The beloved son of Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh), who had a resemblance to Rasoolullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), Hazrat Sayyiduna Ali Akbar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) stood before his father in order to be allowed to go onto the battleﬁeld. With love and adoration, Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) looked towards his son and said, “For which thing should I grant you permission? Should I permit you to become a target of the enemy’s arrows or should I allow you to be cut by the enemy’s swords? Son, do not go onto the battleﬁeld. I shall go as they are thirsty for my blood. After killing me, they shall not clash with anyone else.” Sayyiduna Ali Akbar explained that he did not wish to remain alive after Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) had departed from this world and therefore, he wished to be permitted to enter Jannah and meet Rasoolullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). This was a son whose requests had never been rejected but today he was seeking permission to have his head cut off and be drenched in blood.
When Sayyiduna Ali Akbar’s insistence increased, Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) had to somehow accept the fact that he would have to permit his son to defend justice and peace on the battleﬁeld. When Sayyiduna Ali Akbar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) prepared to go onto the battleﬁeld, Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) seated him on the horse, helped him put on the steel helmet on his head, tied a belt around his waist, placed a sword around his neck and gave him the spear from his own blessed hands. The young Ali Akbar conveyed ﬁnal greetings of peace and mercy to his father and the woman who were in the camp and then proceeded to the battlefield.
This eighteen year old youth whose blessed facial features reminded people of Rasoolullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), arrived onto the battleﬁeld and looked towards the enemy lines. He raised the sword Zulfiqar and recited this verse, “I am Ali son of Hussain who is the son of Ali. We are the Ahle Bait who are closest to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).” Upon this verse of Sayyiduna Ali Akbar, every part of Karbala and every atom of the Kufa desert must have trembled but the Yazeedis, whose hearts were more harsh than stones, were not affected by these words. Sayyiduna Ali Akbar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) called out, “O oppressors! If you are thirsty for our blood then whosoever amongst you is courageous should come forth and challenge me.”
Who could have been brave enough to face this lion of Allah Ta’ala individually‘? After calling out many times but ﬁnding that no one was coming forth, Sayyiduna Ali Akbar charged forward and attacked the enemy lines. Wherever he turned towards, he would manage to scatter the enemies who would attempt to escape danger and upon every strike, he would kill the Yazeedi youth. He would attack the right wing of the army causing its organization to become chaotic as every soldier would run for his life then he would attack the left wing, causing its lines to be disorganized and unstructured. At other times, he would move into the heart of the enemy (the centre) where he would display such great talent that he would defeat many of the enemies. The great bold brave warriors from the Yazeedi side were defeated and many were disheartened. It was not the attack of a Hashmi lion but moreover, it was the fury of Allah Ta’ala, which was descending upon these Yazeedi tyrants.
Fighting in this scorching heat on a hot desert made Sayyiduna Ali Akbar restless due to thirst. He returned and said to Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) “Father, thirst!” Surely if Sayyiduna Ali Akbar was to be given a glass of water, he would defeat the entire Yazeedi army. Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) witnessed the severe thirst of his son and with his blessed hands, wiped the face of Sayyiduna Ali Akbar and placed his ring in the mouth of Sayyiduna Ali Akbar. Thereafter, he said, “Son, do not worry. The time for your saturation is near. Soon you shall drink such water from the well of Kauthar that you shall never be troubled by thirst again.”
From the words of his father, Sayyiduna Ali Akbar received some consolation. Thereafter, he went onto the battleﬁeld and exclaimed, “Is there any contender?” Amr Ibn Sa’d said to the warrior, Tariq Ibn Sheeth, that it was shameful to see that a young man was standing alone on the battleﬁeld, waiting for someone to ﬁght against him whilst there were thousands of warriors on the other side who were reluctant to attack him. When he ﬁrst came onto the battleﬁeld, this young man called out and when no one came to fight against him, he moved forward and attacked the army, defeating its strongest warriors. Ibn Sa’d expressed his astonishment at the fact that Sayyiduna Ali Akbar was hungry and thirsty as well as tired due to ﬁghting for so long in the blazing heat but in spite of this, he was inviting someone to ﬁght with him but no one was prepared to stand against him. Ibn Sa’d said, “Shame on your claim of bravery. If you have the ability then go onto the battleﬁeld and kill him. If you manage to accomplish this, I promise that I shall help you to be appointed as the governor of Mosul by Ibn Ziyaad.”
Tariq charged towards Sayyiduna Ali Akbar due to his desire for becoming a governor and as soon as he reached Sayyiduna Ali Akbar, lbn Sheeth attacked him but Sayyiduna Ali Akbar defended himself skilfully and stabbed Tariq in the chest with such force that the spear went through his stomach and came out his back causing him to fall off his horse. When Amr Ibn Tariq saw his father being killed in this manner, he furiously arose and attacked Sayyiduna Ali Akbar with one strike. Sayyiduna Ali Akbar defeated him. Talha lbn Tariq then attacked Sayyiduna Ali Akbar in order to avenge the deaths of his father and brother. Sayyiduna Ali Akbar sent him to the grave as well. Sayyiduna Ali Akbar’s awe made the entire Yazeedi army quiver.
Ibn Sa’d then sent a famous warrior, Misraa’ Ibn Ghalib, in order to compete against Sayyiduna Ali Akbar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh). Misraa’ stretched his spear and wished to attack him but Sayyiduna Ali Akbar broke his spear into two pieces with his sword and thereafter, he struck Misraa’ on the head with his sword in such a manner that Misraa’ fell onto the ground, separated into two parts. No one now dared to stand before Sayyiduna Ali Akbar individually. Ibn Sa’d ﬁnally sent Muhkam Ibn Tufail in the company of one thousand horsemen in order to collectively attack Sayyiduna Ali Akbar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh). These unfortunate individuals surrounded Sayyiduna Ali Akbar and attacked him. Sayyiduna Ali Akbar retaliated and continued to kill many of his enemies but his entire body was wounded due to the continuous attacks upon him with swords and spears and this fragrant ﬂower from the garden of Az-Zahra was drenched in blood. Eventually, he fell off the saddle of his horse exclaiming, “O father, come and assist me.” Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) went quickly onto the battleﬁeld with his horse and brought his beloved son to the camp. Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) placed his son’s head on his knee and began to wipe dust from his blood-drenched head. Hazrat Sayyiduna Ali Akbar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) opened his eyes and was delighted to see his father for the last time. Thereafter, his eyes closed and he left towards eternal paradise.
Hazrat Sayyiduna Ali Asghar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) was the extremely small infant child of Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh). The innocent child was restless due to thirst. The hungry and thirsty mother of Sayyiduna Ali Asghar found that her breasts were dry and there was not even a drop of water available in the camp. This poor infant’s tongue was sticking out and he was continuously moving his feet and continuously crying. Sayyiduna Ali Asghar’s mother could not bear to see her son in this state of agitation and therefore, she took him to Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) and told her husband, “I cannot bear to see our son in this state any longer. When he cries it is as though my liver is cut into pieces. Take him and show his condition to the oppressors. Maybe those hard-hearted souls shall have compassion upon this innocent child and provide him something to drink.” Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) held the child next to his chest and proceeded towards the Yazeedis. He said to them, “O you who recite the Kalimah, this is my youngest son who is breathing his last breaths due to dehydration. He spreads his minute hands towards you and is seeking a bit of water to drink. If anyone is a criminal in your eyes, it is me, not this child. Therefore you should allow him to have a drink of water. If there is any compassion in your heart, you should give this child something to drink.”
These words of Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) had no effect upon these hard‑hearted tyrants and they had no pity for a child who could not even speak due to his infancy. Instead of providing water, a wretched individual named Harmala Ibn Kaahil, shot an arrow towards Sayyiduna Ali Asghar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh). The arrow pierced through his throat and ended up next to the arm of Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh). When Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) pulled the arrow from Sayyiduna Ali Asghar’s throat, a spring of blood began to ﬂow from his small neck and this beloved infant restlessly sacriﬁced his life whilst in the hands of his father. Hazrat Imam Hussain (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) raised his aggrieved eyes towards the skies and said, “O Lord! Accept this small sacriﬁce of Ali Asghar.” Then he took the small body of his beloved son back to the camp. When the body of Sayyiduna Ali Asghar (Radiallahu Ta’ala Anh) was placed on the lap of his mother, she placed him against her chest crying due to the loss of her son. She said, “Son, hold on to my chest for I shall not have the chance to place you against my chest again.”
May Allah Ta’ala grant us the Taufeeq to learn from the courage, bravery and sacrifice of the Shuhada-e-Karbala and the Taufeeq to stand up for Haqq even in adversity, Ameen.
[Compiled from Khutbaat-e-Muharram by Faqeeh-e-Millat Hazrat Allama Mufti Jalaaludeen Ahmad Amjadi Rahmatullah Alaih]