4.135 O You who believe! stand out firmly for justice, as witnesses to Allah, even as against yourselves, or your parents, or your kin, and whether it be (against) rich or poor: for Allah can best protect both. Follow not the lusts (of your hearts), lest You swerve, and if You distort (justice) or decline to do justice, verily Allah is well-acquainted with all that You do.
5.8 O ye who believe! stand out firmly for Allah, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice. Be just: that is next to piety: and fear Allah. For Allah is well-acquainted with all that ye do.
Although there have been many incidents that happened during the time of Rasoolullah (S) in this regard, let me relate to you an incident which happened long after the demise of our Holy Prophet (S) to prove how much of his teachings, his character and his life had influenced and ingrained into the community of the first generation of Muslims. This was the period of the 2nd Caliph of Islam – Hazrath Omar Khathab (R).
One day Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) after the mid-day prayer was giving a sermon in the mosque, a Jewish Lady walks in with a baby in her arms. and she said:
“O Amirul Mu’mineen, Commander of the Faithful, I have come to you seeking Justice.
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) replied: Dear lady, that is what we dispense here – please tell me what your problem is.”
She said: “Over a year ago – while walking along the road at night, I was accosted by a young man, who was in a state of drunkenness – I was helpless – he harmed and committed an offence on me to outrage my modesty – and today I am here with a baby in my arms. I had undergone untold sufferings during this past year – and at last managed to trace the offender – He was none other than your son “Abu Sahmah”.
Everybody was stunned – there was pin drop silence in the congregation. Then
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) asked: “Are you certain that it was my son Abu Sahmah who was drunk and who committed the offence on you?”
The Jewish Lady said: “ I am very certain O Ameerul Mu’mineen- I had verified it, confirmed it and made quite certain before I came here to present my case.”
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) tells the congregation “ None of you should leave this place, until I return.”
The congregation was dumbfounded. The Son of the mightiest Caliph of the Muslim empire is being accused of drunkenness and rape.
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) goes home and finds his son having his meals – he says : “Son, this may be your last meal – quickly finish it and come with me to go to the mosque.”
Abu Sahmah was stunned – he could not eat and neither could he swallow what was in his mouth. The father then asks – “Abu Sahmah, about a year ago were you in a drunken state?” – No answer.
“Whilst in this state did you commit an offence on a Jewish lady to outrage her modesty?” – No Answer.
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) New that his son was guilty of the offense. He grabs him by the hand and drags him to the mosque.
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) now asks the Jewish Lady in the presence of the congregation: “Is this the Abu Sahmah you were referring to?”
The Jewish Lady said: “Yes, O Amirul Mu’mineen, this is the very sameAbu Sahma who commited the offense on me to outrage my modesty.”
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) said without hesitation : Under Islamic Law, I declare that he be given 80 Lashes for drunkenness and 100 Lashes for harming a woman. And both punishments should be given now.”
Look at the laws around us and around the world – Whatever the offense you may commit under the influence of liquor you can go scot free – because they say, that you were intoxicated and you did not know what you were doing.
Islam takes a completely different stand : When you were in the process of consuming the liquor you were conscious.
The Proximate Cause in legal parlance using Latin terminology – it is – Causa Causans – The causes of all causes, The proximate that sets in motion a train of events – in this case it is the intoxicant – The first punishment is for taking the prohibited intoxicant – 80 Lashes.
Thereafterf, you are punished severely for every crime you may commit under the influence of liquor – This is Justice in Islam.
Now, When the order was given for the implementation of both the punishments – Immediately the congregation protested. They said: “He is a young boy, He cannot bear both the punishments – Just break up the punishments – and give it to him in instalments.”
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) : said: “No, Both the punishments will go together.
His son was taken to the courtyard – and his arms were raised and tied onto two poles. He gives the whip to the executioner and says – “I want you to give him the hardest whipping ever given to any human being – or else I will take the whip away from you.”
The crowd was stunned, speechless.
The whipping now began – one by one – the hardest whipping ever – The skin on the back split open – blood started spurting everywhere – whip after whip – peaces of flesh started flying everywhere.
People sat there and stared dumb-founded.
On the 179th Lash The boy was about to collapse - Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) stayed the lashing – went upto his son and said:
“I do not think that you will survive this punishment – but when you pass away and when you meet my prophet (S) tell him that your father Omar had established the law of the Quran on earth. Tell him that he had established the Sunnah of the Prophet on Earth,”
As he said it, the boy collapsed and breathed his last.
Inna Lillaahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Raji’oon.
The body was brought down from the scaffold - Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) went and sat on the ground lifted his son’s head with both hands and placed it on his lap. Then tears started streaming down the face of Hazrath Omar Khathab (R).
The People said: “O Omar, we told you not to give both the punishments together, we told you he will not survive the punishment, You did not listen to us – now why are you crying?”
Hazrath Omar Khathab (R) said: O people, you have misunderstood these tears of mind. These tears are streaming down for Four Reasons:
These are Tears of Happiness – that I have established the laws of Allah – because of the fear of Allah.
These are Tears of Happiness -= that I have established the Great Sunnah – The tradition of the Holy Prophet (S).
These are Tears of Happiness because I have saved my son from Eternal Hell Fire.
and lastly, He is my son, I will never see him again and hence this tear.
People were thunderstruck – There was pin drop silence.
The body of Abu Sahmah was taken, washed, shrouded and taken for burial.
After the burial – remember there was One Lash remaining – you do not lash a body after death – So Umar (R) ordered that the last lash be given on the grave.
If the rulers can establish this Justice – We guarantee you that definitely there will be peace. Even if people are starving they will not rebel – because they know, that you too are starving.
Just reflect on what is happening around us – What his happening around the world – think, reflect, ponder, meditate and try to understand.
Jazak Allah Khair for sharing this virtuous historic event with us. I didn't know about this event before. I was searching on the net for details after hearing about this for the first time from one of my friend. I have read few other posts in different forums and found some differences in narration of the event.
When I read your post it sounds like Umar (pbuh) first came to know about this event from a Jewish women and Abu Sahmah (pbuh) was silent on the questions from Umar (pbuh) which means he didn't want to admit or didn't have courage to admit what he has done.
But according to the other post it was quite opposite. I am pasting it here so that others can read as well. Only reason I am sharing it is because that narration actually shows not only Umar (pbuh) was a just ruler, his son was also a true believer and respectful to the Islamic justice.
Mawlana Amin Ahsan Islahi has pleaded to this hadith in one of his discussions on the same topic which forms part of his book Islami Riyasat (The Islamic State). I believe that the authenticity of this narrative may not be that forceful for it does not appear in the main sources. It should be taken as one of the historical narratives that are often considered and explained if they do not out rightly contradict the basic sources.
Following is the extract from the book Islami Riyasat:
Once his son, ‘Abd al-Raḥmān, drank and become inebriated. Later on, he presented himself before ‘Amr b. al-‘Āṣ, the governor of Egypt and confessed his crime. He requested the governor to sentence him to the prescribed punishment. ‘Amr b. al-‘Āṣ (rta) says: “I tried to dismiss ‘Abd al-Raḥmān after a little rebuke. But he insisted that if he was not sentenced according to the sharī‘ah, he would go back to Madīnah and complain before his father. I feared that if I let him go unpunished he would go directly to the caliph and report to him who would instantly dismiss me. This made me punish ‘Abd al-Raḥmān in my house. Later on he shaved his head off in a corner of my house. I did not inform the caliph about this issue. But after a few days later the following letter from the Caliph reached me.
This is from the chief of the believers, servant of God, ‘Umar (rta) to the Sinner son of the Sinner. Your have baffled me by daring to break the promise. I believe you deserve removal from governorship. You dared to implement the punishment on ‘Abd al-Raḥmān in the yard of your house and to shave off his head under your roof. While you well know that this kind of leniency is not my attitude. ‘Abd al-Raḥmān was but one of your subjects. You were obliged to deal with him the way you deal with the ordinary subjects. But you have dealt with him considering him son of the Caliph. While you know that, with regards to justice, I do not show leniency to any. Now I order you to send ‘Abd al-Raḥmān instantly to Madīnah so that I can make him taste what he did.
‘Amr b. al-‘Āṣ (rta) says: “Afterwards I sent ‘Abd al-Raḥmān to the Caliph and confessed that I had committed a great mistake by punishing Abd al-Raḥmān inside the walls of my house while I would not deal with other Muslims and the dhimmīs this way. I sent a written confession and ‘Abd al-Raḥmān under the custody of ‘Abd Allāh b. ‘Umar (rta).” Since ‘Abd al-Raḥmān was not allowed to use but a saddle on the back of his conveyance he could not move easily over his mount. When they reached Madīnah, ‘Abd al-Raḥmān b. ‘Awf (rta) tried to intercede with the Caliph. He requested the Caliph to forgive his son for he had already been punished. ‘Umar (rta) did not consider his requests. When ‘Abd al-Raḥmān (rta) saw the rage of his father, he cried and pleaded that he was unwell. He lamented that his father was about to kill him. It has been narrated that ‘‘Umar (rta) punished ‘Abd al-Raḥmān while he was still unwell. He was put in custody till he fell ill and died.
Haykal, al-Fārūq ‘Umar, 2: 197
Ibid., 2: 198. I have taken this story from Muḥammad Ḥusayn (rta) Haykal’s Al-Fārūq ‘Umar. The author maintains that ‘Abd al-Raḥmān was punished again. I, however, doubt this. Some scholars have explained that ‘Umar (rta) did not sentence him to the sharī‘ah punishment again. He only punished him just as a father disciplines his child. This I believe is correct.
Author: Tariq Mahmood Hashmi
Last edited by MMFI; 25-05-14 at 02:54 AM.