by Ali Shariati
My Lord, give me the capability to tolerate an opposing point of view.
My Lord, keep me wise and aware, so that I may not judge someone or some idea right or wrong unless I have understood him/her or it correctly and completely.
My Lord, help me so that I may be aware of the differences between humanity, thoughts, and relationships, and so that I may be capable of distinguishing each of them.
My Lord, give me absolute submission through faith (Iman), so that in the world, I may be in absolute rebellion.
My Lord, inspire me with the piety of rebellion so that I may not stumble in the grandeur of my responsibilities. And save me from the piety of avoidance so that I may not be wasted in the corner of solitude.
My Lord, grant my soul noble worries, troubles and fears. Grant pleasures to your insignificant servants, and grant me honorable concerns and pains.
My Lord, free me from the four prisons of "nature", "history", "society", and "self", so that I may recreate myself in the form that You originally created me, not as an animal who adapts to the environment, but so that I may make my environment adapt to Me.
My Lord, burn in me the sacred fire of doubt, so that it may burn away every certainty that others have imprinted on me. And then, from its ashes, raise the light of certainty, clear of any fog.
My Lord liberate me from the poverty of translation, and inferiority of imitation, so that I may break out of the inherited moulds and so that I may resist the new molding of the West. And so that I may not, like some, wait to move my mouth as others speak.
My Lord, I thank you, as Imam Husain did, for having chosen my enemies from the fools. For having a few stupid enemies is a mercy that Allah grants His special slaves.
My Lord, save me from the friendships and animosities of insignificant and small souls by granting me the friendships of Great Souls such as that of Ali, and of Beautiful Hearts in humanity.
My Lord, inspire our "open minded" ones who consider economics essential that economy is not the goal, and inspire our clergy and religious ones that economy is also essential.
My Lord, grant me success in struggling during failure, in having patience in disappointment, in going alone, in Jihad without weapons, in working without pay, in making sacrifice in silence, in having religious belief in the world, in having ideology without popular traditions, in having faith (Iman) without pretentions, non-conformity without immaturity, beauty without physical appearance, loneliness in the crowd, and loving with the beloved knowing about it.
My Lord, don't grant me knowledge that will not be useful to humanity. Don't make me addicted to the barbaric ignorance of the fine arts, so that while under intoxication of elated feelings and of the heights of lofty understanding, I will fail to see the depth of hunger in the eyes of the hungry or the black bruises of an abused human.
My Lord, tell to the materialists that human is not a plant which grows due to a coincidence in nature, history and society. Tell my people that the only path towards you passes through this world, and show me a shortcut.
My Lord, inspire our religious people to realize that Adam is made of dust. Tell them that a material phenomenon suggests God's existence as much as an unexplainable unseen one; that God is as much in this world as in the next.
My Lord, grant me the grace that my Faith (Iman) will not provide me with fame and wealth. Grant me the power to give away my wealth as well as my fame for the sake of my Iman. So that I may be of those who take the money from the world and work for Deen, nor of those who take the money from the Deen and work for the world.
My Lord, grant me such a life that on my death-bed, I may not be resentful of its worthlessness. And grant me such a death, that I may not mourn for it's uselessness. Let me choose that, but in the way that pleases you the most.
My Lord, Thou Teach me How to Live; And I shall Learn how to Die on my Own.
Thou, Lord! you who have given generosity to the sons of Adam, You who placed Your trust upon the shoulders of the children of Adam, You who selected all of your prophets to teach the Book and establish justice, You who say that greatness belongs to You, ...we are Your people.
We have faith in You and the message of Your prophets. We ask for freedom, awareness, justice and greatness. Grant us these as we are greatly in need of them. More so that at any other time we are sacrificed by slavery, ignorance and weakness.
Oh, God, destroy those who claim power on this land, those who deny your signs, those who kill your prophets , those who kill the people fighting for the freedom of the masses, and those who kill the people who invite others to justice and equity.
Oh God of K'aba! Do not allow these people who pray morning and night, oriented towards your house, who circumambulate around the home of Your Abraham, to be the sacrifices of ignorance and blasphemy and to be put in bondage by the oppressions of the oppressors of the times like Nimroud.
And you, Oh Mohammad , the prophet of awareness, freedom and power! A fire has started in your house and is spreading. A destructive flood is coming from the West upon your land. Your family has for many centuries remained asleep in the black bed of abjectness. Awaken them! As God has said, "Arise and remind them."
And you, Oh Ali. You who are entitled "Lion of God", "Man of God and the people", "Lord of Love and of the Word", we have lost our worthiness to know you. They have removed 'knowing you' from our minds but our love for you continues to exist. It has caught on fire in the depth of our conscience and the membranes of our heart. How can you leave your lovers in abasement? You who could not bear the slightest oppression towards a Jewish woman who was living under an Islamic government, now look at the Muslims who are living under Jewish oppression.
And you, Oh Zaynab, daughter of Ali, you who have Ali's tongue, speak with your community. Oh, woman whose courage has taught courage to your people, mention your name in the hearts and souls of the women of our nation who desperately need you to put the fire of love and pain in their souls. They need you more than ever. On the one hand, ignorance has placed them in slavery and abasement . On the other hand, the west pulls them towards a hidden enslavement. help them to revolt against their new and old foolish ways, save them from being tools of the traditions and new amusement.
Oh Husain! What can I say to you?
"..in such a dark night...in the middle of an ocean erupting with waves and terrible whirlpool..."
You selected RED DEATH in order to release your lovers from the BLACK DEATH. Still with every drop of your blood, you give life to a nation, make the heart of history beat, give heat to the depressed crops of each age, give the excitement of life as well as hope and love.
Our faith, our nation, our history, our future and the integrity of our present...
all are in need of you and your blood!