Imam Khomeini's philosophical and mystical attitude

Imam Khomeini's philosophical and mystical attitude

Imam Khomeini, the spiritual leader of contemporary world, had not only possessed a jurisprudential outlook, but also a superior philosophical and mystical attitude.

 Imam Khomeini had three fundamental dimensions: knowledge, insight and political action concurrent with the requirements of the time.

In the realm of knowledge and insight, he not only possessed a jurisprudential outlook, but also a superior philosophical and mystical attitude.

In political action, he was not only an expert and great revolutionary leader but also the founder of a political and social system. Imam Khomeini had derived the foundation of his philosophical and mystical attitude from mentors such as Haj Sayyid Abu 'l Hasan Qazvini (died in 1342 AHS) known as 'Allamah Qazvini, who had said about accompanying the Imam:

"Accompany this Sayyid, for if you do not, you will become abject, Ayatullah Shah Abadi, the moderate and comprehensive moralist and 'Ali-Akbar Yazdi, known as hakim (sage or savant).

In 1347 AH, Imam Khomeini began teaching philosophy at the age of 27. He began teaching fiqh (jurisprudence) and usul (fundamentals of fiqh) 17 years later in 1364 AH and this was done in conditions described as follows:

In those days, these words were bandied about in the theological seminary: "one who teaches philosophy and be so pious has not been seen in a theological seminary."

Therefore, Imam Khomeini's philosophical and mystical attitude preceded his jurisprudential approach. This had produced a determining impact on his jurisprudential conceptions.

On this basis, he was a rationalist thinker and contrary to many of the fuqaha (jurists) in whose view religiosity took precedence over rationalism (ta'aqqul) or superior to it, in the Imam's viewpoint a logical combination of both was in force. In this arena he viewed religiosity as subject to rationalism.

The reason was his approach to philosophy and thereafter to 'irfan (mysticism). It has been said that when he taught manzumeh and asfar in Qum, he was attacked in forms of slander and accusations by his reactionary enemies. However, his scientific prowess, morale, resistance and the assistance of God Almighty did not let him be defeated in the face of the intellectual stagnance of the reactionaries. 

Based on such an attitude, he stressed the illuminated intellect and demonstrating reasoning and commanded a political insight and approach and was abreast of the time, looking at 'irfan (mysticism) in line with a realization of sound politics in society.

It was this attitude and political vigilance that transformed him into a revolutionary and popular leader. Perhaps it can be said that for a theologian-jurist there was no way into society except through philosophical and demonstrable approach, because with such an attitude he could employ knowledge and learning as an instrument to give expression to humane side of man in Utopia.

Imam Khomeini in his attitude also paid a special attention to man. From his perspective, man has been endowed with Divine fitrah (primordial nature), and this is one of the favors of God Almighty has granted man. Man, among other creatures, is an entity that is capable of moving in two infinite dimensions and that his talent for perfection is endless. No other creature may be compared to him from this aspect.

Man is a strange creature. In all classes of God's creatures none is like man. This exclusive to man that God Almighty has created him with all His sacred qualities and attributes.

On this basis, the delegation of prophets and messengers for the construction and elevation of man to perfection is deserving of him. Religions, including Islam, serve as a prelude to producing a perfect man and the Qur'an is a Book to elevate this creature - the main goal behind the mission of prophets.

 Hence, if man in the course of perfection, moved towards the Almighty and became like God, he would be transformed into (a manifestation of) God's great attribute and image of Him.

Furthermore, from the viewpoint of Imam Khomeini, revelation, which is in no way in conflict with sound human intellect, is man's way towards guidance and perhaps the best and the sole way for his upbringing and making.

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