Imam Hossein (PBUH) never acted under the influence of anger, and he never distanced from moderation and gratitude. One of signs of his benignity and gratitude that shows how he had triumphed against the factors of anger and hatred was the watering of the army of Hurr. When the army of Hurr, who were ordered to block the way to the Imam Hossein (PBUH), arrived in the heat of the day, Imam (PBUH) witnessed the thirst of Hurr and his army, and ordered to water them and their horses. Due to Imam’s order, the enemy’s army, including their horses, was watered and water was poured to the legs and bellies of their horses and camels.
Ali bin Ta’an Maharebi, the last man in the army, said: I arrived later that all others; Imam (PBUH) saw my situation; he spoke blissfully and with highest grace and kindness with the accent of the people of Hijaz:
“Lay down the camel.” I laid down the camel, and then he said: “turn the opening of the large leathern bottle and drink.” I was not able to drink. Imam (PBUH) came forward and turned the opening of the bottle for me to drink.1
Among other instances of his patience and gratitude was his refusal to start the battle. Although he knew that the immoral army will never have mercy upon him and his dears, and although they behaved in a way that made it difficult to tolerate their actions, he reacted perfectly and neither he nor his company did not put their hands on their swords.
When the letter of Ibn Ziad was delivered to Hurr ordering him to be harsh with Imam Hossein (PBUH) and force them to settle in a desert without water and plants, Zoheir bin Qin said to Imam (PBUH): I swear to Allah (SWT) that the army which will join these will be much larger, let us battle this group now. Imam (PBUH) said: “I will not start the battle”.2
Also when water was cut on Imam and his companions and his entire army including men, women, old and young, sick and healthy, and even the horses and camels were thirsty, and he could hear the cry of the thirsty, he refused to start the war.
Even when the idol of viciousness, the wicked Shemr, approached the tents of Imam (PBUH) to find a suitable spot for attacking the tents, he saw a dug channel that the army of Imam had made a fire in it; and then he offended Imam; Moslem bin Osaje who was an exceptional archer asked Imam to target Shemr and make the earth clean from his presence. But Imam did not allow him, for he did not like to start the battle.3 Seemingly he preferred their stand to have a defensive character.
These are historical evidence which proves Imam Hossein’s patience from his initial departure of Medina to the land of Karbala and his place of martyrdom throughout this journey. Patience is a significant proof of pure and holy intention which is far away from any worldly desire for Imam Hossein (PBUH) and his great movement.
1. al-Irshaad, shekh mofid, vol. 2, pg. 78
2. al-Irshaad, shekh mofid, vol. 2, pg. 83-84. Al-Akhbar al-Tawaal pg. 251-252
3. al-Irshaad, shekh mofid, vol. 2, pg. 96