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The Tragedy – A Narration of the Saga of Karbala – A Handbook for Reciters [Abridged]


On the tenth day of the month of Muharram, fifty years after the passing of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (s), Imam Hussain (a) and a small number of family members and companions were slaughtered at the hands of the Umayyad government. They made their stance on the land of Karbala with determination and resolve. They did not waiver in the face of an army of thousands. They made that stance in the hope that their memory will bring life to a Muslim nation which was spiraling fast down the road of deviance.More than thirteen centuries have passed since. Yet every year, Muslims around the world continue to commemorate the tragedy and remember Imam Hussain’s (a) great sacrifice. Devotees from around the globe flock to his grave in Karbala to visit and supplicate. They remember the events of that bloody massacre and the valor of Imam Hussain (a) and his companions. They recite verse and prose in commemoration of that stance.Because of the great importance of the tragedy and the passion that it infused into the Muslim nation, Umayyad authorities did all they could to erase its memory. They forbade the mentioning of Imam Hussain (a), persecuted anyone who professed love to the Holy Prophet’s (s) household, and spread false ideologies that absolved them of any culpability. Despite all this, Imam Hussain’s (a) stance was engraved into the conscience of the Muslim nation. As Lady Zaynab proclaimed in the court of Yazid, “By God, you will never erase our remembrance or kill our inspiration.” The Maqtal: A Narration of the Saga of Karbala is a compilation of the events that took place in the land of Karbala and is prepared for the specific purpose of providing reciters and lecturers with a resource to use during the mourning of Ashura.

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