His name shines on the horizon of Madinah. He was the first who offered full hospitality to Holy Prophet (peace and mercy of Allah be upon him) when he arrived in Madinah. Later he proved that he was not only an extraordinary host and a warrior, but also Katib-e-Wahi, a Hafiz Qur’an and a Faqih whose fatwas were trusted. Abu Ayub Ansari also served as imam of the Prophet’s Mosque during the Caliphate of Uthman bin Affan. He took part in all the famous battles including Badr, Ohud, Khandaq, Hunain, Khayber and Tabuk.
Abu Ayub Ansari belonged to Bani Najjar tribe. It was not a new relationship for the Holy Prophet (pbuh). His great-grandfather Hashem married a lady named Salma from Banu Najjar of Madinah, later he went to Shaam for trading and died at Ghazza and was buried there. Salma gave birth to a boy. Later when Thabet bin Manzar (father of Hassan bin Thabet) visited Makkah he informed Muttaleb about his brother Hashim’s marriage in Madinah and the birth of a boy. Muttaleb visited Madinah and brought his nephew. This boy was named Abdul Muttaleb, later to become the grandfather of the Prophet (peace be upon him).
When the Prophet (peace be upon him) migrated to Madinah the whole city erupted in jubilation with young boys and girls welcoming the Prophet (peace be upon him) with noble songs.
The residents stood on the way asking the Prophet to stay with them. The Prophet said, “I will stay at the place where my camel sits.” The camel moved for a while and sat at an open place. He asked whose house is nearby. Abu Ayub Ansari burst with joy and said: “This is my house, this is my house, I am here to serve you.” Asad bin Zararah took the camel to his house. The Prophet (peace be upon him) stayed at Abu Ayub’s house for about seven months until the Prophet’s Mosque was built on the open space where his camel had stopped. Thus Abu Ayub became the Prophet’s closest neighbor who always served him during his life. This house was later known as “Maktaba Aarif Hikmat Bey” about 10 meters from the present Bab Baqie of the Prophet’s Mosque.
It is reported that once Abu Bakr and Omar came out of their houses because of acute hunger. The Prophet (peace be upon him) also joined them and they went together to the house of Abu Ayub. He was filled with joy to see the honorable guests. He rushed to the garden and brought dates. He later slaughtered a goat and offered it to them. They ate it and thanked Almighty Allah for His great bounties. In the meantime Prophet (peace be upon him) took a piece of meat, placed it in a loaf and said, “Abu Ayub, take this to Fatimah, she has not tasted the like of this for days.”
Abu Ayub devoted his life and property for the sake of Islam and participated in most of the campaigns during and after the life of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him). He was born in around 590 AD. He had three sons — Khalid, Ayub and Mohammed and a daughter named Umrah. Their descendants are found in Egypt, India, Pakistan and Turkey.
During the rule of Ameer Muawiya when a call was made for jihad against Constantinople, he raised his sword and participated in it. Though he was one of the favorites of the Holy Prophet, he preferred to leave Madinah and fight in distant lands for the sake of Islam. During this campaign he fell sick and instead of returning to Madinah he said before his death: “Convey my salaams to the Muslim army and tell them: ‘Abu Ayub urges you to penetrate deep into the enemy territory as far as you can so that you carry me (my dead body) with you and that you bury me under your feet at the walls of Constantinople.’”
Then he breathed his last. The Muslim army fulfilled the desire of the companion of the Messenger of God. They pushed back the enemy’s forces in attack after attack until they reached the walls of Constantinople. There they buried him.
Later, Ottoman Caliphs built nice tomb and a mosque. The locality is now called Ayub Sultan on the European part of Istanbul. Besides the grave of Abu Ayub Ansari there are 28 more companions buried in Turkey who laid their lives for the sake of Islam on this land. Ayub Sultan has become a sacred locality and many Ottoman caliphs were crowned at this place and later many nobles were buried near him.
This is a Hadith narrated by Abu Ayub Ansari (May Almighty Allah give him high ranks in Paradise), Allah’s Messenger said, “It is not lawful for a man to desert his Muslim brother for more than three nights. (It is unlawful for them that) when they meet, one of them turns his face away from the other, and the other turns his face from the former, and the better of the two will be the one who greets the other first.”
– by ABU TARIQ HIJAZI
RAMADAN is a month of discipline, self-control, patience, and good behavior. In Ramadan, Muslims are expected to gain the fruits of fasting, namely, piety and consciousness of Allah. In this context, Allah, Most High, says in the Glorious Qur’an : “O you who believe! Observing As-Saum (the fasting) is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become Al-Muttaqun (the pious).” (Al-Baqarah 2:183)
Also, He says: “And He it is Who has put the night and the day in succession, for such who desires to remember or desires to show his gratitude.” (Al-Furqan 25:62)
Life and death and the succession of nights and days have a purpose and that is to test us and to give us an opportunity to express our thanks and gratitude to our Creator and Sustainer. The month of Ramadan comes and goes. We must examine ourselves now and see what we have learned and achieved during this month. The test of success of this month lies in the effects it has left upon us as follows:
We learn in this month how to discipline ourselves for the sake of Allah. We follow a strict schedule of eating and drinking. We are constantly aware that even in our such mundane activities as eating and drinking, we must follow divine injunctions. We change our habits in our daily routines because we learn that we are not the servants and slaves to our habits, but always the servants of Allah. Then after Ramadan, we have to keep this spirit of discipline in other modes of our life and must continue with our submission to the commands of Allah.
Renewal of devotional life
Ramadan renews our enthusiasm for worship and devotion to Allah. In this month we are more careful of our daily prayers and have special prayers at night. There is no religion without prayer and Muslims learn in this month how to strengthen and deepen their religious life.
Renewal of contact with the Qur’an
Ramadan and the Qur’an are linked together from the beginning. It was in this month that this divine message was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). We are told that the Prophet (peace be upon him) was fasting when he received the first revelation. Fasting prepares the believers’ hearts to learn the Word of Allah. It is the most suitable condition for our spiritual and mental communication with the Qur’an. The Muslim Ummah pays more attention to the Qur’an in this month. This renewed contact with the Qur’an must help us in following its message.
Renewal of identity with the Ummah
Ramadan is not an individual experience only, but it is an experience in community. The whole Muslim Ummah fasts together in one and the same month. We identify with one another in our obedience to Allah. This gives us a new sense of togetherness and association. Ramadan teaches us that the Muslim Ummah is the community of piety and devotion to Allah and its members derive their strength from each other in deeds of piety and virtue. The bonds that are based on piety and virtue are the strongest and these bonds prove good for mankind. The strength of the Muslim community lies in its commitment to the values of goodness, morality and piety. Ramadan leaves an imprint of all these values upon the Muslim Ummah.
A fresh sense of care and sympathy
Fasting in the month of Ramadan helps us to understand the suffering and the pains of the poor and needy. By our voluntary hunger and thirst we realize what it means to be deprived of basic necessities of life. Ramadan is called the month of charity and sympathy. We learn how to be more kind and generous in this month. Many Muslims also pay their Zakah in the month of Ramadan.
Jihad or struggle
Fasting in Ramadan and Jihad both of them were prescribed in the same year, that is, the second year of Hijra in Madina. Fasting prepares for hardships and sacrifices. These are two important things without which Jihad is not possible. Muslims learn in Ramadan how to struggle against the forces of evil in their own selves, in the society around them, and in the world at large.
To summarize all the moral and spiritual gifts of Ramadan, we can say that Ramadan gives us the great gift of Taqwa (piety). Taqwa is the sum total of Islamic life. It is the highest of all virtues in the Islamic scheme of things. It means, God-consciousness, piety, fear and awe of Allah and it signifies submission to Allah and total commitment to all that is good and rejection of all that is evil and bad.
Talha Bin Ubaidullah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported about two men who came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and accepted Islam at the same time.
One of them would part take in Jihad more than the other. He was martyred in one of the battles he fought. The other man lived for another year, and then he too passed away.
Talha said, “I saw in my dream that I was at the door of Paradise when behold, I was with both of them (the two men). Someone came out of Paradise and allowed the man who passed away later to enter first.
Then he came out again and allowed the martyred one to enter. Then he returned and said to me, ‘Go back, for your time has not come yet.’ “
Talha woke up and began to inform others about this and they were all surprised. When they informed the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) about it, he said, “What are you surprised about?” They said, “O Messenger of Allah! Out of them both, this one strove harder (in Jihad) then he was martyred, but the other one was entered into Paradise before him.”
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “Did he not remain behind him for one year?” They said, “Yes (he did).”
He said, “Did he not reach Ramadan, fast and pray with such and such number of prostrations in the year?” They said, “Yes.”
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “So the difference between them is greater than what is between the heavens and the earth.” (Ibn Majah, 2/345-346, authenticated by Al-Albani)