Kaleef K. Karim
Uqba bin Abi Muayt is portrayed by critics as an innocent Qurayshi polytheist who did not deserve to be dealt with in the battle of Badr. In the following historical sources, we provide dozen or more historical reports where Uqba attempted to murder the Prophet Muhammed (p). Other times where he didn’t succeed in the killing, he would often try and bully the Prophet (p).
Sahih al-Bukhari (820 – 870 AD):
Narrated `Urwa bin Az-Zubair: I asked `Abdullah bin `Amr, “What was the worst thing the pagans did to Allah’s Messenger ?” He said, “I saw `Uqba bin Abi Mu’ait coming to the Prophet while he was praying.’ `Uqba put his sheet round the Prophet’s neck and squeezed it very severely. Abu Bakr came and pulled `Uqba away from the Prophet and said, “Do you intend to kill a man just because he says: ‘My Lord is Allah, and he has brought forth to you the Evident Signs from your Lord?” (Sahih al-Bukhari volume 5, Book 57, Hadith 27, https://sunnah.com/bukhari/62/28)
Sahih al-Bukhari (820 – 870 AD):
Narrated `Urwa bin Az-Zubair: I asked `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`As to inform me of the worst thing the pagans had done to Allah’s Apostle. He said: “While Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) was praying in the courtyard of the Ka`ba, `Uqba bin Abi Mu’ait came and seized Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) by the shoulder and twisted his garment round his neck and throttled him severely. Abu Bakr came and seized `Uqba’s shoulder and threw him away from Allah’s Apostle and said, “Would you kill a man because he says: ‘My Lord is Allah,’ and has come to you with clear Signs from your Lord?” (40.28) ( Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 6, Book 60, Hadith 339, https://sunnah.com/urn/44940 )
Narrated `Urwa bin Az-Zubair: I asked Ibn `Amr bin Al-As, “Tell me of the worst thing which the pagans did to the Prophet.” He said, “While the Prophet was praying in the Hijr of the Kaba; Uqba bin Abi Mu’ait came and put his garment around the Prophet’s neck and throttled him violently. Abu Bakr came and caught him by his shoulder and pushed him away from the Prophet and said, “Do you want to kill a man just because he says, ‘My Lord is Allah?'” (Sahih al-Bukhari volume 5, Book 58, Hadith 195, https://sunnah.com/bukhari/63/82 )
Muhammed Ibn Jarir al-Tabari (838 – 923 AD):
“Yunus b. ‘Abd al-A’la-Bishr b. Bakr-al-Awza’i-Yahya b. Abi Kathir-Abu Salamah b. ‘Abd al-Rahman: I said to ‘Abdallah b. ‘Amr, “Tell the worst thing which you saw the polytheists do to the Messenger of God.” He said, “Uqbah b. Abi Mu’ayt came up while the Messenger of God was by the Ka’bah, twisted his robe round his neck, and throttled him violently. Abu Bakr stood behind him, put his hand on his shoulder, and pushed him away from the Messenger of God. Then he said, ‘People, would you kill a man because he says, My Lord is God? … ‘ to the words ‘God guides not one who is prodigal, a liar?”‘ ((The History of Al-Tabari: Muhammad at Mecca – (“Ta’rikh al-rusul wa’l-Muluk”) – [Translated by W. Montgomery Watt – State University of New York Press, 1988], volume VI (6), page 102 – 103)
Muhammed Ibn Jarir al-Tabari (838 – 923 AD) goes further several pages later:
“The Messenger of God continued to live in Mecca with Quraysh, calling them to God secretly and openly, enduring their molestation of him, their calling him a liar, and their derision of him. Things came to such a pitch that one of them, it is said, would throw a sheep’s womb upon him as he was praying or would throw it into his cooking pot when it was set up for him. Finally, I have been told, he took a large stone and sheltered behind it when he prayed.” ((The History of Al-Tabari: Muhammad at Mecca – (“Ta’rikh al-rusul wa’l-Muluk”) – [Translated by W. Montgomery Watt – State University of New York Press, 1988], volume VI (6), page 114)
Ibn Kathir (1301 – 1373):
“‘The Messenger of God (SAAS) replied, “Yes. Do you know how this man (Uqba b. Mu’ayt) treated me? He came up while I was prostrate in prayer behind the maqam, placed his foot on my neck and pressed down on it. I thought my eyes were going to come out, before he lifted up his foot. On another occasion he brought a sheep’s entrails which he threw over my head while I was prostrate in prayer. Fatima came and washed it off my head.””‘ (Sira al-Nabawiyya, by Ibn Kathir volume 2, page 318)
“Urwa narrates that he once asked Abul Aas about the worst thing that the polytheist (Quraysh) did to the Prophet. He said, ‘When the Prophet was once performing prayer (Salaah) in the Hateem of the Kabah, Uqba Ibn Abi Mu’eet came and placed a cloth around the neck of the Prophet. He then started throttling the Prophet very severely. Abu Bakr then arrived and grabbing Uqba by the shoulders, pushed him away from the Prophet. Abu Bakr then recited the following verse of the Quran: ‘Will you kill a man for saying, Allah is my LORD’, when he has brought the truth to you from your LORD?’ (Surah Mu’min, verse 28).” (Sirah al-Nabawiyya, by Ibn Kathir volume 2, page 46)
Mustadrak – al-Haakim Nishapuri (933 – 1012):
“Anas Ibn Malik narrates that the polytheists (mushrikeen) once beat the Prophet up so badly that he fell unconscious, Abu Bakr then said, ‘shame on you people! Will you kill a man for saying, ‘Allah is my LORD’? When someone asked who he was, the other replied, ‘He is the madman Abu Bakr.’ They then proceeded and attacked Abu Bakr.” (Haythami volume 6, page 17. See also Mustadrak of Haakim volume 3, page 67)
Dalaa’il – Abu Nu’aym (d. 1038):
“Amr Ibn al-Aas narrates that he had never seen the Quraysh try to assassinate the Prophet except one one occasion when a group of them were sitting together and discussing while the Prophet was performing prayer (Salaah) near the Maqaam of Ibrahim. Uqba Ibn Abi Mu’eet then stood before the Prophet and wrapping his shawl around the Prophet’s neck, he pulled it so hard (throttled the Prophet) that the Prophet fell to his knees. The people started shouting and thought that the Prophet had been killed. Abu Bakr came running and from the back he grabbed hold of the Pophet under his armpits. He then said, ‘Will you kill a man for saying, ‘Allah is my LORD.’” (Kanzul Ummaal volume 2, page 327; Haythami volume 6, page 16; See also Abu Nu’aym in Dalaa’il, page 67)
Hilya – Abu Nu’aym (d. 1038):
“Some people once asked Asma Abi Bakr what was the worst she had seen the polytheist (Quraysh) do to the Prophet, she replied by saying, ‘The polytheist (Quraysh) used to sit in the Masjidul Haraam to discuss the Prophet and what he had to say about their gods. As they were doing this once day, the Prophet arrived and they all attacked him. The shouts reached my father Abu Bakr as the people called out, ‘Help your friend. As my father left us (I can still clearly recall that) his hair had four locks and he was saying: ‘Will you kill a man for saying, ‘Allah is my LORD’, when he has brought the truth to you from your LORD?’ (Surah Mu’min, verse 28)
The mob then left the Prophet and turned on Abu Bakr (attacking him physically). When he returned to us, (he was beaten so badly that) merely touching the locks of his hair would cause it to fall off. However, he was saying, ‘You are most Bless, O the Possessor of Majesty and Honour.’” (Haythami volume 6, page 17. See also Ist’aab by Abdil Birr, volume 2, page 247 and Hilya by Abu Nu’aym volume 1, page 31)
Haythami (1503 – 1566):
“Ali Ibn Abi Talib narrates, ‘I have seen Quraysh grab hold of the Prophet with one person treating him angrily and another shaking him while they said to him, ‘Do you make all gods into one?!’ By Allah! None of us dared go close to the Prophet (for fear of being beaten by the Quraysh) besides Abu Bakr. He would hit one person, wrestle with another and shake someone else as he said, ‘shame on you people! Will you kill a man for saying, Allah is my LORD?’ Ali then lifted the shawl he was wearing and wept until his beard became wet. He then said, ‘I ask you to swear by Allah whether the believer (Mu’min) from the court of Pharaoh (Fir’oun) was better or Abu Bakr.’ When everyone remained silent, Ali said, ‘By Allah! A moment of the life of Abu Bakr is better than the earth full of people like the believer (Mu’min) from the court of Pharaoh (Fir’oun). While the believer from the court of Pharaoh concealed his faith (Imaan), Abu Bakr made his faith (Imaan) public.” (Al-Bidaya Wa Nihaya, Ibn Kathir, volume 3, page 271 Arabic Ed. See also, Haythami, volume 9, page 47)
Fathul-Barri – Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani (1373 – 1449):
“I recall one incident when the Quraysh were battering the Prophet around whilst taunting him repeatedly with the words: ‘So you are the one who has united all the gods into a single deity?’ Whilst they were kicking him around, none of us could marshal the nerve to intervene and fend off the enemy but by good fortune, Abu Bakr happened to pass by. He swiftly leaped into the mob and landed a punch here and delivered a blow there and just as that believing man addressed Fir’aun and Haman, Abu Bakr addressed the disbelievers grilling them: ‘Shame on you! Do you wish to kill a man (simply because) he says Allah is my LORD?’” (Fathul-Barri, by Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, volume 7, page 129)
And a shorter version:
“It is narrated by Anas, the Quraysh beat the Prophet so severely that he fell unconscious. When Abu Bakr came forward to assist him, the disbelievers let go of the Prophet and pounced on Abu Bakr. Asma Bint Abi Bakr relates they beat up Abu Bakr so brutally that his entire head suffered severe wounds. Due to the intensity of these wounds, Abu Bakr could not even touch his head.” (Fathul Barri, by Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, volume 7, page 129)
Uyun al-Athar – Ibn Sayyid al-Nas (1272 – 1334):
“Uthman Ibn Affan narrates: ‘I once saw the Prophet performing Tawaf of the Ka’bah. Uqbah Ibn Abi Ma’it, Abu Jahal and Umayyah Ibn Khalaf were sitting in the Hatim area. The moment the Prophet passed by, they uttered a few obscenities to the Prophet. The second time round, they again told him something repulsive. When they uttered these obscenities on the third round, the Prophet’s countance changed. He came to a standstill and said:
‘By Allah! You will never quit until the punishment of Allah Ta’ala does not swiftly befall you.’Uthman comments: There wasn’t a single one of them who was not trembling in fear. Saying this, the Prophet set out for home whilst we moved off behind him. (Uyun al-Athar, by Ibn Sayyid al-Nas, volume 1, page 104)
Kitab Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra – Ibn Sa’d (784 – 845 AD):
“They (Quraysh polytheists) were relentlessly engaged in hostility against the Prophet. Night and day, they were obsessed with this single mission of antagonism. Abu Jahal, Abu Lahab, and Uqbah Ibn Abi Mu’it were the three most bitter enemies of the lot.” (Kitab Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, by Ibn Sa’d (Arabic edition) volume 1, page 134)
“Uqbah was the bossom chum and confident of Ubayy Ibn Khalaf. One day, Uqbah took a seat in the company of the Prophet attentively listening to the words of the Prophet. When Ubayy learnt of this, he hurried over to Uqbah and voiced his concerns: ‘I learnt that you sat in the company of Muhammad attentively listening to his words. By Allah! Until you do not go and spit on his face, it is haram for me to talk to you and even look at your face.’ Accordingly, the wretched Uqbah rose and ejected his saliva right onto the blessed of the Prophet.” (Ibn Athir, volume 2, page 27)
At the end, Uqba got killed as a result of his hostility towards the Prophet and the Muslim community in the battle of Badr.
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They are not available online. You have to buy the books online.
Jazakallah kairan bro….may Allah swt bless u