Wednesday, August 20, 2014

HAZRAT MALIK AL-ASHTAR (R.A.)

Malik bin al-Harith al-Nakha’i (r.a.) was one of the most pious and loyal companions of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) and the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (a.s.). Al-Ashtar is a title given to him because he was struck on his eyelid in the Battle of Yarmouk. His date of birth is not available but it is reported that he was 10 years older than Imam Ali (a.s.) and 20 years younger than the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). He was from Yemen.
He is recognized for his piety, humbleness as well as his fierce and steadfast defense for Islam. He was the fiercest warrior of his time and was the right hand of the Commander of the Faithful (a.s.).
The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) sent Khalid bin Waleed to Yemen to invite people toward Islam, but his approach was such that the people started pelting stones at him. Then Imam Ali (a.s.) was sent. When he along with some Muslims reached Yemen, the Yemenis again threw stones, but Imam Ali advised his companions to be patient. When Imam Ali (a.s.) finished his invitation of Islam to them they were so impressed by his personality that the tribes of Kinda, Banu Nakha, Hamadan, and Thaftan converted to Islam. The prominent personalities like Hujr bin Adi, Kumail bin Ziyad and Malik were among them.
Encounter with Waleed bin Uqba, the Governor of Kufa:
Waleed bin Uqba was the half brother of the third caliph Usman bin Affan. He used to consume alcohol openly and was expelled from the country by the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). Surah al-Hujarat Ayah 6 exposes his character stating him to be an evil man: “Believers, if one who publicly commits sins brings you any news, ascertain its truthfulness carefully, lest you harm people through ignorance and then regret what you have done.”
One day, he entered the mosque drunk and led the Morning Prayer four rakat instead of two rakat and at the end asked the Muslims if he should continue! Malik along with Kumail bin Ziyad and nine other Muslims complained to him. Instead of accepting his mistake he expelled them to Sham (Syria). Muawiya said: “How dare you speak about the governor and cause disunity. Quran says ‘Obey Allah, obey the prophet, and obey the leaders among you!” They were expelled from Syria as well. They were returning to Madinah and were stopped on the way at Rabza, where Abu Dharr Ghifari was in a very bad health after being banished by the third caliph. Malik and nine other Muslims returned to Madinah and complained about the behavior of Waleed and Muawiya but nothing was done.
Soon the caliph was assassinated by the Muslims. Now the multitude of Muslims requested the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (a.s.) to accept the caliphate but the Imam refused. Malik was among them. When the pressure increased, then Imam Ali (a.s.) accepted their demand. On assuming the caliphate, he immediately removed every unjust governor.
Battle of Jamal:  Marwan played a vital role in arranging a large army along with Ummul Momineen Aisha, Talha and Zubair. They headed towards Basra. Imam Ali (a.s.) sent Malik to enlist support from Kufans and by his powerful speech enlisted support of over 18,000 people. When they joined the forces of Imam Ali (a.s.), he gave the command of the right wing to Malik and left wing to Ammar bin Yasser and the army’s standard to his son Muhammad bin Hanafiyah. As usual, Imam Ali (a.s.) ordered his men not to attack first. He asked for a volunteer to take the Glorious Qur’an to the rebels, a brave man came forward. When the man went to the rebels he was martyred. The Imam raised his hands and prayed. The war began and Malik’s men fought bravely. Imam Ali (a.s.) asked Malik to cut the feet of Hazrat Aisha’s camel and asked Muhammad bin Abi Bakr to support his sister when the camel falls. Thus the mission was accomplished and Hazrat Aisha was respectfully sent back to Madinah.
Battle of Siffin: Imam Ali (a.s.) removed all corrupt governors replacing them with honest, truthful, trustworthy, God-conscious ones. He appointed Malik as the governor of areas near the border of Shaam (Syria). The infamous and power-hungry Muawiya, who sought to eliminate the caliphate of Imam Ali (a.s.) and fearful of his removal, formed an army to defend his power. Imam Ali (a.s.) exchanged letters with him but he openly disobeyed. Imam Ali (a.s.) sent an army towards Sham. The two armies met at Kirkeesiya. Malik tried to persuade Muawiya to avoid bloodshed. Muwiya's army made a surprise attack at night but was suppressed. The real battle took place at Siffin. Muawiyah’s army captured the River Euphrates and denied water to Imam Ali (a.s.)’s army. Imam Ali (a.s.) sent Malik to recapture the river but it was the nobility of Imam Ali (a.s.) who allowed the enemy to take water!
Malik was a brave and fearless a warrior. During the war, Malik said that he had killed the same number as Imam Ali (a.s.). The Imam replied that before killing he was seeing if there was any believer in the next seven generations of the victim! At the height of the war, Muawiya tricked Imam Ali (a.s.)’s army and asked his men to raise Qur’an on their spears. Imam Ali (a.s.) tried to convince his men about the trick but about 22,000 Kharijites refused to obey him.  Malik was only two rows away from Muawiya when the Imam recalled him. This was the discipline that Malik stopped the fight and returned to the Imam.
Imam Ali (a.s.)’s letter to Malik:
Imam Ali (a.s.) had sent a directive to Mailk regarding the governance. The former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi used to give this letter to any new cabinet minister. In the year 1997, the Secretary General of the United Nations, Kofi Annan had conducted a survey to search for the best document on Justice and found this letter to be the best document ever written.
Martyrdom of Malik by Mua’wiya: Muhammad bin Abi Bakr was the governor of Egypt. Muawiya’s companion Amr bin As wanted to become the governor of Egypt. He rallied 6,000 men and advanced toward Egypt. On hearing this news from Muhammad, Imam Ali (a.s.) dispatched Malik to help him. When Muawiya heard about it, he planned to eliminate Malik by poison. He sent a delegation to the owner of a service station at Qilzim City where travelers used to stop for rest. The owner was promised life time tax free facility. Consequently, Malik was poisoned in honey and died instantly. On hearing the news of Malik’s martyrdom, he was very sad and said: “Women would become baron to give birth to a man like Malik. Malik was to me like I was to Rasul Allah!” When his plan was successful, Muawiya was jubilant and said: “Ali ibn Abi Talib had two hands, I cut off one of them in Siffin; it was Ammar ibn Yassir. Today, I have cut off the other hand, it is Malik.”
Malik had two sons; Ishaq and Ibrahim. Ishaq fought in Karbala with Imam Hussayn (a.s.) and Ibrahim helped Mukhtar avenge the martyrs of Karbala.
Sources used:
Malik al-Ashtar                                                                                                       by Kamal al-Sayyid

WIKIPEDIA

Sunday, August 17, 2014

KHWAJA MOIN UDDIN CHISHTY (R.A.)

He was born in Sistan, Iran in the year 1142 A.D. and died in the year 1236 A.D. and was buried at Ajmer, India. His paternal genealogy relates to the King of Martyrs, Imam Hussayn (a.s.) and maternal genealogy is linked to one of the Chiefs of the youths of Paradise Imam Hasan (a.s.). Thus he is the direct descendant of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.), a very rare distinction!
He lost both his parents at an early age. Even in childhood, he was a pious boy always ready to share things with his friends and help the needy.
Throughout his life, he exhibited the noble traits of character so peculiar to the House of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). It was the truth, peace, love and non-violence. Islam spread in India by the great moral power, glorious and appealing character, with love and dedication to mankind, without any worldly resources of wealth, power, force and material means. He was a great scholar. He interpreted the true Islamic message of love for humanity and also love for the Al-Mighty. He was the great mystic of his time. It is reported that he was directed in a dream by the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) to proceed to India and spread Islam there. He laid the foundation of Chishty order of Sufis in India and inspired the millions of souls to be his followers around the world.
His titles were; Sultan-ul-Hind (King of India), Khwaja Gharib Nawaz (Caretaker of the poor), and Ajmeri Khwaja.
His disciples were: Qutubuddin Bakhtiar Kaki, Fariduddin Ganjshakar, and Nizamuddin Auliya. He himself was the disciple of Usman Harooni. He had visited the seminaries of Samarkhand and Bukhara and all other great centers of Muslim culture. He along with his Murshid, Usman Harooni, travelled in the Middle East and also visited Makkah and Madinah.
It is reported that the Mughal Emperor Akbar went on foot to Ajmer to meet him!
He had authored several books including Anis al-Arwah and Dalil al-Arifin. The books deal with the code of Islamic living.
Poem Favoring the King of the Martyrs: His immortal poem paying rich tributes to the King of Martyrs, Imam Hussayn (a.s.) reads as follows:
                Shah ast Hussayn Badshah ast Hussayn (Ruler is Hussayn, Emperor is Hussayn)
                Din ast Hussayn Dinpanah ast Hussayn (Faith is Hussayn, guardian of faith is Hussayn)
                Sar dad na dad dast dar daste Yazeed (Offered his head not the hand to Yazeed)
                Haqqa ke binai la ilah ast Hussayn (Indeed, Hussayn is the foundation of the Shahadah)
The spiritual Lineage of all Sufis terminates at the Commander of the Faithful Imam Ali (a.s.)
Sayings of Khwaja Moin uddin Chishty:
The test of a true devotee’s mind is that it is always strictly obedient to the will of God, and is constantly afraid of behaving in a manner which is apt to displease Him resulting in the withdrawal of His Grace.
He is a hardened sinner who commits sin and yet simultaneously entertains the belief that he is one of the God’s chosen few.
Patience is tested through resignation to sorrow, sufferings and disaster without murmur disclosing one’s pains to others.
Namaz (Islamic prayer) is the ladder leading to the Proximity of God All-Mighty.
Prosperity departs from the home of one who tells a lie on oath and is soon ruined.
Keep handy your equipment for the last journey and think of death as hovering over your head at all times.
Offer your repentance quickly before death arrives and hurry up to perform Namaz before its final hour passes.
Perfection of faith is evidenced by three things; Fear, Hope, and Love.
True friendship or love (of God) lies in maintaining His constant recollection in heart and not in expression by speech.
Sources used:
Khwaja Moin Uddin Chishty.com

WIKIPEDIA

Friday, August 15, 2014

MA'AD - HEREAFTER

The root of Ma’ad is Aud which means to return or come back. As on the Day of Resurrection, the souls will be made to return to their bodies. Hereafter or Qiamat is one of the Roots of Islam and to have faith in that is essential or obligatory. It is that everyone will, after his death, become alive again and would be rewarded or punished according to ones belief and deeds. Ma’ad encompasses four stages; death, grave, Barzakh, Resurrection and ends with either Paradise or Hell. Man in this world is like a baby in the womb who has no idea about the outside world. The only sources of comprehension of Ma’ad are the Glorious Qur’an, the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s) and his Ahlul Bayt (a.s.).
Death- The First Station: The breaking of the relation between the body and the soul is called death. The relation between body and soul may be explained as a lamp in the dark house of the body which shows through eyes, ears and other organ. When death occurs, the lamp is removed and the body is left in darkness. It is just to explain the relationship, but in reality the soul neither enters nor leaves the body. Allah is the only bestower of life and death as mentioned in Surah Zumar Ayah 49 which says: “Allah gives life and only Allah causes death.”
In the Glorious Qur’an, Surah Nisa Ayah 97 says: “Angels collect the souls.” Surah Sajdah Ayah 11: “The angel of death takes away the souls.” In reality it is Allah who causes death.
At the time of death, the angels as well as Shaitan come to the dying person. Shaitan tries even at the last moment to mislead. A man’s feelings at the time of death will be the same as he had it during his life time and will be the same on the Day of Resurrection.
People who did good deeds will die peacefully as stated in Surah Nahl Ayah 32: “Those whom angels cause to die in good state, saying: “Peace be on you: enter the Garden for what you did.”
The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s) said: “Even in Muslims there are three groups of people whose souls will be taken away in a harsh way; a tyrant ruler, one who usurps orphan’s property, and the one who gives false testimony.”
Love for this world is an attribute of infidels and a source of sins. In Usool al-Kafi, the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s) said: “The root of all evils is the love for this world.”
The condition of a man regarding death should be like a man in the service of a king for a few days. In the meanwhile he gets a word from the king that you will be, at an unexpected time, be made to stand in front of the king so that you be rewarded and honored by the king for good service and loyalty.
Similarly, a faithful person, though he feels happy at his death, which is the door to the place of rewards and gifts, also like and wishes that the said hour may be delayed so that he may perform more worship.
It is mentioned in many traditions that the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) and the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (a.s.) arrive at the head of the dying person. It is stated in some other traditions that the Pure Panjetan (a.s.) come by the side of the dying person. According to the famous tradition by Haris-e-Hamadani, Imam Ali (a.s.) said: “Everyone sees me on his or her death bed and will do so in future also, be he a believer or non-believer.”
After death, the soul remains near the body, it watches who is washing and shrouding the body, it listens to the talk of the people. After the burial, the soul is reconnected to the body. The first good news given to the faithful in the grave is: “The Most Merciful Allah has forgiven you and all those who participated in your burial.” According to the Shia faith, the deceased person has to face the questioning in the grave by the angels; Munkir and Nakir. And also believe that the grave squeezes the body. The questioning is about God, the Prophet, and the Imams. If the deceased gives correct answers, a door is opened near the head and his grave is widened. If he fails to give correct answers, a door of Hell is opened near the head. It is reported that questions may be put for certain deeds also. Deeds are in the form of companions remain in the grave with the dead till the Day of Resurrection.
Sa’ad bin Mua’az Ansari, was a pious companion of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). When he died, rows of angels attended his funeral; the Prophet himself lowered his body in the grave. Seeing all this, his mother congratulated Sa’ad for the Paradise. The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) asked her from where she knew that his son has reached Paradise. He said that Sa’ad is undergoing squeeze of the grave. He gave the reason for this squeeze was that his behavior with his wife was not good! Other reasons for grave squeeze are; back-biting, not purifying one after urinating, making false allegations etc.
Sources used:
Bihar-ul-Anwar                                                                                             by Allama Majlisi (r.a.)

The Book Hereafter                                                                                      by Ayatullah DasteGhaib (r.a.)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

HAZRAT JABIR IBNE ABDULLAH ANSARI (R.A.)

Hazrat Jabir was born in Madinah, about 15 years before the Migration (Hijrat) of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.).He was the son of Abdullah, who belonged to the tribe of Khizrij. Hazrat Jabir accepted Islam when he was a young boy.
It is reported that the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) told him: “O’ Jabir! You will have a long life, and although you will go blind, but you will meet my 5th in the line of my descendants, whose name will be my name, who will walk like me and who will be the 5th Imam. Convey my greetings to him”
In the Battle of Uhad, he was not allowed by his father to take part in the jihad. Hazrat Jabir had seven sisters and his father wanted him to take care of them. Hence, he was there only to take care of the thirsty Muslims. His father, Abdullah was martyred in Uhad at the age of about 100 years. However, he participated in 19 Ghazawa’t (Battles in which the Noble Prophet ‘s.a.w.a.s’ was present).
Hazrat Jabir was a very close companion of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.), the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (a.s.) and the Ahlul Bayt (a.s.). He fought under the command of Imam Ali (a.s.) in the Battles of Jamal, Siffin, and Nahrawan. He could not participate in the Jihad of Karbala as he had become very old and became blind. On 20th of Safar, 61 A.H. he was the first pilgrim to the shrine of the King of Martyrs, Imam Hussayn (a.s.) and had recited a Ziarat known as “Ziarat-e-Arba’een”.
In Madinah, he waited to meet the 5th Imam, and each morning he would come out of his house and sit be the road side and wait for the sound of the foot steps to recognize the 5th Imam. On one such day, while he was waiting, he heard someone walking towards him, the sound of the footsteps reminded him the way the Noble Prophet used to walk. He stood up, stopped the man and asked his name. He replied, “Muhammad”, Hazrat Jabir asked: “Whose son?” He replied: “Ali ibn al-Hussayn”. Hazrat Jabir immediately recognized the man he was talking to, he was the 5th Imam, the Infallible Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (a.s.). He immediately kissed the Imam (a.s.)’s hands and conveyed the message of his Noble Grandfather (s.a.w.a.s.).
Narrator of Hadees-e-Kissa: Hazrat Jabir being one of the most pious, noble and close companion of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). He had the unique privilege of narrating the famous “Hadees-e-Kissa” by the Lady of Paradise, Chief of the women of the world, Hazrat Fatima Zahra (s.a.). The Hadees-e-Kissa identifies the Ahlul Bayt (a.s.) as mentioned in the Golden Ayah of Purity; Surah al-Ahza’b Ayah 33: “O’ People of the House, Allah wants to keep away all kinds of uncleanness from you and to purify you thoroughly.”
Hazrat Jabir would walk through the streets of Madinah and say: “Ali is the best of all mankind. Whoever denies that is an unbeliever. O people of Ansar, educate your children to love Ali”. It is reported that the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) asked Allah twenty five times to forgive Jabir. Once, someone asked Jabir to say something about Imam Ali (a.s.), He replied: “He is the best of all creatures, no one hates but a hypocrite and no one doubts in him except an infidel.”
Modern Miracle: In the year 1932, the King Faisal of Iraq dreamt that Hazaifa-e-Yamani, one of the close companion and staunch supporter of the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (a.s.) addressed to the king, saying: “O’ King! Remove Jabir ibne Abdullah Ansari and me from the banks of River Tigris and bury at some safe place because my grave is already filled with water and Jabir’s grave is getting water slowly. On 20th Zil-Hijjah 1351 A.H., a large number of Muslim and non-Muslim crowd, along with the King, Grand Mufti, the Prime Minister, and Prince Farooq of Egypt, evidenced the opening of the graves of the two trusted companions of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). Both the holy bodies were fresh and intact while their open eyes were spreading such divine light that the spectator’s eyes were dazzled! Their coffins were also intact and looked as if they were alive. The two bodies were taken away and re-buried near the grave of Salman al-Farsi, about 30 miles from Baghdad, Iraq. A German Physiologist was so impressed by the condition of the bodies, which were buried more than one thousand years,  he came to the Grand Mufti and said: “What more evidence can there be in support of Islam. I embraced Islam, so teach me about it.” He was followed by many Christians and Jews who also became Muslim!            
 (Refer Daily Jung of 7th June 1970)
He had a long life and was martyred by one of the Tyrants of the time, Hajjaj bin Yousuf, who poisoned him for the enormous love for the Ahlul Bayt (a.s.) of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). He was 94 at the time of his Martyrdom.
Sources used:
The book : Al-Amali                                                                                          by Shaikh Mufid (a.r.)
Brief Commentary of Hadees-e-Kissa                                                                by Jerrmein Shahba

WIKIPEDIA, TEBYAN.NET

Sunday, August 10, 2014

HAZRAT HAMZA BIN ABDUL MUTALLIB (A.S.)

Hazrat Hamza (a.s.) was the paternal uncle of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) hence belonged to the Bani Hashim clan. It is incorrect to treat him as a companion. His “Kuniya” were Abu Umara and Abu Ya’ala. He was called the “Strongest Man of Quraysh” as he was well-built, fond of wrestling, archery, and swordsmanship. He liked hunting.
Upon return from a hunting trip, he was told that Abu Jahal had attacked and insulted the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). Filled with rage, Hazrat Hamza (a.s.) rushed to Abu Jahal and struck him with a violent blow on his head with his bow. He said: “Will you insult him, when I am of his religion and say what he says? Hit me back if you can.” Because of his blow on Abu Jahal’s head, his head broke open. Some of Abu Jahal’s relatives approached to help him, but he told them: “Leave Abu Umara (Hazrat Hamza) alone, for by God, I insulted his nephew deeply.” After that incident Hazrat Hamza (a.s.) entered the house of Al-Arqam and declared Islam. Hazrat Hamza (a.s.)’s Islam was complete and he followed the Apostle’s commands. When he became a Muslim, the Quraysh recognized that the Apostle had become strong, and had found a protector in Hazrat Hamza (a.s.).
According to Muhammad ibn Saad translated by Bewley A. (The companions of Badr, Ta Ha Publishers, London), one day Hazrat Hamza (a.s.) asked the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) to show him the Angle Jibra’eel in his true form. The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) told him that he would not be able to see him. Upon his insistence, the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) asked him to sit down. It is reported that Archangel Jibra’eel descended in front of them and Hazrat Hamza (a.s.) saw that Archangel Jibra’eel’s feet were like emeralds and he fell unconscious.
After the Migration to Madinah, the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) made him the brother in Islam of Zayd bin Haritha.
As a result of the Muslim’s Migration to Madinah, the Quraysh attacked the remaining Muslims in Makkah, destroyed their properties. To retaliate for this destruction, the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) sent his uncle Hazrat Hamza with a small army of thirty mujahedeen to the coast in Juhayna to intercept the Quraysh’s merchant caravan returning from Syria. However, Majdi ibn Amt al-Juhani intervened.
Battle of Badr: Abu Jahal marched towards Madinah with 950 well-armed men. The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) along with 313 Mujahedeen came out to face the enemy. The Muslims blocked the wells at Badr. Alaswad ibn Abdal asad al-Makhzumi was a quarrel-some, ill-natured man. He said: “I swear to God that I will drink from their Cistern or destroy it or die before reaching it.” Hazrat Hamza came forward against him, and when the two met, Hazrat Hamza attacked him and he fell on the ground and lay there. Then he crawled to the well and threw himself into it, but Hazrat Hamza followed him and killed him in the well. The polytheists called for single combat. Hazrat Hamza faced Utba ibn Rabi’iah and killed him, Imam Ali (a.s.) faced Waleed bin Utba and killed him. Hazrat Hamza helped Imam Ali kill Utba’s brother Shayba, who was facing Ubaidullah. Allah granted victory to the Muslims.
Battle of Uhad:  When the news of defeat reached Makkah, the Polythiests started to avenge this defeat. Specially, Hinda, the wife of Abu Sufiyan and mother of Muawiya. She gave some gold to a slave called Wahshy to kill the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.), or Imam Ali (a.s.) or Hazrat Hamza (a.s.). She promised to give more reward after the mission was accomplished. Before the commencement of hostilities, the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) had stationed a band of archers at the foot of al- Ainain Mountain to protect the back side of the Muslim army, and ordered them not to leave their position at all. But when the polytheists were losing the battle and running away, the band of archers forgot their clear orders and left the position to share the booty. Khalid ibn Waleed, a commander of the enemy, attacked from that loop hole and caused damages. Wahshy was waiting behind a tree with a spear and threw it in the abdomen of Hazrat Hamza who was instantly martyred. Hinda came and ripped open his abdomen cut out the lever and chewed it. She also desecrated his body by cutting his nose and ears to make a neck-lace. Abu Sufiyan also came to desecrate the body.
When the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) saw his uncle’s desecrated body, he cried a lot. He took out his dress and covered the body and said: “Uncle, the Lion of Allah, the Lion of His Apostle, doer of good deeds, remover of worries, defender of Allah’s Apostle, and saver of his face.”
Hazrat Hamza (a.s.)’s day of martyrdom is 15 Shawwal 2 A.H. Please see my article “Asma Binte Umais (s.a.)
Sources used:
Hamza bin Abdul Muttalib                                                                             by Kamal al-Sayyid
A Restatement of the history of Islam and Muslims                                         by Sayyid Ali Asghar Razwy

WIKIPEDIA and ezsoftech.com/Islamic/hamza.asp

Thursday, August 7, 2014

HAZRAT UWAIS AL-QARANI (R.A.), A UNIQUE COMPANION OF THE NOBLE PROPHET (S.A.W.A.S.)

Hazrat Uwais al-Qarani was born in Qarn, Yemen in the year 594 A.D. His father, Abdullah, was a strong Muslim and died when he was still young. Normally, Muslims who were either have met or even seen the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.), were considered a “Companion”. Hazrat Uwais had embraced Islam but did not see or met him but loved the Prophet. He had an old blind mother who was looked after by Hazrat Uwais. Once, she gave him the permission to go to Madinah to meet the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) and quickly return back to her. It is reported that he walked to Madinah in three months and knocked at the door when Ummul Momineen Hazrat Umme Salma answered the door and told him that the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) was away from home and will not be back for some time. He left a message saying that Uwais had come from Yemen to meet his beloved Prophet but could not see him and was returning back. He then returned home as promised to his mother. When the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) returned and was told about Uwais al-Qarani’s visit, he was very sad, and he used to say: “I can smell the beauty of my friend from the land of Yemen.” Then the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) raised his status to a “Companion”.
When he heard that the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.)’s few teeth were broken in the Battle of Uhad, he took a stone and broke all his teeth as he did not which teeth of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) were broken! This is a rare example of love!
After the sad demise of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.), he came to the Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (a.s.) in Kufa and remained with him for the rest of his life till the Battle of Siffeen with Muawiya and was then martyred. He was a very pious Muslim and took pleasure in worship of Allah. He had little interest in the worldly riches.
Sayings of Uwais al-Qarani: “By Allah! The thought of death and the fear of ultimate end leave no room for happiness in this world for a man of faith. People abuse us when we exhort them to do good and restrain them from evil, but we still rise for the cause of Allah.” (Safina al-Bihar by Shaikh Abbas Qummi).
When Uwais al-Qarani was asked: “How are you this morning?” He replied: “How is a man in the morning when he does not know if he will be alive in the evening, and in the evening he does not know if he will be alive in the morning.”
Sufism, in the sense of piety, searches for deliverance, godliness and freedom, originated under the inspirations of the teachings of Islam. Some of the works mention among others, mention the name of Uwais al-Qarani, and many spiritual accomplishments and qualities are attributed to them. Sufi following Uwais al-Qarani is found around the world. They believe in the transmission of spiritual knowledge between two individuals without the need for physical interaction between the two. They are known as “Uwaisi”
Long worshipper: Uwias Qarani was one of those individuals, who completely enraptured with worship such that, at times he would pass the entire night in the state of ruku while at other times he would say: “Tonight is the night for prostration.”, and would remain in prostration till dawn. He was told: “What is this inconvenience that you impose upon yourself?”He replied: “O’ how I wish that the entire eternity be one night, which I could pass in one prostration!”
Rabi’ ibn Khathim (buried in Mashhad, and popularly known as Khwaja Rabi’) relates: “I was in Kufa, and my prime objective was to meet Uwais Qarani. When I eventually found him, he was engaged in his afternoon prayers. I said to myself: “I shall wait till he completes his prayer.”
Completing his afternoon prayers, he began reciting supplications and continued to do so till it was the time for Maghreb and Isha prayers. Having offered them, he engaged himself in the recommended prayers-at times in ruku and at other times in sadjda, and it continued till the night reached its termination. 
He offered his morning prayers and once again engaged himself in reciting supplications till the sun rose above the horizon where upon he permitted himself some rest. Waking up, he performed his ablution and was about to start his worship when I approached him and said: “How greatly you trouble yourself!” He said: “It is for achieving comfort that I endure such effort.” I said to him: “I did not see you eat anything. How do you manage to arrange for your expenses?” He said: “Allah has taken upon Himself to provide sustenance to His servants. Now do not indulge into any more of such talks. Having spoken thus, he left.”  
He was martyred in the year 657 A.D. and was buried at al-Raqqah, Syria. In March 2013, the terrorists bombed and damaged the tombs of this “True Lover of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.)”
Sources used: Anecdotes of Reflection – part 3                                            by Sayyid Ali Akbar Sadaaqat
Islamic-forum.net,  Lantern of the Path by Imam Jaffar as-Sadiq (a.s.)
Irfan and Tasawwf                                                                                       by Dr. Ahmad Ahmadi

WIKIPEDIA, Ain al-Hayat

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

HAZRAT ASMA BINTE UMAIS (S.A.)

She belonged to the Bane Khatm tribe. Her sister was Salma binte Umais who was married to Hazrat Hamza ibne Abdul Mutallib. Her maternal half-siblings included two of the Ummahat-ul-Momineen; Hazrat Zaynab binte Khuzayma and Hazrat Maymona binte al-Hariss.
She was considered as a lady companion of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s). She was a very considerate lady. At the time of the demise of Ummul Momineen Hazrat Khadija (s.a.), Hazrat Asma was present and saw her crying. On inquiry, Hazrat Khadija (s.a.) replied: “I am crying for Fatima, as every woman needs a close friend on her wedding to help her; Fatima is still very young and I am afraid she will be alone on her wedding.” Hazrat Asma said: “O’ My mistress, I vow to you by Allah, that if I am alive then, I will take your place!” The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) also wept and prayed for her that may Allah save her from all sides, and also promised Paradise for her and her three sisters.  
She was married to Hazrat Jaffar-e-Tayyar ibn Abu Talib. In the year 616 A.D. she immigrated along with her husband to Abyssinia. She had three sons; Muhammad, Abdullah, and Aun. (The women of Madina by Bewly A. page 96, London). They returned to Madinah at the time of the Battle of Khyber in the year 628 A.D. The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) said: “Should I celebrate the Victory of Khyber or the return of Jaffar and his family?” In the year 629, during the Battle of Mu’tah, Hazrat Jaffar was martyred. The Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.) came to her house and kindly put his hands on the children. Hazrat Asma quickly asked if she had become a widow. He was impressed by her intelligence. He informed her that Allah had provided two red wings to Hazrat Jaffar. He sent food to the family for three days and since then it has become a Sunnah to provide food to the bereaved family for three days.  
She married a second time to Caliph Abu Bakr and Hazrat Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr was born in the year 632 A.D. on the way to the Hajja-tul-Wida, the Last Pilgrimage of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). After the death of the Caliph Abu Bakr, she married the Commander of the Faithful, after the tragic demise of the beloved daughter of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.), the Lady of Paradise, Hazrat Fatima Zahra (s.a.). At the time of her Shahadah, Hazrat Asma was living with her taking care of the house work. She was kind, humane and motherly toward Hazrat Fatima (s.a.). At the time of Hazrat Fatima (s.a.)’s pleading for her rights about Fadak in the Mosque of Prophet, Hazrat Asma had backed her claim.

She told Hazrat Asma that she did not like the way the dead bodies of the women-folks were carried those days as the shape of the dead body was apparent. Hazrat Asma told Hazrat Fatima that she remembered the coffins made in Abyssinia and prepared a replica for her. Hazrat Fatima Zahra liked the coffin, which was like a box completely covering the dead body.
On the fateful day of her Shahadat, Hazrat Fatima only 18 years, prepared for her final journey. It was only 70 or 90 days after the sad demise of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). She prepared food for her beloved children, washed their clothes and told Hazrat Asma to feed the children when they return and that she was going in her room for final prayers and when she stop hearing the Takbir from inside the room, then let Imam Ali (a.s.) know about her demise. Hazrat Asma followed her instructions. Hazrat Fatima Zahra (s.a.) for Hazrat Asma: “May Allah protect you from the fire”
After Hazrat Fatima (s.a.)’s demise, Imam Ali (a.s.) married Hazrat Asma binte Umais and adopted Hazrat Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr and raised him and ultimately appointed him the Governor of Egypt but Muawiya had him killed and his dead body was burnt in the leather of a donkey! She bore two sons from Imam Ali (a.s.); Yahya and Muhammad al-Asghar.
Hazrat Asma was the narrator of over 60 Traditions of the Noble Prophet (s.a.w.a.s.). She was the witness and narrator of the famous event of “Return of sun” for Imam Ali (a.s.) to pray his salat. She was one of those women who strongly believed in the Wilayat of Imam Ali (a.s.) and as for her piety, his son Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr is a prima- facie evidence for that! Imam Ali (a.s.) used to call him “his own son”
Sources used:
Duas.org, WIKIPEDIA, The year of Fatima’s marriage-al-Islam.org, Oocities.com/ Rohullah_Najafi World AhleBayt Women Organization

Fourteen Stars                                                                                      by Sayyid Najmul Hasan Karrarvi