We remained in that condition for fifty nights. As regards my two fellows, they remained in their houses and kept on weeping, but I was the youngest of them and the firmest of them, so I used to go out and witness the prayers along with the Muslims and roam about in the markets, but none would talk to me, and I would come to the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him, and greet him while he was sitting in his gathering after the prayer, and I would wonder whether the Prophet, peace and blessing be upon him, did move his lips in return to my greetings or not. Then, I would offer my prayer near to him and look at him stealthily. When I was busy with my prayer, he would turn his face towards me, but when I turned my face to him, he would turn his face away from me. When this harsh attitude of the people lasted long, I walked till I scaled the wall of the garden of Abu Qataadah who was my cousin and dearest person to me, and I offered my greetings to him. By Allaah, he did not return my greetings. I said, 'O Abu Qataadah! I beseech you by Allaah! Do you know that I love Allaah and His Messenger?' He kept quiet. I asked him again, beseeching him by Allaah, but he remained silent. Then I asked him again in the Name of Allaah. He said, "Allaah and His Messenger know it better.' Thereupon, my eyes flowed with tears and I returned and jumped over the wall." Ka‘b added, "While I was walking in the market of Medina, suddenly I saw a Nabati (i.e. a Christian farmer) from the Nabatis of Sham who came to sell his grains in Medina, saying, 'Who will lead me to Ka‘b ibn Maalik?' The people began to point (me) out for him till he came to me and handed me a letter from the king of Ghassan in which the following was written:

"To proceed, I have been informed that your friend (i.e. the Prophet, peace and blessing be upon him) has treated you harshly. Anyhow, Allaah does not let you live at a place where you feel inferior and your right is lost. So join us, and we will console you."

When I read it, I said to myself, 'This is also a sort of a test.' Then I took the letter to the oven and made a fire therein by burning it. When forty out of the fifty nights elapsed, behold ! There came to me the messenger of the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him and said, ' The Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him, orders you to keep away from your wife,' I said, 'Should I divorce her; or else! what should I do?' He said, 'No, only keep aloof from her and do not cohabit her.' The Prophet, peace and blessing be upon him, sent the same message to my two fellows. Then I said to my wife. 'Go to your parents and remain with them till Allaah The Almighty gives His Verdict in this matter." Ka‘b added, "The wife of Hilaal ibn Umaiyyah came to the Messenger, peace and blessing be upon him and said, 'O Messenger of Allaah! Hilaal ibn Umaiyyah is a helpless old man who has no servant to attend on him. Do you dislike that I should serve him? ' He said, 'No (you can serve him) but he should not come near you.' She said, 'By Allaah, he has no desire for anything. By, Allaah, he has never ceased weeping till his case began till this day of his.'

On that, some of my family members said to me, 'Will you also ask the Messenger of Allaah to permit your wife (to serve you) as he has permitted the wife of Hilaal ibn Umaiyyah to serve him?' I said, 'By Allaah, I will not ask the permission of the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him, regarding her, for I do not know what the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him, would say if I asked him to permit her (to serve me) while I am a young man.' Then I remained in that state for ten more nights after that till the period of fifty nights was completed starting from the time when the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him, prohibited the people from talking to us. When I had offered the Fajr prayer on the 50th morning on the roof of one of our houses and while I was sitting in the condition which Allaah The Almighty described (in the Quran) i.e. my very soul seemed straitened to me and even the earth seemed narrow to me for all its spaciousness, there I heard the voice of one who had ascended the mountain of Sala' calling with his loudest voice, 'O Ka‘b ibn Maalik! Be happy (by receiving good tidings).' I fell down in prostration before Allaah The Almighty, realizing that relief has come. The Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him, had announced the acceptance of our repentance by Allaah The Almighty when he had offered the Fajr prayer. The people then went out to congratulate us. Some bringers of good tidings went out to my two fellows, and a horseman came to me in haste, and a man of Banu Aslam came running and ascended the mountain and his voice was swifter than the horse. When he (i.e. the man) whose voice I had heard, came to me conveying the good tidings, I took off my garments and dressed him with them; and by Allaah, I owned no other garments than them on that day. Then I borrowed two garments and wore them and went to the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessing be upon him.


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