When none believed me, Khadijah (R.A) did. She made me a partner in her wealth.”Those are the words of our Holy Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) about his wife the great Muslim lady, Hazrat `Khadija-tul-Kubra’ (R.A).
Khadijah (R.A), married the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) when she was 40 and he was 25. They had six children: two sons, Qasim and Abdullah (also known as Tahir and Tayyib), and four daughters: Zainub, Ruqaiyyah, Umm Kulthum and Fatimah (Radhiyallahu-Anhum-Ajmaeen).
Khadijah (R.A) lived with the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) for 25 years and was his only wife during that time. When the revelations came from Allah and Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) was made the Last Prophet, it was Khadijah (R.A) who accepted the faith and became the first Muslim. She was 55 years old at that time. Her acceptance of Islam greatly helped its spread among the Makkans.
She stood by the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) all the time. In moments of trial and difficulty the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) used to come to her and she consoled and comforted her husband and encouraged him. Khadijah’s (R.A) wealth was used for the cause of Islam. The Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) remained busy in preaching Islam and his devoted and loving wife looked after the children and family affairs.
The Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) and Khadijah (R.A) had many sorrows. they had to bear the death of their sons Qasim and Abdullah (Radhiyallahu-Anhum) in their infancy and in the fifth year of Prophet hood (Hijrah) their daughter Ruqaiyyah (R.A) left them and migrated to Abyssinia (Ethiopia) with her Husband, Hazrat Uthman bin Affan (Radhiyallahu-Anhu). Ruqaiyyah (R.A) left her parents at a very young age and returned after four years; that time was a long and painful separation for her parents, Khadijah (R.A) and Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam).
During the Prophet hood, the Quraish did all they could to stop the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) preaching Islam. Nothing worked. The Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) continued his mission, relying on Allah. Hazrat Khadijah (R.A) was his source of encouragement and comfort. She also had to bear enormous strain and suffering during the boycott at Sha’bi (the valley of) Abu Talib for three years.
The great Muslim lady Khadijah (R.A) passed away on 10th Ramadhan in the tenth year of Hijrah, 620 CE, at the age of 65. Her death was a great loss to the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam). He said:
“I cannot bear the scene, I believe that Allah has kept much good in it.”
He loved Khadijah (R.A) so dearly that after her death he used to remember her often. Hazrat Khadijah’s (R.A) status was such that the Angel Jibraeel (Alayhis-Salaam) used to bring salaam (greetings) for her from Almighty Allah.
Young Muslim Sisters should know how devoted Khadijah (R.A) was to her husband and how much she did for him for the cause of Allah. Any Muslim of today would feel proud to have such a wife. The world could be changed by great Muslim ladies like Hazrat Khadijah (R.A).
She was the daughter of Harith bin Hazan. Her original name was Barrah but she was later renamed Maimoonah by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) . She was first married to Abu Rahim bin Abdul Uzza. According to some reports, she was married twice before she became Ummul Mominin. She had been widowed lately when the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) married her at Saraf, a place lying on his journey to Mecca for ‘Umrah in Zul Qa’dah 7 A.H. He had intended to start living with her when in Mecca after performing ‘Umrah but, as Qureysh did not allow him to enter Mecca, he called her over to him in the same place on his return journey. Many years later she died and was buried exactly at the same place in 51 A. H. (when she was 81).
This is a strange coincidence that at a certain place during one Journey she is married, at the same place on the return journey she starts living with the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and at the very place during another journey she dies and is buried.
Hadhrat Aishah (R.A) says: “Maimoonah was the most pious, and the most mindful of her kith and kin, among the Prophet Mohammad’s (صلى الله عليه وسلم) wives.”
Hadhrat Yazid bin Asam (R.A) says: “She was seen either engaged in Salaat or in domestic work. When she was doing neither, she was busy in Miswak.” She was the last woman to be married by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) . Certain Muhaddithin have, however, mentioned one or two other marriages contracted by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) .
She was the daughter of Hayi, Who was a descendant of Hadhrat Harun (a.s) the brother of Moosa (a.s). She was first married to Salam bin Mishkam and then to Kinallah bin Abi Huqaiq at the time of Khevbar. Kinallah was killed in the battle and she was captured by the Muslims. Hadhrat Dahya Kalbi (Radhiyallaho anha) requested for a maid, and the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) made her over to him. At this, the other Sahabah approached the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and said:
“O, Prophet of Allah! Banu Nazir and Banu Quraizah (the Jewish tribes of Madinah) will feel offended to see the daughter of a Jewish chief working as a maid. We therefore suggest that she may be taken as your own wife.”
The Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) paid a reasonable sum of money to Hadhrat Dahya (r.a) as ransom, and said to Safiyyah: “You are now free; if you like you can go back to your tribe or can be my wife.”
She said: “I longed to be with you while I was a Jew. How can I leave you now, when I am a Muslim?�
This is probably a reference to the fact that she once saw in her dream a portion of the moon falling into her lap. When she mentioned her dream to Kinanah, he smote her face so severely that she developed a mark on her eye. He said: “You seem to be desiring to become the wife of the King of Madinah.”
Her father is also reported to have treated her similarly when she related the same or similar dream to him. She again saw (in her dream) the sun lying on her breast. When she mentioned this to her husband, he remarked:
“You seem to be wishing to become the Queen of Madinah.”
She says: “I was seventeen when I was married to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) . She came to live with the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) when he was camping at the first stage from Khaiber. Next morning, he said to the Sahabah: “Let everybody bring whatever he has got to eat.”
They brought their own dates, cheese, butter, etc. A long leather sheet was spread and all sat round it to share the food among themselves. This was the Walimah for the marriage.
She died in Ramadan, 50 A. H., when she was about 60.
Hadrath Umme Habibah (Radhiyallaho anha): She was the daughter of Abu Sufyan, and was first married to Ubaidullah bin Jahsh in Mecca. The couple embraced Islam, and then emigrated to Abyssinia due to persecution by the Qureysh. One night she saw her husband (in a dream) in the most ugly and obnoxious form. The next day she came to know that he had turned Christian. She, however, remained a Muslim and was therefore separated from him.
She was now all alone in exile. But Allah soon recompensed her loss. The Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) sent her an offer of marriage through the King Negus, who sent a woman named Abrahah to her with the message. She was so happy with the good news that she made over the bracelets and other jewellery that she was wearing to the woman in gratification. King Negus represented the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) Nikah ceremony, and gave her 400 dinars as her portion and many other things in dowry from himself. He also gave a feast and dinars as gift to all those who were present in the ceremony. The Negus then dispatched her to Madinah, with her dowry and other gifts such as perfume, etc. This marriage took place in 7 A. H. (Her father was not a Muslim then).
She most probably died in 44 A.H.
Hadhrat Juwairiah (Radhiyallaho anha) was the daughter of Harith, the chief of Banu Mustaliq and was married to Musafe’ bin Safwan.
She was one of the large number of captives who fell into Muslim hands after the battle of Muraisee’, and she was given to Hadhrat Thabit bin Qais (R.A). He offered to release her for 360 Dirhams. She came to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and said: “O, Prophet of Allah! I am the daughter of Harith who is the chief of the, and you know my story. The ransom demanded by Hadhrat Thabit (R.A) is too much for me. I have come to seek your help in the matter.”
The Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) agreed to pay her ransom, set her free, and offered to take her as his wife. She was very glad to accept this offer. She was married to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) in 5 A.H. and as a consequence of this marriage, the prisoners of Banu Mustaliq (Juwairiah’s tribe), about a hundred families, were all set free by the Muslims. “The tribe which so honoured by the Prophet Mohammad’s (صلى الله عليه وسلم) relationship, they said, should not remain in slavery.”
Such were the noble expediences in all the marriages of the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم). Hadhrat Juwairiah (R.A) was pretty, her face was very attractive. Three days before her falling captive in the battle, she had seen in her dream the moon coming out from Madinah and falling into her lap. She says: “When I was captured, I began to hope that my dream would come true.”
She was 20 at the time of her marriage with the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم). She died in Rabi-ul-Awwal, 50 A.H., in Madinah at the age of 65.
She was the Prophet Mohammad’s (صلى الله عليه وسلم) cousin. She was first given in marriage by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) to his adopted son Hadhrat Zaid bin Harithah (Radhiyallaho anho). When Hadhrat Zaid (Radhiyallaho anho) divorced her, she was married to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) by command of Allah, as mentioned in Surah Al Ahzab. This took place in 5 A.H., at that time she was 35. She was therefore born 17 years before Nubuwwat. She was always proud of the fact that, the other wives while all the other wives were given in marriage to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) by their guardians, it was Allah Himself Who did this for her.
When Hadhrat Zaid (Radhiyallaho anho) divorced her and she had completed her Iddat, the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) sent the proposal to her. She said: “I cannot say anything until I have consulted my Allah.” She performed Wudhu, said two rakaat of Salaat, and prayed to Allah: “O, Allah! Thy Prophet proposes to marry me. If I am fit for the honor, then give me in his marriage.” Allah answered her prayer by revealing the following verse to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) :
“So when Zaid had performed the necessary formality (of divorce) from her, we gave her unto thee in marriage, so that (henceforth) there may be no sin for believers in respect of the wives of their adopted sons, when the latter have performed the necessary formality (of release) from them. The Commandment of Allah must be fulfilled.” (XXXIII:37)
When she received the good news about this revelation, she prostrated before Allah in thanksgiving. Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) arranged a big feast of Walimah for this marriage. A goat was slaughtered and mutton-curry with bread was served to the guests. People came in groups, and were served till all of them were fed.
Hadhrat Zainab (Radhiyallaho anha) had a very large heart for spending in the way of Allah. She earned by working with her hands and spent all “her earnings in charity. It was about her that the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) prophesied:
“My wife with long hands will be the first to meet me after my death.” The wives took this to mean the physical length of arms and began to measure their hands with a stick. The hands of Hadhrat Saudah (Radhiyallaho anha) came out to be the longest by measurement. But when Hadhrat Zainab (Radhiyallaho anha) died first, the meaning of the metaphor used by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) dawned upon them. She fasted very often. She died in 20 and ‘Umar (Radhiyallaho anho) led the funeral service. She fifty at the time of her death.
Hadhrat Umme Salamah was the daughter of Hadhrat Abu Ummayyah (Radhiyallaho anhu). She was first married to her cousin Hadhrat bin Abdul Asad known as Abu Salamah (Radhiyallaho anhu). The couple embraced Islam in the very beginning and emigrated to Abyssinia, due to the persecutions of Qureysh. A son was born to them in exile, who was named Salamah. After returning from Abyssinia, the family emigrated to Madinah. Hadhrat Umme Salamah’s (Radhiyallaho anha) story about her journey to Madinah, has been already given in the early part of the chapter. After reaching Madinah, Hadhrat Umme Salmah (Rad laho anha) got another son ‘Umar and two daughters Durrah and Zainab (Radhiyallaho anhum).
Hadhrat Abu Salamah (Radhiyallaho anho) was the eleventh man to embrace Islam. He participated in the battle of Badr as well as in Uhud. He got a severe wound in Uhud, which did not heal for a long time. He was sent by the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) in an expedition in Safar, 4 A. H. When he returned from the expedition, the old wound again started giving trouble and at last he died of the same on 8th Jamadil-Akhir, 4 A. H. Hadhrat Umme Salamah (Radi-allaho anha) was pregnant at the time. Zainab was born to her after the death of her husband. After Umme Salamah had completed her Iddat (waiting period), Hadhrat Abu Bakr (Radlaho anho) proposed to marry her, but she declined.
Later, the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) offered to marry her. She said: “O, Prophet of Allah! I have quite a few children with me and I am very sensitive by nature. Moreover, a people are in Mecca, and their permission for getting remarried is necessary.”
The Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) said: “Allah will look after your children and your sensitiveness will vanish in due course. None of people will dislike the proposed marriage”.
Hadhrat Umme Salamah then asked her (eldest) son Hadhrat Salamah (Radhiyallaho anho) to serve as her guardian and give her in marriage to the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) She was married in the end of Shawwal, 4 A. H. She says: “I had heard from the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) that a person struck with a calamity should recite this prayer:
“O, Allah! Recompense me for this affliction by giving me something better than what I have lost: then Allah would accept his prayer.” I had been reciting this prayer since the death of Hadhrat Abu Salamah (Radhiyallaho anho), but I could not imagine a husband better than he, till Allah arranged my marriage with the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) .” Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho anha) says:
“Umme Salamah (Radhiyallaho anha) was famous for her beauty. Once I contrived to see her. I found her much more beautiful than I had heard. I mentioned this to Hafsah who said. “In my opinion, she is not as beautiful as people say.” She was the last of the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) wives to die. It was in 59 or 62 A. H. She was 84 at the time of her death, and as such she was born 9 years before Nubuwwat.
As already been said, the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) married Hadhrat Umme Salamah after the death of Hadhrat Zainab Khuzaimah (Radhiyallaho anha). She therefore lived in Hadhrat Zainab’s (Radhiyallaho anha) house. She found a had-mill, a kettle and some barley in an earthen jar, lying in the house. Hadhrat Umme Salamah milled some barley and after putting some fat cooked a preparation, which she served to the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) on the very first day of her marriage with him.
Hadhrat Zainab (Radhiyallaho anha) was the next to be married to the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) . There are divergent reports about her previous husbands. According to one report she was first married to Hadhrat Abdullah bin Jahsh (Radhiyallaho anho) who was killed in Uhud, as we have already seen in his story in chapter VII. According to another report, she was first married to Tufail ibnul al Harith and when divorced by him was remarried to his brother Ubaidah ibnul Harith, who was killed in Badr.
The Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) married her in Ramadan, 3 A.H. She lived with the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) for eight months only, as she died in Rabi-ul-Akhir, 4 A.H. Hadhrat Zainab and Hadhrat Khadijah (Radhiyallaho anha) are the two wives of the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) who died during his life time. All the other wives lived on after him and died later. Hadhrat Zainab (Radhiyallaho anha) spent very liberally on the poor, and was Ummul Masakin’ (mother of the poor) even before Islam.
Hafsah was the daughter of ‘Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallaho anho) who was born in Makkah five years before the Nubuwwat. She was first married to Hadhrat Khunais bin Huzaifah (Radhiyallaho anho), who was one of the very early Muslims. He first emigrated to Abyssinia and then to Madinah. He participated in Badr, and was fatally wounded in Badr (or in Uhud) and died of the wound in the year l or 2 A. H. Hadhrat Hafsah (Radhiyallaho anha) had also emigrated to Madinah with her husband. When her husband died, Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallaho anho) went to Hadhrat Abu Bakr (Radhiyallaho anho) and said:
“I want to give Hafsah in marriage to you.” Hadhrat Abu Bakr (Radhiyallaho anho) kept quiet and said nothing. Meanwhile Ruqayyah (Radhiyallaho anha) the daughter of the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) and the wife of Hadhrat Usman (Radhiyallaho anho) died.
Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallaho anha) went to Hadhrat Usman (Radhiyallaho anho) and offered Hadhrat Hafsah (Radhiyallaho anha’s) hand to him. He declined by saying, “I have no mind to marry for the present.” Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallaho anho) complained of this to the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam).
The Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) said: “I tell you of a husband for Hafsah better than Usman and of a wife for Usman better than Hafsah.”
He then took Hadhrat Hafsah (Radhiyallaho anha) as (next wife, and gave his own daughter Hadhrat Umme Kulsum (Radhiyallaho anha) in marriage to Hadhrat Usman (Radhiyallaho anho). Hadhrat Abu Bakr (Radhiyallaho anho) later said to Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallaho anho):
“When you offered Hafsah’s hand to me, I kept quiet as the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) had expressed to me his intention of marrying her. I could neither accept your offer nor disclose the Prophet Mohammad’s (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) secret to you. I, therefore, kept quiet. If the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) had changed his mind, I would have gladly married her.”
Hadhrat Umar (Radhiyallaho anho) says: “Abu Bakr’s silence over the offer was in fact more shocking to me than ‘Usman’s rejection.”
Hadhrat Hafsah (Radhiyallaho anha) was a very pious woman, and very much devoted to Salaat. She would often fast during the day and spend the night in prayers. Once the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) , for some reason, was displeased with Hafsah and even pronounced the first divorce to her. Hadhrat Umar (Radhlyallaho anho) was naturally very much shocked over this. Jibraeel Alayhis came to the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) and said: Allah wants you to take Hafsah back, as she is fasting often and spending her nights in Salaat, and also Allah wants it for Hadhrat Umar’s (Radhiyallaho anho) sake.
The Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) therefore took her back.
Hadhrat Hafsah (Radhiyallaho anha) died in Jamadil oola, 45 AH, at the age of 63.
After the demise of Hazrat Khadijah , the Holy Prophet Muhammad was much worried and grief stricken. He had to look after his child and attend to the household chores, adding considerably to the agony of the death of his loving wife. This also caused hindrance in his Prophetic mission. Seeing him worried and distressed, Hazrat Khawlah bint Hakeem , wife of Hazrat Uthman bin Maz’oon , suggested to the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) that he badly needed a companion to help him in running his house and looking after his children, and proposed the name of Hazrat Sawdah who was an elderly widow.
Hazrat Sawdah and her late husband Hazrat Sakran, were early converts to Islam, and also had the honour of having migrated to Abyssinia. Therefore, they were very much close and dear to the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam). On return from Abyssinia, Hazrat Sakran (Radhiyallahu-Anhu) passed away. Hazrat Sawdah (Radhiyallahu-Anha) was now left a forlorn widow with a baby.
On receipt of the suggestion, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) considered it carefully. The mission of Prophethood now demanded much time, but due to him being preoccupied in household affairs, he could not devote enough time to his heavenly mission. He therefore accepted the proposal also taking into consideration that an early convert to Islam may be helped and honoured, and approved Hazrat Khawlah (Radhiyallahu-Anha) to negotiate for his marriage with Hazrat Sawdah (Radhiyallahu-Anha).
Proposal to Sawdah RA
Khawlah (Radhiyallahu-Anha ) went straight to Hazrat Zum’aa bin Qais , the father of Hazrat Sawdah (Radhiyallahu-Anhuma), and after exchanging compliments conveyed the message of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam). Hazrat Zum’aa (Radhiyallahu-Anhu) was much pleased and remarked that: “Hazrat Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) comes from a very respectable family and is a perfect gentleman and that any father would feel proud of marrying his daughter to him.” He further suggested to Hazrat Khawlah that Hazrat Sawdah should also be consulted in this connection. Hazrat Khawlah then went to Hazrat Sawdah and conveyed the message of the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) and added that Hazrat Sawdah had already obtained the approval of her father for the marriage. Hazrat Sawdah [Radhiyallahu-Anha ] expressed her consent and happiness in the marriage. The marriage was settled and Hazrat Sawdah was married with Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam ). The Nikah Khutbah (sermon) was read by Hazrat Sawdah’s (Radhiyallahu-Anha) father himself. Hazrat Sawdah was 55 at the time of this marriage.
By this marriage the house of the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) was once more aglow with warmth and happiness. Hazrat Fatimah and Hazrat Umme Kulsoom (Radhiyallahu-Anhuma ) were the two orphaned daughters of Prophet[s.a.w.] Hazrat Sawdah (Radhiyallahu-Anha) used to love these two daughters very affectionately, so much so that nobody could even doubt that she was not their real mother. Hazrat Sawdah (Radhiyallahu-Anha) had no children from the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam ) However, from her first husband (Hazrat Sakran ) she had a son named Hazrat Abdur-Rahmaan (Radhiyallahu-Anhu). He fell a martyr fighting in the battle of Jalula.
Narrations of Sawdah RA
Five traditions are said to have been narrated by Hazrat Sawdah (Radhiyallahu-Anha). Out of these one finds place in Bukhari Hazrat Sawdah (Radhiyallahu-Anha) was generous, hospitable, kind and affectionate. Hazrat Umar (Radhiyallahu-Anhu) once sent her a purse full of Dirhams, she at once distributed those coins. She was distinguished in self-sacrifice. She was ready to forego her rights and privileges for the sake of others. She was also jovial by nature. Hazrat Sawdah used to please the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) and her friends through healthy jokes and jest.