Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA.)

Umar ibn Al-Khattab (R)

The second Caliph of Islam was Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA). He was a just and the best ruler in Islam after Abu Bakr (RA). It is uncertain whether a brave and wise man like him will be born in the world. And the whole Muslim nation will remember him forever because of his great deeds. Umar (RA) used to give priority to the command of Allah in all cases. Verily, he always followed the Book of Allah and followed every direction of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him).

So I will present some important information about him, that will make clear to you his identity, and his activities. And I also will mention some of his words and deeds, which will motivate Muslims to follow the rulings of Islam. So let’s get started with some discussion about him from his biography.

Who was Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA.)?

Umar (RA) was the second Caliph of Islam. His nickname and famous name were Umar. He was born in Makkah in the Banu Adi tribe of the Quraish dynasty. His father’s name was Al-Khattab ibn Nufayl, and his mother’s name was Hantamah Bint Hisham. In the pre-Islamic period, the tribe of Adi bin Ka’b lived at the foot of the Jabal Akir hill in Makkah. And it was Umar (RA)’s abode. In the Islamic era, Jabal Akir was renamed Jabal Umar. [Tabaqat al-Kubra, volume 3, page 266]

As a child, he grazed his father’s camels and goats in the fields. His father was of a very strict nature. Of course, Umar’s father was a respected person in the tribe for his intelligence. And Umar (RA) also was a very hard worker in his childhood. [Tareekh Ibn Asakir, volume 52, page: 268]

He was a wise man, eloquent, prudent, strong, tolerant, respected person, and the proponent of strong evidence. Verily, he used to settle disputes between Arabs in the case of their quarrels before Islam. Trade was a respectable occupation of the Arab nation in the pre-Islamic era. Umar (RA) also started the business and improved his business considerably. He had the opportunity to travel far and wide for business and to associate with many learned people. [Sirah Amir Al-Mumineen Umar bin Al-Khattab, page: 15]

How did Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA.) accept Islam?

When the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) invited the people of Makkah to Islam, the disbelieving Quraish became enraged. The polytheists became very angry when he told them to give up idolatry and to worship only Allah. They persecuted the Prophet (peace be upon him) in many ways. At one point, they announced killing the Prophet (peace be upon him). They also announced an award for this. However, no one dared to kill the Prophet (peace be upon him). But Umar (RA) dared it.

Then Umar (RA) unleashed his sword and went out to kill the Prophet (peace be upon him). On the way, he met his tribe people Naeem bin Abdullah (RA). Naeem (RA) secretly became a Muslim, but Umar (RA) did not know it. Umar (RA) told him that he was going to kill Muhammad (peace be upon him). [Siyar A’lam al-Nubala, volume 1, page: 139]

During this time,

Umar (RA) found out about the acceptance of his sister and her husband to Islam. Umar (RA) was angered by the news and set out for his sister’s house. Then from outside of the house, Umar (RA) heard the recitation of the Qur’an. At that time, Khabbab Ibn Arat (RA) was teaching Umar’s sister and his sister’s husband Surah Ta’Ha. When Umar (RA) entered the house, they hid the manuscript of the Qur’an. Then Umar (RA) began questioning them. [Sirah Ibn Hisham, Volume 1, page 344]

At one point Umar (RA) beat his sister and her husband severely. Then his sister’s one statement changed his mind. Thereafter Umar (RA) wants to see the manuscript affectionately. But his sister told him to take a bath to be holy and said that he can touch it when he will be holy. Then Umar (RA) took a bath and recited the verses of Surah Ta’Ha. In this, his mind drifted towards Islam. He then went to Muhammad (peace be upon him) and accepted Islam. [Tabaqat al-Kubra, volume 3, page 267]

How did Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA.) get the title ‘Farooq’?

Before Umar (RA) accepted Islam, Muslims used to perform Salah in secret. At that time, it was not safe for them to express themselves as Muslims. Because the infidels and polytheists of Makkah used to hit them mercilessly and torture them in various ways for accepting Islam. When Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA) accepted Islam, he publicly informed everyone that he had accepted Islam, and he and all the other Muslims came to the Kaaba and began to pray in public.

After his acceptance of Islam, the Muslims used to sit together near the Kaaba, circumambulate the Kaaba, protest against anyone who mistreated them, and resist if anyone attacked them. At that time, a clear division was made publicly between disbelief and Islam due to Umar (RA), and Allah Ta’ala distinguished between truth and falsehood through him. So the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) awarded him the title of Al-Farooq. Verily, Allah Ta’ala has established the truth in the tongue and heart of Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA). And the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said about Umar (RA):

peace be upon him

“Of course, Allah Ta’ala has established the truth in the tongue and heart of Umar and He is Al-Farooq. Allah Ta’ala has distinguished between truth and falsehood through him.” [Tabaqat al-Kubra, volume 3, page 270]

Married life of Umar (RA.)

Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA) married three women in the pre-Islamic period and four women in the Islamic age. But he did not have together more than four wives under him.

The three women he married in the pre-Islamic period were Zaynab bint Maj’un (RA), Quraybah bint Abi Umayyah al-Makhzumi, and Umm Kulsum Mulaikah bint Jarwil. And Quraybah and Umm Kulsum did not accept Islam. So Umar (RA) divorced them both.

The four women he married in the Islamic era were Jamilah bint Sabet (R), Atiqah bint Zayed (R), Umm Hakim bint Al-Haris (R), and Umm Kulsum bint Ali (R).  And Umar ibn Al-Khattab (R) had two slave-women too. They are Fukaihah (R) and Luhaiyah (R). [Al-Bidaya wa’l-Nihaya, volume 7, page: 139]

Offspring of Umar (RA.)

He had a total of thirteen children. He has four daughters. Their names are Hafsa (R.), Rukaiya (R.), Fatima (R.), and Zainab (R.).

And he had nine sons. Their names are elder Zayed (R), little Zayed (R), Asem (R), Abdullah (R), elder Abdur Rahman (R), middle Abdur Rahman (R), little Abdur Rahman (R), Ubaidullah (R), and Iyad (R).

Their mother’s name

Abdullah (R), elder Abdur Rahman (R), and Hafsa’s (R) mother’s name is Zaynab bint Maj’un (R). Ubaydullah (R) and little Zayed’s (R) mother’s name was Umm Kulsum Mulaikah bint Jarwil. Fatima’s (R) mother’s name was Umm Hakim bint Al-Haris (R). Iyad’s (R) mother’s name is Atikah bint Zayed (R). The mother of elder Zayed (R) and Ruqayyah (R) was named Umme Kulsum bint Ali (R). Asem’s (R) mother’s name is Jamilah bint Sabet (R).

The mother of the middle Abdur Rahman (R) and little Abdur Rahman (R) is Luhaiyah (R). And Zaynab’s (R) mother’s name is Fukaihah (R).  [Tabaqat al-Kubra, volume 3, page 265]

Umar (RA.)’s work-life

He used to graze camels and goats with his father in his childhood and youth. And he had worked as a shepherd even after he accepted Islam. He later quit his work as a shepherd and started a halal business. At that time, he gained fame among the Quraish nation through business.

Even Umar (RA) was doing halal business while the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) was alive. During the reign of Abu Bakr (RA), he was Abu Bark (RA)’s accredited consultant and assistant in all the affairs of the Islamic State. After the death of Abu Bakr (RA), he was appointed the second Caliph of Islam by the decision of all prudent Muslims. When Umar (RA) did not have wealth, he used to take the required amount of money from the state treasury. But he did not take anything from the state treasury when he had the resources. In this regard, Umar (RA) said:

umar (R) said

“Know that indeed, I have lowered myself concerning the wealth of Allah at the level of the person responsible for the orphan’s property. If I don’t need it, I’ll refrain. If I feel the need, then I will take it justly. So when I will be wealthy, I will pay back.” [Zahrah At-Tafaasir of Muhammad Abu Zahrah, volume 3, page 1593]

His qualities

He had many great qualities. Among them, I will mention a few important qualities.
Truthfulness: He always spoke the truth, listened to the truth, accepted it, and always ran towards it. He hated lies.
Justice: He did justice to all. Did not favor injustice. He would take strict action if anyone in his family did evil. He cared about obeying Allah’s every command.
Fear of Allah: He always feared Allah Ta’ala. He used to cry in fear of Allah. Many of the Companions saw him weeping as he recited the Qur’an. The fear of Allah was so strong in his mind that he did not fear anyone in the world except Allah.
Humility: His heart was very humble. He never spent his life in splendor. And he did not wear a stylish and expensive dress. Verily, He also wore the clothes that ordinary people wore. There was no arrogance in him.

Courage: He was very Courage before and after Islam. And he was never afraid of telling the truth to anyone. He never backed down from resisting the enemies of Islam. There was no sign of cowardice in him.
Charity: He was the best charitable. His position in terms of charity was above all. But not above Abu Bakr (RA). Umar ibn Al-Khattab (RA) also used to compete with him in giving and other good deeds. But Abu Bakr (RA) always won first place, and Umar (RA) always won second place.

His death

One day, while leading the Fajr Salah at the Mosque An-Nawabi, a disbeliever and polytheist named Abu Lulu brutally struck him on the head and navel with a poisonous sword. Then he was seriously injured. After spending three days in this condition, he was martyred on Saturday, 27 Zilhaj of 23 AH.

Sohaib bin Sinan Ar-Rumi (RA) led the in his Funerals Salah. He was buried near the grave of the Prophet (peace be upon him) on the left side of Abu Bakr (RA). He was 63 years old at the time of his death. The period of his reign was 10 years, 6 months, and 4 days. [Al-Bidaya wa’l-Nihaya, volume 10, page: 190]

How many hadiths have Umar (RA.) narrated?

He was very careful in narrating the hadith. He attached great importance to narrating the hadith through various sources. There are more than 500 hadiths narrated by him.

Hafiz Ibn Mulakkin (Rh) has mentioned in his book the number of hadiths narrated by Umar (RA) from the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is 539. Imam Bukhari (Rh) and Imam Muslim (Rh) both together have narrated 26 hadiths from him. However, Imam Bukhari (Rh) has narrated 34 hadiths from him alone, and Imam Muslim (Rh) has narrated 21 hadiths from him alone. [Al-Alam Bi Fawaidi Umdatil Ahkam, volume 1, page: 142]

Famous quotes of Umar (RA.)

  • He who says I am wise, he is foolish.
  • You have to tell the truth, Although you are killed.
  • Seek refuge in Allah from the evil of women. Be their best person carefully.
  • The best Juhd (disinclination from the world) is to keep Juhd a secret in himself.
  • My favorite person is the one who points out my faults to me.
  • Know your enemy and beware of friends except for the faithful.
  • A person who has no softness has no wealth.
  • No one is faithful except the one who fears Allah.
Our supplication

May Allah Ta’ala grant us all the grace to remain steadfast on the truth and to fear only Allah in all times. And may Allah also grants us Tawfiq to obey Allah and His Messenger (peace be upon him) in all situations. Ameen.


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