A Trial Journey

Similarly, at the time of treaty or agreement of Hudaybiah the holy Companions were put to a very severe test. A party of 1400 of them, suffering all sorts of troubles and inconvenience of the journey reached Hudaybiah from Madina but the implacable Meccans stopped them there and told them: "You cannot perform the umrah this year.” They had to return regretfully from here bearing the same hardships of journey. On unilateral conditions apparently an agreement was made as under: -

(1) The Muslims should return this year.
(2) They may come next year, stay three days and then return.
(3) They must not come armed. They may bring their swords but in sheaths and the sheaths should be in bags.
(4) They must not take along with them any Muslims who have been residing in Mecca from the very beginning and should not prevent any Muslim from living in Mecca.
(5) Should any one of the infidels go to Madina from Mecca, he should be returned but should any Muslim come to Mecca, he would not be returned.
(6) The Arabian tribes shall have the option to make pacts with either of the parties.

The Holy Prophet's peace and blessings be upon him signing this treaty under divine inspiration, despite commanding so much power was only a test of the holy Companions' sentiment of faith. Otherwise he had with him such a mighty army of well-trained headstrong soldiers that only 313 of them, clashing with a well-armed 1000-strong army of the enemy, had cut it to pieces; and most of them had been individually given the chance of seasoning their military experience by the Quraishites themselves. Thus, as regards numbers, weapons, strength and force, the Muslims scale was supreme in every way. Besides this, on this occasion, many tricks had been played from the infidel's side that the entire prophetic army was already in a state of provocation. To inflame them further there was neither any need of poetry nor rajaz (martial songs), neither of any oration nor material panegyrics, because this 1400- strong army had not come to fight but to visit the One Lord's House from where they had been driven away. It was a visit they were anxiously eager for. They had come to pass a few days on the sacred and beloved soil that was their and their ancestors, native land upon which they had been born and grown up.

Hudaybiah is a plain, a short day's march to the north of Mecca. Six years had passed since the Holy Prophet peace and blessings be upon him had left his beloved city and it had been in the hands of the Pagan autocracy. By Arab custom every Arab was entitled to visit the Sacred Enclosure (Kaabah). In. 6 A.H therefore the Holy Prophet peace and blessings be upon him decided to perform 'Umrah' or lesser pilgrimage accompanied with his followers.

A Large following joined him, to the number fourteen to fifteen hundred. Pagan autocracy at Mecca took alarm, and in breach of all Arab tradition and usage, prepared to prevent the peaceful party from performing the rites of pilgrimage. They marched out to fight the holy party. The Prophet peace and blessings be upon him encamped at Hudaybiah, where negotiations took place. On the one hand the Prophet peace and blessings be upon him was unwilling to give the Quraish any pretended excuse for violence in the Sacred Territory; on the other hand, the Quraish had learnt, by six years bitter experience, that their power was crumbling on all sides, and Islam was growing with its moral and spiritual forces. The enthusiasm with which the Covenant of Fealty was entered into under a tree in Hudaybiah by the great multitude united in devotion to their great leader, was the evidence of great power which he commanded even in worldly sense if the Quraish had chosen to try conclusions with him.

A Peace Treaty was therefore concluded. known as the, ‘Treaty of Hudaybiah’.

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