The historic heart-rending event of Karbala has been presented in the light of its historic background and the guidance of the Holy Scriptures. It is for the learned readers to say that if it was or was not that the devilish forces with the strength at their command had not done the maximum possible for them to undo what all had been done for the guidance of man, and if it was or was not that divinity pure and maximum had not gone into action to have successfully resisted the satanic moves to re-establish the truth and godliness with the maximum amount of the sacrifices the Humanity could afford to offer in the way of the Lord.
It is now left for the historians of the world who never believe in any effects with their causes and thus always related events with their causative factors to trace out and declare to the world, what were the causes of the effects of the tragic events suffered by the godly members of the House of the Holy Probhet Muhammad. If there is truth in it or not, if it be said that if the Holy ones of the Ahlul Bayt, particularly Ali had not been alienated fixed by God and preached to man through His Apostle the Holy Prophet, and if the Umayyid family of Abu-Sufyan, with the knowledge of its attitude towards the Holy Prophet and Islam, bad been brought into power, as it was done, would the calamities that befell the Holy House, have been ever imaginable?
Could by any stroke of imagination, be ever deemed the object of Husayn the Holy Imam be anything other than to demonstrate to man to what extent falsehood should be resisted and at what cost the truth, the obedience to God and to none else, should be established. Husayn’s object was to educate man with the absolute submission to God and to yield only to God and to none else and to establish godliness on earth. To yield only to right, however much it might have been neglected and despised and defied by the world, facing might of whatever intensity and strength it might be, and in doing at no sacrtficc on the part of man is too great.
It is for the civilised world to pronounce its verdict if any act of extra gravity of the devotion to God consisting of superb sacrifices and ideal surrender and submission to the Lord, would be remembered or forgotten, and if any remembrance of any such act in a fitting way be righteous or sinful, commendable or condemnable, and at the same time forgetting it will be gratitude or ingratitude to God and godliness.
Hurting one's self for any worldly gain is undoubtedly condemnable and also a sin in Islam but the same act if it be in the way of the Lord is called martyrdom and if it be in the love of any apostle of God has been commended viz., Owais who broke his teeth with his own hands in his sympathy for the Holy Prophet’s losing his in a battle in the way of the Lord, was highly commended by the Holy Prophet and is cited by all scholars of the Islamic law as an action of devotion.
If a father dies, one of his sons might mourn the loss quietly, the other might cry aloud and the third might not control his love and attachment to his departed father and might in the excessive emotion of his, tear his clothes and strike his head with his own hands. The sympathizers with the bereaved family will only control the emotional conduct and not condemn or punish him. If any devotee of the Holy Imam unable to control his emotion and acts similarly, the godly world will do its best to control the overactive individual and not punish him, or condemn him as irreligious. On the other hand while commending control will only admire the individual's uncontrollable devotion to God and godliness.
There is one thing which irresistibly comes out a natural and a logical inference from the events that Umar could have invited the public to the position of the Ahlul Bayt in relation to the life of the people and had averted all the miseries they suffered. Umar was a man of fiery temperament, a fact acknowledged by history and even by Shibli No'mani in his well-known work 'Alfarooq', and he was the brain that controlled the affairs at the 'Saqeefa.' It was Umar's word that was carried there and it was at Umar's command that Abu-Bakr extended his hand to receive the fealty to him as the Caliph. It is an undeniable fact Umar was a man of his will. Whatever he willed, he did it and none could resist it.
It was he who overruled the system or the method of any kind of election in the matter of his succession and handed over the affair to a committee of his own choice. If Umar had done one thing, which however was not done, that after controlling the affairs at the 'Saqeefa ' as he effectively did, and when matters had settled, after the last services to the Holy Prophet, he could have called for a general assembly of the people of Madina and had addressed them as follows:
“O' ye brethren of mine, O' ye Muslims!
“It is our misfortune that we have been deprived of the presence of the Apostle of God from our midst. We have suffered the greatest loss. But at the same time let us be thankful to God that when He withdrew His Apostle front our midst he has spared amongst us Ali Ibn Abi Talib who is of the same Light of which was the Holy! Prophet. You have heard the Holy Prophet saying: 'I and Ali are of one and the same Light.' You know the Holy Prophet at the very outset of his ministry had shown Ali to the world and said: 'This is my Brother, my Vicegerent and my Kalif and you know the historic event conducted by the Holy Prophet at Ghadeer al-Khum when he declared 'Of whosoever I am the Maula the Master this Ali is his Master' and took allegiance to him and the first to pay allegiance to Ali was my own self Besides all the qualities that we need in the one to rule over us are undoubtedly there in Ali.”
“We need the most learned to rule over us. Who else can be a greater scholar than the one about whom the Holy Prophet has declared: 'I am the City of knowledge and Ali is its Gate.'
“We need the just to manage our affairs. Who else could be more equitous than the one about whom the Apostle of God has declared: 'The most just among you is Ali Ibn Abi Talib .'
“We need the bravest to lead us. It is Ali and none else who has earned the exclusive distinction of being called by the Holy Prophet 'Asadullah' (the Lion of God) and the “Tarraran ghare Farrarin' (The repeated attacker and the one who knows not running away leaving the field to the enemy). You know that at was Ali who stood with the Holy Prophet when every one of us being unable to stay any longer ran away from the field.
“Besides, you have all heard the Holy Prophet addressing Ali: 'Thou art to me as Aaron was to Moses save that there is no apostle to come after me.' Thou art to me as the head is to the body.' 'Thou art to me as the soul is to the body.' You all know that Ali is the self of the Holy Prophet which was shown to us on the day of the historic 'Mubahila.'
“O' Muslims! the Holy Prophet has left behind Two things the Holy Qur'an and his Ahlul Bayt and we have been asked to hold these Two fast for these will not be separated from each other and the Holy Prophet has declared: 'Qur' aanun Ma'al Ali wa Aliyyun Ma'al Qur'an' i.e., The Qur'an will be with Ali and Ali will always be with the Qur'an.
“Brethren you know that the Holy Prophet had not even breathed his last people had assembled in the 'Saqeefa' with the problem about the succession. You know me and Abu-Bakr had also been there. It was just to avoid any wrong step being against the verdict of the Holy Prophet for you know that going against the decision of the Holy Prophet is losing the faith and become infidels for the Lord has clearly declared in the Holy Qur'an:
“But no! Thy Lord! They believe not until they make thee a judge of what is in dispute, between them, and then find not any straightness in their hearts as to that which thou decidest and submit with full submission. ((Holy Qur’an, 4:65)
“Now brethren let us not go against the declared will and the decision of the Holy Prophet which he declared at the very outset of his ministry in the 'Dawate Asheera' and again reiterated it at the conclusion of it at Ghadeer al-Khum, for by doing so we, under the above verdict of the Holy Qur'an, be of those who have not believed at all.
“You know brethren what happened at the Saqeefa and my getting Abu Bakr declared as the Caliph but be it known that it was only an interim arrangement to avoid the calamity to any violation of the will of the Holy Prophet and I and Abu Bakr did it at the cost of our absence even from the last services to the Holy Prophet and his funeral. And now that matters have been settled let us all request Ali to come forward and bless us by his lead.”
At the end of such a speech from Umar, if Abu Bakr had got up and said:
“Brethren! Think not I accepted the Caliphate to own any power or authority not bestowed on me by the Holy Prophet. I accepted Umar's suggestion just as an inerim arrangement to avert the disturbance which I and Umar apprehended immediately at the departure of the Holy Prophet. Umar and I had rushed to the Saqeefa not minding even the last services to the Holy Prophet and his funeral to that the decision of the Holy Prophet about his declared Vicegerent Ali. And now I would request you to join me and Umar in requesting Ali to come forward and take up the reigns to rule our destiny as the one nearest to the Holy Prophet both in his relation to him and also in his personal purity and excellence declared about the Ahlul Bayt by the Lord in the verse of 'Tatheer' ((Holy Qur’an 33:33).
How readily the Muslim public would have accepted such a proposal how best would have been the result, is given out in the opinion of even a non-Muslim historian which has been quoted by Justice Amir Ali in his famous work 'The Spirit of Islam':
“Had” says Sédillot: “The principles of hereditary succession in favour of Ali been recognised at the outset, it would have prevented the rise of those disastrous pretentions which engulfed Islam in the blood of Muslims. The husband of Fatimah united in his person the right of succession as the lawful heir of the Prophet as well as the right by election. It might have been thought that all would submit themselves before his glory: so pure and so grand.” (The Spirit of Islam by Amir Ali)
Had Umar and Abu Bakr acted as above none could have doubted the bonafide of their intentions in their activity at the Saqeefa and today their act would have been held as a golden deed and their praise would certainly have decorated the pages of the Islamic History. Neither the Umayyids had come to power nor any one of the members of the House of the Holy Prophet had suffered any of the miseries and the calamities, and the wholesale heart-rending massacre of Karbala would never at all have taken place, the world today, under the godly rule of the Ahlul Bayt had enjoyed the heavenly bliss on earth.