Men of Excellence


Friday Sermon

29 November 2019

Men of Excellence

Screenshot 2019 05 10 at 13.44.34

After reciting the Tashahud, Ta‘awuz and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa stated: 

Hazrat Yazidra bin Thabit was a Badri companion of the Holy Prophetsa. He belonged to a family of Banu Malik bin Najjar from the Khazraj tribe of the Ansar. Hazrat Yazid’sra father was Thabit bin Zahaak, and his mother’s name was Nawaar bint Malik. Hazrat Yazidra was the elder brother of Hazrat Zaid bin Thabitra. (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 3, p. 137, Zaid bin Thabitra, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2008) (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 4, p. 677, Zaid bin Thabitra, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2008)

He married Dubaiyyah bint Thabit. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Sa‘d, Vol. 3, p. 254, Thabit bin Khalid, Dar Ihyaa al-Turath al-Arabi, Beirut, 1996)

It is said that he participated in both the battles of Badr and Uhud. He was martyred in 12 AH in the Battle of Yamama, during the caliphate of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. According to another narration, he was struck by an arrow on the day of Yamama and owing to this injury, he passed away while returning from this battle. (Al-Isti‘ab, Vol. 4, p. 132, Zaid bin Thabit, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2002) (Kitab al-Thiqaat li ibn Habban, Vol. 1, p. 468, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1998)

Hazrat Yazidra bin Thabit narrates that they were sitting in the company of the Holy Prophetsa when they saw a funeral pass by them. The Holy Prophetsa stood up and everyone sitting around the Holy Prophetsa also stood up. They remained standing until the funeral had passed. (Sunan an-Nisa‘i, Kitabul Jana’iz, Bab Al-Amru bil Qiyaami Lil Jana’iz, Hadith 1902)

The details of this incident are recorded in another narration as follows: 

Hazrat Yazidra bin Thabit narrates that he was sitting along with a group of Companionsra in the company of the Holy Prophetsa when a funeral passed by. When the Holy Prophetsa saw this, he stood up immediately and the Companionsra followed suit. They continued to stand until the funeral had passed by them. Hazrat Yazidra states, “By God! I do not think that the Holy Prophetsa stood up due to some discomfort or a lack of space. I also think that this was the funeral of a Jewish man or a Jewish woman and we did not ask the Holy Prophetsa as to the reason why he stood up for it.” (Al-Musannaf li Ibn Abi Shaibah, Vol. 3, p. 732, Kitabul Jana‘iz, Man Qaala Yuqamu lil Jana‘iz idhaa marrat, Hadith 12030, Maktabah Rahmaniyyah, Lahore)

There is another narration by Hazrat Yazidra bin Thabit, which is from Sunan al-Nisai.

Hazrat Yazidra bin Thabit states, “The Holy Prophetsa came outside and saw a new grave.” (In fact, this is a different incident being narrated altogether.) He states, “We went outside with the Holy Prophetsa. Upon seeing a new grave, the Holy Prophetsa asked, ‘What is this?’ The companionsra responded, ‘This is the grave of the slave girl who belonged to such and such tribe.’ The Holy Prophetsa knew who the grave belonged to. The Companionsra informed the Holy Prophetsa that she passed away earlier in the afternoon while he was resting. They said that they did not deem it suitable to wake him up at the time as he was resting. When the Holy Prophetsa heard this, he stood up. The companions formed rows behind the Holy Prophetsa, who then recited takbir four times”, meaning that the Holy Prophetsa stood by her grave, instructed everyone to form rows and offered her funeral prayer. The Holy Prophetsa then stated, “As long as I remain among you, you must inform me when any one of you passes away, because my prayer serves as a mercy for the deceased.” (Sunan al-Nisai, Kitabul Jana’iz, Bab As-Salatu Alaa al-Qabr, Hadith 2022)

Similarly, this narration is also recorded in Muslim, Sunan Abi Daud and Ibn-e-Maja. It is mentioned in Ibn-e-Maja in the following manner:

Hazrat Yazidra bin Thabit, who was older than Zaidra, states that they were in the company of the Holy Prophetsa. When the Holy Prophetsa reached Jannatul Baqee‘, he discovered that a new grave had been dug. The Holy Prophetsa enquired about the grave, to which the Companionsra replied that it was the grave of such and such woman. The narrator says that the Holy Prophetsa recognised her and asked why they did not inform him about her? They replied that he was resting in the afternoon and he was also fasting. Hence, they did not wish to burden him. Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa said, “Do not perform any deed that I am unaware of.” In other words, “I have never ordered you as such. As long as I remain among you, you must inform me of whoever passes away. The reason for this is that my prayer will become a source of mercy for that individual.” Following this, the Holy Prophetsa went to her grave. They formed rows behind the Holy Prophetsa who then recited four takbirat. (Sunan Ibn Majah, Kitabul Jana‘iz, Bab Maa Jaa’a fi as-Salati Alaa al-Qabr, Hadith 1528)

There is another narration from Sahih al-Bukhari, which has been narrated by Hazrat Abu Hurairara and is in relation to a woman of dark complexion and offering her funeral prayer at her grave. In this narration it is mentioned that she used to sweep the floor in Masjid Nabawi [the mosque of the Holy Prophetsa in Medina]. One day, this woman who used to sweep Masjid Nabawi passed away. When the Holy Prophetsa did not see her for several days, he enquired about her, upon which the companionsra informed him that she had passed away. Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa said, “Were you not going to inform me about this? Tell me where this woman’s grave is.” Hence, the Holy Prophetsa visited her grave and led her funeral prayer. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitabus Salah, Bab Kansul Masjid wa Iltiqaadh al-Kharq, Hadith 458) (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitabus Salah, Bab bil Hadhmi lil Masjid, Hadith 460)

The author of Injaz-ul-Haajah, a commentary of Sunan Ibn Majah, writes that this woman had dark complexion. Imam Bayhaqi has mentioned her name to be Umme Mehjan and Ibn Manda has mentioned her name to be Kharqa. She has been counted among the female companions. It is also possible that her name was Kharqa and that Umme Mehjan was her title; i.e. both of these names are correct. (Sharh Ibn Majah, Vol. 4, p. 332, Kitabul Jana’iz, Bab Maa Jaa’a fi as-Salati Alaa al-Qabr, Hadith 1527, Dar an-Noor, Islamabad, 2011)

The name of the next companion to be mentioned is Hazrat Muawwiz bin Amrra bin Jamuh. Hazrat Muawwizra belonged to the Banu Jusham of the Khazraj tribe of the Ansar. (Al-Sirat al-Nabawiyyah li Ibn Hisham, p. 470, Al-Ansar wa man ma’ahum, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2001)

Hazrat Muawwiz’sra father’s name was Amrra bin Jamuh and the name of his mother was Hindra bint Amr. Hazrat Muawwizra bin Amr bin Jamuh participated in the Battle of Badr along with his two brothers, Hazrat Muazra and Hazrat Khalladra. In addition to this, they also participated in the Battle of Uhud. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Sa‘d, Vol. 3, pp. 426-427, Wa Akhuhu Mu’awwidh bin Amr, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2012)

The father of Hazrat Muawwizra is Amrra bin Jamuh, who was prevented from participating in the Battle of Badr by his sons owing to a limp and pain in his foot.

I have already mentioned this incident in a previous sermon, but will mention it briefly again.

On the occasion of the Battle of Uhud, Hazrat Amrra bin Jamuh said to his sons that they did not permit him to go to war on the occasion of Badr. However, he said that this time he would most certainly participate in the battle of Uhud and they would not be able to stop him. His sons explained to him that due to his impediment, he was not even obliged to participate in the battle under such circumstances. However, Hazrat Amrra bin Jamuh did not accept this.

He presented himself before the Holy Prophetsa and said, “O Messengersa of Allah! My sons are preventing me from participating in the battle due to my injured foot. However, I wish to participate in the Jihad alongside you.” The Holy Prophetsa replied, “As for you, Allah the Almighty has exempted you and as such, Jihad is not obligatory upon you.” Nevertheless, seeing his zeal and passion, the Holy Prophetsa granted him permission. Hazrat Amrra bin Jamuh collected his provisions for the war and as he was about to set off, he said, “O Allah! Grant me martyrdom and do not return me to my family unsuccessful.” Subsequently, this desire of his was in fact fulfilled and he was martyred in the Battle of Uhud. Following his martyrdom, his wife, Hazrat Hindra, carried him and her brother, Abdullah bin Amrra on the same horse and buried both of them in the same grave. The Holy Prophetsa stated, “I swear by Him Who holds my life in His hands! I have seen Amr walking in heaven with his limp.” (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 4, pp. 195-196, Amr bin al-Jamuhra, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2008)

The name of the next companion is Hazrat Bishrra bin Bara bin Ma‘rur. Hazrat Bishrra belonged to the Banu Ubaid bin Adi of the Khazraj tribe of the Ansar. According to another narration, he belonged to Banu Salama; these are two different narrations. (Al-Sirat al-Nabawiyyah li Ibn Hisham, p. 471, Al-Ansar wa man ma’ahum, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2001) (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 1, p. 380, Bishr bin al-Baraara, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2008)

Hazrat Bishr’sra father’s name was Hazrat Barara bin Ma‘rur and the name of his mother was Khulaida bint Qais. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Sa‘d, Vol. 3, p. 291, Bishr bin al-Baraara, Dar Ihyaa Al-Turath Al-Arabi, Beirut, 1996)

The father of Hazrat Bishrra, Hazrat Barara bin Ma‘rur was among the twelve appointed chiefs during the Second Bai‘at at Aqabah and was the chief of the tribe of Banu Salama. Hazrat Barara passed away during a journey one month prior to the migration to Medina. When the Holy Prophetsa had migrated to Medina, he visited his grave and recited four takbirat. (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 1, pp. 365-366, Al-Baraa bin Ma‘rurra, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2008)

Hazrat Bishrra participated in the Second Bai‘at at Aqabah along with his father. Furthermore, from among the companions, Hazrat Bishrra bin Bara was a skilled archer. The Holy Prophetsa established a bond of brotherhood between Hazrat Bishrra and Hazrat Waqidra bin Abdullah, who had come from Mecca to Medina. Hazrat Bishrra participated alongside the Holy Prophetsa in the Battle of Badr, Uhud, Khandaq, the treaty of Hudaybiyyah and the Battle of Khaybar. (Al-Isabah Fi Tamyeez Al-Sahabah, Vol. 1, p. 426, Bishr bin al-Baraara Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2005) (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Sa‘d, Vol. 3, p. 291, Bishr bin al-Baraara, Dar Ihyaa Al-Turath Al-Arabi, Beirut, 1996)

Abdur Rahman bin Abdullah narrates that the Holy Prophetsa said, “O Banu Nazala (in some narrations it is written as Banu Salama)! Who is your leader?” They replied, “Jadd bin Qais.” The Holy Prophetsa said, “On what basis do you consider him to be your leader?” They replied, “He is wealthier than us and is affluent. Therefore, we have made him our leader. However, the only fault we find in him is that he is miserly.” They did not like that he was extremely miserly. The Holy Prophetsa said, “Is there a greater shortcoming than miserliness?” In other words, miserliness was a grave flaw and owing to this he could not be their leader. They replied, “O Messengersa of Allah! Do tell us then who is our leader?” The Holy Prophetsa said, “Bishrra bin Bara bin Ma‘rur, is your leader,” i.e. the companion who is being mentioned. According to another narration, it is recorded that the Holy Prophetsa said, “Your leader is Bishrra bin Bara bin Ma‘rur, who has a fair complexion and curly hair.” (Al-Isabah Fi Tamyeez Al-Sahabah, Vol. 1, pp. 426-427, Bishr bin al-Baraara Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2005) (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Sa‘d, Vol. 3, p. 291, Bishr bin al-Baraara, Dar Ihyaa Al-Turath Al-Arabi, Beirut, 1996)

Hazrat Bishr bin Barara married Hazrat Qubaisara bint Saifi and they had a daughter named Aaliya. Hazrat Qubaisara accepted Islam and pledged allegiance to the Holy Prophetsa. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Sa‘d, Vol. 8, p. 435, Qubaisah bint Saifira, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1996)

Hazrat Ibn Abbasra narrates, “Prior to the advent of the Holy Prophetsa, the Jews used to pray for victory against the tribes of Aus and Khazraj by supplicating in their prayers for the prophet [whose advent was foretold in the earlier scriptures].” They used to fight with one another and prayed for victory to be granted to them in the name of the prophet, whose advent had been prophesied, and would supplicate to God Almighty for this. However, when God Almighty raised the Holy Prophetsa from among the Arabs, they rejected his message. This has been the practice of those who reject [prophets] from time immemorial.

Once, Hazrat Muazra bin Jabal, Hazrat Bishr bin Barara and Hazrat Daudra bin Salama said to them, “O Jews! Fear God and accept Islam. Prior to this you would pray for victory through the advent of a prophet by the name of Muhammad and would say that this prophet would appear, whose name would be Muhammad. You would pray for victory through him. Prior to this we were idolaters.” Hazrat Bishrra bin Bara then said, “We were among those who associated partners with God and regarding us you would say that a prophet would appear and the time has come for his advent. You would narrate to us about the signs of his coming. But now that he has appeared, why do you not accept him?”

Salam bin Mishkam – the leader and treasurer of the Jewish tribe of Banu Nazir and also the husband of Zainab bint Harith, the woman who offered poisoned meat to the Holy Prophetsa during the battle of Khaibar – replied, “This prophet has not brought to us anything that we recognise and he is not that prophet whom we described to you.” Despite the fact that all the signs that they used to mention themselves were fulfilled, their answer was that the Holy Prophetsa did not bring what they could recognise and so all the signs had not been fulfilled. Hence they did not accept him. Subsequently God Almighty revealed the following verse:

وَ لَمَّا جَآءَہُمۡ کِتٰبٌ مِّنۡ عِنۡدِ اللّٰہِ مُصَدِّقٌ لِّمَا مَعَہُمۡ ۙ وَ کَانُوۡا مِنۡ قَبۡلُ یَسۡتَفۡتِحُوۡنَ عَلَی الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا ۚۖ فَلَمَّا جَآءَہُمۡ مَّا عَرَفُوۡا کَفَرُوۡا بِہٖ ۫ فَلَعۡنَۃُ اللّٰہِ عَلَی الۡکٰفِرِیۡنَ

‘And when there came to them a Book from Allah, fulfilling that which is with them – and before that they had prayed for victory over the disbelievers – yet when there came to them that which they knew, they rejected it. The curse of Allah be on the disbelievers.’ [Surah al-Baqarah, Ch.2: V.90] (Al-Siratun Nabawiyyah Li Ibn Kathir, p. 381, Ma Nazala min al-Baqarah fi al-Munafiqin wal yahud, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2001) (Al-Siratun Nabawiyyah Li Ibn Kathir, p. 512, Ghazwah Suwaiq, p. 698, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2001) (Al-Raud al-Anf Fi Sharh al-Sirat al-Nabawiyyah Li ibn Hisham, Vol. 2, p. 325, bab Kahinah Quraish, Maktabah ibn Taimiyyah, 1990)

Hazrat Zubairra bin Awwam relates, “During the Battle of Uhud, when the situation of the battle changed dramatically, I was near the Holy Prophetsa. At the time, we were stunned and in a state of shock, when a state of sleep descended upon us. It was such a state that it felt as if we had been overtaken by slumber. There was not a single one of us whose chin was not resting on their chest” i.e. their heads were lowered in this state of sleep and drowsiness. “By God, it felt to me as though I had heard the voice of Muattibra bin Qushair in my sleep and he was saying to me that if it was up to us to decide, we would never die here in this manner.” Hazrat Muattibra bin Qushair was an Ansari Companion who participated in the pledge at Aqabah and the battles of Badr and Uhud. “I committed to memory the words I had heard in my state of slumber. With regard to this occasion, God Almighty revealed the following verse:

ثُمَّ اَنۡزَلَ عَلَیۡکُمۡ مِّنۡۢ بَعۡدِ الۡغَمِّ اَمَنَۃً نُّعَاسًا یَّغۡشٰی طَآئِفَۃً مِّنۡکُمۡ ۙ وَ طَآئِفَۃٌ قَدۡ اَہَمَّتۡہُمۡ اَنۡفُسُہُمۡ یَظُنُّوۡنَ بِاللّٰہِ غَیۡرَ الۡحَقِّ ظَنَّ الۡجَاہِلِیَّۃِ ؕ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ ہَلۡ لَّنَا مِنَ الۡاَمۡرِ مِنۡ شَیۡءٍ ؕ قُلۡ اِنَّ الۡاَمۡرَ کُلَّہٗ لِلّٰہِ

‘Then, after the sorrow, He sent down peace on you – a slumber that overcame a party of you – while the other party was anxious concerning their own selves, thinking wrongly of Allah like unto the thought of ignorance. They said, ‘Is there for us any part in the government of affairs?’ Say, ‘All government belongs to Allah.’’ [Surah Al-e-Imran, Ch.3: V.155]

Hazrat Ka‘bra bin Amr Ansari states, “On the day of the Battle of Uhud, I was with 14 of my fellow tribesmen alongside the Holy Prophetsa. Thereafter, we were overtaken by a state of slumber which granted us peace” i.e. the slumber brought about tranquillity in them. “Although we were still in the midst of a battle, yet this slumber granted us contentment. There was not a single person from among us who one could not hear the sound of snoring from.” At times, one can enter in a state of deep asleep.

He further says, “I witnessed the sword of Bishrra bin Bara bin Ma‘rur (i.e. the companion being mentioned) fall out of his hand, but he was completely unaware of this, all the while, the idolaters were advancing towards us.” (Al-Sirat al-Halabiyyah, Vol. 2, p. 310, Dhikr Maghaziyah, Ghazwah Uhud, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2002) (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 4, p. 432, Mu’tab bin Qashirra, Dar-ul-Fikr, Beirut, 2003)

Nonetheless, it may well be that he perceived the sword to have fallen, because despite their state of slumber, they were used to gripping their weapons firmly or they would feel a sudden jerk if it began to slip out of their hands. The word used in this verse is nu‘as and Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh has explained its meaning in great detail in one of his lectures. He said that analysing all the various meanings of the words “Amantan nu‘asan”, they can be summarised in this verse to mean, “After your sorrow, such a tranquillity was sent down upon you which can be termed as a form of sleep, or such a slumber which bestowed peace”; or that God sent down upon them peace and tranquillity, which had similar effects to that of sleep. Hence, this is the meaning of “Amantan nu‘asan”.

Slumber also means to momentarily lower one’s head when overcome with sleep. However, this meaning of nu‘as does not apply here, rather the meaning in this context is a state that is between one being awake and asleep.

Prior to falling asleep, there is a state where all of one’s nerves and every part of the body experiences a state of calm, and this indeed is a state of complete contentment. If this state is prolonged, then one falls asleep. If one is walking whilst they experience such a state, they will fall over, or at the least, they will feel a sudden jerk and then realise what state they had just experienced. However, if one falls asleep, they do not have voluntary control over their nerves and parts of the body.

Nonetheless, it could be the case that Bishrra bin Bara experienced this state of deep sleep, but it was sleep that was peaceful. Despite the fact that they were in the middle of a battle, he experienced a state of tranquillity which results in one’s muscles to completely relax. For this reason, if we accept this to be the case, it was therefore owing to this state that his hands became slightly relaxed and his sword fell down. Nevertheless, this is such a state that one quickly realises that they are about to fall into deep sleep and owing to a sudden jolt, they wake up. Thus, God Almighty states that He sent down peace upon them, which was similar to that of sleep, but not deep sleep whereby one loses voluntary control over their senses. It granted them peace and tranquillity, but did not render them ineffectual.

In a hadith of Bukhari, Hazrat Abu Talhara narrates, “On the day of Uhud, we were overcome by slumber at the peak of the battle.” This was the slumber that was referred to earlier. Hazrat Abu Talhara further states, “My sword would constantly slip out of my hand, but then I would grip it firmly again.” Thus, from this hadith it shows that it was not such deep sleep whereby the possessions in their hands would drop or that they would fall over whilst walking. Although it was a state of tranquillity, but they had full control over their senses. [He says:] “When the sword would slip, I would grip it firmly.” Thus, it was not the case that slumber suddenly overcame them, rather this was a state that descended over them for a short while.

In Tirmidhi, Abwab-ut-Tafseer, Hazrat Abu Talhara narrates, “During the Battle of Uhud, I looked around and saw that every single person was slouched behind their shields in a state of slumber.” This was owing to them remaining awake or due to tiredness, but the companions were in a difficult condition. God Almighty then caused a state of peace and tranquillity to descend upon them. It was not a state that is usually experienced by soldiers who become tired after a battle, rather Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh has stated that it was as if something suddenly descended from the heavens upon all the Companionsra alongside the Holy Prophetsa, who were engaged in fighting against the enemy, and this state then overtook the Companionsra. At the time, they were in dire need of this source of peace. They needed to refresh and awaken their senses, but there was no time to take any rest. When someone experiences this and is tired to such an extent, this state can be experienced.

Nonetheless, if everyone suddenly falls in a state of slumber such as this, when the battle is at its peak and one is fearful of an attack by the enemy, then this is a miracle and not a coincidence. This can happen to certain people and this did not take place by chance, rather it was a miracle and God Almighty sent down this state of peace upon them at that time. (Ma‘khuz Dars al-Quran biyan farmudah Khalifatul Masih al-Rabi‘, 6 Ramadan al-Mubarak, 17, Feb 1994)

During the Battle of Khaybar, Hazrat Bishrra also ate the poisoned goat meat alongside the Holy Prophetsa, which was given to them as a gift by a Jewish woman. When Hazrat Bishrra swallowed a piece of the meat, he had not yet moved from his place when all of a sudden, his facial complexion changed and became like telasaan – a cloth which was predominately black in colour. The pain was so severe that for an entire year, he was unable to turn over in bed without assistance and eventually he passed away in this painful state. It also stated [in other narrations] that the poison was so deadly that he had not yet moved from his place when after a short while of eating the meat, he passed away.  (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Sa‘d, Vol. 3, p. 291, Dar Ihyaa Al-Turath Al-Arabi, Beirut, 1996)

When Hazrat Bishrra bin Bara passed away, his mother was severely grief stricken. She went to the Holy Prophetsa and said, “O Messengersa of Allah, The death of Bishrra will destroy the Banu Salamah! Those destined to die from among the Banu Salamah will indeed pass away, however will the deceased recognise one another (owing to the impact of this action of the enemy, the Banu Salamah will be greatly affected, however will the deceased recognise one another) and is there any way of sending greetings to Bishr?” The Holy Prophetsa replied, “O Umme Bishr! Indeed, they will recognise one another. I swear by Him, Who holds my life in His Hands, just as birds recognise one another in the trees, in the same manner the inhabitants of paradise will recognise one another.” (Subul al-Hudaa Wa al-Rashaad, Vol. 3, p. 132, Fi Tanbihaat Alaa Ba’d fawa’id Tata’aluq bi Qissati al-Mi’raj, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1993)

This meant that they would be able to recognise one another and that she would be able to send her greetings to him with those who are close to their death.

In another narration it is stated that after hearing this response from the Holy Prophetsa, whenever a person from among the Banu Salamah neared their end, the mother of Hazrat Bishrra would go to that person and say, “O such and such, peace be upon you,” to which they would reply in kind. She would then say, “Please convey my greetings to Bishrra. (Mirqaatul Mafaatih Sharh Mishkaat al-Masaabih, Vol. 4, p. 99, Kitabul Jana‘iz, Bab Ma Yuqalu ‘Inda Man Hadarahu al-Maut, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2003)

Whenever a person from among the Banu Salamah would near their death, she would go to them and ask them to convey her greetings. Earlier, while referring to the statement [that is, Bishr’s death would destroy the Banu Salamah, therefore would the deceased be able to recognise one another?] it may seem as if Hazrat Bishr’sra mother was as if they were the enemy, however this is not the case, rather it was a particular style of expressing her grief. Therefore, as a result of this enormous grief, she asked if the deceased would recognise one another and whether her greetings could be conveyed to Bishrra. The Holy Prophetsa replied in the affirmative and as a result, she would visit every person who was nearing death to convey her greetings to Bishrra in Paradise.

In one narration, the sister of Hazrat Bishrra visited the Holy Prophetsa close to the time of his demise. The Holy Prophetsa said to her, “The morsel that I ate along with your brother at Khayber has severed my insides.” (Al-Sirat al-Halabiyyah, Vol. 3, p. 82, Bab Dhikr Maghaziyah, Ghazwah Khaibar, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2002)

Explaining this incident in detail, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states:

“A Jewish woman asked the Companionsra what part of an animal the Holy Prophetsa preferred to eat. She was told that he preferred the shoulder of lamb or goat. The woman slaughtered a goat and made cutlets on hot stones. Then she mixed with them a deadly poison, especially in pieces cut from the shoulder, believing the Holy Prophetsa would prefer them. The Holy Prophetsa was returning to his tent, having led the evening prayers in congregation. He saw this woman waiting for him near his tent and asked, ‘Is there anything I can do for you?’

“She said, ‘Yes, Abul-Qasim, you can accept a present from me.’ The Holy Prophetsa asked a Companion to take whatever the woman had brought. When the Holy Prophetsa sat down to eat his meal, this present of roasted meat was also laid before him. The Holy Prophetsa took a morsel. A Companion Bashir bin Barara bin Ma‘rur also took a morsel.” Some books of history state the name as Bishr bin Bara, whereas in other places it is recorded as Bashir bin Bara. Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has mentioned the name Bashir bin Bara, i.e. the same Bishr bin Barara.

“The other Companions present at the meal stretched their hands to eat the meat. But the Holy Prophetsa stopped them saying, ‘My hand has informed me that the meat has been poisoned.’”

This did not mean that he had received a revelation, rather this is an expression used by the Arabs, which meant that upon tasting the meat, the Holy Prophetsa thought that it was poisoned. Therefore, this is the meaning of the aforementioned phrase and the Holy Prophetsa used it as an expression. The meaning of “his hand informing him” was that upon tasting the meat, the Holy Prophetsa realised that the meat had been poisoned. The subsequent quote [in regard to the incident] would shed further light on the matter. Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has elaborated on this stating that the Holy Quran has made mention of a wall in the time of Prophet Mosesas. It is stated that “the wall wished for it to fall down”, however, this simply referred to the fact that the condition of the wall was such that it appeared that the wall would collapse at any moment. Thus, even in this incident this statement was in fact an expression.

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra then further says, “Bashirra, i.e. Bishr bin Bara, then said, ‘I swear by God, Who has granted you honour, I too thought the morsel was poisoned. I wished to spit out the morsel, however I thought that if I did so, then perhaps you may dislike my action and it may disturb you while you are eating.’” (He said that he too was hesitant about the food and thought there was something suspicious with it). “‘Seeing you take a morsel, I also took one, but I soon began to wish you had not taken yours as I suspected that it may have been poisoned.’ Soon afterwards Bashirra became ill and, according to some reports, died there in Khayber. According to other reports he died after remaining ill for some time.

“The Holy Prophetsa then took a piece of the meat and gave it to a dog, but it too died shortly after eating the meat. The Holy Prophetsa then sent for the woman and asked her if she had poisoned the meat. The woman asked the Holy Prophetsa how he ever got to know about it. The Prophetsa was holding a piece of the goat in his hand, and said, ‘My hand told me this,’ The woman then realised that the Holy Prophetsa had discovered the truth. The woman admitted what she had done. The Holy Prophetsa asked, ‘What made you commit such a heinous act?’ She replied, ‘My people were at war with you and my relations were killed in this battle, I decided to poison you, believing that if you were an impostor, you would die and we should be safe, but if you were a Prophet, God would save you.’ Hearing this explanation, the Holy Prophetsa forgave the woman. Otherwise she would surely have been given the death penalty. This incident shows that the Holy Prophetsa was ever ready to forgive those who attacked him and his followers, and punished only when punishment was necessary, when it was feared the guilty one would continue to cause mischief and strife.” (Dibacha Tafsir-ul-Quran, Anwarul Ulum, Vol. 20, pp. 327-329)

Some enemies of Islam allege that the Holy Prophetsa passed away due to this poison. This has also been discussed in certain books of history and biographies of the Holy Prophetsa. Certain historians are willing to accept the narrative that the Holy Prophetsa passed away due to this poison, as they wish to declare the Holy Prophetsa as a martyr. However, this is contrary to the facts. The research cell has also sent a report and I will mention that here. It is written that irrespective of what is said in any book of history or biography of the Holy Prophetsa or any hadith, the Holy Prophet’ssa demise was not due to poisoning. If someone asserts this, then either they are ignorant of all the narrations, or they are mistaken.

It should be remembered that the incident of the poisoning took place during the Battle of Khaybar, which occurred at the end of 6 AH or the beginning of 7 AH and the Holy Prophetsa remained alive for approximately four more years. He lived a healthy life just as he did before the incident and even went for battles. There was not even the slightest change in his routine with respect to his worship or other daily activities. To pass away after approximately four years, owing to a fever and a migraine, no rational individual would assert that his death was due to the effects of poisoning.

In actuality, there is a hadith recorded in Bukhari as well as some other books of hadith and owing to not understanding the translation correctly, people have inferred from it that the Holy Prophet’ssa demise was due to the effects of poisoning, whereas this is incorrect. The hadith mentioned in Bukhari is as follows – I will mention the translation:

Hazrat Aishara narrates that during his last days, the Holy Prophetsa would say, “O Aishara! I have always felt the effects of what I ate at Khaybar. Even today, I feel as if my insides are have been greatly affected due to the poison.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitabul Maghazi, Bab Marad an-Nabisa wa Wafatihi, Hadith 5073)

From this hadith, some Muslims – Muslim exegetes and scholars of Hadith – have inferred that the Holy Prophetsa passed away due to the effects of the poison. Some of them then explain that owing to this, the Holy Prophetsa can be deemed as a martyr, whereas this narration does not support this viewpoint. In this narration, the Holy Prophetsa simply expressed a sense of pain he felt. Everyone is aware that an injury or [specific] pain can revert at times owing to certain factors. If one analyses the details regarding the narrations about the Holy Prophetsa eating poisoned meat at the time of Khaybar, it is also written that the Holy Prophetsa put the poisoned meat in his mouth but did not swallow it. Even if he did swallow it, the fact that he lived a healthy life is proof that his death was not as a result of the poison. Indeed, the poison would have had a severe effect on the stomach or intestines and this is a natural consequence of it. Likewise, since the morsel was placed in his mouth, it would have affected the uvula and owing to this he may have occasionally felt pain whilst eating.

All the details regarding this incident can be found in the ahadith. It is also written that the Holy Prophetsa knew that the meat had been poisoned and he stopped his companionsra from eating it. When the Holy Prophetsa called the woman responsible for it and asked her, she said she added poison to see that if the Holy Prophetsa was a true prophet of God, he would be saved. Otherwise, they would be rid of him. The Jews even admit to the fact that the Holy Prophetsa survived. The poison that was used was fatal, yet the Holy Prophetsa survived. In fact, according to some narrations, this woman then accepted Islam. Nevertheless, the Jews themselves admit that the Holy Prophetsa survived and consider this to be a miracle. Therefore, it is utterly false to assert that the Holy Prophetsa passed away due to the effects of the poison. I will continue narrating more accounts in the future, Insha-Allah.

At present, I will speak about two deceased members and Insha-Allah – after the prayers, I will also lead their funeral prayers in absentia. The first funeral is of Respected Naseer Ahmad Sahib, son of Respected Ali Muhammad Sahib of Rajanpur. He passed away on 21 November 2019 at the age of 63:

اِنَّا لِلّٰہِ وَاِنَّا اِلَیْہِ رَاجِعُوْنَ

“Verily to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return.”

Ahmadiyyat entered the family of the deceased through his paternal great grandfather, Muhammad Din Sahib. He belonged to the village of Malsian, in Zira, district of Firozpur. He accepted Ahmadiyyat by sending a letter pledging allegiance in 1907 along with his brother, Respected Ilahi Baksh Sahib. He then had the opportunity to pledge allegiance at the hands of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Ira during the Qadian Jalsa in 1908.

The late Naseer Ahmad Sahib had the opportunity in Rajanpur to serve as the naib amir of the district, as well as, zaim ansarullah and sadr Jamaat. He was regular in offering the five daily prayers in congregation and would make arrangements for it. He lived in a join-family system and would constantly remind all of his brothers, nieces and nephews for the prayers. At Fajr prayers, he would go around the entire manor house. They lived together in a large manor house which had separate dwellings.

He would wake everyone up for the Fajr prayers. He would not only recite the Holy Quran himself, but also encouraged all of his relatives, including children and asked them if they had done so. If they were negligent in this matter, he would encourage them about it. He would read the books of the Promised Messiahas and encourage his children and other relatives including his nieces and nephews. He would listen to the Friday sermons on MTA regularly and it was his habit to ensure that all of the residents of his household had also listened to the Sermon.

Despite facing severe opposition, he never let any opportunity pass by to perform tabligh [spread the message]. If his family members advised him to err on the side of caution, he would reply by saying, “How can I stand before God Almighty if I do not spread the message of the one appointed by Him to others.” The deceased was a musi [member of the institution of Al-Wasiyyat].

Apart from his wife, he leaves behind one daughter and three sons. One of his sons, Khalid Ahmad Sahib is currently serving as a missionary in Mali (West Africa) and owing to his duties, he was unable to attend the funeral.

May God Almighty elevate the status of the deceased, grant him His forgiveness and enable his children and future progeny to continue his virtuous deeds.

The second funeral is of Respected Ataul Kareem Mubashar Sahib, son of Mian Allah Ditta Sahib, who was originally from Kirtu, district of Sheikhupura, but was currently residing in Canada. He passed away on 13 November at the age of 75:

اِنَّا لِلّٰہِ وَاِنَّا اِلَیْہِ رَاجِعُوْنَ

“Verily to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return.”

Ahmadiyyat entered the family of the deceased through his father, Respected Mian Allah Ditta Sahib, who performed Bai‘at at the hands of Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra in 1934 and after performing Bai‘at, he spent his entire as a Waqf [life-devotee]. He would be engaged in the works of Tabligh and many families accepted Ahmadiyyat through him and he spent his entire life with this spirit of dedication. Aside from this he served the Jamaat in many other capacities whilst he was in Lahore, Pakistan. In 2007, he moved to Canada and had the opportunity to serve as Secretary Ishaat for his Jamaat.

Owing to an ailment of the lungs, he constantly used oxygen [through a machine]. Until his health permitted him, he would regularly attend the mosque in order to offer the prayers on his wheelchair. He fought his illness courageously and never complained of anything. He had a bond of loyalty and sincerity with the Nizaam [system of the Jamaat] and the institution of Khilafat and exhibited a lot of love for them. He was very intelligent and wise; he possessed a pure heart and was honest. Every member of his family has spoken about the deep bond they had with him. He was sincere with everyone and would provide ease to others. He never complained to anyone and had a loving and friendly relationship with everyone.

The deceased was a musi. Aside from his wife, he is survived by two sons and two daughters. One of his sons, Ataul Mannan Tahir Sahib is a missionary who is currently serving as naib nazir in the office of Sadr Sadr Anjuman Ahmadiyya. One of the deceased’s grandsons, Jazib Ahmad is studying in Jamia Ahmadiyya in Canada. The deceased was the elder brother of Abdul Kareem Qudsi Sahib, who is a poet of the Jamaat.

May God Almighty shower His mercy and forgiveness on the deceased and elevate his status. May He enable his children and future progeny to continue his virtuous endeavours.

(Originally published in Al Fazl International, 20 December 2019, pp. 5-9. Translated by The Review of Religions.)

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