All had now presented their lives in the way of Allah, only the rider of the shoulder of RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, the coolness of the eyes of Fatima, the inheritor of the lion of Allah, the leader of the youth of Paradise, Hazrat Imam Hussain RadiyAllahu Anhu was left with his ill and weak son Imam Zainul Aabideen, who could barely move from his bed. But he still managed to gather some strength and with a spear in his hand, approached his father and requested, ‘O father, let me go before you. It is not possible for you to be killed whilst I am still alive.’ Imam Hussain took the ailing son to one side and explained, ‘My dear son, on you lays the responsibility of protecting the women of our family, and you have to escort them back to our land. And from you will continue the progeny of mine and you will inherit the precious belongings of my grandfather and my father. All my hopes are with you. Look, be very patient and enduring; face all the troubles in the way of Allah with boldness and without complaint. In all circumstances, uphold the principles of Islam and the Sunnah of your grandfather Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam. When you reach Madinah, present my Salaams to RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam and describe all you have witnessed. You are my only inheritor and so you cannot go to the battlefield.’
Then Imam Hussain RadiyAllahu Anhu handed over all the responsibilities to Imam Zainul Aabideen, placed the Amamah on the head of his son and made him lie down on the bed. Then he came to another camp, opened a trunk, took out the armour and wore it. He then took the Amamah of RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam and put is on his blessed head; took the shield of Sayyedina Ameer Hamza and covered his back; hung around his neck the blessed sword ‘Zulfiqar’ belonging to his father, the lion of Allah, Hazrat Ali RadiyAllahu Anhu; took the spear of Hazrat Jaffer Tayyar RadiyAllahu Anhu, and wore the belt of his brother Imam Hasan RadiyAllahu Anhu around his waist. The members of the family were watching this sight and knew very well that their leader was going to take leave from them for a long time. The army of Allah was to lose their commander. The women who had already lost their husbands were about to lose their only protector and guardian. His children were about to become orphans. There was no consolation for them but only tears in their eyes as they bid farewell to their master.
Here was a fighter who had been starving for the past three days and had attended to the bodies of his cousins, nephews and his own sons. Now he descended onto the battlefield, looked the enemy in the eyes and made some final remarks. After praising Allah and his Rasool Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, he continued on and said, ‘O people! The Prophet you believe in has said, whosoever makes enmity with Hasan and Hussain does so with me and whosoever has animosity with me he has so with Allah. So fear Allah and avoid fighting with me. If you are true believers then think what your answer to Allah Ta’ala will be? And what face will you show to the beloved RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam? O you who have destroyed the family of RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, just ponder over your fate. O disloyal ones! You invited me to come over and to help you against a tyrant and now when I have arrived you are turning your backs on me. O oppressors! You have destroyed my family and killed my dear ones, and now want to kill me. Just think who am I? Whose grandson am I? Who are my parents? You still have chance, drop the idea of killing me and save yourselves from the fire of Hell.
There was chaos in the enemy camp. One of them shouted, ‘O Hussain, you have only one choice, either give your hand in the hand of Yazeed or be ready to die.’ Imam replied, ‘O treacherous ones, I knew you would not listen, as your hearts have been sealed and your Islamic spirit is dead. I only spoke to justify my position so that you cannot say on the Day of Judgement that you were not aware. Alhamdulillah, I have done my duty. As far as Yazeed is concerned, I will never submit myself to a wicked oppressor. Now if you have made up your mind then send your chosen one to fight me.’ Thus, Amr bin Sa’ad called the fighters who were saved to fight Imam Hussain. First to go was a famous wrestler from Syria, Tameem bin Qahtabah. He came boasting about his strength and skills but in just one blow from his sword Zulfiqar, he was left to die on the ground.
Badr bin Suhail was watching all this. He started swearing at the other fighters saying they were cowards and did not know how to fight. He sent one of his sons to fight. Imam Hussain said, ‘It would be better if your boasting father came to fight so he would not have to see his son dying’. In no time Imam sent him into Hell. Badr could not bear to see this state of his son and leaped forward to attack Imam Hussain with his spear. Imam defended his attack. Badr then removed his sword and attacked. Imam again saved his attack and launched such a mighty blow that Badr’s head went rolling like a football.
One after the other they all came to try their luck but none could withstand the power of Zulfiqar. The bodies kept piling up. There was a roar in the camps of the enemy that if the son of the lion of Allah continues in this way then none of us will survive. Cowards then decided to attack from all sides. Imam Hussain was surrounded from all sides by bare swords thirsty of his blood. But when the Zulfiqar came into action, the heads of the enemies dropped like leaves on the ground.
When Amr bin Sa’ad saw that his trick had failed miserably, he ordered to shoot arrows from all sides. Imam was being bombarded with arrows from all directions. It was one against thousands now. His horse was so injured that it could not move anymore. Imam Hussain’s body got covered with so many wounds that blood was gushing all over his body. Suddenly a poison-tipped spear hit his blessed forehead, the same forehead which was always kissed by RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam. Imam Hussain RadiyAllahu Anhu now lied sub-conscious on the ground. But the attacks did not stop. The wicked souls were still attacking him with spears. One of the spears went right across his body. After suffering seventy two lethal wounds, he bowed down in prostration. It was in this state that his blessed soul left his body and entered into the eternal pleasure and mercy of his Lord. Inna Lillahi wa Inna Ilaihi Raji’oon.
At the time Imam Hussain RadiyAllahu attained the highest degree of martyrdom, his age was 56 years 5 months and 5 days. The date was 10th Muharram 61 Hijri.
Nadhr bin Harsa came forward to detach his blessed head from his body but was terrified by the majesty of the Imam’s body. Then Khola bin Yazeed, Sunaan bin Anas or Shimar was the ill-fated dog who did the gruesome task.
Yazeed and his followers did not stop there. They went on a looting spree not even sparing the clothes and shoes on Imam Hussain RadiyAllahu Anhu’s body. They then turned towards the camps that were sheltering the women of the family of RasoolAllah Sallallahu Alaihi wa Sallam, insulting and looting them.
Then Amr bin Sa’ad announced, ‘Who will run their horses on the Imam and mutilate his body?’ Ten wretched souls volunteered, mounted on their horses and crushed his blessed body.’ [Tareekh e Karbala]
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