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Adam – Successors After Adam

After Adam’s death, his son Seth (Shiith) took over the responsibilities of prophethood, according to a hadith narrated by Abu Dhar. Abu Dhar also narrated that Prophet Muhammad said: “Allah sent down one hundred four psalms, of which fifty were sent down to Seth.” When the time of his death came, Seth’s son Anoush succeeded him. He in turn, was succeeded by his son Qinan, who was succeeded by his son Mahlabeel. The Persians claim that Mahlabeel was the King of the Seven Regions, that he was the first one to cut down trees to build cities and large forts and that he built the cities of Babylonia. He reigned for a period of forty years. When he died his duties were taken over by his son Yard, who on his death, bequeathed them to his son Khonoukh, who is Idris according to the majority of the scholars (Ulama).

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Adam – Adam’s Death

Abdullah Ibn Al-Iman Ahmad Ibn Hanbal narrated that Ubai Ibn Kab said: “When Adam’s death was near, he said to his children: ‘0 my children, indeed, I feel an appetite for the fruits of Paradise.’ So they went away searching for what Adam had requested. They met with the angels, who had with them his shroud and what he was to be embalmed with. They said to them: ‘0 Children of Adam, what are you searching for? What do you want? Where are you going?’ They said: ‘Our father is sick and has an appetite for the fruits of Paradise.’ The angels said to them: ‘Go back, for your father is going to meet his end soon.’ So they returned (with the angels), and when Eve saw them she recognized them. She tried to hide herself behind Adam. He said to her: ‘Leave me alone. I came before you; do not go between me and the angels of my Lord.’ So they took his soul, embalmed and wrapped him, dug the grave and laid him in it. They prayed on him and put him in his grave, saying: ‘0 Children of Adam, this is your tradition at the time of death.”‘

Before his death Adam reassured his children that Allah would not leave man alone on the earth, but would send His prophets to guide them. The prophets would have different names, traits and miracles, but they would be united in one thing: the call to worship Allah alone.

This was Adam’s bequest to his children. Adam finished speaking and closed his eyes. Then the angels entered his room and surrounded him. When he recognized the Angel of Death among them, his heart smiled peacefully.

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Adam – Adam’s Successor, Seth

Years and years passed, Adam grew old, and his children spread all over the earth. Muhammad Ibn Ishaq related: that when Adam’s death drew near, he appointed his son Seth (Shiith) to be his successor, and taught him the hours of the day and night along with their appropriate acts of worship. He also foretold to him the flood that would come.

Abu Dhar narrated that Prophet Muhammad said: “Allah sent down one hundred four psalms, of which fifty were sent down to Seth.”

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Adam – Adam Preaches to His Children

Adam was utterly grief-stricken by the loss of his two sons: one was dead, the other was won over by the devil. Adam prayed for his son and turned to mundane matters, for he had to toil for his sustenance. At the same time, he was a prophet, advising his children and grandchildren, telling them about Allah, and calling them to believe in Him. He told them about Iblis and warned them by recounting his own experience with the devil and of how the devil had tempted Cain to kill his brother.

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Adam – The First Murder – from Various Hadith

Ibn Abbas, Ibn Masud and a group of the companions of the Prophet related that inter-marriage of the male of one pregnancy with the female of another had been in practice among Adam’s children. Abel wanted to marry Cain’s sister, but Cain wanted her for himself because she was very beautiful. Adam ordered him to give her in marriage to his brother, but he refused. So Adam ordered both of them to offer a sacrifice, then went to Mecca (Makkah) to perform the pilgrimage. After Adam had left, they offered their sacrifices: Abel offered a fat lamb – he was a shepherd – while Cain offered a bundle of the worst grain. A fire descended and devoured Abel’s sacrifice, leaving that of Cain, so he became angry and said: “I will surely kill you so that you will not marry my sister.” Abel replied: “Allah accepts from those who fear Him.”

According to Abu Jaafar Al-Baqer, Adam was watching their offering and was sure that Abel’s sacrifice would be accepted. Cain complained to Adam that the acceptance was due to his supplication for Abel and that he had not done the same for him, so he promised his father to settle the matter between himself and his brother. One night, Abel was late returning from tending his flock. Adam sent Cain to see what had happened to him. When he found him, he glared at him saying: “Yours was accepted, and mine was not.” Abel replied: “Allah only accepts from the Allah-fearing.” Cain became angry on hearing this and hit him with a piece of iron that was with him, thus killing him. In another version it was said that he killed him with a rock to the head while he was sleeping.

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Adam – The First Murder – from Quran

Allah the Almighty revealed: And (0 Muhammad) recite to them (the Jews) the story of the two sons of Adam Abel and Cain – Habil and Qabil respectively in truth; when each offered a sacrifice (to Allah), it was accepted from the one but not from the other. The latter said to the former: “I will surely kill you.”

The former said: “Verily, Allah accepts only from those who are Al-Muttaqeen (the pious). If you do stretch your hand against me to kill me, I shall never stretch my hand against you to kill you, for I fear Allah; the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn, and all that exists). Verily I intend to let you draw my sin on yourself as well as yours, then you will be one of the dwellers of the Fire, and that is the recompense of the Zalimeen (polyt heists, and wrong-doers).”

So the Nafs (self) of the other (latter one) encouraged him and made fair-seeming to him the murder of his brother; he murdered him and became one of the losers. Then Allah sent a crow who scratched the ground to show him to hide the dead body of his brother. He (the murderer) said: “Woe to me! Am I not even able to be as this crow and to hide the dead body of my brother?” Then he became one of those who regretted. Surah 5:27-31

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Adam – The First Burial

Meanwhile, Cain did not know what to do with his brother’s corpse. He carried it on his back wandering from place to place, trying to hide it. His anger had now subsided, and his conscience was saddled with guilt. He was tiring under the burden of the corpse which had started to have a stench. As a mercy, and to show that dignity could be retained even in death, Allah sent two ravens that began fighting, causing the death of one. The victorious bird used its beak and claws to dig a hole in the ground, rolled its victim into it and covered it with sand.

Witnessing this, Cain was overcome with shame and remorse. “Woe unto me!” he exclaimed. “I was unable to do what this raven has done, that is to hide my brother’s corpse.” Cain then buried his brother. This was also the first burial of man.

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Adam – The First Death

Abel was intelligent, obedient, and always ready to obey the will of Allah. This contrasted sharply with his brother, who was arrogant, selfish and disobedient to his Lord. Abel did not fear his brother’s threats, but neither did he want his brother to be hurt. Allah had blessed Abel with purity and compassion. Hoping to allay the hatred seething in his brother, Abel said: “My brother, you are deviating from the right path and are sinful in your decisions. It is better that you repent to Allah and forget about your foolish threat. But if you do not, then I will leave the matter in the hands of Allah. You alone will bear the consequence of your sin, for the Fire is the reward of the wrong-doers.”

This brotherly plea did nothing to lessen the hatred in Cain’s heart, nor did he show fear of Allah’s punishment. Even familial considerations were cast aside. Cain struck his brother with a stone, killing him instantly. This was the first death and the first criminal act committed by man on earth.

When Abel had not appeared for some time, Adam began to search for him but found no trace of his beloved son. He asked Cain about Abel’s whereabouts. Cain insolently replied that he was not his brother’s keeper nor his protector. From these words his father understood that Abel was dead and Adam was filled with grief.

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Adam – Cain’s Jealousy of Abel

Adam was in a dilemma. He wanted peace and harmony in his family, so he invoked Allah for help. Allah commanded that each son offer a sacrifice, and he whose offering was accepted would have right on his side. Abel offered his best camel, while Cain offered his worst grain. His sacrifice was not accepted by Allah because of his disobedience to his father and the insincerity in his offering.

This enraged Cain even further. Realizing that his hopes of marrying his own beautiful sister were fading, he threatened his brother: “I will kill you! I refuse to see you happy while I remain unhappy!”

Abel, feeling sorry for his brother, replied: “It would be more proper for you, my brother, to search for the cause of your unhappiness and then walk in the way of peace. Allah accepts deeds only from those who serve and fear Him, not from those who reject His commands.”

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Adam – Commentary: Cain’s Disobedience

It appears that since the beginning of time, physical beauty has been a factor in the attraction between men and women. This attraction caused Cain to envy his brother Abel. He rebelled against Allah’s command by refusing to accept his father’s advice.

At first glance Cain’s rebellion might appear strange, but we should remember that, although man has a pure nature, the potential for dichotomy exists. In other words, he has both good and bad qualities. He can become greedy, covetous, possessive, selfish and even destructive. Man is, therefore, capable of seeking self-satisfaction even if it leads to failure in this life and in the hereafter. The path to goodness lies in harnessing the enemy within him, his baser self, by controlling evil thoughts and deeds and practicing moderation in his desires and actions. His reward then will be the delights of this world and the hereafter. Thus Allah tests us through our divided nature.

It appears that since the beginning of time, physical beauty has been a factor in the attraction between men and women. This attraction caused Cain to envy his brother Abel. He rebelled against Allah’s command by refusing to accept his father’s advice.

At first glance Cain’s rebellion might appear strange, but we should remember that, although man has a pure nature, the potential for dichotomy exists. In other words, he has both good and bad qualities. He can become greedy, covetous, possessive, selfish and even destructive. Man is, therefore, capable of seeking self-satisfaction even if it leads to failure in this life and in the hereafter. The path to goodness lies in harnessing the enemy within him, his baser self, by controlling evil thoughts and deeds and practicing moderation in his desires and actions. His reward then will be the delights of this world and the hereafter. Thus Allah tests us through our divided nature.