Tuesday 24th of May 2022
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Here is the plain of Arafat, resembling the Day of Judgment. What a tumult! Millions of pilgrims from different nations have converged on this plain. Wearing shrouds and bareheaded, all the pilgrims have raised their hands in supplication in this hot plain. What incentive has brought them to this wasteland from their homes? Have they come here under any force or allure of anything? They have come here to give positive response to God’s call. They have come here to enjoy the divine banquet to win God’s pleasure. It is the day of benefaction. O Lord, this edifice is the same place where Adam confessed his sin and was forgiven. It is the place where Ibrahim supplicated to God and won His favor. All messengers of God prostrated themselves in this place. The Holy Prophet (saw), too, expressed his servitude to God here. Accompanied by his friends, Imam Hussein (a.s), too, raised his hands in supplication to God in this place. The sun on the day of Arafat set amidst the moaning and weeping of Imam Hussein (a.s) and his companions. Can a person not be moved to tears in this place where God does not withhold His generosity and forgiveness? It is said that the biggest sin belongs to one who returns from Arafat thinking that he has not been forgiven; that is, he is disappointed with God’s mercy.


Addressing Jesus (a.s), God says:


يا عِيسى، كَم أُطِيلُ النَّظَرَ وأُحسِنُ الطَّلَب َوالقومُ  لا يَرجِعونَ!


“O Jesus, how long should I wait and show well wish for the people to turn to Me?”[117]


A Hadith Qudsi says:


لو عَلِمَ المُدْبِرونَ عَنِّي كيفَ انتِظارِي بِهِم وشَوقِي إلى تَوبَتِهِم لمَاتوا شَوقاً إِليّ ولَتَفَرَّقَت أوصالُهُم


“If they who turn their backs to Me know how eager I am for their turning to Me, they will certainly die out of eagerness to Me and their body joints will fall apart.”[118]


فَيا مَنْ هوَ عَلى المُقبِلينَ عليهَ مُقبِلٌ وبالعَطفِ عليهِم عائِدٌ مُفْضِلٌ وبالغافِلينَ عَن ذِكْرِهِ رَحيمٌ رَؤوفٌ  ويجذِبُهُم إلى بابهِ وَدودٌ عَطوفٌ


“O, He who comes toward those who come towards Him and grants gifts and bestows bounty upon them through tenderness! He is Compassionate and Clement toward those heedless of His remembrance and loving and tender in drawing them to His door!”[119]


وَهُوَ الّذِي يَقْبَلُ التَّوْبَةَ عَنْ عِبادِهِ وَيَعْفُو عَنِ السَّيِّئاتِ


“And He it is Who accepts repentance from His servants and pardons the evil deeds. (The Holy Quran; 42:25)”


Calling upon God and saying, ‘O Lord’ from the bottom of heart is sufficient to be answered.


وإِنَّ الرَّاحِلَ إلَيكَ قَريبُ المَسافَةِ


“I know well that for the travelers who set out onto Thee, the destination is very near.”[120]


Not only is God Forgiving but also, “Allah changes the evil deeds to good ones. (The Holy Quran; 25:70)”


Imam Sajjad (a.s) words:


يا مُبدِّلَ السَّيِّئاتِ بأضْعافِها مِن الحَسَناتِ


“O’ He Who changes the evil deeds into manifold good deeds.”[121]


Since repentance is good deed, it has a tenfold reward:


مَنْ جَاءَ بِالحَسَنَةِ فَلَهُ عَشْرُ أَمْثالِها


“Whoever brings a good deed, he shall have ten like it. (The Holy Quran; 6:160)”


As long as we are in Arafat, we can do nothing except requesting from Him.


 A mystic was asked, ‘What have you brought to this door?’ He answered: “A beggar who comes to the House of the King is not asked, what have you brought, rather he is asked: What do you need, beggar?”


It is said that a Dervish[122] set out for a king’s palace. They said to him: Take off your tattered clothes and put on new ones, for they do not fit the occasion. The Dervish said: What shall I do, for I have no other clothes? There is no blame in going to the royal palace in tatters, but there is blame if one comes out of the palace in tatters.


Likewise, if a man with sins goes to God’s House, he is in no way to be blamed, but if he returns from His House with the same sins and ashamed of his sins, it is contrary to God’s dignity and expectation.




A great source of happiness and hope for forgiveness of those staying in Arafat is the presence of Imam Mahdi (may Allah hasten his reappearance) in the plain of Arafat every Hajj season; hence, Arafat becomes dignified and descending place for the angels and a source of blessings for those staying there.


Ubaid ibn Zurara quotes Imam Sadiq (a.s) as saying:


يَفقِدُ الناسُ إمامَهُم فَيَشهَدُ المَوسِمَ فَيَراهُم ولا يَرَونَهُ


“People will miss their Imam, but he will witness every season of Hajj. Yet, he can see them but they cannot.”[123]


واللهِ إنَّ صاحِبَ هذا الأمرِ يحضُرُ المَوسِمَ كُلَّ سَنةٍ فَيَرى الناسَ وَيعرِفُهُم ويَرَونَهُ ولا يَعرِفونهُ.


“By Allah I swear, Imam Mahdi witnesses the season of Hajj every year. He can see and know people and they can see him but cannot know him.”[124]


 O God, we, pilgrims, turn to You and raise our hands in begging through the grace of Imam Mahdi (a.s) who has blessed this plain and has raised his hands in duaa in front of our gathering. We are sure the Imam’s honor is so great that whoever turns to You under his shelter and raises his hand in supplication under the shelter of his hands will not be deprived of God’s mercy.


The Holy Prophet (saw) is quoted by Selman the Persian as saying:


إنّ اللهَ عزّ وجَلّ يقولُ: يا عِبادِي، أَوَلَيسَ مَن لهُ إلَيكُمْ حَوَائِجُ كِبارٌ ولا تجُودُونَ بِها إِلاّ أنْ يَحْتَمِلَ عَليكُم بِأحَبِّ الخَلقِ إليكُم تَقضُونَها كَرامَةً لِشَفيعِهِم؟ أَلا فَاعلَموا أنَّ اَكرَمَ الخَلقِ عَلَيَّ وأفْضَلَهُم لَدَيَّ محَمّدٌ وأَخوهُ عَلِيٌّ ومِن بَعدِهِمُ الأئِمَّةُ عَليهِم السلامُ الذِينَ همُ الوسائِلُ إِلَيَّ. ألا فَلْيَدْعُني مَن أَهَمَّتْهُ حاجَةٌ يُريدُ نَفعَها أوْ دَهَتْهُ داهِيَةٌ يُريدُ كَفَّ ضَرَرِها بمُحَمَّدٍ وآلِهِ الطّيّبينَ الطّاهِرينَ أَقْضِيها لهُ أَحسَنَ ما يَقضيها مَن تَستَشفِعونَ إليهِ بِأعَزِّ الخَلقِ عَليهِ.


“Allah says: O My servant, has it not happened that someone requests something great from you but you will not fulfill his desire unless he brings an intercessor who is dear to you? Let it be known to you that the most honorable and respectable men to Me are Mohammad (saw), his brother Ali (a.s), and the Imams (a.s) who are the media of nearness to Me. Therefore, if you have a desire for a profit or removing of a loss, call Me through Mohammad (saw) and his pure household. Then I will fulfill the desire in the best manner.”[125]




As requirements for duaa to be answered have been met and thousands of hands have been raised in supplication, the pilgrims in Arafat should speak to God with the supplications reached us from the Imams (a.s) in this relation, Imam Hussein’s Duaa recited on such a day in Arafat is the most comprehensive. Also, Duaa 47 of al-Sahifat al-Sajjadiyya, containing theme of servitude is extremely useful for those who do not know Arabic can simply talk to God in their own languages and confide their grievances with their Most Kind Creator and know that there is no better confidant for them than God Who has said:


وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ، فَلْيَسْتَجِيبُوا لِي وَلْيُؤْمِنُوا بِي لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْشُدُونَ.


“And when My servants ask you concerning Me, then surely I am very near; I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he calls on Me, so they should answer My call and believe in Me that they may walk in the right way. (The Holy Quran; 2:186)”


Considering the above-mentioned Quranic Verse, is there any fear or concern left in man’s heart? The answer is a definite ‘No,’ for God Himself says:


فَمَنْ يُؤْمِنُ بِرَبِّهِ فَلا يَخَافُ بَخْساً وَلا رَهَقاً


“So whoever believes in his Lord, he should neither fear loss nor being overtaken by disgrace. (The Holy Quran; 27:13)”


When there are no ears to listen to our grievances, it is God Who is to listen to our requests.


يا جَارِيَ اللّصِيقُ، يا رُكْنِيَ الوَثيقُ، يا صاحِبَ كلِّ غَريبٍ، يا مُؤْنِسَ كُلِّ وحيدٍ، يا مَلجَأَ كلِّ طَريدٍ، يا مأْوى كُلِّ شَريدٍ


“O my adjacent Neighbor, O my sturdy pillar, O companion of every stranger, o intimate of everyone alone, o refuge of every outcast, o shelter of every wanderer…”[126]




The desire for the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (may our souls be ransoms for him) who is a cure of the physical and spiritual diseases of human society must be at the top of the list of our requests today. All social and individual misfortunes, ignorance, poverty, moral corruption, and maladies afflicting human beings will be removed with the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (a.s) and security and justice will prevail in the world in the light of his divine guidance. So, let us supplicate to God in unison and say:


أينَ المُعَدُّ لِقَطعِ دابِرِ الظَّلَمَةِ؟ أينَ المُنْتَظَرُ لإِقامَةِ الأَمْتِ والعِوَجِ؟ أينَ المُرْتَجى لإِزالَةِ الجَوْرِ والعُدْوانِ؟ أينَ المُدَّخَرُ لِتجديدِ الفَرائِضِ والسُّنَنِ؟ أينَ المُتَخَيَّرُ لإِعادَةِ المِلَّةِ والشَّريعَةِ؟ أينَ المُؤَمَّلُ لإِحْياءِ الكِتابِ وحُدودِهِ؟ أينَ محُيِي مَعالِمِ الدِّينِ وأَهلِهِ؟ أينَ قاصِمُ شَوكَةِ المُعتَدينَ؟ أينَ هادِمُ أبنِيَةِ الشِّرْكِ والنِّفاقِ؟ أينَ مُبيدُ أهلِ الفُسوقِ والعِصْيانِ والطُّغْيانِ؟ أينَ حاصِدُ فُروعِ الغَيِّ والشَّقاقِ؟ أينَ طامِسُ آثارِ الزَّيغِ والأهْواءِ؟ أينَ مُعِزُّ الأولِياءِ ومُذِلُّ الأَعْداءِ؟ أينَ الطّالِبُ بِذُحُولِ الأنبِياءِ وأبناءِ الأنبِياءِ؟ أينَ المُطالِبُ بِدَمِ المَذبوحِ بكَربَلاءَ؟ أينَ المَنصورُ عَلى مَنِ اعْتدَى وافْتَرى؟ هَل إلَيكَ يا بْنَ أحمَدَ سَبيلٌ فَتُلقى؟ هَل يَتَّصِلُ يومُنا مِنك بِغدِهِ فَنَحظى؟ مَتى نَرِدُ مَناهِلَكَ الرَّوِيَّةَ فَنُروى؟


 “Where is the one prepared to annihilate the oppressors? Where is the one awaited for straightening the crookedness and dishonesty? Where is the one expected (Imam Mahdi) for abolishing oppression and transgression? Where is the one stored for reviving the obligatory command and Sunnah (of the Holy Prophet)? Where is the one selected for resuscitating the reality of the nation and the religion? Where is the one expected for enlivening the Book and the doctrinal provisions? Where is the enlivener of the facts of the religion and its adherents? Where is the breaker of the might of the transgressors? Where is the demolisher of the edifices of polytheism and hypocrisy? Where is the destroyer of the followers of transgression, disobedience, and rebellion? Where is the eradicator of the branches of errors and dispute? Where is the destroyer of the signs of evil and egoistic tendencies? Where is the severer of the cords of falsehood and calumniation? Where is the destroyer of the vicious and disobedient people? Where is the eradicator of the followers of obstinacy and misguidance and the renegade? Where is the one who honors the friends and debases the enemy? Where is the gate of Allah through which all should enter? Where is the countenance of Allah through which the friends attend towards him? Where is the means stretching from the earth to the heaven? Where is the uniter of the companions of virtue and divine pleasure? Where is the avenger of the blood of the prophets and their children? Where is the seeker of revenge for the blood of the martyred ones of Karbala? Where is the triumphant one (who will overcome) over one who transgressed against him and maligned him? O son of Ahmed, is there a way through which you may be met? May our day (of separation) join the day of reappearance by which we enjoy? When shall we arrive at your streams to quench our thirst?”[127]


When we are said infinite oppression and grave injustice pave the way for the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (a.s), despair gives its place to hope in our hearts making waiting for you something pleasant. So, we tolerate all hardship in the hope of your reappearance and keep on supplicating.


فَأَغِثْ يا غِياثَ المُستَغيثِينَ عُبَيدَكَ المُبْتَلى وأَرِهِ سَيِّدَهُ يا شَديدَ القِوى وأَزِلْ عنهُ بهِ الأَسى والجَوى وبَرِّدْ غَليلَهُ يا مَن عَلى العَرشِ استَوى ومَن إلَيهِ الرُّجْعى


“So, help, O’ helper of those who seek help, your poor afflicted servant. And show him his Master: O severer of strength and through him (Imam Mahdi) remove his (Your servant’s) grief and sorrow. And cool the burning of his hurt, O You who are firm in the Heavenly Throne of power and towards Whom is the return and ultimate end.”[128]


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