Of the several prescribed Ziyarat of Imam Husayn (as), Ziyarat Nahiyah has a special place as it is recited by Imam Mahdi (as) himself. One of the most important features of this Ziyarat is that through different phrases, Imam Mahdi (as) describes the events of Ashura and the agony that Imam al-Husayn (as) and his family faced on that horrific and ominous day. This ziyarat is like Imam Mahdi (as) has himself recited a marsiyah for his grandfather.
This Ziyarat is replete with divine recognition, guidance, spirituality, knowledge of religion, lessons for humanity, and the historical facts.
The text of this Ziyarat can be divided into the following ten major parts:
- Offering peace and salutations to the Prophets from the earliest ones up to Prophet Mohammed (sawa), and then his pure progeny (as) in addition to describing some of their attributes. For instance, we recite: “Peace be upon Adam, the chosen one of Allah from among His creation …”
- Offering peace and salutations to the Chief of Martyrs (as) and enumerating some of his spiritual qualities and divine titles: “Peace be upon Husayn who sacrificed himself up to the last drops of the blood of his heart. Peace be upon him, who obeyed Allah secretly and openly… Peace be upon the son of the Garden of refuge. Peace be upon the son of Zamzam and al-Safaa. Peace be upon him who was saturated in (his) blood …”
- Sending salutations to the martyrs of Karbala, in general, who sacrificed their selves for the divine cause: “Peace be upon the bloodstained chests… Peace be upon the pallid bodies… Peace be upon the dismembered limbs. Peace be upon the heads raised upon lances …”
- Stating the motivations, wishes, and aims for visiting Imam Husayn (as): “Peace be upon you! Indeed, I intended your visitation and am hopeful of achieving the prosperity that is with you. Salutations to you, salutations from he who recognizes your sanctity, is a sincere (believer) in your guardianship, seeks nearness to Allah through your love, and is aloof from your enemies”
- Bearing witness to the Imam’s exemplary way of conduct: “I bear witness that you certainly established prayer, gave alms, enjoined good, forbade evil and transgression, obeyed Allah, never disobeyed Him, held fast to Him and to His rope, pleased Him, and held Him in awe …”
- Explaining the Imam’s method of opposing evil: “when tyranny became wide-spread, injustice removed its veil, wickedness called upon its followers… the knowledge demanded you for disavowal (of falsehood), and made it incumbent on you to struggle against the deviant. Therefore, you set out in company of your children, kinsfolk, followers, and supporters, disclosed the truth and clear proofs, summoned people towards Allah with wisdom and fine exhortation …”
- Presenting some of the calamities and afflictions that befell the Imam, and describing his martyrdom and the capture of his family: “The enemy then surrounded you from all sides, weakened you by inflicting wounds, while you did not have any helper left, and you were bereaved yet patient …”
- Enumerating the depth of the crime: “Certainly, by killing you, they have killed Islam, disrupted (the truth of) prayer and fasting, revoked the (prophetic) customs and the (divine) laws… Certainly, (by this event,) the Messenger of Allah (sawa) was wronged, left alone, and denied vengeance, the Book of Allah, the mighty and the majestic, was again abandoned …”
- Relating the mourning ceremonies of the Prophets, Angels, and the cosmos: “Indeed, the Messenger (sawa) became distressed and his depressed heart wept. The Angels and the Prophets offered their condolences to him for your martyrdom. Your mother, al-Zahra, became distressed and bereft of you. Legions of Angels came in waves to offer their condolences to your father, the Leader of the Faithful …”
- Praying to Allah and imploring Him: “O Allah! By the sanctity of this exalted place (the tomb of Imam Husayn (as)), bestow blessings upon Mohammed and the family of Mohammed, assemble me in their company, and admit me to Paradise by their intercession …”
A blend of wisdom, cognizance, spirituality, ethics, elegy, enthusiasm, devotion, along with a detailed account of the events has made this divinely inspired Ziyarat, one of the most insightful Ziyarat of Imam Husayn (as) for the followers of Ahle Bayt (as).
May Allah hasten the advent of Imam Mahdi (as), the reviver of the religion of Allah, the avenger of the blood of the Chief of Martyrs (as) from the oppressors, and the establisher of peace and justice over the globe. Aameen!