Imam Hussain (a.s), The champion of freedom


By Adill Hissan

I feel unworthy of writing about this tremendous personality, Al-Hussain. I do not know how to introduce him. How can you really describe consciousness; how can you define honor; how can you explain patience. All such human values are unworthy of being synonymous with the reality of Al-Hussain.

Whatever is written about Al-Hussain since his martyrdom until now and till the end of time is truly a mere attempt of knowing what this universal idea, whom we call Al-Hussain, is all about. Writing about someone like Al-Hussain is like chasing after the “mirage” in the middle of the desert.

As you know, conventionally, when introducing someone we usually tend to take the genealogy approach.

We deliberately try to present the names of the father, mother and whatever other names that are related to the individual so that the people may appreciate him or her. But this social norm of introduction may not be necessary in introducing someone like Imam Hussain .

Imam Hussain, in reality, stands alone as a distinguished gem in the crown of consciousness; as a bright unique galaxy in the entire cosmos of creation; Hussain’s reality has manifested the true nature of the throne of the Beloved. He has unveiled the true reality of the cosmological love towards the only true existence, the possessor of splendor and majesty-thul jalali walikram, Allah (God).

He has become as a measuring stick for all great men of human history (excluding prophets of God). Imam Hussain’s close kinship to the Prophet of Islam (s) and to the commander of the faithful Ali (AS) is not paramount to the greatness which he has earned, but surely his kinship to them would only add more wonder to the beauty; more jewels to the crown of wisdom. Hussain does not belong to the Shi’a nor to the Sunni nor to the Muslim community alone.

He is for all of humanity. There are many noble lessons to learn from the various chapters of the battle of Karbala. He has truly manifested the peak of every human principle; he gave life to human consciousness; he redefined the meaning of devotion; his perseverance has humbled the notion of perseverance; steadfastness was unable to comprehend his extraordinary capacity of endurance during moments of overwhelming suffering and hardship.

One extraordinary example of his remarkable fortitude is in the case of his infant son Abdullah when he was murdered while being carried with his sacred hands as pleading to the Muslim enemies for some water for his thirsty crying baby. In this particular episode he truly embodied the true meaning of sacrifice and martyrdom, when he uttered these words, in such difficult moments: “O’ Allah, O’ my Lord! My consolation is the fact that Thou in Thine Majesty are witnessing what I am going through.O Lord! Your Hussain has offered in your way whatever you had blessed him with. Bless Your Hussain, O Lord! with the acceptance of this sacrifice. Everything Hussain could do till now was through Your help and by Your Grace.” Such profound words of Imam Hussain were not uttered in order to obtain pity nor was it for Muslims to shed tears. Rather he has established a divine path through which human beings can seek forgiveness and reconciliation instead of revenge and division and he wanted to guide Muslims to the almighty God at times of hardship, calamities or the loss of loved ones.

He wanted people of all faiths to seek refuge in God at the most critical moments of our lives such as loosing or watching our loved ones suffer or being murdered. In such critical moments of loss and grief which are capable of incinerating a lofty mountain let alone a human being as Imam Hussain, yet he did not seek revenge from his enemies for the murder of his baby son rather he asked God to help him go through these difficult moments and he accepted what God has ordained for him. He also wanted people to be willing to sacrifice the most dear things to them such as their children if necessary, to uphold the principle of humanity; to maintain the principle of justice and to absolutely reject injustice; to live as free human being and not to be subjugated to the will of tyranny. This is a true form of sacrifice and devotion.

Patience was displayed at its highest level which was displayed by Imam Hussain and his comrades. When he recognized the eminent death of himself and his comrades, the spirit of Muhammad (s) and the consciousness of Ali had spoken. The lips of God’s Glory began to sing the symphony of love in longing for the Beloved.

The chorus of the human essence became silent in reverence to its leader “al Hussain”; his words are the divine lyrics to be sung in our battle of the self on the ground of our body at times of challenge and struggle; and these words are: “O Allah! It is Thee in whom I trust amid all grief. You are my hope amid all violence. Thou are my refuge and provision in everything that happens to me. How many grievances weaken the heart, leaving me with no means to handle them, during which friend deserts me, and enemy rejoices in it. I lay it before Thee and complain of it to Thee, because of my desire in Thee, Thee alone.

You relieve me of it and remove it from me. Thou are the Master of all Grace, the Essence of Goodness, and the Ultimate Resort of all Desire.” Bravery was embarrassed by the true heroism of Hussain and his comrades; His ultimate purpose was seeking reform within the Muslim community as he declared “…I have risen to seek reform within the community of my Grandfather Muhammad…” He fought against injustice, oppression and exposed hypocrisy and corruption. He has become the hope for the hopeless; the sanctuary for the oppressed and he is the guide for every mission of reform in all societies. Islam’s main principle is “unifying Allah”; when Hussain marched to Karbala he had only one thought in mind that is “You alone we worship and you alone we seek help from-Quran1:5″. He feared no one but Allah; he is indeed a wonderful example of a true “unifier” Quran’s essence is ” To command the good and forbid the mischief “; Hussain’s goal was just that. Hussain is the essence of the holy Quran.

Frankly it is almost impossible to express myself in writing about Imam Hussain. And I do not think anyone would be able to define the various dimensions of Hussain’s personality. Hussain is the fascination of poets; the imagination of artists and the contemplation of writers. He is a challenge to all writers for all times to come, just like his father Imam Ali and his grandfather the Holy prophet of Islam. Let me escape for a moment to the world of imagination so that I may be able to express some words regarding the beauty of Hussain. It is said that one day a writer wanted to contemplate on Imam Hussain’s personality. At first he thought it would be an easy task. He had written about every great man with the stroke of his pen for he was a master in writing.

Then as he was about to write his essay, his hands suddenly froze. His thoughts stalled. His being was shaken. He was frightened. Then he turned towards Allah(SW) asking him for help. His request was granted. He regained his strength and started his journey in the wonders of creation; in the beauty of Hussain. What a journey it was; He entered the world of wonders; The world of knowledge; The world of wisdom; The world of contemplation; What a journey it was. He was exploring in the wonders of the ultimate human qualities. Suddenly his inner feelings told him that he is approaching unexplained reality; the reality of Hussain (A.S); Then he stopped; He tried to collect himself; He looked ahead; He found himself facing a lofty mountain; Its summit he perceived not; Its size he comprehended not; Its likeness he’s seen not. Then a voice from the unseen called out. You are in the station of the reality of Hussain and the voice has confirmed that this station is only a sign towards the Garden of the Beloved.

He was overwhelmed with this frightening, pleasurable experience. But he had the charisma to go on with his explorative mission. He marched toward the mountain. What a journey it was! At times he felt shame and disgrace of what achievements the human being could attain. But he also felt that he could learn from these wonders of Hussain(A.S) to reach human perfection. Now he paused to see how far he is from reaching the top of this mountain; Hussain. Fatigue and exhaustion has taken him.

For a moment he thought he was there. He is about to unlock the mystery of Hussain He was about to know the reality of Hussain. So he stopped and looked around him. He said, this can’t be true; he looked at his watch; he realized that days and months have passed. Then he realized that he is still roaming in the middle of the valley which surrounds the mountain. Finally he determines that his journey is unattainable. Then he pondered for a moment and said: if that is Hussain, then what would be his father Ali and grandfather Mohammad (s) the prophet of Islam, like. And that is Hussain .

He remains a mystery and a secret of Allah’s creation because his reality belongs to the sublime knowledge of Allah (God). No human being will ever comprehend the phenomena of Hussain. He was a true representation of the Holy Prophet’s beauty and reality, for he was described by Prophet Mohammad (s) in an authentic tradition as “Hussain is from me and I am from Hussain” Hussain is the necessary principle to ensure the continuity of true Islam. He is the dynamic force to maintain the purity of the Religion of Mohammad (s); an everlasting challenge to every Evil on this earth. Peace be upon the children of Al Hussain, upon the companion of Al Hussain, the peace of the Beloved Allah from us to you O Hussain as long as we live and as long as there is day and night till the Day of resurrection.