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  • Purification (Tah¯arah)
  • ABLUTION (Wuz¯u)
  • THE FIVE ACTS (Fitra)
  • BATH (Ghusl)
  • Prayer (Sal¯at)
  • The Poor Tax (Zak¯at)
  • Fasting and Pilgrimage (Sawm and
  • DIVORCE (Tal¯aq)
  • WAQF
  • Religious Wars (Jih¯ad)
  • AD
  • Government (Al-Im¯ara)
  • Hunting, Food and Drink
  • GAME
  • MILK
  • SILK
  • HAIR
  • DOGS
  • VEIL
  • LUCK
  • The Prophet’s Companions
  • AN
  • AS
  • AL
  • PARADISE (Al-Janna - “The Garden”)
  • HELL
  • Repentance (Tauba), I
  • Hypocrites (Mun¯afiq¯in)

Understanding Isl¯ m Through a H¯ d¯ a is

Religious Faith or Fanaticism?
Reformatted from http://www.bharatvani.org/books/uith with hyperlinked Contents entries

Ram Swarup

Voice of India, New Delhi



Isl¯m is not merely a theology, or a statement about All¯h and his relationship with a a His creatures. Besides containing doctrinal and creedal material, it deals with social, penal, commercial, ritualistic, and ceremonial matters. It enters into everything, even into such private areas as one’s dress, marrying, and mating. In the language of the Muslim theologians, Isl¯m is a “complete” and “completed” religion. a It is equally political and military. It has much to do with statecraft, and it has a very specific view of the world peopled by infidels. Since most of the world is still infidel, it is very important for those who are not Muslims to understand Isl¯m. a The sources of Isl¯m are two: the Qur¯n and the Had¯ (“Sayings” or “Traditions”), a a is usually called the Sunn¯h (“customs”), both having their center in Muhammad. The Qura an contains the Prophet’s “revelations” (wahy); the Had¯ all that he did or said, or ¯ is, enjoined, forbade or did not forbid, approved or disapproved. The word Had¯ singular is, in form (pl. ah¯d¯ is also used collectively for all the traditions taken together, for the a is), whole sacred tradition. Muslim theologians make no distinction between the Qur¯n and the Had¯ To them a is. both are works of revelation or inspiration. The quality and degree of the revelation in both works is the same; only the mode of expression is different. To them, the Had¯ is the is Qur¯n in action, revelation made concrete in the life of the Prophet. In the Qur¯n, All¯h a a a speaks through Muhammad; in the Sunn¯h, He acts through him. Thus Muhammad’s life a is a visible expression of All¯h’s utterances in the Qur¯n. God provides the divine principle, a a Muhammad the living pattern. No wonder, then, that Muslim theologians regard the Quran and the Had¯ as being supplementary or even interchangeable. To them, the Had¯ is ¯ is is wahy ghair matl u (“unread revelation,” that is, not read from the Heavenly Book like the ¯ Qur¯n but inspired all the same); and the Qur¯n is had¯ mutw¯tir, that is, the Tradition a a is a considered authentic and genuine by all Muslims from the beginning. Thus the Qur¯n and the Had¯ provide equal guidance. All¯h with the help of His a is a Prophet has provided for every situation. Whether a believer is going to a mosque or to his bedroom or to the toilet, whether he is making love or war, there is a command and a pattern to follow. And according to the Qur¯n, when All¯h and His Apostle have decided a a a matter, the believer does not have his or her own choice in the matter (33:36). And yet situations do arise when the guidance is lacking. It is said of Im¯m ibn Hanbal a (b. A. H. 164, d. A. H. 241 = A. D. 780-855) that he never ate watermelons, even though he knew that the Prophet had done so, because he did not know his manner of eating them. The same story is related even of B¯yazid Bist¯n, a great S¯fi, whose mystical teachings a a u

ii went against orthodox Qur¯nic theology. a Though the non-Muslim world is not as familiar with the Sunn¯h, or Had¯ as with a is, the Qur¯n, the former even more than the latter is the most important single source of a Isl¯mic laws, precepts, and practices. Ever since the lifetime of the Prophet, millions of a Muslims have tried to imitate him in their dress, diet, hair-style, sartorial fashions, toilet mores, and sexual and marital habits. Whether one visits Arabia or Central Asia, India or Malaysia, one meets certain conformities, such as the veil, polygamy, ablution, and istinj¯ a (abstersion of the private parts). These derive from the Sunn¯h, reinforced by the Qur¯n. a a All are accepted not as changing social usages but as divinely ordained forms, as categorical moral imperatives. The subjects that the Had¯ treats are multiple and diverse. It gives the Prophet’s views is of All¯h, of the here and the hereafter, of hell and heaven, of the Last Day of Judgment, of a ¯ an (faith), sal¯t (prayer), zak¯t (poor tax), sawm (fast), and hajj (pilgrimage), popularly im¯ a a known as religious subjects; but it also includes his pronouncements on jih¯d (holy war), a al-anf¯l (war booty), and khums (the holy fifth); as well as on crime and punishment, on a food, drink, clothing, and personal decoration, on hunting and sacrifices, on poets and soothsayers, on women and slaves, on gifts, inheritances, and dowries, on toilet, ablution, and bathing; on dreams, christianing, and medicine, on vows and oaths and testaments, on images and pictures, on dogs, lizards, and ants. The Had¯ constitutes a voluminous literature. It gives even insignificant details of is the Prophet’s life. Every word from his lips, every nod or shake of his head, every one of his gestures and mannerisms was important to his followers. These are remembered by them as best as they could and passed on from generation to generation. Naturally those who came into greater contact with the Prophet had the most to tell about him. ’Aisha, his wife, Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar, his aristocratic followers, Anas b. M¯lik, his servant u a for ten years, who died at the ripe age of 103 in A. H. 93, and ’Abdullah b. ’Abb¯s, his a cousin, were fertile sources of many ah¯d¯ But another most prolific source was Ab¯ a is. u Huraira, who is the authority for 3,500 traditions. He was no relation of the Prophet, but he had no particular work to do except that he specialized in collecting traditions from other Companions. Similarly, 1,540 traditions derive from the authority of J¯bir, who a was not even a Quraish but belonged to the Khazraj tribe of Medina, which was allied to Muhammad. Every had¯ has a text (matn) and a chain of transmission (isn¯d). The same text may is a have several chains, but every text must be traced back to a Companion (as-h¯b), a man a who came into personal contact with the Prophet. The Companions related their stories to their successors (t¯bi un), who passed them on to the next generation. a ¯ At first the traditions were orally transmitted, though some of the earliest narrators must have also kept written notes of some kind. But as the Companions and the Successors and their descendants died, a need was felt to commit them to writing. There were two

to have them present at the Pledge of al-Aqabah or included among the combatants at the Battles of Badr and Uhud . and under their influence new traditions were concocted and old ones usefully edited. Ab¯ D¯ud entertained only 4. H. orders were issued for the ifa collection of all extant traditions under the supervision of Bakr ibn Muhammad. The Qur¯nic injunctions were probably sufficient for the uncomplicated life a of the early Arabs. H. 194-256=A.800 traditions out of a total of 500.iii other reasons. Spurious traditions were coming into being. The pious and the hero-worshipping mind also added many miracles around the life of Muhammad. they had to seek a supplementary source of authority to take into account new situations and new customs. 209-279=A. D. 810ail ai 870). Spurious traditions also arose in order to promote factional interests. D.000 names were mentioned in different chains of transmission but that Bukh¯r¯ ai . they favoured and blackmailed as it il suited them. under Khal¯ ’Umar II. drowning the genuine one’s. 824-892). Under these circumstances. Ab¯ D¯ud as-Sajistani (A. Bukh¯r¯ laid down elaborate canons of authenticity and applied them with a ruthless ai hand. They were sources of prestige and profit. the Ummayads. 819-875). a serious effort was made to collect and sift all the current traditions. worked up in order to promote what the fabricators thought were elements of a pious life. Traditionists like Shurahb¯ b. There were also more personal motives at work. But the Muslim world had to wait another hundred years before the work of sifting was undertaken by a galaxy of traditionists like Muhammad Ism¯¯ al-Bukh¯r¯ (A. There were many motives at play behind this development. rejecting the spurious ones and committing the correct one’s to writing. Sa’d utilized their power effectively. It is said that he collected 600. Some of these new traditions were merely pious frauds. but as the power of the Muslims grew and they became the masters of an extended empire. already very high in the estimation of the early Muslims. Muslim ibnu’l-Hajj¯j (A. 817-888) u a¯ and others. 204-261=A. So Traditionists who could get up right traditions were very much in demand. In this struggle. to have them mentioned in any context of loyalty and usefulness to the Prophet . 202-275 = A. D.000. there were cutthroat struggles for power between several factions. Soon after Muhammad’s death. To have one’s ancestors counted among the Emigrants or Helpers. H. H. great passions were generated.000 of them as authentic. particularly the Alids. and later on the Abbasides. There was an even more pressing reason. in the practice a of the Prophet. This was found in the Sunn¯h. D.was a great thing.000 traditions but accepted only 7. or what they thought were the right theological views. so that the man tended to be lost in the myth. A hundred years after Muhammad. The traditions were no longer mere edifying stories. Ab¯ ¯ a Muhammad at-Tirmiz¯ a u Is¯ i (A. It is also u a¯ said that 40.in short.

and only six collections. and At-Tabar¯ An English translation of Ish¯q’s a i. the Had¯ the context. 32). the hero looms larger. In fact. the Had¯ acquired is substantially the form in which it is known today. a Companion and a great Traditionist (authority for 305 traditions). The a Qur¯n and the Had¯ are interdependent and mutually illuminating. the Sih¯h Sitta as they are called. 1958). 151 (A. a is Had¯ gives flesh and blood to the Qur¯nic revelations. narrated. 768) a in Baghdad. The ih translation of an Eastern text by an Eastern mind has one advantage: it retains the flavor of the original. Other biographers of note who succeeded him and who amply made use of his labors were Al-W¯qid¯ Ibn Hish¯m. H. the Qur¯n cannot be understood without the aid is a ¯ for every Qur¯nic verse has a context. or collections. 85 and died in A. rather all too human. is ¯ Sidd¯ ¯ for filling up this gap and giving Therefore. H. Of these. and read them with a feeling of awe and worship. his forehead. Over a thousand collections. To clarify certain points. reveals their more earthly motives. The lapse of time helps the process. Muslim believers are expected to read the traditions in the same spirit and with the same mind. Apart from several magh¯z¯ books (books about a i the Prophet’s campaigns) which went before. There is still a good deal of the miraculous and the improbable in them. The Qur¯n provides a is a the text. It ih provides the base. As the distance grows. who was born in Medina in A. which were in vogue died away in due course. we have also quoted here and there from the Prophet’s traditional biographies. the ones by Im¯m Bukh¯r¯ and Im¯m a ai a Muslim are at the top . Muhammad Ashraf). the Had¯ is a collection of stories. Within three hundred years of the death of Muhammad. which only the Had¯ provides.iv accepted only 2. is a and provides them with the necessary locale. but they contain much that is factual and historical. that he trembled as he narrated a had¯ sweat often breaking out all over is. about a man.” they are called. But the Muslim mind has been taught to look at them in a different frame of mind. the chaotic mass was cut down and some order and proportion were restored. a became authentic Sah¯ ihs. It is said of ’Abdullah ibn Mas¯d (died u at the age of seventy in A.“the two authentics. Until now only partial English translations of some Had¯ collections were available. almost the very first definitive biography was that of Ibn Ish¯q. H. The of the Had is. is rather unedifying. a i. To the infidel with his critical faculty still intact. We have also chosen the Sah¯ Muslim as the main text for our present volume. The believers have handled. It may not be in the Queen’s English and may seem rather exotic to those . though in our discussion we have often quoted from the Qur¯n. we must thank Dr. Guillaume is available under the title The Life of Muhammad ¯ a (Oxford. D. a S¯ irat Ras ul All¯h by A.000 as genuine. Abdul Hamid iqi us a full-scale translation of the Sah¯ Muslim (Lahore: Sh. which are no more than ordered traditions arranged chronologically around events in the life of the Prophet. As a result of the labor of these Traditionists.

Thanks to the new oil wealth of the Arabs. They buy local politicians. Muslims wielded their a swords to root out polytheism. is again a on the march.. Here they work from the bottom as well as from the top. It was this support which was behind the rebellion of the Moro Muslims in the Philippines. it is difficult to assimilate Muslim minorities into the national mainstream of a country. In ih a is. Sidd¯ ¯ translation.e.e. Dr. a Even in the best of circumstances. If anything. When we read Dr. dethrone the gods of their neighbors. in Pakistan and Bangladesh. These were accidental terrestrial rewards for disinterested celestial labors. They have adopted the Muslim minorities of D¯ru’l Harb. there is a continuing Muslim problem that refuses solution despite the division of .190 ah¯d¯ he provides 3. the old mission is being revived. their mission was even more pretentious for it was commanded by All¯h Himself. a Now a word about how the present volume came to be written.. They show that the role of scholarship in Isl¯m is secondary . we felt that it contained important material about Isl¯m which iqi’s a should be more widely known. or “countries of peace. Arab support has made the task still more difficult. In India. having been dormant for several centuries. He has provided copious iqi explanatory notes. They have bought the conversion of the presidents of Gabon and the Central African Empire. Their money is active throughout the Muslim world. we have also quoted from the notes . and install in their place their own godling. a i. but it is faithful and reproduces the atmosphere of the original. because the notes are set in a well-established scholarly lore. the notes give us an authentic taste of traditional Muslim scholarship. in Malaysia. Isl¯m. All¯h. Sidd¯ ¯ has done more than translate the original work. infidel countries which have not yet been fully subdued by Muslims. and even India. with a large Muslim population. The oil-rich Arabs are assuming responsibility for Muslims everywhere.v whose mother tongue is English. The Arabs are still militarily weak and dependent on the West. They are using these minorities to convert these countries into D¯ru’l Isl¯m. Here and there. ¯ even brilliance within its self-chosen role of justifying and defending. a a countries where Isl¯m dominates. but the full fury of their interference is to be seen in countries of Asia and Africa which are economically poor and ideologically weak.about forty-five times . they could be an important subject of treatment in their own right. That they received plunder and established an empire in a the process is another matter. In fact. A kind of “Muslim Cominform” is taking shape in Jidda.” i. Even before the Europeans came on the scene.to give the reader a sampling of Isl¯mic scholarship. In a Sah¯ containing 7. but capable of cleverness and an and the Had is. looking after their spiritual needs as well as their more temporal interests.that it is the handmaid of the Qur a ¯ unmotivated by any seeking of its own.081 footnotes. addition to clarifying obscure points and references. Indonesia. the Muslims had their own variation of the “white man’s burden” of civilizing the world.

throwing up leaders like Khomeini and Mu’ammar Qaddafi. Arab interference has complicated matters still further. Whether this fundamentalism is considered resurgence or reversal and the threat of the reappearance of an old imperialism will depend on one’s point of view. they repeatedly appeal to them and revert to them. It is a weapon of self-defense. Isl¯m claims to have defined human thought and behavior a for all time to come. since we have followed the lead of the Sah¯ Muslim. in many cases. But on calm reflection. a is a is . against the materialist and bourgeois values of the West. and thus. Indeed. Wherever it triumphs. was unavoidable. motivated by a compulsive atavism. which has the adih vantage of being available in an English translation. It has one drawback. both of commission and omission. In many instances the same text is reported in several chapters with only minor variations but with different chains of transmission. it resists any change. Therefore. According to some thinkers. and this fundamentalism in a turn is aggressive in character. one had¯ is stands for a number of ah¯d¯ and to quote one had¯ is really to quote a whole chapter.243 chapters.190 traditions divided into 1. this self-limitation is no great disadvantage. Another 700 of the ah¯d¯ we have quoted are group ah¯d¯ or their summaries. a is. On the other hand. and we have a quoted extensively and faithfully from it. is In this volume. A new fundamentalism is sweeping over the Muslim world. In spite of the limitations of the procedure we have adopted. but we have tried to overcome it here and there by going beyond the confines of this particular Sah¯ ih. But anything that throws light on any aspect of the problem will be a great contribution. and it feels justified in imposing its beliefs and behavior patterns on others. This we find the Had¯ literature most fitted to do. providing an intimate view of the elements that a constitute orthodox Isl¯m in their pristine purity. though. it is also something more. similarly. the Sah¯ Muslim remains ih a very comprehensive and informative source on Isl¯mic beliefs and behavior. some matters quite important in themselves remain ih undeveloped and even untouched because they are not treated in the Sah¯ This problem ih. While we have in this way touched on many points. Isl¯m is by nature fundamentalist. this fundamentalism is nothing but a search by Muslims for self-identity and self-assertion.vi the country. Since most Had¯ collections contain is the same core material. it fruitfully defines the field of our study and inquiry. dictatorship comes in its wake. it is also their dream of recapturing the grandeur of their old imperial days. we have chosen as our guide the Sah¯ Muslim. derived from the available symbols of their culture. we have discussed none in full. For this purpose. It gives us 7. we have quoted about 675 individual had¯ having this representative is character. it is these very elements of Isl¯m a a that Muslims find most fascinating. Fundamentalism and authoritarianism are twins. It gives a living picture of Isl¯m is a at its source and of Isl¯m in the making. And.

they were All¯h’s own acts. comprising 180 traditions.” accompanies the mention of any of his more important a Companions. like other Had¯ collections. we have omitted these formulas in the interest of smoother reading. The picture that emerges is hardly flattering. “may All¯h be pleased with him. Most of the discussion lacks inwardness. mating. whenever the name or the title of the Prophet is mentioned. the moral is whatever he did. dispensing justice. hating. Morality does not determine the Prophet’s actions. Muhammad’s acts were not ordinary acts. The Prophet is caught as it were in the ordinary acts of his life-sleeping.vii Portions that deal with mere rituals and ceremonies and have no particular importance to non-Muslims we omitted altogether. “the greater warfare” directed against one’s a own lower nature (nafs). There is no makeup. “may peace be upon him. eating. could have found this story so inspiring. The answer is that the believers are conditioned to look at the whole thing through the eyes of faith. Here one comes to know him. In regard to the title of the book.” In devout Isl¯mic literature. there is not a single one that remotely suggests a the idea of the “inner pilgrimage” about which mystics speak so much. in the long “Book of Pilgrimage” (Kit¯b al-Hajj). the Had¯ gives such a spontaneous and realistic view is of the Prophet that it could most faithfully be called “Muhammad in the Words of Had¯ is ¯ Muslim)”. a It was in this way and by this logic that Muhammad’s opinions became the dogmas of Isl¯m and his personal habits and idiosyncrasies became moral imperatives: All¯h’s a a commands for all believers in all ages and climes to follow. generation after generation. but we readily included anything that had a deeper ring.but the believers look at the whole thing differently. no posturing for posterity. not through his pompous deeds and thoughts.and certainly many of the things he did do not conform to ordinary ideas of morality . a it is accompanied by a standard blessing. The Sah¯ Muslim. but since a good deal of Isl¯m is Mohammadism. no cosmetics. and one is left wondering why in the first instance it was reported at all and whether it was done by his admirers or enemies. but his actions determine and define morality. it could equally justly (Sah ih a be called “Isl¯m in the Words of Had¯ a is. planning expeditions and revenge against his enemies.” A similar formula. but through his more workaday ideas and actions. in the “Book of Jih¯d and Campaigns”. To them morality derives from the Prophet’s actions. An infidel in his fundamental misguidance may find the Prophet rather sensual and cruel . breathing person than the portrayals given in his more formal biographies. containing 583 traditions. although such instances are rather rare. there is hardly anything that a would suggest the sentiment of jih¯d’l-akbar. One is also left to wonder how the believers. an impressionistic view that makes him seem more a living. In our quotations from this literature. also gives very intimate glimpses of the ih is life of the Prophet. Similarly. For example. . praying.

Therefore. but these could be disregarded by non-Arabian readers. P. Sisir Kumar Ghose. we have rendered the letters of the Arabic alphabet by their nearest English equivalents in sound-value. I thank them all gratefully. Shri P. and zw¯d by z. they have preferred to remain anonymous. I also thank the editors and publishers of Exposition Press for their appreciation and cooperation from the very beginning and for bringing out a very presentable edition of this book. the Arabic alphabet’s se.viii Diacritical marks are necessary in specialist works. and Mrs. Lohia and Shri Sita Ram Goel were associated with the manuscript at every stage of its writing. ze. now both resident in America. s¯ and sw¯d have been uniformly rendered in. z¯l. RAM SWARUP . Jain. in order to avoid them as far as possible. Shri H. a by the English s. Rajappan Achary typed out the manuscript. and an apostrophe ( ’ ). The present edition is due entirely to two Indian friends. C. Gupta. but they do not have the same usefulness in books of a more general nature. te (soft dental) and toe by t. for they do not affect the substance of the book. one from Bengal and the other from Andhra Pradesh. both have to be learned by ear. Dr. Shri L. but we have made it do also for another sound. The apostrophe generally is used to render another sound called hamza. For example. Shri Kaidar Nath Sahani. Shri A. ain. We have also used a a two diacritical marks: a macron (¯) over a vowel sound to indicate that it is long. C. Francine Ellison Krishna read the manuscript in that order and suggested many improvements.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CLEANING THE TEETH (Misw¯k) . . THE PROPHET’S FATHER AND UNCLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ TATH IR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix 1 1 2 3 4 4 5 5 6 8 9 9 11 11 12 12 12 13 13 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . GOOD AND EVIL DEEDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD HAS THE LARGEST FOLLOWING ON THE DAY OF JUDGMENT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . JESUS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MORAL VALUES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . a THE FIVE ACTS (Fitra) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Purification (Tah¯rah) a ABLUTION (Wuz u) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ CLEANSING THE NOSE . THE DAY OF JUDGMENT . . . . . . . THEOLOGY DISTORTS MORALS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD’S NIGHT JOURNEY TO HEAVEN . . . . . . . . . BODILY FUNCTIONS . . . . THE PRE-MUSLIM ARABS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Contents ¯ a 1 Faith (Im¯n) ¯ ALLAH IS NOT ENOUGH . . . . . . . . . . . . . EVIL THOUGHTS AND EVIL DEEDS . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . AND SPORTS . . . . POSTURE DURING PRAYER . . PRAYERS FOR DIFFERENT OCCASIONS . . . . . . . . ¯ THE IM AM . . . . . . . . . FRIDAY PRAYER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ ALLAH ALLOWS MUHAMMAD TERROR AND WAR BOOTY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CURSE ON THE JEWS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ATTACKS ON NON-MUSLIMS . . . . . . SEXUAL POLLUTION AND ABLUTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MUSIC. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD AS A PREACHER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BATH (Ghusl) . . . . . . . BATHING AFTER A SEMINAL EMISSION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DINNER BEFORE PRAYER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Prayer (Sal¯t) a ¯ AZAN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PRAYER IN TIME OF DANGER . . CONSERVING BODY HEAT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . WOMEN AND MOSQUES . . . . THE FIRST MOSQUE: FACING THE QIBLA . . . . . . . . . . . . . TAYAMMUM . . . . . . . . . . . . . DANCE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FOOD AND ABLUTION . . . . MENSTRUATION (Haiz) . . SINGLE BATH FOR MULTIPLE COITUS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BATHING TOGETHER . . .x DON’T EXPOSE YOUR PRIVATE PARTS CONTENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DOS AND DON’TS . . 13 14 14 14 15 15 16 17 17 18 18 19 19 20 20 20 21 21 22 23 23 24 24 24 24 25 25 26 SOILED CLOTHES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BLESSINGS FOR MUHAMMAD .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . URGINGS AND PLEADINGS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . AN UNPOPULAR TAX . . . . . FORNICATION. . . MUHAMMAD AND HIS MOTHER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CHARITY SHOULD BEGIN AT HOME . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . WAR BOOTY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ ZAKAT NOT FOR MUHAMMAD’S FAMILY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . GAINING HEARTS BY GIVING GIFTS . . . . . . . . WEEPING OVER THE DEAD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . AN IDOLATROUS IDEA . . . . . . EXEMPTIONS AND INCENTIVES . . . . . . . . PILGRIMAGE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THEFT. . . . . . . . . . . . . . FASTING NOT OBLIGATORY UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . SEXUAL INTERCOURSE ALLOWED DURING RAMZAN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PACIFICATION . 5 Fasting and Pilgrimage (Sawm and Hajj) FASTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CHARITY AND DISCRIMINATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .CONTENTS PRAYERS FOR THE DEAD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THE MERITS OF FASTING . . DEEPER ASPECTS . . . . . . . . . DIVINE SANCTIONS . . . . . . . . OTHER FASTS . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD RUFFLED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PARADISE . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ THE KHWARIJ . . . . . . . . . xi 26 26 27 29 29 30 30 31 31 32 32 33 33 34 34 34 35 36 36 36 39 39 40 41 41 42 42 42 . . . . . . . . 4 The Poor Tax (Zak¯t) a ¯ USES OF ZAKAT FUNDS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DISSATISFACTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ON MARRYING A VIRGIN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PROHIBITIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . .xii CONTENTS ¯ THE STATE OF IHR AM . SAF¯ IYYA . . . . . . . NIGHT SESSIONS . . . TASTAHIDDA . . . . . . . . CASTING THE PEBBLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THE ORIGINAL SIN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ZAINAB BINT JAHSH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CIRCUMAMBULATION AND KISSING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . HUNTING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CAPTIVE WOMEN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ RIHANA AND JUWAIR¯ IYA . . . . . . . . . KA’BA CLOSED TO NON-MUSLIMS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . WOMEN’S RIGHTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . a THREE PRONOUNCEMENTS . . . . . . . . . . . SHAVING: MUHAMMAD’S HAIR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43 44 44 45 45 46 47 47 49 50 50 51 52 52 52 53 54 54 55 55 55 55 55 56 57 58 58 59 6 Marriage and Divorce ( Al-Nik¯h and Al-Tal¯q) a a TEMPORARY MARRIAGE (Mut’ah) . . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD’S MARRIAGES . . . THE HUSBAND’S RIGHTS . . . . . . . . . ANIMAL SACRIFICE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CAST A GLANCE AT THE WOMAN YOU WANT TO MARRY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DEPORTMENT TOWARD ONE’S WIVES . . ¯ ¯ ¯ ZIHAR AND ILA’ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DRINK . . DIVORCE (Tal¯q) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . COITUS INTERRUPTUS (Al-’azl) . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . WHICH SLAVES DESERVE EMANCIPATION? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CONTRACTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DEBTS . Vows and Oaths SPECULATION FORBIDDEN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD’S LAST WILL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NO MAINTENANCE ALLOWANCE FOR A DIVORCEE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BARTER DISAPPROVED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . AND BEQUESTS . . . . . . . . . . . . GIFTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . OUTBIDDING . . . . . . WAQF . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . IMPROPER EARNINGS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .CONTENTS MUHAMMAD’S SEPARATION FROM HIS WIVES . . . . . . . . . . . . INVOKING CURSE (Li’¯n) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inheritances. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ RIBA . . . . . . . Gifts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . VOWS AND OATHS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . SLAVERY HAS ITS OWN REWARD . . . THE PROPHET AS A LANDLORD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bequests. . . . . . . . . . . . . EMANCIPATION OF SLAVES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xiii 59 61 62 63 63 64 64 65 65 65 66 67 67 68 68 68 68 69 69 69 70 70 70 70 71 71 71 72 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . a EMANCIPATING A SLAVE . . . . . . . . . . GIFTS. . . . . . . . TWO-THIRD FOR LEGAL HEIRS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . WHO INHERITS A SLAVE’S PROPERTY? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . OPTION OF DIVORCE DIFFERENT FROM DIVORCE . . . . ABROGATION OF AN OATH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Business Transactions. . . PROPER READING FOR MUHAMMAD’S DESCENDANTS . OTHER DISABILITIES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . INHERITANCES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . TENANCY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . JUSTIFICATION OF BURNING TREES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ TA’Z IR . . . . . . . . . . . CRIME WITH IMPUNITY . PUNISHMENT FOR DRINKING . . . . . . . . . A MUSLIM AND THE DEATH PENALTY . A SLAVE ADULTERESS . . . . . . . . . . . PUNISHMENT HAS ITS REWARD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ QIS AS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DEATH PENALTY FOR APOSTASY REBELLION . . . . . . . . . SPOILS OF WAR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .xiv CONTENTS THE “GOD WILLING” CLAUSE . . Qis¯s. . . . . . . . . . . FLOGGING COULD BE POSTPONED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . INDEMNITY (DIYAT) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A MOSAIC PRACTICE REVIVED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Religious Wars (Jih¯d) a THREE OPTIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DIVISION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . JUDICIAL DECISIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Had ud) a a ¯ ¯ QASAMAH . . . . . . . . PUNISMENT FOR THEFT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CHILDREN OF THE POLYTHEISTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FORNICATION AND ADULTERY JOINED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . SELF-CONFESSED ADULTERY . RAID WITHOUT WARNING . . . . . . . . . . ADULTERY AND FORNICATION . . . . . . . . . . 72 73 74 74 75 75 76 76 76 77 77 78 78 78 79 79 80 80 80 80 81 83 83 84 84 84 84 85 8 Crime and Punishment (Qas¯mah. . . MODEL PERSECUTION . . . . . ¯ HAD UD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . 103 THE AGE OF MAJORITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ AL-GHANIMAH AND FAI’ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 ¯ THE SUPERIORITY OF JIHAD TO OTHER ACTS . . . . . . . . . . 105 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 RULERS . . . . . . 101 WARNING AGAINST SCHISM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . EXPULSION OF THE JEWS AND CHRISTIANS . . 103 ¯ JIHAD AS PROOF OF TRUE CONVERSION . . 100 OBEDIENCE TO RULERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD’S SHARE . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD ACCUSED OF CONCEALING SPOILS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 ¯ THE MERITS OF JIHAD . . . ¯ HELP FROM A POLYTHEIST IN JIHAD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MIRACLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THE MAIN SOURCE OF LIVELIHOOD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Government (Al-Im¯ra) a THE SUPREMACY OF THE QURAISH . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 ¯ JIHAD . . . . . 102 WARNING AGAINST BAD TIMES . . THE CONQUEST OF MECCA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xv 85 86 86 88 89 90 90 91 91 92 95 96 97 97 99 99 ¯ ONLY A QURAISH MAY BE KHAL IFA . . . . . . . . . ¯ THE BANU QURAIZA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ JIHAD TAKES PRECEDENCE OVER PRAYER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THE QUARREL OVER MUHAMMAD’S PROPERTIES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102 HORSES AND ARCHERY . . . . . . . 101 SOLIDARITY AND SINGLE LEADERSHIP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . RAIDS AND BATTLES . . . . . . ASSASSINATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .CONTENTS A GREAT MOTIVATING FORCE . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 MUHAMMAD AND DRINKING . . . . . . . . . . . . Poetry. . . . . . . 106 BRAIN-TEASERS . . . . . . . . . 116 MIRACULOUS FEEDING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113 POT AND PIETY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 ASSES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Decorations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 AN EARTHLY NOTE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 11 Hunting. . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 MILK . . 111 KILL WITH A GOOD ATTITUDE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112 PROPER AGE . 116 GARLIC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Vi- . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .xvi CONTENTS ¯ THE HIGHEST GRADE OF HEAVEN IS RESERVED FOR THE MUJAHID . . . 110 FLESH LAWFUL AND UNLAWFUL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113 PROPER AGENCY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . HARES . . . . 110 HORSES . . . . . . . . 116 DO NOT FIND FAULT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Magic. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112 THE PROPER TIME FOR SACRIFICE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111 SACRIFICES . . 109 DOS AND DON’TS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . General Behavior. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Greetings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 PUMPKINS AND CUCUMBERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 12 Clothing. 114 DRINKS . 113 SACRIFICE IS COMPULSORY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 114 ¯ NABIZ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 TABLE MANNERS . . . . . . . . . . Food and Drink 109 GAME . . . . . . . LOCUSTS. . . . . . . . . . . . 105 THE STORY OF A MARTYR . . . . . . . . . 111 LIZARDS. . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120 FALSE HAIR AND FACIAL CULTURE . . 122 DON’T PEEP INTO ANOTHER MAN’S HOUSE . . . . . . . . . . . . 126 ¯ KAHINS . . . . . . . . 125 LUCK . . . . . . . . . . . . .CONTENTS sions. 123 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 128 CHESS . . . . . . . . . . 125 ¯ NO EVIL OMEN. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123 MAGIC AND SPELLS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120 PICTURES AND STATUES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120 HAIR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dreams xvii 119 SILK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123 FIRST GREETINGS VEIL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 129 MUHAMMAD’S DREAMS . . ANTS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 125 LEPROSY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . POETRY. . 130 13 Muhammad on Muhammad 131 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 SALUTATIONS AND GREETINGS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 121 NAMING INFANTS AFTER MUHAMMAD . . 120 DOGS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NO INFECTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126 WINDS AND CLOUDS . . . . . . . . . . . 129 VISIONS . . . . . . . 127 CORRECT WORDS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 ASKING PERMISSION BEFORE ENTERING A HOUSE . . . . . . . . . 124 CURES BY INCANTATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NO HAMA. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 ¯ TAHNIK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . VISIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119 SANDALS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 121 PERSONAL NAMES . . . . . . . . 127 SNAKES. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CATS . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .xviii CONTENTS SELF-ESTIMATION . . . . . . 135 PHYSICAL CHANGES UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF WAHY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139 ¯ THE EXCELLENT QUALITIES OF ’UMAR B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 150 B¯ AL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133 MUHAMMAD’S GENEROSITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 134 THE PROPHET’S HAIR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . AB¯ TALIB . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 135 THE PROPHET HAD THE BEST KNOWLEDGE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . MU’AZ . . . . . KHATTAB . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 133 THE PROPHET’S BODILY CHARACTERISTICS: FRAGRANCE . . . . . . . . . 134 THE SEAL OF PROPHETHOOD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 146 I THE MERITS OF ZAID B. . . . . . . . 133 ADULATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 147 THE MERITS OF FAT¯ IMA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . AB¯ WAQQAS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 151 IL ¯ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 132 A PROPHET’S DOUBLE ROLE . . . . . . . 147 IJA THE MERITS OF ’AISHA . . . 146 THE MERITS OF KHAD¯ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 137 PEOPLE OF THE COVENANT OR OBLIGATION (Al-zimma’) . . . . 134 THE PROPHET’S APPEARANCE . . . . . . . 150 THE MERITS OF SA’D B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ’AFFAN . . . 136 OTHER APOSTLES . . . . . . 149 THE MERITS OF ZUBAIR AND TALHA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 143 ’ALI B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 136 MIRACLES . . . . . . . . . . . . 137 14 The Prophet’s Companions 139 ¯ THE MERITS OF ABU BAKR SIDD¯ IQ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 132 MUHAMMAD AT THE HEAVENLY CISTERN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . HARIS . . . . . . . 141 ¯ ’USMAN B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 144 I ¯ SA’D B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 131 THE NAMES OF MUHAMMAD .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . 156 NONVIOLENCE . 163 ¯ RECITING ALLAH’S NAME BEFORE GOING TO SLEEP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 161 KNOWLEDGE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 156 ¯ THE PROPHET’S COVENANT WITH ALLAH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 160 LACK OF INWARDNESS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 166 . . . . . . 158 THEOLOGY DOMINATES MORALITY . 153 MUHAMMAD AT THE CENTER . . . . . . . . . . . . 162 ¯ REMEMBRANCE OF ALLAH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 152 THE TWO ’ABDULLAHS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 166 THE DESTRUCTION . . . . . . . . . Remembrance of God 155 OTHER VIRTUES . . . . . . . . . . . . . 156 RETRIBUTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 157 THE VANITY OF WORLDLY RICHES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 166 NONBELIEVERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159 MUHAMMAD’S MOTHER IN HELL . . . . . . . . . . . . . the Last Day 165 THE POOR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Their Inmates. . . . . . . . . . 153 ¯ THE MERITS OF HASSAN B. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .CONTENTS xix ¯ THE MERITS OF ABU DUJANA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 153 THE MERITS OF ANAS AND HURAIRA . . . Destiny. . . . . 156 SUBJECT PEOPLE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Knowledge. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165 THE DAY OF JUDGMENT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 154 15 Virtue. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 157 THE “BOOK OF PIETY AND SOFTENING OF HEARTS” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . SABIT . . . . . 161 DESTINY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hell. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 164 16 Paradise. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 163 ¯ SUPPLICATE ALLAH AND FLEE FROM SATAN IN THE MORNING . 159 LACK OF UNIVERSALITY . 166 THE CREATION . . . . .

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 169 GOD’S HEIGHT . . . . 174 MUHAMMAD’S MISSION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .“The Garden”) . . . 172 HELL . . . . . . . . . . . . . 170 SPOUSES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 167 THE SPLITTING OF THE MOON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 174 VOYEURISM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 171 OTHER TRADITIONS . . . . . . . 171 NUMBER OF SLAVES . . . . . . . . . . 167 MUHAMMAD’S CURSES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . LAVATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 170 ¯ THE QURANIC PARADISE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 172 NUMBER OF HOURIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 175 THE LAST HOUR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 170 HOURIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 167 SATAN AND THE PROPHET . . 168 ¯ EVERYONE HAS HIS OWN DEVIL: QARIN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 167 THE JEWISH SCHOLARS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 170 HABITATION. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 174 THE POLYTHEISTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 172 NO SIMILAR REWARDS FOR WOMEN . . . . . . . . 175 THE SEVEN REGIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 175 THE RECKONING ON THE DAY OF JUDGMENT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 177 . . . . . . 172 SEE-THROUGH GARMENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . .xx CONTENTS ¯ ALLAH’S PATIENCE . . . 169 CALVINISM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 173 ETERNAL DAMNATION . . . . . . . . . . . . 168 MODERATION IN GIVING SERMONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 168 PARADISE (Al-Janna . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 175 ¯ THE QURANIC HELL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 169 HIERARCHY . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . . . 190 SOME CHRISTIAN AND JEWISH TRIBES SUBMIT . . . . . . . 196 ASSASSINATION OF POETS . . 178 ¯ DAJJAL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . I 181 SIN IS DOUBLY REWARDING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 183 18 Repentance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 195 INTELLECTUAL OPPOSITION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 181 ¯ ALLAH’S WRATH AND MERCY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 197 THE DEMAND FOR MORE COMPLETE SUBMISSION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 177 SOME SIGNS OF THE LAST HOUR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . II (The Self-Criticism of Ka’b b. . 189 A LARGE ARMY GATHERED . . . 182 THE NECKLACE AFFAIR . . . . . 193 THE EXONERATION OF THE PROPHET’S SLAVE-GIRL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 193 PERMANENT WAR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 178 ¯ IBN SAYYAD . . . . 194 19 Hypocrites (Mun¯fiq¯ a in) 195 MEDINANS DOWNGRADED IN THEIR OWN CITY . 198 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 198 THE OPPOSITION DIVIDED AND DEMORALIZED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . M¯lik) a 187 ¯ THE TABUK CAMPAIGN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 190 KA’B SPEAKS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 182 GOOD DEEDS TAKE AWAY BAD ONES . . . . .CONTENTS xxi THE DESTRUCTION OF THE UMMAH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 192 KA’B PARDONED . . . . . . . . . . . 178 17 Repentance (Tauba). . . . . . . . . . . . . 197 A NEW FEAR DESCENDS . . 182 NONBELIEVERS AS REPLACEMENTS FOR BELIEVERS IN HELL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 191 KA’B’S ORDEAL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 188 OPPOSITION TO THE CAMPAIGN . . . . . . . . . . . .

. . .xxii CONTENTS ’ABDULLAH IBN UBAYY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 201 AN ATTEMPT ON THE PROPHET’S LIFE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 201 PRAYER FOR DEAD UNBELIEVERS FORBIDDEN . . . . . 201 INTIMIDATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 206 GENERAL REFERENCE . . . . . . . . . . 200 ’ABDULLAH INCITES THE MEDINANS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 205 ¯ QURAN . . . . . . . 203 ¯ THE LAST S URA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 200 THE ASSASSINATION OF ’ABDULLAH PROPOSED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 205 BIOGRAPHIES OF MUHAMMAD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 206 GENERAL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 199 DISSENSION BETWEEN THE CITIZENS AND THE REFUGEES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 202 DESCRIPTION OF A HYPOCRITE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 206 SHIAISM . . . . . . 203 “THE BOOK OF COMMENTARY” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 204 20 Bibliography 205 ¯ HADIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

a Muhammad tells ’Umar: “He was Gabriel. So also are the notes and comments of the translator.” and then asks them: “Do you a know what belief in All¯h really implies?” Then he himself answers: “It implies testimony a to the fact that there is no god but All¯h. we give their numbers in parentheses.” Later on.Chapter 1 ¯ a Faith (Im¯n) The very first book of the Sah¯ Muslim is the “Book of Faith” (Kit¯b al-¯ an). and in the payment of the poor tax (zak¯t) and the observance of fast (Ramza an) and pilgrimage. in the hereafter. when the inquirer is gone. inform me about al-Isl¯m. and you establish prayer. A delegation of the tribe of Rab¯ visits Muhammad.” The Messenger of a All¯h replies: “Al-Isl¯m implies that you testify that there is no god but All¯h and that a a a Muhammad is the Messenger of All¯h. 1 This is the very first had¯ narrated by ’Umar. faith in a a Muhammad as His Messenger. and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Alla All traditions in the Sah¯ are serially numbered. ifa. He came to you in order to instruct you in matters of religion” (1). ih In quoting them. It discusses questions contains 431 traditions (ah¯d is) a regarding faith. It must be accompanied by belief in the aposa tleship of Muhammad. pay Zak¯t. It ih a im¯ ¯ divided into ninety-two chapters. in the resurrection. yet without any sign of fatigue. the future Khalis ¯ through several chains of narrators. This theme runs through hundreds of ah¯d¯ a is. ¯ ¯ ALLAH IS NOT ENOUGH Belief in All¯h alone in not sufficient. Someone comes to Muhammad from a great distance. Al-Isl¯m is faith in All¯h. He tells i’a the delegates: “I direct you to affirm belief in All¯h alone. in His angels. faith in His Book. observe the a a fast of Ramz¯n [Ramadan] and perform pilgrimage. and says: “Muhammad. 1 1 .

that Muhammad is a the Messenger of All¯h. Muhammad tells Mu’¯z. . Ramz¯n. zak¯t. Sah¯ Muslim. There is a still clearer statement of Muhammad’s mission. and khums (the holy one-fifth).” Other things mentioned are prayer. FAITH (IM AN) ah. then tell them that All¯h has made Zak¯t a a a obligatory for them” (27). Abdul Ham¯ Sidd¯ ¯ the translator of the id iqi.prayer. We shall hear more about war booty in its proper place. and if they accept this. in the history of Isl¯m. to name the more important ones. All¯h a becomes concrete in His threats and punishments of Hell. All¯h and his Messenger . jih¯d (holy war against a polytheists. and they establish prayer. their a a blood and property are guaranteed protection on my behalf” (33). Muhammad and his God . many philosophies. Muhammad retails the word “All¯h” profusely. and “that you pay one-fifth of ¯ a a the booty” (23). All of these concepts will come up for review a in this study in their proper places. but there are other beliefs a and institutions no less important which recur again and again in the Had¯ These are. The acts of virtue may be good in their own way but it is by coming within the fold of Isl¯m that these become significant and a meaningful in the eyes of the Lord” (note 218). gives the Isl¯mic view in the following words: “The good deeds performed ih a in the state of ignorance (outside the fold of Isl¯m) are indicative of the fact that a man is a inclined towards piety. Doomsday.” Muhammad tells the believers (71). Ramz¯n. a a a and pilgrimage are sometimes called the “five pillars” of Isl¯m. Thus without having faith in Isl¯m we cannot serve a a our Master and Lord according to His Will . “None of you is a believer till I am dearer to him than his child. war booty (ghan¯ a imah). GOOD AND EVIL DEEDS What are good deeds and what are bad deeds? These questions have been the concern of many religions. “I have been commanded to fight against people till they testify that there is no god but All¯h. Similarly. is. .2 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 1. and many teachers. But to be truly pious and virtuous it is quite essential to have the correct understanding of the Will of God. Paradise. that I [Muhammad] am the a Messenger of All¯h. In the same vein. It tells us that good deeds are not a matter of indifference but must be coupled with the choice of the right religion. . Hell. and in His promises and rewards of Paradise. These are the staples of the religion preached by Muhammad. This can be confidently known only through the Prophet’s and is embodied in Isl¯m.) jizy¯ (the poll tax paid by polytheists). and pay Zak¯t and if they do it. . jih¯d and war booty have played a more a a important role than even pilgrimage or zak¯t. Isl¯m too has provided its a characteristic answers. zak¯t. whom he sends out as governor of Yemen: a “First call them to testify that there is no god but All¯h.rather. his father and the whole mankind. but there are times when even All¯h a a occupies a backseat.

Muhammad said: “Are you not aware of the fact that Isl¯m wipes out all the previous a misdeeds?” (220). ’Abdullah reports ir that he “pledged allegiance to the Apostle of All¯h on sincerity and well-wishing for every a . but moral values are not altogether neglected.” but who were ready to join him.e. the narrator of the had is. Muhammad at one place defines al-d¯ (“the religion. and a future ones hold no great terror.” i.can prevent his entry. Isl¯m) as in a “sincerity and well-wishing. The translator clarifies the point further: He says that adultery and theft “are both serious offences in Isl¯m . but these do not doom the offender to the a eternal hell.not even adultery and theft . But in Isl¯m. group] without associating anything with All¯h would enter paradise. monotheism.” but polytheism or associating any god “with the Lord is an unpardonable crime and the man who commits it is doomed to Hell” (notes 169 and 170). “Sincerity and well-wishing for whom?” he replies: “For All¯h. .3 In the eyes of Muhammad. nation. only a wrong theology can keep a Muslim out of Paradise. When asked. by the same token. it is a limited to Muslims. “Which sin is the gravest in the eyes of All¯h?” he replies: “That you associate a partner a with All¯h. even if he committed adultery and theft” (171). and jizy¯. In Muslim theology the formula a “belief in All¯h” of course means “belief in All¯h and His Messenger. “Jih¯d.” He replies: “Belief in All¯h.” In a ¯ asks Muhammad whether this is true even clarification. a His Messenger and for the leaders and general Muslims” (98). toward non-Muslims as part of the human race. Jar¯ b. .” he replies (148). His Book. A Muslim owes everything to the ummah. moral or spiritual.” To kill your child and to commit adultery with the wife of your neighbor are a second and third in gravity according to Muhammad (156). Muhammad gave this assurance to some polytheists who “had committed a large number of murders and had excessively indulged in fornication. MORAL VALUES Muhammad’s religion is predominantly theological. In fact.. a wrong theology is worse than wicked deeds. u if the man committed adultery and theft. He has no obligations. The pre-Muslim Arabs believed in many moral values common to all mankind.” Once one accepts a a the theological belief in All¯h and His Messenger.” which should be a good definition for any religion. except to convert them by sword. one’s past crimes are obliterated. For example. But on being asked. Muhammad tells us: “Gabriel came to me and gave me tidings: Verily he who died amongst your Ummah [sect. sincerity is a universal human value. But no morally wicked act .” a “What next?” he is asked. To another person who felt a sense of guilt about his past. Muhammad retained these values but gave them a sectarian twist. and we should exercise it a in our relations with one another irrespective of creed and nationality. Muhammad is asked about “the best of deeds. If polytheism is the worst of crimes. Ab¯ Zarr. very little to others. Muhammad replies: “Yes. spoils. is the best of virtues.

Men driven by ordinary temptations indulge only in petty crimes and small lapses. H¯ ¯ is im izam did “many deeds of religious purification . .4 Muslim” (102). We are told that one Hak¯ b. it is a a different story. a God-ordained mission. other moral values are given the same twist. as another text puts it. came to Muhammad “with a lace or two laces and said: Messenger of All¯h. Another had¯ tells us that he is “freed one hundred slaves and donated one hundred camels” in this state (225). they become fruitful and are credited to his account. This means. They describe it as morally depraved and utterly lacking in any sense of a chivalry and generosity. thus automatically earning a place in Paradise as a martyr. FAITH (IM AN) Again. The Holy Prophet remarked: This is a lace of fire or two laces of fire” (210). Thanks to this approach. but to remove a paltry something from a looted treasure is moral depravity of a magnitude that deserves eternal fire. They are no longer wasted. But Muhammad saw “him in the Fire for the garment or cloak that he had stolen from the booty. I found them a on the day of Khaibar [name of a battle]. Ordinarily such good acts do not avail a polytheist.” On hearing this. there will be two columns of fire like unto these waiting for him in the hereafter. referring to this period of history as the “state of ignorance or barbarism” (jahil¯ iyya). But there are many ahad¯ which prove the contrary. and the whole complexion of his acts is changed. THEOLOGY DISTORTS MORALS No wonder that such a sectarian and preponderantly theological approach should now and then teach us topsy-turvy morals. but if he embraces Isl¯m. and the universal is turned into the sectarian. One of them who had presumably committed a similar act of pilfering. ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 1. but committing real enormities needs the aid of an ideology. a revelation. despoiling a whole people is meritorious if they are polytheists. A slave of Muhammad died in a holy war. but stealing booty once it is in the possession of Muslims is a mortal sin. a . that like the two pieces of lace the man had stolen. Muhammad assures Hak¯ : “you im have accepted Isl¯m with all the previous virtues that you had practised” (223). To rob a whole people is piety. . Muhammad tells his followers: “Abusing a Muslim is an outrage and fighting against him is unbelief” (122). THE PRE-MUSLIM ARABS Muslim theologians and writers are in the habit of painting a very dark picture of preIsl¯mic Arabia. in the state of ignorance” (222). some people were greatly perturbed. Everything good began with Muhammad.

I saw you in bulk amongst the dwellers of Hell. the Peoples of the Book. but should dwell more lovingly on the Divine within us.” the translator tells us (note 2967). God knows that man is weak and forgives his lapses and failure but supports his strength and multiplies his good. His past is forgotten a unless it is good. MUHAMMAD HAS THE LARGEST FOLLOWING ON THE DAY OF JUDGMENT Muhammad tells us that he “will have the greatest following on the Day of Resurrection” (283). Jesus spoke of “lusting with the eyes” regarding it as bad as lust in its more visible form.we should not harp too obsessively on our lapses. Muhammad says. and many things are permissible for him that are not permissible for a polytheist or even for a Jew or a Christian. his future is assured. And understandably so. I have seen none [like them] lacking in common sense and failing in religion but robbing the wisdom of the wise. he shall be but one of the denizens of Hell-Fire” (284). The less theistic but not less exalted yogic systems would put this idea somewhat differently and in more psychological terms . “the a . But Muhammad gave greater latitude to his followers: “Verily All¯h forgave my people a the evil promptings which arise within their hearts as long as they did not speak about them or did not act upon them” (230). “O womenfolk . Muhammad tells her: “You curse too much and are ungrateful to your spouses.5 EVIL THOUGHTS AND EVIL DEEDS A Muslim is All¯h’s prodigal son as well as His spoiled child. The Jews and Christians will suffer in hell not only for their own unbelief in Muhammad. .” a Muhammad tells us (6668). solve the problem of space in heaven: “Space in paradise would be provided by Christians and Jews being thrown into Hell-Fire. Another important segment of the infernal population is made up of women. The hellfire will be busy consuming the opponents of Muhammad.” When a woman asks him why it should be so.” The “proof of the lack of common sense” in them is the fact that in All¯h’s law promulgated by Muhammad himself. but does not affirm his belief in that with which I have been sent and dies in this state of disbelief. incidentally. “There would come people amongst the Muslim on the Day of Resurrection with as heavy sins as a mountain. This idea is expressed with less partiality and in more universal terms in the Indian spiritual tradition. they will also act as proxies for any Muslims who happen to be sent there. and there will be no one left for Paradise to receive except the Muslims. and All¯h would forgive them and he would place in their stead the Jews and the Christians. Muhammad tells us: “He who amongst the community of Jews and Christians hears about me. This would also. . for the hellfire is on his side.

(4) pregnancy. (7) her liability to be divorced and inability to divorce.that is one sign. In his Counsel for ¯ Kings. (12) the fact that she must not go out of the house unless accompanied by a near relative. is that “you spend some nights and days in which you do not offer prayer and in the month of Ramz¯n you do not observe fast” (142). (9) the fact that she must stay secluded in the house. (10) the fact that she must keep her head covered inside the house. (5) not having control over her own person. And when you see the shepherds of the black camels exult in buildings . did not observe some fasts “due to the regards for the Apostle of All¯h” (2550). deaf and dumb as the rulers of the earth . says that “All ah. a work in Hindi (author and publisher. a the very merit of women turns into its opposite: predestined damnation. a The arrival of the Last Day will be announced by many signs. ai ¯ punished women with eighteen things”: (1) menstruation. Deva ¯ Prakash. naked. it seems. (13) the fact that men take part in Friday and feast day prayers and funerals while women do not. the Prophet’s wife. (18) the fact that if their husbands divorce them they must observe a waiting period of three months or three menstrual periods before remarrying (Nas¯ ihat Al-Mul uk. but for a woman to have only one husband. as he tells them. a famous Arab divine of his time. Ratlam. and even her differential biological constitution and functions. that is the end of it according to Muhammad. But. 1058-1111). pp. is an indispensable a a prop of Muslim theology. India). or of “separation” (fasl). Women sometimes abstained a from voluntary fasts because the Prophet had commanded that it was more meritorious for them to do their duty by their husbands than to fast. The dreaded day (yaum). it pops up from practically every page of the Had¯ too. D. 2 THE DAY OF JUDGMENT The Day of Judgment (qiy¯mat). ’Aisha. (3) separation from parents and marriage to a stranger. the Last Day (yaumu’l-¯khir). is mentioned a a over three hundred times in the Qur¯n. Al-Ghazz¯l¯ (A. 164-165). (8) its being lawful for men to have four wives.that is one of the signs of Doom. . 1971. when you see barefooted. (15) the fact that merit has one thousand components. In short. “When you see a slave woman giving birth to her master . (14) disqualification for rulership and judgeship. when the poor and the deprived inherit the earth. He be praised. 2 A woman’s social and legal disabilities.6 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 1.that is one of the signs of Doom” (6). Paradise and Hell. and the proof of their failing in religion. London: University of Durham Publications. (16) the fact that if women are profligate they will be given only half as much torment as the rest of the community at the Resurrection Day. 3 Along with its attendant concepts. ¯ 3 All these synonyms are reproduced in Qur an Parichaya. colorfully described as the day of is “reckoning” (his¯b). while nine hundred and ninety-nine are attributable to men. only one of which is attributable to women. or of “standing up” (qiy¯mah). are interpreted in terms of her moral inferiority for which All ah has rightly punished her. FAITH (IM AN) evidence of two women is equal to one man”. (2) childbirth. (6) a lesser share in inheritance. (17) the fact that if their husbands die they must observe a waiting period of four months and ten days before remarrying. as shown by Mirza Hairat in his Mukaddma Tafs¯ iru’l Furqan. (11) the fact that two women’s testimony has to be set against the testimony of one man. In the Qur¯n. the word qiy¯mat appears seventy times and in a a addition has seventy-five synonyms.

The translator makes this statement clearer for us. and he will say: “I am in a position to do that.” They will go to Jesus.” He will reply: “I am not fit to do this.” They will be given a certain direction.” He will appeal to All¯h. of course. but he will reply: “I am not fit to do this. For example. and that the entry of Jews and Christians also is prohibited. it gives substance to his claim that among the apostles he “would have the largest following on the Day of Resurrection” (382). Thanks to his special role. He says: “The Apostles are dear to All¯h and their prayers are often granted. but you go to Jesus. Noah in a state of distress uttered: ‘My Lord! leave not any one of the disbelievers in the land’ (al-Qur¯n 71. How did Muhammad acquire this special intercessory power? Muhammad himself answers this question: “There is for every Apostle a prayer which is granted. On this day. Christians will be summoned and asked.7 There is a vivid account of the Day of Resurrection in eighty-two ah¯d¯ at the end a is of the “Book of Faith. and with it is decided their fate. the son of All¯h. will be thoroughly miserable on this day but even the Jews and the Christians . and his intercession will be granted a (377). and it is really hell. reserved my prayer for the intercession of my Ummah on the Day of Resurrection” (389). but every prophet showed haste in his prayer. If this is true. a But with every Apostle there is one request which may be called decisive with regard to his Ummah. O our Lord! Quench our thirst. for he is All¯h’s Interlocutor. a a im. and polytheists are strictly kept out. All¯h “will gather people. In many ah¯d¯ (381-396). “What did you worship?” When they reply. and All¯h will ask: a “Why don’t you go there to drink water?” When they go there. no other prophet or savior will avail except Muhammad. “seventy thousand persons of [my] Ummah would enter Paradise without rendering an account” (418). “I am not fit to do this.” They will go to Ibr¯h¯ but he will reply: a im.26).” Then they will come to Muhammad. the water is no more than a mirage.” They will go to a Moses. They will say: “Thirsty we are. Considering that unbelievers.the Peoples of the Book-will fare no better. “You tell a lie. Muhammad tells us that among the apostles he has a special a is intercessory power. People will come to Adam and say: “Intercede for your progeny. Muhammad a . for example. for he is the Spirit of All¯h and His Word. one wonders who will be the other half of the population of Paradise.” All¯h will tell them.” Muhammad tells us that on this day. I have. “Jesus. Unbelievers.” Then they will be asked what they want.” a a “bridge would be set over the hell. however.” and “I [Muhammad] and my Ummah would be the first to pass over it” (349). but go to Moses. infidels. and Muslims “would constitute half the inhabitants of Paradise” (427). All¯h did not take for Himself either a spouse a a a or a son. for “no Apostle amongst the Apostles has been testified as I have been testified” (383). they will find that they have been misguided. a you better go to Muhammad. and he will reply: “I am not fit to do this. Then they will “fall into the Fire” and perish (352). but go to Ibr¯h¯ for he is the friend of All¯h.

my father and your father are in the Fire” (398). FAITH (IM AN) reserved his prayer for the Day of Resurrection and he would use it for the salvation of the believers” (note 412). but this kind of cursing is quite in Muhammad’s line. We have no means of knowing about the curse of Noah. For example. but needst not go out of your way to save them. after it had been known to them that they were the denizens of Hell” (9:113). About him. a true believer should not even seek blessing on their behalf. Ab¯ T¯lib. Muhammad will not intercede even when he knows that no other intercession would avail: “Thou shalt not damn thy enemies. O All¯h! curse Lihy¯n. “Behold! the posterity of my fathers .” THE PROPHET’S FATHER AND UNCLES We must admit. Would that be of any avail to him? He said: it would be of no avail to him” (416). when the disbelievers are being hurled into the Fire. for they disobeyed All¯h and His Messenger” (1428). On the Day of Resurrection. fed the poor. a a a Usayya. the Prophet’s young wife. their good works will not avail them. But he was somewhat more kind to his uncle.” he himself repudiated all ties with the generations of his forefathers and their posterity. reports: “I said: Messenger of All¯h. he told a questioner: “Verily. . . . ’Aisha. those who believed in All¯h to the exclusion of All¯t and ’Uzz¯. look at his curse against several tribes: “O All¯h! a trample severely Muzar and cause them a famine . and a a a in his own apostleship. therefore. even though they were their kith and kin. Would you call that much of a relief? Though Muhammad took pride in “establishing ties of relationship. that Muhammad was consistent.” declares Muhammad (417). Muhammad tells us: “I found him in the lowest part of the Fire and I brought him to the shallow part” (409). Regarding his father. . Muhammad assures us that “among the inhabitants of the Fire Ab¯ T¯lib would u a have the least suffering. Ri’l Zakw¯n. the son of Jud’¯n [a relation of hers and one of the a a leaders of the Quraish] established ties of relationship. God’s mind is made up with regard to the polytheists. a In any case. are not my friends. and he would be wearing two shoes of Fire which would boil his brain” (413). however. As the Qur¯n says: “It is not meet for the Prophet a and for those who believe.8 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 1. . But even this shallowest part must have been roasting the poor uncle. u a who brought him up and protected him but who did not accept his religion. that they should beg pardon for the polytheists. He reserved his power for saving his ummah. He did not use it to save even his dearest and nearest ones like his father and uncle.

” These are quite important in Isl¯mic lore.one prayer will now count for ten . He turned Jesus into a muj¯hid (crusader) of his entourage. Jesus in the second. but Muhammad’s Companions and later on most Muslim scholars believe that the journey or ascension (mi’r¯j) was a physical. it was not a dream! For “had it been only a dream. of heaven. JESUS Muhammad had a belief of a sort in Jesus. his opinion of Jesus does not amount to much. Adam he met in the first heaven. no more than a pale copy of Muhammad. So nothing was really lost in efficacy. and five will do the work of fifty. and Abraham in the seventh.” Muhammad proclaims a (287).9 MUHAMMAD’S NIGHT JOURNEY TO HEAVEN Various other matters. we find it was more a motivated belief. kill swine. But our translator argues that precisely because it was not believed.for “what has been said will not be changed” (313). along with his belief in the apostleship of Moses and Abraham. Many in his day scoffed at Muhammad and called his journey a dream. Muhammad made a representation to All¯h a and the number was reduced to five. meant partly to prove his own apostolic pedigree. “Five and at the same time fifty” . How? The translator explains: “Cross is a symbol of Christianity. such as Muhammad’s night journey to Jerusalem. The whole of the human race would accept Isl¯m and there would be no zimm¯ left. is often cited as a proof of Muhammad’s liberal and catholic outlook. Jesus will sweep out of existence this dirty and loathsome animal. But on the advice of Moses. Jesus is regarded as a just Judge. The more mystic-minded explain this journey spiritually. who enjoined on the Muslims fifty a prayers a day. larger than a donkey but a smaller than a mule. this belief. Isl¯m is the d¯ (religion) of All¯h and no a in a other religion is acceptable to him. Jesus will break this symbol after the advent of Muhammad. there would have been no occasion for such a reaction about it. the flesh of the swine is a favorite dish of the Christians. Similarly. on the way meeting different apostles. When Jesus returns a in the Second Coming. riding on al-Bar¯q. he will be waging war against the Christians as well as others: “The son of Mary will soon descend among you as a just judge. and the coming of Dajj¯l and Jesus before the Day of Resurrection. In fact. He will break crosses.” Muhammad was taken to the Temple in Jerusalem and from there to the different regions. Moses in the sixth. In any case. and abolish jizy¯. Then he met All¯h. and partly to win converts from among the Jews and the Christians. “an animal white and long. a . or “circles” (as Dante called them). But if we look at the matter closely. and thus a is jizy¯ would be automatically abolished” (notes 289-290). are also discussed in the “Book of a Faith. Visions like this can flit across the imagination of any man at any time” (note 325). a One night.

For.10 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 1. “the Shar¯ i’ah of all the earlier prophets stands abrogated with the advent of Muhammad’s Apostleship. as the translator explains. Jesus will. FAITH (IM AN) but this only means that he will judge according to the shar¯ i’ah of Muhammad. therefore. a . judge according to the law of Isl¯m” (note 288).

cleansing the nose and a mouth with water (istinsh¯q). (4) fitra. a a menses (hayz). (3) tayammum. including acts like the use of the toothpick (misw¯k). and abstersion (istinj¯) with water or dry earth or a piece a a of stone after evacuation and urination. Some broad injunctions on the subject of purification are given in the Qur¯n (e. ABLUTION (Wuz u) ¯ Muhammad emphasizes the need for bodily cleanliness. the minor purification with dust in a the place of water. He 11 .” but interpreted as customs of the previous prophets. but they acquire fullness from the practice of the Prophet. Muhammad was a Unitarian in his theology but a Trinitarian in his ablution. that must be performed before reciting the statutory daily prayers.Chapter 2 Purification (Tah¯rah) a The next book is the “Book of Purification”. ¯ minor ablution of the limbs of the body. total ablution of the whole body after the following acts which make a person junub. prescribed before each of the five daily prayers and omitted only if the worshipper is sure that he has not been polluted in any way since the last ablution. the major. defecation. (5) tath¯ the purification of objects which have ir.g. become ritualistically unclean. It relates not to inner purity but to certain acts of cleanliness. or impure: coitus (jim¯). He tells his followers that “cleanliness is half of faith” (432) and that their prayer will not be accepted in a state of impurity till they “perform ablution” (435). and abstersion. physical and ritualistic. nocturnal pollution (ihtil¯m). literally “nature. But impurity here has a strictly ritualistic meaning. It deals with such matters as ablution. and childbirth (nif¯s). (2) ghusl. The main topics discussed in Muslim fiqh (canon law) under this heading are: (1) wuz u.. a verses 4:43 and 5:6).

then washed his left foot. For the a identification of faces.I would have ordered them to use the toothpick at every time of prayer. He then washed his face three times. then washed his right foot up to the ankle three times. The translator provides the rationale for this injunction: “Isl¯m created a new brotherhood on the basis of belief and good conduct . so that they may be distinguished from the non-Muslims who grow a moustache and shave beard” (note 471). Muhammad says: “When any one of you awakes from sleep . According to Muslim canon scholars. . this is the most complete of the ablutions performed for prayer. THE FIVE ACTS (Fitra) There are nine ah¯d¯ (495-503) on five acts natural to man and proper to Isl¯m: a is a circumcision.” and so on. “Were it not that I might overburden the believers . The next had¯ substitutes the word is ‘fire-worshippers’ for ‘polytheists’. cutting the nails. . the Muslims have been ordered to trim the moustache and wear the beard. . . About the moustache and the beard. . . trim closely the moustache and grow beard” (500). PURIFICATION (TAHARAH) performed his ablution like this: “He washed his hands thrice. There are twenty-one ah¯d¯ repeating a is Muhammad’s practice and thought on the subject as given above (436-457). and offered two rak’ahs [sections] of prayer . then washed his left arm like that.” he said (487). plucking the hair under the armpits. then wiped his head. Muhammad said that “he who performs ablution like this ablution of mine .12 ¯ CHAPTER 2. CLEANSING THE NOSE The nose should be properly cleansed. shaving the pubes. . for the devil spends the night in the interior of one’s nose” (462). This became the standard ablution. and clipping the moustache. He then rinsed his mouth and cleaned his nose three times. . he must clean his nose three times. the Prophet said: “Act against the polytheists. . then washed his right arm up to the elbow three times. all his previous sins are expiated” (436). CLEANING THE TEETH (Misw¯k) a Muhammad loved toothpicks and used them often. .

” nor should men lie together “under one covering” (667). In this connection. There is a story explaining why the use of bones and dung is forbidden. in wearing shoes. toward the mosque at Mecca] at the time of excretion or urination. and in performing ablution” (515). while taking his bath. Cleansing after excretion must be done an “odd number of times” (460)..” The Jews then had a chance to see Moses’ private parts. He forbids his followers “to face the qibla [i. Muhammad once spent a night with jinns (genii) reciting the Qur¯n to them. he must not touch the penis with his right hand” (512). DON’T EXPOSE YOUR PRIVATE PARTS Muhammad says that “a man should not see the private part of another man. i. ’Aisha tells us that the “Messenger of All¯h loved to start from the right-hand side in a his every act.e. my clothes.. my clothes. ¯ TATH IR Muhammad enjoins that “when the dog licks the utensil. When they asked him about their provision of food. he also tells us that the Jews used to take their baths naked and looked at each other’s private parts. O stone. Moses put his clothes on a rock. They said he refrained from exposing his private parts because he suffered from scrotal hernia. but the rock moved away. “Moses ran after it crying: O stone. Once. or cleansing with right hand or with less than three pebbles” (504). but Moses took his bath alone.13 BODILY FUNCTIONS Now Muhammad takes us to the toilet. wash it seven times. But God vindicated him. and the dung of the camels is fodder for your animals. He also tells his followers: “When anyone amongst you enters the privy. and said: “By All¯h. in combing. and one must not use “dung or bone” (505) for this purpose. he told them: a “Every bone on which the name of All¯h is recited is your provision. a .e.” He therefore told his followers: “Don’t perform istinj¯ with these things for these a are the food of your brothers” (903). and rub it with earth the eighth time” (551). The time it will fall a in your hand it would be covered with flesh. Instead of feeling ashamed for not following their leader’s example the Jews taunted him. Moses does not suffer from any ailment” (669).

Once there was a controversy on this point between some muh¯jirs (“Emigrants” or a “Refugees”) and some ans¯rs (“Helpers”).” She said: “Had you found anything you should have washed it. But when there is a seminal emission “bath becomes obligatory” (674). The man said yes.” Then she reported what Muhammad had said on the subject: “When anyone sits amidst fore parts of the woman. “he should wash the secretion of his wife. “I saw in a dream what a sleeper sees. She asked the guest: “What prompted you to act like this with your clothes?” He replied. pointing to ’Aisha. The prophet said: When you made haste and semen is not emitted. a asking: “What makes a bath obligatory for a person?” She answered: “You have come across one well-informed. Muhammad said: perhaps we put you to haste. wiping your hands and feet and forehead with earth. a man asked Muhammad whether a bath is obligatory for one who parts from intercourse with his wife without having had an orgasm. And on yet another occasion. and that should be as good as ablution with water. i. Next day he dipped his clothes in water for washing. who was sitting by him. and then went out for a prayer in that very garment and I saw the mark of washing on it” (570). PURIFICATION (TAHARAH) SOILED CLOTHES ’Aisha tells us that the “Messenger of All¯h washed the semen. The Prophet. A maidservant observed this and informed ’Aisha. The translator . In another had ¯ Muhammad says that when a man leaves his wife in the midst of an intercourse without is. but it also narrates some material of Freudian significance.. bathing is not obligatory for you.14 ¯ CHAPTER 2. “He a came out and water was trickling down from his head.” Then ’Aisha asked him: “Did you find any mark of fluid on your clothes?” He said: “No. you can take to tayammum. and the circumcised parts touch each other a bath becomes obligatory” (684). One of them came to ’Aisha for clarification. In case I found that semen on the garment of the Messenger of All¯h dried a up. A is guest who was staying at ’Aisha’s house had a nocturnal seminal emission. TAYAMMUM If water is not available. replied: “I and she do it and then take a bath” (685).e. and then perform ablution and offer prayer” (677). BATHING AFTER A SEMINAL EMISSION There are a dozen ah¯d¯ (674-685) on the subject of bathing after a seminal emission. a is Once Muhammad called out an ans¯r who was in the midst of sexual intercourse. There is another had¯ of similar import. having experienced orgasm. but ablution is binding” (676). I scratched it off with my nails” (572).

and you find no water. But perhaps approach here means to have sexual intercourse. “And if you be ailing or on a journey or one comes from the privy. for except for coitus all . or you have touched women. Say: They are a hurt and a pollution. but as for myself I rolled in dust and said prayer. . a One had¯ tells us of the words of ’Amm¯r to ’Umar: “Do you remember. and when it was referred to the Apostle. “The Messenger of All¯h took a meat of goat’s shoulder and offered prayer and did not perform ablution” (689). He says that “the main purpose behind ablution and bathing is a religious one and the hygienic one is a matter of secondary importance . and the people reminded him about ablution. MENSTRUATION (Haiz) The third book is on menstruation. some cross-reference is inevitable. “The Apostle of All¯h came out of the privy. This chapter too. On the subject of menstruation. does not have very much to say on menstruation as such but a great deal on ritualistic ablution and bathing after sexual intercourse. in some respects. to retain the spiritual value of ablution as a means of directing us from the mundane activities of life and directing us to the presence of the Lord” (note 579). in fact. then betake yourself to clean earth and wipe your faces and your hands therewith” (Qur¯n 4:43).15 explains why. and do not approach them until they are clean” (2:222). . Ablution is necessary after leaving the privy if you are going to pray but not if you are going to eat. . There is a verse in the Qur¯n and eight ah¯d¯ a a is (714-721) on this subject. All¯h has directed a us to perform tayammum in case water is not available . and he was presented with a some food. . O Commander is a of the Faithful. But later on this command was abrogated. he said: ‘It was enough for you to strike the ground with your hands and then blow the dust and then wipe your face and palms’ ” (718). The Qur¯n uses rather a a strong language on the subject: “They ask thee concerning women’s courses. Muhammad’s practice appears. for both have to do with ritualistic purity. different from what was enjoined by the revelation in the Qur¯n. but he said: Am I to say prayer that I should perform ablution?” (725). Therefore. . FOOD AND ABLUTION Muhammad enjoined that “ablution is obligatory for one who takes anything touched by fire” (686). The subjects of this book and the previous one overlap. So keep away from women in their course. when I and you were in a military detachment and we had had a seminal emission and did not find water for taking bath and you did not say prayer.

The commentator explains that this was done “so that the soul of man may be transported from the urges of the flesh to its original spiritual domain” (note 511). this question to Muhammad directly. and drink. Some Muslims wanted to go whole hog in their opposition to Jewish practice and suggested to Muhammad that he should permit sexual intercourse too since the Jews forbade it. the Messenger of All¯h asked her to tie a waist-wrapper over her and then a embraced her” (577). The Messenger of All¯h said to him: Perform ablution. and I would eat flesh from a bone when I was menstruating. Maim¯na tells us: “The Messenger of Allu ah used to lie with me when I menstruated. and recite the Qur¯n” (591). For example. ’Aisha reports: “The Messenger of All¯h would a recline in my lap when I was menstruating. But Muhammad did not go that far. a a Carrying the same sexual overtones taught by Freud. Muhammad enjoined the same on his followers. The same advice was conveyed to ’Al¯ who as his son-in-law was shy in putting i. or scriptural studies. SEXUAL POLLUTION AND ABLUTION ’Aisha reports: “Whenever the Messenger of All¯h had sexual intercourse and intended a to eat or sleep. The Prophet would also allow ’Aisha to comb his hair when she was menstruating and he was supposed to be observing i’tik¯f. All this was opposed to the Jewish practice. then hand it over to the Apostle and he would put his mouth where mine had been” (590). besides throwing interesting sidelights on some of a is the more intimate habits of the Prophet. PURIFICATION (TAHARAH) other contacts were permitted by the Prophet. and I washed it in the state that I was a menstruating. and there was a cloth between me and him” ¯ (580). Other ah¯d¯ make the same point. wash your sexual organ and then go to sleep” a (602). “The Messenger of All¯h put out from the mosque his head for me as he a a was in i’tik¯f [her room opened on the mosque]. which forbade not only sexual intercourse but also kissing and all other forms of physical contact during menstruation. His problem was mazi (prostatic fluid) and not man . then I would hand over the vessel to the Apostle and he would put his mouth where mine had been. especially during the last ten days of the month of Ramz¯n. ’Aisha again reports: “I would drink when I was menstruating. Rather an unlikely a place for sv¯dhy¯ya. he performed the ablution of prayer” (598).” ’Aisha reports (584). technically segregating oneself and staying in a a mosque for a certain number of days. Umm Salama reports the same (581). ’Umar once went to the Prophet and told him that “he became junbi [unclean] during the night. ’Aisha says: “When anyone amongst us menstruated.16 ¯ CHAPTER 2.

a believers (603). SINGLE BATH FOR MULTIPLE COITUS Unlike ablution. BATH (Ghusl) For the exercise of prayer. . when she sees the liquid [vaginal secretion]. The translator explains: “The holy prophet is did not take a bath after every intercourse. and sometimes he performed ablution only. “Ablution is obligatory in such a case.17 ¯ (semen). a There are over two dozen ah¯d¯ on the subject of Muhammad’s own custom in this a is regard. coitus. . This practice is derived from the Qur¯nic verse: “If you are polluted. “sometimes he took a bath and then slept. (605). i Ablution was also necessary if one wanted to repeat the intercourse. . “You humiliated the women. then purify yourselves” (5:6). One Umm Sulaim went to Muhammad and asked him: “Is bathing necessary for a woman when she has a sexual dream?” Muhammad replied: “Yes. The same obligation lay on women. puerperium. Anas reports that “the Messenger of All¯h used to have sexual intercourse with his wives with a a single bath” (606). Muhammad’s practice was that after the sexual intercourse. or in the colorful language of Tirmiz¯ “with one bath.” Muhammad’s wives were scandalized when they learned that Umm Sulaim had put a question to the Prophet which suggested that a woman too could have a sexual dream. the whole body must be washed to absolve it from uncleanliness after certain acts: menses. ” (616). When ’Aisha reported this to the narrator of this had¯ his pious reaction was: “Praise be to All¯h Who has made things easy” for the is. had¯ 124). there should be an ablution” u is. he then poured water with his right hand on his left hand and washed his private parts . he a first washed his hands. I. the Apostle i: walked over all his women” (vol. ’Aisha says: “When All¯h’s Messenger bathed because of sexual intercourse. and pollutio nocturna. 611). the bath need not be repeated after each act of intercourse. the narrator of this had¯ “between two acts.” postponing the bath till the end of the night before the morning prayer. In the words of Ab¯ Bakr.” they told her (610. he simply performed ablution and took a bath at the end” (note 514).” he was told (593).

PURIFICATION (TAHARAH) BATHING TOGETHER Many ah¯d¯ narrate how the Prophet and his wives used to bathe together after sexual a is intercourse. i: i! to a mosque in a state of sexual defilement” (Tirmiz¯ vol. also report that they u and Muhammad took their baths together (581. And I and he [the Prophet] took a bath from the same vessel” (625). had¯ 108). The translator feels that the practice of the Prophet needs defense from the likely attacks of hostile critics. He had his Apostle’s privilege. moreover. He tells us that this bath was quite a modest act. in this case. u sa’¯ Muhammad told ’Al¯ “O ’Al¯ It is not lawful for anyone except me and thee to go id. According to a had¯ quoted by Tirmiz¯ ’Aisha reports: “On is i. and though the Prophet and his wives on occasion took a bath from the same vessel. I ‘wrapped’ him up round me even though I myself had not taken bath [and was therefore in a state of impurity]” (vol. I. II. is Notwithstanding all these rules and regulations. ’Aisha reports: “The Messenger of All¯h took a bath from the vessel [which a contained 15 to 16 pounds of water]. had¯ 1584). which. and thus there was no question of their seeing each other’s bodies (note 538). Muhammad was not bound by them. Two other wives of Muhammad.18 ¯ CHAPTER 2. There were no glaring lights. She reports the same idea with more details in another had¯ “I and is: the Messenger of All¯h took a bath from one vessel and our hands alternated into it in the a state that we had sexual intercourse” (629). 631). i. is . Umm Salama and Maim¯na. CONSERVING BODY HEAT If one lost too much body heat during the bath. it could be regained by lying again in the embrace of one’s wife. he shared with ’Al¯ According to Ab¯ i. many occasions it happened that the apostle of All¯h came back to me after the bath of a purification with the intention of warming up. they took their bath in pitch darkness. it was not a tub-bath where a couple sit together.

one can see that they all relate to the externals: az¯n (the call to prayer). as the Jews did. one Guide. But in all these pages. It is the longest. the a merits of prayers at different times. As there is one All¯h. one looks in vain for any reference is to such problems as self-exploration and self-knowledge. the place of im¯m in the system of prayers. postures like bowing. the system of the human voice was introduced. prostrating and rising.398 ah¯d a a ¯ divided into 203 chapters. As a means of calling people to prayer at fixed times. There is not even a remote hint of different men endowed with different natures taking different paths toward a divinity differently figured. the prayer for protection against windstorms and other calamities. All these methods were ruled out. problems of enduring concern for the spirituality of the Indian tradition. and so on. there is also one Prayer. some suggested using a bell. people a forgathered in the mosque without knowing when they were to pray. the Christians. Umm Makt¯m. caught and fixed in a a single formula. ¯ AZAN We are told how the institution of az¯n began. with 1. Some even suggested that a fire should be lighted. the a number and times of the different prayers. 19 . To make the Muslim practice different from that of the Jews. and ’Abdullah b. In the beginning. 741). as the Christians did. a who was very loud-throated. in Medina. and the Fireworshippers. others a horn. u were the first mu’azzin (callers) (735. Bil¯l. the prayer for rain. the prayer relating to the dead. From the titles of the 203 chapters this book contains. one Book. 737. who later became blind.Chapter 3 Prayer (Sal¯t) a The fourth book is the “Book of Prayer” (Sal¯t).

PRAYER (SAL AT) Az¯n is very effective. “The Messenger of All¯h used to attack the enemy when it was a dawn. it is accompanied by many bodily movements. so if he heard an Az¯n. they should repeat what he says and invoke blessings on Muhammad. . with Muhammad as Messenger. . Another saw his “hands lifted . This the a a commentator finds greatly virtuous in Muhammad. “The greatest contribution made by the Holy Prophet in the sphere of warfare is that he elevated it from the surface of reckless murder or slaughter to the level of humanized struggle for the uprooting of evil in society. POSTURE DURING PRAYER Muslim prayer is not carried on in one tranquil posture. and his wives and his offspring . it meant that everything was a not kufr (infidelity). In a variation on this theme. He would listen to the Az¯n. and with Isl¯m as a a ¯ [religion] his sins would be forgiven” (749). One narrator saw a is Muhammad “raising his hands opposite the shoulders at the time of beginning the prayer and before bowing down and after coming back to the erect position after bowing. “Apostle of All¯h. They should “beg from All¯h al-Was¯ for me. He who blesses me once. “When Satan hears the call to prayer. 808). how should we bless you?” Muhammad is asked. therefore. If any one who asks that I be given the Was¯ he a ila. He replies: “O All¯h! a a bless Muhammad. will be assured of my intercession. d in In seeking blessings for himself. did not allow his Companions to take the enemy unawares under the cover of darkness of night” (note 600). but he did not raise them between two prostrations” (758). which is a rank in Paradise a ila fitting for only one of All¯h’s servants. he runs away to a distance a like that of Rauh¯. he stopped” (745). These have been codified on the basis of the practice and precepts of Muhammad.” a distance of 36 miles from Medina (751). All¯h would a bless him ten times” (807. Muhammad does not forget his wives and progeny. Where it was heard. BLESSINGS FOR MUHAMMAD When men hear the mu’azzin.20 ¯ CHAPTER 3. a ATTACKS ON NON-MUSLIMS Az¯n became a great indicator. sitting or standing. There are many ah¯d¯ on the subject. The Holy Prophet. if a man who hears a caller responds by testifying that he is “satisfied with All¯h as my Lord.” says Muhammad (747).

It should be led by an im¯m. . 1057). “When he prostrates.” The seven bones are: “The hands. . and taking out from my tongue what I was reciting” (783). you should also rise up. palm to palm. otherwise their eyes would be snatched away” (863). He also forbids them to bow and prostrate themselves ahead of the im¯m: “Does the man a who lifts his head before the im¯m not fear that All¯h may change his face into that of a a an ass?” (860). In the beginning. one of them should lead them” (1417). Muhammad was commanded by All¯h that “he should prostrate on the seven bones a and he was forbidden to fold back the hair and clothing. when Muhammad was trying to cultivate the Jews.” he tells them (817). Also. and then lifted them . when there is a valid reason for doing so. Another precaution: “People should avoid lifting their eyes towards the sky while supplicating in prayer.” He also saw that the Prophet “then wrapped his hands in his cloth and placed his right hand over his left hand. . he prostrated between the two palms” (792). THE FIRST MOSQUE: FACING THE QIBLA Somebody asked Muhammad which was the mosque “first set up on the earth. just as Muhammad appointed Ab¯ u Bakr during his last illness (832-844). But he asked his followers to “observe moderation in prostration” and not to stretch out [their] forearms on the ground like a dog” (997). the knees. But later on this practice was abrogated and the followers were “commanded to place them [hands] on the knees” (1086-1092). ¯ THE IM AM Muslim prayer is mostly group prayer. When someone once a did this. you a should also prostrate. he prayed facing . and then to put them between one’s thighs. Muhammad a enjoins that “when there are three persons. And when he was about to bow down. Originally the practice had been to put one’s hands together. Muhammad exhorts his followers to follow their im¯m.” He answered that it was the Ka’ba. And when prostrated. . when-he rises up.21 opposite to ears. he brought out his hands from the cloth. The second one was the great mosque in Jerusalem (1056. those who are being led in prayer are required to keep pace with the im¯m and are forbidden to recite so loudly as to compete with him. and the extremities of the feet and the forehead” (991). The im¯m is authorized to appoint anyone as a his deputy. Muhammad told him: “I felt as if [you were] disputing with me .

” adds Ab¯ Huraira.” says Muhammad. One tradition says: “We prayed with the Messenger of All¯h towards Bait-ul-Maqdis for a sixteen months or seventeen months. He does not deny that the Jews and the Christians also had their prophets but adds: “I have been given superiority over the other prophets in six respects: I have been given words which are concise but comprehensive in meaning.22 ¯ CHAPTER 3. The translator assures us that “this was a change of far-reaching importance . Some people were praying their dawn prayer and had recited one rak’ah. is which other prophets lack (1058). This resulted from Muhammad’s terroristic methods: his assassinations and killings and the constant marauding raids by the Muslims. 2 u is That is. PRAYER (SAL AT) their temple in Jerusalem. For example. Muhammad makes some interesting disclosures. a We see here that European imperialism with all its rationalizations and pretensions was anticipated by Isl¯mic imperialism by a thousand years. It strengthened the loyalty of the Muslims to Isl¯m and the Prophet” (note 732). Then we were made to change our direction towards the Ka’ba” (1072). 1 . Another had¯ mentions Muhammad’s power of “intercession” on the Day of Judgment. In Isl¯m we find all the ideological a a ingredients of imperialism in any age: a divine or moral sanction for the exploitation of the barbarians or heathens or polytheists. they themselves regarded as the wards and special responsibility (zimma) of the civilizing masters. my enemies hold me in such terror and awe that they surrender without fighting. . . and while I was asleep I was brought the keys of the treasures of the earth. Immediately 1 . . spoils have been made lawful to me . “They turned towards the new qibla in that very state” (1075). foe or friend. their land considered as a lebensraum or held as a mandate. the direction (qibla) was changed to Mecca. . He lived long enough (surviving Muhammad by twenty-five years) to see u the nascent Muslim state grow into an empire and the tribute pour into the coffers of Medina. . The whole earth is also made a “mosque” for him and given to him as a legitimate place of prayer for him and his (1058). and the line of prophets is closed with me” (1062). . This wealth the followers of the Apostle “are now busy in getting them. I have been helped by terror (in the hearts of the enemies). It must a have made a strong appeal to Arab nationalism. But later on. . The followers had no difficulty and adjusted to the new change with alacrity. the narrator of this had¯ (1063). Other ah¯d¯ mention other points. “I have been helped a is by terror. the beheading of eight hundred members of the tribe of Quraiza in cold blood in the market of Medina must have sent a chill of terror down the spine of everyone. I have been sent to all mankind. ¯ ALLAH ALLOWS MUHAMMAD TERROR AND WAR BOOTY While giving his opinion of the first mosques. Someone told them that the qibla had been changed. . 2 Ab¯ Huraira should know. This is the idea of the world as a “mandated territory” bestowed on the believers by All¯h.

for All¯h is in front of him when he is engaged in prayer” a (1116). the translator says: “The fact is that the Holy Prophet deemed it preferable for women to say their prayers within the four walls of their houses or in the nearest mosque” (note 668).000 dirhams a year. The translator explains that this had¯ relates to a period when is the Companions were very poor and could not afford proper clothing. refer to the T ar¯ Tabar¯ ¯ ikh i. According to another tradition. .000 dirhams. he “forbade spitting on the right side or in front. The instruction was meant to give them time to adjust their clothing before the women lifted their heads (had¯ 883 and note 665). but clothes having designs and markings on them are distracting and should be avoided (1131-1133). 2. but it is permissible to spit on the left side or under the left foot” (1118). after Muhammad’s death during the two years of Ab¯ Bakr’s caliphate. DOS AND DON’TS There are many dos and don’ts. 4.000 to 9. Officers of the Arab occupation armies in the different cantonment areas of the empire received yearly from 6. 476-479. They were also told not to precede men in lifting their heads from prostration. and their children. each of the more than three hundred veterans of the Battle of Badr. thanks to the enormous revenues received from the outlying colonial regions in the neighborhood of the Arabian peninsula. established by ¯ ’Umar specified that each of Muhammad’s widows was to receive 12.23 WOMEN AND MOSQUES Women can go to the mosque but they “should not apply perfume” (893).000 dirhams a year. Every Muslim had a a place in this classification. to wear shoes while praying is permissible (1129-1130). but Muhammad found their odors a “repugnant” (1149) and therefore forbade coming to the mosque after eating them.000 dirhams a year. is Muhammad commanded the believers to “take out unmarried women and purdahobserving ladies for ’Id prayers. 5. or Civil List. the share of every Meccan and u Medinan Muslim in the tithes received was only 9 dirhams for the first year and 20 dirhams for the next year. To eat onion or garlic is not har¯m (forbidden). II. But within two decades everything changed. The Prophet commanded the believer that while praying “he should not spit in front of him. everyone who had converted to Isl¯m before that date. The diw an. a privilege not denied to men who can afford it. For a fuller account of the Civil List. pp. “for the angels are harmed by the same things as men” (1145). For example. and he commanded the menstruating women to remain away from the place of worship of the Muslims” (1932).000 dirhams a year. But in a footnote explaining the standpoint of the Isl¯mic shar¯ a i’ah with regard to women joining men in prayer. vol.. and every boy born in these military quarters received from his birth 100 dirhams annually.

’Aisha reports that when the Prophet “was about to breathe his last . they break away to it and leave you standing” (1877. People left the Prophet and flocked toward the caravan. one should first take food. Muslims were fortunate to have Friday as their day. PRAYER IN TIME OF DANGER According to Muslim jurists. “On it Adam was created. One Friday.” says Muhammad (1134). Qur¯n a 62:11). First things first. PRAYER (SAL AT) CURSE ON THE JEWS It is meritorious to build a mosque. “When the supper is brought and prayer begins. but All¯h diverted those who were before us from it” (1863). All¯h would a a build for him a house in Paradise” (1034). one group prays while the other one fights (1824-1831). . for “he who builds a mosque for All¯h. the day prescribed by All¯h Himself for them. when the Prophet was delivering a sermon. DINNER BEFORE PRAYER This rule may seem to lack piety but in some ways it is realistic. a An interesting story is reported in this connection. he uncovered his face and said in this very state: ‘Let there be curse upon the Jews and the Christians that they have taken the graves of their Apostles as places of worship’ ” (1082). a caravan with merchandise from Syria arrived. For example.” While the Jews and the Christians observe Saturday and Sunday as their respective days. “We were guided a aright to Friday. The believer is told to prefer supper to prayer.” they “shall be the first on the Day of Resurrection.24 ¯ CHAPTER 3. Every ummah was given the Book before the Muslims. But though Muslims “are the last. during a war. Then this verse was revealed: “And when they see merchandise or sport. . FRIDAY PRAYER Friday is a special day. there are different forms of prayer for sixteen specific dangerous situations. on it he was made to enter Paradise. . But it is forbidden to build mosques on graves and to decorate them with pictures. on it he was expelled from heaven” (1856).

On the same occasion. with ’Aisha’s head resting on his shoulder. he replied: “All¯h’s enemy Ibl¯ came with a flame of fire to put it in my face. but the sufi schools of Isl¯m.’ then he stretched out his hand a as though he was taking hold of something. his voice a rose. I swear by All¯h that had it not been for the supplication of my brother Sulaim¯n he would have a a been bound.25 MUHAMMAD AS A PREACHER J¯bir b. was watching some Abyssinians engage in a mock armed fight. ’Abdullah draws for us a pen-portrait of Muhammad delivering a sermon. MUSIC.’ and he would join his forefinger and middle finger (just as there is no other finger between these two. Then came Ab¯ Bakr and he scolded me and said: Oh! this musical u instrument of the devil in the house of the Messenger of All¯h. . In a large measure he was indulging his child-wife ’Aisha.” a is But even though cursed. DANCE. leave them alone” (1946). But Muhammad told him: “ ’Umar.” When asked to throw light on this unusual behavior. He lay down on the bed and turned a away his face. similarly there will be no new Prophet between Muhammad and the Day of Resurrection) and would further say: ‘The best of the speech is embodied in the Book of All¯h. and it was the day of Id” (1942). make the most of this had¯ a is. One report says: “Allah’s Messenger stood up [to pray] and we heard him say: ‘I seek refuge in All¯h from thee. And when he became unattentive I hinted them [the girls] and they went out. in which music plays an important role.’ He would also say: ‘The Last Hour and I have been sent like these two. Muhammad added: “Ab¯ Bakr. “Thereafter. every people have a festival and it is our festival [so let them play on]” (1938). and his anger increased so that he was like one giving a warning against the enemy and saying: ‘The enemy has made a morning attack on you and in the evening too. Muhammad. and every innovation is error’ ” (1885). he did not retreat. I meant to seize him. And the most evil affairs are their innovations. ’Umar came and wanted to drive them away by throwing pebbles at them. and made an object of sport for the children of Medina” (1106). u This is the only had¯ that can be construed as an instance of Muhammad’s approving is of music. He a reports: “When All¯h’s Messenger delivered the sermon. The Messenger of All¯h a a turned towards him and said: Leave them alone.’ ¯ a Then said: ‘I curse thee with All¯h’s curse three times. AND SPORTS ’Aisha reports: “The Messenger of All¯h came in my apartment while there were two a girls with me singing the song of the Battle of Bu’¯s. his eyes became red. and the a best of guidance is the guidance given by Muhammad. There are other eyewitness accounts of Muhammad’s sermons.

However. I went to u the Apostle of All¯h and said: Messenger of All¯h. He told me to a a u recite: ‘O All¯h! forgive me and him [Ab¯ Salama] and give me a better substitute than a u he.26 ¯ CHAPTER 3. Weeping over the dying Sa’d b. The dying must be treated to a bit of theology. u He died at Uhud. to whom she had borne many children. Muhammad had no friendly eye for nature. he said: “All¯h does not punish for the tears that the eye sheds or the grief a a . ’Aisha tells us: “Whenever the wind was stormy. because “angels may say amen to whatever you say. Muhammad himself wept over the death of his loyal followers.’ So I said this. Muhammad deals with the problem with the help of an incantation. He regarded clouds and winds with terror. u Umm Salama was the widow of Ab¯ Salama. prayers for protection against windstorms or terrible dark clouds. He also taught haste in the disposal of dead bodies.” Umm Salama tells us: “When Ab¯ Salama died. and Muhammad married her four months later. prayers to be recited at the time of a solar eclipse (1966-1972). who is better for me than a him [Ab¯ Salama]” (2002).” says a the Prophet (1996).’ to those who are dying. Ab¯ Salama has died. She further says: “I asked him the reason of this anxiety and he said: I was afraid that it might be a calamity that might fall on my Ummah” (1961). “Exhort to recite. “When there was on any day windstorm or dark cloud its effect could be read on the face of the Messenger of All¯h. it is a good state to which you are sending him on: but if he was otherwise it is an evil of which you are ridding yourself” (2059). and All¯h gave me in exchange Muhammad. and the good of that which it was sent for. supplicate for good. PRAYERS FOR THE DEAD There are also prayers for the dead and the dying. and the good which it contains. the Apostle of All¯h used to say: O All¯h! I ask Thee a a for what is good in it. “If the dead person was good. WEEPING OVER THE DEAD Muhammad discouraged weeping over the dead: “The dead is punished because of his family’s weeping over it” (2015).” ’Aisha a tells us. Ub¯da. and he moved forward and backward in a state of anxiety. and the evil of that what it was sent for” (1962). I seek refuge with Thee from what is evil in it. When you visit the sick or the dead. PRAYER (SAL AT) PRAYERS FOR DIFFERENT OCCASIONS There are prayers for rain. what evil it contains. ‘There is no god but All¯h.

meaning loud lamenting” (2010). Life of Mahomet. IV. This was a fine gesture on Muhammad’s part after sending his mother to hell in fulfillment of the demand for theological consistency. had¯ 912. is . also William Muir. i. who was only eighteen months old. but loud wailing and false laudation of the dead. 3 Tirmiz¯ vol. according to certain traditions. p. I sought permission from Him to visit her grave.” 3 MUHAMMAD AND HIS MOTHER Muhammad tells us: “I sought [All¯h’s] permission to beg forgiveness for my mother. His followers tried to comfort him by reminding him of his own exhortation not to weep. but He punishes for this [pointing to his tongue]. I. Muhammad also sobbed aloud. and He granted it to me” (2129). over his expiring child. Muhammad replied: “It is not this that I forbade. vol. a but He did not grant it to me. 165.27 the heart feels.


the zak¯t funds are meant for “the poor and the paupers a a [fuqar¯ and misk¯ for those in bondage and debt. “in the service. Much of the “Book of Zak¯t” is concerned with the question of power.Chapter 4 The Poor Tax (Zak¯t) a The fifth book is on al-zak¯t (charity or poor tax). an a obligatory payment made by the Muslims to the new state that was forming. of All¯h. Perhaps the rhetoric on charity emanates largely from this situation. But with him it became a tax.” those who collect and administer the funds. or zak¯t. or inclining] the hearts [muallafa qul ubuhum]” to ¯ ¯ Isl¯m (Qur¯n 9:60). Zakat was solely meant for the brothers in faith. ¯ USES OF ZAKAT FUNDS According to the Qur¯n. a a In the technical vocabulary of Isl¯m. no sense of a larger human brotherhood. In the begina ning. Muhammad too stresses the importance of charity. and everyone else was excluded on principle. In this form. But two other items are also mentioned which deserve special attention. The funds are also to be used for the “bureaucracy.” All these are a in]. an old Arab practice. Muhammad had many followers who were needy. Every society preaches and to some a extent practices charity toward its less-fortunate brothers. The funds are to be used in “the service of All¯h” (f¯ ¯ a isab ili’llah) and for “gaining over [or reconciling. and those a who spent it actually acquired a new source of power and patronage. the first phrase. and for the wayfarers. depended a great deal on the goodwill and charity of the people of Medina. There was as yet no universal fellowship as such for a brother in distress.” a a 29 . and to be spent by its representatives. and most of them. ¯ This has been the Muslim practice ever since. being migrants. conventional recipients of charity. those who paid zak¯t were resentful. or way.

or 1 pound]” (2134). a AN UNPOPULAR TAX There is an interesting had¯ which shows that the zak¯t tax was unpopular even with is a the highest. The resentment against zak¯t was general. Faz¯r. “No Sadaqa [zak¯t] is payable on five wasqs of a dates or grain [1 wasq = about 425 pounds]. a had refused to pay the tax. a a and horses. There was no tax on horses meant for use in a jih¯d. THE POOR TAX (ZAK AT) means religious warfare. a But things were rougher and not as easily settled as this had¯ seems to suggest. and after this the tax collection became smoother. or reconciling. Wal¯ id id (who later became a famous Muslim general) and even the Prophet’s own uncle. and children back to Medina as hostages. Zak¯t funds are to be spent on buying arms. . equipment. and as for ’Abb¯s. women.” means “bribes” in unadorned language. This was an important limb of the Prophet’s religious offensive and diplomacy. ’Umar was appointed the collector. as it still has for his followers. when the power of Muhammad became supreme. In the beginning of the ninth year of the Hijra (Hegira). and several other tribes. I shall be responsible a a . the armours and weapons for the sake of All¯h. or jih¯d. ’Umar. “gaining over. Also. After is the conquest of Mecca. “No Sadaqa is 4 due from a Muslim on his slave or horse” (2144). The Bedouins complained to the Prophet that the “collectors of Sadaqa come to us and treat us unjustly. it had for the Prophet.30 ¯ CHAPTER 4. So Muhammad sent a u im punitive force consisting of fifty Arab horsemen. the collection of the tithe became aggressive. . hearts. ’Abb¯s. a Ghif¯r. who shared the burden of the tax but not its benefits.” and that of adversaries should be subverted by the same means. . Aslam. The second phrase. bear in mind. the uncle of a person is like his father” (2148). and as the Qur¯nic a verse shows. Upon this the Messenger of All¯h said: Please your collectors” (2168). parties of collectors were sent out in different directions to realize the tax from the Kil¯b. . It was particularly strong among the nona Medinan Arab tribes. It seems that the opposition of a section of a a the tribe of Ban¯ Tam¯ to the collection was somewhat forceful. EXEMPTIONS AND INCENTIVES There was a lower exemption limit. on less than five camel heads and on less than five uqiyas of silver [1 uqiya = about 10 tons. The faith of new converts should be strengthened with the help of generous “gifts. Muhammad replied: “You are unjust to Khal¯ for he reserved id. “The horse which is used for riding in jih¯d is exempted from the payment a a of zak¯t” (note 1313). When he reported that Khal¯ b. a heavenly sanction. who took the tribe by surprise and brought fifty men. They had to be ransomed.

then on relatives and friends. The order in which one should spend his wealth is this: First on one’s own self. When Muhammad heard this. and then on other good deeds. and in some ways wisely. In fact. and they wait a turn of fortune against you. these then would be heated in the Fire of Hell and his sides. All¯h a a warns Muhammad: “Some of desert Arabs look upon their payments as a fine. during a day the extent of which would be fifty thousand years. “a sandy plain would be set for him. Muhammad’s response to this generosity was positive.” The same fate awaits the tax-defaulting owner of cows and sheep: “They will gore him with their horns and trample him with their hoofs” for the same period (2161).31 The Qur¯n itself is an eloquent witness to the Arab resentment against the tax. “If any owner of gold or silver does not pay what is due on him. he called him and asked him if he had any other . then on one’s wife and children. when the Day of Resurrection would come. But he taught. for God both hears and knows” (9:98). but against them shall a turn of evil fortune be. an Arab once willed that his slave was to be freed after his death.” And for someone who owns camels and does not pay. as extensive as possible. Their opposition ceased only when they became partners in the growing Muslim imperialism and their zak¯t obligation was drowned in the immense gains derived from military conquests and a colonization abroad.” and his camels “will trample him with their hoofs and bite him with their mouths . And when these cool down. that charity should begin at home. the resentment was so great that as soon as Muhammad died. Following a common practice. forehead and his back would be cauterized with them. plates of fire would be beaten out for him. the Arabs of that time would take their camels to a pond every six or seven days and there milk them and distribute the milk among the needy (note 1329). the Arab tribes rose in revolt against the infant Muslim state and had to be reconquered. This point is brought out in many ah¯d¯ a is (2183-2195). . DIVINE SANCTIONS The divine punishment for not paying the poor tax is more gruesome than any secular punishment devised by a human agency. For example. CHARITY SHOULD BEGIN AT HOME There was a lot of uncoerced charity in its nontax version among the Arabs of preMuhammad days. the process is repeated during a day the extent of which would be fifty thousand years. .

And even then it should not conflict with the well-being of the family of the believer. URGINGS AND PLEADINGS Muhammad makes an eloquent plea for aims-giving. and if anything is left it should be spent on your relatives. and told him: “Start with your own self and spend it on yourself. . And assisting a man to ride upon his beast. ¯ (2197-2204). And in another had¯ “In every declaration of the glorification of All¯h 1 [i. The emancipation of slaves was not a matter of justice but only of charity. Among those whom God affords protection is one “who gives charity and conceals it so that the right hand does not know what the left hand has given” (2248). or helping him load his luggage upon it. and in man’s sexual intercourse [with his wife . and removing of harmful things from the pathway is a Sadaqa” (2204). there is a Sadaqa” (2198). and every step that you take towards prayer is a Sadaqa. There are some other passages of equal beauty and insight. THE POOR TAX (ZAK AT) property..the a a omission is supplied by the translator]. A lady set her slave-girl free. Muhammad then sold the slave for 800 dirhams. ¯ 1 .32 ¯ CHAPTER 4. The man replied no. When informed about it. Muhammad told her: “Had you given her to your maternal uncle. ah¯d is a “Administering of justice between two men is also a Sadaqa. it should be spent on your family.” There is another story that makes the same point. there is a Sadaqa . People who cannot pay in money can pay in piety and good acts. Muhammad tells us that “if anyone gives as Sadaqa the equivalent of one date . of course. DEEPER ASPECTS Rather unusual for the Had¯ charity in its deeper aspect is also mentioned in some is. . All ah can only be glorified monotheistically. and if anything is left. the Lord would accept it with His Right Hand” (2211). and ¯ the glorification of All ah must include glorification of Muhammad too. is a Sadaqa. And. . . So the morality that Muhammad taught on the question was not particularly heroic. saying is: a Subh¯n All¯h]. Everyone should give charity even if it is only half a date. and a good word is a Sadaqa. not polytheistically or pantheistically.e. Nor was it really revolutionary. Ab¯ Mas¯d reports: “We were commanded to give charity though u u we were coolies” (2223). In the same vein. but it agrees with the general practice. you would have a greater reward” (2187). gave the money to the owner.

of ah¯d¯ 2174 a is and 2175. telling him to stay where he was until he returned. the rich man might perhaps learn a lesson and spend from what All¯h has given him. although in their own way they must be reassuring to believers. he remembered his command and remained where he was. Was not the a first part enough? Must a blessing always go along with a curse? The Prophet warns believers to make their Sadaqa and be quick about it. give him more who spends. for instance. with praise to All¯h.33 One had¯ tells us: “There is never a day wherein servants [of God] get up at mom. Ab¯ u Zarr reports that while he and Muhammad were once walking together. PARADISE Some of the material included in certain discussions in the various ah¯d¯ is not in fact a is relevant to the nominal topic of the discussion. a . One of them says: O All¯h. This is true. for “there would come a time when a person would roam about with Sadaqa of gold but he would find no one to accept it from him. first to an adulteress. CHARITY AND DISCRIMINATION There is a had¯ which seems to teach that charity should be indiscriminate. he proves “the truth of the Prophetic statement” (note 1366). Came the angel to him and said: “Your charity has been accepted. Ab¯ Zarr sought an explanation for u the sounds. For example. What does this mean? The translator finds the statement truly prophetic. and a the thief might thereby refrain from committing theft. which both relate to zak¯t but also treat matters that have nothing to do with a charity.” He also adds that “a man would be seen followed by forty women seeking refuge with him on account of the scarcity of males and abundance of females” (2207). After a while Muhammad was out of sight but Ab¯ Zarr heard some sounds. THEFT. By citing the male and female population figures for postwar England and showing their disproportion. Although he was u apprehensive of some possible mishap to the Prophet.” For his charity might become the means whereby the adulteress “might restrain herself from fornication. then to a a thief. FORNICATION. When Muhammad returned. bring destruction to one who withholds” (2205). Muhammad replied: “It was Gabriel. then to a rich man. A man is gives charity. is but are not visited by two angels. a and the other says: O All¯h. Muhammad left him to go some other place. who came to me and said: He who dies among your Ummah without associating anything with All¯h would enter Paradise. I said: a Even if he committed fornication or theft? He said: Even if he committed fornication or theft” (2174).” One may suppose that the man’s acts of charity had these wonderful results because they were accompanied by “praise to All¯h” (2230).

gifts were welcome. “Sadaqa is not permissible for us. but he replied: “It does not become the family of Muhammad to accept Sadaqa for they are the impurities of the people. Its distribution created a lot of a . He took it. In fact.” said the Prophet (2340). or as gifts for his Companions. WAR BOOTY Within a very short period.” i. a Muhammad regards war booty as something especially his own. saying: “That is Sadaqa for her and a gift for us” (2351). but on the other. but it was not to be accepted by the a family of Muhammad. or on the “Path of All¯h. But though sadaqa was not permitted. whether as zak¯t for the poor. The family included ’Al¯ Ja’far. zak¯t became secondary. Other funds at his disposal for distribution were also increasing. ’Abd i. Bar¯ Muhammad’s wife’s ira. it is zak¯t. who in any case needed it less and less as they became heirs to the growing Arab imperialism. When it is a acquired. it is war booty. a Khums. on preparations a a for armed raids and battles against the polytheists. il. the distinction between the two was soon lost. a wanted to become collectors of zak¯t in order to secure means of marrying. has two aspects. This new money was hardly zak¯t money but war booty. presented Muhammad with a piece of meat that his own wife had given her as sadaqa. and Haris b. ’Abd al-Muttalib and Fazl b. Charity was good enough for others but not for the proud descendants of Muhammad.. “The spoils of war are for All¯h and His Messenger”(Qur¯n 8:1). ’Abb¯s. They went a to Muhammad with their request. it is still war booty. two young men belonging to Muhammad’s family. the one-fifth portion of the spoils of war which goes to the treasury.e. when it is distributed among the ummah. a al-Muttalib and their posterity. freed slave. They are put in his hands by All¯h to be a a a spent as he thinks best. it is zak¯t. or as a bribes to incline the polytheists to Isl¯m.34 ¯ CHAPTER 4.” But he arranged marriages for the two men and told his treasurer: “Pay so much Mahr [dowry] on behalf of both of them from the khums” (2347). THE POOR TAX (ZAK AT) ¯ ZAKAT NOT FOR MUHAMMAD’S FAMILY Zak¯t was meant for the needy of the ummah. and thus the “Book of Zak¯t” imperceptibly becomes a book on war spoils. On the one hand. ’Aq¯ ’Abb¯s. and war spoils became the primary a source of revenue of the Muslim treasury. DISSATISFACTION Most of the properties abandoned by the Ban¯ Naz¯ were appropriated by Muhammad u ir for himself and his family.

They a received a hundred camels each from the booty. justice.” Sa’d drew the Prophet’s attention to this believing Muslim. both mundane and celestial. Hisn. Safw¯n u a a b. Umayya.or at any rate that others deserved less . The translator and a commentator makes the point very clear by saying that it was “with a view to bringing him nearer and making him feel at home in the Muslim society that material gifts were conferred upon him by the Holy Prophet” (note 1421). ’Uyaina b. . Zaid reports that “when the Messenger of All¯h conquered Hunain he distributed the booty. that is. GAINING HEARTS BY GIVING GIFTS The principle of distribution was not always based on need. He however left a person a and did not give him anything and he seemed to me the most excellent among them. Harb. so that I may incline them to truth. To gain hearts (mullafa qul ubhum) for Isl¯m with the help of gifts is considered impec¯ a cable behavior.” says Muhammad (2303). There are other instances of the same type. ’Ul¯sa or Amir b. “and the fourth one was either ’Alqama b. like Ab¯ Sufy¯n b. Ab¯ T¯lib from i u a Yemen. Muhammad had to exercise considerable diplomacy. . I often bestow something on a person. He distributed it among four men: ’Uyaina. but Muhammad replied: “He may be a Muslim. combined with threats. Zaid al-Khail. Traditions have preserved the names of some of these elite beneficiaries. Aqra. Muhammad made effective a use of gifts as a means of winning people over to Isl¯m. He bestowed costly gifts on the Quraish and Bedouin chiefs. ’Abdullah b. and he bestowed upon a those whose hearts it was intended to win” (2313). or merit. Aqra’ b. many of them his enemies only a few weeks before.35 heart-rending among his followers.than they got. he may give up Isl¯m and go back to his old religion. Muhammad did the same with the booty of some gold sent by ’Al¯ b. whereas someone else is dearer to me than he. Many of them thought they deserved more . H¯bis. and ’Alqama b. because of the fear that he [the former] may fall headlong into the fire” (2300). in perfect accord with Qur¯nic teaching (9:60). “I give [at times material gifts] to persons who were quite recently in the state of unbelief. Tufail” (2319). Sa’d reports that “the Messenger of All¯h bestowed gifts upon a group of people . He would reward new converts a generously but overlook the claims of Muslims of long standing. Muhammad had other considerations as well. Ulasa (2303-2314). a . .

To cajolery. after the conquest of Mecca. and said: “Messenger of All¯h. Muhammad “was deeply angry . were merely his “outer garments”.36 ¯ CHAPTER 4. Muhammad added other words of flattery and told the ans¯rs that they were his “inner a garments” (i. MUHAMMAD RUFFLED According to another tradition. while the Quraish. but less than his share to ’Abb¯s b. The ans¯rs a were happy. they complained about the unjust distribution of the spoils. THE POOR TAX (ZAK AT) PACIFICATION But this course was not without its problems. and shaven head. fear All¯h and do justice. ’Abb¯s told a a a a Muhammad: “I am in no way inferior to anyone of these persons. and you should go back with the Apostle of All¯h.. “Don’t you feel delighted that [other] people should go with riches. whereas I am a trustee of Him Who is in the heaven? The news comes to me from the heaven morning and evening. They had grumbled: “It is strange that our swords are dripping with their blood.” On hearing this. u a Safw¯n. stood up. i Muhammad showed favoritism. a man with deep-sunken eyes. When some people complained. but he showed patience” (2315). One man complained that “this is a distribution in which the pleasure of Allah has not been sought. Mird¯s.” he told the ans¯rs with great a a success when. and he replied: “Woe be upon thee. who would do justice if I do not do . he added theology.” a canal in heaven (2313). who had received the spoils. And he who is let down today would not be elevated.” Then Muhammad “completed one hundred camels for him” (2310). It created quite a lot of dissatisfaction among some of his old supporters.” This silenced the men.” This angered a a Muhammad. In other cases when similar complaints were made. . Muhammad could not always keep his temper. ¯ THE KHWARIJ ’Al¯ sent some gold alloyed with dust from Yemen to Muhammad. thick beard. but one of them. ’Uyaina. Muhammad demanded: “Will you not trust me. he found comfort in the fact that “Moses was tormented more than this. were closer to him). and Aqra.e. prominent cheekbones. whereas our spoils have been given to them [the Quraish]” (2307). In its distribution. and Muhammad had to use all his powers of diplomacy and flattery to pacify them. Muhammad gave a hundred camels each to Ab¯ Sufy¯n. and his face ¯ became red”. . telling them that they “should show patience till they meet him at Hauz Kausar.

” Though the man was spared. kill them. . If I were to find them I would kill them like a ’Ad [a people who were exterminated root and branch]” (2316-2327). permit me a to kill this hypocrite. These were the anarchists and purists of the early days of Isl¯m. It was about them. Muhammad said: “From this very person’s posterity there would arise people who would recite the Qur¯n. them. .37 justice?” ’Umar. for in their killing you would get a reward with All¯h on the Day of a Judgment” (2328). who later on were called the khw¯rij. The a injunction about them was: “Pursue them as they are routed and kill their prisoners and destroy their property.” . according to ’Al¯ that Muhammad said: “When you meet i. who was present. they would kill the followers of a Isl¯m but would spare the idol-worshippers . he and his posterity were denounced. These men. but it would not go beyond their throat. took some of the slogans of Isl¯m a a seriously. said to Muhammad: “Messenger of All¯h.


who ate early and broke their fasts late. a FASTS There are many kinds of fasts in Isl¯m.Chapter 5 Fasting and Pilgrimage (Sawm and Hajj) The sixth and seventh books relate respectively to fasting (al-sawm) and pilgrimage (al-hajj). Enjoined in the Qur¯n. but nonetheless there is an attempt to make things easy. the gates of mercy are opened. Fasting in the Muslim tradition is rather different from fasting in many other religious traditions.” a 39 . The translator explains the advantages that accrued to the ummah from maintaining this difference. and “the people will continue to prosper as long as they hasten the breaking of the fast” (2417). In Isl¯m. “Take meal a little before dawn. it is compulsory. waiting for the stars to appear. This has its disciplinary role. there is no uninterrupted fasting (sawm wisal). “The difference between our fasting and that of the People of the Book is eating shortly before dawn. During fasts eating is prohibited in the daytime but permitted at night. for there is a blessing in taking meal at that time” (2412).” says Muhammad (2413). This approach distinguished the Muslims from the Jews and the Christians. and the gates a of Hell are locked and the devils are chained” (2361). a “When there comes the month of Ramz¯n. and to break the fast as soon as possible after sunset. because Muhammad a forbade this practice (2426-2435) “out of mercy” for his Companions (2435). but the fast during the month of Ramz¯n a a (Ramadan) is considered the most important. One is advised to eat as late as possible before sunrise. Both of these practices are accounted among the “pillars” of Isl¯m. It “distinguishes the Ummah of the Isl¯m from other Ummahs.

Muhammad gave him a basket of dates and told him: “Go and give it to your family to eat” (2457). failing that. This feeling inculcates in one a spirit of humility rather than of stoic pride” (note 1491). even if one gets up in a state of seminal emission and the dawn overtakes him without giving him time for the ordained bath. In fact. The translator elucidates: “It is one of the great favours of All¯h upon humanity that a He has guided us in every sector of our life through his Prophet Muhammad.” says the Qur¯n a (2:187). . “It is made lawful for you to go to your wives on the night of the fast. a poor man who violated this prohibition got his expiation at no cost to himself. failing that. There are other ah¯d¯ on the same subject (2451-2456). FASTING AND PILGRIMAGE (SAWM AND HAJJ) and “hammers” into its consciousness the sense of “its separate entity which is the first step towards prosperity of any nation. and Salama. It has a divine sanction. by observing a two-month fast or. At first Ab¯ Huraira is u u thought differently.” In addition. the man observing fast separated himself completely from his wives. “taking a meal late in the dawn and breaking fast early at the sunset indicate the fact that one feels the pangs of hunger . Sexual intercourse during the daytime in the month of Ramz¯n could be atoned for a either by freeing a slave or. in the month of Ramz¯n. Missed fasts could be completed later on at any time of the year. and then she [’Aisha] a smiled” (2436). Isl¯m did not a a approve this practice” (note 1502). he should still go on with his fast. Muhammad’s wives. . Kissing and embracing too are permissible (2436-2450). . . ’Aisha. Women do not fast during the days of menses but are required to complete the fast the following year before the commencement of the next Ramz¯n (in the month of Sha’b¯n). . The state of janabah (in which one is “unclean” and cannot perform a religious act or join in religious assemblies) does not break the fast.40 CHAPTER 5. by feeding sixty poor men . Prior to Isl¯m. Hafsa. and would observe fast” a (2454). he said. Sexual intercourse is also permitted during the night of the fast.” and retracted his previous position (2451). ’Aisha and Salama. SEXUAL INTERCOURSE ALLOWED DURING RAMZAN The Prophet softens the rigor of the fast somewhat by proclaiming that “eating and drinking in forgetfulness does not break the fast” (2575). report: “The Messenger of All¯h at times got up in the morning in a state of Junub on a account of having a sexual intercourse .but during the Prophet’s lifetime. but when the matter was clarified by ’Aisha and Salama. Muhammad’s wives. all report that the Prophet used to kiss them and embrace them while fasting. a a . “They have better knowledge. ’Aisha narrates: “The Messenger of All¯h kissed one of his wives while he was fasting. a is This had¯ was checked and rechecked by Ab¯ Bakr himself.

“Quraish used to fast on this day” (2499). but after a . ’Aisha reports: “I had to complete some of the fasts of Ramz¯n. while the husband is present.” Muhammad tells the believers (2486). so break the fast. “You are going to encounter the enemy in the morning a a and breaking of the fast would give you strength.41 FASTING NOT OBLIGATORY UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES Under certain circumstances fasting was optional. A woman can feel free in his presence and thus need not observe purdah. “If one amongst us had to break fasts [of Ramz¯n due to natural reasons.e. The translator gives us the rationale for this injunction.. observed on the tenth day of Muharram. ’Aisha reports a the same about Muhammad’s other wives. For example. but a I could not do it .e. There is even a reward for not observing the fast if you are engaged in the “Way of All¯h. The translator a a explains that every wife of Muhammad was “so much devoted to him that she avoided fasting lest it should stand in her way in the performance of her duty as a wife to him” (note 1546). due to my duties to the Messenger of All¯h” (2549).” Muhammad told a questioner on the subject (2488). It was not only from devotion but also because of Muhammad’s injunction that the wives did not fast. Women sometimes abstained from fasts so that they could perform their duties to their husbands unhindered. One is the Ashura fast. “No woman should observe fast when her spouse is present [in the house] but with his permission. A mahram is a near relative with whom it is unlawful to marry. and not to admit even those relatives of theirs in their apartments who are maharam to them so that they may not stand in the way of the husbands to satisfy their sexual urge” (note 1387). The Ashur day “was one which the Jews respected and they treated it as ’Id” (2522). “Fast if you like and break it if you like. And she should not admit any mahram in his house. “Such is the regard which Isl¯m a gives to the natural instinct of man that it enjoins upon women not to observe (voluntary) fasts. a fast during a journey could be broken. menses] during the life of the Messenger of All¯h. a a she could not find it possible to complete them so long as she had been in the presence of All¯h’s Messenger till Sha’b¯n [the eighth month] commenced” (2552). . in the act of jih¯d.. OTHER FASTS Several other fasts are mentioned.” i. but with his permission” (2238). . and in the pre-Isl¯mic days. i.

On the Day of a Resurrection. Its ninety-two chapters contain minute instructions on the rites and rituals of the pilgrimage. One day.” Muhammad tells us. a a a because of this day. The recompense of one who combines fasting with jih¯d will be immense. Even the very first Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca under the leadership a . or he may retain it if he so likes” (2573). But it has great social and political importance for Isl¯m. Muhammad asked ’Aisha for some food. All¯h would remove. PILGRIMAGE The book on hajj (“setting out”) is full of ceremonial details which have little interest for non-Muslims.42 CHAPTER 5. providing useful guidance to a hajji (pilgrim) but of dubious value to a traveler of the Spirit. and ’Aisha offered it to Muhammad. THE MERITS OF FASTING There are many merits in observing the fasts.and when the last of them has entered. there will be a gate called Rayy¯n in Paradise. but we need not go into them here. but nothing was available. and then he said: “This observing of voluntary fasts is like a person who sets apart Sadaqa out of his wealth. One interesting thing about these fasts is that one could declare one’s intention of observing them in the morning but break them without reason in the evening. through which only those a who have fasted will be allowed to enter . “The breath of the observer of fast is sweeter to All¯h than the fragrance of musk. He asked: “What is it?” ’Aisha said: “It is hais [a compound of dates and clarified butter].” After some time. FASTING AND PILGRIMAGE (SAWM AND HAJJ) Muhammad migrated to Medina he made it optional for his followers. He may spend it if he likes. his face from the Fire of Hell to the extent of seventy years’ distance” (2570). AN IDOLATROUS IDEA Considered from the viewpoint of Muslim theology. Thereupon Muhammad said: “I am observing fast.” He said: “Bring that. “Every a servant of All¯h who observes fast for a day in the way of All¯h. Other voluntary fasts are mentioned.” ’Aisha further narrates: “So I brought it to him and he ate it”. “it would be closed and no one would enter it” (2569). some food came as gift. the whole idea of pilgrimage to Mecca and the Ka’ba is close to being idolatrous.

was declared one of the five fundamentals of Isl¯m. as the Qur¯n puts it. ¯ THE STATE OF IHR AM The “Book of Pilgrimage” deals with the pilgrim’s attire and with the place where he puts on the garments of a pilgrim. and anyone could see that this was hardly a band of pilgrims. unlike the last time. entering into the state of ihr¯m (“prohibiting”).” Great preparations were made for the occasion. ih p. at their own convenience and for their own gods. Muhammad started out for Mecca to perform the ’umrah ceremony (the lesser pilgrimage). but not before and after. Everyone was in a hurry to jump on the bandwagon. Mecca succumbed. partially armed. It was to be a demonstration of the power of Muhammad. fifteen hundred was an impressive number. “The best of perfume. Muhammad’s power was unrivaled. he had appealed to the desert Arabs to join him. 632. and the Bedouin tribes understood that this summons was more than an invitation to a pilgrimage of the type they had formerly performed on their own. “I a applied perfume to the Messenger of All¯h as he became free from Ihr¯m and as he entered a a upon it. he is forbidden to “put on a shirt or a turban. D.” she adds in another had¯ (2685). called the Treaty of Hodeibia. by a kind of delayed action. In order to swell the number. “As the caravan moved on. they knew. 612). and a victory it turned out to be. In the sixth year of the Hijra. for no booty was promised and they thought. in March A. but their response was lukewarm. that “the Apostle and the believers a would never return to their families” (48:12). Thus. Muhammad undertook another pilgrimage. Muhammad regarded this as a victory for himself. or trouser or cap” (2647). it reached more than 130. It was also. or hajj.000 (Sah¯ Muslim.” After the fall of Mecca. their response on this occasion was great.43 of Muhammad was perhaps more of a political demonstration and a military expedition than a religious congregation. pilgrimage. according to some of the narrators. in a which he is forbidden to do certain things till he has completed his worship at Mecca. He headed a pilgrim force of fifteen hundred men. a Two years later. is . In this year of victory. Two years later. “Messengers were sent to all parts of Arabia inviting people to join him in this great Pilgrimage. a call to submission. It was meant to be more than an assembly of believers. it turned out to be his last and is celebrated in the Muslim annals as the “Farewell Pilgrimage of the Apostle.” until. Even so. For his dress.” says ’Aisha (2683). The use of perfume is disallowed during the state of ihr¯m. The Meccans had to enter into a treaty with Muhammad. the number of participants swelled. the very first after coming to Medina.

then makes seven circuits round the Ka’ba (taw¯f). CIRCUMAMBULATION AND KISSING After a man has put on the pilgrim’s robe. The leg of a wild ass killed by a non-muhrim Companion was presented to Muhammad. “Talbiyah. he instills an unrelenting enmity toward the infidels. he recites the following: “There is no deity but All¯h . and he should be conspicuous” (2919). “Four are the vicious beasts” he should still kill: “kite. this does not make him a Jain or a Vaishnava.” reports Ab¯ u Tufail (2921). . I know that a you are a stone and if I were not to see All¯h’s Messenger kissing you.” according to the Qur¯n (2:158). I would not have a kissed you” (2912). He should now proceed toward Mecca singing the pilgrim’s song. the two “Signs of All¯h. . Labbaika! All¯humma!” (“I stand up for thy service. “I saw All¯h’s Messenger circumambulating the House. and then kissing the stick. he should not shave or pare his nails. rat and voracious dog. and hath aided His servant a [Muhammad] and bath put to flight the hosts of infidels by Himself alone. its flesh is acceptable to a muhrim. saying: “If we were not in a state of Ihr¯m. he performs ablutions in the Masjidu’l Har¯m and kisses the Black Stone (ala hajaru’l-aswad). “The Messenger of All¯h took a it and ate it” (2714). Though hunting of a sort is forbidden to a muhrim. . but he declined it. O All¯h”). For the same reason. so that people should see him.44 CHAPTER 5. . .” But “what about a snake?” somebody asks.. He hath performed His promise. The practice of kissing the Stone is idolatrous. crow. he touched the Corner (Black Stone) with a stick. FASTING AND PILGRIMAGE (SAWM AND HAJJ) HUNTING Hunting too is forbidden to a muhrim (one in a state of ihr¯m). two seamless wrappers. ’Umar said: “By All¯h. Muhammad himself a circumambulated “on the back of his riding camel . run between al-Saf¯ and al-Marwa]” (2923). and touching a the Corner with a stick that he had with him. After arriving a a in Mecca. Muslim scholars argue that the Ka’ba and the Black Stone are objects of veneration and not of worship. But if the animal is a killed by a non-muhrim. we would have accepted it from you” (2704). Following the lead of Christian theologians who distinguish between veneratio and adoratio. a a Muhammad says that “All¯h does not complete the Hajj of a person or his ’Umra if he a does not observe Sa’i [i. Muhammad replies: “Let it be killed with disgrace” (2717). a Each time the pilgrim is on the top of these mounts.e. At every turn. Another important rite is that the pilgrim runs from the top of Mount al-Saf¯ to the a summit of Mount al-Marwa. Somebody once a presented Muhammad with the flesh of a wild ass.” Muhammad never relaxes.

on the 11th . One who cannot go for hajj can send a sacrificial animal to al-Haram and earn merit thereby. therefore. a is and on the best time for throwing them. Their number should be odd. “The Messenger of All¯h sacrificed a cow on behalf of ’Aisha” a (3030).” All¯h and Devil a are somehow inseparable in certain theologies. Its left foreleg should be tied to its hindlegs. The three pillars at Min¯ represent the three a occasions when this happened. and in hatred of the Devil and his shame. .” the pilgrim throws seven pebbles at Jamrat al-’Aqaba. 12th and 13th of Dhu’l-Hijja when the sun had declined” (2980). and stayed at Medina and nothing was forbidden to him which was lawful for him before” (3036). “Odd number of stones are to be used for cleaning the private parts after answering the call of nature. and was driven away by the simple method which Gabriel taught them of throwing seven small pebbles. ANIMAL SACRIFICE Next comes the sacrifice of the ’idu’l-azh¯. and then sent them to the House. and after that . and the number of circuits a around the Ka’ba is also odd (seven). On the tenth a day. he chants: “In the name of a ir. While doing this. the h¯jji should not make his camel “kneel down” but a slaughter it in a standing posture and in a fettered condition “according to the Sunn¯h of a the Holy Prophet” (3032). Abraham. on their size and number. Cows and goats should be sacrificed after making them lie down. God. This ceremony celebrates an ancient event when the Devil successively met Adam. the Almighty.” says the Prophet (2982). It is permissible for seven persons to join in the sacrifice of a cow or a camel (30243031). The best time for throwing them is after sunrise on the Day of Sacrifice .45 CASTING THE PEBBLES Another important ceremony is ramyu’r-rij¯m. or a cow or a camel. While sacrificing the camel. The h¯jji (pilgrim) could sacrifice a goat or a a a sheep. The pebbles should be small . the casting of the pebbles. and the number of circuits around al-Saf¯ and al-Marwa is also odd (seven). and then he marked them. and Ishmael. ’Aisha reports: “I wove the garlands for the sacrificial animals of All¯h’s Messenger a with my own hands. and the casting of pebbles at the Jamrat is to be done by odd numbers (seven).“All¯h’s Messenger flung pebbles at Jamra a on the Day of Nahr after sunrise. I do this.“I saw All¯h’s a Apostle throwing stones like pelting of small pebbles” (2979). also the “Day of Sacrifice. the pilgrim casts seven stones at each of the three pillars. There are several ah¯d¯ on the merits of throwing pebbles. and garlanded them. also known as Shait¯nu’l Kab¯ the Great Devil.

and when it was cooked. . both of them [’Al¯ and i Muhammad] took some meat out of it and drank its soup. On a similar pilgrimage the next year. were it not that people would usurp this right of supplying water from you. he sacrificed seventy camels at Hodeibia. declining the offer of a cleaner and purer one. FASTING AND PILGRIMAGE (SAWM AND HAJJ) As Muhammad’s affluence increased. a He also did not forgo his favorite beverage. Many such wells are mentioned in the traditions (Tabaq¯t. would be considered unhygienic by the impious. On his ’umrah pilgrimage in the sixth year.46 CHAPTER 5. and the whole of Min¯ is a place of sacrifice. but Muhammad’s All¯h a expresses no such sentiment. Muhammad took part of the content. iz offered him had been fouled by many hands. He then commanded that a piece of flesh from each i animal sacrificed should be put in a pot. nab¯ a soft drink. so sacrifice your animals at your places” (2805). he sacrificed sixty camels. On the Farewell Pilgrimage in the tenth year. 241-244). vol. had declared that He “desired mercy. The orthodox pilgrims of every generation have continued the practice. “the total number of those a ¯ from Yemen [where he had gone on a campaign against sacrificial animals brought by ’Ali the Bani Nakha] and those brought by the Apostle was one hundred” (2803). . he said: “Draw water. and sacrificed sixty-three camels with his own hands. he took it. whose Temple was a veritable slaughterhouse.” To his followers. a Even Jehovah. the God of the Jews. then rinsed his mouth in the pitcher and directed that the water remaining in it should be thrown back into the well. That was his way of invoking a blessing on a well . So they handed him a basket and he drank from it” (2803). Muhammad said: “I have sacrificed the animals here.by spitting into it. II. one of a the consequences of the Prophet’s offering sacrifices is that sacrificing has become a sacred institution in Isl¯m. Thus we find in Isl¯m none of that generous movement of the spirit a a against animal sacrifice that we find in some measure in most cultures. pp. Coming to the tribe of ’Abd al-Muttalib (also his own tribe). his biographers tell us. the scale of his sacrifices also increased. we are told by J¯bir. Because Isl¯m is so preponderantly Muhammadism. A little further on in the same had¯ we are told that Muhammad “then went to the place of is sacrifice. Though the nab¯ iz. gives us one further detail which a a i. . K¯tib al-W¯qid¯ the Prophet’s biographer. I would have drawn it along with you. and not sacrifice” (Hosea 6:6). Then he gave the remaining number to ’Al¯ who sacrificed them . O Ban¯ ’Abd i al-Muttalib. DRINK Muhammad also drank water from the well of Zamzam as part of the ritual.

1 Most religions build houses or temples for their gods out of their own labor. and the h¯jji has himself a shaved and his nails pared and his pilgrim garment removed. He then gave these hairs to the people” (2991). 29). that “All ah is ¯ ¯ free from obligation to the idolaters and so is His Messenger.” as Ibn Ish¯q tells us (S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. KA’BA CLOSED TO NON-MUSLIMS The Ka’ba.” it was declared on his behalf (3125). The ¯ ¯ relevant Qur anic verses are: “If you fear poverty. turning his right side to him. and sacrificed the animal. the ceremony of pilgrimage concludes. whether they were wora shippers of Al-L¯h or Al-L¯t. So Muhammad proposed a poll tax on the Jews and the Christians “as a compensation for what you fear to lose by the closing of the markets. Any other house is a monument of imperialist greed and aggrandizement and is not acceptable to the gods of the purified spirit.” Four months were given to them either to mend their ways or face death. Fight against ¯ ¯ such of those who have been given the scripture and believe not in All ah . A worthy habia tation for any worthwhile god is the one built by his devotees with the love of their hearts and the labor of their hands. All ah will enrich you from His grace . which had been open to all in pre-Isl¯mic times. kill the idolaters wherever you may find them. let him shave him. This was All¯h’s own command. a Now the pilgrimage is over. and prepare for them each ambush . Before a returning home. he should go to Medina to pay his homage at the tomb of Muhammad. he should again go round the Ka’ba seven times and throw stones at the satanic pillars at Min¯ seven times. Before leaving Mecca. was closed to all except Muslims after Muhammad conquered a a Mecca. and so they shall not approach the sacred House of worship from this year onward” (9:28). after which he turned his left side. the hairs became important Isl¯mic relics. p. But a “discharge” came to Muhammad from All ah absolving him from his side of the obligation. Muslims thought that if non-Muslims were disallowed to enter Mecca. 620). All¯h. The Qur¯n says: “O you who believe! a a those who ascribe partners to God are impure. Lo! All ah is forgiving and merciful” ¯ (Qur an 9:5). The difference is striking.47 SHAVING: MUHAMMAD’S HAIR After the sacrifice. . until they pay the tribute with willing submission and be as little ones” (9:28. He then called a for a barber and. Shaving should begin from the right side. but the pilgrim should spend another three days in Mecca to rest after the hectic four days of ceremony. their trade would be ¯ affected. Anas reports that All¯h’s Messenger “went to Jamra and threw pebbles at a it. There was an agreement between Muhammad and the polytheists that none should be kept back from the temple and that none should fear interference from each other during the sacred months. . . but Isl¯m a conquered one for its god. . after which he went to his lodging in Min¯. . and take them and besiege them. Muslims were told that “when the sacred months are over. 1 . and follow not the religion of ¯ truth. “After this year no polytheist may perform the Pilgrimage. from others. .


He then went to his Companions and told them: The woman advances and returns in the shape of a devil. I observe fast and suspend observing them. popularly known as K¯tib a a at-W¯qid¯ the prophet’s biographer. he should come home and cohabit with his wife. 146). “I will not marry women”. II. a Muhammad forbids celibacy. he has no a relation with me” (3236). I marry women also? And who turns away from my Sunn¯h. According to a tradition derived from Ibn ’Abb¯s and quoted by Ibn Sa’d. another said. but Muhammad “forbade him to do so” (3239). A woman is a great safety valve. and yet another said. for that will repel what he feels in his heart” (3240). as she was tanning a leather and had sexual intercourse with her. “I will not eat meat”. 1 In fact.” Muhammad asked himself: “What has happened to these people that they say so and so. Muhammad said: “In my ummah. he is the best who has the largest a i. whereas I observe prayer and sleep too. vol. so when one of you see a woman. one section of it also discusses divorce (al-tal¯q). p. Zainab. but not in our own selves. “I will not lie down in bed. Muhammad discouraged self-denial in general. “All¯h’s Messenger saw a a woman and so he came to his wife. number of wives” (Tabaq at. One of his Companions said. “Those among you who can support a wife should marry. but if even that fails and a man is aroused by some other woman. We are all too ready to see the devil in others. ¯ 1 49 . One of his Companions wanted to live in celibacy. for it restrains eyes from casting evil glances and preserves one from immorality” (3231). he should come to his wife.Chapter 6 Marriage and Divorce ( Al-Nik¯h a and Al-Tal¯q) a The eighth book is entitled the “Book of Marriage”.

50 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. though what is rank is differently understood by different people. One who had committed a portion of the Qur¯n to memory was considered a qualified match a .” At this ’Abdullah felt happy and remembered the Qur¯nic a verse: “The believers do not make unlawful the good things which All¯h has made lawful a for you. consanguinity. All¯h does not like transgressors” (3243. Also. an Arab is considered higher than a non-Arab. but it is not entirely so. Wise” (Qur¯n 4:24). a a J¯bir reports: “We contracted temporary marriage giving a handful of dates and flour a as a dower” (3249). Qur¯n 5:87). It is also forbidden to marry an unbeliever (Qur¯n 2:220-221). to seek out wives by means of your wealth. H. He then granted us permission that we should contract temporary marriage for a stipulated period giving her a garment [for a dowry]. . 8] and then forbade it” (3251). MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) TEMPORARY MARRIAGE (Mut’ah) Muhammad allowed temporary marriages. and do not transgress. And it is allowed you. religion. Generally speaking. It is also forbidden to marry the daughter of one’s foster brother. we had been benefiting ourselves by this temporary marriage during the lifetime of the Holy Prophet. “that Allah’s Messenger gave sanction for contracting temporary marriage for three nights in the ¯ year of Aut¯s [after the Battle of Hunain. etc. a Sunni theologians regard this form of marriage as no longer lawful. Marriage is also disallowed when the parties are not equal in rank or status (kafa’ah). Verily. on the authority of his father. a man cannot marry more than four free women at a time (Qur¯n 4:3)-there is no restriction a on the number of slave concubines. and a male Muslim could then marry a Jew or a Christian (Qur¯n 5:5). ’Abdullah b. besides this. God is knowing. but the Shias differ and still practice it in Persia. with modest conduct. IYas b. Salama reports. He told another group: “Yes. and during the time of Ab¯ u Bakr and ’Umar” (3248). For example. The Shia theologians support this with a Qur¯nic verse: a “Forbidden to you also are married women. Mas’ud reports: “We were on an expedition with All¯h’s Messenger and we had no women with us. Later on. This is the law. There are many restrictions on grounds of number. the Prophet’s relatives being the highest. this restriction a was relaxed. And give those with whom you have cohabited their dowry. rank. We said: Should a we not have ourselves castrated? The Holy Prophet forbade us to do so. a PROHIBITIONS The law appears to be quite indulgent. . affinity. A. or even the sister of one’s wife if the wife is alive and not divorced (3412-3413). Under a no circumstances could a female Muslim marry a nonbeliever. one cannot marry one’s wife’s father’s sister nor her mother’s sister (3268-3277). and without fornication. . But it shall be no crime in you to make agreements over and above the law. except those who are your hands as slaves .

“Your wives are your tilth. to make the new contact unpleasant to the wife.e. she told Muhammad that all the new husband possessed was “like the fringe of a garment” (i. for Muhammad himself “married Maim¯na while he was a Muhrim” (3284). Aff¯n. which was sometimes lightly undertaken because reunion was easy. Shigh¯r marriage is also prohibited (3295-3301). 2 . hired by the first husband from among the ugly ones. “A Muhrim should neither marry nor make the proposal of marriage. not even an iron ring for a dowry. The Prophet “laughed” but withheld the permission. 3 THE HUSBAND’S RIGHTS A husband has complete sexual rights over his wife. “A believer is the brother of a believer. a One should also not outbid one’s brother. thrice) before severing it. he was sexually weak). vol. and he should not propose an agreement when his brother has thus proposed until he gives it up” (3294). The new dispensation led to another abuse. so it is not lawful for a believer to outbid his brother. and he disposes what Allah proposes. 2 This is the marriage which says: a Marry me your daughter or sister. One should also not marry when one has put on the ritual garb of pilgrimage. 269). It gave rise to the institution of the temporary ¯ husband. Ab¯ u Bakr’s daughter. A couple must realize that the marital relationship is a serious one and must think twice (in fact. Then Muhammad decided and said: “Go.” But the man possessed nothing. But man is inventive.51 by Muhammad himself. The same idea is also found in the Qur¯n a Is the prohibition connected with some event in the Prophet’s life? When He married ’Aisha. p. the latter said: u “He has rejected thy request” (Mirkhond. Seeking the Prophet’s permission. a a quoting the Prophet (3281). A woman came to him and entrusted herself to him. He “cast a glance at her from head to foot . He was turning away in disappointment when Muhammad asked him if he knew any verses of the Qur¯n and could recite them. Then a Companion who was there stood up and said: “Messenger of All¯h. 3 We are told that this injunction was laid down to discourage divorce.” he told her (3354). a I have given her to you in marriage for the part of the Qur¯n which you know” (3316). “You cannot do that until you have tasted his [the new husband’s] sweetness and he has tasted your sweetness.” When Ab¯ Bakr reported these words to ’Umar. u One cannot remarry one’s divorced wife unless she subsequently married someone else and the new husband had sexual intercourse with her and then divorced her (3354-3356). the latter in turn waited on him for the hand of his daughter. But Muhammad a replied: “I am waiting for a revelation. and in exchange I will give you in marriage my daughter or sister.” reports Usm¯n b.. go then unto your tilth as you may desire” (3363). . But this point is controversial. marry her to me if you have no a need for her. The man said yes. . but made no decision” about her. A divorcee married but then decided to go back to her old husband. I. Rauzat-us-Safa. F¯timah. part II.

she can seek a divorce. It is the duty of a wife to be responsive to all of her husband’s overtures. a minor girl given in marriage even called “compelling wal is. and we desired them . or what the Qur¯n in some verses (4:24.” by a guardian other than her father or grandfather can seek dissolution of the marriage when she attains her majority. but not if you commit them with the “women that your right hands possess. a woman has her rights. She is also entitled to a dowry (mahr).” They consulted Muhammad. and her silence implies her consent” (3307). “A woman who has been previously married (Sayyib) has more right to her person than her guardian. She can a ¯ claim it when divorced. 33:50) calls her “hire” (uj urat). if the husband fails to provide it. the guardian (wal¯ who does it. for that is in the hand of All¯h. for every soul that is to be born up to the Day of Resurrection will be born” (3371). which means vagina only. COITUS INTERRUPTUS (Al-’azl) Coitus interruptus is permitted. WOMEN’S RIGHTS In return. . the angels curse her until morning” (3366). Theoretically. as the commentators tell us. . . The father and the grandfather are i). Ab¯ Sirma reports: “We went out with All¯h’s Messenger a u a on the expedition . And a virgin should also be consulted. but in practice it is her nearest kinsman.” that is. . ¯ According to some schools. “When a woman spends the night away from the bed of her husband. CAPTIVE WOMEN Adultery and fornication are punished according to Muhammad’s law. So we decided to have sexual intercourse with them but by observing ’azl. but it should be through one hole” (3365). . a Muslim woman is entitled to make the marriage contract herself. Another had¯ in the same group tells the husband that “if he likes he may have is intercourse being on the back or in front of her. those women. She is entitled to a lawful maintenance (nafaqah). and he advised: “It does not matter if you do not do it.52 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) (2:223). She is also to be consulted in the choice of her partner. . but we also desired ransom for them. but it is useless if the object is to prevent conception. and took some excellent Arab women.

An Arab woman named ’Umra.” The man was sent on an expedition marching against the Ban¯ u ’Abs (3315).” Muhammad inquired. serve us drink” (4981).53 whether married or unmarried. The followers had a feeling of delicacy in the matter. Ah¯d¯ 3432-3434 tell us that this verse descended on the Prophet for the benefit of a is his Companions. but All¯h now gave a new one. “was mentioned before All¯h’s Messenger. “Did you cast a a glance at her. The a man replied: “Yes. informing him that he had contracted a marriage with an ans¯r woman and wanted him to contribute toward the dowry payment.” “For what dower did you marry her. Having overcome them [the enemies] and taken them captives. It is in this had¯ that one finds it permissible to cast a glance at the woman whom is one intends to marry (note 2424). . . “For four Uqiyas? It seems as if you dig out silver from the side of the mountain (that is why you are prepared to pay so much dower). . All¯h. He told her: “I have decided to keep you away from me. and Muhammad talked to her. Most High. the daughter of one Jaun. Then. sent down a [the above verse]” (3432).” Muhammad asked.” They saw each other. But this permission actually originated in a different incident. .” Then Muhammad retired with his host and told him: “Sahl.” All¯h’s Messenger went out until he came to her to give u a a “her a proposal of marriage”. A believer came to Muhammad. based on an old moral code. for there is something in the eyes of the Ans¯rs. who are captured by the Muslims in jih¯d. a CAST A GLANCE AT THE WOMAN YOU WANT TO MARRY It is permissible to cast a glance at the woman one wants to marry. There is a possibility that we may send you to an expedition where you may get booty. We have nothing which we should give you. A a Qur¯nic verse fortifies this position: “Also prohibited are women already married except a those whom your right hands possess” (4:24).” a Meanwhile the Prophet had arrived at his own conclusion. She was brought and she “stayed in u the fortresses of Ban¯ S¯’idah. so he commanded an official of his named Ab¯ Usaid to send a messenger to the woman. or holy war. the a Companions of All¯h’s Messenger seemed to refrain from having intercourse with captive a women because of their husbands being polytheists. Ab¯ Sa’¯ reports that “at the Battle of Hunain All¯h’s Messenger sent u id a an army to Aut¯s .” By now a the Prophet was an important man in Arab politics. “For four Uqiyas. from “head to foot”.” the man replied. She told him: “I seek refuge with All¯h from you. She was “sitting with her head downcast.

and thou may receive a any thou pleasest. When he intended to leave. he is allowed to have his other wives around. is how many nights one should spend with one’s newly wed wife? The answer is seven days if she is a virgin. But while he is in bed with one of them. and there is no blame in thee if thou invite one whose turn thou hast set aside” (Qur¯n 33:51). . one of the servants of Muhammad. whereupon she [’Aisha] said: it is Zainab. . one of the wives of Muhammad. So All¯h’s Messenger “allotted two days to ’Aisha” (3451). she a is a made over her day to ’Aisha. one wife could make over her day to another. Though a husband should divide his days equally among all his wives.” When the morning prayer was announced. . Ab¯ Bakr came to get Muhammad. taunted Muhammad: “It seems to me that your Lord hastens to satisfy your desire” (3453). . There was an altercation a between the two until their voices became loud. tells us that when Muhammad married her. He [the Holy Prophet] stretched his hand towards her [Zainab]. for example. come u a for prayer. Eventually the rule of rotation was withdrawn altogether by a special dispensation of All¯h: “Thou may defer the turn of any of them that thou pleasest. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) DEPORTMENT TOWARD ONE’S WIVES Ticklish problems arise if one has more than one wife and if one marries often. It was the night in the house of ’Aisha. he said: “Messenger of All¯h. Umm Salama. when Zainab came there. In order to be impartial. One wife told him: “If I had the option in this I would not have allowed anyone to have precedence over me” (3499). and three days if she is a widow (3443-3449). All¯h is very accommodating. ’Aisha. hearing their voices. Anas. Ah¯d¯ 3451-3452 tell us that when Saud¯ became old. a But sometimes the Prophet himself would ask a wife to forgo her day. she “caught hold of his garment”. All¯h’s Apostle withdrew his hand. NIGHT SESSIONS We have one important had¯ which provides another indulgence to the believers and is also throws some light on the Prophet’s sexual code.54 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. and throw dust in their mouths” (3450). he spent three nights with her. for whose benefit He really a a spoke. One of the problems. reports that “all the wives of the Messenger of All¯h used to gather every night in the house of one where a he [the Apostle] had to come . But the Prophet told her: “If you wish I can stay with you for a week. a believer should visit his wives by turn. but then I shall have to stay for a week with all my wives” (3443-3445).

they also swelled his harem.’ He said: ‘A virgin or one previously married?’ I said: ‘with one previously married.” but it is here used metaphorically in the sense of getting ready for the husband’s company (note 1926). Saf¯ iyya. which literally means “to remove the hairs on the private parts. have you married?’ I said. or “who might amuse you and you might amuse her” (3464).” the Prophet tells us (3471). SAF¯ IYYA Muhammad’s wars and raids not only fed his coffers. was the wife of the chief of a Jewish clan inhabiting Khaibar. woman would have never acted unfaithfully towards the husband.’ whereupon he said: ‘Why did you not marry a virgin with whom you could sport?’ ” (3458). and his Companions wanted to hurry to their homes. Once the Prophet and his party returned from an expedition rather late. Anas narrates: “We encountered the people at sunrise when .55 ON MARRYING A VIRGIN In other ah¯d¯ the Prophet touches upon the excellence of marrying a virgin (3458a is. THE ORIGINAL SIN “Had it not been for Eve. Muhammad’s custom was to make surprise attacks. The translator tells us that the Arabic word for “get herself clean” is tastahidda. a beautiful girl of seventeen years. and the woman whose husband had been away may get herself clean. TASTAHIDDA Muhammad also made effective use of what are known in literary criticism as vulgar expressions. Khaibar was invaded in the same fashion. and when you enter. MUHAMMAD’S MARRIAGES Some incidents relating to the Prophet’s marriages with Saf¯ iyya (3325-3329) and Zainab hint Jahsh are mentioned (3330-3336). But the Prophet told them to wait till “the woman with dishevelled hair may comb it. 3464). you have the enjoyment” (3462). J¯bir reports: “The Apostle of All¯h said: ‘J¯bir. a a a ‘yes.

were taken in and treated as part of the war booty. p. but you shall not sell her for money. Many other women. Akhtab. “Torture him until you extract a what he has. In the morning. al-’Aww¯m. many people were butchered. And she shall put off her captive’s garb. He replied: “I was afraid for you with this woman for you have killed her father. since you have humiliated her” (Deuteronomy 21:10-14). MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) they had come out with their axes. and there were gathered the prisoners of war.” Muhammad prayed for him: “O God.56 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. 515). before them evil will be the morning for those who were warned” (Qur¯n 37:177). was more considerate. and be her husband. 4 a Anas continues: “She first fell to the lot of Dihya in the spoils of war. ¯ ¯ 4 . and shall remain in your house and bewail her father and mother a full month. Then the apostle delivered him to Muhammad b. and she shall shave her head and pare her nails. The latter “kindled a fire with flint and steel a on his chest until he was nearly dead. They shouted in surprise: Muhammad has come along with his force! The Messenger of All¯h a said: Khaibar shall face destruction” (4438). you shall let her go where she will. Muhammad kept her as his Kin¯na was tortured in order to make him reveal his hidden treasure. 5 ¯ RIHANA AND JUWAIR¯ IYA Saf¯ iyya was no exception. which enjoined the believers to wait until the beginning of the next menstrual cycle in their captive women. Gabriel or no Gabriel. among them Rih¯na and Juwair¯ a iya. and you take them captive. “We took Khaibar by force. and she shall be your wife. whom Muhammad often followed. the chief of the Quraiza and al-Naz¯ was one ir. and till recently she was in unbelief. her husband. and even took her to his bed the same night her husband was killed. 517).) But Anas adds that people “praised her in the presence of All¯h’s Messenger and said: ‘We have not a seen the like of her among the captives of war’ ” (3329). Kin¯na. Ab¯ Ayy¯b took it upon himself u u to guard him. and her people. Her husband. The Mosaic law is: “When you go forth to war against your enemies. Muhammad used to see Gabriel in his form. of them. and see among the captives a beautiful woman. Muhammad saw him and asked him what he was doing there. After her husband was beheaded in cold blood along with eight hundred u other male members of her tribe in the genocide at Medina. and the Lord your God gives them into your hands. in violation of his own command. you shall not treat her as a slave. a In any case.” (Incidentally. spades and strings driving their cattle along. Saf¯ iyya. preserve Ab¯ Ayy¯b as he spent the night preserving me” (S¯ u u irat Ras ul All ah. after that you may go in to her. When the Prophet was passing the night with Saf¯ iyya in a tent. ¯ ¯ 5 In a case like Saf¯ iyya’s even Moses. There is even a Qur¯nic verse relating to a Muhammad’s sudden sweep on the valley and the fate of its people: “But when it descends [nazala] into the open space. and many others were taken prisoners. Dihya was strikingly handsome.” according to Anas. and you have desire for her and would take her for yourself as wife. then you shall bring her home to your house. p. was put to a cruel death (3325). Rih¯na was a Jewish girl of the a Ban¯ Quraizah.” Muhammad ordered al-Zubayr b. Then. if you have no delight in her. the daughter of Huyayy b. so I was afraid for you on her account. Maslama and he struck off his head” (S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. Muhammad took her away from Dihya.

when a matter has been decided by God and His Apostle to have any option about their decision. he offered to divorce her. “Retain thou in wedlock thy wife. who had seen her father. When Zaid heard about it. a pp. 493. and uncle killed. “The Messenger of All¯h made a raid upon Ban¯ Mustaliq while they were a u unaware and their cattle were having a drink at the water. Zaid. If anyone disobeys God and His Apostle. There was another girl. named Zainab. again Jewish. and He revealed His plan. fearing a public scandal. for I knew that he [Muhammad] would see her as I saw her. and therefore. but Muhammad. iya a In the division of the booty. a Juwair¯ another of these unfortunate girls. present and future. saw her in a state of seminudeness. ’Aisha’s reaction when she saw this beautiful girl being led into the presence of Muhammad is recounted in these words: “As soon as I saw her at the door of my room. to Muhammad thus: “We joined her in marriage to thee. She poisoned the roasted lamb she was ordered to prepare for Muhammad. was the daughter of the chief of the Banu’l iya. man or woman. She was captured in the fifth or sixth year of the Hijra along with two hundred other women. Juwair¯ was at that time about twenty.” and for hiding in his heart “that which God was about to make manifest. as good as his own daughter-in-law.” And indeed. whose affair was not cruel but scandalous. vol. and she was immediately put to death. Mustaliq. He killed those who fought and imprisoned others. in order that in future there may be no difficulty to the believers in the matter of marriage with the wives of their adopted sons. ¯ ¯ . and was aroused. when Muhammad saw Juwair¯ iya he paid her ransom and took her for his wife.” 6 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. iya and she became the seventh wife of the Prophet. We shall touch upon this massacre again in our discussion of jih¯d. he is indeed clearly on a wrong path. He was saved. p. He set her ransom a price at nine ounces of gold. On that very day. husband. told him to keep his wife for himself. She was the wife of Muhammad’s adopted son. ZAINAB BINT JAHSH Here we shall mention another Zainab. according to some authorities (Tabaq¯t. At this point All¯h spoke and decided the matter (Qur¯n 33:36-40). but it is more fitting that thou should fear God”. Suspecting something wrong. a 6 the Prophet’s biographer.” He now also addressed Himself to the Muslims of all generations: “It is not fitting for a believer. he captured Juwair¯ bint al-H¯ris” (4292). The whole story is given by Ibn Ish¯q. in the eyes of the Arabs. Muhammad went to her house when her husband was away. I detested her. beyond the power of her relatives to pay.” All¯h told Muhammad: “Thou feared the a people. Muhammad spat out the very first morsel. II. He chided a a Muhammad for telling Zaid.57 concubine. 252-255). she fell to the lot of S¯bit ibn Qays.

’Abdullah. the divorce becomes operative. According to the Shias. the Prophet had twenty-two wives. once a man says the word tal¯q a a three times.some say ninety . Somewhat later. or whether three times at one sitting is enough. The a marriage ordered from above was celebrated with unusual festivity. Ab¯ Bakr. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) Thus reassured. and when she is pure he may divorce her” (3485). after three successive menses. the limitation of wives to four at a time was not unduly self-denying. the future Khal¯ divorced his wife while she was in a state of menses. With such easy conditions of divorce. two of whom were bondswomen. it is forbidden to divorce a woman during her menstrual period (3473-3490).58 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6.times. According to the translator. who do not count. “traditions are not lacking in which three pronouncements at one sitting were held as irrevocable divorce even during the time of the prophet” (note 1933). . People in his day called him the Divorcer. it now means annulment a a of marriage by the pronouncement of certain words. But opinions differ as to whether it has to be pronounced on three separate occasions. and friend of Muhammad. but that was a special divine dispensation for him alone. married seventy . the son of ’Umar. “All¯h’s Messenger said to Zaid to make a mention to her about him” (3330). Wives were constantly replaced. The procedure is not difficult. exclusive of slave concubines. the son of ’Al¯ and grandson i of Muhammad. but individual wives can be replaced through tal¯q. The other believers are allowed only four wives at a time. the latter ordered: “He [’Abdullah] should take her back. Yet there are certain restrictions. Muhammad. and ’Umar.” but in Isl¯mic law. Hasan. Muhammad made Zaid himself go to his wife with his marriage proposal. The total of four wives at one time cannot be exceeded. THREE PRONOUNCEMENTS The word tal¯q has to be pronounced three times before tal¯q becomes operative (3491a a 3493). adviser. had children by sixteen u wives besides those from concubines. When ’Umar mentioned this to ifa. DIVORCE (Tal¯q) a Tal¯q literally means “undoing the knot. a senior Compana ion. ’Abdar-Rahm¯n. “All¯h’s Messenger a gave no better wedding feast than the one he did on the occasion of his marriage with Zainab” (3332). The marriage and divorce laws of Isl¯m derive from the Prophet’s own practice and a pronouncements. For example.

. which in this case is either a fast for two months or the feeding of sixty poor men and women. ¯a There was another form of separation called Il¯’ (“to swear”). and according to some traditions. This was a customary vow of abstinence among the Arabs. the host said: “Behold my two wives and choose one you like the best. on emigrating to Medina. “When a man declares his wife as unlawful for himself that is an oath which must be atoned . . The purpose of the abstinence could be penitential or devotional. In this sense of the term. a In due course. pp. There is in the Messenger of All¯h a model pattern for you” (3494-3495). ¯a The oath of Il¯ was sometimes taken to penalize the wife and extort ransom from her. the husband swore an oath to abstain from sexual intercourse with his wife. Life of Mahomet. ’Abdar-Rahm¯n was adopted a ¯ as a brother in faith-in accordance with the arrangement made by by Sa’d. a a i. Muhammad condemned divorce by zih¯r (Qur¯n 58: 1-5) and allowed a husband who had taken the vow to go a a back to his wife. or the vow might be taken in a fit of anger. the husband vowed a a that his wife would be unto him as the back (zahr) of his mother and then stayed away from her for a specified period. the believers are indeed fortunate in having a “model pattern” in an example provided by the Prophet. Wives could be easily disposed of by gifting or divorce. II. the two forms of separation died away in Isl¯m. a ¯a the Arabs regarded Il¯ as a form of divorce. Muhammad forbade this (Qur¯n 2:226). Muslims also took it during the period of fasting. son of Rabi. 272-273. Muhammad himself had to undergo separation from his wives for a period which lasted 7 K¯tib al-W¯qid¯ quoted by W. For example. “that a which covers a sin”). The broken vow could be expiated by making a kaff¯rah (literally. if not. In this form. The broken vow could be expiated. .” One wife was divorced on the spot and gifted away 7 ¯ ¯ ¯ ZIHAR AND ILA’ There were two other forms of separation not amounting to legal divorce prevalent ¯a among the Arabs at the time of Muhammad: zih¯r and Il¯’. In the pre-Isl¯mic period. vol. Muir. a MUHAMMAD’S SEPARATION FROM HIS WIVES ¯a Il¯’ is a temporary separation from one’s wife. but it did not fully dissolve the marriage. A man who had taken such a vow was to go a back to his wife without any blame to himself. The same formula was also used as a form of divorce. In zih¯r. Muhammad to join every Emigrant to an ans¯r in brotherhood. .59 It is no wonder that women had no sanctity. As they sat together at a supper. the marriage was ipso facto legally dissolved at the end of four months.

Muhammad observed a rough-and-ready rule of rotation. He told him “how we the people of Quraish had domination over women but when we came to Medina we found people whom their women dominated. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) twenty-nine days. In fact. however. The Sah¯ Muslim narrates this incident in several ah¯d¯ but before ih a is. a a kept himself away from his wives. I and Ab¯ a u Bakr and the believers are with you. we take them up. and very soon everybody knew about it. She wept bitterly. if All¯h’s Messenger would command me to strike her neck. “O Rah¯b. and a if you had divorced them. I entered the mosque. a a I would certainly do that. in the eyes of the believers this rumor was more newsworthy and significant than the reports that Medina was soon to be attacked by Ghass¯n (the Arab auxiliaries of a Byzantium). Hafza. You should look to your own receptacle [Hafza]. “You know that All¯h’s Messenger does not love a you. told ’Aisha.” Muhammad relaxed. a As ’Umar entered. seek permission for me from All¯h’s a a Messenger. verily All¯h is with you. let us provide some background information. a “I have nothing to do with you. and had I not been your father he would have divorced you. Muhammad was very angry. and he told his wives that he would have nothing to do with them. but instead she found him with Mary. and jeering.” He also told him: “Messenger of All¯h. Gabriel. excitement. “In my room. In fact. Soon the harem was filled with gossip. So our women began to learn from their women.” he told Rah¯b. the beautiful Coptic concubine. In visiting his numerous wives. One day Muhammad was supposed to be with Hafza. and found the people striking the ground with pebbles and saying: All¯h’s Messenger has divorced his wives. and soon the news was afloat that he was divorcing them all. but he insisted. he saw “the signs of anger on his [Muhammad’s] face. He separated himself from them.” ’Aisha told him to mind his own business. what trouble do you feel from your wives. but he wanted Hafza to keep the incident a secret. He was admitted.” ’Umar next sought out Hafza and chided her. His angels. “I went on talking to him until the signs of anger disappeared .” she shouted. promised never to visit Mary again. The request was disregarded. al-Khatt¯b (Hafza’s father) reports: “When All¯h’s Apostle is.” he told her.” so he tried to calm him down. First he asked ’Aisha if she had “gone to the extent of giving trouble to All¯h’s Messenger.60 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. Then ’Umar sought permission to be admitted into the presence of Muhammad. Muhammad’s doorman. Mika’il. trying to pacify her. Muhammad’s Quraish wives detested Mary and were jealous of the servile wretch. Muhammad. By All¯h. the days in his life were known by the name of the wife he was visiting.” ’Umar decided a to find out what was actually happening. I think that All¯h’s Messenger is under the impression that I have come for a the sake of Hafza. Hafza was furious. on my day and in my own bed. who had even given Muhammad a son. In a long had¯ ’Umar b.

” He told the two fathers: “They [his wives and their daughters] are around me as you see. u went to ’Aisha and slapped her on the neck. they broadcast it.” All¯h warned them. and he laughed. and incorporating ’Umar’s assurance that all the angels and believers supported him: “O Prophet!” said All¯h. asking for extra money. . and it was said. All¯h. . the month consists of twenty-nine days” (3507-3511). had¯ 3507). and the angels after that will back him up. . or to those charged with authority among them. In this new mood. Now ’Umar stood at the door of the mosque and called out at the top of his voice: “The Messenger of All¯h has not divorced his wives. and by now only twenty-nine days had passed. These must have occurred in the early days at Medina.61 on his face . a is OPTION OF DIVORCE DIFFERENT FROM DIVORCE It seems there were other occasions of domestic discord. ¯ The matter blew over. freeing him from his oath respecting Mary. [but] he visited them.” All¯h also told the Prophet’s wives in no uncertain a terms that “his Lord if he divorces you will give him in exchange wives better than you. “Why do you prohibit thyself what God a has made lawful to you. the proper investigators would indeed know it” (Qur¯n 4:83. Once Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar went to Muhammad and found him “sitting sad and u silent with his wives around him. “God strikes out a parable to those who misbelieve: the wife of Noah and the wife of Lot. the Prophet also gave his wives the option of a goodly departure if . but they betrayed them: and they availed them nothing against God. and the righteous of the a believers. to which Muhammad replied: “At times. The Holy Prophet “had taken an oath of remaining away from them [his wives] for a month.for your hearts have swerved! .” Then Ab¯ Bakr “got up. . and ’Umar stood up and slapped Hafza” (3506). He is the sovereign.” A verse chiding his followers for so a readily believing in rumors also descended on Muhammad: “And if any matter pertaining to peace or alarm comes within their ken. when Muhammad lacked funds. . and they became his wives again.” ’Aisha mischievously reminded the Prophet that it was not yet one month but only twenty-nine days. they were under two of our righteous servants. All¯h has already ordained for a you the dissolution of your oaths. threatening his wives with divorce. particularly ’Aisha and Hafza. ‘Enter the Fire with those who enter’ ” (Qur an 66:1-10). the famous verses descended on the Prophet. verily.” All¯h also told them that if they a misbehaved. But if they had only referred it to the Apostle. in the following terms: “If ye both a turn repentant unto God. some of them centering round money.but if you back each other up against him. being the Prophet’s wives would avail them nothing on the Day of Judgment. and Gabriel.” ’Umar narrates. On this occasion. craving to please thy wives? .

one of Muhammad’s wives. It normally lasts four months and ten days but ends sooner if the woman gives birth to a child. the woman can contract another marriage (3536-3538).” a She was very angry and went to Muhammad.” But he mercifully helped her to find another husband. MOURNING A woman whose husband dies must abstain from all adornment during the ’idda period. and could get rid of their wives so easily. u a Muhammad advised against them both.e. but when it is really intended. Ab¯ Jahm and Mu’¯wiya. She sent for some perfume and rubbed it on her cheeks. the threat of divorce hung heavily on Muslim women.62 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. but in the case of the a death of the husband it is permissible for four months and ten days’ ” (3539). Thus.” NO MAINTENANCE ALLOWANCE FOR A DIVORCEE F¯tima hint Quais was divorced by her husband “when he was away from home. and the latter was poor. I need no perfume but for a the fact that I heard All¯h’s Messenger say. ‘It is not permissible for a woman believing in a All¯h and the Hereafter to mourn for the dead beyond three days. ’Umar ruled that husbands should provide their divorced wives with a maintenance allowance during the period of ’idda on the ground that the true purpose of the Prophet’s words had been misunderstood by F¯tima. the father of Umm Hab¯ a iba. who told her: “There is no lodging and maintenance allowance for a woman who has been given irrevocable divorce. he proposed the name of Us¯ma b. “We cannot abandon the Book of All¯h and the Sunn¯h of our a a a Apostle for the words of a woman” (3524). a mere woman. Having to provide an allowance for four months at the most was not very difficult. the son of his slave and adopted son. In their place. for the former did “not put down his staff from his shoulder” (i. died. The wives chose the latter.. Zaid. a The moral of these ah¯d¯ (3498-3506) as drawn by the translator is that “mere giving a is option to women to divorce does not make the divorce effective. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) they “cared more for this world and its adornments than for All¯h and His Apostle and a the abode of the Hereafter” (Qur¯n 33:28-29). since husbands had almost no fear of any future burden. Ab¯ u Sufy¯n. he beat his wives). Once ’idda has ended. a Later on a more generous sentiment prevailed. but mourning for other relatives should not last for more than three days (3539-3552). observing: “By All¯h. Zaid (3512). ’Idda is a period of waiting during which a woman cannot remarry. . She had two suitors.

Slaves continued to suffer under the same old disabilities. names them all in his Rauzat-us-Safa. . but this closes the chapter. Zubair. a close companion of the Prophet. both male and female. which is on business transactions . after all. for unless he has four witnesses. you would lash him. Mirkhond.a slave. tribute. the wife can solemnly deny the accusation four times and then invoke the wrath of All¯h on herself if her accuser is telling the truth. he shall have to consume anger. and booty became the main props of the new Arab aristocracy. the Prophet’s fifteenth-century biographer. and if he speaks about it. They were the property of their master (saiyid).” but technically it stands for that particular form of oath which brings about separation between husband and wife with the help of four oaths and one curse. And a a verse descended on him (Qur¯n 24:6) which gives us the practice of li’¯n. or it may be that the subject really belongs to the next book. One of a them must be lying. or it may be that emancipating a slave was considered a form of tal¯q. was no more than a chattel. But if the witnesses are not always forthcoming. and they are wife and husband no more (3553-3577). But the fact remains that Muhammad.63 INVOKING CURSE (Li’¯n) a If a man finds his wife in adultery. solve this problem” (3564). Pre-Isl¯mic Arabs. and if he keeps quiet. nor can he make an accusation against his wife. A husband’s solitary evidence can be accepted if he bears witness four times with an oath by All¯h that he is solemnly telling the truth and then invokes the curse of All¯h a a upon himself if he is lying. which literally a means “freeing” or “undoing the knot”. you will kill him. never imagined that the institution of slavery could take on such massive proportions. what should he do? This was the dilemma confronting the believers. for that is forbidden. The Prophet himself possessed at least fifty-nine slaves at one stage or another. which is most likely in such a case. Modern Muslim writers trying to boost Isl¯m as a humane ideology make much of the a sayings of Muhammad on the emancipation (’itq) of slaves. This may be due to a faulty method of classification. The fact is that slavery. he cannot kill the adulterous man. An ans¯r posed the problem to a Muhammad: “If a person finds his woman along with a man.” Muhammad supplicated God: “All¯h. sanctioned slavery on an unprecedented scale. a few chapters at the end of the book dealing with marriage and divorce are on slaves. The word a a literally means “oath. EMANCIPATING A SLAVE For some unexplained reason. and if he kills. even in a their wildest dreams. besides thirty-eight servants. owned one thousand slaves when he died. he receives eighty stripes for making a false accusation against the chastity of a woman. by introducing the concept of religious war and by denying human rights to non-Muslims. Similarly.

he said: “Bring her to me. he saw the time when the meek and the lowly would inherit the earth as a portent of the approaching end of the world.” according to him (4). The a Qur¯n (S¯ra 4:3. Slaves could gain a their freedom in several ways. mortgaging them. Hiz¯m “freed one hundred slaves” (225) even im a before he became a Muslim. In the first.” She was brought. wanted to free her. EMANCIPATION OF SLAVES The emancipation of slaves was not unknown in pre-Isl¯mic Arabia. Whatever they acquired became the property of their masters. was that they were ransomed by their relatives. the freeing of a slave was an act of charity on the part of the master. And though the slaves fought for their Muslim masters. One way. Slavery was interwoven with the Isl¯mic a u a laws of sale. When Muhammad was consulted. Slaves had no property rights. In any case.these are some of the signs of Doom. the master declared that on his death his slaves would be free.” Muhammad asked: “Who am I?” “Thou art the Messenger . barefooted would become the chiefs of the people . 23:6) permitted this. they were not entitled to the spoils of war according to Muslim religious law. hiring them out. slaves who were not ransomed by their relatives obtained their master’s permission to earn their ransom by work. We have already seen how Hak¯ b. and a very common one. In the second. and marriage.64 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. Someone once slapped his maid-slave in anger and then. We have also observed that it was an old custom among the Arabs of more pious disposition to will that their slaves would be freed at their death. in contrition. “When the slave-girl will give birth to her master. of course. 4:24. when the naked. a practice which was opposed in some cases by Muhammad because he did not want such emancipations to take place at the expense of the heirs and relatives of the masters. but this did not make him into a Messiah of the slaves. Another was when a master granted his slave a free and unconditional emancipation (’itq). a slave should not seek his emancipation by running away. 4:25. The master had the right to live in concubinage with his female slaves if they confessed Isl¯m or belonged to the “People of the Book”. however. lending them. not a matter of justice. inheritance. On the other hand. There were two other forms of emancipation: tadbir and kitabah. Muhammad asked her: “Where is All¯h?” She a replied: “He is in the heaven. “The slave who fled from his master committed an act of infidelity so long as he would not return to him. WHICH SLAVES DESERVE EMANCIPATION? Only a believing slave deserves freedom. selling them. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) who could dispose of them as he liked. To Muhammad. On the whole. gifting them away.” says Muhammad (129). Muhammad’s response to the practice was positive.

for the right of inheritance vests with one who emancipates. wanted to retain the right of inheritance for himself. WHO INHERITS A SLAVE’S PROPERTY? Even if a slave’s person was freed.” But the owner. but must not be overburdened” (3582). One could also emancipate a jointly owned slave to the extent of one’s share in him.65 of All¯h. and the slave “will be required to work to pay for his freedom. nor can he offer himself as an ally without the permission of his former owner. Thus there is merit in freeing a slave. Bar¯ ira.” Muhammad then admonished: “What has happened to the people that they lay down conditions which are not found in the Book of All¯h” (3585). Muhammad gave his verdict: “Grant her freedom. For the rest a fair price for the slave was to be fixed. “A Muslim who emancipates a Muslim [slave]. “When a slave looks to the welfare of his master and worships All¯h well. she is a a believing woman” (1094). a OTHER DISABILITIES A freed slave is subjected to several other disabilities. One “who took the freed slave as an ally without the consent of his previous master. a SLAVERY HAS ITS OWN REWARD Beyond all that may be said or done. and emancipate her. It has its own reward. ’Aisha was ready to help a slave-girl.” she answered. he a has two rewards for him” (4097). even his private parts a for his” (3604). Muhammad gave his judgment in favor of ’Aisha: “Buy her. though ready to free her for cash money. any property he might have or come to have was inherited by the emancipator (3584-3595). All¯h will save from Fire every limb of his for every limb of the slave. the condition of a slave is no great evil. He cannot seek any new alliance. there is upon him the curse of All¯h and that of His angels and that of the whole mankind” (3600). . to purchase her freedom on the condition that “I shall have the right in your inheritance.

of All¯h and the Sah¯ [a small book or pamphlet that was tied to the scabbard of a ifa his sword] tells a lie. and it also records the words of the prophet . . who thinks that we [the members of the Prophet’s family] read anything else besides the book. ’Al¯ the Prophet’s son-in-law. . He who innovates or gives protection to an innovator. there is a curse of All¯h and that of his angels a and that of the whole humanity upon him” (3601). i. MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE ( AL-NIK AH AND AL-TAL AQ) PROPER READING FOR MUHAMMAD’S DESCENDANTS We close the “Book of Marriage and Divorce” by quoting one of the very last ah¯da ¯ It is on a different subject but interesting. says: “He is. . This Sah¯ contains problems pertaining to the ages of the camels ifa and the recompense of injuries. .66 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6.

He forbade “selling ahead for years and selling of fruits before they become ripe” (3714). Transactions with the help of documents (probably the hundi or bill of exchange system). his injunctions became state policy. so his views on the subject should be of interest. During Muhammad’s own lifetime.Chapter 7 Business Transactions.” reports Sulaim¯n (3652). Muhammad also disallowed “futures” transactions. Let us remind ourselves that Muhammad in his pre-prophetic days was a merchant. Inheritances. ’Abdullah im reports: “I saw people being beaten during the lifetime of All¯h’s Messenger in case they a bought the food grain in bulk and then sold them at that spot before taking it to their places” (3650). Vows and Oaths The ninth book is the “Book of Business Transactions” (al-Buyu’). The injunction was implemented with the help of the police. “I saw the sentinels snatching these documents from the people. “He who buys food grains should not sell it until he has taken possession of it” (3640). SPECULATION FORBIDDEN Muhammad forbids speculation. Because of their speculative nature. a 67 . were also made unlawful. Gifts. as the control of Arabia passed into his hands. Sal¯ b. Bequests.


Muhammad also forbade outbidding. “A person should not enter into a transaction when his brother is already making a transaction and he should not make a proposal of marriage when his brother has already made a proposal except when he gives permission” (3618). He also forbade brokerage, “the selling of goods by a townsman on behalf of a man of the desert” (3621).

Muhmmad recognized the contract system. Unless otherwise laid down in the contract, “he who buys a tree after it has been fecunded, its fruits belongs to one who sells it . . . . and he who buys a slave, his property belongs to one who sells him” (3704).

Muhammad also forbade the leasing of land. “He who has land should cultivate it, but if he does not find it possible, he should lend it to his Muslim brother, but he should not accept rent from him” (3719).

Several ah¯d¯ (3758-3763) show that Muhammad’s own business practices could be a is sharp. ’Abdullah, the son of ’Umar, reports that “when Khaibar had been conquered, it came under the sway of All¯h, that of his Messenger and that of the Muslims” (3763). a Muhammad made an agreement with the Jews of Khaibar that they could retain the datepalms and the land on the condition that they worked them with their own wealth (seeds, implements) and gave “half of the yield to All¯h’s Messenger” (3762). Out of this half, a “All¯h’s Apostle got the fifth part,” and the rest was “distributed” (3761). This lends a credence to the common observation that those who control the funds, whether in the name of All¯h or the state or the poor, are apt to spend them first on themselves. a These acquisitions enabled Muhammad to give each of his wives 100 wasqs (1 wasq = about 425 English pounds), 80 wasqs of dates, and 20 wasqs of barley per year. When ’Umar became the Khal¯ he distributed the land and gave the wives of All¯h’s Apostle ifa a the option of taking the land or the yearly wasqs. Their reactions to this offer differed. ’Aisha and Hafza, two wives of the Prophet, “opted for land and water” (3759).


Muhammad also “forbade the charging of price of the dog, and earnings of a prostitute and sweets offered to a K¯hin [soothsayer]” (3803). He said that “the worst earning is the a earning of a prostitute, the price of a dog and the earning of a cupper” (3805). Muhammad had a great dislike for dogs. He said: “It is your duty to kill the jet-black [dog] having two spots [on the eyes], for it is a devil” (3813). ’Abdullah, ’Umar’s son, tells us that the Prophet “ordered to kill dogs, and he sent men to the corners of Medina that they should be killed . . . . and we did not spare any dog that we did not kill” (3810, 3811). Later on, on representation, an exception was made in the case of dogs meant for hunting and for protecting the herds. With the exception of these dogs, anyone who kept a dog “lost two q¯ at [the name of a measure] of reward every day” (3823). ir¯ Muhammad also forbade the sale of wine, carcasses, swine, and idols. “May All¯h the a Exalted and Majestic destroy the Jews; when All¯h forbade the use of fat of the carcass a for them [see Leviticus 3:17], they melted it, and then sold it and made use of its price” (3840).

In some matters, the Prophet was modern. He disapproved of the barter system and in its place stood for money-exchange. The collector of the revenues from Khaibar once brought Muhammad some fine dates. Muhammad asked whether all the dates of Khaibar were of such fine quality. The collector said: “No. We got one s¯ [of fine dates] for two a s¯ s [of inferior dates].” Muhammad disapprovingly replied: “Don’t do that; rather sell the a inferior quality of dates for dirhams [money], and then buy the superior quality with the help of dirhams” (3870).

Muhammad also forbade rib¯, which includes both usury and interest. He “cursed the a accepter of interest and its payer, and one who records it, and the two witnesses”; and he said: “They are all equal” (3881). Though he forbade interest, Muhammad himself sent Ab¯ Bakr to the Qainuq¯ tribe u a of Medina with a message bidding them to “lend to God at good interest,” using the very words of the Qur¯n, “to lend to God a goodly loan” (5:12). When they rebuffed him, their a fate was sealed, and they were driven away from their homes.


The next three books are the “Book of Inheritances” (al-fara’id), the “Book of Gifts” (al-hib¯t), and the “Book of Bequests” (al-was¯ a iyya). In some ways, they are interrelated. The laws deriving from them are complicated, and we need not go beyond mentioning them here.

Anything given as a gift or charity should not be taken back. ’Umar had donated a horse in the Path of All¯h (i.e., for jih¯d). He found that the horse was languishing in a a the hands of the recipient, who was very poor, and considered buying it back. “Don’t buy it back . . . for he who gets back the charity is like a dog which swallows its vomit,” Muhammad told him (3950).

Muhammad favored waqf, i.e., the dedication of the corpus of a property to All¯h. a ’Umar told Muhammad: “I have acquired land in Khaibar [the land of the defeated Jews, which had now been conferred on the Companions]. I have never acquired property more valuable for me than this, so what do you command me to do with it? Thereupon, All¯h’s a Apostle said: If you like, you may keep the corpus intact and give its produce as sadaqa . . . . ’Umar devoted it to the poor, to the nearest kin, and to the emancipation of slaves, and in the way of All¯h and guests” (4006). a

The estate of a deceased person can be distributed after certain obligations, such as funeral expenses and debts incurred by the deceased, have been met. A person who professes a religion other than Isl¯m cannot inherit anything from a Muslim, and vice versa a (3928). Another principle of inheritance is that “the male is equal of the portion of two females” (3933). Muhammad says that one can will only one-third of one’s property; the remaining twothirds must go to the legal heirs. Muhammad visited Sa’d b. Ab¯ Waqq¯s, on his deathbed. i a Sa’d had only one daughter. He wanted to know whether he could will two-thirds or half of his property in sadaqa (charity). The Prophet replied: “Give one third, and that is quite

71 enough. To leave your heirs rich is better than to leave them poor, begging from people” (3991).

Muhammad was scrupulous about the debts of the deceased. That was the first charge on the property of a deceased person after the funeral expenses. In cases where the property was not sufficient to meet the debt obligations, money was raised through contributions. But when Muhammad became rich through conquest, he himself met these charges. “When All¯h opened the gateways of victory for him, he said: ‘I am nearer to the believers than a themselves, so if anyone dies leaving a debt, its payment is my responsibility, and if anyone leaves a property it goes to his heirs’ ” (3944).

On a certain Thursday when his illness took a serious turn, Muhammad said: “I make a will about three things: Turn out the polytheists from the territory of Arabia; show hospitality to the foreign delegations as I used to do.” The third the narrator forgot (4014). Muhammad also wanted to write a will in his last moments. “Come, I may write for you a document; you would not go astray after that,” he said, asking for writing materials. But ’Umar, who was present, said that the people already had the Qur¯n. “The Book a of All¯h is sufficient for us,” he asserted, and thus it was unnecessary to tax Muhammad a in his critical state. When those who were gathered around his bed then began to argue among themselves, Muhammad told them to “get up and go away” (4016). ’Umar might have been moved by genuine concern for the dying man, but the supporters of ’Al¯ later claimed that Muhammad in his last will had wanted to appoint ’Al¯ as his i i successor, and that ’Umar, in league with Ab¯ Bakr, had prevented him from doing so by u a dirty trick.

The twelfth and thirteenth books, on vows (al-nazar) and oaths (al-aiman), respectively, can be treated together. Muhammad discourages taking vows, for a vow “neither hastens anything nor defers anything” (4020). All¯h has no need of a man’s vows. A man once a took a vow to walk on foot to the Ka’ba, but Muhammad said that “All¯h is indifferent a to his inflicting upon himself chastisement,” and “commanded him to ride” (4029).

the a is number of wives increases from sixty to seventy and then to ninety (4066-4070). But he allows you to swear by God.” Muhammad says (4038). Some people once asked Muhammad to provide them with mounts. GIFTS. “But if he had said Insh¯’ All¯h he a a would have not failed. I cannot provide you a a mount. “Do not a a swear by idols. “God has already ordained for a you the dissolution of your oaths” (Qur¯n 66:2). “I will certainly a have intercourse with them during the night and everyone will give birth to a male child who will all be horsemen and fight in the cause of All¯h. THE “GOD WILLING” CLAUSE If one includes the proviso “God willing” (Insh¯ All¯h) when taking an oath. particularly if the oath-taker finds something better to do.72CHAPTER 7. BUSINESS TRANSACTIONS. I would break the vow and expiate it and do that which is better” (4044). a ABROGATION OF AN OATH All¯h Himself allowed abrogation of oaths if need be. and she gave birth to a premature child. by All¯h.” observes Muhammad. Sulaim¯n (Solomon) had sixty wives. something which Jesus forbade. the vow a a must be fulfilled. a I would not swear. INHERITANCES. a A vow which is in disobedience to All¯h or which is taken for un-Isl¯mic ends is not to a a be fulfilled. if He so wills. Muslim jurists differ as to whether a vow taken during the days of ignorance (i. he called them back and offered them camels to ride.” But immediately after they were gone.e. Some hold that such a vow should be a fulfilled if it is not against the teachings of Isl¯m. I would see better than it. but he found something else better than that. before one embraces Isl¯m) is binding or not. but if later on. Muhammad swore: “By All¯h. VOWS AND OA Muhammad also forbids believers to swear by L¯t or ’Uzz¯ or by their fathers. BEQUESTS. .” says Muhammad (4057).” says Muhammad (4043). “He who has to take an oath.. should do that which is better and break his oath. Muhammad explained: “So far as I am concerned. In other ah¯d¯ about the same story. nor by your father.” But only one of them became a pregnant. One day he said. he must take it by All¯h or keep quiet. “He who took an oath. a An oath can be broken.

(pl. only one-third is permissible in such cases. a fornication (Qur¯n 24:2-5). cutting off the right hand for theft (sariqah.. the right of revenge belongs to the victim’s heir. It is permitted only in cases where someone a has deliberately and unjustly wounded. Had ud) comprises punishments that are prescribed and defined in the Qur¯n and the ¯ a Had¯ These include stoning to death (rajm) for adultery (zin¯). fifteenth.e. the procedure of investigating them. mutilated. a his owner must be compensated with his full value. The same applies to the death of a Jew or a Christian. The Muslim law on crime and punishment is quite complicated. qis¯s. eighty lashes for slandering an “honorable” woman (husun).Chapter 8 Crime and Punishment (Qas¯mah. and taz¯ Hadd a ir. a ¯ Qis¯s. accusing her of adultery. they are not entitled to qis¯s according to most Muslim faq¯ (jurists). For the death of a woman. or retaliation. Had ud) a The fourteenth. and the punishments resultant from having committed them. eighty lashes for a a drinking wine (shurb). Muslim fiqh (law) divides punishment into three heads: hadd. and death by sword or crucifixion for robbery accompanied by murder. but since a slave is a piece of property. cutting a off of feet and hands for highway robbery. Though the Qur¯n a 73 . only half of the blood-price is due. a i. Qur¯n 5:38-39). If a slave is killed. As slaves and unbelievers are inferior in status to Muslims. and only if the injured and the guilty hold the same status. and sixteenth books all relate to the subject of crime: the forms and categories of crime. a ihs In cases of murder. or killed another. one hundred lashes for is. But the heir can forgo this right and accept the blood-price (diyah) in exchange. his heirs are not entitled to qis¯s and indemnity. The law also permits qis¯s. but according to one school. death for apostatizing from Isl¯m (irtid¯d).

“Once a a group of men apostatized from Isl¯m. But when we went to him to take his leave. I. and testify: “Our hands did not shed this blood. He gave us their names. His relatives accused the neighboring Jews.for giving up Isl¯m . CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (QAS AMAH. he said: If I had been in his place.” They replied: “All¯h’s a Messenger. the Had¯ alone provides a living source and image. 1 This was apparently the practice among the pre-Isl¯mic Arabs. This establishes their innocence. and the identity of his slayer is unknown. when a man is found slain.is death. HAD U D) gives the broad outline. QIS AS. Once a Muslim was found slain. Eight men of the tribe of ’Ukl became Muslims and emigrated to Medina. For example. Another had¯ specifically tells us that All¯h’s Messenger “retained the practice of is a Qas¯ma as it was in the pre-Isl¯mic days” (4127). Muhammad allowed them “to go to the camels of sadaqa 1 This injunction is based on the Old Testament. he said. ‘Don’t burn them in fire but put them to sword. ’Ali burnt them to death. neither did our eyes see it shed” (Deuteronomy 21:1-9). fifty persons from the nearest district take an oath that they neither killed the man nor knew who did it.” but in the terminology of the shar¯ i’ah. though not by burning. 1357). is ¯ QASAMAH The fourteenth book is the “Book of Oaths” (al-qas¯mah). Then Muhammad told them that “the Jews will exonerate themselves by fifty of them taking this oath. it is an oath of a particular type and taken under particular conditions. and he would be surrendered to you. wash their hands over the heifer. and the identity of his killer is unknown. When Ibn ’Abb¯s heard a a about it. He commanded us to burn two men of the Quraish if we encountered them. Muhammad told them: “Let fifty persons among you take oath for leveling the charge of murder against a person among them. break its neck.” They declined to take the oath since they had not witnessed the murder. The Mosaic law prescribes that when a man is found slain in open country. for to torture by fire is All ah’s prerogative’ ¯ ” (Sah¯ Bukh ar¯ Shar¯ sah¯ 1219). Kill an apostate but do not burn him for Fire is All¯h’s agency for a punishing the sinners” (Tirmiz¯ vol. I would have put them to sword for I have heard the apostle say. a a DEATH PENALTY FOR APOSTASY REBELLION One can accept Isl¯m freely. ih ¯ i if. but one cannot give it up with the same freedom.74 ¯ ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 8. Qas¯mah literally means a a “taking an oath. how can we accept the oath of unbelieving people?” Then Muhammad paid the bloodwite of one hundred camels for the slain man out of his own funds (4119-4125). ih . and Muhammad adopted a it. 2 i. The a punishment for apostasy . 2 Abu Huraira tells us: “The Apostle sent us on a raiding mission. The climate of Medina did not suit them. the elders of the town nearest to the slain man take a young heifer to a running brook.

and threw them on the stony ground until they died” (4130).” She made urgent pleas and was allowed to go a free after paying a money compensation to the victim’s next of kin (4151). took the camels and turned away from Isl¯m.” can be punished with the death penalty only a if he is a married adulterer. a The Prophet sent twenty ans¯rs after them with an expert tracker who could follow their a footprints. but technically. they killed the shepherds. and I a [Muhammad] am the Messenger of All¯h. or if he has killed someone (i. it is retaliatory punishment. When the case was brought to Muhammad. She had broken someone’s teeth.. The translator a tells us that there is almost a consensus of opinion among the jurists that apostasy from Isl¯m must be punished with death.75 and drink their milk and urine” (urine was considered curative). but they were not given water” (4132). according to many jurists). and put out their eyes. an eye for an eye. Those who think such a punishment is barbarous a should read the translator’s justification and rationale for it (note 2132). The apostates were brought back. which involved the sister of one of the Companions. or if he is a deserter from Isl¯m (4152-4155). It is the lex talionis of the Mosaic law. someone who is a Muslim. or they should be exiled” (Qur¯n 5:36).e. But in another case. A MUSLIM AND THE DEATH PENALTY A Muslim who “bears testimony to the fact that there is no God but All¯h. Away from the control of the Prophet. in Muslim a law. A Jew smashed the head of an ans¯r girl and she died. bloodwite was allowed. The translator gives us the verse from the Qur¯n according to which these men were a punished: “The just recompense for those who wage war against All¯h and His Messenger a and strive to make mischief in the land is that they should be murdered. and their feet. . he told her that “Qis¯s [retaliation] was a a command prescribed in the Book of All¯h. or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides. Muhammad commanded that a his head be crushed between two stones (4138). Another had¯ adds that while on the stony ground “they were asking for is water. “He [the Holy Prophet] got their hands cut off. a ¯ QIS AS Qis¯s literally means “tracking the footsteps of an enemy”.

PUNISMENT FOR THEFT ’Aisha reports that “All¯h’s Messenger cut off the hands of a thief for a quarter of a d¯ ar and upwards” (4175). and death for apostasy. Zaid. the penal law of Isl¯m. and All¯h is Mighty and Wise” (5:38). stoning to death for adultery. in a long two-page note. The translator assures us that after the punishment “There was a wonderful change in her soul” (note 2152). a woman committed some theft. At the time of the victorious expedition to Mecca. an exemplary punishment from All¯h. her hand was cut off. “Hers was a good repentance. causing her to have a miscarriage. the beloved of Muhammad. Ab¯ Huraira reports the Prophet as saying: “Let there be in¯ u the curse of All¯h upon the thief who steals an egg and his hand is cut off. a hundred stripes for fornication. The Had¯ merely confirms the Qur¯n. as we have already seen. who was just Eke a nonentity?” Muhammad brushed aside his objection. . a interceded in her behalf.” An eloquent relative of the woman pleaded for the cancellation of the indemnity. cut off their hand as a punishment for what they have done. is dealt with in the fifteenth book. nor made any noise.76 ¯ ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 8.” ’Aisha adds (4188). Thus. he fixed “a male or female slave of best quality” as the indemnity “for what was in her womb. ¯ HAD UD Had ud. and steals a a rope and his hand is cut off” (4185). saying that the man was merely talking “rhymed phrases like the rhymed phrases of desert Arabs” (4170). eighty stripes for falsely accusing a married woman. ’Aisha reports a similar case. Although Us¯ma b. and also for drinking wine. when a woman struck her pregnant co-wife with a tent-pole. The ah¯d¯ in ¯ a a is this book relate to measures of punishment defined either in the Qur¯n or in the Sunn¯h. arguing: “Should we pay indemnity for one who neither ate. a a The translator. a a The punishments include the amputation of limbs for theft and simple robbery. QIS AS. which also prescribes: “And as for the man is a who steals and the woman who steals. CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (QAS AMAH. HAD U D) INDEMNITY (DIYAT) Muhammad retained the old Arab practice of bloodwite (4166-4174). tells us that “it is against the background of this social security scheme envisaged by Isl¯m that the Qur¯n imposes the severe sentence of a a hand-cutting as deterrent punishment for theft” (note 2150).

SELF-CONFESSED ADULTERY There are some gruesome cases. one of you lagged behind and shrieked like the bleating of a a a male goat. And the punishment provided for both is one hundred stripes and not stoning to death as enjoined in the Sunn¯h for adultery. And in case of a married male committing adultery with a married female. ’Ub¯da reports the Prophet as saying: “Receive teaching a from me. . though there is one for the larger category of zin¯. a Flog each of them with a hundred stripes. is After this incident Muhammad harangued his followers: “Behold. All¯h has ordained . An ans¯r took the responsibility of suckling the infant and “she was a . When an unmarried male a commits adultery with an unmarried female. a branch of Azd. The translator explains that by the metaphor of goat and milk. receive teaching from me. ’Abdullah. By All¯h. the Prophet means sexual lust and semen. they should receive one hundred lashes and banishment for one year.” ’Umar is emphatic because in the Qur¯n there is no punishment for adultery as a such. as we set out for Jih¯d in the cause of All¯h. which means sexual intercourse a between parties not married to each other. and the verse of stoning was included in what was sent down to him. Upon finding that the man was married and also not mad. Stoning is a duty laid down in All¯h’s Book for a a married men and women who commit adultery” (4194). Confessing four times stands for the four witnesses who are required to testify in case of adultery. He repeated his confession four times. A fellow named M¯’iz came to Muhammad and told a him that he had committed adultery. in case I get hold of him.’ and thus go astray by a abandoning this duty prescribed by All¯h. . Muhammad ordered him to be stoned to death. a woman of Gh¯mid. Similarly. he said quite emphatically: “I am afraid that. “I was one of those who stoned him. Therefore. “The whore and the whoremonger. the term includes adultery as well as fornication. ‘We do not find the punishment of stoning in the Book of All¯h. the people may forget it and may say. came to Muhammad and told him a that she had become pregnant as a result of fornication.” preaches the Qur¯n (24:2). She was spared till she had given birth to her child. In this sense. ’Umar adds his own emphasis: “Verily All¯h sent Muhammad with truth and He sent a down the Book upon him.77 ADULTERY AND FORNICATION Adultery is severely punished. with the lapse of time.” says J¯bir b. I shall a certainly punish him” (4198). they shall receive one hundred lashes and be stoned to death” (4191). . and gave a small quantity of milk. a ’Umar was apprehensive that people might neglect the Sunn¯h and appeal to the Book a as grounds for a lenient punishment for their adultery. the a narrator of this had¯ (4196).

in fact. The stoning is begun by the witnesses. The Old Testament prescribes it for adultery and fornication (Deuteronomy 22:19-23). a chest-deep hole is dug for her. Another had¯ tells us how it was done. And then the multitudes follow. Muhammad retained it for adultery but prescribed death by other means for crimes like apostasy. The Qur¯n and the Sunn¯h. just as was done in the case of Ghamd¯ (the woman of iya Gh¯mid). . followed by the im¯m or q¯z¯ and then by the a a i. “She was put in a is ditch up to her chest and he [Muhammad] commanded people and they stoned her” (4206).78 ¯ ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 8. as no such hole was dug for M¯’iz. and also for those who “serve other gods” (Deuteronomy 13:10).” the a Qur¯n urges while prescribing punishment for the fornicators.” He ordered the a slave-girl and the goats to be returned and punished the young man for fornication “with one hundred lashes and exile for one year. “Do not let pity for them take hold of you in All¯h’s religion . participating believers. so that her nakedness is not exposed and the modesty of the watching multitude a is not offended. “Allah’s Messenger made pronouncement about her and she was stoned to death” (4029). enjoin the believers to a a both watch and actively participate in the execution. A young bachelor found employment as a servant in a certain household and committed zin¯ with the master’s a wife. HAD U D) then stoned to death” (4025).” The woman was punished for adultery. a A MOSAIC PRACTICE REVIVED The punishment of stoning to death (rajm) is Mosaic. Other traditions tell us that the Prophet himself cast the first stone. iya. ¯ MODEL PERSECUTION These cases provide a model for all future persecutions. and let a party of the believers witness their torment. Ab¯ Huraira narrates one u such case involving a man and woman belonging to desert tribes. the a former is punished for adultery and the latter for fornication. the first stone is cast by the im¯m or q¯z¯ following the example of the Prophet in the case of Ghamd¯ a a i. No such hole need be dug for a man. His father gave one hundred goats and a slave-girl in ransom. But in the case of a self-confessed criminal. . CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (QAS AMAH. . he judged it “according to the Book of All¯h. When a woman is to be stoned. a the self-confessed adulterer whose case we have just narrated. FORNICATION AND ADULTERY JOINED In a case of zin¯ in which one party is married and the other party unmarried. but when the case was brought before Muhammad. QIS AS.

then flog her and if she commits adultery again. stoning had fallen into disuse. and if she was unmarried. FLOGGING COULD BE POSTPONED If a woman has just delivered and there is an apprehension that flogging might kill her. “I was one of those who stoned them. According to one tradition. But she had recently given birth to a child and I was afraid that if I flogged her I might kill her. a Jew and a Jewess who had committed adultery were brought to Muhammad. but if he gives verdict for stoning. So “All¯h’s Messenger a pronounced judgment about both of them and they were stoned.79 Among the Jews themselves. and he was happy and thanked All¯h: “O All¯h. they a are the iniquitous” (5:45. those who i are married and those not married. for a slave-woman belonging to All¯h’s Messenger had a committed adultery. was not to be stoned to death. So I mentioned that to All¯h’s Messenger and he said ‘You have done well’ ” (4224). A slavewoman. the behaviour of those who vie with one another in a denying the truth should not grieve you” (Qur¯n 5:41).” Muhammad said: “Bring the Torah. But All¯h comforted him: “O Messenger. telling their chiefs: “Go to Muhammad. the son of ’Umar. then accept it.” says ’Abdullah. ’Al¯ says: “O people. 47). then flog her and then sell her even for a rope of hair” (4221). The Prophet was a merciful a man. . The Jews replied: “We darken their [the culprits’] faces and make them ride on a donkey with their faces turned to the opposite direction.” he adds (4211). The man and woman were stoned to death at Muhammad’s order. she may be spared “until she is alright” (4225). If a slave-girl is unprotected (unmarried) and “commits adultery. and I saw him [the Jew] protecting her [the Jewess] with his body. even if she was married. He asked the Jews what their Torah prescribed for such offenses. The Jews sent the two is accused to Muhammad. impose the prescribed punishment upon your slaves. Another had¯ gives more details about the same incident. she was liable to half the penalty (fifty strokes). by the time of Muhammad. A SLAVE ADULTERESS A more lenient view was taken in cases of adultery involving slave-women. then avoid it. I am the first to revive thy command a a when they had made it dead” (4214). if he commands you to blacken the face and award flogging as punishment.” The prescribed punishment was found to be stoning to death. and he committed me to flog her.” Muhammad was grieved at this softening of the Scriptures. All¯h also told him that “they who a a do not judge in accordance with what All¯h has revealed they are indeed wrongdoers.

“none should be given more than ten lashes” (4234). They hold that the number of stripes is to. QIS AS. PUNISHMENT FOR DRINKING The punishment for drinking is equally harsh. ’Al¯ said: “Stop now. several days.80 ¯ ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 8. ’Al¯ counted the stripes. depending on the physical condition of the offender.” So did Ab¯ Bakr. PUNISHMENT HAS ITS REWARD At the end. and i a Ab¯ Bakr also gave forty stripes. All¯h’s Messenger gave forty stripes. cases. It is small in size and discusses such matters as the qualities of a good judge and a good witness. class of punishment. and upon him is “imposed the prescribed punishment and that is carried out. and if he is sick. a ¯ TA’Z IR Had ud punishments are prescribed by the Qur¯n and the Had¯ But there is another ¯ a is. the flogging can be postponed until he recovers. be determined on the basis of the enormity of the crime. Ja’far ’Usm¯n ordered ’Ali a i to lash him. but this one [forty stripes] is dearer to me” (4231). When the i number forty was reached. But the majority of later Muslim jurists think differently. If he does his best and also gives the right judgment. Muhammad prescribed “forty stripes with two lashes. he still has . JUDICIAL DECISIONS The sixteenth book deals with judicial decisions (aqdiyya). and all these fall under u the category of the Sunn¯h. CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (QAS AMAH. ’Al¯ in turn ordered Hasan and then ’Abdullah b. Muhammad assures the believer that if he committed a crime. While ’Abdullah was flogging the victim. called ta’z¯ in which the judge can use his own discretion. In such ir. the third Khal¯ a ifa. he has two rewards. and ’Umar gave eighty stripes. and ¯ to lash him. A judge “should not judge between two persons when he is angry” (4264). u A man charged with drinking was brought before ’Usm¯n. that is his expiation for that sin” (4237). If he does his best but errs. but ’Umar came and prescribed eighty stripes (4226). HAD U D) On the basis of this had¯ Muslim jurists conclude that flogging can be spread over is.

are also discussed in this book. . Muhammad says that one should show hospitality to guests but wisely adds that “hospitality extends for three days. Fresh vegetables. According to the Qur¯n. a A few other matters that are not connected with judicial decisions. a fruit and firewood. is as good as a manual on how to steal a ¯ without attracting extreme penalties under Isl¯mic law. and carpets from mosques. marble. In a dispute regarding property or debt. such as books. such as hospitality. meat and chicken and musical instruments can be stolen with impunity. and bread.81 one reward (4261). the evidence of two men or of one man and two women is required. glass. Hashmi says that the theft of many a articles. birds. Christians. Nor is the testimony of Jews. recently published in Pakistan. and unbelievers considered in a strictly Isl¯mic law court. Maulana Mohammad Matin Hashmi’s book Isl¯mic Had ud. is not covered by Isl¯mic law. Also exempt are bricks. and loaded camels and merchandise from trade centers (PTI. The excellent witness is he “who produces his evidence before he is asked for it” (4268). mats. the evidence of a woman is not ¯ considered at all. a woman’s testimony (shahadah) has half the weight of a a man’s (2:282). According to some. and what is beyond that is Sadaqa [charity]” (4286). November 15. 1981). cement. In cases involving had ud. CRIME WITH IMPUNITY The Isl¯mic laws on crime and punishment seem to be foolproof and ironclad. but a apparently this is not really so.


Theologically. . . If they refuse to migrate. 83 . . living there was a sign of acceptance of Isl¯m and loyalty to Muhammad]. but they will not get any share from the spoils of war or Fa’i a . . . . the jizy¯ a a a all beautifully and profitably interwoven. THREE OPTIONS Muhammad told those whom he made chiefs of his raiding par-ties: “Fight in the name of All¯h and in the way of All¯h. . Fight against those who disbelieve in All¯h. Then invite them to migrate from their lands to the land of Muh¯jirs [i. and inform them that. a a trying to be universal through conquest. . . accept it from them a . if they respond to you. the spoils of war. a Jih¯d is a divinely ordained institution in Isl¯m. if they do so. .e. All¯h. it is an intolerant idea: a tribal god. Medina. All¯h. do not embezzle the spoils. By many authorities it is counted a a as one of the pillars of Isl¯m. they shall have all a the privileges and obligations of the Muh¯jirs.Chapter 9 Religious Wars (Jih¯d) a The seventeenth book is the “Book of Religious Wars and Expeditions” (Kit¯b a al-Jih¯d Wa’l-Siyar). Make a holy a a a war. seek All¯h’s help and fight them” (4294). it was an imperialist urge masked in religious phraseology. Historically.” He also told them to offer their enemies three options or courses of action: “Invite them to accept Isl¯m. demand from them the Jizy¯ . a in the early days of Muhammad’s stay in Medina. If they refuse to a a pay the tax.. If they refuse to accept Isl¯m. tell them that a they will have the status of Bedouin Muslims and will be subjected to the Commands of All¯h like other Muslims.

He killed those who fought and imprisoned others” (4292). had¯ 4324). al-Madina. Muhammad cut down and burned the celebrated vineyards of the enemy at at-T¯’if in the eighth year of the Hijra. is Fortified by this revelation. If need be.” says the Qur¯n a . particularly a war fought in the Way of All¯h. “The Messenger of All¯h made a raid upon Ban¯ Mustaliq a u while they were unaware and their cattle were having a drink at the water. JUSTIFICATION OF BURNING TREES Muhammad surrounded a Jewish tribe called Ban¯ Naz¯ residing in the vicinity of u ir. As the Prophet a says. SPOILS OF WAR The plundering of infidels and polytheists is a central concept in the Muslim religion. Jass¯ma said to Muhammad: “Messenger of All¯h. it is with the permission of All¯h so that he may disgrace the evil-doers” (Qur¯n a a 59:5. Sa’b b. as some others have translated it. All¯h made war booty a lawful for the Muslims. So All¯h hastened to a speak through Muhammad: “Whatever trees you have cut down or left standing on their trunks.” CHILDREN OF THE POLYTHEISTS In jih¯d. unknown to the Arabs before. “cunning. this requirement can be waived. All is fair in love and war. RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) RAID WITHOUT WARNING It is not always necessary to give warning or offer options in advance. He [Muhammad] said: ‘They are from them’ ” (4323).” Since destroying palm trees was something of a sacrilege in Arabia. and ordered their date-palms “to be burnt and cut. They are generally taken prisoners and then enslaved or sold or released after ransom is exacted. “war is a stratagem” (4311). That was another contribution by a Muhammad to the new ethics of war. But if they are killed. no song need be made about it. and was the linchpin in the economy of the ummah for centuries. “Eat ye the spoils of war. this shocked the Arabs. Religious conversion is likely to ensue from a military victory followed by pillage and plunder. we kill the a a children of polytheists during the night raids. it is lawful and pure. or. all arms-bearing males of the enemy are killed. but Muhammad “disapproved a of the killing of women and children” (4319).84 ¯ CHAPTER 9.

Glorious Qur an (Cairo: Daral-Kitab al Masri. Any portion given out to individuals are accessory gifts. and also as a favor and extra incentive. One had¯ tells us that the spoils were made lawful especially for the ummah. as administered by his Apostle. DIVISION Essentially. “The is spoils of war were not lawful for any people before us. where resistance was expected to be stiff.. ’Abdullah Yusuf ’Al¯ translator and commentator of the Qur¯n. the desert Arabs did not participate in his expedition to Hudaibiyeh. “Ye shall by no means follow us. and their property a for an inheritance” (Qur¯n 33:26-27).” but he would answer. he fought from wrong motives. it is an a extra favour to him” (note 2229). a In fact. In fact. Say: “The spoils of war are for All¯h and the Apostle” (Qur¯n 8:1). “They ask thee concerning the a spoils of war. and their dwellings. 1934). he a a is given a share in it.” The recalcitrant should earn their reward the 1 ’Abdullah Yusuf ’Al¯ trans. This is because All¯h saw our a weakness and humility and made them lawful for us” (4327). when it would be easy to win booty. and how All¯h gave them “their [enemies’] land. in this case the cause of God. Denying such opportunities to the lukewarm was his way of punishing them. in commenting on i. they would say. providing opportunities for easy booty was Muhammad’s way of rewarding his followers. If he fought for such accessory rewards. But a a since the muj¯hid does not live by All¯h alone. Muhammad told them that the next time. i. “Permit us to follow you. The lure of plunder was a great motivating force. all the more powerful because of the religious phraseology. He reminded the believers of how they “slew a part [of their enemies] and another part made captive”. The translator explains: “A muj¯hid fights to uphold the cause of righteousness and a for the supremacy of Isl¯m. ¯ . Muhammad fully satisfied this motive and constantly appealed to it. and if in this fight he gets a share in the spoils of war. the spoils belong to All¯h and His Apostle.85 (8:69). He says that “booty taken in a lawful and just war does not belong to any individual. a this verse puts the matter still more eloquently.” 1 A GREAT MOTIVATING FORCE Despite the pious rhetoric. material incentives had to be provided. windfalls from the bounty of the Commander. It belongs to the Cause. For example.

and was full of claims. You have not found me niggardly or cowardly or false. and accusations. surrounding a Muhammad “until they forced him back against a tree and his mantle was tom from him. pretty rough. If a town disobeys All¯h and the Messenger a [and fights against the Muslims] one-fifth of the booty seized there from is for All¯h and a His Apostle and the rest is for you” (4346).” He cried: “Give me back my mantle. you have a share [in the form of an award] in [the properties obtained from] it. is to take place in order to quiet the suspicion. then if you obey. Even Muhammad was once accused of concealing spoils (Tirmiz¯ vol. ¯ ¯ . If any person is so false. I swear by All¯h that if I had as many sheep as the a trees of Tilham I would distribute them among you. on the Day of Judgment. but Muhammad distributed it only among those who had accompanied him on the previous occasion.-161). restore what he misappropriated. . which he took by surprise. a a Muhammad was as good as his word. . had¯ 868). Within a few months. 594. in fact. Commenting on this verse. and they have no interest for us now” (note 472). The booty was very large. he shall. p. “It is not for a prophet to cheat or be false to his trust.” the muj¯hids demanded.86 ¯ CHAPTER 9. Ibn Ish¯q reports that a on one such occasion.” 2 ¯ AL-GHANIMAH AND FAI’ There are two forms of war gains: al-ghan¯ imah and fai’. suspicion.” said All¯h (3. All¯h will give you a goodly hire” (Qur¯n 48:16). after the capture of Hunain. The occasions when the spoils were distributed were. The distribution of the booty was always a passionate issue. . “Divide our spoil of camels and herds among us. but the process of allocating the plunder was rarely easy sailing. and supernal intervention had i. ’Abdullah Yusuf ’Al¯ assures us that “those low suspicions were never a i. grievances. the other accrues when the non-Muslims surrender without offering resistance. The atmosphere was charged with expectation and excitement. All¯h Himself directed Muhammad to “say to the desert Arabs who lagged a behind” that “ye shall be called out against a people given to vehement war . “If you come to a township which has surrendered without a formal war and you stay therein. 2 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. believed in by any sensible person. The first includes spoils which fall to the lot of the Muslims after an armed conflict. he set out on an expedition against Khaibar. recriminations. II. RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) hard way. MUHAMMAD ACCUSED OF CONCEALING SPOILS The spoils of war were most welcome. the translator of the a Glorious Qur¯n. Muhammad was mobbed by the men.

“They are our kith and kin. as the victim’s head was struck off.” which ’Al¯ readily did. Thus prisoners were a rich source of revenue. O ’Al¯ arise and strike off his [Nassar’s] head. any such property that cannot be carried away. From the beginning of Muhammad’s sojourn in Medina. Alh¯ris. were regarded as legitimate items of plunder. whether men. They were either distributed among the believers as slaves or sold into slavery or held against payment of ransom by their relatives. at least in this case. to His Apostle. except for a few who were killed. when they are no more. the rules relating to the distribution of booty and the disposal of fai’ were codified by the various fiqh schools. . This provision was supported by Muhammad’s own example. it is entirely at his disposal. In due course. Muqd¯d. Muhammad consulted Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar u about their treatment. Another unfortunate i. the orphans. including the cattle. and has thereby gladdened my ¯ eyes” (Mirkhond. the poor. deprive by Thy bounty Muqd¯d of the reward of ¯ a his worship. This will be a source of strength to us against the infidels. all prisoners. provided that they paid tribute and became tenants on their own land. He advised that they should be put to death. But ’Umar took a view that was more theological and also more cruel. the poor. tried to save him by claiming him a a as his prisoner. Ab¯ Bakr took a view that was more economic and also more u humane.” (8:41). And at his command. His Apostle.87 The Qur¯nic sanction for this principle of the division of the booty is contained in a the following verse: “Know that of that which you seize as spoils [ghan¯ imah]. gains from a war not actively fought. pp. . . One of these was Nassar b. his family. According to this code. to the Muslims in general. and a the traveller” (59:7). belongs wholly to the Prophet. the Apostle exclaimed: “I thank All ah that He has caused thee to be slain. Utbah pleaded with Muhammad: “O Muhammad. who had “uttered two distichs” (couplets) when Muhammad fled Mecca. During a retreat. A Muslim combatant. I think you should release them after getting from them ransom. 338-339). Along with the khums. When the Jews of Khaibar were defeated. they were allowed for some time to continue cultivating their Most male prisoners were released on the payment of ransom money. if thou slayest me who will take care of my children and little ones?” “The fire of hell!” Muhammad replied. vol. When seventy men were captured in the Battle of Badr. i fellow was Utbah. part II. or children. it was unlawful for a Muslim conqueror to leave anything in the hands of the infidels. the traveller a . women. his family. The very word and the principle of its disposal derive from the Qur¯n: “What All¯h gives [afa’a] to His Apostle a a of the people of the cities belongs to All¯h. Such property must be carried away and four-fifths of it distributed among the soldiers. I. The economic view prevailed. should be destroyed. 3 A Muslim chief who conquered a territory was at liberty to leave the land in the possession of the conquered. on the other hand. orphans. This is based on the divine principle that all the possessions of the unbelievers must revert to Muhammad and his family and. 3 . but Muhammad exclaimed: “O All ah. The fai’. for they were “leaders of the disbelievers and veterans amongst them” (4360).” he advised. a fifth-part [khums] belongs to All¯h.

The chief was also at liberty to distribute the land among his soldiers. they cannot engage in public worship. as the Muslim empire grew. the main source of livelihood for his Companions for quite some time was loot from raids on non-Muslim tribes. they said among themselves: “This man has saluted us in this way with a view to protect himself. a Ab¯ Qat¯da reports that while accompanying the Prophet on an expedition in the year u a of the Battle of Hunain. When he greeted them in the Muslim fashion. he killed a polytheist enemy and was awarded his belongings.Jews a yellow one and Christians a blue one . though they can repair old ones. It was used in the interest of the whole Muslim community (for the payment of troops and officers. These peoples were called zimm¯ “responsibility” of the Muslims.” “Then they got up and killed him and took away his goats” (vol. until they pay the tribute [jizy¯] in abasement” (9:29). 889). and . Another imposition. called jizy¯. It was a poll tax levied on a all unbelievers of certain categories and on payment of this tax they were allowed freedom in the exercise of their faith. The land was considered fai’ and declared to be part of the public domain. also belongs to the fai’. those to whom the Book has been brought. they are not to ride is on horseback. . in short. There are many other disabilities of the same kind. they are not to do anything that would display their infidelity in the face of the tokens of Isl¯m. but more often this was not done. Muhammad sent out his men to waylay non-Muslim tribes and to make raids on them.88 ¯ CHAPTER 9. Tirmiz¯ tells i ¯ once passed by a group of the Companions us that a goatherd belonging to the Ban¯ Salim u of the Apostle. RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) land on the payment of half the harvest (3762). This was the first property I acquired u . it was extended to other subject peoples.on their clothes to a make it easy to distinguish them from Muslims. they are to wear a special kind of girdle (zunn¯r) and are to fasten a piece a of colored cloth (ghiy¯r) . Imperialism has the same is. language in every age. such a as their public prayers and festivals. but later on. forts. p. . At first this benefit was limited to the Jews and Christians. and mosques). The zimm¯ are to carry no weapons. II. He gave the belongings of anyone who was killed to the Muslim who killed him as “a sort of encouragement to the Muslims to participate in jih¯d. They are not to build new churches and temples. and for the building of bridges. “In abasement” is an active clause and includes a many humiliating provisions. they are not to give offense to the Muslims by ringing church or temple bells. THE MAIN SOURCE OF LIVELIHOOD After Muhammad established himself in Medina. “I sold the armour (which was a part of my share of the booty) and brought with the sale proceeds a garden in the street of Ban¯ Salam. and kept as a permanent source of income for future generations. The institution of jizy¯ derives from the Qur¯n: “Fight those who believe not in God a a and in the last day.” as the translator puts it (note 2230).

. . . a property more valuable than anything he had ever possessed (4006). These properties were particularly meant for the Holy Prophet. “As ’Umar says: ‘The properties abandoned by Ban¯ u ¯ were the ones which All¯h bestowed upon His Apostle for which no expedition was Nazir a taken either with cavalry or camel. They were raided and captured and their property confiscated. He u ir. As a chief. u ir. the Prophet received a fifth of all the spoils taken from the enemy. “When the Messenger of All¯h a had finished the war with the people . The properties of the exiled Ban¯ Naz¯ a Jewish tribe of Medina. Spoils obtained without a battle went entirely to him. Anas reports that after Muhammad’s a migration to Medina. He also had seven other gardens in Medina. he also had the first choice in everything. part of the spoils that accrued to him when the Jewish community there was defeated. a but kept a large part for himself. As the amount of war booty increased. whether slaves or women or property.” he says (4340). to the exclusion of the ans¯rs. Muhammad and the other Emigrants became rich enough to pay the ans¯rs for their help and gifts. So did the others. MUHAMMAD’S SHARE In the distribution of the booty. “a person placed at his [Muhammad’s] disposal some date-palms . They got a large number of camels as booty. Eleven or twelve camels came to the lot of every fighter and each one of them also got one extra camel” (4330). he had properties at Khaibar. Then he began to return to him ir whatever he had received” (4376). . Khaibar was a populous valley inhabited by the Jews. distributed some of them among his Quraish followers.89 after embracing Isl¯m. ¯ One plot of land from the confiscated properties Muhammad turned into what is known as the “summer garden of Mary. were confiscated by Muhammad. according to others were a portion of the confiscated estates of the Ban¯ Naz¯ Similarly. the Muh¯jirs [Emigrants] returned to the Ans¯rs a a [Helpers] all the gifts they had given them” (4375). He also tells us that he acquired land in Khaibar that had belonged to the defeated Jews. ’Umar tells us: “The prophet sent an expedition a to Najd and I was among the troop. He would meet the annual expenditure of his family from the income thereof. which according to some were bestowed on him by a Jew named Mukhayr¯ but iq. . and would spend what remained for purchasing horses and weapons as preparation for Jihad’ ” (4347).” his Coptic slave-wife. until the lands of Quraiz and Naz¯ were conquered.

RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) THE QUARREL OVER MUHAMMAD’S PROPERTIES After Muhammad died. The conquest of . are described by name. “Twentysix are the Ghazw¯t in which the Holy Prophet himself participated and fifty-six are the a Sariya” (note 2283). u Prophet. a sariya is one led by his appointed lieutenant. and he himself participated in nineteen of them (4466). Zaid (4469). or as it is popularly known. i]. the Battle of Azh¯b. the Battle of the Ditch (4412).90 ¯ CHAPTER 9. there was a quarrel over the inheritance of his property. not always in the order in which they were fought. though. ’Abdullah. ’Aisha sided with her father’s faction and not with her co-wives. Arqam. Nine of the twenty-six ghazw¯t expeditions were armed conflicts. of this property so angered F¯tim¯. the Battle of Badr a (4394).” a RAIDS AND BATTLES The book refers to many forays. the number a was twenty-one. and battles of the Muslims. There are other traditions too. two every three months during Muhammad’s stay in Medina. the Prophet’s daughter. and ’Al¯ the Prophet’s son-in-law. u a Many battles. the Battle of T¯’if (4393). The denial a i. Another narrator participated in “seven military expeditions led by the Messenger and nine led by his lieutenants including Ab¯ Bakr and Us¯ma b. who had succeeded Ab¯ Bakr as Khal¯ u ifa. decide between me and this sinful. a the Battle of Uhud (4413-4419). for as Ab¯ Bakr says. and the Battle of Khaibar (4437-4441). ghazw¯t and sariya. in seventeen of which the narrator himself participated (4464. what we leave behind is charity” (4351). 4465). ’Aisha tells us that Muhammad’s other wives sent ’Usm¯n. The total number of expeditions was eighty-two. more or less in confirmation of the above. According to J¯bir b. Instead. She told them what Muhammad is supposed to have said: “We prophets do not have any heirs.” but there was a no formal transfer of ownership. raids. They took their dispute to ’Umar. the Battle of Hunain (4385-4392). dishonest liar [’Al¯ petitioned ’Abb¯s (4349). “Commander of the Faithful. A ghazw¯t is a military expedition led by the ras ul or im¯m a a ¯ a himself.” But. the son-in-law of the Prophet and a a future Khal¯ “to Ab¯ Bakr to demand from him their share from the legacy of the Holy ifa. the Prophet’s uncle. for example. ’Abb¯s and ’Al¯ themselves quarreled over the property which they jointly a i managed. These are of two kinds. According to Zaid b. the properties were placed under the joint management of ’Abb¯s. “the household of the Mesu senger of All¯h will [continue to] live on the income from these properties. treacherous. So a Muhammad’s share of the booty must have been considerable. the Prophet personally led nineteen expeditions. that she never spoke to Ab¯ a a u Bakr again for the rest of her life (4352). In due course. It was not much of charity.

angels came and fought on the side of the Muslims. Muhammad’s own role was planning and praying. author of the Prophet’s Persian biography. several miracles are mentioned. To the consternation of J¯bir and his family. . In most of the battles. 467).” and the meat and the loaves sufficed for the whole assembly (Rauzat-us-Safa. vol. part II. a Thou will not be worshipped on this earth” (4360). On many an occasion. For example. then ground one measure of barley into flour and leavened it. Either he prayed or spat into the well. . Muhammad came with a the whole army. p. J¯bir b. During the Battle of the Ditch. and invited Muhammad to a humble repast. If thou wishest that I should bring together the two mountains that stand opposite to each other at the extremities of Mecca to crush them in between. Ab¯ Huraira reports: “We were sitting in the mosque when the Messenger of All¯h u a came and said: Let us go to the Jews. II. numbering one thousand men. . a The water welled up. if this small band of Muslims is destroyed. at the Battle of Badr. Another tradition in the same vein is quoted by Mirkhond. MIRACLES In the accounts of these battles. Muhammad stretched out his hands and supplicated All¯h in these words: “O All¯h. . I would do that.91 Mecca is also mentioned (4395-4396). accomplish for a a me what Thou hast promised to me. On another occasion.” This was told to ’Aisha by the Prophet himself (4425). the angel in charge of the mountains greeted the Prophet and said: “I am the Angel in charge of the mountains. O All¯h. “The Messenger of All¯h sat on the brink of the well. But Muhammad “approached in his holy person the pot and leaven. and thy Lord has sent me to thee . throwing into each of them some of the saliva of his Kausarlike mouth. ’Abdullah slaughtered a young goat and placed its flesh in a a pot.” When the answer a . People who accompanied the Prophet on these expeditions report several miracles. The Messenger of All¯h called a out to them: O ye assembly of Jews. . accept Isl¯m and you will be safe. when people failed to respond to Muhammad’s call to become Muslims. . We went out .” Muhammad declared to ’Umar (4366). We drank and watered the beasts as well” (4450). EXPULSION OF THE JEWS AND CHRISTIANS “I will expel the Jews and Christians from the Arabian Peninsula and will not leave any but Muslims. Ibn Salama tells us that when they arrived at Hudaibiya “fourteen hundred in number.” they found that the water in the local well was insufficient for such a large company.

[so that] some ye slew. RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) was unsatisfactory. and granted favour to them u ir. According to ’Aisha. . those of them who can a fight [were] killed. and cast terror into their hearts. During the night graves or trenches . Then he killed their men. children and properties among the Muslims . 276-279: The men and women were penned up for the night in separate yards . gave command that the captives should be brought forth in companies of five and six at a time. and some ye made prisoners. A Qur¯nic verse put All¯h’s seal on the fate of this tribe of the People of the Book: a a “God did take them down from their strongholds. So march against them. a Commanded by All¯h through Gabriel. the Prophet had hardly laid down his arms after returning from the Battle of the Ditch when Gabriel appeared and told him: “You have laid down arms.” “Where?” Muhammad asked. their houses. By God. . they surrendered . He first “expelled Ban¯ Naz¯ and allowed Quraiza to stay on. . All¯h has disgraced you and brought His vengeance upon you. and the Jews of Ban¯ H¯risa and every other Jew who u a u a was in Medina. He told them: “O ye brothers of monkeys and swines. himself a spectator of the tragedy. . vol. and I wish that I should expel you from this land” (4363). And He made you heirs of their lands. Muhammad said that All¯h had u a commanded him to destroy the Quraiza. . . ¯ THE BANU QURAIZA The fate of the Ban¯ Quraiza was rather gruesome. . their women and children taken prisoners and their properties distributed among Muslims” (4370). . repeating passages from their scriptures. and distributed their women. [they] spent the night in prayer. . the son of ’Umar (4364). Muhammad approached the fort of the Quraiza. Muhammad’s expulsion plan began with the Jews of Medina and was implemented with great cruelty. He played on their hopes and fears and took them one by one. pp. The Messenger of All¯h turned out all the a Jews of Medina. a where they had gathered for shelter. Each company was made to sit down . were dug in the market-place . and exhorting one another in constancy. We give the story as summarized by W. .” a The Apostle “besieged them for twenty-five nights until they were sore pressed and God cast terror into their hearts. Then Gabriel “pointed to the Ban¯ Quraiza. until they too fought against him. III. . So u the Messenger of All¯h fought against them . . . when these were ready in the morning. Ban¯ Qainuq¯. Muir in his Life of Mahomet.92 ¯ CHAPTER 9. he told them: “You should know that the earth belongs to All¯h and a His Apostle.” we are told by ’Abdullah. Traditions and the pious biographies of the Prophet tell gleefully and in detail about the fate of the prisoners. and their goods” (Qur¯n 33:26-27). we haven’t laid down ours. we have arrived. Mahomet.” They surrendered unconditionally and were taken captive.

His people loved him and said that his “face was like a Chinese mirror in which the virgins of the tribe could see themselves. For Zoheir.” S¯bit refused. 4 Party after party they were thus led out. . ¯ quotes W¯qid¯ an earlier biographer. a i. He received to each inquiry the same reply . . There were (besides little children. and chose to remain (as. When a the men were being taken out in batches to the Apostle. another biographer. He invited her to be his wife. and having given command for the earth to be smoothed over their remains. Having sated his revenge. of Huwey. . till the whole were slain . She also declined the summons to conversion and continued in the Jewish faith. she had no alternative) his slave or concubine. of female slaves and servants. Here take my sword.” Ibn Ish¯q adds. . of Ozz¯l. and slaves. .of K¯b. but she declined.” 5 Ibn Hish¯m. . . it is sharp. Ibn Ish¯q tells a touching story. . chattels. “But what hath a become of all our chiefs . having refused marriage.”Then of what use is life to me any longer? Leave me not to that bloodthirsty man who has killed that are dear to me in cold blood . and therefore were u 4 The victims remained in the dark about their fate till the end. and there beheaded. from his share of these. One of his stories shows how Muhammad utilized local conflicts to his own advantage. I entreat thee. .they had all been slain already . to the effect that Muhammad’s biographers. for he kept steadily in view the advantage of raising around him a body of efficient horses. “Mahomet made certain presents to his friends. Mahomet returned from the horrid spectacle to solace himself with the charms of Rih¯na.But slay me also. pp. ¯ ikh i. The two most important non-Jewish tribes of Medina were the Aus and the Ban¯ Khazraj. in exchange for horses and arms. He replied. and ’Al¯ and Zubair i did the killing in his presence. 303-304. and gave him over to another. . an aged Jew. they asked Ka’b what he thought would be done with them. S¯bit intervened and procured a pardon . took his seat there. provides some material a omitted in the other accounts.” “This went on until the Apostle made an end of ¯ them. I. who had saved some of his allies of the Bani Aus . Muhammad himself had “deep trenches dug up. the son of Samuel?” a a asked the old man . and drenched the market-place with the blood of eight hundred victims. “Will you never understand? Don’t you see the summoner never stops and those who are taken away never return? By All ah it is death. The Quraiza were allied to the Aus. whose husband and all whose male relatives had just a perished in the massacre. who under ’Al¯ orders a i’s beheaded the aged man. .93 by the brink of the trench destined for its grave. strike high and hard.” The whole story in all its gruesomeness is narrated by Ibn Ish¯q. Tabar¯ and Mirkhond. and then sent the rest of the women and children to be sold among the Bedouin tribes of Najd. indeed.land. and butchered in cold blood. who were counted with their mothers) a thousand captives.” 5 T ar¯ Tabar¯ vol. The booty was divided into four classes . a Ka’b was one of the chiefs of the Quraiza. . Tabari a i. and Muhammad took a fifth of each. cattle.

saying. They must become parties to an act which is effective in the measure that it is compromising. Muhammad exultantly told him: “O enemy of All¯h. Rauzat-us-Safa. 9 ¯ S irat Ras ul All ah. . Thus. RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) not well liked by the Ban¯ Khazraj.” Then he sat down. u the “Khazraj began to cut off their heads with great satisfaction. . and massacre have been written against the Sons of Israel. 752. II. . In any case the followers should not be allowed to feel superior and to refrain from an act simply because they regard it as iniquitous or cruel.” Huyayy replied: “I do not blame myself for having borne enmity to thee . to take off my robe from my body. They must learn to have a conscience equal to their prescribed part and acts and to be worthy of their new role. They must become a participants in its blood-rites. Hass¯n sang: a Quraiza met their misfortune And in humiliation found no helper. u ¯ S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. ¯ ¯ . He who forsakes God will be forsaken . and at a signal from Muhammad. 465. before dying. A calamity worse than that which fell Ban u al-Naz¯ befell them ¯ ir The day that God’s Apostle came to them like a brilliant moon. with his hands bound to his neck with a rope. when Muhammad ordered the Jews beheaded. . He had come in a shirt so torn and tattered that it was not worth taking as a spoil. They must be hardened in the difficult school of Isl¯m. p. and has made me thy judge. Besides the aged Zoheir. 7 In fact. part II. was known affectionately among his people as “the grandee of the town.” “the friend of the destitute and the poor. Akhatab.” He too was brought before Muhammad. Huyayy b. p.” 9 Muhammad’s court poets duly celebrated his victory. his head was struck off. God’s command is right. “I shall never forget my wonder at her good spirits and loud laughter when all the time she knew that she would be killed. .’ ” 6 Those who follow the Prophet must become new men with a new conscience and new loyalties. a Jewish leader. A book and a decree. When there were only twelve of them left he gave them over to Aus. A man who still has some integrity is un-safely independent.” and “the prince of the desert and the sown. but there was no such indication on the part of the Aus. and there is no remedy . The Apostle saw that the faces of Khazraj showed pleasure.” 8 There is a similar tale about a woman who was beheaded in the same fashion. u assigning one Jew to every two of Aus. ‘Let so-and-so strike him and so-and-so finish him off. at last a the Most High and Glorious has given thee into my power. 464. . p. . he told ’Al¯ his executioner: “I beseech thee not i. p. 476. ’Aisha says of her.94 ¯ CHAPTER 9. Ibn Ish¯q and Mirkhond mention another case touching in its a bravery. but God the most High has given thee victory. 6 7 Sirat Ras¯l All ah. vol. ¯ ¯ 8 Mirkhond. and he suspected that that was because of the alliance that had existed between them and Ban¯ Quraiza.

so much so that the ans¯rs murmured: “After all the man has a been swayed by tenderness towards his family and love for his city” (4396). . if. . 484-486).” he prayed to All¯h. the a a Quraish were completely ignorant of the fact and did not even know what he was doing. 12 ibid. 544. do you see the ruffians of the Quraish? a a . a who were themselves Meccans and therefore might be somewhat inhibited. a chief of the tribe of Saq¯ and a convert to Isl¯m. take eyes and ears from Quraish so that we may take them by surprise. 546. His people killed him. to demolish the idol of All at. pp. He called the ans¯rs and said to them: “O ye Assembly of Ans¯rs. Umro b. Wal¯ was sent to Nakh¯ to destroy the idol of a id i Al-’Uzz¯. A little later. Muhammad sent Ab¯ Sufy¯n along with Al-Mugh¯ b. the women of Saq¯ came out with their heads uncovered mourning and if saying: 11 10 We weep for our Protector. 480. wipe them out. Muhammad u a dealt with them leniently. ¯ ¯ 12 ’Al¯ was chosen to destroy the idols (which he did by mounting the shoulders of Muhammad) and i ’Umar the pictures on the walls of the Ka’ba. in A.” But on representation by Ab¯ Sufy¯n. In fighting the Meccans. 11 Muhammad knew how to use men and utilize their psychology. who were from Medina. struck the idol with his pickaxe. (T ar¯ Tabar¯ vol. . they submitted to the authority of Muhammad. I. ¯ ira. a to his people to persuade them to become Muslims. and stealthily advanced on Mecca with ten a thousand men. I. When you meet them tomorrow. “O God. Kh¯lid b. the deity of the tribes of Aus and Khazraj (Tabaq at. H. Who did not show enough manliness in defending Her. pp. Shu’ba. 434-435) ¯ ikh i. As Al-Mugh¯ protected by his soldiers on all sides. pp.. the tutelary goddess of Ban¯ Kin¯n and the Quraish. he gave the pride of place to the ans¯rs. We left them with the blood upon them like a pool They having accomplished nothing. Eventually Muhammad entered the city and destroyed the idols around the Ka’ba. Other men were sent to the neighboring areas for the same purpose and for looting the temple treasuries. their goddess. Zaid al-Ashahal¯ to destroy Al-Man¯t. p. They lay prostrate with vultures circling round them.” Ab¯ Huraira adds: “Whoever was seen u by them that day was put to death. he made secret preparations to invade Mecca. Muhammad sent ’Urwa. Ibn Ish¯q tells us that when the Apostle reached Marr al-Zahar¯n. and. i a ¯ vol. therefore. one of u a ira their kin.95 With fresh horses bearing horsemen like hawks. Then they took counsel among themselves and concluded that they could not fight the Arabs around them. 9. Deserted by Her servants. and not to the Emigrants. Al’as to destroy the idol of Suw¯. 10 THE CONQUEST OF MECCA Though Muhammad and the Meccans had entered into a ten-year truce. He took Mecca by surprise. S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. a u a a and Sa’d b.

asmit a).even to talk ill of the Prophet in order to win his confidence. and in a deeper nescience (avidy¯). To win something of the spiritual light requires self-work. it is not that easy to get over “falsehood” according to Hinduism. True. the sentiment was merely optimistic and lacked true spiritual insight. Muhammad a had at his disposal a band of hatchet men ready to do his bidding.96 ¯ CHAPTER 9. Wonderful! To say the least. selfa a churning. The permission was given. in pretentious revelations and fond beliefs. self-discovery. he lured his intended victim outside. But this did not save the Meccans from other forms of killing as sure and disgraceful as this one. spiritual demolition involves the demolition of the desire-gods and the ego-gods. A fixed and fanatic idea of God is worse than a plurality of god-forms. whether Jehovah or All¯h. and that too at the hands of their fellow Muslims. . or falsehood. It is easy to demolish stone or copper gods on the ¯ a altars.” said Muhammad. or what the Yogas call the m¯dha and the vikshipta consciousness. Ashraf? He has maligned All¯h. u Similarly. self-shedding. Ka’b’s wife warned: “I bear a voice which sounds This destruction and pillage of other people’s temples and images set the tone for the Muslims of the future. RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) declaring: “Truth has come and falsehood has vanished” (4397). but more difficult to demolish false gods enshrined in one’s own heart. it is rooted in the dualities of the mind (dvandva). It takes more than an invading army of crusaders or a demolition squad with sledgehammers to establish the domain of Truth. Maslama: “Messenger of All¯h. a After the conquest of Mecca. Then the assassin. accompanied by some accomplices. went to Ka’b’s house at night. the Exalted. he got inconvenient elements eliminated. “Who will kill Ka’b b. the demolition of the false gods that reside in conceited theologies. A gentle god-form which exists in harmony with other god-forms is to be preferred to a Leviathan-God. According to the Yogas. a more psychological and mystical religion. say Al-L¯t with Al-L¯h. Through them. Truth cannot be ushered in by replacing one godling with another. like jih¯d. particularly those who questioned his apostolic inspiration and had the ability to put their opposition into poetry and satire. ASSASSINATION Assassination. Muhammad declared: “No Quraishite will be killed bound hand and foot from this day until the Day of Judgment” (4399). and His Messenger. Spiritual darkness. a Volunteered one Muhammad b. Posing as a disgruntled follower of the Prophet. is an extension of a fanatic creed and psychology. do you wish that I should a kill him?” The Prophet replied: “Yes. The enemy on the path is not the multiplicity of god-symbols but the unregenerate heart and the wanderings of a diffused mind. in egoistic life (aham. has a source deep in our being.” Then the assassin sought Muhammad’s permission to talk to the intended victim as he thought best . the real difference is not between “one god” and “many gods” but between an ordinary mind and an awakened mind.

sang: Of them Ka’b was left prostrate there. ¯ ¯ ibid.” who made the victim taste his death “with their deadly swords. Further details are available in various other accounts. such as the Sah¯ Bukh¯ri.” He went down and was killed (4436). u Some. He beguiled him and brought him down with guile. pp. Very soon.. 14 . Ab¯ M¯’ila. 368-369. 13 Hass¯n b.” 14 Another tradition quoted by Ibn Ish¯q a says that “our attack upon God’s enemy cast terror among the Jews. 368. ¯ HELP FROM A POLYTHEIST IN JIHAD The last had¯ of this book is about a man who approached Muhammad and said: “I is have come so that I may follow you and get a share from the booty. Others did not say it at all for fear of losing time and not u reaching the spot in time. a poems written by Muhammad’s court poets to celebrate the event. Muhammad announced that nobody would say a his zuhr prayer (the afternoon prayer. travelling by night a with their light swords.” 15 ¯ JIHAD TAKES PRECEDENCE OVER PRAYER Returning from the Battle of Azh¯b. Muhammad “did not blame anyone from the two groups” (4374). recited when the sun has begun to decline) but in the quarters of the Ban¯ Quraiza.” Muhammad asked 13 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. Another Ka’b. When a gentleman is called at night even if to be pierced with u a a spear. and there was no Jew in Medina who did not fear his life. he should respond to the call. another poet.” But Ka’b replied: “It is only Muhammad b. describes the assassins “bold as lions. On learning this. p. 15 ibid.. Sabit. p. Sword in hand we cut him down By Muhammad’s order when he sent secretly by night Ka’b’s brother to go to Ka’b. as we have seen. said the prayer before reaching the street of the Ban¯ Quraiza. a poet.97 like the voice of murder. 369. Ka’b’s head was flung at the feet of the Prophet. Maslama and his foster brother. the unlucky victims of his aggression. fearing that the time for the prayer might be over. seeking victory for the religion of their prophet. and ih a the biographies of Muhammad by Ibn Ish¯q and Tabar¯ Ibn Ish¯q also quotes from the a i.

Safw¯n b. . (4472). According to the translator. and Quzm¯n was present on the day of Uhud. ¯ from which we learn that the Holy Prophet accepted help contradicts some other ah¯d is a offered by non-Muslims in his military campaigns.98 ¯ CHAPTER 9. The translator makes an interesting comment on this had¯ He says that it apparently is. RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) him if he believed in All¯h and His Messenger. Ummaya fought a on his side at the Battle of Hunain. “these two instances go to prove that the help of a non-Muslim can be accepted when it is essential” (note 2285). When the man said he did not. Muhammad a declined his offer till he corrected his theology. and a both were polytheists. For example.

in all matters. It is not a treatise a on the theory and practice of government as understood today. only Muslims have full political rights in any sense of the term. So in a Muslim polity. food. God has given a prototype for imitation in Muhammad. and so on. it enters intimately into a every detail of the believer’s life: his modes and manners. “We [All¯h] put thee [Muhammad] in the right way concerning affairs” (Qura an 14:17). An Isl¯mic state is necessarily a theocracy. dress. “People are subservient to the Quraish: the Muslims 99 . It includes all his beliefs and affairs. is. The function of a truly Isl¯mic government a a is not merely to maintain law and order but to enforce the law of shar¯ i’ah. and pilgrimage. zak¯t. the “Book on al-Im¯ra” esa is a tablishes the supremacy of the Quraish.Chapter 10 Government (Al-Im¯ra) a The eighteenth book is the “Book on Government” (al-im¯ra). the tribe to which Muhammad belonged. the concept of ummah dominates over a the concept of man or mankind. The function of an Isl¯mic state is to enforce this model as best it can. non-Muslims. a An Isl¯mic state is totalitarian in the philosophic sense. if they are allowed to exist at all as a result of various exigencies. rather. in thirteen ah¯d¯ (4473-4484). marriage. with which we have been making acquaintance to some extent in these pages. Has not ¯ a All¯h sent “His apostle with guidance and the religion of Truth. are zimm¯ second-class citizens. A closed politics or civics is a a necessary corollary of a closed theology. THE SUPREMACY OF THE QURAISH At the very beginning. to make it prevail over a every other religion”? (Qur¯n 9:33). general morality. Shar¯ i’ah does not pertain merely to prayer. political and intellectual. The spirit and informing principles are very different. In Isl¯m.

who added to his many titles three others: a a Protector of the Two Lands (al-Hij¯z and Syria. helped by petrodollars. Then it passed on to the Turkish Sult¯n Usm¯n (A. necessary foundations. There can be no Arab Caliphate (a euphemism for Arab imperialism) without Muslim fundamentalism.” Muhammad says (4476).be Thou hard upon him. who are supposed to be descendants of the Prophet. though the Shias limit the office still further to the descendants of Muhammad. the a grandson of Genghis Khan. Successor of the a a Apostle of God.” Muhammad prays to All¯h (4494). emerged in Egypt. GOVERNMENT (AL-IM ARA) among them being subservient to the Muslims among them. and buying up political support in Muslim countries and among a Muslim populations. a . “O God. and the disbelievers among them. “people are the followers of Quraish in good as well as evil” (4475). strengthening fundamentalism and pan-Isl¯mism. Muslim fundamentalism feeds pan-Isl¯mism under the a Arab aegis. and he who acquires control over the affairs of my people and is kind to them . financial tycoons. ¯ ONLY A QURAISH MAY BE KHAL IFA “The Caliphate will remain among the Quraish even if only two persons are left on the earth. At present they are busy laying the first. put to death the last Khal¯ at Baghdad. are held in very high esteem and their persons are considered sacred. the holy lands of Isl¯m). who happens to acquire some kind of control over the affairs of my people and is hard upon them .100 ¯ CHAPTER 10. for six hundred years. rulers. and Ruler of the Faithful. But the sentiment that the Khal¯ should be a Quraish or at least an Arab was so ifa strong that the Sult¯n of Turkey was never given universal recognition by Muslim theoloa gians. D. being subservient to the unbelievers among them. his wife F¯tima. and i. RULERS Isl¯mic rulers should be just to the ummah and follow Muhammad’s shar¯ a i’ah faithfully. This principle has been held very high in the Muslim world. They were warriors. the Caliphate remained with the Quraish till Hal¯ku. shorn of temporal power yet still Quraish.be Thou kind to him. Thanks to Muhammad. a As a result. A branch of them. In another version.” says Muhammad (4473-4474). may one day revive this idea. the Arabian Quraish became a most durable caste with not many parallels in history. and scholars. though the center of power of Isl¯m shifted from a Mecca to Damascus to Baghdad. a shadowy ifa Caliphate. The present-day Sauds. the Saiyids. and specifically to the branch descended from ’Al¯ the Prophet’s cousin and son-in-law. 1299-1326). Later. the Prophet’s daughter.

“When oath of allegiance has been taken for two Khal¯ ifas. If the electors choose someone unanimously. Some of the guiding principles ifa he laid down for the council were: 1. This is a big loophole which was fully used. As he lay dying. “It is obligatory upon a Muslim that he should listen to the ruler appointed over him and obey him whether he likes it or not. and should appeal to me for help. In fact. obey All¯h. An official should not accept “gifts” (4509-4516).101 There are other conventional exhortations. But other ah¯d¯ try to fill this gap. it is a religious obligation.” Muhammad warns misappropriators of booty (45054507). “O you a who believe. except that he is ordered to do a sinful thing” (4533). All¯h Himself enjoins this chain. kill the one for whom the oath was taken later” (4568). then that person is designated as the . a Qur¯n 4:59). but they end by establishing the tyranny of men. A man should not seek a “position of authority” (4487-4492). A man in charge of sadaqa comes to Muhammad and says: “This wealth is for you. and those in authority from amongst you” (4517. Somebody asks him what to do when there are more Khal¯ ifas than one. Muhammad establishes the following chain of command: “Whoso obeys the commander [appointed by me] obeys me. OBEDIENCE TO RULERS Closed theologies claiming a perfected revelation and denying a place to man’s everliving reason. War booty is sacred. Very thorough. and this is a gift presented to me. but misappropriation of booty is a serious offense. and to his moral and spiritual sense.” Muhammad told him: “Why didn’t you remain in the house of your father and mother to see whether gifts were presented to you or not?” (4510). a Some exceptions are mentioned. a is WARNING AGAINST SCHISM Muhammad tells his followers that after him there will be no prophet but many Khal¯ ifas. “I shouldn’t find that any of you should come on the Day of Judgment . and whoso disobeys the commander disobeys me” (4518). not to the officer. Muhammad says: “The one to whom allegiance is sworn first has a supremacy over the others” (4543). His Apostle. This injunction was followed to the letter by ’Umar. gifts are given to the office. he appointed a board of six electors to choose the new Khal¯ after him. . for as we know. have to invoke God at every step. .

then the deciding vote would be that of ’Abdullah b. “When you are holding to one single man as your leader. GOVERNMENT (AL-IM ARA) 2. Ghaffari. A crisis psychology indispensable for any dictatorship. his own son and one of the electors. If any four of them agree on one person and two disagree. 4. “Kill him. There will be among them men who will have the hearts of devils in the bodies of human beings. you should kill him who seeks to undermine your solidarity or disrupt your unity” (4567).102 Khal¯ ifa. WARNING AGAINST BAD TIMES Muhammad warns against the coming bad days when people will arise “who will adopt ways other than mine and seek guidance other than mine” and yet “they will be a people having the same complexion as ours and speaking our language. A theology which teaches unceasing war against the peoples of the D¯ru’l Harb (territories not held by Muslims) makes a a complete somersault and now teaches patient submission to the authorities of D¯ru’l Isla am (territories under Isl¯m) and to all its Ulu’l-amr. then those two should be killed. answering a follower. men of authority.” enjoins the next had¯ Hold on to is. p. 3. ¯ CHAPTER 10.” What should a believer do if he lives in those times? He “should stick to the main body of the Muslims and their leader” (4553). 1 All four points are taken from S. . In those days “there will be leaders who will not be led by my guidance and will not adopt my ways. 1 SOLIDARITY AND SINGLE LEADERSHIP “Anyone who tries to disrupt the affairs of this Ummah while they are united you should strike him with the sword” (4565). even if your back is flogged ir and your wealth is snatched. If there is an equal division.” Under the circumstances. Shiaism. then the dissenter should immediately be killed. Muhammad says: “You will listen to the Am¯ [ruler] and carry out his orders. If any five of them agree on one man and the sixth disagrees. you should listen and obey” (4554). 68. These include not ¯ a only its administrators but its divines. a single leader in order to ensure solidarity. ’Umar.

such as nocturnal emission and his capacity for impregnation. That decided the issue. “Who learnt archery and then gave it up is not from us or he has been guilty of disobedience to All¯h’s Apostle” (4714). the puberty of a girl is established by menstruation.” Muhammad repeated thrice in a sermon from the pulpit (4711). but none of you should give up a playing with his arrows” (4712). Is not Muhammad the final prophet? But “before the Day of Judgment. among them two on horse racing (4610-4611). There are also some ah¯d¯ on archery (4711-4714). the puberty of a boy is established by other criteria. The next year. This is understandable. But the translator tells us that in Isl¯mic law the age of majority differs with different a conditions and circumstances. he went to fight in the Battle of Khandaq. or pregnancy (note 2331). and one below fifteen is a minor (4605). “Beware. “Lands shall be thrown open to you and All¯h would suffice you. there will appear a number of impostors. but the Prophet did not accept him. For example. You are to guard against them” (4483). HORSES AND ARCHERY There are sixteen ah¯d¯ on horses. The translator assures us that it was not a horse race used for betting as in modern times. nocturnal emission. a THE AGE OF MAJORITY Let us take up one or two more small items before we turn to jih¯d.103 There is also a warning not only against schismatics and innovators but also against false prophets. for purposes of marriage. and this time he was accepted. ¯ JIHAD Jih¯d appears again. strength consists in a is archery. “There is almost a consensus of opinion amongst the jurists that it is an act of great piety to break the horses for Jih¯d and for other useful purposes and there is no harm if there a is a competition of race in them” (note 2335). a is Muhammad used to have a horse race between two particular points six miles apart. Again. ad and muj¯hids (crusaders) and martyrs. Similarly. when he was fifteen. Yet again. In a book on government containing 358 ah¯d¯ 92 are on jiha a is. for jih¯d is central to ¯ a a . which is also an a important subject of this book. The son of ’Umar went to fight in the Battle of Uhud when he was fourteen. One of fifteen years is considered an adult.

they became desperate.” They have no other desire except to be reborn so that they can be “slain in Thy [All¯h’s] way a once again” (4651). “Every wound a received by a Muslim in the Way of All¯h will appear on the Day of Judgment in the same a condition as it was when it was inflicted . But it is left to the discretion of the im¯m to decide when the attack a a should begin.” Muhammad tells his followers (4314). and the colour [of its discharge] will be the colour of blood.” In fact. . a ¯ THE MERITS OF JIHAD “All¯h has undertaken to look after the affairs of one who goes out to fight in His way a believing in Him and affirming the truth of His Apostles. Having no home and no livelihood. So the rules were changed. but only Jih¯d and sincerity a of purpose. Muhammad had the same desire for himself. Jiha a a a ad is a religious duty of a Muslim state. According to some fiqh schools. and are therefore called the “territory a a of war” (d¯r al-harb). if he dies in the Way of All¯h. The proof of a sincere conversion was no longer migration but jih¯d. but since this is not always practical. They eat the fruits of Paradise from wherever they like. a ¯ JIHAD AS PROOF OF TRUE CONVERSION After Muhammad migrated to Medina from Mecca. there is no Isl¯m. but its smell would be smell of musk” (4630). one campaign at least must be undertaken against the unbelievers every year. and motivated soldiers of Isl¯m. He is committed to His care and He will either admit him to Paradise or bring him back to his home with a reward or booty” (4626). . Jih¯d for the spread of Isl¯m is most meritorious and the easiest gateway to Paradise. “Think not of those who are slain in All¯h’s way as dead. prospective converts to Isl¯m used a to come to Medina to swear fidelity to him and as a proof of their sincerity would leave their hometowns and settle in Medina. and being uprooted from their old loyalties. Without jih¯d. “I love to fight in the . GOVERNMENT (AL-IM ARA) Isl¯m and muj¯hids are its Army of Liberation. his body will not decay. After a the conquest of Mecca. a a “Paradise is under the shadows of the swords. Muhammad told someone a who intended to settle in Medina: “There is no Hijra now. “the souls of the a martyrs live in the bodies of green birds who have their nests in chandeliers hung from the throne of the Almighty. it is enough if he keeps his army in preparedness and trains it for jih¯d. All lands not belonging to the territory of Isl¯m ¯ a (d¯r al-isl¯m) must be conquered by the Muslims. when you are asked to set out [on an expedition under-taken for the cause of Isl¯m] you should [readily] do so” (4597). there must have been a rush of people wanting to become Muslims.104 ¯ CHAPTER 10. when the power of Muhammad was fully vindicated.

“Leaving for a jih¯d in the way of All¯h in the morning or in the evening will merit a reward better than a a the world and all that is in it” (4639). And God guides not those who do wrong” (Qur¯n 9:19. All¯h sent him a verse: a a “Do ye make the givers of drink to pilgrims.” Another thought that maintainers of service to the mosque were superior. What is that act? . [yet] there is another act which elevates the position of a man in Paradise to a grade one hundred [higher]. Jih¯d in the way of All¯h! a a Jih¯d in the way of All¯h” (4645). a Isl¯m as his religion and Muhammad as his Apostle is necessarily entitled to enter Paradise a . a is There is more reward in jih¯d than in anything this world has to offer. a such as fasting. Muhammad was consulted. . . . “One who goes out for jih¯d is like a a person who keeps fasts. . had¯ 4638). THE HIGHEST GRADE OF HEAVEN IS RESERVED FOR ¯ THE MUJAHID The rewards of being a Muslim are great. ¯ THE SUPERIORITY OF JIHAD TO OTHER ACTS The spiritual merits that accrue to the believer for participating in jih¯d are equal to a the merits he can obtain by performing all the other religious duties required by Isl¯m. . if after embracing Isl¯m. to fight and again be killed and to fight and again be killed” a (4626). and the elevation between one grade and the other is equal to the height of the heaven from the earth . but the rewards of being a muj¯hid are a immensely greater.105 way of All¯h and be killed. But even the delights of this grade of paradise are no a a attraction to a martyr (Shah¯ id). The Prophet said: “Whoever cheerfully accepts All¯h as his Lord. praying. ¯ Some people disputed the excellence of different virtues. Yet a third wanted only to be a muj¯hid. . I do not do any good except distributing drinking water among the a pilgrims. . and the crusaders [j¯hid] in a a a the cause of God? They are not comparable in the sight of God. or the maintainers of the Sacred Mosque equal to the believers in All¯h and the Last Day [yaum’l-¯khirat]. and going on pilgrimage. the martyr “will desire to return to this world and be killed ten times for the sake of the great honour that has been bestowed upon him” (4635). . One said: “I do not care. stands in prayer constantly and obeys All¯h’s verses in the Qura an” (4636). Therefore.

. He answers: “A disbeliever and a believer” (4661-4662). Another puzzle seeking a solution. whereas the sinful believer would be in a comparatively less tormenting situation and thus they would not be together in Hell” (note 2348). J¯bir a reports: “We accompanied the Messenger of All¯h on an expedition. When we came back a 2 Sirat Ras ul All ah. go to hell but never “gathered together. .106 ¯ CHAPTER 10. he too fights in the Way of All¯h and dies a martyr” a a (4658-4659). he said: “He has with him now his two wives from the dark-eyed houris. We may give here another paradox. a stone struck him and he died a martyr. . The man threw away the dates he had in his hand and fought until he was killed” (4678). Then All¯h turns in mercy to a a a the murderer who embraces Isl¯m. p. a shepherd who was called to participate in jih¯d as soon as he became a a Muslim. taken from tradition quoted by Ibn Ish¯q.” 2 AN EARTHLY NOTE After all this Paradise-mongering.” “Who are they?” the Companions ask Muhammad. the book ends on a more down-to-earth note. The Companions ask Muhammad: “How?” He replied: “One is slain in the Way of All¯h [in jih¯d] and dies a martyr. Two men. and a disbeliever goes there as a matter of course. GOVERNMENT (AL-IM ARA) THE STORY OF A MARTYR The promise of heaven was tempting. one believer asked Muhammad: “Messenger of All¯h. On the way to the Battle of Uhud. Two men. without having had the time to say a single prayer. Asked to explain why. where shall I be if I am killed? He [Muhammad] a replied: In paradise. But there is still a great difference between the two. A a man goes to the Muslim Paradise without ever having offered a single Muslim prayer! He was Al-Aswad. again one of them a slayer and the other the slain. one the slayer and the other the slain. But how? The translator clarifies: A believer goes to hell for some great sin. [and also] a disbeliever would be made to occupy the most terrible place in Hell. BRAIN-TEASERS Muslim theology is not without its brain-teasers. Muhammad visited his corpse and delicately averted his face. So a believer “would not be kept a there [in hell] for ever as is the case with the disbeliever. A sinful believer and a disbeliever are not the same in the eyes of All¯h. both go to Paradise. In the engagement. 519 ¯ ¯ .

Homely wisdom.” according to Ibn ’Abbas (Tirmiz¯ vol. II. and let there be no avoidable breaking of homes. and a woman whose husband has been away may have removed the hair from her private parts’ ” (4727). had¯ 571). i. Give them time to separate. and thus their a wives may be with their paramours.107 to Medina and were going to enter our houses. One interpretation is that the muj¯hids have been away so long that their return is not expected. And the result: “they both found their wives with other men. he said: ‘Wait and enter your houses in the later part of the evening so that a woman with dishevelled hair may have used the comb. In such instances. Two men did not heed this command. let them not be taken by surprise. is . Another tradition forbids a muj¯hid to “come to his family like an unexpected night a visitor doubting their fidelity and spying into their lapses” (4730).


Chapter 11 Hunting. Food and Drink The nineteenth book is the “Book of Game and the Animals Which May Be Slaughtered and the Animals That Are to Be Eaten. and softened them a good deal. “O ye who believe! eat of the good a things wherewith we have pro-vided you. One must a also recite All¯h’s name over the dog that one sets off to catch a game animal (4732-4734). and some were altogether har¯m (forbidden). a a a However. for their flesh to be lawful food. provided the hunting dog has not eaten any part of the game” (4733). even if the game is killed. ¯ a Animals that are “clean” must be hunted and slaughtered in a particular way. some mub¯h (permitted). and at the same time repeat the words Bi’smillahi All¯hu akbar (“In the name of All¯h. Some animals were considered hal ul (lawful). GAME There are similar restrictions on game. a its flesh is not lawful. When someone asks: What “if I find along with my dog another dog. Yet some ritualistic restrictions were still there from the very beginning. It is not enough to recite the formula Bi’smillahi All¯hu akbar over game caught and killed by one’s trained dog before eating it. All¯h is great”). some ¯ a makr uh (disapproved but not penalized). When slaughtering an animal. one should draw the knife across its throat. then eat what these a hounds have caught for you. cutting the windpipe. a “When you set off your trained dogs having recited the name of All¯h.” Muhammad did not set much store by the many Jewish restrictions on the subject of food (tam¯m). repeating the sentiment a in another verse (5:87). with the help of a particular incantation.” says the Qur¯n (2:172). if an animal is slaughtered in this way by an idolater or an apostate from Isl¯m. and do not know which of them caught [the game]?” Muhammad answers: 109 .

During the journey. It fed them. and sliced from its compact piece of meat equal to a bull . They gave him one “and he ate it” (4756). There is a story behind this particular permission. HUNTING. “three hundred of them. But if it cannot be avoided. “Is there any piece of meat left with a you?” Muhammad inquired. FOOD AND DRINK What applies to the hunting dog applies to any animal used for hunting . . for they “are loathsome or impure” (4778). and their flesh “is a loathsome evil of Satan’s doing” (4777). they ate a a even the dead animal.” he says. a cheetah. J¯bir gives us an eyewitness account. The beast was dead. for in that case you do not know whether it is water that caused its death or your arrow” (4742). DOS AND DON’TS “If you are in the land of the People of the Book [Jews and Christians]. supplies ran short and they were on starvation rations when they saw rising before them on the coast of the sea “something like a big mound. except when a you find it [the prey] fallen into water. The test of a trained dog is that it catches a game animal three times without eating it. ASSES It is unlawful to eat the flesh of domestic asses (4763-4778). “When you shoot your arrow.” and as they were hard pressed. Ab¯ ’Ubaid [the chief] called u forth thirteen men from us and he made them sit in the cavity of its eye. “I saw how we extracted pitcher after pitcher full of fat from the cavity of its eye. then wash them before using them” (4743).110 “Then don’t eat it” (4734). The same holds true for game animals shot with an arrow. CHAPTER 11. . . But as they were “sent by the Messenger of All¯h in the path of All¯h. and if the arrow killed [the game] then eat.” J¯bir tells us. The test of a trained hawk is that it returns to its master in response to his call. . FLESH LAWFUL AND UNLAWFUL The eating of all fanged beasts of prey and of all birds having talons is prohibited (4748-4755). he said that it “was a special provision which All¯h had brought forth” for them.” It was a whale called al-’Anbar. a “All¯h’s Messenger sent us on an expedition so that we might intercept a caravan of the a Quraish. recite the name of All¯h. but it is permissible to eat water animals even if they die of natural causes. a When they came back and mentioned this to Muhammad. do not eat from their utensils.a falcon.” for a month till they grew bulky.

” His reason for not eating it: “It is not found in the land of my people. . the flesh of hares is lawful.” report Ibn Ab¯ Auf¯ and Ab¯ Bakr (4801-4803). u a u Similarly. and I feel that I have no liking for it” (4790). “Throw away your pots. LIZARDS. Khad¯ “We got hold of goats and camels. The translator tells us that “it is permissible to make use of these spoils in D¯r-ul-Harb [in the territory of the enemy]. and “sent its haunch and two hind legs to All¯h’s a Messenger . Shadd¯d b. saying: “I neither eat it. nor do I prohibit it. as is legally required” (4768). a a HORSES The flesh of a horse is lawful (4779-4782).” came the order. LOCUSTS. The eating of locusts is permissible. so when you kill. kill in a good way and when you slaughter. HARES The flesh of lizards is not forbidden. but a it is not allowed in D¯r-ul-Isl¯m” (note 2388). A roasted lizard was sent to the Prophet. Some thought at first that the prohibition was temporary. Anas reports that he and his companions chased a hare. “since one-fifth of the booty has not been given to the treasury. KILL WITH A GOOD ATTITUDE The Prophet was not without compassion. and he accepted them” (4801). narrated by R¯fi b. but to eat it is “against the high standard of piety” (4783-4800). when the earthen pots of the Companions were boiling with the flesh of domestic asses. caught and slaughtered it. To illustrate. He did not accept it. He [the Prophet] then commanded and these were turned over” (4847). The point is that no personal use can be made of any spoils of war unless the booty has been properly distributed and one-fifth made over to the treasury.111 The prohibition came on the day of Khaibar. “We went on seven expeditions with All¯h’s a Messenger and ate locusts. Some persons amongst us made a ij: haste and boiled the flesh of goats and camels in their earthen pots. . So every one of you should sharpen his knife. Aus reports: “Two are the things a which I remember All¯h’s Messenger having said: Verily All¯h has enjoined goodness to a a everything. we give another tradition. and let the slaughtered animal die comfortably” (4810). slaughter in a good way. .

HUNTING.” The Holy Ghost wanted to lay upon them no greater burden than was necessary (Acts 15:28-29). In Muhammad’s lifetime. are those a “who sacrificed for anyone besides All¯h. FOOD AND DRINK SACRIFICES Intimately connected with the above is the next book. the word stands for stabbing the breast of a camel as in a sacrifice. . a The Qur¯n uses many words for animal sacrifice. and from things strangled. In many religious traditions. In Isl¯m. and from blood. i.112 CHAPTER 11. too. is But in order to be meritorious. Muhammad tells his Companions a that “there is reward annexed to every hair of the animal sacrificed. But this feeling and this vision are rather conspicuous by their absence in Semitic religions. Some portions of the Old Testament read almost like a manual of animal slaughter. the sacrifice should be made to All¯h.” Muhammad tells us. not to Al-L¯t a a or Al-’Uzz¯ or Al-Man¯t. They were asked to slaughter other ones in their stead. many slaughtered their animals before Muhammad had said his prayer. People “should not sacrifice an animal before All¯h’s Messenger had sacrificed [his animal]” a (4837). animal sacrifice is highly meritorious. They were only required to “abstain from meats offered to idols. and hence derivatively for the sacrifice itself. The menu of the early Christians also did not exclude flesh food. Az¯hi itself derives from the root a a zabh. the “Book of Sacrifices” (Kit¯b a al-Az¯hi). compassion for all living beings is a strong element. which means “to injure the jugular vein”. before it falleth upon the ground” (Tirmiz¯ vol.” Another word used is nahr. Let only theology change but facts remain the same for this a a miracle to happen. except for flesh of a particular kind and flesh obtained in a particular way. had¯ 1392). Among the people whom “All¯h cursed. which means “to split or pierce. verily its blood reacheth the acceptance of God. I. which itself has its basis in a deeper vision of the unity of all fife. Some people talk glibly about what the Holy Ghost wants or what All¯h wills but are a deaf to the voice of conscience and compassion within the human heart.” and those “who accommodated an innovator in a religion” (4876-4878). THE PROPER TIME FOR SACRIFICE The proper time for sacrificing an animal on the day of ¯ idu’l Az¯ is after the morna ing prayer (4818-4835).

and when they are a . we have made for you as among the symbols from God . unless it is difficult for you.” When she did. we are going to encounter the enemy a tomorrow. “Give me the large knife. it is bone. “Sacrifice only a grown-up animal.” SACRIFICE IS COMPULSORY The translator in a note quotes a had¯ to show that animal sacrifice on the day of ¯ is idu’l Az¯ is compulsory for every Muslim adult. accept [this saca a rifice] on behalf of Muhammad and the family of Muhammad and the Ummah of Muhammad” (4845). but we have no knives with us. . “he placed it on the ground and then sacrificed it” (4845). Muhammad “commanded that a ram with black legs. so there is also a proper age for the sacrificial animal. Muhammad said: a u “He who can afford sacrifice but does not offer it. . Muhammad recited: “In the name of All¯h. then pronounce the name of All¯h over them as they line up for sacrifice.” (The knives were not required for use against the enemy but for slaughtering the animals which might fall to their lot as spoils of war. O All¯h. This is understandable. Muhammad is informed by a Companion: “All¯h’s Messenger. While sacrificing. he should not come near our place of worship” (note 2378). in which case sacrifice a ram [of less than a year. “he placed his foot on their sides” (4841). he took the knife and the ram. Another had¯ adds that when is Muhammad sacrificed rams. According to Ab¯ Huraira. but more than six months’ age]” (4836). PROPER AGENCY It is meritorious to sacrifice the animal with one’s own hand as Muhammad did. and the bone is the knife of the Abyssinians. a The same had¯ tells us that no nail or bone should be used in slaughtering an animal. [and along with it] the name of All¯h is also to be recited” (4846).113 PROPER AGE As there is a proper time for sacrificing. The proper instrument for slaughtering an animal is a sharp knife. for is not animal sacrifice All¯h’s own command? All¯h ordains: a a “The sacrificial camels. is “As for the nail.” He then said to ’Aisha.) The Prophet answered: “Make haste or be careful [in making arrangements for procuring knives] which would let the blood flow. black belly and black circles round the eyes should be brought to him.” and told her to “sharpen it on a stone. the translator explains.

people said. a a Let it be so if you like. Ab¯ Ayy¯b. a and he thus turned upon his heels. that reaches All¯h. FOOD AND DRINK down on their sides eat of them . The worst case is that of Hamza a u b. And then Hamza said: ‘Are you anything but the slaves of my father?’ All¯h’s Messenger came to know that he was intoxicated. a is u u u u a a Sahil b. esting story. and came out” (4881). a new reverence for all living beings. Baiad¯. Muhammad forbade all intoxicating liquors. and All¯h’s Messenger gave me another on that day out of the khums [the fifth reserved a for All¯h and His Messenger]. it is your piety” (Qur¯n 22:37). and began to reprimand him. In animal sacrifice. We offer to our gods what we ourselves eat. and Ubayy b. and he a i a brought his camels along. “Hamza’s eyes were red. there is nothing exceptionable in the Muslim institution of sacrifice. narrates an interi. that you may be grateful” (Qur¯n 22:36). Many ah¯d¯ in this book show Ab¯ Talha. all this changes. he found their “humps were chopped off and their haunches had been cut off and their livers had been taken out. Jabal. HUNTING. We realize that this unregenerate piety is not good enough.” a ’Al¯ reported the matter to Muhammad. but when he returned. Ab¯ Ubaida. the Prophet’s uncle. We made animals subject to you. He tied them up outside. Hamza and “he is in this i house dead drunk in the company of the Ans¯rs with a singing girl. . ’Al¯ the Prophet’s son-in-law. went to where Hamza i was. It seems that the habit of drinking was quite popular with the Companions of Muhammad.” When ’Al¯ asked who had done this. But when a deeper consciousness dawns. . . He cast a glance at All¯h’s a Messenger and then looked towards his knees. DRINKS The twenty-first book is the “Book of Drinks” (Ashriba). Ka’b drinking. We realize that an animal sacrifice can never be a fitting and acceptable offering to any god worthy of man. who put on his mantle. “It is not their meat nor their blood. all liquors in the various stages of fermentation. Liquor was forbidden. and we like to believe that the piety of the act (whatever it may be) goes to God. Ab¯ Duj¯na. and then lifted his eyes and cast a glance at his waist and then lifted his eyes and saw his face.114 CHAPTER 11. Mu’¯z b. a POT AND PIETY On the ordinary level of consciousness on which religions operate.” Some business took ’Al¯ to the house of an ans¯r. We experience a new togetherness. . “There fell to my lot a she-camel out of the spoils of war on the day of Badr. the flesh comes to us. ’Abd al-Muttalib.

a reports: “Nab¯ was prepared for All¯h’s Messenger in the beginning of the night and he iz a would drink it in the morning and the following night and the following day and the night after that up to the afternoon. a is iz ’Aisha reports: “We prepared nab¯ for him [Muhammad] in a waterskin . So long as nab¯ does not turn into liquor. How to reconcile the Prophet’s prohibition with his indulgence? The theologians are not at a loss. together (4896-4912). or hollow stumps (4913-4995). there is not even a disapproval. MILK Muhammad approved of drinking milk. green pitchers. If anything was left out of that he gave it to his servant. Ibn ’Abb¯s. for Satan eats with the left hand and drinks with that hand” (5010). . but the prohibition “was u ifa a u u valid only in the early period of Isl¯m when the people had to be trained for the prohibition a of liquor” (note 2409). gourds.” For Im¯m iz a Ab¯ Han¯ and Q¯zi Ab¯ Y¯suf. the Prophet’s cousin. or gave orders for it to be poured out” (4971). and he would drink it in the morning” (4977). MUHAMMAD AND DRINKING There are many ah¯d¯ to show that the Prophet himself drank nab¯ (4971-4982). .115 ¯ NABIZ Also forbidden was nab¯ a kind of wine made by mixing fresh dates and unripe dates iz. In another tradition. They say: “This prohibition is not a complete prohibition but it implies disapproval.” reports Ab¯ Bakr (4983). We prepared iz nab¯ in the morning and he drank it in the evening and we prepared the nab¯ in the iz iz night. Muhammad says: “None of you should eat with his left hand and drink with the left hand. it is not forbidden. u TABLE MANNERS Etiquette relating to eating and drinking is also given. Muhammad also forbade its preparation in varnished jars. . mention the name of All¯h. he tells ’Umar. “I milked for him [the Prophet] a small quantity of milk and brought it to him and he drank it. . the son of his wife Umm Salama by her first husband: “Boy. and eat with your right hand and eat from a what is near you” (5012).

because Muhammad did so (5072). he ate it and if he did not like it. so I have always liked the pumpkin since that day” (5067). DO NOT FIND FAULT Do not find fault with the food served to you. a MIRACULOUS FEEDING Miraculous feeding after the fashion of Jesus is repeated in Isl¯m too. FOOD AND DRINK One should not drink water while standing (5017-5022). A laudable practice.116 CHAPTER 11. In ordinary course. ’Abdullah b. if one drinks water standing. It is also meritorious to lick one’s fingers after taking one’s food. thanks for the farmer who produced it. It is said about the Prophet that “if he liked anything. thanks for the elements that have gone into making it. one “must vomit” (5022). and thanks for the mothers. PUMPKINS AND CUCUMBERS It is meritorious to eat pumpkin (5067-5069) and also cucumber with dates. The injunction is: “When anyone of you eats food he should not wipe his hand until he had licked it or got it licked by someone else” (5038). but one could do so with water from Zamzam (the well-known well within the precincts of the mosque at Mecca) as Muhammad himself did (5023-5027). for feeding 130 persons (5105). Ka’b reports that “the Messenger of All¯h used to eat food with three fingers. Ab¯ Ayy¯b Ans¯r¯ tells us that the “holy prophet did not take garlic as he was visited by u u ai angels who brought him the message of All¯h” (5099). with the blessing of the Prophet. and he licked a his hand before wiping it” (5040). and cooks who lovingly cooked it and served it. but it is permissible for other Muslims. . Still. HUNTING. he left it” (5121). In fact. sisters and wives. a man should eat with thankfulness in his heart-thanks for the gods that reside in his food. Anas reports: “I saw All¯h’s Messenger going after the pumpkin a round the dish. The roasted a liver of one sheep and two cups containing soup and meat suffice. it should be avoided when one has to talk to eminent persons. GARLIC Muhammad himself did not eat garlic because of its odor (5097).

it is not enough to thank “our Father who art in heaven” for giving “us this day our daily bread. Though we may placate Him with soulful praises and pious thanks. Similarly. Food derived from the spoils ¯ a of war and tribute is a negation of this insight.” Let us pray that this bread is also honest.117 However. What Lord Buddha calls Right Livelihood (samyak ajiviik¯) is a great spiritual truth. it is self-deception to believe that we adore or glorify God by reciting All ah-o-Akbar (“All¯h is Great”) while killing an animal. Be a meat-eater if you like. no God can legitimize it. but one ought not to feel so pious about it. That way we really profane Him. ¯ a negate Him. .


It is permissible to use carpets (5188-5189). Visions. General Behavior. were considered excellent (5179-5180). Decorations. he promised to wash them.Chapter 12 Clothing. for “these are the clothes usually worn by the non-believers” (5173). Poetry. for one who wears it in the world will not wear it in the Hereafter” (5150). “Do not wear silk. The book begins with ah¯d¯ which forbid the use of gold and silver vessels (5126a is 5140). Greetings. SILK Silk is also forbidden. It is also not permissible for a man to wear clothes of yellow color (5173-5178). But Muhammad said: “Burn them” (5175). on the other hand. These were striped and made of coarse cloth. “He who drinks in the vessel of silver in fact drinks down in his belly the fire of Hell” (5126). Dreams The twenty-second book pertains to clothing and decorations (Kit¯b al-Lib¯s wa’la a Z¯ inah). 119 . finding that the Prophet disapproved of them. A man was wearing clothes dyed in saffron. Magic. The mantles of Yemen.

. he told ’Aisha: “The most grievous torment from the Hand of All¯h on the Day of Resurrection would be for those who imitate All¯h in the act a a of His creation” (5261). Ab¯ Quh¯f¯.” reports Maim¯na. CLOTHING. ’Aisha tells us: “We had a curtain which had portraits of birds upon it . but he spared the dog meant for the protection of extensive fields [or big gardens]. the father of Ab¯ Bakr. But why this change or dyeing at all? The Prophet gives the reason: “The Jews and Christians do not dye their hair. but the hair too should not be dyed in saffron (5241). In fact. . met the Prophet to pledge his loyalty to him. he [Muhammad] commanded the killing of the dogs until he announced that the dog kept for the orchards should also be killed. On the day of the conquest of Mecca. so oppose them” (5245). DOGS Many ah¯d¯ tell us that “angels do not enter a house in which there is a dog” (5246a is 5251). Gabriel himself told this to the Prophet. “Then on that very morning. GREETINGS. [they a bring] to my mind [the pleasures on the worldly life” (5255). . whether of birds or animals or men. On that day All¯h would ask these imitators: “Breathe soul into a what you have created” (5268). MAGIC.120CHAPTER 12. The Prophet said: “Change it with something but avoid black” (5244). The angel had promised a rendezvous with Muhammad but did not turn up because meanwhile a puppy had gotten into his house and was sitting under a cot. They effectively keep out the angels. GENERAL BEHAVIOR. DECORATIONS. a veteran u aa u old man of one hundred years.” the Prophet said: “Make a general practice of wearing sandals. for a man is riding as it were when he wears sandals” (5230). . J¯bir reports that “during an expedition in which we all a participated. His head and his beard were white like hyssop. The Messenger of All¯h said to me: Change them. u PICTURES AND STATUES The same is true of statues and pictures in any form. POE SANDALS Sandals are recommended. one of the wives of the Prophet (5248). On seeing portraits on a curtain. HAIR Not only clothes.

Barra means “pious. the book on Ad¯b starts with personal names. ’Abdullah. those who pluck hair from their faces and those who make spaces between their teeth for beautification changing what God has created” (5301).” Muhammad tells us also of women wearing see-through dresses: “women who would be dressed but appear to be naked will not enter paradise” (5310). Muhammad took great a interest in this matter. he “would have never slept with her in the bed. But he also changed the name of one of his wives ila from Barra to Juwair¯ (5334).. “The vilest name in All¯h’s sight is Malik al-Aml¯k (king of kings). having a part of a boy’s head shaved and leaving a part unshaven. Yas¯r (“wealth”). He forbade women to add false hair to their head. We are also told that “All¯h has cursed those women who tattooed and who have a themselves been tattooed. Rab¯h (“profit”). But he forbade giving the following ¯ a a four names to servants: Aflah (“successful”).121 FALSE HAIR AND FACIAL CULTURE Some of Muhammad’s prohibitions relate to practices which are surprisingly modern. i. GENERAL BEHAVIOR AND SALUTATIONS The twenty-third and twenty-fourth books are the “Book of General Behavior” (al-Ad ab ) and the “Book on Salutations and Greetings” (as-Salam). and N¯fi a a a (“beneficial”) (5327). the son of ’Umar. He changed the name of ’Umar’s daughter ’Asiya (“disobedient”) to Jam¯ (“good and handsome”) (5332). tells us that if he found any of these things in his wife.e.” and it is a perfectly good name. iya Muhammad said that the dearest names to All¯h are Subh¯n All¯h (“Hallowed be All a a a ah”). or to pluck their eyebrows (5295-5309).” So is the appela a lation Shahinsh¯h. having the same meaning (5338). Muhammad also disapproved of qaza. ¯ PERSONAL NAMES Curiously. a . This may have been an old ritualistic practice or a thoughtless current fashion (5289-5292). He said that ugly personal names should be replaced with good ones (5332-5334). and al-Hamidulill¯h (“praise be to All¯h”) (5329). The Prophet “cursed the woman who adds false hair and the woman who asks for it” (5298).

a ¯ TAHNIK Tahn¯ is the practice of blessing a newborn infant with religious piety. but not his kunya (a name descriptive of some quality or attribute). “chewed them and then put his saliva in his [the infant’s] mouth. . I would have thrust it into your eyes” (5367). who was using a pointed object of some kind to arrange a the hair on his head. “he should come back” (5354). Az¯n and ik a Iq¯ma are recited in its right and left ears. DON’T PEEP INTO ANOTHER MAN’S HOUSE It is forbidden to peep into the house of another person. A man peeped through a hole in the door at All¯h’s Messenger. and it is not granted. gave birth to a baby. a a When other Muslims objected. Asm¯. GREETINGS. Muhammad called for some dates. and some chewed dates are rubbed over its a palate. Then Muhammad pronounced: “He who peeped into the house of people without their consent. POE NAMING INFANTS AFTER MUHAMMAD People who wanted to name their sons after Muhammad were only allowed to use his personal name (Muhammad). MAGIC. He [’Abdullah] went to him [the Holy Prophet] when he had attained the age of seven or eight years in order to pledge allegiance to All¯h’s Messenger” (5344). Q¯sim. a ASKING PERMISSION BEFORE ENTERING A HOUSE One should not enter anybody’s house without his permission. for I am Q¯sim in the sense that I a distribute [the spoils of war] and the dues of Zak¯t amongst you” (5316). GENERAL BEHAVIOR. he went to Muhammad for clarification. When a man seeks permission three times. Muhammad said: “Give him my name but do not give him my kunya.122CHAPTER 12. DECORATIONS. CLOTHING. He then rubbed him and blessed him and gave him the name of ’Abdullah. . The baby was taken to a u Muhammad. All¯h’s Messenger said to him: “If I were to know that you had been a peeping. The first thing that entered his stomach was the saliva of All¯h’s a Messenger . . J¯bir narrates that a man named his newborn babe Muhammad. it is permissible for them to put out his eyes” (5370). . the daughter of Ab¯ Bakr.

But it is different with the People of the Book. Some Jews once made a pun and greeted Muslims by saying as-s¯m-u-’alaikum (“death be upon you”) instead of the usual as-sal¯m-u-alaikum a a (“peace be upon you”).” “But what about the husband’s brother. VEIL ’Umar wanted Muhammad to ask his women to wear the veil. “Husband’s brother is like death. “Do not greet the Jews and the Christians before they greet you and when you meet any one of them on the roads force him to go to the narrowest part of it” (5389). when he seeks your counsel give him.” says ’Aisha a (5397). “All¯h. One day. ‘May All¯h show mercy to a a you’. When the People of the Book (Jews and Christians) offer you salutations. . . and when he dies follow his bier” (5379). When you meet him. when he invites you to a feast accept it.” the Prophet replied a (5400). And all should greet the children (5391-5392). The Prophet himself followed this practice.” His hope was fulfilled. but Muhammad did not respond. “beware of getting into the houses and meeting women. the Exalted and Glorious. offer him greetings. ’Umar called out: “Saud¯.” He did so a “with the hope that the verses pertaining to veil would be revealed. went out to the a fields in the dark to ease herself. or if that cannot be helped. Muhammad also taught his followers to “avoid sitting on the paths”. when the Prophet’s wife Saud¯. who was tall in stature.123 SALUTATIONS AND GREETINGS “Six are the rights of a Muslim over another Muslim . we recognize you.” an ans¯r asked. Muhammad teaches his followers to respond by saying: “Let it be upon you” (5380-5388). . and when he falls ill visit him.’ you say. then “give the path its due right” (5375-5377). and when he sneezes and says: ‘All praise to All¯h. Also. FIRST GREETINGS “The rider should first greet the pedestrian. you should say: “The same to you” (5380). then revealed the verses pertaining to veil. and the pedestrian the one who is seated” (5374).

The angels told Muhammad that “the spell has affected him. 1 On another occasion. 156. but the poison had a delayed effect. or. those who had brought it about.. spells. In fact. As the knots were untied. “could not come at his wives. medicine. ¯ . it had no power over him (5430).124CHAPTER 12. She poisoned the mutton she was asked to cook for Muhammad. poisons. the trees around the well] were like heads of the devils” (5428). The effect of the charm was transmitted “by the comb and by the hair stuck to the comb and the spathe of the date-palm . He had just taken a morsel and finding the taste unusual spat it out. During this period. a u In the same S¯ra.e.” and that “it was Lab¯ b. and deposited at the bottom of a well.” The angels explained that hairs combed from the head of the Prophet had been stolen.” But two angels came and revealed everything: the nature of the sickness. 1 Tabaq at.” A bath is prescribed as its remedy. A’sam id [who cast the spell]. MAGIC.” a And under the influence of the charm. and incantations. in the language of Ibn Ish¯q. he lost his appetite and even became impotent. Muhammad also believed in witchcraft. practice the secret art of casting spells]” (Qur¯n S¯ra 113). the Prophet also seeks refuge “from the mischief of darkness as it u overspreads. tied in eleven knots around a palm branch.e. you should take a bath” (5427). I. a Jewish woman gave Muhammad poisoned mutton. he believed that he himself had once been put under a spell by a Jew and his daughters. The Jewish woman was none other than the unfortunate victim who had seen her father and husband killed in the Prophet’s raid on Khaibar and whom he was now contemplating to marry.” Has this prayer to do with his fear of darkness? His biographers say he was afraid of the dark and would not sit in a dark room unless a lamp was brought for him. a is The Prophet believed that “the influence of an evil eye is a fact. “When you are asked to take a bath from the influence of an evil eye. POE MAGIC AND SPELLS With rather slovenly classification. He sought “refuge with the Lord of the Dawn from the mischief of women who blow on knots [i. the Prophet got well.. of course. its [the well’s] water was yellow like henna a and its trees [i. CLOTHING. Muhammad told ’Aisha: “ ’Aisha.” a Muhammad sent his men there and they found it at the very spot revealed by the angels. he also felt “that he had been doing something whereas in fact he had not been doing that. This saved him for the time being. the “Book of Salutations and Greetings” also contains many ah¯d¯ on magic. it caused his last illness. and the way they did it. DECORATIONS. vol. but. and according to some traditions. GENERAL BEHAVIOR. p. by All¯h.[and that it was] in the well of Zi Arw¯n. GREETINGS.

it is a wonder drug. .” There is also no h¯ma (5507-5516). Among others. i. A delegation that included a leper once came to pay homage to Muhammad. He says that according to some Muslim scholars. 3 ¯ a ¯ NO EVIL OMEN. as several ah ad¯ ¯ is show. the soul of a a slain man took the form of a bird known as h¯ma. don’t go to it. It has a sexual potential. 2 He saw “no harm in the incantation which does not smack of polytheism” (5457). ¯ ¯ 3 Saliva exists in many modes and performs many functions. no epidemic disease. The fever is due to “the intense heat of the Hell. reinforced by the application of his saliva (5459). About the plague he said: “When you hear that it has broken out in a land. which kept crying for the blood of the a slayer until the slayer was killed.e. no ghouls. Cool it down with water. According to the Arab belief of that time. He even granted the sanction of treating snakebite with incantation to a family of ans¯rs (5443). NO HAMA. a The translator extends the area from the Prophet’s four walls and household to the whole of Medina. The Prophet would not meet the leper but sent him a message: “We have accepted your allegiance.” and “no star promising rain. which invoked the name of Al-L ah but not of Al-L at. and when it has broken out in the land where you are. he treated cases of “evil eye” and snakebite.. and it also has the power to confer great spiritual merit. the Apostle of All¯h placed his forefinger upon the ground and then lifted a it by reciting the name of All¯h and said: ‘The dust of our ground with the saliva of any a one of us would serve as a means whereby our illness would be cured with the sanction of All¯h’ ” (5444). a Companion of the Prophet cured a man bitten by a poisonous scorpion with the help of S ura al-F¯tiha. NO INFECTION Muhammad said that there are “no ill omens. On another occasion. LEPROSY Don’t mix with lepers. so you may go” (5541).125 CURES BY INCANTATION Muhammad used to “cure” people with the help of incantations (5442-5457). don’t run out of it” (5493). 2 a ’Aisha reports: “When any person fell ill with a disease or he had any ailment or he had any injury. the word “dust” in the had¯ “refers to the sacred dust of Medina on which had fallen the saliva of the pious is Muslims” (note 2579). Muhammad also taught that there is no infection.” Muhammad says (5484).

the Qur¯n and the Sunn¯h are the source. and the law of causality. but that does not make him a rationalist as we understand the word today. a ¯ KAHINS Muhammad was against k¯hins. MAGIC. “the unluckiness of a horse is that the horse is used not for Jih¯d but for evil designs” (note 2602). including India. and incidentally about how the jinns steal their knowledge of the heavens. There is an interesting had¯ on is shooting stars which tells us what Muhammad believed about the world.are very different. nature.e. he believed in good omens and luck.e.” the translator assures us (note 2603). METEORS Muhammad did not believe in a star promising rain. a belief found in the lore of many countries.126CHAPTER 12. ’Aisha puts it to Muhammad: “Messenger of All¯h! they [k¯hins] at times tell us things which we find true. The two worlds . The a reason for this opposition was personal as well as ideological. And then they [the jinns] mix in it a more than one hundred lies” (5536).” Muhammad a a replies: “That is a word pertaining to truth which a jinn snatches away and then cackles into the ear of his friend [the k¯hin] as the hen does. no divination. “There is no transitive [i. GREETINGS. For pure and unadulterated knowledge of the occult world. a knowla a a edge which he steals from heaven but mixes up with lies. About luck he says: “If a bad luck is a fact. But the source of the knowledge of a k¯hin is the jinn. i.the world of Muhammad and that of the modern rationalist . but good omens please me. The pre-Muslim Arabs believed that meteors symbolized the death or birth of a great man. According to the translator. ¯ a His other ground of opposition was of a more general nature. epidemic] disease.. thou art neither a soothsayer [k¯hin]. “All other avenues of knowledge of the a a unseen world are limited and thus not fully authentic and reliable. ¯ a nor one possessed or mad [majn un]” (Qur¯n 52:29). Muhammad corrected . Muhammad believed that Gabriel was the true source of the knowledge of the unseen world now contained in the Qur¯n and the Sunn¯h. DECORATIONS. personal because he himself was accused of being no better than a k¯hin but wanted to be known as a prophet. GENERAL BEHAVIOR. the woman and the house” (5526). All a ah had assured him that “by the favour of the Lord. POE LUCK Though Muhammad did not believe in divination. then it is in a horse. CLOTHING.. augurs.” he says (5519). soothsayers. and fortune-tellers.

dogs too “cause miscarriage and affect the eyesight adversely. Like snakes. If they narrate which they manage to snatch that is correct.” She asked him: “I find people being happy when they see the dark cloud in the hope that it would bring rain. It seems that Muhammad believed in the hierarchy of angels. but I find that when you see that [the cloud] there is an anxiety on your face.” He replied: “ ’Aisha. the Exalted and the Glorious. ANTS. next come the “dwellers of the heaven”. a is SNAKES. issues a Command when He decides to do a thing. for it may be like the people of ’Ad who saw a cloud formation and thought ‘It is a cloud which would give us rain. and Jinn (72:8-10).” When these different orders communicate with each other. Muhammad explains: “All¯h. In this process of transmission the jinn snatches what he manages to overhear and he carries it to his friends. Then the angels supporting the Throne sing His glory. but they alloy it with lies and make additions to it” (5538). First in rank are the “supporters of the Throne”. the third group lives in the “heaven of the world. As a we have already seen in the chapter on sal¯t (see page 31) Muhammad’s approach even to a phenomena so close to home as clouds and rain and wind was neither scientific nor even poetic but magical and superstitious.127 this belief and provided another explanation. Then those who are near the supporters of the Throne ask those supporters of the Throne: What has your Lord said? And they accordingly inform them what He says. then sing dwellers of the heaven who are near to them until this glory of God reaches them who are in this heaven of the world. The snatching of the heavenly news by the jinn is referred to in several places in the Qur¯n. .’ but were destroyed by it” (Qur¯n 46:24. The interested reader may look up the S uras Hijr (15:16-18). His view is a little complicated but worth quoting. Their sight filled him with fear. S¯ff¯t (37:7-10). WINDS AND CLOUDS The fact is that the world of Muhammad is as weird and full of imps and jinns as the world of the k¯hins and has little in common with the world as moderns understand it. a ¯ a a Mulk (67:5). CATS ’Aisha reports that the Prophet “commanded the killing of a snake having stripes over it. I am afraid that there may be a calamity in it. ’Aisha tells us that when he “saw dark clouds or wind. for it affects eyesight and miscarries pregnancy” (5542).” So they too should be killed (5545). the jinn has his chance. the signs of fear were depicted on his face. And when the angels see the jinn they attack them with meteors. Then the dwellers of heaven of the world seek information from them until this information reaches the heaven of the world. had¯ 1963).

among them Ka’b ibn M¯lik. He himself was described by some as a poet but declined the honor because it detracted from the dignity of apostleship. as in the cases of ’Asm¯. It is forbidden to kill a cat (5570-5576). POE Ants fared better. he ordered that the colony of the ants should be burnt. The book ends on a compassionate note. ¯ ¯ . it is not the speech of a poet nor of a soothsayer. GENERAL BEHAVIOR. This taught many of the a u others to behave better. CLOTHING. the centenarian poet Ab¯ ’Afak. If you do not do that. 597. a This is only a part of the story and does not represent the positive side of the Prophet’s attitude toward poets. like Ibn al-Ziba’r¯ and Hubayra b. “Filling the belly of a person with pus is better than stuffing his brain with poetry. 4 a Ka’b took his brother’s advice and one day appeared before Muhammad without revealing his identity. but this was due to the intervention of All¯h Himself. for he does not kill anyone who comes to him in repentance. warned him of the fate suffered by many other opponents of Isl¯m and advised him to either submit or seek asylum somewhere else.128CHAPTER 12. even by the method of assassination. Muhammad also employed and honored some of the more pliable poets. “Catch the Satan.” the Messenger of All¯h added (5611). who was already a convert. Hass¯n ibn S¯bit. a Muhammad took a utilitarian view of poets. he did not think highly of them. the only status he cared to claim. POETRY. It is also meritorious to supply water to thirsty animals (5577-5579). GREETINGS. and Ka’b ibn Zuhair. . . “If you have any use for your life then come quickly to the Apostle. One relates to the use of correct words. When Mecca was conquered. and Ka’b ibn Ashraf. At first Ka’b ibn Zuhair put himself under the ban by writing poems unfavorable to the Muslims.” he vehemently insisted (Qur¯n 69:40-42). Ka’b b. “This is the speech of an honoured Apostle. Would you accept him as such if he came to you?” Ka’b inquired of the 4 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. and the third is on visions (kit¯b al-r uy¯). the daughter of a Marw¯n. a a ¯ a At a place known as ’Arj. “An ant had a bitten a prophet . according to Ibn Ish¯q. And All¯h a revealed to him: Because of an ant’s bite you have burnt a community from amongst the communities which sing My praise” (5567). VISIONS The next three books are very small. a u had already fled in all directions. DECORATIONS. CORRECT WORDS. another is on poetry (kit¯b al-shi’r). then get to some safe place. his brother. Muhammad once saw a poet reciting a poem.” Muhammad commanded. MAGIC. Ab¯ Wahb. Zuhair has come to ask security from you as a repentant Muslim. “O Apostle.” he advised. The more inconvenient ones he had eliminated. He a wrote Ka’b that the Apostle had killed some of the men in Mecca who had satirized him and that the Quraish poets who were left. The lasta a a mentioned was the son of a famous poet of his times. True. p.

129 Prophet. Receiving an affirmative answer, he said, “I am Ka’b, the son of Zuhair.” Some of the people around Muhammad wanted his permission to kill him, but he was spared. Then Ka’b sought the Prophet’s permission to recite a qas¯ in his praise. The perida mission was readily given. He began reciting: He surpassed all the prophets in constitution and disposition, Nor did any approach him either in knowledge or nobleness. But when he came to the lines, Indeed, the Prophet is a Light providing guidance to the world And a drawn sword from the armoury of All¯h [suy uf All¯h] a ¯ a the Prophet was so delighted that he took off his mantle and bestowed it on Ka’b. The poem came to be known in the Muslim world as the “Poem of the Mantle” (Qas¯ idatul-Burda). The mantle became a precious heirloom of the poet’s family and was bought from one of his descendants by a future Khal¯ Mu’awiyah, for 40,000 dirhams. The ifa, khirqai-shar¯ (holy mantle) became successively the property of the Ummayads and then if of the Abbasides. Some say it was burned when Baghdad was sacked by the Tartars; others believe that it passed into the hands of the Ottoman caliphate. Whether real or fake, the Ottoman mantle is taken out as a national standard in times of great emergency.

Playing chess is also forbidden. “He who played chess is like one who dyed his hand with the flesh and blood of a swine,” says Muhammad (5612).

The next book, again very small, is on visions and dreams. A bad dream is called hulm, an ordinary one man¯m and al-r uy¯ is a heavenly vision. a ¯ a Muhammad says that good dreams come from All¯h and bad ones from Satan (5613). a If one has a bad dream (hulm), he should do two things: “he should spit thrice on his left side” (5615-5616) and “not disclose it to any one” (5618). But a good dream one may reveal to his beloved friends (5618-5619). Muhammad says that “the vision of a believer is the forty-sixth part of prophecy” (5622-5630); in other ah¯d¯ it becomes “the seventieth part” (5632-5634). The differa is

130CHAPTER 12. CLOTHING, DECORATIONS, GENERAL BEHAVIOR, GREETINGS, MAGIC, POE ence between the forty-sixth and the seventieth parts “depends upon the difference in the standard of piety” of the dreamer, as the translator explains (note 2618). Here too is some bad news for professional psychoanalysts. “Do not narrate to the people the vain sporting of Satan with you in your sleep,” Muhammad advises his followers (5641). Muhammad also makes a very self-satisfied statement: “He who saw me in a dream in fact saw me, for the satan does not appear in my form” (5635).

Muhammad also narrates some of his own dreams and gives their interpretations. Once in a dream, he was made to wear “two bangles” on his hands. At this he felt “a sort of burden” upon him (for a “bangle is the ornament of women,” the translator explains); Muhammad then was made to blow upon them and they both disappeared. “I interpreted the two bangles as the two great liars who would appear after me and the one amongst them was ’Anas¯ the inhabitant of San’a and the other one was Musailima the inhabitant i of Yam¯ma,” Muhammad says (5650). a Both of these men lived at the time of the Prophet. Both claimed prophethood; Musailima al-Kazz¯b (“the greater liar” as he is called by Muslim theologians) even claimed a a joint share in the prophethood of Muhammad. ’Anas¯ and Musailima both led revolts i and were killed.

Chapter 13

Muhammad on Muhammad
The twenty-eighth book pertains to the “Excellent Qualities of the Prophet” (Kit¯b a al-Faz¯’il). a

The book opens with the Prophet’s own self-estimation. “Verily All¯h granted eminence a to Kin¯n from amongst the descendants of Ism¯’il and He granted eminence to the Quraish a a amongst Kin¯ns and He granted eminence to Ban¯ H¯shim amongst the Quraish and He a u a granted me eminence from the tribe of Ban¯ H¯shim” (5653). u a “I recognize the stone in Mecca which used to pay me salutations before my advent as a Prophet and I recognize that even now” (5654). So it seems that a stone can pay but not receive salutations. Idolatry in reverse. “I shall be preeminent among the descendants of Adam on the Day of Resurrection and I will be the first intercessor and the first whose intercession will be accepted” (5655). Muhammad uses an effective simile to show the difference between himself and the five or six Apostles that he recognized as having preceded him. The religion of the other apostles is like a building “imposing and beautiful” but for one brick. “I am that final brick,” he says (5673-5676). With his coming, the edifice of religion becomes perfect, and there is no room or use left for any future prophet. “I have come to finalize the chain of Apostles,” he says (5677). With him the old religions are abrogated and the possibility of any new one is exhausted. So any new religion or revelation must be a mischievous innovation. Muhammad uses another simile to characterize three types of people who receive his 131



message, which itself is like “rain falling upon the earth”. The first are like “a good piece of land which receives the rainfall eagerly” and produces “herbage and grass abundantly.” These people absorb the message of the Prophet and develop understanding about it and become a source of benefit to others. The second ones are like a “land hard and barren,” which itself grows nothing but retains water for the benefit of others. These people have no deep understanding of the message but “acquire knowledge of religion and impart it to others.” The third type is like a barren land which neither absorbs nor retains the rainwater. These people do not “accept the guidance of All¯h with which I [Muhammad] a have been sent” (5668). In yet another simile, Muhammad tells the believers that while he is trying to save them from the hellfire, they are rushing headlong into it. “My example and your example is that of a person who lit the fire and insects and moths begin to fall in it and he would be making efforts to take them out, and I am going to hold you back from fire, but you are slipping from my hand” (5672).

A little further in the book, Muhammad says: “I am Muhammad and I am Ahmad, and I am al-M¯hl [the obliterator] by whom unbelief would be obliterated and I am H¯shir a a [the gatherer] at whose feet mankind will be gathered, and I am ’Aqib [the last to come] after whom there will be no prophet.” He is also Muqaff¯ (the last in succession), and also i the Prophet of Repentance as well as the Prophet of Mercy (5810-5813). The statement will have Vedantic echoes for some ears; and many Hindus, predisposed to find “synthesis” and not caring whether it is a false one, may seize on this had¯ to is “prove” that Vedantism and Prophetism are the same. But in fact the two approaches are widely apart in spirit.

We learn from thirty-three ah¯d¯ (5680-5712), on Muhammad’s own assurance, that a is he will be at the Cistern in heaven waiting to receive his followers. “I shall be there ahead of you at the Hauz Kausar,” he tells them (5712). The Hauz Kausar, or Cistern, is a great water reservoir in Paradise, requiring “a month’s journey to go around it” (5684). All the followers of Muhammad will be presented to him here except those who disobeyed the Prophet and made “innovations” in his religion. According to some authorities quoted by the translator, these are the people “who turned apostates after the death of the Holy Prophet and were killed by the army of Hazrat Ab¯ Bakr” (note 2630). u

He then gave him another a hundred and yet another hundred. but when it did. He found Muhammad most valorous. Ab¯ Bakr gave the man a handful u of coins.” But when God intends to cause destruction to an ummah. who was the Prophet’s servant for nine or ten ¯ is years.” The Prophet died before the wealth arrived from Bahrain. MUHAMMAD’S GENEROSITY Muhammad gave freely from his war booty not only to his followers but also to other important chiefs to “incline” them to Isl¯m. most courageous. I would give you so much. Another had¯ tells us that after he was granted a victory at Hunain by All¯h. however. I counted them as five hundred dinars and he [Ab¯ u Bakr] said: Here is double of this for you. He promised someone: “In case we get wealth from Bahrain. the is a Prophet gave one hundred camels to Safw¯n b. many of them by Anas. tells us that whenever the Prophet “had to choose between two things he adopted the easier one. Ummaya.133 A PROPHET’S DOUBLE ROLE When an ummah is safe from the wrath of God. This was called his charitable disposition. Muhammad’s promises of booty were fulfilled even posthumously.” A person came and Muhammad gave him a large flock of sheep and goats. “He a went back to his people and said: My people. . “He [Muhammad] was the most detested person amongst people in my eyes. He calls back his Messenger as “a harbinger and recompense in the world to come. He punishes it through His living Apostle.” the beneficiary tells us (5731).” the recipient said (5730). The man was overwhelmed. embrace Isl¯m. It gives many ahad¯ on this subject. provided it was no sin” (5752). All¯h “destroys it [the a Ummah] as the Apostle witnesses it and he cools his eyes by destruction as they had belied him and disobeyed his command” (5679). ’Aisha. But he continued giving to me until now he is the dearest of people to me. ADULATION The book also tells us what Muhammad’s followers thought of him. a Anas says that the Prophet never failed to give when “asked for anything in the name of Isl¯m. Anas adds that this man “embraced Isl¯m for a the sake of the world but later he became Muslim until Isl¯m became dearer to him than a the world” (5729). for Muhammad gives so much a charity as if he has no fear of want” (5728). “He asked me to count them. “sublimest among people and the most generous amongst them and he was the bravest of men” (5715-5717).

One is called jih¯d. for I give property to the M ulfat Qul ub. Anas “never smelt musk or ambergris and found its fragrance as sweet as the fragrance of All¯h’s Messenger” (5760). or charity. a is complexion. “Do not be angry. so All- . The m ulfat qul ub are nominal ¯ ¯ Muslims. This is done in order “to rivet their hearts to faith” more securely.134 CHAPTER 13. and even heels. “He put on a red mantle over him. a THE PROPHET’S HAIR There are many ah¯d¯ on the Prophet’s hair. The hair grew in the lobes of his ears. His mother collected the Prophet’s sweat a in a bottle. a is He used to part his hair. they are convinced by more palpable economic and political advantages. appearance. and never have I seen anyone more handsome than All¯h’s Apostle” (5770). THE PROPHET’S APPEARANCE Al-Bar¯ says that Muhammad was “neither very tall nor short-statured” (5771). Ibn ’Abb¯s says the following on the subject: “The People of the a Book [Jews and Christians] used to let their hair fall on their forehead and the polytheists used to part it on their heads.” Muhammad tells his faithful followers.” His body a was also fragrant. hair. Anas “never touched brocade or silk and found it as soft as the body of All¯h’s Messenger” (5759). eyes. a THE PROPHET’S BODILY CHARACTERISTICS: FRAGRANCE There are many ah¯d¯ about the Prophet’s bodily characteristics: his face. In the prophetic theology both acts are meritorious. the oil-rich sheikhs are following a holy and hoary tradition. He a also found his face very handsome. ¯ ¯ according to a tradition quoted in Mirkhond’s Persian biography of the Prophet. the other sadaqa. The Prophet’s body was soft. and All¯h’s Messenger liked to conform his behaviour to a the People of the Book in matters in which he received no command from God. His perspiration “shone like pearls. In their new mission work in India and other countries of Asia and Africa. She told Muhammad: “That is your sweat which we mix in our perfume and it becomes the most fragrant perfume” (5761). Rob Peter to pay Paul. MUHAMMAD ON MUHAMMAD Even prophets are not above using material inducements to win converts. or what Mahatma Gandhi calls in another context “rice Christians”.

when a revelation descended upon Muhammad. THE SEAL OF PROPHETHOOD His followers believed that Muhammad carried the “seal of prophethood” even physically as a protuberance on his back. . younger u than he. and at times an Angel in the form of a human being comes to me and speaks . His hair was collected. . dyed their hair “with pure henna” (5779-5789). .135 ah’s Messenger let fall his hair upon his forehead. also saw it “on his back as if it were a pigeon’s egg” a (5790). the “colour of his face underwent a a change” (5766). under its influence. Salama. to him the had¯ is a “clear proof of the fact that All¯h’s Messenger received is a wahy [revelation] from the Lord. He stayed in Medina for ten years (5799-5809). PHYSICAL CHANGES UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF WAHY According to ’Aisha. Umm i. and his head was lowered (5767). Furthermore. Muhammad’s wife. Muhammad himself says that at times wahy “comes to me like the ringing of a bell and that is most severe for me . In fact. in addition to what is contained in the Qur¯n. J¯bir. That the Prophet reverted to the ways of the polytheists after following the Jewish practice shows. once saw Gabriel talking to Muhammad and mistook the angel for Dihya Kalb¯ (6006). . Another man. ” (5765). . a and he died at the age of sixty-three (5794-5798). that a revelation was involved in the matter. Muhammad had some white hair but he did not dye it. and then he began to part it after this” ¯ (5768). Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar. The reference is to Dihya Kalb¯ a young follower of his of striking beauty. Anas reports that when the Prophet “got his hair cut by the barber. his Companions came round him and they eagerly wanted that no hair should fall but in the hand of a person” (5750). i Muhammad was commissioned as a prophet by All¯h when he was forty years old. and he a acted according to it” (note 2639). ’Abdullah b. According to Ub¯da. “his forehead perspired” (5764). . Sarjis says that he “saw the seal of Prophethood between his shoulders on the left side of his shoulder having spots on it like moles” (5793). according to the translator.

I have the best knowledge amongst them” (5814). they will not really believe until they make thee a judge of what is in dispute among them. When Muhammad.e. a The test of true faith in All¯h is for the believer to submit willingly to every decision a made by His Apostle. It sufficed him . but the ans¯r openly said that it favored Zubair. everyone was enabled to perform ablution. A small quantity of water was brought to Muhammad.” As a result. and find in this no dislike of what thou decidest and submit with full submission” (Qur¯n 4:65. Muhammad a gave his decision. “I saw water spouting from his fingers and the people performing ablution until the last amongst them performed it. by the Lord. a practical man. i. learned this. I do not think this approach can go very far. in which the Prophet strikes a more modest note. MIRACLES The book also reports many miracles. but Muslim reformers and “innovators” have to make the best of it. then do accept it. but when he placed his hand in the vessel. Muhammad did or said something that some of the Companions did not approve. and do not go after my personal opinion. mostly patterned after those of Jesus. but when I say to you anything on behalf of All¯h. for I do not a attribute lie to All¯h. the Exalted and Glorious” (5830). combining the male with the female tree for a larger yield.. a This is the only instance of its kind but a godsend for Muslim reformers who seek the emancipation of secular thought from the clutches of the ulemas. he stood up and delivered an address: “What has happened to the people to whom there was conveyed on my behalf a matter for which I granted permission and they disapproved it and avoided it? By All¯h. Muhammad said: “I do not find it of any use.” the irrepressible Anas tells us (5657). Muhammad once passed by as some people were grafting date-palm trees.his father’s sister’s son. for it was just a personal opinion of mine. the Prophet gives someone half a wasq of barley. who was the Prophet’s a cousin . When this reaction was conveyed to the Prophet. The Prophet’s color changed and All¯h sent him this a verse: “Nay. he said: “If there is any use of it. in another three hundred (5658). Sometimes. is. Once there was a dispute between Zubair and an ans¯r. MUHAMMAD ON MUHAMMAD THE PROPHET HAD THE BEST KNOWLEDGE The Prophet had the best knowledge. people no longer grafted their trees and the yield declined. had¯ 5817). On another occasion. then they should do it.136 CHAPTER 13. a is But there is one had¯ rather unusual. In one place. But he has two options to offer about the number of people seeking ablution. and therefore it was obligatory for the believers to follow him obediently. he tells us that their number was “between fifty and eighty” (5656).

He knew his own people. you would be eating out of it and it would have remained intact for you. Speaking of himself and Jesus. served a still greater purpose. when an ans¯r offered a a price that was not acceptable to him. a is Abraham. Therefore. It provided him with an apostolic lineage. What he spoke was not merely the voice of All¯h but also the voice of all the apostles that had come a before him. But when he failed in his bid. though on his own terms. and in making that bid adopted some of their beliefs and practices and also gave recognition to their apostles. I a am a Zimmi [thus need your protection] by a covenant. Muhammad says: “Prophet’s are brothers in faith. On the battlefield. a a chiding him for invoking Moses when “All¯h’s Messenger is living with us. a dispute rose. Their religion is. the tribes allied with them.” Muhammad chided the ans¯r and a told him: “Don’t make distinction amongst the Prophet’s of All¯h” (5853-5854). Who chose Moses amongst mankind. the Arab Bedouins. To the Jews and Christians. narrated the whole story. The Jews were already second-class citizens and were treated roughly by the believer-hoodlums in Muhammad’s own day. however. Recognizing the other prophets.” The ans¯r gave him a blow on the face. OTHER APOSTLES At the end of the book. “Had you not weighed it. and supplicated him. he made another use of these apostles-he used them against their own followers. and Moses. the Jew said: “By All¯h. During the dispute. having different mothers. Muhammad comes as the last of the apostles and abrogates all previous revelations. the neighboring Jews and Christians. he offered his leadership. a Jew was selling goods. on the day of Uhud. Muhammad’s world was not very large. For example.137 and his family and his guests till the curious one weighed it. there are ah¯d¯ on the “merits” of other apostles like Jesus.” The Jew went a to Muhammad.” J¯bir heard a Muhammad telling him (5661). those who did not believe in him did not in fact believe in their own apostles. and therefore they were as good as apostates. But he could not . PEOPLE OF THE COVENANT OR OBLIGATION (Al-zimma’ Some ah¯d¯ on the “merits” of Moses reveal an interesting fact: the zimm¯ did a is is not originate with ’Umar but were already there in the time of the Prophet. Sa’d saw Gabriel and Michael on the right and left sides of the Prophet “in white clothes” (5713-5714). saying: “Abu’l-Q¯sim. one and there is no apostle between us [between Jesus and himself]” (5836). a This is the liberalism we have found from Muhammad at his rare best.

An exclusive concept of God leads to an exclusive a a concept of ummah. seldom both. . MUHAMMAD ON MUHAMMAD arrive at the still larger truth which declares: Don’t make a distinction between different ummahs. for they are all part of one human brotherhood.138 CHAPTER 13. for they all express the same Truth. an attitude of either/or. don’t make a distinction between different gods. for one is also the other. don’t make a distinction between AlL¯h and Al-L¯t. This is so with other religions of Semitic origin too.

¯ THE MERITS OF ABU BAKR SIDD¯ IQ The original name of Ab¯ Bakr Sidd¯ was ’Abdu’l Ka’bah. he answered: “ ’Aisha. Ab¯ i a u Bakr.” the maiden being ’Aisha.Chapter 14 The Prophet’s Companions The twenty-ninth book is on the “Merits of the Companions” (Kit¯b Faz¯’il Al-Sah a a abah) of the Prophet. Husain. ’Aisha’s 139 . a other men associated with events and occasions important in the eyes of the Muslims of the days of the Prophet. Ab¯ Bakr became Isl¯m’s first Khal¯ u a ifa after Muhammad. but he soon came to be known by another name. Muhammad had a high regard for Ab¯ Bakr’s services.” his lieutenants and relatives ¯ like Ab¯ Bakr. To be saved. his wives like Khad¯ ’Aisha. faith and loyalty to the leader are the supreme virtues. ’Al¯ Hasan. and Zainab. In totalitarian ideologies and creeds. “If I were to choose as my bosom u friend I would have chosen the son of Ab¯ Quh¯fa as my bosom friend. like the Battle of Badr and the “Oath of Allegiance under the Tree” (Bay’at al-Rizw¯n) at Hodeibia in March A. members of his family like F¯tima. it is enough to be subservient. All of these people are praised not because they had a larger vision or a deeper humanity or a wider sense of justice than others but solely on one basis: their loyalty and utility to Muhammad’s person and cause. It praises Muhammad’s “Companions. and some loyal ans¯rs and ija. Muhammad changed his u iq name to ’Abdu’llah Ibn Ab¯ Quh¯fa. D. and u a a i. ’Umar. and ’Usm¯n. whom Muhammad betrothed when she was six and married when she was nine. 628 (those who took this oath were a promised by Muhammad that they would never enter the fire of hell).” Muhammad said u a (5873). “the father of the maiden. Salama. When Muhammad was asked whom he loved best. The followers need have no other.

Ab¯ Bakr declared himself the Khal¯ of Isl¯m. ’Ali a respectively. pp. her father. 529). ’Ub¯da. or I shall put this house to fire and burn you all. I said. i submitted to Ab¯ Bakr’s Caliphate.she was sleeping in another hut at this time. As soon as Muhammad died. the Prophet’s cousin and uncle. Outside.140 CHAPTER 14. They locked the room from inside and secretly buried the body during the night in the very room in which he had died. ’Ub¯da and someone said that a a we killed him.” He told them: “We are the Ameers. u Zubair. walked toward him but his foot got entangled in the carpet. “In doing this. ’Umar’s men jumped on him and brought him under control (T ar¯ Tabar¯ vol. made the most of his dead body. 1 The story a is repeated by Tabar¯ 2 i. during the conflict around the question of succession that arose after Muhammad’s death. Ab¯ Bakr came to power through a coup d’´tat. Ab¯ Sufy¯n taunted him that “only two ignoble things would bear u u a their beatings and injustice so patiently: A tent nail and a village donkey” (Ibid. we jumped on Sa’d b. The next day. 1 2 . ¯ ¯ ’Umar with his party also went to the house of ’Al¯ where H¯shimites had forgathered.” and that the “Arabs will recognize authority only in this clan of Quraish. ’Aisha’s report is even more to the point: “All¯h’s a Messenger in his last illness asked me to call Ab¯ Bakr. u so that he might write a document. The ans¯rs met a a in the hall of Ban¯ S¯’ida to choose Sa’d b. was kept in the dark about it . 279. one of their own tribesmen. when ’Al¯ ¯ ikh i.” Muhammad answered (5878). his favorite wife. Eventually. and you are our Wazeers. the u e ¯ and ’Abb¯s. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS father.” ’Umar threatened them. ‘God kill him. Ab¯ Bakr told the Medinans that the Quraish were the “best of the Arabs u in blood and country. Ab¯ Bakr. the struggle raged between the ans¯rs and the Emigrants.. as the u a a chief.’ ” ’Umar reports according to Ibn Ish¯q. and her brother too. 527-528). u ifa a S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. “To Ab¯ u Bakr. When Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar got wind of this. with a sword in his hand. for he feared that someone else might be desirous of succeeding him” (5879). a vow of obedience to Ab¯ Bakr. But this was not acceptable to the Meccan party. p. struggle for power began in earnest. and ’Umar in that order” (5876). I. “Either take the i. and Ab¯ Bakr was “chosen” as u the Ameer of Isl¯m. p. Even ’Aisha.” When this drew a protest from the ans¯rs. even half-believingly. they hurried to the spot with their own u supporters. it was proposed that each party should choose its own separate a Ameer. they kept it to themselves and allowed no one else to take a hand in preparing it for burial. u There are ah¯d¯ justifying the succession of Ab¯ Bakr that may have been manufaca is u tured by their authors. A woman came to Muhammad during his last sickness and asked him whom she should go to when he was no longer there.

’Umar wept when he was told about it. however. I went u u out and there went out too Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar. ’Umar. and ’Umar that they be a killed.” When he inquired. and in case of the prisoners of a im. “I came and there came a u too Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar. Muhammad found himself “in Paradise and a woman performing ablution by the side of a palace. In fact All¯h vindicated ’Umar more than once.” Muhammad observed (5885). the place of the Jewish Temple. ’Umar “caught hold of the clothes of All¯h’s Messenger and said: All¯h’s Messenger. and strong in his hatred. and died in a state of perverse rebellion” (Qur¯n 9:84). the direction was changed to Mecca. So Muhammad thought of ’Umar’s feelings and turned back and went away. Isl¯m carried its a a hatred of its enemies even beyond the grave. by a divine injunction. “Could I at all feel any jealousy about you?” he said to Muhammad (5898). ’Khatt¯b and Ab¯ Bakr were an inseparable pair. Later on. And lo. ’Abb¯s.141 ¯ THE EXCELLENT QUALITIES OF ’UMAR B. . are a a you going to offer prayer. I entered and there entered too Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar. Once Muhammad was persuaded to offer a funeral prayer for someone whom the Muslims called a hypocrite. In fact. KHATTAB ’Umar b. narrow-minded. Badr” (5903).” and shown how the divine injunction merely corroborated what ’Umar already stood for. All¯h chided the Prophet and told him that a greed for gain in the shape of ransom should have no part in his calculations. In case of the Station of Ibr¯h¯ in case of the observance of the veil. The third incident refers to the Quraish prisoners. u ’Umar was loyal to Muhammad. All¯h revealed the following verse: “Nor a do thou ever pray for one of them that dies. one of whom was the Prophet’s uncle. . a But Muhammad persisted. he was told that it (it is not clear whether it stands for the woman or the palace or both) was for ’Umar. modestly mentions a only three. We have already recounted the incident about the veil in our discussion of the “Book of Salutations and Greetings. as he prayed. whereas All¯h has forbidden to offer prayer for him?” (5904). nor stand at his grave. while asleep. Muhammad accepted Bakr’s advice in this particular case. ’Umar was fanatical. Had it not been for a previous . Bakr had advised that they be freed for ransom. The Muslim doctors mention fifty cases a in which ’Umar’s ideas became Qur¯nic revelations. . and that his first duty as a Prophet was to engage in slaughter in the land: “It is not for a Prophet to have captives until he has made slaughter in the land . but All¯h concorded a with the general approach of ’Umar. The first instance refers to the fact that Muhammad and his followers prayed facing Jerusalem. Once. during the first fifteen months of their stay in Medina. a course which ’Umar had advocated even earlier. “My Lord concorded with my Judgments on three occasions. for they rejected God and His Apostle.

but u he drew only “two buckets”. a True. who provided it with a theory. He forged new instrumentalities.” he said (4360). a new incentive. the son of Soheil. which weakened a man’s old ties and strengthened his new ones as a means of increasing his “ummah consciousness. It was a feather in one’s ideological cap. But if a man was a captive or was otherwise in his power. a This role of ’Umar’s is brought out in several ah¯d¯ In a dream Muhammad saw a is. a ’Umar is highly honored in Isl¯mic history for his role in the spread of Arab imperialism. Then Ab¯ Bakr took hold of the leather bucket. tried to persuade Ab¯ Jandal. He put every Arab. p. These ah¯d¯ we are told. you are beaten now. ’Umar’s contribution too was considerable. But after him. “Give ’Aqil [’Al¯ brother] to ’Al¯ that he may cut off his head.” “Is a that the manner of speech for a captive infidel towards a Believer?” asked ’Umar as he cut off his head with his sword. a founder par excellence. himself drawing water from a tank. a Meccan who was captured in the Battle of Badr. he made it clear. on another occasion. 3 On another occasion. In the Muslim annals. a severe penalty would have reached you for the ransom you took” a (Qur¯n 8:67-68).” The man said. and the necessary religious rhetoric.” This was also the most effective way of proving one’s loyalty to the new creed and the new leader. spread of Muslim hegemony. it was something to be proud of. 110.” The story is quoted in full in 3 W¯qid¯ quoted in Muir. there was also “weakness in his drawing.” Then ’Umar took over with real strength. and said to him tauntingly. a The same psychology was at work when ’Umar. “Hand them over to us so that we may cut off their heads. successfully working out a grand model for his successors to imitate. vol. as we have already seen. If one killed a parent or a brother or a cousin for the sake of All¯h. we find that ’Umar needed no great provocation to flourish his sword but was no great warrior on the battlefield. He met Mabad ibn Wahb. “Nay.142 CHAPTER 14. an ideology. “Well. But why should a man be made to slay his own kith and kin so pointedly? This agreed with the requirements of the new creed. Killing captives in cold blood was cruel enough. ’Umar advised similar treatment for seventy other prisoners. refer to ’Umar’s future role in the a is. a i. his name appears only once. by L¯t and Uzza.” said Muhammad (5890-5896).” he told Muhammad. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS ordainment from All¯h. III. An Arab. its real founder was Muhammad himself. to kill his own father because the father was merely one u of the “idolators whose blood is equivalent to that of dogs. then ’Umar was quite brave with his sword. In the lists of the slayers of the polytheists in the Battles of Badr and Uhud. provided a new taste for booty. and i’s i hand over such and such relative to me that I may cut off his head. even including newborn babes. a continuing motive. . Life of Mahomet. had no other function except to be a coloniser and a soldier of Isl¯mic imperialism. “I did not see a person stronger than he drawing water. on the state’s payroll.

Hash¯m b. al-Mugh¯ a ira. he was more considerate toward his living kinsmen. members of the Party were encouraged to denounce their parents and close relatives and inform on them. Umm Kuls¯m.143 Mirkhond’s biography of the Prophet. “Let me off with his head! By All¯h. 5 id’s It is difficult to accept this attitude. did not like this. releasing him without any ransom. He was kind to Abu’l ’As b. Only a few decades ago. I was always afraid unless martyrdom atoned for them.” Those who indulged in such unfilial behavior were honored as heroes. It was supposed to strengthen their “class consciousness. vol. al-’Abb¯s. who replied. who was taken prisoner i. “You are under the impression that I killed your father. 507. And though he sent his parents and uncle to hellfire. p. trying to correct Sa’¯ mistaken impression. and also to spare his uncle. al-’As.” ’Umar said to Sa’¯ b. a ¯ ’USMAN B.” he said. The only man he was able to slay in the Battles of Badr and Uhud was his maternal uncle. ’Aff¯n converted to Isl¯m because of his love for Ruqayya. in Russia and even in China. 4 ’Umar was fortunate in this respect. the man is a false Muslim. ¯ ¯ . Ab¯ Huzayfa. In the same battle. But one Muslim. Muhammad gave him another of his daughters. part II. “O Ab¯ Hafs. 739. The ethics of this practice was valid for the followers but not necessarily for the Prophet. he was much troubled. p. II. “As a matter of fact I killed my maternal uncle id al-’As b. ought u the face of the apostle’s uncle to be marked with the sword?” he said to ’Umar. al-Rab¯ his son-in-law. ¯ ¯ 6 ¯ S irat Ras ul All ah.” he said aloud. “Are we to kill our fathers and sons and our brothers and our families and leave al-’Abb¯s? By All¯h. who a u had participated in the slaying of his own father. in the Battle of Badr. When this reached the ears of Muhammad. 301. whom he married. But there is nothing unusual about it. Muhammad also ordered his followers not to kill any member of the Ban¯ H¯shim. a u “I never felt safe after my words that day. the family to which u a he belonged.” Ab¯ Huzayfa used to say. This story is narrated a 6 by Ibn Ish¯q. S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. Similar ideologies and attitudes lead to similar values and usages. The same things have taken place in our own time under Communism. Rauzat-us-Safa. p. ’Usm¯n was somewhat of a dandy. so contrary to human nature and custom. u According to Muslim tradition.” He was killed as a martyr in the Battle of al-Yam¯ma. After she died. one of the daugha a a ters of Muhammad. if I a a meet him I will flash my sword in him. ’AFFAN ’Usm¯n b. When the Emigrants a 4 5 Mirkhond.

’ALI B. Hasan.” Other doctors of theology and law. he arranged his clothes and a covered his thigh and shank. ’Usm¯n became the third Khal¯ of Isl¯m and a ifa a died. a a family. “All¯h’s Messenger was in is a one of the gardens of Medina [he had seven]. . I remind you of your duties to the members of my family. with great ingenuity. From the arguments advanced on both sides. is receiving a visitor. the Book of All¯h .” For his part the Prophet called ’Al¯ F¯tima. at the hands of his brethren in faith. From this had¯ some Muslim doctors have derived a rule of decorum that when one is. and its way of arriving a at truth. But when ’Usm¯n came. “the thigh of a person is not that part of the body which should be necessarily covered. There is another interesting had¯ given under this head. ’Aisha reports that the Prophet would receive Bakr and ’Umar while lying in bed with his thigh or his shank uncovered. a convert from the proletarian strata. therefore. saying.” ’Umar and ’Usm¯n also visited the Prophet u a under the same circumstances and received the same tidings (5909). Muhammad had once told ’Al¯ “You are in the same i: position with relation to me as Aaron [Harun] was in relation to Moses but with this explicit difference that there is no prophet after me” (5913). did not agree with this conclusion. . It can be subtle about nothing[s].” he said (5915). . “O All¯h. and Husain.” The definition of “the members of my family. reclining against a pillow . it was Ab¯ Bakr.144 CHAPTER 14. the order of truth it deals with. Muhammad had said: “Let us summon our children and your children. Ab¯ Talib was the cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad. one can get the feel of Isl¯mic scholarship at work. “Should I not show modesty to one whom even the Angels show modesty” (5906). In a mubahala (trial by prayer and curses) with the Christians. and its concerns are mostly with trifles. they are my i. it was complained that he shirked manual work while one ’Amm¯r. in the tradition of many other Muslim Khal¯ ifas. According to another had¯ almost on his deathbed Muhammad told the believers: “I is. is such that it excluded . was a burdened with work that was too heavy. whereupon he said: Open it for him and give him glad tidings of Paradise and lo. am leaving behind you two weighty things: . Here we have in one had¯ the trinity of successive Khal¯ is ifas with the promise of Paradise in store for each. AB¯ TALIB I ’Al¯ b. There were several i i ah¯d¯ to support the claim that the supreme position in Isl¯m rightfully belonged to a is a him and his family by inheritance. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS went to Medina and built their mosque with voluntary labor. . as the is rightful heirs of at least his secular powers.” or “people of the house” (ahlul-bait). Another had¯ tells us whom Muhammad regarded as his family and. [and] the members of a my household.a person came asking for the gate to be opened.

a man of ninety years.” ’Al¯ a i accepted the responsibility and told the Prophet: “I will fight them until they are like us” (5915.” But the “lord and receptacle of victory exclaimed: War is a deception. was i not the Prophet symbolically granting him the future leadership of Isl¯m. ’Al¯ is from me. Now in granting ’Al¯ the banner of victory. a i. 292-293. T ar¯ Tabar¯ vol.” ’Amr asked: “Then what has happened?” ’Al¯ replied: “See.145 the Prophet’s wives but included those for whom zak¯t was forbidden. a Another had¯ also “proves” ’Al¯ claim. II. he took a slave-girl i.. He would not even entertain such an accusation against ’Al¯ i. Then the Prophet told him: “Fight with them until they bear testimony to the fact that there is no god but All¯h and Muhammad is his prophet. complained to Muhammad.” As ’Amr looked to his rear. i himself was not so sure while the Prophet lived. The fact that He and His Messenger loved ’Al¯ made many things a i different for him. took ’Al¯ a i aside and told him: “In three nights you will come under the sway of their rod. go to him and ask him who should inherit the Caliphate. for “ ’Al¯ loves All¯h and His Messenger. 7 a leadership a which ’Umar coveted in his heart? “Never did I cherish for leadership but on that day [the day of Khaibar]. command. and ’Al¯ agreed to meet in single combat. 7 . and All¯h and His Messenger love ’Al¯ (Tirmiz¯ i a a i” i. ’Al¯ ’Aqil. vol. Acts of omission and commission which were punished in others were overlooked in ’Al¯ After a battle fought under his general command. and I am from ’Al¯ (Tirmiz¯ vol. II. people will never give us the Caliphate again. and ’Abb¯s and their offspring (5920). and applied i. Kh¯lid b. 5918). thou hast deceived me.” ’Umar says (5917).” The story is given by Mirkhond. to the exclusion of Bakr and ’Umar. i i” i. At one i point in the contest. 9 After Muhammad’s death. had¯ 1582). On the day of Khaibar. Muhammad said in anger: “Indeed. had¯ 1569). ’Abdu Wudd. involving a complaint of a similar nature. During the Battle of the Ditch.” ’Amr exclaimed: “Boy. ’Al¯ was both brave and cunning. p. pp. his own saliva as a cure. p. therefore. his uncle. vol. ¯ ¯ ikh i. for himself even before the holy one-fifth had been made over to the Apostle’s exchequer.” But ’Al¯ declined. a serious lapse inviting secular as well as divine punishment.” (Tabaq at. The Prophet was furious. i. 521). it appears to me that the Prophet will not survive. for if he says ‘no’ to us now. All¯h is partial. I. Let us. 8 On another occasion. When Muhammad was dying. ’Al¯ ites are sure that he meant to bestow the Caliphate on ’Al¯ but ’Al¯ i. II. ’Amr i b.” Then he called ’Al¯ whose eyes were inflamed.e. ’Abb¯s.” at the complaint. i saying: “I shall never do it. 456. 8 What would you say of the state of justice when the authorities is refuse even to record the first report? In a battle. Muhammad said he is i’s would give the standard to a person who “loves All¯h and His Messenger and All¯h and a a His Messenger love him too. is 9 Rauzat-us-Safa. thy brother i is coming behind thee. “his face becoming red with anger. vol. ’Al¯ “snatched an opportunity to strike i that accursed man. ’Al¯ said to ’Amr: “Have we not agreed that no one should come to i my or to thy aid. part II. Ja’far. I know how the faces of the sons of ’Abdul-Muttalib look when they are on the verge of death. Wal¯ the second-ina id. II.

477-478. had¯ 5933). he was also his executioner. After he was appointed to this responsibility. but after this marriage. AB¯ WAQQAS I Sa’d b. Muhammad saw Zaid’s wife half-uncovered and felt a great attraction for her. Zaid was socially known as the son of Muhammad. Until now. he also beheaded people on the orders of the Apostle (6676). HARIS Zaid b. obey them not” (29:8. and as they [the prisoners] were brought out in squads . and when the night set in. Though the whole matter caused a great scandal. While i Muhammad awarded the punishments. is THE MERITS OF ZAID B. was the old polytheistic morality. This was facilitated by the descent of a revelation from the High Heaven (Qur¯n a 33:36-40). 112). . following the old Arab custom. ’Aisha tells us.” This. “The apostle of God i ordered a trench to be dug in a suitable place. But the most gruesome case was that of the captives of the Ban¯ Quraiza. He was one of those ten men who had been promised Paradise during their own lifetime by Muhammad. “All¯h’s Messenger slept such a sound sleep that I heard the noise of his snoring” (5925). and she neither ate nor drank and said: All¯h has commanded you to treat well your parents and a I am your mother and I command you to do this. by order of his lordship i the apostle . He was i asked to flog people found guilty of drinking (4231) or of fornication (4225). who were all beheaded in a single u day in the market of Medina by ’Al¯ and Zubair (see above p. 10 ¯ SA’D B. the lamp of life of those who yet remained [to be i executed] was extinguished by torchlight. . pp. On that day ’Al¯ and Zubair were till the evening engaged in slaying the i Ban¯ Quraiz. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS ’Al¯ was not only Muhammad’s best general. He worked as a doorman or sentinel for Muhammad during the night. Ab¯ Waqq¯s joined Muhammad when he was only thirteen and accompanied i a him on almost all his campaigns. .. But All¯h now taught a new code and revealed the following verse of the Qura an: “We have enjoined on man kindness to parents: but if they strive to force thee to join ¯ with Me anything of which thou hast no knowledge. We give one example. however. . . a Sa’d was also the impetus for several Qur¯nic verses. eight hundred strong. Haris was the adopted son of Muhammad and participated in most of his expeditions. ’Al¯ and Zubair set about striking off their heads. His mother a took an oath that “she would never talk with him until he abandoned his faith.146 CHAPTER 14.” Mirkhond records in his Persian biography of the Prophet. . he got Zaid to divorce her and married her. he again began to be called by the name of his 10 ibid. ’Al¯ was often chosen to execute them.

147-164). pp. According to Muhammad. I il ate from it. one Asma’bint Alna’man was found leprous and. only four wives of the Prophet are mentioned: Khad¯ ’Aisha. died three years before he [Muhammad] married me. had commanded him to give her the glad tidings of a palace of Jewels in Paradise. This too was dictated by a revelation from All¯h: “Call them by the name a of their fathers. a i youthful beauty had made such an impression on the Prophet that even Gabriel used to come to him in his likeness. THE MERITS OF ’AISHA The chapter on ’Aisha is the longest. I often heard him praise her. had¯ 5956). just as Mary. Muhammad says: “Jibr¯ came to me with a pot. Ibr¯h¯ died. . she was also the first to encourage him in his apostolic mission. At-Tabar¯ mentions twenty-three names besides five more to whom proposals were made but without success. He told her sentimentally: “I saw you in a dream for three nights when an angel brought 11 Muhammad married many women. “The excellence of ’Aisha as compared to women is that of Thar¯ [a dish of very thin bread soaked in a broth of id meat and sometimes vegetables which Muhammad very much relished] over all other food. and food. the marriage was not consummated. The marriage was consummated when she was nine. newly married. ija. Mirkhond gives us an account of eleven wives and four concubines. II. ’Aisha tells us that the Prophet loved three things foremost: women. A daughter of Ab¯ Bakr. a a is THE MERITS OF KHAD¯ IJA In the list of merits. she was betrothed to u Muhammad when she was six years old and he was fifty. i With some women.” (Tabaq at. ’Aisha says: “Never did I feel jealous of any woman as I was jealous of Khad¯ She had ija. Once. ¯ . probably a Quraiza or a Kin¯na. She was turned out. Another woman. therefore. Khad¯ was the best of the women of her ija time.147 natural father. and his Lord . and I was granted the strength of forty men for coition. and Zainab. and the perfumes are the only delights of the world that I care about. was the best of the women of her time (5965). though senior to ija him in age by fifteen years. ’Aisha told Muhammad: “Why do you remember one of those old women of the Quraish with gums red and who is so long dead-while All¯h has a given you a better one in her stead?” (5976). Shanba’ hint ’Umar alghafaria. Muhammad had a very soft spot for her. Salama. 11 Khad¯ was Muhammad’s first employer and. and whenever he slaughtered a sheep he presented its meat to her female companions” (5971). Muhammad himself says that “women. This is more equitable with All¯h” (Qur¯n 33:5.” Another tradition makes him prefer women to everything else.” Muhammad said (5966). perfumes. For example. . his first wife. vol. developed doubts about the apostleship of Muhammad when his a infant son. dispatched home. Muhammad also married a sister of Dihy¯ Kalb¯ whose a im. the daughter of Imran. in a fit of jealousy.

” About Muhammad’s own behavior. though a strict code might call this bribery. someone “who was somewhat equal in rank with me in the eyes of All¯h’s Messenger. she was yet a woman and “thus could not be absolutely free from envy. for then “you would see what you do not generally see and I would see what I do not generally see. verily.” a as ’Aisha puts it. but when she saw Hafsa and the Prophet together she fell into a tantrum (5991). but all very convenient. But. and having been thus silenced. by the Lord of Ibr¯h¯ ” (5979). A rule within a rule. The other wives of Muhammad sent Fat¯ ima. Muhammad received her “in the same very state when Fat¯ ima entered. he used to cast lots amongst his wives” to determine which of them would accompany him. he told her: “I can well discern when you are pleased with me and when you are annoyed with me . ’Aisha reports that “when All¯h’s Messenger set out on a a journey. as luck would have it. Muhammad was thinking of ’Aisha. Muhammad saw her when “he was lying with me in my mantle. by the Lord of Muhammad. Thereupon All¯h’s Messenger smiled and said: She is the daughter of a Ab¯ Bakr” (5984).” ’Aisha generously agreed. “Where I would be . Fat¯ ima told Muhammad: “Allah’s Messenger. she went back. I will never talk a to him about this matter. . in the words of ’Aisha. . to him. When people want to please an official or any person in authority. ’Aisha also narrates what modern newsmen would call a human-interest story.’ and when you are annoyed with me. “When it was night All¯h’s Messenger used to travel on camel with ’Aisha.” ’Aisha narrates.” But Hafsa asked a ’Aisha if she would agree to change seats with her. She said yes.” Then they chose Zainab to represent them. he says that “in journey it is not compulsory to observe perfect equity amongst women in all respects” (note 2734). Even during his last illness. The translator explains that though ’Aisha’s position was eminent and exalted. Then I exchanged hot words until a I made her quiet. Hafsa and ’Aisha were selected. . Once. u Another had¯ throws some more light on Muhammad’s conjugal life and also on the is life of the women around him. they try to please his son or his wife or even his butler.” “O daughter.148 CHAPTER 14. don’t you love whom I love?” u a Muhammad replied with a counterquestion. A time-honored a practice. Zainab went on until I came to know that ¯ All¯h’s Messenger would not disapprove if I retorted. When you are pleased with me you say: ‘No.” Muhammad made no answer. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS you to me in a silk cloth and he said: Here is your wife” (5977). “she u a [Zainab] then came to me and showed harshness to me and I was seeing the eyes of All ah’s Messenger whether he would permit me. “People sent their gifts when it was the is turn of ’Aisha seeking thereby the pleasure of All¯h’s Messenger” (5983). a im’ According to a had¯ on ’Aisha’s own authority. Zainab too was a favorite wife of Muhammad.” She too told him that the other wives had sent her to seek ”equity in the case of the daughter of Ab¯ Quh¯fa. his daughter. you say: ‘No. your wives have sent me to you in order to ask you to observe ¯ equity in case of the daughter of Ab¯ Quh¯fa. On another occasion. The wives wanted her to go again but she said: “By All¯h.

pp. thinking that the turn of ’Aisha was not near. I would not allow them. 678-679. and even. until he was overpowered in the house of Maim¯na. ¯ ¯ 12 . In fact. but certainly she enjoyed her role as the Prophet’s favorite wife. and in my bosom. THE MERITS OF FAT¯ IMA Fat¯ ima was Muhammad’s daughter by his first wife.” ’Aisha tells us (5985).” ’Aisha adds. He Just before Muhammad died. ’Al¯ sent a is ima i a proposal of marriage to the daughter of the late Ab¯ Jahl. He cleansed his teeth and then he died. known as the Saiyids. on my day.149 tomorrow. chewed it to make it soft and gave it to the Prophet. There is an interesting story narrated by Ibn Ish¯q. i.” The Apostle smiled and then his pain overcame him as he was going the round of his wives. Muhammad put his foot down on the proposal and declared from the pulpit: “I would not allow them. Muhammad looked at it intently. vol. p. his cousin. “The Prophet died in my room. meaning “masters. ’Aisha knew her Prophet a little too well. Muhammad himself called her al-bat¯l. here is Gabriel offering you greetings. Muhammad found a ’Aisha crying with headache. “the virgin.” She replied: “Let there be peace and blessing of All¯h upon him. complained about it to Muhammad. took the twig from her brother’s hand. Fat¯ u u ima. ’Aisha’s brother came in the room holding a green twig in his hand. if. She had two surviving sons. All¯h called him to his heavenly home and his head a was between my neck and chest. During his last illness. I. our salivas mingled. 12 Once Muhammad told her: “ ’Aisha. Hasan and Husain. After Mecca was conquered. 13 And there Muhammad died in her bosom.” and added: “He sees what I do not a see” (5997).” u The ah¯d¯ on Fat¯ tell us an interesting story. for my daughter is part of me. “And when it was my turn. the only alternative is that ’Al¯ should i divorce my daughter [and then marry their daughter]. where I would be tomorrow?” he inquired. is ¯ 13 ¯ S irat Ras ul All ah. an adversary of Muhammad u and important chief of the Ban¯ Makhz¯m. He then “called his wives and asked their permission to be nursed in u my house. ’Aisha took the hint. and they agreed. the translator assures us that Fat¯ ima “is undoubtedly the chief of the ladies of Paradise and her two sons Im¯m Hasan and Husain a are the chiefs of the young people of Paradise” (note 2751).” Stating the position of Muslim theology. Khad¯ She was married to ’Al¯ ija. Muhammad said to her: “Would it distress you if you were to die before me so that I might wrap you in your shroud and pray over you and bury you?” ’Aisha replied: “Methink I see you if you had done that returning to my house and spending a bridal night therein with one of your wives. 282). in the last moment of his death. his wife. One may wonder whether she always believed in Muhammad’s angels. put it in her mouth. Tabaq at.” says ’Aisha counting these things as “gifts and blessings from All ah” (Sahih Bukh¯r¯ ¯ a i Shar¯ had¯ 1650. from whom are descended the posterity of Muhammad. just a few days before his death.

Mu’az.” 14 Sa’d was a chief of the Ban¯ Aus. Most Muslim traditionalists take this literally. and subsequently he took part in all the campaigns led by Muhammad.a number unknown in pre-Muslim Arabia. THE MERITS OF ZUBAIR AND TALHA Zubair embraced Isl¯m when he was fifteen or sixteen. Therefore. ¯ There are other traditions about him. sitting on a camel. MU’AZ When Sa’d b. one Marw¯n b. ¯ ¯ . her husband could not marry another woman in spite of the custom of polygamy. THE MERITS OF SA’D B. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS who disturbs her disturbs me and he who offends her offends me” (5999). he later became the richest u person in Arabia. It was only after her death that Muhammad started on his practice of polygamy. but some regard it as a metaphor denoting All ah’s joy at receiving a beloved friend in His heavenly home. even though she was very much older than Muhammad. some of them recorded by Ibn Ish¯q. So it seems that if the father of a woman had sufficiently strong influence. Zubair fought against ’Al¯ with the help of ’Aisha and was killed at the age of sixty-four by one of the partisans i of ’Al¯ i. 469. who u 14 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. During the Battle of Uhud. Hakam in revenge. but his bier was very light to carry. Thanks to his political connections. p. Sa’d was a a fat man. On the same occasion he also said: “Every wailing woman lies except the one who wept Sa’d b. Slavery in earnest and on such a large scale began with the advent of Isl¯m. she had the influence in her own right and as an employer held all the strings in her hands. led rebel forces against ’Al¯ Talha was murdered by i). Mu’az died as a result of wounds received at the Battle of Badr. for it was alleged that he had a hand in the murder of a ’Usm¯n. He was Muhammad’s cousin a and Ab¯ Bakr’s son-in-law. In the case of Khad¯ ija. In the battle over the succession that raged later on. Talha saved the life of Muhammad. she was his only wife while she lived.150 CHAPTER 14. the third Khal¯ a ifa. Muhammad said that unseen angels were giving him their shoulder. He was the proud owner of a thousand slaves . On the day of the Battle of the Camel (in which ’Aisha. a About Zubair Muhammad said: “For every prophet there is a helper and my helper is Zubair” (5938). Muhammad said that “the Throne of the most Gracious shook at his death” (6033-6035).

but what does this “conversion a to Isl¯m” mean? Did he become a better man? Did he became more forgiving. a ’Abdul-Rahm¯n. this is all the notice Bil¯l receives in the “Book of a the Companions” (in fact it is the shortest notice in the whole book). ’Abdul-Rahm¯n “was a i. . he asked him to narrate the act by which he hoped to receive such a good reward.151 embraced Isl¯m at Medina after the first pledge at Al-’Aqaba. 301. “By God. an important Companion. On the day of the Battle of Badr. he was ransomed by Ab¯ Bakr and then converted u to Isl¯m. 15 a The conspiracy to murder Ka’b ibn Ashraf. Khalaf and his son. a carrying coats of mail” which. the Aus. We would have skipped over him altogether but for the fact that he exemplifies a certain moral. tells us a story which is narrated by Ibn a Ish¯q and repeated by Tabar¯ On the day of the Battle of Badr. Mu’az. the poet. according to a tradition quoted by Ibn Ish¯q. Seen through less-believing a eyes. he “had looted. who belonged to the routed army of the Quraish. for I am more valuable than the coats of mail which you 15 ibid.” Just at that time he encountered his old friend Umayya b.” Muhammad said to him. “O ’Abdul-Rahm¯n. in Mecca. Consistent with his lowly position. less of a persecutor in his own turn? The brief references we have to him in the annals of early Isl¯m hardly give us that impression. he was guarding Muhammad’s hut along with some other ans¯rs. p.” he replied. Bil¯l a replied that he had done nothing so deserving except that “I perform complete ablution during the night or day I observe prayer with that purification what All¯h ordained for me a to pray” (6015). a We are glad that Bil¯l escaped his alleged persecution. was worked out in consultation with Sa’d b. he was treacherous and a fanatical sadist. he said.” he added. saw that he might have a chance of saving his life if he fell into the hands of ’Abdul-Rahm¯n as a prisoner. He was an Abyssinian slave who was persecuted by his master. u B¯ AL IL ¯ One night Muhammad heard the sound of Bil¯l’s steps before him in Paradise. the erstwhile allies of his own tribe. Umayya. Since the Arab custom allowed manumission. He watched with displeasure a as the Muslim soldiers laid their hands on the prisoners.” he said. He also played a prominent part in causing the slaughter of eight hundred men of the Ban¯ Quraiza. “Yes. “You seem to dislike what the people are doing.. Umayya b. a state which would give him protection and from which a he could be redeemed by paying an appropriate ransom. a “won’t you take me a prisoner. Khalaf. it is the first defeat that God brought on the infidel and I would rather see them slaughtered than left alive. The next a day. more kind a and compassionate.

611-612). a strong opponent of Isl¯m. Muhammad ordered Bil¯l to bring to him Saf¯ a iyya. Khalaf! May I not live if he lives. and the Muslims “hewed them to a pieces with their swords until they were dead. Bil¯l explained that he did it on purpose. They bring no change in the individual. S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. Bil¯l kept shouting. I shall slay two of His foes” (Mirkhond. after the great carnage of the day. now his prisoners. by their hands. But organized conversions are now. 18 In fact.” Then he threw away the coats of a mail and took his friend and his friend’s son. Bil¯l brought her and her a cousin across the battlefield. 18 Most conversions are of this kind. the son of Ab¯ Jahl. Just then. pp. often they make him worse. pp. He promised Muhammad: u a “I swear by God that for every dirham I spent during the time of ignorance to obstruct the religion of God the Most High. ’Abdul-Rahm¯n used to say. 302-303.” In later days. He [All¯h’s Apostle] said: Who would take it in order to fulfil its rights? Then the people a withdrew their hands. and brother had just been murdered. part of an aggressive politics.” ’Abdul-Rahm¯n in turn replied. Life of Mahomet. father. a “God have mercy on Bil¯l. Kharasha Ab¯ Duj¯na said: I am here to take it and fulfil a u a its rights.” The Muslims gathered.” 16 a There is another instance of the same kind denoting a sadistic pleasure in cruelty for its own sake. I shall disburse two for the promotion thereof. Muir. whose husband. Sim¯k b. II. When Mecca was conquered. and that for every one of the friends of God the Most High whom I have murdered during the time of my infidelity. as they have always been. At the Battle of Khaibar. Umayya a b. ¯ ¯ W. There is a telling example. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS have. “By God. vol. p. the young wife of the chief of the vanquished tribe. In vain did ’Abdul-Rahm¯n a claim immunity for his prisoners. They cried in pain and horror. Muhammad found nothing exceptionable in this. He took it and struck the heads of the polytheists” (6040). decided to become a Muslim. Bil¯l saw his old persecutor and began to shout: “The arch-infidel. vol. ’Akrama. I will. he “wished to a see their grief and anger stirred up.152 CHAPTER 14. which was littered with the corpses of their kith and kin.” 17 Most conversions carried out by the soldiers and priests of proselytizing religions are of this nature. IV. 16 17 . I lost my coats of mail and he deprived me of my prisoners. ¯ THE MERITS OF ABU DUJANA Anas reports: “All¯h’s Messenger took hold of his sword on the Day of Uhud and said: a Who would take it from me? Everyone present stretched his hand saying: I would do it. 68.

” With that end in view. give a reply on behalf of the Messenger of All a ah. One of them was the son of ’Umar. ’Aisha gives us a fuller version of the story. . I shall tear them with my tongue as the leather is torn. Hass¯n then went to Muhammad a . the daughter of Bakr. whereas the immia grants remained busy with transactions in the bazaar . The general even led the funeral prayer for ’Abdullah a b. . he petitioned: “O All¯h. But there was a difficulty: how could it be u a done successfully without involving the Prophet. According to her.” He then declared his intention to satirize Ab¯ Sufy¯n. u a which he knew very well. Muhammad had said: “Satirise against the Quraish. Muhammad said to him: “Write satire against the unbelievers. . and Huraira. to whom we owe a disproportionately large number of traditions. . and commissioned them to write satires. Ibn Raw¯ha and Ka’b a b. He explains: “You are under the impression that Ab¯ Huraira transmits so many ah¯d¯ from All¯h’s u a is a Messenger . Gabriel is with you” (6074). the a Prophet next sent for Hass¯n b. for Muhammad and Ab¯ Sufy¯n shared u a the same lineage? Ab¯ Bakr was appointed to help Hass¯n with the lineage of the Quraish. for the satire is more grievous to them than the hurt from an arrow. the other was the son of Zubair by Asma. M¯lik.” And to All¯h Himself. I never forgot anything that I heard from him [Muhammad]” (6083). ’Umar after contriving to murder him. Muhammad told him: “Hass¯n.153 THE TWO ’ABDULLAHS The names of two ’Abdullahs also appear on the merit list. . . He died when he was seventy-two after having been a Khal¯ of a sort for nine years. Huraira in his own lifetime was known as “Huraira the Liar”. SABIT An interesting person on the merit list is Hass¯n b. I was a poor man and I served All¯h’s Messenger . . “Permit me to write satire u a against Ab¯ Sufy¯n. Sabit. . Both were killed by the Umayyad general Hajj¯j. .” he said to Muhammad. ¯ THE MERITS OF HASSAN B. . Muhammad’s servant and bodyguard for ten years. . who told him: “Now you have called for this lion a who strikes the enemies with his tail . Understanding the intricacies. Muhammad sent for two poets. a poet whom Muhammed a a employed for replying to the lampoons against him by unbeliever poets. S¯bit. ifa THE MERITS OF ANAS AND HURAIRA On the list of merits also appear the names of Anas. The body of ’Abdullah ibn Zubair was found hanging outside Medina on the road to Mecca (6176). help him with R¯h-ul-Qudus [the holy ¯ a a u spirit]” (6073). Unsatisfied with their compositions. On another occasion.

154 CHAPTER 14. 220). and my Companions are a source of security for the Ummah” (6147).” she said a a (6075). then those nearest to them” (6150). but when they were in his service. MUHAMMAD AT THE CENTER Muhammad is at the center of everything. ’Aisha was the first to excuse Hass¯n. At the end of the book. He tells his followers: “I am a source of safety and security to my Companions . According to one important opinion. . a u Muslim divines have not been idle. I shall draw out from them your name as hair is drawn out from the flour. 170). .e. as the last Companion died in A. who was not altogether cut when he later took an a active part in the scandal against ’Aisha. 6081). then come the successors of the Companions (t¯bi’¯n). do not revile my Companions” (6167). the second period extends till the life of the successors of the Companions (UP to A. “The best of my Ummah would be those of the generation nearest to mine. though all the participants were flogged. Muhammad was opposed to poets and poetry. H. the first period is coextensive with the life of the Companions (i. and they have worked out the exact period of each era. Muhammad was grateful to Hass¯n. Then those nearest to them. the Prophet warns the coming generations of Muslims: “Do not revile my Companions. In this ranking and ordering. H. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS and assured him: “By Him Who has sent you with Truth.” Hass¯n gave Muhammad complete satisfaction. but as they proceed further away from him. they become better. H. the Prophet comes first. 120 years. “Leave him for he defended All¯h’s Messenger. As things converge toward Muhammad.. . and the third is coextensive with the life of those who followed the successors (till A. 110). “I heard All¯h’s Messenger saying: a a Hass¯n satirised against them and gave satisfaction to the Muslims and disquieted the a non-Muslims. they decline in status as well as in quality and authenticity.” says ’Aisha (6079. it was a different matter. then come his Companions.

. He neither oppresses him nor humiliates him nor looks down upon him . of course. “It is not lawful for a Muslim that he should keep his relations estranged with his brother beyond three days” (6205). . all Muslims should help each other. and the Joining of the Ties of Relationship”. and then every servant of All¯h is granted pardon who a does not associate anything with All¯h except the person in whose heart there is rancour a against his brother” (6222). “A believer is like a brick for another believer. even to the extent of stepping on a thorn. Remembrance of God The thirtieth book is on “Virtue. This idea runs through many ah¯d¯ (6233-6245) a is Believers should not nurse mutual rancor. “The believers are like one person. the one supporting the other” (6257). he must not feel enmity toward a fellow Muslim. A Muslim should visit his sick brother. “When a Muslim falls ill. “When a Muslim visits his brother in Islam he is supposed to remain in the fruit garden of Paradise until he returns” (6229). “All¯h elevates him in rank or effaces his sins because a of that” (6238). In short. “A Muslim is the brother of a Muslim. All Muslims are one body.Chapter 15 Virtue. All things of a Muslim are inviolable for his brother in faith: his blood. it is a reward. his compensation is that his minor sins are obliterated” (6235). stand by each other. and feel for each other. . And. Destiny. the sickness of a Muslim is no sickness. his wealth and his honour” (6219). Monday and Thursday. Good Manners. Many of the principles enunciated in this book are good except that they have a sectarian orientation. the whole 155 . if his head aches. Knowledge. “The gates of Paradise are not opened but on two days. While the Muslim has a permanent quarrel with polytheists. If he suffers pain.

the following could be considered an a eloquent rendering of the law of retribution: “The claimants would get their claims on the Day of Resurrection so much so that the hornless sheep would get its claim from the horned sheep” (6252). for bringing reconciliation amongst persons and the narration of the words of the husband to his wife. 6265. and 6306). All¯h would relieve him from a hardships to which he would be put on the Day of Resurrection. KNOWLEDGE. and holy war was allowed by a some believers toward the nonbelievers too. Therefore a Muslim should not oppress another Muslim and. spoils. 1 . he should take care of their “pointed heads so that these might not do any harm to a Muslim” (6332). who a This is the nearest we have from Muhammad to Jesus’ teaching: “Whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek. for “truth leads one to Paradise” (6307). It is meritorious to speak the truth. turn to him the other also” (Matthew 5:39). should help him. in fact. All¯h would conceal his follies on the Day of Resurrection” (6250). REMEMBRANCE OF GOD body aches with fever and sleeplessness” (6260). and he who meets the need of a brother. NONVIOLENCE Nonviolence of a sort is also preached. OTHER VIRTUES Charity and forgiveness are recommended (6264). and the narration of the words of a wife to her husband” (6303). a SUBJECT PEOPLE Such benevolence as is compatible with jizy¯. But lying is permissible in three cases: “In battle. RETRIBUTION If we could forget All¯h’s partiality for Muslims. He should neither commit oppression upon him nor ruin him.156 CHAPTER 15. he should spare his face” (6325). All¯h would a meet his needs. if a man goes to a bazaar or a mosque with arrows. a Similarly. and he who did not expose the follies of a Muslim. as the Prophet himself explains. DESTINY. “When any one of you fights with his brother. “All¯h created Adam in His own image” (2872). VIRTUE. Abuse and backbiting and talecarrying are censured (6263. “A Muslim is the brother of a fellow-Muslim. and he who relieves a Muslim from hardship. 1 The face should be avoided because. When Hish¯m saw “the farmers of Syria.

157 had been made to stand in the sun . . . [and] detained for jizy¯”, he was reminded of the a Prophet’s words: “All¯h would torment those who torment people in the world” (6328). a Obviously, Hish¯m extended the definition of “people” to include men other than Muslims. a

Muhammad was somewhat more indulgent toward his own lapses. If he ill-treated his followers, that brought him no blame, secular or divine, and, in fact, turned into a blessing for the sufferers. “ O All¯h, I make a covenant with Thee against which Thou wouldst a never go. I am a human being and thus for a Muslim whom I give any harm or whom I scold or upon whom I invoke curse or whom I beat, make this a source of blessing, purification and nearness to Thee on the Day of Resurrection” (6290). One would think that to err is human, not apostolic; at least, not in such grave matters.

The subject of virtue is also discussed in the fortieth book, pertaining to Piety and Softening of Hearts (al-zuhd wa al-raq¯iq). a Here are mentioned certain acts which are considered pious and meritorious. Widows, orphans, and the poor should be treated benevolently (7107-7108). Charity should be given to the poor and the wayfarer (7112-7113). The merit of building mosques is stressed. “He who builds a mosque for All¯h, All¯h would build for him a house in Paradise” (7110). a a Any ostentatious display of one’s deeds is deplored. “If anyone makes a hypocritical display, All¯h will make a display of him” (7115). Therefore, one should not publicize one’s a lapses and omissions. “All the people of my Ummah would get pardon for their sins except those who publicize them” (7124). The great theological sin of polytheism does not go unmentioned. All¯h the Most High a and Exalted states: “I am the One, One who does not stand in need of a partner. If anyone does anything in which he associates anyone else with Me, I shall abandon him with one with whom he associates All¯h” (7114). This is the first time that All¯h lets a man off so a a lightly and does not seize him and roast him in hellfire for the great sin of polytheism. Muhammad also disapproved of sneezing and yawning. “The yawning is from the devil,” he said (7129).


Several ah¯d¯ at the very beginning of the book show the “vanity of worldly possesa is sions”, and how worldly wealth perishes and only good deeds remain. Muhammad sent Ab¯ Ubaida to collect jizy¯ from the tribes of Bahrain. As soon as the u a news of his return came, the ans¯rs gathered round Muhammad. Muhammad smiled and a said: “I think you have heard about the arrival of Ab¯ Ubaida with goods from Bahrain.” u They said: “Yes.” Muhammad now did some thinking out loud and said that the new riches might corrupt them. “By All¯h, it is not the poverty about which I fear in regard a to you but I am afraid in your case that the worldly riches may be given to you as were given to those who had gone before you and you begin to vie with one another for them as they vied for them, and these may destroy you as these destroyed them” (7065). This sentiment was duplicated by ’Umar while distributing the ‘holy one-fifth’ amongst the Medinans, part of a booty valued at thirty million dirhams (besides many maidens and a vast number of fine Persian horses, nine falling to the lot of every combatant) won at the Battle of Jalola under the generalship of Sa’d, from an outlying province of Persia. The sentiment sounded pious and it still does. It has come down the corridor of history ‘proving’ the great ‘piety’ of ’Umar. But the basic question about the whole business of holy war, burning, pillage, booty, jizy¯, and how these can become legitimate and moral a has really never bothered Muslim theologians and scholars or even the Sufis. They can strain at a gnat but are ready to swallow a camel. Several ah¯d¯ show that the holy war against the infidels was not only a pious act a is but a profitable business. Utba b. Ghazw¯n tells us: “I was the seventh amongst seven 2 a who had been with All¯h’s Messenger and we had nothing to eat but the leaves of the tree a . . . We found a sheet which we tore in two and divided between myself and Sa’d b. Malik. I made the lower garment with half of it and so did Sa’d . . . and today there is none amongst us who has not become the governor of a city” (7075).

The phrase seventh amongst seven refers to a party of seven men sent by Muhammad under the leadership of ’Abdullah ibn Jahsh to waylay a caravan of the Quraish during the second year of his stay in Medina. In order to disarm the apprehensions of the men in charge of the caravan, one of the raiders shaved his head so that they would be taken for pilgrims. When the caravan-men were off guard and cooking their food, the raiders rushed upon them, killing one man, taking two prisoners, and securing spoils. This killing took place during the sacred month of the Arabs when, according to their tradition, no blood could be spilled. That was, however, only the old polytheistic morality. But Utba was hardly the seventh of the seven, though he was one of the raiding party, for when the action was taking place, he had fallen behind to search for his camel, which he later said had wandered away.



The Prophet’s moral teaching is dominated by theology. For example, the “Book of Virtue and Good Manners” opens with ah¯d¯ which enjoin the believers to accord benevoa is lent treatment to their parents and to obey them. Who among the people is most deserving of good treatment? “Your mother, again your mother, again your mother, then your father, then your nearest relatives according to the order of nearness,” replies Muhammad (6181). But if morality conflicts with Muslim theology, the latter prevails. We have already seen how All¯h Himself ordered Sa’d b. Ab¯ Waqq¯s not to obey his parents if they stood a i a for polytheism (Qur¯n 29:8, 31:15). a Not merely to disobey them, but if necessary to oppose them in more active ways. The son of ’Abdullah ibn Ubayy, an ans¯r, tells Muhammad: “If you really want him [his a father] killed, command me to do it and I will bring you his head . . . [but] if you order another to kill him, I shall not afterwards be able to bear the sight of his murderer . . . I shall kill him - and then I shall have killed one of the faithful for an infidel, and I shall go to hell.” What a combination of piety and filial duty! 3 Similarly, there are several traditions which boast how Ab¯ Hozayfa, an Emigrant, u helped Hamza to kill his own father by giving him a cut with his sword at the Battle of Badr. Muhammad is praised in Islamic lore for “joining of the ties of relationship”. But the fact is that the believers were encouraged to rebel against these very ties in order to disorient them altogether from the old life and to strengthen their exclusive loyalty to the new leader and the new ummah. For the assassination of a poetess of Medina, Asma hint Marw¯n, one ’Umayr ibn ’Adi, a man of her own clan, was chosen. That helped him a to prove his zeal and loyalty to the cause of Islam. After driving his sword through the sleeping woman with one of her children still at her breast, he came to Muhammad to inform him. “You have done a service to All¯h and His Messenger,” the Prophet told him a gratefully.

For the same theological reason, Muhammad was ready to consign his father, his noblehearted uncle Ab¯ T¯lib, and even his mother to the flames of hellfire. u a In this respect, the polytheists, who were not theological, were better than the Muslims.
The story is given in Ibn Ish¯q and repeated in Tabar¯ The version here is from S¯ a i. irat Ras ul All ah, ¯ ¯ pp. 491-492.

160 CHAPTER 15. VIRTUE, DESTINY, KNOWLEDGE, REMEMBRANCE OF GOD After the conquest of Mecca, when Muhammad became supreme in Arabia, and the smaller tribes had to pay homage to his power and prophethood, two brothers, chiefs of a tribe inhabiting Yemen, came to Muhammad and showed their willingness to embrace Islam. They were converted. They hated to eat the heart of an animal but were made to do so in order to prove that their break with their old polytheism was genuine. Later on, during a conversation with Muhammad, their late mother came in for a mention, and Muhammad told them that she was in hell. Both turned away from him in anger. “Come back, my own mother too is there with yours,” Muhammad cried in an unsuccessful effort to entice them back. As they departed the two brothers said: “This man has not only made us eat the heart of the animals, but said that our mother is in hell: who would follow him?” 4

Another feature of the Prophet’s teaching on morals, inevitably flowing from its predominantly theological nature, is its lack of universality. Faith, equity, justice are only for the Muslims in their mutual relationships. To the infidels and unbelievers another code, another set of rules, is applied. 5 The lives of their males are forfeit; their women are legitimate objects of concubinage and bondage; their children are meant for slavery; and their wealth and property for pillage and booty. A sectarian attitude informs all matters large or small. When two Muslims meet, they are to greet each other. “The better of the two is one who is the first to give a greeting” (6210). But Muhammad advises his followers not to greet Jews and Christians first (5389). Similarly, if you meet a Muslim on the road, you are to be courteous and step aside to give him the way (5376), but if you meet a Jew or a Christian, you are to push him aside (5389). When a Muslim dies, fellow Muslims should “follow his bier”. in fact, this is one of the five or six “rights of a Muslim over another Muslim” (5379). And in the same vein, a Muslim should offer a prayer of mercy for a fellow Muslim. But All¯h forbids this courtesy a toward non-Muslims (Qur¯n 9:84). It is another matter that some Muslims do not live a up to the Prophet’s teachings. But Muhammad himself was very particular about keeping away from the funerals of non-Muslims. According to Muslim tradition, one Mukhayr¯ a iq, learned Jewish priest, recognized Muhammad as the promised prophet and even bestowed seven gardens on him (according to some traditions, they were part of the war booty seized from the Jews of Medina). He also fought alongside Muhammad on the day of Uhud, though it was a Sabbath, and died in the battle. But though his corpse was allowed to be buried near the Muslims, Muhammad did not attend his funeral or pray for him.
Tabaq at, vol. II, p. 100; also W. Muir, Life of Mahomet, vol. IV, pp. 228-229. ¯ The Qur an frankly teaches this discriminatory ethic. “Muhammad is All ah’s apostle. Those who follow ¯ ¯ him are ruthless to the unbelievers but merciful to one another,” it says (48:29).
5 4

after which it becomes a lump of flesh and forty days later All¯h sends His angel to it with a instructions concerning four things . his deeds. it gives the theology of a Moloch .” But Muhammad failed to benefit from this source.” As a result. Muhammad customarily visited his wives in rotation. leading to a reluctant and even rebellious conformity. and prurience. false witness. Muhammad could not have heard of Indian Yoga. as Muhammad called him. his livelihood. and tribute. as might be expected. “Evil one is he who is evil in his mother’s womb” (6393). murders. but thou. It does not seem to know that man’s acts emanate from his thoughts and desires. Even piety is no substitute for purity and for inner self-understanding and inner self-culture and aspiration. it gives an ethics of jih¯d. “The constituents of one of you are collected for forty days in his mother’s womb in the form of blood. are the master over that of which I have no power [love for each]. his fortune and misfortune. the “Book of Destiny” (Qadr). vol. blasphemies. which in turn are rooted in the separative ego and in nescience. True. violence.161 Mukhayr¯ was “the best of the Jews”. garbing itself in pious clothing. O Lord. a DESTINY The thirty-first book. Jesus had preached that “out of the heart proceed evil thoughts. there can be no higher ethical life. Without inner purification. Muhammad believes that everything is predetermined. he found it burdensome to observe this practice. theft. but this idea was not entirely unknown to Semitic traditions which he knew and in some ways had made his own. An unpurified heart merely rationalizes man’s lusts. For example. Each person passes through a series of stages. The fact is that he founded a very outward religion. II. . contains only fifty-one ah¯d¯ a is (6390-6441).All¯h demanding the blood of the a infidels. 280. But. though the Buddhist influence had been penetrating the Middle East for many centuries. LACK OF INWARDNESS Muhammad’s moral teaching also lacks inwardness.” he said. war booty. “This I have power to do. 6 So All¯h had to intervene with more accommodating revelations. his death. it imposes only an outer code. . it may even happen that a very good man who deserves Paradise and is only a cubit away from Paradise will suddenly be overcome by what destiny has 6 Tabaq at. fornications. a The lack of a philosophy and praxis of inner culture fails to bring about any real sublimation. but he was still not iq entitled to a Muslim funeral prayer. ¯ . adulteries. p.

of course. those “who are sound in knowledge say: We affirm our faith in everything which is from our Lord” (6442). but they [His creatures] would be questioned” (6406). by seeking to explain them.” and do not dispute about it . DESTINY. He also warns against hair-splitting. then “would it not be an injustice to punish them?” Muhammad replies: “Everything is created by All¯h and lies in His power. He would not be questioned as to a what He does. VIRTUE. “Recite the Qur¯n.162 CHAPTER 15. why not depend upon our destiny?” Muhammad replied: “No.” They logically asked: “Why then should we perform good deeds.” he remonstrates with the believers. But in spite of these warnings. KNOWLEDGE The thirty-second book. he says” (6450). “Ruined are those who indulged in hair-splitting. Those who “have a yearning for error go after the allegorical verses seeking to cause dissension. KNOWLEDGE. “You would tread the same path as was trodden by those before you inch by inch and step by step so much so that if they had entered into the hole of the lizard. the peoples before you were ruined because of their disputation in the Book. the Prophet warns the believers” (6443). This brings in the usual riddle: how to reconcile destiny with freedom of action. The Prophet assures us that “All¯h has fixed the very portion of adultery which a man a will indulge in” (6421). a a “Verily. Here is another theological riddle and another answer. The book also includes a flattering reference to scholars. It means the knowledge that we find in the Qur¯n. you would follow them in this also. for everyone is facilitated in that for which he is created” (6400). Muhammad also warns against people who believe that certain portions of the Qur¯n a are mere allegories and try to read their own meanings into them. If everything of men is decreed in advance. Muhammad told his followers that “there is not one amongst you who has not been allotted his seat in Paradise or Hell. do perform good deeds. “Verily. And. REMEMBRANCE OF GOD written and begin to act like a denizen of hell.” On the other hand. the reverse may also happen (6390). All¯h does not take a away knowledge by snatching it from the people but he takes away the knowledge by taking . is the “Book of Knowledge” (Ilm).that is knowledge. The word ‘knowledge’ here has a special connotation. One day. Muhammad is still apprehensive about his followers and feels that they will take to the path of the Jews and the Christians. even smaller than the previous one.

slaves. In the prophetic tradition. infidel. in wisdom. and Paradise if we fall. the infidels. in brotherliness. and so on. Muhammad’s All¯h is a tribal god trying to be universal through jiha ad. like his moral teaching. “walking toward Me” means walking in truth. Muhammad’s god. whom they give all kinds of names: heathen. All¯h tells us that if a believer “draws near Me by the span of a palm. conquest. the phrase means walking in enmity toward the polytheists. Our own role a is compliance and conformity and obedience to a revelation which is not ours. ¯ RECITING ALLAH’S NAME BEFORE GOING TO SLEEP ’Al¯ tells us that F¯tima. There is no God but all¯h and Muhammad is the ¯ a prophet of this godling is the true import of the Muhammadan kalimah (creed).” So F¯tima came to the Holy Prophet in the expectation a . Why ninety-nine? “God is odd [witr] and He loves odd numbers. “There are ninety-nine a names of All¯h. and earnestness. Though Muhammad rebelled against a the idea that All¯h had visible forms. our reward is booty. his wife and the Prophet’s daughter. a a The believers are exhorted to remember All¯h. where it has a meaning very different from the one given to it in certain prophetic traditions. The statement is taken from the mystic lore. and empire if we succeed. in compassion. And if he walks towards Me. Muhammad explains” (6476). and forced conversions.” They heard that “there had fallen to the lot of All¯h’s a Apostle some prisoners of war. in conciliation. Some theologians ‘exalt’ God but denigrate man. We should be wary of such theologians and their theologies. In this holy war which we are asked to wage with zeal. ¯ REMEMBRANCE OF ALLAH The thirty-third book is on “Remembrance of All¯h” (Kit¯b al-Zikr). he retained His audible names. in purity.” Muhammad a tells us (6475). he who commits them to memory would get into Paradise. it means walking toward the Light within. polytheist. they are tearful about God but are quite dry-eyed and even cruel-hearted toward their fellow mortals. I draw near him a by the cubit. in conformity to the commands conveyed by All¯h through revelation to some favored fellow. “had a corn in her hand i a because of working at the hand-mill. is sectarian and lacks both universality and true inwardness. In the mystic tradition.163 away the scholars” (6462). faith. I rush towards him” (6471).

he gave ’Al¯ a captured girl named Rayta. 593. ¯ ¯ . you should recite Takb¯ [All¯h-o-Akbar] thirty-four times and Tasb¯ ir a ih [Subh¯n All¯h] thirty-three times and Tahm¯ [al-Hamdu li-All¯h] thirty-three times and a a id a that is better than the servant for you” (6577). the daughter of Hil¯l. and the second to ’Umar. All¯h’s name did not always suffice as a substitute for a servant. The Prophet was a in the habit of giving prisoners of war to his favorite believers as slaves and concubines. VIRTUE. the tribe of Muhammad’s u foster mother. 7 ¯ SUPPLICATE ALLAH AND FLEE FROM SATAN IN THE MORNING We may quote one more had¯ which is apropos: “When you listen to the crowing of is the cock. ask All¯h for His favour as it sees Angels and when you listen to the braying of a the donkey. seek refuge in All¯h from the Satan for it sees Satan.164 CHAPTER 15. But Muhammad had none to spare at the time. so he told F¯tima: “May I not direct you to something better than what you have asked for? When a you go to your bed. a Muhammad’s other son-in-law. DESTINY. who in turn gave her to his son ’Abdullah. For example. 7 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. as a gift. KNOWLEDGE. p.” Muhammad tells the a believers (6581). one to ’Usm¯n. Two other girls from the same booty were given as gifts. REMEMBRANCE OF GOD of acquiring a slave for herself. i a She was part of the war booty won from the Ban¯ Haw5zin. Demonology is the other side of theology.

they also tell us about the Day of Judgment. If they so wish. According to another tradition. Their Inmates. “amongst the inmates of Paradise. Muhama mad tells us that he “stood upon the door of Fire [Hell] and the majority amongst them who entered there was that of women” (6596). Muhammad says that he has solved all the problems of the believers except the problems created by women. the first trial for the people of Israel was caused by women” (6606). though Paradise may be no more than an “opiate” of the poor. In book thirty-four. So avoid the allurement of women: verily. the Last Day The next four books tell us something about Paradise and Hell and their respective inhabitants.Chapter 16 Paradise. he tells his ummah: “The world is sweet and green [alluring] and verily All¯h is going to install you as Viceregent in it in a order to see how you act. the Communists can claim Muhammad as their own. “I have not left after me turmoil for the people but the harm done to men by women” (6604). Hell. 165 . called the “Book of Heart-Melting Traditions” (al-Riq¯q). THE POOR The poor fare better at Muhammad’s hand. “I had a chance to look into Paradise and I found that majority of the people was poor” (6597). and the Turmoils and Portents of the Last Hour.” women will “form a minority” (6600). On the other hand.

i. Muhammad said. Muhammad tells us that on the Last Day “All¯h. the nonbeliever “finds no virtue for which he should be rewarded in the Hereafter” (6739). and roll up the sky a in His right hand and would say: I am the Lord. the last creation at the last hour of the hours of Friday. where are the sovereigns of the world?” (6703). It would be a feast in honour of the people of Paradise. THE CREATION Muhammad tells us that All¯h “created the clay on Saturday and He created the a mountains on Sunday and He created the trees on Monday and created the things entailing labour on Tuesday and created light on Wednesday and He created the animals to spread on Thursday and created Adam after ’Asr [the afternoon prayer] on Friday. and the Almighty would turn it in His hand as one of you turns a loaf while on a journey. while the inmates of Paradise are feasting on the fare described above. then he asked his audience whether they would also like to be informed “about that with which they would season it [bread]. . THEIR INMATES. between afternoon and night” (6707). THE DESTRUCTION The Last Day .e.166 CHAPTER 16.” he told them. . “the nonbelievers would be made to assemble by crawling on their faces” (6737). PARADISE. Thanks to his reward in this world. “the earth would turn to be one single bread . THE LAST DAY THE DAY OF JUDGMENT In book thirty-seven (Al-Qiy¯ma wa’l Janna wa’n-N¯r). HELL. The believer will be doubly blessed. On this day.. But the next had¯ suggests is a more balanced distribution of All¯h’s blessings. the Exalted and Glorious. B¯l¯m is “ox aa aa and fish from whose excessive livers seventy thousand people would be able to eat” (6710). will take in His grip the earth .” “With b¯l¯m and fish. All¯h “would confer upon him His blessings in this a world and would give him reward in the Hereafter” (6739). giving a description of the a a Day of Judgment. and of Paradise and Hell. NONBELIEVERS On the Day of Resurrection. .the day of the destruction of the world-is also described.” Then he laughed “until his molar teeth became visible”. . . All¯h rewards the nonbeliever in this a a world and the believer in the hereafter (6740).

167 Either way. and heedless. what had been demanded from you was quite easier than this [the belief in the Oneness of All¯h] but you paid no heed to it” (6733-6736). even the one least tormented. Muhammad had other miraculous powers at his command. In fact. no Jew . . a Partnership is associated to Him [polytheism]. whether. “If ten scholars of the Jews would follow me. For example. afflict them with seven famines as was done in the case of Yusuf. he would like to secure his freedom from the awaiting fire by paying all that gold. the “moon was split into two. “When All¯h’s Messenger saw people turning back from religion” he said: a ”O All¯h. Muhammad simply could not stand the a nonbelievers. The nonbeliever will answer yes. this power failed him when it came to persuading the Jewish scholars. so they were a afflicted with famine by which they were forced to eat everything until they were obliged to eat the hides and the dead bodies because of hunger ” (6719). MUHAMMAD’S CURSES All¯h may be patient but not His Prophet. and fatherhood of a child is attributed to Him [Christianity]. What are all the pleasures of the earth compared to even one distant feel of the hellfire? Nothing. . but in spite of this He protects them [people) and provides them sustenance” (6731). Muhammad told his companions: “Bear witness to this” (6725).” one part of it behind the mountain and the other part on this side of the mountain. if he possessed all the ¯ gold of the earth. but “it would be said to him: You have told a lie. Allah will ask the nonbeliever. But what can All¯h do? a The nonbeliever is a bad cost accountant. it is still not a fair deal. THE SPLITTING OF THE MOON Besides the power to curse. THE JEWISH SCHOLARS While Muhammad had power over nature. a ¯ ALLAH’S PATIENCE All¯h is long-suffering. What is this world compared to the hereafter? Not even “a gnat” (6698). He shows “patience at listening to the most irksome things. it is cheating. On the Day of Resurrection. .

A Gnostic theology sees a secret Godhead in man. a prophetic one. “Verily. The former is pantheistic in approach and temper. This concept is known as qar¯ in Islamic theology. . also see 41:25). A practice worthy of emulation by most sermonizers. the word means “the one in united” (pl. they are intimately joined to ¯ a Muslims also.168 CHAPTER 16. In the Qura an. Literally. a devil. but he is hopeful that he would sow the seed of dissension amongst them. but All¯h helps me against him and so I am safe from his hand a and he does not command me but for good” (6757).” Muhammad declared (6752).” Muhammad declared (6711). in the Sunn¯h. the latter is pandaimonic or. the demons are only attached to infidels. SATAN AND THE PROPHET Muhammad robbed Satan of his divinity but evidently not of his power for mischief. ¯ EVERYONE HAS HIS OWN DEVIL: QARIN Muhammad did not believe that everyone has his own god but he did believe that everyone has his own devil. but it finds its full development in the Sunn¯h. quran¯). more precisely. “There is none amongst you with whom is not an attache from amongst the jinn [devil]. THEIR INMATES. Mas’¯d tells us that “All¯h’s Messenger did not deliver us sermons on u a certain days fearing that it might prove to be boring for us” (6775). PARADISE. THE LAST DAY would be left upon the surface of the earth who would not embrace Islam.” 43:36. and it refers to the demon that is joined inseparably to every man. with you too? a Thereupon he said: Yes. a The concept is mentioned in the Qur¯n (“We assign unto him a devil who would be his a mate. the Satan has lost all hopes that the worshippers would worship him in the peninsula of Arabia. MODERATION IN GIVING SERMONS ’Abdullah b. HELL. particularly in the matter of sowing dissension among the believers. pandemonic. The Companions said: All¯h’s Messenger.

“None amongst you would attain salvation purely because of his deeds. The ranking in Paradise will follow the ranking on earth. there is a tree under the shadow of which a rider of a fine and swift-footed horse would travel for a hundred years without covering the distance completely” (6784). The north wind will blow and would scatter fragrance on their faces and on their clothes and would add to their beauty and loveliness” (6792). with rather exclusive quarters for the apostles. but if you fail. It is not God’s grace that wins salvation but either the atoning death of His only son or the intercessory power of His last Prophet. then after them others in ranks” (6796). HIERARCHY Paradise is not without its hierarchy. appears with still greater frequency . Muhammad anticipates Luther and Calvin by a thousand years. . less than the word “Hell” (jahnam). In the Qur¯n. he is already one of God’s elect or damned long before he is even born. The inhabitants of the lower regions of Paradise “will look to the upper apartment of Paradise as you see the planets in the sky” (6788). An-N¯r. he advises. CALVINISM In religions where theology is supreme. a “In Paradise. . which appears 76 times.121 times. A constant Bower of Bliss. a “the Fire. and Its Inmates”.169 PARADISE (Al-Janna . when Thou hast given us what Thou hast not given to any of Thy creatures?” (6787). A man is justified by faith. Paradise has its own version of a beauty salon. O Lord. “The first group of my Ummah to get into paradise would be like a full moon in the night. Its Description. Paradise and Hell go together. they would be like the most significantly glittering stars . Then those who would be next to them. but two-thirds of it really is on Hell and its inmates.” Muhammad says (6760).” the Qur¯n’s pet name for Hell. In the Prophet’s eschatology. “Observe moderation” in your doings. Its Bounties. “try to do as much as you can do and be happy for none would be able to get into paradise because of his deeds alone” (6770). the word “Paradise” (jannat) a appears 64 times. .“The Garden”) The thirty-eighth book is called “The Book of Paradise. moral action occupies a secondary place. a street to which the inhabitants “would come every Friday. The inhabitants of Paradise show their happiness by telling All¯h: “Why should we a not be pleased. The pleasure of seeing others denied Paradise is in fact greater than the pleasure of seeing even one’s own self rewarded.

170 CHAPTER 16.” Muhammad adds that the people who came after Adam “continued to diminish in size up to this day” (6809). created Adam in His own image with His length of sixty cubits . So he who would get into Paradise would get in the form of Adam. any that they may desire” (56:2021). Let us therefore ih add a few more details to the scanty picture of Paradise by referring to the Qur¯n and a some other traditions and commentaries. nor void excrement. incidentally. “they will have fruits. “They will belch and sweat (and it would be over with their food). The immeasurable is measured. THEIR INMATES. LAVATION For his habitation in Paradise. and the shades of the Garden will come low . They will be “reclining on raised thrones. The inhabitants of Paradise will eat and drink but they will “neither pass water. and their sweat would be that of musk” (6798). rivers of honey pure and clear” (47:15). PARADISE. ¯ THE QURANIC PARADISE The Sah¯ Muslim is rather niggardly in its description and promise. . the believer will have a “tent of a single hollowed pearl. Then what will happen to the food they eat? The whole catabolic process will change. the breadth of which would be sixty miles from all sides” (6805). THE LAST DAY GOD’S HEIGHT Muhammad tells us the height of the inhabitants of Paradise and. HABITATION. nor will they spit” (6795). . the Exalted and a Glorious. rivers of a a milk whose taste does not change. SPOUSES The Sah¯ Muslim allows the believers only two spouses each in Paradise. For food. his length being sixty cubits. “Their combs would be made of gold and the fuel of their braziers would be aloes and their sweat would be musk and their form would be the form of one single person according to the length of their father sixty cubits tall” (6796). less than ih on earth. rivers of wine. but they will be so beautiful that “the marrow of their shanks would be visible through the flesh” (6797). the height of Adam and even of God. nor will they suffer from catarrh. “All¯h. HELL. . a joy to those who drink. The Qur¯n promises the believers and muj¯hids “rivers of water incorruptible.

The believers will recline on lofty couches (according to some commentators. upon them will be green garments of fine silk and heavy brocade. so he will have women galore in Paradise.171 over them. What is denied on earth is promised in Paradise: silk dresses. wine. 9:111. 52:17-24. will dwell his wives. HOURIS Houris are promised. One would have thought that the believer?s provision of women in this world was pretty generous. and they will be adorned with bracelets of silver” (76:13-21). ‘couches’ means ‘women’). for ever virgins. a 56:15-40. quoted in commentaries like the Tafseer Mazahar¯ the Tafseer i. golden vessels. they will drink of a cup of wine mixed with Zanjab¯ il ¯ And around them will be youths of [ginger]. ’Umar. 10:9-10. According to ’Abdullah b. 47:15. which we have already mentioned. and there would be a fountain called Salsb il. on lofty sofas and of a rare creation. Young slaves (ghilm¯n) a like “hidden pearls” will wait on them (52-54). For example. 4:13. A man will be able to procure any beautiful woman he desires from that market. houris with swelling bosoms. . OTHER TRADITIONS Other traditions. describe the a i. houris “unfailing and unforbidden. with whom he will make love successively. in every corner of the believer’s tent of a single hollowed pearl. 66:8. We can only mention the subject here. but for a fuller account the reader can refer to the following verses in the Qur¯n: 2:25. And amongst them will be passed round vessels of silver and goblets of crystal. 55:46-76. but apparently any restrictions in the matter were irksome. a i. a sensual delights of the celestial region with greater abandon. Q¯dar¯ and the Tafseer Haqq¯n¯ and reproduced in the Qur¯n Parichaya. beloved and equal in age” (56:33-40). the bunches of fruits will hang low. and others. 76:12-22. retiring glances. youths of such beauty that you would think a ¯ them scattered pearls. Paradise will have a bazaar for the exclusive sale and purchase of beauty and beautiful faces. perpetual freshness [vilud¯num mukhalad un].

According to ’Abdullah b. every room will also have seventy maid-slaves. THEIR INMATES. and every couch will be covered with seventy carpets of every color. Each houri will u have seventy garments. 112. though rather mathematically expressed. and eight thousand women who have known men. the number of slaves is ten thousand. According to Ab¯ Sa’id.172 CHAPTER 16. According to another tradition. Gibbon says that Muhammad did not give any specifics about the male companions of the 1 Aldous Huxley. PARADISE. and on every table there will be seventy dishes of seventy colors. THE LAST DAY NUMBER OF SLAVES According to a tradition narrated by the same authority. and seventy-two women. HELL. .” NUMBER OF HOURIS Anas stinted on women. According to Anas. p. every orgasm will last for six hundred years. every room will have seventy couches. the meanest pearl of which would give light between the east and the west. when a believer embraces any such houri. every Muslim will own a mansion of pearls. even the least of the inhabitants of Paradise will have one thousand slaves waiting on him. these women will put on see-through dresses. each of them will have seventy thousand boys waiting on her. 1980). four thousand virgins. According to him. still furu ther. Ab¯ Huraira increases the number. “the least amongst the people u of Paradise shall have eighty thousand slaves. He will have the strength to have intercourse with them all. every room will also have seventy tables laid out. every house will have seventy rooms of emeralds. every inhabitant of Paradise will have at his disposal five hundred houris. Every believer will have the capability of copulating with each of these houris and maids. ’Umar. but her lover will be able to look through all of them and see the marrow of the bones of her legs. holding the train of her robe. Moksha (London: Chatto & Windus. 1 NO SIMILAR REWARDS FOR WOMEN It has been observed that faithful Muslim females are denied the analogous reward. in the Muslim Paradise. According to a tradition mentioned by Aldous Huxley. and a houri will be sitting on each carpet. SEE-THROUGH GARMENTS According to Ab¯ Sa’id. every mansion will have seventy houses of rubies. and she will have a crown on her head.

his senior. ’Amr was the first Khozaite king (A. Muhammad also “saw ’Amr b. Ab¯Harair reports: u “We were in the company of All¯h’s Messenger when we heard a terrible sound. The idea of investing the unbeliever with such a thick skin is that he “should be able to suffer the torment of the Hell-Fire for a long time. a animals which are not loaded and are let loose for the deities (6839). are severely punished. There are two kinds of the animals to be dedicated: al-bah¯ animals which are left unmilked except for the idols.” as the translator explains (note 2999). . In caloric heat. “There would be among them those to whom Fire will reach up to their ankles. to some up to their waists. 200) who set up idols brought from Syria. “The sinners would be thrown therein and it would continue to say: Is there anything more?” (6825).” He was the first to dedicate animals to deity. “the molar teeth of an unbeliever will be like Uhud [a hill just outside Medina] and the thickness of his skin a three nights’ journey” (6831). brother of Ban¯ Ka’b. The hunger of Hell is inexhaustible. Stones will hurtle down on the inmates of Hell with great force. the fire we know here on earth is only “one-seventieth part of the Fire of Hell” (6811). In the S¯ras from this period. and to some up to their collar-bones” (6816). the sexual delights and orgies became subdued. u a 4:57). the houris of old are replaced by “pure wives” (Qur¯n 2:25. dragging his intestines in Fire. Similarly. Luhayy b. to some up to their knees. and as-s¯’iba. “I saw ’Amr b. the son of Abraham.173 female elect because he did not want to arouse the jealousy of the husbands or to disturb their felicity by inducing them to have suspicions about everlasting marriages in Paradise. Thereupon a All¯h’s Apostle said: Do you know what is this? We said: All¯h and His Messenger know a a best. the legendary progenitor of the Arabs. ira. Sir William Muir makes the psychologically significant observation that Muhammad’s more voluptuous accounts of heaven derive from the period when he was living in a monogamic relationship with Khad¯ a woman of threescore years and also fifteen years ija. But as his harem swelled.D. Khinzif. Those who tampered with the pure religion of Ishmael.” Muhammad tells Ab¯ u u Huraira (6838). Cam’a b. Amir al-Khuz¯’i dragging his intestines in a Fire. In Hell. Thereupon he said: This is a stone which was thrown seventy years before in Hell and it has been constantly slipping down and now it has reached its base” (6813). HELL Muhammad’s accounts of Hell are equally intimate. According to Muslim thinking.

And He said: I have sent thee [Muhammad] in order to put you to test and put those to test through you. . I said: My Lord. “As polytheists. THEIR INMATES. there is no death for you. And I sent the Book to you .” somebody replied. . . . there is no death for you. Verily. and ’Umar wondered how the Prophet could hold a discourse with them. .” Muhammad revealed (6859). You send an army and I would send an army five times greater than that. PARADISE. MUHAMMAD’S MISSION While delivering a sermon one day. . Muhammad said: “Behold. and addressing each of them by name. they would break my head . . Muhammad let the dead bodies of the unbelievers who fought and died at Badr lie unburied for three days. and All¯h said: you turn a them out as they turned you out. my Lord commanded me that I should teach you which you do not know and which He has taught me today . THE POLYTHEISTS The punishment of the unbelievers does not wait till the day of Resurrection. . “All¯h would admit the inmates of Paradise into Paradise a and the inmates of Hell into Hell. HELL. “By Him in Whose Hand is my life. thrown into the well of Badr” (6869-6870). It begins immediately after their death. All¯h looked towards the people of the world and He showed hatred for the Arabs and the a non-Arabs. even you cannot hear more distinctly than they.174 CHAPTER 16. O inmates of Hell. but they lack the power to reply. THE LAST DAY ETERNAL DAMNATION After the believers and the unbelievers are sifted and sent to their respective abodes. You would live forever therein” (6829). The Prophet and his Companions sighted five or six graves during a journey. . Then he sat by the side of the bodies. said: “Have you not found what your Lord had promised you to be correct?” The bodies had decayed. Then the Announcer would stand between them and say: O inmates of Paradise. but with the exception of some remnants from the People of the Book. “These people are passing through the ordeal in the graves. the chapter is closed forever. . Then he had the bodies (twenty-four in number) of the “non-believers of Quraish . All¯h commanded me to burn [kill] a the Quraish.” Muhammad told him. Fight against those who disobey you along with those who obey you” (6853). what I am saying to them. . . . Muhammad asked if anyone knew in what state their occupants had died. you fight against them and We shall help you in this . .

“Not one of you but must enter it [Hell].” ’Aisha asked in alarm. The name he most loved to call it by is An-N¯r. the matter would be too serious for them to look to one another” (6844).” Seven other names are also frequently mentioned. those who disbelieve in his apostleship and mission. the treatment of Hell is more detailed in the Qur¯n than in the Sah¯ Muslim.. THE SEVEN REGIONS Curiously enough. more blazing. naked and uncircumcised. there will be two kinds of reckoning: an easy one and a thorough one. that is not considered good enough punishment for many degrees of infidelity and unbelief. and more scorching are conceived. Though the least of these hells would burn any man a thousand times over. even Muslims must go to Hell. “the Fire. whose faults All¯h wants to overlook.e. and inmates. The is. and similarly the Qur¯nic Hell is more sizzling than the a ih a ¯ Hell of the had is. and the Prophet dwells on them lovingly. THE RECKONING ON THE DAY OF JUDGMENT On the Day of Resurrection. this is Lord’s decree that must be accomplished. So hells increasingly more smoky. or perhaps in mischief: “All¯h’s Mesa senger. a and the scholars of the Qur¯n turned them into seven separate regions of Hell. for his accounts will be closely a scrutinized. Though Muhammad does not refrain from holding out the threat of hellfire to his followers. i.” reveals the Qur¯n (19:71). Prophet revealed: “The people would be assembled on the Day of Resurrection barefooted. will the male and the female be together on the Day and would be looking at one another?” The Prophet sagaciously replied: ’Aisha. The easy reckoning is merely formal and is for the believers. hell is essentially a place reserved for the unbelievers. each with a its own potency. that should be of interest to Freudians. Hell has many names. In a . But woe unto the unbeliever. thermodegree. “He who is examined thoroughly in reckoning is undone” (6874). ¯ THE QURANIC HELL As was also noted in regard to Paradise.175 VOYEURISM There is a had¯ narrated by ’Aisha.

and burnt another thousand years till it became black and dark. . In the S ura Gh¯shiya (“The Overwhelming ¯ a Event. The last are those who saw through Muhammad and no a longer believed in his mission but were afraid to admit it openly. No food will there be for them but a bitter zar¯ which will neither nourish nor i satisfy hunger” (88:1-7). which shall dissolve everything in their bellies. every branch will house seventy thousand serpents . It is called Jahanam. nor leaves anything alone” (74:28). Zar¯ is a bitter and thorny plant. Saqar for the Magi. they shall be given water like molten copper . hypocrites. in the language of u the last S ura. which leaves nothing a unconsumed. loathsome in smell. another terrible food. 17:60. and which is a prepared for those who reject Faith” (2:24). the infidels will be surrounded by a wall Mazahar i. . polytheists..” According to some commentators. The real regions of Hell and their real torments are reserved for unbelievers.e. infidels. each tree there having seventy thousand branches. The Qur¯n asks you to “fear the Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones. Christians. . Muslim theologians a assure us that it will be pretty cool and pleasant for Muslims unless they have committed some great sins.176 CHAPTER 16. . Similarly.. it “will boil in their [eaters?] inside like molten brass. . the water is so hot that even a drop of it is capable of melting away all the mountains of the world. Another tradition tells us that Hell will have seventy thousand jungles. In other S¯ras (e. even a passage or bridge (sir¯t) to heaven. fire which “permits nothing to endure. .” is mentioned.” There are other traditions in the same vein. THE LAST DAY order to fulfill the letter. of fire so wide that it would take forty years to traverse the distance. which shall burst their bowels . PARADISE.” i. They paid him only the prudential homage due to one who is powerful. like the boiling of ¯ scalding water. Some commentators have explained that the men and stones referred to in the verse are none other than the polytheists and the idols they worship. Jah¯ for idolaters. The fire in Hell knows no rival in fierceness. the still more intense fire of Hutamah is for the Jews. there is Sa’¯ for the Sabians. of All¯h’s command. a region in Hell is conceived a which is least oppressive. THEIR INMATES. Muhammad is very ready to send unbelievers to hellfire. The blazing fire of Laz¯. the Day of Judgment). “If the infidels complain of thirst. is for the Christians.g. and never has any light. “Has the tidings reached thee of the Overwhelming Event? Some faces that Day will be humiliated. and ir im H¯wiyah for the hypocrites. . It is Hell only in name and is in fact a purgatory for Muslims.” This had¯ derives from Ab¯ Huraira and is quoted in the Tafseer is u ¯ According to the same commentary. if not the spirit. weary. i u 44:43-46). HELL. and polytheists of different hues and degrees. toiling. idolaters. 56:52. the “Tree of Zaqq¯m. “It burnt a thousand years so that it became red. Muhammad promises a sorry plight indeed for unbelievers of all shades: Jews.

” After this apocalyptical vision Muhammad asked All¯h three things and. “He granted me two. He climbed up a battlement and told the Medinans: “You do not see what I am seeing and I am seeing the places of turmoil between your houses as the places of rainfall” (6891). referred to throughout the Qur¯n and a other Islamic canonical literature. killing another believer is heinous and earns the punishment of hellfire. a And I have seen its eastern and western ends. The swelling of one bite of a scorpion will last for forty years. The subject is closely related to Paradise and Hell. And I begged my Lord that my Ummah should not be destroyed by drowning [deluge] and He granted me this. Hell is an important limb of Islamic theology. . THE LAST HOUR The thirty-ninth book pertains to the “Turmoils and Portents of the Last Hour” (AlFitan wa Ashr¯t as-S¯’ah). both the slayer and slain are doomed to Hell-Fire” (6899). While killing unbelievers is meritorious and wins Paradise for the believers. .177 and an equal number of scorpions. But this does not apply to the early Muslim heroes who engaged in internecine wars. In these texts the misanthropy and hatred of Muslim theology for mankind has found a free scope. In some ah¯d¯ he prophesies the destruction of a is. but He did not grant it” (6904. THE DESTRUCTION OF THE UMMAH Muhammad tells us: “All¯h drew the ends of the world near one another for my sake. ‘Rainfall’ here means ‘catastrophe’. “When two Muslims confront each other with their swords. Both the slayer and the slain are doomed to Hell-Fire only i when the enmity is based on personal grudges and material interests. He prophesied for them a period “in which the one who sits will be better than one who stands and the one who stands will be better than the one who walks and the one who walks will be better than the one who runs” (6893). “There is destruction in store for Arabia because of turmoil which is at hand. Arabia. And I begged my Lord that there should be no bloodshed among the people of my Ummah. 6906). The translator assures us: “This rule does not apply in case of the confrontation between Hazrat ’Al¯ and his opponents. All these are the tormentors of the infidels and the hypocrites. .” he said (6881). but in the case of . a a One is not sure whether by the Last Hour the Prophet means the last hour of Arabia or of the ummah or of the whole world. I begged my Lord that my Ummah a should not be destroyed because of famine and He granted me this.

It will not come a “until the people have [again] taken to the worship of L¯t and ’Uzza” (6945). a ¯ IBN SAYYAD A very interesting story is told about one Ibn Sayy¯d (6990-7004). PARADISE. blind in the left eye and a a is. or the servant of All¯h. a “Don’t you bear witness that I am the Messenger of All¯h?” Muhammad demanded of a . “Hasten to do good deeds before six things happen: the rising of the sun from the West. a Before the Last Hour comes. He disputed Muhammad’s apostleship. with the word k¯fir inscribed on his forehead. THE LAST DAY Hazrat ’Al¯ and his opponents it was the higher ideal which actuated most of them to come i into conflict with one another” (note 3009). which is painful to touch. Another sign of the approaching Hour will be that “the sun would rise from the West” (7039).” Only a very thorny tree known as the gharqad. red in complexion. “for it is the tree of the Jew” (6985). “The last hour would not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them and until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or a tree and a stone or a tree would say: Muslim.178 CHAPTER 16. a Dajj¯l is mentioned in many ah¯d¯ He is a kind of Antichrist. SOME SIGNS OF THE LAST HOUR The great turmoil “which would emerge like the mounting waves of the ocean” (6914) will be preceded by many signs. come and kill him. will be loyal to the Jews and not reveal their identity. the “Ka’ba would be destroyed by an Abyssinian having two small shanks” (6951). Before this Hour jizy¯ will stop coming and the people of a Iraq will “not send their qaf¯ and dirhims [their measures of foodstuffs and their money]” iz (6961). According to the translator. . this refers to either the Christians or the polytheists of Abyssinia. . “The Last Hour would not come unless the Euphrates would uncover a treasure of gold” (6920). the Dajj¯l . THEIR INMATES. who was believed a to be Dajj¯l by the Companions of Muhammad. It will not come “until fire emits from the earth of Hij¯z which would illuminate the necks of the camels of Busra” (6935). HELL. ¯ DAJJAL Muhammad prepares Muslims for the coming Hour. there is a Jew behind a me. He “would be followed a by seventy thousand Jews of Isfah¯n wearing Persian Shawls” (7034). the smoke. ” (7039).

he would not grow very old till the Last Hour would come to you” (7052).” Then there was a competition between the two.” a a Muhammad replied: “If he is that person who is in your mind [Dajj¯l].” and he said to him: “May your nose be besmeared with dust. ready to do his bidding. But he replied: “I bear witness to the fact that you are the Messenger of the unlettered. and the hollowness of his claim a stood exposed.” the translator tells us (note 3037). in fact. The children stood up but not Sayy¯d. Sayy¯d had to guess what was in a Muhammad’s mind.179 him. Muhammad “did a not like it. Muhammad and his Companions met Sayy¯d sitting in a the company of some children. Muhammad had many toughs at his beck and call. Pointing to a young boy. don’t you bear testimony to the fact that I am the Messenger of All¯h?” Sayy¯d denied this and. “Thereupon ’Umar b. he told his followers: “If this young boy lives. dukh. asking Muhammad to bear witness to his status. . Muhammad expected the Last Hour to come at any time. Khatt¯b said: All¯h’s Messenger. That gave point to his claim. a a made the very same claim for himself. you will not be a able to kill him” (6990). permit me that I should kill him. ‘He only chanted dhukh. Sayy¯d could only say dhukh when the word in Muhammad’s mind a was really dukh¯n (smoke). Like the early Christians. According to another story.


forgive me my sin. It helps him as well as his Maker. and All¯h responded in the same way. said: My a servant committed a sin and then came to realize that he has a Lord who forgives his sin. the Exalted and High. He is “more pleased with the repentance of His a servant than an Arab who found his lost camel in the waterless desert” (6610-6619). pertaining to “Repentance and Exhortation to Repentance” (Kit¯b al-Tauba). All¯h would have swept you out of existence and would have a replaced you by another people who have committed sin. I We now take up the thirty-fifth book. It is not an accident a that theologies of man’s sinful nature have also sought a God of mercy. SIN IS DOUBLY REWARDING A man’s sinning is doubly rewarding. “If a you were not to commit sins. It helps the believer to realize that he is a creature and provides an opportunity for All¯h to exercise a His mercy. and All¯h. Sin is doubly blessed. do what you like. According to Muhammad. It helps man to realize his creaturely nature and All¯h to realize His lordly and merciful essence.Chapter 17 Repentance (Tauba).” The servant committed yet a third sin. and All¯h said: My servant committed a sin and then a a he came to realize that he has a Lord who forgives the sins . 181 . In fact.” the Prophet told his ummah (6620-6622). Psychologists tell us that the joys of a sinning are great but the joys of repentance are even greater. a All¯h loves repentance in a believer. I have granted you forgiveness” (6642). He again committed a sin and said: My Lord. All¯h loves to see the believer repent more than He hates to see him sin. . and then asked forgiveness from All¯h. forgive me my sin. . but now a He added: “O servant. It blesses him who sins and Him Who forgives. All¯h said: “A servant committed a sin and he a said: O All¯h.



All¯h says: “My mercy predominates my wrath” (6626). Of this mercy, He bestows a a one-hundredth part “upon the Jinn and human beings and the insects,” the part with which they love one another; but He “has reserved ninety-nine parts for His servant on the Day of Resurrection” (6631). This reserve of mercy will be handy on this Day for saving the Muslims from the fire of hell, which is also needed for dealing with the infidels, or k¯firs. ‘God’s wrath’ is an important concept in Semitic religions. a

A Muslim came to Muhammad and said: “All¯h’s Messenger, I sported with a woman a in the outskirts of Medina . . . [and] committed an offence short of fornication . . . Kindly deliver verdict about me.” The man wanted Muhammad to impose the penalty of hadd (a category of punishments defined in the Qur¯n or in the had¯ on him. Ab¯ Bakr and a is) u ’Umar felt that the man had committed a serious offense, but according to some traditions, ’Umar gave him the oft-repeated advice of the Prophet, which is both worldly-wise as well as pious: “All¯h concealed your fault. You had better conceal it yourself also.” a Meanwhile, Muhammad had a revelation: “And observe prayer at the ends of the day and in the first hours of the night. Surely good deeds take away evil deeds” (Qur¯n a 11:115). Following this he dismissed the man, telling him: “All¯h has exempted you from a the imposition of hadd, or from your sin.” Someone who was present at the time asked Muhammad whether the promise of pardon related only to that individual alone. “No, but the people at large,” Muhammad said reassuringly to all the believers (6655-6661). The two prayers mentioned are the morning and evening prayers. The one destroys the sins of the night, and the other the sins of the day. And, presumably, after reciting them the believer is refreshed and ready for his next bout of sin. Such is human nature.

The next five ah¯d¯ (6665-6669) are very interesting. All¯h does not exactly forgive a is a the sins of the believers but visits them on the unbelievers. He punishes the unbelievers for the sins of the believers. In this way, both His wrath and His mercy are established. “When it will be the Day of Resurrection All¯h would deliver to every Muslim a Jew or a a Christian and say: That is your rescue from Hell-Fire,” Muhammad tells his followers (6665). All¯h’s sense of fairness and justice is no better than that of the believers. Thus a

183 the believers create All¯h in their own image. a Muhammad also promises his followers that on the Day of Reckoning, All¯h will tell the a Muslims: “I concealed them [your sins] for you in the world. And today I forgive them.” But as for the nonbelievers, their sins will be exposed before the whole world and “there would be general announcement about them before all creation,” and it will be advertised that they “told lies about All¯h” (6669). a

The book contains a long had¯ which relates to a scandal involving ’Aisha, the [childis ]wife of the Prophet. It happened in the fifth year of the Hijra (December A.D. 626), when Muhammad was returning to Medina after defeating the tribe of Ban¯’l-Mustaliq u in a surprise attack and taking many prisoners, including Juwair¯ iyya. ’Aisha, who was thirteen years old at the time, had accompanied the Prophet on the expedition, together with another co-wife, Umm Salama. ’Aisha reports: “Whenever All¯h’s Messenger intended to set out on a journey he cast a lots amongst his wives and took one with him in whose favour the lot was cast.” Luck favored her (as it did suspiciously too often), and she accompanied the Prophet on the expedition. During the last, leg of the return journey, ’Aisha was left behind. In the early morning, she had gone out into the fields to relieve herself. Returning to the camp, she discovered that she had dropped her necklace, so she went back to recover it. While she was away, the caravan started for Medina. Apparently no one realized that she had been left behind because the camel carrying her haudaj was with the caravan. The bearers, thinking she was inside it, had placed the haudaj on the camel. “The women in those days were light of weight and they did not wear much flesh, as they ate less food; so they did not perceive the weight of my haudaj as they placed it on the camel,” ’Aisha explains. When ’Aisha returned to the camp after finding her necklace, she discovered that the caravan had left. So she waited and even slept at the same spot, calculating that they would come to fetch her once the mistake was discovered. “I was overpowered by sleep and slept,” she says. Then a young soldier, Safw¯n b. Mu’attal Sulam¯ Zakw¯n¯ who had also a i a i, lagged behind for some reason, saw her, recognized her, and gave her a ride back. “By Allah, he did not speak to me a word and I did not hear a word from him except Inna lill¯ ahi [Innalill¯hi wainna ilaihi r¯ji’ un, “we are for All¯h and to Him we have to return”] ¯ a a ¯ a and I covered my head with my headdress. He made his camel kneel down and I mounted the camel . . . and he moved on leading the camel by the nosestring on which I was riding,” ’Aisha says. Under everyone’s gaze, ’Aisha and Safw¯n returned together. This started gossip, a which soon developed into a scandal. The participants in the gossip were not merely peo-



ple who were lukewarm toward Muhammad, such as ’Abdullah ibn Ubayy, a member of the Kh¯zrajite clan of ’Awf and a leading citizen of Medina, who had come to distrust Muhama mad; they also included supporters of the Prophet, such as the poet Hass¯n, Hamna, the a daughter of Jahsh and sister of the Prophet’s wife Zainab, and Mistah, a relative and dependent of Ab¯ Bakr, the father of ’Aisha. u Muhammad was much disturbed and perhaps had his own suspicions. He turned cold toward ’Aisha, so much so that she sought his permission to go to her father’s house. The permission was given. ’Aisha’s mother tried to console her, saying: “By All¯h, if there is a a handsome woman who is loved by her husband and he has co-wives also they talk many a thing about her.” Muhammad consulted his close relatives, particularly ’Al¯ and Us¯ma b. Zaid. Us¯ma i a a said: “All¯h’s Messenger, they are your wives and we know nothing else about them but a goodness.” ’Al¯ advised Muhammad to divorce ’Aisha: “All¯h has not put any unnecessary i a burden upon you in regard to your wives. There are a number of women besides her.” ’Al¯ i also suggested that ’Aisha’s maid be questioned. Bar¯ the maid, was sent for. ’Al¯ struck ira, i her (showing that the manners of the Prophet’s family were quite feudal and no better than those of the unbelievers), and warned her to speak the truth. Bar¯ could throw no light ira on the incident in question but said that she had never found any wrong in ’Aisha except that “she goes to sleep while kneading the flour and the lamb eats that.” Thus a month passed. Now Muhammad went to the pulpit and reprimanded his followers for their scandalmongering. “Who would exonerate me from imputations of that person [was the reference to ’Abdullah ibn Ubayy or to Hass¯n the poet, another Kh¯zrajite?] who a a has troubled me in regard to my family? By All¯h, I find nothing in my wife but goodness,” a he appealed. This touched a loyal chord in the hearts of Sa’d b. Mu’az and Usaid b. Huzair. They stood up and promised to punish any delinquent, if the Prophet so wanted it. “I defend your honour . . . If he [the delinquent] belongs to the tribe of our brother Kh¯zraj a and you order us we would comply with your order,” Sa’d b. Mu’az, the chief of the Aus, told Muhammad. A quarrel now broke out between him and the chief of Kh¯zraj, Sa’d a b. Ub¯da, but Muhammad pacified them for the time being. a Next Muhammad went to Ab¯ Bakr’s house, determined to put an end to the matter. u He again asked ’Aisha to confess if she had done anything wrong. “’Aisha, this is what has reached me about you and if you are innocent, All¯h would Himself vindicate your a honour, and if accidently there has been a lapse on your part seek forgiveness of All¯h,” a Muhammad told her. But ’Aisha maintained her innocence. And Lo! Then and there a revelation descended on Muhammad establishing ’Aisha’s innocence, even to her own great astonishment. “I was innocent but I did not expect that All¯h would descend wahy matlu [a Qur¯nic revelation] in my case as I did not think myself a a so much important . . . I only hoped that All¯h would in vision give an indication of my a innocence to All¯h’s Messenger,” ’Aisha says. a

185 Coming out of his prophetic fit or trance, Muhammad announced the news: “ ’Aisha, there is glad tiding for you. Verily All¯h has vindicated your honour.” Everybody was a happy. ’Aisha’s mother wanted her to get up and thank the Prophet. But she refused: “I shall not thank him and laud him but All¯h who has descended revelation vindicating my a honour” (6673). God in this revelation not only vindicated ’Aisha’s innocence but ordered punishment for those who spread unproved calumnies against chaste women. “And those who launch charges against chaste women, and produce not four witnesses to support their allegation, flog them with eighty stripes and reject their evidence ever after, for such men are wicked transgressors” (Qur¯n 24:4). And the revelation also took to task those Muslims who had a given ear to the scandal. “And why did not the believers, men and women, when ye first heard of the affair, put the best construction on it in their own minds and say, ‘This charge is an obvious lie’ ? And why did they not bring four witnesses to prove it? When they had not brought the witnesses, such men, in the sight of All¯h, stand forth themselves as a liars” (Qur¯n 24:12-13; also see 24:16). a In obedience to All¯h’s injunction, all the calumniators, including the poet Hass¯n, a a Ab¯ Bakr’s relative Mistah, and even Hamna, the sister of Muhammad’s favorite wife, u Zainab, received eighty stripes each. Zainab had not joined her sister in calumniating ’Aisha, though ’Aisha says that “she was the only lady who amongst the wives of All¯h’s a Messenger used to vie with me [i.e., ’Aisha]” (6673). But it was not all punishment. Perhaps to buy their silence, the punishments were judiciously mixed with rewards. A valuable castle called B¯ H¯, in the vicinity of Medina, ir a was bestowed on Hass¯n the poet. Muhammad even gave Hass¯n a slave-girl named Shir¯ a a in, one of the two Coptic sisters sent him by the Egyptian governor as gifts, retaining the other, Mary, for his own harem. 1 As a result, the poet, who until now had been writing lampoons on Safw¯n, began writing verses in praise of ’Aisha’s purity, slimness, and grace. ’Aisha a also forgave him. “ ’Aisha did not like that Hass¯n should be rebuked in her presence, and a she used to say: It was he who wrote this verse also: Verily, my father and my mother are all meant for defending the honour of Muhammad” (6674). After this incident Ab¯ Bakr wanted to withdraw his support from Mistah, his indigent u relative. In the language of ’Aisha, “Ab¯ Bakr used to give to Mistah some stipend as u a token of kinship with him and for his poverty and he said: By All¯h, now I would not a spend anything for him.” But a special revelation from All¯h came to Mistah’s rescue. a “Let not those among you who are endowed with grace and amplitude of means resolve by oath against helping their kinsmen, those in want and those who have left their homes in God’s cause” (Qur¯n 24:22). a Regarding Safw¯n, the chief male character in the story, Hass¯n had lampooned him a a

S¯ irat Ras ul All ah, pp. 498-499. ¯ ¯

your punishment would be doubled and that is easy for All¯h. Also. (S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. ¯ ¯ . a a Muhammad also instituted a more careful watch over his household after this event. He did not refrain from ada ministering an admonition to all the wives of the Prophet: “O Women of the Prophet! if any one of you should be guilty of unseemly conduct. 33). According to another tradition. The demand for four witnesses in cases of adultery made it difficult to prove such charges in an Islamic court. by One. quoted by Ibn Ish¯q. 498). p. Safw¯n denied the allegation hotly. like that of the former times of Ignorance. For example. she a a added that people found that Safw¯n “was impotent. 2 Safw¯n sang: a Here’s the edge of my sword for you! When you lampoon a man like me you don’t get a poem in return. I have never unveiled any a woman. “Hallowed be All¯h. “And a stay quietly in your houses.186 CHAPTER 17. and make not a dazzling display. we no longer find ’Aisha mentioned as accompanying Muhammad on any expedition after this affair. REPENTANCE (TAUBA).” he said.” The system of purdah was also made more stringent. Safw¯n gave him a sword wound. Of course. p. She further says that “then he died as a martyr in the cause of All¯h” (6674-6675). when he left on the expedition to Tab¯k. according to ’Aisha. 2 Hass¯n’s relatives captured a a him and in spite of Muhammad’s intervention kept him as a prisoner till Hass¯n’s wound a was healed.” 3 a Though All¯h exonerated ’Aisha in this particular case. and though young he died soon a after.” said All¯h (Qur¯n 33:30. I in a poem. he left ’Al¯ behind to keep an eye on u i his household in his absence. In retaliation. ¯ ¯ 3 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. in Whose hand is my life. Apparently Umm Salama replaced her as Muhammad’s companion on subsequent expeditions. 499.

constia is. We cannot reproduce it in full here or put it to an adequately searching analysis. 2/18 Ansari Road. He used the carrot as well as the stick. see our book The Word as Revelation (Publishers Impex India. and the disloyal. but more sophisticated psychological pressures were equally in use. New Delhi . 1 187 . the indifferent. Social cohesion and political and ideological compliance were secured by means of social ostracism. M¯lik) a We shall continue with the “Book of Repentance”. 1 The monotheism of prophetic Islam is particularly shallow and barbarous. But from the beginning. it was combined with other. negative as well as positive. The Prophet rewarded loyalty and obedience with war spoils. The sword and its threat were frequent arbiters.110 002). M¯lik. The fear of divine hellfire was distant. but the For a fuller discussion. and visited palpable punishments of varying degrees on the lukewarm. Even in Muhammad’s time. Apostasy was severely punished. Monotheism does not have the superiority per se that fanatics often ascribe to it. ih tutes a very interesting psychological document. it also indicates to a discerning reader some of the psychological factors that make the members of the ummah or the party fall in line and keep together. more secular appeals. for it is an illuminating story with a family likeness to the notorious ‘confessions’ and ‘self-criticism’ of Communist countries. the appeal of a so-called superior monotheism against an idolatrous and superstitious polytheism. but the reader will do well to read it carefully and give it serious thought. spiritually speaking. political boycott. and ideological untouchability. Islam was not all theology.Chapter 18 Repentance. as some scholars and propagandists would have us believe. II (The Self-Criticism of Ka’b b. Besides the usual breast-beating and protestations of loyalty to the leader.” This had¯ the longest in the Sah¯ Muslim. In it appears a long had¯ entitled is “The Repentance of Ka’b b.

gifting one a thousand din¯rs. and appealed for donations and gifts from his followers. his own son-in-law. sometimes he would go north when his intended destination was south. ’Abdullah . which were now reduced to submission. and the weather was dry and hot. for the expedition was to take them to the very frontiers of Arabia and might embroil them with the garrisons of the Byzantine Empire. REPENTANCE. p. This could be a very coercive phenomenon. was ever present. it was his largest and also his last. Prophet’s swordsmen and hangmen. Perspicacious readers will be able to detect a close resemblance between the atmosphere described in the following had¯ and the more familiar (but only a little more familiar) is atmosphere that obtains under the Communist regimes of our own time. Sa’d. ’Al¯ Zubair.¯ 188 CHAPTER 18. you not only offended All¯h . ’Usm¯n. the boss. If one invited the Prophet’s displeasure. contractors. In planning other campaigns. one also invited a pervasive social boycott. who were now rich and powerful. generals. is. he directed his adherents and allies and the Bedouin tribes to gather in great numbers. And why? Because it was the safe thing to do.but even worse. They had become governors. and so on. a lordly sum. He collected tithes from the tribes. As Muhammad was planning for the biggest campaign of his life. But before we quote from the had¯ let us provide some background information. They gave generously. ¯ THE TABUK CAMPAIGN Muhammad planned an expedition for the autumn Of A. now others do the same in turn. S¯lim b. besides inviting more concrete punishments.) ¯ ¯ . D. One’s own relatives and best friends deserted one. Muheiasa.the i. for he died soon afterward.an offense which many could take a in stride . 789. Muhammad ibn Maslama. or party. the toughs of the ummah. You also had to be on guard against the treacherous daggers of his assassins. he used to keep the time and the target of attack to himself in order to effect the maximum surprise. Umayar. you offended ’Umar. and traders. in fact. I got to him first with tongue and hand. (S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. One had oneself played safe in the past. ’Amr ibn Omeya. In offending the Prophet. 630. These funds were used to provide mounts for the poorer a 2 He sang: Whenever the Prophet gave thought to an unbeliever. ’Abdullah a ibn Oneis 2 and company. the Tab¯k campaign was also called the u “Campaign of Difficulties”. the enemy was far away (300 miles to the north). II (THE SELF-CRITICISM OF KA’B B. But this campaign was to be of long duration. Because of its unusually arduous nature. so this time he gave advance warning to his followers so that they could prepare and equip themselves adequately. MALIK) fear of the strongman. Talha.

and in addition shall they be sent to grievous penalty” (9:101). ‘I can find no mounts for you.” All¯h tells Muhammad (Qur¯n 9:42). For example. “If there had been immediate gain in sight. their spirit was considered praiseworthy. Of such people. and strive and struggle. a a OPPOSITION TO THE CAMPAIGN Many people were lukewarm to the appeal and unwilling to undertake such an arduous and risky journey and in such hot weather. Muhammad made an appeal to all and sundry in the Muslim world. many had to be sent away for lack of funds. . Twice shall we punish them. and there was even a revelation about them from All¯h: “Nor is there blame on those who come to thee to be provided with a mounts.’ they turned back their eyes streaming with tears” (Qur¯n 9:92).’ Muhammad. Though they were sent back. That is best for you. a a But Muhammad did not leave matters with divine threats. say to them that the Fire of Hell is fiercer in heat. They hated to strive and fight with their goods and their persons in the Cause of God: they said. which now included. These Arabs were not exempted from the general conscription and were forced into the march. in the cause of All¯h. Thou knowest them not. with your goods and your persons. They are obstinate in hypocrisy. ‘Go not forth in the heat. if only they could understand” (9:81). and when you said. . but We know them. Ibn Hish¯m’s biography of Muhammad tells us that when a Muhammad learned that certain men opposed to the expedition were meeting at the house . these men were subsequently a remembered with honor as “Weepers”. they would all without doubt have followed thee. if ye but knew” (Qur¯n 9:41). He also took more secular measures. For All¯h has power over all things” (Qur¯n 9:39).” All¯h said of them (9:97). His appeal was All¯h’s own appeal. so they put forward many excuses for not going. But there was opposition in Medina itself amongst the ans¯rs under the very nose of a the Prophet. the whole Arab world. All¯h spoke later on in several Qur¯nic verses: “Those who were a a left behind [in the Tab¯k expedition] rejoiced in their inaction behind the back of the u Apostle of God. and many Medinans put forward all kinds of excuses. Both were condemned by All¯h in the Qur¯n: “The Arabs of the a a desert are the worst in unbelief and hypocrisy. whether equipped lightly or heavily. In the Islamic tradition. And again He a warned His Prophet thus: “Certain of the Arabs round about you are hypocrites . All¯h will punish you a with a grievous penalty and put others in your place. and journey easy. “Go ye a forth. The worst offenders were the Arabs of the desert as well as the Arabs settled in neighborhood of Medina. But Him you would not harm in the least. But even so. at least nominally. a a The Prophet warns these recalcitrants that “unless ye go forth.189 soldiers.

was also there in consida erable force. . I will not accept from you a single thing. which supposedly had been assembling on the frontiers. This satisfied ’Al¯ i. II (THE SELF-CRITICISM OF KA’B B. because the Byzantine army. ’Abdullah ibn Ubayy. it found there was not much to do. But some people insinuated that he was being left behind because he would have been more of a liability than an asset on such an expedition. ’Al¯ to stand to me as Aaron stood to Moses?” i. until I have fought against you and taken captive your little ones and slain the elders. he sent Talha with some men to burn the house. . which was easily done with such a large show of force. Al-Dahh¯k. . This effectively dealt with them. Ru’ba. ’Al¯ was left behind to maintain order among Muhammad’s wives and possibly also i to keep a watch on Medina. And be obedient unto the Lord and his Prophet and the messengers of His Prophet.” The prince readily submitted and became a tributary. I’ll ne’er do the like again I’m afraid. or else pay tribute. I will not fight against you until I have written thus unto you. . 3 A LARGE ARMY GATHERED Eventually a large army gathered and encamped in the outskirts of Medina. sang: a My salams to you. . Specially clothe Zaid with excellent garments . SOME CHRISTIAN AND JEWISH TRIBES SUBMIT When the expedition reached its destination. was nowhere in sight. so go back and represent me in my family and yours. 3 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. Are you not content. But if you oppose and displease them. ’Al¯ i was angered and came out with his armor on. one-third of which was cavalry. ¯ ¯ . MALIK) of Suwaylim the Jew. Muhammad u accepted the submission of three Jewish settlements and two Christian princes.¯ 190 CHAPTER 18. he wrote the following: “Peace be on you! I praise God for you . He whom fire surrounds is burned. One of the victims. although many of its members were still disgruntled. For I am the Apostle of the Lord in truth. 783. those who assembled but stayed back were as numerous as those who actually went. So to occupy his time during the ten days he stayed in Tab¯k. Muhammad pacified him by saying: “They lie. probably for reasons of old age (he died a few months later). According to some traditions. . the leader of the ‘doubters’ or ‘hypocrites’ of the Qur¯n. p. Believe. I left you behind because of what I had left behind. According to some traditions. Honour them and clothe them with excellent vestments . REPENTANCE. the Christian prince of Ayala. The ans¯rs too were not very numerous. But eventually he did not go. the a expedition was thirty thousand strong. To Yuhanna b.

” But later.” Ka’b had no excuse for remaining behind. the a journey was long and the land [which the army had to traverse] was waterless and he had to confront a large army. and “those who had remained behind began to put forward their excuses and to take an oath before him and they were more than eighty This is a reference to the second Pledge of ’Aqabah. Hil¯l. “Nothing could save me but the telling of truth.. 4 . who was a poet.” But this expedition was a different thing. that the Prophet had departed. . but it was All¯h Who made them confront their a enemies without their intention to do so. Ka’b. the Byzantine Empire]”. “All¯h’s Messenger set out for this expedition in extremely hot season. so that they should adequately equip themselves for his expedition. he was determined to deal firmly with those who had failed to accompany him.” He also tells us that “when All¯h’s Messenger a intended to set out on an expedition. so he informed the Muslims about the actual situation. nobody was blamed for remaining behind as All¯h’s Messenger and the Muslims did not set out for attack but for a waylaying the caravan of the Quraish. Ka’b went on postponing his preparations till one day he found. So far as the Battle of Badr is concerned. “When this news reached me that All¯h’s Messenger was on his way back from Tab¯k I was greatly perturbed. “Never did I possess means enough and my circumstances more favourable than at this occasion . to his dismay. . I thought a u of fabricating false stories and asked myself how I would save myself from the anger of the following day. and Ka’b. the “holy prophet had in his mind the idea of threatening the Christians u of Arabia in Syria and those of Rome [i.” Protesting his loyalty to the Prophet. he kept it as a secret. a Now he waited with dread for the return of Muhammad.191 KA’B SPEAKS When Muhammad returned to Medina. The next day Muhammad arrived. expressed his repentance for not joining the Tab¯k expedition.e. the subject a a a of our discussion in this chapter. three were ans¯rs who had been loyal followers of Muhammad: Mur¯ra. neither age nor health nor lack of means. where seventy-three a men and two women of Medina took a pledge in A. Ka’b says: “I had the honour to be with All¯h’s a Messenger on the night of ’Aqaba when we pledged our allegiance 4 to Islam and it was more dear to me than my participation in Battle of Badr. he says the expedition was big. 620 to shelter and protect Muhammad in Medina. Of the many who had remained behind.” he says.” Though eminently qualified to participate. I had never before this expedition simultaneously in my possession two rides.” he said to himself. “more than ten thousand people. he decided to speak the truth. According to him: “I never remained behind All¯h’s u a Messenger from any expedition which he undertook except the Battle of Tab¯k and that u of the Battle of Badr. “I was shocked to find that I did not find anyone like me but the people who were labelled as hypocrites or the people whom All¯h granted exemption because of their incapacity.” Ka’b tells us that in undertaking this journey to Tab¯k. D. a place near Min¯ in Mecca.

) Later. Was it lack of a mount? But Ka’b spoke the truth. KA’B’S ORDEAL Then the ordeal began. They could not compliment him for his “inability to put forward an excuse” as others did.” Even his close relatives and friends avoided him. but a a Qut¯da “kept quiet”. . “All¯h’s Messenger forbade the Muslims to talk with three of a us . They also told him that two other “pious” persons (Mur¯ra b. I walked until I climbed upon the wall of the garden of Ab¯ Qut¯da. but only remain separate from her and don’t have sexual contact with her.” Ka’b says. as I had when I stayed behind. ar-Rab¯ Amir¯ and Hil¯l b. some of Ka’b’s friends came to him in sympathy. and the same verdict has been delivered in their case. “As I read that letter I said. This also is a calamity. . I greeted him but. by All¯h. He says: “When the harsh treatment of the Muslims towards me extended to a considerable time. All¯h’s Messenger has commanded you to remain separate from your wife. Ummayya al-Q¯qif¯ “have a ia i a a i) met the same fate as has fallen to you and they have made the same statement as you have made.¯ 192 CHAPTER 18. . REPENTANCE.” a Muhammad dismissed him. We spent fifty nights in this very state and my two friends confined themselves within their houses and spent most of their time in weeping. a message came from Muhammad to Ka’b. II (THE SELF-CRITICISM OF KA’B B. . and I had the greatest love u a for him.” Ka’b repeatedly a adjured him by All¯h. I never possessed so good means .” This communication could be very incriminating. and repeatedly protested his love for the Messenger of All¯h. he sent his wife . whether He would punish them. “No.” Their excuses as well as their allegiances were accepted. He replied. he did not respond to my greetings. When Ka’b’s turn came. . so I burnt it.” (In the language of the Qur¯n: “There are others held in suspense for the command a of God. The people began to avoid us and their attitude towards us underwent a change and it seemed as if the whole atmosphere had turned hostile against us . “As I was a scribe I read that letter.” This comforted him somewhat. The letter said: “It has been a conveyed to us that your friend [Muhammad] is subjecting you to cruelty and All¯h has a not created you for a place where you are to be degraded and where you cannot find your right honour. . but “he looked at me and when I cast a glance at him he turned away his eyes from me.” When forty days had thus passed.” “Should I a divorce her?” Ka’b asked the message-bearer.” Ka’b himself went to the mosque for prayer to catch the Prophet’s eye. “By All¯h. or turn in mercy” [9:106]. saying that he should wait till “All¯h gives a decision in your a case. and he was my cousin. Ka’b received a letter from the King of Ghass¯n.” As Ka’b was young. a While he was enduring this mental torture. MALIK) persons. “Verily. Muhammad asked him what had kept him back.

By All¯h. They a a felt guilty to such a degree that the earth for all its spaciousness became constrained to them. “I fell down in prostration and came to realize that there was relief for me. and the latter received him with a smiling face. The Prophet advised him to keep some ¯ for his own use. IV. The same message was sent to the other two. Ka’b submitted (6670-6672). ¯ . 201. “But don’t go near him. For God is easy to reconcile and Merciful” (9:118). p. Ka’b obediently followed the advice.” 5 5 W. The self-abasement of the three men and their consequent pardon by All¯h is celebrated a in the Qur¯n thus: “All¯h turned in mercy also to the Three who were left behind.193 away to her parents’ house to be on the safe side. I. p.” According to Al-W¯qid¯ the a i. saying: “The wars of faith are now over. Prophet’s biographer. vol.” Muhammad told her. even until Antichrist appear. other friends hurried with the glad tidings. Then He turned to them. he spends his time in weeping. They wanted to enjoy their new wealth in peace.” Ka’b went to Muhammad in gratefulness. when Muhammad heard this. there is glad a tiding for you. he has no a such instinct in him. vol. “I shall keep with me that part of my property which fell to my lot on the occasion of the expedition of Khaibar” (the booty won at Khaibar was quite large and considerably enriched Muhammad and his Companions). “By All¯h. Life of Mahomet. and so did their souls become straitened within them. Some of them even began to sell their arms. an announcer came “from the peak of the hill of Sal saying at the top of his voice: Ka’b b.” What other glad tiding was left for him in the world? Ka’b understood at once.” he says. “A person galloped his horse and came from the tribe of Aslam and his horse reached me more quickly than his voice. that they might repent. PERMANENT WAR The Arabian peninsula had then come under Muhammad’s sway.” she replied. he said: “There shall not cease from the midst of my people a party engaged in crusades for the truth. 505. On the morning of the fiftieth day. But Hil¯l’s wife got the Prophet’s permission to remain with her husband. Ka’b sought his permission to give away his wealth in charity in thankfulness to Allah for the new life that had been bestowed on him. And they perceived that there is no fleeing from God and no refuge but to Himself. Muir. also Tabaq at. His followers heaved a sigh of relief. M¯lik. as he was a “a senile person”. a KA’B PARDONED At last the dark days ended. Meanwhile.

he has not even the sexual organ with him” (6676). (Where are the four witnesses?) When i ¯ arrived on the scene with sword in hand. ’Al¯ went to the a i: i ¯ said to him: Come out. ’Ali This saved the poor man’s life. MALIK) THE EXONERATION OF THE PROPHET’S SLAVE-GIRL At the end of the “Book of Repentance. We have already mentioned the incident which caused so much commotion and scandal in the harem. ’Ali took hold of his hand and brought him out. with a male Coptic slave to help her in fetching wood and water. p. He came to All¯h’s Apostle and said: All¯h’s i a a Messenger. Mary was kept separately in a distant lodging in the upper quarter of Medina. Peace was eventually restored. and as he person and found him in a well cooling his body. reports: “A person was charged with fornication with the slave-girl of All¯h’s Messenger. I. This is an interesting had¯ and conceals as much as it reveals. a Thereupon All¯h’s Messenger said to ’Al¯ Go and strike off his neck.” there is a brief but interesting had¯ Anas is. he found that his sexual organ had been cut. Hazrat ’Al¯ refrained from striking his neck. Muhammad felt uneasy and jealous and sent ’Al¯ to punish him. But the wives of Muhammad took their revenge by spreading rumors that the two Egyptians were having illicit relations. but in order to avoid further complications.) a ikh i. The slave-girl it menis tions is none other than Muhammad’s own Coptic concubine. II (THE SELF-CRITICISM OF KA’B B.¯ 194 CHAPTER 18. Mary. the center of great jealousy in the harem. particularly ’Aisha and Hafza. (T¯r¯ Tabar¯ vol. he discovered that the slave was a eunuch. . she was never treated with equality by the other wives of Muhammad. who belonged to the Quraish blue blood. 504. REPENTANCE.

But very soon the refugees became stronger than the citizens. named after ¯ ¯ them. a a The name ‘hypocrites’ does not derive from any moral category but was applied to people who no longer believed in the prophethood of Muhammad in their hearts but were afraid to admit it openly in public. But in the peculiar theology of Islam. called Mun¯fiq in. “All¯h has promised the hypocrites. Some of them murmured to each other: “See what we have done to ourselves. It is a small book. or S ura. and some out of spite for the Meccans. We have laid open our lands to them and have shared 195 . The Qur¯n refers to the hyponly twenty-one ah¯d is. MEDINANS DOWNGRADED IN THEIR OWN CITY Many Medinans had offered Muhammad and his followers refuge and protection in their city . containing a a a in a ¯ but in some ways it is important. Muhammad repeatedly threatens the hypocrites with blazing a hellfire. such doubts were morally the most heinous. with pain and alarm but also with increasing helplessness. skeptics. The Qur¯nic scholars coming after him put them in the hottest region of Hell. a bottomless pit of scorching fire. a H¯wiyah. So those Muslim converts of Medina who became doubters were regarded as hypocrites. others out of chivalry. For them is the curse of All¯h and an enduring punishment. and the rejecters of Faith.some out of conviction. therein shall they dwell . that they were being reduced to a second-class status in their own hometown. Some of the citizens saw. a a ocrites very often (twenty-five times). They were doubters. . and there is a whole chapter. Doubting Muhammad’s prophetic mission was hypocrisy.Chapter 19 Hypocrites (Mun¯fiq¯ a in) The thirty-sixth book is on the “Hypocrites.” as the Qur¯n says (9:68). men who began to entertain questions about the apostleship of Muhammad as they came to know him somewhat better. . the Fire of Hell. men of incomplete faith. men and a a women. Their Characteristics and Command Concerning Them” (Kit¯b Sif¯t al-Mun¯fiq¯ wa Ahk¯mihim).

The equation with respect to both local supporters and local adversaries changed appreciably to his advantage. related to Aws Man¯t. many of them believed in war spoils. HYPOCRITES (MUN AFIQ IN) with them all that we possessed. belonging to the Ban¯ Aws. ¯ ¯ 2 Maxime Rodinson. and much of it could also be bought. 676). It also came from those who had never given up their ancestral faith or surrendered their judgment and had not been swept off their feet by the new religious fad. pp. If we had kept our own for ourselves. Muhammad (Pelican Books. Some of them thought that he was no better than a religious humbug. His victory at Badr in January A. 157-158. 1 . It was the proverbial story of the camel and the old woman in a hut. then by All¯h. a centenarian poet u belonging to the Khazrajite clan. and lay in wait for an opportunity to deal with them effectively. First he dealt with the poets whom he feared the most. For now Muhammad was strong and they were weak. Auf. 1 Ab¯ ’Afak. S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. D. 624 brought him the opportunity. The opposition could now be intimidated. appealed to the a a i Medinan tribes of M¯lik. and Khazraj in the name of their old heroes. Do you expect good from him after the killing of your chiefs Like a hungry man waiting for a cook’s broth? Is there no man of pride who would attack him by surprise And cut off the hopes of those who expect aught of him? (Ibn Ish¯q. He seized the opportunity and struck fast. “Yet there is a rider come among them who divided them. Those who no longer believed in him had come to fear him.” she sang. But the realization came too late. converts. The poets of that time were like the journalists of our age. Muhammad detested them. and soon they seized a whole yard.” Some of these verses are quoted by Ibn Hish¯m and W¯qid¯ and a a i reproduced by Maxime Rodinson.196 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 19. the Medinans were also able to arrive at a better estimate of him. 1973). INTELLECTUAL OPPOSITION The opposition to Muhammad did not emanate only from mun¯fiq¯ the disillusioned a in. they a would have gone somewhere else. His success against the Quraish gave him a new power in Medina. 2 Muhammad was much perturbed. said in a poem that the different a tribes of Medina were good neighbors and loyal allies. Some of the members of the opposition were gifted. A woman poet named ’Asm¯ hint Marw¯n. “You obey a a stranger who does not belong among you. p. They could put their ideas into verses. But the result was the same: paralysis of will and action. for though they did not believe in Muhammad. Now that Muhammad had been in town with them for some days.” The Medinans gave Muhammad and his followers an inch.

III. 676. 132. “Go with the blessings of All¯h a and assistance from high. Muhammad treated it in his usual way . Fear is more potent than a sentimental humanist psychology would like to believe. 368. which he did while she was asleep with her child in her arms. They were too cowed. ¯ ¯ . p.197 ASSASSINATION OF POETS “Who will rid me of this pestilential woman?” he said about ’Asm¯. and when they returned after fulfilling their task. “If you desire to see a man that has assisted the Lord and His Prophet.” he told them. “Have you slain the daughter of Marw¯n?” Muhammad inquired eagerly when Omayr returned from his mission. The assassin openly boasted of his act even before the five sons of ’Asm¯. the a assassin had asked Muhammad if he would have to bear any penalty. Also. but nothing a happened. The assassin had a powerful patron.he spat on it and it was healed. When he a replied in the affirmative. Most of the local converts. because of his open sedition and verses. And again there was a ready assassin at hand. Muhammad made a special petition to All¯h for his elimination. Life of Mahomet.” he told the departing assassins. But this was not to be thought of under the new circumstances. There was something new in the atmosphere. Muhammad met them at the very gate of the mosque in welcome. S¯lim ibn ’Umayr of Ban¯ Amr. S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. . “Not two goats shall come to blow for her. One of the conspirators had received a wound by accident. Omayr ibn ’Ad¯ a i. stabbed the man one night while he was sleeping. p. vol. This they did by these perfidious acts. We have already mentioned his case. including the two assassins named above. a blind man and a fanatic convert from her own clan. a new equation. Muir. This turned out to be only too true. offered to assassinate her. deliver me from the son of Ashraf a . Hardly had six months elapsed when the blow fell on another influential half-Jewish poet. Muhammad commended him to his Companions. 3 The same fate overtook Ab¯ ’Afak the very next month. So they still had to prove their loyalty in action to the Prophet and to the new creed.” he prayed.” Muhammad had assured him. the people with whom Ab¯ ’Afak had cast his lot and a i u lived. “Lord. had not fought at Badr. 4 A NEW FEAR DESCENDS According to ancient Arab custom. p. W. Fear speaks louder and strikes home quicker than many other modes of communication. look ye here. Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf. . “Who will rid me of this u scoundrel?” Muhammad uttered aloud. such willful murders demanded tribal vengeance. a new apprehension. “The 3 4 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. ¯ ¯ Ibn Ish¯q. After ’Asm¯’s assassination.

. a 5 6 ibid. common interests. They are enemies. it had no ideology but only certain grievances.” This was the beginning of Huwayyisa’s acceptance of Islam. but they are indeed liars . 369. . a common ideology and passion.” says Ibn Ish¯q. They had promised each other a u ir. As his power increased. Ibn Ish¯q. Furtive in action. ‘we bear witness that thou art indeed the Apostle’ . and within two years he was already having his adversaries eliminated with impunity. The killer’s brother. The Apostle said: “Kill any Jew that falls into your power. Huwayyisa. Muhammad entered Medina in April A. He exclaimed. now the Ban¯ Naz¯ now the Ban¯ Quraizah. 622. chided him: “You enemy of God. ¯ ¯ . 6 THE DEMAND FOR MORE COMPLETE SUBMISSION Muhammad took care to give the local converts no unnecessary offense in the beginning.” Thereupon Muhayyisa b. S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. a Muslim convert. Mas’¯d.198 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 19. u leaped upon and killed Ibn Sunayna. they say. A seal is set on their hearts . D. so beware of them” (Qur¯n 63:1-4). it said one thing and did another. a religion which can bring you to this is marvellous!” and he became a Muslim. did you kill him when much of the fat on your belly comes from his wealth?” Muhayyisa answered: “Had the one who ordered me to kill him ordered me to kill you. the doubters among the local converts. p. “When the Hypocrites come to thee. a THE OPPOSITION DIVIDED AND DEMORALIZED Muhammad’s party had a common command. p. but the opposition was badly divided. HYPOCRITES (MUN AFIQ IN) day after Bint Marw¯n was killed. . the men of Ban¯ Khatma [her husband’s tribe] became a i Muslims because they saw the power of Islam. All¯h told Muhammad that the ‘doubters’ scoffed at him in pria vate while they paid him homage in public and that they were worthless fellows. . a common goal. a Jewish merchant. . 5 a The same author gives us another story to the same effect. 676. .. They are as worthless and hollow as pieces of timber propped up. Muhammad picked different groups of the opposition and struck at them one by one. They have made their oaths a screen . But this period of caution did not last long. I would have cut your head off. All¯h began to demand from them a a more unquestioning submission to the authority of His Apostle and issued more frequent warnings against them. The demoralization was complete. he began to come out more and more openly against the lukewarm. now the Ban¯ u Qaynuq¯. . “By God. u mutual help in private but withdrew when the time for this came. . The Qur¯n speaks contemptuously of the Medinans.

D. If they be driven forth. in March-April A. Muhammad was advised by his best friends to treat Ibn Ubayy with circumspection. It is because they are a people devoid of intelligence” (Qur¯n 59:11-15). and if to save is better than to kill. but if patriotism. ¯ ¯ . . but their hearts are separated. their hands were tied behind their backs and they were taken out for execution. a As early as the second year of the Hijra. 627. leaving their goods behind to the victor. a ’ABDULLAH IBN UBAYY There must have been many people opposed to Muhammad’s growing power. . He was once the leading citizen of Medina. He was a Medinan chief of the Khazrajite clan of Awf who became an early convert to Islam. Thou dost reckon them as one body. But God bears witness that they are liars. but the traditions have preserved the name of Ibn Ubayy as the epitome of them all. his supporters were trying to make him the king of Medina. these will not go forth with them. . Four hundred men without mail and three hundred mailed protected me from all mine enemies. .” 7 Ibn Ubayy was still influential in the affairs of Medina. and his appeal was also a threat. Muhammad besieged this tribe. I am a man who fears that circumstances may change. would you cut them down in one morning? By God. I will not let you go until you deal kindly with my clients [allies]. D. 624. independence of judgment. But after the arrival of Muhammad. S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. Eight or nine hundred men were led out in groups of five or six with their hands tied behind their backs and were beheaded. and their bodies were thrown into trenches dug in the marketplace of Medina. these will not help them. the apostle was so angry that his face became almost black.199 who were promising their Jewish allies that “if ye be driven forth we will go forth with you . . But even then. We have already mentioned the story somewhat more fully. and if you be fought against we will help you . the Medinan opposition had already lost its influence and Muhammad had a field day. a new force entered the scene. This was in February A. and his importance declined fast.” But ’Abdullah insisted and said: “No. It is said that just before Muhammad came. when the same fate overtook another Jewish tribe of Medina known as Quraizah.) 7 Ibn Ish¯q. 363. . he was not an unworthy man. When they surrendered. Three years later. (See pp. p. and loyalty are qualities. But Ibn Ubayy intervened forcefully. He saved the Jewish tribe of Medina known as Qaynuq¯ from execution. 92. by God. because of his influence. Muhammad yielded on condition that the tribe depart within three days. and if they be fought against. He “thrust his hand into the collar of the apostle’s robe.” Muhammad also makes a keen observation about the opposition while fortifying his followers by telling them: “Ye indeed are a keener source of fear in their hearts than God . Muslim traditions have blackened Ibn Ubayy’s name.

The booty included two hundred families. and a a the quarrel soon spread to others. HYPOCRITES (MUN AFIQ IN) DISSENSION BETWEEN THE CITIZENS AND THE REFUGEES Only some months after the tragedy of the Ban¯ Quraizah was enacted.” 8 Later. On the way back. Ibn Ubayy referred to the insolence of the refugees: “This is what you have done to yourselves. I think that between us and ‘these vagabonds of a Quraish’ it is like saying ‘Feed a dog and it will devour you. when confronted with this statement. .’ But when we return to the Medina city. so he accepted the denial. a THE ASSASSINATION OF ’ABDULLAH PROPOSED ’Umar counseled Muhammad to have Ibn Ubayy killed. Muhammad did not want to pick a quarrel at the time. and later. He had an image to protect. an Awsite chief and a staunch Muslim. They are trying to outdo us seeking to outnumber us in our own land! By All¯h. He went to Muhammad and offered to kill his father with his own hands. a a who was a servant of ’Umar. denied it. He did not want people “to say that Muhammad kills his own followers. But even he advised Muhammad to deal with ’Abdullah gently and cautiously. an Arau bian tribe inhabiting a region about eight days’ march from Medina. at a more opportune moment. he gave it serious thought. two thousand camels. about ’Abdullah. and his assassination would have unnecessarily jeopardized Muhammad’s own position. Ibn Ubayy. Jihj¯ struck Sin¯n. a quarrel broke out between a citizen named Sin¯n and a refugee named Jihj¯. and five thousand sheep and goats. the stronger will drive out the weaker. Hoping to play on the rivalry between the two Medina tribes. Huzair. but it rankled in his mind. dissension had u broken out between the citizens and the refugees in which it was proved that the citizens were already the losing party. “Command ’Abb¯d ibn Bishr a to kill him. 8 Ibn Ish¯q. Muhammad was returning after looting the Ban¯ Mustaliq. Tempers were frayed on both sides. ¯ ¯ . he was spared. But Muhammad was cautious. and you have divided your property among them . . With all the proposals and consultations. Muslim traditions and histories tell this story with great pride. the idea of ’Abdullah’s assassination was so much in the air that his own son. But wiser counsels prevailed. Since ’Abdullah was an influential citizen. p. On this occasion. also heard about it. You have let them occupy your country.” he advised. a fanatic Muslim. he consulted Usaid b. S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. 491.200 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 19. who was a chief of the Khazrajites. Aws and Khazraj. All¯h confirmed it openly a in a Qur¯nic verse (63:7-8). with his usual weakness.” But though he refrained from executing the idea immediately.

The ¯ 9 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. other Medinan chiefs would have been furious. PRAYER FOR DEAD UNBELIEVERS FORBIDDEN The next two ah¯d¯ (6679-6680) tell us that when ’Abdullah died. By this time. p. ¯ ¯ . Arqam reports that while returning from a journey in which they “faced many hardships” (after sacking Ban¯ Mustaliq). Whatever u opposition was still left in Medina evaporated with him. let us turn once more to the Sah¯ Muslim. when ’Abdullah’s position became weak through his own vacillation and temporizing. Muhammad at first accepted this denial at its face value.” He also prayed for him even against the protest of ’Umar. Zaid b. on oath. and he was isolated from his people and allies. i The last we hear of Ibn Ubayy is in connection with Tab¯k.” “I know the Apostle’s order is more blessed than mine.D. which took place in the third year of the Hijra (January-February A.” ’Umar submitted. ih ’ABDULLAH INCITES THE MEDINANS Zaid b. placed him on his knee and put his saliva in his mouth. “gave him his shirt which he would use as a coffin for his father. But now they themselves would do it if I commanded them. Some of the persons who were with them came back. ’Umar confessed the wisdom of Muhammad’s decision. he had u already become a back number. but a revelation later descended on him (63:1) attesting that Zaid had told the truth and establishing ’Abdullah as a liar (6677).” Zaid reported the matter to Muhammad. The latter. Muhammad replied exultantly: “If I had killed him on the day you advised me to. the “honourable would drive out the meaner therefrom. Ubayy tell his friends: i “Do not give what you have in your possession to those who are with All¯h’s Messenger until a they desert him.201 Later on. 625). denied having said any such thing. at his a is son’s request. INTIMIDATION Intimidation of the opposition began as early as the Battle of Uhud. who questioned ’Abdullah. 9 The story a is repeated by Tabar¯ too. with this background. Now. they heard ’Abdullah b. the Prophet. who narrates the whole story. according to Ibn Ish¯q. 492.” They also heard him say that on their return to Medina. and he died two or three months after Tab¯k. S¯bit reports: “Alla ah’s Apostle set out for Uhud.” Muhammad also came to his grave and “brought him out from that.

but apparently he was a stout and ih wise soul. But the man replied: “By All¯h. According to Huzaifa. .” All were pardoned except one man. At last they left him unburied” (6693). The hereafter will take care of itself. There is also a had¯ which shows that those who were unacceptable to Muhammad is were unacceptable to All¯h even in death. . They again dug . . but the earth again threw him out. but they found to their surprise that the earth had thrown him out over the surface. Then All¯h spoke: a “Why should ye be divided into two parties about the hypocrites?” So the ranks of the loyal were closed. but the message was successfully conveyed to the future laggards. and he remained busy in finding out his lost thing” (6691). all veiled and only half-glimpsed. and “there was a ceaseless flow of persons. who refused to take the “pledge of the Tree. and it was one of the methods of securing compliance and participation in Muhammad’s ‘holy’ wars. AN OUTSTANDING ARAB J¯bir gives us an interesting had¯ One day Muhammad declared: “He who climbed a is.” Many took advantage of this a divine amnesty. A Muslim who transcribed for Muhammad “ran a away as a rebel and joined the People of the Book.202 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 19. this should not be done” (6684). when Muhammad was returning from Tab¯k. AN ATTEMPT ON THE PROPHET’S LIFE According to certain traditions. . The Sah¯ Muslim does not give us this man’s name. the owner of a red camel. so far as I am concerned the finding a of something lost is dearer to me than seeking of forgiveness for me by your companion [the Holy Prophet]. Either you fight for us or we fight you. Was he a Zen philosopher who lived one day at a time? Sufficient unto the day is the work of the day. People went to him and advised him that he too should go and obtain pardon. All¯h both saves and kills for the pleasure of His Prophet. HYPOCRITES (MUN AFIQ IN) Companions of All¯h’s Apostle were divided in two groups. this hill. One group said: We would a kill them.” When he died “they dug the grave and buried him therein.” and was called a ‘hypocrite’ by the believers. Qays. Thus intimidation had started quite early. . They again dug the grave . and the other one said: No. . Other traditions identify him as Harr b. but the earth again threw him out . his sins would be obliterated. certain of u his opponents in ’Aqaba formed a group with the intention of killing him by throwing him over a cliff. Muhammad knew their identity but told no one except Huzaifa. the hill of Mur¯r. they were twelve men. This tradition is given here in a rather garbled form. J¯bir reports: “All¯h’s a a a . The Prophet cursed them all (6690). who was forbidden to divulge the information.

merely an exaggerated. Ruffaa had been the first to receive ’Umar and offer him hospitality when the latter came to Medina. and as he reached Medina a notorious hypocrite from amongst the hypocrites had died” (6684). there was such a violent gale that the mountain seemed to be pressed. angry. a Jewish tribe of Medina that was one of the first tribes to suffer at the hands a of Muhammad. Ibn ’Umar. The Qur¯n deals with ‘accidents’. a chief of the Ban¯ i Qainuq¯. it threatens and promises. for it is very different from them in a temper and subject matter. and deluded mind (i. who had already chosen his pastures. . Muhammad was returning to Medina after his attack on the Ban¯ Mustaliq. of a mind characterized by k¯ma. DESCRIPTION OF A HYPOCRITE The last two ah¯d¯ of this book describe those who have neither the support of a a is fanatic faith nor the light of a higher philosophy and who are subject to the doubts and temptations of ordinary men. and all such details of little larger spiritual significance. incidents in the life of the Prophet.e.203 Messenger came back from a journey and as he was near Medina. sensuous copy of the here. and moha) are not to be trusted . but that in itself a gives them no true spiritual validity. stands a lunatic or a malevolent criminal. She goes to one at one time and to the other at another time” (6696).. It is feverish in tone. The Yogas tell us that trance is possible at every level of the mind. the circumstances of their revelation. but with the a . “THE BOOK OF COMMENTARY” The forty-first and last book of the Sah¯ Muslim is called the “Book of Commentary” ih (Kit¯b al-Tafs¯ a ir). hereafter. reports Muhammad as saying: “The similitude of a hypocrite is that of a sheep which roams aimlessly between two flocks. All¯h’s Messenger said: This wind has a perhaps been made to blow for the death of a hypocrite. but that the trances of a passionate. u The man whose death the storm caused or proclaimed was Ruffaa. india a vidual men. The Qur¯nic verses are reputed to have come from a mind in trance. dvesa.behind them often a . It tells us about the time. The “Book of Commentary” gives equally external information about some of these verses. It does not deal with the ‘heavenly order’ of the Gnostic traditions (the rta of the Vedas or the Ma¯t of ancient Egypt). The Qur¯n cannot be read like other scriptures. it does not elucidate but merely lays down and prescribes. the place. According to other traditions. Qur¯nic verses often relate to external events.

according to Sir William Muir. ¯ condemnation. In the Qur¯n this appears as a the ninth S ura. among your wives. “was revealed in connection with the tribe of Ban¯ Naz¯ and ¯ u ir. or “Banish¯ ment”). II. I yield my turn to ’Aisha. but she went to him and said: “I am not asking you to sleep with me.” Muhammad agreed. the fifty-ninth S ura. ¯ THE LAST S URA Sa’¯ b. also known as S ura Bar¯at (“Immunity”).204 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 19. It contains only fifty traditions. Jubair reports that S ura Anf¯l (“Spoils of War”). This is understandable. For example. Resurrection Day was far off. ’Aisha tells us that “it was revealed in case of a woman who had long association with a person [as his wife] and now he intends to divorce her and she says: Do not divorce me. that S ura al-Hashr (“The Gathering”. a completed favour upon you. the majority of men and women in the world. but in its present form it is sketchy and discusses an important subject in a superficial manner. HYPOCRITES (MUN AFIQ IN) This book would have been very important if it were comprehensive and gave essential information. ¯ the very last. was revealed id ¯ a ¯ on the occasion of the Battle of Badr. and intention should be the last inspiration of a life that breathed such pathologic theological hatred toward the nonbelievers who constituted then. and adds nothing essential to its subject. But I want to be there. retain me [as wife in your house] and you are permitted to live with another wife. “was meant ¯ ¯ a to humiliate the non-believers and the hypocrites” (7185). on the Day of Resurrection. but chronologically it is one of the last . K¯tib al-W¯qid¯ also tells us in his Tabaq¯t a i. The same with another Qur¯nic verse: “And if a woman fears ill-treatment from her a husband or desertion. which makes such a tall claim. Who were the characters mentioned by ’Aisha? They were the Prophet himself and his wife Saud¯ (Tirmiz¯ vol.” a a ’Umar reports (7154). in the first five ah¯d¯ of the book we are told when and where was a is revealed the following Qur¯nic verse: “This day I have perfected your religion for you. is a a i a that Muhammad wanted to divorce his wife. It a “was revealed on the night of Friday and we were in ’Araf¯t with All¯h’s Messenger. It is entirely fitting that a S ura of such bitterness. . then in her forties. and do even now. that S ura Tauba (“Repentance”). and have chosen for you al-Isl¯m as your religion” (5:4). The information throws no particular light on this revelation. It was in this context that this verse was revealed” (7165). had¯ 899). the eighth S ura. it is no sin for them twain if they make terms of peace between themselves” (4:128).

Muhammad Ashraf. Muhammad Ashraf. English a translation by Mohammed Marmaduke Pickthall. 205 . 1980. Hindi and English translations with original text in Arabic. Rampur: Maktab Al-Hasnat. Ishaitu’l Isl¯m. Seven-hundred-year-old collection of Had¯ very a ih is. 1973-1975. Delhi: Rabbani Book Depot. Palmer. translation. Lahore: Sh. Cairo: Daral-Kitab al Masri. and Toronto: Oxford a University Press. Lahore: ih Sh. Reprint of English translation by Dr. New York.. Urdu translation in 2 vols. Tirmiz¯ Shar¯ Urdu translation in 2 vols.edu/dept/MSA/reference/searchhadith.usc. Qur¯n Majeed. 1973. ih a if. popular and much in use. Delhi: Rabbani Book Depot. a Mishk¯tu’l-Masb¯ [Niche of Lamps]. Sah¯ Bukh¯ri Shar¯ Churiwalan. H. English translation with the original Arabic text by ’Abdullah Yusuf a ’Ali. Abridged Urdu ih a i. Glorious Qur¯n. James Robson.html] Sah¯ Muslim. Translation by E. English translation by Abdul Hamid Siddiqi in four volumes. ¯ QURAN The Kor¯n.Chapter 20 Bibliography ¯ HADIS [The following website of the University of Southern California has extensive collections: http://www. Lal Kuan. i if. Delhi: Kitab Khana. London. Sah¯ Bukh¯r¯ Only partial translations in English available in India.

3rd ed. different classes (tabaq¯t) of Muhammad’s Companions and Successors. H. irat al-Nab¯ is a biography i. 1885. . by Syed a i. popularly known as K¯tib al-W¯qid¯ composed fifteen volumes on a a i. Edinburgh and New York: T. At-Tabari irat al-Nab¯ is an i authoritative source of Muhammad’s subsequent biographies. 1973. A fifteenth-century Persian biography which takes into account many preceding traditions. London: Smith. Ibn Sa’d. and his S¯ of Muhammad. The next most important source on the life of the Prophet and the a Companions. trans. S¯ a ikh i. Scholarly and pioneering study. 1893. Now being reprinted by Idarahi Adbiyati Delhi. The Life of Mahomet by Sir William Muir. 1980. Mahmud. Guillaume. Oxford. Selections from sermons. Mohammad by Maxime Rodinson. Ali Raza. D. BIBLIOGRAPHY BIOGRAPHIES OF MUHAMMAD S¯ irat Ras ul All¯h by Ibn Ish¯q. Scholarly. Karachi: Nafees Academy. The Rauzat-us-Safa by Muhammad b. Delhi-6. English translation. 1976. English translation under the title The Garden of Purity. Tehran: Shahpur Square. Ghaffari. T¯r¯ Tabar¯ or Annals. Tabaq¯t Ibn Sa’d. reprinted. Khavendshah b. popularly known as Mirkhond. 1 and 2. S¯ iras: The Biography of the Prophet. GENERAL REFERENCE Dictionary of Isl¯m by Thomas Patrick Hughes. 4 vols. Urdu translation in 11 vols. Karachi: Nafees Academy. London: Royal Asiatic Society. Clark. Encyclopaedia of Religions and Ethics. 310 (A. SHIAISM Nahj al-Bal¯ghah. Tehran: World Organization for Isl¯mic Services. ¯ died in A. Urdu translation in 8 vols. i. vols. The Life of Muhammad. edited by James Hastings.. 1861.206 CHAPTER 20. & T. and sayings of ’Al¯ trans. and the history of a the Khal¯ ifas up to his own time. E. 1976. Elder & Co. New Delhi: Oriental a Books Reprint Corporation. translated and edited by A. a Shiaism by S. by Tabar¯ The first volume. letters. Tehatsek. and Delhi: Oxford University Press. The very first definitive biography and the source of ¯ a a subsequent ones.. New York. India. Pelican Books. 922).

1897. The author was a a great scholar of the Arabic language and Isl¯mic religious literature. Among other things. a Qur¯n Parichaya by Deva Prakash. Books available at Arya Samaj Dayanand Marg. New Delhi. New Delhi: Impex India.. All¯habad: R. Ratlam (M. a [The World of Fatwas or the Shariah in Action by Arun Shourie. Publishing House. 2005. S.] . reprinted. The Word as Revelation: Names of Gods by Ram Swarup. 1980. 1st ed. Hindi publication in 3 vols. discusses monotheism vis-`-vis polytheism.P. The volumes are a badly printed and lack modern critical aids. 3rd impression.)-India. Rupa & Co.207 GENERAL The Mohammedan Controversy and Other Indian Articles by Sir William Muir.

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