[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM PERSIAN]

 

[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets.]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]

 

[Adapted from website:] Official Website of Ayatollah Alavi Boroujerdi

[Date:] 20 Khordad 1395 [9 June 2016]

 

The interview of His Holiness Ayatollah Haj Seyyed Mohammad Javad Alavi Borujerdi with Sheikh Khalid Matar Al-Tamimi, the head of the Law Department at Bahr ul-Ulum University in the holy city of Najaf.

Today, we need to compile and teach religious human rights jurisprudence in the seminaries.

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

The Importance of Human Rights and Islam’s Endeavour to Recognize Them

…The necessity of compiling the [Islamic] jurisprudence of human rights.

Today we need to compile and teach the [Islamic] jurisprudence of human rights. This challenge even exists in Iran. Baha’is are our problem. What should we do with Baha’is? According to Islamic principles they are citizens and have rights. We do not have the right to kill and imprison them because of their belief. They have the right to live. Human rights in jurisprudence is an independent topic. We need to have a serious discussion about human rights in the seminaries. This requires compilations and writings for which those gentlemen who worked in this path must make efforts. The late Dr. Bahr ul-Ulum had a good command of the law. In Kuwait, they also served on the Supreme Judicial Council and are well acquainted with these issues. His school and institute naturally welcome these issues. Jurisprudence of human rights is a topic that we must address in our seminaries.

We even have many accounts and recommendations from the Imams (PBUT) regarding the rights of animals and the preservation and protection of water and trees. [Baha’is] also have rights in Islam. The question of water is very crucial today. … Unfortunately, we have not been able to introduce to the world what is known as human rights today.

Efforts of Imam Ali (PBUH) for Human Rights

The treatment of the Imam Ali, the Commander of the Faithful (PBUH) in the face of the Khawarij[1] is also a lesson to learn. Some, even in our country, preach that [Imam] Ali ibn Abi Talib (PBUH) killed the Khawarij, but this is not the case. Ali ibn Abi Talib (PBUH) used to say Friday prayers in front of [Khawarij and his followers]. In the middle of his prayer, [Khawarij and his followers] chanted slogans, and in the middle of his sermon, they said, [Arabic text][2] and the Commander of the Faithful would not allow anyone to protest them, and no matter how much he advised them, it was of no use.

There is nothing like this in the world. The Commander of the Faithful (PBUH) told them to fight, if they do not make peace with them. In the heart of the Islamic State, [Khawarij and his followers] were given the opportunity to recruit people, ammunition and weapons, set up camps and prepare for war and start the war.

Where in the world is there such a thing, that opposition can be given so much freedom that even if they cannot defend themselves with logic, [they can] defend themselves with the sword? Then [Khawarij and his followers] went to war. According to stories, the war was postponed for more than 15 or 20 days.

After the prayers each morning and noon they were enlightening themselves. A large number of [Khawarij and his followers] returned [to Islam] and about five hundred or so remained and some of them escaped. His Holiness told [His followers] to release them and said, “[Arabic text][3]” and directed them not to touch and disturb women and children of [Khawarij and his followers]. These are extraordinary examples that we should touch on, particularly the behaviour of the Commander of the Faithful (PBUH), because the Commander of the Faithful (PBUH) was at war during the time of the Messenger of God (PBUH). Then, during his rule, despite Aisha’s [the wife of Mohammad] being his outspoken enemy, he treated her in such a way that she was taken to Medina safely. These are the examples of human rights that we have and unfortunately, we have not been obeying them. These are the source of our wealth in the world. The West does not have such wealth and richness and we can turn this wealth into a tool for propagating Shiism.

 

 

[1] [The Khawarij are members of a school of thought, that appeared in the first century of Islam during the crisis of leadership after the death of Muhammad. [they] broke into revolt against the authority of Caliph Ali after he agreed to arbitration with his rival, Muawiyah.]

[2] [The original text is as follows: “قتل هذا الرجل ما افق”]

[3] [The original text is as follows: “‎لا تقتلوا الخوارج من بعدی”]