5 Lessons From The Du'a Of Imam Husayn (A) In Ashura

Bismallahir Rahman al-Rahim. As-salam 'alaikum, wa Rahmatullahi Ta'ala, wa Barakatu.

What has he, who lost you, gained? And what has he, who gained you, lost? These are monumental words recited on the Plains of Arafat by the Master of Martyrs. Imam Husayn ibn 'Ali, peace and blessings upon him as part of the famous du'a on the Day of 'Arafat.

Anyone reflecting on these mesmerizing words and more, will come to the realization that Imam al-Husayn, alayhi as-salam, had a special relationship with du'a and the remembrance of Allah Subhana wa Ta'ala. It is therefore not surprising that despite the intense heat, thirst, calamities and the loss of family and friends on the 10th of Muharram, the dry lips of Husayn never stopped remembering his Lord, and was continuously in praise of Him.

There are at least 18 supplications that we have today from Imam Husayn, alayhi as-salam, that were recited on the Day of Ashura itself. It is such a blessing that they have survived, for they are not just words to be uttered by us mortals, beseeching the Absolute Perfect Being, but rather words coming from a brilliant physician of the soul who mastered the art of communication with the only Beloved.

The first du'a of Imam, alayhi as-salam, was after fajr prayers. When you looked up and saw 30,000 soldiers lined up to fight him and shed his blood. Unfazed and determined, the grandson of the Holy Prophet, uttered truly mind-blowing words, expressing his full reliance and trust in his Lord. This is what he said:

Allahumma anta thiqati fi kulli karb, wa anta raja'i fi kulli shidda, wa anta li fi kulli 'amrin nazala bi thiqatun wa 'uddah. Kam min hammin yad'ufu fihi al-fu'wad, wa taqillu fihi al-hilah, wa yakhdhulu fihi as-sadiq, wa yashmatu fihi al-'aduw, 'anzaltuhu bik, wa shakawtuhu ilayk, raghbatan minni ilayka amman siwak, fafarrajtahu wa kashaftah, wa 'anta waliyyu kulli ni'mah, wa sahibu kulli hasanah, wa muntaha kulli raghbah.

[O Allah! You are the One I trust in every adversity, and You are my trust and provision for everything that happens to me, (despite) the number of worries in which the heart weakens, strength diminishes, friends abandon, and rejoice, I endured it with You and appealed with You about it due to my devotion to You alone, so You relieved me of it and removed it, for You are the Master of every Grace, the Source of every blessing, and the Completion of every wish.]

There are lessons to be learned from Imam's first du'a in 'Ashura.

Number one, no matter what happens, no matter where we are and what we are facing, we must never forget that Allah Subhana wa Ta'ala is with us and we should trust Him fully. The feeling of not being abandoned by our Creator, together with Tawakkul, unreserved reliance that whatever happens is under His watchful eyes, will heal and soothe the troubled hearts and ensure we deal with hardship much more smoothly and successfully.

Number two, when we recite these words of Imam Husayn, alayhi as-salam, we should acknowledge that it is He, Subhana wa Ta'ala, that gives and takes, bestows and withholds. Therefore, it's all part of a grand plan, much of which we may not be able to work out or know. But, all that is from Him is for the best. Therefore, we must express gratitude and thankfulness. He knows best and we are His servants.

Number three. Allah listens, Allah responds, He is Kind and Merciful. Imam, alayhi as-salam, says: "every time I supplicate and ask You, You ease my pain. You, oh my Lord, help me, You push away difficulties and worries. Yes, we may not always see that or we get desperate as we still are under pain". But what we don't see or realize is definitely greater. And that is, our Lord does not abandon us.

Four. Every goal, aspiration, blessing and virtue will come from the Almighty Subhana wa Ta'ala. Imam Husayn, alayhi as-salam, wants to inculcate this for us. He wants us to fully realize our weakness and that our true strength is from Him and Him alone.

Five. In the short du'a, Imam is teaching us a fact, we must live with fear and hope in equal proportions so that we do not lose hope or become despondent. We fear our sins and its repercussions, and we intensify our hope that Allah Subhana wa Ta'ala the All-hearing, All-merciful Lord who will bless us and shower us with reward once we place the effort and struggle in His way.

This Muharram, let's recite the du'a of Imam al-Husayn, alayhi as-salam, in in 'Ashura such as this beautiful supplication. It has the potential to change our lives. We can recite this du'a every morning, or in the qunut of our salah, or whenever we feel we want to speak to Allah Subhana wa Ta'ala.