Mohammad Fazel Lankarani
For the past 25 years, Grand Ayatollah Fazel Lankarani has been teaching, inter alia, the "Kharij" level at Qum's religious school. His classes are usually attended by over 700 religious experts and students. Part of the lectures are broadcast on the radio for Iranian and non-Iranian audiences.
Subsequent to the demise of Imam Khomeini [p], and Grand Ayatollah Araki [p], Grand Ayatollah Fazel Lankarani was conferred the status of the "first source of emulation" of the Islamic ummah by the Society of Instructors at Qum's religious school.
Mohammad Fazel Lankarani was born in 1930 in Qum. His father was one of the great sages at Qum's religious school (Hozeh Ilmieh Qum). At the age of 13 he started his education in Islamic sciences in Qum's religious school. He rapidly progressed through the various levels and by the age of 19 was able to attend the "Kharij" level, which at that time was taught by Grand Ayatollah Borujerdi. His studentship at this level lasted for 11 years (this level being among the longest and most difficult collection of courses taught at the religious school of Qum). Also, he attended Imam Ruhollah Khomeini's courses for a period of nine years. He learned "interpretation" and "philosophy" in the classes of Ayatollah Tabataba'ie. At the age of 25, Mohammad Fazel Lankarani was formally designated Grand Ayatollah by his teacher Grand Ayatollah Borujerdi.