Thaqalain - Part
From: "Mohammed Yusuf Jaffer"
Subject: Thaqalain part 20
Date: Tue, 05 May 1998 09:57:22 PDT
Assalamun Alaikum netters
Today we continue with the Thaqalain
(A.S) WITH YAZEED (II)
On the 2nd Muharram 61/2 October 680, Imam
Hussain and his companions reached the plain of Karbala. Imam Hussain bought
land there and there pitched their tents.
The following day, Umar bin Sa'ad came to
Kerbala with 4000 soldiers. Umar Sa'ad was the commander of the Yazid Army.
He had several meetings with Imam Hussain and was so impressed by Imam that
he began to join Imam for prayers. When Ibne Ziyad heard this, he was
furious. He sent Shimr with 10,000 men and wrote a letter to Umar bin Sa'ad,
ordering him to get "Bai'at" from Imam Hussain or kill him. Umar bin Sa'ad
immediately changed his attitude towards Imam Hussain. Following his
instructions he imposed restrictions on Imam Hussain and his followers from
getting water from the Euphrates, and from the 7th Muharram, no one from
Imam Hussain's camp was allowed near the river. Umar Sad accordingly
stationed a force of 500 cavalry on the road to the river.
On the night of 'Ashura' Abbas went to Ibn
Ziyad to request a respite of one night which was granted. At this point,
Hussain assembled his relatives and supporters and delivered a speech. This
speech is unanimously reported in the events of the
night of 'Ashura' by the sources through different authorities, examples
Tabari vol II page 319; Bidaya vol III page 176 and Maqatil page 112, he
" I give praise to God who has honoured us
with the Prophethood, has taught us the Quran , and favoured us with His
religion…. I know of no worthier companions than mine; may God reward you
with all the best of His reward. I think tomorrow our end will come… I ask
you all to leave me alone and to go away to safety. I free you
from your responsibilities for me, and I do not hold you back. Night will
provide you a cover; use it as steed… You may take my children with you to
save their lives.
At the end of his speech, Hussain asked his
brother Abbas to put out the lamp in the tent so that poeple may walk away
in the darkness without being ashamed of being seen by him. It is reported
that as soon as the lamp was put off, all those who had accompanied the Holy
Imam from Mecca in their vain hopes of making their fortunes, began to
desert him in batches. With only a few exceptions, his supporters, from
among both friend and relatives, refused to leave or survive after him.
From among the followers of Hussain, the aged
Muslim bin Awsaja stood up and exclaimed :
"How can we leave you? What excuse then will
we have before God in discharging our deputy towards you? No, by God, we
will not depart from you. I will fight with you until my last breath and
until I die with you.
Then Sa'ad bin Abdullah al-Hanafi address
Hussain, saying :
"By God, we will not depart from you until by
sacrifing our lives we have proven to God that we have faithfully fulfilled
the duty we owe to the Prophet concerning you. By God, if I knew that I
would be killed and then again be given a new life, and that then
my body would be burned alive, all this being repeated seventy times, I
would still not leave you until I died in front of you. And why should I not
do that when I know that I can be killed once, leading to an everlasting
honour and privilege. [The last sentence in Bidaya reads:] By God, if I knew
that I would be killed before you a thousand times, and by this your life
and the lives of the other Ahlel Bait would be saved, I would love to be
killed a thousand times; but this is only to be killed once, leading to an
After quoting a similar speech by Zuhayr bin
Al-Qayn, our sources say that all the comapanions of Hussain pronounced more
or less in the same vein and declared their complete loyalites to Hussain,
"By God, we will never leave you alone untl
all of us are killed and our bodies are torn to pieces. By this we will have
fulfilled our duties to you."
At the break of the dawn of the fateful day,
10th of Muharram 61 A.H, Hussain called his son Ali Akbar who resembled the
Holy Prophet (s.a.w), to call for prayer (Azan).
It was the third day of the thirst inflicted
on the whole camp of the Holy Imam. Hussain and his devotees performed 'Tayammum'
instead of 'Wuzu' and the Holy Imam offered the last congregational prayers
with his devotees on earth.
Hussain had not even finished his prayers when
a rain of arrows from the Yazidian forces began to shower on them. It is
reported that Omar Ibne Sa'ad Ibne Waqas was the first to take the bow in
the Yazidian camp and shoot an arrow toward Hussain saying (addressing the
men of his forces):
"Witness ye all that I am the first to shoot
an arrow against Hussain."
Before Hussain could conclude their prayers,
thirty (30) of the godly ones, who were engaged in the prayer, were shot
When Amr Sa'ad called upon the army to attack
and kill him, Imam Hussain said: "Death is better than disgrace and disgrace
is better than the fire of hell."
SPEECHES TO THE ENEMIES FORCES
Hussain, preparing himself for the fateful
encounter, dressed himself in the cloak of the Prophet (s.a.w), perfumedd
himself with musk, and rode on horseback with the Quran raised in his hand.
Addressing his enemies, he said : "O' people! Do you recognise me? By God
The reply came from the enemy was : "by god,
yes, We do recognise thee, Thou art the Son of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w)."
Hussain again said : "Do you know me! Am I not
the son of the Apostle of God?"
The reply was : "Yes, we do know thee, Thou
art the son of the Apostle of God."
Hussain said : "Do you know that my father is
Ali-al-Murtaza son of Abu Talib, and my mother is Fatema Zahra, the daughter
of the Apostle of God and my grandfather is Lady Khadija daughter of
Khowailad, who was the first to embrace Islam?"
The reply was : "Yes it is."
Hussain said : "By God, tell me, is not Hamza
the Chief of the Martyrs of Islam, one of my ucles?"
The reply was : "Yes."
Hussain said : "O' people! Do you recognise
this turban on my head, is it not the turban of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w) and
this sword in my hand, that of the Apostle of God?"
The reply was : "Yes we do recognise."
Hussain said : "Do you know that my father Ali
ibne Abi Talib was the first among men to join the Holy Prophet (s.a.w) in
the faith Islam, and he was the most learned, and the most forbearing of all
men and he was the 'Maula' (Master, Lord) of all men and women?"
The reply was : Yes! We know that everything
thou sayes is truth."
Then Hussain asked aloud : "Say you then, why
do you make lawful the shedding of my blood?"
The reply from the brutal forces was : "Yes!
We shall kill thee in thy thirst."
The enemy replied to Hussain's discourse with
the most insulting and heinous remarks; among them, Shimr, seeing the fire
burning by Hussain's tents, said : "Hussain, you are hastening for the fire
in this world even before the Fire of the Day of Judgement." Hussain's
companion, Muslim bin Awsaja could not control himself at this heinous
insult and asked his permission to reply with arrow, but Hussain stopped
him, saying : "We will never start the fighting from our side.
As the situation grew hotter and an attack
from the Umayyad army imminent, Hussain once again came forward; after
praising God and praying for His blessing on Muhammad (s.a.w), he addressed
"O' people! You are accusing me, but think who
I am! Then search your hearts for what you are doing to me. Consider well if
it be lawful for you to kill me and violate my sacrosancity. Am I not the
son of the daughter of your Prophet (s.a.w), the son of the Prophet's (s.a.w)
wasi and cousing….? Did not the Prophet (s.a.w) say of me and my brother
that 'they are the lords of the youth of Paradise?' You cannot deny the
turth of what I have said concerning the merits of the family of Muhammad (s.a.w).
Are all these not sufficient to prevent you from shedding my blood?"
And again : "If you search in the whole East
and West you will not find a grandson of the Prophet other than me."
Hussain's numerous speeches and repeated
appeals in the name of the Prophet (s.a.w) to his enemies' religious
sentiments, which he made throughout the day and after each loss of life
among his supportes, were all in vain. The only reply he received was
that he must submit himself to Yazid or be killed. To this demand Hussain'
reply was : "By Allah, I shall not give my oath to you like a humiliated
one, and nor shall I flee like the captive."
At noon, Hussain and his followers performed
the prayer of the Zuhr according to the rite of the Salat al Khawf (the
prayer prescribed for when one faces a disastrous situation and calamity).
It was in the afternoon that the battle became fiercer, and Hussain's
supportes one after the other fell fighting in fornt of him. Until the last
of them had perished not a single member of Hussain's family came to harm,
but the finnally it was the turn of his relatives. The first to be killed
was Ali Akbar, the son of Hussain and the last one was his half brother
Abbas bin Ali, the standard bearer of the vanquished army.
When the helpless Imam stood all alone in the
field surrounded by the enemies, he was summoned by a call from his sister
Zainab in his camp. When he went into the tent, he found his baby son Ali
Asghar, dying of thirst in his cradle and the poor mother Rubab, whose milk
had dried up by the continous thirst and hunger for the three consecutive
days, could not help the baby with even a drop of her milk. Hussain took the
babe to the field and said :
"O' people! If, in your opion, Hussain is
guilt of any sin or crime, this innoccent babe has done nothing to hurt any
one of you. It does not even speak, and has not even uttered anything
against you or your Amir at Damascus. He is dying of thirst. He had neither
milk nor water for the last three days. Would you qeunch his thirst by a few
drops of water. If you suspect that I demand water for myself in the name of
the babe, then I will leave, if you want, and go away and you may return it
with his thirst quenched."
Ibne Sad fearing a revolt of his forces in
sympathy for the Hussain, at once ordered a stone hearted brute named
Hurmula to answer Hussain. The tyrant, shot a three-pronged arrow from his
bow which after piercing through Hussain's arm got stuck into into the tiny
neck of the innocent
babe. Blood flowed from the neck and the babe
looking at his father's face smiled and stopped breathing for ever. Hussain
lifted his hands with the dead child toward heaven and prayed to God for
justice and rewards for his suffering.
To be continued..