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'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 08:02
by Muntazir
In the name ilaahi.

Salaamun 'aleykum.

Blood-shedding according to the ‘Ulamaa:

1. Blood-shedding is Haraam in itself.
2. Blood-shedding is Haraam because it hurts the sect.
3. Blood-shedding is Haraam if it hurts the sect.
4. Blood-shedding is not Haraam.

Shi'ah 'Ulamaa can be divided into 'Four' in regards to their views on Blood-shedding in Muharram al-Haraam.

Many of these 'Ulamaa have already shared their views and Fataawa on blood-shedding and it is Waajib upon us to accept and agree to their rulings.

In this section, we will try to collect and study the views of 'Ulamaa regarding blood-shedding, insha'Allah.

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 11:48
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid Mohsin al-Amin al-‘Aameli [r.’a]

He was one of the greatest Shi’ah marja’ of his time.

In 1923 he wrote the book "al-Majaalis ath-Thaaniyah" in which he wrote: "And what some people do injuring themselves with swords and hitting themselves hardly in a way that harm them is from the encouragement of Shaytan".

In 1928 he wrote "Risaalat at-Tanziyh" in which he brought the religious and Fiqhi proofs that it is Haraam. He wrote: "It is from the saddening things… using drums and flutes, and cutting the heads in a way that show the Shi’ah in a barbaric way and make the others mock them… and top of that consider it a kind of worship and to attribute it to the purified Ahl al-Bayt [‘a.s]."

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 11:52
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid Mohammad Baqir as-Sadr [r.’a]

Sheikh Muhammad Reda an-Nu’maani, a student of Shaheed as-Sadr, accompanied the Sayyid in the most difficult stages of his life. He wrote the book "ash-Shaheed as-Sadr" published in Qum, in which he tells us that Sayyid as-Sadr said: "the commemoration is a thorn in the eyes of the tyrants, and these rituals have implanted in the hearts of the generations the love of Imam Hussein [‘a.s] and the love of Islam, therefore we should preserve them although some of them need polish and modification."

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 11:57
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Abul Qaassim al-Musawi al-Khui [r.’a]

Regarding Tatbir [hitting the heads with swords] and hitting oneself with a metal chain, Sayyid al-Khui said: "It is forbidden if it harms the image of the Shi’ite Islamic sect in the eyes of people". And when he was asked again as to what he means by ‘harm’ he said "if results in mockery".

This opinion was recorded in the "al-Masaail ash-Shari’a" and the magazine "Ru’a wa

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 12:09
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid Musawi [Imam] al-Khomeini [r.’a]

"‘Ashura means al-Hussein [‘a.s], so there is no ‘Ashura without Imam al-Hussein [‘a.s], and there is no Khomeini without al-Hussein [‘a.s] and ‘Ashura."

You rarely find an occasion in which Imam al-Khomeini participated without him mentioning Imam Hussein [‘a.s] so much that he was nicknamed the Hussein of this time. Imam al-Khomeini says in his book "al-Kalimaat al-Qisaar" which means "The Short Words", on page 71: "The Islamic revolution in Iran is a sparkle from ‘Ashura and the great divine revolution which took place in it".

And we haven’t seen among the Maraaja’ someone who had this close attachment to ‘Ashura as Imam al-Khomeini had. It is him who used to ask people to commemorate the remembrance of Abi ‘Abdillah [‘a.s]. He said in "al-Kalimaat al-Qisaar", page 71: "commemorate Kerbala, and commemorate the blessed name of the Master of martyrs, because it is through this commemoration that Islam lives".

Regarding hitting the heads with swords or knives and hitting the body with chains, Imam al-Khomeini said in "Nahdat ‘Ashura", page 110-111: "I should speak here about the gatherings and memorial ceremonies that are held in the name of Imam al-Hussein bin ‘Ali [‘a.s], neither us nor religious person say everything done by anybody is correct and good. Many times some of the grand scholars considered these things deviated and bad and they forbade it. We all know that in the last 20 years and so the respected scholar Hajj Sheikh ‘Abdul Kareem al-Haeri al-Yazdi [r.’a], who was among the eminent Shi’ah scholars, forbade the Shi’ah from acting the events and persons of ‘Ashura, and he replaced them with a gathering for mourning and elegies, and this is what the other scholars do with the actions that contradicts with the religious rules and they still forbid it until now."

On page 112 of the same book the Imam said: "You should know that in order to preserve your progress then you should preserve these rituals, and of course if there are deviated and wrong actions done by some people who are not informed then these actions should be stopped. But the mourning ceremonies and the processions should remain strong."

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 12:20
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid ‘Ali al-Khamenei

Question: What is the ruling [hukm] of beating the chest with the hand, hitting the head with swords or razors and hitting oneself with chains at the head of each there is sharp razor in mourning ceremonies?

Answer: Commemorating the morning ceremonies from gatherings, advice, guidance, recitation of elegies and nawhas, and beating the chest … is among the greatest deeds that bring us close to Allah… As for hitting the head with swords or razors, then in addition to the fact it is not among the mourning expressions and there is no support for it from the infallibles [‘a.s], it nowadays weakens the sect in the eyes of people, and it is forbidden.

Question: In some ceremonies, some people act as if they are Imam Hussein [‘a.s] and the other martyrs and some women act as the women of Kerbala, and that includes some lies, what is your opinion …?

Answer: If the mourning recitation, or the acting contained lies or if they weaken the sect then they are Haraam.

Question: Is it ok to carry coffins that represent the coffins of Ahl al-Bayt [‘a.s]?

Answer: There is no problem in it if does not weaken the sect or if it does not bring mockery of the believers.

Question: What is the ruling of rubbing one's body and face in front of a Ma’soom's [‘a.s] shrine until blood run from their wounds, and entering the shrine?

Answer: There is no support for these practices that are far away from showing grief and loyalty to the Ahl al-Bayt [‘a.s]. It is not permissible if it hurts the body, or weakens the sect in people's eyes.

Question: Is it permissible to have flags in the mourning ceremonies?

Answer: There is no problem in it by itself, but they should not do it as if it was part of religion.

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 13:03
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid Muhammad Sa'eed al-Hakim at-Tabatabai

Question: Is the practice of Tatbeer (striking swords on head, slitting it open to stream blood) permissible?

Answer: As the act of Tatbeer and other kinds of slogans is performed to populate the right principal and express emotions towards it then it is religiously recommended from this side. Yes, it can be prohibited because of secondary reasons like if it causes personal harm, public disadvantage or similar reasons. There is no set criterion for such prohibition as it differs from place to place and from time to time. It can also be different because of difference in opinions.

We ask Allah almighty to guide us and all devotees in all of that as we only depend on Him.

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 13:30
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Mohammad Hussein Fadlullah [r.’a]

Answering a question about hitting the head with sword and shedding blood he said: "We are not the first to tackle this issue, but Sayyid al-Amaeen also tackled it in a scientific way, but he faced strong opposition, others who talked about this issue are Sayyid Abul Hasan al-Asfahani, and Sayyid Mahdi al-Brogordi, and Sayyid al-Khomeini. Sayyed al-Khui, also gave his opinion about this issue and his fatwa appeared in a special book that the Islamic Jamaa’a in USA and Canada published. When he was asked about hitting the head and hitting the body with chains he answered, “if it weakens the sect then it is not permissible.” And when they asked how? He answered, “if brings the mockery of other people. As for us, we feel that this represents backwardness in Shi’ism, and that it is my duty along with Ayatullah ‘Ali al-Khamenei to give a fatwa about it, even if we are going to face backwardness and furious feelings, and we are ready to face them with all strength.”

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 13:34
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Mohammad Hussein Kaashif al-Ghita'

Question: What is the ruling [hukm] of beating the chest with the hand, hitting the head with swords or razors and hitting oneself with chains at the head of each there is sharp razor in mourning ceremonies?

Answer: If these things come with pure love for Imam Husain, and true sadness without any pretending then they might be ok, and even they will be something to bring one closer to Allah. But this is not easy for most people, and the majority of the people who do these things are pretending, and without complete sincere feelings this becomes Haraam. It is better to cry and to say elegies and to disassociate from the enemies of Imam Hussein [‘a.s] and from his oppressors.

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 13:37
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Murtadha Mutahhari [r.’a]

In his book "al-Malahama al-Husseiniyyah", Shaheed Mutahhari adopts Sayyid al-Ameen’s opinion.

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 13:38
by Muntazir
Sheikh Dr. Ahmad al-Waaeli

He said: "The individual solution might not be very successful. There should be some kind of consensus among scholars to decide what is forbidden and what is allowed to protect the reputation of our rituals… There is no doubt that with time this will be solved."

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 14:21
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid 'Ali as-Sistani:

The limits for reviving Hussein’s traditions are that no harm must come to the body or to the noble reputation of Islam.

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 14:26
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid 'Ali as-Sistani

Question: What is the philosophy of Azadari (mourning and lamentation) for Imam Husain?

Answer: There is no doubt that the tragedy of Kerbala, when ascribed to the killers, is a criminal and terrible act. However when ascribed to Husain (A) himself, it represents a conscious confrontation and a courageous resistance for a sacred cause. The whole nation had failed to stand up to Yazid. They had succumbed to his will, and deviation and regression towards the pre-Islamic ways were increasing.

Passiveness by Husain (A) in this situation would have meant the end of Islam as we know it. Thus Husain (A) took upon himself the responsibility of the whole nation. The greatest tragedy was that one who stood up for the noblest of causes, the defense of Islam, was cut down in so cruel a manner.

It is for this reason that the sacrifice of Husain (A) is commemorated annually throughout the Muslim world. Our sorrow never abates as we relive the tragedy.

The commemoration of Ashura on the 10th of Muharram every year serves to remind us of the sacrifices of the family of the Prophet (S). It also makes us aware of the people, then and now, who tried to destroy Islam and the family of the Prophet (pbuh) and all that they stood for - as well as those who watched, listened and did nothing.

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 14:27
by Muntazir
Ayatullah Sayyid 'Ali as-Sistani

Question: I have a question about matam (Azadari) and the manner our people are holding Muharram rituals.

Answer: It is not appropriate of the mourners to violate the commemoration method received by the righteous predecessors (Salaf-e Saleh) in mourning the martyrdom of the Lord of Martyrs, Imam Husain (a.s.).

Re: 'Ulamaa and Blood-shedding

Posted: 15 Dec 2010, 20:10
by abuali
Thanks brother for the extensive research on this topic
Muntazir wrote:Ayatullah Murtadha Mutahhari [r.’a]

In his book "al-Malahama al-Husseiniyyah", Shaheed Mutahhari adopts Sayyid al-Ameen’s opinion.

Could you quote Sayyid al Ameens opinion please.

If possible i would request you to post references to the sources of the above. If they are omline links would suffice, if they are from books in arabic or farsi or english their titles and author names would do. If you have taken from an english translation of an arabic or farsi book both titles and authors of the same would be ideal.

This will assist readers in further researching the matter as well as giving credibility to the content.