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National

June 20, 2017

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Wonders that happened in Ramazan for Pakistanis, Muslims

Wonders that happened in Ramazan for Pakistanis, Muslims

LAHORE: Ramazan, the month of inward spiritual reflection and purification, has been extremely lucky for Pakistanis, in particular, and the Muslims, in general, for the last 1400 years or so. 

On June 18, 2017 or on 22nd Ramazan, the Pakistani cricket team had succeeded in trampling all over their Indian arch rivals in London by a whopping 180-run margin to avenge a series of humiliating defeats in recent years.

The green shirts managed to inflict an astounding thud upon a more experienced and gifted Indian team against the odds that were heavily stacked against them as analysts, bookies and punters had dubbed the Pakistanis "under-dogs" and "minnows."

While Pakistan was born on the night of 27th Ramazan (August 14, 1947), the Pakistani cricket team under Imran Khan had won the 1992 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand some 25 years ago during this holy month.

The Battle of Badr, the mother of all defining moments in Islam, was fought on Tuesday, March 13, 624 or on 17th Ramazan (two years after Prophet Muhammad's historic immigration) in the Hejaz region of modern day Saudi Arabia.

On one side, Allah’s last Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) was leading a battalion of just 313 followers, just two horses and 70 camels against the well-equipped idolaters of Quraish with their superior numbers, weapons and wealth (950 infantry and cavalry: 100 horses and 170 camels).

This decisive victory in the early days of Islam is being attributed to divine intervention and Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH)’s strategic military genius in the war zone. This was the first large-scale engagement between the two forces. Advancing to a strong defensive position some 70 miles (110 km) southwest of Medina, the Prophet’s disciplined force had broken the Meccan lines, killing several important Quraishi leaders including the Muslims' chief antagonist Abu Jahl. 

While only 14 Muslims had embraced martyrdom in this battle, 70 non-believers were killed and a matching number was held captive.  Historians have stated that this victory had also signaled to the other tribes that a new power was born in Arabia and had consolidated Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)'s position as a prime leader.

Students of Islamic history would know that the Conquest of Mecca had also happened during the month of Ramazan, some eight years after Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) had immigrated to Yathrib (later known as Medina), on the invitation of a group of Arabs from that town.

Mecca was hence conquered by Muslims on 20th Ramazan, 8th Hijri, or on January 11, 630 AD. Having sent his adherents ahead, Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) had secretly left with Hazrat Abu Bakr (RA), leaving Hazrat Ali (RA) in his bed in a bid to deceive the Meccans who had sought to kill him.

On their way, Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) and his companion had stopped at a cave on Mount Thaur, where a spider’s web (spun across the entrance) had prevented the infidels from looking within the natural underground chamber in the hillside.

Allah’s last messenger Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) had started his journey on 6th Ramazan and had entered Medina on 18th Ramazan. The conquest of Makkah was a turning point in world history as the Holy Kaa’ba was once more dedicated to the worship of Allah alone.

It was also during Ramazan that great Muslim general and conqueror, Salahuddin Ayubi, known in the West as Saladin, had beaten 20,000 crusaders in the Battle of Hattin in present day Israel on July 4, 1187. It is also known as the Battle of the Horns of Hattin. 

Salahuddin Ayubi’s 30,000 men had captured or killed the vast majority of the Christian Crusader forces, removing their capability to wage war. As a direct result of the battle, Muslims once again became the eminent military power in Jerusalem by re-conquering the holy city. This Christian defeat had prompted the Third Crusade, which began two years after the Battle of Hattin. 

The month of Ramazan also witnessed Muslims winning the Battle of Guadalete, which was fought in July 711 or 712 (92nd year after Hijrat or historic immigration of Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) and his followers from Mecca to Medina)

Muslims were led by Tariq Ibne Ziyad (a slave of the Umayyad governor of Africa) and the Christians were spearheaded by King Ruderic, who lost his life in this battle. The armies that met in battle on the day had decided the fate of the Gothic kingdom in Spain.

After this war, Tariq emerged as one of the greatest generals the world has ever seen. History has it that Tariq had literally burned the boats that brought him and his comrades. The move of the supreme Muslim commander thus meant that there was no retreat and the only aim was to overpower the King of Spain. Despite being outnumbered by the enemy by a ratio of at least 3 to 1, the Muslims managed on to defeat King Ruderic and had gone on to take over the whole of Spain and most of the France.

And this battle had marked the start of an 800-year long rule of Muslims in this region. The Umayyad civilization had hence laid the foundation of the European enlightenment and proved that Muslims, Christians and Jews could live together in peace and exemplary harmony.

The Battle of Ain Jalut (Goliath) was also fought during Ramazan (September 3, 1260) between the Saif ad-Din Qutuz-led Muslims and the barbaric Mongols led by Kitbuqa, a lieutenant of famous Mongol Emperor Halaku Khan, who was grandson of the legendary invader Genghis Khan (Changaiz Khan). 

Just before this battle, Halaku Khan had taken the bulk of his forces back with him to attend a ceremony in Mongolia, Kitbuqa was left in control of Syria, and was responsible for further Mongol raids southwards towards Egypt. He was killed at the Battle of Ain Jalut. 

Historians state that after a good part of the Islamic world had collapsed at the hands of the raging Mongols, Egypt’s Sultan Qutuz had decided that he wasn’t just going to wait for his turn to die and took the Mongols head-on.

 

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