I am pleased to include four articles on Prophet Muhammad and will continue to include pieces that are less than 600 words in lenght.
1. Ingrid Mattson - Finding the Prophet
2. Javed Jamil - Best Product of the Creation
3. Shamim Siddiqi - Hope for Mankind
4. Mike Ghouse -The Peacemaker
I urge you to read Karen Armstrong's book "Muhammad". It has influenced me deeply in understanding Islam and relating with the prophet. He is my mentor along with Jesus Christ, Mahatma Gandhi, Buddha, MLK, Mother Teresa my Dad, Mom and my Grand Father; indeed the definition of Muslim I have been working is inspired by the work of these men and women.
To be a Religious (Muslim) is to be a peace maker; one who constantly seeks to mitigate conflicts and nurtures goodwill for co-existence and peace through Justice. God wants his creation to be in peace and harmony, and that is the chief purpose of Religion (Islam); If our words and actions cause peace and bring harmony instead of aggravating the conflict, we are the peace makers.
Finding the Prophet in his PeopleBy Dr. Ingrid Mattson*
I spent a lot of time looking at art the year before I became a Muslim. Completing a degree in Philosophy and Fine Arts, I sat for hours in darkened classrooms where my professors projected pictures of great works of Western art on the wall. I worked in the archives for the Fine Arts department, preparing and cataloging slides. I gathered stacks of thick art history books every time I studied in the university library. I went to art museums in Toronto, Montreal and Chicago. That summer in Paris, "the summer I met Muslims" as I always think of it, I spent a whole day (the free day) each week in the Louvre.
What was I seeking in such an intense engagement with visual art? Perhaps some of the transcendence I felt as a child in the cool darkness of the Catholic church I loved. In high school, I had lost my natural faith in God, and rarely thought about religion after that. In college, philosophy had brought me from Plato, through Descartes only to end at Existentialism-a barren outcome. At least art was productive-there was a tangible result at the end of the process. But in the end, I found even the strongest reaction to a work of art isolating. Of course I felt some connection to the artist, appreciation for another human perspective. But each time the aesthetic response flared up, then died down, it left no basis for action.
Then I met people who did not construct statues or sensual paintings of gods, great men and beautiful women. Yet they knew about God, they honored their leaders and they praised the productive work of women. They did not try to depict the causes; they traced the effects.
Soon after I met my husband, he told me about a woman he greatly admired. He spoke of her intelligence, her eloquence and her generosity. This woman, he told me, tutored her many children in traditional and modern learning. With warm approval, my husband spoke of her frequent arduous trips to refugee camps and orphanages to help relief efforts. With profound respect, my husband told me of her religious knowledge, which she imparted to other women in regular lectures. With deep affection, my husband told me of the meals she had sent to him, when she knew he was too engaged in his work with the refugees to see to his own needs. When I finally met this women I saw that she was covered, head to toe, in traditional Islamic dress. I realized with amazement that my husband had never seen her. He had never seen her face. Yet he knew her. He knew her by her actions, by the effects she left on other people.
Western civilization has a long tradition of visual representation. No longer needing it to do more than allow me a moment of shared vision with an artist alive or dead, I can appreciate it once more. But popular culture has made representation simultaneously ominprescent and anonymous. We seem to make the mistake of thinking that seeing means knowing, and that the more exposed a person is, the more important they are.
Islamic civilization chose not to embrace visual representation as a significant means of remembering and honoring God and people. Allah is The Hidden, veiled in glorious light from the eyes of any living person. But people of true vision can know God by comptemplating the effects of his creative power,
Do they not look to the birds above them Spreading their wings and folding them back? None can uphold them except for The Merciful Truly He is over all things watchful (Qur'an, 67:19)
If God transcends his creation, it is far beyond the capacity of any human to depict him. Indeed, in Islamic tradition, any attempt to depict God with pictures is profound blasphemy. Rather, a Muslim depicts God only with words that God has used to describe himself in his revelation. Among these descriptions are the so-called "99 Names of God," attributes that are recited melodiously throughout the Muslim world: The Merciful, the Compassionate, the Forbearing, the Forgiving, the Living, the Holy, the Near, the Tender, the Wise. . . . Written in beautiful script on lamps, walls, and pendants, the linguistic sign provokes a profoundly personal intellectual and spiritual response with each reading.
Deeply wary of idolotry, Muslims, with few exceptions, declined to glorify not only God, but even humans through visual representation. Historians, accustomed to illustrating accounts of great leaders with their images captured in painting, sculpture and coin have no reliable visual representations of the Prophet Muhammad. What is seen rather, is the Prophet's name, Muhammad, written in curving Arabic letters on those spaces where sacrality is invoked. Along with the names of God and verses of the Qur'an, the name Muhammad, read audibly or silently, leads the believer into a reflective state about the divine message and the legacy of this extraordinary, but still human messenger of God.
Words, written and oral, are the most important medium by which the life of the Prophet and his example have been transmitted across the generations. His biography, the seerah, has been told in verse and prose in many languages. Even more important than this chronological account of the life of the Prophet are the thousands of individual reports of the Prophet's utterances and actions collected in the hadith literature. These reports were transmitted by early followers of the Prophet who heeded God's words, "Indeed in the Messenger of God you have a good example to follow for one who desires God and the Last Day (Qur'an, 33:21)". Eager to follow the divinely inspired actions of the Prophet, his Companions paid close attention not only to his style of worship, but to all aspects of his comportment-everything from his personal hygeine to his interaction with children and neighbors. The Prophet's way of doing things, his sunnah, formed the basis for Muslim piety in all societies where Islam spread. The result was that as Muslims young and old, male and female, rich and poor, adopted the Prophet's sunnah as a model for their lives, they became the best visual representations of the Prophet's character and life. The Muslim who implements the sunnah is an actor who internalizes and, without artifice, reenacts the behaviour of the Prophet. The performance of the sunnah by living Muslims is the archive of the Prophet's life and a truly sacred art of Muslim culture.
I first realized the profound physical impact of the Prophet's sunnah on generations of Muslims as I sat in the mosque one day, watching my nine year old son pray beside his Qur'an teacher. Ubayda sat straight, still and erect beside the young man from Saudi Arabia who, with his gentle manners and beautiful recitation, had earned my son's deep respect and affection. Like his teacher, Ubayda was wearing a loose-fitting white robe that modestly covered his body. Before coming to the mosque, he had taken a shower and rubbed fragrant musk across his head and chin. With each movement of prayer, he glanced over at his teacher, to ensure that his hands and feet were postitioned in precisely the same manner. Reflecting on this transformation of my son who had abandoned as his norm grubbiness and impulsivity for cleanliness and composure, I thought to myself, "thank God he found a good role model to imitate." My son's role model could have been an actor, a rap singer or an athlete. We say that children are "impressionable," meaning that it is easy for strong personalities to influence the formation of their identity. We all look for good influences on our children.
In my son's imitation of his teacher, however, it occurred to me that there was a greater significance, for his teacher was also imitating another. Indeed, this young man was very keen in all aspects of his life to follow the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad. His modest dress was in imitation of the Prophet's physical modesty. His scrupulous cleanliness and love of fragrant oils was modelled after the Prophet's example. At each stage of the ritual prayer he adopted the positions he was convinced originated with the Prophet. He could trace the way he recited the Qur'an back through generations of teachers to the Prophet himself. My son, by imitating his teacher, had now become part of the living legacy of the Prophet Muhammad.
Among Muslims throughout the world, there are many sincere pious men and women; there are also sinners, criminals and hypocrites. Some people are deeply affected by religious norms, others are influenced more by culture-whether traditional or popular culture. Some aspects of the Prophet's behaviour: his slowness to anger, his abhorence of oath taking, his gentleness with women, sadly seem to have little affected the dominant culture in some Muslim societies. Other aspects of his behaviour: his generosity, his hospitality, his physical modesty, seem to have taken firm root in most Muslim lands. But everywhere Muslims can be found, more often than not, they will trace the best aspects of their culture to the example of the Prophet Muhammad, for he was, in the words of one of his Companions, "the best of all people in behaviour."
It was their excellent behaviour that attracted me to the first Muslims I met, poor West African students living on the margins of Paris. They embodied many aspects of the Prophet's sunnah, although I did not realize it at the time. What I recognized was that, among their other wonderful qualities, they were the most naturally generous people I had ever known. There was always room for one more person around the platter of rice and beans they shared each day. Over the years, in my travels across the Muslim world, I would witness the same eagerness to share, the same deep belief that it is not self-denial, but a blessing to give away a little more to others. The Prophet Muhammad said, "The food of two is enough for three, and the food of three is enough for four." During the attack on Kosovo, there were reports of Albanian Muslims filling their houses with refugees; one man cooked daily for twenty people he allowed in his modest home.
The Prophet Muhammad said, "When you see one who has more, look to one who has less." When I was married in Pakistan, my husband and I, as refugee workers, did not have much money. Returning to the refugee camp a few days after my wedding, the Afghan women eagerly asked to see the dresses and gold bracelets, rings and necklaces my husband must have presented to me, as is customary throughout the Muslim world. I showed them my simple gold ring and told them we had borrowed a dress for the wedding. The women's faces fell and they looked at me with profound sadness and sympathy. The next week, sitting in a tent in that dusty hot camp, the same women-women who had been driven out of their homes and lands, women who had lost their husbands and children, women who had sold their own personal belongings to buy food for their families-presented me with a wedding outfit. Bright blue satin pants stitched with gold embroidery, a red velveteen dress decorated with colorful pom-poms and a matching blue scarf trimmed with what I could only think of as a lampshade fringe. It was the most extraordinary gift I have ever received-not just the outfit, but the lesson in pure empathy that is one of the sweetest fruits of true faith.
An accurate representation of the Prophet is to be found, first and foremost, on the faces and bodies of his sincere followers: in the smile that he called "an act of charity," in the slim build of one who fasts regularly, in the solitary prostrations of the one who prays when all others are asleep. The Prophet's most profound legacy is found in the best behaviour of his followers. Look to his righteous people, and you will find the Prophet.
Dr. Ingrid Mattson, is a professor of Islamic Studies at Hartford Seminary. In 1995, she was an adviser to the Afghan delegation to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. The first woman to be elected President of the Islamic Society of North America. Raised a Roman Catholic in Canada and reverted to Islam, she is now a highly regarded academic specialising in Islamic society and law.
"Whosoever chooses to follow guidance, follows it for his own good; whosoever goes astray, goes astray for his own loss"(al-Isra' 17:15)
Video: Dr. Ingrid Mattson: Women of Islam (1 of 4)
Nicole Queen: Converts after seeing Youtube videos on Islam
Dr. Ingrid Mattson: Women of Islam (2 of 4)
Dr. Ingrid Mattson - Gender Equity: The Islamic Perspective
Dr. Ingrid Mattson: Women of Islam (4 of 4)
Evangelical Christian tells why he chose Islam
Rachel finds Islam, from Christianity to Islam
Gender Equity in Islam: Dr. Ingrid Mattson Part 1/6
Amazing Convert Story (part 1 of 2)
A Conversation with Ingrid Mattson
Dr. Ingrid Mattson: Women of Islam (3 of 4)
Professor Ingrid Mattson talks about Community in ISLAM
Women AND Islam grrrrr!!! :) a talk by Sister Aminah Assilmi
Dr.Ingrid Mattson Perspectives on Faith 3
Muhammad: the Best Product of the Creation
By Dr Javed Jamil
International Centre for Applied Islamics
There is a popular principle of Physics known as Anthropic Principle. There was a time before Galilee when the scientists regarded the universe as earth-centric; for they considered earth as the central point of the universe. Then the scientists realised that the earth in fact revolves around the Sun and started theorising that the earth and therefore man has no privileged position in the universe; the earth forms only a minute insignificant part of it. With the arrival of the twentieth century the new realisation started gaining ground, which put mankind as the privileged creation in the universe. Anthropic principle says that man was created because there would not have been anyone to admire the beauty of the Universe if man was not there. Anthropic Principle has come closer to what has been the established position of Islam since the time of Prophet Muhammad. There is a significant difference though. As scientists have vowed to keep Allah out of the arena of Sciences, they have given an atheistic definition of Anthropic Principles known as Trivial, Strong and Weak Anthropic principles. Islam’s version of Anthropic Principle (I have named it True Anthropic Principle) is that man was created to admire the beauty of the Universe, to recognise its Creator and to submit to His System. Quran says:
Not without purpose did We created heaven and earth and all between! that were the thought of Unbelievers! (38: 27/Abdullah Yusuf Ali)
I have only created Jinns and men, that they may serve Me. (51: 56)
Anthropic Principles regard man as the desired Product of the Creation; True Anthropic Principle would regard Prophet Muhammad the Final Product of the Creation and the Quran as the Final Document sent for the guidance of the product. Let me explain it further. Allah created the universe, and first of all made Physical laws for its governance. Each and every particle and each and every corner of the space that formed the universe submitted to the Physical Laws of Allah. It was simply not in their power to act otherwise. Having created the Physical universe, Allah intended to create a kind of existence that will not just submit to Allah because of the inability to act otherwise. This creation will have the capability if it chooses to even disregard the Laws of Allah. The submission as well as rejection by this new creation would of course carry more weight. Greater reward and punishment would await it, as it would willingly accept or reject the System of Allah rather than as part of its in-built nature. To bring this product, Allah first created biological laws and then spiritual ones. Once man was created and started multiplying, social laws were created and recreated in accordance with the demands of the developing world. Mankind as a whole was the best product of the creation, as it was capable of admiring the beauty of the universe, analysing its functioning and using its parts for its own benefit. But the Best of the best would be those who would recognise the biggest truth of the Universe—that it has been created and is governed by a Supreme Being—and would be His representatives in the world. The messengers came with the books of Guidance in their areas of influence ultimately paving the way for the arrival of the Final Product of Creation who will start the process of unification of the whole mankind under the Final System of Allah. Muhammad (PBUH) came and showed to the world the Way, confirming the truth that was revealed before him and inviting all to the Final version of the Truth. The unity of Allah was aimed at the unity of mankind, and if the mankind fails to unite in its submission to One System, the ultimate purpose of the unity will not be achieved. The duty to achieve this is man’s and if it fails it will be held responsible. Allah has however taken upon Him to help him fulfil this Duty by sending guidelines and models for the mankind. If Muhammad (PBUH) is the Final Product of the creation, he is truly the Rahmat-al-lil-aalameen, the Mercy for the Universe, for the universe would not have come into existence if it was not destined to create its best product.
I feel sorry for those who discuss the relevance of Muhammad (PBUH) in the current world. This in my view is a serious degradation of his status. When we speak of his relevance in the world, it means that we are taking the present world as the criterion to judge different personalities, and in the process we want to judge Muhammad too. The truth on the contrary is that Muhammad is the final Criterion and the only Role Model for the world. The world has to be judged in accordance with the Final Criteria, Muhammad (PBUH) and the Book he brought. Rather than studying the relevance of the Prophet in the current world, we must study the relevance of the current world in the light of Prophetic Seerah. And when we analyse the modern world in the light of the Seerah, we find it to be totally irrelevant. Its aims are other than his aims, its dos and don’ts are in clear violation of the dos and don’ts of his mission and its institutions are nothing but a travesty of the system of justice, purity and equality he perfected. The current world is unfortunately not the paradise the Lord of the Universe asked mankind to make but a Shangri-La of the Devil, which looks alluring to eyes from a distance but is nothing but a blazing inferno inside.
Muhammad’s (PBUH) agenda, as shown by the Quran and his seerah, is to establish Natural Word Order. The agenda of the present world is to establish and sustain New World Order. The truth however is that New World Order is unstable by its very meaning; what is new now will become old tomorrow. The Order has only brought chaos at all levels. It has led to the development of a strange kind of world, which appears to be paradise from outside, but as one enters it, one finds nothing but hell. We are living in a world where, thanks to the designs of merchants, immorality reigns. Where it is easier to be bad than good. Where wearing a scarf is banned and baring the body is promoted. Where being a wife or husband is outdated and being a bed partner is smartness. Where piety is ridiculed and impudence glorified. Where prosperity is considered to be the synonym of peace, education that of knowledge and entertainment that of happiness. We are living in a world where children are aborted in the name of women’s rights. Where, murderers and rapists are protected in the name of ‘right to life’. Where, criminals are given all amenities of life in the name of human rights. Where, sexual perverts receive all kinds of sympathy and attention. Where those talking of righteousness in life are condemned as “bloody moralists”. Where, the media do everything to change the choices of the people, but if some reformer tries to warn them against evils, he is dubbed as a retrogressive, who has no business to teach lessons of good behaviour to the people. Alcohol, smoking, gambling and unrestrained-sex are considered to be the biggest symbols of liberty, brothels, beaches, bars and casinos the citadels of “freedom”. One third of the total population of the world smokes, millions of people take drugs, millions drink and gamble and a sizeable percentage indulges in all forms of unhealthy sexual behaviour, including promiscuity, homosexuality, purchased sex, etc. In short, we are inhabitants of a world where the biggest virtue is to openly indulge in the biggest sin; and the biggest sin is to try to exhibit virtuousness.
The globe of New World Order is therefore rapidly developing into nothing but a fireball of chaos. It is hardly surprising then that
· More than 1 million people are murdered every year. (More than 240 million people lost lives in wars in the last century)
· More than 2 million people commit suicides
· More than 5 million people die of sex related diseases (more than 20 million have died of AIDS in recent years); more than 100 million suffer from sex transmitted diseases (42 million from HIV/AIDS)
· More than 2.2 million die of alcohol related problems; more than a hundred million suffer from alcohol related illnesses
· More than 5 million die of smoking related problems; more than 2000 millions smoke
· More than 70 million children are not allowed to take birth and are aborted.
· Hundreds of millions indulge in gambling. 500 million are now using Internet alone for gambling. (In US alone, 20 millions show some signs of gambling addiction and 2 million divorces had gambling as a significant factor.)
· Tens of millions of women are in prostitution and other sex related businesses (more than one million Americans alone have served as prostitutes)
· More than 1.2 million of children are exploited annually in prostitution and other sex trades
· More than 800 million watch pornography
· Millions of homes are broken every year
· Millions of women are raped every year; in many Western countries one tenth to half of all women have been raped (The total number of women who have been raped at least once is in hundreds of millions)
· Sexual abuse of children is on the rise all over the world; in many Western countries up to one third of all people have been sexually abused in their childhood
· Drug addiction is also persistent; tens of millions of people are addicted of harmful drugs
· Civil wars, wars and riots for various reasons are also not showing any remarkable decline, consuming thousands of lives every year
· Economic disparity between different countries and people of the world and among the people of the same countries is continuously growing; poverty may be on the decline but relative poverty is showing steep rise.
It is in the backdrop of this universal disharmony that Islam, in its final form established by the Last Prophet, has to play its role. The whole social, legal, economic, administrative, scientific, health and educational set-up all over the world is founded on un-Islamic premises. Yet Muslims seem to be in a permanent somnolence. Everything that Quran expressly prohibits is destroying the social fabric everywhere. All international organisations including the UN, WHO, WTO and Amnesty have been dancing to the melody of globalisation trampling, in the process, individual’s physical, mental and spiritual health, family peace and social order. We have to fight New World Order and establish Natural World Order, in accordance with the principles laid down by the Book of God .and the life of the Prophet
The uniqueness of Muhammad’s (PBUH) mission was its totality, comprehensiveness and perfection; there is no way mankind can improve on it; if it tries to improve upon it, it would only distort and degrade it. What we can however do and must do is to study how best it can be applied to the modern world; and how best we can change the world in accordance with Islam the Prophetic Mission. Muhammad’s revolution was no ordinary revolution; it was an ideological, intellectual, social, economic, political, moral and spiritual revolution moulded into One Single System based on the unification of the mankind under the unified system of the Only Creator and Sustainer of the world. Seen from the worldly point of view, Muhammad was a genius unparalleled in the history of mankind, Viewed from the point of Divine view, he was no genius; for geniuses are only highly intelligent human beings capable of doing better than others. On the contrary, he was a chosen man, chosen not by the majority of the human beings but by the Creator of God; he was chosen because he was the final destination in the evolution of conscious beings. There are unfortunately some scholars who try to turn the “messenger into a “postman”. There cannot be a worse commentary on his mission than this. He was not a postman who just brought God’s messages to the mankind; he was the true Ambassador and envoy of God who guided individuals, then moulded them into a community, then led them to develop a system and then gave Islam the true global colours it was meant for. The earlier the inhabitants of the globe recognise him as the sole Role Model, the better it will be for them individually as well as collectively.
The author can be contacted at email@example.com
MUHAMMAD– THE HOPE OF MANKIND
[Shamim A Siddiqi, New York]
INTRODUCTION: At the end of sixth century AD humanity had lost all the guidance that came from its Creator and Sustainer as how to live, act and behave on earth. There were no human rights any where in the world. Under the domination of both the superpowers of the time, the Roman and the Persian Empires, only the ruling class was enjoying all rights and privileges. The common man has no rights worth its name and was treated as serfdom. Women folk were treated in Christianity something as “untouchables” and under the fold of Hindu paganism, they had no right to live after the death of husband. They were to die with them alive due to age old prevalent custom of “sati”. Europe was grappling under its dark ages and America was not known at all to the civilized world of the time. Humanity was, thus, passing through dark pages of its history; its fate was lying in obscurity and apparently had no hopes in its “destiny”.
The Christian priests, saints and hermits of the time were all in waiting for the coming of a Messenger from a land in the desert covered with date trees as prophesies in Bible foretold. Only the City of Madinah in the heart of Arabian Peninsula fulfilled that criterion. They had established numerous monasteries at the northern arch of Arabian Peninsula. The monastery of Ba'hirah Rahib was one of them. Professor Taha Yaseen of Egypt has given a vivid description of these monasteries in his book of Seerah of Rasulullah (S) and has shown that how eagerly Judeo-Christian world was waiting for the new Messenger of Allah. The detail account given by Prophet’s beloved companion Salman Farsi (RA) of his reaching to Madinah in search of the Messenger as directed by Christian priests confirms the quest and long waiting of Christian world.
Unfortunately, at the end of 20th and the beginning of the 21st century, the humanity is experiencing as a whole more or less the similar situation as that of 6th century but in a different perspective. In 6th century, the causes of concern and waiting were genuine as all the previous guidance from God were either lost, or mutilated through human innovations and manipulations along with the life pattern of the previous Messengers too except with some scanty account that could not lead and deliver to human society a system and a model of their life-pattern to live with. In the context of the present world, both the Guidance from the Creator and Sustainer is available intact in its original form along with the life-pattern of the Messenger, the guide, the model as how to live, act and behave in the world in its minutest details. It is just the self-denial attitude of Judeo-Christian-Pagan world that is blind to its existence in its totality. It is due to age old prejudices, historical animosity and ignorance of an unprecedented nature; it is being ignored one way or the other.
Their blindness is by their free-choice and not by accident or any natural mishap. It can be termed as “day-light-blindness”. They are in disparate need of a system for getting justice, peace, security and an ideal model to lead a balanced and an organized life in their personal, family and society at individual, national and international levels. They are making blind rough shots here and there, grappling in darkness but having no semblance of light either in their vision, approach, programming or projections. They are seeing every thing from the ken of mortal eyes and not as their urgent need for Divine Guidance and the life-pattern that the Messenger sets in its minutest details for human beings to follow. That is why man has failed in all its programming, projections and man-made systems whether it was feudalism, monarchy, capitalism, socialism, communism and secular democracy or military dictatorship. All have multiplied human problems and provided only some band-aid-treatment or some namesake temporary respite only. Problems are gradually heaping and pilling up in Himalayan size.
In sequence, humanity has lost all its hopes. The forthcoming era of Globalization, World Trade and forming of different Group Markets on the pattern of EUC are bound to fail as their objective is to exploit the human needs and meager resources of under-developed and developing countries around the world to add a few degrees to the standard of living of the developed countries at he cost of increasing the poverty level in the poor countries higher and higher. By denying the existing Divine Guidance and the role of the Messenger of time, humanity cannot survive anymore. It has no choice but to turn its face to follow the life-pattern of Rasulullah (S) with all hopes and expectations and it would get it there. Let us see what hopes the life of the Messenger of the time, Prophet Muhammad has in store for the suffering humanity that all the secular isms could not deliver at all.
THE FIRST STEP TOWARDS BUIILDING THE FATE OF HUMANITY: After his appointment as the Messenger of Allah in the cave of Hear in 572 AD, Prophet Muhammad (S) concentrated, on individuals, the epic center of all troubles and corruptions on earth. He (S) rightly concluded that if individuals are corrected, reformed and their character is re-build on the basis of fear of Allah and accountability in Akhirah, society as a whole can be reconstituted afresh on balanced moral grounds. As such:
* He (S) cemented the relations of each individual with his/her Creator and Sustainer;
* Every individual is a trustee of what Allah has given him and not master or owner;
* Every one is accountable to Allah for all his/her actions and deeds one earth in Akhirah;
* He (S) presented his life as ideal for all individuals to follow in every walk of life till
Rasulullah (S) made every effort in remodeling their respective individual character on these principles and made them the most trustworthy people of the time. This was his (S) team of workers that he first built and they were the instruments in changing the society altogether on the concept of Tawhid, Amanah, Akhirah and his Prophethood. He (S) purified individual’s character and motivated them to carry out the mission of Islam to the four corners of the world. His (S) Kalimah: La Ilaha Ilallah, Muhammadun Rasulullah was, in fact, the most revolutionary political slogan and a motivating force that kept his (S) followers always active, motivated and involved in the service of mankind: to be good to others, in removing the evil from the society and establishing the Ma’roof all around. This benevolent character that he (S) created amongst his (S) followers was by serving himself as its model in every walk of life. He (S), thus, transformed the Arab society of Jahiliyah [ignorance] in to a benevolent and Allah conscious society all around in his (S) life time within a limited period of 23 years. This is his (S) prescribed, well-practiced and trusted model for mankind to follow till eternity. If humanity wants today to remove corruption, favoritism, nepotism and discrimination in all its forms and shape from its ranks and files, this is the only way now left for mankind to accept and follow, the only hope to get justice, peace and a balanced harmonious growth in the world.
THE MOST INSPIRING CHARACTER OF HISTORY:
* He (S) was very kind and merciful and full of concern for believers in Allah [Q9: 128];
* He (S) was at the highest order of morality [Q.68: 4];
* His (S) morals were the embodiment of the Qur’an [Hadith]
* Rasulullah (S) confirmed, “I have been appointed to perfect the morality”. [Hadith]
* He (S) was the Messenger for entire mankind [Q. 7: 158]
* Arabs acknowledged him (S) unanimously and used to call him Al-Sadiq & Al-Ameen
[the Truthful and the Trustworthy]
* He (S)” never speaks out of his own desire and that [what he coveys to you] is but [a
Divine] inspiration with which he is being inspired” [Q. An-Najm: 3-4]
* He (S) said, “Ana Afsahul Arab” [I am the most eloquent person amongst the Arabs]
* An Extraordinary advocate and promoter of “Ilm” [knowledge] in the society:
“Talabul Ilme farizatun ala kulley Muslim” [Acquiring knowledge is obligatory on
every Muslim [and Muslimah] – Hadith –Ibne Ma’ja]
* He (S) was the most ideal and perfect Da’ee Ilallah for all time to come:
* He (S) declared the first Charter of Human Rights in 631 AD from the Mount of
Arafat when he (S) performed his (S) first and the last Hajj.
* He (S) was the most ardent advocate of human rights, wage-earners rights, very benevolent to slaves, care takers of the way farers and the oppressed, the orphans and the rights of women;
* He (S) established the concept of equality amongst human beings, eradicated all kinds of discrimination on account of color, race, wealth, language and geographical boundaries. He made Bilal bin Ribah (RA), a Negro from Eretria the Moazzin of his Mosque and his personal exchequer;
* He (S) was an affectionate father, a dutiful and loveable husband, an ideal neighbor, a trustworthy and honest trader, an efficient administrator, a foresighted statesman and a brilliant general. In short he (S) was the most accomplished human being. Whoso ever came in contact with him (S) adored him, including his adversaries. He (S) is the most perfect ideal in every walk of life for any individual and society to follow as model, the only hope of mankind to deliver Khair [good] to all who resolve to follow him and his teachings.
BUILDING A MODEL HUMAN SOCIETY - Rasulullah (S) first built his (S) team of workers on the lines stated above. We call them Sahabah out of reverence. He (S) built it through person to person contacts who in turn became the king pins of the Islamic society that he (S) established in Arabian Peninsula based on the principles of equality, justice and complete social security for the poor, needy, destitute, underfed, unemployed, incapacitated and wayfarers – the have-nots, through a well-established social-welfare system of Islam that advocates: “Collect from your affluent and return it back to your poor and needy” [Hadith}
He (S) build a society in which justice was free, education was obligatory and free for all. It was free of corruption and favoritism. Rate of crime was extremely low to the extent that often jails were found empty. Situation of law and order was so perfect that an old lady could travel from Sana’a to Hazarmaut, a distance of about 1,000 miles with gold in her hands and she had no fear except that of Allah. Adi bin Hatim (RA) confirmed it by his own observation.
CONCLUSION: The forgoing proves beyond any shadow of doubt the life pattern that Prophet Mohammad (S) demonstrated to the world and the system of life that he (S) delivered to mankind are now the only hope of mankind to get justice, peace and security on earth. The more its adoption is delayed, the more it is drifting away from its cherished goal to attain perfection in transforming the abode of man into the cradle of peace and free of exploitation; where both the affluent and the poor will feel contented in their respective field and where the opportunity of progress will be available to all and sundry without any prejudice as a right of all human beings. Humanity can attain this goal only when it would accept the leadership of Prophet Muhammad (S) as the only hope of its survival and delivering good to its specie.
However, it would be possible only when the Muslim Ummah establishes Islam as a political entity some where in its midst and sets a model for humanity to follow. If the Ummah does it, the world would rush to it and accept it like a hot cake, Insha Allah. Will the Muslim Community and its leadership accept it as the most important challenge of time and replenish the ‘skeleton” cheeks of humanity with new hopes and blood.
MUHAMMAD, THE PEACE MAKER
By Mike Ghouse
World Muslim Congress
SUCCESSFUL NAATIA MUSHAERA ON 2.21.14
45 PICTURES AT: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikeghouse/sets/72157641382648224/
August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916
Mirza A Beg
PLANNED MUSLIMS RESPONSE TO QUR'AN BURNING BY PASTOR JONES ON 9/11/13 IN MULBERRY, FLORIDA
We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.
Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”
God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.
We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration (www.UnitydayUSA.com) held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.
Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.
As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.
We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.
We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.
We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.
Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.
Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.
We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.
The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.