The Battle of Uhud
In 3 A.H., the Muslims had just come out of an extremely successful battle the year prior, the Battle of Badr. At that battle, the Muslims defeated their opponents. Many of the Quresh’s top leaders were destroyed in that battle, and it left the Quresh in a state of shock and disarray.
Although they were badly beat, they wouldn’t settle for such an outcome without revenge. The pre-Islamic Arabs believed strongly in “An eye for an eye” so they prepared to attack.
The Muslims greatly benefited from their victory at Badr. It showed the rest of Arabia the leadership, faith, and comrade the Muslims possessed. They were ready to sacrifice everything for their Beloved Nabi (ﷺ) and were fearless in the face of the enemy.
When the Quresh started marching, the Muslims found out that they had to prepare for war again. Although reluctant to fight, they majority of them knew they had to do so in order to protect the peace, mercy, and societal reformations that were being put into place. And so they set off to defend their principles and ideals.
The revenge driven Quresh had begun battle against the Muslims with every intention of destroying Islam and harming the Prophet (ﷺ). However, as the battle ensued, the Muslims gained the upper hand. Ameer Hamza and Imam Ali were at the front lines fighting multiple enemies at a time. Imam Ali’s sword (Zulfiqar) tore through enemy lines and disabled the Quresh while Ameer Hamza’s strength and courage overpowered everyone who dared to come in front of him. However, as Ameer Hamza marched forward, he was ambushed by a spear-marksman. Even with the spear in his body, Ameer Hamza still moved forward, but soon he fell to the ground and became a shaheed (martyr).
The uncle and great supporter of Rasulullah (ﷺ), Ameer Hamza, was taken down, but the Muslims kept fighting out of love of Rasulullah (ﷺ). They didn’t want any harm to come to him and they gave their lives fighting for him (ﷺ).
Soon the tides changed, and the Quresh started retreating. There was a group of Muslim archers stationed at the back to protect the Muslim camp from being routed; however, when they saw the Kufaar retreat, they left their posts against the direct order of Rasulullah (ﷺ). They saw all the war-booty and were temporarily blinded by greed and arrogance from winning the Battle of Badr.
At that moment, Khalid ibn Waleed, who at that time hadn’t accepted Islam yet, saw this opening and charged around Mount Uhud to route the Muslim camp. Unfortunately, with no archery backup, the camp was in danger. The Kufaar managed to hurt Rasulullah (ﷺ) and break his tooth. Rumors then started to spread that Rasulullah (ﷺ) had been killed.
With the kufaar in all four directions, the Sahabah jumped towards Rasulullah (ﷺ) ready to die for him and formed a circle of protection. They were using their bodies as a shield to protect him (ﷺ). Imam Ali didn’t believe the rumors, and ran from the front lines to protect Rasulullah (ﷺ). Hadrat Talha used his body as a shield and suffered 39 wounds to his body. Hadrat Abu Bakr stayed right by Rasulullah (ﷺ) like a rock, unwavering.
Regarding this intense moment, Hadrat Abu Bakr narrated, “When it was Uhud Day and at the time that the Prophet (ﷺ) was left behind, I was the first to go back and see him. Before him I saw a man fighting to shield him from the enemies. I said to myself: ‘I wish he were Talha. Let my father and mother be sacrificed for you. (O Allâh) Let him be Talha! Let my parents be sacrificed for you!’ On the way, I was overtaken by Abu ‘Ubaidah bin Al-Jarrah, who was then moving as swiftly as a bird. We both rushed to dress the Prophet (ﷺ)’s wounds. There we found Talha suffering from serious wounds before the Messenger of Allâh (ﷺ). The Prophet (ﷺ) said: ‘See to your brother. His deed entitled him for an abode in Paradise.’ I noticed that two rings of the iron-ringed helmet had penetrated his cheek. So I set out to take them out; but Abu ‘Ubaidah demanded: ‘By Allâh, O Abu Bakr — I beseech you, let me do it myself.’ Fearing to hurt the Prophet (ﷺ) he started pulling one of the two rings out very slowly and carefully with his mouth. Then he pulled the arrow out by his mouth, too. Consequently, his front tooth fell. Then I proceeded to pull the second out; but Abu ‘Ubaidah besought me to leave it: ‘O, Abu Bakr, I adjure you by Allâh to let me do it.’ He pulled the second ring very slowly and carefully with his mouth — till it came out. The Messenger of Allâh (ﷺ) said: ‘See to your brother. He has proved to be worthy of being housed in Paradise.’ We approached Talha to cure him but found out that he had had some ten sword-strokes in his body. [Za’d Al-Ma’ad 2/95] (This showed how valiantly Hadrat Talha struggled on that day).”
The Muslims were able to regroup, and retreated up Mount Uhud away from the Kufaar.
Although this battle proved to be one of the most difficult in Muslim history, it demonstrated the love the Sahaba had for Rasulullah (ﷺ) and their willingness to sacrifice everything for him and Islam.