What I learn from the life of my mother, Ayesha
By Khadijah Sharif
Often, I wonder why something happened. What could ever be the khair in it? And then I remind myself of the beautiful story of my mother, Ayesha (رضي الله عنها).
She got married to Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) when she was really, really young. And she entered the household of Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) when she was nine years old.
Who would ever think of marriage at such a tender age? If we look at today’s time, nine-year-old’s are still called babies and need their mothers to do everything. But, SubhaanAllah, here Ayesha (رضي الله عنها) is going ahead to build her own household.
Her favourite pastime was swinging and playing with dolls. Once she was playing with a horse that had wings and Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) asked her what it was? She said it’s a horse. He smiled and said that horses don’t have wings. She promptly answered that Prophet Suleiman (عليه السلام) had winged horses. She was so well informed about the religion and so intelligent, that she was able to respond immediately with historical facts. This obviously was because of the environment in which she was brought up as well as her upbringing. She was the daughter of Abu Bakr (رضي الله عنه), the closest companion of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم).
Comparatively, why our children look like zombies today is because of the hollow upbringing they sometimes receive. Psychologists say that children are like dough; they can be moulded just the way you want. So, it’s really up to us to instil Islam in them.
She was just nine years old, but had enough maturity of thought to win the heart of her beloved husband (صلى الله عليه وسلم). He loved her the most and during his last days he kept asking his wives whose turn it was next, as he would stay in each wives house by turns. The ummahaat-ul-mu’mineen understood that he was waiting for Ayesha (رضي الله عنها)’s turn and all of them said to the Prophet of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم).that they would happy with whoever he wished to stay with. He (صلى الله عليه وسلم) then went to Ayesha (رضي الله عنها) and breathed his last in her lap.
Narrated Abu `Uthman: Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) sent`Amr bin Al-`As as the commander of the troops of Dhat-us-Salasil. `Amr bin Al-`As said, “(On my return) I came to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and said, ‘Who among people do you love most?’ He replied, ‘Ayesha.’ I said, ‘From amongst the men?’ He replied, ‘Her father (Abu Bakr)’. I said, ‘Whom (do you love) next?’ He replied, `Umar.’ Then he counted the names of many men, and I became silent for fear that he might regard me as the last of them.” (1)
Her knowledge was vast, she excelled in fiqh and shari’ah, was wise in her interpretation and had mastered the teachings of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم). All this made her a remarkable personality. Even after the death of Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) the companions would come to Ayesha (رضي الله عنها) to get their doubts cleared. She is ranked third in the list of narrators of ahadith with 2,210 ahadith. She was the first female scholar in the history of Islam. This was the amazing and irreplaceable status she had earned in the eyes of the Prophet of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم).
And this is just some of the wisdom and purpose behind her marriage at such a tender age — to be a major contributor to the religion. So many issues that women face, related to purity or ibadah are understood today simply because she narrated these ahadith 1,400 years ago.
Her story gives us the greatest lesson in life: Everything happens for a reason.
Don’t jump to conclusions when something happens. Have faith in Allah because it is for your best. May be you won’t get to see its fruits but your generations to come surely will.
This is for the sisters who are struggling with innumerable problems. Allah’s plans are for you are best and are surely with purpose, may be you are just not meant to know them so soon.
- Sahih al Bukhari 4358, book 64, hadith 384