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  Culture - Ashura - Imam Husain

  • The first month of Lunar Calendar begins with the month of Moharram. The significance of this month is the martyrdom of Imam Husain (third shiite Imam).

Ashura ceremony, Tehran

  • Imam Husain (Imam Hossein) was born on 3rd of Shaban 4 A.H. in Mediana. He was the son of Ali-ibne-Abi Talib (Hazrat Ali, the first Shiite Imam) and Fatima, the daughter of the Holy Prophet Mohammad. His title was Saiyid-ush-Shohada. He was 57 years old when he was martyred at Kerbala, on 10th Moharram 61 A. H.. He was buried in Kerbala.

  • It is said that as the good news of birth of his grandson reached Prophet Mohammad, he came and recited Azan and other prayers in his right and left ears, respectively. Prophet Mohammad named him Husain in compliance with God's command on the 7th day of his birth. Prophet Mohammad prophesied that his second grandson Husain would rescue the faith of Islam when Yezid attempts to destroy it.

  • When Yezid the son of Muawiya came to power, he held himself as the successor of Prophet Mohammad demanding to be as the leading guide of the faith. Imam Husain said that he would never gives in at any cost to anything other than God's commands and what his grandfather had established.

Ashura ceremony, Tehran

  • Imam Husain went to Medina and led a secluded life. Yezid continued to harass Imam Husain so he went to Mecca. Yezid said he would murder him in Kaaba so he had to leave Mecca a day before Hajj pilgrimage. When Imam Husain horse mysteriously stopped in Kerbala and did not go further, he knew that this is the land of suffering and martyrdom.

  • On the 7th day of Moharram, water supply was cut off the Imam's camp including men, women, children and the torment of thirst and hunger began.

  • At 10th day of Moharram known as Ashura (Ashoora), Yezid ordered his army to march towards him. Imam Husain gathered his followers and told them that God (Allah) has permitted us to be in a holy war on this day and God will reward us for our Martyrdom. He prepared his followers for death and bridging from this world to the other world.

  • After Imam Husain followers gave their lives one by one, he brought his six month old baby son Ali Asghar, offering him to his enemy and requesting for some water for the baby who was dying of thirst. Instead of water, poison was given to the baby which killed him.

  • At last, Imam Husain came to the field and was murdered. His head was cut off and raised on a lance.The head of Holy Imam began praising God and saying "Allaho Akbar' meaning "All glory be to God who is the greatest!"

  • Muslims mourn during this period in memory of Imam Husain. People wear black during these times.