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Battle of Tabuk and the demolition of Masjid Ziraar

Hayat Al-Qulub Vol. 1,
By: Allamah Muhammad Baqir Al-Majlisi

Ali bin Ibrahim has narrated that during summer a caravan from Shaam arriving at Medina, with garments and provisions for sale, gave information that the army of Rum, commanded by the emperor Harqal in person, who had been joined by many of the Arab tribes, like Ghassan, Kharam, Qahar and Hamla, had arrived at Humus, the main body of the army having advanced as far as Balqa, their object being to attack the Muslims.
The Prophet immediately made preparation to march to Tabuk, and summoned all the tribes of Medina and Mecca, like Qaza-a, Marina and Jahinia, with others, to the scared war. He ordered that those who had property should assist the poor in the expedition. Great and general contribution were made to defray the expense of outfit and charges of the war. After leaving the city and encamping at Sinyatul Wida, he made the following address to his army: Praise and thanksgiving be to Allah: O you people, verily the truest word is the book of Allah; the best discourse is that of piety; the best of community is that of Ibrahim, and the best of religious observances are those of the Prophet.
The most excellent utterance is praising Allah, the best of narratives are those of the Quran, the best of works are those which are moderate, and the worst of deeds is heresy. The best of religious directions are those of the prophets, and the best death is martyrdom. The worst of the blind are those of a blind heart, who wander after receiving religious instruction; the best deeds are those which confer advantages in the future world.
The best guidance is that which is followed and the worst blindness is the blindness of the heart. The hand that gives is better than the hand that receives and small charity is better than great wealth, which makes man forgetful of Allah. The best excuse is the excuse asked at the time of death. The worst regret is to ask for pardon at death, and the most degraded of penitents are those that appear as such at the judgment.
There are those who do not except rarely, assemble for worship on Friday, and same only occasionally think of Allah. But the worst sinners are those who are liars. The most perfect independence is that from appetite, and the best of necessaries is fearing the wrath of God. The beginning of wisdom is to fear God, and the best thing that comes to the heart of man is assurance in faith. Doubt in religion is infidelity, and distance from truth is part of ignorance.
Stealing from spoils is portion of Hellfire, drunkenness is a flame of Hell, poetry is of Satan, wine is the gatherer of all sins, and women are the nets of the devil. Youth is a branch of insanity. The worst earnings are the earnings of women and the worst of frauds is defrauding orphans. He is of a fortunate mind who receives admonition from states of others, and unfortunate whom Allah knows to be such before his birth.
Everyone of you will at last go to a narrow cell (grave), toward which all your acts tend. The worst device is that of lying. Whatever is to come soon arrives. Enmity to believers is corruption, fighting them is infidelity, and slandering them is sin against Allah. Their property is as sacred as their blood.
Whoever trusts in God will be sufficiently assisted, and to the patient and persevering Allah will give the victory. Whoever pardons the fault of others, Allah will pardon his; whoever quells his anger, Allah will give him a great reward; whoever is patient under calamity, Allah will bestow on him a good recompense. Whoever wishes to make known his good deeds to men, Allah will degrade and expose him in their estimation.
Whoever keeps fasts will receive a double reward, but Allah will punish all that sin against Him. The Prophet then repeated several times: Lord, pardon me and my community, and turning to his followers, said: I ask forgiveness of Allah for you and for myself. He then incited them to fight manfully for faith.
The people after hearing this address, became eager for battle and all tribes whom the Prophet had invited became ready for Jihad. There was, however, a party of hypocrites who would not go to the war, and among them a man named Jadd bin Qays, to whom the Prophet said, Will you not go with us? perhaps you may take a daughter of Rum prisoner.
The wretch replied, It is well known that there is no man fonder of women than myself; but what I fear is that on seeing the daughter of Rum, I shall not be able to restrain myself within proper bounds: do not therefore expose me to such temptation, but allow me to remain at Medina. Jadd then advised his neighbors not to march in such a hot climate, saying there was nothing to be gained by it but fatigue.
His son reproved, and admonished him that presently some verses would be revealed from heaven denouncing his infidelity, and which men would read and curse him down to the Judgment Day. This apprehension was soon realized, for directly the Almighty Allah sent down his verse:

ۚ ۗ

And among them there is he who says: Allow me and do not try me. Surely into trial have they already tumbled down, and most surely hell encompasses the unbelievers.[441]
Jadd further observed, Muhammad thinks an engagement with armies of Rum is like the battles he has already fought, but none of his army will return. But when these verses were revealed he and his followers were exposed and armies from all around gathered at Sinyatul Wida. The Holy Prophet (S) set out from there and Ali was left in command at Medina, which arrangement was so scandalized by the hypocrites, that at last Amirul Momineen (a.s.) took his arms and overtook the Prophet at Jarf.
The Prophet asked him why he had come. Ali replied that the hypocrites declared that he had been left, lest he should bring misfortune on the expedition. That is false, said the Prophet; and are you not satisfied with being my brother, and holding in respect to me the rank of Harun to Musa, and to be Caliph among my people, as there will never be a Prophet after me? Thus consoled, Ali returned to Medina.
Then Amr bin Auf tribe and Salam bin Umair who were present in Badr came to the Prophet wailing and Bani Waqif Muddai bin Umair and Bani Haritha, Aliya bin Zaid and one who had revealed his hidden wealth to the Prophet and it was because one day the Prophet asked them to donate something to charity and people brought their contributions.
Aliya swore that he had nothing which he can give and he gave all his hidden wealth to the Prophet, who said that Allah has accepted his contribution. So Abdur Rahman bin Kaab, alias Abu Laila from Bani Mazin and from Bani Salma came Aman bin Ghalma and Bani Zariq bin Zajar, Bani Arna bin Saria came to the Prophet wailing and said that they were financially incapable to accompany him. The Almighty Allah revealed the following verse about them:
ٰ ۚ ۚ

It shall be no crime in the weak, nor in the sick, nor in those who do not find what they should spend (to stay behind), so long as they are sincere to Allah and His Apostle; there is no way (to blame) against the doers of good; and Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.[442]
Ali bin Ibrahim has narrated that these people only wanted a pair of slippers, which they can wear and march forward. So the Almighty Allah said:
ۚ

The way (to blame) is only against those who ask permission of you though they are rich; they have chosen to be with those who remained behind[443]
Ali bin Ibrahim has narrated that eighty people remained behind from various tribes. Who were physically fit and had good intentions and there was no doubt about them. But they said that they will meet the Prophet ahead. Abu Khatima was one of them. He had two wives and owned two grape orchards, in which he had constructed thatches. His women performed the function of irrigating the garden. He provided his wives in the best way.
He said that it was not just for the Holy Prophet (S) whose past and future sins are forgiven to be exposed to sun and go for Jihad while people like me should enjoy life. He loaded his she-camel and joined the Prophet. When people saw him approach the Prophet said that it was Abu Khathima. Abu Zar lagged behind for three days as he had a very thin camel who refused to move. Abu Zar left it to walk on foot.
When the sun rose high, Muslims saw a person approach. The Holy Prophet (S) said: It is Abu Zar. Give him water, he is very thirsty. He drank the water although he was already having a pot of water with him. The Holy Prophet (S) asked why he was thirsty when he had water, he said: O Messenger of Allah (S), I found some rain water collected in a depression in a rock, but when I tasted it, I found that it was extremely sweet and cool.
So I vowed that I will not taste it till I have given it to my beloved, Messenger of Allah (S). The Holy Prophet (S) said: O Abu Zar, may the Almighty Allah have mercy on you. You will live alone, die alone, will be raised alone on Judgment Day and enter Paradise alone. Some people from Iraq will perform your last rites.[444]
The Prophet now ordered his army to be numbered, and it was found to be twenty-five thousand strong, besides slaves and servants. He then commanded the believers to be counted, and there were twenty-five persons who had not opposed him in that expedition.
Some believers and some hypocrites had not accompanied in the expedition. Believers were those who had wisdom in religion and sign of hypocrisy had not been seen in them. They were: Kaab bin Malik, Marara bin Rabi and Hilal bin Umayyah. Kaab says
: I was never as healthy and powerful as I was at the time of the Battle of Tabuk and I never was given two quadrupeds to ride. I thought that if I departed in a day or two I would be able to join the Prophet; but I continued to lie in laziness for many days.
Meanwhile I went to the market but I could not achieve anything. I saw Hilal bin Umayyah and Marara bin Rabi that they had also remained behind. We conferred among ourselves that the following day we will go to the market, complete our business and then leave for the battle. But the following day also, we could not achieve anything. This went on till we learnt that the Prophet was returning from Tabuk and we were much ashamed. When the Holy Prophet (S) reached near Medina we went out to congratulate him on his safe return. When we saluted, the Prophet did not respond. He turned away from us.
We saluted the believers, but they also did not respond. Our family members learnt about this and they also stopped talking to us. When we came to the Masjid, no one saluted us or spoke to us. Finally our wives went to the Holy Prophet (S) and said: We know that you are infuriated with our husbands. If you want, we will separate from them.
The Holy Prophet (S) said, No, but do not go near them. when Kaab bin Malik and his companions saw this, they said: Why should we remain in Medina, when neither the Prophet speaks to us nor our friends or family members? Let us go to a mountain and stay there till the Almighty Allah accepts our repentance. Or we will die there only. Thus they climbed the Zubab mountains. They fasted during days and their family members brought them food which they placed in a corner without speaking to them. Thus they continued to cry and seek forgiveness for a long time.
After many days passed in this condition, Kaab said: All are angry with us and no one is willing to talk to us; so let us separate from each other also? So they took a vow that they will not speak to each other till death or that their repentance is accepted. Three days passed when they did not even look at each other. On the third day when the Messenger of Allah (S) was at Umm Salmas place the Almighty Allah accepted their repentance and revealed the following verse:

Certainly Allah has turned (mercifully) to the Prophet and those who fled (their homes) and the helpers who followed him in the hour of straitness[445]
Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.) said: The verse is revealed like this and not like how the people recite:

Certainly Allah has turned (mercifully) to the Prophet and those who fled (their homes)[446]
One whose repentance was accepted was Abu Zar, Abu Khathima, Amr bin Wahab, who lagged behind and then finally joined the Prophet. But the Almighty Allah revealed the following verse about Kaab and his two companions:

And to the three who were left behind[447]
Imam (a.s.) said that the verse revealed like this:

And to the three who were left behind[448]
That is the Almighty Allah accepted the repentance of the three who disobeyed the Prophet and did not go out to fight.
ٰ

until the earth became strait to them notwithstanding its spaciousness[449]
Imam (a.s.) said: It implies that the Prophet, their brothers in faith and their family members had boycotted them so it became difficult for them to live in Medina and hence they retired to the hills.

and their souls were also straitened to them[450]
Imam (a.s.) said: It implies that they stopped interaction between themselves and separated from each other. At last the Almighty Allah accepted their repentance as He was aware of their true intentions.
Ali bin Ibrahim has narrated that a group of hypocrites set out for the Battle of Tabuk with the Prophet and on the way conferred among themselves that Muhammad thinks that the Battle of Rum is like the other battles that he has fought. None of them will return alive. Some of them sarcastically said: How learned is that God, Who informs Muhammad about that which we talk among ourselves and that which passes through our minds and He reveals verses about them so that people may continue to read them forever.
The Holy Prophet (S) told Ammar Yasir to join their group, because he was so bold in words that he would irritate them. Ammar came to them and said: What nonsense have you spoken that the Almighty Allah has informed your Prophet? They said: We have not said any untoward thing and it was all by way of jest. At that juncture, the Almighty Allah revealed the following verses:
ۚ . ۚ

The hypocrites fear lest a chapter should be sent down to them telling them plainly of what is in their hearts. Say: Go on mocking, surely Allah will bring forth what you fear. And if you should question them, they would certainly say: We were only idly discoursing and sporting. Say: Was it at Allah and His communications and His Apostle that you mocked?[451]
ۚ

Do not make excuses; you have denied indeed after you had believed; if We pardon a party of you, We will chastise (another) party because they are guilty.[452]
Ali bin Ibrahim, in the commentary of this verse, has narrated from Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) that these were the ones who brought faith with sincerity, but they had doubt in religion and became hypocrites; and they were four persons, one, Mujtabir bin Himyar was such that the Almighty Allah promised to forgive him. He confessed to his mistake and repented for it saying that his name was responsible for his calamity. So the Holy Prophet (S) named him as Abdullah bin Abdur Rahman.
He prayed: O Allah, give me martyrdom at such a place that no one should come to know about my whereabouts. The Almighty Allah accepted his prayer and he was martyred in the Battle of Musaylima and no one knew where he was. Thus he was forgiven by the Almighty Allah. But Ayyashi has through reliable chains narrated from Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) that these verses were revealed about Abu Bakr and Umar and ten persons of Bani Umayyah, because these twelve had planned to assassinate the Prophet at the Uqbah of Tabuk.
They had planned that if they were detected, they would claim that they were joking, and if the remained undetected, they would eliminate the Holy Prophet (S). At that time the Almighty Allah had revealed these verses and forgiveness of some of them implies that Amirul Momineen (a.s.) under an exigency forgave Abu Bakr and Umar in the world by the order of Allah and cursed them from the pulpit and also cursed those ten persons.
When the Holy Prophet (S) returned from the Battle of Tabuk, believing companions objected to the hypocrites and condemned them. So they swore that they were steadfast on faith they had not become hypocrites so that believers may refrain from harassing them. So the Almighty Allah revealed the following verses about their falsehood:
ۖ ۖ ۖ ﴿٩٥﴾ ۖ ٰ

They will excuse themselves to you when you go back to them. Say: Urge no excuse, by no means will we believe you; indeed Allah has informed us of matters relating to you; and now Allah and His Apostle will see your doings, then you shall be brought back to the Knower of the unseen and the seen, then He will inform you of what you did. They will swear to you by Allah when you return to them so that you may turn aside from them; so do turn aside from them; surely they are unclean and their abode is hell; a recompense for what they earned.[453]
It is mentioned in Tafsir Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) that those hypocrites who took part in Battle of Tabuk on the night of Uqbah, the wicked infidels plotted to assassinate the Prophet on the Uqbah pass and those of the hypocrites who had remained behind in Medina decided to eliminate Ali Ibn Abi Talib (a.s.).
But they could not surpass Allah (Who was the protector of both of them). It was due to the fact that the Holy Prophet (S) had appointed Ali (a.s.) to a lofty position. At the time of departing for the Battle of Tabuk, the Messenger of Allah (S) appointed Ali in Medina as his representative and said: Jibraeel had come and said: After greetings, the Almighty Allah says: O Muhammad, either you go out and Ali (a.s.) remain in Medina or Ali (a.s.) may go and you remain in Medina. There is no other choice, so I have chosen Ali for one of the options. None except me knows the great rewards and majesty of one who will obey me in both these matters.
At last when the Holy Prophet (S) set out for the battle of Tabuk after appointing Ali (a.s.) as his deputy in Medina, the hypocrites began to say many things about it. They said: Muhammad has had a tiff with Ali and he is displeased with his company. That is why he did not take him along on this expedition. Ali (a.s.) became very sad on hearing this, so he set out after His Eminence (S) and met him on the outskirts of Medina. On seeing him, His Eminence (S) asked: Why did you leave your place?
Ali (a.s.) said: O Allahs Messenger (S), I heard such remarks from the people and I could not bear them. His Eminence (S) said: O Ali, are you not pleased that you are to me as Harun was to Musa (a.s.), except that there will be no prophethood after me? Thus Ali (a.s.) returned to Medina and the hypocrites devised a plot to eliminate him.
So they dug out a pit, fifty yard long, on the way, covered it with palm leaves and spread some mud upon it to conceal it. It was dug at a spot that he had to cross in any way, and it was dug quite deep, so that the Imam may fall into it along with his horse; and then stones may be thrown over him to bury him alive. When Ali (a.s.) reached near the pit, the horse turned its neck and by the power of God it became so long that its mouth reached to the ear of His Eminence (a.s.), and then it said: O Amirul Momineen (a.s.), the hypocrites have dug a pit over here and have planned to kill you. You know better that you must not pass from here.
His Eminence (a.s.) said: May Allah give you a good reward, as you are my well-wisher and concerned for my well being. Almighty Allah will not deprive you of His great kindness. Then His Eminence (a.s.) drove the horse till they came to the edge of that pit. The horse stopped, fearing that it would fall into it. His Eminence (a.s.) said: Go on by the order of Allah, you will pass over it safe and sound; and Allah will give an outstanding rank and make this matter of yours unique. At last the horse began to gallop over it and the Almighty Allah made the earth hard and smooth and filling up the pit, made it like other grounds.
When Ali (a.s.) passed over it, the horse turned its neck and putting the mouth on his ear said: Indeed your status is very venerable near the Lord of the worlds, that He enabled you to pass over this empty pit. His Eminence (a.s.) said: The Almighty Allah has rewarded you for your concern about me and made you pass over it safe and sound. Then the head of the horse turned to the back and the people who had planned it were also present there.
Some were at the back and some ahead. His Eminence (a.s.) told them to uncover the pit. When it was opened, it was found empty from inside, such that if anyone had stepped over it, he would have fallen into it. Seeing this miracle, the hypocrites were shocked and amazed. His Eminence (a.s.) asked: Do you know who has done this? They replied: We dont know. His Eminence (a.s.) said: But my horse knows. Then he turned to his horse and asked: What is the truth and who has done it?
The horse said: O Amirul Momineen (a.s.), when Allah wants, He makes something firm and ignorant people want to spoil it or when ignorant people want to make something firm and Allah wants to destroy it, then only Allah gains the upper hand and people are subdued. O Amirul Momineen (a.s.), this is the handiwork of so-and-so ten hypocrites and twenty-four other men whose advice was taken but who have gone along with Allahs Messenger (S); and they have planned to kill His Eminence (S) at Uqbah, and Allah is the protector of His Messenger (S) and His Wali (a.s.).
Some companions of Amirul Momineen (a.s.) said: Let us inform the Prophet about it and send a message through a fast messenger. Amirul Momineen (a.s.) said: Allahs messenger and His letter will reach sooner than my messenger and letter. Dont worry, they can never succeed in this.
Thus when the Prophet reached near the cliff where the hypocrites had planned to kill him, he halted there and gathering the hypocrites said: The Trustworthy Spirit has brought news from the Lord of the worlds that hypocrites planned to kill Amirul Momineen (a.s.) on the outskirts of Medina and Allah, by His Grace, made the ground hard below the hooves of his horse and feet of his followers and they passed over it safely.
Then they turned back and opened the pit. Allah emptied it just as the hypocrites had prepared it before, thus disclosing their wickedness. Some believers advised him to send a message to the Prophet but he replied that Allahs messenger and His letter will reach sooner than his messenger and message. But the Prophet did not tell them about the prophecy that Ali (a.s.) had mentioned to his companions at the gates of Medina.
That some hypocrites who were in the company of the Prophet intend to eliminate him and that the Almighty Allah will ward off their wickedness from him. When these twenty-four hypocrites heard this discourse of the Prophet that he delivered about Ali (a.s.), they began to talk among themselves: Muhammad is an expert in deception; some fast messenger or a carrier pigeon must have brought news that Ali has been killed in this way as it is the same thing that our associates had taken advice on, now he is hiding the facts from us, relating it in another way so that his companions may rest content and may not turn upon him.
It is a remote possibility and it cannot be to the contrary. By Allah, Alis death has retained him in Medina and his death has brought him here. Ali has definitely been killed there and he will surely be killed here. Anyway, lets go and show joy at Alis escape so that he may be content with regard to us and we may carry out our plan easily. So they came to His Eminence (S) and congratulated him of Alis escape from the enemies.
Then said: O Allahs Messenger, tell us, who is excellent? Ali or the proximate angels? His Eminence (S) said: Angels are honored only because they love Muhammad and Ali (a.s.) and they have accepted their guardianship. And there is no devotee of Ali (a.s.) who is not purified of all spiritual dirt and made purer than the proximate angels. Angels were ordered to prostrate to Adam (a.s.) because they had the notion that if Allah takes them up and create others in their stead in the earth, they (the angels) would be superior to them and more cognizant of divine religion.
Thus Allah intended to make them aware that their thinking was wrong, so He has created Adam (a.s.) and taught him all the names and presented these named ones before the angels, but they failed to recognize them. After that He commanded Adam (a.s.) to mention the names and identify those personalities, so that the angels may know that Adam was superior to them in knowledge.
Then He separated a progeny from Adams loins, that included all prophets, Muhammad (S) and his progeny, which is superior to all; his virtuous followers and companions were all included. In this way, Allah made them aware that they are superior to angels. They are entrusted such duties that if angels are with them they would find it dreadful. They will have to contend with Shaitan and struggle with evils, fulfill family responsibilities and try to earn lawful sustenance.
They will suffer hardships and trouble from kings, cruel persons and thieves. They will bear difficulties of straits, mountains, hills, seas and jungles. Allah made them realize that virtuous people have to fight Shaitans and defeat them; keep their selves from desires and lustfulness. Besides this, Allah has collected in them lust and need of clothes, food, desires, prestige, kindness, pride etc. as a result of which they have to suffer a lot.
The shaitaans will try to create fear and temptations in their mind and mislead them, but they will overcome their evil suggestions. They will have to tolerate taunts, abuses, the desire for food and to escape from the enemies and bear difficulties in travel. Almighty Allah told His angels: O My angels, you are free from all this. You are not having lust and desires and have no fear of enemies of the world and Shaitan is unable to mislead you as he cannot interfere in this kingdom. I have kept you safe from his hands.
O My angels! One who obeys My orders from the children of Adam and tries to save the religion from troubles and difficulties, is deserving of My rewards that angels are nor eligible for. He has obtained some things from Me, that you have not. In short, Allah told His angels about the excellence of the followers of Muhammad (S) and Ali (a.s.), his successors and their believers and proved that the children of Adam (a.s.) were superior to them.
Then Allah ordered them to prostrate to Adam (a.s.) for the reason that the future generations were in him. This prostration was not for Adam (a.s.); he was their Qiblah and they prostrated to Allah. This prostration was for Adams respect and not because he was deserving for it; and none is deserving of prostration except Allah.
If I order anyone to prostrate to other than Me I will order him to prostrate to that person who is the medium of the knowledge of the Wasi of the Messenger of Allah (S) and is sincerely devoted to the best of men after Muhammad, that is Ali Ibn Abi Talib (a.s.). And who in order to explain the rights of Allah is prepared to undergo untold great hardships and from His rights that Allah had revealed to him he does not deny anyone of them, whether he knew about them beforehand or came to know later.
After that the Messenger of Allah (S) said: Iblis disobeyed Allah and was ruined because he became arrogant about Adam (a.s.). And Adam (a.s.) disobeyed Allah when he ate the fruit of the tree forbidden by Allah, but was saved, because he did not add to his disobedience with pride against Muhammad and Aale Muhammad; so Allah revealed to Adam (a.s.): Shaitan disobeyed Me with regard to you and was proud against you and that is why he was ruined.
If he had prostrated to you under My command and respected My order and majesty, he would have indeed become successful. And you disobeyed Me in eating the fruit of that tree and gained deliverance by according respect for Muhammad and Aale Muhammad (a.s.); and the shame that you earned through your mistake will go away.
So you must pray to Me through the sake of Muhammad and Aale Muhammad that I will fulfill your need. Thus Adam (a.s.) made Muhammad and Aale Muhammad his intercessors and prayed through their sake and obtained a great status of victory and deliverance, because he held on firmly to the love of us, Ahlul Bayt.
After that the Prophet (S) ordered his companions to march at midnight and announced to all Muslims not to ascend the hill until he (S) passes it. Then His Eminence (S) ordered Huzaifa to sit below the hill and watch who is passing first over it before him and inform him. Huzaifa (r.a.) was instructed to hide behind a rock but he said: If I see the faces of the leaders of your army sitting at the foothill and if they plan to kill they would come before you and if somebody finds me and thinks that I will inform you, they would kill me.
His Eminence (S) said: When you reach foothills, there is a big rock towards the jungle, you go to it and say that the Prophet (S) orders you to crack open for me, so that I can enter. Then say that the Prophet (S) orders you to keep a hole, so that you can watch who passes by and also that it may enable you to breathe and not die of suffocation. When you tell the rock, by the order of Allah the rock will act accordingly.
Thus Huzaifa (r.a.) gave the message of His Eminence (S) to the rock, it happened as predicted and he sat watching through the hole. At that time, the twenty-four persons arrived on camels; footmen walked before them saying to each other: If you see anyone here, kill him at once, so that he cannot inform Muhammad and hearing this, they might return from here and not climb till morning, and our plot may fail. Huzaifa (r.a.) heard them and they searched everywhere but could not see anyone as the Almighty Allah had concealed him in the rock.
After that, some of them climbed the hill, some left the usual path and some stood to the left and right of the foothills; other were saying: See how the plan to kill Muhammad is succeeding. He himself forbid the people to climb the hill before him so that we get privacy and can carry out our plan. Thus we shall be free before his companions arrive. Huzaifa (r.a.) could hear them from near and far and he memorized everything.
When they had settled in their places in the mountain, that rock spoke up by the command of Allah and asked Huzaifa (r.a.) to go to the Prophet and tell him what he had heard. Huzaifa (r.a.) said: How can I go out? Because if they see me, they would kill me, so that I may not reveal their plan. The rock said: Allah provided a place in me for you and through the hole He made in me, conveyed air to you.
The same Allah will take you to His Eminence (S) and save you from the enemies. At last when Huzaifa (r.a.) intended to go, the rock split and Allah turned him into a bird and he started flying in the air and went to His Eminence (S). When he landed, Allah again changed him to his original form. Huzaifa (r.a.) told everything he had seen and heard. His Eminence (S) asked: Did you recognize them by their faces?
He said: They had veiled their faces but I recognized them by their camels. But later when they had inspected the place and could not find anyone there, they lifted the veils and I saw their faces and recognized them that they were such and such twenty-four persons. His Eminence (S) said: O Huzaifa! When Allah wants to save Muhammad (S) no one in the world can harm him. Because Allah will effect His affair through Muhammad (S) even if disbelievers do not like.
Then he said: O Huzaifa! You, Salman and Ammar come along with me and trust in Allah. And when we pass the difficult terrain, the people may be permitted to follow us. Then His Eminence (S) mounted his beast and climbed the hill. From Huzaifa and Salman (r.a.), one held the camels nose string and the other drove it from behind, whereas Ammar (r.a.) walked by the side. The accursed hypocrites were on their camels and their footmen stood on various mounds of the hill.
Those who were above the pass, had with them pots filled with stones, so that when His Eminence (S) comes up, they will roll down the pots so that the camel along with His Eminence (S) may fall into the valley, which is so deep that one feels uneasy seeing it. At last when the pots filled with stones came rolling to the camel, they rose very high by the order of Allah and when the camel passed by, all the pots fell into the valley and the camel did not feel anything.
Then His Eminence (S) asked Ammar (r.a.) to climb the hill and beat their camels with his staff and make them fall down. Ammar (r.a.) did this. The camels started running helter skelter. Some of them fell down, some lost their hands and some their legs and ribs. On account of this, they suffered a lot and even after the wounds were healed, the marks remained on their bodies till death.
Thats why His Eminence (S) said that Huzaifa (r.a.) and Ali (a.s.) know all these hypocrites very well because Huzaifa (r.a.) saw all of them from the foothill, whoever climbed the hill before the Holy Prophet (S) and Allah protected His Apostle and Messenger (S) from the enemies and he returned to Medina safe and sound. Allah disgraced those who had not accompanied the Prophet to the battle, and those who had planned to kill Ali (a.s.), Allah kept their wickedness away from His Wali (a.s.) and made them disgraced.
Kulaini has narrated from Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.) that when people tried to provoke the she-camel of the Prophet, she began to speak by the power of Allah: By Allah I will not move from my place even I am cut up into pieces.
Ibn Babawayh has narrated through authentic chains of narrators from Huzaifa bin Yaman that when the Prophet was returning from the Battle of Tabuk, those who tried to provoke the Prophets she-camel were fourteen persons: Abu Bakr, Umar, Muawiyah, Abu Sufyan father of Muawiyah, Talha, Saad bin Abi Waqqas, Abu Ubaidah bin Jarrah, Abul Awar, Mughira bin Shoba, Salim, the freed slave of Abi Huzaifa, Khalid bin Walid, Amr Aas, Abu Musa Ashari and Abdur Rahman bin Auf, may Allah keep His mercy from them. These were the ones regarding whom the Almighty Allah said:

and they had determined upon what they have not been able to effect[454]
It is narrated in reliable traditions that the Holy Prophet (S) cursed Abu Sufyan on seven occasions, one of which was when they attacked the Prophet at Uqbah. They were twelve persons, seven from Bani Umayyah and five others. The Messenger of Allah (S) cursed them at that time.
Shaykh Tabarsi has narrated through Shia and Sunni channels that when the Holy Prophet (S) returned from the Battle of Tabuk, twelve hypocrites were hiding on the top of the cliff to eliminate him. Jibraeel came down and warned him of the impending danger and suggested to him to send someone to beat their camels. On that night Ammar was leading the Prophets she-camel and Huzaifa was driving it from behind.
The Holy Prophet (S) told Huzaifa to hit on the snouts of the camels of those who stand on the cliff. Huzaifa drove them and returned to the Prophet, who asked him if he had recognized them and he replied in the negative. The Holy Prophet (S) said: They were such and such they had come to assassinate me. Huzaifa said: Why dont you send someone to eliminate them? The Holy Prophet (S) replied: I dont want the Arabs to accuse me of eliminating ones who helped me gain victory once.
Qutub Rawandi has through trustworthy chains narrated from Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.) that one night the Messenger of Allah (S) was traveling on his she-camel during the journey to the Battle of Tabuk and people were walking ahead of him. When he reached near Uqbah, Jibraeel came down and said: Fourteen persons from your companions, six of whom are from Quraish, or he mentioned their names and said, they wait on the cliff to provoke your she-camel and eliminate you.
The Messenger of Allah (S) called them by names that you are waiting on the cliff to kill me, at that time, Huzaifa was behind the Prophets she-camel and he was listening to the Prophets discourse. The Holy Prophet (S) called him and asked if he had heard whatever he said to which he replied, Yes. The Prophet told him to keep it confidential.
It is narrated from the same Imam through another channel that whatever the hypocrites used to talk, was revealed in Quran and they used to be exposed. So much so that they stopped talking out and they restricted their interaction through gestures of the eyes. Some of them said: We are not content that a few verses should be revealed about us and we should be exposed forever. Let us wait for Muhammad on that cliff and finish him off and get rid of him.
That cliff was called Uqbah Zeefataq. So they scaled the cliff and waited there. Huzaifa was driving the camel and he says: When the Prophet wanted to sleep, I used to leave the camel so that it may amble slowly. That night I thought that it was a dark night and I should not leave the beast alone. So I was present with the Prophet.
Jibraeel arrived and warned that some persons sat on the cliff to provoke the she-camel. The Holy Prophet (S) called them by their names: O so and so, O enemies of Allah. Then he noticed me and he asked: Did you see them? Yes, O Messenger of Allah (S). Did you recognize them? Yes, they have veiled their faces, by I recognized them from their beasts. The Holy Prophet (S) said: Dont reveal this to anyone. Huzaifa said: They are from Quraish.
Shaykh Mufeed and Shaykh Tabarsi have narrated that the Prophet set out for the Tabuk expedition in the month of Rajab in 8th Hijri because the Almighty Allah had revealed that they should proceed to the Battle of Rum and had informed him that they will not have to take part in actual fighting and that they will achieve their aims without fighting.
The aim of this battle was in fact to distinguish between the believers and hypocrites from the sincere companions, and that their hypocrisy should be exposed. So the Messenger of Allah (S) called them for the Battle of Rum at the time of harvest season in Medina and it was extremely hot. So the people found it very painful to set out at that time. It was an extremely long journey, the climate was hot, the enemy was stronger and they feared loss of their crops. So many companions made excuses and many came out reluctantly.
Then the Holy Prophet (S) wrote to the Arab tribes who had embraced Islam and motivated them for Jihad. When they were setting out from Medina he delivered an eloquent sermon and after divine praise motivated people to finance the journey of poor and spend in the way of Allah. Many hypocrites donated for show-off and some sincere believers also donated whatever was possible.
Uthman bin Affan gave some Awqiya silver and Abdur Rahman bin Auf, Talha and Zubair also contributed. Abbas donated a substantial amount. Then they camped at Saniyatul Wida and whoever had accepted the invitation of the Prophet gathered there from Muhajireen and Ansar and Arab tribes like Bani Kanana, Mazniya, Jahniya, Wati, Tamim and Meccans.
The Holy Prophet (S) appointed Imam Ali (a.s.) in charge of Medina so that he may oversee the affairs of Medina and family of the Prophet etc. and stop any mischief that may appear. And he said: O Ali, it is necessary that one of us should remain in Medina, because the Holy Prophet (S) was aware of the true intentions of Arabs and most Meccans as he fought all of them and had slain their relatives and he feared that if he goes far away from Medina they may join with the hypocrites of Medina and may attack his family members and create mischief.
The Almighty Allah also knew that except for the sword of Amirul Momineen (a.s.) nothing could douse the flames of their enmity, so He revealed that Ali (a.s.) should be left in Medina. And since the hypocrites of Medina were against the Caliphate of Ali and they knew that in his presence they will not be able to create any mischief. And they also feared that if something happened to the Prophet, the Caliphate of Amirul Momineen (a.s.) will be permanent.
So they spread rumors about his being left in Medina that the Holy Prophet (S) had not left him in Medina because of his excellence, actually he is fed up with his company and he hates his companionship. Amirul Momineen (a.s.) thus came to the Prophet to expose those allegations. The Messenger of Allah (S) said: My brother, go back to Medina, because your presence is necessary there and you are my caliph in my family and my town.
Are you not satisfied that you are to me as Harun was to Musa (a.s.), except that there will be no prophet after me? Since the Holy Prophet (S) issued a correct text about the caliphate of Imam Ali (a.s.) it exposed the allegations of those hypocrites.
After that the Messenger of Allah (S) gave the standard of Muhajireen to Zubair and Talha was appointed on the right wing and Abdur Rahman to the left. They halted at Jarf where Abdullah bin Ubayy took some of his companions and went away without the permission of the Prophet. So the Prophet said: Allah is sufficient for me and He is the One who supported me by His help and with the believers and united their hearts. Then they set out from there and reached Tabuk on a Tuesday of Shaban and stayed there for the remaining days of that month and some days of the month of Ramadan and conducted expeditions from there. Bakhta bin Ruwaiya agreed to pay tribute and the Prophet wrote a document of amnesty for him.
Similarly the people of Arba and Azra accepted suzerainty and were issued amnesty. During the Tabuk expedition, the Holy Prophet (S) sent Abu Ubaidah bin Jarrah to a group of Bani Khazan under the leadership of Nasnan bin Ruh Jazami, who brought some booty and prisoners. Saad bin Ubadah was sent to Bani Salim group and some groups of Bali tribes, who fled on seeing the Muslims. Khalid bin Walid was sent with some persons to Akidar, the king of Domatul Jundal and the Holy Prophet (S) miraculously said that the Almighty Allah would perhaps give him victory because of mountain goats.
He said: When you reach near the wall of his palace, Allah will send a herd of deer and mountain goats to the gate, who would rub their horns on the door. When Akidar hears the animals, he will ask his men to go out and hunt them down. His wife will restrain him saying: Dont tell them to go out at this time of the night because Muhammad has landed near our fort. I am afraid he will send his men here and they would capture you.
He replied: Who can dare to split from the army? Our people will detect them from a distance in this moonlight. The whole sky is illuminated and no one is here and if anyone were near the palace, these wild animals would have run away. At last the king will came out to hunt the animals that fled from there. He followed them and was surrounded by Khalid and his men.
Thus what the Prophet (S) had said came to be true and they arrested him. Akidar said: I have a request. They said: You may ask whatever you want, but dont ask us to release you. Akidar said: Remove my royal garments and sword etc. and take me to His Eminence (S) in a simple shirt so that he does not see me in rich garments.
Perhaps he would have pity on me in that case. They did that and when the Muslims and Arabs saw the rich embroidered clothes in moonlight, they remarked: O Messenger (S), these garments and ornaments look like garments of heaven. His Eminence (S) said: No. These are the garments of Akidar and this is his sword. If my cousin, Khalid and Samak are firm on my command, they will surely meet me at the Kauthar pool.
Their one handkerchief is better than all this. The companions asked: Their handkerchief would be better than this? His Eminence (S) said: Even if the space between the earth and sky is filled with gold, one thread of the handkerchief they will hold in Paradise, would be better than that.
When they brought Akidar to His Eminence (S), he said: Spare me so that I can prevent your enemies, who live beyond my country, to attack you. His Eminence (S) said: What if you dont fulfill your promise? He said: Yes, Allahs Messenger, if I cannot; then if you are really are the Prophet of Allah, and Allah Who protected you and Who sent the herd of deer to my door and took me out of my palace and made me arrested by your companions; the same Allah will have me arrested again.
At last the Holy Prophet (S) signed a treaty with him that he would pay a thousand Awqiya gold and two hundred robes in the month of Rajab and same in the month of Safar and whenever a Muslim passed through his territory, he would be provided rations for three days till he goes out of his boundaries. And if he breaks this promise, he would be out of the guarantee of Allah and the Messenger. After that His Eminence (S) returned to Medina It is mentioned in some reliable books that on arriving at Tabuk, it appeared that the report of the emperor of Rums advancing against the Prophet was false. When Harqal learnt of the Prophets arrival, he sent a man of Anan tribe to ascertain if the signs mentioned about the prophet of the last age are present in him.
When he came to the Prophet and witnessed his praiseworthy qualities, he reported them back to Harqal who gathered his people and said: The qualities we read in former books are all present in him. So let us go and accept faith at his hands. The people opposed him vehemently and he feared his throne and believed in his heart without revealing to his people and did not agree to fight him. The Prophet also did not receive divine permission and he went to Medina.
Many miracles were displayed by the Prophet during this journey. First it is narrated in Tafsir Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) from Ali Ibnul Husain that: Like Mecca, in Medina also there were hypocrites and weak-hearted Muslims and they also desired the destruction of Masjids there and throughout the world.
Those cursed ones had desires and intended to kill Ali (a.s.) in Medina and the Holy Prophet (S) on his way while crossing the vale of Aqaba, the Almighty Allah, in order to multiply the intelligence and eyesight of the faithful and to wipe out the plots of the rebellious hypocrites, issued such wonderful miracles through the hands of the Holy Prophet (S), during the expedition of Tabuk, which showed Allahs power and mercy towards His faithful servants.
One of those miracles is that when the companions of the Prophet, during the Tabuk journey, had, like Bani Israel, begged to the Holy Prophet (S): O Allahs Messenger! We are not satisfied with only one kind of food. So, in this matter, the miracle shown by the Holy Prophet (S) was in no way lesser than one shown by Prophet Musa (a.s.) to his community. By the command of Allah, while leaving Medina for Tabuk, the Holy Prophet (S) made Ali (a.s.) his deputy in Medina.
Amirul Momineen (a.s.) said: O Allahs Messenger! In no circumstances do I wish to disagree with you. But I also never desire to make myself deprived of seeing your holy and radiant face. The Holy Prophet (S) replied: O Ali! Do you not like that your rank, in my sight, should be like that of Harun (a.s.) in the sight of Musa (a.s.)? The only difference is that there will not be any prophet after me. So, O Ali! You will have to remain here.
You will get the same divine reward, which you would have gained in my company and also like of those who faithfully travel with me. Since you wish that you see every move and condition of mine, the Almighty Allah will call upon Jibraeel to raise up all the earth on which we move and all places where you remain and also to make your eyesight so powerful that you will be able to observe me and my companions during this journey. Thus you will also not need to write me any letter of inquiry.
When the statement of the Holy Imam (a.s.) reached this point, a hypocrite stood up and said: O son of Allahs Messenger! How is such a thing possible for Ali (a.s.)? It is reserved only for prophets. Imam Zainul Abideen (a.s.) replied: That also was a miracle of the Holy Prophet, of no one else, because, just as the Almighty Allah, in reply to the Prophets prayer, raised up the ground, so also, responding to his request, made the eyesight of Ali (a.s.) powerful enough to observe all distant events.
Thereafter, Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) said: The people of this community are very unjust to Ali (a.s.). They describe the gracefulness of others but deny the same honor to Ali Ibn Abi Talib (a.s.), though he is higher than all others in this matter. How do they deny to Ali (a.s.) what they grant to others? The companions requested Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) to explain this matter.
The Holy Imam (a.s.) said: Those people befriend the friends of Abu Bakr bin Abi Qahafa and hate his enemies, whoever they may be. Similar is their attitude towards Umar bin Khattab and Uthman bin Affan. But in the matter of Ali (a.s.), they say: We do not love his friends and do not hate his opponents. Who knows how they adopted this attitude when the Holy Prophet (S) has already publicly pronounced: O Allah! Love those who love Ali and be the enemy of those who are inimical towards Ali (a.s.). Help the helpers of Ali and deny help to those who deny help to Ali (a.s.). Therefore, not being against the opponents of Ali (a.s.) is not a just attitude.
Another injustice adopted by such people is that whenever graces and excellences are granted to Ali (a.s.) in response to the Prophets prayer, are described to them, they deny the same[455] and when the same kind of praise is made for others, they accept it.
After all, what has prevented them from agreeing to the same excellence, which they have accepted for others?! For example, they describe that once Umar bin Khattab was giving a sermon. Suddenly he cried out loudly: O Saariya! Towards the hill! At the conclusion of his speech, when people asked about the said words of interruption, he replied: While giving sermon to you, I looked towards the grounds where your Muslim brothers are waging Jihad under the banner of Saad bin Abi Waqqas against the deniers.
The Almighty Allah removed all curtains from my eyes and I could see that some infidels had arrived there with the intention of surrounding the Muslims from behind to massacre them. Therefore, I cried out: O Saariya! Towards the hill! So that they may take cover in the mountains and be saved. The Almighty Allah has granted the villages and habitations of the disbelievers to your brothers-in-faith and so through their fight they may capture them victoriously. So remember this. Very soon, you will know about this event, though the distance between Medina and Nahavand is that of over 50 days journey.
Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) said: When this can happen for Umar, why it cannot be for Ali (a.s.)? But these people do not understand anything. They are talking too unjustly.
Thereafter, he reverted to the speech of Imam Zainul Abideen (a.s.) and said that Imam Sajjad (a.s.) said: When the Holy Prophet (S) proceeded to Tabuk, the Almighty Allah raised the ground on which Ali (a.s.) stayed and moved, so that he could watch the conditions of the Holy Prophet (S) and his armys movements.
Imam Sajjad (a.s.) also said: Whenever the Holy Prophet (S) set out to fight, he never mentioned the destination. But in case of Tabuk he spoke out openly and ordered all to prepare for the journey taking necessary materials with them. So they took with them flour, salted meat, honey and dates in large quantities. They did so because the Holy Prophet (S) had already informed them of the long distance and impending hardships and non-availability of food.
Finally, when many days passed in traveling and the eatables with them became stale, they did not like to eat the same things over and over again and desired for fresh food. So they said to the Holy Prophet (S): O Allahs Messenger! We are fed up with this stale food which is about to be putrefied and to give out foul smell. Kindly make some arrangement.
The Holy Prophet (S) asked them: What are you having now? They replied: Loaves of bread, dry salted meat, honey and dates. The Holy Prophet (S) exclaimed: You have been like Bani Israel! They had said: We cannot pull on with one kind of food. Now tell me what you want? They replied: We want fresh and dried meat, chicken and sweetmeat. The Holy Prophet (S) said: Of course, you are differing from Bani Israel in one thing.
They had demanded cucumber, onion, garlic, masoor and vegetables. They desired to exchange good things for lower things but you desire higher in exchange of lower, However, I will soon request the Almighty Allah to fulfill your desires. At that time some of them said: We also have some who desire the lower grade things like Bani Israel. They also desire to eat onion, cucumber and vegetables etc. like Bani Israel. The Holy Prophet (S) said: All right, the Almighty Allah will soon grant you all that you want, you must testify my messengership and trust me and then said: O servants of Allah! The people of Prophet Isa (a.s.) asked him for a table of eatables from heaven. So when Isa (a.s.) prayed for it, the Almighty Allah said:

Allah said: Surely I will send it down to you, but whoever shall disbelieve afterwards from among you, surely I will chastise him with a chastisement with which I will not chastise, anyone among the nations.[456]
Simply: Allah said: I will surely send down for you a table of eatables from the sky. But if after that, anyone from you becomes a disbeliever I will punish in a way none has been punished before.
Thereafter, the Almighty Allah sent down to them Maidah (Food Table) from heaven. But thereafter some of them became deniers. Consequently Allah changed their faces for worse. He turned some of them into pigs, some into monkeys, some into cats, some into bears and some into land and sea animals as well as birds.
They were transformed into 400 different kinds of creatures. That is why, I do not request Allah to fulfill your demand of a heavenly table of food (Maidah), because if some of you become infidels thereafter, they will also be punished by Allah like those in the past. I am very kind towards you and hence I dont like to see you in punishment. Thereafter, the Holy Prophet (S) observed a bird flying in the sky. He asked one of his companions: Go and tell that bird, that the Messenger of Allah (S) orders you to drop to the earth.
The command was conveyed and the bird fell down. Then the Prophet asked his companions: Surround this bird from all sides. They did so. The bird had, as ordered become so big that more than ten thousand persons could surround it. Then the Holy Prophet (S) said: O bird! By the command of Allah, dissect your wings and feathers. It complied with the order instantly. Only flesh and skin was visible with bones inside.
Then the Holy Prophet (S) ordered the bird to separate its beak and bones and legs. It did so. All these parts of the bird were scattered on ground and people were seated all around it. Then the Holy Prophet (S) ordered the bones to turn into cucumber. They did so. Then he said: The Almighty commands these wings and the big and small feathers to turn into onions, garlic and different kinds of vegetables. The order was complied with at once.
Then the Prophet asked his companions: Extend your hands and eat the provision using your hands as well as your knives. They did so. Then a hypocrite said: Muhammad imagines that in Paradise also there are birds, which will enable the people of Paradise to taste roasted meat on one side and cobwebs from their other side, but he has not yet shown this phenomenon in this world. The Almighty Allah made the Prophet (S) know what that hypocrite meant.
So the Holy Prophet (S) told his companions: O servants of Allah! Everyone of you should pick up his morsel reciting Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem wa Sallallaahu alaa muhammadinw wa aalihit tayyibeen.[457] When you put that morsel into your mouth you will taste meat, gravy or sweet as desired by you. The companions did so and got what they had desired. All got gratified. Then they said: O Allahs Messenger! We are satisfied with eatables.
Now we need some good drink. The Holy Prophet (S) asked: Do you want milk and other drinks? They replied: Yes, some of us do want it. The Holy Prophet (S) said: Take a piece from this birds meat and put it in your mouth reciting Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem wa Sallallaahu alaa muhammadinw wa aalihit tayyibeen. That morsel will turn into anything, giving you the desired taste of drinks. They did so and became fully satisfied.
Then the Holy Prophet (S) told that bird: O bird, the Almighty Allah orders you to revert to your original form and shape and all the organs and parts of your body which had become eatables should regain their earlier figure, form and size. So it happened. Then the Holy Prophet (S) said: O bird, the Almighty Allah commands your departed spirit to come back to you.
So that also happened. Then the Holy Prophet (S) said: O bird, now the Almighty Allah orders you to rise from ground and begin to fly in the sky as you were doing earlier. The bird, before the eyes of the companions, rose from the ground and flew away into the sky. When they looked on the ground they found none of the eatables.
Second Miracle: Qutub Rawandi has narrated that when the Messenger of Allah (S) camped at Tabuk and there was exchange of messengers between him and the King of Rum, and the period prolonged and there was shortage of rations; people complained to the Prophet and he told them to bring all the flour or dates that they may be having.
They brought a handful of flour and some dates. The Prophet spread a sheet and put the things on it. Then he called all of them to collect food from there. They brought their vessels and filled them up with flour and dates but there was no decrease in the original. When the Holy Prophet (S) came across a water hole that had gone dry, he took out an arrow and gave it to companions and asked him fix it at the bottom. When he did so, twelve springs of water gushed out from there and all drank from it and filled their water skins.
Third Miracle: Qutub Rawandi has narrated that the Messenger of Allah (S) set out to Tabuk and his she-camel Ghazba was lost and a hypocrite Ammara bin Kharam sarcastically remarked that Muhammad informs us of the earth and the heavens and is ignorant where his she-camel is.
The Messenger of Allah (S) was informed through divine revelation and he said: I only know that which the Almighty Allah has taught me. At the moment the Almighty Allah has told me that the she-camel is in such and such pass and its rein has got caught up in a tree. People went there to find it in the same condition.
Fourth Miracle: Qutub Rawandi has narrated that during the Battle of Tabuk, there were 25000 companions with the Prophet in addition to slaves and servants. On the way, they reached a mountain from which water was dripping slowly but running water was not available. Companions said: This is strange.
The Holy Prophet (S) said: This mountain is weeping. The companions were astonished. The Messenger of Allah (S) said: Why are you weeping? O Messenger of Allah (S), one day Prophet Isa (a.s.) passed from here reciting the Injeel in which it is stated that there is a stone which will be used to burn fuel, so I am weeping from that day lest I also become such a stone.
The Messenger of Allah (S) said: Rest assured as you are not that stone. It is the stone of arrogance. So the mountain was assured and no one saw it weeping again. Fifth Miracle: It is mentioned in some reliable books that when the Messenger of Allah (S) reached Wadiul Qura, he camped below a rock and informed that there will be strong wind that night and no one should venture out alone.
Also they must tie their camels securely. So a terrible storm appeared and no one came out alone except two persons from Bani Saida. One of them wanted to relieve himself and another went out in search of his camel. The first one was blown away by the wind and the next one was blown away to the mountain ranges of Bani Tai. The Holy Prophet (S) prayed for the first and he became alive and returned and the next one was sent back by Bani Tai when the Prophet returned to Medina.
Sixth Miracle: It is narrated that when the Prophet set out from below that rock and reached the next stage of journey none of the companions had any water and neither was it available there. People complained of thirst and the Prophet faced the Qiblah and prayed, soon clouds appeared and it rained so heavily that they drank to satiation and also filled up their water skins. Then the clouds disappeared.
Shaykh Tabarsi has narrated from Abu Hamza Thumali that three men of Ansar named: Abu Lubabah bin Abdul Manzar, Thalaba bin Rabia and Aws bin Khazam disobeyed the Prophet and remained in Medina and they came to know that Quranic verses were revealed about those who turned away from battle and they became sure of their death.
So they tied themselves to the pillars of the mosque and remained like that till the Holy Prophet (S) returned from the battle and inquired about them. He was told that they would not untie themselves till they are not released by the Prophet himself. He said: I also swear that I will not release them till the Almighty Allah does not send a communication regarding them. At last the following verse was revealed about them:

may be Allah will turn to them (mercifully)[458]
The Holy Prophet (S) came to them and untied their hands and accepted their repentance by the order of Allah. They returned home and brought their wealth to the Prophet and offered them saying: These were responsible for our misfortune. You may accept them as charity. The Holy Prophet (S) said: I have not received any communication of the Almighty Allah regarding this. At that juncture, the following verse was revealed:
ۖ

Take alms out of their property, you would cleanse them and purify them thereby, and pray for them; surely your prayer is a relief to them([459])([460])
It is mentioned in Tafsir Imam Hasan Askari (a.s.) that at last when Saad Ibn Maaz was satisfied after the extermination of the Bani Quraiza tribe and after sometime he passed away, the Holy Prophet (S) remarked: O Saad, may Allah have mercy on you, you were like a bone stuck in the throat of infidels, you would have prevented the appointing of the calf which they want to establish in Medina, like it was done at the time of Musa (a.s.).
Then he said: Yes, by Allah, they want to do this. If Saeed were alive, he would not have allowed their plan to succeed. They will devise some plans, but Allah will nullify them. The companions asked how it would happen. His Eminence (S) said: Let it be, till Allah manifests His plan.
Imam Musa Kazim (a.s.) said: When Saad Ibn Maaz passed away and His Eminence (S) marched to Tabuk, the hypocrites from the Ummah of Muhammad made Abu Aamir Rahib their leader and gave him oath of allegiance; and decided to loot Medina and apprehend the family of Prophet, other families and children of companions; and made a plan to attack the Prophet and kill him on the way of Tabuk.
But Allah kept him safe in a beautiful way and disgraced these hypocrites. That is why the Holy Prophet (S) had said: You will follow the path of the previous nations just like a shoe follows another and one feather of the arrow is like another; and you will resemble them totally. So much so, that if they had entered a snake hole, you will also enter it.
The audience asked: O son of Allahs Messenger, please tell us, who that calf is and what their plan was. Imam Kazim (a.s.) said: Listen, the Prophet (S) was getting messages from the king of Domatal Jindal, a big province near Syria, who used to threaten that he would attack Medina and slay the companions. The companions were afraid of this and twenty of them guarded the Prophet every day in turns and any time and whenever anyone screamed, they thought the kings army has arrived and the hypocrites also spreads false rumors making the companions fall in doubt and said that King Akidar has indeed prepared his army and horses and announced in all areas: I make it lawful for you to plunder Medina.
The hypocrites then created doubts in the minds of weak Muslims and said: How can the companions of the Prophet confront Akidars men; he is about to attack Medina to kill the men and take women and children as captives. At last the believers were much hurt by these statements of hypocrites and complained to the Holy Prophet (S). After that the hypocrites came together and paid allegiance to Abu Aamir Rahib, whom the Prophet had labeled as a transgressor; they made him their leader making incumbent his obedience on themselves.
He said: I think I should go out somewhere from Medina, so that I remain free from blame till your plot is complete. Thus he sent a letter to Akidar in Domatal Jindal saying: Lay siege to Medina and we will help you to eliminate your enemies. When the hypocrite finalized their plot, Allah informed the Prophet (S) and ordered him to march to Tabuk.
Before this, when the Prophet led an expedition, the destination used to be kept confidential and other places were mentioned to mislead the mischief-makers. But this time he openly announced his intention and ordered the people to collect necessary equipments. This was the battle in which hypocrites were disgraced and Allah censured those who abstained from joining it.
The Almighty Allah informed the Prophet through revelation and he announced: Allah, the mighty would make me victorious on Akidar; he would be captured and make peace with us on the condition to pay a thousand tolas gold and two hundred garments in the month of Safar and same in the month of Rajab and I shall return to Medina safely within eighty days.
Then he said to his companions: Musa (a.s.) promised his community forty nights and I promise that I will return to Medina safely without fighting after eighty nights and dont have doubt on this. The hypocrites said: This will never happen thus, it would be his last defeat. After this, he will not recoup, because his companions will die of heat and polluted air and water of jungles; and those who escape, will be wounded and killed by Akidar or captured by him.
The hypocrites sought permission from the Prophet to exempt them, and put forth different kinds of excuses. Some said they were sick, some made the excuse of excessive heat and some mentioned their childrens illness and the Prophet continued to excuse them. When the departure to Tabuk was finalized, the hypocrites built a mosque outside Medina, which became known as Masjid Zirar.
Their intention was to gather there and tell the people they were gathering for prayer so that they succeed in their plan. After that some people came to the Prophet and said: Allahs Messenger, we live far away from your mosque and we also dont like praying solitary. That is why we have built a mosque there, please come and pray there once so that the mosque is blessed.
The Prophet (S) knew through revelation something but he didnt say it; and ordered them to bring a donkey. He mounted it and he and companions tried to drive it, but it did not move from its place; however when it was turned to another direction, it was willing to move. The hypocrites said: This donkey is afraid of something and it doesnt want to go this way.
The Prophet (S) dismounted and asked for a horse and mounted it. Again when he tried to ride to the mosque, the horse did not move; and when it was turned to another direction, it started moving. The hypocrites said: This horse is also afraid of something and doesnt want to go this way. Then His Eminence (S) said: Let us go on foot.
But when the Prophet and others decided to walk to Masjid Ziraar, their feet became stiff and could not move at all; and when they turned to go the other way, they found it easy to walk; their bodies become light and their hearts, happy. Seeing this, the Prophet (S) said: Allah does not like that we go there at a time when we are ready for a journey.
Wait for a few days till we return. After that we will do what Allah wants. Thus His Eminence (S) made efforts to set out for Tabuk at the soonest and the hypocrites decided to eliminate the remaining people in Medina after the Prophet leaves for Tabuk. Hence Jibraeel (a.s.) came from Allah and said: O Muhammad (S) after Durood and salutation, Allah says: Either you go on the journey, leaving Ali (a.s.) in Medina or send him on the journey and you remain here.
The Prophet (S) conveyed this divine command to Ali (a.s.) who said: I happily accept the order Allah and His Messenger, even though I dont want to leave the company of His Eminence (S) under any circumstance. His Eminence (S) said: Do you not accept that your status with regard to me is just as Harun was to Musa (a.s.) except that there will be no prophet after me? Ali (a.s.) said: O Allahs Messenger, I accept.
His Eminence (S) said: O Abul Hasan, by staying in Medina you will get reward of traveling in this journey. Allah has made you a Nation like Ibrahim (a.s.) [That is just as Ibrahim (a.s.) was commanded to confront alone the polytheists of that time, in the same way you will have to confront these infidels and hypocrites alone] and due to your awe, the hypocrites will not be able to cause any harm to the Muslims.
Thus when the Holy Prophet (S) set out to Tabuk and Ali (a.s.) went along to see him off, the hypocrites said that Muhammad (S) did not take Ali (a.s.) along with him because of his displeasure with him. His intention is that we attack Ali (a.s.) and kill him. When this news reached the Prophet, Ali (a.s.) said: Allahs Messenger, have you heard what these hypocrites say?
The Prophet (S) said: O Ali, is it not enough for you that you are to me like vision is to my eyes and the soul to the body? After that His Eminence (S) set out with his companions, leaving Ali (a.s.) as his representative in Medina. Whenever the hypocrites thought of attacking the Muslims, they used to be afraid of Ali, the victor of Khyber and dreaded that others may also rise up in Alis support and thwart their plans. But all the time they said that this would be the last journey of Muhammad and that he will not return.
At last, when there was only a short distance between Holy Prophet (S) and Akidar, one evening His Eminence (S) said to Zubair bin Awwam and Samak bin Khurasha to go with twenty Muslims to the palace of Akidar and capture him. Zubair said: Allahs Messenger, how can we bring him here? He has a huge army as you know, besides thousands of slaves and maidservants etc. His Eminence (S) said: Capture him by some trick.
They said: How can we do that? First of all, it is a full moon night and secondly the path is through an open plain, how can we hide ourselves from their sight? His Eminence (S) said: Do you want Allah to hide you from their sight and make your shadow vanish, so that there is no difference between the moonlight and your light? They said: Yes, Allahs Messenger, we want that.
His Eminence (S) said: Then it is obligatory on you to recite Durood on Muhammad and Aale Muhammad and have faith that Ali Ibn Abi Talib (a.s.) is most superior among all my progeny; and O Zubair, specially you stick to the faith that Ali (a.s.) is most deserving of leadership in whichever community he is present, and no one else is allowed leadership. When you do this, and reach near the wall of his palace, Allah will send a herd of deer and mountain goats to the gate, who would rub their horns on the door.
When Akidar hears the animals, he will ask his men to go out and hunt them down. His wife will restrain him saying: Dont tell them to go out at this time of the night because Muhammad has landed near our fort. I am afraid he will send his men here and they would capture you. He replied: Who can dare to split from the army?
Our people will detect them from a distance in this moonlight. The whole sky is illuminated and no one is here and if anyone were near the palace, these wild animals would have run away. At last the king will came out to hunt the animals but they fled from there. He followed them and was surrounded by Zubair and his men.
Thus what the Prophet (S) had said came to be true and they arrested him. Akidar said: I have a request. They said: You may ask whatever you want but dont ask us to release you. Akidar said: Remove my royal garments and sword etc. and take me to His Eminence (S) in a simple shirt so that he does not see me in rich garments. Perhaps he would have pity on me in that case.
They did that and when the Muslims and Arabs saw the rich embroidered clothes in moonlight, they remarked: O Messenger (S), these garments and ornaments look like garments of heaven. His Eminence (S) said: No. These are the garments of Akidar and this is his sword. If my cousin, Zubair and Samak are firm on my command they will surely meet me at the Kauthar pool.
Their one handkerchief is better than all this. The companions asked: Their handkerchief would be better than this? His Eminence (S) said: Even if the space between the earth and sky is filled with gold, one thread of the handkerchief they will hold in Paradise, would be better than that.
When they brought Akidar to His Eminence (S), he said: Spare me so that so that I can prevent your enemies, who live beyond my country, to attack you. His Eminence (S) said: What if you dont fulfill your promise? He said: Yes, Allahs Messenger, if I cannot; then if you really are the Prophet of Allah, and it was Allah Who protected you and Who sent the herd of deer to my door and took me out of my palace and made me arrested by your companions; the same Allah will have me arrested again.
At last the Holy Prophet (S) signed a treaty with him that he would pay a thousand Awqiya gold and two hundred robes in the month of Rajab and same in the month of Safar and whenever a Muslim passed through his territory, he would be provided rations for three days till he goes out of his boundaries. And if he breaks this promise, he would be out of the guarantee of Allah and the Messenger. After that His Eminence (S) returned to Medina.
Imam Musa Kazim (a.s.) said: The calf of the time of the Holy Prophet (S) was Abu Aamir Rahib; whom His Eminence (S) had labeled as a transgressor. When His Eminence (S) became victorious and returned to Medina and Allah nullified the deceit of the hypocrites, the Prophet (S) ordered to burn the mosque of Zirar and Allah sent the following verse:
ۚ ٰ ۖ

And those who built a Masjid to cause harm and for unbelief and to cause disunion among the believers and an ambush to him who made war against Allah and His Apostle before; and they will certainly swear: We did not desire aught but good; and Allah bears witness that they are most surely liars.[461]
Then Imam Musa Kazim (a.s.) said: Allah destroyed the calf that was present during the time of the Prophet (S). He became involved in leprosy and paralysis and this condition remained for forty days and after that he died and fell into a severe chastisement of Hell.
Ali bin Ibrahim and Shaykh Tabarsi etc. have narrated that when the Bani Amr Auf constructed a Masjid at Quba and asked the Prophet to pray there and he prayed there, some twelve or fifteen persons of Bani Ghanam bin Auf were jealous of this and they also said that we will also make a Masjid and not attend the prayers led by Muhammad. According to the report of Ali bin Ibrahim they came to the Prophet and said: O Messenger of Allah (S), do you permit us to make a Masjid for old, sick and night-worshippers at Bani Salim?
The Prophet gave them the permission. When the Masjid was ready, they came to him and said: O Messenger of Allah (S) we would like you to pray at our Masjid to bless us. At that time the Prophet was leaving for Tabuk and he said: I am already mounted. I will come on my return, Insha Allah. So when he returned, they repeated the same request. At that juncture, the Almighty Allah revealed the verses about the Masjid and Abu Aamir Rahib stood exposed for heresy.
The incident of Abu Aamir is that during the period of Jahiliyya, he had adopted asceticism and donned a jute garment. When the Holy Prophet (S) migrated to Medina that accursed one used to instigate the infidels against the Prophet and harass him in various ways. When after the conquest of Mecca, Islam became strong, he fled to Taif.
When people of Taif embraced Islam, he fled to Shaam and converted to Christianity. He was the father of Hanzala who was martyred in the Battle of Uhad and was bathed by angels. Afterwards that accursed one sent a message to the hypocrites of Medina that they should be prepared and that they should construct a Masjid in which they should gather. I am going to the Caesar of Rum to bring an army to attack Medina to drive Muhammad out. So the hypocrites of Medina were waiting for him as the Almighty Allah has alluded to it. And before that accursed one died before he can reach the King of Rum. Then the Almighty Allah restrained the Prophet from praying there and He said:
ۚ ٰ ۚ ۚ ﴿١٠٨﴾ ٰ ٰ ٰ ۗ ﴿١٠٩﴾ ۗ ﴿١١٠﴾

Never stand in it; certainly a Masjid founded on piety from the very first day is more deserving that you should stand in it; in it are men who love that they should be purified; and Allah loves those who purify themselves. Is he, therefore, better who lays his foundation on fear of Allah and (His) good pleasure, or he who lays his foundation on the edge of a cracking hollowed bank, so it broke down with him into the fire of hell; and Allah does not guide the unjust people. The building which they have built will ever continue to be a source of disquiet in their hearts, except that their hearts get cut into pieces; and Allah is Knowing, Wise.[462]
Kulaini, Ibn Babawayh, Shaykh Tusi and Ayyashi have narrated through authentic chains of narrators from Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) and Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s.) that the Masjid about which the Almighty Allah says that its foundation was placed on piety, is Masjid Quba in Medina. Therefore the Almighty Allah has praised those who used water to purify themselves after urinating and Ali bin Ibrahim has narrated from Imam Muhammad Baqir (a.s.) that the building about which the Almighty Allah said that it is on the verge of Hell is Masjid Zirar, which was constructed by the hypocrites in deceit.
When these verses were revealed, the Holy Prophet (S) sent Malik bin Waqsham Khuzai and Aamir bin Adi from the Amr bin Auf tribe to burn and demolish the Masjid. When they came near, Malik said: Wait, I will bring fire from my home, and they put it on fire which destroyed the roof and pillars and it collapsed and the hypocrites ran away. After that they demolished the walls and returned from there. According to another report, Ammar bin Yasir and Wahshi were sent and the two of them destroyed it.
Notes:
[441] Surah Taubah 9:49
[442] Surah Taubah 9:91
[443] Surah Taubah 9:93
[444] The author says: That last part of this report will be quoted in full in the biography of Abu Zar.
[445] Surah Taubah 9:117
[446] Surah Taubah 9:117
[447] Surah Taubah 9:118
[448] Surah Taubah 9:118
[449] Surah Taubah 9:118
[450] Surah Taubah 9:118
[451] Surah Taubah 9:64-65
[452] Surah Taubah 9:66
[453] Surah Taubah 9:95-96
[454] Surah Taubah 9:74
[455] Against excellence of Ali they either deny or put forth weak arguments and raise doubts about the narrators with a view to prove that the narrations are not reliable. But when such excellence is uttered for others they gladly accept the same even though they are based on narrations of unreliable people and even if it is against reason. Their attitude has hardened to such an extent that they condemn Alis followers in extremely mean terms and propagate the praise of the opponents of Ali-lovers and Ali-admirers and those who give respect to Ahlul Bayt (a.s.). These people regard such writers as high as has been recorded in history. Translator
[456] Surah Maidah 5:115
[457] In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful and may Allah bless Muhammad and his Purified Progeny.
[458] Surah Taubah 9:102
[459] Surah Taubah 9:103
[460] The author says: The story of Abu Lubabahs incident mentioned after the account of the Battle of Bani Quraiza is more reliable.
[461] Surah Taubah 9:107
[462] Surah Taubah 9:108-110

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