The 2010 Yawm-e Ali Lecture at the Ismaili Centre, London was delivered on 14 July by Dr Reza Shah-Kazemi, Reasearch Fellow at The Institute of Ismaili Studies in London. In his lecture titled Imam Ali and the Power of Compassion, Dr Shah-Kazemi explored the role played by Rahma – divine compassion – in the teachings of Hazrat Ali.
He stressed the relationship between intellect and compassion as one of the key polarities in the thought of Imam Ali. Just as the operation of the intellect requires the participation of all the cardinal virtues – compassion above all others, says Dr Shah-Kazemi, likewise, the deeper meaning and transformative power of the virtue of compassion can only be unlocked by the spiritual and moral application of the faculty of the intellect.
About Dr Reza Shah-Kazemi
Founding editor of the Islamic World Report, Dr Reza Shah-Kazemi studied International Relations and Politics at Sussex and Exeter Universities before obtaining his PhD in Comparative Religion from the University of Kent in 1994. He has authored and translated several works, including Justice and Remembrance: Introducing the Spirituality of Imam 'Ali (I. B. Tauris in association with The Institute of Ismaili Studies, 2006) and Doctrines of Shi'i Islam (I. B. Tauris in association with The Institute of Ismaili Studies, 2001). He has also edited a number of collective volumes and published many articles and reviews in academic journals.
Formerly a Consultant to the Institute for Policy Research in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, Dr Shah-Kazemi is presently a Research Fellow with the Department of Academic Research and Publications at The Institute of Ismaili Studies, where he is editing the English translation and edition of the Great Islamic Encyclopaedia (from Persian).