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Ashurkhana

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Ashurkhana

Hussainia

Hussainia in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Arabic (عربي) حسينية (ḥussainiā)
مأتم (ma'tam)
Hindi (हिंदी) इमामबाड़ा (imāmbāṛā)

आशुरख़ाना (āshurkhānā)

Persian (فارسى) حسینیه (ḥosseiniyeh)
Urdu (اُردوُ) امامباڑا (imāmbāṛā)
امامبارگاہ (imāmbārgāh)
عاشور خانہ (āshurkhānā)
حسينيہ (ḥussainiā)

A Hussainia, also known as an Ashurkhana or Imambargah, is a congregation hall for Shia commemoration ceremonies, especially those associated with the Remembrance of Muharram. The name comes from Husayn Ibn Ali, the grandson of Muhammad and an Imam of the Shia. Hussain was killed by Yazid I in Karbala, Iraq, over 1,300 years ago. Shias still mourn the death of Hussain every year on the day of Ashura in Hussainias all over the world.

A Hussainiya is different from a mosque in that it is intended mainly for gatherings for Muharram in the mourning of Hussain ibn Ali, and may not necessarily hold juma'at, or Friday Prayer.

In South Asia, a Hussainia can also be referred to as an imambara, imambargah, or ashurkhana. In Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates, it is called a ma'tam (مأتم). In Afghanistan and Central Asia, the equivalent term for a Shia congregation hall is takyakhana. Examples of Hussainias include the Bara Imambara and Imambara Ghufran Ma'ab, both in Lucknow, India, as well as the Imambara Wazeer Un Nisa in Amroha, India and the Hosseiniye Ershad in Tehran, Iran.

Panoramic view of Ashurkhana Sakina Begum Located in Hardoi

Notable Hussainias


  • Bara Imambara, in Lucknow, India
  • Chhota Imambara, in Lucknow, India
  • Nizamat Imambara, in Murshidabad, India
  • Badshahi Ashurkhana, in Hyderabad, India
  • Hosseiniyeh Ershad, in Tehran, Iran
  • Imambara Ghufran Ma'ab, in Lucknow, India
  • Imambargah Colonel Maqbool Hussain, in Rawalpindi, Pakistan
  • Azakhana Wazeer-un-Nisa, located in Amroha, India. The Azakhana was built in 1802 (1226 Hijri) with one Mosque.
  • Imambargah Haveli Sa'daat, one of the oldest Imambargahs in Gujranwala, Pakistan. It was built by the Naqvi Sadat family, who immigrated from Fateh garh churian, Punjab, India. In 1947, Syed Akbar Ali Shah, head of the Naqvi Saddat family, began organizing Majlis-e-Syed-ul-Shuhda with Imam Hussain from 1st to 9th Muharram. After his death, his sons Syed Ashiq Hussain Naqvi and Syed Shabbir Hussain Naqvi took over as social and religious heads of the family. Syed Shabbir Hussain Naqvi struggled to unite all of Pakistan's Shia Muslims under the leadership of Allama Mufti Jafar Hussain, and formed the first Shia political party of Pakistan, Tehrik-e-Nafaz-e-Fiqah-e-Jafaria (TNFJ). The first constitutional meeting of TNFJ was held at Imambargah Haveli Saddat, with notable Allamas in attendance. Allama Mufti Jafar Hussain was elected as first TNFJ President and Syed Shabbir Hussain Naqvi first Secretary General.
  • Imambargah Bait Aal e Imran, in Kotla Arab Ali Khan, Gujrat, Pakistan. The site was donated by Choudhary Ghulam Hassan, a Shia by birth, and his wife in 1979. Hassan's wife later became gravely ill, donating her jewelry to Syed Aulad Hussain Shah and Sain Rehmat Ali Butt for the construction of the Imambargah's walls. The men sold the jewelry and contributed their own money for the construction. Meanwhile, the local mullah received word that Shias were building an Imambargah and intended to hold Majlis, and complained to police. The police threatened Sain Rehmat and pressured him to move the Imambargah to another location, but Sain Rehmat refused. Due to the controversy, the first Majlis-e-Hussain was offered in Kakrali. Sain Rehmat fixed the date of 30th Muharram for Majlis, and the first to be held within the Imambargah took place in the 1980s. Other Muslims came to Kolta Arab Ali Khan, including Syed Riaz Hussain Shah, Syed Younas Ali Shah, and Ustad Ghulam Asghar. Today, many Muslims live in Kotla Arab Ali Khan and its surroundings, and the Imambargah offers 5 Majalis every year (13th Muharram, 30th Muharram, 12th Safar, 18th Safar, and 24th Safar) in Imambargah Bait e Aal e Imran. Sunni Muslims also attend Majalis-e-Hussain alongside Shia Muslims.

See also

External links

  • Encyclopedia Iranica
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