Bemoaning of the Genies upon the Martyrdom of Imam Husayn (a.s)
Shaikh Ibn Qawlawayh Qummi relates from Maysami, that five men from among the dwellers of Kufa left to assist Imam Husayn (a.s.) and halted to rest at a village called Shahee. Two men, one old and the other a youth, neared and saluted them. Then the old man said, “I am a genie man, while this is my nephew who desires to assist the oppressed one (Imam Husayn)”. Then he continued, “But I have an idea”. The men asked, “And what is that?” The old genie replied, “I opine that I should fly and bring you the news regarding the group (of Imam Husayn) so that you may proceed with certainty”. They replied, “You have a fair idea”.
The old genie remained absent for a day and night, while on the next morning they heard a voice, but there was none visible, saying: “I have not come to you except after having seen him fallen down martyred, on the plains of Taff with cheeks covered in dust, around him lie some youth, whose necks drip blood, who are similar to the lanterns of light in the darkness, I galloped my camel swiftly so as to reach him before he hastens to meet the Hourie of Paradise, the Destiny of the Lord resisted me from doing so, Whose Destiny is the final word, Husayn was such a lantern from whom light scattered throughout the world, Allah is witness that I have said nothing but the truth, he has become a porter of the palace of the Prophet of Allah, his Vicegerent and the Tayyar (Ja’far bin Abi Talib)”.
One of the human youth replied him thus, “You may go to the grave where you remain, for the blessings of Allah shall descend there until Qiyamah, you have chosen a recommended path, while you have satiated yourself from that cup which is full to the brim, the youth who had desired Allah have forsaken their wealth, house and relatives”.
Sibt Ibn Jawzee in his Tazkirah, as also Madaeni, relate, that a man from Madinah said, that I left so as to reach Imam Husayn (a.s.) who was proceeding towards Iraq. When I reached Rabzah, I saw a man sitting. He told me, “O slave of Allah! Do you desire to assist Husayn (a.s.)?” I replied in the affirmative, and he continued, “I too desire the same, then sit down for I have dispatched my companion to get the reports for me”. Not much time had passed until his companion returned and started weeping while reciting: “I have not come to you accept .......” (the same elegy as quoted above).
Ibn Shahr Ashob says in his Manaqib, that the Genie lamented upon the grave of the Prophet (S) daily for a year.
It is related in the same book that De’bal says, that my father relates from my grandfather, who relates from his mother Sa’da, the daughter of Malik Khuza’i, that the genie were heard reciting elegies upon Husayn (a.s.) thus, “O son of the Martyr and a Martyr! Whose uncle was the best of uncles Ja’far at Tayyar, astonishment at the sharpened sword that was lifted upon your face and which was covered with dust”.
In another tradition, apart from the one in Manaqib, it is related from De’bal, that here I quote my own elegy: “Go to the pilgrimage to the grave in Iraq that is being visited and is the best of graves, then disobey the ass who desists you from doing so, why should I not come for your pilgrimage O Husayn, may my family and tribe be your ransom, your affection is preserved in the hearts of the intellectual ones, while their hearts are angry upon your enemies, O son of the Martyr and a Martyr! Whose uncle was the best of uncles Ja’far at Tayyar”.
Ibn Shahr Ashob relates, that (Caliph) Mansoor requested Imam Moosa al Kazim (a.s.) to hold a congregation for greetings on the day of Nawrooz and receive whatever is brought to him. Imam (a.s.) replied,
“I have examined the reports transmitted to me from my grandfather the Prophet of Allah (S), and I have not found any details regarding this day of celebration. This had been the practice of the Persians, while Islam has abolished it, and Allah’s Refuge, that we should enliven the abrogations of Islam”.
Mansoor replied, “We do this for diplomacy in our army. I request you in the name of Allah, the Exalted, the Magnificent, to congregate”. Imam Kazim (a.s.) agreed and held a congregation in which the notables and the rich men, as also the army men, arrived to greet him and brought gifts and presents for him. A slave of Mansoor was standing behind the Imam (a.s.) and was keeping an eye on the gifts and counting them.
Behind the men a very old man came forward and said, “O son of the Prophet of Allah! I am a feeble man and possess no wealth. I have brought as a gift for you three couplets composed by my grandfather in praise of your grandfather Imam Husayn (a.s.)”. Then he recited, “Astonishment at the sword that was lifted upon you on the day of the battle and the dust arose upon you, and astonishment upon the arrows that pierced your blessed body while the daughters of noblemen were beholding, and were calling out to your grandfather for assistance while their tears were flowing, were not the arrows desisted at piercing your body due to your sublimity and your loftiness?”
Imam Kazim (a.s.) said,
“I accept your gift. Sit down. May Allah grant you affluence in it”!
Then he lifted his head and told the slave,
“Go to the commander and ask him regarding this wealth, as to what is to be done with it”.
The slave left and returned back, and said, “The commander says that all the wealth is at your disposal, you may spend of it as you like”. Imam Moosa al Kazim (a.s.) turned towards the old man and said,
“I present you all this wealth”.
Sibt Ibn Jawzee in his Tazkirah has quoted regarding the elegies of the genie upon Imam Husayn (a.s.).
Zuhri relates from Umm Salama (a.s.), that she said, “We never heard the elegies of the genie accept on the night of the tenth (of Muharram) of Husayn, the recitor was saying: O eyes try and weep, for who shall weep upon the martyrs after me, upon the group who have been dragged by death towards a tyrant who was in the garb of a slave”. Thus I realized that Husayn (a.s.) was martyred.
Sha’abi relates that the inhabitants of Kufa heard a caller announcing in the morning: “I weep upon the one killed at Karbala, whose body was smeared in blood, I weep upon the one killed by the rebels innocently except due to his love of Allah, I weep upon the one who is wept upon by the inhabitants of the heavens and earth, the tyrants violated his sanctity and they deemed to be lawful for them that which Allah had prohibited even with ones maids, my father be ransom upon the body which lay bare of all except religion and virtue, every sorrow has consolation except this sorrow”.
Zuhri says, that the genie recited elegies on him: “The best women of the genie weep with extreme sorrow after beholding, they beat faces more radiant than the golden coins, and they adorn black dress after shunning the colorful ones”.
He further says, that the elegies of the genie, that have been memorized, are as follows: “His forehead was caressed by the Prophet, therefore his cheeks radiate light, his parents are the best ones from among the Quraysh, his grandfather is of the best of grandfathers, they killed you O son of the Prophet of Allah! Verily they shall dwell eternally in the fire of hell”.
Ibn Qawlawayh relates from Abu Ziyad Qandi, that the masons of the desert heard the genie recite elegies upon Imam Husayn (a.s.) as follows: “His forehead was caressed by the Prophet, therefore his cheeks radiate light, his parents are the best ones from among the Quraysh, his grandfather is of the best of grandfathers, they killed you O son of the Prophet of Allah! Verily they shall dwell eternally in the fire of hell”.
Ali bin Hazoor relates from Layla that she said, I heard the genies reciting elegies upon Imam Husayn (a.s.) as follows: “O eyes weep with sorrow while this news is correct, weep upon the son of Fatemah (a.s.) who had been to the bank of the Euphrates but did not return back, the genie weep upon him with sorrowful heart when they received the news of his martyrdom, they killed Husayn (a.s.) and the group of his companions and this news has spread chaos, I shall weep upon you with grief and lamentation, I shall weep upon you every morning and evening until the blood flows in my veins and the trees bear fruits”.
It is also narrated therein, “Weep upon the son of Fatemah (a.s.) whose martyrdom turned the hair grey, whose martyrdom resulted in earthquake and the sun entered into eclipse”.
It is narrated in Tareekhul Khulafa of Suyuti, that Sa’lab in his Amali relates from Abi Janab Kalbi, that he says, that I entered Karbala and asked one of the notables of Arabs, “I have been informed that you have heard the elegies of the genie?” He replied, “You shall not find any slave or layman except that they will tell you that they have heard it”. I said, “Then tell me as to what you yourself heard from them?” He replied, “I heard them say: His forehead was caressed by the Prophet, therefore his cheeks radiate light, his parents are the best ones from among the Quraysh, his grandfather is of the best of grandfathers, they killed you O son of the Prophet of Allah! Verily they shall dwell eternally in the fire of hell”.
Here the author quotes a considerable number of elegies and couplets expressing grief upon the martyrdom of Imam Husayn (a.s.) in the Arabic language that we do not include here, for the simple reason being that these couplets have their own flair and verve in the language in which they are composed and would loose their spirit if translated in any other language – Translator.