Salam to Imam Hussain

The martyrdom of Imam Hussain in the battlefield of Karbala is commemorated in various ways around the world. One of the traditions that developed in the subcontinent was Soz, Salam, Marsiya and Noha in urdu as part of the Majlis. Each of these have different moods and content. The Salam is paying respect to the various Heros and the soz is a short tragic poem themed around the events of Karbala. The marsiya is a longer recitation telling a story from Karbala and Noha is recited at the end of the majlis along with matam. Each of these deserves blog posts of their own and today I’m going to talk about a few of my favourite ways to say Salam to Imam Hussain.

Salam to Imam Hussain

Shah Sawar e Karbala Ke ShahSaware Ko Salam

I was reading this beautiful Salam to Imam Hussain and all the heroes associated with the tragic story of Karbala, even before I understood the meanings of the words. I was probably 5 and my sister 8 when we would cover our heads with small black dupattas and climb on the wooden takht at the very start of the majlis at our house. The words of the salam were written on a maths notebook with square boxes which we would place on the round goan takiya in the middle of the takht facing the audience. My dadi and nani would look on with pride and keep telling everyone for the 100th time that we are their granddaughters. I did not understand the agony and pain of the words till I grew older.

I also discovered this version recited beautifully by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan:

Shah Ast Hussain

My Nani always starts her Soz Khawani with these beautiful verses which remain my favourite.

Yo Salam Kar Lo HussaiN Ko

My sister recently shared this picture on Instagram as she prepped for the majlis at her house in Manila. This is a beautiful Salam to Imam Hussain and also one I recited regularly with my nani.

Salam ko Imam Hussain

Salam e Akhir

Listening to Nasir Jahan’s Salam e Akhir after the Majlis-e-Sham e Ghareeban on PTV was an annual tradition at our house. We would always listen to the majlis sitting on the ground and with lights dimmed. The women would cry openly and the men would wipe tears silently from their eyes. As a child my heart ached for Imam Hussain and his family. It’s the same love which makes tears fall effortlessly from my eyes whenever I hear this Salam even today. May this love flourish and grow in our next generations too and make us better humans.


Which ones are your favourite Salams in honour of Hazrat Imam Hussain?

Do read these other posts also related to Muharram and Karbala

Muharram and Karbala for Children

When to Expect When you Attend a Muharram Majlis

Muharram from my Childhood

12 thoughts on “Salam to Imam Hussain

  1. Loving your moharrum posts!sorry not getting a chance to comment on each as I’ve just been rushing through them while multitasking with majalis l. But I want to thank you for taking out time to write these. Each and every post is beautifully written and so relatable to us and I’m sure has opened another lens for non shias to view us as just normal people and not ‘the others’ 🙂

    1. Thanks for your comment! Yes, open lines of communication are so imp! Hope you’re having a spiritually rewarding Muharram! I miss Muharram in Pakistan so much

  2. Salam e Akhir still is a must for me, even though I haven’t been home for Muharram for at least a decade. Hauntingly beautiful verses expressing exactly what we feel for the able bait

    1. Yes the love for Ahle Bait is deeply rooted in our hearts and may it pass on with the same passion to the next generation!

  3. Great Job on your Moharrum posts…Thank you so much for writing & sharing them. JazakAllah Khair. I like a lot of Salaams but find Nasir Jahan’s Salam-e-Akhir especially very sad, touching & heart breaking!! He’s read it so beautifully. My mom used to recite it very frequently… sadly she passed away last year & I find it especially haunting every time I listen to it now…Like you said…’the tears just flow effortlessly’…Labbaik Ya Hussain!

    1. Lots of Duas for your mother! This love of Ahle Bait in your heart is all because of her efforts. Labaik Ya Hussain!

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