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Why Sunnis Do Not Comemmorate Ashura (Matam-3)

Shia says
“ Why do the Sunnis not comemmorate the death of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه), the Prophet’s grandson?
There is no doubt in the minds of the rightly guided Ahlus Sunnah in regards to the great qualities of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه). We ask Allah Almighty to accept him into the Highest Ranks of Paradise with the Prophets and Messengers of Allah. Anyone who denies the greatness of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) is deviant, and has gone away from the accepted creed of the Ahlus Sunnah. There is not a single reputable scholar of the Ahlus Sunnah that has ever said otherwise.
Having said this, true Muslims must not take part in the Shia rituals on the day of Ashura. Although we recognize that the death of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) was a tragic event, it is a Bidah (evil innovation to Islam) to commemorate his death because the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) did not do so. How could the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) comemmorate his death when the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) himself died many years before the death of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه)?
Additionally–and this point cannot be stressed enough–there were many Sahabah who were killed in the Path of Allah, but the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) never mourned their deaths in the manner in which the Shia mourn Hussain (رضّى الله عنه). The Prophet lost his own dear uncle, his own wife, and many of his dearest companions, but do we see that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) ever resorted to self-flagellation or excessive mourning? The Shia can never provide such an example from the life of the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم), probably not even from Shia sources. Therefore, we find that it is not part of the Sunnah to mourn in such an uncivilized manner and we shall never take part in it because of this.

“Neither the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) nor his rightly-guided successors (the khulafa’ al-raashidoon) did any of these things on the day of ‘Aashooraa’, they neither made it a day of mourning nor a day of celebration.
all of this is reprehensible bid’ah and is wrong. None of it has anything to do with the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) or the way of the Khulafa’ al-Raashidoon. It was not approved of by any of the imaams of the Muslims, not Maalik, not al-Thawri, not al-Layth ibn Sa’d, not Abu Haneefah, not al-Oozaa’i, not al-Shaafa’i, not Ahmad ibn Hanbal, not Ishaaq ibn Raahwayh, not any of the imaams and scholars of the Muslims.
The religion of Islam is based on two principles: that we should worship nothing besides Allaah Alone, and that we should worship Him in the manner that He has prescribed, not by means of bid’ah or reprehensible innovations.
There have been many other great heroes of Islam who have been killed in the Path of Allah, and we do not find the Ahlus Sunnah comemmorating any of these days. The Ahlus Sunnah does not comemmorate the martyrdom of Umar (رضّى الله عنه), Uthman (رضّى الله عنه), or Ali (رضّى الله عنه). The reason is that we find all this to be Bidah, and forms of exaggeration like the Christians who comemmorate the death of Isa (عليه السلام).

We find it interesting that the Shia do not celebrate the death of Ali (رضّى الله عنه) or any of their other heroes. Ali (رضّى الله عنه) was stabbed to death, and he suffered a horrendous death. So what is the reason that the Shia make such a big deal about the death of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) but not of Ali (رضّى الله عنه)? Ali (رضّى الله عنه) is in fact considered superior to Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) by the Shia. So why the death of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) and not of Ali (رضّى الله عنه)? The reason is obvious: the Shia celebrate Ashura to spite the Sunni Muslims.

The Shia attest that it was Yezid who killed Hussain (رضّى الله عنه), and they say that Yezid was a Sunni. This is the reason that they mourn Hussain (رضّى الله عنه), because they blame the Ahlus Sunnah for this tragic event. 
[The truth of the matter, as we shall see in future articles, is that the death of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) was the fault of the Shia of Kufa. ]

The Shia mourning on Ashura is therefore a spiteful fist in the air against the Sunni majority. The Shia leave no stone unturned in their defamation of the Ahlus Sunnah, and thus they want everyone to remember that it was “Yezid the big bad Sunni” who was responsible.

As can be seen, the Shia mourning on Ashura has little do with their love for Hussain (رضّى الله عنه), but rather has more to do with their hatred of the Sunnis. Why else do they not comemmorate the martyrdoms of their other heroes, such as Ali (رضّى الله عنه) or Hamza (رضّى الله عنه)? The truth is that Ali (رضّى الله عنه) was killed by the Khawarij, a group of the Shia! This is why the Shia today do not make a big fuss about the death of Ali (رضّى الله عنه) since it was a man from their own party who killed him. It is much better instead to make great fan-fare about Hussain’s death (رضّى الله عنه), since the Shia blame the Sunnis for this death.

Sometimes the Shia of today will encourage the Sunnis to comemmorate Ashura, using and exploiting the fact that the Ahlus Sunnah also loves Hussain (رضّى الله عنه). We strongly urge our Muslim brothers not to fall into this trap of the Shia! They want us to take part in rituals that were designed to defame the Ahlus Sunnah, and nothing more. We cannot accept the Shia way of life.
Additionally, comemmorating Ashura with any special ritual would be adding to the faith of Islam, and this is Bidah. Bidah is considered part of Hell-Fire, and whoever invents a Bidah is promised Hell-Fire as well.

“[It is a] delusion that such innovation [commemorating Ashura] is a pious deed…Nor has such commemoration been Sunni practice at all - even for the death of the Holy Prophet, whose passing from this world is a much greater loss - whether on Ashura or any other time of the year…
As for love of Ahl al-Bayt it is an integral of Sunni belief but in a Sunni way, not a sectarian way chock-full with ill feelings fanned by fabrications. Ibn Kathir said in al-Bidaya wal-Nihaya (8:201-202):
Al-Tabarani mentioned in this chapter very strange reports indeed and the Shi`a went overboard concerning the day of Ashura, forging many hadiths that are gross lies such as the sun being eclipsed on that day until the stars appeared, no stone was lifted except blood was seen under it, the celestial region became red, the sun and its rays seemed like blood, the sky seemed like a blood clot, the stars were hurling against one another, the sky rained red blood, there was never redness in the sky before that day, and the like… among other lies and forgeries of which not one report is sound.”
Success is from Allah, may He keep us on the path of His Prophet and his Companions, away from sectarianism and bad adab posing as love of Ahl al-Bayt.
From a logical standpoint too, we wonder if the Shia expect us to comemmorate the death of all the great heroes in Islam? If this were the case, then there would not be a single day left in the year in which the Muslims could be happy! Surely, in the great long history of Islam, there has been a martyrdom on every day of the year.

And even if we began the practise of comemmorating the deaths of martyrs, then there would be a long list of people whose death we would begin to comemmorate. On this list, Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) would not be the first, and there would be many before him. For example, we would comemmorate the wrongful deaths of Umar (رضّى الله عنه), Uthman (رضّى الله عنه), and Ali (رضّى الله عنه). Let us also not forget to give precedence to the deaths of past Prophets and Mesengers. So the Shia cannot accuse us of not loving the Prophet’s grandson; this is a childish accusation, and we refute it by asking the Shia why they do not mourn the other 364 days of the year in which other great heroes died.

And what about Prophet Isa (عليه السلام)? Should we also celebrate Christmas and Easter like the Christians do to celebrate the birth and death of Isa (عليه السلام)? Would it not be a great Bidah to take part in these Christian comemmorations?
Can the Shia provide even one difference between these Christian holidays and the Shia holidays? Why do the Shia find it permissible to celebrate the Prophet Muhammad’s birthday (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) and comemmorate Hussain’s death (رضّى الله عنه), but then they would look down on a Shia who took part in Christmas and Easter? If the Shia say that the Sunnis do not love the Prophet’s grandson because they do not comemmorate Ashura, based on this logic can’t we also infer that the Shia do not love Prophet Isa (عليه السلام) since they fail to comemmorate his birth and death? Surely this is faulty logic.

In regards to the actual rituals of the Shia, these are barbaric practises of self-flagellation, violence, and paganism. How can the Shia actually ask us to partake in such displays? We shall do no such thing and rather we shall distance ourselves from them. Instead, we shall continue to call our Shia brothers to the path of true Islam of the Ahlus Sunnah, as followed by Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) himself.

We will not exploit the death of the Prophet’s grandson for sectarian agenda, as the Shia have done. And the truth of the matter, as we shall see in future articles, is that the death of Hussain (رضّى الله عنه) was the fault of the Shia of Kufa.

If the Shia want us to remember tales of Yezid’s debauchery, then let us also remind them of the Shia of Kufa whose cowardice, back-stabbing, and deceit led to the demise of the Prophet’s grandson.

Un Islamic Practices are Forbidden 

What the Shi’ah do on ‘Ashoora’ of beating their chests, slapping their cheeks, striking their shoulders with chains and cutting their heads with swords to let the blood flow are all innovations that have no basis in Islam. These things are evils that were forbidden by the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), who did not prescribe for his ummah to do any of these things or anything similar to them to mark the death of a leader or the loss of a martyr, no matter what his status. During his lifetime (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) a number of senior Sahaabah were martyred and he mourned their loss, such as Hamzah ibn ‘Abd al-Muttalib, Zayd ibn Haarithah, Ja’far ibn Abi Taalib and ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Rawaahah, but he did not do any of the things that these people do. If it was good, he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) would have done it before us. 

Ya’qoob (peace be upon him) did not strike his chest or scratch his face, or shed blood or take the day of the loss of Yoosuf as a festival or day of mourning. Rather he remembered his missing loved one and felt sad and distressed because of that. This is something no one can be blamed for. What is forbidden is these actions that have been inherited from the Jaahiliyyah, and which Islam forbids. 

Al-Bukhaari (1294) and Muslim (103) narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Mas’ood (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “He is not one of us who strikes his cheeks, rends his garment, or cries with the cry of the Jaahiliyyah.” 

These reprehensible actions that the Shi’ah do on the day of ‘Ashoora’ have no basis in Islam. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) did not do them, nor did any of his companions. None of his companions did them when he or anyone else died, although the loss of Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was greater than the death of al-Husayn (may Allaah be pleased with him). 

Al-Haafiz Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: Every Muslim should mourn the killing of al-Husayn (may Allaah be pleased with him), for he is one of the leaders of the Muslims, one of the scholars of the Sahaabah, and the son of the daughter of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), who was the best of his daughters. He was a devoted worshipper, and a courageous and generous man. But there is nothing good in what the Shi’ah do of expressing distress and grief, most of which may be done in order to show off. His father was better than him and he was killed, but they do not take his death as an anniversary as they do with the death of al-Husayn. His father was killed on a Friday as he was leaving the mosque after Fajr prayer, on the seventeenth of Ramadaan in 40 AH. ‘Uthmaan was better than ‘Ali according to Ahl al-Sunnah wa’l-Jamaa’ah, and he was killed when he was besieged in his house during the days of al-Tashreeq in Dhu’l-Hijjah of 36 AH, with his throat cut from one jugular vein to the other, but the people did not take his death as an anniversary. ‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab was better than ‘Ali and ‘Uthmaan, and he was killed as he was standing in the mihraab, praying Fajr and reciting Qur’aan, but the people did not take his death as an anniversary. Abu Bakr al-Siddeeq was better than him but the people did not take his death as an anniversary. The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) is the leader of the sons of Adam in this world and the Hereafter, and Allaah took him to Him as the Prophets died before him, but no one took the dates of their deaths as anniversaries on which they do what these ignorant Raafidis do on the day that al-Husayn was killed. … The best that can be said when remembering these and similar calamities is that which ‘Ali ibn al-Husayn narrated from his grandfather the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), who said: “There is no Muslim who is afflicted by a calamity and when he remembers it, even if it was in the dim and distant past, he says Inna Lillaahi wa inna ilayhi raaji’oon (verily to Allaah we belong and unto Him is our return), but Allaah will give him a reward like that of the day when it befell him.”

Narrated by Imam Ahmad and Ibn Majaah, end quote from al-Bidaayah wa’l-Nihaayah (8/221). 

And he said (8/220): The Raafidis went to extremes in the state of Bani Buwayh in the year 400 and thereabouts. The drums were beaten in Baghdad and other cities on the day of ‘Ashoora’, and sand and straw was strewn in the streets and marketplaces, and sackcloth was hung on the shops, and the people expressed grief and wept. Many of them did not drink water that night, in sympathy with al-Husayn, because he was killed when he was thirsty. Then the women went out barefaced, wailing and slapping their faces and chests, walking barefoot in the marketplaces, and other reprehensible innovations… What they intended by these and similar actions is to impugn the state of Banu Umayyah (the Umayyads), because he was killed during their era. 

On the day of ‘Ashoora, the Naasibis of Syria do the opposite of what the Raafidis and Shi’ah do. They used to cook grains on the day of ‘Ashoora and do ghusl and perfume themselves, and wear their finest garments, and they took that day as an Eid for which they made all kinds of food, and expressed happiness and joy, intending thereby to annoy the Raafidis and be different from them.

 Celebrating that day is an innovation (bid’ah), and making it an anniversary for mourning is also an innovation. Hence Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: 

Because of the killing of al-Husayn (may Allaah be pleased with him), shaytaan caused the people to introduce two innovations: the innovation of mourning and wailing on the day of ‘Ashoora’, by slapping the cheeks, weeping, and reciting eulogies. … and the innovation of rejoicing and celebrating. … So some introduced mourning and others introduced celebration, so they regarded the day of ‘Ashoora’ as a day for wearing kohl, doing ghusl, spending on the family and making special foods. … And every innovation is a going astray. None of the four imams of the Muslims or any other (scholars) regarded either of these things as mustahabb. End quote from Minhaaj al-Sunnah (4/554). 

It should be noted that these reprehensible actions are encouraged by the enemies of Islam, so that they can achieve their evil aims of distorting the image of Islam and its followers. Concerning this Moosa al-Musawi said in his book al-Shi’ah wa’l-Tas-heeh:  

But there can be no doubt that striking heads with swords and cutting the head in mourning for al-Husayn on the tenth day of Muharram reached Iran and Iraq and India during the British occupation of those lands. The British are the ones who exploited the ignorance and naiveté of the Shi’ah and their deep love for Imam al-Husayn, and taught them to strike their heads with swords. Until recently the British embassies in Tehran and Baghdad sponsored the Husayni parades in which this ugly spectacle appears in the streets and alleyways. The aim of the British imperialist policy of developing this ugly spectacle and exploiting it in the worst manner was to give an acceptable justification to the British people and the free press that opposed British colonialism in India and other Muslim countries, and to show the peoples of these countries as savages who needed someone to save them from their ignorance and savagery. Images of the parades that marched in the streets on the day of ‘Ashoora’, in which thousands of people were striking their backs with chains and making them bleed, and striking their heads with daggers and swords, appeared in British and European newspapers, and the politicians justified their colonization of these countries on the basis of a humane duty to colonize the lands of these people whose culture was like that so as to lead these peoples towards civility and progress. It was said that when Yaseen al-Haashimi, the Iraqi Prime Minister at the time of the British occupation of Iraq, visited London to negotiate with the British for an end to the Mandate, the British said to him: We are in Iraq to help the Iraqi people to make progress and attain happiness, and bring them out of savagery. This angered Yaseen al-Haashimi and he angrily walked out of the room where the negotiations were being held, but the British apologized politely and asked him with all respect to watch a documentary about Iraq, which turned out to be a film about the Husayni marches in the streets of al-Najaf, Karbala’ and al-Kaazimiyyah, showing horrific and off-putting images of people striking themselves with daggers and chains. It is as if the British wanted to tell him: Would an educated people with even a little civility do such things to themselves?! End quote. ... And Allaah knows best.