Baqi means the land in which the roots of different trees are embedded, Gharqad is the name of a thorny tree (Boxthorn) which were abundant in Baqi. Hence the cemetery also came to be known as Baqi al-Gharqad.
This cemetary is located near Masjid e Nabawi. Sahabahs and relatives of Prophet SAW are buried. The first person to be buried in al-Baqi was As’ad Bin Zararah (may Allah be pleased with him), an Ansari companion who died soon after the Prophet ‘s (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) migration to Madinah. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) chose the spot to be a cemetery. The first of the Muhajirun (Emigrants) to be buried there was Uthman bin Mazoun who died shortly after the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) returned from the battle of Badr
Quba is the place on the outskirts of Madinah where the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him), accompanied by Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) arrived and first stayed after emigrating from Makkah. They arrived on Monday 12th Rab’i al-Awwal, fourteen years after Prophethood and this date marks the beginning of the Islamic calendar (Hijra), (16th July 622 CE). A masjid was established here by the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him), the first to be built in Islam.
The virtue of Masjid Qubas is mentioned in the following Quranic verse in Surah Taubah: “…certainly a masjid founded on piety from the very first day is more deserving that you should stand in it…” [9:108]
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) said: “He who purifies himself at his home and comes to Masjid Quba and offers two rakats therein, will be rewarded the reward of an Umrah (lesser pilgrimage).” [Sunan ibn Majah]
This is Masjid Qiblatain (Mosque of the Two Qiblas). It is historically important to Muslims as this is where in Rajjab 2 AH the revelation of the Quran came to change the direction of the Qibla from Bait-al-Maqdis in Jerusalem to the Ka’bah in Makkah.
During his time in Makkah, the Prophet Muhammed (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) used to pray towards Bait-al-Maqdis, with the Ka’bah in front of him. When he migrated to Madinah, he prayed towards Jerusalem for 16 months, but he hoped it would be changed to the Ka’bah.
During Dhuhr prayer (or it was said that it was Asar), the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) had led his Companions when he was commanded to face towards the Ka’bah by the following revelation in the Quran in Surah al-Baqarah: “Verily, We have seen the turning of your (Muhammed’s) face towards the heaven. Surely, We shall turn you to a Qiblah (prayer direction) that shall please you, so turn your face in the direction of Al-Masjid Al-Haram (at Makkah). And wheresoever you people are, turn your faces (in prayer) in that direction.” [2:144 ]
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) turned around towards the Ka’bah and the Sahabah copied out of obedience. Thus the Ka’bah became the new Qibla of the Muslims for all time to come.
The Seven Mosques
The largest of the seven mosques is Al-Fath on a hilltop near the western side of Sal’ mountain. It was built when Umar ibn Abd Al-Aziz was governor of Madinah in the years 87 to 93 after Hijrah (705 CE to 711 CE). It was rebuilt in 575 H (1179 CE). It was then rebuilt again during the reign of the Ottoman Sultan Abd Al-Majid I in 1851.
The Salman Al-Farisi Mosque is located south of Al-Fath Mosque, 20 meters from the base of Sal’ mountain. It is named after Salman, the companion of the Prophet (peace be upon him) who recommended digging a trench to fortify the city from an invasion. It has one hall at 7 meters long and 2 meters wide. It was also built while Umar ibn Abd Al-Aziz was governor of Madinah. In 575 H (1179 CE) it was rebuilt on the orders of minister Said Al-Deen Abu Al-Haija. It was rebuilt again during the reign of the Ottoman Sultan Abd Al-Majid I.
The Abu Bakr Al-Siddeeq Mosque is 15 meters to the southwest of Salman Al-Farisi Mosque. It was reported that Abu Bakr, when he was caliph, prayed Eid prayer there. This is why it was named after him. It was also reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) prayed the Eid prayer there.
The Umar ibn Al-Khattab Mosque is 10 meters to the south of Abu Bakr Mosque, opposite Al-Ghamamah mosque and close to the Prophet’s Mosque. There is not much historical detail about the mosque, but there is speculation that it could be the ancient mosque at Al-Durrah place where Umar may have prayed during his reign as caliph. This would explain why it was named after him. It has an open yard and is eight steps above the ground. Its structure is similar to Al-Fath Mosque, which indicates that the two structures may have been built and renovated together.
The Ali ibn Abi Talib Mosque is east of Fatimah Mosque on a high rectangular hilltop. It is 8.5 meters long and 6.5 meters wide. It has one small step. It is likely to have been built and renovated with Al-Fath Mosque.
The Fatimah Al-Zahra Mosque is known as Mus’ad ibn Mo’az Mosque. It is the smallest of the group and measures 4 meters by 3 meters. It has one small step. It has a similar structure to other mosques in the area and may have been built during the Ottoman era, most likely during the reign of Sultan Abd Al-Majid I in 1851.
Ground of Uhud
This is a section of Mount Uhud, in front of which the second battle in Islam (the Battle of Uhud) took place in 3 AH. Of this mountain the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) declared, “This mountain loves us and we love it.” [Muslim]
After the humiliating defeat in the Battle of Badr a year earlier, the Quraysh of Makkah made preparations to muster a great army to fight the Muslims again and take revenge. They assembled an army of 3000 soldiers with 300 camels, 200 horses and 700 coats of mail. Wives and daughters of slained chiefs in Badr accompanied the army to see with their own eyes the spectacle of the killers being killed. Hind, the daughter of Utbah was the leader of the womens section and her husband Abu Sufyan was the commander-in-chief of the Makkan army. Both were not Muslims at the time but bitter enemies of Islam. The left and right flanks were commanded by Ikrimah ibn Abi Jahl and Khalid bin Waleed respectively. Amr ibn al-As was named the commander of cavalry and his task was to co-ordinate attack between the cavalry wings. (All three subsequently became Muslims and become great generals of Islam).
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