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ʿĀshūra (10th Muḥarram): A Day of Joy or Grief?

Much confusion surrounds this day. Some Muslims treat this occasion as a day of celebration and joy, and a time where special dishes are prepared. Conversely, some spend the very same day, beating and injuring themselves, and marking it as a day of sadness and mourning.

All praise belongs to Allāh, the Lord of the Worlds, and may the Peace and Blessings of Allāh be upon his Messenger, his family and on all of his companions.

Throughout the year Allāh (subḥānahu wa ta`āla) grants His servants with ample opportunities to have their past sins forgiven and to start anew. One of these special occasions is closely approaching us, known as `Āshūra. Much confusion surrounds this day. Some Muslims treat this occasion as a day of celebration and joy, and a time where special dishes are prepared. Conversely, some Shi’ites spend the very same day, beating and injuring themselves, and marking it as a day of sadness and mourning. In this short article, I hope to dispel some of the myths surrounding this day and explain the position of Ahl as-Sunnah with regards to the above two practices. I have divided the article into three parts. In the first part, I have gathered some of the aḥādīth regarding the merits of `Āshūra; I have made an effort to distinguish between the authentic and the weak narrations. Then in the following two sections, I discuss the innovation of taking `Āshūra as a day of mourning and the innovation of taking it as a day of joy, respectively.

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Some Authentic Aḥādīth Regarding `Āshūra

  1. `Ā’īshā (raḍī Allāhu anhā) said, “The people of Quraysh used to fast on the day of `Ashūra in the pre-Islamic days. When the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) migrated to Madīnah, he observed this fast and commanded others to observe it. But when fasting during the month of Ramaḍān was made obligatory he left the [fast of] `Āshūra (i.e. it was no longer obligatory);1 so whosoever wished to observe this fast, did so, and whosoever wished to leave it, did so.”2
  2. Abū Musā al-Ash`arī (raḍī Allāhu anhu) said, “The day of `Āshurā was one that the Jews respected and treated as a day of festival. The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) instructed us: ‘You should also observe fast on this day.’3
  3. Humayd b. `Abd ar-Raḥmān narrated that he heard Mu`āwiyah b. Abū Sufyān (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) say, while delivering a sermon on the pulpit on the day of `Āshūra in the year he came for Hajj, “People of Madīnah, where are your scholars? I heard the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) say: ‘This is the day of `Āshūra. Allāh has not made fasting on this day compulsory on you, but I am fasting. So whosoever wishes to observe the fast from amongst you, should do so, and whoever does not wish to observe it, may do so.’”4
  4. Ibn `Abbās (raḍī Allāhu anhu) said: “When the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) came to Madīnah, he found the Jews fasting on the day of `Āshūra. He asked: ‘What is this [that you are doing]?’ They replied: ‘This is a righteous day. On this day Allāh saved the Israelites from their enemies, and so Moses, on this day, observed a fast.’ The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘I have a greater right on Moses (alayhis salām) than you.’ So, he observed the fast [on that day] and ordered the Muslims to also fast.’5 6
  5. Ar-Rab`ī b. Mu`awadh (raḍī Allāhu anhā) said: “The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) sent an envoy to the village of the Anṣār in the morning of the day of `Āshūra announcing: ‘Whoever has eaten something should not eat but complete the fast, and whoever is observing the fast should complete it.’” She further said: “Since then we fasted regularly on that day and also make our sons fast. We used to make toys of wool for the boys and if anyone of them cried for food, we would give them these [toys] until it was time to break the fast.”7
  6. `Abd Allāh b. `Umar (raḍī Allāhu anhu) narrated: “The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) observed the fast on the day of `Āshūra and ordered others to also fast. When fasting during Ramaḍān was made compulsory, he left it.” `Abd Allāh would not fast on this day unless it coincided with his [normal days of] fasting.8
  7. Ibn `Abbās (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) narrated: “I do not know the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) singling out any days for fasting, and considering it more excellent than another, except for this day [the day of `Āshūra] and that month – meaning the month of Ramaḍān.”9
  8. Abū Qatāda al-Anṣārī (raḍī Allāhu anhu) narrated that the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “Fasting three days every month and [fasting] the whole [month] of Ramaḍān every year is a perpetual fast. The fast of the day of `Arafah, [I consider it to] expiate the sins of the preceding and the coming year. The fast of the day of `Āshūra, [I consider it to] expiate the sins of the preceding year.”10 11
  9. Ibn `Abbās (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) narrated that when the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) fasted on the day of `Āshūra and commanded that it be observed as a fast, they (his Companions) said to him: “Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam), it is a day which the Jews and Christians hold in high esteem.” Thereupon the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “When the next year comes, Allāh willing, we will observe fast on the ninth.” The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) died before the advent of the next year.12 13
  10. Abū Mūsā (raḍī Allāhu anhu) narrated that the people of Khaybar, most of whom were Jews, observed the fast on the day of `Āshūra and treated it as a festive day. Their women would wear ornaments and beautiful dresses. The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “You (only) observe fast on this day.”14

Some Weak Aḥadīth Regarding `Āshūra

  1. Ibn `Abbās (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) narrated that the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “Fast on the day of `Āshūra and differ from the Jews; fast a day before it or a day after it.”15 16 [Weak]
  2. Ibn ‘Abbās (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) reports that the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “He who fasts on the day of `Arafah, his fast will be a compensation for the sins of two years, and he who fast in the month of Muḥarram will receive the reward of thirty fasts for each fast.”17 18 [Fabricated]
  3. Abū Hurayrah (raḍī Allāhu anhu) and others narrate: “One who increases [his spending] on his family on `Āshūra, Allāh will increase it for him throughout the year.”19 20 [Weak]

The Innovation (Bid`ah) of Commemorating `Āshūra as a Day of Mourning
On the 10th of Muḥarram (the day of `Āshūra), in the year 61 A.H. the Prophet’s (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) beloved grandson al-Ḥusayn b. `Alī b. Abī Ṭālib (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) was martyred. Undoubtedly the murder of the grandson of the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) was a sad day in Islamic history. However, he was not the first to be martyred; rather, he was preceded by many great companions who were also killed unjustly, including `Umar, Uthmān, al-Ḥusayn’s own father, `Alī b. Abī Ṭālib and his brother al-Hassan (raḍī Allāhu anhūm). After the death of Alī b. Abī Tālib (raḍī Allāhu anhū), some of the companions pledged allegiance to al-Ḥasan (raḍī Allāhu anhū), regarding whom the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “This son of mine is a chief, and Allāh will make peace between two large groups of Muslims through him.”21

After a short period he was also martyred and some tribes wrote to his brother al-Ḥusayn (raḍī Allāhu anhu) promising him support and allegiance if he was to come to them at Kūfa. Ibn `Abbās and Ibn `Umar (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) both advised al-Ḥusayn against accepting their invitation as they felt that the people inviting him were treacherous and untrustworthy. Al-Ḥusayn (raḍī Allāhu anhū) relying on the words of the Kūfans set out for the city with his family and followers. On the way he was deserted by his followers and betrayed by the Kūfans. Consequently, he was left with a small band consisting of his family members and friends (a total of 72 people) in the middle of the sandy desert of Karbala fighting against the governor of Kūfa, `Ubayd Allāh b. Ziyād, and his troops of more than 4000 men. The entire group was massacred on the 10th of Muḥarram. It was after this incident that the Shi’ites, who considered Al-Ḥusayn (raḍī Allāhu anhū) as the third Imām and rightful successor of the Prophet, began to take this day as a day of grief and sadness, mourning the fact that they were not present at the battle to fight and save al-Ḥusayn and his family.

Ibn Taymiyyah writes: “Satan took the opportunity with the death of al-Ḥusayn (raḍī Allāhu anhū) to introduce two innovations: the innovation of showing sadness and mourning on the day of `Āshūra by slapping, screaming, crying and lamenting, and [the innovation of] cursing the Ṣahābas (companions of the Prophet).” He then reminds the reader that wailing and excessive mourning over past calamities was clearly prohibited by Allāh and His Messenger. Allāh (ṣubhānahu wa ta’ālā) says in the Qur’ān:

We will try you with fear and hunger, and loss of wealth and lives, and fruits; but give glad tidings to those who are patient. Who, when a misfortune overtakes them, say: ‘To Allah we belong and to Him we shall return.’ It is these on whom descend blessings and mercy from their Lord, and it is they who are rightly guided.22

Also the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “He who slaps his cheeks, tears his clothes and follows the ways and traditions of the Days of Ignorance is not one of us.”23 In another ḥadīth the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “There are four characteristics among my people that belong to the pre-Islamic (jāhiliyyah) period which they have not abandoned: boasting of high rank, reviling other peoples’ genealogies, seeking rain by stars, and wailing.” He (further) said: “If the wailing woman does not repent before she dies, she will be made to stand on the Day of Resurrection wearing a garment of brass and an armour of mange.”24

Some of the Shi’ites—in addition to public processions of ceremonial chest beating, wailing, injuring oneself and cursing Abū Bakr, `Umar (raḍiyallāhu anhumā) and the rest of the companions—avoid all manifestations of joy during this month. They refrain from eating meat and avoid getting married or wearing new clothes during this month and especially during this day. Images of men and small boys slashing themselves with razors or knives, allowing their blood to run freely over their bodies is common among some of the extreme Shi’ites. Others, recognizing the gruesome nature of this act, have opted out of self-mutilation and resorted to donating their blood. Many Shi’ites believe that taking part in these mourning rituals absolves them from their sin. A popular Shi’ites saying says, “A single tear shed for al-Ḥusayn washes away a hundred sins!”

The Innovation of Showing Joy and Happiness During This Day

To counteract the extreme position of some of the Shi`ites, another extreme group called “the Nawāṣib” took this day as a day of happiness. The Nawāṣibs, which consisted mainly of the Khawārij, held animosity against al-Ḥusayn (raḍī Allāhu anhū) and the Ahle al-Bayt. They celebrated this day by wearing new clothes, cooking special food and spending extra money on their family. The first sign of the appearance of the Khawārij was during the lifetime of the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam). Abū Sa`īd al-Khudrī (raḍī Allāhu anhū) narrated: “We were in the company of the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) while he was distributing the spoils of war; there came to him Dhul-Khuwaysarah, from the tribe of Tamim, and he said: ‘Messenger of Allāh, do justice!’ Upon this the Prophet (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘Woe to you! Who would do justice if I do not do justice? You would be unsuccessful and incur a loss if I do not do justice.’ Upon this `Umar ibn Khattāb (raḍī Allāhu anhū) said: ‘Messenger of Allāh, permit me to strike off his neck.’ The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘Leave him; he has companions [who would outwardly look to be so religious and pious] that one of you would consider his prayer insignificant when compared to their prayer, and his fast [insignificant when] compared to their fasts. They would recite the Qur’ān but it would not go beyond their collar-bones. They would pass through Islām just as an arrow passes through its prey. He would look at its iron head, but would not find anything there. He would then see at the lowest end, but would not find anything there. He would then see at its grip but there too he would not find anything. He would then look at its feathers and would find nothing stick to them [as the arrow would pass so quickly that nothing would stick to it] neither excrement nor blood. They would be recognized by the presence of a black man among them whose upper arms would be like a woman’s breast, or like a piece of meat as it quivers, and they would come forth at the time when there is dissension among the people.’”Abū Sa`īd (raḍī Allāhu anhu) said: “I testify to the fact that I heard it from the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam), and I testify to the fact that `Alī b. Abī Tālib (raḍī Allāhu anhu) fought against them and I was with him. He gave the orders for that man and he was sought for; when he was brought, I looked at him and he was exactly as the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) had described.”25

The Shi`ites and the Khawārij opposed each other by introducing an innovation in the religion. So while one group lamented and mourned on this day the other group celebrated and made it a day of happiness. As for the Ahl as-Sunnah they oppose both of these groups, neither making it a day of celebration nor a day of mourning. This is the established practice of the companions and the pious predecessors, including the four Imāms: Imām Abū Hanīfah, Imam Mālik, Imām ash-Shāfi’ī and Imām Aḥmad (raḥimahum Allāhu).

The Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “You must follow my sunnah and the sunnah of the rightly-guided caliphs. Hold on to it and stick fast to it. Avoid newly invented matters [in the religion], for every newly invented matter is an innovation, and every innovation is a misguidance.”26

Ibn Taymiyyah writes in his Fatāwā: “As for cooking special foods, wearing new clothes, applying kohl, spending extra money on the children, doing special prayers, having a special bath…all of this is a wretched innovation (bid`ah) which the Messenger of Allāh (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) never practiced nor did the rightly guided caliphs, and neither was it recommended by any of the great Imāms such as, Mālik, at-Thawrī, al-Layth b. Sād, Abū Hanīfah, al-Awzāī, ash-Shāfi’ī, Aḥmad b. Hambal, Ishāq b. Rāhūyeh (raḥimahum Allāhu), nor by other such scholars. Rather some of the later followers started to instruct in some of these things and claimed that there were some authentic aḥādith supporting their view. But these people are clearly mistaken and are in error according to the people of knowledge.

Imām Aḥmad was asked about the ḥadīth: “One should spend on his family on the day of `Āshūra” and regarded it as unauthentic.

In fact the best narration they have is what is reported from Ibrāhīm b. Muḥammad b. al-Muntashir from his father that he said: “It reached us that one who increases [his spending] on his family on [the day of] `Āshūra, Allāh will increase it for him throughout the year.” Sufyān b. ‘Uyaiynah said: “Ibrahīm b. Muḥammad was from Kūfa and he did not mention from whom he heard it or how it reached him. It is most likely that the one who related this [to him] was someone from the people of Bid`ah who hates the companions and wants to oppose the Rāfidhah with lies. So they oppose corruption with corruption and an innovation with an innovation.”27

To conclude, what is clearly established from the Sunnah is the fasting on the 9th and 10th of Muḥarram. As for mourning, displaying sadness, or celebrating by making special foods, wearing new clothes, etc. then it is all innovation.

Finally, I leave you with the statement of Imām Mālik: “He who introduces an innovation (Bid’ah) in Islām, regarding it as something good has claimed that Muḥammad (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam) has betrayed his trust to deliver the message. As Allāh says: ‘Today have I completed your Dīn (religion)’. Whatever was not part of the Dīn during the time of the Prophet cannot be considered as part of the Dīn today.”28

He also said: “Nothing will benefit the later ones from this Ummah, except that which benefited the earlier ones (i.e., the companions).”29

Allāh knows best.

May the Peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muḥammad (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam), his family, and his companions.

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Notes:

[1] See Ibn al-Qayyim, Zād al-Ma`ād, Volume two, page 68, Mu`assasah al-Risālah, 1424 A

[2] Agreed Upon

[3] Agreed Upon

[4] Agreed Upon

[5] Agreed Upon

[6] Imām Aḥmad reported a similar ḥadīth on the authority of Abū Hurayrah with the additional words: “On this day the ship [of Noah] settled on [Mount] al-Judī.” This is a weak narration due to the presence of `Abd aṣ-Ṣamad b. Ḥabīb, who is weak, and Ḥabīb b. `Abd Allāh, who is unknown. Ibn Kathīr in his Tafṣīr (2/448) stated that this was a strange report.

[7] Agreed Upon

[8] al-Bukhārī and Aḥmad

[9] Agreed Upon

[10] Muslim, Aḥmad, Abū Dāwūd and Ibn Khuzaymah

[11] The predominant view among the scholars is that it expiates minor sins, as for major sins, repentance is required. This was explicitly expressed by an-Nawawī in al-Majmū` (6/382) and Ibn Taymiyyah in al-Fatāwā al-Kubrā (4/428)

[12] Muslim, Aḥmad, Abū Dāwūd and Ibn Mājah

[13] Imām an-Nawawī in his commentary to this ḥadīth writes: “This is a clear statement from Ibn `Abbās that according to him `Āshūra is on the ninth of Muḥarram…The majority of early and later scholars are of the opinion that `Āshūra is on the tenth of Muḥarram. From those who held this view are: Sa`īd b. al-Musayyib, al-Ḥassan al-Baṣrī, Mālik, Ishāq and others. This is the apparent meaning of the ḥadīth, and the proper understanding of the word.”

Ibn al-Qayyim was of the view that Ibn `Abbās did not differ on this issue and had only told the questioner to fast the ninth, since it was already assumed that he would be fasting the tenth. (Ẓād al-Ma`ād 2/75)

[14] Muslim

[15] Aḥmad, Ibn Khuzaymah, al-Ḥumaydī, at-Tahāwī in Ma’ānī al-Āthār, al-Bazzār, Ibn `Adī in al-Kāmil, al-Bayhaqī in al-Kubra and ash-Shu`ab

[16] This ḥadīth has been graded weak by numerous scholars. Ash-Shawkānī said: “This report in Aḥmad via Dāwūd b. `Alī from his father from his grandfather was narrated by Ibn Abī Laylā and therefore is weak and rejected (munkar).”
Muḥammad b. Abi Laylā is known to have an awful memory and was graded weak by Aḥmad, Ibn Ma`īn, and others. See: Tahdhīb al-Kamāl (25/622) and Miẓān al-I`tidāl (3/No. 7825). Likewise, Dāwūd b. `Alī, is also weak. Ad-Dhahabī writes in al-Mizān (2/13): “He is not an authority.”
Al-Bazzar writes: “The ḥadīth is reported from ibn `Abbās (raḍī Allāhu anhū) with different wordings. We do not know anyone narrating: “Fast a day before it or a day after it,” except Dāwūd b. `Alī from his father from Ibn Abbās from the Prophet (ṣallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam).
`Atā and others reported from Ibn ‘Abbās as a saying of his (Mawquf) with a different wording.
On the authority of ibn Jurayj, who was informed by Atā from ibn Abbās who said: “Fast the ninth and the tenth and differ from the Jews.” (`Abd ar-Razzāk (7839), al-Bayhaqī (4/287) and aṭ-Ṭahāwī in Sharḥ Ma`ānī al-Āthār (2/78).

Ibn Rajab graded this narration authentic. (al-Laṭā’if, pg. 108)

Ibn Hajr, Ibn al-Qayyim, al-Mubārakpurī and others, who deemed the ḥadīth in Aḥmad as acceptable, mentioned three levels of fasting during these days:

  1. Fasting on the 9th/10th and 11th. (This being the best form)
  2. Fasting on the 9th and 10th.
  3. Fasting on the 10th only.

According to the Ḥanafī School fasting just on the tenth is disliked (makrūh) and this was also the opinion of Ibn `Abbās (raḍiyallāhu anhu) and Imām Aḥmad (Iqtiḍā’ aṣ-Ṣirāṭ al-Mustaqīm 1/420). Ibn Taymiyyah was of the view that it was not makrūh (al-Fatāwā al-Kubrā 4/461).

[17] aṭ-Ṭabrāni in as-Saghīr

[18] There are several problems with this chain. Ad-Dhahabī accused al-Haytham b. Habīb, one of the narrators, of falsehood. As for Salām aṭ-Ṭawīl, he is well known among the hadith scholars for fabricating ahādith. Ibn Karrās said: “He is a liar.” Ibn Ḥibbān said: “He narrates fabrications from trustworthy people.” Al-Hākim said: “He narrates fabricated ahādith.” Additionally, Layth b. Abī Salīm, another narrator in the chain, is also weak. From a textual point of view there is another problem, one of the narrations mentioned by aṭ-Ṭabarānī in his al-Kabir, with the same chain, ends with “or every day he has thirty blessings.” instead of “thirty days”.

[19] Al-Bayhaqī in ash-Shu`ab, al-Uqaylī in aḍ-Ḍu’afā, Ibn `Adī in al-Kāmil, Ibn al-Jawzī in al-Illal and others

[20] Al-Bayhaqi argued that although the ḥadīth is weak it can be strengthened by supporting channels. This claim is true if all the channels are only slightly weak, but a study of the channels, demonstrate that they are extremely weak and cannot be strengthened by one another. All of the channels have individuals either accused of fabricating or known to be extremely weak. It is for this reason that, ad-Dāraqutnī, ad-Dhahabī, Ibn Taymiyyah, al-Haythamī and others regarded this ḥadīth as weak. Ibn al-Jawzi regarded it as a fabrication.

[21] al-Bukhārī

[22] Surah al-Baqarah: 155-157

[23] al-Bukhārī

[24] Muslim

[25] Muslim

[26] Abū Dāwūd, Aḥmad and at-Tirmidhī

[27] Ibn Taymiyyah, Majmū`ah al-Fatawā, Volume 13, page 169, Dar al-Wafā, 1426 A.H.

[28] al-I`tisām, ash-Shāṭibī

[29] Ibn Taymiyyah, al-Qā’idah al-Jalīlah

 

About Abū ‘Abd Allāh I. Damiel

19 comments

  1. anybody..out there?

    Bism Allah ar-Rahman ar-Raheem

    Asalaam alaikom w rahmatu Allahu w Barakatu.

    Dear humanity and with in that, the muslims.

    This is a plea and call for help:

    First let me state a of verses from the book;
    And as it ashura and may Allah preserve al husayn and forgive him all of the ummahs matyrs.ameen.

    Verily Allah is with me, and He will guide me.

    Ameen to that for us all

    Just a reminder we have been ordered to order the good and forbid the evil, with heart then tongue, and as a last result with hand, in order to heal and change the world for the better.

    As to the plea and in following in the advice of the one sent to the universe as a mercy, as to trust in Allah, but make sure one ties his camel; therefore with that said through the grace of Our Lord Allah, i’m attempting such.

    I’m facing an ordeal and threatened of being sectioned if not initially as such. I’m not sure if it has got anything to do with foolishily being defiant and standing up for myself and what i believe in, either by mentioning at work that i was considering signing up to a hub service on our company’s intranet, that we were not asked for our consent or even asked what we thought about an external company having access to our information…etc. or may be it was being defiantly authoritive in a pleasant way towards an upholder of the law ie a police officer; to whom i refused rightfully not to give him details of a resident at where i also work. Or even so may be it was for also refusing to sign a standing order at my bank and perhaps and sorry to the on the floor workers, for telling them that the banks were murderers and thieves. Reason for that and may Allah forgive me, was due to initially being told the SO was cancelled and even so the direct deductions that i intended to set up to pay the lump sum to my ex-landlord, was set up as a SO of the lump sum to be taken out every month..etc. or is it even mentioning the abnormal word and topic of God, as it is the right and values and principles of nearly everybody, if not everyone to talk about what they are all about…etc.

    As to a forementioned topic, that is what i am labeled mad for ie speaking and describing and searching for my problems through the problem maker and giver of solutions…etc. what else, there is most probably a whole lot of reasons affecting us all, Allah knows best.

    This is just a plea to anyone out there who may be able to assist or may happen to know any body that can? Crazy, a reputable journalist even?! Willing to pay you to take parts of my insignificant story.

    With that said, all our stories affect each other one way or the other, so i would like to add yesterday the departed, perhaps me today or after or even you, if not then, then sooner or later, and then the children, and then on and on…etc.when is it going to all stop?!

    Are we going to support one another?

    Sorry got to go as i wait what to do as i assume that the police are coming to my house after at twelve twenty a few minutes back my doctor and another man turned up unexpectedly to my house today on ashura after i kindly asked them i would get back to them.

    Oh they do not speak to me even many months ago after trying to contact them…etc.

    Anyway got to go.please make dua if anything.
    In haste again.
    Peace

  2. We cry for Husayn (AS) so did the Prophet of Islam (S)
    AUTHORS(S):
    Yasser al-Madani

    We cry for Hussain (AS) …So did the Prophet of Islam (S)
    By Yasser al-Madani
    Every year, Muslims around the world commemorate the tragedy of Karbala. They attend mourning meetings and processions in which the story of Karbala is retold, lamentations are held and special poetic readers using dramatic techniques and symbolism recite eulogies to mark the events of the day of Ashura. All these commemorative meetings not only serve to convey the events and message of Karbala but also provide opportunities for us to learn about Islam in general.

    We commemorate Ashura’ to symbolise and express our grief and emotions towards the martyrdom of Imam al-Hussain (AS), to keep Imam al-Hussain’s (AS) cause alive in our hearts and to be committed to his cause. Also, we want to extract lessons from the tragedy of Karbala and apply them to our daily lives. We want to pay our condolences to the Holy Prophet (S) and the Ahlul Bayt (AS). You might then ask why we do not commemorate the death of the Holy Prophet (S) who has a much higher rank than Imam al-Hussain (AS). The answer to this is that although we do commemorate and mourn the death of the Holy Prophet (S), it is the way and circumstance in which Imam al-Hussain (AS) was martyred which makes all the difference, the fact that he was martyred for refusing a government headed by the wretched Yazid, who drank, gambled and indulged in many corrupt practices, the fact that those who savagely slaughtered Imam al-Hussain (AS) called themselves Muslims is what makes us mourn and lament his martyrdom the way we do.

    Imagine, it is afternoon on the day of Ashura’. Imam al-Hussain (AS) is standing on the blood-drenched soil of Karbala in the heat of the scorching sun awaiting to meet his beloved. His head is wounded and blood is streaming slowly down his holy face soaking his blessed beard. He looks around, searching for members of his family and his companions, only to find them brutally slaughtered and slain like sacrificial lambs, lying there on the ground soaked in blood. He hears the innocent crying and wailing of the children and the women. Tears flow down his holy face. He takes a piece of cloth to wipe the blood from his face, whereupon an archer from the army of Yazid (may Allah’s curse be upon him) shoots a triple-headed arrow, which lodges into Imam al-Hussain’s (AS) heart.

    He pulls out the arrow causing blood to gush out. The Holy Imam is thirsty. He cries: “O Allah, I am thirsty”, in the meantime another man approaches and shoots an arrow which thrusts into Imam al-Hussain’s (AS) throat quenching his thirst. Hilal bin Nafi’ was reported as saying: “By God I never saw a person getting killed with his own blood all over his body in a better state than al-Hussain. I was so overwhelmed by the radiance of his face that I refrained from contemplating killing him.” Even when the accursed Shimr approached Imam al-Hussain (AS) to severe his blessed head, he said: “When I approached Hussain ibn Ali and my eyes fell on him, the light of his face so gripped me that I forgot my intention to kill him.” It is reported that when Imam al-Hussain was killed, the sky rained down blood.1 It has been recorded that Imam Ja’far as-Sadiq (AS) has said:

    “…For no one the heavens wept for forty days save Yahya and Hussain…”2

    Show me such a spectacle of human greatness in an event other than Karbala and I will commemorate its memory instead of Karbala! How can someone hear all this and not cry and mourn; even those who are not Muslims shed tears when they hear this tragedy. Even the heavens wept for Imam al-Hussain (AS).3

    Let me ask you a question, if a Muslim cries over the passing away of their own relatives, then how can they not cry over the grandson of the Messenger of Allah (S)? As one of the greatest British historians, Edward Gibbon, once said: “In a distant age and climate, the tragic scene of the death of Hussain will awaken the sympathy of the coldest reader.”4

    Furthermore, crying for Imam al-Hussain (AS) is considered seeking nearness to Allah (SWT) for the tragedy of Karbala is bound to the great sacrifice which Imam al-Hussain (AS) endured for the sake of Allah (SWT) and for Islam. It is only when your heart is soft and absorbable that you feel the sense of closeness to Allah (SWT). The Holy Qur’an praises crying and those who cry for a legitimate cause. The Holy Qur’an describes many of the Prophets and their followers when they cried, “When the verses of the Most Gracious were recited unto them, they fell down prostrating and weeping”5

    Moreover, we cry over the martyrdom of Imam al-Hussain (AS) for the Holy Prophet (S) wept for Imam al-Hussain (AS) as recorded in many traditions (ahadith):

    Ahmed and Ibn al-Dhahhak narrated from Ali (AS): “I entered on the prophet (S) and his eyes were flooded, I said: Oh! Prophet of Allah, anyone made you angry? Why are your eyes flooded? He said: Gabriel just left me telling me that al-Hussain will be killed by the river Euphrates. He (the Prophet (S)) said: So he (Gabriel) said: Do you want me to let you smell his dirt (from his burial pot)? I said: Yes! He reached with his hand and grabbed and handful of dirt and gave it to me. So I could not help it and my eyes were flooded.”6

    Ummul Fadhl the daughter of al-Harith said that she entered on the Messenger of Allah (S) and she said: “Oh! Messenger of Allah, I saw a strange dream last night. He said: And what is it? She said: It was difficult. He said: And what is it? She said: I saw, as if, a piece of your body was severed and was put in my lap! The Messenger of Allah (S) said: You saw well – Fatima will give birth, God willing, a boy so he will be in your lap. Then Fatima gave birth to al-Hussain (AS) and he was in my lap – just as the Messenger of Allah (S) said. So I entered one day on the Messenger of Allah (S) and put him in his lap, but I noticed that the eyes of the Messenger of Allah (S) pouring tears! So I said: Oh! Prophet of Allah, my parents are your ransom, what is with you? He said: Gabriel (AS) came to me and informed me that my nation (ummah) will kill this son of mine.” 7

    Umm Salamah has said: “al-Hussain entered on the Prophet (S), while I was sitting at the door, so I saw in the hand of the Prophet (S) something he turned over while (Hussain) sleeping on his stomach. I said: Oh messenger of Allah, I looked and saw you turning something over in your hand when the kid was sleeping on your stomach and your tears were pouring? He said: Gabriel came to me with the sand upon which he (Hussain) will be killed. And he informed me that my nation (umma) will kill him.”8

    Ibn Saad, Ali bin Muhammad, Yahya bin Zakariya, a man heard it from ‘Amir al-Sha’bi say: “When Ali (as) passed by Karbalaa in his march to Siffien and lined up with Nainawa – a village on the Euphrates – he stopped and called one of them men: Tell aba ‘Abdullah (al-Hussain (AS)) what this land is called? He said: Karbala. Then he cried until the earth was wet from his tears. He then said: I entered on the messenger of Allah (S) and he was crying. So I said: What makes you cry?

    He said: Gabriel was with me, just now, and informed me: that my son al-Hussain (AS) will be killed at the banks of Furat in a location called Karbala. Then Gabriel grabbed a handful of dirt and let me smell it. So I could not help it, my eyes overflowed.”9

    From this tradition (hadith) we can see that Imam al-Ali (AS) also wept for Imam al-Hussain (AS). There are more traditions showing that the Holy Prophet (S) wept for Imam al-Hussain (AS).10

    Umm Salamah, the wife of the Holy Prophet (S) also wept for Imam al-Hussain (AS).11

    Even the Jinns mourned Imam al-Hussain (AS)’s death, it has been reported that after Imam al-Hussain (AS)’s martyrdom, Umm Salamah said: “I heard the Jinns mourning for al-Hussain (AS).”12

    In conclusion, we cry for Imam al-Hussain (AS) because so did the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (S). Every year we continue and revive the message of Karbala by mourning and crying over the injustice which the Ahlul Bayt (AS) suffered on the plains of Karbala, and through this we renew our pledge of allegiance to the Imam (AS) and keep his noble cause alive in our hearts.

    1. Nadra al-Azdiya, a woman who was contemporary of Imam al –Hussain (AS), is said to have reported: “When al-Hussain b. ‘Ali was killed, the sky rained down blood, so that next morning we found our wells and water jugs filled with it.” This hadith is narrated by Ibn Hajar.
    2. The Holy Qur’an, Aqa Mirza Mahdi Puya, p. 681, pub. Peermohammed Trust (Pakistan). This hadith is recorded under the tafsir of the verse (19:12-15). Aqa Mahdi Puya says that what is meant by “the heavens wept” (in the hadith of Imam as-Sadiq) is that the sun became extraordinarily red.
    3. al-Suyuti reports in his commentary on the verse (19:13) describing Allah’s compassion towards the ancient martyr John son of Zachariah that “The heavens did not weep for the death of anyone except John son of Zachariah and al-Hussain b. Ali. Its redness [at sunset] is the sign of its weeping”.
    4. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Edward Gibbon (1911), v. 5, pp. 391-2.
    5. The Holy Qur’an, (19:58); also refer to (17:109).
    6. Thakhaer al-Uqba, Muhibbuldeen al-Tabari, p. 148.
    7. al-Mustadrak al-Sahih, al-Hafidh al-Hakim al-Nisapouri, v. 3, p. 176, (al-Hakim said: “This is an authentic hadith (Sahih) on the conditions of Bukhari and Muslim but they did not print it”); Dalael al-Nubouwa, al-Hafidh al-Bayhaqi under the subject of al-Hussain (AS); Cf. Ibn al-A’tham IV, (Hyderabad, 1971), p. 211-2, the author narrates this hadith using a different chain of narration.
    8. al-Musannaf, al-Hafidh abu Bakr bin abi Shaibah, v. 12.
    9. al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Ibn Saad; al-Musannaf, Ibn Abi Shaibeh, v. 12 (with “Patience aba ‘Abdullah, patience aba ‘Abdullah”); al-Moejam al-Kabeer, al-Tabarani, v. 1; Tareekh al-Shamm, Ibn ‘Asakir.
    10. al-Musnad, Ahmad bin Hanbal, v. 2, p. 60-61; al-Taba’qat al-Kubra, Ibn Saad; al-Moejam al-Kabeer, al-Hafidh al-Tabarani (on subject of al-Hussain); A’lam al-Nubuwwah, al-Mawardi al-Shafi ‘I; Kanz al-Ummal, al-Muttaqi al-Hindi.
    11. al-Khasa’is, al-Suyuti al-Shafi’I, 2:125; al-Manaqib, al-Magazili, p. 313; al-Musnad, Ahmad bin Hanbal, 6:294; Tarikh al-Islam, al-Dimishqi, 3:11; al-Bidayah wal-Nihayah, 6:230; al-‘Aqd al-Farid, ibn ‘Abd Rabbah, 2:219; Kanz al-Ummal, al-Muttaqi al-Hindi; Cf. Ibn al-A’tham IV, 212-4; Sahih al- Tirmidhi; Mishkat al-Masabih, an-Nawawi, English Version, Tradition # 6157.
    12. Tarikh al-Kabir, al-Bukhari (author of the famous Sahih), v. 4, Part 1, p. 26; Fadha’il al-Sahaba, Amhmad Ibn Hanbal, v. 2, p. 776, tradition # 1373; Tabarani, v. 3, p.130-1; Tahdhib, v. 7, p.404.

    • My friend, Ahmad Ali, what you practically say here is that Hussain ibn Ali’s fate was predestinated in skies, or otherwise said, his fate was the Allah’s will. If so, what sense makes to curse Yazid and his henchmen if they only accomplished Allah will. “…army of Yazid, may Allah’s curse be upon him, ” you say. This statement proves beyond any doubts that you are actively involved in the consequences of this tragedy that happened 1400 years ago. And that is not good at all because such a view is one of the root causes of what it is happening in Syria, Iraq and Wemen right now. You say only, “… to keep Imam al-Hussain’s (AS) cause alive in our hearts,” but you don’t say something like this:…. to keep Imam al-Hussain’s (AS) cause alive in our hearts but to forgive his criminals because they didn’t know what they were doing. Had you and those like you put the Asura’s commemoration in such a perspective, most probably the endless war between Shia and Sunni would have finally ceassed. But, unfortunately it is not the case, much because Ashura commemoration has this active component- hatred toward those responsible for this tragedy. For centuries us, the Christians, viwed the things in the same perspective- Jews murderd Jesus let’s hate them. But it is no more the the case now. Now, we commemorate the crucification of Jesus without cursing Pilat, Caiafa and others responsible for this crucification. Jews, if still present in this commemoration (Easter) are viewed only from a historical perspective. And from a religious perspective we are focused now not on the death of Jesus but on his ressurection. If Allah let it happened ( Hussain’s martyrdom), then means He did that for a broader purpose. Jesus died for as a new convenant between God and humankind to replace the old convenant between God and Jews. And Hussain died for what? For as you Shi’its and Sunnis to fight ones others like the day of tomorrow would never come!!!! I don’t think so. More than this, much from what you claim here, quoting some ahadith, is very similar to 1001 Nights fairy tales. If the angel Gabriel made known the fate of Hussain, how on earth is that Hussain was the only one to not now what was ahead of him? Why didn’t Prophet Muhammad inform Hussain of his predestined fate? Why? Why, if Prophet Muhammad knew beforehand of Hussain martyrdom, still he did nothing to prevent the consequences of this death- centuries of bloody wars? Why did Gabriel inform the Prophet only about this death but not about what was to come out from this death? How I said already, from a secularist perspective all what you said here sounds like 1001 Nights or a Hollywoodized story.

      • Marzena Goralska

        Nelu, it might sound like a Hollywoodized story for you however there is more to Shia -Sunni conflict which sadly still seems to remain. The death of Imam Hussain (as) is a lesson for humanity not even Muslims. Lesson to stand up against tyranny, terrorism and justice. The rulers of that time hiding behind religion of Islam and causing a terror at the same time out of greed for power and money. You wouldn’t pat them on the back saying carry on, may God be please with you like some Sunni brothers and sisters do referring to these criminals. Shias clearly demonstrate that the right thing to do is to stand against ppl as such. You can call it whichever way you want. The Prophet (saws) knew what is going to happen and Imam Hussain knew himself but you have to understand these ppl were beyond normal with their manners, knowledge and faith, selfless, knowing what is going to happen to save falling Muslim community back into darkness. The battle at Karbala is a lesson to everyone that if you witness injustice and decide to stay quiet or God forbid encourage it you are becoming the oppressor yourself. It’s not about conflict between Shias and Sunnis however many Muslims still don’t recognise this event and do know little about what really happened in our history or in the worse case decide to stay silent and ignore.

  3. Crying in the Quran

    If crying were wrong or an innovation, then Allah would have declared it as a flawed action. But instead, we find that crying is a commendable act. Let alone mankind crying, the Quran details the crying of the skies and the earth. How the skies and earth cry, only Allah knows. If the skies and earth do not cry, then why would Allah state in the Quran;

    And the skies and the earth did not weep for them (Firawn and his people) nor were they given a respite. (Surah 44, ad-Dukhan verse 29).

    Allah forbid this is not a poetic metaphor, this is Allah’s truthful word. This verse is testifying that on the death and destruction of the enemies of Allah, neither the skies nor the earth cries, because the enemies of Allah are from those rejected by Him and at a loss, not those preferred by Him. Therefore, it is clear that when Allah’s chosen saintly people leave this earth, then the skies and the earth cry for them.

    Then what of those who were martyred in Allah’s path, thirsty and hungry for three days? Undoubtedly the skies and the earth both cry for them. If it were an innovation in faith to cry, then neither the sky nor the earth would cry. This proves that crying for the deceased is not an innovation, but on the contrary it is the manifest will of the Cherisher.

    This also proves that crying is a manifestly natural human instinct. That is, mankind cries, the skies and earth cry, thus the ones calling this act an innovation are themselves innovators against the Quran. In the sight of the Lord of the Worlds, rather than being insignificant, the act of crying is one of the best of the commendable acts: the Quran itself testifies to this in the following words;

    And they say, “Exalted is our Lord! Indeed, the promise of our Lord has been fulfilled.” And they fall upon their faces weeping, and the Quran increases them in humble submission. (Surah 17, Bani Israil verses 108-109)

    This proves that crying in the court of Allah increases humility and thus increases the approval and status of a believer’s deeds. If Allah did not approve of crying and considered it an innovation, he would indeed have reprimanded us for it. But instead, here we see that it is being approved of, which can only mean that it is highly liked by Allah.

  4. Marzena Goralska

    It is always good to look at somebody else’s point of view of the day Ashura but from my own point of view as a revert and follower of Ahlu Bayt (as) it seems to be a way you simply try to avoid of what reallly happened that day bringing all possible excuses up. Disturbing thing is when you bring up the name of the tyrant and terrorist of that times Muawiyah b Abu Sufyan who openly showed hostility towards family of Rasulullah (saws) and played with values of real Islam and hopes Allah is pleased with him (?!) and at the same time cleverly explaining that yes of course Hussain sacrificed a lot to revive Islam and Ummah which clearly lost the meaning of its own religion but let’s not make a big deal out of it. Also trying hard to prove its bidaah and shirk mourning after Imam Husssin and his family (as) and yet performing Tarawih prayer which Umar himself invented and called it fantastic innovation. Get your facts right please and open your mind and heart. The culture of silence, ignorance and lack of questioning some facts in Islam will not take anyone far. Rather backwards.

    • if i was in the beloveds time...and as of now...i would mix and love those he p.b.u.h loved and mixef with

      Brother marzena,

      Alhamdullah your muslim like us all in sha Allah….i would like to add that i personaly love the shias….the respectable/ful ones too. May i just ask…and im not insulting…but do we have opus dei in our beautiful islam? And does islam in anyway allow harming let alone of others? And did our messenger our beloved ever harm?

      • It is sister Marzena,
        first and foremost we know how diverse the whole Muslim community is including the Shia community thus we cannot talk about us in general. There are ppl coming from different paths of life, coming from different religions or beliefs, being of different origin, skin of color, having their own mind about certain issues. Talking about Shias, not everyone is in favor of self harm thus we cannot judge all. I am personally against this practice however whoever decides to do it out of love, sadness and respect for Imam Hussain (as) there is a valid intention and reason behind it. However to belittle the whole event of Karbala and make the day of Ashura actually the day of festivities and happiness comes from ignorance or lack of knowledge. There are certain facts about tyrannical rulers including Muawiyah, Yazid that are totally overlooked by sunni brothers and sisters. They are not either Hazrat or deserve recognition as a just rulers of Islam. There seems to be this culture of silence going on here. No we have to talk about who they really were and bring the truth to the daylight. It is standing up for what is right and just.
        Abu Huraira narrated: The Prophet (S) looked toward ‘Ali, al-Hasan, al-Husayn, and Fatimah, and said: “I am in the state of war with those who will fight you, and in the state of peace with those who are peaceful to you.” Yet so many Muslims referring to tyrants who openly fought Ahlul Bayt are adding (RA). How Allah can be happy with oppressors and terrorists of the family of its Prophet. Is ISIS representing real Islam as they clearly state and kill innocent ppl? Shall we also ask Allah to be happy with them cause they recited Shahada, decided to title themselves as rulers and khalifs of Islam yet their actions are totally against beautiful teachings of Islam? When we are silent when injustice happens we become oppressors ourselves thus standing up and remembering what happened at Karbala is a right thing to do.

  5. Ok. Celebration is Bidah. But if someone has intention of gratitude to Allah(swt) while fasting then is it correct. Because from the text of hadith in Muslim, it seems thT Musa(as) had this same intention..

  6. Why waste so much time in researching and manipulating stories and references! Made me laugh the effort the author has gone to just make people believe what he has been told.

    May Allah give you hidayath my friend and follow the true path of Islam.. 🙂

  7. Jazaakallahu khairan Shaikh.

  8. not sure how you missed this:

    The Messenger of Allah (peace and salutations be upon him) said:
    من وسَّع علي عياله يوم عاشوراء وسع الله عليه سائر السنة
    Translation: Whoever generously spends on his dependents on the day of ‘Aashura, Allah Ta’ala will expand his sustenance (Barakah) for the rest of that year.
    This Hadith is classified as acceptable and reliable[1]. It is narrated by:
    Jabir Ibn Abdullah (May Allah be pleased with him)
    Umar Ibn Khattab (May Allah be pleased with him)
    Abu Hurayrah (May Allah be pleased with him)
    Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him)
    Abdullah Ibn Mas`ud (May Allah be pleased with him)
    Abdullah Ibn Umar (May Allah be pleased with him)

  9. How was Hasan ibn ALi (raḍī Allāhu anhumā) martyred?

  10. Abubakar Hassan

    Prove to us that it is the real Islam. Hurting oneself and wailing over death of someone has not been reported in any authentic books of Islam. So tell us from Qur’an and Hadeeth!

  11. What we Shia Muslims do at Ashura is the real Islam. I ask you Sunni Muslims to do it too. Self-flagellation is allowed in Islam.

    http://matamislam.blogspot.com/

  12. There is no doubt that extremist Shia have overshadowed the month of Muharram with public acts of self harm which are a source of embarrassment for Muslims. The Prophet Muhammad described Muharam as ”Allah’s month’ and with the fasting of ‘ashura he commemorated the saving of Musa and his people. This is not the month of mourning, far from it. It is the month of Allah’s Mercy and forgiveness. I look forward to the time when Shia Muslims unequivocally distance themselves from those shameful acts which have infiltrated the Muslim mindset.

  13. Jazak Allahu khairan for the good and beneficial article
    May Allah bless you for clearing so many points out

    May Allah unite us upon truth
    The good ending always belongs to the believers

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