Reason #88: Abandoning Imam Husain SA
Husain Qutbuddin very dramatically poses the question: ‘how could anyone say that the Ahle Bait must have felt that they were neecha, lowly and contemptible?’ He considers anyone expressing the same to have insulted the memory of Ahle Bait and tarnished their lofty standing.
If he is true, then Dawat texts demonstrate that Ahle Bait SA themselves, in their own words, have tarnished their own standing, and Hudaat Kiraam SA have continued this discourse throughout history. This of course would never be possible and this post will provide evidence why Husain Qutbuddin’s claim is incorrect.
Passages composed in the remembrance and zikr of Imam Husain RA taken from Syedna al-Mu’ayyad al-Shirazi’s RA majaalis mu’ayyadiyyah are an integral element of the Asharah Mubarakah majaalis. Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA regularly recited them in his wa’z and the imagery provided and depictions portrayed have formed the basis of centuries of gham and zikr done by the Doat Mutlaqeen RA. In one such bayaan, Syedna al-Mu’ayyad RA describes the condition of the daughters of Moulatona Fatema SA in Karbala:
If only Fatema would look at the Fatemiyaat (the daughters of Fatema)! For they are surrounded by enemies. Among them, one shouts in grief, O brother! One exclaims, O father! One yells, O grandfather! One cries, O Sorrow! Their garbs are torn! They are anguished by the loss of their beloveds! Their hair has been unfurled; they’ve been forced to abandon the privacy of their quarters.
Syedna Mu’ayyad RA has great stature among the luminaries of Fatimi literature. The use of ‘ya layta’, ‘if only’ here is exceptional. Of course Moulatona Fatema SA is looking at her daughters, but Syedna Mu’ayyad’s RA use of this literary device indicates the emotion that overcomes a Mumin in the zikr of Imam Husain SA and when narrating the tragedy of Karbala. This description of Moulatona Fatema’s SA daughters has been eternalized in Mumineen’s memory, further intensified by the use of these terms and this imagery in Syedna Taher Saifuddin’s RA marthiyah mubarakah, ‘Ya Syed al-Shohoda’ii’. He describes their persecution and the way they are made to walk with the following phrase, ‘yosaqna sawq al-imaai’: ‘made to walk in the manner of slave-girls’.
When Rasulullah SA passed away, Moulatona Fatema SA was mistreated, her hurmat disregarded like that of her daughters’ in Karbala. She was tormented and persecuted to the extent that after dushmano had forcefully taken Amirul Mumineen SA away to coerce his allegiance, she came to the qabr mubarak of Rasulullah SA and, as narrated by Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA himself, said the following with tears flowing from her eyes:
O father! O, my estrangement and loneliness after you! O, my loss; O, my zillat (lowliness and contemptibleness); O, the defilement of my sanctity!
Syedna Burhanuddin’s RA words are similar to an Arabic version in Agharr al-Majaalis: the compilation of bayaans prepared by Syedna Taher Saifuddin RA for wa´z during Asharah Mubarakah. Moulatona Fatema SA attributes to her own self the word zillat, meaning lowliness or baseness. She states that after the loss of Rasulullah SA and the subsequent persecution at the hands of dushmano, she has been dishonoured and humiliated. If Fatema felt this way, would not Fatemiyaat, her daughters who were treated like slaves in Karbala, their veils snatched, their heads uncovered, their men slain, feel similar? Would not her children, upon whom water that was permitted to all people and animals was forbidden, feel the way she did after the zulm carried out upon her and her family?
The Arabic word zillat comes from zalla, to become base or low, i.e. to become neecha
Moulatona Fatema SA described the intensity of her lowliness with the Arabic figure of speech ‘ya’ used for exclamatory intention. She would only say what she felt. If she felt this way, and moreover declared she felt this way, why should her children, facing similar or greater persecution, not feel the same? How can anyone be criticised for attributing a sentiment experienced by Fatema when persecuted, to her daughters and granddaughters who Syedna Mu’ayyad RA has referred to as Fatemiyaat? The parallels between Moulatona Fatema SA and the Ahle Bait SA are clear and the words of Moulatona Fatema SA, Syedna Mu’ayyad RA and Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA illustrate this.
Examples from Fatemi literature further clarify the attribution of zillat to Haqq na sahebo. Syedi Abdeali Mohyiddin QR is renowned for his zikr of Imam Husain SA. In one marthiyah, he states:
O the lowliness of his (Husain Imam’s SA) children, those among them whom have been made prisoners are led by Husain’s son, Ali, the imprisoned.
In another, he articulates:
[The tragedy of Ahle Bait] has set ablaze the innards of taqwaa and has debased its people. This tragedy has disgraced the Quran itself.]
Elsewhere in his poetry he describes the tragedy of Karbala as having disfigured the nose of Islam. The nose is considered an embodiment of respect and honour; references to the nose being disfigured in Arabic literature mean that one’s honour has been taken away from them. These examples clearly illustrate the manner by which Hudaat Kiraam RA have described the zillat, disgrace and baseness attributed to the Ahle Bait SA with respect to the great tragedy and museebat of Karbala. According to Husain Qutbuddin, such statements are sacrilegious, so why have they been made?
Husain Qutbuddin goes on and on about nehj, or tradition. He very pompously claims to know exactly what Syedna Burhanuddin has and has not done. In fact, he insinuates he knows what all the Doat have done, yet he could not see the undeniable interconnection and association between Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin’s TUS bayaan mubarak and the kalemaat nooraniyah of none other than Moulatona Fatemah SA and the other Hudaat Kiram SA mentioned above, including Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA.
In their desperation to level accusations of inappropriateness against the haqq na saheb, HQ and Khuzaima have now proceeded to make a mockery of a fundamental element of the Dawoodi Bohra faith: the zikr and remembrance of Imam Husain SA. Their abandonment of the haqq na saheb has resulted in their inability to recognize haqq itself. To speak of elements of Husain Imam’s SA gham in this manner: with scorn, scoff and sarcasm, is the gravest of sins. He says the Ahle Bait SA cannot be referred to or described as they were, but this description is common all throughout the history of our community, beginning with Moulatona Fatema SA herself. By abandoning Syedna Burhanuddin RA and disregarding his words, Allah Ta´ala has taken from them the greatest blessing of all: the understanding and awran of the zikr and matam of Imam Husain SA.