Narrated Ibn ‘Umar:
(The Prophet) said, “O Allah! Bless our Sham (Syria and some other countries) and our Yemen.” People said, “Our Najd as well.” The Prophet again said, “O Allah! Bless our Sham and Yemen.” They said again, “Our Najd as well.” On that the Prophet said, “There will appear earthquakes and afflictions, and from there will come out the side of the head of Satan.”
NOTE: Prophet (SAW) prayed for Shaam and Yemen. Just goes to say that Allah will help Syria and take them out of the conditions they’re in currently. Allah-ul-Musta`aan! <3
The Arabic word nejd/najd literally means “upland” and was once applied to a variety of regions within the Arabian Peninsula. However, the most famous of these was the central region of the Peninsula roughly bounded on the west by the mountains of the Hejaz and Yemen and to the east by the historical region of Bahrain and the north by Iraq and Syria.
In the early years of Islam, Najd was seen as a troubled land of insurgencies because its nomadic tribes were not immediately receptive to Prophet Muhammed’s message. This early resistance is partly responsible for Muhammad’s criticism of Najd; which is seen in the hadith that records him praying aloud and asking:
“O God, give us blessings in our Syria, O God, give us blessings us in our Yemen.” Someone called out, “And in our Najd?” But the Prophet ignored him. The Prophet repeated his request for blessings upon Syria and Yemen, and again the onlooker shouted, “And in our Najd?” Finally, the Prophet replied, “From that place will come only earthquakes, conflicts, and the horns of Satan.”
Furthermore, when the Najdi tribes did convert to Islam they interpreted it solely as an alliance with Muhammad, thus after his death, they were among the first to rebel against Caliph Abu Bakrand refuse to pay the alms tax (zakat) to Medina. The hostilities between the Najdi tribes and the Muslims escalated when Musaylima (d. 12/633), a Najdi from the Banu Hanifah tribe, tried to defeat the caliphate by claiming to be a Prophet and sending troops to destroy the Muslim army in the year 12/633. During this fight, known as the Battle of al Aqraba, the Najdi troops killed numerous companions but were eventually defeated and forced to accept Median control. [Wikipedia]
According to Al-Mulhib, Prophet (SAW) didn’t pray for the people of Najd because of their evils and so they’d lessen their prosecutions on people. And Allah knows best.
And he, Ibn Battaal, says: قرن الشيطان, ‘side of the head of Satan’, is his party and his army.
Ka`b said: Dajjal will emerge from Iraq.
`Amr ibn al-`Aas said: Dajjal will emerge from the core of Kufa (a city in Iraq).
[Taken from Ibn Battaal’s commentary on Sahih al-Bukhari]
P.S. according to the scholars of the past, earthquake is among the signs of Allah and one can offer Salah during it, just as Prophet (SAW) offered Salah when he saw the eclipse.
This doesn’t mean that you start praying in a building during an earthquake, which might just fall off. Out in the open would be a good option.
Personal opinion: if salah is not possible at the time, make du`a. Do istighfaar, and ask Allah for protection. As Prophet (SAW) did while strong winds blew.
The promises we make, we tend to break so easily. Mostly because we forget. Earthquakes remind us.
Narrated ‘Ubada bin As-Samit:
who took part in the battle of Badr and was a Naqib (a person heading a group of six persons), on the night of Al-‘Aqaba pledge: Allah’s Apostle said while a group of his companions were around him, “Swear allegiance to me for:
1. Not to join anything in worship along with Allah.
2. Not to steal.
3. Not to commit illegal sexual intercourse.
4. Not to kill your children.
5. Not to accuse an innocent person (to spread such an accusation among people).
6. Not to be disobedient (when ordered) to do good deed.”
The Prophet added: “Whoever among you fulfills his pledge will be rewarded by Allah. And whoever indulges in any one of them (except the ascription of partners to Allah) and gets the punishment in this world, that punishment will be an expiation for that sin. And if one indulges in any of them, and Allah conceals his sin, it is up to Him to forgive or punish him (in the Hereafter).” ‘Ubada bin As-Samit added: “So we swore allegiance for these (points to Allah’s Apostle).”
Another pledge. Another promise.
Make it. Don’t break it.
This statement is a consolation after last night’s earthquake: punishments in this world are an expiation for the sins. In other words, you won’t be punished for those sins in the Hereafter, inshaAllah.