Abu Lahab sent his slave-girl Thuwaibiya to the Prophet Muhammad’s ﷺ mother to aid her during labour. When he was born, Thuwaibiya ran to give the news of the birth of a nephew to Abu Lahab. Happy over the birth of his late brother’s son, he pointed two of his fingers towards Thuwaibiya as a gesture of freedom.
Later, after the emergence of Islam, Abu Lahab become one of Muhammad’s ﷺ most bitter enemies and was involved in the persecution of early Muslim converts. He remains the only contemporary of the Prophet who has been condemned by name in the Qur’an.
When Abu Lahab died, his brother Abbas saw him in a dream in a very terrible state. Abbas asked him, ‘What did you get?’
Abu Lahab replied, ‘After I was separated from you, I have not found any rest, good or relief. However because I released Thuwaybiah, I get cool water every Monday from the finger with which I pointed for her to go free.
1. Sahih Bukhari Vol 2 Pg. no. 764,
2. Umdat ul-Qari by Imam Badruddin Ayni
3. Fath ul-Bari by Imam Ibn Hajar Asqalani
4. Sunan Kubra by Imam Baihaqi, The Book of Nikah.
5. Jame Ul Ahadith Wal Maraseel, Masaneed us Sahabah, Hadith no. 43545
6. Kanzul ‘Ummal Vol 6, Hadith no. 15725
7. Musannaf of Abdul Razzaq, Vol 7, Hadith no. 13546.
Commenting on this, the famous Indian Sufi-scholar Shayk Abdul Haqq Dehlavi writes:
‘If an unbeliever, in whose condemnation an entire Chapter of the Qur’an was revealed, expresses happiness at the birth of the Prophet his punishment is reduced on every Monday (day of Mawlid). Then just imagine the rewards for the believer who celebrates Prophet Muhammad ﷺ all his life.’