Karbala and Beyond 3

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THE NOBLE MOTIVES BEHIND IMAM HUSAIN’S
REVOLUTION

Such motives were numerous. Some of them stemmed from the
grievances of the general public, while others were ideological in
nature and noble in objective. They may be summed up as follows:
1) The most urgent need was to stop the attempts to distort the Islamic
concepts and code of conduct, particularly the falsification of hadith as
discussed above. This was of the utmost significance; it preoccupied
the minds of responsible Muslims at the time. Such fabrication was
quite rampant, epidemic in nature, festered by the funds available for
those who rushed to please the Umayyads with their pens, those who
did not hesitate to sell their religion for a trifling. Such fabrication was
poisonous in effect, and it affected the lives of all Muslims, and it still
does. It was giving the Umayyads a free hand to do whatever they
desired of unfair and unethical policies in dealing with their subjects.
The mask of religion with which they used to hide their un-Islamic
conduct was quite dangerous. In the long run, such danger would
eventually change the pristine concepts introduced by Islam and
substitute them with anything but Islam. Stripping such a mask and
exposing the true picture of the Umayyads was the most urgent task of
a revolutionary like Imam al-Husain (ع).
2) The State’s structure was built on un-Islamic premises. Quraish was
born to rule; non-Arabs were second-class citizens who formed the
base of the society’s pyramid. That was the general social picture of the
Islamic world under the Umayyad’s rule. Anyone who dared to express
an opinion which did not agree with that of the Umayyads had to be
placed under house arrest if not altogether eliminated. His property
would then be confiscated and his life would be at stake. He would live
in fear for the rest of his miserable life. Nowadays, there are millions of
Muslims who live under such conditions. You see, the Umayyads are
not dead; they are very much alive and well…
3) The Umayyads considered the Islamic world as their own real estate
property. The zakat and other Islamic taxes were levied, but nobody
knew where the funds went. Large gifts were doled out from the state
treasury (called in Islam bayt al-mal) to governors, government
officials, tribal chiefs, army commanders, and officers who surpassed
others in their cruelty and oppression… Large sums of money were
spent on activities which Islam prohibits: racing, gambling, wines,
slave women to entertain the high class and the people in power, etc.
The majority of Muslims were left on the brink of starvation while the
ruling clique enjoyed the social and material privileges. It very much is
like what one sees happening nowadays in many Muslim countries. Let
us face it; most Muslims are nowadays the laughing stocks of the
world; راجعلون اليله انلا و لل انا Inna Lillah wa Inna Ilayhi Rajioon (We
belong to Allah, and to Him shall we return).
4) The Muslims had apparently become accustomed to the un-Islamic
rule of the Umayyads as time passed by. Their resistance gradually
slackened, and some people began adjusting to the new realities. The
revolutionary spirit of Islam began to disappear little by little from the
Muslims’ lives and thoughts. A new stimulant to their souls was
necessary in order to bring life back to their misled souls and to restore
the Islamic conduct and way of life to the society.

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