Portal:Shia Islam

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Shia Islam

Shi'a Islam or Shi`ism (from the Arabic word شيعة, short for the historic phrase shi`at `Ali شيعة علي, meaning "the followers of Ali") is the second-largest Islamic denomination. The singular/adjective form of this name is Arabic shi`i شيعي. This is used to refer to a follower of the Ahlul Bayt, and in particular a follower of Ali ibn Abi Talib, who was the Islamic prophet Muhammad's cousin, his son-in-law, and the father of Muhammad's only descendants. Ali was the male head of the Ahlul Bayt (Muhammad's household).

Selected article

A manuscript of "Al-Risalah al-Dhahabiah"
Al-Risalah al-Dhahabiah (Arabic: الرسالة الذهبیة‎ , Arabic pronunciation: ['rɪsælætæ 'ðæhæ'biæ]; "The Golden Treatise") is a medical dissertation on health and remedies attributed to Ali ibn Musa al-Ridha (765–818), the eighth Imam of Shia. He wrote this dissertation in accordance with the demand of Ma'mun, the caliph of the time. It is revered as the most precious Islamic literature in the science of medicine, and was entitled "the golden treatise" as Ma'mun had ordered it written in gold ink. The chain of narrators is said to reach Muhammad ibn Jumhoor or al-Hassan ibn Muhammad al-Nawfali who is described as "highly esteemed and trustworthy" by al-Najjashi. The treatise of Ali al-Ridha includes scientific branches such as Anatomy, Physiology, Chemistry and Pathology when medical science was still primitive. According to the treatise, one's health is determined by four humors of blood, yellow bile, black bile and phlegm, the suitable proportion of which maintains the health. The liver plays an important role in producing and maintaining the required proportions in the body. Ali al-Ridha describes the body as a kingdom whose king is the heart while the (blood) vessels, the limbs, and the brain are the laborers.

Selected picture

li is the vicegerent of God' (Arabic: علي ولي الله‎) in obverse and reverse
Credit: Mahmoud Ibrahim

Example of mirror writing in Islamic calligraphy. 18th-century Ottoman levha, or calligraphic panel, which depicts the Shi'i phrase 'Ali is the vicegerent of God' (Arabic: علي ولي الله‎) in obverse and reverse, creating an exact mirror image. The calligrapher has used the central vertical fold in the thick cream-colored paper to help trace the exact calligraphic duplication (Selim 1979, 162) prior to mounting it onto a cardboard and pasting rectangular pink frames along its borders.

Selected quote

Hassan ibn Ali, the second Imam of Shia.
"The heart that is empty of doubt is the cleanest of hearts."


  • Majlisi, Bihārul Anwār, vol.78, p. 109.

In the news


  • 10-Nov: Arba'een of Imam Hussain and his diehard companions was observed on 10 November, 2017 (including Arba'een Walk in countries other than Iraq) throughout the world in countries having population of Shia Muslims. Arba'een Pilgrimage was held in Iraq. It was estimated that 25 million would participate in addition to Iranian pilgrims. Different news sources indicate that more than 20 million pilgrims have attended Arbaeen walk/pilgrimage in Iraq from Najaf to Karbala on road by foot. Considering unofficial entries and 1-3 months old entries to Iraq, social media has placed figures highs from 30 to 40 million. However, Western/European Media reports estimates vary of the total attending from highs of 15-17 million [1], (Dawn), (Tehran Times), [2] & [3]


  • 1-Oct: On Ist October & 30th Sept-2017 approximately 6 million people across the globe gathered in Karbala for observing Ashura. Shia Muslims around the world observe Ashura with the aim to express deep sorrow over the martyrdom of Hussein Ibn Ali and the grandson of Prophet Muhammad, at the Battle of Karbala on 10 Muharram in the year 61 AH ( October 10, 680 CE). Ashura is not only observed in the Muslim world but also in Europe, Australia, America and Canada, etc. [4] [5] & [6]
Commemoration of Ashura is a national holiday in Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Lebanon and Bahrain. Also in India Ashura is a public holiday. [7] (ABNA)
This year in Nigeria Ashura mourning processions held in more than 60 towns and cities across the country organized by Islamic Movement in Nigeria.[8]
  • After 21 years, Dr Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin has held the Muharram Majlis series in Karachi, ended on 30 Sept-2017. In addition to local members of the community, these Majalis were attended by 40,000 Shia Muslim belonging to Dawoodi Bohras community from all over the world especially from India, Sri Lanka, Iraq, UAE, Far East, Malaysia, UK, Canada and USA.(Daily Dawn) (The New York Times)
  • 2-Oct: Malaysian Government has freed 200 Shia Iraqi nationals, mostly Masters and Postgraduate students and their family members who were arrested by Malaysian authority in September-2017 on account of their participation in recent Ashura mourning. A former Malaysian ambassador has condemned the arrest of Iraqi Shia Muslims, saying this could court condemnation from the United Nations Human Rights Commission.[9]& (ABNA)

Chosen holy figures

Calligraphy of Muhammad
Muhammad (Arabic: محمد‎; c. 570 – 8 June 632), is considered by Muslims and Bahá'ís to be a prophet and messenger of God. Muhammad is almost universally considered by Muslims as the last prophet sent by God to mankind. He is viewed as the first and best of the Fourteen Infallibles by Shias. Muslims consider him to have restored the unaltered original monotheistic faith of Adam, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and other prophets. The revelations, which Muhammad received until his death, form the verses of the Quran, regarded by Muslims as the "Word of God" and around which the religion is based. Besides the Quran, Muhammad's teachings and practices (sunnah), found in the Hadith and sira literature, are also upheld by Muslims and used as sources of Islamic law. Appraisals in modern history of Muhammad have been favorable, while some of the appraisals of Muhammad throughout history, such as those found in medieval China, have also been positive.

Selected biography

A handwriting by Morteza Avini which reads: "We hold the illusion that we've stayed but the martyrs have passed. But the truth is that time has taken us away with itself, but the martyrs have stayed."
Seyyed Morteza Avini (Persian: سید مرتضی آوینی‎; also spelled Aviny; 23 September 1947 – 9 April 1993) was an Iranian documentary filmmaker, photographer, author, and theoretician of "Islamic Cinema." He studied architecture at Tehran University in 1965. During the Iranian Revolution, Avini started his artistic career as a director of documentary films, and is considered a prominent war filmmaker. He made over 80 films on the Iran–Iraq War. According to Agnes Devictor, Avini invented original cinematography methods, depicting the esoteric side of the Iran–Iraq war in terms of Shia mystical thought. Most of his work was devoted to reflecting how bassijis perceived the war and their role in it. His most famous work is the documentary series Ravayat-e Fath (Narration of Victory), which was filmed during the Iran–Iraq War. He was killed by a landmine explosion in 1993, while filming. He was described as a Shahid (martyr) after his death, and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei declared him "the master of martyred literati" (Persian: سید شهیدان اهل قلم‎). The 20th day of Farvardin is entitled the day of "Islamic Revolution art" in his honor.

Did you know...

On this day: 6 Jumada al-awwal


Main Category:

Detailed information about the Shi'a Islam can be found under these sub-categories:

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