7 years ago
The Migration (Al-Hijra)
The Prophet's migration from his birth-city, Mecca, to Yathrib bears logical evidence of his truth. Yathrib is a city, more than two hundred miles north to Mecca, which has since become world-famous as al-Madinah. Mohammad's tribe in Mecca, Quraysh, did all they could to ridicule Mohammad's call and deject his followers. Mohammad's logical vision to conduct his mission in a better environment started by trying other cities around Mecca. He used the season of pilgrimage of the Arabs to Mecca, place of the God's Holy house or Temple in the valley of Baca[i],
for preaching Islam. The logical belief and simple teachings of Islam attracted men from Yathrib to meet Mohammad. Hearing Muhammad, they recognized him as the Prophet whom the Jewish rabbis, living in Yathrib, waited and described him to them. According to many verses in the Bible[ii], Mohamed was the expected prophet who should come in this time and in this place, but the Jews expected him to be one of them. On their return to Yathrib, the Yathribeans told what they had seen and heard. In the next season of pilgrimage, a deputation of 12 men came from Yathrib purposely to meet the Prophet. Such meeting was held in a place near Mecca, called Al-Aqabah. These people swore allegiance to him in ting the first pact of al-Aqabah. Mohammed expected Yathrib as an optimum place to conduct his mission. In such city, there were endless wars between two powerful Arabic tribes, Aws and Khazraj, living in Yathrib and also between such tribes and the Jewish rabbis living there. It is God's mercy that guided the Yathribeans to grant Mohammad the role of the arbiter, the reformer, the ruler, the leader and trust him, as the promised messenger, to end a history of long lasting fight between them. Mohammad's plan to go to Yathreb started by sending a Muslim of his followers, Mosab Ben Omeir, for teaching the principles of Islam. Soon, there was not a house in Yathrib wherein there was not mention of the messenger of Allah. In the following year, at the time of pilgrimage, seventy-three men and two women from Yathrib came to Maccah to vow allegiance to the Prophet and invite him to their city as a king or a ruler. At al-Aqabah, by night, they swore to defend him as they would defend their own wives and children. It was then that the Hijrah decision or the migration to Yathrib. Such decision, logically selected in time, in conditions, in organization and in places, was kept as a secret between Mohammad and his believers. Mohammad's plan to migrate started by calling his followers in Mecca to immigrate before him to Yathrib to form a new base for Islam and to guarantee, as a leader, their safety before his leave. They began to sell their properties secretly and to leave Yathrib unobtrusively. Quraysh had wind of what was going on. They expected the power of a new Islamic state that Muhammad is going to built in Yathrib. They hated him in their midst, but dreaded what he might become if he escaped from them. It would be better, they considered, to destroy him before his expected leave. The death of his uncle, Abu Talib, had removed his chief protector; but still they had to reckon with the vengeance of his clan upon the clan of the murderer. They cast lot and chose a slayer out of every clan. All these were to attack the Prophet simultaneously and strike him together, as one man. Thus his murder would be blamed on all Quraysh. Mohammad was acknowledged by the night appointed for his murder. Trusting in God, Mohammad decided to leave with his companion, Abu Bakr, in this night. Abo Bakr, as a man of wealth, had bought two riding camels and retained a guide in readiness for the flight. Mohamed gave his cloak to Ali, bidding him lie down on the bed so that anyone looking in night think Muhammad lay there. The slayers were to strike him as he came out of the house, whether in the night or early morning. He knew they would not injure Ali as he was a kid. Then he left the house and, it is said, blindness fell upon the would-be murderers so that he put dust on their heads as he passed by-without their knowing it. Passing such murderers unseen and safe represent evidence of God's Mercy to His true prophet and the strong faith of the prophet.
He went to Abu Bakr's house and called to him, and they two went together to a cavern in the desert hill and hid there for three days till the hue and cry was past. Abu Bakr's son and daughter and his herdsman were bringing them food and tidings after nightfall. Once, a search party came quite near them in their hiding-place, and Abu Bakr was afraid; but the Prophet said:
"Fear not! Allah is with us." The books of Sira state many signs[iii] of God's Mercy and protection that had prevented the assassins from searching in such cavern. Similarly, the success of crossing 200 miles in desert followed by troops of such assassins who wanted promised rewards from Quraysh represent other logical evidence of God's defense.
When the coast was clear, the planned companions formed of Abu Bakr and his herdsman, the riding-camels and the guide started such long planned ride to Yathrib. During traveling for many days of unfrequented paths, the fugitives confronted also the hotness and hunger but the God's mercy supported his messenger to get flowing milk from a sick sheep in a farm of historically marked woman, Om Meabad[iv].
Finally, the team reached a suburb of Yathrib, the people of the city had been going every morning, watching for the Prophet. The travelers arrived in the heat of the day. People of Yathrib received the Prophet in pleasure with songs as was described in a Biblical prophecy for the arrival of the promised prophet.[v]
So, helped by the mercy of God and accompanied by his friend Abu-Bakr , he eluded his assassins and reached the city by a round route on September 24 , 622 . This date became subsequently the first year of the Muslim calendar, popularly referred to as the " Hegira " ( Hijrah ) . It is a significance date in the global and Islamic history, because it heralded the dawn of a new era, the Islamic era and the promised kingdom of God[vi].
We can see in Mohammad's life the truth of his companion's comment: he asked God as if he had no way to manage and manage as if he had no way to God's defense. But his gifted wisdom to conduct logical plans and the God's defense in every act represent the evidence of his truth.