Sainthood (Wilaya) in Shi’ite Islam

Prof. Abdulaziz Sachedina
Professor of Religious Studies
University of Virginia

In contrast to their legal status, women’s spirituality plays an important part in Shi’te and Sufi cultures, and women pilgrims are most closely connected with shrines. Women are venerated as saints, especially Fatima (with other members of the Prophet’s family). Shi’ite beliefs about saints are very similar to those of Catholic Christians: Saints are associated with miracles, and are available for intercession. The moving personal story of the lecturer, his spiritual path, and the experiences he experienced as divine intercession, open a window to empathy with a believer’s Islamic faith and spirituality.