Assassinated cleric asserted that Wilayat-e Faqih should be ideologue, not ruler

Morteza Motahhari, an Iranian cleric, philosopher, lecturer, and politician, who was assassinated on May 1, 1979, is considered to have had an important influence on the Islamic revolution of that year and on the ideologies of the Islamic Republic from its inception.

In this clip, broadcast on Iranian state TV during the Islamic revolution period, Motahhari expresses clear and strong opposition to the Wilayat-e Faqih [Rule of the Jurist] system being used to appoint one cleric as the ultimate head of state; this was the system which ended up being chosen, with Ali Khamenei as the current Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic.

Motahhari tells the presenter, “Wilayat-e Faqih, the issue that you raised, does not mean that the Guardianship of the Jurist, for example, should be appointed as a head of state, or for he himself to practically seek to rule and implement his will on the country .  As a matter of fact, the real role of Wilayat-e Faqih in countries – I mean in Islamic countries, and indeed in any Islamic country that is committed and practicing Islam, which recognizes Islam as an ‘ideology’, then Wilayat-e Faqih will have the role of an ideologue, not the role of ruler.”