Yousef (Joseph) 7
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.
- Justice in arbitration
When the ruler of Egypt faced Yousef and Zuleikha running towards the door, and saw Yousef’s torn shirt from behind, Zuleikha claimed to be innocent and accused Yousef of injustice: قَالَت مَا جَزَاءُ مَنْ أَرَادَ بِأَهْلِكَ سُوءًا إِلَّا أَنْ يُسْجَنَ أَوْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ She said, ‘What is to be the requital of him who has evil intentions for your wife except imprisonment or a painful punishment?’ (Yousef: 25) And Yusuf also gave a short answer to this charge: قَالَ هِيَ رَاوَدَتْنِي عَنْ نَفْسِي He said, ‘It was she who solicited me. (Yousef: 26)
In this scene, the ruler of Egypt asks for intellectual help from others. Does anyone from Zulikha’s relatives provide a logical solution to find out whether Zulikha is right or Yousef, to find out whether Yousef’s shirt was torn while attacking Zulikha or when he was running away from Zulikha? The holy Qur’an says:
وَشَهِدَ شَاهِدٌ مِنْ أَهْلِهَا إِنْ كَانَ قَمِيصُهُ قُدَّ مِنْ قُبُلٍ فَصَدَقَتْ وَهُوَ مِنَ الْكَاذِبِينَ؛ وَإِنْ كَانَ قَمِيصُهُ قُدَّ مِنْ دُبُرٍ فَكَذَبَتْ وَهُوَ مِنَ الصَّادِقِينَ؛
A witness of her own household testified [thus]: ‘If his shirt is torn from the front, she tells the truth and he lies. But if his shirt is torn from behind, then she lies and he tells the truth.’ (Yousef: 26-27)
And the ruler of Egypt, seeing that Yousef’s shirt was torn from the back, realized the story and realized that Yousef was right, and that his wife Zulikha had bad intentions. The ruler of Egypt made a fair judgment and blamed his wife, and apologized Yousef. He was not caught by family prejudice, and did not step on the truth and did not blame Yusuf under the pretext of protecting his family’s reputation. The holy Qur’an reports:
فَلَمَّا رَأَى قَمِيصَهُ قُدَّ مِنْ دُبُرٍ قَالَ إِنَّهُ مِنْ كَيْدِكُنَّ إِنَّ كَيْدَكُنَّ عَظِيمٌ؛ يُوسُفُ أَعْرِضْ عَنْ هَذَا وَاسْتَغْفِرِي لِذَنْبِكِ إِنَّكِ كُنْتِ مِنَ الْخَاطِئِينَ؛
So when he saw that his shirt was torn from behind, he said, ‘This is [a case] of you women’s guile! Your guile is indeed great! Joseph, let this matter alone, and you, woman, plead for forgiveness for your sin, for you have indeed been erring.’ (Yousef: 28-29)
Fair judgment and not being encumbered by love and hatred, and not violating the right under the pretext of preserving the sanctity and honor of one’s family, nation, and tribe, is so important that Imam Sajjad, peace be upon him, considers it a sin to judge unfairly between different people; which deprives a person of justice. He says that if someone considers a wrongdoer superior to a righteous person, because that wrongdoer is one of his relatives, this is the same prejudice that causes sin and falling from justice:
الْعَصَبِيَّةُ الَّتِي يَأْثَمُ عَلَيْهَا صَاحِبُهَا أَنْ يَرَى الرَّجُلُ شِرَارَ قَوْمِهِ خَيْراً مِنْ خِيَارِ قَوْمٍ آخَرِينَ،
وَلَيْسَ مِنَ الْعَصَبِيَّةِ أَنْ يُحِبُّ الرَّجُلُ قَوْمَهُ وَ لَكِنْ مِنَ الْعَصَبِيَّةِ أَنْ يُعِينَ قَوْمَهُ عَلَى الظُّلْمِ؛
The prejudiced causes sin when considers the evildoers of his own tribe to be superior to the good ones of other tribes.
And loving the members of one’s own tribe is not an example of reprehensible prejudice; however, helping the members of one’s tribe to oppress others is considered reprehensible prejudice. (Kafi, volume 2, page 308)
- The result of blaming and slandering others
The holy Qur’an narrates that following the incident between Zuleikha and Yousef, Egyptian women began to speak ill of Zuleikha:
وَقَالَ نِسْوَةٌ فِي الْمَدِينَةِ: امْرَأَتُ الْعَزِيزِ تُرَاوِدُ فَتَاهَا عَنْ نَفْسِهِ، قَدْ شَغَفَهَا حُبًّا، إِنَّا لَنَرَاهَا فِي ضَلَالٍ مُبِينٍ؛
Some of the townswomen said, ‘The chieftain’s wife has solicited her slave boy! He has captivated her love. Indeed we see her to be in manifest error.’ (Yousef: 30)
Slandering and blaming others for inappropriate work has several possible forms:
- If the reprimanded person has committed that unworthy act: the reprimander has committed backbiting, which is one of the major sins, and the holy prophet said: الْغِيبَةُ أَشَدُّ مِنَ الزِّنَا. فَقِيلَ: يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَ لِمَ ذَاكَ؟ قَالَ: صَاحِبُ الزِّنَا يَتُوبُ فَيَتُوبُ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ، وَ صَاحِبُ الْغِيبَةِ يَتُوبُ فَلَا يَتُوبُ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ، حَتَّى يَكُونَ صَاحِبُهُ الَّذِي اغْتَابَهُ يُحِلُّه؛ Backbiting is worse than adultery. They asked why? He said: Because the one who commits adultery repents and God forgives his repentance, but when the one who commits backbiting repents, God does not forgive his repentance until the person who is the victim of this backbiting forgives him. (Khasa’el, volume 1, page 63)
- If the person being blamed has not committed that inappropriate act: reprimanding him is also a slander in addition to backbiting, and until the consent of that person is obtained, the sin of the reprimanding will not be cleared.
In addition to these, according to the words of the messenger of God, the divine tradition is that; مَنْ عَيَّرَ مُؤْمِناً بِشَيْءٍ، لَمْ يَمُتْ حَتَّى يَرْكَبَهُ Whoever blames a believer for doing something, he himself will commit that act before he dies (Kafi, volume2, page 356).
In the story of Yousef and Zuleikha, we can see that according to the same divine tradition, the women who blamed Zuleikha were themselves affected by this story. The holy Qur’an reports this incident:
فَلَمَّا سَمِعَتْ بِمَكْرِهِنَّ أَرْسَلَتْ إِلَيْهِنَّ وَأَعْتَدَتْ لَهُنَّ مُتَّكَأً وَآتَتْ كُلَّ وَاحِدَةٍ مِنْهُنَّ سِكِّينًا وَقَالَتِ اخْرُجْ عَلَيْهِنَّ فَلَمَّا رَأَيْنَهُ أَكْبَرْنَهُ وَقَطَّعْنَ أَيْدِيَهُنَّ وَقُلْنَ حَاشَ لِلَّهِ مَا هَذَا بَشَرًا إِنْ هَذَا إِلَّا مَلَكٌ كَرِيمٌ؛ قَالَتْ فَذَلِكُنَّ الَّذِي لُمْتُنَّنِي فِيهِ وَلَقَدْ رَاوَدْتُهُ عَنْ نَفْسِهِ فَاسْتَعْصَمَ وَلَئِنْ لَمْ يَفْعَلْ مَا آمُرُهُ لَيُسْجَنَنَّ وَلَيَكُونًا مِنَ الصَّاغِرِينَ؛
When she heard of their machinations, she sent for them and arranged a repast, and gave each of them a knife, and said [to Joseph], ‘Come out before them.’ So when they saw him, they marvelled at him and cut their hands [absent-mindedly], and they said, ‘Good heavens! This is not a human being! This is but a noble angel!’ She said, ‘He is the one on whose account you blamed me. Certainly, I did solicit him, but he was continent, and if he does not do what I bid him, surely he shall be imprisoned and humbled.’ (Yousef: 31-32)