22 December 2023
Muhammadsa: The Great Exemplar
After reciting the tashahud, ta‘awuz and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa stated:
In the recent [Friday] sermons, I have been mentioning details regarding the Battle of Uhud. As mentioned, during the general battle, the Muslims caused great losses to the disbelievers, and they were forced to retreat. However, when, despite the emphatic instructions of the Holy Prophetsa, most of those who were appointed to protect the mountain pass left it unattended, the enemy launched an attack from that direction and caused great harm to the Muslims. The details of this are as follows.
When the flag bearers of the idolaters were killed, one after the other and no one dared to lift it or come near it, the idolaters scurried away at once and turned their backs. Even their women, who moments ago were melodiously and passionately beating the drum and singing, threw away their drums and fled towards the mountain. When the Muslims saw the enemy retreat, they ran after them and started collecting their weapons and the spoils of war. At that very moment, the Muslim archers, whom the Holy Prophetsa had positioned on the mountain and instructed not to move under any circumstances, left in order to collect the spoils of war, or so it is alleged. Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra, the leader of this battalion, strictly prevented them from doing so as they had instructions from the Holy Prophetsa to not leave their post under any circumstances. However, they did not listen to him and said, “The idolaters have been defeated. What are we doing standing here?” Having said this, they descended from the mountain and started collecting the spoils of war. Although most of them had left their places, their leader, Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra, and some other companions remained firm in their places. They numbered even fewer than 10. Their leader said to those descending from the mountain pass, “I will certainly not disobey the instructions of the Holy Prophetsa.”
When discussing the companions who left the mountain pass, most historians and biographers state that they were in a hurry to collect the spoils of war. They insisted that if everyone else is collecting the spoils of war, then why should they be left behind? Even though their leader, Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra warned them against this, as it was an instruction of the Holy Prophetsa to not leave their post and that they should remain there. However, most of them did not agree with their leader and descended from the mountain pass in order to collect the spoils of war. Most historians have written this, and the same is generally mentioned in books of Hadith and commentaries that these companions left the mountain pass in a hurry to collect the spoils of war.
In the commentary of verse 153 of Surah Aal-e-Imran:
مِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلدُّنۡيَا وَمِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلۡأٓخِرَةَ
“Among you were those who desired the present world, and among you were those who desired the next,” most commentators have written under this verse that the companions wanted to leave quickly in order to collect the spoils of war. However, leaving the mountain pass for this worldly desire does not seem befitting of the stature of the companions.
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has also written a detailed note in relation to this, which is unpublished. I will mention it later in the commentary of this verse. Prior to this, however, I will recite the entire verse.
وَلَقَدۡ صَدَقَكُمُ ٱللَّهُ وَعۡدَهُۥٓ إِذۡ تَحُسُّونَهُم بِإِذۡنِهِۦ ۖ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا فَشِلۡتُمۡ وَتَنَٰزَعۡتُمۡ فِي ٱلۡأَمۡرِ وَعَصَيۡتُم مِّنۢ بَعۡدِ مَآ أَرَىٰكُم مَّا تُحِبُّونَ ۚ مِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلدُّنۡيَا وَمِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلۡأٓخِرَةَ ۚ ثُمَّ صَرَفَكُمۡ عَنۡهُمۡ لِيَبۡتَلِيَكُمۡ ۖ وَلَقَدۡ عَفَا عَنكُمۡ ۗ وَٱللَّهُ ذُو فَضۡلٍ عَلَى ٱلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ
“And Allah had surely made good to you His promise when you were slaying and destroying them by His leave, until, when you became lax and disagreed among yourselves concerning the order and you disobeyed after He had shown you that which you loved, [He withdrew His help]. Among you were those who desired the present world, and among you were those who desired the next. Then He turned you away from them, that He might try you—and He has surely pardoned you, and Allah is Gracious to the believers.” (Ch.3: V.153)
It is from the commentary of this verse that we are led to understand that war was fought for the spoils of war. [Perhaps] this verse was for the battle before this, or for this battle. To say regarding the companions, or to even think that they were worried about the spoils, is to insult their honour. These people had already sacrificed their own lives and the lives of their wives and children for their Beloved God and His Messengersa, and even before this, they had sacrificed their wealth and livelihood for this very cause. As the incidents detail, in eagerness to attain martyrdom, these people went out [of the city] to fight, and these battles were not being fought to attain any wealth or spoils. In reality, this is an allegation against Muslims. Yes, in the case of victory, receiving the spoils of war can be a secondary thing, but the purpose and intention of the companions could never be to attain the spoils of war. Nonetheless, while detailing the history of Islam and the life of the Holy Prophetsa, whether it’s historians and biographers, scholars of Hadith, or Quranic commentators, it seems these esteemed scholars incorrectly understood it, and only trusting a narration or chain, perhaps out of their simplicity or believing that the narration is true, these people said that the companions descended [from their post] for the spoils of war. They did not realise how damaging these words could prove to be in terms of their consequences and impact, and whether they are about the blessed character of the Holy Prophetsa or about those companions who benefitted from his spiritual power or how much these words are contrary to their grandeur.
Nonetheless, looking at the companions’ sacrifices and their eagerness for martyrdom, it is hard to believe that the companions were quick to leave the mountain pass just so that they could attain the spoils of war.
It seems that when these companions saw that the Muslims had become victorious and were causing the enemy to flee and pursuing them, after seeing this clear victory, the companions who were on the mountain pass were anxious to join the celebration of victory, and right after the victory, they were anxious and desired to join the last moments of battle, saying that “we too should also join this celebration.”
They may have thought that “our brothers are directly taking part in Jihad, and we are here standing on a mountain pass.” So their desire to participate in Jihad was ignited, thinking, “Now the victory has come, so let us participate in Jihad as the day is about to end. We should at least take part in the celebration of this victory.” But their leader, Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra was proven to be wiser; his focus was on the command of the Holy Prophetsa, that whatever happens, do not move from this position. This was his decision, and it was the correct decision, that whatever happens, they should not move from there. As I have stated, we find commentary on this verse in the unpublished notes of Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra. In relation to this, he wrote:
مِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلدُّنۡيَا وَمِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلۡأٓخِرَةَ
“‘Among you were those who desired the present world.’ (Ch.3: V.153) At this place, the present world does not refer to spoils of war; rather, [it refers to] the things of the world, and the hereafter refers to the final destination and decision [of God]. To fathom that they [the companions] thought that ‘we won’t get any spoils of war’ is against the incident itself, because during [the Battle of] Badr, those people also got a portion of the spoils of war who couldn’t participate due to certain circumstances; thus, this idea is absolutely wrong. To postulate that the companions were worldly is not correct.”
This is what Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra said.
He then states: “The truth is, they desired to take part in the Battle of Uhud. This was also a worldly thought that ‘we want to be part of the battle and fight the disbelievers.’ This does not mean here that they want to be a part of receiving spoils. They had thought that they should not be eclipsed by those who participated in the battle, but this was also a worldly thought.”
It is a worldly thought because to only fight is no significant achievement. If one does not follow the instructions of the Holy Prophetsa, it becomes a worldly thought.
“They should have done nothing but obey the orders to the letter.”
Even though it was a religious war, if the Holy Prophetsa had assigned them a task away from the battlefield, then it was their religious obligation to obey the command and not to desire to fight in the actual war itself.
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states:
مِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلدُّنۡيَا وَمِنكُم مَّن يُرِيدُ ٱلۡأٓخِرَةَ
“‘And among you were those who desired the next.’ (Ch.3: V.153) God Almighty states that their leader and those companions remaining with him desired the hereafter. Their focus was the final destination and decision [of God]. They thought that the conclusion of this wouldn’t be good. He was looking at the consequences of disobedience. Similarly, his companions also deemed him to be in the right. The leader [of this contingent] and those who agreed with him were mindful of the ultimate objective and they considered the command of the Holy Prophetsa to be more important than participation in the battle.” The matter is now clear. “But contrary to this, [those who left the mount], their focus was limited.” Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states, “This explanation befits the noble stature of the companions, which is made apparent by their actions and sacrifice.” (Unpublished notes of Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra, under verse 153 of Surah Aal-e-Imran)
Whilst mentioning this note of Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh has expounded upon this, stating, “They – i.e., those who disputed – desired the world, whereas the leader of their battalion, Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra desired the hereafter. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh states that Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has mentioned a very good point in his notes that people take ‘the world’ here to mean looting and attaining the spoils of war, however, this is incorrect. They had their eyes on the imminent success. The meaning here of ‘the world’ is that their eyes were set on what happened previously, (i.e., that the battle had been won). However, Abdullah bin Jubair’sra eyes were set on the hereafter and saw the greatest success to lay in the pleasure of the Holy Prophetsa. He desired that the Holy Prophetsa and Allah Almighty be pleased in the end, and [understood] that these temporary means in sight held no significance or meaning. True piety is to attain His pleasure.”
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh continues, “Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further stated that the argument itself is erroneous that some desired the world and some the hereafter, for in reality, what was the significance of the world [in their estimation]? It seems completely out of place that they were running from the mountain pass [for this reason]. Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra then explained that had they run from the mountain pass, which they were appointed to protect, in order to gather the spoils of war, however, by that time, everything would have been distributed anyway. Why do they not think, as the Holy Quran has stated to think well of one’s people, that they went there with the thought in mind that they were all rejoicing and jubilantly standing beside the Holy Prophetsa, congratulating one another, and so why should they miss out on these scenes? At times it so happens, and it is exactly in accordance with human nature, that when celebrations and jubilations are taking place, everyone runs to gather in that place.”
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh said that during his stay here, it has been witnessed many a times that when someone comes and brings good news, people do not come in order to loot or take the spoils. In fact, they come to partake in the joy. So they [the companions] could see that [the Muslims] were so joyful down there, where the Holy Prophetsa was, they were all enjoying so much whilst gathering around the Holy Prophetsa. The promise of God was fulfilled yet they were stood there alone, so they thought to also go down there. However, Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra had his eyes set on the hereafter, knowing that it was much more pleasing than the celebrations at that time to remain posted there for the sake of the Messengersa of Allah, and to follow the instructions given to them, and the joy in that was the true joy, not the joy being expressed below. (Dars-ul-Quran, 5 Ramadan, 16 February 1994)
Nonetheless, on the one hand, staring at defeat, the army of the disbelievers were running away, and on the other hand, approximately 40 out of the 50 Muslim fighters deployed on the mountain pass left their positions and descended. At that moment, Khalid bin Walid, who had not yet accepted Islam, saw that the stronghold on the mountain pass had become vacant owing to the departure of many of the archers, and only a few of them remained. Upon seeing this, he took Ikrimah bin Abi Jahl with him and immediately turned his cavalry unit around. They reached the mountain pass and attacked the few remaining archers. This attack was so severe that they killed all the remaining contingent of archers, including the commander, Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra. They mutilated the body of Hazrat Abdullah bin Jubairra, i.e. they cut off his hands, feet and other parts of his body. Next, this unit of the Quraish descended and catching the Muslims off guard, they surrounded them. At the time, the Muslims were unaware of them and were gathering the spoils of war and capturing the idolaters as prisoners. All of a sudden this cavalry unit of the idolaters galloped upon the Muslims. They began raising slogans of Uzza and Hubal [idols], which was the slogan of the idolaters on the day of Uhud. As soon as they reached the Muslims, they caught them by surprise and put them to the sword. In a state of panic, the Muslims began running in whichever direction they could. They dropped whatever spoils of war and prisoners they had gathered and began running in all directions. Their ranks and organisation were shattered. They did not know where anyone was.
Up until now, the flag of the idolaters was lying on the floor. However, upon seeing the change in circumstances, a woman named Amrah bint Alqamah picked it up and raised it aloft. She began crying out to the idolaters to turn back. Whilst the idolaters were running away, they saw their flag being raised and realised that the tide of the war had turned. They immediately turned back and gathered around their flag. (Ali bin Burhan al-Din al-Halabi, Al-Sirah al-Halabiyyah, Vol. 2 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2002], p. 30)
One author writes: “The flag of the Quraish was rolling in the dust until a woman named Amrah bint Alqamah grabbed hold of it and raised it aloft. She began waving it frantically and reproaching those who were fleeing the battlefield. She was calling out to the disbelievers of Mecca in order for them to turn back. In this way, the defeated army of the Quraish re-assembled in the plains of Uhud once again and they surrounded the Muslim army. Since the Muslims were no longer concerned [about any danger] they were not in their rows, therefore they were scattered.” (Da’irah Ma‘arif Sirat Muhammadsa, Vol. 6 [Lahore, Pakistan: Bazam Iqbal], pp. 486-487)
On this day, a great number of Muslims embraced martyrdom. The victory they had gained was now converted into a trial in the form of defeat.
Describing the scenes at the time, an author writes: “The mistake of the archers led to the Muslims breaking rank and becoming scattered. They threw the spoils of war that were in their hands and in a state of confusion, they began to attack each other. Many of them were confused as to where they should go, especially after they heard the crier of the idolaters announce that the Holy Prophetsa had been killed. This was a time of great trial in which many Muslims were killed accidentally by their fellow brethren. Some Muslims accidentally killed other Muslims [owing to the confusion created]. It was assumed that the numerical advantage of the enemy army, which had become re-organised owing to Khalid’s attack, would annihilate the Muslims who were fewer in number and that they would all be killed.” (Muhammad Ahmad Hashmi, Ghazwat Uhud [Karachi, Pakistan: Nafees Academy, 1989], pp. 140-141)
But Allah the Almighty bestowed His grace and what the enemy desired did not come to fruition.
With regards to Yamanra, the father of Hazrat Hudhaifahra who was accidentally martyred by Muslims, it is written that among the examples of those who were accidentally killed by the companions, one of them was Hazrat Hudhaifah’sra father, Yamanra, who was killed by the Muslims owing to a misunderstanding. Ibn Ishaq writes that when the Holy Prophetsa left for the Battle of Uhud, Thabit bin Waqshra and Husail bin Jabir, whose name was Yamanra, and was the father of Hudhaifah bin Yamanra, as they were elderly, they were assigned to guard the fort in which the Muslim women and children were taking refuge. One of them said to the other, “What are you waiting for?” Both of the elderly companions were inside the fort, when they began saying, “What is it that we are waiting around for? We do not have much time left as we have grown old. If we do not pass away today, it is certain we will tomorrow. Should we not raise our swords and go join the Messengersa of Allah? Perhaps Allah the Almighty will bless us with martyrdom.” Then both of them grabbed their swords, attacked the disbelievers and became mixed among the crowd. I.e., the Muslims knew that these two elderly Companions were not part of the army and were back in Medina, whereas they had reached the battlefield and were amidst the fighting. Therefore, the Muslims were not able to recognise them immediately; they did not know who they were. Thabit bin Waqshra was martyred by the disbelievers, but Hudhaifah’sra father was accidentally killed by the Muslims. Hudhaifahra said: “By God! This is my father who has been martyred.” (When he went to see he realised it was his father.) The Muslims replied: “By God! We did not recognise him and killed him by mistake.” Indeed, they spoke the truth. Hudhaifahra said: “May God have mercy on you as He is the Most Merciful of those who show mercy.” Later on, the Holy Prophetsa ordered for Hudhaifahra to be given blood money for the accidental killing of his father at the hands of Muslims, but he refused to take it and forgave the Muslims. Owing to this, the respect and admiration of Hudhaifahra increased greatly in the eyes of God, His Messengersa and the Muslims. (Ibn Hisham, Al-Sirah al-Nabawiyyah [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2001], pp. 537-538)
Hazrat Hamzahra was also martyred in this battle. Regarding him, on the authority of Umair bin Ishaq, it is stated that in the Battle of Uhud, Hamzah bin Abdul Muttalib was fighting with two swords ahead of the Holy Prophetsa. He was calling out: “I am the Lion of Allah!” Saying this, at times he would charge ahead and at times he would move back. During one of these manoeuvres, he slipped and Wahshi Aswad saw him. Abu Usamah says that he took aim and threw his spear in a way that killed him. (Ibn Sa’d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 3 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1990], p. 8)
Regarding this, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra writes:
“Hazrat Hamzahra, who, in addition to being the real paternal uncle of the Holy Prophetsa, was also his foster brother, fought valiantly. Wherever he would turn, the ranks of the Quraish would be torn apart. However, the enemy also lay in ambush of him. Jubair bin Mut‘im had especially brought along an Abyssinian slave by the name of Wahshi and promised to free him on the condition that he should find some way and seek revenge by slaying Hamzahra, who had killed Ta‘imah bin ‘Adiyy, the paternal uncle of Jubair, on the occasion of Badr. As such, Wahshi hid somewhere and lay in ambush of him. When Hazrat Hamzahra attacked someone and passed by this place, the assassin took good aim and threw his small lance below the naval, which immediately penetrated the body and came out the opposite end of his body. Hamzahra staggered and dropped to the ground, but mustered the strength to stand up again and endeavoured to make a leap towards Wahshi, but stumbled to the ground again and gave his life. Thus, a strong pillar of the Muslim army was shattered. When the Holy Prophetsa was informed that Hamzahra had been slain, he was deeply saddened. There is a narration that after the Ghazwah of Ta’if, when the assassin of Hamzahra came before the Holy Prophetsa, although he forgave him, due to his love for Hamzahra, he instructed that Wahshi should not come before him. On that occasion, Wahshi resolved in his heart that until he used the same hand by which he martyred the paternal uncle of the Messenger of God, to slay a great enemy of Islam, he would not rest. (He had become a Muslim at the time, which changed his entire perception.) As such, in the Khilafat of Hazrat Abu Bakrra, in the Battle of Yamamah, he fulfilled this vow by slaying Musailimah Kadhdhab, a false claimant of prophethood.” (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, pp. 492-493)
The body of Hazrat Hamzahra was treated in a very disrespectful manner. There is a narration that Abu Sufyan’s wife, Hind, came with the army on the day of Uhud. She had sworn that she would chew on the liver of Hazrat Hamzahra in order to exact revenge for her father, who had been killed by Hazrat Hamzahra during the Battle of Badr. When the situation transpired as such and Hazrat Hamzahra was martyred, the idolaters began to mutilate and disfigure the dead bodies and cut their nose and ears, etc. They also brought back a piece of Hazrat Hamzah’sra liver and Hind began to chew it, however, she was unable to swallow it and threw it out. When the Holy Prophetsa learned of this incident, he stated, “Allah the Almighty had forbidden the fire to ever touch any part of the body of Hamzah.” (Ibn Sa’d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 3 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1990], p. 8)
There is a narration wherein it mentions that the Holy Prophetsa went to the body of Hazrat Hamzahra and expressed such sentiment and gave the glad tidings of high status to Hazrat Hamzahsa in the following way:
When the Prophetsa visited the body of Hazrat Hamzahra and saw that his liver had been cut out and chewed upon, Ibn Hisham records this in his biography of Prophet Muhammadsa that the Holy Prophetsa stood by the body of Hazrat Hamzahra and said:
“O Hamzah, no trial like this (i.e., your demise) will I ever face again. I have never seen a more painful scene till today.”
Then, the Holy Prophetsa said:
“Angel Gabriel has given me the tiding that Hamzah bin Abdil Muttalib has been declared as the Lion of the Prophet in the seven heavens.” (Ibn Hisham, Al-Sirah al-Nabawiyyah [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar Ibn Hazm, 2009], pp. 537-538)
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IIra states, “Among the staunchest opponents of the Holy Prophetsa was Hind. She was such a bitter opponent that she would recite couplets on the day of Uhud in order to rouse the spirits of the army to go forth and attack the Muslim army. When the battle reached a critical juncture for the Muslims, Hind announced a reward for anyone who would go to Hazrat Hamzahra, the paternal uncle of the Holy Prophetsa, and cut his liver out and his ears and nose and bring it to her. And so, this is precisely how the body of Hazrat Hamzahra was treated. After the battle, when the Holy Prophetsa came to learn that his paternal uncle’s body had been treated in this manner, naturally, he was very affected by this and he stated, ‘The enemy has initiated this cruel act and I too shall now treat them in the same manner.’ It was on this occasion that Allah the Almighty revealed the divine revelation that despite their act of cruelty, they should not act in this way and instead should treat them with forgiveness and pardon them.” (Tafsir-e-Kabir, Vol. 6, pp. 353-354, Under verse 47 of Surah an-Nur)
Thus, such an act was forbidden in Islam.
There is also an incident with regard to the sister of Hazrat Hamzahra showing a truly remarkable example of patience, contentment and obedience. Hazrat Zubairra relates that upon the conclusion of the Battle of Uhud, a woman could be seen coming from ahead very swiftly. She was close to seeing the bodies of the martyrs, and the Holy Prophetsa did not like for this woman to see the bodies as they had been severely mutilated. Thus, he ordered for her to be stopped. Hazrat Zubairra relates that he looked carefully and realised that it was in fact his mother, Hazrat Safiyyahra. And so, he went running towards her and met her before she reached the bodies of the martyrs. Upon seeing him, she placed her hands on his chest and pushed him back – she was a very strong woman. She said, “Move aside, I will not listen to you”. Hazrat Zubairra then informed her that the Holy Prophetsa had instructed that she should not see the bodies of the martyrs. Upon hearing this she immediately stopped. She took out two pieces of cloth which she had brought with her and said, “These are two sheets I have brought for my brother Hamzah, as I received news of his martyrdom. Bury him in these sheets.” She did not listen to her son first and pushed him away, but when she was told that it was an instruction from the Holy Prophetsa, she immediately stopped out of obedience. When she heard the instruction of the Holy Prophetsa, she remained composed of her senses and despite her immense grief, she demonstrated obedience. She then said, “I will not go further and will stop but convey my message to the Holy Prophetsa that I am aware of the fact that my brother Hamzah has been martyred and the disbelievers have mutilated his body. I would just like to see him and I promise that I will not wail or shriek upon seeing him and will demonstrate patience.” Hazrat Zubairra informed the Holy Prophetsa, and so he permitted her to go and see him. Hazrat Safiyyahra went ahead and sat next to the body of her brother. Upon seeing the bodies of the martyrs, who were like brave lions, tears began to flow from her eyes but she did not utter a single word.
According to one narration, the Holy Prophetsa came next to her and tears began to flow from his eyes as well. This brave and extremely patient sister expressed her love through her tears and then stood up and said to her son, “I have bought two sheets for my brother (just as it was mentioned earlier). I had already received news of his martyrdom; hence, I came here. Bury him in these sheets.”
The narrator further states that when Hazrat Hamzahra was about to be wrapped in two sheets, they saw an Ansari companion beside him who had also been martyred. His body had also been mutilated as had been carried out with Hazrat Hamzahra. [The narrator says] “We felt ashamed that Hazrat Hamzahra was being buried in two sheets while there was not even a single sheet for the Ansari companion. Thus, we decided to bury Hazrat Hamzahra in one of the sheets and the Ansari companion in the other. We found that one of them was taller than the other; thus, we drew lots and whichever sheet was drawn for either of the two, they were buried in it. (Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Vol. 1, Hadith 1418 [Beirut, Lebanon: ‘Alam al-Kutub, 1998], p. 452; Khutbat-e-Tahir, Taqrir Jalsa Salana Qabl az Khilafat, pp. 364-365)
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Ira states:
“Seeing that the disbelieving army was worried, Hazrat Hamzahra entered right into the middle of their ranks. The Muslims were practically victorious when the comrades of Abdullah bin Jubairra overlooked the orders given by the Holy Prophetsa and left the frontlines in hope of obtaining spoils. Upon seeing the frontlines abandoned, the enemy gathered its troops and attacked the Muslim army from behind. There was a fierce battle. Hazrat Amir Hamzahra and Abdullah bin Jubairra were martyred. Hazrat Alira, Hazrat Umarra and Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiqra were also injured. Hind bint Utbah, wife of Abu Sufyan, cut open and chewed on the liver of Amir Hamzahra while she had the ears and noses of slain Muslims mutilated and made into a necklace which she wore around her neck. The Muslims were furious upon seeing the bodies of their martyred being disfigured in this manner, to the extent that the Holy Prophetsa became so emotional and upset that he commanded that whenever they were victorious, the Muslims should treat the bodies of the disbelievers in the same manner. Hence, upon seeing his beloved uncle he said:
لَأُمَثِّلَنَّ بِسَبْعِيْنَ مِنْهُمْ مَكَانَكَ
“‘I will mutilate 70 of them in exchange for you.’ However, natural mercy and inherent tenderness overcame temporary human anger, leading to the following verse being revealed:
إِنۡ عَاقَبۡتُمۡ فَعَاقِبُواْ بِمِثۡلِ مَا عُوقِبۡتُم بِهِۦ ۖ وَلَئِن صَبَرۡتُمۡ لَهُوَ خَيۡرٞ لِّلصَّـٰبِرِينَ
“If you desire to punish the oppressors, then punish them to the extent to which you have been wronged; but if you show patience, then, surely, that is best for those who are patient.” (16:127)
“To exhibit patience in this state under these circumstances? Holy is Allah. It is true:
وَمَآ أَرۡسَلۡنَٰكَ إِلَّا رَحۡمَةٌ لِّلۡعَٰلَمِينَ
“‘And we have not sent thee but as a mercy for all peoples.’ (21:108).”
Here he has lauded the Holy Prophetsa as the mercy for all peoples.
Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Ira states, “From that day on, the deplorable practice of destroying and mutilating the dead which continued in all other nations was considered amongst the Muslims to be completely forbidden, and this distinction is specific to Islam. The Muslims faced great tragedy in that battle, and this misfortune was due to the mistake of Abdullah bin Jubair’sra battalion. However, this also resulted in great benefit, as the enmity and opposition of the hypocrites and Jews became evident, distinguishing them from those Muslims who were sincere.” (Fasl-ul-Khitab, Part 1, pp. 126-127)
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states:
“One of the severest opponents of the Holy Prophetsa was Hindah, (she is called ‘Hindah’ in Urdu whereas her actual name was Hind). She was such a fierce opponent that on the occasion of the Battle of Uhud, she would recite poetry to incite people to attack the Muslim army. When the Muslim army was in a vulnerable state, she said that whoever brought her the liver of Hazrat Hamzahra – uncle of the Holy Prophetsa – and would also cut off his ears and nose and bring those to her, she would give them a reward. Hence, this is exactly what was done to Hazrat Hamzah’sra body. After the battle when the Holy Prophetsa learned that his uncle had been disfigured in this manner, he naturally felt a great deal of pain and he said, ‘When the enemy has initiated such cruel treatment, then I too will treat them in the same manner.’ It was then that the Holy Prophetsa received revelation from Allah the Almighty saying that despite this cruel treatment, he should not take such action and should instead deal with remission and forgiveness.” (Tafsir-e-Kabir, Vol. 6, pp. 353-354)
I will mention further details of the battle in the future, insha-Allah..
I have been reminding members to continue praying for the people of Palestine. May Allah the Almighty enable the world to truly take action against injustice. Although the voices against this are becoming stronger and people are even speaking of the fact that injustices are being perpetrated, it seems that everyone is afraid of the Israeli government. Either that, or the Western world is naturally against the Muslim world and harbours hatred against them, due to which they do not wish for the injustices against them to end, or they are not making the necessary efforts to bring the injustices to an end. They do not consider that these injustices are being perpetrated against innocent children, women and the elderly. Hence, we cannot fully trust them; however, we must continue striving to help them to understand and we must also continue to pray. May Allah the Almighty enable the Muslim world to strengthen its voice so that they may raise their voices and bring an end to these injustices.
After the [Friday] prayer I will lead two funeral prayers in absentia. The first funeral is of respected Sheikh Ahmad Husain Abu Sardana Sahib, who was from Gaza. Muhammad Sharif Odeh Sahib has written that this Ahmadi elder of theirs, Sheikh Ahmad Husain Abu Sardana, was martyred in recent days as the result of Israeli bombardment in Gaza.
اِنَّا لِلّٰہِ وَاِنَّاۤ اِلَيۡہِ رٰجِعُوۡنَ
[‘Surely, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return.’]
The deceased is the first Ahmadi to be martyred in the current war taking place in Gaza. Sheikh Ahmad Abu Sardana Sahib was about 94 years old. He was among the scholars who had graduated from Al Azhar University. In 1970, he and some of his friends visited Haifa. As that day happened to be Eid, God’s decree was such that the deceased and his friends went to Kababir. During his Eid sermon, the late missionary Maulana Bashiruddin Ubaidullah Sahib spoke about the advent of the Imam Mahdi, which piqued the interest of the late Sheikh Abu Sardana Sahib. He told the Ahmadi sitting next to him, Alauddin Odeh Sahib, that he wished to have a detailed meeting with Maulana Bashiruddin Ubaidullah Sahib. During that conversation, he told Maulana Sahib, “My late father advised me that if, during my life, I were to receive news regarding the advent of the Imam Mahdi then I should certainly pledge allegiance.” Hence, respected Sheikh Ahmad Abu Sardana Sahib pledged allegiance that very same day. Upon seeing this, some of his friends also pledged allegiance. The deceased was beloved as a respected scholar by all in his area. He did not have any children, although there are some sincere Ahmadis in his family. After pledging allegiance, the deceased would visit Kababir whenever he could and would remain in contact with the Ahmadis of Kababir. He had a great deal of love for Khilafat and he expressed on various occasions that he was a true Ahmadi. He had an extraordinary attachment to the Holy Quran. He usually completed an entire reading of the Holy Quran in the span of a week. In fact he conveyed a message to me in the form of a recording in which he mentioned the same thing. The former Chief Justice of Palestine, Sheikh Muhammad Husain Abu Sardana, was the brother of the late Ahmad Abu Sardana Sahib. His wife was his second wife who was also injured in the attack. May Allah the Almighty grant her a complete recovery.
Dr Aziz Hafiz Sahib, a resident here, had the opportunity to go there a few times on behalf of Humanity First and meet with Abu Sardana Sahib. He says, “When I went to meet him, he used to try and stand in respect for me. I asked him to remain seated. He became very emotional, and while gently touching me with his cane, he said, ‘You are a representative of the Khalifatul Masih. If you are standing before me, how could I remain seated?’ He had immense respect and honour for Khilafat. He then clutched my hand and said, ‘The land from which you originate is also where the Promised Messiahas appeared.’ His love for the Promised Messiahas and Khilafat was so profound that upon witnessing him, even I began to cry.” Then, he also sent a message to me through Dr Sahib’s phone. He wished to record a message and send it. I will also recount a portion of that message here. In the message he sent for me, he said, “I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammadsa is His Messenger. Peace be upon you, O Khalifatul Masih V, I complete a full reading of the Holy Quran once a week, every week. At every Fajr prayer, I pray for you. O my beloved Caliph, help me and save me. I live in a difficult spiritual predicament.” He further says, “What does the world need other than the truth?” He continues, “I adhere to all your instructions,” and then he says, “The world needs nothing but the truth. Struggling in the cause of Allah is very difficult here; however, I am committed to it. In the war that took place in 1948, I took part when I was 38 years old. I served as a commander in three frontier wars and was rendered homeless in Sinai. My father was a well-known Sufi, and my brother, Muhammad, was a chief judge here in Gaza. There are members of my family who cause difficulties for me. Pray for their guidance and reformation.” He further says, “I only have a few companions in this district (he then named a few of them) who are dear to me as my own sons, one of whom is Tariq Abu Dayyah Sahib. I do not have children of my own.” Then, whilst offering a prayer, he says, “May Allah the Almighty bless you. I am grateful to you. Do accept my allegiance as I affirm my commitment to you until I meet Allah the Almighty on the Day of Judgement. (In other words, he was re-affirming his pledge of allegiance). I renew my pledge of allegiance and affirm that I am a true Ahmadi, in heart and spirit.” He then says, “I hold no belief other than the Ahmadiyya belief.”
Some opponents claimed that he was not an Ahmadi and was merely spreading [the message of] Ahmadiyyat, however, his recorded words are a testament before them. Perhaps, after this, the opponents would have been silenced. May Allah the Almighty elevate his rank and grant recovery to his wife. May Allah the Almighty accept his prayers for the Palestinians, and may He establish peace there and enable the people there to accept the Promised Messiahas.
The second funeral prayer is of Uthman Ahmad Gakorya Sahib of Kenya. He also passed away recently.
اِنَّا لِلّٰہِ وَاِنَّاۤ اِلَيۡہِ رٰجِعُوۡنَ
[‘Surely, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return.’]
He has a long history of serving the Community, spread across many decades. He was born in 1932. In the 1960s, he was introduced to the Community by a pioneer, Arab Ahmadi, the late Salim Afif Sahib. Later, he took the pledge of allegiance in 1964 through respected Maulana Roshan Din Sahib, a missionary of the Jamaat, and entered the fold of the Ahmadiyyat. He superbly upheld this pledge of allegiance till the very end. He was affiliated with the ministry of education.
After Kenya’s independence, he was appointed as the first local principal of Kwale Polytechnic School. Similarly, he also had the honour of being the first local principal of another Polytechnic College, an honour he would speak about frequently. He retired at a high post in the ministry of education. He also had the honour of translating many of the Jamaat’s books into Swahili. He also had the honour of being the first local president of the Nairobi chapter of the Community. He is also among the earliest musiyan in the Jamaat in Kenya. He possessed many excellent qualities. Until his demise, he remained regular in offering the tahajjud prayers [pre-dawn, voluntary prayers]. He was never negligent toward paying alms and financial contributions. He had immense respect in his heart for central missionaries; if any Ahmadi said anything negative about a central missionary or said anything so as to make a complaint, he would stop them immediately. In fact, he would express his displeasure and utter disappointment at this.
He would always advise, saying, “These [missionaries] are those who brought the light of faith to us. You were given the opportunity to accept the Promised Messiahas through them, otherwise, you would have found yourselves in a state of ignorance. Thus, it is their favour upon you and upon your future progeny. For this reason, do not say these [negative] things.” Such were his morals. Our missionaries, and also those who are new, should raise their standards so that they become an example for the local people. Furthermore, the deceased was also a very hospitable host. The majority of his family is firmly attached to the Jamaat and is serving the Jamaat in some capacity or another. One of his sons, Abdul Aziz Gakorya Sahib is serving as the president of Majlis Ansarullah in Kenya. May Allah the Almighty show mercy and forgiveness to the deceased and elevate his station. May God enable his children to follow his example.
(Official Urdu transcript published in the Daily Al Fazl International, 12 January 2024, pp. 2-7. Translated by The Review of Religions.)