We continue reading some more characteristics of Asma bint Abu Bakr (ra).
Steadfastness in Religion
When Asma (ra) migrated to Madina, her mother Qutalyah bint Abdul Uzza came for a visit bringing along some gifts. Her mother being an idolatress, Asma (ra) did not admit her into the house or accepted her gifts until she asked the Prophet (saw) about relations with the idolaters. The Prophet (saw) told her to welcome her mother and accept her gifts.
It was her taqwa that made her place Allah (swt) and His commandments above everything else. Unless she had sort the clarification on the matter she did not proceed on her own. “And whosoever honours the Symbols of Allah, then it is truly from the piety of the heart,” (22:32).
Lessons to draw: Seek knowledge of the religion and protect yourself and your families from committing that which might be displeasing to Allah (swt). Be conscious of your earning, your food, your clothing, and the kind of people you hang around. Put Allah (swt) before everything else.
Perseverance and Generosity
Life for Asma (ra) wasn’t easy. Her husband Zubair (ra) neither had money nor property. Asma (ra) would do house chores as well as look after her husband’s mare. Tending to the mare was the most difficult of all jobs. When she complained to her father, he advised her to be patient.
When Allah (swt) improved their financial condition, Asma (ra) instead of increasing her living status increased her charity. She was a woman not blinded by the attractions of this world. She was focused on the hereafter and that which pleased Allah (swt). Advising her children of benevolence, she said, “Spend, give sadaqah and charity and do not wait for abundance.”
Lessons to draw: Many women complain of not having enough to give. There are many simple ways of contributing in the way of Allah (swt), and it does not always involve money. One can contribute in the way of Allah (swt) by giving their time, talent, special skills or even provision. Prepare an extra meal one day and feed an orphan child. Volunteer to teach Qur’an, a du’a or even academic studies to one of your domestic help’s children.
Haya and Modesty
One day Asma (ra) was walking home with a load of dates on her head. Upon seeing her, the Prophet (saw) signalled his camel to sit down so that Asma (ra) could climb. But Asma (ra) refused and continued to walk. There were other men with the Prophet of Allah (saw), and Asma (ra) did not find it appropriate to be a lone woman in a crowd of men.
Once her son, al-Mundhir, sent her an elegant dress from Iraq but Asma (ra) refused to take it. Her son, knowing his mother, contested that it was not of a transparent material. Asma (ra) replied that it was not but it was of tight-fitting and revealed the contours of the body.
Lessons to draw: We might spend a fortune in looking elegant and distinguished but does our clothing cover all the parameters of haya? Let us dress up to please Allah (swt).
Asma (ra) instilled in her children religious values and instructed them to always stand up for the truth. She transferred her love for charity in them and raised them upon best characteristics. After her husband divorced her, Asma (ra) started living with her son Abdullah ibn az-Zubair (ra). Raised by his mother, Abdullah (ra) grew up to be prudent intellectual and a master archer.
Lessons to draw: Connect your children to Allah (swt) because when the hearts are empty they would take in anything that Shaitan leads them to. Teach the Seerah of the Prophet (saw), and his du’as. Tell them about shirk and how not to depend on or fear anyone besides Allah (swt).
(Adapted from the book: Seerat e Sahabiyat k Darakshan Pehlu by and the lectures of Dr. Farhat Hashmi: Seerat e Sahabiyat)