Sep 18, 2009

Last Prophet Life - Prophet Muhammad s.a.w

The life of Last prophet(Peace be upon him)

The life of the last Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.
Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam: Its means peace be upon him), peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was a mercy to the universe. His life ever shines as a symbol of light and guidance for all time and for all people. He was the last messenger of God to humanity, the seal of the prophets. To the Oneness of God he called:

La Ilaha Illalla Muhammad-ur-Rasullullah
There is no God but Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah

This is the life and message of Islam.
Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam), the last prophet, was born in the harsh desert land of Arabia almost 600 years after Jesus (peace be upon him) in the city of Makkah located in a deep valley surrounded by a curtain of brown and black jacket mountains.

Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was an orphan. His father had died before he was born so he was raised and weaned in the desert according to the Arab custom. By the tender age of six, his mother Amina also died and he was left all alone to be brought up by his grandfather Abdul Muttalib and later under the care of his paternal uncle Abu Taalib.

Makkah was an important and famous city primarily because within it stood the Holy Kaaba, the first house ever set up for mankind to glorify the One true God constructed some 3000 years earlier by the Prophet Abraham with the help of his first son Ishmael (peace be upon them). It was here in this deserted and barren valley that Abraham according to Divine Will has settled his wife Hagar along with their child Ishmael. So it was, that with the passage of time, Makkah gradually became a city of pilgrimage and a flourishing center of culture and trade, through which passed the great trade caravans between Syria in the North and Yemen in the South.

Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was a direct descendent of Abraham through Ishmael belonging to the noble and renowned family of Bani Hashim. As a shepherd boy, Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam), used to tend the sheep and goats around the hills of Makkah under the bright burning sun. A familiar training it seems for those destined to fulfill the role of Prophethood.

As a young man, Muhammad became known to everybody as Al-Amin, the trustworthy, because of his honesty and noble character. His uncle loved him dearly and would take him on trading journeys to Syria. This gave Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) the opportunity to learn how to earn his living as a trader. He managed business well. Although he was relatively poor, Muhammad's truthfulness and generous nature made him trusted and loved by everyone who knew him.

There lived in Makkah, one of the most honorable of ladies, her name was Khadija. Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) had worked for her. At the age of 25, he received from her an indirect proposal of marriage although she was a senior and twice widowed, Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) accepted her offer. They were married and lived a happy life. She bore him 2 sons and 4 daughters. Sadly, the 2 sons died in infancy. Nevertheless, it was an ideal marriage and they lived together a blissfully perfect family life.

Muhammad's company and wise counsel were greatly sought after. It is said that once when the sacred Kaaba was being rebuilt after serious floods had damaged its walls, a disagreement arose among the four main tribes of Quraish as to which tribe should have the honor of replacing the sacred black stone. A skirmish was about to begin when one of the elders suggested a solution. "Make the first to enter the gate, your judge" he said. They all looked and to their great joy, Muhammad entered. "It is Al-Amin, the trust worthy" they cried. Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) saw what was happening and he asked for a piece of cloth to be brought. He laid the black stone upon the cloth and told the members of each of the four tribes to hold the corners of the cloth and raise the stone as he himself eased it into its position. So he ended the quarrel and with it the threat of war.

The Arabs of his time had many great qualities. They were brave, generous, loyal and yet they were often involved in petty feuds fighting endless battles among themselves ready to shed blood on flimsies pretense. They had little respect for the weak, the orphans or widows and frequently indulge in heavy drinking and frivolity. Because of the important status given to the sons, many fathers practiced the evil custom of burying the unwanted daughters at birth. But at the root of all evils, lay polytheism. Polytheism, the cult of worshipping idols was practiced by almost everyone. The everlasting religion and legacy of Abraham, the worship of one true God alone had been buried and forgotten with time. Over the years, some 360 idols and statutes of false gods had been installed in and around the Holy Kaaba worshipped as lords and intercessors. Even the followers of Moses and Jesus have diverged from the universality and teachings of the pure monotheistic faith of Abraham and had divided themselves into many separate sects and tribes.

But Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was an exceptional figure. He did not take part in any of this. It became his habit in later years to retreat to an isolated cave in the nearby mountain called Hira, not far from Makkah to bear his heart and pray in search of truth. With no sound but the stirring wind, he would contemplate in his solitude, the signs of the universe. It was here one night during the month of Ramadan, at the age of 40, that the Almighty called Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) to his service. This night, known as Laila-tul-Qadar, the night of power, the spirit of truth was to descend with God's decree and light for humanity, the Quran, a new chapter for the world was about to unfold.

The white veining moon was shining brightly when suddenly he perceived a presence. Out of the stillness of the night a voice was heard "read". Muhammad was shaken "I cannot read", he replied. The earth seemed to tremble as the voice repeated the command pressing him on, "Read". "I cannot read", he felt himself frozen with fear unable to move. "Read" the awesome voice commanded again. "What shall I read?" Then suddenly he was released. At that moment all time and space were suspended. The heavens and the earth joined, peace, as mankind stood at the threshold of a new dawn.

Surah Al-Alaq (Chapter 92 of Holy Quran: The Book of God) -- Verses 1 to 5

"Read, in the name of your Lord who Creates, Creates man from a clot of blood. Read and your Lord is most Generous who teaches by the pen, teaches man that which he knew not."

These were the first five jeweled verses of the Glorious Quran, the voice was that of Angel Gabriel, the spirit of faith and truth who had been sent to the last of the God's prophet. The mission had just begun for Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam), the Messenger of Allah, a mercy to the worlds.

The Prophet Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) had just received first words from his Lord on mount Hira. He rushed down from the mountain, his face shining with beads of sweat heart beating fiercely, the verses of Quran still echoing in his soul. "What kind of recitation was this? What kind of words?" He ran to Khadija "Cover me, cover me". She gently comforted him as he explained what had just happened. "I fear that something may befall me", he said. "Never by Allah", said his wife faithfully, "Allah will never disgrace you, you keep good relations with all your relatives, you help the poor and the needy, you serve your guests generously and assist the deserving, the unfortunate ones."

Sometime later Khadija took him to her cousin a learned scribe named Waraqa who knew the Torah and the Gospel well. After describing to him what had happened that night, the old man without hesitation affirmed that "Indeed this must have been a meeting with arch Angel Gabriel whom Allah has sent to Moses. I wish I were young and could live up to the time when your people turn you out", the old wise man said. He knew that the prophet foretold in the earlier scriptures had arrived. So began the call of the Last Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) which was to influence the world for ever more and herald a new age in the history of human consciousness and progress, the birth of Islam.

The first to believe in the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was his wife Khadija followed shortly after by his young beloved cousin Ali, son of Abu Taalib, who lived with them. Most were violently opposed but some willingly opened their hearts and accepted the call like Muhammad's closest friend and companion Abu Bakr and his servant Zaid and others. After a while, as the revelations of the Quran continued, the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was commanded to publicly deliver the message of Islam and recite the verses which has been sent to him.

translation of Surah Fatih: Chapter 1 of the Holy Quran, the Book of God)

"In the Name of Allah, The Beneficent, The Merciful

Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds

The Beneficent, the Merciful

Master of the Day of Judgement

You alone we worship and You alone we ask for help

Show us the straight path, the path of those whom You have favored

Not those who earned Your anger, nor those who go astray"

One day, the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) climbed to the top of Safa, a small hill close to the sacred Kaaba and called after his kinsmen, the people of Quraish. As they gathered around him, they asked him, "What was the matter?" Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) answered, "Tell me O men of Makkah if I were to inform you that I see an army on the other side of this hill, would you believe me?" "Indeed", they all answered, "for we trust you and we know you never tell a lie." "Then", Muhammad said, "Know that I am a Warner and that I warn of severe punishment. God has commanded me to warn you, my nearest kin, that I can guarantee you no good on earth or in heavens."

The crowd on hearing this became dumb struck. As they stood silent and still under the heat of the sun, Abu Lahab, the prophet's uncle, finally burst out: "May you perish." They all turned their backs and dispersed leaving Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) standing alone. The people of Makkah listened to these new words calling them to bow to Allah and to enter the religion of love and submission, Islam. But soon they became sharply divided. Many began to reject the glaring truth. After years of knowing him as the most kind and pious among them, they started insulting him and ridiculing him and even calling him insane. Yet with all this abuse heard upon him, he would never speak a bad word in return. He used to say "He who believes in Allah and the last day, should be good to his guest, He who believes in Allah and the last day, should honor his neighbor, and He who believes in Allah and the last day, should say what is good or be silent." Nothing would deter him. He continued patiently inviting his townsfolk to what was the basic pillar of Islam to bear witness that there was no God worthy of worship but Allah, that he Muhammad was the Messenger of Allah.

translation of Surah Ikhlas: : Chapter 112 of the Holy Quran, the Book of God)

"Say, He is Allah the One
Allah the Eternal, Absolute
He begets not, nor was He begotten
And there is none comparable to Him"

The more he called on them to submit to one and Only God, the more enraged the tribal chiefs became. "What", they said, "Has he made all our gods into One God. This is a strange thing indeed." What was even more surprising to them was that these miraculous new words, the passages of the Quran, were coming to a man whom they knew was unlettered. Never had Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) learned to read or write, a skill that only few could claim among the Arabs at that time. So how then these words so matchless in their beauty and articulation coming to him.

The chiefs of the Quraish, the most influential tribe in Makkah, became more and more enraged. However at one of their council meetings they decided to ask the Prophet's uncle and guardian Abu Taalib to mediate, to try and stop him from calling people away from their customs and the religion of their forefathers. Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) when he heard this, was emotionally moved because of the love and affection he felt for his dear uncle but his answer was calm and clear: "By Allah if they place the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left, I would never abandon this course until Allah makes it victorious or I die therein."

Slowly, one by one, the number of Muslims grew under the guidance of the beloved Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam). This first noble group of believers followed the way of righteousness and submission. Their love for the truth shown out, illuminating the dull paganistic society of that time. The pursuit of worldly gain, the main objective of earthly life and ambitions was shunned in favor of pursuit of eternal life and wisdom. "Whosoever follows the path to seek knowledge therein" the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) said "Allah will make easy for him the path to paradise."

Yet Muslims were made the object of persecution from the very beginning. Those who were poor of little means and had no position suffered the most. They were mocked and laughed at. But when ridicule failed, the disbelievers resorted to physical attacks and torment. Stones and dirt were hurled at them. Some 100 Muslims were permitted to leave Makkah abandoning their homes and seeking refuge in neighboring Abyssinia, a Christian land.

For those who stayed behind, the persecution increased. Bilal, a black Abyssinian slave who had accepted Islam was laid outstretched on the burning sand at the behest of his brutal master, while large heavy rocks were placed on his chest. "Where is your God now?" the disbelievers taunted him. But no amount of torture could shake his faith. The believers would never give up Islam.

So a new tactic was adopted by the chiefs of Makkah. The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) and his followers were evicted and forced to live in a confined section of town. No provisions were allowed to get through to them. They had to suffer long torturous periods without food or water. Not eating for days or even weeks on ends. This boycott began in the 7th year after the commencement of Quranic revelation and lasted for 3 long years. But by the Grace of Allah, some kind hearts among the persecutors could not tolerate the victimization any longer. Their will gradually softened and the ban was finally lifted.

Again the people were able to observe and listen to the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam). He was the most handsome of men of medium height, black hair and beard, his teeth shown gleaming white when he smiled. But it was his character and perfect behavior which made the greatest impression. His words were always full of guidance and wisdom. The customs and traditions of the tribal society in Arabia were shaken and revised by the extraordinary spirit of his teachings. He said: " Support your brother whether he is doing wrong or he is being wronged." A man enquired, "O Messenger of Allah, I can help him if he has been wronged but how can I support him if he is doing wrong?" He said "Prevent him from doing wrong. That is how you support him."

Muhammad's kindness and merciful nature was also unparalleled. Often when he passed by a group of children, he would pass his hands affectionately over their heads and sometimes would even join in their innocent games. He said: "There are for Allah one hundred mercies of which only one was sent down among the Jinn, mankind, beasts, birds and insects. Through it they incline towards each other. Through it, they show mercy to one another and through it they show affection to their younger ones. And Allah has reserved for Himself ninety nine mercies with which He will show mercy to His servants on the day of resurrection."

He gave special place and honor to women. In one stroke, Islam raised them to a position unimaginable in the society at that time guaranteeing them rights and liberties not equal anywhere. "Paradise lies beneath the feet of your mother" he said. But the majority still persisted in their ways of ignorance and continued to reject him.

It was during the 10th year of the mission that Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was to experience the greatest sorrow of his life. His Uncle Abu Taalib, who adopted and provided him the much needed family protection and support died. This was followed soon after by the death of his loving wife, Khadija. To add to his grief, the people of Taif to whom he had journeyed to convey the message of Islam had mercilessly rejected him, sending raffians to pelt him with stones making his body stream with blood.

It was in this devastating and difficult time that the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was to be given one of the greatest and most uplifting honors by Allah, Glorified and Exalted as He. This was a miraculous night journey. On that special night, the Angel Gabriel came to Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) and woke him from his sleep. Gabriel then made him mount what looked like a dazzling white creature named Al-Buraq. Soon with lightening speed Muhammad was transported to Masjid Al-Aqsa, the distant place of prayer in Jerusalem. There, on this blessed site in the heart of Jerusalem, Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was met by an assembly of earlier prophets who gathered behind him as he led them in prayer.

From there, Gabriel took him and they ascended through the seven heavens to witness the unseen mysteries of the universe and to see some of the greatest signs of Allah. According to tradition, the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) said, " When I entered the lowest heaven I saw a man sitting there with the spirits of men and women passing before him. To one on the right, he would smile saying 'a good spirit from a good body' and to another on the left he would frown and say 'a bad spirit from a bad body'. I said, 'Who is this O Gabriel?' He replied, 'This is Adam and the persons on the right and left are his offspring. Those on the right are the people of Paradise, those on the left are the people of hell fire.' Then Gabriel ascended with Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) through each subsequent heaven meeting different Prophets as he went. Jesus, John, Joseph, Aaron, Moses, peace be upon them all. Until finally they reached the seventh heaven. There was a man sitting on the throne at the gate of the immortal mansion. 'Never have I seen a man more like myself', said the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam). 'This was my father Abraham'. Then Gabriel appeared to the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) in all his angelic light and splendor. They had reached the lot tree of the utmost boundary, the Sidrat-ul-Muntaha veiled by mysterious colors, inexhaustibly indescribable.

Translation) Chapter 53 of the Holy Quran, the Book of God -- Verses 11 to 18

"The heart falsified not what he saw
Would you then dispute with him concerning what he sees
And Verily he saw him yet another time by the Lot tree of the utmost boundary
Near it the garden of Abode, when the Lot tree was shrouded by whatever in shrouded
The sight did not swerved nor did it exceed, Verily he saw of the Sign of his Lord, the Greatest."

Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) had soared to the zenith of Divine heights. It was in this night of supreme spiritual and bodily elevation that he received from Allah Almighty, the second noble pillar of Islam: the five daily prayers. And that, which was given to no Prophet ever before, the whole world was made a place for prostration and prayer for Muslims. This was Al-Isra Wal Mairaj the night journey and ascension.

On his return the next morning, after hearing about this miraculous journey, the disbelievers now rejoiced in the opportunity to jeer and mock Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) even more. They had called him a mad man, a sooth sayer, a poet and now a liar. Persecution increased and life grew unbearable for Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) and his companions. They were constantly in danger so they quietly prepared to leave Makkah.

A delegation of those who had embraced Islam from the city of Yasrab (Yathrib), 250 miles away, offered their homes and welcomed all Muslims to live in the safety of their city. They especially wanted the Prophet to bring peace to their city torn by tribal feuds and unrest. The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) accepted. This was to be the Hijra, the migration, the turning point in Islamic history, from which date the Islamic calendar began, the birth of the first Islamic state and thus Yasrab came to be called the city of the Prophet Madina-tun-nabi.

Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam), the Messenger of Allah, after 13 years of inviting to Islam and after suffering bitter persecution at the hands of pagan Arabs left Makkah together with the small community of Muslims and migrated to where they had been offered peace and security in the city of Medina. Thus began the second major phase in the mission and life of the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam).

In Medina, the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) became the head of state. From here Islam was to blossom. A new, brilliant and just social order was born. At the base was the mosque. Hereto Islam's vision for peace amongst all the people of the world of all faiths and races took shape in what was effectively the first constitution and charter of human rights and liberties ever. It guaranteed every citizen freedom, security and justice. Freedom of conscious and worship for Muslims as well as non-Muslims alike, Security and protection from any outside threat or attack, Justice and the abolition of all crimes and immoral practices.

Translation) Chapter 8 Al-Anfal of the Holy Quran, the Book of God -- verse 74

"Those who believed and migrated and fought for the cause of Allah and those who took them in and help them, these are the believers in truth, for them is pardon and generous provision."

Charity was one of the main features of this new society. Greed and selfishness became strangers and were replaced by compassion and concern for all living things. The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) said: "Doing justice between two people is a charity, and assisting a man upon his burden and lifting his baggage is a charity, and answering a questioner with mildness is a charity, and removing that which is inconveniences to man such as thorns and stones is a charity and a smile to your brother is a charity."

Once a man came upto Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) and begged him for some sheep. There were large number of them grazing between two hills so he ordered that they were all to be given to him. When the man returned to his village he said: "O People, embrace Islam for by Allah, Muhammad gives so much he does not fear poverty."

Here in Medina, another two more important pillars of Islam were established. The Muslims were ordered to pay Zakat, the wealth tax due to help the poor and the needy. And fasting in the month of Ramadan. During this period, the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) remarried. He was proposed to by many, but apart from Aisha, the daughter of Abu Bakr, his wives were mainly widows of Muslims who were killed or martyred. However, he always had a special place and memory in his heart for Khadija, his first wife and beloved partner.

The area of Medina was also populated by a number of Jewish tribes. The Muslims already felt a close affinity with these people of the book, as the coming of the Prophet had been foretold in Torah. God had said to Moses: "I will raise them a Prophet among their brethren like unto thee and I will put my words in his mouth and he shall speak to them all that I shall command him." Who in the Old Testament were the brethren of the sons of Israel if not the sons of Ishmael? Who else could have been the Prophet like unto Moses? Who was most similar to him then the Prophet Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam).

And according to the sayings of Jesus, the prophecy was also fulfilled: "If I go not away, the comforter will not come unto you. But if I depart he will be sent unto you. He will guide you into all truth for he shall not speak of himself but whatever he shall hear that shall he speak."

Upto this time, Muslims had even prayed in the same direction as the people of the book, facing the Holy city of Jerusalem. The believers were now ordered to turn their faces for prayers towards the Holy mosque in Makkah, the Kaaba. This historic change in the direction of the prayer symbolizes the distinction and the honor given to the new Muslim Ummah. As the Muslims were returning to the original faith of Abraham so in prayer they turn to the first house of Allah erected by him.

Apart from the people of the book, the Makkan chiefs too were displeased. They were still determined to wipe out the new Muslim community and were plotting to attack Medina. But now at last, after years of persecution and torture, permission was given by Allah for Muslims to defend themselves.

Translation) Chapter 22 Al-Hajj of the Holy Quran, the Book of God -- Verse 39

"Permission is given on to those who are being fought against because they have been wronged and indeed Allah is able to give them victory."

The result was the battle of Badr in the second year after the Hijra in the month of Ramadan. The Makkan army attacked with 1000 men outnumbering the small Muslim army 3 to 1. But by the Will of Allah, the outcome was a spectacular victory for the Muslims. Some of the Makkan chiefs who had led the persecution against the Muslims were killed. Others were taken prisoners and subsequently ransomed. For the first time in history, the prisoners of war were fed and sheltered like their captors and treated humanely. This battle was a turning point. The strength and courage of the believers shocked the Makkans and their allies. But they were still determined to destroy Islam.

In battle after battle, the Muslims proved that they can withstand all attacks. After a narrow escape for the believers in the battle of Uhud, the following year the Quraish then planned a once and for all assault to destroy the Muslims. They plotted with certain Bedouin and Jewish tribes and hypocrites within Medina itself. In the 5th year of Hijra, a force of more than 10000 marched on Medina. However, the Muslims were ready. On the advice of Salman, the Persian, they had prepared to defend themselves by digging a system of wide trenches around the city. The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) himself took part in this and while he was digging, they sang a refrain:

After a month long siege and unable to penetrate the Muslim defenses, the pagan army became impatient. Gradually distrust began to spread between the allied forces. Quarrelling amongst themselves and suffering from severe weather conditions, they finally packed up their tents and withdrew. This was a great victory for Islam. Medina was never again attacked.

In the following year, the 6th after Hijra, a truce was made between the Makkans and the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam). Even though the terms were weighed heavily on the side of the Quraish, this was to be another triumph for Islam, and it was called the treaty of Hudaibeya. The period of peace which followed gave many non-Muslims the chance to see for themselves the blessings of the Islamic way of life. As a result, an enormous number of Makkans and the tribes embraced Islam.

One day, a man from a distant region with ruffled hair came to the Messenger of Allah to ask about Islam. The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) said: "You have to offer prayers 5 times in one day and a night". The man asked: "Is there any more?" The Prophet replied: "No but if you want to offer extra prayers, you can." He continued: "You have to fast during the day light hours in the month of Ramadan." The man asked: "Is there anymore fasting?" He replied: "No but if you want to offer extra fast, you may." Then the Prophet further said to him: "You have to pay Zakat, obligatory charity." The man asked: "Is there anything other than Zakat for me to pay?" The Messenger of Allah (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) said: "No unless you want to give alms of your own." At that point, the man said, "By Allah, I will neither do less nor more than this." The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) remarked: "If he is true to what he says than he will be successful."

During this period, the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) sent letters to various rulers, including the emperors of the two superpowers of that time: Persia and Byzantine, inviting them to Islam. The emperor Herecules was on his way to Jerusalem when he received the letter bearing the Prophet¡¯s seal. It read: "From Muhammad, Messenger of Allah to Herecules, emperor of Byzantine. Peace be unto him who follows true guidance. I invite you to Islam. Accept it and you will have peace and prosperity and Allah will give you double reward. If you reject, the sins of your subjects will be on you." And the letter ended with the verse of Quran:

Translation) Chapter 3 Al-Imran of the Holy Quran, the Book of God -- Verse 64

"Say O People of the Book, come to common terms between us and you that we worship none but Allah and we associate no partners with Him and that we will not set up from amongst ourselves others as lords besides Allah. Then if they turn away say: Bear witness that we are Muslims submitting to Him."

Even though the emperor recognized that this was indeed the Prophet who according to the scriptures had been awaited he felt compelled by loyalty to his chiefs and courtiers to reject the message. And thus sadly the winds of fate blew closed the door. The good tidings went unheeded and the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) words inevitably became fulfilled.

Meanwhile in Arabia, Islam's strength was rapidly growing. Two years after the truce with the Makkans was made and as its terms were repeatedly violated by the Quraish, Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) decided to march on Makkah with an army of about 10,000. What happened was to be an all time marvel and a landmark in the history of religious conquests. The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) captured the city with hardly a single drop of blood being shed. He rode through the gate mounted on a camel with his head bowed in humility as all his trembling enemies looked on. Yet to their amazement, he preceded to forgive all those who uptil then were bitter enemies of Islam. And announced the general amnesty. This was the day of victory and the final chapter of the Prophet's life was about to begin.

The conquest of Makkah was over. The enemies of Islam had surrendered and were graciously pardoned. Witnessing the merciful behavior and character of the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam), the people of Makkah voluntarily accepted Islam. The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) entered the Holy precinct of the sacred Kaaba. There stood all of the 360 idols and stones, the false gods which the Arabs had bowed and worshipped so long. One by one, on the order of the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam), the idols were smashed into pieces. Thus finally erasing the symbols of idolatry from the Arabian Peninsula. At last, this house, the sacred Kaaba erected by the noble Prophet Abraham and his first son Ishmael was purified and rededicated to the worship of the One and Only God, Allah Lord of all the worlds.

Translation) Chapter 9 Taubaof the Holy Quran, the Book of God -- Verse 33

"He it is, Who has sent His messenger with the guidance and religion of truth that He may exalt it above all religions even though the pagans may detest it."

It was now 21 years since the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) has started calling humanity to recognize the one Transcendent God and the Quranic revelation had begun. Now Muhammad's mission was coming to a close. He stayed in Medina which effectively became the capital of the new Muslim world. Delegations from all over Arabia came to embrace Islam at the hands of the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam). In addition, he sent group of believers to various provinces and lands inviting them to enter Islam. Even with all of Arabia and surrounding lands at his command, he continued to live as a humble servant of Allah. He used to patch his own sandals, sow his clothes and serve his family like any ordinary man. It was in the 7th century ten years after the Hijra, the Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) was nearing the end of his life on earth. That was the year he performed Hajj the pilgrimage, the 5th and final pillar of Islam.

Under the scorching sun on the plains of Arafat, Prophet Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) delivered his final sermon:

"O People, listen to my words carefully for I know not that after this year I shall ever meet you again at this place. O People, your lives and your property are sacrosanct until you meet your Lord, as are this Holy place, this Holy day and this Holy month. Remember that you will indeed meet your Lord and answer for your deeds, so be aware whoever of you is holding a trust let him return it to his rightful owner. All usury is abolished, your capital however, is yours to keep. Wrong not and you shall not be wronged. All blood shed from the pagan age of ignorance is to be left unavenged. O people, the devil has lost all hope of ever being worshipped in this land of yours, nevertheless he will try to mislead you in smaller matters. Beware of him therefore for the safety of your religion. Time has turned and it is as it was the day God that created the heavens and the earth. The number of months is 12, four of them are Holy in which war and fighting are forbidden. O man, you have your rights over your wives and they have rights over you. It is your right that they do not fraternize with anyone of whom you do not approve but if they do, Allah has permitted you to isolate them in their homes and chastise them without cruelty. But if they abide by your rights then they have the right to be fed and clothed with kindness. Do treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers. You have taken them only as a trust from Allah and you have their enjoyment only by permission so listen to me in earnest O people and reason well. I leave behind two things: The Quran and my example. If you follow them, you will not go astray. O People, listen to my words, know that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that all Muslims constitute one brotherhood. It is only lawful to take from your brother what he gives you willingly. So wrong not yourselves."

The Prophet (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) then faced the heavens and said: "Be my witness O Allah that I have conveyed your message to your people." It was then that some of the final words of Quran were revealed:

Translation) Chapter 5 Al-Maidaof the Holy Quran, the Book of God -- Verse 3

"This day I have perfected your religion for you and have completed My favor upon you and have chosen for you as religion, Al-Islam."

A few months after, at the age of 63, Allah Almighty reclaimed his soul. The Prophet Muhammad (Sallalahu alaihewasalam) passed away in his home in Medina leaving no more than a few small possessions, for the world at his feet but not a dinar to his name. Yet the spirit of his message remain as clear and alive today as when it was first delivered that man may witness the miracle of his life and mission, the beauty of perfection of his goal.

La Ilaha Illalla Muhammad-ur-Rasullullah

There is no God but Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah

Source: http://www.quran.or.kr/Islam/lopeng.html

Thanks for coming

Thanks for coming
Terima kasih sudi hadir

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