aljuma’aa 62: 6-7.

[^25] Nehjilbalagha, Subhi Alsaalih 81/ sermon 38.

[^26] Tenbeehil Khawaatir, Ameer Warraam 1-2/ 268/ baab Zekrelmawt.

[^27] Ma’ani Alakhbaar: Alsadouq: 288, Jama’at Almuderriseen, edition of 1379 h.

[^28] Nehjilbalagha, short hekam/ 175.

[^29] Ma’ani Alakhbaar, Al-Sadouq: 290.

[^30] Auyoun Akhbaar Alreza, Ebin babawaih 2: 248 Ala’alemi foundation edition: 1.

[^31] Rawzatel Waaeizeen, Alfattal Alneeisaabouri 486, in remembering death.

[^32] Tenbeehilkhawaatir 1: 269.

[^33] Alkhesaal Alsadouq 2: 616, the hadeth of 400.

[^34] Nehjilbalagha 400: letter 31.

[^35] Rawzatelwaeizeen: 490.

[^36] Alzaareiat 51: 58.

[^37] Alesra’a: 17: 31.

[^38] Rawzatelwaaeizeen, Alfattaal Alneeshaabouri 2: 454.

[^39] Nehjilbalagha, subhi Alssaalih 124/ sermon 91.

[^40] Alershaad: Sheikh Almufeed: 160, Beseeretilibrary, Qom.

[^41] Alkaafi 5: 74/ 2

[^42] sherh Alnahag 1:7.

[^43] Akhlaaq Ahlilbait, Sayyed M.Alsadre: 143 Darel Ketaab Aleslaami.

[^44] Nehjil balagha 551, wisdom 426.

[^45] Thawaabila’amaal waekaabila’amaal, sheikh Alsadouk, 228

[^46] the previous source, 230.

[^47] Ketaab Altawheed: sheikh alsadouq: 400: Alneshaleslaami-Qom.

[^48] The above sources: Sheikh alsadouq: 229, baab thawaab il maradh (disease).

[^49] Albedaayah walnahaayah: Ebnilatheer Aldimeskki 1: 254/ 1 Dar Ehya’a ilturaath 1408 edition 1.

[^50] Nehjilbalagha, Subhi Alsaalih: 526.

[^51] Alanaam 6: 15.

[^52] Alnaazeaat 79: 40-41.

[^53] Kenzelaummaal: 3: 148/ 5909.

[^54] Tuhafil aukoul: Ebin Shu’aba Alharraani: 28 Al’alami edit: 5th.

[^55] Ausoulil Kaafi 2: 68/4 ch. Fear and hop.

[^56] Alensaan 76: 8-10.

[^57] Tuhaf alaukool: 208.

[^58] Alhashr 59: 19.

[^59] Yousif 12: 53.

[^60] Alnessa’a: 4:128.

[^61] Alhashr 59: 9.

[^62] Nehjil balagha, Subhi Alsaalih: 427, letter 53.

[^63] Nehjilbalagha 169/ sermon 114.

[^64] Mizaan Alhikmah 1: 16, from Meshkaat el anwaar.

[^65] Nehjilbalaagha: 231.

[^66] Mizaanil Hikmah: 5: 33, from Noorel Thaqalain 5: 291.

[^67] Mizaanil Hikma 10: 134 from Ghurarel Hikam.

[^68] The morals of Ahlilbait sayed M. Alsadre : 351, Alwaafi 3: 62, from Alkaafi.

[^69] Almehajjah Albaiza’a: Almuhaquaq alkaashaani 8: 68, Ala’alami foundation edit: 2.

[^70] Nehjilbalagha: Subhi Alsaalih: 419.

[^71] Wassaaeil Alsheea’a 16: 508, Dar Ehiaaelturaath elarabi.

[^72] Wassaaeil Alsheea’a 16: 509.

[^73] Alzumer: 39: 9.

[^74] Kenzel Aumaal 3: 144/ 5894.

[^75] Nehjil Balagha: 384.

[^77] Akhlaaq Ahlilbait: Sayed M.Alsadre: 129, Dareketaabil Islaami.

[^78] Rawzatel Waaeizeen: 285, merits of Abbizar.

[^79] Tuhafil Aukoul: 66, Ala’alami foundation edit: 5.