First of all the day of 'Ashura' was the first ordered fast in Islam and it was ordered on the first 'Ashura' after our Prophet (pbuh) moved to Medina, as the hijra was in Rabi' al-Awwal according most scholars, this 'Ashura' should have been in the year 2 after hijra, the same year most scholars assume that fasting Ramadan was ordered. And by the order of fasting Ramadan, fasting 'Ashura' was void in means of an ordered fasting, while it was kept as an optional or compulsory or recommended fasting! What really changed about this fast was the recommendations: Sunni sources show that even the people of Mekka used to fast that day, as it was apparently the day they changed the kiswa of the Kaa'ba therefore fasting 'Ashura' was practiced by some of the muhajireen and by our Prophet (pbuh) himself even before he went to Medina and was informed by the Jew that this day coincide with the day Musa (pbuh) and banu Israel were saved from Pharao. Once he (pbuh) got this information he ordered any Muslim to fast or complete this day fasting as you may read in my further sources. This was at the beginning, while our Prophet (pbuh) used to follow some worships of the people of the book as he knew they might have some origin in the orders of Allah, once he got a revelation on any matter he changed this attitude. Therefore later he recommended fasting at least one day before or the day before and after 'Ashura' to make a difference to the fasts of the Jew.
Shia' View (quote from yahosain - my own translation):
قال الإمام الخوئي :
" .. وكيفما كان ، فالروايات الناهية غير نقيّة السـند برمّتها ، بل هي ضعيفة بأجمعها ،...
Imam al-Khoei said: In any case the narrations which prohibit or frown upon are -on the whole- not clean in their narrator chains (sanad), but they are even weak -all of them-, ...
. وأمّا الروايات المتضمّنة للأمر واستحباب الصوم في هذا اليوم فكثيرة ، مثل: صحيحة القدّاح : «صيام يوم عاشوراء كفّارة سنة» . وموثّقة مسعدة بن صدقة : «صوموا العاشوراء التاسع والعاشر فإنّه يكفّر ذنوب سنة»، ونحوها غيرها.
While on the other hand those narrations which include an order or recommendation for fasting this day are many, like the sahih narration of al-Qaddah: "Fasting 'Ashura' is an expiation of a year", and the attested ;as'addah ibn Sadaqah: "Fast Ashura' the ninthe and tenth, for it expiates the sins of a year."
Volume 2 from the book of fasts from his Sharh-el-Urwatul-Wuthqa (Commentary on The Steadfast Handle) page 316 الجزء الثاني من كتاب الصوم من «مستند العروة الوثقى» ص316 (source)
Some issues about 'Ashura' and a discussion of your posted hadiths
In your post you quoted a lot of ahadith instead of commenting all of them I'll try to explain a couple of misunderstandings about 'Ashura and the fasting on that day based on some (sunni) hadith commentaries like the one of an-Nawawi on sahih Muslim and the book zaad al-Ma'ad of ibn al-Qayyim al Jawziya. If we consider all the ahadith on the matter of 'Ashura we will have to deal with six possible problems or questions (quoted in the later reference):
- If our Prophet (pbuh) came to Medina in Rabi'i al-Awal (first) how could he find people (jews) fasting 'Ashura as the hadith of ibn 'Abbas seems to indicate?
- If Quraish used to fast the day of 'Ashura in Jahilya how could the Prophet (pbuh) only start fasting it when he saw the Jews in medina doing so as the hadith of 'Aisha indicates?
- How can ibn Masu'd in his hadith say that fasting 'Ashura has been left which clearly conflicts with the hadith of ibn 'Abbas from above?
- This hadith of ibn 'Abbas indicates that the statement of the Prophet (pbuh) was one year before his death so how can this contradiction -to the other hadith of the same sahabi- be explained?
- How can the 2nd hadith of ibn 'Abbas be explained if we put it aside a third narration of him?
- Assuming that fasting 'Ashura was ordered at the beginning of Islam how can this order to fast without having the intention to be explained? As there's a narration of Hafsa or 'Aisha saying fasting without the intention is void!
I'll try to answer briefly all these Issues and put more emphasis on the third as this is the topic of this Question!
- This hadith doesn't say that our Prophet (pbuh) came and found them fasting as he came to Medina in Rabi'i al-Awal so he found them fasting in Muharram as usual in the following year (so it was the first coinicidence of 'Ashura while after his arrival in Medina)!
- There's no contradiction here Quraish used to fast it and Muhammad (pbuh) used to fast it too, and as he found the people of Medina show so much respect for that day. He sent our somebody to order fasting it!
Before fasting Ramadan was ordered by Allah in the Quran, our Prophet (pbuh) ordered fasting 'Ashura, what really happens afterwards is that the fast was no more prescribed, but a compulsory act of worship, as stated in the hadiths of 'Aisha and ibn 'Omar. So what ibn Masu'd meant by "abandoned" was the "order" not the worship itself! As as long as he didn't have any revelation our Messenger (pbuh) used to do as the people of the book used to do, either because he considered this ordered by Allah or to win their affection or allure them to Islam...
So ibn Masu'd by not fasting that day only showed that however it is compulsory to fast this day it is still not prescribed, so on is following the sunnah of our Prophet (pbuh) if one fasts (and will be rewarded) and one is also following it if one doesn't fast it. As if we fasted it each year that would let other people consider it fard and may be the beginning of a bid'ah (and that's what many scholars were afraid from). Therefore you read in other ahadith that some sahaba fasted it if it fell on a day they used to fast (Monday/Thursday) etc.
Note that the hadith of ibn 'Omar even suggestes that fasting this day isn't even compulsory!
- There's no real contradiction here so maybe he (pbuh) fasted the 9th of Muharram or intended to do it a year later.
- if we consider the whole of narartions ibn 'Abbas narrated on the matter we will find that they don't really contradict, but show that it is recommended to fast the 9th of Muharram and the 10th or the 9th, 10th and 11th etc.
- Scholars have given three different explanations to this Issue:
First explanation: Scholars are different about whom narrated this hadith 'Aisha or Hafsa and even if it was one of them it is a marfo' hadith (the sahabi doesn't say that our Prophet did or ordered such and such). And it is clearly indicating that this was said after the order for fast for Ramadan, so it could be legal to fast without the intention in the first days of Islam when fasting 'Ashura' was ordered.
Second explanation: Abu Hanifa and his companions said the order of fasting 'Ashura' included to things: the prescription of fasting that day and the validity of fasting it with an intention made after the day has started. Then it was abrogated and the prescription has been replaced by a new prescription (fasting Ramadan) while the validity of fasting without an intention made (the night before) was not abrogated.
Third explanation: people got the news of that day being 'Ashura' only when the day started so those who didn't intend to fast and therefore couldn't know that our Messenger would declare this day as day prescribed to fast were asked to fast from this moment on!
(See also this fatwa)
So what exactly are the recommendations for fasting 'Ashura'
Note these recommendations are for those people who intended to fast 'Ashur'a, so if you decide not to fast it is ok, as I quoted as a conclusion from the hadith of ibn 'Omar!
The best -and most complete- way is: fasting 'Ashura' and a day before and a day after it. This is based on a narration from as-sunan al-Kubra of al-Bayhaqi and Musnad Ahmad etc.
The middle way is: fasting the 9th and 10th Moharram which is supported by many hadiths like in sahih Muslim and sunan ibn Majah. It is also confirmed by shi'a sources:
It was narrated from Abu ‘Abdullah (peace be upon him) from his father that ‘Ali (peace be upon him) said: Fast ‘Ashoora’ , on the ninth and the tenth, for it expiates the sins of a year.
عن ابى عبد الله عن ابيه ( عليهما السلام )) " ان عليا ( صلوات الله وسلامه عليه وآله ) قال : صوموا العاشورا التاسع والعاشر فانه يكفر ذنوب سنة "
Narrated by at-Toosi in Tahdheeb al-Ahkaam, 4/299; al-Istibsaar, 2/134; by al-Fayd al-Kaashaani in al-Waafi, 7/13; by al-Hurr al-‘Aamili in Wasaa’il ash-Shi‘ah, 7/337; by al-Buroojardi in Jaami‘ Ahaadeeth ash-Shi‘ah, 9/474, 475.
It was narrated that ‘Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) said: Fast the day of ‘Ashoora’, the ninth and the tenth to be on the safe side, because that is expiation for the past year. If one of you did not know about it before he ate, then let him fast for the rest of the day.
وعن علي عليه السلام قال: صوموا يوم عاشوراء التاسع والعاشر احتياطاً, فإنه كفارة السنة التي قبله, وإن لم يعلم به أحدكم حتى يأكل فليتم صومه
This report was narrated by the Shi‘i hadeeth scholar Husayn an-Noori at-Tabrusi in Mustadrak al-Wasaa’il, 1/594; and by al-Buroojardi in Ahaadeeth ash-Shi‘ah, 9/475.
And the lowest is: fasting the 10th of Muharram alone as it was ordered in the 1st year after Hijrah before the order for fasting Ramadan the 2nd year of Hijrah (as most scholars confirm).
Which is also confirmed by shi'a sources:
It was narrated from Abu’l-Hasan (peace be upon him) that he said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings of Allah be upon him and his family) fasted the day of ‘Ashoora’.
عن أبى الحسن ( عليه السلام ) قال : " صام رسول الله صلى الله عليه وآله يوم عاشوراء
Tahdheeb al-Ahkaam, 4/39; al-Istibsaar, 2/134; al-Waafi, 7/13; Wasaa’il ash-Shi‘ah, 7/337; also in Jaami‘ Ahaadeeth ash-Shi‘ah, 9/475
It was narrated from Ja‘far, from his father (peace be upon him) that he said: Fasting the day of ‘Ashoora’ is an expiation for a year.
عن ابي جعفر عن أبيه عليهما السلام قال: صيام يوم عاشورا كفارة سنة
Tahdheeb al-Ahkaam,4/300; al-Istibsaar, 2/134; Jaami‘ Ahaadeeth ash-Shi‘ah, 9/475; al-Hadaa’iq an-Naadirah, 13/371; al-Waafi by al-Kaashaani,7/13; al-Hurr al-‘Aamili in Wasaa’il ash-Shi‘ah, 7/337
It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: When you see the new moon of Muharram, then count (the days), and when the ninth day comes, then fast. I – that is, the narrator – said: Is that how Muhammad (peace be upon him and his family) used to fast? He said: Yes.
وعن ابن عباس رضي الله عنهما قال: إذا رأيت هلال المحرم فاعدد, فإذا أصبحت من تاسعه فأصبح صائماً قلت ( أي الراوي ):كذلك كان يصوم محمد صلى الله عليه وآله؟
This report was narrated by the Shi‘i Radiy ad-Deen Abu’l-Qaasim ‘Ali ibn Moosa ibn Ja‘far ibn Tawoos in his book Iqbaal al-A‘maal, p. 554; and by al-Hurr al-‘Aamili in Wasaa’il ash-Shi‘ah, 7/347; and by an-Noori at-Tabrusi in Mustadrak al-Wasaa’il, 1/594; and in Jaami‘ Ahaadeeth ash-Shi‘ah, 9/475.
Fasting the 9th alone is a misunderstanding of the hadiths and has no basis in the sunnah.
Here my shi'a sources aqaed, yahossain and al-safoor.org.