Allah Almighty states in the Holy Quran:
وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّکُمْ بِشَیۡءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوۡفِ وَالْجُوۡعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الۡاَمۡوٰلِ وَالۡاَنۡفُسِ وَالثَّمَرٰتِ ؕ وَبَشِّرِ الصّٰبِرِیۡنَ﴿۱۵۵﴾ۙ
“And We shall definitely put you to test with something of fear and hunger and with some loss of wealth and lives and fruits; and give glad tidings to the patient.”
(Al-Baqarah 2, Verse 155)
وَعَنْ أبِيْ عَبْدِ اللهِ خَبَّابِ بْنِ الْأَرَتِّ – رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهٗ – قَالَ: شَكَوْنَا إِلٰى رَسُوْلِ اللهِ – صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ – وَهُوَ مُتَوَسِّدٌ بُرْدَةً لَهُ فِيْ ظِلِّ الْكَعْبَةِ، فَقُلْنَا: أَلاَ تَسْتَنْصِرُ لَنَا ألاَ تَدْعُوْ لَنَا فَقَالَ: «قَدْ كَانَ مَنْ قَبْلَكُمْ يُؤْخَذُ الرَّجُلُ فَيُحْفَرُ لَهُ فِيْ الْأرْضِ فَيُجْعَلُ فِيْهَا، ثُمَّ يُؤْتٰى بِالْمِنْشَارِ فَيُوْضَعُ عَلٰى رَأسِهِ فَيُجْعَلُ نِصْفَيْنِ، وَيُمْشَطُ بِأمْشَاطِ الْحَدِيْدِ مَا دُوْنَ لَحْمِهٖ وَعَظْمِهِ، مَا يَصُدُّهُ ذٰلِكَ عَنْ دِيْنِهِ، وَاللهِ لَيُتِمَّنَّ الله هَذَا الْأَمْرَ حَتَّى يَسِيْرَ الرَّاكِبُ مِنْ صَنْعَاءَ إِلٰى حَضْرَمَوْتَ لاَ يَخَافُ إلاَّ اللهَ وَالذِّئْبُ عَلَى غَنَمِهِ، وَلٰكِنَّكُمْ تَسْتَعْجِلُوْنَ».
Khabbab bin Al-Aratt – RadhiAllahu Anhu – reported: We complained to the Messenger of Allah – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – while he was lying in the shade of the Ka’bah, having made a pillow of his cloak. We submitted: “Do you not supplicate for our help (over the opponents)?”. He replied, “Among those people before you, a man would be seized and held in a pit dug for him in the ground and he would be sawed into two halves from his head, and his flesh torn away from his bones with an iron comb; but, in spite of this, he would not wean away from his Iman. By Allah, Allah will bring this matter to its consummation until a rider will travel from San’a to Hadramout fearing none except Allah, and nor will he fear the wolf for his sheep, but you are in too much of a hurry”.
Sabr of Sayyidah Asiyah – may Allah be pleased with her – against her husband, Pharaoh’s oppression, her steadfastness on Iman and its Reward from Allah
It is mentioned that the wife of Pharaoh, namely Sayyidah Asiyah – may Allah be pleased with her – had kept her acceptance of Iman a secret. However, when Pharaoh came to know about this, he commanded her to return to his religion. She refused to listen to him. When Pharaoh saw her reaction, he became extremely angry and ordered that she be punished using different methods. Finally, she was nailed to a stake. Despite this, she remained steadfast in her faith. As a matter of fact, she declared, “Even though, you may have captured by body, but my heart is in the Divine Protection of Allah Almighty. Even if you tore my body to pieces, still too, I would only increase in Iman.”
One day Sayyiduna Moosa – peace be upon him – passed by and she asked him, “O Prophet of Allah! Please inform me. Is my Creator pleased with me or not?”
Sayyiduna Moosa – peace be upon him – replied, “O Asiyah! in fact the Angels of the Heavens await your arrival and Allah Almighty has also displayed His Divine Pleasure in front of them as well. Therefore, you should ask for whatever you wish.”
She then made Du’a in the Divine Court of Allah Almighty, “Oh my Lord! Please establish a house for me in Jannah and save me from the oppression of Pharaoh and his people.”
Sayyiduna Salman Farsi – may Allah be pleased with him – narrates that Pharaoh used to punish her by leaving her in the hot burning sun. When Pharaoh used to go away, the Angels used to cover her with their wings, and she used to also see her house in Jannah while she was in this world.
Sayyiduna Hasan – may Allah be pleased with him – narrates that, “Allah Almighty saved her and has given her a great status in Jannah and she is able to go anywhere in Jannah and eat and drink anything.”
(Mukaashifatul Quloob p. 90)
Woman of Paradise:
وَعَنْ عَطَاءِ بْنِ أبِيْ رَبَاحٍ، قَالَ: قَالَ لِي ابنُ عَبَّاسٍ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُمَا: ألَا أُرِيْكَ اِمْرَأةً مِنْ أَهْلِ الجَنَّة، فَقُلْتُ: بَلٰى، قَالَ: هذِهِ الْمَرْأةُ السَّوْدَاءُ أَتَتِ النَّبِيَّ – صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ – فَقَالَتْ: إنِّي أُصْرَعُ ، وَإِنِّي أتَكَشَّفُ، فَادْعُ اللهَ تَعَالٰى لِيْ. قَالَ: «إنْ شِئْتِ صَبَرْتِ وَلَكِ الْجَنَّةُ، وَإنْ شِئْتِ دَعَوْتُ اللهَ تَعَالٰى أَنْ يُّعَافِيْكِ» فَقَالَتْ: أَصْبِرُ، فَقَالَتْ: إنِّي أتَكَشَّفُ فَادْعُ اللهَ أَنْ لَّا أَتَكَشَّفَ، فَدَعَا لَهَا.
Sayyiduna ‘Ata’ bin Abi Rabah reported: Sayyiduna Ibn ‘Abbas – may Allah be pleased with them – asked him whether he would like to see a woman who is amongst the residents of Paradise. When he replied that he certainly would, he said, “This black woman, who came to the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – and said, ‘I suffer from epilepsy and my body gets exposed during fits, so make Du’a to Allah for me.’ He replied: ‘If you choose to endure it patiently you would be rewarded with Jannah, or if you wish, I shall supplicate to Allah to cure you?’ She said, ‘I shall endure it.’ Then she added: ‘But my body gets exposed, so pray to Allah that it may not happen.’ He then made Du’a for her”.
This pious woman’s name was either Su’airah or Suqairah. She used to style the hair of Umm al-Mu’mineen Sayyidah Khadeejah – RadhiAllahu Anha.
(Mirqat al-Mafateeh Hadeeth No. 1577(
Although in the knowledge of Sayyiduna RassolAllah – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – she would still be a woman of Paradise even if she did not have this illness, for she was a believer, and a Sahabiyah as well but he inculcated the teaching of Sabr and endurance on calamities so she could achieve a lofty abode in Paradise.
This Hadeeth teaches us that sometimes to leave an illness, without a medical treatment or Du’a for its cure, is done to seek virtues by making Sabr on it. It cannot be labelled as suicide, especially when one is convinced that it is a test from Allah Almighty.
Sayyiduna Ibrahim – peace be upon him – did not make Du’a to be saved when he was being thrown into the fire nor did Imam Husain – may Allah be pleased with him – in the plains of Karbala, otherwise under normal circumstances, both medicine as well as Du’a are Sunnah.
The Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – often made Du’a and Sayyiduna Abu Bakr – RadhiAllahu Anhu – took medicine as well during his fatal illness.
(Mir’aat al-Manajeeh Vol. 2, p. 427)
Du’as for Those who Stoned
وَعَن ْأبِيْ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَانِ عَبْدِ اللهِ بْنِ مَسْعُوْدٍ – رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهٗ – قَالَ: كَأَنِّي أنْظُرُ إِلٰى رَسُوْلِ اللهِ – صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ – يَحْكِيْ نَبِيًّا مِّنَ الْأَنْبِيَاءِ، صَلَوَاتُ اللهِ وَسَلامُهٗ عَلَيْهِمْ، ضَرَبَهُ قَوْمُهٗ فَأدْمَوْهُ، وَهُوَ يَمْسَحُ الدَّمَ عَنْ وَجْهِهٖ، يَقُوْلُ: «اَللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِقَوْمِيْ، فَإِنَّهُمْ لَا يَعْلَمُوْنَ».
Sayyiduna Abdullah ibn Mas’ood– may Allah be pleased with him – reported: I can still recall as if I am seeing the Messenger of Allah – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – resembling one of the Prophets (peace be upon them) whose people scourged him and shed his blood. As he wiped blood from his face, he said: “O Allah! Forgive my people, for they certainly do not know”.
Imam Nawawi – may Allah be pleased with him – writes in its commentary in his Sharh Muslim as follows:
It teaches us that the said Prophet (peace be upon him) was very merciful, tolerant, enduring and forgiving towards his nation. He made Du’a for their guidance.
(Sharh Muslim, Kitab al-Jihad wal-Siyar)
Imam Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani – may Allah be pleased with him – writes in Fat’h al-Baari as follows:
This Prophet was perhaps Sayyiduna Nooh – peace be upon him. He suffered at the hands of his nation as they tormented him. He made Du’a for them upon recovery with these words, “O Allah, forgive my people, for they do not know me.”
(Fat’h al-Baari under Hadeeth No. 3477)
Mulla ‘Ali Qari – may Allah be pleased with him – writes in his Mirqat al-Mafateeh as follows:
That Prophet (peace be upon him) made Du’a for his nation, “O Allah, forgive my people.” It means that O Allah, do not punish them in the world nor destroy their generation (nothing more than that), otherwise it is a common knowledge that making Du’a of forgiveness for the disbelievers and forgiving their kufr and shirk is impermissible by consensus (ijma’).
(Mirqat al-Mafateeh under Hadeeth No. 5313)
What Transpired When the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – Graced Taif with His Blessed Feet
When the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – undertook the journey to propagate Islam in Taif along with his slave Sayyiduna Zaid ibn Haritha – RadhiAllahu Anhu. Many a wealthy people resided in Taaif. The family of ‘Amr, was considered to be the chief amongst their tribes. They were three brothers:
The Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – visited all three of them and invited them towards Islam. All three of them did not accept Islam but had a lot of insolent and indecent things to utter. They did not stop there, and went as far as, infuriating the barbaric goons of Taif to ill-treat the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam. Hence, this group of goons attacked him from all sides and began to stone the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam. His blessed feet were soaked in blood and his socks and shoes were filled with blood. Whenever the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – sat down due to excruciating pain of his wounds, these barbaric people would mercilessly grab his arms and stand him up. As he would begin to walk, they would throw a storm of stones at him, ridicule and laugh at him, clap at him and say vulgar words.
Sayyiduna Zaid Ibn Haritha – RadhiAllahu Anhu – would throw himself against the stones that were raining down on the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – and shielded him in this manner. He was covered in bloodbath.
(Sharh al-Mawahib Vol. 2, p. 50, 51)
After being heavily injured bearing these wounds, he entered an orchard of grapes. It was the orchard of ‘Utabah ibn Rabee’ah, a famous infidel of Makkah. When ‘Utabah ibn Rabee’ah and his brother Shaibah ibn Rabee’ah saw the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – in this condition, then despite being disbelievers, they gave the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – shelter in their orchard. They sent a bunch of grapes for him via their Christian slave ‘Addas. The Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – took the bunch in his hand by reciting Bismillah, so the ‘Addas said in surprise, “People here do not utter this Kalimah.” The Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – asked him, “Where do you belong to?” He replied, “I belonged to the city of Nainawa.” He – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – said, “It’s the city of Sayyiduna Yunus ibn Mata – peace be upon him. Like me, he was also a Messenger of Allah.” Hearing this, Sayyiduna ‘Addas – may Allah be pleased with him – began to kiss his hands and feet and embraced Islam by reciting Kalimah without any delay.
(Sharh al-Mawahib Vol. 2, p. 54)
After this journey, Sayyidah ‘Ayesha – may Allah be pleased with her – asked the Holy Prophet – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam, “Ya RasoolAllah, was there any other difficult time you have undergone more severe compared to the battle of Uhad?” He replied, “Yes, O ‘Ayesha. That day was even more severe than the day of Uhad to me, when I had invited one of the kings of Taif Abd Yalyul towards Islam. He rejected and disgraced the call of Islam and the people of Taif stormed me with stones. I kept on walking full of sorrow with my head down until I reached the placed called “Qarn al-Tha’alib” and only then did I get some peace. When I raised my head to look up, I saw there was a cloud shading on me. Sayyiduna Jibreel – appeared from within and informed me, “Allah Almighty is aware of the state of your nation and had appointed the angel of mountains at your service. He will obey your commands. Hence, the angel of mountains made Salam and said, “O Muhammad (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam), Allah Almighty has heard the utterance of your nation and now I have been appointed at your service. Command as you wish, and I will obey your orders. I will turn these two mountains over them, so that they are crushed and perished if you allow me?” The Holy Prophet, Mercy unto the mankind – SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam – replied, “I hope that Allah Almighty will create such obedient servants from within their future generations who will only worship Allah and will not commit polytheism.”
(Sharh al-Mawahib Vol. 2, p. 51)