The Twentieth Narration
‘Abdul Rahman ibn Abi ‘Umairah al Azdi reported that Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam mentioned Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu and said:
اللهم اجعله هاديا مهديا واهد به
O Allah, make him a beacon of guidance, guide him, and guide through him.
This chain of narration is authentic. Imam al Tirmidhi has recorded it and declared it sound. Imam al Bukhari has recorded it in al Tarikh with the following words:
اللهم علمه الكتاب والحساب وقه العذاب
O Allah, teach him the Book and counting, and save him from the punishment.
Similar narrations have been reported from ‘Umar, Ibn ‘Abbas, Abu Hurairah, and ‘Umair ibn Sa’d radiya Llahu ‘anhum.
These narrations have been declared as authentic by a number of scholars. Amongst them, al Ajurri, al Baghawi, al Jawraqani, Ibn ‘Asakir, al Dhahabi, and Ibn Kathir.
Commentary and Lessons Learnt from this Narration:
1. The great virtue of Amir al Mu’minin Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu through the following:
a. The Du’a of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam for him.
b. This narration is a sign of the true prophethood of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Through Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu entire nations accepted Islam.
c. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam made the best of prayers for him; to be guided and to guide others. This is a most beneficial supplication.
d. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam emphasised guidance through him by repeating it, ‘Make him a beacon of guidance’ and ‘Guide through him’.
2. Question: Why did Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam repeat the Du’a of guidance through him?
Answer: This was due to him first ascending the position of governorship and thereafter taking the reins of the khilafah – and Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala knows best -. ‘Umar and ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhuma had appointed him over Sham in the presence of many of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum. He subsequently rose to the seat of khilafah when Hassan ibn ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu handed it to him. He conquered many lands during his reign as recorded in the books of history. Jihad in his time was prevalent and the word of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala, i.e. Islam, supreme. Wealth poured in from all corners of the globe.
3. These authentic and sublime virtues recorded do away with those weak and baseless narrations that seek to discredit him. An example of this is the following (false) narration:
إذا رأيتم معاوية على منبري فاقتلوه
If you see Muawiyah on my pulpit, then kill him.
Ibn Kathir says in al Bidayah, “This narration is, without a doubt, false. If there was any truth to it the Companions radiya Llahu ‘anhum would have hastened to act upon it. They did not fear anyone in carrying out the commands of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala.”
If this narration held any sort of weight, Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu would not have handed the khilafah over to him. He would have left no stone unturned in killing him, fulfilling the desire of his Grandfather salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. If for arguments sake this narration proved to be true, then either Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu had no knowledge of it – which goes against the belief held that he was infallible- or he had knowledge of it but was scared and not brave enough to kill him – which goes against the belief held that he had supernatural powers and was the bravest of men.
Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala save us from such folly!
If it is then said, ‘He gave up his right for the cause of unity,’ Then we will say, ‘If that is what you claim, then follow in his footsteps.’
4. The blessings of the supplication of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam for him had far reaching effects. He sat at the head of the Islamic Empire for twenty years without anybody laying any claim against him. Nor did anyone challenge his khilafah or oppose his rule.
This peace lasted till he remained. The monarchs that came after him faced much opposition which resulted in defectors raising their own empires.
5. Another blessing received through this supplication, is the perfection of both qualities imbued in him; generosity and forbearance. Some scholars have written books solely on the incidents that came about due to these two salient qualities of his. Through this he found a place in the hearts of his subordinates who were pleased to serve him.
6. The supplication of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam translated into him being the most guided of the monarchs in the history of Islam. Ibn Taymiyyah writes:
لم يكن من ملوك المسلمين ملك خير من معاوية ولا كان الناس في زمان ملك من الملوك خيرا منهم في زمن معاوية إذا نسبت أيامه إلى أيام من بعده
There was not a single king of the Muslims better than Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu nor were there ever any subjects of a king who were better than the subjects of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. This is when you compare his rule to the rule of those after him.
Ibn Taymiyyah further states, “The virtues of Muawiyah in the light of justice and his inner faith and showing it in both deed and action are innumerable.”
A man came to Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma and said:
هل لك في أمير المؤمنين معاوية إنه أوتر بركعة قال أصاب إنه فقيه
Do you have any reservations regarding Muawiyah? He has read a single unit in the witr prayer. Ibn ‘Abbas replied, “He is correct in his action, he is a jurist in his own right.”
Abu al Darda’ radiya Llahu ‘anhu says:
وعن أبي الدرداء قال ما رأيت أحدا أشبه صلاة بصلاة رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم من إمامكم هذا يعني معاوية
I have not seen anyone performing a salah that resembles the salah of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam more than your Imam, i.e. Muawiyah.
This is the veneration of two giants amongst the galaxy of the Sahabah in favour of the deep faith and knowledge of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhu gives testimony to his knowledge and Abu al Darda’ to the perfection of his salah. There are many other narrations that echo similar sentiments.
7. Another blessing he had secured by virtue of the supplication of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is him being given glad tidings of Jannat. Umm Haram bint Milhan radiya Llahu ‘anha says she heard the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saying:
أول جيش من أمتي يغزون البحر قد أوجبوا
Paradise is granted to the first batch of my followers who will undertake a naval expedition.
The scholars sate; the first person to head a naval expedition was Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
Anas ibn Malik radiya Llahu ‘anhu says whilst mentioning the incident of Umm Haram bint Milhan radiya Llahu ‘anha:
أول ما ركب المسلمون البحر مع معاوية
Muawiyah was the first from the Muslims to take to the seas.
8. Holding firm to the company of the scholars and serving them can attract innumerable blessings.
9. The desirability of taking prayers from the pious.
10. Question: If Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu was rightly guided why did he fight against ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu?
Answer: Firstly, no one is of the opinion that guidance equals infallibility. Secondly, Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu was an authority in Islamic law. He chose to exercise this authority of his which concluded in the battles that took place between the Muslims. The Qur’an and the Ahadith are clear that one exercising his authority in legal matters will not be held accountable if he falters, provided that person is an authority. Ponder over the following narration of Hassan ibn ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhuma:
ان ابني هذا سيد ولعل الله أن يصلح به بين فئتين من المسلمين
This son of mine is a Sayed and perhaps Allah will reconcile two groups of Muslims through him.
This narration proves that both groups that fought were most definitely Muslims. Neither does being guided nor being entered into Paradise require one to not have committed a mistake.
11. Question: Does this contradict the following supplication made against him as recorded in Sahih Muslim:
أشبع الله بطنه لا
May Allah never fill your belly.
Answer: There is no contradiction between the two. The supplication of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, for or against a Muslim results only in mercy. The following narration of Sahih Muslim attests to this:
Anas ibn Malik radiya Llahu ‘anhu says:
كانت عند أم سليم يتيمة وهي أم أنس فرأى رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم اليتيمة فقال آنت هيه لقد كبرت لا كبر سنك فرجعت اليتيمة إلى أم سليم تبكي فقالت أم سليم ما لك يا بنية قالت الجارية دعا علي نبي الله صلى الله عليه وسلم أن لا يكبر سني فالآن لا يكبر سني أبدا أو قالت قرني فخرجت أم سليم مستعجلة تلوث خمارها حتى لقيت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فقال لها رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم ما لك يا أم سليم فقالت يا نبي الله أدعوت على يتيمتي قال وما ذاك يا أم سليم قالت زعمت أنك دعوت أن لا يكبر سنها ولا يكبر قرنها قال فضحك رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم ثم قال يا أم سليم أما تعلمين أن شرطي على ربي أني اشترطت على ربي فقلت إنما أنا بشر أرضى كما يرضى البشر وأغضب كما يغضب البشر فأيما أحد دعوت عليه من أمتي بدعوة ليس لها بأهل أن يجعلها له طهورا وزكاة وقربة يقربه بها منه يوم القيامة وقال أبو معن يتيمة بالتصغير في المواضع الثلاثة من الحديث
There was an orphan girl with Umm Sulaim (who was the mother of Anas).
Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saw that orphan girl and said, “O, it is you; you have grown young. May you not advance in years!”
That slave-girl returned to Umm Sulaim weeping.
Umm Sulaim said, “O daughter, what is the matter with you?”
She said, “Allah’s Apostle salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has invoked a curse upon me that I should not grow in age and thus I would never grow in age,” or she said, in my (length) of life.
Umm Sulaim went out wrapping her head-dress hurriedly until she met Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.
He said to her, “Umm Sulaim, what is the matter with you?”
She said, “Allah’s Apostle, you invoked a curse upon my orphan girl.”
He said, “Umm Sulaim, what is that?”
She said, “She (the orphan girl) states you have cursed her saying that she might not grow in age or grow in life.”
Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam smiled and then said, “Umm Sulaim, don’t you know that I have made the following pact with my Lord: I am a human being and I am pleased just as a human being is pleased and I become displeased just as a human being becomes displeased, so for any person from amongst my Ummah whom I curse and he in no way deserves it, let that, O Lord, be made a source of purification and purity and nearness to (Allah) on the Day of Resurrection.”
Imam Muslim rahimahu Llah has brought the narration of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu right after the above narration for the same reason.
12. It is desirable for the scholars and pious to pray on behalf of those leaders from whom goodness is hoped.
 Musnad Imam Ahmed, Hadith: 17438.
 See also, Tarikh Dimashq, 63679. This narration has been declared as authentic by Ibn Khuzaimah, Ibn Hibban, Ibn Asakir, and Ibn Taymiyyah amongst others.
 Al Bidayah wa al Nihayah, vol. 11 pg. 419.
 Minhaj al Sunnah, vol. 3 pg. 185.
 Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 2766.
 Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 2646.
 Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 3536.
 Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2604.
 Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2603.