Seyyed Hossein Nasr and Sigheh. Women’s Right in IRI


by Zorumbaa

The Islamist, particularly the Shia sect and those born in a place which used to called Iran are very fortunate with abundance of Anntellectuals! There has been plenty of expositors here and elsewhere about the likes of Charlatan Shariaty, Hogheh-baaz Haji Karim Dabaagh, and the new comers popping up fresh and green from a very well fertilized soil, the likes of Paasdaar Ganji, Paasdaar Saazgaraa, Kadivar, Saaney, et al. And a group apparently headed by Prof. Dibasic and friends and collaborators such as outspoken Sadri twin brothers. They are philosophizing and professing about the future of Iran, as it OUGHT TO BE in their view, and have their blue prints all over the map. One may wonder if these self-proclaimed champions of freedom and democracy or whatever they REALLY stand for are accepted and/or welcomed by the Iranians. The history and records are there and Iranians will never forget the double-dealings and color changing, the atrocity and crimes committed by the like of Haji Dabaagh, Kadivar, and Paasdaars. Credibility cannot be purchased even by a master Chameleon and Maaleh-Kesh.

A notable person, of slightly different cloth who is missing but doing “his job” in the background apparently is a sexist pro gender- apartheid, and a supporter of misogynistic policies of the IRI. A geologist turned Islamic Sufi philosopher with a Harvard PhD in History of Science. A man who his beliefs and dogma is so rigid that all this outstanding academic and scholarly achievement is not enough to excuse him on his specific position and opinion regarding women in Islam, sex, marriage and specific question of Sigheh. His name is Seyed Hossein Nasr.

After Harvard, during the hay days of Iranian rapid move towards “modernization” Nasr returned to Iran as a professor at Tehran University, and then at Arya Mehr University (Sharif University) where he was appointed president in 1972. He also served as Dean of The Faculty of Letters, and Academic Vice-Chancellor of Tehran University from 1968 to 1972. In the 1970s, Farah Pahlavi appointed professor Nasr as head of the” Imperial Iranian Academy of Philosophy,” the first academic institution to be conducted in accordance with the intellectual principles of the Traditionalist School.

Nasr has studied with or under Islamic scholars like Allameh Tabatabai and Seyyed Abdul Hassan Ghazviny. Nasr read and studied several of the major texts of Islamic philosophy under masters such as the al-Asfar al-arbaah of Mulla Sadra and the Sharh-i manumah of Sabziwari and benefited greatly from the invaluable insights and commentaries provided by them orally.

Upon his return to the west, Nasr took up positions at University of Edinburgh, Temple University, and since 1984 has been at The George Washington University where he is now a full time University Professor of Islamic Studies. Nasr was soon recognized in American academic circles as a traditionalist and a major expositor and advocate of the perennialist perspective.” The idea of perennial truth that there is a single universal source for all religions, ranging from Hinduism and Zoroastrianism to Islam and the Baha'i religion. The idea of a single religious truth is more apparent among Sufi mystics, and Nasr strongly believes in mystical dimensions of Islam.

Given the limitation of space I am not going to critical analysis and details of Nasr’s article or a detailed and more comprehensive description of his opinion and standing on women’s issues, like marriage and sex. I leave up to those who have the time and interest. Here I will quote a number paragraphs from “MUTAH OR TEMPORARY MARRIAGE” article by Allamah Tabatabai and Seyyed Hossein Nasr and at the end will ask the question that I need to ask. This article is public and accessible online by using the names as keyword.


“it is definitely established historical fact that at the beginning of Islam, namely between the commencement of the revelation and the migration of the Holy Prophet to Medina, Temporary marriage, called Mutah, was practiced by Muslims along with permanent marriage….. Muslims continued to practice it until it was banned by the second caliph, who threatened those who practiced it with stoning”

“The Shi’ites, however, following the teaching of the Imams of the Household of the Prophet, continued to consider it legitimate as it was during the life time of the Prophet himself”

“in the Qur’an, God says concerning the believers: “And who guard their modesty-Save from their wives or the (slaves) that their right hands possess, for then they are not blame worth, But whose craveth beyond that, such are the transgressors” Qur’an, XXXIII, 5-7.

“It is well known that Mutah marriage was practiced by the Muslims. If Mutah marriage had not been true marriage and women who had married according to it had not been legitimate wives, certainly according to these Qur’nic verses they would have been considered to be transgressors of the Law and would have been forbidden to practice Mutah. It is thus clear that since temporary marriage was not forbidden by the Prophet it was a legitimate marriage and not a form of adultery.”

“We cannot accept the claim that the only thing that the second caliph did was to put into action an order of prohibition and abrogation of Mutah given by the Holy Prophet, for such a possibility is negated by clear words of second caliph that there are two Mutahs..”

“From the point of view of legislation and the preservation of public interest also we must consider the legitimacy of temporary marriage, like that of divorce, one of the noteworthy features of Islam”

“The legitimization of marriage among mankind… is an answer to the instinctive urge for sexual union. Permanent marriage has been continuously practiced among different people of the world…….. (however) there exist throughout the countries of the world, in large and small cities, both hidden and public places where illegitimate sexual union or fornication takes place. THIS IS THE BEST PROOF THAT PERMANENT MARRIAGE CANNOT FULFILL THE INSTINCTIVE SEXUAL DESIRES OF EVERYONE AND THAT A SOLUTION MUST BE SOUGHT FOR THE PROBLEM.”

“Considering the fact that permanent marriage does not satisfy the instinctive sexual URGE of CERTAIN men and adultery and fornication are according to Islam among the deadly of poison …..Islam has legitimized temporary marriage…….”

I am almost near the end but it is so nauseating for me that I stop here.

These statements do not come from a Bee-Savaad Aakhoond, a sick horny Ayatolaah. This is a distinguished scholar, philosopher, an authority in Islam and past president of one of the best universities in Iran during his time and even now. CLEAN YOUR EARS please and OPEN YOUR EYES, these are the thinkers, intellectuals, strategist, part of “ I know what is good for you crowd.” Nasr is talking about the word of Islamic God in Quran, what is Prof. Dabashi and friends position regarding the same words of God? I know I am not getting any answer, but I will ask the questions. Is Nasr gone crazy and is making up these things? People ARE ENTITLED TO KNOW, that is OUR right to know the position of these people on specific issues, these are people of power, influence, and prestige. Does now Prof. Kadivar accepts Nasr’s position? What about other women/family issue such as the inheritance question?

A sex crazed sect that with the power of gun, torture and intimidation protects the status quo and benefits from its monopoly on the Industry of Sex which they have created. The influential defenders of indefensible are out there, do you really want these people run and manage what you do in your bedroom and private life?


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