Magazine
Latest Issue

Reflecting on my religion: how the ritual of Ashura reshaped my idea of suffering

Even after my faith has faded, the markings of Ashura are still etched on my mind

By Maan Al-Yasiri  

During Ashura, Shia men and women will gather in separate halls to cry and beat their chests in rhythm with a eulogy sung by a trained, and likely also crying, orator. Photo: Sayed Baqer AalKamel/NurPhoto)

When I was five years old and living in Damascus, I witnessed the massacre of a small rebellious army led by the Imam Hussein, a saint for Shia Muslims. My grandmother and I watched as men in bloodied white robes barely fight off the more numerous army of a corrupt and unjust ruler.

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk