HAZRAT A’ISHAH (ra)

Hazrat A’ishah (ra) was the respected wife of the Holy Prophet (saw). She was the daughter of Hazrat Abu Bakr (ra) (the first Khalifa of Islam) and Hazrat Ummi Ruman (ra). Hazrat Ummi Ruman (ra) was a very pious lady who led a very simple life. On her death, the Holy Prophet (saw) said: “Anyone who desires to see a lady of paradise should look at Ummi Rūmān.”

Marriage
After the death of Hazrat Khadījah (ra), the Holy Prophet (saw) considered marrying again. He prayed to Allah Almighty for guidance and was shown the following dream:
Gabriel (as) came before him, presented him with a green silk handkerchief, and said, “This is your wife, in this world and in the hereafter.” When the Holy Prophet (saw) looked at this handkerchief, upon it was the picture of ‘Ā’ishah (ra) bint Abū Bakr (ra).

Shortly after this dream, Khaulah bint Ḥakīm (ra) also suggested the name of Hazrat A’ishah (ra) to the Holy Prophet(saw). He asked her to take the marriage proposal to Hazrat Abu Bakr (ra). The marriage ceremony took place in Shawwāl 10 Nabawī. At that time Hazrat A’ishah (ra) was quite young and she remained with her parents. A few years later (2nd Hijri) when Hazrat A’ishah (ra) had reached the age of maturity, her (wedding) took place at the request of her father, Hazrat Abu Bakr (ra). The women of Ansar gathered together to adorn her, and Hazrat Aishah (ra) left her house to live with the Holy Prophet (saw).

Why Hazrat A’ishah (ra) was a suitable wife for the Holy Prophet (saw)
Since Hazrat Aishah (ra) was a young girl, she had the ability to learn the teachings of Islam quickly and to teach them to others, which was necessary for the wife of a law-bearing prophet. She was also extremely sharp and intelligent, and thus well suited to learning and understanding religious matters.
Hazrat A’ishah (ra) was born into Islam. As a result of this, the teachings of Islam were part of her life since childhood. She was the daughter of Awwalul Mu’minīn (the first of the believers) and the Afḍalul-Muslimīn (the best of the Muslims). Her upbringing was outstanding and was in complete accordance with Islamic traditions. For this reason, she was particularly suitable to become a model for women.

The Holy Prophet’s (saw) love for Hazrat A’ishah (ra)
The Holy Prophet (saw) had seen a dream about Hazrat A’ishah (ra) in which he was told: “Now this is your wife in this world and in the hereafter.” It is for this reason that he had great love and respect for her. On one occasion someone asked the Holy Prophet(saw)

“O Messenger of Allāh! From among the people, whom do you love most?” The Holy Prophet(saw) responded, “‘Ā’ishah.” He asked, “O Messenger of Allāh! Who is it from among the men?” The Holy Prophet(saw) responded, “The father of ‘Ā’ishah.”

Due to Hazrat A’isha’s (ra) young age, the Holy Prophet(saw) would always be mindful of her feelings. On one occasion some Abyssinian swordsmen began to demonstrate an acrobatic spectacle of lances in the presence of the Holy Prophet(saw) and his Companions. The Holy Prophet (saw) instructed them to show their demonstration in the veranda of the Masjide-Nabawī where he held Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) whilst standing along the wall of his residence. He shielded her from the public so that she could enjoy the acrobatic display.

On one occasion, the Holy Prophet(saw) competed in a race with Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra). The first time, Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) managed to win the race. After some time, when the Holy Prophet(saw) raced her again, and Hazrat A’shah (ra) lost the race. The Holy Prophet (saw) smiled and said to her
“There you are ‘Ā’ishah, now the debt has been repaid.”

There were times when some of the friends of Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) would gather in her home and amuse themselves by singing innocent couplets. The Holy Prophet(saw) would not object at all. On one occasion, when Hazrat Abū Bakr (ra) (her father) saw this and attempted to slightly reprimand the girls, the Holy Prophet(saw) stopped him saying,

“Abū Bakr, let it be. Today is the day of eid and girls enjoy entertaining themselves.”

The Holy Prophet (saw) spent the last days of his life in Hazrat A’ishah’s (ra) living quarters. He (saw) was also buried in her chamber.

Hazrat A’ishah’s (ra) remarkable qualities
Despite her young age, Ḥazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra)’s intelligence and memory was remarkable, and under the education and training of the Holy Prophet(saw) she developed at a most extraordinary pace.She had the longest possible opportunity to remain in the Holy Prophet’s(saw) company and was trained for the sensitive and magnificent work which fell upon the wife of a law-giving Prophet. Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) rendered such service in the reformation, education and training of the Muslim women, as is unparalleled in the history of the world. A very large and significant portion of the Aḥādīth of the Holy Prophet (saw) is based on the narrations of Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra), especially those which directly relate to the issues of women. She possessed a great status in general religious matters as well. It is narrated that “Even the eminent companions of the Holy Prophet (saw) would turn to the sayings of Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) and would seek religious verdicts from her”.

The number of her narrations alone reach a total of 2,210. The level of her knowledge and wisdom and deep understanding of religion was such that the most eminent companions accepted her as an authority. It is also related in narrations that after the Holy Prophet(saw), the companions were not confronted with a single scholarly issue, for which Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) did not have an answer. There is a statement of ‘Urwah bin Zubairra on record that:
“In knowledge of the Holy Qur’ān, in knowledge of the law of inheritance, in knowledge of lawful and unlawful things, in the science of jurisprudence, in poetry, in medicine, in knowledge of the narrations of Arabia, and in the science of genealogy, I have not seen a greater scholar than ‘Ā’ishah (ra)”.

She also possessed great charitable and virtuous qualities. On one occasion, she received a sum of 100,000 dirhams, and before sunset, she had distributed the entirety of it in charity, even though she did not have anything to eat for that evening in her own home.
It was her practice to free slaves abundantly. It has been narrated that she freed forty slaves upon a single instance alone. The total number of slaves that she was known to have freed is 67. It was due to these very praiseworthy attributes, which had begun to show their splendour even in the era of the Holy Prophet(saw) that she was held especially dear by the Holy Prophet (saw). He (saw) once said that

“Ā’ishah (ra) possesses such superiority over the women, as Tharīd, which is among the best foods of Arabia, possesses over other foods”

A dream of Hazrat A’ishah (ra)
Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) saw in a dream once, that three moons have fallen into her chamber. Later, the Holy Prophet(saw), Hazrat Abū Bakr (ra), and Hazrat Umar (ra) were to be buried in her chamber.

Demise
Hazrat ‘Ā’ishah (ra) lived for approximately forty-eight years after the death of the Holy Prophet(saw). She passed away in 58 A.H., during the month of Ramaḍān, at the age of 68.

References

  1. Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra (2011) The Life & Character of the Seal of Prophets volume 1 (May Peace and Blessings of Allāh be upon him)(trans. A.M.Khan), Tilford, Islam International Publications Ltd.(online). Available at https://www.alislam.org/library/books/Seal-of-Prophets-Vol-1.pdf (accessed 27.07.2019)
  2. Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra (2013) The Life & Character of the Seal of Prophets volume 2 (May Peace and Blessings of Allāh be upon him)(trans. A.M.Khan), Tilford, Islam International Publications Ltd.(online). Available at https://www.alislam.org/library/books/Seal-of-Prophets-Vol-2.pdf (accessed 28.07.2019)
  3. Hazrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad (2013) Life of Mohammadsa (trans.Sir.M.Z.Khan), Tilford, Islam International Publications Ltd (online). Available at https://www.alislam.org/library/books/Life-of-Muhammad.pdf (accessed 27.07.2019)