The Lapsed Umrah
One of the conditions of the Peace Treaty of Hudaybiya was that the Muslims would be permitted to visit Makkah the following year. They would be allowed to stay there for three days to carry out their religious duties.

After a year had passed, the Holy Prophet (S) declared that the Muslims should prepare for the Umrah, the minor Hajj. The announcement was met with great joy, especially by the Muhajirs, who had not seen their relatives and home town in seven years. 2,000 Muslims prepared to make the journey.

The Holy Prophet (S) put on his Ehram in the mosque and the others followed him. Then the Muslims proceeded to Makkah reciting the Talbiyyah (Labbayk, Allahumma Labbayk - Here I am, my Lord, here I am). They took with them 80 camels for sacrifice. The sight of this caravan, which possessed so much majesty and dignity, made many idolaters inclined towards Islam. As a result, many became Muslims.

One of the conditions of the treaty was that, when entering Makkah, the Muslims should be unarmed except for a single traveler's sword. The Holy Prophet (S) knew that this made them vulnerable to attack from the Quraish, whom he did not trust. Therefore, he sent 200 well armed men in a valley near Makkah and to wait there for his arrival.

When the Quraish learnt of this action of the Holy Prophet (S) they realized that it was useless to plan any surprise attacks on the Muslims. They therefore opened the gates of Makkah and vacated the city for the nearby mountains and hills. From here, they could observe all their activities of the Muslims during their three days' stay.

The Holy Prophet (S) entered Makkah with the Muslims and the sound of "Labbayk" echoed throughout the city, filling the Makkans with awe. He performed Tawaf of the Holy Ka'aba while mounted on his camel.

At this stage he ordered that the Muslims join him in saying:
"There is no god but Allah. He is One and Matchless. He has acted according to his promise (He had promised that the Muslims would visit the Holy Ka'aba soon). He helped His servant. He raised the army of One God to the highest rank and condemned the armies of the idol worshippers to loneliness".
On that day all the centres of pilgrimage and the places where ceremonies of Umrah are performed, including Masjidul Haraam, the Holy Ka'aba and the hills of Safa and Marwah were under the control of the Muslims.

Seeing the Muslims perform their sacred rites at these places made a great impact on the leaders of the Quraish, and now they finally believed that this mighty religion and its leader could never be stopped.

The time for noon prayers arrived. The Holy Prophet (S) ordered Bilal to recite the Adhan. Bilal climbed onto the roof of the Holy Ka'aba, and loudly announced the call to prayer. Every word was like an arrow in the hearts of the listening Quraish. One of them hid his face in his handkerchief as he heard Bilal's recitation. He could not bear to hear the open declaration of the Oneness of Allah and the Prophethood of Muhammad (S) which had once been the greatest crime according to the disbelievers of Quraish.

Afterwards, the Holy Prophet (S) led the Muslims in performing Sa'i between the hills of Safa and Marwah. The hypocrites and idolaters had spread the rumor that the Muslims had become weak due to the poor climate in Madinah. To show them that they were wrong, the Holy Prophet (S) did "Harwalah" during part of the Sa'i, and the Muslims followed him. Harwalah is a type of quick walking, just short of running.

Then the Muslims sacrificed their camels and came out of the state of Ehram and had their hair cut. The Holy Prophet (S) then ordered that 200 Muslims should proceed to the valley where the Muslim soldiers were camped, to replace them so that they could come and perform their Umrah.

The rites and ceremonies of Umrah came to an end. The Muhajirs went to their homes to meet their relatives. They also invited some Ansar to their homes to return some of the hospitality that the Ansar had shown them on their arrival in Madinah.

After three days the Holy Prophet (S) gave the order for the Muslims to leave Makkah for Madinah. Before he left, he received a proposal of marriage from a Quraish woman Maimoona, who was the sister-in-law of Abbas, the uncle of the Holy Prophet (S). He accepted this proposal and married her in Makkah.

The short visit of the Muslims and the glory of Islam had made a deep impression on the minds of the citizens of Makkah. Many of them were left with a longing to learn more about the religion and the conduct of the Muslims had won a greater victory than any war.
The Holy Qur'an says:
"Allah made the dream of His messenger come true for a genuine purpose. If Allah wills, you (believers) will enter the Sacred Mosque in security with your heads shaved, nails cut and without any fears in your heart".     Surae Fat'h, 48:27
  1. How long did the Holy Prophet (S) wait after the signing of the Peace Treaty of Hudaybiya before going to Makkah to perform Hajj and why?
  2. What is Talbiyyah, what does it mean and when is it recited?
  3. Why did the Holy Prophet (S) place 200 well armed men near Makkah?
  4. What is Harwalah, when is it performed and why was it performed?
  5. How had the Muslims won a greater victory at this time than in any war?