Imam Hussein (AS) by Meysam rajani
The personality of the third Imam, the chief of Martyrs is no strange personality in the Muslim world. Every gathering, every majalis, every Islamic event does not shy off mentioning his name and mourning his sacrifice. Yet it is regrettable that we have confined the personality of Aba Abdillah to the event of Kerbala. It is sad that most of our knowledge of this great man is limited to the few months before and after his martyrdom. This was the Imam who was titled as one of the leaders of the youth of paradise by the prophet of Allah(SWT), and we do him an injustice if we limit his life to his final days.
One incident in which the Imam’s status is established was the event of Mubahela. While we do celebrate the incident (Eid), we should not fail to analyze the event itself. Bear in mind, this was a meeting between the Christian leaders of Najran and the prophet of Islam, a meeting of great religious and political significance. The presence of the Imam in this meeting enables us to recognize his position in Islam and the eyes of the prophet. He was an ambassador of Islam, even at the age of five. Sayed Ammar Nakshawani is one of his lectures says that the Imam’s presence portrayed the importance of youth in the religion of Islam. The youth are not supposed to wait till old age to become actively religious, they are as much a part of the religion as any other member, regardless of their age.
The Imam, on one occasion rewarded the teacher of his son, a teacher who taught the Imam’s son how to say Bismillah. Narrations say that the Imam rewarded him with bags of pearls and jewels, so much so that his companions were astonished at how much the Imam was rewarding the teacher. How many of us today value our scholars and teachers today? How many of us value our Madrassah and Qur’an ma’alims today? And how do we express our gratitude to them? The Imam was teaching us to value our teachers, as what they impart to us and our children is priceless.
Sayed also mentioned one more incident in his lecture that gives goosebumps to any listener. After the battle of Nahrwan, the prisoners of war were gathered and Aba Abdillah was walking among them. As he was, one of the enemy soldiers requested the Imam to loosen the ropes on his hand as they were causing him discomfort. The Imam with the permission of his father undid the ropes on the hand of Shim’r, the man who slaughtered the Imam on the 10th of Muharram. “What mercy did he show you when he sat on your chest on the 10th of Muharram”, Sayed said in his lecture. This is our Imam, a man with unbelievable generosity, a man with unfathomable mercy and a man with an affinity towards sacrifice (for Islam). Let us do ourselves a favor this holy month of Sha’ban, and read up on the life of the Imam – before, during and after Kerbala, we will be surprised what lessons we may learn from this great personality.
“Hussein is from me, and I am from Hussein” – The Holy Prophet (PBUH)