Before fourteen centuries, Imam Al-Hussayn (peace be upon him) made his resounding and historical call, "Hal min naserin yansarouni?" meaning: Is there anyone who will come to my assistance? Or, is there anyone to respond to my call for aid? It is said he repeated the call four times. Surely he was not expecting anyone to come to his aid. Those who wanted to help him had already laid down their lives for the cause, knowing very well that only death in martyrdom was his fate. And yet, Imam Al-Hussayn (peace be upon him) made sure that his call reverberated in all directions.
Of course that call was a call to conscientious people of every generation in every land throughout the times. It was a call even to us wherever we might be. It was a call for help; help against tyranny which in every age rears its ugly head to oppress justice, truth and morality. He was calling out to people of faith who, were still unborn. He had demonstrated that his objective had always been to create a spiritual awakening that can unite people from different nationalities, colours and tongues...
Today, centuries later, the remembrance of the tragedy of Karbala continues to draw ever-increasing crowds to the condolence gatherings and Hussayni processions in all countries of the world, with the participation of millions of lovers and followers of Ahl Al-Bayt (peace be upon them) along with Arab and Muslim communities, and involving also citizens of different religions and doctrines, carrying banners and back, red and green flags, shouting with one voice "Labbayka Ya Hussayn."
The mourning ceremonies and condolence marches have been the most potent force in organizing and rejuvenating the Shia communities the world over.
Mr. Hadi Al-Hassani; an Iraqi expatriate writer resident in Brussels says: "Ashura common gatherings are a prominent phenomenon that is based on tolerance, respect and cohesion with the other." Stressing that: "Most of the Hussayni processions in Europe have become a cultural event that a lot of Europeans are looking forward to watch and to understand its dimensions."