Saturday 1st of October 2022
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The story of the Migration of the Prophet’s Companions to Ethiopia

In the early years of the Prophetic mission, the muslims were in minority. Quraish and other opposing tribes created a lot of hardships for the believers. The muslims were not ready in number to combat with the infidels.

In order to save Islam and the muslim's lives and to prepare a base outside the Hijaz area, the Prophet(s.a.w) ordered them to migrate to Ethiopia. He told them that there was a well-wishing governor there who was just in his actions and that he would give them the necessary protections.

Eleven men and four women migrated to Ethiopia, going by a ship. This migration that took place in the month of Rajab on the fifth year of the Prophetic mission is called the “First Migration.”

A little later, Ja’far Ibn Abi Talib and some other hard-workers went to Ethiopia and laid the foundation of an Islamic society there, consisting of eighty two men, some women and children.

The issue of the migration of the group of believers was very hard for God’s enemies to digest. They thought within a short period of time there would be a large population of muslims in the safe land of Ethiopia. In order to resolve this hot problem, they selected two active, and intelligent and treacherous young men called Amr Ibn As and Ammarat Ibn Walid to go to emigrants.

These two got drunk aboard the ship and quarreled with each other; but somehow they managed to reach the land of Ethiopia. By Sending valuable and expensive gifts to the court of Najashi, they got the permission to meet with this governor.

Amr As told Najashi: We are the envoys of the Meccan nobility. There are a number of silly and light-headed young men who have opposed our gods and have created a lot of disturbances among people. Now they have taken advantage of the quiet and peace in your land and have taken shelter here. We are worried that they might disturb people here, as well. You had better submit them to us so that we may take them to their native land. Having said this, they offered their gifts.

Najashi said: Before hearing what the representatives of this group have got to say, I will not say a word. Since this is a religious discussion, some clergy should attend the meeting, too.

The next day, an important session was held in which the Najashi’s men, some Christian scholars, Ja’far Ibn Abi Talib, as the representative of the muslims and the Quraishi representatives were present. Upon hearing the speech offered by the Quraishi representatives, Najashi asked Ja’far to express his views.

After paying his respect, Ja’far said: please ask them if we are run-away slaves.

Amr: No, you are free - men;

Ja’far: Please ask them if we owe them anything;

Amr: No;

Ja’far: Then, what do you want of us. You have hurt us tremendously. We have left your homeland because it is a land of injustice.

Then, Ja’far addressed Najashi, telling him: we were a bunch of ignorant. We used to worship idols; we used to feed on corpse; we used to do all sorts of nasty things; we used to disconnect with our relatives; we used to mistreat our neighbors; our strong people used to destroy the weaker ones.

But then the compassionate Allah sent us a Prophet. He has ordered us not to accept any associate for Allah and not to engage in prostitution, drinking, tyranny, injustice and gambling. He has ordered us to pray, to pay alms, to do good and to help our needy relatives.

Then Najashi relied: Jesus Christ(a.s) too was commissioned for this purpose. Then he asked Ja’far if he could recite some of the communications revealed to the Prophet(s.a.w). Ja’far gave a positive reply, and started reciting the Surah of Maryam (Qur’an 19).

The right and elegant selection of the verses that Ja’far made in order to recite had a tremendous impact on the Christian listeners, so much so that they wept. In these sacred verses Mary was exonerated of any blame. Then, excited, Najashi shouted: I swear to God I see the truth in these verses.

At this time Amr wanted to ask for these muslims to be taken home, but was severely struck by Najashi, who said: Be silent. I will punish you if you blame this group any more. Then he ordered his men to return the gifts to Amr, and ordered their expulsion. Then, he told Ja’far and his companions to feel at ease while they were in Ethiopia.

In fact, the Prophet’s genuine companions were exposed to all sorts of tortures including the financial hardships; they had to leave their homeland for the sake of Islam, but in the words of the Holy Qur’an and in accordance with Imam Sajjad(a.s) they used their love towards the Prophet(s.a.w) and sacrificed themselves for Islam and engaged in a trade in which bankruptcy did not occur, rather its profits were everlasting.

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَتْلُونَ كِتَابَ اللَّهِ وَأَقَامُوا الصَّلَاةَ وَأَنْفَقُوا مِمَّا رَزَقْنَاهُمْ سِرًّا وَعَلَانِيَةً يَرْجُونَ تِجَارَةً لَنْ تَبُورَ لِيُوَفِّيَهُمْ أُجُورَهُمْ وَيَزِيدَهُمْ مِنْ فَضْلِهِ إِنَّهُ غَفُورٌ شَكُورٌ  [1]

“Surely they who recite the Book of Allah and keep up prayer and spend out of what We have given them secretly and openly, hope for a gain which will not perish. That He may pay them back fully their rewards and give them more out of His grace: Surely He is forgiving, multiplier of rewards.”

اللَّهُمَّ وَ أَوْصِلْ إِلَى التَّابِعِينَ لَهُمْ بِإِحْسَانٍ الَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ: {رَبَّنَا اغْفِرْ لَنَا وَ لِإِخْوَانِنَا الَّذِينَ سَبَقُونَا بِالْإِيمَانِ} خَيْرَ جَزَآئِكَ الَّذِينَ قَصَدُوا سَمْتَهُم وَ تَحَرَّوْا وِجْهَتَهُمْ وَ مَضَوْا عَلَى شَاكِلَتِهِمْ لَمْ يَثْنِهِمْ رَيْبٌ فِي بَصِيرَتِهِمْ وَ لَمْ يَخْتَلِجْهُمْ شَكٌّ فِي قَفْوِ آثَارِهِمْ وَ اَلْاِئْتِمَام بِهِدَايَةِ مَنَارِهِمْ مُكَانِفِينَ وَ مُوَازِرِينَ لَهُمْ يَدِينُونَ بِدِينِهِمْ وَ يَهْتَدُونَ بِهَدْيِهِمْ يَتَّفِقُونَ عَلَيْهِمْ وَ لَا يَتَّهِمُونَهُمْ فِيمَا أَدَّوَآ إِلَيْهِمْ

In this section of the supplication the issue is the Prophet’s real and genuine companions, the most distinguished one of whom is Imam Ali(a.s). Imam Zainul Abidin(a.s) comments on their traits and attributes:

O God! Provide with the best of rewards that man and woman who wholeheartedly followed the Prophet’s genuine companions (who took faith and obedience to Your presence), who at the time of their prayer and supplication beg You: O God forgive us and our religious brethren who took precedence over us in their acceptance of the faith and honorable Islam.

O God! Provide with You best kind of rewards for those genuine followers who sincerely followed the Prophet’s true disciples, who adopted their ways of life, who did not doubt the validity and significance of the work of their fore-runners, who helped their leaders, who are equal with the Prophet’s true companions in prayers and worshipping Allah, and who trust them when they report from the Prophet(a.s).

اللَّهُمَّ وَصَلِّ عَلَى التَّابِعِينَ مِنْ يَوْمِنَا هَذَا إِلَى يَوْمِ الدِّينِ وَ عَلَى أَزْوَاجِهِمْ وَ عَلَى ذُرِّيَّاتِهِمْ وَ عَلَى مَنْ أَطَاعَكَ مِنْهُمْ صَلَاةً تَعْصِمُهُمْ بِهَا مِنْ مَعْصِيَتِكَ وَ تَفْسَحُ لَهُمْ فِي رِيَاضِ جَنَّتِكَ وَ تَمْنَعُهُمْ بِهَا مِنْ كَيْدِ الشَّيْطَانِ وَ تُعِينُهُمْ بِهَا عَلَى مَا اسْتَعَانُوكَ عَلَيْهِ مِنْ بِرٍّ وَ تَقِيهمْ طَوَارِقَ اللَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ إِلَّا طَارِقًا يَطْرُقُ بِخَيْرٍ وَ تَبْعَثُهُمْ بِهَا عَلَى اعْتِقَادِ حُسْنِ الرَّجَاءِ لَكَ وَ الطَّمَعِ فِيمَا عِنْدَكَ وَ تَرْكِ التُّهْمَةِ فِيمَا تَحْوِيهِ أَيْدِي الْعِبَادِ

O God! Send Your blessings, from today upto the Doom’s Day, to the followers of the Prophet’s companions and to their wives and children. Send them such blessings that will protect them against any act of disobedience of which they might get exposed. Provide them with larger spaces in Your paradise. Please let them stay away from Shaitan’s seductions and temptations. Help them in any good work that they desire to perform and protect them against the daily events.

Send them, O God, such blessings due to which they will trust in Your Benevolence and will not be greedy at what you possess and stay away from leveling accusations of injustice against Your allocating assets onto Your servants.

Indeed when one’s heart became the base for faith and belief in Doom’s Day and a center of God’s rays, and when one’s self became equipped with good mannerisms, and when one’s body organs, such as eyes, ears, tongues, hands stomachs and lusts, performed good deeds, then God’s special mercy would encircle him, would protect him against disobedience towards God, and would provide him with a place in the paradise, and would be guarded against the internal and external Shaitan, would confirm him in all his good deeds, would protect him against all the hazards, would enable him to maintain his trust in Him and would make him eager to attain His Blessings and finally God may help him against any doubt concerning God’s distribution of sustenance among His servants.

When a God’s servant is located at a position of faith, submission, resigning himself to the will of God, and love, he will become aware of the fact that the whole world has got a system, a construction filled with flowers, he will understand that everything is orderly and the Seeing, Knowing, Generous, and Compassionate God is not to blame for anything.

The Gnostics tell us that there are four kinds of maturity:

a) Islamic maturity,

b) The faith maturity,

c) The conviction maturity,

d) The revelation maturity.

By the Islamic maturity is meant the believer’s submission to God’s commands;

By the faith maturity is meant the acceptance of Islam through sound reasoning.

By the conviction maturity is meant to be sure of God’s Blessings.

By the revelation maturity is meant to be free of everything and to connect with God.

فَكَشَفْنَا عَنْكَ غِطَاءَكَ فَبَصَرُكَ الْيَوْمَ حَدِيدٌ  [2]

“But now We have removed from you your veil, so your sight today is sharp.

The Islamic maturity is revealed by the following:

الْمُسْلِمُ مَنْ سَلِمَ الْمُسْلِمُونَ مِنْ لِسانِهِ وَ يَدِهِ

“A true muslim is the one who will not disturb others through his tongue or actions.”

And we will see the faith maturity in the following:

إِنَّمَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ الَّذِينَ إِذَا ذُكِرَ اللَّهُ وَجِلَتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَإِذَا تُلِيَتْ عَلَيْهِمْ آياتُهُ زَادَتْهُمْ إِيمَانًا وَعَلَى رَبِّهِمْ يَتَوَكَّلُونَ... أُوْلَئِكَ هُمْ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ حَقًّا  [3]

“Those only are believers whose hearts become full of fear when Allah is mentioned, and when His communications are recited to them they increase them in faith, and in their Lord do they trust…..These are the believers in truth.”

And we will observe the conviction maturity in the following:

لَوْ كُشِفَ الْغِطاءُ مَا ازْدَدْتُ يَقِيناً

“If the curtains go apart, nothing will be added to my conviction.”

And we will see the revelation maturity in the following expression:

مُعْتِقٌ الْعِبادِ وَمُقَطِّعُ التَّعَلُّقاتِ

The most advanced form of the revelation maturity is freedom and by freedom and liberty is meant being liberated from any possession and complete submission to God’s will.[4]

لِتَرُدَّهُمْ إِلَى الرَّغْبَةِ إِلَيْكَ وَ الرَّهْبَةِ مِنْكَ وَ تُزَهِّدَهُمْ فِي سَعَةِ الْعَاجِلِ وتُحَبِّبَ إِلَيْهِمُ الْعَمَلَ لِلْاجِلِ وَ الِاسْتِعْدَادَ لِمَا بَعْدَ الْمَوْتِ وَ تُهَوِّنَ عَلَيْهِمْ كُلَّ كَرْبٍ يَحِلُّ بِهِمْ يَوْمَ خُرُوجِ الْأَنْفُسِ مِنْ أَبْدَانِهَا وَ تُعَافِيَهُمْ مِمَّا تَقَعُ بِهِ الْفِتْنَةُ مِنْ مَحْذُورَاتِهَا وَ كَبَّةِ النَّارِ وَ طُولِ الْخُلُودِ فِيهَا وَ تُصَيِّرَهُمْ إِلَى أَمْنٍ مِنْ مَقِيلِ الْمُتَّقِينَ

O God! Send Your Blessings to the followers of the Prophets, so that because of Your Blessings they will become found of You and their hearts will become filled with fear of You, and they will become reluctant to pay heed to the worldly affairs and they will become ready for the world Hereafter and for the Doom’s Day, and they will be free from the fire. Please send them such a blessing through which they will reside in a comfortable place that belongs to the pious ones.

In this section of the invocation, Imam Zainul Abidin(a.s) has asked God for the following:

A) Willingness for truth for God;

B) Fear of the God’s Grandeur;

C) Piety in this world;

D) Talent for the world Hereafter.

[1] Quran 35:29-30.

[2] Quran 50:22.

[3] Quran 8:2-4.

[4] Kashf Al-Hagayeq, P 125.

source : The Book: Diar Aashiqan by prof, Hussain Ansarian
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