[Taken from Introduction to Islam by Muhammad Hamidullah (Centre Culturel Islamique, Paris, 1969), with some changes to make it more readable. The changes are marked by pairs of brackets like around this paragraph.]
IN the annals of men, individuals have not been lacking who conspicuously devoted their lives to the socio-religious reform of their connected peoples. We find them in every epoch and in all lands. In India, there lived those who transmitted to the world the Vedas, and there was also the great Gautama Buddha; China had its Confucius; the Avesta was produced in Iran. Babylonia gave to the world one of the greatest reformers, the Prophet Abraham (not to speak of such of his ancestors as Enoch and Noah about whom we have very scanty information). The Jewish people may rightly be proud of a long series of reformers: Moses, Samuel, David, Solomon, and Jesus among others.Read more...
It has been narrated on the authority of Hadrat Anas Ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) that eighty persons from the inhabitants of Makka swooped down upon Allah's Messenger (may Allah's blessings and peace be upon him) from the mountain of Tan'im. They were armed and wanted to attack the Holy Prophet (may Allah's blessings and peace be upon him) and his Companions unawares. He (the Holy Prophet) captured them but spared their lives. So, Allah (The Glorified and the Exalted) revealed the verse:
"And It is He Who restrained your hands from them and their hands from you in the valley of Makkah after He had given you a victory over them." (48:24)
"By the grace of Allah, you are gentle towards the people;
if you had been stern and harsh-hearted, they would have dispersed from round
about you" The noble Qur'an, A'al-Umran(3):159
Even with all of his concerns and obligations, Muhammad (s.a.a.w.)
never became unmindful of his people. He had a special place in his heart for
each one of them and he was known among them for his soft-spokenness, his
generosity, his tolerance, and his friendliness.
He would joke with his companions, sit and talk with them,
play with their children and sit them on his knee. He would respond to the call
of the free man or the slave, or the young girl or the poor. He would visit the
sick on the opposite end of the city and he would attend their funerals. He
would accept the people's apologies and their excuses, and he was the most
humble among them.
Abdullah ibn Al-Haritha narrated:
"I have never seen anyone who smiled more continuously than
the Messenger of Allah (s.a.a.w.)" (Narrated by Al-Tirmathi)
Usamah ibn Zayd narrated:
"The daughter of the Prophet (s.a.a.w.) sent (a messenger) to
the Prophet (s.a.a.w.) requesting him to come as her child was dying. However, the
Prophet (s.a.a.w.) returned the messenger and told him to convey his greeting to her
and say: "Whatever Allah takes is for Him and whatever He gives is for Him.
Everything with Him has a limited fixed term (in this world) and so she should
be patient and hope for Allah's reward." She again sent for him, swearing that
he should come. The Prophet (s.a.a.w.) stood up, and so did Sa'id ibn Ubadah, Mu'ath
ibn Jabal, Ubay ibn Ka'ab , Zayd ibn Thabit and some other men. [When he
arrived,] the child was brought to Allah's Apostle (s.a.a.w.), his chest heaving. On
that the eyes of the Prophet (s.a.a.w.) began shedding tears. Sa'd said, "O Allah's
Apostle! What is this?" He replied, "It is mercy which Allah has lodged in the
hearts of His slaves, and Allah is merciful only to those of His slaves who are
merciful (to others)." (Narrated by Al-Bukhari)
Ibne Malik narrated that
"the Prophet (s.a.a.w.) used to mix with us (the children) to
the extent that he would say to a younger brother of mine, 'O abu-Umayr! What
did the Nughayr (a kind of bird) do?' " (Narrated by
Abu Dawood narrated that the Messenger of Allah would say:
"Let none of you transmit to me [evil news] about my
companions, for I like to meet with you with a pure heart"
Ibn Masood narrated that Muhammad (s.a.a.w.) said to a group he sent to teach and advise:
"Be lenient and do not make [this religion] difficult.
Bring glad tidings and do not repel"
AbuMalik al-Ash'ari said:
"The Messenger of Allah (s.a.a.w.) said: 'Cleanliness is half
of faith, and [saying] 'Praise be to God' fills the scale, and [saying] 'Glory
be to God' and 'Praise be to God' fill up what is between the heavens and the
earth, and prayer is a light, and charity is proof [of one's faith], and
patience is a brightness, and the Qur'an is a proof for or against you. All men
go out early in the morning and sell themselves, some setting themselves free
and others destroying themselves.' " (Narrated by
Taken from "The Life of Muhammad" by Muhammad Husayn Haykal,
translated by Dr. Ismail Ragi A. al Faruqi
May peace and blessings be on all the Messengers of God. Prophet Muhammad is
a direct descendant of Isma'il, the first son of Prophet Ibrahim(Abraham).
Prophet Muhammad was born in Makkah as a fullfilment of the prayer of Abraham as
explained in the following verses of the Holy Quran, a book of revelations from God to the Prophet.
002.124 And remember that Abraham was tried by his Lord with certain commands,
which he fulfilled: He said: "I will make thee an Imam to the Nations." He pleaded:
"And also (Imams) from my offspring!" He answered: "But My Promise is not within
the reach of evil-doers."
002.125 Remember We made the House a place of assembly for men and a place of
safety; and take ye the station of Abraham as a place of prayer; and We covenanted
with Abraham and Isma'il, that they should sanctify My House for those who
compass it round, or use it as a retreat, or bow, or prostrate themselves (therein in
002.126 And remember Abraham said: "My Lord, make this a City of Peace, and
feed its people with fruits,-such of them as believe in God and the Last Day." He said:
"(Yea), and such as reject Faith,-for a while will I grant them their pleasure, but will
soon drive them to the torment of Fire,- an evil destination (indeed)!"
002.127 And remember Abraham and Isma'il raised the foundations of the House
(With this prayer): "Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us: For Thou art the All-
Hearing, the All-knowing.
002.128 "Our Lord! make of us Muslims, bowing to Thy (Will), and of our progeny a
people Muslim, bowing to Thy (will); and show us our place for the celebration of
(due) rites; and turn unto us (in Mercy); for Thou art the Oft-Returning, Most
002.129 "Our Lord! send amongst them an Apostle of their own, who shall rehearse
Thy Signs to them and instruct them in scripture and wisdom, and sanctify them: For
Thou art the Exalted in Might, the Wise."
002.130 And who turns away from the religion of Abraham but such as debase their
souls with folly? Him We chose and rendered pure in this world: And he will be in
the Hereafter in the ranks of the Righteous.
002.131 Behold! his Lord said to him: "Bow (thy will to Me):" He said: "I bow (my
will) to the Lord and Cherisher of the Universe."
by Ishaq Zahid
May 6, 2007