CONSEQUENCES OF THE WARS OF THE RIDDAH
A still greater danger than the threat to Medina confronted Abu Bakar. It was the revolt of the tribes of Arabia – a revolution that was both political and religious. Thus, within one year of the prophet’s death, apostasy was suppressed all over the peninsula, and the faith was re-established in Arabia. It was indeed, one of the greatest achievements of Abu Bakar, with far-reaching consequences for Islam, Arabia, and the future history of the world.
The wars of Apostasy ended in the victory of Islam which had then almost vanished from Arabia. Defeat would have been disastrous and even ruinous for it. The last behest of the Prophet that Islam alone was to be the religion of Arabia, was fulfilled. ISLAM was, indeed, saved by Abu Bakar’s faith, courage, loyalty, and perseverance. “But for him”, remarks Muir aptly, “Islam would have melted away in compromise with the Bedawi tribes, or likelier still, have perished in the throes of birth.
Death of Muhammad(Sm) :
A medieval Arab historian has rightly observed,” on the death of Muhammad (Sm), it wanted but little and the faithful would have perished utterly. But the Lord strengthened the heart of Abu Bakar, and established us thereby in the resolve to give place not for one moment to the Apostates, giving an answer to them but in these three words SUBMISSION, EXILE, or the SWORD”.
The suppression of the Apostasy saved Arabia from the recrudescence of the tribal anarchy and ignorance of the jahiliya. The victory of Islam was, indeed, the triumph of the new Arab state over the anarchic Arab tribalism of old. This was the social, religious, and political unity of the peninsula, which was threatened by the apostate tribes and rebels.
Fight against the Riddah:
The fight against the Riddah was not merely a fight against the apostates. It was a fight for the political supremacy of the young Republic of Medina over Arabia. His mission was to save Islam and the young republic of Islam, built by his great Master. He achieved his mission by establishing a greater and firmer unification of the Arab tribes under a centralized state of Islam.
As von Kremer writes, “Islam was everywhere triumphant. To Medina, the caravans wended their way… Great enough were the direct success of Islam but greater still were the indirect ones. Apart from the extraordinary progress of the new religion, which convinced the rude sons of the desert more than anything else of its truth, the religious wars at home led to a complete transformation of the social conditions throughout the peninsula”.
For World History:
Viewed in the context of the future history of the Arabs and the world, the wars of Riddah were not really a local affair of the Arabian peninsula. Their natural result was not only the restoration of Medinese authority, as a modern writer puts it, but also the extension of the domination of Islam.
The victory of Islam in Arabia gave a powerful impetus to its spread in the neighboring countries around the peninsula. It is a religion that had both a national appeal to the Arabs and a universal appeal to the whole of mankind. Though he did not live to accomplish this great task, here again, he followed in the footsteps of the Holy Prophet and in the universal spirit of Islam. Thus the wars of Apostasy became the starting point of the great conquest and expansion of early Islam, as the logical result of its victory over the Apostasy.
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