The Biography of

Muhammad Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam

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    Lesson 31        

The First Haj

The Haj pilgrimage to Makkah was enjoined in the year 9 Hijri. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam sent Abu Bakr Radhi Allahu Anhu in command of the pilgrims who numbered one hundred.

The opening verses of Surah at-Taubah were revealed after the pilgrims had left for Makkah. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam sent for Ali Radhi Allahu Anhu and ordered him to proclaim the verses at Mina when all the pilgrims had assembled there after performing the sacrifice. It signified the end of idolatry in Arabia as no idolater was allowed to perform the Haj nor to go around the Ka'bah in the nude after that year. (1)

The Year of Deputations

The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam had prevailed over Makkah and returned from the expedition of Tabuk with flying colours. Earlier to that, he had sent letters to the rulers within the country and to the kings and emperors of neighbouring lands inviting them to accept Islam. These were received by some with the greatest honour. Some were astounded. Others were disrespectful and rude. These happenings were on the lips of all in Arabia.

Makkah had been the spiritual and religious centre of Arabia. Submission of the Quraishi nobles to Islam was of the greatest importance for the whole of Arabia. The airy dreams of those who had counted on the Quraish for bringing Islam to its knees had vanished. Those who were in two minds, waiting to see the result of the struggle between the Muslims and the Quraish, found the obstacle in their acceptance of Islam removed from their way. People realised that it would not be possible for them to resist the power of Islam any longer. Deputations started arriving in Madinah from all over Arabia and the people entered the faith of Allah in huge numbers.

Representative parties of the Arab tribes started calling upon the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam in quick succession. These deputations returned to their homes charged with a new spirit of faith to call others to Islam and to irradiate all traces of paganism in their tribes.

Deputation of Banu Tamim

One such deputation came from the large tribe of Banu Tamim with a number of its orators and poets and challenged the Muslims to a contest in poetry. The contest ended in establishing the superiority of Islam. The chiefs and nobles of Banu Tamim acknowledged the superiority of the Muslim orators and poets, accepted Islam and left for their homes with valuable gifts presented to them by the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam. (2)

Deputation of Banu Amir

The representative of Banu Amir came to the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam, accepted Islam and went back to his tribe determined to invite them to his faith. When his tribesmen gathered around him, the first thing he said to them was: "Destruction be to al-Laat and al-Uzza! By Allah, they can neither hurt nor heal. Allah has sent a prophet, given a book to him and delivered you from your present state. I bear witness that there is no god but one Allah who has no partner and that Muhammad is His slave and prophet. I have brought you what he has commanded you to do and what he has forbidden you from doing." By the time the evening was over there was not a man or woman in his tribe who had not entered the fold of Islam. (3)

Mughira Ibn Sh'uba Radhi Allahu Anhu was deputed by the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam to break the idol al-Laat. Mughira Radhi Allahu Anhu and his friends broke the idol into pieces and then raised to the ground the boundary wall enclosing it. They returned the same day after accomplishing the task assigned to them. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam praised them for it. (4)

Deputation of Banu Hanifa

With the deputation of Banu Hanifa came Musaylima, the great liar. He accepted Islam but later on turned apostate and made a claim to prophethood. He was killed fighting the Muslims.

Deputation of Banu Tayy

The deputation of Banu Tayy came to Madinah bringing with them their chief and gallant cavalier, Zaydul Khayl. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam changed his name to Zaydul Khayr and he proved himself to be a staunch Muslim.

Adi Ibn Hatim

Adi, the son of Hatim, whose name had long been proverbial for generosity, also called upon the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam. Impressed by the courteous regard and consideration of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam, Adi accepted Islam and said: "By Allah, this is not the way kings behave."

Deputation of Banu Zubayd

The delegation of Banu Zubayd was led by Amr Ibn Ma'di Karib, the noted warrior of Arabia.

Deputation of Azd

Then came the deputation from Azd and the envoys of the king of Himyar, who brought a letter to the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam, informing him about the acceptance of Islam by their tribes.

Deputation of Abd al-Qays

The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam welcomed the deputation of Abd al-Qays when they came to him but he also forbade them to use the glazed jars employed for brewing intoxicants. He took this precaution since Abd al-Qays were addicted to drinking liquors.

Deputation from Yemen

The people of Yemen came to Madinah singing verses which expressed their eagerness to meet the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam.

Tomorrow shall we meet our mates,
Muhammad and his comrades.

When the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam saw them he said: "The people of the Yemen have come to you. They have the most tender of minds and the gentlest of hearts. Faith belongs to Yemen and wisdom belongs to Yemen." The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam had sent Khalid Ibn al-Walid Radhi Allahu Anhu with a party to invite the people of Yemen to Islam. He stayed there for six months, preaching the faith to them, but none accepted his summons. Thereafter, Ali Radhi Allahu Anhu was assigned the task. He went there and read out the Prophet's Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam letter to the people of Hamdaan. The entire tribe entered the fold of Islam and Ali Radhi Allahu Anhu communicated the news to the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam. He prostrated before Allah in thanks. (5)

Deputation from Muzayna

A delegation consisting of four hundred men paid a visit to Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam from the tribe of Muzayna. Then came sixty people of whom twenty four were chiefs and ecclesiastics including Abu Haritha, the great scholar of their religion. The kings of Rome honoured him because of his extensive knowledge, gave him subsidiary stipends and had built a church for him. Allah on this occasion sent down a number of Quráanic verses concerning these people.

Deputation from Najraan

The tribe of Banu al-Harith Ibn Ka'b, living in the territory known as Najraan, were converted to Islam by Khalid Ibn al-Walid Radhi Allahu Anhu, who stayed with the tribe and instructed them regarding the teachings of Islam. Khalid Radhi Allahu Anhu came back to the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam with representatives from the tribe. When these men returned to their tribe the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam sent Amr Ibn Hazm Radhi Allahu Anhu to instruct and teach them Islam.

Another delegation from Najraan had come to see the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam after he had sent a letter inviting them to Islam. They posed a number of questions and Allah answered these in verses of the Quran. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam proposed a solemn meeting in which both sides were to summon their men, women and children and to earnestly pray to Allah invoking His curse on the party that belied His revelations.

The Christians, afraid to accept this challenge, declined. They presented themselves to him a day later and sought the protection of the Islamic State in return for a tribute. The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam gave them a document specifying the tribute and sent Abu Ubayda Ibn al-Jarraah Radhi Allahu Anhu with them as a trustee. (6)

Deputation from Tujib

The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam felt happy on the arrival of a deputation from Tujib. They asked questions about a number of things and the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam wrote down the answers to their questions. They made a request to learn more about the Qur'an and the Sunnah, which caused the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam to have a liking for them. He instructed Bilal Radhi Allahu Anhu to entertain them well. However, they stayed only a few days with the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam and expressed the desire to return to their homes. When they were asked why they wanted to depart so soon, they replied: "We want to go back to tell our people how we met the Messenger of Allah, what discussions we had with him and what replies he gave to our questions." Thereafter, they returned and again called upon the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam during the pilgrimage in 10 Hijri when the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam was at Mina. (7)

Miscellaneous Deputations

Deputations also called upon the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam from Banu Fazara,
Banu Asad, Bahra and Adhra. All of them accepted Islam. When the delegations of Bali, Dhi Murrah and Khawlaan called upon the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam, he asked them about the idol of Khawlaan to which they had been paying divine honours. They replied: "Allah bless you! Allah has replaced it by what has been brought by you. There are, however, a few elderly persons and senile women who are devoted to it but we will break it when we go back."

Deputations also came to the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam from Muharib, Ghassan,
Ghamid and Nakh'a.

Natural disposition of the Arabs

The most remarkable feature of the character of the Arabs was their openness to the point of being blunt and rugged. The discussion a pagan chief, Kinana Ibn Abd Yalil, had with the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam illustrates this:

Kinana : "As for adultery, we mostly remain bachelors or cannot get married, so we must indulge in it."

Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam : "That is unlawful for you. Allah has commanded: And come not near unto adultery. Verily, it is an abomination and an evil way.''

Kinana : "What you say about interest means that our entire property is nothing but interest."

Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam : "You have a right to get back the original sum lent by you, for Allah has ordered: 0 you who believe, fear Allah and give up what remains due to you in interest, if you are believers."

Kinana : "As regards wine it is the juice of our lands and a must for us."

Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam : "Allah has forbidden it : 0 you who believe, wine, games of chance, idols and divining arrows are only an infamy of Satan's handiwork. Leave it aside in order that you may succeed."

Kinana : "And what do you say about the idol Rabbah?"

Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam : "Break it."

Kinana and his companions were taken aback. They protested : "If Rabbah were to know that you want to break her she would destroy all her priests!"

Umar Radhi Allahu Anhu now intervened to say: "0 Abd Yalil, destruction to you! How ignorant are you! What else is Rabbah except a stone?"

Kinana and his friends replied angrily: "Ibn al-Khattab, we have not come to ask you.' Then, turning to the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam, he said: "You may break it, but we cannot."

The Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam said to them: "I will send someone with you who will do it for you."

The deputation then took leave from the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam. Before leaving for home they requested the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam to appoint a leader for them. Uthman Ibn Abi al-As Radhi Allahu Anhu was selected by the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam as their leader. He was the youngest among them but the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam had noticed his keen interest in Islam. (8)


Lessons to Learn

The envoys of Arabian tribes coming to Madinah learnt about Islam and its institution, watched the graceful behaviour of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam and benefited from his company and that of his Sahabah. Tents were often pitched in the courtyard of the masjid where they saw the Muslims offering prayers and reciting the Qur'an. They spoke plainly and frankly, asked whatever they wanted while the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam replied to their questions in truth and explained the wisdom of Islam to them.

The large number of deputations and tribes that came to Madinah indicated the degree of acceptance of the Islamic message amongst the general masses. Madinah had been transformed into the capital of Arabia. The tribes had no choice but to surrender to the truth and justice of Islam.

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(1) Ibn Hisham

(2) Ibn Hisham

(3) Ibn Hisham

(4) Al Bidayah Wan Nihayah

(5) Bukhari

(6) Al Bidayah Wan Nihayah

(7) Zadul Ma'ad

(8) Zadul Ma'ad


Dua when leaving the Masjid

Meaning : O Allah, I seek from your bounty.

A Hadith

Whoever builds a Masjid for Allah's pleasure Allah will build for him a mansion in paradise. (Bukhari)