We begin today where we left off last week; Mohammed ﷺ has learned that he is the prophet of the end of times. As the realization starts to settle in, he turns to Lady Khadejah (RA), his beloved wife, and says, “You are the first person I am calling to this faith.”
“I am the first to accept,” replies Khadejah (RA).
“Then our days of rest have left us,” said Prophet Mohammed ﷺ. So begins the dawah, calling to faith. In the beginning, he would preach to his close relatives and those that he trusted. Slowly, Islam started to gain such greats as Abu Bakr, Zaid ibn Harithah and Ali and many others who realized the truth that Prophet Mohammed ﷺ preached. Khadejah (RA) took the task of supporting the house financially completely on her shoulders to give her husband the ability to spread Islam. She would also go to her family members and speak to them about Mohammed’s message.
Whenever Prophet Mohammed ﷺ would get a revelation, Lady Khadejah (RA) was the first to be told about it. She was the first to be taught to make wudu and the first to learn how to pray. She was the first person to pray jama’a (group prayer) with the Prophet ﷺ.
After three years, Allah commanded Prophet Mohammed ﷺ to preach the religion openly. With Islam out in the open, Lady Khadejah (RA) was able to be a stronger force in helping her husband. She used her power and influence to protect him, hiring slaves as bodyguards around the clock. She publicized Islam among the women during the day and worked on people of her own tribe in the evening.
However, the public preaching of Islam brought extremely difficult times for the Muslims. Horror spread through Mecca as Muslims were abused, insulted, cursed and killed. Prophet Mohammed ﷺ was called crazy, a poet, a magician. Through all that, the Muslims did not stand down or waver one bit, and leading them in their stand with Prophet Mohammed ﷺ was Lady Khadejah (RA). She went from being the most popular, most wealthy woman to one who was ridiculed. She heard people slander her husband, and she stood strong. She saw people throw trash at her husband, and she consoled him. When Prophet Mohammed ﷺ grew tired from the aggression, she was his strength. She was there to offer a smile, words of wisdom, companionship, and support. She was Allah’s way of providing comfort to his messenger.
As the prophet ﷺ saw his people being tortured and killed, he called upon those who could to travel to Abyssinia, where King Najjashi would provide safety for them. Abu Lahab and Abu Jahl, the strongest disbeleivers, saw the growth of Islam and saw it gain Omar ibn Al Khattab and Hamza, two of the strongest men in Mecca. They decided to really apply the pressure on these Muslims, as they saw that their barbaric and torturous methods were not working. So they drew up a social, political and economic boycott of the Muslims. Through this boycott, people of Quraish were ordered not to marry from among the Muslims, buy or sell anything to them, accept treaties from them, or show any mercy. In this way they starved them and isolated them from their society.
Because of this treaty, Khadejah (RA) had to stand by helplessly as her two of her daughters were divorced from their husbands, who were sons of Abu Lahab, in the intent of punishment to Prophet Mohammed ﷺ. She already had had to endure the separation of her daughter Zainab, who was among those that sought refuge in Abysinnia.
The Muslims were forced to retreat to a valley owned by Abu Talib, which was a barren desert. Quraysh said to Lady Khadejah (RA), “You are a woman of honor and distinction, you may remain safe and sound in your house.” She replied, “I swear by Allah, I shall never be except where the Muslims are.” At Abu Talib’s valley, the Muslims endured three years of starvation and suffering. They used to eat leaves and grass and the cries of their hungry children could be heard from far away. But they did not waver or lose hope. Lady Khadejah tried with all her might to alleviate the suffering of the Muslims in any way she could. This lady of privelage suffered hunger and thirst along with all the other Muslims but did not complain. The people of Quraysh started to feel ashamed that Lady Khadejah(RA) was struggling and they tried to smuggle food to her, but she just gave it to the children, refusing to eat while other Muslims starved.
The love between her and Prophet Mohammed ﷺ only grew stronger. In times like these the strength of love between two people is tested but nothing could budge the affection between Lady Khadijah(RA) and the prophet. She supported him with all her being and he loved her, praised her, and acknowledged her virtue and strength. They were a team and their love and constant support was vital for the beginning of Islam.
By the time the boycott ended, Lady Khadejah(RA) was 65 years old. The Muslims were finally able to go back to Mecca to their old homes as Islam starts a new page in history.
*The support of Lady Khadejah was vital for the takeoff of Islam. Having a good support system at home helped the Prophet (PBUH) be able to deal with the hardship outside the home.
*We can see here how it was so important for Lady Khadejah to be the strong, independent, business woman that she is. She was able to support the house financially so the prophet Mohammed ﷺ could do dawah and she was able to use her power to protect him and help him. Can you see the message Allah trying to give us Muslim men and women through this aspect of Khadejah’s personality and social status?
*May Allah grant us all with a loving and supporting spouse like the Prophet Mohammed ﷺ was blessed with and may Allah enable us to be good spouses in return.
*There is an important point I would like to make here, and forgive me if I upset anyone with my comments. For those of you who don’t speak Arabic, Jahl (as in Abu Jahl) means ignorance. If you notice, Abu Jahl never became a Muslim, accepted Mohammed ﷺ as the prophet, or showed mercy toward the Muslims. He, and Abu Lahab, were ruthless, abusive, constantly attacking the Muslims without even trying to learn what Islam is all about. What message is Allah sending us here? Let’s fast forward. Do we have any Abu Jahls in our time? Are we constantly being attacked, insulted, abused? Are we dealing with not one, but many Abu Jahls, from the media, to the politics, to at times, the people around us and unfortunately sometimes, fellow Muslims. Here is the difference though. Unlike the Muslims at the Prophet’s ﷺ time, we are so desperate for Abu Jahl to like us, to think we’re normal. We are so desperate that we change our names, we loosen our hijabs, we do haram, just so we can be accepted. We say, see Abu Jahl, we have tattoos, just like you. We want to open nightclubs, just like you. We date and smoke and maybe even drink, just like you. My name is not Mohammed, its Mo. And worst of all, we applaud our fellow Muslims when they represent Islam in this way because we hope that if Abu Jahl sees that we are far from our religion, that we have lowered our standards, that we are willing to compromise our deen and our eman, that we are just like him, maybe, hopefully, Abu Jahl will accept us. Maybe Abu Jahl will see us as normal people. However, Allah gave us the lesson of Abu Jahl during the Prophet’s ﷺ time as an EXAMPLE!! He is showing us that Abu Jahl did not accept the Muslims so what makes you think the Abu Jahls of your time will? Why do you take the ignorant as your standard and try to please them, while neglecting and moving away from what pleases God? Why do you waste your time on the ignorant instead of accepting your religion with pride? Why do you applaud your fellow Muslims who do haram when you know that it is against the religion and against the guidance of the Prophet ﷺ? Imagine if Khadejah, Mohammed ﷺ or any of the companions did as you do, imagine where our religion would be today. Nonexistent! It would not be what it is today if they compromised like us, been apologetic like us, been ashamed like us, lowered their standards like us. But they didn’t, and they have set the example for us to follow. We have not endured even a percentage of what they did, so lets not let their troubles be in vain. Remember that Islam did not spread by Muslims copying other religions and cultures but through our positive Islamic ethics. Remember that while Allah is easy to please, the ignorant will never be pleased with you and you will be just as ignorant as they are trying to please them. We learn how to deal with our adversities by looking at how our ancestors dealt with theirs, just like Allah used to help Prophet Mohammed ﷺ deal with his adversities by teaching him about those of the prophets before him. Technology and the superficial aspects of our lives change but human nature doesn’t. So do not compromise your deen, improve your ethics. Do not loosen your hijab, be proud of your modesty. Do not let others interpret your religion incorrectly, do your own research, “IQRA.” Do not lower your standards because the standards in Islam are those of the highest degree. Read, Learn, Educate- This is the way of Islam.
Read the rest of the series:
Part 1-Early life
Part 2-A Love story, the beginning
Part 3-The Revelation, the love story continues
Part 5-The greatest love story of all time
Abd-Allah, Dr. Umar Faruq. “Famous Women in Islam.” Lecture.
Quṭb, Muḥammad ʻAlī. Women around the Messenger. Riyadh: International Islamic House, 2007. Print.
Webb, Suhaib. Mothers of the Believers : Lives of the Wives of Prophet Muhammad (upon Whom Be Peace). : Awakening Media, Audio CD.
Darussalam. The Honorable Wives of the Prophet, Peace Be upon Him. 1st ed. 2004. Print.
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