A few years ago, The Hindu Tamil Newspaper published tiny stories from The Holy Quran, I found the stories interesting. Once the series ended, I bought the book “The Greatest Stories from the Quran” which was the source of the stories, the book was well made and printed on glossy paper – and I learned a bit about Islam from the book. Later, I bought another book, titled “101 Sahabiyat Stories and Dua” from the same publisher (Good Word) for Rs 345 (USD 4.5)
Today, being the Eid festival, I thought it is befitting to read the book “101 Sahabiyat Stories and Dua”. This too was a hardbound one with thick glossy pages and colourful illustrations. There were about one-hundred stories, rather happenings in the life of the ladies associated with the Prophet Mohammad and were propagating Islam with him, these were females regarded with great respect by the followers. They included the Mothers of the Faithful(the wives of the Prophet), the Prophet’s daughters, and the early believers of Islam. The book defines Sahabiyats to be the women who had seen the Prophet Muhammed and believed in him.
We learn from the book, that Khadija bint Khuwaylid was Prophet’s first wife for over 25 years and till her death the only one to him. Before marrying Prophet she was a widower twice, much older than him, his employer and importantly the first Muslim. The couple had four daughters – Zaynab, Ruqayya, Umm Kulthum and Fathima. After Khadija’s death, Prophet married Sawda bint Zam’a, whose husband al-Sakran had died during their stay in Abyssinia. Later, Prophet married Aisha, the daughter of Abu Bak Siddiq and Umm Ruman – before the marriage, an angel had presented to the Prophet, a gift wrapped in silk which contained an image of Aisha – after Prophet, Aisha served as a teacher of the teachers and would answer those who came to her seeking rulings, advice and opinions based on her expert knowledge. The book continues with the stories of the other wives of the Prophet before proceeding to his daughters.
The Prophet had once said, “If my own daughter Fatima were to steal, I would have her hand cut off” and “Fatima is part of me. Whoever offends her, offends me”. The book then narrates stories of the other followers of the Prophet like Umm Ammarah who had bravely fought in the battles.
This is a book meant for children, so I found it easy to read and follow the stories – the Arabic names of the people and places referred to were difficult for me to follow and remember, but otherwise, the stories were simple and brief.