Page 85

increased and were brutally inflicted on the Muslims. But the more the persecutions increased, the higher the number of Muslims arose. The infidels tried all kinds of pressure and temptation to silence the Call of God. But the more they tried, the firmer Muhammad and the Muslims stood. When the infidels failed to shake the Faith of the Believers by threats, pressure, confiscation of property, jeers, etc., they organized a harsh boycott, a fierce campaign of ostracism, against the Muslims. For some years the Muslims were forced to remain within a very tight circle of association, unable to preach or sell or buy or marry or contact any of their fellow Meccans. Even this did not shake the Muslims’ Faith. The boycott went on until the infidels themselves were tired of its observance and had to call it off Bringing the severe boycott to an end was no indication of peace or anticipation of tranquillity on the part of the infidels. On the contrary, pressure and persecution continued with a rapid increase, but it was all in vain as far as the Muslims were concerned. Finally, the infidels convened a summit conference behind closed doors to discuss what to do next to eliminate Islam and get rid of Muhammad once and for all. A unanimous resolution was adopted to select a strong man from every tribe and murder Muhammad in his bed. The mission of Muhammad was not destined to end at that level. So, God instructed him to leave Mecca, his dear hometown, and migrate to Medina to reunite with the native Muslims and the earlier emigrants who had fled from Mecca to Medina (see Qur’ an 8:30; 9:40). This was the Great Event of Hijrah or Emigration with which the history of Islam began and by which the Muslim Calendar goes Fleeing from Mecca, the Muslims were forced by a variety of circumstances to leave behind practically all their properties, belongings and even families. As soon as they settled in Medina, Muhammad resumed his peaceful preaching and his gracious invitation to Islam. Some natives responded favorably to the Call of God and immediately became full-fledged members of the Muslim community. Others did not embrace Islam but maintained their traditional beliefs. And because Muhammad was dedicated to dignified peace and reform, he concluded treaties with the non-Muslims assuring them of freedom and security, and creating in their hearts, for the first time, a socio-national conscience instead of the narrow tribal allegiance While Muhammad was engaged in these reforms, trying to organize the Muslim community at Medina and lay down the foundations of a stable and peaceful society wherein Muslims and non- Muslims could live side by side, the enemies at Mecca were restless. Their hatred of the Muslims was burning, and their determination to eliminate Islam was getting stronger and stronger every day. They reviewed their tactics and as soon as they completed their new plans, they started to implement them. They decided to make trouble for the Muslims from within and from without. Plundering and fighting raids were organized to attack Medina and get back to Mecca with whatever loot they could lay their hands on. The non-Muslims at Medina were getting increasingly envious of the popularity of Islam and the novel spirit of brotherhood among the Muslims, something which they themselves did not experience or particularly like to see experienced. So, the enemies at Mecca hastened to exploit the situation and stir internal troubles for the Muslims. The response of the envious non-Muslims of Medina to the instigation of the Meccans was quick and manifest, and serious troubles were arising all over Medina Now the Muslims were being constantly threatened from within by the disenchanted at Medina as well as by the raids organized from Mecca. They were driven to a point where they could not stand any more persecution and threats. Their families were separated from them by force. Their properties were confiscated. Their blood was shed. They were forced to leave their dear hometown in three waves of migration: two to Abyssinia and one to Medina. They endured for over thirteen years. With the new tactics of the Meccan enemies there was no course for the Muslims except to await their final annihilation in a plural massacre or defend themselves against oppression and persecution

Islam in Focus  

By HAMMUDAH ABDALATI Table of Contents Chapter - II

Advertisement