IN LIFE AND DEATH
Names: Wahb & Haniyyah
Date & Place of Martyrdom: 10th Muharram 61 AH, Karbala
There are few times as joyful in life as the early days of marriage. It is a period filled with happiness and hopes for the future. To put aside all this for a greater, more noble cause requires an admirable presence of both mind and soul. When this willingness is united in people, it is an indication of their like-mindedness.
One such group of people in the epic history of Karbala is that of Wahb, his mother - Qamar, and wife - Haniyyah. Christian nomads by birth, they converted to Islam after meeting Imam al-Husayn (a) at Tha'labiyyah and joined him just days before Ashura.
On the day of the 10th of Muharram, Wahb was encouraged by his mother to seek out permission for battle. Once it was granted, he fought with passion until he was captured by the enemy and brought to 'Umar ibn Sa'd, with his hands severely wounded and almost cut from his body.
'Umar was forced to praise his firmness in battle before ordering his men to behead Wahb and throw his head towards the army of Imam al-Husayn (a). Wahb's mother took his severed head in her lap and cleaned away the blood from it, saying, "Praise be to Allah who bestowed honour upon me by your martyrdom." Then she flung the head back towards the enemy as if to say that whatever is given in the way of al-Husayn is not taken back.
Meanwhile Haniyyah, seeing the headless blood-soaked body of Wahb, ran to it. She held it in her arms and said, "Receive the glad tidings of Paradise." As she lamented over the body of her husband, Shimr Dhi Jawshan ordered his servant, Rustam, to kill her. Rustam did so by striking her on the head with a spear. Haniyyah was the first and only woman to be martyred on the Day of Ashura.
At their martyrdom, Wahb and Haniyyah had been Muslims for ten days and married for a mere 17 days. Theirs is not just a touching story, but a lesson that no relationship is greater than that of wilayah and when two people are united in their love for Allah (SWT) in this world, He places them together in honour in the aakhira as well.
Lamentations (Shaykh Muhammad Ishtihardi) quoting (Ma'ali al-Sibtayn)