Rafed English

Clarification of the Misconceptions about Azadari

A contemporary scholar Mr Abdul Ghaffar in the daily 'Hindustan' dated 21 June 1993 has raised certain objections about the 'Welcome to Mourning' (Istiqbale Aza). Perhaps his one-sided study might have plunged him into misunderstandings. Hence it became imperative for us to clarify his misgivings.

The summary of his objections, based on five premises, which are as follows:

1. Certainly the assassination of Hussain will kindle fire in the hearts of the believers until eternity, which will never extinguish. It is a tradition from the Holy Prophet (S) ? What is the proof of its authenticity ?

2. The mourning of Prophets (A) before Imam Hussain (A) is a meaningless thing.

3. The survival and resilience of Islam is based on its cardinal principles of Namaz, Roza, Hajj etc. Islam thrives on it and not on mourning of Imam Hussain (A).

4. Mourning and self-flagellation for Imam Hussain (A) is forbidden.

5. Mourning and establishing such gatherings does not have any relevance to the religion. Man should follow Qur'an and Traditions and not the practice of scholars.

Now we shall reply to the above-mentioned objections so that the foundation and base of Azadari may become evident to one and all. And none shall remain unaware of the existence found in reliable and authentic traditions.

Refutation to the First Objection

"Martyrdom of Hussain kindles such a fire in the hearts of the believers which will never extinguish."
This tradition is but a part of a lengthy narration which Imam Sadiq (A) had related from Holy Prophet (S). Complete tradition is quoted below:

Imam Sadiq (A) said:

"When Imam Husain (A) came to the Holy Prophet (S), he looked at him, hugged him and said: 'Martyrdom of Husain will generate such a fire in the hearts of believers which will never be extinguished.' Then he said' My parents be sacrificed for him who is the fountain-head of all mourning'. When the companions asked 'What does it mean?' He replied 'That no believer will remember him but mourning and weeping.'

The tradition was recorded by a great scholar of 8th Century AH. Shamsuddin Mohammed Aalim (died in 786AH.), who was given the title of' Collection of merits and excellences and total knowledge of the world and hereafter' by Shaikh Mohammed Yusuf Quraishi Shafei in his book 'Majmua' quoted from the book 'Al-Anwaar' written by Shaikh Abu Ali Mohammed bin Abi Bakr Hammam bin Sohail Katib Iskafi (died in 336 AH.), who was student of the renowned Sunni scholar of 3rd century AH. Abdur Razzaq. The narrator of this tradition was Ahmed bin Abi Hiraasa Bahuli, who related from Ibrahim bin Ishaque, who related from Hemad bin Ishaue Ansari, who quoted from Ibn Sinan and who narrated from Imam Sadiq (A).

This tradition has surprised our respected brethren Abdur Ghaffar but its authenticity was supported by Bukhari in 'Al Adab Al Mufrad', Ibn Majah in his 'Sunan' in the chapter of Merits of Imam Hassan and Imam Hussain (A). Hakim has written about it in his 'Mustadrak' pg 77 and Ahmad Bin Hambal in his 'Musnad' vol 4, pg 172. Apart from these stalwarts, other traditionalists have also narrated it in their books on the authority of Yali Bin Murrah and Jafar Bin Abdullah Ansari that 'Once the Holy Prophet (S) alongwith his companions was going to attend a feast. He saw Imam Husain (A) playing with his friends.

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