Leader's Sermons during Eid ul-Fitr Prayers

The following is the full text of the sermons delivered by Ayatollah Khamenei, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, on September 20, 2009 during Eid ul-Fitr prayers in Tehran.

First Sermon

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds. "All Praise is due to Allah, Who created the heavens and the earth, and made the darkness and the light. Yet those who reject faith hold others as equal, with their Nurturer-Lord" [The Holy Quran, 6: 1]. All praise is due to Allah Whom we praise, from Whom we seek help, to Whom we repent, in Whom we believe, and Whom we rely on, and peace and greetings be upon His beloved and noble one, the best among His servants, the protector of His secret, the promoter of His message, our Master and Prophet, Ab-al-Qassem al-Mustafa Muhammad, upon his immaculate, pure and chosen household, and upon those who guide the guided, especially the one remaining with Allah on earth. And greetings be upon the leaders of Muslims, those who guide the oppressed and those who support the faithful.

I would like to congratulate all the brothers and sisters who say prayers, all the people of Iran, all Muslims throughout the world and the entire Islamic Ummah on the occasion of Eid ul-Fitr. Muslims finish the month of Ramadan with enlightenment. The month of Ramadan enlightens and cleanses hearts and souls by fasting, engaging in dhikr, dua and divine prayers, by reciting the Holy Quran and by engaging in many other virtues which religious people benefit from. In fact, from the Night of Qadr onwards, the religious people who engage in fasting begin a new year. During the Night of Qadr, their fate for the whole year is recorded by the divine angels who record our actions.

During the Night of Qadr, one enters a new year, a new stage and in fact, a new life and birth. From this night onwards, one begins to take a path with his provisions of piety. In the middle of this path, certain stages have been determined for us in order to refresh our memory and remind us of certain things. The day of Eid ul-Fitr is one of these stages and therefore, it should be appreciated.

In a sense, Eid ul-Fitr prayers are our appreciation of divine blessings in the month of Ramadan. It is an appreciation of this new birth. During Eid ul-Fitr prayers, we repeatedly say to God, "Make us benefit from all the goods which Muhammad and his household benefitted from". We say to God, "Let us enter the pure paradise of faith, morality and action which you allowed these chosen ones enter". Then we say, "And get us out of all the evils which you helped Muhammad and his household (Your greetings be upon him and them all) get out of".

During Eid ul-Fitr prayers, we ask God to help us get out of the hell of immoral actions, conduct and beliefs from which He protected these great and dear Imams. We illustrate this great goal for ourselves on the day of Eid ul-Fitr and we ask God to help us reach this goal. Of course, we ourselves have a responsibility to make efforts to stay on this straight path. This is what piety is.

One of the great achievements of the month of Ramadan is repentance and returning to Allah the Exalted. In the holy dua of Abu Hamza Thumali, we read, "Let us gather around Mustafa and achieve the position of returning to you". We ask God to help us achieve the position of repentance so that we can return to Him and return from deviant, bad and indecent actions, thoughts and conducts.

In the farewell dua of the auspicious month of Ramadan, Imam Sajjad (a.s.) says to the God of the world, "You are One Who opened a door for Your servants so that they can return to You and You named this door repentance" [Sahifa al-Sajjadiyya, Dua 45]. He says to God that He opened this door for us so that we rush towards His forgiveness and benefit from the blessing of His forgiveness and mercy.

This door is the door of repentance. It is a window to the pure view of divine forgiveness. If Allah the Exalted had not opened the door of repentance to His servants, we sinful servants of God would have been in terrible conditions. People make mistakes and commit sins under the influence of human instincts and temptations. Each of these sins inflicts a wound on our hearts and souls. What would we have done if the path of repentance had not existed?

In Dua Kumayl, the Commander of the Faithful (a.s.) says, "I do not find any refuge and sanctuary for my deeds except when You accept my repentance". If it were not for the issue of repentance and acceptance of our repentance by God the Generous and the Merciful, how could we free ourselves of what we did to ourselves by committing sins, making mistakes, following temptations and carrying the heavy burden of sins? If it were not for repentance, we would not have any refuge and haven. It is Allah the Exalted who has opened the door of this haven - which is repentance - to us. You should appreciate the value of repentance.

A youth runs away from his parents' house because of his ignorance. Then he goes back to his parents' arms and faces their kindness, compassion and caresses. This is repentance. When we return to the house of divine mercy, Allah the Exalted accepts and welcomes us with open arms. We should appreciate the value of this return which naturally happens to religious people.

I saw the images of the presence of youth, teenagers, women and men in Quranic meetings and religious ceremonies where they engaged in dua and dhikr in the entire month of Ramadan. The tears which were shed from the people's faces in paying attention to God are very precious and valuable. These acts mean repentance and we should preserve it.

Our careless hearts make mistakes and errors because of following temptations. The month of Ramadan has offered us the opportunity to cleanse ourselves. This cleansing is very valuable. These tears cleanse hearts, but they should be preserved. All great pains and deadly and dangerous diseases - that is to say, egotism, arrogance, jealousy, transgression, treachery and decadence which are our great diseases - find the opportunity to cure themselves in the month of Ramadan.

In the month of Ramadan, these diseases become treatable. In this month, Allah the Exalted pays attention to us and He has certainly done this already. This year, our month of Ramadan was very good. The meetings - Quranic meetings and the meetings during which people engaged in dhikr, dua and counsel to do good - which were held in the month of Ramadan, the presence of people from different social backgrounds and the presence of different faces [were very good].

How many charitable actions were taken in the month of Ramadan! How many poor people were helped throughout this auspicious month! These are very valuable. Each of these actions gives a new scent to our souls and each of them opens a new door to us. We should preserve these things.

I advise youth to appreciate the value of these soft and enlightened hearts. Such things happen less when one becomes older. Youth benefit more from these characteristics. You should preserve these hearts and souls. You should appreciate the value of saying prayers on time, being present in mosques and reciting and establishing a close relationship with the Holy Quran and the duas which have been narrated by the Imams (a.s.). These duas are the treasure of Islamic teachings.

We should attend to our moral behavior as well. We should attend to our moral behavior as well. Behavior is even more important than action. We should create an environment of brotherhood, kindness and optimism in society. I do not at all agree with creating an environment of pessimism and doubt in society. We should break ourselves of these habits.

The fact that it has become common among newspapers and different media networks - which increase in number and become more complex on a daily basis - to adopt certain methods to make accusations against one another is not a good thing at all. This is not a good thing because it darkens our hearts and the environment in which we live. If the sinful are punished for their sins, this does not rule out the possibility that the environment in society can be one for promoting sins, slandering and accusing other people on the basis of rumors and delusions.

I would like to discuss this issue as well: in a court of law, a certain defendant made an accusation against another person and this was broadcast on TV. I will tell you that this accusation is groundless from the viewpoint of sharia. Whatever the accused says about himself can be proof. If someone says that the statements the accused makes about himself are not proof, this is a load of nonsense and this is absurd.

Whatever confession the accused makes in a court of law and in front of cameras and millions of viewers is acceptable and effective from the viewpoint of sharia, convention and reason. But if the accused wants to say something against another person, then this is not acceptable. The environment should not be filled with slander and suspicion. The Holy Quran says, "Why did not the believing men and the believing women, when you heard it, think well of their own people, and say: This is an evident falsehood?" [The Holy Quran, 24: 12] when you hear that someone is accused, why do you not dispel it and trust one another?

Of course, executive and judiciary organizations have their own responsibility in this regard. Executive organizations should capture criminals and judiciary organizations should sentence and punish them. They should do this by adopting the methods which are provable and which exist in our Islamic and conventional laws. They should not show any negligence in this regard.

But punishing a criminal whose crime has been legally proved is different from accusing a person and making him notorious in society on the basis of speculations, delusions and slander. This should not be done and such an environment is not good. Besides, it is wrong to echo the accusations of others - that is to say, foreigners and those networks which have ulterior motives - against an individual or a number of individuals. It is wrong to echo these foreigners and networks when they say that these individuals have committed an act of treason and that they have made a mistake on certain issues. This is injustice and it is not acceptable.

When did foreign networks show any sympathy to us? When did they want to express the truth about us? How can we trust them to express the truth in this regard? Of course, they make certain statements and claims, but we should not say that they are clarifying the issue. This is not clarification. Rather, this is blurring the environment. Clarification means that officials in the Islamic Republic present their performance sheet to the people in a clear way. This is the meaning of clarification. Officials should certainly do this. But if we exert pressures on such and such a person and accuse them of certain crimes without having solid proof, this is wrong.

Such accusations may be sound, but as long as they have not been legally proved, we do not have the right to express them. If a person accuses another person on the basis of evidence from foreign networks - malicious English networks - then, he is to blame more.

This may make someone on the other side accuse the entire Islamic Republic of things which are below the dignity and position of the Islamic government. These are accusations which some people make against the Islamic government. Slandering a person is a sin and slandering an Islamic government and system is even a greater sin. Dear God, make us move away from sins with our piety.

"In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent the Merciful
I swear by time,
Most surely man is in loss,
Except those who believe and do good, and enjoin on each other truth, and enjoin on each other patience" [The Holy Quran, 103].

Second Sermon

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful‌
All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, and peace and greetings be upon our Master and Prophet, Ab-al-Qassem al-Mustafa Muhammad and upon his immaculate, pure and chosen household, especially upon the Commander of the Faithful, Saddiqat al-Tahera, al-Hassan and al-Hussein- the masters of the youth of paradise - Ali ibn al-Hussein, Muhammad ibn Ali, Ja'far ibn Muhammad, Musa ibn Ja'far , Ali ibn Musa, Muhammad ibn Ali, Ali ibn Muhammad, Hassan ibn Ali al-Askari and Hujjat al-Qaem al-Mahdi, Your representative among Your servants and trustworthy ones in Your land. And greetings be upon the Imams of Muslims, supporters of the oppressed, and those who guide the faithful.

I advise servants of God to fear God.

In the second sermon, the first issue that I deem necessary to discuss is a word of thanks for the great people of Iran because of the greatness that they showed in front of the eyes of people throughout the world on Quds Day. How hard they tried to weaken Quds Day - which is the manifestation of the deployment of truth against evil - over the course of these years.

Quds Day is the manifestation of the deployment of truth against evil and justice against oppression. Quds Day is not only Palestine's day, but also the Islamic Ummah's day. It is the day of Muslims' exclamation against the deadly cancer of Zionism which is killing Muslims with the help of transgressors, usurpers and intruders.

Quds day is not a small event. It is an international day and it has an international message. Primarily, it shows that the Islamic Ummah does not give in to oppression although this oppression may benefit from the support of the greatest and most powerful governments in the world.

How hard they tried to weaken Quds Day and this year, they tried harder than ever. But Quds Day rallies in Islamic Iran and in great Tehran showed the entire world which way the hour hand of the Revolution and the people of Iran is turning. Quds Day showed how determined the people of Iran are. It showed that devising schemes, using tricks, spending money and adopting evil policies cannot affect the morale of the people of Iran.

Western leaders and politicians were deceived by their own media networks during the past few months. They were deceived by their professional analysts in newspapers and media networks. They thought that they can influence the people of Iran. On Quds Day, you showed that they were after a mirage. This is the truth. The truth about the people of Iran is what was shown on the last Friday of the auspicious month of Ramadan - that is to say, on Quds Day.

On this day, it was shown that this greatness and this movement enjoy a vast scope and that it is not particular to Iran. Wherever they had the opportunity, Muslims throughout the world combined Quds Day with their shouts against oppression. Quds Day is a very great day. You did this in the best way possible. Once more, the people of Iran showed that even during sensitive times, they can deliver their message to people all over the world with the loudest and clearest shout.

Sacred Defense Week is about to begin. The Sacred Defense era was the great, religious and national jihad of the people of Iran. The people of Iran managed to strengthen their spirit of national self-confidence through eight years of powerful defense. They managed to make their talents blossom and know their unknown capacities.

During the imposed war, our youth, whether in the armed forces - including the Islamic Republic of Iran Army and the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps - or in the great and popular Basij, managed to introduce such a kind of Iran which had not been introduced for, perhaps, decades or for two, three centuries. If you see that today, our people and our youth are present in arenas of science and technology with their great capacities and talents, a great part of it is because of Sacred Defense. It was during the Sacred Defense Era that the people of Iran became aware of their capacities and their power.

Those who attacked the Islamic Republic promised themselves that they would conquer Tehran in three days, one week, one month. Today, around 30 years have passed from those days, but the people of Iran have become stronger and more powerful on a daily basis. This tree has become stronger and more rooted on a daily basis. All those poor people who had such delusions have been thrown into a dustbin in a corner of the world and all of them have perished. And it will continue to be like this from now on too.

What I would like to say to all our dear people and to the honorable officials - thankfully, both the executive branch and the judiciary branch have started a new era and they are fresh and ready to work - is that everyone should prepare themselves for the decade of progress and justice. We need to make a leap on this path.

We suffer from backwardness in many areas. We cannot reach the desired point by behaving in an ordinary way. We need a leap and this leap requires faith, purity, coordination of activities and cooperation among different forces. The three branches of the government should cooperate with and help one another. The people too should help and cooperate with officials - particularly the officials in the executive branch because they are in the middle of the arena - so that we can take those paths which have not been taken until today and so that we can accomplish the great feats which are ahead of us.

I would like to stress a particular point about the tasks that we should carry out. This point is attention to knowledge. It is a few years now that the scientific movement has begun in the country. Outstanding personalities should not let this movement slow down or, God forbid, stop. You should move forward. Islamic seminaries and universities have a heavy responsibility in this regard. All professors and students have a responsibility on this issue. You should pursue the path of knowledge. If a people cannot make progress in the arena of developing knowledge, making scientific progress and breaking scientific lines, they will face a great disaster.

If you see that some people have the power to show oppression in a deliberate and shameless way, this is because of their knowledge. It is knowledge which has created wealth for them. It is knowledge which has brought about political power and influence for them in different areas of the world. The key to progress is knowledge. You should not let this scientific movement stop.

I would like to raise another point. We named this year "The Year of Reforming the Norms of Consumption". Everyone welcomed this slogan. Officials and the people - we heard the voice of each of them - welcomed this slogan. Experts, outstanding personalities and the individuals who are well-informed in social and economic areas welcomed it as well. They said, "What a correct and good slogan it is".

Well, what happened after that? Unfortunately, the country wasted time as a result of these false excitements. Now, we are at the end of the first half of the year. Of course, reforming the norms of consumption is not particular to one year. It takes many years to be established. I said this during Norouz holidays as well. Perhaps, it takes 10 years for us to do this, but we should begin anyway.

Officials should make efforts, work hard and cooperate with one another in this area. Universities, well-informed personalities and Islamic seminaries have a role each. By Allah's favor, they will play their role. I hope that we can carry out this task with divine assistance, with the determination of the honorable executive officials - who should play a leading and pioneering role in this area - and with the people's help.

"In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
To you, have We granted the fount of abundance,
Therefore to your Lord turn in Prayer and sacrifice,
For he who hates you, he will be cut off" [The Holy Quran, 108].

Greetings be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings‌