Ali Illahism (Persian: علی‌اللّهی) is a syncretic religion which has been practiced in parts of Luristan region in Iran which combines elements of Shia Islam with older religions. It centers on the belief that there have been successive incarnations of the Deity throughout history, and Ali Illahis reserve particular reverence for Ali,[1] the son-in-law of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, who is considered one such incarnation.[2] Various rites have been attributed as Ali Illahian, similarly to the Yezidis, Ansaris, and all sects whose doctrine is unknown to the surrounding Muslim and Christian population. Observers have described it as an agglomeration of the customs and rites of several earlier religions, including Zoroastrianism, historically because travelogues were "evident that there is no definite code which can be described as Ali Illahism."[3]

Sometimes Ali-Illahism is used as a general term for the several denominations that venerate or deify Ali, like the Kaysanites, the Alawis or the Ahl-e Haqq/Yarsanis,[4] others to mean the Ahl-e Haqq.[5]

The Karapapakhs are primarily adherents of Ali-Illahism.[6]

In Dabestan-e Mazaheb

The Dabestan-e Mazaheb "School of Religions", a 17th-century Persian book about South Asian religions, presents the Ali Illahians as a sect that respected Muhammad and Ali and discarded the Quran, as it had been compiled under Umar. Its members were said to avoid killing animals and to believe that the rules allowing the killing of some animals had been created by Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman ibn Affan and their followers.[7]

See also


  1. ^ Woulfe Sheil, Lady Mary Leonora; Sheil, Sir Justin (1856). Glimpses of Life and Manners in Persia. p. 199.
  2. ^ Layard, Austen Henry (2010-08-31). Discoveries in the Ruins of Nineveh and Babylon: With Travels in Armenia, Kurdistan and the Desert: Being the Result of a Second Expedition Undertaken for the Trustees of the British Museum. Cambridge University Press. p. 216. ISBN 9781108016773.
  3. ^ Soane, Ely B. (2008). "To Mesopotamia and Kurdistan in disguise with historical notices of Kurdish tribes and the Chaldeans of Kurdistan. (Excerpt)". International Journal of Kurdish Studies: 10. Archived from the original on 2017-03-24. Retrieved 2017-03-23.; Soane, Ely B. (1914). "Of Kurds and their Country". To Mesopotamia and Kurdistan in disguise : with historical notices of the Kurdish tribes and the Chaldeans of Kurdistan (PDF). Boston: Small, Maynard. p. 384. OL 23348805M.
  4. ^ Bruinessen, Martin van. "Religion in Kurdistan" (PDF). Universiteit Utrecht. p. 9. Retrieved 2017-03-30.
  5. ^ Moosa, Matti (1987). "16. The Ahl-i Haqq (Ali Ilahis) – Origins and Identity". Extremist Shiites – The Ghulat Sects. Contemporary issues in the Middle East. Syracuse University Press. p. 185. ISBN 9780815624110.
  6. ^ Olson, James Stuart; Pappas, Lee Brigance; Pappas, Nicholas Charles, eds. (1994). An Ethnohistorical Dictionary of the Russian and Soviet Empires. Greenwoon Press. p. 346.
  7. ^ "An Account of the Ali Ilahían". The Dabistán, or School of Manners. Vol. II. Translated by Shea, David; Troyer, Anthony. 1843. pp. 451–460. Archived from the original on 2017-09-16. Retrieved 2017-03-23.