Saturday, April 28, 2012

Druzes spiritual leaders

This Druze spiritual leader in Lebanon, Abu Muhammad Jawad Waliyya Ad-Din, died.  He is one of the most senior spiritual Druze leaders.  They are distinguished by the round turban.  Like Shi`ite Maraji`, those leaders can't be appointed or selected.  They simply rise with popular and clerical consensus.  He left no heirs because the high spiritual Druze leaders get married but in what is known as "marriage of the eye" or facade marriage, in which the man and the woman don't have sex.  This is seen as an indication of higher devotion.  There is no one in his stature to replace him.  In 1983, during the War of the Mountain against Lebanese Forces militias, he is said to have led Druze forces in battle.  He is nicknamed the Lion of Shuf.