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Muharram (Arabic: )محرمIt is the first month of the Islamic calendar. Instead of joyous celebration, Muslims mark the beginning of the New Year by taking up the black attire of sorrow and participate in mourning gatherings in which the sacrifices of Imam Husayn (P) and his companions are commemorated. It is one of the four months of the year in which fighting is prohibited. Since the Islamic calendar is lunar, Muharram moves from year to year when compared with the Gregorian calendar.
Muharram is so called because it was unlawful to fight during this month; the word is derived from the word ‘haram’ meaning forbidden. It is held to be the most sacred of all the months, excluding Ramadan.It is the same month when Husein, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, was brutally massacred in Karbala alongside his family and friends in the year 680 CE/61 AH. This was the biggest terrorist attack against ISLAM, HUMANITY & JUSTICE
Their martyrdom of all is a sad day for all Muslims, especially the Shi’a, who hold mourning ceremonies to recall the righteous virtues for which the valiant martyrs stood and the grave calamities that they thus had to bear. The commemoration of this brutal massacre (Battle of Karbala) begins on the first day of Muharram and reaches its climax on the 10th of Muharram, the day of the battle, known as Ashurah and continues for 40 days or 69 days.
Ashura ( عاشوراءtransliteration: ‘Āshūrā’, Ashura, Ashoura, and other spellings). It is also called Yaumu-l ‘Ashurah (Day of Ashura), or simply Ashura meaning, ‘The Tenth Day’ Normally a public holiday is declared for this day. It is the 10th day of Muharram in Islamic calendar and marks the climax of the Remembrance of Muharram as it is on this day, the Battle of Kerbala was fought and I.Husein (P), the grandson of the H.Prophet Muhammad (P), was brutally massacred in Karbala alongside his family and friends
It is well-known because of historical significance and mourning for the martyrdom of Husayn ibn Ali, the grandson of the Islamic prophet Muhammad at the Battle of Karbala in the year 61 AH (AD 680). It is a day of speeches, public processions, and great grief. Men and women chant and weep, mourning Husayn, his family, and his followers. Speeches emphasize the importance of the values for which Husayn sacrificed himself, his family, and his followers. For centuries Shi’a pilgrims flocked here during Muharram, a practice which was severely limited under the regime of Saddam Hussein
Karbala (Arabic: ;كربل;ءBGN: Al-Karbalā’; also spelled Karbala al-Muqaddasah) is a city in Iraq, located about 100 km (60 mi) southwest of Baghdad at 32.61°N, 44.08°E. In the time of Husayn ibn Ali’s life, the place was also known as al-Ghadiriyah, Naynawa, and Shathi’ul- Furaat.The city’s association with Shīˤa Islām have made it a centre of religious instruction as well as worship; it has more than 100 mosques and 23 religious schools, of which possibly the most famous is that of Ibn Fahid, constructed some 440 years ago.
prominence in Shīˤī is the result of the Karbala’s Battle of Karbala, fought on the site of the modern city on October 10, 680.Both Husayn and his half-brother ˤAbbās ibn ˤAlī were buried by the local Banī Asad tribe at what later became known as the Mashhad Al-Husayn. Later on city grew up around the tombs. Husayn’s tomb (View Larger Map) is a place of pilgrimage for many Shīˤa Muslims, especially on the anniversary of the battle, the Day of Āshūrā
Battle of Karbala (Truth V/s Falsehood)Date October 10, 680 (Muharram 10, 61 AH)Location Karbala, The battlefield was a desert region located beside one of the branches of the Euphrates River, landscape about 100 kilometers south of the Iraqi capital Baghdad,Reason Yazid l.a demanded allegiance from Husain – he knew too well that the acceptance of the entire Muslim community was of no value without Hussain’s acceptance. In reply to this unacceptable demand, Hussain majestically replied: “a person like me can never pledge allegiance to a person like him”, thereby highlighting the universality of the principles from which his stand stemmed from. Hussain rose to restore freedom, peace, equality and justice; qualities which the Divine Message had perfected but were constantly undermined by those who hijacked religion and acted in its name. In a will which he wrote before leaving Medina, Hussain wrote; “I have risen as I seek to reform the community of my grandfather. I wish to bid the good and forbid the evil.”
Result VICTORY OF TRUTH “The tyrant dies and his rule ends, the martyr dies and his rule begins.” — Soren Kierkegard Umayyad military gain victory physically but with in 3 years Yazid died and after a few decades the rule of Banu Umayya crumbled and came to an end. Being such a big king (of that time) there is no mark of his grave & not a single follower. Husayn ibn Ali is still alive in the hearts of Humanity millions of devotees who pay homage to them and renew, through their message, their eternal struggle against humiliation and oppression by visiting the Imam Hussein Shrine regularly & especially in Muharram on the Day of Ashura, the anniversary of Husayn ibn Ali’s death. You can check out this right away from live link http://www.imamhussain.org/html&docs/ar/live.html The best lesson which we get from the tragedy of Karbala is that Hussayn and his Companions were the rigid believers of God. They illustrated that numerical superiority does not count when it comes to truth and falsehood. The victory of Hussayn despite his minority marvels me. Thomas Carlye
CombatantsHusayn ibn Ali (The Grandson of the Last Yazid ibn Muawiya (la)He was not physicallyprophet Mohammad [P.B.U.H]) present in the battle as he send the troops under the command of Umar ibn Sa’ad Commanders Abbas ibn Ali Umar ibn Sa’ad StrengthHussein ibn Ali’s group consisted of On the other side were the armed forces ofnotable members of Muhammad’s close Yazid I, about 30 - 40,000+ men led byrelatives, around 72 men (Which were 18 Umar ibn Sa’ad.family members and 54 supportersincluding a 6 month old baby and elderlypersons) and their womens and childrens Casualties123 (72 Men and 51 children) 5000 + (according to Shia tradition)
DurationDespite the figures of 72 men against thousands, it is recorded that thebattle went on from dawn to dusk. Just Imagine the courage that 72stood in front of thousands for such a long time. SummaryIt intrigues historians that Hurr, one of the highest ranked commandersof Yazid’s army, who was the man responsible for stopping Hussein atKarbala, left the overwhelming force of thousands of soldiers and joinedHussein with his son and a slave.At the 10th of Muharram he died byHusain’s side in the battle killing 41 soldiers.According to Arab culture, anyone accompanying women and childrenwith him is a sign of peace. It was here that Hussain, his family and Shi’a(Partisans) were confronted by the army of Yazeed. Hussain refused topledge allegiance to the tyrant and Yazeed declared war on him.
Hussain was forced to battle the army of Yazeed, but not before thearmy had cut off their food and water supply for three days. Forthree whole days and nights, enduring temperatures around 55°Cwithout food or water, the males of the camp, totaling 72 (includingthe elderly and children) fought valiantly and were all brutallyslaughteredHussain was forced to witness the savage mutilation of Abbas – hisbrother, the callous murder of his nephew Qasim, the torture andexecution of his innocent son Ali Akbar and finally the depraved murderof his six month old baby boy – Ali Asghar. Left alone finally Hussainwas also attacked, his body was showered with arrows, his head wassevered and the hooves of the horses of Yazeed’s cavalry trampled onhis body. Husain and their supporters were decapitated; their bodieswere mutilated and trampled by horses.
The aftermath of the battle led to the humiliation of the women ofHussain’s camp. Their tents were looted and burnt, leaving thewomen to the mercy of Yazeed’s soldiers. The aggrieved childrenwho had lost their fathers were beaten. The captives were made totravel from Karbala to Syria – Damascus, a journey of approximately750 miles. Their Headscarves were snatched off and they were madeto trek barefoot, chained, shackled, and taken on camels withoutsaddles, due to which many of the children fell off the camels and thewomen were not allowed to even stop and help their children. Thegraves of these children can still be seen in the desert betweenKarbala and Kufa.Distance between Medina and Karbala about 1,100 miles.Distance between Ibn Ziyad in Kufa & Yazid in Damascus about 750 miles.Average travel by camel per day: 30-45 miles.
The heads of all the males including that of Hussain’s six-month old son were impaled on spikes (as war trophies) andparaded through the streets. On arriving at Damascus, theywere paraded in the town, for all to see and shun. A barrage ofstones, rubbish and verbal abuse bombarded them. They werekept in prison for over a year It is to be noted that people whodid this with the family of Mohammad were themselvesMuslims.The insidious whisper comes: “Truth after all can never die.”
The battle of Karbala finds great similarity with the one at Badr – Islam’s firstbattle. It was the holy Prophet [PBUH] at Badr who fought with 313 die-hardsupporters against a formidable army of some 1000 men. That day against allodds the small group won a decisive victory, and paved the way for a futureMuslim empire. 56 years later it was his grandson with just 72 loyal men, whofought against an impossible opposition of several thousands to save Islam fromthe clutches of tyranny.Karbala was a battle of truth against falsehood, humanity against villainy,righteousness against evil, justice against corruption. The much loved grandson ofthe Prophet [PBUH] stood in the scorching heat of Karbala along with hiscompanions, devoid of water but determined. His loved ones, including his sixmonth old son, fell martyr one after the other. In spite of this he repeatedlyinvited the other party towards righteousness and forbade them from evil andimmorality, but it all fell on deaf ears. When the time arrived for him to marchahead all alone, he did it in a fashion which was reminiscent of his illustrious fatherAli
Husain fell in the desert of Karbala on that fateful Friday, the 10th of Moharram61H. Worse was to follow. The bodies of the martyrs including the Imam werenot only refused a proper burial but were trampled under the horses’ hooves andwere left for the birds. The Kufan army looted the belongings of Husain. Imam’sfamily including his women-folk and tender children were humiliated and takencaptives after burning down their camps. The women were paraded withuncovered heads. It wasn’t ISLAM!!! “If Hussain fought to quench his worldly desires, then I do notunderstand why his sisters, wives and children accompanied him. It stands toreason therefore that he sacrificed purely for Islam.” —Charles DickensThe severed heads of the martyrs including Husain were raised on spears. HowYazid played with Husain’s head and the emotions of Imam’s family is a welldocumented fact. Karbala to this day remains a heart-wrenching story ofexemplary courage and bravery to uphold the real principles of Islam. “In a distant age and climate, the tragic scene of the death of Husainwill awaken the sympathy of the coldest reader.” — Edward Gibbon
http://moralsandethics.wordpress.comCheck out Movies on KarbalaFor more details on this Subject refer to below links1. What is Muharram ?2. Lesson from Kerbala 13. Lessons from Kerbala 24. Lessons from Kerbala 35. Ashura, an eternal saga of conviction and courage6. Hussein (A): The End of a Tragedy or the Beginning of an Uprising?