Abbas was with Amiralmomenin, Imam Hassan and Imam Hossein since his birth, and had enjoyed the spring of their knowledge and virtue.
Abbas lived with Ali (a.s.) for fourteen years, when Ali (a.s.) was struggling with the enemies. Abbas participated in some of the battles. At 12 years old, he was brave, fearless and hero, and at the same age, he could cope with the champions and warriors. Ali (a.s.) did not let him, as well as Imam Hassan and Imam Hossein to fight. They were reserves for the future days of Islam, and Abbas should keep his life, power and courage for Karbala, and be the standard-bearer of Hossein’s host.
Some of the instances of his bravery in Saffein battle has been registered, and if the narration is authentic, it indicates his prowess in the teen ages and twelve years old.
Didn’t his 13 years old nephew, Qassem, create the epic beside his uncle that all admired him? Didn’t his father, Ali Ebne Abitaleb (a.s.), fight at youth with the Arab famous champions, like Marhab in Kheybar battle, and Amro Ebne Abdovad in Khandaq battle,
and kill them? Wasn’t Abbas the brother of Imam Hassan, Imam Hossein, Mohammad Hanafye, Zeynab and Kolthoum? Weren’t his ancestors from mother’s side in the Kallab clan all among the warriors and cavaliers in fighting, bravery, swordsmanship and javelin throwing? Abbas was the meeting of two vessels of bravery, both from father’s side, Ali (a.s.), and mother’s side. Now the epic which he displayed at youth:
On one of the days of Saffein battle, a youth man came from Ali’s host, who had covered his face, and his actions showed the signs of courage, awe and strength. No one from the Syrian host dared to come to the field. All were watching the battle scene fearfully and anxiously. Moavieh, called one of his host’s men, named Ebne Shaetha, who was a warrior equal to thousands, and said: Fight with this young man.
He said: O Amir, the people consider me equal with ten thousands men. How do you order me to fight with this young man? Moavieh asked: what we shall do? Ebne Shaetha said: I have seven sons. I will send one of them to kill him. Moavieh agreed. He sent one of his sons, but he was killed by the young man. All of his sons were killed one by one by the young man from Ali’s (a.s.) host.
Ebne Shaetha himself came to the field, saying: O young man, you killed all of my sons. By God, I will kill you. He attacked and the struggle was started. He also killed Ebne Shaetha and he joined his sons. All were amazed and surprised. Amiralmomenin called him, and asked to unveil his face, and kissed his forehead. He was the moon of Hashemites, Abbas Ebne Ali (a.s.). It has been also narrated that in Saffein battle, Moavieh’s host found control on the water, and Ali’s (a.s.) host were thirsty. When Hazrat Ali instructed a number of his men to go with Hossein and open the river, Abbas Ebne Ali too was besides and with his brother.
On 40 A.H., the bloody event in the Kufa prayer sanctuary occurred. Abbas Ebne Ali was fourteen years old when Ali (a.s.) was martyred, and saw the night and hidden burial of Amiralmomein (a.s.). Undoubtedly, this great grief hurt his sensitive spirit severely. But after father, he had a good support like Hassan and Hossein.
Abbas never forgot the advice of his father at night of 21st of Ramadan on the eve of martyrdom. Ali (a.s.) asked him not to leave alone Hossein on Ashura and in Karbala. He knew that bitter days will come, and he shall strengthen his endeavor and courage, and sacrifice himself in Karbala to join eternality.
Ten bitter years passed, when his brother Imam Hassan Mojtaba (a.s.) was appointed to Imamate. The tricks of Moavieh impelled him to accept the imposed reconciliation. The oppressions of Umayyads had increased. Hojar Ebne Odai and his companions were martyred. Amro Ebne Hamaq Khazaei was martyred. Sternness with Ali’s family was continued. The preachers and orators affiliated to Moavieh’s court, reviled his father, Ali (a.s.). Abbas Ebne Ali witnessed those heart-breaking days till martyrdom of Imam Hassan (a.s.). When Imam Mojtaba was poisoned and martyred, Abbas Ebne Ali was 24 years old, and again he had to suffer another grief.
When Hashemites mourned for martyrdom of Imam Mojtaba (a.s.), his relatives met again the experience of demise of Prophet (s.a.w.a.), Fatima Zahra and Ali Mortaza, and their grieves were renewed. House of Imam Hassan was full of tear and agony. Abbas Ebne Ali too was one of those who wept bitterly and screamed in agony for his brother.
There was no other choice save forbearance of the grief, and leaving oneself to Divine decree, and preparing himself for the more bitter days. Imam Hassan Mojtaba (a.s.) was bathed and buried. Abbas accompanied with his other brothers (Imam Hossein & Mohammad Hanafieh) participated in the bathing ceremonies of the clean body of Imam Hassan (a.s.). When Imam Hassan’s coffin was brought to the Prophet’s shrine, Marvanian thought that they want to bury him there, and prevented them, and shooted his coffin.
At this time, the anger of zealous Hashemite youths was provoked, and if Sayedoshohada (a.s.) had not invited to patience and self-control, they had killed the spiteful enemies. Among Hashemite youths, Abbas too moped, but forbore as he was obliged to. He wanted to put them to the sword, but Hossein Ebne Ali did not let him, and invited him to continence and patience, and remembered the will of Imam Mojtaba (a.s.) who had told no blood shall be shed!
Later, Abbas Ebne Ali (a.s.) lived with his honorable brother, Sayedoshohada (a.s.) and the other youths of Prophet’s Household, and experienced vicissitudes of life.
A few years after martyrdom of his father, and at the beginning of Imamate of Imam Mojtaba, when Abbas was eighteen years old, he married with Lobabeh, daughter of Abdollah Ebne Abbas. Ebne Abbas was a tradition narrator, Quran commentator and qualified and eminent student of Ali (a.s.).
The spiritual and mental character of this lady was formed at the house of this commentator and was adorned with knowledge and courtesy. She gave birth to two sons, Abidollah and Fazl, and both of them became the great scholars of religion and Quran promoters. Some of his nephews too were among the tradition narrators and religion scholars at the time of other Imams. His offsprings followed his way in the next generations, and were all among the scholars and votaries. He lived in Medina and among the Hashemites until 60 A.H., and the epic of Karbala and his great role in the event. We will explain this part of his life in the future.
Abbas was with his brother, Hossein (a.s.), all through his life and his youth season. He was respected and honorable among the Hashemite youths, making a total group of about thirty youths in a circle of love and loyalty, all ready to defend Imam Hassan and Imam Hossein. In the meetings and circles, it was talked of glory of these youths, and in particular the awe, zeal and sense of honor of Abbas.
After death of Moavieh, when the governor of Medina wanted to talk about letter and request of Yazid from Imam Hossein (a.s.) to pay homage to him, and in the visit of Valid with Imam in the royal residence (Darolemareh), thirty of Hashemite youths, commanded by Abbas Ebne Ali (a.s.), were waiting and watching outside of Valid’s house, for instruction of Imam, to enter and intervene if required. Those who moved from Medina to Mecca, and thereof to Karbala, were headed by Abalfazl (a.s.).
These are parts of events in Abbas life during youth period till the epic of Ashura. Abbas devoted himself to the love of Hossein, and became eternal. May the blessing and peace of Allah and all the saints be upon him.
Face of Abalfazl (a.s.)
Both face of Abbas and his morality and mentality were beautiful. Inward and outward of Abbas was shiny. His bright and shining face resembled him like a moon, and among the Hashemites, who were all the stars of perfection and beauty, Abalfazl was like a moon. On this account, he was called the Moon of Hashemites.
Describing his face, we shall not suffice with his strong figure, tall stature, stretched eyebrow and moon-like face. His virtues too were a part of Abalfazl’s face. In one hand, his power of virtue, piety and promise was strong, and on the other hand, he was one of the great heroes of Islam. He had beauty of face and character both together. He possessed a tall stature, powerful muscles, thick arms, and pleasant face. He had all good moralities.
When he rode on the horse, his foot reached the earth for his tall stature. He had inherited prowess and chivalry from his father, and in view of dignity, generosity, self-respect, attraction in face and behavior, he was a heritage of all grandeur and attractions of Hashemites. The sign of prostration was evident on his forehead, and indicated his vigil, worship, and reverence before Allah. He was a pious fighter and a warrior familiar with the nightly invocation.
His heart was strong and steady, like a piece of iron. His mind was open and his faith was stable, and his belief was deep-rooted. Monotheism and loving God originated from the depth of his soul. His worship and godliness was so strong that as Sheikh Sadouq explains: The sign of prostration was seen on his forehead and face.
Belief, insight and faith of Abbas was so well-known and famous that Shiite Imams always talked about it, and praised him as a lofty and example man. Once Imam Sajad (a.s.) looked at the face of “Abidellah”, son of Hazrat Abalfazl (a.s.), and wept. Then, he reminded Prophet’s uncle (Hamzeh Sayedoshohada) in Ohud and his own uncle (Abbas Ebne Ali) in Karbala and said: No day was worse than the day of Ohud for Prophet, when his uncle, Hamzeh, was martyred.
There was no day worse than Ashura for Hossein Ebne Ali (a.s.), when he was surrounded by the thirty thousand host of enemy, and they thought that they will approach God by killing Prophet’s grandson, and finally they did not listen the advices of Sayedoshohada, and he was martyred.
Then he reminded the self-sacrifice and spiritual greatness of Abbas (a.s.) and said: God may have His mercy on my uncle, Abbas, who sacrificed himself for his brother, so that his two hands were cut. God too granted him two wings for his two cut hands just like Jafar Ebne Abitaleb, with which he can fly in the paradise besides angels. Abbas has such a great rank and position with God that all martyrs on the resurrection emulate his high rank.
The great self-sacrifice and dedication of Abalfazl has always inspired great sacrifices for faith and religion. Many of devotees have followed Jafar Tayyar and Abbas Ebne Ali for their sacrifices.
Deep insight, sure knowledge and firm fidelity to the truth, Imams and the path of God were among his characteristics. Imam Sadiq (a.s.) has admired him for these features:
Our uncle, Abbas had a deep insight and firm faith. He struggled in the way of God besides Aba Abdellah, and passed the trial successfully, and was martyred. I testify that you chose your path insightfully and were martyred and followed the pious. The deep and strong insight and sure knowledge applied for describing Imam, is an honorable proof for him.
These high characteristics have made the face of Abbas Ebne Ali bright and eternal. In addition to being an elegant hero and brave standard-bearer, his scientific virtues, piety and high rank of knowledge that was satiated from divine knowledge since childhood are also remarkable. The phrase, زقك العلمك زكقاَ, mentioned in some narration, refers to the reality that his scientific nourishment originates from his childhood.
He had a lot of knowledge about divine law, and was trustworthy for the narrators. He was very pious. Some of the great men have described him as:
Abbas knew divine law, was one of the religious experts among the offsprings of Imams. He was just, virtuous, trustworthy and pious.
According to the Late Qayeni: Abbas was one of the great men and excellent jurists of Prophet’s Household. Besides having the rank of intercession on the day of resurrection due to his proximity and position with God, this brave and martyred warlord will be the means of intercession of Hazrat Zahra.
On the strenuous day of resurrection, Prophet will send Hazrat Ali to Fatima to attend for intercession. Amiralmomenin says to Fatima: What of means of intercession do you have with yourself and what have you reserved for today? Fatima Zahra says: O Ali, the cut hands of my son, Abbas will suffice.
Serving all the life for Imamate and infallible Imams is a great honor for Abbas Ebne Ali. In particular, he had a notable support role for Aba Abdellah Hossein (a.s.). His relation with Imam Hossein (a.s.) was like that of Amiralmomenin (a.s.) with Prophet (s.a.). Note the comparison made by one of the writers about this father and son:
In many of social affairs, Hazrat Abbas displayed manliness and bravery just like his father. Abbas was the support of Hossein like his father who was that of Prophet (s.a.). In the battle fields, he demonstrated the same resistance, perseverance, bravery, support, faith, resolution, not escaping from the enemy, and not fearing of big number of enemy in Karbala, which his father had already done in the battles of Ohud, Badr, Khandaq, Kheybar, ….
Abbas together with his brother fed many of the hungry people in Mecca and Medina, just like Ali (a.s.) who carried on his shoulder the bag of bread and palm, and took it for the orphans and the poor. Anyone having a request from Prophet (s.a.), first referred to Ali (a.s.), and anyone having a request from Imam Hossein (a.s.), first referred to Abbas.
Just like his father, who slept in the Prophet’s bed and devoted himself for Prophet (s.a.), Abbas devoted himself on Ashura to bring water for the children. Like his father who put to the sword in Prophet’s presence, Abbas put to the sword in his brother’s presence until he was killed. As his father went alone to the enemy’s invitation, he went alone to the enemy’s host to receive respite.