Last edition we started with the story of this couple. We saw how Abu Lahab despite being an uncle of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) remained in opposition to him and Islam till he died. Abu Lahab was not alone in the persecution of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and those who believed in him; he was ably supported by his wife Umm Jamil.
Her name was 'Arwah bint Umayyah but was known as Umm Jamil the sister of Abu Sufyan. She was one of the leading women of Quraysh. She was in full support of her husband in his disbelief, rejection and stubbornness and always ready to do anything that would cause harm to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). She used to place thorns on the path of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings be upon him so that he will be harmed. Allaah talks about her in the Qur'an:
"He will be burnt in a Fire of blazing flames! And his wife, too, who carries wood (thorns of sa'dan which she used to put in the way of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him), or use to slander him)." (Q 111: 3-4)
In one particular incident after Allaah had revealed Surat AIMasad (Q111), the one-eyed Umm Jamil came out wailing and she had a stone in her hand. She was .saying "He (Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him)] criticizes our fathers, and his religion is a scorn and his command is to disobey us' The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was sitting in the Mosque (of the Ka'abah) and Abu Bakr was with him. When Abu Bakr saw her he said '0 Messenger of Allaah! She is coming and I fear she will see you' The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings be upon him) replied, "Verily, she will not see me". Then he recited:
"And when you recite the Qur'an, We put between you and those who believe not in the Hereafter, an invisible veil"" (Q 17:45).
So she advanced until she was standing in front of Abu Bakr and she did not see the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings be upon him). She then said, '0 Abu Bakr! Verily, I have been informed that your friend is making defamatory statement about me'.
Abu Bakr (replied) 'Nay! By the Lord of this house (the Ka'bah) he is not defaming you.' So she turned away saying, Indeed the Quraysh know that I am the daughter of their leader.''' (Fath al-Bari).
Allaah confirms that she and her husband will be in the Hell fire. Allaah says about her in the concluding part of the chapter "In her neck is a twisted rope of Masad (palm fibre i.e. a chain which is in the Hell fire.)" There is a lesson in this story for us, that, no matter how close we may be to someone or the affection we have for the person, we should not support such a person in something that if involves disobeying Allaah our creator.
Another lesson is that whatever our status may be, it should not stop us from accepting the truth even if the person who is saying it is lower to us in status.
The story also teaches us that we should not stay away from blind following. Umm Jamil and her husband took pride in the religion of their ancestors even though those people were not on true guidance. Tafseer ibn Katheer
This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited