Ahlulbayt OccasionsNEWS

Turkish Alevis have their ways of holding Muharram rituals

Alevis currently make up 25 million people, which is about 30% of the total population of 85 million in Turkey.
Alevis hold a magnificent ceremony every year during Muharram.

Alevis have a considerable presence in Turkey today and are considered among Anatolian minorities. Alevi’s mourning for Sayyed al-Shohada, peace be upon him, is mostly held in the form of quiet crying.

Mourning is actually performed as a form of worship, and in the form of fasting and abstinence from food and refraining from doing certain things.

One is fasting on the first 10 days of Muharram, with many considering this practice as a great act of worship.
Some people also fast for 12 days, each day for one of the imams as the story of Imams’ lives is one of continuous martyrdoms.

Among some Alawite sects, the fasting of Muharram lasts up to 15 days; 12 days because of the 12 imams and three days in honor of Muslim bin Aqeel and his two sons.

In addition to abstinence, the people of this region sometimes give up many routines, such as using soap, shaving the beard, looking in the mirror, using perfume, laughing and having fun.

The majority of those fasting refrain from drinking water from the beginning of day 9 or from Ashura afternoon.

On the night of Ashura, they gather and sing elegies and laments in memory of Imam Hussain (peace be upon him).
Another activity of Alevis during Muharram is cooking pottage.

Ashura special food is boiled in large cauldrons called “Qazaan” and distributed among the devotees of Imam Hussain (peace be upon him).

The spiritual life of Alevis is significantly related to Ashura. That is, the issue of Ashura and Imam Hossein, peace be upon him, is more of an ontological issue than a ritual for the Alevis.

They distinguish their identity from others based on the rituals they perform for Ashura. This is why the rituals of the Muharram period have a central place in the Alevi identity.

Related Articles

Back to top button