Rafed English

The Prophet's Adherence to the Peace Treaty of Hodaybiyah

[Amongst several others, one of the conditions of the treaty of Hodaybiyah was that if anyone left Quraysh and migrated from Mecca to Medina to join the Prophet Muhammad and his Muslim followers without the permission of his guardian, then he would have to be returned to the Quraysh. However, if one of the followers of the Prophet wanted to go back to the Quraysh in Mecca he should be allowed to do so. The Prophet had in principle accepted this condition, as well as other conditions of the treaty and was ready to sign the peace deal.]

However some of the companions objected to this and said:

'Glory be to God, how can we send a man back to the Polytheists when he has come to us as a Muslim.' At this stage, suddenly, Abu Jandal ibn Suheil ibn Amr entered the gathering shackled. He had escaped from his father's prison in lower Mecca and put himself in the hands of the Muslims. He had committed no crime other than choosing Islam over Polytheism.

His father Suheil said: 'O Muhammad, this is the first person I demand that you return to me.' The Prophet said: 'We have not finished the document yet.' He said: 'Then I will never make peace with you ever.'

The Prophet said: 'Let him remain under our protection.' He said: 'I will not.'

The Prophet said: 'No, let it be so.' He said: 'I will not.'

In order to save the deal, Mukraz, a member of the Quraysh delegation that had come to negotiate and sign the pact, said:

'Yes, we give him over to your protection.' But Suheil refused this completely and made the whole peace treaty depend upon his son being delivered to him.

When Abu Jandal saw that he was to be returned to his father he said: 'O Muslims, am I to be returned to the Polytheists after I have come to you as a Muslim. Do you not see how I have been treated?' He had been tortured severely because of his belief in God. Some of the Muslims said: 'We will not return him.'

The Apostle of God stood up and took him by the hand and said: 'O God, you know that Abu Jandal is sincere, so relieve him and grant him a way out.' Then he approached the people and said: 'He is safe, and he will return to his father and mother. I wish to fulfil the conditions of the Quraysh.' Then he turned to Abu Jandal and said: 'O Abu Jandal, have patience and think of the afterlife. God will surely grant you and the rest of the Muslims with you relief and a way out. We have made a peace treaty with the Quraysh and given them our word and they have given us theirs. We will not act treacherously with them.'

Adopted from the book : "The Prophet Muhammad; a Mercy to the World" by : "Ayatullah Muhammad Sadiq al-Shirazi"

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