Commemorating the death of Imam Hasan ibne Ali Al-Askari (A.S.)
The martyrdom of our 11th Imam, Imam Hasan ibne `Ali Al-Askari (peace be upon him) is a day of grief and sorrow as we commemorate the loss of the 11th Divinely appointed representative of Rasulullah (peace be upon him and his family) on Earth. However at the same time, it is also a day of hope and anticipation as it is on this day that the Imamate of our 12th and current Imam began. With the arrival of the death anniversary of this noble personality, we present the following thoughts on his short life.
The Imam was born in the year 232 AH in the city of Madinah, and although this was his place of birth and the resting place of his grandfather, the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him and his family) and many of his family members, this did not stop the tyrants of the Abbaside Empire from ensuring that he too would be under their constant watch and supervision (just as the previous Imams had been). Since they needed to keep a very close tab on this Imam, they forced him to Samarrah – a city just outside of Baghdad in Iraq.
The Bani Abbas knew the haadith of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) which foretold of the 12th Imam that would come from the progeny of `Ali and Fatimah (peace be upon both of them) who would come to establish justice and equality on the Earth as it would being filled with injustice, oppression and tyranny and thus, they needed to carefully watch the 11th Imam – as their thrones and kingdom were on the line!
None the less, it was the will of Allah (glory and greatness be to Him) to bring a young woman from the Roman Empire to the city of Sammarrah, Iraq to wed the Imam and to be the mother of the saviour of humanity.
The books of history of the Shi’a do not record much about this Imam, primarily due to the fact that he spent most of his life in prison or under very close surveillance in the form of house arrest by the ruling powers of his time – but in a way this too was a blessing and a way for the true followers to learn a valuable lesson.
In the Imam being under such close watch, it was the final training ground for his son who would come who would have to go into two separate and distinct occultations – the Minor or Sughra and the Major or Kubra. Even though the 11th Imam was under house arrest and constant watch, however he still had the ability to lead his Shi`a and to have his teachings conveyed to his followers and without doubt this is an important lesson for us living today that even though some of our greatest scholars and Maraa`ja have been under the same conditions – and that too in the same country – however, still they have been able to lead and guide the community through the permission of Allah (glory and greatness be to Him) and of course the blessings of the 12th Imam.
The life of this Imam was cut short while he was only 28 years old – not the youngest Imam to be murdered, but his Imaamate was the shortest of all of the previous Imams lasting only 6 to 7 years.
As was the custom, the Imam was buried inside his house in the city of Samarrah next to his father – the 10th Imam. Later on, his wife, the mother of the 12th Imam was also buried in this same chamber.
Credit for above article: http://www.world-federation.org/Secretariat/Articles/Archive/Commemorating_death_Imam_Hasan_ibne_Ali_Al-Askari.htm
Commemorating the Wafat of Masuma-e-Qum (AS)
The daughter of the 7th Imam, the sister of the 8th Imam, and the aunt of the 9th Imam – Fatima, better known with the honorific title of “Bibi Masuma-e-Qum” is a woman who, although not in the category of the 14 infallibles, plays a very important role in the lives of the followers of the Ahlul Bait.
She was born and spent a portion of her life in Medina. At the age of 6, she was witness to her father leaving her due to the Abbaside caliph’s summons to Baghdad. Her grief did not end here as her loving brother, the 8th Imam, was also taken from her by the next Abbaside ruler and sent even further east – Mashad. Deciding to make the dangerous trek east to Khorasan to stay with her beloved brother, she made the move in a large caravan. According to some reports, as they approached the city of Qum, they were ambushed and it was here that she became extremely ill.
Historians report that she spent numerous days in Saveh, recovering her lost strength and then asked the people about Qum, which was a mere 80 kilometers ahead. Although weak, she asked to be transported there as she had heard that her brother had gone there and perhaps thought that he may still be there.
Whether it was due to the poison which she may have been given or due to the attack on her caravan, seventeen days after arriving in the city of Qum, she passed away without the meeting with her brother that she dreamed of having.
However, the history of this young woman and the city of Qum do not end with her death – rather, they open a new page in the greatness of Qum and the teachings of the Ahlul Bait.
It is most definitely through the Hand of Allah that she was guided to this city as numerous traditions tell us that Qum shall be the centre of knowledge and the place of refuge for the Shia during times of tribulation and calamities. When we look at the products of the Hawzah of Qum we see that the words of the 6th Imam and other Divinely appointed leaders is on the mark as at any time, over 50,000 students from all over the world are busy seeking out the springs of higher learning!
The sanctuary of Bibi Masuma-e-Qum is not only her resting place, and an area where teachers give lessons and students gather to study and learn from one another, but the graves of many scholars are also housed there, such as: Shaikh Abdul Kareem Haieri (the founder of the Qum Hawza); Ayatullah al-Uzma Burujerdi, Ayatullah al-Uzma Araki, Ayatullah al-Uzma Gulpaygani, Allamah Tabatabai, Allamah Murtaza Mutahhari, Ayatullah al-Uzma Baha ad-Dini and countless other scholars and Maraja Taqlid.
Through the blessings of such personalities and the presence of the respected Fatima-e-Masuma, the teachings of the Shia have spread throughout the world and shall continue to do so Insha-Allah until the coming of Imam al-Zaman.
Credit for above article: http://www.world-federation.org/Secretariat/Articles/Archive/commemortg_wafat_masuma_qum.htm
The wafat of Masuma e Qum takes place on the 4th of Rabiul Awwal and the Shahadat of 11th Imam takes place on the 8th of the same month. However, the program for both events will be held on Saturday, February 20th at the IMF Center in Hopkinton, MA on 115 Wood Street after Maghrib Salat. The speaker will be the resident aalim Maulana Rizwan Rizvi.