In recent years, beloved Huzoor has delivered Friday Sermons about the the Battle of Badr. That was an epic day in the history of Islam, when the Holy Prophetsa and a small army of companions put their very lives on the line. They defended their faith from an attack that threatened to wipe out both the Muslims – and Islam itself – from the face of the Earth.
Now, Tahir Magazine humbly presents the incredible story of the Battle of Badr.
A Deadly Threat
Abdullah bin Ubayy ibn Salul had received a most dangerous letter. It was written by the people of Mecca and addressed to him, a leader of Medina. The letter said:
“Now that you have admitted our enemy in your home, we swear by God and declare that we, the people of Mecca, will join in an attack on Medina unless you, the people of Medina, agree to turn him out of Medina or give him a joint fight. When we attack Medina, we will put to the sword all able-bodied men and enslave all women.”
The Holy Prophet Muhammadsa prepares to defend Islam
The Holy Prophetsa could not allow the innocent and peaceful Muslims to be wiped out. So he began to prepare for the defence of Medina. He would give people missions to travel from the city and report back on the activities of the Meccans. In this way, he ensured the Meccans could not launch a surprise attack.
One day, the Holy Prophetsa came to know that a large Meccan army was marching towards Medina. So, he raised his own Muslim force and set off to stop the Meccans. The Muslims were fewer in number and their weapons were meagre, but nobody could doubt their bravery when they answered the call of their Prophet:
“We now stand by you, whatever you ask us to do… If we must fight, we will and we will fight to the right of you, to the left of you, in front of you and behind you. True, the enemy wants to get at you. But we assure you that he will not do so, without stepping over our dead bodies.”
It wasn’t only the grown-ups who showed this brave desire to serve Islam. Children came along and tried to join the army. The Holy Prophetsa would send them back, to keep them safe. One boy called Umairra heard youngsters were being sent back, so he hid. However, he must have been found and the Holy Prophetsa ordered him to return. Umairra began to weep. On seeing his emotions, the Holy Prophetsa allowed him to remain with the army.
Arrival at Badr
It so happened that some thirsty Meccan soldiers approached the spring, to ask for water. Some Muslims thought it better not to share. After all, these were the very people that had set out to kill the Muslims and, anyhow, there was only limited water in the spring. But the Holy Prophetsa was so kind and so generous and so merciful that even in these circumstances he instructed the Meccans be allowed to drink.
|The Meccans had marched to Badr, near Medina|
The Muslims knew they faced death and one companion even said: “There is no telling whether I shall live to return.”
The Battle Begins
The battle began with individual combat. Three Meccans advanced. The Holy Prophetsa ordered his uncle Hazrat Hamzahra, his nephew Hazrat Alira and another relative, Hazrat ‘Ubaidahra to meet them.
The battle for the very future of Islam had begun.
Hazrat Hamzahra and Hazrat Alira were soon blessed with victories in their contests, but Hazrat ‘Ubaidahra suffered an injury and later passed away due to his wounds.
Now the Holy Prophetsa instructed his army:
“If the disbelievers launch a sudden attack, repel them with your arrows first. But use your arrows wisely, so that you do not empty your quivers uselessly. Take out your swords, only when the two armies meet.”
“There are some people among the [Meccan] army who have not come to participate in this campaign with pleasure; rather, they have only come along under the pressure of the chieftains… Similarly, there are also such people in this army, who in our time of hardship, dealt with us generously when we were in Mecca. It is our obligation to repay their benevolence. As such, if a Muslim subdues any such individual, he should not cause him any harm.”
A full battle broke out. The Muslims defended bravely, but the powerful Meccan force seemed indestructible and the outcome remained in the balance.
The Muslims in Danger
Picture the scene. A furious battle is raging. The Meccan army is larger and better equiped. And the very future of Islam is at stake.
In these moments, the Holy Prophetsa was continuously praying, weeping deeply. With increasing agony and extreme anguish he begged Allah the Almighty:
“O My Master! If today, this party of Muslims is destroyed in the field of battle, there shall remain none who would worship You on the face of this earth.”
After a long time, the Holy Prophetsa rose from his sajdah prostration. He looked around the bloody battlefield. He took up a handful of sand and pebbles and threw it at the disbelievers, saying: ‘May their faces be ruined!’
Thou threwest not when thou didst throw, but it was Allah Who threw, that He might overthrow the disbelievers and that He might confer on the believers a great favour from Himself. (8.17)
At the exact moment the pebbles flew into the air, a mighty gust of wind suddenly arose. It created a storm of dust, rushing towards the Meccan army. Sand filled the disbeliever’s eyes, mouths and noses. Some of the Muslims even saw visions of angels coming to their help.
Muslim youngsters set a timeless example
The Holy Prophetsa now commanded his followers to launch a sudden attack. The whole army instantly obeyed his command – and the youth were just as passionate to serve Islam as their elders. ‘Abdur-Rahman bin ‘Auf narrates:
“When the war fully commenced, I looked to my right and left, but found two youngsters…to both sides. Upon seeing them, my heart sank, because in such wars, the outcome of battle greatly depends on the companions to the right and left. Only such a person can fight effectively, whose sides are secure.
I was still in this state of mind, when one of the two boys inquired of me in a whisper, as if to keep it secret from the other, ‘O Uncle! Where is that Abū Jahl who would give grief to the Holy Prophetsa in Mecca? I have made an oath with God that I shall either kill him, or die trying.” I had not yet responded when the other also whispered the same inquiry. Upon witnessing their courage, I was stunned, because Abū Jahl was the General of the army, and he was surrounded by veteran warriors. I pointed to him saying, “That is Abū Jahl.”
I had only to make an indication, when both children sprung forward like hawks and cutting through the enemy ranks reached there in an instant. They executed an assault so swiftly, that Abū Jahl and his comrades were left dumbstruck, and Abū Jahl was mixed to dust.”
There had been martyrdoms on the Muslim side; among the fourteen who sacrificed their lives in the Battle of Badr was Hazrat Umairra, the sincere boy who had gained special permission to join the army. What a brave servant of Islam he had proven to be, at such a young age!
Today, by the Grace of Allah Almighty, we live in the UK in a time of peace. We are in a country where we can safely practice our religion and we are not required to risk our lives or defend our religion in battle.