Men Around The Prophet
ZAID IBN AL- KHATTAAB
The Hawk of The Day of Al-Yamaamah
ZAID IBN AL- KHATTAAB
The Hawk of The Day of Al-Yamaamah
One day the Prophet (PBUH) sat with a group of Muslims, and while theywere talking, the Messenger paused, then spoke to those who were sittingaround him saying, "Among you there is a man whose molar in He is greaterthan Mount Uhud."
Fright and terror appeared upon the faces of all those present becauseeach one of them was afraid lest he should be the person about whom the Prophet (PBUH) prophesied a dreadful end.
Years passed and all those Companions met their ends as martyrs exceptAbu Hurairah and Ar- Rajjaal Ibn `Unfuwah, who were still alive. Abu Hurairah was extremely terrified by that prophecy and did not feel comfortable until fate revealed the secret of the unfortunate man: Ar-Rajjaal Ibn `Unfuwah, who apostatized from Islam and joined Musailamah the Liar, and thus witnessed the fulfillment of prophecy upon him.
One day, Ar-Rajjaal Ibn `Unfuwah went to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH)and acknowledged him and learned the teachings of Islam. Then he went tohis people and did not return to Al Madiinah till the death of the Prophetand the choice of As-siddiiq as the Caliph of the Muslims. Ar-Rajjaal toldAbu Bakr the news of the inhabitants of Al-Yamaamah and their support forMusailamah and proposed that he be sent to Al-Yamaamah as an envoy in orderto confirm Islam among them! The Caliph gave him permission. Ar-Rajjaal wentto Al-Yamaamah, and when he saw the numerous supporters of Musailamah, hebelieved that they would be the victors. His perfidious nature caused himto reserve a place in the prospective state of Musailamah. Consequently,he apostatized from Islam and joined Musailamah, who promised him a prosperousfuture.
Ar-Rajjaal was more dangerous to Islam than Musailamah himself becausehe exploited his previous association with Islam and the period he had lived with the Messenger in Al-Madiinah, memorizing many verses of the Holy Qur'aan, and his intercession to Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him), the Caliph of the Muslims. Ar-Rajjaal exploited all those things for evil purposesand cunningly supported and confirmed the sovereignty of Musailamah andhis false prophethood.
He walked among people saying that he heard the Messenger of Allah saythat he had taken Musailamah into partnership and when the Messenger (PBUH)died, he was worthy of carrying the banner of prophethood and revelationafter him.
The number of Musailamah's supporters increased to a great extent because of the lies of Ar-Rajjaal and his cunning exploitation of his previous relationships with Islam and the Messenger (PBUH). When the news of Ar-Rajjaal reachedAl-Madiinah, the Muslims were exceedingly angry because of the lies of thisdangerous apostate who used to mislead people. His evil words and deeds expandedthe range of the war and intensified the conflict the Muslims had with theirenemies and adversaries. The most anxious and the most eager to meet Ar-Rajjaalwas Zaid Ibn Al-Khattaab, whose heroism and fame was outstanding in the biographies and books of Islamic history.
1 am sure that you have heard about Zaid Ibn Al-Khattaab. He was the brother of `Umar Ibn Al- Khattaab (May Allah be pleased with both). Yes, he was his elder brother. He was older than `Umar Ibn Al-Khattaab and he embraced Islam and gained the honor of martyrdom before him.
He was the ideal hero whose motto was "Actions speak louder than words." His faith in Allah and His Messenger and His religion was strong and firm. He never stayed away from the Messenger in any setting, and in every battle he sought martyrdom more than he sought victory.
On the Day of Uhud, when the fight between the believers and the polytheists was very fierce, Zaid was fighting boldly. His brother `Umar Ibn Al-khattaab (May Allah be pleased with him) saw him as his shield fell down and he was within reach of the enemies. `Umar cried, `O Zaid, take my shield and fight with it!" Zaid replied, `I want martyrdom as you want it." He continuedfighting without his shield with astonishing heroism.
As we mentioned before, Zaid (May Allah be pleased with him) was longing to meet Ar-Rajjaal, wishing to put an end to his devilish life.
In Zaid's opinion, Ar-Rajjaal was not only an apostate but also a hypocrite and self-seeker. Zaid was like his brother `Umar Ibn Al -khattaab in hisabhorrence of hypocrisy and lying, especially when hypocrisy aimed at selfishgain and mean purposes. For those mean purposes Ar-Rajjaal committed hisatrocious acts, resulting in the numbers of Musailamah's supporters greatlyincreasing and causing great numbers of deaths in the Apostate Battles .First he deceived them, and finally he led them to their deaths for the sakeof his devilish hopes.
Zaid prepared himself to conclude his faithful life by annihilating that impiety not only in Musailamah's person but also in Ar-Rajjaal Ibn `Unfuwah, who was more dangerous and more cunning.
The Day of Al-Yamaamah began gloomy and dim. Khaalid Ibn Al-Waliid gathered the Army of Islam and directed it to its positions and left the leadership of the army to Zaid lbn Al-Khattaab, who fought Bani Haniifah, the followers of Musailamah, boldly and fiercely. At the beginning, the battle was leaning towards the side of the polytheists, and many of the Muslims fell as martyrs. Zaid saw the feelings of horror in the hearts of some Muslims, so he climbed a hill and cried, "O people! Grit your teeth, fight your enemy and go straight By Allah, I'll never speak till Allah beats them or I meet Him and thenI give my evidence." Then he descended, gritting his teeth, pressing thislips, never moving his tongue with even a whisper.
His only hope was to kill Ar-Rajjaal, so he began to penetrate the enemy army like an arrow searching for its target, until he saw him.
Then he began to attack him from right and left. Whenever the deluge of the battle swallowed Ar- Rajjaal and hid him, Zaid dived towards him until the waves pushed him to the surface again. Zaid approached him and stretched out his sword towards him, but the furious human waves swallowed Ar- Rajjaal again. Then Zaid followed and dived after him so as not to allow him toescape.
At last, Zaid held him by his neck and with the sword, he cut off his head which was full of vanity, lies, and villainy. By the death of the great liar, the ranks of its whole army began to fall. Musailamah and Al-Mahkam lbn At-Tufail were filled with horror. The killing of Ar-Rajjaal spread in Musailamah's army like a fire on a stormy day.
Musailamah used to promise them inevitable victory and that he, Ar-Rajjaal, and Al-Mahkam Ibn Attufail would promulgate their new religion and establish their state on the day following their victory! Now that Ar-Rajjaal waskilled, the whole prophecy of Musailamah was seen as a lie, and tomorrowAl- Mahkam and Musailamah would meet the same fate. Thus the fatal blowof Zaid Ibn Al-Khattaab caused all that destruction in the lines of Musailamah.
No sooner did the Muslims hear the news than they were filled with pride and dignity. The wounded men rose again holding their swords, taking nointerest in their wounds.
Even for those who were about to die, nothing connected them with lifeexcept that very faint light caused by hearing the good news which was likea very beautiful and rosy dream. They wished, if they had any strength tofight with, they would be able to witness the triumph of the battle in itsglorious conclusion. But how could that be? Since the doors of Paradise hadopened to welcome them, they were now hearing their names while they werebeing called to immortality!’
Zaid raised his hands towards Heaven supplicating Allah and thanking Him for His blessings. Then he returned to his sword and his silence, as he had sworn by Allah not to utter a word until he had completed the victory or gainedthe honor of martyrdom.
The battle began to lean to the side of the Muslims and their inevitable victory began to approach rapidly. At that moment Zaid did not desire abetter conclusion to his life than praying to Allah to grant him martyrdomon that Day of Yamaamah! The wind of Paradise blew to fill his soul withlonging, his eyes with tears, and his determination with firmness. He beganto fight as if he were searching for his glorious destiny, and the herofell. So he died a martyr, magnanimously, gracefully and happily. The Armyof Islam returned to Al-Madiinah victorious.
While `Umar and the Caliph Abu Bakr were welcoming those who were returning trimuphantly, `Umar began to search for his homecoming brother with longing eyes.
Zaid was so tall that he could be easily recognized. But before `Umar had strained his eyes, one of the returning Muslims approached and consoled him. `Umar said, `May Allah have mercy upon Zaid, he preceded me in two instances. He embraced Islam before me and gained martyrdom before me, too."
In spite of the victories that Islam won and enjoyed, `Umar "Al Faaruuq" (Umar) never forgot his brother Zaid, and he always said, "Whenever theeast wind blows, I smell the scent of Zaid."
Yes! The east wind carries the perfume of Zaid (May Allah be pleased with him). But if the caliph gives me permission to add these words to his great expression so as to complete the meaning of his saying, these are the words. ''Whenever the winds of triumph blow on Islam since the Day of Al- Yamaamah, I am finds the scent, the struggles, the heroism, and the greatness of Zaid in these winds!"
Blessings be upon Al-khattaab under the flag of the Messenger (PBUH). Blessed be they the moment they embraced Islam. Blessed be they when they fought andwere martyred. And blessings be upon them in the hereafter.