(Sayyidah Asmaa bintu Abi Bakr [radhiyallahu ‘anhuma] – Part Seven)

As mentioned previously, the mother of Sayyidah Asmaa (radhiyallahu ‘anha), Qutailah bintu ‘Abdil ‘Uzza, had been divorced by Sayyiduna Abu Bakr (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) in the days of Jaahiliyyah (the pre-Islamic period). Thereafter, when Sayyidah Asmaa (radhiyallahu ‘anha) embraced Islam (at the young age of approximately fourteen), her mother still remained upon disbelief.

Years later, during the period of peace between the Muslims and the disbelievers of Makkah Mukarramah (after the treaty of Hudaibiyyah, before the Conquest of Makkah Mukarramah), the mother of Sayyidah Asmaa (radhiyallahu ‘anha) came to visit her in Madeenah Munawwarah.

Her mother came bearing gifts of raisins and ghee, hoping to see her daughter after all these years. She also hoped to acquire some financial assistance from her daughter. However, on hearing that her mother had arrived, Sayyidah Asmaa (radhiyallahu ‘anha) refused to see her or even allow her to enter the home. Since her mother was a disbeliever, she was not sure as to the law of sharee‘ah and whether it was permissible for her to admit her mother into her home and show her kindness.

Thus, she immediately sent a message to her sister, Sayyidah ‘Aaishah (radhiyallahu ‘anha), informing her of her predicament and requesting her to ask Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) as to what she should do. Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) replied, “She should allow her mother to enter her home, accept her gifts, and grant her assistance as well.”

It was only after she had received guidance from Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) that she allowed her mother into her home, entertained her and showed her kindness.

(Saheeh Bukhaari #3183 and Tabaqaat Ibni Sa’d vol. 8, pg. 252)

Lessons:

1. Although Sayyidah Asmaa (radhiyallahu ‘anha) was seeing her mother after approximately six or seven years, she still exercised restraint and refrained from welcoming her into her home until she first enquired the ruling from Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). Likewise, she did not accept her mother’s gifts or give her anything – until she first acquired the permission of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alahi wasallam). From this, we understand that her love and loyalty to Islam and Rasulullah (salllallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) was even more than her love for her own mother.

2. The Sahaabah (radhiyallahu ‘anhum) were very cautious and particular, and would find out the laws of sharee‘ah before doing anything, as they feared displeasing Allah Ta‘ala. Hence, we too should constantly refer to the knowledgeable, rightly-guided ‘Ulama at all times so that we may acquire guidance and ensure that we are not falling into the displeasure of Allah Ta‘ala.

3. Muslims should not take non-Muslims as friends and confidantes, nor should Muslims have any love for disbelievers. Nevertheless, without compromising on Deen, Muslims should treat the disbelievers with kindness and deal with them in a manner that displays the beautiful values and conduct of Islam, as this may be a means of drawing them towards Islam. For example, one may send some food to the house of the non-Muslim neighbour (though one should not invite the non-Muslim into one’s home). Furthermore, acts of kindness to any human being is highly rewarding. One should therefore do it with an open heart.

4. Islam greatly emphasizes the importance of treating one’s parents with kindness and respect and fulfilling their rights. Even if they are non-Muslims, one should treat them with kindness. However, one will not compromise his Deeni values for their sake. Thus, if they ask one to carry out something impermissible, then one will not obey them, though one will remain respectful and polite.