Download PDF: [S] Suhaib Rumi was a Slave

Many years had passed in the history of Rome and many debates used to take place in the courts and the corridors of this empire. One day, one such debate was taking place. There was a priest in the main court who was discussing religious issues and many of the people in the court were completing refuting Nabi ‘Isa – peace be upon him.


Some of them were also insulting the great Prophet and some of them insisted that he was never a Prophet. Suddenly this priest stood up and shouted to everyone, “Very soon, in the Arabian Peninsula, a Prophet is going to appear and his time of appearance is very near. He will also substantiate the position of Nabi ‘Isa – peace be upon him – as the Prophet of Allah. He will also remove people from slavery and terror and take them towards the light.”


One of the people who were listening to this conversation was a person who also happened to be one of the slaves in this court. As this conversation and discussion increased, there also appeared a sense of peace on the face of this person. He was also highly intelligent even though he was a slave of this court. He was fully aware of the despicable behaviour of the Roman environments which was filled with vice and oppression. He was thinking about the day when he will be free from this slavery and tyranny.


He was one of those people that had been captured and then sold into slavery. At the same time, this did not make his forget his past and where he came from. He kept remembering his mother tongue which he was fast beginning to forget. He was over thirty years of age and he kept thinking about his younger days. He could never forget the day when his life changed and what his state was when he was younger. He had grown up in a wealthy environment and his father, Sanaan An Numairi, was the Governor of a certain region in Iraq. This position had been given to him by the Persian King. His mother was also from the famous Bani Tameem tribe.


His life changed when he was only fifteen years old. At that time, there were two super powers, the Roman Empire and the Persian Empire. They were always at war. Sometimes the Romans won and sometimes the Persians.


One day, while he was in his village, it was attacked by Romans soldiers. Hundreds of people were killed and captured and this young man was also taken as prisoner. He was then bought and sold on the many slave markets until he arrived in Rome. Although he knew the Arabic language, but due to the fact that he had lived so many years under Roman law and ways, he also had very little knowledge of the Arabic language. However, he never forgot the fact that he was indeed an Arab by birth.


The person under question is none other than the famous companion, namely Hadrat Sayyiduna Suhaib Rumi – may Allah be pleased with him. His title was “Abu Yahya” and some people are under the wrong impression that he was actually a Roman by birth, which is incorrect.


When Hadrat Sayyiduna Suhaib Rumi – may Allah be pleased with him – heard the words of the pastor, he decided to try and escape and reach the Muslims. Such is the behaviour of the early Muslims that they endured immense hardship just to be with the Muslims and to practise on Islam. After immense battle, he finally reached Mecca Shareef. His hair was also reddish in colour and compared to Arabic, he spoke better Latin.


This is the reason that people in Mecca Shareef kept his name “Suhaib Rumi”. When we look at the early Muslims, many of them endured such battles in their life but today, when we remember them, we used the words – may Allah be pleased with him – after their blessed names.


When we look at the Muslims of today, they do not have to endure such difficulties when they are spreading Islam or conveying the message of Islam. There are so many facilities which are available that they can sit in their homes and spread the message through various media.


But, the impact of the message spread by early Muslims changed the world while our message does not even change our neighbours. When early Muslims spoke, they spoke with their hearts and Imaan and when we speak, we speak through donation and bread as if we are doing a great favour to Allah Almighty.