Stops on the Imam Husayn's (a.s.) Journey - Part 3
- :Ali Hussain Jalali
Here, a man met the Imam and asked him, "Why did you leave the house of your grandfather? (meaning Medinah)"
The Imam replied, "Indeed, the Umayyads called our most honorable kin bad names, and I was patient. Then, they took my wealth, and I was patient. And they sought my blood and I ran away. Indeed, by God, they are going to kill me. Then, God will humiliate them, making them the most humiliated nation in the world."
Here, four people from Kufah met the Imam. The Imam asked them about the situation of the people and they told him, "The dignitaries were bought by bribes. As for the common people, their hearts are with you, but their swords are against you."
They told him how Qays Ibn Mashar al-Saydawi was killed. Then, the Imam recited, "Among the believers are men who are true to whatever covenant they made with God. Some of then have fulfilled [their covenant], some of them are waiting [to do so], and have not made any changes [in the religion]." 1
Tarammah Ibn 'Uday al-Ta'y said to the Imam, "I saw people before leaving Kufah and asked what the commotion was. They said that they were being recruited and sent to fight against the Imam. I urge you, by God, not to go to them. I do not see anyone with you. I request you to come with us to our mountain called Aja. We were able to isolate ourselves from the kings of Ghassan and Himyar. If you stay with us for ten days, I guarantee you that 20,060 of my tribe, the Tays would follow you and do whatever you order."
The Imam refused and said, "We have a promise between us and these people and we can not leave until we see the result."
The Imam thanked him, but refused. Then Tarammah asked permission to go by himself to deliver what he has to deliver for his family, and then return to join the Imam's camp. The Imam allowed him to do so, and he went, but he was too late in his return. On his way, he heard that Imam was killed.
QASR BANI MAQATIL
When the Imam set camp here, he saw another camp already set. He asked about them and they told him it is for 'Ubaydullah al-Ju'fi. When the Imam sent some of his followers to see him, Ju'fi asked them what they wanted, and the messenger said, "This is a message from Imam Husayn, asking you to help him."
Ju'fi replied, "I swear by God, I left Kufah only because of what I saw, that people were leaving to fight against him and I knew that he is going to be killed and I am not going to help him. That is why I left Kufah so that I would be safe. I do not want to see him and I do not want him to see me."
The messengers brought the reply back to Imam Husayn. The Imam got up, and with a group of his followers, went to Ju'fi's camp. Ju'fi received him well, honored him, and said, "I have not seen anyone of better character or more handsome than Husayn."
Then, Ju'fi asked the Imam if he used red henna or black dye to dye his beard.
The Imam replied, "O! Aging and gray hair came to me soon."
When they sat, the Imam said, "Your people have written to me and asked my help and invited me to come to them. Now, it appears that it is not the case. You have sins in your life. Do you wish to erase them by repentance?"
Ju'fi said, "What is that, O son of the Messenger of God!"
The Imam replied, "You help the son of the daughter of the Prophet and fight by his side."
Ju'fi said, "Indeed, I know that whoever follows you will be happy in the Hereafter, but what can I do to help? I saw no one in Kufah who would help you, and I do not like to die. Therefore, I give you my horses as gifts to you. This horse of mine, which is called Malhaqah, is the best horse to give victory to me, and I was not willing to give it to anybody in my life."
The Imam replied, "If you are not willing to fight with us, we do not need your horses and we do not need you." Then, the Imam quoted, "And I am not one who takes the support of people who are astray." 2
The Imam said to Ju'fi "I do not take those who are astray as helpers. Now I will advise you as you have advised me. If you are able to avoid our call and not watch us die, do so. Indeed, whoever hears us and does not help us will go to hell."
Also at this stop, the heads of two other Arab tribes met the Imam. The Imam asked them, "Are you coming to help us?"
They said, "We have children and we have been trusted with the wealth of people and we want to keep their trust."
The Imam said the same to them, "Leave. Do not hear our call for help. Indeed, whoever hears our call for help and does not help us will end up in hell."
At the end of the night, the Imam ordered his followers to leave Qasr Bani Maqatil
When the Imam's caravan came near this place, they saw a man on a horse coming towards them. He was carrying a message from Ibn Ziyad to Hurr.
Hurr came and read the letter to Imam Husayn, "Be firm with Husayn. When you read my letter, do not let him camp anywhere but in the desert where there is no water and no fortification."
The Imam said, "Then, let us go to Nineveh or Ghadariyyah or Shufayyah."
Hurr replied, "I cannot do that because the messenger is a spy on me."
Zuhayr Ibn al-Qayn said, "O, grandson of the Messenger of God! To kill these people now is easier than fighting with the reinforcements that will come after them. Let us start fighting and finish them. After these will come people that we will not be able to fight."
The Imam said, "I am not going to start the fighting."
Zuhayr said, "There is a village here on the Euphrates and has a fort and the Euphrates crosses it. Let us go there."
The Imam asked, "What is it called?"
He said, "It's called Aqr (in Arabic, means 'the cutting'."
The Imam said, "I seek refuge with God from Aqr."
Then, the Imam asked Hurr to let him go a little bit further. Hurr agreed and the Imam's caravan went with Hurr's troops following behind until they reached Karbala'.
1. The Holy Qur'an; Sura of al-Ahzab 33:23
2. The holy Qur'an; Sura of al-Kahf 18:51.
Adapted from the book: "Karbala & Ashura" by: "Ali Hussain Jalali"
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