Monday, 28 January 2013

Life of the Prophet: Invasion of The Elephants

All of the events before the Prophet Muhammad’s birth (saw) should not be overlooked, because they were a pre-lude to the birth of the great prophet (sws) specifically with his grandfather.

First incidence: rediscovery of the well of zamzam by Abu Mutallib, who was given the location in a dream.

Second incidence: invasion of elephant which defined these people.

Abaraha was a very strategic leader and him building a cathedral was not just for his own religious belief but to make his homeland more viable by attracting the masses. He saw the Kabah as a competition and built his cathedral to rival with it in order to let the land flourish. A man by the name of “Kanani” went to the restroom in the cathedral and rubbed his feces all over it. He then goes and brags about it. When Abaraha discovers it, he sets on a mission to destroy the kabah. This is why there is etiquette in Islam, you give them the message but you leave them be. He gathers an army of 60,000 soldiers and an elephant breeder. The elephants alone will completely bulldoze down the towns and will instill fear in the people. When Abraha starts heading towards the kabah, people start gathering together to fight him.

Abraha was a tyrant but being a military strategist, he was not blood thirsty. When he was heading to the kabah, he would actually stop and talk to the people and tell them why he wanted to destroy the kabah. Some people actually understood why he was going to do it but it stayed as they’re obligation to protect the kabah. Along his journey he meets a man name “Dhul Naffar”, who gathered his tribe to destroy Abraha who literally ran them over. At the end of the fight, when “Dhul Naffar” was brought to Abaraha, he told him to keep him alive in order to strategize with him against the people of kabah. They then come across a second tribe “Sharan and Nafis” which he runs over. He then captures their commander, “Nufain bin Abib”. He then establishes himself in the land and when he starts to come across more and more Arab tribes, they begin to not even try to fight him.  When he gets to “Taif”, the commander completely surrenders and says that they are down with Abraha. The commander also gives Abaraha a man who is literally the human map and scout, “Abu Righal”. On their journey, “Abu Righal” died and his grave later became a plan to defile due to his treachery. Something interesting is that during the time of the people of Thamud, there was also a man named “Abu Righal” who was not killed with his people and when people found out, they stoned him to death because he was the ring leader with his people. Some tribes fought him, others laid low and others actually worked with him to accomplish his goal. 

When Abraha gets to the outskirts of makah, he sends a man to tell the people that he was not there to kill people but to just destroy the Kabah. While the army was camped out, they began to raid a bunch of places. The man goes to Abu Mutallib and tells him the conditions. Abu Muttalib then speaks to Abraha, who is hit by a vast amount of respect for the man. Abu Muttalib only asks for the two hundred camels and Abraha is in completely taken back. Abu Muttalib then says, “What I want you to understand is that I own these camels and what you do not realize is that the house that you are trying to destroy also has an owner and he will take care of it…” Abu Muttalib gets his camels back and heads back to Makkah. When he gets back to makkah, he goes to the kabbah and while holding the door, he says some amazing words, “Oh Allah, stop them because if any man tries to attack his home, he defends it, so Allah please defend your home. Oh Allah, do not let their cross dominate here. All their energies are attacking you, oh Allah but  if you deicide that you want to leave them be, you know what is best.“ And the city of Makkah is evacuated.  

Abaraha starts to walk towards the Kabah. Then, “Nufail” (one of the captured commanders) who had been hanging out with “Onais” (elephant breeder) goes to the biggest elephant, “Mahmood” (the one Abraha used to ride on), lifts its ear and speaks to it, “Listen, you are about to attack the house and place that belongs to my creator and your creator. Sit down, Mahmood, and go back to where you came from”. “Nufail” then walks away and Mahmood sits down which goes completely against an elephant’s behavior. Onais tries to get him up but every time they turned to the Makkah, he would not move. The army then just leaves him, and enters Makkah. Then we know what happens with the surah,

Have you not considered, [O Muhammad], how your Lord dealt with the companions of the elephant?

Did He not make their plan into misguidance?

And He sent against them birds in flocks,

Striking them with stones of hard clay,

And He made them like eaten straw.

The birds came out of the blue, flew over Makkah with smalls stones and threw them down. These attacks completely destroy Abraha’s army. Although, physics might be involved, there are was something out of this world happening. When the stone would fall, it would literally cut off limbs or pierce through elephants. It was completely decimating. There were bodies everywhere yet there were people who survived which created more of a legend about the Kabah. Literally, two months before the Prophet (sws) birth.  

What happened to Abraha?

He was hit with stones but was able to escape and when they take him back to Yemen, he begins to rot. When he reaches back to his kingdom, he was a vegetable, and almost all of his limbs had fell off. This is why there was something interesting about the rocks, because if someone was hit by a rock, later on they would get sick and they would literally rot.

This whole incident defined the generation by restoring sacredness around the Kabah. 

Aisha (R) (born 40 years after she says, “Not only was the story of the elephants famous for how only protected the Kabah. The man who was the elephant breeder (Onias) and his assistant were still in Makkah and people used to know them and they had gone blind and would beg for food.” They remained as an example to people of the attack of the elephants.

After the incident, a huge storm comes in and literally washes the bodies away.  

{credits to qalaminstitute}

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