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Why are images of the prophet and imams allowed

Q:

In sunni sect, images of all kind are forbidden to draw according to several ahadith. I have seen images of the masoomeen that shia religion endorses. And I have also read the fatawa by Ayatollah Sistani in this regard. It says the images are allowed but the opinion that such images are a true representation of the masoomeen is a wrong belief.
My question is, do the images not tarnish the sanctity of the holy figures in question. Also, I would like references from ahadith or the quran which went into the formulation of such fatawa.
W/Salam

A:

Assalamu Alaykum

Thank you for your Question.

Please see:

https://www.sistani.org/english/qa/01282/ for your answer.

Also, the link below:

Imam Ali (as)’s photo on social media

As for your Last Question, to draw a fatwa is not from a single ayah or Hadith, rather a lengthy and prolonged process. It is out of our expertise to provide you with a profound answer.

Best regards,
N.S.Jaffery