Chapter Five: Hussain ibn ‘Ali al Murtada

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Chapter Five: Hussain ibn ‘Ali al Murtada

 

Name and Lineage

Hussain ibn ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib ibn ‘Abdul Muttalib ibn Hashim al Qurashi al Hashimi.

His mother is Fatimah al Zahra bint Rasulillah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

His kunyah (agnomen) was Abu ‘Abdullah.

His titles were Rayhanat al Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam (the sweet smelling flower of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and sibt Rasulillah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam (the grandson of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam).

 

Glad tidings of his Birth

 

عن ام الفضل بنت الحارث انها دخلت على رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فقالت يا رسول الله اني رايت حلما منكرا الليلة قال وما هو قالت انه شديدة قال و ما هو قالت رايت كأن قطعة من جسدك قطعت و وضعت في حجري فقال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم رايت خيرا تلد فاطمة ان شاء الله غلاما يكون في حجرك فولدت فاطمة الحسين فكان في حجري كما قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم..

Umm al Fadl Lubabah bint al Harith reports:

I entered the presence of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and submitted, “O Messenger of Allah, I saw a strange dream last night.”

“What was it,” he enquired.

“It is a very bad dream,” I said.

“What was it,” he asked again.

“I saw as if a piece of your body was cut and placed it in my lap.”

On hearing this, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam remarked, “You have seen a wonderful dream. Fatimah will give birth, if Allah’s wills, to a boy who will be in your lap.”

Accordingly, Fatimah gave birth to Hussain and he was in my lap just as Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prophesied.[1]

 

Umm al Fadl looked after him and breastfed him together with her son, Qutham ibn al ‘Abbas.

This narration indicates to the direct link Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu has with Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam expressed the same sentiments in the following statement:

 

الحسين مني و انا منه

Hussain is part of me and I am part of him.

 

NB: From this incident we come to know that Qutham ibn al ‘Abbas and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu are foster brothers. Similarly, the other children of Umm al Fadl, i.e. Fadl, ‘Abdullah, ‘Ubaidullah, and others are also his foster brothers.

 

Date of Birth

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was born in Sha’ban 4 A.H., one year after his brother Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

NB: Many of the following incidents are common between Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma and have passed in the section dealing with the life of Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Here, in order to keep up the chronological sequence, they have been briefly repeated. The details and references could be checked up in the first section of this book.

 

Adhan, Tahnik, and Shaving of the Head

Just as the Muhaddithin and scholars of tarajim (biographies) had mentioned the initial rites carried out upon Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu, they have recorded the same about Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

 

و لما ولد اذن النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم في اذنه

When Hussain was born, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam gave adhan in his ears.[2]

 

When he was born, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam came to the house and asked regarding his name. The people of the household mentioned that they named him Harb. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam suggested that it be changed to Hussain.

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam also did the tahnik (placing of a date after chewing it or anything sweet on the palate of the new born baby) and in this way the blessed saliva of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam mixed with the saliva of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

 

Hafiz al Dhahabi has written:

جعفر صادق عن ابيه قال وزنت فاطمة شعر الحسن و الحسين و ام كلثوم فتصدقت بزنته فضة

Jafar al Sadiq narrated from his father (Muhammad al Baqir) who said:

Fatimah weighed the hair of Hassan, Hussain, and Umm Kulthum (after the head was shaved) and gave silver the equivalent of its weight in charity.[3]

 

‘Aqiqah

In the Musannaf of ‘Abdul  Razzaq a narration is recorded regarding the ‘aqiqah of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

 

عبد الرزاق عن ابن جريج قال حدثت حديثا رفع إلى عائشة أنها قالت عق رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم عن حسن شاتين و عن حسين شاتين ذبحهما يوم السابع قالوا مشقهما و أمر أن يماط عن رؤوسهما الأذى قالت قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم اذبحوا على اسم الله و قولوا بسم الله اللهم لك و إليك هذه عقيقة فلان قال و كان أهل الجاهلية يخضبون قطنة بدم العقيقة فاذا حلقوا الصبي وضعوها على رأسه فأمرهم النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم أن يجعلوا مكان الدم خلوقا يعني مشقهما وضع على رأسهما طين مشق مثل الخلوق

‘Abdul Razzaq reports from Ibn Jurayj that Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha said:

“Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam slaughtered on the seventh day after birth, two sheep for Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu and two sheep for Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu. He also instructed that their heads be shaved and perfume be applied to their heads.”

Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha narrates that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam instructed, “Slaughter in the name of Allah, and say:

 

اللهم لك و إليك هذه عقيقة فلان

O Allah! This is purely for you. This is the ‘aqiqah of so and so.”

 

The narrator explains that it was the practice of the era of ignorance that they would dip a piece of cottonwool in the blood of the slaughtered animal and place it on the head of the child after it was shaved. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam instructed that perfume be applied to the head instead of blood.[4]

 

Leader of the Youth of Jannat

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam affirmed:

الحسن و الحسين سيدا شباب اهل الجنة

Hassan and Hussain will be the leaders of the youth of Jannat.

 

Narrating ahadith

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was very young at the time of the demise of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Therefore most of his narrations are from his seniors and other Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum. However, the muhaddithin have recorded a few narrations which he narrated directly from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Some of them are reproduced below.

 

عن فاطمة بنت الحسين عن ابيها قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم للسائل حق و ان جاء على فرس

Fatimah, the daughter of Hussain narrates from her father that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam mentioned:

The beggar has a right even though he comes riding on a horse.[5]

This means that he should be given something and should not be deprived, even if he is mounted on an animal.

 

عن علي بن الحسين عن ابيه قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم من حسن اسلام المرء تركه ما لا يعنيه

Zayn al ‘Abidin narrates from Hussain that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam stated:

The beauty of a person’s Islam is that he forsakes that which does not concern him.[6]

 

Climbing on the Back of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam during Salah

‘Amr ibn Dinar narrates:

 

إن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم كان يسجد فيرقى حسين على ظهره فإذا رفع رأسه أخره فاذا سجد عاد فرقى على ظهره قال فإذا رفع رأسه أخره

(Sometimes) when Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would perform sajdah in salah, Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu would climb onto his back. When Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam rose from sajdah, he would lift him off his back. As soon as he would go into the next sajdah, Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu would climb onto his back and Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would move him off while lifting his head.[7]

 

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam tolerated these acts of childhood and did not reprimand him. This was the compassion shown by Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

 

Hussain is from me and I am from him

Ya’la ibn Murrah Thaqafi radiya Llahu ‘anhu narrates:

 

أنه قال خرجنا مع النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم و دعينا إلى طعام فإذا حسين يلعب في الطريق فأسرع النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم أمام القوم ثم بسط يديه فجعل يمر مرة ههنا ومرة ههنا يضاحكه حتى أخذه فجعل إحدى يديه في ذقنه و الأخرى في رأسه ثم عانقه فقبله ثم قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم حسين مني و أنا منه أحب الله من أحب الحسن و الحسين سبطان من الأسباط

Once we were invited together with Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam to partake of meals and on the way we passed Hussain playing in the street. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam rushed ahead of everyone and stretched out his hands to catch him. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam stepped to the right and then to the left—making him laugh—until he caught him. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam then embraced him and kissed him. He then said, “Hussain is from me and I am from him. May Allah love the one who loves Hassan and Hussain, the grandsons of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.”

 

In explaining any hadith, the Muhaddithin gather all the other ahadith which have similar meaning and examine the incidents thoroughly. The same method will be adopted here. We find in a narration in Mishkat wherein Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said regarding his uncle, ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

العباس مني و أنا منه

‘Abbas is from me and I am from him.[8]

 

One meaning is that ‘Abbas is from my family and I am from his family. So the above mentioned narration (regarding Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu) will have a similar meaning, i.e., our lineage and family is one and the same. He is from my progeny and I am from his ancestors.

Another meaning is that we are so attached and so close that we cannot be separated. The word “from me” has been used in the Noble Qur’an in the same context:

فَمَنْ شَرِبَ مِنْهُ فَلَيْسَ مَنِّيْ وَ مَنْ لَمْ يَطْعَمْهُ فَاِنَّهُ مِنِّيْ

So whoever drinks from it is not from me, and whoever does not taste it is indeed from me.[9]

 

Thus in the narrations quoted above regarding them being from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is a prophecy that they will never stray from his path. Mention is also made of their close relationship to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and the lofty status and position they enjoy in the ummah.

Note: Certain incidents were mentioned above regarding Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu which took place during the blessed lifetime of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. We will now present before the readers certain incidents which took place during the era of the three Khulafa. To locate and present every single incident is quite impossible, but we will, however, mention a few, based on the principle:

 

ما لا يدرك كله لا يترك كله

If you cannot get them all, don’t leave them all!

 

Before mentioning the details, it would be appropriate to mention the following statement of Ibn Kathir from al Bidayah wa al Nihayah.

 

ثم كان الصديق يكرمه و يعظمه وكذلك عمر و عثمان ..

Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and ‘Uthman used to honour, revere, and respect Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

 

This was due to the fact that he was the grandson of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and the son of his beloved daughter, Sayyidah Fatimah radiya Llahu ‘anha.

 

Gifts from Abu Bakr

Baladhuri has recorded in Futuh al Buldan:

 

و وجه خالد بن الوليد الى ابي بكر بالطيلسان مع مال الحيرة و بالالف درهم فوهب الطيلسان للحسين بن علي

Khalid ibn al Walid sent an expensive shawl with the wealth of Hirah (after the city was conquered) to Abu Bakr coupled with a thousand dirhams. Abu Bakr gifted the shawl to Hussain ibn ‘Ali.[10]

 

From this incident we come to know that Sayyidina Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu would present expensive and valuable gifts to the children of Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, and he fulfilled their rights. In turn, the children of Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu would accept the gifts of this noble righteous Khalifah, Sayyidina Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. There was no estrangement between them with regards to monetary matters. Rather, this incident shows the harmonious relationship they enjoyed.

 

The Status of Hussain

The following incident took place during the era of Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

 

قال يا بني لو جعلت تغشانا قال فاتيته يوما و هو خال بمعاوية و ابن عمر بالباب فرجع ابن عمر و رجعت معه فلقيني بعد فقال لم ارك فقلت يا امير المؤمنين اني جئت و انت خال بمعاوية و ابن عمر بالباب فرجع ابن عمر و رجعت معه فقال انت احق بالاذن من ابن عمر و انما انبت ما ترى في رؤوسنا الله ثم انتم

Once ‘Umar told Hussain, “O my beloved child, you should come visit us.”

Hussain says, “I came to him one day while he was in seclusion with Muawiyah and Ibn ‘Umar was at the door. Ibn ‘Umar turned back so I turned back with him.

Thereafter, he met me and asked, ‘I did not see you?’

I replied, ‘O Amir al Mu’minin, I had come but you were in seclusion with Muawiyah and Ibn ‘Umar was at the door. Ibn ‘Umar turned back so I turned back with him.’

He commented, ‘You are more deserving of acquiring permission than Ibn ‘Umar. Whatever honour we have has been bestowed by Allah, and thereafter due to your blessings.[11]

 

In this incident, we clearly see the honour Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu had for these noble personalities and how he revered and valued them. He even regarded their rights to be more than the rights of his own son.

 

Gifting a Set of Clothes

We have already mentioned how Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu got two sets of clothes sewn in Yemen for Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma. The details and references have already been quoted in the section regarding Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

Once, a number of exquisite garments arrived in Madinah Munawwarah from Yemen. Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu distributed it amongst the children of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, but there was no set suitable for Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma. Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu therefore wrote to the governor of Yemen to have two sets tailor-made for Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma. When the clothes were sewn and sent, and after Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma wore it, Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu exclaimed: “Now I am pleased.”[12]

 

Monetary Rights and Stipulating an Allowance

  1. During the era of Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, when allowances were stipulated, Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma were allotted a stipend of five thousand dirhams annually. This was the amount stipulated for a Sahabi who participated in the battle of Badr. Due to their close relationship to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam they were allocated this amount, although they did not participate in the battle of Badr.
  2. When the treasures of Kisra, the king of Persia, were brought before Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, then as per the opinion of Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, it was decided that it should be distributed by handing out handfuls. Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu began with Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma and then gave the rest of the people.
  3. Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu would give Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma large amounts from the khums which poured in from Iraq.

(Khums refers to one fifth of the booty which is distributed to specific recipients.)

NB: The references for these incidents with more detail has already passed under the section regarding Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

 

Visiting Umm Kulthum

It is an accepted fact that Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu gladly and happily handed over in marriage his daughter, Umm Kulthum, to Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu greatly appreciated it and accepted it. The details of this marriage and relationship can be found in our book, Ruhama’ Baynahum, together with references from the reliable sources of both, the Ahlus Sunnah wa al Jama’ah and the Shia.

Here what we like to mention is that Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma would visit their sister, Umm Kulthum in the house of Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

Ibn Abi Shaybah has recorded in his Musannaf:

 

عن أبي البختري عن أبي صالح أن الحسن و الحسين كانا يدخلان على أختهما أم كلثوم و هي تمشط

From Abu al Bakhtari―from Abu Salih:

Hassan and Hussain would enter upon their sister Umm Kulthum while she was combing her hair.[13]

 

Accompanying ‘Uthman for ‘Umrah

Ibn Hibban has recorded the following incident in Kitab al Thiqat:

 

ثم اعتمر عثمان في رجب و خرج معه عبد الله بن جعفر و الحسين بن علي فمرض حسين بن علي فاقام عبد الله بن جعفر عليه بالسقياو بعث الى علي يخبره بذلك فخرج علي في نفر من بني هاشم الى السقيا فلما دخلها دعا ببدنته فنحرها و حلق راسه و اقام على الحسين يمرضه  الى ان قال ثم انصرف عثمان فمر بعلي بن ابي طالب في منصرفه و هو يمرض الحسين مع جماعة من بني هاشم فقال عثمان قد اردت المقام عليه حتى تقدم و لكن الحسين عزم علي و جعل يقول امض رهطك ..

‘Uthman left to perform ‘Umrah in Rajab accompanied by ‘Abdullah ibn Jafar and Hussain ibn ‘Ali. Hussain fell ill so ‘Abdullah ibn Jafar stayed at Suqya to tend to him and sent an informant to ‘Ali to apprise him of the situation. ‘Ali immediately left with some members of the Banu Hashim to Suqya. When he arrived, he instructed that a camel be pierced, and had Hussain’s head shaved (so that he may come out of the state of ihram). He then stayed by Hussain to nurse him. After a few days, ‘Uthman returned and passed by ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib on his way back while the latter was nursing Hussain with a group of the Banu Hashim. ‘Uthman submitted, “I intended staying here to look after him until you arrive. However, Hussain told me with determination to continue saying, ‘Proceed with your group.’”[14]

 

This incident clearly indicates that the relationship between Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu and Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was a relationship of love and respect. These august personalities used to travel together to perform deeds like ‘Umrah etc. They shared in all other aspects of travelling, like eating, stopping over, performing salah, etc. Good relations existed between them. There was no sort of aversion at all for each other.

 

Participation in Battles

During the era of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu took full part in the jihad expeditions and other religious services. Under the section regarding Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu we have mentioned in detail how they participated in jihad. Here, as a reminder, we will briefly recap what was said.

  • In 26 A.H. the Battle of Tripoli took place. The leader was ‘Abdullah ibn Sa’d ibn Abi Sarh. Many areas in Africa were conquered. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu had joined this army.
  • In 30 A.H. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu took part in the military expeditions in Khorasan, Tabristan, Jurjan and other areas. These expeditions were under the leadership of Sa’id ibn al ‘As Umawi. Many lands were conquered and Islam spread extensively in these areas.

 

A Special Gift

When Khorasan was conquered, a special incident occurred which is mentioned with great importance in the books of the Shia. Two daughters of Yazdegerd ibn Shahriyar were taken as prisoners. Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu gave one of them to Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu and the other to Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu. This is an important event in the life of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu, which we already mentioned in the section regarding Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu, together with the relevant references from the books of the Shia.

 

Defending ‘Uthman when he was besieged

The incidents mentioned above took place during the era of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Towards the end of his era, just before he was martyred, Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma also put forward their services in defending him.

Towards the end of Dhu al Qa’dah 35 A.H., the rebels laid siege to the house of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. These rebels were hell bent on causing mischief and strife. Many Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum tried to protect Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma also took part fully in trying to protect the Khalifah.

Hereunder we will reproduce some texts which shed light on the extent of their services rendered at that critical juncture.

 

عن محمد بن سيرين قال انطلق الحسن و الحسين و ابن عمر و ابن الزبير و مروان كلهم شاك في السلاح حتى دخلوا الدار فقال عثمان أعزم عليكم لما رجعتم فوضعتم أسلحتكم و لزمتم بيوتكم

Muhammad ibn Sirin reports:

Hassan, Hussain, ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar, ‘Abdullah ibn Zubair, and Marwan came to the house of ‘Uthman, armed with their weapons to defend him. ‘Uthman told them: “I entreat you on oath to return, lay down your weapons, and remain in your homes.”[15]

 

Baladhuri has recorded the following in Ansab al Ashraf:

 

و قال للحسن و الحسين اذهبا بسيوفكما حتى تقوما على باب عثمان فلا تدعا احدا يصل اليه و بعث الزبير ابنه عبد الله وبعث طلحة ابنه   و بعث عدة من اصحاب النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم ابناءهم ليمنعوا الناس الدخول على عثمان

‘Ali instructed Hassan and Hussain, “Go with your swords and stand at the door of ‘Uthman allowing no one to get to him.”

Similarly, Zubair sent his son ‘Abdullah, Talhah sent his son, and many other Sahabah also sent their sons to prevent the rebels from entering ‘Uthman’s house.”[16]

 

Ibn Kathir has written in al Bidayah wa al Nihayah:

 

كان الحصار مستمرا من أواخر ذي القعدة إلى يوم الجمعة الثامن عشر ذي الحجة سنة ٣٥ه للذين عنده في الدار من المهاجرين و الانصار … فيهم عبد الله بن عمر و عبد الله بن الزبير و الحسن و الحسين و مروان و أبو هريرة و خلق من مواليه

The siege lasted from the end of Dhu al Qa’dah till Friday the 18 of Dhu al Hijjah 35 A.H. The Muhajirin and Ansar were at the home of ‘Uthman (to defend him). Amongst them were ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar, ‘Abdullah ibn Zubair, Hassan, Hussain, Marwan, and Abu Hurairah and a number of his servants and slaves.[17]

 

The afore-mentioned quotations establish that Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu, like the other Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, left no stone unturned in trying to defend and protect Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu. It also brings to light the fact that the good relationship between Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu lasted right up to the end of the former’s life.

 

The Battle of Jamal

This took place in Jumada al Ukhra 36 A.H. We have already mentioned the details of this battle in our book Sirat Sayyidina ‘Ali al Murtada.

Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma supported their father on this occasion. In this book under the section regarding Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu we had mentioned the following points:

  1. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was the leader of the left wing of the army.
  2. Marwan ibn al Hakam was captured in this battle. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu participated in the efforts for him to be released and in interceding on his behalf before Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
  3. When Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha was returning after the battle, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was amongst those who accompanied her to see her off and bid her farewell.

 

Consideration for Hussain in the Battle of Siffin

After The Battle of Jamal, The Battle of Siffin took place, which was a major event. We already discussed it in our book Sirat Sayyidina ‘Ali al Murtada.

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu joined his father here as well.

There were certain very heavy moments during this battle. On one such occasion, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu came face to face with Zabarqan ibn Aslam, who was an elderly Sahabi fighting on the opposite side. When he saw Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu he told him: Oh my son! Please move away from here. I had seen Sayyidina Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam once returning from Quba whilst you were walking in front of him. I do not want to meet Sayyidina Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam on the day of Qiyamah with your blood on my hands.

 

عن مجاهد عن ابي وائل قال برز الحسين بن علي يوم صفين فذكر قصة فيها فقال له الزبرقان بن اسلم انصرف يا بني فلقد رايت رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم مقبلا من ناحية قباء و انت قدامه فما كنت لالقى رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم بدمك

Mujahid ibn Abi Wa’il reports:

Hussain ibn ‘Ali came out on the Day of Siffin into the thick of battle. He mentioned the entire incident. Part of the incident is as follows: Zabarqan ibn Aslam (a senior Sahabi fighting on the opposite side) told him, “Move away, O my beloved son. Certainly, I saw Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam coming from the direction of Quba’ and you were in front of him. I do not desire to meet Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam with your blood on my hands.”[18]

 

From this incident we gather that is such trying moments too, the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum took into consideration the respect and honour for the offspring of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

 

Battle against the Khawarij

After the Battles of Jamal and Siffin, another important battle took place, which was against the Khawarij. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu participated in this battle as well.

 

Support for Hassan

After the martyrdom of Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, when Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu became the Khalifah, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu supported him fully right up until the reconciliation between him and Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Thereafter, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu together with his brother returned to Madinah Munawwarah and took up residence there.

Ibn Hajar al ‘Asqalani sums this up in the following words:

 

و كانت اقامة الحسين بالمدينة الى ان خرج مع ابيه الى الكوفة فشهد معه الجمل ثم صفين ثم قتال الخوارج و بقي معه الى ان قتل ثم مع اخيه الى ان اسلم الامر الى معاوية فتحول مع اخيه الى المدينة و استمر بها الى ان مات معاوية

Hussain lived in Madinah until he left with his father to Kufah. He participated with him in al Jamal, then Siffin, and then the Battle against the Khawarij. He remained at his side until he was martyred. He then supported his brother until he handed over the matter to Muawiyah. He then returned with his brother to Madinah where he remained until Muawiyah passed away.[19]

 

The Final Advices of ‘Ali

In Ramadan 40 A.H. one of the Khawarij, ‘Abdul Rahman ibn Muljim, attacked Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and injured him, which proved fatal after three days. On his deathbed, Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu advised his sons to practice on the Qur’an and the Sunnah, to adopt taqwa, etc.[20]

 

Participating in the Ghusl, Kafan and Burial of ‘Ali

Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma, together with other relatives and family members carried out the ghusl etc., and performed the Salat al Janazah

 

Assisting Amir Muawiyah

After the martyrdom of Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, the people of Hijaz and Iraq pledged allegiance to Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu stood by his brother’s side and assisted him through the various stages he encountered. The details have been mentioned in the section discussing the events and life of Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

After about 6 months, in Rabi’ al Awwal or Jumada al Ula 41 A.H., when Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu, due to the need of the situation, reconciled with Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu did not oppose him, but rather sided with him. Although the historians have mentioned various narrations regarding his stance, this is an established fact that both the brothers pledged allegiance to Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu and reconciled. These are undisputed and established historic facts.

After handing over the Caliphate, both brothers returned from Kufah and took up residence in Madinah Munawwarah. Now we will present some of the incidents which occurred when Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu moved back to Madinah Munawwarah.

 

The Sahabah respecting and honouring Hussain

The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum used to accord the utmost respect to the offspring and relatives of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and regarded this as an honour. They considered the family of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam superior to all other tribes.

 

قال علي بن محمد عن حماد بن سلمة عن ابي المهزم قال كنا مع ابي هريرة في جنازة فلما رجعنا اعيا الحسين فقعد فجلس ابو هريرة ينفض التراب عن قدميه بثوبه فقال له الحسين انت يا ابا هريرة تفعل هذا قال دعني منك فلو يعلم الناس منك ما ما اعلم لحملوك على عواتقهم

‘Ali ibn Muhammad narrates―from Hammad ibn Salamah―from Abu al Mahzam who said:

We were with Abu Hurairah at a janazah. While we were returning, Hussain was exhausted so he sat down. Abu Hurairah sat and began wiping sand of his feet using his clothes. Hussain said to him in surprise, “You, O Abu Hurairah, are doing this?”

Abu Hurairah responded, “Leave me to continue. Had the people known your virtue and status as I know it, they would had carried you on their shoulders.[21]

 

قال ابو المهزم كنا مع جنازة امراة و معنا ابو هريرة فجيء بجنازة رجل فجعله بينه و بين المراة فصلى عليها فلما اقبلنا اعيا الحسين فقعد في الطريق فجعل ابو هريرة ينفض التراب عن قدميه بطرف ثوبه فقال الحسين يا ابا هريرة و انت تفعل هذا قال ابو هريرة دعني فوالله لو يعلم الناس منك ما اعلم لحملوك على رقابهم

Abu al Mahzam says:

We were following the janazah of a woman and Abu Hurairah was with us. A man’s bier was brought and he placed it between himself and the woman’s bier. He then performed Salat al Janazah upon them. As we were returning, Hussain felt tired so he said down on the roadside. Abu Hurairah began dusting his feet with his clothes. Hussain said, “Abu Hurairah, you are doing this?”

Abu Hurairah replied, “Leave me. By Allah, Had the people known your virtue and status as I know it, they would had carried you on their shoulders.[22]

 

ثم قدمت دابة الحسن فامسك له ابن عباس بالركاب و سوى عليه ثم جيء بدابة الحسين فامسك له ابن عباس بالركاب و سوى عليه فلما مضيا قلت انت اكبر منهما تمسك لهما و تسوي عليهما فقال يا لكع اتدري من هذان هذان ابنا رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم اوليس هذا مما انعم الله علي به ان امسك لهما و اسوي لهما

Then a riding animal was brought for Hassan. Ibn ‘Abbas held the stirrup and respectfully allowed Hassan to mount it. Then Hussain’s animal was brought and Ibn ‘Abbas did the same. After they had departed someone asked Ibn ‘Abbas, “You are elder than them and yet you held their stirrups and allowed them to mount?” He replied, “O Luka’! Do you not know who these two august personalities are? They are the children of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. This is a great favour of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala upon me that he allowed me to hold their stirrup for them and let them mount.”[23]

 

يونس بن ابي اسحاق عن العيزار بن حريث قال بينما عمرو بن العلص في ظل الكعبة اذ راى الحسين فقال هذا احب اهل الارض الى اهل السماء اليوم

Yunus ibn Abi Ishaq―from al ‘Ayzar ibn Hurayth who said:

Once ‘Amr ibn al ‘As was sitting in the shade of the Ka’bah when he spotted Hussain. Seeing him, he commented, “At this moment, this is the most beloved of the inhabitants of the earth to the inhabitants of the sky.”[24]

 

From this incident we see how the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum acknowledged the virtue and status of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu and regarded him as the beloved.

 

A similar incident concerning Sayyidina Nu’man ibn Bashir will soon be mentioned under the heading fiqhi masaʾil.

 

Fulfilling the Needs of Others

As per the custom of his family, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was always looking for opportunities to fulfill the needs of the poor and needy.

 

Once a beggar was walking through the alleys of Madinah when he came to the door of Hussain. He knocked on the door and expressed his need in the form of poetry. Hussain was performing salah at the time. He shortened his salah and went out. He noticed the effects of poverty and need on the beggar. He went back inside, called for his slave, Qunbur, and asked him: “How much do we have left for our expenses?”

“200 dirhams,” replied Qunbur, “which you have instructed me to distribute amongst your family members.”

Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu told him to bring the dirhams saying “This man has a greater right to it than then.” He then took the dirhams and handed it over to the beggar.[25]

 

There are plenty of such incidents found in the life of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Fulfilling the needs of others was part of their nature.

 

Narrating of Ahadith

In Islam, reporting the ahadith of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is an act of great reward. To attain this great reward, we find that the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum passed onto the Ummah the vast treasures of ahadith we have by us today.

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was very young during the days of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, yet he has narrated a few of his statements, which his relatives and friends passed on to the Ummah. Besides this, the Muhaddithin have noted:

 

و روى الحسين عن ابيه و امه و خاله هند بن ابي هالة و عن عمر  و روى عنه اخوه الحسن و بنوه علي زين العابدين و فاطمة وسكينة

Hussain narrated from his father, his mother, his uncle Hind ibn Abi Halah and ‘Umar. His brother Hassan and his children ‘Ali Zayn al ‘Abidin, Fatimah, and Sakinah narrated from him.[26]

 

Safi al Din Khazraji has recorded in Khulasat Tahdhib Tahdhib al Kamal:

 

و روى عن جده ثمانية احاديث و عن ابيه و امه و عمر

He narrated 8 ahadith from his grandfather Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and from his father, mother, and ‘Umar.[27]

 

Hafiz al Dhahabi writes:

 

حدثه عنه اي الحسين ولده علي و فاطمة و عبيد بن حنين و همام الفرزدق و عكرمة والشعبي و طلحة العقيلي و ابن اخيه زيد بن الحسن و حفيده محمد بن علي الباقر و لم يدركه و بنته سكينة و آخرون

Those who narrated from Hussain were:

His son ‘Ali, Fatimah (his daughter), ‘Ubaid ibn Hunayn, Hammam al Farazdaq, ‘Ikrimah, al Sha’bi, Talhah al ‘Uqayli, his nephew Zaid ibn al Hassan, his grandson Muhammad ibn ‘Ali al Baqir―but he did not meet him, his daughter Sakinah, and others.[28]

 

Ibn ‘Abdul Barr has recorded the following hadith which was narrated by Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam:

من حسن اسلام المرء تركه ما لا يعنيه

The beauty of a person’s Islam is that he forsakes that which does not concern him.[29]

 

 

Conducting Lessons in Masjid al Nabawi

Ibn ‘Asakir has written: that once Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu sent a Qurashi man for some work to Masjid al Nabawi.

 

و قال معاوية لرجل من قريش اذا دخلت مسجد رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فرايت حلقة فيها قوم كأن على رؤوسهم الطير فتلك حلقة ابي عبد الله موتزرا الى انصاف ساقيه

He told the Qurashi man, “When you enter the Masjid of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and see a circle of students, (wherein there is such peace and tranquility) as if birds are perched on their heads, then that is the circle of Abu ‘Abdullah (Hussain). Moreover, his lower garment will reach half his shin.”[30]

 

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu used to conduct these gatherings in Masjid al Nabawi as is the practice of the friends of Allah who conduct such gatherings in order to explain Din to the people. Its salient feature was the respect and manners displayed. Tranquility and peace would descend upon them.

This action of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu also serves as proof for the validity of the spiritual and academic circles held over the centuries by the latter generations.

From this incident we also come to know that Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was particular in emulating the Sunnah of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in his dressing. His lower garment reached till the middle of the calf. This is the Sunnah method.

 

Performing Salah behind the Khalifas

To perform salah with jama’ah is wajib. The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum and the elders of the Ummah were always particular about performing their five daily salah with jama’ah. Without any valid excuse, they never missed salah with jama’ah.

Both, the scholars of the Ahlus Sunnah wa al Jama’ah and the Shia have written that Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma would perform their salah with jama’ah in Masjid al Nabawi behind the Khalifah of the time.

Ibn Sa’d has quoted the statement of Imam al Baqir rahimahu Llah:

 

قال انا اصلي خلفهم في غير تقية و اشهد على  على بن الحسين انه كان يصلي خلفهم في غير تقية

I perform salah behind them (i.e. the Khalifas) without any Taqiyyah. And I bear witness that ‘Ali ibn al Hussain (my father) would perform salah behind them without any Taqiyyah.[31]

 

This has already been discussed in detail under the section dealing with the life of Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Here we wish to suffice on quoting the reliable sources and books of the Shia which prove this point.

The Shia scholars have narrated:

 

عن موسى بن جعفر عن ابيه قال كان الحسن و الحسين يصليان خلف مروان بن الحكم فقالوا لاحدهما ما كان ابوك يصلي اذا رجع الى البيت فقال لا والله ما كان يزيد على صلاة

Musa ibn Jafar al Sadiq narrates from his father “Hassan ibn ‘Ali and Hussain would perform salah behind Marwan ibn al Hakam.”

They asked him: “Would your father repeat that salah upon returning home?”

He replied: “No, by Allah. He would not perform more than one salah (i.e. he would not repeat it).”[32]

 

Recitation of the Glorious Qur’an

Recitation of the glorious Qur’an is a meritorious act of worship. The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum would recite Qur’an day and night, especially in the blessed month of Ramadan. It was part of their daily routine. They never skipped it.

Hafiz al Dhahabi has quoted the statement of al Sha’bi rahimahu Llah:

 

رايت الحسين يختم في شهر رمضان

I saw Hussain reciting completing the glorious Qur’an in Ramadan.[33]

 

Good Deeds

The Ummah has learnt how to make ‘ibadah from the family of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. All their time was spent in good deeds.

The Muhaddithin and historians have written that Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu used to be continuously involved in ‘ibadah. He used to perform excessive salah. Most of the time he used to fast. He spent and gave charity generously. And he performed Hajj on foot on a number of occasions.

Ibn Athir has written in Usd al Ghabah (2/40)

 

و كان الحسين فاضلا كثير الصوم و الصلاة و الحج والصدقة و افعال الخير جميعها

Hussain was devout and performed abundant salah, Hajj, fasting, charity, and all good deeds.[34]

 

Hajj

Below we will mention a little details about his Hajj.

 

و حدث عن ابيه اي محمد باقر ايضا ان الحسين بن علي حج ماشيا خمسا و عشرين حجة و نجائبه تقاد معه و قد روي ذلك عن الحسن بن علي

He (Jafar al Sadiq) narrates from his father Muhammad al Baqir as well that Hussain ibn ‘Ali performed twenty five Hajj on foot, although he had by him good riding animals, which were driven along with him. The same was been narrated about Hassan ibn ‘Ali.[35]

 

Siqayat al Hajj (Providing drinking water to the Hujjaj)

‘Abdul Razzaq narrates in his Musannaf that in those days, between the al hajar al aswad and the zam zam well, there was a pond which was filled with zam zam water. The hujjaj used to be given water from this pond.

 

قال خبرني عبد الله بن ابي يزيد عن حسين بن علي بن ابي طالب قال و رايته في حوض زمزم الذي ليسقى الحاج فيه و الحوض يومئذ بين الركن و الزمزم فاقام المؤذن بالصلاة فلما قال قد قامت الصلاة قام حسين و ذلك بعد وفاة معاوية ..

‘Abdullah ibn Abi Yazid informed me:

I saw Hussain ibn ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib at the pond of zam zam giving the pilgrims water to drink. The pond was between the rukn and the zam zam well in those days. While he was busy, the Mu’adhin called out the iqamah. When he reached qad qamat al salah, Hussain stood up (in the staff to join the salah). This was after the demise of Muawiyah.[36]

 

These personalities, notwithstanding their great and lofty status, never found it below their dignity to join in such acts of virtue. They kept up the good deeds and practices of the Banu Hashim.

 

Return from Muzdalifah

 

عن عكرمة قال افضت مع الحسين بن علي من المزدلفة فلم ازل اسمعه يلبي حتى رمى جمرة العقبة فسالته فقال افضت مع ابي من المزدلفة فلم ازل اسمعه يلبي حتى رمى جمرة العقبة  فسالته فقال افضت مع رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم فلم ازل اسمعه يلبي حتى رمى جمرة العقبة

‘Ikrimah relates:

Once, I returned with Hussain ibn ‘Ali from Muzdalifah. I heard him repeating the talbiyah continuously until he pelted jamrat al ‘aqabah. I enquired from him the reason to which he replied, “I returned with my father from Muzdalifah and I heard him repeating the talbiyah continuously until he pelted jamrat al ‘aqabah. I asked him about this to which he replied that he returned with Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and heard him reciting the talbiyah until he pelted jamrat al ‘aqabah.[37]

 

Istilam of the Corners of the Ka’bah

 

اخبرنا عبد الرزاق عن ابن عيينة عن عمار الدهني عن ابي سعيد البكري ان الحسن و الحسين او احدهما طاف بعد العصر و استلم الاركان كلها

‘Abdul Razzaq informed us―from Ibn ‘Uyaynah―from ‘Ammar al Duhni― from Abu Sa’id al Bakri:

Hassan, Hussain, or one of them performed tawaf after ‘Asr and made istilam (touched) of all of the corners (of the Ka’bah).[38]

 

Performing Two Rak’at in the Ka’bah

 

عبد الرزاق عن الثوري قال اخبرني يزيد عن سالم بن ابي الجعد ان محمد ابن الحنفية دخل الكعبة فصلى في كل زاوية ركعتين  قال الثوري و اخبرني محمد بن جعفر عن ابيه ان الحسين بن علي دخل الكعبة فصلى ركعتين

‘Abdul Razzaq―from al Thawri who said that―Yazid informed me―from Salim ibn Abi al Ja’d:

Muhammad ibn al Hanafiyyah entered the Ka’bah and performed two rak’at of salah in all four corners.

Al Thawri said: Muhammad ibn Jafar informed me―from his father:

Hussain ibn ‘Ali entered the Ka’bah and performed two rak’at therein.[39]

 

These were few aspects concerning the Hajj of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

 

Applying Henna

With regards to applying henna to the head, there are various narrations found. From some we understand that it is permissible and from others it seems to be makruh (reprehensible). Some ahadith and historic narrations mention that Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu used to apply henna and also katm (henna which looks more blackish).

Ibn Abi Shaybah has recorded:

عن ابي اسحاق عن العيزار بن حريث قال كان الحسين بن علي يخضب بالحناء و الكتم

From Abu Ishaq―al ‘Ayzar ibn Hurayth:

Hussain ibn ‘Ali would dye his hair with henna and katm.[40]

 

Abu Yusuf Ya’qub al Basawi has recorded in his Kitab al Marifah wa al Tarikh:

 

عن العرب بن كعب الازدي قال رايت الحسين بن علي واقفا على برذون ابيض و قد خضب لحيته و راسه بالوسمة

‘Arab ibn Ka’b al Azdi says:

I saw Hussain ibn ‘Ali on a white Turkish horse and his beard and head was dyed with wasmah.[41]

 

Islamic Rulings

People would ask religious rulings from Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu and he would respond to their questions. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu was blessed with deep insight and understanding of Islamic rulings. Here we will mention just a few, so we can get a glimpse of his expertise in jurisprudence.

 

عن بشر بن غالب قال سئل الحسين بن علي متى يجب السهم للمولود قال اذا استهل يريد به نصيبه من الميراث فانه انما يستحق ذلك اذا انفصل حيا و انما يعلم ذلك بالاستهلال

Bishr ibn Ghalib reports:

Hussain ibn ‘Ali was questioned about when is a new born entitled to its share of inheritance. He replied, “When it cries.”

It is only entitled to its share if it was born alive. And this can only be determined by its crying.[42]

 

و سئل عن فكاك الاسير فقال على الارض التي يقاتل عنها يعني من خراج تلك الارض  لانه قبل الاسر كان يذب عن اهل تلك الارض فهم اولى بفكاكه ليكون الغرم بمقابلة الغنم و انما يفك  الخراج لان معد لنوائب المسلمين و سد خلة المحتاجين منهم و هذا من جملة ذلك

He was asked about who is responsible of paying the ransom of the prisoners of war to which he replied, “From the land which was being protected.” Meaning from the kharaj (land tax) of that land since before being taken captive, it was used to defend the inhabitants of that land. Hence, they are more deserving to be released with it so that harm is in lieu of benefit. The kharaj will be used to pay the ransom it is for the benefit of the Muslims and to end the poverty of the needy among them. Ransoming is included therein.[43]

 

‘Allamah Haythami has recorded in Majma’ al Zawa’id:

 

قال خرج الحسين و هو يريد ارضه التي بظاهر الحرة و نحن نمشي اذ ادركنا النعمان بن بشير على بغلة فنزل فقربها الى الحسين فقال اركب يا ابا عبد الله فكره ذلك فلم يزل كذلك حتى اقسم النعمان عليه حتى اطاع الحسين بالركوب  قال اذا قسمت فقد كلفتني ما اكره فاركب على صدر دابتك  فاردفك فاني سمعت فاطمة بنت محمد صلى الله عليه و سلم تقول قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم الرجل احق بصدر دابته و صدر فراشه والصلاة في منزله الا ما يجمع الناس  عليه فقال النعمان صدقت بنت رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم سمعت ابي بشيرا يقول كما قالت فاطمة و قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم الا من اذن فركب

Hussain left on his way to his land situated behind Harrah. We were walking when we came across Nu’man ibn Bashir on a mule. He dismounted and presented the animal to Hussain saying, “Mount, O Abu ‘Abdullah.”

Hussain initially refused, but after persisting and asking him on oath, Hussain acceded to his request to mount.

He commented, “Now that you have taken an oath, you have forced me to do what I disliked. So I will sit at the back of your animal behind you for I have heard Fatimah bint Muhammad saying that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam stated, ‘The owner has more right to the front of his animal, the main seat of his resting place, and to lead the salah in his house except if people overpower him.’”

Nu’man remarked, “The daughter of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has spoken the truth. I heard my father Bashir relating just what Fatimah related. And Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam added, ‘Except who he permits.’”

Thereafter, Hussain mounted.

 

Al Tabarani narrated it.[44]

 

NB: ‘Allamah Haythami has recorded several narrations, each of them being classified as weak. However, due to there being few weak narrations, they lend strength to each other and therefore strengthen the subject matter under discussion. ‘Allamah Haythami has also recorded some similar narrations from Imam Ahmed and Tabarani regarding which he wrote, “All the narrators are reliable.” In this case, the narration is quite acceptable.

 

Maintaining the Reconciliation

As was previously mentioned, Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu together with Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu reconciled with Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu in Rabi’ al Akhir or Jumada al Ula 41 A.H. Both even pledged allegiance to Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. This is an undisputed and acceptable fact according to the Ahlus Sunnah wa al Jama’ah. I have mentioned the details and references in my book Mas’alah Aqriba’ Nawazi[45] and in Sirat Hadrat Amir Muawiyah [46].

Here I want to point out that the Shia themselves have mentioned in books they consider reliable that both Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma pledged allegiance to Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu after the reconciliation.

It is written in Rijal al Kashshi and Bihar al Anwar:

 

فقال يا حسن قم فبايع فقام فبايع ثم قال للحسين قم فبايع فقام فبايع ثم قال يا قيس قم فبايع فالتفت الى الحسين عليه السلام ينظر ما يامره فقال يا قيس انه امامي

Muawiyah said, “O Hassan! Stand up and pledge allegiance.” He stood up and pledged his allegiance.

He then said to Hussain, “Stand up and pledge allegiance.” He stood up and pledged allegiance.

He then said, “O Qais, stand up and pledge allegiance.”

I looked towards Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu to see what he commands me. He said, “O Qais, he is my leader.”[47]

 

Abu Jafar al Tusi also recorded this in his al Amali:

الا واني قد بايعت هذا واشار بيده الى معاوية

Hassan pointed with his hand in the direction of Muawiyah and said: “Behold! I have pledged allegiance to him.”[48]

 

After the reconciliation took place, the people of Iraq tried to incite Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu to go against the agreement and pact that was made, and to rebel against Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. When this news reached Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu in Sham, he wrote a letter to Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu, the crux of which is:

 

ان من اعطى الله صفقة يمينه و عهده لجدير بالوفاء و قد انبئت ان قوما من اهل الكوفة قد دعوك الى الشقاق و اهل العراق قد جربت قد افسدوا على ابيك و اخيك فاتق الله و اذكر الميثاق   الخ

He who has made an agreement and pact for the sake of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala, it is binding on him to stand by it and fulfill it. The news has reached me that some people of Kufah are inciting you to break the agreement and cause a split. You have experience with the people of Iraq, how they dealt unpleasantly with your father and brother. Therefore, fear Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala and remember the pact and agreement which was made (and remain firm on it).

 

When this letter reached Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu, replied in writing to Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, the crux of which is:

 

اتاني كتابك و انا بغير الذي بلغك جدير و الحسنات لا يهدي لها الا الله و ما اردت لك محاربة و لا عليك خلافا  الخ

Your letter has reached me. The news which has reached you regarding me, I am not in a position to do such. And without the guidance of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala, none can be guided towards goodness. I have absolutely no intention of rebelling against you, nor of turning against you.[49]

 

The senior Shia scholars have also recorded this in their famous works. They have also added that Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu sent a reply to the people of Iraq. The famous Shia mujtahid, Sheikh Mufid has written in al Irshad:

 

لما مات الحسن عليه السلام تحركت الشيعة بالعراق و كتبوا الى الحسين عليه السلام في خلع معاوية و البيعة له فامتنع عليهم و ذكر ان بينه و بين معاوية عهدا و عقدا لا يجوز له نقضه حتى تمضي المدة

When Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu passed away, the Shia of Iraq spurred into action and wrote to Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu encouraging him to break his bay’ah with Muawiyah. He wrote back to them telling them that there has been an agreement between himself and Muawiyah and that it would not be permissible break it until it expires (i.e. Muawiyah’s Caliphate comes to an end).[50]

 

Al Dinawari, another Shia cleric, has quoted the reply of Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu to those who were inciting him to rebel against Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

انا قد بايعنا و عاهدنا و لا سبيل الى نقض بيعتنا

We have pledged allegiance and entered into a pact. There is no way to break our allegiance.[51]

 

In short, the agreement between Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu and Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu was intact, and after pledging allegiance to Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu maintained it and did not break away. This continued right until the demise of Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.

This same Shia scholar and historian, al Dinawari has also written in Akhbar al Tiwal:

 

قالوا و لم ير الحسن ولا الحسين طول حياة معاوية منه سوء في انفسهما و لا مكروها  و لا قطع عنهما شيئا مما كان شرط لهما و لا تغير لهما عن بر

Neither Hassan nor Hussain had any bad experience with Muawiyah until the end of his life, nor did they have distasteful situations with him, nor did he break any condition he made with them, nor did he change showing generosity towards them.[52]

 

In short, both the historians of the Ahlus Sunnah wa al Jama’ah and the senior scholars of the Shia have expressly mentioned that all the political differences between Sayyidina Hassan and Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma and Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu were sorted out, and they maintained good relations thereafter. All conditions laid down and agreed upon were fulfilled and were not changed in the least bit. Both parties stuck to the agreement right until the end.

 

Participation in the Battle of Constantinople

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu happily took part in the campaigns and expeditions carried out during the Caliphate of Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. The Battle of Constantinople was a famous battle which took place in 51 A.H. or 49 A.H. according to others. Many senior Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum participated in this epic battle. Special mention has been made of Sayyidina Abu Ayub al Ansari radiya Llahu ‘anhu, who despite his old age, participated. During the campaign he fell ill and passed away. The historians have recorded this incident with great detail. We have also mentioned some details of the expedition in our book Sirat Hadrat Amir Muawiyah [53].

The general of this army was Yazid ibn Muawiyah. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala had blessed the Muslims with victory against the Romans. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had also given glad tidings that those who participate in this battle are forgiven. Therefore, many senior Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum felt it an honour to take part.

A historian writes:

 

الحسين بن علي بن ابي طالب عليهما السلام سبط رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم و ريحانته من الدنيا وفد على معاوية و توجه غازيا الى القسطنطنية في الجيش الذي كان اميره يزيد بن معاوية

Hussain ibn ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhuma, the grandson of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and his sweet smelling flower would pay annual visits to Muawiyah. He went out as a warrior towards Constantinople in the army led by Yazid ibn Muawiyah.[54]

 

Hafiz Ibn Kathir recorded in al Bidayah wa al Nihayah:

 

و قد كان في الجيش الذين غزوا القسطنطنية مع ابن معاوية يزيد في سنة احدى و خمسين

He participated in the army which attacked Constantinople with Muawiyah’s son Yazid in the year 51 A.H.[55]

 

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu, who was the grandson of Sayyidina Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and his ‘perfume’, used to pay a special annual visit to Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu used to honour him and present gifts to him, which Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu used to accept. In the year 51 A.H. when the Battle of Constantinople took place under the leadership of Yazid ibn Muawiyah, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu along with other Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum participated.

 

Gifts and Stipends

Ibn Kathir has written in al Bidayah wa al Nihayah:

 

فلما استقرت الخلافة لمعاوية كان الحسين يتردد اليه مع اخيه الحسن فيكرمهما معاوية اكراما زائدا و يقول لهما مرحبا و اهلا و سهلا و يعطيهما عطاء جزيلا و قد اطلق لهما في يوم واحدمائتي الف يعني في بعض الايام

After the Caliphate settled in favour of Muawiyah, Hussain would visit him with his brother Hassan. Muawiyah would honour them extensively and welcome them saying, “Welcome, feel at home and at ease!” He would give them expensive gifts. On one occasion he gave them 200 000 dirhams.[56]

 

Ibn ‘Asakir has recorded the same in Tarikh Dimashq:

 

قال عبد الله بن بريدة دخل الحسن و الحسين على معاوية فامر لهما في وقته بمئتي الف درهم

‘Abdullah ibn Buraydah said, “Hassan and Hussain visited Muawiyah who ordered that they be favoured with 200 000 dirhams.”[57]

 

These gifts were besides the annual stipend allocated to Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma. The following narration sheds light on the annual stipend they used to receive timeously.

Sheikh ‘Ali ibn ‘Uthman Ghaznawi Hajwiri Lahori (d. 456 A.H.) has written in Kashf al Mahjub:

 

Once a beggar approached Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu saying: “O grandson of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam! I am a poor person with a family to look after. Kindly give me some food.”

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu told him: “Wait a while. My allowance will reach me soon. When I receive it I will hand it over to you.”

After a short while, a messenger from Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu arrived with five bags (each bag containing 1000 gold coins). The messenger told Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu that Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu apologizes that he had sent such a small amount, but that he should please accept it.

Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu accepted it, handed it over to the beggar, and asked his apologies for giving him such a small amount.[58]

 

From these incidents we gather that Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu showed his appreciation to Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu, acknowledged his status, and showed great consideration for his rights.

 

Properties and Land in the Vicinity of Madinah Munawwarah

Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu owned many springs on the outskirts of Madinah Munawwarah which were known as sadaqat. Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu made gave these springs as waqf (endowment) for his family.

 

و كانت البغيبغات مما عمل علي و تصدق به فلم تزل في صدقاته حتى اعطاها حسين بن علي عبد الله بن جعفر بن ابي طالب ياكل ثمرها و يستعين بها على دينه و مؤونته   فباع عبد الله تلك العيون من معاوية

Al bughaybaghat was one of these springs which ‘Ali worked on and gave in charity. It remained among his sadaqat until Hussain ibn ‘Ali gifted it to ‘Abdullah ibn Jafar ibn Abi Talib to eat of its fruit and use it as a means of support for his religion and expenses. Later on, ‘Abdullah sold these springs to Muawiyah.[59]

 

و كان له ايضا صدقات بالمدينة الفقيرين بالعالية و بئر الملك بقناة و الادبية بالضم فسمعت ان حسنا ،او حسينا، بن علي باع ذلك كله فيما كان من حربهم فتلك الاموال اليوم متفرقة في ايدي الناس شتى

From the lands owned by ‘Ali was al Faqirayn in al ‘Aliyah, Bi’r al Milk in Qanah and al Adabiyyah in Damm. I heard that Hassan and Hussain ibn ‘Ali later on sold them all for their military expenses. These pieces of land are today in the hands of various people.[60]

 

Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu also owned a spring called ‘Ayn Abi Nayzar which was situated close to the Baqi’ area, and was for the general benefit of the people. Sayyidina ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu however, did stipulate that should Sayyidina Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu or Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu need it, they could utilize it. After some time, during the days of Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu happened to be in a lot of debt. When Sayyidina Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu heard of this, he sent 200 000 gold coins, offering it to Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu in exchange for that spring. Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu however, did not want to sell it, and preferred to keep it for the benefit of the general public.

Ibn Hisham says:

فركب الحسين دين فحمل اليه معاوية بعين ابي نيزر مائتي الف دينار فابى ان يبيع

Hussain was burdened with debts. So Muawiyah sent 200 000 gold coins in exchange for ‘Ayn Abi Nayzar. However, Hussain refused to sell it.[61]

 

عين تحنس كانت بالمدينة للحسين بن علي استنبطها غلام له يقال له تحنس و باعها علي بن الحسين من الوليد بن عقبة بن ابي سفيان بسبعين الف دينار قضى بها دين ابيه الحسين اذ قتل و عليه هذا القدر

The spring of Tahannus was in the vicinity of Madinah and belonged to Hussain ibn ‘Ali. His slave who dug it was called Tahannus. ‘Ali ibn al Hussain (his son) sold it to Walid ibn ‘Uqbah ibn Abi Sufyan for 70 000 gold coins in order to settle the debts of his father after he was martyred. He owed this amount.[62]

 

From the above we come to know that Sayyidina Hassan and Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhuma owned many lands around Madinah Munawwarah. The income of these properties would come to them, and in this way they were, by the grace of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala, financially well off. We also understand that Sayyidina Hussain radiya Llahu ‘anhu, although pressed by circumstances, did not want to change the pattern set out by his elders for these lands. His son, Zayn al ‘Abidin, however was forced by circumstances to sell some of them.

 

NEXT⇒  Chapter 5 Continued – The Battle of Karbala’


[1] Mishkat, pg. 582; al Isabah, 4/461.

[2] Usd al Ghabah, 3/18.

[3] Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, 3/166.

[4] Musannaf Abdul Razzaq, 4 pg. 330, 331.

[5] Musnad Ahmed, 1/201; Musnad Abi Ya’la, 6/182.

[6] Musnad Ahmed, 1/201.

[7] Musannaf Abdul Razzaq, 2 pg. 34.

[8] Jami al Tirmidhi.

[9] Surah al Baqarah: 249.

[10] Futuh al Buldan, pg. 254; Ruhama’ Baynahum, pg. 307.

[11] Tarikh Baghdad, 1/141; Talkhis Ibn ‘Asakir, 4/321; Sirat ‘Umar ibn al Khattab, pg. 164; Tarikh al Thiqat, pg. 119; al Sawa’iq al Muhriqah, pg. 177; Tarikh al Madinah al Munawwarah, 3/799; al Isabah, 1/332; Sharh Nahj al Balaghah, pg. 161.

[12] Siyar Alam al Nubala’, 3/191, Sirat Umar ibn al Khattab, p. 97, al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, 8/207, al Riyad al Nadirah, 2/28, Kanz al Ummal, 7/102, Mukhtasar Tarikh Ibn Asakir, 7/12.

[13] Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, 4/336.

[14] Kitab al Thiqat, 2/246.

[15] Tarikh Khalifah ibn Khayyat, 1/151, 152; Tarikh al Islam, 2/134

[16] Ansab al Ashraf, 5/68-69.

[17] Al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, 7/176, 181.

[18] Al Isabah, 1/525.

[19] Al Isabah, 1/332.

[20] Al Bidayah, 7/327.

[21] Dhayl al Mudhil, addendum of Tarikh al Tabari, 13/19.

[22] Mukhtasar Tarikh Ibn ‘Asakir, 7/128; Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, 3/193.

[23] Mukhtasar Tarikh Dimashq, 7/22, 128; al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, 8/37.

[24] Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, 3/192; Tahdhib Tarikh Ibn ‘Asakir, pg. 322; al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, 8/207.

[25] Mukhtasar Tarikh Ibn ‘Asakir, 7/331.

[26] Al Isabah, 1/331.

[27] Khulasat Tahdhib Tahdhib al Kamal, 1/228.

[28] Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, 3/188.

[29] Al Isti’ab, 1/382.

[30] Tahdhib Tarikh Ibn ‘Asakir, pg. 322.

[31] Al Tabaqat, 5/110.

[32] Al Ash’athiyyat, pg. 52; Bihar al Anwar, 10/141; Mas’alat Aqriba Nawazi, pg. 276.

[33] Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, 3/196.

[34] Usd al Ghabah, 2/40.

[35] Mukhtasar Tarikh Ibn ‘Asakir, 7/129; Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, 3/193; al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, 8/207.

[36] Musannaf ‘Abdul Razzaq, 1/505.

[37] Majma’ al Zawa’id, 3/225; Musnad Abi Ya’la, 1/191.

[38] Musannaf ‘Abdul Razzaq, 5/47.

[39] Musannaf ‘Abdul Razzaq, 5/82.

[40] Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, 8/247.

[41] Kitab al Ma’rifah wa al Tarikh, 3/104.

[42] Sharh al Siyar al Kabir, 2/267.

[43] Ibid.

[44] Majma’ al Zawa’id, 8/108.

[45] Mas’alah Aqriba’ Nawazi, pg. 189 – 190.

[46] Sirat Hadrat Amir Muawiyah, 1/326-328.

[47] Rijal al Kashshi, pg.72, 102; Bihar al Anwar, 10/122-124.

[48] Al Amali, 2/179-180.

[49] Mukhtasar Tarikh Ibn ‘Asakir, 7/137; Siyar A’lam al Nubala’, 3/198.

[50] Al Irshad, pg. 182.

[51] Akhbar al Tiwal, pg. 220.

[52] Akhbar al Tiwal, pg. 225.

[53] Sirat Hadrat Amir Muawiyah, 1/375-385.

[54] Mukhtasar Tarikh Ibn ‘Asakir, 7/115.

[55] Al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, 8/151.

[56] Al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, 8/150 – 151.

[57] Tarikh Dimashq, 7/115.

[58] Kashf al Mahjub, pg. 92-93.

[59] Tarikh al Madinah al Munawwarah, 1/138.

[60] Tarikh al Madinah al Munawwarah, 1/138; Wafa’ al Wafa’, 4/1282.

[61] Al Isabah, 4/198; Wafa’ al Wafa’, 1/1272.

[62] Wafa’ al Wafa’, 1/1272.

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