UMMU AMMARAH RA – THE LIONESS OF UHUD
Ummu Ammarah RA is one of those Ansar women who accepted Islam in the very beginning. She was among the group that pledged loyalty to Nabi SAW at Al-Aqabah. Al- Aqabah in Arabic means a narrow mountain road. In the early days of Islam, the new Muslims were ill-treated by the Quraish very badly. They would put all sorts of difficulties in the way of Tabligh. Therefore, Nabi SAW carried on his work quietly and secretly. People from Madinah Munawwarah who used to come to Makkah Mukarramah for Hajj usually accepted Islam secretly in a mountain road near Mina, so that the Quraish might not see them.
Ummu Ammarah RA was in the third such group from Madinah Munawwarah. She joined most of the battles that were fought after Hijrah (migration). She took an important part in Uhud, Hudaibiyah, Khaibar, Umratul Qadha, Hunain and Yamamah. In the battle of Uhud, she was forty-three years old. Her husband and two sons were also fighting in this battle. She took a leather bottle full of water and headed for Uhud to help the wounded and the thirsty. In the beginning, the Muslims were winning, but things changed in a moment and the enemies were in a winning position. She had reached Nabi SAW, when wave after wave of enemy troops rushed to attack and kill him. She protected Nabi SAW whenever anybody approached him. She had a cloth-belt round her waist, full of pieces of cloth, with which she cared for the wounded. She herself got about twelve wounds, one of which was very serious.
Ummu Sa’eed RA says: “I once saw a very deep cut on the shoulder of Ummu Ammarah RA. I asked her how she had got that. She said, ‘I got it in Uhud. When people were running about in confusion, I saw Ibn Qumiah coming towards us and shouting, ‘Where is Muhammad !. Let somebody tell me about his whereabouts. If he is saved today, I am no more.’ I, Mus’ab bin Umair and some others stopped him. He gave me this deep cut on my shoulder. I also attacked him, but he escaped because of the double coat of armour that he was wearing.”
After a year’s treatment, the wound would not heal. In the meantime, Nabi SAW decided to go to Hamra-ul-Asad. Ummu Ammarah RA also got ready but she could not join as her wound had still not healed. When Nabi SAW returned from this battle, he at once went to visit Ummu Ammarah RA. He was very happy to find her better. She says: “We were greatly disadvantaged in Uhud. The enemies were on horseback, while we fought on foot. There would have been a fair fight if they too had been on foot. When somebody had came riding on his horse to attack me, I stopped his sword with my shield and when he turned about;
I attacked his horse from the back and cut its leg. This caused the horse as well as the rider to fall on the ground. As soon as this happened, Nabi SAW would shout to my son, who would run to my help and then we both finished the man in no time.” Her son Abdullah bin Zaid RA says: “I had a wound on my left arm, which would not stop bleeding. Nabi SAW said to my mother, ‘Put a bandage over it.’ My mother took out a bandage from her belt and after bandaging my wound, said, ‘Now, son! Go and fight again with the idolaters.’ Nabi SAW was watching us. He said, ‘O, Ummu Ammarah RA, who can have courage like yours?”
At that time, Nabi SAW prayed again and again for Ummu Ammarah RA and her family. Ummu Ammarah RA said, “I was standing with Nabi SAW when one of the enemies passed by in front of me. Nabi SAW said to me, ‘UmmU Ammarah! He is the man who wounded your son.’ I jumped at him and hit his leg. This caused him to fall down.
We then went forward and finished him. Nabi SAW smiled and said, ‘Ummu Ammarah RA has taken revenge for her son,’ When Nabi SAW was praying for us, I said to him, ‘O, Nabi of Allah! Pray that I may join you in Jannat.’ He made this prayer too. After this I cared very little for any difficulty that came to me in this life.”
As has already been said, she also joined many other battles with the same keenness and courage. After the demised of Nabi SAW , she took part in the fierce battle of Yamamah, which was fought with the rebels. She lost one of her arms and received eleven other wounds in this battle. She was forty-three in Uhud and fifty-two in Yamamah. Her great courage in these battles at that age was really amazing.
Lessons Learned from the Life of Umm Ammarah R.A (THE PROPHET’S SHIELD AT UHUD).
Bismillaa hir rahmaan nir raheem
The typical Muslim woman, shrouded from the world, lives her life in obscurity in the service of her husband and children. Seeking no recognition and having no personality or ambitions beyond the pleasure of her family she lives and dies leaving no mark on the pages of history. She is of course oppressed, neglected and possibly abused. That’s how the mainstream media of the western world degrade the role of Muslim women for many decades.
“But that is not true!” you cry out. These statements infuriate us, but a large number of people, Muslims and people of other faiths, believe these myths to be true. As the knowledge of the Deen receded through the years of colonialism, we lost touch with the real heroes and heroines of Islam and replaced them with worthless icons from the popular media. To destroy all stereotypes we need to study the life of just one of these amazing women: Umm Ammarah, Naseebah bint Ka’b al-Maziniyah al-Ansariyah.
As you sit in the comfort of your home and read about her life, you will weep. You will than filled with pride at her accomplishments and shame at your own inadequacy. You complain about your mountain of laundry and the house hold chores , while she climbed a mountain to defend the Messenger of Allah SAW.
Your struggle to give your children a Muslim identity, while her son defied Musaylamah the Liar even as he cut off piece after piece of his body and martyred him. The slightest insult from a friend or acquaintance leaves us emotionally traumatized and useless for days. She received close to a dozen wounds in just one battle and, when fighting at the age of sixty, she lost her arm.
If, You could meet her, You would ask her just as the Messenger of Allah SAW had asked, “From where can anyone get courage like you, O Umm Ammarah?”
Maybe she would take your hand in her worn and wounded hand and give you some advice. Maybe she would give you some insight to her extraordinary valor, determination and, most importantly, her unwavering iman that guided her through all her struggles. Maybe she would say…
Love Allah and His Messenger SAW.
In my research I could not find a direct quote recorded from Umm Ammarah RA. So with any kind of writing, memoirs with regards to the toils of blood,sweat and tears of Ummu Ammarah RA just like the other among the Ummu Mukminin that we are very much familiar with.
Now we know about Ummu Ammarah RA , the lady warrior of Uhud and many other battle. The manifestation by action on her love for Allah SWT and His Messenger SAW. But some people speak so clearly with their actions that words become unnecessary. Especially in this world that we live in today where knowledge is abundant but actions are scarce, she truly fulfilled the ayat of the Quran,
Say, “Indeed, my prayer, my rites of sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allah, Lord of the worlds.” (Al-Anam 6:162)
Her life is a testimony to her deep love for Allah and His Messenger sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam and this is the most important lesson we can learn from her.