Friday, January 19, 2007

Islam turns 1427 years old

I have been really busy with a lot of developments in my personal life and have not been able to devote any time to my blog. However, I plan to post some new entries soon on the Islamic new year. Muharram is not only the first month of the Islamic calendar, but it is also the month that witnessed the sad and tragic betrayal of the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wassallam), Hussain ibn Ali ibn Abi Talib, that led to his brutal and merciless murder at the battle of Karbala. That was the 61st year of the Islamic Calendar.

The battle of Karbala (named after the southern city of Karbala in Iraq) was not just sad because a religious personality was betrayed by people who claimed to be his die-hard followers. Neither was his brutal slaying by the forces of Yazid - who was the controversial leader of the Muslim at the time - the only other aspect of this tragic event. But, this new year had brought with it a rift amongst Muslims that would split them up into 2 major sects: the main body of orthodox Sunnis versus those who claimed to be the "followers" of Hussain (AS), the Shi'ah.

The repercussions of that conflict and the hardening of stances on both sides can be witnessed even 1366 years after that event; no place more vividly than in the tug-of-war going on in Iraq today. More on this conflict later, in sha Allah. For now, here is an article I read today that talks of the issues and dilemmas facing the Islamic World today.