This topic was delivered by Ustadha Thameena Khan in Manchester through Quba Initiative on 7th September 2013.

In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful and Compassionate

All praise to Allah, Lord of the Worlds. And salutations and greetings upon our Master Muhammad and upon his family and companions.

I intend to study and teach, take and give a reminder, take and give benefit, take and give advantage, to encourage the holding fast to the book of Allah and the way of his messenger, and calling to guidance and directing towards good hoping for the countenance of Allah and His pleasure, proximity and reward, transcendent is He.

Allah (Exalted is He) prepares people for a path and you have to respond to that. This event is on the 1st of Dhu’l Qa’dah, the first of the sacred consecutive months. The first of the 3 sacred months (Dhu’l Qa’dah, Dhu’l Hijjah and Muharram).

The book of Allah is the greatest dhikr (remembrance). Everything else comes after. It wouldn’t make sense to start without Sayyidah Hafsa bint Umar ibn al Khattab (may Allah be pleased with them). During their lifetime, lots of hufaaz (people who have memorised the Qur’an) passed away. During the khilafa (caliphate) of Sayyidina Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him), Sayyidina Umar ibn al Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) suggested compiling the Qur’an because the hufaaz (people who have memorised the Qur’an) are dying. He eventually agreed and they embarked upon this.

During the caliphate of Sayyidina Umar ibn al Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him), he had the only copy. On his death, who did he give this only copy to? His daughter. The only copy that existed. She is called Harisa tul Qur’an; the one who protected the Qur’an.

Imam Dhahabi said, “She was a woman who fasted, stood up in prayer, feared and was conscious of God, is from the women of Paradise, is from the greatest students of the madrasa of RasulAllah and his wife.” May Allah be pleased with her.
She memorised 60 hadith (Prophetic Traditions) and is considered to be from the scholars of her time; out of the men and women. She was 1 of 3 or 1 of 5 (according to some narrations) who memorised the Qur’an from the wives of RasulAllah (may Allah be pleased with them all). The other two are Sayyidah Aisha and Sayyidah Umm Salama (may Allah be pleased with them). She was the fourth wife of RasulAllah (peace and blessings be upon him).

Her greatness lies in the greatness of her father. Sayyidina Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) took time out for his children. He taught his children how to read and write. It was said about him that a donkey would sooner become Muslim before he would meaning that he wouldn’t. The little he knew about Islam, he didn’t like it. He produced a daughter like Sayyidah Hafsa who was not only a protector and hufaaz (memoriser of the Qur’an) but she could read and write. She was also brave. If Sayyidina Umar al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) took somebody on, you had no chance. His yaqin (certitude) was the same way. This is why RasulAllah (peace and blessings be upon him) said Shaytan takes the opposite way from his path. He doesn’t bother with this man; he’s even scared of his shadow. His daughter takes this. May Allah be pleased with them both.

She (may Allah be pleased with her) was married before to Khunais who dies after the Battle of Badr from injuries he procured. She is 18.

When her father dies, he doesn’t say give the Qur’an to some soldier or wrestler. He gives it to his daughter. She was given this because he knew she would guard it with her life. The only person before Sayyidina Uthman ibn Affan’s time to have it was her. We owe it to her. What do we take? Not only did she physically protect it but she committed it to memory. She used to open her house up for the study of the Qur’an. Everyone knew the Qur’an was in her house. It was open for people to sit down and learn. Could anybody say they are “Harisa tul Qur’an”? How much do we actually protect and preserve? This is a legacy.

When a woman believes in something, she gives her life to it. She does. See a mother. What if we had that for the message of Allah (Exalted is He) and the traditions of RasulAllah (peace and blessings be upon him)? At least be protectors. Don’t leave it on the shelves for Ramadan. We need to stop this now. It has gone on for too long. Knowledge goes away when hearts are not attached. Now, they are going away so fast. We have to memorise and act upon it. Have ta’dheem (reverence) of the Qur’an and RasulAllah (peace and blessings be upon him). He was the walking Qur’an. She (may Allah be pleased with her) was protecting it; physically and by memory. Only at the time of Sayyidina Uthman it is recopied. We should think that there was a woman behind it. Know that the Lord of the women in that time is the same Lord of the women in our time. The only difference is sincerity. He can give. We should be proud that she is our mother and we should know it. May Allah be pleased with her.

Sayyidina Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) was not anti-women. He was a supporter. During his khilafa (caliphate), he put Sayyidah Shifa as the one who runs the marketplace. She was running the whole city centre. A woman. On so many occasions he takes duroos (lessons) from elderly women. He always listened. May Allah be pleased with him. We need to revive this legacy.

Allah (Exalted is He) is ultimately the One who preserves. The point is who He chooses, it is whether we will be with them or not. He uses special people. We need to know the preservers and why them. The Prophets were the best of the best. Allah (Exalted is He) is able to guide as He wills, He doesn’t need anybody but He chose vehicles. We either follow in their footsteps or not.

Part 2 to follow.

Any mistakes, errors or misinterpretations of words are from me. Please correct me when you spot any mistakes.