Muharram 2018: All you need to know about the day of Ashura

Elias Hubbard
September 22, 2018

Paying rich tributes to Hazrat Imam-e-Hussain (RA) and his companions at Karballah 1400 years ago, chairman Hurriyat (G) Conference, Syed Ali Geelani said that this was not just a battle between two forces, but it was a fight between two ideologies.

As the Islamic calendar is based on lunar cycles, the dates which months begin can differ against the Gregorian calendar from year to year. This day marks the period of mourning for the community in the first month of the Islamic calendar.

On the day of Muharram, Shias across India mourned the loss of Imam Hussain, the grandson of Prophet Mohammad.

Although there are many joyful Islamic holidays, the nature of Ashura is more solemn. Imam Hussain Ali was killed during the battle of Karbala (in present day Iraq), by the soldiers of the Caliph Yazid in 680 AD.

Mourners from Iran and some other countries generally clad in black, and took to the streets or gathered in mosques to commemorate the day. They captured Hussain and his group and deprived them of water and food in the desert heat for three successive days.

We "vehemently discountenance some alarmist message that have gone viral on the social media insinuating that the Shi'a annual religious mourning procession, popularly known as Ashura will be violent in Abuja and other cities across the nation, with some saying people should stay indoors to avoid eminent clash with the mourners". Traditionally, some of them even break the fast only after zawal (afternoon), when they pay respect to Imam Hussein by beating themselves with chains in public, cutting themselves with knives and sharp objects and holding mournful public processions.

People express their grief by self-flagellation rituals and processions with chants of "Ya Hussain". Sunni Muslims mark the day by voluntary fasting as a tradition followed by Prophet Muhammad.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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