Hadith ~ Your weak ones

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Mus’ab bin Sa’d bin Abu Waqqas (MAPH) reported: Sa’d considered himself better than his inferiors, so the Prophet (SAWS) said to him: “You are given help and provision because of your weak ones”. (Al-Bukhari)

Abu-Darda (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (SAWS) said: “Seek among your weak ones, for you are given provision and help only because of the weak amongst you.” (Abu Dawud).

Commentary: These Hadiths exhorts the resourceful people not to look down upon the poor and resourceless people of the society and not to consider themselves superior to others. They should learn to respect the weak and co-operate with them because may be Almighty, Allah, is providing them because of the poor.

SAWS: May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection
MAPH: May Allah be pleased with him

Riyaadiss-Saliheen (The Meadows of the Righteous)
By Imam An Nawawi
Hadith 1: Chapter 33, Page 93, No 271
Hadith 2: Chapter 33, Page 94, No 272

Ayaat 88-91 ~ An-Nahl (The Bees)

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

88. Those who disbelieved and hinder (men) from the Path of Allâh, for them We will add torment over the torment; because they used to spread corruption [by disobeying Allâh themselves, as well as ordering others (mankind) to do so].

89. And (remember) the Day when We shall raise up from every nation a witness against them from amongst themselves. And We shall bring you (O Muhammad) as a witness against these. And We have sent down to you the Book (the Quran) as an exposition of everything, a guidance, a mercy, and glad tidings for those who have submitted themselves (to Allâh as Muslims).

90. Verily, Allâh enjoins Al-Adl[1] and Al-Ihsân[2], and giving (help) to kith and kin[3]: and forbids Al-Fahshâ'[4], and Al-Munkar[5], and Al-Baghy (i.e. all kinds of oppression), He admonishes you, that you may take heed.

91. And fulfill the Covenant of Allâh (Bai’a: pledge for Islâm) when you have covenanted, and break not the oaths after you have confirmed them, and indeed you have appointed Allâh your surety. Verily! Allâh knows what you do.

Sura 16. An-Nahl (The Bees)

[1]: Al-Adl: i.e. justice and worshipping none but Allâh Alone – Islâmic Monotheism.
[2]: Al-Ihsân: i.e. to be patient in performing your duties to Allâh, totally for Allâh’s sake and in accordance with the Sunnah (legal ways) of the Prophet in a perfect manner.
[3]: to kith and kin: i.e. all that Allâh has ordered you to give them e.g., wealth, visiting, looking after them, or any other kind of help, etc.
[4]: Al-Fahshâ’: i.e all evil deeds, e.g. illegal sexual acts, disobedience of parents, polytheism, to tell lies, to give false witness, to kill a life without right, etc.
[5]: Al-Munkar: i.e all that is prohibited by Islâmic law: polytheism of every kind, disbelief and every kind of evil deeds, etc.

Commentary ~ Shake the trunk of the palm-tree

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

So she conceived him, and she retired with him to a remote place. (Koran 19.22)

When Saidna Maryam (PBUH) was pregnant and felt that her delivery was approaching she went towards Bethlehem (a remote place). It seems that she had kept her pregnancy concealed. Nobody knew about it. She was able to hide her pregnancy throughout. She left out of Jerusalem and went towards Bethlehem. She fell down under a palm tree. Allah, the Exalted, says:

And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm-tree… (Koran 19.23)

I want you to imagine now that you are over there. Imagine the situation. Maryam (PBUH) has been hiding this pregnancy for 9 months. That is difficult in itself. And now she is leaving out of her town, alone and with no help. She is feeling the pain of childbirth and it drives her and she falls down under a palm tree. It was so difficult on her that she said:

…She cried (in her anguish): “Ah! would that I had died before this! would that I had been a thing forgotten. (Koran 19.23)

Saidna Maryam (PBUH) was chaste and righteous. Now she is going to deliver a child and she has never been married. She knows the tongues of the people. She knows the harm they will cause her and her family. The righteous family of Al-Imran. It became so difficult on her that she wished she never had lived before this. And she wished that no one has known her and that she was forgotten and that she didn’t exist. In that moment of difficulty, Allah, the Exalted, provided her with Sakina. When things got to the level where it is unbearable for her anymore than Allah, the Exalted, brought her comfort and Mercy. Allah says:

But (a voice) cried to her from beneath the (palm-tree): “Grieve not! for thy Lord hath provided a rivulet beneath thee; (Koran 19.24)

The scholars say the voice is either Jibreel (PBUH) or Issa (Jesus) (PBUH). The voice says: La tahzani! (do not grieve), your Lord has provided a water stream under you.

“And shake towards thyself the trunk of the palm-tree: It will let fall fresh ripe dates upon thee. (Koran 19.25)

Shake the trunk of the date-palm towards you and it will let fresh ripe dates fall upon you. So Allah provided her with water and Allah provided her with dates. It is a miracle from Allah that Allah provided her with this. A water stream was suddenly flowing under her. She can reach it with her hands and then Allah, the Exalted, said to shake the palm tree and fresh ripe dates will fall unto you.

Now we learn from this some very important lessons.

Maryam (PBUH) just delivered a child, is helpless, alone. And she is told by Issa (PBUH) or Jibreel (PBUH) to shake, not the branch of the palm tree, but to shake what? The trunk, the base of the palm tree. And all of you know palm trees and how solid they are. If a group of men surrounded it and tried to shake it at the base it is impossible. So what is the point in Allah telling Maryam (PBUH) to shake the base of a palm tree? She’s not going to be able to shake it. She’s not going to be able to move it even a fraction of an inch. So why is Allah telling her to shake it? Make an effort. She has to do her part. Allah could have made the dates fall on her without her shaking it. Because it is not the shaking of a palm tree that will make the fruit fall down. It is a miracle from Allah. If you put your hands on a palm tree, don’t expect any dates to fall on you. It is a miracle from Allah. Allah, the Exalted, could have made the dates fall down without her intervention. But Allah wants her to do her part. And that is a very very important lesson. If we want the victory of Allah, we have to do our part. You have to take the first step. Allah says in the Hadith Qudsi “If you walk towards Me. I will run towards you”. But you have to take the first step. And Allah says the ones who seek guidance, who look for it, Allah will give it to them. If you seek guidance Allah will give it to you. If you wait there expecting things to come to you without any effort, nothing will happen. Allah does not reward the person for their laziness, procrastination and passiveness. Allah wants us to do our part.

So Maryam (PBUH) put her hand on the palm tree and these fresh ripe dates fell on her. We also learn from this in conjunction with the Sounna of the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) that that is the best food for the women who just delivered a baby. Dates are the best food for a woman who just delivered a child and this is also confirmed in the Sounna of the Messenger of Allah (SAWS). They used to give the women who just delivered dates to eat. Allah provided her with water and provided her with dates.

“So eat and drink and cool (thine) eye… (Koran 19.26)

SAWS: May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection
PBUH: Peace be upon him/her

Audio lecture “Lives of the Prophets” by Imam Anwar.
The full audio series may be downloaded here.