Page 80 - Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum

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much that his tears fell on the Prophet’s face. The Prophet (Peace be upon him) immediately applied
his saliva on Abu Bakr’s foot and the pain went off on the spot. They confined themselves to this
cave for three nights, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. ‘Abdullah, the son of Abu Bakr would go to see
them after dusk, stay the night there, apprise them of the latest situation in Makkah, and then leave
in the early morning to mix with the Makkans as usual and not to draw the least attention to his
clandestine activities. ‘Amir bin Fuhairah, while in the company of other shepherds of Makkah
tending his master Abu Bakr’s flock, used to stole away unobserved every evening with a few goats
to the cave and furnished its inmates with a plentiful supply of milk.
Quraish, on the other hand, were quite baffled and exasperated when the news of the escape of the
two companions was confirmed. They brought ‘Ali to Al-Ka‘bah, beat him brutally and confined him
there for an hour attempting desperately to make him divulge the secret of the disappearance of the
two ‘fugitives’, but to no avail. They then went to see Asma’, Abu Bakr’s daughter, but here also
their attempts went in vain. While at her door Abu Jahl slapped the girl so severely that her earring
broke up.
The notables of Makkah convened an emergency session to determine the future course of action
and explore all areas that could help arrest the two men. They decided to block all avenues leading
out of Makkah and imposed heavy armed surveillance over all potential exits. A price of 100 camels
was set upon the head of each one. Horsemen, infantry and tracers of tracks scoured the country.
Once they even reached the mouth of the cave where the Prophet (Peace be upon him) and Abu
Bakr were hiding. When he saw the enemy at a very close distance, Abu Bakr whispered to the
Prophet (Peace be upon him): “What, if they were to look through the crevice and detect us?” The
Prophet (Peace be upon him) in his God-inspired calm replied:
“Silence Abu Bakr! What do you think of those two with whom the Third is Allâh.”
It was really a Divine miracle, the chasers were only a few steps from the cave.
For three days Muhammad (Peace be upon him) and Abu Bakr lived in the cave and Quraish
continued their frantic efforts to get hold of them.
Someone called ‘Abdullah bin Uraiquit, who had as yet not embraced Islam, but was trusted by Abu
Bakr, and had been hired by him as a guide, reached the cave after three nights according to a plan
bringing with him Abu Bakr’s two camels. His report satisfied the noble ‘fugitives’ that the search
had slackened. The opportunity to depart was come. Here Abu Bakr offered the Prophet (Peace be
upon him) the swift animal to ride on. The latter agreed provided that he would pay its price. They
took with them the food provisions that Asma’, daughter of Abu Bakr, brought and tied in a bundle
of her waistband, after tearing it into two parts, hence the appellation attached to her: “Asma ’ of the
two waistbands.” The Prophet (Peace be upon him), Abu Bakr and ‘Amir bin Fuhairah departed, and
their guide ‘Abdullah bin Uraiquit led them on hardly ever trodden ways along the coastal route.
That was in Rabi‘ Al-Awwal, 1st year A.H., i.e. September 622 A.D. The little caravan travelled
through many villages on their way to Quba’. In this context, it is relevant to introduce some
interesting incidents that featured their wearying journey:
1. One day they could find no shelter from the scorching heat so Abu Bakr (May Allah be
pleased with him) cast a glance and found a little shade beside a rock. He cleaned the
ground, spread his mantle for the Prophet(Peace be upon him) to lie on and himself went off
in search of food. He came across a shepherd, a bedouin boy, who was also seeking a
shelter. Abu Bakr asked him for some milk and took it to the Prophet (Peace be upon him),
cooled it with some water and waited till the Prophet (Peace be upon him) woke up and
quenched his thirst.
2. Whoever asked Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) about the identity of his
honourable companion, he would reply that he was a man who guided him on his way. The
questioner would think that Muhammad (Peace be upon him) was a guide, in terms of roads,
whereas Abu Bakr used to mean guide to the way of righteousness.
3. Quraish, as we have already mentioned, had declared that whoever would seize Muhammad
(Peace be upon him) would receive a hundred camels as reward. This had spurred many
persons to try their luck. Among those who were on the lookout for the Prophet (Peace be
upon him) and his companion in order to win the reward was Suraqah, the son of Malik. He,
on receiving information that a party of four, had been spotted on a certain route, decided
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