Dissolution of Idol Worship

it is reported that one day the quraysh tribe convened at a place called nakhlah to celebrate the day of the goddess al `uzza. four qurayshis failed to show up and participate in this sacrament: namely, zayd ibn `amr, `uthman ibn al huwayrith, `ubayd allah ibn jahsh and waraqah ibn nawfal. they are reported to have addressed one another in these words, "mark well these words! by god, the people are unworthy and surely misguided. as for us, we shall circumambulate no stone which neither hears nor sees, which is capable of neither harm nor good and on which the blood of sacrifice runs. o people, seek for yourselves a religion other than this!" waraqah joined christianity, and it is reported that he translated into arabic some of the contents of the evangels. `ubayd allah ibn jahsh remained a man without religion until he joined islam and emigrated with his fellow muslims to abyssinia. there it is reported that he joined christianity and died a christian. his wife umm habibah, daughter of abu sufyan, remained a muslim. she returned to madinah and became one of the wives of the prophet and a "mother of the faithful”[title given to each of the wives of the prophet.]. as for zayd ibn `amr, he separated himself from his wife and from his uncle al khattab, lived for a while in al sham and `iraq and returned to arabia without ever joining either judaism or christianity. he also separated himself from makkan religion and avoided the idols. leaning on the walls of the ka'bah he used to pray, "o god! if i knew in which form you preferred to be worshipped, i would surely worship you in that form." finally, as for `uthman ibn al huwayrith, a relative of khadijah, he traveled to byzantium, became a christian and, for some time, achieved a position of eminence in the imperial court. it is said that he sought to subjugate makkah to byzantium and to get himself appointed as the emperor's viceroy. the makkans finally banished him from makkah. he joined the ghassanis in al sham. from there he sought to cut off the trade route of makkah, but the makkans undid his schemes by sending all sorts of gifts to the ghassani court. there, ibn al huwayrith died by being poisoned.

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