Death of a Prophet

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Once Makkah was conquered by the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, then he completed the Battle of Tabuk, the people of Thaqif became Muslim and gave the oath of allegiance and then delegations of Arabs began making their way to him from every direction.

This was year 9AH, which was known as the ‘Year of Delegations.’  A delegation from Banu Tamim came and other groups came as well. As they were Muslims, the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, paired off these men to be brothers to other Muslims who had great knowledge and would teach them.

Once the delegation of Tamim came to meet the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, they arrived at the masjid and called him to come out, “Muhammad, come out and talk to us because we need to see you.” By them calling the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, from behind the wall of his house, this bothered him greatly. It was due to this that Allah revealed,

Those who call you from behind the dwellings, most of them have no sense. If they had patience till you came out to them, it would have been better for them. Allah is Forgiving, Compassionate. Surat ul-Hujurat (49), ayat 4-5 so that they would not shout like this to him and address him properly.

Thabit ibn Qais also came with his delegation and became Muslim, while other groups of Arabs listened to poetry said by Hassaan ibn Thabit. After listening, they became Muslim due to the great effect that the poetry had on them and the sincerity in the words that were said to them.

The Banu `Amir also sent a delegation that had in their ranks `Amir ibn at-Tufail, Arbad ibn Qais, Jabbar ibn Salma, these people being the heads of their tribe and also the most forceful and argumentative.

`Amir ibn At-Tufail wanted to kill the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, although he had been told that the people had become Muslim and he should as well.

Once `Amir ibn At-Tufail came to the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and was in his presence, he was saying that he wanted to be his friend and that he had someone with him that also wanted to speak with him.

He was Arbad ibn Qais, who was to be his assistant in the assassination. When Arbad did not come to offer assistance, `Amir lost his nerve and had to leave. They argued on the way back but Allah caused both of them to die of a plague. It was about these that Allah said,

Allah knows what every female carries and by how much the wombs fall short of their time or exceed. Everything has been given due proportion by Him. Surat ur-Ra`d (13), ayah 8 all the way to the end of the ayah.

Both of these women died in the house of Banu Salul with nothing but the plague upon them.

Dimam ibn Tha`labah came from the Banu Sa`d delegation and he brought his camel to the door of the Masjid in Madinah, had it kneel down and hobbled it with his `iqal. He then came inside while the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was sitting among his Companions.

Dimam said, “Which of you is from the sons of Ibn `Abdul Muttalib?” The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said, “I am the son of Ibn `Abdul Muttalib.” Dimam said, “Are you Muhammad?”

He received an affirmative reply and then he said, “Son of `Abdul Muttalib, I come to you to ask some questions. I need to ask some very urgent questions, so you should not find any difficulty in yourself as I only know how to ask these questions in this way.” He was told, “Do not worry, I do not find any anger in myself or any hardship regarding your demeanour.”

Dimam started by saying, “You have said that Allah is your God, the God of those who came before you and those who are to come after. Did Allah send you to us as a Messenger?” He was told, “Allah, yes.”

Dimam then said, “Has Allah commanded you to tell us that we worship Him Alone without any partner for Him, that we leave these rivals which are ancestors had worshipped with Him?” He was told, “Allah, yes.”

Dimam continued, “Is it the case that He ordered you to tell us to pray five times a day?” He said, “Allah, yes.” Dimam Ibn Tha`labah then remarked, “So then he has mentioned the compulsory things of Islam, the prayer, the zakah, the fasting, the Hajj and all the articles of Islam.”

He carried on mentioning each aspect and asking questions until he was satisfied. He then said, “Indeed I bear witness that there is no god but Allah and I bear witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. I will discharge these commands and avoid what has been forbidden.

I will neither do more nor less than what I have been commanded.” He then went to get on his camel and go back to his people. The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said, “If he is truthful, then he will enter the Paradise.” Once Dimam ibn Tha`labah came back to his people, he spoke about Islam at length and called his people to listen to him.

In the delegation of `Abdul Qais, Al-Jarud ibn `Amr came to learn about Islam and he had been a Christian before. Upon becoming Muslim, he went back to his people and spoke to them about Islam.

He told them that he had taken the testimony of faith and that they should as well. People in Bahrain continued to send delegations and Islam became strengthened there.

After that, the region of Yamamah sent a delegation that had within it a man by the name of Musailimah ibn Habib. He along with others in the group, came heavily veiled to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, to ask him questions, which he answered but he mentioned that he would not speak any more to them if they kept hiding themselves from him.

Musailimah was a leader from among them, but he treated him the same and gave him the same amount of charity as the others. This angered Musailimah who on the way back apostated and said that he was actually a prophet as well and shared with the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, in prophethood.

As this was happening, the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, saw a vision and later rose to tell the people.

He preached to them, saying, “People, I have seen Lailat ul-Qadr, then I forgot it. Then I remembered it. I saw two bangles made from gold on my arm and I disliked them, so I blew them off and they flew away. I tell you the meaning of these two bangles as representing two liars to come: one from Yemen and one from Yamamah.”

He was referring to the false prophets Al-Aswad al-`Ansi and Musailimah al-Kadh-dhab, respectively.

He further said after narrating the vision, “The Hour will not come until there shall be thirty false prophets, all of them claiming prophethood.”

Not long after that, a letter came to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. It read:

From Musailimah the Messenger of Allah to Muhammad the Messenger of Allah. Peace be upon you! As for what comes next, I share with you some of the matter of prophethood. Let it be that I have half the Earth and the Quraish have the other half although they are a people that transgress.

The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, had a letter dictated in response in which he said,

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate

From Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah, to Musailimah the Liar. Peace be upon the one who follows the guidance. As for what comes next, the Earth belongs to Allah and He causes among His Slaves to inherit of it whom He wills. The end result of all things is for the pious people.

These events took place in the last of 10AH.

Another delegation came with `Adi ibn Hatim and he was a Christian. After meeting the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, brought `Adi into his home and he was able to see him, `Adi knew that he was a prophet and a messenger.

The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said, “`Adi, perhaps what is keeping you from entering into this religion is what you have seen of the indigent people? By Allah, you should know that a time is coming in which the wealth shall circulate among them in such abundance that there will not be enough people to take hold of it.

Maybe what is holding you back from entering into this faith is that you see the great number of the enemies against this small people and their small numbers against them?

By Allah a time will come in which you will hear about a women leaving from Al-Qadisiyyah on her camel and visiting this Ancient House without fear of robbers.

Maybe what is hindering you from entering this religion is that you see the dominion and authority with people besides them? By Allah, a time will come in which you will hear of the white castles in the land of Babylon being conquered.”

After some questions and some discussion, he entered into Islam with the delegation.

`Adi later said, “I saw the first two prophecies come to pass and the third was remaining. By Allah, all of a sudden it came to pass. I saw the white castles in the land of Babylon conquered and I saw the woman that left from Al-Qadisiyyah on her camel without fear of robbers until she reached the Ancient House.

Then the third thing regarding the wealth I witnessed and it came to pass.” Numerous delegations thereafter came, including those of Hamdan, Rifa`ah ibn Zaid al-Jidhami, Farwah ibn `Amr al-Jidhami, Al-Ash`ath ibn Qais, Sard ibn `Abdullah al-Azdi and many more.

After that the month of Dhul Qa`dah came and the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, prepared to go out for the Hajj and told the people around him to do the same. When he left for Hajj, Madinah was left in the control of Siba` ibn `Arfatah al-Ghifari.

When they headed out, for the intended the Hajj. Once arriving at the place of miqat and heading on, he told those who had decided to make `Umrah that they had to take their animal that they brought as a gift and sacrifice it.

Whoever did not have a gift with him was to go into a state of hall and take off the ihram. It was during this time that the Mother of the Believers, `A’ishah as-Siddiqah, may Allah be pleased with her, received her monthly cycle.

She did not know what to do until the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, told her that she could do all the rites of Hajj but just not Tawaf as she was not in a state of purity to do that. Once everyone had completed their sacrifices, then the heads were shaved all on the Day of Sacrifice.

After that, our mother `A’ishah wanted to make `Umrah so she set out with her brother `Abdur-Rahman from at-Tan`im and this was the place where she started as it was the boundary of the miqat for going into the Sacred Boundary.

The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, kept his ihram on and did not take it off yet as he still had to wait for his sacrifice to be given at the end of the Hajj on 12 Dhul Hijjah. He had sent `Ali ibn Abi Talib to Najran to preach to the people further and `Ali returned to put on the ihram at the miqat place.

Once he came into the presence of his wife Fatimah, the daughter of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, he found that she had already taken off her clothes of ihram. He did not know why this was the case so he went to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.

After explaining all that had occurred on the journey and his travels, he mentioned his query on the ihram. He was told by the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, to make the tawaf around the Ancient House, go into hall like the rest of the Companions.

He was told this twice, but `Ali responded, “Messenger of Allah, I did the ihram just like you. I said when I put on the ihram, ‘Allah, I have put on this ihram and will wear it just as is done by Your Prophet, Slave and Messenger Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.’ ”

So he was asked by the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, “Did you bring any gift with you?” When he responded in the negative, the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said that they would share in his sacrifice and that he would have to keep his ihram on until that time.

So once the time of the Day of Sacrifice came, they made the sacrifice, did the shaving and went into hall. `Ali ibn Abi Talib was involved in an argument with some people as they had come and began offering clothes to the people but had not come to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, who would normally distribute it first.

Some of the people sought to complain about `Ali arguing but the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said, “Do not complain about `Ali. By Allah, he is just the most fearful about Allah! So he should not be complained about at all.”

The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, again re-iterated the proper Hajj rituals that had been revealed. He said, “Listen, the place at `Arafah is one of the central parts of the Hajj. This includes the mountain that is here. All of `Arafah is a central part of Hajj. ”

When he came to Muzdalifah, he said, “Listen, all of Muzdalifah is a central part of the Hajj. It includes the mountains of the area.” Once the sacrifices were done at Mina he told them, “Listen, all of Mina is a central point of Hajj. And all of Mina is a place where sacrifice is conducted.”

He was sure to show the people the major and minor points of Hajj, the points of departure, where to put on and take off the ihram, the central points of Hajj, the stoning of the large idols, the tawaf around the Ancient House, what was permissible and impermissible for Hajj.

This was the clear message. He made the Farewell Pilgrimage and his speech there and the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, did not make Hajj after that.

Upon completion of the Hajj, the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, sent out many delegations and also sent out armies to deal with hostile tribes. Usamah ibn Zaid was sent to the land of Palestine.

Couriers were sent to the different kings and rulers of the Arabs and the others. They were the following: Dihyah ibn Khalifah al-Kalbi went to the King of Byzantium, `Abdullah ibn Hudhafah went to Khusraw of Iran, `Amr ibn Umayyah ad-Damri went to the new king of Ethiopia.

Hatib ibn Abi Balta` went to Muqawqis, head over the land of Alexandria in Egypt, `Amr ibn al-`As went to Jaifar and `Iyad, the two sons of Al-Julandi in `Uman, Salit ibn `Amr went to Thumamah ibn Uthal and Hudhah ibn `Ali, both kings of Yamamah, Al-`Ala ibn Al-Hadrami went to Al-Mundhir ibn Sawi the king of Bahrain and Shuja` ibn Wahb went to Al-Harith ibn Abi Shamr al-Ghassani, King of the lands of Sham and surrounding area.

Before sending them out, the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, addressed them, “Allah has sent me as a mercy and to all of creation. Take what I give you and Allah will show mercy to you and do not dispute and differ with me as the disciples did with `Isa ibn Maryam.”

They asked, “Messenger of Allah, how did they differ?” He said, “He called them to the likeness of what I call you to now. There was the one who came near to him and loved that and submitted. Then there was the other that went far, showed dislike and refused.

`Isa then complained about them to Allah. The time then quickly came upon them and every man among them spoke in the way of the people that he went out to speak with about the faith.”

Those who the Prophet `Isa ibn Maryam, peace be upon him, sent out from the disciples and followers that came after were the following:

Butrus al-Hawari who went with Bulus (he was from the followers after and was not from the disciples to the Romans), Andara’is and Matitya went to the places where the people practice cannibalism, Tumas went to the land of Babylon in the East, Filibis went to the land of Qartajah in Afriqah, Yuhannas went to Efesus, which was the city settled in by the Sleepers of the Cave.

Ya`qubus went to Jerusalem, also called Yerushalayim and Aila’ which was a place around the Holy Land of Sham. Ibn Thilama’ went to the Arabs and this was the land of Al-Hijaz and Simun went to the Berbers and Yahudhah, who was not one of the disciples, went to Judea.

There were also numerous battles during this time as the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, sent out emissaries who met resistance and there were numerous hostile tribes who engaged them in battle throughout the Arabian Peninsula.

One of the great early Companions was a man by the name of Thumamah ibn Uthal. He was from the land of Yamamah and was taken prisoner while trespassing near the camp of the Companions.

They did not know who he was so he was brought to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, who immediately identified him. The Companions, on coming to know who he was, became angry as he had been implicated in the murder of numerous Companions in the Ma`una massacre.

Although this was the case, the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, told them to tie him to a pillar and bring him good food for him to eat while he was prisoner in the Masjid in Madinah.

After he finished his food, the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, asked him to become Muslim but he did not want to and said that if he is killed he is happy and if he is left alive he is happy.

This went on every day with him being told the same thing and treated well. The day came when the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, gave the order for him to be freed.

Thumamah left, but stopped at the area of al-Baqi` and did the purification that he had seen the Muslims doing in the Masjid for the prayers while he had been tied up there. He did the best he could and then headed back and became Muslim.

He gave the oath of allegiance to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him and the Companions brought him food thereafter. Thumamah ibn Uthal ate a small portion, far less than what he had eaten before as an unbeliever. The Companions were surprised by this but the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Are you surprised by this man? A man eats with the intestines of an unbeliever in the beginning of the day and in the last part of the day eats with the intestine of a believer. Indeed, the unbeliever eats with seven intestines and the Muslim eats with one alone!”

Thumamah decided to make `Umrah as a Muslim and once he arrived he was in a fight with the Quraish (this was before the Conquest of Makkah) who noticed that he was Muslim.

They struck his neck, but then some of them said not to continue as he was one of the leaders of Yamamah and his trade links for grain and food were crucial. Once freed, he said to the Quraish, “I am upon the religion of Muhammad! I will have an embargo put on you so that no seeds or grain reach you from Yamamah unless you all enter into his religion!”

They belied him so he kept to his word. Soon starvation came to be the order of the day in Makkah. Makkah wrote a letter to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, saying, “You say that you keep relations, but you have cut our relations.

You have killed our fathers with the sword and then killed our children with hunger.” The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, when he was informed of this had a letter sent to Thumamah telling him to remove the trade embargo. After all of this occurred, the details of the Conquest and such came to be a reality.

In the last few nights of the month of Safar, year 11 AH, the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, began to feel the weight of death begin and it continued into Rabi` ul-Awwal.

He went out one day to Baqi` ul-Gharqad and came back to his family. The following day, it could be seen on his face that his time was little. Abu Muwaihibah (a freed slave and Companion) had gone with him on that night and saw the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, say, “I am asking forgiveness for the people of Al-Baqi` so I would like you to go with me.”

So Abu Muwaihibah went with him and he watched him pray and say, “People of the Graves! There has come to you what shall come to the people; but trials are waiting to come to the living like the sudden appearance of the night and the shadows. One evil time shall follow the other until the time after shall be worse than the time before it.”

He then turned and said to Abu Muwaihibah, “I have been given the keys to the treasures of the earthly life and eternity, then the Paradise. I have chosen between all of that and meeting my Lord and the Paradise.”

Abu Muwaihibah told him to chose this life and eternity but the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, swore by Allah and said that he had chosen the Paradise and meeting his Lord. He then asked forgiveness for the people of Al-Baqi` and turned away.

Our Mother, `A’ishah as-Siddiqah, saw him when he returned. She said, “He came in while I was fixing my hair and I asked if he wanted anything, to which he replied in the negative. He asked me if it would bother me if I died before him and he prayed over me and wrapped me in the burial shrouds and prayed on me and buried me.

I said that by Allah, it surely would as he would go back to my room and spend time there with one or some of his wives. He smiled slightly and then his face filled with colour.

He spent time with each one of his wives until his illness became severe while in the house of Maimunah. He called his wives and asked permission from them that he be transferred to my room and they granted that request.”

During the transfer, he was wearing a yellowish `imamah and supported by two men, one on each side. These were Al-Fadl ibn Al-`Abbas and `Ali ibn Abi Talib. He asked for water to be poured upon him constantly, so much so that Hafsah bint `Umar was told to fetch water skins and pails to do the job. Finally, after having it poured over him so many times, he said, “This is enough. This is enough.”

After some time, the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, came out to speak with the people while wearing his `imamah. He sat on the mimbar and the first thing that he did was to praise Allah and after that pray for the people of Uhud, ask forgiveness for them and he prayed for them greatly.

He then said, “One of the Slaves of Allah has chosen between this life and what Allah possesses and he has chosen what Allah possesses.” When Abu Bakr heard this, he knew exactly what it meant and he started to cry and said, “We would sacrifice ourselves and our children for you!”

He was told, “Be calm, Abu Bakr. Look at these windowed doors in the masjid. Close every pathway to my place except for that of Abu Bakr. I do not know anyone who is better in companionship to me than the two hands from him.

If I was to take any Khalil from the slaves, I would have made Abu Bakr the Khalil but companionship and brotherhood of faith are the order until Allah shall gather us to Him.”

He also made Usamah ibn Zaid in charge of the armies of the Emigrants and the Helpers and the people asked about it. He praised Allah and then he answered them, “People, Send out Usamah ibn Zaid in control of that army. By my life, you have mentioned this about them but you said the same thing of his father before and he is created for this leadership.

His father was likewise chosen for it. Gathering of Emigrants! Be good to the Helpers. Indeed the people shall increase but the Helpers shall not increase more than now. They were the people that were visited and they opened their homes. Mention their good points and overlook their faults.”

Usamah ibn Zaid came to him after the expedition and the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, raised his hands skyward, said nothing but put them on his head. The people knew that he was praying for him. After that, he was heard by our Mother `A’ishah as-Siddiqah constantly saying, “Indeed Allah does not take a prophet in death until he chooses his preference.”

At the time that his death came, he said, “Yes, with the Companions on High from the Paradise.” When our Mother `A’ishah as-Siddiqah heard this, she said, “Oh no! By Allah, he didn’t choose to stay with us! It was then that I knew that he had made his choice from before when he had been talking about making his choice.”

Before his death, he had commanded `A’ishah to have Abu Bakr lead the people in prayer. She responded by saying that her father was a very soft hearted man and used to cry when he recited the Qur’an and that `Umar was a better choice.

He kept on asking and she kept advising until he said, “You are like the companions around Yusuf. Have Abu Bakr lead the people.” Finally the suggestion went forward for Abu Bakr to lead the prayer. `A’ishah was worried as the people would crowd in right after prayer to check on any news or happenings and it would leave her with little time to spend with him.

There was another time when the prayer had come and Bilal ordered the people to prepare as the Adhan and Iqamah had been made. `Umar was told the go forward as the Imam of the prayer but the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, raised his voice, “Where is Abu Bakr?” He was absent at the time. He said after asking, “Oh, Allah. The Muslims are avoiding. The Muslims are avoiding it.”

After `Umar had led the people in prayer, Abu Bakr came forward and was told to lead the people in prayer thereafter. When `Umar noticed this, he asked why he had been put forward for the prayer. One of the Companions explained that when they did not see Abu Bakr they just put him forward. He told him not to do that again.

The next day was a Monday on 12 Rabi` ul-Awwal 11AH. The people were praying the Fajr prayer when the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, lifted the curtain and looked at the people from his doorway. He stood at the doorway of `A’ishah’s house and watched them.

The people almost came out the prayer by seeing that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was happy with them and they were happy. He motioned for them to say as they were and lined up nicely. He then smiled when he saw them lined up in the prayer and how straight they were and their unity.

He then put the curtain down and turned away to prepare himself to join them. It would be the last time he would see the whole Ummah in person and they would all see him alive.

Once he returned to the house of `A’ishah from prayer, she said of the matter, “When he came home he laid in my lap and someone from the family of Abu Bakr came to visit. He had a green siwak in his hand and the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was looking at it intently.

I asked him if he would like it to clean his teeth with and he replied in the affirmative. I then took it and chewed it until it was soft and ready for use. I gave it to him and he used it until he had finished. His head then became heavy and my lap felt heavy. I looked at his face and his gaze met mine.

He said, ‘Indeed, with the Companions on High from the Paradise.’ I said, ‘So you have chosen. You have chosen, by the One who sent you with the truth.’ He then died in that moment.”

At the death of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, he had fought some 27 battles. He had preached in Makkah for 13 years and in Madinah for ten years and died at 63 years of age after receiving his first revelation at 40 years of age.

`A’ishah as-Siddiqah looked at him as his head was between her chest and lap. She set his head on a pillow, raised up from her position and then began to cry with the other women and mourn. `Umar ibn Al-Khattab was so upset that he refused to believe it.

He said, “There are hypocrites who say that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has died. No, he has gone to his Lord just as Musa ibn `Imran went to his Lord. He was gone from his people for 40 days, then he returned to them after that before he died.

By Allah, the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, shall return just as Musa did. I will cut off the hands and feet of those that claim the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, died.”

Abu Bakr came out and was at the door of the Masjid when the news reached him and `Umar was speaking to the people. He did not come out to the people until he first went and came into the presence of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him in the house of `A’ishah.

He was lying at the side of the room and he his cloak was covering him, over his face. Abu Bakr kissed his head and said, “May my father and mother be sacrificed for your sake, the death that Allah wrote for you has come and you have tasted it. You shall not be given another death after.” He then returned the cover to its’ place and came out to `Umar, who was still talking to the people.

He told `Umar to calm down but he continued and would not listen as he was still upset. He decided to begin speaking instead and the people stopped their words and listened. He praised Allah much and then said, “People, whoever served Muhammad, then Muhammad is dead; but for the one who serves and worships Allah, then Allah is every living and will not die.”

He then recited to ayah, Muhammad was only a messenger and messengers before him passed away. Will you turn on your heels if he dies or is killed? Whoever turns on his heels, then Allah will never help him. Allah will indeed help those who are grateful. Surah Ali `Imran (3), ayah 144

The people knew this was the truth. The weight of the situation was too great for `Umar, who collapsed under the weight of his own legs. It was then that he could accept that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, had died.

Now that he had died, the people went to their homes and many mourned while others were devastated and did not know what to do. Many of the scholars went to Saqifah to discuss what was to be done next.

Another group stayed with `Ali at his house waiting on what to do next. The decision at Saqifah was that Abu Bakr was to be given the oath of allegiance as the successor to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. This oath of allegiance was repeated later in which all the scholars were present and gave the oath of allegiance.

The people did now know what to do regarding preparing the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and whether they should undress and bathe him as they do the normal dead or leave the clothes on him.

Those in charge were `Ali, Al-`Abbas, Al-Fadl ibn al-`Abbas, another son of al-`Abbas, Usamah ibn Zaid and Shuqran, a freed slave of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. Allah caused a sleep to fall over them and from the back of the room they could hear a voice telling them to wash him with his clothes on and prepare him in this way.

Once he was prepared and the burial shrouds wrapped around him, there was a dispute over whether to bury him with the Companions or the Masjid. Abu Bakr then quoted a hadith to them where the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said that a prophet should only be buried where he died and nowhere else. It was settled and he was buried in the house where he died.

The bed was put in the ground first and then the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was put on top of it. The men came in first and prayed on him, then the women, then the children, without their being an imam for the funeral prayer like for the rest of humanity. He was buried in the middle of the night of Wednesday. Those that buried him were `Ali, Al-Fadl, another son of Al-`Abbas, and Shuqran.

Our Mother, `A’ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, said, “When the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, died, the Arabs went through apostasy, the Jews and Christians reasserted their influence, the hypocrites manifested themselves and the Muslims became like scattered sheep as their prophet and shepherd had died, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. This remained the case until Allah gathered the people to Abu Bakr.”

Taken from As-Sirat un-Nabawiyyah by Imam Ibn Hisham, vol.4, pp. 222-231

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