Allaah says, “Allaah commands you to pay back the ‘amaanat’ to their owners.” “If any one of you were to deposit something with some one then let the one with whom the things are deposited return the deposit to its depositor.” “O mumineen, do not commit breach of trust in your dealings with Allaah and Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws) and do not abuse the trust in the matter of ‘amaanat’ knowingly.”
Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws) says, “Do not commit breach of trust, do not go to excess and do not be deceitful.” “It is your duty to return the ‘amaanat’. He who deceives us is disowned by us.” “It is unlawful for you to shed the blood of one another and to misappropriate the properties of one another.”
Maulaana Ali Ameer ul-Mumineen (sa) says to one of his followers, “Pay back what has been deposited with you and do not commit the breach of trust in your dealings even with those who have abused your trust.” Imaam Ja’far us-Saadiq (as) says, “Return the deposit to its owner; it matters little whether he is a red or a black, a haruri or an ajami, a Syrian or an umawi.” Pay back the ‘amaanat’ even if the owner is your enemy even if he is the murderer of Maulaana Husain (as).”
These quotation from the Qur’an and the traditions make it clear to us, that Allaah and Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws) and the Imaam have ordered us in unequivocal terms to return the deposits to their owners regardless of their being our friends or foes. It is the duty of the mumin to pay back the ‘amaanat’. This keeps up his credit, guards his religion and purifies his soul. If he commits the breach of trust, he loses his credit, and brings disgrace to himself, his religion and his reputation.
As far as the depositor is concerned, he loses nothing of the kind. His loss or gain is a monetary one. If the deposit is not returned to him, he loses some money and if it is returned to him it adds to his capital.
It is then incumbent on every one who fears Allaah and safeguards his self respect that he should pay back the ‘amaanat’. If it is obligatory on us to return the ‘amaanat’ to all sorts of people, how many times more obligatory does it become on us that we should return the ‘amaanat’ which belongs to the Imaam? To commit a breach of trust in your dealings with the Imaam is a dreadful affair and the worst possible sin. Allaah says, “O mumineen, don’t commit breach of trust in your dealings with Allaah and the Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws).” Thus he deceives the Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws), deceives Allaah. Allaah says, “Those who make covenant with Allaah.” “He who obeys the Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws) obeys Allaah. Obey Allaah, obey the Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws) and obey your spiritual hands.” It follows that obedience to the Imaam is obedience to Allaah and disobedience to them is disobedience to Allaah. He who is treacherous to them is treacherous to Allaah and he who is true to them is true to Allaah. He, who pays them their ‘amaanat’, pays the ‘amaanat’ of Allaah to Allaah. If breach of trust is forbidden in general, the breach of trust in our dealings with the Imaam is the worst sin. In short, breach of trust in our dealings with the Imaam belongs to the category of great sins.
This thing is applicable to all classes of the followers of the Imaam and even to the non-followers. For, return of the ‘amaanat’ to its owner and sincerity are incumbent on every mumin. Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws) says, “Religion means sincerity to Allaah, the Imaam and the Mumineen in general. Lack of sincerity to Allaah and the Imaam is impossible. Allaah says, “The weak, the sickly and the poor (who cannot take part in the religious war) are not to be blamed if they are sincere to Allaah and His Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws). Allaah is forgiving and merciful. Nor are those persons to be blamed who come to you for riding animals to carry them (to the battle field) and who return with grief with tears flowing from their eyes when you tell them that you cannot provide them with the animals and when they find that they have no money to pay for them.” These verses clearly show that if the Muslims are unable to join the war they are permitted to give it up but under no circumstances are they allowed to give up sincerity. Cessation of love in one’s heart for Allaah and the Saiyed ul-Ambiyaa Mohammad ul-Mustafaa (saws) and the Imaam is equally impermissible. Imaam Husain bin Ali Ameer ul-mumineen (as) says, “He who lodges in his heart love for us and uses his tongue and his hands in defense of us, will stay with us in the highest regions. He, who loves us at heart and defends us by his tongue but is unable to use his hands, will also be with us in heaven but his rank will be below the rank of the first one. He, who loves us at heart and is unable to use his tongue and his hands in fighting for us, will also be in heaven with us and his rank will be a little lower than the rank of the second person. But the one who can neither use his tongue nor his hands in our favour nor loves us in the heart has nothing to expect from us.”
Thus sincerity to the Imaam and the return of the ‘amaanat’ to them are the best things that we have been enjoined upon to do. He, who fails to do this and deceives them, is cast off from their fold.
O mumineen, beware of being treacherous or deceitful to them. Bear in mind that if one were to return the ‘amaanat’ to the Imaam and show sincerity to them for no other laudable object in view than the acquisition of wealth or making a name for himself and securing himself from the worries of this world even then it will be worth his while to do so. We can easily imagine how much more profitable will it be if one were to do these things for a heavenly reward for which there is no substitute in this world and for securing himself from the frightful punishment of the next world from which none can save him.
We know many men at the lowest wrung of the ladder of life such as workmen, petty traders and laborers who are in no way better than lower animals and who yet are very particular about the return of the ‘amaanat’. In spite of their extreme poverty, they return the ‘amaanat’ not for the sake of religion or for the sake of their belief in a particular code of conduct but for the fear of their being boycotted by the people and put to disgrace by them in consequence of breach of trust.
If this is the way in which low types of people behave towards one another in the matter of the return of the ‘amaanat’ what should then be the behavior of those who have some knowledge of religion, some sense of the code of morality and some idea of self-respect? How can these men risk their position and lose every good thing by committing a breach of trust? If they are not attracted by a heavenly reward and are not afraid of the punishment of the Day of Judgment, even then in their own interest they will never commit the breach of trust.