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The Sealed Nectar

 The Sealed Nectar by Shaykh Safi ur-Rahman

With respect to the two women, the pledge was taken orally for the Prophet (Peace be upon him) had never shaken hands with a strange lady.

The Prophet (Peace be upon him) then asked the group to appoint twelve deputies to preach Islam to their people in Madinah, to shoulder the responsibility of implementing the articles of this pledge and to guide the respective men of their own tribes in matters relating to the propagation of Islam. The deputies elected were nine from Al-Khazraj: As‘ad bin Zurarah bin ‘Ads, Sa‘d bin Ar-Rabi‘ bin ‘Amr, ‘Abdullah bin Rawahah bin Tha‘labah, Rafi‘ bin Malik bin Al-‘Ajlan, Al-Bara’ bin Ma‘rur bin Sakhr, ‘Abdullah bin ‘Amr bin Haram, ‘Ubadah bin As-Samit bin Qais, Sa‘d bin ‘Ubadah bin Dulaim and Al-Mundhir bin ‘Amr bin Khunais. Three others were from Al-Aws: Usaid bin Hudair bin Sammak, Sa‘d bin Khaithamah bin Al-Harith and Rifa‘a bin ‘Abdul Mundhir bin Zubair. Once again, those twelvemen were sworn to act as surety over the affairs of their people just as the Christ’s disciples did, and the Prophet would act as surety over his people, meaning all the Muslims.

Somehow or other, the news of these secret desert meetings with the Madinese leaked out. The Prophet immediately knew that it was a certain pudgy ugly devil, inhabited in Al-‘Aqabah, who discovered their meeting, and he threatened to settle his account with him as soon as possible.

On hearing this, Al-‘Abbas bin Nadlah said “By Allâh, Who has sent you in Truth, we are powerful enough to put the people of Mina (the Quraishites) to our swords tomorrow, if you desire.” The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said “We have not been commanded to follow that course. Now, back to your camps.” They went back to sleep till morning.

No sooner did Quraish hear of this treaty than a kind of trouble-provoking tumult began to mushroom in all directions. They realized quite fully that an allegiance of this sort is bound to produce far-reaching ramifications of direct impact on their lives and wealth. The following day, a large delegation comprising the leaders and arch-criminals of Makkah set out for the camp of the Madinese to protest severely against the treaty. They addressed the Madinese: “O people of Khazraj, it transpired to us that you have come here to conclude a treaty with this man (Muhammad) and evacuate him out of Makkah. By Allâh, we do really hold in abhorrence any sort of fight between you and us.”

The Madinese polytheists having known nothing about the secretly taken pledge, began to swear by Allâh and answered in good faith that there was no truth in the report. ‘Abdullah bin Ubai bin Salul, a Madinese polytheist, refuted their allegations denouncing them as null and void, claiming that his people would never initiate anything unless he gave them clear orders.

The Madinese Muslims, however, remained silent neither negating nor confirming. The Quraishite leaders seemed to be almost convinced by the arguments presented by the polytheists, and went back home frustrated. However, they did not fully acquiesce in the words they heard. They began to scrutinize the smallest details, and trace the minutest news till it was established beyond a shadow of doubt that the pact did take place, but that was after the Madinese pilgrims had left Makkah. In a fit of rage, they pursued the pilgrims but did not succeed in catching hold of anyone except Sa‘d bin ‘Ubadah. They subjected him to unspeakable tortures, but he was later rescued by Al-Mut‘im bin ‘Adi and Harith bin Harb bin Omaiya with whom he had trade relations.

That is the story of the Second ‘Aqabah Pledge, later known as the Great ‘Aqabah Pledge, effected in an atmosphere of love, allegiance and mutual support between Madinese believers and weak Makkan Muslims. This new spirit of affection, rapport and cooperation could never be attributable to a fleeing whim, on the contrary, it totally derived from an already deeply-established approach, viz. Belief in Allâh, His Messenger and His Book. It was a Belief so rooted in the selves that it managed to stand immune to all powers of injustice and aggression, and could be translated into miracles in the practical aspects of action and ideology pursuit. That sort of Belief was the real instrument for the Muslims to record in the annals of history unprecedented breakthroughs. We are also sure that the future will always remain wanting as regards those great achievements carried out by those great men.

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