Al-Faqr-u Fakhri (Prophet SAW)
PROF G R MALIK
Our beloved Prophet’s holy life is so charismatic that it is very difficult for any objective observer to decide which aspect of it is more effulgent than the other. As one of his earliest devotees, Hassan bin Thabit, sang in his admiration:
It is as if you were created as you willed.
Every word, every deed of the Prophet, everything related to his holy life, proclaims him to be the messenger of Allah. Choose anything from this life at random and you will be convinced that it can relate to none except the messenger of Allah.
The history of religion tells us that not very seldom has religion been used as a means of exploitation. The annals of Papacy are replete with hair-raising incidents of excessive greed and amassing of wealth. Priests of different religions and keepers of shrines and tombs, with very few exceptions, fleece the credulous populace to fill their own coffers. Our Prophet sacrificed all that he had including the massive wealth of his wife, Um al-munineen Khadijah (RA), in the way of Allah. During very difficult days of Makkan life, there came a time when the nobles of Makkah offered the Prophet all luxuries including extraordinary wealth in exchange for his giving up the cause of truth. The Prophet spurned the offer with utter contumely. On the other hand, when finally his mission triumphed and the whole of Arabia came under his control, he lived a life of exemplary austerity and self-denial.
I‘la is a well-known episode of the Prophet’s life at Madinah. For some domestic difficulties the Prophet chose to live in seclusion for a period. His companions got worried and the foremost amongst those who visited him to show their concern was Umar bin al-Khattab. As he entered the Prophet’s chamber and cast his eyes around he suddenly began to cry. With tears rolling down his cheeks and sobs suppressing his words, he asked the Prophet that he was resting on a bare rush mat with a few handfuls of barley lying in a corner for his sustenance when the whole of Arabia was under his control. Should Caesar and Chosroes live in luxury and Allah’s messenger live in penury? The Prophet said, “Umar, Caesar and Chosroes have opted for this world only when we have akhirah uppermost in our mind.” Two other incidents from the Prophets life are remarkable in this context:
“Uqba (RA) reports that once I offered ‘Asr (late afternoon) prayers behind the Prophet (SAW). As he concluded the prayers with tasleem (salutation towards both sides at the end of the prayers) he suddenly got up and hurried through the ranks of those who stood behind him in prayer and went to the dwelling place of a wife of his. His unusual haste scared the people. But then he turned up and saw the people lost in wonderment at his haste. He said that he had suddenly remembered a piece of gold lying in his home and disliked to be diverted by its presence from Allah’s remembrance and had therefore hastened to have it given away in charity.” (Bhukhari)
“Abu Hurairah reports that in the season of date-picking, dates used to be brought to the messenger of Allah. One after the other people will come with dates until a huge heap of dates was formed. Hasan and Husain (small children then) would begin to play with the dates. Once one of them picked up a date and put it in his mouth. As soon as the Prophet saw it, he took out the date from his mouth remarking, ‘didn’t you know that the offspring of Muhammad do not eat that which is given in Charity?” (Bhukari)
May Allah shower his choicest blessings upon him who banned everything that could even slightly smack of exploitation!
Lastupdate on : Thu, 4 Mar 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 4 Mar 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 5 Mar 2010 00:00:00 IST
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