The Life of Muhammad (PBUH)

By: Allama Baqir Sharif al-Qarashi

Translation by: Abdullah al-Shahin

p. 173-186

 

It may be too useful to discuss the method of the Islamic mission in Mecca which was the strong fort of idolatry and polytheism and a center of bad habits and traditions that resulted from the deep ignorance of those people. The Prophet’s mission in inviting people towards Islam was based on the following methods:

1. wisdom and good preaching

Allah has said, (Call to the way of your Lord with wisdom and goodly exhortation, and have disputations with them in the best manner; surely your Lord best knows those who go astray from His path, and He knows best those who follow the right way).[1] Indeed, the Prophet (a.s.) followed all kinds of wisdom and reasonable arguments to guide that society and save it from its ignorance.

2. good saying

The Prophet’s invitation depended on the good saying that did not provoke anyone’s passion or hurt his dignity. Allah has said, (And say to My servants (that) they speak that which is best),[2] and said, (and speak kindly to mankind).[3]

3. leniency and mercy

The Prophet (a.s.) depended in his mission on leniency and mercifulness and he avoided harshness and strictness. Allah has taught and guided him to these high morals. Allah has said, (and had you been rough, hard hearted, they would certainly have dispersed from around you).[4]

4. repelling evil with what is best

The Prophet (a.s.) repelled the oppression and severity of Quraysh against him with being kind and charitable to them as Allah the Almighty had said to him, (Repel (evil) with what is best, then lo! he between whom and you was enmity would be as if he were a warm friend).[5]

5. patience

The Prophet (a.s.) armed himself with patience in fulfilling his mission, for Allah had ordered him of that. Allah has said, (And bear patiently what they say and avoid them with a becoming avoidance),[6]and said, (And be patient, and your patience is not but by (the assistance of) Allah, and grieve not for them, and do not distress yourself at what they plan),[7] and said, (So wait patiently for the command of your Lord, and obey not from among them a sinner or an ungrateful one).[8]

Prophet Muhammad (a.s.) suffered from the people of Quraysh the severest kinds of harms and distresses, but he did not mind. He tolerated all that for the sake of Allah and he kept on fulfilling his mission until Allah the Almighty granted him with the great victory over his enemies. Allah ordered him to imitate His Arch-Prophets who were patient with the hardships they met from their peoples. Allah has said, (So bear up patiently as as did the Arch-Prophets bear up with patience and do not seek to hasten for them (their doom)).[9]

6. warning the unbelievers against Allah’s punishment

From the methods of the Prophet (a.s.) in his mission was his warning the society against the punishment of Allah the Almighty if people did not respond to him. He recited before them the Qur’anic verses that censured their disbelief and deviation. Allah has said, (And whoever does not believe in Allah and His Messenger, then surely We have prepared burning fire for the unbelievers),[10]and said, (and We have prepared for the unbelievers a disgraceful chastisement).[11] The Holy Qur’an has many verses warning the unbelievers against the torment of Allah and confirming that they will remain forever in the fire of the Hell under severe tortures.

7. giving good tidings to the believers to be in the Paradise

The Prophet (a.s.) always gave good news to the believers that they would win the Paradise with all its bliss. Allah has said, (Surely Allah will cause those who believe and do good deeds to enter gardens beneath which rivers flow),[12] and (Surely the righteous shall be in gardens and rivers, in the seat of honor with a most Powerful King),[13] and (Those who believed in Our communications and were submissive; enter the garden, you and your wives; you shall be made happy. There shall be sent round to them golden bowls and drinking-cups and therein shall be what their souls yearn after and (wherein) the eyes shall delight, and you shall abide therein).[14]

There are many other verses like these ones that the Prophet (a.s.) made use of in carrying out his mission and spreading his values and goals.

The invitation to Allah

The first principle that the Prophet (a.s.) adopted was the invitation to the Oneness of Allah; the only Creator of the universe and the only Giver of life. He raised the motto of monotheism by saying, “say: there is no god but Allah and you shall be successful!” This was too heavy for that society which had been brought up on worshipping idols. Therefore, the people of that society rushed out to put out this light and silence this voice. The Prophet (a.s.) proved the oneness of Allah through irrefutable evidences that, here, we shall show some of them.

The existence of Allah

From the facts that can never be denied or suspected is the existence of the Great Creator, the Manager of the universe, and the Giver of life. The Prophet (a.s.) depended in proving this fact on some verses from the Holy Qur’an. Allah has said, (Most surely in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day, and the ships that run in the sea with that which profits men, and the water that Allah sends down from the cloud, then gives life with it to the earth after its death and spreads in it all (kinds of) animals, and the changing of the winds and the clouds made subservient between the heaven and the earth, there are signs for a people who understand).[15]

This verse has irrefutable proofs on the existence of the Great Creator. It talks about the creation of the heavens with millions of galaxies flowing in the space with absolute accuracy and orderliness. Allah says about the sun and the moon, (It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor does the night outstrip the day. They float each in an orbit).[16]

The alternation of the day and the night is also a clear sign on the existence and great power of Allah Who says, (And a sign to them is the night: We draw forth from it the day, then lo! they are in the dark).[17]

Another sign is the running of ships in the huge seas and oceans carrying goods from a place to another. Allah says, (And a sign to them is that We bear their offspring in the laden ship).[18]

The coming down of water from the heaven that gives life to all creatures is also a clear sign on the existence of the Creator. Allah says, (Have you not seen how Allah has sent down water from the sky and has caused it to penetrate the earth as springs, and afterward thereby produces crops of different colors; and afterward they wither and you see them turn yellow, then He makes them chaff. Lo! herein verily is a reminder for men of understanding).[19]

The movements of winds and clouds between the sky and the earth are also signs proving clearly the existence of the Great Creator.

From the great signs of Allah the Almighty that prove His existence is the creation of man. Allah says, (And certainly We created man of an extract of clay. Then We made him a small seed in a firm resting-place. Then We made the seed a clot, then We made the clot a lump of flesh, then We made (in) the lump of flesh bones, then We clothed the bones with flesh, then We caused it to grow into another creation, so blessed be Allah, the best of the creators).[20]

From the great signs of Allah the Almighty is this earth; our mother that supplies us with life and blessings and that has seas, rivers, mountains, and everything. Allah says, (And He it is Who spread the earth and made in it firm mountains and rivers, and of all fruits He has made in it two kinds; He makes the night cover the day; most surely there are signs in this for a people who reflect).[21]

The signs that guide to the existence of Allah are uncountable. In every atom of the creatures there is a clear proof on the existence of Allah. The Prophet (a.s.) recited these verses, signs, and evidences before that idolatrous society, but no one believed in them except a very few.

The oneness of Allah

Allah is only one with no partner with Him in His kingdom and might. The impossibility of such partnership has been declared in the Holy Qur’an. Allah says, (If there were therein gods beside Allah, then verily both (the heavens and the earth) had been disordered).[22]

If there is a partner with Allah in this universe that has the same powers as Allah the Almighty has, then everything in the universe will be in disorder, because he will act according to his own wills and wishes which leads to the corruption of the heavens and the earth. Allah says, (and never was there with him any (other) god; in that case would each god have certainly taken away what he created, and some of them would certainly have overpowered others; glory be to Allah above what they describe),[23] and He says, (Most surely your Lord is One. The Lord of the heavens and the earth and what is between them, and Lord of the easts).[24]

The power of Allah

Everything in the heavens and in the earth is submissive to the might and will of Allah the Almighty. Allah says, (Our word for a thing when We intend it, is only that We say to it, Be, and it is),[25] and (The Originator of the heavens and the earth, and when He decrees an affair, He only says to it, Be, so there it is).[26]

The knowledge of Allah

As for the knowledge of Allah, it is indefinite; neither can be counted nor perceived. Allah says, (And with Him are the keys of the unseen; none knows them but He, and He knows what is in the land and the sea, and there falls not a leaf but He knows it, nor a grain in the darkness of the earth, nor anything green nor dry but (it is all) in a clear book),[27] and (And He is Allah in the heavens and in the earth; He knows your secret (thoughts) and your open utterance, and He knows what you earn).[28]

The Holy Qur’an talks about the vastness of Allah’s knowledge saying, (Allah knows what every female bears, and that of which the wombs fall short of completion and that in which they increase; and there is a measure with Him of everything. The knower of the unseen and the seen, the Great, the Most High. Alike (to Him) among you is he who conceals (his) words and he who speaks them openly, and he who hides himself by night and who goes forth by day).[29]

The messenger of Allah (a.s.) recited these verses to the unbelievers of Mecca and showed them irrefutable evidences on the existence and the attributes of Allah, but none responded to him, for they were occupied by total ignorance. Rather, they accused him of being a magician and a liar. They oppressed and fought him until Allah gave him the great victory over them.

The legislation of wudu’ and prayer

At the beginnings of the revelation in Mecca, wudu’ and prayer were legislated as obligations on Muslims. Historians mention that Gabriel came down to the Prophet (a.s.) while he was at the outskirt of Mecca. Gabriel (a.s.) beat the ground and a spring gushed out. Gabriel performed the wudu’ while the Prophet (a.s.) was looking at him. Then, the Prophet (a.s.) performed the wudu’ as Gabriel did. Then, Gabriel offered the prayer and the Prophet (a.s.) did as he saw Gabriel do.[30]

As the prayer was legislated, the azan was legislated with it too. The first Muslim, who called out the azan, was the great companion Abu Tharr al-Ghifari. He went above the Kaaba and recited the azan loudly. The men of Quraysh hurried to and beat him severely until he was unconscious. He was carried to the Prophet’s house, and he did not regain consciousness until the night. In the morning, he mounted his horse and stopped before the men of Quraysh reciting loudly the azan in order to anger them. They ran toward him, but he hurried with his horse away and was safe from them.

The kiblah

The Prophet (a.s.) offered his prayers towards Jerusalem for thirteen years when he was in Mecca. After his emigration to Yathrib, he offered the prayers towards Jerusalem for seven months, and then Allah ordered him to offer the prayer towards the Kaaba. The reason behind that was that the Jews blamed the Prophet (a.s.) and said to him that he offered his prayers towards their kiblah. The Prophet (a.s.) was sad and distressed. In the heart of night, he went out looking at the heavens waiting for an order from Allah the Almighty. The next day and while the Prophet (a.s.) was offering the Duhr Prayer in the mosque of bani Salim, Gabriel came down to him, held him by his two hands, and turned him toward the Kaaba after he had offered two rak’as from the Duhr Prayer, and revealed to him this verse, (Indeed We see the turning of your face to heaven, so We shall surely turn you to a kiblah which you shall like; turn then your face towards the Sacred Mosque).[31] The Jews said as the Qur’an recites, (What has turned them from their kiblah which they formerly observed?)[32] They were answered that it was the truth from Allah the Almighty.[33]

The Prophet’s miracles in Mecca

Allah the Almighty assisted His messenger with wonderful miracles that proved his mission and confirmed his authority as a deputy from Allah. The following are some of the Prophet’s miracles:

1. The Holy Qur’an

The greatest miracle of Prophet Muhammad (a.s.) was the Qur’an that (falsehood can not come to it from before it nor from behind it). It was the firmest evidences on Muhammad’s prophethood and the truthfulness of his mission. The most eloquent men were unable to keep up with it nor could they compose a bit like it. Allah said, (Or do they say: He has forged it? Say: Then bring a chapter (sura) like it and invite whom you can besides Allah),[34] and said, (And if you are in doubt as to that which We have revealed to Our servant, then produce a chapter like it and call on your witnesses besides Allah if you are truthful).[35]

Besides its wonderful eloquence, the Holy Qur’an has all kinds of knowledge and sciences. It includes civil laws, administrative decrees, war arts, and all other fields of life. It has no contradiction or conflict, and it has been kept safe from any forging. Allah says, (Do they not then meditate on the Qur’an? And if it were from any other than Allah, they would have found in it much discrepancy).[36]

If we notice the Bibles, we shall find in their editions contradictions and discrepancies while the Qur’an has been safe from all that, praise be to Allah.

The Holy Qur’an is a miracle in its legislations that keep pace with man’s nature and are not a bit different to the rules of the universe. Allah says, (Surely this Qur’an guides to that which is most upright).[37] The Qur’an’s teachings and rulings have been built on the mere justice and truth. Allah says, (Surely Allah enjoins the doing of justice and the doing of good (to others) and the giving to the kindred, and He forbids indecency and evil and oppression; He admonishes you that you may be mindful).[38]

2. The miracle of the Tree

Imam Ali (a.s.) narrated, “I was with him (the Prophet) when the men of Quraysh came and said to him, ‘O Muhammad, you have claimed something very great that neither your fathers nor anyone from your family had ever claimed. We will ask you for something that if you respond and show it to us, we shall know that you are a prophet and messenger, and if you do not, we shall know that you are a magician and a liar.’

He said, ‘what is it?’

They said, ‘You call this tree until it is plucked out with its roots and then it stands before you.’

He said, ‘Surely, Allah is powerful over everything. If Allah does that to you, will you believe and acknowledge the truth?’

They agreed and he said to them, ‘I shall show you what you have requested though I know well that you do not submit to the truth, and I know that there are from among you some ones who shall be thrown into the well and some shall gather parties (against the Prophet and Muslims).’ Then he said, ‘O tree, if you believe in Allah and the Last Day (day of resurrection) and know that I am the messenger of Allah, let you be plucked out with your roots until you stand before me by the will of Allah!’

By Him Who has sent him (the Prophet) with the truth, it was plucked out with its roots and it came having great roar and sound like that of birds’ wings until it stood before the messenger of Allah (a.s.), and some of its branches touched my shoulders for I was at his (the Prophet) right side. When the men saw that, they said haughtily, ‘Order it that a half of it should come to you and the other half to remain in its place.’ The Prophet (a.s.) ordered the tree, and a half of it came wonderfully roaring until it was about to embrace the messenger of Allah (a.s.). They disbelievingly and insolently said, ‘Order this half to go back to its other half as it was.’ He ordered it and it came back as it was. I (Imam Ali) said, ‘There is no god but Allah. I am the first one to believe in you O messenger of Allah, and the first one to witness that this tree did what it did by the will of Allah to confirm your prophethood and exalt your mission.’ The men all said, ‘He is but a magician and liar; wonderful and expert in magic. Would anyone believe in your matter except one like this?’ They meant me (Imam Ali).”[39]

No one of those ignorant people, who were occupied by falsehood, believed. Allah says, (and even if they see every sign they will not believe in it).[40] Yes, only Imam Ali (a.s.), whom Allah had purified from falsehood and uncleanness, believed.

3. The split of the moon

Some polytheists, among whom were al-Waleed bin al-Mughirah, Abu Jahl, al-Aas bin Wa’il, al-Aas bin Hisham, al-Aswad bin Abd, al-Aswad bin al-Muttalib, Zam’ah bin al-Aswad, an-Nadhr bin al-Harith, and their like, met the Prophet (a.s.) and said to him, “If you are truthful, let you split the moon to us into two halves; one on Abi Qubays and the other on Qayqu’an.”[41]

The Prophet (a.s.) said to them, “If I do, will you believe then?”

They said, “Yes.”

The Prophet (a.s.) prayed Allah to do what those men wanted. It was no long when the moon was split into two halves; one on Abi Qubays and the other on Qayqu’an. The Prophet (a.s.) cried out, “O Abu Salamah bin Abdil Asad and al-Arqam bin al-Arqam, witness this!”

However, no one of them believed. Rather, they all said, “This is fabricated magic.”[42]

The Meccan Suras

As we are still with the Prophet (a.s.) in Mecca, it might be useful to show the Suras that were revealed to him there. They were eighty-six suras, and here are they according to the Qur’anic order:

Al-Fatiha, al-An’am, al-A’raf, Younus, Hud, Yousuf, Ibrahim, al-Hijr, an-Nahl, al-Isra’, al-Kahf, Maryam, Taha, al-Anbiya’, al-Mu’minun, al-Furqan, ash-Shu’ara’, an-Naml, al-Qasas, al-Ankabut, ar-Room, Luqman, as-Sajdah, Saba’, Fatir, Yasin, as-Saffaat, Sad, az-Zumar, Ghafir, Fussilat, ash-Shoora, az- Zukhruf, ad-Dukhan, aj-Jathiyah, al-Ahqaf, Qaf, ath-Thariyat, at-Toor, an-Najm, al-Qamar, al-Waqi’ah, al-Mulk, al-Qalam, al-Haaqqah, al-Ma’arij, Nooh, al-Jinn, al-Muzzammil, al-Muddaththir, al-Qiyamah, al-Mursilaat, an-Naba’, an-Nazi’aat, Abasa, at-Takweer, al-Infitar, al-Mutaffifin, al-Inshiqaq, al-Burooj, at-Tariq, al-A’la, al-Ghashiyah, al-Fajr, al-Balad, ash-Shams, al-Layl, adh-Dhuha, ash-Sharh, at-Teen, al-Alaq, al-Qadr, al-Aadiyaat, al-Qari’ah, at-Takathur, al-Asr, al-Humazah, al-Feel, Quraysh, al-Ma’oon, al-Kawthar, al-Kafirun, al-Masad, al-Ikhlas, al-Falaq, and an-Naas.[43]

It is worth mentioning that these suras, which were revealed to the Prophet (a.s.) in Mecca, deal with monotheism and the evidences on the existence and oneness of Allah. Most of them do not show the religious rites and the legal obligations. The suras that were revealed in Medina deal with that.

[1] Qur’an, 16:125.
[2] Qur’an, 17:53.
[3] Qur’an, 2:83.
[4] Qur’an, 3:159.
[5] Qur’an, 41:34.
[6] Qur’an, 73:10.
[7] Qur’an, 16:127.
[8] Qur’an, 76:24.
[9] Qur’an, 46:35.
[10] Qur’an, 48:13.
[11] Qur’an, 4:37, 151.
[12] Qur’an, 22:14.
[13] Qur’an, 54:54-55.
[14] Qur’an, 43:69-71.
[15] Qur’an, 2:164.
[16] Qur’an, 36:40.
[17] Qur’an, 36:37.
[18] Qur’an, 36:41.
[19] Qur’an, 39:21.
[20] Qur’an, 23:12-14.
[21] Qur’an, 13:3.
[22] Qur’an, 21:22.
[23] Qur’an, 23:91.
[24] Qur’an, 37:5.
[25] Qur’an, 16:40.
[26] Qur’an, 2:117.
[27] Qur’an, 6:59.
[28] Qur’an, 6:3.
[29] Qur’an, 13:8-10.
[30] As-Seera an-Nabawiyyah by ibn Hisham, vol. 1 p. 244.
[31] Qur’an, 2:144.
[32] Qur’an, 2:142.
[33] Majma’ul Bayan, vol. 1 p. 222-227.
[34] Qur’an, 10:38.
[35] Qur’an, 2:23.
[36] Qur’an, 4:82.
[37] Qur’an, 17:9.
[38] Qur’an, 16:90.
[39] Nahjol Balagha, vol. 2 p. 158-159.
[40] Qur’an, 6:25.
[41] Abu Qubays and Qayqu’an are two mountains in Mecca.
[42] As-Seera an-Nabawiyyah by ibn Katheer, vol. 2 p. 116-117, Sahih of al-Bukhari, vol. 4 p. 243, Sahih of at-Termithi, vol. 3 p. 211, Musnad of Ahmed bin Hanbal, vol. 1 p. 413, As-Seera an-Nabawiyyah by Zayni Dahlan, vol. 2 p. 198.
[43] Hayat ar-Rasool al-Mustafa, vol. 2 p. 317.
Source: maaref-foundation.com


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