If the Imam of the Time were to ask you: ‘Do you know what an Ismaili Da‘i is?’ would you think of the quick-witted and devoted Shirazi simultaneously debating two Sunni scholars in a hostile environment? Would you think of Sijistani, Kirmani, and Nasir-i Khusraw who merged religion and philosophy to present the esoteric truths of Ismaili Islam? Would you think of daring, lion-hearted Hasan-i-Sabbah, who established an Ismaili fortress state to protect the Imam and his murids? Would you think of Razi, who debated against a philosopher about the Prophethood of Muhammad? Would you think of the strong-willed and erudite Naysaburi scolding his fellow da‘is who misused their position for political gain? The present article is an exploration of the spiritual roles, intellectual contributions, and history of the Ismaili Da‘is, who have been the lifeblood of the Ismaili community for over a thousand years.
Source: Ismaili Gnosis