Jabal Thawr is the mountain that contains the cave in which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) sought refuge for three days and nights from the Quraysh, as they left Makkah and emigrated to Madinah.

  • When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) arrived at the cave on Mount Thawr, Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) entered first to clear away anything that might injure the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). He found a few holes and stuffed them with pieces of cloth. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) then entered and went to sleep on Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him)’s lap. Suddenly , something stung Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him)’s foot, but he did not twitch, fearing he would wake the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). The pain was so intense that tears began to run down his cheeks and onto the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him)’s face. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) woke up and saw that Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) was in pain. He applied his spittle on the injury and the pain disappeared.
  • For three consecutive nights the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) remained hidden in the cave. During this period, Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him)’s son, Abdullah, would pass his nights nearby. The young man would return to Makkah very early in the morning so that the Quraysh had no idea that he had slept elsewhere. Each day in Makkah he collected information about the activities of the Quraysh, and each night went back to Jabl Thawr to inform the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and his father Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him).
  • Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him)’s slave, Amir bin Fuhayra (may Allah be pleased with him), would graze Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him)’s goats near the cave so that both men could drink fresh milk. Early the next morning Amir would drive the goats back to Makkah along the same route that Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him)’s son took, to obscure his footprints.
  • When they were inside Allah (Glorified and Exalted is He) sent a spider to spin a web from a bush across the entrance to the cave. Allah (Glorified and Exalted is He) also commanded two doves to fly down between the spider and the tree, make a nest and lay eggs. Meanwhile the Quraysh search party scoured the area south of Makkah where the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) where hiding. They came upon the mouth of the cave, and had they looked down while standing at the edge of the cave, they would have surely found the men they were hunting.
  • With the Quraysh so close to discovering their hiding place, Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) became very tense about the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him)’s safety. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) reassured him, “How can you be apprehensive about two with whom is a third, especially when the third one is Allah?”
  • On seeing the spider’s web and dove nest, the Quraysh concluded that no one could have entered the cave and left. Describing this scene the Quran mentions in Surah Taubah:“If ye help not (your leader), (it is no matter): for Allah did indeed help him, when the Unbelievers drove him out: he had no more than one companion; they two were in the cave, and he said to his companion, “Have no fear, for Allah is with us”: then Allah sent down His peace upon him, and strengthened him with forces which ye saw not, and humbled to the depths the word of the Unbelievers. But the word of Allah is exalted to the heights: for Allah is Exalted in might, Wise.“ [9:40]
  • After three days when they learnt that the search by the Quraysh had petered out left the cave and headed towards Yathrib (Madinah). Asma (may Allah be pleased with her), the daughter of Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) came to them bringing food for the journey. When they were about to start she could find nothing to tie it to their saddles with and so she undid her waistband, tore it in two, wore half and tied the food with the other half. This ready solution won her praise from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) who also named her ‘She of the two waistband’. And ever after that the Muslims knew her by that name.

References:  When the Moon Split – Shaikh Safiur-Rahman Mubarakpuri, The Life of Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) – Tahia Al-Ismail

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