Monday, December 5, 2011

Reflections on 'Ashura Day


It's the time of the year when we talk about 'Ashura day. Most people already know the virtues of the day and most people would be fasting on this day InshAllah. May Allah continue to give us the tawfik to observe all the days deemed auspicious by sunnah.

Personally, I wish our scholars would elaborate more on the reason behind 'Ashura celebration, particularly on the victory granted to Prophet Musa a.s. and his people. Their illustrious victory over Fir'aun should offer plenty of lessons for us as we encounter the modern day "Fir'auns" quite frequently. Dealing with the Fir'auns of our times can be suffocating. They tend to complicate things and make our chest tight. Their ability to articulate their viewpoints eloquently (although in error), make us feel inhibited. And we are often tongue-tied and lost for words when trying to counter these smart Fir'auns. But as believers we do not intend to argue unnecessarily or win an argument for the sake of winning an argument. We just want people to understand our stand. So Prophet Musa said: “O God open my chest, make my task easy for me and untie the knot in my tongue so that they may understand me.”

Well if they still don't understand us and when it's beyond us, we'll have to leave it to the powers that be. In any case, I think we have to be braver in our beliefs, that we have got a divine power behind us, one that is always going to back us up even when we think that no help is coming our way, and suddenly we look behind us, lo and behold, He drowns the enemies!

On a lighter note, on this 'Ashura occasion, I wish to be living in Tarim, Yemen where the spirits of 'Ashura could be felt in a deeper sense. I learned from Habib Umar's notes on 'Ashura that people would "gather in Masjid Ba`Alawi on the eve of `Ashura to read the merits of the day and to make du`a. The day itself is a day of Eid. Children wear their best clothes, amusements are provided for them and gifts are given to them."

It would be nice if we could show the children a clip on Prophet Musa's triumph. Imagine a scene where tonnes of water sinking the enemies; picture the Red Sea at the peak of its might and  the good feeling that believers always win!

Reference: Shaykh Abdul Karim Yahya's blog
Poster credit: Hamid Iqbal Khan
To purchase his art:

No comments:

Post a Comment