Hajj Reflections 5

Welcome to Madinah – Allah’s Special Plan

En Route To Madinah

We are travelling on almost the same road that the Prophet (peace be on him) did, but when he travelled it was with much hardship. During travel, not time is time wasted and we have plenty of time for dhikr.  One of the best types of dhikr is to say salaam upon the Prophet (peace be on him). A companion (may Allah be pleased with him) once asked the Prophet (peace be on him): ‘If I spent half my time saying: ‘salallahu alayhi wasalam’ would that be good?’ The Prophet (peace be on him) replied: ‘That would be much better.’ To which the Companion (may Allah be pleased with him) said: ‘What if I spend all my time saying this?’ The Prophet (peace be on him) said: ‘Then all your concerns will be looked after.’

So never underestimate the power of saying ‘salallahu alayhi wasalam’. By reading it with full understanding, concentration and dedication all your concerns will be looked after.

Madinah Al Munawwarah

The Prophet (peace be on him) said:
‘Belief (imaan) will come back to Madinah like the snake returning to the hole.’
It means it is protected as is Makkah. Ibrahim (peace be on him) made du’a for Makkah and the Prophet (peace be on him) made dua for Madinah.
Why are we in Madinah? We only understand the special position of this small town and its people by studying its background and the changes the Prophet’s (peace be on him) mission created on migrating to Madinah.
The Prophet (peace be on him) continued living in Makkah for 13 years after the revelation began. Every year the Prophet (peace be on him) would look forward to the month of Dhul Hijjah because that was when all the Hajjis and delegations would come to Makkah and he would be longing for some of the delegations to listen to him and accept the divine message. All the Quraysh at that time were slandering and backbiting him, telling people not to listen to him and trying to stop him from spreading the truth. This deeply hurt the Prophet (peace be on him). He didn’t give up even though not many people had accepted Islam at that time.  At most, only a few hundred had.
The Prophet (peace be on him) was inspired to explore other areas for the spread of his message and took his support from the Revelation. However, he was stoned and insulted by groups from Taif. Yet, even though he was humiliated by the people, the angel of the mountains came to him with Jibril (may Allah be pleased with him) with an offer to punish the people (this was never offered to any other prophet before).  However, the Prophet (peace be on him) did not seek revenge and instead made dua that the people from the offspring of Taif come to Islam and in the end they did.
For approximately three years the Prophet (peace be on him) and the companions (may Allah be pleased with them) were under siege with nothing to eat except leaves and even these they had to share amongst themselves as there were limited leaves in the desert. The insides of their mouths were bleeding from the leaves. For three years they were not allowed to buy or sell from anyone. They only had extremely limited help from some people. In 11 Hijri some people came from Madinah, which was called Yathrib at that time. They had a particular fever associated with their town.
During the Hajj season they came and the Prophet (peace be on him) introduced himself and the Message and very quickly they became Muslim. At that time there were five tribes in Yathrib: three Jewish (including Bani Nadir and Bani Quraybah) and two that were Arab known as the Aws and the Khazrij. Historically, the Jewish tribes had no place or roots in Yathrib but they knew from their scripture that a prophet was to come to Yathrib and so that is why they settled there. When they came to Makkah and recognised the signs of the Prophet (peace be on him) some immediately became Muslim. The following year they made a treaty known as the ‘Bayyah Aqabah’. Muslims then started being sent to Madinah.
‘Humar’ was the name of the special fever in Madinah and whoever came to Madinah would get that fever. So the Prophet (peace be on him) made a special dua to Allah Almighty to take that fever away and Allah(swt) took the fever away. The Prophet (peace be on him) also made a special dua for trading in Madinah like the dua that Ibrahim (peace be on him) made for prosperity in Makkah. In the Prophet’s (peace be on him) mind it never occurred to him that a small city like Yathrib (Madinah) would make a big difference. He was focusing on big cities and important people, he never thought that anything would come from Yathrib.
This shows that it is not your plan but Allah Almighty’s plan. Even though Prophet (peace be on him) loved Makkah, he left and went to Madinah. All you need to do is try and do your best and Allah Almighty will open the doors for you and make an opening for you. Just be sincere.
‘You might love something and it’s bad for you and you might hate something and it’s good for you.’
Allah Almighty knows and you do not. Whenever something bad happens that you don’t like, you should think, just rely on Allah Almighty and have full trust in Him. Don’t look at it from a negative angle but look at it from a positive angle instead. Try it and turn it into something good and it will be alright.

Event of Hudaibiyah

The Prophet (peace be on him) had names for things such as his swords, shields and camel. The Prophet (peace be on him) rode a camel called ‘Qaswa’ during Umrah, which was a very fast and reliable camel. Not all camels can be used for travel – only about 1% can be used for travel and the rest are not that useful. On route to Umrah, Qaswa froze three times at a certain place and refused to move. The companions (may Allah be pleased with them) tried calling her and swearing at her to get her to move. The Prophet (peace be on him) stopped them and said: ‘The One who stopped the elephant from going to Makkah has likewise stopped my camel. By Allah if they ask about anything now that doesn’t breach Allah’s command, I’ll accept it from them (i.e. the Quraysh).’ So he was ready to agree to what the people wanted.
The companions (may Allah be pleased with them) were very upset on hearing the concessions that the Prophet (peace be on him) was willing to make. The contract that was written was known as the Treaty of Hudaibiyah. Some of the changes that the Quraysh insisted up and that the Prophet (peace be on him) agreed to included:
1. The Quraish’s refusal to write ‘Prophet Muhammad’. Instead only agreed to write ‘Muhammad, son of Abdullah’
2. A clause by the Quraish that whoever went from Makkah to Madinah should be sent back. As soon as it was written a man came and asked the Prophet (peace be on him) to let him into Madinah because he was being tortured.
3. The Prophet (peace be on him) was in ihram but couldn’t do umrah because of the conditions of the treaty.
Yet the Prophet (peace be on him) stuck to the treaty. The Prophet (peace be on him) also fulfilled the necessary conditions for being released from ihram without doing Umrah. However, the companions (may Allah be pleased with them) were reluctant to obey the Prophet (peace be on him) in this. He consulted his wife (Um Salamah travelled with him on this trip) who advised him to go ahead with what needed to be done and the Companions would follow. So the Prophet (peace be on him) slaughtered an animal and shaved his head in order to be released from the ihram, which the Companions then followed.
Later, the Prophet (peace be on him) said that more people had entered Islam as a result of the Treaty then had in 13-15 years. Hence, you may love something and it’s bad for you and you may hate something and it’s good for you. When facing a test it is better to say ‘It is a test but I trust Allah Almighty and will do my best’ – this gives you strength. If however you complain and don’t trust Allah Almighty the test will be more painful and its’ pain will show on you. Whatever comes from Allah Almighty always look at it from the positive side or else you will suffer from it twice, firstly from the test itself and then from the effect of its pain on you. So be positive and realise that everything is from Allah Almighty and this will relieve your suffering.
During the preparation for the Battle of the Ditch (when Madinah was surrounded) one big rock could not be moved when digging the ditch. The Prophet (peace be on him) just stroked it once and it sparked, he then said ‘Allahu Akbar, I can see the castles of Shaam.’ The Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) were shocked that in the midst of the fear of more than 10,000 enemies approaching to wipe out the muslims in their homes, he remained so positive. In the midst of this, the Prophet (peace be on him) was strong and trusted Allah Almighty. He motivated people and pushed them to have more trust in Allah Almighty. He had been given a vision of the future as if it said ‘you will be successful and don’t worry and Islam will be spread and will come to dominate the whole area’. On the second strike of the stone, he said: ‘I can see the throne of Kisra (Chosroes).’
So the Prophet (peace be on him) was positive and did not base this on false motivation but on reality because he could see the day when Islam would be spread across the globe. The most important time to be positive is during battles and terrifying situations, and it was at times such as this (amongst others) that the Prophet (peace be on him) showed that he was putting even more trust in Allah Almighty.
The Prophet (peace be on him) trusted Allah Almighty and left Makkah saying: ‘You are the most dear city in my heart and if they didn’t push me wallahi (swearing by Allah) I would never leave.’ At that time Madinah was the size of the boundaries of the mosque in Madinah today and therefore very small for a city. Therefore, what is important is:
• not what you think
• but instead to do your best and leave it to Allah Almighty.
It is not about what you think, it is about what is being planned for you. So do your best and trust Allah Almighty. The Prophet (peace be on him) had full trust in Allah Almighty, leaving the Holy City, his people and friends for the sake of Allah Almighty.
Plenty of Companions did the same, including Abdur Rahman bin Awf (may Allah be pleased with him). When he migrated to Madinah, the Ansar brother that he was paired with (as part of the brotherhood/muakhaat program) offered him half of all his possessions including his house and wife after divorce. To which he replied: ‘May Allah bless you and your possessions but just take me to the market (souk).’ He went to the Jewish souk and traded and became the wealthiest person in Madinah. This reflects full trust in Allah Almighty. He did not scream or pull his hair at all the wealth he had left behind in Makkah – instead he had full trust in Allah.

Practical Lessons

When you establish trust in Allah Almighty  in your heart – deep, deep trust – it changes the way you deal with everything around you. You think to yourself: ‘Who is controlling things around me and my life? My managers at work etc? No. It is Allah Almighty, so why should I go to x, y or z? Why not just go to Allah, Who controls all and can change all?’ Trust that Allah Almighty is the only Controller. Use the means but connect your heart with Allah Almighty. Deal with the means but not with the feeling that this will give me success. Instead, leave the outcome to Allah Almighty knowing that it is entirely up to Him.
Do what you can and know that only Allah Almighty can give you success. The Prophet (peace be on him) had full submission and surrender to Allah Almighty as well as trust and patience. Trust and patience, these are needed together. So don’t rush things wanting to eat the fruit without planting the seed.
The Prophet’s (peace be on him) heart was not connected to the dunya. The Prophet (peace be on him) had a very simple house. Once Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) filled his mattress with more stuffing to make it comfortable. He was angry the next day and said: ‘Put it back to what it was before as I missed Qiyam al Layl because I enjoyed the sleep so much.’
Once Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) was upset that the Messenger of God (peace be on him) had an imprint on his body of the reed mat that he slept upon and yet the king of Persia (Khusroes) enjoyed luxury.
This shows that their hearts were connected with Allah Almighty and fully immersed in connection with akhirah. Many of us in Mina feel uncomfortable with the conditions in Mina! It is about the heart, what is in the heart directs the brain. When the heart is full of love of Allah Almighty it directs you to asking less for dunya. Who loves something keeps mentioning it. So if you love money, you keep mentioning it. Likewise if you love Allah Almighty you keep mentioning Allah Almighty. What is in your hearts reflects in your deeds and words. The Prophet’s (peace be on him) heart was full of love of Allah Almighty’s love and he would giving reminders that made everyone love Allah. It was genuine love and was not fake. Remember the story of the tree trunk in the Prophet’s (peace be on him) mosque that he used to lean on giving his reminders and that started crying when he stopped? The Prophet (peace be on him) went and hugged it and stopped it crying. It was known as Ustawa al Hanan or the Compassionate cylinder.
We received from Allah Almighty a nur which was the Prophet (peace be on him) and the Kitaab al Mubeen – a clear book. The more we find out about and love the Prophet (peace be on him) the closer we will be to Allah Almighty. The Prophet(peace be on him) himself said: ‘If you really love Allah, then follow me and Allah will love you.’ The more you love Allah Almighty the more you will also love the Prophet (peace be on him).
We need to increase our knowledge. The more that we do this, the more we can live it, convey it and teach it. Visiting the Prophet’s (peace be in him) mosque should ignite us to learn more about him and love him more.
Q&A:
• The prophets (peace be on them) are alive in their graves. It is a special life called ‘Barzakh’. Allah Almighty prohibited the earth from swallowing up the bodies of the prophets, messengers and martyrs.
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