The Twelve Precepts (التعاليم الاثني عشر الفطرة)
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
“When our Qa’im rises he will face so much difficulty from the people that even during the period of Jahiliyah did not face.” Fadl asked: “Why should that be so?” The Imam said:
“When Muhammad was appointed people worshipped stones and wood. However, when our Qa’im arises people will interpret the ordinances of Allah against his interpretation, and will argue with him and dispute by means of the Qur’an. By Allah, the justice of the Qa’im will enter inside their homes, just as the heat and the cold enter them.”
“When imam Mahdi rises, Allah will make the ears and the eyes of the followers of imam Mahdi so sharp that there will be no courier between them and the Imam. He will speak to his followers from his location, and they will hear his words and see the imam himself.”
In order to lay forth the basic guidelines by which members of the Taliyah al-Mahdi abide in day to day life – and pursuant to the spiritual and physical disciplines which all are encouraged to strive after – the following actions and guidelines are presented to aid in personal and collective edification.
The relative shortness of this list should not be interpreted as an implication of completion thereof. Just as we cannot be limited by language or title through which we describe ourselves, neither do any number of words succeed in defining the entirety of truth or a correct approach to life. All we may do is sketch an approximation of the truth which resides within the vision of the illustrator. Those with knowledge will see the sketch for what it represents, but will never mistake this for the substantive subject.
To be certain, the actions of the Mu’minun (المؤنين) (those with “Iman,” إيمان “Faith” and “Certitude”), should exceed these general guidelines whenever possible. We are not a Jam`ah limited to and defined by lists of rules and regulations. Rather, our actions are manifest from the roots of our underlying holistic Way of Life. With that said, the following are to serve as a general set of guidelines to assist in one’s journey:
- The Mu’minun of the Jam`at al-Fitrah, which we call the Taliyah al-Mahdi, should strive to educate one’s “self” in manifestations of prophetic teachings and spiritual guidance (both esoteric and exoteric), throughout world religious traditions. Thus, through this, one should trace all traditions back to pure, unadulterated “Islam” (اسلام) as it is called in `Arabic. For it is this, not institutionalized religion, which was taught by the prophets sent to all nations around which such “isms” of said global paradigms have emerged and sociologically evolved. The ultimate goal of such study is not a matter of intellectual bantering, nor is it a matter of data collection. Rather, through studying all prophetic traditions one is potentially able to gain a more objectively rounded perspective on the Universal Spiritual Path taught by all prophets, rather than limiting oneself to a manifestation within the context of one culture. As such, it should be explained, the language primarily employed in describing many religious concepts by us is `Arabic, only for the fact that the Seal of the Prophets, the Final Prophet before the return of `Isa (عيسى), the Qur’anic and Tibetan name for Jesus, brought this Universal Path through the medium of an `Arabic Qur’an (Recitation). To that end alone, it is a cultural reference point and nothing more. Neither `Arabic, nor Hebrew, nor Sanskrit nor any other human language is any more or less Divine; they have all organically evolved in response to sociological needs. As such, they are all holy languages and the only benefits to their study is in transcending boundaries of communication and grasping the textual implications of Holy Writ.
- The Mu’minun should train in all manners (physical, spiritual, philosophical, psychological, et al), relevant for the Revolution; as though victory is imminent and within the grasps of this generation. To be clear, this is not an inqilaab (انقلاب) or “overthrow,” but a thawrah (ثورة), a “revolution.” As such this is first and foremost a Revolution of Consciousness, a Revolution of the Mind, a Revolution of Spirit. As such, it is NOT designed to overthrow any particular nation, as our interest is not to gain political control over any government. Allah is in control. We are an illusion. Training must be for the sake of itself. One must never train to kill, but train to discipline themselves, and to kill the inner shaiytaan which seeks to destroy. This approach to training is not the least bit unique, but is from a common perspective as the Buddhist and Daoist monks who trained in Chinese Martial Academies throughout the ages. Indeed, it is no coincidence that Muhammad said to seek out `Ilm (العلم) or “Knowledge,” even unto China. As such, training must be without regards to whether or not victory will manifest in this generation, or over the course of many generations. It must furthermore not predefine, within the mind of the mutasawwuf, what that Revolution (or victory) will look like. Those who rejected every prophet, sage, imam, shaykh or even revolutionary before them did so because the individual or idea did not fit their subjective, preconceived expectations. `Isa was the “Mashiach Ben Yosef” (משיח בן יוסף) of a splintered Qumrani (קומראני/قمراني) expectation, but did not fit in with the eschatological views of other First Century Judean sects. Many tribes accepted Muhammad – first as an organizer in his teenage year, and later as a unifier of divided tribes – until he violated their subjective expectations. Even amongst the polytheists, Muhammad was respected and regarded as Al-Amin (الأمين). It was only once he violated their expectations of a prophet and leader that they turned their back on him. As such, we must never lose sight of the fact that the Mahdi is said to be amongst only 313 Mu’minun. Ja`far as-Sadiq said he did not have even five true followers amongst hundreds of thousands. It is entirely possible that the Mahdi of popular imagination, and his Revolution, will bear little or no resemblance to what will be recorded in the pages of history.
- We do not require certain parameters within which one must train. However, we encourage that one strive to be well rounded in their discipline; not over-emphasizing the external forms and systems of fighting, but also taking care not to neglect the external styles which are strong in areas where other systems are weaker. That is to say, while Internal Alignment, Energy (building and manipulation), and Rotation must be emphasized, they should not be to the exclusion of external fundamentals of endurance, strength, agility and ability to apply the internal through external bodily mastery. Yang, Lu-Ch’an, the founder of Yang Style T’aijiquan and an undefeated full contact fighter in all of China, said that “the faster of the two will win a fight.” This speed is not attainable through external neglect. As a matter of circumstance, how one person trains in one region will naturally differ from how another in another will train. As such, we hold no bay`ah (بيعة), or “allegiance,” to any particular martial lineage or family, but instead follow the philosophical maxim of Jun Fan (Bruce Lee), and indeed the vast majority of truly memorable fighters, by “accepting what is useful and rejecting what is useless.” As the Qur’an says as well “truth is manifest from falsehood.”
- The Mu’min will exercise moral discretion in the application of force and use of coercive force, to only manifest violence in defense of “self” or “others” who are innocent; having not initiated violence through their own aggression. Our perspective on violence is that it is only acceptable as means of defense of “self” and “others” under the limited aforementioned conditions.[9 10] We reaffirm this basic right of defense, recognized by all civilized nations. Such defensive manifestations of violence are the only actions which fit an acceptable definition of externalized “Jihad.” (جھاد). Violence which is enacted against any other is considered murder under the definition by all prophets and scriptures. Neither desperation, nor being in the political minority can change the hurmah (حرمة) of murder.
- Following this, we are united against terrorists; defined as those who target innocent civilians, political dissedents or who otherwise fight in an illegitimate manner in order to forward a political agenda. As such, we vow to protect and to defend civilians in any manner we are able to; fighting against such terrorists as a manifestation – in the present – of the perpetual return of the imam. We accordingly denounce all forms of murder and collateral targeting for the purposes of political sway.
- The mutasawwuf (متصوف) should not only train spiritually – in order that the illusory division between spirit and flesh be dissolved – but also physically; understanding that the physical world is an expression of the mental construct of the Divine Mind. Thus, the true Mu’min should pursue practices and disciplines, which aid in the dissolving of the illusion of spirit and flesh; first, balancing the body and secondly, harmonizing it with the mind and spirit. Conversely, training in the physical – while it is a path inward – cannot substitute pure spiritual discipline. With that said, all spiritual paths employ external form and ritualism to connect to and influence the spiritual. While our physical training is inseparable from spiritual objectives, it must not be viewed as the only, nor even primary, means of attaining spiritual perfection; the state of the Sufi (صوفي), the state of the insan al-kamil (الاسان الكام).
- Seeing beyond the illusion of duality, the illusion of “you” and “i,” we wash our hands of the oppression of women throughout history and oppose all forms of domination of man over woman. Both men and women are equally a product of illusion in this realm of dunyaa (دنيا). While differences exist between the genders, and these differences are both unavoidable and undeniable, these are merely manifestations of the universal principles of Yin and Yang, with neither complementary force superior nor inferior to the other. Indeed, Yin is the more enduring of the two polarities and is accordingly more naturally close to the Way. This is intuitively recognized by phrases such as “woman’s intuition,” which testify to the reality that women are naturally closer to a state of fitrah than men. It is the inborn sense of alienation that leads any to amass power and oppress; whether it is men over women, dominant religious groups over minority groups, humankind over non-human animals and even this planet, which bears witness against us to Allah.
- Similarly, in recognizing the Oneness of Existence, we realize that ALL life is One, and that – as the Prophet Muhammad said – compassion shown to any living being is rewarded. As such, we follow what the great spiritual leader (imam) `Ali ibn Abi Taalib termed the “Minhaj al-Awwal,” (المنھج الاول) the “First Way” which he also called the “Minhaj al-Masih” (منھج المسيح) the “Way of the Messiah.” This is the original path of compassion and mercy, followed by mankind in `Eden. As such, we strive to live out the `Edenic ideal as much as possible, relative to the regional contexts we each find ourselves in. This means that for the mutasawwuf, compassion to all life is not a matter of lip service, nor a matter of buying meat marked with a stamp that says “halal” (حلال). The notion of hillah (حل ة) goes beyond blanket assumptions of exoneration from transgression; asking whether a thing is beneficial to our spiritual growth, and whether our actions impact others in a positive or detrimental manner. Indeed, Hadithtells us that “the most hated halaal thing by Allah is divorce,” reminding us that while some things are halaal (legal), they are not necessarily favored by Allah. To this end, the Qur’an tells us to eat of what is halaal and tayyib (طيّب), good, not merely of what is halaal.
- As the Children of Adam, our common ancestor, we strive to dissolve the illusory notions of tribalism, nationalism, racialism and racism. We are all from the common source, both biologically and spiritually. As such, any notion of superiority of one tribe or “race” over another is the epitome of immersion in the illusion of this realm of dunyaa. As such, we absolutely reject any notion of racial or familial superiority. While the Ahl al-Bayt were regarded as exceptional individuals, Hadith tells us that Salman al-Farsi, who was not related through blood, nor even of the same so-called “race,” was of the Ahl al-Bayt as well! While exceptional figures arose as a’immah from the Ahl al-Bayt, figures like Ja`far as-Sadiq had to exhort his own brethren not to abuse defenseless animals for no reason at all! Clearly, any notion of nobility based on genetic lineage is the invention of `asabiyyah (عصبية) and a throwback to the era of Jahiliyyah (جاھلية); entirely foreign to Islam. We accordingly reject all titles of “Sayyid” (سيِّد) unless one is referenced as spiritually “Sayyid.”In affirming the absolute Unity of all, beyond the illusory boundaries of gender, race or the like, we vow to defend all who are subjected to acts of aggression not on the basis of commission of crimes, but rather on the basis of being of a so-called “minority” status within the boundaries of any society. Whenever it is within our power to do something to prevent such a crime, we must do what we can to stop it, whether by words or deeds.
- In accordance with the furud (فروض) of Islam to “Enjoin the good and forbid the evil,” ‘Amr Bil Ma’roof wa-Nahy anil Munkar (الامر بالعروف و النھي عن المنكر), we vow to speak out against all forms of injustice and corruption whenever and wherever it is seen manifest. No difference will be made between whoever is committing an action which conscience dictates we must speak out against. This is the same whether this is the nation of our birth, ancestry or against members of our own culture, religion or family. As such, our personal path of perfection cannot be divorced from social concern and activism. Just as external training may serve as a path to inward progression, social activism, if done with the proper focus, also may serve as an act of spiritual unification.
- Typically, one becomes a revolutionary because of force of circumstance leaving them no other option but to struggle in defense of themselves and that which they hold dear. When this norm is violated, it is usually by those seeking psychological fulfillment and satisfaction, thus exhibiting purported empathy with the oppressed. Neither of such positions is better than the other, and both have proven time and time again to be destined for failure. That which we hold dear is innocent life itself. We do not define ourselves as a “people” according to tribalistic lines. When one is oppressed then all are oppressed. It is by this understanding that we live and act. As such, we seek our sole motivation to be “Loving and Hating for the sake of Allah,” al-Walaa’ wa-l-Baraa’ (الولع والبرع), doing righteous deeds for the sake of righteousness itself, and not for any reward whether manifest or rooted in a warped psychological fulfillment found in the privileged seeking to identify
- The true Mu’min should strive to unify divisions whenever and wherever possible. This is done in an effort to return all things to their source. Thus we do not seek to create yet another division, but rather seek to reason together as to the origins of sectarian disputes and divisions; thus (as members), rising above such differences, and viewing such disputes of the past from a more objective perspective; acknowledging that neither party in almost any dispute is entirely right or wrong. The Truth itself is found somewhere between the extremes and polarizations of subjective “opinion.” That too is where we strive to walk; along the Middle Way, the Central Column, the Straight Path (Sirat al-Mustaqim) (السراط المستقيم).
 Ithbat al-Hudat, Vol. 7, p. 86
 ‘Usul al-Kafi, Vol. 8, Pg. 240-241
 A clear distinction is made in the Qur’an between Muslimun and Mu’minun. We are to strive for the state of Iman, not merely “Islam.” Islam is not the highest state of Din, but rather a minimum and clearly very easy path. The Qur’an tells us in Surat al-Hujrat 49:14 “The Aaraab say, “We believe.” (tuminu) Say: You believe not; but rather say, “We profess Islam;” (aslamna) for the faith (al-imanu) has not yet found its way into your hearts. But if you obey Allah and Hu’s Messenger, he will not allow you to lose any of your actions: for Allah is Indulgent, Merciful.”
قَالَتِ الْأَعْرَابُ آمَنَّا ۖ قُلْ لَمْ تُؤْمِنُوا وَلَٰكِنْ قُولُوا أَسْلَمْنَا وَلَمَّا يَدْخُلِ الْإِيمَانُ فِي قُلُوبِكُمْ ۖ وَإِنْ تُطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ لَا يَلِتْكُمْ مِنْ أَعْمَالِكُمْ شَيْئًا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ
 “The Messenger believes in what has been revealed to him from his Lord, as do the men of faith. Each one of them believes in Allah, Hu’s angels, Hu’s Scriptures, and Hu’s Messengers. They say: ‘We make no distinction between one and another of Hu’s Messengers.’ And they say: ‘We hear, and we obey. We seek Your forgiveness, Our Lord, and to You is the end of all journeys.’” (Al-Baqarah, 2.285)
آمَنَ الرَّسُولُ بِمَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مِنْ رَبِّهِ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ ۚ كُلٌّ آمَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَمَلَائِكَتِهِ وَكُتُبِهِ وَرُسُلِهِ لَا نُفَرِّقُ بَيْنَ أَحَدٍ مِنْ رُسُلِهِ ۚ وَقَالُوا سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا ۖ غُفْرَانَكَ رَبَّنَا وَإِلَيْكَ الْمَصِيرُ
“Verily, We have sent you in truth, as a bearer of glad tidings, and as a warner: and there never was a people, without a warner having lived among them (in the past).” (Fatir, 35.24)
 “Seek knowledge, even unto China” (numerous sources)
طلبوا العلم ولو بالصین
 T’aijiquan, more popularly transliterated in the West as “Tai Chi Ch’uan” is one of the Internal Family (Nei Jia) systems of Chinese Kung-Fu. Other popular styles include (but are not limited to), Xingyiquan (Hsing Yi Chuan) and Baguazhang (Pa Kua Chang). These styles focus on embodying Yin and Yang within all martial techniques, generating power from within and from connection to the world which the individual is symbiotically a facet of, as well as overcoming force through yielding; using an opponent’s force against them.
 “There is no compulsion in The Way, for truth is distinct clearly from falsehood`.” (Al-Baqarah, 2:256)
لَا إِكْرَاهَ فِي الدِّينِ ۖ قَدْ تَبَيَّنَ الرُّشْدُ مِنَ الْغَيِّ ۚ فَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ بِالطَّاغُوتِ وَيُؤْمِنْ بِاللَّهِ فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَكَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَىٰ لَا انْفِصَامَ لَهَا ۗ وَاللَّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ
 “(Only) fight in the Divine Cause those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for God loves not transgressors. . And slay (those who continue to oppress the innocent) wherever ye catch them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out; for tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter; but fight them not at the Sacred Mosque, unless they (first) fight you there; but if they fight you, slay them. Such is the reward of those who suppress faith. But if they cease, God is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. And fight them on until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in The Divine. But if (the oppressors) cease (their oppression), then let there be no hostility except to those (among them who continue to) practice oppression.”
 “There is not an animal on earth, nor a bird that flies on its wings, but they are communities like you…”. (Al-An`am, 6.38)
وَمَا مِنْ دَابَّةٍ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَلَا طَائِرٍ يَطِيرُ بِجَنَاحَيْهِ إِلَّا أُمَمٌ أَمْثَالُكُمْ ۚ مَا فَرَّطْنَا فِي الْكِتَابِ مِنْ شَيْءٍ ۚ ثُمَّ إِلَىٰ رَبِّهِمْ يُحْشَرُونَ
 It is written that a disciple of imam `Ali, Nuf al-Bukali, said, “I spent a night with the ‘Amir al-Mu’minin, `Ali ibn Abu Talib. I saw that he often left his room to go outside and look at the sky. Once when he came back in, as usual, he said to me, ‘Are you asleep or awake?’ I said, ‘I am indeed awake, Ya ‘Amir al-Mu’minin! From the beginning of the night I have been watching you to see what you are doing.’ He said, ‘Ya Nuf! Blessed are the ascetics in this world, those who yearn for the other world, the people who spread Allah’s Earth beneath them [to sleep on], who lean against its dust, whose motto is Kitabahu (Hu’s Book), whose maxim is supplicating Hu, whose perfume is water and who takes the world on loan in the Minhaj al-Masih (the ‘Way,’ or ‘Manhaj‘ of the Messiah). Verily, Allah the Exalted revealed to `Isa, ‘Ya `Isa! Keep to the Minhaj al-Awwal (the First ‘Way’ or ‘Manhaj‘), keep to the manner of the Mursalin (Deliverers of the Message), say to your people, ‘O brother of the Munzhirin (warners), ‘Do not enter any of My houses except with pure hearts, clean hands and lowered eyes. I will not hear the prayer of any who supplicate Me if any of My servants is oppressed by him. And I will not answer the prayer of any who has not fulfilled and of My rights over him.’” (Bihar al-Anwar 67, 316)
 “O’ you who believe! Eat of the good things (tayyibat) wherewith we have provided you, and render thanks to Allah if it is (indeed) Hu whom you worship” (Al-Baqarah, 2.172).
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُلُوا مِنْ طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ وَاشْكُرُوا لِلَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ إِيَّاهُ تَعْبُدُونَ