Lessons of Ashura
Though the day of Ashura, the 10th of Muharram and the first month of the Islamic calendar, is related to many events of historical significance, the Muslims today observe it as the day of Karbala, where on this day, Imam Hussain, the grandson of the Holy Prophet chose death to ignominy of surrender to the unjust demands of Yezid. With him perished a small but dedicated band of Muslims, including nearly all of the direct descendents of the Holy Prophet.
And since that fateful event more than 1300 years ago, the day is being observed by some in open expression of grief, and by some in quiet mourning and remembrance of the episode and prayers for the martyrs of Karbala.
But while we mourn the martyrs we feel that the day should be a day for more than just mourning. The lessons of the day, that justice shall prevail over injustice, should be internalised by all Muslims; and that injustice must be protested and Yazids, who appear in all ages and all countries, must be resisted at all costs.
This is also a day for all Muslims to vow to sink their own differences. We are pained to see the sectarian clashes, particularly in the Middle East that threatens to not only pull the countries down but also destroy the cohesiveness of Islam. We must also join hands and declare to not only abjure violence but to unite to resist those who are distorting the teachings of Islam and wreaking suffering on innocent people which does nothing to glorify the religion of peace but harm it immensely.