In a series of sessions, sociologist and religious researcher Emad Afroogh tries to introduce the thoughts of Imam Ali (AS). In the 16th session, he talks about the 25th Khutba of Nahj al-Balagha. Here is a summary of his remarks:
In this Khutba, the Imam (AS) mentions complaints about the people of Kufa, a city in Iraq which was the seat of government at the time and part of the Imam’s (AS) political life was in facing the people of the city.
Imam Ali (AS) says: “O My God they are disgusted of me and I am disgusted of them. They are weary of me and I am weary of them. Change them for me with better ones and change me for them with worse one. O My God, melt their hearts as salt melts in water. By Allah, I wish I had only a thousand horsemen of Banu Firas ibn Ghanm (as the poet says).”
If the rulers of the Islamic society are really following the truth, they know the principles and rules and people will follow them. This is related to the reciprocal rights of people and rulers in Islamic society and Imam Ali’s (AS) remarks about it, which will later discuss.
About how he was treated, Imam Ali (AS) also says in Khutba 26 of Nahj al-Balagha: “I looked and found that there is no supporter for me except family, so I refrained from thrusting them unto death. I kept my eyes closed despite motes in them. I drank despite choking of throat. I exercised patience despite trouble in breathing and despite having to take sour colocynth as food.”