The Power of Truth

It was the ‘Year of Sorrow’ for the Holy Prophet (s). His uncle, Hazrat Abu Talib (‘a), who had protected and supported him like a wall of iron, passed away, followed by his (s) beloved wife Hazrat Khadijatul Kubra (‘a), his fortress of strength. In short, he lost his supporter within the four walls of the house, and his protector in the life outside the house. It was he who named the year as one of sorrow, because both, who had supported him as the Messenger of Allah(s), had been called back by their Creator. The events following their demise showed the world the significance of the role they had played in the Divine mission of his life.
The Quraysh, on the other hand, could not hide their pleasure and glee. Their only desire was to create as many hurdles in the Holy Prophet’s (s) way as possible.
A few days after facing this loss, the Holy Prophet (s) was passing through a street when somebody threw garbage on him. He had to return home to bathe and change his clothes. His daughter, Hazrat Fatima Zahra(‘a) saw him in that condition, and with tears flowing down her cheeks, started removing the dust from his head. He looked at her and said, ‘Don’t weep, my dear Fatima, and don’t be anxious about my safety. Your father is not alone. The Creator of the universe is with him.’
After this incident, the Holy Prophet (s) decided to go elsewhere to spread the Message. He left alone for Taif, to preach Islam to the Bani Saqeef. Taif was a holiday resort for the wealthy Meccans, because of its peaceful environment and cool, pleasant climate.
He was not expecting any great positive response from the people of Taif. They were, like the rich polytheists in the suburbs of Mecca, living a life of luxury. However, this did not deter him. He was ready to undertake any amount of trouble for the sake of Allah and His Message.
He entered Taif, and as soon as the wealthy came to know that Muhammad (s) had come to speak to them, they refused pointblank, and humiliated him. They sent their handpicked rogues and scoundrels to force him out of Taif, so that the simple hearted would not fall a prey to his preaching. They hurled stones at him from all sides until he was bleeding from the wounds inflicted by them. He left the town and sat under a tree in an orchard in the outskirts of the town. This orchard belonged to Utba and Shayba, two rich traders of the tribe of Quraysh. By chance, they happened to be inspecting their fruit at that time and saw the Holy Prophet (s) in that injured condition. They smiled at each other, pleased with the sight.
The Holy Prophet (s) sat under the tree, and cleaned the blood from his face. He was alone with his Lord there. He wanted to share his feelings with Him, so he said,
“My Master, my Lord! I hereby lodge a complaint with You against these people.They had no reason to treat me, your weak and helpless creature, as they did. Lord! You are the God of the poor and oppressed, You are my God, and You just saw me facing the cruelty and hatred of these hooligans alone. Have You decided to empower my enemies and defeat me? If that pleases You, Lord, then I am content. Nothing else is of consequence besides Your Pleasure. I take refuge in Your Light, which shattered the gloom of the universe and made it bright. Even if You allow disasters to descend on me, I will happily accept everything that comes from You, for my only desire is to gain Your Pleasure. You are the Omnipotent, the Sovereign over everything in the Universe.”
Utba and Shayba were watching the alienated condition of the Holy Prophet (s) with pleasure. They placed a bunch of grapes in a plate and ordered their Christian bondsman, Addas, to give it to the injured person sitting under the tree. They warned him to return immediately, and not enter into a conversation with him.
Addas took the plate of grapes and placed it before the Holy Prophet (s).
‘They are for you, eat them,’ he said.
The Holy Prophet (s) picked a grape from the bunch and said, ‘Bismillah.’
Addas had never heard anybody in Taif utter the phrase he had just heard.
‘What did you just say? I don’t recall hearing it before,’ he queried.
‘O Addas, where are you from, and which religion do you profess?’
‘I am a Christian from Nineveh.’
‘Oh, so you are from Nineveh. Yunus ibn e Matti, the man of God, was your fellow citizen.’
‘Strange! Indeed, most strange! I fail to understand how you know his full name. Not even ten people knew his father’s name when I lived there. I am amazed how you learnt about it.’
‘Yunus is my brother. He was a prophet of God and I, too, am a Prophet of God.’
Shayba and Utba noticed that their bondsman was totally engrossed in conversation. They grew anxious. They did not want anyone to communicate with the Holy Prophet (s), because whoever did, almost immediately embraced Islam.
Their fears were not unfounded. They saw Addas suddenly fall on the ground and kiss the Prophet’s (s) hands and feet.
They couldn’t have been unhappier. Looking at one another, they said, ‘Did you see that? He has misguided poor Addas.’