Muharram 2021: History, significance of the day of Ashura, how Sunni and Shia observe the day

This year Muharram began on August 11 in India, it is also based upon the sighting of the moon, just like Ramadan.

Muharram also called as Muharram-ul-Haram, is the most auspicious occasion in Islam after Ramadan and is the first month of the Islamic Hijri calendar. Muharram began on August 11 in India, it is also based upon the sighting of the moon, just like Ramadan. This year Ashura – the most remembered day will be on August 20.

Know about the history and significance of this day:

It is believed that with the help of God and established righteousness on Earth, Prophet Musa (Moses) defeated the cruel Pharaoh. The migration of Prophet Muhammed from Mecca to Medina in circa 622 AD is marked on the day of Ashura. As he and his followers were cruelly targeted for following and preaching Islam. It is also believed that on this day, Prophet Nuh (Noah) left on his ark.

The first ten days of the holy month of Muharram are immensely significant for the Muslim community, particularly Shia Muslims. They grieve the death of Prophet Muhammad’s grandson, Husayn Ibn Ali al-Hussein, at the Battle of Karbala in 680 AD, during this time.

How Sunni and Shia observe the day

Sunni Muslims fasts as a part of the mourning and engage in ibadat (remembrance of Allah) on day 9th and 10th Muharram. Sunni Muslims mark the day as a tradition followed by Prophet Muhammad.

On the other hand, Shia Muslims wear black clothes on Muharram remembering the horrors of Karbala. They start mourning the first day of Muharram and continues for 10 nights remembering the sacrifices made by the Prophet’s family. Hazrat Ali, Hazrat Imam Hasan and Hazrat Imam Hussain are remembered. In remembrance of their martyrdom, processions are taken out and fasts are also observed. Shias mourn his death every year by bloody self-flagellation or cutting themselves with sharp objects such as blades and knives to signify the suffering Imam Hussain experienced shortly before his death.

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