Abu Talib ibn Abd al-Muttalib

Abu Talib ibn Abd al-Muttalib (Arabic: أَبُو طَالِب ٱبْن عَبْد ٱلْمُطَّلِبʾAbū Ṭālib ibn ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib; c. 535 – c. 619) Abu Talib means; The father of Talib, born ʿImrān (عِمْرَان) or ʿAbd Manāf (عَبْد مَنَاف),[1] was the leader of Banu Hashim, a clan of the Qurayshi tribe of Mecca in the Hejazi region of the Arabian Peninsula. He was an uncle of the Islamic Prophet Muhammad,[2] and father of the Rashid Caliph Ali. After the death of his father Abd al-Muttalib ibn Hashim ibn Abd Manaf, he inherited this position, and the offices of Siqaya and Rifada.[3] He was well-respected in Mecca, despite a declining fortune.[4]

Abu Talib ibn Abd al-Muttalib
أَبُو طَالِب ٱبْن عَبْد ٱلْمُطَّلِب
Major Chief Leader of Quraysh
Reignc. 578 - 619 CE
PredecessorAbd al-Muttalib ibn Hashim
SuccessorAbu Lahab ibn Abd al-Muttalib
Born'Imran (عِمْرَان) or
'Abd Manaf (عَبْد مَنَاف)[1]
c. 535 CE
Mecca, Hijaz
(present-day Saudi Arabia)
Diedc. 619(619-00-00) (aged 83–84)
Mecca
SpouseFatimah bint Asad
IssueTalib
'Aqeel
Ja'far
Ali
Tulayq
Fakhitah
Jumanah
Raytah
ReligionIslam

Early lifeEdit

Abu Talib was born in the city of Mecca in the Hijaz region in 535 CE. He was the son of the Hashimite chief, Abd al-Muttalib. He was a brother of Muhammad's father, Abdullah, who had died before Muhammad's birth. After the death of Muhammad's mother Aminah bint Wahab, Muhammad as a child was taken into the care of his grandfather, Abd al-Muttalib. When Muhammad reached eight years of age, Abd al-Muttalib died. One of Muhammad's uncles was to take him in. The oldest, Al-Harith was not wealthy enough to take him in. Abu Talib, despite his poverty, took in Muhammad because of his generosity.[5] Although Abu Talib was responsible for Siqaya and Rifada (Food and Beverages) of Hajj pilgrims, he was poor.

Muhammad loved his uncle, and Abu Talib loved him in return.[6] Abu Talib is remembered as a gifted poet, and many poetic verses in support of Muhammad are attributed to him.[3][7] Once, as Abu Talib was about to leave for a trading expedition, Muhammad wept and could not bear to be separated from him. To this Abu Talib responded, "By God I will take him with me, and we shall never part from each other."[8]

Later in life, as an adult, Muhammad saw that Abu Talib was struggling financially after a severe drought. Muhammad decided to take charge of one of Abu Talib's children and he convinced Al-'Abbas to do the same. They discussed this matter with Abū Ṭālib, who asked that his favorite child 'Aqīl be left with him. Al-'Abbās chose Ja'far, and Muhammad chose 'Alī.[9][10][11][12][13][excessive citations]

Protecting MuhammadEdit

In tribal society, a tribal affiliation is important, otherwise a man can be killed with impunity.[14] As leader of the Banu Hashim, Abu Talib acted as a protector to Muhammad. After Muhammad began preaching the message of Islam, members of the other Qurayshite clans increasingly came to feel threatened by Muḥammad. In attempts to quiet him, they pressured Abū Ṭālib to silence his nephew or control him. Despite these pressures, Abu Talib maintained his support of Muḥammad, defending him from the other leaders of the Quraysh. Leaders of the Quraysh directly confronted Abu Talib several times. Abu Talib brushed them off and continued to support Muhammad even when it put a rift between him and the Quraysh. In one account, the Quraysh even threatened to fight the Banu Hashim over this conflict.[15] In a particular narration of one such confrontation, Abu Talib summoned Muhammad to speak with the Quraysh. Muhammad asked the Quraysh leaders to say the shahada and they were astounded.[16]

The Quraysh even tried to bribe Abu Talib. They told Abu Talib that if he let them get hold of Muhammad, then he could adopt 'Umarah ibn al Walid ibn al Mughirah, the most handsome youth in Quraysh.[15][17][18] When this also failed, the Quraysh elicited the support of other tribes to boycott trading with or marrying members of the Banu Hashim lineage. This boycott started seven years after Muhammad first received revelation and lasted for three years.[3] The goal was to put pressure on the Hashimites and even starve them into submission.[19] For the sake of security, many members of the Banu Hashim moved near to Abu Talib (Encyclopedia of Islam), and the place became like a ghetto.[19] This didn't cause undue hardship[20] because many had family members in other tribes that would smuggle goods to them.[19] Abu Talib's brother, Abu Lahab, sided with the Quraysh on this issue; he moved to a house in the district of Abd Shams to demonstrate support for the Quraysh.[19][21] He thought Muhammad was either mad or an impostor.[22]

Protecting Muhammad put considerable pressure on Abu Talib and the Banu Hashim. In one instance Abu Talib exclaimed to Muhammad, "Save me and yourself, and do not put a greater burden on me than I cannot bear." Muhammad responded, "Oh uncle! By God Almighty I swear, even if they should put the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left that I abjure this cause, I shall not do so until God has vindicated it or caused me to perish in the process."[23] Seeing his nephew's emotion, Abu Talib responded, "Go, nephew, and say what you like. By God, I will never hand you over for any reason."[24]

DeathEdit

Abū Ṭālib died around 619 AD, at more than 80 years of age, about 10 years after the start of Muhammad's mission.[3] This year is known as the Year of Sorrow for Muhammad, because not only did his uncle Abu Talib die, but also his wife Khadijah bint Khuwaylid, within a month of Abu Talib.

Before Abu Talib died, Muhammad asked him to pronounce the Shahadah.[16] In another tradition Abu Talib was dissuaded from saying the Shahadah by the Quraysh.[25] According to the historiographer Fred McGraw Donner, both of these traditions have very old isnads but the first variation has two different isnads which might suggest that the second variation is a modification of the older, first variation.[25]

In yet another variation of Abu Talib's death, his brother, Al-'Abbās, who was sitting next to Abu Talib as he died, saw Abu Talib moving his lips. Al-'Abbās claimed that Abu Talib had said the shahada but Muhammad replied that he had not heard it.[3][26][27]

After Abu Talib's death, Muhammad was left unprotected. Abu Talib's brother and successor as the Chief of the family, that is Abu Lahab, did not protect him, as he was an enemy of Muhammad, so Muhammad and his followers faced incredible persecution. Muhammad is quoted as exclaiming, "By God, Quraysh never harmed me so much as after the death of Abu Talib."[28][29] The early Muslims relocated to Abyssinia and then to Medina in order to escape persecution by the Quraysh.

ViewsEdit

The memory of Abu Talib is influenced by political aims of the Sunnis and Shias.[30]

ShiaEdit

Shia also believe that the ancestors of Abu Talib were Muslims. Abu Talib was a descendant of Isma'il ibn Ibrahim[31]

In addition, when Muhammad married Khadija, Abu Talib recited the sermon of the marriage. This fact has also been used to prove Abu Talib's monotheism.[32]

SunniEdit

It is reported in Sunni Islam that the Quranic verse 28:56 ("O Prophet! Verily, you guide not whom you like, but Allah guides whom He will") was revealed concerning Abu Talib's rejection of Islam at the hands of his nephew.[33][34]

In one account by the historian Al-Mada'ini, and widely circulated by the Abbasids, one of two men states, "I wish that Abu Talib had embraced Islam, for the Apostle of God would have been delighted at that. But he was an unbeliever."[35]:218 Along the same lines, there is a similar account where Ali informs Muhammad of Abu Talib's death by saying, "Your uncle, the erring old man, has died."[35]:219

FamilyEdit

Abu Talib was married to Fatimah bint Asad. They had four sons:

and three daughters:

By another wife, Illa, he had a fifth son:

Education to his childrenEdit

Family treeEdit


Kilab ibn MurrahFatimah bint Sa'd
Zuhrah ibn Kilab
(progenitor of Banu Zuhrah)
maternal great-great-grandfather
Qusai ibn Kilab
paternal great-great-great-grandfather
Hubba bint Hulail
paternal great-great-great-grandmother
`Abd Manaf ibn Zuhrah
maternal great-grandfather
`Abd Manaf ibn Qusai
paternal great-great-grandfather
Atikah bint Murrah
paternal great-great-grandmother
Wahb ibn `Abd Manaf
maternal grandfather
Hashim ibn 'Abd Manaf
(progenitor of Banu Hashim)
paternal great-grandfather
Salma bint `Amr
paternal great-grandmother
Fatimah bint `Amr
paternal grandmother
`Abdul-Muttalib
paternal grandfather
Halah bint Wuhayb
paternal step-grandmother
Aminah
mother
`Abdullah
father
Az-Zubayr
paternal uncle
Harith
paternal half-uncle
Hamza
paternal half-uncle
Thuwaybah
first nurse
Halimah
second nurse
Abu Talib
paternal uncle
`Abbas
paternal half-uncle
Abu Lahab
paternal half-uncle
6 other sons
and 6 daughters
MuhammadKhadija
first wife
`Abd Allah ibn `Abbas
paternal cousin
Fatimah
daughter
Ali
paternal cousin and son-in-law
family tree, descendants
Qasim
son
`Abd-Allah
son
Zainab
daughter
Ruqayyah
daughter
Uthman
second cousin and son-in-law
family tree
Umm Kulthum
daughter
Zayd
adopted son
Ali ibn Zainab
grandson
Umamah bint Zainab
granddaughter
`Abd-Allah ibn Uthman
grandson
Rayhana bint Zayd
wife
Usama ibn Zayd
adoptive grandson
Muhsin ibn Ali
grandson
Hasan ibn Ali
grandson
Husayn ibn Ali
grandson
family tree
Umm Kulthum bint Ali
granddaughter
Zaynab bint Ali
granddaughter
Safiyya
tenth wife
Abu Bakr
father-in-law
family tree
Sawda
third wife
Umar
father-in-law
family tree
Umm Salama
sixth wife
Juwayriya
eighth wife
Maymuna
eleventh wife
Aisha
third wife
Family tree
{{{Zaynab bint Khuzaymah}}}Hafsa
fourth wife
Zaynab
seventh wife
Umm Habiba
ninth wife
Maria al-Qibtiyya
twelfth wife
Ibrahim
son
  • * indicates that the marriage order is disputed
  • Note that direct lineage is marked in bold.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Abu-Talib (a.s.) The Greatest Guardian of Islam". duas.org. Archived from the original on 17 December 2013. Retrieved 27 October 2013.
  2. ^ Ibn Sa'd, Al-Tabaqat al-Kobra, Vol. 1, P. 93
  3. ^ a b c d e Rubin, Uri (2013). Fleet, Kate; Krämer, Gudrun; Matringe, Denis; Nawas, John; Rowson, Everett (eds.). Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE. Brill Online. ISSN 1873-9830.
  4. ^ Armstrong, Karen (1992). Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet. San Francisco: Harper Collins. p. 77.
  5. ^ Haykal, Muhammad Husayn (1976). The Life of Muhammad. North American Trust Publications. p. 54.
  6. ^ Rubin, Uri (1995). The Eye of the Beholder. Princeton, New Jersey: Darwin Press, Inc. p. 93.
  7. ^ Lings, Martin (2006). Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources. Rochester, Vermont: Inner Traditions. p. 33.
  8. ^ The History of al-Tabari. Albany: State University of New York Press. 1988. p. 44.
  9. ^ Ibn Hisham, al-Sirah, Vol. I, p.162.
  10. ^ Tārīkh Al-Tabarī (vol 2 p.63), Tārīkh ibn Al-Athīr (vol 2 p.24), Musnad of Aḥmed ibn Ḥanbal (vol 1 p.159), Al-Sīrat al-Nabawīyah by ibn Kathīr (vol 1 p.457-459).
  11. ^ Sunan al-Tirmidhī (vol 2 p.301), Al-Ṭabaqāt Al-Kubrā - ibn Sa'd (vol 3 kklkp.12), Usd Al-Ghābah (vol 4 p.17), Kanz al-'Ummāl (vol 6 p.400), Tārīkh Al-Ṭabarī (vol 2 p.55), Tārīkh Baghdād (vol 2 p.18)
  12. ^ Armstrong, Karen (1993). Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet. San Francisco: Harper Collins. p. 81.
  13. ^ The History of al-Tabari. Albany: State University Press. 1985. p. 83.
  14. ^ Armstrong, Karen (2000). Islam: A Short History. New York: Modern Library. p. 13.
  15. ^ a b Rubin, Uri (1995). The Eye of the Beholder. Princeton, New Jersey: Darwin Press, Inc. p. 150.
  16. ^ a b The History of al-Tabari. New York: State University Press. 1985. p. 95.
  17. ^ The History of al-Tabari. New York: State University Press. 1985. p. 97.
  18. ^ Haykal, Muhammad Husayn (1976). The Life of Muhammad. North American Trust Publications. p. 88.
  19. ^ a b c d Armstrong, Karen (1993). Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet. San Francisco: Harper Collins. p. 129.
  20. ^ The History of al-Tabari. New York: State University Press. 1985. p. xliv.
  21. ^ Lings, Martin (2006). Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources. Rochester, Vermont: Inner Traditions. p. 90.
  22. ^ Lings, Martin (2006). Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources. Rochester, Vermont: Inner Traditions. p. 52.
  23. ^ Haykal, Muhammad Husayn (1976). The Life of Muhammad. North American Trust Publications. p. 89.
  24. ^ The History of al-Tabari. New York: State University Press. 1985. p. 96.
  25. ^ a b Donner, Fred McGraw (1987). "The Death of Abu Talib". In John H. Marks; Robert M. Good (eds.). Love and Death in the Ancient Near East. Guilford, Connecticut: Four Quarters. p. 245.
  26. ^ Lings, Martin (2006). Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources. Rochester, Vermont: Inner Traditions. p. 99.
  27. ^ Rubin, Uri (1995). The Eye of the Beholder. Princeton, New Jersey: Darwin Press, Inc. p. 152.
  28. ^ Haykal, Muhammad Husayn (1976). The Life of Muhammad. North American Trust Publications. p. 136.
  29. ^ Armstrong, Karen (1993). Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet. San Francisco: Harper Collins. p. 135.
  30. ^ Rubin, Uri (1995). The Eye of the Beholder. Princeton, New Jersey: Darwin Press, Inc. p. 149.
  31. ^ Story of the Prophets by Ibn Kathir, ISBN 9781518937705
  32. ^ Razwy, Sayed Ali Asgher. A Restatement of the History of Islam & Muslims. p. 40.
  33. ^ Diane Morgan (2010). Essential Islam: A Comprehensive Guide to Belief and Practice. ABC-CLIO. p. 114. ISBN 9780313360251.
  34. ^ Muhammad Saed Abdul-Rahman (2009). The Meaning and Explanation of the Glorious Qur'an (Vol 7). MSA Publication Limited. p. 202. ISBN 9781861796615.
  35. ^ a b Donner, Fred McGraw (1987). "The Death of Abu Talib". In John H. Marks; Robert M. Good (eds.). Love and Death in the Ancient Near East. Guilford, Connecticut: Four Quarters. pp. 238–239.
  36. ^ Muhammad ibn Saad. Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Tabir. Translated by Haq, S. M. (1967). Ibn Sa'd's Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Kabir, Vol. I Parts I & II, pp. 135-136. Delhi: Kitab Bhavan.
  37. ^ Muhammad ibn Saad. Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Tabir, vol. 8. Translated by Bewley, A. (1995). The Women of Madina, p. 35. London: Ta-Ha Publishers.
Preceded by
Zubayr ibn 'Abd al-Muṭṭalib
Head of Banū Hāshim
?–619
Succeeded by
Abū Lahab