Sunday, May 24, 2009

Ayatollah Bahjat passes away‏

Iranian Shia cleric Grand Ayatollah Hajj Sheikh Mohammad-Taqi Bahjatwho passed away inDar-es-Salaam on May 17. Ayatollah age was 96 and he was admitted at the Vali-e-Asr Hospital in the city of Qom. Born in the northern Iranian city of Fouman in Guilan Province, Ayatollah Bahjat was among one of the most revered Iranian clerics whose religious decrees were followed by many Shia Muslims. He was well-known for hispiety and the strict observance of the principles of Fiqh(Islamic jurisprudence). Grand Ayatullah was born into a religious and pious family in the year 1334AH (1915CE) in Fuman in North Iran. He lost his mother before he was 2 years old. About his father, Mahmood Behjat, family members relate an interesting event. When his father was around 16-17 years of age, he fell seriously ill and they thought he would not survive. When the relatives gathered around this young man, one of the family members heard a voice saying, “Do not worry, he will be fine, because he is going to be the father of Muhammad Taqi.” After this event, the youth soon recovered from his illness, got married a few years later and had several sons. He named his third son Muhammad Taqi in memory of the event of his childhood. However, in infancy, this child fell into a pond and was drowned. He had one more son after him, and he also named him Muhammad Taqi. This last son grew up to be the great scholar and ‘arif, Ayatullah Behjat. His father was a reciter of marsiyas and he would often take the young Agha Behjat with him to his recitals, thus inculcating in him a deep and abiding love for Sayyid al-Shuhada (A.S.). From a young age he showed signs of genius and a great thirst for acquiring knowledge. After his primary studies, he went straight into religious studies, and at the age of 14, he moved to Kerbala. Four years later he came to the famous seminary of Najaf, where he had an opportunity to study under some of the best teachers and scholars in the Muslim world. He studied Usul under Grand Ayatullahs Abu’l Hasan Isfahani, Mirza Na’ini and Shaykh Muhammad Hasan Gharawi Isfahani (known as Kumpani), and Fiqh under Ayatullah Mirza Muhammad Taqi Shirazi. He studied the philosophical texts of Ibn Sina and Mulla Sadra under Ayt. S. Hasan Badkubeyi. At the same time as attending the intermediate and higher levels of religious studies, he was very meticulous in his pursuit of spiritual and mystical instruction. In this regard, his teachers were Ayatullah Muhammad Hasan Isfahani and Ayatullah Sayyid Abdu’l Ghaffar, and finally, the Godly scholar, the matchless instructor, the giant amongst spiritual masters, Ayatullah Sayyid Ali Qadhi Tabataba’i. He remained with his last teacher for many years, learning from him the secrets of the higher paths of Akhlaq and ‘Irfan. 15 years later, he returned to Iran and settled in Qum. Here, in the company of Ayatullah Khomeini, Ayatullah Gulpaygani and other great future figures, he continued his studies under Grand Ayatullah Burujerdi.

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