The Twenty Fourth Narration

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The Twenty Fourth Narration

 

Anas radiya Llahu ‘anhu narrates:

 

قال غاب عمي أنس بن النضر عن قتال بدر فقال يا رسول الله غبت عن أول قتال قاتلت المشركين لئن الله أشهدني قتال المشركين ليرين الله ما أصنع فلما كان يوم أحد وانكشف المسلمون قال اللهم إني أعتذر إليك مما صنع هؤلاء يعني أصحابه وأبرأ إليك مما صنع هؤلاء يعني المشركين ثم تقدم فاستقبله سعد بن معاذ فقال يا سعد بن معاذ الجنة ورب النضر إني أجد ريحها من دون أحد قال سعد فما استطعت يا رسول الله ما صنع قال أنس فوجدنا به بضعا وثمانين ضربة بالسيف أو طعنة برمح أو رمية بسهم ووجدناه قد قتل وقد مثل به المشركون فما عرفه أحد إلا أخته ببنانه قال أنس كنا نرى أو نظن أن هذه الآية نزلت فيه وفي أشباهه من المؤمنين رجال صدقوا ما عاهدوا الله عليه إلى آخر الآية وقال إن أخته وهي تسمى الربيع كسرت ثنية امرأة فأمر رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم بالقصاص فقال أنس يا رسول الله والذي بعثك بالحق لا تكسر ثنيتها فرضوا بالأرش وتركوا القصاص فقال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم إن من عباد الله من لو أقسم على الله لأبره

My uncle Anas ibn al Nadr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was absent from the Battle of Badr and he said, “O Messenger of Allah! I was absent from the first battle you fought against the polytheists, and if Allah gives me the opportunity to participate in a battle against the polytheists, Allah will see what I do.”

So he encountered the Battle of Uhud. The Muslims left the positions (the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam told them to keep) and were temporarily defeated, he said, “O Allah! excuse these people (i.e., the Muslims) for what they have done, and I free myself from what the polytheists have done.”

Then he went forward with his sword and met Sa’d ibn Muaz and said to him, “By the Lord of the Ka’bah! I can smell the fragrance of Jannat from a place closer than Uhud Mount.”

Sa’d said, “O Messenger of Allah, what he did was beyond my power.”

Anas said, “We saw over eighty wounds on his body caused by stabbing, striking, and shooting of arrows and spears. We found that he was killed, and mutilated by the polytheists. Nobody was able to recognize him except his sister who recognized him by the tips of his fingers.”

Anas radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “We believe that the Ayah (hereunder) refers to him and his like:

 

مِّنَ الْمُؤْمِنِيْنَ رِجَالٌ صَدَقُوْا مَا عَاهَدُوْا اللَّهَ عَلَيْهِ فَمِنْهُمْ مَّنْ قَضَىٰ نَحْبَهُ وَمِنْهُمْ مَّنْ يَنْتَظِرُ

Among the believers are men true to what they promised Allah. Among them is he who has fulfilled his vow [to the death], and among them is he who awaits [his chance].[1]

 

His sister Al Rubayyi’ broke a front tooth of a woman and Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam ordered for retaliation. On that Anas ibn al Nadr radiya Llahu ‘anhu said, “O Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam! By Him Who has sent you with the Truth, my sister’s tooth shall not be broken.” Then the opponents of his sister accepted the compensation and gave up the claim of retaliation. Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “There are some people amongst Allah’s slaves whose oaths are fulfilled by Allah when they take them.”[2]

 

Commentary and Lessons Learnt from this Narration:

1. There is great virtue and honour in favour of Anas ibn al Nadr radiya Llahu ‘anhu in this narration. Hereunder are some reasons:

 

a. A verse was revealed in favour of him, which will be recited till the Day of Judgment.

b. His deep seeded faith in Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala and His Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam can be understood from his statement, “If Allah gives me the opportunity to participate in a battle against the polytheists, Allah will see what I do”

c. He had accomplished a feat that Sa’d ibn Muaz radiya Llahu ‘anhu – a great and noble Companion- acknowledged he could not match. His heroic plunge into the enemy lines culminated in his martyrdom with wounds covering his body so much so that his sister could only identify him by his fingers. The narrations of Sunan al Nasa’i and Tayalisi refer to his fingers as being particularly elegant and noticeable which were crucial in his identification.

d. His martyrdom was on the greatest of days; the day of Uhud. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had a special place in his heart for the martyrs of Uhud which he would display by visiting them and pray on their behalf. Towards the end of his life, Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed for the martyrs of Uhud. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “I shall be a witness for these on the Day of Qiyamah.”[3]

e. He was from amongst those pure and pious men whose oath would be seen through by Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala!

f. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala blessed him with the sweet fragrance of paradise before his martyrdom. This is literal in its meaning, not figurative as Ibn Battal and others have opined. The early scholars believed in pious men being blessed with supernatural phenomena (karamat) when authentic and correct. This is a karamat narrated by two of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum.

 

2. The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum truly held on to the belief that their lives were insignificant in relation to the cause of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala. The love they had for Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala transcended their physical limitations. A man with just ten wounds would fall, what of twenty, forty and eighty! Remaining steadfast till his body was wounded, stabbed, and pierced to disfigurement is something otherworldly; it was a closeness he shared with Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala that gave him superhuman strength.

 

3. Each of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum were unique in their specific virtue, yet the same in their base beliefs, convictions, faith, and love.

 

4. The fact that the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum gave up their lives for the cause of Islam is proof of their love for Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala and Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. They were prepared to put their health, wealth, and lives at stake for their Lord. If this isn’t a show of their true faith and unwavering conviction, what else could be? Those unfortunate and wretched souls who deem the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum hypocrites or haters of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam should carefully reconsider their sentiments and statements. Such statements are nothing but lies!

 

5. The true faith of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum with the Qur’an serving as a witness to this. The Qur’an says:

 

مِّنَ الْمُؤْمِنِيْنَ رِجَالٌ صَدَقُوْا مَا عَاهَدُوْا اللَّهَ عَلَيْهِ فَمِنْهُمْ مَّنْ قَضَىٰ نَحْبَهُ وَمِنْهُمْ مَّنْ يَنْتَظِرُ

Among the believers are men true to what they promised Allah. Among them is he who has fulfilled his vow [to the death], and among them is he who awaits [his chance].[4]

 

The Qur’an thus named the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum ‘Muslims’. Muslims who are true to their word, sincere in their pacts, and prepared to sacrifice their lives for the cause of Islam. Furthermore, the Qur’an is clear that the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum were steadfast and were to remain steadfast.

May the faces of those who disregard the word of Allah be blackened! They belie the clear cut words of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala, whilst dreaming up their own falsities.

 

6. Sheikh Tahir ibn ‘Ashur expounds on the following words in his exegesis of the Qur’an:

 

وأما قوله وما بدلوا تبديلا فهو في معنى صدقوا ما عاهدوا الله عليه وإنما ذكر هنا للتعريض بالمنافقين الذين عاهدوا الله لا يولون الأدبار ثم ولوا يوم الخندق فرجعوا إلى بيوتهم في المدينة

وَمَا بَدَّلُوْا تَبْدِيْلًا

And they did not alter [the terms of their commitment] by any alteration.

Is an expression that mirrors ‘men true to what they promised Allah’. It has been brought here as an indication to the broken promises of the hypocrites. They gave their word to Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala that they will stand fast, they however turned their backs on the Muslims and trekked back to Madinah on the day of Khandaq.

This emphasis in expression is probably an indication to the broken promises of the hypocrites and their turning away from Islam when they thought the polytheists would overcome the Muslims.[5]

 

This disproves the falsities of the Batiniyyah who claim apostasy of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum after the passing of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. The following verse further highlights the truth of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum and the falsehood of the hypocrites. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala says:

 

لِّيَجْزِيَ اللَّهُ الصَّادِقِيْنَ بِصِدْقِهِمْ وَيُعَذِّبَ الْمُنَافِقِيْنَ

That Allah may reward the truthful for their truth and punish the hypocrites.[6]

 

7. The virtue of keeping to the pact made with Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala, even though one may have to suffer much pain or ultimately lose one’s life.

 

8. Seeking martyrdom in the path of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala does not fall under the ambit of the prohibition against throwing oneself to destruction.

 

9. Zayn ibn al Munayyir says:

 

من أبلغ الكلام وأفصحه قول أنس بن النضر في حق المسلمين: أعتذر إليك ، وفي حق المشركين: أبرأ إليك ، فأشار إلى أنه لم يرض الأمرين جميعا مع تغايرهما في المعنى

The statement of Anas ibn Nadr radiya Llahu ‘anhu is of the most eloquent of expressions. He said with regards to Muslims, “Allah! excuse these people (i.e. the Muslims) for what they have done, and I free myself from what the polytheists have done.” He displayed displeasure for both acts yet used vastly different expressions.[7]

 

10. A man who sacrifices himself by leaving his loved ones to become a beloved of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala reaches the highest stages of those making sacrifices to become close friends of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala. Imam al Nawawi has therefore included chapter in his book Riyad al Salihin, entitled ‘The Chapter of Sacrifice.’

 

11. Fighting single-handedly against an army of disbelievers does not constitute throwing oneself to destruction. The wording of the narration suggests that Anas ibn Nadr radiya Llahu ‘anhu was by himself when he launched into the enemy lines causing havoc. The narration of Sahih Muslim clearly states, “He fought until he was martyred.” Some scholars like al Qurtubi have deemed it as desirable!

 

12. The above view is strengthened by the following narration recorded by Imam Ahmed, Abu Dawood, Ibn Hibban, and others:

 

عجب ربنا من رجلين : رجل ثار عن وطائه ولحافه من حبه وأهله إلى صلاته ، فيقول لملائكته : انظروا إلى عبدي ثار عن وطائه ولحافه من بين حبه وأهله إلى صلاته رغبة فيما عندي وشفقة مما عندي ، ورجل غزا في سبيل الله فانهزم فعلم ما عليه من الانهزام وما له في الرجوع فرجع حتى أهريق دمه ، فيقول الله لملائكته : انظروا إلى عبدي رجع رغبة فيما عندي وشفقة مما عندي حتى أهريق دمه

Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala is pleased with two men; one who rises from his bed and blanket, leaving his beloved and family for prayer. He says to His angels, “Look at my slave, leaving his ned and blanket between his beloved and family, fearing my punishment and hoping for my reward.” And man who fights in the path of Allah, the Exalted; then his companions fled away (i.e. retreated). But he knew that it was a sin (to flee away from the battlefield), so he returned, and his blood was shed. Thereupon Allah, the Exalted, says to His angels: “Look at My servant; he returned seeking what I have for him (i.e. the reward), and fearing (the punishment) I have, until his blood was shed.”[8]

 

NEXT⇒ The Twenty Fifth Narration


[1] Surah al Ahzab: 23.

[2] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 2651.

[3] Jami’ al Tirmidhi, Hadith: 1036.

[4] Surah al Ahzab: 23.

[5] Al Tahrir wa al Tanwir, vol. 23 pg. 308.

[6] Surah al Ahzab: 24.

[7] See, Fath al Bari under the commentary of hadith 2651.

[8] Musnad Imam Ahmed, Hadith: 3819.