Umm Kulthum was the daughter of Uqba bin Abi Muqayt, who was a ferocious enemy of the Prophet. She was Hz. Uthman’s sister. She became a Muslim in Makkah and paid allegiance to the Prophet.
She was forced to exit Islam. However, she did not heed their oppression. She did not give up her belief. Her days passed with pains and agonies. Years passed like that.
The real pains and agonies started after that for her because the Prophet, her only source of consolation, was no longer in Makkah. Umm Kulthum lived in her hometown as if she was in foreign land. She prayed to Allah Almighty to end her trouble and looked for an opportunity to migrate. However, she could not find the opportunity she wanted.
Finally, Allah Almighty gave her the opportunity. She left Makkah as if she was going out as she did every day. Her real intention was to migrate to Madinah. She was ready to suffer on the way.
She did not feel sorry because of this since she regarded rejoining the Messenger of Allah as great happiness. After a long and tiring journey, Madinah appeared. Umm Kulthum’s heart started to pound due to excitement. She felt ebullient. For a moment, she thought about the troubled days in Makkah. However, she felt happy, not sad, for those days. For, those troubled days were left behind and were replaced by good days. She felt happy and thanked Allah Almighty for it. Entering Madinah with these thoughts, Umm Kulthum became a guest in Umm Salama’s house. Umm Salama, one of the wives of the Prophet, gave her some food and drinks.
The Prophet was not at home. Umm Kulthum was waiting worriedly because one of the terms of the Treaty of Hudaybiyya, which the Prophet signed with the polytheists, necessitated returning the Makkans who became Muslims and who escaped to Madinah to the polytheists. Due to this term of the treaty, the Prophet had returned Abu Jandal and Abu Basir, who became Muslims and who took refuge in the Prophet (pbuh), to the polytheists. Umm Kulthum was not sure whether she would be returned or not. She mentioned her worry to Umm Salama:
“I fear that the Messenger of Allah will return me like Abu Jandal and Abu Basir. O Umm Salama! Women are not like men. I left Makkah eight days ago. They will start to look for me.”
While Umm Kulthum was waiting in excitement, the Prophet (pbuh) arrived. Umm Salama told him about the situation. The Messenger of Allah said welcome to this self-sacrificing Companion. Meanwhile, Umm Kulthum’s excitement increased. Her heart started to pound. She told the Messenger of Allah about her situation:
“O Messenger of Allah! I migrated and came to you for the sake of my religion. If you return me to them, they will torture me and try to force me to exit my religion. I am a woman. I cannot put up with torture. You know that women are like weak people.”
After listening to her, the Prophet relieved her by saying,
“Allah will definitely break and annul the agreement related to women.”
As a matter of fact, verse 10 of the chapter of al Mumtahina, which means the woman that is tested, was sent down. Allah Almighty stated the following in the verse:
“O ye who believe! when there come to you believing women refugees, examine (and test) them: Allah knows best as to their Faith: if ye ascertain that they are Believers, then send them not back to the Unbelievers. They are not lawful (wives) for the Unbelievers, nor are the (Unbelievers) lawful (husbands) for them…”
When the revelation was completed, the Prophet gave the good news to Umm Kulthum. There could not have been better news than this one for Hz. Umm Kulthum. She wept for joy.
Meanwhile, her father found out that she was in Madinah. He sent his sons Walid and Umara to the Prophet at once. They came to Madinah and found the Messenger of Allah. They said,
“According to the treaty between us, you are supposed to return the Muslims who escaped to you to us. Return our sister to us.”
The Prophet said,
“Allah Almighty annulled the decree of that term for women.”
He did not return Umm Kulthum to them. Walid and Umara did not insist any longer and returned to Makkah. They told the polytheists about the situation. The polytheists did not do anything about it.
When it became certain that she would live in Madinah, three Companions wanted to marry her: Zubayr bin Awwam, Zayd bin Haritha and Abdurahman bin Awf. Umm Kulthum consulted her brother Uthman. Uthman advised her to ask the Messenger of Allah about it. The Prophet found it appropriate for her to marry Zayd bin Haritha. Then, he married them. Hz. Zayd and Umm Kulthum led a happy life together.
Umm Kulthum was a person who showed consent to qadar. She agreed to everything that came from Allah Almighty. She showed patience and steadfastness at the martyrdom of her husband.
This rejoiced the Prophet, Uthman and Umm Kulthum. It was a family reunion though it was partial. Arwa died during the caliphate of Hz. Uthman. Her janazah prayer was led by Hz. Uthman. He prayed for her as follows:
“O Allah! Forgive my mother! O Allah! Forgive my mother!”
Umm Kulthum, who learned a lot from the talks of the Messenger of Allah, narrated a few hadiths. One of them is as follows:
“A person who tells good things, utters nice words and spreads words between people though they are not true in order to reconcile people is not regarded to have told lies.”
The real name of “Hala Sultan”, whom we know as the spiritual guard of Cyprus, is “Umm Haram”. This great mujahid of Islam, who went as far as Cyprus from Madinah though she was old in order to be one of the people the Messenger of Allah mentioned, is the maternal aunt of Anas bin Malik, the great Companion. She is also the sister of Haram bin Milhan, one of the great Companions. She is one of the relatives of the Prophet through her maternal aunts and she is also the foster-aunt of the Prophet. She was married to Amr bin Qays before Islam. She became a Muslim in the first years of Islam in Madinah. She asked her husband to become a Muslim but he did not accept it. Umm Haram, who did not want to live with a polytheist, did not hesitate to leave her husband. After a while, she married Ubada bin Samit.
He sometimes took a nap in her house. Umm Haram always showed respect to him and entertained him in her house. He regarded it as honor to serve him.
Once, the Prophet visited her in her house and talked to her. After a while, he slept. When he woke up, he was smiling. Umm Haram was surprised. She asked,
“O Messenger of Allah! May my mother and father be sacrificed for you! Why are you smiling?”
The Prophet answered:
“O Umm Haram! I saw some of my ummah boarding ships and sailing in order to fight unbelievers.”
Umm Haram became excited. She wanted to be among them. She said,
“O Messenger of Allah! Pray to Allah so that I will be one of them.”
The Messenger of Allah accepted her wish and prayed:
“O Lord! Make her one of them!”
Then, he slept again.
After a short while, he woke up smiling again. Umm Haram asked him why he was smiling. The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said,
“I saw some of my ummah going to war pompously like kings sitting on their thrones.”
Umm Haram asked the Prophet to pray for her again. She said she wanted to be among them. However, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) did not accept this. He said,
“You will be among the first ones.”
Many years passed. After the death of the Prophet, her husband Ubada bin Samit was appointed to Homs for Islamic service. They went to Homs together. They worked there to spread Islam for a long time.
It was during the caliphate of Hz. Uthman. The boundaries of the Islamic state expanded thanks to the conquests beginning from the caliphate of Hz. Abu Bakr. However, there were many more places to be conquered. One of them was Cyprus, due to its strategic importance. Hz. Muawiya, the governor of Damascus, wanted to conquer this island very much. He made an offer to Hz. Uthman about it but Hz. Uthman did not accept it thinking that it was too early. However, when Muawiya insisted, he gave the permission.
Hz. Muawiya became very glad when he got the permission. He established an armada. Ubada bin Samit and his wife Umm Haram joined this navy. Hz. Umm Haram was 86 years old then.
The expedition of Cyprus was the first sea expedition of Muslims. Therefore, they underwent a lot of difficulties during the expedition. Umm Haram was too calm for her age. She did not complain at all about the difficulties of the expedition. She remembered the good news given to her by the Messenger of Allah and wanted this good news to be realized. She thought about the grace of Allah Almighty to martyrs and ignored the difficulties. This state of hers set an example to mujahids and increased their patience.
After a long and tiring voyage, the armada reached Cyprus. First, they asked the Cypriots to become Muslims. When they rejected it, they asked them to pay jizyah (a kind of tax). The Cypriots did not accept it, either. Fighting was inevitable. Umm Haram could not stand still; she felt impatient for fighting. Finally, fighting started. The mujahids attacked suddenly and beat the Greek armada. Then, they made a landing operation. The fighting continued on the land. The Greeks could not resist any more.
They accepted to pay jizyah and offered peace. Thus, Cyprus was conquered in the 28th year of the Migration.
After the war, the Islamic army started to return to Damascus. Umm Haram felt very sorry that she could not be a martyr. However, she was destined to be a martyr and it was going to happen. As a matter of fact, her horse became restive. Umm Haram fell off her horse and became a martyr. Thus, she joined the caravan of martyrs, about whom Allah Almighty said,
“Do not say they are dead.”( Tabaqat, 8: 433-434; Musnad, 6: 361; Usdu’l-Ghaba, 5: 574; al-Isaba, 4: 441; Muslim, Imara: 160. )
The tomb of Umm Haram, who is the symbol of the conquest of Cyprus, is near the Salt Lake, which is in Larnaca. It has been emitting abundance for hundreds of years. Her tomb is constantly visited.
Cyprus was ruled by Muslims for many years. Once, it was invaded by Christians. However, it was conquered again by the Ottomans in 1570; it became Muslim land again. The Ottomans restored the tomb of Umm Haram. They called it “Hala Sultan”. It is narrated that the Ottoman ships saluted her by cannon fire when they passed near it.
May Allah be pleased with her!
Umm Ruman was a widow when she married Hz. Abu Bakr. Hz. Aisha and Hz. Abdurahman were born out of this marriage. She became a Muslim during the first years of Islam. She supported Hz. Abu Bakr during the days of trouble and torture. She showed patience in the presence of all of the hardships in the way of Allah. She never complained though she underwent material and spiritual problems.
The Prophet met and talked Hz. Abu Bakr a lot. He consulted him about the spread of Islam. Therefore, he often went to Hz. Abu Bakr’s house.
She showed respect to the Prophet and expressed her gladness due to his honoring her house by coming to her house.
Once, when the Messenger of Allah visited this lucky family, he said to Umm Ruman,
“I advise you to take care of Aisha and treat her well.”
Umm Ruman was a clever person. She guessed that there was definitely some wisdom behind this advice of the Messenger of Allah’s. She started to take care of Hz. Aisha more. Once, the Messenger of Allah saw Hz. Aisha crying. This crying affected the Messenger of Allah. He approached her asked her why she was crying. She said she was crying because of her mother. The Prophet turned to Umm Ruman and said,
“Did I not tell you to treat Aisha well?”
Umm Ruman felt embarrassed and promised that she would not treat Aisha harshly again.
The Prophet accepted her offer and sent her to her house as his deputy.
Umm Ruman opened the door to Hawla. When she saw Hawla was very happy, she asked the reason for it. Hawla said,
“O Umm Ruman! Do you know to what rank did Allah Almighty elevate you in goodness and abundance?”
Umm Ruman was curious. She asked in excitement,
“What is it?”
“The Messenger of Allah sent me here to ask you to marry Aisha off to him.”
Umm Ruman became happy but she could not say anything. She asked Hawla to wait for Hz. Abu Bakr. After a while, Abu Bakr arrived. Hawla told him the good news. Could there have been anything better than becoming the father-in-law of the Messenger of Allah for Hz. Abu Bakr? He accepted it. Thus, the Prophet was engaged to Hz. Aisha.
Both Hz. Abu Bakr and Umm Ruman were more careful about Hz. Aisha. They did their best to bring up Hz. Aisha in a way that would be a suitable wife for the Prophet.
After a while, the Prophet migrated with Hz. Abu Bakr. Both of them left their families in Makkah because it would be dangerous to migrate with them. A few days after the Migration, they arranged something to bring their families. The Prophet appointed his adopted son Zayd bin Haritha, and Hz. Abu Bakr appointed his son Abdullah for it. They went to Makkah. They took Sawda bint Zam’a, Hz. Fatima, Umm Ruman and Hz. Aisha; they set off for Madinah.
On the way, the camel that Hz. Aisha was on ran away. Umm Ruman felt very sad. She though what she would say to the Prophet if something bad happened to her. She started to shout, “O my daughter!” The camel calmed down a bit later. This small caravan arrived in Madinah after a tiring journey.
On the other hand, she also taught Hz. Aisha about the responsibilities of a family and how to treat the Messenger of Allah.
She performed prayers a lot. Once, she was performing a prayer but she was shaking a bit. Meanwhile, Hz. Abu Bakr arrived. He waited for her to complete her prayer. Then, he asked her not to shake in prayer and told her about the following hadith of the Prophet:
“When one of you performs a prayer, he should not move any parts of his body. He should not shake like Jews. For, standing upright and not moving to the right and left are the things that complement prayers.”
This great woman of Islam died in the 6th year of the migration in Madinah. He took care of the task of burying her and placed her in the grave. Then, he said:
“Anyone who likes looking at houris of Paradise should look at Umm Ruman. O Lord! You know the hardships Umm Ruman suffered in Your way and in Your Messenger’s way.”( Tabaqat, 8: 78, 276; al-Isaba, 4: 451; Mustadrak, 3: 473. )
The Muslims of Madinah received the Prophet and those who believed in him with open arms. They were impatient to embrace them. 75 people, 2 of whom were female, went to Aqaba in order to invite meet the Messenger of Allah and to invite him to Madinah. One of those two women was Umm Umara, whose real name was Nasiba.
The return of Isa ( peace be upon him ) is an event all three Abrahamic faiths are waiting for.
Our beloved Prophet Muhammad ( peace and blessings be upon him ) met Isa ( peace be upon him ) during his Night Journey when he was brought to Jerusalem and to the Heavens afterwards.
Those that had an important role in society and considered themselves superior wanted to get rid of the pure, weak worshippers that were following Isa’s ( peace be upon him ) path . Naturally, they wanted to defend themselves . This is when Isa ( peace be upon him ) gave them the most beautiful advice that soon enough was going to become the most famous saying of his. He advised them that if one was slapped on the left cheek, then to offer the offender the right as well. He assured them that Allah is the One and Only who grants victory and success.