Imam Hussein's (a.s.) Humbleness
- :Al-Balagh Foundation
Once Imam Hussein (a.s.) passed by poor men eating crumbs of bread on a mat. He greeted them and they invited him to their meal. He sat among them and said: "If your food were not alms, I would have eaten with you. Come home with me," he asked them. There, he fed them, clothed them and provided them with money. 13
One could easily detect the depth of his humbleness through examination of this vivid testimony, particularly when we take into consideration that Imam Hussein (a.s.) was the political and ideological figure who was appointed as the legitimate leader of the Muslims by Allah, through His Messenger (s.a.w.).
As for his social position, he was so matchless and unique, that Ibn Abbas, the revered companion of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.), used to hold the stirrup of his horse when he would mount it. Ibn Abbas was older than Imam Hussein (a.s.), but he did this out of his respect for him. 14
It is because of his glorious social status that the people would dismount from their horses and camels, on the way to Mecca to perform their pilgrimage, as long as he would travel on foot.
Another example reflecting his humble nature is that of his acceptance of an invitation to having food with the poor. He encountered a number of poor men. Having had their food they hastened to ask him to share with them. He dismounted from, his horse saying, "Surely, Allah doesn't like the haughty." He partook of their food and said: "I have accepted your invitation. Won't you accept mine?"
"Certainly, we Will," said they. He took them to his house and said to al-Rabab, his wife, "Bring us what you have been storing." 15
He did care for the people. He would always help them, even though, for the most part, they wouldn't recognize his legitimate right. Shu'aib bin Abdul-Rahman is reported to have said: "On the way of al-Taf (battle of Karbala', wherein he was martyred) a mark was seen on the back of Hussein bin Ali (a.s.). Imam Zain al-Abideen (a.s.) (his eldest son, and the son who survived the battle) was asked about it. 'It is the trace,' he replied, 'of the bag, which he puts on his back (carrying food) to the house of the widows, orphans and the poor." 16
This fact attests to his remarkable humbleness, his care for the ummah, his awareness and deep feeling of his responsibility toward the people.
13. Manaqib Aal Abi-Talib (Virtues of the Family of Abu-Talib (a.s.)), His Good Traits, Ibn Shahrashoob.
14. Al-Majalis al-Saniyyah, vol. 1, Fourth Majalis, and Tadhkirat al-Khawas, Ibn al-Jawzi, p. 245.
15. Ahlul-Bait, Imam's Modesty and Asceticism, Abu Alam.
16. Manaqib aal Abi Talib, His Good Traits.
Adapted from the book: "Imam Hussein Bin Ali" Published by: "Al-Balagh Foundation"
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