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Episode 17: The Moon Has Shone Over Us…

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On the Path of the Beloved

 

Episode 17: The moon has shone over us…

 

In the name of Allah, the All-Merciful, the Ever-Merciful. All praise be to Allah and prayers and blessings be upon His Messenger (SAWS)[1]. Today's episode consists of a summary of the Makkan phase, as well as the Prophet's arrival to Madinah, and the first two years before the Battle of Badr.

 

Let us start with a summary of the Makkan phase; which spanned 13 years and started from the beginning of the revelation until the Prophet's (SAWS) immigration. What title can we give to this phase? We can call it the story of challenge, determination, courage and persistence to shoulder the mission. We can also call it "The endurance of righteousness in countering people of interest (Quraysh)." Do you agree to this?

 

The revelation started when the Prophet (SAWS) was 40 years old. During the first three years, the Prophet bred a morally distinguished generation that was very successful in different aspects of life. This was the generation that would shoulder the responsibility of delivering the message to the whole world. This phase spanned three years, until the number of Muslims reached 300. At the end of the third year, Allah (SWT) ordered the Prophet to preach Islam publicly, which the Prophet (SAWS) did.

 

From the end of the third year until the sixth year, the disbelievers started to severely harm the Prophet and the Muslims, to the extent of killing some Muslims. At the same time, the Prophet (SAWS) established a kind of university or training course for Muslims in Darul-Arkam Ibn Abul-Arkam. In this house, Muslims had an intellectual, spiritual, moral, and political training. Such a fruitful training produced great personalities and role models that excelled politically, socially, morally, and intellectually. Amid the severe abuse of Quraysh, a gift from Allah was bestowed upon Muslims: Omar Ibnul-Khattab and Hamza Ibn- Abdel Muttalib both embraced Islam. Islam gained the support of two prominent persons, and hence, moved on to a new phase. Realizing that harming Muslims was useless; Quraysh resorted to negotiations in order to lure the Prophet (SAWS) with financial profits. Nevertheless, all this was a failure because the Prophet did not care about worldly gains.

 

Beginning the ninth year, Quraysh imposed a siege on Muslims that was to last for three complete years. During this period, the Da’wa (missionary activity) was essentially frozen, as a test for the persistence of the Prophet and his companions. Shortly after; Abu Taleb died; immediately followed by Khadija. The Prophet became convinced that Makkah can no longer be a refuge for him. He started looking for protection and support in another place. He endured a fruitless journey to al-Taif. He tried in vain to communicate with 26 tribes to gain support. In the eleventh year, al-Ansaar (Muslims of Madinah) embraced Islam; and in the twelfth year they acknowledged him as their leader in the Main Pledge of al-‘Aqaba. They agreed that the Prophet immigrate to their city, where he will be consigned as their leader. The Prophet was assigned as leader by the majority; and hence, there was a new home for Muslims in Madinah. In the thirteenth year, the Prophet (SAWS) immigrated to Madinah.

 

What are the lessons that one can derive from all these events? Let's deduce some lessons and relate them to our life:

 

1 The Prophet and his companions embraced the great message of reforming the world. They shouldered the mission, and the message filled their hearts. Consequently, they sacrificed for it. Is it possible that the idea of our nation's revival fill the minds and hearts of the millions who listen to us now?

 

2 Patience, persistence, determination, sacrifice, blood, death and fear: all these form the everlasting stories of those who held the message of reform like Somaya and Belal. To those who say that they want to pursue the path of the beloved and contribute to a revival, are you ready to make such a sacrifice?

 

3 The intellectual preparation and training of a new generation: training is crucial for a generation that wants to reform. Youth should have comprehensive training if we want a revival in the nation.

 

4 Smart, flexible initiative planning: the divine revelation played no role in planning; it only explained the guidelines to be followed, i.e. the Holy Qur'an. The miracles were a means to elevate the morale and support the believers. Only patience and planning can change the course of events. We have to think and plan together for Allah to support us. We have the Qur'an, our guidebook.

 

5 Coexisting with non Muslims: Muslims were not isolated; they merged with the society and mingled with non Muslims. There can be no revival if we do not co-exist with the others.

 

6 Controlling oneself despite oppression: this saves your society from destruction. No companion ever attacked Abu-Jahl, for example. Violence was never the course of the Prophets.

 

7 Women play a vital role that is sometimes more important than that of men: examples include, Asma', Khadijah, and Omar's sister. There can be no revival unless women claim the rights given to them by Islam.

 

8 Despite planning, mistakes can occur: this teaches us that the Prophet's experience was a human one that could have shortcomings or mistakes. Failure can lead to success. Hence, don’t be too idealistic.

 

9 Hope is very significant in the Prophet's biography: for 13 years, it was tough on the Prophet (SAWS). Remember, the two caves were so narrow and dark; nevertheless, they led to victory and light. Muslims around the world: you should be optimistic, and know that there is no room for despair, no matter what happens.

 

10 Trusting in Allah and depending on Him: usually those who are good at planning do not know how to depend on Allah. In contrast, Muslims who depend on Allah do not know how to plan. Our Prophet was good at both.

 

11 Morals: faithfulness, honesty, loyalty, proficiency: there can be no revival without these four.

 

12 The Makkan phase highlighted a very important principle: Quraysh refused the Prophet's message, not because they were not convinced, but because of personal interests. Don't you ever allow your personal interest to precede righteousness and truth. Always remember surat Al-Masad.

 

Now the Prophet is on his way to Madinah, where the Message would continue for ten years; a new phase of the Prophet's life that goes on until his death. We can title this phase as: “Establishing a Home.” There were still some Muslims in Makkah who did not leave for Madinah, either because they were weak and couldn’t escape, or because of some interests. There were also some non- Muslims who still loved the Prophet and wished to support him, like Bani Hashem and al-Abbas Ibn Abdel Motaleb (the Prophet's uncle). Later on, the Prophet (SAWS) would go in fierce battles against Makkah. Nevertheless, Makkan Muslims would only support the Prophet with their hearts. The Prophet never used them in his wars against Makkah, nor did he ask them to make any disturbance. No one of these men ever committed any military or violent act against Quraysh. This is because the Prophet respected the values of the society where they lived; the Prophet respected the right of citizenship, and the Muslims living in Makkah respected the values and principles of their society, even if they did not agree to these values. Nowadays, Muslims living in the West should similarly respect the rights and duties of citizenship. In the Battle of Badr, Quraysh forced the Makkan Muslims and Bani Hashim to join them in fighting the Prophet. The Prophet knew that they were forced, and asked the Muslim fighters not to kill al-Abbas if they saw him. The Prophet (SAWS) applied the code of citizenship in Madinah. He treated the Jews like the Muslims, and gave them the same rights and duties. He only fought the Jews when they violated the frame of the values of society. Wars against the Jews were never initiated out of vengeance, hatred or extremism.

 

Before reaching Madinah, the Prophet (SAWS) went to Qiba', ten kilometers away from Madinah, where he stayed for four days. Upon his arrival, he built the first Masjid (mosque) in Islam. He built it by himself with Abu Bakr, Ali, and the people of Qiba', to gain thawab (rewarded) from Allah (SWT). The Prophet (SAWS) said, " He who performs ablution at his house and goes to Qiba' mosque to pray, is rewarded by Allah with the credit of performing Umrah."[2] In this Masjid, the Revelation came to the Prophet with an Ayah that can be translated as, "Indeed a Masjid that was founded on piety from the first day is worthier for you to rise up therein; in it are men who love to purify themselves" (TMQ, 108:9)[3]. Back in Makkah, Ali Ibn-Abu-Taleb was worried about the Prophet. Therefore, after returning the entrusted deposits to the people of Quraysh, he left for Qiba’; running for nearly 500 km in order to join the Prophet (SAWS). His feet were bleeding and he was so worn out that the Prophet felt mercy towards him.

 

Al-Zoubayr Ibn-Al-Awaam was at Madinah, but he went out to Qiba’ to receive the Prophet (SAWS). He bought two new white garments for the Prophet (SAWS) and Abu-Bakr (RA); for he wanted them to appear in the best form when they first enter Madinah. The people of Madinah were eagerly expecting the Prophet’s arrival. However, they did not know the exact time of his arrival. When the Prophet (SAWS) first entered Madinah, the people were extremely happy. Moreover, one of them improvised a song at this moment to welcome the Prophet (SAWS), then all the people started to sing with him. They said:

 

The moon has shone over us,

 

From the valley of Wadaa.’

 

And we owe it to show gratefulness,

 

Where the call is to Allah.

 

O Messenger of Allah! You came to us with a message that we will obey,

 

You have brought to the city nobleness,

 

welcome O best caller to Allah‘s way.

 

Notice that the people received the Prophet (SAWS) with a song, not with some ayahs from the Qur’an. Nevertheless, the Prophet (SAWS) was not angry. This incident indicates the high value of the useful types of art in Islam.

 

All the people wanted the Prophet (SAWS) to stay at their homes, so they held the bridle of his camel. He asked them to leave it; for the camel was heavenly inspired to stop at a specific place (the place where the Prophet’s Masjid was built). The Prophet (SAWS) stood where the camel kneeled down, and he started his first speech to be given in Madinah. He said, “O’ people, spread peace among yourselves, feed the poor, keep the kinship ties, and pray at night while people are sleeping, so that you may enter paradise serenely.”[4] The Prophet’s speech is a religious, a political, and a social speech at the same time! It sets particular rules that match the current conditions of the society at that time. The society needed peace after the long years of war, strong kinship ties after the al-Auws and al-Khazraj conflicts; feeding the poor after the coming of al-Muhajireen (immigrants) to Madinah, and it also needed sincere worship for Allah (AW).[5] Do you realize now how great your Prophet was?

 

The Prophet (SAWS) stayed for a month at the house of Abu- Ayyub al-Ansari. He was from Bany-Annajar tribe. They are the uncles of the Prophet’s father. Note the importance of kinship ties in Islam. Now, Imagine that the Prophet (SAWS) is going to visit you during the last ten days of Ramadan, and that he is going to stay at your house! Is he going to be satisfied with your house, morals, manners, and the way you deal with your patents?

 

After Hijrah (the immigration), the society of Madinah suffered from very serious problems that might have lead to its destruction. These problems were:

 

-1- The appearance of al-Muhajireen as a new class in society.

 

-2- Al-Muhajireen left their homes and their money, so they felt lonely in Madinah.

 

-3- Used to being tradesmen, al-Muhajireen did not know how to plant the land in Madinah. Hence, they suffered from unemployment.

 

-4- The number of al-Muhajireen was increasing, and the people were not able to increase the area of the planted land. Hence, an economic problem appeared, because the crops were insufficient.

 

-5- Social problems emerged as a result of the difference of the traditions between Makkah and Madinah.

 

-6- Madinah suffered from dangerous pestilences, like Malaria. Consequently, many of the companions, like Abu-Bakr (RA), became seriously ill. Therefore, the Prophet (SAWS) prayed for them, and he said, “O’ Allah, make us love Madinah as much as or more than we used to love Makkah, O’ Allah, make it healthy and bless its Sa’ and Mud (i.e. measures), and take away its fever to al-Juhfa.”[6]

 

-7- Both of al-Auws and al-Khazraj tribes aspired to dominate the society after the war of al-Boua’th.

 

-8- Some people from al-Auws and al-Khazraj tribes refused to embrace Islam after Hijrah.

 

-9- The appearance of the hypocrites under the leadership of Abdullah Ibn-Abu-Saloul. They hated Islam and Muslims very much.

 

-10- The existence of three Jewish tribes, who had control over the wells, and the trade of crops, wine, and clothes. They hated the Arabs, because they believed that the last prophet would come from them, not from the Arabs.

 

The Prophet (SAWS) reformed the society during two years through three means. Firstly, Building the Masjid: The Masjid was built in order to combine the different classes of society together, to unite them, and to remove the points of disparity between them. Accordingly, the Masjid was not merely a place for paying; it was a place for learning, playing sports, exchanging consultations, and an informational forum. The Masjids have to regain their powerful role in our societies nowadays, in order to achieve the desired revival of our Ummah (Muslim nation).

 

Secondly, The Fraternization between al-Muhajireen and al-Ansar: The Prophet (SAWS) aimed to incorporate the classes of society together. Therefore, he ordered al-Muhajireen to stay at the same houses with the al-Ansar, who have embraced Islam recently, to guide them to the teachings of Islam. Moreover, the Prophet (SAWS) started to tell the people about the importance of the love in Allah. Notice how the Prophet (SAWS) usually chose the suitable words at the suitable occasions. Consequently, the whole society was integrated in a short period.

 

Thirdly, Decreeing the Constitution: The Prophet (SAWS) decreed the first constitution in the world. It determined the rights and the obligations of every person, in addition to the means of achieving the internal and the external security of the city. Some of the items of this constitution were:

 

-1- The Muslims from Quraysh, Yathreb, Makkah, together with those who follow them are all one Ummah (they are equal in the rights and the obligations).

 

-2- All the Jews in Madinah are to be included in the Muslim Ummah, except those who start with injustice and aggression.

 

-3- Both Jews and Muslims have to provide their expenses. They should spread advice and righteousness among themselves, and they should avoid aggression. Jews have their own religion, and Muslims have their own religion.

 

-4- No one is allowed to go for fighting out of Madinah, or to bring enemies to Madinah without taking permission from the Prophet (SAWS).

 

An important lesson to be learned is that it is very importance for Muslims to merge with all the different classes and religions in society.

 

[1] SAWS=Sala-llahu Alaihi Wa-Sallam = All Prayers and Peace of Allah be upon him.

 

[2] Narrator: Sohail Ibn Hanif, authentic hadith, by Al-Albani, Source: Sahih Ibn Majah, page 1168.

 

[3] TMQ=Translation of the Meaning of the Qur'an. This translation is for the realized meaning, so far, of the stated (Surah:Ayah) of the Qur'an. Reading the translated meaning of the Qur'an can never replace reading it in Arabic, the language in which it was revealed.

 

[4] Authentic hadith narrated by Abdullah Ibn Salam in Sahih Ibn Majah, page 1105.

 

[5] Aza-Wa-Jal [Glorified and Sublime be He].

 

[6] Authentic hadith, narrated by Aisha in Sahih al-Bukhary, Volume 5, Book 58, Number 263.

 

 

 

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