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the Message Continues ... 3/69
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Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah
May Allah Exalt his Mention
Written by: Abdurrahman al-Sheha
Translated by: Abdurrahmaan Murad
(Taken from Sheik Mahmoud Murad's book 'Common mistakes in Translation')
1. Rubb: Some prefer to translate the term 'Rubb' into 'Lord.' Beside the fact that the latter is a Biblical term referring to the alleged lordship of the slave of Allah,
Prophet Jesus, the word ‘lord’ which is limited to ‘master', 'chief', ‘proprietor’, or 'ruler', can never convey the conclusive signification of the term 'Rubb'. Among
other signification, the term 'Rubb' means, the Creator, the Fashioner, the Provider, the One upon Whom all creatures depend for their means of subsistence, and the One Who gives life and causes death.
2. Deen: The word translated as religion is 'Deen', which in Arabic commonly refers to a way of life, which is both private and public. It is an inclusive term meaning: acts of worship, political practice, and a detailed code of conduct, including hygiene or etiquette matters.
3. Sal'lal'laahu a'laihi wa sal'lam. Some translate it as 'peace be upon him'. This translation is incorrect; the correct translation is, 'may Allah exalt his mention, and render him and his household safe and secure from every derogatory thing'.
All praise is due to Allah, the Rubb of the worlds, and mayAllah exalt the mention of His Prophet, and render him and his household safe and secure from all derogatory things.
When talking about Prophet Muhammad, may Allah exalt his mention, one should keep in mind that he is talking about the greatest individual in history. This is not a baseless claim; for the one who reads his biography, and learns of his mannerisms and ethics, while keeping aside all preconceived notions would certainly reach this conclusion. Some fair and just non-Muslims have reached this conclusion as well.
Professor Hasan Ali, may Allah have mercy on him, said in his magazine 'Noor al-Islam' that a Brahmin colleague of his once told him: 'I recognize and believe that the Messenger of Islam is the greatest and most mature man in history.'
Professor Hasan Ali, may Allah have mercy on him, asked him: 'Why do you consider him as the greatest and most mature man?' He answered: 'No man possessed the characteristics, mannerisms and ethics that he possessed at
one time. He was a king under whom the entire peninsula was unified; yet he was humble. He believed that the dominion belonged to his God alone. Great riches would come to him, and yet he lived in a state of poverty; fire would not be lit in his house for many days and he would stay hungry. He was a great leader; he led small numbers into battle against thousands, and yet he would decisively defeat them. He loved peace agreements, and would agree to them with a firm heart; even though he had thousands of his brave and courageous Companions by his side. Each companion was very brave and could confront a thousand enemies alone, while not feeling the least bit intimidated. Yet, the Prophet was kind-hearted, merciful, and did not want to shed a drop of blood. He was deeply concerned about the affairs of the Arabian Peninsula, yet he did not neglect the affairs of his family, household, or the poor and needy. He was keen to disseminate Islam amongst those who had gone astray. In general, he was a man concerned with the betterment and wellbeing of mankind, yet he did not indulge in amassing worldly fortune. He busied himself with the worship of Allah and loved doings deeds which pleased Allah. He never avenged himself on account of personal reasons. He even prayed for his enemies' wellbeing, and would warn them of the punishment of Allah.
He was an ascetic regarding worldly affairs and would worship Allah throughout the night. He was the brave and courageous soldier who fought with the sword - and the infallible Prophet - the conqueror who conquered nations and countries. He slept on a mat of hay, and a pillow filled with course fibers. People crowned him as the Sultan over Arabs, or King of the Arabian Peninsula, yet his family lived a simple life, even after they received great fortunes; the riches were piled in the Masjid. Fatima complained to him about the strenuous work she did, the grinding stone and water jug which she used to carry - how they had left marks on her body. The Messenger at that time was dividing the female and male slaves amongst the Muslims. He did not give her a portion of that wealth; instead, the Prophet taught her a few words and supplications. His Companion, Umar came to his house and looked in his room, and saw nothing but a hay mat which the Prophet was sitting on, which had left marks on his body. The only provisions in the house were half a Saa' (measure of weight) of barley in a container, and a water skin that hung on the wall - this is all the Messenger of Allah
owned at a time half the Arabs were under his control. When Umar saw this, he could not control himself and wept. The Messenger of Allah, may Allah exalt his mention, said: 'Why are you weeping O Umar?' He replied: 'Why shouldn't I weep - Khosrau and Caesar enjoy themselves in this world and the Messenger of Allah, may Allah exalt his mention, only owns what I see!' He responded: 'O Umar, wouldn't it please you that this is the share of Khosrau and Caesar in this life, and in the Hereafter this pleasure would be for us alone?' When the Prophet examined his troops prior to the occupation of Makkah, Abu Sufyan stood beside al-Ab'bas, the uncle of the Prophet, may Allah exalt his mention, and they looked at the banners of the Muslim army. Abu Sufyan at that time was not a Muslim. He was amazed by the vast number of Muslims; they advanced towards Makkah like a torrent of water. No one could stop them and nothing stood in their way. Abu Sufyan then said to al-Ab'bas: 'O Ab'bas, your nephew has become a grand King!' Ab'bas responded saying: 'This is not kingship, rather prophet hood, and the Message of Islam.'
Ad'ee at-Ta'ee, the son of Ha'tim at-Ta'ee who is the paradigm of generosity, attended the assembly of the Prophet, may Allah exalt his mention, while he was still a Christian. When he saw how the Companions aggrandized and respected the Prophet, he was confused - was he a Prophet or a king? He asked himself, 'is this a king or a Messenger of the Messengers of Allah?' While he was pondering over this, a destitute woman came to the Prophet, and said: 'I wish to tell you a secret.' He said to her: 'which road in Madinah do you want me to meet you in?' The Prophet, may Allah exalt his mention, left with the destitute maid, and took care of her needs. When Ad'ee saw the humbleness of the Prophet, he realized the truth and discarded the crosses that he was wearing and became a Muslim.'
We will mention some statements of the Orient lists concerning Muhammad, may Allah exalt his mention. We as Muslims believe in the Prophet, may Allah exalt his mention, and his Message. We are mentioning these statements for the following two reasons:
a..... To serve as a reminder and admonition for name-sake Muslims who abandoned their Prophet, so that they would heed and return to their Deen.
b.... So that non-Muslims would know who the Prophet is from the statements of their own people, so that they would be guided to Islam.
I ask these people to not hold any preconceived notions when searching for the truth, when reading this or any other Islamic material. I ask Allah to open their hearts and chests to accept the truth, and to show them the right path and inspire them to follow it.
Who is the Messenger, Muhammad, may Allah exalt his mention?
His Lineage: He is Abul-Qasim (father of Al-Qasim) Muhammad, son of Abdullah, son of Abdul-Mutalib. His lineage traces back to the tribe of Adnan, son of Ismael [the Prophet of Allah, the son of Ibraheem, the one whom Allah chose for His love] may Allah exalt their mention. His mother is Aminah, daughter of Wahb.
The Prophet, may Allah exalt his mention, said: 'Indeed Allah chose the tribe of Kinanah over other tribes from the children of Ismail; He chose the Quraish over other tribes of Kinanah; He chose Banu Hashim over the other families of the Quraish; and He chose me from Banu Hashim.' (Muslim #2276)
Thus, the Prophet, may Allah exalt his mention, has the noblest lineage on earth. His enemies attested to this fact; Abu Sufyan, who was the arch enemy of Islam before he became Muslim, attested to this fact in front of Heraclius, the Ruler of Rome.
Abdullah b. Ab'bas, with whom Allah is pleased, reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah exalt his mention, wrote to Caesar and invited him to Islam and sent him a letter with Dihya Al-Kalbi, who handed it to the Governor of Busra who then forwarded it to Caesar.
Caesar as a sign of gratitude to Allah, had walked from Hims to Ilya (i.e. Jerusalem) when Allah had granted Him victory over the Persian forces. So, when the letter of the Messenger of Allah reached Caesar, he said after reading it, "Seek for me anyone of his people, (Arabs of Quraish tribe) if present here, in order to ask him about the Messenger of Allah!" At that time Abu Sufyan bin Harb was in Sham with some men from Quraish who had come (to Sham) as merchants during the truce that had been concluded between the Messenger of Allah; and the infidels of Quraish. Abu Sufyan said, ‘Caesar's messenger found us somewhere in Sham so he took me and my companions to Ilya and we were admitted into Caesar's presence to find him sitting in his royal court wearing a crown and surrounded by the senior Byzantine dignitaries. He said to his translator. "Ask them whom amongst them is a close relation to the man who claims to be a prophet."’ Abu Sufyan added, ’I replied: "I am the nearest relative to him." He asked, "What degree of relationship do you have with him?" I replied, "He is my cousin," and there was none of Bani Abd Manaf in the caravan except myself. Caesar said, "Let him come nearer." He then ordered that my companions stand behind me near my shoulder and said to his translator, "Tell his companions that I am going to ask this man about the man who claims to be a prophet. If he tells a lie, they should contradict him immediately."’
Abu Sufyan added, ’By Allah! Had it not been for shame that my companions brand me a liar, I would not have spoken the truth about him when he asked me. But I considered it shameful to be called a liar by my companions, so I told the truth.’
‘He then said to his translator, "Ask him what kind of family he belongs to." I replied, "He belongs to a noble family amongst us." He said, "Has anybody else amongst you ever claimed the same before him?" I replied, "No."
He said, "Have you ever blamed him for telling lies before he claimed what he claimed?" I replied, "No." He said, "Was anybody amongst his ancestors a king?" I replied, "No." He said, "Do the noble or the poor follow him?" I replied, 'It is the poor who follow him." He said, "Are they increasing or decreasing (daily)?" I replied,
"They are increasing." He said, "Does anybody amongst those who embrace his Deen become displeased and then discard his Deen?" I replied, "No." He said, 'Does he break his promises?" I replied, "No, but we are now at truce with him and we are afraid that he may betray us."
Abu Sufyan added, ’Other than the last sentence, I could not say anything against him.’
‘Caesar then asked, "Have you ever had a war with him?" I replied, "Yes." He said, "What was the outcome of your battles with him?" I replied, "Sometimes he was victorious and sometimes we." He said, "What does he order you to do?" I said, "He tells us to worship Allah alone, and not to worship others along with Him, and to leave all that our fore-fathers used to worship. He orders us to pray, give in charity, be chaste, keep promises and return what is entrusted to us. "'
‘When I had said that, Caesar said to his translator, "Say to him: I asked you about his lineage and your reply was that he belonged to a noble family. In fact, all the Messengers came from the noblest lineage of their nations. Then I questioned you whether anybody else amongst you had claimed such a thing, and your reply was in the negative. If the answer had been in the affirmative, I would have thought that this man was following a claim that had been said before him. When I asked you whether he was ever blamed for telling lies, your reply was in the negative, so I took it for granted that a person who did not tell a lie to people could never tell a lie about Allah. Then I asked you whether any of his ancestors was a king. Your reply was in the negative, and if it had been in the affirmative, I would have thought that this man wanted to take back his ancestral kingdom. When I asked you whether the rich or the poor people followed him, you replied that it was the poor who followed him. In fact, such are the followers of the Messengers. Then I asked you whether his followers were increasing or decreasing. You replied that they were increasing. In fact, this is the result of true faith till it is complete (in all respects). I asked you whether there was anybody who, after embracing his Deen, became displeased and discarded his Deen; your reply was in the negative. In fact, this is the sign of true faith, for when its pleasure enters and mixes in the hearts completely; nobody will be displeased with it. I asked you whether he had ever broken his promise. You replied in the negative. And such are the Messengers; they never break their promises. When I asked you whether you fought with him and he fought with you, you replied that he did and that sometimes he was victorious and sometimes you. Indeed, such are the Messengers; they are put to trials and the final victory is always theirs.
Then I asked you what he ordered you. You replied that he ordered you to worship Allah alone and not to worship others along with Him, to leave all that your fore-fathers used to worship, to offer prayers, to speak the truth, to be chaste, to keep promises, and to return what is entrusted to you. These are really the qualities of a prophet who, I knew (from the previous Scriptures) would appear, but I did not know that he would be from amongst you. If what you say is true, he will very soon occupy the earth under my feet, and if I knew that I would reach him definitely, I would go immediately to meet him; and were I with him, then I would certainly wash his feet. "'
To be continued in issue 70 Article 2
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