Pearl of Wisdom

When the Christians of Najran came to the Prophet (SAWA), their chiefs were al-Ahtam, al-'Aqib and al-Sayyid ...they asked, 'To what do you call us?' He said, 'To bear witness that there is no god but Allah and that I am the Messenger of Allah, and that Jesus was a created servant who ate, drank [water] and relieved himself... The Prophet (SAWA) said, 'Then invoke Allah's curse upon me. If I am telling the truth, the curse will descend upon yourselves and if not, then it will descend upon me.' They said, 'You have spoken fairly.' Then they made an appointment for the challenge. When they returned to their homes, their chiefs told them...'If he comes to invoke curse upon us with his people, we will accept the challenge, because he would not be a prophet, but if he challenges us with his close family, we must not accept, for he would not ris k his own family unless he was truthful. When the morning arrived, they came to the Prophet (SAWA), and he was accompanied by the Commander of the Faithful, Fatima, al-Hasan, and al-Husayn...They got scared and said to the Prophet (SAWA), 'We will give you what you want, so spare us this mutual invocation of curse.' The Prophet (SAWA) made a truce with them that they pay the tax (jizya) and they went back.'

Imam Ja'far ibn Muhammad al-Sadiq [as]
Nur al-Thaqalayn, v. 1, p. 347, no. 157

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Library » Nahj ul Balagha » Sermons » `Abdullah ibn `Abbas says that when Amir al-mu'minin set out for war
`Abdullah ibn `Abbas says that when Amir al-mu'minin set out for war E-mail
Sermon 33 `Abdullah ibn `Abbas says that when Amir al-mu'minin set out for war with the people of Basrah he came to his audience at Dhiqar and saw that he was stitching his shoe. Then Amir al-mu'minin said to me, "What is the price of this shoe?" I said: "It has no value now." He then said, "By Allah, it should have been more dear to me than ruling over you but for the fact that I may establish right and ward off wrong." Then he came out and spoke:

Verily, Allah sent Muhammad (p.b.u.h.a.h.p.) when none among the Arabs read a book or claimed prophethood. He guided the people till he took them to their (correct) position and their salvation. So their spears (i.e. officers) became straight and their conditions settled down.

By Allah, surely I was in their lead till it took shape with its walls. I did not show weakness or cowardice. My existing march is also like that. I shall certainly pierce the wrong till right comes out of its side.

What (cause of conflict) is there between me and the Quraysh? By Allah, I have fought them when they were unbelievers and I shall fight them when they have been misled. I shall be the same for them today as I was for them yesterday.

By Allah, the Quraysh only take revenge against us because Allah has given us (i.e. the Holy Prophet and his progeny) preference over them. So, we have allowed them into our domain, whereupon they have become as the former poet says:

 

    By my life, you continued drinking fresh milk every morning, And (continued) eating fine stoned dates with butter; We have given you the nobility which you did not possess before; And surrounded (protected) you with thoroughbred horses and tawny-coloured spears (strong spears) (1).

 


(1). In fact, the aim of the poet here is to say that the condition of the addressee's life, from the moral and material point of view, had been worse in the past, and that the poet and his tribe have given him the best means of leading their lives. But as the result of this improved condition the addressee has completely lost himself and forgotten his past condition and thinks that he had had this kind of life previously.

Now, Amir al-mu'minin wants to convey the same idea here to the Quraysh as Fatimah (p.b.u.h.) the holy daughter of the Holy Prophet said in her speech on Fadak:

 

    (O' People) ... You were on the brink of the pit of Hell Fire (Qur'an, 3:103). You were as worthless as the mouthful of water. You were minority like the handful greedy and a spark of the hasty. You were as down-trodden as the dust under feet. You drank dirty water. You ate untanned skin. You were abased and condemned. But Allah has rescued you through my father Muhammad (p.b.u.h.a.h.p.). . .

 


 
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