Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Sumayyah Bint Khubbat The First Female Martyr

Three brothers set out from Yemen to go to Mekkah. They heard about this city and wanted to experience its culture and to partake of it various social activities. One was named Yasir and the other two were named Harith and Malik. The later two left to return home to Yemen after some time, but Yasir liked living there so much that he decided to stay on permanently. According to the custom of the time he got the sponsorship and support of Abu Huthaifah bin Abdullah Makhzoomi, and became his companion and partner. As they go to know each other better, they took a liking to each other. Abu huthaifah had a very intelligent and sensible slave girl in his house, Sumaayyah. In due course of time she got married to Yasir.

It was a happy marriage and soon they had a son whom they names ‘Ammar. Abu Huthaifah was very kind, loving and generous man, and he liberated the family from bondage, but he continued to keep good terms with them and very often helped them with cash as well. Yasir had two more sons, whom he named Abdullah and Hareeth. The latter was murdered before the advent of Islam, and with this tragedy it seemed ill fortune started to haunt the family.

Sumayyah bint Khabat (RA) was one of the first seven people to be enlightened by Islam and swear allegiance to the Prophet (pbuh). She is among the foremost of the greatest women companion. Islam is unique in the sense that a persons value does not depend on colour, race, language sex or nationality. The norms are purity of heart and goodwill towards all. As Allah says “Verily the most honourable of you with allah is that (believer) who is most pious”. (Qur'an 49:13)

Thus a person who wishes for his fellow human beings what he wishes for himself, who is kind to his fellow human beings for the sake of Allah (SWT), is the one who fulfills the conditions of the test set by Him.

The seven people who first accepted Islam were the following:

Abu Bakkar Siddique, Ali bin Talib, Khadijah, Zaid bin Harith, Sumayyah bint Khabat, ‘Ammar bin Yasir, Bilal bin Abi Rabiah ( not set in order).

The Quraish of Mekkah could not harm the Prophet (
pbuh) because of the power and position of his uncle Abu Talib. Abu Bakkar Siddique was also a very powerful man because of the wealth of his tribe and his own personal influence. But the common muslim whether man or woman was not spared any imaginable torture or torment.

Sumayyah bint Khabat (RA), her husband and her son ‘Ammar were very often the targets for the cruelty of the Quraish. On one occasion as the Prophet (
pbuh) was passing by the market place he saw all three members of the family being put through the worst form of torture possible. But the Prophet (pbuh) was so helpless that there was no way he could rescue them. He could only console them and said, “Be patient O family of Yasir! For your final destination is Paradise”
Uthman (RA) also narrated that the Prophet (pbuh) used to say these words to comfort the family. Once ‘Ammer managed to escape and reach the Prophet (
pbuh). He then asked when this persecution of the innocent Muslims would end, and when they would be able to breathe peacefully. He said things were going beyond all limits. The Prophet (pbuh) then comforted him with a prayer to Allah (SWT) to protect and save the family of Yasir from the hell fire.

Abu Jahl gave Sumayyah bint Khubbat the worst kind of punishment, but she did not waver even for a second and remained as steady as a rock. He tried to pressure, cajole with and threaten her to recant, but she bluntly refused. He could not accept the fact that she could resist him so stubbornly and in out of rage he thrust his spear into her. This proved to be a fatal blow, and she died. Thus Sumayyah bint Khubbat had the distinction of being the first woman martyr of Islam. This incident took place seven years before the Hijrah. Then her husband also fell victim to the torture of the Quraish and he also died. After the martyrdom of both the parents, ‘Ammar took a special place in the affections of the Prophet (pbuh). He used to address him lovingly as ibn Sumayyah. The Prophet (
pbuh) often spoke of the family of Yasir in the highest terms of praise.

Abdullah bin Mas’ood (RA) says the Prophet (
pbuh) once said that when dissensions and disputes appeared among the people Ibn Sumayyah would always stand by the right and just.

This family sacrificed their lives, all in order to nourish the truth and also to earn rewards for the hereafter. It is about people like these that Allah says:
“Verily, Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their properties for (the price) that theirs shall be the paradise. They fight in Allahs cause so they kill (others) and are killed. It is promise in truth which is binding on him in the Taurat and the Injeel and the Qur'an. And who is truer to his covenant than Allah? Then rejoice in the bargain that you have concluded. Hat is the supreme success.” (Qur'an 9:111).

No comments:

Post a Comment