Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch
Why can nobody reach the rank of Sahaba (even the lowest one)? I did not choose to be born in this time and not in the Prophet’s time. And is there a consensus of the Ummah? I only ask for clarification.
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate
It is the Divine Choice and will that certain people were Prophets, and certain others were their companions. It is not for us to debate the reason we were not chosen. Perhaps if we were present at that time, we would not have fulfilled the heavy trust.
A person is considered a companion of the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and give him peace) if they meet the following conditions:
1) They met the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) in this world in a normal way
2) They were in a state of belief when the meeting occurred
3) They maintained that faith till they died and never lapsed into disbelief in the interim period.
There were many people who were present at that time period and did not become Companions, either because of disbelief or a lack of a physical meeting.
Those who were blessed with this honor were chosen by Allah Most High for that honor. This is an honor that Allah Most High chose to go to them.
Abdullah bin Masud (Allah be pleased with him) narrates, saying, “Allah Most High gazed upon the hearts of His creation and chose from amongst them Muhammad (may Allah bless him and give him peace) and dispatched him as a messenger and singled him out with knowledge. Then, He gazed upon the hearts of the people and chose from them his companions: as ministers and helpers. So whatever the Believers deem to be good is good in the sight of Allah, and whatever they deem foul is foul in the sight of Allah.” [Tabarani]
Getting the Companion’s Reward
Even though you were not afforded the opportunity to be of the Companion (Allah be pleased with them), there is a way for you to share in their rewards.
Abu Th’alaba (Allah be pleased with him) said about the verse: “Be concerned of your own selves. Those who are astray will not harm you, if you are guided.” I have asked the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) about this verse, and he said, “You should still command the good and forbid one another from evil acts until you see greed obeyed, whims followed, worldliness preferred, and each person amazed at their own opinions. If there is something you must pursue, then take care of yourselves and leave the affairs of the general public – for indeed, there will come to you days in which whoever bears patiently will be as though he is grasping onto a burning coal. The one who does good deeds in those days will have the reward of 50 of you.”
Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch teaches Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he completed four years at the Darul Uloom Seminary in New York, where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences.
He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he studied for three years in Dar al-Mustafa under some of the most outstanding scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib.
In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Quran and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Quranic exegesis, Islamic history, and several texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.