The Ayatollah and his immortality 

June 6, 2017

On Sunday, millions of Iranians marked the 28th death anniversary of Ayatollah Rohullah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Republic. Doubtlessly, he was one of the most consequential figures in the 1970s and 1980s. 

While the Ayatollah is no longer among us, the question arises as to how he managed to reach such a reputation. 
To understand that, one has to bear in mind the following: 

1. For many political and religious analysts, Ayatollah Khomeini was internationally acclaimed simply because of his genuine faith in God as well as courage to stand up to bullying superpowers. 

2. The Ayatollah had deep belief in the people’s prowess and will to bring about changes, and asserted that a nation who is motivated enough and awakened can revolutionize the status quo.    

3. Islamic thinkers argue that the Ayatollah’s panacea for human beings and societies to change was a mash-up of heavenly and earthly forces. It is only through the miraculous mixing of the internal and external sources that a society can be energized so much so that it moves ahead in pursuit of change.

4. A distinction of the Ayatollah was his emphasis on justice. The late messiah saw it impossible for a given society to reach transcendence unless rulers and grassroots coexist in balance, a concept to which many rulers of the contemporary Middle East were alien. 

5. Ayatollah Khomeini’s thorough, deep-rooted perception of religious cause as the engine of political dynamism ignited a series of developments in the 1970s, which were for so long unseen due to sheer disregard for religion in the global community. 

6. An unparalleled trait of the Ayatollah was his soul-searching spirit and high regard for ethics, turning him into a reconciliatory sociopolitical leader, a quality many of his followers chose to die for. 

7. In the international arena, the Ayatollah was an adamant hero to challenge the global arrogance which favored submission and was against awakening the oppressed. To put it differently, he believed that a chain of powers, including capitalist elements and multinational cartels, sought to rule the world. And hence, fighting them was the only way to unshackle human beings.

8. Many are of the belief that Ayatollah Khomeini’s Neither-East-nor-West agenda was in a sense rejection of bifurcating the world into Western and Eastern blocs. In fact, the enlightened Imam conceived of the West-East dichotomy as one of historical determinism, of which the human society needed to get rid. A new system on the basis of public will had to replace the historical determinism and this was not possible unless nations and their elites were awakened. 

9. Ayatollah Khomeini’s look at power and governance revolved around winning hearts and minds of human beings rather than their bodies as he believed that governments’ mission was to penetrate in the souls of human beings rather than imposing themselves upon societies through coercion and guns.

To come up with a conclusion, these days the Iranian nation is commemorating a leader who was among and for the people and who did his best to be close to all walks of the society. His art was to rectify the society on the basis of sublime Islamic teachings. 

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