Companions of the Prophet

The Torchbearers of Islam

Every family has that shelf in the living room or family room or basement that’s home to a row of books collecting dust. Whether it’s a story from childhood the family thoroughly enjoyed and forgot about, or a crisp unopened gem straight out of the Amazon packaging — we’ve all got some books stacked away on that shelf (or in that bedside drawer, or in that box under the bed).

Recently, my cousins and I finally decided to take a look at the book that awaited my attention for about a year. Its pages contained stories about heroes stronger than Superman, braver than Katniss Everdeen, and more loyal than Hagrid.

They were stories about the “Companions of the Prophet” (PBUH) written by AbdulWāhid Hāmid.

This book touched upon it all — from the inspiring depictions of exact moments when the Sahabah, or companions and disciples of the Prophet (PBUH), embraced Islam to the heartfelt conversations they had with Him (PBUH). With each page’s turn, my heart fell more in love with the examples the Sahabah set 1400 years ago.

And that’s just the thing — this was 1400 years ago and then some. So many of the Companions lived in conditions we can’t even imagine. They had little to no food, lived under the heat of the Arabian sun, with their families and former friends against them. Still, some underwent complete transformations.

Mus’ab ibn ‘Umayr was a privileged and stylish youth of Quraysh. Despite his mother’s imprisonment of him in his own home, he remained true in the path of God. Years later, he walked to a gathering of Muslims, who lowered their gaze and teared up upon seeing Mus’ab. He no longer wore the stylish garments; instead, his tattered jalbab only exemplified his attention and servitude to God and concern for the Afterlife.

‘Umar ibn Al-Khattab was on his way to kill Muhammad (PBUH), when he was told his sister embraced Islam. He turned around to go to her house and after seeing the blood on her face as a result of his own strike, he had a change of heart. He listened to what his sister, Fatimah, and her husband, Sa’id ibn Zayd, had to say. ‘Umar asked to be taken to Muhammad (PBUH), so he too could become one of the followers of Islam upon learning the verse from Surah Ta-Ha:

“Indeed, I am Allah. There is no deity except Me, so worship Me and establish prayer for My remembrance.”
        -(Qur’an 20:14)

If you’re looking for a beneficial read this summer, grab a copy of “Companions of the Prophet” (PBUH). You’ll learn about the story of revelation from multiple perspectives and discover how the prophethood of Muhammad (PBUH) changed the lives of those who became the torchbearers of Islam. Who knows? Maybe the book is already sitting on that shelf of yours. Wipe the dust off, flip open the cover, and read.