REFLECTIONS ON THE CHAPTER OF VICTORY [110]

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Reflection #1


In the Name of God the Most Beneficent The Most Merciful. 


 The Historical Context of this Chapter


The Quraysh had been unable to exploit their own victory over the Muslims at the battle of Uhud, but when the latter were defeated at the battle of Mootah by the Christians, they were tempted to exploit the Christian victory, and to restore the pre-Hudaybiyya conditions in Arabia. The Muslim defeat at Mootah played a key role in the events preceding the fall of Makkah in 630.


Muhammad Husayn Haykal


We may recall that as soon as Khalid and the army returned to Medinah without the proofs of victory (at the battle of Mootah), they were called deserters. Many soldiers and commanders felt so humiliated that they stayed at home in order not to be seen and insulted in public. The campaign of Mootah gave the Quraysh the impression that the Muslims and their power had now been destroyed and that both their dignity and the fear which they previously inspired in others had all but disappeared.

This made the Quraysh incline strongly to the conditions prevalent before the Treaty of Hudaybiyya. They thought that they could now launch a war against which the Muslims were incapable of defending themselves, not to speak of counterattacking or making retaliation. (The Life of Muhammad, Cairo, 1935)

According to the terms of the Treaty of Hudaybiyya, the Arab tribes were free to enter into treaty relations with either the Muslims or the Quraysh. Taking advantage of this stipulation, the tribe of Banu Khoza’a wrote a treaty of friendship with the Prophet of Islam, and another tribe – Banu Bakr – became an ally of the Quraysh. Hostility had existed between these two tribes since pre-Islamic times but now both had to abide by the terms of the Treaty of Hudaybiyya, and to refrain from attacking each other

But eighteen months after the Treaty of Hudaybiyya had been signed, a band of the warriors of Banu Bakr suddenly attacked Banu Khoza’a in their homes at night. The time of this attack is given as late Rajab of 8 A.H. (November 629).

The Khoza’a had done nothing to provoke this attack. They took refuge in the precincts of the Kaaba but their enemies pursued them even there, and killed a number of them. Others saved their lives by seeking the protection of Budail bin Waraqa and his friend, Rafa’a, in their houses, in Makkah.


Muhammad Husayn Haykal


The Treaty of Hudaybiyya prescribed that any Non-­Makkans wishing to join the camp of Muhammad or that of the Quraysh may do so without obstruction. On the basis of this provision, the tribe of Khuza’ah joined the ranks of Muhammad, and that of Banu Bakr joined the Quraysh. Between Khuzaah and Banu Bakr a number of old unsettled disputes had to be suspended on account of the new arrangement.

With the Quraysh now believing (after the battle of Mootah) that Muslim power had crumbled, Banu al Dil, a clan of Banu Bakr, thought that the occasion had come to avenge themselves against Khuzaah. (The Life of Muhammad, Cairo, 1935)

Banu Bakr could not have attacked Khozaa without the connivance and encouragement if not the open support of the Quraysh. Tabari, the historian, says that Ikrima bin Abu Jahl, Safwan bin Umayya and Suhayl bin Amr, all leading figures of Quraysh, disguised themselves and fought at the side of Banu Bakr against the Khozaa. Of these three, the last named was the chief signatory of the Quraysh to the Treaty of Hudaybiyya.


Maxime Rodinson


In Rajab of the year 8 (November 629), in consequence of a vendetta which had been going for several decades, some of the more excited of the Qurayshites at their rear, attacked a group of the tribe of Khuza’a, Mohammed’s allies, not far from Mecca. One man was killed and the rest badly mauled and forced to flee into the sacred territory of Mecca. Pursued even there they took refuge in two friendly houses. Shamefully the Banu Bakr laid siege to the houses. In all twenty people of the Khuza’a were slain. (Mohammed, translated by Anne Carter)

One of the chiefs of Khozaa, Amr bin Salim, went to Medina and appealed to the Prophet for his intervention. The Prophet was shocked to hear the story of the outrage. As an ally of the Khozaa, he had to defend them from their enemies. But before considering military action, he made an attempt to employ peaceful means to obtain redress and justice. He sent a messenger to the Quraysh, and suggested that:

 

 

  • The clients of Quraysh, i.e., Banu Bakr, or Quraysh themselves pay blood-wit to the Banu Khozaa, or;

 

  • Quraysh should waive their protection of Banu Bakr, or;

 

  • They should declare the Treaty of Hudaybiyya to be void.

 

 

Zarqani says that the man who answered for the Quraysh was Qurtaba bin Umar. He said to the envoy of the Prophet that only the last of the three terms was acceptable to them. In other words, the Quraysh told him that the Treaty of Hudaybiyya with its stipulation of a ten-year truce, was already a “dead letter” as far as they were concerned.

The hotheads of the Quraysh had been quick to repudiate the Treaty of Hudaybiyya but very soon their more realistic and discreet leaders realized that the answer they had sent to Medina was a blunder as it had been dictated, not by prudence and sagacity, but by presumption and arrogance.

And when they thought of what the consequences of their action could be, they decided to act immediately to avert disaster. But how? After an animated discussion, they agreed that Abu Sufyan should go to Medina, and should try to persuade the Prophet to renew the Treaty of Hudaybiyya.

When Abu Sufyan arrived in Medina, he first went to see his daughter, Umm Habiba – one of the wives of the Prophet. As he was going to sit on a rug, she pulled it from under him, and said: “You are an unclean idolater, and I cannot allow you to sit on the rug of the Messenger of God.” She treated him as if he was an untouchable pariah.

Shaken by such a reception, he left her, and went to the mosque hoping to see the Prophet himself. But the latter did not give him audience. He then solicited the aid of Abu Bakr, Umar and Ali but all of them told him that they could not intercede for him with the Prophet, and he returned to Makkah empty-handed.

The Quraysh had broken the pledge, and the envoys of Khozaa were still in Medina, demanding justice. If the Prophet had condoned the crime of the Quraysh, he would have seriously compromised his own position in the sight of all Arabs. He could not allow this to happen. Eventually, the Prophet decided to liberate Makkah, and he ordered the Muslims to mobilize.

The army of Islam left Medina on the tenth of Ramadan of 8 A.H. (February 1, 630). The news that an army was marching southwards, spread rapidly in the desert, and even reached Makkah itself. Those members of the clan of Banu Hashim who were still in Makkah, decided, upon hearing this news, to leave the city and to meet the advancing army. Among them were Abbas bin Abdul Muttalib, the uncle of the Prophet; Aqeel bin Abi Talib, and Abu Sufyan bin al-Harith bin Abdul Muttalib, his cousins. They joined the army of Islam, and reentered Makkah with it.

In the afternoon of the 19th of Ramadan, the army arrived in Merr ad-Dharan in the north of Makkah, and halted there to spend the night. At night the Prophet ordered his soldiers to light little fires, and the whole plain lit up with thousands of bonfires.

Abu Sufyan and Hakim bin Hizam had also left Makkah to investigate the reports of the invasion by the Muslims. Riding north on the road to Medina, they also arrived in Merr ad-Dharan, and were dumb-founded to see countless little fires burning in the valley. When they realized they were in the camp of the Muslims, they were greatly troubled not knowing what they could do to save themselves or their city.

Abbas bin Abdul Muttalib also had great anxiety for the safety of the Makkans. He feared that if they offered resistance, they would be massacred. He was riding the white mule of the Prophet through the camp, when at its southern perimeter, he suddenly ran into Abu Sufyan and Hakim bin Hizam.

He told them that they could see the numbers of the Muslims, and that the Quraysh had no power to resist them. Abu Sufyan asked him what he ought to do. Abbas told him to ride behind him on his mule, and that he would take him to the Prophet, and would try to get safe-conduct for him. Hakim bin Hizam returned to Makkah to report on what he had seen and heard. Abbas and Abu Sufyan rode through the Muslim camp Presently, they rode past the tent of Umar, and he wanted to know who were the two visitors.

When Umar recognized Abu Sufyan, he was thrilled, and said to him: “O enemy of God, at last you are in my power, and now I am going to kill you.” But Abbas told him that he (Abu Sufyan) was under his protection. Thereupon Umar rushed to see the Prophet and solicited his permission to kill him. But the Prophet just told Abbas to bring him on the following morning.

Early next morning, Abbas, Abu Sufyan and Umar, all three appeared before the tent of the Prophet. Umar was raring to kill Abu Sufyan but the Prophet restrained him, and invited the latter to accept Islam. Abu Sufyan was not very eager to accept Islam but Abbas told him that if he didn’t, then Umar would kill him, and he would never return to Makkah. Faced by the specter of death, Abu Sufyan declared the Shahadah which formally admitted him to the community of the Muslims.

Abbas also requested the Prophet to grant Abu Sufyan some favor which he would equate with a “distinction.” The Prophet said that all those Makkans who would enter Abu Sufyan’s house, or would stay in their own houses, or would enter the precincts of the Kaaba, would be safe from all harm. Abu Sufyan was very proud that the Prophet had declared his house to be a sanctuary for the idolaters of Makkah. His latter-day friends and admirers are flaunting his “distinction” right to this day.

It was Friday, Ramadan 20, 8 A.H. (February 11, 630) when the army of Islam broke camp at Merr ad-Dharan, and marched toward Makkah. Abbas and Abu Sufyan stood on the brow of an eminence to watch the squadrons march past them. The latter was much impressed by the order, the discipline, the numbers and the espirit de corps of the formations, and said to Abbas:

“Your nephew has truly won a great kingdom and great power.” Abbas snapped: “Woe to you! This is prophethood and not a kingdom.” Abu Sufyan had never seen such an awesome sight before, and with his pagan reflexes, and extremely limited vision, could interpret it only in terms of material power. But he realized that the game for him and the idolaters was over at last, and the only important thing now was to save his and their lives.

Abu Sufyan rushed back to Makkah, and entering the precincts of the Kaaba, called out aloud: “O Makkans! Muhammad has arrived with his army, and you have no power to oppose him. Those of you who enter my house, would be safe from harm, and now only your unconditional surrender can save you from massacre.”

Abu Sufyan’s wife, Hinda, heard his call. She flew into a most violent rage, stormed out of her house, seized him by his beard, and screamed: “O Makkans! Kill this unlucky idiot. He is in dotage. Get rid of him and defend your city from your enemy.”

But who would defend Makkah and how? Presently, Abu Sufyan was surrounded by other citizens of Makkah, and one of them asked him: “Your house can accommodate only a few people. How can so many people find sanctuary in it?” He said: “All those people who stay in their own houses or enter the precincts of the Kaaba, would also be safe.” This ordinance meant that all that the idolaters would have to do to save their lives, would be to stay indoors, and to refrain from challenging the invaders.


Washington Irving


Mohammed prepared a secret expedition to take Mecca by surprise. All roads leading to Mecca were barred to prevent any intelligence of his movements being carried to Mecca. But among the fugitives from Mecca, there was one Hateb, whose family had remained behind, and were without connections or friends to take an interest in their welfare. Hateb now thought to gain favor for them among the Koreish, by betraying the plans of Mohammed.

He accordingly, wrote a letter revealing the intended enterprise, and gave it in charge of a singing woman, who undertook to carry it to Mecca. She was already on the road when Mohammed was appraised of the treachery. Ali and five others, well-mounted, were sent in pursuit of the messenger. They soon overtook her, but searched her person in vain. Most of them would have given up the search and turned back but Ali was confident that the Prophet of God could not be mistaken nor misinformed. Drawing his scimitar, he swore to kill the messenger unless the letter was produced. The threat was effectual. She drew forth the letter from among her hair.

Hateb, on being taxed with his perfidy, acknowledged it; but pleaded anxiety to secure favor for his destitute family, and his certainty that the letter would be harmless, and of no avail against the purposes of the Apostle of God.

Omar spurned at these excuses and would have struck off his head; but Mohammed, calling to mind, that Hateb had fought bravely in support of the faith in the battle of Badr, forgave him.

Mohammed, who knew not what resistance he might meet with, made a careful distribution of his forces as he approached Mecca. While the main body marched directly forward, strong detachments advanced over the hills on each side. To Ali who commanded a large body of cavalry, was confided the sacred banner, which he was to plant on Mount Hadjun, and maintain it there until joined by the Prophet. Express orders were given to all the generals to practice forbearance, and in no instance to make the first attack. (The Life of Mohammed)

Muhammad, the Messenger of God, entered Makkah from the north. Usama, the son of his friend and the martyr of Mootah, Zayd bin Haritha, was riding pillion with him. Muhammad’s head was bowed low, and he was reciting the chapter from Qur’an called “The Victory.”

Ali carried the banner of Islam as he rode at the head of the cavalry. The Prophet ordered Zubayr bin al-Awwam to enter the city from the west, and Khalid bin al-Walid from the south. He gave strict orders to his army not to kill anyone except in self-defense. He had long desired to destroy the idols in Kaaba but he wished to do so without any bloodshed. His orders were clear and explicit; nevertheless, Khalid killed 28 Makkans at the southern gate of the city. He said he had met resistance.


Sir John Glubb


The Muslim occupation of Mecca was virtually bloodless. The fiery Khalid bin Waleed killed a few people at the southern gate and was sharply reprimanded by Mohammed for doing so. (The Great Arab Conquests)

Eight years earlier Muhammad had left Makkah as a fugitive with a price on his head, and now he was entering the same city as its conqueror. His manner, however, bespoke not of pride or even of exultation but of gratitude and humility – gratitude to God for His mercy in bestowing success upon His humble slave, and humility in the contemplation of the vanity of worldly glory, and the evanescence of all things human.

The Prophet rode into the precincts of the Kaaba, dismounted from his camel, called his cousin, Ali ibn Abi Talib, and both of them entered the Kaaba, cognizant of the Divine Commandment to the Prophets, Abraham (Ibrahim) and Ismael:

…and We covenanted with Abraham and Ismael that they should sanctify My house… (Chapter 2; verse 125)

The Prophet and Ali found the House of God (Kaaba) in a state of defilement; it had become a pantheon of 360 idols, and it had to be sanctified. The Prophet knocked down each idol as he read the following verse from Qur’an:

Truth has come, and Falsehood has vanished. For Falsehood is (by its nature) bound to vanish. (Chapter 17; verse 81)

The largest idol in the pantheon was that of Hubal, the dynastic god of the clan of Banu Umayya. Abu Sufyan had taken it with him on a camel into the battle of Uhud to inspire his warriors with its presence. Hubal was mounted on a high pedestal, and the Prophet could not reach it. He, therefore, ordered Ali to climb on his shoulders, and to knock it down. In obedience to the prophetic command, Ali had to stand on the shoulders of the Prophet; he aimed a blow at the principal deity of the idolaters, and smashed it into pieces. With that tremendous stroke, Ali put an end forever to idolatry in the Kaaba!

Kaaba, the House of God, had been sanctified.


Abul Kalam Azad


Some idols were on a high pedestal and the Apostle could not reach them. He ordered Ali to climb on his shoulders and to knock them down. Ali mounted the shoulders of the Apostle, and knocked down the idols. He thus removed the impurity of idolatry from the Kaaba for all time. (The Messenger of Mercy, Lahore, Pakistan, 1970)

When all the idols had been destroyed, all images had been effaced, and all vestiges of polytheism had been obliterated, Muhammad, the Messenger of God, ordered Bilal to call out Adhan. Bilal called Adhan and the valley of Makkah rang out with his rich and sonorous takbir. The Prophet then made the seven circuits of the Kaaba, and offered prayer of thanksgiving to his Creator.

In the meantime, the Quraysh had gathered in the court of the Kaaba awaiting the Prophet. They hoped that he would give them audience before giving a verdict on their fate.

Presently the Prophet appeared at the threshold of the Kaaba. He surveyed the crowd in front of him and addressed it as follows:

“There is no god but Allah. He is One and all Alone, and He has no partners. All praise and thanks to Him. He has fulfilled His promise. He has helped His slave to victory, and He has dispersed the gangs of his enemies.

‘O people! Listen to me. All the arrogance, the distinctions, the pride, and all the claims of blood of the Times of Ignorance are under my feet today.

‘O Quraysh! Allah has destroyed the arrogance of the Times of Ignorance, and He has destroyed the pride of race. All men are the children of Adam, and Adam was a handful of dust.”

The Prophet then read the following verse from Qur’an:

O People! We created you from a male and a female and distributed you among tribes and families for the facility of reference only. But in the sight of God only those people have a place of honor who are God-fearing and God-loving. Verily, God is knowledgeable and understanding. (Chapter 49; verse 13)

This verse is the Magna Carta of the equality and brotherhood of all men in Islam. There cannot be any distinction between men on the grounds of race, colour, nationality, family or wealth. But whereas Islam destroys all other distinctions, it upholds a distinction of its own, and that is the distinction of faith and character.

Muhammad then posed a question to the Quraysh: “How do you think, I am going to treat you now?” They said: “You are a generous brother, and the son of a generous brother. We expect only charity and forgiveness from you.” He said: “I will tell you what Joseph said to his brothers, ‘There is no blame on you today.’ (Qur’an. Chapter 12; verse 92). Go now; all of you are my freedmen.”

The Prophet declared a general amnesty in Makkah. The amnesty extended even to the apostates. He forbade his army to plunder the city or to seize anything that belonged to the Quraysh. Quraysh had left nothing undone to compass his destruction, and the destruction of Islam; but in his hour of triumph, he condoned all their crimes and transgressions.

The Quraysh, at first, were incredulous. They could not believe their own ears. How could Muhammad resist the temptation to kill them all, after all that they had done to him in more than two decades, and especially now that he had so much power in his hand? The unwillingness of Muhammad to use his power was something that utterly surpassed the comprehension of the polytheists of Makkah. Considerable time passed before the meaning of the intent of Muhammad sank into their minds, and the amnesty began to look possible and real to them.

The aim of Muhammad, the Apostle of Peace, was to capture Makkah without bloodshed, and in this he was successful. It was here that he revealed himself, in the words of Al-Qur’an al-Majid “a mercy for all mankind.”

History cannot furnish an example of such forbearance. Not only the pagans were not exterminated; not only they did not have to pay any penalty for their crimes of the past; they were not even disturbed in the possession of the houses which the Muhajireen had left in Makkah, and which they had occupied.

From the Kaaba, the Prophet went to Mount Safa, and the people of Makkah came to acknowledge him as their sovereign in his dual character – as Messenger of God, and as their temporal ruler. All men gave the pledge of their loyalty to Muhammad by placing their hands on his hand. Next came the turn of women to take the oath of loyalty. But he did not want to touch the hand of any woman who was not his wife. He, therefore, ordered Umar bin al-Khattab to accept the pledge of women on his behalf.


Sir John Glubb


The Apostle then ordered Umar ibn al-Khattab to accept the oaths of women. The Great Arab Conquests)

When oath-taking was over, the Messenger of God addressed himself to the new political and administrative problems arising out of the conquest of Makkah.

The fascinating, complex story that had begun on February 12, 610, in the cave of Hira, had climaxed on February 11, 630, in the court of Kaaba. It was a day of emotion, promise and ceremony, and a day rich in history, significance, and symbolism. The aspiration that had seemed hopeless in 620 in Ta’if, had become an accomplished fact in 630 in Makkah.

The Quraysh had carried on a long and bitter struggle against Islam for twenty years but many among them now could see that the idols which they worshipped as their gods and goddesses, were utterly useless things. They, therefore, accepted Islam. Among them, there were both kinds of proselytes: a few who had been convinced that Muhammad was the true messenger of God, and they acknowledged him as such.

But there were many others who accepted Islam because they had very little to choose from. They realized that it was no use bucking the tide, and they also sensed that it was not such a bad bargain after all to declare themselves Muslims, and they did, with what reservations, was a question to be answered by the future alone.

All members of the clan of Banu Umayya, including Hinda, the wife of Abu Sufyan and the cannibal of Uhud, also “accepted” Islam.

Here one may pause to reflect on the “acceptance” of Islam by the Banu Umayya. A man can surrender to the enemy because of fear, and fear can also seal his mouth. Fear can do many things but there is one thing it cannot do – it cannot change hatred into love. For twenty years, Banu Umayya had spearheaded the pagan opposition to Islam. They waged economic, political, military and psychological war against its Prophet, and against his followers.

Now to imagine that one demonstration of military might by Muhammad “convinced” them that he was the true messenger of God, would be too much to expect from human nature. The demonstration of might by the Muslims did not change the hatred, resentment and bitterness of the Banu Umayya into love and sweetness, especially at a time when Islam deprived them not only of the idols they worshipped as their deities but also deprived them of their prestige, privileges, status and power. They had, therefore, the same state of mind that every defeated nation has. Their hearts were full of hatred, rancor and vindictiveness against the guardians of Islam.

The Banu Umayya accepted Islam in the reflexive recoil from the collapse of the whole pagan effort in Makkah. Their efforts to rescue the past, and their struggle to maintain their links to paganism as pagans had failed but perhaps they could try to do the same thing as Muslims. The champions of the idols, therefore, entered the ranks of the believers disguised as Muslims. This made them much more dangerous than before when their opposition to Islam had been overt.

At the moment, however, they went “underground” and marked time awaiting an opportunity to surface when they would destroy Islam, if possible; but if not, then they would change its distinguishing characteristics, and would restore as many institutions of the Times of Ignorance as possible.

The Banu Umayya could not subvert Islam in the lifetime of Muhammad, the Messenger of God, because he took effective safeguards against the recrudescence of paganism. He was alert at all times, and they could not spring a surprise upon him. He also took care not to give them any positions of authority which they might use as a base for their self-aggrandizement.

Some historians have claimed that the Prophet was eager to enlist the Banu Umayya in the service of Islam since they had many rare skills and talents. Von Grunebaum, for example, writes:

Muhammad for his part needed the experience of the Meccan ruling class; the expansion of the umma and above all its fundamental organization could not be administered without the help of the men of the city. (Classical Islam  A History 600-1258, 1970)

This is one of those claims which cannot be upheld against scrutiny. There is no evidence that the Prophet ever put the “experience” of the Banu Umayya to any use. Equally fatuous is the claim that the expansion of the umma and its fundamental organization could not be administered without them. If the Banu Umayya had the abilities attributed to them, why they didn’t put them to use in their cynical war against Muhammad and Islam, and why were they defeated?

Muhammad, the Messenger of God, created and consolidated the Islamic State in the teeth of the Umayyad opposition. The Islamic State could not coexist with the pagan oligarchy of Makkah which was headed by the Banu Umayya, and he had to destroy it. He was not impressed by their “abilities” before or after their acceptance of Islam, and he did not appoint any of them as a general or an administrator or a judge or anything. This component of his policy toward them could not be more explicit.

Some Sunni historians have pointed out that the Prophet appointed Muawiya, the son of Abu Sufyan and Hinda, his “scribe” to record the Qur’anic verses. Muawiya may have written down some verses of Qur’an but it does not mean that they could not be recorded without him.

There were many scribes available to the Prophet. In the first place, when Muawiya became a Muslim, most of the Qur’an had already been revealed, and there was little, if anything, for him to write. In the second place, he was only one out of a multitude of scribes. If writing the verses of Qur’an is a “distinction” for him, then he shares it with many other copyists.

After all, Abdullah bin Saad bin Abi Sarh, the foster-brother of Uthman bin Affan was also a scribe. He distorted the verses of Qur’an as he wrote them down. The Prophet declared him to be an apostate. He was going to be executed but was saved by Uthman. The Prophet banished him from Medina.

Muawiya’s skill as a scribe, therefore, was not one that was in short supply at the court of the Medina. The historians have preserved the names of 29 scribes of the Prophet.

Nevertheless, the statement of Von Grunebaum quoted above, would, in effect, be correct, if it is slightly modified to read that it was not the Prophet of Islam but Abu Bakr and Umar who needed the experience and the expertise of the Banu Umayya, and it were both of them who could not administer the new state without their support. The Banu Umayya were indispensable for Abu Bakr and Umar. The story of the revival of the Banu Umayya during the caliphates of Abu Bakr and Umar is told in another chapter.

The Prophet did, however, try to mollify the Umayyads with dowsers in the hope that they would shed their hostility to Islam, and some day, they themselves or their children would become sincere Muslims. But his efforts were fruitless. Nothing that he did for them, ever softened their hearts toward Islam. They never acquired a sense of identity with Islam or an allegiance to it. They were emotionally, constitutionally and ideologically unable to come to terms with it. Only by failing to achieve their aims by the sword, did they recognize the virtues and accept the mandate of peace. But for them, only the means had changed, not the end.

The day Abu Sufyan; his wife Hinda, their son Muawiya, and other members of the clan of Umayya, accepted Islam, the Trojan Horse of polytheism also entered the fortress of Islam. Ali ibn Abi Talib, the philosopher of Islam, summed up the nature of the conversion of the Banu Umayya to Islam as follows:

“Banu Umayya have not become true believers. They have only submitted to a superior force.”

In giving this verdict upon the conversion of the Banu Umayya to Islam, Ali was paraphrasing the following verse from the Book of God:

The Arabs say: ‘We have adopted the Faith (amanna)’. Say (to them): “Faith ye have not. Rather say: ‘We have become Muslim (aslamna). For Faith has not yet entered your hearts.’“ (Chapter 49; verse 15)

The Prophet of Islam spent a fortnight in Makkah educating the newly converted Makkans into Islam, and in organizing the government of that city. He had “de-contaminated” the Kaaba, and the Muslims were now in possession of a city which was the social, political, cultural, commercial and religious hub of Arabia. All the Arab tribes now recognized the authority of his government as paramount.

The Prophet consolidated the new acquisitions of territories between Makkah and Medina and the areas around Makkah. He then set to work to reorganize the Arab society. In the past, the Arabs had familiarity only with basic tribal and kinship structures in their social organization but now they had become a “nation” (umma) under his leadership.

Their loyalties as Muslims, did not take into account racial origins, tribal affiliations, national or linguistic attachments or even geographical boundaries. The loyalties of the Muslims transcended all natural barriers and man-made distinctions. They had to give their new loyalty to the Community of the Faithful which acknowledged God as One, and Muhammad as His Messenger.

Many tribes around Makkah were still heathen, and the Prophet wanted to invite them to Islam. Also, there were other tribes which had accepted Islam but had not paid their taxes to the State treasury, and he wished to remind them to pay those dues. He, therefore, sent missionaries and tax-collectors in various directions, with specific instructions on their duties, responsibilities and powers.

One of these tax-collectors was Khalid bin al-Walid. The Prophet sent him to the tribe of Banu Jadhima to collect unpaid taxes but he overstepped his authority, and stained his hands with innocent Muslim blood!


Muhammad ibn Ishaq


Khalid’s expedition after the conquest of Makkah to the B. Jadhima of Kinana and Ali’s expedition to repair Khalid’s error.

Hakim told me that the Apostle summoned Ali and told him to go to these people and look into the affair, and abolish the practices of the pagan era. So Ali went to them with the money the Apostle had sent and paid the bloodwit and made good their monetary loss. When all blood and property had been paid for he still had some money left over. He asked if any compensation was still due and when they said it was not, he gave them the rest of the money on behalf of the Apostle. Then he returned and reported to the Apostle what he had done and he commended him. Then the Apostle arose and facing the Qibla, raised his arms, and said: O God! I am innocent before Thee of what Khalid has done. This he did thrice.

Khalid and Abdur Rahman b. Auf had sharp words about this matter. The latter said to him: “You have done a pagan act in Islam.” Khalid said that he had only avenged Abdur Rahman’s father. He answered that he was a liar because he himself had killed his father’s slayer; but Khalid had taken vengeance for his uncle so that there was bad feeling between them.

Hearing of this the Apostle said (to Khalid): “Leave my companions alone, for by God if you had a mountain of gold and spent it for God’s sake, you would not approach the merit of my companions.” (The Life of the Prophet)


Washington Irving


On a certain mission (on his way to Tehama) Khalid bin Waleed had to pass through the country of the tribe of Jadsima. He had with him 350 men and was accompanied by Abdur Rahman, one of the earliest proselytes of the faith. His instructions from the Prophet were to preach peace and goodwill, to inculcate the faith, and to abstain from violence, unless assailed.

Most of the tribe of Jadsima had embraced Islam but some were still of the Sabean religion. On a former occasion this tribe had plundered and slain an uncle of Khalid, also the father of Abdur Rahman, as they were returning from Arabia Felix. Dreading that Khalid and his host might take vengeance for those misdeeds, they armed themselves on their approach.

Khalid secretly rejoiced at seeing them ride forth to meet him in this military array. Hailing them with an imperious tone, he demanded whether they were Moslems or infidels. They replied in faltering accents, “Moslems.” “Why then come ye forth to meet us with weapons in your hand?” “Because we have enemies among some of the tribes who may attack us unawares,” they said.

Khalid sternly ordered them to dismount and lay by their weapons. Some complied, and were instantly seized and bound; the rest fled. Taking their flight as a confession of guilt, he pursued them with great slaughter; laid waste the country, and in the effervescence of his zeal even slew some of the prisoners.

Mohammed, when he heard of this unprovoked outrage, raised his hands to heaven, and called God to witness that he was innocent of it. Khalid when upbraided with it on his return, would fain have shifted the blame on Abdur Rahman, but Mohammed rejected indignantly any imputation against one of the earliest and worthiest of his followers. The generous Ali was sent forthwith to restore to the people of Jadsima what Khalid had wrested from them, and to make pecuniary compensation to the relatives of the slain.

It was a mission congenial with Ali’s nature, and he executed it faithfully. Inquiring into the losses and sufferings of each individual, he paid him to his full content. When every loss was made good, and all blood atoned for, he distributed the remaining money among the people, gladdening every heart by his bounty.

So Ali received the thanks and praises of the Prophet, but the vindictive Khalid was rebuked even by those whom he had thought to please. “Behold!” said he to Abdur Rahman, “I have avenged the death of your father.” “Rather say,” replied the other indignantly, “thou hast avenged the death of thine uncle. Thou has disgraced the faith by an act worthy of an idolater.” (The Life of Mohammed)


Sir John Glubb


After the occupation of Mecca, emissaries were sent to the surrounding tribes to urge them to destroy their local idols and pagan shrines. One such party was commanded by Khalid bin Waleed, the victor of Uhud. Khalid was a highly successful fighter but a headstrong, violent and bloodthirsty man. He was sent to Beni Jadheema clan of Beni Kinana, on the coastal plain south-west of Mecca.

By a tragic coincidence, these Beni Jadheema had killed Khalid’s uncle many years before, when he was returning from a business trip to the Yemen. The Apostle, who was probably unaware that Khalid had a private feud with the people he was sent to convert, had told him to avoid bloodshed.

When he reached Beni Jadheema, Khalid told them to lay down their arms as the war was over and everyone had now accepted Islam. When they had done so, however, he suddenly seized a number of the men, tied their hands behind their backs, and gave orders that they be beheaded, as satisfaction for the murder of his uncle.

An Arab horseman who was with Khalid’s force, subsequently told how a young man of Beni Jadheema, his hands tied, asked him to allow him to speak to some women who were standing a little way apart. The Muslim agreed and led the prisoner across to the women. “Goodby, Hubaisha,” the youth said to a girl among them, “my life is at an end now.” But she cried out, “No, no, may your life be prolonged for many years to come.” The prisoner was led back and immediately decapitated. As he fell, the girl broke away from the group of women and ran to him. Bending over him, she covered him with kisses, refusing to let go until they killed her also.

The Apostle was genuinely horrified when he heard of Khalid’s action. Standing in the courtyard of Kaaba, he raised his hands above his head and cried aloud: “O God! I am innocent before Thee of what Khalid has done.” Ali was sent immediately with a large sum of cash to pay blood-money for all who had been killed, and generous compensation for any losses of property. (The Life and Times of Mohammed, 1970, p. 320)


 Muhammad Husayn Haykal


Muhammad resided in Makkah fifteen days during which he organized its affairs and instructed its people in Islam. During this period, he sent forth delegations to call men peaceably to Islam to destroy the idols without shedding any blood. Khalid ibn al-Walid was sent to Nakhlah to destroy al-Uzza, goddess of Banu Shayban. His task accomplished, ibn al-Walid proceeded to Jadhimah.

There, however, the people took up arms at his approach. Khalid asked them to lay down their arms on the grounds that all people had accepted Islam. One of the Jadhimah tribesmen said to his people: “Woe to you, Banu Jadhimah! Don’t you know that this is Khalid? By God, nothing awaits you once you have laid down your arms except captivity, and once you have become captives, you can expect nothing but death.” Some of his people answered: “Do you seek to have us all murdered? Don’t you know that most men have converted to Islam, that the war is over, and that security is reestablished?” Those who held this opinion continued to talk to their tribesmen until the latter surrendered their arms.

Thereupon, ibn al-Walid ordered them to be bound, and he killed some of them. When he heard the news, the Prophet lifted his arms to heaven and prayed:”O God! I condemn what Khalid ibn al-Walid has done.”

The Prophet gave funds to Ali ibn Abi Talib and sent him to look into the affairs of this tribe, cautioning him to disregard all the customs of pre-Islam. Upon arrival, Ali paid the blood-wit of all the victims and compensated the property owners for their damages.

Before leaving, he surrendered the rest of the money which the Prophet had given him to the tribe just in case there were any other losses which may have escaped notice at the time. (The Life of Muhammad, Cairo, 1935)

The demarche that Muhammad Mustafa, the Messenger of God, made toward Banu Jadhima, through Ali, was absolutely essential. Khalid had killed people who were not only Muslim but also were innocent of all guilt. Failure to make amends for his crimes would have earned for the Muslims a reputation not only for senseless cruelty and wanton abuse of power but also for treachery.

The pagans and those Arabs who could be called Muslims, at this early date, only by courtesy, would, inevitably, have linked the foul deeds of Khalid with the Prophet himself. There was even the danger that they would have repudiated Islam and relapsed into idolatry, just to spite Khalid. The Prophet, therefore, went into Kaaba, and thrice denounced Khalid’s act, and called upon Heaven to be a Witness that he bore no responsibility for it.

The Banu Jadhima were left stripped and utterly broken by Khalid. The Prophet wanted not only to comfort them and to rehabilitate them but also to win back their confidence and love. It was a most difficult and delicate task, and he chose Ali to carry it out. Khalid had tarnished the image of Islam, and the Prophet knew that no one among his companions except Ali had the ability to restore to it its pristine sheen.

Ali proved once again that his master could not have chosen anyone better than him for this sensitive assignment, and he demonstrated once again that if he was the first in war, he was also the first in peace. He astonished and enchanted the Banu Jadhima with his sincerity, his generosity, his friendliness, and his genuine solicitude for their happiness and welfare.

With his quality of address, Ali recaptured the hearts of Banu Jadhima for his master, Muhammad Mustafa, and for Islam. This was a role that was “custom-designed” for him to play. He loved this role more than any other. He loved to dress the psychological wounds of other people, and he loved to bring cheer and comfort to broken hearts. He was endowed with a very special flair to carry through a role like this.


 Contents of the Surah


This Surah is the last revealed Surah in the chronological Qur’an, and the 110th Surah in the traditional order with three verses, and it was revealed at Medina after the migration of the Prophet (S) from Mecca to Medina. It contains the glad tidings of a great victory for Islam, after which, people, in droves, flocked to the banner of Islam. Then thank God for that great gift, the Holy Prophet (S) is invited to ‘glorify’ and ‘praise’ God, and to pray for His ‘forgiveness’. There were many victories for Islam, but no triumph was as important as the bloodless conquest of Mecca, especially the Arabs believed, according to some narrations, that if the Prophet of Islam (S) could conquer and capture Mecca, then, it was a sign of his legitimacy because if he were not right, God would not let him do so, as He did not allow Abrahah and his great force to destroy the Ka’ba. It was for this reason that the Arab pagans entered Islam, in groups, after the conquest of Mecca.

The majority of exegetes agree that al-Naṣr is a late Madinan sūrah. It is most likely the last sūrah to have been revealed in its entirety, although a few verses from al-Baqarah (Sūrah 2), al-Nisāʾ (Sūrah 4), al-Tawbah (Sūrah 9), and perhaps al-Māʾidah (Sūrah 5) are believed to have been revealed after it. Some maintain that this sūrah was revealed at the plain of Minā, which lies between. ʿArafat and Makkah, on the tenth of Dhu’l-Ḥijjah, during the Prophet’s Farewell Pilgrimage, the day after 5:3 had been revealed, while others argue that it was revealed just before 5:3.

Still others maintain that it was revealed in Madinah after the Prophet had returned from the Farewell Pilgrimage. The majority of those who maintain that it was revealed in Madinah and those who maintain that it was revealed during the Farewell Pilgrimage agree that 2:281 was revealed after it; some say that 4:176 and 9:128 were revealed in the interval between al-Naṣr and 2:281, while others maintain that only 2:281 was revealed after al-Naṣr .

A minority maintain that this sūrah was revealed after the Treaty of Ḥudaybiyah in 6/628.

According to al-Wāḥidī, it was revealed when the Prophet left for the Battle of Ḥunayn in 8/630. The Prophet lived for only two years after this battle. Ibn ʿAbbās is reported to have said, “When the Messenger of God returned from the battle of Ḥunayn and God revealed When God’s Help and Victory come, he said, ‘O ʿAlī ibn Abī Ṭālib! O Fāṭimah! God’s Help and Victory have come. I have seen people entering the religion of God in throngs. I therefore hymn the praises of my Lord and seek forgiveness of Him, for He is Ever Relenting.’” According to Ibn ʿAbbās, through this sūrah the Prophet was informed that his death was near. For this reason, Ibn Masʿūd has said that it is called “The Farewell Sūrah”. [1]

Some have said that this Surah was revealed alongside the ‘Hudaybiyyah Peace’; six years after migration and two years before the conquest of Mecca.

But, it is completely improbable to say, (as some have said), that it was revealed at the time of the farewell Pilgrimage after the conquest of Mecca, in the year 10 A.H. because, the ideas involved in the Surah, which inform of the incidents regarding the future, not the past, do not fit with this meaning.

One of the names of this Surah is “At-Taudi’” (التوديع) ‘leave-taking’,” because it implicitly implicates the death of the Prophet (S).

A tradition indicates that when this Surah was revealed and the Holy Prophet (S) recited it to the followers, they all became happy, but Abbas, the uncle of the holy Prophet (S), began shedding tears. The Holy Prophet (S) asked him why he was crying. He answered that he supposed the Surah contained the implication of the Prophet’s demise. And He (S) said: “It is so, my uncle” [2]

The commentators are divided on how this meaning is understood, from the Surah, when there is nothing apparent in it to imply the idea. The Surah is wholly about the victory, and it seems that the Prophetic mission of the Holy Prophet (S) is completely fulfilled and his religion is fixed. It is clear that in such a case the departure of the Prophet (S) from this fleeting world to the next, eternal world, is completely predictable.


The Virtue of Studying this Surah


A tradition from the Holy Prophet (S) says:

“He who recites it (Surah Nasr), it is the same as if he had been with the Messenger of God (S) at the conquest of Mecca”. [3]


Another tradition from Imam Sadiq (as) says:

“He who recites Surah Nasr in his optional or obligatory prayers, God makes him successful in defeating his enemies, totally, and on the Day of Judgement he will come with a letter which talks. Verily God has brought him out of his grave with that letter as an immunity from the heat and fire of Hell…” [4]


It is clear that this virtue and honour is for the person who, with reciting it, follows the way of the Messenger of God (S) and practices his religion and his tradition, not only suffices its recitation with the tongue.


1.“When there comes the help of God and victory”,
2.“And you see people entering God’s religion in multitudes”,
3.“Then celebrate the praise of your Lord and seek His forgiveness, (for) surely He is ever ready to show mercy”.


God’s victory Brings Multitudes to God’s Religion


“When there comes the help of God and victory”,

“And you see people entering God’s religion in multitudes”.

“Then celebrate the praise of your Lord and seek His forgiveness, (for) surely He is ever ready to show mercy”.


In these three short, but, expressive verses, there are some elegant, elaborations whose careful observation helps us to understand the final goal of the Surah. In the first verse, it says that the victory belongs to God.


It is not only in this occurrence that this meaning is mentioned, but, in many other verses of the Qur’an the idea is reflected, including Surah Baqarah, No. 2, verse 214:

 

 

“…Ah! Verily the help of God is, (always) near!”;

 

 

and Surah Al-‘Imran, No. 3, verse 126; and also, Surah Anfal, No. 8, verse 10, says:

 

 

“…there is no help except from God…”


 It is true that preparation and supplying forces are necessary for defeating the enemy, but a believing person knows the victory comes only from God, and for the same reason when victory comes, he does not become deluded or proud, but thanks and praises God…

In this Surah, the words are about, at first, the help of God, then, the victory, and then, the influence and spread of Islam, and finally, the entering of people, in groups, into the religion of God. All of them are causes and effects for each other.


Many commentators read this verse in the past tense, in which case Victory is taken as an allusion to the conquest of Makkah in 8/630 which some Muslims believe was foreshadowed in Deuteronomy 33:2 and Song of Solomon 5:10). Others read it as an allusion to the Treaty of Ḥudaybiyah in 6/628 (see the introduction to Sūrah 48).

When read in the future tense, this verse is seen by many as an allusion to the conquests by which Islam spread beyond the borders of Arabia after the death of the Prophet. It also has a continuous meaning, as attaining Paradise is the final victory. In this vein, al-Baqlī writes, “The Victory (fatḥ) is the opening (infitāḥ) of the doors of arrival and the unveiling of the lights of Beauty and Majesty.”

Some say that mankind indicates the Arabs in general; others say it indicates a large group from Yemen who had recently accepted Islam. When the sūrah is taken as a reference to the conquest of Makkah, it denotes the many tribes that had been reluctant to enter Islam as long as the Prophet’s own city remained beyond his dominion. Then when it was conquered, this final obstacle was removed, and they entered Islam in throngs. Before the conquest, people had entered one or two at a time, sometimes a few more, but afterwards tribes from all regions of Arabia entered in masses.


Victory is absent unless there is the help of God, and people do not enter Islam in multitudes unless there is triumph and victory in order to remove the barriers and hindrances from the way. Of course, along with these stages, each of which is a great, divine blessing, the stage of being thankful and praising God; comes forth.

On the other hand, the help of God; and the victory are all for the final goal, i.e., people entering God’s religion in multitudes, and guidance for all.

Victory, here is stated in general, and with some evidences that were mentioned before, the purpose is, undoubtedly, the conquest of Mecca which had such a wide effect and verily, the conquest of Mecca introduced a new chapter in the history of Islam, because the main centre of polytheism was disturbed; idols were destroyed; the hope of the idol worshippers changed into disappointment; and the barriers in the way of people’s faith in Islam were removed. Materialism was completely destroyed.

That is why the conquest of Mecca should be considered as a stage of the settlement of Islam in Arabia and then, in the world. It was after the conquest of Mecca that no opposition from the pagans was seen (except once, which was quickly controlled) and people from all parts of Arabia came to the Holy Prophet (S) to accept Islam.


There are three important instructions, in the verse, given to the holy Prophet (S) (and naturally to all believers) which are, in fact, a gratitude for this great victory and an appropriate response to the help of God: the instructions of celebrating, praising, and seeking His forgiveness.

 

This great victory caused the polytheistic thoughts to disappear; the perfection and beauty of God to become more clear; and those who had lost the right way to return to the truth.

Further, it is possible that at the time of victory, some disgraceful behaviour appears in a person and he becomes involved in pride and self-conceit or tries to take revenge and clear the personal accounts against his enemy.


These three instructions train him ‘to remember the attributes of perfection and the beauty of God at the sensitive moments of victory’; and ‘to know all of the effects from Him’; and ‘to seek His forgiveness in order to both remove pride and negligence from himself; and avoid revengefulness’.

It is certain that the Holy Prophet (S) of Islam, like all other Prophets (Peace be upon him) were sinless; then what is the instruction of seeking His forgiveness for?

To answer this question, it should be said that this is a model for the whole community, and on the part of a sinless, infallible one like the Holy Prophet (S) and his Ahlul-Bait (AS) who have already been purified by the Lord, Himself [5] will mean seeking further grace and greater blessings or further protection of the Lord against the forces of Satan.


Here, “ Istighfar” (استغفار) means that the Holy Prophet’s was beseeching the protection of the Lord, for himself and his followers, against the forces of evil, and seeking pardon of the Lord on behalf of his faithful adherents who, might have been prey of human weakness, as did Moses for his people who had yielded to the worship of the calf.

The phrase “innahu kana tawwaba” ‘surely, He is ever ready to show mercy’ is the statement of reason in proportion to ‘seeking forgiveness’, that is, seek forgiveness and repent because God is ever accepting of repentance.


By the way, it may also refer to the meaning that ‘when God accepts your repentance, you, too, should accept the repentance of the guilty after victory, as far as you can, and do not repulse them from yourselves as long as there is no sign of offence or plot coming from them.’ So, the Holy Prophet (S), himself, on the event of the conquest of Mecca, showed the feature of Islamic grace and mercy to his defeated, hostile enemies at its highest standard.

It was not only the Holy Prophet (S) who celebrated God’s grace and glory on his final victory against his enemies, but all prophets throughout history also did so.

For example, when Joseph (as) became exalted in Egypt and his parents and his brothers succeeded in seeing him after a very long time, he said:

 

“O my Lord! You have indeed bestowed on me some power and taught me something of the interpretation of dreams and events, O you Creator of the heavens and the earth! You are my Protector in the world and in the Hereafter. Take you my soul as one submitting to your Will, and unite me with the righteous.[6]

 

 

Or, when Solomon (as) saw the throne of Bilqis (Queen of Sheba) ready before him, he said:

 

 

“…this is by the grace of my Lord! -to test me whether I am grateful or ungrateful!…”.[7]


 The conquest of Mecca was the greatest victory. After that conquest, whole tribes from all parts of Arabia gave their allegiance to the Holy Prophet (S), collectively, and before his earthly ministry was finished, the ground was prepared for the introduction of Islam to the world.

What was the lesson to be learned from this episode in world history? It was not about Man’s self-glory, but humility; not power, but, service; not an appeal to Man’s selfishness or self-sufficiency, but, a realization of God’s Grace and Mercy, and the abundant outpouring of God’s Praises in word and conduct.


According to some, the meaning of hymn the praise in this verse is “pray”. This may follow from the fact that Muslims, following the wont of the Prophet, recite various formulas of praise and glory during both the bowing and the prostrations of prayer, formulas such as “Glory be to Thee, O God, our Lord, and praise unto Thee, our Lord. O God, forgive me”. In general, the verb sabbaḥa, translated throughout as glorify or glorifies (e.g., 57:1; 59:1; 61:1; 62:1), when combined with ḥamd (“praise”) as hymn the praise (lit. “glorify the praise”; cf. 15:98; 20:130; 32:15; 40:7, 55; 42:5; 50:39; 52:48), indicates the recognition that God is beyond all that anyone can attribute to Him (see 57:1c).

The Divine Name “the Relenting” is also coupled with the Merciful in several verses (see 2:37, 54, 128, 160; 4:16, 64; 9:104, 118; 49:12). God is portrayed as relenting unto human beings throughout human history, beginning with Adam and Eve (see 2:37c), and every revelation can be seen as a form of God’s relenting. The word for human repentance and for Divine relenting are the same in Arabic (tawbah; verbal form tāba/yatūbu). It thus represents a subtle reciprocity between Divine action and human action, as in 5:39: But whosoever repents (tāba) after his wrongdoing, and makes amends, God will relent (yatūbu) unto him. Though human beings can play some role in seeking their own forgiveness, ultimately it is God Who must first turn to human beings, as in 9:118: Then He relented unto them, that they might repent; see 2:37c.


Reflection #2


It is very important to examine Islamic history very carefully. Especially when it comes to Sirah. Ibn Ishaq’s sirah was written under the Ummayad empire, which is a kingdom that hates Ahlulbayt (A), and whoever hates Ahlulbayt (A) : the Prophet (S) has then described him or her as a hypocrite, and one of the signs of a hypocrite is that he or she is lying when she speaks, and all this is detailed in the hadiths of our Holy prophet (S). Almost all the traditions of sirah, especially when it comes to the conquest of Mecca, go back to Ibn Ishaq. Ibn Ishaq took inspiration from Ibn Shihab Az-Zuhri who is a Nasibi (hater of Imam Ali), Az-Zuhri from Urwa bin Zubayr, Urwa Ibn Zubayr is the son of Zubayr Ibn Awwam who was the companion of ‘Aisha : who fought Imam Ali (A), and who hated the Imam (A) with a boiling hatred of her chest!

That is why the Qur’an is the best source if you want to study all Islamic sciences. Today you have many Islamic schools that focus a lot on everything besides the Holy Qur’an. Everything has become so superficial when it comes to Islamic sciences. It is very important to study the Qur’an from both Shia and Sunni sources.

It is also very important to be critical of Sirah written by people who lived under the Nasibi umbrella, who controlled the literature at that time. I myself saw it very illogical to, for example, from Ibn Ishaq’s Sirah, that the Prophet (S) would be the first to forgive Abu Sufyan, Ikrimah Ibn Abi Jahl, Hind the wife of Abu Sufyan and Wahshi who were the four biggest terrorists of Mecca, and that the Prophet (S) would not, for example, forgive Abdullah Ibn Khattal, Muqis or Huwayrith whom I don’t even know who they are. Totally anonymous ‘criminals’ of Arabia. I believe in the view and the opinion that the Prophet (S) arrived to Mecca, liberated Mecca and forgave ALL the citizens of Meccan. If there is someone who deserves the death penalty, then it is Abu Sufyan, without a doubt. Even the Army of Satan in the end of time will be called “The Sufyani Army”.


Abu Sufyan is the Satan of this Nation:

 

 

  • He laughed at the Prophet of God (S) when he called him to and a number of the nobles of Quraish to Islam.

 

 

  • He was one of those who tried to have the Prophet (S) killed.

 

 

  • One of the foremost people responsible for all the major battles that were led against the Prophet (S).

 

 

  • Enforced an economic and trade blockade on the Muslims in Mecca in an attempt to starve them into submission.

 

 

  • Caused the Prophet (S) and his noble family (A) and companions to flee from Mecca.

 

 

  • Played a leading role in the torture and abuse of many of the noble companions of the Prophet (i.e. Bilal and Ammar b. Yassir (ra).

 

 

  • After the battle of Uhud, when his wife cut the honourable body of Hamza (ra) open and attempted to eat his liver, Abu Sufyan pierced a spear through Hamza’s neck and said: “This battle is under the leadership of Abu Sufyan and any injury to Muhammad and his followers has been at my hand.”

 

 

  • Hired a killer to have the Prophet (S) slain while praying in the mosque in Medina.

 

 

  • Swore never to sleep with any of his wives until he had killed the Holy Prophet (S)

 

 

  • Attempted to make failed pacts with the Jews and Romans against the Muslims.

 

 

  • Supposedly “submitted” to Islam only when he realised that all of his efforts had failed and that there was no more hope, and in fear of his personal safety and security. He did this because he was aware of the deep and merciless injustice that he had done to the Prophet (S) and the Muslims.

 

 

  • This Ummah has become an Ummah that follows the religion of Abu Sufyan, the Sunnah of Omar and the politics of Bani Umayya.

Secondly, Mecca is a place of sanctity and peace. You can’t fight in Mecca, you can’t hunt in Mecca, you can’t even cut trees in Mecca etc. Mecca is a place of peace, tranquillity and purity. You can not do anything unpeaceful in Mecca as a Muslim.

Some fights and battles may have occurred outside the city of Mecca, but never that the Prophet (S) would spill a single drop of blood in Mecca. Never ever. All kinds of violence were made to defend themselves and the people. Mecca was liberated. Why do we call it a conquest, when the Prophet (S) freed the oppressed and forgave exactly everyone in order to start over on a new blank sheet of history of a desire of peace and tranquillity!


The third reason is that the chapter of Surah An-Nasr itself instructs humility and seeking forgiveness. God does not say “Fassabih Bi Hamdi Rabbika Wa ‘Aqtul” (Glorfy the Praises of your Lord and then Kill). No! God says Fassabih Bi Hamdi Rabbika Wa Astaghfir (Glorify the Praises of your Lord and seek forgiveness).


The fourth reason is that God describes the Prophet (S) as a mercy to the worlds :

 

 

وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَاكَ إِلَّا رَحْمَةً لِّلْعَالَمِينَ

 

 

And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a mercy to the worlds.” (Quran: 21:107)


 وَرَحۡمَتِىۡ وَسِعَتۡ كُلَّ شَىۡءٍ

 

 

As for My mercy, it encompasses everything.

 

 

[Qur’an 7:156]


I remember chatting with a convert who converted from Christianity to Salafism, and she had learned to praise Abu Sufyan due to this event which was written by Ummayids. That is why you have to be critical, logical, realistic and reflective.


You should always know that God’s victory is always close. Just remember what Imam Ali (A) said when he was beaten with the sword of poison on his head: “By the Lord of Ka’aba, I have succeed”. You should always know that God’s victory is always close to those people in the darkest abysses.

It is the victory of God and the mercy of God that shines over the oppressed people, so that one never gets arrogant when one has won and succeeded in life. It is clear that one can celebrate his or her victory, but one must always remember that God is the cause of all light and victory in one’s eternal life.


The people will then enter Islam like flock groups. When people in a society see an ideology that is successful or a man who is successful, no matter how this man is from within, from the outside it may look very successful, but no matter what it is, people will automatically be attracted to this ideology or that person. We see the same phenomenon today when people always are willing to follow the stream of a society / ideology and ignore what the minority has to present.

Therefore ,one should always be reflective, rational and source critical when studying Islam. One should swim in divine glorifications, for Sabbih (سبح)  in Arabic is associated and connected to the word Sibbaha  (سباحة) ; which means swimming.

One should swim in the divine glorification that is linked to the remembrance of God, which leads to the humility of a human being.


The Hamd of a human being is linked to the famous phrase Alhamdulilah : All praise be to God, which is a statement and an expression of thankfulness. You should always be thankful as a human being when you have reached your different stages of success, victory and succour in your life. You should swim in the humility of glorification, thankfulness and forgiveness, which all are traits of humbleness and humility.

This is of course the spiritual goal of a human: to attain the perfection of humility so that this human being can grow from the soil of humility and humbleness to a peak of perfection and light.


God is always ready to show mercy to any of his creature and creation.


One should always practice these qualities of pure goodness. God gives instructions to anyone who wants to reach perfection in every occasion he or she goes through in life. Even though this man is in a state of victory, humbleness, gratitude, forgiveness and mercy are the most important traits to keep, so that you do not fall into traps of arrogance and pride, which are the root of all the traits of wretchedness we can think of.


Supplication

 

O Lord! You are able to give that glory back, again, to Muslims under the light of following the traditions of the Apostle.

 

O Lord! Set us among the true advocates of the Messenger of Islam.

 

O Lord! Bestow on us such a success that we can spread Islamic Justice in the world so that the people of the world eagerly accept it in multitudes.


| Amir Zabidi and Imam Ali foundation <3 


Further readings 


1. Ayatollah Ja’far As-Subhani, The Message, The Chapter of the Conquest of Mecca. 
2. Majma’ Al-Bayan By At-Tabrasi
3. Hayat Al-Qulub By Allamah Al-Majlisi, Volume 2, The Chapter of the Conquest of Mecca.
5. Tafsir Al-Mizan By Allamah Tabatabaei
6. Tafsir Namuneh By Ayatollah Makarem As-Shirazi
7. Tafsir As-Safi By Al-Kashaani
8. At-Tibyan Fi At-Tafsir Al-Qur’an By Shaykh At-Tusi
9. Tafsir Jami’ Al-Jawami’ By Al-Tabrasi
10. Tafsir Shibr 
11. Tafsir Al-Qummi 
12. Tafsir Furat Al-Kufi 
13. Tafsir min Wahy Al-Qur’an By Sayyed Muhammed Hussain Fadlallah
14. A restatement of the history of Islam and Muslims by Sayyid Ali Ashgar Razwy; the chapter of the Conquest of Mecca. 

 References


 [1] The Study Qur’an By Hossein Nasr, The Chapter of Surah An-Nasr

[2] Majma’-al-Bayan, vol. 10, p. 554. (also see Al-Mizan, vol. 20, p. 532. )

[3] Majma’-al-Bayan, vol. 10, p. 553.

[4] Majma’-al-Bayan, vol. 10, 553.

[5]  Qur’an 33:33

[6] Surah Yusuf, No. 12, verse 101

[7] Surah ‘Naml. No 27, verse 40


| REFLECTIONS ON THE CHAPTER OF VICTORY [110]

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