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

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

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

Thanks to the new oil wealth of the Arabs. there is a continuing Muslim problem that refuses solution despite the division of .190 ah¯d¯ he provides 3. a Even in the best of circumstances. That they received plunder and established an empire in a the process is another matter. All¯h. Indonesia. but capable of cleverness and an and the Had is.that it is the handmaid of the Qur a ¯ unmotivated by any seeking of its own. we have also quoted from the notes . Here they work from the bottom as well as from the top. the old mission is being revived. These were accidental terrestrial rewards for disinterested celestial labors. The oil-rich Arabs are assuming responsibility for Muslims everywhere. but the full fury of their interference is to be seen in countries of Asia and Africa which are economically poor and ideologically weak. ¯ even brilliance within its self-chosen role of justifying and defending.to give the reader a sampling of Isl¯mic scholarship. Sidd¯ ¯ has done more than translate the original work. infidel countries which have not yet been fully subdued by Muslims. in Pakistan and Bangladesh. addition to clarifying obscure points and references. Sidd¯ ¯ translation. They have adopted the Muslim minorities of D¯ru’l Harb. a i. In India. a a countries where Isl¯m dominates. Their money is active throughout the Muslim world. When we read Dr. In fact. it is difficult to assimilate Muslim minorities into the national mainstream of a country. having been dormant for several centuries. They have bought the conversion of the presidents of Gabon and the Central African Empire.about forty-five times . and even India. Isl¯m. is again a on the march. dethrone the gods of their neighbors. in Malaysia. In ih a is.v whose mother tongue is English. the Muslims had their own variation of the “white man’s burden” of civilizing the world.e.. A kind of “Muslim Cominform” is taking shape in Jidda.. Muslims wielded their a swords to root out polytheism. with a large Muslim population. Dr.” i. They buy local politicians. Here and there. but it is faithful and reproduces the atmosphere of the original. they could be an important subject of treatment in their own right. They are using these minorities to convert these countries into D¯ru’l Isl¯m. or “countries of peace. Even before the Europeans came on the scene. a Now a word about how the present volume came to be written.e. their mission was even more pretentious for it was commanded by All¯h Himself. In a Sah¯ containing 7.081 footnotes. because the notes are set in a well-established scholarly lore. we felt that it contained important material about Isl¯m which iqi’s a should be more widely known. He has provided copious iqi explanatory notes. It was this support which was behind the rebellion of the Moro Muslims in the Philippines. and install in their place their own godling. The Arabs are still militarily weak and dependent on the West. They show that the role of scholarship in Isl¯m is secondary . the notes give us an authentic taste of traditional Muslim scholarship. looking after their spiritual needs as well as their more temporal interests. Arab support has made the task still more difficult. If anything.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

or Civil List. But within two decades everything changed. for All¯h is in front of him when he is engaged in prayer” a (1116). thanks to the enormous revenues received from the outlying colonial regions in the neighborhood of the Arabian peninsula. 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). For a fuller account of the Civil List. to wear shoes while praying is permissible (1129-1130). but it is permissible to spit on the left side or under the left foot” (1118).000 dirhams a year. but Muhammad found their odors a “repugnant” (1149) and therefore forbade coming to the mosque after eating them. To eat onion or garlic is not har¯m (forbidden). Officers of the Arab occupation armies in the different cantonment areas of the empire received yearly from 6. II. DOS AND DON’TS There are many dos and don’ts. The instruction was meant to give them time to adjust their clothing before the women lifted their heads (had¯ 883 and note 665). and he commanded the menstruating women to remain away from the place of worship of the Muslims” (1932). and every boy born in these military quarters received from his birth 100 dirhams annually. 4.000 dirhams a year. established by ¯ ’Umar specified that each of Muhammad’s widows was to receive 12.000 dirhams. pp. 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. Every Muslim had a a place in this classification. According to another tradition. refer to the T ar¯ Tabar¯ ¯ ikh i. after Muhammad’s death during the two years of Ab¯ Bakr’s caliphate. “for the angels are harmed by the same things as men” (1145). The Prophet commanded the believer that while praying “he should not spit in front of him. and their children. but clothes having designs and markings on them are distracting and should be avoided (1131-1133). vol. he “forbade spitting on the right side or in front. each of the more than three hundred veterans of the Battle of Badr. For example.000 dirhams a year. 2. 5. a privilege not denied to men who can afford it.000 to 9. The diw an. They were also told not to precede men in lifting their heads from prostration. The translator explains that this had¯ relates to a period when is the Companions were very poor and could not afford proper clothing. 476-479.23 WOMEN AND MOSQUES Women can go to the mosque but they “should not apply perfume” (893). . But in a footnote explaining the standpoint of the Isl¯mic shar¯ a i’ah with regard to women joining men in prayer. is Muhammad commanded the believers to “take out unmarried women and purdahobserving ladies for ’Id prayers.000 dirhams a year.. everyone who had converted to Isl¯m before that date.

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

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

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

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


and everyone else was excluded on principle. of All¯h. a a In the technical vocabulary of Isl¯m.Chapter 4 The Poor Tax (Zak¯t) a The fifth book is on al-zak¯t (charity or poor tax). In this form. ¯ This has been the Muslim practice ever since. the first phrase. Zakat was solely meant for the brothers in faith. There was as yet no universal fellowship as such for a brother in distress. and for the wayfarers. ¯ USES OF ZAKAT FUNDS According to the Qur¯n. or zak¯t. an old Arab practice. Muhammad had many followers who were needy. Every society preaches and to some a extent practices charity toward its less-fortunate brothers. But two other items are also mentioned which deserve special attention. conventional recipients of charity. The funds are also to be used for the “bureaucracy. an a obligatory payment made by the Muslims to the new state that was forming. no sense of a larger human brotherhood.” those who collect and administer the funds. and to be spent by its representatives.” a a 29 . 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. “in the service. those who paid zak¯t were resentful. depended a great deal on the goodwill and charity of the people of Medina. Perhaps the rhetoric on charity emanates largely from this situation. or way. Much of the “Book of Zak¯t” is concerned with the question of power. But with him it became a tax. being migrants. In the begina ning. and most of them. or inclining] the hearts [muallafa qul ubuhum]” to ¯ ¯ Isl¯m (Qur¯n 9:60).” All these are a in]. and those a who spent it actually acquired a new source of power and patronage. the zak¯t funds are meant for “the poor and the paupers a a [fuqar¯ and misk¯ for those in bondage and debt.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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).

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

RELIGIOUS WARS (JIH AD) RAID WITHOUT WARNING It is not always necessary to give warning or offer options in advance. and was the linchpin in the economy of the ummah for centuries. is Fortified by this revelation. So All¯h hastened to a speak through Muhammad: “Whatever trees you have cut down or left standing on their trunks. as some others have translated it. As the Prophet a says.” Since destroying palm trees was something of a sacrilege in Arabia. Muhammad cut down and burned the celebrated vineyards of the enemy at at-T¯’if in the eighth year of the Hijra.” CHILDREN OF THE POLYTHEISTS In jih¯d. But if they are killed. or. Sa’b b. “war is a stratagem” (4311). They are generally taken prisoners and then enslaved or sold or released after ransom is exacted. All¯h made war booty a lawful for the Muslims. had¯ 4324). but Muhammad “disapproved a of the killing of women and children” (4319). unknown to the Arabs before. and ordered their date-palms “to be burnt and cut. “cunning. JUSTIFICATION OF BURNING TREES Muhammad surrounded a Jewish tribe called Ban¯ Naz¯ residing in the vicinity of u ir. it is lawful and pure. al-Madina. That was another contribution by a Muhammad to the new ethics of war. SPOILS OF WAR The plundering of infidels and polytheists is a central concept in the Muslim religion. this shocked the Arabs. it is with the permission of All¯h so that he may disgrace the evil-doers” (Qur¯n a a 59:5.84 ¯ CHAPTER 9. all arms-bearing males of the enemy are killed. we kill the a a children of polytheists during the night raids. All is fair in love and war. Religious conversion is likely to ensue from a military victory followed by pillage and plunder.” says the Qur¯n a . “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. particularly a war fought in the Way of All¯h. Jass¯ma said to Muhammad: “Messenger of All¯h. He [Muhammad] said: ‘They are from them’ ” (4323). no song need be made about it. this requirement can be waived. He killed those who fought and imprisoned others” (4292). “Eat ye the spoils of war. If need be.

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

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

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

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

part of the spoils that accrued to him when the Jewish community there was defeated. until the lands of Quraiz and Naz¯ were conquered.” his Coptic slave-wife. As a chief.” he says (4340). according to others were a portion of the confiscated estates of the Ban¯ Naz¯ Similarly. Then he began to return to him ir whatever he had received” (4376). He also had seven other gardens in Medina. he had properties at Khaibar. ¯ One plot of land from the confiscated properties Muhammad turned into what is known as the “summer garden of Mary. to the exclusion of the ans¯rs. the Prophet received a fifth of all the spoils taken from the enemy. . “When the Messenger of All¯h a had finished the war with the people . he also had the first choice in everything. “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 property more valuable than anything he had ever possessed (4006). Khaibar was a populous valley inhabited by the Jews. . a but kept a large part for himself. ’Umar tells us: “The prophet sent an expedition a to Najd and I was among the troop. . . distributed some of them among his Quraish followers. He would meet the annual expenditure of his family from the income thereof. The properties of the exiled Ban¯ Naz¯ a Jewish tribe of Medina. and would spend what remained for purchasing horses and weapons as preparation for Jihad’ ” (4347).89 after embracing Isl¯m. were confiscated by Muhammad. u ir. MUHAMMAD’S SHARE In the distribution of the booty. Muhammad and the other Emigrants became rich enough to pay the ans¯rs for their help and gifts. Anas reports that after Muhammad’s a migration to Medina. which according to some were bestowed on him by a Jew named Mukhayr¯ but iq. . He also tells us that he acquired land in Khaibar that had belonged to the defeated Jews. whether slaves or women or property. the Muh¯jirs [Emigrants] returned to the Ans¯rs a a [Helpers] all the gifts they had given them” (4375). These properties were particularly meant for the Holy Prophet. So did the others. Eleven or twelve camels came to the lot of every fighter and each one of them also got one extra camel” (4330). “a person placed at his [Muhammad’s] disposal some date-palms . They were raided and captured and their property confiscated. He u ir. As the amount of war booty increased. They got a large number of camels as booty. Spoils obtained without a battle went entirely to him.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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. but when it did. All¯h “destroys it [the a Ummah] as the Apostle witnesses it and he cools his eyes by destruction as they had belied him and disobeyed his command” (5679). ’Aisha. “He [Muhammad] was the most detested person amongst people in my eyes. I would give you so much. embrace Isl¯m. a Anas says that the Prophet never failed to give when “asked for anything in the name of Isl¯m. ADULATION The book also tells us what Muhammad’s followers thought of him. . The man was overwhelmed. He promised someone: “In case we get wealth from Bahrain. Ab¯ Bakr gave the man a handful u of coins. “sublimest among people and the most generous amongst them and he was the bravest of men” (5715-5717). Another had¯ tells us that after he was granted a victory at Hunain by All¯h. I counted them as five hundred dinars and he [Ab¯ u Bakr] said: Here is double of this for you. He calls back his Messenger as “a harbinger and recompense in the world to come.” the beneficiary tells us (5731). the is a Prophet gave one hundred camels to Safw¯n b. tells us that whenever the Prophet “had to choose between two things he adopted the easier one. He punishes it through His living Apostle.133 A PROPHET’S DOUBLE ROLE When an ummah is safe from the wrath of God. This was called his charitable disposition. many of them by Anas.” A person came and Muhammad gave him a large flock of sheep and goats. “He asked me to count them.” The Prophet died before the wealth arrived from Bahrain. however. “He a went back to his people and said: My people.” But when God intends to cause destruction to an ummah. He found Muhammad most valorous. for Muhammad gives so much a charity as if he has no fear of want” (5728).” the recipient said (5730). provided it was no sin” (5752). 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). It gives many ahad¯ on this subject. He then gave him another a hundred and yet another hundred. Muhammad’s promises of booty were fulfilled even posthumously. But he continued giving to me until now he is the dearest of people to me. Ummaya. who was the Prophet’s servant for nine or ten ¯ is years. most courageous.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

VIRTUE. REMEMBRANCE OF GOD of acquiring a slave for herself. ¯ ¯ . KNOWLEDGE. seek refuge in All¯h from the Satan for it sees Satan. 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. 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. p. Two other girls from the same booty were given as gifts. 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. 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). who in turn gave her to his son ’Abdullah. a Muhammad’s other son-in-law. 593.164 CHAPTER 15. the daughter of Hil¯l. he gave ’Al¯ a captured girl named Rayta. Demonology is the other side of theology. The Prophet was a in the habit of giving prisoners of war to his favorite believers as slaves and concubines. DESTINY. the tribe of Muhammad’s u foster mother. as a gift.” Muhammad tells the a believers (6581). 7 S¯ irat Ras ul All ah. For example. But Muhammad had none to spare at the time. All¯h’s name did not always suffice as a substitute for a servant. and the second to ’Umar. one to ’Usm¯n.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

four thousand virgins. and eight thousand women who have known men. 1980). ’Umar. 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. each of them will have seventy thousand boys waiting on her. when a believer embraces any such houri. Gibbon says that Muhammad did not give any specifics about the male companions of the 1 Aldous Huxley. every Muslim will own a mansion of pearls. every room will also have seventy tables laid out. and seventy-two women. every room will also have seventy maid-slaves. p. PARADISE. 112. He will have the strength to have intercourse with them all. According to ’Abdullah b. every room will have seventy couches. Ab¯ Huraira increases the number. According to Anas. every house will have seventy rooms of emeralds. “the least amongst the people u of Paradise shall have eighty thousand slaves. every inhabitant of Paradise will have at his disposal five hundred houris. the number of slaves is ten thousand. According to another tradition. though rather mathematically expressed. Every believer will have the capability of copulating with each of these houris and maids. According to Ab¯ Sa’id. . HELL. in the Muslim Paradise. and she will have a crown on her head. these women will put on see-through dresses.172 CHAPTER 16. but her lover will be able to look through all of them and see the marrow of the bones of her legs. According to a tradition mentioned by Aldous Huxley. and every couch will be covered with seventy carpets of every color. even the least of the inhabitants of Paradise will have one thousand slaves waiting on him. THE LAST DAY NUMBER OF SLAVES According to a tradition narrated by the same authority. SEE-THROUGH GARMENTS According to Ab¯ Sa’id. THEIR INMATES. holding the train of her robe. Moksha (London: Chatto & Windus. According to him. Each houri will u have seventy garments. every mansion will have seventy houses of rubies.” NUMBER OF HOURIS Anas stinted on women. and a houri will be sitting on each carpet. and on every table there will be seventy dishes of seventy colors. still furu ther. every orgasm will last for six hundred years.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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



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. ¯ ¯

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

1861. BIBLIOGRAPHY BIOGRAPHIES OF MUHAMMAD S¯ irat Ras ul All¯h by Ibn Ish¯q. Tabaq¯t Ibn Sa’d. by Syed a i. Tehran: Shahpur Square. Urdu translation in 11 vols. Khavendshah b. 922). S¯ iras: The Biography of the Prophet. Ali Raza. Clark. Guillaume. 1973. ¯ died in A. D. The Life of Muhammad. GENERAL REFERENCE Dictionary of Isl¯m by Thomas Patrick Hughes. letters. 310 (A. Ibn Sa’d. 1893. The next most important source on the life of the Prophet and the a Companions. 4 vols. H. and Delhi: Oxford University Press. At-Tabari irat al-Nab¯ is an i authoritative source of Muhammad’s subsequent biographies. Pelican Books. i. 1976. Encyclopaedia of Religions and Ethics. India. The very first definitive biography and the source of ¯ a a subsequent ones. by Tabar¯ The first volume. The Rauzat-us-Safa by Muhammad b. Ghaffari. popularly known as K¯tib al-W¯qid¯ composed fifteen volumes on a a i. and the history of a the Khal¯ ifas up to his own time. S¯ a ikh i. edited by James Hastings. Mohammad by Maxime Rodinson.206 CHAPTER 20. and sayings of ’Al¯ trans. a Shiaism by S. London: Smith. vols. Now being reprinted by Idarahi Adbiyati Delhi. 3rd ed. Karachi: Nafees Academy. 1885. Delhi-6. translated and edited by A. & T. London: Royal Asiatic Society. and his S¯ of Muhammad. popularly known as Mirkhond. 1980. SHIAISM Nahj al-Bal¯ghah. A fifteenth-century Persian biography which takes into account many preceding traditions. trans. irat al-Nab¯ is a biography i. English translation.. Oxford. . 1976. New York. Scholarly and pioneering study. Edinburgh and New York: T. New Delhi: Oriental a Books Reprint Corporation. Urdu translation in 8 vols. E. English translation under the title The Garden of Purity. The Life of Mahomet by Sir William Muir. different classes (tabaq¯t) of Muhammad’s Companions and Successors. Tehatsek. Elder & Co. reprinted. Tehran: World Organization for Isl¯mic Services. 1 and 2. T¯r¯ Tabar¯ or Annals. Mahmud. Karachi: Nafees Academy. Scholarly.. Selections from sermons.

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

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