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The Women's Courage and Spirit for Islam.

The lap of the mother is admitted to be the best field of instruction. Mothers imbued with the religious spirit are more likely to bring up children who will have similar aptitudes. Alas, our children are brought up in surroundings that draw them away from Islam or at least make them indifferent to the duties they owe therein. The results are obvious.

1. Hadhrat Fatimah's (Radhiyallaho Anha) Tasbih.  

Hadhrat Ali (Radhiyallaho Anho) once said to one of his pupils, "Shall I tell you the story of Hadhrat Fatimah (Radhiyallaho Anha), the dearest and the most beloved daughter of the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam)?"

When the pupil replied in the affirmative, he said:

Hadhrat Fatimah (Radhiyallaho Anha) used to grind the grain herself, which caused corns on her hands. She carried water for the house in a leather bag, which left a mark on her chest. She cleaned the house herself, which made her clothes dirty. Once some war captives were brought to Madinah.

I said to her, "Go to the Prophet (Sallallaho alai he Wasallam) and request him for an assistant to help you in your house-work."

She went to him, but found many people round him. As she was very modest, she could not be bold enough to request the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) in the presence of other people.

Next day the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) came to our house and said, "Fatimah, what made you come to me yesterday?"

She felt shy and kept quiet. I said, "Oh, Prophet of Allah, Fatimah has developed calluses on both her hands and chest, on account of grinding and carrying water. She is constantly busy in cleaning the house and in other domestic jobs, causing her clothes to remain dirty. I informed her about the captives and advised her to go to you and make a request for a servant."

It has also been reported that Hadhrat Fatimah (Radhiyallaho Anha) made a request, "I and Ali own only one bedding and that also is a skin of a goat. We use it in the morning to put the feed of the camel."

The prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) said, "Fatimah, be patient. The Prophet Moses (Alayhis Salam) and his wife owned only one bedding, which was the cloak of Moses. Fear Allah, acquire Taqwa and keep doing your service to Allah and attend to your domestic jobs. When you go to bed, recite Subhanallah (Glorified is Allah) 33 times, Alhumdulillah (The praises are for Allah) 33 times and Allahoakbar (Allah is the Greatest) 34 times. You will find this more helpful than an assistant."

Hadhrat Fatimah (Radhiyallaho Anha) remarked, "I am happy with what Allah and His Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) would be pleased with."

Look! This is the life of the Prophet's dear daughter. In moderately rich families of our times, the ladies think it below their dignity to attend to domestic work. They need assistance in each and every thing, even in their bathroom. What a difference.

In this Hadith, the prescribed Zikr is before sleep. In another Hadith, the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) is reported to have advised Hadhrat Fatimah (Radhiyallaho Anha) to recite after every Salaat, Subhanallah (Glorified is Allah) 33 times, Alhumdulillah (The praises are for Allah) 33 times, Allahoakbar (Allah is the Greatest) 33 times and Lailaha illa Allah wahdahu Lasharikalah lahulmulku walahulhamdu wa huwa ala kulli shayin Qadir, once:

dhikr

"There is no god but Allah, (He is) One without any partners, to Him is Dominion, and to Him is Praises, and He has power over all things."


2. Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha's) Spending In the Path of Allah. 
 

Once Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) received a gift of two bags, containing 100,000 Dirhams. She started distributing these among the poor, till by the evening not a single dirham was left with her. She was fasting that day. Her maid servant brought her a loaf of bread and a little olive oil for Iftar (time for breaking fast), and remarked, "I wish we had kept one dirham for ourselves to get some meat for Iftar."

Aishah said, "Do not be sorry now. If you had told me at that time I would have perhaps spared one dirham."

Gifts of this nature were often received by Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) from Amir Muawawiah, Hadhrat Abdullah bin Zubair (Radhiyallaho Anhoma) and others, for that was the time of ease and plenty for the Muslims as territory after territory fell into their hands. In spite of this abundance, Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) led a life of abstention. Look! She distributes 100,000 dirhams to the poor, but she does not remember to get some meat for her own Iftar. In our own atmosphere today, such stories seem to be impossible, but to the people who have understood the Sahabah's frame of mind, hundreds of such incidents are quite credible.

There are many stories of this nature reported about Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha). Once she was fasting and had nothing for her Iftar except one piece of bread. A poor man came and begged for some food. She asked her maid to give him that piece of bread.

The maid said, "If I give him the piece of bread, there will be nothing left for your Iftar".

She said, "Never mind. Let him have the piece."

Once she killed a snake. She saw a vision in her dream saying, "Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) you killed a Muslim."

She replied, "How could a Muslim come into the house of the Prophet's widow?"

The vision rejoined, "But he had come in Purdah (disguise)."

She abruptly got up from her sleep and at once spent 12,000 dirhams in Sadaqah, which was the blood-money fixed for a Muslim killed by mistake.

Hadhrat Urwah (Radhiyallaho Anho) says, "I once saw Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) spending 70,000 dirhams in charity, while she herself was wearing a dress with patches."


3. Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) Gets Angry With Hadhrat Ibn Zubair (Radhiyallaho Anho).

Hadhrat Abdullah bin Zubair (Radhiyallaho Anho) was Hadhrat Aishah's (Radhiyallaho Anha) nephew. He was very dear to her, as she had brought him up. He did not like the way she spent so much in charity, while she herself lived in want and poverty. He mentioned this to somebody and said, "I must stop my aunt from doing that."

She learnt about this and was so much displeased that she swore not to speak to Hadhrat Abdullah for the rest of her life. Hadhrat Abdullah bin Zubair (Radhiyallaho Anho) was very much shocked by her oath. He deputed many people to speak to her for him, but she told them, "I have taken an oath and I am not prepared to violate it."

He, at last, took two persons from the family of the Prophet's mother to her house to intercede for him. Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) allowed the persons to enter the house and speak to her from behind a curtain. Ibn Zubair (Radhiyallaho Anho) also stealthily got in with these persons.

When these persons started talking, he could not control himself and crossed the curtain and clung to his aunt, crying and entreating her for pardon. The two persons also interceded and reminded her of the Prophet's forbidding a Muslim from forswearing speech with another Muslim.

When she heard this Hadith, she got frightened of Allah's displeasure and began to weep very bitterly. She forgave Hadhrat Zubair (Radhiyallaho Anho) and began to speak with him. She then began liberating slave after slave in expiation of her oath, till 40 slaves had been set free by her. Even later on, whenever she thought of the violation of her oath, she wept so much that her shawl would become wet with her tears.

How much do we worry about the oaths we take from morning till evening? It is for every one to examine his own self and answer. Come and see the people who had real reverence for Allah and His name; how deeply did they feel when they were unable to fulfill an oath. We see Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) weeping so much whenever she remembered that incident about the violation of her oath.


4. Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) and Fear of Allah.

Who does not know about the love that the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) had for his dear wife Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha)? It is said that when he was asked whom he loved most, he replied, "Aishah".

She was well versed in Islamic jurisprudence that many eminent Sahabah would go to her for solving their problems in this field. Gabriel used to greet her with "Assalamo Alaikum." The Prophet once told her that she would be his wife in the Paradise. When she was slandered by the Munafiqin, Allah exonerated her from the slander and confirmed her innocence by revealing verses in the Quran.

According to Hadhrat Ibn Saad (Radhiyallaho Anho) Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho Anha) once enumerated as many as ten special virtues that Allah had given her over the other wives of the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam). Her spending in the path of Allah has already been narrated in the previous stories.

In spite of all these privileges and virtues, she feared Allah so much that she was often heard saying, "I wish I was a tree, so that I could be always busy in Allah's tasbih and be absolved of reckoning on the Day of Judgment".

"I wish I had been a stone or a clod of earth."

"I wish I had been a leaf of tree or a blade of grass".

"I wish I had not been born at all".

The stories about the awe and fear of Allah, which Sahabah had in their hearts, have already been given in Chapter III. This was the guiding factor of their lives.


5. Story of Hadhrat Umme Salmah (Radhiyallaho Anha).

Ummul Momineen (mother of the believers, i.e. wife of the prophet, may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him) Hadhrat Umme Salmah (Radhiyallaho Anha) was first married to Abu Salmah (Radhiyallaho Anho). The husband and wife were very much attached to each other.

Once Umme Salmah said to her husband, "I have heard that if a husband does not marry another woman during the life or after the death of his wife, and also if the wife does not remarry after the death of her husband, the couple when admitted to paradise is allowed to live there as husband and wife. Give me your word that you will not marry after my death, and I too pledge that I will not marry again if you happen to die before me".

Hadhrat Abu Salmah (Radhiyallaho Anho) said, "Will you do as I say?"

She replied, "Of course."

He said, "I want you to take a husband after my death".

He then prayed, saying, "Oh, Allah, let Umme Salmah be married after my death to a husband better than I. May he give her no trouble whatsoever".

In the beginning, the couple emigrated to Abyssinia. after their return, they again emigrated to Madinah. Hadhrat Umme Salmah (Radhiyallaho Anha) says:

When my husband made up his mind to emigrate to Madinah, he loaded the camel with the luggage. He then made me and our son Salmah ride the camel. He led the camel out of the town, holding the string in his hand. The people of my father's clan (Banu Mughirah) happened to see us leaving. They came and snatched the string from Hadhrat Abu Salmah's (Radhiyallaho Anho) hand saying, "You can go wherever you like but we cannot allow our girl to go and perish with you."

They forcibly took me and my son back to their clan. When the people of my husband's clan (Banu Abdul Asad) learnt this, they came to Banu Mughirah and began to argue with them saying, "You can keep your girl if you like, but you have no claim over the child who belongs to our clan. Why should we allow him to stay in your clan, when you have not allowed your girl to go with her husband."

They forcibly took the boy away. Hadhrat Abu Salmah (Radhiyallaho Anho) had already gone to Madinah. All the members of my family were thus separated from each other.

Daily, I would go out in the desert and weep there from morning till night. I lived in this condition for one full year, separated from my husband and my son.

One day, one of my cousins taking pity on me said to the people of the clan, "You have separated this poor woman from her husband and son. Why don't you have mercy on her and let her go?"

Due to the humanitarian efforts of this cousin of mine, the people of Banu Mughirah agreed to let me go and join my husband.

Banu Abdul Asad also made over my son to me. I got a camel ready and, with my son in my lap, I sat on its back and set off for Madinah all alone. I had hardly gone four miles, when Hadhrat Usman bin Talhah (Radhiyallaho Anho) met me at Taneem.

He inquired, "Where are you going?"

I said, "To Madinah!"

He remarked, "With none accompanying you?"

I said, "No, I have nobody except Allah to accompany me."

He took the rope of my camel and began to lead. By Allah, have never come across a person more noble than Hadhrat Osman (Radhiyallaho Anho). When I had to get down, he would make the camel sit and himself go behind a bush and when I had to climb up he would bring the camel and make it sit close to me. He would then hold the rope and lead the animal. Thus we reached Quba (a suburb of Madinah).

He informed me that Hadhrat Abu Salmah (Radhiyallaho Anho) was staying there. He then made us over to my husband and then returned all the way back to Mecca. By Allah no one else could bear the hardships that I bore during that single year.

Look at Hadhrat Umme Salmah's (Radhiyallaho Anha) faith and trust in Allah. She set out on a long and hazardous journey all alone. See how Allah sent His help to her. No doubt Allah can depute anybody to render help to those who place trust in Him, for the hearts of all people are in His control.

As a rule, a lady is not permitted to travel alone on long journey, except in the event of obligatory emigration for the sake of Allah.


6. Ladies in the Khaibar Campaign.

Shoulder to shoulder with their men folk, the ladies in those times, imbued with the same spirit of sacrifice, were striving heart and soul in the path of Allah, and no service in this connection was too much for them.

Hadhrat Umme Ziyad (Radhiyallaho Anha) says:

In the Khaibar campaign, I along with five other women reached the battle-field. The Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam), having learnt this, sent for us. He said with anger, "Who permitted you to come over here? Who brought you to this place?"

We said, "Oh Prophet of Allah! We know knitting and we have some medicine with us. We shall help the Mujahidin by supplying them with arrows, by attending to them when they are sick, and by preparing food for them."

The Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) permitted us to stay.

The women of that time were blessed with the spirit which even the men of our times do not possess. Look at the courage of these women who reached the battlefield on their own accord, and who offered to attend to different jobs in the field.

Hadhrat Umme Salim (Radhiyallaho Anha) joined the Hunain campaign in the state of pregnancy. She kept a dagger on her person.

The Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe Wasallam) inquired, "What is this dagger for, oh Umme Salim?"

She replied, "I shall run it through the belly of any Kafir approaching me".

She had also taken part in the battle of Uhud, wherein she tended the wounds of the fighting men.

Anas (Radhiyallaho Anho) says, "I saw Hadhrat Aishah and Hadhrat Umme Salim (Radhiyallaho Anhoma) running to and fro in the battlefield, carrying water for the wounded."

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