Home » History » Prominent Scholars on the Martyrdom of Imam Husayn ibn ‘Ali

Prominent Scholars on the Martyrdom of Imam Husayn ibn ‘Ali

“Of that gallant band, male and female knew that the enemy forces around were implacable, and were not only ready to fight, but to kill. Denied even water for the children, they remained parched under the burning sun and scorching sands, yet not one faltered for a moment. Husayn marched with his little company, not to glory, not to power of wealth, but to a supreme sacrifice, and every member bravely faced the greatest odds without flinching.” – Dr. K. Sheldrake

“If Husayn had fought to quench his worldly desires, as alleged by certain Christian critics, then I do not understand why his sister, wife, and children accompanied him. It stands to reason therefore, that he sacrificed purely for Islam.” – Charles Dickens

“The best lesson which we get from the tragedy of Karbala is that Husain and his companions were rigid believers in God. They illustrated that the numerical superiority does not count when it comes to the truth and the falsehood. The victory of Husayn, despite his minority, marvels me!” – Thomas Carlyle

“In a distant age and climate, the tragic scene of the death of Husayn will awaken the sympathy of the coldest reader.” – Edward Gibbon

“Imam Husayn uprooted despotism forever, till the Day of Resurrection. He watered the dry gardens of freedom with a surging wave of his blood, and indeed he awakened the sleeping Muslim nation. If Imam Husayn had aimed at acquiring the worldly empire, he would not have traveled the way he did. Husayn weltered in blood and dust for the sake of truth. Verily, therefore, he becomes the foundation of the Muslim creed ‘La Ilaha Il-lallah,’ meaning, there is no deity but God.” – Sir Mohammad Iqbal

“A reminder of that blood-stained field of Karbala, where the grandson of the Apostle of God fell, at length, tortured by thirst, and surround by the bodies of his murdered kinsmen, has been at anytime since then, sufficient to evoke, even in the most lukewarm and the heedless, the deepest emotion, the most frantic grief, and an exaltation of spirit before which pain, danger, and death shrink to unconsidered trifles.” – Browne’s History of Persia

“There is of course the physical suffering in martyrdom, and all sorrow and suffering claim our sympathy, —- the dearest, purest, most outflowing sympathy that we can give. But there is a greater suffering than physical suffering. That is when a valiant soul seems to stand against the world; when the noblest motives are reviled and mocked; when truth seems to suffer an eclipse. It may even seem that the martyr has but to say a word of compliance, do a little deed of non-resistance; and much sorrow and suffering would be saved; and the insidious whisper comes: “Truth after all can never die.” That is perfectly true. Abstract truth can never die. It is independent of man’s cognition. But the whole battle is for man’s keeping hold of truth and righteousness. And that can only be done by the highest examples of man’s conduct – spiritual striving and suffering enduring firmness of faith and purpose, patience and courage where ordinary mortals would give in or be cowed down, the sacrifice of ordinary motives to supreme truth in scorn of consequence. The martyr bears witness, and the witness redeems what would otherwise be called failure. It so happened with Husayn. For all were touched by the story of his martyrdom, and it gave the deathblow to the politics of [Umayyad] Damascus and all it stood for.”–Abdullah Yusuf Ali


1 Comment

  1. Hasan says:

    Assalamu alaikum!

    The article “Prominent Scholars on the Martyrdom of Imam Husayn ibn ‘Ali” is very interesting. I’m looking for such quotations.

    But I have the problem, that only for some there are references from literature. The most of them are just cited without any reference of the sources. I miss references for Chares Dickens (in his case sometimes you can find “Charles Dickens’ Miscellanies, p. 61” – but it is not precise enough, it’s surely any collection like Bentleys Miscellany with its many volumes. I still didn’t find it)), Mahatma Gandhi and others. I guess that these quotations are copied many times and are to find in the internet because of that many times. I also have found quotations of Nelson Mandela and Victor Hugo in the internet – but as usual without any references. In Nelson Mamdela’s case I contacted with the South African Nelson Mandela Foundation – but they cannot help me. They don’t know the quotation and it is not to find in the biography Long Walk to Freedom at all. …

    My hope is that aybody has more informations or possibilities of research to find the sources of all the quotations. They are important for argumentation and gaining knowledge.

    If you cannot help me please could you give me any advices or addresses/URL for further contacts.

    Assalamu alaikum!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: