The battle of Uhud was the second ghazwah in Islamic history. After the Qureish lost the first ghazwah of Badr, they could not swallow their defeat by a smaller army of 313 Muslims. The battle of Uhud was a means to avenge the dead, in the Battle of Badr. Uhud is a mountainous area, and the war was fought on the foothills of the Uhad Mountains. The Prophet Muhammad’s (S.A.W) army reached the mountains before the Qureish could, so he guided the archers to stand on the hills and protect the mujahedeen from the rare. The Qureshi army though was greater in size, fled back after a brief battle. With the war booty lying on the ground, the Muslims began to rush to collect the valuables. Back in those times, war booty was a means of livelihood. The archers disobeyed the Prophet’s orders and also joined in to gather the loot. The Meccans realised this golden opportunity and returned for a second strike against the Muslim army. With the archers gone, the rare of the Muslim army was exposed to another team of the Qureish, who began to sandwich the Muslim army both sides.
There were in total 70 Muslim martyrs and many injured sahabah in the Uhad battle. There were fewer burial shrouds available than the bodies of the martyrs and so, the martyrs of Uhud shared graves. The tombs and monuments were built on top of these graves, but in the 1970s these monuments were razed due to the suspicion of shirk. Only the graves of Hazrat Hamza (R.A), Hazrat Mus’ab bin Umair (R.A) and Hazrat Abdullah-bin-Jahsh (R.A) remains intact and identifiable. The rest of the sahabah are resting in a large enclosure, marked by a fenced wall. It is a Sunnah to pray for the martyred of Uhad.
The Jannat ul Baqee is the resting grounds for several of the family members of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W) and many of his companions. Among the fortunate resting in the graveyard are the aunts of the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) namely, Hazrat Safiyyah (R.A) and Hazrat Aatika (R.A), grandson of the Prophet-the illustrious Hazrat Hassan (R.A) and his wives and children. The Jannat ul Baqee has a special place in Muslim history and ideology. Pilgrims are advised to visit the graveyard at least once in their lifetime and pray for the great personalities lying in the graves of Jannat ul Baqee.
Praying at the graveyard is also a Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W). According to tradition, once the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) was spending the night with his wife, Ayesha (R.A). The Prophet (S.A.W) woke up in the middle of the night and exited Hazrat Ayesha’s house, without letting her know that he was leaving. Curious about her husband’s whereabouts, Hazrat Ayesha followed our Prophet (S.A.W) and found out that he went to pray at the Jannat ul Baqee. When Hazrat Muhammad (S.A.W) ran back to Hazrat Ayesha’s house, fearing that she might start to worry due to his absence, Hazrat Ayesha who was spying on him also ran back hurriedly to her house. Our Prophet reached the house shortly after Hazrat Ayesha jumped back into her bed. Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) inquired from his wife as to why she was breathing so heavily. Hazrat Ayesha told him the truth, and later Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) explained that archangel Hazrat Jibrael (A.S) appeared to him and conveyed that Allah requires the Prophet to ask forgiveness on behalf of those resting in the Jannat ul Baqee. This hadith exalts all the souls resting in the blessed graveyard. Pilgrims must if time permits, visit this cemetery and ask for forgives for their souls and the souls of the departed.
The Mosque of Quba is the first mosque built in Muslim History. The Quba mosque is the place where the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and Hazrat Abu Bakr first camped outside the city of Madinah after their migration from Mecca. The Mosque of Quba has been mentioned in the Quran as well, in the Surah Tubah [9:108], when it talks about “a mosque founded on piety from the very first day”. There is an authentic hadith of the Prophet, enlisted in the Sunan ibn Majah, that says:
He who purifies himself at his home and comes to Masjid Quba and offers two rakats therein will be rewarded the reward of an Umrah (lesser pilgrimage).”
This hadith illustrates that the sawab of an Umrah can be gained by just praying two rakats at the Masjid-al-Quba. That is indeed a blessing that all pilgrims must secure when visiting Saudi Arabia for Umrah.
The Masjid ul Qiblatain is a historically significant mosque. This is where the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) was asked to change the direction of the Qiblah while he was praying. When Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) was in Mecca, he used to pray in the direction of Bait ul Muqadis in Jerusalem. He had longed for the Qiblah to change and so when he had migrated to Madinah, the order from Allah came in the form of a revelation. The Prophet (S.A.W) was leading the Zuhr or Asr prayer when the following surah was revealed to him.
“Verily, We have seen the turning of your (Muhammad’s) face towards the heaven. Surely, We shall turn you to a Qiblah (prayer direction) that shall please you, so turn your face in the direction of Al-Masjid Al-Haram (at Mecca). And wheresoever you people are, turn your faces (in prayer) in that direction.” [2:144]
The Prophet then changed his direction and continued praying by facing the Kaba’ah. The companions also copied the Prophet (S.A.W) and finished their praying according to the changed Qiblah direction. The mosque, therefore, has two mehrab, one in the direction of the Kaba’ah and the other in the direction of Bait ul Muqadis. Pilgrims visiting this unique mosque realise that the Kaba’ah is a marker that Allah has set for the Muslims to face during worship and the Bait ul Muqadis was the first Qiblah of the Muslims.