Rafed English

The Day of Arbain

The Day of Arbain
(Dr. Ibrahim Ayati - Imam Reza Network)

It has been recommended that on the occasion of the Arba'in, "40th day of Imam Husayn's Martyrdom - 20th Safar" of Imam Husayn and his devoted companions visit to the graves of the Holy Imam and the martyrs of the tragedy of Karbala should be paid. The day of Arba'in is one of the most crowded days in the sacred city of Karbala.

The Muslims and the Shi'ah in particular come to that glorious place from different parts of the world and send greetings to the great and magnanimous persons who performed the feats of highest, bravery, devotion and honor. Of course, the ceremonies of homage can be performed and one's attachment to the sacred mission of the martyrs can be expressed in any words and language. However, it will be much better that whatever has come down to us from the leaders of the religion with regard to the ceremonies of paying the homage should be performed in the same manner in which it has been recommended by the Holy Prophet and the Holy Imams, and the supplications mentioned in the Holy Qur'an itself should be given preference over others.

Safwan bin Mehran Asadi, this magnanimous person who was one of the distinguished companions of Imam Sadiq and Imam Kazim took Imam Sadiq from Madina to Iraq a number of times and the Imam used to hire his camel. Safwan himself also used to accompany the Imam and by means of the blessings of the companionship of the Imam, he identified the grave of Imam Ali which had not been identified till then, and remained in attendance upon it for twenty years. Safwan is one of the distinguished narrators and has narrated traditions from the Holy Imams. Amongst them are Ziyarat Waritha, the well-known homage of Ashura of Imam Husayn, Alqama's supplication, and a homage of Imam Ali. In his book entitled Misbahul Mutahajjid Shaykh Tusi has quoted Ziyarat Waritha from Imam Sadiq through Safwan. He (Shaykh Tusi) has also quoted Ziyarat Ashura through two media -one from Imam Muhammad Baqir through Alqama bin Muhammad Hazrami, and one from the sixth Imam through Safwan Jammal.

Safwan said to Sayf bin Umayra: "I was with Imam Sadiq when he performed homage at this place in this manner and recited this supplication (i.e. Alqama supplication)". What is surprising is that the supplication which is known as 'Alqama supplication' and is recited after Ziyarat Ashura has been quoted by Safwan from Imam Sadiq and not by Alqama from Imam Baqir. It should, therefore, have been called 'Safwan's Supplication' and it is not known as to why it has been called 'Alqama's supplication'. This very Safwan has also quoted one of the two homages of Arba'in of Imam Husayn from the sixth Imam. The second homage of Arba'in is the one, which was recited by Jabir bin Abdullah Ansari while paying the homage r to the grave of Imam and which has been quoted by Atiyya bin Sad bin Junada from the distinguished companion Jabir.

The sentences of the Ziyarat Arba'in of Safwan, as translated below are well known. They are the same sentences which, according to Safwan, were uttered by the sixth Imam while performing the homage to Imam Husayn: "I testify that you were alight in your noble fathers and the wombs of your pure mothers. The uncleanliness of ignorance did not contaminate you. The darkness of polytheism, blasphemy and perversion did not put its clothes on you. I testify that you are a pillar of the faith, a support for the Muslims and a refuge for the believers. I testify that you are the righteous, pious, praiseworthy and pure Imam, you guide and are yourself guided. I testify that only the Imams who are your descendants are the paragon of virtue and piety, the signs of guidance, the dependable medium and reliance for the people of the world".

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