Accusation: Sayyidah Aisha narrated that the Jinn wept over ‘Umar prior to his demise

Accusation: Sayyidah Aisha harboured enmity for Sayyidina ‘Uthman and commanded, “Kill Na’thal as he has disbelieved.”
February 14, 2018
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February 19, 2018

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Accusation: Sayyidah Aisha narrated that the Jinn wept over ‘Umar prior to his demise

 

The author of the book Ahadith Umm al Mu’minin Aisha reports that Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha said:

 

إن الجن ناحت على عمر قبل موته بثلاثة أيام و قالت أبعد قتيل في المدينة أظلمت له الأرض تهتز العضاه بأسوق

Indeed, the Jinn cried over ‘Umar three days before his demise and said, “What? Has the earth turned dark in the wake of a murder in Madinah, for whose victim the thorn trees quiver on their trunks.”

 

They utilise this to level various allegations against Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha, namely: How can she narrate something which translates into the Jinn having knowledge of the unseen? How did she see the Jinn? Why is she the only one to narrate this to the exclusion of all the other wives of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam whereas they were with her in Hajj with thousands of people?[1]

 

Answer

The person who wrote this desires to label Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha a liar and denounce her ahadith. His ultimate object is to prove that she would fabricate ahadith to her liking.

This can be answered in five ways:

 

1. There is a difference of opinion as to whose couplets these are. Some say that it was composed by al Shammakh[2] while mourning over ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu while others say it is al Muzarrid[3] and yet others say that it is Jaz’ ibn Dirar[4], Shammakh’s brother.[5]

The attribution of couplets has always been a matter of dispute in the books of literature and history, to the extent that at times one cannot possible state with conviction that a certain person said a couplet due to the dispute in its attribution.[6] One of the proofs that it was said to mourn after his demise is that it appears therein:

 

عليك سلام من أمير و باركت يد الله في ذاك الأديم الممزق

Upon you be peace, O Commander, and may Allah bless that lacerated skin.

 

It is the practice of the Arabs to advance the pronoun of the deceased when mourning over him as opposed to when supplicating for him.[7] It appears in the poem as upon you be peace and not as peace upon you.

If it is said that the couplets belong to al Shammakh who is mourning over ‘Umar, as suggested by many, then the objection is eliminated entirely.

 

2. The words nahat al jinn (the Jinn cried) appear in the chain of ‘Abdul Malik ibn ‘Umair — from ‘Urwah — from Aisha which is alluded to above.

Likewise, Ibn Shabbah has recorded it in Tarikh al Madinah[8] and Ibn al Athir in Usd al Ghabah[9].

 

‘Abdul Malik ibn ‘Umair

‘Abdul Malik ibn ‘Umair is known for tadlis (omitting the narrator he hears from). Al Daraqutni and Ibn Hibban have attributed this to him[10] and in this instance he did not clearly mention who he heard this from.

Moreover, there is idtirab (inconsistency) is his narration. Sometimes, he narrates from ‘Urwah from Aisha and sometimes from al Saqr ibn ‘Abdullah from ‘Urwah from Aisha.[11]

Imam Ahmed has said, “His hadith has plenty idtirab (inconsistency) coupled with him not narrating much.”[12]

This proves that this wording of the narration is not established. Yes, al Fakihi[13] and others have narrated it[14] and Hafiz has authenticated it in al Isabah as mentioned, however with different wording.

 

3. The narration does not state that Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha said she saw the Jinn in their form. The Jinn assuming the appearance of men is learnt from the Qur’an and Sunnah. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala declares:

 

وَإِذْ زَيَّنَ لَهُمُ الشَّيْطَانُ أَعْمَالَهُمْ وَقَالَ لَا غَالِبَ لَكُمُ الْيَوْمَ مِنَ النَّاسِ وَإِنِّيْ جَارٌ لَّكُمْ

And [remember] when Satan made their deeds pleasing to them and said, “No one can overcome you today from among the people, and indeed, I am your protector.”[15]

 

Shaitan appearing in the form of a human in front of Sayyidina Abu Hurairah radiya Llahu ‘anhu and his mentioning Ayat al Kursi to him is recorded in hadith.[16] It appears that the Jinn assumed the form of a human and the latter heard his speech.

These two points were raised in the hope of declaring Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha a liar whereas the correct explanation has now come forth, and all praise belongs to Allah.

 

4. As for his objection that only Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha narrated it to the exclusion of all the other wives of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, this is not a matter to raise objections about. Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha has narrated a number of narrations in different chapters of knowledge to the exclusion of the other wives of the Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.[17] However his objection is answered by the wording which appears in some of the narrations:

 

فكنا نتحدث أنه من الجن

We would say that it is from the Jinn.[18]

 

Apparently, she refers to Rasulullah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam wives and those who were present with her as suggested by the context of the hadith, since they are mentioned in the beginning.

 

5.  There is no claim of knowing the unseen in the narration since there is no fixed time specified. Nonetheless, sometimes there are signs which reveal a future event. In that Hajj, many incidents transpired with Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu which we will not mention in detail. However it is established that Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu himself made his camel kneel at al Abtah in Hajj. He then made a basin-shaped hill with sand, spread his shawl over it, and lay down. Thereafter, he lifted his hands to the sky and supplicated, “O Allah! I have aged, my strength has weakened, and my populace have increased. So take me to You without any shortfall or shortage on my part.”[19]

There are circumstances present by which a man realises his imminent demise, and this is not termed fortune-telling. It appears in Sahih al Bukhari that Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:

 

إن جبريل كان يعارضني القرآن كل سنة مرة و إنه عارضني العام مرتين و لا أراه إلا حضر أجلي

Indeed, Jibril would recite the Qur’an to me once every year but this year he recited it twice. I divine from this my imminent demise.[20][21]

 

NEXT⇒ Accusation: Sayyidah Aisha harboured enmity for Sayyidina ‘Uthman and commanded, “Kill Na’thal  as he has disbelieved.”


[1] Ahadith Umm al Mu’minin Aisha vol. 1 pg. 95–98.

[2] Al Shammakh ibn Dirar ibn Harmalah, Abu Sa’id al Mazini al Dhabyani al Ghatfani. He was a renowned poet. He lived in the era of ignorance and Islam. He embraced Islam and was faithful to his religion. He participated in the Battle of al Qadisiyyah. He passed away in the Battle of Muqan in the era of Sayyidina ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu in the year 22 A.H. (al Isabah vol. 3 pg. 353; al A’lam vol. 3 pg. 175).

[3] Muzarrid ibn Dirar ibn Harmalah, al Ghatfani. It is said that his name was Yazid but he was known more by his title. He was a Persian and a poet and lived in the era of ignorance. The era of Islam found him in old age and he embraced the faith. He came to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and read a poem for him. He passed away around 10 A.H. (al Isabah vol. 6 pg. 85; al A’lam vol. 7 pg. 211).

[4] Jaz’ ibn Dirar ibn Harmalah al Ghatfani. A well-known poet. He was a mukhadram (one who lived during the life of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam but only embraced Islam after he passed away). He mourns over Sayyidina ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu with some couplets. (al Wafi bi al Wafiyyat of al Safdi vol. 4 pg. 12; Tabaqat Fuhul al Shu’ara’ of al Jumahi vol. 1 pg. 133).

[5] Talqih Fuhum Ahl al Athar of Ibn al Jawzi pg. 77.

[6] For notes on attribution of couplets, study Lijam al Aqlam of Abu Turab al Zahiri pg. 239.

[7] Ithaf al Za’ir wa Itraf al Muqim li al Sa’ir of Abu al Yaman ibn ‘Asakir pg. 86.

[8] Tarikh al Madinah vol. 3 pg. 874.

[9] Usd al Ghabah vol. 4 pg. 156.

[10] Ta’rif Ahl al Taqdis of Ibn Hajar pg. 41.

[11] Al Isti’ab fi Ma’rifat al Ashab vol. 3 pg. 1158.

[12] Tahdhib al Kamal of al Mizzi vol. 18 pg. 373.

[13] Muhammad ibn Ishaq, Abu ‘Abdullah al Makki al Fakihi. The historian of Makkah. He was a contemporary of al Azraqi but passed away after him. Tarikh Makkah is one of his books. He passed away in 272 A.H. (al A’lam vol. 6 pg. 28; Hadyat al ‘Arifin of Ismail Basha vol. 6 pg. 20).

[14] Akhbar Makkah vol. 4 pg. 76.

[15] Surah al Anfal: 48.

[16] Sahih al Bukhari Hadith: 5010.

[17] Lisan al ‘Arab vol. 14 pg. 115.

[18] Al Ahad wa al Mathani of Ibn Abi ‘Asim vol. 1 pg. 104.

[19] Muwatta’ Malik vol. 5 pg. 1203. Ibn ‘Abdul Barr declared it sahih in al Tamhid vol. 23 pg. 92. Al Busairi said in Ithaf al Khiyrah al Maharah vol. 4 pg. 250, “His narrators are the narrators of al Sahih.”

[20] Sahih al Bukhari Hadith: 3624; Sahih Muslim Hadith: 2450.

[21] For further notes on this, see: al Anwar al Kashifah li ma fi Kitab Adwa’ ‘ala al Sunnah min al Zalal wa al Tadlil wa al Mujazafah of al Mu’allimi pg. 113.

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