An-Nisa · Juz 5 · Qur'an Tafseer

The Blessings of Hijrah

As for blessings, an ayah from Surah al-Nahl says,

“And those who emigrated for [the cause of] Allah after they had been wronged – We will surely settle them in this world in a good place; but the reward of the Hereafter is greater, if only they could know.”

Surah an-Nisa ayah 100 deals with approximately the same subject. The word ‘muragham’ in the ayah is a verbal noun which means ‘to move from one land to the other’ and the place to which one moves and settles is also called ‘muragham’.

Both these ayaat quoted above tell us about the open and hidden blessings of hijrah where Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala has promised to everyone who migrates for the sake of Allah and His Messenger that He shall open new opportunities in the world for them and give them a good home to settle. As for the rewards and ranks of the Hereafter, they are beyond any reach of expectation or imagination.

World history bears witness that whoever has left his homeland for the sake of Allah, to him Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala has given a home far better than what he had earlier, far more honor and far more comfort. Ibraheem aalyhi sallam migrated to Syria from his homeland in Iraq. Allah gave him all those things. Musa aalyhi sallam and the Bani Israel migrated from Egypt, their homeland for the sake of Allah, then He gave them the land of Syria, a better homeland. Then, they got Egypt too. When Rasoolullah sallAllahu aalyhi wa sallam and his Companions left Makkah for the sake of Allah and His Messenger, these blessed emigrants found the best of shelter in Madina, far better than Makkah. There they had honor and power and peace and prosperity. Of course, this does not include the transitory hardship faced during the early period of hijrah. But, soon after that, the blessings, which were showered on these people and which continued through several generations, shall be the proper yardstick in this matter.

Events related to the poverty and hunger of Companions so well-known belong generally to the early period of hijrah; or, go as what can be called volitional acceptance of poverty, a dignified attitude of readiness to live with less (faqr). In other words, they just did not like worldly wealth and property as a result of which they lost no time in spending what they received, in the way of Allah. This was very much the state in which the Prophet sallAllahu aalyhi wa sallam lived. His lack of means and patience in hunger were simply voluntary. He just did not choose to be rich. Nonetheless, during the sixth year of hijrah, after the conquest of Khyber, things had changed and sufficient means of sustenance was available for the Prophet sallAllahu aalyhi wa sallam and his family. The same was the case with all righteous caliphs. When they reached Madina, Allah had given them everything they needed. But, when Islam needed their support, Abu Bakr came forward and donated everything he had in his house. The Mother of the Faithful, Zaynab radhiAllahu anha would give away all her stipend money to the poor and the needy and remain satisfied living indigently. For this reason, she was called ‘the Mother of the Needy’. On the other side, no less in number were the rich ones among the Companions who left wealth and property behind. There were many among the Companions who were poor in their home city of Makkah but Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala made them rich and happy after hijrah. Abu Huraira radhiAllahu anhu can be cited as a good example. When he was appointed the governor of a province, he used to enjoy talking about his past with unusual relish. He would formally address himself and say, “O Abu Huraira, you are the same man, the servant of a tribe. Your salary was what you could eat. Your duty was to walk with those who rode on a journey and your duty was to collect firewood for them when they broke their journey at a certain stage. Today, because of Islam, you are here, so high from so low, and they call you the Commander of the Faithful!”

In summation, it can be said that the world has openly witnessed the fulfillment of the promise Allah has made in the Qur’an. However, the ayah has put a condition that they must be true emigrants for the sake of Allah, a substantiation of hajaru fi-llah. This kind of emigrant should have not migrated for the sake of worldly wealth, office, power, recognition, honor or influence. Otherwise, in a hadeeth of al-Bukhari, the Prophet sallAllahu aalyhi wa sallam has also been reported to have said, “Those who migrate for the sake of Allah and His Messenger, their migration is precisely for Allah and His Messenger.” It means that this is the correct mode of hijrah the merits and blessings of which appear in the Qur’an. As for those who migrate to make money or marry a woman, their compensation against hijrah is exactly what they migrated for.

In our time, some groups of emigrants who are living in distress are either in that transitory stage of the early period of hijrah which is usually marked with hardships, or they are not emigrants in the real sense. They should correct their intention and take charge of the circumstance under which they live. After this intention and their corresponding deeds have been corrected, they shall witness the truth of Allah’s promise with their own eyes.

[SOURCE: Maaruf-ul-Qur’an by Mufti Muhammad Shafi Usmani]

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