Do we need an Imam?


“In the Name of God, the Beneficent, the Merciful”

Do we need an Imam?

Hisham said, “I was informed about the situation of Amr ibn Ubayd who has gathered some people in Basrah Mosque and was answering their questions. On Friday I entered the mosque in Basra city. Amr ibn Ubayd wore a cloak and fasten a black woolen garment around his waist and people asked him questions. I said, “I have a question”. He replied, “Yes”. I said, “Do you have eyes”. He said, “My dear son, what is this question while you see my eyes?”. I said, “That is my question”. He said, “Ask a question, although it is a stupid question”. I said, “Do you have eyes?” He said, “Yes”. I said, “What are you doing with them?” He said, “With those, I see colors and people”. I said, “Do you have a nose?” He said, “Yes”. I said, “What do you do with it?”. He said, “I smell with it”. I said, “Do you have a mouth?”. He said, “Yes”. I said, “What are you doing with it?”. He said, “I taste foods”. I said, “Do you have ears?” He said, “Yes”. I said, “What are you doing with them?” He said, “I hear voices”. I said, “Do you have a heart (Nafs, Intellect)?”. He said “Yes”. I said, “What are you doing with it?”. He said, “I distinguish and perceive whatever comes to my senses and organs? I said, “Don’t you think that the heart is not necessary to have?”, He said, “No”. I said, “How is it possible while your ears, eyes, tongue are healthy (why do you need to have a heart)?” He said, “My son, whenever the organs doubt on what they see, hear, taste, smell, we use our heart for judgment. The heart is necessary to fade away any doubt and be certain about perceptions.” I said, “So, God created a heart for us to be certain about our perceptions, right?” He said, “Yes”. I said, “The heart is necessary, otherwise there would not be any certainty for the organs, right?”. He said, “Yes”. I said, “O Abba Marwan (Amr Ibn Obaid), Does God leave the creature in a state of confusion and doubt, and did He not appoint an Imam (Leader) for them to turn to in their doubt and confusion while He has appointed an Imam for your organs to refer their doubt to?”. He became silent and did not answer me, after a while he said, “Are you Hisham Ibn Hakam?”. I said, “No”, he said, “Are you one of his companions?”. I said, “No”. He said, “Where are you from?” I said, “The people of Kufa”. He said, “You are the same Hisham”. Then he hugged me and put me in his place and he got up from there and did not speak while I was there. Imam Sadiq (A) laughed and said, “Who taught you this?” I said, “I have got and arranged what I heard from you”. Imam (A) said, “By God, this is in the books of Abraham and Moses”.

Muhammad Mahdi Me’marian

All praise is to God to the extent that He deserves it.

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