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Causes of the Revolution (Part 7) from the book “The life of Imam Husain ('a)”


Islamic Articles - Tragedy of Karbala

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3. Sacrificing his property

The chief of the nobles sacrificed all his property and whatever he possessed in the path of Quran and the way of religion. For the Umayyad beasts moved to the camps of His Eminence after his martyrdom and plundered whatever they could find over there. So much so that even sheets and head coverings were not left for the ladies.

The plunderers took away these also. In this way they exhibited a decadent behavior and their conscience which had been completely transmogrified.

4. Taking the ladies of his family with him

One of the important aspects of his planning for the great revolution was that he took along the ladies of the family of prophethood to Kerbala while he knew that they would have to suffer untold hardships. When Ibn Abbas restrained him from this step he told him:

“Indeed Allah has desired to see them in captivity…”[1]

Through this His Eminence wanted to fulfill his everlasting message in liberating the Ummah from the slavery of the Umayyads…Those exalted ladies had a very significant role in the overall goal of the chief of the martyrs.

They awakened the people from a sleep that had overpowered them and destroyed the awe of the Umayyad rule. The door of opposition to that regime was opened by them. If it hadn’t been so none would have dared to utter a single word against the tyrants and transgressors. Whoever studied the aim of the Holy Imam (‘a) deeply has understood this meaning.

Some scholars and writers have pointed out this matter and some of them are as follows:

A. Imam Kashiful Ghita: Imam Shaykh Muhammad Husain Aale Kashiful Ghita (q.s.) in many of his writings has emphasized that the coming out of Imam Husain (‘a) with his family members towards Kerbala was to perfect the aim and to reach his objective of destroying the Umayyad rule and he says:

“Have you any doubt that if only Husain and his sons had been martyred and those noble ladies had not stepped forward in these circumstances to confront those tyrants the killing of His Eminence would have indeed been forgotten and no one would have arisen to take the revenge of his blood.

His blood would have been wasted. Husain knew that there was no other option for him. No one, other than those great ladies, was capable of the tasks they accomplished. Hence it became incumbent for

His Eminence to take them along and it was not only to have them made captives in oppression. It was actually because of a political point of view and deep thought, that is the completion of aim and achievement of objective of destroying Yazid’s rule and that he rushed to finish them off before the people may apostatize to their former infidelity of the period of Ignorance and that they destroy Islam…”[2]

B. Ahmad Fahmi: Ustad Sayyid Ahmad Fahmi says, “Husain (‘a) realized that he would be martyred because he was aware of the evil, debauchery and tyranny of Yazid.

After the killing of Husain, Yazid would have got a free hand to torture the progeny of the Prophet (s), kill the
innocent children, defile the honor of ladies and take them and remaining children from wilderness to wilderness and from town to town seeing which the people would be shocked that no greater revenge can be taken from women and children after killing their men and youths.

Under such circumstances His Eminence wanted to take revenge from Yazid in his caliphate and to destroy him while he was in full power and position. And in fact it happened in the way His Eminence had desired.

What Yazid and his group did had a profound effect on the conscience of the community because he had behaved in such a horrible manner with the progeny of prophethood, put to such disrespect, ladies who had not seen anything but chastity, purity and honor. These actions of theirs motivated the poets to versify the defects and evils of the Umayyads.

The majority of Muslims began to despise the Umayyad Caliphate and the hearts of believers were enraged. On the basis of this, Husain (‘a) killed more severely than his own slaying.”[3]

C. Ahmad Mahmud Sobhi: Dr. Ahmad Mahmud Sobhi says: “At the time he (His Eminence, Husain) did not accept but that he took his family members along with himself.

So that people may see how evil his enemy was such that he neither did anything acceptable to religion nor anything permitted by humanity.

Therefore whatever is done to them along with the spilling of his blood in the desert would not go in vain and that severe allegations are made against him when there was no impartial witness upon everything that passed between them and their enemies.”

Khanam Dr. Binte Ash-Shati says:

“Zainab, Husain’s sister, destroyed the victory of Ibn Ziyad and Bani Umayyah and she put drops of fatal poison in the goblets of the victors.

And all political events that occurred after that like the revolt of Mukhtar, revolt of Ibn Zubair, downfall of Umayyad regime, establishment of Abbaside rule and after that the strengthening of Shia school of thought. The founder and originator of all these was Zainab al-Kubra.[4]

We wish to ask what would have been the circumstances if Husain (‘a) had been killed with his men without any witnesses from his side. The enemy would have shown the incident according to their routine and thus the martyrdom of Husain (‘a) in the desert would have been in vain…”[5]

These were some of the views in support of our own opinion. That is the aim of Imam Husain (‘a) in taking his ladies and children along with him to Kerbala was only to enlighten the general views and to explain the lofty aims for which he had undertaken an uprising. The chief of these aims being the elimination of the Umayyad rule whose danger was always perceived on Islamic belief.

Another view is also prevalent that Late Allamah Shaykh Abdul Wahid Muzaffar has explained. It is that His Eminence, Husain (‘a) took his family with him for the fear that the Umayyads would arrest them and put them into their prisons.

He says, “If His Eminence, Husain (‘a) had left the ladies in Medina, the government would have taken them under their control; rather they would have been arrested openly and cast into dark dungeons. In such circumstances, His Eminence would have had to choose one of the two options each of which was alone sufficient to destroy his objective:

One that he surrenders to the enemies and obeys them so that they may release his honored women and children while it was against the reform expected from the Imam that he had considered so necessary that he bore all hardships.

Or that he should continue to propagate his message and leave his family ladies at the mercy of the enemies while the ladies were such that they had always been secure in the veil of revelation, greatness and majesty. This was something that the modest spirit of Husain (‘a) could never accept and no sort of shame and modesty hindered the Bani Umayyah and no one in the Islamic world was capable of stopping them.

Bani Umayyah had no qualms in committing any kind of evil deed but their efforts were concentrated only for achieving their aims. They tried all means to reach their objectives even if the means were against religion and reason.

Have you not heard that the Umayyads cast into prison the wife of Amr bin Hamaq Khuzai, wife of Ubaidullah bin Hurr Johfi and wife of Kumayt Asadi also?[6]

Anyway, Imam (‘a) by his going out with the ladies destroyed the political program of Umayyads and shattered all signs of oppression that Muawiyah had established because the ladies of the family of revelation took upon themselves the active role to enlighten the society and create awareness in the people.

They made them cognizant about the true face of the Umayyads and tore away the disguise of religion that the Umayyads had donned. If these ladies hadn’t been there the effects of Imam Husain’s revolution would have been lost.

The greatest factor which made the revolution of Imam Husain (‘a) eternal is this very decision of taking along with himself the ladies of the Prophet’s household. This resulted in the spread of social reformation throughout the periods of history which had a prominent role in creating general awareness.

They took up the standard of faith that the Imam had hoisted and they propagated the principles for which the Imam (‘a) had given up his life. That is why the granddaughter of the Prophet and sister of Husain, Zainab binte Amirul Momineen, stepped forward to the field of Jihad.

While they were demolishing the forts of oppressors and through his sacrifice her brother was destroying their victories and giving them defeat and humiliation in their fate and was filling up their houses with grief and sadness.

Leader of Husain’s caravan, lady of the family of prophethood, Her Eminence Zainab (‘a) rushed to the battlefield while she drove away the mercenaries from her brother, the great Imam. She came forward till she came and stood over the mortal remains of her brother. The eyes of the army were fixed on her.

All the ears were attentive to hear what Her
Eminence had to say regarding the terrible calamities that had befallen her one after another.

Her Eminence, with absolute calmness, without being worried and shaken by the mountains of calamities looked up at the heavens and with the fervor of faith and warmth of belief said:

“O Allah, please accept this sacrifice from us.”

By this statement she threw the first spark of revolution against the Umayyad regime after the passing away of her brother. That army wished it had sunk into the earth. Because they realized what infamy they had committed and how they had destroyed the principles of Islam and centers of knowledge and faith.

When the prisoners of Ahle Bayt neared Kufa a huge crowd of Kufians came out to see the captives. The chief lady of the Prophet’s family delivered sermons to them that had them shocked and bewildered. People were astonished and neither could they pay attention nor understand how their houses fell into mourning.

They were grieving their terrible destiny because of the sin they had committed. When Her Eminence reached the palace of that rebellious tyrant, the big Satan faced her gloating over his success. He tauntingly asked, “How do you consider God has treated your brother?”

The lady of Bani Hashim glared at him and with great daring replied,

“Nothing but good! They were a people for whom God had decreed death and they went forward (bravely) to their resting places. God will gather you and us together. You will plead your excuses to Him and we will be your opponents before Him. At that time you shall see who is successful. May your mother mourn for you, O son of Marjana.”

These statements exposed Ibn Marjana and disgraced him in a way that was worse than a wound caused by spears.

When they reached Syria, through her effective sermon she shook up the throne of Umayyads. In this way she obtained a victory that not even well-armed armies could have achieved.

The decision of Imam Husain (‘a) to bring along with himself his household was based on a deep knowledge and foresight through which he was able to achieve a stupendous victory.
Here we conclude our discussion on the factors and causes responsible for the rising of Imam Husain (‘a).



[1] Biharul Anwar 44/364 (With a little difference)

[2] Imam Kashiful Ghita has discussed this in detail in his book, As-Siyasatul Husainiyah

[3] Raihaanatur Rasool, Pg. 167

[4] Batla Kerbala, 176-180

[5] Nazaria Imamat Nazd Shia Ithna Ashari, Pg. 343

[6] Tauzeeh al-Ghaamiz min Asraarus Sunan wal Faraidh, Pg. 297-298

Source: http://maaref-foundation.com/english/index.htm

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