In Today's Social Scenario, Grave Personalization and Family Disintegration there are more number of nuclear families growing day by day. The result is that children stay away from parents for long hours and are bluntly deprived from elderly warmth and care. But this is not so serious as far as our Isma’ili Taiyebi Alavi Bohra society is concerned. Our festivals are such that it always brings closer to our Elders and we sincerely respect their role in building our life with basic Islamic morals. Straight out of this is the first night of our New Year, i.e. the Pehli Raat of the first Month of our Hijri Year.
So in our first month of the year “MOHARRAM UL HARAAM” the “Thaal” that we have during the dinner of pehli raat and the breakfast of pehli tareekh is of great importance. It has lots of sweet dishes such as lachko, halwa, sodhannu, lanka dhaan, zardo etc. and many more sweets that are special to our Bohra cuisine. Out of these dishes, lachko carries a distinctive tradition with it. It is specifically made for the New Year occasion and is considered a main most sought after dish with every family member. All of the family members sit together around the thaal and enjoy various delicacies. This is a prophetic tradition which can bring family members together thus strengthening family and social relationships. It also makes the bond of parent-child strong.
There are four ashaab with high status among 12 people with every Nabi who support him in his propagation of Allaah’s command. Similarly out of 12 months allotted to us by Almighty Allaah, four months are of great importance. They are Zul Qa’adat il-Haraam, Zul Hijjat il-Haraam, Moharram ul-Haraam and Rajab ul-Murajjab. These four months are special in its hurmat, azamat, karaamat, waqaar and izzat.
Moharram ul-Haraam signifies the beginning of the New Year. People of different communities welcome the New Year with joy and enthusiasm. But in our Islamic Faith, Allaah Ta’aala wishes His believers that, they should combine their deeds and work with ‘ibaadat and du’aa.
Our Nabi ‘Isaa Roohullaah (as), on whom Injeel-Bible was revealed, when he started preaching his practices, the Rich and Kaafir People of Bani Israael started making fun of him and his teachings. Hawaariyoon, the devout followers of Nabi ‘Isaa became very disappointed. They requested Nabi ‘Isaa to pray before Allaah and ask to show some miracle so that it can become a sign of Truth against these Kaafir people and for us the cause of Pride and Celebration. He sincerely prayed before Allaah and it immediately got answered in form of a big platter “Thaal” coming down like a lightening from the Skies surrounded by heavy clouds. It was filled with eternal ne’maat of Jannat. Kaafir laughed at it and Hawaariyoon did shukr by taking barakaat from that thaal. This proved to be the day of Eid for the generations to come.
Hawariyoon started eating from the Thaal known to us as Maa’edah. It had different varieties such as five fish, five types vegetable, five rotis, paneer, olive, honey, ghee, kheema and many more. Faith of Maulaana ‘Isaa and his disciples became stronger and they felt very sorry for Bani Israael who were making fun of ‘Isaa Nabi by alleging him to be a Magician. Due to this ‘Isaa Nabi cursed them and by the Wrath of Allaah Ta’aala all their faces got changed into that of monkeys and pigs.
Similarly in Madinah, when Rasoolullaah (saws) came along with Maulaana 'Ali (as) in the house of Maulaatona Faatemah (as) for Ziyaafat when there was nothing to serve, she prayed for the favour and ne’mat from Allaah, she was bestowed with the thaal of jannati malidah. All our Panjatan-e-paak (as) had it by sitting together and thanked Allaah for this ne’mat-e-abadiyah-eternal bounties.
By the grace and blessings of ‘Isaa Nabi (as) and Rasoolullaah (saws) we are gifted by this ne’mat of thaal-Maa’edah. So we should welcome this month which also include the grief and sorrow of the zulm-o-sitam on our beloved Maulaana Imaam Husain (a.s) with full faith and belief. This thaal also includes fresh fruits and dry fruits. It should also have salt, sugar, fish, tarkari, rice and even those things which we have regularly in our diet. But one should consider that if you are having financial problem then the things which you cannot afford should not be purchased under compulsion. One can avoid anything if one can’t afford it. After having this or these nemats ?? ne’maat one should thank Allaah and pray that by the wasilah of Maulaana Imaam Husain (as) we get such ne’maat throughout the year…..Aameen