Invoking Allah for Rain (Istisqaa)
Bukhari :: Book 2 :: Volume 17 :: Hadith 121
We were with 'Abdullah and he said, "When the Prophet saw the refusal of the people to accept Islam he said, "O Allah! Send (famine) years on them for (seven years) like the seven years (of famine during the time) of (Prophet) Joseph." So famine overtook them for one year and destroyed every kind of life to such an extent that the people started eating hides, carcasses and rotten dead animals. Whenever one of them looked towards the sky, he would (imagine himself to) see smoke because of hunger. So Abu Sufyan went to the Prophet and said, "O Muhammad! You order people to obey Allah and to keep good relations with kith and kin. No doubt the people of your tribe are dying, so please pray to Allah for them." So Allah revealed: "Then watch you For the day that The sky will bring forth a kind Of smoke Plainly visible ... Verily! You will return (to disbelief) On the day when We shall seize You with a mighty grasp. (44.10-16) Ibn Masud added, "Al-Batsha (i.e. grasp) happened in the battle of Badr and no doubt smoke, Al-Batsha, Al-Lizam, and the verse of Surat Ar-Rum have all passed .
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