Sayyid Ali Al-Husayni Al-Sistani

His Eminence Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Al-Husayni Al-Sistani is the Supreme Religious Authority (al-marjiʿ al-aʿlā) of the Twelver Shia Muslims worldwide. He studied under the most prominent scholars of the seminaries of Najaf and Qom, such as Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Abulqasim Al-Khoei and Sayyid Husayn al-Burūjurdī. Throughout his studies, he was known for his scholarly method, quick wit, and critical thought. At the young age of 31, he was given testaments of ijtihad by the seminary’s scholarly giants – a rare occurrence, especially at such a young age.

His Eminence began teaching both fiqh and uṣūl at the level of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) and continued for over 30 years. After Grand Ayatollah al-Khoei passed away, many of the believers began to follow His Eminence as a religious authority (marjiʿ taqlīd). His prominence as a marjiʿ grew as more of the older generation of marājiʿ passed away, until he became the most widely followed marjiʿ for Shia Muslims worldwide.

Shaykh Muhammad Isḥāq al-Fayyāḍ

His Eminence Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Muhammad Isḥāq al-Fayyāḍ is a grand scholar and Religious Authority (marjiʿ) for the Twelver Shia Muslims worldwide. His Eminence was the son of a rural farming family in a remote village in Afghanistan. His father recognized his brilliance at a young age, sending him to a neighbouring village to study reading, writing, and Quran at the young age of five. Over the years, he graduated in his studies from the remote village, to a small seminary in another neighbouring village, to the City of Mashhad, Iran.

Finally, at the age of 18 His Eminence moved to the Holy City of Najaf to begin his studies under its prominent scholars. Most notably, His Eminence was a student of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Abulqasim Al-Khoei, having reported his seminars on uṣūl in a multivolume book titled “Muḥāḍarāt fī Uṣūl al-Fiqh.” His Eminence became a religious authority (marjiʿ taqlīd) followed by the Shia public after Grand Ayatollah al-Khoei passed away.

Shaykh Bashīr Ḥusayn al-Najafī

His Eminence Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Bashīr Ḥusayn al-Najafī is a grand scholar and Religious Authority (marjiʿ) for the Twelver Shia Muslims worldwide. He is the scion of a renowned scholarly family from Lahore, Pakistan. At a young age, he began his religious teachings at the hands of his grandfather, uncle, and other prominent scholars in his hometown. At the age of 22, His Eminence moved to the Holy City of Najaf to continue his seminary education.

There, he studied under the seminary’s most esteemed scholars, including Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Abulqasim al-Khoei and Sayyid Muhammad al-Rawḥānī. In 1974, His Eminence began teaching at the level of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) and continues teaching to this day. His contributions to the Islamic disciplines and seminary include approximately 40 books, some of which have yet to be published.

Sayyid Jaʿfar al-Hakeem

Sayyid Jafar al-Hakeem is a prominent professor and public intellectual from the Islamic Seminary of the Holy City of Najaf, Iraq. He currently teaches Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in fiqh and uṣūl, as well as seminars in epistemology, philosophy, theosophy, and theology. In addition to his scholarly work, Sayyid al-Hakeem is a prominent Iraqi public intellectual. He was imprisoned and tortured by the Saddam regime alongside the rest of the al-Hakeem family in 1983. He appeared as a witness in the trial of Saddam Hussein, testifying to the cruel sectarian persecution of Shia scholars and scholarly families. He often speaks on issues of religious identity, pluralism, civic engagement, and contemporary issues.

Sayyid Ahmad al-Ashkiwari

Sayyid Ahmad al-Ashkiwari is a professor of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in fiqh, uṣūl, and kalām. Alongside his scholarly activities, Sayyid al-Ashkiwari serves in a supervisory role in numerous pioneering projects of the Islamic Seminary in the Holy City of Najaf, including the Ṭībah Center and the Najaf Online Seminary for Women. In addition, he oversees the seminary’s preaching project, which includes the seminary’s educational activities during the Arbaʿīn pilgrimage season. Sayyid al-Ashkiwari studied in the seminaries of the holy cities of Najaf and Qom, under the tutelage of esteemed scholars such as the Late Shaykh Mirzā Jawād al-Tibrīzī, Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Ḥusayn Vaḥīd Khorāsānī, Ayatollah Shaykh Muhammad Baqir al-Irawānī, and Ayatollah Shaykh Hādī al-Rāḍī.

Sayyid Muneer al-Khabbaz

Sayyid Muneer al-Khabbaz – an eminent scholar, thinker, and author – was born in Qatif, Saudi Arabia. At the age of 14, Sayyid Muneer travelled to the Holy City of Najaf to begin his training within the Islamic seminary. He is a student of renowned scholars such as Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Abulqasim al-Khoei and Grand Ayatollah Mirza Jawād Tabrīzī. He later studied under the tutelage of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Sīstānī, benefitting much from his lessons in the principles of jurisprudence, as well as his extensive examination of modern sciences and their correlation with Islamic disciplines. Sayyid Muneer is the author of numerous publications, including scholarly texts as well as books and essays for a general readership.

Sayyid Muhammad Sadiq al-Khirsan

Sayyid Muhammad Sadiq al-Khirsan is a professor of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in the Islamic Seminary of Najaf. He is the scion of a prominent scholarly family in Najaf, having been nurtured by his grandfather Ayatollah Sayyid Hasan al-Khirsan from a young age. He studied under the tutelage of esteemed scholars such as Grand Ayatollah Shaykh Ali al-Gharawi and Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Sīstānī. He is a prolific author, having published over twenty books on topics of jurisprudence, history, and ethics.

Shaykh Ḥasan al-Jawāhirī

Shaykh Ḥasan al-Jawāhirī is a professor of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in the Islamic Seminary of Najaf. He is a member of a long line of scholars and jurists descendant from the grand scholar and marjiʿ of his time, Shaykh Muhammad Ḥasan al-Najafī, who authored the book “Jawāhir al-Kalām”- from which the family derives its name. Shaykh Ḥasan al-Jawāhirī graduated from the College of Fiqh in Najaf in 1971.

Simultaneously with his academic studies at the College of Fiqh, he would both attend and teach courses in the Islamic Seminary in Najaf. Shaykh Ḥasan al-Jawāhirī continued his learning under some of the most esteemed scholars of the seminary, including Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Abulqasim al-Khoei, Mirza Jawād al-Tabrīzī, and Shaykh Waḥīd al-Khorāsānī.

Sayyid Muhammad Ali Baḥr al-ʿUlūm

Sayyid Muhammad Ali Baḥr al-ʿUlūm is a professor of Advanced Intermediate Studies (suṭūḥ ʿulyā) in the Islamic Seminary of Najaf. Alongside his seminary teaching and studies, Sayyid Muhammad Ali Baḥr al-ʿUlūm dedicated his time to academic studies, receiving a Master’s Degree in Sharīʿah and Law from the Islamic College of Lebanon. He studied Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) under grand contemporary scholars such as Grand Ayatollahs Shaykh Waḥīd al-Khorāsānī and Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem.

Shaykh Muhammad Bāqir al-Īrawānī

Shaykh Muhammad Bāqir al-Īrawānī is a professor of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in fiqh and uṣūl. He has been teaching at the level of Advanced Seminars and Advanced Intermediate Studies (suṭūḥ ʿulyā) for over forty years, and his lectures have been adapted into several multi-volume textbooks. He is a student of some of the Najaf Seminary’s most prominent scholars, including Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Abulqasim al-Khoei, Sayyid Ali al-Sīstānī, Sayyid Muhammad Bāqir al-Ṣadr, and Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem.

As the circumstances in Iraq continued to worsen due to the Iran-Iraq war, Shaykh al-Īrawānī migrated to Qom, where he continued his scholastic life. He returned to Iraq in the aftermath of the fall of the Saddam Regime in 2003. He is the descendant of a lineage of scholars going back to al-Fāḍil al-Īrawānī, a prominent scholar of the late 19th century.

Shaykh Muhammad Hādī al-Rāḍī

Shaykh Muhammad Hādī al-Rāḍī is a professor in the Islamic Seminaries of Najaf and Qom, and has been teaching at the level of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) for over thirty years. He began his studies at an early age in Najaf. He studied under some of the most prominent scholars of the twentieth century, including Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Abulqasim al-Khoei, Sayyid Muhammad Bāqir al-Ṣadr, Sayyid ʿAbdulṣāḥib al-Hakeem, and Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem.

In 1980, the political circumstances in Iraq forced him – along with many other scholars – to migrate to Qom, where he continued his teaching. He returned to Iraq after 2003, and he is currently one of the Najaf Seminary’s most prominent professors, with hundreds of students attending his classes held within the Holy Shrine of Imam Ali (a).

Shaykh Muhammad al-Sanad

Shaykh Muhammad al-Sanad is professor of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in the Islamic Seminaries of Qom and Najaf. He began his journey of religious scholarship when he left his academic studies in the United Kingdom and travelled to Qom, Iran, to study in its seminary. He benefited from many of the Qom Seminary’s high-ranking scholars, including Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Muhammad al-Rawḥānī, Sayyid Muhammad Riḍā al-Gulpaygānī, Mirza Jawād al-Tabrīzī, and Shaykh Waḥīd al-Khorāsānī. Upon the insistence of his teachers, he began teaching Advanced Seminars in 1990, and has been continuously teaching since. Shaykh al-Sanad’s writings and reports of his seminars have resulted in over 50 published books, ranging from fiqh and uṣūl to history and theology.

Sayyid Jawād al-Khoei

Sayyid Jawād al-Khoei is the Secretary General of al-Khoei Institute in Iraq, as well as a member of a number of theological and religious organisations focusing on interfaith dialogue. In 2012, he received the prestigious award for peace from the Foundation of Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East, presented at the House of Lords, England. He is also the UNESCO Chair for the Development of Interreligious Dialogue Studies in the Islamic World at the University of Kufa. Sayyid Jawād is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the International Islamic University of Science in Amman, Jordan. He is the grandson of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Abulqasim al-Khoei.

Sayyid Muhammad Ḥusayn al-Hakeem

Sayyid Muhammad Ḥusayn al-Hakeem is a professor of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in fiqh and uṣūl in the Islamic Seminary of Najaf, Iraq. He is a member of the esteemed al-Hakeem scholarly family, being the son of the Late Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem. He studied Advanced Seminars under both his father and Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Ḥusaynī al-Sīstānī. He also led the office of his father before he passed away in 2021, directing the work of schools, orphanages, missionary activities, and other charitable causes. He was imprisoned and tortured by the Saddam regime alongside the rest of the al-Hakeem family in 1983.

Sayyid Ḥusayn al-Hakeem

Sayyid Ḥusayn al-Hakeem is a professor of Advanced Seminars (baḥth al-khārij) in fiqh and uṣūl in the Islamic Seminary of Najaf, Iraq. He is a member of the esteemed al-Hakeem scholarly family, being the son of Ayatollah Sayyid ʿAlāʾ al-Dīn al-Hakeem and grandson of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Muḥsin al-Hakeem. He was imprisoned and tortured by the Saddam regime alongside the rest of the al-Hakeem family in 1983. There, he began attending the Advanced Seminars of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem. After his release, he moved to Qom to study in its seminary under renowned scholars such as Grand Ayatollahs Mirza Jawād al-Tabrīzī and Shaykh Waḥīd al-Khorāsānī. He began teaching at the level of Advanced Seminars in the Qom Seminary, and continued to do so in Najaf after moving back in 2003.

Sayyid Aḥmad al-Ṣāfī

Sayyid Aḥmad al-Ṣāfī is a representative of the Supreme Religious Authority Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Sīstānī and Religious Trustee (previously Secretary General) of the al-ʿAbbās Holy Shrine in Karbala. His trusteeship of the shrine began when all four of Grand Marājiʿ in Najaf (Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Ali al-Sīstānī, Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem, Shaykh Muhammad Isḥāq al-Fayyāḍ, and Shaykh Bashīr Ḥusayn al-Najafī) authorised him and two other scholars to form a committee to oversee the shrines of Karbala in the direct aftermath of the US invasion of Iraq in 2003.

He has overseen numerous charitable, academic, and cultural initiatives led by the al-ʿAbbās Holy Shrine across Iraq. He is also professor of Advanced Intermediate Studies (suṭūḥ ʿulyā) in the Islamic Seminary in Najaf, Iraq.

Shaykh ʿAbdulmahdī al-Karbalāʾī

Shaykh ʿAbdulmahdī al-Karbalāʾī is a representative of the Supreme Religious Authority Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Sīstānī and Religious Trustee (previously Secretary General) of the Imam Ḥusayn Holy Shrine in Karbala, Iraq. His trusteeship of the shrine began when all four of Grand Marājiʿ in Najaf (Grand Ayatollahs Sayyid Ali al-Sīstānī, Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem, Shaykh Muhammad Isḥāq al-Fayyāḍ, and Shaykh Bashīr Ḥusayn al-Najafī) authorized him and two other scholars to form a committee to oversee the shrines of Karbala in the direct aftermath of the US invasion of Iraq in 2003. He has overseen numerous charitable, academic, and cultural initiatives led by the Imam Ḥusayn Holy Shrine across Iraq.

Sayyid Rashīd al-Ḥusaynī

Sayyid Rashīd al-Ḥusaynī is professor of Advanced Intermediate Studies (suṭūḥ ʿulyā) in the Islamic Seminary in Najaf, Iraq. He became a prominent religious TV personality after appearing for more than a decade on numerous religious programs after 2003. He heads the al-Muṣṭafā Institute for Religious Guidance and Awareness. He is also the founder of al-Mujīb, a website and mobile phone application for answering religious inquiries.

Sayyid ʿAlāʾ al-Mūsawī

Sayyid ʿAlāʾ al-Mūsawī is professor of Advanced Intermediate Studies (suṭūḥ ʿulyā) in the Islamic Seminary in Najaf, Iraq. He served as the Director of the Shia Endowment Office – overseeing all Shia shrines, mosques, and holy places in Iraq – for over 5 years. He is also the founder and director of multiple religious and charitable organisations and schools in and outside of Iraq, such as al-ʿAqīlah Charitable Schools in Iraq. He served as the representative of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Ḥusaynī al-Sīstānī in the United Arab Emirates and Oman. Aside from his seminary activities, he is also the resident scholar of Masjid al-Ṣāḥib, delivering weekly sermons there.

Shaykh Ḥusayn al-Yāsīn

Shaykh Ḥusayn al-Yāsīn is a professor in the Islamic Seminary in Kāẓimiyyah, Iraq. He studied under the Islamic Seminary’s most renowned contemporary scholars, including Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Muhammad Saeed al-Hakeem and Ayatollah Sayyid Muhammad Riḍā al-Sīstānī. He is also the resident scholar of al-Yāsīn Mosque in Kāẓimiyyah, neighbouring the al-Kāẓimayn Shrine. He regularly holds educational seminars for seminary students and for the general public. Shaykh Ḥusayn al-Yāsīn serves as the representative of Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali al-Ḥusaynī al-Sīstānī in Kāẓimiyyah. He hails from the renowned al-Yāsīn scholarly family, and his maternal grandfather is Sayyid ʿAbdulḥusayn Sharaf al-Dīn.