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Prophets – Muhammad
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Quote fatima Replybullet Topic: the Life of Prophet Muhammad (saw)
    Posted: 29 August 2006 at 1:31pm

Bismillah irrahman irrahim

Assalamu alaikum

Seeing the interest and few questions, IC team has decided that it is best if we start a thread on the Life of Prophet Muhammad sallallahu alaihe wassalam. InshaAllah we will start from His birth to His departure to our beloved Lord. Please no comments in this thread, if any one wants to discuss some thing you can open a discussion thread. Thanks

wassalam



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Say: (O Muhammad) If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, MercifuL
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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 29 August 2006 at 1:34pm

Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum
(THE SEALED NECTAR)

Memoirs of the Noble Prophet [pbuh]

by Saifur Rahman al-Mubarakpuri

The Lineage and Family of Muhammad [pbuh]

With respect to the lineage of Prophet Muhammad [pbuh], there are three versions: The first was authenticated by biographers and genealogists and states that Muhammad’s genealogy has been traced to ‘Adnan. The second is subject to controversies and doubt, and traces his lineage beyond ‘Adnan back to Abraham. The third version, with some parts definitely incorrect, traces his lineage beyond Abraham back to Adam [AWS].

After this rapid review, now ample details are believed to be necessary.

The first part: Muhammad bin ‘Abdullah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib (who was called Shaiba) bin Hashim, (named ‘Amr) bin ‘Abd Munaf (called Al-Mugheera) bin Qusai (also called Zaid) bin Kilab bin Murra bin Ka‘b bin Lo’i bin Ghalib bin Fahr (who was called Quraish and whose tribe was called after him) bin Malik bin An-Nadr (so called Qais) bin Kinana bin Khuzaiman bin Mudrikah (who was called ‘Amir) bin Elias bin Mudar bin Nizar bin Ma‘ad bin ‘Adnan. [Ibn Hisham 1/1,2; Talqeeh Fuhoom Ahl Al-Athar, p. 5-6; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 2/11-14,52]

The second part: ‘Adnan bin Add bin Humaisi‘ bin Salaman bin Aws bin Buz bin Qamwal bin Obai bin ‘Awwam bin Nashid bin Haza bin Bildas bin Yadlaf bin Tabikh bin Jahim bin Nahish bin Makhi bin Aid bin ‘Abqar bin ‘Ubaid bin Ad-Da‘a bin Hamdan bin Sanbir bin Yathrabi bin Yahzin bin Yalhan bin Ar‘awi bin Aid bin Deshan bin Aisar bin Afnad bin Aiham bin Muksar bin Nahith bin Zarih bin Sami bin Mazzi bin ‘Awda bin Aram bin Qaidar bin Ishmael son of Abraham [AWS]. [Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 2/14-17]

The third part: beyond Abraham [AWS] , Ibn Tarih (Azar) bin Nahur bin Saru‘ bin Ra‘u bin Falikh bin Abir bin Shalikh bin Arfakhshad bin Sam bin Noah [AWS] , bin Lamik bin Mutwashlack bin Akhnukh [who was said to be Prophet Idris (Enoch) [AWS]] bin Yarid bin Mahla’il bin Qainan bin Anusha bin sh*th bin Adam [AWS]. [Ibn Hisham 1/2-4; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 2/18; Khulasat As-Siyar p.6]

 

The Prophetic Family

The family of Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] is called the Hashimite family after his grandfather Hashim bin ‘Abd Munaf. Let us now speak a little about Hashim and his descendants:

  1. Hashim: As we have previously mentioned, he was the one responsible for giving food and water to the pilgrims. This had been his charge when the sons of ‘Abd Munaf and those of ‘Abd Ad-Dar compromised on dividing the charges between them. Hashim was wealthy and honest. He was the first to offer the pilgrims sopped bread in broth. His first name was ‘Amr but he was called Hashim because he had been in the practice of crumbling bread (for the pilgrims). He was also the first man who started Quraish’s two journeys of summer and winter. It was reported that he went to Syria as a merchant. In Madinah, he married Salma — the daughter of ‘Amr from Bani ‘Adi bin An-Najjar. He spent some time with her in Madinah then he left for Syria again while she was pregnant. He died in Ghazza in Palestine in 497 A.D. Later, his wife gave birth to ‘Abdul-Muttalib and named him Shaiba for the white hair in his head,[Ibn Hisham 1/137; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/26,2/24] and brought him up in her father’s house in Madinah. None of his family in Makkah learned of his birth. Hashim had four sons; Asad, Abu Saifi, Nadla and ‘Abdul-Muttalib, and five daughters Ash-Shifa, Khalida, Da‘ifa, Ruqyah and Jannah.[Ibn Hisham 1/107]
  2. ‘Abdul-Muttalib: We have already known that after the death of Hashim, the charge of pilgrims’ food and water went to his brother Al-Muttalib bin ‘Abd Munaf (who was honest, generous and trustworthy). When ‘Abdul-Muttalib reached the age of boyhood, his uncle Al-Muttalib heard of him and went to Madinah to fetch him. When he saw him, tears filled his eyes and rolled down his cheeks, he embraced him and took him on his camel. The boy, however abstained from going with him to Makkah until he took his mother’s consent. Al-Muttalib asked her to send the boy with him to Makkah, but she refused. He managed to convince her saying: "Your son is going to Makkah to restore his father’s authority, and to live in the vicinity of the Sacred House." There in Makkah, people wondered at seeing Abdul-Muttalib, and they considered him the slave of Muttalib. Al-Muttalib said: "He is my nephew, the son of my brother Hashim." The boy was brought up in Al-Muttalib’s house, but later on Al-Muttalib died in Bardman in Yemen so ‘Abdul-Muttalib took over and managed to maintain his people’s prestige and outdo his grandfathers in his honourable behaviour which gained him Makkah’s deep love and high esteem. [Ibn Hisham 1/137,138]

    When Al-Muttalib died, Nawfal usurped ‘Abdul-Muttalib of his charges, so the latter asked for help from Quraish but they abstained from extending any sort of support to either of them. Consequently, he wrote to his uncles of Bani An-Najjar (his mother’s brothers) to come to his aid. His uncle, Abu Sa‘d bin ‘Adi (his mother’s brother) marched to Makkah at the head of eighty horsemen and camped in Abtah in Makkah. ‘Abdul-Muttalib received the men and invited them to go to his house but Abu Sa‘d said: "Not before I meet Nawfal." He found Nawfal sitting with some old men of Quraish in the shade of Al-Ka‘bah. Abu Sa‘d drew his sword and said: "I swear by Allah that if you don’t restore to my nephew what you have taken, I will kill you with this sword." Nawfal was thus forced to give up what he had usurped, and the notables of Quraish were made to witness to his words. Abu Sa‘d then went to ‘Abdul-Muttalib’s house where he stayed for three nights, made ‘Umra and left back for Madinah. Later on, Nawfal entered into alliance with Bani ‘Abd Shams bin ‘Abd Munaf against Bani Hashim. When Khuza‘a, a tribe, saw Bani An-Najjar’s support to ‘Abdul-Muttalib they said: "He is our son as he is yours. We have more reasons to support him than you." ‘Abd Munaf’s mother was one of them. They went into An-Nadwa House and entered into alliance with Bani Hashim against Bani ‘Abd Shams and Nawfal. It was an alliance that was later to constitute the main reason for the conquest of Makkah. ‘Abdul-Muttalib witnessed two important events in his lifetime, namely digging Zamzam well and the Elephant raid. [Mukhtasar Seerat Ar-Rasool, p.41,42; Ibn Hisham 1/142-147]

    In brief, ‘Abdul-Muttalib received an order in his dream to dig Zamzam well in a particular place. He did that and found the things that Jurhum men had buried therein when they were forced to evacuate Makkah. He found the swords, armours and the two deer of gold. The gate of Al-Ka‘bah was stamped from the gold swords and the two deer and then the tradition of providing Zamzam water to pilgrims was established.

    When the well of Zamzam gushed water forth, Quraish made a claim to partnership in the enterprise, but ‘Abdul-Muttalib refused their demands on grounds that Allah had singled only him out for this honourable job. To settle the dispute, they agreed to consult Bani Sa‘d’s diviner. On their way, Allah showed them His Signs that confirmed ‘Abdul-Muttalib’s prerogative as regards the sacred spring. Only then did ‘Abdul-Muttalib make a solemn vow to sacrifice one of his adult children to Al-Ka‘bah if he had ten.

    The second event was that of Abraha As-Sabah Al-Habashi, the Abyssinian (Ethiopian) viceroy in Yemen. He had seen that the Arabs made their pilgrimage to Al-Ka‘bah so he built a large church in San‘a in order to attract the Arab pilgrims to it to the exclusion of Makkah. A man from Kinana tribe understood this move, therefore he entered the church stealthily at night and besmeared its front wall with excrement. When Abraha knew of that, he got very angry and led a great army – of sixty thousand warriors – to demolish Al-Ka‘bah. He chose the biggest elephant for himself. His army included nine or thirteen elephants. He continued marching until he reached a place called Al-Magmas. There, he mobilized his army, prepared his elephants and got ready to enter Makkah. When he reached Muhassar Valley, between Muzdalifah and Mina, the elephant knelt down and refused to go forward. Whenever they directed it northwards, southwards or eastwards, the elephant moved quickly but when directed westwards towards Al-Ka‘bah, it knelt down. Meanwhile, Allah loosed upon them birds in flights, hurling against them stones of baked clay and made them like green blades devoured. These birds were very much like swallows and sparrows, each carrying three stones; one in its peak and two in its claws. The stones hit Abraha’s men and cut their limbs and killed them. A large number of Abraha’s soldiers were killed in this way and the others fled at random and died everywhere. Abraha himself had an infection that had his fingertips amputated. When he reached San‘a he was in a miserable state and died soon after.

    The Quraish*tes on their part had fled for their lives to the hillocks and mountain tops. When the enemy had been thus routed, they returned home safely. [Ibn Hisham 1/43-56; Tafheemul-Qur'an 6/462-469]

    The Event of the Elephant took place in the month of Al-Muharram, fifty or fifty five days before the birth of Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] which corresponded to late February or early March 571 A.D. It was a gift from Allah to His Prophet and his family. It could actually be regarded as a Divine auspicious precursor of the light to come and accompany the advent of the Prophet and his family. By contrast, Jerusalem had suffered under the yoke of the atrocities of Allah's enemies. Here we can recall Bukhtanassar in B.C. 587 and the Romans in 70 A.D. Al-Ka‘bah, by Divine Grace, never came under the hold of the Christians – the Muslims of that time – although Makkah was populated by polytheists.

    News of the Elephant Event reached the most distant corners of the then civilized world. Abyssinia (Ethiopia) maintained strong ties with the Romans, while the Persians on the other hand, were on the vigil with respect to any strategic changes that were looming on the socio-political horizon, and soon came to occupy Yemen. Incidentally, the Roman and Persian Empires stood for the powerful civilized world at that time. The Elephant Raid Event riveted the world’s attention to the sacredness of Allah's House, and showed that this House had been chosen by Allah for its holiness. It followed then if any of its people claimed Prophethood, it would be congruous with the outcome of the Elephant Event, and would provide a justifiable explanation for the ulterior Divine Wisdom that lay behind backing polytheists against Christians in a manner that transcended the cause-and-effect formula.

    ‘Abdul-Muttalib had ten sons, Al-Harith, Az-Zubair, Abu Talib, ‘Abdullah, Hamzah, Abu Lahab, Ghidaq, Maqwam, Safar and Al-‘Abbas. He also had six daughters, who were Umm Al-Hakim – the only white one, Barrah, ‘Atikah, Safiya, Arwa and Omaima. [Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 2/56,66; Talqeeh Fuhoom Ahl Al-Athar, p8,9]

  3. ‘Abdullah: The father of Prophet Muhammad [pbuh]. His mother was Fatimah, daughter of ‘Amr bin ‘A’idh bin ‘Imran bin Makhzum bin Yaqdha bin Murra. ‘Abdullah was the smartest of ‘Abdul-Muttalib’s sons, the chastest and the most loved. He was also the son whom the divination arrows pointed at to be slaughtered as a sacrifice to Al-Ka‘bah. When ‘Abdul-Muttalib had ten sons and they reached maturity, he divulged to them his secret vow in which they silently and obediently acquiesced. Their names were written on divination arrows and given to the guardian of their most beloved goddess, Hubal. The arrows were shuffled and drawn. An arrow showed that it was ‘Abdullah to be sacrificed. ‘Abdul-Muttalib then took the boy to Al-Ka‘bah with a razor to slaughter the boy. Quraish, his uncles from Makhzum tribe and his brother Abu Talib, however, tried to dissuade him from consummating his purpose. He then sought their advice as regards his vow. They suggested that he summon a she-diviner to judge whereabout. She ordered that the divination arrows should be drawn with respect to ‘Abdullah as well as ten camels. She added that drawing the lots should be repeated with ten more camels every time the arrow showed ‘Abdullah. The operation was thus repeated until the number of the camels amounted to one hundred. At this point the arrow showed the camels, consequently they were all slaughtered (to the satisfaction of Hubal) instead of his son. The slaughtered camels were left for anyone to eat from, human or animal.

    This incident produced a change in the amount of blood-money usually accepted in Arabia. It had been ten camels, but after this event it was increased to a hundred. Islam, later on, approved of this. Another thing closely relevant to the above issue goes to the effect that the Prophet [pbuh] once said:

    "I am the offspring of the slaughtered two," meaning Ishmael and ‘Abdullah. [Ibn Hisham 1/151-155; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 2/89,90]

    ‘Abdul-Muttalib chose Amina, daughter of Wahab bin ‘Abd Munaf bin Zahra bin Kilab, as a wife for his son, ‘Abdullah. She thus, in the light of this ancestral lineage, stood eminent in respect of nobility of position and descent. Her father was the chief of Bani Zahra to whom great honour was attributed. They were married in Makkah, and soon after ‘Abdullah was sent by his father to buy dates in Madinah where he died. In another version, ‘Abdullah went to Syria on a trade journey and died in Madinah on his way back. He was buried in the house of An-Nabigha Al-Ju‘di. He was twenty-five years old when he died. Most historians state that his death was two months before the birth of Muhammad [pbuh] . Some others said that his death was two months after the Prophet’s birth. When Amina was informed of her husband’s death, she celebrated his memory in a most heart-touching elegy. [Ibn Hisham 1/156-158; Fiqh As-Seerah p.45]

    ‘Abdullah left very little wealth —five camels, a small number of goats, a she-servant, called Barakah – Umm Aiman – who would later serve as the Prophet’s nursemaid. [Muslim 2/96; Talqeeh Fahoom Ahl-Athar p.4; Mukhtasar Seerat Ar-Rasool p. 12]



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Say: (O Muhammad) If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, MercifuL
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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 04 September 2006 at 4:54am

Muhammad’s Birth and Forty Years prior to Prophethood

His Birth

Muhammad [pbuh], the Master of Prophets, was born in Bani Hashim lane in Makkah on Monday morning, the ninth of Rabi‘ Al-Awwal, the same year of the Elephant Event, and forty years of the reign of Kisra (Khosru Nushirwan), i.e. the twentieth or twenty-second of April, 571 A.D., according to the scholar Muhammad Sulaiman Al-Mansourpuri, and the astrologer Mahm?sha. [Muhadarat Tareekh Al-Umam Al-Islamiyah 1/62; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/38,39]

Ibn Sa‘d reported that Muhammad’s mother said: "When he was born, there was a light that issued out of my pudendum and lit the palaces of Syria." Ahmad reported on the authority of ‘Arbadh bin Sariya something similar to this. [Mukhtasar Seerat-ur-Rasool, p.12; Tabaqat Ibn Sa'd 1/63]

It was but controversially reported that significant precursors accompanied his birth: fourteen galleries of Kisra’s palace cracked and rolled down, the Magians’ sacred fire died down and some churches on Lake Sawa sank down and collapsed. [Reported by Al-Baihaqi, but Al-Ghazali didn't approve it - see Fiqh-us-Seerah p.46]

His mother immediately sent someone to inform his grandfather ‘Abdul-Muttalib of the happy event. Happily he came to her, carried him to Al-Ka‘bah, prayed to Allah and thanked Him. ‘Abdul-Muttalib called the baby Muhammad, a name not then common among the Arabs. He circumcised him on his seventh day as was the custom of the Arabs. [Ibn Hisham 1/159,160; Zad Al-Ma'ad 1/18; Muhadarat Tareekh Al-Umam Al-Islamiyah 1/62]

The first woman who suckled him after his mother was Thuyebah, the concubine of Abu Lahab, with her son, Masrouh. She had suckled Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib before and later Abu Salamah bin ‘Abd Al-Asad Al-Makhzumi. [Talqeeh Furoom Ahl-al-Athar p.4; Mukhtasar Seerat-ur-Rasool p.13]

 

Babyhood

It was the general custom of the Arabs living in towns to send their children away to bedouin wet nurses so that they might grow up in the free and healthy surroundings of the desert whereby they would develop a robust frame and acquire the pure speech and manners of the bedouins, who were noted both for chastity of their language and for being free from those vices which usually develop in sedentary societies.

The Prophet [pbuh] was later entrusted to Haleemah bint Abi Dhuaib from Bani Sa‘d bin Bakr. Her husband was Al-Harith bin ‘Abdul ‘Uzza called Abi Kabshah, from the same tribe.

Muhammad [pbuh] had several foster brothers and sisters, ‘Abdullah bin Al-Harith, Aneesah bint Al-Harith, Hudhafah or Judhamah bint Al-Harith (known as Ash-Shayma’), and she used to nurse the Prophet [pbuh] and Abu Sufyan bin Al-Harith bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib, the Prophet’s cousin. Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib, the Prophet’s uncle, was suckled by the same two wet nurses, Thuyeba and Haleemah As-Sa‘diyah, who suckled the Prophet [pbuh]. [Za'd Al-Ma'ad 1/19]

Traditions delightfully relate how Haleemah and the whole of her household were favoured by successive strokes of good fortune while the baby Muhammad [pbuh] lived under her care. Ibn Ishaq states that Haleemah narrated that she along with her husband and a suckling babe, set out from her village in the company of some women of her clan in quest of children to suckle. She said:

It was a year of drought and famine and we had nothing to eat. I rode on a brown she-ass. We also had with us an old she-camel. By Allah we could not get even a drop of milk. We could not have a wink of sleep during the night for the child kept crying on account of hunger. There was not enough milk in my breast and even the she-camel had nothing to feed him. We used to constantly pray for rain and immediate relief. At length we reached Makkah looking for children to suckle. Not even a single woman amongst us accepted the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] offered to her. As soon as they were told that he was an orphan, they refused him. We had fixed our eyes on the reward that we would get from the child’s father. An orphan! What are his grandfather and mother likely to do? So we spurned him because of that. Every woman who came with me got a suckling and when we were about to depart, I said to my husband: "By Allah I do not like to go back along with the other women without any baby. I should go to that orphan and I must take him." He said, "There is no harm in doing so and perhaps Allah might bless us through him." So I went and took him because there was simply no other alternative left for me but to take him. When I lifted him in my arms and returned to my place I put him on my breast and to my great surprise, I found enough milk in it. He drank to his heart’s content, and so did his foster brother and then both of them went to sleep although my baby had not been able to sleep the previous night. My husband then went to the she-camel to milk it and, to his astonishment, he found plenty of milk in it. He milked it and we drank to our fill, and enjoyed a sound sleep during the night. The next morning, my husband said: "By Allah Haleemah, you must understand that you have been able to get a blessed child." And I replied: "By the grace of Allah I hope so."

The tradition is explicit on the point that Haleemah’s return journey and her subsequent life, as long as the Prophet [pbuh] stayed with her, was encircled with a halo of good fortune. The donkey that she rode when she came to Makkah was lean and almost foundered; it recovered speed much to the amazement of Haleemah’s fellow travellers. By the time they reached the encampments in the country of the clan of Sa‘d, they found the scales of fortune turned in their favour. The barren land sprouted forth luxuriant grass and beasts came back to them satisfied and full of milk. Muhammad [pbuh] stayed with Haleemah for two years until he was weaned as Haleemah said:

We then took him back to his mother requesting her earnestly to have him stay with us and benefit by the good fortune and blessings he had brought us. We persisted in our request which we substantiated by our anxiety over the child catching a certain infection peculiar to Makkah.[Ibn Hisham 1/162-164] At last, we were granted our wish and the Prophet [pbuh] stayed with us until he was four or five years of age.

When, as related by Anas in Sahih Muslim, Gabriel came down and ripped his chest open and took out the heart. He then extracted a blood-clot out of it and said: "That was the part of Satan in thee." And then he washed it with the water of Zamzam in a gold basin. After that the heart was joined together and restored to its place. The boys and playmates came running to his mother, i.e. his nurse, and said: "Verily, Muhammad [pbuh] has been murdered." They all rushed towards him and found him all right only his face was white. [Muslim 1/92]

 

Back to His Passionate Mother

After this event, Haleemah was worried about the boy and returned him to his mother with whom he stayed until he was six. [Talqeeh Furoom Ahl-al-Athar p.7; Ibn Hisham 1/168]

In respect of the memory of her late husband, Amina decided to visit his grave in Yathrib (Madinah). She set out to cover a journey of 500 kilometers with her orphan boy, woman servant Umm Ayman and her father-in-law ‘Abdul-Muttalib. She spent a month there and then took her way back to Makkah. On the way, she had a severe illness and died in Abwa on the road between Makkah and Madinah. [Ibn Hisham 1/168; Talqeeh Fuhroom Ahl-al-Athar p.7]

 

To His Compassionate Grandfather

‘Abdul-Muttalib brought the boy to Makkah. He had warm passions towards the boy, his orphan grandson, whose recent disaster (his mother’s death) added more to the pains of the past. ‘Abdul-Muttalib was more passionate with his grandson than with his own children. He never left the boy a prey to loneliness, but always preferred him to his own kids. Ibn Hisham reported: A mattress was put in the shade of Al-Ka‘bah for ‘Abdul-Muttalib. His children used to sit around that mattress in honour to their father, but Muhammad [pbuh] used to sit on it. His uncles would take him back, but if ‘Abdul-Muttalib was present, he would say: "Leave my grandson. I swear by Allah that this boy will hold a significant position." He used to seat the boy on his mattress, pat his back and was always pleased with what the boy did. [Ibn Hisham 1/168]

When Muhammad [pbuh] was eight years, two months and ten days old, his grandfather ‘Abdul-Muttalib passed away in Makkah. The charge of the Prophet [pbuh] was now passed on to his uncle Abu Talib, who was the brother of the Prophet’s father.

Abu Talib took the charge of his nephew in the best way. He put him with his children and preferred him to them. He singled the boy out with great respect and high esteem. Abu Talib remained for forty years cherishing his nephew and extending all possible protection and support to him. His relations with the others were determined in the light of the treatment they showed to the Prophet [pbuh].

Ibn ‘Asakir reported on the authority of Jalhamah bin ‘Arfuta who said: "I came to Makkah when it was a rainless year, so Quraish said ‘O Abu Talib, the valley has become leafless and the children hungry, let us go and pray for rain-fall.’ Abu Talib went to Al-Ka‘bah with a young boy who was as beautiful as the sun, and a black cloud was over his head. Abu Talib and the boy stood by the wall of Al-Ka‘bah and prayed for rain. Immediately clouds from all directions gathered and rain fell heavily and caused the flow of springs and growth of plants in the town and the country. [Mukhtasar Seerat-ur-Rasool p.15,16]

 

Bahira, the Monk

When the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] was twelve years old, he went with his uncle Abu Talib on a business journey to Syria. When they reached Busra (which was a part of Syria, in the vicinity of Howran under the Roman domain) they met a monk called Bahira (his real name was Georges), who showed great kindness, and entertained them lavishly. He had never been in the habit of receiving or entertaining them before. He readily enough recognized the Prophet [pbuh] and said while taking his hand: "This is the master of all humans. Allah will send him with a Message which will be a mercy to all beings." Abu Talib asked: "How do you know that?" He replied: "When you appeared from the direction of ‘Aqabah, all stones and trees prostrated themselves, which they never do except for a Prophet. I can recognize him also by the seal of Prophethood which is below his shoulder, like an apple. We have got to learn this from our books." He also asked Abu Talib to send the boy back to Makkah and not to take him to Syria for fear of the Jews. Abu Talib obeyed and sent him back to Makkah with some of his men servants. [Ibn Hisham 1/180-183; Za'd Al-Ma'ad 1/17]

 

The ‘Sacrilegious’ Wars

Muhammad [pbuh] was hardly fifteen when the ‘sacrilegious’ wars — which continued with varying fortunes and considerable loss of human life for a number of years — broke out between Quraish and Banu Kinana on the one side and Qais ‘Ailan tribe on the other. It was thus called because the inviolables were made violable, the prohibited months being included. Harb bin Omaiyah, on account of his outstanding position and honourable descent, used to be the leader of Quraish and their allies. In one of those battles, the Prophet [pbuh] attended on his uncles but did not raise arms against their opponents. His efforts were confined to picking up the arrows of the enemy as they fell, and handing them over to his uncles. [Ibn Hisham 1/184-187; Qalb Jazeerat Al-Arab p.260]

 

Al-Fudoul Confederacy

At the conclusion of these wars, when peace was restored, people felt the need for forming confederacy at Makkah for suppressing violence and injustice, and vindicating the rights of the weak and the destitute. Representatives of Banu Hashim, Banu Al-Muttalib, Asad bin ‘Abd Al-‘Uzza, Zahrah bin Kilab and Taim bin Murra were called to meet in the habitation of an honourable elderly man called ‘Abdullah bin Jada‘an At-Taimy to enter into a confederacy that would provide for the above-mentioned items. The Messenger of Allah[pbuh] shortly after he had been honoured with the ministry of Prophethood, witnessed this league and commented on it, with very positive words: "I witnessed a confederacy in the house of ‘Abdullah bin Jada‘an. It was more appealing to me than herds of cattle. Even now in the period of Islam I would respond positively to attending such a meeting if I were invited." [Ibn Hisham 1/113,135]

In fact, the spirit of this confederacy and the course of deliberations therein marked a complete departure from the pre-Islamic tribal-pride. The story that led to its convention says that a man from Zubaid clan came as a merchant to Makkah where he sold some commodities to Al-‘As bin Wail As-Sahmy. The latter by hook or by crook tried to evade paying for the goods. The salesman sought help from the different clans in Quraish but they paid no heed to his earnest pleas. He then resorted to a mountain top and began, at the top of his voice, to recite verses of complaint giving account of the injustices he sustained. Az-Zubair bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib heard of him and made inquiries into the matter. Consequently, the parties to the aforesaid confederacy convened their meeting and managed to force Az-Zubaidy’s money out of Al-‘As bin Wa’il. [Mukhtasar Seerat-ur-Rasool, p.30,31]

 

Muhammad’s Early Job

Muhammad [pbuh], had no particular job at his early youth, but it was reported that he worked as a shepherd for Bani Sa‘d and in Makkah. At the age of 25, he went to Syria as a merchant for Khadijah [R]. Ibn Ishaq reported that Khadijah, daughter of Khwailid was a business-woman of great honour and fortune. She used to employ men to do her business for a certain percentage of the profits. Quraish people were mostly tradespeople, so when Khadijah was informed of Muhammad [pbuh], his truthful words, great honesty and kind manners, she sent for him. She offered him money to go to Syria and do her business, and she would give him a higher rate than the others. She would also send her hireling, Maisarah, with him. He agreed and went with her servant to Syria for trade. [Ibn Hisham 1/187,188]

 

His Marriage to Khadijah

When he returned to Makkah, Khadijah noticed, in her money, more profits and blessings than she used to. Her hireling also told her of Muhammad’s good manners, honesty, deep thought, sincerity and faith. She realized that she homed at her target. Many prominent men had asked for her hand in marriage but she always spurned their advances. She disclosed her wish to her friend Nafisa, daughter of Maniya, who immediately went to Muhammad [pbuh] and broke the good news to him. He agreed and requested his uncles to go to Khadijah’s uncle and talk on this issue. Subsequently, they were married. The marriage contract was witnessed by Bani Hashim and the heads of Mudar. This took place after the Prophet’s return from Syria. He gave her twenty camels as dowry. She was, then, forty years old and was considered as the best woman of her folk in lineage, fortune and wisdom. She was the first woman whom the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] married. He did not get married to any other until she had died. [Ibn Hisham 1/189; Fiqh As-Seerah p.59; Talqeeh Fahoom Ahl-al-Athar p.7]

Khadijah bore all his children, except Ibrahim: Al-Qasim, Zainab, Ruqaiyah, Umm Kulthum, Fatimah and ‘Abdullah who was called Taiyib and Tahir. All his sons died in their childhood and all the daughters except Fatimah died during his lifetime. Fatimah died six months after his death. All his daughters witnessed Islam, embraced it, and emigrated to Madinah. [Ibn Hisham 1/190,191; Fath Al-Bari 7/507]

 

Rebuilding Al-Ka‘bah and the Arbitration Issue

When the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] was thirty five, Quraish started rebuilding Al-Ka‘bah. That was because it was a low building of white stones no more than 6.30 metres high, from the days of Ishmael. It was also roofless and that gave the thieves easy access to its treasures inside. It was also exposed to the wearing factors of nature — because it was built a long time ago — that weakened and cracked its walls. Five years before Prophethood, there was a great flood in Makkah that swept towards Al-Ka‘bah and almost demolished it. Quraish was obliged to rebuild it to safeguard its holiness and position. The chiefs of Quraish decided to use only licit money in rebuilding Al-Ka‘bah, so all money that derived from harlotry, usury or unjust practices was excluded. They were, at first, too awed to knock down the wall, but Al-Waleed bin Al-Mugheerah Al-Mukhzumi started the work. Seeing that no harm had happened to him, the others participated in demolishing the walls until they reached the basis laid by Abraham. When they started rebuilding its walls, they divided the work among the tribes. Each tribe was responsible for rebuilding a part of it. The tribes collected stones and started work. The man who laid the stones was a Roman mason called Baqum. The work went on in harmony till the time came to put the sacred Black Stone in its proper place. Then strife broke out among the chiefs, and lasted for four or five days, each contesting for the honour of placing the stone in its position. Daggers were on the point of being drawn and great bloodshed seemed imminent. Luckily, the oldest among the chiefs Abu Omaiyah bin Mugheerah Al-Makhzumi made a proposal which was accepted by all. He said: "Let him, who enters the Sanctuary first of all, decide on the point." It was then Allah's Will that the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] should be the first to enter the Mosque. On seeing him, all the people on the scene, cried with one voice: "Al-Ameen (the trustworthy) has come. We are content to abide by his decision." Calm and self-possessed, Muhammad [pbuh] received the commission and at once resolved upon an expedient which was to conciliate them all. He asked for a mantle which he spread on the ground and placed the stone in its centre. He then asked the representatives of the different clans among them, to lift the stone all together. When it had reached the proper place, Muhammad [pbuh] laid it in the proper position with his own hands. This is how a very tense situation was eased and a grave danger averted by the wisdom of the Prophet [pbuh].

Quraish ran short of the licit money, they collected, so they eliminated six yards area on the northern side of Al-Ka‘bah which is called Al-Hijr or Al-Hateem. They raised its door two metres from the level ground to let in only the people whom they desired. When the structure was fifteen yards high they erected the roof which rested on six columns.

When the building of Al-Ka‘bah had finished, it assumed a square form fifteen metres high. The side with the Black Stone and the one opposite were ten metres long each. The Black Stone was 1.50 metre from the circumambulation level ground. The two other sides were twelve metres long each. The door was two metres high from the level ground. A building structure of 0.25 metre high and 0.30 metre wide on the average surrounded Al-Ka‘bah. It was called Ash-Shadherwan, originally an integral part of the Sacred Sanctuary, but Quraish left it out. [Bukhari 1/215; Fiqh As-Seerah p.62-63; Ibn Hisham 2/192-197]

 

A Rapid Review of Muhammad’s Biography before Commissioning of the Prophethood

Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] was, in his youth, a combination of the best social attributes. He was an exemplary man of weighty mind and faultless insight. He was favoured with intelligence, originality of thought and accurate choice of the means leading to accurate goals. His long silence helped favourably in his habit of meditation and deep investigation into the truth. His vivid mind and pure nature were helpfully instrumental in assimilating and comprehending ways of life and people, individual and community-wise. He shunned superstitious practices but took an active part in constructive and useful dealings, otherwise, he would have recourse to his self-consecrated solitude. He kept himself aloof from drinking wine, eating meat slaughtered on stone altars, or attending idolatrous festivals. He held the idols in extreme aversion and most abhorrence. He could never tolerate someone swearing by Al-Lat and Al-‘Uzza. Allah's providence, no doubts, detached him from all abominable or evil practices. Even when he tried to obey his instinct to enjoy some life pleasures or follow some irrespectable traditions, Allah's providence intervened to curb any lapse in this course. Ibn Al-Atheer reported Muhammad [pbuh] as saying: "I have never tried to do what my people do except for two times. Every time Allah intervened and checked me from doing so and I never did that again. Once I told my fellow-shepherd to take care of my sheep when we were in the upper part of Makkah. I wanted to go down to Makkah and entertain myself as the young men did. I went down to the first house of Makkah where I heard music. I entered and asked: ‘What is this?’ Someone answered: ‘It is a wedding party.’ I sat down and listened but soon went into deep sleep. I was awakened by the heat of the sun. I went back to my fellow-shepherd and told him of what had happened to me. I have never tried it again."

Al-Bukhari reported on the authority of Jabir bin ‘Abdullah that he said: "While the people were rebuilding Al-Ka‘bah, the Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] went with ‘Abbas to carry some stones. ‘Abbas said: ‘Put your loincloth round your neck to protect you from the stones.’ (As he did that) the Prophet [pbuh] fell to the ground and his eyes turned skyward. Later on he woke up and shouted: ‘My loincloth... my loincloth.’ He wrapped himself in his loincloth." In another report: "His loins were never seen afterwards." [Bukhari Chapter: The Building of Al-Ka'bah, 1/540]

The authorities agree in ascribing to the youth of Muhammad [pbuh] modesty of deportment, virtuous behaviour and graceful manners. He proved himself to be the ideal of manhood, and to possess a spotless character. He was the most obliging to his compatriots, the most honest in his talk and the mildest in temper. He was the most gentle-hearted, chaste, hospitable and always impressed people by his piety-inspiring countenance. He was the most truthful and the best to keep covenant. His fellow-citizens, by common consent, gave him the title of Al-‘Ameen (trustworthy). The Mother of believers, Khadijah [R], once said: He unites uterine relations, he helps the poor and the needy, he entertains the guests and endures hardships in the path of truthfulness. [Bukhari 1/3]



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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 12 September 2006 at 11:35am

In the Shade of the Message and Prophethood

In the Cave of Hira’

When Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] was nearly forty, he had been wont to pass long hours in retirement meditating and speculating over all aspects of creation around him. This meditative temperament helped to widen the mental gap between him and his compatriots. He used to provide himself with Sawiq (barley porridge) and water and then directly head for the hills and ravines in the neighbourhood of Makkah. One of these in particular was his favourite resort — a cave named Hira’, in the Mount An-Nour. It was only two miles from Makkah, a small cave 4 yards long and 1.75 yard wide. He would always go there and invite wayfarers to share him his modest provision. He used to devote most of his time, and Ramadan in particular, to worship and meditation on the universe around him. His heart was restless about the moral evils and idolatry that were rampant among his people; he was as yet helpless because no definite course, or specific approach had been available for him to follow and rectify the ill practices around him. This solitude attended with this sort of contemplative approach must be understood in its Divine perspective. It was a preliminary stage to the period of grave responsibilities that he was to shoulder very soon. [Rahmat Al-lil'alameen 1/47; Ibn Hisham 1/235,236; Fi Zilal Al-Qur'an 29/166]

Privacy and detachment from the impurities of life were two indispensable prerequisites for the Prophet’s soul to come into close communion with the Unseen Power that lies behind all aspects of existence in this infinite universe. It was a rich period of privacy which lasted for three years and ushered in a new era, of indissoluble contact with that Power. [Fi Zilal Al-Qur'an 29/166,167]

 

Gabriel brings down the Revelation

When he was forty, the age of complete perfection at which Prophets were always ordered to disclose their Message, signs of his Prophethood started to appear and twinkle on the horizons of life; they were the true visions he used to experience for six months. The period of Prophethood was 23 years; so the period of these six months of true visions constituted an integral part of the forty-six parts of Prophethood. In Ramadan, in his third year of solitude in the cave of Hira’, Allah's Will desired His mercy to flow on earth and Muhammad [pbuh] was honoured with Prophethood, and the light of Revelation burst upon him with some verses of the Noble Qur’an [Fath Al-Bari 1/27]

As for the exact date, careful investigation into circumstantial evidence and relevant clues point directly to Monday, 21st. Ramadan at night, i.e. August, 10, 610 A.D. with Prophet Muhammad [pbuh] exactly 40 years, 6 months and 12 days of age, i.e. 39 Gregorian years, 3 months and 22 days. [There is some contrast between scholars about the fixed day on which the Revelation started, but I have written here what seems to be the correct one. For detail please see Sahih Muslim, Musnad Ahmed, Rahmat Al-lil'alameen, Al-Hakim, and Al-Baihaqi, etc.]

‘Aishah, the veracious, gave the following narration of that most significant event that brought the Divine light which would dispel the darkness of disbelief and ignorance. It led life down a new course and brought about the most serious amendment to the line of the history of mankind:

Forerunners of the Revelation assumed the form of true visions that would strikingly come true all the time. After that, solitude became dear to him and he would go to the cave, Hira’, to engage in Tahannuth (devotion) there for a certain number of nights before returning to his family, and then he would return for provisions for a similar stay. At length, unexpectedly, the Truth (the angel) came to him and said, "Recite." "I cannot recite," he (Muhammad [pbuh]) said. The Prophet [pbuh] described: "Then he took me and squeezed me vehemently and then let me go and repeated the order ‘Recite.’ ‘I cannot recite’ said I, and once again he squeezed me and let me till I was exhausted. Then he said: ‘Recite.’ I said ‘I cannot recite.’ He squeezed me for a third time and then let me go and said:

"Read! In the Name of your Lord, Who has created (all that exists), has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood). Read! and your Lord is the Most Generous.’" [Al-Qur'an 96:1-3]

The Prophet [pbuh] repeated these verses. He was trembling with fear. At this stage, he came back to his wife Khadijah, and said, "Cover me, ... cover me." They covered him until he restored security. He apprised Khadijah of the incident of the cave and added that he was horrified. His wife tried to soothe him and reassured him saying, "Allah will never disgrace you. You unite uterine relations; you bear the burden of the weak; you help the poor and the needy, you entertain the guests and endure hardships in the path of truthfulness."

She set out with the Prophet [pbuh] to her cousin Waraqa bin Nawfal bin Asad bin ‘Abd Al-‘Uzza, who had embraced Christianity in the pre-Islamic period, and used to write the Bible in Hebrew. He was a blind old man. Khadijah said: "My cousin! Listen to your nephew!" Waraqa said: "O my nephew! What did you see?" The Messenger of Allah[pbuh] told him what had happened to him. Waraqa replied: "This is ‘Namus’ i.e. (the angel who is entrusted with Divine Secrets) that Allah sent to Moses. I wish I were younger. I wish I could live up to the time when your people would turn you out." Muhammad [pbuh] asked: "Will they drive me out?" Waraqa answered in the affirmative and said: "Anyone who came with something similar to what you have brought was treated with hostility; and if I should be alive till that day, then I would support you strongly." A few days later Waraqa died and the revelation also subsided. [Bukhari 1/2,3]

At-Tabari and Ibn Hisham reported that the Messenger of Allah [pbuh] left the cave of Hira’ after being surprised by the Revelation, but later on, returned to the cave and continued his solitude. Afterwards, he came back to Makkah. At-Tabari reported on this incident, saying:

After mentioning the coming of the Revelation, the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] said: "I have never abhorred anyone more than a poet or a mad man. I can not stand looking at either of them. I will never tell anyone of Quraish of my Revelation. I will climb a mountain and throw myself down and die. That will relieve me. I went to do that but halfway up the mountain, I heard a voice from the sky saying ‘O Muhammad! You are the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] and I am Gabriel.’ I looked upwards and saw Gabriel in the form of a man putting his legs on the horizon. He said: ‘O Muhammad You are the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] and I am Gabriel.’ I stopped and looked at him. His sight distracted my attention from what I had intended to do. I stood in my place transfixed. I tried to shift my eyes away from him. He was in every direction I looked at. I stopped in my place without any movement until Khadijah sent someone to look for me. He went down to Makkah and came back while I was standing in the same place. Gabriel then left, and I went back home. I found Khadijah at home, so I sat very close to her. She asked: ‘Father of Al-Qasim! Where have you been? I sent someone to look for you. He went to Makkah and returned to me.’ I told her of what I had seen. She replied: ‘It is a propitious sign, O my husband. Pull yourself together, I swear by Allah that you are a Messenger for this nation.’ Then she stood up and went to Waraqa and informed him. Waraqa said: ‘I swear by Allah that he has received the same Namus, i.e. angel that was sent to Moses. He is the Prophet of this nation. Tell him to be patient.’ She came back to him and told him of Waraqa’s words. When the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] finished his solitary stay and went down to Makkah, he went to Waraqa, who told him: ‘You are the Prophet of this nation. I swear by Allah that you have received the same angel that was sent to Moses.’" [At-Tabari 2/207; Ibn Hisham 1/237,238]

 

Interruption of Revelation

Ibn Sa‘d reported on the authority of Ibn ‘Abbas that the Revelation paused for a few days.[Fath Al-Bari 1/27,12/360] After careful study, this seems to be the most possible. To say that it lasted for three and a half years, as some scholars allege, is not correct, but here there is no room to go into more details.

Meanwhile, the Prophet [pbuh], was caught in a sort of depression coupled with astonishment and perplexity. Al-Bukhari reported:

The Divine inspiration paused for a while and the Prophet [pbuh] became so sad, as we have heard, that he intended several times to throw himself from the tops of high mountains, and every time he went up the top of a mountain in order to throw himself down, Gabriel would appear before him and say: "O Muhammad! You are indeed Allah's Messenger in truth," whereupon his heart would become quiet and he would calm down and return home. Whenever the period of the coming of the Revelation used to become long, he would do as before, but Gabriel would appear again before him and say to him what he had said before. [Bukhari 2/340]

 

Once more, Gabriel brings All⨦#146;s Revelation

Ibn Hajar said: ‘That (the pause of Allah's revelation for a few days) was to relieve the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] of the fear he experienced and to make him long for the Revelation. When the shades of puzzle receded, the flags of truth were raised, the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] knew for sure that he had become the Messenger of the Great Lord. He was also certain that what had come to him was no more than the ambassador of inspiration. His waiting and longing for the coming of the revelation constituted a good reason for his steadfastness and self-possession on the arrival of Allah's inspiration, Al-Bukhari reported on the authority of Jabir bin ‘Abdullah that he had heard the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] speak about the period of pause as follows:

"While I was walking, I heard a voice from the sky. I looked up, and surely enough, it was the same angel who had visited me in the cave of Hira’. He was sitting on a chair between the earth and the sky. I was very afraid of him and knelt on the ground. I went home saying: ‘Cover me …, Cover me …’. Allah revealed to me the verses:

‘O you (Muhammad [pbuh]) enveloped (in garments)! Arise and warn! And your Lord (All⨩ magnify! And your garments purify! And keep away from Ar-Rujz (the idols)!’" [Al-Qur'an 74:1-5]

After that the revelation started coming strongly, frequently and regularly. [Bukhari, The Book of Tafseer, 2/733]

 

Some details pertinent to the successive stages of Revelation

Before we go into the details of the period of communicating the Message and Prophethood, we would like to get acquainted with the stages of the Revelation which constituted the main source of the Message and the subject-matter of the Call. Ibn Al-Qayyim, mentioning the stages of the Revelation, said:

The First: The period of true vision. It was the starting point of the Revelation to the Messenger of Allah[pbuh].

The Second: What the angel invisibly cast in the Prophet’s mind and heart. The Messenger of Allah[pbuh] said: "The Noble Spirit revealed to me ‘No soul will perish until it exhausts its due course, so fear Allah and gently request Him. Never get so impatient to the verge of disobedience of Allah What Allah has can never be acquired but through obedience to Him.’"

The Third: The angel used to visit the Messenger of Allah [pbuh] in the form of a human being and would speak to him directly. This would enable him to fully understand what the angel said. The angel was sometimes seen in this form by the Prophet’s Companions.

The Fourth: The angel came to him like the toll of a bell and this was the most difficult form because the angel used to seize him tightly and sweat would stream from his forehead even on the coldest day. If the Prophet [pbuh] was on his camel, the camel would not withstand the weight, so it would immediately kneel down on the ground. Once the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] had such a revelation when he was sitting and his thigh was on Zaid’s, Zaid felt the pressure had almost injured his thigh.

The Fifth: The Prophet [pbuh] saw the angel in his actual form. The angel would reveal to him what Allah had ordered him to reveal. This, as mentioned in (Qur’an, in S?An-Najm (Chapter 53 - The Star), happened twice.

The Sixth: What Allah Himself revealed to him in heaven i.e. when he ascended to heaven and received Allah's behest of Salⴼ/i> (prayer).

The Seventh: Allah's Words to His Messenger [pbuh] at first hand without the mediation of an angel. It was a privilege granted to Moses and clearly attested in the Qur’an as it is attested to our Prophet [pbuh] in the Surah Al-Isra (Chapter 17 - The Journey by Night) of the Noble Qur’an

Some religious scholars added a controversial eighth stage in which they state that Allah spoke to the Prophet [pbuh] directly without a curtain in between. This issue remains however unconfirmed. [Za'd Al-Ma'ad 1/18]

 

Proclaiming Allah the All-High; and the Immediate Constituents

The first Revelation sent to the Prophet [pbuh] implied several injunctions, simple in form but highly effective and of serious far-reaching ramifications. The angel communicated to him a manifest Message saying:

"O you (Muhammad [pbuh]) enveloped (in garments)! Arise and warn! And your Lord (Allah magnify! And your garments purify! And keep away from Ar-Rujz (the idols). And give not a thing in order to have more (or consider not your deeds of Allah's obedience as a favour to Allah. And be patient for the sake of your Lord (i.e. perform your duty to Allah!" [Al-Qur'an 74:1-7]

For convenience and ease of understanding, we are going to segment the Message into its immediate constituents:

  1. The ultimate objective of warning is to make sure that no one breaching the pleasures of Allah in the whole universe is ignorant of the serious consequences that his behaviour entails, and to create a sort of unprecedented shock within his mind and heart.
  2. ‘Magnifying the Lord’ dictates explicitly that the only pride allowed to nourish on the earth is exclusively Allah's to the exclusion of all the others’.
  3. ‘Cleansing the garments and shunning all aspects of abomination’ point directly to the indispensable need to render both the exterior and interior exceptionally chaste and pure, in addition to the prerequisite of sanctifying the soul and establishing it highly immune against the different sorts of impurities and the various kinds of pollutants. Only through this avenue can the soul of the Prophet [pbuh] reach an ideal status and become eligible to enjoy the shady mercy of Allah and His protection, security, guidance and ever-shining light; and will consequently set the highest example to the human community, attract the sound hearts and inspire awe and reverence in the stray ones in such a manner that all the world, in agreement or disagreement, will head for it and take it as the rock-bed in all facets of their welfare.
  4. The Prophet [pbuh] must not regard his strife in the way of Allah as a deed of grace that entitles him to a great reward. On the contrary, he has to exert himself to the utmost, dedicate his whole efforts and be ready to offer all sacrifices in a spirit of self-forgetfulness enveloped by an ever-present awareness of Allah without the least sense of pride in his deeds or sacrifices.
  5. The last verse of the Qur’an revealed to the Prophet [pbuh] alludes to the hostile attitude of the obdurate disbelievers, who will jeer at him and his followers. They are expected to disparage him and step up their malice to the point of scheming against his life and lives of all the believers around him. In this case he has got to be patient and is supposed to persevere and display the highest degree of stamina for the sole purpose of attaining the pleasure of Allah

These were the basic preliminaries that the Prophet [pbuh] had to observe, very simple injunctions in appearance, greatly fascinating in their calm rhythm, but highly effective in practice. They constituted the trigger that aroused a far-ranging tempest in all the corners of the world.

The verses comprise the constituents of the new call and propagation of the new faith. A warning logically implies that there are malpractices with painful consequences to be sustained by the perpetrators, and since the present life is not necessarily the only room to bring people to account for their misdeeds or some of them, then the warning would necessarily imply calling people to account on another day, i.e. the Day of Resurrection, and this per se suggests the existence of a life other than this one we are living. All the verses of the Noble Qur’an call people to testify explicitly to the Oneness of Allah to delegate all their affairs to Allah the All-High, and to subordinate the desires of the self and the desires of Allah's servants to the attainment of His Pleasures.

The constituents of the call to Islam could, briefly speaking, go as follows:

  1. Testimony to the Oneness of Allah
  2. Belief in the Hereafter.
  3. Sanctifying one’s soul and elevating it high above evils and abominations that conduce to terrible consequences, besides this, there is the dire need for virtues and perfect manners coupled with habituating oneself to righteous deeds.
  4. Committing one’s all affairs to Allah the All-High.
  5. All the foregoing should run as a natural corollary to unwavering belief in Muhammad’s Message, and abidance by his noble leadership and righteous guidance.

The verses have been prefaced, in the voice of the Most High, by a heavenly call mandating the Prophet [pbuh] to undertake this daunting responsibility (calling people unto Allah. The verses meant to extract him forcibly out of his sleep, divest him of his mantle and detach him from the warmth and quiet of life, and then drive him down a new course attended with countless hardships, and requiring a great deal of strife in the way of Allah

"O you (Muhammad [pbuh]) enveloped (in garments)! Arise and warn." [Al-Qur'an 74:1-2]

Suggesting that to live to oneself is quite easy, but it has been decided that you have to shoulder this heavy burden; consequently sleep, comfort, or warm bed are items decreed to be alien in your lexicon of life. O Muhammad, arise quickly for the strife and toil awaiting you; no time is there for sleep and such amenities; grave responsibilities have been Divinely determined to fall to your lot, and drive you into the turmoil of life to develop a new sort of precarious affinity with the conscience of people and the reality of life.

The Prophet [pbuh] managed quite successfully to rise to his feet and measure up to the new task, he went ahead in a spirit of complete selflessness, relentlessly striving and never abating in carrying the burden of the great Trust, the burden of enlightening mankind, and the heavy weight of the new faith and strife for over twenty years, nothing distracting his attention from the awesome commission. May Allah reward him, for us and all humanity, the best ending. The following research at hand gives an account in miniature of his long strive and uninterrupted struggle he made after receiving the ministry of Messengership. [Fi Zilal Al-Qur'an 29/168-171,182]



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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 19 September 2006 at 2:40pm

Phases and Stages of the Call

The Muhammadan Call could be divided into two phases distinctively demarcated:

  1. The Makkan phase: nearly thirteen years.
  2. The Madinese phase: fully ten years.

Each of the two phases included distinctive features easily discernible through accurate scrutiny into the circumstances that characterized each of them.

The Makkan phase can be divided into three stages:

  1. The stage of the secret Call: three years.
  2. The stage of the proclamation of the Call in Makkah: from the beginning of the fourth year of Prophethood to almost the end of the tenth year.
  3. The stage of the call to Islam and propagating it beyond Makkah: it lasted from the end of tenth year of the Prophethood until Muhammad’s [pbuh] emigration to Madinah.

The Madinese phase will be considered later in its due course.

 

The First Stage : Strife in the Way of the Call

Three Years of Secret Call

It is well-known that Makkah was the centre for the Arabs, and housed the custodians of Al-Ka‘bah. Protection and guardianship of the idols and stone graven images that received veneration on the part of all the Arabs lay in the hands of the Makkans. Hence the difficulty of hitting the target of reform and rectitude in a place considered the den of idolatry. Working in such an atmosphere no doubt requires unshakable will and determination, that is why the call unto Islam assumed a clandestine form so that the Makkans should not be enraged by the unexpected surprise.

 

The Early Converts

The Prophet [pbuh] naturally initiated his sacred mission right from home and then moved to the people closely associated with him. He called unto Islam whomsoever he thought would attest the truth which had come from his Lord. In fact, a host of people who nursed not the least seed of doubt as regards the Prophet [pbuh], immediately responded and quite readily embraced the true faith. They are known in the Islamic literature as the early converts.

Khadijah, the Prophet’s spouse, the mother of believers, was the first to enter the fold of Islam followed by his freed slave Zaid bin Harithah, his cousin, ‘Ali bin Abi Talib, who had been living with him since his early childhood, and next came his intimate friend Abu Bakr As-Siddiq (Abu Bakr the truth verifier). All of those professed Islam on the very first day of the call. [Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/50] Abu Bakr, and from the first day he embraced Islam, proved to be an energetic and most zealous activist. He was wealthy, obliging, mild and upright. People used to frequent his house and draw nigh to him for his knowledge, amity, pleasant company and business. He invited whomever he had confidence in to Islam and through his personal efforts a good number of people converted to Islam, such as ‘Uthman bin ‘Affan Al-Umawi, Az-Zubair bin ‘Awwam Al-Asadi, ‘Abdur Rahman bin ‘Awf, Sa‘d bin Abi Waqqas, Az-Zuhri and Talhah bin ‘Ubaidullah At-Tamimy. Those eight men constituted the forerunners and more specifically the vanguard of the new faith in Arabia. Among the early Muslim were Bilal bin Rabah (the Abyssinian), Abu ‘Ubaidah bin Al-Jarrah from Bani Harith bin Fahr (the most trustworthy of the Muslim Nation), Abu Salamah bin ‘Abd Al-Asad, Al-Arqam bin Abi Al-Arqam from the tribe of Makhzum, ‘Uthman bin Maz‘oun and his two brothers Qudama and ‘Abdullah, ‘Ubaidah bin Al-Harith bin Al-Muttalib bin ‘Abd Munaf, Sa‘id bin Zaid Al-‘Adawi and his wife Fatimah - daughter of Al-Khattab (the sister of ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab), Khabbab bin Al-Aratt, ‘Abdullah bin Mas‘ud Al-Hadhali and many others. These were the Muslim predecessors. They belonged to various septs of Quraish. Ibn Hisham, a biographer, counted them to be more than forty. [Ibn Hisham 1/245-262]

Ibn Ishaq said: "Then people entered the fold of Islam in hosts, men or women and the new faith could no longer be kept secret." [Ibn Hisham 1/262]

The Prophet [pbuh] used to meet and teach, the new converts, the religion in privacy because the call to Islam was still running on an individual and secret basis. Revelation accelerated and continued after the first verses of "O you wrapped in garments." The verses and pieces of Surahs (chapters) revealed at this time were short ones with wonderful strong pauses and quite fascinating rhythms in full harmony with that delicate whispering setting. The central topic running through them focused on sanctifying the soul, and deterring the Muslims from falling prey to the deceptive glamour of life. The early verses used as well to give a highly accurate account of the Hell and the Garden (Paradise), leading the believers down a new course diametrically opposed to the ill practices rampant amongst their compatriots.

 

As-Salah (the Prayer)

Muqatil bin Sulaiman said: "Salah (prayer) was established as an obligatory ritual at an early stage of the Islamic Call, a two rak‘ ah (unit of prayer) Salah in the morning and the same in the evening:

"And glorify the praises of your Lord in the ‘Ashi (i.e. the time period after the mid-noon till sunset) and in the Ibkar (i.e. the time period from early morning or sunrise till before mid-noon)." [Al-Qur'an 40:55]

Ibn Hijr said: "Definitely the Prophet [pbuh] used to pray before ‘The Night Journey’ but it still remains a matter of controversy whether or not the prayer was established as an obligatory ritual before imposing the rules of the usual five prayers a day. It is related that obligatory prayer was established twice a day, in the morning before sunrise and after sunset. It is reported through a chain of narrators that when the Prophet [pbuh] received the first Revelation, Gabriel - the angel, proceeded and taught him how to observe Wudu (ablution). When the Prophet [pbuh] had finished, he took a handful of water and sprinkled it on his loins. [Mukhtasar Seerat-ur-Rasool p.88]

Ibn Hisham reported that when it was time for prayers, the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] and his Companions went into a mountain valley to pray secretly. Abu Talib once saw the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] and Ali praying, he asked them what they were up to. When he got to know that it was obligatory prayer, he told them to stay constant in their practice. [Ibn Hisham 1/247]

 

The Quraish*tes learn about the Call

This stage of the Call, even though conducted in a clandestine manner and on an individual basis, its news leaked out and assumed a public interest all over Makkah. In the beginning, the Makkan leaders did not care much about Muhammad [pbuh]and took no heed of his teachings. At first, they thought that Muhammad [pbuh] was merely a religious philosophist like Omaiyah bin Abi As-Salt, Quss bin Sa‘idah, ‘Amr bin Nufail and their ilk who used to philosophize on godship and religious obligations. But this attitude of indifference soon changed into real apprehension. The polytheists of Quraish began to watch Muhammad’s movements closely and anxiously for fear of spreading his Call and producing a change in the prevalent mentality. [Fiqh As-Seerah p.76]

For three underground years of activism, a group of believers emerged stamped by a spirit of fraternity and cooperation with one definite objective in their mind: propagating and deeply establishing the call unto Islam. For full three years Muhammad [pbuh] had been content to teach within a rather narrow circle. The time had, however, come to preach the faith of the Lord openly. The angel Gabriel had brought him down a further Revelation of Allah's Will to confront his people, invalidate their falsehood and crush down their idolatrous practices.

Say: (O Muhammad) If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, MercifuL
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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 27 September 2006 at 5:45am

The Second Phase: Open Preaching

First Revelation regarding the Preaching

"And warn your tribe (O Muhammad [pbuh]) of near kindred." [Al-Qur'an 26:214].

This was the first verse to be revealed in this concern. It is included in Surah Ash-Shu‘ara (Chapter 26 – The Poets) which relates the story of Moses [AWS] from his early days of Prophethood going through his migration with the Children of Israel, their escape from the Pharaoh and his folk, and the drowning Pharaoh and his hosts. This Chapter in fact narrates the different stages that Moses [AWS] passed through in his struggle with Pharaoh and the mission of calling his people unto Allah Moreover, it includes stories that speak about the terrible end in store for those who belied the Messengers such as the people of Noah, ‘Ad, Thamud, Abraham, Lout and Ahlul-Aikah (Companions of the Wood). (A group of people who used to worship a tree called Aikah)

Chronologically, this Chapter belongs to the middle Makkan period, when the contact of the light of Prophecy with the cultural milieu of pagan Makkah was testing the Makkans in their most arrogant mood. The Message that this Chapter communicates is in brief: "The Truth is insurmountable. When the spirit of Prophecy came to Makkah, it was resisted by the votaries of evil; but Truth, unlike falsehood, is bound to stay, whereas falsehood is surely perishable."

 

Calling the Closest Kinspeople

In obedience to Allah's Commands, Muhammad [pbuh] rallied his kinsmen of Bani Hashim with a group of Bani Al-Muttalib bin ‘Abd Munaf. The audience counted forty-five men.

Abu Lahab immediately took the initiative and addressed the Prophet [pbuh]: "These are your uncles and cousins, speak on to the point, but first of all you have got to know that your kinspeople are not in a position to withstand all the Arabs. Another point you have got to bear in mind is that your relatives are sufficient unto you. If you follow their tradition, it will be easier for them than to face the other clans of Quraish supported by the other Arabs. Verily, I have never heard of anyone who has incurred more harm on his kinspeople than you." The Messenger of Allah[pbuh] kept silent and said nothing in that meeting.

He invited them to another meeting and managed to secure audience. He then stood up and delivered a short speech explaining quite cogently what was at stake. He said: "I celebrate Allah's praise, I seek His help, I believe in Him, I put my trust in Him, I bear witness that there is no god to be worshipped but Allah with no associate. A guide can never lie to his people. I swear by Allah there is no god but He, that I have been sent as a Messenger to you, in particular and to all the people, in general. I swear by Allah you will die just as you sleep, you will be resurrected just as you wake up. You will be called to account for your deeds. It is then either Hell forever or the Garden (Paradise) forever."

Abu Talib replied: "We love to help you, accept your advice and believe in your words. These are your kinspeople whom you have collected and I am one of them but I am the fastest to do what you like. Do what you have been ordered. I shall protect and defend you, but I can’t quit the religion of ‘Abdul-Muttalib."

Abu Lahab then said to Abu Talib: " I swear by Allah that this is a bad thing. You must stop him before the others do." Abu Talib, however, answered: "I swear by Allah to protect him as long as I am alive." [Fiqh As-Seerah p.77,78]

 

On Mount As-Safa

After the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] became sure of Abu Talib’s commitment to his protection while he called the people unto Allah he stood up on Mount As-Safa one day and called out loudly: "O Sabahah! [This is an Arabic expression used when one appeals for help or draws the attention of others to some dangers] " Septs of Quraish came to him. He called them to testify to the Oneness of Allah and believe in his Messengership and the Day of Resurrection. Al-Bukhari reported part of this story on the authority of Ibn ‘Abbas [R]. He said: "When the following verses were revealed:

"And warn your tribe (O Muhammad [pbuh]) of near kindred." [Al-Qur'an 26:214]

The Messenger of Allah[pbuh] ascended Mount As-Safa and started to call: "O Bani Fahr! O Bani ‘Adi (two septs of Quraish)." Many people gathered and those who couldn’t, sent somebody to report to them. Abu Lahab was also present. The Prophet [pbuh] said: "You see, if I were to tell you that there were some horsemen in the valley planning to raid you, will you believe me?" They said: "Yes, we have never experienced any lie from you." He said: "I am a warner to you before a severe torment." Abu Lahab promptly replied: "Perish you all the day! Have you summoned us for such a thing?" The verses were immediately revealed on that occasion [Bukhari 2/702; Muslim 1/114]:

"Perish the two hands of Abi Lahab..." [Al-Qur'an 111:1].

Muslim reported another part of this story on the authority of Abu Hurairah [R] — He said: "When the following verses were revealed:

"And warn your tribe (O Muhammad [pbuh]) of near kindred." [26:214]

The Messenger of Allah[pbuh] called all the people of Quraish; so they gathered and he gave them a general warning. Then he made a particular reference to certain tribes, and said: "O Quraish, rescue yourselves from the Fire; O people of Bani Ka‘b, rescue yourselves from Fire; O Fatimah, daughter of Muhammad [pbuh] , rescue yourself from the Fire, for I have no power to protect you from Allah in anything except that I would sustain relationship with you." [Muslim 1/114; Bukhari 1/385,2/702]

It was verily a loud suggestive Call stating unequivocally to the closest people that belief in his Message constituted the corner-stone of any future relation between him and them, and that the blood-relation on which the whole Arabian life was based, had ceased to exist in the light of that Divine ultimatum.

 

Shouting the Truth and the Polytheists’ Reaction

The Prophet’s voice kept reverberating in Makkah until the following verse was revealed:

"Therefore proclaim openly (Allah's Message — Islamic Monotheism), that which you are commanded, and turn away from Al-Mushrik?> (polytheists)." [Al-Qur'an 15:94]

He then commenced discrediting the superstitious practices of idolatry, revealing its worthless reality and utter impotence, and giving concrete proofs that idolatry per se or taking it as the media through which an idolater could come in contact with Allah is manifest falsehood.

The Makkans, on their part, burst into outrage and disapproval. Muhammad’s [pbuh] words created a thunderbolt that turned the Makkan time-honoured ideological life upside down. They could ill afford to hear someone attaching to polytheists and idolaters, the description of straying people. They started to rally their resources to settle down the affair, quell the onward marching revolution and deal a pre-emptive strike to its votaries before it devours and crushes down their consecrated traditions and long standing heritage. The Makkans had the deep conviction that denying godship to anyone save Allah and that belief in the Divine Message and the Hereafter are interpreted in terms of complete compliance and absolute commitment, and this in turn leaves no area at all for them to claim authority over themselves and over their wealth, let alone their subordinates. In short, their arrogated religiously-based supremacy and highhandedness would no longer be in effect; their pleasures would be subordinated to the pleasures of Allah and His Messenger and lastly they would have to abstain from incurring injustices on those whom they falsely deemed to be weak, and perpetrating dreadful sins in their everyday life. They had already been fully aware of these meanings, that is why their souls would not condescend to accept this ‘disgraceful’ position not out of motives based on dignity and honour but rather because:

"Nay! (Man denies Resurrection and Reckoning. So) he desires to continue committing sins." [Al-Qur'an 75:5]

They had been aware of all these consequences but they could afford to do nothing before an honest truthful man who was the highest example of good manners and human values. They had never known such an example in the history of their folks or grandfathers. What would they do? They were baffled, and they had the right to be so.

Following careful deliberations, they hit upon the only target available, i.e. to contact the Messenger’s uncle, Abu Talib and request him to intervene and advise his nephew to stop his activities. In order to attach a serious and earnest stamp to their demand, they chose to touch the most sensitive area in Arabian life, viz., ancestral pride. They addressed Abu Talib in the following manner: "O Abu Talib! Your nephew curses our gods; finds faults with our way of life, mocks at our religion and degrades our forefathers; either you must stop him, or you must let us get at him. For you are in the same opposition as we are in opposition to him; and we will rid you of him." Abu Talib tried to appease their wrath by giving them a polite reply. The Prophet [pbuh] , however, continued on his way preaching Allah's religion and calling men hitherto, heedless of all their desperate attempts and malicious intentions. [Ibn Hisham 1/265]

 

An Advisory Council to debar Pilgrims from Muhammad’s Call

During those days, Quraish had another serious concern; the proclamation of the Call had only been a few months old when the season of pilgrimage was soon to come. Quraish knew that the Arab delegates were coming within a short time. They agreed that it was necessary to contemplate a device that was bound to alienate the Arab pilgrims from the new faith preached by Muhammad [pbuh] . They went to see Al-Waleed bin Al-Mugheerah to deliberate on this issue. Al-Waleed invited them to agree on a unanimous resolution that could enjoy the approbation of them all. However, they were at variance. Some suggested that they describe him as Kahin, i.e., soothsayer; but this suggestion was turned down on grounds that his words were not so rhymed. Others proposed Majnun, i.e., possessed by jinn; this was also rejected because no insinuations peculiar to that state of mind ware detected, they claimed. "Why not say he is a poet?" Some said. Here again they could not reach a common consent, alleging that his words were totally outside the lexicon of poetry. "OK then; let us accuse him of practising witchcraft," was a fourth suggestion. Here also Al-Waleed showed some reluctance saying that the Prophet [pbuh] was known to have never involved himself in the practice of blowing on the knots, and admitted that his speech was sweet tasting root and branch. He, however, found that the most plausible charge to be levelled against Muhammad [pbuh] was witchcraft. The ungodly company adopted this opinion and agreed to propagate one uniform formula to the effect that he was a magician so powerful and commanding in his art that he would successfully alienate son from father, man from his brother, wife from her husband and man from his clan. [Ibn Hisham 1/271; Fi Zilal Al-Qur'an 29/188]

It is noteworthy in this regard to say that Allah revealed sixteen verses as regards Al-Waleed and the cunning method he contemplated to manipulate the people expected to arrive in Makkah for pilgrimage. Allah says:

"Verily, he thought and plotted; so let him be cursed! How he plotted! And once more let him be cursed, how he plotted! Then he thought; then he frowned and he looked in a bad tempered way; then he turned back and was proud; then he said: ‘This is nothing but magic from that of old; this is nothing but the word of a human being!’ " [Al-Qur'an 74:18-25]

The most wicked of them was the sworn enemy of Islam and Muhammad [pbuh] , Abu Lahab, who would shadow the Prophet’s steps crying aloud, "O men, do not listen to him for he is a liar; he is an apostate." Nevertheless, Muhammad [pbuh] managed to create a stir in the whole area, and even to convince a few people to accept his Call. [At-Tirmidhi; Masud Ahmad, 3/492,4/341]

 

Attempts made to check the Onward March of Islam

Having fully perceived that Muhammad [pbuh] could never be desisted from his Call, Quraish, in a desperate attempt to quell the tidal wave of the Call, resorted to other cheap means acting from base motives:

  1. Scoffing, degrading, ridiculing, belying and laughter-instigating cheap manners, all of which levelled at the new converts in general, and the person of Muhammad [pbuh] in particular, with the aim of dragging the spirit of despair into their morale, and slackening their ardent zealotry. They used to denounce the Prophet [pbuh] as a man possessed by a jinn, or an insane person:

    "And they say: O you (Muhammad [pbuh]) to whom the Dhikr (the Qur’an has been sent down! Verily, you are a mad man." [Al-Qur'an 15:6]

    or a liar practising witchcraft,

    "And they (Arab pagans) wonder that a warner (Prophet Muhammad [pbuh]) has come to them from among themselves! And the disbelievers say: "This (Prophet Muhammad [pbuh]) is a sorcerer, a liar." [Al-Qur'an 38:4].

    Their eyes would also look at the good man as if they would ‘eat him up’, or trip him up, or disturb him from the position of stability or firmness. They used all sorts of terms of abuse ‘madman’ or ‘one possessed by an evil spirit’, and so on:

    "And verily, those who disbelieve would almost make you slip with their eyes through hatreds when they hear the Reminder (the Qur’an, and they say: Verily, he (Muhammad [pbuh]) is a madman!" [Al-Qur'an 68:51]

    Amongst the early converts, there was a group who had unfortunately no strong clan at their back to support them. These innocent souls were ridiculed and jeered in season and out of season. Referring to such people, the highbrow Quraish aristocrats used repeatedly to ask the Prophet [pbuh], with jest and scorn:

    "Allah has favoured from amongst us?" [Al-Qur'an 6:53]

    And Allah said:

    "Does not Allah know best those who are grateful?" [Al-Qur'an 6:53]

    The wicked used to laugh at the righteous in many ways:

    1. They would inwardly laugh at their Faith, because they felt themselves so superior.
    2. In public places, when the righteous passed, they used to insult and wink at them,
    3. In their own houses, they would run them down.
    4. Whenever and wherever they saw them, they reproached and called them fools who had lost their way. In the Hereafter, all these tricks and falsehoods will be shown for what they are, and the tables will be reversed. Allah had said:

    "Verily! (During the worldly life) those who committed crimes used to laugh at those who believed; and whenever they passed by them, used to wink one to another (in mockery); and when they returned to their own people, they would return jesting; and when they saw them, they said: ‘Verily! These have indeed gone astry!’ But they (disbelievers, sinners) had not been sent as watchers over them (the believers)." [Al-Qur'an 83:29-33]

  2. Distorting Muhammad’s teachings, evoking ambiguities, circulating false propaganda; forging groundless allegations concerning his doctrines, person and character, and going to excess in such a manner in order to screen off any scope of sound contemplation from the public. With respect to the Qur’ah they used to allege that it was:

    "Tales of the ancients, which he (Muhammad [pbuh]) has written down, and they are dictated to him morning and afternoon." [Al-Qur'an 25:5]

    The iniquitous went on ceaselessly inculcating in people’s ears that the Qur’an was not a true Revelation:

    "This (the Qur’an is nothing but a lie that he (Muhammad [pbuh]) has invented, and others have helped him at it." [Al-Qur'an 25:4]

    The wicked would also attribute to men of Allan just such motives and springs of action as they themselves would be guilty of in such circumstances. The pagans and those who were hostile to the revelation of Allah and Islam, could not understand how such wonderful verses could flow from the tongue of the Prophet [pbuh] without having someone to teach, and claimed:

    "It is only a human being who teaches him." [Al-Qur'an 16:103]

    They also raised another baseless and superficial objection:

    "Why does this Messenger (Muhammad [pbuh]) eat food and walk about in the markets (like ourselves)?" [Al-Qur'an 25:7]

    They were sadly ignorant and painfully at fault for they could not perceive that a teacher for mankind is one who shares their nature, mingles in their life, is acquainted with their doings, and sympathises with their joys and sorrows.

    The Noble Qur’an has vehemently refuted their charges and allegations and has explained that the utterances of the Prophet [pbuh] are the Revelations of the Lord and their nature and contents provide a bold challenge to those who attribute his Prophetic expressions to some base origin, at times to the mental throes of a dreaming reformer, at others to the effusion of a frenzied poet or the incoherent drivelling of an insane man.

  3. Contrasting the Qur’an with the mythology of the ancients in order to distract people’s interests from Allah's Words. Once An-Nadr bin Harith addressed the Quraish*tes in the following manner: "O Quraish! You have experienced an unprecedented phenomenon before which you have so far been desperately helpless. Muhammad [pbuh] grew up here among you and always proved to be highly obliging, the most truthful and trustworthy young man. However, later on when he reached manhood, he began to preach a new faith alien to your society, and opposed to your liking so you began to denounce him at a time as a sorcerer, at another as a soothsayer, a poet, or even an insane man. I swear by Allah he is not anyone of those. He is not interested in blowing on knots as magicians are, nor do his words belong to the world of soothsaying; he is not a poet either, for his mentality is not that of a rambler, nor is he insane because he has never been witnessed to develop any sort of hallucinations or insinuations peculiar to madmen. O people of Quraish, it is really a serious issue and I recommend that you reconsider your attitude."

    It is narrated that An-Nadr, at a later stage, headed for Heerah where he got conversant with the traditions of the kings of Persia and the accounts of people like Rustum and Asphandiar, and then returned to Makkah. Here he would always shadow the Messenger’s steps in whatever audiences the later held to preach the new faith and to caution people against Allah's wrath. An-Nadr would directly follow the Prophet [pbuh] and narrate to the same audience long tales about those people of Persia. He would then always append his talk with a question cunningly inquiring if he did not outdo Muhammad [pbuh].[Ibn Hisham 1/299,300,358; Tafheem-ul-Qur'an 4/8,9]. Ibn ‘Abbas [R] related that An-Nadr used to purchase songstresses who would through their bodily charms and songs entice away from Islam anyone developing the least attachment to the Prophet [pbuh]; in this regard, Allah says:

    "And of mankind is he who purchases idle talks (i.e. music, singing, etc.) to mislead (men) from the Path of Allah" [Al-Qur'an 31:6] [Tafheem-ul-Qur'an 4/9]

  4. In a fresh attempt to dissuade Muhammad [pbuh] from his principled stand, Quraish invited him to compromise on his teachings and come to terms with their pre-Islamic practices in such a way that he quits some of his religion and the polytheists do the same. Allah the All-High says:
  5. "They wish that you should compromise (in religion out of courtesy) with them, so they (too) would compromise with you." [Al-Qur'an 68:9].

    On the authority of Ibn Jareer and At-Tabarani, the idolaters offered that Muhammad [pbuh] worship their gods for a year, and they worship his Lord for a year. In another version, they said: "If you accept our gods, we would worship yours." Ibn Ishaq related that Al-Aswad bin Al-Muttalib, Al-Waleed bin Al-Mugheerah, Omaiyah bin Khalaf and Al-‘As bin Wa’il As-Sahmy, a constellation of influential polytheists, intercepted the Prophet [pbuh] while he was circumambulating in the Holy Sanctuary, and offered him to worship that they worshipped, and they worship that he worshipped so that, according to them, both parties would reach a common denominator. They added "Should the Lord you worship prove to be better than ours, then it will be so much better for us, but if our gods proved to be better than yours, then you would have benefit from it." Allah the Exalted, was decisive on the spot and revealed the following Chapter:

    "Say: "O Al-(disbelievers in Allah in His Oneness, in His Angels, in His Books, in His Messengers, in the Day of Resurrection, in Al-Qadar, etc.)! I worship not that which you worship, nor will you worship that which I worship. And I shall not worship that which you are worshipping, nor will you worship that which I worship. To you be your religion, and to me my religion (Islamic Monotheism). [Al-Qur'an 109] [Ibn Hisham 1/362]

Say: (O Muhammad) If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, MercifuL
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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 03 October 2006 at 5:33am
Persecutions

At the beginning of the fourth year of the Call, and for a period of some months, the polytheists confined their harassment tactics to the above-mentioned ones. But on realizing the futility of these procedures, they decided to organize a full-scale opposition campaign. They called for a general meeting and elected a committee of twenty-five men of Quraish notables with Abu Lahab, the Prophet’s uncle, as a chairman. Following some lengthy deliberations, they reached a decisive decision to take measures deemed to stop the tidal wave of Islam through different channels. They were determined to spare no effort, in combatting the new faith. They decided to malign the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] and put the new converts to different sorts of torture using all available resources. It was easy to put the resolutions relating to the new converts who were deemed weak into effect. As for the Prophet [pbuh] , it was not easy to malign him because he had such gravity, magnanimity and matchless perfection of character that deterred even his enemies from committing any act of folly against him. He had, as well, Abu Talib, his uncle, who came from a noble descent and had an awe-inspiring clan to support him. This situation was a source of great worry to the infidels, but they felt that they could no longer exercise patience or show any tolerance before a formidable power marching steadily to annul their religious office and temporal authority.

Abu Lahab himself took the initiative in the new series of persecutions, and started to mete out countless aspects of harmful deeds, hatred and spite against Muhammad [pbuh] . Starting with flinging stones at him, forcing his two sons to divorce their wives Ruqaiya and Umm Kulthum, the Prophet’s daughters [Fi Zilal Al-Qur'an 30/282; Tafheem-ul-Qur'an 6/522], gloating over him on his second son’s death calling him ‘the man cut off with offspring’, and then shadowing his step during the pilgrimage and forums seasons to belie him and entice the bedouins against him and his Call [At-Tirmidhi]. His wife, Umm Jameel bint Harb, the sister of Abu Sufyan had also her share in this ruthless campaign. She proved that she was not less than her husband in the enmity and hatred she harboured for the Prophet [pbuh] . She used to tie bundles of thorns with ropes of twisted palm-leaf fibre and strew them about in the paths which the Prophet [pbuh] was expected to take, in order to cause him bodily injury. She was a real shrew, bad-tempered with abusive language, highly skilled in the art of hatching intrigues, and enkindling the fire of discord and sedition. She was deservedly stained as ‘the carrier of firewood’ in the Noble Qur’an On receiving this news, she directly proceeded to the Mosque with a handful of pebbles to hurl at the Prophet [pbuh] . Allah the Great, took away her sight and she saw only Abu Bakr who was sitting immediately next to the Prophet [pbuh]. She then addressed Abu Bakr most audaciously threatening to break his Companion’s mouth with her handful of pebbles, and recited a line of verse pregnant with impudent defiance: "We have disobeyed the dispraised one, rejected his Call, and alienated ourselves from his religion." When she had left, Abu Bakr turned to the Prophet [pbuh] and inquired about the matter. The Prophet [pbuh] assured him that she did not see him because Allah had taken away her sight.[Ibn Hisham 1/335]

Abu Lahab and his household used to inflict those shameful examples of torture and harassment in spite of the blood relation that tied them for he was the Prophet’s uncle and both lived in two contiguous houses. Actually, few of the Prophet’s neighbours abstained from maligning him. They even threw the entrails of a goat on his back while he was performing his prayers. He always used to complain about that unbecoming neighbourliness but to no avail for they were deeply indulged in error.

Al-Bukhari, on the authority of Ibn Mas‘ud, narrated that once when the Prophet [pbuh] was prostrating himself while praying in Al-Ka‘bah, Abu Jahl asked his companions to bring the dirty foetus of a she-camel and place it on his back. ‘Uqbah bin Abi Mu‘ait was the unfortunate man who hastened to do this ignoble act. A peal of laughter rose amongst the infidels. In the meanwhile, Fatimah, the daughter of the Prophet [pbuh], happened to pass that way. She removed the filth from her father’s back. The Prophet [pbuh] invoked the wrath of Allah upon them, especially upon Abu Jahl, ‘Utbah bin Rabi‘a, Shaibah bin Rabi‘a, Al-Waleed bin ‘Utbah, Omaiyah bin Khalaf and ‘Uqbah bin Mu‘ait. It is recorded that all of them were killed in the battle of Badr. [Bukhari 1/37]

Scandal-mongering and backbiting were also amongst the means of oppression that the chiefs of Makkah, in general, and Omaiyah bin Khalaf, in particular, resorted to in their overall process of evil-doing. In this regard, Allah says:

"Woe to every slanderer and backbiter." [Al-Qur'an 104:1]

‘Uqbah bin Al-Mu‘ait once attended an audience of the Prophet [pbuh] and listened to him preaching Islam. A close friend of his, Ubai bin Khalaf, heard of this. He could not tolerate any act of this sort, so he reproached ‘Uqbah and ordered him to spit in the Prophet’s holy face, and he shamelessly did it. Ubai did not spare any thinkable way to malign the Prophet [pbuh] ; he even ground old decomposed bones and blew the powder on him. Al-Akhnas bin Shuraique Ath-Thaqafi used to detract from the character of the Prophet [pbuh] in season and out of season. The Noble Qur’an in direct reference to this man’s ignominious deeds, attached to him nine abominable traits:

"And obey not everyone who swears much, — and is considered worthless, a slanderer, going about with calumnies, hinderer of the good, transgressor, sinful, cruel — after all that base-born (of illegitimate birth)." [Al-Qur'an 68:10-13] [Ibn Hisham 1/356]

Abu Jahl’s arrogance and haughtiness blocked all avenues that could produce the least light of belief in his heart:

"So he (the disbeliever) neither believed (in this Qur’an in the Message of Muhammad [pbuh]) nor prayed!" [Al-Qur'an 75:31]

He, moreover, wanted to debar the Prophet [pbuh] from the Noble Sanctuary. It happened once that the Prophet [pbuh] was praying within the precinct of the Sacred House, when Abu Jahl proceeded threateningly and uttering abusive language. The Prophet [pbuh] chided him severely to which Abu Jahl answered back defiantly claiming that he was the mightiest in Makkah; Allah then revealed:

"Then, let him call upon his council (of helpers)." [Al-Qur'an 96:17]

In another version of the same incident, the Prophet [pbuh] took Abu Jahl by his neck, rocked him severely saying:

"Woe to you [O man (disbeliever)]! And then (again) woe to you! Again, woe to you [O man (disbeliever)]! And then (again) woe to you!" [Al-Qur'an 75:34, 35].

Notwithstanding this reproach, Abu Jahl would never wake up to himself nor did he realize his foolish practices. On the contrary, he was determined to go to extremes, and swore he would dust the Messenger’s face and tread on his neck. No sooner had he proceeded to fulfill his wicked intention than he was seen turning back shielding himself with his hands (as if something horrible in his pursuit). His companions asked him what the matter was. He said: "I perceived a ditch of burning fire and some wings flying." Later on, the Messenger commented saying, "If he had proceeded further, the angels would have plucked off his limbs one after another." [Fi Zilal Al-Qur'an 29/312; Muslim]

Such was the disgraceful treatment meted out to the Prophet [pbuh], the great man, respected as he was by his compatriots, with an influential man, his uncle Abu Talib, at his back to support him. If the matters were so with the Prophet [pbuh], what about those people deemed weak with no clan to support them? Let us consider their situation in some detail. Whenever Abu Jahl heard of the conversion of a man of high birth with powerful friends, he would degrade his prudence and intellect, undermine his judgement; and threaten him with dire consequences if he was a merchant. If the new convert was socially weak, he would beat him ruthlessly and put him to unspeakable tortures. [Ibn Hisham 1/320]

The uncle of ‘Uthman bin ‘Affan used to wrap ‘Uthman in a mat of palm leaves, and set fire under him. When Umm Mus‘ab bin ‘Umair heard of her son’s conversion, she put him to starvation and then expelled him from her house. He used to enjoy full luxurious easy life, but in the aftermath of the tortures he sustained, his skin got wizened, and he assumed a horrible physical appearance. [Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/57; Talqeeh Ahl-al-Athar p.60]

Bilal, the slave of Omaiyah bin Khalaf, was severely beaten by his master when the latter came to know of his conversion to Islam. Sometimes a rope was put around his neck and street boys were made to drag him through the streets and even across the hillocks of Makkah. At times he was subjected to prolonged deprivation of food and drink; at others he was bound up, made to lie down on the burning sand and under the crushing burden of heavy stones. Similar other measures were resorted to in order to force him to recant. All this proved in vain. He persisted in his belief in the Oneness of Allah On one such occasion, Abu Bakr was passing by; moved by pity, he purchased and emancipated him from slavery. [Ibn Hisham 1/317-318; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/57]

Another victim of the highhandedness of Quraish was ‘Ammar bin Yasir, a freed slave of Bani Makhzoum. He, along with his mother and father, embraced Islam in its early phase. They were repeatedly made to lie on the burning sand and were beaten severely. ‘Ammar was at times tossed up on embers. The Prophet [pbuh] was greatly moved by the atrocities which were being perpetrated upon ‘Ammar and his family. He always comforted them and raised his hand in prayer and said: "Be patient, you will verily find your abode in the Paradise." Yasir, the father, died because of repeated tortures. Sumaiyah, ‘Ammar’s mother was bayoneted to death by Abu Jahl himself, and thus merited the title of the first woman martyr in Islam. ‘Ammar himself was subjected to various modes of torture and was always threatened to sustain severe suffering unless he abused Muhammad [pbuh] and recanted to Al-Lat and ‘Uzza. In a weak moment, he uttered a word construed as recantation though his heart never wavered and he came back once to the Prophet [pbuh] , who consoled him for his pain and confirmed his faith. Immediately afterwards the following verse was revealed:

"Whoever disbelieved in Allah after his belief, except him who is forced thereto and whose heart is at rest with Faith —." [Al-Qur'an 16:106]

Abu Fakeeh, Aflah, a freed slave of Bani ‘Abd Ad-Dar was the third of those helpless victims. The oppressors used to fasten his feet with a rope and drag him in the streets of Makkah. [Eijaz At-Tanzil p.53]

Khabbab bin Al-Aratt was also an easy victim to similar outrages on every possible occasion. He experienced exemplary torture and maltreatment. The Makkan polytheists used to pull his hair and twist his neck, and made him lie on burning coal with a big rock on his chest to prevent him from escaping. Some Muslims of rank and position were wrapped in the raw skins of camels and thrown away, and others were put in armours and cast on burning sand in the scorching sun of Arabia. [Talqeeh Fuhoom Ahl-al-Athar p.60; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/57]

Even the women converts were not spared, and the list is too long to include all of them. Zanirah, An-Nahdiyah and her daughter, Umm ‘Ubais and many others had their full share of persecution at the hand of the oppressors — ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab included — of course before his conversion to Islam. [Ibn Hisham 1/319]

Abu Bakr, a wealthy believer, purchased and freed some of those she-slaves, just as he did with regard to Bilal and ‘Amir bin Fuheirah.

 

The House of Al-Arqam

In the light of these inhuman persecutions, the Prophet [pbuh] deemed it wise to advise his followers to conceal their conversion, in both word and deed. He took the decision to meet them secretly lest Quraish should get to know of his designs, and so take measures that might foil his goals. He also had in mind to avoid any sort of open confrontation with the polytheists because such a thing at this early stage would not be in the interest of the newly-born Call, still vulnerable and not fully fledged. Once, in the fourth year of Prophethood, the Muslims were on their way to the hillocks of Makkah to hold a clandestine meeting with the Prophet [pbuh], when a group of polytheists did observe their suspicious movement and began to abuse and fight them. Sa‘d bin Abi Waqqas beat a polytheist and shed his blood and thus recorded the first instance of bloodshed in the history of Islam. [Ibn Hisham 1/263]

The Prophet [pbuh], on the other hand, used to proclaim the Islamic Faith and preach it openly with deep devotion and studious pursuit, but for the general welfare of the new converts and in consideration of the strategic interest of Islam, he took Dar Al-Arqam, in As-Safa mountain, in the fifth year of his mission, as a temporary centre to meet his followers secretly and instruct them in the Qur’an and in the Islamic wisdom.

 

The First Migration to Abyssinia (Ethiopia)

The series of persecutions started late in the fourth year of Prophethood, slowly at first, but steadily accelerated and worsened day by day and month by month until the situation got so extremely grave and no longer tolerable in the middle of the fifth year, that the Muslims began to seriously think of feasible ways liable to avert the painful tortures meted out to them. It was at that gloomy and desperate time that S?Al-Kahf (Chapter 18 — The Cave) was revealed comprising definite answers to the questions with which the polytheists of Makkah constantly pestered the Prophet [pbuh] . It comprises three stories that include highly suggestive parables for the true believers to assimilate. The story of the Companions of the Cave implies implicit guidance for the believers to evacuate the hot spots of disbelief and aggression pregnant with the peril of enticement away from the true religion:

"(The young men said to one another): "And when you withdraw from them, and that which they worship, except Allah then seek refuge in the Cave, your Lord will open a way for you from His Mercy and will make easy for you your affair (i.e. will give you what you will need of provision, dwelling, etc.)" [Al-Qur'an 18:16].

Next, there is the story of Al-Khidr (The Teacher of Arabia) and Moses [AWS] in a clear and delicate reference to the vicissitudes of life. Future circumstances of life are not necessarily the products of the prevalent conditions, they might be categorically the opposite. In other words, the war waged against the Muslims would in the future assume a different turn, and the tyrannous oppressors would one day come to suffer and be subjected to the same tortures to which the Muslims were then put. Furthermore, there is the story of Dhul-Qarnain (The Two Horned One), the powerful ruler of west and east. This story says explicitly that Allah takes His righteous servants to inherit the earth and whatever in it. It also speaks that Allah raises a righteous man every now and then to protect the weak against the strong.

S?Az-Zumar (Chapter 39 — The Crowds) was then revealed pointing directly to migration and stating that the earth is spacious enough and the believers must not consider themselves constrained by the forces of tyranny and evil:

"Good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world, and Allah's earth is spacious (so if you cannot worship Allah at a place, then go to another)! Only those who are patient shall receive their rewards in full without reckoning." [Al-Qur'an 39:10].

The Prophet [pbuh] had already known that Ashamah Negus, king of Abyssinia (Ethiopia), was a fair ruler who would not wrong any of his subordinates, so he permitted some of his followers to seek asylum there in Abyssinia (Ethiopia).

In Rajab of the fifth year of Prophethood, a group of twelve men and four women left for Abyssinia (Ethiopia). Among the emigrants were ‘Uthman bin ‘Affan and his wife Ruqaiyah (the daughter of the Prophet [pbuh]). With respect to these two emigrants, the Prophet [pbuh] said:

"They are the first people to migrate in the cause of Allah after Abraham and Lot [AWS]."

They sneaked out of Makkah under the heavy curtain of a dark night and headed for the sea where two boats happened to be sailing for Abyssinia (Ethiopia), their destination. News of their intended departure reached the ears of Quraish, so some men were despatched in their pursuit, but the believers had already left Shuaibah Port towards their secure haven where they were received warmly and accorded due hospitality.

In Ramadan of the same year, the Prophet [pbuh] went into the Holy Sanctuary where there was a large host of Quraish polytheists, including some notables and celebrities. Suddenly he began reciting Surah An-Najm (Chapter 41 — The Star). The awe-inspiring Words of Allah descended unawares upon them and they immediately got stunned by them. It was the first time for them to be shocked by the truthful Revelation. It had formerly been the favourite trick of those people who wished to dishonour Revelation, not only not to listen to it themselves but also to talk loudly and insolently when it was being read, so that even the true listeners may not be able to hear. They used to think that they were drowning the Voice of Allah in fact, they were piling up misery for themselves, for Allah's Voice can never be silenced, "And those who disbelieve say:

"Listen not to this Qur’an and make noise in the midst of its (recitation) that you may overcome." [Al-Qur'an 41:26].

When the unspeakably fascinating Words of Allah came into direct contact with their hearts, they were entranced and got oblivious of the materialistic world around them and were caught in a state of full attentiveness to the Divine Words to such an extent that when the Prophet [pbuh] reached the stormy heart-beating ending:

"So fall you down in prostration to Allah and worship Him (Alone)." [Al-Qur'an 53:62]

The idolaters, unconsciously and with full compliance, prostrated themselves in absolute god-fearing and stainless devotion. It was in fact the wonderful moment of the Truth that cleaved through the obdurate souls of the haughty and the attitude of the scoffers. They stood aghast when they perceived that Allah's Words had conquered their hearts and done the same thing that they had been trying hard to annihilate and exterminate. Their co-polytheists who had not been present on the scene reproached and blamed them severely; consequently they began to fabricate lies and calumniate the Prophet [pbuh] alleging that he had attached to their idols great veneration and ascribed to them the power of desirable intercession. All of these were desperate attempts made to establish an excusable justification for their prostrating themselves with the Prophet [pbuh] on that day. Of course, this foolish and iniquitous slanderous behaviour was in line with their life-consecrated practice of telling lies and plot hatching.

News of this incident was misreported to the Muslim emigrants in Abyssinia (Ethiopia). They were informed that the whole of Quraish had embraced Islam so they made their way back home. They arrived in Makkah in Shawwal of the same year. When they were only an hour’s travel from Makkah, the reality of the situation was discovered. Some of them returned to Abyssinia (Ethiopia), others sneaked secretly into the city or went in publicly but under the tutelage of a local notable. However, due to the news that transpired to the Makkans about the good hospitality and warm welcome that the Muslims were accorded in Abyssinia (Ethiopia), the polytheists got terribly indignant and started to mete out severer and more horrible maltreatment and tortures to the Muslims. Thereupon the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] deemed it imperative to permit the helpless creatures to seek asylum in Abyssinia (Ethiopia) for the second time. Migration this time was not as easy as it was the previous time, for Quraish was on the alert to the least suspicious moves of the Muslims. In due course, however, the Muslims managed their affairs too fast for the Quraish*tes to thwart their attempt of escape. The group of emigrants this time comprised eighty three men and nineteen or, in some versions, eighteen women. Whether or not ‘Ammar was included is still a matter of doubt. [Tafheem-ul-Qur'an 5/188; Za'd Al-Ma'ad 1/24; Ibn Hisham 1/364; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/61]

 

Quraish’s Machination against the Emigrants

Quraish could not tolerate the prospect of a secure haven available for the Muslims in Abyssinia (Ethiopia), so they despatched two staunch envoys to demand their extradition. They were ‘Amr bin Al-‘As and ‘Abdullah bin Abi Rabi‘a — before embracing Islam. They had taken with them valuable gifts to the king and his clergy, and had been able to win some of the courtiers over to their side. The pagan envoys claimed that the Muslim refugees should be expelled from Abyssinia (Ethiopia) and made over to them, on the ground that they had abandoned the religion of their forefathers, and their leader was preaching a religion different from theirs and from that of the king.

The king summoned the Muslims to the court and asked them to explain the teachings of their religion. The Muslim emigrants had decided to tell the whole truth whatever the consequences were. Ja‘far bin Abi Talib stood up and addressed the king in the following words: "O king! we were plunged in the depth of ignorance and barbarism; we adored idols, we lived in unchastity, we ate the dead bodies, and we spoke abominations, we disregarded every feeling of humanity, and the duties of hospitality and neighbourhood were neglected; we knew no law but that of the strong, when Allah raised among us a man, of whose birth, truthfulness, honesty, and purity we were aware; and he called to the Oneness of Allah and taught us not to associate anything with Him. He forbade us the worship of idols; and he enjoined us to speak the truth, to be faithful to our trusts, to be merciful and to regard the rights of the neighbours and kith and kin; he forbade us to speak evil of women, or to eat the substance of orphans; he ordered us to fly from the vices, and to abstain from evil; to offer prayers, to render alms, and to observe fast. We have believed in him, we have accepted his teachings and his injunctions to worship Allah and not to associate anything with Him, and we have allowed what He has allowed, and prohibited what He has prohibited. For this reason, our people have risen against us, have persecuted us in order to make us forsake the worship of Allah and return to the worship of idols and other abominations. They have tortured and injured us, until finding no safety among them, we have come to your country, and hope you will protect us from oppression."

The king was very much impressed by these words and asked the Muslims to recite some of Allag;s Revelation. Ja‘far recited the opening verses of Surah Maryam (Chapter 19 — Mary) wherein is told the story of the birth of both John and Jesus Christ, down to the account of Mary having been fed with the food miraculously. Thereupon the king, along with the bishops of his realm, was moved to tears that rolled down his cheeks and even wet his beard. Here, the Negus exclaimed: "It seems as if these words and those which were revealed to Jesus are the rays of the light which have radiated from the same source." Turning to the crest-fallen envoys of Quraish, he said, "I am afraid, I cannot give you back these refugees. They are free to live and worship in my realm as they please."

On the morrow, the two envoys again went to the king and said that Muhammad [pbuh] and his followers blasphemed Jesus Christ. Again the Muslims were summoned and asked what they thought of Jesus. Ja‘far again stood up and replied: "We speak about Jesus as we have been taught by our Prophet [pbuh] , that is, he is the servant of Allah His Messenger, His spirit and His Word breathed into Virgin Mary." The king at once remarked, "Even so do we believe. Blessed be you, and blessed be your master." Then turning to the frowning envoys and to his bishops who got angry, he said: "You may fret and fume as you like but Jesus is nothing more than what Ja‘far has said about him." He then assured the Muslims of full protection. He returned to the envoys of Quraish, the gifts they had brought with them and sent them away. The Muslims lived in Abyssinia (Ethiopia) unmolested for a number of years till they returned to Madinah. [Ibn Hisham 1/334-338]

In this way Quraish’s malicious intentions recoiled on them and their machination met with utter failure. They came to fully realize that the grudge they nursed against he Muslims would not operate but within their realm of Makkah. They consequently began to entertain a horrible idea of silencing the advocate of the new Call once and for all, through various channels of brutality, or else killing him. An obstinate difficulty, however, used to curtail any move in this direction embodied by the Prophet’s uncle Abu Talib and the powerful social standing he used to enjoy as well as the full protection and support he used to lend to his nephew. The pagans of Makkah therefore decided to approach Abu Talib for the second time and insisted that he put a stop to his nephew’s activities, which if allowed unchecked, they said, would involve him into severe hostility. Abu Talib was deeply distressed at this open threat and the breach with his people and their enmity, but he could not afford to desert the Messenger too. He sent for his nephew and told him what the people had said, "Spare me and yourself and put not burden on me that I can’t bear." Upon this the Prophet [pbuh] thought that his uncle would let him down and would no longer support him, so he replied:

"O my uncle! by Allah if they put the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left on condition that I abandon this course, until Allah has made me victorious, or I perish therein, I would not abandon it." The Prophet [pbuh] got up, and as he turned away, his uncle called him and said, "Come back, my nephew," and when he came back, he said, "Go and preach what you please, for by Allah I will never forsake you."

He then recited two lines of verse pregnant with meanings of full support to the Prophet [pbuh] and absolute gratification by the course that his nephew had chalked out in Arabia. [Ibn Hisham 1/265]

 

Say: (O Muhammad) If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, MercifuL
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Quote fatima Replybullet Posted: 10 October 2006 at 8:24am

Once more Quraish approaches Abu Talib

Quraish, seeing that the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] was still intent on his Call, realized that Abu Talib would never forsake his nephew even if this incurred their enmity. Some of them then went to see him once more taking with them a youth called ‘Amarah bin Al-Waleed bin Al-Mugheerah, and said, "O Abu Talib! we have brought you a smart boy still in the bloom of his youth, to make use of his mind and strength and take him as your son in exchange for your nephew, who has run counter to your religion, brought about social discord, found fault with your way of life, so that we kill him and rid you of his endless troubles; just man for man." Abu Talib’s reply was, "It is really an unfair bargain. You give me your son to bring him up and I give you my son to kill him! By Allah it is something incredible!!" Al-Mut‘im bin ‘Adi, a member of the delegation, interrupted saying that Quraish had been fair in that bargain because "they meant only to rid you of that source of hateful trouble, but as I see you are determined to refuse their favours." Abu Talib, of course, turned down all their offers and challenged them to do whatever they pleased.[Ibn Hisham 1/266] Historical resources do not give the exact date of these two meetings with Abu Talib. They, however, seem more likely to have taken place in the sixth year of Prophethood with a brief lapse of time in between.

 

The Tyrants’ Decision to kill the Prophet [pbuh]

Now that all the schemes and conspiracies of Quraish had failed, they resorted to their old practices of persecution and inflicting tortures on the Muslims in a more serious and brutal manner than ever before. They also began to nurse the idea of killing the Prophet [pbuh] . In fact, contrary to their expectations, this new method and this very idea served indirectly to consolidate the Call to Islam and support it with the conversion of two staunch and mighty heroes of Makkah, i.e. Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib and ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab[R] .

‘Utaibah bin Abi Lahab once approached the Prophet [pbuh] and most defiantly and brazenly shouted at him, "I disbelieve in: "By the star when it goes down." [53:1] and in "Then he (Gabriel) approached and came closer." [53:8] In other words: "I do not believe in any of the Qur’an" He then started to deal highhandedly with Muhammad [pbuh] and laid violent hand on him, tore his shirt and spat into his face but his saliva missed the Holy face of the Prophet [pbuh] . Thereupon, the Prophet [pbuh] invoked Allah's wrath on ‘Utaibah and supplicated:

"O Allah Set one of Your dogs on him."

Allah responded positively to Muhammad’s supplication, and it happened in the following manner: Once ‘Utaibah with some of his compatriots from Quraish set out for Syria and took accommodation in Az-Zarqa’. There a lion approached the group to the great fear of ‘Utbah, who at once recalled Muhammad’s words in supplication, and said: "Woe to my brother! This lion will surely devour me just as Muhammad [pbuh] supplicated. He has really killed me in Syria while he is in Makkah." The lion did really rush like lightning, snatched ‘Utbah from amongst his people and crushed his head. [Tafheem-ul-Qur'an 6/522; Quoted from Al-Isti'ab, Al-Isaba, Dala'il An-Nubuwwah, etc]

It is also reported that a wretched idolater from Quraish, named ‘Uqbah bin ‘Abi Mu‘ait once trod on the Prophet’s neck while he was prostrating himself in prayer until his eyes protruded. [Mukhtasar Seerat Ar-Rasool p.113]

More details reported by Ibn Ishaq testify to the tyrants’ deeply-established intentions of killing the Prophet [pbuh] . Abu Jahl, the archenemy of Islam, once addressed some of his accomplices: "O people of Quraish! It seems that Muhammad [pbuh] is determined to go on finding fault with our religion, degrading our forefathers, discrediting our way of life and abusing our gods. I bear witness to our god that I will carry a too heavy rock and drop it on Muhammad’s head while he is in prostration to rid you of him, once and for all. I am not afraid of whatever his sept, Banu ‘Abd Munaf, might do." The terrible unfortunate audience endorsed his plan and encouraged him to translate it into a decisive deed.

In the morning of the following day, Abu Jahl lay waiting for the arrival of the Messenger of Allah[pbuh] to offer prayer. The people of Quraish were in their assembly rooms waiting for news. When the Prophet [pbuh] prostrated himself, Abu Jahl proceeded carrying the big rock to fulfill his wicked intention. No sooner had he approached closer to the Prophet [pbuh] than he withdraw pale-faced, shuddering with his hands strained the rock falling off. Thereupon, the people watching hurried forward asking him what the matter was. He replied: "When I approached, a male-camel unusual in figure with fearful canines intercepted and almost devoured me." Ibn Ishaq reported that the Prophet [pbuh], in the context of his comment on the incident, said "It was Gabriel[AWS] , if Abu Jahl had approached closer, he would have killed him.[Ibn Hisham 1/298]" Even so the tyrants of Quraish would not be admonished, contrariwise, the idea of killing the Prophet [pbuh] was still being nourished in their iniquitous hearts. On the authority of ‘Abdullah bin ‘Amr bin Al-‘As, some people of Quraish were in a place called Al-Hijr complaining that they had been too patient with the Prophet [pbuh] , who suddenly appeared and began his usual circumambulation. They started to wink at him and utter sarcastic remarks but he remained silent for two times, then on the third, he stopped and addressed the infidels saying:

"O people of Quraish! Hearken, I swear by Allah in Whose Hand is my soul, that you will one day be slaughtered to pieces." As soon as the Prophet [pbuh] uttered his word of slaughter, they all stood aghast and switched off to a new style of language smacking of fear and even horror trying to soothe his anger and comfort him saying: "You can leave Abul Qasim, for you have never been foolish." [Ibn Hisham 1/289]

‘Urwa bin Az-Zubair narrated: I asked Abdullah bin ‘Amr bin Al-‘As to tell me of the worst thing that the pagans did to the Prophet [pbuh] . He said: "While the Prophet [pbuh] was praying in Al-Hijr of Al-Ka‘bah, ‘Uqbah bin Al-Mu‘ait came and put his garment around the Prophet’s neck and throttled him violently. Abu Bakr came and caught him by his shoulder and pushed him away from the Prophet [pbuh] and said: "Do you want to kill a man just because he says, My Lord is Allah" [Bukhari 1/544]

 

The Conversion of Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib

In a gloomy atmosphere infested with dark clouds of iniquity and tyranny, there shone on the horizon a promising light for the oppressed, i.e. the conversion of Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib in Dhul Hijjah, the sixth year of Prophethood. It is recorded that the Prophet [pbuh] was one day seated on the hillock of Safa when Abu Jahl happened to pass by and accused the religion preached by him. Muhammad [pbuh] , however, kept silent and did not utter a single word. Abu Jahl went on unchecked, took a stone and cracked the Prophet’s head which began to bleed. The aggressor then went to join the Quraish*tes in their assembly place. It so happened that shortly after that, Hamzah, while returning from a hunting expedition, passed by the same way, his bow hanging by his shoulder. A slave-girl belonging to ‘Abdullah bin Jada‘an, who had noted the impertinence of Abu Jahl, told him the whole story of the attack on the Prophet [pbuh] . On hearing that, Hamzah was deeply offended and hurried to Al-Ka‘bah and there, in the courtyard of the Holy Sanctuary, found Abu Jahl sitting with a company of Quraish*tes. Hamzah rushed upon him and struck his bow upon his head violently and said: "Ah! You have been abusing Muhammad [pbuh] ; I too follow his religion and profess what he preaches." The men of Bani Makhzum came to his help, and men of Bani Hashim wanted to render help, but Abu Jahl sent them away saying: "Let Abu ‘Ummarah alone, by Allah I did revile his nephew shamelessly.[Ibn Hisham 1/291; Rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/68; Mukhtasar Seerat Ar-Rasool p.66]" In fact, Hamzah’s conversion derived initially from the pride of a man who would not accept the notion of others humiliating his relative. Later on, however, Allah purified his nature and he managed to grasp the most trustworthy hand-hold (Faith in Allah. He proved to be a source of great strength to the Islamic Faith and its followers. [Mushtasar Seerat Ar-Rasool p.101]

 

The Conversion of ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab

Another significant addition to the strength of Islam was the conversion of ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab in Dhul-Hijjah, the sixth year of Prophethood, three days following the conversion of Hamzah.[Tareekh 'Umar bin Al-Kattab, p.11] He was a man of dauntless courage and resolution, feared and respected in Makkah, and hitherto a bitter opponent of the new religion. The traditional account reveals that the Prophet [pbuh] once raised his hands in prayer and said:

"O Allah Give strength to Islam especially through either of two men you love more: ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab or Abu Jahl bin Hisham."

‘Umar, obviously, was the one who merited that privilege. [At-Tirmidhi 2/209]

When we scrutinize the several versions that speak of ‘Umar’s conversion, we can safely conclude that various contradictory emotions used to conflict with one another within his soul. On the one hand, he used to highly regard the traditions of his people, and was habituated to the practice of indulgence in wine orgies; on the other hand, he greatly admired the stamina of the Muslims and their relentless dedication to their faith. These two extreme views created a sort of skepticism in his mind and made him at times tend to believe that the doctrines of Islam could bear better and more sacred seeds of life, that is why he would always experience fits of outrage directly followed by unexpected enervation.[Fiqh As-Seerah, p92,93] On the whole, the account of his conversion is very interesting and requires us to go into some details.

One day, ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab set out from his house, and headed for the Holy Sanctuary where he saw the Prophet [pbuh] offering prayer and overheard him reciting the Surah Al-Haqqah (Chapter 69 — The Reality) of the Noble Qur’an The Words of Allah appealed to him and touched the innermost cells of his heart. He felt that they derived from unusual composition, and he began to question his people’s allegations as regards the man-composed poetry or words of a soothsayer that they used to attach to the Noble Qur’an The Prophet [pbuh] went on to recite:

"That this is verily the word of an honoured Messenger (i.e. Gabriel or Muhammad [pbuh] which he has brought from Allah. It is not the word of a poet, little is that you believe! Nor is it the word of a soothsayer (or a foreteller), little is that you remember! This is the Revelation sent down from the Lord of the ‘Alamin (mankind, jinns and all that exists)." [Al-Qur'an 69:40-43]

At that very moment, Islam permeated his heart.[Tareekh 'Umar bin Al-Khattab p.6] However, the dark layer of pre-Islamic tendencies, the deep-seated traditional bigotry as well as the blind pride in his forefathers overshadowed the essence of the great Truth that began to feel its way reluctantly into his heart. He, therefore, persisted in his atrocities against Islam and its adherents unmindful of the pure and true-to-man’s nature feeling that lay behind that fragile cover of pre-Islamic ignorance and mentality. His sharp temper and excessive enmity towards the Prophet [pbuh] led him one day to leave his house, sword in hand, with the intention of killing the Prophet [pbuh] . He was in a fit of anger and was fretting and fuming. Nu‘aim bin ‘Abdullah, a friend of ‘Umar’s, met him accidentally half way. What had caused so much excitement in him and on whom was the fury to burst, he inquired casually. ‘Umar said furiously: "To destroy the man Muhammad ([pbuh]) this apostate, who has shattered the unity of Quraish, picked holes in their religion, found folly with their wise men and blasphemed their gods." "‘Umar, I am sure, your soul has deceived you, do you think that Banu ‘Abd Munaf would let you walk on earth if you slain Muhammad [pbuh]? Why don’t you take care of your own family first and set them right?"

"Which of the folk of my house?" asked ‘Umar angrily. "Your brother-in-law and your sister have apostatized (meaning to say: They have become followers of Muhammad [pbuh]) and abandoned your religion."

‘Umar directed his footsteps to his sister’s house. As he drew near, he heard the voice of Khabbab bin Aratt, who was reading the Qur’anic Chapter TaaHaa (mystic letters, T. H.) to both of them. Khabbab, perceiving the noise of his footsteps retired to a closet. Fatimah, ‘Umar’s sister, took hold of the leaf and hid it. But ‘Umar had already heard the voice. "What sound was that I have heard just now?" shouted the son of Khattab, entering angrily. Both his sister and her husband replied, "You heard nothing." "Nay," said he swearing fiercely, "I have heard that you have apostatized." He plunged forward towards his brother-in-law and beat him severely, but Fatimah rushed to the rescue of her husband. Thereupon, ‘Umar fell upon his sister and struck upon her head. The husband and wife could not contain themselves and cried aloud: "Yes, we are Muslims, we believe in Allah and His Messenger Muhammad [pbuh] so do what you will." When ‘Umar saw the face of his dear sister besmeared with blood, he was softened and said: "Let me see what you were reading, so that I may see what Muhammad [pbuh] has brought." Fatimah was satisfied with the assurance, but said: "O brother, you are unclean on account of your idolatry, none but the pure may touch it. So go and wash first." He did so, and took the page and read the opening verses of the Chapter TaaHaa until he reached:

"Verily! I am Allah Lailaha illa Ana (none has the right to be worshipped but I), so worship Me and offer prayers perfectly (Iqamat-as-Salah), for My Remembrance." [Al-Qur'an 20:14].

‘Umar read the verses with great interest and was much entranced with them. "How excellent it is, and how graceful! Please guide me to Muhammad [pbuh] ." said he. And when he heard that, Khabbab came out of concealment and said, "O ‘Umar, I hope that Allah has answered the prayer of the Prophet [pbuh] , for I heard him say: ‘O Allah Strengthen Islam through either ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab or Abu Jahl bin Hisham.’" ‘Umar then left for a house in Safa where Muhammad [pbuh] had been holding secret meetings along with his Companions. ‘Umar reached that place with the sword swinging by his arm. He knocked at the door. The Companions of the Prophet [pbuh] turned to see who the intruder was. One of them peeped through a chink in the door and reeled back exclaiming: "It is ‘Umar with his sword." Hamzah, dispelling the fears of his friends, said: "Let him in. As a friend he is welcome. As a foe, he will have his head cut off with his own sword." The Prophet [pbuh] asked his Companions to open the door. In came the son of Khattab. The Prophet [pbuh] advanced to receive the dreadful visitor, caught him by his garment and scabbard, and asked him the reason of his visit. At that ‘Umar replied: "O Messenger of Allah[pbuh] , I come to you in order to believe in Allah and his Messenger and that which he has brought from his Lord." Filled with delight, Muhammad [pbuh] together with his Companions, cried aloud: ‘Allahu Akbar’ (Allah is Great). [Tareekh 'Umar bin Al-Khattab, p7-11; Ibn Hisham 1/343]

The conversion of ‘Umar was a real triumph for the cause of Islam. So great and instant was the effect of his conversion on the situation that the believers who had hitherto worshipped Allah within their four walls in secret now assembled and performed their rites of worship openly in the Holy Sanctuary itself. This raised their spirits, and dread and uneasiness began to seize Quraish.

Ibn Ishaq narrated on the authority of ‘Umar [R], "When I embraced Islam, I remembered the archenemy of Muhammad [pbuh] , i.e. Abu Jahl. I set out, and knocked at his door. When he came out to see me, I told him directly that I had embraced Islam. He immediately slammed the door repulsively denouncing my move as infamous and my face as ugly." In fact, ‘Umar’s conversion created a great deal of stir in Makkah that some people denounced him as an apostate, yet he would never waver in Faith, on the contrary, he persisted in his stance even at the peril of his life. The polytheists of Quraish marched towards his house with the intention of killing him. ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar [R] narrated: While ‘Umar was at home in a state of fear, there came Al-‘As bin Wa’il As-Sahmy Abu ‘Amr, wearing an embroidered cloak and a shirt having silk hems. He was from the tribe of Bani Sahm who were our allies during the pre-Islamic period of ignorance. Al-‘As said to ‘Umar: What’s wrong with you? He said: Your people claim that they will kill me if I become a Muslim. Al-‘As said: Nobody will harm you after I have given protection to you. So Al-‘As went out and met the people streaming in the whole valley. He said: Where are you going? They replied: We want son of Al-Khattab who has embraced Islam. Al-‘As said: There is no way for anybody to touch him. So the people retreated. [Bukhari 1/545; Ibn Hisham 1/349]

With respect to the Muslims in Makkah, ‘Umar’s conversion had a different tremendous impact. Mujahid, on the authority of Ibn Al-‘Abbas [R], related that he had asked ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab why he had been given the epithet of Al-Farouque (he who distinguishes truth from falsehood), he replied: After I had embraced Islam, I asked the Prophet [pbuh]: ‘Aren’t we on the right path here and Hereafter?’ The Prophet [pbuh] answered: ‘Of course you are! I swear by Allah in Whose Hand my soul is, that you are right in this world and in the hereafter.’ I, therefore, asked the Prophet [pbuh] ‘Why we then had to conduct clandestine activism. I swear by Allah Who has sent you with the Truth, that we will leave our concealment and proclaim our noble cause publicly.’ We then went out in two groups, Hamzah leading one and I the other. We headed for the Mosque in broad daylight when the polytheists of Quraish saw us, their faces went pale and got incredibly depressed and resentful. On that very occasion, the Prophet [pbuh] attached to me the epithet of Al-Farouque. Ibn Mas‘ud [R] related that they (the Muslims) had never been able to observe their religious rites inside the Holy Sanctuary except when ‘Umar embraced Islam. [Ibn Hisham; Tareekh 'Umar bin Al-Khattab, p.13; Mukhtasar As-Seerah p.103]

Suhaib bin Sinan [R], in the same context, said that it was only after ‘Umar’s conversion, that we started to proclaim our Call, assemble around and circumambulate the Sacred House freely. We even dared retaliate against some of the injustices done to harm us. In the same context, Ibn Mas‘ud said: We have been strengthened a lot since ‘Umar embraced Islam.

 

Quraish’s Representative negotiates with the Messenger of Allah [pbuh]

Shortly after the conversion of these two powerful heroes, Hamzah bin ‘Abdul-Muttalib and ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab[R] , the clouds of tyranny and oppression started to clear away and the polytheists realized that it was no use meting out torture to the Muslims. They consequently began to direct their campaign to a different course. The authentic records of the biography of the Prophet [pbuh] show that it had occurred to the Makkan leaders to credit Muhammad [pbuh] with ambition. They, therefore, time and again plied him with temptation. One day some of the important men of Makkah gathered in the enclosure of Al-Ka‘bah, and ‘Utbah bin Rabi‘a, a chief among them, offered to approach the Prophet [pbuh] and contract a bargain with him whereby they give him whatever worldly wealth he asks for, on condition that he keep silent and no longer proclaim his new faith. The people of Quraish endorsed his proposal and requested him to undertake that task. ‘Utbah came closer to Muhammad [pbuh] and addressed him in the following words:

We have seen no other man of Arabia, who has brought so great a calamity to a nation, as you have done. You have outraged our gods and religion and taxed our forefathers and wise men with impiety and error and created strife amongst us. You have left no stone unturned to estrange the relations with us. If you are doing all this with a view to getting wealth, we will join together to give you greater riches than any Quraish*te has possessed. If ambition moves you, we will make you our chief. If you desire kingship we will readily offer you that. If you are under the power of an evil spirit which seems to haunt and dominate you so that you cannot shake off its yoke, then we shall call in skilful physicians to cure you.

"Have you said all?" asked Muhammad [pbuh]; and then hearing that all had been said, he spoke forth, and said:

"In the Name of Allah the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful. Haamiim. [These letters are one of the miracles of the Qur’an and none but Allah(Alone) knows their meanings]. A revelation from Allah the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful. A Book whereof the verses are explained in detail; — a Qur’an in Arabic for people who know. Giving glad tidings [of Paradise to the one who believes in the Oneness of Allah(i.e. Islamic Monotheism) and fears Allah much (abstains from all kinds of sins and evil deeds.) and loves Allah much (performing all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained)], and warning (of punishment in the Hell-fire to the one who disbelieves in the Oneness of Allah, but most of them turn away, so they listen not. And they say: Our hearts are under coverings (screened) from that to which you invite us …" [Al-Qur'an 41: 1-5]

The Messenger of Allah[pbuh] went on reciting the Chapter while ‘Utbah sitting and listening attentively with his hand behind his back to support him. When the Messenger reached the verse that required prostration, he immediately prostrated himself. After that, he turned to ‘Utbah saying: "Well Abu Al-Waleed! You have heard my reply, you are now free to do whatever you please." ‘Utbah then retired to his company to apprise them of the Prophet’s attitude. When his compatriots saw him, they swore that he had returned to them with a countenance unlike the one he had before meeting the Prophet [pbuh] . He immediately communicated to them the details of the talk he gave and the reply he received, and appended saying: "I have never heard words similar to those ones he recited. They definitely relate neither to poetry nor to witchcraft nor do they derive from soothsaying. O people of Quraish! I request you to heed my advice and grant the man full freedom to pursue his goals, in which case you could safely detach yourselves from him. I swear that his words bear a supreme Message. Should the other Arabs rid you of him, they will then spare you the trouble, on the other hand if he accedes to power over the Arabs, then you will bask in his kingship and share him his might." These words of course fell on deaf ears, and did not appeal to the infidels, who jeered at ‘Utbah and claimed that the Prophet [pbuh] had bewitched him. [Ibn Hisham 1/293,294]

In another version of the same event, it is related that ‘Utbah went on attentively listening to the Prophet [pbuh] until the latter began to recite Allah's Words:

"But if they turn away, they say (O Muhammad [pbuh] ): "I have warned you of a Sa‘iqa (a destructive awful cry, torment, hit, a thunder-bolt) like the Sa‘iqa which overtook ‘Ad and Tham?eople)." [Al-Qur'an 41:13]

Here ‘Utbah stood up panicked and stunned putting his hand on the Prophet’s mouth beseeching him: "I beg you in the Name of Allah and uterine ties to stop lest the calamity should befall the people of Quraish." He then hurriedly returned to his compatriots and informed them of what he had heard. [Tafseer Ibn Kathir 6/159-161]

 

Abu Talib assembles Bani Hashim and Bani Al-Muttalib

The new and welcome changes notwithstanding, Abu Talib still had a deep sensation of fear over his nephew. He deliberated on the previous series of incidents including the barter affair of ‘Amarah bin Al-Waleed, Abu Jahl’s rock, ‘Uqbah’s attempt to choke the Prophet [pbuh] , and finally ‘Umar’s (before conversion) intention to kill Muhammad [pbuh] . The wise man understood that all of these unequivocally smacked of a serious plot being hatched to disregard his status as a custodian of the Prophet [pbuh] , and kill the latter publicly. In the event of such a thing, Abu Talib deeply believed, neither ‘Umar nor Hamzah would be of any avail, socially powerful though they were. [Ibn Hisham 1/269; Mukhtasar Seerat Ar-Rasool p.106]

Abu Talib was right. The polytheists had laid a carefully-studied plan to kill the Prophet [pbuh] , and banded together to put their plan into effect. He, therefore, assembled his kinsfolk of Bani Hashim and Bani Al-Muttalib, sons of ‘Abd Munaf and exhorted them to immunize and defend his nephew. All of them, whether believers or disbelievers, responded positively except his brother Abu Lahab, who sided with the idolaters.

 

 
Say: (O Muhammad) If you love Allah, then follow me, Allah will love you and forgive you your faults, and Allah is Forgiving, MercifuL
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