Page 15 - Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum

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5. Bearing the national banner was with Bani Omaiyah.
6. The military institute, footmen and cavalry would be Bani Makhzum’s responsibility.
7. Bani ‘Adi would function as foreign mediators.
We have previously mentioned the Qahtanide and ‘Adnanide emigrations, and division of Arabia
between these two tribes. Those tribes dwelling near Heerah were subordinate to the Arabian king
of Heerah, while those dwelling in the Syrian semi-desert were under domain of the Arabian
Ghassanide king, a sort of dependency that was in reality formal rather than actual. However, those
living in the hinder deserts enjoyed full autonomy.
These tribes in fact had heads chosen by the whole tribe which was a demi-government based on
tribal solidarity and collective interests in defence of land and property.
Heads of tribes enjoyed dictatorial privileges similar to those of kings, and were rendered full
obedience and subordination in both war and peace. Rivalry among cousins for rulership, however,
often drove them to outdo one another in entertaining guests, affecting generosity, wisdom and
chivalry for the sole purpose of outranking their rivals, and gaining fame among people especially
poets who were the official spokesmen at the time.
Heads of tribes and masters had special claims to spoils of war such as the quarter of the spoils,
whatever he chose for himself, or found on his way back or even the remaining indivisible spoils.
The three Arab regions adjacent to foreigners suffered great weakness and inferiority. The people
there were either masters or slaves, rulers or subordinates. Masters, especially the foreigners, had
claim to every advantage; slaves had nothing but responsibilities to shoulder. In other words,
arbitrary autocratic rulership brought about encroachment on the rights of subordinates, ignorance,
oppression, iniquity, injustice and hardship, and turning them into people groping in darkness and
ignorance, viz., fertile land which rendered its fruits to the rulers and men of power to extravagantly
dissipate on their pleasures and enjoyments, whims and desires, tyranny and aggression. The tribes
living near these regions were fluctuating between Syria and Iraq, whereas those living inside Arabia
were disunited and governed by tribal conflicts and racial and religious disputes.
They had neither a king to sustain their independence nor a supporter to seek advice from, or
depend upon, in hardships.
The rulers of Hijaz, however, were greatly esteemed and respected by the Arabs, and were
considered as rulers and servants of the religious centre. Rulership of Hijaz was, in fact, a mixture of
secular and official precedence as well as religious leadership. They ruled among the Arabs in the
name of religious leadership and always monopolized the custodianship of the Holy Sanctuary and
its neighbourhood. They looked after the interests of Al-Ka‘bah visitors and were in charge of putting
Abraham’s code into effect. They even had such offices and departments like those of the
parliaments of today. However, they were too weak to carry the heavy burden, as this evidently
came to light during the Abyssinian (Ethiopian) invasion.
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