Journey to Makkah. Early in 629 C.E. on the occasion of the Hajj the Holy Prophet at the head of 2,000 Muslims including Abu Bakr proceeded to Makkah to perform the Hajj, in accordance with the terms of the Hudaibiya pact. As the Muslims reached Makkah, most of the Quraish left their houses, and climbed the neighboring hills. In view of the Hudaibiya pact, the Quraish had no option but to permit the Muslims visit Makkah, but they were loah to welcome the Muslims. Their general view was that if their young men and women came in contact with the Muslims, they were apt to be attracted by the new faith, and as such any contact with the Muslims was to be avoided.
Reaction of the Muslims. In contrast to the Quraish the Muslims felt very happy on their visit to the sacred city of Makkah. The Muhajreen were ill particular happy to revisit the city of their birth. They were visiting the city after seven years. Much had happened during these years. The Muslims were no longer a small group of hapless people exposed to the persecution of the Quraish, they were now a power in Arabia. It was a proof positive of the truth of Islam. The Muslims offered their prayers in the Kaaba. The “Adhaan” resounded in the valleys of Makkah, and the Quraish felt very much irritated at the call. They felt that they had made a mistake in making the Hudaibiya pact, and allowing the Muslims access to Makkah. Some of the Muslims felt that as the city was practically deserted they could very well occupy it. The Holy Prophet vetoed the suggestion. Islam enjoined the Muslims to honor their pledge, and they could not resort to any treachery. The Holy Prophet said that the day was not distant when the Muslims would return to Makkah as victors, and that might be sooner than what they could think of.
Abu Bakr. Abu Bakr visited his father and other family members in Makkah. It was a happy reunion, but as his father and other family members were still pagans, Abu Bakr prayed to God that He may show them His Light. Abu Bakr met some of his old friends among the Quraish. In spite of their hostility to Islam his Quraish friends could not fail to notice that under the impact of Islam, Abu Bakr was a changed man, and this change was definitely a change for the better.
Consequences of the Muslim visit to Makkah. The visit of the Muslims to Makkah was very short and did not extend beyond three days but it led to some far reaching consequences. Maimuna a young Quraish lady of twenty-six years was so much impressed with the general behavior of the Holy Prophet and the Muslims that she professed her faith in Islam. She was a sister-in-law of Abbas, an uncle of the Holy Prophet. Abbas advised the Holy Prophet to marry the young lady in recognition of her conversion. The Holy Prophet agreed and was married to Maimuna in Makkah. As a result of the Muslim visit to Makkah, it was not Maimuna alone who realized the truth of Islam. Even men like Khalid bin Walid the hero of the Quraish victory at Uhud realized the truth of Islam, and was converted to Islam soon after the return of the Muslims from Makkah. Another great warrior Amr b. Al-‘A’as also hastened to accept Islam.
Return to Madina. When the three days were over, Suhail b. Amr and Hwitab b. Abdul Uzza came to the Holy Prophet as emissaries of the Quraish and desired that the Muslims should leave Makkah. The Holy Prophet desired that as he had been married to Maimuna he should be allowed to hold the marriage feast in Makkah and the Quraish should share the feast with the Muslims. The Quraish emissaries said, “We are not in need of your meals.” The Muslims were strong enough to stay in Makkah in spite of the refusal of the Quraish, but the Holy Prophet said that he would remain faithful to his pledge. He accordingly left Makkah along with his followers.
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