During the battle of Seffin, Amir al-Mu’minin Imam Ali sent a young person with a veil on his face to front of the battlefield as an anonymous fighter.
His fighting skills were so impressive, it seemed that the young lad had the whole field in his hands.
The Shaam (Syrian) Army realized the young soldier is indeed a brave and strong one who has come to the frontline. Muawiyah’s army advisers started to consult him to send an equivalent warrior to face the young lad. Due to the fear which had overcome them, they could not decide who to send. Finally Mu’awiyah decided to send one of his bravest leaders and warriors who had been famous to have the power of fighting thousands of other soldiers. Mu’awuyah called him and said: go to the battlefield and fight him.
The warrior said: Oh my master; people know me as one who can fight ten thousand men; how could you send me to fight this kid?
Mu’awiyah said: then what should I do?
He said: I have seven sons; I’ll send one of them to fight him.
The warrior sent one of his sons to the battlefield; it didn’t take long that the young lad killed his son. He then sent his second son who was also killed by the anonymous soldier. He then sent his third, fourth until his seventh son was killed by the young soldier.
At this point warrior himself decided to hit to the battlefield and face the young lad. He yelled his slogans and charged toward the young lad; they had a number of hits back and forth, but after a while the young lad, in front of both army’s eyes, knocked the father down and sent him off to join his seven sons.
Both armies were stunned and impressed at the bravery of this young soldier. At this moment, Amir al-Mu’minin (PBUH) called him to return to the army.
The commander of the army, Imam Ali (PBUH) went to greet his brave fighter. Imam took the veil off his face and kissed his forehead. Everyone witnessed that the young lad was the Moon of Bani Hashim, Abbas Ibn Ali (PBUT).(1)
The history of Islam has always remembered Qamar Bani Hashim as a brave heart and strong individual. After his birth, Amir al-Mu’minin (PBUH) named him Abbas; a name which showed bravery from the very beginning; as had inherited Alavi bravery from his father and Aamiri bravery from his mother.(2)
The signs of bravery and dignity could be witnessed in his face from childhood. While he became a young man he was so firm and steady as if Amir al-Mu’minin (PBUH) has come to battlefield as a young person for a second time.
A point which is worth the attention about the life of Ab al-Fadhl al-Abbas is that, while his bravery and courage was unique, but the ruling force in him was wisdom and religious insight; and certainly not emotions and the feeling of youth.
History recalls the day in which the body of Imam Hassan (PBUH) was attacked by arrows upon burial. Abbas was a young man and full of courage; when he witnessed the brutal attack, he could not be patient anymore and he decided to attack the wicked group.
However, the same Abbas who became a shield and crushed the enemy at Seffin battle, when he received the order from Imam Hussain (PBUH) to prevent any aggression and the need to be patient according to the will of Imam Hassan (PBUH) (3), he accepts. Abbas favored obedience to his Imam over personal emotions and feelings.
The Comparison of these two scenes in the life of Abbas shows clearly how persistent he was in obeying his Imam; and how he utilized his bravery in defending the religion and submission to the command of the Imam. That is why Imam Sadiq (PBUH) in his pilgrimage says:
“Peace be upon you o righteous servant, the obedient to Allah, His Prophet and Amir al-Mu’minin and Hassan and Hussain (peace be upon all of them)” (4)
(The above is a selection from “The Flag Bearer of Karbala”, by Muhammad Muhammdi Ishtehardi (with some additions))
The Roshd Website congratulates all Muslims, especially you dear friend, upon 4th of Sha’ban, the birthday anniversary of the son of Amir al-Mu’minin (PBUH) and defender of religion of Allah (SWT),
Hadrat Ab al-Fadl al-Abbas (PBUH).
1. Allamah Sayyed Abd alRazzaq Mousavi Muqaram, the author of “Al-Abbas” on page 242 narrates the story above from the book “Kebrit Ahmar” by Muhammad Baqir Birjandi, vol. 3, pg, 24.
2. The Mother of Abbas was Fatimah, daughter of Hezaam Ibn Khalid Kalbi from the tribe of Bani Kelaab. She was later named Umm al-Banin. Her fathers and ancestors were known for their courage amongst the Arabian tribes. Aamir ibn Maalek, her second great grandfather from the mother side was said to be the second bravest person (in Arabian tribes) after Amir al-Mu’minin (PBUH) according to some scholars.
3. “I ask you for the sake of Allah that in my burial ceremony no bloodshed even a small amount happens.” (From the will of Imam Hassan (PBUH) to his brother Imam Hussain (PBUH), Al-Khara’ij wa al-Jara’ih, vol. 1, p. 242)
4. An excerpt from the Ziarat of Ab al-Fadhl al-Abbas taught by Imam Sadiq (PBUH), Kamil al-Ziaraat, p. 257