Why Muharram is the chosen one? It is because Hussain (R.A.), grandson of Muhammad (S.A.W.), was martyred in the Battle of Karbala. The battle was fought between Yazid of Umayyad and Hussain of Banu Hashim. Shias commemorate the battle and heavily mourn on martyrdom of Hussain (R.A.). So you expect more clashes and bashes in Muharram. But to whom you blame? Sunnis or Shias? Both of them or none of them?
Being Sunni, I have no business with Shias but what subjects both communities to boil each other’s blood and hear insults to the prophets, caliphs and wives of Muhammad (S.A.W.) from one side? The answer lies precisely towards the dirty politics of the West. Remember the 1979 Shia Revolution in Tehran? When Pahlavi dynasty met an end after Mohammad Raza Shah Pahlavi left Iran in Jan.1979 defeated by the demonstrators and followers of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. If anyone remembers, Pahlavi dynasty was backed by United States. Khomeini arrived Iran on Air France Boeing 747 the very next month with grand return and welcomed by his millions of supporters.
Since then, sectarian tensions began to boil in South Asia and Gulf countries. The impact was huge and critical. In non-Muslim world, Islamic ideologies and revolution were on heavy talks. Khomeini was the name to whom the world began thinking that the super-power of world control might lose balance under the cradle of attorney since Hitler’s impact. With the overthrow of monarchies, it was a heavy alarm for fellow neighbors where Sunnis were/are dominating and Shias were/are in minorities. Entered USSR and Afghan war began. US-backed Osama bin Laden was their Uncle Sam in Afghanistan. Followed Iran-Iraq war, tag-team partners in this war directly/indirectly were Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, France, UK, USSR and with no surprise United States. Oil became a ‘mermaid on a shore’, swam by all infected and addicted countries governed and schemed by the masters from the West.
Sectarian politics did built tensions and confrontations in Pakistan as yearly casualties were immense. Never tolerable, extremist groups did target the places of worships in order to bring the heated battle back on track. Last decade met more severe blood-bargaining clashes after US-invasion of Iraq and disappearance of Saddam Hussain in 2003. That was where political Sunni-Shia clashes re-awoke. King Abdullah II of Jordan quoted, “If pro-Iran parties or politicians dominate the new Iraqi government, a new ‘crescent’ of dominant Shia movements or governments stretching from Iran to Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon, could emerge.”
So my take is that Iraq invasion is where in 21st century, Sunni-Shia wrestle mania began and political conspiracy let to other countries to flame fire between the two. The very same year, Shia cleric Yasser Al-Habib of Kuwait was arrested months later and sentenced to one year’s imprisonment by the Kuwaiti government on charges of cursing Abu Bakr (R.A.), Umar (R.A.), and Ayesha (R.A.). Seven years later in 2010, his citizenship was revoked by the Kuwaiti government when he brought huge Sunni-Shia outcry by calling Ayesha (R.A.) as ‘Enemy of God’.
Sectarian political unrest spread to Bahrain, Lebanon, Yemen and now Syria. And now the understanding is that killing each other in the name of Islam will down pardon the consequences. Mourning turns into frowning; and sponsors and agents of the riots are enjoying the overwhelming corruption of sectarian unrest.
Demographically, Shias in Pakistan’s 180-million-population are mere 20%. Many prominent figures in this country follow Shia faith. Political biggies like Mohammad Ali Bogra, Khawaja Nazimuddin, Haider Abbas Rizvi, Faisal Saleh Hayat, Faisal Raza Abidi, Zulfiqar Mirza, Qaim Ali Shah; and artists like Sadequain, Jon Elia, Rahat Kazmi, Talat Hussain, Abida Parveen are famous shia personalities. Unarguably the biggest name, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the creator of Pakistan, was Ismaili Shia.
Before existence of Pakistan, the Shias can be traced back in centuries, even in Moghul eras. Qazi Nurullah Shustari was the most prominent Shia scholar of Moghul era. In Akbar’s time, he was appointed Chief Qazi of the Moghul Empire due to attaining immense trust and respect of Akbar. In Jahangir’s time, things went worse for him as his rivals in Jahangir’s court were in powers to wreck his position. A fatwa was passed declaring him heretic and for his beliefs and faith on Shi’ism. He was executed on Jahangir’s words at almost 70 and was called ‘Shaheed-e-Salis’ (third martyr) after Muhammad Ibn Makki and Zainuddin al Amili respectively.
So what is Shia belief and faith. Very shortly, they believed Ali (R.A.) to be Muhammad (S.A.W)’s successor in the caliphate due to the fact that he was his first cousin and closest male relative as well as son-in-law. But that never happened. The Rashidun Caliphate ‘rightly guided caliphs’ was established and successors were Abu Bakr (R.A.), Umar (R.A.), Usman (R.A.) and last appointment was finally Ali (R.A.). First 3 successors are unacceptable to Shias and they actually curse them.
There other beliefs are that the Holy Quran is incomplete whereas Allah says in Surah Al-Hijr (Quran 15:9) “Indeed, it is We who sent down the Qur’an and indeed, We will be its guardian.” Shias also curse wives of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) who are considered Ummahat-ul-Momineen ‘Mothers of the Believers’. They also pray only thrice a day instead of five and their azaan ‘call to worship’ is different. When it comes to marriage, Shia have mutaa system which means temporary marriage. As the meaning clarifies, the duration of this nikah contract is agreed in advance. In brief, time limit is fixed and wife is known as temporary wife. One of critical difference which separates the Shias and from biggest understanding far from religion is the shahada ‘declaration of faith’. Their kalima is edited with additional wordings in the end ‘wa ʿalīyyun walīyyu -llāh’ which means that Ali is Allah’s wali.
Happy new year to all the Muslims (who follow words of Allah and his Last Messenger S.A.W) and the other 72 sects. There is one more sect which was introduced in a British Sitcom ‘Citizen Khan’ which was termed blasphemy and mockery over Islam specially in Pakistan.
REASONS?? It is blasphemy and mockery over Islam.
REASONS?? It is blasphemy and mockery over Islam.
(I ask again) REASONS?? It is blasphemy and mockery over Islam.
THAT’S IT?? Ahh never mind…. I found O TWADDI sect far funny than all the sects which are based on school of thoughts whose deans have rendered valuable services to the world in producing and expanding ignorance in Muslim ummah. Few of sects are in fact insects on whom you need to spray insecticide who instead of following words of Allah and his Last Messenger S.A.W., follow their revolutionaries and missionaries. These betrayers produce their own books, and lie and deceive. Spread wrong message from their beehive and indirectly attack the moral faith.
So what is the battle of O TWADDI? Before marching towards an answer, let me tell you a story stamping in East Coast in the late 70s. In NYC, there were block parties residing in Bronx, mostly African Americans. In such parties, there were plenty of DJs who used to play Soul or Funky music originated from Jamaica. So when I say Jamaica, then it is understood that thousands of Jamaican immigrants turned to NYC for livelihood. One of them was DJ Kool Herc who later in this era introduced a music genre from these soul/funky music. That was called Hip-Hop.
In the hip-hop culture, rapping was introduced which is an art of singing in a vocal style using only lyrics in rhyme. Early 80s grew more intensifying as rapping popularity increased. Competition existed not in rapping but bullying. Participants mostly black Americans entered the challenge to rap, bully and manhandle each other. One of early famous rapping challenge was between Kool Moe Dee and Busy Bee Starski back in 1981 or perhaps 1982, which Kool won. This was the beginning of battle which is known as Battle Rap.
Sooooo the battle of O TWADDI is like a battle rap where 2 rappers put-down, diss and insult each other while rapping. This battle is fought every Islamic year in the Holy month of Muharram between Sunnis and Shias. My perspective is Pakistan, oh I mean Islamic Republic of Pakistan. In rest of 11 months, there are very few incidents where disturbance between the two in the name of Islam occurs but Muharram is the month when they actually lose their temper. The hatred policy between the two has been traced for thousands of years but in Pakistan and other Islamic countries, it has heated more.
This country separated from it’s origin 66 years ago and came into existence based on theory (if I am not wrong then the only 2 countries existed on theory – other being Israel). The mission was to establish an Islamic state which unfortunately divided into many groups (few for socio.political reasons). The biggest hurdle was following an existing heritage of Sufi religion inherited from centuries-backed Hindustan. The new geographic blood adopted the same tradition and followed their peers. Till now, Islam is what your forefathers have taught you with much a probability of error. You will obey them as a disciple.
Today, your religious mind is limited. Innovations (bida’ah) are trafficked and words of Allah are mostly ignored. Peers are your messiah and parrot is the messenger of your fate. Your life is not based on your prays but the trump cards. You won’t get scare of fighting or killing your own brother but surely when a black cat cross your path. Even if you don’t believe in that superstition, you surely will make a second ‘if’. Quite bizarre to a fact to observe just how a black cat in a cricket match can make a million viewers superstitious for a second. Your ears won’t hurt when hard rock music is played but your ears will fell trauma when playing with scissor will sound you omen.
We belong to a country like many nationalities, where mostly those people argue or debate, who first of all lack knowledge. Having wisdom is the second thing but first, we are history’s greatest liars. We lie about our history, we lie about our religion. We speak like an angel as devil lies underneath. We criticize other rather than correcting them. And most bizarrely, we always get very aggressive. And for losing the temper, we pay the prize. I remember the incidents of Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoon controversy, YouTube release of movie Fitna and Quran-burning campaign from Pastor Terry Jones. When Muslims from many corners rose their voice with peaceful protest and even distributed copies of Quran at different places to show faith in humanity and proving Islam as religion of peace, the people from Pakistan side came up with some extraordinary laughing stock. They protest so rudely with anger that they began looting the malls, burn the personal properties and brought an uprising which obviously showed no sign of love for beloved Muhammad (S.A.W.)
For few months this year, British Pakistani presenter Adil Ray’s “Citizen Khan” was fired and blasted by many Muslim viewers (mostly Pakistanis) quoting the sitcom mocking Islam and Pakistan. When the program was first aired, it received almost 200 complaints and accused of being disrespectful to the Quran. Many even filed petition to prevent the program airing on BBC One. Once I had noticed a short clip of the program for the first time, I knew it and told myself that on any part of the world, where the name ‘Pakistan’ is involved will surely meet a controversy.
For me it was absolutely pathetic and simultaneously funny to see Pakistanis complaining that a British sitcom mocked their religion, the Holy book and their beloved country. How sincere and loyal they became of their faith and country!! What token of love and respect they are temporarily depicting? From where does that blasphemy and mockery came. Why digging deep and exploring the blasphemy in a British sitcom?? Instead, go and correct yourself first. Are you really loyal to your faith enough to defend?
The O TWADDI sect in 1st episode of Season II got hugely negative remarks. Many claimed that a Pakistani is shown selling his pride and making joke of his religion in front of catholic dean by creating an imaginary sect ‘firqah’ in order to make a successful attempt in his daughter’s admission. I was like “SO WHAT?”. Two things came in my mind. One, sect is already a joke for me with an understanding that all 72 sects will be thrown in hell besides one following a right path (mentioned in Sahih Hadith). Two, bitter truth is that we Pakistanis (not all of us) are international beggars and can go to any limit for begging. It is nothing new for me to see people spreading their hands in front of others. Just look at our politicians, diplomats and bureaucrats; how they beg in front of IMF, NATO and US.
The objection itself becomes a mockery when negative viewers objected that most of the cast playing Pakistani roles were actually Indians which brought the image down. This clearly showed that they knew nothing about sitcoms and movies. Actors are selected by judgment and suitability of character, not by nationality. How about Christopher Lee playing Jinnah and Mark Zubair playing Iqbal in ‘Jinnah’? How about Om Puri playing Ziaul Haq in ‘Charlie Wilson’s War’? Stop talking pathetic. If you cannot take a British humor, then go elsewhere and enjoy your local programs.
Those negative Pakistani viewers who have so much time complaining, cannot fall back and stop the bloody battle yearly fighting in Muharram. Instead, they themselves fall flat and do the same what they thought Mr. Khan was doing. Doing battle rap with each other, confusing and making your religion complicated, bringing Quran, Muhammad (S.A.W.) and Ali (R.A.) in your senseless heated arguments and killing each other simply proves that none of the party was ever correct or up to their words. All fall in same category. And blood got spilled, masjids and Hussainias got bombed, prophets and caliphs got insulted, and wives of Muhammad (S.A.W.) were abused. So that is an outstanding example you set to the whole world how peaceful you are.
Your neighbors have every right to laugh on you with the fact that fight between two different faiths are understood but killing each other under the same banner is never understood with the pre-understanding of separating from India in 1947 to establish an Islamic state. What a joke! Next Islamic royal rumble will be organized next year in early November with more casualties and mourning to come. Stay tuned…