One reason why we are in this current pathetic state. In the time of the Ottomans, they set the highest standards for who could be Imam, knowing full well that this man would have to carry the honor of Islam and the Muslim community on his back – finding the best of the best to lead the believers. Today, the position is treated as a fallback for those who can’t seem to get their life together, or failed at every other option.
A advert for the position of Imam of the Grand Mosque in Istanbul at the time of Sultan Suleyman (rah) who ruled the Ottoman Empire from 1520 –1566:
1) To have mastered the languages of Arabic, Latin, Turkish and Persian.
2) To have mastered the Qur’an, the Bible and the Torah.
3) To be a scholar in Shari’ah and Fiqh.
4) To have mastered physics and mathematics up to teaching standard.
5) To be a master of chivalry, archery, dueling and the arts of Jihad.
6) To be of a handsome countenance.
7) To have a strong melodious voice.
In this 21st century it is fully acceptable to just pick up an ex drug addict and place him in front of the congregation.