What is the reason for the friendship and love for ‘Ali in people’s hearts? Nobody has yet discovered the secret of this love; that is, no one has been able to formulate it, and say that if it were like this then that would follow, or if it were like that then this would happen. However, it does of course have a secret. There is something in the love which dazzles the one who loves and draws him towards it. This attraction and love are the highest degrees of love. ‘Ali is the one whom people’s hearts adore, whom humanity loves. Why? In what does ‘Ali’s extra-ordinariness lie that it incites love and draws hearts towards itself, that it plays the tune of eternal life and lives for ever? What do all hearts find out about themselves through him, and do not feel him to be dead but find him living?
Certainly the basis for love for him is not his physical body, because his body is not now among us and we have not perceived it with our senses. Love for ‘Ali is also not hero-worship, which exists in every nation. It is a mistake, too, to say the love for `Ali is by way of love for moral and human excellence, and that love for ‘Ali is a humanistic love. It is true that ‘Ali was the manifestation of the perfect man, and it is true that human beings love great figures of humanity; but if ‘Ali had had all that human excellence that he had - that wisdom and knowledge, that self-sacrifice and altruism, that humility and modesty, that courtesy, that kindness and mercy, that protection of the weak, that justness, that liberality and love of freedom, that respect for humanity, that generosity, that bravery, that magnanimity and mercy towards his enemies, and, in the words of Rumi: “In bravery you are the Lion of the Lord, In generosity who indeed knows who you are?”, that munificence, benevolence and beneficence - if ‘Ali had had all these, which he did have, but had not had the divine touch in him, it is quite certain that there would not have been the feeling of sympathy and awakening of love that there is today.