This morning, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution addressed the appreciative and loyal masses in a grand and emotional ceremony commemorating the thirty-fourth anniversary of Imam Khomeini (ra) 's passing. He referred to the late Imam as 'one of the leaders in Iranian history'. He said, explaining the three significant developments the Imam brought about on the level of the nation, the Islamic ummah, and the global community, "The faith and hope of the Imam were the intangible factors and creators of these major historical developments. Every individual and movement with a love for Iran, the national interests, the improvement of the economic situation, the progress of the country and national honour should invest all their efforts in strengthening the faith and hope of the people and society."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei referred to the esteemed Imam as 'the standard-bearer of divine missions during the Era of Recent Armed Ignorance' and added, emphasising the importance of all officials and citizens, particularly the youth, understanding the various aspects of this remarkable figure, "The Imam is not only the Leader of our era but also one of the leaders in Iranian history. No person or movement can erase him from history records or distort him effectively, lengthy and lastingly, for the sun cannot be hidden behind clouds."
He spoke about the remarkable aspects of the Imam's character, including his religious knowledge, faith, piety, strength of character, willpower, divine uprising, revolutionary politics, and ability to bring about transformation in the human system. He continued, "None of these aspects can be found in any other leader in Iranian history. This is why our unique Imam shall always live on, and he shall introduce his luminous face to all loud and clear."
Discussing the unparalleled developments that the Imam brought about in Iran, the Islamic ummah, and the world, the Leader of the Revolution said, "By establishing the Islamic Revolution and its victory at the hands of the people, the Imam transformed the political structure from a monarchy to a democracy, an oppressive and subservient government to an independent system based on national pride, an anti-religious regime to an Islamic system, tyranny to freedom, and a lack of identity to national identity. [He] empowered a nation that had been blinded by foreigners with the miraculous belief of 'we can' that shall solve any present and future problems."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei elaborated on the aspects of the Imam's transformations on the Islamic ummah, including the creation of Islamic awakening, increased readiness within the Islamic ummah, and the prioritisation of the issue of Palestine in the Islamic world. He said, "The Imam breathed life into the dejected body of the Palestinian nation, and now, the International Quds Day has become a stage of support for the oppressed Palestinians, not just in Iran, but also in the capital cities of non-Islamic countries!"
The central focus of the Imam's global transformations was to move away from passivity towards materialism and draw nations' attention towards spirituality. In this regard, the Leader of the Revolution said, "That great personality revitalised spirituality throughout the world. The intense attacks by the political and media centres of those in power against spiritual matters and their crude attempts to promote materialism are a reaction to this transformation."
Speaking to the vast crowds gathered at Imam Khomeini's sacred shrine, the Leader of the Revolution continued his speech by analysing the tangible and intangible factors that aided the esteemed Imam in bringing about his historical transformations.
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei mentioned that the only tangible means the Imam used to convey his messages and words to the people were pieces of paper and audio tapes, emphasising, "The two key intangible factors that permitted the Imam to perform his miraculous actions were faith and hope."
Referring to the words of Shaheed Motahhari after meeting with Imam Khomeini in Paris, he added, "Motahhari, who was a mountain of faith himself, observed four kinds of faith within the Imam: faith in the goal, faith in the path, faith in the people, and, above all, faith in Allah."
The Leader of the Revolution interpreted the Imam's faith in Allah, i.e., fighting Allah's enemies, as having faith and trust in Allah's promises. He added, citing a few verses of the Holy Qur'an, "The Lord has promised that whoever helps Him shall enjoy His aid. He has pledged to steady and strengthen the believers' steps and protect them, to make the truth and all that benefits the people endure, and to cause falsehood to decline and vanish like foam on the water."
He differentiated between the Islam that the Imam believed in and the Islam of capitalism and the eclectic Islam of uninformed intellectuals, continuing, "The Imam believed in the Islam of the book [the Qur'an] and the sunnah, combined with well-founded ijtihad and accurate understanding. He firmly refuted the views of those who claimed to be intellectuals yet were ignorant of [the true] Islam. He also opposed the Islam of traditionalists who rejected political, governmental, and social Islam due to their shallow understanding and promoted irresponsibility."
The Leader of the Revolution addressed another dimension of the Imam's faith, i.e. faith in the people, saying, "With a profound understanding of divine verses, the Imam had a deep trust and faith in the motives and actions of the people, including their votes. In response to some expressions of concern, he stated, 'I know the people better and more than you do.'"
He saw the nation's loyalty to the Imam's path, the perseverance and faith of the martyrs' families, the efforts of the youth, and the large gatherings of people to honour religious and revolutionary matters as evidence of the accuracy and depth of the Imam's understanding of the nation. He added, "The [inclusion of the] term 'republic' in the name of the government – that is, the Islamic Republic – reflects the esteemed Imam's trust and faith in the people."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei gave an example of the depth of Imam Khomeini's fundamental thought regarding a republic and said, "As he stated towards the end of his life, the Imam (r.a.) did not vote for the first president, yet he implemented the president's decisions because he believed in the people."
Elaborating on hope as the second intangible factor over the Imam's several decades of transformative activity, the Leader of the Revolution said hope was a constant driving force and engine behind the esteemed Imam's movement. In the 1940s, he spoke about rising in the way of Allah. In the 1960s, he entered the field of uprising in practice. In the 1980s, he remained steadfast even when engulfed by severe military-security and political storms."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei stated that the Imam's unwavering hope and his refusal to give in to despair were rooted in the faith of his eternal character, and he said, "Just as he mentioned himself, the Imam never despaired, and he believed that when the nation wanted something, it would surely be realised."
Pointing to the mutual and increasing influence of evident faith and true hope in each other, he added hope goes hand in hand with action and cannot coexist with laziness. Those who chose inactivity and complacency as a means to reach their goals have been condemned in the hadiths."
After discussing the Imam's faith and hope, the Leader of the Revolution urged the people of the nation, particularly the energetic and hardworking youth of the country, to follow the teachings of the great Imam to successfully navigate this lengthy path and achieve great things in the future, saying, "Without a doubt, his most important lesson and advice to us is to continue on his path, preserve his legacy, and maintain the three transformations he brought about on a national, ummah, and global level."
He stated that the means and tools needed to continue on the path of the Imam and achieve his goals have changed from those used forty years ago, but he still added, "Of course, the opposing forces have not changed. Just as in the past, the front of the arrogant powers, Zionists, and aggressors are aligned against the Iranian nation today."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei added, "Of course, the difference between today's and yesterday's fronts is that the Iranian nation has become stronger, and they have become weaker."
The Leader of the Revolution stated that forgetting these opposing forces poses a threat to the nation. He said, stressing that whenever we neglect these fronts, we are vulnerable to attack, "The great Imam's transformations have been met with stubborn enemies who harbour malice and hatred – criminals and aggressors – To confront them, the Iranian nation must possess the same intangible qualities as the great Imam – namely, faith and hope."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei addressed the people, youths, elites, revolutionary groups, and political groups, saying, "Whoever loves Iran and its national interests, and [who desire to] improve the economic situation and address the pressing economic and livelihood issues and place Iran in a dignified position in the upcoming world order should work towards fostering faith and hope in the nation."
He pointed out that, contrary to the mistaken beliefs of some, the ideological retreat will not diminish or eliminate the hostility of the arrogant powers and global Zionism towards the Iranian nation. He mentioned, "In many instances, our retreat has only emboldened them to become more aggressive because their ultimate goal is to return Iran to its pre-Revolution state; that is, a time of dependence and loss of identity."
In this regard, His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei continued, "Over the past few decades, there have been individuals in some governments who believed in retreating and making concessions. However, in one such government, the country from which we had retreated issued an indictment against our president and tried him in absentia. In another government that had supposedly, unfortunately, aided the Americans, they named Iran' the axis of evil.'"
He stated that the primary goal of the enemies' efforts was to 'weaken the faith of the people and extinguish the fire of hope in their hearts,' saying, "Preserving [our] independence, dignity, and national interests is contingent upon maintaining faith and hope. Over the past few decades, the obstinate institutions of the arrogant powers and their security, political, and financial arms did everything in their power to undermine [our] faith and hope. While they have succeeded in a few instances, for the most part, they have been defeated and repelled by the Iranian nation, with divine grace."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei noted that the most recent effort by the enemies – until now, at least – were the riots last autumn. He said, explaining their forming components, "These riots were planned comprehensively in the think tanks of Western nations and carried out with the extensive financial, military, and media backing of the Western security agencies, the traitors and mercenaries who turned against their own homeland, and the agents pursuing policies hostile to Iran. Of course, the foot soldiers of this movement within the country were a combination of a few biased and a larger number of uninformed, emotional, and superficial people as well as a group of thugs."
The Leader of the Revolution listed several profoundly hostile acts Westerners committed during the riots. These included explicitly teaching how to make hand grenades through foreign media, promoting separatist slogans and armed movements, and senior politicians from some Western governments taking photos with mercenaries who claimed to be Iranian. Additionally, university and seminary students, police officers, and baseejis were tortured and martyred by the enemy's infantry. He stated, "They thought the Islamic Republic had reached its end and they could use the Iranian nation to serve their goals, but the fools were mistaken again and failed to recognise the Iranian nation."
He mentioned that the enemy's failure was due to the people's vigilance in disregarding the appeals of those who harbour ill-will towards Iran, as well as the active participation of young people in the streets and universities, including the dutifulness of the student baseej and the classes, emphasising all the while, "The enemy's plot was foiled, but everyone should be warned not to be neglectful of the enemy's plots."
Explaining the tactics of the enemy front in stripping the youths of their hope, His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei said, "They are trying to deprive Iranian youths of hope by exacerbating livelihood problems, inflation, and high prices. Firstly, these issues are all solvable and will be solved by the grace of Allah. Secondly, acknowledging the issues should motivate [people] to find solutions and actively support those working towards solving them. Thirdly, apart from these challenges, the country has many positive developments that the ill-wishers do not want to be acknowledged."
He cited the country's advancements in science and technology, the expansion of industrial, agricultural, and transportation infrastructure, the development of human resources, construction efforts in underprivileged and remote regions, progress in international politics, national pride, and military and defensive authority as hopeful and promising indicators of a bright future and said, "The enemy wants these realities to be overlooked so that the Iranian youths do not know about them."
Criticising some people for undermining the hope and accusing others of being ignorant of the facts, the Leader of the Revolution said, "They claim that you are oblivious to the truth, but the reality they desire is the very economical and livelihood struggles that everyone is [already] aware of and experiencing."
The Leader of the Revolution mentioned another method of extinguishing hope in people's hearts: individuals who do not follow the religion and Revolution across various social classes. He said, "This issue is not specific to today. Even in the 1980s, when the fronts were full of believing youths, not only were there individuals in Tehran and the big cities who felt a lack of responsibility to the nation, but they also mocked the nation! This is why we read that when the warriors returned to the big cities, they missed [the warfronts]."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei stated, "Even today, there are people who do not adhere to Islam, the Revolution, and even to the Iranian commitment, but these are not [part of] the Iranian nation. In Madinah al-Nabi, there were also some people whom the Qur'an refers to as munafiqin [hypocrites] or murjifun, meaning spreaders of rumours, fear, and doubt."
His Eminence Ayatollah Khamenei recognised the growth of thousands of resistance cells in mosques and religious organisations throughout the country, the emergence of youths who volunteered to defend the shrines in Syria and national security, the presence of perceptive and resolute seminary students, dedicated activists in the jihad of clarification, and religious aid groups as other positive developments in the proud movement of the nation and its youth, despite the potential for mistakes, adding, "Individuals who are active in seminaries and universities, as well as those who hold a respected social status, must work to bolster the faith and hope of the people by addressing doubts and countering the efforts of ill-wishers to instil pessimism in the youth towards the authorities, the country's political and economic progress, and even towards each other."
The Leader of the Revolution identified another tactic used by the enemy to instil despair amongst the people: 'sowing pessimism towards the elections.' He stated, "I will discuss the elections in the future, but the elections this year are particularly significant because the enemy has already begun its efforts to discredit them, even though they are still nine months away."
At the beginning of the ceremony, Hojjat al-Islam Sayyid Hasan Khomeini, custodian of the sacred shrine of the late Imam (r.a.), described the Islamic Republic system as the most incredible legacy of His Eminence the Imam (r.a.) and declared that the Islamic Revolution is the most people-centric Revolution in the world. He highlighted some of the system's key features, such as its reliance on the people through elections, its pursuit of Islamic objectives through dynamic jurisprudence, and its preservation of national pride through political independence.