Sunday, April 8, 2007

The Year of Grief

Description: Death of Abu Talib and Khadijah. And Prophet’s mission to Taif. He also met six of the Jewish tribe of Khazraj from Yahtrib that provide an impetus to the spread of Islam there.

By Ben Al-Hussaini.

Towards the beginning of the tenth year of the mission, reconciliation was concluded between the Quraish and the two families of Hashim and Abdul Muttalib through the mediation of Hisham, Ibn Umar, and Zuber, Ibn Abu Umaiyah. Thus, the alliance against the two families was abolished, and they were able to return to Makkah. During the period the Prophet SAW and his kin people passed in their defensive position, Islam made no progress outside; but in the sacred months, when violence was considered sacrilege, the Prophet SAW used to come out of his temporary prison to preach Islam to the pilgrims.

Death of Abu Talib and Khadijah.

In the tenth year of his Prophethood, his uncle Abu Talib died three months prior to the death of his wife Khadijah. Abu Talib died witout saying the Shahadah as requested by the Prophet but remained to his old belief of 'Abdul Muttalib. Thus the Prophet SAW lost in Abu Talib the kind guardian of his youth who had hitherto protected him against his enemies, and in Khadijah his most encouraging companion. She was ever his angel of hope and consolation. The Prophet SAW, weighed down by the loss of his amiable protector and his beloved wife, without hope of turning the Quraish from idolatry, with a saddened heart, yet full of trust, resolved to exercise his ministry in some of her field.

Prophet Mission to Taif.

The Prophet SAW chose Taif, a town about sixty miles east of Makkah, where he went accompanied by a faithful servant Zaid bin Harithah looking for a supportive atmosphere after the painful events. The tribe of Thakif, who were the inhabitants of Taif, received the Prophet SAW very coldly. However, he stayed there for one month. Though the more considerate and better sort of men treated him with a little respect, the slaves and common people refused to listen to his teachings; they were outrageously indignant at his invitation to abandon the gods they worshipped with such freedom of morals and lightness of heart. At length they rose against him, and bringing him to the wall of the city, obliged him to depart and return to Makkah.

New Converts from Yathrib

The repulse greatly discouraged his followers but the Prophet SAW boldly continued to preach to the public assemblies at the pilgrimage and gained several new converts. Among whom He met were six of the Jewish tribe of Khazraj from Yahtrib [later called Medina]. Yathrib situated more than two hundred miles away north of Makkah, blessed with pleasant oasis, famous even to this day for the excellence of its dates, but had been the scene of almost unceasing tribal strife between the Jews, between the Arabs as well as between the Arabs and Jews. While Makkah prospered, Yathrib lived in wretchedness. The learned rabbis of the Jewish tribes who had often spoken to the pagans of arrival of a Prophet soon.

During one of Call to different tribes in the outskirts of Makkah he overheard a group of men at Aqaba, a place outside Makkah, and he sought to meett with them to which they gladly welcomed. When the men from the tribe of Khazraj from Yathrib heard what Muhammad SAW had to say, they recognized him as the Prophet SAW whom the Jews had described to them, and all six men accepted Islam. They also hoped that Muhammad SAW , through this new religion, could be the man who would unite them with their brother tribe, the Aws, a tribe in Yathrib with whom they shared common ancestry, but distraught with years of war and animosity. They determined to return to Yathrib and spread the religion propagated by Muhammad SAW. As a result the next season of pilgrimage, in the year 621, a delegation came from Yathrib purposely to meet the Prophet SAW.


See: Prophet Muhammad.12.

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