ZS31:AK25 The Tomb of Abu Darda ra

Visiting the tomb of Abu Darda radiyallah hu anhu (ra) was one of main agenda in Syria. After exploring the old city of Damascus, we took two taxis to Souk Harami and walked to the Citadel of Damascus along the Barada river – the main river of Dimasqh that flows from ‘Ayn Fijeh, 27 km northwest of Dimasqh.
After about 10 minutes walk, we arrived at the old outer gate of the Citadel. On the left hand side, immediately after the gate, within the wall, is a small Masjid where the tomb of Abu Darda ra located. The door or the passage way to the masjid is narrow but as you go in, the prayer hall is relatively big that could accommodate around 150 congregation at one time. The place is well maintained and its old kind caretaker, I presumed, was very kind and benign to us.
Standing in front of the tomb was just like a dream came true. I have heard and read a lot about his story and Hadiths narrated by him – one of the great Companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad saw (peace be upon him). After I took few shots, I recited al-Fatihah and tears shed out from my humble eyes.
Abu Darda ra was a trader in Madinah who converted from Judaism to Islam. And, here is the story of how he embraced Islam:
Early in the morning, Abu Darda ra awoke and went straight to his idol which he kept in the best part of his house. He greeted it and made obeisance to it. Then he anointed it with the best perfume from his large shop and put on it new raiment of beautiful silk which a merchant had brought to him the day before from Yemen.
When the sun was high in the sky he left his house for his shop. On that day the streets and alleys of Madinah were crowded with the followers of Prophet Muhammad saw (peace be upon him) returning from Badr. With them were several prisoners of war. Abu Darda ra surveyed the crowds and then went up to a Khazraji youth and asked about the fate of Abdullah ibn Rawahah.
"He was put through the most severe tests in the battle," "but he emerged safely..."
Abu Darda ra was clearly anxious about his close friend, Abdullah ibn Rawahah. Everyone in Madinah knew the bond of brotherhood which existed between the two men from the days of Jahiliyyah, before the coming of Islam to Madinah. When Islam came to the city, Ibn Rawahah embraced it but Abu Darda ra rejected it. This however did not rupture the relationship between the two. Abdullah kept on visiting Abu Darda ra and tried to make him! See the virtues, the benefits and the excellence of Islam. But with every passing day, while Abu Darda ra remained a mushrik, Abdullah felt more sad and concerned.
Abu Darda ra arrived at his shop and sat cross-legged on a high chair. He began trading-buying and selling and giving instructions to his assistants unaware of what was going on at his house. For at that very time, Abdullah ibn Rawahah had gone to the house determined on a course of action. There, he saw that the main gate was open. Umm ad-Darda was in the courtyard and he said to her:
"As-salaamu alayki - Peace be unto you, servant of Allah."
"Wa alayka-s salaam - And unto you be peace, O brother of Abu Darda."
"Where is Abu Darda?" he asked.
"He has gone to his shop. It won't be long before he returns."
"Would you allow me to come in?"
"Make yourself at home," she said and went about busying herself with her household chores and looking after her children.
Abdullah ibn Rawahah went to the room where Abu Darda ra kept his idol. He took out an adze which he had brought with him and began destroying the idol while saying:
"Isn't everything bad which is worshipped besides Allah?"
When the idol was completely smashed, he left the house. Abu Darda's wife entered the room shortly afterwards and was aghast at what she saw. She smote her cheeks in anguish and said:
"You have brought ruin to me, Ibn Rawahah."
When Abu Darda ra returned home, he saw his wife sitting at the door of the room where he kept his idol. She was weeping loudly and she looked absolutely terrified.
"What's wrong with you?" he asked.
"Your brother Abdullah ibn Rawahah visited us in your absence and did with your idols what you see." Abu Darda ra looked at the broken idol and was horrified. He was consumed with anger and determined to take revenge. Before long however his anger subsided and thoughts of avenging the idol disappeared. Instead he reflected on what had happened and said to himself:
"If there was any good in this idol, he would have defended himself against any injury." He then went straight to Abdullah and together they went to the Prophet Muhammad saw (peace be upon him). There he announced his acceptance of Islam. He was the last person in his district to become a Muslim.


Olavattur said...

mashaa allah..nice write up...thanks.i will go through the remaining writings too when free