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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

. . . . . . . . . . . . . CASTING THE PEBBLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . KA’BA CLOSED TO NON-MUSLIMS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . COITUS INTERRUPTUS (Al-’azl) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CIRCUMAMBULATION AND KISSING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THE ORIGINAL SIN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NIGHT SESSIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . DIVORCE (Tal¯q) . . . TASTAHIDDA . . . . . . . DEPORTMENT TOWARD ONE’S WIVES . . . . . . . . . . MUHAMMAD’S MARRIAGES . . . CAPTIVE WOMEN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . THE HUSBAND’S RIGHTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ RIHANA AND JUWAIR¯ IYA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 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) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . DRINK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . HUNTING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ANIMAL SACRIFICE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .xii CONTENTS ¯ THE STATE OF IHR AM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . SAF¯ IYYA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . a THREE PRONOUNCEMENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . WOMEN’S RIGHTS . . . . . . . . . . . . PROHIBITIONS . . . . . . SHAVING: MUHAMMAD’S HAIR . . . . . . . . . ON MARRYING A VIRGIN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ZAINAB BINT JAHSH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ¯ ¯ ¯ ZIHAR AND ILA’ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CAST A GLANCE AT THE WOMAN YOU WANT TO MARRY . . . . . . . .

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

in the hereafter. ih In quoting them.” Later on. He came to you in order to instruct you in matters of religion” (1). inform me about al-Isl¯m. pay Zak¯t. It must be accompanied by belief in the aposa tleship of Muhammad. and says: “Muhammad. It discusses questions contains 431 traditions (ah¯d is) a regarding faith. ¯ ¯ ALLAH IS NOT ENOUGH Belief in All¯h alone in not sufficient.” 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. 1 This is the very first had¯ narrated by ’Umar. and you establish prayer. in His angels. observe the a a fast of Ramz¯n [Ramadan] and perform pilgrimage. So also are the notes and comments of the translator. and in the payment of the poor tax (zak¯t) and the observance of fast (Ramza an) and pilgrimage. a Muhammad tells ’Umar: “He was Gabriel. faith in a a Muhammad as His Messenger. This theme runs through hundreds of ah¯d¯ a is. when the inquirer is gone. ifa. and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Alla All traditions in the Sah¯ are serially numbered. Someone comes to Muhammad from a great distance.Chapter 1 ¯ a Faith (Im¯n) The very first book of the Sah¯ Muslim is the “Book of Faith” (Kit¯b al-¯ an). the future Khalis ¯ through several chains of narrators. A delegation of the tribe of Rab¯ visits Muhammad. It ih a im¯ ¯ divided into ninety-two chapters. we give their numbers in parentheses.” 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 1 . Al-Isl¯m is faith in All¯h. faith in His Book. He tells i’a the delegates: “I direct you to affirm belief in All¯h alone. yet without any sign of fatigue. in the resurrection.

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

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

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

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). for the hellfire is on his side. This idea is expressed with less partiality and in more universal terms in the Indian spiritual tradition. incidentally. the Peoples of the Book.” When a woman asks him why it should be so. they will also act as proxies for any Muslims who happen to be sent there. and many things are permissible for him that are not permissible for a polytheist or even for a Jew or a Christian. Another important segment of the infernal population is made up of women. “O womenfolk . but does not affirm his belief in that with which I have been sent and dies in this state of disbelief. “the a . This would also.” the translator tells us (note 2967). but should dwell more lovingly on the Divine within us. Muhammad tells us: “He who amongst the community of Jews and Christians hears about me. His past is forgotten a unless it is good. I saw you in bulk amongst the dwellers of Hell.we should not harp too obsessively on our lapses. And understandably so. Jesus spoke of “lusting with the eyes” regarding it as bad as lust in its more visible form.” The “proof of the lack of common sense” in them is the fact that in All¯h’s law promulgated by Muhammad himself. God knows that man is weak and forgives his lapses and failure but supports his strength and multiplies his good. Muhammad tells her: “You curse too much and are ungrateful to your spouses. 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 Jews and Christians will suffer in hell not only for their own unbelief in Muhammad.5 EVIL THOUGHTS AND EVIL DEEDS A Muslim is All¯h’s prodigal son as well as His spoiled child. The hellfire will be busy consuming the opponents of Muhammad. The less theistic but not less exalted yogic systems would put this idea somewhat differently and in more psychological terms .” a Muhammad tells us (6668). 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). . and there will be no one left for Paradise to receive except the Muslims. “There would come people amongst the Muslim on the Day of Resurrection with as heavy sins as a mountain. his future is assured. solve the problem of space in heaven: “Space in paradise would be provided by Christians and Jews being thrown into Hell-Fire. Muhammad says. and All¯h would forgive them and he would place in their stead the Jews and the Christians. .

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“You humiliated the women. when she sees the liquid [vaginal secretion]. 611). This practice is derived from the Qur¯nic verse: “If you are polluted.” postponing the bath till the end of the night before the morning prayer. “sometimes he took a bath and then slept. . there should be an ablution” u is. puerperium. Muhammad’s practice was that after the sexual intercourse. The translator explains: “The holy prophet is did not take a bath after every intercourse. the narrator of this had¯ “between two acts. or in the colorful language of Tirmiz¯ “with one bath. he simply performed ablution and took a bath at the end” (note 514). he a first washed his hands. then purify yourselves” (5:6).” they told her (610.17 ¯ (semen). . ’Aisha says: “When All¯h’s Messenger bathed because of sexual intercourse. and sometimes he performed ablution only. SINGLE BATH FOR MULTIPLE COITUS Unlike ablution. (605). .” 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. Anas reports that “the Messenger of All¯h used to have sexual intercourse with his wives with a a single bath” (606). coitus. i Ablution was also necessary if one wanted to repeat the intercourse. The same obligation lay on women. the whole body must be washed to absolve it from uncleanliness after certain acts: menses. the bath need not be repeated after each act of intercourse. a believers (603). he then poured water with his right hand on his left hand and washed his private parts . I. the Apostle i: walked over all his women” (vol. had¯ 124). One Umm Sulaim went to Muhammad and asked him: “Is bathing necessary for a woman when she has a sexual dream?” Muhammad replied: “Yes. and pollutio nocturna.” he was told (593). In the words of Ab¯ Bakr. ” (616). “Ablution is obligatory in such a case. a There are over two dozen ah¯d¯ on the subject of Muhammad’s own custom in this a is regard. 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. BATH (Ghusl) For the exercise of prayer.

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

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

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

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

. spoils have been made lawful to me . 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. and the line of prophets is closed with me” (1062). . “They turned towards the new qibla in that very state” (1075). This resulted from Muhammad’s terroristic methods: his assassinations and killings and the constant marauding raids by the Muslims. This is the idea of the world as a “mandated territory” bestowed on the believers by All¯h. The followers had no difficulty and adjusted to the new change with alacrity. ¯ ALLAH ALLOWS MUHAMMAD TERROR AND WAR BOOTY While giving his opinion of the first mosques. For example. the direction (qibla) was changed to Mecca.” says Muhammad. Immediately 1 . my enemies hold me in such terror and awe that they surrender without fighting.” adds Ab¯ Huraira. It strengthened the loyalty of the Muslims to Isl¯m and the Prophet” (note 732). 2 Ab¯ Huraira should know.22 ¯ CHAPTER 3. It must a have made a strong appeal to Arab nationalism. The translator assures us that “this was a change of far-reaching importance . One tradition says: “We prayed with the Messenger of All¯h towards Bait-ul-Maqdis for a sixteen months or seventeen months. “I have been helped a is by terror. they themselves regarded as the wards and special responsibility (zimma) of the civilizing masters. I have been sent to all mankind. . 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. But later on. 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. Other ah¯d¯ mention other points. . PRAYER (SAL AT) their temple in Jerusalem. 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). 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. Then we were made to change our direction towards the Ka’ba” (1072). This wealth the followers of the Apostle “are now busy in getting them. 1 . a We see here that European imperialism with all its rationalizations and pretensions was anticipated by Isl¯mic imperialism by a thousand years. and while I was asleep I was brought the keys of the treasures of the earth. . is which other prophets lack (1058). Another had¯ mentions Muhammad’s power of “intercession” on the Day of Judgment. I have been helped by terror (in the hearts of the enemies). their land considered as a lebensraum or held as a mandate. foe or friend. 2 u is That is. . . . the narrator of this had¯ (1063). Someone told them that the qibla had been changed. Some people were praying their dawn prayer and had recited one rak’ah. Muhammad makes some interesting disclosures.

000 dirhams a year.000 dirhams a year. to wear shoes while praying is permissible (1129-1130). or Civil List. pp. For a fuller account of the Civil List. but clothes having designs and markings on them are distracting and should be avoided (1131-1133). But in a footnote explaining the standpoint of the Isl¯mic shar¯ a i’ah with regard to women joining men in prayer. everyone who had converted to Isl¯m before that date. and their children. The instruction was meant to give them time to adjust their clothing before the women lifted their heads (had¯ 883 and note 665). The Prophet commanded the believer that while praying “he should not spit in front of him. but it is permissible to spit on the left side or under the left foot” (1118). The translator explains that this had¯ relates to a period when is the Companions were very poor and could not afford proper clothing. DOS AND DON’TS There are many dos and don’ts. each of the more than three hundred veterans of the Battle of Badr. he “forbade spitting on the right side or in front.000 dirhams.. thanks to the enormous revenues received from the outlying colonial regions in the neighborhood of the Arabian peninsula. .000 dirhams a year. To eat onion or garlic is not har¯m (forbidden). 5. for All¯h is in front of him when he is engaged in prayer” a (1116). and every boy born in these military quarters received from his birth 100 dirhams annually. According to another tradition. 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). The diw an. 2. For example. Officers of the Arab occupation armies in the different cantonment areas of the empire received yearly from 6. established by ¯ ’Umar specified that each of Muhammad’s widows was to receive 12. vol.000 to 9. II. after Muhammad’s death during the two years of Ab¯ Bakr’s caliphate. They were also told not to precede men in lifting their heads from prostration. But within two decades everything changed. 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.000 dirhams a year. “for the angels are harmed by the same things as men” (1145). 4.23 WOMEN AND MOSQUES Women can go to the mosque but they “should not apply perfume” (893). refer to the T ar¯ Tabar¯ ¯ ikh i. 476-479. Every Muslim had a a place in this classification. a privilege not denied to men who can afford it. is Muhammad commanded the believers to “take out unmarried women and purdahobserving ladies for ’Id prayers. and he commanded the menstruating women to remain away from the place of worship of the Muslims” (1932). but Muhammad found their odors a “repugnant” (1149) and therefore forbade coming to the mosque after eating them.

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

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

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

vol. i. had¯ 912. is .” 3 MUHAMMAD AND HIS MOTHER Muhammad tells us: “I sought [All¯h’s] permission to beg forgiveness for my mother. but loud wailing and false laudation of the dead. who was only eighteen months old. I. according to certain traditions. I sought permission from Him to visit her grave. IV. 3 Tirmiz¯ vol. meaning loud lamenting” (2010). over his expiring child. His followers tried to comfort him by reminding him of his own exhortation not to weep.27 the heart feels. also William Muir. but He punishes for this [pointing to his tongue]. 165. and He granted it to me” (2129). p. Muhammad replied: “It is not this that I forbade. Life of Mahomet. a but He did not grant it to me. This was a fine gesture on Muhammad’s part after sending his mother to hell in fulfillment of the demand for theological consistency. Muhammad also sobbed aloud.


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

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

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

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

What does this mean? The translator finds the statement truly prophetic. When Muhammad returned. of ah¯d¯ 2174 a is and 2175. A man is gives charity. This is true. THEFT. first to an adulteress. give him more who spends.” For his charity might become the means whereby the adulteress “might restrain herself from fornication. Muhammad replied: “It was Gabriel. the rich man might perhaps learn a lesson and spend from what All¯h has given him. For example. with praise to All¯h. who came to me and said: He who dies among your Ummah without associating anything with All¯h would enter Paradise. After a while Muhammad was out of sight but Ab¯ Zarr heard some sounds. 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. One of them says: O All¯h. bring destruction to one who withholds” (2205). is but are not visited by two angels. By citing the male and female population figures for postwar England and showing their disproportion. Ab¯ u Zarr reports that while he and Muhammad were once walking together. FORNICATION. Ab¯ Zarr sought an explanation for u the sounds. he remembered his command and remained where he was. and a the thief might thereby refrain from committing theft. although in their own way they must be reassuring to believers. telling him to stay where he was until he returned. 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. CHARITY AND DISCRIMINATION There is a had¯ which seems to teach that charity should be indiscriminate. for instance.” 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). a . which both relate to zak¯t but also treat matters that have nothing to do with a charity. 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. then to a a thief.” One may suppose that the man’s acts of charity had these wonderful results because they were accompanied by “praise to All¯h” (2230). then to a rich man. he proves “the truth of the Prophetic statement” (note 1366).33 One had¯ tells us: “There is never a day wherein servants [of God] get up at mom. a and the other says: O All¯h. Although he was u apprehensive of some possible mishap to the Prophet. I said: a Even if he committed fornication or theft? He said: Even if he committed fornication or theft” (2174). Came the angel to him and said: “Your charity has been accepted. Muhammad left him to go some other place.

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

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

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

These were the anarchists and purists of the early days of Isl¯m. It was about them. These men. he and his posterity were denounced.” Though the man was spared. Muhammad said: “From this very person’s posterity there would arise people who would recite the Qur¯n. . they would kill the followers of a Isl¯m but would spare the idol-worshippers . . them. who was present. who later on were called the khw¯rij. for in their killing you would get a reward with All¯h on the Day of a Judgment” (2328). took some of the slogans of Isl¯m a a seriously.37 justice?” ’Umar. said to Muhammad: “Messenger of All¯h. 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). but it would not go beyond their throat. permit me a to kill this hypocrite. 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.


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

“taking a meal late in the dawn and breaking fast early at the sunset indicate the fact that one feels the pangs of hunger . a poor man who violated this prohibition got his expiation at no cost to himself.40 CHAPTER 5. . failing that.” says the Qur¯n a (2:187). a is This had¯ was checked and rechecked by Ab¯ Bakr himself. by feeding sixty poor men . Hafsa. a a . Prior to Isl¯m. ’Aisha narrates: “The Messenger of All¯h kissed one of his wives while he was fasting. . he should still go on with his fast. It has a divine sanction.but during the Prophet’s lifetime. . in the month of Ramz¯n. “They have better knowledge. all report that the Prophet used to kiss them and embrace them while fasting. Sexual intercourse is also permitted during the night of the fast. he said. and would observe fast” a (2454). Sexual intercourse during the daytime in the month of Ramz¯n could be atoned for a either by freeing a slave or. . by observing a two-month fast or. the man observing fast separated himself completely from his wives. and then she [’Aisha] a smiled” (2436). There are other ah¯d¯ on the same subject (2451-2456). failing that.” In addition. and Salama. Muhammad’s wives. 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 . even if one gets up in a state of seminal emission and the dawn overtakes him without giving him time for the ordained bath. but when the matter was clarified by ’Aisha and Salama. ’Aisha. This feeling inculcates in one a spirit of humility rather than of stoic pride” (note 1491). Muhammad gave him a basket of dates and told him: “Go and give it to your family to eat” (2457). 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). 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. ’Aisha and Salama. Kissing and embracing too are permissible (2436-2450). In fact. Missed fasts could be completed later on at any time of the year. 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).” and retracted his previous position (2451). At first Ab¯ Huraira is u u thought differently. 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. . Muhammad’s wives. Isl¯m did not a a approve this practice” (note 1502). 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. “It is made lawful for you to go to your wives on the night of the fast.

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

“Every a servant of All¯h who observes fast for a day in the way of All¯h.” ’Aisha further narrates: “So I brought it to him and he ate it”. Other voluntary fasts are mentioned. there will be a gate called Rayy¯n in Paradise. 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. some food came as gift.” After some time. providing useful guidance to a hajji (pilgrim) but of dubious value to a traveler of the Spirit. Its ninety-two chapters contain minute instructions on the rites and rituals of the pilgrimage. FASTING AND PILGRIMAGE (SAWM AND HAJJ) Muhammad migrated to Medina he made it optional for his followers. He asked: “What is it?” ’Aisha said: “It is hais [a compound of dates and clarified butter]. One day. All¯h would remove.” Muhammad tells us. AN IDOLATROUS IDEA Considered from the viewpoint of Muslim theology. his face from the Fire of Hell to the extent of seventy years’ distance” (2570). the whole idea of pilgrimage to Mecca and the Ka’ba is close to being idolatrous. On the Day of a Resurrection. But it has great social and political importance for Isl¯m. “The breath of the observer of fast is sweeter to All¯h than the fragrance of musk. PILGRIMAGE The book on hajj (“setting out”) is full of ceremonial details which have little interest for non-Muslims. a a a because of this day.and when the last of them has entered. but nothing was available. or he may retain it if he so likes” (2573). He may spend it if he likes. The recompense of one who combines fasting with jih¯d will be immense. but we need not go into them here. “it would be closed and no one would enter it” (2569). THE MERITS OF FASTING There are many merits in observing the fasts. Muhammad asked ’Aisha for some food. Even the very first Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca under the leadership a .42 CHAPTER 5. and ’Aisha offered it to Muhammad. Thereupon Muhammad said: “I am observing fast. through which only those a who have fasted will be allowed to enter .” He said: “Bring that.

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

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

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

iz offered him had been fouled by many hands. we are told by J¯bir. pp. a Even Jehovah. nab¯ a soft drink. I would have drawn it along with you. That was his way of invoking a blessing on a well . Coming to the tribe of ’Abd al-Muttalib (also his own tribe). FASTING AND PILGRIMAGE (SAWM AND HAJJ) As Muhammad’s affluence increased. gives us one further detail which a a i. Because Isl¯m is so preponderantly Muhammadism. whose Temple was a veritable slaughterhouse. O Ban¯ ’Abd i al-Muttalib. his biographers tell us. were it not that people would usurp this right of supplying water from you. and not sacrifice” (Hosea 6:6). and the whole of Min¯ is a place of sacrifice. Then he gave the remaining number to ’Al¯ who sacrificed them . he said: “Draw water. the scale of his sacrifices also increased. he sacrificed sixty camels. and sacrificed sixty-three camels with his own hands. DRINK Muhammad also drank water from the well of Zamzam as part of the ritual. Many such wells are mentioned in the traditions (Tabaq¯t. . The orthodox pilgrims of every generation have continued the practice. then rinsed his mouth in the pitcher and directed that the water remaining in it should be thrown back into the well. . 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. 241-244). vol. Though the nab¯ iz. he sacrificed seventy camels at Hodeibia. “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). one of a the consequences of the Prophet’s offering sacrifices is that sacrificing has become a sacred institution in Isl¯m. and when it was cooked.46 CHAPTER 5. a He also did not forgo his favorite beverage. K¯tib al-W¯qid¯ the Prophet’s biographer. both of them [’Al¯ and i Muhammad] took some meat out of it and drank its soup. II. declining the offer of a cleaner and purer one. On his ’umrah pilgrimage in the sixth year. had declared that He “desired mercy. would be considered unhygienic by the impious. Muhammad said: “I have sacrificed the animals here. So they handed him a basket and he drank from it” (2803). but Muhammad’s All¯h a expresses no such sentiment.” To his followers. he took it.by spitting into it. so sacrifice your animals at your places” (2805). Muhammad took part of the content. . On a similar pilgrimage the next year. the God of the Jews. A little further on in the same had¯ we are told that Muhammad “then went to the place of is sacrifice. On the Farewell Pilgrimage in the tenth year. He then commanded that a piece of flesh from each i animal sacrificed should be put in a pot.

. . KA’BA CLOSED TO NON-MUSLIMS The Ka’ba. . Before leaving Mecca. He then called a for a barber and. 1 . let him shave him. 1 Most religions build houses or temples for their gods out of their own labor. Shaving should begin from the right side. Muslims were told that “when the sacred months are over. . kill the idolaters wherever you may find them. turning his right side to him. “After this year no polytheist may perform the Pilgrimage. and the h¯jji has himself a shaved and his nails pared and his pilgrim garment removed. All ah will enrich you from His grace . The ¯ ¯ relevant Qur anic verses are: “If you fear poverty. This was All¯h’s own command. Anas reports that All¯h’s Messenger “went to Jamra and threw pebbles at a it. which had been open to all in pre-Isl¯mic times. that “All ah is ¯ ¯ free from obligation to the idolaters and so is His Messenger. He then gave these hairs to the people” (2991). Any other house is a monument of imperialist greed and aggrandizement and is not acceptable to the gods of the purified spirit. 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. Fight against ¯ ¯ such of those who have been given the scripture and believe not in All ah . until they pay the tribute with willing submission and be as little ones” (9:28. after which he turned his left side. whether they were wora shippers of Al-L¯h or Al-L¯t.” it was declared on his behalf (3125). Lo! All ah is forgiving and merciful” ¯ (Qur an 9:5). he should again go round the Ka’ba seven times and throw stones at the satanic pillars at Min¯ seven times. The difference is striking. a Now the pilgrimage is over. Before a returning home.” Four months were given to them either to mend their ways or face death. and follow not the religion of ¯ truth. . but the pilgrim should spend another three days in Mecca to rest after the hectic four days of ceremony. the ceremony of pilgrimage concludes. and take them and besiege them. All¯h. from others. 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. . but Isl¯m a conquered one for its god. Muslims thought that if non-Muslims were disallowed to enter Mecca. he should go to Medina to pay his homage at the tomb of Muhammad. after which he went to his lodging in Min¯. The Qur¯n says: “O you who believe! a a those who ascribe partners to God are impure. p. But a “discharge” came to Muhammad from All ah absolving him from his side of the obligation. and sacrificed the animal. 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. and prepare for them each ambush . was closed to all except Muslims after Muhammad conquered a a Mecca. their trade would be ¯ affected. 29).” as Ibn Ish¯q tells us (S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. the hairs became important Isl¯mic relics. and so they shall not approach the sacred House of worship from this year onward” (9:28). 620).47 SHAVING: MUHAMMAD’S HAIR After the sacrifice.


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

vol. to Muhammad thus: “We joined her in marriage to thee. On that very day. I detested her. man or woman. but Muhammad. iya and she became the seventh wife of the Prophet. according to some authorities (Tabaq¯t. He set her ransom a price at nine ounces of gold.” All¯h told Muhammad: “Thou feared the a people. She poisoned the roasted lamb she was ordered to prepare for Muhammad. when Muhammad saw Juwair¯ iya he paid her ransom and took her for his wife. II. When Zaid heard about it. he captured Juwair¯ bint al-H¯ris” (4292). 252-255). “Retain thou in wedlock thy wife. She was captured in the fifth or sixth year of the Hijra along with two hundred other women. told him to keep his wife for himself.” He now also addressed Himself to the Muslims of all generations: “It is not fitting for a believer. and He revealed His plan.” And indeed. Zaid. and she was immediately put to death. when a matter has been decided by God and His Apostle to have any option about their decision. named Zainab. he offered to divorce her. p. ’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. and uncle killed. he is indeed clearly on a wrong path. There was another girl. He killed those who fought and imprisoned others. Juwair¯ was at that time about twenty. 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. Mustaliq. ¯ ¯ . If anyone disobeys God and His Apostle. who had seen her father. and therefore. He chided a a Muhammad for telling Zaid. and was aroused. she fell to the lot of S¯bit ibn Qays. “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. The whole story is given by Ibn Ish¯q. Muhammad spat out the very first morsel. Suspecting something wrong. as good as his own daughter-in-law.57 concubine. but it is more fitting that thou should fear God”. a 6 the Prophet’s biographer.” and for hiding in his heart “that which God was about to make manifest. husband. We shall touch upon this massacre again in our discussion of jih¯d. Muhammad went to her house when her husband was away. She was the wife of Muhammad’s adopted son.” 6 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. iya a In the division of the booty. beyond the power of her relatives to pay. for I knew that he [Muhammad] would see her as I saw her. a pp. again Jewish. was the daughter of the chief of the Banu’l iya. present and future. whose affair was not cruel but scandalous. 493. ZAINAB BINT JAHSH Here we shall mention another Zainab. He was saved. in the eyes of the Arabs. saw her in a state of seminudeness. a Juwair¯ another of these unfortunate girls. At this point All¯h spoke and decided the matter (Qur¯n 33:36-40). fearing a public scandal.

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

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

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

the famous verses descended on the Prophet. some of them centering round money. and by now only twenty-nine days had passed. the proper investigators would indeed know it” (Qur¯n 4:83.for your hearts have swerved! .61 on his face . All¯h.but if you back each other up against him.” 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.” Then Ab¯ Bakr “got up. and it was said. Once Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar went to Muhammad and found him “sitting sad and u silent with his wives around him. and the angels after that will back him up. when Muhammad lacked funds. The Holy Prophet “had taken an oath of remaining away from them [his wives] for a month. and ’Umar stood up and slapped Hafza” (3506). the month consists of twenty-nine days” (3507-3511). . “Why do you prohibit thyself what God a has made lawful to you. particularly ’Aisha and Hafza. These must have occurred in the early days at Medina. and they became his wives again. asking for extra money. and he laughed.” All¯h warned them. they broadcast it. in the following terms: “If ye both a turn repentant unto God. . and incorporating ’Umar’s assurance that all the angels and believers supported him: “O Prophet!” said All¯h. But if they had only referred it to the Apostle. the Prophet also gave his wives the option of a goodly departure if . On this occasion. ‘Enter the Fire with those who enter’ ” (Qur an 66:1-10). threatening his wives with divorce. or to those charged with authority among them. .” All¯h also told them that if they a misbehaved. He is the sovereign. 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.” 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. verily.” ’Umar narrates. being the Prophet’s wives would avail them nothing on the Day of Judgment. but they betrayed them: and they availed them nothing against God. freeing him from his oath respecting Mary.” He told the two fathers: “They [his wives and their daughters] are around me as you see. In this new mood.” ’Aisha mischievously reminded the Prophet that it was not yet one month but only twenty-nine days. and Gabriel. [but] he visited them. ¯ The matter blew over. craving to please thy wives? . to which Muhammad replied: “At times. “God strikes out a parable to those who misbelieve: the wife of Noah and the wife of Lot. . All¯h has already ordained for a you the dissolution of your oaths. a is OPTION OF DIVORCE DIFFERENT FROM DIVORCE It seems there were other occasions of domestic discord. had¯ 3507). they were under two of our righteous servants. and the righteous of the a believers. u went to ’Aisha and slapped her on the neck. .

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

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

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

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

and it also records the words of the prophet . .66 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 6. . He who innovates or gives protection to an innovator. . who thinks that we [the members of the Prophet’s family] read anything else besides the book. 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. 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. . there is a curse of All¯h and that of his angels a and that of the whole humanity upon him” (3601). This Sah¯ contains problems pertaining to the ages of the camels ifa and the recompense of injuries. ’Al¯ the Prophet’s son-in-law.

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


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).

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

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

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

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

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

” says J¯bir b. An ans¯r took the responsibility of suckling the infant and “she was a . Muhammad ordered him to be stoned to death. ’Abdullah. All¯h has ordained . Similarly. A fellow named M¯’iz came to Muhammad and told a him that he had committed adultery. In this sense. the Prophet means sexual lust and semen. with the lapse of time. She was spared till she had given birth to her child. he said quite emphatically: “I am afraid that. a branch of Azd. ‘We do not find the punishment of stoning in the Book of All¯h. Upon finding that the man was married and also not mad. ’Umar adds his own emphasis: “Verily All¯h sent Muhammad with truth and He sent a down the Book upon him. . “I was one of those who stoned him. Stoning is a duty laid down in All¯h’s Book for a a married men and women who commit adultery” (4194). SELF-CONFESSED ADULTERY There are some gruesome cases. He repeated his confession four times. is After this incident Muhammad harangued his followers: “Behold. When an unmarried male a commits adultery with an unmarried female. the a narrator of this had¯ (4196).’ and thus go astray by a abandoning this duty prescribed by All¯h. 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. I shall a certainly punish him” (4198).” ’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. And the punishment provided for both is one hundred stripes and not stoning to death as enjoined in the Sunn¯h for adultery.77 ADULTERY AND FORNICATION Adultery is severely punished. they should receive one hundred lashes and banishment for one year. and gave a small quantity of milk. Confessing four times stands for the four witnesses who are required to testify in case of adultery. ’Ub¯da reports the Prophet as saying: “Receive teaching a from me. . receive teaching from me. Therefore. though there is one for the larger category of zin¯. . came to Muhammad and told him a that she had become pregnant as a result of fornication. “The whore and the whoremonger. which means sexual intercourse a between parties not married to each other.” preaches the Qur¯n (24:2). the term includes adultery as well as fornication. in case I get hold of him. and the verse of stoning was included in what was sent down to him. one of you lagged behind and shrieked like the bleating of a a a male goat. By All¯h. the people may forget it and may say. a woman of Gh¯mid. The translator explains that by the metaphor of goat and milk. they shall receive one hundred lashes and be stoned to death” (4191). a Flog each of them with a hundred stripes. And in case of a married male committing adultery with a married female.

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

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

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

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


83 . seek All¯h’s help and fight them” (4294). 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. Then invite them to migrate from their lands to the land of Muh¯jirs [i. accept it from them a . do not embezzle the spoils. it was an imperialist urge masked in religious phraseology. ..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). . . If they refuse to migrate. living there was a sign of acceptance of Isl¯m and loyalty to Muhammad]. the jizy¯ a a a all beautifully and profitably interwoven. if they do so. a in the early days of Muhammad’s stay in Medina. but they will not get any share from the spoils of war or Fa’i a . if they respond to you. it is an intolerant idea: a tribal god. Fight against those who disbelieve in All¯h. demand from them the Jizy¯ . . By many authorities it is counted a a as one of the pillars of Isl¯m. 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. the spoils of war. If they refuse to a a pay the tax. they shall have all a the privileges and obligations of the Muh¯jirs. . .e. and inform them that. Theologically. Medina. Make a holy a a a war. All¯h. . If they refuse to accept Isl¯m. All¯h. .” He also told them to offer their enemies three options or courses of action: “Invite them to accept Isl¯m. . Historically. a a trying to be universal through conquest. . a Jih¯d is a divinely ordained institution in Isl¯m.

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

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

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

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

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

He also tells us that he acquired land in Khaibar that had belonged to the defeated Jews. Muhammad and the other Emigrants became rich enough to pay the ans¯rs for their help and gifts. whether slaves or women or property. He u ir. were confiscated by Muhammad. until the lands of Quraiz and Naz¯ were conquered. part of the spoils that accrued to him when the Jewish community there was defeated. . .” he says (4340). a but kept a large part for himself. They got a large number of camels as booty. he also had the first choice in everything. . distributed some of them among his Quraish followers. As a chief. Anas reports that after Muhammad’s a migration to Medina. and would spend what remained for purchasing horses and weapons as preparation for Jihad’ ” (4347). He also had seven other gardens in Medina. The properties of the exiled Ban¯ Naz¯ a Jewish tribe of Medina. “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. “a person placed at his [Muhammad’s] disposal some date-palms . Eleven or twelve camels came to the lot of every fighter and each one of them also got one extra camel” (4330). As the amount of war booty increased. ’Umar tells us: “The prophet sent an expedition a to Najd and I was among the troop. which according to some were bestowed on him by a Jew named Mukhayr¯ but iq. the Prophet received a fifth of all the spoils taken from the enemy. They were raided and captured and their property confiscated. u ir. So did the others. to the exclusion of the ans¯rs. These properties were particularly meant for the Holy Prophet. . Then he began to return to him ir whatever he had received” (4376). . MUHAMMAD’S SHARE In the distribution of the booty. ¯ One plot of land from the confiscated properties Muhammad turned into what is known as the “summer garden of Mary.” his Coptic slave-wife. he had properties at Khaibar. Spoils obtained without a battle went entirely to him. a property more valuable than anything he had ever possessed (4006). He would meet the annual expenditure of his family from the income thereof. 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). “When the Messenger of All¯h a had finished the war with the people . Khaibar was a populous valley inhabited by the Jews.89 after embracing Isl¯m.

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

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

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

and slaves. 4 Party after party they were thus led out. Tabari a i. strike high and hard. who under ’Al¯ orders a i’s beheaded the aged man. the son of Samuel?” a a asked the old man . from his share of these. “Mahomet made certain presents to his friends. He invited her to be his wife. indeed. who had saved some of his allies of the Bani Aus . chattels. Mahomet returned from the horrid spectacle to solace himself with the charms of Rih¯na. took his seat there. Having sated his revenge. it is sharp. and ’Al¯ and Zubair i did the killing in his presence. and then sent the rest of the women and children to be sold among the Bedouin tribes of Najd. . having refused marriage. and drenched the market-place with the blood of eight hundred victims. and gave him over to another. .of K¯b. “But what hath a become of all our chiefs . and having given command for the earth to be smoothed over their remains. an aged Jew.they had all been slain already . I entreat thee. One of his stories shows how Muhammad utilized local conflicts to his own advantage. and chose to remain (as. another biographer. provides some material a omitted in the other accounts.93 by the brink of the trench destined for its grave. . She also declined the summons to conversion and continued in the Jewish faith. till the whole were slain .”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 . a i.” 5 T ar¯ Tabar¯ vol.land. of Huwey.But slay me also. There were (besides little children. . of female slaves and servants. He replied. she had no alternative) his slave or concubine. pp. to the effect that Muhammad’s biographers. For Zoheir. S¯bit intervened and procured a pardon . His people loved him and said that his “face was like a Chinese mirror in which the virgins of the tribe could see themselves. . “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. but she declined. a Ka’b was one of the chiefs of the Quraiza. Tabar¯ and Mirkhond. The booty was divided into four classes . I. Here take my sword. Muhammad himself had “deep trenches dug up.” 5 Ibn Hish¯m. and therefore were u 4 The victims remained in the dark about their fate till the end. and butchered in cold blood. ¯ quotes W¯qid¯ an earlier biographer. 303-304. When a the men were being taken out in batches to the Apostle. He received to each inquiry the same reply . Ibn Ish¯q tells a touching story. . for he kept steadily in view the advantage of raising around him a body of efficient horses. of Ozz¯l. The two most important non-Jewish tribes of Medina were the Aus and the Ban¯ Khazraj. . they asked Ka’b what he thought would be done with them.” “This went on until the Apostle made an end of ¯ them.” The whole story in all its gruesomeness is narrated by Ibn Ish¯q.” Ibn Ish¯q adds. cattle. ¯ ikh i.” S¯bit refused. in exchange for horses and arms. . and Muhammad took a fifth of each. . and there beheaded. whose husband and all whose male relatives had just a perished in the massacre. . The Quraiza were allied to the Aus. who were counted with their mothers) a thousand captives. . .

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

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

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

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

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

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

are held in very high esteem and their persons are considered sacred. The present-day Sauds. necessary foundations. may one day revive this idea. emerged in Egypt. Later. This principle has been held very high in the Muslim world. who happens to acquire some kind of control over the affairs of my people and is hard upon them . though the center of power of Isl¯m shifted from a Mecca to Damascus to Baghdad. There can be no Arab Caliphate (a euphemism for Arab imperialism) without Muslim fundamentalism.” Muhammad says (4476).100 ¯ CHAPTER 10. and the disbelievers among them. “people are the followers of Quraish in good as well as evil” (4475).” Muhammad prays to All¯h (4494). strengthening fundamentalism and pan-Isl¯mism. and buying up political support in Muslim countries and among a Muslim populations. GOVERNMENT (AL-IM ARA) among them being subservient to the Muslims among them. for six hundred years. though the Shias limit the office still further to the descendants of Muhammad. financial tycoons. rulers. the Arabian Quraish became a most durable caste with not many parallels in history. Then it passed on to the Turkish Sult¯n Usm¯n (A. shorn of temporal power yet still Quraish. put to death the last Khal¯ at Baghdad. who are supposed to be descendants of the Prophet. the Saiyids.” says Muhammad (4473-4474). and i. 1299-1326). D. and specifically to the branch descended from ’Al¯ the Prophet’s cousin and son-in-law. “O God.be Thou hard upon him. Successor of the a a Apostle of God. 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. a As a result. helped by petrodollars. his wife F¯tima.be Thou kind to him. the holy lands of Isl¯m). a . and scholars. Thanks to Muhammad. ¯ ONLY A QURAISH MAY BE KHAL IFA “The Caliphate will remain among the Quraish even if only two persons are left on the earth. Muslim fundamentalism feeds pan-Isl¯mism under the a Arab aegis. being subservient to the unbelievers among them. and Ruler of the Faithful. the a grandson of Genghis Khan. the Caliphate remained with the Quraish till Hal¯ku. In another version. At present they are busy laying the first. who added to his many titles three others: a a Protector of the Two Lands (al-Hij¯z and Syria. A branch of them. They were warriors. RULERS Isl¯mic rulers should be just to the ummah and follow Muhammad’s shar¯ a i’ah faithfully. a shadowy ifa Caliphate. the Prophet’s daughter. and he who acquires control over the affairs of my people and is kind to them .

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

a single leader in order to ensure solidarity. There will be among them men who will have the hearts of devils in the bodies of human beings. 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). Shiaism. you should kill him who seeks to undermine your solidarity or disrupt your unity” (4567). These include not ¯ a only its administrators but its divines. 3. then the deciding vote would be that of ’Abdullah b. 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 the dissenter should immediately be killed. GOVERNMENT (AL-IM ARA) 2. p. 68. 1 All four points are taken from S. 4. you should listen and obey” (4554). ¯ CHAPTER 10. men of authority. “Kill him.” enjoins the next had¯ Hold on to is. Muhammad says: “You will listen to the Am¯ [ruler] and carry out his orders. Ghaffari. If any five of them agree on one man and the sixth disagrees. “When you are holding to one single man as your leader. A crisis psychology indispensable for any dictatorship.” 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). If there is an equal division. In those days “there will be leaders who will not be led by my guidance and will not adopt my ways. ’Umar. If any four of them agree on one person and two disagree. even if your back is flogged ir and your wealth is snatched. his own son and one of the electors. answering a follower. then those two should be killed.” Under the circumstances.102 Khal¯ ifa.

You are to guard against them” (4483). and this time he was accepted. Similarly. nocturnal emission. “Lands shall be thrown open to you and All¯h would suffice you. he went to fight in the Battle of Khandaq. there will appear a number of impostors. “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 THE AGE OF MAJORITY Let us take up one or two more small items before we turn to jih¯d. the puberty of a girl is established by menstruation. or pregnancy (note 2331). such as nocturnal emission and his capacity for impregnation. strength consists in a is archery. That decided the issue.103 There is also a warning not only against schismatics and innovators but also against false prophets. which is also an a important subject of this book. But the translator tells us that in Isl¯mic law the age of majority differs with different a conditions and circumstances. The translator assures us that it was not a horse race used for betting as in modern times. In a book on government containing 358 ah¯d¯ 92 are on jiha a is. the puberty of a boy is established by other criteria. The next year. One of fifteen years is considered an adult. ad and muj¯hids (crusaders) and martyrs. Yet again. a is Muhammad used to have a horse race between two particular points six miles apart. For example. Again. This is understandable. “Beware. and one below fifteen is a minor (4605). but none of you should give up a playing with his arrows” (4712). There are also some ah¯d¯ on archery (4711-4714). among them two on horse racing (4610-4611). “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).” Muhammad repeated thrice in a sermon from the pulpit (4711). for purposes of marriage. when he was fifteen. Is not Muhammad the final prophet? But “before the Day of Judgment. The son of ’Umar went to fight in the Battle of Uhud when he was fourteen. for jih¯d is central to ¯ a a . HORSES AND ARCHERY There are sixteen ah¯d¯ on horses. but the Prophet did not accept him. ¯ JIHAD Jih¯d appears again.

104 ¯ CHAPTER 10. but its smell would be smell of musk” (4630). there is no Isl¯m. Jih¯d for the spread of Isl¯m is most meritorious and the easiest gateway to Paradise. 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. After a the conquest of Mecca. 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. “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 . and motivated soldiers of Isl¯m. All lands not belonging to the territory of Isl¯m ¯ a (d¯r al-isl¯m) must be conquered by the Muslims. “I love to fight in the . . when you are asked to set out [on an expedition under-taken for the cause of Isl¯m] you should [readily] do so” (4597).” Muhammad tells his followers (4314). there must have been a rush of people wanting to become Muslims.” In fact. The proof of a sincere conversion was no longer migration but jih¯d. 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). Jiha a a a ad is a religious duty of a Muslim state. and the colour [of its discharge] will be the colour of blood. a ¯ JIHAD AS PROOF OF TRUE CONVERSION After Muhammad migrated to Medina from Mecca. Having no home and no livelihood. a a “Paradise is under the shadows of the swords. but since this is not always practical. if he dies in the Way of All¯h. but only Jih¯d and sincerity a of purpose. “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. one campaign at least must be undertaken against the unbelievers every year. Muhammad told someone a who intended to settle in Medina: “There is no Hijra now. But it is left to the discretion of the im¯m to decide when the attack a a should begin. . “Think not of those who are slain in All¯h’s way as dead. GOVERNMENT (AL-IM ARA) Isl¯m and muj¯hids are its Army of Liberation. Without jih¯d. they became desperate. and being uprooted from their old loyalties. So the rules were changed.” 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). when the power of Muhammad was fully vindicated. Muhammad had the same desire for himself. and are therefore called the “territory a a of war” (d¯r al-harb). his body will not decay. They eat the fruits of Paradise from wherever they like. According to some fiqh schools.

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

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

Give them time to separate. Homely wisdom. And the result: “they both found their wives with other men. is . One interpretation is that the muj¯hids have been away so long that their return is not expected. and thus their a wives may be with their paramours.” according to Ibn ’Abbas (Tirmiz¯ vol. II.107 to Medina and were going to enter our houses. let them not be taken by surprise. 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. and a woman whose husband has been away may have removed the hair from her private parts’ ” (4727). had¯ 571). i. In such instances. 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). and let there be no avoidable breaking of homes. Two men did not heed this command.


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

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

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

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

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

DRINKS The twenty-first book is the “Book of Drinks” (Ashriba). Hamza and “he is in this i house dead drunk in the company of the Ans¯rs with a singing girl. the Prophet’s uncle. and came out” (4881). FOOD AND DRINK down on their sides eat of them . Many ah¯d¯ in this book show Ab¯ Talha.” a ’Al¯ reported the matter to Muhammad. . Ka’b drinking. The worst case is that of Hamza a u b. “There fell to my lot a she-camel out of the spoils of war on the day of Badr. We realize that this unregenerate piety is not good enough. Ab¯ Duj¯na. In animal sacrifice. he found their “humps were chopped off and their haunches had been cut off and their livers had been taken out. esting story. a POT AND PIETY On the ordinary level of consciousness on which religions operate. a is u u u u a a Sahil b. Mu’¯z b. We offer to our gods what we ourselves eat. all liquors in the various stages of fermentation. and then lifted his eyes and cast a glance at his waist and then lifted his eyes and saw his face. people said. . Ab¯ Ubaida. Ab¯ Ayy¯b.” When ’Al¯ asked who had done this. Muhammad forbade all intoxicating liquors. the flesh comes to us. there is nothing exceptionable in the Muslim institution of sacrifice. 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 seems that the habit of drinking was quite popular with the Companions of Muhammad. And then Hamza said: ‘Are you anything but the slaves of my father?’ All¯h’s Messenger came to know that he was intoxicated. that you may be grateful” (Qur¯n 22:36).114 CHAPTER 11. a and he thus turned upon his heels. narrates an interi. ’Abd al-Muttalib. a a Let it be so if you like. “It is not their meat nor their blood. it is your piety” (Qur¯n 22:37). 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]. and Ubayy b. a new reverence for all living beings. and he a i a brought his camels along. . but when he returned. He cast a glance at All¯h’s a Messenger and then looked towards his knees. He tied them up outside. and we like to believe that the piety of the act (whatever it may be) goes to God. Baiad¯. “Hamza’s eyes were red. ’Al¯ the Prophet’s son-in-law. that reaches All¯h. But when a deeper consciousness dawns. We experience a new togetherness. . We made animals subject to you. Liquor was forbidden.” Some business took ’Al¯ to the house of an ans¯r. all this changes. and began to reprimand him. went to where Hamza i was. Jabal. HUNTING.

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

Anas reports: “I saw All¯h’s Messenger going after the pumpkin a round the dish. a man should eat with thankfulness in his heart-thanks for the gods that reside in his food. and cooks who lovingly cooked it and served it. sisters and wives. and he licked a his hand before wiping it” (5040). thanks for the farmer who produced it. PUMPKINS AND CUCUMBERS It is meritorious to eat pumpkin (5067-5069) and also cucumber with dates. one “must vomit” (5022). Still. In fact. thanks for the elements that have gone into making it. ’Abdullah b. so I have always liked the pumpkin since that day” (5067). he ate it and if he did not like it. because Muhammad did so (5072). he left it” (5121). for feeding 130 persons (5105). and thanks for the mothers. It is also meritorious to lick one’s fingers after taking one’s food. HUNTING. 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). if one drinks water standing. 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). DO NOT FIND FAULT Do not find fault with the food served to you. FOOD AND DRINK One should not drink water while standing (5017-5022). with the blessing of the Prophet. A laudable practice.116 CHAPTER 11. In ordinary course. 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). It is said about the Prophet that “if he liked anything. . GARLIC Muhammad himself did not eat garlic because of its odor (5097). it should be avoided when one has to talk to eminent persons. The roasted a liver of one sheep and two cups containing soup and meat suffice. Ka’b reports that “the Messenger of All¯h used to eat food with three fingers. but it is permissible for other Muslims. a MIRACULOUS FEEDING Miraculous feeding after the fashion of Jesus is repeated in Isl¯m too.

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


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

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

iya Muhammad said that the dearest names to All¯h are Subh¯n All¯h (“Hallowed be All a a a ah”). and N¯fi a a a (“beneficial”) (5327). He said that ugly personal names should be replaced with good ones (5332-5334). he “would have never slept with her in the bed. 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).” 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). ¯ PERSONAL NAMES Curiously. Barra means “pious.121 FALSE HAIR AND FACIAL CULTURE Some of Muhammad’s prohibitions relate to practices which are surprisingly modern. ’Abdullah. Rab¯h (“profit”). having a part of a boy’s head shaved and leaving a part unshaven. a . But he also changed the name of one of his wives ila from Barra to Juwair¯ (5334). tells us that if he found any of these things in his wife. those who pluck hair from their faces and those who make spaces between their teeth for beautification changing what God has created” (5301). This may have been an old ritualistic practice or a thoughtless current fashion (5289-5292). The Prophet “cursed the woman who adds false hair and the woman who asks for it” (5298).. We are also told that “All¯h has cursed those women who tattooed and who have a themselves been tattooed. the son of ’Umar.” So is the appela a lation Shahinsh¯h. “The vilest name in All¯h’s sight is Malik al-Aml¯k (king of kings).e. i. or to pluck their eyebrows (5295-5309).” and it is a perfectly good name. Muhammad took great a interest in this matter. having the same meaning (5338). Muhammad also disapproved of qaza. and al-Hamidulill¯h (“praise be to All¯h”) (5329). the book on Ad¯b starts with personal names. He forbade women to add false hair to their head. But he forbade giving the following ¯ a a four names to servants: Aflah (“successful”). Yas¯r (“wealth”). He changed the name of ’Umar’s daughter ’Asiya (“disobedient”) to Jam¯ (“good and handsome”) (5332).

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

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

She poisoned the mutton she was asked to cook for Muhammad. he believed that he himself had once been put under a spell by a Jew and his daughters. As the knots were untied. 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 . CLOTHING. the Prophet also seeks refuge “from the mischief of darkness as it u overspreads. you should take a bath” (5427).” A bath is prescribed as its remedy. its [the well’s] water was yellow like henna a and its trees [i.” 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. vol. but the poison had a delayed effect. practice the secret art of casting spells]” (Qur¯n S¯ra 113). or. GREETINGS.e. in the language of Ibn Ish¯q. of course. those who had brought it about. DECORATIONS. Muhammad also believed in witchcraft. medicine.e. but. the trees around the well] were like heads of the devils” (5428).” a Muhammad sent his men there and they found it at the very spot revealed by the angels. MAGIC. tied in eleven knots around a palm branch. He sought “refuge with the Lord of the Dawn from the mischief of women who blow on knots [i. the Prophet got well. 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. and incantations. poisons. This saved him for the time being. 156. ¯ . a Jewish woman gave Muhammad poisoned mutton. it had no power over him (5430). I.. he also felt “that he had been doing something whereas in fact he had not been doing that. 1 Tabaq at. He had just taken a morsel and finding the taste unusual spat it out.” But two angels came and revealed everything: the nature of the sickness. and the way they did it. Muhammad told ’Aisha: “ ’Aisha. it caused his last illness.” The angels explained that hairs combed from the head of the Prophet had been stolen.[and that it was] in the well of Zi Arw¯n.” and that “it was Lab¯ b. p.124CHAPTER 12. During this period. and deposited at the bottom of a well. GENERAL BEHAVIOR. A’sam id [who cast the spell]. and according to some traditions. “could not come at his wives. 1 On another occasion. spells. a is The Prophet believed that “the influence of an evil eye is a fact.” a And under the influence of the charm. The angels told Muhammad that “the spell has affected him. “When you are asked to take a bath from the influence of an evil eye. POE MAGIC AND SPELLS With rather slovenly classification. the “Book of Salutations and Greetings” also contains many ah¯d¯ on magic. by All¯h. In fact. he lost his appetite and even became impotent. a u In the same S¯ra..

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

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

the jinn has his chance. but they alloy it with lies and make additions to it” (5538). Then the angels supporting the Throne sing His glory.” She asked him: “I find people being happy when they see the dark cloud in the hope that it would bring rain. I am afraid that there may be a calamity in it. 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. 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. Like snakes. If they narrate which they manage to snatch that is correct. The snatching of the heavenly news by the jinn is referred to in several places in the Qur¯n. the Exalted and the Glorious. S¯ff¯t (37:7-10).127 this belief and provided another explanation. had¯ 1963). next come the “dwellers of the heaven”. and Jinn (72:8-10).” So they too should be killed (5545). It seems that Muhammad believed in the hierarchy of angels. the signs of fear were depicted on his face. 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. The interested reader may look up the S uras Hijr (15:16-18). In this process of transmission the jinn snatches what he manages to overhear and he carries it to his friends. First in rank are the “supporters of the Throne”. a is SNAKES. 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.” When these different orders communicate with each other. ANTS. dogs too “cause miscarriage and affect the eyesight adversely.’ but were destroyed by it” (Qur¯n 46:24. issues a Command when He decides to do a thing. Muhammad explains: “All¯h. the third group lives in the “heaven of the world. ’Aisha tells us that when he “saw dark clouds or wind. CATS ’Aisha reports that the Prophet “commanded the killing of a snake having stripes over it. . Their sight filled him with fear. His view is a little complicated but worth quoting. but I find that when you see that [the cloud] there is an anxiety on your face. Then the dwellers of heaven of the world seek information from them until this information reaches the heaven of the world. for it affects eyesight and miscarries pregnancy” (5542).” He replied: “ ’Aisha. And when the angels see the jinn they attack them with meteors. a ¯ a a Mulk (67:5). 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.

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

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

Another had¯ tells us that after he was granted a victory at Hunain by All¯h. the is a Prophet gave one hundred camels to Safw¯n b. ADULATION The book also tells us what Muhammad’s followers thought of him. He promised someone: “In case we get wealth from Bahrain. who was the Prophet’s servant for nine or ten ¯ is years. however. I counted them as five hundred dinars and he [Ab¯ u Bakr] said: Here is double of this for you. “He a went back to his people and said: My people. I would give you so much. It gives many ahad¯ on this subject. embrace Isl¯m. Ab¯ Bakr gave the man a handful u of coins. . many of them by Anas. but when it did. “He asked me to count them.” The Prophet died before the wealth arrived from Bahrain. “He [Muhammad] was the most detested person amongst people in my eyes. But he continued giving to me until now he is the dearest of people to me. a Anas says that the Prophet never failed to give when “asked for anything in the name of Isl¯m. 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). most courageous.” the beneficiary tells us (5731). 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). “sublimest among people and the most generous amongst them and he was the bravest of men” (5715-5717).” the recipient said (5730). provided it was no sin” (5752). He found Muhammad most valorous. The man was overwhelmed. ’Aisha.” But when God intends to cause destruction to an ummah. This was called his charitable disposition.133 A PROPHET’S DOUBLE ROLE When an ummah is safe from the wrath of God. He calls back his Messenger as “a harbinger and recompense in the world to come. Ummaya. Muhammad’s promises of booty were fulfilled even posthumously. tells us that whenever the Prophet “had to choose between two things he adopted the easier one. He punishes it through His living Apostle.” A person came and Muhammad gave him a large flock of sheep and goats. He then gave him another a hundred and yet another hundred. for Muhammad gives so much a charity as if he has no fear of want” (5728). 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.

” Muhammad tells his faithful followers. The Prophet’s body was soft. 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.” His body a was also fragrant. The m ulfat qul ub are nominal ¯ ¯ Muslims. eyes. “He put on a red mantle over him. for I give property to the M ulfat Qul ub. She told Muhammad: “That is your sweat which we mix in our perfume and it becomes the most fragrant perfume” (5761). 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. Rob Peter to pay Paul. or what Mahatma Gandhi calls in another context “rice Christians”. THE PROPHET’S APPEARANCE Al-Bar¯ says that Muhammad was “neither very tall nor short-statured” (5771). Anas “never touched brocade or silk and found it as soft as the body of All¯h’s Messenger” (5759). One is called jih¯d. ¯ ¯ according to a tradition quoted in Mirkhond’s Persian biography of the Prophet. The hair grew in the lobes of his ears. This is done in order “to rivet their hearts to faith” more securely. or charity. In the prophetic theology both acts are meritorious.134 CHAPTER 13. a THE PROPHET’S HAIR There are many ah¯d¯ on the Prophet’s hair. hair. a is complexion. the oil-rich sheikhs are following a holy and hoary tradition. appearance. and even heels. His perspiration “shone like pearls. MUHAMMAD ON MUHAMMAD Even prophets are not above using material inducements to win converts. and never have I seen anyone more handsome than All¯h’s Apostle” (5770). a is He used to part his hair. He a also found his face very handsome. “Do not be angry. Anas “never smelt musk or ambergris and found its fragrance as sweet as the fragrance of All¯h’s Messenger” (5760). so All- . His mother collected the Prophet’s sweat a in a bottle. the other sadaqa. they are convinced by more palpable economic and political advantages. In their new mission work in India and other countries of Asia and Africa. a THE PROPHET’S BODILY CHARACTERISTICS: FRAGRANCE There are many ah¯d¯ about the Prophet’s bodily characteristics: his face.

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

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

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

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

and some loyal ans¯rs and ija. whom Muhammad betrothed when she was six and married when she was nine. 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. Salama. Ab¯ Bakr became Isl¯m’s first Khal¯ u a ifa after Muhammad. and Zainab. his wives like Khad¯ ’Aisha. It praises Muhammad’s “Companions. ’Al¯ Hasan.” Muhammad said u a (5873). “the father of the maiden. D. ¯ THE MERITS OF ABU BAKR SIDD¯ IQ The original name of Ab¯ Bakr Sidd¯ was ’Abdu’l Ka’bah.” his lieutenants and relatives ¯ like Ab¯ Bakr.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. but he soon came to be known by another name. and u a a i. faith and loyalty to the leader are the supreme virtues. he answered: “ ’Aisha.” the maiden being ’Aisha. In totalitarian ideologies and creeds. Muhammad changed his u iq name to ’Abdu’llah Ibn Ab¯ Quh¯fa. members of his family like F¯tima. ’Aisha’s 139 . Muhammad had a high regard for Ab¯ Bakr’s services. Husain. it is enough to be subservient. When Muhammad was asked whom he loved best. To be saved. “If I were to choose as my bosom u friend I would have chosen the son of Ab¯ Quh¯fa as my bosom friend. a other men associated with events and occasions important in the eyes of the Muslims of the days of the Prophet. and ’Usm¯n. Ab¯ i a u Bakr. ’Umar. 628 (those who took this oath were a promised by Muhammad that they would never enter the fire of hell). like the Battle of Badr and the “Oath of Allegiance under the Tree” (Bay’at al-Rizw¯n) at Hodeibia in March A. The followers need have no other.

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

Once Muhammad was persuaded to offer a funeral prayer for someone whom the Muslims called a hypocrite.” and shown how the divine injunction merely corroborated what ’Umar already stood for. the place of the Jewish Temple. Isl¯m carried its a a hatred of its enemies even beyond the grave. 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. And lo. the direction was changed to Mecca. Muhammad accepted Bakr’s advice in this particular case. “My Lord concorded with my Judgments on three occasions. Once. by a divine injunction. Bakr had advised that they be freed for ransom. narrow-minded. Badr” (5903). I went u u out and there went out too Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar. I entered and there entered too Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar. . . “I came and there came a u too Ab¯ Bakr and ’Umar. The first instance refers to the fact that Muhammad and his followers prayed facing Jerusalem. and strong in his hatred. “Could I at all feel any jealousy about you?” he said to Muhammad (5898). while asleep. ’Umar. nor stand at his grave. ’Umar was fanatical. . u ’Umar was loyal to Muhammad. one of whom was the Prophet’s uncle. as he prayed. but All¯h concorded a with the general approach of ’Umar. however. are a a you going to offer prayer. during the first fifteen months of their stay in Medina. and in case of the prisoners of a im. KHATTAB ’Umar b. Had it not been for a previous . whereas All¯h has forbidden to offer prayer for him?” (5904). and died in a state of perverse rebellion” (Qur¯n 9:84). for they rejected God and His Apostle. he was told that it (it is not clear whether it stands for the woman or the palace or both) was for ’Umar. ’Umar “caught hold of the clothes of All¯h’s Messenger and said: All¯h’s Messenger. Muhammad found himself “in Paradise and a woman performing ablution by the side of a palace. 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 . modestly mentions a only three. ’Abb¯s. In fact All¯h vindicated ’Umar more than once.” Muhammad observed (5885). a course which ’Umar had advocated even earlier. and ’Umar that they be a killed. ’Umar wept when he was told about it. We have already recounted the incident about the veil in our discussion of the “Book of Salutations and Greetings. So Muhammad thought of ’Umar’s feelings and turned back and went away.141 ¯ THE EXCELLENT QUALITIES OF ’UMAR B. The Muslim doctors mention fifty cases a in which ’Umar’s ideas became Qur¯nic revelations. The third incident refers to the Quraish prisoners. Later on. In fact. All¯h revealed the following verse: “Nor a do thou ever pray for one of them that dies.” When he inquired. a But Muhammad persisted. In case of the Station of Ibr¯h¯ in case of the observance of the veil. ’Khatt¯b and Ab¯ Bakr were an inseparable pair.

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

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

. ’Aisha reports that the Prophet would receive Bakr and ’Umar while lying in bed with his thigh or his shank uncovered. “O All¯h. it was complained that he shirked manual work while one ’Amm¯r. There is another interesting had¯ given under this head. whereupon he said: Open it for him and give him glad tidings of Paradise and lo. am leaving behind you two weighty things: . therefore. with great ingenuity. “Should I not show modesty to one whom even the Angels show modesty” (5906). . 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). Hasan. the order of truth it deals with. in the tradition of many other Muslim Khal¯ ifas. Another had¯ tells us whom Muhammad regarded as his family and. I remind you of your duties to the members of my family. a convert from the proletarian strata. [and] the members of a my household. it was Ab¯ Bakr.” Other doctors of theology and law. a a family. is such that it excluded . the Book of All¯h . reclining against a pillow . was a burdened with work that was too heavy. Muhammad had said: “Let us summon our children and your children.144 CHAPTER 14. is receiving a visitor.” or “people of the house” (ahlul-bait).” he said (5915). In a mubahala (trial by prayer and curses) with the Christians. Ab¯ Talib was the cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad. Here we have in one had¯ the trinity of successive Khal¯ is ifas with the promise of Paradise in store for each. one can get the feel of Isl¯mic scholarship at work. From the arguments advanced on both sides. But when ’Usm¯n came. “the thigh of a person is not that part of the body which should be necessarily covered. THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS went to Medina and built their mosque with voluntary labor. they are my i. ’ALI B. and its way of arriving a at truth. . AB¯ TALIB I ’Al¯ b.” ’Umar and ’Usm¯n also visited the Prophet u a under the same circumstances and received the same tidings (5909).a person came asking for the gate to be opened. as the is rightful heirs of at least his secular powers. and Husain. It can be subtle about nothing[s]. ’Usm¯n became the third Khal¯ of Isl¯m and a ifa a died.” The definition of “the members of my family. at the hands of his brethren in faith.” For his part the Prophet called ’Al¯ F¯tima. According to another had¯ almost on his deathbed Muhammad told the believers: “I is. . he arranged his clothes and a covered his thigh and shank. did not agree with this conclusion. saying. From this had¯ some Muslim doctors have derived a rule of decorum that when one is. and its concerns are mostly with trifles. 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. “All¯h’s Messenger was in is a one of the gardens of Medina [he had seven].

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

Muhammad saw Zaid’s wife half-uncovered and felt a great attraction for her. pp. On that day ’Al¯ and Zubair were till the evening engaged in slaying the i Ban¯ Quraiz. and when the night set in. ’Al¯ and Zubair set about striking off their heads. AB¯ WAQQAS I Sa’d b. This was facilitated by the descent of a revelation from the High Heaven (Qur¯n a 33:36-40). Zaid was socially known as the son of Muhammad. After he was appointed to this responsibility. He worked as a doorman or sentinel for Muhammad during the night. 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. a Sa’d was also the impetus for several Qur¯nic verses. But the most gruesome case was that of the captives of the Ban¯ Quraiza. and as they [the prisoners] were brought out in squads . Though the whole matter caused a great scandal. . His mother a took an oath that “she would never talk with him until he abandoned his faith. 477-478. he again began to be called by the name of his 10 ibid. eight hundred strong.” Mirkhond records in his Persian biography of the Prophet. 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.. . 10 ¯ SA’D B. ’Aisha tells us. is THE MERITS OF ZAID B.” This. the lamp of life of those who yet remained [to be i executed] was extinguished by torchlight. who were all beheaded in a single u day in the market of Medina by ’Al¯ and Zubair (see above p. 112). ’Al¯ was often chosen to execute them. had¯ 5933). While i Muhammad awarded the punishments. Haris was the adopted son of Muhammad and participated in most of his expeditions. We give one example. was the old polytheistic morality. he was also his executioner. . “All¯h’s Messenger slept such a sound sleep that I heard the noise of his snoring” (5925). “The apostle of God i ordered a trench to be dug in a suitable place. by order of his lordship i the apostle . . THE PROPHET’S COMPANIONS ’Al¯ was not only Muhammad’s best general. . . following the old Arab custom. Until now. he got Zaid to divorce her and married her. HARIS Zaid b. he also beheaded people on the orders of the Apostle (6676). He was i asked to flog people found guilty of drinking (4231) or of fornication (4225). Ab¯ Waqq¯s joined Muhammad when he was only thirteen and accompanied i a him on almost all his campaigns. obey them not” (29:8. but after this marriage. however. He was one of those ten men who had been promised Paradise during their own lifetime by Muhammad.146 CHAPTER 14.

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

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

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

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

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. tells us a story which is narrated by Ibn a Ish¯q and repeated by Tabar¯ On the day of the Battle of Badr. saw that he might have a chance of saving his life if he fell into the hands of ’Abdul-Rahm¯n as a prisoner. 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). he was treacherous and a fanatical sadist. “O ’Abdul-Rahm¯n. “Yes. for I am more valuable than the coats of mail which you 15 ibid. he said. p. Since the Arab custom allowed manumission. Consistent with his lowly position. Mu’az. 15 a The conspiracy to murder Ka’b ibn Ashraf. Khalaf. Seen through less-believing a eyes. . a We are glad that Bil¯l escaped his alleged persecution. he was guarding Muhammad’s hut along with some other ans¯rs. We would have skipped over him altogether but for the fact that he exemplifies a certain moral.” he said. Umayya b.” he replied.151 embraced Isl¯m at Medina after the first pledge at Al-’Aqaba. 301. according to a tradition quoted by Ibn Ish¯q. it is the first defeat that God brought on the infidel and I would rather see them slaughtered than left alive. he “had looted. 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 “won’t you take me a prisoner. a carrying coats of mail” which. Khalaf and his son.. the Aus. “By God. but what does this “conversion a to Isl¯m” mean? Did he become a better man? Did he became more forgiving. u B¯ AL IL ¯ One night Muhammad heard the sound of Bil¯l’s steps before him in Paradise. the poet. in Mecca. a ’Abdul-Rahm¯n. He also played a prominent part in causing the slaughter of eight hundred men of the Ban¯ Quraiza.” Muhammad said to him. the erstwhile allies of his own tribe.” Just at that time he encountered his old friend Umayya b. He was an Abyssinian slave who was persecuted by his master. more kind a and compassionate. was worked out in consultation with Sa’d b. he asked him to narrate the act by which he hoped to receive such a good reward. he was ransomed by Ab¯ Bakr and then converted u to Isl¯m. an important Companion. who belonged to the routed army of the Quraish. He watched with displeasure a as the Muslim soldiers laid their hands on the prisoners. “You seem to dislike what the people are doing. The next a day.” he added. ’Abdul-Rahm¯n “was a i. a state which would give him protection and from which a he could be redeemed by paying an appropriate ransom. On the day of the Battle of Badr. Umayya.

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

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

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

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

OTHER VIRTUES Charity and forgiveness are recommended (6264). KNOWLEDGE. 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). and holy war was allowed by a some believers toward the nonbelievers too. and he who did not expose the follies of a Muslim. “A Muslim is the brother of a fellow-Muslim. “When any one of you fights with his brother. Therefore a Muslim should not oppress another Muslim and. as the Prophet himself explains. NONVIOLENCE Nonviolence of a sort is also preached. When Hish¯m saw “the farmers of Syria. in fact. and he who meets the need of a brother. It is meritorious to speak the truth. REMEMBRANCE OF GOD body aches with fever and sleeplessness” (6260). But lying is permissible in three cases: “In battle. for “truth leads one to Paradise” (6307). VIRTUE. and he who relieves a Muslim from hardship. All¯h would relieve him from a hardships to which he would be put on the Day of Resurrection. a SUBJECT PEOPLE Such benevolence as is compatible with jizy¯. spoils. he should take care of their “pointed heads so that these might not do any harm to a Muslim” (6332). 1 . a Similarly. if a man goes to a bazaar or a mosque with arrows. He should neither commit oppression upon him nor ruin him. All¯h would conceal his follies on the Day of Resurrection” (6250). 6265. All¯h would a meet his needs. and the narration of the words of a wife to her husband” (6303). “All¯h created Adam in His own image” (2872). RETRIBUTION If we could forget All¯h’s partiality for Muslims. turn to him the other also” (Matthew 5:39). 1 The face should be avoided because. DESTINY. he should spare his face” (6325). who a This is the nearest we have from Muhammad to Jesus’ teaching: “Whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek. should help him. for bringing reconciliation amongst persons and the narration of the words of the husband to his wife. and 6306). Abuse and backbiting and talecarrying are censured (6263.156 CHAPTER 15.

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

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

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

” They heard that “there had fallen to the lot of All¯h’s a Apostle some prisoners of war. Why ninety-nine? “God is odd [witr] and He loves odd numbers. In the prophetic tradition. Muhammad’s god. conquest. in brotherliness. “walking toward Me” means walking in truth. ¯ RECITING ALLAH’S NAME BEFORE GOING TO SLEEP ’Al¯ tells us that F¯tima. I rush towards him” (6471). in compassion. they are tearful about God but are quite dry-eyed and even cruel-hearted toward their fellow mortals. like his moral teaching. is sectarian and lacks both universality and true inwardness.” So F¯tima came to the Holy Prophet in the expectation a . In the mystic tradition. ¯ REMEMBRANCE OF ALLAH The thirty-third book is on “Remembrance of All¯h” (Kit¯b al-Zikr). I draw near him a by the cubit. where it has a meaning very different from the one given to it in certain prophetic traditions. And if he walks towards Me. The statement is taken from the mystic lore.163 away the scholars” (6462). 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). Muhammad’s All¯h is a tribal god trying to be universal through jiha ad. In this holy war which we are asked to wage with zeal. Our own role a is compliance and conformity and obedience to a revelation which is not ours. his wife and the Prophet’s daughter. “There are ninety-nine a names of All¯h. the infidels. We should be wary of such theologians and their theologies. the phrase means walking in enmity toward the polytheists. and earnestness. in conformity to the commands conveyed by All¯h through revelation to some favored fellow. slaves. he retained His audible names. he who commits them to memory would get into Paradise. in purity. in conciliation. Some theologians ‘exalt’ God but denigrate man. faith. it means walking toward the Light within.” Muhammad a tells us (6475). in wisdom. and Paradise if we fall. polytheist. and empire if we succeed. and so on. a a The believers are exhorted to remember All¯h. “had a corn in her hand i a because of working at the hand-mill. and forced conversions. infidel. Muhammad explains” (6476). our reward is booty. 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. Though Muhammad rebelled against a the idea that All¯h had visible forms.

one to ’Usm¯n. and the second to ’Umar. the daughter of Hil¯l. For example. The Prophet was a in the habit of giving prisoners of war to his favorite believers as slaves and concubines. he gave ’Al¯ a captured girl named Rayta. All¯h’s name did not always suffice as a substitute for a servant. seek refuge in All¯h from the Satan for it sees Satan.” Muhammad tells the a believers (6581). 593. the tribe of Muhammad’s u foster mother. Two other girls from the same booty were given as gifts. REMEMBRANCE OF GOD of acquiring a slave for herself. 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. VIRTUE. Demonology is the other side of theology. 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). 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. as a gift. p. 7 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. But Muhammad had none to spare at the time. a Muhammad’s other son-in-law. KNOWLEDGE. DESTINY. ask All¯h for His favour as it sees Angels and when you listen to the braying of a the donkey. ¯ ¯ . i a She was part of the war booty won from the Ban¯ Haw5zin.164 CHAPTER 15. who in turn gave her to his son ’Abdullah.

the Communists can claim Muhammad as their own. 165 .Chapter 16 Paradise.” women will “form a minority” (6600). In book thirty-four. the Last Day The next four books tell us something about Paradise and Hell and their respective inhabitants. “I had a chance to look into Paradise and I found that majority of the people was poor” (6597). According to another tradition. “I have not left after me turmoil for the people but the harm done to men by women” (6604). So avoid the allurement of women: verily. 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). If they so wish. On the other hand. THE POOR The poor fare better at Muhammad’s hand. the first trial for the people of Israel was caused by women” (6606). Their Inmates. “amongst the inmates of Paradise. and the Turmoils and Portents of the Last Hour. 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. though Paradise may be no more than an “opiate” of the poor. called the “Book of Heart-Melting Traditions” (al-Riq¯q). Muhammad says that he has solved all the problems of the believers except the problems created by women. Hell. they also tell us about the Day of Judgment.

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

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

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

A constant Bower of Bliss. Paradise has its own version of a beauty salon. The inhabitants of Paradise show their happiness by telling All¯h: “Why should we a not be pleased. Paradise and Hell go together. “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). Its Description. but if you fail. a “In Paradise. then after them others in ranks” (6796). O Lord. but two-thirds of it really is on Hell and its inmates. CALVINISM In religions where theology is supreme. “The first group of my Ummah to get into paradise would be like a full moon in the night. HIERARCHY Paradise is not without its hierarchy. 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). when Thou hast given us what Thou hast not given to any of Thy creatures?” (6787). The pleasure of seeing others denied Paradise is in fact greater than the pleasure of seeing even one’s own self rewarded. Muhammad anticipates Luther and Calvin by a thousand years. a “the Fire.121 times. appears with still greater frequency . In the Qur¯n. Then those who would be next to them. In the Prophet’s eschatology. the word “Paradise” (jannat) a appears 64 times.” Muhammad says (6760). 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). he is already one of God’s elect or damned long before he is even born. with rather exclusive quarters for the apostles. “Observe moderation” in your doings. An-N¯r. less than the word “Hell” (jahnam). . they would be like the most significantly glittering stars . . The ranking in Paradise will follow the ranking on earth.” the Qur¯n’s pet name for Hell. which appears 76 times. 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. “None amongst you would attain salvation purely because of his deeds. a street to which the inhabitants “would come every Friday. 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). .“The Garden”) The thirty-eighth book is called “The Book of Paradise. he advises. moral action occupies a secondary place. A man is justified by faith. and Its Inmates”. Its Bounties.169 PARADISE (Al-Janna .

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

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

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

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 son of Abraham.” He was the first to dedicate animals to deity. Ab¯Harair reports: u “We were in the company of All¯h’s Messenger when we heard a terrible sound. Cam’a b. In the S¯ras from this period. the fire we know here on earth is only “one-seventieth part of the Fire of Hell” (6811). But as his harem swelled.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. to some up to their waists. “There would be among them those to whom Fire will reach up to their ankles. 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. the legendary progenitor of the Arabs. the houris of old are replaced by “pure wives” (Qur¯n 2:25. ira. Khinzif. brother of Ban¯ Ka’b. u a 4:57). According to Muslim thinking. Muhammad also “saw ’Amr b. 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). In Hell. and to some up to their collar-bones” (6816). a animals which are not loaded and are let loose for the deities (6839).” as the translator explains (note 2999). HELL Muhammad’s accounts of Hell are equally intimate. 200) who set up idols brought from Syria. In caloric heat. the sexual delights and orgies became subdued. Those who tampered with the pure religion of Ishmael. The hunger of Hell is inexhaustible. 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. are severely punished. to some up to their knees. his senior. Stones will hurtle down on the inmates of Hell with great force. ’Amr was the first Khozaite king (A. Similarly. Amir al-Khuz¯’i dragging his intestines in a Fire. “The sinners would be thrown therein and it would continue to say: Is there anything more?” (6825). Luhayy b.” Muhammad tells Ab¯ u u Huraira (6838). . “I saw ’Amr b.D. There are two kinds of the animals to be dedicated: al-bah¯ animals which are left unmilked except for the idols. “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). and as-s¯’iba. dragging his intestines in Fire.

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

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

like the boiling of ¯ scalding water. even a passage or bridge (sir¯t) to heaven. The real regions of Hell and their real torments are reserved for unbelievers. Muhammad is very ready to send unbelievers to hellfire.176 CHAPTER 16. in the language of u the last S ura. Zar¯ is a bitter and thorny plant. and polytheists of different hues and degrees. The fire in Hell knows no rival in fierceness. The blazing fire of Laz¯. polytheists. Muslim theologians a assure us that it will be pretty cool and pleasant for Muslims unless they have committed some great sins. 17:60. there is Sa’¯ for the Sabians.. is for the Christians.” According to some commentators. It is Hell only in name and is in fact a purgatory for Muslims. Another tradition tells us that Hell will have seventy thousand jungles. Jah¯ for idolaters. Muhammad promises a sorry plight indeed for unbelievers of all shades: Jews. each tree there having seventy thousand branches. It is called Jahanam. and never has any light. of fire so wide that it would take forty years to traverse the distance. of All¯h’s command. the “Tree of Zaqq¯m. The last are those who saw through Muhammad and no a longer believed in his mission but were afraid to admit it openly. “It burnt a thousand years so that it became red. a region in Hell is conceived a which is least oppressive. the infidels will be surrounded by a wall Mazahar i. 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. toiling.g. fire which “permits nothing to endure. which shall burst their bowels . . .e. .” i. i u 44:43-46). They paid him only the prudential homage due to one who is powerful. which leaves nothing a unconsumed. and which is a prepared for those who reject Faith” (2:24). nor leaves anything alone” (74:28). the still more intense fire of Hutamah is for the Jews. another terrible food. Christians. and burnt another thousand years till it became black and dark. weary. PARADISE. Similarly. loathsome in smell.” There are other traditions in the same vein. In other S¯ras (e. every branch will house seventy thousand serpents .” is mentioned. . 56:52.. In the S ura Gh¯shiya (“The Overwhelming ¯ a Event. the water is so hot that even a drop of it is capable of melting away all the mountains of the world. they shall be given water like molten copper . No food will there be for them but a bitter zar¯ which will neither nourish nor i satisfy hunger” (88:1-7). and ir im H¯wiyah for the hypocrites. HELL. The Qur¯n asks you to “fear the Fire whose fuel is Men and Stones. which shall dissolve everything in their bellies. THEIR INMATES. . the Day of Judgment). “If the infidels complain of thirst. Saqar for the Magi. it “will boil in their [eaters?] inside like molten brass. THE LAST DAY order to fulfill the letter. “Has the tidings reached thee of the Overwhelming Event? Some faces that Day will be humiliated. . hypocrites. .” This had¯ derives from Ab¯ Huraira and is quoted in the Tafseer is u ¯ According to the same commentary. infidels. if not the spirit. idolaters.

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

blind in the left eye and a a is. . the “Ka’ba would be destroyed by an Abyssinian having two small shanks” (6951). a Before the Last Hour comes. Another sign of the approaching Hour will be that “the sun would rise from the West” (7039). or the servant of All¯h. “The Last Hour would not come unless the Euphrates would uncover a treasure of gold” (6920). . 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). It will not come “until fire emits from the earth of Hij¯z which would illuminate the necks of the camels of Busra” (6935). will be loyal to the Jews and not reveal their identity.178 CHAPTER 16. It will not come a “until the people have [again] taken to the worship of L¯t and ’Uzza” (6945). HELL. ¯ DAJJAL Muhammad prepares Muslims for the coming Hour. “Hasten to do good deeds before six things happen: the rising of the sun from the West. this refers to either the Christians or the polytheists of Abyssinia. THEIR INMATES. red in complexion. a ¯ IBN SAYYAD A very interesting story is told about one Ibn Sayy¯d (6990-7004). He disputed Muhammad’s apostleship. “for it is the tree of the Jew” (6985). the smoke. who was believed a to be Dajj¯l by the Companions of Muhammad. He “would be followed a by seventy thousand Jews of Isfah¯n wearing Persian Shawls” (7034). the Dajj¯l .” Only a very thorny tree known as the gharqad. which is painful to touch. 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. ” (7039). 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). come and kill him. a “Don’t you bear witness that I am the Messenger of All¯h?” Muhammad demanded of a . with the word k¯fir inscribed on his forehead. “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. there is a Jew behind a me. According to the translator. a Dajj¯l is mentioned in many ah¯d¯ He is a kind of Antichrist. PARADISE.

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


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



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. ¯ ¯

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

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

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

For example. but We know them. at least nominally. they would all without doubt have followed thee. and in addition shall they be sent to grievous penalty” (9:101). They are obstinate in hypocrisy. a a The Prophet warns these recalcitrants that “unless ye go forth. say to them that the Fire of Hell is fiercer in heat. 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. if ye but knew” (Qur¯n 9:41).’ Muhammad. in the cause of All¯h. In the Islamic tradition. ‘Go not forth in the heat. a a But Muhammad did not leave matters with divine threats. “If there had been immediate gain in sight. Thou knowest them not. and many Medinans put forward all kinds of excuses. which now included. and when you said. so they put forward many excuses for not going.189 soldiers. . And again He a warned His Prophet thus: “Certain of the Arabs round about you are hypocrites . and journey easy. But there was opposition in Medina itself amongst the ans¯rs under the very nose of a the Prophet. All¯h will punish you a with a grievous penalty and put others in your place.” All¯h said of them (9:97). 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. 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.” All¯h tells Muhammad (Qur¯n 9:42). They hated to strive and fight with their goods and their persons in the Cause of God: they said. Though they were sent back. and strive and struggle. He also took more secular measures. with your goods and your persons. the whole Arab world. these men were subsequently a remembered with honor as “Weepers”. That is best for you. These Arabs were not exempted from the general conscription and were forced into the march. Muhammad made an appeal to all and sundry in the Muslim world. For All¯h has power over all things” (Qur¯n 9:39). Both were condemned by All¯h in the Qur¯n: “The Arabs of the a a desert are the worst in unbelief and hypocrisy. Twice shall we punish them. Of such people.’ they turned back their eyes streaming with tears” (Qur¯n 9:92). their spirit was considered praiseworthy. His appeal was All¯h’s own appeal. “Go ye a forth. 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 . The worst offenders were the Arabs of the desert as well as the Arabs settled in neighborhood of Medina. many had to be sent away for lack of funds. ‘I can find no mounts for you. whether equipped lightly or heavily. if only they could understand” (9:81). . But Him you would not harm in the least. But even so.

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

so that they should adequately equip themselves for his expedition.” he says. so he informed the Muslims about the actual situation. expressed his repentance for not joining the Tab¯k expedition. “Nothing could save me but the telling of truth.” Though eminently qualified to participate. “All¯h’s Messenger set out for this expedition in extremely hot season. I had never before this expedition simultaneously in my possession two rides. Ka’b. “When this news reached me that All¯h’s Messenger was on his way back from Tab¯k I was greatly perturbed. a place near Min¯ in Mecca. who was a poet. a Now he waited with dread for the return of Muhammad. 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. where seventy-three a men and two women of Medina took a pledge in A. 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. and Ka’b. neither age nor health nor lack of means. he decided to speak the truth. he kept it as a secret. 620 to shelter and protect Muhammad in Medina.” He also tells us that “when All¯h’s Messenger a intended to set out on an expedition. the a journey was long and the land [which the army had to traverse] was waterless and he had to confront a large army. The next day Muhammad arrived.” he said to himself. he says the expedition was big. the “holy prophet had in his mind the idea of threatening the Christians u of Arabia in Syria and those of Rome [i. “Never did I possess means enough and my circumstances more favourable than at this occasion . “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.e. the subject a a a of our discussion in this chapter. he was determined to deal firmly with those who had failed to accompany him. that the Prophet had departed. to his dismay. “more than ten thousand people.. . I thought a u of fabricating false stories and asked myself how I would save myself from the anger of the following day.191 KA’B SPEAKS When Muhammad returned to Medina. Of the many who had remained behind. So far as the Battle of Badr is concerned. .” But later. Ka’b went on postponing his preparations till one day he found.” But this expedition was a different thing. 4 . Hil¯l. 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. but it was All¯h Who made them confront their a enemies without their intention to do so. three were ans¯rs who had been loyal followers of Muhammad: Mur¯ra. 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. the Byzantine Empire]”. D.” Ka’b tells us that in undertaking this journey to Tab¯k.” Ka’b had no excuse for remaining behind.” Protesting his loyalty to the Prophet.

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

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

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

Some of them murmured to each other: “See what we have done to ourselves. The Qur¯n refers to the hyponly twenty-one ah¯d is. Some of the citizens saw.” as the Qur¯n says (9:68). Doubting Muhammad’s prophetic mission was hypocrisy. Their Characteristics and Command Concerning Them” (Kit¯b Sif¯t al-Mun¯fiq¯ wa Ahk¯mihim). So those Muslim converts of Medina who became doubters were regarded as hypocrites. and the rejecters of Faith. called Mun¯fiq in. For them is the curse of All¯h and an enduring punishment. It is a small book. men who began to entertain questions about the apostleship of Muhammad as they came to know him somewhat better. with pain and alarm but also with increasing helplessness. such doubts were morally the most heinous. They were doubters.some out of conviction. a bottomless pit of scorching fire. and some out of spite for the Meccans. But very soon the refugees became stronger than the citizens. skeptics. Muhammad repeatedly threatens the hypocrites with blazing a hellfire. a H¯wiyah. others out of chivalry. men of incomplete faith. . or S ura. and there is a whole chapter. We have laid open our lands to them and have shared 195 .Chapter 19 Hypocrites (Mun¯fiq¯ a in) The thirty-sixth book is on the “Hypocrites. men and a a women. “All¯h has promised the hypocrites. 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. a a ocrites very often (twenty-five times). named after ¯ ¯ them. MEDINANS DOWNGRADED IN THEIR OWN CITY Many Medinans had offered Muhammad and his followers refuge and protection in their city . that they were being reduced to a second-class status in their own hometown. . containing a a a in a ¯ but in some ways it is important. therein shall they dwell . The Qur¯nic scholars coming after him put them in the hottest region of Hell. the Fire of Hell.

676). 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. and soon they seized a whole yard. 1 . The poets of that time were like the journalists of our age. Auf. Muhammad detested them. HYPOCRITES (MUN AFIQ IN) with them all that we possessed. But the result was the same: paralysis of will and action. 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. ¯ ¯ 2 Maxime Rodinson. Muhammad (Pelican Books. It was the proverbial story of the camel and the old woman in a hut.” The Medinans gave Muhammad and his followers an inch. But the realization came too late. a centenarian poet u belonging to the Khazrajite clan. “You obey a a stranger who does not belong among you. 157-158. Some of the members of the opposition were gifted. many of them believed in war spoils. pp. For now Muhammad was strong and they were weak. converts. p. then by All¯h. and lay in wait for an opportunity to deal with them effectively.” she sang. Those who no longer believed in him had come to fear him. appealed to the a a i Medinan tribes of M¯lik. related to Aws Man¯t. S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. They could put their ideas into verses. 1973). belonging to the Ban¯ Aws. “Yet there is a rider come among them who divided them. He seized the opportunity and struck fast. A woman poet named ’Asm¯ hint Marw¯n. Now that Muhammad had been in town with them for some days. 624 brought him the opportunity. His success against the Quraish gave him a new power in Medina.” Some of these verses are quoted by Ibn Hish¯m and W¯qid¯ and a a i reproduced by Maxime Rodinson. If we had kept our own for ourselves. 1 Ab¯ ’Afak.196 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 19. said in a poem that the different a tribes of Medina were good neighbors and loyal allies. the Medinans were also able to arrive at a better estimate of him. Some of them thought that he was no better than a religious humbug. 2 Muhammad was much perturbed. INTELLECTUAL OPPOSITION The opposition to Muhammad did not emanate only from mun¯fiq¯ the disillusioned a in. for though they did not believe in Muhammad. D. they a would have gone somewhere else. First he dealt with the poets whom he feared the most. His victory at Badr in January A. The opposition could now be intimidated. The equation with respect to both local supporters and local adversaries changed appreciably to his advantage. and much of it could also be bought.

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

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

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

” But though he refrained from executing the idea immediately. and you have divided your property among them . S¯ a irat Ras ul All ah. On the way back. with his usual weakness. p. Muhammad did not want to pick a quarrel at the time. He went to Muhammad and offered to kill his father with his own hands.’ But when we return to the Medina city. a a who was a servant of ’Umar. a fanatic Muslim. and a a the quarrel soon spread to others. when confronted with this statement. the idea of ’Abdullah’s assassination was so much in the air that his own son. All¯h confirmed it openly a in a Qur¯nic verse (63:7-8). 8 Ibn Ish¯q. denied it.200 ¯ ¯ CHAPTER 19. 491.” he advised. he gave it serious thought. I think that between us and ‘these vagabonds of a Quraish’ it is like saying ‘Feed a dog and it will devour you. a quarrel broke out between a citizen named Sin¯n and a refugee named Jihj¯. about ’Abdullah. Ibn Ubayy. He had an image to protect. Huzair. Hoping to play on the rivalry between the two Medina tribes. who was a chief of the Khazrajites. But wiser counsels prevailed. HYPOCRITES (MUN AFIQ IN) DISSENSION BETWEEN THE CITIZENS AND THE REFUGEES Only some months after the tragedy of the Ban¯ Quraizah was enacted. Ibn Ubayy referred to the insolence of the refugees: “This is what you have done to yourselves. also heard about it. Aws and Khazraj. Tempers were frayed on both sides. Since ’Abdullah was an influential citizen.” 8 Later. an Arau bian tribe inhabiting a region about eight days’ march from Medina. They are trying to outdo us seeking to outnumber us in our own land! By All¯h. Muslim traditions and histories tell this story with great pride. . at a more opportune moment. . You have let them occupy your country. But even he advised Muhammad to deal with ’Abdullah gently and cautiously. On this occasion. two thousand camels. and later. the stronger will drive out the weaker. so he accepted the denial. But Muhammad was cautious. 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. and five thousand sheep and goats. “Command ’Abb¯d ibn Bishr a to kill him. Jihj¯ struck Sin¯n. a THE ASSASSINATION OF ’ABDULLAH PROPOSED ’Umar counseled Muhammad to have Ibn Ubayy killed. The booty included two hundred families. an Awsite chief and a staunch Muslim. and his assassination would have unnecessarily jeopardized Muhammad’s own position. He did not want people “to say that Muhammad kills his own followers. ¯ ¯ . he consulted Usaid b. he was spared. With all the proposals and consultations. Muhammad was returning after looting the Ban¯ Mustaliq.

but a revelation later descended on him (63:1) attesting that Zaid had told the truth and establishing ’Abdullah as a liar (6677). 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. ¯ ¯ . i The last we hear of Ibn Ubayy is in connection with Tab¯k. who questioned ’Abdullah. Arqam reports that while returning from a journey in which they “faced many hardships” (after sacking Ban¯ Mustaliq). Muhammad replied exultantly: “If I had killed him on the day you advised me to. 625). when ’Abdullah’s position became weak through his own vacillation and temporizing. ’Umar confessed the wisdom of Muhammad’s decision.D. By this time. on oath. according to Ibn Ish¯q. he had u already become a back number. other Medinan chiefs would have been furious. The latter. at his a is son’s request. with this background. Zaid b. let us turn once more to the Sah¯ Muslim. Muhammad at first accepted this denial at its face value.” They also heard him say that on their return to Medina.” Muhammad also came to his grave and “brought him out from that. p. Now. S¯bit reports: “Alla ah’s Apostle set out for Uhud. INTIMIDATION Intimidation of the opposition began as early as the Battle of Uhud. “gave him his shirt which he would use as a coffin for his father. denied having said any such thing. and he died two or three months after Tab¯k. and he was isolated from his people and allies. 492. the Prophet.” ’Umar submitted. who narrates the whole story.” “I know the Apostle’s order is more blessed than mine. the “honourable would drive out the meaner therefrom. 9 The story a is repeated by Tabar¯ too. PRAYER FOR DEAD UNBELIEVERS FORBIDDEN The next two ah¯d¯ (6679-6680) tell us that when ’Abdullah died. But now they themselves would do it if I commanded them. ih ’ABDULLAH INCITES THE MEDINANS Zaid b. placed him on his knee and put his saliva in his mouth.201 Later on.” He also prayed for him even against the protest of ’Umar. The ¯ 9 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah.” Zaid reported the matter to Muhammad. they heard ’Abdullah b. which took place in the third year of the Hijra (January-February A. Some of the persons who were with them came back. Whatever u opposition was still left in Medina evaporated with him.

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

but that in itself a gives them no true spiritual validity. and as he reached Medina a notorious hypocrite from amongst the hypocrites had died” (6684). It is feverish in tone.. but with the a .203 Messenger came back from a journey and as he was near Medina. and deluded mind (i. and all such details of little larger spiritual significance. india a vidual men. u The man whose death the storm caused or proclaimed was Ruffaa.behind them often a . the circumstances of their revelation. there was such a violent gale that the mountain seemed to be pressed. merely an exaggerated. It tells us about the time. Qur¯nic verses often relate to external events. The Qur¯n cannot be read like other scriptures. The Qur¯nic verses are reputed to have come from a mind in trance. According to other traditions.e. dvesa. It does not deal with the ‘heavenly order’ of the Gnostic traditions (the rta of the Vedas or the Ma¯t of ancient Egypt). Ruffaa had been the first to receive ’Umar and offer him hospitality when the latter came to Medina. Ibn ’Umar. but that the trances of a passionate. it does not elucidate but merely lays down and prescribes. and moha) are not to be trusted . The Yogas tell us that trance is possible at every level of the mind. the place. angry. The Qur¯n deals with ‘accidents’. reports Muhammad as saying: “The similitude of a hypocrite is that of a sheep which roams aimlessly between two flocks. 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. of a mind characterized by k¯ma. sensuous copy of the here. a Jewish tribe of Medina that was one of the first tribes to suffer at the hands a of Muhammad. She goes to one at one time and to the other at another time” (6696). All¯h’s Messenger said: This wind has a perhaps been made to blow for the death of a hypocrite. stands a lunatic or a malevolent criminal. who had already chosen his pastures. a chief of the Ban¯ i Qainuq¯. The “Book of Commentary” gives equally external information about some of these verses. “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). it threatens and promises. Muhammad was returning to Medina after his attack on the Ban¯ Mustaliq. . incidents in the life of the Prophet. for it is very different from them in a temper and subject matter. hereafter.

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

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

Mahmud. 310 (A. different classes (tabaq¯t) of Muhammad’s Companions and Successors. Selections from sermons. New York. 1885. The Rauzat-us-Safa by Muhammad b. Elder & Co. The next most important source on the life of the Prophet and the a Companions. Delhi-6. India. Tabaq¯t Ibn Sa’d. Scholarly and pioneering study. BIBLIOGRAPHY BIOGRAPHIES OF MUHAMMAD S¯ irat Ras ul All¯h by Ibn Ish¯q. E. 1980. Tehatsek... The Life of Mahomet by Sir William Muir. H. 3rd ed. Scholarly. reprinted. i. Encyclopaedia of Religions and Ethics. 1 and 2. trans. 1973. A fifteenth-century Persian biography which takes into account many preceding traditions. letters. and his S¯ of Muhammad. S¯ a ikh i. D. by Syed a i. The Life of Muhammad. English translation under the title The Garden of Purity. Urdu translation in 8 vols. irat al-Nab¯ is a biography i. The very first definitive biography and the source of ¯ a a subsequent ones. 922). Karachi: Nafees Academy. London: Smith. SHIAISM Nahj al-Bal¯ghah. Tehran: World Organization for Isl¯mic Services. 1976. Karachi: Nafees Academy. popularly known as K¯tib al-W¯qid¯ composed fifteen volumes on a a i. . 1976.206 CHAPTER 20. Mohammad by Maxime Rodinson. Tehran: Shahpur Square. English translation. Ghaffari. by Tabar¯ The first volume. 4 vols. popularly known as Mirkhond. Ibn Sa’d. edited by James Hastings. Now being reprinted by Idarahi Adbiyati Delhi. London: Royal Asiatic Society. vols. Oxford. Pelican Books. Edinburgh and New York: T. Guillaume. ¯ died in A. Clark. translated and edited by A. New Delhi: Oriental a Books Reprint Corporation. At-Tabari irat al-Nab¯ is an i authoritative source of Muhammad’s subsequent biographies. and the history of a the Khal¯ ifas up to his own time. T¯r¯ Tabar¯ or Annals. 1861. Khavendshah b. 1893. Ali Raza. a Shiaism by S. Urdu translation in 11 vols. S¯ iras: The Biography of the Prophet. & T. GENERAL REFERENCE Dictionary of Isl¯m by Thomas Patrick Hughes. and Delhi: Oxford University Press. and sayings of ’Al¯ trans.

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

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