House of Abu Jahal

Location of the house of Abu Jahal
Location of the house of Abu Jahal

This spot, beyond the lamp post outside the present Mas’aa, is believed to be the approximate location of the house of Abu Jahal. Abu Jahal was a relative of the Prophet (ﷺ) and one of the worst enemies of Islam. He was described by the Prophet (ﷺ) as the ‘Fir’awn’ (Pharoah) of this Ummah.

  • Abu Jahal’s actual name was Amr ibn Hisham but he was commonly known as Abu Hakam (“Father of Wisdom”) among the Quraysh as he was considered a wise man. His relentless hostility and belligerence towards Islam earned him the name Abu Jahal (Father of Ignorance) among the Muslims. He was a member of the Banu Makhzum clan of the Quraysh.
  • Abu Jahal was not a real uncle of the Prophet (ﷺ) [not his father’s real brother] but his father’s cousin. He was a staunch polytheist and greatly disliked the Prophet (ﷺ), taking any opportunity to rebuke and publicly humiliate him.
  • He was one of the greatest persecutors of the Muslims. When a Muslim convert was discovered among the hierarchy of a tribe, Abu Jahal would reprimand the convert and then ridicule him in front of his fellow tribesmen so he would lost their respect. When he discovered a trader had converted to Islam he gave orders that no one should engage in business with him. As a result, the convert trader was unable to sell his wares and became impoverished.
  • Convert slaves belonging to the polytheist Quraysh received the harshest punishment. Abu Jahal beat Harithah bint al-Muammil (رضي الله عنها), one such slave, for her conversion to such an extent that she lost her eyesight. He attacked Sumayyah bint Khayyaṭ, the mother of Ammar (رضي الله عنه) and inflicted on her mortal wounds by stabbing her with a spear in her private parts. This blessed lady was the first to meet martyrdom in the cause of Islam.
  • When Umar (رضي الله عنه) embraced Islam, he was determined to announce his new faith to the Prophet’s (ﷺ) enemies and the first place he went to was the house of Abu Jahal. Umar (رضي الله عنه) knocked on his door, Abu Jahal came out and greeted him,“Welcome! What brings you here?”
    “I have come to tell you that I have embraced the religion of Allah and His Messenger, Muhammad,” Umar calmly stated.
    Abu Jahal heard this and disgustedly said, “May God ruin you and what you have brought! and slammed the door shut.

References:  Local Makkan guide, When the Moon Split – Safiur Rahman Mubarakpuri, Fazail-e-Aamal – Sheikh Zakariyya Kandhalvi

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