Here I must point out that tahrif also differs in respect of the subject involved. There is a time when tahrif occurs in an ordinary speech, as when two persons misrepresent each other\\\\\\\'s words. But there are times when tahrif takes place in a matter of great significance to society, such... Show More >>Here I must point out that tahrif also differs in respect of the subject involved. There is a time when tahrif occurs in an ordinary speech, as when two persons misrepresent each other\\\\\\\'s words. But there are times when tahrif takes place in a matter of great significance to society, such as when there is misrepresentation of eminent personalities. There are personalities whose words and deeds represent a sacred authority for the people and whose character and conduct is a model for mankind. For instance, if someone were to ascribe to Imam \\\\\\\'Ali (a) a statement that he did not make or something that he had not meant to say, that is very dangerous. The same is true if a characteristic or trait is ascribed to the Prophet (S) or one of the Imams (\\\\\\\'a) when in fact they had some other qualities, or when tahrif occurs in a great historic event which serves as a moral and religious authority and as a momentous document from the viewpoint of society\\\\\\\'s norms and is a criterion in matters of morality and education. It is a matter of incalculable ,importance and entails a crucial danger when tahrif-whether in respect of words or meaning-occurs in subjects which are not of the ordinary kind.
There is a time when someone tampers with a verse of Hafiz or makes interpolations in an animal fable. This is not so important, though, of course one should not tamper with books of literary value.
These analogies have no relation at all to the theme. Of course such a thing should not happen, but these interpolations do not harm a society\\\\\\\'s life and felicity and do not cause deviance in its course. But when tahrif occurs in things that relate to the people\\\\\\\'s morality and religion, it is dangerous, and this danger is incalculable when it occurs in documents and matters that constitute the foundations of human life.
The event of Karbala\\\\\\\' is, inevitably, an event possessing great social meaning for us, and it has a direct impact on our morality and character.
It is an event that prompts our people, without anyone compelling them, to devote millions of man-hours to listening to the related episodes and to spend millions of tumans for this purpose. This event must be retold exactly as it occurred and without the least amount of interpolation. For if the smallest amount of interpolation takes place at our hands in this event, that would distort it, and instead of benefiting from it we would definitely suffer harm.
My point is that we have introduced thousands of distortions in retelling the narrative of Ashura, both in its outward form, that is, in respect of the very episodes and issues relating to the major events and the minor details, as well as in respect of their interpretation and meaning. Most regrettably, this event has been distorted both in its form and content.
At times a distorted version has at least some resemblance to the original. But there are times when distortion is so thorough that the corrupted version has not the least resemblance to the original: the matter is not only distorted, but it is inverted and turned into its antithesis. Again I must say with utmost regret that the misrepresentations that have been carried out by us have all been in the direction of degrading and distorting the event and making it ineffective and inert in our lives. In this regard both the orators and scholars of the ummah as well as the people have been guilty, and, God willing, we will elucidate all these matters. Show Less >>
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