Incomparable courage of the Holy Prophet’s Companions

Jazeb Hafeez, Student Jamia Ahmadiyya UK
Medina 2
Beris Creatives | Unsplash

Throughout history, there have been innumerable figures who have epitomised and shown incredible bravery and courage in the face of hardship and suffering. The Companions of the Prophet Muhammadsa were exemplars of bravery; their unwavering levels of courage and loyalty left a permanent mark on the pages of history.

These extraordinary individuals stood alongside the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa in times of unimaginable pain and torture in the early days of Islam. These men and women sacrificed their lives, wealth, time, and honour for the sake of Islam.

From the stories of the early converts to the titan warriors who later entered the fold of Islam, the companions fearlessly followed the path of righteousness, leaving behind such examples of morality and compassion that have inspired generations and continue to do so.

This article aims to delve into the remarkable acts of bravery and courage displayed by the companions of the Holy Prophetsa, exploring the great impact of their bravery and the lessons we can take from their examples.

Character of the Holy Prophet’ssa Companions

I would like to briefly mention one incident that summarises the levels of bravery and loyalty of these Companions. The Holy Quran states regarding the Jewish companions of Hazrat Musaas:

قَالُوۡا يٰمُوۡسٰۤي اِنَّا لَنۡ نَّدۡخُلَہَاۤ اَبَدًا مَّا دَامُوۡا فِيۡہَا فَاذۡہَبۡ اَنۡتَ وَرَبُّکَ فَقَاتِلَاۤ اِنَّا ہٰہُنَا قٰعِدُوۡنَ

Meaning, “They said, ‘O Moses, we will never enter it, so long as they are in it. So go thou and thy Lord and fight, [and] here we sit.’” (Surah al-Ma’idah, Ch.5: V.25) Similarly, regarding the Companions of Prophet Jesusas, in the Bible it states, “But Jesus asked him, ‘Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?’” (Luke 22:.47-49)

However, despite facing many hardships and trials, the Companions of the Holy Prophetsa had a completely different and distinct mindset in comparison to the companions of Mosesas and Jesusas. This can be seen in the incident of Hazrat Miqdad bin Aswadra in the build-up to the Battle of Badr. The Muslims were outnumbered three to one, and fear and panic had slowly begun rippling through the ranks of the Muslims. At this moment, Hazrat Miqdad bin Aswadra stood up and passionately said to the Holy Prophetsa:

 فَقَالَ لاَ نَقُولُ كَمَا قَالَ قَوْمُ مُوسَى ‏{‏اذْهَبْ أَنْتَ وَرَبُّكَ فَقَاتِلاَ‏}‏ وَلَكِنَّا نُقَاتِلُ عَنْ يَمِينِكَ وَعَنْ شِمَالِكَ وَبَيْنَ يَدَيْكَ وَخَلْفَكَ‏.‏ فَرَأَيْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى اللّٰه عليه وسلم أَشْرَقَ وَجْهُهُ وَسَرَّهُ‏.‏ يَعْنِي قَوْلَهُ‏.‏

“We will not say, as the People of Mosesas said: ‘Go you and your Lord and fight you two’. But we shall fight on your right and on your left, in front of you and behind you.” The narrator then adds that the Holy Prophetsa was delighted by this, and his face filled up with happiness. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith 288)

Despite understanding the severity of the situation and the risk to life that there was, the Companions were ready to lay down their lives for Islam and embrace death happily. This incident highlights the bravery and courage of these men and their love for their beloved master.

The reason why these companions had the highest levels of moral conduct and bravery was because the greatest human to ever exist walked among them, and they learned every small detail from him. Hence, this means that if the Companions were brave, the bravest out of all of them had to be Muhammadsa. In the books of hadith we find regarding the Holy Prophetsa:

إِذَا احْمَرَّ الْبَأْسُ نَتَّقِي بِهِ وَإِنَّ الشُّجَاعَ مِنَّا لَلَّذِي يُحَاذِي بِهِ ‏.‏ يَعْنِي النَّبِيَّ صلى اللّٰه عليه وسلم ‏.‏

“When the battle grew fierce, we, by God, would seek protection by his side. And the bravest among us was he who confronted the onslaught, and it was the Prophetsa.” (Sahih Muslim, Hadith 1776b)

If we look at recent conflicts in the last 100 years or so, we see that most war generals and commanders-in-chief rarely fight on the front lines. In the First and Second World Wars, the British and German generals would be hundreds of miles away from the frontlines and would often indulge in luxurious foods completely safe from all the danger, while their men would be dying from hunger and starvation. However, the Holy Prophetsa fought his battles with the Companions on the ground. And instead of hiding away or being the most protected, from this hadith, we can see that he would fight in the most severe parts of the battle. And, despite all his enemies targeting him, he would place his full trust in Allah and go forth fighting without any fear. This was his noble example.

Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiquera

عَبْدِ اللّٰهِ بْنِ سَلَمَةَ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ عَلِيّا، يَقُولُ خَيْرُ النَّاسِ بَعْدَ رَسُولِ اللّٰهِ ـ صلى اللّٰه عليه وسلم ـ أَبُو بَكْرٍ وَخَيْرُ النَّاسِ بَعْدَ أَبِي بَكْرٍ عُمَرُ

“It was narrated that ‘Abdullah bin Salimah said: “I heard ‘Ali say: ‘The best of people after Allah’s Messengersa is Abu Bakrra, and the best of people after Abu Bakrra is ‘Umarra’” (Sunan ibn Majah, Hadith 106)

Hazrat Abu Bakrra stood by the Holy Prophetsa in every situation. He was the closest friend of the Holy Prophetsa and was one of the first people to accept Islam at his hands. During the Battle of Badr, when the Companions had decided to guard the tent of the Holy Prophetsa, Hazrat Abu Bakrra took the first step forward and offered his protection. He was also given the largest flag in the Battle of Tabuk and upheld this responsibility with great care and loyalty. Even when he became the first Khalifa of Islam, Hazrat Abu Bakrra bravely fought and defeated great uprisings that began to unfold in Islam. Some people once asked the Companions who the bravest companion was during the lifetime of the Holy Prophetsa. They responded by saying:

“The bravest among them was considered to be the one who stood by the Holy Prophetsa the most, especially during battle. This was the most dangerous place to be in terms of the threat of an enemy attack. Hence, only the bravest person, and often, it was Hazrat Abu Bakrra standing next to the Holy Prophetsa, and so the Companions said that they saw him to be the bravest. Similarly, just as Gabriel accompanied the Holy Prophetsa on the Night Journey, so too did Hazrat Abu Bakrra accompany the Holy Prophetsa during his migration.” (

An incident of Hazrat Alira ibn Abi Talib

The Companions not only displayed bravery during wars and battles but also showed no fear in any sort of situation they were faced with. Hazrat Ali ibn Abi Talibra was a brave and skilled warrior and participated in most battles alongside the Holy Prophetsa. Often in wars, before the actual war would begin, three warriors from each side would step up in a one-to-one combat. The Holy Prophetsa would often choose Hazrat Alira demonstrating his skill and bravery, but this also shows the level of trust the Holy Prophetsa had in Hazrat Alira.

When the evil leaders of the Quraish decided that the only method left to end Islam and to stop it from spreading was to assassinate the Holy Prophetsa, they lay siege to his house and waited like vultures to kill him. However, despite the danger and fear at the time, the Holy Prophetsa asked Hazrat Alira to act as a decoy and sleep in his bed for the night. Hazrat Alira without hesitating said yes and wrapped himself in a cloak similar to that of the Holy Prophetsa and posed as him whilst the Holy Prophetsa quietly slipped away from beneath the noses of the enemies at nightfall. Hazrat Alira was so loyal to the Holy Prophetsa and loved him immensely, so much so that it is narrated by Hazrat Hubshi bin Junadahra that the Holy Prophetsa stated:

‏ عَلِيٌّ مِنِّي وَأَنَا مِنْ عَلِيٍّ وَلاَ يُؤَدِّي عَنِّي إِلاَّ أَنَا أَوْ عَلِيٌّ ‏‏

Meaning that “Alira is from me, and I am from Alira. And none should represent me except myself or Alira.” The following morning, the Quraish leaders were left fuming when they found Hazrat Alira in bed instead of the Holy Prophetsa. And again, a beautiful example of Hazrat Ali’sra bravery can be seen.

Hazrat Talhara bin Ubaidullah

Hazrat Talhara was among the ten companions who were given glad tidings of paradise during the lifetime of the Prophetsa. He is especially remembered for his bravery shown during the battle of Uhud, in which he raised his hand to defend the blessed countenance of the Prophetsa).

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra, regarding this incident, writes:

“A few companions rushed to the Holy Prophetsa and formed a ring around him. They could not have been more than thirty in total. The Meccan army attacked this ring fiercely, where the Holy Prophetsa was stood. One by one, the Muslims in the ring fell under the blows of Meccan swordsmen. Aside from the Meccans, who were with swords, from the hill, the archers sent volleys of arrows towards the Holy Prophetsa. (Upon witnessing that the enemy was relentlessly firing arrows), at that time, Talha, one of the Quraysh and the Muhajirin (Meccan Muslims who had taken refuge in Medina), saw that the enemy arrows were all directed to the face of the Prophetsa. He stretched out his hand and held it up against the Prophet’ssa face. Arrow after arrow struck Talha’sra hand, yet this brave and valiant warrior did not allow his hand to move. With each shot, Talha’s hand was pierced through. Ultimately, it was completely mutilated, and Talhara lost his hand.

“Many years later, during the time of the Fourth Khalifa of Islam, when internal dissensions had raised their head, Talhara was tauntingly described by an enemy as the handless Talha. One companion replied, ‘Handless, yes, but do you know where he lost his hand? At the Battle of Uhud, in which he raised his hand to shield the Prophet’ssa face from the enemy’s arrows.’ Long after the Battle of Uhud someone asked Talhara, ‘Did not your hand hurt under the arrow shots and the pain make you cry in anguish?’ Talhara replied, ‘Indeed it hurt me, and it almost made me cry in anguish, but I resisted both because I knew that if my hand shook even slightly, it would expose the Prophet’ssa face to the volley of enemy arrows.’” (Deebacha Tafsir-ul-Quran, Anwarul Ulum, Vol. 20, p. 250)

This incident shows how much love and concern the companions had for the protection of the Holy Prophetsa that despite having to lose their limbs, these men smiled in the face of the enemy and took every ounce of pain to protect their Beloved This example of sacrifice and bravery is truly inspirational.

Hazrat Abdullah bin Rawahahra

In one of his Friday sermons, regarding the blessed examples of the companions, Beloved Huzooraa mentioned of the bravery of Hazrat Abdullah bin Rawahahra. Huzooraa stated:

“Hazrat Abdullahra bin Rawaha demonstrated great mettle in the battlefield. Hazrat Nu‘man bin Bashir would later on narrate, “When Hazrat Ja‘farra was martyred, Hazrat Abdullahra bin Rawaha’s name was called, who, at the time, was to the side of the army. He came forward while addressing himself in the following couplet from his war poetry” the translation of which is: “O my soul! Will you not battle in such a manner that you give up your life? You have already entered the pool of death, and the time for the fulfilment of your desire to attain martyrdom is nigh. If you were to offer your life as a tribute right now, then perhaps you will obtain a good ending.”

“Mus‘abra bin Shiba narrates:

“‘After the martyrdom of Hazrat Zaidra and Hazrat Ja‘farra, Hazrat Abdullahra bin Rawaha came to the front lines. A spear struck him, and a stream of blood gushed forth. He raised his hands, caught this blood and rubbed it on his face, after which he fell down in the middle of the army lines of the enemy and the Muslims. However, he continued to encourage the Muslims as their army general until his last breath. While motivating the Muslims in a most effective and passionate manner, he sought their help and said, ‘Look, O Muslims! Your brother’s body is lying in front of the enemy. Come forward and push the enemy away from this path and drive them out.’” hence, at that moment, the Muslims fiercely and successively attacked the enemies so much so that Hazrat ‘Abdullah also attained martyrdom.’ (Usdul Ghabah, vol. 3, pp. 237-238, Bab Abdullahra bin Rawaha, Darul Kutub al-‘ilmiyah, Beirut 1996;”

The high level of bravery and zeal shown by the companions of the Holy Prophetsa was not only limited to just the male companions; rather, many of the female companions also exhibited parallel levels of bravery and courage.

Hazrat Umm Umarahra

Hazrat Umm Umarah bint Haritha, may Allah be pleased with her,was a well-known companion of the Holy Prophetsa. She proved to people that women could be as brave as men when needed. Hazrat Umm Umarahra tirelessly participated in many battles alongside the Holy Prophetsa demonstrating bravery and courage on many occasions. She was renowned for her skill in nursing and treating the wounded, as well as providing support on the battlefield. She could also fight when needed. Hence, her very character and service serve as an inspiration to other Muslim women. The following incident shows exactly this quality of hers.

“On this delicate occasion, many brave men wavered, but this brave woman stood steadfast against the attacks of the enemy. When one non-believer attacked her suddenly with a sword, she defended the blow with her shield, and the non-believer ran away. When he attacked her again, she stopped him with her shield again and swung her sword with such force at the feet of his horse, that both the horse and the rider fell to the ground. The Holy Prophetsa witnessed this entire incident. He asked her son Abdullahra to go help his mother. Abdullahra immediately ran to aid Hazrat Umm Umarahra and killed that non-believer. At the same time, another non-believer attacked Abdullahra and wounded his left arm. Hazrat Umm Umarahra immediately put a bandage around her son’s wound and said,  “Son! Go fight till your last breath!” When the Holy Prophetsa saw her sacrifice, he said:

من يطيق ما يطيقين يا ام عمارة

“O Umm Umarahra! No one has the strength you possess!”

That very instant, the non-believer returned and attacked  them again. The Holy Prophetsa warned her, “Beware, Umm Umarahra! He is the same person who wounded Abdullahra earlier!” Hazrat Umm Umarahra launched her sword at the  attacker with such vengeance, she cut him into two pieces. Hazrat Umm Umarahra narrates, “The Holy Prophetsa laughed at this so much that his teeth were visible, and he said, ‘O Umm Umarahra! You took revenge from him after all!’” At that moment, an insolent man threw a stone at the Holy Prophetsa and broke two of his teeth. A non-believer named Ibn-e-Qami’ah then threw some more stones at the Holy Prophetsa which caused some pieces of his armour to pierce into his cheek. The Muslim soldiers immediately transferred their attention to the wounded Prophetsa.

Ibn-e-Qami’ah launched on his horse again and swung his sword at the Holy Prophetsa. Hazrat Umm Umarahra was standing nearby, so she took this attack on her shield and attacked Ibn-e-Qami’ah back. Since he was wearing double armour, her sword couldn’t wound him, and it fell to the ground. Ibn-e-Qami’ah attacked her back and deeply wounded her shoulder. However, he could not dare return for another attack and ran off.” (Umm Umarahra, Nafisa Bashir, pp. 9-11)

In conclusion, the above-mentioned incidents are just a few of the examples showing the bravery of the companions of the Holy Prophetsa. They showed the highest levels of bravery, courage, commitment and loyalty to Islam and the Prophetsa. Their astonishing contributions on and off the battlefield serve as a reminder of what can be achieved by humanity when following the path of righteousness and faith and trust in Allah. May Allah enable us all to learn from and instil these examples into ourselves also. Amin.

No posts to display


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here