16 Wise Sayings of Imam Musa al-Kadhim

Imam Musa ibn Jafar was known as al-Kadhim (the one who restrains his anger) and Bab-ul-Hawaij (The Door to Fulfilling Peoples Needs).

Imam Musa ibn Jafar was known as al-Kadhim (the one who restrains his anger) and Bab-ul-Hawaij (The Door to Fulfilling Peoples Needs).

Imam Musa ibn Jafar, fondly known as the title al-Kadhim, was born in the year 128AH. His father was the great Muslim scholar Imam Sadiq and his mother was Hamidah.


kadhim is someone able to exercise great self-restraint. Imam al-Kadhim was known to restrain his anger in every situation.

Shaykh Mufid narrates the following story as one example of his restraint:

There was a man in Medina who used to curse the Imam, and distort his image, to the extent that the companions of the Imam asked for permission to kill him, but the Imam used to forbid them from hurting him. Then one day, the Imam went to the man’s garden. When the man saw him, he said: Do not step on my plants, for he was so hateful that he did not even have the courtesy of welcoming him. The Imam continued to move towards him. And when he reached the man the Imam asked him: How much did you pay for your plants, and how much do you expect to gain? Adding the two sums together the Imam gave him the money and said:

Take this money and you still can sell your corps, and he started talking to him in a very pleasant and kind manner. The man felt guilty and changed his attitude towards the Imam. The next day the man went to the mosque. When he saw the Imam coming he said: “God knows where he puts His Message”. Asked what made him change his mind, he said that it was the way the Imam dealt with him. The Imam then asked his companions: which is better the way you wanted to deal with this man using violence or my way?


The below short sayings of Imam Kadhim highlight his wisdom and knowledge and are worth reflecting over. These are taken from the book,  Tuhaf al-Uqoul.

  1. Everything has its tax, and the tax of the body is the recommendable fasting.
  2. The moderate will never be needy. Moderation is half of the livelihood. Amicability is half of intelligence. Hastiness is the true clumsiness.
  3. To depress the parents is impiety to them.
  4. No one will gain the reward of suffering a misfortune unless he who forbears it and says inna lillaahi wa inna ilayhi raji’oun
  5. God aids in as much as the need and endows with steadfastness as much as the misfortune. The graces will persist for the moderate and the satisfied. The graces will be removed from the immoderate and the exaggerative.
  6. The fulfilment of the trusts and honesty bring earnings, while treachery and fabrication cause poverty and hypocrisy.
  7. Anyone who acknowledges God should not complain when his earnings are delayed and should not accuse God of His acts.
  8. Conviction is to depend upon God, submit to Him, consent to His acts, and entrust Him with the affairs.
  9. The believer is like the two pans of a balance — the more faith he enjoys, the more misfortunes he faces.
  10. He who speaks in the Essence of God will perish, he who seeks power will perish, and he who feels self-conceited will perish.
  11. Whenever you extend your hand towards any source of worldly supplies, you will find out that a sinful has preceded you there. When you intend to obtain a source of religious supplies, you will not find anyone helping you.
  12. Do not take liberties with your friend. You should keep any quantity of respect among you lest you will lose prudency.
  13. O son, let not God see you committing an act of disobedience against which He warned you, and let Him not miss you in an act of obedience to Him of which He ordered you. Keep serious and do not convince yourself that you are worshipping and obeying God perfectly because no one can achieve perfection in worshipping God.
  14. Beware of joking because it extinguishes the illumination of your faith and disgraces your personality.
  15. Beware of indolence and laziness because they prevent you from receiving your shares of the pleasures of this world and the world to come.
  16. When injustice predominates over the right, it is unacceptable to expect good from anybody before investigation.

Imam Musa Al-Kadhim spent much of his life in prison during the peak of the Abbasid caliphate. He was martyred in the prison of Sandi Ibn Shahak in Baghdad on 25 of Rajab in the year 183AH. He is buried in Iraq.



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