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Imam Ali ibn Abi Talib: Legacy of courage, justice, and martyrdom

On the occasion of the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Ali ibn Abi Talib, the fourth caliph of Muslims around the world and the son-in-law of the Prophet, Amir al-Mu’minin, Imam al-Muttaqin, may peace be upon him, is being observed.

How did the martyrdom of Imam Ali occur?

The Prophet Muhammad, may peace and blessings be upon him, used to say about Imam Ali, “Ali has the same relation to me as Aaron had to Moses, peace be upon them.

“Brave as he was, he fought fiercely in battles like Khaybar and played a crucial role in the conquests. His justice was such that the first caliph, Hazrat Umar, said, “If Ali weren’t there, Umar would have perished.

“His knowledge was such that the Prophet Muhammad said, “I am the city of knowledge, and Ali is its gate.” At times he said, “The best decision-makers among you are Ali.”

Imam Ali, may peace be upon him, spent twenty years of his life in seclusion after the departure of the Prophet Muhammad. In the year 25 AH, Muslims entrusted him with the Islamic caliphate. Initially, he refused, but when the Muslim’s insistence grew, he accepted under the condition that he would rule strictly according to the Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad, and wouldn’t compromise on any principle.

Muslims accepted this condition, but the era couldn’t endure his pure religious governance. Many stood against him fearing the loss of their power under his rule. Imam Ali considered confronting them his duty and engaged in battles like Jamal, Siffin, and Nahrawan with the same courage and bravery witnessed in Badr, Khandaq, and Khaybar.

Unfortunately, peace, equality, and the noble teachings of Islam couldn’t withstand the animosity of those who sought power.On the 19th of Ramadan, 40 AH, during the morning prayer in the Mosque of Kufa, Ibn Muljam attacked him with a poisoned sword.

Imam Ali, may peace be upon him, endured extreme pain and suffering for three days until he passed away. During this time, he imparted his final advice to his sons, Imam Hasan and Imam Hussain, the leaders of paradise.

When his killer was brought before him, Imam Ali saw his pale face and tears streaming from his eyes. He felt mercy for him and instructed his sons not to be harsh with him. If they sought retribution, it should be equivalent.

Eventually, the poison took its toll, and on the 21st of Ramadan, during the Fajr prayer, Imam Ali’s martyrdom occurred amidst cries and lamentations. His resting place is in Najaf, Iraq, and his personality still serves as a beacon of humanity and a means of salvation.

Commemorative gatherings and processions are held in his remembrance, where the virtues and trials of Imam Ali are recounted.

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