Sheikh Mohsin Ali Najafi: A Life Dedicated to Muslim Unity and Knowledge, Son Remembers

10:12 - March 03, 2024
News ID: 3487402
IQNA – The son of Sheikh Mohsin Ali Najafi recalls his father's lifelong commitment to Muslim unity and knowledge, and how he inspired people with his wisdom and compassion.

Sheikh Mohsin Ali Najafi


Prominent Pakistani scholar Ayatollah Mohsin Ali Najafi passed away on January 9, 2024, in Islamabad.

His son, Hojat-ol-Islam Anwar Ali Najafi, remembers the legacy of his father in an interview with IQNA.

According to the son, Ayatollah Mohsin Ali Najafi was born in 1943 in a village in the Gilgit-Baltistan of Pakistan. He received his early education at his father's school, where his father, Hossein Jan, was renowned as one of the scholars of his time. At the age of 14, he tragically lost his father. Continuing his studies, he moved to a neighboring village, where he studied under a scholar named Seyd Ahmad Mousavi, who came from Najaf.

In 1963, he enrolled at a school in Sindh, also mastering Urdu within a year. He later journeyed to Punjab to pursue further studies at Darul Uloom Jafariya Khoshab before joining Lahore’s Jamiat Al-Muntazar. Seeking advanced education, he ventured to the Najaf seminary in 1966, where he delved into religious sciences under the guidance of Ayatollah Khoei, Shahid Baqer al-Sadr, and other eminent scholars.

Following the rise of the Baath government in Iraq and the ensuing pressure on religious institutions, he relocated to Pakistan, settling in Islamabad. There, he founded Jamia Ahl al-Bayt (AS). Since then, he was actively involved in teaching Fiqh, Usul, Quranic interpretation, philosophy, theology, and ethics.

Ayatollah Najafi also served as the representative of Ayatollah Sistani in Pakistan and held the position of head of the Supreme Council of the Ahl al-Bayt (AS) Assembly of Pakistan.

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At the age of 25, Ayatollah Najafi authored the book Al-Nahj al-Sawī fī Maʿnā al-Mawlā wa-al-Walī  in Arabic. Grand Ayatollah Sheikh Mohammed Mohsen Razi, popularly known as Agha Bozorg Tehrani, reviewed this book, expressing that despite his old age and physical discomforts, reading the book “alleviated his pains,” according to the son.

Continuing his scholarly discourse, Ayatollah Najafi mentored thousands of students, he said, adding, “Many prominent religious and cultural figures in Pakistan today either directly studied under him or were influenced by his teachings.”

“Despite limited resources, he traversed Pakistan extensively, imparting knowledge and skills while actively participating in the construction of schools, mosques, and charitable institutions,” he noted.

Ayatollah Najafi played a pivotal role in disaster relief efforts, overseeing the construction of over 20,000 houses for those affected by floods and earthquakes, regardless of sectarian affiliation, his son said, adding, the "Hosseini Foundation," established under his guidance, coordinated various charitable activities, including support for hospitals and victims of terrorism.

Ayatollah Najafi initiated a visionary plan to empower impoverished families by providing them with housing, sustenance, and vocational training, aiming for self-sufficiency within a decade, the son said, noting that this ongoing initiative stands as a testament to his forward-thinking approach.

In summary, Ayatollah Najafi served as a “unifying figure” within Pakistan's Shia community, embodying kindness and inclusivity, Anwar Ali Najafi added.

Sheikh Mohsin Ali Najafi: A Life Dedicated to Muslim Unity and Knowledge, Son Remembers

Ayatollah Najafi's contributions to religious literature encompass over thirty scientific books, according to the son, who added that among his notable works is Balagh Al-Quran, a commentary on the Holy Quran condensed into a single volume with concise explanations.

Additionally, his ten-volume Tafsir titled Al Kauthar fi Tafsir Al Quran holds prominence within both Shia and Sunni circles as the interpretation has garnered recognition in Pakistan's academic community, with numerous doctoral theses dedicated to its study, he added.

To promote unity between Shia and Sunni communities, he annually organized conferences and prioritized dialogue with Sunni scholars, Anwar Ali Najafi said.

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He noted that his father’s Quran interpretation was crafted in a manner accessible to all readers, transcending sectarian divides as the work not only promoted unity but also celebrated the virtues of Ahl al-Bayt (AS).

In addition, Shaikh Najafi established Hadi TV, a network dedicated to disseminating the teachings of Ahl al-Bayt (AS) while advocating for unity, the son reminded.

The son remembered that his father’s funeral was attended not only by Shia scholars but also Sunni counterparts, along with numerous political figures, underscoring his widespread appeal and influence.