Abu Dhar Al ghifari (radi allahu anhu) was the fourth or fifth person converting to Islam, and from the Muhajirun.
He belonged to the Banu Ghifar, the Kinanah tribe.
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Here is the story of Conversion of Abu Dhar Al ghifari to Islam
It is narrated by Ibn `Abbas radi allahu anhu:
When Abu Dhar received the news of the Advent of the Prophet (ﷺ) he said to his brother, “Ride to this valley (of Mecca) and try to find out the truth of the person who claims to be a prophet who is informed of the news of Heaven. Listen to what he says and come back to me.” So his brother set out and came to the Prophet (ﷺ) and listened to some of his talks, and returned to Abu Dhar Al ghifari and said to him. “I have seen him enjoining virtuous behavior and saying something that is not poetry.
” Abu Dhar Al ghifari said, “You have not satisfied me as to what I wanted.” He then took his journey-food and carried a waterskin of his, containing some water till be reached Mecca.
He went to the Mosque and searched for the Prophet and though he did not know him, he hated to ask anybody about him. When a part of the night had passed away, `Ali saw him and knew that he was a stranger. So when Abu Dhar Al ghifari saw `Ali, he followed him, and none of them asked his companion about anything, and when it was dawn, Abu Dhar Al ghifari took his journey food and his water-skin to the Mosque and stayed there all the day long without being perceived by the Prophet, and when it was evening, he came back to his retiring place.
Ali radi allahu anhu passed by him and said, “Has the man not known his dwelling place yet?” So `Ali awakened him and took him with him and none of them spoke to the other about anything. When it was the third day. `Ali did the same and Abu Dhar Al ghifari stayed with him. Then `Ali said “Will you tell me what has brought you here?”
Abu Dhar Al ghifari said, “If you give me a firm promise that you will guide me, then I will tell you.” `Ali promised him, and he informed `Ali about the matter. `Ali said, “It is true, and he is the Messenger of Allah. Next morning when you get up, accompany me, and if I see any danger for you, I will stop as if to pass water, but if I go on, follow me and enter the place which I will enter.” Abu Dhar did so, and followed `Ali till he entered the place of the Prophet, and Abu Dhar went in with him, Abu Dhar listened to some of the Prophet’s talks and embraced Islam on the spot.
The Prophet (ﷺ) said to him, “Go back to your people and inform them (about it) till you receive my order.” Abu Dhar said, “By Him in Whose Hand my life is, I will proclaim my conversion loudly amongst them (i.e. the pagans).” So he went out, and when he reached the Mosque, he said as loudly as possible, “I bear witness that None has the right to be worshipped except Allah, and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.” The People got up and beat him painfully.
Then Al-Abbas came and knelt over him ((to protect him) and said (to the people), “Woe to you! Don’t you know that this man belongs to the tribe of Ghifar and your trade to Sha’m is through their way?” So he rescued him from them. Abu Dhar again did the same the next day. They beat him and took vengeance on him and again Al-Abbas knelt over him (to protect him).
After this account the Prophet Muhammad sallalahu alaihe wa sallam told him to return to his clan, where he taught his people about Islam. He and his tribe then joined Muhammad after the Hijra, or migration to Medina in 622 CE.
In another narration,
It is related in another hadith, Muslim 6048, Abdullah b. Samit reported that Abu Dhar Al ghifari (ra) said:
Son of my brother, I used to observe prayer two years before the advent of Allah’s Apostle (ﷺ). I said: To which direction did you turn your face? He said: To which Allah directed me to turn my face.
The rest of the hadith is the same but with this addition that they went to a Kahin and his brother Unais began to praise him until he (in verses declared) him (Unais) as winner (in the contest of poetry), and so we got his camels, mixed them with our camels, and there is in this hadith also these words that Allah’s Apostle (ﷺ) came there and he circumambulated the House and observed two Rak’ahs of prayer behind the Station (of Ibrahim).
I came to him and I was the first amongst persons to greet him with Assalam-o-‘Alaikum, and I said to Allah’s Messenger Let there be peace upon you. And he said: Let there be peace upon you too; who are you? And in the hadith (these words are) also found: Since how long have you been here? And Abu Bakr said: Let him be my guest tonight.
A more detailed account of Conversion of Abu Dhar Al ghifari to Islam from sahih Muslim
‘Abdullah b. Samit reported that Abu Dharr said:
We set out from our tribe Ghafir who look upon the prohibited months as permissible months. I and my brother Unais and our mother stayed with our maternal uncle who treated us well.
The men of his tribe fell jealous and they said: When you are anay from your house, Unais commits adultery with your wife. Our -naternal uncle came and he accused us of the sin which was conveyed to him. I said: You have undone the good you did to us. We cannot stay with you after this.
We came to our camels and loaded (our) luggage. Our maternal uncle began to weep covering himself with (a piece of) cloth. We proceeded on until we encamped by the side of Mecca.
Unais cast lot on the camels (we had) and an equal number (above that). They both went to a Kahin and he made Unais win and Unais came with our camels and an equal number along with them. He (Abu Dhar Al ghifari ) said: My nephew, I used to observe prayer three years before my meeting with Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ).
I said: For whom did you say prayer? He said: For Allah. I said: To which direction did you turn your face (for observing prayer)? He said: I used to turn my face as Allah has directed me to turn my face. I used to observe the night prayer at the time of the end of night and I fell down in prostration like the mantle until the sun rose over me.
Unais said: I have a work in Mecca, so you better stay here. Unais went until he came to Mecca and he came to me late. I said: What did you do? He said: I met a person in Mecca who is on your religion and he claims that verily it is Allah Who has sent him. I said: What do the people say about him?
He said: They say that he is a poet or a Kahin or a magician. Unais who was himself one of the poets said. I have heard the words of a Kahin but his words in no way resemble his (words). And 1 also compared his words to the verses of poets but such words cannot be uttered by any poet. By Allah, he is truthful and they are liars. Then I said: you stay here, until I go, so that I should see him. He said: I came to Mecca and I selected an insignificant person from amongst them and said to him: Where is he whom you call as-Sabi?
He pointed out towards me saying: He is Sabi. Thereupon the people of the valley attacked me with sods and bows until I fell down unconscious. I stood up after havin. regained my consciousness and I found as if I was a red idol. I came to Zamzarn and washed blood from me and drank water from it and listen, O son of my brother, I stayed there for thirty nights or days and there was no food for me but the water of Zamzarn.
And I became so bulky that there appeared wrinkles upon my stomach, and I did not feel any hunger in my stomach. It was during this time that the people of Mecca slept in the moonlit night and none was there to eircumambulate the House but only two women who had been invoking the name of Isafa, and Na’ila (the two idols).
They came to me while in their circuit and I said: Marry one with the other, but they did not dissuade from their invoking. They came to me and I said to them: Insert wood (in the idols’ private parts). (I said this to them in such plain words) as I could not express in metaphorical terms. These women went away crying and saying:
Had there been one amongst our people (he would have taught a lesson to you for the obscene words used for our idols before us). These women met Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and Abu Bakr who had also been coming down the hill. He asked them: What has happened to you? They said: There is Sabi, who has hidden himself between the Ka’ba and its curtain. He said: What did he say to you?
They said: He uttered such words before us as we cannot express. Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) came and he kissed the Black Stone and circumambulated the House along with his Companion and then observed prayer, and when he had finished his prayer, Abu Dharr said: I was the first to greet him with the salutation of peace and uttered (these words) in this way; Allah’s Messen- ger, may there be peace upon you, whereupon he said: It may be upon you too and the mercy of Allah. He then said: Who are you?
I said: From the tribe of Ghifar. He leaned his hand and placed his finger on his forehead and I said to myself: Perhaps he has not liked it that I belong to the tribe of Ghifar. I attempted to catch hold of his hand but his friend who knew about him more than I dissuaded me f rom doing so. He then lifted his head and said: Since how long have you been here? I said: I have been here for the last thirty nights or days. He said: Who has been feeding you?
I said: There has been no food for me but the water of Zamzam. I have grown so bulky that there appear wrinkles upon my stomach and I do not feel any hunger. He said: It is blessed (water) and it also serves as food. Thereupon Abu Bakr said: Allah’s Messenger, let me serve as a host to him for tonight, and then Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) proceeded forth and so did Abu Bakr and I went along with them. Abu Bakr opened the door and then he brought for us the raisins of Ta’if and that was the first food which I ate there.
Then I stayed as long as I had to stay. I then came to Allah’s Messenaer (ﷺ) and he said: I have been shown the land abound- ing in trees and I think it cannot be but that of Yathrib (that is the old name of Medina). You are a preacher to your people on my behalf. I hope Allah would benefit them through you and He would reward you. I came to Unais and he said: What have you done?
I said: I have done that I have embraced Islam and I have testified (to the prophethood of Allah’s Messenger). He said: I have no aversion for your religion and I also embrace Islam and testify (to the prophethood of Muhammad). Then both of us came to our mother and she said: I have no aversion for your religion and I also embrace Islam and testify to the prophethood of Muhammad.
We then loaded our camels and came to our tribe Ghifir and half of the tribe embraced Islam and their chief was Aimi’ b. Rahada Ghifirl and he was their leader and hall of the tribe said: We will embrace Islam when Allah’s Messenger (may p,. ace be upon him) would come to Medina, and when Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) came to Medina the remaining half also embraced Islam.
Then a tribe Aslam came to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said: Allah’s Messenger, we also embrace Islam like our brothers who have embraced Islam. And they also embraced Islam. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said: Allah granted pardon to the tribe of Ghifar and Allah saved (from destruction) the tribe of Aslam.
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