The Radiant Light: Hadrat Abdullah
No father on the earth can be more fortunate than he was. He is the father to that elevated personality for whom God created the universe; the First as well as the Last among the Apostles, who is Sun of the sky of ‘Nabwat’, whose light is enormous, who reconnected the relationship of man with God, who kindled the love and affection of God in every heart, and who blessed the lives of the dying ones-Prophet Muhammad Rasulullah (Peace and Blessing be upon him eternally). Of such a splendid, glorious, elevated, exalted, and matchless man, Abdullah is the father.
Abdullah was the youngest and the most beloved son of Abdul Mutallib. After finding the well of ZamZam, Abdul Mutallib had made a vow that if he begot ten sons who all grew young and supported him, then he would sacrifice one of them to God. It came to pass. Ten sons of Abdul Mutallib grew young, healthy, and handsome. He apprised his sons of his vow, and they loyally yielded before their father’s will. It was decided that the arrows of the Ka’bah would be drawn; in whosoever name the arrow drew, he would be slaughtered in the way of God.
They gathered by the Ka’bah and the thrower of the arrows was summoned. He urged Abdul Mutallib to desist from his stance for his sons were young and handsome, but he did not budge an inch for he was unable to turn away from God. He said: “I made a promise to my God, and I would fulfill my promise. By God! Such praise is not done to anybody that is done for God. When He is my Master and I am his slave, and I have made a vow to Him, I do not like it to desist from fulfilling my vow. I would rather not desire to live any more.” The arrow was drawn and it named Abdullah, the youngest, most handsome, and most beloved, but it was not matter of his qualities but of Abdul Mutallib and his God.
The knife was brought, Abdul Mutallib was folding his sleeves when the news reached every house of Mecca. The chiefs of the Quraysh rushed to the Haram and bade him to abstain from slaughtering his son. He replied it was the affair between him and his God. All the chiefs now besought him to please stop, once such a dreadful custom was incepted, no one on Earth could stop it. After long discussion it was decided that they would go to the Irafa, a soothsayer of Hijaz, and use her decision in this matter as her decisions were implemented accordingly. All of them went to Yathrib where they were told she was living in Khyber, so the Quraysh went to Khyber. They apprised her of the issue; she asked them to wait, for her ‘Tabie’ to come, whose counsel she needed. The other day her ‘Tabie’ had visited her. At first, she asked as to what was the ‘diat’ of the murder in vogue among them. They told ten camels. So she advised Abdul Mutallib and his people to go back and draw a lot of Abdullah against ten camels, and to keep on the practice of increasing ten camels for each turn till the arrow would be drawn in favor of the camels. Thus the number of camels so drawn would be slaughtered instead of Abdullah, and his vow would still be fulfilled and valid.
All the Quraysh then returned to Mecca. The arrows were drawn for Abdullah against ten camels, but name of Abdullah was cast out. They increased ten camels for each turn. In the tenth turn the arrow drew in favor of the hundred camels in place of Abdullah! Nevertheless, Abdul Mutallib ordered to draw the arrows thrice; and still, all the three times the arrow drew in favor of camels instead of Abdullah. So Abdul Mutallib happily slaughtered one hundred camels and served an open feast to all, even to the birds and the wild animals.
We cannot estimate the pleasure and joy Abdul Mutallib had felt on the occasion. Now he planned to perform his marriage. He chose Amianh, the beloved daughter of Wahb bin Abd Munaaf bin Zuhra, the chief of Banu Zuhrah, the clan of Quraysh tribe as his wife. Abdul Mutallib visited the house of Wahb and proposed his son for their daughter where they happily agreed. The age of Abdullah was 18 at the occasion and his beauty and youth raised storms in many young girls’ hearts. In fact, the scholar of `Syrah’ writes: “Hazrat Abdullah suffered with patience, breaking circumstances from womenfolk of his age, like Hadrat Yousuf suffered at the hands of Zulekhah, the wife of ’Aziz’ of Eygpt.”
In this context, a phrase of the commentator of ‘Mawahib-ul-Dunyia’ may be perused: “Abdullah was a radiant light in the Quraysh. He was the most handsome youth and even the women folk of Quraysh had fallen in his love. It was imminent they might have gone mad in his love.”
Hazrat Abdullah was a chaste young man like Hazrat Yousuf (AS). The young girls of Makkah fell in his love; they attempted to get his attention by exposing their beauty and manifesting their wealth. Some of them went to the extent of offering one hundred camels to be slaughtered just to gain his proximity. He refused these girls saying, “Death is better than doing forbidden acts; I do not see legitimacy in it. I cannot accept what you propose for a gentleman always protects his honor and faith.”
Wahb accepted Abdullah for Amianh, the marriage ceremony was held quickly after and both the bride and groom commenced their matrimonial life together. As you know, Abdul Mutallib was a trader; he used to send the caravans to Syria and Yemen. So Abdul Mutallib assigned Abdullah to accompany a caravan to Syria. After a successful trip, on his way back, he fell ill and thus stayed with his maternal uncles at Yathrib (now know as Madinah Munawarrah), where he passed away after one month’s illness.
His sudden death caused distress to all, but for Aminah it was the doom’s day. She wrote an elegy for her deceased husband which reflects her heartfelt sentiments: “Valley of Butha caused son of Hashim to lie dead, wrapped in curtains, he became neighbor of Makkah in his grave; Death called him suddenly and he silently accepted the call; Death left behind but no example of son of Hashim, At night when his friends took his funeral cot, they frequently changed the shoulders for the biggest crowd wanted to take the turn; Although death and its difficulties caught him; yet, he was the most generous, kind, and considerate.”
The blessed Prophet (ﷺ) was still in the womb or his mother when God took his father away.
Allamah Zainy Dalhaan writes in his book ‘Svrat’, “Hazrat Abbas narrates when Abdullah died, the angels supplication to God: O God! Our Lord, Your beloved Prophet has become an orphan, his father has died. God replied to them He would be Rasulullah’s (ﷺ) Protector and Helper. The other narration relates that God said to the angels that He was Rasulullah’s (ﷺ) friend, Saver, Helper, Lord, Provider of provisions, and Enough for him for his everything. So the angels should recite ‘Darud” on Rasulullah (ﷺ) and receive blessings by his name.” -Zia un-Nabi