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The Qurayshi Boycott in 10 BH


The Muslims were in great difficulty because of the economic sanction; one could hear their young children crying throughout the valley. At that time, Quraysh began to disagree among themselves; some of them were happy with the sanctions but others disliked them. Therefore, the ones who disliked the sanctions tried to abrogate the pact. The one who started this effort to abrograte the agreement was Hesham ibn Amr, who talked to Al-Mutim ibn Adi and a group of other men from Quraysh, who then agreed to help him to stop the sanctions.

Allah then revealed to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) news about the parchment; He had sent a special type of termite to it–a type of insect that destroys paper and clothes, making them unusable. The termite ate all the tyranny, sanctions and oppression on the parchment, but left the words of remembrance of Allah intact. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) told this to his uncle Abu Talib.

As a result, Abu Talib went to Quraysh and told them what his nephew had said. He added that if the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) had lied about this, he would not prevent them from attacking him. But if the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) was truthful, they had to lift the sanctions and stop oppressing them.

They replied, “We agree.” Consequently, they went to take the parchment from where they had hung it. But when they saw that what the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) had said had happened to the parchment was true, their only response was that their disbelief became stronger and they became further away from the truth. However, the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) and those with him were now able to leave the valley and return to Mecca [adapted from The Provision of the Traveller: The Guidance of the Best Slave].