#3: The Orphan Prophet ﷺ


بِسْمِ اللّٰهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْم
الحمد لله رب العالمين الذي منّ علی المؤمنين اذ بعث فيهم رسولا من انفسهم يتلوا عليهم ايته و يزكيهم و يعلمهم الكتاب و الحكمة و ان كانوا من قبلُ لفي ضلال مّبين

Our Beloved Master Muhammad ﷺ was born to two pure, beautiful parents who loved each other dearly. His father’s name was Abdullah, and his mother’s name was Aaminah رضی الله عنهما

The name Abdullah is a name most adored by Allah سبحانه و تعالی (Sahih Muslim) and it distinguished the pure father of the Prophet ﷺ amongst a society full of those who had become the ‘Abd (slave) of idols, false deities, corruption and desire, for he was the ‘Abd of Allah سبحانه و تعالی,  and the father of the ‘Abd and Rasool of Allah سبحانه و تعالی

Abdullah رضی الله عنه was one of the youngest and most beloved sons of Abdul Muttalib, the great leader of Makkah and the grandfather of the Prophet ﷺ

Shortly after marrying Sayyidah Aaminah رضی الله عنها, he embarked upon a trade caravan to earn and provide for his beloved wife, and his blessed child whom he eagerly anticipated. They travelled to the various lands of Gaza and Shaam, eventually returning back on route to Makkah Al-Mukarramah.

Whilst en route to Makkah, Sayyidinaa Abdullah رضی الله عنه began to feel ill and stopped over in the city which was then known as Yathrib, where he stayed in the care of his grandmother’s family, known as the Banu Najjar. He had great consideration for others and did not burden any of his companions in travel due to his illness, permitting them to proceed with their journey, so he would not hold them back and cause them any inconvenience on his part.

His companions returned to Makkah Al-Mukarramah and their arrival arose the heart of Sayyidah Aaminah رضی الله عنها who yearned to see her beloved husband after such a long period, especially with their blessed child she carried in her pure womb. Likewise, his father – Abdul Muttalib – was longing to see his beloved son, but both their hearts were left restless and anxious when they could not find him amongst the crowd and were eventually informed of his illness and condition in Yathrib.

Abdul-Muttalib immediately sent his son Haarith to Yathrib to attend to his beloved Abdullah and bring him home safely into the care of his dear father and beloved wife. After days had passed in unrest and worry, the news of Haarith returning to Makkah uplifted the heart of Sayyidah Aaminah رضی الله عنها who eagerly yearned to see the safe return of her beloved Husband. She rushed out carrying a trembling heart and an ennobled womb, only to find that Haarith had returned to Makkah alone. As Haarith entered into the city, he diffidently approached both Abdul-Muttalib and Sayyidah Aaminah رضی الله عنها to inform them of the painful news; that he was too late, and that when he had reached Yahtrib, Sayyidinaa Abdullah رضی الله عنه had already passed away in the house of Nagheebah Al-Ja’di after a month of Illness.

No sooner could he complete these painful words before sorrow overtook the hearts of all those around him, most importantly the heart of an elderly father, the heart of a widowed wife, and the heart of the unborn child in the womb of his mother, who would enter this world as an orphan Prophet ﷺ.

The books of Seerah conclude that the father of the Prophet ﷺ had passed away at approximately eighteen or twenty-five years of age whilst He ﷺ was only two months old in the womb of his mother. (Suhayli, Bayhaqi)

Thus, the father of the Prophet ﷺ had passed away even before he ﷺ was born, and he would enter into this world as an orphan, as a beacon of hope who would change the world for orphans forever. He ﷺ would honour and empower all of orphan kind, taking their title as his own title, for the Lord of the Worlds had crowned his beloved with the honorary name of Al-Yateem: “The Orphan Prophet ﷺ”.

The news of the passing of Sayyidinaa Abdullah رضی الله عنه circulated beyond the heavens and struck the hearts of the Angels themselves who rushed to their Lord and said:

إلهنا وسيدنا، بقى نبيك يتيما!

“Oh, Our Lord and Master, your Prophet has become an orphan!”

To which Allah سبحانه و تعالی declared:

أنا له حافظ ونصير

“I am his protector and supporter.”

(Al-Khasaais Al-Kubra)

Allah سبحانه و تعالی tells us in the Glorious Qur’aan:

أَلَمْ يَجِدْكَ يَتِيمًۭا فَـَٔاوَىٰ

“Did He not find you an orphan, and give you shelter?”
(Surah Ad-Duhaa 93:6)

This was a declaration of love from Allah سبحانه و تعالی to His beloved ﷺ, for even though he ﷺ may be entering into this world without the shade and shelter of a father, he ﷺ was never ever alone.

Whether it was the solitary cloud that followed and shaded him in an otherwise clear sky (Tirmidhi, Ibn Abi Shaybah), or the rain that poured forth upon the gaze of his beautiful face to the heavens (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Ibn Asakir), or the moon that came to play with him in the open night sky and console him when he was an innocent baby crying in the absence of his mother (Mawaahib Al-Ladunniyyah); these were all signs and indications that wherever he ﷺ was, Allah سبحانه و تعالی was always there to assist him and shelter him, and He سبحانه و تعالی would never ever abandon him…

وَالضُّحَىٰ ﴿١﴾ وَاللَّيْلِ إِذَا سَجَىٰ ﴿٢﴾ مَا وَدَّعَكَ رَبُّكَ وَمَا قَلَىٰ

“By the morning brightness. And [by] the night when it covers with darkness. Your Lord has not forsaken you, [O Muhammad], nor has He detested [you].”
(Surah Ad-Duhaa 93:1-3)

Love for Orphans

Our Prophet ﷺ was born an orphan and lived his life loving and protecting orphans. He ﷺ showed us their great status and instructed us to love and care for them.  He ﷺ was foretold and described with the salient feature of great care and concern for orphans.

ويبكي للْيَتِيم فِي حجر الأرملة

“And he ﷺ cries for the orphan in the care of the widow” (Abu Nu’aym)

The Prophet ﷺ taught us that caring for an orphan is such an exalted station that it results in his immediate companionship:

عَنْ سَهْل بْن سَعْدٍ رضی الله عنه عَنْ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ أَنَا وَكَافِلُ الْيَتِيمِ فِي الْجَنَّةِ هَكَذَا وَقَالَ بِإِصْبَعَيْهِ السَّبَّابَةِ وَالْوُسْطَى

Sahl ibn Sa’d reported: “The Prophet ﷺ said: “Myself and the caretaker of an orphan will be in Paradise like this,” and he held his two fingers together. “(Sahih Al-Bukhari)

May Allah سبحانه و تعالی give us the ability to love and care for orphans as is their right and in the manner Our Beloved Prophet ﷺ yearned for us to love and care for them, and likewise all those in need, Ameen!

Join us tomorrow as we continue with the next article: “In the Care of Halimah رضی الله عنها”


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