The holy city of Medina

Masjid_Nabawi_Madina_(4)

Alhamdulillah, after two hours flight across The Mediterranean Sea, Cyprus, and Egypt we’re finnaly arrived in Medina. As soon as the plane lowered the height, the cloud curtain was open, Uhud Hill similar to the red camel welcomed our arrival. The white houses of Medina as well as the not-so-tall buildings symbolize modesty while the green foliage is nothing but the palm trees of the locals causing an odd feeling; Similar to one’s longing for his hometown.

The plane’s doors were opened and the passengers started rushing toward the airport; suddenly i smelled the familar scent that i encountered six months ago. The distinctive aroma of Medina that I never get bored with since five years ago, “Thank God to returned me to the city of Your prophet.”

From the conveyor belt to the immigration counter i watched plane after plane parked neatly on a yellowish white square. The atmosphere at Prince Mohammad bin Abdul Aziz Airport is so quiet and comfortable as we are walking among rows of bookshelves in the library. Hajj Terminal at King Abdul Aziz Airport Jeddah too offers quietness under its large white umbrellas; But not as quite as Medina.

 

Its history

Located 430 Km north of Mecca the city previous name was Yathrib. When the prophet migrated there, He change the name into Al Madinah. It is surrounded by hill and have fertile soil, thus we can find plenty plantation there. Medina in the past became a stopover for Sham merchants (Syrians, Palestinians, Lebanese, and Jordans) who wanted to trade to Yemen or vice versa. Generally the caravans that go to Medina (and also Mecca) carry a variety of commodities such as cloth, clothing, oil, wheat, perfume, jewelry, and weapons. These items were sold well in Medina while from there the caravans went home or continued on as they transported Medina’s distinctive products such as dates, wheat, and household utensils. In the time of Ommayad Empire, It is well known that the products of Medina can be found in India, Persia, Bukhara (Uzbekistan), or Egypt.

Before The prophet and companions emigrating from Mecca, Medina was ruled by two rival Arab tribes which have their own Jewish alies. While the Aus and Khazraj tribes count as natives, the Jews were migrated from Palestine after the destruction of Kingdom of Judea.

The history of Jews and Bani Israil started from Prophet Ya’qub; the one whose name (Israil) was given by Allah. In the time of Prophet David they found the Israil Kingdom. After David, his heir who also a prophet ruled the kingdom. He is Prophet Sulaiman. After Sulaiman’s death, the Kingdom of Israel split into two. The ten tribes of Israel in the north retained the kingdom, while the other two tribes established the Jewish Empire in the south. Over time, the Kingdom of Israel was conquered by the Assyrian Empire while the Jewish Empire was destroyed by the Babylonian Empire. The three tribes of the Jewish Kingdom (Nadhir, Quraizhah, and Qoinuqo) then migrated to Medina and lived next to the Aus and Khazraj. Because they came from the Jewish Kingdom they were inclined to be called Jews rather than the Children of Israel.

When a group of Aus and Khazraj perform pilgrimage to Mecca they meet the Messenger of Allah and convert to Islam. They even swore allegiance under the Ridwan tree to defend the Prophet and the imigrant with their souls and possessions. Since then to his death, The Prophet never left the Aus and Khazraj. He even called them Ansar or the helper. After the liberation of Mecca, the Ansar worried that The Prophet will settle in Mecca. He calmed them by telling that he would return to Medina and stay forever with the people of Ansar.

 

It’s Privileges
This is the city consecrated by the Prophet. A city that became the meeting point to the islamic scholars around the world. The one who begin the tradition was a companion named Abu Hurairah. Then came Umar ibn Abdul Aziz, and Imam Malik ibn Anas. Now thousands of students from various countries stay there to study the Islamic science. Thus blessed the city to one of its messages, the Messenger of Allah said,

من استطاع أن يموت بامدينة فليمت بها، فإني أشفع لمن يموت بها

“Whoever among you able to die in Medina then die in Medina, I will indeed intercede to who died in Medina.”[1]

 

This city is also protected by Allah until the Day of Judgment. When every place in the world is visited by the Antichrist, only Medina and Mecca stand firm,

عَلَى أَنْقَابِ الْمَدِيْنَةٌ مَلاَ ءِكَةٌ لَا يَدْخُلُهَا الطَّاءُوْنُ وَ لَا الدَّجَّالُ

” There are angels on the streets of Medina, (Medina) will not entered by plague nor by Dajjal (Antichrist).”[2]

 

Another feature of Medina is it status as one of the three Islamic shrines. The Prophet said,

لَا تُسَّدُ الرِحَّالُ إَلَّا إلَى ثَلَاثَةِ مَسَاجِدَ المَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَ مَسجِدِ الرَّسُوْلِ وَ مَسْجِدِ الْاَقْصَى

“It is not allowed to travel for pilgrimage (in the framework of worship), except to the three mosques. The Grand Mosque (in Mecca), The Messenger’s Mosque (in Medina), and The Aqsa Mosque (in Jerusalem).[3]

 

One should aware the magnitude of The Messenger’s which located within the city,

صَلاَةٌ فِى مَسْجِدِى هَذَا خَيْرٌ مِنْ أَلْفِ صَلاَةٍ فِيمَا سِوَاهُ إِلاَّ الْمَسْجِدَ الْحَرَامَ

“Prayers in my mosque (Masjid Nabawi) are better than 1000 prayers in other mosques except the Haram (Grand) Mosque.”[4]

[1] Narated by At-Tirmidzi

[2] Shahih, narated by Al-Bukhari (no. 1880) and Muslim (no. 1379)

[3] Shahih, narated by Al-Bukhari (no. 1189) and Muslim (no. 1397)

[4] Shahih. Narated by Al-Bukhari (no. 1190) and Muslim (no. 1394), narated by Abu Hurairah

 

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