Al-Rubayyi': A Visit To The Bride - The Daughter Of Mu'awwidh Ibn Afra', A Campaign Of Jihad

Islamic Perspectives - Muslim Journals

Arab News & Information - By Adil Salahi

Imagine a bride receiving the head of the state or the king who knocks at her door the morning after her wedding night to offer his congratulations. I suppose she will feel over the moon on receiving such an honor. Yet Al-Rubayyi' received a far more honorable visitor, the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself who came in and sat with her people. She reports: "God's messenger came to visit us the morning after my wedding, and he sat on this couch as you are sitting now. We had a few maids who were playing the tambourine and chanting praises of my relatives who were martyrs in the Battle of Badr. He listened to their singing until one of them said: ‘Among us is a prophet who knows what will happen tomorrow'. He said to her: ‘Do not say this. Go back to what you were saying earlier'." (Related by Al-Tirmidhi)

Perhaps we should explain here that the Prophet did not object to the maids singing, playing the tambourine, or extolling the praises of Al-Rubayyi's father and uncle. He only objected when the maid attributed to him something that belongs to God only, which is knowledge of the future.

Who was Al-Rubayyi' then, and why would the Prophet pay her such a visit? She was the daughter of Mu'awwidh ibn Afra', a man from the Ansar who, with his brother, mortally wounded Abu Jahl during the Battle of Badr and he could no longer stand on his feet. He then was killed by Abdullah ibn Masoud. Both brothers were then killed in the battle. Perhaps because of this, the Prophet wanted to reassure her that he would continue to be her guardian. She must have felt elated by the Prophet's visit, as it signified an honor any bride would dearly love to have. Indeed the Prophet continued to visit her. She might offer him a meal and he would willingly eat with her family. He accepted her gifts and was generous to her. She once brought the Prophet a plate of dates and a plate of grapes. The Prophet accepted her gift and gave her a piece of jewelery telling her to wear it. On one of his visits, he told her to pour water for him to do his ablution. She did and reported a Hadith describing how he performed his ablution, mentioning that he washed every part three times.

Al-Rubayyi' followed in her father's footsteps. She joined the Prophet's army whenever there was a campaign of jihad. Her role, like the women who joined the army, was to give support, nursing the wounded and giving the soldiers water to drink. She reports: "We used to join the Prophet on his expeditions, to give water to the fighters, serve them, attend to the wounded and send them and the dead back to Madinah." (Related by Al-Bukhari)

Al-Rubayyi' was keen to learn from the Prophet whatever she could. She reported no less than 21 Hadiths, some of them are related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim while the others are reported in other authentic anthologies of Hadith.

Few of the Prophet's companions gave us detailed descriptions of him. Among these were Ali ibn Abi Talib and Umm Maabad at whose tent the Prophet stopped on his journey when he immigrated to Madinah. They would mostly give a general description. Both Abu Bakr and Umar describe him as the full moon giving light. A man asked Al-Rubayyi' to describe the Prophet. She could only give a general description. She said: "Son, were you to see him, you would have almost seen the sun in its full splendor."

Al-Rubayyi' died in year 37, during the reign of Ali ibn Abi Talib.


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