NUSAYBA BINT KA'B AL-ANSARIYAH
Nusayba bint Ka’b al-Ansariyah, also known as Umm Omara and al-Maziniyyah, was one of only two women who joined in the second pledge of allegiance to Islam by newly converted Muslims. Nusayba is most known for her early conversion to Islam and her bravery at the Battle of Uhud where she was the only woman to fight in defence of the religion. Umm Omara was part of the Banu Najjar tribe living in Saudia Arabia during the time of the Prophet. She fought in many battles alongside the Prophet against the Meccans in the Battle of Uhud, the Battle of Hunian, the Battle of Yamama, and the Treaty of Hudaibiyah.
Initially, Umm Omara was attending the Battle of Uhud alongside the warriors to offer assistance and supplies. However things escalated very quickly and the battle turned from a victory to a defeat. When Prophet Muhammad’s archers disobeyed him and started retreating from the battle field, Umm Omara entered the battle with a sword at the ready to defend and shield him from the enemy, receiving several wounds while fighting.
Umm Omara was of one of the first advocates for the rights of Muslim women and she was the first woman to ask Prophet Muhammad why revelations of the Qur’an only addressed men and excluded women. Soon after this exchange this verse was revealed:
“Verily, the Muslims men and women, the believers men and women, the men and the women who are obedient, the men and women who are truthful, the men and the women who are patient, the men and the women who are humble, the men and the women who give Sadaqat, the men and the women who observe fast, the men and the women who guard their chastity and the men and the women who remember Allah much with their hearts and tongues, Allah has prepared for them forgiveness and a great reward.” (Quran 33:35)
This revelation addressed both genders and for many confirms that both men and women have spiritual, and human rights to an equal degree.
Umm Omara was a warrior-woman who stood up for religion and what she believed in. Her self-sacrifice and perseverance has been an inspiration for Muslim women across time and she occupies a special place in the history of Islam.