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SAALIM MAWLAA ABIHUDHAIFAH
Blessed Be the Carrier of the Qur'aan
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) advised his Companions one day, "Take the Qur'aan from four
people: Abd Allah Ibn Mas'uud, Saalim Mawlaa Abi Hudhaifah Ubai lbn Ka'b and Mu'aadh lbn Jabal."
We have met before with Ibn Mas'uud and Ubai and Mu'aadh. So, who was this fourth Companion
whom the Messenger made as an authority for the teaching of the Our'aan and a source of reference?
Verily, he was Saalim Mawlaa Abi Hudhaifah. He was a kind servant. Islam was exalted on account of
him until it made him a son of one of the great Muslims who, before his Islam, was honored to be one of
the most noble of the Quraish and one of their leaders. When Islam cancelled the practice of adoption, he
became a brother, a friend, a protector of those whom he had adopted. Such was the glorious Companion,
Abu Hudhaifah Ibn `Utbah. By the grace of Allah and His favor upon Saalim, he reached an elevated
lofty position which his spiritual virtues, along with his behavior and his piety, had prepared him for.
Saalim Mawlaa Abi Hudhaifah was known by that name because he had been a slave and
emancipated. He believed in Allah and His Messenger early, and took his place among the first
Abu Hudhaifah Ibn `Utbah became Muslim at an early age and hastened to Islam, leaving his father,
`Utbah Ibn Rabii'ah, swallowing his anger and his concerns which disturbed the purity of his life, due to
the Islam of his son, who was noble among his people. His father had been preparing him for leadership
among the Quraish.
Abu Hudhaifah adopted Saalim and emancipated him, and he became known as Saalim Ibn Abi
Hudhaifah. Both of them continuously worshiped their Lord in awe and fear and were extremely patient
under the hardship of the Quraish and their schemes.
One day, verses of the Qur'aan were revealed which outlawed the practice of adoption and every
adopted person returned to carrying the name of his real father who had begotten him. So, Zaid Ibn
Haarithah, for example, whom the Prophet had adopted and who had been known among the Muslims as
Zaid lbn Muhammad, returned to carrying the name of his father, Haarithah and became Zaid Ibn
Uaarithah. But Saalim's father was not known to him, so Abu Hudhaifah became his guardian and be was
called Saalim Mawlaa Abi Hudhaifah.
Perhaps when it cancelled the practice of adoption Islam wanted to say to the Muslims, Do not take
kinship nor relationship, nor the bond by which you affirm your brotherhood as greater and stronger than
Islam itself and the religious faith by which you are really made brothers. The early Muslims understood
this very well. So, nothing was more loved to any one of them after Allah and His Messenger than their
brethren in faith and in Islam.
We have seen how the Ansaar welcomed their brethren, the Muhaajiruun. They shared with them
their wealth, their homes, and all they owned. This is what we saw happening between Abu Hudhaifah,
the noble of the Quraish, and Saalim, who was an emancipated slave and did not know his father.
They remained more than brothers up to the last moment of their lives, even until death: they died
together spirit with spirit and body close to body. This is the unique, incomparable greatnesses of Islam,
but this is only one of its greatnesses and its superiorities.
Saalim believed with a sincere faith and took his path to Allah by adopting the behavior of the
devout and pious. Neither his genealogy nor his position in society had any consideration for him. He