In An-Nadwah (Council) House

In An-Nadwah (Council) House

The Parliament of Quraish The polytheists were paralyzed by the carefully planned and speedy movement of Hazrat Muhammad’s ﷺ followers towards their new abode in Madinah. They were caught in unprecedented anxiety and they were deeply worried over their whole pagan and economic entity. They already experienced Hazrat Muhammad ﷺ as an influential leader; and his followers as determined, decent and always ready to sacrifice all they had for the sake of Allâh’s Messengerﷺ Al-Aws and Al-Khazraj tribes, the would-be-hosts of the Makkan Muslims, were also known in Arabia for their might and power in war, and judicious and sensible approach in peace. They were also against enmity and prejudice for they themselves had had bitter days of inter-tribal warfare. Madinah, the prospective headquarters of the ever-growing Islamic Call, itself enjoyed the most serious strategic position. It commanded the commercial routes leading to Makkah whose people used to deal in about a quarter of a million gold dinar-worth commodities every year. Security of the caravan routes was crucial for the continuity of prosperous economic life. All those factors borne in mind, the polytheists felt they were in the grip of a serious threat. They, therefore, began to seek the most effective method that could avert this imminent danger. They convened a meeting on Thursday morning, 26th Safar, the year fourteen of declaration of Prophethood (12th September 622 C.E.). i.e., two and a half months after the Great ‘Aqabah Pledge. 121 On that day, ‘the Parliament of Makkah held the most serious meeting ever, with one item on the agenda: How to take effective measures with a view to stopping that tidal wave. Delegates representing all the Quraishite tribes attended the meeting, the most significant of whom were: 1Abu Jahl bin Hisham, from Bani Makhzum; 2-4. Jubair bin Mut’im, Tu’aimah bin ‘Adi, and Al-Harith bin ‘Amir representing Bani Naufal bin ‘Abd Manaf; 5-7. Rabi’ah’s two sons Shaibah and ‘Utbah besides Abu Sufyan bin Harb from Bani ‘Abd Shams bin ‘Abd Manaf; 8. An-Nadr bin Al-Harith to speak for Bani ‘Abdud-Dar; 9-11. Abul-Bukhtari bin Hisham, Zam’ah bin Al-Aswad and Hakim bin Hizam to represent Bani Asad bin ‘Abdul-‘Uzza; 12, 13. Al-Hajjaj’s two sons Nabih and Munbih from Bani Sahm; 14. Umaiyah bin Khalaf from Bani Jumah. On their way to An-Nadwah House, Iblis (Satan) in the guise of a respected elderly man standing at the door interrupted their talk and introduced himself as a man from Najd curious enough to attend the meeting, listen to the debate and wish them success to reach a sound opinion. He was readily admitted in. There was a lengthy debate and several proposals were put forward. Expulsion from Makkah was proposed and debated in turn but finally turned down on grounds that his sweet and hearttouching words could entice the other Arabs to attack them in their own city. Imprisonment for life was also debated but also refused for fear that his followers might increase in number, overpower them and release him by force. At this point, the arch-criminal of Makkah, Abu Jahl bin Hisham suggested that they kill him. But killing by one man would expose him and his family to the revenge of blood. The difficulty was at last solved by Abu Jahl himself, who suggested that a band of young men, one from each tribe. should strike Hazrat Muhammadﷺ (the simultaneously with their swords so that the blood would be spread over them all and therefore could not be revenged, and his people would seek a mind-based procedure for settlement. The sinful proposal was unanimously accepted, and the representatives broke up the meeting and went back home with full determination for immediate implementation.

(1) Ibn Hisham 1/480-482.

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