Core Blog

Part I – Ohbat Out of the Box

August 12, 2020

Words Sakina N.   
Header Credits Sakina N. 


The Ripples of Our Matam

Today was Eid-e-Ghadire-khum. As far as days go, it was rather melancholic. The rain was in a constant state of confusion, unable to decide whether to pour or stop. It continued to trickle down our window panes, whilst the wind howled against the trees, rattling the branches, and billowing dead leaves. 

My husband and I huddled under our respective heated blankets in our living room to listen to the waaz mubarak, trying to find the perfect balance between warmth and comfort. Whilst we were grateful to be able to listen to the waaz mubarak from previous years, something was missing. It did not feel like Eid

There was no masjid, no race to get a spot for namaz, no physically catching up with friends, no jamaat khana and, most importantly, the feeling of sitting in a crowd-filled masjid and listening to the waaz, doing matam, and praying marsiyas as well as qaseedas was absent.

As the days for the start of Ashara Mubarak grow ever closer, a sense of reluctant acceptance washes over me. I know that my phone will remain silent tomorrow. It will not vibrate constantly with news about where Ashara Mubarak will be this year. There will be no frantic calls from my dad to discuss buying flight tickets, booking hotel rooms or registering for waaz passes. No conversations with my cousin about her travel plans; just quiet. 

When I think of this feeling in my mind, I immediately picture a lake. A placid and unmoving one, a lake so still that its glistening blackish waters double as a mirror. Is this what Ashara Mubarak will be like this year?

Instead of the thousands of people, will it be just my husband and I this year?  Will the constant heat and sweat of squished up bodies be replaced by the cold winds of the Australian winters? What will a matam majlis of just two people feel like? Will we get lost in the lull of COVID-19 and be unable to reproduce the josh, which is befitting of the majlises of Imam Hussain (AS)?

Although thinking about these questions leaves me in a state of befuddlement, there is a flicker of hope. A ripple in the eerily still lake. It is Aqa Moula (TUS). Despite the endless uncertainty and devastation, the guiding force of Aqa Moula (TUS) has remained unchanged. 

I remember watching the live video of Aqa Moula (TUS) on Eid-al Fitr and feeling my heart warm up, tears prickle my eyes and beaming. It was undoubtedly the best moment of this year’s Ramazan. Similarly, I believe that though the coming days remain dubious, Aqa Moula (TUS) will help us make Ashara Mubarak in our houses equally remarkable.

Whilst we may not be physically sitting together in a masjid and listening to the waaz, we will be together in spirit, sharing our josh for Imam Hussain (AS) and making ripples with our matam in the otherwise stagnant lake.


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