The Status of Esoteric Imamate as Viewed by the Followers of Berilwiyah Sect

Document Type : Original Article


1 Associate Professor of The Department of Theological Denominations, The University of Religions and Denominations

2 MA in Islamic Denominations and Level 4 in Qom Hawza



Berilwiyah believe in the esoteric caliphate and lordship for the Shiite Infallible Imams. As such, they believe in Imam Ali as the first esoteric caliph and imam, followed by the rest of eleven Infallible Imams. According to them, nomination of the esoteric caliph and imam is done by Allah, hence no role is assigned to people, while apparent leaders and caliphs can be chosen by people. They believe in a number of characteristics for the esoteric caliphs and imams, e.g., knowledge, knowledge of the unseen, priority, courage, sublimeness. Focusing on the status of imamate before the Berilwiyahs, the present descriptive-analytical paper shows that they have many points in common with Shiism.