• Arbaeen Walk Photo Exhibition
  • The Third
  • Arbaeen Walk Photo Exhibition

    The Arbaeen Walk is the World's Largest Annual Peaceful Gathering held every year in the holy city of Karbala, Iraq. Millions of people take part in a commemoration of the Prophet Mohammad's grandson Hussain ibn Ali's martyrdom. Toheed Society of Montreal in cooperation with Thaqalayn Muslim Association (TMA) is going to hold a photography exhibition of the Arbaeen Walk to show how people stand for social justice, honor and peace. Our photos include various cultural backgrounds, religions, and health conditions.

     

    ✅ Come and visit our photos that you never see in media!

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  • Tanhavash Wildlife Documentary Screening

    The screening of Tanhavash wildlife documentary took place on Saturday, November 25th 2017. Montreal Toheed Society, in collaboration with WWF McGill Student Club, Sierra Club Quebec and McGill Wildlife Association (MWA), hosted the screening at Concordia University. 

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  • The Third "Street Store"

    Montreal Toheed Society is proud to hold its third Street Store initiative to offer help to the needy during the cold winter of Montreal.

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Hadith-Imam Ali’s will to his son Hasan

Imam Ali’s will to his son Hasan

Part ELEVEN

وَ اعْلَمْ يَا بُنَيَّ أَنَّ أَحَداً لَمْ يُنْبِئْ عَنِ اللَّهِ سُبْحَانَهُ كَمَا أَنْبَأَ عَنْهُ الرَّسُولُ (صلّی الله عليه و آله)، فَارْضَ بِهِ رَائِداً وَ إِلَى النَّجَاةِ قَائِداً؛ فَإِنِّي لَمْ آلُكَ نَصِيحَةً؛ وَ إِنَّكَ لَنْ تَبْلُغَ فِي النَّظَرِ لِنَفْسِكَ وَ إِنِ اجْتَهَدْتَ مَبْلَغَ نَظَرِي لَكَ.

وَ اعْلَمْ يَا بُنَيَّ أَنَّهُ لَوْ كَانَ لِرَبِّكَ شَرِيكٌ لَأَتَتْكَ رُسُلُهُ، وَ لَرَأَيْتَ آثَارَ مُلْكِهِ وَ سُلْطَانِهِ، وَ لَعَرَفْتَ أَفْعَالَهُ وَ صِفَاتِهِ، وَ لَكِنَّهُ إِلَهٌ وَاحِدٌ كَمَا وَصَفَ نَفْسَهُ: لَا يُضَادُّهُ فِي مُلْكِهِ أَحَدٌ، وَ لَا يَزُولُ أَبَداً وَ لَمْ يَزَلْ، أَوَّلٌ قَبْلَ الْأَشْيَاءِ بِلَا أَوَّلِيَّةٍ، وَ آخِرٌ بَعْدَ الْأَشْيَاءِ بِلَا نِهَايَةٍ، عَظُمَ [عَنْ] أَنْ تَثْبُتَ رُبُوبِيَّتُهُ بِإِحَاطَةِ قَلْبٍ أَوْ بَصَرٍ. فَإِذَا عَرَفْتَ ذَلِكَ فَافْعَلْ كَمَا يَنْبَغِي لِمِثْلِكَ أَنْ يَفْعَلَهُ فِي صِغَرِ خَطَرِهِ وَ قِلَّةِ مَقْدِرَتِهِ وَ كَثْرَةِ عَجْزِهِ و عَظِيمِ حَاجَتِهِ إِلَى رَبِّهِ، فِي طَلَبِ طَاعَتِهِ وَ الْخَشْيَةِ [وَ الرَّهْبَةِ] مِنْ عُقُوبَتِهِ، وَ الشَّفَقَةِ مِنْ سُخْطِهِ، فَإِنَّهُ لَمْ يَأْمُرْكَ إِلَّا بِحَسَنٍ، وَ لَمْ يَنْهَكَ إِلَّا عَنْ قَبِيحٍ.

Know, O my son, that no one has reported about God, Glorified is He, as His Messenger has done (peace be upon him and his family). So be pleased with him as a guide and leader toward salvation. Indeed I do not spare you any advice, and no matter how much you try you will never be able to discern your welfare as I discern it for you. 

Know, O my son, that if your Lord had a partner, then surely his messengers would have come to you, you would have certainly seen the signs of his sovereignty and dominion, and you would have indeed recognized his actions and attributes. However, He is the only god, as He has described Himself. No one can oppose Him in His sovereignty. He has always been, and shall always be. He is the First: before everything and without having a beginning; and He is the Last: after everything and without having an end. He is far greater than having His Lordship proven by the encompassment of any heart or eye. So now that you know this, you should behave as it befits someone like you—one of petty status, little power, great weakness, and immense need to his Lord—to behave: to seek His obedience, fear His punishment, and dread His wrath. For indeed He has not commanded you except to good, and has not forbidden you except of evil.

666

Part TEN

فَتَفَهَّمْ يَا بُنَيَّ وَصِيَّتِي، وَ اعْلَمْ أَنَّ مَالِكَ الْمَوْتِ هُوَ مَالِكُ الْحَيَاةِ، وَ أَنَّ الْخَالِقَ هُوَ الْمُمِيتُ، وَ أَنَّ الْمُفْنِيَ هُوَ الْمُعِيدُ، وَ أَنَّ الْمُبْتَلِيَ هُوَ الْمُعَافِي، وَ أَنَّ الدُّنْيَا لَمْ تَكُنْ لِتَسْتَقِرَّ إِلَّا عَلَى مَا جَعَلَهَا اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ مِنَ النَّعْمَاءِ وَ الِابْتِلَاءِ، وَ الْجَزَاءِ فِي الْمَعَادِ، أَوْ مَا شَاءَ مِمَّا لَا تَعْلَمُ [نَعْلَمُ]. فَإِنْ أَشْكَلَ عَلَيْكَ شَيْ‏ءٌ مِنْ ذَلِكَ فَاحْمِلْهُ عَلَى جَهَالَتِكَ، فَإِنَّكَ أَوَّلُ مَا خُلِقْتَ بِهِ جَاهِلاً  ثُمَّ عُلِّمْتَ، وَ مَا أَكْثَرَ مَا تَجْهَلُ مِنَ الْأَمْرِ، وَ يَتَحَيَّرُ فِيهِ رَأْيُكَ، وَ يَضِلُّ فِيهِ بَصَرُكَ، ثُمَّ تُبْصِرُهُ بَعْدَ ذَلِكَ. فَاعْتَصِمْ بِالَّذِي‏ خَلَقَكَ وَ رَزَقَكَ وَ سَوَّاكَ: [فَلْيَكُنْ‏] وَ لْيَكُنْ لَهُ تَعَبُّدُكَ، وَ إِلَيْهِ رَغْبَتُكَ، وَ مِنْهُ شَفَقَتُكَ.

So try to grasp my will, O my son. Know that indeed the Possessor of death is the same as the Possessor of life; the Giver of death is the same as the Creator; the Restorer is the same as the Annihilator; and the Recoverer [of afflictions] is the same as the One Who sends afflictions. Indeed this word will only subsist on what God has based it on: pleasure and pain, and then retribution [to follow] in the Hereafter—or whatever He has willed beyond your [our] ken. Now, if something does not make sense to you in this regard [i.e. concerning what is said in this will, or concerning God’s creation and the affairs of this world], then attribute it to your ignorance, for indeed you were born ignorant at first, and you were taught later on. Likewise, there are many affairs that you do not know [yet], in which your mind is puzzled and your view is baffled, but you will see them later on. Hence, hold fast to the One Who created you, provided for you, and proportioned you: your service shall be unto Him [alone], your zeal shall be directed at Him [alone], and your fear shall be of Him [alone].

 

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Part NINE

 

فَإِنْ أَبَتْ نَفْسُكَ أَنْ تَقْبَلَ ذَلِكَ دُونَ أَنْ تَعْلَمَ كَمَا عَلِمُوا، فَلْيَكُنْ طَلَبُكَ ذَلِكَ بِتَفَهُّمٍ وَ تَعَلُّمٍ، لَا بِتَوَرُّطِ الشُّبُهَاتِ، وَ عُلَقِ الْخُصُومَاتِ. وَ ابْدَأْ قَبْلَ نَظَرِكَ فِي ذَلِكَ بِالاسْتِعَانَةِ بِإِلَهِكَ، وَ الرَّغْبَةِ إِلَيْهِ فِي تَوْفِيقِكَ، وَ تَرْكِ كُلِّ شَائِبَةٍ أَوْلَجَتْكَ فِي شُبْهَةٍ، أَوْ أَسْلَمَتْكَ إِلَى ضَلَالَةٍ. فَإِنْ أَيْقَنْتَ أَنْ قَدْ صَفَا قَلْبُكَ فَخَشَعَ، وَ تَمَّ رَأْيُكَ فَاجْتَمَعَ، وَ كَانَ هَمُّكَ فِي ذَلِكَ هَمّاً وَاحِداً، فَانْظُرْ فِيمَا فَسَّرْتُ لَكَ. وَ إِنْ [أَنْتَ‏] لَمْ يَجْتَمِعْ لَكَ مَا تُحِبُّ مِنْ نَفْسِكَ، وَ فَرَاغِ نَظَرِكَ وَ فِكْرِكَ، فَاعْلَمْ أَنَّكَ إِنَّمَا تَخْبِطُ الْعَشْوَاءَ وَ تَتَوَرَّطُ الظَّلْمَاءَ، وَ لَيْسَ طَالِبُ الدِّينِ مَنْ خَبَطَ أَوْ خَلَطَ، وَ الْإِمْسَاكُ عَنْ ذَلِكَ أَمْثَلُ.

 

Now, should your nafs (self, soul, ego) refuse to accept this [conclusion of theirs] without reaching it for itself, then your search for it should be a quest for understanding and knowledge, without being caught up in doubts or carried away by quarrels. But before you probe into this search [for knowledge], start with seeking help from your God, turning to Him to make you succeed, and leaving behind anything that might put you in doubt or deliver you to misguidance. Once you have made sure that your heart is cleared [from impurities] and humbled, that your mind is gathered and focused, and that you are determined with a single objective in this regard [to seek the truth], then reflect upon what I have explained for you [in this will]. But if you do not find what you want from your soul [i.e. humbleness] gathered with peace of mind and clarity of thought, then know that you would only be straying like a night-blind camel, and you would only be falling into darkness. However, a seeker of religion [i.e. religious truth] is not one who strays or mixes up [truth and untruth]. Then it is better to withhold from this quest [for knowledge] to begin with.

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Part EIGHT

ثُمَّ أَشْفَقْتُ أَنْ يَلْتَبِسَ عَلَيْكَ مَا اخْتَلَفَ النَّاسُ فِيهِ مِنْ أَهْوَائِهِمْ وَ آرَائِهِمْ مِثْلَ الَّذِي الْتَبَسَ عَلَيْهِمْ، فَكَانَ إِحْكَامُ ذَلِكَ عَلَى مَا كَرِهْتُ مِنْ تَنْبِيهِكَ لَهُ أَحَبَّ إِلَيَّ مِنْ إِسْلَامِكَ إِلَى أَمْرٍ لَا آمَنُ عَلَيْكَ بِهِ [فِيهِ‏] الْهَلَكَةَ، وَ رَجَوْتُ أَنْ يُوَفِّقَكَ اللَّهُ فِيهِ لِرُشْدِكَ، وَ أَنْ يَهْدِيَكَ لِقَصْدِكَ، فَعَهِدْتُ إِلَيْكَ وَصِيَّتِي هَذِهِ. وَ اعْلَمْ يَا بُنَيَّ أَنَّ أَحَبَّ مَا أَنْتَ آخِذٌ بِهِ إِلَيَّ مِنْ وَصِيَّتِي تَقْوَى اللَّهِ، وَ الِاقْتِصَارُ عَلَى مَا فَرَضَهُ اللَّهُ عَلَيْكَ، وَ الْأَخْذُ بِمَا مَضَى عَلَيْهِ الْأَوَّلُونَ مِنْ آبَائِكَ وَ الصَّالِحُونَ مِنْ أَهْلِ بَيْتِكَ، فَإِنَّهُمْ لَمْ يَدَعُوا أَنْ نَظَرُوا لِأَنْفُسِهِمْ كَمَا أَنْتَ نَاظِرٌ، وَ فَكَّرُوا كَمَا أَنْتَ مُفَكِّرٌ، ثُمَّ رَدَّهُمْ آخِرُ ذَلِكَ إِلَى الْأَخْذِ بِمَا عَرَفُوا وَ الْإِمْسَاكِ عَمَّا لَمْ يُكَلَّفُوا.

But then I feared that you may be confused by the opposing opinions and desires of the people just as they have been confused. Therefore, despite my reluctance to inform you of these [different opinions and desires], I prefer to clarify them for you rather than leaving you to face certain affairs that I am afraid might be fatal to you. I hope that God may assist you to reach your rectitude in these affairs, and to guide you to your straight path. That is why I have charged you with this will of mine.

Know, my son, that the dearest things to me that can take from my will are: to be wary of God, to confine yourself to what God has made incumbent upon you, and to take up what your forefathers and the righteous in your family followed. Indeed, they did not neglect to reflect upon their good just as you reflect [upon yours], and they contemplated [about their affairs] just as you contemplate [about yours]. Then their reflection and contemplation led them to hold fast to what they realized [to be right, or to be their duty], and to refrain from what they were not assigned to do.

 


Part SEVEN

أَيْ بُنَيَّ إِنِّي وَ إِنْ لَمْ أَكُنْ عُمِّرْتُ عُمُرَ مَنْ كَانَ قَبْلِي، فَقَدْ نَظَرْتُ فِي أَعْمَالِهِمْ، وَ فَكَّرْتُ فِي أَخْبَارِهِمْ، وَ سِرْتُ فِي آثَارِهِمْ، حَتَّى عُدْتُ كَأَحَدِهِمْ. بَلْ كَأَنِّي بِمَا انْتَهَى إِلَيَّ مِنْ أُمُورِهِمْ قَدْ عُمِّرْتُ مَعَ أَوَّلِهِمْ إِلَى آخِرِهِمْ. فَعَرَفْتُ صَفْوَ ذَلِكَ مِنْ كَدَرِهِ، وَ نَفْعَهُ مِنْ ضَرَرِهِ، فَاسْتَخْلَصْتُ لَكَ مِنْ كُلِّ أَمْرٍ نَخِيلَهُ [جَلِيلَهُ‏]، وَ تَوَخَّيْتُ لَكَ جَمِيلَهُ، وَ صَرَفْتُ عَنْكَ مَجْهُولَهُ. وَ رَأَيْتُ حَيْثُ عَنَانِي مِنْ أَمْرِكَ مَا يَعْنِي الْوَالِدَ الشَّفِيقَ، وَ أَجْمَعْتُ عَلَيْهِ مِنْ أَدَبِكَ، أَنْ يَكُونَ ذَلِكَ وَ أَنْتَ مُقْبِلُ الْعُمُرِ وَ مُقْتَبَلُ الدَّهْرِ: ذُو نِيَّةٍ سَلِيمَةٍ وَ نَفْسٍ صَافِيَةٍ؛ وَ أَنْ أَبْتَدِئَكَ بِتَعْلِيمِ كِتَابِ اللَّهِ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ وَ تَأْوِيلِهِ، وَ شَرَائِعِ الْإِسْلَامِ وَ أَحْكَامِهِ وَ حَلَالِهِ وَ حَرَامِهِ، [وَ] لَا أُجَاوِزُ ذَلِكَ بِكَ إِلَى غَيْرِهِ.

My son! Even though I did not live the time of those who were before me, I have reflected on their actions, have contemplated their stories, and have visited their [ruined] remnants, to the point that I became like one of them. Rather, based on what has reached mea about their affairs, it is as though I have lived with them from the very first to the very last. This enabled me to discern the pure thereof from the impure [of their actions and affairs], and what is beneficial from what is harmful. Thus, I have sifted out the choicest [or greatest] of every affair for you, have picked the most beautiful parts for you, and have turned away what is obscure there from you. Since I found myself to be concerned with your affairs as a compassionate father, I determined to discipline you while you are at an early age with a life in front of you, and while you have a sincere intention and a pure soul. And I decided to begin [your discipline] by teaching you the Book of God, Mighty and Majestic is He, along with its interpretation, the laws and rules of Islam, and what is lawful and unlawful, without taking you on digressions to other topics.

 

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Part SIX

 

أَيْ بُنَيَّ إِنِّي لَمَّا رَأَيْتُنِي قَدْ بَلَغْتُ سِنّاً وَ رَأَيْتُنِي أَزْدَادُ وَهْناً، بَادَرْتُ بِوَصِيَّتِي إِلَيْكَ، وَ أَوْرَدْتُ خِصَالاً مِنْهَا، قَبْلَ أَنْ يَعْجَلَ بِي أَجَلِي دُونَ أَنْ أُفْضِيَ إِلَيْكَ بِمَا فِي نَفْسِي، أَوْ أَنْ أُنْقَصَ فِي رَأْيِي كَمَا نُقِصْتُ فِي جِسْمِي، أَوْ يَسْبِقَنِي إِلَيْكَ بَعْضُ غَلَبَاتِ الْهَوَى وَ فِتَنِ الدُّنْيَا، فَتَكُونَ كَالصَّعْبِ النَّفُورِ. وَ إِنَّمَا قَلْبُ الْحَدَثِ كَالْأَرْضِ الْخَالِيَةِ: مَا أُلْقِيَ فِيهَا مِنْ شَيْ‏ءٍ قَبِلَتْهُ. فَبَادَرْتُكَ بِالْأَدَبِ قَبْلَ أَنْ يَقْسُوَ قَلْبُكَ، وَ يَشْتَغِلَ لُبُّكَ، لِتَسْتَقْبِلَ بِجِدِّ رَأْيِكَ، مِنَ الْأَمْرِ مَا قَدْ كَفَاكَ أَهْلُ التَّجَارِبِ بُغْيَتَهُ وَ تَجْرِبَتَهُ، فَتَكُونَ قَدْ كُفِيتَ مَئُونَةَ الطَّلَبِ، وَ عُوفِيتَ مِنْ عِلَاجِ التَّجْرِبَةِ، فَأَتَاكَ مِنْ ذَلِكَ مَا قَدْ كُنَّا نَأْتِيهِ، وَ اسْتَبَانَ لَكَ مَا رُبَّمَا أَظْلَمَ عَلَيْنَا مِنْهُ.

 

My son, indeed as I found myself reaching old age and increasing in weakness, I hastened to write my will to you and set forth some moral advices for you, lest my death rushes to me while I have not imparted to you what I have in my heart; lest my mind deteriorates as my body has deteriorated; and lest you are overtaken by some overwhelming desires and tribulations of this world, for that would make you like an intractable stampeded animal [i.e. you would not give ear to my advice]. Indeed the heart of a youth is like an empty land: it accepts any seed that is cast upon it. So I hastened to discipline you before your heart hardens and your mind becomes preoccupied [with other affairs], that you may with a resolute mind receive the results of what experienced individuals have sought and tried before you. This way you are sufficed the trouble of seeking them on your own, and you are spared from examining them yourself. Hence, what we used to pursue would readily come to you, and things that might have been obscure to us would become evident to you.

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Part FIVE

وَ عَوِّدْ نَفْسَكَ التَّصَبُّرَ [الصَّبْرَ] عَلَى الْمَكْرُوهِ، وَ نِعْمَ الْخُلُقُ التَّصَبُرُ فِي الْحَقِّ. وَ أَلْجِئْ نَفْسَكَ فِي أُمُورِكَ كُلِّهَا إِلَى إِلَهِكَ، فَإِنَّكَ تُلْجِئُهَا إِلَى كَهْفٍ حَرِيزٍ وَ مَانِعٍ عَزِيزٍ. وَ أَخْلِصْ فِي الْمَسْأَلَةِ لِرَبِّكَ، فَإِنَّ بِيَدِهِ الْعَطَاءَ وَ الْحِرْمَانَ، وَ أَكْثِرِ الِاسْتِخَارَةَ. وَ تَفَهَّمْ وَصِيَّتِي، وَ لَا تَذْهَبَنَّ عَنْهَا [عَنْكَ] صَفْحاً، فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الْقَوْلِ مَا نَفَعَ، وَ اعْلَمْ أَنَّهُ لَا خَيْرَ فِي عِلْمٍ لَا يَنْفَعُ، وَ لَا يُنْتَفَعُ بِعِلْمٍ لَا يَحِقُّ تَعَلُّمُهُ.

Accustom yourself to forbear hardships; it is such a virtue to have forbearance in the cause of the truth. Entrust yourself to your God in all of your affairs, for you would thus be entrusting it to a secure shelter and a mighty protector. Make your requests only from your Lord, for indeed it is only up to Him to give or deprive. Entreat [God] for what is best for you [or what is your good] frequently. Try to comprehend my will, and do not take it lightly [or do not let it pass by you indifferently], for indeed the best speech is that which is beneficial. Know that there is no good in a knowledge that is of no benefit, and one does not benefit from a knowledge that is forbidden to acquire [or a knowledge that is not worthy of learning].

 

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Part FOUR

وَ دَعِ الْقَوْلَ فِيمَا لَا تَعْرِفُ، وَ الْخِطَابَ فِيمَا لَمْ تُكَلَّفْ. وَ أَمْسِكْ عَنْ طَرِيقٍ إِذَا خِفْتَ ضَلَالَتَهُ، فَإِنَّ الْكَفَّ عِنْدَ حَيْرَةِ الضَّلَالِ خَيْرٌ مِنْ رُكُوبِ الْأَهْوَالِ. وَ أْمُرْ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ تَكُنْ مِنْ أَهْلِهِ، وَ أَنْكِرِ الْمُنْكَرَ بِيَدِكَ وَ لِسَانِكَ، وَ بَايِنْ مَنْ فَعَلَهُ بِجُهْدِكَ. وَ جَاهِدْ فِي اللَّهِ حَقَّ جِهَادِهِ، وَ لَا تَأْخُذْكَ فِي اللَّه‏ لَوْمَةُ لَائِمٍ. وَ خُضِ الْغَمَرَاتِ لِلْحَقِّ [إِلَى الْحَقِ‏] حَيْثُ كَانَ، وَ تَفَقَّهْ فِي الدِّينِ.

Abstain from speaking about what you do not know, or addressing what is not incumbent upon you. Keep away from a path that you fear might lead you astray, for indeed having restraint when one is uncertain about the truth is better than embarking on dangers. Enjoin good, and you will become a doer thereof. Denounce evil by your limbs and your tongue, and part from those who commit it as much as you can. Struggle for God, a struggle that He deserves, and let not the reproach of any reproacher withhold you from God’s cause. Plunge in overwhelming difficulties for the cause of the truth wherever it might be. Have deep insight in religion.

 

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 Part THREE

فَإِنِّي أُوصِيكَ بِتَقْوَى اللَّهِ [أَيْ بُنَيَّ]، وَ لُزُومِ أَمْرِهِ، وَ عِمَارَةِ قَلْبِكَ بِذِكْرِهِ، وَ الِاعْتِصَامِ بِحَبْلِهِ، وَ أَيُّ سَبَبٍ أَوْثَقُ مِنْ سَبَبٍ بَيْنَكَ وَ بَيْنَ اللَّهِ إِنْ أَنْتَ أَخَذْتَ بِهِ؟

أَحْيِ قَلْبَكَ بِالْمَوْعِظَةِ، وَ أَمِتْهُ بِالزَّهَادَةِ، وَ قَوِّهِ بِالْيَقِينِ، وَ نَوِّرْهُ بِالْحِكْمَةِ، وَ ذَلِّلْهُ بِذِكْرِ الْمَوْتِ، وَ قَرِّرْهُ بِالْفَنَاءِ، وَ بَصِّرْهُ فَجَائِعَ الدُّنْيَا، وَ حَذِّرْهُ صَوْلَةَ الدَّهْرِ، وَ فُحْشَ تَقَلُّبِ اللَّيَالِي وَ الْأَيَّامِ، وَ اعْرِضْ عَلَيْهِ أَخْبَارَ الْمَاضِينَ، وَ ذَكِّرْهُ بِمَا أَصَابَ مَنْ كَانَ قَبْلَكَ مِنَ الْأَوَّلِينَ. وَ سِرْ فِي دِيَارِهِمْ وَ آثَارِهِمْ: فَانْظُرْ فِيمَا فَعَلُوا، وَ عَمَّا انْتَقَلُوا، وَ أَيْنَ حَلُّوا وَ نَزَلُوا؟ فَإِنَّكَ تَجِدُهُمْ قَدِ انْتَقَلُوا عَنِ الْأَحِبَّةِ، وَ حَلُّوا دِيَارَ [دَارَ] الْغُرْبَةِ، وَ كَأَنَّكَ عَنْ قَلِيلٍ قَدْ صِرْتَ كَأَحَدِهِمْ، فَأَصْلِحْ مَثْوَاكَ، وَ لَا تَبِعْ آخِرَتَكَ بِدُنْيَاكَ.

 

I advise you, my son, to be wary of God, to adhere to His commands, to keep your heart fresh with His remembrance, and to hold fast to His rope—because after all, which rope is more reliable than a rope between you and God to hold onto?

Make your heart live by [words of] admonition; make it die [to its greed and desires] by disinterestedness [in worldly pleasures and prospects]; strengthen it by certitude; illuminate it by wisdom; humble it [your heart] by remembering death; make it confess to [your] mortality; make it see the tragedies of this world; warn it against the assaults of this life and the unpleasant vicissitudes of the passing of nights and days; expose to it the stories of those who have passed away; and remind it of what struck your predecessors. Visit their [ruined] cities and remnants: observe what they did, where they departed from, and where they settled and descended? For indeed you will find that they left their loved ones behind, and [instead] settled in the abode of estrangement. And it will not be long before you become like one of them. So build your [eternal] abode, and do not sell your Hereafter to your world [i.e. your next life to this one].

 

 

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Part TWO

 

أَمَّا بَعْدُ، فَإِنَّ فِيمَا تَبَيَّنْتُ مِنْ إِدْبَارِ الدُّنْيَا عَنِّي وَ جُمُوحِ الدَّهْرِ عَلَيَّ وَ إِقْبَالِ الْآخِرَةِ إِلَيَّ مَا يَزَعُنِي [يُرَغِّبُنِي] عَنْ ذِكْرِ مَنْ سِوَايَ وَ الِاهْتِمَامِ بِمَا وَرَائِي، غَيْرَ أَنِّي حَيْثُ تَفَرَّدَ بِي دُونَ هُمُومِ النَّاسِ هَمُّ نَفْسِي، فَصَدَفَنِي [فَصَدَّقَنِي] رَأْيِي، وَ صَرَفَنِي عَنْ هَوَايَ، وَ صَرَّحَ لِي مَحْضَ [مَحْضُ] أَمْرِي، فَأَفْضَى بِي إِلَى جِدٍّ لَا يَكُونُ فِيهِ لَعِبٌ، وَ صِدْقٍ لَا يَشُوبُهُ كَذِبٌ، وَ وَجَدْتُكَ بَعْضِي بَلْ وَجَدْتُكَ كُلِّي، حَتَّى كَأَنَّ شَيْئاً لَوْ أَصَابَكَ أَصَابَنِي، وَ كَأَنَّ الْمَوْتَ لَوْ أَتَاكَ أَتَانِي. فَعَنَانِي‏ مِنْ أَمْرِكَ مَا يَعْنِينِي مِنْ أَمْرِ نَفْسِي. فَكَتَبْتُ إِلَيْكَ كِتَابِي [هَذَا] مُسْتَظْهِراً بِهِ إِنْ أَنَا بَقِيتُ لَكَ أَوْ فَنِيتُ.

 

Indeed what I have learnt from the turning away of this world from me, the onslaught of time over me, and the advance of the Hereafter toward me has held me back from [or has made me disinterested in] remembering anyone else or being concerned with anything beyond myself. But as this concern with myself completely absorbed me from being concerned with others, it kept me away from my personal opinion [or my reason confirmed me in this], it turned me away from my desires, and it clarified the reality of my affair to me. Thus, it led me to a serious issue in which there is no joke, and a truth that is not tainted with any falsehood. There I found you to be a part of me, rather to be my whole, such that if something happens to you it is as if it has happened to me, and if death comes to you it is as if though has come to me. Consequently, your affairs matter to me as my own affairs matter to me. So I wrote this letter for you to be a backing for me [against your desires, the tribulations of this world, or my death], whether I stay with you or I die.

 

 

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Part ONE

Sayyid al-Radi, the compiler of Nahj al-Balaghah says:

و من وصيةٍ له عليه السّلام للحسن بن علي عليهما السّلام، كتبها إليه بحاضرين مُنصرفاً مِن صِفِّينَ‏.

مِنَ الْوَالِدِ الْفَانِ، الْمُقِرِّ لِلزَّمَانِ، الْمُدْبِرِ الْعُمُرِ، الْمُسْتَسْلِمِ لِلدَّهْرِ، الذَّامِ‏ لِلدُّنْيَا، السَّاكِنِ مَسَاكِنَ الْمَوْتَى، وَ الظَّاعِنِ عَنْهَا غَداً؛ إِلَى الْمَوْلُودِ الْمُؤَمِّلِ مَا لَا يُدْرِكُ، السَّالِكِ سَبِيلَ مَنْ قَدْ هَلَكَ، غَرَضِ الْأَسْقَامِ، وَ رَهِينَةِ الْأَيَّامِ، وَ رَمِيَّةِ الْمَصَائِبِ، وَ عَبْدِ الدُّنْيَا، وَ تَاجِرِ الْغُرُورِ، وَ غَرِيمِ الْمَنَايَا، وَ أَسِيرِ الْمَوْتِ، وَ حَلِيفِ الْهُمُومِ، وَ قَرِينِ الْأَحْزَانِ، وَ نُصُبِ الْآفَاتِ، وَ صَرِيعِ الشَّهَوَاتِ، وَ خَلِيفَةِ الْأَمْوَاتِ.

 

This is the Imam’s will to his son al-Hasan ibn Ali (peace be upon him), which he wrote in Hadirayn in his return from [the Battle of] Siffin.

{Note: Siffin is a place near a city called Riqqah, which is about 200 km from Aleppo in Syria. It is the place where the Battle of Siffin took place. Today it hosts the graves of the martyrs of that Battle such as Uways al-Qarani and ‘Ammar ibn Yasir.}

 [This is a will] from a father who is [shortly] to die, who admits the passing of time, whose days have come to an end, who has submitted to the course of life, who disparages this world, who is residing in the houses of the dead, and is due to depart from them tomorrow.

To a son who has hopes that he will never achieve, who is treading the path of those who have perished, who is subject to ailments, who is a hostage to his days, who is a target of calamities, who is a slave of this world, who is a trader of deception, who is a debtor to the means of mortality, who is a captive of death, who is an ally of worries, who is a companion of sorrows, who is surrounded by defects, who is a victim of lusts, and who is a successor of the dead.