14.4 The Covenant of Brotherhood
In order to give the Muslims the strength to uphold these teachings which were new and alien to the spirit of the world at the time and in order to make these principles a living force and a way of life, the Messenger brought all the Muslims together by assigning to each Muslim a brother in Islam. This bond had all the sanctity of the blood brotherhood that the Arabs revered. He brought together one of the Emigrants with one of the Supporters in these contracts, so that the Emigrants would not feel like strangers in the land, and so that the Supporters would forget their old feuds and vendettas. Mohamed chose as his brother Ali ibn Abi Talib, the young cousin he had brought up and loved as his own son.
This act proved beneficial to all. The natives of Medina explained to their Emigrant brethren the customs of the city, and many even shared their homes and purses with them. The natural hospitality of the Arabs, combined with the new faith, made these men completely selfless. Both Emigrants and Supporters thought only of the good of their small community and not of themselves. The Emigrants who had been learning and teaching the Koran for thirteen years helped their brothers from Medina with their studies in religion.
At first the Emigrants were the guests of their brethren but very soon they were able to find work and become independent. Some worked in the fields of the Supporters and shared the harvest with them, while others worked as traders. The Meccans were expert traders and many of them became wealthy in a short time and began to help their less fortunate brethren. Abu Bakr continued to work in commerce, to make much money, and to spend most of it in helping the distressed or in the furtherance of Islam.
They were people who worked hard and were content with little of this world. They had not left a life of ease in Mecca for the sake of material gain, and so long as they were allowed to learn and understand the words of Allah in peace and freedom they were happy.