The internet has been abuzz today over a report that the grave of one of the companions of Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) named Hujr bin Adi Al-Kindi (RA) was desecrated. His body appears to have been exhumed and moved to an undisclosed location.
The initial reporting of this came from an Free Syrian Army (Jaysh Al-Hurr) Facebook page in which we cannot confirm who operates this. Also, the only media, thus far, to report the incident is Iranian controlled Press TV, who states Wahhabis were the attackers. Their twin Iranian network in Arabic Al-Alam TV says similar. These are not independent news networks, who are free from having a political slant regarding events in Syria to make matters totally clear.
Nonetheless, whether the perpetrators of this desecration are part of the Free Syrian Army, Wahhabis, Al-Qaeda or Alawis, the desecration of any grave, especially a companion’s, is despicable.
Let’s also put things into perspective that Syrians being killed is far more reprehensible than the exhuming of this or any other grave.
With mentioning these issues above, let’s deal with some matters that we know for certain:
1) Hujr bin Adi Al-Kindi also known as Hujr Al-Khayr (The Excellent) was a companion of the Prophet Muhammad (SAWS), who participated in campaigns later including the conquering of Syria and Iraq. He was of the followers of Imam Ali (KW) when Mu’awiyah bin Abi Sufyan refused to pledge allegiance to the rightly-guided khalifah. He later gave allegiance to Imam Al-Hasan (SA) after Imam Ali’s martyrdom. He refused to subject himself to the tradition of cursing and disavowing (tabarra) of Imam Ali and was killed by acolytes of Mu’awiyah for his affinity (walaa) for the Prophet’s household.
We should not romanticize Islamic history; we must be intellectually honest. In the first two generations of Muslims, prominent companions such as Abdullah bin Ma’sud (RA), Abu Dharr (RA), Ammar bin Yasir (RA) and others in Al-Madinah were persecuted and killed by Ummayyads and/or their legion. This continued under the Abbasid era in which scholars such as Malik bin Anas (RH) and Abu Haneefah (RH) were abused and jailed by those with political authority.
Since the early generations of Muslims abused and even killed fellow Muslims including companions, it should come as no surprised that current day Muslims who are even more disconnected from the Sunnah could do such things as kill other Muslims, bomb scholars in the pulpit and desecrated graves.
2) In recent years, there have been attacks and vandalism of masaajid and graves by extremists who view visiting them is a form of idolatry. This has taken place in India and more recently in Libya and Mali. As there are some who make exaggeration while visiting graves, tearing down masaajid and desecrating graves is completely reprehensible. This is the same mentality that has destroyed the Islamic heritage in Al-Madinah, Makkah and other locations in the Hijaz.
Intellectual discourse with manners brings the best ideas to the surface, not violence and hostility. The desecration of masaajid and graves is but a lack of spirituality residing in harsh Muslims, who fancy themselves as defenders of the deen.
May Allah (SWT) bring the truth to the fore and expose those who tarnish the name of the Ummah. May He (SWT) bless Prophet Muhammad, his family, his righteous companions and all of those who follow them until the Day of Judgement.