Why Do The Muslims Cherish The Blessed Birth of The Prophet of Islam?

by Habib Bilal

Allah is not acceptable without following the Prophet then how it’s possible that our love for the Prophet would be easily accepted without following the Prophet?

Masjid e Nabvi, Madina

When the third month of the Islamic calendar Rabbi-u-Awwal arrives, Muslims throughout the world celebrate the blessed birth of the Prophet Mohammad in different ways by organising processions, conferences and rallies; reciting poems in his praise and discussing his noble character.

Indeed, the birth of the Prophet is a blessing for the whole universe as the Quran says, “And We have sent you (O Muhammad) not but as a mercy for the whole universe” [Al-Anbiya, 21:107]. There’s no doubt that the blessed birth of the Prophet has a great significance in Islam and it is not something which can be dragged into the battlefield of sectarian conflicts.

As Muslims, we should always remember that just celebrating the blessed birth or decorating the mosques and buildings is not enough to prove our love for the Prophet. If we truly love Allahﷻ and His Messenger than we must follow the teachings of Islam only that our love would be accepted in the Divine Presence, as the Quran declares, “Say, (O Prophet), ‘If you should love Allah, then follow me, (so) Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful” [Ale-Imran, 03:31].

So, as per the Quranic commandment, even our love for Allah is not acceptable without following the Prophet then how it’s possible that our love for the Prophet would be easily accepted without following the Prophet?

Prophet Muhammad was chosen and sent by Allah Almighty to preach and confirm the monotheistic teachings of Adam, Abraham, Moses, Jesus and all other Prophets, peace be upon them. The fundamental factor that brings reverence and respect to Prophet Muhammad in both Islamic and non-Islamic circles is his noble character. He was the best in character as Quran says that “And assuredly, you are placed high on the most glorious and exalted character” [Quran 68:04].

Selflessness & Forgiveness: First thing we must understand is that all Prophets were sent by God on earth and they all were selfless in their whole life with the only objective to fulfil the order of God. They did not undertake any action out of their personal desire and will. The extent of Prophet Muhammad’s selflessness can be seen from the example of His preaching in the valley of Taif, where people led naughty children to throw stones at him while he was preaching. He had to run for His life and he was all covered in blood. But still, he did not complain to God rather while wiping the blood off his face he was saying, “O Lord! Forgive my people, for they know not” [Bukhari, 6929]. Therefore, throughout his life, he was selfless in his character and every moment of his life was for the sake of God and for spreading His message.

Mercy and Compassion: Allah made Islam a religion of mercy, ease, moderation, clemency and temperance. The Prophet Muhammad is a Prophet of mercy; he was sent as mercy, and he is full of piety and compassion. Once someone said to him “O Allah’s Messenger! Invoke curse upon the polytheists” whereupon He replied: “I have not been sent as the invoker of the curse, but I have been sent as a mercy” [Muslim, 2599]. Emphasizing mercy the Prophet said: “The merciful are shown mercy by Ar-Rahman (The Merciful). Be merciful on the earth, and you will be shown mercy from Who is above the heavens” [Tirmidhi, 1924].

Love and Kindness: In his social life as well as his family life, Prophet Muhammad was always kind, affectionate and respectful to people. He was known to have a pleasant smile on his face, which never faded away. He took the lead to extend greetings to those he knew and those he did not know, including children and slaves. On the importance of love, the Prophet said: “By the One in Whose Hand is my soul! You will not enter Paradise until you believe, and you will not believe until you love one another” [Tirmidhi, 2688]. In this particular narration, Prophet has described love as the basic condition to be a believer and to enter paradise. Holy Prophet also showed significant love and tenderness to children; he seated them on his lap, put them on his shoulders and kissed them.

A view of Dargah Hazratbal Shrine in Srinagar on Friday, May 22, 2020. KL Image By Bilal Bahadur

Peace and Integration: The religion Islam itself is peace and the Prophet was a lover of peace. One of the companions of Prophet, Hazrat Abu Umamah (ra) said: “Our Prophet commanded us to spread peace (everywhere)” [Ibn Majah, 3693]. At another place, Prophet said: “Should I not guide you to something doing which you will love one another: ‘spread peace among you” [Abi Dawud, 5193]. He wanted people to live in harmony and always encouraged people to resolve their differences by opting for peace, integration and reconciliation instead of going for violence. It comes in a hadith that once the people of Quba fought with each other and threw stones on each other. When the Prophet was informed about it, he said: “Let us go to resolve the situation and make reconciliation between them” [Bukhari, 2693].

Justice and Equality: Prophet Muhammad was a just and noble individual. He emphasized that all members of society are equal and duty-bound to resist oppression and should not be content as onlookers. Justice and equality was of paramount importance to him. He was meticulous and resolute in administering this. While counselling his companions on this Prophet said: “Do not be a people without a will of your own, saying: ‘If people treat us well, we will treat them well; and if they do wrong, we will do wrong,’ but accustom yourselves to do good if people do good, and do not behave unjustly if they do evil” [Tirmidhi, 2007]. At another place, the Prophet said: “Help your brother whether he is the oppressor or the oppressed one.” When his companions asked him how they should help an oppressor, he replied, “By preventing him from oppressing others” [Bukhari, 2444].

His Honesty: Prophet Muhammad’s truthfulness and honesty were so famous among his most noble attributes, from his tender age and before he declared his Prophethood, that the people of that time would call him al-Amin (the trustworthy). He always taught about honesty and truthfulness, it is mentioned in a hadith that Prophet said: “Abide by truthfulness. For indeed truthfulness leads to righteousness. And indeed, righteousness leads to Paradise” [Tirmidhi, 1971]. This characteristic of his reached the extent that almost everyone in Mecca would put their money, valuables, and savings in the hands of Prophet for safekeeping. Even, after he was called for Prophethood, despite all their hostility to him, the Quraysh continued depositing their treasure with him.

His Generosity: Generosity is another hallmark of the personality of Prophet Muhammad. He was the most generous person there could ever be. He preferred others over Himself and always fulfilled the needs of anyone who came to Him to ask for something. Hazrat Ibn Abbas (ra) says that “Allah’s Messenger was the most generous of all the people, and he used to reach the peak in generosity in the month of Ramadan” [Bukhari, 3554]. At another place, the Prophet said, ‘I do not mind if I have the (equivalent of) Uhud (mountain) in gold, provided that I know how much it is and I would dispose of it in charity” [Ibn Majah, 1787]. His generosity is something that Muslims should aspire to and spread the examples of his generosity to other people as well so that the world could become a better place.

His Cooperation: Prophet is the best and the highest among people, however, whilst all the greatness and grandeur, He was cooperative towards people and helped others in doing the chores in any way He could help them. He never treated Himself as someone special, rather he would mix with common people and cooperate with them in any way he could. As one of his companions narrates regarding the battle of Trench: “I saw the Messenger of God on the Day of the Trench carrying dirt (that was dug from the trench) until His chest was covered with” [Bukhari, 3034].

His Modesty: Another striking personality attribute of Prophet Muhammad is his modesty. About modesty, he said, “Modesty is the part of Faith” [Muslim, 36]. He also said, “Modesty does not bring anything except good” [Bukhari, 6117]. Prophet was modest of all and never encouraged any kind of vulgarity; rather he was bashful and strongly encouraged modesty in his followers. Thus, modesty is imperative to Islam and Prophet being a living and breathing Islam ascertains that he was modest in every respect.

His Humbleness: Prophet Muhammad led a very simple and humble life. He advised his followers to be likewise and content with what they had. He said: “Look at those who are beneath you (in wealth) and do not look at those who are above you, for it is more suitable that you should not consider as less the blessing of Allah [Ibn Majah, 4142]. At another place, Prophet says, “Allah has revealed to me that you should be humble towards one another and should not wrong one another” [Ibn Majah, 4214]. He achieved great success and victory, including the conquest of Makkah. The city, which had treated him so cruelly and driven him away, was given back to him without the need for any bloodshed. The Prophet rode into Makkah in complete humility and delivered a sermon to the assembled people. He spoke of brotherhood and equality of man.

Habib Bilal

His Pleasantness: Prophet Muhammad was the most pleasant person. He would greet everyone with a smile and always spoke to people with gentleness. One of His companions Hazrat Ibn Jaz (ra) said: “I have never seen a man who smiled as much as the Messenger of Allah” [Tirmidhi, 3641]. This shows that the personality of Prophet Muhammad was pleasant and gentle. Prophet also said, “Every good is charity. Indeed, among the good is to meet your brother with a smiling face” [Tirmidhi, 1970]. A person who would smile most of the time ought to leave a good impression on people, and wherever He would go He ought to have spread love and pleasantness.

 These were some glimpses of the Prophet’s Sirah, which every Muslim should know and understand because the right understanding of the life of the Prophet is the right understanding of Islam.

(The author is a research scholar in the department of Islamic Studies at Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University (BGSBU), Rajouri.)


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