Human emotions and tears have a strong connection that should create a feeling of sympathy and reality. Crying is a noble act of believers. Tears are an outward sign of believing in the truth.
So it can be surmised that one who believes in the truth that Imam Hussain ( S.A.) and ahlye bait and ashab were martyred with brutality on the burning sands of Karbala, deprived of food and water for three long days, will surely shed tears during ASHARA days, and wail and mourn for his mazloom Moula and his family, who were made to suffer hardships and deprivations, that none before them or none other after them, will suffer such, till the day of Kiyamah.
For mumineen Imam Hussain (S.A.) is Quran e Natiq and in Surah 5 Ayat 83 Allah says : ‘and when they listen to the revelations received by the Messenger, you see their eyes overflowing with tears, for they recognise the truth, and they say : ” Our Lord ! We believe, write us down amongst the witnesses.”
So attending Vaaz kablal waqt during ASHARA is an act of Ibadat. It is an act of being counted as witnesses of the sahadat of Imam Hussain ( S.A.)
Keep it simple and somber,just like getting up in the middle of night and praying Nifs Layl – you and your Allah. You and your Moula. Try to inculcate spirituality and compassion. The community – the OHBAT of ASHARA provides you a platform to rise above petty things of worldly living, and bring about a lasting transformation.
Each day as you hear the tragedy of Karbala unfold before you, with flowing tears and crying out aloud, you are proclaiming the truth and pleading to Allah to write your name among the witnesses, and thereby earn bountiful sawab and a secure and high station in Jannat.
Weeping and wailing is an innate instinct of human beings. Tears have many medical and psychological benefits, but as mumineens our aim and focus is life is azar in Akherat.
If one is compassionate and caring it is natural for them to shed tears on the tragedy of Karbala. However, all humans are not the same. There are many who are very good human beings, but are more concerned with practicality of things, and tears do not come easily.
There is good news for such type of mumineen. New studies and research has established that there is potential to cultivate compassion – the emotional state of caring for people who are suffering, and to be moved by tragic incidents, and thereby be motivated towards altruistic behaviour.
For mumineen who are more focussed on practicality of things, I share just one medical benefit from numerous others. People who are more compassionate and easily shed tears and have emphaty, in such individuals one hundred percent more DHEA – a hormone that counteracts ageing process and 23% less cortisol – the stress hormone are produced.
The ancient Buddhist technique of Zen Meditation was used in a study conducted at the Waisman Centre for Healthy Minds at the University of Winsconsin – Madison and conclusively established that Compassion can be cultivated, resulting in greater altruistic behaviour and related changes in neural systems underlying compassion.
Compassion helps in becoming more attuned to our emotions and at the same time become more altruistic, thus reaching out more to the marginalised and suffering humanity.
So the OHBAT of this ASHARA is to develop more compassion and understanding, to reflect inward. Noha na saheb Sayedna Moyyad Sirazi’s proclamation that mumineen should do ‘Izhar e Noha wa aveel’ – aveel meaning to cry out aloud. This than is the template of this ASHARA OHBAT. One should proclaim aloud. This ASHARA make a shift within, and see for yourself a transformed more compassionate and spirituality radiant you. Dear readers, this than is your OHBAT.
The sahadat of Imam Hussain (S.A.) has very deep connotations and meanings. It is not merely a battle between Hashemites and Ummayads, as those against the Shia faith would want the world to believe. For mumineen it is an intregal part of our being in this world, the very life purpose and our ultimate salvation.
The skies shed blood in grief of Imam Husayn (as)
Allamah Ibn Hajar Makki writes:
“Abu Said says that on the day of the martyrdom of Husayn, there was fresh blood found under every stone lifted; and the sky also rained blood whose result was evident on clothes for ages. Abu Naim says that on the day of the martyrdom of Imam Husayn (as) our containers (of water) were full of blood.”
Sawaiq al-Muhriqa, Page 192
Ibn Hajar Makki was a dushman of Ahly Bait, but still the historical truth was vouchsafed by him.
Each Ashura we loudly proclaim and bear witness to this historical truth.
Tears will flow easily, crying aloud will be natural, for as the tragedy of Karbala unfolds before you in the Vaaz, your compassionate soul will connect and feel the suffering of the humanity at large.
As you lovingly look at your child sitting besides you and doing matam, a child whom you have showered with so much material comforts and pleasures, your compassionate heart will make you cry aloud at the thirst of nanhe Masoom Aliasgar restless and weak in his cradle, and it will connect you with those unfortunate children around the world, those beautiful innocent children, caught in the ravages of war – the reckless and purposeless tragedy that is engulfing the Muslim world in particular.
The OHBAT this ASHARA should be to free yourself from delusion, self centeredness and self concern. As one shayar has rightly said – ‘ sirf bahar se nahi, andar se bhi badalna hoga – arzoo e azam karna hoga – nafs e ammara ke lashkar se ladna hoga. So these are the thrust areas for you my dear readers this ASHARA.
Compassion is not merely an emotion, it is doable, visible and seeks practicality. If you have compassion and emphaty, you are blessed, and noha wa aveel will come natural to you. For you the OHBAT will be to become a radiant example for your fellow mumineen.
For others there is still time, cultivate compassion and emphaty, taking vasila of Imam Hussain ( S.A.)
The Nasihat of Sayedna A’li Qadr Muffadal Saifuddin Moula (TUS) ‘ chalo ae payara azizo chalo’ be your guiding light.Ameen
Abde Sayedna (TUS)