RNA – In a meeting with the organizers of a Qom-based Arba’in al-Husayn station at his office in the holy city, Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Mohammad-Ali Alavi-Gorgani said, “God Almighty called Imam al-Husayn ‘Thar Allah’ which [literally] means the ‘blood of God’ and this indicates the fading of the essence of Imam al-Husayn into God Almighty.”
The revered source of emulation said, “This means that Imam al-Husayn sacrificed everything that he had for God and the God Almighty will do everything that Imam al-Husayn demands in appreciation of the movement of this Imam. God Almighty also has placed great love, passion and enthusiasm for this pilgrimage in the hearts of the people.”
He added, “This meaning [of ‘Thar Allah’] was asked from the late Ayatollah Mohammad Bahr al-Uloum and this scholar responded in the same manner. Imam al-Husayn sacrificed everything and in appreciation of his actions, God must give something to Imam al-Husayn which is equal to his actions.”
Ayatollah Alavi-Gorgani emphasized that we must take advantage of the opportunity of the stopover in Qom of many pilgrims traveling to Karbala for cultural use in the best possible manner and said, “The pilgrims on the way to participate in the Arba’in al-Husayn pilgrimage have prepared and clean hearts and are ready to accept religious and cultural teachings.”
His Eminence said, “On the day of Arba’in, all these women and children embark on foot toward Karbala. This shows that God has ignited the heat of love for the Ahlul-Bayt and Imam al-Husayn in the hearts of the believers and the lovers.”
He said, “Arba’in al-Husayn is a culture that must be kept alive so that Islam can live again.”
In the meeting, Hujjat al-Islam Ahmad Hoseynzadeh noted that in the past two years, 140,000 people from sixteen countries have been served by the Arba’in Station in Qom before leaving for the Iraqi city of Karbala.
It is estimated that this year, pilgrims from sixteen countries will again be served by the Arba’in Station in Qom. In the past few years, these pilgrims were housed in the Qods Prayer Hall before they left for Iraq but this year, with the cooperation of the Holy Shrine of Lady Fatimah al-Ma’sumah, the pilgrims will be housed in the Jawad al-Aimmah Courtyard for three days. These pilgrims will be mainly from Pakistan.
Referring to the fact that the Arba’in Station in Qom is ready to host Iranian and non-Iranian pilgrims, he said, “Many foreign pilgrims, especially the Pakistani pilgrims, have travelled a long way and require rest and bathing facilities and thus, we have prepared a place of rest for these foreign pilgrims for three days and we have provided a one day place of rest for Iranian pilgrims.”
Hujjat al-Islam Ahmad Hoseynzadeh added, “We increased the number of prominent Pakistani speakers to provide promotional and cultural services along with welfare services for these pilgrims.”
The Arba’in of Imam al-Husayn is commemorated on the 20th day of Safar in the Hijri Lunar calendar and it is the anniversary of the fortieth day after the Battle of Karbala when Imam al-Husayn and his companions were martyred on the Day of Ashura (Muharram 10, 61 AH/October 13, 680). It is reported that the captives of the Battle of Karbala came to visit Imam al-Husayn in Karbala on 20th of Safar 61 AH (November 22, 680) on their return from Syria to Madinah.
Since the pilgrimage of Arba’in has been strongly recommended, Shi’ah, especially the Shi’ah of Iraq, move towards Karbala every year on the occasion of Arba’in. This procession, which is usually made on foot, is considered as one of the most crowded gatherings of people in the world.