Lady Soukayna (a.s.)

Imam Husain (a.s.): “Regarding Sakina, she is engrossed by the perpetual beauty of God and hence she is not ready to marry anyone...

Imam Husain (a.s.): “Regarding Sakina, she is engrossed by the perpetual beauty of God and hence she is not ready to marry anyone.”

Sakina was one of the daughters of Imam Husain. She and her brother Abdullah (known as Ali-Asghar)1 were from the same mother, Rabab. Based on the most reliable historical documents, Sakina must have been over the age of 9 in Karbala. Since her cousin, Hasan Mothanna (the eldest son of Imam Hasan who was miraculously saved on the day of Ashoora after losing consciousness during the battle) had asked for her hand in marriage. As a matter of fact, Imam Husain did not give her to Hasan, the reason being, she had been engrossed by the eternal beauty of God, as Imam Husain has described her character. Instead, he offered his older daughter, Fatima.

It is interesting to know that she was about 70 years old when she died in the year 117 A.H.2 Her life coincided with the 4 Imams, i.e. her father, her brother and her nephews Imam Baqir and Imam Sadeq. She was such a knowledgeable lady that many Shiite and Sunni scholars have written her biography.3

Sakina at Karbala

She witnessed the whole catastrophe of Karbala. On the day of Ashoora she heard the painful voice of her father calling for assistance. In fact, she is one of the eye witness reporters of Ashoora who has quoted many things for us.

I am wondering which one of these to choose?

- whether the time that the bloodstained horse of Imam Husain came back to the tents,

- the time that she threw herself on the body of her father, when in the evening of Ashoora her caravan passed over the martyrs,

- her painful experience of being exhibited for sale in the markets of Kofa and Damascus,

- her experience of being bound by iron chains all the way to Kofa and Damascus,

- or ...

I believe the most heart breaking part of her tragedy, in the evening of Ashoora, when all the tents had been set on fire. Imagine the scene! Imagine the young children, orphaned boys and girls who had just lost their fathers. All throughout the day their throats had been on fire due to the intense thirst, and now their tents were on fire too. At the same time, the barbaric army of Ibn Ziad was plundering the tents. The whole land of Karbala was full of fire, smoke, plundering and savagery.

Let us listen to one piece of the story from Sakina herself: “I was in my tent when the enemies of Allah attacked it. They were so cruelly looking for whatever they could plunder, until one of them noticed the necklace that I was wearing. He attacked me, trying to grab it from my neck. I was escaping from him until he pulled off my scarf. I fell down unconscious and all I remember was that I awoke in the bosom of my aunt, Zainab.”

* Article Author : Sheikh Mansour Leghaei. www.ihic.org.au

1- Thre are two different narrations in regards to the name of the baby of Imam Husain. According to Ibn Shahr Ashoob and Ibn Tawoos, the name is Ali-Asghar, whereas Mofid in his book Ekhtesas, confirms the name as Abdullah.
2- Tabari 8:228, Shadharatul-Dhahab 1:154, Ibn-Athir 5:71
3- As there are so many misconceptions regarding the life of lady Sakina, for the best study of her life see: Moqarram: Sayyedah Sakina.

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