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The Prophet’s General Amnesty

The Prophet’s General Amnesty

Although Quraysh and other infidels did not stop hostile attitudes towards Muslims since the advent of Islam as they plotted all sorts of disagreements, pressure, aggression and wrongdoing; and although the Holy Prophet, being in full command, could have taken revenge, he declared a general amnesty,[1] saying, “I am repeating the statement of my brother, (Prophet) Joseph: There shall be no proof against you this day, Allah may forgive you, and He is the most Merciful of the merciful. (the Holy Qur'¡n 12:92) Go, you are free now.[2]

Having surrendered with humiliation and expecting a severe revenge by the Holy Prophet, the unbelievers of Quraysh were highly moved by this great pardon of the Holy Prophet. Next to the Kaaba, he addressed people, saying,

“God has consecrated Mecca from the very beginning of creation. This place shall remain holy and sacred until the Resurrection Day. No Muslim is allowed to cause bloodshed on this land nor is he or she allowed to cut a tree from this place. No one is allowed to do a wrong thing to it now or from now on. Let those who are present tell those who are absent…[3]

Upon the conquest of Mecca, the Holy Prophet convened a contract with Meccan women with the following stipulations:

“Do not associate aught with Allah, do not steal, do not commit fornication, do not kill your children, and do not bring a calumny which you have forged of yourselves and do not disobey the Holy Prophet.[4]

Some well-known figures, who later gained high positions, accepted Islam during the conquest of Mecca. Among them were Ab£-Sufy¡n and his son Mu`¡wiyah.

Due to the hard living conditions of people, God ascribes a moral superiority to Muslims prior to the conquest of Mecca:

And what reason do you have that you should not spend in Allah’s way? And Allah’s is the inheritance of the heavens and the earth; not alike among you are those who spent before the victory and fought and those who did not: they are more exalted in rank than those who spent and fought afterwards, and Allah has promised good to all; and Allah is aware of what you do.

The Outcomes of the conquest of Mecca

Mecca was the center of plotting conspiracies against Islam. For this reason, its collapse was the start of a great movement in the history of Islam. This event put an end to idolatry. The different Arab tribes were waiting for the conquest of Mecca and the conversion of Quraysh to Islam. When Mecca collapsed and Quraysh accepted Islam, the representatives of different Arab tribes came to the Holy Prophet accepting Islam.[5] Except for two tribes, namely Haw¡zin and Thaq¢f, all other tribes accepted Islam.[6] Among these tribes that accepted Islam were Qushayr ibn Ka`b[7], B¡hilah,[8] Tha`labiyyah,[9] ¯ud¡',[10] Ban£- Asad[11], Baliy,[12] `Udhrah,[13] Thum¡lah[14] and °udd¡n[15] all of whom came to meet the Holy Prophet, announcing their acceptance of Islam. After a war between Haw¡zin and ±¡’if that took place after the conquest of Mecca, the representatives of the strong tribe of Thaq¢f who were equal to Quraysh in military strength came to see the Holy Prophet and put forward some pre-conditions for their conversion to Islam. Although the Holy Prophet rejected their preconditions, they accepted Islam unconditionally.[16]

[1] The number is recorded to have been between eight and ten. (Ibn Hush¡m, al-S¢rah al-Nabawiyyah 4:51-53; al-W¡qid¢, al-Magh¡z¢ 2:825; Ibn Sa`d, Al-±abaq¡t al-Kubr¡ 2:136.) However, some of them were pardoned by the Holy Prophet.

[2] °alab¢, al-S¢rah al-°alabiyyah 3:49; Zayn¢ Da¦l¡n, al-S¢rah al-Nabawiyyah 2:48.

[3] Ibn Hush¡m, op cit, 4:58; Ibn W¡¤i¦, T¡r¢kh al-Ya`q£b¢ 2:50; al-W¡qid¢, op cit, 2:844, with some alterations of words.

[4] Sayyid Mu¦ammad °usayn ±ab¡§ab¡’¢, al-M¢z¡n f¢ Tafs¢r al-Qur’¡n 19:246. This contract was convened after the revelation of the following holy verses:

O Prophet! When believing Women come to you giving you a pledge that they will not associate aught with Allah, and will not steal, and will not commit Fornication, and will not kill their children, nor commit a calumny which they have forged of themselves, and will not disobey you in what is good, accept their pledge, and ask forgiveness of them from Allah; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (60:11)

Because the content of this treaty was the same as that of the first `Aqabah, it is sometimes called bay`at al-nis¡' (the pledge of women).

[5] Al-Nuwayr¢, Nih¡yat al-Irab 3:11.

[6] Al-S¢rah al-°alabiyyah 3:61.

[7] Ibn Sa`d, Al-±abaq¡t al-Kubr¡ 1:303.

[8] Ibn Sa`d, op cit, pp. 307.

[9] Op cit, pp. 248; al-Nuwayr¢, op cit, pp. 37.

[10] Ibn Sa`d, op cit, pp. 326.

[11] Ibn Sa`d, op cit, pp. 292; al-Nuwayr¢, op cit, pp. 38.

[12] Ibn Sa`d, op cit, pp. 330; al-Nuwayr¢, op cit, pp. 89.

[13] Ibn Sa`d, op cit, pp. 331; al-Nuwayr¢, op cit, pp. 83.

[14] Ibn Sa`d, op cit, pp. 352; al-Nuwayr¢, op cit, pp. 103.

[15] Ibn Sa`d, op cit.

[16] al-W¡qid¢, al-Magh¡z¢ 1:966.

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