Aisha Bint Abu-Bakr Her background A’isha Bint Abu-Bakr • A’isha was born to Muslim parents • Daughter of Abu Bakr (the first rightly guided caliph) • Married Muhammad at the age of 7 years old, she was Muhammad's third wife after the Hijra when the followers fled to Medina. • Provided inspiration and leadership for both men and women of Islam. • Not allowed to remarry after Muhammad's death. The Impact of A’isha bint AbuBakar • Marriage was arranged for political gain, though widely believed that Muhammad and A’isha were genuinely fond of each other. • It is said that she was his favourite wife. • A’isha enjoyed prestige and influence because of this marriage • Muslim’s believe all Muhammad’s marriages were halal (legitimate) because they were commanded by Allah and all the wives were exceptional women. • Jibril brought Muhammad Aisha’s image in a piece of silk and said, “Marry her, she is your wife.” • Challenged to purdah (traditional Hindu or Muslim system of keeping women secluded) and role model for women as she didn’t fit cultural stereotype. • Believed by many that he died with his head in her lap • After Muhammad’s death, she became known as the “Mother of Believers”. • Influenced establishment of Islam as a religious tradition • Active in her participation in Muslim rituals and prayer • Aisha was; - Role model for Muslim women - Strength of personality - A Leader Aisha was instrumental in the development and expression of Islam. A’isha Her knowledge of the Quran • A’isha and the Qur’an - A’isha journeys led to two revelations in the Quran. The first incident occurred when Muhammad was returning home from the fight against bana al- mustaliq. • The second journey impacted on the way Muslims perform ablution (The ritual washing of the hands and face in preparation for prayer). • A great poet, orator A’isha was a great public speaker and her ability to write and speak fluently helped her spread the word of Muhammad • Had a knowledge of the history of Arabs • A’isha knew the about the past of the Arabs which made her able to relate and understand the Arabs. Her memory was outstanding which is demonstrated through her ability to remember 2000 Hadiths (recorded teaching of Muhammad outside the Quran). • Aisha is usually described as Muhammad's favorite wife, and it was in her company that Muhammad reportedly received the most revelations. • Revelation is when Allah is revealed. • Aisha could memorise the whole Quran . Which showed her knowledge and understanding of Islam. • Aisha was able to speak with authority about issues concerning the Islamic religion due to her knowing first-hand about the hadiths and Quran so she was well-respected by the community Aisha Bint Abu-Bakr Her contributions to the recording of the Hadiths “Hadith” ‘What was transmitted on the authority of the Prophet, his deeds and sayings’ Includes narratives of the life of Muhammad and about the companions (Sahabah), including Aisha. Aishah lived on almost fifty years after the passing away of the Prophet. She had been his wife for a decade. Much of this time was spent in learning and acquiring knowledge of the two most important sources of God's guidance, the Quran and the Sunnah of His Prophet. Aishah was one of three wives (the other two being Hafsah and Umm Salamah) who memorised the Revelation. Like Hafsah, she had her own script of the Quran written after the Prophet had died. Aisha important source for Hadith writers, verifying accuracy. So far as the hadith or sayings of the Prophet is concerned, Aishah is one of four persons (the others being Abu Hurayrah, Abdullah ibn Umar, and Anas ibn Malik) who transmitted more than two thousand sayings. Many of these pertain to some of the most intimate aspects of personal behavior which only someone in Aishah's position could have learnt. What is most important is that her knowledge of hadith was passed on in written form by at least three persons including her nephew Urwah who became one of the greatest scholars among the generation after the Companions. Many of the learned companions of the Prophet and their followers benefitted from Aishah's knowledge. Abu Musa al-Ashari once said: "If we companions of the Messenger of God had any difficulty on a matter, we asked Aishah about it." Transmitted more than 2000 Hadiths Aisha aided by her sharp, accurate memory, her intelligence and her great ability to learn quickly, enabled her to report a great number of hadiths (around 2000). She is considered one of the great four, (Abu Hurairah, Abdullah Ibn Omar, Anas Ibn Malik and Aisha Bint Abu Bakr) who contributed to the creation of the Hadith. She would ask the Prophet for peace and blessings to be upon him, so she could overcome anything she found unclear and could pass on to all Muslims. Meant that a woman was recorded in the isnad (chain of authorities via which the Hadith were handed down) The life of Aishah is proof that a woman can be far more learned than men and that she can be the teacher of scholars and experts. Her life is also proof that a woman can exert influence over men and women and provide them with inspiration and leadership. Her life is also proof that the same woman can be totally feminine and be a source of pleasure, joy and comfort to her husband. Narrated the Hadith to students Aishah not only possessed great knowledge but took an active part in education and social reform. As a teacher she had a clear and persuasive manner of speech and her power of oratory has been described in superlative terms by al-Ahnaf who said: "I have heard speeches of Abu Bakr and Umar, Uthman and Ali and the Khulafa up to this day, but I have not heard speech more persuasive and more beautiful from the mouth of any person than from the mouth of Aishah." She met vigorous standards of piety, morality and scholarship and so her scholarship and the stories of her and her companions have survived in the respected Hadiths. Men and women came from far and wide to benefit from her knowledge. The number of women is said to have been greater than that of men. Besides answering enquiries, she took boys and girls, some of them orphans, into her custody and trained them under her care and guidance. This was in addition to her relatives who received instruction from her. Her house thus became a school and an academy. Preserved the tradition She is regarded by scholars as one of the trustworthy narrators of hadith and is said to have acted as Aishah's secretary receiving and replying to letters addressed to her. The example of Aishah in promoting education and in particular the education of Muslim women in the laws and teachings of Islam is one which needs to be followed. Reference http://www.alim.org/library/biography/compani on/content/BIO/60/Aishah%20bint%20Abi%20B akr Aisha’s Scholarship • Aisha was brought up by her knowledgeable father • She had a remarkable memory • Aisha’s ability to discuss issues with the prophet reflected her thirst for knowledge and her understanding of the world. • Aisha began her scholarship at the death of Muhammad • Aisha’s depth and breadth of scholarship surpassed most scholars. • The prophet said “If knowledge of all men and all Mothers of Believers is gathered at one place, the knowledge of Aisha would be vaster’ • Aisha’s work is used as a guide for Muslims today. A’isha Bint Abu-Bakr Political Life Political Life After the death of Muhammad, Abu Bakr became the first political leader of Islamic community, ruled for two years. A first man to hold the position of Caliph or political successor to Muhammad, as Muhammad had no heirs and designated no other political leader before his death. Political Life Marriage to Muhammad was political – to establish traditional family ties Favourite wife and the daughter of Muhammad’s favourite male friend – Abu Bakr Shi’a believe Ali should have been chosen to succeed Muhammad. Sunni - the community chose Abu Bakr in accordance with Muhammad’s wishes. Political Life A’isha supported Abu Bakr and raised an army against Ali after Umar’s death. Shi’a believe that in opposing Ali she committed a grievous sin. Lead thousand in battle prodding them on with her speeches and poetry Ali captured A’isha but didn’t harm her. She saw the incident as a great mistake. Active in her social reform. Took boys and girls under her care. Her home became and academy. Some of her students became great scholars. Promoted the education of Muslim women. She lived simply often going hungry giving to those more needy.