1st Safar - The Day of Grief for Ahlul Bayt a.s.

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Extract from Nafasal Mahmoom book:-

After Kerbala -Entry of Ahlulbayt & the Blessed heads in Damascus, Syria

Shaikh Kaf'ami, Shaikh Bahai and Muhaddis Kashani narrate, that on the first day of the month of Safar, the head of Imam Husain (a.s) was brought into Damascus. Yazeed placed it in front of him and poked at his teeth with the staff of his hand while saying, "I wish those of my clan who were killed at Badr, and those who had seen the Khazraj clan wailing (in the battle of Uhad) on account of lancet wounds, were here.

 They would have hailed me with loud cries and said, 'O Yazeed! May your hands never stupefy', for we have killed the chiefs of his (the Prophet's) clan. I did so as revenge for Badr, that has now been completed. The Bani Hashim only played a game with sovereignty. There has come no Message (Risalah, from Allah), nor was anything revealed (as Wahy). I would not belong to the Khandaq family, if I had not taken vengeance upon the descendants of Ahmad for their deeds".

It is related in Manaqib from Abi Makhnaf, that when the head of Imam Husain (a.s) was brought to Yazeed, a pleasant aroma emanated from it that absorbed all other fragrances.

Sayyed Ibne Tawoos relates, that when the head of Imam Husain (a.s) as well as the captives neared Damascus, Sayyedah Umme Kulsum (a.s) told Shimr, "I desire something from you". Shimr asked her as to what it was, and she replied, "Enter us into the town from a door which is less crowded, while also command the bearers of the heads to move away from amidst the Camels, so that a few men may have a glimpse of us in this state". The wicked man, in reply to her answer, commanded that the heads be kept amidst the Camels, and then he took them from the midst the people who had gathered for a spectacle. Then he took them in this state until they reached a gate of the Grand Mosque of Damascus where the prisoners were stationed.

It is related, that when one of the virtuous Tabe'een saw Imam Husain (a.s)'s head upon the lance, he secretly disappeared from the midst his companions for a month. When he was questioned regarding the reason for it, he replied, "Do you not see what agony has befallen us?" Then he recited the following elegy, "They have brought your head O grandson of Mohammad (s.a.w.s), which is drenched in blood, it is as if they have purposefully killed the Prophet in your stead during the light of the day, they killed you thirsty and did not honour the interpretation and revelation (of the Qur'an) regarding you, they pronounce the Takbeer (Allaho Akbar) after having killed you, when in fact they have killed the Takbeer and Tahleel (La Ilaha Illallah)".

It is related in Bihar, as also Manaqib, through chain of transmitters from Zayd, who relates from his fore-fathers, that Sahl bin Sa'ad said: I intended going to my house, when I entered the central territory of Syria, I reached a town in which streams were flowing and there were green trees. I saw that the town had been decorated and there was merry and rejoicing all around. While the women were beating the tambourine and drum and were busy in amusement. I said to myself that I was well aware of the celebrations of the Syrians, while that day was not a day for celebration. I saw a group of people speaking to one another. I went upto them and said, "You are celebrating in Syria of which I am unaware". They said, "As if you are from the desert?" I replied, "I am Sahl bin Sa'ad, one of the companions of Mohammad (s.a.w.s)". They replied, "O Sahl! It is strange that the heavens do not rain blood nor does the earth swallow its inhabitants". I asked as to why they said this and they replied, "How strange! The head of Husain has been brought from Iraq as a present, while these people rejoice". I said, "How strange! The head of Husain is being brought in and they rejoice?"

I asked, "From which gate are they being entered in?" They pointed towards a door named Baab as Sa'at.  Suddenly I saw standards one after the other, and one horseman held a long pointless lance on which was mounted a head that resembled most to the Prophet of Allah (s.a.w.s) with regards to his cheeks than anyone else. Following the head were the women monted upon saddleless camels.

I went towards them and asked one of them, "Whose daughter are you?" She relied, "I am Sakinah, the daughter of Husain". I asked, "Do you have any desire ? I am Sahl bin Sa'ad, one of the companions of your Grandfather, the Prophet of Allah (s.a.w.s)". She replied, "Tell the bearer of this head to take it further away from our midst, so that the people may be busy in looking at it while the family of the Prophet of Allah (s.a.w.s) may be relieved from their sight". I went to the bearer of the head and said, "Do you desire obtaining four hundred Ashrafi and in lieu of this fulfil my desire?" He asked as to what was it, and I replied, "Take this head further away from the midst of these women". He agreed and took the Ashrafi.

They then put the head in a trunk and took it to the presence of Yazeed while I too accompanied them. Yazeed was seated upon a throne wearing a crown studded with pearls and rubies, while a group of the Qurayshite notables were seated near him. The bearer of the head entered therein and said, "Fill my stirrup with gold and silver, for I have killed the Master of the guarded ones, I have killed the best one with regards to father and mother, whose ancestry is the best one when the ancestry is discussed". Hearing this Yazeed said, "If you knew that he was the best among men, why did you kill him?" He replied, "In greed for a gift from you". Yazeed ordered him to be beheaded and it was complied. Then he placed the head of Imam Husain (a.s) in front of him and said, "How do you see this, O Husain?"

The author of Kamile Bahai relates the narration of Sahl bin Sa'ad briefly and says that he said, that I saw the heads mounted upon the lances while the head of Abbas bin Ali (a.s) was in the forefront. The head of Imam Husain (a.s) followed them while the women of the Prophet's family were behind the head. The head displayed magnificent awe while light emanated from it. A round beard, which had a few white hair in it and was dyed with Wasmah, seemed very much attractive. His eyes were large and dark, and eyebrows were joined together. His forehead was wide, nose long, while his lips were smiling raised towards the heavens, and his eyes were gazed towards the horizon. The wind was whirling his beard towards the right and left and it was as if he was the Commander of the faithful (Ali).

It is stated in the same book, that the Prophet's family was halted behind the door of Syria for 3 days, while the town was being decorated in a manner as was never seen before .  Five hundred thousand Syrian men and women, accompanied by tambourines, cymbals and drums wore new dresses and prepared themselves.

At the end of the day, with great difficulty, could they reach the gate of the palace of Yazeed bin Mu'awiyah due to the large crowd of men. A throne, studded with jewels, was laid for Yazeed and his house was decorated, while golden and silver chairs were kept surrounding his throne. The courtiers of Yazeed ordered the bearers of the heads to enter therein and they complied. They said, "By the honour of the commander! We killed the Progeny of Abu Turab (Imam Ali) and severed their origins". Then they narrated the entire episode and laid the heads in front of him. The Ahlulbayt (a.s) were imprisoned for a prolonged time.

The oppressive Syrians said, "We have never ever seen such beautiful captives. Who are you?" Sayyedah Sakinah (a.s), the daughter of Imam Husain (a.s), replied, "We are the captives of the family of Mohammad (s.a.w.s)". They were detained at the stairway of the mosque alongwith Imam Ali bin Husain (Zainul Abedeen) (a.s), who was in his youth. An old man from among the Syrians approached them and said, "Praise be to Allah that He has killed and destroyed you and put off the fire of revolt".

Then he said whatever he desired, and when he became silent, Imam Zainul Abedeen (a.s) told him, "Have you read the Qur'an of Allah?" And he replied in the affirmative. He said, "Have you read this verse: Say (O Our Messenger): I demand not of you any recompense for (the toils of the Prophethood) save the love of (my) relatives.' ?" He said, "Yes, I have". Imam (a.s) said, "We are from that very family. Then have you not read this verse: And give to the near of kin his due." He replied that he had read it, and Imam Sajjad (a.s) said, "We are one of those". Then he retorted, "Haven't you read this verse: Verily Allah intends but to keep off from you (every kind of) uncleanliness O you the People of the House, and purify you (with) a thorough purification?He said, "Why not", and Imam said, "We are the ones referred to herein". Hearing this, the Syrian man lifted up his hands towards the heavens and said, "O Lord! I disassociate myself in Your presence from the enemies and the murderers of the progeny of Mohammad (s.a.w.s). I frequently read the Qur'an but never ever pondered upon this until today".

It is quoted in Ithbaat al-Wasiyyah of Mas'oodi, that when Imam Husain (a.s) was martyred, Imam Zainul Abedeen (a.s) was brought to the presence of Yazeed alongwith the family, while his son Abu Ja'far (Imam Mohammad Baqir), who was two years and some months old, was also alongwith him. When Yazeed looked at him, he said, "O Ali! What did you behold?" Imam (a.s) replied, "That what had been decreed by Allah, the Mighty, the Sublime, before the creation of the heavens and the earth". Then Yazeed asked for the opinion of those who were present with him, while all of them consented upon his murder and uttered such futile words that I do not wish to quote. Then Imam Mohammad al Baqir (a.s) started his speech. He praised and glorified Allah and said, "They have opined to you as opposed to the opinion of the courtiers of Pharaoh. When he (Pharaoh) asked their opinions regarding Prophet Moosa (a.s) and Prophet Haroon (a.s), they said: Give respite to him and his brother. While these people opine that you should kill us, whilst there is a reason for this". Yazeed asked, "What reason?" Imam (a.s) replied, "They were sons of sober women while these men are the sons of unchaste women. For none other than the illegitimate sons would kill the Prophets and their progeny". Hearing this Yazeed bowed down his head (in shame).

Our Master Shaikh Sadooq relates from Fazl bin Shazan who says that I heard Imam Ali ar Reza (a.s) say that,  "When the head of Imam Husain (a.s) was brought to Syria, Yazeed ordered it to be kept upon the ground and an eating carpet was spread in front of it. He then ate facing it with his associates and drank wine. When they had finished, he ordered the tray to be kept below his throne. And he spread the sheet of backgammon upon the throne and started playing. He started mocking, while uttering the names of Imam Husain (a.s), his father (a.s) and grandfather (s.a.w.s), and when he would win, he would drink wine. Three times he drank wine and then threw some of it near the tray (May Allah's curse be upon him). Then whoever is one of our Shi'ah, should refrain from drinking wine and playing backgammon. Then whoever, when his sight falls upon wine and backgammon, remembers Imam Husain (a.s) and curses Yazeed and his progeny, Allah will forgive their sins even if they be equal to the stars".

It is related in Manaqib from Yahya bin Hasan, that Yazeed told Imam Zainul Abedeen (a.s), "I wonder at your father who named all his sons Ali". Imam (a.s) replied, "My father loved his father very much and hence named his sons Ali".

 from http://www.al-islam.org/journey-of-tears/8.htm


The Fourth Journey - Kufa to Shaam


Bibi Zainab's speeches had stirred Kufa. The people of Kufa were filled with remorse. There was unrest in the city. In the market place they were whispering: 'What have we done? How could we invite the Prophet's grandson and then desert him to be mercilessly butchered at Karbala’? How can we permit the Holy Prophet's grand daughters be paraded in the streets like slaves? What have we done?'


Ibn Ziyad feared that the people of Kufa might rise against him. He ordered that the prison be strictly guarded. No one was allowed to visit them. Only the most trusted guards were allowed in or around the prison. In the mean time messengers ran between Kufa and Damascus. Although at first Yazid had ordered that the captives be detained at Kufa until he had completed all the arrangements for their entry into Shaam (Damascus), because of the mood in Kufa, Ibn Ziyad was anxious to have the prisoners out of Kufa as soon as possible. It was agreed that they be taken to Shaam.


Once again the prisoners were assembled and a procession left Kufa. But this time the departure was kept secret from the people of Kufa and took place at night.

So began the fourth journey of tears! It was a long and difficult journey.


Who was the hero and who was the heroine of this journey through the Iraqi and the Syrian deserts? Was it Bibi Rubaab, who from her unsaddled camel kept on staring at Ali Asghar's cradle loaded on another camel carrying the goods looted from Husayn's camp during the Shaam al-Gareeba? Was it Sakina who now sat mournfully on her mother's lap staring at the 'alam of Hazrat Abbas and her mashk still tied to the 'alam, and who kept whispering: “I am not thirsty, Uncle, I am not thirsty!” Was the hero Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen who was made to walk all the way, the hot chains eating into his flesh?


Some times our Fourth Imaam would faint. His captors however knew no pity. They would flog him if he slowed down or fainted. On these occasions Bibi Zainab would intervene to stop the Imaam from being flogged to death.


This was the journey of which the hero was the valour of Hazrat Ali which ruled the heart of Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen and the heroine was the sabr of Fatimah Zahra which inspired Bibi Zainab.


The journey from Kufa to Shaam was a long one. It took over twenty days. The women and the children were exhausted. Their suffering was great! Quite often the children would faint under the scorching desert heat and fall off the camels.


The mothers would scream. Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen and Bibi Zainab would go looking for the children. Sometimes they would find them by the road side barely alive and there were occasions when they were discovered too late. Our fourth Imaam would dig a grave to bury the dead child. An historian revisiting this route a few years later discovered a large number of small graves on the way side!


Some Zakirs narrate the following story: Once Bibi Zainab looked at the camel on which Sakina was riding. Sakina was not there! She looked at all the other camels, Sakina was nowhere to be seen. She panicked. Where could Imaam Husayn's darling daughter be? She asked Shimr to untie her to that she could go and look for Sakina. At first Shimr responded with his whip. Unmindful of her own pain she kept on begging.


Shimr untied her with the warning that if she did not return soon he would flog Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen to death. Bibi Zainab ran in the direction from which they had travelled. Some distance away she saw an elderly lady holding Sakina affectionately, kissing her cheeks and wiping away her tears. She could hear Sakina telling the lady how her uncle Abbas had gone to fetch her water and how he had never returned. When Sakina saw her aunt she explained that she had fallen off the camel but the kind lady had looked after her. Bibi Zainab turned to the lady and said, “May Allah reward you for your kindness to this orphan!” The lady replied, “Zainab, my dear, how can you thank your own mother? Do you not recognize me?” As the lady lifted her face, Bibi Zainab saw that it was Fatimah Zahra!!


When the caravan reached the outskirts of Damascus Omar Sa'ad sent a message to Yazid that they had arrived. Yazid ordered that the caravan remain where it was until the morning. He wanted the people of Shaam to line the streets to look at the captives and witness his victory. In the meantime the streets through which the captives were to be marched were being decorated with flags and pennants.


Bibi Zainab had conquered Kufa. Now Shaam had come and was waiting for her!


The Court of Yazid


When at long last the caravan reached the outskirts of Damascus, a message was received by Umar Sa'ad that the prisoners were not to be brought into the capital until Yazid had completed all the preparations.


Yazid invited all the ambassadors, foreign dignitaries and leading citizens to his court. People were ordered to line up the streets. Musicians were asked to play music and dancers were told to dance in the streets. Such were the festivities organized by the Khalifah for the entry of the grandson and the grand daughters of the Holy Prophet of Islam into what had become the metropolis of the Islamic Empire!!


Surrounded by the dancers, the musicians and the jeering crowds of the citizens of Damascus the prisoners were led toward the palace of Yazid. The ladies who had never stepped outside their homes without their heads and faces being covered, had been forced to travel from Karbala’ to Kufa, and Kufa to Shaam bare headed and with their arms tied with a single rope. If any one of them stumbled, she was whipped. Never in the history of Islam had prisoners been treated with disrespect, let alone the cruelty meted out to the members of the Holy Prophet's household. And now, this ultimate insult of being led into the court of Yazid like a herd of cattle!


Bibi Zainab seemed to be drawing strength from some divine source. She wiped away her tears. Drew her hair over her face so as to hide as much of her face from the staring crowds as she could. Other ladies did the same. Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen straightened himself. Exuding dignity and confidence, he maintained his position behind the bearer of the lance upon which was mounted his father's head. Such was the jostle of the multitude thronging the streets that it took them more than twelve hours to traverse the short distance between the city gates and the palace.


They entered the palace and were made to stand in front of Yazid. The tyrant was dressed in his best finery. Imaam Husayn's head was formally presented to him by Umar ibn Sa'ad. Yazid, with a cup of wine in one hand, ceremoniously accepted the ultimate symbol of his victory and commanded Umar Sa'ad to call out the names of the prisoners.


And then, in his drunken arrogance, Yazid recited a few couplets which enshrine a diabolical confession, a confession that explains the history of the division in Islam and the motives not only his but of his father and grand father in accepting Islam! He said:


“If my venerable ancestors who fell at Badr fighting Muhammad had witnessed how the supporters of Muhammad's faith were thrown into confusion with thrusts given with my spears, they would be blessing me today. The Banu Hashim played a trick to win power. There was never any wahi to them nor did they receive any revelation. Today the souls of my ancestors and friends killed by Muhammad at Badr will rest in peace!”


The raison d'etre of the Umayyad dynasty was vengeance against Islam, a sanguine continuation of Uhud where Yazid'd grand-mother had been only partially successful in her determination to have Ali and Hamza killed in retaliation for the deaths of her father and brother at Badr!! Yazid never believed in Islam, and yet the system forced upon the people after the death of the Holy Prophet had resulted in this worst of all the hypocrites becoming the Khalifah of the Holy Prophet and the Ameer-ul-Mu'mineen of the ummah!!


Yazid looked at the prisoners lined up in front of him. He said: “It has pleased Allah to grant us victory! Look how He has caused the death of Husayn and humiliated his family!” He then recited an ayah of the Holy Quraan which means 'Allah grants honour to whom He pleases and brings disgrace upon whom He pleases.'


There were over seven hundred dignitaries sitting in the Court. They smiled and nodded approvingly. Bibi Zainab could stand it no more! She was filled with wrath. How dare this unclean man say such things? How dare he with his najis tongue recite from Holy Quraan? How dare he make mockery of the family of the Holy Prophet? In a loud and clear voice Bibi Zainab said: “O Yazid! Do you think that it is Allah who has caused you to commit all these foul deeds?


Do you blame the Rahman and the Rahim for the oppression we have suffered? Do you blame Allah for the death of the beloved grand son of his most beloved Prophet? How dare you make these false accusations against the Almighty? No, Yazid, it was not Allah! It is you, with your insatiable ambition and greed for wealth and power, who are the only cause of the suffering inflicted not only upon the household of the Holy Prophet but on Islam itself!


Do not forget what Allah has said in the Holy Book: Let not the unbelievers take it that the respite We give them would do them any good. We allow them time in order that they might continue to indulge in sin to their hearts' content. Indeed a humiliating punishment has been kept ready for them.


Do you think that by killing the grandson of the Holy Prophet and bringing us to your palace as prisoners, you have scored a victory against Islam? No, Yazid, no! Husayn with his blood has made sure that tyrants like you will not be able to use Islam as a toy to carry out their evil designs. The victory is not yours. The victory is of Husayn! The victory is of Islam!”


Yazid was stunned! The people present there could not but be moved by what this courageous lady had to say. This lady, who had seen and experienced great suffering, dared today defy the very man who had inflicted those sufferings. Who was she? They asked one another. When they learnt that she was the grand daughter of the Holy Prophet, their hearts began to fill with admiration!


In an effort to save the situation Yazid turned towards Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen and said: “Well you can tell us who has been victorious. Imaam looked at him and replied:


“Yazid, final victory can only belong to those on the right path. Let us look at you and look at Husayn. My father, whom you got killed so mercilessly, was the grandson of the Holy Prophet who had said that “Husayn is from me and I am from Husayn.” He was born a Muslim and all his life he upheld the laws and principles of Islam. You are the grandson of Abu Sufiyan and Hinda, who most of their lives fought Islam and the Holy Prophet!”


Yazid was now greatly embarrassed. To silence the Imaam he asked his muezzin to recite the adhaan. When the Muezzin cried out 'ash-hadu anna Muhammadar-Rasuul’ul-Lah' Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen, addressing Yazid, said, “Yazid speak the truth! Was Muhammad my grandfather or your grandfather!”


Yazid ordered the prisoners to be moved to a prison. This was not a prison. It was a dungeon! Only a part of it had any sort of ceiling. The rest was open to the sky. An iron grill surrounded the place so that no one could get in or out.


Bibi Zainab reports that the place was so cold at nights that no one could have proper sleep. During the day, it got hot like an oven. It is here that our fourth Imaam, still under chains, the ladies and the children spent many days of great agony and discomfort.


Bibi Sakina


Bibi Sakina was the youngest daughter of Imaam Husayn. She was a vivacious child, full of love and happiness. Everyone loved Sakina. She was also a very religious girl. She enjoyed reading the Holy Quraan and never missed her prayers. From the age of two she took great care to make sure that her head and face were properly covered when in public.


Sakina was Imaam Husayn's most beloved child. Our Imaam was often heard to say, “A house without Sakina would not be worth living in!” She always had a sweet and cheerful smile and a very friendly nature. Other children sought her company as much as the grown ups did. She was very generous and always shared whatever she had with others.


There was a special bond between Hazrat Abbas and Sakina. He loved her more than he did his own children. If Sakina requested for anything, Abbas would not rest until he satisfied her request. There was nothing that Abbas would not do to make Sakina happy.


During the journey from Madina to Mecca and then Mecca to Karbala’, Abbas was often seen riding up to the mehmil in which Sakina sat to make sure that she had everything she wanted. Sakina loved her uncle just as much. While in Madina she would, several times a day, visit the house in which Hazrat Abbas lived with his family and his mother, Ummul Baneen.


Like any other four-five year old when Sakina went to bed at night she wanted to spend some time with her father. Imaam Husayn would tell her stories of the prophets and of the battles fought by her grand-father Ali. She would rest her head on her father's chest and Husayn would not move from her until she fell asleep. When from the second of Muharram the armies of Yazid began to gather at Karbala’, Husayn said to his sister Zainab, “The time has come for you to get Sakina used to going to sleep without my being there!” Sakina would follow her father at night and Husayn had to gently take her to Zainab or Rubaab.


At Karbala’ when from the seventh Muharram water became scarce Sakina shared whatever little water she had with other children. When soon there was no water at all, the thirsty children would look at Sakina hopefully, and because she could not help them she would have tears in her eyes. Sakina's lips were parched with thirst.


On the Ashura day, she gave her Mashk to Hazrat Abbas. He went to get water for her. The children gathered round Sakina with their little cups, knowing that as soon as Hazrat Abbas brought any water, Sakina would first make sure that they had some before taking any herself. When Sakina saw Imaam Husayn bringing the blood drenched 'alam she knew that her uncle Abbas had been killed. From that day on Sakina never complained of thirst.


Then came the time when the earth shook and Sakina became an orphan! But even then she always thought of the others first. She would console her mother on the death of Ali Asghar and when she saw any other lady or child weeping Sakina would put her little arms around her.


Yes Sakina never again asked anyone for water. Bibi Zainab would persuade her to take a few sips, but she herself would never ask for water or complain of thirst!!!!


From the time when Imaam Husayn fell in the battle field, Sakina forgot to smile! Kufa saw her as a sombre little girl lost in thought. Quite often she would sit up at night. When asked if she wanted anything, she would say, “I just heard a baby cry? Is it Asghar? He must be calling out for me!”

Knowing that her weeping upset her mother, Sakina would cry silently and quickly wipe away her tears! In the prison in Shaam she would stare at the flock of birds flying to their nests at sunset and innocently ask Bibi Zainab, “Will Sakina be going home like those birds flying to their homes?”


Then one dreadful night Sakina went to bed on the cold floor of the prison. For a long time she stared into the darkness! The time for the morning prayers came. Sakina was still lying with her eyes wide open. Her mother called out: “Wake up, Sakina! Wake up, it is time for prayers, my child!” There was only the painful silence! Our fourth Imaam walked up to where Sakina lay. He put his hand on her forehead. It was cold! He put his hand near the mouth and the nose. Sakina had stopped breathing. In between sobs Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen said: “inna lil-Lahi wa inna ilay-hi raja’uun.”


How was Sakina buried? Zainab held the still child as Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen dug a grave in the cell. As the grave was being filled up after the burial the mother let out a scream! How could anyone console Bibi Rubaab? What could they say? They huddled around her, and the prison walls began to shake with the cry: “ya Sakina, ya madhloomah!!” Bibi Rubaab put her cheek on Sakina's grave and cried out: “Speak to me, Sakina! Only a word, my child! Speak to me!!”


Aza’ al-Husayn in Shaam


The tragedy of Karbala’ had begun to arouse great sympathy for the Ahlul Bait in Hejaaz and Iraq. Even in Damascus some people began to ask whether it was necessary to inflict so much sufferings on the members of the family of the Holy Prophet.


When the charming little Sakina died and the people of Damascus came to learn about the death of the little girl whom they had seen and come to admire, they began to talk openly about Yazid's cruelty. Yazid feared that the people might rise against him. He was now anxious to get rid of the prisoners.


He called Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen and told him that he was prepared to free them, and compensate them for the death of the martyrs. He also asked the fourth Imaam whether they wanted to remain in Damascus or return to Madina. Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen replied that he would consult his aunt Zainab.


When Imam spoke to Bibi Zainab she was grief stricken at the audacity of Yazid in offering compensation. She said, “Tell Yazid to talk of compensation with the Holy Prophet. We would certainly return to Madina. But first Yazid should provide a house so that we may hold mourning ceremonies for the martyrs in Damascus. We shall then go to Madina via Karbala’ to visit the graves of the martyrs.”


Imaam Zain ul 'Abideen conveyed the message to Yazid who after some hesitation agreed. In asking for a house to mourn the martyrs in Damascus, Bibi Zainab scored a major victory over Yazid. When the house was made available the ladies held Aza’ al-Husayn for seven days in the very city which was the capital of Yazid who had murdered Imaam Husayn.


The women of Damascus poured in to offer their condolences and Bibi Zainab and the other ladies would tell them of how the martyrs had been killed, how they had been denied water, how young children had been crying al-atash, how Imaam had taken Ali Asghar and pleaded for a few drops of water and how the baby had been slain. These tales so moved the ladies of Damascus that they would break into sobs and begin wailing and beating their chests.


Thus in the very house of the murderer Bibi Zainab laid the foundation of Aza’ al-Husayn. This is so much like the story of Hazrat Musa (A.S.). Firaun orders all the male children of Banu Israel to be put to death. Allah's miracle is that his Prophet of wahdaniyyah finds refuge in the palace of the very Firaun who had plotted to kill him!


These majlises have continued to this day. Every Muharram Shiahs all over the world gather together to mourn the tragedy which took place more that 1,350 years ago. These majaalis have a great meaning for us. Firstly, they mean that we love our Imaam and grieve for the suffering to which he was subjected.


Secondly they mean that year after year we protest against all that Yazid stood for. We make a solemn promise to Allah never to follow Yazid's foot-steps. In whatever country we may be, we have to remember that taking alcohol or any kind of drugs, is Yazid's way. To keep ourselves ignorant of Quraan or Islamic way of life, is Yazid's way. To oppress anyone, is Yazid's way. To indulge in any un-Islamic activity, is Yazid's way. We can not mourn Husayn and follow Yazid!! 


This is the sermon Imam Ali son of Hussain son of Ali son of Abu Talib (a.s) gave in Damascuse in front of the tyrant yazeed and his cruel followers, as well as the Islamic ummah (which was in a deep sleep).
The sermon was given after the tyrant yazeed slaughtered the beloved son and successor of the Prophet Mohamad (saws), Imam Hussain son of Ali, in Karbala and after taking the daughters of the Prophet with Imam Ali Al-Sajjad from Karbala to Kufa then to Damascus as hostages. The heads of Imam Hussain, his brothers&family members, and his companions were put on spears, and the family of Imam Hussain was treated the worst of treatments as if they weren't the progeny of the Prophet!
The sermon of Imam Ali Al-Sajjad (a.s) played an essential part in waking up the Islamic Ummah as Imam Ali reminded them of Allah (swt), his greatness and his graces, He reminded them of this world and how one shouldn't be fooled by it and should strive for the after life, the Imam then started to describe the Prophet and his progeny, He described the Prophet a description like no other, He described the successor of the Prophet, Imam Ali son of Abu Talib so that the people of Damascus can truly know who was Ali son of Abu Talib, He described his pruified mothers (especially Sayed Fatima Al-Zahraa (a.s)) and finally he ends his sermon by exposing the Umayads by describing the master of martyrs, Imam Hussain son of Ali and telling the people what kind of a murder occured in Karbala...

 The Sermon of 'Sayeda Zeinab '  (a.s.) in Al-Kufa

Sayeda Zeinab (a.s.), the daughter of Imam Ali Bin Abi Talib (a.s.), gave the following sermon in Ibn Ziad’s palace:

"Now then! O Kufans! O men of vaunt! O treacherous men! O retreaters! Beware! May your lament never cease and may your wailing never end. Verily your similitude is that of a woman who untwirls the threads spinned by herself. You have broken your pledges by deceit and there remains nothing in you except pretense, self-conceit, exorbitance and dishonesty.

You have adopted the flatter of maids and coquettishness of the enemies as your customs. 

Your similitude is of that of the expanse vegetation or jewellery in the graveyard. Beware! What an evil have you brought forth for yourselves that has invited Allah's wrath upon you and you have earned a place of fury in the Hereafter. You weep for my brother? Verily yes by Allah! You should weep, for you deserve it. Weep abundantly and laugh less, thus you are tainted with disgrace and trapped in contempt that you shall never be able to wash off.

How will you wash off the blood of the son of the 'Seal of Prophethood and the Mine of Apostleship' from yourselves, who was the Master of the Youth of Paradise, the General of the battlefield, and an Asylum of your group. He was a residence of repose for you and your well-being. 

He healed your wounds and safeguarded you against whatever evil came towards you. You approached him when you quarreled among yourselves. He was your best counsel and you relied upon him, and he was a lantern of your path. Beware! What evil have you brought forth for yourselves and what load have you put upon your neck for the Day of Judgment. Perdition! Perdition! Destruction! May your search go vain and may your hands paralyze that you have handed over the affairs of your provisions to the wind. 

You have occupied a place in Allah's wrath, while the stamp of contempt and misfortune is sealed upon your forehead. Woe be to you! Do you know that you have amputated the dear child of Muhammad (p.)? And what pledge have you broken off from him? And what endeared family of his have you brought out onto the streets? And what veil of sanctity have you snatched away from them? And what blood have you shed from him? What an awry thing have you brought forth that it is likely that the heavens would fall down and the earth would disperse, while the mountains would crumble down as much as the fill of the earth and the heavens. The bride of your affairs is hairless, unfamiliar, indecent, blind, ugly and sullen. 

You wonder why the heavens rain blood. The chastisement of the Hereafter is more disgraceful and there will be no helper. Let not this respite make you frivolous, for none has the power to anticipate upon Allah, the Mighty, the Sublime, and seeking vengeance does not lapse from him. No, not at all, your Lord is in ambush for you."


The Sermon of Sayeda Zeinab (a.s.) in Yazid’s palace

10 min clip of Yazid meeting and Sermon of Bibi Zainab (A.S.) & Imam Zain Ul Abideen (A.S.) [ENG SUB].  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2vkKK5y5VI&feature=related

Sayeda Zeinab (a.s.), the daughter of Imam Ali Bin Abi Talib (a.s.), gave the following sermon in Yazid’s palace:

“All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the Worlds. Allah’s blessing be upon His Messenger Muhammad and his entire progeny. True are the words of Allah, Who says: “Then the end of those who committed evil was that they disbelieved in Allah’s signs and they were ridiculing them.” (30:10).

Do you, Yazid, think that – when you blocked all our avenues of the earth and the horizons of the heavens before us, so we were driven as captives – that we are worthless in the eyes of Allah and that you are respectful in His eyes? Or is it because you enjoy with Him a great status? So, you look down at us and become arrogant, elated, when you see the world submissive to you and things are done as you want them, and when our authority and power became all yours?

But wait! Have you forgotten that Allah said: “Do not regard those who disbelieved that we grant them good for themselves; We only give them a respite so that they may increase their sins, and for them there is a humiliating torment.” (03:178).

Is it fair, O son of the “Released Ones” that you keep your ladies and bond maidens in their chambers (under protection), and at the same time you drive the daughters of the Messenger of Allah as captives with their veils removed and faces exposed, taken by their enemies from one land to another, being viewed by those at watering places as well as those who man your forts, with their faces exposed to the looks of everyone – near or distant, lowly or honorable, having none of their men with them nor any of their protectors?

But what can be expected from one descended from those whose mouths chewed the liver of the purified ones and whose flesh grows out of the blood of the martyrs? How can it be expected that one who looks at us with grudge and animosity, with hatred and malice, would not hate us –Ahl El-Beit? Besides, you, without feeling any guilt or weighing heavily what you recite saying: ‘They would have been very much delighted, Then they would have said, “May your hands, O Yazid, never be paralyzed.”’

How dare you hit the lips of Abu Abdullah (a.s.), the Master of the Youths of Paradise? But why should you not do so, since you stirred a wound that almost healed, and since all mercy is removed from your heart, having shed the blood of the offspring of Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him and his progeny, and the stars on the earth from among the family of Abdul-Muttalib? Then you cite your mentors as if you speak to them. Soon you shall be lodged with them, and soon you shall wish you were paralyzed and muted and never said what you said nor what you did.

O Allah, take what belongs to us out of his hands, seek revenge against those who oppressed us, and let Your wrath descend upon whoever shed our blood and killed our protectors! By Allah, you have burnt only our skin, you have cut only our flesh, and you shall come face to face with the Messenger of Allah, peace of Allah be upon him and his progeny, bearing the burdens of the blood which you have shed, the blood of his offspring, and of his sanctities which you violated, when Allah gathers them together and seeks equality on their behalf.

“And do not reckon those who are slain in the way of Allah as dead. Nay! They are living with their Lord, receiving their sustenance.” (03:169)

It is quite sufficient that Allah is your judge and Muhammad, peace and blessing be upon his progeny, is your opponent and (Archangel) Jibra’il as the supporter (of Muhammad). All those who instigated you to do what you did and all those who put you in charge due to which you are a playing havoc with the lives of the Muslims will know for certain how evil the end of the oppressors is and which of you shall have the worst place and will be the least protected?

Although calamities have forced me to speak to you, I see you trivial in my eyes and find your verbal attacks great and regard your rebukes too much to bear, but the eyes are tearful, and the chests are filled with depression. What is even stranger is that the honored Party of Allah is being killed by the Party of the “Released Ones” – Party of Satan. Such hands are dripping with our blood; such mouths are feeding on our flesh, while those sacred and pure corpses are offered as food to the wild beasts of the desert and are dirtied by the brutes. If you regard us as your booty, you shall soon find us as your opponents -that will be when you find nothing but what your hands had committed.

“And your Lord never treats His servants unjustly.” (41:46)

To Allah is my complaint, and upon Him do I rely.

So scheme whatever you wish to scheme, and carry out your plots, and intensify your efforts, for, by Allah, you shall never be able to obliterate our mention, nor will you ever be able to kill the revelation (that was revealed to us), nor will you ever exalt our position, nor will your shame ever be washed away. Your view shall be proven futile, your days limited in number, and your wealth wasted on the Day when the caller calls out: “The curse of Allah be upon the oppressors.” (11:18)

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, Who sealed the life of our early ones with happiness and forgiveness, and that of our last ones with martyrdom and mercy. We plead to Allah to complete His rewards for them, grant them an increase, and recompense us pleasingly. He is the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate, Allah suffices us, and He is the best Guardian.”

Extract from a book on Imam Zainul abideen :-

The Captives of the Household taken to Kūfa

The wise ladies of Revelation and the Message were taken prisoners to Kūfa, so the Umayyad army blew its trumpets and raised its banners to show its victory over the plant of the sweet basil of Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, and lord of the youths of the heaven. Muslim al-Jassās described that sight, saying: “Ibn Ziyād summoned me to repair the House of the Governor in Kūfa. While I was plastering the doors, I heard cries coming from everywhere in Kūfa, so I went to the servant of the palace and asked him: “Why is Kūfa noisy?”

“This hour, they will bring the head of a rebel (khārijite) who revolted against Yazid,” answered the servant.

“Who is this rebel?” I asked.   “Al-Husayn b. ‘Ali,” was the answer.

He (Muslim al-Jassās) said: “So I left the servant, struck at my face to the extent that I feared that I would become blind, washed my hands from plaster, left the palace, and went to al-Kanās. While I was with the people waiting for the arrival of the captives and the heads, forty camels came carrying women and children, and ‘Ali b. al-Husayn came riding a camel without saddle. Both sides of his neck were bleeding. He was weeping and repeating these verses:O community of evil, may your region be not watered,

[1] Hayāt al-Imām al-Husayn, vol. 3, pp. 324 - 325.

O community that never respected in our regard our grandfather, on bare camels of burden have you transported us as if we never put up a creed for you ![1]

Jadhlam b. Bashir said: “When I came to Kūfa in the year 61 A. H., ‘Ali b. al-Husayn along with the womenfolk came from Karbalā’ to Kūfa surrounded by soldiers. The were (riding) bare camels. The people came out to look at them, so the women of Kūfa wept and lamented over them. I saw that ‘Ali b. al-Husayn was sapped by illness, chains were placed on his neck and he was handcuffed.[2] He was saying with a weak voice: ‘They are weeping and lamenting over us! So who has killed us?’[3]

Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin delivers a Speech

The Kufāns surrounded Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin, peace be on him, so he thought that he had to address them to make them know the sin of what they committed against themselves and the community. He, peace be on him, lauded and praised Allah, and then he said: “O men, whoever recognizes me knows me, and whoever does not, let me tell him that I am ‘Ali b. al-Husayn b. ‘Ali b. Abi Tālib. I am the son of the man whose sanctity has been violated, whose wealth has been plundered, whose children have been seized. I am the son of the one who has been slaughtered by the Euphrates neither on blood revenge nor on account of inheritance. I am the son of the one killed in the worst manner. This suffices me to be proud.

 “O men, I plead to you in the Name of Allah: Do you not know that you wrote my father then deceived him? Did you not grant him your covenant, your promise, and your allegiance, then you fought him? May you be ruined for what you have committed against your own souls, and out of your corrupt views!

[1]Ibid., p. 333. 
[2] Shaykh al-Mufeed, al-Amāli, p. 143.
[3] 'Abd Allah, Maqqtal al-Husayn.

Through what eyes will youlook at the Messenger of Allah when he says to you: ‘You killed my progeny, violated my sanctity, so you do not belong to my community’?”

Those slaves who blackened the face of history wept loudly and lamented, and they said to each other: “You have perished, yet you are not aware of it.”

The Imām continued his speech, saying: “May Allah have mercy on anyone who acts upon my advice, who safeguards my legacy with regard to Allah, His Apostle, and his Household, for we have in the Apostle of Allah a good example of conduct to emulate.”

So they all said with one tongue: “We, son of the Apostle of Allah, listen and obey, and we shall safeguard your trust. We shall not turn away from you, nor shall we disobey you; so, order us, may Allah have mercy on you, for we shall fight when you fight, and we shall make peace when you do so; we dissociate ourselves from whoever oppressed you and dealt unjustly with you.”

In response to this false obedience, the Imām said: “Far, far away it is from you to do so, people of treachery and conniving! You are separated from what you desire. Do you want to come to me as you did to my father? No, by the Lord of those (angels) that ascend and descend, the wound is yet to heal. My father was killed only yesterday, and so were his Household, and the loss inflicted upon the Apostle of Allah, upon my father, and upon my family is yet to be forgotten. Its pain, by Allah, is between both of these (sides) and its bitterness is between my throat and palate. Its choke is resting in my very chest.[1]” Then the Imām refrained from speech, turning away from those treacherous conniving people who were the mark of disgrace against mankind. It was they who killed the plant of the sweet basil of Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, (I. e., al-Husayn), who came to free them and to save them from the oppression and tyranny of the Umayyads. After that, they repented and wept over him.

[1] Ibn Namā, Muthir al-Ahzān.

The Tyrant with Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin

The captives of the Household of Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, were caused to enter the palace of the Governor of Kūfa, b. Marjāna (i. e., ‘Ubayd Allah b. Ziyād). When the tyrant, b. Marjāna, saw Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin, peace be on him, who was sapped by illness, he asked him: “Who are you?”

“I am ‘Ali b. al-Husayn,” answered the Imām.“Did not Allah kill ‘Ali b. al-Husayn?” Ibn Ziyād asked the Imām.

The Imām carefully replied: “I used to have an older brother also named ‘Ali whom you killed. He will request you on the Day of Judgment.”

Ibn Ziyād burst with anger and shouted at the Imām: “Allah killed him!”The Imām answered him with bravery and steadfastness: “Allah takes the souls away at the time of their death; none dies except with Allah’s permission.”Ibn Marjāna was perplexed, not knowing what to answer this young captive who defeated him through giving proofs and quotations from the Qur’ān, so he shouted at him, saying: “How dare you answer me like that!”

The wicked sinner, b. Marjāna, ordered one of his swordsmen, saying: “Take this lad and behead him!”

The wise lady Zaynab, granddaughter of Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, put her hands around the Imām and bravely said to b. Marjāna: “O Ibn Ziyād, it suffices you what you have shed of our blood! Have you really spared anyone other than this? If you want to kill him, kill me with him as well!”

The tyrant admired her and said to the swordsman with astonishment: “Leave him for her! Amazing is their tie of kinship; she wishes to be killed with him!”

Were it not for this heroic attitude of the wise lady Zaynab, Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin would have been killed and the rest of the progeny of Imām al-Husayn, peace be on him, who was the source of good and honor in the earth, would have been destroyed. In his book ‘al-Rasā’il’, al-Jāhiz reported that b. Marjāna said to his companions concerning ‘Ali b. al-Husayn: “Let me kill him, for he is the rest of this progeny (i. e., the progeny of al-Husayn), so through him I will sever this horn, deaden this disease, and cut off this material.”

However, they advised him to refrain from killing him, for they thought that the Imām would be destroyed by his illness.[1]

The Captives of the Household taken to Damascus

The womenfolk and the children of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and his family, were taken as prisoners to Damascus. They were in a condition the sight of which would cause anyone’s soul to melt. All the Kufāns went out to see the captives of their Prophet off. The men and the women wept for them. Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin, peace be on him, wondered at their attitude and said: “They killed us and are weeping over us![3]

[1] Hayāt al-Imām al-Yusayn, vol. 3, pp. 345 - 347.
[2] Mir'āt al-Zamān fi Tawārikh al-A'yān, p. 98. Ibn al-Jawzi, vol. 5. Ibn Sa'd, Tabaqāt.
[3] Mir'āt al-Zamān fi Tawārikh al-A'yān, p. 99.

The wicked sinner, Shimr b. Dhi al-Jawshan, ordered a rope to be put around Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin’s neck.[1] The historians said: “Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin did not say even a word to the rude people who accompanied him, nor did he ask them for a thing throughout the journey, for he knew that they were wicked and ignoble, and that they would not respond to any of his requests.

The caravan of the captives arrived at a place near Damascus and stopped there because the Umayyads wanted to decorate the city to show their rejoicing and the victory which the grandson of Abi Sufyān gained over the grandson of Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family.

When Damascus was fully decorated, the captives of the Household of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and his family, were caused to enter it.

A Syrian with Zayn al-‘Ābidin

An elderly Syrian, who was misled by the false rumors, came near Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin, peace be on him, and said to him: “Praise belongs to Allah Who annihilated you and Who granted the governor the upper hand over you.”

The Imām looked at the elderly Syrian. He understood that the elderly Syrian misunderstood the truth and was deceived by the false Umayyad mass media, so he asked him: “Shaykh, have you read the Qur’ān?” “Yes,” answered the man.

“Have you read,” continued the Imām, “the verse saying: ‘ Say: I do not ask you for a reward for it except that you treat my kinsfolk with kindness,’ the verse saying: ‘ and give the (Prophet’s) kinsfolk their due rights,’ and the verse saying: ‘and be informed that whatever you earn by way of booty, for Allah belongs the fifth thereof and for the Messenger (of Allah) and for the (Prophet’s) kinsfolk’? ”

[1] Ansāb al-Ashrāf, Q1/vol. 1.

The elderly Syrian admired the Imām and said to him with a faint voice: “Yes, I have read all of them.”

The Imām said to him: “We, by Allah, are the kinsfolk referred to in all these verses.” Then the Imām asked him: “Shaykh, have you read these words of Him, the exalted: ‘Allah only desires to take away uncleanness from you, O Household (of the Prophet) and purify thoroughly’? ” “Yes,” was the answer.

“We are the Household (of the Prophet) whom Allah singled out with the Verse of Purification.”

The elderly Syrian shook all over. He wished that the earth had swallowed him up before saying his words. Then he asked the Imām: “I ask you in the Name of Allah, are you really them?”

“By our grandfather, Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, we are, without any doubt,” replied the Imām.

It was then that the elderly Syrian fell on Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin’s hands kissing them. His tears flowed down his cheeks, and he said: “I dissociate myself before Allah from those who killed you!”

The elderly Syrian sought repentance from the Imām from whatever rude remarks he had made earlier. So he, peace be on him, forgave him.[1]

[1] Hayāt al-Imām al-Husayn, vol. 3, p. 371.

Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin in the Assembly of Yazid

The police men of Yazid tied with ropes the wise women of Revelation and the children of Imām al-Husayn, as sheep are tied. The beginning of the rope was around the neck of Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin, then around the neck of his aunt Zaynab, up to all the daughters of Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family. Whenever they relaxed in their walking, they (the police men of Yazid) whipped them. They brought them in this condition whose terror cracked the mountains and made them stop before Yazid. So Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin turned to him and asked him: “What do you think the reaction of our grandfather, Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, might have been had he seen us looking like this?” The tyrant, Yazid, collapsed. All those who were in his assembly wept. Yazid felt pain of that tragic sight, so he said: “May Allah detest b. Marjāna the ugly. If there had been (any bond of) kinship between him and you, he would not have done this to you; he would not have sent you in this state.” Then the tyrannical one, Yazid, ordered the ropes to be cut off, turned to Zayn al-‘Ābidin and said him: “How did you, ‘Ali, see what Allah did to your father al-Husayn?”

Al-Husayn’s brave son (Zayn al-‘Ābidin) answered with calmness and tranquillity: “Whatever misfortune befalls the earth or your own selves is already in a Book even before we cause it to happen; this is easy for Allah, so that you may not grieve about what you missed nor feel elated on account of what you receive. And Allah does not love those who are haughty and proud.”

The tyrant, Yazid, burst in anger, his elation went away, and recited these words of Him, the Exalted: “Whatever misfortune befalls you is due to what your hands commit.” The Imām answered him, saying: “This (verse) concerns those who do wrong, not those who are wronged.” Then he turned his face away from him to disdain him and his position.[1]

Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin delivers a Sermon

 Yazid permitted all the people to come to his palace, so the hall of his palace became full of people who came and congratulated him on the false victory. He was pleased and happy, because the world yielded to him, and the kingdom belonged to him only. So he ordered the orator to ascend the pulpit and to defame al-Husayn and his father, Imām ‘Ali, the Commander of the faithful, peace be on him. [1] Ibid., p. 376.

The orator ascended the pulpit and went too far in slandering the pure family (of the Prophet), and then he lauded in a false way Yazid and his father Mu‘āwiya. Thus, Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin, peace be on him, interrupted him, saying: “Woe unto you, orator! You have traded the pleasure of the creature for the wrath of the Creator, so take your place in the fire (of Hell).”

Then the Imām turned to Yazid and asked him, saying: “Do you permit me to ascend this pulpit to deliver a speech that will please Allah, the Almighty, and that will bring good rewards for these folks?”

The attendants were astonished at this sick lad, who interrupted the orator and the governor while he was a captive. Yazid refused, but the people begged him. He said to them: “If he ascends the pulpit, he will not descends (from it) till he expose me and the family of Abi Sufyān.”

The people asked him: “What will this sick lad do?”

The people did not know the Imām. They thought that he was like the other people, but the tyrant, Yazid, knew him, so he said to them: “These are people who have been spoon-fed with knowledge.”

They kept pressuring him till he agreed. So the Imām ascended the pulpit and delivered the most wonderful speech in history in eloquence. He made the people weep. The folks were confused because the Imām’s speech controlled their hearts and feelings.

The following is some of what he said:

“O people, we were granted six things and favored with seven: We were granted knowledge, clemency, leniency, fluency, courage, and love for us in the hearts of the believers. We were favored by the fact that from among us came the chosen Prophet, Mohammed, may Allah bless him and his family, al-siddiq (the very truthful one), al-Tayyār (the one who flies in the heaven), the Lion of Allah and of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and his family, the mistress of the women of the world Fātima the chaste, and both lords of the youths of Heaven from among this nation”

Having introduced his family, the Imām continued his speech explaining their outstanding merits, saying:

 “Whoever recognizes me knows me, and whoever does not recognize, let me tell him who I am and to what family I belong: I am the son of Mecca and Mina; I am the son of Zamzam and al-Safā; I am the son of the one who carried Zakāt in the ends of the mantle; I am the son of the best man who ever put on a loincloth and clothes; I am the son of the best man who ever put on sandals and walked barefooted; I am the son of the best man who ever made tawāf (the procession round the Kaaba) and Sa‘i (ceremony of running seven times between Safā and Marwā); I am the son of the best man who ever offered the hajj and pronounced talbiya (Here I am at your service); I am the son of the one who was transported on the burāq in the air; I am the son of the one who was made to travel from the Sacred Mosque to the Remote Mosque, so glory belongs to Him Who made (His Servant) travel; I am the son of the one who was taken by Gabriel to sidrat al-muntahā ; I am the son of the one who drew near (his Lord) and suspended, so he was the measure of two bows or closer still; I am the son of the one who led the angels of the heavens in prayer; I am the son of the one to whom the Almighty revealed what He revealed; I am the son of Mohammed al-Mustafā ; I am the son of ‘Ali al-Murtadā ; I am the son of the one who fought against the creatures till they said: There is no god but Allah. I am the son of the one who struck (the enemies) with two swords before Allah’s Apostle, may Allah bless him and his family, and stabbed (them) with two spears, emigrated twice, pledged allegiance twice (to the Prophet), prayed in the two qiblas, and fought (against the unbelievers) at Badr and Hunayn and never disbelieved in Allah not even as much as the twinkling of an eye. I am the son of the best of the believers, the heir of the prophets, the destroyer of the unbelievers, the Commander of the Muslims, the light of the mujāhidin, the ornament of the worshippers, the crown of the weepers, the most patient of the patient, and the best of the steadfast from among the family of Yāsin, and the Messenger of the Lord of the world’s inhabitants. I am the son of the one who was backed by Gabriel, supported by Mikāel. I am the son of the one who defended the Muslims, killed the oath breakers of allegiance and the unjust and the renegades, struggled against his tiring enemies, the most excellent one of those who walked (to war) from among Quraysh, the first to respond to Allah from among the believers, the prior to all the previous ones, the breaker of the aggressors, the destroyer of the atheists, an arrow from among the shooting-places of Allah against the hypocrites, the tongue of the wisdom of worshippers, the supporter of the religion of Allah, the protector of the affair of Allah, the garden of the wisdom of Allah, the container of the knowledge of Allah, tolerant, generous, benevolent, pure, Abtahi, satisfied, easily satisfied, intrepid, gallant, patient, fasting, refined, steadfast, courageous, honored, the severer of the backbones, the scatterer of the allies, the calmest of them, the best of them in giving free rein (to his horse), the boldest of them in tongue, the firmest of them in determination, the most powerful of them, a lion, brave, pouring rain, the one who destroyed them at the battles and dispersed them in the wind, the lion of al-Hijāz, the possessor of the miracle, the ram of Iraq, the Imām through the text and worthiness, Makki, Madani, Abtahi, Tuhāmi, Khay‘ani, ‘Uqbi, Badri, Uhdi, Shajari, Muhājiri, the Lord of the Arabs, the Lion of war, the inheritor of al-Mash‘arayn, the father of the two grandsons (of the Prophet) al-Hasan and al-Husayn, the one who manifested miracles, the one who scattered the phalanxes, the piercing meteor, the following light, the victorious Lion of Allah, the request of every seeker, the victorious over every victorious, such is my grandfather, ‘Ali b. Abi Tālib. I am the son of Fātima, the chaste. I am the son of the mistress of women. I am the son of the purified, virgin (lady). I am the son of the part of the Messenger, may Allah bless him and his family.[1] I am the son of the one who was covered with blood. I am the son of the one who was slaughtered at Karbalā’. I am the son of the one for whom the Jinns wept in the dark and for whom the birds in the air cried.[2]

[1] Ibid., p. 387.
[2] Nafs al-Mahmūm, p. 242.

The Imām continued saying ‘I am....’ until the people wailed.Yazid thought that a discord would occur, for the Imām made a cultural revolt through his speech when he introduced himself to the Syrians and made them know what they did not know, so Yazid ordered the muadhdhin to say the adhān and he said: “Allāhu Akbar!”

The Imām turned to him and said: “You have made great the Great One who cannot be measured and cannot be perceived by senses, there is nothing greater than Allah.”

The muadhdhin said: “Ashhadu an la ilaha illa Allāh!”

‘Ali b. al-Husayn said: “My hair, my skin, my flesh, my blood, my brain, and my bones bear witness that there is no god but Allah.”

The muadhdhin said: “Ashhadu anna Mohammedan rasool Allah!”

The Imām turned to Yazid and asked him: “Yazid, is Mohammed your grandfather or mine? If you say that he is yours, then you are a liar, and if you say that he is mine, then why did you kill his family?[1]

Yazid became silent and was unable to answer, for the great Prophet was Imām Zayn al-‘Ābidin’s grandfather. As for Yazid’s grandfather, he was Abū Sufyān, who was the mortal enemy of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and his family. The Syrians understood that they were drowning in sin, and that the Umayyad government spared no effort to delude and mislead them.

The Imām confined his speech to introducing the Prophet’s Household to the Syrians. He indicated to them that the Prophet’s Household had a great position with Allah, that they waged jihad against the enemies of Islam, and that they suffered persecutions. The Imām mentioned nothing other than these matters. I (the author) think that this confinement to these matters is among the most wonderful considerations and among the most exact type of eloquence. This is because the Syrians knew nothing about the Prophet’s Household except what the pseudo clergy men fabricated against them; the authority and its mercenaries fed the Syrians on enmity toward the Prophet’s Household and on obedience to the Umayyads.

Anyhow, the Imām’s speech had a great effect on the Syrians, who secretly told each other about the Umayyad false mass media, and about the disappointment and loss at which they reached, so their attitudes toward Yazid changed[1] and they looked at him with disdain.

[1] Al-Khawārizmi, Maqqtal al-Husayn, vol. 2, p. 242.

Alternate Translation of Imam Sajjads speech

Sermon of Imam Sajjad (a.s.) in the court of Yazid

After praise and glorification of the Almighty, the Imam said:“O people! We were given six virtues and exalted with seven excellences: Knowledge, forbearance, generosity, eloquence, valor and love in the hearts of believers and we were given superiority by the fact that the Chosen Prophet, Muhammad is from us. And the truthful one is from us. And the winged one is from us. And from us is the lion of God and the lion of the Prophet. And from us is the chief of the ladies of the world, Fatima, the pure one. And from us are the two best grandsons of this nation and the two chiefs of youths of Paradise.

Those who know me, know me. Those who don’t shall be informed of my family and lineage. I am the son of Mecca and Mina. I am son of Zamzam and Safa. I am offspring of one who carried Zakat in a corner of his cloak. I am the child of the best of those who donned the cloak and mantle. I am son of the best of those who sometimes put on shoes and sometimes walked barefoot. I am the offspring of the best of those who performed circumambulation of Kaaba or did Sayy. I am son of the best of those who went for Hajj and recited ‘Labbaik’.


I am child of one who was carried in space on back of Burraq. I am  child of one who during the night was carried from Masjidul Haraam to Masjidul Aqsa. Thus Pure is the One Who took him during the night. I am the offspring of one who Jibraeel took upto the Farthest Lote Tree (Sidratul Muntaha). I am the child of one who was at a distance of two bows or lesser. I am the son of the person who led the angels of the sky in prayers. I am the child of one to whom Allah revealed what He revealed. I am son of Muhammad Mustafa.


I am son of Ali Murtaza. I am son who hit the nose of creatures so that they may say: There is no god except Allah. I am son of the man who did Jihad in service of Prophet with two swords, striked with two spears,undertook two migrations, pledged two oaths of allegiance,recited prayer facing two prayer directions (Qibla), fought in battles of Badr and Hunain and did not deny Allah for the fraction of a second. I am son of righteous believers, the inheritor of prophets, the destroyer of apostates, leader of Muslims, effulgence of religious warriors, ornament of worshippers, crown of those who weep, the most patient ofpatient ones, the best of those who established prayers, from the family of Yasin and the Messenger of the Lord of the worlds. I am the offspring of whom Jibraeel supported and Mikaeel helped. I am the child of the defender of the honor of Muslims and the slayer of Nakiseen, Qasiteen and Mariqeen.1

And the one who performed Jihad against the malicious enemies, the most dignified of those who walked among the Quraish and the first believer who responded to the call ofAllah, the senior most of the preceders, punisher of criminals and liquidator of polytheists and an arrow of God on the hypocrites. The tongue of wisdom of worshippers, the helper ofreligion of Allah and master of affair of God, the guardian of divine wisdom, and treasure of knowledge of God was bestowed to him. Generous, elegant and pure, by whom the people of valleys of Mecca were pleased and delighted.

The bold warrior, the patient keeper of fast, the sincere worshipper of the night, the valiant one, cutter of the waists,disperser of the groups, who was the most powerful of heart and most victorious than them. With a tongue more daring,most determined of all, possessing the most powerful 1 Those who fought Ali (a.s.) in the battles of Jamal, Siffeen and Nahrawan respectively. determination, a brave lion and furious attacker. In the battleshe used to hit upon them and dispersed and destroyed them like goats and sheep. Lion of Hijaz, possessor of miracle, leader of Iraq. Appointed Imam by right and religious texts, native of Mecca and Medina, a native of Bataha and Tahama, one of Kheef and Aqabah, one of Badr and Uhad, who was present in the pledge of the tree, a migrant among the Arabs, their master, lion-like in battles, heir of two signs, father of two grandsons, Hasan and Husain, displayer of miracles and disperser of armies. A shining star, effulgence personified. The victorious lion of God, aim of every wish-seeker, dominant on every victor, he is that same one who is our grandfather, Ali bin Abi Talib.


I am son of Fatima Zahra. I am son of the leader of women. I am son of that pure and chaste lady. I am son of the beloved one of the Prophet (s.a.w.s.).1

After that he mentioned the calamities of Kerbala and chaos erupted in the court as he had delivered a complete speech in the court of tyrant consisting of Fazail and Masaib, which remained incomplete because Yazid ordered the Muezzin to begin the Azaan because he realized that it is easier to deny excellence, but not possible to hinder the sorrow of calamities.

In the above sermon, the point to be noted is that the Imam in the beginning mentioned all Islamic signs and stated his inheritance and after that declared that he was successor of Prophet and then mentioned the excellence of his elders to see which of them the tyrant challenges. But the history of Kerbalais a witness that Yazid could not challenge any part of sermon.

On the contrary he had the Azaan started, which was declaration of manifest victory of Imam; that one who termed prophethood to be a drama enacted by Bani Hashim was ordering recital of “I witness that Muhammad is Messenger of 1 Khwarizmi, Maqtal 2/69-70

Allah,” and the Imam declared his rights at that point and laid foundation of mention of Imamate along with prophethood; the practice which continues to this day and even after destruction of royal courts, foundations of victimization are still stable.1