Allah Almighty states in the Holy Quran:

وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّکُمْ بِشَیۡءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوۡفِ وَالْجُوۡعِ وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الۡاَمۡوٰلِ وَالۡاَنۡفُسِ وَالثَّمَرٰتِ ؕ وَبَشِّرِ الصّٰبِرِیۡنَ﴿۱۵۵﴾ۙ

  And We shall definitely put you to test with something of fear and hunger and with some loss of wealth and lives and fruits; and give glad tidings to the patient.

 (Al-Baqarah 2, Verse 155)

Hadeeth:

عَنْ أَنَسِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ قَالَ كَانَ اِبْنٌ لِأَبِي طَلْحَةَ يَشْتَكِيْ، فَخَرَجَ أَبُوْ طَلْحَةَ، فَقُبِضَ الصَّبِيُّ فَلَمَّا رَجَعَ أَبُوْ طَلْحَةَ قَالَ مَا فَعَلَ ابْنِي قَالَتْ أُمُّ سُلَيْمٍ هُوَ أَسْكَنُ مَا كَانَ‏.‏ فَقَرَّبَتْ إِلَيْهِ الْعَشَاءَ فَتَعَشَّى، ثُمَّ أَصَابَ مِنْهَا، فَلَمَّا فَرَغَ قَالَتْ وَارِ الصَّبِيَّ‏.‏ فَلَمَّا أَصْبَحَ أَبُو طَلْحَةَ أَتَى رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَأَخْبَرَهُ فَقَالَ ‏‏ أَعْرَسْتُمُ اللَّيْلَةَ ‏‏‏.‏ قَالَ نَعَمْ‏.‏ قَالَ ‏‏ اَللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ لَهُمَا ‏‏‏.‏ فَوَلَدَتْ غُلاَمًا قَالَ لِي أَبُو طَلْحَةَ احْفَظْهُ حَتَّى تَأْتِيَ بِهِ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَأَتَى بِهِ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم وَأَرْسَلَتْ مَعَهُ بِتَمَرَاتٍ، فَأَخَذَهُ النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَقَالَ ‏‏ أَمَعَهُ شَىْءٌ ‏‏‏.‏ قَالُوا نَعَمْ تَمَرَاتٌ‏.‏ فَأَخَذَهَا النَّبِيُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَمَضَغَهَا، ثُمَّ أَخَذَ مِنْ فِيهِ فَجَعَلَهَا فِي فِي الصَّبِيِّ، وَحَنَّكَهُ بِهِ، وَسَمَّاهُ عَبْدَ اللَّهِ‏.‏

وَفِيْ رِوَايَةٍ لِّلْبُخَارِيِّ: قَالَ ابنُ عُيَيْنَةَ: فَقَالَ رَجُلٌ مِنَ الأَنْصَارِ: فَرَأيْتُ تِسْعَةَ أوْلَادٍ كُلُّهُمْ قَدْ قَرَؤُوْا القُرْآنَ، يَعْنِي: مِنْ أوْلَادِ عَبدِ اللهِ الْمَوْلُوْدِ.

وَفي رواية لمسلمٍ: مَاتَ اِبْنٌ لِأبِيْ طَلْحَةَ مِنْ أُمِّ سُلَيْمٍ، فَقَالَتْ لِأَهْلِهَا: لاَ تُحَدِّثُوْا أَبَا طَلْحَةَ بِاِبْنِهِ حَتَّى أَكُوْنَ أَنَا أُحَدِّثُهُ، فَجَاءَ فَقَرَّبَتْ إِلَيْهِ عَشَاءً فَأَكَلَ وَشَرِبَ، ثُمَّ تَصَنَّعَتْ لَهُ أَحْسَنَ مَا كَانَتْ تَصَنَّعُ قَبْلَ ذٰلِكَ، فَوَقَعَ بِهَا. فَلَمَّا أَنْ رَأَتْ أَنَّهُ قَدْ شَبِعَ وأَصَابَ مِنْهَا، قَالَتْ: يَا أَبَا طَلْحَةَ، أَرَأَيْتَ لَوْ أنَّ قَوْمًا أعارُوْا عَارِيَتَهُمْ أَهْلَ بَيتٍ فَطَلَبُوْا عَارِيَتَهُمْ، أَلَهُمْ أنْ يَمْنَعُوهُمْ قَالَ: لا، فَقَالَتْ: فَاحْتَسِبْ اِبْنَكَ، قَالَ: فَغَضِبَ، ثُمَّ قَالَ: تَرَكْتِنِيْ حَتَّى إِذَا تَلطَّخْتُ، ثُمَّ أخْبَرَتْنِيْ بِاِبْنِي! فَانْطَلَقَ حَتَّى أَتَى رَسُوْلَ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم – فَأخْبَرَهُ بِمَا كَانَ فَقَالَ رَسُوْلُ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم: «بَارَكَ اللهُ فِيْ لَيْلَتِكُمَا»، قَالَ: فَحَمَلَتْ. قَالَ: وَكانَ رَسُوْلُ اللهُ – صلى الله عليه وسلم – فِيْ سَفَرٍ وَهيَ مَعَهُ، وَكَانَ رَسُوْلُ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم – إِذَا أَتَى الْمَدِيْنَةَ مِنْ سَفَرٍ لاَ يَطْرُقُهَا طُرُوْقًا فَدَنَوْا مِنَ الْمَدِيْنَةِ، فَضَرَبَهَا الْمَخَاضُ، فَاحْتَبَسَ عَلَيْهَا أَبُوْ طَلْحَةَ، وَانْطَلَقَ رَسُوْلُ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم. قَالَ: يَقُوْلَ أَبُوْ طَلْحَةَ: إنَّكَ لَتَعْلَمُ يَا رَبِّ أَنَّهُ يُعْجِبُنِي أَنْ أخْرُجَ مَعَ رَسُوْلِ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم – إِذَا خَرَجَ وَأَدْخُلَ مَعَهُ إِذَا دَخَلَ وَقَدِ احْتَبَسْتُ بِمَا تَرَى، تَقُولُ أُمُّ سُلَيْمٍ: يَا أَبَا طَلْحَةَ، مَا أَجِدُ الَّذِي كُنْتُ أجِدُ، اِنْطَلِقْ، فَانْطَلَقْنَا وَضَرَبَهَا الْمَخَاضُ حِيْنَ قَدِمَا، فَوَلدَتْ غُلَامًا. فَقَالَتْ لِيْ أمِّي: يَا أنَسُ، لَا يُرْضِعْهُ أحَدٌ حَتَّى تَغْدُوْ بِهِ عَلَى رَسُوْلِ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم. فَلَمَّا أصْبَحَ  اِحْتَمَلْتُهُ فَانْطَلَقْتُ بِهِ إِلَى رَسُوْلِ اللهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم … وَذَكَرَ تَمَامَ الْحَدِيْثِ.

Sayyiduna Anas – may Allah be pleased with him – reported: One of the sons of Sayyiduna Abu Talha – may Allah be pleased with him – was ailing. Sayyiduna Abu Talha went out and the boy died in his absence. When he came back, he inquired, “How is the boy?”. Umm Sulaim, the mother of the boy, replied, “Better than before”. Then she placed his evening meal before him and he ate it; and thereafter slept with her. At last, she said to him: “Arrange for the burial of the boy”. In the morning, Abu Talhah went to the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – and informed him of the event. He enquired, “Did you sleep together last night?” Abu Talha replied in affirmation, upon which the Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – supplicated, “O Allah bless them.”  Thereafter, she gave birth to a boy. Abu Talha said to me: “Take the boy and carry him to the Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him”; and he sent some dates with him. The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – enquired, “Is there anything with him?” He said; “Yes, some dates”. The Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – took a date, chewed it and put it in the mouth of the baby and rubbed the chewed date around the baby’s gum and named him ‘Abdullah.

The narration in Bukhari adds: Ibn ‘Uyainah relates that a man from the Ansar told him that he had seen nine sons of this ‘Abdullah, every one of whom had committed the Noble Qur’an to memory.

The narration of Muslim says: The son of Abu Talha – may Allah be pleased with him, who was born of Umm Sulaim, died. She (Umm Sulaim) said to the members of the family: “Do not tell Abu Talha about his son until I mention it to him myself.” Abu Talha came (home) and she gave him supper. He ate and drank. She then beautified herself the best way she ever did and he slept with her. When she saw that he was satisfied after sexual intercourse with her, she said, “O Abu Talha! If some people borrow something from another family and then (the members of the family) ask for it in return, would they refuse to give it back to them.” He said, “No”. She said, “Then hope reward for your son”. Abu Talha got angry, and said; “You left me uninformed until I stained myself (with sexual intercourse) and then you told me about my son. “He went to Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – and informed him about the matter. Thereupon Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – said, “May Allah bless the night you spent together!” He (the narrator) said: She conceived. (One day).  The Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – was in the course of a journey and she was along with him. When the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – used to come back to Madinah Munawwarah from a journey, he would not enter it (during the night). When the people came near Madinah Munawwarah, she felt labour pains. He (Abu Talha) remained with her and the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – proceeded. Abu Talha said: “O my Lord, You know that I love to go along with the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – when he goes out and enter along with him when he enters, and I have been detained as You see.” Umm Sulaim then said: “O Abu Talha, I do not feel (so much pain) as I was feeling earlier, so we better proceed. So we proceeded and she felt the labour of delivery as they reached (Madinah Munawwarah). She gave birth to a male child. My mother said to me: “O Anas, none should suckle him until you go to the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – tomorrow morning.” The next morning I carried the baby with me to the Messenger of Allah – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him, and narrated the rest of the story.

(Bukhari, Muslim)

Commentary:

Umm Sulaim in Paradise:

The name of Umm Sulaim was Rumaisa – may Allah be pleased with her.

The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – stated:

When I was in Paradise in the night of Ascension (Me’raj), I saw Rumaisa, the wife of Abu Talha, there.

(Sahih Bukhari Hadeeth No. 3679)

The name of Abu Talha’s deceased son was Abu ‘Umair.  He was still a baby sucking milk.  There was a small bird who became friends with him and played with him.  When the Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – visited his house, he would say, “O father of ‘Umair, what is the bird up to?”

(Sahih Bukhari Hadeeth No. 6129)

This incident teaches us about the great qualities of Sayyidah Umme Sulaim Radi Allahu ‘Anha. It teaches us about her immense display of patience. At the same time, it also teaches us that when there is an incident during the time the husband is not at home, one should not reveal anything the moment he arrives. The reason is that the person who comes home tired, this type of sudden news can have a bad effect on him. In fact, it is also seen that sometimes listening to this sudden news of mishap and calamity can also cause the person to have a heart attack.

Muslims females should also bear in mind and learn a lesson from this incident. We notice that in the present age, when one’s husband, brother, son or father arrives home, the females of the present age have this habit of giving the person the complete report of what happened in the day. They do not even give the person a chance to relax or even eat!

There is no doubt that the behaviour of Sayyidah Umme Sulaim Radi Allahu ‘Anha must have certainly created respect in the heart of her husband. There is no doubt that when there is support from both sides of the marriage, then there is always a sense of admiration and love between people. At the same time, it also teaches us one of the methods of conveying bad and tragic news. In fact, it should be conveyed in a kind and gentle manner so that it does not send the person into a state of shock.

In fact, we should also learn the lesson that when we convey a message, we should display tact and wisdom and present something which would make the news which one is about to reveal as palatable as possible. This also proves the noble habit of protecting the husband from sudden news of tragedy and sadness and to display patience is such a difficult moment is also one of the ways of achieving Jannah.

Our advice to our Muslims sisters is to practise upon the Sunnah of Sayyidah Umme Sulaim Radi Allahu ‘Anha and they will see for themselves the immense benefit that one achieves in this world and the next, In Sha Allah. Aameen.

Lesson Derived from the Hadeeth:

Allama Badruddin ‘Ayni – may Allah be pleased with him – writes few lessons to be remembered from the Hadeeth:

  1. One should not display sorrow at difficult times as Sayyidah Umm Sulaim – may Allah be pleased with her – endured and was steadfast with Sabr.  She conquered her Nafs.
  2. Sayyidah Umm Sulaim – may Allah be pleased with her – has been praised in Hadeeth for her virtue of Sabr and her pleasure in the destiny of Allah.
  3. It is permissible for a wife to apply makeup and adorn herself for her husband.
  4. One who makes Sabr upon the loss of his beloved things for the pleasure of Allah, Allah Almighty blesses him or her with much better replacement, as in the case of Sayyiduna Abu Talha – may Allah be pleased with him.  When he lost his one child, his child was blessed with nine sons and all of them were well versed in Quran.
  5. Du’as of our beloved Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – were answered in the Court of Allah Almighty.

(‘Umdat al-Qari under Hadeeth No. 1301)

Keeping Good Names for Children:

The Holy Quran warns against calling or keeping bad names:

وَلَا تَلْمِزُوۡۤا اَنۡفُسَکُمْ وَلَا تَنَابَزُوۡا بِالْاَلْقٰبِ ؕ بِئْسَ الِاسْمُ الْفُسُوۡقُ بَعْدَ الْاِیۡمٰنِ

And do not taunt one another and nor keep one another bad names. What a bad name is, to be called a “disobedient” after being a Muslim.

(Al-Hujraat 49, Verse 11)

The beloved Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – states:

اَوَّلُ مَا یُنْحِلُ الرَّجُلُ وَلَدَہٗ اِسْمُہٗ فَلْیُحْسِنْ اِسْمَہٗ

The first gift a man could give his child is its name, so keep it a good one.

Hazrat Allamah Abdur Ra’oof Manaawi – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – comments on the Hadeeth as follows:

“The wisdom behind the command of keeping good names is that one’s actions should be as good as one’s name, for the names act as a body for one’s personality and represent one’s personality.  Allah’s ultimate wisdom demands and ordains that there should be a connection between one’s name and his actions.  The names have an impact on one’s personality and vice-versa.”

(Faid Al-Qadeer, Under the Hadeeth No. 3745)

Time of Name-keeping

Hazrat Sayyiduna ‘Amr Ibn Shu’aib – may Allah be pleased with him – narrated that the Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – commanded to keep the children’s name on the seventh day from the day of birth.

(Tirmidhi Hadeeth No. 2841)

It’s best to perform the Aqeeqah of the newborn on the seventh day and then the name should be kept on the very day, although it’s permissible to keep the name even before the Aqeeqah.

(Nuzhatul Qaari Vol. 5, p. 430)

‘Abdullah and ‘Abdur Rahman names are Dear to Allah:

The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – has stated:

The dearest amongst your names to Allah are ‘Abdullah and ‘Abdur Rahman.

(Sahih Muslim Hadeeth No. 2132)

Greatness of the Name Muhammad:

The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – has stated:

Whoever is blessed with a male child and he names him Muhammad for the sake of my love and to seek blessings through it, both he and his son will enter Paradise.

(Kanzul ‘Ummal Hadeeth No. 45215)

One whose Name is Ahmed or Muhammad will not enter hell:

The Holy Prophet – may Allah send peace and blessings upon him – has stated:

Two people will be standing before Allah Almighty on the Day of Judgment.  He will command to take them to Paradise.  They will ask, “O our Lord, which action of ours has enable us the residency in Paradise?  We never did anything to deserve Paradise.”  Allah Almighty will respond, “I have take an oath that whoever is name Ahmed or Muhammad, will not enter hell.”

(Al-Firdaus bi Mathoor al-Khitab Hadeeth No. 8515)

  • One should keep good names for their children
  • It’s better to keep the name on the 7th day
  • People will be called on the Day of Judgment by the names they had in the world
  • It’s the father’s responsibility to keep the name
  • The Shariah views must be taken into consideration when naming
  • One should have good intentions at the time of name-keeping
  • There are some names that are excellent, some are permissible and on the other hand some names are not appropriate and some are even forbidden
  • If one wishes to keep a child’s name that should start with ‘Abd then ‘Abdullah and ‘Abdur Rahmaan are the most excellent names
  • The name “Muhammad” is very lovely which is a means of many great blessings
  • The names – Muhamaad Bakhsh, Ghulaam Nabi and Abdun Nabi etc. – are permissible to keep.
  • One should not keep names that have a sense of boastfulness; like Prince, Princess etc.
  • It’s a means of blessings to keep names after the names of Awliya and the pious
  • It’s impermissible to keep bad names.

Lesson:

  • The character of a woman of great patience and gratitude is mentioned here.
  • In spite of the death of her child she neither wept and cried nor did she moan and mourn.
  • She was patient to the extent that when her husband came home she looked after all his needs like a loving and obedient wife does and then broke the sad news of the death of their child in a noble manner.
  • It is meritorious for a wife to beautify herself at home for her husband.
  • One who is patient in his trouble and is contented with the Will of Allah, certainly gets a reward for it from Him.
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