The Significance of Muharram and Ashura

The Significance of Muharram and Ashura

The Significance of Muharram and Ashura

During the month of Muharram, Muslims across the world focus on increasing their acts of worship, devotion, and charity. The 10th day of Muharram, called the Day of Ashura, is one of the most important days in the Islamic calendar. This guide will not only help you learn more about the significance of Muharram but also highlight several historical events that occurred on the Day of Ashura. 

Begin the New Islamic Year with Charity

What is the significance of Muharram for Muslims? 

Besides being the first month in the Islamic lunar calendar, Muharram is one of the four sacred months for Muslims. During this month, a number of religious and historical events occurred, including the Battle of Karbala and Allah (SWT) saved the Prophet Musa (AS) and his followers. 

Sacred Month

The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Time has come back to its original state which it had when Allah created the Heavens and the Earth; the year is twelve months, four of which are sacred. Three of them are in succession; Dhul-Qa’da, Dhul-Hijja and Al-Muharram, and (the fourth being) Rajab Mudar (named after the tribe of Mudar as they used to respect this month) which stands between Jumad (ath-thani) and Sha’ban.” (Sahih al-Bukhari 4662)

Fasting During Muharram 

The Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) encouraged Muslims to fast on the 10th of Muharram (Day of Ashura). Numerous Mulims across the globe fast on this day. It is also recommended that Muslims should fast on the 9th of Muharram. (Sunni madhhabs)

“The most virtuous fasting after the month of Ramadan is Allah’s month Al-Muharram.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 740)

Importance of Ashura (10th Day of Muharram)

The meaning of Ashura is ten, and it is one counted among the most significant days in Islam. Muslims are encouraged to fast on the day of Ashura. There are many religious and historical events that contribute to the significance of 10th Muharram:

The Prophet Musa (AS) refused to submit to the corrupt, violent, and tyrannical rule of the Pharaoh of Egypt. He asked the Pharaoh to start worshiping Allah (SWT), but he did not agree. In fact, the Pharaoh of Egypt ordered his huge army to fight and destroy the Prophet Musa (AS) along with his followers. When the Pharaoh’s army was chasing them, the Prophet Musa (AS) prayed to Allah (SWT). On the day of Ashura, the Red Sea was parted by Allah (SWT) to help the Prophet Musa (AS) and his followers reach the other side of the sea safely. When they had crossed the Red Sea, the Pharaoh and his army drowned in the sea. 

Begin the New Islamic Year with Charity

Battle of Karbala: In 61 AH, during the month of Muharram, there was a battle in Karbala, Iraq. It occurred when the Prophet Muhammad’s (ﷺ) grandson, Imam Hussain (AS), did not pledge His allegiance to the tyrannical Umayyad Caliph Yazid ibn Muawiyah. Imam Hussain’s (AS) army was small and included his family and companions. On the other hand, Yazid ibn Muawiyah had a large army. Imam Hussain (AS) along with 72 members of his army were martyred by their enemies on the Day of Ashura in a brutal way. The brutal decapitation of Imam Hussain (AS) is counted among the biggest tragedies in the history of Islam. 

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Husain is from me, and I am from Husain. Allah loves whoever loves Husain. Husain is a Sibt among the Asbat.” (Jami` at-Tirmidhi 3775)

  • According to some narratives, several important events involving other Prophets also occurred on the 10th day of Muharram: 
  • Allah (SWT) forgave the Prophet Adam (AS) on the 10th of Muharram when he sought forgiveness for eating the forbidden fruit. 
  • The Prophet Yunus (AS) came out of the whale’s belly on the Day of Ashura. 
  • After the flood, the Prophet Nuh’s (AS) ark reached dry land on the 10th of Muharram. 

Many Muslims begin the first day of the New Islamic Year (1st Muharram) by reflecting on the events and achievements that took place during the previous year. It’s also the ideal time to plan for the year ahead and earn great rewards during the sacred month of Muharram. After learning more about the significance of Muharram and Ashura, we can take steps to multiply our blessings. Transparent Hands has made it more convenient than ever to do so by designing a Muharram Donation Plan. Schedule your Sadaqah and donations throughout the month with ease. 

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