Muhammad (PBUH) The Perfect Model For Humanity
Mustafa Ahmad Al-Zarqa
Language: English | Format: PDF | Pages: 19 | Size: 1 MB
In the Name of Allah, The Compassionate, The Merciful
Great and sublime achievements can he manifest in different fields of human action, and so there are great figures in science and philosophy, in public service and generosity, in war, etc. But in whatever field, the greatness of such achievements is founded upon its generating raison d’être, just as the strength of the trunk of a tree is founded upon the strength of its roots. And, accordingly, the value, importance and enduring quality of this greatness lie in the potency of its grounds.
We affirm that true greatness is based on many pillars and essentials, of which the most important are these four:
First, the psychological and moral qualities of the individual. Second, the nobility and worth of the fundamental values initiated by the individual, and upon which the individual’s actions were based. Third, the extent of the realization of these fundamental values in actions by the individual. Fourth. the extent of the individual’s success in forming a well-qualified leading generation to shoulder the responsibility for maintaining those fundamentals and continuing to put them into effect.
Certainly, greatness cannot be comprehensive nor full unless it contains all of these four elements. In the pages that follow, we shall show the greatness of our Prophet Muhammad, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, in the light of these essential elements, depending for our demonstration on solid facts and historical evidence.
The First Pillar
As to the first pillar, psychological and personal moral qualities, the authentic biographies of the Prophet teach us that he was the very pattern of excellence, the noblest exemplar. Before he was called to prophethood, he was a peerless example of the good youth, of complete purity. The people of his tribe called him ‘the Trustworthy . In a Jahili society, he did not drink wine, nor worshipped idols, nor sought amusement in improper ways, Not even those of his tribe who became mortal enemies after lie was called to prophethood. imputed any misconduct to him. He was affectionate to the poor, tender— hearted to the weak, and a supporter of the oppressed. That is why he took part in the Fudel pact in which some good people bound themselves to help the weak and oppressed and to recover their rights against abuse by the tyranny of tribal chieftains.
After his prophethood, ‘A’isha, the Mother of the Faithful, may Allah be pleased with her, described him in this way in a sound hadith: ‘His moral was the Qur’an itself’, meaning that the moral qualities mentioned in the Qur’in and the injunctions revealed by divine command, were all hamionized in his person. ‘A’isha also said that ‘Allah’s Messenger, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, never took revenge for himself unless the things made inviolate by Allah were violated; he then took revenge for Allah.”
After the Angel Gabriel appeared to the Prophet at the cave of Hira and he came home trembling to tell his wife Khadija about what had happened, she said: ‘By Allah, Allah will never disgrace you.
You keep good relations with your kith and kin, serve your guests generously and assist the deserving who have been affected by calamity.’
After these general remarks about the Prophet’s personal qualities, we shall now refer to four particular virtues, which no other great person has exhibited all together, especially not those who have enjoyed power.
A – Our Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, combined in a single personality the highest degrees of spirituality through diligent worship of Allah with the highest degree of industrious struggle and constructive effort for the service of mankind. He excelled in exerting himself to worship Allah and looking forward to the Day of judgement. He was sincere in his desire and diligent to please Allah. He gave charity in the cause of Allah without limit. Also he would stand in night prayer until his feet became swollen, and would fast continually, spending the nights and day s in hunger.
However, he dissuaded his Companions from uninterrupted fasting in this way’, lest it prove unbearable to them; he said: ‘As for me I spend the night [in a state such] that my Lord feeds me and provides me drink.’ Once, his wife ‘A’isha, the Mother of the Faithful, may Allah be pleased with her, asked him about his exertion in worship in spite of the fact that Allah had pardoned him for everything he had sent ahead or left behind. He replied: “Should I not be a thankful servant”? And in a sound hadith, he says: “If you knew what I know you would weep much and laugh little.”
Such diligence in worship did not prevent the Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, from initiating the right action at the proper moment in all manner of administrative, legislative, economic, political and military affairs. The Hijra marked the beginning of the Islamic era, the Muslims were beset with many problems, in addition to their shortage of armed forces, as a result of their forced migration. Nevertheless, the Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, seized the opportunity to intercept the great annual trade caravan returning from Syria under the leadership of Abu Sufyan. In consequence, the Prophet entered the battle of Badr in which he humbled the umibelievers of the Quray’sh and impressed upon the enemies of the Muslims a new respect and admiration. Later, in the battle of Uhud, victory turned into defeat when a group of archers deserted the position the Prophet had assigned to them, and the Muslims had to return to Madina greatly weakened. The Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, immediately prepared to enter upon a new battle, accompanied by only those who were with him at Uhud, to renew respect for the Muslims in the minds of the unbelievers. Their enemies were afraid and marched off toward Makka. Thereupon, the Muslims went back, led by the Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, to Madina, their morale which had been damaged by defeat thus restored and having learnt an invaluable lesson for their future military affairs.
B – Humility, modesty and altruism are among the rarest of personal attributes among the great and eminent if they also enjoy supreme authority. The Prophet, despite the high solemnity of his state and the freely given reverence of his Companions, shunned all torms of pomp and appearances of pride such as, typically, characterize rulers, heads of state, and holders of high office. The Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, and his followers were the same in outward manner, in dress. in their attitude when seated, even in the physical work they undertook. For example, in the battle of the Trench, they personally took part in the digging and carrying. When travelling, the Prophet used to gather firewood to help his followers in preparing food, and he was so like any one of them that newcomers were unable to distinguish him among his followers in the mosque. Thus, it was normal to ask the question. ‘Which of you is Muhammad’?’ whereupon the Companions would point to the Prophet.
Of his modesty, a sound hadith reported by Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri, may Allah be pleased with him, records: “The Messenger of Allah, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, was more modest than the virgin behind the curtain [or in the apartment].”
Out of selflessness and concern for others the Prophet spent freely from his income from moneys, spoils of war, and gifts to himself, leaving literally next to nothing for his family. It is recorded that whenever he was given a vessel of milk as a gift, he would call the poorest of the Muslims, the ‘sitters on the bench’, to drink and he himself drank the remainder after them.
It as related from ‘A’isha, may Allah be pleased with her, that she said: “Never did the family of Muhammad, upon him be peace, eat their full of Harley-bread for three successive days.’
According to al-Bukhari and Muslim, the Prophet died in such a condition that his armour was pledged to a Jew.
The moral qualities of self-discipline and denial for others’ sake, is lacking among rulers and presidents who are accustomed — even in the so-called democratic and socialist regimes of our age —to taking exclusive possession of houses and means of transport and all other conveniences, as well as to piling up wealth by exploiting their positions of authority.
C – The Prophet’s submission to right is the third of his unique traits. Addressing Umar bin al- Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, who wanted to deal forcefully with a Jew who had come to the Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, then in straitened circumstances, to demand payment of a debt, and had done so harshly, the Prophet said: ‘Let him be. for the creditor has the right to speak harshly.’
The Prophet’s unequalled forbearance, a quality especially rare among those who wield power, towards those who are uneducated and rude, is another demonstration of his submission to right. The incident is well-known of a bedouin who came to the Prophet and asked him for a gift (of money), and pulled at the Prophet’s collar until it chafed his neck. The Prophet showed extraordinary forbearance in responding to the bedouin and gave him what he asked despite his ill-manners.
D – The Prophet’s ideal life was characterized by full adherence in practice to the high moral standards he taught. There were no gaps between his words and his deeds.
Thus, he did not break an agreement with any of his enemies nor acted treacherously even if he feared treachery from them, nor did he engage in falsehood to obtain a victory in any of his battles. The sound hadith — ‘War is a stratagem’ does not by any means indicate an exception to this moral standard in politics. It indicates the permission in the actual business of battle, to disguise from an enemy such information as the size of one’s force or their deployment – for example, to marshal ranks for a battle in such a way as to show massive numbers or to make a din so that the enemy tears the imminent arrival of large reinforcements. An actual instance of this noble stratagem is how the Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, would lead his forces in a direction different from his intended destination, in order to conceal that information from the enemy. That is no more than sound practical wisdom and security, and not a violation of high moral standards in politics and tactics.
An admirable tradition narrates this incident from the life of the Prophet. A polytheist, ‘Abdullah bin Sa’d bin Abi Sarh, apostatized after embracing Islam and defamed the Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him. The Prophet ordered the Muslims, accordingly, after the conquest of Makka, to execute him. But he, ‘Abdullah, took refuge with ‘Uthman bin ‘Affan, his foster brother, may Allah be pleased with him, who took him to swear allegiance to the Prophet. The Prophet three times refused this allegiance, but then accepted it. After ‘Abdullah had departed, the Prophet, may peace and the blessings of Allah be upon him, said: “Was there not among you any man who rose to kill him (i.e. ‘Abdullah) when I refused his allegiance?” They said: ‘Oh, Prophet of Allah! Why did you not make a sign?’ The Prophet said: “Prophets should not use tricks that deceive with the eyes.”
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