Prophet Mohammad (Sallalaho Alaihi wa Sallam)

Prophet Mohammad (saws) was born on 12th of Rabiul Awwal (22nd April 571 AD) in Makkah (Mecca). His full name is Abul Qasim Mohammad bin Abdullah and he was also referred as “AL-AMIN THE TRUSTWORTHY”

When he was born, Arabia was enveloped in all kinds of bad deeds. The Arabs at that time were worshiping idols, trees, stones, moon, sun, rivers and mountains. They were leading an uncivilized life having no culture and system. The women had no position in their society and young girls used to be buried alive by their fathers. Murders, dacoities and kidnappings were all legalised in their system.

His father, Abdullah, died at Madinah, several weeks before his birth. When he was six years old, his mother, Amenah also passed away, when she was on her return journey from Madinah. The paternal grandfather of Mohammad (saws) was Abdul Muttalib of  "Bani Hashim". When Mohammad (saws) was born, Abdul Muttalib was already an influential leader of the Arab tribe ‘Quraish’ in Makkah and was also caretaker of the Holy Kabah. Mohammad (saws) was raised by his grandfather until the age of eight. When Abdul  Muttalib died he was taken care of by his paternal uncle Abu Talib.

Mohammad's (saws) other paternal uncles were Al Zubair, Haaris, Abbas and Hamza [Razi Allaho tala Anho (ra)] and Abu Lahab. Although Abu Lahab was his uncle but used to create lot of trouble for Mohammad (saws), therefore he was cursed by Allah. Mohammad's (saws) paternal aunts were Arwah and Safiyah (ra).

Makkah was a city well connected with Syria, therefore lot of trading was done between them. Mohammad (saws) joined his uncle's (Abu Talib) trading business at the age of twelve where he used to travel with him to Syria. Since he was honest, reliable and trustworthy, a rich merchant's widow named Khadijah asked Mohammad (saws) to take some merchandise for trade to Syria, which he did successfully.

When he was twenty-five and Khadijah was forty, they got married. They had six children - four daughters and two sons. The first son Qasim died at the age of two and the second son Abdullah died in infancy. Abdullah was also called ‘Tahir’ affectionately as he was born after Mohammad’s prophet hood. The four daughters were: Zainab, Ruqayyah, Umme Kulsoom, and Fatimah (ra).

It was very unfortunate that the Holy Ka`bah was filled with three hundred sixty idols. The people of Makkah had forgotten the original message of Prophet Ibrahim which was mixed with superstitions and self created traditions. Mohammad (saws) never accepted such ideology and always kept himself away from such practices. Mohammad (saws) had developed a habit of visiting Mount Hira for meditation. When he was forty, he received the first revelation from Angel Jibraeel (Gabriel) on Mount Hira where he was a regular visitor. On this first appearance, Jibraeel (Gabriel) said to Mohammad: "Iqraa," meaning Read. Mohammad replied, "I cannot read," as he had not received any formal education and did not know how to read or write. The Angel Jibraeel then embraced him and after releasing said: "Iqraa." Mohammad’s answer was the same as before. Jibraeel repeated the embrace for the third time, asked him to repeat after him and said:

 

Surah No. 96 ,Al Alaq , Ayats No.1 to 5

 

 اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ  o

           خَلَقَ الْإِنْسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ   o  

اقْرَأْ وَرَبُّكَ الْأَكْرَم    o  

 o        الَّذِي عَلَّمَ بِالْقَلَمِ

 O    عَلَّمَ الْإِنْسَانَ مَا لَمْ يَعْلَمْ


 Translation :

"Read in the name of the your Lord, Who has created- Created man, out of a cell of congealed blood: And read , The Lord is Most Bountiful,-Who taught (the use of) the pen,-Taught man what he did not know ."

These are the first five Ayats (verses) revealed in the year 610 AD when the revelation began. The first experience of the revelation had terrified Mohammad (saws). He left mount Hira and went back home. Tired and frightened, he asked his wife: ‘cover me, cover me,’ in a blanket. After he was settled, his wife Khadijah asked him about the reason of his great anxiety and fear. When he informed her about his experience of the revelation, she consoled him with great confidence. Khadijah then consulted her cousin Waraqa bin Naufal, who, during the PreIslamic Period became a Christian and used to write the writing with Hebrew letters and possessing knowledge of previous revelations and scriptures. Waraqa confirmed to her that the visitor was none other than the Angel Jibraeel (Gabriel) who had also come to Musa (Moses). He then confirmed that Mohammad is the expected Prophet. She then accepted Islam and supported her husband through every hardship, most notably during the three-year ‘boycott’ of Prophet by the pagan Quraish. She died at the age of sixty-five in the month of Ramadan soon after lifting of the boycott in 620 AD.

First Converts

For the first three years, the Prophet preached to his family and his intimate friends. First among the converts were his wife Khadijah, his first cousin Ali, his old friend Abu Bakr and his slave Zaid bin Haaris.

The mission of Prophet Mohammad (saws) was to restore the worship of the One True God, the creator and sustainer of the universe, as taught by Prophet Ibrahim and all Prophets of God. In a following revelation, the Prophet was directed to start preaching Islam to everyone. In his mission he was to keep his own garments pure from dirt like urine, excreta and blood stains and same should be for all the believers.! Emphasis was also laid on cleanliness. The believers are required to observe cleanliness from the excretions of all the body organs and to keep their clothes, houses and streets clean. Apart from physical cleanliness, emphasis was also given on spiritual cleanliness. This means that one is free from polytheism, hypocrisy and ill manners, love of wealth, love of fame and other desires. The believers were also directed that the purity of the body and garments and the purity of the spirit are inter-linked and inter-dependent. " Therefore, A pure spirit and an impure body with impure garments cannot live together.

The leaders of Makkah, took his preaching with hostility. The most hostile to the prophet were Abu Lahab, his wife and Umar bin Hassham (Abu Jahel). Initially the leaders tried to bribe Mohammad (saws) with wealth and power including an offer to make him king in return for abandoning his message. They had also convinced his uncle Abu Talib to persuade the Prophet to stop preaching but the Prophet said: "If they were to put the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left to stop me from preaching Islam, I would never stop. I will keep preaching until Allah makes Islam prevail or I die."

When their efforts went in vain the Quraish began to persecute Muslims with physical abuse and torture. Even the Prophet was publicly ridiculed and humiliated. They were frequently throwing filth at him while he prayed in the Ka’bah. Despite all these difficulties the Islamic belief kept all Muslims firm on the religion of Islam. When the persecution became unbearable for most Muslims, the Prophet advised few of them to emigrate to Abyssinia. It was a country situated south of Saudi Arabia which was under the control of Ethiopia in 615 AD where King Habash (Negus, a Christian) was the ruler. The King allowed them to stay under his protection inspite of the pressure from Quraish leaders. The emigrants were allowed freedom of worship in Abyssinia.

After the death of Khadijah, who died at the age of sixty-five in the month of Ramadan 620 AD, the Prophet married Saudah (ra) and she was the only wife until he was fifty-six years old. Later he married other women. It should be noted here that the Prophet's Wives are referred to as “ Ummul Momineen (Mothers of the Believers )“

To spread the message further, the Prophet went to Taaef, another city near Mecca but he was flatly refused and the residents made fun of him. Their children threw stones at him inflicting injuries. When he came out of the town, Jibreel (as) appeared along with an angel and said, “This angel can destroy the town if you ask him to do so.” The Prophet declined and said that the next generation at Taaef may accept Islam.

After his visit to Taaef, the Prophet had experienced the event of al-Asraa (al-Meraaj) (621 AD). In the Al-Asraa, Jibreel (as) took the Prophet from the Grand Mosque near Ka’bah to the furthest (al-Aqsa) mosque in Jerusalem in a very short time during the latter part of a night. Here, Prophet Mohammad (saws) met with previous Prophets (Ibrahim, Musa, Isa and others) and led them in a prayer. In Al-Meraj, the Prophet was taken by Hazrat Jibraeel up to the heavens to show the signs of Allah. When the two reached near the boundary of Lote trees named as Sidratil Muntaha, Hazrat Jibraeel said “ I am not allowed to go beyond this, therefore you must now proceed alone.” The Prophet then viewed many things which no man had seen before. He then had audience with Allah. It was on this journey that five daily Salats (Namaze) were prescribed.

Migration (Hijrat) 

When the non believers made life difficult for the Prophet in Mecca, he returned the properties entrusted to him and left in the night with Abu Bakr to Medinah. They went south of Makkah to a mountain cave named 'Soor' and after staying there for three nights, travelled north to Medinah about two hundred and fifty miles from Makkah. Inspite of all the search made by the nonbelievers, Allah protected the Prophet and they arrived safely in Quba, a suburb of Medinah. They stayed at Quba and the first Mosque was constructed there which is known as Masjide Quba. This emigration is known as the ‘Hijrat’ (migration) and Islamic calendar begins with this event. After his emigration to Medinah, the enemies of Islam did not keep quiet but fought wars with the Muslims. Those wars in which the Prophet participated are known as Ghazwa (e.g. the Ghazwa of Badr, Ohad, Tabuk, Ahzab, Hunain, Khandaq (Trench), Mostalaq etc.) They were fought near or around Medinah and were well defended.

Best example of offering salats was taught on the battlefield. He taught his followers to pray in congregation to the Almighty. Even during the peak of a war, whenever it was time to pray, it was performed and never postponed. A batallion kept the enemy engaged while another was bowing their heads before Allah. After finishing the prayers, the two parties exchanged their positions. Prophet Mohammad (saws) taught the principles of universal brotherhood. This is very much visible in the mosques, when the worshippers are gathered on the call of mauzzan for offering prayers. A peasant and a king ( VIP ) kneel side by side and proclaim , "Allah alone is Great. "

The wonderful values of unity and uniformity can be seen every year during the Hajj. Arabs, Europeans, Africans, Iranians, Indonesians, Turkish, Chinese and people from the subcontinent all meet together in Mecca as members of one family. Men are clad in one dress, plain white cloth, one piece wrapped around lower half of the body and another over the shoulder, bare head without pomp and show. It is impossible to differentiate between a king and a peasant. Women are dressed covered from head to foot in a most simple way. Everyone has the same words on their tongue :

"Here I am, O Allah , at your Command! Here I am at your Command! You are without associate; Here I am at your Command! All praise for you and grace and dominion! You are without associate."

The prophet of Islam introduced a solid system of Justice, where the Judge (Qazi) enjoys supremacy over a king. For instance, some of the Caliphs had to appear before the Judge as ordinary men in Islamic courts.

We all are fully aware, how the black Negroes are treated by the white races. Hazrat BILAL was a Negro Slave in the days of Prophet Mohammad (saws). He was given responsibility to call for prayer from the Mosque of the Prophet at Medina. Hazrat Omar, the second Caliph, had very high respect for Hazrat Bilal and whenever he saw him, as a mark of respect he always welcomed him with "Here come our master". What a tremendous amount of respect was given to a Negro slave. This change was brought about by the Prophet with the help of Quran. 

This is also the reason why Sir George Bernard Shaw said in 'The Genuine Islam,' Vol. 1, No. 8, 1936.

"If any religion had the chance of ruling over England and Europe within the next hundred years, it could be Islam."

 Prophet Mohammad (saws) had established a very organized system of charity known as Zakat. He had then, by the grace of the Almighty, made illegal all anti-social practices like monopoly, usury, creating an artificial scarcity of any commodity, gambling and intoxication. On the contrary, he had promoted construction of places of worship, digging of wells and opening of orphanages. It is evident that by way of following such practices there is a direct influence on the economic system. 

He was by far the most remarkable man that ever set foot on this earth. He preached a religion, founded a state, built a nation, laid down a moral code, initiated numerous social and political reforms.  He had established a powerful and dynamic society to practice and represent his teachings. During the short period of 23 years of his Prophet hood, he had brought a solid change from paganism and idolatry to SUBMISSION to the One True God, from drunkenness & lawlessness to disciplined living and changed the complete Arabian peninsula. He had brought new system, a new life, a new culture, a new civilization. The same culture was later established in the three continents -- Asia, Africa and Europe. Finally he became the pioneer of a dynamic and beautiful religion which is none but ISLAM .

Yes, he was Prophet MOHAMMAD (saws)

Women rights

The Arabs were the biggest enemies of the new-born girls. It was a common practice amongst the Arabs for young girls to be buried alive. It was definitely a barbarous act but nonetheless an established fact. Perhaps, this was due to the bad economic conditions coupled with perceived additional responsibility of a daughter's marriage and safeguarding them during the wars .

In some instances, people used to keep a pit ready by the side of a woman who was to deliver a child and as soon as they got news of a baby girl being born, they immediately buried her in the same pit. After accepting Islam, a drastic change in their behavior was noticed and such practices were totally stopped. The Prophet had taught them to become the biggest defender of the weaker sex. In support, Allah had blessed the Prophet with lots of affection and love of daughters ; He had shown the followers how to bring up and extend love to the weaker sex. The rights of women are sacred and women are fully entitled to share the inheritance of their parents.

Ahadis :

1. Mohammad (saws) said “Any Believer, who has two daughters and has affectionately brought them up till they become adults", placing his two fingers together, the Prophet (saws) continued, "in the life Hereafter, that particular person will be as close to me as these two fingers”

2. Mohammad (saws) said “ If a believer has three daughters or three sisters and he has taught them good etiquettes and treated them with love and dignity till they become independent, then in the life Hereafter, it would become mandatory for Allah to send him to Paradise. One of the companions asked, If the same treatment would be given to a person who has only two daughters. The Prophet replied “ Yes ! he would also meet the same fate ."

In his personal life, the Holy Prophet used to patch his own clothes, repair his sandals, milk his ewe (female sheep), eat with the slaves, sit on the ground, ride a donkey, and carry someone with him; he would not be ashamed to carry his own groceries and other items from the market to his family. He would shake hands with the rich and the poor alike and he would not take his hand back from the hand of the other person until that person himself withdrew his hand. He would salute anyone who came to him, whether rich or poor, old or young. He would never look down on what he was offered even if it were a dry date. He was kind by nature and merciful to every Muslim.

It should be noted that the influence of his qualities like honesty,  best behaviour,  sincerity and trustworthiness was so great on the followers that even after getting a brutal treatment by the nonbelievers in Mecca they did not go back to their old faith and did not turn away from Islam.

One year after the Battle of Trench, the Prophet and approximately One thousand of his companions left for Makkah to perform the pilgrimage (628 AD). When they reached Hudaibiyah (a place near Mecca) they were denied entry by the citizens of Mecca ;later, they returned back after signing a treaty. After the Prophet came back from Hudabiyah, letters were sent to several Kings and the Rulers inviting them to accept Islam. Within two years, many rulers and large number of Arabs accepted Islam.

When the Quraish violated the Hudaibiyah treaty, the Prophet decided to march towards Makkah with an army of ten thousand Muslims. This was done at the end of 630 AD. When they entered Mecca there was no resistance and subsequently Mecca was conquered. Finest example of his forgiving nature was exhibited in the town. This was the city which had refused to listen to his mission, and the people had tortured him and his followers to the extent that he and his followers were driven into exile. Now that city, lay at his feet. On that occasion he stood at the zenith of his power. The laws of war allows for revenge and some of his companions were also ready to inflict the blows, but Mohammad's (saws) heart flowed with affection and love. Standing on one of the steps of the Holy Kaa`ba, HE DECLARED : This day, you are all free." The city had witnessed that he had pardoned all his enemies, even those who killed his beloved uncle HAMZA were also pardoned.

This was the personality of PROPHET MOHAMMAD (SAWS)

Before the death of the Prophet, several thousand had accepted Islam.They were practicing Islam as per the advice of the Prophet and found to be very sincere.  Among them, very close followers are ;

Abdullah ibn Abi Quhafah, better known to us as Abu Bakr, Umar bin Khattaab, Usmaan Ibn Affaan, Ali ibn Abi Talib, Talha, Zubair, Zaid bin Haaris, Abdur Rahman bin Auf, Sa`ad bin Wiqas, Sa`ad bin Zaid, Abu Ubaidah, Abu Huraira, Hamzah bin Abd Al Muttalib, Abbas bin Abd Al Muttalib, Hasan and Husain, many women and several others. Carrying the message of Islam was their greatest responsibility and it was successfully done by them. Within ninety years, the light of Islam had reached Spain, North Africa, North west China and India.

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