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In the Name of God بسم الله

Subhanallah Alhamdullilah

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  1. Ma'tam is a way to express grief that is more cultural rather than religious, which is why different cultures have different ways of doing it. Scholars encourage it as long as it does not contradict the teachings of Islam (eg, cause people to hurt themselves, include lies about Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى), His messengers and Imams) since it enshrines the the remembrance of the Ahlul Bayt in society which is techincally a good thing. However, we cannot claim that in and of itself, ma'tam is an islamically sanctioned mustahab act (like Umrah, nafilah prayers etc) and so if a Muslim does engage in it, it does not necessarily mean they get rewards. This is similar to scholars wearing turbans for example, while it looks 'Muslim' it is not actually a part of Islam and they don't get extra points for wearing it, it's a social custom that isn't necessarily bad. The goal of the message of Imam Hussain was reformation to the true Islamic ideals of his grandfather and to stand against injustice. Any act which makes this a reality and does not go against Islamic teachings is inherently a halal and good act. Ma'tam can be good if it achieves these things, but it can also be close to haram if the poetry, actions etc. do not serve the aims of Imam Hussain ((عليه السلام)) which are the aims of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). To to sum up, ma'tam is a form of poetry and lamentation which is not a central part of Islam or necessarily divinely ordained - it is a way that people have made to express their feelings about Imam Hussain and can be halal or haram based on how it is done. I think it's best we do not have the mindset that this is a divinely ordained part of Islam lest we be introducing bid'ah like you say.
  2. Imam Almahdi's mum had the sign of pregnancy concealed to protect the child, it was a MIRACLE (Plus she's not even part of the ahlulbayt so a normal woman). Maryam conceiving without a man was also a MIRACLE. They are miracles because they are human beings. If they weren't human beings, it wouldn't be a miracle. This includes raising the dead, mi'raj etc. However, it is important to keep in mind that these miracles are NOT DONE BY THE HUMANS THEMSELVES. It is GOD who does these miracles. No human has the capacity to do super-human things. and God only performs miracles because there would be a good reason for it (eg. protecting the person, or proving Prophethood etc). Further, if the ahlulbayt were super-human, then how were they born to at least one normal human parent? The Imams had non-infallible mothers so were certainly fully human beings. Again, be careful!! Do not taint shiism and cause people to say that we claim the ahlulbayt are divine! Heed Imam Al-Ridha's advice!
  3. Please don't be the reason people turn away from shiism and Islam! Imam Al-Rida warned us against spreading falsehood about the Ahlul Bayt with exaggeration saying: "If the people hear exaggeration about us, they accuse the Shia followers of atheism and accuse us of claiming divinity." The Prophet and Imams are nothing but humans whom are divinely guided. They are not angels, divine or supernatural in any way. The point of having human guides is to show us that it is possible to be pious and to overcome our carnal desires to get close to Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). If they were anything other than humans, there would be little point to them being our guides. God could've easily sent down an angel to guide us if he wanted to but we would complain that the angel is built for obedience and we can't because we have other factors which make it hard to submit to the will of God. God sent down his human messengers to prove us wrong - that we can achieve spiritual perfection whilst being fully human! This is why they say that a human that submits to Allah's way (like the Ahlul Bayt) are better than angels since they achieved this station despite their carnal desires. Allah sends messengers from within each community so that they can be relatable. Allah says in Qur’an, that Allah would have send an angel if Angles had occupied this Earth, and since it is humans occupy it, we need to have a human Messenger. So, Allah sends His messengers as people, they Ahlul Bayt are humans (in every sense of the word!) just like us: Say, O [Muhammad], "I am only a man like you to whom it has been revealed that your God is but one God; so take a straight course to Him and seek His forgiveness." And woe to those who associate others with Allah" (Qur'an 41:6) Interesting how God adds on the end that woe to those who associate others with Allah, which includes us associating the Ahlul Bayt with Allah, claiming they are supernatural of super-human. He is warning us! So, it follows that the Ahlul Bayt, including Fatimah, were humans just like us and so would experience all the natural bodily processes like us, including menstruation, pregnancy, birth, janabah, etc. Further, the purity of the Ahlul Bayt is purity of the heart, mind and soul such that they worshipped Allah purely and were never tainted with the impurity of sin. Its so much more than physical "purity". So, it is imperative that our guides are human like us so that they can be role models for us on how to achieve spiritual purity and taqwa whilst having all the natural human aspects as well. It is an integral part of Allah's justice and plan.
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