Aisha and the final days of the Nabi’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam life

Her Position in the Sight of the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam
June 8, 2021
Supervisor’s Foreword
June 15, 2021

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Aisha and the final days of the Nabi’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam life

 

How challenging are the moments of separation and how tough upon the soul, had it not been for patience and being pleased with the Decree of Allah—the Mighty and Majestic. Here is Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha passing the last moments of the life of her lover salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. She had not passed the age of 18 at the time.

The Messenger of Allah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam final illness commenced with a headache. The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam entered the dwelling of Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha and she whined:

 

وارأساه قال بل أنا وارأساه

“Oh my head pains.”

He said, “Rather, my head pains.”[1]

 

At this point, the Messenger of Allah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam illness began. It was an ache in his blessed head. The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would mostly be afflicted with headaches. Despite this, he continued visiting his wives [and spending a night by each of them] as normal. As the illness intensified, he continued asking, “Where am I tomorrow? Where will I be tomorrow?”[2] yearning for Sayyidah Aisha’s radiya Llahu ‘anha turn. Understanding this, his wives permitted him to stay where he wishes. From then on, he remained at the home of Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha until he departed from his worldly abode.

Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha gives us an account of this:

 

لما ثقل رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم واشتد به وجعه استأذن أزواجه أن يمرض في بيتي فأذن له فخرج وهو بين الرجلين تخط رجلاه في الأرض بين عباس بن عبد المطلب وبين رجل آخر قال عبيد الله فأخبرت عبد الله بالذي قالت عائشة فقال لي عبد الله بن عباس هل تدري من الرجل الآخر الذي لم تسم عائشة قال قلت لا قال ابن عباس هو علي بن أبي طالب وكانت عائشة زوج النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم تحدث أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم لما دخل بيتي واشتد به وجعه قال هريقوا علي من سبع قرب لم تحلل أوكيتهن لعلي أعهد إلى الناس فأجلسناه في مخضب لحفصة زوج النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ثم طفقنا تصب عليه من تلك القرب حتى طفق يشير إلينا بيده أن قد فعلتن قالت ثم خرج إلى الناس فصلى بهم وخطبهم

When the Messenger of Allah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam illness intensified, he sought permission from his wives to be nursed at my home and they complied to his request. He came out, with his feet dragging on the ground, supported by two men, ‘Abbas ibn ‘Abdul Muttalib and another man.

Ubaidullah continues: I informed ‘Abdullah of what Aisha had to say. ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas asked me, “Do you know who the other man was, the one not named by Aisha.”

“No,” I replied.

Ibn ‘Abbas revealed, “It was ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib.”

Aisha, the wife of the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, continues: When the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was in my home and his illness intensified, he said, “Pour[3] over me seven waterskins [of water] which have not been opened[4] so that I may advise the people.”

We therefore made him sit in a tub[5] belonging to Hafsah, the wife of the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and began pouring water from those waterskins over him until he signalled to us with his hand [to stop] as we had done [what he wanted us to do].[6] He then went out to the people, led them in prayer, and lectured them.

 

Probably some might think that the reason behind the Messenger of Allah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam yearning to be nursed for in the home of Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha is his intense love for her. That is true. In addition, Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala had exclusively favoured Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha with many privileges and natural distinctions and blessed her fully with perfect intelligence, a strong memory, quick understanding, a lively mind, attentive instinctive grasp, the power to call to mind and encompass everything happening in her attainable memory, proficiency in deducing and concluding, and a rare proficiency of ijtihad. In this case, it is not far-fetched that the Messenger of Allah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam reason for being nursed and residing in Sayyidah Aisha’s radiya Llahu ‘anha home was for Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha to memorise all the statements and actions of the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in his last days.

The truth, in which there is no doubt, is that the Muslims have come to learn majority of the affairs of their Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, their Din, and his moments before passing away from the ahadith of Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha.[7]

Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha reports:

 

كان النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول في مرضه الذي مات فيه يا عائشة ما أزال أجد ألم الطعام الذي أكلت بخيبر فهذا أوان وجدت انقطاع أبهري من ذلك السم

The Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would say in his fatal illness, “O Aisha! I continue feeling the pain of the [poisoned] food I tasted at Khaybar. I can now feel the rapture of my aorta[8] due to that poison.”[9]

 

The illness only intensified as the days passed to the point that he was unable to lead the people in salah in the Masjid. There were some supplications which the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would read when ill before blowing upon himself. Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha in a similar manner would recite those protective Surahs and supplications and blow on his hand before rubbing his hand over his body. People were sitting anticipating the arrival of the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam for the prayer. Every time he tried to get up[10], he fell unconscious. He then issued the command:

 

مرواأبا بكر فليصل بالناس قالت عائشة يا رسول الله إن أبا بكر رجل رقيق إذا قرأ القرآن لا يملك دمعه فلو أمرت غير أبي بكر قالت والله ما بي إلا كراهية أن يتشاءم الناس بأول من يقوم في مقام رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قالت فراجعته مرتين أو ثلاثا فقال ليصل بالناس أبو بكر فإنكن صواحب يوسف

“Command Abu Bakr to lead the people in salah.”

Aisha submitted, “O Messenger of Allah! Abu Bakr is an extremely emotional person. He cannot control his tears when reciting the Qur’an. Would you not command someone other than him?”

She explains, “By Allah, it was only the aversion that people would be pessimistic towards the first person to stand at the Messenger of Allah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam place.”

She continues: I repeated my request two or three times.

He said, “Abu Bakr will lead the people in prayer. You are only women of Yusuf[11].”[12]

 

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had left some gold by Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha prior to his fatal illness. He remembered about it during his illness and enquired from her:

 

يا عائشة ما فعلت بالذهب فجاءت ما بين الخمسة إلى السبعة أو الثمانية أو التسعة فجعل يقلبها بيده ويقول ما ظن محمد بالله عز وجل لو لقيه وهذه عنده أنفقيها

“O Aisha, what have you done with the gold?”

[They were brought.] It was between 5, 7, 8 or 9 coins. He began to play with them in his hand and commented, “What is Muhammad’s belief in Allah—the Mighty and Majestic—if he meets Him while these are in his possession? Spend them.”[13]

 

The final moments of the life of the leader of the Messengers salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam drew close. Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha was supporting the Messenger of Allah’s salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam blessed head on her lap. She reports:

 

دخل علي عبد الرحمن وبيده سواك وأنا مسندة رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فرأيته ينظر إليه وعرفت أنه يحب السواك فقلت آخذه لك فأشار برأسه أن نعم فتناولته فاشتد عليه وقلت ألينه لك فأشار برأسه أن نعم فلينته فأمره

‘Abdur Rahman entered upon me holding a miswak in his hand. At the time, I was supporting the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. I noticed him looking at it and knew that he loved the miswak so I asked, “Should I take it for you?” He nodded his head to affirm. I [took it and] handed it to him. It was too hard for him so I asked, “Should I soften it for you?” He again nodded his head in affirmation. I softened it and he brushed his teeth[14] with it.[15]

 

Another narration states:

فاستن بها كأحسن ما رأيته مستنا قط

He brushed his teeth with it in the most pleasant manner I ever saw him brushing.[16]

 

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would seek protection with these words:

 

أَذْهِبِ الْبَاسَ رَبَّ النَّاسِ وَاشْفِ أَنْتَ الشَّافِي لَا شِفَاءَ إِلَّا شِفَاؤُكَ شِفَاءٌ لَا يُغَادِرُ سَقَمًا تقول عائشة فلما ثقل في مرضه الذي مات فيه أخذت بيده فجعلت أمسحه بها وأقولها فنزع يده من يدي وقال اللهم اغفر لي وألحقني بالرفيق الأعلى قالت فكان هذا آخر ما سمعت من كلامه

“O Allah, the Lord of mankind. Remove the sickness and heal. You are the Healer. There is no healing besides Yours, which spares no illness.”

Aisha recounts: As he weighed heavily during his fatal illness, I took his hand and began rubbing it over his body while reciting this. He pulled his hand away from my hand and supplicated, “O Allah, forgive me and join me with the Highest Companion.”

She remarked, “These were the last words I heard him speak.”[17]

 

She reports:

 

كان رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم وهو صحيح يقول إنه لم يقبض نبي قط حتى يرى مقعده من الجنة ثم يحيا أو يخير فلما اشتكى وحضره القبض ورأسه على فخذ عائشة غشي عليه فلما أفاق شخص بصره نحو سقف البيت ثم قال اللهم في الرفيق الأعلى فقلت إذا لا يجاورنا فعرفت أنه الحديث الذي كان يحدثنا وهو صحيح

When he was healthy, the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would say, “No Prophet’s soul is ever taken until he is shown his abode in Jannat, after which he lives or is given a choice.”

When he fell ill and was about to breathe his last, and his head was on Aisha’s thigh, he fell unconscious. After regaining his conscience, he lifted his gaze and fixed it[18] on the roof of the house and then submitted, “O Allah, among the highest companions.”

I said, “Now he will not remain with us.”

I realised that it was the very hadith he would narrate to us while healthy.[19]

 

She relates:

مات النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم و إنه لبين حاقنتي وذاقنتي فلا أكره شدة الموت لأحد أبدا بعد النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم

The Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam passed away while in my bosom[20]. I will never ever disapprove of the intensity of death for anyone after the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

 

Undoubtedly, among the greatest virtues and most significant merits of Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha is that her blessed home was the last abode of the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and his resting place. As such, Sayyidah Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha would feel honoured and proud of this privilege and honour she obtained. She would say:

 

إن من نعم الله علي أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم توفي في بيتي وفي يومي وبين سحري ونحري وأن الله جمع بين ريقي وريقه عند موته

One of the magnificent favours of Allah upon me is that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam passed away in my home, on my day, on my chest. Furthermore, Allah had mixed my saliva with his at the time of his demise.[21] [22]

 

NEXT⇒ Aisha after the demise of the Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam


[1] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 5666; Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2387.

[2] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4450; Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2443.

[3] Hariqu: pour. Tuhfat al Ahwadhi, vol. 1 pg. 389.

[4] Awkiyatuhunn­­—al wika’ (singular): the thread used to tie the mouth of a waterskin. Al Fa’iq, vol. 4 pg. 77.

[5] Al mikhdab: a vessel in which clothes are washed. It is sometimes used to refer to any vessel, be it small or big. Fath al Bari, vol. 1 pg. 301.

[6] That you did what I commanded you i.e. pouring water from the described waterskins. ‘Umdat al Qari, vol. 4 pg. 427.

[7] Sirat al Sayyidah Aisha Umm al Mu’minin, pg. 151, 152.

[8] Al abhur: a vein hidden in the back which is connected to the heart. When it is severed, one dies. Fath al Bari, vol. 8 pg. 131; Lisan al ‘Arab, vol. 4 pg. 83.

[9] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4428.

[10] Yanu’u: stand up. Al Nihayah fi Gharib al Hadith wa al Athar, vol. 5 pg. 122.

[11] Sawahib Yusuf: the women of Yusuf ‘alayh al Salam i.e. in demonstration for what you want and your persistence for what you desire and incline towards. Sharh Muslim, vol. 4 pg. 140.

[12] Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 418.

[13] Musnad Ahmed, vol. 6 pg. 49, Hadith: 24268; Sahih Ibn Hibban, vol. 2 pg. 491, Hadith: 715. The isnad has been labelled hasan by al ‘Iraqi in Takhrij al Ihya’, vol. 4 pg. 294; al Albani in al Silsilah al Sahihah, vol. 6 pg. 320, and Shu’ayb al Arna’ut in Tahqiq Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 24268.

[14] Ammarahu: he brushed his teeth with it. Al istinan: utilising the miswak. Al Nihayah fi Gharib al Hadith wa al Athar, vol. 2 pg. 411; Fath al Bari, vol. 1 pg. 81.

[15] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4449.

[16] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4451.

[17] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 5675; Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2191.

[18] Shukhus al basar: lifting the eyelids and fixing the gaze. Al Nihayah fi Gharib al Hadith wa al Athar, vol. 2 pg. 450.

[19] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4437; Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2444.

[20] Al haqinah: the chasm between the collarbones and the throat. Al Nihayah fi Gharib al Hadith wa al Athar, vol. 1 pg. 416. Al dhaqinah: chin. It is said that it refers to the side of the gullet or the part of the chest which the chin touches. Al Nihayah fi Gharib al Hadith wa al Athar, vol. 2 pg. 162.

[21] Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 4449; Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 2443.

[22] Sirat al Sayyidah Aisha, pg. 151.

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