Stories Of The Prophets


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  • Stories Of The Prophets



  • Prophet Muhammad

    Description of
    Muhammad

    Muhammad (pbuh) was born in Mecca ( Makkah), Arabia, on
    Monday, 12 Rabi' Al-Awal (2 August A.D. 570). His mother, Aminah, was
    the daughter of Wahb Ibn Abdu Manaf of the Zahrah family. His father,
    'Abdullah, was the son of Abdul Muttalib. His genealogy has been traced
    to the noble house of Ishmael, the son of Prophet Abraham in about the
    fortieth descend. Muhammad's father died before his birth.

    Before he was six years old his mother died, and the
    doubly orphaned Muhammad was put under the charge of his grandfather
    Abdul Muttalib who took the most tender care of him. But the old chief
    died two years afterwards. On his deathbed he confided to his son Abu
    Talib the charge of the little orphan.

    Journey to Busra -
    Christian Monk merits Muhammad

    When Muhammad was twelve years old, he accompanied his
    uncle Abu Talib on a mercantile journey to Syria, and they proceeded as
    far as Busra. The journey lasted for some months. It was at Busra that
    the Christian monk Bahira met Muhammad. He is related to have said to
    Abu Talib: 'Return with this boy and guard him against the hatred of
    the Jews, for a great career awaits your nephew."

    Muhammad's honest and
    honorable character

    After this journey, the youth of Muhammad seems to have
    been passed uneventfully, but all authorities agree in ascribing to him
    such correctness of manners and purity of morals as were rare among the
    people of Mecca. The fair character and the honorable bearing of the
    unobtrusive youth won the approbation of the citizens of Mecca, and b y
    common consent he received the title of "Al Ameen," The Faithful.

    In his early years, Muhammad was not free from the
    cares of life. He had to watch the flocks of his uncle, who, like the
    rest of the Bani Hashim, had lost the greater part of his wealth.

    Solitary lifestyle of
    Muhammad's youth

    From youth to manhood he led an almost solitary life.
    The lawlessness rife among the Meccans, the sudden outbursts of
    causeless and bloody quarrels among the tribes frequenting the Fair of
    Okadh (The Arabian Olympia), and the immorality and skepticism of the
    Quraish, naturally caused feelings of pity and sorrow in the heart of
    the sensitive youth. Such scenes of social misery and religious
    degradation were characteristic of a depraved age.

    Muhammad's marriage to Khadijah

    When Muhammad was twenty five years old, he traveled
    once more to Syria as a factor of a noble and rich Quraishi widow named
    Khadijah; and, having proved himself faithful in the commercial
    interests of that lady, he was soon rewarded with her hand in marriage.
    This marriage proved fortunate and singularly happy. Khadijah was much
    the senior of her husband, but in spite of the disparity of age between
    them, the most tender devotion on both sides existed. This marriage
    gave him the loving heart of a woman who was ever ready to console him
    in his despair and to keep alive within him the feeble, flickering
    flame of hope when no man believed in him and the world appeared gloomy
    in his eyes.

    Troubled, lawless
    times for the Makkans

    Until he reached thirty years of age, Muhammad was
    almost a stranger to the outside world. Since the death of his
    grandfather, authority in Mecca was divided among the ten senators who
    constituted the governing body of the Arabian Commonwealth. There was
    no such accord among them as to ensure the safety of individual rights
    and property. Though family relations afforded some degree of
    protection to citizens, yet strangers were frequently exposed to
    persecution and oppression. In many cases they were robbed, not only of
    their goods, but even of their wives and daughters. At the instigation
    of the faithful Muhammad, an old league called the Federation of Fudul,
    i.e., favors was revived with the object of repressing lawlessness and
    defending every weak individual - whether Meccan or stranger, free or
    slave - against any wrong or oppression to which he might be the victim
    within the territories of Mecca.

    When Muhammad reached thirty-five years, he settled by
    his judgment a grave dispute, which threatened to plunge the whole of
    Arabia into a fresh series of her oft-recurring wars. In rebuilding the
    Sacred House of the Ka'ba in A.D. 605, the question arose as to who
    should have the honor of raising the black stone, the most holy relic
    of that House, into its proper place. Each tribe claimed that honor.
    The senior citizen advised the disputants to accept for their
    arbitrator the first man to enter from a certain gate. The proposal was
    agreed upon, and the first man who entered the gate was Muhammad
    "Al-Ameen." His advice satisfied all the contending parties. He ordered
    the stone to be placed on a piece of cloth and each tribe to share the
    honor of lifting it up by taking hold of a part of the cloth. The stone
    was thus deposited in its place, and the rebuilding of the House was
    completed without further interruption.

    Muhammad thwarts
    intention of the Romans to control Makka

    It is related that, about this time, a certain Usman,
    Ibn Huwairith, supported by Byzantine gold, made an attempt to convert
    the territory of Hijaz into a Roman dependency, but the attempt failed,
    chiefly through the instrumentality of Muhammad.

    Kindness and
    generousity shown to the people

    These are nearly all the public acts related by
    historians in which Muhammad took part in the first fifteen years of
    his marriage to Khadijah. As for his private life he is described to
    have been ever helpful to the needy and the helpless. His uncle Abu
    Talib had fallen into distress through his endeavors to maintain the
    old position of his family. Muhammad, being rather rich at this time by
    his alliance with Khadijah, tried to discharge part of the debt of
    gratitude and obligation which he owed to his uncle by undertaking the
    bringing up and education of his son 'Ali. A year later he adopted
    'Akil, another of his uncle's sons.

    Khadijah bore Muhammad three sons and four daughters.
    All the males died in childhood, but in loving 'Ali he found much
    consolation.

    About this time, Muhammad set a good example of
    kindness, which created a salutary effect upon his people. His wife
    Khadijah had made him a present of young slave named Zaid Ibn Haritha,
    who had been brought as a captive to Mecca and sold to Khadijah. When
    Haritha heard that Muhammad possessed Zaid, he came to Mecca and
    offered a large sum for his ransom. Whereupon Muhammd said: "Let Zaid
    come here, and if he chooses to go with you, take him without ransom;
    but if it be his choice to stay with me, why should I not keep him?'
    Zaid, being brought into Muhammad's presence, declared that he would
    stay with his master, who treated him as if he was his only son.
    Muhammad no sooner heard this than he took Zaid by the hand and led him
    to the black stone of Ka'ba, where he publicly adopted him as his son,
    to which the father acquiesced and returned home well satisfied.
    Henceforward Zaid was called the son of Muhammad.

    Muhammd was now approaching his fortieth year, and his
    mind was ever-engaged in profound contemplation and reflection. Before
    him lay his country, bleeding and torn by fratricidal wars and
    intolerable dissension's; his people, sunk in barbarism, addicted to
    the observation of rites and superstitions, were, with all their desert
    virtues, lawless and cruel. His two visits to Syria had opened to him a
    scene of unutterable moral and social desolation, rival creeds and
    sects tearing each other to pieces, carrying their hatred to the
    valleys and deserts of Hijaz, and rending the townships of Arabia with
    their quarrels and bitterness.

    Allah's Divine
    Inspiration touches Muhammad

    For years after his marriage, Muhammad had been
    accustomed to secluding himself in a cave in Mount Hira, a few miles
    from Mecca. To this cave he used to go for prayer and meditation,
    sometimes alone and sometime with his family. There, he often spent the
    whole nights in deep thought and profound communion with the Unseen yet
    All-Knowing Allah of the Universe. It was during one of those
    retirements and in the still hours of the night, when no human sympathy
    was near, that an angel came to him to tell him that he was the
    Messenger of Allah sent to reclaim a fallen people to the knowledge and
    service of their Lord.

    Renowned compilers of authentic traditions of Islam
    agree on the following account of the first revelations received by the
    Prophet.

    Muhammad would seclude himself in the cave of Mount
    Hira and worship three days and nights. He would, whenever he wished,
    return to his family at Mecca and then go back again, taking wihim the
    necessities of life. Thus he continued to return to Khadijah from time
    to time until one day the revelation came down to him and the Angel
    Gabriel (Jibreel) appeared to him and said:

    "Read!"

     But as Muhammad was
    illiterate, having never received any instruction in reading or
    writing, he said to the angel:

    "I am not a reader."

    The angel took a
    hold of him and squeezed him as much as he could bear, and then said
    again:

    "Read!"

     Then Prophet said:

    "I am not a reader."

    The Angel again
    seized the Prophet and squeezed him and said:

    "Read! In the Name of
    Your Lord, Who has created (all that exists), has created a man from a
    clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood). Read! And your Lord is the
    Most Generous, Who has taught (the writing) by the pen, has taught man
    that which he knew not." (Ch 96:1-4 Quran).

    Then the Prophet repeated the words with a trembling
    heart. He returned to Khadijah from Mount Hira and said: "Wrap me up!
    Wrap me up!" She wrapped him in a garment until his fear was dispelled.
    He told Khadijah what had occurred and that he was becoming either a
    soothsayer or one smitten with madness. She replied: "Allah forbid! He
    will surely not let such a thing happen, for you speak the truth, you
    are faithful in trust, you bear the afflictions of the people, you
    spend in good works what you gain in trade, you are hospitable and you
    assist your fellow men. Have you seen anything terrible?" Muhammad
    replied: "Yes," and told her what he had seen. Whereupon, Khadijah
    said: "Rejoice, O dear husband and be cheerful. He is Whose hands
    stands Khadijah's life bears witness to the truth of this fact, that
    you will be the prophet to this people."

    Khadijah consults
    cousin knowledgeable of Scriptures; confirmation of Prophet

    After this experience Khadijah went to her
    cousin Waraqa Ibn Naufal, who was old and blind and who knew the
    Scriptures of the Jews and Christians, and is stated to have translated
    them into Arabic. When she told him of what she had heard, he cried
    out: "Holy! Holy! Verily, this is the Namus (The Holy Spirit) who came
    to Moses. He will be the prophet of his people. Tell him this and bid
    him to be brave at heart." When the two men met subsequently in the
    street, the blind old student of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures
    spoke of his faith and trust: "I swear by Him in Who hand Waraqa's life
    is, Allah has chosen you to be the prophet of this people. They will
    call you a liar, they will persecute you, they will banish you, and
    they will fight against you. Oh, that I could live to those days. I
    would fight for these." And he kissed him on the forehead.

    Muhammad's Visions and
    struggle to fight depression

    The first vision was followed by a considerable period,
    during which Muhammad suffered much mental depression. Only Almighty
    Allah knows what Muhammad must have been thinking and feeling at that
    time. He may have been worried about his visions, uncertain as to how
    the majority of the Makkans would treat Allah's blessing, since their
    own interests were at stake. The Makkans, at that time, relied heavily
    on trade that revolved around polytheistic and pagan rituals of false
    idols and statues and other things that they worshipped. One can't
    contemplate his future and responsibilities to the people of the world,
    as well as the challenges that Allah Almighty had chosen him for.

    Prophet rises to start
    his mission for Allah

    The angel spoke
    to the grieved heart of hope and trust and of the bright future when he
    would see the people of the earth crowding into the one true faith. His
    destiny was unfolded to him, when, wrapped in profound meditation,
    melancholy and sad, he felt himself called by a voice from heaven to
    arise and preach.

    "O you (Muhammad) enveloped (in garments)! Arise
    and warn! And your Lord (Allah) magnify!" (Ch 74:1-3 Quran)

    He
    arose and engaged himself in the work to which he was called. Khadijah
    was the first to accept his mission. She was to believe in the
    revelations, to abandon the idolatry of her people and to join him in
    purity of heart and in offering up prayers to Allah the Almighty.

    The Companions

    At the beginning of his mission, Muhammad - hereinafter
    called the Prophet - opened his soul only to those who were attached to
    him and tried to free them from the gross practices of their
    forefathers. After Khadijah, his cousin' Ali was the next companion.
    The Prophet used often to go into the desert around Mecca with his wife
    and young cousin that they might together offer their heart felt thanks
    to the Lord of all nations for His manifold blessings. Once they were
    surprised by Abu Talib, the father of 'Ali. He said to the Prophet: "O
    son of my brother, what is this religion you are following?" "It is the
    religion of Allah of His Angels, of His Messengers and of our ancestor
    Abraham," answered the Prophet. "Allah has sent me to His servants, to
    direct them towards the truth, and you, O my uncle, are the most worthy
    of all. It is meet that I should thus call upon you and it is meet that
    you should accept the truth and help in spreading it."

    Abu Talib replied: "Son of my brother, I cannot abjure
    the religion of my fathers; but by the Supreme Lord, while I am alive,
    none shall dare to injure you." Then turning towards 'Ali, the
    venerable chief asked what religion was his. Ali answered: "O father, I
    believe in Allah and His Prophet and go with him." Abu Talib replied:
    "Well my son, he will not call you to anything except what is good,
    therefore you are free to go with him."

    After 'Ali, Muhammad's adopted son Zaid became a
    convert to the new faith. He was followed by Abu Bakr, a leading member
    of the Quraish tribe and an honest, wealthy merchant who enjoyed great
    consideration among his compatriots. He was but two years younger than
    the Prophet. His adoption of the new faith was of great moral effect.
    Soon after, five notables presented themselves before the Prophet and
    accepted Islam. Several converts also came from lower classes of the
    Arabs to adopt the new religion.

    Proliferation of
    Islamic Knowledge by our Prophet

    For three weary long years, the Prophet labored very
    quietly to deliver his people from the worship of idols. Polytheism was
    deeply rooted among the people. It offered attractions, which the new
    faith in its purity did not possess. The Quraish had personal material
    interests in the old worship, and their prestige was dependent upon its
    maintenance. The Prophet had to contend with the idolatrous worship of
    its followers and to oppose the ruling oligarchy, which governed its
    destinies.

    After three years of constant but quiet struggle, only
    thirty followers were secured. An important change now occurred in the
    relations of the Prophet with the citizens of Mecca. His compatriots
    had begun to doubt his sanity, thinking him crazy or possessed by an
    evil spirit. Hitherto he preached quietly and unobtrusively. He now
    decided to appeal publicly to the Meccans, requesting them to abandon
    their idolatry. For this he arranged a gathering on a neighboring hill
    and there spoke to them of their folly in the sight of Allah in
    worshipping pieces of stone which they called their gods. He invited
    them to abandon their old impious worship and adopt the faith of love,
    truth and purity. He warned them of the fate that had overtaken past
    races who had not heeded the preaching of former prophets. But the
    gathering departed without listening to the warning given them by the
    Prophet.

    Having thus failed to induce his fellow citizens to
    listen to him, he turned his attention to the strangers arriving in the
    city on commerce or pilgrimage. But the Quraish made attempts to
    frustrate his efforts. They hastened themselves to meet the strangers
    first on different routes, to warn them against holding any
    communication with the Prophet, whom they represented as a dangerous
    magician. When the pilgrims or traders returned to their homes, they
    carried with them the news of the advent of the bold preacher who was
    inviting the Arabs loudly - at the risk of his own life - to abandon
    the worship of their dear idols.

    Persecution
    perpetrated by the Makkan Tribe of Quraish

    Now the Prophet and his followers became subject to
    some persecution and indignity. The hostile Quraish prevented the
    Prophet from offering his prayers at the Sacred House of the Ka'ba;
    they pursued him wherever he went; they covered him and his disciples
    with dirt and filth when engaged in their devotions; they scattered
    thorns in the places which he frequented for devotion and meditation.
    Amidst all these trials the Prophet did not waver. He was full of
    confidence in his mission, even when on several occasions he was put in
    imminent danger of losing his life.

    At this time Hamza, the youngest son of Abdul Muttalib,
    adopted Islam. Hamza was a man of distinguished bravery, an intrepid
    warrior, generous and true, whose heroism earned for him the title of
    the "Lion of Allah." He became a devoted adherent of Islam and everlost
    his life in the cause.

    The Prophet continued preaching to the Arabs in a most
    gentle and reasonable manner. He called thepeople, so accustomed to
    iniquity and wrong doings, to abandon their abominations. In burning
    words which excited the hearts of his hearers, he warned them of the
    punishment which Allah had inflicted upon the ancient tribes of 'Ad and
    Thamud who had obstinately disobeyed the teachings of Allah's
    messengers to them. He adjured them by the wonderful sights of nature,
    by the noon day brightness, by the night when it spreads its veil, by
    the day when it appears in glory to listen to his warning before a
    similar destruction befell them. He spoke to them of the Day of
    Reckoning, when their deeds in this world will be weighed before the
    Eternal Judge, when the children who had been buried alive will be
    asked for what crime they were put to death.

    Almighty Allah said:

    "Nay, they wonder that there
    has come to them a Warner (Muhammad) from among themselves. So the
    disbeliveers say: "This is a strange thing! When we are dead and have
    become dust (shall we be resurrected)? That is a far return." We know
    that which the earth takes of them (their dead bodies), and with Us is
    a Book preserved (i.e., the Book of Decrees).

    Nay, but, they have denied the truth (this Qur'an)
    when it has come to them, so they are in a confused state (can not
    differentiate between right and wrong). Have they not looked at the
    heaven above them, how We have made it and adorned it, and there are no
    rifts in it? And the earth! We have spread it out, and set thereon
    mountains standing firm, and have produced therein every kind of lovely
    growth (plants).

    An insight and a reminder for every slave turning to
    Allah (i.e., the one who believes in Allah and performs deeds of His
    obedience, and always begs His pardon). And We send down blessed water
    (rain) from the sky, then we produce therewith gardens and grain (every
    kind of harvests that are reaped). And tall date palms, with ranged
    clusters; a provision for (Allah's) slaves. And We give life therewith
    to a dead land. Thus will be the resurrection (of the dead). Denied
    before them (i.e. these pagans of Makka who denied you, O Muhammad) the
    people of Noah, and the dwellers of Rass, and the Thamud, and 'Ad, and
    Pharaoh, and the brethren of Lot, and the dwellers of the Wood, and the
    people of Tubba, everyone of them denied their Messengers, so My Threat
    took effect." (Ch 50: 2-14 Quran)

    Almighty Allah also declared:

    "All praises and
    thanks be to Allah Who Alone created the heavens and the earth, and
    originated the darkness and the light, yet those who disbelieve hold
    others as equal with their Lord. He it is Who has created you from
    clay, and then has decreed a stated term (for you to die). And there is
    with Him another determined term (for you to be resurrected), yet you
    doubt (in the Resurrection).

    And He is Allah (to be worshipped Alone) in the
    heavens and on the earth, He knows what you conceal and what you
    reveal, and He knows what you earn (good or bad). And never an Ayah
    (sign) comes to them from the Ayat (proofs, evidences, lessons, signs,
    revelations, etc.) of their Lord, but that they have been turning away
    from it.

    Indeed, they rejected the truth (The Qur'an and
    Muhammad) when it came to them, but there will come to them the news of
    that (the torment) which they used to mock at. Have they not seen how
    many a generation before them We have destroyed whom We had established
    on the earth such as We have not established you? And We poured out on
    them rain from the sky in abundance, and made the rivers flow under
    them. Yet We destroyed them for their sins, and created after them
    other generations." (Ch 6:1-6 Quran)

    As the number of believers increased and the cause of
    the Prophet was strengthened by the conversions of many powerful
    citizens, the Prophet's preaching alarmed the Quraish. Their power and
    prestige were at stake. They were the custodians of the idols, which
    the Prophet had threatened to destroy; they were the ministers of the
    worship, which he denounced; in fact their existence and living wholly
    depended upon the maintenance of the old institutions. The Prophet
    taught that in the sight of his Lord all human were equal, the only
    distinction recognized among them being the weight of their piety.

    Allah the Exalted said:

    "O mankind! We have created
    you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes,
    that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you in the
    Sight of Allah is that believer who has At Taqwa (one of the Muttaqun,
    pious and righteous persons who fear Allah much, abstain from all kinds
    of sins and evil deeds which He has forbidden), and love Allah much
    (perform all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained. Verily! Allah
    is All-Knowing, All-Aware." (Ch 49:13 Quran).

    The Quraish would have none of this leveling of
    distinctions, as it reflected upon their long inherited privileges.
    Accordingly, they organized a system of persecution in order to
    suppress the movement before it became firmly established. They decided
    that each family should take upon itself the task of stamping out the
    new faith on the spot. Each household tortured its own members or
    adherents or slaves who were supposed to have connected themselves with
    the new religion. With the exception of the Prophet, who was protected
    by Abu Talib and his kinsmen, and Abu Bakr, and a few others who were
    either distinguished by their rank or possessed some influence among
    the Quraish, all other converts were subjected to different sorts of
    torture. Some of them were thrown into prison, starved, and then
    flogged. The hill of Ramada and the place called Bata thus became
    scenes of cruel torture.

    Quraish fear spread of
    Islam - Try in vain to blackmail Prophet

    One day the Quraish tried to induce the Prophet to
    discontinue his teachings of the new religion, which had sown discord
    among their people. 'Utba Ibn Rabi'a, was delegated to see the Prophet
    and speak to him. 'Utba said: "O son of my brother, you are
    distinguished by your qualities; yet you have sown discord among our
    people and cast dissension in our families; you denounced our gods and
    goddesses and you charge our ancestors with impiety. Now we are come to
    make a proposition to you, and I ask you to think well before you
    reject it." "I am listening to you, O father of Walid," said the
    Prophet. "O son of my brother, if by this affair you intend to acquire
    riches, honors, and dignity, we are willing to collect for you a
    fortune larger than is possessed by any one of us; we shall make you
    our chief and will do nothing without you. If you desire dominion, we
    shall make you our king; and if the demon which possesses you cannot be
    subdued, we will bring you doctors and give them riches until they cure
    you." When 'Utba had finished his discourse, the Prophet said: "Now
    listen to me, O father of Walid." "I listen." He replied. The Prophet,
    recited to him the first thirteen verses of Surah Fussilat, which maybe
    interpreted as follows: 

    "Ha Mim (These letters are one of the miracles of
    the
    Quran, 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 Quran in Arabic for people who
    know. Giving glad tidings (of Paradise to the one who believes in the
    Oneness of Allah, 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 Hellfire to be 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, and in our ears is
    deafness, and between us and you is a screen, so work you (on your
    way); verily we are working (on our way).

    Say (O Muhammad): "I am only a human being like you.
    It is inspired in me that your Ilah (God) is One Ilah (God - Allah),
    therefore take the Straight Path to Him (with true Faith - Islamic
    Monotheism) and obedience to Him, and seek forgiveness of Him. And woe
    to Al-Mushrikeen; (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, and disbeliveers in
    the Oneness of Allah, etc, those who worship others along with or set
    up rivals or partners to Allah etc.) Those who give not the Zakat and
    they are disbeliveers in the Hereafter. Truly, those who believe (in
    the Oneness of Allah and in His Messenger Muhammad - Islamic
    Monotheism) and do righteous good deeds for them will be an endless
    reward that will never stop (Paradise).

    Say (O Muhammad): "Do you verily disbelieve in Him
    Who created the earth in two Days and you set up rivals (in worship)
    with Him? That is the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that
    exists).

    He placed therein (the earth) firm mountains from
    above it, and He blessed it, and measured therein its sustenance (for
    its dwellers) in four Days equal (all these four days were equal in the
    length of time), for all those who ask (about its creation). Then He
    Istawa (rose over) towards the heaven when it was smoke, and said to it
    and to the earth: "Come both of you willingly or unwillingly." They
    both said: "We come, willingly." Then He completed and finished from
    their creation as seven heavens in two days and he made in each heaven
    with lamps (stars) to b e an adornment as well as to guard (from the
    devils by using them as missiles against the devils). Such is the
    Decree of Him the All Mighty, The All Knower.

    But if they turn away, then say (O Muhammad): "I
    have warned you of a Sa'iqa (a destruction awful cry, torment, hit, a
    thunder bolt) like the Sa'iqa which overtook 'Ad and Thamud (people)."
    (Ch 41:1-13 Quran).

    When the Prophet had finished his recitation, he said
    to 'Utba: "This is my reply to your proposition; now take what course
    you find best."

    Quraish increase
    Persecution - First Hijra of 615 C.E. to Abyssinia

    Persecution by the Quraish grew fiercer every day and
    the sufferings of the Prophet's disciples became unbearable. He had
    heard of the righteousness, tolerance, and hospitality of the
    neighboring Christian king of Abyssinia. He recommended such of his
    companions who were without protection to seek refuge in the kingdom of
    that pious king, Al Najashi (Negus). Some fifteen of the unprotected
    adherents of Islam promptly availed themselves of the advice and sailed
    to Abyssinia. Here they met with a very kind reception from the Negus.
    This is called the first hijrah (migration) in the history of Islam and
    occurred in the fifth year of the Prophet Muhammad's mission, A.D. 615.
    These emigrants were soon followed by many of their fellow sufferers,
    until the number reached eighty-three men and eighteen women.

    The hostile Quraish, furious at the escape of their
    victims, sent deputes to the king of Abyssinia to request him to
    deliver up the refugees, that they might be put to death for adjuring
    their old religion and embracing a new one. The king summoned the poor
    fugitives and inquired of them what was the religion, which they had
    adopted in preference to their old faith. Ja'far, son of Abu Talib and
    brother of 'Ali, acted as spokesman for the exiles. He spoke thus: "O
    king, we were plunged in the depth of ignorance and barbarism, we
    adored idols, we lived in unchastity, and we ate dead bodies, and we
    spoke abomination, we disregarded every feeling of humanity and sense
    of duty towards our neighbors, and 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. He called us to profess the Unity of
    Allah and taught us to associate nothing with Him; he forbade us the
    worship of idols and enjoined us to speak the truth, to be faithful to
    our trusts, to be merciful, and to regard the rights of neighbors; he
    forbade us to speak evil of the worship of Allah and not to return to
    the worship of idols of woos and stone and to abstain from evil, to
    offer prayers, to give alms, to observe the fast. We have believed in
    him, we have accepted his teachings and his injunctions to worship
    Allah alone and to associate nothing with Him. Hence our people have
    persecuted us, trying to make us forego the worship of Allah and return
    to the worship of idols of wood and stone and other abominations. They
    have tortured us and injured us until, finding no safety among them, we
    have come to your kingdom trusting you will give us protection against
    their persecution."

    Al-Najashi (Negus),
    King of Abyssinia protects Muslims

    After hearing the above speech, the hospitable king
    ordered the deputies to return to their people in safety and not to
    interfere with their fugitives. Thus the emigrants passed the period of
    exile in peace and comfort.

    While the followers of the Prophet sought safety in
    foreign lands against the persecution of their people, he continued his
    warnings to the Quraish more strenuously than ever. Again they came to
    him with offers of riches and honor, which he firmly and utterly
    refused. But they mocked at him and urged him for miracles to prove his
    mission. He used to answer: "Allah has not sent me to work wonders; He
    has sent me to preach to you."

    Thus disclaiming all power of wonder working, the
    Prophet ever rested the truth of his divine mission upon his wise
    teachings. He addressed himself to the inner consciousness of man, to
    his common sense and to his own better judgement:

    "Say (O Muhammad):
    "I am only a human being like you. It is inspired in me that your Ilah
    (God) is One Ilah (God- Allah), therefore take the Straight Path to Him
    (with true Faith - Islamic Monotheism) and obedience to Him and seek
    forgiveness of Him. And woe to Al Mushrikeen; (polytheists, pagans,
    idolaters, and disbeliveers in the Oneness of Allah etc., those who
    worship others along with Allah or set up rivals or partners to Allah
    etc. (Ch 41:6 Quran)

    Despite all the exhortation of the Prophet, the Quraish
    persisted in asking him for a sign. They insisted that unless some sign
    be sent down to him from his Lord, they would not believe. The
    disbeliveers used to ask: "Why has Muhammad not been sent with miracles
    like previous prophets?" T he Prophet replied: "Because miracles had
    proved inadequate to convince. Noah was sent with signs, and with what
    effect? Where was the lost tribe of Thamud? They had refused to receive
    the preaching of the Prophet Salih, unless he showed them a sign and
    caused the rock to bring forth a living camel. He did what they asked.
    In scorn they cut the camel's feet and then daring the prophet to
    fulfill his threats of judgment, were found dead in their beds the next
    morning, stricken by the angel of the Lord."

    The Holy Quran is a
    Miracle

    There are some seventeen places in the Quran, in which
    the Prophet Muhammad is challenged to work a sign, and he answered them
    all to the same or similar effect: Allah has the power of working
    miracles, and has not been believed; there were greater miracles in
    nature than any which could be wrought outside of it; and the Quran
    itself was a great, everlasting miracle. The Quran, the Prophet used to
    assert to the disbeliveers, is a book of blessings which is a warning
    for the whole world; it is a complete guidance and explains everything
    necessary; it is a reminder of what is imprinted on human nature and is
    free from every discrepancy and from error and falsehood. It is a book
    of true guidance and a light to all.

    As to the sacred idols, so much honored and esteemed by
    the pagan Arabs, the Prophet openly recited:

    "They are but names
    which you have named - you and your fathers - for which Allah has sent
    down no authority." (CH 53:23 Quran)

    When the Prophet thus spoke reproachfully of the sacred
    gods of the Quraish, the latter redoubled their persecution. But the
    Prophet, nevertheless, continued his preaching undaunted but the
    hostility of his enemies or by their bitter persecution of him. And
    despite all opposition and increased persecution, the new faith gained
    ground. The national fair at Okadh near Mecca attracted many desert
    Bedouins and trading citizen of distant towns. These listened to the
    teachings of the Prophet, to his admonitions, and to his denunciations
    of their sacred idols and of their superstitions. They carried back all
    that they had heard to their distant homes, and thus the advent of the
    Prophet was made know to almost all parts of the peninsula.

    Makkans plea to Abu
    Talib to stop the Prophet

    The Meccans, however, were more than ever furious at
    the Prophet's increasing preaching against their religion. They asked
    his uncle Abu Talib to stop him, but he could not do anything. At , as
    the Prophet persisted in his ardent denunciations against their
    ungodliness and impiety, they turned him out from the Ka'ba where he
    used to sit and preach, and subsequently went in a body to Abu Talib.
    They urged the venerable chief to prevent his nephew from abusing their
    gods any longer or uttering any ill words against their ancestors. They
    warned Abu Talib that if he would not do that, he would be excluded
    from the communion of his people and driven to side with Muhammad; the
    matter would then be settled by fight until one of the two parties were
    exterminated.

    Abu Talib neither wished to separate himself from his
    people, nor forsake his nephew for the idolaters to revenge themselves
    upon. He spoke to the Prophet very softly and begged him to abandon his
    affair. To this suggestion the Prophet firmly replied: "O my uncle, if
    they placed the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left hand to
    cause me to renounce my task, verily I would not desist therefrom until
    Allah made manifest His cause or I perished in the attempt." The
    Prophet, overcome by the thought that his uncle and protector was
    willing to desert him, turned to depart. But Abu Talib called him
    loudly to come back, and he came. "Say whatever you please; for by the
    Lord I shall not desert you ever."

    Abu Talib protects his
    Nephew, the Prophet

    The Quraish again attempted in vain to cause Abu Talib
    to abandon his nephew. The venerable chief declared his intention to
    protect his nephew against any menace or violence. He appealed to the
    sense of honor of the two families of the Bani Hashim and the Bani
    Muttalib, both families being kinsmen of the Prophet, to protect their
    member from falling a victim to the hatred of rival parties. All the
    members of the two families nobly responded to the appeal of Abu Talib
    except Abu Lahab, one of the Prophet's uncles, who took part with the
    persecutors.

    Umar Al-Khattab
    submits to Islam

    During this period, 'Umar Al-Khattab adopted Islam. In
    him the new faith gained a valuable adherent and an important factor in
    the future development and propagation of Islam. Hitherto he had been a
    violent opposer of the Prophet and a bitter enemy of Islam. His
    conversion is said to have been worked by the miraculous effect on his
    mind of a Surah of the Quran which his sister was reading in her house,
    where he had gone with the intention of killing her for adopting Islam.
    Thus the party of the Prophet had been strengthened by the conversation
    by his uncle Hamza, a man of great valor and merit; and of Abu Bakr and
    'Umar, both men of great energy and reputation. The Muslims now
    ventured to perform their devotions in public.

    Quraish divided into two factions



    Alarmed at the bold part which the
    Prophet and his
    followers were not able to assume, and roused by the return of the
    deputies from Abyssinia and the announcement of their unsuccessful
    mission, the Quraish determined to check by a decisive blow any further
    progress of Islam. Towards this end, in the seventh year of the
    mission, they made a solemn covenant against the descendants of Hashim
    and Muttalib, engaging themselves to contract no marriage with any of
    them and to have no communication with them. Upon this, the Quraish
    became divided into two factions, and the two families of Hashim and
    Muttalib all repaired to Abu Talib as their chief.

    Abu Lahab's hatred of Islam

    Abu Lahab, the
    Prophet's uncle, however, out of his inveterate hatred of his nephew
    and his doctrine, went over to the opposite party, whose chief was Abu
    Sufyan Ibn Harb, of the family of Umayya. The persecuted party, Muslims
    as well as idolaters betook themselves to a defile on the eastern
    skirts of Mecca. They lived in this defensive position for three years.
    The provisions, which they had carried with them, were soon exhausted.
    Probably they would have entirely perished but for the sympathy and
    occasional help received from less bigoted compatriots.


    Reconcilliation of the
    Quraish

    Towards the beginning of the tenth year of the mission,
    reconciliation was concluded between the Quraish and the two families
    of Hashim and Abdul Muttalib through the intermediation of Hisham, Ibn
    Umar, and Zobeir, Ibn Abu Umayya. Thus, the alliance against the two
    families was abolished, and they were able to return to Mecca.

    During the period the Prophet and his kinspeople passed
    in their defensive position, Islam made no progress outside; but in the
    sacred months, when violence was considered sacrilege, the Prophet used
    to come out of his temporary prison to preach Islam to the pilgrims.

    Death of Abu Talib and
    Khadijah

    In
    the following year, both Abu Talib and Khadijah died. Thus the Prophet
    lost in Abu Talib the kind guardian of his youth who had hitherto
    protected him against his enemies, and in Khadijah his most encouraging
    companion. She was ever his angel of hope and consolation. The Prophet,
    weighed down by the loss of his amiable protector and his beloved wife,
    without hope of turning the Quraish from idolatry, with a saddened
    heart, yet full of trust, resolved to exercise his ministry in some of
    her field. He chose Taif, a town about sixty miles east of Mecca, where
    he went accompanied by a faithful servant Zaid.

    The tribe of Thakif,
    who were the inhabitants of Taif, received Muhammad very coldly.
    However, he stayed there for one month. Though the more considerate and
    better sort of men treated him with a little respect, the slaves and
    common people refused to listen to his teachings; they were
    outrageously indignant at his invitation to abandon the gods they
    worshipped with such freedom of morals and lightness of heart. At
    length they rose against him, and bringing him to the wall of the city,
    obliged him to depart and return to Mecca.

    People of Madina
    accept Prophet

    The repulse greatly discouraged his followers; however,
    the Prophet boldly continued to preach to the public assemblies at the
    pilgrimage and gained several new converts, among whom were six of the
    city of Yahtrib (later called Medina), of the Jewish tribe of Khazraj.
    When these Yathribites returned home, they spread the news among their
    people that a prophet had arisen among the Arabs who was to call them
    to Allah and put an end to their inquiries.

    Miraj (Ascension to the Heavens) on a
    creature called Buraq

    In the twelfth year of his mission, the Prophet made
    his night journey from Mecca to Jerusalem, and thence to heaven. His
    journey, known in history as Miraj (Ascension) was a real bodily one
    and not only a vision. It was at this time that Allah ordered the
    Muslims to pray the five daily prayers.

    Almighty Allah had said: Glorified (and Exalted) be
    He (Allah) (above all that evil they associate with Him), Who took His
    slave Muhammad for a journey by night from AL Masjid al Haram (at
    Makka) to the farthest mosque (in Jerusalem), the neighborhood whereof
    We have blessed, order that We might show him (Muhammad) of Our Ayat
    (proofs, evidences, lessons, signs, etc.). Verily, He is the All
    Hearer, the All Seer." (Ch 17:1 Quran)

    Abbas Ibn Malik reported that Malik Ibn Sasaa said that
    Allah's Messenger described to them his Night Journey saying: "While I
    was lying in Al-Hatim or Al-Hijr, suddenly someone came to me and cut
    my body open from here to here." I asked Al-Jarud, who was by my side,
    "What does he mean?" He said: "It means from his throat to his public
    area," or said, "From the top of the chest." The Prophet further said,
    "He then took out my heart. Then a gold tray of Belief was brought to
    me and my heart was washed and was filled (with Belief) and then
    returned to its original place. Then a white animal which was smaller
    than a mule and bigger than a donkey was brought to me." (On this
    Al-Jarud asked: "Was it in the Buraq, O Abu Hamza?" I (Anas) replied in
    the affirmative. The Prophet said: "The animal's step (was so wide that
    it) reached the farthest point within the reach of the animals' sight.
    I was carried on it.

    Miraj - Muhammad's
    encounter with Adam (Hadith)

    Gabriel set out with me till we reached the
    nearest heaven.

    "When he asked for the gate to be opened, it was asked,
    'Who is it?' Gabriel answered, 'Gabriel.' It was asked, 'Who is
    accompany you?' Gabriel replied, 'Muhammad.' It was asked, 'Has
    Muhammad been called?' Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then it was
    said. 'He is welcomed. What an excellent visit his is!' The gate was
    opened, and when I went over the first heaven, I saw Adam there.
    Gabriel said to me: 'This is your father, Adam; pay him your
    greetings.' So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and
    said: 'You are welcomed, O pious son and pious Prophet.'

    Miraj - Muhammad's
    encounter with John and Jesus (Hadith)

    Then Gabriel
    ascended with me till we reached the second heaven. Gabriel asked for
    the gate to be opened. It was asked: 'Who is it?' Gabriel answered:
    'Gabriel.' It was asked: 'Who is accompany you?' Gabriel replied,
    'Muhammad.' It was asked: 'Has he been called?' Gabriel answered in the
    affirmative. Then it was said: 'He is welcomed. What an excellent visit
    his is!' The gate was opened. "When I went over the second heaven, here
    I saw John
    (Yahya) and Jesus (Isa), who were cousins of each other. Gabriel said
    to me: "These are John and Jesus; pay them your greetings.' So I
    greeted them and both of them returned my greetings to me and said,
    'You are welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet.'

    Miraj - Muhammad's
    encounter with Joseph (Hadith)

     Then Gabriel
    ascended with me to the third heaven and asked for its gate to be
    opened. IT was asked 'Who is it?' And Gabriel replied: 'Gabriel.' It
    was asked, 'Who is accompany you?' Gabriel replied, 'Muhammad.' It was
    asked, 'Has he been called?' Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then
    it was said: 'He is welcomed, what an excellent visit his is!' The gate
    was opened, and when I went over the third heaven there I saw Joseph
    (Yusuf), Gabriel said to me: 'This is Joseph, pay him your greetings.'
    So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: 'You are
    welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet.'

    Miraj - Muhammad's
    encounter with Enoch (Hadith)

     Then Gabriel ascended
    with me to the fourth heaven and asked for its gate to be opened. IT
    was asked 'Who is it?' Gabriel replied, 'Gabriel' It was asked: 'Who is
    accompany you?' Gabriel replied: 'Muhammad.' It was asked: 'Has he been
    called?' Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then it was said: 'He is
    welcomed, what an excellent visit his is!' "The gate was opened, and
    when I went over the fourth
    heaven, there I saw Enoch (Idris), Gabriel said to me: 'This is Enoch;
    pay him your greetings.' So I greeted him and he returned the greetings
    to me and said: 'You are welcomed O pious brother and pious Prophet.'

    Miraj - Muhammad's
    encounter with Aaron (Hadith)

    Then Gabriel ascended with me to the fifth heaven and
    asked for its
    gate to be opened. It was asked: 'Who is it?' Gabriel replied:
    'Gabriel.' It was asked: 'Who is accompany you?' Gabriel replied
    'Muhammad.' It was asked: 'Has he been called?' Gabriel replied in the
    affirmative. Then it was said: 'He is welcomed, what an excellent visit
    his is!' So when I went over the fifth heaven, there I saw Aaron
    (Harun), Gabriel said to me: "This is Aaron; pay hyour greetings.' So I
    greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: "You are
    welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet."

    Miraj - Muhammad's
    encounter with Moses (Hadith)

    Then Gabriel ascended with
    me to the sixth heaven and asked for its gate to be opened. It was
    asked: 'Who is it?' Gabriel replied: 'Gabriel.' It was asked: 'Who is
    accompanying you?' Gabriel replied: 'Muhammad.' It was said: 'Has he
    been called?' Gabriel replied in the affirmative. It was said: 'He is
    welcomed. What an excellent visit his is!' "When I went over the sixth
    heaven, there I saw Moses
    (Musa). Gabriel said to me: "This is Moses; pay him your greeting. So I
    greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: "You are
    welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet." When I left him (Moses)
    he wept. Someone asked him: 'What makes you weep?' Moses said: 'I weep
    because after me there has been sent (as Prophet) a young man whose
    followers will enter Paradise in greater numbers than my followers.'

    Miraj - Muhammad's
    encounter with Abraham (Hadith)

    Then Gabriel ascended with me to the seventh heaven and
    asked for its
    gate to be opened. It was asked: 'Who is it?' Gabriel replied:
    'Gabriel.' It was asked: 'Who is accompanying you?' Gabriel replied:
    'Muhammad.' It was asked: 'Has he been called?' Gabriel replied in the
    affirmative. Then it said: 'He is welcomed. What an excellent visit his
    is!' "So when I went (over the seventh heaven), there I saw
    Abraham (Ibrahim). Gabriel said to me: 'This is your father; pay your
    greetings to him.' So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me
    and said: 'You are welcomed, O pious son and pious Prophet.'

     

    Then I was
    made to ascend to Sidrat-ul-Muntaha (the Lote Tree of the utmost
    boundary). Behold! Its fruits were like the jars of Hajr (a place near
    Medina) and its leaves were as big as the ears of elephants. Gabriel
    said: "This is the Lote Tree of the utmost and boundary.' Behold! There
    ran four rivers, two were hidden and two were visible, I asked: 'What
    are these two kinds of rivers, O Gabriel?' He replied: 'As for the
    hidden rivers, they are two rivers in Paradise and the visible rivers
    are the Nile and the Euphrates.'

    Moses advises Muhammad
    to plea to Allah to lessen prayers

    "Then Al-Bait-ul-Ma'mur (the Sacred House) was shown to
    me and a container full of wine and another full of milk and a third
    full of honey were brought to me. I took the milk. Gabriel remarked:
    'This is the Islamic religion which you and your followers are
    following.' Then the prayers were enjoined on me: they were fifty
    prayers a day. When I returned, I passed by Moses, who asked me; 'What
    have you been ordered to do?' I replied: 'I have been ordered to offer
    fifty prayers a day.' Moses said: 'Your followers cannot bear fifty
    prayers a day, and by Allah I have tested people before you, and I have
    tried my level best with Bani Israel in vain. Go back to your Lord and
    ask for reduction to lessen your followers'' burden.' So I went back,
    and Allah reduced ten prayers for me. Then again I came to Moses, but
    he repeated the same as he had said before. Then again I went back to
    Allah, and He reduced ten more prayers. When I came to Moses he said
    the same. I went back to Allah, and He ordered m to observe ten prayers
    a day. When I came back to Moses, he repeated the same advice, so I
    went back to Allah and was ordered to observe five prayers a day.

    "When I came back to Moses, he said: 'What have you
    been ordered?' I replied: 'I have been ordered to observe five prayers
    a day.' He said: 'Your followers cannot bear fear prayers a day, and no
    doubt, I have got an experience of the people before you, and I have
    tried my level best with Bani Israel, so go back to your Lord and ask
    for reduction to lesson your followers' burden.' I said: 'I have
    requested so much of my Lord that I feel ashamed, but I am satisfied
    now and surrender to Allah's Order.' When I left, I heard a voice
    saying: 'I have passed My order and have lessened the burden of My
    worshippers.'"

    Women's Oath - People
    of Yathrib (Madina) submit to Islam

    In this year, twelve men of Yathrib, of whom ten were
    of the Jewish tribe of Khazraj and the other two of Aws, came to Meccan
    and took an oath of fidelity to the Prophet at Al-Aqaba, a hill on the
    north of that city. This oath was called the Women's' Oath, not that
    any women were present at this time, but because a man was not thereby
    obliged to take up arms in defense of the Prophet or his religion, it
    being the same oath that was afterwards exacted of the women. This oath
    was as follows: "We will not associate anything with Allah; we will not
    steal nor commit adultery or fornication, nor kill our children (as the
    pagan Arabs used to do when they apprehended that they would not be
    able to maintain them), nor forge calumnies; we will obey the Prophet
    in everything that is reasonable, and we will be faithful to him in
    well and sorrow." When they had solemnly engaged to do all this, the
    Prophet sent one of his disciples, Mus'ab Ibn Umair, home with them to
    teach them the fundamental doctrines and ceremonies of the religion.
    Mus'ab, having arrived at Yathrib by the assistance of those who had
    been formerly converted, gained several new converts, particularly
    Usaid Ibn Khudair, a chief of man of the city, and Sa'd Ibn Mu'adh,
    prince of the tribe of Aws. Islam spread so fast that there was a
    scarce a house that did not have some Muslims in it.

    The next year, being the thirteenth of the mission
    (A.D. 622) Mus'ab returned from Yathrib accompanied by seventy-three
    men and two women of that city who had adopted Islam, besides others
    who were as yet unbelievers. On their arrival, these Yathribites
    immediately sent to the Prophet and invited him to their city. The
    Prophet was not in great need of such assistance, for his opponents had
    by this time grown so powerful in Mecca that he could not stay there
    much longer without imminent danger. He therefore accepted their
    proposal and met them one night by appointment at Al Aqaba attended by
    his uncle Al-Abbas, who, though he as not then a convert, wished his
    nephew well.

    Al Abbas made a speech to those of Yathrib wherein he told
    them that, as the Prophet Muhammad was obliged to quit his native city
    and seek shelter elsewhere, and they had offered him their protection,
    they would do well not to deceive him; and that if they were not firmly
    resolved to defend and not to betray him, they had better declare their
    minds and let him provide for his safety in some other manner. Upon
    their professing their sincerity, the Prophet swore to be faithful to
    them, on condition that they should worship none but Allah observe the
    precepts of Islam, obey the Prophet in all that was right, and protect
    him against all insults as heartily as they would their wives and
    families. They then asked him what would be their return, if they
    should happen to be killed in the cause of Allah; he answered:
    "Paradise," whereupon they pledged their faith to him and his cause.


    The Hijra - People of Yathrib (Madina)
    welcome Muslims


    The Prophet then selected twelve men out of their number to act as his
    delegates. Thus was concluded the second covenant of Al Aqaba. The
    Yathribites returned home leaving the Prophet to arrange for the
    journey to their city. The Prophet directed his followers to seek
    immediate safety at Yathrib, which they accordingly did. About one
    hundred families silently disappeared from Mecca and proceeded to
    Yathrib, where they were received with enthusiasm and much hospitality.
    Finally, all the disciples had gone to Yathrib. The Prophet alone
    remained at Mecca, keeping with him only his young cousin, 'Ali, and
    his devoted friend Abu Bakr.

    The Makkans plot to
    kill Allah's Prophet

    The Meccans, fearing the consequence of this new
    alliance, began to think seriously of preventing Muhammad from escaping
    to Yathrib. They met in all haste. After several milder expedients had
    been rejected, they decided that he should be killed. They agreed that
    one man should be chosen out of every tribe and that each man should
    strike a blow at him with his sword so that responsibility of the guilt
    would rest equally on all tribes. The Bani Hashim, Muhammad's own
    tribe, were much inferior and therefore would not be able to revenge
    their kinsman's death.

    A number of noble youths were selected for the bloody
    deed. As the night advanced, the assassins posted themselves round the
    Prophet's dwelling. They watched all night long, waiting to murder
    Muhammad when he should leave his house at the early dawn. By some the
    Prophet had warned of the danger, and he directed 'Ali to lie down in
    his place and wrap himself up in his green clock, which he did. The
    Prophet miraculously escaped through the window and he repaired to the
    house of Abu Bakr, unperceived by door. These, in the meantime, looking
    through a crevice and seeing 'Ali, whom they mistook for Muhammad
    himself, asleep, continued watching there until morning. When 'Ali
    arose, they found themselves deceived. The fury of the Quraish was now
    unbounded. The news that the would be assassins had returned
    unsuccessful and that Muhammad had escaped aroused their whole energy.
    A price of a hundred camels was set upon Muhammad's head.

    A narration Aisha Bint Abu Bakr
    (Prophet's Wife)

    Narrated 'Aisha Bint Abu Bakr (the wife of the
    Prophet): "I never remembered my parents believing in any religion
    other than the true religion (Islam), and (I don't remember) a single
    day passing without our being visited by Allah's Messenger in the
    morning and in the evening. When the Muslims were put to test (troubled
    by the pagans), Abu Bakr set out migrating to the land of Abyssinia
    (Ethiopia), and when he reached Bark-al-Ghimad, Ibn Ad-Daghina, the
    chief of the tribe of Qara, met him and said, 'O Abu Bakr! Where are
    you going?' Abu Bakr replied: 'My people have turned me out (of my
    country), so I want to wander on the earth and worship my Lord.' Ibn
    Ad-Dhagina said: 'O Abu Bakr! A man like you should not leave his
    homeland, nor should he be driven out, because you help the destitute,
    earn their living, and you keep good relations with your kith and kin,
    help the weak and the poor, entertain guests generously, and help the
    calamity-stricken persons. Therefore, I am your protector. Go back and
    worship your Lord in your town.'

    "So Abu Bakr returned and Ibn Ad-Daghina accompanied
    him. In the evening Ibn Ad-Dhagina visited the nobles of Quraish and
    said to them. 'A man like Abu Bakr should not leave his homeland, nor
    should he be driven out. Do you (Quraish) drive out a man who helps the
    destitute, earns their living, keeps good relations with his kith and
    kin, helps the weak and poor, entertain guests generously and helps the
    calamity-stricken persons?' So the people of Quraish could not refuse
    Ibn Ad-Dhagina's protection, and they said to Ibn Ad-Daghina: 'Let Abu
    Bakr worship his Lord in his house. He can pray and recite there
    whatever he likes, but he should not hurt us with it, and should not do
    it publicly, because we are afraid that he may affect our women and
    children." Ibn Ad-Dhagina told Abu Bakr all of that. Abu Bakr stayed in
    that state, worshipping his Lord in his house. He did not pray
    publicly, nor did he recite Quran outside his house.

    Abu Bakr builds Mosque

    "Then a thought occurred to Abu Bakr to build a mosque
    in front of his house, and there he used to pray and recite the Quran.
    The women and children of the pagans began to gather around him in
    great number. They used to wonder at him and look at him. Abu Bakr was
    a man who used to weep too much, and he could not help weeping or
    reciting the Quran. That situation scared the nobles of the pagans of
    Quraish, so they sent for Ibn Ad-Daghina. When he came to them, they
    said: 'We accepted your protection of Abu Bakr on condition that he
    should worship his Lord in his house, but he has violated the
    conditions and he has built a mosque in front of his house where he
    prays and recites the Quran publicly. We are not afraid that he may
    affect our women and children unfavorably. So, prevent him from that.
    If he likes to confine the worship of his Lord to his house, he may do
    so, but if he insists on doing that openly, ask him to release you from
    your obligation to protect him, for we dislike to break our pact with
    you, but we deny Abu Bakr the right to announce his act publicly.' Ibn
    Ad-Dhagina went to Abu Bakr and said: 'O Abu Bakr! You know well what
    contract I have made on your behalf; now, you are either to abide by
    it, or else release me from my obligation of protecting you, because I
    do not want the Arabs hear that my people have dishonored a contract I
    have made on behalf of another man.' Abu Bakr replied: 'I release you
    from your pact to protect me and am pleased with the protection from
    Allah.' Aisha's narration's continues: "At that time the Prophet was in
    Mecca, and he said to the Muslims: 'In a dream I have been shown your
    migration place, a land of date palm trees, between two mountains, the
    two stony tracts.' So, some people migrated to Medina, and most of
    those people who had previously migrated to the land of Ethiopia,
    returned to Medina. Abu Bakr also prepared to leave for Medina, but
    Allah's Messenger said to him: 'Wait for awhile, because I hope that I
    will be allowed to migrate also.' Abu Bakr replied: 'Do you indeed
    expect this? Let my father be sacrificed for you!' The Prophet said:
    'Yes.' So Abu Bakr did not migrate for the sake of Allah's Messenger in
    order to accompany him. He fed two she camels he possessed with the
    leaves of As-Samur tree that fell on being struck by a stick for four
    months.

    "One day, while we were sitting in Abu Bakr's house at
    noon, someone said to Abu Bakr: 'This is Allah's Messenger with his
    head covered coming at a time at which he never used to visit us
    before.' Abu Bakr said: 'May my parents be sacrificed for him. By Allah
    he has not come at this hour except for a great necessity.' So Allah's
    Messenger came and asked permission to enter, and he was allowed to
    enter. When he entered, he said to Abu Bakr: "Tell everyone who is
    present with you to go away.' Abu Bakr replied: 'There are none but
    your family, May my father be sacrificed for you, O Allah's Messenger!'
    The Prophet said: 'I have been given permission to migrate.' Abu Bakr
    said: 'Shall I accompany you? May my father be sacrificed for you, O
    Allah's Messenger!' Allah's Messenger said: 'Yes.' Abu Bakr said, 'O
    Allah's Messenger! May my father be sacrificed for you, take one of
    these two she-camels of mine.' Allah's Messenger replied: 'I will
    accept it with payment.' So we prepared the baggage quickly and put
    some journey food in a leather bag for them. Asma, Abu Bakr's daughter,
    cut a piece from her waist belt and tied the mouth of the leather bag
    with it, and for that reason she was named 'Dhat-un-Nitaqain' (the
    owner of two belts).

    "Then Allah's Messenger and Abu Bakr reached a cave on
    the mountain of Thaur and stayed there for three nights. Abdullah Ibn
    Abi Bakr who was an intelligent and sagacious youth, used to stay with
    them overnight. He used to leave them before daybreak so that in the
    morning he would be with Quraish as if he had spent the night in Mecca.
    He would keep in mind any plot made against them and when it became
    dark he would go and inform them of it. 'Amir Ibn Fuhaira, the freed
    slave of Abu Bakr, used to bring the milch sheep (of his master, Abu
    Bakr) to them a little while after nightfall in order to rest the sheep
    there. So they always had fresh milk at night, the milk of their sheep,
    and the milk which they warmed by throwing heated stones in it. 'Amir
    Ibn Fuhaira would then call the herd away when it was still dark
    (before daybreak). He did the same in each of those three nights.
    Allah's Messenger and Abu Bakr had hired a man from the tribe of Bani
    Ad-Dail from the family of Bani Abd Ibn Adi as an expert guide, and he
    was in alliance with the family of Al-As Ibn Wail As-Sahmi and he was
    in the religion of the infidels of Quraish. The Prophet and Abu Bakr
    trusted him and gave him their two she-camels and took his promise to
    bring their two she-camels to the cave of the mountain of Thaur in the
    morning after three nights later. And when they set out, Amir Ibn
    Futhaira and the guide went along with them and the guide led them,
    along the seashore." (Sahih Al-Bukhari).

    The nephew of Suraqa Ibn Ju'sham said that his father
    informed him that he heard Suraqa Ibn Jusham saying: "The messengers of
    the pagans of Quraish came to us declaring that they had assigned for
    the persons who would kill or arrest Allah's Messenger and Abu Bakr, a
    reward equal to their bloodmoney. While I was sitting in one of the
    gatherings of my tribe, Bani Mudlij, a man from them came to us and
    stood up while we were sitting and said: 'O Suraqa! No , I have just
    seen some people far away on the seashore, and I think they are
    Muhammad and his companions.' I, too, realized that it must have been
    they. But I said: 'No, it is not they, but you have seen so-and-so and
    so-and-so, whom we saw set out.' I stayed in the gathering for a while
    and then got up and left for my home, and ordered my slave-girl to get
    my horse, which was behind a hillock, and keep it ready for me.

    "Then I took my spear and left by the back door of my
    house dragging the lower end of the spear on the ground and keeping it
    low. Then I reached my horse, mounted it and made it gallop. When I
    approached them (Muhammad and Abu Bakr), my horse stumbled and I fell
    down from it. Then I stood up, gold hold of my quiver and took out the
    divining arrows and drew lots as to whether I should harm them or not,
    and the lot which I disliked came out. But I remounted my horse and let
    it gallop, giving no importance to the divining arrows. When I heard
    the recitation of the Qur'an by Allah's Messenger who did not look
    hither and thither while Abu Bakr was doing it often, suddenly the
    forelegs of my horse sank into the ground up to the knees, and I fell
    down from it. Then I rebuked it, and it got up but could hardly take
    out its forelegs from the ground, and when it stood up straight again,
    its forelegs caused dust to rise up in the sky like smoke. Then again I
    drew lots with the divining arrows, and the lot which I disliked came
    out. So I called upon them to feel secure. They stopped, and I
    remounted my horse and went to them. When I saw how I had been hampered
    from harming them, it came to my mind that the cause of Allah's
    Messenger (Islam) would become victorious. So I said to them: 'Your
    people have assigned a reward equal to bloodmoney for your head.' Then
    I told them all the plans the people of Mecca had made concerning them.
    Then I offered them some journey food and goods, but they refused to
    take anything and did not ask for anything, but the Prophet said: 'Do
    not tell others about us.' Then I requested him to write for me a
    statement of security and peace. He ordered 'Amir Ibn Fuhaira, who
    wrote it for me on a parchment, and then Allah's Messenger proceeded on
    his way." (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

    Holy Prophet travels
    to Madina (Hijra)

    "Narrated 'Urwa Ibn Az-Zubair: "Allah's Messenger met
    Az Zubair in a caravan of Muslim merchants who were returning from
    Sham. Az -Zubair provided Allah's Messenger and Abu Bakr with white
    clothes to wear. When the Muslims of Medina heard the new of the
    departure of Allah's Messenger from Mecca (towards Medina), they
    started going to the Harra every morning,. They would wait for him till
    the heat of the noon forced them to return. One day, after waiting for
    a long while, they returned home, and when they went into their houses,
    a Jew climbed up to the roof of one of the forts of his people to look
    for something, and he saw Allah's Messenger and his companions, dressed
    in white clothes, emerging out of the desert mirage.

    "The Jew could not help shouting at the top of his
    voice: 'O you Arabs! Here is your great man whom you have been waiting
    for!' So all the Muslims rushed to their arms and received Allah's
    Messenger on the summit of Harra. The Prophet turned with them to the
    right and alighted at the quarters of Bani Amr Ibn Auf, and this was on
    Monday in the month of Rabi ul Awal. Abu Bakr stood up, receiving the
    people, while Allah's Messenger sat down and kept silent. Some of the
    Ansar who came and had not seen Allah's Messenger before began greeting
    Abu Bakr, but when the sunshine fell on Allah's Messenger and Abu Bakr
    came forward and shaded him with his sheet, only then the people came
    to know Allah's Messenger. Allah's Messenger stayed with Bani Amr Ibn
    Auf for ten nights and established the mosque (Mosque of Quba) which
    was founded on piety. Allah's Messenger prayed in it and then mounted
    his she-camel and proceeded on, accompanied by the people till his
    she-camel knelt down at the place of the Mosque of Allah's Messenger at
    Medina. Some Muslims used to pray there in those days, and that place
    was a yard for drying dates belonging to Suhail and Sahl, the orphan
    boys who were under the guardianship of Asad In Zurara. When his
    she-camel knelt down, Allah's Messenger said: 'This place, Allah
    willing, will be our abiding place.' Allah's Messenger then called the
    two boys and told them to suggest a price for that yard so that he
    might take it as a mosque. The two boys said: 'No, but we will give it
    as a gift, O Allah's Messenger!' Allah's Messenger then built a mosque
    there. The Prophet himself started carrying unburned bricks for its
    building and while doing so, he was saying: 'This load is better than
    the load of Khaibar, for it is more pious in the Sight of Allah and
    purer and better rewardable.' He was also saying: 'O Allah! The actual
    reward is the reward in the Hereafter, so bestow Your Mercy on the
    Ansar and the Emigrants.' Thus the Prophet recited (by way of proverb)
    the poem of some Muslim poet whose name is unknown to me." (Ibn Shibab
    said, 'In the hadiths, it does not occur that Allah's Messenger recited
    a complete poetic verse other than this one.') (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

    Hijra - Islamic
    Calendar marks this date

    Thus was accomplished the hijrah, or the flight of
    Muhammad as called in European annals, from which the Islamic calendar
    dates.


    Yathrib renamed Al-Madina, Al-Munawara
    - "The Illuminated City"


    When the Prophet Muhammad and his companions settled at
    Yathrib, this city changed its name, and henceforth was called,
    Al-Medina, Al-Munawara, the Illuminated City, or more shortly, Medina,
    the City. It is situated about eleven-day's journey to the north of
    Mecca. At that time it was ruled by two Kahtanite tribes, Aws and
    Khazraj. These two tribes, however, were constantly quarreling among
    themselves. It was only about that time when the Prophet announced his
    mission at Mecca that these tribes, after long years of continuous
    warfare, entered on a period of comparative peace. When the Prophet
    settled at Medina, the tribes of Aws and Khazraj forgot entirely their
    old feuds and were united together in the bond of Islam. Their old
    divisions were soon effaced and the Ansar", the Helpers of the Prophet,
    became the common designation of all Medinites who had helped the
    Prophet in his cause. Those who emigrated with him from Mecca received
    the title of "Muhajereen" or the Emigrants. The Prophet, in order to
    unite both classes in closer bonds, established between them a
    brotherhood, which linked them together as children of the same
    parents, with the Prophet as their guardian.

    Allah's Apostle Settles in Madina

    The first step the Prophet took, after his settlement
    at Medina, was to built a mosque for the worship of Allah according to
    principles of Islam. Also, houses for the accommodation of the
    emigrants were soon erected.

    Muhammad's Charter -
    Jews and Muslims unite to defend against enemies

    Medina and its suburb were at this time inhabited by
    three distinct parties, the Emigrants, the Helpers, and the Jews. In
    order to weld them together into an orderly federation, the Prophet
    granted a charter to the people, clearly defining their rights and
    obligations. This charter represented the framework of the first
    commonwealth organized by the Prophet. It started thus: 'In the name of
    he Most Merciful and Compassionate Lord, this charter is given by
    Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah to all believers, whether of Quraish
    or Medina, and all individuals of whatever origin who have made common
    cause with them, who shall all constitute one nation."

    The following are some extracts from the charter: The
    state of peace and war shall be common to all Muslims; no one among
    them shall have the right of concluding peace with, or declaring war
    against, the enemies of his co-religionists. The Jews who attach
    themselves to our commonwealth shall be protected from all insults and
    vexations; they shall have an equal right with our people to our
    assistance and good offices. The Jews of the various branches and all
    others doiciled in Medina shall form with the Muslims one composite
    nation; they shall practice their religion as freely as the Muslims.
    The allies of the Jews shall enjoy the same security and freedom. The
    guilty shall be pursued and punished. The Jews shall join the Muslims
    in defending Medina all enemies. The interior of Medina shall be a
    sacred place for all who accept this charter. All true Muslims shall
    hold in abhorrence every man guilty of crime, injustice or disorder; no
    one shall uphold the culpable, though he be his nearest kin.

    After dealing with the interior management of the
    State, the charter concluded as follows: "All future disputes arising
    among those who accept this charter shall be referred, under Allah to
    the Prophet."

    Thus this charter put an end to the state of anarchy
    that prevailed among the Arabs. It constituted the Prophet Muhammad as
    chief magistrate of the nation.

    Charter faces Mutiny
    (Inside enemies) - The Hypocrites and unsatisfied Jews

    The party of the Ansars, or Helpers, included some
    lukewarm converts who retained an ill-concealed predilection for
    idolatry. These were headed by Abdullah Ibn Ubai, a man with some
    claims to distinction. They ostensibly joined Islam, but in secret were
    disaffected. They often were a source of considerable danger to the
    newborn commonwealth and required unceasing watchfulness on the part of
    the Prophet. Towards them he always showed the greatest patience and
    forbearance, hoping in the end to win them over to the faith, which
    expectations were fully justified by the result. While the death of
    Abdullah Ibn Ubai, his party which were known as the party of the
    "Munafiqeen" (the Hypocrites) disappeared.

    The Jews who constituted the third party of the
    Medinites were, however, the most serious element of danger. No
    kindness or generous treatment on the part of the Prophet would seem to
    satisfy them. They soon broke off and ranged themselves with the
    enemies of the new faith. They did not hesitate to declare openly that
    they preferred idolatry, with its attendant evils, to the faith of
    Islam. Thus, the Prophet had to keep an eye on his enemies outside
    Medina, on the one hand, and those within the city on the other. The
    Meccans who had sworn Muhammad's death were well acquainted, thanks to
    the party of the Hypocrites and of the Jews at Medina, with the real
    forces of the Muslims. They also knew that the Jews had accepted
    Muhammad's alliance only from motives of temporary expedience and that
    they would break away from him to join the idolaters as soon as the
    latter showed themselves in the vicinity of Medina. The safety of the
    state required the proscription of the traitors who were secretly
    giving information to the common enemy. About six men were executed for
    high treason of this nature.

    Madina under Sabotage
    style attacks on Food, Cattle etc...

    Towards the second year of the hijrah, the idolaters of
    Mecca began a series of hostile acts against the Muslims of Medina.
    They sent men in parties to commit depredations on the fruit trees of
    the Muslims of Medina and to carry away their flocks. Now came the
    moment of severest trial to Islam. It became the duty of the Prophet to
    take serious measures to guard against any plot rising from within or a
    sudden attack from without.

    Battle of Badr -
    Makkan Troop formations approaching Madina

    Allah's Prophet put Medina in a state of military
    discipline. He had to send frequent reconnoitering parties to guard
    against any sudden onslaught. No sooner did the Prophet organize hi
    state than a large well-equipped army of the Meccans was afield. A
    force constituting of one thousand men marched under Abu Jahl, a great
    enemy of Islam, towards Medina to attack the city. The Muslims received
    timely notice of their enemies' intention. A body of three hundred
    adherents, of whom two thirds were citizens of Medina, was gathered to
    forestall the idolaters by occupying the valley of Badr, situated near
    the sea between Mecca and Medina. When the Prophet saw the army of the
    infidels approaching the valley, he prayed that the little band of
    Muslims might not be destroyed.

    Victory - Battle Badr is Won

    The army of the Meccans advanced into the open space
    which separated the Muslims from the idolaters. According to Arab
    usage, the battle was began by simple combats. The engagement that
    became general. The result of the battle was that the Meccans were
    driven back with great loss. Several of their chiefs were slain,
    including Abu Jahl.

    Allah's Apostle set
    rules for treatment of POWs

    A large number of idolaters remained prisoners in
    the hands of the Muslims. They were, contrary to all usage and
    traditions of the Arabs, treated with the greatest humanity.

    The
    Prophet gave strict orders that sympathy should be shown to them in
    their misfortune and that they should be treated with kindness. These
    instructions were faithfully obeyed by the Muslims to whose care the
    prisoners were confided. Dealing with this event, Sir William Muir, in
    his book Life of Muhammad, quotes one of the prisoners saying:
    "Blessing be on the men of Medina; they made us ride, while they
    themselves walked; they gave us wheaten bread to eat, when there was
    little of it, contenting themselves with dates."

    Almighty Allah said:

    "And Allah has already made
    you victorious at Badr, when you were a weak little force. So fear
    Allah much (abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has
    forbidden and love Allah much, perform all kinds of good deeds which He
    has ordained) that you may be grateful. (Remember) when you (Muhammad)
    said to the believers, "is it not enough for you that your Lord (Allah)
    should help you with three thousand angels; sent down? Yes, if you hold
    on to patience and piety, and the enemy comes rushing at you; your Lord
    will help you with five thousand angels having marks of distinction.
    Allah made it not but as a message of good news for you and as an
    assurance to your hearts. And there is no victory except from Allah the
    All Mighty, the All Wise. That He might cut off a part of those who
    disbelieve, or expose them to infamy, so that they retire frustrated."
    (Ch 3:123-127 Quran).



    The
    remarkable circumstances, which led to the victory
    of Badr, and results, which followed from it, made a deep impression on
    the minds of the Muslims; the angels of the heaven had battled on their
    side against their enemies. The division of the spoils created some
    dissension between the Muslim warriors. For the moment, the Prophet
    divided it equally among all. Subsequently, a Qur'an revelation laid
    down a rule for future division of the spoils. According to this rule,
    a fifth was reserved for the public treasury for the support of the
    poor and indigent, while the distribution of the remaining four fifths
    was left to the discretion of the Chief of the State.

    Makkan Avenge Loss in
    Badr - Battle of Uhud

    The next battle between the Quraish and the Muslims was
    the battle of Uhud, a hill about four miles to the north of Medina. The
    idolaters, to revenge their loss at Badr, made tremendous preparations
    for a new attack upon the Muslims. They collected an army of three
    thousand strong men, of whom seven hundred were armed with coats of
    mail, and two hundred horses. These forces advanced under the conduct
    of Abu Sufyan and encamped at a village six miles from Medina, where
    they gave themselves up to spoiling the fields and flocks of the
    Medinites. The Prophet, being much inferior to his enemies in number,
    at first determined to keep himself within the town and to receive them
    there; but afterwards, the advice of some of his companions prevailing
    he marched out against them at the head of one thousand men, of whom
    one hundred were armed with coats of mail; but he had no more than one
    horse, besides his own, in his whole army. With these forces he halted
    at Mount Uhud. He was soon abandoned by Abdullah Ibn Ubai, the leader
    of the Hypocrites, with three hundred of his followers. Thus, the small
    force of the Prophet was reduced to seven hundred.

    At Mount Uhud the Muslim troops passed the night, and
    in the morning, after offering their prayers, they advanced into the
    plain. The Prophet contrived to have the hill at his back, and, the
    better to secure his men from being surrounded, he placed fifty archers
    on the height in the rear, behind the troops, and gave them strict
    orders not to leave their posts whatever might happen. When they came
    to engage, the Prophet had superiority at first. But afterward, his
    archers left their position for the sake of plunder, thus allowing the
    enemy to attack the Muslims in the fear and surround them. The Prophet
    lost the day and very nearly lost his life. He was struck down by a
    shower of stones and wounded in the face by two arrows, and one of his
    front teeth was broken. Of the Muslims, seventy men were killed, among
    whom was the Prophet's uncle Hamza. Of the infidels, twenty-two men
    were lost.

    Exhausted Quraish
    leave Madina victorious

    The Quraish were too exhausted to follow up their
    advantage, either by attacking Medina or by driving the Muslims from
    the heights of Uhud. They retreated from the Medinite territories after
    barbarously mutilating the corpses of their dead enemies.

    Almighty Allah said:

    "So do not become weak (against
    your enemy), nor be sad, and you will be superior (in victory) if you
    are indeed (true) believers. If a wound (and killing ) has touched you,
    be sure a similar wound (and killing) has touched the others. And so
    are the days (good and not so good), We give to men by turns, that
    Allah may test those who believe, and that He may take martyrs from
    among you. And Allah likes not the Zalimeen (polytheists and
    wrongdoers).

    And that Allah may test (or purify) the believers
    (from sins) and destroy the disbeliveers. Do you think that you will
    enter Paradise before Allah tests those of you who fought (in His
    Cause) and (also) tests those who are patient? You did indeed wish for
    death (Ash-shahadah- martyrdom) before you met it. Now you have seen it
    openly with your own eyes." (Ch 3:139-143 Quran)

    Allah the Exalted also said:

    "We shall cast terror
    into the hearts of those who disbelieve, because they joined others in
    worship with Allah for which He has sent no authority; their abode will
    be the Fire and how evil is the abode of the Zalimeen (polytheists and
    wrong-doers). And Allah did indeed fulfil His Promise to you when you
    were killing them (your enemy) with His Permission; until (the moment)
    you lost your courage and fell to disputing about the order, and
    disobeyed after He showed you (of the booty) which you love. Among you
    are some that desire this world and some that desire the Hereafter.
    Then He made you flee from them (your enemy), and He might test you.
    But surely, He forgave you, and Allah is most Gracious to the believers.

    And remember when you ran away (dreadfully) without
    even a casting a side-glance at anyone, and the Messenger (Muhammad)
    was in your rear calling you back. There did Allah give you one
    distress after another by way of requital to teach you not to grieve
    for that which had escaped you, nor that which had befallen you. And
    Allah is Well Aware of all that you do.

    Then after the distress, He sent down security for
    you. Slumber overtook a party of you, while another party was thinking
    about themselves (as how to save their ownselves, ignoring the others
    and the Prophet) and thought wrongly of Allah - the thought of
    ignorance. They said, "Have we any part in the affair?" Say you (O
    Muhammad): "Indeed the affair belongs wholly to Allah." They hide
    within themselves what they dare not reveal to you, saying: "If we had
    anything to do with the affair, none of us would have been killed
    here." Say: "Even if you had remained in your homes, those for whom
    death was decreed would certainly have gone forth to the place of their
    death," but that Allah might test what is in your breasts; and to Mahis
    (to test, to purify, to get rid of) that which was in your hearts
    (sins), and Allah is All Knower of what is in (your) breasts." (Ch
    3:151-154 Quran).

    Narrated Al-Baraa' Ibn Azib: "The Prophet appointed
    Abdullah Ibn Jubair as the commander of the infantry men (archers) who
    were fifty on the day (of the battle) of Uhud. He instructed them:
    'Stick to your place, and don't leave it even if you see birds
    snatching us, till I send for you; and if you see that we have defeated
    the infidels and made them flee, even then you should not leave your
    place till I send for you.' Then the infidels were defeated. By Allah I
    saw the women fleeing lifting up their clothes revealing their leg
    bangles and their legs. So, the companions of Abdullah Ibn Jubair said:
    "The booty! O people, the booty! Your companions have become
    victorious, what are you waiting for now?" Abdullah Ibn Jubair said:
    "Have you forgotten what Allah's Messenger said to you?" They replied:
    "By Allah! We will go to the people (the enemy) and collect our share
    from the war booty." But when they went to them, they were forced to
    turn back defeated. At that time Allah's Messenger in their rear was
    calling them back. Only twelve men remained with the Prophet, and the
    infidels martyred seventy men from us.

    "The Prophet and his companions caused the Pagans to
    lose one hundred and forty men, seventy of whom were captured and
    seventy were killed. Then Abu Sufyan asked three times: 'Is Muhammad
    present among these people?' The Prophet ordered his companions not to
    answer him. Then he asked three times: 'Is Ibn Abu Quhafa present
    amongst these people?' He asked again three times: 'Is Ibn Al Khattab
    present among these people?' He then returned to his companions and
    said: 'As for these (men), they have been killed.' 'Umar could not
    control himself and said to Abu Sufyan: ' You told a lie, by Allah! O
    enemy of Allah! All those you have mentioned are alive, and the thing
    which will make you unhappy is still there.' Abu Sufyan said: 'Our
    victory today compensates for yours in the Battle of Badr, and in war
    (the victory) is always undecided and is shared in turns by the
    belligerents. You will find some of your killed men mutilated, but I
    did not urge my men to do so, yet I do not feel sorry for their deed.'
    After that he started reciting cheerfully: 'O Hubal, be superior!' On
    that the Prophet said (to his companions): 'Why don't you answer
    hiback?' They said: 'O Allah's Messenger! What shall we say?' He said:
    'Say, Allah is Higher and more Sublime.' Then Abu Sufyan said: 'We have
    the idol of Al-Uzza, and you have no 'Uzza.' The Prophet said (to his
    companions): 'Why don't you answer him back?' They asked: 'O Allah's
    Messenger! What shall we say?' He said: 'Say Allah is our Helper and
    you have no helper.'" (Sahih Al Bukhari)

    The moral effect of this disastrous battle was such as
    to encourage some neighboring nomad tribes to make forays upon the
    Medinte territories, but most of these were repelled.

    More Mutiny as Charter
    members cause dissent

    The Jews also were not slow to involve in trouble the
    Prophet and his followers. They tried to create disaffection among his
    people and slandered him and his adherents. They mispronounced the
    words of the Qur'an so as to give them an offensive meaning. They also
    caused their poets, who were superior in culture and intelligence, to
    use their influence to sow sedition among the Muslims. One of their
    distinguished poets, called Ka'b, of the Bani An-Nadir, spared no
    efforts in publicly deploring the ill success of the idolaters after
    their defect at Badr.

    By his satires against the Prophet and his disciples,
    and his elegies on the Meccans who had fallen at Badr, Ka'b succeeded
    in exciting the Quraish to that frenzy of vengeance which broke out at
    Uhud. He then returned to Medina, where he continued to attack the
    Prophet and the Muslims, men and women, in terms of the most obscene
    character. Though he belonged to the tribe of Bani An Nadir, which had
    entered into the compact with the Muslims and pledged itself both for
    the internal and external safety of the State, he openly directed his
    acts against the commonwealth of which he was a member.

    Another Jew, Sallam by name, of the same tribe, behaved
    equally fiercely and bitterly against the Muslims. He lived with a
    party of his tribe at Khaibar, a village five days' journey northwest
    of Medina. He made every effort to excite the neighboring Arab tribes
    against the Muslims. The Muslim commonwealth with the object of
    securing safety among the community, passed a sentence of outlawry upon
    Ka'b and Sallam.

    The members of another Jewish tribe, namely Bani
    Qainuqa', were sentenced to expulsion from the Medinite territory for
    having openly and knowingly infringed the terms of the compact. It was
    necessary to put an end to their hostile actions of the sake of
    maintaining peace and security. The Prophet had to go to their
    headquarters, where he required them to enter definitively into the
    Muslim commonwealth by embracing Islam or to leave Medina. To this they
    replied in the most offensive terms: "You have had a quarrel with men
    ignorant of the art of war. If you are desirous of having any dealings
    with us, we shall show you that we are men." They then shut themselves
    up in their fortress and set the Prophet and his authority at defiance.
    The Muslims decided to reduce them and laid siege to their fortress
    without loss of time. After fifteen days they surrendered. Though the
    Muslims at first intended to inflict some severe punishment on them,
    they contented themselves by banishing the Bani Qainuqa'.

    The Bani An-Nadir had now behaved in the same way as
    Bani Qainuqa'. The had likewise, knowingly and publicly, disregarded
    the terms of the Charter. The Prophet sent them a message similar to
    that which was sent to their brethren, the Qainuqa'. Then, relying on
    the assistance of the Hypocrites' party, returned for a defiant reply.
    After a siege of fifteen days, they sued for terms. The Muslims renewed
    their previous offer, and the Jews of An Nadir chose to execute Medina.
    They were allowed to take with them all their movable property, with
    the exception of their arms. Before leaving Medina, they destroyed all
    their dwellings in immovable property and arms which they could not
    carry away with them were distributed by the Prophet with the consent
    of the Ansar and the Emigrants. A principle was henceforth adopted that
    any acquisition not made in actual warfare should belong to that state
    and that its disposal should be left to the discretion of the ruling
    authorities.

    Almighty Allah said: (And there is also a share in
    this booty) for the poor emigrants, who were expelled from their homes
    and their property, seeking Bounties from Allah and to please Him. And
    helping Allah (helping His Religion) and His Messenger (Muhammad). Such
    are indeed the truthful (to what we say); and those who, before them,
    had homes (in Al Madina) and had adopted the Faith, love, those who
    emigrate to them, and have no jealousy in their breasts for that which
    they have been given (from the booty of Bani An Nadir), and give them
    (emigrants) preference over themselves, even though they were in need
    of that. And whosoever is saved from his own covetousness, such are
    they who will be the successful." (Ch 59:8-9 Quran)

    The expulsion of the Bani An-Nadir took place in the
    fourth year of the hijrah. The remaining portion of this year and the
    early part of the next were passed in repressing the hostile attempts
    of the nomadic tribes against the Muslims and inflicting punishment for
    various murderous forays on the Medinite territories. Of this nature
    was the expedition against the Christian Arabs of Dumat Al Jandal (a
    place about seven days' journey to the south of Damascus), who had
    stopped the Medinites traffic with Syria and even threatened a raid
    upon Medina. These marauders, however, fled on the approach of the
    Muslims, and the Prophet returned to Medina after concluding a treaty
    with a neighboring chief, to whom he granted permission of pasturage in
    the Medinite territories.

    Enemy's Army (headed
    by Abu Sufyan) march towards Madina

    In the same year, the enemies of Islam made every
    possible attempt to stir up the tribes against the Muslims. The Jews
    also took an active, if hidden, part in those intrigues. An army of ten
    thousand well-equipped men, marched towards Medina under the command of
    Abu Sufyan. They encamped near Mount Uhud, a few miles from the city.
    The Muslims could gather only an army of three thousand men. Seeing
    their inferiority in numbers on the one hand, and the turbulence of the
    Hypocrites within the town on the other, they preferred to remain on
    the defensive. They dug a deep moat round the unprotected quarters of
    Medina and encamped outside the city with a trench in front of them.
    They relied for safety of the other side upon their allies, the
    Quaraiza, who possessed several fortresses at a short distance towards
    the south and were bound by the compact to assist the Muslim s against
    any raiders. These Jews, however, were induced by the idolaters to
    violate their pledge and to join the Quraish. As these Jews were
    acquainted with the Hypocrites within the walls of the city were
    waiting for an opportunity to play their part, the situation of the
    Muslims was most dangerous.

    The siege had already lasted for twenty days. The enemy
    made great efforts to cross the trench, but every attempt was fiercely
    repulsed by the small Muslim force. Disunion was now rife in the midst
    of the besieging army. Their horses were perishing fast, and provisions
    were becoming less every day. During the night, a storm of wind and
    rain caused their tents to be overthrown and their lights extinguished.
    Abu Sufyan and the majority of his army fled, and the rest took refuge
    with the Quraiza. The Muslims, though they were satisfied with the
    failure of their enemies, could not help thinking that the victory was
    unsatisfactory so long as the Quraiza, who had violated their sworn
    pledge, remained so near. The Jews might at any time surprise Medina
    from their side. The Muslims felt it their duty to demand an
    explanation of the violation of the pledge. This was utterly refused.
    Consequently, the Jews were besieged and compelled to surrender at
    discretion. They only asked that their punishment should be left to the
    judgment of Sa'd Ibn Mu'adh, the prince of the tribe of Aws. This
    chief, who was a fierce soldier, had been wounded in the attack, and,
    indeed, died of his wounds the following day. Infuriated by the
    treacherous conduct of the Bani Quraiza, he gave judgment that the
    fighting men should be to death and that the women and children should
    become the slaves of the Muslims. The sentence was carried into
    execution.

    The Prophet protects
    the Christians of Madina

    It was about this time that the Prophet granted to the
    monks of the Monastry of St. Catherine, near Mount Sinai, his liberal
    charter by which they secured for the Christians noble and generous
    privileges and immunities. He undertook himself and enjoined his
    followers, to protect the Christians, to defend their churches and the
    residences of their priests and to guard them from all injuries. They
    were not to be unfairly taxed; no bishop was to be driven out of his
    diocese; nor Christian was to be forced to reject his religion; no monk
    was to be expelled from his Monastry; no pilgrim was to be stopped from
    his pilgrimage; nor were the Christian churches to be pulled down for
    the sake of building mosques or houses for the Muslims. Christian women
    married to Muslims were to enjoy their own religion and not to be
    subjected to compulsion or annoyance of any kind. If the Christians
    should stand in need of assistance for the repair of their churches or
    monasteries, or any other matter pertaining to their religion, the
    Muslims were to assist them. This was not to be considered as
    supporting their religion, but as simply rendering them assistance in
    special circumstances. Should the Muslims be engaged in hostilities
    with outside Christians, no Christian resident among the Muslims should
    be treated with contempt on account of his creed. The Prophet declared
    that any Muslim violating any clause of the charter should be regarded
    as a transgressor of Allah's commandments, a violator of His testament
    and neglectful of His faith.

    The Treaty of Hudaibiya

    Six years had already elapsed since the Prophet and his
    Meccan followers had fled from their birthplace. Their hearts began to
    yearn for their homes and for their Sacred House the Ka'ba. As the
    season of the pilgrimage approached, the Prophet announced his
    intention to visit the holy center, and numerous voices of his
    disciples responded to the call. Preparations were soon made for the
    journey to Mecca. The Prophet, accompanied by seven or eight hundred
    Muslims, Emigrants and Ansars, all totally unarmed, set out on the
    pilgrimage. The Quraish, who were still full of animosity towards the
    Muslims, gathered a large army to prevent them from entering Mecca and
    maltreated the envoy whom the Prophet had sent to ask permission to
    visit the holy places. After much difficulty, a treaty was concluded by
    which it was agreed that all hostilities should cease for ten years;
    that anyone coming from the Quraish to the Prophet without the
    permission of the guardian or chief should be given back to the
    idolaters; that any Muslim persons going over to the Meccans should not
    be surrendered; that any tribe desirous of entering into alliance,
    either with the Quraish or with the Muslims, should be at liberty to do
    so without disputes; that the Muslims should go back to Medina on the
    present occasion and stop advancing further; that they should be
    permitted in the following year to visit Mecca and to remain there for
    three days with the arms they used on journeys, namely, their scimitars
    in sheaths.

    The Treaty of Hudaibiya thus ended, the Prophet
    returned with his people to Medina.

    Prophet Muhammad
    dispatches envoys

    About this time it was revealed to the Prophet that his
    mission should be universal. He dispatched several envoys to invite the
    neighboring sovereigns to Islam. The embassy to the king of Persia,
    Chosroes Parvis, was received with disdain and contumely. He was
    haughtily amazed at the boldness of the Mecca fugitive in addressing
    him on terms of equality. He was so enraged that he tore up into pieces
    the Prophet's letter of invitation to Islam and dismissed the envoy
    from his presence with great contempt. When the Prophet received
    information on this treatment, he calmly observed: "Thus will the
    Empire of Chosroes be torn to pieces."

    Heraclius submits to
    Almighty God and embraces Islam

    The embassy to Heraclitus, the Emperor of the Romans,
    was received much more politely and reverentially. He treated the
    ambassador with great respect and sent the Prophet a gracious reply to
    his message.

    Another envoy was sent to an Arab price of the
    Ghassanite tribe, a Christian feudatory of Heraclius. This prince,
    instead of receiving the envoy with any respect, cruelly murdered him.
    This act caused great consternation among the Muslims, who considered
    it as an outrage of international obligations.

    Narrated Abdullah Ibn Abbas: Abu Sufyan Ibn Harb
    informed me that Heraclius had sent a messenger to him while he had
    been accompanying a caravan from Quraish. They were merchants doing
    business in Sham (Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, and Jordan) at the time
    when Allah's Messenger had a truce with Abu Sufyan and Quraish
    infidels. So Abu Sufyan and his companions went to Heraclius at Ilya
    (Jerusalem).

    Heraclitus called them in the court and he had all the
    senior Roman dignitaries around him. He called for his translator who,
    translating Heraclius's question, said to them: "Who among you is
    closely related to that man who claims to be a Prophet?" Abu Sufyan
    replied: "I am the nearest relative to him (amongst the group)."

    Heraclius said: "Bring him (Abu Sufyan) close to me and
    make his companions stand behind him." Abu Sufyan added: "Heraclius
    told his translator to tell my companions that he wanted to put some
    questions to me regarding that man (The Prophet) and if I told a lie
    they (my companions) should contradict me. By Allah! Had I not been
    afraid of my companions labeling me a liar, I would have not have
    spoken the truth about the Prophet." Abu Sufyan's narration continues:

    "The first question he asked me about him was;

    What is his family status among you?"

    "I replied: "He belongs to a good noble family amongst
    us."

    Heraclius further asked: "Has anybody among you ever
    claimed the same (to be a Prophet) before him?"

    I replied: "No."

    He said: "Was anybody amongst his ancestors a king?"

    I replied: "No."

    Heraclius asked: "Do the nobles or the poor follow him?"

    I replied: "It is the poor who follow him."

    He said: "Are his followers increasing or decreasing
    (day by day)?"

    I replied: "They are increasing."

    He then asked: "Does anybody amongst those who embrace
    his religion become displeased and renounce the religion afterwards?"

    I replied: "No."

    Heraclius said: "Have you ever accused him of telling
    lies before his claim (to be a Prophet)?"

    I replied: "No."

    Hereaclius said: "Does he break his promises?"

    I replied: "No. We are at truce with him but we do not
    know what he will do in it." I could not find opportunity to say
    anything against him except that.

    Heraclius asked: "Have you ever had a war with him?"

    I replied: "Yes."

    Then he said: "What was the outcome of the battles?"

    I replied: "Sometimes he was victorious and sometimes
    we."

    Heraclius said: "What does he order you to do?"

    I said: "He tells us to worship Allah and Allah alone
    and not to worship anything along with Him, and to renounce all that
    our ancestors had said. He orders us to pray, to speak the truth, to be
    chaste and to keep good relations with our kith and kin."

    Heraclius asked the translator to convey to me the
    following: "I asked you about his family and your reply was that he
    belonged to a very noble family. In fact, all the Messengers come from
    noble families among their respective peoples. I questioned you whether
    anybody else among you claimed such a thing; your reply was in the
    negative. If the answer had been in the affirmative, I would have
    thought that this man was following the previous man's statement. Then
    I asked you whether anyone of his ancestors was a king. Your reply was
    in the negative, and if it had been in the affirmative, I would have
    thought that this man wanted to take back his ancestral kingdom. I
    further asked whether he was ever accused of telling lies before he
    said what he said and your reply was in the negative. So I wondered how
    a person who does not tell a lie about others could ever tell a lie
    about Allah. I then asked you whether the rich people followed him or
    the poor. You replied that it was the poor who followed him. And, in
    fact, all the Messengers have been followed by this very class of
    people. Then I asked you whether his followers were increasing or
    decreasing. You replied that they were increasing, and, in fact, this
    is the way of true faith, till it is complete in all respects. I
    further asked you whether there was anybody, who, after embracing his
    religion, became displeased and discarded his religion. You reply was
    in the negative, and, in fact this is (the sign of) true faith, when
    its delight enters the hearts and mixes with them completely. I asked
    you whether he had ever betrayed. You replied in the negative, and
    likewise the Messengers never betray. Then I asked you what he ordered
    you to do. You replied that he ordered you to worship Allah and Allah
    alone and not to worship anything along with Him, and forbade you to
    worship idols, and ordered you to pray, to speak the truth and to be
    chaste. If what you have said is true, he will very soon occupy this
    place underneath my feet and I knew it (from the scriptures) that he
    was going to appear but I did not know that he would be from you, and
    if I could reach him definitely, I would go immediately to meet him and
    if I were with him, I would certainly wash his feet."

    Heraclius then asked for the letter addressed by
    Allah's Messenger which had been delivered by Dihya to the Governor of
    Busra, who forwarded it to Heraclius to read. The contents of the
    letter were as follows: "In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the
    Merciful. (This letter is) from Muhammad, the slave of Allah and His
    Messenger to Heraclius the ruler of Byzantine. Peace be upon him who
    follows the right path. Furthermore, I invite you to Islam, and if you
    become a Muslim you will be safe, and Allah will double your reward,
    and if you reject this invitation of Islam, you will be committing a
    sin by misguiding your subjects.

     

    And I recite to you Allah's Statement: SAY (O
    Muhammad): 'O People of the Scripture (Jews & Christians): Come to
    a word that is just between us and you, that we worship none but Allah,
    and that we associate no partners with Him and that none of us shall
    take others as lords besides Allah.' Then, if they turn away, say:
    'Bear witness that we are Muslims.' "

     

    Abu Sufyan then added: When Heraclius had finished his
    speech and had read the letter, there was a great hue and cry in the
    Royal Court. So we turned out of the court. I told my companions that
    the question of Ibn-Abi-Kabsha (the Prophet Muhammad) had become so
    prominent that even the King of Bani Al-Asfar (Byzantine) was afraid of
    him. Then I started to become sure that he (the Prophet) would be the
    conqueror in the near future till I embraced Islam (Allah guided me to
    it).

    The sub narrator added that Ibn An-Natur was the
    Governor of Ilya (Jerusalem) and Heraclius was the head of the
    Christians of Sham. Ibn An-Natur narrated that once while Heraclius was
    visiting Ilya (Jerusalem), he got up in the morning with a sad mood.
    Some of his priests asked him why he as in that mood. Hreaclius was a
    foreteller and an astrologer. He replied: "At night when I looked at
    the stars, I saw that the leader of those who practice circumcision had
    appeared (become the conqueror). Who are they who practice
    circumcision?" The people replied: "Except the Jews, nobody practices
    circumcision, so you should not be afraid of them (Jews). Just Issue
    orders to kill every Jew present in the country.'

    While they were discussing it, a messenger sent by the
    king of Ghassan to convey the news of Allah's Messenger to Heraclius
    was brought in. Having heard the news, he (Heraclius) ordered the
    people to go and see whether the messenger of Ghassan was circumcised.
    The people, after seeing him, told Heraclius that he was circumcised.
    Heraclius then asked him about the Arabs. The messenger replied: "Arabs
    also practice circumcision."

    After hearing that Heraclius remarked that sovereignty
    of the Arabs had appeared. Heraclius then wrote a letter to his friend
    in Rome who was as good as Heraclius in knowledge. Heraclius then left
    for Homs (a town in Syria) and stayed there till he received the reply
    of his letter from his friend, who agreed with him in his opinion about
    the emergence of the Prophet and the fact that he was a Prophet. On
    that, Heraclius invited all the heads of the Byzantines to assemble in
    his palace at Homs. When they assembled, he ordered that all the doors
    of his palace be closed. Then he came out and said: "O Byzantines! If
    success is your desire and if you seek right guidance and want your
    empire to remain, then give a pledge of allegiance to this Prophet
    (embrace Islam)."

    (on hearing the views of Heraclius) the people ran
    towards the gates of the palace like onagers but found the doors
    closed. Heraclius realized their hatred towards Islam and when he lost
    the hope of their embracing Islam, he ordered that they should be
    brought back in audience.

    (When they returned) he said: "What was already said
    was just to test the strength of your conviction and I have seen it."
    The people prostrated before him and became pleased with him, and this
    was the end of Heraclius's story (in connection with his faith). (Sahih
    Al-Bukhari)

    Attack from the Jews of Khaibar
    thwarted



    In the same year the Jews of Khaibar, a strongly
    fortified territory at a distance of four days' journey from Medina,
    showed implacable hatred towards the Muslims. United by alliance with
    the tribe of Ghatfan, as well as with other cognate tribes, the Jews of
    Khaibar made serious attempts to for ma coalition against the Muslims.
    The Prophet and his adherents were apprised of this movement and
    immediate measures were taken in order to repress any new attack upon
    Medina. An expedition of fourteen hundred men was soon prepared to
    march against Khaibar. The allies of the Jews left them to face the war
    with the Muslims all alone. The Jews firmly resisted the attacks of the
    Muslims, but eventually all their fortress had to be surrendered, one
    after the other to their enemies. They prayed for forgiveness, which
    was accorded to them on certain conditions. Their lands and immovable
    property were secured to them, together with the free practice of their
    religion. After subduing Khaibar, the Muslims returned to Medina in
    safety.

    Allah's Messenger and
    the Muslims perfom Hajj

    Before the end of the year, it being the seventh year
    of the hijrah, the Prophet and his adherents availed themselves of
    their armistice with the Quraish to visit the holy Ka'ba. The Prophet,
    accompanied by two hundred Muslims, went to Mecca to perform the rites
    of pilgrimage. On this occasion the Quraish evacuated the city during
    the three days which the ceremonies lasted.

    Sir William Muir, in his book, Life of
    Mohammed Vol.
    III comments on the incident as follows:

    It was surely a strange sight, which at
    this time
    presented itself at the vale of Mecca, a sight unique in the history of
    the world. The ancient city is for three days evacuated by all its
    inhabitants, high and low, every house deserted, and as they retire,
    the exiled converts, many years banished from their birth-place,
    approach in a great body accompanied by their allies, revisit the empty
    homes of their childhood, and within the short allotted space, fulfil
    the rites of pilgrimage. The outside inhabitants, climbing the heights
    around take refuge under tents or other shelter among the hills and
    glens; and clustering on the overhanging peak of Abu Qubeis, thence
    watch the movements of the visitors beneath, as with the Prophet at
    their head, they make the circuit of the Ka'ba and rapid procession
    between Essafa and Marwah, and anxiously scan every figure, if
    perchance they may recognize among the worshippers some long lost
    friend or relative. It was a scene rendered only by the throes, which
    gave birth to Islam.

    In accordance with the terms of the treaty, the Muslims
    left Mecca at the end of three day's visit. This peaceful visit was
    followed by important conversions among the Quraish. Khalid Ibn
    Al-Walid, known as the Sword of Allah, who, before this, had been a
    bitter enemy of Islam and who commanded the Quraish cavalry at Uhud;
    and Amr Ibn Al' As, another important character and warrior, adopted
    the new faith.

    Retribution for the
    Murder of the Muslim Envoy

    When the Prophet and his followers returned to Medina,
    they arranged in expedition to exact retribution from the Ghassanite
    prince who had killed the Muslim envoy. A force of three thousand men,
    under the Prophet's adopted son Zaid, was sent to take reparation from
    the offending tribe.

    Khalid Ibn Al-Walid was one of the generals chosen for
    the expedition. When they reached the neighborhood of Muta, a village
    to the southeast of the Dead Sea, they met with an overwhelming force
    of Arabs and Romans who were assembled to oppose them. The Muslims,
    however, resolved resolutely to push forward. Their courage was of no
    avail and they suffered great losses. In this battle Zaid and Ja'far, a
    cousin of the Prophet, and several other notables were killed. Khalid
    Ibn Al-Walid, by a series of maneuvers, succeeded in drawing off the
    army and conducting it without further loses to Medina. A month later,
    however, Amr Ibn Al-' As marched unopposed through the lands of the
    hostile tribes, received their submission, and restored the prestige of
    Islam on the Syrian frontier.

    Quraish violate terms
    of Hudaibiya, Prophets army march against Idolators

    About the end of the seventh year of the hijrah, the
    Quraish and their allies, the Bani Bakr, violated the terms of the
    peace concluded at Hudaibiya by attacking the Bani Khuzaah, who were in
    alliance with the Muslims. The Bani Khuzzah appealed to the Prophet for
    help and protection. The Prophet determined to make a stop to the reign
    of injustice and oppression, which had lasted so long at Mecca. He
    immediately gathered ten thousand men to march against the idolaters
    and set out on January, 630.

    After eight days the Muslims army halted, and alighted
    at Marr Az-Zahran, a day's journey from Mecca. On the night of their
    arrival, Abu Sufyan, who was delegated by the Quraish to ask the
    Prophet to abandon his project, presented himself and besought an
    interview. In the morning it was granted. "Has the time not come, O Abu
    Sufyan," said the Prophet, "for you to acknowledge that there is no
    deity save Allah and that I am His Messenger?" Abu Sufyan, after
    hesitating for awhile, pronounced the prescribed formula of belief and
    adopted Islam. He was then sent back to prepare the city for the
    Prophet's approach.

    With the exception of a slight resistance by certain
    clans headed by Ikrima and Safwan, in which many Muslims were killed,
    the Prophet entered Mecca almost unopposed. The city which had treated
    him so cruelly, driven him and his faithful band for refuge among
    strangers, the city which had sworn his life and the lives of his
    devoted adherents, now lay at his mercy. His old persecutors were now
    completely at his feet. The Prophet entered Mecca on his favorite camel
    Al Kaswa, having Usama Ibn Zaid sitting behind him. On his way he
    recited Surah Al Fath (Victory), the first verses of which maybe
    interpreted thus:

    "Verily! We have given you (O Muhammad) a
    manifest victory. That Allah may forgive you your sins of the past and
    future, and complete His Favor on you, and guide you on the Straight
    Path; and that Allah may help you with strong help. (Ch 48:1-3 Quran)

    Prophet Muhammad (saw)
    orders the destruction of the idols

    The Muslim army entered the city unpretentiously and
    peacefully. No house was robbed, no man or woman was insulted. The
    Prophet granted a general amnesty to the entire population of Mecca.
    Only four criminals, whom justice condemned, were proscribed. He did
    however, order the destruction of all idols and pagan images of
    worship, upon which three hundred and fifty idols which were in the
    Sacred House of Ka'ba were thrown down. The Prophet himself destroyed a
    wooden pigeon hung from the roof and regarded as one of the deities of
    the Quraish. During the downfall of the images and idols he was heard
    to cry aloud: "Allah is great. Truth has come and falsehood has
    vanished; verily falsehood is fleeting." The old idolaters observed
    thoughtfully the destruction of their gods, which were utterly
    powerless. After the Prophet had abolished these pagan idols and every
    pagan rite, he delivered a sermon to the assembled people. He dwelt
    upon the natural brotherhood of man in the words of the Qur'an:

    "O
    Mankind! We have created you for a male and a female, and made you into
    nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most
    honorable of you in the Sight of Allah is that (believer) who has
    At-Taqwa (one of the Muttaqun, pious, and righteous persons who fear
    Allah much, abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has
    forbidden), and love Allah much (perform all kinds of good deeds which
    He has ordained.) Verily Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware. (Ch 49:13
    Quran)

    Narrated Hisham's father: When Allah's Messenger set
    out (towards Mecca) during the year of the Conquest (of Mecca) and this
    news reached (the infidels of Quraish), Abu Sufyan, Hakim Ibn Hizam and
    Budail Ibn Waraqa came out to gather information about Allah's
    Messenger. They proceeded on their way till they reached a place called
    Marr-az-Zahran (which is near Mecca). Behold! There they saw many fires
    as if they were the fires of Arafat." Budail Ibn Waraqa' said: "Banu'
    Amr are less in number than that." Some of the guards of Allah's
    Messenger saw them and took them over, caught them, and bthem to
    Allah's Messenger. Abu Sufyan embraced Islam.

    When the Prophet proceeded, he said to Al' Abbas: "Keep
    Abu Sufyan standing at the top of the mountain so that he would look at
    the Muslims. SO Al- Abbas kept him standing (at that place) and the
    tribes with the Prophet started passing in front of Abu Sufyan in
    military batches. A batch passed in front of Abu Sufyan and said: "O
    'Abbas who are these?" 'Abbas said: "They are Banu Ghaifar." Abu Sufyan
    said: "I have got nothing to do with Ghifar." Then a batch of the tribe
    of Juhaina passed by and he said similarly as above. Then a batch of
    the tribe of Sa'd Ibn Huzaim passed by and he said similarly as above.
    Then came a batch, the like of which Abu Sufyan had not seen. He said:
    "Who are these?" Abbas said: "They are the Ansar headed by Sa'd Ibn
    'Ubada, the one holding the flag." Sa'd Ibn 'Ubada said: "O Abu Sufyan!
    Today is the day of a great battle and today (what is prohibited in
    )the Ka'ba will be permissible." Abu Sufyan said, "O Abbas! How
    excellent the day of destruction is!" Then came another batch of
    warriors which was the smallest of all the batches, and in it there was
    Allah's Messenger and his companions, and the flag of the Prophet was
    carried by Az-Zubair Ibn Al-Awwam. When Allah's Messenger passed by Abu
    Sufyan, the latter said to the Prophet: "Do you know what Sa'd Ibn
    Ubada said?" The Prophet said: "What did he say?" Abu Sufyan said: "He
    said so-and-so." The Prophet said: "Sa'd told a lie, but today Allah
    will give superiority to the Ka'ba and today the Ka'ba will be covered
    with a cloth covering." Allah's Messenger ordered that his flag be
    fixed at Al-Hajun.

    Narrated Urwa: Nafi' Ibn Jubair Ibn Mut'im said: "I
    heard Al-Abbas saying to Az-Zubair Ibn Al- Awwam, 'O Abu Abdullah! Did
    Allah's Messenger order you to fix the flag here?' "Allah's Messenger
    ordered Khalid Ibn Al-Walid to enter Mecca from its upper part from
    Kadaa' while the Prophet himself entered from Kudaa. Two men from the
    cavalry of Khalid Ibn Al-Walid named Hubaish Ibn Al Ashar and Kurz Ibn
    Jabir Al-Fihri were martyred on that day. (Sahih Al Bukhari)

    Now great multitudes came to adopt Islam and take the
    oath of allegiance to the Prophet. For this purpose an assembly was
    held at As-Safa Mountain. Umar, acting as the Prophet's deputy
    administered the oath, whereby the people bound themselves not to adore
    any deity but Allah to obey the Prophet to abstain from theft,
    adultery, infanticide, lying and backbiting. Thus was fulfilled the
    prophecy embodied in the Surah Al Fath in the Quran.

    During his stay at Mecca, the Prophet dispatched his
    principal disciples in every direction to preach Islam among the wild
    tribes of the desert and call them to the true religion of Allah. He
    sent small detachments of his troops into the suburbs who destroyed the
    temples of Al Uzza, Suwaa, and Manat, the three famous idols in the
    temples of the neighboring tribes. The Prophet gave strict orders that
    these expeditions should be carried out in a peaceable manner. These
    injunctions were obeyed in all cases, with one exception. The troops
    under Khalid Ibn Al-Walid, the fierce newly-converted warrior, killed a
    few of the Bani Jazima. When the news of this wanton bloodshed reached
    the Prophet, he was deeply grieved and exclaimed: "Oh, my Lord, I am
    innocent of what Khalid has done." He dispatched a large sum of money
    for the widows and orphans of the slain and severely rebuked Khalid.

    At this time the tribes of Hawazin and Thakif showed
    unwillingness to render obedience to the Muslims without resistance.
    They formed a league with the intention of attacking the Prophet, but
    he was vigilant enough to frustrate their plan. A big battle was fought
    with this new enemy of Islam near Hunain, a deep and narrow defile nine
    miles northeast of Mecca. The idolaters were utterly defeated. One body
    of the enemy, consisting chiefly of the Thakif tribe, took refuge in
    their fortified city of Ta'if, which eight or nine years before had
    dismissed the Prophet from within its walls with injuries and insults.
    The remainder of the defeated force, consisting principally of the
    Hawazin, sought at a camp in the valley of Autas. This camp was raided
    by the Muslim troops. The families of the Hawazin, their flocks and
    herds with all their other effects, were captured by the troops of the
    Prophet. Ta'if was then besieged for a few days only, after which the
    Prophet raised the siege, well knowing that the people of Ta'if would
    soon be forced by circumstances to submit without bloodshed. Returning
    to his camp where the prisoners of Hawazin were left safely, the
    Prophet found a deputation from this hostile tribe who begged him to
    set free their families. The Prophet replied that he was willing to
    give back his own share of those captives and that of the children of
    Abdul Muttalib, but that he could not force his followers to abandon
    the fruits of their victory. The disciples followed the generous
    example of their teacher. The hearts of several members of the Thakir
    tribe were so influenced by this that they offered their allegiance and
    soon became earnest Muslims. The Prophet now returned to Medina fully
    satisfied with the achievements of his mission.

    The ninth year of the hijrah is known as the Year of
    Embassies, as being the year in which the various tribes of Arabia
    submitted to the claim of the Prophet and sent embassies to render
    homage to him.

    These tribes had been awaiting the issue of the war
    between Muhammad and the Quraish; but as soon as the tribe - the
    principal of the whole nation and the descendants of Ishmael, whose
    prerogatives none offered to dispute - had submitted, they were
    satisfied that it was not in their power to oppose Muhammad. Hence
    their embassies flocked into Medina to make their submission to him.
    The conquest of Mecca decided the fate of idolatry in Arabia. Now
    deputations began to arrive from all sides to render the adherence to
    Islam of various tribes. Among the rest, five princes of the tribe of
    Himyar professed Islam and sent ambassadors to notify Muhammad of the
    same. These were the princes of Yemen, Mahra, Oman, and Yamama.

    The idolaters of Ta'if, the very people who had driven
    the Messenger of Islam from their midst with violence and contempt, now
    sent a deputation to pray forgiveness and ask to be numbered among his
    followers. They begged, however, for temporary preservation of their
    idols. As a last appeal they begged for one month of grace only. But
    even this was not conceded. The Prophet said Islam and the idols could
    not exist together. They then begged for exemption from the daily
    prayers. The Prophet replied that without devotion, religion would be
    nothing. At last they submitted to all that was required of them. They,
    however, asked to be exempted from destroying the idols with their own
    hands. This was granted. The Prophet selected Abu Sufyan and Mughira to
    destroy the idols of Ta'if, the chief of which was the notorious idol
    of Al-Lat. This was carried out amidst cries of despair and grief from
    the women of Ta'if.

    The conversion of this tribe of Ta'if is worthy of
    notice. This tribe, which hither to had proved hostile to the new
    faith, was noted among the Arabs for its idolatrous priesthood. A small
    detachment under Ali was sent to reduce them to obedience and to
    destroy their idols. The prince of the tribe was 'Adi, the son of the
    famous Hatim, whose generosity was spoken of all over Arabia. On the
    approach of the Muslim force, Adi fled to Syria, leaving his sister
    with his principal clansmen, to fall into the hands of the Muslims.
    These were conducted by Ali with every sign of respect and sympathy to
    Medina. When the daughter of Hatim came before the Prophet, she
    addressed him in the following words: "Messenger of Allah, my father is
    dead; my brother, my only relation fled into the mountains on the
    approach of the Muslims. I cannot ransom myself; I count on your
    generosity for my deliverance. My father was an illustrious man, the
    prince of his tribe, a man who ransomed prisoners, protected the honor
    of women, fed the poor, cothe afflicted, and was deaf to no appeal."
    The Prophet replied: "Your father had the virtues of a true Muslim; if
    it were permitted to invoke the mercy of Allah on any whose life was
    passed in idolatry, I would pray to Allah for mercy for the soul of
    Hatim." Then, addressing the Muslims around him, he said: "the daughter
    of Hatim is free, her father was a generous and humane man; Allah loves
    and rewards the merciful." With the daughter of Hatim, all her people
    were set at liberty. She proceeded to Syria and related to her brother
    the generosity of Muhammad. 'Adi, touched by gratitude, hastened to
    Medina, where he was kindly received by the Prophet. He professed Islam
    and returned to his people and persuaded them to abandon idolatry. They
    all submitted and became devoted Muslims.

    Hitherto no prohibition had been enforced against
    idolaters entering the Holy Ka'ba, or performing their abominable rites
    within the sacred precincts. Towards the end of the ninth year of the
    hijrah, during the month of pilgrimage 'Ali was delegated by the
    Prophet to read a proclamation that ran as follows: "No idolater shall
    after this year perform the pilgrimage; no one shall make the circuit
    of the Ka'ba naked (such a disgraceful custom was practiced by the
    pagan Arabs); and treaty with the Prophet shall continue in force but
    four months are allowed to every man to return to his territories;
    after that there will be no obligation on the Prophet, except towards
    those with whom treaties have been concluded."

    The vast multitude who had listened to the above
    declaration returned to their homes, and before the following year was
    over the majority of them were Muslims.

    During the tenth year of the hijrah, as in the
    preceding one, numerous embassies continued to pour into Medina from
    all parts of Arabia, to testify to the allegiance of their chiefs and
    their tribes. Teachers were sent by the Prophet into the different
    provinces to teach the new converts the principles and precepts of
    Islam. These teachers were invariably given the following injunctions
    when they were about to depart on their mission: "Deal gently with the
    people, and be not harsh; cheer them, and do not look down upon them
    with contempt. You will meet with many believers in the Holy
    Scriptures, who will ask you: 'What is the key to heaven?' Answer them
    it (the key to heaven) is to bear witness to the divine truth and to do
    good."

    Thus, the mission of the Prophet Muhammad was now
    accomplished; the whole work was achieved in his lifetime. Idolatry
    with its nameless abominations was entirely destroyed. The people who
    were sunk in superstition, cruelty, and vice in regions where spiritual
    life was utterly unknown were now united in one bond of faith, hope and
    charity. The tribes which had been from time immemorial engaged in
    perpetual wars were now united together by the ties of brotherhood,
    love, and harmony. Henceforth, their aims were not confined to this
    earth alone; but there was something beyond the grave - much higher,
    purer, and diviner - calling them to the practice of charity, goodness,
    justice, and universal love. They could now perceive that Allah was not
    that which they had carved out of wood or stone, but the Almighty
    Loving, Merciful, the Creator of the Universe.

    Prophet Muhammad's
    last Sermon, mount Arafat

    On the return of the sacred month of pilgrimage, the
    Prophet, under the presentiment of his approaching end, determined to
    make a farewell pilgrimage to Mecca. In February 632, he left Medina
    with a very considerable concourse of Muslims. It is stated that from
    ninety thousand to one hundred and forty thousand people accompanied
    the Prophet. Before completing all rites of the pilgrimage, he
    addressed the assembled multitude from the top of Mount Arafat in the
    following words:

    "O people! Listen to my words, for I know
    not whether
    another year will be vouchsafed to me after this year to find myself
    among you. Your lives and property are sacred and inviolable among one
    another until you appear before the Lord, as this day and this month
    are sacred for all; and remember, you will have to appear before your
    Lord Who will demand from you an account for all your actions. O
    people, you have rights over your wives, and your wives have a right
    over you. Verily you have taken them on the security of Allah and have
    made their people lawful unto you by the words of Allah. And your
    slaves, see that you feed them with such food as you eat yourselves,
    and clothe them with the stuff you wear, and if they commit a fault
    which you are not inclined to forgive, then part with them; for they
    are the servants of the Lord and are not to be harshly treated. O
    people, listen to my words and understand them. Know that all Muslims
    are brothers. You are one brotherhood; but no man shall take ought from
    his brother, unless by his free consent. Keep yourselves from
    injustice. Let him who is present tell this to him who is absent. It
    maybe that he who is told this afterward may remember better than he
    who has now heard it.

    The Prophet concluded his sermon by exclaiming: "O
    Lord, I have fulfilled my message and accomplished my work." The
    assembled multitude, all in one voice, cried: "Yea, verily you have."
    The Prophet again exclaimed: "O Lord, I beseech You, bear witness to
    it."

    Prophet returns to Madina

    Having rigorously performed all the ceremonies of the
    pilgrimage, that his example might be followed by all Muslims for all
    succeeding ages, the Prophet returned with his followers to Medina.

    The eleventh year of the hijrah, being the last year of
    Muhammad's life, was spent at Medina. There he settled the organization
    of the provincial and tribal communities which had adopted Islam and
    become the component parts of the Muslims federation. More officers had
    to be deputed to the interior provinces for the purpose of teaching
    their inhabitants the precepts of the religion, administering justice,
    and collecting Zakat. Muadh Ibn Jabal was sent to Yemen. On his
    departure to that distant province the Prophet enjoined him to use his
    own discretion in the event of his being unable to find express
    authority in the Quran. Ali was deputed to Yamama in the southeast of
    the peninsula. To him the Prophet said: "Never decide between any two
    parties who come to you for justice unless you first hear both of them."

    Murders and false
    claims of Prophethood arise

    A force was being prepared under Usama Ibn Zaid,
    whose father was killed at Muta, against the Byzantines, to exact the
    long-delayed reparation for the murder of the envoy to Syria. However,
    the news of the Prophet's sickness and failing health caused that
    expedition to be stopped. This news was soon noised abroad and produced
    disorder in some districts. Three pretenders had arisen who gave
    themselves out as prophets and tried by all kinds of imposture to win
    over their tribes. The most dangerous of these pretenders was known as
    Al Aswad. He was a chief of Yemen and a conjurer. He soon succeeded in
    gaining over his tribesmen and, with the help, reduced to subjection
    many of the neighboring towns. He killed Shahr, whom the Prophet had
    appointed as Governor of Sana in the place of his father Bazan, who had
    just died. Bazan had been the viceroy of Yemen under Chosroes of
    Persia; after he had adopted Islam he was allowed by the Prophet to
    remain as Governor of Yemen. He was able to convert to Islam all the
    Persian colony in that province. Al-Aswad, the conjurer, had now killed
    Shahr, but soon after he was massacred by the Persians of Yemen.

    The other two pretenders, Tulayha and Haroun by name,
    were not suppressed until after the death of the Prophet, during the
    reign of Abu Bakr. Haroun, better known as Mussaylamah, addressed to
    the Prophet a letter which ran as follows: "From Mussaylamah the
    Prophet of Allah, to Muhammad the Prophet of Allah. Peace be to you. I
    am your partner. Let the exercise of authority be divided between us.
    Half the earth will be mine, and half will belong to your Quraish. But
    the Quraish are too greedy to be satisfied with a just division." To
    this letter the Prophet replied as follows: "From Muhammad the
    Messenger of Allah to Mussaylamah the liar. Peace be to those who
    follow the right path. The earth belongs to Allah. It is He Who makes
    the reign whomsoever He pleases. Only those will prosper who fear the
    Lord."

    Prophet Muhammad's
    last days

    The health of the Prophet grew worse. His last days
    were remarkable for the calmness and serenity of his mind. He was able,
    though weak and feeble, to lead the public prayers until within three
    days of his death. He requested that he might be permitted to stay at
    'Aisha's house close to the mosque during his illness, an arrangement
    to which his other wives assented. As long as his strength lasted, he
    took part in the public prayers. The last time he appeared in the
    mosque he addressed the congregation, after the usual prayers were
    over, in the following words: "O Muslims, if I have wronged anyone of
    you, here I am to answer for it; if I owe anything to anyone, all I may
    happen to possess belongs to you." A man in the crowd rose and claimed
    three Dhirhams which he had given to a poor man at the request of the
    Prophet. They were immediately paid back with these words: "Better to
    blush in this world than in the next."

    The Prophet then prayed and implored Allah's mercy for
    those who had fallen in the persecution of their enemies. He
    recommended to all his followers the observance of religious duties and
    the leading of a life of peace and goodwill. Then he spoke with emotion
    and with a voice still so powerful as to reach beyond the outer doors
    of the mosque: "By the Lord in Whose hand lies the soul of Muhammad as
    to myself, no man can lay hold on me in any matter; I have not made
    lawful anything excepting what Allah has made lawful; nor have I
    prohibited anything but that which Allah in His Book has prohibited."

    Then turning to the women who sat close by, he
    exclaimed: "O Fatimah, my, daughter, and Safia, my aunt, work you both
    that which procure you acceptance with the Lord, for verily I have no
    power to save you in any wise." He then rose and re-entered the house
    of Aisha.

    The death of Prophet
    Muhammad, peace be upon him

    After this, the Prophet never appeared at public
    prayers. A few hours after he returned from the mosque, the Prophet
    died while laying his head on the bosom of Aisha. As soon as the
    Prophet's death was announced, a crowd of people gathered at the door
    of the house of Aisha, exclaiming: "How can our messenger be dead?"
    Umar said: "No, he is not dead; he will be restored to us, and those
    are traitors to the cause of Islam who say he is dead. If they say so
    let them be cut in pieces." But Abu Bakr entered the house at this
    moment, and after he had touched the body of the Prophet with a
    demonstration of profound affection, he appear at the door and
    addressed the crowd with the following speech: "O Muslims, if anyone of
    you has been worshipping Muhammad, then let me tell you that Muhammad
    is dead. But if you really do worship Allah then know that Allah is
    living and will never die. Do you forget the verse in the Quran:

    "Muhammad is not more than a Messenger, and indeed
    (many) Messengers
    have passed away before him. If he dies or is killed, will you then
    turn your back on your heels (as disbeliveers)? And he who turns back
    on his heels, not the least harm will he do to Allah, and Allah will
    give reward to those who are grateful." (Ch 3:144 Quran)
    .

    Upon
    hearing this speech of Abu Bakr, 'Umar acknowledged his error, and the
    crowd was satisfied and dispersed.

    Al-Abbas, the Prophet's uncle, presided at the
    preparation for the burial, and the body was duly washed and perfumed.
    There was some dispute between the Quraish and the Ansars as to the
    place of burial; however, Abu Bakr settled the dispute by affirming
    that he had heard the Prophet say that a prophet should be buried at
    the very spot where he died. A grave was accordingly dug in the ground
    within the house of Aisha and under the bed on which the Prophet died.
    In this grave the body was buried, and the usual rites were performed
    by those who were present.

    Thus ended the glorious life of that Prophet Muhammad.

    May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.

     

     

     

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