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Hijr bin Adi al-Kindi

He was known as Hijr al-Khayr, His Kunya was Abu Abd al-Rahman b. Adi, b. al-Harith b. Amru b. Hijr, He was given the nickname (ie, laqab) of Akil al-Mirar. He was the king of the Kindis. It was said that he was the son of Adi b. Mu'awiya b. Jubla b. Adi b. Rabi'a b. Mu'awiya al-Akramin. He belonged to Kinda.1

Hijr was notable companion from the companions of Ali nd his son Al-Hasan, peace be on them. He was a lord from the lords of the Muslims in Kufa.

Hijr nd his brother Hani b. Adi came to the Prophet, may Allah bless Him and his family. In his book al-Isti'ab, b. Abd al-Bisr al-Maliki sadi: "Hijr was among the excellent Companions, and his age was less than their old ones." In his book Asad al-Ghaba fi Tamyiz al-Sahaba,' b. al-Athir has mentioned Him with words similar to these ones. In his book al-Mustadrak, al-Hakim has described Him as: "the monk of the Companions of Mohammed, may Allah bless Him and his family."

Hijr worshipped (Allah) to the extent that when he made ritual impurity, he perfomed the ritual ablution; when he performed the ritual ablution, he prayed. He performed one thousand rak'as a day. His religious piety was apparent, and his supplication was accepted.2 He was among the chosen reliable figures. He preferred the hereafter to the life in this world to the extent that he subjected his life to killing refusing to renounce his Imam. He had a high social position.

Hijr was in the army that conquered Sham (Syria), and in the army that conquered Qadisiya (a city in Iraq). He took part in the Battle of the Camel headed by Ali. He was the commander of Kinda at the Battle of Siffin, and the commander of the left wing of the army at the Battle of al-Nahrwan. He was the brave man who defeated al-Dahhak b. Qays in the western part of Tadmur. It was he who said: "We are the children of war and approprate for it. We start it and end it. We have known it (ie, war) and it has known us."

Hijr was the first patient martyr in Islam.

Mu'awiya b. Abu Sufyan killed Hijr and six of is companions at Marj Athra, twelve mile far from Damascus in the year 51 A.H. Up till now, Hijr's grave is apparent and famous. There is a firm dome on it. Old marks can be seen on the dome that is beside a wide mosque. Hijr's companons who were killed with him are in his shrime. We will mention them one by one.

Zyyad b. Abih demolished Hijr's house in Kufa.

The Cause of his Killing

Hijr opposed al-Mughira b. Shu'ba and Zyyad b. Abih when they cursed Ali peace be on Him. In this connection he said to them: "I testify that whom you dispraise is worthier of the outstanding merit, and whom you praise is worthier of dispraise." When Hijr said openly these words of his, most people agreed with Him on that and said: "By Allah, Hijr has said the truth and kept his words."

As for al-Mughira b. Shu'ba, he knew that high spirits that made Hijr as an excellent companion, as a leader from the the great figures of Ali in Kufa, and as an Arab Emir who inherited the crown from his close grandfathers. al-Mughira had heard with his own ear when the people supported Hijr's summons paying no attention to any force, nor were they afraid of the wrath of the ruler. So he thought that it was better for Him to be slow towards the affairs of Hijir. and to apologize to his advisers who provoked Him to punish Hijr. Then al-Mughira said to his advsers: "I have killed Hijr." How have done that?" asked the advisers." Al-Mughira asnwered:" An emir will come after me. Hijr will think that the emir is similar to me. Hijr will say to Him similar to what you have heard. So the emir will punish Him immediately, and then will kill Him through an evil way." During his attitude towards Hijr, al-Mughira pretended to be wise. Also he pretended to be wise towards Sa'sa'a b. Sohan during the discord which was created by al-Mustawarad b. Alafa al-Khariji (ie, the Kharijite) in the year 43 A.H. al-Mughira said to Sa'sa'a: "Be careful! I have heard that you spread openly that outstanding merits of Ali. That is because I know all the excellent qualities of Ali. Rather I know them more than you do. However, this ruler (Mu'awiya) has appeared. He has forced us to show the people Ali's defects. We leave many things from what he has ordered us (to mention). We mention the things which we regard as precautionary stimulation (taqiya) to save our lives from these people (ie, the Umayyads)."3

When al-Mughira b. Shu'ba died in the year 50-51 A.H, b. Sumayya (ie, Zyyad b. Abih) became governor of Kufa. So the latter wanted to serve his claimed Umyyad lineage through killing Hijr b. Adi to relieve the Umayyads of the greatest of all troublemakers against them. However, he forgot that the blood of HIjr would go on making troubles to the Umayyads throughout their history as long as the people knew these two names (ie, Hijr's name and Mu'awiya's name).

The new governor (ie, Sumayya) elaborated friday sermon to the extent that there was no time for Friday prayers that had a limited time. So Hijr, who always attended their (ie, the Umayyad's) Friday sermon and prayers, said: "the Prayer!" Still Zayyd continue his sermon. Hijr was afraid that the obligatory prayers would escape Him, so he took a handful of stones. Then he rose to perfom the prayers and the people rose with Him.

Abu Abd al-Rahman (ie, Hijr b. Adi) who had a high social position, and worshipping asectic spirit refused to bargain with the Umayyads or flatter them concerning his religion. He thought that there was the rest of the companions of Al-Hasan among the people. He reminded them of Al-Hasan and opposed the Umayyads before them to make them follow his example. In this way he opposed the Umayyads to support the usurped right to authority, and he struggled against them through his tongue to defend his religion, his Imam, and his prayers as he did against them through his sword during the Islamic conquests.

Hijr's crime list, according to the Umayyads' custom, contained: he opposes cursing Ali, peace be on Him. He wants the prayers to be performed at their exact times, and nothing more than that.

Zyyad summoned his obedient servants who sold their consciences for pleasures. Among them were Amr b. Sa'd (who killed al-Husayn, peace be on Him), al-Mudhir b. al-Zubayr, SHimr b. Dhi al-Jawshan al-Amiri, Isma'il and Ishaq (the two sons of Talha b. Abd Allah), Khalid b. Arfata, Shibth b. Rib'i, Hajjar b. Abjard, Amru b. al-Hajjaj, Zajr b. Qays, and the like of these persons who divorced manhood three times. They were seventy men. In his book Tarikh, vol.6, pp.150-1,' al-Tabari counted them one by one. He distinguished Abu Burda b. Abu Musa al-Ash'ari from them, for the latter was the weakest of them with Him (ie,al-Tabari) or he was the strongest of them with Mu'awiya who ordered Him to write:

"In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. This is what Abu Burda b. Abu Musa al-Ash'ari has testified for Allah the Lord of the worlds. I (ie, Abu Burda) testify that Hijr b. Adi has refused obedience, left the united people (Jam'a), cursed the Caliph summoned (the people to wage) war (against Him), gathered groups of people and summoned them to break the pledge of allegiance, and disbelieved openly in Allah (the Great and Almighty).

Then Zyyad said to the seventy persons; "Confirm this testimony. Indeed, by Allah, I will do my best to cut off the thread (of hope) of this foolish traitor!" Seventy persons from the notables and the children of the houses in Kufa testified this traitorous foolish document. Then Zyyad wrote may letters to Mu'awiya concerning Hijr. So Mu'awiya wrote to Him: "Tie Him (ie, Hijr) up with the iron and send Him to me."

It is necessary for us to remember now the backrounds of this group of people, who belonged to the houses in Kufa, towards the matter of Al-Hasan b. Ali, peace be on them, during the days of his succession to authority. It was they who deserted from the Camp of Maskan, provoked the people at the Camp Mada'ini (against Al-Hasan), and wrote to Mu'awiya to desert Al-Hasan and to hand Him over. Therefore who refused obedience, left the united people, and broke the pledge of allegiance Hijr b. Adi or they?

Then we have to remember the attitude of these persons themselves during the tradegy of al-Husayn, peace be on Him, at the Battle of Karbala. They were then the swords of the Umayyad tyrants who were reponsible for those poinful events whose atrocities have no limit in the history of Arabs and Islam.

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1. (The tribe of ) Kinda belong to the banu of Kahlan. Their homeland was the Yemen. Then many of their leaders moved to Iraq. Kahlan and Himyar were the two sons of Saba. Saba was the name which brought both tribes together. It was said: "The Arabs regarded the houses with glory and honor after the house of Hashim b. Abd Manaf as four houses. They were the house of Qays al-Fazazi, (the house of) the Darimiyyin, (the house of) banu Shayban, and the house of the Yemen, who belonged to the banu of al-Harith b. Ka'b." As for Kinda, they are not regarded as some of the peole of the houses. Rather they were kings. Among them was al-Malik al-Dilil (ie, Umru' al-Qays). The had authority in the Yemen and al-HIjaz. The glory of Kinda lasted during the time of Islam. Some of the Kindis took part in the conquests and the revolts; some of them were governors; some of them were judges such as Husayn b. Hasan al-Hijri; some of them were poets such as Ja'far b. Affan al-Makfuf, the poet of the Shi'a. Hani b. al-Ja'ad b. Adi, the nephew of Hijr, was among the noble figures in Kufa, Ja'far b. al-Ash'ath and his son al-Abbas b. Ja'far were among the Shi'a of Imam Abu Al-Hasan (ie, Musa, b. Ja'far) and his son al-Rida, peace be on them. As for al-Ash'ath b. Qays al-Kindi, he was the greatest of all the hypocrites in Kufa. He became Muslim, then he renounced Islam after the Prophet. Then he became Muslim, and Abu Bakr accepted his Islam. Abu Bakr married Him his sister who was the mother of Mohammed b. al-Ash'ath. Imam Al-Hasan married al-Ash'ath's daughter whom Mu'awiya provoked to give Al-Hasan poison to drink.

2. In his book al-Isaba fi Tamyiz al-shahaba, b. al-Athir said: "Major ritual impurity hit Him (ie, Hijr) while he was a prisoner. So he said to the guard: Give me my water to pure myself with it. 'I am afraid that you will die of thirst, so Mu'awiya will kill me, said the guard. He (ie, b. la Athir) said Hijr prayed to Allah (for rain). His companions said to His: Ask Allah to save us. So he said: O Allah save us."

3. Al-Tabari, Tarikh, vol.6, p.108.

Adopted from the book: "Sulh al-Hasan (a.s.)" by: "Sheykh Radi al-Yasin"

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