Black Muslims : Perfume from His Sayings

macoo

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Mar 3, 2012
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Prophet Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, said: "I have only been sent to perfect good moral character."[1]
The purpose of all the revealed books has always been inner purification. Abraham prayed to his Lord to send to his descendants a Messenger who would recite His signs to them, teach them the scripture, and purify them. God answered his prayer by sending Muhammad. God says: "It is He who has sent amongst the unlettered people a Messenger from among themselves, to rehearse to them His Signs, to purify them, and to instruct them in the scripture and wisdom,- although they had been, before, in manifest error." (Quran 62:2)

He also says:
"Likewise, We have sent unto you a Messenger from among yourselves, who recites unto you Our revelations and purifies you, and teaches you the scripture and wisdom, and teaches you that which you did not know." (Quran 2:151)
This great purpose is what Prophet Muhammad declared when he said: "I have only been sent to perfect good moral character."[2]

The "good moral character" referred to here is comprehensive. It includes how we conduct ourselves with our Lord, how each of us relates to his or her self, and how we treat other people.
The Prophet’s statement implies there are two types of good moral conduct. The first is common knowledge. People know it instinctively. The other type is that which completes and perfects it. This cannot be known without God’s guidance through revelation. The Prophet was sent to teach it to the people as part of the message he brought.


The Prophet’s guidance in this matter is vast. Many books have been written about it. One of the most famous hadith in this regard is where the Prophet said: "Nothing weighs heavier in the balance on the Day of Judgment than good character. God hates that which is wanton and base."[3]


The Prophet was asked what causes the most people to enter paradise. He said: "Fear of God and good character." He was then asked what brought the most people to the Hellfire. He said: "The tongue and the private parts."[4]

The Prophet’s servant Anas observed: "God’s Messenger had the best character of all people."[5]

He also said: "I served the Prophet for ten years and he never once rebuked me. He never once said about something I did: ‘Why did you do that?’ and he never said about something I didn’t do: ‘Why didn’t you do that?’"[6]





 

macoo

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Mar 3, 2012
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Allah says in the Quran what means

:

{Glory be to Him Who made His servant to go on a night from the Sacred Mosque to the remote mosque of which We have blessed the precincts, so that We may show to him some of Our signs; surely He is the Hearing, the Seeing.} (Al-Israa' 17:1)


There is no doubt that Al-Isra (the night journey) followed by Al-Miraj (the heavenly ascension) was one of the miracles in the life of our Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). According to the most accepted view, it happened on the 27th of Rajab, the seventh month of the Hijri calendar, in the tenth year of Muhammad's prophethood.

It is reported in Hadith literature, that the Messenger of Allah was carried from the Sacred Mosque in Makkah to the "Farthest Mosque" (Al-Masjid al-Aqsa) in Jerusalem on a creature called Al-Buraq in the company of the archangel Gabriel (peace be upon him). There he led a congregational prayer of the prophets of God.


Then Gabriel took him to the heavens where he met the prophets Adam, John, Jesus, Idris, Aaron and Moses (peace be on them all). In the seventh heaven, he met Abraham (peace be on him).

He was then brought to the Divine Presence. The details of this encounter are beautifully detailed in the beginning of surat An-Najm (52).


Prayer: God-given Gift


During this time, Allah ordered for his nation fifty daily Prayers. But on the Prophet's return, he was told by Prophet Moses (peace be on him) that his followers could not perform fifty Prayers. Thus, he went back and eventually it was reduced to five daily Prayers. After this, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) returned to Makkah on the same night itself.


Therefore, Muslims should be thankful to Allah for this gift. They should take care of it and never neglect it. It is the thing that allows the Muslim to communicate with the creator five times as day.

Time and Space Are Not Bound for Allah


One major lesson of that miraculous event, was that space and time which are bound by laws of nature for humans, are not so bound for Allah. On that night prophet Muhammad bridged time and space and this world, traveling to the heavens by Allah's will.

I believe that for those who study philosophy the abstract as well as the symbolic implications of the event might be very stimulating indeed. The gap between the reality of this life and that of the life to come simply diminished. This is illustrated by the Prophet's encounter with other prophets who were long since dead as far as we normally think of it but who, in reality, live as beings in a different form somewhere else.

The implications of the night journey cannot be overstated. The miraculous nature of the Prophet's journey established his divine-stated legitimacy as the seal of all prophets. Allah brought him to Him to show us his true worth in the sight of Allah.

All religious traditions share the concept of miracles, that is, something that defies logic, nature, or the established constitution and course of things.


We will limit our discussion to legitimate miracles from Allah, which are by definition the only true miracles. When the forces of disbelief are strong, typically the prophetic miracles that oppose them are stronger.

Prophet Moses was given several miracles, which included his staff that turned into a massive snake and culminated in his parting of the Red Sea, as a divine response to the extreme infidelity of Pharaoh.

Similarly, Prophet Jesus was given even the power to raise the dead, in order to establish his legitimacy before the Jews who would ultimately condemn him to death for blasphemy. Nevertheless, his miracles were undeniable by their nature, and it was only the obstinacy and arrogance of the people to whom he was sent that enabled them to deny him.

Muhammad's night journey was obviously not easy for the pagan Makkans to believe. Nevertheless, the Prophet proved it logically by describing the approaching caravans that he overtook on his miraculous return.


Thus, this particular prophetic miracle not only established the Prophet's eminence for Muslims as discussed above, but it also helped to prove his prophethood to the non-believers of his time.

Celebrating the Event


As far as the Muslims are concerned, there is no particular celebration, fast or prayer to commemorate Al-Isra and Al-Miraj. But in some places, the Muslims themselves have started to have commemorative functions, where the story of the night journey is told in poetry or lectures.


While the Prophet himself did not establish these practices, there are scholars who maintain that gatherings meant to remind the Muslims of the importance of Al-Miraj in the history of Islam, or to remind us of the importance of love for the Prophet and the significance of the city of Jerusalem, are permissible.





 

macoo

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Mar 3, 2012
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Al-Nawwas bin Saman asked the Prophet about righteousness and sin. He replied: "Righteousness is to exhibit good character. Sin is what disturbs your heart and you hate for others to know about it."[7]

The Prophet said: "The believers who have the most perfect faith are those who have the best character, and the best of them are those who are best to their womenfolk."[8]

He also said: "The most beloved and nearest of you to me on the Day of Judgment will be those of you with the best character. The most detestable and remote from me on the Day of Judgment will be those who are babblers, those who put people down, and those who are vainglorious."[9]

It is enough for us to look at the Prophet’s life, his relationship with his Lord, and how he treated people of all walks of life - his household, his relatives, his Companions, and his enemies.
Once the Prophet borrowed money from a man, and the man came demanding payment, speaking very harshly. The Companions wanted to respond to the man’s harshness, but the Prophet said: "leave him alone. The one who has a right to something is allowed to speak."[10]

Whenever the Prophet borrowed something from someone, he would always return it with more and pray for that person. He used to say: "The only reward for a loan is complete repayment and praise."[11]

Abd Allah bin Salam was one of the leading Jewish scholars in Madinah. He was just-minded and a seeker of the truth. When he heard about Prophet Muhammad’s arrival, he went to have a look at him. When he saw the Prophet’s face, he knew that it was not the face of a liar. The first thing he heard the Prophet say was: "O people! If you spread the greeting of peace among you, feed those who are in need, maintain family relations, and pray at night while people are sleeping, you will enter Paradise with ease."[12]

Abd Allah ibn Salam was able to read from the Prophet’s countenance the signs that he was honest, trustworthy, and pure-hearted. Such a countenance is only for people whose hearts are truly pure, whose conduct is righteous, and who devote themselves to God.


 

macoo

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Mar 3, 2012
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There are many ways to exhibit good character. However, it all goes back to four essentials.
1. Patience: It takes patience to be obedient to God, and to be gentle and kind under trying circumstances. It takes patience to swallow back anger and exercise self-restraint. Patience is necessary for the qualities of forgiveness, pardon, and self-restraint.
God says:
"Let them pardon and overlook. Do you not wish that God should forgive you? And God is Forgiving and Merciful." (Quran 24:22)

2. Decency: This is the quality that helps people abstain from base and ignoble behavior and turns their hearts to that which is noble and high-minded. A decent heart will be honest with the Creator and to those he or she deals with.

3. Courage: This is the quality that inspires people to greatness and generosity and prevents them from succumbing to anger and rash behavior.

4. Justice: One needs to be moderate in one’s behavior. Every noble character trait stands between two ignoble traits at opposite extremes. For instance, gentleness is a good character trait, akin to kindness. However, taking it to an excess leads to indignity and humiliation, while being neglectful of it leads to harshness, cruelty, and severity. Generosity is another good and desirable character trait. Taking it too far leads to reckless spending and wastefulness, while neglecting it makes one a greedy, envious miser.


People naturally possess many good qualities and character traits, some of which they learnt from their parents or picked up from their social environment. These qualities become part of their personalities.

Prophet Muhammad said to Ashajj Abd al-Qays: "You possess two qualities that God loves: gentleness and forbearance.

In some narrations of this event, Prophet Muhammad goes on to tell Ashajj that God made these traits part of his natural disposition, to which Ashajj replied: "Praise be to God who placed within me two qualities that God and His Messenger love."



 

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