When Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and Hazrat Abu Bakr (R.A) began their migration to Mecca, the growing political hold of the Muslims and the changing social dynamics agitated the Meccan tribes who planned to murder the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) (Naoozobillah). Fearing that, the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and his uncle Abu Bakr hid in the Cave of Thawr for three days, which is located outside Mecca. Abu Bakr (R.A) entered the cave first to check if any dangerous creatures were living inside. He also clogged all the cracks and openings with rags so that no insect can crawl or slither out and sting the Prophet of Allah. By the command of Allah, a spider spun a web on the mouth of the cave and doves laid eggs in their nest, giving the bounty hunters the impression that there was no one in the cave. Making his thigh support for Hazrat Muhammad (S.A.W)’s head, Hazrat Abu Bakr stuffed the heel of his foot into a hole but unfortunately was bitten by an insect living inside. The pain from the poisonous bite was intense, but Hazrat Abu Bakr did not move because the beloved Prophet of Allah (S.A.W) was sleeping on his leg. Teardrops began to fall down the cheek of Hazrat Abu Bakr, who was trying to tolerate the pain silently. The tears dripped on Hazrat Muhammad (S.A.W)’s face and woke him up. The Prophet of Allah (S.A.W) then performed a miracle and rubbed his spittle on the aching wound on Hazrat Abu Bakr’s (R.A) heel. The pain was gone and the injury healed by Allah’s permission. Many pilgrims visiting the cave pray to Allah and ask for peace and blessing. People with debilitating pain, ailments and diseases pray for relief at this sacred site.
The Cave of Hira is the place where Hazrat Muhammad (S.A.W) received the first revelation from Allah. The archangel Gabriel appeared to Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) and inspired in him the first ayah of the Quran.
The Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) was not new to meditation. Even before the first revelation, Prophet Muhammad used to yearn for the solitude of the cave and used to meditate for days at an end. It was in the month of Ramadan when the Jibrael (A.S) appeared as a man and entered the cave. He told our Prophet (S.A.W) to read. Being untaught, Prophet Muhammad said to him that he could not recite. Jibrael (A.S) this time hugged the Prophet and pressed him until he was gasping for air then released him, only to insist that he should read. The Prophet again replied that he could not read. The angel tightly gripped the Prophet’s (S.A.W) chest a third time and asked him, yet again, to Read. The Prophet again informed him that he that he is unable to. Jibrael (A.S) then revealed the first verse of the Quran which is as under:
“Read in the name of your Lord, the Creator. He Who created man from a clot. Read! And your Lord is the Most Bounteous. Who taught by the Pen, taught man what he knew not.” [96:1-5]
Pilgrims visit the Cave of Hira to see the place where the Quran was first revealed, and Muhammad (S.A.W) was granted Prophethood.
This is the ancient cemetery in which the Prophet Muhammad’s wife Hazrat Khadija (R.A), the Prophet’s sons Qasim and Abdullah, Abu Talib the uncle of the Prophet and his grandfather are buried. Several Sahabah-e-Akram are also buried in this graveyard. Before 1925, there were many mausoleums in the cemetery, but ever since the start of the dynasty of Al-Saud these mausoleums were removed. Pilgrims visiting this graveyard, pray for the departed souls of the Prophet Muhammad’s family members, the Sahabah and for their own family members who have left this earth.
The Mosque of the Jinn is where the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) imparted the word of Allah to the Jinn. The Jinn are another creation of Allah, made from fire and are more ancient than the human race. Being the “Rehmat-ul-Alameen”, the Prophet Muhammad gave sermons to the jinn at this location, and the mosque was built here later. The Surah Jinn was also revealed at this location. According to Abdullah Bin Mas’ood (R.A), who was the only sahabi who dared to accompany the Prophet (S.A.W) when he was educating the Jinn, the troops of these paranormal beings began to arrive so much so that Hazrat Abdullah Bin Mas’ood (R.A) lost sight of the Prophet in the crowd.
Believing in the existence of the Jinn is part of our religion. Pilgrims visiting the mosque realise the multidimensionality of Islam and understand that being the “Ashraf-ul-Makhlooqat”, we need to continually thank Allah for his blessings and remain steadfast in prayer.
The well of Tuwa is now part of Mecca, but back in the times of the Prophet, Tuwa was a separate locality outside the city limits. The Prophet is said to have bathed in the blessed waters of the Tuwa well. According to some traditions the Prophet Muhammad said that “a thousand prophets of the Bani Israel had bathed in the waters of the Tuwa.” At the time of the conquest of Mecca, when Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) was about to enter the city, he spent the night at this location and in the morning bathed from the waters of the well. The area of the Tuwa has now been urbanised and incorporated in the Mecca city domain. The well, however, remains intact and can be visited at the request of the pilgrim.
The Kiswah is the black cloth the covers the Kaba’ah. The Kiswah was not always black, which is the standard colour of the Kiswah cloth these days. The tradition of adorning the Kaba’ah predates the times of our Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W). In the life of the Prophet Muhammad, the Kiswah cloth accidentally caught fire when an old woman, in reverence of the Kaba’ah, placed the smouldering incense sticks between the cracks of the structure. Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) then bought the best white Yemeni fabric to adorn the Kaba’ah again. In the times after the four first Caliphs of Islam, the Kaba’ah was dressed in a red Kiswah in the month of Moharram, a white Kiswah in Ramadan and a green one at the times of the Hajj. Until recently, different governments in the Muslim World were granted the opportunity to make the Kiswah and then ship it to Mecca every year. Nowadays, the Kiswah factory adorns the black cloth over the Khanna-e-Kaba’ah. The factory produces the Kiswah year after year, which is made of dyed black silk, and gold and silver thread. The Kiswah factory also has a museum that displays the ancient ghila’af of the Khanna-e-Kaba’ah.