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Her loyalty is to Allah (SWT) alone

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Her loyalty is to Allah (SWT) alone

Post by Ithar Ghada Faied on Tue Apr 27, 2010 6:39 pm

One of the results of the Muslim woman's pride in her Islamic identity is that she will never be loyal to anything or anyone other than Allah (SWT), not even her husband or her father, who are among the closest people to her. We see the epitome of this loyalty (wala') in the life of the Prophet's wife Umm Habibah (May Allah be pleased with her), Ramlah bint Abi Sufyan, the chief of Makkah and leader of the mushrikin. She was married to the Prophet's cousin (son of his paternal aunt) `Ubaydullah ibn Jahsh al-Asadi, the brother of the Prophet's wife Zaynab. Her husband `Ubaydullah embraced Islam, and she entered Islam with him, whilst her father Abu Sufyan was still a kafir. She and her husband migrated to Abyssinia with the first Muslims who went there, and left her father in Makkah, boiling with rage because his daughter had embraced Islam and there was no way he could get at her.

But the life of this patient Muslim woman was not free from problems. Sadly, her husband `Ubaydullah left Islam and became a Christian, joining the religion of the Abyssinians. He tried to make her join him in his apostasy, but she refused and remained steadfast in her faith. She had given birth to her daughter Habibah, and was now known as Umm Habibah. She withdraw from people, and felt as if she would die of grief and sorrow because of all the disasters that had befallen her. She and her daughter were alone in a strange land, and all the ties between her and her father and husband had been cut. The father of her small daughter was now a Christian, and the child's grandfather at that time was a mushrik and an enemy of Islam who had declared all-out war on the Prophet in whom she believed and the religion that she followed.

Nothing could save her from this distress and grief except the care of the Prophet (PBUH), who was losing sleep over the believers who had migrated, concerned for their welfare and checking on them. He sent word to the Negus to request him to arrange his marriage to Umm Habibah, the daughter of Abu Sufyan, one of the immigrants to his country, as is explained in the books of sirah and history. Thus Umm Habibah, the daughter of Abu Sufyan, became one of the "Mothers of the Believers."

Time passed, and as the conquest of Makkah drew closer, the threat to Quraysh, who had broken the treaty of al-Hudaybiyah, became ever more apparent. Their leaders met and realized that Muhammad (PBUH) would never keep quiet about their betrayal or accept the humiliation they had inflicted on him. So they agreed to send and envoy to Madinah, to negotiate a renewal and extension of the treaty with Muhammad (PBUH). The man chosen for this task was Abu Sufyan ibn Harb.

Abu Sufyan came to Madinah, and was nervous about meeting Muhammad (PBUH). Then he remembered that he had a daughter in the Prophet's household, so he sneaked into her house and asked her to help him achieve what he had come for.

Umm Habibah (May Allah be pleased with her) was surprised to see him in her house, as she had not seen him since she had left for Abyssinia. She stood up, filled with confusion, not knowing what to do or say.

Abu Sufyan realised that his daughter was overwhelmed with the shock of his sudden arrival, so he asked for her permission to sit down, and went over to sit on the bed. He was stunned when his daughter Ramlah rushed to grab the mattress and roll it up. He said, "O my daughter, I do not understand. Is this mattress not good enough for me or am I not good enough for it?" She said, "It belongs to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH), and you are a mushrik, so I do not want you to sit on it."

Ramlah bint Abi Sufyan affirmed her loyalty (wala') to Allah (SWT). She had no regrets about her worthless husband, who had sold his religion for this world. She remained steadfast in her faith, bearing the pain of grief and loneliness in a strange land, where she was most in need of a husband to protect her and take care of her daughter. Allah (SWT), the Munificent Bestower, compensated her with the best that any woman could have hoped for at that time, and made her the wife of the Prophet (PBUH), and so her status was raised to that of one of the "Mothers of the Believers."

The shock of seeing her father so suddenly after many years did not make her forget her loyalty to Allah (SWT) and His Messenger (PBUH). She pulled the Prophet's mattress away from her father because he was a kafir, and she did not want to let him contaminate it by sitting on it. This is the attitude of a Muslim woman who is proud of her religion: her soul is filled with faith and there is no room for tribalism or loyalty to any other than Allah (SWT) and His religion.

Throughout history, Muslim women pride in their Islamic identity gave them the strength and determination to resist temptations and threats, and protected them from being overwhelmed by the forces of kufr and falsehood, no matter how powerful these were. The Muslim women souls were filled with the unquenchable fire of faith, as we see in the steadfastness of Pharaoh's wife, who challenged the entire Pharaonic world with all its temptations and pleasures, caring little about the punishments heaped upon her by her husband because of her faith, and repeating her prayer:

( O my Lord! Build for me, in nearness to You, a mansion in the Garden, and save me from Pharaoh and his doings, and save me from those that do wrong.) (Qur'an 66:11)

Seeking the pleasure of Allah and striving to make His word supreme on earth come above any other goals or ambitions. The true Muslim woman never forgets this truth, and as time passes her pride in her Islamic identity, her devotion to this unique, divinely-ordained way of life, and her loyalty to Allah (SWT) go from strength to strength.
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Ithar Ghada Faied
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