This is a long post but it is the complete eleventh book of Riyad-us-Saliheen called the Book of Jihad. This is the 235th chapter and provides tremendous insight into the truth about the true nature of Islamic Jihad. Before, you examine the ahadith listed please read the introduction to the Riyad-us-Saliheen.
The introduction is important for what it does and does not mention. The introduction mentions everything about the Riyad-us-Saliheen except the chapter on Jihad. Mapping Shar’ ia examined the books used by Islamic centers in America and found that the Riyad-us-Saliheen was used quite frequently and you can see why based on the over-the-top endorsement provided.
Riyad-us-Saliheen: Its significance and a brief biography of Imam Nawawi
Riyad-us-Saliheen, often referred to as The Garden of the Righteous, is a famous and popular collection of Ahadith by Imam an Nawawi. It is considered as one of the most reliable sources of the sayings and traditions of the Holy Prophet (SAWS). Riyadh-us-Saliheen is said to have a remarkable number of authentic, strong as well as a small number of weak Ahadith. The Ahadith compiled in this collection by one of the most reputed Imams of Islamic history cover every aspect of Islamic creed and Muslim moral conduct. It is a complete source of advice and guidelines for the entire Muslim Ummah.
Significance of Riyad-us-Saliheen
Riyahd-us-Saliheen holds great importance among the various compilations of Hadith as it has Ahadith extracted from six canonical collections of the Prophet’s traditions including Sahih Al-Bukhari, Sahih Al-Muslim, Sunan Abu Dawood, Sunan An-Nisai, Sunan Ibn Majah and At-Tirmithi. It is one of the greatest books of Ahadith, which is most frequently referred to and read by Muslims for the knowledge of Hadith. Ahadith in this collection, as in other ones, have been reported in the traditional style of presenting the actual narrative and the isnad (the chain of narrators documenting the route for the transmission of the report). The isnad determine who narrated a Hadith and from whom; Isnad determine the reliability of a Hadith and they therefore hold some importance.
Riyad-us-Saliheen carries Ahadith about all walks of life; it cover Prophet’s words guiding the Ummah in matters ranging from Islamic beliefs to Islamic law, from human relationships to manners and morals, and from worship and prayer to Tawassul. It is the most reliable source of knowledge with respect to Hadith and so it has attained universal accolade.
Categorization and division of chapters
Riyad-us-Saliheen has approximately 2000 authentic Ahadith. It has 372 chapters and 19 sections covering good manners, etiquettes of eating, dressing up, sleeping, lying and sitting, greeting, visiting the sick, etiquettes of traveling, I’tikaf, Hajj, seeking knowledge, explanation of virtues, praise of Allah and expression of gratitude, supplicating, fasting, remembrance of Allah, details of prohibited actions, forgiveness, and miscellaneous Ahadith of significant value. This immense range of topics offer an opportunity to the readers to extract maximum knowledge of the messages of the Prophet (SAW) to his Ummah. The style of presentation in a systematic manner supersedes other works of similar nature.
Each section of the book provides exhaustive information on a specific topic. Every section carries a title. For instance, the section about mannerisms is entitled ‘Book One – The Book of Good Manners’; the section dealing with Hajj is entitled ‘Book Ten – The Book of Hajj’ and so on. This kind of systematic categorization of the contents of this book of Ahadith has made it an easy resource for Muslims.
Every category of Hadith is often preceded by a Quranic verse of relevance and importance. This helps to connect the sayings of the Prophet (S) with the Book of Allah and to have greater impact on the validity of the Hadith. In his introduction to An Explanation of Riyadh-al-Saliheen by Shaykh Muhammad ibn Salih Al-Uthaymeen, Dr. Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Ahmad Al-Tayyar, the supervisor of the Ministry of Islamic Affairs and Religious Endowments, states:
“The author (Imam an-Nawawi) adopted a practice of inaugurating the majority of chapters with verses from the Book of Allah, the Most High, corresponding to the subject of the traditions quoted in the chapter. The mode of arrangement and chapter division has been presented in a systematic manner, superseding the other works by virtue of this innovative arrangement.”
Source: An Explanation of Riyadh-al-Saliheen p.4. The Quran and Sunnah Society)
Classification of Ahadith in Riyadh-us-Saliheen
Ahadith in this compilation have been classified according to their strength. Imam An-Nawawi’s book has both strong and weak Ahadith thouhg the collection is said to have a majority of strong Ahadith (Ahadith with credible chain of narrators) and the maximum number of weak Ahadith when compared to Sahih Al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim. According to Imam Albani’s introduction to Riyadh-us-Saliheen, the book has some 37 weak Ahadith. For Instance, Imam Albani, in his introduction to Riyadh-us-Saliheen, relates Hadith 67 as a weak Hadith. The Hadith in ‘The Book of Feeling Allaah’s observance’ in Riyadh-us-Saliheen is recorded this way:
“On the authority of Abee Ya’la Shaddaad bin Aws, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet said, ‘The wise is he who submits his soul, subjugates it to his Lord and works for that which is after death. The incompetent is he who follows his desires and wishes from Allaah [what he] wishes.’ “
Narrated by at Tirmithi, who said, ‘A Hassan hadeeth’. (Weak Hadith)
Imam Albani explains that this Hadith is weak because ‘the isnad is da’eef (weak) as it has Aboo Bakr Ibn Abee Maryam, who was no longer himself and became mixed up after his house was stolen from him.’ (Source: Da’eef ul Jaami us Sagheer no.4305.)
Another example of Da’eef Hadith from Imam Albani’s introduction to Riyadh-us-Saliheen is Hadith 292 from the chapter of the Rights of the Husband over his Wife:
“On the authority of Um Salamah, may Allaah be pleased with her, who said that the Prophet said, ‘Any woman who dies in a state in which her husband was pleased with her will enter the paradise.’
Narrated at Tirmithi, who said, ‘A Hassan Saheeh hadith.’”
Imam Albani explains that this Hadith is weak because ‘in its isnad; there are two unknown [majhool] narrators. See ad Da’eef no.1426.
Another example of Da’eef Hadith is Hadith 736 in the Book of the Etiquettes of Eating, chapter 100 – The Chapter of Saying Bismillah at the Beginning and Al Hamdullolah at the end of Eating.
“Umaiyyah bin Makhshi (May Allaah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allaah (SALL ALLAAHU ‘ALAYHI WA SALLAM) was sitting while a man was eating food. That man did not mention the Name of Allaah (before commencing to eat) till only a morsel of food was left. When he raised it to his mouth, he said: “Bismillah awwalahu wa akhirahu (With the Name of Allaah, in the beginning and in the end).” Messenger of Allaah (SALL ALLAAHU ‘ALAYHI WA SALLAM) smiled at this and said, “Satan had been eating with him but when he mentioned the Name of Allaah, Satan vomited all that was in his stomach.”
Reported by Abu Dawud and An-Nasaa’i.
Imam Albani states that this Hadith is weak because ‘its isnaad is da’eef – in it is al Muthanna bin Abdir Rahmaan al Khazzaaee, who is majhool, as stated by Ibn ul Madeenee.’
In defense of the presence of weak Ahadith in Riyadh-us-Saliheen Imam Albani states:
“And I feel the author’s excuse, may Allah have mercy upon him, for these weak Ahadith falling into his work, despite his attempt to only relate authentic Ahadith in it, is due to his reliance, for the most part, on Imaam Tirmithi’s rulings of hassan and saheeh and upon Abu Dawood’s remaining silent about the rulings of certain Ahadith . . .”
(Riyadh us Saaliheen, p. 11. Al Maktab ul Islaami, 1412 AH.)
Virtues of Riyadh-us-Saliheen
Riyadh-us-Saliheen is highly recommended for all Muslims as it has a large number of authentic Ahadith from six canonical sources of Hadith. These Ahadith can help Muslims in all matters of life, major or minor. The content of this exalted endeavor of Imam an-Nawawi is appropriate for general readers and ordinary Muslims with regard to arousing a desire and rendering a source of motivation for performing virtuous deeds. This book provides knowledge on many of the matters related to Deen, worldly affairs and the affairs of the Hereafter. While discussing the merits of Riyadh-us-Saliheen in his introduction to An Explanation of Riyadh-al-Saliheen by Shaykh Muhammad ibn Salih Al-Uthaymeen, Dr. Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Ahmad Al-Tayyar writes:
“It is a book of instruction, unparalleled in content, pertinent to one’s existence on an individual and societal platform. It provides a complete code of conduct in these two spheres of life in a manner uncomplicated and intelligible, capable of being understood by both the learned and the general populace.”
Riyadh-us-Saliheen deserves a superior status as its content has the potential to quench the thirst of knowledge of scholars and laymen alike. Over the years it has sustained a lofty stature among the scholars as they have studied and elucidated it with dedication. Many general leaders of the mosques, scholars and students of Hadith have used it and are still using it as a resource book.
Biographical overview of Imam An Nawawi
Imam An Nawawi’s full name was Abu Zakaria Mohiuddin Yahya. He was the son of Sharaf ibn Muriy ibn Hasan ibn Husain ibn Jum’a ibn Hazam Al-Hazami Annawawi and was born at a place named Nawa near Damascus in the year 631 A.H. Imam An Nawawi had a great love for knowledge and learning. Even at the very young age of ten he declined all offers made by the children of his age for fun and games; instead he spent his hours in reciting the Quran and enlightening his heart with knowledge. According to Sheikh Yasin bin Yousad Marakashi:
“Imam Nawawi would always avoid play and would remain busy with the recitation of the Noble Quran.”
(Collection from Riyadh-us-Saliheen p. 6. Darussalam)
Imam’s father respected his son’s craving for knowledge and took him to Damascus in the year 649 A.H. for formal education. Imam Nawawi joined Madrasah Rawahiyah affiliated with the Ummvi University. He studied there for two years and was guided by more than twenty celebrated teachers. He mastered the fields of Hadith, Islamic Jurisprudence, syntax and etymology. Imam’s teachers appreciated his quest for knowledge and his methods of study. He devoted almost all of his time to learning, reading and writing. He spent most of his time in contemplation and to find solutions for different complex issues. He had a sharp memory and remarkable depth of thought.
Imam An Nawawi led a simple life – he wore simple dress and ate plain food. He indulged in religious and academic pursuits instead of developing any worldly interests. He was a God-fearing and humble person. Sheikh Mohiuddin describes Imam An Nawawi’s exalted person in these words:
“Imam Nawawi had three distinctive qualities: First, having knowledge and its dissemination. Second, to withdraw completely from worldly inclinations; and the third, inviting all that is good (Islam) to maintain Al-Ma’ruf [i.e., Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do] and forbidding Al-Munkar [polytheism and disbelief and all that Islam has forbidden.”
(Collection from Riyadh-us-Saliheen p. 8. Darussalam)
Imam An Nawawi lived a short life of 28 years but during these years he provided the Ummah with some great books and compilations of Islamic knowledge. Some of his prestigious works include Commentary on Sahih Bukhari, Tahdhib-ul-Asma was-Sifat, Kitab-ul-Adhkar, At-Tibyan, Arba’een, Riyadh-us-Saliheen, Mukhtasar At-Tirmidhi, and Tabaqat Ash-Shafi’iyah. Imam An-Nawawi died at Nawa on the 24th of Rajab 676 A.H. and he was buried in his home town.
Allah, the Exalted, says:
“And fight against the Mushrikun (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah) collectively as they fight against you collectively. But know that Allah is with those who are Al-Muttaqun (the pious).” (9:36)
“Jihad (holy fighting in Allah’s Cause) is ordained for you (Muslims) though you dislike it, and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know.” (2:216)
“March forth, whether you are light (being healthy, young and wealthy) or heavy (being ill, old and poor), and strive hard with your wealth and your lives in the Cause of Allah” (9:41)
“Verily, Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their properties for (the price) that theirs shall be the Jannah. They fight in Allah’s Cause, so they kill (others) and are killed. It is a promise in truth which is binding on Him in the Taurat (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel) and the Qur’an. And who is truer to his covenant than Allah? Then rejoice in the bargain which you have concluded. That is the supreme success.” (9:111)
“Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home), except those who are disabled (by injury or are blind or lame), and those who strive hard and fight in the Cause of Allah with their wealth and their lives. Allah has preferred in grades those who strive hard and fight with their wealth and their lives above those who sit (at home). Unto each, Allah has promised good (Jannah), but Allah has preferred those who strive hard and fight, above those who sit (at home) by a huge reward. Degrees of (higher) grades from Him, and forgiveness and mercy. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (4:95, 96)
“O you who believe! Shall I guide you to a trade that will save you from a painful torment? That you believe in Allah and His Messenger (Muhammad (PBUH)), and that you strive hard and fight in the Cause of Allah with your wealth and your lives: that will be better for you, if you but know! (If you do so) He will forgive you your sins, and admit you into Gardens under which rivers flow, and pleasant dwellings in `Adn (Eden) Jannah; that is indeed the great success. And also (He will give you) another (blessing) which you love: help from Allah (against your enemies) and a near victory. And give glad tidings (O Muhammad (PBUH)) to the believers.” (61:10-13)
The Qur’anic Ayat relating to the subject under study are many. The Ahadith are also many; these include the following:
1285. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) was asked, “Which deed is the best?” He (PBUH) replied, “Faith in Allah and His Messenger.” He (PBUH) was asked, “What is next?” He (PBUH) replied, “Jihad (holy fighting) in the Cause of Allah.” Then he was asked: “What is after that (in goodness)?” He (PBUH) replied, “Hajj Mabrur (which is accepted by Allah).”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned. See Hadith No. 1274. Different acts have been regarded more meritorious in different Ahadith. For this reason, some scholars have performed the justification that the word mun “whoever” is the keynote in such cases. That is, such and such acts come in the category of eminent acts or they have been mentioned with reference to circumstances and time or place. For instance, at certain times or at certain places or for certain persons, performing Salat in the early prescribed hours is more meritorious, or Hajj through representative or Jihad is more meritorious, etc.
Some scholars are of the opinion that the eminence of different acts has been stressed keeping the person addressed in view.
Linguistically, the word “Hajj” means `journey to a place one respects’. Technically, it means `journey to Makkah in order to perform the pilgrimage rites.’ The word “Mabrur” is from “Birr” meaning obedience, piety, but it signifies here an act which is done sincerely without committing a sin.
1286. Ibn Mas`ud (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I asked the Messenger of Allah (PBUH): “Which action is dearest to Allah?” He (PBUH) replied, “Performing As-Salat (the prayer) at its earliest fixed time.” I asked, “What is next (in goodness)?” He (PBUH) said, “Kindness towards parents.” I asked, “What is next (in goodness)?” He (PBUH) said, “To participate in Jihad in the Cause of Allah.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned. See Commentary on Hadith No. 314. Imam Al-Qurtubi says that the Prophet (PBUH) mentioned these three deeds in particular because they are a sign of other acts of obedience: He who does not perform a Salat at its prescribed time, without a valid reason, and delays it beyond its time fully knowing that it is a light but highly rewarding work, is bound to neglect the other good deeds. One who does not treat his parents nicely, in spite of the fact that he knows that they have the greatest rights over him, is bound to treat others in a less proper manner. One who does not wage Jihad against the infidels, although he is fully aware that they are avowed enemies of Islam, he is bound to give up fighting against people who are guilty of sins and impious acts.
1287. Abu Dharr (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) was asked: “Which deed is the best?” He (PBUH) replied, “Faith in Allah and Jihad (fighting, struggle) in the Cause of Allah.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
1288. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Verily! Setting out in the early morning or in the evening in order to fight in Allah’s way is better than the world and what it contains.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: The Hadith points out the superiority of fighting in the way of Allah. The moment one fights for Allah’s sake, be it in the early morning or the evening, is better than the world and all that is in it. The reason is that the world as well as what it possesses is transitory while the Hereafter is everlasting and eternal. Can anything that is temporary be a match for what is eternal?
1289. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A man came to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and said, “Who is the best among men?” He (PBUH) replied, “A believer who strives in the way of Allah with his wealth and life.” The man asked again, “Who is next to him (in excellence)?” He (PBUH) said, “Next to him is a man who is engaged in worshipping his Rubb in a mountain valley, leaving the people secure from his mischief.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned. See Commentary on Hadith No. 598. It brings into focus the excellence of fighting Jihad with one’s wealth and life for the sake of Allah.
1290. Sahl bin Sa`d (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Observing Ribat (e.g., guarding the Islamic frontier for the sake of Allah) for a single day is far better than the world and all that it contains. A place in Jannah as small as the whip of your horse is far better than the world and all that it contains. An endeavour (fighting) in the Cause of Allah in the evening or in the morning is far better than the world and all that it contains.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith highlights the excellence of observing Ribat and fighting in the way of Allah. It also highlights the insignificance of this world and the great reward in the Hereafter which can be attained through Jihad.
1291. Salman (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) as saying, “Observing Ribat in the way of Allah for a day and a night is far better than observing Saum (fasting) for a whole month and standing in Salat (prayer) in all its nights. If a person dies (while performing this duty), he will go on receiving his reward for his meritorious deeds perpetually, and he will be saved from Al-Fattan.”
Commentary: Good deeds of a Muslim who dies or is martyred on the frontier will perpetuate and will be credited to his account till the Day of Resurrection; and like all other martyrs, sustenance will be provided to him even after his death. As Allah says: `Think not of those as dead who are killed in the way of Allah. Nay, they are alive, with their Rubb, and they have provision.” (3:169)
“Al-Fattan” here means the interrogation in the grave which the two angels Munkir and Nakir will conduct. Some religious scholars said that observing Ribat serves the purpose of safeguarding religion and Islamic territories, while fastings benefit only the person who performs it. It is a great trial which everyone has to pass through. But one who is a Mu’min (righteous Muslim) goes through it easily by the Grace of Allah, and he will answer all the questions correctly.
1292. Fadalah bin `Ubaid (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The actions of every dead person come to a halt with his death except the one who is on the frontier in Allah’s way (i.e., observing Ribat). This latter’s deeds will be made to go on increasing for him till the Day of Resurrection, and he will be secure from the trials in the grave.”
[Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].
Commentary: This Hadith also mentions the merits of Jihad, especially of defending the frontiers (i.e., Ribat), as is mentioned in the preceding Ahadith.
1293. `Uthman (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying: “Spending a day on the frontier in Allah’s way is better than one thousand days in any other place.”
1294. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Allah guarantees that he who goes out to fight in His way believing in Him and affirming the truth of His Messenger, will either be admitted to Jannah or will be brought back to his home (safely) from where he has set out, with whatever reward or share of booty he may have gained. By Him in Whose Hand Muhammad’s soul is, if a person is wounded in the way of Allah, he will come on the Day of Resurrection with his wound in the same condition as it was on the day when he received it; its colour will be the colour of blood but its smell will be the smell of musk. By Him in Whose Hand Muhammad’s soul is, if it were not to be too hard upon the Muslims, I would not lag behind any expedition to fight in the Cause of Allah, but I have neither abundant means to provide them conveyance (horses) nor all other Muslims have it, and it will be hard on them to remain behind when I go forth (for Jihad). By Him in Whose Hand Muhammad’s soul is, I love to fight in the way of Allah and get killed, to fight again and get killed and to fight again and get killed.”
1. Besides the merit of Jihad, this Hadith mentions the distinction of that Mu’min (righteous Muslim) who is wounded on the battlefield. It tells us that he will be so resurrected on the Day of Resurrection as if he was wounded on that day. Blood will be dripping from his body which will be emitting the fragrance of musk. This condition will show the distinction and majesty of the Mujahid (warrior in the way of Allah) on the Day of Judgement.
2. It also mentions the kindness and mercy which the Prophet (PBUH) cherished for his Ummah.
3. It also mentions the Prophet’s passion for Jihad which is evident from the repeated expression of his desire for martyrdom – in fact an endless series of life for performing it again and again for the sake of Allah. A similar desire is also made by other martyrs. They pray to Allah that they be restored to life so that they can lay down their life again and again for His sake.
1295. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Whoever is wounded while fighting in the way of Allah, will come on the Day of Resurrection with blood oozing from his wound having the colour of blood but with the fragrance of musk.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
1296. Muadh (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Jannah becomes incumbent for a Muslim who fights for the Cause of Allah for a period as long as the time between two consecutive turns of milking a she-camel. He who receives a wound or a bruise in the Cause of Allah will appear on the Day of Resurrection as fresh as possible, its colour will be the colour of saffron and its fragrance will be that of musk.”
[At-Tirmidhi and Abu Dawud].
Commentary: “Fawaq” is the period that intervenes between two consecutive turns of milking a she-camel. It is a very short interval and is an allusion to a very short period that one may spend in Jihad. Even Jihad for such a short time is so meritorious that his entitlement to Jannah is ensured by it, provided the Mujahid is sincere in his intention and his past conduct is free from major sins and encroachment on the rights of others.
1297. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: One of the Prophet’s Companions came upon a valley containing a rivulet of fresh water and was delighted by it. He reflected: `I wish to withdraw from people and settle in this valley; but I won’t do so without the permission of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH).’ This was mentioned to the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and he said (to the man), “Do not do that, for when any of you remains in Allah’s way, it is better for him than performing Salat (prayer) in his house for seventy years. Do you not wish that Allah should forgive you and admit you to Jannah? Fight in Allah’s way, for he who fights in Allah’s Cause as long as the time between two consecutive turns of milking a she-camel, will be surely admitted to Jannah.”
Commentary: This Hadith brings out two important points:
First, Jihad is far superior than voluntary Salat. This is perfectly true because the benefit of Salat is restricted to the one who performs it while the benefits of Jihad reach a vast number of people because it is to safeguard the religion, raise the flag of Islam high and safeguard the Islamic territories. But it is only possible when there is a general proclamation for Jihad and there is such a severe fight that it is not permissible for anyone to stay behind; that is to say, it becomes obligatory. In the ordinary circumstances, when a general proclamation for Jihad is not made, the voluntary Salat, is the best of all acts of worship. Second, the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) did not do anything without the permission of the Prophet (PBUH).
1298. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) was asked: “What other good deed could be an equivalent of Jihad in the way of Allah?” He (PBUH) replied, “You do not have the strength to do it.” (The narrator said:) The question was repeated twice or thrice, but every time he (PBUH) answered, “You do not have the strength to do it.” Then he (PBUH) said, “One who goes out for Jihad in the Cause of Allah is like a person who observes Saum (fasting), stands in Salat (prayer) constantly, recites the Ayat of the Qur’an and does not exhibit any lassitude in fasting and prayer until the participant of Jihad in the way of Allah returns.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: “Alqanit” signifies one who makes recitation of the Ayat of the Noble Qur’an with the fear of Allah and humility, or is submissive and obedient to the Commands of Allah. The example cited here means that so long a Mujahid is engaged in Jihad, he is like a person who keeps himself occupied in Salat at night and observes Saum in the day time. The action of such a person can be equal in reward to the conduct of a Mujahid. Thus, in special situations Jihad is the most meritorious act. A worshipper cannot attain that reward for his worship which a Mujahid achieves in Jihad.
1299. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The best life is that of the man who holds his horse’s rein in Allah’s way and flies on its back to the places from whence he hears a war cry or the clatter of arms, seeking martyrdom or slaughter on the battlefield; or that of a person who goes to stay on the top of the hill or in a valley, and there he performs Salat (prayer), pays the Zakat and worships his Rubb till death overtakes him. He has no concern with the affairs of anyone except the doing of good.”
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned. See Commentary on Hadith No. 609. Besides highlighting the distinction of the Mujahid, this Hadith mentions the excellence of that person who leaves the cities when they are plagued with mischief and retreats to the valleys or hills and protects his Faith by flock-keeping and devotes himself to the obedience of Allah, adherence to His Commands and His worship. One of his outstanding qualities is that he does what is beneficial to the people and he does nothing which causes harm to anyone.
1300. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “In Jannah there are a hundred grades which Allah has prepared for those who fight in His Cause; and the distance between any two of those grades is like the distance between the heaven and the earth.”
Commentary: This Hadith also tells us about the distinction of Mujahid in the Hereafter and their elevation to high position.
1301. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “If anyone is pleased with Allah as his Rubb, with Islam as his religion and with Muhammad (PBUH) as (Allah’s) Messenger, surely, he will be entitled to enter Jannah.” Abu Sa`id was delighted with this and requested the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) to repeat it. He (PBUH) repeated it again and then said, “There is also another act by which Allah will elevate the position of a (pious believing) slave in Jannah to a grade one hundred degrees higher. And the distance between any two grades is equal to the distance between heaven and earth.” He asked the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) what it was and he ((PBUH)) replied, “Jihad in the way of Allah; Jihad in the way of Allah.”
Commentary: We learn from this Hadith that the people who will be sent to Jannah will be ranked there differently according to this merits of their deeds. There will be innumerable positions in Jannah and Mujahid will have a hundred of them.
1302. Abu Bakr bin Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari reported: I heard my father saying in the presence of the enemy: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The gates of Jannah are under the shades of the swords.” A man with a shaggy appearance got up and said, “O Abu Musa! Did you hear the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) say that in person?” Abu Musa replied in the affirmative; so he returned to his companions and said: “I tender you farewell greetings.” Then he broke the scabbard of his sword and threw it away. He rushed towards the enemy with his sword and fought with it till he was martyred.
Commentary: Besides highlighting the distinction of Jihad, this Hadith tells us about the Companions’ passion for Jihad and ardent love for Allah and His Prophet (PBUH). It also tells about their firm faith in what was ordained by Allah and His Prophet (PBUH). In fact, it was this certitude which inclined them more to the Hereafter rather than this world.
1303. Abu `Abs `Abdur-Rahman bin Jabr (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “It will not happen that the feet soiled with dust while (doing Jihad) in the way of Allah, will be touched by the fire (of Hell).”
Commentary: “Feet soiled with dust” means participation in Jihad. That is to say, a person takes part in Jihad and yet goes to Hell is altogether impossible. What it signifies is that Jihad is a means of expiation of sins and that it guarantees the admission into Jannah, provided he is not guilty of major sins. This exception is confirmed by other Ahadith.
1304. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “No one who weeps out of Fear of Allah will enter Hell until milk recedes to the udder, and the dust endured while striving in the Cause of Allah and the smoke of Hell will never subsist together.”
Commentary: This Hadith makes use of a metaphor to stress the impossible. One who weeps for Fear of Allah and one who is covered with the dust of the battlefield in the course of Jihad, will in no case enter Hell until the milk drawn from udder goes back to it. The dust of the battlefield of Jihad and the smoke of Hell cannot combine at one place. The mixing of the two is utterly impossible. However, this will apply only if one’s `Aqeedah is correct and one’s intention is correct (i.e., one participates in Jihad with the intention to please Allah Alone)
1305. Ibn `Abbas (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “Two eyes will never be touched by the fire of Hell; an eye which weeps out of Fear of Allah and an eye which spends the night in guarding in the Cause of Allah .”
Commentary: This Hadith tells us about the eminence of the person who weeps out of Fear of Allah and also brings into prominence the distinction of the Mujahid who keeps a vigil during Jihad.
1306. Zaid bin Khalid (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who equips a Ghazi(fighter) in the way of Allah is as if he has taken part in the fighting himself; and he who looks after the dependants of a Ghazi in his absence, is as if he has taken part in the fighting himself.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith tells us about the mutual help of the Muslims and the reward of their cooperation with one another. To provide the needs of Jihad of a Mujahid and to arrange for the protection, supervision and requirements of the family of a Mujahid during his absence from home due to Jihad is as good as participation in Jihad. Those who help the Mujahid in this manner will have the same reward to which the Mujahid is entitled.
1307. Abu Umamah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The best of charities is to provide canopy in the Cause of Allah, to pay wages to a servant in the way of Allah, and to provide a camel in the way of Allah (to be used by a Mujahid).”
Commentary: Here, the word canopy (tent) stands for a covered canopy tent which can provide a Mujahid with shade for peace and comfort, and “pay wages” means to provide a servant who can help and serve him. “Fahl” literally means camel and “Taruqah” is that young she-camel which can bear offspring, that is a young healthy she-camel which can be of service to the Mujahid. What all this means is that such work is highly meritorious which can provide a Mujahid with comfort, power and food. Allah holds promise of a rich reward for it.
1308. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A young man from the Aslam tribe said: “O Messenger of Allah! I would very much like to fight in the way of Allah but I do not have anything with which to equip myself for fighting.” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Go to so-and-so, for he had equipped himself (for fighting) but he fell ill.” So, he (the young man) went to him and said: “The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) sends you his greetings and says that you should hand over to me the equipment that you have procured.” The man said to his wife: “Give him the equipment which I have collected for myself and do not withhold anything from him. By Allah! Allah won’t bless something you withheld (in this respect).”
Commentary: This Hadith also stresses the fact that if a person is unable to take part in Jihad due to illness, for example, he should then provide such material to a Mujahid which is helpful for him in Jihad. If he does so, he will be eligible to the same reward which is due on Jihad. This would also be a source of increase and growth in his possessions. On the basis of this argument it has been stated that one should always intend to expend his possession on something noble. He who does not get the opportunity to expend it on what he had intended should direct that material towards some other noble purpose.
1309. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) sent an expedition to Banu Lahyan and said, “One man from every two should join the fighting force, and the reward will be shared amongst them equally.”
Another narration in Muslim is: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Let one of every two men go forth”, and added: “Whoever stays behind (and looks well after the family and the property of those who have joined the expedition) will get half the reward of the warrior.”
Commentary: “The reward will be shared amongst them equally” or “will get half the reward” signifies one and the same thing. Some people might mistakenly think that these two narrations of Sahih Muslim apparently contradict each other because they imply that he who takes part in Jihad and he who provides material to a Mujahid or looks after the family of a Mujahid in his absence from home would get equal reward. For this reason, some people have taken the word “half” as superfluous thinking that some narrator has added it in the text on his own. But Al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar is of the opinion that after the acceptance of the credibility of this Hadith and the proofs furnished in this regard, it is unfair to ascribe addition of any word to the narrator. Its correct interpretation seems to be that when the total reward of it will be evenly distributed between the two, each of them will get the same amount of reward. Hence there is no contradiction in these two Ahadith.
This Hadith also tells us that Jihad is not an express obligation; and if one of the two persons takes part in Jihad, it will suffice for the other also. What can be inferred from this is that the others should take part in Jihad in such a manner that those who have wealth, should arrange for the military requirements of the Mujahidun and look after their families, and in case any Mujahid is martyred, they should provide financial help to his family if it does not have sufficient means for a respectable living. Similarly, people in other walks of life should also take part in Jihad in every possible manner.
1310. Al-Bara (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A man equipped with arms came to the Prophet (PBUH) and asked: “O Messenger of Allah! Should I go and fight or should I embrace Islam first?” He (PBUH) replied, “Enter in the fold of Islam and then fight.” He embraced Islam and fought until he was killed. Thereupon the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He accepted Islam for a short time but was rewarded much.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: Sometimes Almighty Allah awards with His Grace and Mercy abundant reward even on small virtues. This Hadith also makes it absolutely clear that a person becomes eligible for reward for his good deeds after embracing the Faith. In the absence of Faith no virtue is acceptable to Allah.
1311. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “No one who has entered Jannah will desire to return to this world even if he should be given all that the world contains, except a martyr. For he will yearn that he should return to the world and be killed ten times on account of the dignity that he will experience by virtue of his martyrdom.”
Another narration is: “On account of the excellence and distinction, he will experience as a result of martyrdom.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: The distinction and high status which a martyr will get by virtue of his martyrdom will be such that he will desire to return to the world again and again to lay down his life for the sake of Allah. Except for the martyr, nobody else from the people in Jannah will desire to return to this world for any worldly thing.
1312. `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Allah forgives every sin of a martyr, except his debt.”
Another narration in Muslim is: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Being martyred in the Cause of Allah expiates for everything, except debt.”
Commentary: We learn from this Hadith that the rights of people will not be forgiven even by martyrdom, nor would major sins be pardoned. For the forgiveness of major sins one has to make sincere repentance.
1313. Abu Qatadah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) stood up among his Companions and said, “Jihad in the way of Allah and belief in Allah (with all His Attributes) are the most meritorious of actions.” A man stood up and said: “O Messenger of Allah! Inform me if I am killed in the way of Allah, will my sins be blotted out?” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Yes, in case you are killed in the way of Allah and you remained patient, hopeful of reward, and advancing forward without retracing back (i.e., while fighting).” Then he said, “What was your question?” He inquired again: “Inform me, if I am killed in the way of Allah, will all my sins be blotted out?” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) replied, “If you remained patient, hopeful of reward and always fought without turning your back upon enemy, everything, except debt, will be forgiven. Jibril has told me this.”
Commentary: This Hadith tells us about the great merit and reward of martyrdom that it makes up for the shortcomings of the martyrs. This is, however, subject to four conditions which have been mentioned in the Hadith.
The rights of people, such as debt, will not be forgiven. Similarly, major sins will not be pardoned without sincere repentance. Some scholars are of the opinion that debt here means such debt which one does not pay in spite of the fact that he is able to pay it. Such debts which a debtor intends to pay but their payment has been delayed due to the lack of means for it and he dies before paying them, will be hopefully forgiven by the Grace and Mercy of Allah. There are other Ahadith which lend support to this view.
1314. Jabir (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A man asked the Messenger of Allah (PBUH): “Tell me where I will be if I am killed while fighting in the way of Allah?” He (PBUH) replied, “In Jannah.” The man threw away the few dates which he had in his hand, jumped into the battlefield and fought on till he was killed.
Commentary: Sincere intention is bound to be rewarded by Jannah. Such people can be safely given the glad tidings of Jannah.
1315. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) and his Companions reached Badr before the polytheists, and when they arrived, he (PBUH) directed: “Let no one of you advance ahead of me.” When the polytheists came near, the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Now stand up and proceed towards Jannah which is as wide as are the heavens and the earth.” `Umair bin Al-Humam (May Allah be pleased with him) asked: “Is Jannah as wide as are the heaven and the earth?” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) replied in the affirmative. `Umair remarked: “Great!” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) asked him what had urged him to say so. He replied: “Nothing, O Messenger of Allah! But hope that I might become one of the inhabitants of Jannah.” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “You will definitely be among them.” `Umair then took some dates out of his quiver and began to eat them, but after a short time he said: “If I survive till I eat my dates, it will mean a long life.” So he threw away the dates which he had with him and then fought with the enemy till he was killed.
Commentary: This Hadith brings out the following three points:
1. The importance of the obedience of the leader. Soldiers should wait for the orders of their commander, and should not take any step without his orders.
2. In order to infuse the true spirit of Jihad among the soldiers, they should be told and reminded about the blessings of Jannah so that they fight with enthusiasm and valour for attaining it.
3. The Hadith manifests the love of the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) for the Hereafter which overwhelmed their interests in the attractions of the life of the world.
1316. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Some people came to the Prophet (PBUH) and said to him: “Send with us some men who may teach us the Qur’an and the Sunnah.” He (PBUH) sent seventy men from the Ansar. They were called Al-Qurra` (the reciters) and among them was my maternal uncle, Haram. They used to recite the Qur’an, ponder over its meaning and learn (its wisdom) at night. In the day, they used to bring water and pour it in pitchers in the mosque, then they would collect wood and sell it; and with the sale proceeds, they would buy food for the people of As-Suffah and the needy. The Prophet (PBUH) sent the reciters with these people but these (treacherous people) fell upon them and killed them before they reached their destination. (While dying) they supplicated: “O Allah convey from us the news to our Prophet that we have met You (in a way), that we are pleased with You and You are pleased with us.” (The narrator said:) A man attacked Haram from behind and smote him with a spear which pierced him. Whereupon Haram said: “By the Rubb of Ka`bah, I have met with success. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said to his Companions, “Your brethren have been slain and they were saying: “O Allah! Convey from us to our Prophet the news that we have met You (in a way) that we are pleased with You and You are pleased with us.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith mentions the following three points:
1. Through conspiracy infidels took with them seventy Ansari Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) , who were distinguished for studying and teaching the Noble Qur’an, and martyred them in their region. This tragic incident goes to prove that the Prophet (PBUH) did not have the knowledge of the Unseen. Had he possessed this knowledge, he would not have sent his Companions with the infidels. When the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) realized that they were trapped and there was no chance of their survival, they prayed to Allah to convey their message to the Prophet (PBUH). Their prayer was answered by Allah Who conveyed their message by means of Wahy (Revelation) to the Prophet (PBUH). On learning it through Wahy, he (PBUH) informed this tragic incident to his Companions.
2. “As-Suffah” is a terrace in which people stayed, they had neither any permanent source of income nor any free public kitchen nor was there any arrangement for the supply of their food from individuals. They depended entirely on the Grace of Allah.
Every now and then they received some Sadaqah or gift and they all shared it. Some of them would collect firewood and through its sale, raised some money to purchase food for themselves and their Companions.
3. The task of invitation to Islam and dissemination of its teachings is an arduous one. People who undertake this task have to face bitter criticism from their friends and foes, and one has sometimes to lose one’s life in this mission. But this is a mission of the Prophets and it should be undertaken by the savants as they are truly worthy of it.
1317. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: My uncle Anas bin An-Nadr (May Allah be pleased with him) was absent from the battle of Badr. He said: “O Messenger of Allah! I was absent from the first battle you fought against the pagans. (By Allah!) if Allah gives me a chance to fight against the pagans, no doubt, Allah will see how (bravely) I will fight.” On the Day of Uhud, when the Muslims turned their backs and fled, he said, “O Allah! I apologize to You for what these (i.e., his companions) have done, and I denounce what these (i.e., the pagans) have done.” Then he advanced and Sa`d bin Mu’adh met him. He said: “O Sa`d bin Mu’adh! By the Rubb of An-Nadr, Jannah! I am smelling its aroma coming from before (the mountain of) Uhud,” Later on, Sa`d said: “O Messenger of Allah! I cannot achieve or do what he (i.e., Anas bin An-Nadr) did. We found more than eighty wounds by swords, spears and arrows on his body. We found him dead and his body was mutilated so badly that none except his sister could recognise him by his finger.” We used to think that the following Ayah was revealed concerning him and other men of his sort: “Among the believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah (i.e., they have gone out for Jihad, and showed not their backs to the disbelievers), of them some have fulfilled their obligations (i.e., have been martyred).” (33:23).
Commentary: This Hadith has been mentioned earlier. It was clarified there by Imam An-Nawawi that the word “Layarayann-Allahu” has been mentioned in two forms. The translation given above accords with its first form. In its second form, it means “Allah will manifest to the people what I will do”. Through these words Anas bin Nadr expressed, in very cautious words, his determination to fight chivalrously but refrained from making any claim or pretension. Here, we have a lesson that if one intends to do a good deed, he should not make any tall claims about it but do it with his utmost effort when it is time to do it. Almighty Allah will certainly make it manifest to the people. On the contrary, if one does it for name and fame, the deed will go waste because then it will be suffused with hypocrisy rather than sincerity. For further notes please see the Commentary on Hadith No. 109.
1318. Samurah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Last night two men (angels) came to me (in a dream) and made me ascend a tree and then admitted me into a nice and excellent house, the like of which I have never seen before. One of them said: `This house is the house of martyrs’.”
Commentary: The Prophet (PBUH) was shown in the dream the high status of martyrs. What he observed in the dreams was true because the dreams of the Prophets are true.
The two men who appeared in his dream were the angels, Jibril (Gabriel) and Mika’il. On the behest of Almighty Allah, angels can take the form of men.
1319. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Umm Ar-Rubaiy`i bint Al-Bara’, who was the mother of Harithah bin Suraqah, came to the Prophet (PBUH) and said: “O Messenger of Allah! Will you not tell me about Harithah? (He was killed in the battle of Badr). If he is in Jannah I shall show endurance, but if he has met another fate, I may exert myself in weeping for him.” He (PBUH) replied, “O mother of Harithah, in in the gardens of Jannah there are many ranks, and your son has attained Al-Firdaus, the highest.”
Commentary: Jannat-ul-Firdaus is the highest portion of Jannah. The allocation of this portion to the martyrs is a proof that Jihad is very much liked by Allah. It occurs in Ahadith that when someone prays to Allah, he should always pray for Jannat-ul-Firdaus.
1320. Jabir bin `Abdullah (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The dead body of my father, who was mutilated by the enemy, was brought and placed before the Prophet (PBUH). I got up to uncover his face but the people stopped me, and the Prophet (PBUH) said, “The angels continue to cover him with their wings.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: Many of the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) were treated by the infidels in the battle of Uhud in a beastly manner out of sheer spite and vengeance. But Islam has strictly forbidden its followers from doing any such thing to its enemies. This Hadith mentions the distinction of `Abdullah which he received by virtue of his martyrdom. He was martyred in the battle of Uhud and his dead body was badly mutilated by the enemies. The Hadith also mentions the honour which martyrs receive from the angels that surround their bodies with their wings
1321. Sahl bin Hunaif (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who supplicates Allah sincerely for martyrdom, Allah will elevate him to the station of the martyrs, even if he dies on his bed.”
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned. See the Commentary on Hadith No. 57.
1322. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who supplicates sincerely for martyrdom, it will be granted to him even though he is not killed on the battlefield.”
Commentary: This Hadith tells us the benefit and reward of good intention. It induces one to cherish good intentions and wish for noble deeds. Even if one is not able to fulfill some of them, he will get their reward. For this reason, every Muslim should wish for martyrdom so that he can attain this distinction.
1323. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The martyr experiences no more pain in being slain than one of you experiences from the stinging of an ant.”
Commentary: This Hadith tells us how convenient martyrdom has been made by Allah. One who is martyred, feels as much pain in martyrdom as a person ordinarily feels with the sting of an ant.
1324. `Abdullah bin Abu Aufa (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: On one occasion the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) was confronting the enemy. He waited until the sun had declined. Then he stood up to address the people and said, “O people! Do not wish for an encounter with the enemy. Pray to Allah to grant you safety; (but) when you encounter them, show patience, and know that Jannah is under the shades of the swords.” Then he (PBUH) said: “Allahumma munzilal-kitab, wa mujriyas-sahab, wa hazimal-Ahzab, ihzimhum wansurna alaihim (O Allah, Revealer of the Book, Disperser of the clouds, Defeater of the Confederates, put our enemy to rout and support us against them).”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
1. This Hadith has already been mentioned, and we learn from it that it is better to start war in the afternoon because this was the practice of the Prophet (PBUH).
2. The desire for war is prohibited, but when war becomes inevitable, one should not show his back to the enemy; rather, one should fight to the best of his ability and be steadfast in it.
3. Along with steadfastness and patience in fighting, one should also pray for victory because all powers lie with Allah and no one can gain victory without His Will.
The Hadith also mentions a supplication which one should make when he encounters the enemy.
1325. Sahl bin Sa`d (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Supplications at two times are never turned down (or said, “Are seldom turned down”), a supplication after the Adhan has been proclaimed, and a supplication during the battle combating the enemy.”
1326. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Whenever the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) set out to participate in Jihad, he would supplicate: “Allahumma Anta `adudi wa nasiri, bika ahulu, wa bika asulu, wa bika uqatilu (O Allah, You are my Supporter and my Helper. With Your help I get strength, and with Your help I bounce upon the enemy and defeat it, and with Your help I fight).”
[Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].
Commentary: Along with the physical resources for war, one should also pray for victory, and for that, it is essential that one submits to Allah, remembers Him and seeks His Help. Prayer is a great source of strength and support for a Muslim and he must make full use of it. The Hadith also teaches us what to say when one sets out for Jihad.
1327. Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: When the Prophet (PBUH) had any fear of an enemy, he used to supplicate: “Allahumma inna naj`aluka fi nuhurihim, wa na`udhu bika min shururihim (O Allah! We put You in front of them, and we seek refuge in You from their evils).”
[Ahmad and Abu Dawud].
Commentary: When one is gripped with fear, he should recite the prayer quoted in the text of this Hadith. Since Allah is the One Who saves from an enemy, one should therefore, pray to Him and beseech His Help.
1328. Ibn `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “There is goodness in the forelocks of horses till the Day of Resurrection.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
Commentary: The “Khair”, auspiciousness attributed to horses in the Hadith is for those horses which are employed in Jihad, because what Khair, in fact, signifies is return and reward, but war booty is also included in it. From this angle, the breeding of horses is a highly commendable act. The importance of horses for war in the past, needs no elucidation. Even in the present-day world, when the style of war has altogether changed and numerous dangerous weapons have been invented, horses are still playing an important role in the war.
1329. `Urwah Al-Bariqi (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Goodness is tied to the foreheads of horses until the Day of Resurrection, i.e., reward (in the Hereafter) and spoils.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: Return and reward is a belated gain while booty is an immediate gain.
1330. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who keeps a horse for Jihad purposes, having faith in Allah and relying on His Promise, will find that its fodder, drink, droppings and urine will all be credited to him in his Scales on the Day of Resurrection.”
Commentary: Thus, this Hadith performs an inducement for horse-breeding for the purpose of Jihad. It is a highly rewarding act because one will be rewarded for whatever he would spend on them and whatever is excreted or discharged by them.
1331. Abu Mas`ud (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A man came to the Prophet (PBUH) with a she-camel wearing a nose-string and said: “This is (a gift) in the Cause of Allah.” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) replied, “You will have in return for it on the Day of Resurrection seven hundred she-camels and every one of them will be wearing a nose-string.”
Commentary: This Hadith mentions the reward which will be given on the Day of Resurrection on virtues. Every virtue will be given at least a ten-fold reward but it will go to the extent of seven hundred times or more. Thus, this Hadith has glad tidings of a reward of seven hundred times of a good action.
1332. `Uqbah bin `Amir Al-Juhani (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying from the pulpit, “Prepare to meet them (the enemy) with as much strength as you can afford. Verily! Strength is in archery, strength is in archery, strength is in archery.”
Commentary: In accordance with the conditions of his times, the Prophet (PBUH) ordained the Muslims to acquire every possible power and keep it ready for war. Elucidating his order on this point, he stated that by power he meant archery and then he repeated this word three times to stress its importance. He did it because the art of archery had fundamental importance in war at that time. In the present-day world, archery has lost its value as it has been replaced by other inventions like tanks, guns, missiles, atom bombs, etc. Similar is the case of devices which are used in air and naval war, and all these military wares have superb importance in modern warfare. In the present-day context, the injunction of the Noble Qur’an to acquire power means manufacturing and possession of all these devices. It is incumbent on the Muslims that they equip themselves with all this material and show no carelessness in this regard. In modern times, Muslims have badly neglected this field with the result that non-Muslims have more knowledge of modern warfare and by dint of that they are dominating the world and making a claim of their supremacy all over the world. Unless Muslims pursue the Qur’anic injunctions on this score and acquire greater or equal or at least similar measure and style of power, as is possessed by the non-Muslims, they will not be able to check the onslaught of their enemies, and to defeat them. It is incumbent upon the Muslims to overpower the might and power of the infidels for the glorification of Islam.
1333. `Uqbah bin `Amir Juhani (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “Lands shall be laid open to you, and Allah will suffice you (against your enemies), but none of you should neglect practicing his skill in archery.”
Commentary: Muslims have been informed through this Hadith that gates of conquest of many regions will be opened on them in future. Almighty Allah will favour them with special help; and because of this help enemies will not be able to cause any harm to them. But it is essential that they should not slack in acquiring the material resources required for war, nor neglect military preparations and exercises. Modern military weapons and new style of warfare have now taken the place of archery, and Muslims should master all of them.
1334. `Uqbah bin `Amir Al-Juhani (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who learnt archery and then neglected it, is not from us.” (Or said,) “He has been guilty of disobedience (to Messenger of Allah).”
Commentary: This Hadith also stresses the importance of the art of archery to the extent that if a Muslim forgets it after learning without a valid reason, he is excluded from the followers of the Prophet (PBUH). Now this exhortation applies with equal force to modern military weapons, and if the present-day Muslims lose their command in handling these weapons, they will be exposed to the consequences of which they have been warned in this Hadith, because their training in this field is essential for upholding the Word of Allah and defending the Muslims. If the Muslims lose proficiency in it after acquiring it, they will be guilty of neglecting a very important Islamic obligation.
1335. `Uqbah bin `Amir Al-Juhani (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “Allah will admit three persons to Jannah for one arrow; the maker who has a good motive in making it, the one who shoots it, and the one who hands it up for shooting. So shoot and ride, but I like your shooting (more) than your riding. He who gives up archery after becoming adept in it for lack of interest, neglects a (great) blessing.” (Or said,) “One who does so is ungrateful.”
Commentary: This Hadith also highlights the importance and merit of preparation for war against the enemy. Arrow has been used here as a symbol. In modern times, a Muslim who manufactures war weapons with the intention that he will use them for Jihad, will get a reward for it along with all those who in some way co-operate with him in manufacturing them. Instead of archery and horse-riding, Muslims should now get the training of handling modern military weapons and they should beware of forgetting it because if they forget after learning it, the warning contained in this Hadith will also apply to them.
1336. Salamah bin Al-Akwa (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) happened to pass by a group of people who were having a shooting match. (Upon seeing them, he (PBUH)) said, “Shoot, O sons of (Prophet) Isma`il, for your father was an archer.”
Commentary: Arabs are also called Banu Isma`il because they are the descendants of Prophet Ibrahim’s son, Isma`il. This is the reason that Prophet Ibrahim is reckoned an ancestor of the Prophet (PBUH) for his being his descendant.
1337. `Amr bin `Abasah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying: “He who shoots an arrow for the sake of Allah, will have a reward equal to the emancipation of a slave.”
[Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].
1338. Abu Yahya Khuraim bin Fatik (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who makes a contribution in Allah’s way, will have his reward seven hundred times recorded to his credit.”
1339. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Every slave of Allah who observes Saum (fasting) for a day in the Cause of Allah, Allah will keep his face from Hell-fire at a distance of seventy years.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned. The above mentioned Ahadith give the glad tidings to those who spend in the way of Allah and strive in His Cause. This means that every endeavour in the Jihad has truthful reward.
1340. Abu Umamah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “He who observes Saum (fasting) for a day in the Cause of Allah, Allah will keep his face from Hell-fire at a distance equivalent to that between heaven and the earth.”
1341. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “He who dies without having fought in the Cause of Allah or without having thought of doing so, will die with one characteristic of hypocrisy in him.”
Commentary: It is a different matter that one may not get a chance to take part in Jihad, but it would be a hypocritical attitude if one does not ever think that if an opportunity ever comes in his way, he will certainly go for Jihad in the way of Allah against the infidels. The reason to that is that, to stay back at home at the time of Jihad was a habit of the hypocrites. In the light of this, Imam Al-Qurtubi has stated the principle that if one is not capable of doing some virtuous deeds, he should then make a resolve that whenever he will be capable of it, he will do that deed, so that his intention takes the place of his act. He who neither performs a good deed nor aspires for it, has a hypocritical disposition. This is specially true of a Muslim who does not even aspire to take part in Jihad. Such a Muslim develops a resemblance with hypocrites.
1342. Jabir (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: We accompanied the Prophet (PBUH) in an expedition when he (PBUH) said, “Some people have remained behind us in Al-Madinah, and we never cross a valley but they are with us. They share the reward with us because they have been held back by valid excuse.”
In another narration the wordings are: “…by any genuine excuse.”
In another narration the wordings are: “They are your partners in reward.”
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned, and we learn from it that a person who does not have the energy to take part in Jihad, his sincere intention to spend his wealth in the way of Allah and to lay down his life for His sake is enough for him, because by virtue of his intention, he will share the reward of Jihad with the Mujahidun.
1343. Abu Musa (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A bedouin came to the Prophet (PBUH) and said: “O Messenger of Allah! One man fights for booty, another fights to win fame, and the third fights for show off.” Another narration is: “One fights for displaying his valour, another fights out of his family pride.” Another narration is: “One fights out of rage.” He asked: “Which of them is fighting in the Cause of Allah?” The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “The one who fights so that Word of Allah (Islam) be exalted, is the one who fights in the Cause of Allah.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: We learn from this Hadith that one who fights for any worldly interest is not a Mujahid. Only he is a Mujahid who fights for the religion of Allah and to win His Pleasure alone.
1344. `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “A detachment of soldiers, large or small, who fights in the way of Allah, gets its share of booty and returns safe and sound, receives in advance two-thirds of its reward (only one-third remaining to its credit will be received in the Hereafter). And a troop of soldiers, large or small, that returns disappointed and is afflicted by misery, will receive its full reward (in the Hereafter).”
Commentary: This Hadith means that the Mujahidun who return safe and sound from the battlefield and get their share of booty are inferior in reward to those who are martyred or wounded in Jihad and do not get any share from the booty. We have a saying of the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) that “Many of us passed away and were martyred in such a situation that they did not get in this world any share from their reward, but there are many others whose fruits have ripened and they are picking them.”
1345. Abu Umamah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: A man sought permission from the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) to travel in the land. He (PBUH) said to him, “Travel for my people is Jihad in the Cause of Allah, glory be to Him.”
Commentary: This Hadith does not mean that touring the world is prohibited in Islam. What this Hadith really means is that when the situation calls for Jihad then the foremost priority of a Muslim should be Jihad. In such an event his passion for touring the world should yield to the spirit of Jihad against the infidels and then he must with his full force fight against the enemy. Tourism for the fun of it is disliked by Islam. However, if the purpose of touring the world is to witness the Signs of Allah, sad end of heretic communities, realities and secrets of the universe to gain knowledge of Allah’s, creations, then touring is both praiseworthy and desirable, and this reason has been stressed in the Noble Qur’an at many places.
1346. `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “The return from an expedition is an act as meritorious as fighting.”
Commentary: When a Mujahid returns from the battlefield, he gets reward at that also, because there he attends the duties which are devolved on him by his family. Moreover, after his return, he again starts full preparation for going to Jihad again, collects arms for this purpose and recuperates his energy. Thus, so far his intention and readiness are concerned, he is in a state of Jihad even when he is at home and he will be entitled to reward which is due on Jihad.
1347. As-Sa’ib bin Yazid (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: When the Prophet (PBUH) returned from the battle of Tabuk, people went out from Al-Madinah to meet him and I also met him with other children at Thaniyah-tul-Wada`.
Commentary: There is justification for the reception of those who return from Jihad, but it should be without any formality and expense. The fashion now in vogue for reception on such occasions is that people are induced to make illumination, decoration, display fireworks, let off guns and other similar useless things, and national wealth is rashly spent on them. Such things are forbidden by Islam and also go against the interests of the nation and the country. Instead of wasting wealth on such useless things, it should be spent on things which are beneficial to the country and the nation.
1348. Abu Umamah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “He who neither takes part in fighting nor equips a warrior nor looks after his (the warrior’s) family, will be afflicted by severe calamities before the Day of Resurrection.”
Commentary: This Hadith means that one who neither takes part in Jihad nor provides arms to a Mujahid nor looks after the families of the Mujahidun during their absence, is guilty of crimes for which he is punished in this world by Allah. It is, therefore, the duty of the Muslim Ummah that it should in no way neglect the obligation of Jihad and all its requirements; otherwise it will suffer punishment in this world and in the next.
1349. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Fight the polytheists with your wealth, lives and tongues.”
Commentary: This Hadith mentions three categories of Jihad, namely Jihad with wealth, Jihad with one’s life and Jihad by speech. One should make Jihad as is warranted by the situation one is confronted with. That is, where a Muslim is required to sacrifice his life, he must sacrifice his life; where he is required to sacrifice his wealth, he should spend wealth; and where he is required to make Jihad by means of his speech, he should do it by speech. One should not hesitate to spend for the sake of Allah what is required by the situation.
1350. An-Nu`man bin Muqarrin (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I was with the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) when I witnessed that if he did not begin fighting in the early part of the day, he would postpone fighting till the sun had declined, the blowing of the breeze had blown and the victory from Allah had come.
[Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi].
Commentary: We learn from this Hadith that war should either be started early in the morning or in the afternoon when the sun begins to decline. The reason behind this is that a Muslim is fresh in the early morning while the enemy is generally careless. In the latter case, if war is started when sun begins to decline, every kind of movement becomes easy and the help from Allah also descends at that time. This is the significance of starting war at these times.
1351. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Do not wish for an encounter with the enemy. Pray to Allah to grant you safety; (but) when you encounter them, show patience.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith has already been mentioned. See Hadith No. 1325 and its commentary.
1352. Abu Hurairah and Jabir (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “War is deception.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: “Khad`ah” means deception, i.e., employing a strategy which causes misunderstanding to the enemy, and one’s real intent does not become evident to them. This is permissible in Islam in the state of war.
The Ahadith mentioned in this chapter make the importance of Jihad and the reason for so much stress on it abundantly clear. These also show how great a crime it is to ignore it. It is very unfortunate indeed that present-day Muslims are guilty of renouncing Jihad in every part of the world. May Allah help us to overcome this negligence.