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Back You are here: Home Ma'sumeen Ali Ibn Musa ar-Reza Biography of Imam Reza The Inheritor of the Holy Prophet's Virtues

The Inheritor of the Holy Prophet's Virtues

The Inheritor of the Holy Prophet’s Virtues


Know that the Holy Prophet (p.b.u.h) was an example of perfect conduct and moralities in his lifetime, and Allāh has commended his laudable disposition. Just like other holy immaculate Imams (AS), Imam Reza (AS) had also inherited the Holy Prophet’s virtues and behaviour.
EbrāhÄ«m Ibn ‘Abbās says: "I never saw Imam Reza (AS) doing injustice to others, or interrupt any one’s speech, or refuse to satisfy one’s need. His Holiness never stretched out his legs before others, nor did he show a sign of impoliteness in a public sitting. His Holiness used to eat food in the company of his servants.

Imām Reza (AS) was a man of vigilance at nights, and used to observe fasting thee days in a month. He gave alms in the dark of nights not to be seen by others.
Ibn AbÄ« ‘Ibād, Ma’moon’s vizier, says: "In summer time His Holiness Ali Ibn MÅ«sā(AS) used to sit on straw mats, and in winter he used rush-mats to sit on. In private, he used to put on coarse clothes while in public he wore simple and plain garments to avoid ostentation of abstinence.

Imam Reza's (AS) Behavior as Narrated in Some Traditions

His Holiness used to attend to the needy as much as possible.
He gave alms in secret in the dark of nights.
He used to eat food in the company of his servants.

To him no difference existed between the noble rich class and ordinary people. Piety was his only criterion in judgment. He was always smiling with a cheerful face. He used to give the best portion of his food to the hungry.
He used to sit with the poor and indigent people.
He used to participate in funeral processions.
He never called a servant who was busy eating food.

His Holiness never laughed loudly.
His Holiness preferred to solve others' problems before any other act.
The Holy Imām(AS) used to sit on straw mats.
He often recited the Holy Qur'an.
He never offended others with his oral words.

He never interrupted others' speech.
He did not stretch out his legs before others.
He did not lean back on wall before others.
His Holiness always remembered the name of Allāh on tongue.
He seriously avoided extravagance.

He generously helped the needy travelers.
He was diligent in giving food for breaking the others' fast.
He used to visit patients.
His Holiness used to receive and serve guests personally.

He never allowed people on food to rise on his entering.
He used to listen to others discourse with sharp ears.
He used to apply scents especially on performing daily prayers.
He was very attentive to body cleanliness and attire of his hair.
He used to wash hands before eating food, and did the same after.
He never wasted extra foods.

He did not eat all alone before others.
His Holiness was extraordinarily forbearing and patient.
He paid extra wages to the hired workmen.
He encountered others with kindness and a cheerful face.
His Holiness granted much to the indigent, regarding his charity as a saving for himself.

A Banquet and Its Rules

One night a banquet was held in Imām Reza’s home. Suddenly, the light started to flicker. The guest tried to help the Imām but the Imām prevented him and decided to do it himself and told him, “We are the people who do not cause our guests any trouble because they are too respectable to serve the host.”

The Rights of the Workers

Sulaimān Ja‘farÄ« says: In company with Imam Reza (AS), we two entered his house and saw men at work and a blackish labourer among them. The Holy Imām (AS) asked about the wage of that coloured fellow, and when His Holiness did not get a satisfying answer from his own servants, he got angry to an extent that he was going to punish them.

Then the Holy Imam(AS) admonished every body present there to fix the wage of a worker in advance, otherwise some troubles and misunderstanding will be created between the employer and the employee.

If you pay him threefold, he will suppose that have paid him less than he deserves. If you pay him what you agreed before, he will be thankful for it, and if you pay him more than what was agreed, he understands that you have paid him even more and appreciates it.
Wastefulness and Extravagance:

Yāsir Khādim(the attendant) says: one day the holy imām’s retainers threw away a half – eaten fruit, Imam Reza(AS) told them: “Glory be to Allāh! If you are needless of this half-eaten fruit, know that there are some people who are willing to have it. So give it to those who are in need of it.

The Dignity of the Believer

Yasir ibn Hamza says: “I was speaking to Imam Reza (AS) in a gathering. Many people were asking questions about what is lawful and what is not. A tawny tall man entered the room and after greeting said: I am a friend of your followers and your grandfathers. And I have returned from Hajj pilgrimage and I have lost all my properties and provisions.

If it’s possible, could you please help me return to my home – town. It would be very kind and generous of you if you do that, and I shall give the equal of what you have given me as alms, when I will repay and give it to the poor as alms.

The holy Imām said: sit down, may the Mercy of Allah be upon you! Then the Imam faced the crowd and continued to talk and listen to the people until all were dispersed and only that man, Sulaymān Ja‛farÄ«, Heythama and I remaind. Then the Imām asked: “would you let me go inside? The Imām (A.S) went inside and after some moments raised and extended his hand over the door and said: Where is the man from Khorāsān? The man said: I am here the Imām said take this 200 dinars and be blessed with it and do your work. There is no need that you would give alms too. Leave here so that we will not see each other.

When the man went out and the Imām(AS) came in Sulaymān said: May I be sacrificed to you! You have given him a lot of gold coins, why then have you hidden your face from him? The Imam replied: Because I did not want to see him suffering from his asking. Have you not heard that the holy prophet (p.b.u.h) said: “Whoever conceals his good deeds his reward would be equal to making the pilgrimage to Makkah seventy times; and whoever conceals his evil actions, may be forgiven.

Feeding the Needy

It is narrated that at meals Imam Reza (AS) used to put aside a spare bowl to fill with the best portions of food for the indigent. To support his deed His Holiness(AS) recited a Qur’anic verse in connection with feeding the needy which directs the benefactors to the gates of Heaven.

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