Mawlid for Imam Shamil, Caucasia legendary leader

Mawlid-i Sharif was recited for the souls of "Caucasian Eagle" Sheikh Shamil and martyrs in Fatih Mosque in Istanbul.

Mawlid for Imam Shamil, Caucasia legendary leader
By Worldbulletin staff

On Sunday February10, 2008, Mawlid-i Sharif was recited and prayers offered for the souls of Imam Shamil, the legendary leader of Caucasia who had died on February 4, 1871 and martyrs, in Fatih Mosque after the noon prayer.

In the mawlid ceremony organised by Dagestanian Culture Association, Said Genç, president of association, gave a speech.

Genç stated that they have began reciting mawlid for Imam Shamil three years ago and added that "Imam Shamil do not need mawlid or prayers; however a nation lives with its history, we should be at peace with our past. We decided to do this in order to protect our past, commemorate Imam Shamil who is a common value for those who moved here from Caucasia, and come together "

Genç said there is a rise in attendance. The president also stated that in the next years they will cooperate with Caucasion Foundation, Shamil Foundation and other related foundations and make an organisation on a greater scale.

Who is Imam Shamil?

Imam Shamil (1797 – March 1871) was a political and religious leader of the Muslim tribes of the Northern Caucasus. He was a leader of anti-Russian resistance in the Caucasian War and was the third Imam of Dagestan and Chechnya.

Shamil established himself as a well-respected and educated man among other Muslims of the Caucasus.

Shamil was born at a time when the Russian Empire was expanding into the territories of the Ottoman Empire and Persia. Following the Russian invasion, many Caucasian nations united in resistance to harsh Tsarist rule in what became known as the Caucasian War. Some of the earlier leaders of Caucasian resistance were Sheikh Mansur, and Ghazi Mollah. Shamil was actually childhood friends with Mollah, and would become his disciple.

In 1834, Ghazi Mollah died at the battle of Ghimri, and Shamil took his place as the premier leader of the Caucasian resistance.

In 1839 (June-August), Shamil and his followers, numbering about 4000 men, women and children found themselves under siege in their mountain stronghold of Akhoulgo. His epic siege of the war lasted eighty days, resulting a defeat.

All the people were almost entirely slaughtered. Shamil and a small party of his closest followers, including some family miraculously managed to escape down the cliffs and through the Russian siege lines during the final days at Akhoulgo.

Following his escape he once again set about regaining his following and resisting the Russian occupation. Shamil was effective at uniting the many, frequently quarreling, Caucasian tribes to fight against the Russians. He made effective use of guerrilla warfare tactics and the resistance continued under his leadership until 1859. On August 25, 1859, Shamil and his family had to surrender to Russian forces and were jailed in the Dagestan.

Shamil continues to be revered in the Caucasus for his resistance to the Russians, and is held up as a role-model by those leading the current fight against Russian control of the region.

He died on February 4, 1871 in Medina during his pilgrimage to Mecca.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 28 Mayıs 2008, 13:25