Muslims last Tuesday celebrated the birth of Imam Ali, one of the faith’s greatest teachers after Prophet Muhammad.
The local celebrations were at Fatima Zahra in Hatfield, Harare.
Among those in attendance was the Cultural Counsellor of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran to Zimbabwe, Dr Mohsen Shojakhani, and Chairperson of the Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs in Zimbabwe, Sheikh Ishmail Duwa.
Founder of Fatima Zahra College, Sheikh Abdullah Makwinji, said the blameless life that Imam Ali led was an a symbol of unity, justice and tolerance despite religious differences.
“Imam Ali (peace be upon him) was the first infallible Imam (teacher) after Prophet Muhammad. He was a unique person in every facet of life. From being a great warrior who was never defeated to an illustrious general who never lost.
“And from being a remarkable statesman to a teacher of wisdom, philosophy and morality who was known for his worship and piety, he was indeed a complete role model. And it is from this great personality that the seminary gets its inspiration and guiding spirit. The faith, values, morals and virtues expressed in Imam Ali (peace be upon him)’s life stand in sharp contrast to the disintegrating codes of conduct in today’s world,” Sheikh Makwinja said.
Sheikh Makwinja added that Imam Ali promoted defensive jihad, holy wars to protect the Islamic religion.
“He was a leader in an Islamic nation but he was just to the Jews and Christians who also lived in the same nation. Muhammad said that ‘I’m the city of knowledge and Imam Ali (peace be upon him) is the gate.
“So for everyone to enter into the city which is Muhammad you have to go through the gate and the gate Imam Ali. And this is what Imam Ali Seminary wishes to revive through teaching Islam in the unique traditional methodology that has been handed down to us by the Imams, ” he added.
Imam Ali lived 1 400 years ago.
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