18 January 2019
Men of Excellence
After reciting the Tashahud, Ta‘awuz, and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa stated:
Today, I will mention the accounts relating to Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra. A very detailed account of his life is recorded in history. He played a role in some of the most important events in the history of Islam and had the honour of being a part of them. These accounts are of such significance that it ought to be mentioned in detail.
His title was Abu Amr and he belonged to the tribe of Azd. He was an African slave of Tufail bin Abdullah bin Sakhbarah, who was the half-brother of Hazrat Aishara. The term used here for half-brother in this case is because they were born from the same mother but had different fathers. He was amongst those who were the first to accept Islam. He had accepted Islam before the Messengersa of Allah went to Dar-e-Arqam, and he used to graze the goats of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. Many a hardship was inflicted upon him by the disbelievers after he accepted Islam. Later on, Hazrat Abu Bakrra bought and set him free.
During the migration to Medina, when the Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra took shelter in the cave on Mount Thaur, Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra used to graze the goats of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. Hazrat Abu Bakrra had instructed him to bring the goats to them. Hence, he used to graze the goats all day long and then take them close to the cave on Mount Thaur. Thereafter, the Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra used to milk the goats themselves.
When Abdullah bin Abi Bakr used to go and visit them, i.e. the Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra, Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra would follow after him so that his footsteps may be erased, lest the disbelievers become aware of where Hazrat Abu Bakr’s son was going and thus become suspicious. When the Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra left the cave and proceeded to Medina, Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra also migrated with them and Hazrat Abu Bakrra sat him behind him on his camel. An idolater from the Banu Adeel was a guide for them. (Usdul Ghaba, Vol. 3, p. 134, Aamir bin Fuhairahra, Dar-ul-Kutub Al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2003)
After the migration, the Holy Prophetsa established a bond of brotherhood between Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra and Hazrat Harith bin Aus bin Mu‘adhra. Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra participated in the Battles of Badr and Uhud. He was martyred during the incident of Bi’r-e-Ma‘unah at the age of 40. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra, Vol. 3, p. 174, Aamir bin Fuhairahra, Dar-ul-Kutub Al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1990)
Prior to the migration, Hazrat Abu Bakrra freed seven such slaves who used to be tortured for the sake of God Almighty. Hazrat Bilalra was one of them and Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra was also among those. (Usdul Ghaba, Vol. 3, p. 319, Abdullah bin Uthman Abu Bakr Siddiqra, Dar-ul-Kutub Al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2003)
Narrating the incident of migration, Hazrat Aishara states:
“Once we were sitting in Hazrat Abu Bakr’sra house at noon,” they were sitting in their own home, “and someone informed Hazrat Abu Bakrra that the Holy Prophetsa was approaching with a cloth wrapped over his head [to shield from the heat]. The Holy Prophetsa came at a time in which he would not normally visit. When he arrived, Hazrat Abu Bakrra said, ‘May my parents be sacrificed for his sake; by God, the fact that he is coming at this time indicates that it is indeed a serious matter.’”
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“By this time, the Holy Prophetsa arrived at the house and sought permission to enter. Hazrat Abu Bakrra permitted him and the Holy Prophetsa entered. The Holy Prophetsa said to Hazrat Abu Bakrra, ‘Request everyone who is with you to leave the room’. Hazrat Abu Bakrra replied, ‘O Prophetsa of Allah! May my parents be sacrificed for your sake; there are only your family members present in the house, i.e. Hazrat Aishara and her mother, Umm-e-Roman.’ Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa said, ‘I have been granted permission to migrate.’ Hazrat Abu Bakrra said, ‘O Prophetsa of Allah! May my parents be sacrificed for your sake; please take me with you.’ Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa said, ‘Indeed, you should come with me.’ Following this, Hazrat Abu Bakrra said, ‘May my parents be sacrificed for your sake. If I am to accompany you, you should take one of my two camels to travel with.’ The Holy Prophetsa replied, ‘I will take it in exchange for a price.’”
Hazrat Aishara further narrates:
“Hence, we quickly prepared and packed their items. We prepared some provisions for them and packed them in a leather bag. The daughter of Hazrat Abu Bakrra, Hazrat Asmara, cut a piece off her waist band and tied the bag with it. For this reason, she is known as Zat-un-Nitaq. Following this, the Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra arrived at a cave in the mountain of Thaur and took shelter there for three nights. Hazrat Abdullah bin Abi Bakrra used to go and spend the night with them. At that time, he was an intelligent and clever young man.” That is, he was quite mature at the time. “He would leave them when it was still dark, therefore returning in the early morning when it was still dark, and he would spend the morning with the Quraish of Mecca as if he spent the night there. Whatever schemes he heard from them, i.e. from the disbelievers, he would make a careful note of it and under the cover of darkness, he would reach the cave and relate this to them.” As he stayed in Mecca the entire day, he would relate all of the schemes of the disbelievers to the Holy Prophetsa at night. “Hazrat Abu Bakr’sra slave, Aamir bin Fuhairahra, would graze the goats nearby and just after nightfall, he would take one of the goats for milk to them.
“Aamir bin Fuhairahra would go to his herd in the latter part of the night and call them in; he did this for three nights. The Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra hired an individual from the tribe of Banu Adeel in order to show them the way. He belonged to Banu Abd bin Adi and he was an extremely experienced guide. He had made a covenant with the tribe of As bin Wail, and he followed the religion of the disbelievers of the Quraish. The Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra both trusted this individual even though he was a disbeliever and raised among the Quraish. Nevertheless, the Holy Prophetsa trusted him, handed his camels for the journey to him and took this promise from him that he would arrive at the cave of Thaurin the morning after three days. Aamir bin Fuhairahra and the guide accompanied them. The guide took the three of them on a path along the coastline.”
This is a narration from Bukhari. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab Manaaqib Al-Ansar, Bab Hijratun Nabi, Hadith 3905)
Suraqa bin Malik bin Jo‘sham relates:
“The messengers of the disbelievers of Quraish came to us and fixed a reward for anyone who would either kill the Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra or capture them. While I was sitting in a gathering of my tribe, Banu Mudlij, one of them [messengers] came before us. At the time, they were discussing as to how to capture or kill the Holy Prophetsa and how to attack him. Whilst these matters were being discussed in our gathering, an individual approached us whilst we were seated and stood beside us. He then said, ‘Suraqa, I saw some shadows along the coastline a few moments ago and I believe that this was Muhammadsa and his companions.’”
Suraqa further relates:
“I realised that indeed it was them [the Holy Prophetsa and his companions]. However, I told him that this is most certainly not him, rather it is so and so who just left from us now.” By doing this he dismissed his statement. “Thereafter, I remained in the gathering for a short while.”
Suraqa was tempted by the reward and did not want this individual to follow them lest he also partook a share of the reward. Hence, he says:
“Nevertheless, I dismissed his statement, got up after a short while, went home and told my servant to take out my horse and to keep it on the other side of the hill. In other words, there was a small hill behind [the house] and I said to her to take my horse there and to keep it there, ready for me. Thereafter, I took my spear and left from the rear of the house. I placed the front end of my spear into the ground, and mounted the horse with the support of the other end of the spear.” He is narrating his own incident and how he used the support of the spear in order to mount the horse.
He further states:
“After having mounted the horse, I then gave it a light pat to make it run and it began to gallop forward. When I got close to them” i.e. the Holy Prophetsa, “suddenly the horse stumbled in such a manner that I fell off it. I stood up, lowered my hand into my quiver, took out an arrow and took an omen from it in order to determine whether I would be able to harm them or not; that is, whether I would be able to fulfil my intention of killing them or capturing them.”
He further relates:
“I received an omen that I did not desire.” That is, the omen was not in my favour and indicated that I would not succeed in capturing them.”
He further states:
“Contrary to my omen, I mounted my horse again and galloped forward until I reached so close that I could hear the Holy Prophetsa recite the Quran. The Holy Prophetsa did not turn to look around, but Hazrat Abu Bakrra would continuously turn to look around. The front legs of my horse were dug into the ground up to its knees. A short while later, again as I drew close to them, it so happened that the front legs of my horse dug into the sand causing me to fall down. I stood up and scolded the horse, but it was unable to pull its legs out of the ground. After exerting a lot of effort, eventually it was able to free both of its legs, causing the sand to rise into the air.”
That is, it was stuck in to the sand to such an extent that when it forcefully removed its legs, it removed so much sand with it that it seemed as if a cloud of dust had spread across.
“At this point, I took another omen from my arrows and I once again received an omen that I did not desire, meaning that I would not be able to capture the Holy Prophetsa. It was at that moment that I called out to the Holy Prophetsa and said that he was now safe from me and they stopped. I told him that I had no intention anymore to cause him any harm.”
He further says, “I then mounted my horse and rode towards them.”
When his intentions changed, the horse started to ride along without any problems and reached the Holy Prophetsa, or perhaps they also came towards him or stopped.
He further relates:
“Seeing the hurdles and hindrances that I faced in trying to reach them, I sensed that the Holy Prophetsa would certainly succeed. I said to the Holy Prophetsa that his tribe had fixed blood money in return of him and I informed him of all their evil plans.”
That is, he informed him of the details of all the evil intentions of the disbelievers. He then says:
“I presented my provisions to them and said, ‘Since you are setting out on a journey, therefore here are some provisions for the journey’. However, the Holy Prophetsa did not accept it and said that he did not require it. The only request he made was that I should not inform anyone of their journey,” meaning not to disclose to anyone about the route they were taking.
He then further states:
“I requested the Holy Prophetsa to grant me something in writing which would serve as a means of granting me protection. The Holy Prophetsa instructed Aamir bin Fuhairahra (the freed Abyssinian slave) to write this down, which he did so on a piece of leather. After this, the Holy Prophetsa continued his journey.”
“Urwah bin Zubair informed me that the Holy Prophetsa met with Hazrat Zubairra who was returning from a trading expedition from Syria with a Muslim caravan. Hazrat Zubairra gave the Holy Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra some white garments. The Muslims of Medina by then had heard the news of the Holy Prophet’ssa departure from Mecca. They would visit the ground of Harrah every morning and would wait there until the intensity of the afternoon heat would make them return.”
Meaning that they would wait until midday and when it would become intensely hot, they would return due to the heat. And they would do this every day in anticipation of the Holy Prophet’ssa arrival. He further states:
“One day after waiting for a long time and when they had returned to their homes, a Jewish person climbed the top of his house to check something and saw the Holy Prophetsa along with his companions dressed in white clothes. The shimmering in the air from the heat was disappearing,” meaning that from a distance he could only see obscure figures, but gradually their faces became more visible.
“The Jew could not help but proclaim: ‘O people of Arabia! Your leader who you were waiting for has arrived.’”
This is because he was aware that the Muslims would visit a particular location every day in wait of him.
“When the Muslims heard this announcement, they immediately took hold of their weapons and gathered in the ground of Harrah to welcome the Holy Prophetsa. The Holy Prophetsa, along with the companions, turned towards his right and dismounted in the neighborhood of Bani Amr bin Auf. This took place on a Monday during the month of Rabi‘ al-Awal. Hazrat Abu Bakrra stood up to meet with the people and the Holy Prophetsa remained quietly seated. Those amongst the Ansar who had not yet seen the Holy Prophetsa began offering the greetings of peace to Hazrat Abu Bakrra until the sun began to shine upon the Holy Prophetsa.”
Since a lot of time had elapsed and the heat had intensified, there was no longer any shade.
“Therefore, Hazrat Abu Bakrra provided the Holy Prophetsa a shade with his cloak and it was only then that the people recognised the Holy Prophetsa. The Prophetsa of Allah stayed in the neighborhood of Banu Amr bin Auf for a little more than ten nights and the mosque, the foundation of which was based upon righteousness, was constructed and the Holy Prophetsa offered his prayers inside it. Afterwards, he mounted on his camel and people began walking along with him. His camel entered Medina and settled at the location where Masjid-e-Nabwi (The Mosque of the Prophet) is situated today.
“At the time, a few Muslims would offer their prayers at this location and it was a place where Sohail and Sahal would dry their dates.”
It was an open plain where these two orphan boys would dry the dates from their land. Hazrat Sa‘d bin Zaraarah was responsible for their upbringing.
“When the camel of the Holy Prophetsa sat down, he said: ‘If Allah wills, this will be my place of residence.’ Then the Holy Prophetsa called for those two boys and enquired about the price for the piece of land for the construction of the mosque. They responded: ‘O Messengersa of Allah! We give you this land for free.’ The Holy Prophetsa refused to obtain this piece of land from them for free and purchased it instead. Then the mosque was constructed. The Messengersa of Allah also carried the bricks with the people during its construction. During this time he said:
هَذَا الحِمَالُ لَا حِمَالَ خَيْبَر
هَذَا اَبَرُّ رَبَّنَا وَاَطْهَر
‘This load is not like the burden of Khaibar. In fact, O our Lord! This weight is very wonderful and pure.’ He would also state:
اَللّٰهُمَّ اِنَّ الْاَجْرَ اَجْرُ الْاٰخِرَة
فَارْحَمِ الْاَنْصَارَ وَالْمُهَاجِرَة
‘O Allah! The true reward is that of the hereafter. For this reason, have mercy on the Ansar and the Muhajireen.’”
This narration is also from Bukhari. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab Manaaqib Al-Ansar, Bab Hijratun Nabi, Hadith 390-)
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has explained about this migration [of the Holy Prophetsa]. He has written the account in his own unique style, and therefore I shall read out some of those details. He writes:
“At last not a single Muslim remained in Mecca save a few slave converts, the Prophetsa himself, Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat Alira. The Meccans realised that their prey was about to escape. The chiefs assembled again and decided they should now kill the Prophetsa. By a special divine design, it seems, the date they appointed for killing the Prophetsa was appointed for his escape. When the Meccan party was collecting in front of the Prophet’ssa house with intent to kill, the Prophetsa was moving out in the secrecy of the night in order to migrate.”
On the one hand, the disbelievers were assembling while on the other hand, upon the guidance received from God Almighty, the Holy Prophetsa was preparing to leave.
“The Meccans must have feared anticipation of their foul design by the Prophetsa. They proceeded cautiously and when the Prophetsa himself passed by, they took him for someone else, and withdrew to avoid being noticed.”
Instead of attacking the Holy Prophetsa they began hiding from him out of fear that this stranger may go and inform the Holy Prophetsa of their plans.
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra further states:
“The Prophet’ssa closest friend Hazrat Abu Bakrra had been informed of the Prophet’ssa plan the day before. He duly joined and then both left Mecca, and took shelter in a cave called Thaur, about three or four miles from Mecca over a hill. When the Meccans learnt of the Prophet’ssa escape, they collected and sent a force in pursuit. Led by a tracker, they reached Thaur. Standing at the mouth of the cave in which the Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra sat hiding, the tracker said that Muhammadsa was either in the cave or had ascended to heaven. Hazrat Abu Bakrra heard this and his heart sank. ‘The enemy has nearly got us,’ he whispered. ‘Fear not, God is with us,’ replied the Prophetsa. ‘I fear not for myself,’ went on Hazrat Abu Bakrra, ‘but for you. For, if I die, I am but an ordinary mortal; but if you die, it will mean death to faith and spirit.’ ‘Even so, fear not,’ assured the Prophetsa, ‘We are not two in this cave. There is a third – God.’
“Meccan tyranny was destined to end. Islam was to have the chance to grow. The pursuers were deceived. They ridiculed the tracker’s judgement. It was too open a cave, they said, for anybody to take shelter in, for with snakes and vipers it was none too safe. If they had but bent a little, they could have sighted the two. But they did not, and dismissing the tracker, they returned to Mecca.
“For two days, the Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra waited in the cave. On the third night, according to the plan, two fleet camels were brought to the cave; one for the Prophetsa and the guide, the other for Abu Bakrra and his servant, Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra.
“Before setting out, the Prophetsa looked back at Mecca. Emotions welled up in his heart. Mecca was his birthplace. He had lived there as child and man and had received there the divine call. It was the place where his forefathers had lived and flourished since the time of Ishmael. With these thoughts, he had a last long look at it and then said, ‘Mecca, thou art dearer to me than any other place in the world, but thy people would not let me live here.’ Upon this, Hazrat Abu Bakrra said, ‘The place hath turned out its Prophetsa. It only awaiteth its destruction.’ The Meccans, after the failure of their pursuit, put a prize on their heads and said that whoever captured and restored to the Meccans the Prophetsa or Abu Bakrra dead or alive was to have a reward of a hundred camels. The announcement was made among the tribes around Mecca. Tempted by the reward, Suraqa bin Malikra, a Bedouin chief, started in pursuit of the party and ultimately sighted them on the road to Medina. He saw two mounted camels and, feeling sure they were bearing the Prophetsa and Hazrat Abu Bakrra, spurred on his horse. The horse reared and fell before it had gone very far and Suraqara fell with it. Suraqara later accepted Islam. He gives his own account of the incident.” (Deebacha Tafsir-ul-Quran, Anwarul Ulum, Vol. 20, pp. 222-224)
Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has written the whole incident previously mentioned, as narrated by Suraqara. Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra then further writes:
“The Prophetsa asked Aamir bin Fuhairahra to write Suraqa a guarantee, and he did. As Suraqa got ready to return with it, the Prophetsa received a revelation about the future of events concerning Suraqa and said, ‘Suraqa, how wilt thou feel with the gold bangles of the Chosroes on thy wrists?’ Amazed at the prophecy he asked, ‘Which Chosroes? Chosroes bin Hormizd, the Emperor of Iran?’ The Prophetsa said, ‘Yes’.
Sixteen or seventeen years later, the prophecy was literally fulfilled. Suraqara accepted Islam and went to Medina. The Prophetsa died, and after him, first Hazrat Abu Bakrra, and then Hazrat Umarra became the Khalifas of Islam. The growing influence of Islam made the Iranians jealous and led them to attack the Muslims but, instead of subjugating the Muslims, they were themselves subjugated by them. (It was the Iranians who instigated the war). The capital of Iran fell to the Muslims who captured its treasures, including the gold bangles which the Chosroes wore at state functions. After his conversion, Suraqara used to describe his pursuit of the Prophetsa and his party and to tell of what passed between him and the Prophetsa at the time of the migration, and thus the Muslims were aware of the prophecy of the Holy Prophetsa that ‘Suraqa, how will you feel when the bangles of the Chosroes will be on your wrists?’ When the spoils of the war with Iran were placed before Hazrat Umarra, he saw the gold bangles and remembered what the Prophetsa had told Suraqara. (Umarra saw it all before his own eyes). It was a grand prophecy made at a time of utter helplessness (when the Messengersa of Allah was made to leave his hometown and go to Medina).
“Furthermore, Suraqara and others were in pursuit of him to bring him back to the Meccans, dead or alive, with a reward of 100 camels. It was in that time that the Holy Prophetsa asked Suraqara ‘How wilt thou feel with the gold bangles of the Chosroes on thy wrists?’ What a grand prophecy and clear knowledge of the unseen this was! When Umarra saw the gold bangles, he was shown a glimpse of God Almighty’s power.
“He, therefore, sent for Suraqara and ordered him to put on the gold bangles. Suraqara protested that the wearing of gold by men had been forbidden by Islam. Hazrat Umarra said that this was true (in that men had been forbidden to wear gold), but that the occasion was an exception, (and so it was not forbidden to do so in this particular occasion). The Prophetsa had foreseen Chosroes’ gold bangles on his wrists; therefore, he had to wear them now, even on pain of punishment (because this had fulfilled a prophecy, therefore the rest of the prophecy was also to be fulfilled). Suraqara was objecting out of deference to the Prophet’ssa teaching; otherwise he was as eager as anyone else to provide visible proof of the fulfilment of the great prophecy. He put on the bangles and Muslims saw the grand prophecy fulfilled before their very eyes.” (Deebacha Tafsir-ul-Quran, Anwarul Ulum, Vol. 20, pp. 222-226)
It has been recorded in some books that the Holy Prophetsa did not speak of Suraqa bin Malik being given the bangles of Chosroes at the time of the migration, rather it was at a place called Ji‘rana, right after the Holy Prophetsa was returning from Hunain and Taif. (Bukhari ba-Sharh Al-Karmani, Vol. 14, p. 178, Kitab Bad’ul Khalq, Bab Alaamaat Al-Nubuwwah fi Al-Islam, Hadith 3384, Dar-ul-Kutub Al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2003)
Nevertheless, the more common narration is the one mentioned previously, i.e. at the time of the migration, which has also been stated by Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra.
When Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra migrated to Medina, he fell ill upon arrival. The Holy Prophetsa prayed for him and as a result he regained full health. Hazrat Aishara relates that when the Holy Prophetsa arrived in Medina, having migrated [from Mecca], some of his Companions fell ill, namely Hazrat Abu Bakrra, Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhariahra and Hazrat Bilalra. The Holy Prophetsa granted Hazrat Aishara permission to visit them and enquire of their health. Hazrat Aishara asked Hazrat Abu Bakrra about his health, and in reply he recited the following couplet:
كُلُّ امْرِئٍ مُصَبَّحٌ فِي أَهْلِهِ
وَالْمَوْتُ أَدْنَى مِنْ شِرَاكِ نَعْلِهِ
That is to say, “Whenever a person wakes up in his home, it is indeed a good morning, even if death is closer to him than the laces of his shoe.” In other words, he was in such a state that when he would awake, he would be cognisant of the fact that one day, he was eventually going to die.
Hazrat Aishara then enquired of the health of Aamir bin Fuhairahra and he answered by reciting the following couplet:
اِنِّي وَجَّدْتُ الْمَوتَ قَبْلَ ذَوْقِهِ
اِنَّ الْجَبَانَ حَتْفُهُ مِنْ فَوْقِهِ
That is to say, “I have tasted death even before it befalls me. Surely the death of a coward comes unexpectedly,” which means that a courageous man is ever-ready to die, whereas a coward is unprepared for his death.
Hazrat Aishara then enquired of Hazrat Bilal’sra health. He replied in the following couplet:
يَا لَيْتَ شِعْرِي هَلْ أَبِيتَنَّ لَيْلَةً
بِفَجٍّ وَحَوْلِي إِذْخِرٌ وَّجَلِيلُ
In other words, “How I wish to know if I am to spend a night in the valley of Mecca surrounded by the grasses of Izkhir and Jaleel.” Thereafter, Hazrat Aishara returned to the Holy Prophetsa and related to him the responses of these Companionsra i.e. what Hazrat Abu Bakrra, Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra and Hazrat Bilalra had said. After hearing this the Holy Prophetsa looked to the sky and supplicated:
اَللَّهُمَّ حَبِّبْ إِلَيْنَا الْمَدِينَة كَما حَبَّبْتَ اِلَيْنَا مَكَّةَ أَوْ أَشَدَّ. اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَنَا فِي صَاعِهَا وَمُدِّهَا وَانْقُلْ وَبَاءَهَا اِلَى مَهَيْعَةَ.
“O Allah, make Medina as dear to us as You made Mecca dear to us, or more than that. O Allah, make it conducive to health, and bless us in its sa’ and mudd’ (units of weight and measurement) and remove all its harmful illnesses to Mahay‘ah (i.e. away from us).” (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Vol. 10, pp. 101-102, Hadith 25092, Musnad A’ishara, Dar-ul-Kutub Al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2008)
Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra was martyred during the incident of Bi’r-e-Ma‘unah. When these Companions were killed at Bi’r-e-Ma‘unah and Hazrat Amr bin Umayyah Zamri was held captive, Aamir bin Tufail pointed to a deceased and asked him who that man was. Amr bin Umayyah answered that it was Aamir bin Fuhairahra. Aamir bin Tufail then said “After being killed, I saw Aamir bin Fuhairahra being raised to the heavens to the extent that the sky was between him and the earth, and I can see it even at present. Thereafter, he descended to the earth.”
The Holy Prophetsa was given news of this and informed his Companions of his martyrdom. He stated, “Your Companions have been martyred and they had prayed to their Lord, ‘O Our Lord, inform our brothers of what has happened to us, and that we are pleased with You and You are pleased with us.’” Thus, God Almighty informed them about their deceased brothers. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitabul Maghazi, Bab Ghazwah Rajee’, Hadith 4093)
This is also a narration taken from Bukhari. Just as God Almighty had informed the Holy Prophetsa about them, a non-Muslim was also able to witness this.
There are differing views as to who martyred Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra. According to some narrations, it was Aamir bin Tufail, who was mentioned in the earlier incident. (Al-Isti‘aab Fi Ma’rifati Al-Sahaba, Vol. 2, p. 796, Aamir bin Fuhairahra, Dar-ul-Jeel, Beirut, 1992)
Aamir bin Tufail enquired as to who the deceased was. Hence, he was the one from among the enemies who killed him. On the other hand, according to another source, Abdul Jabbaar bin Salmi was the one who killed him. In any case, Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra was killed in the incident of Bi’r-e-Ma‘unah. (Al-Isti‘aab Fi Ma’rifati Al-Sahaba, Vol. 1, pp. 229-230, Jabbar bin Salmara, Dar-ul-Jeel, Beirut, 1992)
Whilst describing the incident in which Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairahra was martyred, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra writes:
“Thus, Islam did not flourish by the sword, rather it did so through the high moral teachings which penetrated the hearts and caused a tremendous change in the morals of the people. One Companion said that the reason he accepted Islam was that he was a guest among those people who treacherously martyred the 70 Qaris [these were huffaz, who had memorised the entire Holy Quran]. When they launched an attack on the Muslims, some of them had climbed a hilltop whilst others stood ready to combat. As the enemies far outnumbered the Muslims, who were unarmed and defenceless, they overpowered the Muslims, killing them one by one. In the end, only one Companion remained, who had accompanied the Holy Prophetsa in the migration and was the freed-slave of Hazrat Abu Bakrra, whose name was Aamir bin Fuhairahra. It took many of the enemies to bring him down and one of them thrust a spear through his chest. As the spear penetrated, he spontaneously uttered the words:
فُزْتُ وَرَبِّ الْكَعْبَة
‘I swear by the Lord of the Ka‘bah, I have prospered.’
“When one of the assailants, who later accepted Islam heard these words, he was left astonished. He thought to himself, this man is far from his wife, his children and is in such an ordeal where a spear has been thrust through his chest, yet as he was dying the only thing he uttered was ‘I swear by the Lord of the Ka‘bah, I have prospered.’ Is this person not a madman? Hence, this individual asked the others why he has spoken such words. They replied to him, little do you know that these Muslims are indeed mad. When they die in the way of Allah Almighty they believe God is pleased with them and they have obtained their goal. This individual then said that this had such a profound effect on him that he decided to go and see the Muslim headquarters to study their religion for himself. Therefore, when he reached Medina, he accepted Islam. This Companion stated that a man was killed with a spear in this incident, he was far away from his hometown and relatives, yet the words that flowed from his tongue were:
فُزْتُ وَرَبِّ الْكَعْبَة
‘I swear by the Lord of the Ka’bah, I have prospered.’ This had a profound effect on him, that even after the attack and accepting Islam, whenever he would relate the incident, all of a sudden his body would tremble and eyes would flow with tears when he would reach the part where the words
فُزْتُ وَرَبِّ الْكَعْبَة
‘I swear by the Lord of the Ka‘bah, I have prospered’ were uttered.” Hence, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra writes that Islam spread due to its beauties, not by force.” (Sair-e-Ruhani, Anwarul Ulum, Vol. 22, pp. 250-251)
It is also reported that at the time of Hazrat Aamir bin Fuhairah’s martyrdom, he uttered the words:
فُزْتُ وَرَبِّ الْكَعْبَة
And another narration has the words:
Both narrations are found. Moreover, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has mentioned that these words were also uttered by many other Companions as well. Whilst mentioning this, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states:
“From reading history, we find that the Companions would go into the battles with the belief that attaining martyrdom was indeed a source of comfort and joy for them. If they ever experienced any kind of sorrow during the battles, they would consider it a source of solace for themselves. Thus, we find numerous incidents in history wherein they considered being slain in the way of God as a source of comfort. For instance, the Huffaz that were sent by the Holy Prophetsa to one of the Arab tribes for the purpose of propagating the message of Islam. The leader of this delegation, Haram bin Milhan went to Amir bin Tufail, who was the chief of the tribe, to convey the message of Islam while the rest of the Companions remained behind. Initially, Aamir bin Tufail and his accomplices warmly greeted him out of hypocrisy. And so, when he sat down having felt assured from them and began preaching, some evil individual signalled to another and immediately upon receiving this indication, he attacked Haram bin Milhan from behind with a spear and he fell. Whilst falling, he spontaneously uttered the following words:
فُزْتُ وَرَبِّ الْكَعْبَة اللهُ اَكْبَر
meaning, ‘God is great. The Lord of the Ka‘bah is my witness, I have attained my goal.’
“Thereafter, these mischievous people then surrounded the rest of the Companions and launched an attack on them. With regard to this incident, it is mentioned that the person who martyred Aamir bin Fuhairahra, who was the freed slave of Hazrat Abu Bakrra and was also alongside the Holy Prophetsa during the migration, later became a Muslim. His reason for becoming Muslim was that he said when he martyred Aamir bin Fuhairahra, he immediately uttered the words:
that is ‘by God, I have attained my goal.’”
These incidents therefore illustrate the fact that death was a source of joy for the Companions instead of any kind of sorrow.” (Eik Ayat ki Pur Ma’arif Tafsir, Anwarul Ulum, Vol. 18, pp. 612-613)
Thus, these Companions were so fortunate, particularly Aamir bin Fuhairahra who also had the opportunity to serve Hazrat Abu Bakrra. He also had the opportunity to serve the Holy Prophetsa and accompanied him during his migration. He would also provide provisions to the Holy Prophetsa while he was in the cave of Thaur. In those days, the provision was goat milk, and it was Aamir bin Fuhairahra who was assigned with this task. For three days, without fail, he would take the goats there and would provide them its milk. He also had the honour of writing a letter for a pact of peace with Suraqa on the instruction of the Holy Prophetsa. Then, as a result of the prayer he made, the Holy Prophetsa also received the news of martyrdom even though he was far away.
He was an embodiment of loyalty who demonstrated his loyalty at every occasion. May God Almighty continue to go on elevating his status.
(Original Urdu sermon published in Al Fazl International, 1-7 February 2019, pp. 5-9. Translated by The Review of Religions)