The Prophet Enters Madinah
After performing the Friday prayer in Ranuna, the Prophet got on his camel and put the halter around the head of the camel. Hazrat Abu Bakr was behind him and the people of Banu Najjar and the Muslims of Madinah were around him. Some of them proceeded on foot; some on animals; their shouts of joy and takbirs resounded everywhere.
The Messenger of God proceeded toward the center of Madinah slowly. The city was full of joy. This holy city, which will have the honor of being the center of Islam, was virtually dancing with joy. It was experiencing the happiness of embracing the Messenger of God and being the place of abode for him.
The women and children were livening up the scene with the poems they were reciting. They continuously recited the following lines:
O the White Moon rose over us from the Valley of Wada'
And we owe it to show gratefulness where the call is to God
O you who were raised amongst us
coming with a work to be obeyed ! (1)
The people of Madinah were in the streets in order to see the Prophet’s blessed face, which was sending out bright lights. The children who were wearing their best clothes were playing happily.
The women on the roofs and the men in the streets were calling out to him, “Welcome!” “Muhammad has come! O Muhammad, O Messenger of God! O Muhammad, O Messenger of God!” (2)
Accompanied by this hearty and emotional cheering, the Prophet continued to proceed on his camel, Qaswa, with an exceptional style that combined modesty and sedateness.
The People of Madinah Invite Him
While the Messenger of God was proceeding, the owner of the every house that he rode past wanted to have the honor of entertaining him and held the halter of his camel, saying, “O Messenger of God! Please come to our house!”
The Prophet answered them by smiling and saying, “Let the camel; She was instructed where to stop.” The blessed animal proceeded by looking to the right and left.
With its halter around its neck, Qaswa proceeded toward the houses of Banu Malik b. Najjar and crouched on her knees on an empty plot of land.
The Prophet did not dismount at once. After a while, the camel got up, walked a few meters and returned to the same place where it had crouched. This time, it did not stand up. She put her neck and chest on the ground and started to bray lightly and move to the right and left.
Everybody was looking at Qaswa. Was the Messenger of God going to be a guest in the place where she crouched or somewhere else? Nobody had any idea about it.
Meanwhile, little innocent girls of Banu Najjar were playing tambourines, welcoming him:
“We are the daughters of Banu Najjar.
The relation and neighborhood of Muhammad is so nice!” (3)
The Messenger of God answered the sincere feelings and joys of the innocent children with smiles and asked them, “Do you love me?”
They all said, “Yes, we love you, O Messenger of God!”
The Master of the Universe said, “God knows that I love you, too! By God, I love you, too! By God, I love you, too! By God, I love you, too!”
Each one of the Muslims of Madinah wanted heartily the Messenger of God to honor their house. When Qaswa crouched, Jabbar b. Sahr kicked her in order to make her stand up. When Hazrat Abu Ayyub al-Ansari noticed it, he got very angry and said to him, “O Jabbar! You kicked her to make her stand up in front of my house. I swear by God, who sent Muhammad with the true religion, that I would hit you with my sword if Islam did not prohibit it!”
The Prophet honors the house of Abu Ayyub al-Ansari!
When Qaswa crouched for the second time and did not get up, the Prophet said, “With the permission of God, this is the place where I will stay.” and dismounted his camel.
Thus, the migration of Muhammad (pbuh), which was one of the brightest events of the history of Islam and the world, ended with the dismounting of the Prophet.
The Muslims were waiting in curiosity and excitement. Whose house was the Messenger of God going to honor? Everybody was joyful and happy. They wanted to increase the joy and happiness by entertaining the Prophet in their houses.
The Prophet asked the people around him. “The house of which relative of us is nearest?”
Abu Ayyub al-Ansari from Banu Najjar said with joy and excitement, “O Messenger of God! My house is the nearest! That is my house. That is the gate.”, showing his house. Then, he said, “Will you let me carry the things on the camel there?” He removed the things on the camel and carried them to his house.
Thereupon, the Prophet said, “A person stays where his animal and things are.” Then, he said to Abu Ayyub al-Ansari, “Go and prepare a place to entertain us!” (4)
Meanwhile Asad b. Zurara, one of the notables of the Muslims of Madinah, took Qaswa to his house to bring good luck.
Hazrat Abu Ayyub al-Ansari went to his house and prepared it. Then he returned and said, “O Messenger of God! I prepared places for both of you. Please proceed to your place with the blessings of God.” (5)
Among cheers, the Messenger of God stood up and went to the house of Abu Ayyub al-Ansari. Thus, this beloved Companion had the honor of entertaining the master of the Universe.
With the arrival of the Messenger of God in Madinah, the Muhajirs (Migrants), who were sad because they were away from their homeland, became very happy and joyful. Madinah was full of joy and excitement, like a place of festival.
Bara b. Azib, a Companion, describes the joy and excitement on that exceptional day as follows:
“I have never seen the people of Madinah rejoice so much as they rejoiced when the Messenger of God (pbuh) came to Madinah. I saw the women and children shout enthusiastically, ‘The Messenger of God has come. Muhammad (pbuh) has come!’” (6)
Anas b. Malik from Ansar, who was a child then, attracts attention to the magnificence and brightness of that day:
“I have never seen a finer, brighter and more magnificent day than the day when the Messenger of God (pbuh) arrived in Madinah!” (7)
Abu Ayyub al-Ansari Narrates...
Abu Ayyub al-Ansari, the host of the Messenger of God narrates:
“When the Messenger of God honored our house, he stayed on the ground floor. My wife Umm Ayyub and I were on the first floor.
I said, ‘May my father and mother be sacrificed for you, O Messenger of God! I do not want to be upstairs when you are downstairs. I cannot feel well. Please, move upstairs, and we will stay downstairs.’
The Messenger of God said, ‘O Abu Ayyub! It is better and more appropriate for us to live downstairs.’ and continued to stay downstairs. We were over them in the house. Meanwhile, our pitcher, which was full of water, broke. We feared that the water drops would fall on the Prophet and disturb him. Therefore, we tried to stop the water by putting our velvet quilt on the water at once.” (8)
The Messenger of God found it more appropriate to stay downstairs because many people would visit him and he would be able to meet and talk to them more easily downstairs.
However, Abu Ayyub, the great believer, and his wife, felt disturbed and restless. They thought, ‘How come? The Messenger of God is downstairs and we are upstairs.’
One night Hazrat Abu Ayyub woke up and could not sleep again due to that feeling. He moved some of the things of the house to another part of the house and sat up all night.
In the morning, Hazrat Abu Ayyub told the Prophet what had happened. However, the Prophet said, ‘Downstairs is better for me.’
However, the great Companion could not put with it any more and said, ‘O Messenger of God! It is impossible for me to stay upstairs while you are downstairs!’
Thereupon, the Messenger of God moved upstairs and Abu Ayyub and his wife Umm Ayyub moved downstairs. (9)
The Messenger of God stayed in the house of Abu Ayyub al-Ansari for seven months. During this period, the Muslims of Madinah (Ansar) virtually competed with one another to offer food to the Prophet and to meet his needs.
The Messenger of God does not like the Smell of Onion and Garlic
The Muslims of Madinah brought food regularly every day to the Messenger of God, who settled in the house of Hazrat Abu Ayyub al-Ansari.
Hazrat Abu Ayyub and his family always prepared dinner for him and ate what the Prophet left.
One evening, they sent him a dish containing onion or garlic.
The Messenger of God returned the dish!
When Abu Ayyub (may God be pleased with him) did not see any change in the dish, he went to the Messenger of God hurriedly and said, “O Messenger of God! May my father and mother be sacrificed for you! You returned the dish without eating anything last night!”
The Messenger of God said, “I felt a smell in that dish and I did not eat it. I do not want to disturb my friend, Jibril. Angels are disturbed by the things that humans are disturbed.”
Thereupon, Abu Ayyub said, “O Messenger of God! Is that food haram?”
The Messenger of God said, “No. However, I did not like it due to its smell” (10)
Abu Ayyub said, “Then, I do not like what you do not like, either!” (11)
A Miraculous Feast
One day, when the Messenger of God was staying in the house of Hazrat Abu Ayyub, Hazrat Abu Ayyub brought food that was enough for two people to the Messenger of God and Hazrat Abu Bakr.
The Prophet said to him, “Go and invite thirty people from the notables of Ansar!”
Hazrat Abu Ayyub fulfilled his order. Thirty people came and ate from that food.
Then, he said, “Invite sixty more people!”
Hazrat Abu Ayyub invited sixty more people. They came and ate, too.
Then, the Messenger of God said, “Invite seventy more people!”
Hazrat Abu Ayyub fulfilled his order, too. Seventy people came and ate.
Hazrat Abu Ayyub said,
“There was still some food in the pot. Those who came to eat became Muslims when they saw that miracle. One hundred and eighty people ate the food that I had prepared for two people!” (12)
It was a miraculous feast of the Messenger of God. Those miracles concerning the blessings of abundance illustrate that “Muhammad (pbuh) is such an honored servant, and such a beloved envoy, of the Merciful and Munificent One Who provides his sustenance and creates the sustenance of all beings, that He changes His own custom for his sake and sends for him in case of need such banquets from the Unseen as He created from nothingness.” (13)
When the Messenger of God migrated to Madinah, the Muslims did not have a calendar peculiar to them. Therefore, they accepted the migration of the Prophet as the beginning of the calendar and started to use phrases like, “one month after the migration of the Messenger of God, two months after the migration of the Messenger of God...”
It was used like that until the Messenger of God died. However, after that, it stopped. The caliphate of Hazrat Abu Bakr and the first four years of the caliphate of Hazrat Umar passed like that. There was a need for a calendar for the formal transactions and civil relations.
Thereupon, Hazrat Umar had a meeting with the Companions regarding the issue.
Sa’d b. Abi Waqqas suggested the death of the Prophet, Talha b. Ubaydullah suggested the beginning of the prophethood, Hazrat Ali suggested the migration of the Prophet to Madinah and some others suggested the birthday of the Prophet being accepted as the beginning of the Muslim calendar.
As a result of the negotiations of this committee that convened in the seventeenth or sixteenth year of Hijrah, the offer of Hazrat Ali was accepted. However, there was not an agreement on the first month of the calendar. Abdurrah¬man b. Awf suggested the month of “Rajab” because it was the first one of the forbidden months; Talha b. Ubay¬dullah suggested the month of Ramadan because it was the blessed month of Muslims; Hazrat Ali (may God be pleased with him) suggested the month of Muharram because it was the beginning of the year.
Thus, Muslims designed a calendar peculiar to them based on the lunar months and starting from the year when the Prophet migrated to Madinah. (14)
1. Halabi, Insanu’l-Uyun, V. 2, p. 58.
2. Muslim, Sahih, V. 8, p. 236; Tabari, Tarikh, V. 2, p. 248.
3. Ibn Majah, Sunan, V. 2, p. 612.
4. Ibn Sa’d, Tabaqat, V. 1, p. 235; Bukhari, Sahih, V. 2, p. 335.
5. Ibn Sa’d, ibid., V. 1, p. 236; Bukhari, ibid., V. 2, p. 335.
6. Ibn Sa’d, ibid., V. 1, p. 234; Bukhari, ibid., V. 2, p. 337.
7.Ibn Sa’d, ibid., V. 1, p. 234.
8. Ibn Hisham, Sirah, V. 2, p. 143-144.
9. Muslim, Sahih, V. 6, p. 127.
10. Ibn Hisham, Sirah, V. 2, p. 144.
11. Muslim, Sahih, V. 6, p. 126-127.
12. Qadi Iyad, ash-Shifa, V. 1, p. 563; Badiuzzaman Said Nursi, Mektubat, p. 117.
13. Badiuzzaman Said Nursi, ibid., p. 123.
14. az-Zabidi, Tajrid-i Sarih, Trns., V. 10, p. 120-121.