The Second Narration

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The Second Narration

 

‘Amr ibn Maymun narrated:

 

رأيت عمر بن الخطاب رضي الله عنه قبل أن يصاب بأيام بالمدينة وقف على حذيفة بن اليمان وعثمان بن حنيف قال كيف فعلتما أتخافان أن تكونا قد حملتما الأرض ما لا تطيق قالا حملناها أمرا هي له مطيقة ما فيها كبير فضل قال انظرا أن تكونا حملتما الأرض ما لا تطيق قال قالا لا فقال عمر لئن سلمني الله لأدعن أرامل أهل العراق لا يحتجن إلى رجل بعدي أبدا قال فما أتت عليه إلا رابعة حتى أصيب قال إني لقائم ما بيني وبينه إلا عبد الله بن عباس غداة أصيب وكان إذا مر بين الصفين قال استووا حتى إذا لم ير فيهن خللا تقدم فكبر وربما قرأ سورة يوسف أو النحل أو نحو ذلك في الركعة الأولى حتى يجتمع الناس فما هو إلا أن كبر فسمعته يقول قتلني أو أكلني الكلب حين طعنه فطار العلج بسكين ذات طرفين لا يمر على أحد يمينا ولا شمالا إلا طعنه حتى طعن ثلاثة عشر رجلا مات منهم سبعة فلما رأى ذلك رجل من المسلمين طرح عليه برنسا فلما ظن العلج أنه مأخوذ نحر نفسه وتناول عمر يد عبد الرحمن بن عوف فقدمه فمن يلي عمر فقد رأى الذي أرى وأما نواحي المسجد فإنهم لا يدرون غير أنهم قد فقدوا صوت عمر وهم يقولون سبحان الله سبحان الله فصلى بهم عبد الرحمن صلاة خفيفة فلما انصرفوا قال يا ابن عباس انظر من قتلني فجال ساعة ثم جاء فقال غلام المغيرة قال الصنع قال نعم قال قاتله الله لقد أمرت به معروفا الحمد لله الذي لم يجعل ميتتي بيد رجل يدعي الإسلام قد كنت أنت وأبوك تحبان أن تكثر العلوج بالمدينة وكان العباس أكثرهم رقيقا فقال إن شئت فعلت أي إن شئت قتلنا قال كذبت بعد ما تكلموا بلسانكم وصلوا قبلتكم وحجوا حجكم فاحتمل إلى بيته فانطلقنا معه وكأن الناس لم تصبهم مصيبة قبل يومئذ فقائل يقول لا بأس وقائل يقول أخاف عليه فأتي بنبيذ فشربه فخرج من جوفه ثم أتي بلبن فشربه فخرج من جرحه فعلموا أنه ميت فدخلنا عليه وجاء الناس فجعلوا يثنون عليه وجاء رجل شاب فقال أبشر يا أمير المؤمنين ببشرى الله لك من صحبة رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم وقدم في الإسلام ما قد علمت ثم وليت فعدلت ثم شهادة قال وددت أن ذلك كفاف لا علي ولا لي فلما أدبر إذا إزاره يمس الأرض قال ردوا علي الغلام قال يا ابن أخي ارفع ثوبك فإنه أبقى لثوبك وأتقى لربك يا عبد الله بن عمر انظر ما علي من الدين فحسبوه فوجدوه ستة وثمانين ألفا أو نحوه قال إن وفى له مال آل عمر فأده من أموالهم وإلا فسل في بني عدي بن كعب فإن لم تف أموالهم فسل في قريش ولا تعدهم إلى غيرهم فأد عني هذا المال انطلق إلى عائشة أم المؤمنين فقل يقرأ عليك عمر السلام ولا تقل أمير المؤمنين فإني لست اليوم للمؤمنين أميرا وقل يستأذن عمر بن الخطاب أن يدفن مع صاحبيه فسلم واستأذن ثم دخل عليها فوجدها قاعدة تبكي فقال يقرأ عليك عمر بن الخطاب السلام ويستأذن أن يدفن مع صاحبيه فقالت كنت أريده لنفسي ولأوثرن به اليوم على نفسي فلما أقبل قيل هذا عبد الله بن عمر قد جاء قال ارفعوني فأسنده رجل إليه فقال ما لديك قال الذي تحب يا أمير المؤمنين أذنت قال الحمد لله ما كان من شيء أهم إلي من ذلك فإذا أنا قضيت فاحملوني ثم سلم فقل يستأذن عمر بن الخطاب فإن أذنت لي فأدخلوني وإن ردتني ردوني إلى مقابر المسلمين وجاءت أم المؤمنين حفصة والنساء تسير معها فلما رأيناها قمنا فولجت عليه فبكت عنده ساعة واستأذن الرجال فولجت داخلا لهم فسمعنا بكاءها من الداخل فقالوا أوص يا أمير المؤمنين استخلف قال ما أجد أحدا أحق بهذا الأمر من هؤلاء النفر أو الرهط الذين توفي رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم وهو عنهم راض فسمى عليا وعثمان والزبير وطلحة وسعدا وعبد الرحمن وقال يشهدكم عبد الله بن عمر وليس له من الأمر شيء كهيئة التعزية له فإن أصابت الإمرة سعدا فهو ذاك وإلا فليستعن به أيكم ما أمر فإني لم أعزله عن عجز ولا خيانة وقال أوصي الخليفة من بعدي بالمهاجرين الأولين أن يعرف لهم حقهم ويحفظ لهم حرمتهم وأوصيه بالأنصار خيرا الذين تبوءوا الدار والإيمان من قبلهم أن يقبل من محسنهم وأن يعفى عن مسيئهم وأوصيه بأهل الأمصار خيرا فإنهم ردء الإسلام وجباة المال وغيظ العدو وأن لا يؤخذ منهم إلا فضلهم عن رضاهم وأوصيه بالأعراب خيرا فإنهم أصل العرب ومادة الإسلام أن يؤخذ من حواشي أموالهم ويرد على فقرائهم وأوصيه بذمة الله وذمة رسوله صلى الله عليه وسلم أن يوفى لهم بعهدهم وأن يقاتل من ورائهم ولا يكلفوا إلا طاقتهم فلما قبض خرجنا به فانطلقنا نمشي فسلم عبد الله بن عمر قال يستأذن عمر بن الخطاب قالت أدخلوه فأدخل فوضع هنالك مع صاحبيه

I saw ‘Umar ibn al Khattab radiya Llahu ‘anhu a few days before he was stabbed in Madinah. He was standing with Hudhayfah ibn al Yaman and ‘Uthman ibn Hunayf to whom he said, “What have you done? Do you think that you have imposed more taxation on the land (of al Sawad i.e. Iraq) than it can bear?”

They replied, “We have imposed on it what it can bear because of its great yield.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu again said, “Check whether you have imposed on the land what it cannot bear.”

They said, “No, (we haven’t).”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu then said, “If Allah should keep me alive I will let the widows of Iraq need no men to support them after me.”

But only four days had elapsed when he was stabbed. The day he was stabbed, I was standing and there was nobody between me and him (i.e. ‘Umar) except ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas. Whenever ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu passed between the two rows, he would say, “Stand in straight lines.” When he saw no defect (in the rows), he would go forward and start the prayer. He would recite Surah Yusuf or al Nahl or the like in the first unit so that the people may have the time to join the prayer. As soon as he had began, I heard him saying, “The dog has killed or eaten me,” at the time he (i.e. the murderer) stabbed him. A non-Arab infidel proceeded on carrying a double-edged knife and stabbing all the persons he passed by on the right and left till he stabbed thirteen persons out of whom seven died. When one of the Muslims saw that, he threw a cloak on him. Realizing that he had been captured, the non-Arab infidel killed himself, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu held the hand of ‘Abdul Rahman ibn ‘Awf radiya Llahu ‘anhu and let him lead the prayer. Those who were standing by the side of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu saw what I saw, but the people who were in the other parts of the Mosque did not see anything, but they lost the voice of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu and they were saying, “Subhan Allah! Subhan Allah!” ‘Abdul Rahman ibn ‘Awf radiya Llahu ‘anhu led the people, making it a short prayer.

When they finished the prayer, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “O Ibn ‘Abbas! Find out who attacked me.”

Ibn ‘Abbas kept on looking here and there for a short time and came to say, “The slave of Mughirah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.”

On that ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “The craftsman?”

Ibn ‘Abbas said, “Yes.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “May Allah curse him. I did not treat him unjustly. All the praises are for Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala who has not caused me to die at the hand of a man who claims himself to be a Muslim. No doubt, you and your father (‘Abbas) used to love to have more non-Arab infidels in Madinah.” ‘Abbas had the greatest number of slaves.

Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma said to ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu. “If you wish, we will do.” He meant, “If you wish we will kill them.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “You are mistaken (for you cannot kill them) after they have spoken your language, prayed towards your Qiblah, and performed Hajj like yours.”

Then ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was carried to his house, and we went along with him, and the people were as if they had never suffered a calamity before.

Some said, “Do not worry (he will be alright soon).”

Some said, “We are afraid (that he will die).”

Then an infusion of dates was brought to him and he drank it but it came out (of the wound) of his belly. Then milk was brought to him and he drank it, and it also came out of his belly. The people realized that he would die. We went to him, and the people came, praising him.

A young man came saying, “O leader of the believers! Receive the glad tidings from Allah to you due to your company with Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and your superiority in Islam which you know. Then you became the ruler (i.e. Khalifah) and you ruled with justice and finally you have been martyred.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “I wish that all these privileges will counterbalance (my shortcomings) so that I will neither lose nor gain anything.”

When the young man turned back to leave, his clothes seemed to be touching the ground. ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “Call the young man back to me.”

When he came back ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “O son of my brother! Lift your clothes, for this will keep your clothes clean and save you from the punishment of your Lord.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu further said, “O ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar! See how much I am in debt to others.”

When the debt was checked, it amounted to approximately eighty-six thousand.

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “If the property of ‘Umar’s family covers the debt, then pay the debt thereof; otherwise request it from Bani ‘Adi bin Ka’b, and if that too is not sufficient, ask for it from Quraysh tribe, and do not ask for it from anyone else, and pay this debt on my behalf.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu then said (to ‘Abdullah), “Go to ‘Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha, the mother of the believers, and say, ‘‘Umar sends his greetings to you.’ But do not say, ‘Amir al Mu’minin,’ because today I am not the leader of the believers. And say, ‘‘Umar ibn al Khattab asks permission to be buried with his two companions (i.e. the Prophet, and Abu Bakr).’”

‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu greeted ‘Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha and asked for permission for entering, he then entered and found her sitting and weeping.

He said to her, “‘Umar ibn al Khattab send his greetings, and asks permission to be buried with his two companions.”

She said, “I wished to have this place for myself, but today I prefer ‘Umar to myself.”

When he returned it was said to ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, “‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar has come.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “Make me sit up.”

Somebody supported him against his body and ‘Umar asked (‘Abdullah), “What news do you have?”

He said, “O Leader of the Believers! It is as you wish. She has given the permission.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “Praise be to Allah, there was nothing more important to me than this. When I die, take me, and greet ‘Aisha and say, ‘‘Umar ibn al Khattab asks permission (to be buried with the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam,’ and if she gives the permission, bury me there, and if she refuses, then take me to the graveyard of the Muslims.”

Then Hafsah radiya Llahu ‘anha, the Mother of the Believers, came with many other women walking with her. When we saw her, we went away. She went in to ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu and wept there for some time. When the men asked for permission to enter, she went into another place, and we heard her weeping inside.

The people said to ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu “O Amir al Mu’minin! Appoint a successor.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “I do not find anyone more suitable for the job than the following persons or group whom Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had been pleased with before he died.”

Then ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu mentioned ‘Ali, ‘Uthman, Zubair, Talhah, Sa’d, and ‘Abdul Rahman ibn ‘Awf radiya Llahu ‘anhum and said, “‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar will be a witness to you, but he will have no share in the rule. His being a witness will compensate him for not sharing the right of ruling. If Sa’d becomes the ruler, it will be fine, otherwise whoever becomes the ruler should seek his help, as I have not dismissed him because of disability or dishonesty.”

‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu added, “I advise that my successor takes care of the early Muhajirin; to know their rights and protect their honour. I also advise that he be kind to the Ansar who had lived in Madinah before the emigrants and belief had entered their hearts before them. I advise that the ruler should accept the good of the righteous among them and excuse their wrongdoers, and I advise that he should do good to all the people of the towns, as they are the protectors of Islam and the source of wealth and the source of annoyance to the enemy. I also recommend that nothing be taken from them except from their surplus with their consent. I also recommend that he do good to the Bedouins, as they are the origin of the Arabs and the very fibre of Islam. He should take from what is inferior, amongst their properties and distribute that to the poor amongst them. I also recommend him concerning Allah and His Apostles protected peoples (i.e. Dhimmis) to fulfil their contracts and to fight for them and not to overburden them with what is beyond their ability.”

So, when ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu passed away, we carried him out and set out walking.

‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu greeted ‘Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha and said, “‘Umar ibn al Khattab asks for the permission.”

‘Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha said, “Bring him in.”

He was brought in and buried beside his two companions.[1]

 

‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma has the following added in his narration:

 

وضع عمر على سريره فتكنفه الناس يدعون ويصلون قبل أن يرفع وأنا فيهم فلم يرعني إلا رجل آخذ منكبي فإذا علي بن أبي طالب فترحم على عمر وقال ما خلفت أحدا أحب إلي أن ألقى الله بمثل عمله منك وايم الله إن كنت لأظن أن يجعلك الله مع صاحبيك وحسبت إني كنت كثيرا أسمع النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول ذهبت أنا وأبو بكر وعمر ودخلت أنا وأبو بكر وعمر وخرجت أنا وأبو بكر وعمر

When the body of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was put on his bed, the people gathered around him and invoked Allah and prayed for him before the body was taken away, and I was amongst them. Suddenly I felt somebody taking hold of my shoulder and found that it was ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib.

‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu invoked Allah’s Mercy for ‘Umar and said, “O ‘Umar! You have not left behind any person whose deeds I like to imitate and meet Allah with more than I like your deeds. By Allah! I always thought that Allah would keep you with your two companions, for very often I used to hear the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saying, ‘I, Abu Bakr and ‘Umar went someplace; I, Abu Bakr and ‘Umar entered somewhere; and I, Abu Bakr and ‘Umar went out.’”[2]

 

Commentary and Lessons Learnt from this Narration:

1. The excellence of Amir al Mu’minin, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, amongst them:

 
  • Indication towards the consensus of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum and the Ahlul Bayt of his virtue being only second to that of Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
  • He was a martyr in his passing. This is also a sign of the truth of the prophethood of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, as this was a prophecy fulfilled.
  • His being buried next to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. None besides him hold this merit.
  • An indication to his khilafah after that of Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu by the statement, “‘I, Abu Bakr and ‘Umar went someplace…”
 

2. Recognition of the justice and piety of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu in his recurrent seeking of permission from ‘Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha to be buried next to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. When asking during his life time he made it a point to be referred to as ‘Umar, and not the ‘Amir al Mu’minin’, fearing she may concede due to his leadership position. He further bequeathed that permission be asked once more after his death when he holds no power. One who studies this piety and justice of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu will be left with no doubt that he could never oppress or hurt the Ahlul Bayt, as the Shia believe.

 

3. The narration provides proof to the belief that one who dies whilst oppressed passes away as a martyr. There is a narration in al Muwatta’ that records the prayer of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

 

اللَّهُمَّ إنِّي أَسْأَلُك شَهَادَةً فِي سَبِيلِك وَوَفَاةً بِبَلَدِ رَسُولِك

O Allah, I ask of you, martyrdom in your path and death in the city of your Prophet.[3]

 

The commentator Sulaiman ibn Khalf al Baji writes:

 

اجمع المسلمون على ان هذا الدعاء مستجاب و انه رضي الله عنه شهيد و هذا يقتضي على ان من قتل بهذا الوجه

وإن لم يقتل في حرب ولا مدافعة فإنه شهيد والله أعلم

There is consensus amongst the Muslims that this Du’a was accepted and that he passed away as a martyr. This also necessities that whoever is killed in this manner, though not in war or defence, will die as a martyr. And Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala knows best.[4]

 

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam too had foreseen and predicted the martyrdom of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu. This divine prediction is found in a narration of Sahih al Bukhari as narrated by Anas radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

 

أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم صعد أحدا وأبو بكر وعمر وعثمان فرجف بهم فقال اثبت أحد فإنما عليك نبي وصديق وشهيدان

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, Abu Bakr, ‘Umar, and ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhum climbed Uhud (mountain) and it shook with them on it, so the Prophet of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “Be firm O Uhud! For there is none upon you except a Prophet, a Siddiq, and two martyrs.”[5]

 

Ka’b al Ahbar came to ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu and said:

 

يا أمير المؤمنين، الحق من ربك فلا تكونن من الممترين، قد كنت أنبأتك أنك شهيد ، قال: ومن أين لي بالشهادة وأنا بجزيرة العرب؟

O Amir al Mu’minin, ponder over the verse:

الْحَقُّ مِنْ رَّبِّكَ فَلَا تَكُوْنَنَّ مِنَ الْمُمْتَرِيْنَ

The truth is from your Lord, so never be among the doubters.

You have been already informed that you are a martyr!

He replied, “How can I attain martyrdom whilst being in the Arabian Peninsula?”[6]

 

Abu Musa al Ash’ari radiya Llahu ‘anhu says:

 

رأى عوف بن مالك أن الناس جمعوا في صعيد واحد وإذا رجل أعلى منهم بقدر ثلاثة أذرع، فقال: من هذا؟ قالوا: عمر بن الخطاب. قال: بماذا يعلوهم؟ قالوا: إن فيه ثلاث خصال: لا يخاف في الله لومة لائم، وإنه خليفة مستخلف، وشهيد مستشهد، فحدث عوف أبا بكر بذلك فدعا عمر فبشره به، فلما ولي عمر، وانطلق إلى الشام رأى عوف بن مالك فقال له: اقصص علي رؤياك فقصها، فقال: أما ألا أخاف في الله لومة لائم فأرجو أن يجعلني الله كذلك، وأما خليفة مستخلف فإني أسأل الله أن يعينني على ما ولاني، وأما شهيد مستشهد فأنى لي بالشهادة وأنا بين ظهراني جزيرة العرب، ولست أغزو والناس حولي، ثم قال: بلى بلى يأتي الله بها إن شاء الله

‘Awf ibn Malik radiya Llahu ‘anhu saw a dream that people had gathered on a single field with one man taller by three arms lengths.

He asked, “Who is this man?”

They told him, “It is ‘Umar ibn al Khattab.”

He asked as to why he was taller than the rest.

They said, “Due to him having three qualities. Firstly, he does not fear reproach in the cause of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala, secondly, he is the appointed Khalifah, and thirdly, he is the foreseen martyr.”

‘Awf ibn Malik radiya Llahu ‘anhu related this to Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu who called on ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu to give him these glad tidings. When ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was in Syria he saw ‘Awf ibn Malik radiya Llahu ‘anhu, called him and asked him to mention his dream.

When he related the dream, ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “As for me not fearing reproach in the cause of Allah, I pray to Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala that he makes me such. As for the matter of the khilafah, I ask of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala to assist me in the responsibility he has given me. As for the matter of me being the foreseen martyr, where will I attain martyrdom whilst I am in the Arabian Peninsula, not fighting. Though, Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala will bring this to pass too if He so wills.”[7]

 

‘Urwah ibn Zubair rahimahu Llah says:

 

لما سقط عليهم الحائط في زمان الوليد بن عبد الملك أخذوا في بنائه فبدت لهم قدم ففزعوا وظنوا أنها قدم النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم فما وجدوا أحدا يعلم ذلك حتى قال لهم عروة لا والله ما هي قدم النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ما هي إلا قدم عمر رضي الله عنه

When the wall fell on them (i.e. graves) during the reign of Walid bin ‘Abdul Malik, the people began repairing it, and a foot appeared to them. The people got scared and thought that it was the foot of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. No one could be found who could tell them about it till ‘Urwah said to them, “By Allah, this is not the foot of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam but it is the foot of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu.”[8]

 

4. The advising of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu even during the final moments of his life. His worry for upholding the faith was greater than his worry for himself.

 

5. The concern and mercy ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu had for the Muhajirin, Ansar, people of the towns, Bedouins, and dhimmis shines through in this narration with his advice of justice on their behalf.

 

6. The one who murdered ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was Abu Lu’lu’ al Majusi (the Zoroastrian). He had not ever prostrated before Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala. It is for this reason we find ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu saying in the narration of Zuhri:

 

الحمد لله الذي لم يجعل قاتلي يحاجني عند الله بسجدة سجدها له قط، ما كانت العرب لتقتلني

All praises are for Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala who hasn’t made my murderer one who has even once prostrated before him. The Arabs would not have killed me.[9]

 

This also portrays that the killing of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu was a plot conspired. Many of the scholars have attested to this in their narrations, such as Ibn Shabbah in his Tarikh al Madinah and Ibn Sa’d in his Tabaqat. Thus, whoever is pleased with the murder of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu or has love for his killer, forms part of the Zoroastrians. Ponder over their despicable fortune, they celebrate the killing and shedding of blood in a sacred month and label apostate a leader of the Muslims who conquered the east and west. They revile a man killed whilst in prayer, reciting the Qur’an, in the House of Allah, in the sacred haram itself, and standing in the prayer place of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. We seek refuge in Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala from such disgrace!

 

7. When the condition, actions, and fear of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala that gripped ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu at the time of his death was mentioned to Hassan al Basri rahimahu Llah, he commented:

 

هكذا المؤمن جمع إحساناً وشفقة، والمنافق جمع إساءة وغرَّة

This is the condition of a true believer; an embodiment of goodness and fear. A hypocrite on the other hand displays only evil and heedlessness.[10]

 

8. The statement of ‘Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anhu, “I wished to have this place for myself, but today I prefer ‘Umar to myself” does away with the blanket ruling of the maxim: ‘There is no giving of preference in matters that raise rewards’. What is apparent from this though, and Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala knows best, is that the common benefit and interest will be taken into consideration at the time and the maxim will be applied, or not, accordingly. Ibn al Qayyim rahimahu Llah states in Madarij al Salikin;

 

وإنما هذا إيثار بمسكن شريف فاضل لمن هو أولى به منها . فالإيثار به قربة إلى الله عز وجل للمؤثر . والله أعلم

This favouring of hers was giving over a sacred place to one worthier than her. Therefore, her giving ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu preference is an accruement of reward, thereby gaining closeness to Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala. And Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala knows best.[11]

 

9. ‘Umar’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu examining and investigating the matters of his governors comes to light in this narration. Furthermore, his stance on not making the tax that lie upon dhimmis a burden is clear as day.

 

10. The lands of a conquered city are not included in the booty, rather it comes under Muslim ownership on which a tax is levied. This tax is then used in the interests of the ummah.

 

11. Imam al Nawawi writes in his commentary on Sahih Muslim:

 

أجمعوا على أن الخليفة إذا حضرته مقدمات الموت وقبل ذلك يجوز له الاستخلاف ، ويجوز له تركه ، فإن تركه فقد اقتدى بالنبي صلى الله عليه وسلم في هذا ، وإلا فقد اقتدى بأبي بكر ، وأجمعوا على انعقاد الخلافة بالاستخلاف ، وعلى انعقادها بعقد أهل الحل والعقد لإنسان إذا لم يستخلف الخليفة ، وأجمعوا على جواز جعل الخليفة الأمر شورى بين جماعة ، كما فعل عمر بالستة

There remains consensus that be it when the time of death draws near or prior to that, it is permissible for the Khalifah to appoint a successor just as it is permissible for him to not appoint one. If he does not appoint an individual, he has followed in the footsteps of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. If he chooses to appoint, he has taken his cue from Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Khilafah through appointment is universally recognised amongst the scholars. Similarly, appointment through the recognition of Muslim masses is considered true. Appointing a group to consult and nominate each other for the post of khilafah is permissible as ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu had done.[12]

 

12. Why did ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu confine the group he had appointed to consult and nominate to six people. Why did he not include Sa’id ibn Zaid radiya Llahu ‘anhu, a Sahabi given glad tidings of paradise and with whom Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was pleased before passing?

This is a result of the piety and justice of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu. He did not wish for a the khilafah to have a sense of family hierarchy as Sa’id ibn Zaid radiya Llahu ‘anhu was his uncle and brother-in-law. When someone suggested the khilafah go to his son, ‘Abdullah, after his demise he retorted:

 

قاتلك الله والله ما أردت الله بهذا أستخلف رجلا ليس يحسن يطلق امرأته

May you be disgraced! You are not sincere in this statement of yours. Should I appoint a man who does not know the details of divorcing his wife?[13]

 

However, keeping his son in mind, he did include him in a consultative capacity without allowing him the possibility of being appointed.

 

13. In his advice for care of the Bedouins there is a great lesson for the leaders of the Muslims; these village dwellers make up an important faction of the ummah. This has rung true throughout history with them supporting the wars and protecting the forts. Their sublime character and natural predisposition is second to none.

 

14. Ibn ‘Abdul Barr narrates from ‘Amr ibn Maymun in his book al Isti’ab that Abu Lu’lu’ was a Christian. However, in the chain supporting this narration there is ‘Ali ibn Mujahid who has been accused of fabricating Ahadith in maghazi (a genre of prophetic biography in Islamic literature), by Yahya ibn Ma’in rahimahu Llah.

This is quite evident as there is no narrator that collaborates this. On the contrary, what has been widely accepted is that he was a Zoroastrian captive of Persian origin. This is supported by the narration of Ibn ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhuma recorded in the Ahad of Ibn Abi Asim and the Kabir and Awsat of al Tabarani. Similarly, this narration has been included in the book of Ibn ‘Asakir and al Haythami has recorded it as Hassan. He also narrates the same from Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma. The narration of ‘Amr ibn Maymun is noted in the text of Ibn Abi Shaybah. Ibn Abi Shaybah narrates the same from several Tabi’in as well with an authentic chain from ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu. ‘Abdul Razzaq has it from Zuhri and Ibn Shabbah his Tarikh al Madinah on the authority of Muhammad ibn ‘Amr ibn ‘Alqamah.

 

15. One who is considered a martyr according to the Shari’ah but is not killed in battle will be given the ritual post death bath and the funeral prayer will be read over him (as opposed to the martyr killed in battle).

 

16. The narration states, ‘the people were as if they had never suffered a calamity before.’ This displays the great impact the death of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu had on the general masses. The scholars of the past have recorded the statements of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum and the Ahlul Bayt at the loss of ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu which goes to show the love and reverence they had for him. Furthermore, it paints a picture of his importance to the Islamic cause.

 

17. ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu, a well-respected figure of the Ahlul Bayt wishes to be like ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu as established in this narration.

 

18. Keeping the scholars and men of wisdom close plays a great role in the political arena of leaders.

 

19. Allowing many disbelievers residence in an Islamic community may have adverse consequences.

 

NEXT⇒ The Third Narration


[1] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3497.

[2] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3482.

[3] Al Muwatta’, Hadith: 990.

[4] Al Muntaqa li al Baji, part. 3 pg. 209.

[5] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3472.

[6] Tabaqat ibn Sa’d, vol. 3 pg. 342.

[7] Ansab al Ashraf, vol. 3 pg. 429.

[8] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 1326.

[9] Tabaqat ibn Sa’d, vol. 4 pg. 336.

[10] Fath al Bari, vol. 7 pg. 81

[11] Madarij al Salikin, vol. 2 pg. 284.

[12] Sharh Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 1823.

[13] Tabaqat ibn Sa’d, vol. 3 pg. 343.