Amr bin Jumuh (r.a.)

Those who were honored by the light of Islam in Madinah increased day by day. The Muslims who returned from the Second Pledge of Aqaba continued to propagate Islam even more enthusiastically and to expand the circle of Islam day by day.

One of the young Muslims who attended the Pledge was Muadh bin Amr. He belonged to Sons of Salama clan of the tribe of Khazraj. Along with him, there were a few other young men belonging to the same tribe including Muadh bin Jabal. They worked day and night to convey the message of Islam with enthusiasm. They often came together, made new plans to guide others and put those plans into practice immediately. The biggest desire of Muadh bin Amr was to make his father, Amr bin Jumuh, the leader of Sons of Salama, a Muslim.

Amr was a person who was famous for his generosity. He had a temple of idols built for his tribe and placed a big idol there. He took care of this temple, which he named “Manat”, personally, doing the cleaning and maintenance works himself.

Muadh and his friends believed that they should first alienate him from idols in order to encourage Amr bin Jumuh to enter Islam and decided to implement the following plan:

They decided to enter the temple every evening after people went home and do various things to the idol; thus, they would show Amr and the other people who went there that an idol that was too was weak to protect itself could not give anything to those who worshipped it.

Every evening, they went to the temple secretly; they sometimes overthrew the idol, spread some dirt on the idol and sometimes broke some parts of the idol. When Amr came to the temple in the morning, he cleaned the idol and put some perfume on it; he also tried to find out who was doing it angrily and in astonishment. However, he could not find out who did it by any means.

Finally, he hung a sword around the neck of the idol and said,

"If there is strength in you, you can resist those who insult you with this sword."

Muadh and his friends came to the temple at night, removed the sword from it, tied a dead dog on him and dragged the idol out of the temple. Then, they threw it into one of the wells of Sons of Salama.

The next day Amr, who could not see the big idol in its usual place, immediately went out to look for it. Meanwhile, people were disturbed by the smell of the dead dog in the well and were trying to remove it from the well. When Amr arrived at the well, he saw that the big idol had been taken out of the well with the dead dog and was lying there. At that time, Amr bin Jumuh was convinced that there was no power in idols and he became a Muslim. The plan of Muadh and his friends was successful, and the leader of Sons of Salama became a Muslim. They became very happy. [1]

Amr bin Jumuh narrated how he became a Muslim after this incident by writing a poem; he thanked Allah Almighty for guiding him.

One foot of Amr bin Jumuh was handicapped. However, he really wanted to take part in the Battle of Badr. The Messenger of Allah did not allow him to join the Battle of Badr despite his insistence because he was disabled.

After a while, preparations for Uhud started. Amr was determined this time. He definitely wanted to take part in the battle.  However, his four sons, who were self-sacrificing and heroic Muslims like him did not allow him to join the battle. Amr went to the Messenger of Allah and complained about his sons:

"O Messenger of Allah! My sons do not want to send me to Uhud with you. I swear by Allah that I want to go to Paradise with this lame foot."

The Messenger of Allah said, "Jihad is not fard for you. Allah accepts you as an excused person." Amr definitely wanted to join Uhud. Then, the Messenger of Allah summoned Amr's children and said to them:

"Do not try to prevent him. Allah will probably make him a martyr." [2]

Amr, who received permission to join the battle as a result of his insistence, went to Uhud joyfully. When the war started, he and his sons attacked the enemy so horribly that people watched them in astonishment. Amr bin Jumuh, who once had a temple of idols built for his people, was now fighting in the way of Allah; and he desired to be a martyr so much. After breaking into the enemy ranks and causing a lot of casualties, he attained his desire. Two of his sons were also martyred together with him. Hz. Umar took the dead bodies of Amr and his sons from the ranks of the enemies.

When the Messenger of Allah heard that they were martyred, he gave the following glad tiding:

"Amr and his sons have now set foot in Paradise."

The Messenger of Allah ordered that Amr bin Jumuh and his sons be buried in the same grave. [3] Amr’s son, Mu'adh, was moved by this scene more than anybody else. Muadh, who once had worked very hard so that his father, who once had a temple of idols built, would become a Muslim, saw his two brothers and his father as martyrs.

May Allah rest their souls!


[1]Usdul-Ghaba, 4: 93-94.
[2]Isaba, 4: 291.
[3]ibid, 4: 93-94; Tabaqat, 3: 562.

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