In The Shib.... Days Of Sever Hardship

The polytheists became very angry when the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) became so powerful and his mission spread widely that many people of different classes and countries believed in it sincerely to a degree that they preferred dying to give up their new belief when they were punished with severest kinds of torture. In fact they tolerated pain as if they enjoyed pleasures.


Quraysh began to think and think create tricks and look for new plots that might be of use to restrain the spreading mission and to suppress its voice, which entered the hearts without asking permission. The Quraysh tried to put out this flame, to silence this voice and to cut this twig but  returned empty-handed because Mohammed (s.a.w.w.) was safeguarded by his uncle and his men. He was in a strong fortress that no storm could shake.


The Quraysh resisted the Prophets companions, and tortured them but it found itself in front of iron that couldn’t be notched, rocks that couldn’t be crumble and mountains that couldn’t be shaken. In that critical situation and that difficult distress on of the devils of Quraysh thought of a satanic idea. It would satisfy their furious grudge and get them to their sought aim. They thought of blockade against whoever assisted and protected Mohammed (s.a.w.w.).


The Quraysh wrote down a covenant including some articles to be as one hand against the Hashemites to be in a state of war against them without any truce, nor to marry from them and not to let them marry from them. 


Not to sell or buy from each other, not accept any peace with them at all and carry out these conditions without a bit of mercy or pity.They signed the sheet of the covenant and hanged a copy on the wall of the Kaaba. This was after seven years of the mission.


When Hazrat Abu Talib (as) knew what the Quraysh had decided he criticized it and warned them of bad wars and disasters to take place. He recited a poem about that situation; here are some verses of it:


They expect from us a thing,

They won’t  get without striking and stabbing with sharp swords.

They hope we give them Mohammed to be killed,

Before the heads are dyed with blood!

By the House of Allah (s.w.t.) you have told lies!

It won’t be until your heads are split  and your skulls thrown

In Hateem and Zamzam,

Kinship is perished, a wife forgets her husband and one is killed

After one; that is your hatred, oppression deviation,

Committing sins and wronging a Prophet inviting to guidance

And a matter revealed by the Almighty

Don’t think we hand him over to you,

His likes will never be handed over by any people.


The entire  poem show the commitment of Hazrat Abu Talib (as) towards the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and his mission but the last few verses (in red) need the readers special attention. These words clearly show the faith of Hazrat Abu Talib (as) and his belief in the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and his mission being the matter revealed by Allah (s.w.t.).


Wasn’t this but a clear declaration of Hazrat Abu Talib (as) and indication of his true faith in the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.). Would anyone, who accused Hazrat Abu Talib (as) of being an unbeliever, be fair in his judgment? Would the accuser himself express his faith more eloquently than Hazrat Abu Talib (as). 


Hazrat Abu Talib (as) pondered thoughtfully and founded himself in a critical situation and difficult distresses. He had to make up his mind and to take the final decision. He called for the men of the Hashemites. They decided to go to the Shib (mountain pass) to be safe from the Quraysh, who were determined to carry out the unjust covenant.


All the Hashemites submitted to Hazrat Abu Talib (as) thought and they all followed him except his deviated brother Abu Lahab , who supported the Quraysh against his kin.


The days passed without any glow of hope or relief. They were in extreme distress. Hunger left its bad lines upon their bodies. Everyone, who would think of helping them even with a crumb of bread, would be considered as a treacherous criminal by the Quraysh and then he would be punished severely.


So the Hashemites became in a miserable condition. Hunger harmed them extremely until they were obliged to eat the leaves of the trees. In spite  of the Hazrat Abu Talib (as) was very watchful and careful for his nephew that he might be a victim of a secret plot hatched  by the Quraysh.


Whenever night came and it was time for sleeping, he spread the bed of his nephew before the sight of all. He remained awake until all had slept soundly; he took his ephew to the bed of his son Hazrat Ali (as) and took his son to the bed of his nephew that if anyone had an evil will, his son Ali (as) would be the victim and the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.)  would be saved.


What a great sacrifice it was. Let history record it with shiny letters in order to be an eternal example of sacrifice, altruism, love, faith and belief!.


The malevolent justified Hazrat Abu Talib (as) defense and jihad to safeguard his nephew as a mater of kinship. Was his nephew Mohammed loser to him that his son Hazrat Ali (as) ?  So why did he try to sacrifice his son for his nephew?


They ignored that the zealotry of religion was stronger than the zealotry of kingship. Unless Hazrat Abu Talib (as) believed in the prophecy of his nephew, he wouldn’t sacrifice his  dearest son for him.


Whenever Hazrat Abu Talib’s (as) feelings were affected during the period of the blockade, he expressed his bitter pains with poetry:


Didn't you know that we have found Mohammed as prophet,

Like Moses, it was mentioned in the first books

He is to beloved by people,

Allah(s.w.t.) has imposed upon people loving him!




By the House of Allah(s.w.t.)

We will never forsake Ahmad whatever distresses we get.



We wont be tired of war until it becomes tired of us,

And we don’t complain whatever distresses we face!

But we are people of reason and prudence,

When the minds of others fly of terrors.


The first verse of the poem were enough to confirm Hazrat Abu Talib (as) knowledge about the divine religions and his faith in the prophets and the books of Allah (s.w.t.). He had never been a polytheist at all. He had believed in the monotheism since the beginnings of his life.


It would be better to quote his passage of one of his poems that he said during the stay in the Shib. We just quote below  the verse that express the deep faith and the clear belief of Hazrat Abu Talib (as).


Don’t  you know that byoctt is a sin,

And a reasonless matter of distress?

The way of guidance will be known tomorrow,

And the ease of life wont last for ever

Don’t mistreat Mohammed (s.a.w.w.),

And don’t follow the deviants.

You wish to kill him; your wishes are like dreams of a sleeper.

By Allah (s.w.t.) you never kill him unless you see picking of the skulls!

You pretend that we give you Mohammed (s.a.w.w.),

Before we compete and attack,.

He is a prophet; revelation comes to him from his God,

And whoever denies, the loss will be great then!


He criticized the Quraysh about the boycott, which would defame and disgrace it and it would bring it lasting distress. Then he warned it of the bad end it was going to face as a result of its bad doings. Hazrat Abu Talib (as) has clearly stated that those who oppose the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) are the deviants and he has asserted his unconditional support to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.). 


The last two lines of the poem are note worthy where Hazrat Abu Talib (as) clearly states that his nephew is a Prophet and revelation comes to him from his God. Now would it be fair to believe that a person who exhorts others to believe in the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) and to follow his path or else they would be in loss in the hereafter would himself not do so.???? 


These words of Hazrat Abu Talib (as) shows nothing but clear faith, submission and acknowledgement of the prophecy of his nephew. Non but a s sick mind a prejudiced thinking and an illegitimate birth would force a person to think otherwise.


Days changed to months and months to years and the suffering of the Hashemites in the Shi’b continued. Three years passed and this extremely miserable life remained as it was until a day came when Allah (s.w.t.) revealed to the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) that He had made the termite eat the document of the blockade hanged on the sall of the Kaaba except the Holy name of Allah(s.w.t.), which was left safe.


The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) conveyed this to Hazrat Abu Talib (as) who went to the Kaaba surrounded by some of the Hashemites . He told the people that Allah (s.w.t.) had reveled to his nephew that the document which they had prepared has been destroyed by  termites except for the name of Allah (s.w.t.) 


He told them to bring the document and see it for themselves if he is correct and the document has actually been destroyed then they should accept that they were wrong and if he (Hazrat Abu Talib (as) ) is wrong and the document is safe then he would hand over his nephew to them and they would do with him whatever they wished.


When the document was brought truth prevailed and people saw that the entire document except for the name of Allah (s.w.t.) had been destroyed. Then a group of Quraysh annulled the blockade after finding that they were extremely unjust to the Hashemites, who returned to live their ordinary lives after three years of hunger pain and misery.


The fact that Hazrat Abu Talib (as) confidently agreed to what the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) had said and confidently went to challenge the Quraysh, showed his faith and belief in the truthfulness of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.) to such an extend that he offered the Quraysh that  he would hand over the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.)  to them and they were free to deal with him as they wished if he was wrong.


Hazrat Abu Talib (as)'s support to the Holy Prophet  (s.a.w.w) and his sever suffering in the Shib along with his entire family for a period of three years in which they were so distressed that they were forced to eat grass could not have simply come out of love for his nephew. It was only and only because of his deep faith in the Prophet hood of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.). A faith so firm and so deep rooted that he was ready to bear the hardships and torture meted out to his entire family rather than giving up his faith and deserting the Holy Prophet.