Sunday, December 27, 2009

Reflecting on Muharram and Ashura


9 Muharram 1431 Hijri
KL Ba'Alawi hosted yet another blissful majlis tonight. This time the jemaah was blessed to be in the presence of Habib Zain bin Yahya of Yemen.

Ahmad ya Habibi Habibi salam alaik
Ya aunal qoribi Ahmad ya Habibi

After a melodious rendering of qasidah by a Syrian brother, Shaykh Fahmi Zamzam al-Maliki said a few words of welcome to Habib Zain and started the majlis with tausiyah on the virtues of celebrating Ashura by fasting on the day itself and the day of Tashu'a. "Muslims fast one day before or after 10th of Muharram (day of Tashu'a) in order to khaliful Yahud, meaning to differentiate ourselves from the Jews. An oft-quoted hadith on this occasion mentions Allah's promise to expiate the sins of the preceding year of one who fast. When Prophet Muhammad s.a.w migrated to Madinah, he found the Jews fasting on Ashura day. He asked them why, to which they said, "Allah saved our great prophet, Nabi Musa from Firaun on this day."
"Ana al haqq bi Musa," the Prophet replied.
Indeed, in all respects, Rasulullah was more deserving to honor Musa.

Apart from this incident, Muharram is certainly a special month as it marked Prophet Muhammad's migration to Madinah. "Much has been said about this historical event but I wish to speak on one chosen individual who accompanied Rasulullah during the hijrah."

Shaykh Fahmi highlighted seven reasons why Sayyidina Abu Bakar was special. "Sayyidina Abu Bakar r.a. was the first minal rijal (male adult) to embrace Islam. The ummat collectively agreed that he was the best man after the anbiya (the prophets). He was always concerned about the Prophet who at one point made a declaration that no one was more dutiful to him than Sayyidina Abu Bakar was. When Prophet first mentioned the possibility of migrating, he was foremost in understanding what was to happen. In preparing for the anticipated event, he had bought two camels and fed them with the best animal feed available. He must have thought about the importance of having a strong reliable transport for the long, arduous and dangerous journey to Madinah. That's how thoughtful Sayyidina Abu Bakar was. His sohba (friendship) with Rasulullah s.a.w was significant enough to warrant a mention in the Qur'an. "Iz yaqulu li sohibihi la tahzan innallah..." His high spirit of companionship ensured the Prophet's safety. He would sometimes walk behind Rasulullah and sometimes in front, fearing for his safety. The enemies had offered 100 camels as reward for the Prophet's life. When they arrived at the cave where they were to hide, Sayyidina Abu Bakar asked the Prophet to wait outside while he sweeped away scorpions and what not."

"His iman (faith) and amal (good deeds) excelled every person's iman and amal collectively. Upon arrival in Madinah, the Prophet's camel stopped on a tract of land belonging to Sahl and Suhail. When the Prophet expressed his intention to purchase the property costing 200 dinar, Sayyidina Abu Bakar came up with the required amount instantly. This moved the Prophet to tears! So know that the spot where Masjid Nabawi is now, including the Raudhah area was a wakaf (donations) from Sayyidina Abu Bakar as-Siddiq."

"During the Tabuk Battle, Nabi had again asked for some funding. Sayyidina Umar thought that could be his opportunity to surpass Abu Bakar's generosity because he had greater earnings than him then. So Umar gave half of his wealth which equalled the amount of Abu Bakar's entire wealth. But this time the Prophet did not ask how much each contributed instead he asked how much money they were left with. Umar said, 'I still have one half'' while Abu Bakar said, 'I have nothing left but Allah and His Rasul.'

"The moral of the story," said Shaykh Fahmi was that "Sayyidina Abu Bakar taught us to always be loyal and committed to Islam."
To be continued with Habib Zain's tausiyah in the next posting InshaAllah.


  1. Assalamualaikum(wbt),

    One of my favourite sirah about "The Battle of Tabuk". I just cannot help my tears gushing out each and every time when I come accross the story of Tabuk and the sacrifices done the sahaba for it. Thanks Eja or the posting.


  2. Wa'alaikum salam warahmatullah wabarakatuh,
    Dear friend, thank you. You have encouraged me to read further on the Tabuk Battle. May Allah preserve the degree of sensitivity that you have for the sahaba. You are so blessed!
    - Ezza

  3. salam. thanks for the posting. i cud not attend due to a family walimatul urus. at least i know whats going on.

  4. Salam Kak Mastura,
    Thanks for visiting Lisan al-Din.
    See you around InshaAllah.