Prophet Muhammad’s Emigration (Hijrat)

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SHAFAQNA-The Holy Qur’an says:

“… When he said to his companion: Grieve not, surely Allah is with us. So, Allah sent down His tranquillity upon him and strengthened him with hosts which you did not see, and made lowest the word of those who disbelieved; and the word of Allah, that is the highest; and Allah is Mighty, Wise.” (9:40)

Two months after the death of Hazrat Khadija (SA) in the 10th year of the Prophet’s mission, the Prophet’s (SAW) uncle and supporter, Abutalib, passed away. The year was called “The Year of Grief”. The Quraysh unbelievers persecuted the Prophet relentlessly. In the season of pilgrimage to Mecca, the Prophet (SAW) called various Arab tribes to Islam, but his uncle, Abi Lahab, prevented them from responding.

Two idolatrous tribes, Aus and Khazraj, in Medina had a long-standing feud. When they were tired of hostility between them, they requested help from the Quraysh tribe. The Quraysh proposed certain conditions, which the belligerent tribes did not accept. At that time, a man from Medina, Suvayd ibn Samit, made a pilgrimage to Mecca and visited the Prophet (SAW) who recited Qur’anic verses to him. Apparently, he accepted Islam and left Mecca.

After him, Aishah ibn Rafi came to Mecca accompanied by several young men including Ayas ibn Muaz, to make a treaty with the Quraysh against the Khazraj tribe, but they called in their attempt. The Prophet (SAW) called them to Islam but only Ayas ibn Muaz accepted it.

Another group of Khazraj tribesmen visited the Prophet (SAW) at Aqaba. The Jewish people in Medina had told them about the advent of the Prophet; when they heard the Prophet’s words, they believed he was the promised prophet. Six of them accepted Islam and the people of Medina were informed of it.

In the 12th year of the Prophet’s (SAW) mission, 12 people pledged allegiance to the Prophet; they promised not to steal or lie, and protected the Prophet in Medina as if he were a man from their own tribe. The Prophet (SAW) sent Musab ibn Umayr with them to Medina, a man who had learned the Qur’an by heart to call people to Islam.

Sa’ad ibn Muaz, a celebrity in Medina, was informed of the mission of Umayr. He visited Umayr to prompt him to leave Medina. But Umayr recited Qur’anic verses and called him to Islam; he accepted the call and, in turn, called his kin to Islam and they all accepted. This caused the rapid spread of Islam in Medina. In the days of pilgrimage, Mus’ab went back to Mecca to inform the Prophet (SAW) of the state of affairs in Medina. With him were some 300 to 500 men who had accompanied the Prophet (SAW) in his flight from Mecca to Medina.

After the rites of the pilgrimage were performed, they visited the Prophet (SAW) and his uncle, Ibn Abbas, pledging allegiance to the Prophet, who said that they were of the same blood as he, and deserved respect on an equal footing with him.

The Prophet (SAW) appointed 12 men from among them as chieftains of their tribes. The Second Aqaba Allegiance came to pass in the 13th year of the Prophet’s (SAW) mission. When people were informed of the allegiance of the notables of Aus and Khazraj to the Prophet (SAW), the Qurayshis tightened the grip on Muslims; life became unbearable for Muslims in Mecca.

The Prophet (SAW) ordered their flight from Mecca to Medina at midnight with utmost caution. The flight of Muslims began in the 13th year of the Prophet’s mission. The Prophet (SAW) remained in Mecca, awaiting the command of his Lord.

The first of the Prophet’s (SAW) companions to leave Mecca for Medina was his cousin, Abu Salama. He had come from Ethiopia, and since unbelievers persecuted him, he went to Medina. Remaining with the Prophet (SAW) were Imam Ali (AS), Abubakar and a few others unable to travel on account of being sick and frail. The Qurayshis knew that Medina had become a stronghold of the Prophet (SAW); his companions were ready to fight against the enemies of Islam. They feared the consequences of the Prophet’s flight from Mecca to Medina.

Hence, in the 14th year after Hejira, the unbelievers assembled to find ways and means to cope with the situation. Everyone proposed his idea. Finally, it was decided that they should surround the abode of the Prophet (SAW) overnight and kill him in the morning.

The decision was taken because if the Bani Hashim rose to avenge the Prophet’s (SAW) murder, they would not be able to fight against all the tribes.

The Prophet (SAW) was told of the plot and he ordered Imam Ali (AS) to sleep overnight in his bed. Ali did what he was told. The same night the Prophet (SAW), with Abubakar, went to take shelter from their enemies in Thaur Cave. When night fell, the Prophet’s (SAW) enemies came, peeped through the window, and took Ali for the Prophet.

In the morning the enemies saw Imam Ali (AS) instead of the Prophet (SAW); they asked him to tell them the whereabouts of the Prophet. Since they failed to draw this information from Ali, they began a hunt for the Prophet (SAW) all over town.

The Prophet (SAW) and Abubakar were hidden in Thaur Cave. Abubakar was frightened to death and the Prophet (SAW) consoled him by saying that Allah was with them.

Imam Ali (AS) and Abubakar’s daughter, Asma, supplied them with food and water in the cave, telling them of the state of affairs in Mecca. The Qurayshis announced that they would offer a reward to anyone who could lead them to the whereabouts of the Prophet (SAW).

On the fourth night of being sheltered in the cave, the Prophet (SAW), along with Ali (AS) and a guide, left Mecca for Medina. For more than 13 years, the Prophet (SAW) propagated Islam in Mecca, but only a few were converted to Islam.

The large amount of the reward for the capture of the Prophet (SAW) lured Saraqi ibn Malik to attempt to find the Prophet. The first time he tried, his horse balked and he fell on the ground. He tried again and, again, he was thrown on the ground. He was so horrified that he cried, “O Muhammed! Now I know that you are rightly Allah’s messenger and I will stop chasing you forever!”

The Prophet (SAW) arrived at Quba, a district in Medina where most of the inhabitants were Jews. Those who had helped and accompanied the Prophet in his flight from Mecca to Medina had gathered there to welcome him. Later, people built a mosque in Quba.

In Medina, men and women, young and old, welcomed the Prophet (SAW) and his companions warmly. Although he was seriously ill, burning with the desire to visit the Prophet, Jandah left Mecca but passed away at halfway to Medina. The tribes all insisted that the Prophet (SAW) should honor them by living among them forever.

He lived there, passed away there and was buried in his mosque in Medina.

References:

1. Qur’an

2. The Life of Prophet Muhammed (SAW), by Muhammed Ali Khalili.

3. The Life of Prophet of Islam, by Abbas Shooshtari

4. History of Prophet of Islam, by Dr. Muhammed A’yati

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