Thursday, January 01, 2009

Observing 'Ashura

Ashura falls on 10th Muharram, Tuesday, 6th January 2009.

Some points -

1. Our Master (s.a.w.) made it a choice to fast on that day,
2. Such a fast atones for the sins of the preceding year,
3. next to the fast of Ramadan, this fast is the most excellent,
4. you can fast from the 9th as well, as our Master the Prophet (s.a.w.) had intended to do so, but passed away before he could,
5. you can fast all the way from the 1st of Muharram if you wish to as well.

Historically, the following events took place on the 10th of Muharram -

1. Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta'ala) accepted the repentance of Adam ('Alaihis-Salaam) after his exile from Paradise; 

2. Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta'ala) saved Noah ('Alaihis-Salaam) and his companions in the ark; 

3. Allah extinguished the fire in which Abraham ('Alaihis-Salaam) was thrown by Nimrod; 

4. And Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta'ala) spoke directly to Moses ('Alaihis-Salaam) and gave him the Commandments. 

5. Ahab ('Alaihis-Salaam) was restored to health (from leprosy); 

6. Joseph  ('Alaihis-Salaam) was reunited with his father Jacob ('Alaihis-Salaam), whose sight was restored from blindness; 

7. Jonah ('Alaihis-Salaam) was taken out from the belly of the fish; 

8. the sea was divided as the nation of israel led by Moses ('Alaihis-Salaam) was delivered from captivity and Pharoah’s army was destroyed. 

9. the kingdom of Solomon ('Alaihis-Salaam) was restored to him after he lost it; 

10. Jesus ('Alaihis-Salaam) was raised to heaven.

Now, Ashura is commemorated with a great deal of significance amongst the Shi'a Muslims. 

So, if you are a follower of the Ahlussunnah wal Jama'ah (Sunni for short), you would do well just to note the above list and not get yourself involved in any other acts, as they would be forbidden to you as bid'ah.

 The Shi'a have their own reasons and basis for what they do, and these would not be compatible with the beliefs of the Sunnis, so if you are Sunni, beware, but be respectful and let the Shi'a have their way. 

God knows best, and God is the best of Judges.

There is also the issue of cooking up a dish for Ashura which the Malays call bubur Ashura (Ashura porridge). 
Wahabis would consider it a bid'ah, so if you are a Wahabi, don't do it. 
If you are not a Wahabi, then you may want to make such a dish, and not give it to a Wahabi
The significance of this dish is purely historical and not based on Quran nor Sunnah of our Master the Prophet (s.a.w.), so do not do it with such an intent in mind. 
The significance is purely to replicate what the Prophet Noah (a.s.), did on the day of Ashura, when the Ark arrived on land. 
He collected all the remaining food on board in order to celebrate and give thanks, and all that was left of their food stocks were small amounts of beans and grains, which he cooked and fed his surviving family. 
The replication of this act, that is the cooking of a dish comprised of beans and grains, serves as a commemoration and reminder of the event, and of how God tests the prophets and believers and then he saves them when they remain true to Him. 
Which is actually the common message in all the stories listed above.

God knows best.


reedflute said...

I guess we should not offer Bubur Cha Cha, Bubur Pulut Hitam and Bubur Ayam to Wahabis on Asyura too... Thank you for the posts on the hajj. May Allah & Rasul bless you and family.

mawardewi said...

Salam bro.. I have been looking out for the significance of Ashurah. Thank you for sharing this post:).

MudPie said...

Reedflute, mawardewi - thanks for dropping by. Have a blessed Ashurah. By the way, Ashura means "the Tenth".