The Friday Message – Issue No: 297 - Hijra: A Turning Point

jihrajSalamun alaykum,

Hijra: A turning point:

It was during the current month of Rabi ul Awwal that the Noble Prophet Muhammad SAWW migrated from Makka to Yathrib; later renamed Madina. Based upon Divine instructions this hijra took place during the 13th year since commencement of B'ithat; the prophetic mission

By announcing the message of Tawhid – Unity of God- and Nubuwwat – Prophethood- amongst the aristocratic society of the Quraysh in Makka, the Noble Prophet had set into motion the journey of establishing a community submitting in obedience to the Divine message of Islam. This was a turning point for the new Muslims. They were undergoing a hijra (emigration) from the practices of idol worship to the submission to Allah SWT. This transformation was the hijra of the self- the nafs.

In undertaking the hijra from Makka, the Noble Prophet did not just transfer his residence to seek refuge or take shelter in another city. As soon as he arrived in Yathrib / Madina he commenced the transformation of that city, the society and undertook a process to establish a faithful community. The transformation in society was led by the Prophet himself when he worked in carrying the stones for construction of the Masjidun Nabi. This small, humble building became a powerful structure which served as a focal point for all activities for the community.

For not only was Masjidun Nabi a space for performing prayers and learning (madrasah), it became a platform for establishing a dynamic community.
This had a great impact on the society. The shape of the society was changing where the new Muslims who had renounced disbelief and idol worship were now living, as neighbours, side by side with non-Muslims in the society of people with other faiths and idol worshippers. Undoubtedly the period of life which the Noble Prophet and the budding Muslim community passed among the hard-hearted people of Makka was not without its severe challenges from the Quraysh pagan Arabs.

Notwithstanding the hostile and unwelcome behaviour from their neighbours, the Noble Prophet always exhorted the Muslims to maintain cordiality with their neighbours. In emphasizing this, the Noble Prophet said, "Maintain good relations with your neighbours that you may be (proven to be) a Muslim."
This signifies the maintaining of pleasantness with one's neighbours to be an indicator of one's level of Eiman - submission to Islam. Guided by this commandment the Muslims slowly, but surely had an impact on their neighbours in the society, both in Makkah and Madina.

Having entered the 1439th year since the hijra, our situation today as Muslims living in a minority amongst people of other faiths and no faiths is no different to the early Muslim community who undertook the hijra.

Like other communities, we too have undertaken the process of migration for various reasons. The objectives for this translocation range from pursuit of education, refuge from violence, tyranny, freedom to practice one's faith, seeking employment, economic gain or in one way or the other to have a better way of living. The net result of this process of migration is that a transformation in one's life is taking place.

The question to ask is how successful is the hijra of the nafs? The success of transformation of nafs is a reflection of one's level of eiman.

How does one interact with the wider community in different zones such as at home, work place, shopping malls, on the roads and other instances?
How committed has one become to live devotedly as a Muslim? What impact as a Muslim does one have on their neighbours in the wider community?

Wa ma tawfiqi illa billah

Fazle Abbas Datoo
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Resident Alim
Wessex Shia Ithna Asheri Jamaat


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