Feminism in Islam through the life of Lady Fatema tuz Zahra (as)

Feminism is an ununderstood concept. People have been misled to what actually feminism means. While it actually is about equality and justice, others may vary to perceive it negatively. As Cambridge dictionary defines Feminism to be, “the belief that women should be allowed the same rights, power, and opportunities as men and be treated in the same way, or the set of activities intended to achieve this state.” Well, there is more to it through an Islamic perspective from the exemplary life of Bibi Fatema (as)


While the western world continues to shoot arrows at the religion of Islam for being backward and unfair towards their women. We fail to introduce them to a personality like that of Lady Fatema (as) who was a pure feminist in its original form. Had the world or rather even us as Muslims would have embraced the teachings and taken lessons from the life of Lady Fatema, we wouldn’t be needing the concept of Feminism or any feminists today, to begin with.


Lady Fatema (as) was not only the daughter of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saww), and the fact that she was married to Imam Ali (as), but she was more than that. Here, we are in no way demeaning the position of those personalities and the relationship that they share, but what we often do is, we just put Lady Fatema (as) in association with them and forget to mention her own merits as an individual.


When we look at a lot of aspects of Lady Fatema’s life, as an outsider and not someone who loves and adores her, we realize there is so much for the world to learn and embrace from her. From the beginning of her life to the very end she was an epitome of the best humanitarian principles.


What are some of the problems we have today? Inequality within the genders? Lack of justice? Not enough opportunities or platforms for women? Well, now if you look into the life of Lady Fatema (as), you will find that she stood for her rights and was never given a station less than a man.


Islam is a religion that promotes equality within the genders. What Muslims display today shows otherwise, but if you read within the Holy Quran, the Islamic laws and within the history of the religion, Islam supports and adheres equal opportunities for both genders.


If we look at the life of Lady Fatima (as), it shows us the actual position of a woman in the religion of Islam. In this article, we shall see through the different stages of Lady Fatima (as)’s life, that will reflect and show, how Islam prevails equality among the genders, but we as Muslims fail to follow and appreciate the same.


Lady Fatima (as), the daughter

As we all know, Lady Fatima (as) was the daughter of Prophet Muhammad (saww), and she was the one that was born after all the other sons of the Prophet had died. Allah (swt) implied here, that lineages and families do not necessarily continue with the sons, but with daughters too.

Sadly, many societies today believe, that only a son can take the lineage or the family name further, and therefore take extreme measures in order to have a son even if it takes the life of their respective wives in some cases. In some societies, people are known to abort the fetus as soon as they know that the baby is a girl. Female Infanticide is at its peak and has resulted in major issues in few countries making the ratio of the genders unequal.

In fact, Allah (swt) mentions in the Quran and tackles this issue quite directly in the verse, “When the infant girl, is buried alive, is questioned, for what crime she was killed.” Surah 81 v 8 – 9. This verse comes in reference to when in days of Jahiliya, people would bury the female child, as she was no use to them in war, and would later bring shame to the family if she married someone from another tribe.

Many argue even today that the birth of a female child comes with a million expenses and she is more of a liability than a benefit to the family. Therefore, they would prefer aborting the child than suffer. Allah (swt) mentions in the Holy Quran, “You shall not kill your children for fear of want. We will provide for them and for you. To kill them is a grievous sin.” Surah 17 v 31


Therefore, by placing the entire lineage through the line of Lady Fatima (as), Allah (swt) showed us something beautiful here, that lineages and families can be taken forward by a woman. And also, that a female child can bring you glory and honor, just like Lady Fatima (as) brought to the Household of the Prophet (saww), SubhanAllah!


Lady Fatima’s (as) knowledge

Lady Fatima (as) was known for her knowledge of the Quran and the religion of Islam. She was eloquent in her teaching and her supplications.

Narrations tell us, that her maid Fidhdhah was known to have lost her way during her Pilgrimage to Hajj when she was asked questions by a man named Abdullah Mubarak to help her find her way back, she conversed with him only using the verses of the Quran and nothing more. This indicates to us the amount of Quran that must have been recited within the House of Lady Fatima (as), that this was the knowledge of her maid, SubhanAllah.


While, if you see today in many of our Muslim communities, we refuse to educate or spend on the education of our daughters saying that it is unnecessary, or that she is anyways going to get married and will bear children, why does she need education and knowledge? But we fail to understand, that women need education as much as men do.


In Bihaar Al-Anwaar, vol. l, p. 177, Ha.54; Mustadrak AI- Wasa’il, vol. XVII, Prophet Muhammad (saww) states that “Seeking knowledge is a duty incumbent upon every Muslim man and Muslim women.” Hereby emphasizing the importance of education for both the male and the female.


Lady Fatima (as) had as much knowledge as any man had in her time, this shows us the importance of education for women in Islam. Women play a very important role in shaping our societies as much as men do. Whether it is within the household as a mother, or outside as professionals. Education for women is very crucial.


Lady Fatima’s marriage

Lady Fatima (as) was married to Ali ibn Abu Talib (as), he was the cousin of the Prophet (saww), the son of the Prophet’s uncle Abu Talib (as). While many had proposed prior to Imam Ali (as). Each time the Prophet (saww) would ask Lady Fatima (as) about any other proposal, she would not show her acceptance. But when the proposal of Imam Ali (as) came, she remained silent, and the Prophet (saww) knew, that her silence was indicative of her approval.


Today, Muslims around the world, force their daughters into marriages that they don’t approve of, or they confirm a proposal without consulting or asking their daughters. Here Prophet Muhammad (saww) displays an important thing, that it is totally required to seek your daughter’s approval before getting her married. You need to ask her, tell her, talk to her before making any decisions. Not the other way around. Islam doesn’t support or promote forced marriages of any manner.


Lady Fatima (as) in politics

Women in Islam today aren’t given enough positions when it comes to our mosques or our communities as a whole. It is all man lead or man-centric. Whether it is, a speaker in the community, a scholar, everywhere we have put men forward while women follow. This wasn’t the case in the early days of Islam.


Lady Fatima (as) was always at the forefront of the society. She was active not only within her community socially but also in the political aspect of it.


During the invocation of Mubahilah, Lady Fatima (as) was among the ones who went to meet the Christians in Najran. When the Christians challenged Islam and asked the Prophet (saww) to bring along with him the best of men, the best of women, and the best of children. Prophet Muhammad (saww) went to meet them along with, Imam Ali (as), Lady Fatima (as) and their sons Hassan (as) and Hussain (as).

The Holy Quran states the following verse for the same, “And unto him who disputeth with thee therein after the knowledge hath come unto thee, say “O Our Apostle Muhammad!” “unto them”: “come ye, let us summon our sons, and “ye summon” your sons, and “we summon” our women and “ye” your women, and “we summon” ourselves and “ye” yourselves and then let us invoke and lay the curse of God on the liars!” (Qur’an, 3:60).

Here, Prophet Muhammad (saww) signifies something very important by taking Lady Fatima (as) with him, that women need to be at the forefront of the society. Whereas today if you see women in Islam, they either aren’t allowed, or they either think it violates their hijab.

Who has a more pious hijab than Lady Fatima (as), but yet she was there! She did everything, showing us that when it comes to serving the religion or serving our societies women can do anything and everything. Nothing should hold us back, as long as we are abiding and upholding each of our principles.


Lady Fatima (as)’s inheritance

Many Muslim families today, have an argument after the death of an elder in the family. They argue that women do not inherit from the family of their father as now they are a part of another family.


In Surah Nisa verse 7 Allah (swt) states, “There is a share for men and a share for women from what is left by parents and those nearest related, whether, the property be small or large – a legal share.”


So in Islam from the Holy Quran (as stated above), and from the history of Lady Fatema (as) we know that daughters inherit from the father. Prophet Muhammad (saww) gave Lady Fatema (as) the land of Fadak as an inheritance. Hence, he implied the fact that daughters do have and hold a share in inheritance as much as sons do.


Lady Fatima (as) was an absolutely spiritual and pious lady. She is the Chief of the women of Paradise, and hence these lessons from her life are indeed sufficient for us to understand how much of an elevated status a woman has in the religion of Islam.

We looked through some important stages of Lady Fatima (as)’s life that we have seen through and have understood, that Islam in its early days, by what is stated in the Holy Quran and by its laws is a religion that supports gender equality and in no way demeans the status of a woman.


Lastly I would like to end it with this, “the status of a woman in Islam is so high, that when she is born, she is a source of mercy for her father when she gets married, she completes half of a man’s faith, and later when she becomes a mother paradise lies under her feet.”   

That is how high is the status of a woman in Islam.


Thank you for reading!

God bless you!



The sources used for this article after the Holy Quran are;


Online Books:

  1. House of Sorrows, The life of Sayyidah Fatimah al-Zahra and her grief by Shaykh ‘Abbas Qummi
  2. Woman by Mahdi Mahrizi (https://www.al-islam.org/woman-mahdi-mahrizi)



  1. The Fourteen Infalliables by Dr. Sayed Ammar Nakshawani



  1. Dr. Sayed Ammar Nakshawani – Lady Fatima: Life and Legacy (2018) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FktdWe6R79U)
  2. Biography of Lady Fatima Zahra – Sayed Ammar Nakshawani (2011) (https://youtu.be/uX_OmdrFgSo)


Visitation to Karbala – Happens through an invitation or through devotion?

Visitation to Karbala – Happens through an invitation or through devotion?

Reflection via personal experience


Imam Al Hussain (as) is the grandson of Prophet Muhammed (saww), the last Prophet of Islam. His sacrifice is eternal, everlasting and his message is that of justice and truth. Imam Al Hussain (as) stood against the tyrant of his time, Yazid and saved humanity from hypocrisy and injustice. His movement was to save the entire human race from the wrong and evil. Imam Al Hussain (as) along with his family and his companions around 100 of them were martyred on the 10th of Muharrum on the plains of Karbala 1400 years ago. His death is mourned all over the world by not only Shia Muslims but anyone who believes in good and upholds the message of truth. Imam Hussain (as) is buried in Karbala along with his sons and his brother AbuFadhlil Abbas (as). His companions are buried there as well. People from different cultures, races, religions, backgrounds walk towards Karbala to visit him and remember his sacrifice on the 40th day of his martyrdom called Arbaeen, the walk of the free. Millions walk, serve and lament in his name to this day, boldly propagating the message of peace to an ailing world.


The love of Imam Al Hussain (as) drives you insane, in a good way, of course, it creates this rush within you, for numerous good things which you wouldn’t have done or even thought about otherwise. Imam Al Hussain (as) inspires you! He does it brilliantly! Whether it is by putting his love in your heart, that makes you content only if you visit him, or putting this desire to do better towards your societies and communities in a way that would resonate through his story.


The event of Karbala has a million lessons, if we each learn, reflect and apply even one of them into our lives, our lives would thoroughly turn out for the better. Not only your own, but it definitely pushes you to help and inspire others as well. We could create a revolution and change the world, if not the entire world, maybe at least the world within ourselves or the world around us. If we take a minute right now and think about any one lesson that Karbala teaches us, and begin to apply it from tomorrow onwards, trust me things will change. Let’s begin with Lady Zaynab’s (as) patience, both before and after Karbala. How many of us lose it with just one test or one problem? How many of us start complaining if Allah (swt) tests us with that one thing we truly desire? How many of us start asking, “why me?”?

Well, that is most of us. But just imagine how much our lives would evolve if we tried to practice at least 1% of Lady Zaynab’s (as) quality of patience. Imagine if we follow in the footsteps of Lady Zaynab (as) who said, “I see nothing but the beauty of Allah (swt).” after experiencing an enormous amount of pain after the tragedy of Karbala. If we seriously try to be like her, we would be busy appreciating the little blessings that Allah (swt) has bestowed upon us, instead of the ingratitude that we frequently express towards Him. How much would this trait help us be more sensitive towards the problems of others instead of own? How much would this help us understand and work towards solving other issues around the world today? How would inculcating this trait of patience and thanksgiving help us be there for others?


Unfortunately, we are so busy within our own little bubbles and our own mess, that we refuse to accept that anyone may or might have it worse than us. We are so busy measuring our lives on an unachievable scale, that we get vicious and vigorous towards achieving those goals that have made us totally unaware and insensitive to what may be happening right before us. Now, when we look at Lady Zaynab (as), we can see what an unimaginable tragedy befell her, but what she looked towards was the bigger picture. She saw the betterment of the coming generations, she saw Islam secured and that’s when she proclaimed, that she saw nothing but the beauty of Allah (swt), and that is exactly what Imam Al Hussain (as) strove to protect. SubhanAllah! The message of Allah (swt) for humanity.


Imam Hussain is for all. The tragedy of Karbala is for all. No matter who you are, where you are or what you do, if you deeply and passionately love Imam Al Hussain (as), a fire is lit inside you. You want to embody him. Be like him. Be inspired by him. Along with that a hope, a desire, a wish, a prayer develops inside you, which makes you want to visit him as soon as possible. You just want to run to Karbala, and be by his shrine under the beautiful dome. Your every sujood after every prayer, each wish starts and ends with this desire. Your heart yearns in, and your mind begins to work towards it.


But this doesn’t happen as easily as I typed it, and as easily as you read it. It takes time, perseverance, commitment, and even a test of faith for some. To visit Karbala, you need an invitation, unlike other places, where you only need a visa, an itinerary and loads of cash. To get an invitation to Karbala, it takes a lot of devotion and dedication. Karbala is the Heaven on Earth, and as you need to be a nice person with good deeds to go to Heaven. Karbala needs the same.


My journey towards Karbala started way back in 2015, that’s the exact year when I sincerely and passionately dived into the message of Karbala. Before this time, Muharrum was just a ceremonial month where we would mourn for 10 days and get on with life on the 11th day. The love for Imam Hussain was there even then. It was inculcated deep within me from my very first breath, Alhamdulillah. But the year 2015, made it much stronger and meaningful.


2015, was the year when I was introduced to the world of English majalis by my cousin. He asked me to randomly watch one of Sayed Ammar Nakshwani’s lectures, and there was no looking back after which, I went on to watch his lecture on the Event of Ghadeer and understood the fact that it was more than just an announcement or a sermon, it was a revelation, a sign, the final and the most important message from Allah (swt) through the last Prophet (saww) of Islam. This helped me understand the essence of Shia’ism, along with its purpose.

After this came the month of Muharrum, things changed for the better. I started listening to majalis online from various scholars around the world. Each helped me look at Karbala differently. With each lecture, each lamentation, each masaib, my longing to be at Karbala increased, further and further. That year, I registered for the December trip with Spiritual Journeys, but as time got closer, something personal came up, and I had to back out. Another year went by, with a deep unfulfilled desire in my heart to visit my Imam and to visit the land where it all happened. The following year again, I registered with the same group, but again, unfortunately, couldn’t make it that year too as I had a lot of coursework due. Again the year after, I couldn’t make it due to some financial commitments. As much as it upset me, as much as it broke my heart each time I couldn’t go, each year came with an opportunity to reflect on my shortcomings, my faults, my slips, my wrongdoings. Every year would bring space for me to think about which of my actions may have upset the Imam (as). Each year, got me more and closer, to the Divine by seeking forgiveness and thanking Him immensely for all the blessings.


In 2018, I registered, Alhamdulillah got a spot. We need to take a moment here to appreciate the patience that SJ showed towards me with my frequent registrations. Things just started falling in place, everything just went easy. To be honest, the situation wasn’t any different from the previous years, but Alhamdulillah, when Imam Hussain (as) invites you, nothing comes in the middle. With this whole episode, I noticed one thing, some may wait for an invitation from the Imam (as), some may wait for financial stability, some may wait for being spiritually ready. As much as each of these is important, nothing comes near faith, devotion, and love. If you have those things towards the Ahlulbayt (as), they will invite you no matter what. Imam Hussain (as) tests you. He sees how much can you endure in the struggle towards him. Personally, I have seen people with no money, visit Abbabdillah (as) frequently, and those with millions waiting for an invitation. It is all about your dedication and nothing more. Nothing less.


When you are finally there, like right there, standing right before those personalities who you dearly love, the feeling is just indescribable, it is too overwhelming. You are just there, with a heart full of emotions and a numb mind. You have no idea what to do, what to say, all you do is weep. All you do is cry, cry like a baby who is just born. Cry like you just felt your soul. Cry like, everything has changed from this very moment. You recall your every sin, every mistake, every error, and you think to yourself after all of this, you were still invited, the Ahlulbayt (as) has called you towards them. They have pulled you towards them like a magnet pulls iron filings. Maybe it is a sign to change from now on. I could do this by giving up that one wrong habit that Allah (swt) dislikes and thank him for this blessing. You just feel eternally thankful, blissfully grateful. Words do not suffice me here. But the experience and the feelings and the smell, of these places, is divine!


We reached Najaf, in the morning, I went to the hotel room and rested for a bit while my roommate, a lovely lady (she added a beautiful charm and some thought-provoking discussions to this entire trip) had already visited the Shrine of Imam Ali (as), she went and paid her respects. I was just looking at her and felt weird about why I didn’t feel like going and doing the same. I took a while to think about it, and when I would think about going, it would leave me blank. That’s when I felt or rather realized, that I need someone with me, as in a scholar, to give me a brief lecture, give a little starter to my thoughts and feelings, help me understand how I feel about Imam Ali (as) at the precise moment when I stand before him. I don’t want to visit him and feel overwhelmed and be unable to say the right things or more like the appropriate things. The Imam I have called out to all my life, the Imam who has been there for me at all times. The Imam I surely have let down multiple times when I haven’t followed his teachings completely and have had the audacity to pick and choose from what I like and what I don’t feel comfortable doing. What do you say to an exceptional personality like Imam Ali (as)? I thought, maybe I should begin with saying a thank you!

Later that evening, we walk towards the shrine of Imam Ali (as), I couldn’t seem to lift my head up, too much to take it all in, first it’s the disbelief lingering around, like, “Am I really here?”

We now stand right in front of the gate, the gate of knowledge as he is! Shiekh Mohammed Al Hilli was phenomenal with his introduction. All I remember was, he asked us to thank Allah (swt) and Imam Ali (as) for inviting us, and to thank them for everything. He gave a captivating lecture comprising a number of things which certainly put my thoughts out in the right direction. After which all I remember was, my head was down and I began connecting with the Imam. There was this inner voice within me, straight from my heart which started speaking to him. Tears began rolling, as we prayed the Ziyarah. These are those moments when you realize, that life is more than those targets we try to achieve, and those ridiculous materialistic aims that we have put down for ourselves. In these moments you realize how much of our souls have we damaged in doing those things, and while you stand there and speak to your Imam, you can feel yourself healing. You feel like that dose of medicine that just soothes your pain. Spiritual healing as I would like to say. It is just precious! Certainly, I’ll never forget that moment. That moment was everything. And I am glad, I didn’t go on my own. I am glad I waited. I am glad I didn’t rush this, or else it wouldn’t be as beautiful as it was. Alhamdulillah!


During the next few days, a series of visits happened. Firstly, it was Masjid Al Kufa, near that area we visited Maythem Al-Tammar, a very dedicated companion of Imam Ali (as), very inspiring, a very dedicated companion, loads to learn from. Dr. Sayed Ammar Nakshawani gave us a whole history of the city of Kufa, which made it easier to put a lot of puzzle pieces together and everything made sense a lot better and in depth. While Masjid Al Kufa has a lot of history within it, of the different Prophets of Islam, has different companions (Muslim bin Aqeel, Hani bin Urwa, and Mukhtaar Al Thaqafi) buried there, it is an emotional site for the lovers of Imam Ali (as), it is the exact site where Imam Ali (as) was struck on the 19th of Ramadan. Standing near the qibla where he was struck, and then later walking towards the Imam’s house, you envision the amount of time it must have taken him during that painful walk on that morning. It is deeply sad, and again, the excellent lectures and descriptions of the different sites and personalities by Shiekh Mohammed Al Hilli, helped us all connect in a way we otherwise wouldn’t possibly have.

That same day, we were blessed with the opportunity to go and visit the Grand Ayatollah Sistani, at his residence which was a great honor in itself. Sitting there at his residence, and admiring the simplicity that he practices, whether it is his house or his way of life was indeed a lesson session on its own. You indeed realize that this is how men of knowledge and those that seek the pleasure and wish to serve Allah (swt), His Prophet (saww) and his Holy Household (as) would live because they resided and lived their lives in the very same way. With sheer elegance and simplicity, they did not seek this world, rather were busy attaining and working for the next. It made me reflect on what is indeed our real purpose. In the course of meeting him, we were blessed with some real pearls of wisdom, he told us how having good manners was so important in today’s world. Shiekh Al Hilli was really kind to translate everything for us word by word. We were all later given an individual opportunity to meet and greet him along with any wishes and desires that we wished to share with him. Personally, I felt extremely privileged to have been given this glorious opportunity, one that I will cherish for a lifetime. Alhamdulillah!  

At that same night, Shiekh Mohammed Al Hilli gave us an enlightening majalis about Imam Ali (as) in the Haram of Imam Ali (as), it was captivating. After which he took us around on a tour around the Haram and told us how many scholars of impeccable knowledge were buried right there and some informative history and stories of each of them.


The next morning, we went to visit Prophet Hud and Prophet Saleh at Wadi As Salaam, which was again a moment of deep reflection after Shiekh Mohammed Al Hilli delivered the whole concept of death, and how we need to work towards it and prepare ourselves for it.

It is something that we don’t occasionally think about, it is just something we may think will happen, but not now. But it is indeed an inevitable reality that one may have to face sooner than they think. It was just a serious reality check to be listening about death right in the middle of a cemetery, our final destination. InshaAllah!

Later that afternoon, we went to visit Masjid Hanana, where the heads of the martyrs of Karbala were kept for some time, an area full of emotions and grief. After that, we went to visit Kumail ibn Ziyad, this was a major goosebumps moment for me, for me as we were at the very resting place of the man who conveyed Dua Al Kumayl to us from Imam Ali (as) the very dua that we recite every Thursday night. What a beautiful dua it is indeed! Here again, Sayed Ammar Nakshawani gave us an informational lecture, about Kumayl Ibn Ziyad, and left us with a question, Where were all the companions of Imam Ali (as), like Kumayl, Qambar, at Karbala? Where were they? And you begin to think yes! Exactly, where were they? Well, that is something we could all look into. InshaAllah!


Somewhere before Maghrib, we headed towards Masjid Al Sahla, on a Tuesday evening, about which traditions mention that Imam Az Zamana (atfs) visits Masjid Al Sahla on a Tuesday evening. This is one experience, I will never have enough words for, or rather I will never be able to word it rightly. It was very difficult for me to believe that we were blessed to be right there, just right where the Imam (atfs) would come and live when he reappears InshaAllah. I will never and never be able to fully express and deliver what I felt on that day there. It was beyond belief, and I felt truly obliged as I pledged my allegiance to the Imam of our time (atfs) not in words, but by heart. Alhamdulillah.


The following morning was really heavy on the heart, we had to bid farewell to Imam Ali (as) and proceed towards Karbala, as much as my heart wanted to rush towards Abbabdillah (as), at the same time I wanted to be next to Imam Ali (as) as well. Shiekh Al Hilli gave a beautiful farewell, along with it we pledged out our allegiances towards the Ahlulbayt (as). Here I would like to mention something that truly broke my heart, and shattered me completely, is that whenever Shiekh would mention Lady Fatema (as) near the Shrine of Imam Ali (as), I would just remember the site of Madinah and how we have no idea where her grave is. How we would love to be visiting her as well, just like we visit the rest of her family. That thought, of Lady Fatema (as) near the Shrine of Imam Ali (as) just chokes you up with emotions you can never really pen down. It is just this feeling for both helplessness and pain. Yet again, words don’t do any justice here. But that feeling is heartbreaking.

We bid farewell to Imam Ali (as) and boarded our buses to move towards Karbala.


One of the major things I thoroughly enjoyed on this trip, was the constant question-answer sessions. I mean, it was just awesome to have both Shiekh Al Hilli and Sayed Ammar Nakshawani available at all times to answer the very basic of your questions. Some of the questions were brilliant and the answers left me like, wow!! It was pretty interesting to know various things at all times. We had one such session with Shiekh Al Hilli on the bus to Karbala, and it was some important information he gave out there, from topics of permissible food to cleanliness and other various subjects. Likewise, when Sayed Ammar Nakshawani had graced our bus with his presence on the way to Kufa, the topics varied, from free will to evolution and other topics. Even the independent question-answer sessions in the hotel and otherwise were extraordinary. So much to learn from and reflect upon. SubhanAllah!


Our buses stopped 3 km away from Karbala, where we prayed Zohr Asr, and walked our way in. Now this experience was everything. Bless my heart! With some very talented reciters reciting some exceptionally melancholic eulogies in both English and Urdu. I am not too sure how others were feeling then, but I was numb. You know that feeling when you really really want something, and when it finally happens, you just go numb with happiness or numb with gratefulness. You just can’t seem to place yourself or believe that this is actually happening! That was me.


As we were walking, my friend tapped me and said, “Look, we can see the Shrine of Hazrat Abbas (as)!!”. I looked, and asked, “Where?”. She again said, “Look there! Right there!”. And I saw it! AbuFadhlil Abbas (as) right there before me. Right there. I couldn’t wait to cover this distance and be right next to him. But before that, I made my 3 wishes. It is said that when you see the dome of AbuFadhlil Abbas (as) for the first time you should ask for three wishes. I just asked one wish three times, “Call me again O’ Abbas! Call me every year O’ Abbas! Call me frequently O’ Abbas!”. That’s it, I wished for everything I would ever need. Everything, I asked for it all. No wish is rejected by Hazrat Abbas (as)! I am positive. I am sure I am going to see him sooner than soon, InshaAllah!


We walked towards the Shrines, along with some heartbreaking recitations. I didn’t cry, I couldn’t cry. I was in disbelief, in spite of being there and knowing that I was there. I could feel it but I couldn’t cry. We walked. I walked with all the guilt in my eyes, a lump in my throat and then I saw the Haram of AbuFadhlil Abbas (as). It was there, right there before me. And then the reciter recites one of my most favorite nohas by Mir Hassan Mir, “Abbas tera haqq hai, zamana tujhe roye, Jab shaam o seher, Fatema Zahra (as) tujhe roye.” (Abbas it is your right that the world laments you, when night and day Lady Fatema Zahra (as) laments for you.)

That’s it, the realization hit me, and I was there, consciously, totally! I was there. These lines shook me to actuality.


Then, we walked towards Bainul Haramain, and there Sheikh Al Hilli again gave us a beautiful lecture, of where we are standing, that’s where realization hit me again, slightly harder this time. It was just so incredible! I couldn’t believe my eyes as to what I was seeing as I set my eyes upon the Haram of Imam Al Hussain (as). That was the very moment as the Shiekh spoke and recited the Ziyarah I wept and cried for the very reason, that I was extremely thankful to be invited and totally undeserving. After all, I had done, after all the mistakes, the feeling to stand there was very profuse and overwhelming. Then we turned towards AbuFadhlil Abbas (as), and there again, my heart cried profusely. My soul finally felt at home, is all I can write. To think about this moment, it is so personal and so full of emotion that as much I consult any thesaurus around, none will be able to exactly describe how I felt, and how I feel about it even now. Only Imam (as) knows, and Abufadhil (as) knows. Only they know.


That very evening Sheikh Al Hilli gave us a very descriptive history of the Shrines and how it has come around triumphant to be safe and look the way it does today for us. Later, we went inside and saw the dharihs of other personalities that are buried alongside Imam Al Hussain (as), both his sons Baby Ali Asghar (as) and Ali Akbar (as) are buried right next to him. All the other Shohada are buried near him. His friend and companion Habib bin Mazahir is buried a little away from him as well. Imam Musa ibn Jafar’s (as) son Ibrahim Ibn Musa is also buried in the same Shrine. The area where Imam Hussain (as) was martyred has been preserved as well with a dharih put around it. Very heart-rending.

The following days were each special, with each personal visit to the Shrines. Each had its own moment, each had its own memory.


On Thursday night, we had a mesmerizing recitation of Dua Al Kumayl, after which we had a superbly gripping majalis by Sayed Ammar Nakshawani, sitting in the land of Karbala and listening to him there was an experience on another level altogether. Later, after the majalis we had Nohakhawaan Mir Hassan Mir recite some heartbreaking recitations and matam. What an event!


On Friday evening, we were given a brief lecture on the Imams and revered personalities whom we were going to visit the next day at Samarra, Balad, and Kadhmain. The more I heard, the more I realized how important these Imams were, and what great personalities I was about to go and visit. The personalities I had heard about, read about, the very people who gave their lives to give us the Islam that we have and that we preach today. Sayed Ammar gave us a lecture and a little revision on who were we visiting, a bit of their history. It gave us a vibe, a push, a moment to prepare ourselves as to who we were about to visit.


The next morning was an early start, we boarded our buses and head off to Samarra first. The journey was beautiful, with some lovely views to look at. When we were finally there, the area around the Shrine of Imam Ali Al Hadi (as) and Imam Hassan Al-Askari (as) is very heartbreaking. The area around is all destroyed, it just shatters your heart as to how much these Imams have endured during their lifetime and how much they still endure while they lay at rest. But when you later see the Shrine and begin to walk towards it to witness how beautifully it has been rebuilt again after all that it has been through, you realize that no matter how many times they shall try to demolish us, we will rise again, even better, even stronger than before. SubhanAllah!


After you visit the Shrine there, there is a place underground, downstairs, it is the spot where Imam Al Mahdi (atfs) went into occultation. It is a very spiritual spot. I remember not wanting to leave the place, in fact, I came out of the area and went all the way back again because the way I felt there, I have never felt something like that in my entire life. It was very sacred.


We began our journey towards Balad after Samarra, and of course, again, it was a wonderful feeling being there as well to visit Sayed Mohammed. It was beautiful. The Shrine, the feeling, everything was indescribable.


From Balad, we made our way towards Kadhmain. I had dozed off on the way, and when I opened my eyes and saw the two beautiful domes, I was left with this feeling in my heart which I can’t put in words. My attachment towards Imam Musa Al Kadhim (as) has been incredibly special. He makes a very important period in the Imamat, which helped me find my way towards the truth, Alhamdulillah. On the other hand Imam Al Jawad (as), again I have no place to you describe the kind of position he holds in history and how much of him I have been in awe of. MashAllah!

It was an absolute honor for me to be able to visit the Shrine at Kadhmain, I didn’t want to leave, my heart was aching deeply when I made my way out to return towards Karbala. I sincerely hope and wish, that Imams of Samarra and Kadhmain call me for visitation again soon, Insha Allah! Ya Rab!


The last day of our trip was the most painful and saddening, as we visited all the sites of the battle of Karbala. We started with sitting near the water end and remembering Hazrat Abbas (as) and how he represents the word loyalty. How AbuFadhlil Abbas (as) was faithful towards his brother till the very end. It breaks your heart while seeing the cold water as to how AbuFadhlil Abbas (as) must have refrained from it. It shows the enormous amount of love and dedication he had towards Imam Al Hussain (as).

Another lesson here, loyalty.


Then we visited two of the saddest sites of this entire trip. The maqam of Imam Hussain’s (as) sons, Ali Akbar (as) and Baby Ali Asghar (as). These sites are a bit far away from each other and deep within the market. Trust me if I ever go alone I would never be able to find them. But of course, the people around in Karbala can always guide you, they are extremely kind and helpful. When we arrived here, the whole atmosphere changed. Each one of us couldn’t hold back our tears, grief surrounded our hearts. It was super emotional, with all the poetry being recited, Sayed Ammar Nakshawani telling us what happened there on the day of Karbala. It was again something I can’t really put into words. I remember feeling about those two personalities unlike I have ever felt before. It was just enormously heartbreaking.


From there we went to the place where the tents of Imam Al Hussain’s (as) camps were, where the entire Ahlulbayt (as) resided on those nights of Muharrum. It has been made into a beautiful masjid, with the different places of different personalities marked with a dharih made upon them. Absolutely stunning and heartbreaking at the same time. There as well Shiekh Al Hilli gave us a brief lecture on what happened at these places on those nights of Muharrum. The line that shook me completely was, “So, you can see, they were praying on this side, and there was music playing on the other side.” Alhamdulillah, it changed something inside me. Alhamdulillah!


Some of us had to leave early the next morning, so we had a little celebration and farewell that night, with some lovely manqabats and poetry and an after question-answer session which was mindblowing. Again a series of topics were addressed by Shiekh Al Hilli and Sayed Ammar Nakshawani wonderfully as always.


There were goodbyes and praises echoing all across the room, as I made my way towards the Haram to bid the toughest ever goodbye of my life to Imam Al Hussain (as) and his brother AbuFadhlil Abbas (as).  


There we go, the most wonderful week of my life was over in no time. And now when I am sitting here after a week reflecting on everything, I feel amazed at how much I have grown over this trip. In terms of knowledge, in terms of as a person, in terms of my spirituality and how I feel towards my faith and my religion. It has all changed for better and more. Not only that, I left from there with some great friends, knowing a dozen people, meeting some really nice people, and had some fantastic conversations over this time. Of course along with having the opportunity to speak with Sayed Ammar Nakshawani about various things, the man who is surely responsible for all the inspiration that brings me here today. Yes, I am totally a fangirl!  


Initially, before I went, I was of the lookout that many people have, that okay we did Ziyarah, it’s ticked off. Now let’s move on to the next thing on the list. I always wondered how people could go for Ziyarah every year, or sometimes even more than once a year. I was of the belief that once is enough Alhamdulillah. But now when I look back and think about it here right now at this moment, I feel I really need this every year. InshaAllah, if I am blessed I would love to go and visit every time, and each time, as much as I can. InshaAllah! I just want to quote a line from Ammar Nashed’s poetry here, “Send me to Karbala, leave me there!”


Going back to what I mentioned initially, that is going to Ziyarah really about waiting for an invitation? Or is it about devotion? Okay. So here is my theory. I can be wrong, I would love to know what you think about this in the comments below. Please do let me know.


Now we all have friends, we all have family and many people who we know. Do you get invited by all of them? No, right?

Exactly, my point. We get invited only by those, whom we truly love, we regularly communicate with, we truly care about, we constantly follow up on, we keep in touch with our every aspect of our lives.

Now, let’s look at the other side, what if you get invited by someone you don’t really wish to visit. Would you go? Would you make an effort to spend all that money to go and visit them? Would you take the trouble to go and see them? No, again right?


In my conclusion, as much Ziyarah surely happens with an invitation, but that is not the only thing that makes it happen. Those personalities see your devotion towards them. How much you give, how much you communicate, how much you care, how much supplicate to be with them! It all goes hand in hand, your devotion brings an invitation.

Of course, sometimes I feel the Infalliables also see the potential within, and then its flipped, the invitation comes first and then comes devotion. Surely!


Allah’s (swt) mercy is huge, and surely He listens. I pray from the bottom of my heart, that whoever is reading this, May He bless you and every lover with an invitation to His house, His Prophet’s city, a visitation towards his Ahlulbayt (as) sooner than soon, InshaAllah.


Thank you for reading!

God bless you!


Asalaam Walaik Ya Rasulullah (saww)! 

Under his dome, today I wish to stand,The man who blessed this Earth’s land. 
He was sent down as a mercy, to the entire mankind,

He taught us to be all good, and all kind. 
Makkah was blessed with his birth,

But there he was cursed and treated like dirt.
Medinah embraced him and his message,

Became an abode for him and his entire lineage. 
Today my eyes weep when I see that same Medinah, all dull and dark,

On his Birthday there are no lights and no spark!
They say it isn’t allowed to celebrate his birthday,

They say, it is not “Islamic” to celebrate the coming of the Islam, that we have today.
But we send our Salaams and Salawaat towards you, 

through the happiness of this heart,

We will never forget to honor you,

till from this world we depart.
Asalaam Walaik Ya Rasulullah (saww)!

Asalaam Walaik Ya Habibullah!


Everything is Hussain,Hussain is everything!

Everything we have is from Hussain (as),Everything we need is Hussain,

Everything is Hussain,

Hussain is everything!
From the beginning of my day,

To its very end,

It all belongs to him.
All my happiness,

All these comforts,

Are all because of him.
Everything is Hussain,

Hussain is everything!
From what I have,

To what I desire,

It all belongs to him. 
All my dreams,

All my aspirations,

Are all rightly timed, because of him.
Everything is Hussain,

Hussain is everything!
From my every breath,

To my death,

It all belongs to him.
All my heartbeats,

All of my flesh and blood,

Are all there, because of him.
Everything is Hussain,

Hussain is everything!
From what inspires me,

To what I thrive for,

It all belongs to him.
All my good actions,

All my reflections,

Are all because of him.
Everything is Hussain,

Hussain is everything!
My life is his,

My death is his,

It all belongs to my Master, Abbabdillah (as),
I say this everyday,

and I mean it when I say,
“Everything is Hussain,

Hussain is everything!”


O’ Medinah! How oppressed are you?

O’ Medinah!How oppressed are you? And under whose hand?
While millions flock together to Karbala’s land,

Buried deep are lonely treasures lost, in your sand.
O’ Medinah!

How oppressed are you? And under whose hand?
The man who brought this religion, lies under a shade in your land,

While his sons lie under the sun’s blade, while it burns your sand. 

How oppressed are you? And under whose hand?
Millions cry today, from far away lands,

But not many can visit to cry Hassan (as) on your sand. 
O’ Medinah!

How oppressed are you? And under whose hand?


O’ Sajjad! How do you walk, with so much pain?

O’ Sajjad (as).How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?
Your eyes have witnessed, a terrible tragedy,

It wasn’t one, but a whole massacre of your progeny,

You walk, with your tears, leaving your eyes as you are thirsty!

O’ Sajjad.

How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?
My heart cries when I hear your story,

For Karbala, continues on Shaam’s journey,

How can one comprehend your pain totally?

O’ Sajjad.

How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?
As you watch Zainab (as) being tortured tremendously,

As you see the kids, made to walk mercilessly,

As you watch Yazid torture each one of you ridiculously,

O’ Sajjad.

How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?
While Medinah doesn’t remain the same for you anymore,

The city that held Islam’s meaning and core,

As they have now hurt Islam, and left it sore,

O’ Sajjad.

How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?
You feed the people, for you can’t see anyone hungry or without water,

You ask if the animal was given water before they were slaughtered,

All these gestures and questions, help us understand your pain only to a quarter,

O’ Sajjad.

How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?
When death approached you, you couldn’t take the comfort,

Baqir (as) tried to hug you, but nothing could soothe you, no effort,

For even then you remember your father being hurt,

O’ Sajjad.

How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?
Your pain, none can understand,

For you lived a whole tragedy none can comprehend,

Today, Salaams and Salutations towards you we send,

For in Jannatul Baqi still lies Hussain’s sent.
O’ Sajjad.

How do you walk, with so much pain?

How do you walk, without Hussain?


Why does one recommend Ziyarat Ashura to keep away from sins?

This Muharrum was very spiritually uplifting, with the amount of knowledge that was delivered across different majalis, in different cities and countries. It felt like an ocean of knowledge was flowing through, and Alhamdulillah we managed to fill in few glasses of information if not more. But, yet again, thanks to YouTube for making it easier for us to access the lectures as conveniently as possible.


I was listening to a majlis from Al Akbar Foundation live from London, and the speaker is one of my favorites, Sheikh Usama Al-Atar. I happened to tune in in the middle of it, due to my weak mathematics on time conversions, but I joined in, just in time, when the Shiekh was giving out, a to-do list, as in things to do to keep away from sins.

Just then one of the things he mentioned was, recite Ziyarat Ashura, I kept wondering for a while, as to why would he ask us to recite a Ziyarat of an Imam which happens to be a recitation to send Salaams and Salutations upon him.

He further went to state other things such as, praying Salah at the start of every prayer time, praying Salatul Layl reading the Quran, reading Dua Al Ahad/Faraj, these are things which have always heard growing up, and you know how and why they will protect you.

Of course, I had complete trust in him when he said that, and I was aware that there is definitely some wisdom behind what he is saying because anything and everything that is related to the Imams of the Ahlulbayt has a benefit for us as human beings.

Also, as I was already reciting it during the first 10 days of Muharrum, I continued to do the same.


When I recited it after that day, I went on to notice something beautiful which left me slightly dumbfounded, I came across this line (I read this line/rather the entire Ziyarat almost every day, but never gave it a thought as much as I did that day.),

“O my Allah, I seek nearness to You today in this frame of mind, cutting off all links with them for the rest of my life, denouncing them because of my love for Your Prophet and his children, peace be on him and them.”


This pushed me to think and realize; now I know why this was recommended to recite in order to stay away from sins, because, throughout the Ziyarat, we are constantly breaking ties with the wrong, and begging ALLAH (swt) to strengthen our ties with the truth and the righteous, i.e. the Prophet (saww) and his family (as). This was one of my most important and major reflections of the year.

SubhanAllah, this was something so beautiful.

It has undoubtedly changed my life from now onwards.


SubhanAllah, Ziyarat Ashura, is definitely more than just a supplication to send Salaams and Salutations towards the Imam (as) and his companions.

It does more to your life; even if you have nothing to ask for, it just beautifully transforms you on a spiritual level.


Please recite whenever you can possibly, if not otherwise, at least, recite it for the remaining days till Arbaeen, iA!


In need of duas,

-Insiyah Abidi


O’ Zainab! Give me some of your patience.

O’ Zainab (as)! Give me some of your patience,

as this world tears me apart. 
There is no peace in this heart,

there is pain, in each part,

O’ Zainab, from where do I start?

As happiness from me has begun to depart. 

As this world tears me apart. 

O’ Zainab!

Give me some of your patience.
I watch it all fall apart,

I stand and cry, with my hopeless heart.

While I see you thanking Allah, with each ones depart,

as I mourn and cry, for your heart.

As this world tears me apart. 

O’ Zainab!

Give me some of your patience.
You walked to Karbala, with all your heart,

I don’t know how you remained strong, till the end from the start,

But I ask you, where did you find beauty, in which part?

While it was all falling apart?

As this world tears me apart. 

O’ Zainab!

Give me some of your patience.
As this dunya tortures my each time,

I recall your pain, every time,

It soothes me down with time,

for you remained patient during the worst of time,

I remember you, all the time,

and then in my heart I call each time,

As this world tears me apart. 

O’ Zainab!

Give me some of your patience.


Your silence, we will remember. 

You will forget,but we will always remember. 
Your silence, when he came as a stranger to Karbala.

Your silence, when he was left thirsty for 3 days.

Your silence, when his family was massacred.

Your silence, when he carried every dead body alone. 

Your silence, when he asked water for a 6 month old & a spear was pierced in his neck. 

Your silence, when he fell.

Your silence, when he was wounded. 

Your silence, when he was beheaded.

Your silence, when his family was paraded.
But, we will always weep,

for the silence that prevailed, 

when he called out loud,

“Is there anyone to help us?”
And today, the silence that hurts us the most,

is when we reply to that call with, 

“Labbaik Ya Hussain (as)!”

and this time, you mock us with your silence. 
You loved the Prophet you say,

you follow his every way. 

you know the Islam which you follow night and day,

it would have been completely fabricated and destroyed,

had Hussain (as) not been on Ashura day. 
You have the audacity to tell me that you fast because the Prophet (as) did!

Come here, I will tell you where the Prophet was on that day,

he was at Karbala, lamenting on his grandson’s day. 

he was at Karbala, lamenting on his grandson’s day. 


“Is there anyone to help us?”

One call,

for all,

on the land of Karbala,

that breaks the heart,

more than any word,

more than any line,
“Is there anyone to help us?”
What has Islam come to?

Where has it been lead to?

That the grandson of the Prophet calls,

“Is there anyone to help us?”
50 years later what happened?

After the Prophet (saww) what happened?

That the grandson of the Prophet calls,

“Is there anyone to help us?”
How did the truth become so sad and alone?

How did false make its way to the throne?

That the grandson of the Prophet calls,

“Is there anyone to help us?”
All the companions are gone,

All the brothers and sons are gone,

A 6 month old is gone,

What happened to the ummah that loved it’s Prophet?

That the grandson of the Prophet calls,

“Is there anyone to help us?”
The orphans are wailing.

The women are wailing.

They walk as captives,

towards Shaam wailing,
But Zaynab has just one question on her mind,

It echoes beneath and kills her each time,

That how low did people get in a span of years,

That the grandson of the Prophet called,

“Is there anyone to help us?”
Almost 1400 years later,

I see the streets of Karbala filled later,

Each cries, each martyr later,

One call makes them wail and hit themselves later,

with one question on the back of their mind each day,

that why no one replied with, “Labbaik Ya Hussain (as) then,

When the grandson of the Prophet called,

“Is there anyone to help us?”