|Muslims all over the world commemorate
the birthday of Prophet Muhammad SAW. Prophet Muhammad
is the fortieth descend of Isma'il, the first son
of Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham).
He was born on 12 Rabiul-Awal around 570 AD in Mecca,
Arabia, to Quraish tribe.
Muhammad’s father, Abdullah, passed away before
his birth. Right after his birth, his grand-father,
Abdul Muttalib, took him to Ka’bah and named
him ‘Muhammad’, an uncommon name but
familiar to Arab people.
When Muhammad was five years old, his mother Aminah
passed away. He then was raised by his grandfather,
Abdul Muttalib, who took most tender care of him.
But Abdul Muttalib passed away two years afterwards
and he then was raised by his uncle, Abu Thalib,
according to Abdul Muttalib’s will.
When Muhammad was twelve years old, he accompanied
his uncle Abu Thalib on a merchant journey to Syria
and Busra. It was at Busra that the Christian priest
Bahira met Muhammad. Bahira asked Abu Talib to guard
Muhammad against the hatred of the Jews, for a great
career awaits Muhammad.
Since he was child, Muhammad was well-known for
his correctness of manners and purity of morals
as were rare among the people of Mecca. His good
character and the honorable attitude made him received
the title of ‘Al Ameen’ (The
Muhammad had an almost solitary life from youth
to manhood. The lawlessness common among the Meccans
and the immorality of the Quraish caused feelings
of pity and sorrow in his heart.
When Muhammad was twenty five years old, he traveled
once more to Syria as a merchant of a noble and
rich Quraish widow named Khadijah. Having proved
himself faithful in the trade interests of Khadijah,
that led to their marriage. Khadijah was much older
than Muhammad. This marriage gave him the loving
heart of a woman who was ever ready to comfort him
in his despair and to keep alive within him when
no man believed in him.
Muhammad reached thirty-five years old when Mecca’s
people rebuilt the Ka'bah in 605 AD, the question
arose as to who should have the honor of raising
the holy black stone into its proper place. Each
tribe claimed that honor. The senior person suggested
the disputants to accept for their mediator the
first man to enter from a certain gate. The suggestion
was agreed upon, and the first man who entered the
gate was Muhammad ‘Al-Ameen’. Muhammad’s
advice satisfied all the tribes. He ordered the
stone to be placed on a piece of cloth and each
tribe to share the honor of lifting it up by taking
hold of a part of the cloth. The stone was thus
put in its place, and the rebuilding of the Ka'bah
Khadijah gave birth to three sons and four daughters.
But all his sons died in childhood. As for Muhammad’s
private life, he is described to have been ever
helpful to the needy and the helpless. Muhammad
set a good example of kindness, which created a
salutary effect upon his people.
For years after his marriage, Muhammad had been
accustomed to secluding himself in a cave in Mount
Hira, a few miles from Mecca. To this cave he used
to go for prayer and often spent the whole nights
in deep thought. It was during one of those seclusions
on the 17th day
of Ramadhan that Muhammad received his first revelation
of The Holy Qur'an. Angel Jibreel (Gabriel)
came to tell Muhammad that Allah had appointed him
as His last Messenger and Prophet. Muhammad was
trembling as Angel Djibreel asked him to read the
verses of Qur’an (Surah
Muhammad returned to Mecca and told Khadijah what
he had seen and what had happened. Khadijah calmed
and cheered him up. She then went to her cousin
Waraqa Ibn Naufal, who was old and blind and knew
the Scriptures of the Jews and Christians. When
Khadijah told him of what she had heard, he cried
out: "Holy! Holy! Verily,
this is the Namus (The Holy Spirit) who came to
Moses. He will be the prophet of his people. Tell
him this and bid him to be brave at heart."
When Waraqa and Muhammad met in the street afterward,
Waraqa spoke of his faith and trust: "I
swear, Allah has chosen you to be the prophet of
this people. They will call you a liar, they will
persecute you, they will banish you, and they will
fight against you. Oh, that I could live to those
days. I would fight for these." And
Waraqa kissed Muhammad on the forehead.
Muhammad arose and engaged himself in the work to
which he was called. Khadijah was the first to accept
his mission. She was to believe in the revelations,
to abandon the idolatry of her people and to join
him in purity of heart and in offering up prayers
to Allah the Almighty.
The first vision was followed during which Muhammad
suffered much mental depression. The Angel Djibreel
spoke to the grieved heart of hope and trust. Muhammad
arose and began to preach. Khadijah was the first
one to accept his mission. She was to believe in
the revelations, to abandon the idolatry and to
join Muhammad in offering up prayers to Allah the
After Khadijah, his young cousin, Ali Ibn Abu Thalib,
was the next one to accept his mission. The Prophet
Muhammad used often to go into the desert around
Mecca with Khadijah and Ali. After Ali, the Prophet
Muhammad's adopted son Zaid Ibn Haritha became a
convert to the new faith who was followed by Abu
Bakr, a leading member of the Quraish tribe. Abu
Bakr was an honest, wealthy merchant, and was two
years younger than the Prophet. His acceptance of
the new faith caused great moral effect. Soon after,
five notables declared themselves to accept Islam.
Several converts also came from lower classes of
the Arabs to embrace Islam.
For three years, the Prophet preached very quietly
to set free his people from the worship of idols.
After three years of constant but quiet struggle,
only thirty people converted. Previously, the Prophet
preached quietly and discreetly. The Prophet now
decided to appeal publicly to the Mecca’s
people, requesting them to abandon their idolatry.
Now the Prophet and his followers became subject
to some persecution and humiliation. The Quraish
prevented the Prophet from offering his prayers
at the Sacred Ka'bah. They pursued him wherever
he went and threw him and his folowers with dirt.
All these attempts didn’t weaken the Prophet.
The Prophet was full of confidence in his mission,
even when on several occasions he was put in imminent
danger of losing his life.
At this time, Hamza, the youngest son of Abdul Muttalib,
adopted Islam. Hamza was a man of great bravery,
a fearless warrior, generous and true, and became
a devoted Muslim. The Prophet continued preaching
to the Arabs in a most gentle and reasonable manner.
He called the people to abandon their abominations.
His mission was opposed by Quraish tribe. During
this time, all other converts were subjected to
different sorts of torture. Some of them were thrown
into prison, starved, and then flogged. The hill
of Ramada and the place called Bata thus became
scenes of cruel torture.
Persecution by the Quraish grew fiercer every day
and the sufferings of the Prophet's followers became
unbearable. He had heard of the righteousness, tolerance,
and hospitality of the neighboring Christian king
of Abyssinia. He recommended such of his followers
to seek refuge in the kingdom of Al Najashi (Negus).
Some of followers of Islam sailed to Abyssinia where
they received a very kind reception from the Negus.
This is called the first hijrah (migration)
in the history of Islam. These emigrants were soon
followed by many of their fellow sufferers.
While the followers of the Prophet sought safety
in foreign lands against the persecution of their
people, the Prophet continued his warnings to the
Quraish more strenuously than ever. On the other
hand, the Mecca’s people were more than ever
furious at the Prophet's increasing preaching against
their religion. They asked his uncle Abu Talib to
stop him and warned Abu Talib that if he would not
do that, he would be excluded from the communion
of his people.
Abu Talib neither wished to separate himself from
his people, nor forsake his nephew. He spoke to
the Prophet very softly and begged him to abandon
his mission. The Prophet firmly replied: "O
my uncle, if they placed the sun in my right hand
and the moon in my left hand to cause me to give
up my task, verily I would not stop.”
After hearing what the Prophet had said, Abu Thalib
then declared his intention to protect the Prophet
against any menace or violence.
During this period, Umar Al-Khattab adopted Islam.
Previously, he had been a violent enemy of the Prophet
and Islam. He converted to Islam after hearing his
sister reciting Qur’an in her house, where
he had gone with the intention of killing her for
Several years later, Abu Talib and Khadijah passed
away. The Prophet weighed down by the loss of
Abu Talib, his guardian who had protected him
against his enemies, and his beloved wife Khadijah,
his most encouraging companion.
In the twelfth year of his mission, the Prophet
made his night journey from Mecca to Jerusalem,
and to heaven. His journey was known in history
as Isra’ Mi’raj (Ascension).
It was at this time that Allah ordered the Muslims
to pray the five daily prayers.