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Al-Farouq Omar Ibnul-Khattab

Written by: by Hussein M Al-Gayyar :: (View All Articles by: Hussein M Al-Gayyar)

  1. Before The Grand Event
  2. The Grand Event
  3. After The Grand Event Years Of Conquest
  4. Omar's Marked Individuality
  5. Amirul-Mu'Mineen - The Commander Of The Faithful
  6. 'Omar's Martyrdom
  7. Glossary

Before The Grand Event 1

Our man is `Omar ibnul-Khattab, of a tribe 2 called Bani `Adiy. His father, Al-Khattab ibn Nufail, was not well-off, 3 though he was well-known for his violence 4 and brutal 5 nature. There is no doubt that `Omar inherited 6 the severity 7 and violence of his father, and that had it not been for his adoption 8 of Islam, he might have lived among the people of his tribe, as his father had done before, a man with a ruthless 9 heart and a violence of character that could never have been suppressed 10

Yet `Omar's life, in his Pre-Islamic days was more or less the same as the lives of the youth about whom we read in the Pre-Islamic 11 poetry. He was fond of drinking, wrestling 12 with his mates 13 in the market places and courting 14 the pretty young ladies. He used to attend the annual 15 poetic contests 16 at `Okaz market, listen to the recitals 17 of their poets and repeat the verses of the Pre-Islamic poets. As all the other idolaters of his time, `Omar had made his own idol of soft dates. 18

But one day, as he was worshipping 19 his idol, he felt hungry, and found no harm in devouring 20 his god at once, which thing gives a true picture of the silly and trivial 21 mentality 22 of the idol-worshippers in the Pre-Islamic days.

`Omar was one of the very few who were instructed in reading and writing in his childhood. This is why he was frequently chosen by his tribe to represent them whenever there were any disputes 23 between them and other tribes. Whatever those disputes the mere presence of `Omar was a very influential 24 element in eliminating 25 any difficulty and solving any problem.

That was `Omar ibnul-Khattab, the man of extraordinary strenght, height, broad- shoulderedness 26 thickness of hands and feet; the man who forced the people to listen when he spoke, who always hastened away when he walked, and who usually caused much pain when he struck. That was `Omar who never felt scared 27 of anything or anybody throughout his life. It was not strange to see him facing the first Muslims with all the violence and ruthlessness he had. There was a strong enmity between him and Islam; the reason for this was that, among his people, he had been a man full of power prudence 28 zeal 29 and dignity 30 power to defend his people and their beliefs; prudence to be always having watchful care of their interests; zeal to spend his time and effort to keep them in union 31; and dignity to provide full respect and prestige 32 for himself and his people always and everywhere. With all these honourable qualities, 'Omar had had to face any call that might have caused disunion among his people, dispersing 33 them, nullifying 34 their aspirations 35 condemning 36 their beliefs and satirizing 37 their gods. No wonder, then, that `Omar's violence inflicted 38 the severest persecution and torture 39 upon the first Muslims. We have seen how he had inherited so much of his father's brutal and violent nature. If we bear in mind that the most brutal and merciless enemy of Islam, its Prophet and its first adherents, was `Amr ibn-Hisham, after wards named "Abu-Jahl" by the Prophet and his companions, was `Omar's uncle (his mother's brother), we can easily discern 40 that `Omar's violence was the outcome 41 of what he had inherited from his father, and of the hideous 42 ruthlessness his uncle used to inflict upon the poor and weak Muslims of his time.

And it was not strange that `Omar's brutality and audacity 43 had gone so far as to make him think of killing the Prophet and establishing reunion among his people once more. But such a daring idea had had to be checked 44 a thousand times before it rose up to the region of his conscious mind 45 this had happened to `Omar. It had never occurred 46 to his mind that a grand event would take place very soon; and it would take place as a flash of light at one of the brightest moments the history of humanity has ever recorded. 47

The Grand Event

The House of Al-Arqam ibn-abil-Arqam, known afterwards as the House of Islam, was the secret place where the Faithful used to meet with their Prophet, Allah's peace and blessings be upon him, away from the reach of the disbelievers 1 of Quraish. In the sixth year of the Mission, 2 two powerful citizens of Makkah, belonging to the big tribe of Quraish, an nounced their adoption of Islam and joined the party of the Faithful 3 in their holy procession 4 towards realizing 5 the Prophet's and their objective of gathering all the people round the worship of the One God, Allah. Those were Hamzah ibn-'Abdul Muttalib, the Prophet's uncle, and `Omar ibnul-Khattab. The story of the conversion 6 of each of these two great men is very interesting. It happened that one day while the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, was sitting contemplating 7 on the rising ground of As safa, `Amr ibn-Hisham, Abu-Jahl, who was coming up then, saw the Prophet in that contemplative 8 mood. 9 And as Abu-Jahl used to do during the last few years after the Mission, he showered 10 the Prophet with the most contemptuous, 11 hideous and insulting 12 words, to which the Prophet gave no answer whatsoever. Soon each of them left the place and went his own way. A slave-girl, 13 who had been passing by, had seen and heard everything. Hamzah ibn- Abdul-Muttalib, who was a very well-known hunter, chanced to be coming back from the chase 14 when the slave-girl met him. She related to Hamzah with indignation 15 what Abu-Jahl had said to Muhammad. Hamzah felt that his pride 16 was offended 17 and he became as furious 18 as he had never been before. So, he went straight away to Al-Ka'bah; and there, before the Holy House, he found Abu-Jahl sitting with a company of Quraishite leaders. At once, Hamzah raised his bow and struck Abu-Jahl forcefully on his face saying: "Have you been insulting my nephew, and I, too, follow his religion? Now return the strike if you dare." The kinsmen of the wounded Abu-Jahl wanted to attack Hamzah, but Abu-Jahl motioned them away saying: "Leave him alone, for indeed I did insult his nephew most disgracefully. 19 Having thus professed 20 Islam in a moment of indignation and passion, Hamzah found himself, afterwards, deliberately 21 going to the House of Al-Arqam where Muhammad, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, was meeting with his Com panions. And there, he pledged 22 himself to the Prophet testifying 23 that there was no god but Allah and that Muhammad was His Messenger. He kept steadily adherent 24 to his Faith 25 ever after.

A short time after, `Omar ibnul-Khattab's conversion took place. At that time, he was a mature 26 man of thirty to thirty-five years of age, though Ibn-Sa'ad's account is that he was twenty-six. Physically 27 'Omah was well-built and strong of muscle. 28 Temperamentally 29 he was well known for his strong passion. He was addicted to drinking, and he loved amusements. In spite of his violence of character, he was never ruthless to his people. But to the Muslims, he was one of their strongest enemies, a merciless aggressor 30 of their peace, security 31 and religion. As a national of Makkah, he felt that his pride had been wounded by the first emigration 32 of the Muslims to Abyssinia where they had sought 33 the Negus's 34 protection from the torment they were undergoing at 35 the hands of the disbelievers among their own compatriots 36 How could it be that his own countrymen went to seek security and peace at a foreign king and country? This caused him much resentment 37

One day the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, was meeting with his companions at the House of Al-Arqam. `Omar got information of that meeting, and prepared to go there with the intention 38 of killing the Prophet, and thus relieve 39 Quraish of its burden, 40 restore 41 its destroyed unity, and re-establish reverence 42 for the gods that Muhammad had very severely criticized 43 and abused. 44 On his way to the House of AI-Arqam, `Omar was met by a man from Banu Zohrah. When the latter knew what `Omar was resolved 45 to do, he said to him: "O `Omar, I am afraid you are deceiving yourself. Do you think that Banu Hashim, Muhammad's clan 46 would leave you alive once you have killed their son, Muhammad?" And he advised him to start back, hinting 47 that Fatimah bintul-Khattab (`Omar's sister) and her husband Sa'id ibn Zayd had already been converted. This information aroused `Omar's indignation, and consequently, instead of going to the House of Al-Arqam, he went straight to his sister's house. Without knocking, he entered the house and heard a man reading. This was Khabbab ibnul-Aratt, reciting the 20th Sura of the Qur'an while Fatimah and her husband Sa'id were listening. `Omar drew near, and overheard 48 the murmur 49 is low by definition murmur of the reading. When Khabbab heard his steps which could never be missed, 50 he ran away and hid himself in a closet 51 at the back of the house. "What is this recital that I have heard just now?" asked `Omar as he entered angrily. Fatimah and her husband denied that there was any recital. But `Omar swore 52 that he had heard it, and added that he knew they had abandoned 53 their faith and believed in the new faith proclaimed 54 by Muhammad. At this point, his brother in-law, Sa'id ibn Zayd, had the courage to say: "O`Omar! Don't you think there may be truth in another faith than yours?" `Omar was now positive of what he had heard, concerning the conversion of his sister and her husband. Consequently, and in a wild passion, he sprang upon Sa'id ibn Zayd and gave him a strong blow. His wife rose at once to stop her brother's aggression and protect her husband. But in the struggle, she too received some blows that caused her to bleed. 55 This violent aggression led Fatimah and her husband to fearlessly 56 say together: "Yes, it is true We have become Muslims; we believe in Allah and in His Prophet. Now do what you will." This fearless spirit on the part of Fatimah and her husband caused `Omar to be softened, 57 particularly after seeing his sister's face covered with blood. He therefore asked to see the paper they had been reading. But Fatimah said he must first be cleansed 58 for "none but the pure may touch it" [ The Glorious Qur'an: Chapter "al-waqi'ah", verse 79.] 

`Omar did as his sister had required, and then, taking the paper and reading it, his face changed to an expression of regret 59 and sorrow for what he had done to his sister and her husband. The beauty and majesty 60 of what he had just read shook him to the depth of his heart and soul, and with the paper still in his hand, he exclaimed in a low voice, as though speaking to him self: "How excellent is this discourse, and how gracious! How noble is its call, and how generous 61 is its message!" In short, `Omar's good side got the better of him. It all happened in a flash of the moment, when Allah willed it to be. `Omar was inspired to take his decision on the spot. Khabbab, feeling secure now, came out of his hiding place, and said: "O'Omar I believe that Allah has indeed set you apart for Himself, in answer to His Prophet's plea 62 which I heard yesterday, and in which he prayed Allah to strengthen Islam by the nearer and more beloved to Him: `Amr-ibn-Hisham (Abu-Jahl) or `Omar-ibnul-Khat tab." With a pure soul and a heart full of certainty and determination, `Omar headed 63 straight for the House of Al-Arqam where the Prophet was meeting with his Companions and followers. At the door, there were a few of these, including Hamzah-ibn-'Abdul-Muttalib.

They were scared 64 when they saw Omar pacing 65 towards them with his sword in his hand. But Hamzah, henceforth 66 the lion of Allah, said: "Yes'; that is `Omar coming to us; if he is coming for good and aiming whole-heartedly at adopting our faith, that is what we will wish and hope; if otherwise, by the Will of Allah we will easily get rid of him." At the door of the house, `Omar asked the Prophet's permission to go in, and the Prophet gave him that permission. With his sword back into its sheath, 67 `Omar stepped in and beaded directly for the Prophet who at once caught hold of `Omar's garb 68 and the sword-belt saying: "How long, O`Omar, will you not refrain 69 from persecuting, until Allah sends some disaster upon you?" And `Omar replied: "I testify that there is no god but Allah and that you are His Prophet!" Filled with delight the Prophet shouted, "Allahu Akbar! Greater is Allah," and all the Companions repeated it after him.

The gain of two such men as Hamzah and `Omar was a real triumph 70 to the cause 71 of the new Faith. Both were reputed for their great physical strength, their extraordinary courage, and their social position: thus securing for themselves a high prestige and an unparalleled 72 calibre 73 among their mates in Makkah. Due to his courage and heroism, 74 Hamzah earned for himself, as mentioned before, the title of "The Lion of Allah." Had he lived longer, he might have had an unpredicted 75 influence on the destiny  76 of Islam; but he was prematurely 77 cut off 78 during the battle on the field of Ohod. As for `Omar, he was then in the pride of early manhood. His vigorous 79 stature 80 and ruddy 81 heath, added to his boldness, keen glance and steady purpose, all made of him a man who was always ready in word and deed at the decisive moment. His anger was easily aroused, and Quraish stood in awe 82 of him, being certain that whatever he wanted to do he did, without fear of anybody or anything.

`Omar's conversion to Islam opened a new era 83 for this religion to start its public, fearless pratice in Makkah. The House of Al-Arqam began to be abandoned; the claims of the new Faith began to prevail 84 over the ties of kinship, and members of the same family were to be seen openly taking sides here or there. The believers no longer concealed 85 their worship within their own dwellings, but with conscious strength and defiant 86 attitudes assembled 87 in companies around Al-Ka'bah, and there, performed their rites 88 of worship openly. The conversion of `Omar caused a further division in Quraish; it reduced their power and caused them to reconsider their tragedy. 89 In fact, it increased the Muslims' power very greatly and most significantly. 90 In short, `Omar's conversion made the Muslim courage rise, and filled Quraish with dread 91 and uneasiness. This matter had been very decisively settled when `Omar asked the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, one day after his conversion: "Aren't we following the Truth, O Prophet, whether we die or live?" And the Prophet answered, "Yes, by Him in Whose hand is my soul O `Omar, you are following the Truth whether you die or live." "So why," said `Omar earnestly 92 "Do we still meet in secret? By Him Who has sent you with the Truth, you shall call in public." The Prophet's silence meant his approval of what `Omar had suggested. Soon the believers went out, led by the Prophet, in two rows, the first being headed by 93 Hamzah, and the second by`Omar. All headed 94 for Al-Ka'bah, and there, performed the circumambulation 95 and said the prayers, with the leaders of Quraish watching them without daring to utter a single word, or make a motion to wards these two rows headed by Hamzah and `Omar. The conversion of `Omar to Islam reduced the power of Quraish significantly in that `Omar brought with him to the new Faith the tribal loyalties 96 with which he had fought Islam earlier. He did not hide himself or conceal his Islam. On the contrary, as we have seen, he proclaimed his new Faith to all the people, and fought them for not joining him. He did not at all approve of the Muslims hiding themselves, or holding prayers in the outskirts 97 of Makkah, far beyond the reach of Quraish. He continued to struggle against Quraish until he could perform his prayer beside Al-Ka'bah, where his fellow - Muslims, his brethren in Islam, joined him. Since that time, Quraish became certain that no injury 98 inflicted upon Muhammad or his Companions would stop men from embracing 99 the religion of Allah, as long as they could rely upon the tribal protection of `Omar, Hamzah, the Negus of Abyssinia, or others capable of protecting them. May Allah be pleased with you, `Omar, for your conversion to Islam was indeed a conquest 100 - and a very successful one.

After The Grand Event

Years Of Conquest

We have seen that the great event took place in the sixth year of Muhammad's Mission, which means that, after his conversion, `Omar remained with the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, for seven years before the great emigration to Yathrib started. During these seven years, `Omar struggled 1 very heavily, bitterly 2 and terribly 3 against Quraish, in defence of his Faith and his brethren's. He had to undergo various kinds of hardships, 4 and smile in the face of adversities 5 and atrocities 6 practised by the blockheaded 7 enemies among the Quraishites, who had rearranged their front in a final attempt 8 to put an end to this new Religion which had weakened them and destroyed their prestige 9 among all the other tribes of Arabia.

After his conversion, `Omar found himself in a conflict: 10 in his days of idolatory, he used to persecute and torment the new adherents of Islam for their religion; now, he could not forbear 11 to see a Muslim undergo any torment inflicted upon him by a disbeliever; moreover, he made up his mind to put the disbelievers in as much an adversity for their religion as they had put the Muslims in for theirs. And not only that. His real aim, besides, was to put himself in bitter clash 12 with the disbelievers, attacking them and, from them, receiving as much attack as could make him feel equal to his Muslim brethren even in their adversities. Justice in `Omar was, then, beginning to display 13 itself very discernibly: 14 this is the justice that would afterwards be part and parcel 15 of the overall 16 character of the great man: a justice the equal of which the whole world has never known.

Yet the effect of ` Omar's conversion in Makkah was not confined 17 to the public appearance of the Muslims to practise their religion, despite all the dangers they were exposed 18 to at the hands of the disbelievers. That effect extended 19 to comprise 20 other fields of propagation 21 in which `Omar played a very considerable 22 and successful role 23 Now, he was persistent 24 and daring enough to propagate Islam in public, so much so that a large number of people, who had had a longing 25 desire to adopt the new religion but had been afraid to declare that before, now had the courage, under the patronage 26 of `Omar, to decalre 27 their conversion 28 in public and join the community 29 of believers, their brethren. And the Muslims, then, found no interdiction 30 in gathering round Al-Ka'bah in rings defying the wrathful 31 and spiteful 32 looks of the leaders of Quraish who used to sit there.

Still in defence of their gods, and almost losing every hope of stopping the spread of the new religion, the leaders of Quraish took a step forward and decided to boycott 33 the Muslims, in an attempt to press upon them, that they might change their minds and hearts and go back to their fathers' religion, or, at least, that they might be compliant 34  in talking about their gods. But in vain. For two years, the Muslims had to undergo the hardships of this inhuman boycott. `Omar had to have his share of it, but nothing could be done to stop it. He, as well as all the Muslims, had to endure. 35 What filled him with anguish 36 was to see the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings he upon him, suffer as much as the whole Muslim community and even more. `Omar knew that the Prophet could have lived as comfortably and luxuriously 37 as any king or emperor and even better, had he desired it. But Muhammad was the Messenger of Allah, and he had been chosen to spread out His message among blockheaded and hard-hearted people who were willing to sacrifice 38 everything they had to stop the spread of that Message. `Omar knew all that, and yet he used to cry his eyes 39 out whenever he saw the Prophet leading such a hard life, void 40 of all kinds of comfort and luxury enjoyed by all his enemies. `Omar never shed tears in his pre-Islamic days, but after his conversion, he was in the habit of bursting into tears 41 - as almost all true believers did - whenever he heard the words of Allah:  

"Truly, the believers are those whose hearts are scared at the mention of Allah, and when His verses are recited to them, they increase in Faith, and on their Lord they do rely." [ The Glorious Qur'an: Chapter Al-anfal", Verse 2] He would also weep very bitterly whenever he would hear the warning and threatening 42 verses of the Qur'an recited before of by him, be cause he learnt from the Prophet how to live always in awe from Allah.

Again, in his Pre-Islamic days, `Omar's heart softened sometimes at certain circumstances: we have seen how he suppressed 43 his fury and was softened greatly when he saw his sister's face covered with blood on the day of the Great Event. After his conversion, his soft heart was such that he wept, and very bitterly, in most cases. This is why during his caliphate, 44 as we shall see later, he filled everybody with awe, and, at the same time, attracted everybody with his soft, kind and sympathetic 45 heart. This mixture of awe and softness gave him the unique quality of a man who was firm without being violent, and lenient 46 without being weak: another sign of the greatness of our man.

For seven years after his conversion, `Omar remained in Makkah, undertaking 47 the propagation of Islam, protecting the Muslims and stimulating 48 the abominable 49 feelings of the disbelievers by doing all that he wanted to do in the course of propagation in public. All these great deeds were concluded with a wonderful action he took when he decided to emigrate 50 to Madinah. He did not take his decision in secret, nor did he start his departure concealed under the guise 51 of darkness. He rather put on his sword, went to Al-Ka'bah where all the leaders of Quraish were seated as usual, performed the circumambulation seven times, then stopped, looked at his enemies and said:

"Misshapened 52 are the faces: Let anyone who wants his mother to lose him, his son to be orphanized 53 and his wife to be widowed 54 meet me beyond that valley. I am emigrating to Madinah." Nobody, of course dared to move a hand or leg. Very soon after, `Omar departed from Makkah, accompanied by Ayyash-ibn-Abi Rabi'ah, and both took their way to Madinah. The leaf of `Omar's Makkan role in his life was then turned to give way to a new leaf of more and more brilliance 55 in the life of our great man, as well as the life of the whole Muslim community.

Omar's Marked Individuality

Another side of `Omar's marked individuality  1 has to be considered within the overall characteristics 2 of his wonderful personality. He was a man of transparent 3 honesty: honesty in word and deed. Whenever he spoke or counselled, all that he said emanated 4 from his honest transparent heart. And whatever he did was an interpretation 5 of what was there on his honest, transparent mind. No wonder, then, that his profound 6 affection 7 and fondness of the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, were the true signs of gratitude 8 on the part of the disciple 9 towards his master. It was Muhammad's Mission that extricated 10 `Omar from the jeopardies 11 of the dark life and beliefs of his people; and it was that transparent honesty that made him outspoken 12 and daring in his remarks and counsels, even to the Prophet himself; which thing drew him nearer and nearer to his master and guide, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him. And it is for this quality that the Prophet made him his second counsellor after Abu-Bakr.

`Omar's perpetual 13 awe 14 of Allah, his profound affection for the Prophet and his transparent honesty, all caused him to have unique relationships with the Qur'an. He did not recite it as all the other Muslims did, nor did he listen to it recited by others, as everybody else did. The Word of Allah always found its direct way to the transparent mind and heart of `Omar, whose transparent honesty in receiving it, as well as reacting to it, moved all his senses and feelings and put them in the service of the Word of Allah. That is why, in many cases, `Omar was so much in a state of Grace 15 that, when any verse 16 of the Qur'an was recited before him, he unintentionally 17 found his tongue ready to complete the verse recited. It did also happen that in some situations, when `Omar talked about a certain matter, the Word of Allah was revealed to confirm 18 what he said. Moreover, in some other situations, when he indulged 19 in the hope of something, he was fortunate enough to have one or more verses of the Qur'an revealed to fulfil his hope. `Omar's glorification 20 of AI-Ka'bah was such that he hoped the name of Ibrahim, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, be immortalized 21 He knew the wonderful task Ibrahim had been ordered by Allah to do with the help of his son Ismail, i.e. the erection 22 of Al-Ka'bah. So one day, `Omar went to the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, and said to him, "I wish you prayed behind Ibrahim's standing." 23 At once, Gabriel came down with Allah's revelation, fulfilling `Omar's wish: 

"And make an oratory (place of prayer) of Ibrahim's standing." [ Chapter "Al-Baqarah", Verse 125.] Since that day, billions and billions of Muslims recite the verse of Allah, and emulate 24 with each other to say their prayers in Ibrahim's standing, all in fulfilment of `Omar's wish.

Another incident. We have seen how, in his Pre-Islamic days, `Omar was addicted to drinking, as almost all the youth of his time. But after his conversion to Islam, he gave up drinking entirely, not because there were orders forbidding the drinking of wine, as there were no such orders, but because he had been responding to the great wisdom conveyed in Allah's revelation:  

"... Do not approach the prayers while you are intoxicated that you may be conscious of what you say " [ Chapter "Al-Nissa'a", Verse 43.]

Yet `Omar, so filled in heart with Faith and inspiration, was not quite at ease concerning that indefinite 25 prohibition 26 of wine. So one day, he prayed to Allah to show the Muslims an indisputable 27 evidence 28 concerning wine. And there came down the revelation: 

"O you who believe! Wine, indeed, and gambling and the idols and the (divination) arrows are filth of Satan's act. So avoid it (all) that you may thrive." [ Chapter "Al-Ma'idah", Verse 90.]

A third incident which shows the inspiring power in `Omar. His sense of honour always made him solicitous 29 and considerate 30 for all that protected the honour of any Muslim woman. What if this concerned the Mothers of the Faithful, the Prophet's wives? `Omar's frequent attendance 31 to the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, made him discern that the Prophet's wives received various men of diverse 32 characters and attitudes 33 With this `Omar was greatly annoyed and dissatisfied. So one day, taking a watchful care of all that touched the Prophet's wives, he said to the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him,"O Messenger of Allah! Your wives receive the righteous 34 and the libertine. 35 I wish you ordered them to be veiled."36 He kept on requesting the Prophet to do that until Zainab bint Jahsh, a wife of the Prophet's, became furious one day and said to `Omar: "O ibnul-Khattab! Would you force us to obey your order when Allah's revelation comes down in our homes?" And very soon Gabriel came down with Allah's revelation: 

"And if you request of them (the Prophet's wives) any object, then request of them from behind a screen." [ Chapter "Al-Ahzab", Verse 53.]

A fourth incident which shows how `Omar's wishes and aspirations were frequently supported and confirmed by the Qur'an. This is an account related by Ibn-'Abbas, Allah be pleased with him. He says: "The Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, sent a boy from Al-Ansar to summon 37 'Omar to go to the Prophet. When the boy went to `Omar's house, he found the door half open, and `Omar lying on his back. The boy pushed the door open, went in and greeted `Omar who, being fast asleep, did not answer. So the boy went out before `Omar woke up. But when he heard that the boy had come to him, and seen naked 38 parts of his body, he said to himself: "I wish Allah forbade our sons, women, and servants to enter upon us at such a time without permission." then he hastened 39 to the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, and found him sitting after Gabriel had come down with Allah's revelation in this verse: 

"O you who believe! They should certainly take your permission three times those whom you possess as slaves, and those of you who have not attained puberty, before the dawn prayers, and when you take off your clothes in the afternoon and after the night prayers." [ Chapter "Al-Nour", Verse 58.]

So `Omar prostrated 40 himself in submission 41 and gratitude to Allah.

A fifth incident. `Abdulla ibn-'Ubaiy ibn-Saloul was the head of the hypocrites 42 in Madinah. `Omar hated and despised 43 all hypocrites, for the simple reason that they were stripped 44 of every human feeling. When ibn-Saloul died, the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, rose up to lead the prayers at his funeral. 45 `Omar was greatly dissatisfied, and very daringly said to the Prophet: "Are you going to pray for him, when Allah has forbidden you to do that"? But the Prophet said: "Allah has given me the choice, to ask or not to ask forgiveness for the hypocrites." Then `Omar said again: "But he is a hypocrite!" Notwithstanding, 46 the Prophet prayed for ibn-Saloul, and `Omar, with all the hope and daring persistence in trying to beg the Prophet not to do that, pulled the Prophet's garb in an attempt to stop the prayer; but in vain. Allah, then, to make the matter indisputably clear and decisive for future similar cases, sent down His revelation: 

"And do not ever pray on the corpse of any of them (the hypocrites) who is deceased, and do not stand on his grave." [ Chapter "A1-Tawbah", Verse 84.]

The sixth incident deals with the disbelieving captives 47 of Badr. `Omar gave his counsel that all those captives must be beheaded, 48 irrespective49 of any blood relationships between them and some Muslims. Abu Bakr and some other companions of the Prophet had had a different opinion. They had given their counsel that those captives should be held to ransom; 50 and the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, approved of Abu-Bakr's opinion. That was something naturel, as the Prophet always sided with lenience 51 sympathy and mercy! He took the ransom frothe enemy and set them free. The next day, `Omar went to the Prophet and found him sitting with Abu-Bakr. Both were crying. Upon asking why the Prophet and his companion were crying, the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, said: "This is because my companions who have taken the ransom of the disbelievers were about to undergo a heavy torment for that," and added that noble verses had been revealed in approval of what `Omar had seen concerning the captives, and in condemnation 52 of ransom taking. The verses say:

  "It is not fitting for a Prophet to have prisoners of war until he has thoroughly subdued the land. You desire the temporal goods of this world; but Allah desires (for you) the Hereafter, and Allah is Mighty, Wise. Had it not been for a previous ordainment from Allah, a severe torment would have reached you for (the ransom) you have taken." [ Chapter "Al-Anfa1", Verses 67 and 68.]

What `Omar had inspiredly counselled the Prophet with, was a prediction 53 to some verses that had not been revealed then. It so happened that after Badr, Gabriel came down with the revelation of Allah: 

"Say: If it be that your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your mates or your kindred; the wealth that you have gained; the commerce in which you fear a decline; and the dwellings in which you delight - are dearer to you than Allah, and his Messenger, and the striving in His cause -; then wait until Allah brings about His decision; and Allah does not guide the sinful people." [ Chapter "Al-Tawbah", Verse 24.]

That was `Omar's marked individuality, and those were his transparent soul and his great power of inspiration. Allah's response to His Messenger's request and prayer to strengthen Islam by either Abu-Jahl or Omar ibnul-Khattab, and His choice of `Omar as the nearer and more beloved to Him are very significant. What we have seen in the personality of `Omar is a very clear evidence of that. His conversion to Islam was really a successful conquest, not only of his own heart, mind and soul, but also of the hearts, minds and souls of hundreds of the people who, being protected and patronized 54 by him, abandoned their fathers' religions and adopted Islam. And `Omar's conversion to Islam stabbed 55 the dignity of the leaders of Quraish in the heart, and put their active persecution of the poor and weak Muslims to a standstill. 56 And `Omar's emigration to Madinah was a great victory to Islam. It added a great deal to the new power gained by the Muslims through the fusion 57 of Al-Ansar and Al Muhajireen in a wonderful rally 58 under the banner of The new Muslim State that had been established there. And `Omar, the wise counsellor of the Prophet, was a man of opinion, whose very words either completed the verses of the Qur'an, or, as we have seen, were supported and confirmed by it, or wished for some thing that the Qur'an came down to fulfil. No wonder, then, that the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, said: "If there be a Prophet after me, that would be `Omar ibnul-Khattab."

Arimul-Mu'mineen The Commander of the Faithful

With the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, `Omar was the second counsellor after Abu-Bakr. His counsels and his opinions were always taken into the best consideration. We have seen how the Qur'an, in several cases, came down to corroborate 1 the counsels and opinions `Omar very honestly and daringly gave. And this is why the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, once said: "Allah has set the truth on `Omar's tongue and in his heart." `Omar had played that role since the very day he testified, at the house of Al-Arqam, that there was no god but Allah and that Muhammad was His Prophet. He kept on playing his role with all the honesty and faithfulness he had, while the Prophet was alive. And when the Prophet passed away, he 2 played the same role with Abu-Bakr, the first caliph of Islam, as his first counsellor. `Omar's severity with Abu-Bakr's lenience formed a wonderful governing body that went on very successfully while Abu-Bakr was alive. This state of affairs did not last longer than two years, after

which Abu-Bakr followed his most beloved companion and master, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him. It was quite natural for  Abu-Bakr, Allah be pleased with him, to recommend, 3 in the illness of his last days, the man who would be his successor. 4 The inspired choice was `Omar ibnul-Khattab. With all the wisdom he had learnt from his master, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, Abu-Bakr knew that the new Muslim state would be in need of a man like `Omar ibnul-Khattab with his wonderful architectural 5 mind that would lead the Muslims to the great prosperous 6 future that was awaiting them.

`Omar, then, became the second caliph, or "Amirul Mu'mineen" (The Commander of the Faithful), the new title he was the first to gain. The first thing he did after being nominated 7 as caliph, was an address 8 he delivered to the Muslims, in which he introduced, very honestly and very clearly, his constitution 9 as commander. In his cordial 10 address to the Muslims, `Omar said:

"I had been in the company of the Messenger of Allah, and a servant of his; and he had been, as no body else, of extreme lenience and mercy; and he had been, as Allah says of him:  

"... to the believers compassionate and merciful." [ The Glorious Qur'an: Chapter "Al-Tawbah", Verse 128.] And I had been at his disposal, 11 an unsheathed 12 sword, until he sheathed me or let me go. Such had I been with the Messenger of Allah, until he passed away, with me much pleased. Many thanks to Allah for this, and with it I am greatly happy. Then Abu-Bakr came into power to manage the affairs of the Faithful; and he was, as you all know, of much graciousness, 13 generosity and lenience; and I was a servant of his and an assistant, mixing my severity with his lenience, thus being at his disposal an unsheathed sword, until he sheathed me or let me go. Such had I been with him until he passed away, with me much pleased. Many thanks to Allah for this, and with it I am greatly happy.

And now, brethren, I have been nominated to manage your affairs. So be aware, 14 then, that that severity has been weakened, but it will be used only against those who are oppressive 15 and aggressive 16 to the Muslims. But to those who seek safety, religion and good will, I shall be more lenient than each of them to the others. I will never allow anybody to oppress another, or be aggressive to him; for, then, I will put his cheek to the ground and set my foot on the other cheek until he yields 17 to the truth. And after practising this severity of mine, I will put my cheek to the ground for those who are virtuous 18 and content.

I will not levy 19 any taxes on your products or on any of the booties Allah has bestowed 20 upon you, except what is due; 21; and I pledge 22 not to expend it except where it should be expended. It is incumbent 23 upon me to increase your grants 24 and livelihoods and fix up, for you, every means of defence, God willing 25 It is incumbent upon me not to throw you into jeopardies, nor confine you in your front posts; 26 and I pledge that if you stay away on missions, I will be responsible for your families until you return to them.

Therefore, fear Allah, Oh servants of Allah. And help me against yourselves by leaving me in peace; and help me against myself by ordering beneficence 27 and forbidding abomination, 28 and by giving me good advice and counsel in all the affairs of yours Allah has charged 29 me with."

With this constitution derived 30 from `Omar's Faith and his clear understanding of the Qur'an, and based upon the teachings and preachings of his master, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, `Omar began his age which marked a new epoch 31 in the history,

Not only of the Muslims, but of the whole world at large. After `Omar, the whole world has never seen his equal as a governor, nor has it known the like of him as a man. He was unique in everything, so much so that some of those who had been dazzled 32 by his wonderful qualities, have assumed 33 that he was but a myth 34 invented by some intelligent Muslim writers, and that no human being could be of such a baffling  35 personality. But those who know `Omar's life very well will not be so baffled. They will always remember how `Omar was chosen by Allah to strengthen Islam in response to the Prophet's prayer and request to his Lord to choose the nearer and more beloved to Him for that purpose; and they will always remember his sound 36 counsels to the Prophet, and the several wonderful situations and cases in which the Archangel 37 Gabriel came down with Allah's revelation in support and confirmation of what he said; and they will al ways remember his conversion to Islam, and how it paralysed 38 the inimical 39 activity of Quraish, and stopped their inhuman castigation 40 of the first poor and weak Muslims. They will always remember `Omar's daring power, his transparent honesty, his inspired opinions and counsels, his patronage and protection of the Muslims in Makkah before his emigration to Madinah, his heroic strife 41 in the first battles against disbelief, and, in short, his most integral 42 personality that has always baffled, and will remain to baffle, the whole world, until Allah inherits the earth and all on it. Such a great man with all those wonderful qualities knew where to take his place in the presence of the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him. He was his servant, disciple, companion and counsellor, and from him he could learn a great deal. And when the Prophet passed away, after nominating Abu-Bakr to lead the Muslim congregration 43 in the prayers during his illness, `Omar, most willingly and submissively, took his place beside Abu-Bakr, the first Caliph, as his servant, companion and counsellor. `Omar believed in the Prophet's declaration that Abu-Bakr's faith was weightier 44 than the faith of the whole "Ummah" (Muslim community), including `Omar. And ,Omar would never forget Abu-Bakr's stand against apostasy 45 and the apostates' 46 riot, 47 after the Prophet had passed away. Such a stand will immortalize Abu-Bakr who, seeing `Omar tending to leniency towards the apostates, held him from the neck and said, with all the power of Faith, "Coercive 48 in your Pre-Islamic days, and strengthless now) `Omar By Allah, if they (the apostates) abstain 49 from paying the slightest thing they used to pay to the Prophet, I will fight them for that as long as the sword remains in my hand." Had it not been for that faithful powerful attitude of Abu-Bakr's, Islam would have come to a tragic end, and become part of an old-world history. And we are told that it was Abu-Bakr alone, from among all the Prophet's companions, who heard Gabriel revealing to Muhammad: 

"Indeed, you will not guide those whom you love, but Allah guides whoever He wishes." [ The Glorious Qur'an: Chapter "Al-Qasas", Verse 56.] That was on the occasion of Abu-Talib's death. And it was Abu Bakr who sacrificed all his wealth to Allah and His Messenger, and bought the enslaved 50 weak Muslims, like Bilal-ibn-Rabah, and offered them their freedom, making them his brethren in Islam, the religion of Allah that condemns 51 slavery in all its forms. And it was Abu-Bakr who, alone, gained the title of "The All- Truthful Friend", and who was chosen by the Prophet to accompany him in his emigration to Madinah, and to stay hiding with him in the cave of Thawr. And it was Abu-Bakr about whom the Prophet said:

"Indeed Allah, above His Heavens, hates to see that Abu-Bakr is considered at fault." No other companion of the Prophet's reached that rank of a man who usod to say: "If one of my feet is inside Paradise, and the other outside it, I will not be safe from Allah's shrewdness." 52 This was the great man who succeeded the Prophet after he had passed away. And had Abu Bakr lasted longer as the first Caliph of the Muslims, the newly-established Muslim State would have reached a status 53 never to be matched by any other state in the world, old and new. But Allah had ordained that that aspired status would be reached at the hands of `Omar, the Second Caliph and the Commander of the Faithful.

We have seen `Omar addressing the Muslims the very day he was elected 54 Caliph. In this address we have a pledge and a confidence: a pledge from the ruler and Commander upon himself to be responsible for every soul and everything in his state, providing them with every means of security and freedom; and a confidence, from the depth of the heart, of the Muslims in their ruler and Commander. And in between the pledge and the confidence, internal reforms and external conquests 55 came one after the other in rapid succession 56. 

`Omar was the ideal Muslim ruler who had all the great ability to hold the balance of justice with a very steady and powerful hand. This justice, the like of which the world has never known so far, was a combination of several sources: a part of it `Omar did in -herit from his ancestors; 57 another part he did derive 58 from the over-all constitution of his personality; a third part he did acquire from the experiences of his life; and the most important part he did gain from the instructions of his religion; and all these component 59 parts of his justice made of him the man who was feared and reverred 60 by all other men, and the ruler in whom all his people found not only their security, but their freedom as well.

Justice, in its simplest and purest sense, is equality among the people in rights and obligations, 61 in the execution 62 of punishments and in giving rewards; no distinction between the rich and the poor, the powerful and the weak, those who are kinsmen to the ruler and those who are otherwise. And `Omar's justice was not an exception. As the Head of the State, he felt himself responsible for every soul and everything existent on the land of Islam. This is why he treated all the Muslims alike; not only that: but he treated all the people under his rule, Muslims or otherwise, alike. And he reached the summit 63 of justice when he dealt with his own sons as he did with any other members of his community indiscriminately 64 . The best evidence in this respect is the story of his own son `Abdur-Rahman. Narrators state that `Abdur-Rahman ibn-Omer got drunk one evening with a friend of his while they were in Egypt. In the morning they felt rueful 65 of what they had done the night before, and decided to go to `Amr ibnul-'As, the Governor of Egypt, and ask him to chasten 66 them by executing the legal punishment 67 upon them. Disliking to punish the Caliph's son publicly, `Amr scourged 68 `Abdur-Rahman in the patio 69 of his house. The news at once reached `Omar in Madinah. He was greatly irritated, 70 and wrote to `Amr ibnul `As reprimandingly, 71 commanding him to send `Abdur-Rahman at once to Madinah, which thing `Amr immediately did, writing to the Caliph regret fully, and confirming that he had punished his son in the same way as he punished everybody else, under the same circumstances, in the patio of his house. But `Omar did not accept that justification, 72 nor did he approve of the legal punishment inflicted upon his son by `Amr. He waited until `Abdur-Rahman reached Madinah, sick and terribly fatigued 73 of the journey. Yet `Omar did not care; he rather handled the Islamic Law, and administered 74 the punishment upon his son in public. And narrators say that some time after the punishment, `Abdur-Raliman's health deteriorated; 75 and when his father saw him in the throes 76 of death, he did nothing more than say to him: "If you meet my master, the Messenger of Allah, Peace and Blessings be upon him, tell him that your father administers the legal punishments, and observes 77 the bounds 78 Allah has placed on man's actions."

With `Amr ibnul-'As again there is another incident in which `Omar's justice is practised in a manner that has surprised and baffled the whole world. `Amr's son was one day racing with an Egyptian youth of his age, when the latter outdistanced 79 the Governor's son in the race. But `Amr's son was displeased, and beat the Egyptian saying to him: "How dare you outdistance the son of the most notable parents?" 80 the Egyptian went to the Caliph in Madinah and presented his grievance 81 at which `Omar sent for `Amr and his son to come to Madinah at once. When they arrived `Omar said to the Egyptian in public: "Now beat the son of the most notable parents." Then, turning to `Amr ibnul-'As, `Omar gave his everlasting 82 utterance: 83 "How dare you enslave people who have been born free?!" This was always `Omar's policy with all his vicegerents 84 and walis 85 and he insisted on following that policy, and never hesitated to be so firm and stern, giving them no opportunity, under any circumstances, to deviate 86 from the right path, or yield to any kind of corruption. 87

`Omar's relationships and policy with his vicegerents used to be clearly defined in such addresses to the people as: "Brethren of Islam! Let me confirm to you that I have not sent you vicegerents to flog 88 your bodies or usurp your properties. But I always send them to you to teach you the principles and values of your religion, as well as the tradition of your Prophet. If they do otherwise, let your grievances reach me at once, and, by Him in Whose Hand is my soul, I will certainly retaliate 89 upon them...." Such a declaration on the part of `Omar must needs turn the people into real censors 90 upon their rulers, and create constructive 91 criticism which would always lead them to follow the right path, otherwise complaint after complaint would reach the Caliph who would never be lenient with any of his walis.

Besides being the Caliph and Commander of the whole Muslim Community, `Omar was a direct and actual ruler of Madinah, the Capital of the Muslim empire that was to come very soon and emerge 92 as one of the greatest empires the world had ever known. Through his direct rule in Madinah, `Omar set up the ideal government which has been surprising and baffling to the whole world up till the present day. World history and world historians have tired 93 themselves in trying to reach the depths of that wonderful personality that the rulers at all times and in all places have been aspiring to imitate. 94 Omar was a man who undertook to care for both the private and public conditions of all Muslims and Non-Muslims alike, thus giving the example to all rulers throughout history, those who consider themselves greater than the surface transitory 95 problems of their people.

How about a ruler, like `Omar, who used to walk `about at night to explore 96 the conditions of his people, and get information about how they were living? Such walks were always a blessing to the whole community. In one of those walks, and in the silence of midnight, he heard a woman complaining of her husband's absence away from her and chanting: 97

"O by God, had it not been for my fear of Allah, this bed would have been shaken to its foundations by some illicit 98 act committed on it." At once `Omar went to his daughter Hafsa and asked her:"How long can a woman endure the pain of her husband's absence?" And Hafsa replied: "A month, two, three, till a maximum of four months."

Upon that, the very conscientious, equitable 99 and merciful ruler sent for the woman's husband to come back home from the Holy War he had been joining. Moreover, a command was given to all husbands taking part in any Holy War not to be away from their wives any longer than four months.

And how about the story of the milk woman-seller, and her argument with her God-fearing daughter? The mother wanted her daughter to adulterate 100 the milk by mixing it with water. The daughter protested saying that it was immoral 101 to do it. But then the mother said that nobody, not even `Omar himself, would see them while they were adulterating the milk, upon which the daughter shouted that if `Omar did not see them, `Omar's God, the Knower, the Cognizant and 102 the Seer would do. `Omar was happy to hear that, and went straight away to his house where he called his sons to come before him. He asked for the one of them who had not been married yet, and told him that he had chosen his bride for him. The son welcomed the choice, and the bride was no other than the milk-woman's daughter. Years passed and this milk- woman's daughter, `Omar's daughter-in-law, gave birth to a baby: a little girl who grew up, and was married to `Abdulaziz-ibn-Marwan, to give him, and the whole world with him, the fifth orthodox 103 caliph of Islam: `Omar-ibn-'Abdulaziz.

And how about the story of the hungry children whom `Omar heard crying with pain, because they could not find what to eat? Their old mother was sitting powerless, not knowing what to do, except to invoke 104 God against `Omar, complaining of him to the Just. When he knew what they needed, he himself went and brought a sack 105 of flour and a container of oil, carried them on his back and refused to let anybody else carry them for him saying "Nobody will carry off my sins for me on the Day of Judgment." He went to the old woman, helped her to prepare food for her children, and remained with them until the children ate and then went to bed. The old woman's gratitude was such that she said to `Omar, not knowing who he was: "In the morning, I will go to `Omar and tell him that if `Omar had forgotten us, Allah had not, but had rather sent you to help us and save the children." `Omar's response 106 was nothing more than this: "When you go to `Omar, you will find me there."

And how about the story of `Omar and the horse? He once bought a horse, and after riding it for a while, in order to try it, he found that there was a defect in it. So he wanted to return it to its owner, thinking that the latter might have deceived him, but the man refused to take his horse back. Nothing did the Commander of the Faithful do, except to lodge 107 his complaint with a judge against the horse-seller who decided to choose the judge himself, and he actually chose a man with the name of "Shuraih", a judge well-reputed to be very equitable. `Omar stood before the judge, who, having studied the case and listened to both men, gave his verdict addressing `Omar:

"Take away what you have bought or give it back as unimpaired 108 and flawless 109 as when you took it." What did `Omar do then? Did he give commands that the judge be kept in jail? Did he discharge 110  him from his post? No. He was rather happy to hear the verdict, 111 and, looking at the judge he said, "Jurisdiction 112 is none but this." Then he awarded 113 Shuraih for his justice by appointing him as the "Judge of Koufah", a post many reputable judges, then, aspired to take.

And how about the story of the Yamanite cloths? When those cloths came in quantities from Yaman, `Omar distributed them equally in public among the people. Some days later he was seen wrapped 114 in a garb that matched with his size, which meant that he had taken for himself more cloth than he had given everybody else. One day, with that long garb on,

`Omar went up the pulpit 115 to address the people and urge them to join the Holy War. He started his address saying:

"O Brethren! Listen and obey."

But instead of being answered with warm shouts and loud applause, a strong voice was heard saying to him:

"No listening and no obedience."

And `Omar, very calmly, looked at the speaker, who chanced to be `Abdur-Rahman ibn-'Awf, a well-known companion of the Prophet's, and said:

"Why? May Allah have mercy on you!" `Abdur-Rahman ibn-'Awf, with a daring confidence, said:

"Supposedly you took the same length of the cloth as you gave each one of us. How, then, have you had that garb tailored 116 to you when you are taller than anyone of us? You must have favoured 117 ourself with more cloth."

In defence of himself, `Omar summoned his son `Abdullah to explain how all that had happened, and `Abdullah proceeded forward to declare that he had relinquished 118 his share of the cloth to his father, to allow him to have a suitable garb tailored for him to meet the people in. Upon hearing that, `Abdur-Rahman ibn-'Awf, now being convinced and calmed down, said to `Omar.

"Now we listen and obey." And how about the story of the woman's dowry? 119 In an address to the people, `Omar advised them not to exaggerate 120 in paying the dowry. But in a very daring and astonishing argument, which is strange to the world of today, a woman raised her voice addressing the Commander of the Faithful:

"O`Omar! How have you forgotten Allah's Revelation: 

"And if you want to substitute a wife for another wife, and had given one a qintar (about 45 kilo grams) (of gold), take back nothing of it. Would you take it by slander, and a manifest wrong?" [ The Glorious Qur'an: Chapter: "Al-Nissa'a", verse 20.]

`Omar kept silent for a while, and after deliberating 121 the woman's logical argument, he said to himself and to the people, as though to let the whole world hear and man's history record:

"This is where a woman is right, and that is where `Omar has made a mistake. O 'Omar!

All the people know better than you do!"

And how about `Omar's private life at home? His household had to suffer a great deal in their attempts to keep in conformity 122 with the master's commands and desires. `Omar's wife lived as any other wife did. She was not allowed to eat sweets. As almost every body else did, `Omar used to light at night a small torch in the light of which he considered the affairs of the State. But if anybody went to talk to him about private matters, having nothing to do with the State's affairs, he put out the light of the torch, as it was a special property of the State. Nobody had the right to use it in private matters.

Whenever he wanted to command the people to do or not to do something, `Omar always started with his household. He used to gather them and address them saying:

"Everybody has an eye upon you, as the bird of prey 123 on the flesh. I swear that if any prohibition is done by any of you, he or she shall be doubly punished." Because of the little subsistence 124 he allocated 125 for himself from the Treasury, `Omar had to resort to trade for his and the household's livelihood. He used to borrow money, and very often did he find himself in difficulty, so much so that many times did he find himself unable to pay back his debts in time. Yet the debtors were not tolerant 126 and always kept on asking and asking for the repayment of their debt! without any consideration of the man's post or circumstances.

And when 'omar was in the throes 127 of death, nothing could distract 128 him from asking about his debts, or commanding his son `Abdullah to pay them back saying: "If the property of `Omar's family is sufficient for paying back the debts, that will do; otherwise, ask Banu-Adiy. If they fail to do it, ask Quraish, and do not go farther than that." But `Abdur-Rahman ibn-'Awf, who was present, suggested that those debts could be borrowed from the Treasury, and paid back to their owners, till they were brought back to the Treasury. `Omar first rejected 129 that suggestion, but then he summoned his son `Abdullah, and said to him: "Will you guarantee 130 that?" And `Abdullah said: "I will."

He fulfilled his promise to his father, and not later than a week after the burial 131 of his father, `Abdullah carried the borrowed money and paid it back to `Uthman, the new Caliph, and brought the witnesses who had witnessed his pledge to his father before, to testify now that the money had been repaid to the Treasury. What happened was that a small house

belonging to `Omar was sold; and the price was used for the repayment of his debts. This is why that house remained for a long time after it had been sold, bearing the name of "The Repayment House".

The Ramadab (Famine) 132 Year: `Omar' s success in tackling 133 all the problems of construction and organization was only parallelled by his success in dispelling 134 all the griefs and worries befalling his subjects. He understood very well the Prophetic Tradition which said: "Everyone of you is a guardian and responsible for those in his charge; the Imam (leader) is a guardian and responsible for his subjects; the man, in his home, is a guardian and responsible for his household; the woman, concerning her husband's property, is a guardian and responsible for what she is entrusted 135 with; the servant, in his master's house, is a guardian and responsible for his custody. 136 So everybody is a guardian and responsible for the charge entrusted to him." And the Commander of the Faithful took very much care to bear that responsibility to the utmost degree of perfection. The nature of his position as he understood it, and as all other rulers of today should, was that he considered himself the guardian of every being on the land of the whole Islamic State. "If a mule 137 stumbled 138 in Iraq, I will be responsible for that before Allah: Why I had not repaired the road for it." And here lies the secret of his greatness. Awe from Allah was always the light that showed him the right path. No wonder, then, that anything he said or did was but an inspiration accompanying the great genius of a man who was always conscious of the Presence of Allah: the Seer, the Cognizant and the Knower. And if `Omar had earned for himself the title of "The Great Architect 139 of Islam" in matters dealing with the construction and organization of the State, as we shall see later, he can also be called "The most noble, equitable, and merciful guardian of all his subjects."

We have seen examples of how he was all the time living the problems, worries and troubles of his subjects, and how he always exerted 140 himself to find solutions for such problems, and thus dispel his people's worries and relieve them of all their troubles. The whole question is a matter of mutual love between the ruler and the subjects that will inevitably 141 lead to mutual 142 confidence between them. It is not for nothing that Allah, in the Glorious Qur'an, gives His command: 

"Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger and the rulers from you." [ The Glorious Qur'an: Chapter:  "Al-Nissa'a", Verse 59.] This, beside other innumerable 143 incidents in the reign 144 of the Commander of the Faithful, might explain why `Omar's earnest zeal always pushed him to do what might raise him to the rank where he, as a ruler and guardian of the Muslim Community (Ummah), would come next to Allah and his Messenger in matters of obedience.

Towards the end of the eighteenth century of the Islamic era, the Arabs of Hidjaz, Tihama and Najd were grievously stricken by drought, which case lasted for over nine months during which 145 no single drop of rain fell until the earth became ash-grey. 146 This is why the period is called "The Ramadah Year" or "The Ash Year", indicating the dryness which inflicted the Arabs of those regions with a famine the like of which they had never suffered before.

During such a disaster, `Omar's personality manifested 147 itself in a manner never to be found in any other ruler all through the world history, ancient and modern. That personality which combined firmness with brilliance, endurance with vigour of action, resignation to the Will of Allah with incessant 148 communications with his vicegerents to send whatever help they could, was the most dynamic force that implemented 149 the will of Allah to the benefit of the people. It was the gracious hand that was stretched out to drive away the disaster, and save the people from starvation. 150`Omar's time, thought and energy were almost confined, day and night, to the wiping out of the tears of the crying youngsters and to the relieving of the pains of the elders - all grievously suffering from the beginning of starvation. During the day, he used to tire himself out in considering the multitudinous 151 affairs of the people. At night, and after saying the last prayers in the mosque, he used to go home and pray as long as he could with his mind, heart and soul, all the time connected to the Heavens, in earnest request that the famine be extinguished. 152 Then he had a little sleep after which he used to wake up quickly, go out, and walk about, here and there, till he reached the tents of the Bedoums who had come to stay around Madinah in quest of food and water.

The Commander of the Faithful used to walk about by almost every house during the last part of the night to check the people's conditions, doing that at times alone, and at other times accompanied by one of his subordinates 153 In most cases, the two were seen going about with sacks of flour and oil, and `Omar distributed them among those who were in need, and perhaps helped them in making the food himself. When the drought was aggravated, 154 and starvation drew nearer and nearer, `Omar did not hesitate to write to his vicegerents in Palestine, Iraq and Syria, commanding them to send food and clothes as early as they could. The first of those was `Amr-ibnul-'As, the Governor of Palestine. `Omar sent him this message:

"In the Name of Allah, Ar-Rahman, the Ever Merciful".

From the servant of Allah, `Omar, the Commander of the Faithful, to the disobedient Ibnul `As. Are you going to wait and see me and everybody here starving, when you and yours are living in affluence? 155 Succour, 156 Succour, Succour!"

`Amr's reply came to `Omar immediately, begging him not to worry, and assuring that a long caravan of camels loaded with food and clothes would very soon arrive in Madinah. This did really happen; other vicegerents did the same thing and sent whatever succour they could to `Omar in Madinah. Therefore, he sent men to receive the food and clothes the moment they arrived in Arabia, and then disperse 157 everywhere in the desert to give whatever help the Bedoums needed. They slaughtered 158 camels and distributed their meat, and gave the Bedoums flour, oil and clothes.

In Madinah, `Omar himself slaughtered camels everyday: those who were short of food went either to eat and satisfy their hunger, or take home what sufficed 159 them and their households of meat and flour. Thousands of hungry people went everyday for either purpose. As for `Omar himself, he found pleasure in eating with the people. He never favoured himself or his household with anything more than he offered his subjects. Then there came a time when he deprived 160 himself from eating meat, and after a while, added fat and milk as two other kinds of prohibited food. He enjoined 161 upon himself only one kind of food to eat morning and evening: oil. And he kept being so harsh 162 and stern upon himself until his face darkened, and emaciation 163 was all that could be seen of him in place of the great stature and the ruddy face, signs of the good health `Omar enjoyed before "The Ash Year". The Caliph's household also had to undergo the same harshness and sternness he enjoined upon himself. He never allowed any of them to relish 164 eating while the people around were hungry. He was filled with grief for what had been afllicting the people, and he underwent the pains of worry and concern about the people's affairs, so much so that his companions were filled with apprehension for his safety.

Amidst all those disastrous 165 circumstances, the Commander of the Faithful used to perform long prayers in which he prayed Allah, in awe and fear, not to ordain the extinction of the Muslim Community (Muhammad's Ummah) to be at his hands. He one day went up the pulpit and addressed the people, reminding them that what they had been afflicted with might be the result of Allah's discontent with him alone, or with all the Muslims excluding him, or with all of them together. But whether it was this or that or otherwise, they had to repent 166 whatever sins they might have committed and ask for Allah's forgiveness. Then `Omar called them for the prayer for rain which they all performed behind him. A few days later, rain fell heavily. It seemed as though Allah had responded to `Omar's prayers. That was what `Omar had been taught by his friend and master, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, i.e. to perform the prayer for rain whenever there was drought, and ask for Allah's forgiveness thenceforth. 167 That is the guidance of the revelation of Allah in the Glorious Qur'an: 

"So I said: `Ask forgiveness from your Lord; for certainly He is Ever-Forgiving. He will said rain to you in abundance." [ The Glorious Qur'an: Chapter: "Noah", verses , 10, 11.]

During "The Ash Year" `Omar suspended 168 the collection of the poor-due; 169 but the year after, when conditions became better, he sent the tax-collectors every where to levy the alms, 170  in double value, then divide half of it among the badly-off 171 people of the tribes, and bring to him the other half, to go to the Treasury. May Allah be pleased with you, O `Omar, the most honest and God-fearing guardian of Islam and the Muslims.

Omar's Martyrdom 1

The enemies of Islam would not leave a man like `Omar to carry on his wonderful achievements in the service of Islam and the Muslims. And the venomous 2 Rancours 3 that were still existent in the hearts of the Persian and Byzantine slaves would never make them forget that it was `Omar who had caused them to lead that life of servility. 4

`Omar was one day walking in Madinah when a Persian youth, named "Fairouz" and surnamed "`Abu-Lu'lu'ah", met him. That youth was a slave under "Al-Mugheerah- ibn-Shu'bah", and had been taken captive after the conquest of Nahawand. To the Commander of the Faithful, he complained of his master saying that he had imposed upon him four dirhams to be paid every day. `Omar asked him about his job, and the answer was that he worked as a carpenter, a blacksmith and a house painter. Then `Omar remarked that the tax his master had imposed upon him was quite fair, but the youth was not happy with that remark, and went away full of indignation. This story is nothing more than a spurious 5 pretext which might have been plotted 6 to kill the Commander of the Faithful.

`Omar met that youth again while he was in the company of some friends of his. He called him and said: "I have been informed that you claim to be able to make a mill 7 that grinds 8 by the power of the wind." The youth asserted 9 that he was. So `Omar said to him: "Then make us one," to which the youth answered: "I will certainly make you a mill that will be the chit-chat 10 of all the people in the cities." When the youth went away, `Omar said to those with him: "The slave has threatened me already."

`Omar could not do anything against that abominable 11 Magian 12 because, according to the Islamic law, a man can never be convicted 13 on the basis of suspicion 14 or uncertainty. So one day, one of the blackest days in the history of mankind, at dawn in the mosque, when `Omar started to lead the Muslims in prayer saying: "Greater is Allah" (Allahu Akbar), that devil, "`Abu-Lu'lu'ah," came unnoticed out of his hiding place in a dark corner of the mosque, as a venomous serpent 15 coming out of its dark pit, 16 without being noticed. He went straight towards `Omar, and, with a dagger in his hand, aimed three deadly stabs at the pure body in the back, at which the Commander of the Faithful fell down on the ground with a heavy effusion 17 of blood. Above all things, what concerned him was the continuation of the prayer. He took the hand of `Abdur-Rahman-ibn-'Awf and sent him ahead to lead the prayer. Then he said: "Catch that dog; he has killed me," as though he knew it was that Magian dog who had committed the hideous 18 crime.

`Omar was afterwards carried to his home. He was out of his senses. One of the people around said: "Wake him up so that he may say his prayer." The call to prayer brought him back to his senses; he said: "Oh yes! the prayer! No fortune in Islam for him who abandons his prayer!'' Then he demanded to be helped to perform ablution, 19 after which he said his prayer. When he was assured that his murderer was "`Abu-Lu'lu'ah," he said: "Praise be to Allah Who has not ordained my murder to be committed by a man who can argue with me before Allah on the plea 20 that he has once prostrated 21 to Him."

When the last hour approached, and there was no single hope of recovery, `Omar commanded his son `Abdullah to go to `Aa'ishah, the Mother of the Faithful, and ask her permission to have him buried beside his favourite brothers: the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, and Abu-Bakr, Allah be pleased with him. She gave him that permission.

The martyrdom of `Omar-ibnul-Khattab, as we have said at the beginning of this chapter, came to answer for the venomous rancours that filled the hearts of the Persian and Byzantine slaves. It is always related that `Abu-Lu'lu'ah" used to stroke 22 with his hand the heads of any Persian captives whenever he met them, and say: "These Arabs have devoured 23 my liver. 24 This statement shows the bitter hatred that Magian dog bore against Islam and the Muslims. No wonder, then, that he frequented the dwelling-places of "Al-Hormozan" the ex-governor of "Al-Ahwaz" who was conquered by the Muslims, and "Jufainah Al-' Anbari", so that the three of them might take revenge from the Commander of the Faithful under the banner of whose religion, and within the scope of whose justice, they were living in safety.

  It has been related that the Prophet, Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon him, one day seeing `Omar with a shirt on, asked him: "Is your shirt a new one or has it been previously worn?" When `Omar said, "It has been previously worn, o Messenger of Allah," the Prophet said, "Wear the new, live benignly 25 and die a martyr. And may Allah offer you happiness in this world and in the Hereafter."

And `Omar died a martyr reciting these words from the Glorious Qur'an: 

  "And the Command of Allah is a decree determined." [ Chapter "Al-Ahzab", verse 38.] 

Before The Grand Event

1 event a. a happening, usually an important one. 
2 tribe a. social group made up of people of the same race, beliefs, customs, language, etc.
3 well-off adj. rich; wealthy.
4 violence a. very great force in action or feeling. 
5 brutal adj. very cruel; void of tender human feelings.
6 inherit v. receive (qualities, property, etc.) left by someone who has died.
7 severity a. the quality of being unkind and harmful in treatment.
8 adoption adj. formal approval; acceptance. 
9 ruthless adj. without mercy.
10 suppress v. prevent from appearing. 
11 Pre-Islamic adj. belonging to the period before the rise of Islam.
12 wrestling a. sport of fighting by holding and throwing the body.
13 mates a. fellows and friends.
14 courting a. speaking gently and spending time with (a woman one hopes to marry).
15 annual adj. yearly.
16 contest n. struggle in which two or more people compete for victory. 
17 recital n. performance of poetry or otherwise given by one performer. 
18 dates n. small brown sweet fruits with long stones.
19 worship v. show great respect, admiration, etc.
20 devour v. eat up quickly and hungrily. 
21 trivial adj trifling; of very little or no importance.
22 mentality n. ability and powers of the mind.
23 disputes n. quarrels that might lead to fighting. 
24 influential adj. having great effect. 
25 eliminating n. removing or getting rid of.
26 broad-shouldered ness  the state of having broad shoulders. 
27 scared adj. put into, or being in, a state of fear or anxiety
28 prudence n. sagaciousness; discretion; wisdom in worldly affairs.
29 zeal n. enthusiasm.
30 dignity n.   true worth and nobleness of character.
31 union n. state of being joined into one.
32 prestige n. general respect and admiration of others for someone. 
33 disperse v. scatter in different directions.
34 nullify v. cause to have no effect.
35 aspiration n. a strong desire to achieve something high or great. 
36 condemn v. express strong disapproval of.
37 satirize V. show the foolishness or triviality of something.
38 inflict v. force something (unwanted or unpleasant) on someone.
39 torture n.   severe pain or suffering caused in the mind or body
40 discern v. notice.
41 outcome n. result.
42 hideous adj.  having a terrible effect on the senses.
43 audacity n. audacity n.
44 check v.  control; hold back.
45 conscious mind mind that is fully awake to be able to think and will
46 occur v. happen; take place.
47 record v. write down so that it will be known.

The Grand Event

1 disbeliever n. person who does not believe in an established religion. 
2 mission n. duty or purpose for which Muhammad was sent. 
3 the faithful n. those who believe in Allah and the established religion. 
4 procession n. continuous onward movement of people. 
5 realize v. fulfil. 
6 conversion n. a change in which a person accepts completely a new religion, political belief, etc. 
7 contemplate v. think deeply. 
8 contemplative adj. spending much time in thinking deeply. 
9 mood n. state of the feeling at a particular time. 
10 shower v. pour unpleasant words and bad names upon. 
11 contemptuous adj. showing a feeling of no respect or admiration. 
12 insulting adj. offending by speech or action. 
13 slave-girl n. girl owned by somebody; girl without personal freedom.
14 chase n. following rapidly in order to catch 
15 indignation n feeling of anger.
16 pride n high opinion of oneself.
17 offend v. do wrong; cause displeasure to. 
18 forious adj. very angry.
19 disgracefully adv. shamefully.
20 profess v. announce a certain belief.
21 deliberately adv. aimingly; purposely; intentionally.
22 pledge v. make a solemn promise or agreement. 
23 testify v. witness; express one's belief (that) 
24 adherent adj. loyally connected. 
25 faith n. strong belief.
26 mature adj. fully grown and developed.
27 physically adj. bodily.
28 muscle n. piece of elastic material in the body which can tighten to produce movement 
29 temperamentally adv. from the point of view of being caused by one's nature.
30 aggressor n. a person or country that begins fighting or war without just cause.
31 security n. state of being safe or protected against danger. 
32 emigration n. act or quality of leaving one's country to live in another.
33 sought (p.&p.p. of seek) v. aimed at; wished to have.
34 Negus n. the king of Abyssinia (Ethiopia). 
35 undergo v. suffer. 
36 compatriot n. citizen of the same country.
37 resentment n. feeling of anger or bitterness at (ex. bad treatment)
38 intention n. purpose. 
39 relieve v. free from pain, trouble, etc. 
40 burden n. heavy load; heavy responsibility. 
41 restore v. get back; bring back; gain back. 
42 reverence n. great respect and admiration mixed with love.
43 criticize v. find fault with (someone or something) and judge (him or it) severely. 
44 Abuse v . say unkind, cruel or rude things to someone.
45 solve v. find an answer to a difficulty or a problem.
46 clan n. group of families, all originally descended from one family. 
47 hint v. give small or indirect suggestion.
48 overhear v. hear what others say without their knowledge.
49 murmur n. soft low sound.
50 missed v. mistaken. 
51 closet n. small private room for thought, prayer, etc. 
52 swore (p. of swear) promised formally or by an oath. 
53 abandon v. desert; leave completely and forever. 
54 proclaimed adj. made known publicly. 
55 bleed v. lose blood. 
56 fearlessly adj. without fear. 
57 soften v. cause to become soft, gentle, or less severe. 
58 cleanse v. make clean and pure. 
59 regret n. expression of sorrow about. 
\60 majesty n. greatness. 
61 generous adj. showing readiness to give money, help, kindness, etc. 
62 plea n. eager or serious request. 
63 head v. cause to move in a certain direction. 
64 scared adj being in a state of fear. 
65 pace v. take steps. 
66 henceforth adv. from now onwards. 
67 sheath n. close-fitting case for a sword blade. 
68 garb n. garment or cloak. 
69 refrain v. hold oneself back; avoid. 
70 triumph n. victory. 
71 cause n. principle strongly defended or supported. 
72 unparalleled adj. that connot be matched.
73 calibre n. quality of someone or something.
74 heroism n. quality of being a hero remembered and admired for his acts of courage under difficult conditions.
75 unpredicted adj. that connot be foreseen or expected.
76 destiny n. fate; that which must or has to happen.
77 prematurely adj. at too early a time.
78 cutoff v. killed; becoming a martyr.
79 vigorous adj. strong, healthy and active.
80 stature n. person's natural height.
81 ruddy adj. pink and healthy looking.
82 awe n. feeling of respect mixed with fear and wonder.
83 era n. period of time in history.
84 prevail v. gain control or victory.
85 conceal v. hide.
86 defiant adj. showing no fear or respect.
87 assemble v. gather.
88 rites n. forms of behaviour with a fixed pattern, (usu. for a religious purpose).
89 tragedy n. terrible, unhappy or unfortunate event.
90 significantly adv. while being of noticeable importance or effect.
91 dread n. great fear.
92 earnestly adj. seriously.
93 headed by adj. led by.
94 headed v. caused to move in a certain direction.
95 circumambulation n. walk round Al-Ka'abah seven times.
96 loyalties n. qualities of being true and faithful to one's group.
97 outskirts n. suburbs.
98 injury n. pain or harm done.
99 embracing n. adopting: believing in.
100 conquest n. land gained in war.

After The Grand Event Years Of Conquest

1 struggle v. make violent movements while fighting.
2 bitterly adv. severely.
3 terribly adv. very badly and severely.
4 hardships n. difficulties.
5 adversities n. great troubles and bad fortunes.
6 atrocities n. great evils, esp. cruelties.
7 blockheaded adj. foolish and brainless.
8 attempt n. effort made to do something.
9 prestige n. influence or/and reputation derived from past achievements.
10 conflict n. Meeting of opposing ideas, beliefs or circumstances.
11 forbear v. endure.
12 clash n. light; battle.
13 display v. show.
14 discernibly adv. noticeably.
15 part and parcel most important part that cannot be separated from the whole.
16 overall adj. including everything.
17 confined to adj. enclosed within limits.
18 exposed to adj. uncovered; left without protection.
19 extend v. be enlarged or prolonged.
20 comprise v. include.
21 propagation n. the act of spreading or reaching and influencing a great number of people.
22 considerable adj. great and important.
23 role n. part.
24 persistent adj. continuing in a habit or course of action.
25 longing adj. showing a strong wish.
26 patronage n. care and support given by a person to another or others.
27 declare v. make known publicly.
28 conversion n. a change whereby a person accepts completely a new religion, political belief, etc.
29 community n. group of people living together and being united by shared interests, religion, nationality, etc.
30 interdiction n. prohibition.
31 wrathful adj in a state of great anger.
32 spiteful adj. hateful.
33 boycott v. refuse to help or do business with.
34 compliant v. readily acting in accordance with a rule, order, etc.
35 endure v. forbear.
36 anguish n. very great pain and suffering (esp. of the mind).
37 luxuriously adv. in a state of providing the greatest comfort.
38 sacrifice v. give up or lose (esp. for some purpose or belief).
39 cry hot tears. cry and weep very severely.
40 void of adj. lacking.
41 cry his heart out cry and weep.
42 threatening adj. warning.
43 suppress v. prevent from appearing.
44 caliphate n. state of being a caliph.
45 sympathetic adj. having sympathy or the ability to share feelings with others.
46 lenient adj. merciful in judgement; gentle.
47 undertake v. start on (work); bear the responsibility for.
48 stimulate v. excite.
49 abominable adj. hateful; causing great dislike.
50 emigrate v. to leave one's city or country and go to live in another.
51 under the guise of under cover of.
52 misshapened adj. badly or wrongly shaped or formed.
53 orphanize v. turn (somebody) to an orphan.
54 widow n. a wife whose husband has died.
55 brilliance n. brightness and intelligence.

Omar's Marked Individuality


individuality n. character and qualities which make someone different from all others.
2 characteristics n. certain qualities that distinguish a person.
3 transparent adj. clear and easily understood.
4 emanate v. come forth.
5 interpretation n. true explanation of something.
6 profound adj. deep.
7 affection n. love.
8 gratitude n. true thankfulness.
9 disciple n. follower of a great teacher (esp. religious).
10 extricate v. set (someone) free from (something).
11 jeopardies n. dangers.
12 outspoken adj. frank.
13 perpetual adj. going on for ever; ever incessant.
14 awe n. feeling of respect mixed with fear and wonder.
15 grace n. state of the soul when freed from evil.
16 verse (of the Qur'an) n. each of the short divisions of chapter in the Qur'an.
17 unintentionally adv. aimlessly; without a purpose.
18 confirm v. support.
19 indulge v. allow oneself to take pleasure.
20 glorification n. act of giving honourable fame to (something).
21 immortalize v. make somebody or something seem alive for ever after death.
22 erection n. building; establishing.
23 standing n. place to stand on.
24 emulate v. compete; try to do better than others.
25 indefinite adj. not clear; not fixed.
26 prohibition n. prevention.
27 indisputable adj that cannot be a subject of difference during a discussion.
28 evidence n. proof.
29 solicitous adj. taking eager, kind or helpful care.
30 considerate adj. thoughtful of the rights or feelings of others.
31 attendance n. act of being present.
32 diverse adj. different.
33 attitudes n. trends; points of view.
34 righteous adj following the right path in word and deed.
35 libertine adj. profane; taking liberty to behave immorally.
36 veiled adj. wearing a covering of thin cloth for all or part of the head or face.
37 summon v . call.
38 naked adj. uncovered.
39 hasten v. go or move quickly.
40 prostrate v. lie down with the face and front touching the ground as during the prayers.
41 submission n. act of yielding or agreeing to obey.
42 hypecrites n. double-faced people.
43 despised v. scorned.
44 stripped of adj . having (something) removed of (somebody).
45 funeral n. ceremony of burying a dead person.
46 notwithstanding adv. although something is true, yet, etc.
47 captives n . prisoners of war.
48 beheaded adj . having his head cutoff.
49 irrespective adj. in spite of.
50 ransom n. sum of money paid to free a prisoner of war.
51 lenience n. quality of being merciful in judgement.
52 condemnation n. expressing strong disapproval of.
53 prediction n. foretelling; prophesying.
54 patronize v. take somebody in one's charge.
55 stab v. hit with a dagger or any sharp weapon.
56 standstill n. a condition of no movement; stop.
57 fusion n. uniting or mixing.
58 rally n. the coming or bringing together; union.

The Commander of the Faithful


corroborate v. support; strengthen.
2 pass away v. die; be deceased
3 recommend v. speak in favour of.
4 successor n. follower; one who follows another in rule
5 architectural adj. dealing with the art of designing buildings
6 prosperous adj. Successful; very favourable .
7 nominate v. choose.
8 address n. speech.
9 constitution n. body of laws and principles according to which a country is govemed.
10 cordial adj hearty.
11 disposal n. power or right to use freely.
12 unsheathed adj. out of its sheath
13 graciousness n. politeness, kindness and pleasantness
14 aware adj. conscious; fully recognizing what is going around
15 oppressive adj. cruel; unjust.
16 aggressive adj. always ready to quarrel or attack.
17 yield v. give up; submit.
18 virtuous adj. possessing, showing or practising goodness and nobleness
19 levy v. demand and collect.
20 bestow v. give.
21 due adj. proper; suitable; enough
22 pledge v. make a solemn promise or agreement
23 incumbent adj. enjoined.
24 grants n. money given by the state to support individuals.
25 God will in. according to the will of Allah.
26 posts n. small distant forts or camps at which a body of soldiers is kept.
27 beneficence n. act of doing good.
28 abomination n. a very hateful or nasty thing.
29 charge with v. command; give as a responsibility.
30 derive v. obtain from; come from.
31 epoch n. a certain period of time.
32 dazzle v. cause wonder to.
33 assume v. suppose.
34 myth n. a false idea.
35 baffling adj. making an effective action impossible by confusing.
36 sound adj. based on truth and good judgment; not wrong.
37 archangel n. chief angel; Gabriel.
38 paralyze v. silence and stop the movement of.
39 inimical adj. hostile.
40 castigation n. punishment; torturing.
41 strifen n. struggle.
42 integral adj. necessary to complete.
43 congregation group of people gathered together to perform the same act.
44 weightier adj. heavier.
45 apostasy n. desertion of one's religious faith.
46 apostates n. those who desert their religious faith.
47 riot n. violent actions and noisy behaviour by a number of people together in a public place.
48 coercive adj. making people do something unwillingly by using force.
49 abstain v. keep oneself from doing something; refrain.
50 enslaved adj. made a bondman.
51 condemn v. express strong disapproval of.
52 shrewdness n. act of being clever in judgement.
53 status n. one's position in relation to others.
54 elect v. select.
55 conquests n. lands gained in war.
56 succession n. act of following one after the other.
57 ancestors n. predecessors.
58 derive v. obtain from; come from.
59 component adj. being any of the parts that make up a whole.
60 revere v. give great respect and admiration.
61 obligations n. duties.
62 execution n. act of carrying out, or performing completely (ex. on order)
63 summit n. top.
64 indiscriminately without distinction
65 rueful adj showing that one is sorry about (something one has done).
66 chasten v. make (a person or behaviour) pure.
67 legal punishment bounds enjoined in Islam; punishment according to Islamic law.
68 scourge v. beat with a whip.
69 patio n. an inner roofless courtyard.
70 irritated adj. made angry; stimulated to anger.
71 reprimandingly adv. scoldingly.
72 justification n. good reason for doing something.
73 fatigued adj. very tired and exhausted.
74 administered v. put into operation.
75 deteriorate v. cause to become worse.
76 throes n. pains of death.
77 observe v. act in accordance with.
78 bounds n. limitation; restriction.
79 outdistance v. go further or faster than.
80 most notable parents parents of the highest degree of graciousness.
81 grievance n. complaint to the ruler explaining how one has been treated cruelly or unjusfly.
82 everlasting adj remaining for ever.
83 utterance n. spoken phrase or phrases
84 vicegerents n. vice-rulers of the different districts.
85 walis n. vice-rulers of the different districts.
86 deviate v. move away (from the straight path).
87 corruption n. act of being immoral, wicked, bad, dishonest, etc.
88 flog v. whip; hit with a whip.
89 retaliate v. take vengeance; exact retribution for
90 censors n. supervisors
91 constructive adj. serving a useful purpose.
92 emerge v. come forth; appear.
93 tire v. cause (somebody) to be tired.
94 imitate v. copy.
95 transitory adj. not permanent; lasting only a short time.
96 explore v. wander about to discover.
97 chanting adj. singing.
98 illicit adj haram; something illegal or strictly forbidden.
99 equitable adj. fair and just.
100 adulterate v. mix (ex. milk) with (ex. water).
101 immoral adj. not considered good or right.
102 cognizant adj knowing everything.
103 orthodox adj. holding accepted beliefs and following the right path.
104 invoke v. call out to (esp. God) for help.
105 sack n. large bag, usually of strong cloth, used for storing or moving flour, coal, grain, etc.
106 response n. answer; reply.
107 lodge v. deposit with an official (complaint, information, etc.)
108 unimpaired adj not weakened; not spoiled.
109 flawless adj. perfect; with no damage.
110 discharge v. dismiss (a person) from a job.
111 verdict n. official decision (or judgement) made by a judge.
112 jurisdiction n. power held by an official body, esp. a court of law.
113 award v. grant; assign.
114 wrapped adj. being dressed in.
115 pulpit n. small raised enclosure of wood from which a speaker addresses his audience
116 tailored adj made by a tailor.
117 favour v. give unfairly generous treatment to.
118 relinquish v. give up; desert.
119 dowry n. property that a husband gives his wife in marriage.
120 exaggerate v. make something larger than it should be.
121 deliberate v. consider carefully.
122 conformity n. act of being in accordance with.
123 bird of prey bird that kills other birds and small animals for food.
124 subsistence n. state of living with little money or food.
125 allocate v. divide; give as a share.
126 tolerant adj. able to endure and tolerate.
127 throes n. see no.76 (this chapter).
128 distract v. take a person's mind off something.
129 reject v. refuse to accept.
130 guarantee v. give a promise of fulfilling something.
131 burial n. ceremony of putting a dead body into a grave.
132 famine n. very serious lack of food.
133 tackle v. deal with.
134 dispel v. drive away by scattering.
135 entrust give (someone) the charge of (something) with complete trust.
136 custody n. right of caring for (someone or something).
137 mule n. animal which is the young of a donkey and a horse.
138 stumble v. catch the foot on the ground while moving, and to fall.
139 architect n. a person who makes an important plan of any kind.
140 exert v. use (strength, skill, etc.).
141 inevitably adv. in a state in which something cannot be prevented from happening.
142 mutual adj. equally shared by each of two individuals or two groups.
143 innumerable adj. too large in number to be counted.
144 reign n. period of being a king or a queen.
145 drought n. a long period of dry weather, when there is not enough water.
146 ash-grey adj. having the grey colour of ashes.
147 manifest v. show plainly.
148 incessant adj. never stopping.
149 implement v. carry out or put into practice.
150 starvation n. death of hunger as a result of famine.
151 multitudinous adj. very large in number.
152 extinguished adj. dying out; coming to an end.
153 subordinates n. persons of lower rank, taking orders from their superiors.
154 aggravate v. make more serious or dangerous; make worse.
155 affluence n. state of abounding (esp. in riches).
156 succour n. help given in difficulty.
157 disperse v. scatter in different directions
158 slaughter v. kill (animals) for food
159 suffice v. be enough (esp. of food) to satisfy.
160 deprive v. take away from; prevent from using.
161 enjoin v. direct or impose by authoritative order.
162 harsh adj. cruel; stiff; unkind.
163 emaciation n. act of losing weight. or becoming very thin.
164 relish v. enjoy: be pleased with.
165 disastrous adj. being full of misfortunes.
166 repent v. be sorry for wrong-doing..
167 thenceforth adv. from then onwards.
168 suspend v. put off or stop for a period of time.
169 poor-due n. Zakat; legal alms which is the poor's right.
170 alms n. Zakat; legal tax which is the poor's right.
171 badly-off adj. poor; needy.

`Omar's Martyrdom

1 martyrdom n. state of dying for a belief (esp. the cause of Allah).
2 venomous adj that kills as poison does.
3 rancours n. feeling of bitter unforgiving hatred.
4 servility n. state of behaving like slaves, allowing complete control by others.
5 spurious adj. false; like something else, but falsely so.
6 plot v. plan together secretly against someone or something.
7 mill n. machine for crushing corn or grain into flour.
8 grind v. crush into small pieces or a powder.
9 assert v. state or declare forcefully.
10 chit-chat n. informal conversation.
11 abominable adj. hateful; causing great dislike.
12 magian n. citizen of ancient Persia; worshipper of fire.
13 convicted v. accused; found guilty.
14 suspicion n. doubt.
15 serpent n. large snake.
16 pit n. natural hole in the ground.
17 effusion n. strong outward flow of liquid (ex. blood).
18 hideous adj. having a terrible effect on the senses.
19 ablution n. the washing of parts of the body (hands, face, arms, head, legs) before perfoming prayers.
20 plea n. eager or serious request.
21 prostrate v. lie down with the face and front touching the ground as during the prayers.
22 stroke v. pass the hand over (ex. the head) gently.
23 devour v. eat up quickly and hungrily.
24 liver n. large organ in the body which produces bile and cleanses the blood.
25 benignly adv in a state of a kind or gentle nature.




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Addition Date:Added on Nov,17,04 :: Last modified Nov,17,04
Title:Al-Farouq Omar Ibnul-Khattab  
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