AT THE COURT OF THE NEGUS
The Holy Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) himself bore with patience and fortitude the cruelties perpetrated by the Quraish, but he felt grieved and hurt when the same treatment was extended to his relatives and companions who faced it steadfastly with loyal devotion. In order, therefore, to spare them the sufferings and humiliation, the Prophet permitted them to migrate to Abyssinia. This caravan of emigrants was composed of 12 men and 4 women including Hazrat Usman (R.A.) and his wife Ruqayya (R.A.), the daughter of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.).
They were well-treated in Abyssinia. The Negus received them with respect and honour, and allowed them to live in peace. When the Quraish heard of it, they dispatched 'Amro b. Aas' and 'Abdullah b. Rabia' to the court of the Negus with the message that those people were rumour-mongers who thrived on spreading ill-will, and therefore, they were the undesirables in his kingdom, and should be deported to Arabia.
The Negus was a well-meaning and reasonable person and declined to accept their word without satisfying himself. He, therefore, decided to investigate and find out for himself the views of the emigrants of 'life' and 'religion.' They were summoned to his presence and were called upon to tell him all about their religion. Jaffar b. Abi Talib (R.A.) stepped forward and said:
"Oh King, we were plunged in ignorance and worshipped idols; we ate flesh of dead animals; our character and manners were steeped in profanity, barbarism, cruelty to women, and the strong destroyed the weak."
"After all, the Merciful Allaah sent us His Messenger - the Holy Prophet, with Light to guide our lives on to the path of righteousness. The Prophet is one of us and we know well his dynasty, integrity and piety. He invited us to the faith of one Allaah Who has no partner, forbade us from idol-worship and exhorted us to speak the truth and treat our relatives and fellow-beings with kindness and respect. He taught us to be good to neighbours and to abstain from things prohibited by Allaah. He forbade us from spilling human blood and misappropriating the property of the orphans. He bade us to offer daily prayers to Allaah, observe fasting in Ramazan and pay Zakaat (compulsory charity for the needy and the poor either direct or through the State) and perform Hajj (annual pilgrimage to Mecca). When we listened to this we were induced to believe in him, and embraced Islam."
The Negus was greatly impressed. He turned away the two Deputies of the Quraish and he himself became a Muslim.
After three months of peaceful and comfortable stay in Abyssinia the Muslim emigrants returned to Arabia.