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How Islam Immortalized Imam Hussein (a.s.); The Blessed Infant

On the third of the blessed month of Sha'ban, the fourth year after Hijrah and a year after the birth of Imam Hassan (a.s.), the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) was given news of the birth of Imam Hussein (a.s.). He hurried to the house of Imam Ali and Fatimah al-Zahra' (a.s.).

"O Asma'," he ordered Asma', the daughter of Umays, "bring me my son."

She took the newborn to him. The infant was wrapped in a piece of cloth. The face of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) lit up upon seeing his grandson. He took him in his arms. He recited the call to prayer (adan) into his right ear, and read the shorter version (iqamah) in his left ear. He, then, placed the baby in his lap and wept.

"May my father and mother be your sacrifice," Asma' asked him, "why are you crying?"

"Because of my son," he replied.

"He is a newborn baby," she said.

"O Asma'," he said," After me, the transgressing party will kill him. May Allah never grant them my intercession."

Then he said: "Asma', don't tell Fatimah about this, for she has just given birth to him." 1

Then the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) turned to Imam Ali (a.s.) and asked him: "What name have you chosen for him?"

"I would never precede you in naming him, O Messenger of Allah," he replied.

At that moment, the revelation descended on the beloved Messenger, Muhammad (s.a.w.), with the name of the infant. Having received the divine order, the Messenger (s.a.w.) looked at Imam Ali (a.s.) and said:

"name him Hussein."

Seven days later, the Prophet (s.a.w.) hastened to the house of al-Zahra' (a.s.). He slaughtered a lamb as an offering to Allah and ordered the infant's head shaved, its weight in silver to be given to the poor. Thus, the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.) applied the very same Islamic rites he had earlier performed for his brother, Imam Hassan (a.s.). 2

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1. Al-Tabrasi, I'lam al-Wara bi A'lam al-Huda (Acquainting the People to the Leaders of Guidance), p. 217.

2. Ashi'a min Hayat al-lmam al-Hassan bin Ali (a.s.) (Glimpses of the Life of Imam Hassan bin Ali (a.s.), (Tehran: Al-Balagh Foundation).

Adapted from the book: "Imam Hussein Bin Ali" Published by: "Al-Balagh Foundation"

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