Umm Al-Fadil (Lubabah bint Al-Harith) - Victories and Defeats
Lady Knights

Kaan Ya Makaan, Fee Qadeem Al-Zamaan…
There was a Place, in Times of Old…

Called Mecca where a busy matron was taking a well-deserved break. Umm Al-Fadil, for such was the matron's name, was resting by the well of Zamzam, Mecca's most famous and ancient well. Nearby, a liegeman of her husband's, named Abu Rafi', was busily carving assorted wooden cups for those who wished to partake of the rich mineral waters of Zamzam.

As the two busily worked and rested by turns, a group of men led by Abu Lahab came and sat near the tent housing the well of Zamzam. The men began morosely discussing the recent defeat of the army that the pagan people of Mecca had sent against the Muslim people of Al-Madinah.

Umm Al-Fadil and Abu Rafi' were both Muslims so they were relieved and gladdened by the news they overheard regarding the defeat of the invasion force. It had marched on Al-Madinah with the unabashed intent of slaughtering all the Muslims there, whether men, women or children.

One of the warriors who had been with the invasion force, Abu Sufyan, passed by the group of chattering men and was immediately called over by Abu Lahab, "O' son of my brother, come and tell me what news you have!"

Abu Sufyan shuffled over and joined the men. In a sad and unhappy voice he started telling everyone about the crushing defeat their army had suffered, "By god, as soon as we met their army, we gave them our shoulders so that they may strike us down at their leisure and capture us at their convenience. Though, by god, I could not fault our men. We faced tall white men riding bright horses fighting with our enemy, they didn't even seem to leave marks on the ground."

Abu Rafi' upon hearing Abu Sufyan's words lifted a corner of the tent and called out helpfully, "Those were, by God, the angels!"

Abu Lahab couldn't abide the sight of the Muslim man's bright face. He leapt up and struck Abu Rafi' across the face as hard as he could. Abu Rafi' fell back in shock and pain, then he angrily leapt to his feet and tackled Abu Lahab.

Unfortunately for Abu Rafi', who was a slim man of average height, Abu Lahab was tall, strong, and an adept fighter. With laughable ease, Abu Lahab picked up Abu Rafi' then slammed him down onto the ground with a resounding thump. He then knelt on Abu Rafi' and viciously pummeled him.

Umm Al-Fadil watched in shock as the fight started, but when Abu Lahab pinned Abu Rafi' to the ground and began beating him she sprang to her feet looking desperately around hoping to find some way to end the fight and come to the rescue of Abu Rafi'. Suddenly, Umm Al-Fadil's eyes locked onto one of the poles supporting the tent erected over the well of Zamzam. She hurriedly grabbed the tent pole, wrenched it free and without pause brought it crashing down on Abu Lahab's head with a sickening crunch as she yelled, "You thought he would be easy prey in the absence of his master?!"

Abu Lahab keeled over like a felled tree, a bleeding dent clearly visible on his head where Umm Al-Fadil had struck him. After a stunned moment, both men rose unsteadily to their feet. Abu Rafi' walked over to stand by Umm Al-Fadil who was still gripping the tent pole and shooting ferocious looks at Abu Lahab.

Without a word to anyone, and carefully looking away from the angry woman brandishing the tent pole, Abu Lahab slunk away cringing in shame. To be defeated so publicly and humiliatingly, and by a woman no less, was more than his overweening pride could take. Umm Al-Fadil lowered the tent pole with a satisfied nod as she watched Abu Lahab's rapid retreat. With a disdainful sniff, the matron returned to her work accompanied by her husband's grateful, and somewhat bruised, liegeman.

*Written by © 2012. Care to read or leave Comments?

  1. Names, Translations and Aliases:
    • Abu Lahab: أبو لهب.
    • Abu Sufyan: أبو سفيان بن حرب
    • Abu Rafi': أبو رافع.
    • Umm Al-Fadil aka Lubabah bint Al-Harith: أم الفضل لُبابة بنت الحارث بن حَزْن الهلالية.

  1. Al-Suhaibani, A. (2004 AD, 1425 H). صور من سير الصحابيات [Brief Biographies of Lady Contemporaries]. Riyadh: Dar Aalam Al-Kutub Publishing and Distributing. Page 177-181.
  2. Halbi, M. (2006 AD, 1427 H). المائة الأوائل من صحابيات الرسول [The Hundred First Lady Contemporaries of the Messenger] (2nd Ed). Beirut: Dar El-Marefah Publishing & Distributing. Page 27-33.

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