11 Facts About Ashura


In Shia communities, Ashura observances are typically carried out in group processions and are accompanied by a variety of rituals ranging from weeping and shrine pilgrimages to the more controversial acts of self-flagellation and chest-beating.

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In folk traditions across countries such as Morocco and Algeria, the day of Ashura is variously celebrated with special foods, bonfires, or carnivals, though these practices are not supported by religious authorities.

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Root of the word Ashura means tenth in Semitic languages; hence the name, literally translated, means "the tenth day".

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Fasting on Ashura, the tenth day of the Islamic month of Muharram was a practice established by Muhammad in the early days of Islam that commemorates the parting of the Red Sea by Moses.

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When Ramadan was revealed, fasting in Ramadan became an obligation, and fasting on 'Ashura' was given up, and who ever wished to fast did so, and whoever did not wish to fast on it, did not fast.

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However, at the core of the symbolism of Ashura is the moral dichotomy between worldly injustice and corruption on the one hand and God-centered justice, piety, sacrifice and perseverance on the other.

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Also, Shiite Muslims consider the remembrance of the tragic events of Ashura to be an important way of worshipping God in a spiritual or mystical way.

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Some events associated with Ashura are held in special congregation halls known as "Imambargah" and Hussainia.

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Shia Muslims, the commemoration of Ashura is an event of intense grief and mourning.

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Commemoration of Ashura is of great socio-political value to the Shia, who have been a minority throughout their history.

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Terrorist attacks against Shia Muslims have occurred in several countries on the day of Ashura, which has produced an "interesting" feedback effect in Shia history.

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