In 622 AD, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and his followers migrated from Makkah to Madinah in order to save themselves from the atrocities of Quraysh of Makkah. This migration (Hijra) later resulted in the formation of First Islamic City State in Madinah which later paved the way for Conquest of Makkah and gaining strength of Islam in whole of Arabian Peninsular during the life of Muhammad (PBUH).
Reasons of Migration
The revelation of Holy Qur’an started in 610 AD and Muhammad (PBUH) publically declared his prophethood in 613 AD. Majority of the idol-worshiper people of Makkah, the Quraysh tribe, totally refused the oneness of God, prophethood of Muhammad (PBUH) and his pious teachings and did anything possible to eliminate this new religion before it develop its roots. The rich and poor Muslims everyone had to face cruelty and atrocities of Quraysh while slaves had to face the worst.
In 613 and 615 AD, several Muslims migrated to Abyssinia in two phases and lived with peace in that African kingdom which was a good experience for Muslims about migration.
In 620 AD, several prominent people of the Arab pagan tribes of Aws and Khazraj embraced Islam and they also started preaching of Islam in Yathrib (Madinah). Arrival of Muslims in Madinah was also important politically as it would strengthen the Arab tribes against the Jewish tribes.
It was also the time when uncle of Muhammad (PBUH) and chief of Banu Hashim Abu Talib also died and this made the Makkans brave enough to consider about the killing of Holy Prophet (PBUH).
Migration to Madinah
In 622 AD, most of the people of Arab tribes of Madinah (Aws & Khazraj) had accepted Islam and they invited Muhammad (PBUH) and his followers to migrate towards Madinah where they can live peacefully, while the conditions in Makkah for Muslims were getting worse. Now Quraysh prepared a group of people from every clan of Quraysh tribe to kill Muhammad (PBUH) so that Banu Hashim could not take revenge from them. In this situation, Muhammad (PBUH) allowed his companions to migrate to Madinah (then Yathrib) and they did so secretly one by one. Umar (RA) was the only person who migrated publically and no one dared to stop him.
On the night of 17th June 622 AD (26 Safar 1AH), Quraysh attacked at the house of Muhammad (PBUH) according to their plan but Muhammad (PBUH) had already left the house along with his friend Abu Bakr (RA). Quraysh only find Ali (RA) at the bed of Muhammad (PBUH) and they started searching for Muhammad (PBUH).
Muhammad (PBUH) and Abu Bakr (RA) stayed for three days in Jabal Thawr (cave of Thawr) south of Makkah. Quraysh reached close to that cave during their search but could not find them. Later, the two companions left Makkah and travelled towards Madinah in north of Makkah. On 12th Rabi-ul-Awal 1 AH (2 July 622), Muhammad (PBUH) arrived at Quba, a place near Madinah and built a mosque there, named Quba Mosque. It is the first mosque built by Muslims. After a month of travel on 26th Rabi-ul-Awal (16th July 622), Muhammad (PBUH) and Abu Bakr (RA) reached Madinah who were warmly greeted by the people of Madinah. After arrival of Muhammad (PBUH), the city of Yathrib was named Madinat-un-Nabi (city of prophet) and now known as Madinah.
Later Developments & Importance
In order to settle economic conditions, Muhammad (PBUH) formed brotherhood between the immigrants (Muhajireen) and the settlers (Ansaar). To make peaceful relations between the Muslims and Jews, Muhammad (PBUH) also signed a pact Treaty of Madinah to develop cordial relations between all the people of Madinah. It is also known as the first treaty in Islam.
After migration to Madinah, Muhammad (PBUH) became the most influential personality in Madinah who was made arbitrator between people of Madinah in their conflicts through Treaty of Madinah.
Due to relatively peaceful conditions, Islam flourished in Madinah and people of other areas also got knowledge about this new religion. It was also the start of Islamic society and verses of Holy Qur’an about social and political issues were revealed here.
Just after 8 years of this migration, Muslims conquered Makkah and purified Ka’aba from idols which proved clear victory for Islam against polytheism in the Arabian Peninsular. Thus, Migration to Madinah is integral part of Islamic History and it could not be completed without describing this event.