DEFENCE ASSOCIATED WITH SUCCESS AND RENEWED VICTORY
It will not be inappropriate if we give the name of 'renewed victory' to this part of the history of Islam. What is meant by this victory is that contrary to the expectations of the enemies, the Muslims succeeded in saving the Prophet from death. And this was the renewed victory which fell to the lot of the army of Islam.
If we are associating this victory with the entire army of Islam we are doing so as a mark of respect to the warriors of Islam. In fact, however, the heavy burden of this victory fell on the shoulders of a few persons who could be counted on fingers. These were the persons who protected the Prophet by risking their own lives and in fact it was due to the self-sacrifice of this minority that the State of Islam remained intact and this luminous candle did not extinguish.
Here is a brief account of the feats of these self-sacrificing persons:
1. The first constant and steadfast person was a brave officer, who had by then completed only twenty six years of his life, and who had been in attendance upon the Prophet since his very childhood up to the moment of the death of the Prophet and did not forsake self-sacrifice and assisting him even for a moment. This senior officer and real devotee was Imam Ali, the Chief of the Pious and the Commander of the Faithful, whose services and devotion to the cause of Islam has been recorded in history
Basically this renewed victory was achieved, like the first victory, by means of the valour and self-sacrifice of that devoted person, because it is evident that the cause of the flight of Quraysh in the initial stages of the battle was that their standard-bearers were killed, one after the other, at the hands of Ali and as a consequence of it the army of Quraysh became so much aghast that they lost their power of stay and resistance.
The contemporary Egyptian writers, who have analysed the events, have not done justice to Ali commensurate with his position or with the real facts recorded in history and have considered the services of the Commander of the Faithful to be at par with those of others. We, therefore, consider it necessary to give here a brief account of his devotion and the sacrifices made by him.
Ibn Athir says:"The Prophet became the object of the attack of various units of the army of Quraysh from all sides. Ali attacked, in compliance with the Prophet's orders, every unit that made an attack upon him (the Prophet) and dispersed them or killed some of them, and this thing took place a number of times in Uhud. In the meantime the Archangel Jibreel came and praised the devotion of Ali before the Prophet and said: 'It is the height of sacrifice which this officer is displaying'. The Prophet confirmed the remark of Jibreel and said 'I am from Ali and Ali is from me'. Then a voice was heard in the battlefield saying: La Saifa illa Zulfiqar, La Fata illa Ali (i.e. There is no sword which renders service except Zulfiqar (which was in the hands of Ali) and there is no brave man except Ali).
Ibn Abil Hadid has given a more detailed account of this event and says: "Everyone of the units which were trying to kill the Prophet consisted of fifty persons and although Ali was on foot he dispersed them all". Then he has given an account of the coming of Jibreel and says: "Besides the fact that this event is an admitted phenomenon from the viewpoint of history, I have read about the coming of Jibreel in Muhammad bin Ishaq's book entitled Kitabul Ghzawat and chanced to enquire one day about its authenticity from my teacher Abdul Wahhab Sakinah. He said: 'It is correct'. I then asked him: 'Why has this tradition not been mentioned by the compilers of the Sihah?' (the six authentic books of Hadith amongst Ahle Sunnat). He replied: 'We have a number of authentic traditions which the compilers of the Sihah have neglected to insert in their books".
In the detailed speech which Ali delivered for "Ra's al-Yahud" in the presence of a group of his own companions he refers to his sacrifices in these words: "....When the army of Quraysh attacked us like one single force the Ansar and the Muhajirs proceeded to their homes and I sustained seventy wounds defending the Prophet". Then he (Ali) drew aside his garment and pointed out the places where the signs of the wounds were still present. Moreover, as recorded in 'Ilalush Shara'i' Ali, while defending the Prophet, exhibited so much valour and self-sacrifice that his sword broke into two. The Prophet then gave him his own sword named Zulfiqar and with this sword he continued jihad in the path of Allah.
In his valuable book Ibn Hisham has mentioned the figure of those killed from amongst the idolaters to be twenty two and has also mentioned their names and particulars giving also the name of tribe etc. Out of these twenty two persons twelve were killed by Ali and the remaining ten were killed by other Muslims. The said biographer has mentioned clearly the names and particulars of those who were killed.
We admit that it has not been possible for us to depict in these pages the services rendered by Ali as mentioned in the books of both the sects and especially in the book entitled Biharul Anwar. It is learnt from the study of different narratives and traditions that in Uhud none was as constant as Ali and even Abu Dujanah who was a brave and valiant officer of Islam could not equal him in the matter of defence.
2. Abu Dujanah: After the Commander of the Faithful, Abu Dujanah was the second officer who defended the person of the Prophet in such a manner that he made himself a helmet for him. Arrows were settling on his back and he was thus protecting the Prophet from becoming their target.
The late Sipahr, has recorded a sentence about Abu Dujanah in his book entitled Nasikhut Tawarikh, it has not been possible for us to locate its source. He writes: When the Prophet and Ali were encircled by the idolaters the Prophet's eyes fell upon Abu Dujanah and he said to him: "O Abu Dujanah! I absolve you from your allegiance. However, Ali is mine and I am his". Abu Dujanah wept bitterly and said: "Where should I go? Should I go to my wife who has to die? Should I go to my house which will be ruined? Should I go to my wealth and property which will be destroyed? Should I run towards death which must come?"
When the Prophet saw tears in the eyes of Abu Dujanah he permitted him to fight and both he and Ali protected the Prophet from the severe attacks of Quraysh.
In the books on history we also come across the names of other persons like 'Asim bin Thabit, Sahl Hunayf, Talhah bin 'Ubaydullah etc. in the capacity of those who remained steadfast, and some historians have mentioned the number of such persons to be near thirty six. However, what is decisive from the viewpoint of history is the constancy of Ali, Abu Dujanah, Hamzah and the lady named Umme 'Amir and the constancy of those excepting these four persons is suspected and in some cases dubious.
3. Self-sacrifice of a brave officer: There have been a number of brave and self-sacrificing officers and strong and powerful champions in the army of Islam but the bravery of Hamzah bin Abdul Muttalib is recorded in the pages of history and in fact constitutes the golden leaves of the history of the battles of Islam.
Hamzah, the uncle of the Prophet of Islam, was one of the most brave men of Arabia and a well-known officer of Islam. It was he, who insisted earnestly that the army of Islam should go out of Madina and fight against Quraysh. It was Hamzah, who protected the Prophet in Makkah during the delicate moments with all his might and in order to avenge the insult and harm done to the Prophet by Abu Jahl, he broke, the latter's head in a big assembly of Quraysh and none dared to oppose him.
He was the same senior and valiant officer who killed the brave champion of Quraysh Shaybah and others and also wounded a group of the enemies in the Battle of Badr. He had no object in mind except to defend truth and virtue and to maintain freedom in the lives of human beings.
Hind, the wife of Abu Sufyan, was the daughter of 'Utbah. She nursed a grudge against Hamzah and was determined to take her father's revenge on the Muslims at any cost.
Wahshi, an Ethiopian warrior, was the slave of Jabir Mut'am and an uncle of Jabir had also been killed in the Battle of Badr. He (Wahshi) had been appointed by Hind to help achieve her object by hook or by crook. She asked him to kill one of the three persons (viz. the Prophet, Ali or Hamzah) so that she might avenge her father's death. The Ethiopian warrior said in reply: "I cannot approach Muhammad at all, because his companions are nearer to him than anyone else. Ali too is extraordinarily vigilant in the battlefield. However, Hamzah is so furious that, while fighting, he does not pay any attention to any other side and it is possible that I may be able to make him fall by some trick or by taking him unawares". Hind was contented with this and promised that if he was successful in performing the job she would set him free. Some believe that Jabir made this promise with his slave (Wahshi) as his (Jabir's) uncle had been killed in the Battle of Badr.
Wahshi, the slave, says: "On the Day of Uhud I was pursuing Hamzah. He was attacking the centre of the army like a ferocious lion. He killed every one whom he could approach. I hid myself behind the trees and stones, so that he could not see me. He was too busy in fighting. I came out of ambush. Being an Ethiopian, I used to throw my weapon like them (i.e. like the Ethiopians) and it seldom missed the target. I, therefore, threw my javelin towards him from a specific distance after moving it in a particular manner. The weapon fell on his flank and came out from between his two legs. He wanted to attack me but severe pain prevented him from doing so. He remained in the same condition till his soul departed from his body. Then I approached him very carefully and having taken out my weapon from his body returned to the army of Quraysh and waited for my freedom.
After the Battle of Uhud I continued to live in Makkah for quite a long time until the Muslims conquered Makkah. I then ran away to Ta'if, but soon Islam reached that area as well. I heard that however grave the crime of a person might be, the Prophet forgave him. I, therefore, reached the Prophet with Shahadatayn on my lips (i.e. I testify that there is no god but Allah and I also testify that Muhammad is His Prophet). The Prophet saw me and said: "Are you the same Wahshi, an Ethiopian?" I replied in the affirmative. Thereupon he said: "How did you kill Hamzah?" I gave an account of the matter. The Prophet was moved and said: "I should not see your face until you are alive, because the heart-rending calamity fell upon my uncle at your hands".
It was the same great spirit of the Prophet of Islam which made him set this man free although he could execute him on many grounds.
Wahshi says: "So long as the Prophet was alive I kept myself hidden from him. After his death the battle with Musaylimah Kazzab took place. I joined the army of Islam and used the same weapon against Musaylimah and succeeded in killing him with the help of one of the Ansar. If I killed the best of men (i.e. Hamzah) with this weapon, the worst man, too, did not escape its horror"
The participation of Wahshi in the battle against Musaylimah is something which he himself claims, but Ibn Hisham says: "During the last days of his life Wahshi was like a black crow who was always hated by Muslims on account of his being a drunkard and was punished twice on account of drinking wine. On account of his indecent actions his name was struck off the army records and Umar Khattab used to say: "The murderer of Hamzah does not deserve to be pardoned in the other world".
4. Nasibah, the self-sacrificing lady: It is indisputable that jihad is unlawful for women in Islam. It may be mentioned in this connection that a representative of the women of Madina who had the honour of presenting herself before the Prophet spoke to him about this deprivation and complained in these words: "We meet all the needs of life of our husbands and they participate in jihad with a peaceful mind, whereas we women are deprived of this great blessing".
Thereupon the Prophet sent the following message, through her, to all the women of Madina: "If you are deprived of this great blessing on account of some natural and social reasons you can acquire the blessing of jihad by carrying out the responsibilities of married life". In this connection he also uttered the following historical sentence: "Performance of the duties of married life (by a woman) in a proper manner is equal to jihad in the path of Allah".
At times, however, some experienced women came out of Madina with the mujahids (who were mostly their sons, brothers and kinsmen) to help them, and they assisted the Muslims in achieving victory by providing water to the thirsty, washing the clothes of the warriors and dressing the wounds of the wounded.
Umme 'Amir, whose real name was Nasibah, says: "I joined (the Battle of Uhud) to provide water to the warriors and saw that the fragrant air of victory was blowing towards the Muslims. But, soon afterwards, the tables were suddenly turned and the defeated Muslims began to flee. I also saw that the life of the Prophet was in danger, and I considered it my duty to save his life even at the cost of my own. I, therefore, placed the water-skin on the ground and began repelling the attacks of the enemy with a sword which had come into my hand. At times I also shot arrows". Then she mentions the wound which she had sustained on her shoulder and says: "At the time when the people had turned their backs to the enemy and were running away the eyes of the Prophet fell upon a person who was in the condition of flight and he said to him: "Now that you are running away throw your shield on the ground". He did so and I picked it up to utilize it myself. Suddenly I saw a man named Ibn Qumi'ah shouting and saying: 'Where is Muhammad?' He recognized the Prophet and rushed towards him with a drawn sword. Mus'ab and I prevented I him from achieving his purpose. In order to keep me back he struck a blow on my shoulder. Although I also gave him some blows but his blow had a serious effect on me; it continued for one year, while my blow had no effect on him as he was wearing two coats of mail. The blow which I received on my shoulder was very serious The Prophet saw that blood was flowing profusely from my wound. He at once called one of my sons and asked him to bandage my wound. He did so and I again resorted to fighting.
In the meantime I came to know that one of my sons had been wounded. I at once picked up the pieces of cloth which I had brought with me to dress the wounds of the wounded including that of my son. However, as the life of the Prophet was in danger every moment I turned to my son and said to him: "My son! Get up and engage yourself in fighting".
The Prophet was very much surprised to see the bravery and valour of this self-sacrificing woman. When, therefore, he saw the person who had struck her son he at once pointed him out to her and said: "This is the man who struck your son". The cheerless mother who was hovering round the Prophet just as a moth hovers round a candle at once attacked that man like a ferocious lion and struck a blow on his calf which brought him to the ground. This time the surprise of the Prophet about the bravery of the woman increased further and he laughed on account of this in such a manner that his hind-most teeth became visible and then he said to her: "You have avenged the attack made on your son".
On the following day, when the Prophet made his army corps march towards Hamra'ul Asad, Nasibah wished to go with the army, but the severe wound, which she had sustained, did not permit her to do so. On return from Hamra'ul Asad the Prophet sent someone to the house of Nasibah to enquire about her health and was very much pleased to learn that her condition was better.
As a reward for all these sacrifices this lady requested the Prophet to pray to Allah that she might be allowed to remain in his service in Paradise. The Prophet prayed for her and said; "O Lord! Make them my companions in Paradise".
The way in which this lady fought was so much delightful to the Prophet that he said about her: "Today the position of Nasibah daughter of Ka'b is better than that of such and such persons ".
Ibn Abil Hadid says: "The narrator of this tradition has been dishonest with the Prophet, because he has not mentioned clearly the two persons whom the Prophet named on this occasion".
I, however, think that the words 'such and such persons' refer to the same persons who acquired high positions amongst the Muslims after the Prophet's death and the narrator has not mentioned their names openly on account of the respect and the fear demanded by their position.
TRAIL OF THE HAPPENINGS AT UHUD
The Prophet's life was saved from the real danger by means of the self-sacrifice of a minority. Fortunately the majority of the enemies were under the impression that the Prophet had been killed and they were making a search for his dead body amongst the martyrs. And as regards the minority among the enemies who were aware of his being alive their attacks were being repulsed by Ali and Abu Dujanah and (possibly) by some others. In the meantime it was decided that the news of the death of the Prophet might not be denied and the Prophet should move to the valley along with his companions. While on his way to the valley the Prophet fell down in a pit which had been dug by Abu 'Amir for the Muslims. Ali held his hand at once and brought him out of the pit. The first man to recognize the Prophet was Ka'b Malik. He saw the eyes of the Prophet shining from under his helmet and shouted at once: "O Muslims! The Prophet is here! He is alive! Allah has saved him from being harmed by the enemies!"
As the publicity of the news of the Prophet's being alive was likely to invite renewed attacks by the enemies, the Prophet advised Ka'b to keep the matter secret. He, therefore, kept quiet, till the Prophet reached the valley. In the meantime the Muslims who were in the neighbourhood of that place were very happy to find the Prophet alive and felt ashamed in his presence. Abu Ubaydah Jarrah pulled out two rings of the helmet which had penetrated into the face of the Prophet whereas Ali, the Commander of the Faithful, filled his shield with water to enable the Prophet to wash his face. While washing his face (the Prophet) uttered these words: "The wrath of Allah became severer on the people who besmeared the face of their Prophet with blood"
THE OPPORTUNISTS AMONG THE ENEMY
When the Muslims were faced with a great defeat at Uhud the enemy seized the opportunity and started such devices against the Islamic view of Oneness of Allah as had an immediate influence on simple-minded persons. A contemporary writer says: "No opportunity is more favourable for influencing the beliefs and thoughts of the people than the time when they are faced with defeat, adversity, affliction and great distress. At the time of severe hardship the morale of an afflicted people becomes so weak and unstable that their intellect loses the power of decision and assessment and it is at such time that evil propaganda influences the minds of the defeated people".
Abu Sufyan, 'Ikrimah and others, who were holding big idols in their hands and were feeling very jubilant, fully availed of this opportunity and cried: "Exalted be Hubal! Exalted be Hubal!" (Hubal was the name of an idol). By this they wished to tell the Muslims that their victory was on account of their worshipping idols and if there had been any other god and the worship of One Allah had been the true religion, the Muslims should have been victorious.
The Prophet realized that the enemies were propagating something very dangerous in those delicate moments and were taking full advantage of the opportunity which they had got at that time. He, therefore, forgot all his sufferings, and immediately ordered Ali and other Muslims to reply to this proclamation of idolatry in these words: "Allah is Great and Powerful" (i.e. this defeat suffered by us is not due to the fact that we worship Allah but is the result of some persons disobeying the orders of the commander).
Abu Sufyan did not, however, stop propagating his venomous ideas and said: "We have an idol like Uzza whereas you do not have its like". The Prophet seized this opportunity and ordered the Muslims to say in reply: "Allah is our Lord and you don't have a lord like Him". (i.e. if you depend on an idol which is nothing more than a piece of stone or wood we depend on "Allah" who is Great and Powerful).
The proclaimer of polytheism said for the third time: "This day is in retaliation for the Day of Badr". To this the Muslims replied in compliance with the Prophet's orders: "These two days are not equal to each other, because our brothers who have been killed are in Paradise, whereas yours are in Hell".
Abu Sufyan was very much upset by these sharp replies which were coming out of the throats of hundreds of Muslims. Hence, after saying: "We shall meet again next year" he left the battlefield and decided to return to Makkah.
The Muslims, of whom seventy were killed and many wounded, were, however, obliged to perform their Divine duty (noon and afternoon prayers). On account of excessive weakness the Prophet offered the prayers in congregation in a sitting posture, and then performed shrouding and burial of the martyrs.
END OF THE BATTLE
The flames of warfare were put out, and the two parties separated from each other. The casualties of Muslims were three times as many as those of Quraysh. It was necessary for them to perform the requisite religious duties and to bury their dear ones as early as possible.
Before the Muslims were able to bury their dead, the women of Quraysh, who had seen the battlefield free from all sorts of criminal acts, had resorted to very great crimes after victory. Crimes which are unparalleled in the history of mankind. They were not contented with their apparent victory and, in order to take more revenge, cut off the limbs, ears and noses of the Muslims who were lying dead on the ground and thus settled a shameful stain on their character. In all the nations of the world the dead ones of the enemy, who are helpless and undefended, are accorded respect. However, the wife of Abu Sufyan made a necklace and earrings of the limbs of the Muslims. She also pierced the belly of the devoted officer of Islam, Hamzah, and took out his liver. She tried her best to chew and eat it, but failed to do so.
This action of hers was so shameful and abominable that even Abu Sufyan said: "I renounce this act and did not give orders that this should be done. However, I am not much displeased with this thing either".
On account of this indecent act, Hind became known amongst the Muslims as 'Hind, the liver-eater' and later her children also became known as 'children of the liver-eating woman'.
The Muslims arrived in the battlefield along with the Prophet to bury their dead. The Prophet's eyes fell on the corpse of Hamzah and he was moved extraordinarily to see his tragic condition. A storm of anger rose up in his mind and he said: "The anger and wrath which I am feeling in myself now is unprecedented in my life". The historians and exegetes write unanimously that the Muslims pledged their word (and at times they also include the Prophet amongst them) that if they gained control over the idolaters they would treat their killed ones in the same manner and would mutilate the bodies of thirty of them as against one of a Muslim. Soon after their determination to do so the following verse was revealed: If you want retaliation, let it be equal to that which you faced. But if you exercise patience it will be better for you. (Surah al-Nahl, 16:126)
By means of this verse, which is in itself an established principle of Islamic justice, Islam once again displayed its spiritual and sentimental aspect and proved that this Divine faith (Islam) is not a religion of vengeance. It does not ignore the principles of justice and moderation even in the most difficult moments, when one is overpowered by wrath; and implements justice in all events.
Safiyah, the sister of Hamzah, insisted on seeing the dead body of her brother, but, as ordered by the Prophet, her son Zubayr prevented her from approaching it. She said to her son: "I understand that they have mutilated his body. I swear by Allah that if I come near him I shall not display any annoyance and shall bear this calamity in the path of Allah".
This trained lady came near the dead body of her brother with a dignified composure, offered prayers for him, prayed for his salvation and returned.
No doubt the strength of faith is the greatest strength. It controls the most severe excitement and tension and lends dignity and solace to the afflicted person. This in itself is a separate topic which has been discussed by the scholars in connection with prophethood and doctrines of faith.
Thereafter the Prophet offered prayers for the martyrs of Uhud and then buried them singly or in pairs. He ordered in particular that 'Amr bin Jumuh and Abdullah 'Amr might be buried in one grave, as they were friends when alive, and it would be better if they also remained together after death.
LAST WORDS OF SA'D BIN RABI'
Sa'd Rabi' was one of the sincere followers of the Prophet. His heart was imbued with faith and devotion. When he fell down on the ground after having sustained twelve wounds, a man passed by him and said: "They say Muhammad has been killed". Sa'd said to him: "Even if Muhammad has been killed the Lord of Muhammad is alive and we are performing jihad to spread the Divine religion and to defend monotheism".
When the flames of war were extinguished the Prophet thought of Sa'd Rabi' and said: "Who can bring me news about Sa'd?" Zayd bin Thabit undertook to bring authentic news for the Prophet about Sa'd's being alive or killed. He found Sa'd lying amongst those who had been killed and said to him: "The Prophet has deputed me to ascertain your condition and to communicate to him the correct news about you". Sa'd replied: "Convey my salam (regards) to the Prophet and tell him that not more than a few moments of the life of Sa'd are now left and O Prophet of Allah! May Allah give you the best recompense worthy of a Prophet". He also added: "Convey my salam to the Ansar and to the companions of the Prophet and tell them that in case the Prophet meets any harm while they are alive they will not be extenuated by Almighty Allah". The man deputed by the Prophet had not yet left Sa'd when the latter breathed his last.
The love of man for himself is so strong that he never forgets his own self and sacrifices everything belonging to himself for its preservation. However, the power of faith and love for one's object and interest in one's ideal is something stronger, because as clearly stated in history, this brave soldier forgot himself at the most critical moment when he was not far away from death and remembered the Holy Prophet, whose protection was the greatest means of the achievement of his ideal. And the only message which he sent through Zayd bin Thabit was that the companions of the Prophet should not be negligent of his safety and protection even for a moment.
THE HOLY PROPHET RETURNS TO MADINA
The sun is moving towards the west and throws its golden rays on the other side of the hemisphere. Uhud is now perfectly calm and quiet. The Muslims, some of whose companions have been killed and others wounded, are obliged to return to their homes to regain their strength and to dress the wounds of the wounded. The supreme commander gave orders to his men for moving to Madina. The Prophet as well as the Muhajirs and the Ansar later arrived in the city of Madina-the same city from some of the houses the cries of the bereaved mothers, and of the wives, who had lost their husbands, could be heard.
The Prophet reached the houses of Bani Abdul Ashhal. The wailings of their women moved him. Tears began to flow from his eyes and he said in an undertone: "It gives me great pain that none is weeping for Hamzah".
When Sa'd Mu'az and some others became aware of what the Prophet desired they asked some women to observe mourning for Hamzah, the devoted soldier of Islam. When the Prophet became aware of this he prayed for the women and said: "I have always enjoyed the material and spiritual assistance of Ansar". Then he asked the women to return to their homes.
EXCITING RECORD OF A FAITHFUL WOMAN
The life of self-sacrificing women in the early period of Islam is something wonderful and inspiring. When we say that it is wonderful, it is because we rarely find women like them in the modern history.
Nowadays slogans of bravery and heroism come out of the throats of the women of the world, and they claim to possess strength and stability enough to face the shaking events of the time, but they cannot equal the faithful and self-sacrificing women of the early days of Islam. This strength and stability of those women was the direct result of their faith in the Divine Judgement and their hope of recompense in the Hereafter.
A lady belonging to the tribe of Bani Dinar, who had lost her husband, father, and brother, was sitting amongst some women and shedding tears, and the other women were bewailing. Suddenly the Prophet chanced to pass by that group of women. This bereaved lady enquired about the Prophet from the people, who were present near her. All of them replied: "Thanked be Allah, he is quite well". She said, "I am keen to see him from a near distance". The place where the Prophet was standing was not far off. They therefore, pointed her out the Prophet. When the woman saw the face of the Prophet she immediately forgot all her woes and said something from the core of her heart, which created a revolution in the minds of those present there. She said: "O Prophet of Allah! All unpleasant things and adversities are easy in your path". (i.e. if you are alive we consider every calamity, which befalls us to be insignificant, and we ignore it).
Praised be this steadfastness and praised be this faith which keeps a person safe from instability just as an anchor keeps a boat safe from storms while it travels over the seas!
ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF SELF-SACRIFICING WOMEN
In the foregoing pages we have made a brief mention of 'Amr bin Jumuh. Although he was lame and it was not obligatory for him to perform jihad, he insisted upon taking part in it and, having obtained permission from the Prophet, he joined the vanguard of the mujahids (soldiers of Islam). It was not only he who joined the rows of the mujahids, but his son Khallad and his brother-in-law (wife's brother) Abdullah bin 'Amr also participated in this sacred jihad and all of them met martyrdom.
His wife Hind, daughter of 'Amr bin Hazm and paternal aunt of Jabir bin Abdullah Ansari, came to Uhud. She picked up the dead bodies of her martyrs and dear ones from the battlefield, loaded them on a camel and left for Madina.
The rumour had spread in Madina that the Prophet had been killed. The women left for Uhud to gain the correct news about the Prophet. On the way Hind met the wives of the Prophet who enquired from her about the Prophet's welfare. Notwithstanding the fact that she was carrying the corpses of her husband, brother and son on the camel she said to them with great composure, as if no calamity had befallen her: "I have a happy news for you. The Prophet is alive and as compared with this blessing all hardships are insignificant. Secondly Allah turned back the unbelievers while they were filled with anger and wrath.
Then she was asked about the dead bodies which she was carrying on the back of the camel. She replied: "They are related to me. One of them is my husband, the other is my son and the third is my brother. I am carrying them to Madina to bury them there".
Here we find, in the history of Islam, one of the sublimest marks of faith (i.e. considering all calamities to be easy, and bearing all sorrows and hardships for the achievement of one's spiritual aim). The school of materialism cannot train such self-sacrificing men and women. These persons fight for the achievement of a spiritual purpose and not for material gains or for acquiring status.
The latter part of this story is even more wonderful and does not at all agree with the material criteria and with the principles which materialism has laid down for the analysis of historical problems. Only the godly persons and those who have firm belief in Allah and His assistance can analyse the following story and consider it to be totally true.
She (Hind) had the bridle of the camel in her hand and was driving it to Madina. However, the camel was moving with great difficulty. One of the wives of the Prophet said: "The burden on the camel is certainly heavy". Hind replied: "This camel is very strong and can carry the load of two camels and there is certainly some other reason for its doing so, because whenever I turn it to Uhud it walks quite easily, but whenever I turn it to Madina it is either moves on great difficulty or kneels down on the ground.
Hind decided to return to Uhud and to inform the Prophet of the matter. She, therefore, came to Uhud along with the camel and the dead bodies and informed the Prophet about the condition of the camel. The Prophet said: "What did your husband pray for to Allah when he was going to the battlefield?" She replied: "He said: O Lord! Don't make me return to my home". The Prophet said: "The reason for (the camel's) refusal to go to Madina has become clear. Your husband's prayer has been granted. Allah does not desire that this dead body should go to Amr's home. It is necessary that you should bury all the three dead bodies in this land of Uhud and you should know that these three persons will remain together in the other world also". Hind, while tears were trickling from her eyes, requested the Prophet to pray to Allah that she too might be with them.
The Prophet arrived in his house. The eyes of his dear daughter Fatimah Zahrah fell on his wounded face and tears began to flow from her eyes. The Prophet gave his sword to his daughter so that she might wash it.
Ali bin 'Isa Arbali, the traditionalist and historian of the 7th century writes: "The Prophet's daughter brought water to wash off blood from her father's face. The Commander of the Faithful poured water and Zahrah washed blood from the sides, but as the wound on the face was deep, the blood did not stop. At last a piece of mat was burnt and its ashes were applied to the wounds and then the blood stopped flowing from the wounds of his faced.
THE ENEMY SHOULD BE PURSUED
The night, during which the Muslims rested in their houses in Madina after the event of Uhud, was a very delicate night. The hypocrites and the Jews and the followers of Abdullah bin Ubayy were jubilant over this happening. The cries and wailings of the bereaved persons could be heard from most of the houses. Above all there was a danger that the hypocrites and the Jews might revolt against the Muslims, or might at least destroy the political unity and integrity of the centre of Islam by creating differences and dissensions amongst its inhabitants.
The harm which is done by internal differences is much more than that which is caused by the attacks of external enemies. It was, therefore, necessary that the Prophet should admonish the internal enemies and make them understand that the strength of Islam could not be weakened by disorder and chaos and every activity or propaganda which threatened the foundation of Islam would be nipped in the bud with full force.
The Prophet was ordered by Allah to pursue the enemy on the day following that night. He, therefore, appointed a person to make a proclamation in all parts of the city in these words:
"Persons who were in Uhud yesterday should get ready to pursue the enemy tomorrow. However, those who didn't participate in the battle have no right to join us in this jihad".
No doubt this restriction was imposed with some good purposes in view, which cannot remain hidden from intelligent political-minded persons; firstly this restriction was a sort of attack upon those persons who had failed to participate in the Battle of Uhud; it was in fact a negation of the competence of that group, which did not possess worthiness for defence and for participation in a battle; and secondly it was a chastisement for those, who had participated in the Battle of Uhud. As Islam had suffered this blow on account of their indiscipline it was necessary that they themselves should make amends for this defeat so that they might not display such indiscipline in future.
The announcement made by the Prophet's proclaimer reached the ears of a man belonging to the tribe of Bani Abdul Ashhal, when he was sleeping, with his wounded body, along with his brother. This proclamation shook both of them in such a manner that though both of them had no means of transport except one animal for riding and their departure was also difficult for certain reasons, they said to one another: "It is not at all proper that the Prophet should proceed for jihad and we should remain behind". Although these two brothers had to perform the journey by riding alternately they managed to join the soldiers of Islam.
THE PROPHET GOES UPTO HAMRA'UL ASAD
The Prophet appointed Ibn Umme Maktum as his representative in Madina and encamped at Hamra'ul Asad which is at a distance of eight miles from Madina. Ma'bad Khuza'i, the chief of the Khuza'ah tribe, although a polytheist, offered his sympathy to the Prophet. The members of the tribe of Khuza'ah, including Muslims or non-Muslims, had always supported Islam. In order to render service to the Prophet, Ma'bad went from Hamra'ul Asad to Rowhah, the headquarters of the army of Quraysh, and met Abu Sufyan. He found that Abu Sufyan was determined to return to Madina and destroy the remaining strength of the Muslims. Ma'bad dissuaded him from doing so and said: "O Abu Sufyan! Beware of Muhammad, who is in Hamra'ul Asad now. He has come out of Madina with a larger army and those, who didn't participate in the battle yesterday, are also with him today. I have seen faces which are flushed with anger and I have not seen similar faces throughout my life. They are very much regretful for the disorder which took place yesterday". He dilated so much upon the apparent strength and the high morale of the Muslims that he made Abu Sufyan abandon his decision.
The Prophet, along with his companions, remained in Hamra'ul Asad during the first part of the night and ordered that fire might be kindled at various spots in the desert so that the enemy might imagine that the strength of the Muslims was greater than that which they had witnessed in Uhud. Safwan Umayyah addressed Abu Sufyan thus: "The Muslims are angry and vexed. It is better that we should content ourselves with what we have already achieved and should return to Makkah".
A TRUE BELIEVER IS NOT CHEATED TWICE
The above sentence is the resume of the remarks of the Prophet who said: "A true believer is not stung from the same hole again". He said these words when Abu 'Azza Jumahi requested him for freedom. He had been captured in the Battle of Badr and the Prophet had set him free and had taken a promise from him that he would not join the idolaters in their activities against Islam. However, he broke the promise by participating in the Battle of Uhud against Islam. It so happened that, while returning from Hamra'ul Asad, the Muslims again captured him. This time also he requested the Prophet to forgive him and to set him free. The Prophet did not, however, pay any heed to his request and by uttering the above sentence (viz: A true believer is not stung from the same hole twice) gave orders for his execution. With this the tragedy of Uhud, which was perfectly instructive, came to an end.
 Mughazi-i Waqidi, vol. I, pp. 184-190; Tabaqat, vol. ll, pp. 31-34 and Tarikh-i Kamil, vol. II, page 101.
 Commentators and historians like Ali bin Ibrahim, Shaykh Tabrasi (A'lamul Wara') and Ibn Hisham, differ from one another on the question of the number of soldiers. What is said above, however, is plausible.
 Mughazi-i Waqidi, vol. I, pp. 203-204, and some historians believe that the messenger brought the letter to Madina when the Prophet was in the mosque and Abi bin Ka'b read it out for him.
 Biharul Anwar, vol. XX, page III.
 Mughazi-i Waqidi, vol. I, page 211
 Biharul Anwar, vol. II, page 125.
 Mughazi, vol. l, page 214 and Tabaqat-i Kubra, vol. II, page 38.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 65.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 9.
 Biharul Anwar, vol. XX, page 57.
 Usudul Ghabah, vol. II, page 59 and Biharul Anwar, vol. XX, page 57.
 Mughazi-i Waqidi, vol. I, pp. 221-222.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 66.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, Page 68 - 69.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 12.
 An account of nine standard-bearers who were killed by Ali has been recorded in Biharul Anwar, vol. Il. page 51.
 Khisal, vol. II, page 121.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, p. 68 and Tarikh-i Tabari, vol. II, p. 194.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 83.
 Tarikh-i Kamil, vol. II, page 109.
 Ibn Abil Hadid, Sharh-i Nahjul Balaghah, vol. XV, pp. 23 - 24.
 'Ruba'iyat' are the teeth (four in number) which are between the front teeth and the canine teeth.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, p. 84 and Mughazi, vol. I, page 244.
 Tarikh-i Kamil, vol. II, page 107.
 Ibn Abil Hadid, Sharh-i Nahjul Balaghah, vol. XV, page 21.
 Tarikh-i Kamil, vol. II, page 107.
 Ibn Abil Hadid, Sharh-i Nahjul Balaghah, vol. XIV, page 251.
 Khisal, vol. II, page 15.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 14.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 81.
 Volume XX, page 84 onwards.
 Volume I, page 357.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, pp. 69-72.
 The chain of the services of this self-sacrificing woman did not end here. She later participated, along with her son, in the campaign against Musaylimah Kazzab (the impostor) and lost one hand in that battle.
 Abil Hadid, Sharh-i Nahjul Balaghah, vol. XIV, pp. 265 - 267.
 Biharul Anwar, vol. XX, pp. 44-45.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 498; Biharul Anwar, vol. XX, page 131.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. Il. page 95.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 99.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 99.
 As quoted by Ibn Abil Hadid she recited the Qur'anic verse: Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty. Then he says: "Surely she uttered the purport of the first part of the verse, because this verse was revealed at the time of the Battle of the Ditch, which took place after the Battle of Uhud. (Sharh-i Nahjul Balaghah, vol. XIV, page 262).
 Mughazi-i Waqidi, vol. I, page 265.
 Kashful Ghummah, page 54.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 101.
 Tabaqat-i Kubra, vol. II, page 49.
 Seerah-i Ibn Hisham, vol. II, page 104.