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Benifiting from Ashura

Benifiting from Ashura



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Published by J Khan

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Published by: J Khan on May 14, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Teachings of Islam
Benefiting from Ashura According to the View of Imam Shirazi[1] 
Karim al-Mahrus[2] 
 ‘The month of Muharram is one of the months during which thepeople of pre-Islamic or pagan times prohibited fighting. Later, inthe same sacred month, our blood was spilt and our inviolabilitywas violated and our progeny and women were made captive andour tents were put to the torch and our belongings wereplundered and no inviolable thing that the Messenger of Allah hadin us remained but it was violated. The Day of Hussein hasblooded our eyes and let flow our tears and humiliated ourbeloved. The land of Karbala[3] , the land of tragedy andaffliction has made us heirs to tragedy and affliction until the lastday. So let the weepers weep over the like of Hussein, for weepingover him is a mitigation for grave sins.’ 
These are the words of Imam ‘Ali ibn Musa al-Rida[4] (a)[5] inwhich he depicts for us the extent of the recidivism of theUmmayad regime and the indelible mark that the slaughter of Imam Hussein (a) left on the people of the Prophet’s household orhis Ahl-ul-Bayt (a). Such an immense tragedy it was and such astain on the face of Islam.
However, one of the secrets of the magnitude of the day of  Ashura[6] lies in Imam Hussein’s (a) knowledge of the fate thatawaited him and the pure people, his household. He had certainknowledge that he would be martyred and he had alluded to thison many occasions in his sermons and speeches during his exitfrom Mecca and Medina, stating clearly that he was reconcilinghimself to meeting Allah and that he was determined to expendhis lifeblood in the way of Allah and in the aid of the truth and inreviving the Islamic religion. Through this knowledge andcertainty, we can see the secret of the divine protection andconcern afforded to this uprising and we can see the greatness of this spirit and the correctness of his reading of the state of theIslamic nation and government.
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Teachings of Islam
The Imam (a) put his hand on the pulse of both the nation andthe government and when he found that the government wasdeviating from the way of the true religion, he took hold of thenation to straighten this deviation. He (a) said: ‘I have not come forth out of pride or arrogance, nor to causecorruption, nor as an oppressor, but I have come forth to seek thereform of the nation of my grandfather Muhammad. I wish toorder the good and forbid the evil and follow the way of mygrandfather and my father ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib.’ 
He (a) also said: ‘Now, I summon you to revive the features of the truth and to slayinnovation. If you answer my call then you will be guided to theways of righteousness.’ 
He (a) also said: ‘And I summon you to the book of Allah and to the way of Hisprophet. If you hear what I say and follow me I will lead you tothe path of righteousness.’ 
In the thought of the supreme religious authority (
) Grand Ayatullah Sayyid Muhammad Husseini al-Shirazi (May Allahpreserve him.), we can clearly sense today the effects of themartyrdom of Imam Hussein (a) and the extent of its influence onthe survival of the Islamic religion and in protecting it from theguiles of the enemy, all because of the historical stance that hetook and the sacrifice he made on the day of al-Taff.[7] We canalso discern with ease from amongst these effects that the powerof government, however great and developed that might be, cannever compare with the power of the Islamic nation. The power of government is partial and is derived from the power of the Islamicnation above which there can be no power as long as the nationremains firmly upon the religion and follows it. The Imam (a),alongside his knowledge by divine will of what would happen tohim and to his family on the day of Ashura, also knew of theoutcome of events and of the future. His uprising did not onlyuncover the scandals and crimes of the Umayyad regime but there
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Teachings of Islam
was a mission behind this uprising; namely to make clear thereality of the Islamic religion and to clarify its features foreveryone. The result of the battle of Karbala was the uprooting of the Umayyad government despite its tyranny, influence, power,wealth and military might at a time when the society was not evenallowing itself to consider the question of overthrowing theUmayyads because of their might and despotism. The events atKarbala renewed life for Islam and corrected the religious beliefsthat had arisen due to the Umayyad’s fabrication of prophetictraditions or
and their adoption of ideas from falsephilosophies. Ideas such as predeterminism (
- the idea thatmen are compelled by Allah in their actions; delegation (
,and theomorphism (
) - the idea that Allah has a bodily form,and others like them, which served to shore up the pillars of theirillegal regime. Hence Islam appeared once again, shining in thetrue form in which Allah had revealed it to His noble messenger(s), in the form of the madhhab or school of the Ahl-ul-Bayt (a)after being cleansed of the detritus of Ummayad falsehood.
This uprising was and remains a model for all other liberationistuprisings in the world against oppressors. This uprising was the ‘big bang’, which prepared the way for a succession of revolutionsand motivated those involved in the struggle to defend the sacredvalues of Islam and taught them the art of combating tyranny andto be steadfast in the struggle until they achieved a life of nobilityand freedom. The nation then is a great power, and governmenthas no power if the legality of its existence has not acquired theapproval of the sacred law (
) and the nation. The nationmust grasp however, that for the legal government to be righteousthe nation must also be righteous. On this note, the renownedscholar Sheikh al-Baha’i[8] says:
 ‘There is no fault in the religion of Islam itself, rather the fault liesin the Muslims themselves.’ 
Imam Hussein (a), through his uprising, pointed out the way forthe future generations and made clear the path to solving theproblems of society and attaining the happiness of this life and thenobility of the next. When Islamic society indeed put into practicesome of these Islamic teachings it lived a life of prosperity andnobility as history witnessed in the days of Sayyid al-Murtada andSheikh al-Mufid and Allamah al-Hilli and Sheikh al-Karaki andSheikh al-Baha’i and Allamah al-Majlisi (May Allah venerate their
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