The importance of Intelligence in Shia narrations  – 8


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

The importance of Intelligence in Shia narrations  – 8

H 8, Ch. 1, h 8

Ali ibn Muhammad ibn ‘Abdallah has narrated from Ibrahim ibn Ishaq al-Ahmar from Muhammad ibn Sulayman al-Daylami his father, who has said the following.

“Once, I mentioned a certain person’s intelligence, worship, and religion before Imam Abu ‘Abdallah (A). The Imam (A) asked, “How is his intelligence? The man replied, ‘I do not know.’ The Imam said, “The degree of reward is based on the degree of intelligence. A man of Bani Israel worshipped Allah on an island in the ocean. The island was lush green, with many trees and abundant water. Once, an angel passed by the worshipper and asked Allah to show how much reward and blessings the worshipper would receive for his good deeds. Allah showed the rewards due to the worshipper to the angel, and the angel considered it very little. Allah then told the angel to stay with the worshipper as a companion. The angel then appeared to the worshipper in the form of a human being. The worshipper asked, “Who are you?” ‘ I have heard about your great worships and your spiritual position at this place, and I wish to join you to worship Allah along with you.” The angel said. He spent that day with the worshipper, and the next day the angel said to the worshipper, “Your place is beautiful, and it should only be used for worship.” ‘Yes, it is, but it has one shortcoming.’ The worshipper responded. “What is that?” The angel inquired. “Our Lord does not have an animal. I wish He had a donkey so that we would look after the donkey to graze all the grass around. All these grasses are a waste.” ‘Does your Lord have no donkey? Asked the angel. “Had our Lord had a donkey, all this grass would not have turned into waste.” The worshipper answered with sadness. Allah then revealed to the angel, “We reward everyone according to the degree of his/her intelligence.”[1]


Have you thought about what other people think about God? Do you think they know more about the worshipers of Bani Israel? If you talk to them, they say God is something like light, for example, he is in the heavens. He created us and sat waiting for the Day of Resurrection, then He will give each person his rewards and punishments.

The degree of reward is according to the degree of intellect, not the number of actions. In a hadith from the beginning of the book, we were reading that when God created the intellect, He said to it: Come to me. So, it came to the Highest; God said: Get away from me. So, it went away. Then God said: But I command through you, I forbid through you, I punish through you, and I reward through you. God says, “We made what is upon the earth an ornament for it, to test them as to which of them is best in conduct[2] (Al-Kahf:7). A narration says, “The Qur’anic verse did not say which one do you do more, but it says Which one do you do better? Someone asked, what is the goodness of action? Imam replied, “It is by the intellect”, knowledge, and insight. The difference between Amir Al-Mu’minin Ali (A) and others is not that He prayed a thousand rak’ats a night; it is because they don’t have his knowledge, intellect, and insight. The reward is according to the intellect, not according to the action. Therefore, when the companions asked the Holy Prophet Muhammad (S), “What are the best deeds?” Prophet said, “The Knowledge”. They said, “O Prophet of God, we ask about action, and you answer about knowledge?  Prophet said, “Yes, because with knowledge, little effort is accepted, and without knowledge, many actions are not accepted either”. Knowledge is the foundation of action. A narration says, Some people, including Omar, came to the Messenger of God (S) and said, “O Messenger of God, who is the best of people? He said: Wise. They said, “Who is noble? He said: Wise, The reward is as much as the intellect”.

The monotheist’s worship is not like other people’s. They may stand in a line in the congregation, but their level is very different.

Some people put their heads in prostration for their lifetime and say, “Sobhan Allah – Glory be to God.” But if someone asks them, “What does “Glory be to God” mean? They wouldn’t know, or they will say, that God is pure. So, what does pure mean? There is no difference between their prostration and a child’s prostration. A child acts like a person who prays and says the same words, and they do the same. This is true for most people except monotheists. The narration says, “The prayer is the ascension of believers”. They prayed for fifty years, but nothing happened to them because they prayed and fasted for fifty years and did not have knowledge and insight. My dears, look for “knowledge”. When we leave this world, the thing that accompanies us is our knowledge that defines our horizon there. A poem says,

Search for the jewel of knowledge that you take with you,

which belongs to others, the gold and wealth.

We pray to God not to be one who says they wish God has a donkey.

Muhammad Mahdi Me’marian

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

[1] – عَلِی بْنُ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ، عَنْ إِبْرَاهِیمَ بْنِ إِسْحَاقَ الْأَحْمَرِ، عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ سُلَیمَانَ الدَّیلَمِی، عَنْ أَبِیهِ، قَالَ:

قُلْتُ لِأَبِی عَبْدِ اللَّهِ عَلَیهِ السَّلَامُ: فُلَانٌ مِنْ عِبَادَتِهِ وَ دِینِهِ وَ فَضْلِهِ کذَا وَ کذَا، فَقَالَ عَلَیهِ السَّلَامُ: «کیفَ عَقْلُهُ؟» قُلْتُ: لَاأَدْرِی، فَقَالَ عَلَیهِ السَّلَامُ: «إِنَّ الثَّوَابَ عَلی قَدْرِ الْعَقْلِ؛ إِنَّ رَجُلًا مِنْ بَنِی إِسْرَائِیلَ کانَ یعْبُدُ اللَّهَ فِی جَزِیرَةٍ مِنْ جَزَائِرِ الْبَحْرِ، خَضْرَاءَ، نَضِرَةٍ، کثِیرَةِ الشَّجَرِ، ظَاهِرَةِ الْمَاءِ، وَ إِنَّ مَلَکاً مِنَ الْمَلَائِکةِ مَرَّ بِهِ، فَقَالَ: یا رَبِّ، أَرِنِی ثَوَابَ عَبْدِک هذَا، فَأَرَاهُ اللَّهُ تَعَالی ذلِک، فَاسْتَقَلَّهُ الْمَلَک، فَأَوْحَی اللَّهُ تَعَالی إِلَیهِ أَنِ اصْحَبْهُ، فَأَتَاهُ الْمَلَک فِی صُورَةِ إِنْسِی، فَقَالَ لَهُ: مَنْ أَنْتَ؟ قَالَ: أَنَا رَجُلٌ عَابِدٌ بَلَغَنِی مَکانُک و عِبَادَتُک فِی هذَا الْمَکانِ، فَأَتَیتُک لِأَعْبُدَ اللَّهَ مَعَک، فَکانَ مَعَهُ یوْمَهُ ذلِک، فَلَمَّا أَصْبَحَ، قَالَ لَهُ الْمَلَک: إِنَّ مَکانَک لَنَزِهٌ وَ مَا یصْلُحُ إِلَّا لِلْعِبَادَةِ، فَقَالَ لَهُ الْعَابِدُ: إِنَّ لِمَکانِنَا هذَا عَیباً، فَقَالَ لَهُ: وَ مَا هُوَ؟ قَالَ: لَیسَ لِرَبِّنَا بَهِیمَةٌ، فَلَوْ کانَ لَهُ حِمَارٌ رَعَینَاهُ فِی هذَا المَوْضِعِ؛ فَإِنَّ هذَا الْحَشِیشَ یضِیعُ، فَقَالَ لَهُ الْمَلَک: وَ مَا لِرَبِّک حِمَارٌ؟ فَقَالَ: لَوْ کانَ لَهُ حِمَارٌ مَا کانَ یضِیعُ مِثْلُ هذَا الْحَشِیشِ، فَأَوْحَی اللَّهُ تَعَالی إِلَی الْمَلَک: إِنَّمَا أُثِیبُهُ عَلی قَدْرِ عَقْلِهِ».

[2] -إِنَّا جَعَلْنَا مَا عَلَى الْأَرْضِ زِينَةً لَّهَا لِنَبْلُوَهُمْ أَيُّهُمْ أَحْسَنُ عَمَلًا

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