Monday, November 7, 2011

The Hijrah : Natural environment of Makkah and Madinah

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The Hijrah

Makkah is a barren and hilly tract. The influence of this city had a profound effect on its people. The dwellers were generally ill-tempered and unable to think deeply and deliberately over anything of great importance. Yathrib (Madinah), on the other hand, was a fertile land and produced various kinds of vegetables and fruits. The climate was not so extreme as that of Makkah. People were tender-hearted, considerate and thoughtful. So, Islam could find a more suitable ground at Madinah than at Makkah in its early period of expansion. This expedited Hijrah all the more.

Natural environment of Makkah and Madinah
Psychological factor:

It is a common human psychology everywhere in the world in every age that prophets are not adored in their own countries. So was the case with the prophet of Islam. He was despised and hated by his own people in Makkah but he was earnestly requested by the Madinities to go to their city.

Priest class and Qurayshite aristocracy :

The priest class and the Qurayshite aristocracy stood as the greatest bar in the way of progress of Islam. They thought that Islam’ssuccess meant their own doom and destruction. So, they opposed Islam vehemently from its very birth. But in Madinah there was no priest class as in Makkah nor any tribe of religious aristocracy like the Quraysh. So, it was easier to preach Islam, there even with a better success than in Makkah.

Invitation of the Aws and the Khazraj: Relation between Muhammad and Madinah:

There were also political causes for the migration. They city had long been divested by internal war. The Banu Aws and Banu Khazraj were at feud with each other. The sanguinary conflict of both which had been fought between the two had weakened and humiliated one of the clans without materially strengthening the other. Thus the city was kept in constant disorder and unrest. In the circumstances, the ever conflicting Aws and Khazraj were seeking a strong personality to mediate between them and establish peace in the land. The politics of Makkah and the history of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) were well-known to the Yathribities and hence they invited him to their land. Moreover, occasional inter-marriages took place between the holy cities. Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) had the blood of Khazraj in the veins through the marriage of Hashim with a lady of Yarith and a favourable interest was at least secured among the members of that tribe.

The Jews were then living at Yathrib. They were informed of the coming of a Prophet as a zealous supports of their scriptures and as Muhammad (pbuh) claimed to be so, they were eager to receive him in their midst. Thus the ground had been prepared for the Prophet long before he left for the city.

Aggressive attitude of the Makkans:

The death of Abu Talib and Khadijah made Muhammad (pbuh) helpless in Makkah. Abu Talib was the tower of defense of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and during his life-time the Quraysh, though they occasionally put him to difficulties, had not ventured to threaten him to death. The sudden death of Abu Talib offered the Makkans an opportunity to perpetrate inhuman atrocities on the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). This aggressive attitude of the Makkans corsituted an important factor for the migration.

Thus the continued hostility of the Quraysh ultimately compelled the prophet to look elsewhere for the propagation of his faith. He ordered his followers to migrate to Yathribe. The Muslims began to sell their property and to migrate in small groups. When the Quraysh got wind of this, they became furious and planed to murder the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was warned of this danger in time. He with Abu Bakr and Ali had been waiting at Makkah for the divine command. When danger reached the climax and order of God came, he decided to migrate to Yathrib.

Muhammad (pbuh) in a cave

It was the result of dep deliberation that this migration was undertaken. He slipped away in the dusk of evening with Abu Bakr placing Ali on his bed and took shelter in the Thawr cave, not far from Makkah. When the people entrusted with the murder of the Prophet found Ali on his bed they were astonished and at once stared in pursuit of the fugitives; but they failed to find them out. When the prophet Muhammad (pbuh) camel to know that the search had ceased, he along with Abu Bakr started for Madinah. By forced march they covered the distance between the two cities in half the usual time and reached the village of Quba, four miles to the south of Madinah on Monday, the 29th September, 622. They satyed there for about two weeks. During this period, the Prophet laid the foundation in the Quran with the name of the ‘Mosque of godly fear’.

In the morning of Friday, the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) mounted his favorite camel, al-Kasywa, taking Abu Bakr behind him and proceeded towards Madinah. He halted at a place of prayer in the valley of the Banu Salim and there he performed his first Friday service with about a hundred Muslims. This place is marked by a building called the Masjid al-Juma or the ‘Friday Mosque’ in memory of the event. On this occasion the Prophet delivered a sermon chiefly on religious matter. From this time Friday was set apart for the weekly celebration of public prayer. After the Friday prayer the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) resumed his march towards Madinah and entered the city on the same day in the midst of cheers and joys. This is called the Hijrah or Migration, and the Muslim era, the Hijrah, dates from this event.

Related Post :
   => Emigration to Abyssinia 
   => Muhammad (pbuh) and Khadija
   => Journey to Syria 
   => Childhood of Muhammad (pbuh)
   => Timeline of Muhammad (pbuh) 
   => Revelation of Holy Quran 
   => Boycott ofthe Prophet by the Quraish 
   => Death of Khadija and Abu Talib  
   => People of Taif rejected him 
   => Pledge of al-Aqabah



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