9 — The Actions of the Prophet
as a Form of Revelation
An action of the bearer of the revealed law1 either is performed as a matter of piety and obedience or is not. If it is, then if some evidence indicates that it is peculiar to him, it is understood as peculiar to him; but if no evidence so indicates, then the action is not peculiar to him, because God (He is exalted) has said “In the Prophet of God you have had a good example.” Such an act is understood as obligatory by some of our colleagues, while some of them say it is understood as recommended, and others say one should suspend judgment about it. If, however, the action is not performed as a matter of piety and obedience, it is understood as permissible.
The acquiescence of the bearer of the revealed law in a saying constitutes a saying of the bearer of the revealed law, and his acquiescence in an act is as his own act. Whatever was done during his lifetime outside his presence, that he came to know of and did not disown, has the same legal value as an act done in his presence.