It is the character of the Prophet Muhammad which was one of the main reasons for the spread of his noble message. As mentioned before, he never swore and he never spoke vilely about anyone. But after his appointment as a prophet of Allah, he not only observed these excellent qualities for himself, but also ordered all the Muslims to live their lives according to these noble traits. This is why we find that lying and cheating are totally forbidden in Islam, and about lying the Prophet, peace be upon him, said:
"Lying leads to obscenity and obscenity leads to the fire of hell." [Recorded in Sahih Muslim]
For the Arabs to stop cheating and lying it would mean that the whole of their lives would have to be turned upside down. Cheating and lying during business transactions was a regular practice for the Arabs, and it was from this behaviour that the racist slogan "you cheating Arab!" was derived. Backbiting and slandering one another were totally forbidden and the Prophet was instructed by Allah to inform the people that backbiting another Muslim was like eating:
" ... the flesh of your dead brother." [Al-Qur'an 49:12]
Muhammad, peace be upon him, was known to laugh very little, if at all. Rather when he was happy he would express his delight by smiling and he is reported to have said:
"Too much laughter kills the heart." [Reported by at-Tirmidhi and Ahmad]
Likewise when he was angry, he would not fly off the handle or start a tantrum, but rather the complexion of his face would simply turn red.
The generosity of Muhammad, peace be upon him, was so great that one of his companions, Ibn Abbas described his huge generosity as being like "the blowing wind." [Recorded in Sahih Muslim] To give charity during those days was outdated and those who gave charity were very rare in that troublesome society. But the trends of society were nothing to this man, who simply wished to attain the pleasure of Allah by helping those who were less fortunate then himself. In fact his giving of charity often meant that he had to sacrifice the pleasures of life for himself and his family. His wife Aisha, may Allah be pleased with her, reported that "three consecutive days would not go by without the family of Muhammad not eating their fill." [Recorded in al-Bukhari]
His Relationships with Women:
The relationship between Muhammad, peace be upon him, and women has been subject to vicious attack by many western writers. He has been accused of being sexually immoral and depraved by his enemies. Many a feminist has accused him of depriving women of their rights. Yet the reality of this man is unknown to many of these ignorant people. When Muhammad, upon whom be peace, left the cave of Hira, trembling and shaking like a leaf, who was the first person that this alleged male chauvinist turned to? When spreading the message of Islam who was the first person to respond to this so called patriarchal religion? The answer is Khadija, his wife, a woman. It was Khadija who comforted him during these initial days of anxiety. It was Khadija who reassured him of his role by accepting his message. And it was Khadija who gained so much respect and admiration from this remarkable man.
Pre-Islamic Arabia was characterised by the evil crime of burying baby girls alive because they were seen as a shame to the family. Yet it was this man Muhammad who spoke out vehemently against this great social crime. In fact he stated the great blessing and reward of having and rearing female children:
"Whomsoever brings up two girls upon this religion, then me and him shall be like this in paradise [and he joined his forefinger with his middle finger]." [Recorded in Sahih Muslim]
His conduct with women was not like that of the men today, rather he treated the women as they deserved to be treated. He did not openly parade women about like cattle (for example, in pre-Islamic Arabia women were subjected to intolerable humiliation, and they were often paraded naked during the festivals which were held by the pagan Arabs), as was done before the coming of Islam nor did he seek to please them by showing off his masculinity. Rather he as described as being "more shy than a virgin behind a veil." [Recorded in Sahih Muslim] For a man who achieved so much in his lifetime it would be expected (by corrupt western standards!) that Muhammad would abuse his power with regards to women. Yet we do not find a single instance in his life in which he went out raping and destroying the honour of the women folk who were captured. Rather it was the women of Arabia who came forward in their droves to accept the message of this man, who came to liberate humanity from the oppression of this world. Despite the constant barrage of distortion against Islam, it is a fact that more then 70% of those people who become Muslim in the west, are women.
By the time of his death in the year 632 CE almost the whole of the Arabian peninsula had been conquered. A million square miles lay at his feet. Yet such was the humble nature of this man that he would mend his own shoes, sew his own clothes and milk his own goats. Such behaviour has become awe inspiring for millions of people and has thus led them to the beauty of this religion. As a leader for his people he was a great example of humility and mercy. When his companions walked past his house they could hear him crying in his prayer, so much so that it was like a "boiling pot." [Reported by Abu Dawud] He would continuously pray during the nights to such an extent that his feet would swell up. Upon observing this his wife Aisha asked him, "Why do you pray so much, when your Lord has forgiven your past sins and your future sins?", and the reply from the Prophet, peace be upon him, was:
"Should I therefore not be a grateful servant of my Lord?" [Recorded in al-Bukhari]
Conquest of Makkah:
The famous conquest of Makkah is an event which shall be remembered for the justice and mercy which were shown that day. Even though he had the option to punish those who were guilty of oppressing the Muslims, Muhammad, peace be upon him, issued a general amnesty by which many people were forgiven. It was this behaviour which saw the amazing acceptance of Islam by almost the whole population of Makkah literally overnight. How different is this behaviour from that of the non-Muslim conquerors such as the crusaders, who upon the conquest of Jerusalem; raped, looted and burnt their way to success.
His Unique Leadership:
With leadership and conquest comes fame but fame did not affect this man whose only aim was to establish the religion of Allah on earth. His position as a messenger of Allah was not exaggerated. His insistence on being a mere mortal like others was firm. And his desire to single out Allah alone for worship was stressed wholeheartedly. It is for this reason that he ordered his followers not to make any pictorial representations or statues of him. Before his death he condemned the "Jews and Christians for taking the graves of their prophets and pious people as places of worship" [Recorded in al-Bukhari]. By implication this made it prohibited for the Muslims to take the grave of Muhammad, upon whom be peace, as a place of worship. For all those who call the Muslims 'Muhammadans', then this is the response which we as worshippers of Allah bring forward. Throughout history leaders of nations, ideologies and empires have often ended up becoming objects of worship. We find statues and pictures of Marx, Lenin, Caesar, Jesus, St Paul, Hitler, Napoleon, Confucius and so many others. Yet despite all the reminders of these people, it is still this man Muhammad, peace be upon him, who has had the most influence upon history, despite the fact that we find no 3-D visual image of him*. This is indeed a mercy from Allah.
The world of the 7th century was a crumbling place. The empires of Rome and Persia were locked in constant battle. The Chinese and Indian civilisations were in moral decline. Christianity, Zoroastrianism and Judaism were all religions which were fast losing momentum. The case of the Arabs was clear to everyone and they were regarded as being at the bottom of this decaying pit. It was among this decadence that Allah sent Muhammad, peace be upon him. He was like the light to this world of ignorance. Like a lamp did he shine in this abyss of darkness. From the confines of Arabia it was his light that would reach the farthest regions of the earth and release the people from their burdens:
"O Prophet! We have sent you as a witness and a bringer of good news and a warner. And as a summoner to Allah by His Permission, and as a lamp that gives light." [Al-Qur'an 33:45-46]
"Be thankful for small mercies" goes the saying of old. But the mercy which we have been given is far from small. Rather the greatness of this mercy will enable us to live and die upon a way of success and contentment. This mercy is the way of the Prophet Muhammad and through it we, by the will of Allah, will enjoy an everlasting life to come.
"In the messenger of Allah you have a good example for him who hopes in Allah and the Last Day, and remembers Allah much." [Al-Qur'an 33:21]
* This fact has even been attested to by Christians, such as Professor Michael Hart in his book, The 100: The Most Influential Men in History. Despite the fact that Professor Hart casts doubt upon the source of the Prophet's Law, he still cannot help but admit that this man exercised more influence on humanity then anyone else. It is for this reason that he places Muhammad in the No.1 position, even ahead of his Lord Jesus, whom he places 3rd just behind St Paul.
Taken from Sunnah Online with slight additions.
If we examine the Prophet's behavior with his wives before his Messengership and after, we will
realize the reason. We might also conclude that the Prophet undoubtedly had tended the position of the mothers of the Believers. Just as they say, "There is a lady behind every great man" it should also be said, "The better the horse the better the horseman"
The Prophet (pbuh) was the leader, the teacher and the example of the people, men and women in treating his wives kindly. He was also just in spending the nights in turns with each, expenditure, kindness, honoring them and enduring their anger, jealousy and dispute. He used to visit them every morning to preach and teach them and in the evening for amusement. He would periodically assemble with them in their houses altematively. The Prophet (pbuh) also used to serve in his home and attend to his needs himself.
Now, let us highlight some aspects of the Prophet's life as a husband concerning the affairs of his house in which there are many wives of different races, ages and behaviors living, together. We have to bear in mind that such success and prosperity was not confined to his home. Rather, it encompasses all aspects of life: political, economical social. We might hear about great leaders who achieved many progresses in the field of policy and in leading their own people. Nevertheless, if we investigated their marital life we will discover that they could not deal with their wives even if they had only one. Therefore, we are going to highlight only three aspects of the prophet (pbuh) as a husband:
1- The Prophet, the strait husband.
2- The Prophet, the funny husband.
3- The Prophet, the faithful husband.
1. The Prophet, the Funny Husband
In another version, "He was standing especially for me until I became bored and left. Therefore, you should treat the girl who is fond of amusement (providing that it is permissible)4 according to her age." The Prophet (pbuh) assigned same time for amusement with his wives. This was to make them enjoy their life and so as not to feel that the marital life they lead is boring and troublesome. ’Aisha (May Allah be pleased with her) said, "Once I traveled with Allah’s Messenger (pbuh) when I was young and not fat. Then, he asked his companions to go foreward and they did so. Afterwards he said, "Let us race each other." Theretore, I started to run until I won. Later on when I became fat and forgot what had happened, I traveled again with him. He asked his companions to go foreward and they did so. Then he said, "Let us race each other." I forgot what. happened in the first race. I was fat therefore I said, "O messenger of Allah, how could I race you in this case?" However, hesaid, "Let us race." Then, he won the race. He started to laugh and said, "This was opposite the last
The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) would say to 'Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her): "I know when you become angry or pleased of me" She said, "I asked, how could you know that?" He said, "When you are pleased, you say, "No, by the Lord of Muhammad" and when you are angry, you say, "No, by the lord of Ibrahim" (Reported by Bukhari)
One of the scholars said, "Kind treatment with one's wire does not mean not harming her. But it rather means to endure her harm and to be tolerant when she becomes angry, folIowing the Prophet's example the Prophet's wives would argue with him. Moreover, they might abandon him until the night. Once, 'Umar's wite (may Allah be pleased with him) argued with him.' Thereby he said, do you argue with me!? Then, she said, the Prophet's wives (pbuh) would argue with him and he is better than you.
This was the Prophet's style with his wives thus, we should, tollowing the Prophet, be playfull with our wives to relieve them of the hardships of lire and to enrich the love relationship towards them.
2. The Prophet, the Straight Husband
Although he (pbuh) treated his wives kindly, was funny with them and was patient towards their mistakes, he was also straight and decisive when the situation required it. Both tolerance and decisiveness are required in their due time and situation. Allah the Almighty addressed Muhammad (pbuh) by saying:
(O Prophet! Say to thy consorts: if it be that ye desire the life of this world, and its glitter then come! I will provide for your enjoyment and set you free in a handsome manner. But if ye seek Allah and His Messenger, and the Home of the Hereafter, verily Allah has prepared for the well-doers amongst you a great reward.) (Al-Ahzab: 28-29)
The aforementioned verse was revealed when the Mothers of the Believers asked the Prophet (pbuh) for some ease and adornment. Accordingly, the Prophet (pbuh) got angry and swore that he would not approach them for a month. He therefore abandoned them all as a lesson for them. After that, Allah the Almighty revealed the aforementioned verses where they were told that they had no place in the sacred household if they merely wished for ease or worldly glitter. If such were the case, they could be divorced and amply provided for. The Mothers of the Believer's however preferred Allah, His Messenger and the Last Day to the worldly glitter. They lived with the Prophet (pbuh) to carry out their great roles in the best way providing him with peacefulness happiness and cooperating with him in disseminating Islam all over the world.
Let us read the details of one such story: Imam Muslim reported on the authority of Jabir ibn 'Abdullah who said, "Once, Abu Bakr asked for the Prophet's permission to enter his home. He found same people sitting by the Prophet's door whom he (pbuh) did not permit to enter. Then, Abu Bakr asked for permission and the Prophet (pbuh) permitted him to enter. Then came 'Umar who also entered after asking permission. There, he found the Prophet (pbuh) keeping silent and his wives sitting around him. Then Abu Bakr intended to say something in order to make the Prophet (pbuh) laugh. He said, "O Messenger of Allah, I would like you see the daughter of Khadija (when she asked me financial support then I twisted her neck. Then, the Prophet (Pbuh) laughed and said, They are around me, as you see, asking me financial support. Thereupon, Abu Bakr held 'Aisha and started to twist her neck, so did 'Umar with Hafsa. They ('Umar and Abu Bakr) said, "Do you" ask the Prophet something he does not.possess? They then said, by Allah we will never ask him anything he does not have."
The Prophet abandoned them for a month. Then, the above verse was revealed upon him. Therefore, he started to speak with them. He spoke first to 'Aisha by saying:
"O 'Aisha, I would like to offer you something but it is better to consult your parent and not to be rash. She asked, "What is this, Messenger of Allah (pbuh)?" He then recited the verse. She said, "Would I consult my parents concerning you? I would rather choose Allah, His Messenger and the Home of the Hereafter." She added, I would like you inform none of your wives with what you said." He said if any one of them asked me I would tell her. Allah did not send me to be harsh but a teacher.”
The Prophet made them choose and they choose what was good for them: they chose Allah, His Messenger and the Home of the last Day. It was also narrated that the Prophet's offer to his wives, i.e., to be divorced or to stay with him was after the Prophet had abandoned them for a month. Such separation was due to what Hafsa did: she disclosed the Prophet's secret to 'Aisha. Afterwards, he was pleased with them.
3. The Prophet, the Faithful Husband
In general faithfulness is an Islamic virtue. Allah the Almighty described His Holy Entity by
faithfulness in many Qur'anic verses:
(Allah hath purchased of the believers their persons and their goods, for theirs (in return) is the Garden (of paradise): They fight in His cause, and slay and are slain: A promise binding on Him in Truth, Through the Torah, the Gospel, and the Qur'an: And who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah? Then rejoice in the bargain which ye have concluded: that is the achievement supreme.) (At-Tawbah: 111)
Allah also described the believers with such a trait saying:
(Those who fulfil the covenant of Allah and fait not in their plighted word.) (Ar-Ra'd: 22)
Allah, Exalted be He, also commanded His servants to take faithfulness as a shield, a fort and an adornment to their souls and manners by saying: (Fulfil the covenant of Allah when ye have entered into it.) (An-Nahl: 91)
The Prophet (pbuh) set a great example to us in faithfulness and loyalty by being loyal to his wife, Khadija during her life and after her death. When Khadija died, the Prophet (pbuh) kept her memory all his life. 'Aisha, the Mother of the Believers narrated, "Once an old woman visited the Prophet (pbuh) He asked her, "Who are you'?" she replied, Juthama al-Mazniyya." "Thus, you are Hassanah! How are you!? And how do you do after us? The Prophet said. The woman said, "Well, I sacrifice you with my father and mother. When she left, 'Aisha asked him about the woman to know the reason for his hospitality towards that old woman? Then, the Prophet told her that she often used to visit us during the life of Khadija. He added, "Loyalty is of belief" 'Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) also said, "I was never jealous of any of the Prophet's wives (pbuh) except Khadija I never saw her, but the Prophet (pbuh) kept remembering her.
"Sometimes he used to slaughter a lamb, cut it up into pieces, and distribute them as donations memory of Khadijh. Once I said, it seems to me that there is never existed any woman in this world except Khadija. Then, the Prophet (pbuh) would say: she was so and so and she had given me offspring."
Taken from "THE EARLY MUSLIM WOMEN"
In the pre-Islamic period, the pagan Arabs hated to have daughters. They used to bury female children alive. There were only two evil choices to decide on: either to keep a girl as a thing of sufferance and contempt, bringing disgrace on the family or to get rid of her by burying her alive. They believed that sons were only the source of strength and prosperity, but daughters only made them subject to humiliating raids. A striking example of such belief was represented by 'Abdul- Muttalib when he swore that if, he had got ten boys, he would have slain one of them as a sacrifice to Allah.
Meanwhile, the Prophet (pbuh) had four daughters and two sons. The two sons soon died young. The athiests of Quraish rented their personal spite and venom against the noble Prophet (pbuh) by taunting him with the loss of his two infant sons by Khadija. Furthermore, someone said, leave him alone, he would die without leaving a successor.
Accordingly Allah the Almighty revealed the surah of at-Takathur to give a warning against boast and rivalry concerning acquisitiveness of whatever kind, of wealth or offspring. Allah also revealed the surah of al-Kawthar to rebuke the disbeliveers who taunted the Prophet with the loss of his sons. Allah the Almighty says:
(The mutual rivalry for piling up (the good things of this world) diverts you (from the more serious things), until ye visit the graves. But nay, ye soon shall know (the reality).) (At- Tabkathur: 1-3)
The Prophet As A Kind Father
Parents are created loving their children. They give them great concern, affection and care. Without such an innate love, the parents might not keep patient to rear their children. Those who do not love their children are surly odd people. Children need love and care to be brought up in a wholesome manner. The Prophet (pbuh) set a great example in rearing his children. He treated them kindly and affectionately. 'Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) said,
”Once, a. nomad came to the Prophet (pbuh) and said, "You kiss your children but we do not. The Prophet (pbuh) said, "What should I do with you if Allah stripped mercy from your heart!?" (Reported by Al-Bukhari)
Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) also related, "Once the Prophet (pbuh) kissed al-Hassan Ibn Ali before al-Aqra Ibn Habis at-Tamimi. Al-Aqra wondered, "I have ten children but I have never kissed any one of them." Then the Prophet (pbuh) looked at him and said, "Whoever does not have mercy on people, Allah does not have mercy on him." (Reported by Al-Bukhari)
Whenever Fatima (may Allah be pleased with her) enters the Prophet' s room, he used to welcome her tenderly and kiss her. Such a love is not consecrated for his daughters only but also for his grandsons and the whole Muslim children. Al-Bukhari reported that Usama Ibn Zayd Ibn Hantha related that the Prophet (pbuh) would hold me and let me sit on one of his knees and al-Hassan on the other. Then he hugged us and said, "O Allah may You have mercy on them both because I have mercy on them." (Reported by AIl-Bukhari)
Barida (may Allah be pleased with him) , related, "One day, the Prophet (pbuh) was delivering a speech when al-Hassan and al-Hussain came joggling and falling in their red shirts until the Prophet (pbuh) get off and carried them up. Then he said Allah the Ever Truthful said: (Your riches and your children may be but a trial.) (At-Taghabun: 15)
When I noticed these two boys walking and falling I could not keep patient until I interrupted my speech and carried them up." (Reported by at-Tirmidhi)
Al-Bukhari also reported on the authority of Abu Qutalah that he said, "Once the Prophet went out carrying Umamah bint Abu al-As on his noble shoulder. Then he started to pray while she was still on his shoulder. When kneeling, he placed her and when raising he hoisted her.” (Reported by al-Bukhari)
The Prophet (pbuh) would also protrude his tongue to Al-Hassan Ibn Ali who in turn would notice the redness of the Prophet (pbuh) tongue and then hurry to him. When visiting his companions of the Helpers, he would be surrounded by children then he would supplicate Allah for them, wipe their heads and greet them. All of these acts express the prophet's kind treatment and love towards children. Eventually, let us conclude this aspect of the prophet's life by the following astonishing account.
In Sahih Al-Bukhari, it is reported on the authority of Anas Ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) that, "The Prophet (pbuh) entered upon his son, Ibrahim, while he was dying. Thereupon, the eyes of the Prophet (pbuh) started to shed tears. 'Abdur-Rahman ibn 'Awf said to him, "You too, Messenger of Allah!" The Prophet (pbuh) commented, "O ibn 'Awf, it is a mercy and repeated it twice and said, "The eyes shed tears, the heart is grieved, but we do not say anything, except what pleases Allah and for your death we are very sad, O Ibrahim." (Reported by Al-Bukhari)
When having a newbom child, the Prophet set a good example by slaughtering an animal to celebrate his birth. Likewise, he was also an example of patient father when his som died.
The Prophet As A Serious Father
In addition to being kind and affectionate towards his children, he was also a serious one when noticing any mistake or a danger engulfing them. For example, when the Prophet (pbuh) noticed his daughter. Fatima wearing a necklace of gold he got angry and did not greet her as usual. He advised her by saying, "Would you like to be said that the daughter of Allah's Messenger wore a necklace of gold.
Then the Prophet (pbuh) left her and went out. Accordingly, Fatima sent it to the market to be sold and then bought a slave and freed him. When the Prophet knew that he said, "Praise be to Allah who saved Fatima from the fire."
(Reported by an-Nasa'i)
In the hadith concerning the Mukhzumi woman who committed a theft, the Prophet had a serious and severe attitude. No intermediary, however noble even if the issue concerns the nearest people to him, can intercede to abolish or relieve a punishment ordained by Allah. The Prophet (pbuh) rebuked the intercessor, Usama Ibn Zayd, his beloved companion by saying, "Do you intercede to vitiate a punishment leglized by Allah. Then he started to deliver a
speech. He said, "O people, those who lived before you would only punish the weak when committing a theft and leave the noble. By Allah, had Fatima bint Muhammad committed a theft, I would have cut off her hand." (Reported by al-Bukhari)
Taken from "THE EARLY MUSLIM WOMEN"
The Prophet peace be upon him combined both perfection of creation and perfection of manners.
Men's dignity, devotion and estimation of the Messenger of Allâh peace be upon him were unique and matchless. No other man in the whole world has been so honoured and beloved. Those who knew him well, were fascinated and enchanted by him. They were ready to sacrifice their lives for the sake of saving a nail of his, from hurt or injury.
BEAUTY OF CREATION
Describing the Messenger of Allâh peace be upon him who passed by her tent on his journey of migration, Umm Ma'bad Al-Khuza'iyah may Allah be pleased with her said to her husband :
"He was innocently bright and had broad countenance. His manners were fine. Neither was his belly bulging out nor was his head deprived of hair. He had black attractive eyes finely arched by continuous eyebrows. His hair glossy and black, inclined to curl, he wore long. His voice was extremely commanding. His head was large, well formed and set on a slender neck. His expression was pensive and contemplative, serene and sublime.
The stranger was fascinated from the distance, but no sooner he became intimate with him, than this fascination was changed into attachment and respect.
His expression was very sweet and distinct. His speech was well set and free from the use of superfluous words, as if it were rosary of beads.
His stature was neither too high nor too small to look repulsive. He was a twig amongst the two, singularly bright and fresh.
He was always surrounded by his Companions. Whenever he uttered something, the listeners would hear him with rapt attention and whenever he issued a commandment, they vied with each other in carrying it out. He was a master and a commander.
His utterances were marked by Truth and sincerity, free from all kinds of falsehoods and lies."
'Ali bin Abi Talib radiallaahu 'anhu describing him peace be upon him said :
"The Messenger of Allâh peace be upon him was neither excessively tall nor extremely short. He was medium height among his friends. His hair was neither curly nor wavy. It was in between. His face was not swollen or meaty-compact. It was fairly round. His mouth was white. He had black and large eyes with long haired eyelids. His joints (limbs) and shoulder joints were rather big. He had rod-like little hair extending from his chest down to his navel, but the rest of his body was almost hairless. He had thick hand palms and thick fingers and toes.
At walking, he lifted his feet off the ground as if he had been walking in a muddy remainder of water.
When he turned, he turned all. The Prophethood Seal was between his shoulders. He is the Seal of Prophets, the most generous and the bravest of all."
Abu Huraira radiallaahu 'anhu said :
"I have never seen a thing nicer than the Messenger of Allâh peace be upon him. It seems as if the sunlight were moving within his face. I have never seen one who is faster in pace than the Messenger of Allâh peace be upon him. It seems as if the earth had folded up to shorten the distance for him. For we use to wear ourselves out while he was at full ease."
Whenever Abu Bakr May Allah be pleased with him saw him he would say :
"He is faithful, chosen (by Allâh), and calls for forgiveness. He shines like a full moon light when it is far from dark (clouds)."
Umar may Allah be pleased with him said :
"When he got angry his face would go so red that you think it were an inflected red skin-spot with pomegranate grains on both cheeks."
Ibn al-'Abbas May Allah be pleased with him said :
"His two front teeth were split, so whenever he speaks, light goes through them. His neck was as pure and silvery as a neck of doll. His eyelids were long haired, but his beard was thick. His nose was high-tipped, middle- cambered with narrow nostrils. His legs were plain, straight and stretching down. His other limbs were straight too. The two hollows of his soles hardly touch the ground. When he walks away he vanishes soon; but he walks at ease. The way he walks seems similar to one who is leaning forwards and is about to fall down."
Anas may Allah be pleased with him said:
"I have never touched silk, or a silky garment softer than the palm of the Prophet peace be upon him; nor have I smelt a perfume or any scent nicer than his. His sweat was pearl-like."
The heart of every Muslim is filled with the love of the Last Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him and this love of the Messenger of Allâh isan asset him. Love and respect of a person depends on the benefits, we get from him. As the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam is the greatest benefactor of humanity, every Muslim has deepest love for him. Every deed of his life is to be followed by every individual of Muslim Ummah. Highest love for the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam is made a test of our faith.
Allâh (Subhannah wa Ta'aala) has described and explained the status of Muhammad peace be upon him in the Qur'ân:
"Say [O Muhammad sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam to mankind]: If you (really) love Allâh then follow me ( i.e accept Islamic Monotheism, follow the Qur'ân and the Sunnah), Allâh will love you...."(Al Quran 3:31)
From the hadeeth of the Prophet peace be upon him, he said :
"None of you has faith unless I am dearer to him than his father, his son and all mankind."
His speech was the most reliable. He was the keenest and the most attentive to people's trust and was very careful to pay people's due in full.
The Prophet peace be upon him was the most tractable and the most yielding companion, seeing him unexpectedly, you fear him and venerate him. He who has acquaintance with him will like him. He who describes him says:
"I have never seen such a person before, nor after seeing him."
From "The Sealed Nectar" by Shaykh Safi ur-Rahmân al-Mubarakpoori
Abu Huraira radiallaahu 'anhu said: That the companions of the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said to him, 'O Messenger of Allaah! Do you utter the words that excite comically?' The Prophet said, 'I speak nothing but that which is true' (i.e. That is while in a jovial mood I never tell a lie) [Tirmidhi Chapter of Shamail p 17]
Anas ibn Malik radiallaahu 'anhu said: A man came to the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam and asked him to give him a camel to ride on. The Prophet said, 'I will seat thee on the young one of a camel.' The man said, 'Of what use for me will a young one of a camel be?' The Prophet replied, 'These camels are but the young ones of the she camels.' [Abu Nauim, Ibn Asakir in al Munyakhab Vol V p142]
Aisha (May Allah be pleased with her) said: That she accompanied the Prophet on a certain journey. At that time she was a mere girl and was neither fat nor bulky. The Prophet asked the people to move on, and they marched ahead. Then the Prophet said to me, 'Come on, let us have a race'. Aisha says that she ran and remained much ahead of him. The Prophet kept quiet for some time. Later on when Aisha grew fat and loose bodied, she forgot the previous incident. Again she accompanied the Prophet on some journey. The Prophet again asked the people to march ahead, and they moved ahead. Then the Prophet again asked her to have a race with him. This time the prophet defeated her and she lagged behind. Now the prophet laughed and said, 'This is in reply to our previous defeat' [Ahmad, Safwat al Safwah Vol I p68]
Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: That someone asked him if the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam made jovial remarks. Ibn Abbas replied in the affirmative. Then the man asked him to tell him what type of jovial remarks he indulged in. At this Ibn Abbas said, 'Once the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam gave a very loose shirt to one of his wives and asked her to wear it and to praise Allaah. He further asked her to walk around pulling its ends or skirts as a bride does.' [Ibn Asakir and al Kanz Vol IV p43]
Anas radiallaahu 'anhu said: That the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said to him, 'O man! Having two ears.' [Al Bidayah Vol VI p46]
Numan ibn Bashir radiallaahu 'anhu said: That Abu Bakr sought permission to enter the Prophet's apartment. In the mean time he heard Aisha speaking in a louder voice that the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam. When Abu Bakr entered the apartment, he caught Aisha and said, 'Beware! Now on I should never see you speaking thus'. He wanted to slap her. The Prophet held Abu Bakr by the waist and thus saved Aisha. Abu Bakr went out angrily. When Abu Bakr had gone, the Prophet said to Aisha, 'Well, how did I save you from the man'. After a few days absence Abu Bakr again sought permission, and saw that both the Prophet and Aisha were at peace. Then he said, 'Let me enter in your peace as I had entered in your dispute'. The Prophet said, 'We do so, we do so.' [Al Bidayah Vol VI p46]
Hasan radiallaahu 'anhu said: That a certain old woman came to the Prophet and requested him to pray to Allaah to make her enter paradise. The Prophet said, 'O mother of so and so! No old woman shall enter into paradise'. The narrator says that on hearing this the old woman went back weeping. The Prophet said to the people around him to go and tell the old woman that she would not enter into paradise as an old woman. (Tirmidhi) Then he recited the verse:
"Verily we! We have created those (maidens) by a creation and have made them virgins, loving, of equal age" Qur'aan 56: 35-37
In the quotations below, Western writers have used the word Muhammadanism for Islam. The word Muhammadanism is an absolutely unworthy statement for any learned man to use. Prophet Muhammad's mission was to propagate the worship of the One and Only God (in Arabic Allah), the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. His mission was essentially the same as that of earlier Prophets of God. In the historical context, many such terminologies about Muhammad, Islam, and Muslims were borrowed from earlier European writings of the Eleventh to the Nineteenth century, a time when ignorance and prejudice prevailed. The quotations below attest to the facts:
Thomas Carlyle in 'Heroes and Hero Worship and the Heroic in History,' 1840
"The lies (Western slander) which well-meaning zeal has heaped round this man (Muhammad) are disgraceful to ourselves only."
"A silent great soul, one of that who cannot but be earnest. He was to kindle the world, the world’s Maker had ordered so."
A. S. Tritton in 'Islam,' 1951
The picture of the Muslim soldier advancing with a sword in one hand and the Qur'an in the other is quite false.
De Lacy O'Leary in 'Islam at the Crossroads,' London , 1923.
History makes it clear, however, that the legend of fanatical Muslims sweeping through the world and forcing Islam at the point of sword upon conquered races is one of the most fantastically absurd myths that historians have ever repeated.
Gibbon in 'The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire ' 1823
The good sense of Muhammad despised the pomp of royalty. The Apostle of God submitted to the menial offices of the family; he kindled the fire; swept the floor; milked the ewes; and mended with his own hands his shoes and garments. Disdaining the penance and merit of a hermit, he observed without effort of vanity the abstemious diet of an Arab.
Edward Gibbon and Simon Oakley in ‘History of the Saracen Empire,’ London , 1870
"The greatest success of Mohammad’s life was effected by sheer moral force."
“It is not the propagation but the permanency of his religion that deserves our wonder, the same pure and perfect impression which he engraved at Mecca and Medina is preserved after the revolutions of twelve centuries by the Indian, the African and the Turkish proselytes of the Koran....The Mahometans have uniformly withstood the temptation of reducing the object of their faith and devotion to a level with the senses and imagination of man. ‘I believe in One God and Mahomet the Apostle of God’ is the simple and invariable profession of Islam. The intellectual image of the Deity has never been degraded by any visible idol; the honors of the prophet have never transgressed the measure of human virtue, and his living precepts have restrained the gratitude of his disciples within the bounds of reason and religion.”
Lane-Poole in 'Speeches and Table Talk of the Prophet Muhammad'
He was the most faithful protector of those he protected, the sweetest and most agreeable in conversation. Those who saw him were suddenly filled with reverence; those who came near him loved him; they who described him would say, "I have never seen his like either before or after." He was of great taciturnity, but when he spoke it was with emphasis and deliberation, and no one could forget what he said...
Annie Besant in 'The Life and Teachings of Mohammad,' Madras , 1932.
It is impossible for anyone who studies the life and character of the great Prophet of Arabia, who knew how he taught and how he lived, to feel anything but reverence for that mighty Prophet, one of the great messengers of the Supreme. And although in what I put to you I shall say many things which may be familiar to many, yet I myself feel, whenever I reread them, a new way of admiration, a new sense of reverence for that mighty Arabian teacher.
W.C. Taylor in 'The History of Muhammadanism and its Sects'
So great was his liberality to the poor that he often left his household unprovided, nor did he content himself with relieving their wants, he entered into conversation with them, and expressed a warm sympathy for their sufferings. He was a firm friend and a faithful ally.
Reverend Bosworth Smith in 'Muhammad and Muhammadanism,' London , 1874.
"Head of the State as well as the Church, he was Caesar and Pope in one; but he was Pope without the Pope's pretensions, and Caesar without the legions of Caesar, without a standing army, without a bodyguard, without a police force, without a fixed revenue. If ever a man ruled by a right divine, it was Muhammad, for he had all the powers without their supports. He cared not for the dressings of power. The simplicity of his private life was in keeping with his public life."
"In Mohammadanism every thing is different here. Instead of the shadowy and the mysterious, we have history....We know of the external history of Muhammad....while for his internal history after his mission had been proclaimed, we have a book absolutely unique in its origin, in its preservation....on the Substantial authority of which no one has ever been able to cast a serious doubt."
Edward Montet, 'La Propagande Chretienne et ses Adversaries Musulmans,' Paris 1890. (Also in T.W. Arnold in 'The Preaching of Islam,' London 1913.)
"Islam is a religion that is essentially rationalistic in the widest sense of this term considered etymologically and historically....the teachings of the Prophet, the Qur'an has invariably kept its place as the fundamental starting point, and the dogma of unity of God has always been proclaimed therein with a grandeur a majesty, an invariable purity and with a note of sure conviction, which it is hard to find surpassed outside the pale of Islam....A creed so precise, so stripped of all theological complexities and consequently so accessible to the ordinary understanding might be expected to possess and does indeed possess a marvelous power of winning its way into the consciences of men."
Dr. Gustav Weil in 'History of the Islamic Peoples'
Muhammad was a shining example to his people. His character was pure and stainless. His house, his dress, his food - they were characterized by a rare simplicity. So unpretentious was he that he would receive from his companions no special mark of reverence, nor would he accept any service from his slave which he could do for himself. He was accessible to all and at all times. He visited the sick and was full of sympathy for all. Unlimited was his benevolence and generosity as also was his anxious care for the welfare of the community.
Alphonse de LaMartaine in 'Historie de la Turquie,' Paris , 1854.
"Never has a man set for himself, voluntarily or involuntarily, a more sublime aim, since this aim was superhuman; to subvert superstitions which had been imposed between man and his Creator, to render God unto man and man unto God; to restore the rational and sacred idea of divinity amidst the chaos of the material and disfigured gods of idolatry, then existing. Never has a man undertaken a work so far beyond human power with so feeble means, for he (Muhammad) had in the conception as well as in the execution of such a great design, no other instrument than himself and no other aid except a handful of men living in a corner of the desert. Finally, never has a man accomplished such a huge and lasting revolution in the world, because in less than two centuries after its appearance, Islam, in faith and in arms, reigned over the whole of Arabia, and conquered, in God's name, Persia Khorasan, Transoxania, Western India, Syria, Egypt, Abyssinia, all the known continent of Northern Africa, numerous islands of the Mediterranean Sea, Spain, and part of Gaul.
"If greatness of purpose, smallness of means, and astonishing results are the three criteria of a human genius, who could dare compare any great man in history with Muhammad? The most famous men created arms, laws, and empires only. They founded, if anything at all, no more than material powers which often crumbled away before their eyes. This man moved not only armies, legislations, empires, peoples, dynasties, but millions of men in one-third of the then inhabited world; and more than that, he moved the altars, the gods, the religions, the ideas, the beliefs and the souls.
"On the basis of a Book, every letter which has become law, he created a spiritual nationality which blend together peoples of every tongue and race. He has left the indelible characteristic of this Muslim nationality the hatred of false gods and the passion for the One and Immaterial God. This avenging patriotism against the profanation of Heaven formed the virtue of the followers of Muhammad; the conquest of one-third the earth to the dogma was his miracle; or rather it was not the miracle of man but that of reason.
"The idea of the unity of God , proclaimed amidst the exhaustion of the fabulous theogonies, was in itself such a miracle that upon it's utterance from his lips it destroyed all the ancient temples of idols and set on fire one-third of the world. His life, his meditations, his heroic reveling against the superstitions of his country, and his boldness in defying the furies of idolatry, his firmness in enduring them for fifteen years in Mecca, his acceptance of the role of public scorn and almost of being a victim of his fellow countrymen: all these and finally, his flight his incessant preaching, his wars against odds, his faith in his success and his superhuman security in misfortune, his forbearance in victory, his ambition, which was entirely devoted to one idea and in no manner striving for an empire; his endless prayers, his mystic conversations with God, his death and his triumph after death; all these attest not to an imposture but to a firm conviction which gave him the power to restore a dogma. This dogma was twofold the unity of God and the immateriality of God: the former telling what God is, the latter telling what God is not; the one overthrowing false gods with the sword, the other starting an idea with words.
"Philosopher, Orator, Apostle, Legislator, Conqueror of Ideas, Restorer of Rational beliefs.... The founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one spiritual empire that is Muhammad. As regards all standards by which human greatness may be measured, we may well ask, is there any man greater than he?"
Mahatma Gandhi, statement published in 'Young India
I wanted to know the best of the life of one who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind.... I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. When I closed the second volume (of the Prophet's biography), I was sorry there was not more for me to read of that great life.
Sir George Bernard Shaw in 'The Genuine Islam,' Vol. 1, No. 8, 1936.
"If any religion had the chance of ruling over England , nay Europe within the next hundred years, it could be Islam."
“I have always held the religion of Muhammad in high estimation because of its wonderful vitality. It is the only religion which appears to me to possess that assimilating capacity to the changing phase of existence which can make itself appeal to every age. I have studied him - the wonderful man and in my opinion for from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the Savior of Humanity."
"I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness: I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad that it would be acceptable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today.”
Michael Hart in 'The 100, A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons In History,' New York , 1978.
My choice of Muhammad to lead the list of the world’s most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the secular and religious level. ...It is probable that the relative influence of Muhammad on Islam has been larger than the combined influence of Jesus Christ and St. Paul on Christianity. ...It is this unparalleled combination of secular and religious influence which I feel entitles Muhammad to be considered the most influential single figure in human history.
Dr. William Draper in 'History of Intellectual Development of Europe '
Four years after the death of Justinian, A.D. 569, was born in Mecca , in Arabia , the man who, of all men, has exercised the greatest influence upon the human race... To be the religious head of many empires, to guide the daily life of one-third of the human race, may perhaps justify the title of a Messenger of God.
J.W.H. Stab in 'Islam and its Founder'
Judged by the smallness of the means at his disposal, and the extent and permanence of the work that he accomplished, his name in world's history shines with a more specious lustre than that of the Prophet of Makkah. To the impulse which he gave numberless dynasties have owed their existence, fair cities and stately palaces and temples have arisen, and wide provinces became obedient to the Faith. And beyond all this, his words have governed the belief of generations, been accepted as their rule of life, and their certain guide to the world to come. At a thousand shrines the voices of the faithful invoke blessings on him, whom they esteem the very Prophet of God, the seal of the Apostles.... Judged by the standards to human renown, the glory of what mortal can compare with his?
Washington Irving in 'Life of Muhammad,' New York , 1920.
His military triumphs awakened no pride nor vain glory as they would have done had they been effected by selfish purposes. In the time of his greatest power he maintained the same simplicity of manner and appearance as in the days of his adversity. So far from affecting regal state, he was displeased if, on entering a room, any unusual testimonial of respect was shown to him.
Arthur Glyn Leonard in 'Islam, Her Moral and Spiritual Values'
It was the genius of Muhammad, the spirit that he breathed into the Arabs through the soul of Islam that exalted them. That raised them out of the lethargy and low level of tribal stagnation up to the high watermark of national unity and empire. It was in the sublimity of Muhammad's deism, the simplicity, the sobriety and purity it inculcated the fidelity of its founder to his own tenets, that acted on their moral and intellectual fiber with all the magnetism of true inspiration.
Charles Stuart Mills in 'History of Mohammadanism'
Deeply read in the volume of nature, though extremely ignorant of letters, his mind could expand into controversy with the wisest of his enemies or contract itself to the apprehension of meanest of his disciples. His simple eloquence was rendered impressive by a manner of mixed dignity and elegance, by the expression of a countenance where the awfulness of his majesty was so well tempered by an amiable sweetness, that it exerted emotions of veneration and love. He was gifted with that authoritative air or genius which alike influences the learned and commands the illiterate.
Philip K. Hitti in 'History of the Arabs'
Within a brief span of mortal life, Muhammad called forth of unpromising material, a nation, never welded before; in a country that was hitherto but a geographical expression he established a religion which in vast areas suppressed Christianity and Judaism, and laid the basis of an empire that was soon to embrace within its far flung boundaries the fairest provinces the then civilized world.
Stanley Lane-Poole in 'Studies in a Mosque'
He was one of those happy few who have attained the supreme joy of making one great truth their very life spring. He was the messenger of One God, and never to his life's end did he forget who he was or the message which was the marrow of his being. He brought his tidings to his people with a grand dignity sprung from the consciousness of his high office, together with a most sweet humility.
Rodwell in the Preface to his translation of the Holy Qur'an
Mohammad's career is a wonderful instance of the force and life that resides in him who possesses an intense faith in God and in the unseen world. He will always be regarded as one of those who have had that influence over the faith, morals and whole earthly life of their fellow men, which none but a really great man ever did, or can exercise; and whose efforts to propagate a great verity will prosper.
W. Montgomery Watt in 'Muhammad at Mecca ,' Oxford , 1953.
His readiness to undergo persecution for his beliefs, the high moral character of the men who believed in him and looked up to him as a leader, and the greatness of his ultimate achievement - all argue his fundamental integrity. To suppose Muhammad an impostor raises more problems that it solves. Moreover, none of the great figures of history is so poorly appreciated in the West as Muhammad.... Thus, not merely must we credit Muhammad with essential honesty and integrity of purpose, if we are to understand him at all; if we are to correct the errors we have inherited from the past, we must not forget the conclusive proof is a much stricter requirement than a show of plausibility, and in a matter such as this only to be attained with difficulty.
D. G. Hogarth in ' Arabia '
Serious or trivial, his daily behavior has instituted a canon which millions observe this day with conscious memory. No one regarded by any section of the human race as Perfect Man has ever been imitated so minutely. The conduct of the founder of Christianity has not governed the ordinary life of his followers. Moreover, no founder of a religion has left on so solitary an eminence as the Muslim apostle.
Washington Irving 'Mahomet and His Successors'
He was sober and abstemious in his diet and a rigorous observer of fasts. He indulged in no magnificence of apparel, the ostentation of a petty mind; neither was his simplicity in dress affected but a result of real disregard for distinction from so trivial a source.
In his private dealings he was just. He treated friends and strangers, the rich and poor, the powerful and weak, with equity, and was beloved by the common people for the affability with which he received them, and listened to their complaints.
His military triumphs awakened no pride nor vain glory, as they would have done had they been effected for selfish purposes. In the time of his greatest power he maintained the same simplicity of manners and appearance as in the days of his adversity. So far from affecting a regal state, he was displeased if, on entering a room, any unusual testimonials of respect were shown to him. If he aimed at a universal dominion, it was the dominion of faith; as to the temporal rule which grew up in his hands, as he used it without ostentation, so he took no step to perpetuate it in his family.
James Michener in ‘Islam: The Misunderstood Religion,’ Reader’s Digest, May 1955, pp. 68-70.
"No other religion in history spread so rapidly as Islam. The West has widely believed that this surge of religion was made possible by the sword. But no modern scholar accepts this idea, and the Qur’an is explicit in the support of the freedom of conscience."
"Muhammad, the inspired man who founded Islam, was born about A.D. 570 into an Arabian tribe that worshiped idols. Orphaned at birth, he was always particularly solicitous of the poor and needy, the widow and the orphan, the slave and the downtrodden. At twenty he was already a successful businessman, and soon became director of camel caravans for a wealthy widow. When he reached twenty-five his employer recognizing his merit, proposed marriage. Even though she was fifteen years older, he married her and as long as she lived remained a devoted husband."
“Like almost every major prophet before him, Muhammad fought shy of serving as the transmitter of God’s word sensing his own inadequacy. But the Angel commanded ‘Read’. So far as we know, Muhammad was unable to read or write, but he began to dictate those inspired words which would soon revolutionize a large segment of the earth: "There is one God"."
“In all things Muhammad was profoundly practical. When his beloved son Ibrahim died, an eclipse occurred and rumors of God 's personal condolence quickly arose. Whereupon Muhammad is said to have announced, ‘An eclipse is a phenomenon of nature. It is foolish to attribute such things to the death or birth of a human being'."
“At Muhammad's own death an attempt was made to deify him, but the man who was to become his administrative successor killed the hysteria with one of the noblest speeches in religious history: ‘If there are any among you who worshiped Muhammad, he is dead. But if it is God you Worshiped, He lives for ever'.”
Lawrence E. Browne in ‘The Prospects of Islam,’ 1944
Incidentally these well-established facts dispose of the idea so widely fostered in Christian writings that the Muslims, wherever they went, forced people to accept Islam at the point of the sword.
K. S. Ramakrishna Rao in 'Mohammed: The Prophet of Islam,' 1989
My problem to write this monograph is easier, because we are not generally fed now on that (distorted) kind of history and much time need not be spent on pointing out our misrepresentations of Islam. The theory of Islam and sword, for instance, is not heard now in any quarter worth the name. The principle of Islam that “there is no compulsion in religion” is well known.
Jules Masserman in 'Who Were Histories Great Leaders?' in TIME Magazine, July 15, 1974
Perhaps the greatest leader of all times was Mohammad, who combined all the three functions. To a lesser degree Moses did the same.