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Ramadan 2013 (Spiritual Guides)

Hazrat Bilal (R.A)

Hazrat Bilal (R.A) was an Abyssinian (Ethiopian) slave belonging to Umayya Bin Khalf, who was a bitter enemy of Islam.

Umayya Bin Khalf brutally tortured Hazrat Bilal (R.A) when he came to know that Hazrat Bilal (R.A) had embraced Islam. Umayya would put rope around Hazrat Bilal (R.A)‘s neck and drag him in the streets.

In the burning hot desert heat, Umayya Bin Khalf used to wrap Hazrat Bilal (R.A) in raw cow’s hide. Due to the great stench of rotting hide, Hazrat Bilal (R.A) would find it difficult to breathe. Umayya would also chain Hazrat Bilal (R.A) heavily, lay him on hot sand, and put heavy stones on his (R.A)‘s blessed chest, causing stones to stab and crush the chest.

One day Hazrat Abu Bakr (R.A) saw this barbaric torture and approached Umayya, “Why are you beating this friend of Allah?” Umayya replied, “If you have so much sympathy for him, then bring the money and take him away as yours”. Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddique (R.A) then paid the ransom and freed Hazrat Bilal (R.A).

After the conquest of Makkah the Holy Prophet (S.A.W) told Hazrat Bilal (R.A) to give the call of Azan from the roof top of the Holy Kaaba, when it was time for Prayer.

Hazrat Bilal (R.A) was the first Muazzin (person who gives call of prayer). He kept on giving the Azan through out his life, until the time of Holy Prophet (S.A.W) passing way from this world. Hazrat Bilal (R.A)’s grief had been so immense that he resolved that he would never do the Azan again.

Holy Prophet (S.A.W)’s passing away had completely shattered his heart and in this state, he decided that he could no longer stay in Madina Shareef. He then gathered his (R.A) belongings and left for Syria.

He had just left the border of Madina Shareef, when he (R.A) wanted to rest for a while. He found a tree to take rest, whilst resting he went to sleep and in his dream he saw the beloved Prophet (S.A.W). Rasoolullah (S.A.W) said, “Bilal, why did you leave me?” Hazrat Bilal (R.A) immediately woke up and made the journey back to Madina Shareef.

When the people of Madina saw Hazrat Bilal (R.A) returning, they were overwhelmed with joy. As Hazrat Bilal (R.A) made his way to the Holy Prophet (S.A.W)’s Masjid, requests for him to perform the Azan were ringing in his ears. People pleading for him to deliver the call to prayer once more.

As Hazrat Bilal (R.A) advanced towards the Blessed Masjid, he saw the two Beloved Grandson’s of Rasoolullah (S.A.W), Hazrat Imam Hassan and Hazrat Imam Hussain (R.A). They too requested for him to perform the Azan, and when he looked upon their blessed faces, his love for them overwhelmed his heart. He could not refuse them anything.

Hazrat Bilal (R.A) later on migrated to Damascus Syria and remained there till his demise. During his last days, Hazrat Bilal (R.A) was feeling weakness and signs of old age were evident. His beloved wife got restless; Hazrat Bilal (R.A) told his wife that there would be permanent rest. He (R.A) added that he will be in the company of Holy Prophet (S.A.W). Hazrat Bilal (R.A) passed away around 20th Hijri at the age of 60 years.