The Morning after the Mi'raj

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

When morning after the Mi’raj came, the Prophet (s.a.w.) remained alone and, knowing that people would belie him, sat despondently.  The enemy of Allah (s.w.t.), Abu Jahl, was passing by and he approached and sat down next to him, saying in the way of mockery, “Has anything happened?”

The Prophet (s.a.w.) replied, ‘Yes.”

Abu Jahl asked, ‘And what is that?”

The Prophet (s.a.w.) replied, “I was enraptured last night.”

Abu Jahl asked, “To where?”

The Prophet (s.a.w.) replied, “To the Hallowed House.”

Abu Jahl said, “Then you woke up here among us?”

He replied, “Yes.”

Abu Jahl decided not to belie the Prophet (s.a.w.) for fear the Prophet (s.a.w.) would deny having said this to him if he went and told the people of Makkah, so he asked, “What do you think if I called your people here?  Will you tell them what you just told me?”  The Prophet (s.a.w.) said yes.  Abu Jahl cried out, “O assembly of the Children of Ka`b ibn Lu'ay, come hither!”  People left their gatherings and came until they all sat next around the two of them.  Abu Jahl said, “Tell your people what you just told me.”

Allah’s Messenger (s.a.w.) said, “I was enraptured last night.”

They asked, “To where?”

The Prophet (s.a.w.) replied, “To the Hallowed House.”

They asked, “Then you woke up here among us?”

He replied, “Yes.” There was no one left except he clapped his hands, or held his head in amazement, or clamoured and considered it an enormity.

Muth’im ibn ‘Adi, who died a disbeliever, apostatised and said, “All of your affair before today was bearable, until what you said today.  I bear witness that you are a liar.  We strike the flanks of the she-camels for one month to reach the Hallowed House, then for another month to come back, and you claim that you went there in one night!  By al-Lat, by al-‘Uzza!  I do not believe you.”

Abu Bakr (r.a.) said, “O Muth`im, what an evil thing you said to the son of your brother when you faced him thus and declared him a liar!  As for me, I bear witness that he spoke the truth.”

The people asked, “O Muhammad, describe the Hallowed House for us.  How is it built, what does it look like, how near is it to the mountain?”  There were some among them who had travelled there.  He began to describe it for them and he did not stop describing it to them until he began to have doubt about the description.  He was seized with an anxiety he had not felt before, whereupon he was immediately brought to the mosque itself in Jerusalem and saw it in front of him.  He was placed outside the gate of ‘Aqil or ‘Iqal.

The people asked, “How many gates does the mosque have?”  He had not counted them before.  He looked at the gates and began to count them one by one and to inform them.

All the while Abu Bakr (r.a.) was saying, “You have spoken the truth.  You have spoken the truth.  I bear witness that you are the Messenger of Allah.”

The people said, “As for the description, then, by Allah, he is correct.”  They then turned to Abu Bakr (r.a.) and asked, “But do you believe what he said, that he went last night to the Hallowed House and came back before morning?”

He replied, “Yes, and I do believe him regarding what is farther than that.  I believe the news of Heaven he brings, whether in the space of a morning or in that of an evening journey.”  Because of this, Abu Bakr (r.a.) was named, “asw-Swiddiq”, “the Most Truthful, the One Who Never Lies”.

Then they asked, “O Muhammad, tell us about our caravans.”

He replied, “I saw the caravan of the tribe of so-and-so as I was coming back.  They had lost one of their camels and were searching for it everywhere.  I reached their mounts and there was no one with them.  I found a water bottle and I drank from it.”

Shaykh Muhammad ibn ‘Alawi (q.s.) said, doubt has been raised about this report on the basis of the question how could he allow himself to drink the water without permission from its owner?  The answer is that he acted according to the custom of the Arabs whereby they never refuse milk to whomever passes by and takes it, a fortiori water, and they used to instruct the herdsmen not to prevent wayfarers from taking milk from the herd without asking the owner, and this applies even more to water.  Furthermore, the Prophet (s.a.w.) comes before the believers’ own selves and properties, and this applies even more to the disbelievers.

The Prophet (s.a.w.) continued, “Then I reached the caravan of the tribe of so-and-so in such-and-such a place.  I saw a red camel carrying one black container and one white one.  When I came face to face with the caravan, there was a stampede and that camel fell and its freight broke.  Then I reached the caravan of the tribe of so-and-so in at-Tan’im.  It was headed by a greyish camel on which was a black hair-cloth and two blackish containers and here are the caravans about to reach you from the mountain pass.”

They asked, “When will they arrive?”

He replied, “On the fourth day of the week.”  On that day, the Quraysh came out, expecting the caravans.  The day passed and they did not arrive.  The Prophet (s.a.w.) made an invocation and the day was extended one more hour during which the sun stood still, and the caravans came.

They went to meet the riders and asked them, “Did you lose a camel?”  They said yes.  They asked the second caravan, “Did one red camel of yours shatter her freight?”  They said yes.  They asked the first caravan, “Did anyone lose a water bottle?”

One man said, “I did, by Allah.  I had prepared it but none of us drank it nor was it spilled on the ground!”

At this, they accused the Prophet (s.a.w.) of sorcery and they said, “al-Walid spoke the truth.”  And Allah (s.w.t.) Revealed the verse:

… We Granted the Vision which We Showed thee, but as a trial for men … (Surah al-Isra’:60)


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