14 December 2018
Delivered from Baitul Futuh Mosque
Men of Excellence
After reciting the Tashahud, Ta‘awuz, and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa stated:
From the accounts relating to the Companionsra of the Holy Prophetsa, today, I shall speak about Hazrat Mistahra bin Usasah. His name was Auf, and his title was Mistah. His mother was Hazrat Umme Mistah Salma bint Sakhr, who was the daughter of Raitah bint Sakhr, the maternal aunt of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. (Al-Isabatu Fi Tamyiz Al-Sahaba, Vol. 6, p. 74, Mistah bin Uthathah, Printed in Darul Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1995) (Usdul Ghaba, Vol. 5, p. 150, Mistah bin Uthathah, Dar-ul-Kutb Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2003) (Al-Isti’ab, Vol. 4, p. 1472, Mistah bin Uthathah, Dar-ul-Jeel, Beirut, 1992)
Hazrat Mistahra bin Usasah migrated to Mecca along with Hazrat Ubaidahra bin Harith and his two brothers, Hazrat Tufailra bin Harith and Hazrat Hussainra bin Harith. Prior to undertaking the journey, it was mutually agreed that they would meet at the valley of Naajeh. However, Hazrat Mistahra bin Usasah remained behind because he was bitten by a snake during the journey. The following day, when those people who had already left, came to know about the incident of the snake bite, they went back and then accompanied him to Medina. While in Medina, they all stayed at the house of Hazrat Abdur Rahmanra bin Salama. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra, Vol. 3, p. 37, Ubaidah bin Al-Harith, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1990)
The Holy Prophetsa established a bond of brotherhood between Hazrat Mistahra bin Usasah and Hazrat Zaidra bin Muzayyan. Hazrat Mistahra accompanied the Holy Prophetsa in all the battles, including the Battle of Badr. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra, Vol. 3, p. 37, Ubaidah bin Al-Harith, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1990)
Eight months after the Migration, the Holy Prophetsa sent Hazrat Ubaidahra bin Harith with a cavalry consisting of sixty or, according to one report, eighty horsemen. The Holy Prophetsa had a white flag made for Hazrat Ubaidahra bin Harith, which was held by Hazrat Mistahra bin Usasah. The purpose of this expedition was to stop the trade caravan of the Quraish in its tracks. Abu Sufyan was the leader of the caravan of the Quraish. According to some narrations, this caravan was headed by Ikrimah bin Abi Jahl; the name Miqraz bin Hafs has also been reported. This caravan consisted of 200 people who were transporting trade goods. The party of the Companionsra caught up with the caravan at the Valley of Raabigh, which was also known as Wudaan. This caravan was not only a trading caravan but was also laden with weapons. Moreover, the profits of the trade by this caravan were to be used to wage a war against Muslims. From the events it is proven that they were fully prepared for this.
Nonetheless, when the parties arrived there, no battle took place between them except the exchange of arrows, nor were there any proper lines formed for combat. This incident has previously been mentioned whilst relating the account of another companion. The companion who shot the first arrow from the Muslims was Hazrat Sa‘d bin Abi Waqasra. This was the first arrow to have been shot on behalf of Islam. At that occasion, Hazrat Miqdadra bin Aswad and Hazrat Uyainahra bin Ghazwan (according to Sirat Ibn Hisham and Tarikh al-Tabari it was Utbah bin Ghazwan) broke free from the party of the idolaters and joined the Muslims, as they had already accepted Islam and desired to join the Muslims. This was the second expedition in the history of Islam sent under the leadership of Hazrat Ubaidahra bin Harith. After the exchange of arrows, both parties receded. (This incident has also been mentioned in one of the previous sermons.) The idolaters were in such awe of the Muslims that they assumed that Muslims had a very large army at their disposal to support them. Hence, they went back in fear and the Muslims did not pursue them any further. (Al-Sira Al-Halbiyyah, vol. 3, pp. 215-216, Sirya Ubaidah bin al-Harith, Dar-ul-Kutub Al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2002) (Sirat ibn Hisham, vol. 1, p. 592, Sirya Ubaidah bin al-Harith, Mustafaal-Babi, Egypt, 1955) (Tarikh Al-Tabari, Vol. 2, p. 12, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1987)
This was because their intention was not to initiate a war, rather, it was to stop them and warn them that if they were to make preparations to fight against the Muslims, then the Muslims would also be ready.
During the battle of Khayber, the Holy Prophetsa gave wheat weighing 50 wasq, [a unit of weight] to Hazrat Mistahra and Ibn Ilyas. (In those days, it was customary to give this from the spoils of war and this is all mentioned in Al-Tabaqat-ul-Kubra). He passed away at the age of 56, in the 34 AH, during the Khilafat of Hazrat Uthmanra. It is also reported that he was alive even during the Khilafat of Hazrat Alira and that he participated in the Battle of Siffin alongside Hazrat Alira and passed away the same year in 37 AH. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra, Vol. 3, p. 39, Mistah bin Uthathah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1990) (Al-Isabatu Fi Tamyiz Al-Sahaba, Vol. 6, p. 74, Mistah bin Uthathah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1995)
Hazrat Mistahra is the same person who was under the care of Hazrat Abu Bakrra, who arranged for his maintenance and expenses. However, when the accusation was made against Hazrat Aishara, Hazrat Mistahra was also amongst those who leveled this allegation. At that time, Hazrat Abu Bakrra pledged an oath that he would no longer take care of him and support him. Upon this, the following verse of the Quran was revealed:
وَلَا يَأۡتَلِ أُولُواْ الۡفَضۡلِ مِنْكُمۡ وَالسَّعَةِ أَنْ يُؤۡتُوْا أُوْلِى الۡقُرۡبىٰ وَالۡمَسَـٰكِيْنَ وَالۡمُهـٰجِرِيْنَ فِى سَبِيْلِ اللّٰهِۖ وَلۡيَعۡفُواْ وَلۡيَصۡفَحُوْاۗ أَلَا تُحِبُّوْنَ أَنْ يَغۡفِرَ اللّٰهُ لَكُمۡۗ وَاللّٰهُ غَفُوْرٌ۬ رَّحِيْمٌ
That is, “And let not those who possess wealth and plenty among you swear not to give aught to the kindred and to the needy and to those who have left their homes in the cause of Allah. Let them forgive and pass over the offence. Do you not desire that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Most Forgiving, Merciful.” (Surah al-Nur: V.23)
Hence, this verse was revealed and as a result, Hazrat Abu Bakrra once again took up his care and supported him. Furthermore, when God Almighty revealed the verses regarding the exoneration of Hazrat Aishara, those who raised the accusation were also punished. According to some narrations, Hazrat Mistahra was amongst those people who raised the allegation against Hazrat Aishara and was thus instructed to be punished with lashes by the Holy Prophetsa. (Al-Isabatu Fi Tamyiz Al-Sahaba, Vol. 6, p. 74, Mistah bin Uthathah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1995)
The incident in regard to this allegation [levelled against Hazrat Aishara] is extremely important for it carries a vital lesson for the Muslims. Hence, it has been mentioned in great detail. Furthermore, God Almighty has also revealed verses in the Holy Quran in relation to this.
Nevertheless, the Promised Messiahas states:
“God Almighty has made it an integral part of His own noble attributes to avert prophecies of warning on the basis of repentance, seeking forgiveness, prayer, and charity, so did He teach the same morals to man.”
Whilst relating this incident, the Promised Messiahas has explained the difference between a promise and a warning. The Promised Messiahas further states:
“As is evidenced by the Holy Quran and the Hadith that when, out of sheer maliciousness, the hypocrites had perpetrated a calumny against Hazrat Aishah, may Allah be pleased with her, some unwary companions also had joined in this narrative. (Their intention was not to create disorder, rather they joined owing to their simple-mindedness.) One of those companions used to get his meal, twice a day, from the home of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. Due to this lapse, Hazrat Abu Bakrra pledged that he would never again feed him as a punishment for this misdeed, whereupon the verse was revealed:
وَلۡيَعۡفُواْ وَلۡيَصۡفَحُوٓاْۗ أَلَا تُحِبُّوْنَ أَنْ يَغۡفِرَ اللّٰهُ لَكُمۡ ۗ وَاللّٰهُ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيْمٌ
‘Let them forgive and forbear. Do you not desire that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Most Forgiving, Merciful.’ (Surah al-Nur: V.23)
At that, Hazrat Abu Bakr broke his pledge and restored his meals as usual. It is for this reason that it is part of Islamic morality.” Here, the Promised Messiahas has expounded upon a particular issue that should one pledge something by way of Waid, the breaking of that pledge is a component of good morals.
What is Waid? The Promised Messiahas states:
“For instance, if someone swears that with regard to his servant, he shall strike him fifty times with a shoe, to forgive him on account of his repentance and earnest supplication is the Islamic custom, so that تخلق باخلاق الله [morality mirror the attributes of Allah]. Nevertheless, it is not permissible to break a promise; one will be held accountable for the breach of promise, but not for breaking a pledge of chastisement.” (Zamima Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya, Vol. 5, Ruhani Khazain, Vol. 21, p. 181)
A promise is a pledge, which is made keeping in mind all the negative and positive aspects and it is necessary for one to fulfil it. If one breaks it, they will be held accountable and will also be handed out a punishment for it.
According to a narration in Sahih Bukhari, mentioning the details of the incident of the calumny, Hazrat Aishara narrates the following; since the details of this incident are important, therefore I will also mention these. Hazrat Aishara narrates:
“It was a custom of the Holy Prophetsa that when he intended to embark on a journey, he used to draw lots amongst his wives, then he would take along with him the one on whom the lot fell. On one occasion, before a battle, he drew lots in the same manner, and the lot fell on me.”
Hazrat Aishara states that her name emerged from the lot and so she accompanied the Holy Prophetsa.
“This was the time when injunctions on purdah [observing the veil] had already been revealed. Hence, during this journey, I would sit in a palanquin (a covered seat which would be placed on the back of a camel) and wherever a halt was made, it would be placed on the ground.”
She further states:
“When the Holy Prophetsa set back after having finished from his expedition, and we approached near the city of Medina, one night, the Holy Prophetsa ordered for the departure. When I heard this announcement, I also began to walk, and went ahead of the army in order to attend to the call of nature, and returned after I had finished. (Since she had to attend the call of nature, therefore she walked away to one side). When I returned to my camel, I touched my chest and found that my necklace made from black sapphire had been lost. I went back in search of it and was delayed a short while. In the meantime, those who had been appointed to lift my litter and place it on the back of the camel arrived, and assuming that I was in the litter, lifted it and placed it on the camel.”
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“In that era, women were light in weight and flesh did not accumulate their bodies in abundance, as they used to eat very little food. The attendants, therefore, did not suspect that I was not already in the litter.”
Hazrat Aishara then says:
“Furthermore, at the time, I was still a young girl. Hence, they lifted the litter and also got the camel on its feet and proceeded. In any case, when I returned after finding my necklace, lo and behold, the army had left, and the plain was empty. I thought to myself that I should remain at my place, because when people would realise that I had been left behind, they would surely return. Therefore, I sat on my spot and was soon overcome by sleep. Now, it so happened that Safwan bin Mu‘attal Sulami Zakwani was a companion whose duty was to stay behind the army (so that fallen items, etc., could be safeguarded). When he arrived from behind the army and reached my resting place just before dawn, he found me sleeping there alone. Since he had already seen me prior to the revelation of injunctions relevant to purdah, he recognised me immediately, upon which he became flustered and said, ‘Surely, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return.’ Upon him reciting this, I awoke from my sleep. He then brought the camel near to me and sat it down. I then mounted it. He then began to walk, leading the camel by its halter.”
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“We finally reached the place where the Muslim army had set up camp at midday and everyone was resting in their camps. This is the account, due to which those who were to be ruined, ruined themselves.”
In other words, people started to level allegations against Hazrat Aishara and began issuing false statements about her.
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“The key proponent who was responsible for spreading this slander was Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Salul.
“After this, we reached Medina, and it so happened that as soon as we arrived, I fell ill, and this illness lasted for one month. During this time, the forged statements of the slanderers were noised widely, and rumours were spread. However, until then, I had absolutely no notion of this calumny. However, one thing I did notice that led me to suspect something was not right was that during my period of illness, the Holy Prophetsa did not extend to me the usual affection and kindness that I was accustomed to in illness.
“The allegation was made, rumours spread widely and the Holy Prophetsa also came to learn of this. She says that during her illness, she did not receive the same affection from Holy Prophetsa that she would normally receive.
“When the Holy Prophetsa would visit me, he would only say, ‘Assalamo Alaikum’, and then enquire about my health from my parents. I was completely unaware of this allegation.
“I remained unaware till the point that I had recovered from my illness and was still in a state of weakness, and it was not until Umme Mistah and I went towards the direction of Minasi to attend the call of nature. In those days we used to leave in the night, and this was before the time we had made lavatories close to our homes.”
In those days people would go outside of their homes to attend the call of nature and women would go in the evening when it was nightfall.
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“In those days, we followed the traditional customs of the Arabs and would go into the wilderness to attend the call of nature. Umme Mistah bint Abi Ruham and I were both going when all of a sudden she tripped over her outer garment and stumbled. Upon this she said, ‘Woe be to Mistah.’ I said, ‘What an awful thing you have uttered. Do you say something unpleasant about one who had participated in the Battle of Badr?’ Upon this she replied, ‘O innocent young lady, have you not heard the rumours people have spread?’ It was then that I learnt of the allegation which was being propagated about me. I had recovered from my illness and was still in a state of weakness, but upon hearing this, my illness worsened.
“When I returned home, the Holy Prophetsa came to visit me as usual and said, ‘Assalamo Alaikum, How are you feeling now?’ I sought permission from the Holy Prophetsa to go to my parent’s home as I wanted to find out from them about what was being said about me. The Holy Prophetsa granted permission and I went to them and enquired of my mother about what people were saying. My mother said, ‘O Daughter! Do not worry yourself about this. By God, it is common that when a person has a beautiful wife whom he loves and he also has other wives, the other women say something against her.’ I spontaneously said, ‘Holy is Allah! Are people actually saying these things about me?’ Then I began to weep, and my tears would not stop. I did not sleep all night. At dawn, I was still weeping for such a huge allegation had been levelled against me.
“In the morning, the Holy Prophetsa called Alira bin Abi Talib and Usama bin Zaidra to seek their counsel in regard to leaving his wife and severing his relation with her, because there had been quite a delay in revelation being sent down. (As there had been an allegation raised against her, the Holy Prophetsa sought advice on deciding whether he should stay with Hazrat Aishara or not). Owing to the Holy Prophet’ssa love for his wives, Usamara submitted, ‘O Messenger of Allah! Aishara is your wife and by God, we know nothing but goodness with respect to Aishara.’”
Hazrat Aishara states:
“However, Alira bin Abi Talib, (who was a little haste in nature) said, ‘O Messenger of Allah! Allah the Exalted has not put you in difficulty, and there are plenty of women other than her.’ Hazrat Alira then said, ‘Nonetheless, enquire of the household maid, perhaps she knows something and may be able to tell you the actual truth.’
“Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa called for Barirah and inquired, ‘Have you ever seen anything in Aishara as may be considered suspicious?’ Barirah responded, ‘I swear by that God who has sent you with the truth, I have never seen anything evil about her except that on account of her young age, she is a bit careless. It often happens that she leaves the dough exposed and falls in such a deep sleep that the goats come and consume it.’”
By citing this example, she proved her innocence from any evil, but said her only flaw was that she would be overcome by sleep.
“On the same day, the Holy Prophetsa addressed his Companions and complained about Abdullah bin Ubay bin Salul for he had propagated this allegation. The Holy Prophetsa said, ‘I have been given great grief with respect to my wife. Is there anyone from among you who can take care of such an individual? By God, I know nothing of my wife except piety and goodness. Moreover, I also consider the man who has been mentioned in this connection to be pious (referring to Hazrat Aisha and the other person who was accused in this incident). He has never come to my home in my absence.’
“Upon hearing this address of the Holy Prophetsa, Sa‘d bin Mu‘az, stood up and submitted, ‘O Messenger of Allah! I shall seek revenge against the individual who has raised such an allegation. If this person is from our tribe, we consider him worthy of death, and shall sever his head at once. If he is from our brethren (i.e. from the Khazraj tribe), even still, we are prepared to do as you command.’
“Upon this, Sa‘d bin Ubadah, chief of the Khazraj tribe, stood up, and though he was a righteous man, at the time, he was overcome by the honour of his tribe and said, ‘You have spoken a lie. By God! You shall not kill a man from our tribe, nor do you possess the power to do so.’ Thereafter they began to argue with one another. Upon this, Usaid bin Huzair stood up and addressed Sa‘d bin Ubadah saying, ‘You are a liar, By God! we shall surely kill the one who has made this allegation.’ He even said: ‘In fact you are a hypocrite, for you argue on behalf of the hypocrites.’ This exchange of remarks incensed some from among the Aus and Khazraj, and an altercation almost broke out, to the extent that although no fighting took place, they were close to doing so. But the Holy Prophetsa came down from the pulpit and admonished everyone and diffused the situation. Everyone then fell silent and the Holy Prophetsa also remained silent.”
The narration from Bukhari continues. It is quite a lengthy narration. Hazrat Aishara further states:
“My state was the same as usual, in that my tears would not stop, nor could I sleep. My parents were also with me and I remained as such for two whole nights and one day. I felt as if my liver would burst into pieces and I would die. I was sitting by my parents in this very state, weeping, when a lady from the Ansar sought permission and entered, and began to weep with me in a sympathetic manner. At this, the Messenger of Allahsa arrived in the house of Hazrat Abu Bakrra and sat down next to me. This was the first day that he had sat down with me after the calumny.”
Prior to this, the Holy Prophetsa did not sit next to Hazrat Aishara. He would enquire about her health from far and return or ask through the maid, and when she had returned back home, he would go there and enquire about her. Hazrat Aishara further states:
“A month had elapsed, but no divine revelation had been sent down in my case. For a whole month since the allegation, the Holy Prophetsa did not come and sit next to me, but on that day, he did and was waiting for God Almighty to reveal something.”
Hazrat Aishara then states:
“The Holy Prophetsa recited the Kalimah [Islamic declaration of faith], then he addressed me saying, ‘O Aishara! I have been informed of such and such thing about you.’” This was the first time the Holy Prophetsa enquired about this matter from Hazrat Aishara. “‘If you are innocent, I trust that God shall affirm your innocence. If, however, you have committed a mistake, you should seek forgiveness from God and bow before Him, because when a person bows before God confessing their sin, Allah accepts their repentance, and shows Mercy to them’ When the Holy Prophetsa had finished his address, I noticed that my tears had dried away completely, and there was absolutely no sign of them. At that time, I looked to my father (Hazrat Abu Bakrra) and asked him to respond on my behalf, but he said, ‘By God! I do not know what to say in response to the Holy Prophetsa.’ (She, of course, wanted him to affirm her innocence.) I then turned to my mother to respond on my behalf, but she also said, ‘By God! I do not know what to say in response to the Holy Prophetsa.’”
Hazrat Aishara states:
“At the time, I was a young girl and did not know much of the Quran, but I said, ‘By God, I am aware that certain things which people have rumoured about me have reached you (i.e. that this heinous allegation has been levelled against me) and you have been affected by these statements. In fact, you have considered them to be true.’”
Hazrat Aishara says:
“Hence, if I advocate my innocence, and God surely knows I am innocent, you will, however, doubt me since this rumour has been propagated so much, but if I accept myself as being guilty, despite my being innocent and God Almighty also being aware of my innocence, you will believe me.” If she admitted to it then he may have thought that there was truth behind it.
Hazrat Aishara then said: “By God, I find myself in the situation of the father of Josephas, who said, ‘Patience is better for me, and it is Allah Alone Whose help I seek.”’
“This is what Hazrat Jacobas said to the brothers of Hazrat Josephas that it is Allah Alone Whose help I seek against what these people assert.”
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“I quoted this verse and then turned to the other side and sat on my bed hoping for God Almighty to reveal my innocence.” She knew she was innocent and God Almighty would establish her innocence. “However, by God! I never thought that a revelation would be revealed in my favour. I knew that God Almighty would declare my innocence, but never thought that a revelation would be sent down. I did not consider myself worthy for a Quranic revelation to be sent down to clear me of the charges, and that God the Exalted would declare my innocence in such a manner, whereby he would send down a revelation in the Holy Quran. I thought that perhaps the Messenger of Allah would be shown a vision in his sleep wherein He would declare my innocence.”
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“However, by God, the Holy Prophetsa had not yet left this sitting, nor had any other person of the household left, when he began to receive a revelation and was overtaken by the arduous state, which he would experience upon the receipt of divine revelation. He would sweat so much that even on a cold day, he would be dripping with sweat. After some time, this state left him. The Holy Prophetsa smiled and looked towards me saying, ‘O Aisha! Show gratitude to God for He has affirmed your innocence.’ At this, my mother spontaneously said, ‘O Aisha! Get up and go the Messengersa of Allah.’ However, I said that I would not go to him, nor would I be thankful to anyone but God Almighty. God Almighty had revealed, ‘Verily, those who brought forth the lie was a party from among you.’
“When my innocence had been affirmed by God Almighty through divine revelation, Hazrat Abu Bakrra, who would grant regular support to Mistah bin Usasah due to his kinship, pledged that as Mistah had taken part in slandering Aisha, he would no longer render him this support.
“However, shortly thereafter, the verses of Surah al-Nur were revealed in which God Almighty stated (I have already quoted the verse previously and the translation is as follows):
“‘And let not those who possess wealth and plenty among you swear not to give aught to the kindred and to the needy and to those who have left their homes in the cause of Allah. Let them forgive and pass over the offence. Do you not desire that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Most Forgiving, Merciful.’
“Hazrat Abu Bakrra stated, ‘Indeed, by God, I desire for my sins to be covered and that God Almighty forgives me.’ Thus, the allowance Mistah used to receive was reinstated. Moreover, prior to my being absolved, the Holy Prophetsa enquired of Hazrat Zainabra bint Jahash as to her opinion of me after what had happened. She responded by saying, ‘O Messenger of Allah! I seek to protect my eyes and ears from evil, thus I consider Aisha to be a pious and God-fearing lady.’”
By seeking to protect her eyes and ears meant that she could not utter anything false on account of them and thus she found Aisha to be a pious lady.
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“This was despite the fact that from among all the wives of the Holy Prophetsa, Zainab was the only one who competed with me. However, due to her virtue, Allah the Exalted saved her from taking part in this calumny. However, her sister Hamna bint Jahash was siding with those who had spread the rumours and perished alongside them.” (Sahih Bukhari, Kitab al-Shahadat, Bab Ta’dil al-Nisa…, Hadith 2661, Vol. 4, pp. 721-731, Nazarat Isha’at, Rabwah) (Sahih Bukhari, Kitab al-Maghazi, Bab Hadith al-Ifk, Hadith 4141, Vol. 8, p. 325, Nazarat Isha’at, Rabwah)
Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra has narrated this incident of Hazrat Aishara in Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin [The Life and Character of the Seal of Prophets] which I have already mentioned from Bukhari. The additional aspect mentioned therein is that she narrated:
“When the Companion said:
إِنَّا لِله وَإِنَّا إِلَيۡهِ رَاجِعُوْنَ
[Surely, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return], I woke and immediately covered my face with my scarf, as the commandment regarding the veil had already been revealed. By God, he did not speak a word to me (he did not say anything) and I did not hear any other words uttered by him apart from these (i.e. اِنَّا لِله وَاِنَّا اِلَیْهِ رَاجِعُوْنَ – Surely to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return). Following this, he brought his camel forward, made it kneel down near me and placed his foot on both of its knees so that it did not stand up all of a sudden. Subsequently, I mounted the camel.” (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, p. 563)
In Bukhari it is mentioned that she placed her feet on the hands to mount the camel, however here it states he placed his feet on the knees of the camel so that the camel would not suddenly stand up.
As Hazrat Aishara has mentioned that the revelation of God Almighty in relation to her was of great importance for her. Hazrat Aishara says:
“This revelation was of great significance to me as I was not expecting it.”
In any case, this was a very important incident and there was a grave allegation being raised against a family member of the Holy Prophetsa. Hazrat Aishara held an exalted status and one of the reasons for this was that the Holy Prophetsa had stated about her: “I receive the most revelations in the house of Aisha” and because of the revelation of a specific portion in Surah al-Nur which contained detailed instructions for the believers regarding their reaction towards those who had falsely accused her. Hence, there are ten or eleven verses of the Holy Quran which address this matter. Apart from what I have already stated from the Hadith, now I would like to mention what Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra said about the verse which Hazrat Aishara mentioned. However, firstly, I will share the verse under comment:
إِنَّ الَّذِينَ جَآءُوْ بِالۡإِفۡكِ عُصۡبَةٌ مِّنكُمۡ ۚ لَا تَحۡسَبُوهُ شَرًّا لَّكُم ۖ بَلۡ هُوَ خَيۡرٌ لَّكُمۡ ۚ لِكُلِّ امۡرِىٍٕ مِّنۡهُم مَّا اكۡتَسَبَ مِنَ الۡإِثۡمِ ۚ وَالَّذِىْ تَوَلَّىٰ كِبۡرَهُ مِنۡهُمۡ لَهُ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ
“Verily, those who brought forth the lie are a party from among you. Think it not to be an evil for you; nay, it is good for you. Every one of them shall have his share of what he has earned of the sin; and he among them who took the chief part therein shall have a grievous punishment.” (Surah al-Nur: V.12)
This verse is followed by others in which further details have been mentioned. Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further writes:
“When they arrived in Medina, Abdullah bin Ubay bin Salul and his associates began to spread rumours that God forbid, Hazrat Aishara remained behind intentionally and that she had a relationship with Sufwan.”
This was the companion who had brought her afterwards to Medina on a camel. Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further writes:
“This rumour was repeated so much that some Companionsra, out of their misjudgment, started to believe that this was true. One such companion was Hassanra bin Thabit, another one was Mistahra bin Usasah, and a female companion named Hamnahra bint Jahash who was the Holy Prophet’ssa sister-in-law. Hazrat Aishara was shocked for being left behind to the extent that she became ill after returning to Medina. Since she was very young, the fear of being left alone in the wilderness was a factor in her becoming ill. This is what she was going through and at the same time the hypocrites continued to spread rumours, which eventually reached the Holy Prophetsa. Due to her illness, the Holy Prophetsa did not ask Hazrat Aishara about the allegations being raised by the hypocrites. At the same time, the rumours were spreading day by day.
“Hazrat Aishara states, ‘I was astonished to see the Holy Prophetsa when he would return home. His face looked indifferent and he would not speak to me.’ She states, ‘He would seem extremely worried and would ask others about her condition, then leave. She states, ‘I sought his permission one day and left for my parents’ house.’ It was here that the incident took place when she left to attend the call of nature with another woman who was her relative and would also go with her. The lady mentioned the name of her son Mistah and said, ‘May he be ruined.’ Upon hearing this, Hazrat Aishara enquired, ‘Why would you say such a thing?’ The woman responded, ‘Why should I not say such things? Are you not aware of what he has been saying?’”
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states:
“This woman was looking for an opportunity to mention to Hazrat Aishara the things that were being said and what she was being accused of because she was not aware of this. When Hazrat Aishara heard about it, she became distressed. She returned home and, as it was mentioned before, she had not fully recovered, but knowing what was being said about her increased her illness.”
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra continues to narrate the incident:
“The Holy Prophetsa called Hazrat Umarra, Hazrat Alira and Usama bin Zaidra for consultation with regard to what to do about this matter. Hazrat Umarra and Usama bin Zaidra both stated, ‘This is a false accusation which has been spread by the hypocrites. There is no truth to it whatsoever.’ However, Hazrat Alira who was slightly haste in his nature stated, ‘Whether it is true or not, what is the need of maintaining relations with a woman who has been accused of such an allegation?’ At the same time, as it has already been mentioned, he also said, ‘You could ask her maid. If there is something, she would know.’ Therefore, the Holy Prophetsa asked Barirah, Hazrat Aisha’sra maid, ‘Are you aware of any flaws in Aisha?’ She responded, ‘Apart from her habit of falling asleep due to her tender age, there are no flaws in her.’ She narrated the same incident which was mentioned before, that is, she falls asleep quickly and falls into deep sleep. After listening to this, the Holy Prophetsa came outside and gathered the companions. Then he said, ‘Who shall guard me from the person who has caused me this pain?’ The Holy Prophetsa was speaking about Abdullah bin Ubay bin Salul who had caused him this pain. Hazrat Sa‘d bin Mu‘az, who was the chief of the Aus tribe, stood up and said, ‘O Messengersa of Allah! We are ready to kill that person if he is amongst us. If he is amongst the Khazraj, even then we are ready to kill him.’”
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further states:
“Satan is constantly in search of opportunities to cause mischief and he did not let this occasion pass either. The Khazraj tribe was unaware of just how much grief this caused the Holy Prophetsa, so when Sa‘d bin Mu‘az spoke up, other tribes became incensed. Sa‘d bin Ubadah then stood up telling Sa‘d bin Mu‘az, ‘You would never kill one of our people. You do not have the strength to do so.’ During this exchange of words, another companion stood up and said, ‘We will kill him and let’s see who tries to protect him.’”
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further writes:
“This confrontation did not remain confined to mere words, it escalated to the point where the people of the Aus and Khazraj tribes began drawing their swords from their sheaths and were close to fighting one another. It was only with great difficulty that the Holy Prophetsa was able to calm them down. The Aus tribe said that they would kill whoever had grieved the Holy Prophetsa, whereas the Khazraj tribe claimed that this was not being said out of their sincerity, as the Aus tribe were well-aware that the person was from among the Khazraj tribe and this is the only reason why they made such a claim. Nonetheless, it is well-documented that the Holy Prophetsa had love for both these tribes, but Satan had caused mischief and discord between the two of them.”
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further writes:
“Anyone can easily understand how delicate the situation was at that time. On one side, the Holy Prophetsa had been afflicted with so much misery, and on the other side, the state of affairs between the Muslims had reached the point where swords were being raised. Hence, it is Satan who causes such disarray, even amongst people of pious nature.”
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further relates the same incident as has been related by Hazrat Aishara when she was asked about the event. In reply to which she said:
“If I accept [what they assert] I will be lying and if I plead my innocence, the people will not believe me. Hence, at this point, I will only repeat what Jacobas, the father of Josephas said:
فَصَبۡرٌ جَمِيلٌ ۖ وَاللّٰهُ الۡمُسۡتَعَانُ
That is, ‘So comely patience is good for me. And it is Allah alone Whose help is to be sought.’ (Surah Yusuf: V.19)
Hazrat Aishara then said that she stood up and went over to her bed. Soon after this, the verse (which I recited earlier) was revealed in which it stated, ‘Verily, those who brought forth the lie are a party from among you. Think it not to be an evil for you; nay, it is good for you. Because through this, the punishment of those people who labelled allegations would soon come to light and also you have been bestowed a wise teaching. Indeed, every one of them shall have his share of what he has earned of the sin; and he among them who took the chief part therein shall have a grievous punishment.’
“Nevertheless, after this revelation, the Holy Prophet’s face began to radiate. Hazrat Aishara says that her mother told her to stand and thank the Holy Prophetsa, but she said that she would only thank God Almighty.” (Tafsir-e-Kabir, Vol. 6, pp. 269-271)
Nonetheless, as has been mentioned earlier, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has also explained this incident in one of his sermons and stated:
“Due to labelling allegations against Hazrat Aishara, three people received lashes. From among them, one was Hassanra bin Thabit, who was poet laureate to the Holy Prophetsa, one was Mistahra, who was the uncle of Hazrat Aishara and also the cousin of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. He was so poor that he lived in the house of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. He would eat from there and Hazrat Abu Bakrra would get clothes made for him. The third person was a woman; all three received punishments.” (Khutbaat-e-Mahmudra, Vol. 18, pp. 279-280)
This is also mentioned in Sunan Abi Daud. (Sunan Abi Daud, Kitab-ul-Hudud, Bab Hadd-ul-Qazif, Hadith 4474-4475)
According to some narrations they received punishment, whereas others are of the opinion that they did not receive any punishment. (Tafsir al-Qurtubi, Vol. 15, p. 169, Surah Nur, Mu’assisa al-Risala, Beirut, 2006)
Nonetheless, irrespective of whether they received punishment or not, God Almighty forgave them. He received the punishment for this in this world, but I as I mentioned earlier, he also participated in later expeditions. He was a Badri companion and therefore, Hazrat Mistahra held a lofty status. God Almighty ensured he had a pious end and preserved his elevated rank. May God Almighty continue to elevate his status.
(Translated by the Review of Religions)