Is a Shi'a religious holiday that occurs forty days after Aashura, the commemoration of the martyrdom by beheading of Hossein bin Ali, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad which falls on the 20th day of the month of Safar? Hossein and 72 supporters died in the Battle of Karbala in the year 61 AH (680 CE). Forty days is the usual length of the time of mourning in many Islamic cultures.
The occasion reminds the faithful of the core message behind Hossein's martyrdom: establishing justice and fighting injustice, no matter what its incarnation -- a message that strongly influenced subsequent Shi'a uprisings against the perceived tyranny of Umayyad and Abbasid rule.
In the first Arba'een gathering in the year 62 AH, Jabir ibn Abdullah, a companion of the Prophet, was one of the people who performed a pilgrimage to the burial site of Hossein. Due to his infirmity and probably blindness, he was accompanied by Atiyya bin Saad. His visit coincided with that of the surviving female members of the Prophet's family and Hossein's son and heir Ali, who had all been held captive in Damascus by Yazid I, the Umayyad Caliph. Ali ibn Hossein had been too ill to participate in the Battle of Karbala, but looked on from the sidelines.
The city of Karbala in Iraq, the third holy place of Shi'a Islam, is the center of the proceedings where in a show of humility, many crawl through the streets of the city while others fall on their hands and knees as they approach the Shrines of Hossein and his brother Abbas ibn Ali.
As with all Muslim religious holidays, Arba'een follows the lunar Islamic calendar, not the Western solar Gregorian calendar. Arba'een fell on 28 February in the year 2008.
Number forty is mystic in Theosophy. According to the Islamic culture if someone practices a good deed constantly during forty days, it would be his inseparable attribute and lead to descending of God's blessing. In some religions forty days and forty nights praying has been special position.
When Prophet Moses (AS) prayed forty nights; found the ability to hear the words of God, "And when we appointed a time of forty nights with Musa, then you took the calf (for a god) after him and you were unjust." [Holy Quran 2:51]
Holy prophet Muhammad (SAW) said, "Whoever dedicates himself to God for forty days, will find springs of wisdom sprout out of his heart and flow on his tongue."
Commemorating of the fortieth day of deeds by their family and giving alms is one of the common customs among some of the Muslims. The fortieth day of Imam Hossain (AS)'s martyrdom is called Arbaeen. In this day Shiites commemorate Imam Hossain 's revolution. These forty days are a suitable opportunity for people to develop the love of Imam Hossain (AS) and hate his murderers, in their hearts. Forty consecutive days, from Ashura up to Arbaeen, also is a national ceremony of aversion announcement from oppressors of the history.
In the first Arbaeen, Jabir Ibn Abdullah was the person who pilgrimage the holy tombs of Imam Hossain (AS). According to some narrations, captive family of Imam Hossain (AS), in the way of returning to Medina from Sham, visited Jabir and pilgrimage tombs of Ashura's martyrs.
O Hossain , commemoration of your revolution from Ashura up to Arbaeen makes the world pay attention to the message of the resurrection. Ashura is martyrdom day of the history makers and Arbaeen is pilgrimage day of Ashura makers.
Arbaeen philosophy shows itself, and we can teach martyrdom lesson from this class and prepare ourselves in order to help our master Hazrat-e-Mahdi (AS) (May God hasten his reappearance).
20th Safar is the day of Arbaeen, the 40th day after the martyrdom of Imam Hossain (AS), his friends and relatives in Karbala on 10th Muharram.
According to Imam Hassan al-Askari (AS) today it is highly desirable to:
Imam Jafar al-Sadiq (AS) has advised the faithful to recite the Ziyarat of the day of Arbaeen. [Please refer to Mafatihul Jinan, Supplications and other Ziyarat books for Ziyarat of Arbaeen.]
After the recitation of Ziyarat, pray two Rakat Salaat.
Muharram is a month in which justice has raised against the injustice and it has proved that as far as the history is concerned, Justice has always been the conqueror.
Muharram is a month which has been revived by the Lord of warriors for the faith and the Muslim martyrs and was freed from the plots of the immoral men of Banni Omayyeh which put Islam in the threshold of decadence.
This is the blood of the Lord of Martyrs (Imam Hossain ) which can stir the blood of all of the Islamic nations.
Muharram is the month of the great movement of the Lord of the martyrs and also of the God's Saints, who has taught the mankind the way of one's purification and state of being strong, through his raising against the tyrant. He considered sacrifice as the way which would lead to decadence of the tyrant and defeat of any dictators. The point which is the highlight of the Islamic educational affairs for all nations forever.
With the initiation of the month of Muharram, [in fact], the month of bravery and sacrifice started. The month during which the blood conquered the sword.The month of Muharram the month which is the solid proof of the defeat of the superpowers before the word of righteousness. The month during which the Islamic nation's Imam has taught us the way of campaign against the tyrants of the history.
The martyrdom of the Lord of the martyrs revived the Islamic school of thought.Refreshing the memory of Ashura (the day on which Imam Hossain (AS) became martyr, Muharram 10), is a task of high political and religious importance.Refresh the name of Karbala, and the holy name of the Lord of the martyrs for, through this Islam will remain alive.
Revive this month of Muharram for; it is responsible for all [the blessings] that we have.The memorial ceremonies held for the commemoration of the Lord of martyrs and the ones who possess free will, is the place where the knowledge defeats ignorance, justice conquers, the priority of trust over traitorousness, must be held as gloriously as possible. And also the red flags of Ashura should be kept flying as a sign of the emergence of the day in which there will be a retaliatory measure on behalf of the oppressed against the tyrant.
Ashura is the national mourning day of the oppressed nation and a day of bravery and the new birth of Islam and the Muslims.It is the sacrifice of the Lord of the martyrs which has kept Islam alive (for us).The month of Muharram is the month in which the Yazid like powers and the satanic plots would be defeated.
The martyrdom of Lord of the oppressed and the believers of Quran, the beginning of the eternal life of Islam and the one of the Holy Quran all happened in Muharram.The Lord of martyrs (AS) created the great movement of the Ashura and saved Islam and justice through sacrifice, devoting his blood and the blood of his family.
The Lord of martyr's immune the religion and Islam through his measure.Imam Hossain (AS) sacrificed himself along with his children and relatives. After his martyrdom Islam was enforced.