Monday, May 20, 2013

Tragedy of Karbala - Events in Kufa

Excerpts from :

 Kitab Maqtal al - Husain by Abu Mikhnaf  (Lut bin Yahya bin Said - Died in 157 AH)

Yahya bin Said - the father of Abu Mikhnaf was a companion of Moulana Ali (SA) 

Numan bin Bashir - the Governor of Kufa was considered weak by the partisans of Banu Umayyah. Abdullah bin Muslim b Sa'ad was the first among them to write a letter to Yazid, stating that he should send a more powerful Governor , if he wishes to control the Shih uprising lead by Muslim bin Aquil. Others also wrote in similar vain. 

Yazid consults Sarjun a mawla of Mu'awiyah, who advises that he should appoint Ubaydallah bin Ziyad, who was the Governor of Basra. Ubaydallah enters Kufa with his entourage, having his face covered, enters the Palace and confronts Numan bin Bashir, and replaces him. 

On getting this news of the arrival of Ubaydallah and his appointment as Governor, Muslim b Aquil moves from the house of Mukhtar to the house of Hani b Urwah Muradi. It is reported that 18,000 Shih pledged alliance to Imam Husain (SA). Muslim writes to Imam Husain (SA) to come in haste to Kufa.

Ibn Ziyad is keen to find the whereabouts of Muslim bin Aquil, and he gives Ma'quil a spy 3000 dirhams to penetrate the Shih group and report the developments. Ma'quil manages to convince Muslim b Awsaja, and finally manages to meet Muslim b Aquil and gives 3000 dirhams and pledges alliance. Thus the Ummayah mole, passes all the secrets to Ibn Ziyad. 

Here I would like my readers to reflect - do taffakur on the development that happens in the following two incidents. 

Ubaydallah comes to pay a visit to Hani b Urwah a very prominent leader of Kufa and the powerful Madhhij clan. Hani was recuperating from an illness. The leaders of Shih requested permission from  Hani to kill the tyrant - but Arab honor prevented Hani from doing such a deed.  " I do not want him to be killed in my house"

Ubaydallah once again came to visit Sharik b A'war who Ibn Ziyad and other Governors, held in high esteem, although he was a staunch Shi'ite. Sharik told Muslim b Aquil to kill the tyrant. Once again Arab honor prevailed, and Hani disapproved and ubaydallah walked safe. 

Do reflect on the above historical incident. Had Ubaydallah been killed, the course of history would definitely have been different. Imam Husain (SA) would have entered Kufa in triumph, the tragedy of Karbala would not have happened. 

True - but reflect again - what about the promise Imam Husain (SA) gave to Nana Nabi (SA) to free the debt of Ummah till Kayamah ? What about the emancipation of souls of the followers of Ahalabait (SA) till the day of Kayamah ? 

A lesson learnt. All historical events transpire with a premeditated design, and have a deep and hidden purpose, and it is good for the humanity at large, which we ordinary people fail to comprehend. ALLAH KNOWS BEST. I have shared the historical event that transpired in Kufa, so that readers may reflect.

Hani is summoned by Ibn Ziyad. Ma'quil the spy confronts Hani and Ibn Ziyad commands Hani to bring Muslim b Aquil, to which Hani the ever proud Arab retorts : " No by Allah I will never bring him to you. Do you expect me to bring my guest for you to kill ? He offers  guarantees and securities, that Muslim b Aquil means no harm to the Governor, but will not offer his guest to be killed. 

When Muslim b Amr Bahili tries to meditate Hani replies : " I have numerous followers, but even if I was alone, I will die fighting to protect my guest." 

Ibn Ziyad becomes furious and starts hitting Hani with a stick, so much so, that the flesh from his cheeks and forehead was splattered over his beard, and the cane broke. The Madhhij clan, of which Hani was the leader, surrounds the palace. 

Abdullah bin Khazim was the first eyewitness to report the development to Muslim b Aquil. Of the 18000 who had pledged alliance, nearly 4000 were nereby , who assembled to fight. 

Ubaydallah b Amr was entrusted with the command of Kindah group. Muslim b Awsajah was given command over the Asadi and Madhhij group. Abu Thumamah commanded the Tamim and Hamdan group, and Abbas b Jadah the Medina group. They all marched towards the Palace. 

Ibn Ziyad on the other hand summoned leaders close to him, and sent them out to their respective tribes, and told them to convince the members to desist from the attack, or else they will face severe consequences. All these Umamayah partisans managed to cajole and threaten their respective clan members. 

The womenfolk of Kufa played a decisive role and convinced their husbands, sons and brothers to desist from fighting the Governor. 

This than was another turning point in the events of Kufa, which had a direct result on the Tragedy of Karbala.

This is how Abbas Jadali reports : When we left with Muslim b Aquil marching towards the Palace, we were 4000 strong. When we approached the Palace, we had shrunk to 300 men. By evening only 30 were with Muslim b Aquil who offered asr namaz in the masjid. 

None the less he marched towards the Palace gate, and people started deserting him, from 10 supporters, he was left all alone, when he left the gate of Kindah. 

Here I would request my readers to pause and reflect on the events that unfolded within hours.

Muslim b Aquil seeks water to quench his thirst and a woman named Tawah offers him water, and gives him shelter. 

At nightfall Ibn Ziyad commands everyone to be present for the Isa namaz. If any one fails to turn up, they will loose protection and security. 

Bilal the son of Tawah confides the secret to Abd al Rahmn Ash'ath, who informs Ibn Ziyad of the hiding place of Muslim b Aquil. 

Sixty/seventy people from the tribe of Qays go out to catch Muslim b Aquil. Muslim b Aquil comes out alone to fight. When Muhammad b Ash'ath approaches him and said : " O young man, you can have a guarantee of security. Do not cause your self to perish."

Muslim b Aquil continues to attack reciting: 
" I swear that I will not be killed except as a free person
Though I consider death something repulsive
Every person will one day confront evil
And the cold will be mixed with bitter hot
The soul will become tranquil and free of any fear
I suspect that I will be deceived and duped "

But Ash'ath manages to convince Muslim that he would not be cheated or betrayed and he need not fear , as the Umayyads were his cousins. 

They betrayed him, and Muslim b Aquil was helpless. He requested Ash'ath to despatch a letter to his family and Imam Husain (SA) of the events that have transpired. 'The Kufans have lied to you and to me ' he wrote.

Extremely thirsty he was denied to drink water by one Muslim b Amr Bahli. 

The martyrdom of Muslim b Aquil took place on Sunday 8th Dhulhijjah 60 A.H. Imam Hussain (SA) left Makkah on the very same day. 

Posted as an act of Hamd and Shukr on the joyous occasion of home coming of  Aqa Moula (TUS)  after a long recuperating medical stay at Saifee Hospital for more than 4 months.
10 Rajab ul Asab 1433 H 


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