The people of Yemen are known as a welcoming community of peoples with gentle character and soft hearts. When the call to Islam was made by the Prophet SAW, the people of Yemen quickly accepted the shahadah when the da’wah reached them.
The Prophet SAW once said, “The people of Yemen have come to you and they are more gentle and soft-hearted. Belief is Yemenite and Wisdom is Yemenite…” , and in another narration, the Prophet SAW made the supplication: “O Allah! Bestow Your blessings on our Sham! O Allah! Bestow Your blessings on our Yemen.”
Yemen is a country steeped with history and Islamic heritage. Before the birth of the Prophet SAW, a number of Prophets were known to have called the people in Yemen to Tawhid, amongst whom are Prophet Hud AS, Prophet Hadun AS, Prophet Soleh AS, Prophet Hanzolah AS and Prophet Sarjis AS.
Some companions of the Prophet SAW who were sent by the Prophet SAW to Yemen for da’wah were Sayyidina Ali bin Abi Talib RA, Sayyidina Mu’az bin Jabal RA and Sayyidina Abu Musa Asya’ri RA.
Hadhramout is the largest valley in Yemen, stretching from Aden to the cape of Ras Al Hadd. Its people have embraced Islam since the time of the Prophet SAW, and until today, a majority of the Muslims are from the Ahl Sunnah Wal Jamaah, and of the Shafiie fiqh.
Imam Muhajir ila Allah Ahmad bin Isa, an ‘ulama and a descendent of the Prophet SAW, was the central figure in the spread of the creed of the Ahl Sunnah wal Jamaah in Hadhramout. Originally from Basrah, Iran, the Imam migrated from one country to another to escape from the tribulations at that time until he finally made Hadhramout home, under the Divine Wisdom. His method of da’wah emphasizes on gentle akhlaq, focus on adab and beautiful speech, as per the way of the his grandfather, the Prophet Muhammad SAW.
It is from Imam Muhajir’s descendents that Islam spread throughout the region, and even further, to the world, as they ventured out to shores of India, the lands and islands of what is now known as Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, to areas of Africa, Madagascar, and also parts of Europe.
Tareem - Land of a Thousand Awliyas
Tareem (تريم) is a historic town situated in the Hadhramaut Valley of South Yemen South Arabia, approximately 35km away from the town of Seiyun. Tareem is widely acknowledged as the theological, juridical, and academic center of the Hadhramaut Valley.
Tareem is a blessed land that has also been the abode of many Prophets AS, the Companions, scholars and auliya of Allah RA. It is also estimated to have the highest concentration of descendants of the Prophet Muhammad SAW anywhere in the world.
Some of the names attributed to the town of Tareem are:
- Al-Ghanna (rich): An affirmation of the town’s richness in knowledge and the people of knowledge, as well as the plentiful plantations and gardens surrounding it
- As-Siddiq (truthful): A nod to the fact that the people of Tareem immediately agreed to give their pledge of allegiance to Sayyidina Abu Bakr as-Siddiq RA as the khalifah after the Prophet SAW.
- At-Tib (medicine): Imam Umar Muhdhor described Tarim as a Town for Medicine as it gives cure to its inhabitants, both physicial and spiritual
- Al-Huffaz (Protected): Due to the fact that numerous people of Tareem are people who memorize the Qur’an and guard their memorization.
Three categories of places in Tareem are blessed: its valleys, the maqamat of ‘ulama and saints that reside within it, as well as its masjids. In fact, there was a time where there were approximately 365 masjids in the small town, each with its own history and never empty of devotees performing their prayers or other worship. Many of its masjids are between 500-900 years old; imagine the number of pious men and women who have graced them over the years, mashaAllah!
An important focus of Islamic learning, Tareem is estimated to contain the highest concentration of descendants of the Islamic prophet Muhammad (sayyids) anywhere in the world. The city is distinguished for producing numerous Islamic scholars, including Imam al-Haddad, whose books have been translated into numerous languages all around the world. Additionally, Tareem is also home to Dar al-Mustafa, a well-known educational institute for the study of traditional Islamic Sciences, as well as its sister institure, Dar az-Zahra.
Tareem is generally hot and dry. The average annual temperature is about 26.7°C, although during the summer high temperatures can exceed 37.8°C. During the winter, the average temperature occasionally falls below 21.1°C.
The average rainfall is approximately 73 millimeters per year. A few times throughout the year, however, it experiences heavy rainfall resulting in flooding.
Upon receiving news that the people of Tareem accepted his caliphate immediately without protest, Sayyidina Abu Bakr RA made 3 du’as specially for the people of Tareem:
Firstly, that Allah swt would increase the numbers of the pious and the knowledgeable in Tareem, just as mushrooms would sprout all over the earth after rainfall. Secondly, that Allah swt will bless its sources of water, such that Tareem will never have a shortage of water until the Day of Judgement. Thirdly, that Allah swt will grant prosperity and peace to the town of Tareem, free from wars and hostility.
Tareem today is as Sayyidina Abu Bakr RA has made du’a for it, alhamdulillah. It is due to this du’a of Sayyidina Abu Bakr as-Siddiq RA that Syeikh Muhammad bin Abu Bakar Ba’abad said that Sayyidina Abu Bakr RA would give a special intercession to the people of Tareem in the hereafter.