October 12, 2016
|Last Year Celebrated On||13 October 2015|
|Present Year Celebrated On||12 October2016|
|Next Year Will Be Celebrated On||Yet to be announced|
Muḥarram is observed in the first month of the Islamic calendar. Muharram is Arabic word which means forbidden. It is considered as the holiest month same as the Ramdan. Some Muslims practice fast during these days. The tenth day of Muharram is considered as the Day of Ashura. On this day Shia Muslims mourns.
Sunni Muslims practice fast during this day, as they follow hadith in which it is said that on the 10th day of Muharram Musa (Moses) and his people beat the Egyptian Pharaoh; accordingly Muhammad asked Muslims to fast on this day.
Why it is celebrated?
Muharram signifies Islamic New Year for both Sunnis and Shias Muslim communities. As per history perspective, this day fighting is prohibited. The first ten days of this month represents the battle of Karbala, where Hazrat Imam Husain and his family and supporters were brutally murdered by Yazid’s army. Shia Muslims recall this occasion by mourning.
How Is Muharram Celebrated?
The Shia Muslims believe Muharram to be the period of mourning and remembering sacrifice of Hazrat Imam Husain. They start mourning from the first night of Muharram and continue for the next 2 months and 8 days. Shia Muslims wear black dresses on the first day of Muharram and attend majlis (assemblies) where the orators narrate the Karbala’s battle, bravery of Hazrat Imam Husain and his people. The black color is symbolizing mourning. They restrict themselves from music and joyous events, to avoid distraction from the sorrowful historic event. On the 10th day, Shia Muslims take out large processions; they walk barefoot on the roads, while the drums are beaten in the background. They chant and weep loudly and mourn for Husain, his family and his followers. To express their grief, they beat their chest with hands, known as matam. Others thrash their bodies with chains or whips, consisting of small knives and sharp objects, thereby drawing out blood. While Sunni Muslims observe the occasion as a festival, they observe fasts as Prophet Muhammad stated that the best fasts after the Ramadan are those of the month of Muharram. The fasts can be practiced for the first ten days of Muharram or on the 9th and 10th day of Muharram or on the 10th and 11th day of Muharram. It is not necessary to do fasting its completely an individual choice to do it or not.