There was no motivation for deception and double dealing in Makkah. Islam was helpless, harried and harassed there. Moreover, none had the power to turn the tide in Makkah, nor could anyone think of gaining any worldly advantage by accepting Islam. Giving one’s faith to Islam meant one was prepared to set oneself at odds with the whole of Makkah and to risk one’s life. Only one venturesome in spirit and having the courage of convictions could bear to play with the fire of hostility raging in the hearts of Islam’s enemies, only a man of mettle could take a chance with his life and property, future and prosperity. In Makkah, there were not two powers equally poised; the heathens were brought out forcefully by the Qur'an in its elegant style.
“And remember, when ye were few and reckoned feeble in the land, and were in fear lest men should extirpate you.”
When Islam found a new safe haven in Madina and the Prophet peace be and blessings upon him and his companions were blessed with peace and stability, Islam began to prosper. It brought into existence a new society, a new brotherhood of men united by the consciousness of a common outlook in life and common aspirations as expressed by the Islamic principles. The dazzling spectacle of an idealistic commonwealth meant a complete break with the past for the change was so radical so as to induce the fainthearted to sail under false colors. This was quite logical or rather based on the natural instincts of those who could not cope with the revolutionary movement. Also, hypocrisy shows up its mettle only where two contending powers or principles are pitted against each other, for the indecisive and the spineless are always wavering, swinging from one end to another. They are always of two minds, hesitant, and never able to take a final decision. Often they hang together with one of the two contenders, profess loyalty and try to go along with it, but their self‐solicitude and vested interests do not permit them to cling on and sacrifice and endure with it. The fear that the other party might recover its strength someday does not elude them, nor are they ever able to make a total break with their past for the sake of new ideas or ideals. This is a delicate state of disloyalty or infirmity of purpose portrayed graphically by the Qur’an as follows:
“And among the mankind is he who worshipeth Allah upon a narrow marge so that if good befalleth him, he is content therewith, but if a trial befalleth him, he falleth away utterly. He loseth both the world and the hereafter. That is the sheer loss.” [Qur'an 22:11]
The distinctive trait of this group is delineated in another verse which says:
“Swaying between this (and that), (belonging) neither to these nor to those.” [Qur'an 8:26].
The leader of the hypocrites, drawn from the ranks of Aus and Khazraj as well as the Jews of Madinah, was Abdullah b. Ubayy b. Sal’ul. Exhausted by the battle of Buath that was fought between the Aus and Khazraj around five years before the arrival of the Prophet peace be and blessings upon him of Allah in Madinah, both these tribes had agreed to recognize ‘Abdullah b. Ubayy as their leader. By the time Islam came to gain adherents in Madinah, preparations were already being made to formally crown him as the king of the city. When he saw that the people were being won over by Islam, quickly and in large numbers at that, he became so annoyed that his resentment grew to torture his mind.
Ibn Hisham writes: “When the Prophet peace be and blessings upon him came to Madina the leader there was ‘Abdullah b. Ubayy Salul al‐‘Aufi. None of his own people contested his authority and Aus and Khazraj never rallied to any one man before Islam as they did to him. ‘Abdullah b. Ubayy’s people had made a sort of jeweled diadem to crown him and make him their king when Allah sent His Prophet peace be and blessings upon him to them. So when his people deserted him in favor of Islam, he was filled with enmity realizing that the Prophet peace be and blessings upon him had deprived him of his kingship. However, when he saw that his people were determined to go over the fold of Islam, he did too, though unwillingly, retaining his enmity and dissimulation. (Ibn Hisham, Vol. I, pp. 277‐8).
All those persons who had a suppressed desire concealed in their hearts or were ambitious for prestige, power or authority, felt cut to the heart at the success of religion that welded the Muhaajirun and the Ansaar as two bodies with one soul. A religion that inspired them with a dedication to the Prophet peace be and blessings upon him which was even more intense than one had for one’s own father, son and wife.
Hatred and ill will against the Prophet peace be and blessings upon him filled their hearts and they started hatching up plots against Muslims.
This was how a coalition of the double‐faced discontented ones came into existence within the Islamic world who were in reality worthless and just a parcel of the Muslim society. People no better than a lowly but dangerous snake in the grass that Muslims had to be even more careful with than to Allah’s openly acknowledged enemies.
This is why the Qur’an repeatedly exposes their hypocrisy and warns against their concealed designs. Their surreptitious intrigues continued to undermine the stability of the Islamic society and hence the works on the life of the Prophet peace be and blessings upon him cannot do otherwise than divulge their hidden agenda and activities.