Yousef (Joseph) 2
اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ بِجَمِیعِ مَحَامِدِه کُلِّهَا عَلَی جَمِیعِ نِعَمِهِ کُلِّهَا… اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ مالِکِ الْمُلْکِ مُجْرِی الْفُلْکِ مُسَخِّرِ الرِّیاحِ فالِقِ الاْصْباحِ دَیّانِ الدّینِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمینَ اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی حِلْمِهِ بَعْدَ عِلمِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی عَفْوِهِ بَعْدَ قُدْرَتِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی طُولِ اَناتِهِ فی غَضَبِهِ وَهُوَ قادِرٌ عَلی ما یُریدُ
Praise is to God with all his praises, for all his blessings. . . Praise is to God, the owner of the property, the operator of the orbit, the bender of the wind, the glory of the morning, the religion of the beliefs, lord of the worlds; praise is to God for his dream after his knowledge and thank God for forgiveness after his power, and praise be to God for his long patience in his wrath and he is capable to do what he wills
و نشهد أن لا اله الا الله وحده لا شریک له، و أَنَّ محمداً عبده و رسوله ارسله بالهدی و دین الحق لیظهره علی الدین کله و لو کره المشرکون اوصیکم عبادالله و نفسی بتقوی الله و اتباع امره و نهیه، و اخوفکم من عقابه
And we bear witness that there is no god but God alone, without partner, and that Muhammad is his servant and messenger, he sent him with guidance and the religion of truth, that he might proclaim it over all religion, even if the polytheists hated it.
- The importance of secrecy
The advice that prophet Ya’qub offers to the loyal Yousef is secrecy and not revealing one’s secrets to the others:
قَالَ يَا بُنَيَّ لَا تَقْصُصْ رُؤْيَاكَ عَلَى إِخْوَتِكَ فَيَكِيدُوا لَكَ كَيْدًا إِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ لِلْإِنْسَانِ عَدُوٌّ مُبِينٌ
he said, ‘My son, do not recount your dream to your brothers, lest they should devise schemes against you. Satan is indeed man’s manifest enemy. (Yousef: 5)
Everyone has issues in their personal and social life that others should not know about, because if others find out about his secret, that person’s social reputation will get damaged. Therefore, if someone, for any reason, gets hold of that secret information, he should not disclose it, and if he does, it is treason. The hidden information of people is their secrets and the secrets of people are trusts, so trust should not be betrayed.
Prophet Mohammad says: المجالس بالأمانة إلا ثلاثة مجالس: سفك دم حرام، أو فرج حرام، أو اقتطاع مال بغير حق “The words spoken in private meetings are confidential and should not be disclosed, except in three cases: murder, rape, and destruction of other people’s property.” According to this words of the prophet of Islam, in cases where there is a conspiracy to destroy the rights of others, it is not permissible to keep a secret and not to inform others, but in other cases, it is necessary to keep the secret. It is well known that the root of this word of the prophet Mohammad in both contexts is respecting the rights of others, both where one should not keep secrets and where one should keep those secrets.
Being secretive is one of the characteristics of the God almighty. Although God is aware of everyone’s secrets, he never reveals the secrets of the servants. Because he is a “satar” that is, he covers the flaws. In the family, the husband and wife should keep each other’s secrets and cover each other’s flaws. The interpretation of the Qur’an about wives in the family is that: هُنَّ لِبَاسٌ لَكُمْ وَأَنْتُمْ لِبَاسٌ لَهُنَّ “they are a garment for you, and you are a garment for them” (Baghare: 187).
- Divine will, dominant over all powers
The Qur’an says that Yousef’s brothers threw him into the well: ذَهَبُوا بِهِ وَأَجْمَعُوا أَنْ يَجْعَلُوهُ فِي غَيَابَتِ الْجُبِّ؛ So when they took him away and conspired to put him into the recess of a well, We revealed to him, (Yousef: 15). Then Yousef was sold at a low price in the slave market and became a slave: وَشَرَوْهُ بِثَمَنٍ بَخْسٍ دَرَاهِمَ مَعْدُودَةٍ وَكَانُوا فِيهِ مِنَ الزَّاهِدِينَ And they sold him for a cheap price, a few dirhams, for they set small store by him (Yousef: 20). And then he was thrown into prison to preserve his virtue and chastity: ثُمَّ بَدَا لَهُمْ مِنْ بَعْدِ مَا رَأَوُا الْآيَاتِ لَيَسْجُنُنَّهُ حَتَّى حِين Then it appeared to them, after they had seen all the signs [of his innocence], that they should confine him for some time (Yousef: 35).
Quitting the request is necessary for eternal life; when the reputation accumulates, it becomes the essence of life;
Innocence is not a less sin in the court of love; Yousef went to prison from his virtue;
After all the problems that were created for Yousef and brought him down in terms of social status, God elevated him and made him the leader of the community: وَكَذَلِكَ مَكَّنَّا لِيُوسُفَ فِي الْأَرْضِ يَتَبَوَّأُ مِنْهَا حَيْثُ يَشَاءُ نُصِيبُ بِرَحْمَتِنَا مَنْ نَشَاءُ وَلَا نُضِيعُ أَجْرَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ That is how We established Joseph in the land that he may settle in it wherever he wished. We confer Our mercy on whomever We wish, and We do not waste the reward of the virtuous (Yousef: 56).
Man should rely on God in all his affairs and ask God for goodness and mercy in all his affairs. Imam Ali, peace upon him, said in a profound speech: عَرَفْتُ اللهَ سُبْحَانَهُ بِفَسْخِ الْعَزَائِمِ، وَحَلِّ الْعُقُودَ، نَقْضِ الْهِمَم I got to know God by breaking wills, untying knots, and changing decisions (Nahj-al Balaghe, Hekmat: 250).
- Honor in the God side
We see in the story of Yousef that the cause of the enmity of Yousef’s brothers with him and their conspiracy by throw him into the well was their tendency to get respect and love of their father to gain social honor due to the social status of the prophet Ya’qub in the society. The holy Qur’an says:
إِذْ قَالُوا لَيُوسُفُ وَأَخُوهُ أَحَبُّ إِلَى أَبِينَا مِنَّا وَنَحْنُ عُصْبَةٌ إِنَّ أَبَانَا لَفِي ضَلَالٍ مُبِينٍ؛ اقْتُلُوا يُوسُفَ أَوِ اطْرَحُوهُ أَرْضًا يَخْلُ لَكُمْ وَجْهُ أَبِيكُمْ وَتَكُونُوا مِنْ بَعْدِهِ قَوْمًا صَالِحِينَ؛
When they said, ‘Surely Joseph and his brother are dearer to our father than [the rest of] us, though we are a hardy band. Our father is indeed in manifest error.’ ‘Kill Joseph or cast him away into some [distant] land, so that your father’s attention may be exclusively towards you, and thereafter you may become a righteous lot.’ (Yousef: 8-9)
Yousef’s brothers were looking for glory through false acts. They wanted to achieve their worldly goals by oppressing their brother, while the holy Qur’an considers honor and humiliation in the world to be in the hands of God alone and says: قُلِ اللَّهُمَّ مَالِكَ الْمُلْكِ تُؤْتِي الْمُلْكَ مَنْ تَشَاءُ وَتَنْزِعُ الْمُلْكَ مِمَّنْ تَشَاءُ وَتُعِزُّ مَنْ تَشَاءُ وَتُذِلُّ مَنْ تَشَاءُ بِيَدِكَ الْخَيْرُ إِنَّكَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ Say, ‘O Allah, Master of all sovereignty! You give sovereignty to whomever You wish, and strip of sovereignty whomever You wish; You make mighty whomever You wish, and You degrade whomever You wish; all choice is in Your hand. Indeed You have power over all things.’ (Al Omran: 26)
The innocent off-springs of the prophet Mohammad, peace upon them, believed that the way to achieve dignity is in the service of God and they say: من اراد عزا بلا عشیره و غنی بلا مال رهیبه بلا سلطان فلینتقل عن ذل معصیه الله الی عز طاعته؛ A person who seeks honor without relying on the relatives and wants wealth without money and glory and targets glory without kingdom must change the path from the humiliation of sin to the honor of obeying God (Mizan-al Hekmat, volume 6, page 291).
And the holy Qur’an considers it possible to achieve worldly honor with righteous deeds and pure words and says: مَنْ كَانَ يُرِيدُ الْعِزَّةَ فَلِلَّهِ الْعِزَّةُ جَمِيعًا إِلَيْهِ يَصْعَدُ الْكَلِمُ الطَّيِّبُ وَالْعَمَلُ الصَّالِحُ يَرْفَعُهُ وَالَّذِينَ يَمْكُرُونَ السَّيِّئَاتِ لَهُمْ عَذَابٌ شَدِيدٌ وَمَكْرُ أُولَئِكَ هُوَ يَبُورُ Whoever seeks honour [should know that] honour entirely belongs to Allah. To Him ascends the good word, and He elevates righteous conduct; as for those who devise evil schemes, there is a severe punishment for them, and their plotting shall come to naught (Fater: 10).
Imam Ali, peace upon him, condemns the actions of those who want to achieve their goals by oppressing others. Through Imam Ali achieving even the very holy goal through cruelty to other people is unacceptable. In response to the people who gave him advice and suggested ways to win against the opponents of the government, he says: أَتَأْمُرُونِّي أَنْ أَطْلُبَ النَّصْرَ بِالْجَوْرِ فِيمَنْ وُلِّيتُ عَلَيْهِ؟ وَ اللَّهِ لَاأَطُورُ بِهِ مَا سَمَرَ سَمِيرٌ، وَ مَا أَمَّ نَجْمٌ فِي السَّمَاءِ نَجْماً Do you advise me to gain victory and success in politics at the cost of oppression and stepping on the rights of weak people? I swear to God, as long as there is night and day in the world, as long as there is a star in the sky, I will not do such a thing.