السبت، 10 يناير، 2009

The 4th Place (or Manzil): Zurud




The 4th Place (or Manzil): Zurud


The 4th Place (or Manzil) of Imam's journey took him to Zurud. This was a small town just over the hills of Hejaz separating from the province of Najd. From here the mountains change into arid desert. At this place Imam met Zohair Ibne Qain. Zohair, until that time, was not the follower of Ahlul-bayt. He was undecided and considered himself as a person in middle, not able to decide which side was the right one. Imam saw Zohair's tent pitched in the distant and sent his emissary with a note. Zohair read the note, realized for the first time in his life that time for decision to choose the right path has arrived. Something happened to him inside that has changed his entire life. What was written in the note is not clear, but Zohair told his friends to take his wife and children back to his tribal lands, and he himself set out to join the Imam and his caravan.

Here it is important to mention that when the Imam was leaving Makka he was trying to persuade the hoards of people who wanted to come out with him, to go back to their homes. Imam was telling them that there is no reward of worldly goods at the end of the journey. But at the same time he wrote letters to some people inviting them to accompany him to the end of his journey. One of them was Zohair as mentioned above. Imam wrote another letter to his childhood friend Habib Ibn Mazahir Al-Assady in Kufa inviting to join him in his journey of destiny. Habib was an old companion of the Prophet. Some historians mention Habib's age as 82 years.

Another important point worth mentioning here is that these additional people invited by the Imam were each from different tribes of Arabia. Out of total number of 72 male warriors with the Imam, 18 were from his own family, all descendents of Abu Talib. But rest of the martyrs was from all places and all creeds, almost from all Islamic lands of that time. There were men from Sham (Syria), from Jaba el Amil (Lebanon), from Armenia, from Azerbaijan, from Yemen, Abyssinia and Egypt. It appears that Imam was taking special care that whoever is martyred with him on the Day of Ashura comes from different tribes and different lands, different culture and creed so that the message reaches all corners of the Islamic lands through their relatives and friends.




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