10th of Ramzan – Death Anniversary of Hazrat Khadija (a.s.) – Umm-ul-Momineen and the first and most beloved wife of Prophet Mohammad (sawaw).
According to traditions, Hazrat Khadija(a.s.) was born in 565 A.D. and died on the 10th of Ramzan 3 years before Hijrah (migration from Makkah to Madina) at the age of 58.
Bibi Khadija (a.s.) was the first person to accept Islam and as per authentic traditions, was the first wife of our Prophet Mohammad (sawaw) and it was her first marriage as well. This fact is contrary to the beliefs of other Muslims according to whom Bibi Khadija(a.s.) married earlier as well. She was the distinguished mother of the leader of the women of Paradise – Bibi Fatima Zehra(s.a.).
She belonged to the same Banu Hashim clan of the Banu Asad tribe from which our Holy Prophet(sawaw) belonged and they were distant cousins as well with their genealogy being as follows: Khadija binte Khawailad ibne Asad ibne Abdul Uzza ibne Qusayy bin Kalaab and Prophet Mohammad(sawaw) ibne Abdullah ibne Abdul Muttalib ibne Hashim ibne Abd Munaf ibne Qusayy bin Kalaab.
Hazrat Khadija(a.s.) was the wealthiest businessperson of the entire Arab region and after the declaration of Islam by the Prophet(sawaw) she dedicated all her wealth for the cause of Islam. She, along with Hazrat Abu Talib(a.s.) were the two people who helped our Prophet(sawaw) the most by offering their wealth and protection during the early part of Islam. That was the reason when both of them died one after the other in the same year, our Prophet (sawaw) was so grieved that he declared that year as Aam-ul-Huzn – the year of sorrow/grief.
Hazrat Khadija (SA), the wife, the companion and the friend of Muhammad Mustafa (SAW), the Messenger of Allah, and the benefactress of Islam and the Muslims, fell ill. Her illness was brief and fatal. All her life she had lived in the midst of abundance and luxury but the three years of exile had been a time of excessive austerity for er which inevitably took its toll.
She was the first woman to declare that the Creator was One, and that Muhammad (SAW) was His Messenger. The glory and honor of being the first woman believer in the whole world, is hers to all eternity.
When Islam came under mounting pressure from its enemies, Khadija (SA) sacrificed her comforts, her wealth and her home for it; and now it would appear that she sacrificed her life too, in the way of Islam. Without a doubt, if she had lived in her palatial house in Mecca, surrounded by her maid-servants, she might have lived for many more years. But she preferred to stand by her husband and his clan, and to share the hardships of life with them. During the siege, she had to endure not only the pangs of hunger and thirst but also the extremes of heat in summer and cold in winter; yet she never complained to her husband about them. Whether times were good or bad, whether she had plenty or she had nothing, she was always cheerful. Austerity and privation never soured her. It was this temperament that was an unfailing source of comfort, courage and strength for her husband during the blackest and trying moments of his life.
During the years of the siege, Khadija (SA) spent all her fortune on buying essentials like food and water for the clan of her husband. hen she returned to her house, her last cent was gone; and when she died, there was not enough money available in the house to even buy her shroud. A cloak of her husband was used as a shroud for her, and she was given a burial in it.
Muhammad Mustafa (SAW) never took another wife as long as Khadija (SA) lived, and if she had not died, it is most probable that he would never have married any other woman.
Khadija (SA) died on the 10th of Ramadan, 619 A.D. One month after her death, Muhammad Mustafa (SAW) had to sustain yet another shock in the death of Abu Talib (AS), his uncle and guardian, and the bulwark of Islam. The deaths of these two friends – Khadija (SA) and Abu Talib (AS)- were the greatest shocks that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) had to endure in the fifty years of his life.
The two lamps of their glorious lives were extinguished. He was overwhelmed with sorrow. He called the year of their death as, “The Year of Sorrow” (Aa’m ul Hozn).
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15th of Shaban – Zahoor-e-pur noor of the last Wasi of Prophet Mohammad (sawaw), Allah(swt) hujjat on earth and the Imam-e-Asr waz-Zaman, Imam Mohammad Mehdi (atfs) ibn-e-
The promised Mehdi(Ajallahu ta’allah farajahu sharif – atfs), who is usually mentioned by his title of Imam-e-Asr (the Imam of the “Period”) and Sahib uz-Zaman (the Lord of the Time/Age), is the son of the eleventh Imam Hasan Askari(a.s.). His name and kunniyat is the same as that of the Holy Prophet(sawaw).
He was born in Samarrah on the 15th of Shabaan in 255 A.H./868 A.D. and until 260 A.H./872 A.D. when his father was martyred, lived under his father’s care and guidance (Kamal-ud-Din Vol 2 Page 424, 428, 430, 433). His mother was Bibi Nargis Khatoon who was the grand daughter of Qaisar-e-Rome from the father’s side and the grand daughter of Janab-e-Shamoun who was the successor of Hazrat Eisa(a.s.) (Kamal-ud-Din Vol. 2 Page 420,424). His most famous titles are Mahdi, Hujjat, Qaem, Montazar, Montazir, Sahib-uz-Zaman, Imam al-Asr and Khalaf as-Salaeh
Sayyida Hakima who was the sister of the 10th Imam (Imam Ali Naqi(a.s.)) relates that she went to her nephew’s (11th Imam – Imam Hasan Askari(a.s.)) house for iftaar in the evening of 14th of Shabaan 255 A.H. The 11th Imam asked her to stay as his son was to be born soon. There was no sign of pregnancy on Bibi Narjis Khatoon. The 11th Imam asked her to recite Suratul Qadr on Bibi Narjis Khatoon. At the time of Fajr on 15th Shabaan, Sayyida Hakima heard the Sura being recited from the womb of Bibi Narjis Khatoon. The 11th imam told her that the birth would occur very soon. She states that as the time approached, it appeared as if a curtain was raised between her and Bibi Narigs and after a while when that curtain was removed, she saw a beautiful baby boy performing sajda (prostration) and proclaiming the oneness of Allah and the Prophet-hood of the Prophet Mohammad(sawaw). According to a report, on his right shoulder was inscripted “Jaa al- haqqa wa zahqal batil innal batila kana zahooqa” (see translation below).
He also recited the 5th aya of Suratul-Qasas “And We intend to bestow (Our) favours upon those who are weak in the land and make them the Imams (leaders) and make them the heirs”. On his right hand was written the 82nd aya of Sura Bani Israel “The truth has come and falsehood has vanished; Indeed falsehood (is a thing by nature) vanishing”. The 11th Imam(a.s.) arranged to have various animals slaughtered as aqeeqa and distributed among trusted believers so that there could be many witnesses of the birth of Imam Mehdi(a.s.).
Birth protected from the eyes of common people
The tyrant Abbasid rulers were aware of the prophecies of the Holy Prophet(sawaw) that the son of Imam Hasan al-Askari(a.s.) by the name of Mahdi will appear to remove all kinds of corruption and tyranny.
Hence they planned to eliminate the child when he is born. Due to this the birth of Imam Mahdi(a.s.) was kept a secret like that of Hazrat Ibrahim(a.s.) and Hazrat Moosa(a.s.). So much so that except for the most trusted of the shias and his own family, no one knew of the
existence of Hazrat(a.s.). Inspite of this whenever there was an opportunity, Imam Hasan al-Askari(a.s.) showed his son to his trustworthy followers; that in future they may follow him. This was in order that the shias may remain firm upon the right path, and not be led astray.
A servant Abu Ghanim says:
“Abu Mohammed(a.s.) has a son whose name is Muhammed.” On the third day of his birth he brought him before his companions and said: ….
“After me he is your Master of the affair, he is my successor, he is the same ‘Qaem’, who is awaited by alt When the earth will be fraught with injustice and oppression then he will reappear and fill the earth with justice and righteousness.”
(Kamal-ud-din Vol. 2 Pg. 431)
One of the women slaves called Naseema relates that when she went to see the baby Imam in his cradle she greeted him with salaam and was replied to. She then sneezed and the Imam said: “Yarhamukallah – it is a blessing from Allah and you have 3 days immunity from death”.
The last Imam(a.s.) was hidden from public view and only a few of the elite among the Shias were able to meet him. After the martyrdom of his father he became the Imam and recited the namaz-e-janaza of his father. Later by Divine Command he went into occultation (ghaybat).
Thereafter he appeared only to his deputies (naibeen) and even then only in exceptional circumstances.
Ghaibat (occultation) of the last Imam (a.s.)
The Imam’s ghaibat (occultation) was in two phase – Ghaibat-e-Sughra (minor occultation) was for about 69 years – 260 A.H. (872 A.D.) to 329 A.H. (939 A.D.) and the Ghaibat-e-Kubra (greater occultation) started in 329 A.H. (939 A.D.)and will continue until Allah(swt) so wills.
the 6th Imam, Imam as-Sadiq (a.s.) states the reason of the ghaibat as prevention against being killed. Ishaq bin Yaqub (on authority from 12th Imam) says that all the Imams were under oppressive rulers. Our 12th Imam is hidden in order to rise in arms with obedience to no one.
Muhammad Yaqub Al-Kulayni has said that ghaibat is a test from Allah to test the steadfastness of belief in Imam.
If he is to remain in Ghaibat, what is the use of his existence?
Belief creates hope giving strength to the oppressed. It is a deterrent for the committing of injustice as one is always aware of the constant presence of the Imam.
To make the Shias used to approaching scholars instead of Imam himself. It started during the time of the 10th Imam who was under almost constant house arrest in Samarra and continuing through.
GHAIBAT-E-SUGHRA (160 A.H. to 329 A.H.)
During Ghaibut-us-Sughra, the Imam(a.s.) appointed four deputies/ representatives to represent him among the people. After the death of the fourth deputy, the Imam(a.s.) went into Ghaibut-e-Kubra (major occultation). This was on the 10th Shawal 329 A.H.
The 4 representatives were :
1. Uthman bin Saeed Umravi(A.R.)
It is said that at the age of 11 years he was a servant in the house of the 9th Imam later to enjoy the confidence of Imam. He occupied the same position of trust with the 10th and 11th Imam who told their Shias that after him they would not see the 12th Imam and would have to obey Uthman. After the 11th Imam’s martyrdom Uthman moved to Baghdad and disguised as a butter seller he set up the collection of khums for Imam. He served the 12th Imam for 5 years and received a letter near his death from Imam(a.s.) telling him to appoint his son Mohammed as the next representative.
2. Muhammad bin Uthman bin Saeed Umravi(A.R.)
He continued in his fathers footsteps also acting as a butter seller. He managed to keep Imam’s existence a secret from the Abbasids until the early years of the reign of Al-Mutadid. The rulers then started searching hard for Imam and killed countless mu’mineen with even the slightest resemblance to Imam. Spies were set up to probe the khums network. Imam issued an order for Shias not to take his name nor show mas’ala of khums to anyone until absolutely sure of them. As instructed by Imam he appointed Husayn bin Rawh as the next representative after his death in 305 A.H. He served the Imam(a.s.) for 40 years.
3. Husayn bin Rawh (A.R.)
His kuniyya was Abul Qasim. His sociable nature won him respect even from the Ahlul-Sunnah. He managed to keep his activities a secret from the rulers whilst maintaining good relations with them. It is to him that we address the ‘ariza’ to be delivered to Imam. He served faithfully until he died in Sha’ban 326 a.h. revealing the appointment of Ali bin Muhammad Samry after him. He served for 21 years.
4. Ali bin Muhammad Samry (A.R.)
He served for only three years. A week before his death he received a letter from the Imam(a.s.) telling him of his forthcoming death and that there would be no representative after him and that Imam(a.s.) was now going into Ghaibat-e-Kubra (major occultation). Imam(a.s.) would then appear when Allah(swt) wills it. Ali bin Muhammad Samry(a.r.) died on 15th Shabaan 329 A.H. after serving for 3 years.
GHAIBAT E KUBRA (329 A.H. to present)
Imam’s ghaibat is described by the Aimma like that of Prophet Yusuf (A.S.) who was amongst his brothers yet they did not recognise him.
Imam is known to meet a believer on 3 occasions:
1. At the time of trouble.
2. He is present at every Hajj.
3. He attends the funeral of every believer who has no religious obligations pending on him/her e.g. Khums.
During this time he continues to guide. Numerous letters have been received from him by (to quote a few) Ishaq bin Yaqub, Sheikh Mufeed…
It is reported that 30 people all over the world meet with him regularly.
Responsibilities during Ghaibat-e-Kubra
1. Pray for the safety of Imam(a.s.) at all time.
2. Be in waiting for Imam(a.s.) at all times.
3. Give Sadaqa for Imam(a.s.).
4. Pray for his re-appearance.
5. Whenever faced with difficulty (whether small or big) ask for assistance from Imam(a.s.).
6. Whenever his name is heard or recited, one should stand if possible, send salaams on him, put hand on head and bow.
7. If possible perform Hajj/Umra for Imam(a.s.). (Hajj-After own Wajibat)
8. Prepare for the re-appearance of the Imam(a.s.) by organizing oneself and following the teachings of Islam in its true letter and spirit.
13th of Rajab – zahoor of Maula-e-Kainaat, Imam-ul- Muttaqeen, Ameer-al-Momineen, Wali-Allah, Sher-e-Khuda and the 1st Holy Imam, Imam Ali ibn-e-Abi Talib(a.s.). He is the only person in the whole history to have been born inside the Kaaba in Makkah. He was born in the 30th year of the Elephant (10 years before the declaration of Nabuwwat).
Allah(swt) says in the Holy Quran – Sura 5 (Al-Maaeda) Ayat 55 – “Only Allah is your Vali and His Messenger and those who believe, those who keep up prayers and pay the poor-rate while they bow.” (Translation by Shakir Ali). Muslim scholars of all sects are unanimous that this ayat was sent by Allah(swt) in praise of Imam Ali(a.s.) and primarily based on this ayat, the Shias believe in the wilayat of Imam Ali(a.s.).
Historical aspect of the birth of Imam Ali(a.s.)
Since it is the birth of the Holy Imam(a.s.), I wanted to reflect on the historical aspect of his birth.
When Imam Ali(a.s.) was about to be born, his mother Janab Fatima bint- e-Asad went to the Holy Kaaba and touched herself with its wall and prayed to Allah(swt) in the following words which are recorded in all important books of history: “O Allah, I firmly believe in you, your prophets and your books. I bear testimony to my ancestor Ibrahim(a.s.)’s prophethood. I beseech you through this house of yours, its constructor and the child who is in my womb, make this problem very easy for me”. At once, the wall of Kaaba split and Bibi Fatima bint-e-Asad entered the Kaaba and the wall got back to its original position. Just imagine, a pregnant women whose child is about to be born stayed inside the Kaaba for 3 days and 3 nights apparently without food and water – not so – for sure food and water must have been provided to her by divine methods by Allah(swt).
After failing to open the door of Kaaba for 3 days, the people witnessed the unexpected – the wall of Kaaba got split again and Bibi Fatima bint-e-Asad got out with a new born child in her hands.
Fatima bint-e-Asad called for Prophet Mohammad(sawaw) and said to him that her child had not spoken a word, has not cried and not even opened his eyes since birth for 3 days now. Prophet Mohammad(sawaw), with a smile on his face, took Imam Ali(a.s.) in his hands and gave his tongue in the mouth of Imam Ali(a.s.). Sensing the tongue of Risalat, the child immediately opened his eyes and said “As-salam-o- alaika ya Rasool Allah (Peace be upon you O Prophet of Allah!)”. The prophet replied to him and asked him why he had not opened his eyes until now. Imam Ali(a.s.) replied “How could I open my eyes in this world and see the idols placed in the Kaaba before seeing your face”. After this, Imam Ali(a.s.) recited from all the four divine books of Allah(swt).
Phenomena of a new-born child talking
It might be confusing or difficult for some people to believe a new-born child talking. Please bear in mind that ours is the Prophet(sawaw) on whose hands even the stones started reciting Kalma, and in this case, it was the child of a human being.
Please also bear in mind that in the Quran Allah(swt) states that when Hazrat Isa(a.s.) was born, he was brought to the people of bani Israeel and they questioned his mother Mariam(a.s.) about him. On the orders from Allah(swt), Mariam(a.s.) pointed out at the new born child for an answer and immediately Hazrat Isa(a.s.) started talking and said – I quote from Sura Mariam (19:30) “He said: Surely I am a servant of Allah; He has given me the Book and made me a prophet;” (Translation by Shakir Ali). This is the way Allah(swt) shows his qudrat (power/control) and bestows his chosen representatives with special abilities and moajzas (miracles).
Some Ahadees-e-Rasool(sawaw) about Imam Ali(a.s.)
Our beloved Prophet Mohammad(sawaw) has praised Imam Ali(a.s.) on numerous occasions and has given him various titles. Some of the Prophet’s(sawaw) sayings about him(a.s.) are as follows:
(1) Of whomsoever am I Maula, Ali(a.s.) is his/her Maula as well. O allah(swt) keep love with the one who loves him(a.s.) and keep enmity with the one who keeps enmity with him(a.s.)
(2) I am the city of Knowledge and Ali(a.s.) is its gate. Whoever wants to get knowledge should come to its gate.
(3) I am from Ali(a.s.) and Ali(a.s.) is from Me.
(4) Allah(swt) has created me and Ali(a.s.) from the same one Noor.
(5) Ali(a.s.) is Kull-e-Imaan (Total Faith)
(6) Ali(a.s.) is to me as Haroon(a.s.) was to Moosa(a.s.)
(7) Ali(a.s.) is the distributor of Paradise and Hell.
(8) Ali(a.s.) is my brother in the world and hereafter.
(9) Looking at Ali’s(a.s.) face is Ibadaah.
(10) Talking about Ali(a.s.) in your gatherings and meetings is Ibadaah.
(11) Keeping love of Ali(a.s.) in ones heart is Ibadaah.
(12) Ali(a.s.) is with Quran and Quran is with Ali(a.s.)
(13) Ali(a.s.) is with Haqq (truth) and Haqq is with Ali(a.s.) – O Allah(swt) turn Haqq in the same direction in which Ali(a.s.) turns.
(14) Ali(a.s.) will lead his Shias (followers, believers, friends) on the day of judgement.
(15) O Ali(a.s.) you and your Shias are the people of paradise.
(16) One who keeps enmity and jealously with Ali(a.s.) will never enter paradise.
(17) The example of Ali(a.s.) is like the example of Kaaba. (my comments: Remember that in the quran Allah(swt) states that Kaaba is the guide of momineen)
(18) O Ali(a.s), your body is my body, O Ali(a.s.) your flesh is my flesh, O Ali(a.s.) your blood is my blood, O Ali(a.s.) your soul is my soul.
(19) The one who loves Ali(a.s.) loves me and the one who loves me loves Allah(swt); the one who is jealous of Ali(a.s.) is jealous of me and the one who was jealous of me is jealous of Allah(swt).
(20) Obedience of Ali(a.s.) is my obedience and his(a.s.) disobedience is my disobedience.
(21) Every Prophet has a Wasi and Waris and my Waris and Wasi is Ali(a.s.).
(22) On the day of Dawat-zul-Asheera (the first ever Dawah in Islam) Prophet Mohammad(sawaw) declared “The one who accepts my messages and helps me today will be my Wasi, my Wazir and my Khalifa after me”. All historical references mention that Imam Ali(a.s.) was the only one to accept the message and help the Prophet(sawaw). This was the first explicit hadith of Wilayat and Wisayat of Imam Ali(a.s.) on the very first day when the message of Islam was announced by the Prophet(sawaw).