After considerable discussion, an agreement was arrived at, which came to be known as the Treaty of Hudaibiyah. According to the pact there was to be a truce between the Quraish and the Muslims for a period of 10 years. Each party was free to make its own alliances, but they were not to resort to war. Any person who deserted the Muslims and sought refuge with the Quraish was not to be returned, but any person who escaped from the Quraish to the Muslims was to be returned to the Quraish. It was stipulated that the Muslims were to return to Madinah that year without performing the `Umrah, but they could come to Makkah for three days the following year to perform it, during which time the Quraish would vacate the city for them.
`Uthman’s generosity was boundless. Even before he became caliph, he was always ready to spend in the cause of Islam and to help the needy with his wealth. On two special occasions he proved to be one of the most generous men of his time.
`Umar ibn Al-Khattab, the second caliph of Islam, was stabbed by a Persian slave Abu Lu’ lu’ a Al-Majussi while performing Fajr Prayer. As `Umar was lying on his death bed, the people around him asked him to appoint a successor. `Umar constituted a committee of six people to choose the next caliph from among themselves.
During the reign of Caliph `Umar (634-644 CE), the Islamic state expanded beyond the borders of the Arab Peninsula into Egypt, Syria, and Iraq. In the subsequent reign of Caliph `Uthman, the expansion continued on into Persia, India, Russia, China, Turkey, and across North Africa. The Islamic state became rich and powerful, and many people of these regions accepted Islam and learned the recitation of the Qur’an from the early Muslims.
`Uthman led a simple life even after becoming the leader of the Islamic state. It would have been easy for a successful businessman such as him to lead a luxurious life, but he never aimed at leading such in this world. His only aim was to taste the pleasure of the hereafter, as he knew that this world is a test and temporary. `Uthman’s generosity continued after he became caliph.
During his caliphate, `Uthman faced a lot of hostility. His rivals started accusing him of not following the Prophet and the preceding caliphs. However, the Companions who were true defended him. These accusations never changed him. He remained persistent to be a merciful governor. Even during the time when his foes attacked him, he did not use the treasury funds to shield his house or himself. As envisaged by Prophet Muhammad, `Uthman’s enemies relentlessly made his governing difficult by constantly opposing and accusing him. His opponents finally plotted against him, surrounded his house, and encouraged people to kill him.
The Prophet once climbed the mountain of Uhud with Abu Bakr, `Umar, and `Uthman. The mountain shook with them. The Prophet said (to the mountain), “Be firm, O Uhud! For on you there is a Prophet, a Siddiq, and two martyrs.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Vol. 5, Book 57, Number 24)
`Uthman bin `Affan, the Third Caliph of Islam by Ahmad, Abdul Basit.
(Riyadh: Dar-us-Salam Publications, 2000).
Al-Mubarakphuri, Safi-ur-Rahman. Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum
(The Sealed Nectar). Riyadh: Dar-us-Salam Publications, 1996.