About Ashara Mubaraka
- At the beginning of the Islamic year during the month of Muharram, the Dawoodi Bohra community - like millions of Muslims around the world - commemorates the martyrdom of Imam Husain ibn Ali AS, the grandson of Prophet Mohammed SAW.
- For the Dawoodi Bohra community, this ten-day period, known as Ashara Mubaraka, is a time of spiritual reflection and educational growth. Thousands of Dawoodi Bohras across the world travel to the city chosen for the central gathering by their leader, His Holiness Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin to listen to his sermons. Those that do not attend in person join their local congregations in which sermons are delivered by persons appointed by His Holiness.
- Starting on the 2nd day of the month of Muharram and delivered over nine days, the sermons explore themes of justice, sacrifice, brotherhood, forgiveness, kindness and piety - all qualities that manifest themselves in the tragedy that befell Imam Husain AS and his companions in Karbala, Iraq, which ultimately led to his martyrdom.
- This year, the Ashara Mubaraka sermons will take place between the 19th and 28th of August.
- Members close shops and businesses while professionals and students take leave during this nine-day period in order to participate dedicatedly and observe the sanctity of the occasion.
Online Sermons due to COVID-19
- In keeping with government guidelines and instructions on social distancing due to the Covid-19 pandemic, this year, Dawoodi Bohra communities all over the world will instead observe Ashara Mubaraka at home with their families by following prayers and sermons online, just as they have done during Ramadan and other recent religious occasions.
- They will be listening to and watching recordings of the Ashara sermons delivered by His Holiness Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin as well as his father, Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin, and grandfather, Syedna Taher Saifuddin.
- Bohras are making technical preparations and upgrades to ensure that they can observe these important days from home as best they can. Local jamaats (congregations) and youngsters are especially making sure that senior citizens have the necessary facilities to participate in the online sermons.
- Members are hand-making and decorating their homes with banners and flags bearing Quranic verses as well as the names of the Prophet Mohammed SAW and his family, to recreate the spiritual ambience of the masjid or centre where they would normally congregate during these days.
Meals at home provided by Community Kitchens
- During Ashara Mubaraka community members would normally gather daily for shared meals after the sermons and members would vie for the honour of hosting them. This year, due to the current situation, cooked meals will be sent to their homes through the community kitchens commonly known as ‘Faiz al-Mawaid al-Burhaniyah.’
- Those involved in preparing and distributing these meals are being given instructions and SOPs through video conferencing and other official communication channels emphasising the importance of maintaining hygiene and social distancing at all times.
Adhering to Government Guidelines
- Crucially, all Dawoodi Bohras across the globe continue to avoid large gatherings and strictly follow local regulations and guidelines on social distancing, wearing masks, and maintaining high standards of hygiene, just as they have been doing since the Covid-19 pandemic began.
- While Dawoodi Bohras look forward to a time when they can congregate as a community at their local masjid, until that day comes they shall continue to pray and observe religious duties according to local regulations, keeping their members and neighbours safe, and playing their part in the fight against Covid-19.
For more information on Ashara Mubaraka, please visit https://www.thedawoodibohras.com/faith/ashara-mubaraka/