“Muslim Rave Video” – an overcome Shiite cleric

February 25, 2006 at 9:10 pm (Amusement, From old blog, Islam, Religion, The Internet, Theology)

In this post by Ace of the Ace of Spades Headqarters, he says

More… Muslim clerics’ hysterics, set to rave music.

Personally, I don’t get this one, but so many people have sent to me that hey, it must be funny.

Thanks, this time around, to Brett.

He links to a certain video (preserved in the above quote) the purportedly represents a Muslim rave party. It is quite amusing.

The original video, with the original audio, can be found here on YouTube.

So, one may be asking oneself, what is this over-emotional display of sentiment?

From the setting – sombre colors, black cloth, Arabic writing thereupon, green cloth, pictures – and from the distinctive shape of the cleric’s turban, one may be able to tell that this is a Shiite event. From the very emotional participation of its people, this event evidently laments an atrocity perpetuated against Hussein or his party. We, however, cannot make out anything about who is being lamented, what event is being lamented, etc.

The obvious sign that this is a Shiite event is the chanting of “yaa Husseyn!” as men remove the distraught cleric. (“yaa” is the Arabic vocative, much like the English “O!”)

Shiites attend such events with great devotion, emotion, and fervency. The most popular speakers or presenters are those who are able to move the crowd to tears or even hysterics by their mastery of the word, moving the people to lament the atrocities against God’s pure ones. (Although it should be said that those who can remain emotional yet composed, unlike the cleric in the video, would be preferred.) There are many songs sung about this, and large lectures also, especially around the time of Ashoora.

Ashoora is often noticed because of the very emotional processions Shiites make on this day, carrying a mock coffin of Hussein. It is accompanied by wailing, chest-beating, and, in some areas, blood-letting (slashing oneself with knives, razors, whips with knives or razors, etc.). The blood-letting is less prevalent where Shiites are a very small minority (where it may be done in private, if at all).

Just as there are many Christians who go to church only on Christmas and Easter, and Jews who observe only the major holy-days, and Muslims who observe only fasting of ramaDaan and ‘eed al-fiTr and ‘eed al-aDHa, most Shiites will observe, at the very least, Ashoora by going to the mosque/imambargah/Husseyniyah to lament the martyrdom of Hussein and his party. In some ways, this is what makes Shiism what it is, what sets it apart. Sunnis don’t go to such great lengths, even if some acknowledge that Hussein’s martyrdom was tragic.

In other words, Shiites are distinctively emotional in some of their gatherings. To the point of hysterics even, as one can see in this video. It is a sign of piety amongst them.

inna naHnu-l-a’lamoon.



  1. adolfo velasquez said,

    Frankly, the face slapping is a little frightening to watch. Why does everything Islamic have to contain an element of violence?

  2. Muslihoon said,

    Well said, adolfo. (Thanks, by the way, for stopping by! I always like your comments on AoSHQ.) Along with whether Adam and Eve had navels, this is will forever be one of the universe’s mysteries.

  3. adolfo velasquez said,

    I enjoy yours as well. We can get a dozen people in a comment thread speculating about Islam, but you’re often the only one who actually seems to know what you are talking about. The rest of us just make stuff up as we go along.

  4. Iblis said,

    You know, it might be a matter of primitivism in the form of worship. Primitive tribal religions, blended religions like voodoo, and even some Protestant Christian sects are highly emotional. But you’ll see less of these outbreaks in religions that encourage rationality and place great store in the mind overcoming the body, certian sects of Catholicism, Lutheranism, Calvinism. Of course the extreme would be the Buddhists and stoics who practice self-denial to the point of self-destruction.
    With the exception of the Buddhists you can see the influence of the ancient Greek philosophers.

  5. Vie said,

    You know, I see something so completely, peculiarly Muslim like this, something which is on a basic level not really comprehensible to me as a Western Christian, and you know what I think to myself?

    I wish Muslihoon would explain this to me!

    Thanks as always.

  6. Muslihoon said,

    Thanks for that comment, Iblis! I never thought about it before, but it makes total sense.

    Nizari Ismaili Shiism is quite rational/intellectual (almost Neoplatonic), which shows an influence of Gnosticism or Greek philosophy. And Nizaris are probably the least emotional Muslims I know of. On the other hand, Twelver Shiism is probably the most emotional I have seen.

    Thank you, Vie!

  7. urbansocrates said,

    I think there are many false divisions; the Shiites may have more in common with Pentecostalist Christians than with many of their co-religionists. Go to a Southern Baptist African-American church and you’ll find the same level of emotion. Wouldn’t these sects have more in common than is supposed?

  8. Anonymous said,

    An hypothetical villain is made to fight and sell the weapons by traders of violence and death. They have media power which is full of lies and that help them in establishing capatilism and their satannical imperialism that is why islam today according to them is branded as full of violence and has an element of volence in all of their acts. Previously it was communism and now it is Islam bcoz Islam is against the accumulation of wealth and goverornance based on Islam is a social one and peace for all(No government is according to that ). For the ignorant people the word Islam means submit to the will of God and word Musalman(Muslims) has derived from Aman meaning by peace. So how come a Prophet who brought peace to this world in the barbaric age propagate violence in Islam? In the movie where Shia are weeping and beating themselves are observing mourning. I ask you if you have a humanity in you then what will you do when somebody in your family die or what will you do when your nascent child of 5-6 months get brutally killed. Shia weep bcoz all that happened in the family of Prophet soon after he left this world by the same people who became Muslim for power,money and fame without understanding the philosophy of Islam….the same is continued till now they are the same people who in the name of Islam are spreading terror across the globe and are also with the traders of violence but the memory of Husain and weeping is one way of protest against the terror,violence that is going on anywhere from killing of Husain to now. I hope by reading this instead of blaming Islam in ignorance one must go to detail to understand before coming to the conclusion.

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