Sayiditina Asma bint Abi Bakr (RA)
Today we focus on another incredible daughter of Abu Bakr (RA). A phenomenal, awe inspiring sahabiyah. She was surrounded by a family of exceptional believers, her father was As Siddeeq, her sister Ummul Mu'mineen, she was married to a member of the Asharah Mubasharah and she birthed the first child to be born to the muhaajireen.
She spent in her life in the obedience of Allah and servitude to the people around her. It wasn’t an easy task, no, in fact I believe that she faced a multitude of challenges from the advent of Islam until her death. This is what is so inspiring about her, that she didn’t give up, or lose hope or stop doing, she continued for the pleasure of Allah.
Asma (RA) embraced Islam when it was in it’s newborn stages, she was about the 18th person to accept Islam. During this time the Muslims had to face many hardships and persecution at the hands of the Quraish. After a lot of forbearance, Nabi (saw) and Abu Bakr (RA) left for hijrah. Here Asma (RA) faced her first big test. Her grandfather, in an attempt to show concern for her and the rest of their family, complained to her and said that her father had abandoned them without any provisions. Now since her grandfather was blind, asma (RA) gathered some pebbles, covered them with a sheet, and then led her grandfather to feel them. She reassured him that her father had in fact left sufficient funds for them. At this time, according to history books, she was a young girl who had recently gotten married. She could have complained to her grandfather about their situation, but instead she courageously covered up for her father.
During hijrah, when Nabi(SAW) and Abu Bakr (RA) needed provisions, she prepared some, tore up her waist cloth and carried it up to them in the cave. She bravely went out, most likely in her early stages of pregnancy, and ensured that Nabi( SAW) and her father were taken care of.
Her hijrah itself was another major test. She had to endure a long, arduous journey, in the desert while being pregnant. She had barely reached Quba when she felt the pangs of labour and gave birth to Sayidina Abdullah bin Zubair (RA). His birth was a joyous occasion for the Muslims, as he was the first child to be born to the muhaajireen after hijrah. For me, a woman who has experienced pregnancy, and for many other women out there, I feel like this sacrifice was a tremendous one. The difficulty and challenges that a woman experiences during pregnancy is not trivial, even Allah Ta’ala mentions it in the Quraan. Asma (RA) undertook the arduous journey while being pregnant, just for the pleasure of Allah. It is truly amazing how much the Sahaba (RA) sacrificed just so that Deen could reach us.
Continuing with the life of Asma (RA), we find that her marriage with Zubair (RA) was a difficult one. Like any daughter, she complained to her father who encouraged her to stay in the service of her husband. She obeyed him, but was eventually divorced by Zubair (RA). This did not deter her efforts of Deen, and she continued looking after her children and spending freely in the path of Allah. She used to spend, and never kept anything for the future, subhanallaah.
Towards the latter part of her life, her son Abdullah was the leader of Makkah. Due to major disputes in the Islamic empire at that time, he was at war with Hajaj bin Yusuf. Most of Abdullah (RA)s supporters had abandoned him, and he was nearing defeat. He approached his mother for advice, and she chastised him, and advised him to go forth and fight in the path of Allah bravely. She even ordered him to remove his armour. Soon Abdullah (RA) was martyred and a few days later Asma (RA) passed away as well. Even though she was about 100 years old, she had not lost a single tooth, nor had her memory decayed in the least.
These last few days of her life show us just how much she was willing to sacrifice for the pleasure of Allah. She encourages her son to fight, she exhorts him to martyrdom. The same son that she endured a challenging pregnancy, is the same son that she’s willing to sacrifice foe Deen. All mothers love their children and want to protect them from all types of harm, but true love is encouraging and pushing our children towards Jannah, no matter how big the sacrifice might be.