Who was the blind sahabi for which this verse of Quran was revealed – (The Prophet) frowned and turned away, because there came to him the blind man (interrupting)… (Quran 80:1)?
Why did Nabi Sallalahu alaihe wwa sallam turned away?
RThe blind sahabi of Rasul Allah Sallalahu alaihe wa sallam was Abdullah ibn Umm Maktoum. He was the son of Qays ibn Sayd and Aatikah bint Abdullah. He was blind by birth and hence his mother was called Umm Maktoum (Mother of the concealed one). Ibn Umm-Maktum was a cousin of Khadijah bint Khwaylid, the Prophet’s first wife.
Although in the following sentences the Prophet (peace be upon him) has been directly addressed, which by itself shows that the act of frowning and turning aside had issued forth from him, the discourse has been opened in a manner as though it was not him but someone else who had so acted. By this style the Prophet (peace be upon him), by a subtle method, has been made to realize that it was an act unseemly for him.
After one knows his relationship with the Prophet (peace be upon him), there remains no room for the doubt that he had turned away from him regarding him as a poor man having a low station in life, and attended to the high-placed people, for he was the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) brother-in-law and a man of noble birth. The reason why the Prophet (peace be upon him) had shown disregard for him is indicated by the word aama (blind man), which Allah Himself has used as the cause of the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) inattention. That is, the Prophet (peace be upon him) thought that even if a single man from among the people whom he was trying to bring to the right path, listened to him and was rightly guided, be could become a powerful means of strengthening Islam. On the contrary, Ibn Umm Maktum was a blind man, who could not prove to be so useful for Islam because of his disability as could one of the Quraish elders on becoming a Muslim. Therefore, he should not interrupt the conversation at that time; whatever he wanted to ask or learn, he could ask or learn at some later time.