Issue No: 122
1st June 2012
10th Rajab 1433 A.H.
It’s blue, red and white all around!
Every where one turns the blue, red and white colours are seen on display. One sees buntings, the Union Jack and decorations set up outside homes and in public spaces fluttering majestically in the wind. Various souvenir items in form of china plates, confectionery, dresses, stationery and other articles with the theme of the royal house and colours of the Union Jack are on sale and in great demand by people. Residents in neighborhoods are out vying with each other to throw grand street parties. Huge TV screens have been set up in London and elsewhere in the U.K. to relay the morning service of thanksgiving at St Paul's Cathedral... to all this jubilation is an extra bank holiday next week on Tuesday 5th June! The list of jubilation goes on and on...
Why all this fervor?
This year Britain is celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. This marks 60 years of Queen Elizabeth II being on the throne.The Royal Family is an integral part of culture and history of the U.K. They do help to stimulate the U.K. tourist industry. They are greatly admired around the world. Against the background of the difficult economic situation and the effects of austerity measures which the country is currently undergoing, one point which becomes clearly evident is that across every age and group the royal family especially the Queen is enjoying solid popularity. The monarchy symbolised by the Queen, has been able to draw the citizens towards being united and has kindled hope towards prosperity and a better future. The year-long celebrations of the Queen’s Diamond jubilee is producing such a result. This effect, not bounded by region or ethnicity, by a leader over the citizens is amazing.
In His Magnificence, Allah SWT has blessed us with leaders to guide us towards attaining the position of closeness towards Him. These Divinely appointed leaders are in the form of the holy prophet Muhammad s.a.w.w. and the twelve Imams a.s. Through the guidance of the holy prophet the ignorance in faith and darkness of our hearts due to our sinning has been illuminated with eiman and guided towards submission to Islam – the Divine message. Whilst on the verge of slipping into the pits of hell due to disobedience to our Creator and Lord we are being offered success towards the eternal life. This is by submitting to the guidance of the two weighty things - Thaqalayn. This is to adhere to the holy Qur’an and Ahlul Bayt which will never separate from each other till they return to the holy prophet on the final day.
As a way of expressing our devotion and love to the Ahlul Bayt we have dates of significance to the lives of these leaders. These are the dates of the wiladat and wafat of Ahlul Bayt. As a community of followers of leadership by Ahlul Bayt, events are arranged to observe these occasions. The holding of ceremonies for these days of Ahlul Bayt throughout the world unites us as a community.This practice of reviving the affairs of Ahlul Bayt has been in practice for more than 1400 years. It is not the nationality, ethnicity, social, economic status or any other differences that matters. It is our unfounded love –muhabba - to these divinely appointed leaders that we recall on these days.
In some manner like the outcome of Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, it is these days of Ahlul Bayt - wiladat and wafat - which bring us all, throughout the world, to re-dedicate ourselves to the Imam and be united under the banner of the Imams. Events are arranged to observe these occasions. No effort is spared to make these events memorable ones. The programmes for these events include exhortations to mould our lives on the path of Thaqalayn. These efforts are worthy of immense reward. For the Imams have invoked prayers of blessings for those who arrange such gatherings to revive the affairs of the Ahlul Bayt.
Like the fervor for the royal celebrations present in the citizens of the U.K. and the commonwealth nations, does one, as a shia, too devotedly celebrate the days of Ahlul Bayt? Does one re-dedicate oneself in service of our Imam Az Zamaan, the Imam of our Time (A.F.)?
Wa ma tawfiqi illa billah
Fazle Abbas Datoo
Wessex Shia Ithna Asheri Jamaat