Congratulations on the Birthday of Imam Sajjad (AS)



Heartiest congratulations to you all on the 3rd successive day or rejoicing. Today is the 5th of Sha’ban, the birthday of the noble great-grandson of Prophet Mohammad (SAWA), the Survivor of the Tragedy of Karbala, Imam Ali ibn al-Husain Zain al-Abedin (AS).

We have prepared for you a special article in this regard as follows:

“O Allah bless Mohammad and the Progeny of Mohammad with a plenteous blessing that would make them pleased; and do justice to the right of Mohammad and the Progeny of Mohammad, with Your power and might, O Lord of all the worlds!

“O Allah, bless Mohammad and the Progeny of Mohammad, the good and the pious, the chosen ones, whose right You have made mandatory to observe, enjoining obedience to them and acknowledgement of their Wilayah (guardianship or authority)!

“O Allah, bless Mohammad and the Progeny of Mohammad and make my heart thrive with obedience to You. Do not put me to humiliation by being guilty of disobedience to You. Enable me to do kindness to those whose provision You have tightened through the plenty You have provided me with Your grace, and what You have apprised me of Your justice, and made me flourish in Your shade!

“This is the month of Your Prophet, the Chief of Your Messengers—Sha’ban, which You have enveloped in Your mercy and Your approval, the month wherein it was the practice of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and his Family, to observe, until his death, its fast and to perform devotions during its nights and days, in order to do it honour and reverence out of humility before You! O Allah, so help us in following his example with regard to it and to win his intercession!”

What you heard were phrases that inculcate in us the sense of reform and self-building from a famous supplication which the faithful recite at noon every day in the month of Sha’ban, the month associated with Prophet Mohammad (SAWA), who used to fast and observe other non-obligatory acts of worship in this month for the pleasure of God Almighty. As is clear from the wordings, the devotion to the Prophet’s progeny is compulsory for every Muslim, the lack of which is blatant disobedience of the commandments of the All-Merciful Lord. As a matter of fact, this supplication was taught to us for firming up our faith by the great-grandson of the Prophet who was born in Medina on the 5th of this month in the year 38 AH – 27 years after the Prophet’s departure from the mortal world. He was named Ali in honour of his grandfather, the Prophet’s vicegerent, Imam Ali ibn Abi Taleb (AS). As a matter of fact, he was born during the model rule of social justice of the Prophet’s righteous successor. His father was none other than the Martyr of Karbala, Imam Husain (AS), while his mother was Princess Shahrbano of Iran. He was thus a fruit of union of the noblest of Arabs and Persians that made poets of the age laud him as “Ibn al-Khiyaratayn”

As a 23-year youth, the Fourth Imam survived the heartrending tragedy of Karbala because of being bedridden with a fever that prevented him from active combat on the battlefield. His combat, or more properly Jihad, which means striving selflessly in the way of God was rather unique. It was not with swords, lances or other weapons. Nor did it involve hand-to-hand scuffles or brawls with the enemy. In fact, his Jihad was with fettered hands and feet, and despite being dragged to the courts of the tyrants with a halter around his neck, he put up a brilliant fight that shook to its very foundations the power of the usurper caliph. His speeches had a profound impact on the audience and in some cases brought tears to the eyes of hardened hearts, to the extent that the fearful Yazid ordered release of the noble captives of the Prophet’s Household. In the holy cities of Medina and Mecca, the Survivor of the Tragedy of Karbala continued his novel jihad for 34 long years, including the ten-year farcical period of Islamic history—from 64 to 73 AH—when two immorally unprincipled usurpers laid claim to the caliphate and fought with each other in the Hijaz, in Syria, and in Iraq, by shedding the blood of Muslims. These two culprits were Abdullah ibn Zubayr and Abdul-Malik bin Marwan – both of whom sworn enemies of the Prophet’s Ahl al-Bayt and hence disobedient sinners in the sight of God despite their pretensions to be Muslim.

During this period, the Prophet’s great-grandson, as the 4th divinely-decreed Imam of the Ummah, earned the epithets of Zain al-Abedin which means Ornament of the Pious, and Seyyed as-Sajedin, which means Chief of those who sincerely prostrate to God. Often he was simply called Sajjad. His supplications in the Divine Court not just focus on the principles of religion, beseeching of salvation in afterlife, and pleading of forgiveness, but also cover a wide variety of social issues including such scientific facts as the weight of light. These eloquently moving supplications which have been collected in book form as Sahifat as-Sajjadiyya, are today recited fervently by the faithful all over the globe, and have been translated in major world languages, including English. The original Arabic of these supplications is eloquent that even scholars of other denominations of Islam have become amazed and spellbound by their wise contents, forcing them to acknowledge the God-given superiority of the Prophet’s Ahl al-Bayt. This is another proof of the peerless position of the Prophet’s progeny in Islam, while there is no trace today of the tombs of the Omayyads and Abdullah ibn Zubayr, who troubled and tormented Imam Zain al-Abedin. He was indeed the picture of patience, and during the 34 years he was alive after the tragedy of Karbala, he taught Muslims the egalitarian concepts of Islam with such dynamism, by setting personal examples, that his legacy is alive and flourishing till this day. Although, the tomb of the 4th Imam, along with that of his uncle, Imam Hasan Mojtaba, son, Imam Mohammad Baqer, and grandson, Imam Ja’far Sadeq (peace upon them), have been criminally destroyed in the Baqie Cemetery of Medina by the heretical Wahhabis, his teachings reign all over the world.


Let us listen to a poem in honour of Imam Sajjad (AS) composed by Iran’s English language poet, Dr. Hassan Najafi.

O  Pilgrim! Eager is your emergence

Today you are in Imam Sajjad’s presence

Still in prayers are raised your loaded hands,

In the dust of your grave the minaret of worship stands.

In this dust, indeed, are pierced many a wound

Blood boils, in veins and in soil, one to the other bound.

The tale of worship in this dust courts the ears

Draws the pilgrims’ sad and meaningful tears,

Wisdom flows like the current of the Ganges

Your Psalms bring about in the sinners, virtuous changes,

You embody the magnanimity of spirit,

From you man gains his long lost merit.

Underneath your paces lies the virtue’s bed

You a perfect man, Infallible born, Infallible bred.

Ahead us is the lofty mountain’s weary side

Without your aid how the perils of the way be tried?

Ah! While the dust is your dilapidated shrine

Let the tribute of this poem be mine.

You: The Survivor of Karbala repose in ruined Baqie’s zone,

Bold enough to proclaim that happiest spot your own.

Imam Husain your father.

Iranian princess Shahrbano your mother

Arab and Persian, a mingled breed,

You are the embodiment of Islamic unity indeed.

Majestic countenance, fair colour, wide forehead,

Piercing eyes, well built, tall, when stood, awe spread,

If to me there is any reward

A little, a brief smile is the award.

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