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THE DAY OF AASHURA

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THE DAY OF AASHURA

The 10th Muharram is the Day of Aashura which is an auspicious day for Muslims. When Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) came to Madinah Munawwarah, he observed that the Yahood were fasting on the 10th Muharram.  On making enquiries, he was informed that the 10th Muharram was the day on which Allah Ta’ala freed Bani Israaeel from the brutal captivity of Fir’oun, and Hadhrat Nabi Musaa (Alahyhis salaam) had fasted as a mark of Shukr (Gratitude). 

Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) then commented that “We are closer to Musaa than the Yahood”, hence he ordered Muslims to fast on 10th Muharram. However, in order to differentiate between Muslims and the Yahood, Muslims have been ordered to fast on two days, either on 9th and 10th, or 10th and 11th. 

Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said that the one who fasts on this occasion, all his sins of the past year are forgiven.

 

People have introduced a new practice of exchanging gifts on this day. This is a new bid’ah innovated by those given to stupid frivolity. On this day Sadqah to the poor should be given. The virtue and reward of Sadqah to the poor on this day are great. The following episode illustrates the virtue of Sadqah on the 10th Muharram.

 

A Faqeer came to a Qaadhi on the Day of Aashura and pleaded: “May Allah honour the Qaadhi. I am a Faqeer with a large family I have come to you to ask  by the virtue of this great Day to give me bread , meat and two dirhams (silver coins) so that I may feed my family lavishly on this Day. Allah will reward you.”

The Qaadhi promised to fulfil his request at the time of Zuhr. When Zuhr came, the Qaadhi told the Faqeer to come at Asr. When it was Asr, the Qaadhi told him to come at Maghrib. When the Faqeer arrived at Maghrib, the Qaadhi said that he had nothing to offer. The Faqeer was profoundly grieved and left shedding tears.

Along the way he passed by a Nasraani (Christian) who was sitting at the doorway of his house. Seeing the Faqeer crying, the Nasraani asked; “Why are you crying?” The Faqeer said: “Don’t bother to ask me.” The Nasraani said: “I ask you in the Name of Allah. Inform me of your predicament.” The Faqeer explained the episode with the Qaadhi.

The Nasraani said: “What is the status of this Day by your people (i.e. Muslims)?” The Faqeer said: “It is the Day of Aashura.” He narrated some of the virtues and blessings of Aashura. The Nasraani was so impressed that he gave the Faqeer more than what he had requested from the Qaadhi. Instead of the two dirhams he had requested, the Nasraani gave him 20 dirhams. Then the Nasraani said: “Take this for your family, and every month come and take this amount from me for the sake of this great Day. May Allah honour this Day.”

The Faqeer’s poverty-stricken family was overwhelmed with joy, and in a loud voice they supplicated: “O Allah! Grant happiness swiftly to the one who has made us happy.” That night whilst the Qaadhi was sleeping he heard in a dream a Voice: “Lift your head and look!” When the Qaadhi obeyed, he saw two palaces of indescribable beauty. The bricks were of gold and silver. He said: “O my Allah! Whose palaces are these?” The Voice said: “If you had fulfilled the request of the Faqeer, these would have been your palaces. Since you had buffeted him, the palaces now belong to the Nasraani (the Nasraani was identified in the dream).”

The Qaadhi woke up in a state of grief, fear and shock, crying – Alas! Alas! Then he hastened to the Nasraani. He said to the Nasraani: “What good deed did you do yesterday?” The Nasraani said: “Why do you ask?” The Qaadhi informed him of his dream. The Qaadhi said: “Sell me the good deed you had done to the Faqeer for a hundred thousand dirhams.”

The Nasraani said: “I shall not sell it for the world full of gold. Furthermore, O Qaadhi! I make you witness that I am declaring: ‘Ashadu al-laa ilaaha ill al laah wa ash-hadu-anna Muhammadan Abduhu wa Rasuluhu.’ (I testify that there is no deity but Allah, and I testify that verily, Muhammad is His slave and His Messenger.).”

8 Muharram 1438 – 10 October 2016

 

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