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Saturday, May 1, 2010

MIRACLES - ISLAMIC PERSPECTIVE IN BRIEF-PART 9


From the Layman's Desk:7 - Miracles, Islamic Perspective in Brief: Part 9
continued....

In the Name of Allah, Most Beneficent, Most Merciful.

Those slain in Allah's Path are alive:
In addition to the Karamaat of Awliya-Allah that have been mentioned in the Holy Qur’an, ‘Mutwatir’ (recurrent) accounts have come down to us by truthful and reliable narrators of the prophetic traditions, Islamic literature and eye-witnesses about the bodies of the martyrs who sacrificed their life in the way of Allah. Their bodies did not decompose and the colour of the skin did not change. Their bodies still bled and when positions of their hands went back to their original position if it were changed. Musk of smell emanated from graves. The bodies were growing beards too, and were not devoured by animals or birds and remained in tact despite remaining in the desert and being exposed to the harsh climatic conditions for years.

Allah says in the Holy Qur’an: “And say not of those who are slain in the way of Allah: ‘They are dead’. Nay, they are living though you perceive it not.” (2:154)

This is further emphasized to wipe out any doubt about their “living”, by the fact of their being provided for: “Think not of those slain in Allah’s way as dead. Nay, they live, finding their sustenance from their Lord. They rejoice in the bounty provided by Allah” (3:169-170).The martyrs in the cause of Truth are not dead. They are alive in a much beautiful and joyous life than that on this material earth. The general idea of decomposition of the dead bodies do not apply to the Martyrs and other notable exceptions that are above the rank of the Martyrs generally, namely, the Prophets, the Truthful or the Awliya-Allah whose isthmus life is stronger than that of the Martyrs. Thus they are also alive in body and soul. Allah categorically states: “you perceive it not” (2:154) which means that we are unable to comprehend the life in Barzakh (lit. “Partition between the material life on earth and the Day of Resurrection” or the world of grave) where every person has a special kind of life receiving punishment for sins or enjoying rewards of good deeds.

In fact we noted before that Allah states Surah Nisa, verse 69 of the Holy Qur’an that whosoever obeys Allah and His Messenger will be in the company of those whom Allah has shown favour, namely, prophets, the truthful, the martyrs and the Saliheen. Remember, this companionship is not of Paradise alone but rather it begins in the Barzakh itself. According to ibn Qayyim the companionship is established in this ‘Dunya’ and is resumed in the Barzakh and in the Hereafter. Therefore, it is impossible that while the Martyrs remain alive and receive sustenance from their Lord, the prophets (Ambiya), who are of the highest rank and much nearer to Allah, should be deprived of it. Similarly, the rank of Awliya-Allah too is higher than the general category of the martyrs.  Imam Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani (Reh.) states in his monumental commentary of Sahih al-Bukhari, Fath al-Bari: "When life of the martyrs is proven from the text of the Qur’an, then this is also proven from a analogical point of view. And the Prophets are superior then the martyrs" (Fath al-Bari, Volume 006: Page No. 379).  Also, Qadi Shawkawni writes: "In the Qur'an it is mentioned that martyrs are alive and food is provided for them.  The Prophets and righteous people are a lot higher in status than them so what will be their place?  It has been proven through Ahadith that Prophets are alive in their graves.  Both Imam at-Tirmidhi and Imam al-Bayhaqi have said that these are authentic Ahadith" (Nayl al-Awtar, Volume 003, Page No. 82).No doubt, Allah has stated: Every soul must taste of death (Qu’ran 21:35. But that’s momentarily. After the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wassallam) had assumed the veil of departure from this material world, Hazrat Abu Bakr ® while kissing his cheek said: You have tasted the death which God had decreed: a second death will never overtake you.

Insha Allah, we shall discuss about this when we begin a new subject sometimes in the future. For the moment, suffice it to say that Prophetic traditions as well as the annotator of the Tahawi Belief mentioned that: “Allah orders the earth not to decompose the Prophets’ bodies and that the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wassallam) is alive in the grave has been proven beyond doubt by the Sunni Shaykhs and Righteous Ulema. According to Mulla Ali Qari (d.1014 c.e.) since the bodies of the prophets have been made ‘Haraam’ to the earth, there is no difference in the conditions pertaining to life and death of the prophets. He further says that this means that ‘Salawaat’ (benedictions) are presented to both soul and body of the the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wassallam). Regarding “nourishment” he clarifies that it can mean both material and spiritual one, which cannot be seen or felt by the ordinary senses. .

The Martyrs of Uhud:

The Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wassallam) said: “When your brethren were martyred at Uhud, Allah placed their souls inside green birds which drink from the rivers of Paradise, eat of its fruits and seek shelter in gold-lamps that are suspended in the shade of the ‘Arsh’ (Throne). When they saw how beautiful their food, drink and the abode was, they pleaded, ‘Who will tell our brothers about us, that we are alive in Paradise and being amply provided for, so that they will not turn away from Jihad or abandon the battlefields. Allah ta’la said: ‘I shall tell them!’ The verse was then sent down:  “Think not of those slain in Allah’s way as dead. Nay, they live, finding their sustenance from their Lord. They rejoice in the bounty provided by Allah” (3:169-170)In his series (Story of the End) Dr. Tariq Suwaidan mentioned that Sheikh Muhammad As-Sawwaf, one of the scholars who were chosen to rebury the martyrs of Uhud after the flood that uncovered the bodies, told him that their bodies did not change, decompose, or rot even after 1400 years from their death. Sheikh Muhammad As-Sawwaf said that: “Among the bodies was that of Hamza (may Allah be pleased with him). He was big and his nose and ears were cut. His abdomen was ripped apart and he put his hand on it. When we took his hand up, blood flew down as if he died one hour ago.


The Messenger of Allâh [pbuh] supervised the martyrs’ burial and said: "I bear witness that anyone who is wounded in the way of Allâh, Allâh will resurrect him with his wound bleeding a liquid which is blood-like in colour but musk-like in scent." [Ibn Hisham 2/98]


Similar instance had also occurred as we noted before that when the bodies of the martyrs of Uhud were being relocated forty years after their burial, the foot of Hamzah bin 'Abd al-Mutalli b ® was scratched in the process of being moved, and it started gushing blood. ['al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah'; 4/43]

The above incident is also evident from a hadith shareef in Sahih Muslim where it was mentioned that Muslim historians had reported, when Mu’awiyah ruled, he was planning for a water channel to be built in Madinah. In order for this development to be achieved, the channel had to be routed through the middle of the Madinah cemetery. Therefore, he ordered the remains of the dead in the graves to be transferred to another place. In the midst of the dismantling and relocation process, the people found that the corpses were still in their original states. When one of the shovels they used accidentally hit and slashed the leg of Hamzah bin Abdul Mutalib, blood was seen flowing from the cut. Whereas, that occurrence had already surpassed the Battle of Uhud by 50 years.

At the same time, in Sahih Al-Bukhari, it was mentioned that ‘Amr bin Jamuh and Abdullah bin ‘Amir, both from the Ansar, had been buried in one grave during the Battle of Uhud, and when once the area was hit by a big flood due to very heavy rains, their grave was washed away by the current. The people of Madinah were forced to take the grave apart in order to relocate it to a safer place and the moment their grave was taken apart, the people discovered that the conditions of their corpses did not change at all, as though they had only died the day before. In actual fact, when they were digging up the grave for the relocation, it had already been 46 years since the corpses were buried in the grave, ie. since the Battle of Uhud.

It so happened that one of them was found placing his hand over the wound of which he had died but he was buried in the same position. When the grave had given way, people noticed that his body was still in the same position with the hand over the wound. When some of them tried to reposition the hand, the hand came back to the original position over the wound.

Jabir bin Abdullah ® whose father had attained martyrdom in the Battle of Uhud, wanted to dig out the remains of his father Abdillah for relocation to another place. He also noticed that the body of his martyred father was in the state as if it had been buried days before.

'Umar bin Abdul Khattab:
In an article submitted by one “Mujahid” to a website, we are informed that “In one genuine incident, from the people of Madinah it was related that during the rule of Khalifah Al-Walid bin Abdul Malik, one shocking incident occurred unexpectedly when one of the walls retaining the grave of Rasulullah SAW caved in. A lot of people were shocked in this incident when they saw a pair of legs popping out from one of the areas in the burial site. They were worried if they were the legs of Rasulullah SAW. Sa’id bin Al-Musaiyib immediately came forward and narrated a hadith which mentioned that the bodies of the Prophets were not let by Allah SWT to remain in the grave for more than 40 days since the day of the burial, they were raised by Allah SWT thereafter. Then, Salim bin Abdillah bin Umar bin Khattab arrived and informed the crowd that the legs belonged to his grandfather, Umar bin Al-Khattab RA.”

Amazing incident about Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah and Hazifa Yamani (R):

Thirty kilometers east of Baghdad there is the Salman Park where there are the tombs of Hazrat Abdullah bin Jabir, Hazifa Yamani, and Salman Farsi, may Allah be pleased with them all. Actually the bodies of the first two companions of the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wassallam) have been relocated during the reign of Shah Faisal 1 (1885-1933) of Iraq. Iraq was carved out in 1920 by the British from the Ottomon Empire in 1920 after Turkey’s defeat in World War 1.

The article about the relocation I had read many years ago and I came across the same article on websites, which I reproduce below. This too goes to show without a shadow of doubt again that by Allah’s grace, the bodies of martyrs remain intact even centuries after their burial.

“In 1932 A.D. (1351 A.H.) the then ruling King of Iraq Shah Faisal I, dreamt that he was being addressed by Hudhaifa al-Yamani, who said :- "O king ! Remove Jabir ibn Abdullah Ansari and me from the bank of river Tigris and bury us at some safe place because my grave is already water-logged, while Jabir's grave is slowly getting water-logged." This dream was repeated again the next night but King Faisal I, did not pay attention to it on account of his pre-occupation with state affairs. On the third night Hazrat Hudhaifa was seen in the dream by the grand Mufti of Iraq. Hazrat Hudhaifa said to the grand Mufti :- 'I have been directing the king since two nights to transfer our Bodies but he has not paid any heed. Tell him emphatically to arrange for the transfer of our graves!'

"So after discussing this matter, the King, his Prime Minister and the Grand Mufti decided to carry out this work. It was decided that the Grand Mufti should issue a fatwa(religious ruling) on this matter and the Prime Minister will issue the fatwa to the press, so that the public may know about this great event. It was declared that on 10th Zilhajj after noon prayers the graves shall be opened and the holy bodies shall be transferred to another place.

"As it was Hajj season, pilgrims had gathered in Mecca. They requested King Faisal to postpone the event for a few days so that they all could attend the event after performing the Hajj. Hence, the King postponed this event to 20th Zilhajj.

"After noon prayers, on 20th Zilhajj 1351 A.H. a large number of Muslims and non-Muslims gathered in Baghdad, and the city was heavily crowded. First when the grave of Hazrat Hudhaifa was opened water was fond inside. The body was lifted with a crane in such a way that it safely came on a stretcher. Then the stretcher was lifted by the King, the Grand Mufti, the Prime Minister and Prince Farooq of Egypt and brought to a glass coffin box made especially to keep the holy bodies. The body of Hazrat Jabir was also transferred to the glass box in the same scrupulous manner.

"The most marvelous spectacle was now seen by the huge crowd that had gathered to witness this great event. Both the holy bodies of these true companions of the Holy Prophet (SAWW) were fresh and intact while their open eyes issued forth such divine light that the spectator's eyes were dazzled. Furthermore, their coffin, clothes, kaffan were also intact and at first glance, it appeared as if these heroes of Islam were alive. The two bodies were then taken away and buried afresh near the grave of another great hero of Islam, Salman-e-Farsi, in Salman Park which is 30 miles from Baghdad. This miracle amazed the scientists, philosophers and doctors. They were all bewildered and spellbound to witness this great miracle.

"A German physiologist who had been showing a lot of interest in this was so impressed by the conditions of the bodies, which were buried for more than a thousand years, that he immediately came to the Grand Mufti, held up his hands and said, "What more evidence can there be in support of Islam. I embrace Islam so teach me about it!" Thus before thousands of people this German doctor became a Muslim. His example was followed by many Christians and Jews and for a long time it continued in Baghdad and a large number of people became Muslims as a result of this miracle.

"Some of the material above was published in a Pakistani newspaper, "Daily Jung" on 7th June 1970.”

To continue …Insha Allah.

NASIR

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