Congratulations on the threshold of the Advent of Imam Mahdi (AS), the expected one, to all Muslim Freedom Fighters throughout the world, to all Shia, his real lovers and to the esteemed readers of the Tehran Times on the birth anniversary of Imam Hussein (PBUH), known as Seyyed al-Shuhada, the third infallible Imam, master of the martyrs, of the household of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).

Sha’ban 3, 1424 (Tuesday, September 30, 2003), a very auspicious day in the month of holy Prophet (PBUH), is the birth anniversary of the youngest grandson of the holy Prophet (PBUH). His father was Imam Ali (PBUH) and his mother lady Fatima (PBUH), the dearest daughter of the holy Prophet (S). He was born on Sha’ban 3, in 626 C.E. in Medina.


Holy Prophet (PBUH) and His Great Love to Hussein (PBUH)


The holy Prophet (PBUH) loved his two grandsons (Hassan and Hussein) tremendously. His holiness used to say: “Allah has ordered me to love and cherish these two for God supports those who befriend them.”


The Prophet’s (PBUH) companions and followers often heard him say, “Hassan and Hussein are masters, leading the people both in this world and in the Hereafter.”


The holy Prophet (PBUH) described Imam Hussein (PBUH) and Imam Hassan (PBUH) in the following words: Hassanain means Hassan and Hussein. Sebtain means two sons of the Prophet (PBUH), Sheblain means two lions, Sayyedain means two masters or two chiefs. Raihanatain: Two fragrant flowers. Imamatain: Two leaders or Imams.


His love for Hussein and Hassan (PBUT) was so great that he used to say:

“My Grandsons Hassan (PBUH) and Hussein (PBUH) are the masters of the youth in paradise.”


The holy Prophet (PBUH) would embrace them in his warm and affectionate arms. He would make both of them sit together on his lap. When the verse of purity (Ayat Tathir) was revealed, the holy Prophet (PBUH) covered them along with their father Ali (PBUH) and their mother lady Fatima (PBUH) with a Yemeni mantle, saying, “O, Allah these are my household members.”


During the event of Mubahala, too, after the Christian priests had come to discover the truth about the Prophet (PBUH) and it was decided that both sides would come with their most beloved ones and invoke a curse upon themselves if they were liars, the Prophet (PBUH) came with his two grandsons along with their father and mother, as Almighty God ordered, “Say: come, we will summon our sons and your sons, and our women and your women, and ourselves and yourselves….” chapter 3, verse no 61, holy Qur’an.


In several times and places the holy Prophet (PBUH) used to say: “Most surely Hussein (PBUH) is the lifeboat (savior) and the light for guidance.”



Ashura, the Day of …….


One of the most important of the many memorable events in the life of Sayyed al-Shuhada was his martyrdom on the 10th of Muharram 61 A.H. Shia people consider Ashura, a day of mourning on which assemblies and processions are held to mourn the martyrs of Karbala and to commemorate their heroic struggle and sacred sacrifice to save Islam.


It is better to have a glance at those days as history registered these hidden facts: the years during the reign of Muawiyah were years of angry protest for him because Muawiyah had breached the terms of his treaty with Imam Hassan (PBUH) and the perverse whims and crooked will of Muawiyah had changed the laws of Islam. Will of God and His Message were not respected.


The regime of Muawiyah seized every opportunity to weaken the position of the Prophet’s family, and to undermine their status and destroy their supporters.


Sayyed al-Shuhada forbore this difficult period with patience, exposing Muawiyah’s hypocrisy before he died. Muawiyah’s treacherous son, Yazid succeeded him by his will.


The governor of Medina informed Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH), of Yazid’s order to either obtain Sayyed al-Shuhada’s allegiance or to kill him if he refused to approve Yazid as caliph. Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) was certain that to bow down to Yazid’s caliphate would be catastrophic to Islam. Therefore, Sayyed al-Shuhada migrated to Mecca where the Divine Sanctuary, the Ka’aba is situated.


The news of the whole affair of Yazid’s order and Sayyed al-Shuhada’s movement from Medina spread throughout the various cities of the Muslim world. The people of Iraq, especially those in Kufa, greatly dissatisfied with the government of Muawiyah and Yazid, sent letters inviting Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) to Iraq.


Imam Hussein (PBUH) knew that Yazid, like his father was insistent on destroying Islam and would not stop short of any form of atrocities to consolidate his own power and authority. Both Muawiyah and Yazid ruled as caliphs in the name of Islam and called themselves successors of the holy Prophet (PBUH). The danger for Islam was real and imminent. Now the regime has asked him to ratify its claim to legitimacy and to justify its actions by obtaining Imam Hussein’s (PBUH) allegiance.


Yazid, having heard of the movement of Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) to Mecca had appointed a few men to capture or assassinate him during the sacred Hajj pilgrimage. Imam Hussein (PBUH) decided to leave Mecca, not only with plans to fight the oppressive regime of Yazid to safeguard the foundations of Islam but also to avoid the sacrilege of the House of God if he were to be murdered there.


Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) then started on his journey toward Kufa which was the center of his supporters who had promised to assist him in his struggle.


This offered hopes of launching an effective struggle against the forces of oppression. The forces sent by Yazid surrounded him in Karbala, near Kufa, stopping him from proceeding toward the city of his supporters.


Yazid issued orders to capture Imam Hussein (PBUH), in case he submits to the demand of allegiance to Yazid caliphate, to bring him to Damascus so that the caliph may decide about him, or in case he refuses, to fight and kill him and his supporters. Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) refused to capitulate to this disgrace and did not come to terms with Yazid.


Imam Hussein (PBUH) preferred to accept the challenge of an unequal battle and to fight with a small group of seventy and odd followers and relatives against Yazid’s army of several thousands.


They all fought with marvelous courage and preferred martyrdom to serve their purpose, that is, the revival of Islam. Their holy bodies were buried at Karbala, the scene of their heroic battle. Imam Hussein (PBUH), the master of the martyrs lived for 57 years before he was martyred on the 10th of Muharram 61 A.H.


No doubt that they keep alive the spirit of sacrifice and self-abandonment in the hearts of the Muslims by glorifying martyrdom. To defend religion, to fight against injustice and oppression was the aim of Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) and Shia people never forget this sacred ideal.


In fact, Imam Hussein (PBUH) adamantly refused to yield to might and wrong and disgrace of Islam, his Holiness (PBUH) taught the lesson of self-sacrifice to Muslims to save true religious teachings from falling into oblivion.


Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) was martyred but not defeated. He reached the heights of human nobility and set a practical lesson of struggle against injustice and oppression to defend Islam. His martyrdom exposed the evil nature of the regime of Muawiyah and Yazid who ruled over Muslims in the name of Islam and as successors of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).


Choosing martyrdom, Sayyed al-Shuhada (PBUH) deprived the atrocious regime of its false legitimacy. Indeed, he shook the foundations of the Umayyad dynasty and thwarted their perverse designs.


However, holding mourning assemblies and mourning the martyrdom of Imam Hussein (PBUH) is not enough to do justice to the sacred Islamic aims and ideals, but those values must be understood and persuaded by all not only in words but deeds as well.


Along with those who expect the Advent of his grandson Imam Mahdi (PBUH), let us pray, “Who will take revenge for the blood of the martyrs of Karbala?”


Maxims of Imam Hussein (AS)


1) Addressing the army of Yazid, “By Allah, neither will I give in to the humiliation of honoring tyrants like you nor would I flee like slaves….”

2) Life under the oppression of tyrants is death and death for the sake of justice is everlasting life.

3) Surely some people worship Allah for the joys of paradise -- this is the worship of traders. Some worship him for their fear of hell, this is the worship of slaves. Yet, some worship him selflessly because He is worthy of worship -- and this is the worship of “free men.”

4) He who tries to achieve something through acting disobediently to Allah will miss what he expects and fall in what he fears.


5) Beware of things for which you apologize. The true believer should not make mistakes and should not apologize. The hypocrite makes mistakes and apologizes everyday.


At the end, let us stand toward his holy shrine and salute him as the Infallible Imam has instructed us:


Peace be on you, oh successor of Adam, the choice of Allah!

Peace be on you, oh successor of Noah, the Prophet of Allah!

Peace be on you, oh successor of Abraham, the Friend of Allah!

Peace be on you, oh successor of Moses, who conversed with Allah!

Peace be on you, oh successor of Jesus, the Spirit of Allah!

Peace be on you, oh successor of Mohammad, the Beloved of Allah1

Peace be on you, oh successor of Ali, Commander of the Faithful,

Peace be on him, peace be on you, oh son of Mohammad Mustafa!

Peace be on you, oh son of Ali Mortaza, peace be on you, oh son of Fatima, Peace be on you, oh son of Khadijat-ul-Kobra, Peace be on you, oh Martyr, for whose blood Allah claims compensation, and the son of the martyr, for whose blood Allah claims compensation! Oh the assassinated whose assassination and the assassination of his relatives and friends could not be avenged! I testify that you kept up the prayer, and paid the poor rate and ordered good actions and forbade sinful actions, and obeyed Allah and his Messenger till the last breath. So, may Allah curse the people who assassinated you, and may Allah curse the people  who oppressed you, and may Allah curse the people who heard of it and were pleased with it, oh my Master! Oh Aba Abdullah! I bear witness that you were light before and during conception. The impurities of the Pre-Islamic age could not touch you, nor its uncleanliness affect you. I bear witness that verily, you are the pillar of our faith and the leader of the faithful. I bear witness that you are Imam, virtuous, that you guarded yourself against sin, that you were pleased to resign to the will of Allah, that you are pure, that you guided aright and that you are divinely guided. And I bear witness that verily the Imams that are your progeny are the essence of abstinence, the signs of guidance, the strong rope of religion and the proofs of Allah for the people of the world. And I make Allah, His angles, His Prophets and His messengers, the witness that I believe in him and in his return and in the laws of Allah and in the consequences of human actions. I sincerely submit to him and follow his commands. May Allah bless them and their souls and their bodies, and what is visible and what is unseen, and what is apparent and what is hidden.


Wishing all readers a blessed 3rd Sha’ban 1424, Pardis.N.T. Tehran, Iran.



News Code 1990

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