QUNUT: From Najd to the Balkans




Assalamu alaikum WRWB,

HADITH-6 CLASS-Fiqh-Religious Law

Anas Ibn Malik (RA) said the prophet (SAW) performed Qunut (prayed) against those that killed the Qur'anic memorizers (RA) and he persisted with the
prayers for one month saying: "O Allah! Curse (the tribes of) Ri'ali, Zakwan, Ussayyata ..." . (Bukhari & Muslim).

In the fourth year after hijrah, the prophet (SAW) sent a company out of the Ahl-Suffah, all of who were also Qur'anic memorizers/reciters, numbering seventy persons to preach to the unbelievers of Najd (Central Arabia) who had a truce with the prophet. When the expedition reached the well of Ma'unata, the Najdi tribes of Ri'ala, Zakwan and Usayyata overpowered and killed all of the huffaz except, in one narration, Kaab Ibn Zayd Al-Ansari.

That group was said to be the most humble and most knowledgeable of the Qur'anic reciters among the prophet's companions. Anas Ibn Malik reported that he had never seen the prophet so annoyed about anything as at that moment. The prophet prayed that Allah curse these tribes. He is said to have performed the Qunut in each of the five daily prayers, following rising up from ruku'u and the declaration "Allah hears he who praises Him". He has also been reported to have performed Qunut, praying for the weak believers left in Makkah upon rising from ruku'u. Although, most narrations, including the hadith above, said the prophet performed the Qunut for one month, Abu Ja'afar (RA) reported that the prophet (SAW) actually never stopped doing Qunut in the morning prayers until the end of his life. While cursing these Najdi tribes, Mudhara, Ri'ala, etc., the prophet actually prayed that Allah endow them with the worst years (of drought) similar to the years of Yusuf (AS).

It has been reported from the prophet that the best of prayers are the longest i.e. with the Qunut and that the Qunut can also precede the ruku'u. Although the above-described Qunut recited is allowed, he is reported to have performed another type silently. Praying silently is probably also preferred by Allah (SWT) as where Zakariya (AS) prayed for an heir as explained by some Qur'anic commentators. Qunut in Witr has also been reported and according to Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, it should also succeed the ruku'u, although no problem if done before it. Other preferred statements for the Qunut have also been narrated from the prophet. This second paragraph explains the basis for the differences in Qunut among the Mazaahib like among Nigerians, mostly Malikis, it is better known in Fajr prayer.

What is clear is that the prophet (SAW) performed Qunut when atrocities were committed against the Ummah. Similarly, his rightly guided caliphs: Abubakar (RA) and Umar (RA) also performed it during difficult times or when catastrophes befell the Ummah. By all standards, what is happening lately in the Balkans remains a disaster; initially in Bosnia-Herzegovina and now in Kosova-Albania-Macedonia, mostly perpetuated by the Serbs. Although,  orthodox and catholic churches have sizable followers, the Muslims remain the predominant group. Furthermore, the atrocities largely target the Muslims causing enormous human misery and mass exodus with over 400,000 ethnic Albanians already fleeing the Serbian hostilities. Certainly, when the history of the worst human tragedies of this century is written, the Balkans would take its appropriate place alongside the World War genocides. There are certain peculiarities to the Balkans crises, as Sir Donald Acheson puts it, during the Bosnia-Herzegovina crises, never before in warfare has systematic rape become a state policy against muslim women, as in that conflict. Rape is not unknown to war but the degree and magnitude it assumed defied all imaginations. That was the first against the muslim ummah.

Secondly, all reports of immigrants reaching the refugee camps, thus far, point to the sparseness of able bodied young men, presumably killed by the invading serbs. It is however not the first time that believers have suffered such losses for Allah (SWT) said:

"And remember We delivered you from the people of pharaoh: they set you hard tasks and chastisement, slaughtered your sons and let your women live; therein was a tremendous trial from your lord". (2:49)

The number of men missing, displaced or killed is as yet unknown; but certainly makes this one of the worst peculiarities of the Kosovo crises. While humanitarian aid in cash and kind is still desired against our suffering brothers and sisters in Kosovo; prayers in the form of QUNUT in mosques and homes are still needed and advocated for the Balkans
tribes, like the prophet performed it against the Najd tribes. May Allah in his infinite mercy remove the sufferings from the Kosovo muslims-amen