بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

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(The Life of Ummu Sulaim [radhiyallahu ‘anha] #3)

As seen previously, Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) had great concern for the Deen of her son, Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). It was on account of this concern that she had risked the wrath of her husband and made her son recite the kalimah, entering him into the fold of Islam.

It was this same motherly concern for the Deen and upbringing of her son that prompted Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) to take Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) to Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), when Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was still a young boy of ten years, and ask Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) to accept him as a khaadim (special attendant).

Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) mentions, “My mother took me to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). She had used half her scarf to clothe the lower half of my body, and the other half to make a shawl for the upper half of my body. When we came to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), she said, ‘This is Unais (small Anas), my son. I brought him to you so that he may serve you. Thus, make du‘aa for him.’ Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) therefore made du‘aa for me saying, ‘O Allah! Grant him abundant wealth and children!’ By Allah! My wealth is indeed abundant, and my children and grandchildren are almost a hundred in total.” (Saheeh Muslim #2481) Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) also made du‘aa for the forgiveness of Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) and for him to enjoy a lengthy life. Hence, it is reported that Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) lived for approximately ninety nine to one hundred and seven years. (Takmilatu Fathil Mulhim vol. 5 pg. 232)

In another narration, Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) says, “Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) came to Madeenah Munawwarah when I was ten years old, and he left the world when I was twenty years old. My ‘mother and aunt’ (Ummu Haraam [radhiyallahu ‘anha]) would constantly urge and encourage me to serve Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam).” (Saheeh Muslim #2029)

On one occasion, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) visited the home of Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha). In the eagerness to honour Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) as a blessed guest and entertain him, Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) immediately presented him with dates and ghee. However, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) said, “Return your ghee to its vessel, and your dates to its receptacle, for I am fasting.” Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) thereafter stood in a corner of the home and performed nafl salaah, after which he made du‘aa for Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) and her family. Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) then said to Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), “O Rasul of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! I have a special request!” When Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) enquired as to what it was, she replied, “(A special du‘aa for) your khaadim (attendant), Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu).” At her request, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) made a special du‘aa for Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) describes this du‘aa and its acceptance saying, “Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) neither left any goodness of the Aakhirah or this world, except that he made du‘aa for me to be blessed with it. Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) said in his du‘aa, ‘O Allah! Bless him with wealth and children, and grant him barakah in it.’ I am thus among those Ansaar who possess the most wealth.” Furthermore, due to the special du‘aa that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) made for him to have abundant children, it is reported that before Hajjaaj bin Yusuf came to Basrah (in the year 75 A.H. when Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was over eighty years old), Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) had already buried more than one hundred and twenty of his own children (not grandchildren)! (Saheeh Bukhaari #1982 and Fathul Baari vol. 4 pg. 287)

Abul ‘Aaliyah (rahimahullah) has mentioned that Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) had an orchard that would bear fruit twice in the year (whereas the norm is that trees bear fruit once a year, during season), and there was sweet basil in his orchard from which the fragrance of musk could be perceived. (Sunan Tirmizi #3833)

Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) once came to Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) while he was playing with some youngsters. On arriving, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) greeted them with salaam and sent Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) on an errand. On account of the errand, Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was delayed in returning to his mother. When he eventually returned home, his mother asked, “What delayed you?” Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) replied, “Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) sent me on an errand.” Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) asked, “What was his errand?” To this question, Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) answered, “It is a secret.” Hearing this, Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) instantly said, “Never divulge the secret of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) to anyone.” (Saheeh Muslim #2482)   

Lessons:

1. Every mother wants the very best for her child. However, not every mother knows what is truly best for her child. Hence, many mothers place all emphasis on their son’s or daughter’s secular education, thinking this to be the key to securing a bright future. Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) correctly understood that there could be no greater investment for her son than for him to be placed in the blessed company and service of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam). Her wisdom and foresight in this regard undoubtedly paid off, as Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu), on account of his mother’s efforts, enjoyed the exclusive du‘aa of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), which benefited him in this world and the next. Similarly, every mother should aspire for her child to be blessed with the opportunity to spend time in the company of the pious rightly guided ‘Ulama and in the service of Deen, as it is hoped that he will win their coveted du‘aas. Fuethermore, this environment will have a positive effect on the child and will be a means of barakah for him.

2. Ummu Sulaim (radhiyallahu ‘anha) was particular regarding instilling values in her son, Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu). Hence, when he guarded the secret of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), she was extremely happy and reminded him to never divulge it to anyone. As a result, when Anas (radhiyallahu ‘anhu) was narrating this incident to his student, Thaabit (rahimahullah), then even though it was many years later and Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) had already left this world, he still did not divulge the secret of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) to his student.

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