Jan 2, 2016

The Promised Man

It has reached the 100 year mark. A hundred years of war between the two clans and he has grown weary of it. He does not even know why his clan and the ones supporting them are fighting. They are not even fighting an outsider or infidels; they are in a civil war that does not lack its bloodiness and horror it slaughters deep into their lives. Each side of the war consists of the one big clan with one or two other clans supporting the main party.

He has heard of some rumors circulating among his people that this war is staged. Even when wars are common in his time and age, people say that this war is unusual. Sure most wars of his people take many years, so a hundred years is not exactly uncommon, and yes it is almost always a war between two tribes or clans. Sometimes it is a three-way or even a four-way war. Nothing unusual about that. But his nagging mind, having caressed with whispers of conspiracies added,"what about the supporting clans? That is the unusual thing."

He stops walking. Too much thinking in the heat of the day hurts his head. He sits down on a bench, facing the market. The market is the busiest one in the City, built by one of the two supporting warring clans. The supporting clans of each side of the war never fight against each other. They just support the main two clans warring among themselves. Who are the they, exactly, he wonders. He knows that before his people and the rival clan arrived in the City these supporting clans were already the residents of this place. For many years they have thrived in the city, controlling the most strategic places in the City and monopolizing the economy. Not until his people come that the monopoly has weaken. He smirked. Can't let one player enjoys the game, he reckons. 

These supporting clans are monotheist. Worshiping one god does not make them act as one, he believes. They are fighting internally with each other, too, but not like the main clans in the City. These bad boys are all about wars. But the monotheists - they like playing cloaks and daggers. They build defenses and mount offences in terms of wealth, political gains, and economic growth. They support the warring sides with the initial aim of weakening the other supporting clans. It is a complex situation, but now he wonders whether their goal is still the same or not.

And it is not like these monotheists even like the warring people. They hate his people. His people came from the South while these monotheists who came long before them are from somewhere in the Northwest. They fled from other places and arrived in the City, having faced hatred and persecution in other countries. Now that same hatred and persecution are cultivated and ingrained in their beliefs, and it is directed to all people who are not them. They are of superior race, according to them, and they have great history with them. 

They scorned his people, saying that their race has been promised a great man, who when he comes out among their people, will unite the monotheists together and to make war with all of the people in the City. "It has been prophesied, it has been prophesied!" is the their chant. Pretty soon, promised man or not, it will become a war-cry. Of that he is sure. Always they are uncomfortable seeing their wealth has been shared with other people. The contempt and the displeasure they show to his people are evident. Their promise of business is treacherous. Their deals are one-sided and callous. The economy is fast becoming unstable. It is predictable that the unrest between these monotheists and his people is growing uncontrollably.

He loves his city. The City shows many potentials, and its growth has been exceptional. The monotheists also love the City, but with deeper root of intentions. They did not come into the City by chance after being chased in other places. They chose this city because of their promised man. The signs are there. The place between two valleys. They know, up to a considerable certainty, that their man will show up in the city. It is written in their religious book. It is promised. And with that promise again comes the taunt to his people that their end is coming. The last of the line of promised men. How marvelous it sounds.

However there is another news reaching his ears. There is a man in a city to the south preaching about a new religion. He has been preaching for twelve years, and last year six of his people have converted to his religion. They are going to meet this man again, very soon, and he decides to go with them. He wants to see this man. He might offer some help into solving the conflict that is brewing his City. The meeting is to be done in secrecy, for the man is facing difficulties from his own clan in his city. He grows excited at the prospect of meeting this man. Who is he, really, he wonders.

And so he meets him, in the dead of the night, with the other eleven people from his City. Of the twelve, five of them have met the man and converted into the new religion. And what he sees in him is something that he could not say it properly but it is strong in his mind, embedded firmly in his heart. The way the man speaks, the way he acts, and the way his whole personality is, and he is mesmerized. He knows straight away that this man is not any man. This is the promised man the monotheists are looking for. How lucky his people are, to have found the last man of the promised men. That he comes not from the lines of the monotheists called the Jews, but from his people, the Arabs. The people who have great history as well, as majestic as well, who worship the One and Only God. That he knows the truth of the religion this man named Muhammad brings, truly he has no doubt now. 

And so the Pledge was done, called the Bai'ah of Aqabah the First, or the Bai'ah of Women, so called by that name because of the contents of the pledge are similar to the one the women made when the Prophet enters the Mekah, and that pledge does not involves the protection of Muhammad's from persecution of his own people, as what pledges of that time usually consist of according to their common practice.

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