Mashi (Walking to Karbala)

A short article on an individual’s experience during Mashi (walking from Najaf Ashraf to Karbala Moulla) is presented, some Ahadith on rewards for a ‘Zair’ (a visitor to Holy Shrines) are given in Appendix I and advice of Masomeen on travelling manners is included in Appendix II.

The Word ‘مَشْيُ‏’, مَشْيِكَ (Mashi, Mashiak) means to walk humbly, neither too fast nor too slow (lazily). For example Allah-azwj Says in Verse 19 of Sura Luqman:

وَاقْصِدْ فِي مَشْيِكَ وَاغْضُضْ مِنْ صَوْتِكَ ۚ إِنَّ أَنْكَرَ الْأَصْوَاتِ لَصَوْتُ الْحَمِيرِ {1931:}

And be moderate in your walking and lower your voice …….[31:19]

When asked to describe the virtues of believers (momineen), Amir-ul-Momineen Ali-asws Ibn Abi Talib-asws says:

فالمؤمنون فيها هم أهل الفضائل، منطقهم الصواب وملبسهم الاقتصاد ومشيهم التواضع.

The Momineen are the people of virtues. Their speaking is the correctness, and their clothing is the moderate, and their walking is (with) the humbleness.

خضعوا لله بالطاعة فمضوا غاضين أبصارهم عما حرم الله عليهم، واقفين أسماعهم على العلم. نزلت أنفسهم منهم في البلاء كالذي نزلت في الرخاء، رضى عن الله بالقضاء.

They are humble to Allah-azwj with the obedience, and they shut their gazes from what Allah-azwj has Prohibited upon them, and they devote their hearing to the knowledge. Their behaviour in afflictions is similar to their behaviour in prosperity; they are pleased with the Decision of Allah-azwj.

لولا الآجال التي كتب الله لهم لم تستقر أرواحهم في أجسادهم طرفة عين، شوقا إلى الثواب وخوفا من العقاب. عظم الخالق في أنفسهم وصغر ما دونه في أعينهم.

If Allah-azwj had not Decreed a term for them, their souls would not stay in their bodies for even the blink of an eye – in their desire for the Reward, and Fear from the Punishment. They consider the Creator to be Great for themselves and everything else seems little in their eyes.[3]

During the days leading to Arbaeen[4], Momineen mostly walk in groups from Najaf Ashraf to Karbala Moulla (perform Mashi). Prior to Mashi, one has to remind himself/herself the above qualities of a Momin as described by Amir-ul-Momineen-asws, so that one would tread with humbleness and devotion to show his/her love to Imam Hussain-asws and the Martyrs of Karbala.

In Mashi, we see Momineen[5] from among children and elderly, walking towards Karbala Moulla with devotion and responding with ‘Labaik Ya Hussain-asws’ (At your-asws service Imam Husayn-asws). They walk under challenging conditions and sometime under incredible circumstances, e.g., with tired legs and injured feet, disabilities, carrying children and pushing wheel chairs.  Occasionally, we notice these but other times we miss out on such moving accounts while lost in the remembrance of our ‘Mazloom’ Imam-asws.

We also see an unbroken chain of ‘Moukkab’[6] – make-shift, permanently built, big and small ones, run by hundreds of volunteers groups and thousands of individuals. It’s hard to count the number of volunteers serving Momineen/Mominat spanning from little children to elderly, they are eager to offer comfort to the tired bodies, by inviting you to eat-in, rest and sleep, massage and treat injured feet.  Innocent children frequently offer water bottles, sweets and even tissue papers to register their love and care for the visitors of the great Imam-asws.  Small Moukkab are generally installed by the local Iraqis who are not very well off but their hospitality is amazingly rich.  Once in the Mashi, one cannot thank the volunteers enough, both inside the Moukkab and standing at the roadsides, for their tireless devotion and relentless efforts, inviting the Zair[7] for food, drinks, foot-treatment, offering sleeping berths and use of shower/WC facilities.

I have tried to reflect on my own experiences during ‘Mashi’ which are like myself, shallow and incoherent but they serve as a reminder to myself on how seriously I fell short of my responsibilities to fellow walkers, in general, and to my little group, in particular.  Among many slips, some are: I was inexcusably inflexible, failed to slow down to keep-up with those who had difficulty in walking and did not try hard enough to persuade those who were in higher spirit and valour to reach their beloved Imam-asws and Mola Abbas-asws‘s Harram to slightly hold back for slow moving members of the group. I was also inconsiderate when it came to taking a short break for a nap or comfort, and was hugely propelled by the desire of reaching my destiny with those who had the same passion.

I did not realise there, as I recollect today, I was more composed, more flexible and humble at the beginning of the Mashi but as my physical situation deteriorated, so did wane my superficial qualities which let my companions down – showing my lack of preparedness to serve the cause of my Imam-asws, if at all I were given a chance! Hence, I devote this short write-up to the Imam-ajfj of our time with seeking forgiveness and asking for help to enable me, and all of us, to behave as we claim to be when put to a trail – the conditions beyond our comfort zone!

Why did I say all of this?

One should look after all those who strive to visit Imam Hussain-asws‘s shrine.  In a Hadith, for example,

مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ يَحْيَى عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ الْحُسَيْنِ عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ إِسْمَاعِيلَ بْنِ بَزِيعٍ عَنْ صَالِحِ بْنِ عُقْبَةَ عَنْ أَبِي هَارُونَ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ (عليه السلام) قَالَ قَالَ لِنَفَرٍ عِنْدَهُ وَ أَنَا حَاضِرٌ مَا لَكُمْ تَسْتَخِفُّونَ بِنَا قَالَ فَقَامَ إِلَيْهِ رَجُلٌ مِنْ خُرَاسَانَ فَقَالَ مَعَاذٌ لِوَجْهِ اللَّهِ أَنْ نَسْتَخِفَّ بِكَ أَوْ بِشَيْ‏ءٍ مِنْ أَمْرِكَ فَقَالَ بَلَى إِنَّكَ أَحَدُ مَنِ اسْتَخَفَّ بِي فَقَالَ مَعَاذٌ لِوَجْهِ اللَّهِ أَنْ أَسْتَخِفَّ بِكَ فَقَالَ لَهُ وَيْحَكَ أَ وَ لَمْ تَسْمَعْ فُلَاناً وَ نَحْنُ بِقُرْبِ الْجُحْفَةِ وَ هُوَ يَقُولُ لَكَ احْمِلْنِي قَدْرَ مِيلٍ فَقَدْ وَ اللَّهِ أَعْيَيْتُ وَ اللَّهِ مَا رَفَعْتَ بِهِ رَأْساً وَ لَقَدِ اسْتَخْفَفْتَ بِهِ وَ مَنِ اسْتَخَفَّ بِمُؤْمِنٍ فِينَا اسْتَخَفَّ وَ ضَيَّعَ حُرْمَةَ اللَّهِ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ.

Muhammad Bin Yahya, from Muhammad Bin Al-Husayn, from Muhammad Bin Ismail Bin Yazi’e, from Saleh Bin Uqba, from Abu Haroun, who has said:

Abu Abdullah-asws having said to a number (of people) who were in his-asws presence and I was present: ‘What is the matter with you all that you take us-asws lightly?’ A man from Khurasan stood up and said, ‘Allah-azwj Forbid that we should take you-asws or any of your-asws commands lightly’.

He-asws said: ‘Yes, you are one of those who take me-asws lightly’. He said, ‘Allah-azwj Forbid that I should take you-asws lightly’. He-asws said to him: ‘Woe be unto you, or did you not hear so and so, and we were near Al-Juhfa, and he was saying to you, ‘Give me a ride for about a mile, for By Allah-azwj, I have become (very) tired’? By Allah-azwj, you did not even raise your head and took him lightly by it, and the one who takes one who Believes in us-asws lightly, has taken lightly and wasted the Sanctity of Allah-azwj Mighty and Majestic’.[8]

Why are we walking from Najaf to Karbala?

On the day of Ashura when our Imam Hussain-asws was left alone, after the martyrdom of relatives and friends, Imam-asws looked at the sky and invited all living creatures and souls to come forward and pledged their support. Imam-asws invited them by saying: “Hal Min Nasirin Yansurna” (“Is there anyone to extend support”).  The ‘Nidah’ (Call of the Imam-asws) was heard by all living beings as well as the souls of the Momineen – residing in ‘Alam-e-Arwah’ (worlds of the Souls).

So, the Momineen replied with ‘Labaik Ya Hussain-asws’ (At your-asws service Imam Husayn-asws) which was later embedded in the Momineen’s nature. Today, we answer to this very call by reciting ‘Labaik Ya Hussain-asws’! Imam-asws replies to our calls but our impurities, tarnished with the love of the world, hinder our hearing to greet the reply of our Imam-asws.  However, our souls are softly touched upon and our hearts cry out and tears start trickling through our eyes upon perceiving the warm welcome.

A Momin, when unable to listen to the replies of the Masomeen-asws would say, what can I do for my Moula-asws? Except for mourning and trying to observe, in my very little way, the suffering you-asws and your-asws family-asws had experienced by those who usurped your-asws properties, plundered your-asws rights and violated your-asws sanctity.

Masomeen-asws and the Imam-ajfj of our time deeply respect our sentiments and love towards Imam Hussain-asws with our trembling and tired bodies slowly progressing towards Karbala!  Sadly, one has to realise, our slogans naive due to our infirm commitment.  Why? If we scrutinise ourselves, we will find out that the love of the world has empowered us and our commitment may only be short-term and our feelings are no more sincere than those of Kufis’ pledges of allegiance to Muslim Ibn Aqeel-asws!

On one side are our imperfect commitments but on the other side Mola-asws is ‘Kareem Ibn Kareem’[9], so we all will be given a chance to assist the awaited Imam-ajfj, as we all wish, regardless of our flaws and infirm commitments – either we triumph or loose!

How is that possible? We quote below a sermon of Amir-ul-Momineen-asws from Nahjul Balagah:

نهج البلاغة: قال أمير المؤمنين عليه السّلام: الراضي بفعل قوم كالداخل فيه معهم، و على كلّ داخل في باطل إثمان: إثم العمل به و إثم الرضا به. و قال لمّا أظفره اللّه تعالى بأصحاب الجمل و قد قال بعض أصحابه «وددت أنّ أخي فلانا كان شاهدا ليرى ما نصرك اللّه على أعدائك» فقال: أهوى‏ أخيك‏ معنا؟ قال: نعم، قال: فقد شهدنا، و لقد شهدنا في عسكرنا هذا قوم في أصلاب الرجال و أرحام النساء سيرعف بهم الزمان و يقوى بهم الإيمان‏[10].

When Allah-azwj Gave Amir-ul-Momineen-asws victory over the enemy at the Battle of Jamal one of his-asws comrades said on that occasion, “I wish my brother ‘so-and-so’ had been present and he too would have seen what success and victory Allah-azwj had given you-asws,” whereupon Amir-ul-Momineen-asws said: “Did your brother hold me-asws as a friend?”

He replied: “Yes,”

Then Amir-ul-Momineen-asws said: ‘In that case he was with us. Rather in this army of ours even those persons were present who are still in the loins of men and wombs of women. Shortly, time will bring them out and faith will get strength through them.[11]

So, maybe we are given an opportunity to assist the cause of Imam-e-Zamana-ajfj, but we need to prepare ourselves, as best as we can, any remaining shortfall will be overlooked by the ‘Kareem Ibn Kareem’ Mola-asws rectifying our bodies and souls, Insha Allah-azwj!

Finally, Mashi also establishes and recreates the spirit of an ‘ideal’ Ziyarah, atmosphere – as it was performed centuries ago! These days we are accustomed to the luxuries of a modern lifestyle – we leave home on a ride, board a plane and arrive at a hotel near Harram of a Masoom-asws, relatively with ease and little discomfort – even though this little effort is appreciated by the Masomeen-asws. And we are rewarded for the our time and incurred expenses. The three-day ‘Mashi’, however, would enrich our experience and it prepares us for a simple and luxury-free way of approaching our beloved Imam-asws. It also reminds us the sufferings and pain of the Ahl-Harram-asws, who were made to walk to the court of Ibn Ziad-la from Karbala to Kufa, which is adjacent to Najaf Ashraf.

Companions of Imam-e-Zamana-ajfj will Operate as a Team:

I strongly feel, as an individual, we may have prepared ourselves to serve the Imam-ajfj of our time but as a group, we are far from what would be required at the ‘Saeh’[12] we are all waiting for. For example,

عَنْ أَبَانِ بْنِ‏ تَغْلِبَ عَنْ رِبْعِيٍّ عَنْ بُرَيْدٍ الْعِجْلِيِّ قَالَ قِيلَ لِأَبِي جَعْفَرٍ ع إِنَّ أَصْحَابَنَا بِالْكُوفَةِ لَجَمَاعَةٌ كَثِيرَةٌ فَلَوْ أَمَرْتَهُمْ لَأَطَاعُوكَ وَ اتَّبَعُوكَ

It has been narrated by Aban Ibn Tagheeb, who from Rabbi who from Bureed Al-Jayali who says:

‘It was said to Abu Ja’far-asws, ‘Our companions at Al-Kufa are a large community, so if you-asws were to order them (rise against government), they would obey you-asws and follow you-asws’.

قَالَ يَجِي‏ءُ أَحَدُكُمْ إِلَى كِيسِ أَخِيهِ فَيَأْخُذُ مِنْهُ حَاجَتَهُ فَقَالَ لَا

Imam-asws said: ‘Does one of you come to a money-bag of his brother, and he takes from it as per his need?’ He said, ‘No’ (they are not like that!).

فَقَالَ هُمْ بِدِمَائِهِمْ أَبْخَلُ ثُمَّ قَالَ إِنَّ النَّاسَ فِي هُدْنَةٍ نُنَاكِحُهُمْ وَ نُوَارِثُهُمْ حَتَّى إِذَا قَامَ الْقَائِمُ جَاءَتِ الْمُزَايَلَةُ وَ أَتَى الرَّجُلُ إِلَى كِيسِ أَخِيهِ فَيَأْخُذُ حَاجَتَهُ فَلَا يَمْنَعُهُ

So he-asws said: ‘They are (then going to be) more stingy with their blood’ (i.e., how will they sacrifice lives for each other?). Then he-asws said: ‘Surely, the people are in a truce. We (inter) marry them and inherit them, until when Al-Qaim-ajfj rises, so in that phase (the Momineen) will be like when a man would come to a money-bag of his brother and he will take as per his need, and he would not prevent him’.[13]

أَحْمَدُ بْنُ إِدْرِيسَ عَنِ ابْنِ قُتَيْبَةَ عَنِ ابْنِ شَاذَانَ عَنِ الْبَزَنْطِيِّ قَالَ قَالَ أَبُو الْحَسَنِ ع أَمَا وَ اللَّهِ لَا يَكُونُ الَّذِي تَمُدُّونَ إِلَيْهِ أَعْيُنَكُمْ حَتَّى تُمَيَّزُوا وَ تُمَحَّصُوا وَ حَتَّى لَا يَبْقَى مِنْكُمْ إِلَّا الْأَنْدَرُ

It has been reported by Ibn Ahmed Ibn Idris, who from Ibn Daqebah, who from Ibn Shazan, who has reported from Bazanati:

‘Abu Al-Hassan-asws said: ‘But, by Allah-azwj! It will not be happening, that which you are extending your eyes to (the appearance of Al-Qaim-ajfj) until you are distinguished, and you are purified, and until there does not remain any from you except for the fewest.

ثُمَّ تَلَا أَمْ حَسِبْتُمْ أَنْ تُتْرَكُوا وَ لَمَّا يَعْلَمِ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ جاهَدُوا مِنْكُمْ وَ يَعْلَمَ الصَّابِرِينَ‏

Then the Imam-asws recited: Are you reckoning that you would be left alone while Allah has not yet Known those of you who have struggled hard [9:16], and Allah-azwj Knows the patient ones!’[14]

After reviewing these Ahadith, I believe I have miserably failed during Mashi and regret of being deficient, however, may my neck be rescued, as I have pleaded guilty in the court of the most merciful Imam-asws (who is Kareem Ibn Kareem)[15] – who just asks for a sigh or tear of regret and forgiveness and bounties start pouring in and in abundance.

‘Mashi’ is to prepare for Conditions of the Awaited ‘Hour’:

عَبْدُ الْوَاحِدِ عَنْ أَحْمَدَ بْنِ هَوْذَةَ عَنِ النَّهَاوَنْدِيِّ عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ حَمَّادٍ عَنِ الْمُفَضَّلِ قَالَ كُنْتُ عِنْدَ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع بِالطَّوَافِ فَنَظَرَ إِلَيَّ وَ قَالَ لِي يَا مُفَضَّلُ مَا لِي أَرَاكَ مَهْمُوماً مُتَغَيِّرَ اللَّوْنِ

It has been narrated by Abd Al-Wahid, who from Ahmed Ibn Hozah, who from Nawahandi, who from Abd Allah Ibn Hammad, who from Mofassil, who says:

‘I was in the presence of Abu Abdullah-asws in the Tawaaf, and he-asws looked at me and said to me: ‘O Mufazzal! What is the matter I-asws see you worried and of changed colour (pale)?’

قَالَ فَقُلْتُ لَهُ جُعِلْتُ فِدَاكَ نَظَرِي إِلَى بَنِي الْعَبَّاسِ وَ مَا فِي أَيْدِيهِمْ مِنْ هَذَا الْمُلْكِ وَ السُّلْطَانِ وَ الْجَبَرُوتِ فَلَوْ كَانَ ذَلِكَ لَكُمْ لَكُنَّا فِيهِ مَعَكُمْ

The narrator says, ‘So I said to him-asws, ‘May I be sacrificed for you-asws! I looked at the clan of Abbas and what is in their hands of this kingdom, and the authority, and the grandeur. If only that was for you (Imams-asws), we would be in it with you-asws all’.

فَقَالَ يَا مُفَضَّلُ أَمَا لَوْ كَانَ ذَلِكَ لَمْ يَكُنْ إِلَّا سِيَاسَةُ اللَّيْلِ وَ سِيَاحَةُ النَّهَارِ وَ أَكْلُ الْجَشِبِ وَ لُبْسُ الْخَشِنِ شِبْهَ أَمِيرِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَ إِلَّا فَالنَّارُ فَزُوِيَ ذَلِكَ عَنَّا فَصِرْنَا نَأْكُلُ وَ نَشْرَبُ وَ هَلْ رَأَيْتَ ظُلَامَةً جَعَلَهَا اللَّهُ نِعْمَةً مِثْلَ هَذَا

So Imam-asws said: ‘O Mufazzal! But, if it was that, nothing would happen except patrolling at night and journeying by the day, and eating the dry (tasteless food), and wearing the coarse (clothing) resembling (those of) Amir Al-Momineen-asws, or else (those who are avoiding such conditions) would be for the Fire.

However, These responsibilities have been lifted from us and this is the reason you are able to consume good food, have you seen a hardship turning into a blessing, as is the case in this era (for you).[16]

وَ عَنْ أَحْمَدَ بْنِ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ عُقْدَةَ عَنْ أَحْمَدَ بْنِ يُوسُفَ بْنِ يَعْقُوبَ عَنْ إِسْمَاعِيلَ بْنِ مِهْرَانَ عَنِ الْحَسَنِ بْنِ عَلِيِّ بْنِ أَبِي حَمْزَةَ عَنْ أَبِيهِ وَ وُهَيْبٍ عَنْ أَبِي بَصِيرٍ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع أَنَّهُ‏ قَالَ إِذَا خَرَجَ الْقَائِمُ ع لَمْ يَكُنْ بَيْنَهُ وَ بَيْنَ الْعَرَبِ وَ قُرَيْشٍ إِلَّا السَّيْفُ مَا يَأْخُذُ مِنْهَا إِلَّا السَّيْفُ وَ مَا يَسْتَعْجِلُونَ بِخُرُوجِ الْقَائِمِ ع فَوَ اللَّهِ مَا طَعَامُهُ إِلَّا الشَّعِيرُ الْجَشِبُ وَ لَا لِبَاسُهُ إِلَّا الْغَلِيظُ الْخَبَرَ وَ مَا هُوَ إِلَّا السَّيْفُ وَ الْمَوْتُ تَحْتَ ظِلِّ السَّيْفِ

It has been narrated Ahmed Ibn Mohammed Ibn Uktada, who from Ahmed Ibn Yousif Ibn Yaqoob, who from Ismail Ibn Mahran, who from Al-Hassan Ibn Ali Ibn Abi Hamza, who from his father, who from Abu Basir:

‘From Abu Abdullah-asws having said: ‘When Al-Qaim-ajfj comes out (from Occultation), there would not happen to be between him-ajfj and the Arabs and Qureysh except for the sword. He-ajfj will not deal with them except by the sword, and do not be hastening with the appearance of Al-Qaim-ajfj, for, by Allah-azwj his-ajfj food will not be except for the dry barley (bread), nor would his-ajfj clothing be except of the coarse, the rough, and it would not be except for the sword, and the death would be beneath the shadow of the sword’.[17]

Being Judgemental and Expecting More from Others:

I noticed, while walking in the crowd and in small assemblies, we pick on the slips and weaknesses of other Momineen, which surely is an un-Islamic habit and has crept in our system due to our competitive lifestyle and gossiping habits. We also have had more expectations of righteousness from others.  Imam-asws says, for example:

يَا عِيسَى انْظُرْ فِي عَمَلِكَ نَظَرَ الْعَبْدِ الْمُذْنِبِ الْخَاطِئِ وَ لَا تَنْظُرْ فِي عَمَلِ غَيْرِكَ بِمَنْزِلَةِ الرَّبِّ كُنْ فِيهَا زَاهِداً وَ لَا تَرْغَبْ فِيهَا فَتَعْطَبَ

(Allah-azwj Said to Prophet Isa-as) O Isa-as! Look into your-as affairs with a consideration of the sinful servant, the erroneous one, and do not look into the affairs of the other with the position of the Lord-azwj. Become an ascetic therein and do not be allured with regards to it, for you-as would be corrupted.[18]

عَنْهُ عَنْ أَحْمَدَ بْنِ مُحَمَّدٍ عَنْ عَلِيِّ بْنِ الْحَكَمِ عَنْ عُمَرَ بْنِ حَنْظَلَةَ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع قَالَ يَا عُمَرُ لَا تَحْمِلُوا عَلَى شِيعَتِنَا وَ ارْفُقُوا بِهِمْ فَإِنَّ النَّاسَ لَا يَحْتَمِلُونَ مَا تَحْمِلُونَ

It is narrated from the narrator of the previous Hadith from Ahmad ibn Muhammad from Ali ibn al-Hakam from ‘Umar ibn Hanzalah who has narrated the following:

‘Abu Abd Allah-asws once said: ‘O ‘Umar! You must not overburden our Shias! You must be kind to them because (general) people do not endure what you bear.[19]

Amir-ul-Momineen-asws’s Advice to his advancing soldiers:

وَ إِيَّاكُمْ وَ التَّفَرُّقَ فَإِذَا نَزَلْتُمْ فَانْزِلُوا جَمِيعاً وَ إِذَا رَحَلْتُمْ فَارْحَلُوا جَمِيعاً وَ إِذَا غَشِيَكُمُ اللَّيْلُ فَنَزَلْتُمْ فَحُفُّوا عَسْكَرَكُمْ بِالرِّمَاحِ وَ التِّرَسَةِ وَ لْتَكُنْ رُمَاتُكُمْ مِنْ وَرَاءِ تِرَسَتِكُمْ وَ رِمَاحُكُمْ يَلُونَهُمْ وَ مَا أَقَمْتُمْ

(Amir ul-Momineen-asws said:) And beware of separation. Whenever you encamp, then encamp all together, and whenever you depart, then depart all together, and when the night overcomes you and you have encamped, then protect your soldiers with the spears and the shields, and let your throwing be from behind your shields, and your spear should follow them and what you have set up. (an extract). [20]

What Assist in Walking:

مصباح الشريعة قَالَ الصَّادِقُ ع‏ إِنْ كُنْتَ عَاقِلًا فَقَدِّمِ الْعَزِيمَةَ الصَّحِيحَةَ وَ النِّيَّةَ الصَّادِقَةَ فِي حِينِ قَصْدِكَ إِلَى أَيِّ مَكَانٍ أَرَدْتَ وَ انْهَ النَّفْسَ مِنَ التَّخَطِّي إِلَى مَحْذُورٍ وَ كُنْ مُتَفَكِّراً فِي مَشْيِكَ وَ مُعْتَبِراً لِعَجَائِبِ صُنْعِ اللَّهِ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ أَيْنَمَا بَلَغْتَ وَ لَا تَكُنْ مُسْتَهْتَراً وَ لَا مُتَبَخْتِراً فِي مِشْيَتِكَ وَ غُضَّ بَصَرَكَ عَمَّا لَا يَلِيقُ بِالدِّينِ وَ اذْكُرِ اللَّهَ كَثِيراً

(The book) ‘Misbah Al Sharia’ –

‘Al-Sadiq-asws said: ‘If you were to be intellectual, present the correct determination, and the truthful intent during when you aim to go to whichever place you want, and it is the soul stepping to the danger, and be pondering during your walk, and taking lessons at the wonderous Making of Allah-azwj Mighty and Majestic wherever you may reach, and neither be mocking, nor swagger (sway/showing-off) in your walk, and shut your eyes from what is not related with the religion, and mention (do Zikr) of Allah-azwj a lot.

فَإِنَّهُ قَدْ جَاءَ فِي الْخَبَرِ أَنَّ الْمَوَاضِعَ الَّتِي يُذْكَرُ اللَّهُ فِيهَا وَ عَلَيْهَا تَشْهَدُ بِذَلِكَ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَ تَسْتَغْفِرُ لَهُمْ إِلَى أَنْ يُدْخِلَهُمُ الْجَنَّةَ

It has come in the Hadeeth that the place in which Zikr of Allah-azwj is done will testify with that in the Presence of Allah-azwj on the Day of Qiyamah and seek Forgiveness for them until it enters them into the Paradise.

وَ لَا تُكْثِرِ الْكَلَامَ مَعَ النَّاسِ فِي الطَّرِيقِ فَإِنَّ فِيهِ سُوءَ الْأَدَبِ وَ أَكْثَرُ الطُّرُقِ مَرَاصِدُ الشَّيْطَانِ وَ مَتْجَرَتُهُ فَلَا تَأْمَنْ كَيْدَهُ

And do not frequent the talking with the people in the road for in it are evil etiquettes, and most of the roads are ambushes of the Satan-la and his-la stall, so you will not be safe from his‑la plots.

وَ اجْعَلْ ذَهَابَكَ وَ مَجِيئَكَ فِي طَاعَةِ اللَّهِ وَ الْمَشْيِ فِي رِضَاهُ فَإِنَّ حَرَكَاتِكَ كُلَّهَا مَكْتُوبَةٌ فِي صَحِيفَتِكَ

And make your going and coming to be in the obedience of Allah-azwj, and the walking to be in His-azwj Satisfaction, for your movements, all of them are written in your parchment (register of deeds).

قَالَ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى- يَوْمَ تَشْهَدُ عَلَيْهِمْ أَلْسِنَتُهُمْ وَ أَيْدِيهِمْ‏ وَ أَرْجُلُهُمْ بِما كانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ‏

Allah-azwj the Exalted Said: ‘On the Day, their tongues will testify against them, and their hands, and their legs, with what they had been doing [24:24].

وَ قَالَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَ جَلَ‏ وَ كُلَّ إِنسانٍ أَلْزَمْناهُ طائِرَهُ فِي عُنُقِهِ‏.

And Allah-azwj Mighty and Majestic Said: And every human, We Fastened to him his fate in his neck, [17:13]’’.[21]

جع، جامع الأخبار قَالَ النَّبِيُّ ص‏ مَنْ مَشَى مَعَ الْعَصَا فِي السَّفَرِ وَ الْحَضَرِ لِلتَّوَاضُعِ يُكْتَبُ لَهُ بِكُلِّ خُطْوَةٍ أَلْفُ حَسَنَةٍ وَ مُحِيَ عَنْهُ أَلْفُ سَيِّئَةٍ وَ رُفِعَ لَهُ أَلْفُ دَرَجَةٍ.

(The book) ‘Jamie Al Akhbar’ –

‘The Prophet-saww said: ‘One who walks with the staff during the journey and the staying for the humbleness, a thousand good deeds will be written for him with every step, and a thousand evil deeds will be deleted from him, and a thousand ranks will be raised for him’’.[22]

– ل، الخصال عَنْ مَاجِيلَوَيْهِ عَنْ مُحَمَّدٍ الْعَطَّارِ عَنِ الْأَشْعَرِيِّ عَنِ الْيَقْطِينِيِّ عَنِ الدِّهْقَانِ عَنْ دُرُسْتَ عَنْ إِبْرَاهِيمَ بْنِ عَبْدِ الْحَمِيدِ عَنْ أَبِي الْحَسَنِ ع قَالَ: سُرْعَةُ الْمَشْيِ يَذْهَبُ بِبَهَاءِ الْمُؤْمِنِ‏.

(The book) ‘Al Khisaal’ – from Majaylawiya, from Muhammad Al Attar, from Al Ashary, from Al Yaqteeny, from Al Dihqan, from Dorost, from Ibrahim Bin Abdul Hameed,

‘From Abu Al-Hassan-asws having said: ‘Quickness of the walking removes the splendour of the Momin’’.[23]

Concluding Remarks:

I acknowledge, after all my shortcomings, my very kind and forgiving Mola-asws accepted me as his-asws guest and has enriched me enormously – with countless bounties, more than I could have ever imagined.  I came as a sinner with superficial devotion and had slips after slips during Mashi, but my ‘Kareem’[24] Mola-asws cleansed me and uplifted my spiritual levels.  Many of my wishes were fulfilled so soon – that I got worried of not offering enough thanks. I learnt so much during Mashi, each moment was an eye-opener, whether I could grasp it or not – it’s beyond description so one really has to experience it.  Mashi is a spiritual training for all ages, regardless of their religious knowledge, devoutness and understanding.  I hope we could all preserve the spiritual cleansing without losing much of it by indulging into our worldly affairs, Ameen!

Finally, then came the saddest moment – the moment to say goodbye to my beloved Imam-asws, Mola Ghazi Abbas-asws and the martyrs of Karbala-as – I recited, with tearful eyes, the words taught to us in a Hadith by our 6th Imam-asws.

Imam Sadiq-asws says:  ‘When you decide to bid farewell after having performed the Ziyarah (of Imam Hussain-asws), turn your face towards his-asws face, touch the grave, and recite (the following):

السَّلَامُ عَلَيْكَ يَا وَلِيَّ اللَّهِ السَّلَامُ عَلَيْكَ يَا أَبَا عَبْدِ اللَّهِ أَنْتَ لِي جُنَّةٌ مِنَ الْعَذَابِ وَ هَذَا أَوَانُ انْصِرَافِي عَنْكَ غَيْرَ رَاغِبٍ عَنْكَ وَ لَا مُسْتَبْدِلٍ بِكَ سِوَاكَ وَ لَا مُؤْثِرٍ عَلَيْكَ غَيْرَكَ وَ لَا زَاهِدٍ فِي قُرْبِكَ

Salaam to you-asws, O Wali of Allah-azwj.  Salaam to you-asws, O Aba ‘Abdillah-asws.  You-asws are my protection from the chastisement (of the Hereafter).  This is the time for me to leave you-asws although I am not abandoning you-asws, I am not replacing you-asws with anyone other than you-asws, nor am I giving preference to anyone else above you-asws.  I have not lost the desire to be near you-asws…..

وَ إِنْ أَبْقَيْتَنِي يَا رَبِّ فَارْزُقْنِي الْعَوْدَ إِلَيْهِ ثُمَّ الْعَوْدَ إِلَيْهِ بَعْدَ الْعَوْدِ بِرَحْمَتِكَ يَا أَرْحَمَ الرَّاحِمِينَ

And if You-azwj keep me alive, then sustain me with coming to his-asws Ziyarah again and again with Your-azwj Mercy, O the Most Merciful of the merciful ones.

اللَّهُمَّ صَلِّ عَلَى مُحَمَّدٍ وَ آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ لَا تَشْغَلْنِي عَنْ ذِكْرِكَ بِإِكْثَارٍ عَلَيَّ مِنَ الدُّنْيَا تُلْهِينِي عَجَائِبُ بَهْجَتِهَا وَ تَفْتِنُنِي زَهَرَاتُ زِينَتِهَا وَ لَا بِإِقْلَالٍ يَضُرُّ بِعَمَلِي كَدُّهُ وَ يَمْلَأُ صَدْرِي هَمُّهُ وَ أَعْطِنِي ‏بِذَلِكَ غِنًى عَنْ شِرَارِ خَلْقِكَ وَ بَلَاغاً أَنَالُ بِهِ رِضَاكَ يَا رَحْمَانُ

O Allah-azwj!  Send Your-azwj blessing on Mohammed-saww and the family of Mohammed-asws and do not make me preoccupied with the blessings of this world such that I neglect Your-azwj remembrance.  Do not give me too many (worldly blessings) such that I become fond of its wondering happiness and such that I become charmed by its shining decorations.  (Also) do not give me too little such that my good deeds are affected by working too hard for this world and such that I continuously worry about it.  Give me enough so that I do not need the evil ones from Your-azwj creation and enough that I can attain Your-azwj pleasure, O the Most Merciful….(an extract from a Hadith on bidding farewell to Imam Hussain-asws).[25]

Some Suggestions for the next Mashi (Insha Allah):

  • All those who have the intention to complete the Mashi (walk from Najaf Ashraf to Karbala Moulla) are helped by the ‘Host’ (Masomeen-asws), so rely on the Imam-asws rather than on your strength or lack of it;
  • Never fix targets, be flexible and walk with the pace set by the slowest;
  • Walking in a group with the ‘Alam Pak’ and recitation always assists in keeping your thoughts focused;
  • The total distance (80 kilometres) is going to take about 30 hours of walking, obviously Momineen walk faster in the start, beware, walk moderately from the starting point as one develops blisters on feet, so build-up group’s walk pace, gradually, slowly and vary it as per evolving situations;
  • Take 10-15 minutes rest after every 50 poles, don’t go for 100 or more poles as that’s hard to keep up with for children and some adults;
  • As Mashi is going to be in warmer weather, so its best to walk in later hours and early mornings and try to catch-up with sleep during the hotter hours of the day;
  • Its best to ask the group organiser to reserve your ‘resting places’ when in a group, so you are not burdened with finding resting spots while walking;
  • When resting/sleeping during the day, make sure the tent your group leader organises has plenty of fresh breeze and that it is not closed from its other end. Otherwise one would be unable to rest in the hot weather (expect temperature reaching 40 C)! More and more Momineen have already started taking this option.
  • Eat simple food and drink plenty of water, have adequate sleep, and have your mobile phone with Iraqi number in order to be contactable and it’s also beneficial to have headphones so you may listen to Holy Quran/Noha/Marsia which would keep you composed and attentive during Mashi.
  • Also consider additional walk due to security detours, near Karbala Moulla, made near the time of Arbaeen day, hence expect between one to two hours’s additional walk from the last pole.

Additional Comments (by anonymous Mashi participants):

(please write as many points as you like)

Appendix I: On Rewards of Visiting Holy Shrine of Imam Hussain-asws

حَدَّثَنِي أَبِي وَ جَمَاعَةُ مَشَايِخِي عَنْ سَعْدِ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ وَ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ يَحْيَى وَ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ جَعْفَرٍ الْحِمْيَرِيِّ وَ أَحْمَدَ بْنِ إِدْرِيسَ جَمِيعاً عَنِ الْحُسَيْنِ بْنِ عُبَيْدِ اللَّهِ عَنِ الْحَسَنِ بْنِ عَلِيِّ بْنِ أَبِي عُثْمَانَ عَنْ عَبْدِ الْجَبَّارِ النَّهَاوَنْدِيِّ عَنْ أَبِي سَعِيدٍ عَنِ الْحُسَيْنِ بْنِ ثُوَيْرِ بْنِ أَبِي فَاخِتَةَ قَالَ قَالَ أَبُو عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع‏ يَا حُسَيْنُ مَنْ خَرَجَ مِنْ مَنْزِلِهِ يُرِيدُ زِيَارَةَ قَبْرِ الْحُسَيْنِ بْنِ عَلِيٍّ ص إِنْ‏ كَانَ‏ مَاشِياً كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَهُ بِكُلِّ خُطْوَةٍ حَسَنَةً وَ مَحَى عَنْهُ سَيِّئَةً حَتَّى إِذَا صَارَ فِي الْحَائِرِ كَتَبَهُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْمُصْلِحِينَ الْمُنْتَجَبِينَ [الْمُفْلِحينَ الْمُنْجِحِينَ‏] حَتَّى إِذَا قَضَى مَنَاسِكَهُ كَتَبَهُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْفَائِزِينَ حَتَّى إِذَا أَرَادَ الِانْصِرَافَ أَتَاهُ مَلَكٌ فَقَالَ إِنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ص يُقْرِؤُكَ السَّلَامَ وَ يَقُولُ لَكَ اسْتَأْنِفِ الْعَمَلَ فَقَدْ غُفِرَ لَكَ مَا مَضَى.

Imam Sadiq-asws said to me (the narrator): Hussain! Allah-azwj will Write a good deed for one who leaves his house to perform the Ziyarat of Imam Hussain-asws on foot and Erase a sin from him for every step he takes. When he arrives at the holy shrine  Allah-azwj will Write him as the one who has achieved salvation and as the successful one.

After he completes the Ziyarat, Allah-azwj will Write him as the successful one. When he decides to return, an angel will come to him and say: “Rasool Allah-saww conveys his-saww salutation on you and tells you that all your previous sins have been forgiven. So continue with good deeds.”[26]

حَدَّثَنِي أَبِي عَنْ سَعْدِ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ وَ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ يَحْيَى عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ الْحُسَيْنِ عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ إِسْمَاعِيلَ عَنْ صَالِحِ بْنِ عُقْبَةَ عَنْ بَشِيرٍ الدَّهَّانِ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع قَالَ: إِنَّ الرَّجُلَ لَيَخْرُجُ إِلَى قَبْرِ الْحُسَيْنِ ع فَلَهُ إِذَا خَرَجَ مِنْ أَهْلِهِ بِأَوَّلِ خُطْوَةٍ مَغْفِرَةُ ذُنُوبِهِ- ثُمَّ لَمْ يَزَلْ يُقَدَّسُ بِكُلِّ خُطْوَةٍ حَتَّى يَأْتِيَهُ فَإِذَا أَتَاهُ نَاجَاهُ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى فَقَالَ عَبْدِي سَلْنِي أُعْطِكَ ادْعُنِي أُجِبْكَ اطْلُبْ مِنِّي أُعْطِكَ سَلْنِي حَاجَةً أقضيها [أَقْضِهَا] لَكَ قَالَ وَ قَالَ أَبُو عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع وَ حَقٌّ عَلَى اللَّهِ أَنْ يُعْطِيَ مَا بَذَلَ.

Imam Sadiq-asws said: When a man leaves his family to visit the grave of Imam Hussain-asws, with the first step he takes, all his sins are forgiven. Then as he travels, he will become further purified. Once he arrives at the grave of Imam Hussain-asws, Allah-azwj will Speak to him confidentially and say, “O My-azwj servant! Ask Me-azwj for anything and I-azwj Will Grant it. Call Me-azwj, for I-azwj Will Answer you. Desire anything and I-azwj Will Fulfil it and ask Me-azwj for any of your needs so that I-azwj May Grant it.” Imam Sadiq-asws added, “It is on the Almighty Allah-azwj to Recompense him for that which he has spent (on Ziyarah).”[27]

وَ بِهَذَا الْإِسْنَادِ عَنْ صَالِحٍ عَنِ الْحَرْثِ بْنِ الْمُغِيرَةِ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع قَالَ: إِنَّ لِلَّهِ مَلَائِكَةً مُوَكَّلِينَ‏ بِقَبْرِ الْحُسَيْنِ ع فَإِذَا هَمَّ بِزِيَارَتِهِ الرَّجُلُ أَعْطَاهُمُ اللَّهُ ذُنُوبَهُ فَإِذَا خَطَا مَحَوْهَا ثُمَّ إِذَا خَطَا ضَاعَفُوا لَهُ حَسَنَاتِهِ فَمَا تَزَالُ حَسَنَاتُهُ تَضَاعَفُ حَتَّى تُوجِبَ لَهُ الْجَنَّةَ ثُمَّ اكْتَنَفُوهُ وَ قَدَّسُوهُ وَ يُنَادُونَ مَلَائِكَةَ السَّمَاءِ أَنْ قَدِّسُوا زُوَّارَ حَبِيبِ اللَّهِ فَإِذَا اغْتَسَلُوا نَادَاهُمْ مُحَمَّدٌ ص يَا وَفْدَ اللَّهِ أَبْشِرُوا بِمُرَافَقَتِي فِي الْجَنَّةِ ثُمَّ نَادَاهُمْ أَمِيرُ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ‏ع أَنَا ضَامِنٌ لِقَضَاءِ حَوَائِجِكُمْ وَ دَفْعِ الْبَلَاءِ عَنْكُمْ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَ الْآخِرَةِ ثُمَّ الْتَقَاهُمْ [اكْتَنَفَهُمُ‏] النَّبِيُّ ص عَنْ أَيْمَانِهِمْ وَ عَنْ شَمَائِلِهِمْ حَتَّى يَنْصَرِفُوا إِلَى أَهَالِيهِمْ.

Imam Sadiq-asws said: Allah-azwj has some angels who are appointed at the grave of Imam Hussain-asws. When a person decides to perform the Ziyarat of Imam Hussain-asws, Allah-azwj Gives his sins to these angels. With the first step that he takes, the angels will erase his sins and with any additional steps, they will multiply his good deeds until he becomes eligible for the Paradise. Then they will surround him and sanctify him. They will call out to the angels of the heavens, “Sanctify the visitor of the beloved of the beloved of Allah-azwj.”

When the visitor performs the Ghusl, (Prophet) Muhammad-saww will call out to him: “O Guest of Allah-azwj! Glad tidings to you, for you will join me-saww in Paradise.” Then Amir-ul-Momineen-asws will call out, “I-asws guarantee the fulfilment of your requests and to keep afflictions away from you in this life and the Hereafter.” Then the Rasool Allah-saww will join them and stay to their right and left until they return to their family.[28]

وَ حَدَّثَنِي عَلِيُّ بْنُ الْحُسَيْنِ بْنِ مُوسَى بْنِ بَابَوَيْهِ وَ جَمَاعَةٌ رَحِمَهُمُ اللَّهُ عَنْ سَعْدِ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ عَنِ الْحَسَنِ بْنِ عَلِيِّ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ الْمُغِيرَةِ عَنِ الْعَبَّاسِ بْنِ عَامِرٍ عَنْ جَابِرٍ الْمَكْفُوفِ عَنْ أَبِي الصَّامِتِ قَالَ سَمِعْتُ أَبَا عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع وَ هُوَ يَقُولُ‏ مَنْ أَتَى قَبْرَ الْحُسَيْنِ ع مَاشِياً كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَهُ بِكُلِّ خُطْوَةٍ أَلْفَ حَسَنَةٍ وَ مَحَا عَنْهُ أَلْفَ سَيِّئَةٍ وَ رَفَعَ لَهُ أَلْفَ دَرَجَةٍ فَإِذَا أَتَيْتَ الْفُرَاتَ فَاغْتَسِلْ وَ عَلِّقْ نَعْلَيْكَ وَ امْشِ حَافِياً وَ امْشِ مَشْيَ الْعَبْدِ الذَّلِيلِ فَإِذَا أَتَيْتَ بَابَ الْحَائِرِ فَكَبِّرْ أَرْبَعاً ثُمَّ امْشِ قَلِيلًا ثُمَّ كَبِّرْ أَرْبَعاً ثُمَّ ائْتِ رَأْسَهُ فَقِفْ عَلَيْهِ فَكَبِّرْ أَرْبَعاً [فَكَبِّرْ وَ صَلِّ عِنْدَهُ وَ اسْأَلْ‏] وَ صَلِّ أَرْبَعاً وَ اسْأَلِ اللَّهَ حَاجَتَكَ.

Imam Sadiq-asws said: The Almighty Allah-azwj Records a thousand good deeds and erases a thousand sins for every step taken by one who performs the Ziyarat of Imam Hussain-asws on foot. He will also increase their status a thousand times for every step.

Then Imam-asws said: When you arrive at Euphrates, perform Ghusl,
‘وَ عَلِّقْ نَعْلَيْكَ وَ امْشِ حَافِياً وَ امْشِ مَشْيَ الْعَبْدِ الذَّلِيلِ’ and remove your shoes and walk barefoot like the ‘Mashi’ (walk) of a humble servant. Once you arrive at the door of the holy shrine, recite Takbir four times. Then walk a little and repeat this four more times. Then come near his head, stand there and repeat it four more times. Pray near his grave and ask Allah-azwj, the Exalted for your needs.[29]

حَدَّثَنِي أَبِي رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ عَنِ الْحُسَيْنِ بْنِ الْحَسَنِ بْنِ أَبَانٍ عَنْ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ أُورَمَةَ عَمَّنْ حَدَّثَهُ عَنْ عَلِيِّ بْنِ مَيْمُونٍ الصَّائِغِ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع قَالَ: يَا عَلِيُّ زُرِ الْحُسَيْنَ وَ لَا تَدَعْهُ قَالَ قُلْتُ مَا لِمَنْ أَتَاهُ مِنَ الثَّوَابِ قَالَ مَنْ أَتَاهُ مَاشِياً كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَهُ بِكُلِّ خُطْوَةٍ حَسَنَةً وَ مَحَى عَنْهُ سَيِّئَةً وَ رَفَعَ لَهُ دَرَجَةً فَإِذَا أَتَاهُ وَكَّلَ اللَّهُ بِهِ مَلَكَيْنِ يَكْتُبَانِ مَا خَرَجَ مِنْ فِيهِ مِنْ خَيْرٍ وَ لَا يَكْتُبَانِ مَا يَخْرُجُ مِنْ فِيهِ مِنْ شَرٍّ وَ لَا غَيْرَ ذَلِكَ فَإِذَا انْصَرَفَ وَدَّعُوهُ وَ قَالُوا يَا وَلِيَّ اللَّهِ مَغْفُوراً لَكَ أَنْتَ مِنْ حِزْبِ اللَّهِ وَ حِزْبِ رَسُولِهِ وَ حِزْبِ أَهْلِ بَيْتِ رَسُولِهِ وَ اللَّهِ لَا تَرَى النَّارَ بِعَيْنِكَ أَبَداً وَ لَا تَرَاكَ وَ لَا تَطْعَمُكَ أَبَداً.

Imam Sadiq-asws said, “O Ali! Perform the Ziyarat of Imam Hussain-asws and do not abandon it.” Ali asked, “What is the reward for one who goes to his Ziyarat?” Imam-asws replied: Allah-azwj Will Record a good deed and erase a sin for every step taken by one who performs the Ziyarat of Imam Hussain-asws on foot. He-azwj will also Add a rank to his rank. When he arrives at the grave, Allah-azwj will Appoint two angels to him who will only write the good that he speaks and not write anything else that he might say or do. When he leaves, they (the angels) will bid farewell to him and say: “O friend of Allah-azwj! You have been forgiven. You are from the party of Allah-azwj, party of Rasool Allah-saww and party of Ahl Al-Bayt-asws of Rasool Allah-saww. By Allah-azwj, you will never see Hellfire and it will never see or burn you.” [30]

حَدَّثَنِي مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ جَعْفَرٍ الْقُرَشِيُّ الرَّزَّازُ عَنْ خَالِهِ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ الْحُسَيْنِ بْنِ أَبِي الْخَطَّابِ عَنْ أَحْمَدَ بْنِ بَشِيرٍ السَّرَّاجِ عَنْ أَبِي سَعِيدٍ الْقَاضِي قَالَ: دَخَلْتُ عَلَى أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع فِي غُرَيْفَةٍ لَهُ وَ عِنْدَهُ مُرَازِمٌ فَسَمِعْتُ أَبَا عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ع يَقُولُ مَنْ أَتَى قَبْرَ الْحُسَيْنِ ع مَاشِياً كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَهُ بِكُلِّ خُطْوَةٍ وَ بِكُلِّ قَدَمٍ يَرْفَعُهَا وَ يَضَعُهَا عِتْقَ رَقَبَةٍ مِنْ وُلْدِ إِسْمَاعِيلَ وَ مَنْ أَتَاهُ بِسَفِينَةٍ فَكَفَتْ بِهِمْ‏ سَفِينَتُهُمْ نَادَى مُنَادٍ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ طِبْتُمْ وَ طَابَتْ لَكُمُ الْجَنَّةُ.

Imam Sadiq-asws said: The Almighty Allah-azwj will Record the reward of freeing a servant from the children of Ismail for one who performs the Ziyarat of Imam Hussain-asws on foot with every step he takes and each time he raises his foot and places it on the ground. And one who performs the Ziyarat of Imam Hussain-asws by ship, if his ship wrecks, a herald from the heavens will call out, “Glad tidings to you; enjoy the pleasures of Paradise.” [31]

Appendix II: Ahadith on Travelling Manners

عِدَّةٌ مِنْ أَصْحَابِنَا عَنْ أَحْمَدَ بْنِ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ عَنْ يَعْقُوبَ بْنِ يَزِيدَ عَنْ عِدَّةٍ مِنْ أَصْحَابِنَا عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ( عليه السلام ) قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ( صلى الله عليه وآله ) حَقُّ الْمُسَافِرِ أَنْ يُقِيمَ عَلَيْهِ أَصْحَابُهُ إِذَا مَرِضَ ثَلَاثاً .

A number of our companions, from Ahmad Bin Abu Abdullah, from Yaqoub Bin Yazeed, from a number of our companions,

(It has been narrated) from Abu Abdullah-asws having said: ‘Rasool-Allah-saww said: ‘A right of the traveller is that his companion stands over him (staying with him) when he is sick, for three (days)’.[32]

عَلِيُّ بْنُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ عَنْ أَبِيهِ عَنِ ابْنِ أَبِي عُمَيْرٍ عَنْ حَمَّادٍ عَنِ الْحَلَبِيِّ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ ( عليه السلام ) قَالَ إِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ أَشَدَّ مَا يَهُمُّ بِالْإِنْسَانِ إِذَا كَانَ وَحْدَهُ فَلَا تَبِيتَنَّ وَحْدَكَ وَ لَا تُسَافِرَنَّ وَحْدَكَ .

Ali Bin Ibrahim, from his father, from Ibn Abu Umeyr, from hammad, from Al Halby,

(It has been narrated) from Abu Abdullah-asws having said: ‘The Satan-la is the most troublesome with the human being when he was alone, therefore do not sleep alone, nor travel alone’.[33]

عَلِيُّ بْنُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ عَنْ أَبِيهِ عَنِ الْقَاسِمِ بْنِ مُحَمَّدٍ وَ عَلِيِّ بْنِ مُحَمَّدٍ الْقَاسَانِيِّ عَنْ سُلَيْمَانَ بْنِ دَاوُدَ عَنْ حَمَّادِ بْنِ عِيسَى عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ (عليه السلام) قَالَ فِي وَصِيَّةِ لُقْمَانَ لِابْنِهِ يَا بُنَيَّ سَافِرْ بِسَيْفِكَ وَ خُفِّكَ وَ عِمَامَتِكَ وَ خِبَائِكَ وَ سِقَائِكَ وَ إِبْرَتِكَ وَ خُيُوطِكَ وَ مِخْرَزِكَ وَ تَزَوَّدْ مَعَكَ مِنَ الْأَدْوِيَةِ مَا تَنْتَفِعُ بِهَا أَنْتَ وَ مَنْ مَعَكَ وَ كُنْ لِأَصْحَابِكَ مُوَافِقاً إِلَّا فِي مَعْصِيَةِ اللَّهِ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ.

Ali Bin Ibrahim, from his father, from Al-Qasim Bin Muhammad, and Ali Bin Muhammad Al-Qasany, from Suleyman Bin Dawood, from Hammaad Bin Isa, who has narrated the following:

Abu Abdullah-asws having said: ‘Luqman-as advised his-as son: ‘O my-as son! Travel with your sword, and your slippers, and your turban, and your tent, and your water container, and your needle, and your threads, and your shoe-repair kit, and your provision of medicines which are beneficial for you and the one is with you. And be in concordance with your companion except if it is in the disobedience to Allah-azwj Mighty and Majestic’.[34]

عَلِيُّ بْنُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ عَنْ أَبِيهِ عَنِ النَّوْفَلِيِّ عَنِ السَّكُونِيِّ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ (عليه السلام) قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ (صلى الله عليه وآله) عَلَيْكُمْ بِالسَّفَرِ بِاللَّيْلِ فَإِنَّ الْأَرْضَ تُطْوَى بِاللَّيْلِ.

Ali Bin Ibrahim, from his father, from Al-Nowfaly, from Al-Sakuny, who has narrated the following:

Abu Abdullah-asws has said: ‘The Rasool Allah-saww said: ‘It is on you to travel at night, for the ground folds up at night’. [35]

عَلِيُّ بْنُ إِبْرَاهِيمَ عَنْ أَبِيهِ عَنِ الْقَاسِمِ بْنِ مُحَمَّدٍ عَنْ سُلَيْمَانَ بْنِ دَاوُدَ الْمِنْقَرِيِّ عَنْ حَمَّادٍ عَنْ أَبِي عَبْدِ اللَّهِ (عليه السلام) قَالَ قَالَ لُقْمَانُ لِابْنِهِ إِذَا سَافَرْتَ مَعَ قَوْمٍ فَأَكْثِرِ اسْتِشَارَتَكَ إِيَّاهُمْ فِي أَمْرِكَ وَ أُمُورِهِمْ وَ أَكْثِرِ التَّبَسُّمَ فِي وُجُوهِهِمْ وَ كُنْ كَرِيماً عَلَى زَادِكَ وَ إِذَا دَعَوْكَ فَأَجِبْهُمْ وَ إِذَا اسْتَعَانُوا بِكَ فَأَعِنْهُمْ وَ اغْلِبْهُمْ بِثَلَاثٍ بِطُولِ الصَّمْتِ وَ كَثْرَةِ الصَّلَاةِ وَ سَخَاءِ النَّفْسِ بِمَا مَعَكَ مِنْ دَابَّةٍ أَوْ مَالٍ أَوْ زَادٍ

Ali Bin Ibrahim, from his father, from Al-Qasim Bin Muhammad, from Suleyman Bin Dawood Al-Munqary, from Hammaad, who has narrated the following:

Abu Abdullah-asws has said; ‘Luqman-as said to his-as son: ‘Whenever you travel with a group, take a lot of advice about them for your affairs and their affairs, and smile frequently in their faces, and be generous with your provisions. And if they call you, respond to them, and if they seek your support, help them. And be overcome them with three things – the length of silence, and the frequency of the Prayer, and generosity of the self with whatever is with you from the animal, or wealth, or provisions.

وَ إِذَا اسْتَشْهَدُوكَ عَلَى الْحَقِّ فَاشْهَدْ لَهُمْ وَ اجْهَدْ رَأْيَكَ لَهُمْ إِذَا اسْتَشَارُوكَ ثُمَّ لَا تَعْزِمْ حَتَّى تَثَبَّتَ وَ تَنْظُرَ وَ لَا تُجِبْ فِي مَشُورَةٍ حَتَّى تَقُومَ فِيهَا وَ تَقْعُدَ وَ تَنَامَ وَ تَأْكُلَ وَ تُصَلِّيَ وَ أَنْتَ مُسْتَعْمِلٌ فِكْرَكَ وَ حِكْمَتَكَ فِي مَشُورَتِهِ فَإِنَّ مَنْ لَمْ يُمْحِضِ النَّصِيحَةَ لِمَنِ اسْتَشَارَهُ سَلَبَهُ اللَّهُ تَبَارَكَ وَ تَعَالَى رَأْيَهُ وَ نَزَعَ عَنْهُ الْأَمَانَةَ

And if they ask you to testify to ‘الْحَقِّ’ the truth, so testify for it, and exhaust your opinion for them if they consult you. Then do not advise them until you are sure about it and reconsider it, and do not answer in your advice until you stand regarding it, and sit, and sleep, and eat, and Pray, and you are utilising your thoughts and your wisdom with regards to your advice. So the one who does not refine his advice for the one who consulted him, Allah-azwj Crucifies his opinion, and Removes from him the trust.

وَ إِذَا رَأَيْتَ أَصْحَابَكَ يَمْشُونَ فَامْشِ مَعَهُمْ وَ إِذَا رَأَيْتَهُمْ يَعْمَلُونَ فَاعْمَلْ مَعَهُمْ وَ إِذَا تَصَدَّقُوا وَ أَعْطَوْا قَرْضاً فَأَعْطِ مَعَهُمْ وَ اسْمَعْ لِمَنْ هُوَ أَكْبَرُ مِنْكَ سِنّاً وَ إِذَا أَمَرُوكَ بِأَمْرٍ وَ سَأَلُوكَ فَقُلْ نَعَمْ وَ لَا تَقُلْ لَا فَإِنَّ لَا عِيٌّ وَ لُؤْمٌ وَ إِذَا تَحَيَّرْتُمْ فِي طَرِيقِكُمْ فَانْزِلُوا وَ إِذَا شَكَكْتُمْ فِي الْقَصْدِ فَقِفُوا وَ تَآمَرُوا

And if you see your companions walking, so you should walk with them, and if you see them doing something, so do it with them, and if they give charity and give a loan, so give with them. And listen to the one who is older than you in age, and if he orders you and asks you, so say, Yes’, and do not say, ‘No’, for the ‘No’ is a fault and blameable. And if you are confused regarding your road, so stop and encamp, and if you are in doubt regarding the intended course, pause and plan.

وَ إِذَا رَأَيْتُمْ شَخْصاً وَاحِداً فَلَا تَسْأَلُوهُ عَنْ طَرِيقِكُمْ وَ لَا تَسْتَرْشِدُوهُ فَإِنَّ الشَّخْصَ الْوَاحِدَ فِي الْفَلَاةِ مُرِيبٌ لَعَلَّهُ أَنْ يَكُونَ عَيْناً لِلُّصُوصِ أَوْ يَكُونَ هُوَ الشَّيْطَانَ الَّذِي حَيَّرَكُمْ وَ احْذَرُوا الشَّخْصَيْنِ أَيْضاً إِلَّا أَنْ تَرَوْا مَا لَا أَرَى فَإِنَّ الْعَاقِلَ إِذَا أَبْصَرَ بِعَيْنِهِ شَيْئاً عَرَفَ الْحَقَّ مِنْهُ وَ الشَّاهِدُ يَرَى مَا لَا يَرَى الْغَائِبُ

And if you see one person, do not ask him about your direction of road, and do not heed his guidance, for the one person in the wild is suspect for he could be an eye for the thieves, or he could be the Satan-la who confused you. And be cautious of two persons as well, unless you can see what I-as don’t, for the intellectual, when he sees something with his own eyes recognises the truth from it, and the witness can see what the absentee does not.

يَا بُنَيَّ وَ إِذَا جَاءَ وَقْتُ صَلَاةٍ فَلَا تُؤَخِّرْهَا لِشَيْ‏ءٍ وَ صَلِّهَا وَ اسْتَرِحْ مِنْهَا فَإِنَّهَا دَيْنٌ وَ صَلِّ فِي جَمَاعَةٍ وَ لَوْ عَلَى رَأْسِ زُجٍّ وَ لَا تَنَامَنَّ عَلَى دَابَّتِكَ فَإِنَّ ذَلِكَ سَرِيعٌ فِي دَبَرِهَا وَ لَيْسَ ذَلِكَ مِنْ فِعْلِ الْحُكَمَاءِ إِلَّا أَنْ تَكُونَ فِي مَحْمِلٍ يُمْكِنُكَ التَّمَدُّدُ لِاسْتِرْخَاءِ الْمَفَاصِلِ

O my son! And when the time of Salat comes up, so do not delay it for anything, and offer Salat and seek comfort from it for it is the Religion. And Pray in congregation even if there is pushing upon the head. And do not sleep upon your animal for that is injurious to its back, and that is not from the actions of the wise except if you are in a carriage and it is possible for you to stretch your joints.

وَ إِذَا قَرُبْتَ مِنَ الْمَنْزِلِ فَانْزِلْ عَنْ دَابَّتِكَ وَ ابْدَأْ بِعَلْفِهَا قَبْلَ نَفْسِكَ وَ إِذَا أَرَدْتَ النُّزُولَ فَعَلَيْكَ مِنْ بِقَاعِ الْأَرْضِ بِأَحْسَنِهَا لَوْناً وَ أَلْيَنِهَا تُرْبَةً وَ أَكْثَرِهَا عُشْباً وَ إِذَا نَزَلْتَ فَصَلِّ رَكْعَتَيْنِ قَبْلَ أَنْ تَجْلِسَ وَ إِذَا أَرَدْتَ قَضَاءَ حَاجَةٍ فَأَبْعِدِ الْمَذْهَبَ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَ إِذَا ارْتَحَلْتَ فَصَلِّ رَكْعَتَيْنِ وَ وَدِّعِ الْأَرْضَ الَّتِي حَلَلْتَ بِهَا وَ سَلِّمْ عَلَيْهَا وَ عَلَى أَهْلِهَا فَإِنَّ لِكُلِّ بُقْعَةٍ أَهْلًا مِنَ الْمَلَائِكَةِ

And when you come close to the destination, so descend from your animal and begin by feeding it before yourself. And when you intend to encamp, so it is upon you to remain in a land, which is good in colour, soft in soil, and abundance of grass. And if you encamp, so Pray two cycles before you sit down. And if you intend to fulfill your need (toilet), go far away. And when you embark (upon your journey) Pray two cycles, and say farewell to the land on which you spent time, and send greetings of peace upon it and upon its people, because for every patch of land has its inhabitants from the Angels.

وَ إِنِ اسْتَطَعْتَ أَنْ لَا تَأْكُلَ طَعَاماً حَتَّى تَبْدَأَ فَتَتَصَدَّقَ مِنْهُ فَافْعَلْ وَ عَلَيْكَ بِقِرَاءَةِ كِتَابِ اللَّهِ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ مَا دُمْتَ رَاكِباً وَ عَلَيْكَ بِالتَّسْبِيحِ مَا دُمْتَ عَامِلًا وَ عَلَيْكَ بِالدُّعَاءِ مَا دُمْتَ خَالِياً وَ إِيَّاكَ وَ السَّيْرَ مِنْ أَوَّلِ اللَّيْلِ وَ عَلَيْكَ بِالتَّعْرِيسِ وَ الدَّلْجَةِ مِنْ لَدُنْ نِصْفِ اللَّيْلِ إِلَى آخِرِهِ وَ إِيَّاكَ وَ رَفْعَ الصَّوْتِ فِي مَسِيرِكَ.

If you are able to, do not eat food until you begin by giving charity from it, so do it. And it is upon you to recite the Book of Allah-azwj Mighty and Majestic as long as you are riding. And it is upon you for the Glorification for as long as you are working. And it is upon you to supplicate for as long as you are alone. And beware of travelling in the first part of the night. And it is upon you to travel from the middle of the night to its end. And beware of raising your voice during your travel’.[36]

[1] Walking from Najaf to Karbala during Arbaeen.

[2] Walking from Najaf to Karbala during Arbaeen.

[3] كتاب سليم بن قيس الهلالي، ج‏2، ص: 849, H. 43, an extract

[4] 40th day mourning ritual for Imam Hussainasws and martyrs of Karbala.

[5] Believers

[6] Camps set-up to look after Zaireen.

[7] Visitor to the Holy Shrine

[8] الكافي (ط – الإسلامية) ؛ ج‏8 ؛ ص102 , Al-Kafi, Vol. 8, H. 14521

[9] Merciful and son of Merciful

[10] ( 2) ق: 21/ 85/ 117، ج: 100/ 96.

[11] Nahjul Balagha, Sermon no. 14.

[12] The time of the appearance of the 12th Imamajfj

[13] وسائل‏الشيعة ج : 5 ص : 121, H. 6092.

[14] بحارالأنوار ج : 52 ص : 113, H. 24.

[15] Generous and son of generous forefather

[16] بحارالأنوار ج : 52 ص : 359, H. 127

[17] بحارالأنوار ج : 52 ص : 354, H. 115,  مستدرك‏الوسائل ج : 3 ص : 275, H 3565-  10

[18] Al-Kafi, Vol. 8, hadith, 14551

[19] Al-Kafi, vol. 8, H 14970, h 522

[20] Bihar Al Anwaar – V 32, The book of Fitna (Strife) And Ordeals, Ch 11 H 373 b

[21] Bihar Al-Anwaar V 73 – The book of Etiquettes – Ch 57 H 1

[22] Bihar Al-Anwaar V 73 – The book of Etiquettes – Ch 57 H 2

[23] Bihar Al-Anwaar V 73 – The book of Etiquettes – Ch 57 H 5

[24] Generous

[25] Kamil Al-Ziyarah, Ch. 84, h, 2

[26] كامل الزيارات ؛ النص ؛ ص132 Kamil ul Ziyarah, Chapter 49, H. 1

[27]  كامل الزيارات ؛ النص ؛ ص132 Kamil ul Ziyarah, Chapter 49, H. 2

[28] كامل الزيارات ؛ النص ؛ ص132 Kamil ul Ziyarah, Chapter 49, H. 3

[29] كامل الزيارات ؛ النص ؛ ص132 Kamil ul Ziyarah, Chapter 49, H. 4

[30] كامل الزيارات ؛ النص ؛ ص132 Kamil ul Ziyarah, Chapter 49, H. 6

[31] كامل الزيارات ؛ النص ؛ ص132 Kamil ul Ziyarah, Chapter 49, H. 9

[32] Al Kafi V 2 – The Book Of Social Relationships CH 26 H 4

[33] Al Kafi – V 6 – The Book of Outfits and the Beautification and the Magnanimity Ch 69 H 9

[34] Al-Kafi, Vol. 8, H. 14914

[35] Al-Kafi, Vol. 8, H. 14937

[36] Al-Kafi, Vol. 8, H. 14994