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Thirst Quencher | by Meanest Indian
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Thirst Quencher

A temporary drinking post at Chor Bazaar as part of Moharram observances.


Moharram/Muharram محرم marks the first month of the Arabic (lunar) calendar. Respect is paid to the Karbala martyrs of 680AD and their commitment to Truth – most significantly Imam Hussein, the grandson of Prophet Mohammed.


The martyrs were deprived of food and water by the local army of Yazid, and while some of the martyrs fell under these conditions, Hussein lasted on and was eventually brutally killed. As an observation of their suffering during this period, devout Muslims mark Muharram with fasts and other abstaining practices. Thus Muharram is derived from the word haram which means forbidden.


Neighbours gather for majalis to recount the history of events of the persecution. Water and sherbet are offered at temporary drinking posts for travellers, passers-by and the wider community – as a way of ceremonially countering the deprivation experienced by the martyrs. Communities construct vibrant tazia (minaretted replicas of Hussein's tomb at Karbala), usually made of bamboo, foil and coloured paper, which are paraded through streets on the tenth day of Muharram to be finally submerged in water. Sometimes a lone white horse also joins the procession to signify the unoccupied mount of Imam Hussein.

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Taken on December 30, 2008