MUSLIM SCHOOL OF RIGHT GUIDANCE
SAYYIDATINA AISHA SIDDIQA
by: Syed Yasin Ali
Sayyidatina Aisha Siddiqa (Rady Allahu Anha) was born in 9 B.H, 613 C.E, the fourth year of the Prophethood. She was the daughter of Sayyidina Abu Bakr Siddiq (Rady Allahu Anhu) and Umm Rumaan (Rady Allahu Anha). Her father was the greatest Sahabi (Companion) of Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam). She was born as a Muslim as she said, “When I reached the age of understanding, my parents had already become Muslims.” This clearly shows that she was raised up as a Muslim.
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) was married to the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) after his most beloved first wife Sayyidatina Khadija (Rady Allahu Anha) passed away. She was married to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) in the month of Shawwal in the 10th year of Nubuwwah. It is reported by Sayyidatina Aisha herself that the Holy Prophet told her that she had been shown to him in a dream and for three successive nights an angel brought a vision of her wrapped up in a silk cloth and said, “This is your wife.” He also said, “When the garment was removed from the face, it was you yourself.” Then he said, “If this is from Allah let Him carry it out.” (Bukhari and Muslim).
Khawlah bint Hakim (Rady Allahu Anha), the niece of Sayyidatina Khadija (Rady Allahu Anha) suggested to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) that he should get married to Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha), and she was the one who took his marriage proposal to the house of Sayyidina Abu Bakr Siddiq (Rady Allahu Anhu) and it was accepted. It was a tradition among the Arabs, whether they were Muslim or non-Muslim to get their daughters married at an early age. But they would move to the houses of their husbands when they grew up. Thus, Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) was married to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) at the age of six in Makka, and moved to live with him after his migration to Madina.
After marrying the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam), she continued to join him in his devotion to Allah by praying and fasting. She also bore the poverty and the hunger which lasted for long periods in the Prophet’s house. Sometimes, they weren’t able to cook bread for several days and had to depend on dates and water only.
The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) spent the last moments of his life with Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha). During his last illness, he used to lay his head on her lap. He passed away in her room, and her room became his final resting place.
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) was a very pious and charitable lady. She liberated many slaves. Once, she received a gift of one hundred thousand dirhams. She was fasting when she received the gift and she distributed the entire amount of money to the poor and needy despite having no provisions for herself in the house. Shortly after that, a maidservant came to her and said, “Could you buy meat for a dirham with which you can break your fast?” She replied, “If I had remembered, I would have done so.”
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) had a strong memory. Once, her father and two Companions who were staying with him fell ill with a dangerous fever. One morning she went to visit him and was dismayed to find the three men lying completely weak and exhausted. She asked her father how he was and he answered her in verse but she did not understand what he was saying. The two others also answered her with lines of poetry that she couldn’t understand. She was deeply troubled and went home to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam). He asked her what they had said and was somewhat reassured when she repeated almost word for word the lines they had uttered and which made sense although she did not fully understand them. This was a demonstration of the strong memory she possessed which enabled her to memorize thousands of ahadith (Sayings of Prophet Muhammad, Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam).
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) spent much of her time learning and acquiring knowledge about Islam. She was one of the only four Companions of the Prophet including Hadrat Abu Hurairah, Hadrat Abdallah ibn Umar and Hadrat Anas bin Malik (Rady Allahu Anhum) to transmit over 2000 ahadith. She transmitted over 2,210 ahadith.
Some of the ahadith narrated by Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) are:
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) narrated that Allah’s Messenger said to her, “If you wish to join me (in the Hereafter), be satisfied with worldly things to the extent of a rider’s provision, avoid sitting with the rich, and do not consider a garment worn out till you patch it.” (Tirmidhi)
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) reported that she asked the Holy Prophet whose right was greatest on the woman and the Holy Prophet said, “The husband’s.” Then she asked, “Whose right was the greatest on man?” and the Holy Prophet said, “His mother’s.” (Hakim)
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) narrated that Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) said: “Making Tawaaf of Baytullah (the House of Allah in Makka), to walk between Safa and Marwah and to pelt stones (at the Jimar) have been ordained for establishing the remembrance of Allah Ta‘ala.” (Abu Dawud).
We learn from the ahadith that when Hadrat Jibril (Alayhissalam) visited the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi wa Sallam), he would greet her with Assalamu Alaykum (peace be upon you). And the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) would inform her that she was being greeted.
The Sahaba and their followers benefited very much from Sayyidatina Aisha’s vast treasure of knowledge. Hadrat Abu Musa al-Ash‘ari (Rady Allahu Anhu) once said, “If we the Companions of the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) had any difficulty on a matter, we asked Sayyidatina Aisha about it.” She was not only skilled in fiqh (jurisprudence) but she was also an expert in medicine and poetry. Many of the senior Companions of the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) used to come to her to ask for advice concerning questions of inheritance, which required a highly skilled mathematical mind.
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) was also a teacher and taught many outstanding students, who later became some of the most distinguished scholars. She had approximately 200 students. Besides teaching, she also used to take care of orphans and kept them under her care and guidance.
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) passed away on the night of Tuesday, the 17th of Ramadan, 58 A.H, at the age of sixty-seven. She was laid to rest in Jannatul Baqi in Madinah with the other Ummahat al-Mu’mineen (Mothers of Faithful Believers). She was the only wife of the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) who had not been married previously. All the remaining wives of the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) had been widowed or divorced previously.
Sayyidatina Aisha (Rady Allahu Anha) is an excellent example for women all over the world. There are verses in the Qur’an which talk about her purity. She was a leader in many fields of knowledge. She was the possessor of a vast treasure of knowledge and was a teacher of many scholars and experts. Her close relationship with the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) helped her acquire deep spiritual knowledge and insight.
She is lovingly referred to by Muslims as Umm al-Mu’mineen which means Mother of Faithful Believers. She is also called Siddiqa which means the Truthful. Her name is mentioned in the Friday khutba.