The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as an ethical model
The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), who “is the best example for those who hope to meet Allah and the hereafter”, lived with “high ethics” with the approval of Allah, whose mercy has encompassed everything.
The essence of ethics is formed by personality; the essence of personality is spontaneous and is formed by its part that is continuous and encompassing. With the continuity and encompassing it contains, “the Sunnah”, as the way to be followed, presents the unique ethics of the Prophet without allowing any doubt and misunderstanding to humanity’s thought and ability to take lessons and find the truth. The coherence, honesty and justice that embrace life completely with their manifestation as an inseparable body with every possible aspect, word and behavior, the sincerity that unites the essence with words, the delicacy, kindness and modesty that stamp beauty and humanity on everything that is thought, said and done, the compassion, mercy and love that symbolize the essence of all kinds of goodness, being humane in all situations and conditions, lenience, generosity, patience and courage that represent what befits humanity, taqwa, moderation and fairness that constitute the essence of the tree of belief, humility, simplicity and fidelity that are the most beautiful clothes of all kinds of beauty and maturity form the outlines of his high ethics.
In meeting his natural needs such as eating, dressing, resting and having fun, in his relations with his family, relatives, friends and enemies, in his prayers, worship and supplication, in his conveying the message and talks, in his activities for his livelihood, in his smile and dignity, in his well-being and illness, wealth and poverty, in his struggle with the enemy in the war, his chatting with his children at home, his uncle, in his tears dripping on the dead body of his son Ibrahim, in his eyes looking at the ripped and brutally torn body of his paternal uncle Hamza’s, in short, at every moment and every stage of his life, all those lofty values appear to be making an effort to mature and become inseparable parts of the Prophet’s personality.
Life is a set of constantly changing relationships and it displays a process with all its changes. Ethics, on the other hand, is what gives its identity and personality to this process with its stability, development and maturation. From this point of view, when we look at the life of the Prophet, which is known in detail, it is easily seen that what gives this life an exemplary personality is the Quran, which is the divine expression of lofty values, the straight path and leading a humane life in accordance with the purpose of creation. That his beloved wife Hz. Aisha, as one of the people who knew him best, answered the question “How was his ethics?” by saying, “His ethics was the Quran” is very important in this respect.
“Ya Sin. By the Qur’an, full of Wisdom,- Thou art indeed one of the apostles, On a Straight Way.” (Yasin, 36/1-4),
“Nun. By the Pen and the (Record) which (men) write,- Thou art not, by the Grace of thy Lord, mad or possessed. Nay, verily for thee is a Reward unfailing: And thou (standest) on an exalted standard of character.” (al-Qalam, 68/1-4)
With the verses above and similar ones, the witnessing of Allah Almighty, who creates beings, who gives orders and guides man to the best way, about the high ethics of the Prophet as well as the relationship of that high ethics with divine teaching, and the witnessing of so many people who approve that reality by joining that divine witnessing with their common senses and hearts based on true knowledge, experience and news show that the Prophet became a mercy to the realms by reaching human maturity and perfection under the guidance of the divine teaching of the Quran with his ethics that stamped every moment of his life throughout with his essence, words and deeds. He fulfilled the necessity of being a slave and messenger of Allah for those who aim maturity and perfection and showed the meaning, form and function of reading “in the name of the Lord who created” to all humanity. Therefore, examining his unique morality takes people to maturity and perfection experienced under the guidance of the Quran, and gives man the opportunity to understand, taste and live life with its integrity in all its complexity. In fact, what makes him a mercy to the realms and a good example for humanity is that encompassing and integrity; that is, reflecting the Quran, which is the unique guide of living in a humane way, to life with his essence, words, deeds, family, community and state.
The earth, on which humans live, has witnessed many achievements and beauties formed by human hands. However, that all those beauties and achievements have rarely been seen to show and lead to the truth by a single person. It is this encompassing and integrity that distinguishes the Prophet and his unique ethics from other people who achieved success in various aspects of life, and makes him an example of all maturity and perfection. In that case, for every moment and every stage of human life, there is an example that points to maturity and perfection in his noble life and high ethics.
The beauty and uniqueness of the Prophet’s personality and morality is enough for understanding his uniqueness for a person who has the opportunity to see the Prophet in any way, to share a moment of life with him in any way or to read a reliable work about him, to reach him in some way, to see and hear, and to evaluate what he saw and heard. Being able to appreciate him properly and benefitting from his beauty and uniqueness is possible through being able to see and evaluate him as a messenger of Allah, and therefore as a teacher and explainer of the truth (the book and wisdom), an educator of maturity and perfection in connection with the anxiety of “responsibility” one carries, and being able to open the whole life to his universal exemplariness without any exception. In that case, the following verse will be enough to express it:
“Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the Praise of Allah.” (al-Ahzab, 33/21)
His relatives, friends and those who saw him testify that the blessed body of the Messenger of Allah was completely flawless, that all his organs were in harmony, that his forehead, chest, the distance between his two shoulders and palms were wide, his neck was long and straight, his shoulders, biceps and calves were large and thick, his wrists were long, his fingers were longish, his hands and fingers were thick. His belly was at the same level as his chest and he was not fat. His feet were arched, not flat. He was a bit taller than medium height, big boned, and strong. His skin was softer than silk, his head was of medium size, his eyebrows were curved, he had a drawn nose and a slightly rounded face. His eyelashes were long, and his eyes were black and beautiful. There was a distance between his two eyebrows but they were close to each other. He was not beetle browed. There was a vein between his two eyebrows; it would swell and become visible when he got angry. His face was pinkish white. In other words, it was neither as white as a chalk nor black. It was between them and had a gentle rosy whiteness; there was a luminous glow on his face. His teeth were as white and lustrous as pearls and slightly sparse. They became visible when he spoke and smiled. His hair was neither very curly nor very straight. When he let his hair grow, it came down past the lobes of his ears. His beard was thick but not very long. He would cut the extra beard when he grasped it with his hand. At the time of his death, his hair and beard had only just begun to turn gray. He had very few white hairs on his head and twenty or so in his beard. His body was very clean. His skin and sweat smelled better than the best scents whether he wore perfume or not. He was generally in a sorrowful and contemplative mood. His glance was clear and deep. He generally kept quiet; he spoke when it was necessary. When he spoke, he would speak slowly and clearly, repeating important points. He would express his love and joy with a smile; his facial color and features would indicate his mood. When he walked, he would lift his feet strongly and walk with dignity and calmness, with quick and long steps, as if descending from a high place. When he wanted to turn toward something, he would turn not only with his head, but with his whole body; he would not look in any direction for no reason. He was clean, tidy and healthy. He was solemn, dignified, friendly, warm, sincere and caring.
The outward appearance of the Prophet and his natural features reflected his inner ethics and world. The descriptions made regarding the issue show his sincerity, intimacy, affection, reliability, honesty, consciousness and tranquility. It will be seen clearly when the brightness of his face, confidence of his walking and fullness of his turning toward a direction are considered in terms of that aspect. As a matter of fact, Allah Almighty considers “face” as a sign introducing “inside” and showing ethics in several places in the Quran. (2/al-Baqara, 173; 7/al-A’raf, 46-48; 47/Muhammad, 30; 48/al-Fath, 29 and 55/ar-Rahman, 41) The following statement of Ibn Abbas “Good deeds cause brightness on the face, luminous light in the heart, strength in the body, ampleness in sustenance and love in the heart” and the following statement of Hz. Uthman “The garment of every deed a person does is put on him; if it is a good deed, a good one and if it is a bad deed a bad one...” show that fact. In that case, we understand it better in the following incidents: The Prophet bought a red camel without bargaining and paying any money from a caravan that had stopped outside Madinah and started to lead the camel by holding its halter; the people of the caravan started to regret giving it to a person they did not know without any money but a woman said to them, “Take it easy! We have never seen a person purer and more luminous than him.” When the Prophet died, Hz. Abu Bakr entered his room, uncovered the cloth to see his face, kissed his forehead and said, “Ah! You are as beautiful now as when you were alive.” Those who saw the Prophet suddenly were excited due to his grandeur and those who knew him became very happy when they saw him.
The place and effect of the efforts of “reading in the name of the Lord, who created...” and “standing firm (in the straight Path) as he is commanded” on the personality of the Messenger of Allah are obvious. That the first verses revealed to him were “Proclaim! (or read!) in the name of thy Lord and Cherisher, Who created- Created man, out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood: Proclaim! And thy Lord is Most Bountiful,- He Who taught (the use of) the pen, Taught man that which he knew not” and that when his Companions asked him about how we was when the signs of old age appeared, he answered by saying, “The chapter of Hud made me old” indicate it; Allah Almighty states the following in the chapter in question:
“Therefore stand firm (in the straight Path) as thou art commanded,- thou and those who with thee turn (unto Allah.; and transgress not (from the Path): for He seeth well all that ye do.” (Hud, 11/112)
Man is a synthesis of relationships. Every human being is created in a set of relationships and he reveals his personality and ethics with his attitude and role in that whole. The importance and role of being a servant to the creator, and showing compassion, mercy and justice to the created beings, which is the way of preserving the whole of those relationships, which Almighty Allah refers to as “ordered to be united”, and the difficulty of performing them correctly as ordered, in reaching human maturity are indisputable. We always see that anxiety and effort to “be straightforward as commanded” in the unique ethics, essence, words and deeds of the Messenger of Allah, and even in his graying hair and beard. He always had that anxiety in his relationship with Allah, in his inner world, at home, in his relationships with his family and relatives, in his attitudes toward his friends and all the people he knew and did not know, in his resting, in trade, in the distribution of booty in war and after the war, in the imamate in the mosque, in leadership, in his life and in his death; and he exerted himself to fulfil it. He expressed his state as follows: “My Lord has educated me so well”, “I was sent only to complete ethical virtues.” In that case, learning the ethics of the Messenger of Allah will be possible by getting to know him with the whole of his relationships. When it is done, it will be seen that the basis of his ethical greatness lies in the fact that he preserved all those relationships admirably, without neglecting one, and that he united everything ordered to be combined with his life.
The first two ethical virtues in the list are “justice” and “doing good deeds”; both concepts express “placing everything in their place” and “doing things properly”. As a matter of fact, Allah Almighty states the following in the Quran: “Allah commands justice, the doing of good, and liberality to kith and kin, and He forbids all shameful deeds, and injustice and rebellion: He instructs you, that ye may receive admonition.” (16/90) Throughout his life, the Messenger of Allah attached value to everything to the extent that it was necessary; negligence, insensitivity and extremism did not exist in his life. The fact that a person behaved in every aspect of life without causing negligence and imbalance, without going to any extremes, and by maintaining that balance and stability in both the horizontal and vertical dimensions of life is definitely the peak of maturity and perfection. Being a human did not cause any harm to his prophethood. His prophethood did not make him forget his family and friends. His devotion to Allah and his inner feelings did not cause him to abandon worldly things. His leadership, commanding and domination did not prevent him from visiting ill people and talking with the poor. Although the experiences and opportunities between his life in Makkah and his life in Madinah were very different, there was no difference in terms of his stance.
Justice and good deeds surrounded every part and moment of his life. He was known as al-Amin (the Trustworthy) in the society when he was young. His honesty in business life was appreciated, and his arbitration in disputes between people was accepted. He said, “Honesty leads to good deeds and good deeds to Paradise. Lying leads to bad deeds and bad deeds to Hell.” He regarded honesty as a necessity of belief, and lying, betrayal and breaking one’s promise as signs of hypocrisy. He was so sensitive related to honesty that he did not abandon honesty even when he was joking. When he was asked, “Do you make jokes?”, he said, “Yes, but I tell nothing but the truth.” Even his enemies knew that characteristic of him; although they did their best to kill him, they did not hesitate to entrust their valuable things to him. When the Prophet migrated from Makkah to Madinah, he told Hz. Ali, whom he made lie in his bed, to return all of the things entrusted to him to their owners.
Even the most difficult situations could not prevent him from keeping his promise. No material interest could make him take a step back regarding the issue. Hudhayfa al-Yaman and one of his friends were captured by the polytheists while they were going from Makkah to Madinah and they were released on the condition that they would not fight against the polytheists. When they rejoined the Prophet before the Battle of Badr, they told the Prophet about the incident; the Prophet told them that they could not join the war despite their low number and the severe need for men saying, “Go back! We will act in accordance with your promise in any case. We need only Allah’s help.” One of the conditions of the treaty made with the polytheists in Hudaybiyya was that the people who became Muslims in Makkah and went to Madinah would be returned to Makkans if they demanded. The treaty had just been signed when Abu Jandal escaped from the prison where he was kept in Makkah and arrived at the place where the Muslims were, with his hands chained. When the polytheist Suhayl Bin Amr, who was there at that time and had signed the treaty, demanded the immediate implementation of the treaty and asked the fugitive to be handed over to him, the Muslims took offense. Despite his desire for the salvation of the believers, the Messenger of Allah said, “O Abu Jandal! Be patient. We cannot break our promise. Inshallah Allah will create a way out for you.” He neither gave up his commitment to the treaty nor neglected Abu Jandal. He regarded keeping one’s promise and commitment to the treaty as a requirement of being a slave of Allah, leaving the outcome to Allah and relying on Him.
He said, “Working in order to earn halal sustenance is an obligatory duty” and that the best income was the one made through manual labor and legitimate trade; he said Allah would show mercy to those who made things easy while selling and buying and he declared that true and reliable traders would be together with prophets and martyrs in the hereafter. He sometimes visited the markets, checked the goods of the sellers and said, “He who deceives us is not of us”. He himself was actively engaged in trade and was known for his contentment, honesty and loyalty. He sometimes borrowed things but paid his debt on time and in the best way. He attached importance to the observance of rights and insisted that every right holder should be given his right. He declared the supremacy of the right by saying, “The owner of the right has the right to speak”. He would not allow any incident to cause loss of right. When a Jew to whom he owed something came to demand his receivable by pulling his clothes and holding his collar and said rude words such as “You, sons of Abdulmuttalib, always delay your debt”, Hz. Umar became angry and responded him harshly. The Messenger of Allah smiled and said to Hz. Umar, “O Umar! I and he expected to hear a better word than this one. You should have advised me to pay my debt properly and advised him to demand his receivable well; there are three days to the date of payment.” Then, he paid the Jew more than he owed. That incident caused the Jew to become a Muslim.
Once, he bought some meat from a Bedouin, who was selling the meat of the animal he had slaughtered, in exchange for dates, which he thought he had in his house. When he came home, he saw that there were no dates left. He immediately went to the market and found the Bedouin, he said, “I bought meat from you in exchange for dates, but unfortunately I have no dates left.” The Bedouin, who thought he had been deceived, yelled and shouted; the Messenger of Allah said to those who tried to silence him, “Do not interfere because the Bedouin is right.” He tried to explain the issue again but the Bedouin did not stop complaining. Thereupon, the Prophet sent the Bedouin to a woman from Ansar to give him dates in return for the meat the Prophet bought. After getting his dates, the Bedouin was moved by the patience and tolerance of the Prophet and said, “O Muhammad! May God Almighty reward you! You have given me more than you owed.” Acting in accordance with rights and returning in the best way were among the most important principles of his ethics. He said, “Those who pay their debts in a better way and more perfectly are virtuous people.” When he borrowed something, he would repay it by giving more.
Compliance with justice necessitates being fair even if it is against oneself and one’s parents and relatives, and being able to resist the pressures of injustice and extremism by feelings of grudge and hatred toward the other party. Once, some people wanted to intercede for a woman of upper class who had stolen; the Messenger of Allah said, “That is why the Israelites were destroyed. They would enforce the law on the poor and forgive the rich. I swear by Allah that if Muhammad’s daughter Fatima stole, I would cut off her hand.” The Messenger of Allah, who refused all kinds of favoritism and acted meticulously for the determination of crime and execution of punishment, is the unique representative of impartial justice and fairness. What caused even the Jews to refer their disputes to him was that unique characteristic of His.
The Messenger of Allah gave Hz. Ali the following advice: “When two people come to you for judgment, do not make a decision without listening to both of them. You can find the truth only when you listen to both.” Hz. Ali said that thanks to that advice, he had no difficulties in lawsuits and that he could easily find the truth. The Messenger of Allah said that fair leaders would be the closest to Allah on the Day of Judgment while the oppressors would be the furthest away and that Allah would close His door to the judges who closed their doors the poor and needy. While he was distributing the booty after a war, somebody said, “this distribution is not being done for the sake of Allah.” Thereupon, the Prophet said, “If I do not act justly, who can act justly?” When he wanted to warn someone who was pushing him in the crowd with the thin stick in his hand, the person’s mouth was accidentally scratched. Thereupon, the Prophet asked that person to do the same thing to him. His sensitivity related to justice was complemented by his respect to fairness.
His justice was not harsh, rough and offending, but constructive, restorative and corrective. When he was on his deathbed at the end of his beautiful life, which was devoted to justice, he addressed the public as follows: “If I owe anyone anything, or if I hurt anyone, or if I have harmed anyone’s property or honor, here is my body, my honor and my property; they can demand their rights in this world.” People kept silent but a man said that the Messenger of Allah owed him a few dirhams and he received his money. Blessed are those who lead their lives in accordance to justice and without a trace of oppression!
Every deviation from justice represents a step toward oppression. “... O my son! Join not in worship (others) with Allah. For false worship is indeed the highest wrong-doing.” (Luqman, 31/13) “As the verse above indicates, the furthest point from justice is false worship (polytheism; shirk) and the essence of justice is tawhid (oneness), which is the flag of all virtues and good deeds. Therefore, servitude to the Creator constitutes the essence of the Prophet’s ethics; his life is the best witness to it. That sound commitment lies at the basis of the stability and perseverance of all kinds of perfection in the horizontal and vertical dimensions of life. “Being able to be a grateful servant” was the motive of all his thoughts, words and actions. When his feet turned blue due to praying all night long, Hz. Aisha said, “Allah has forgiven your past and future sins. Why are you doing this?” He said, “Should I not be a grateful servant?” she replied.
The people of Taif, whom he invited to Allah’s religion, treated him with contempt and humiliation, and they even stoned him. He found solace in his Lord and tried to express his devotion and love to Him with the following emotional words: “I show consent to anything that comes to you except Your wrath.” He told his Companions on many occasions, “I am the one who fears Allah the most among you.” It was true for every moment of his life. Once, he kept reciting the following verse, which is mentioned as the prayer of Hz. Isa (Jesus) in the Quran, all night long: “If Thou dost punish them, they are Thy servant: If Thou dost forgive them, Thou art the Exalted in power, the Wise.” (al-Maida, 5/118)
Mentioning Allah and glorifying Him surrounded every moment of him. He read the Quran constantly and even asked others to read it; he said that he loved listening to the Quran from others. Reflecting the Quran in every moment of his life with his essence, words and deeds was his greatest goal. He would say, “The light of my eyes is prayer” and would like to pray on every occasion. He would say, “Come on, Bilal! Stand up, utter iqamah, comfort us and bring us peace.” It was superior to all the beauties of the world for him. Anas said, “You can see the Messenger of Allah praying at an unexpected moment of the night, and sleeping at a time when you least expect it.” Sometimes, he would fast so much that people thought that he would never stop fasting; and sometimes, he would not fast such a long time that people thought that he would not fast anymore.”
Although his devotion to Allah and his fondness in worship was at an extreme level, it did not cause him to distance himself from the world and from people; on the contrary, it became the most important factor in fulfilling all his responsibilities in the best way thanks to his moderation. He said, “The best deed is the one that is consistent even if it is a little.” He advised his friends to live in moderation warning them that people will get nowhere with extremism in religion. He insisted on protection from excesses not only in worship, but also in all aspects of life such as eating, drinking, clothing, friendship and enmity. It was his custom not to eat before he was hungry, and to get up from the dining table before he was full. Once, he told his friends who decided to fast every day, to worship throughout the night and not to marry, “Although I am the one who fears Allah the most among you and knows his responsibilities toward Him, I fast on some days and eat on some days; I sometimes sleep and sometimes pray; I marry women.” Thus, he advised them moderation; he told them that their souls, bodies, eyes, wives, children, relatives and friends had rights over them, expressing the essence of moderation. After all, it is a necessity of justice and good deeds. Despite all his heavy responsibilities and various duties, his life and ethics shine with the perfection of that moderation, and he becomes a guide for those who seek their way and a light for those who try to get out of darkness.
When we are asked how the Messenger of Allah lived, we can answer it as he lived like a servant in the shortest and simplest way. Consciousness of worship (serving Allah) and humility prevailed every moment of his life. He would say, “I am definitely a servant. I eat as a servant eats and sit as he sits.” He viewed life from that perspective. Simplicity and humility were inseparable qualities of his personality and life. He would liken his life in this world to a journey by saying, “O Allah! There is no life other than life in the hereafter.” He avoided all kinds of deeds contrary to that description. Inconvenience, coercion, vanity, hypocrisy, conceit and arrogance were the most distant from him in the world. Formalism and formality could find no place in his ethics. He dressed simply and did not disdain the food that he was served. He would generally be content with plain bread, dates and milk, and he would not complain. He would not reject modest invitations of plain bread and water. When he did not like a meal, he would not make any comment and would state that he could not eat. He slept on a mat. When he got up, there would generally be the traces of the mat on his right side. He did not fill his stomach with wheat bread for three days in a row; he did not eat two meals a day during the Madinah period. Hz. Aisha said, “Sometimes a month passed and we, the family of Muhammad, would not light a fire to cook; we would only fill our stomachs with dates and water.” Abu Umama narrates that the Messenger of Allah said,
“My Lord offered me to transform the valley of Makkah into gold for me. However, I said, ‘No my Lord! I will eat one day and go hungry one day. I will beg You and remember You when I am hungry. I will pray to you and thank you when I am full.’“
“Once, when Hz. Umar went to the house of the Prophet, he saw that the Messenger of Allah was lying on the mat without a cover and the traces of the mat were visible on his right side, that all the things in the room consisted of a pillow stuffed with date fibers, an animal skin and a waterskin, and that there was only a little barley as food. He was moved by the scene and started to weep. When the prophet asked, “Why are you crying?”, he said, “Are you, as the chosen person and the Messenger of Allah, going to live like this while the Caesar of Byzantium and the Chosroes of Persia live in pomp?” The Messenger of Allah said, “O Umar! Are you weeping for it? Do you not know that they are people who have been given all their shares in the life of this world?”
When he was offered to get a silk garment to wear on Fridays and during the visits of the delegations coming from other cities, he said, “Let the person who has no share in the hereafter wear it.” He would say that whoever had a sound mind, a healthy body, and daily food had all the blessings of the world. He summarized the share of man in the world as clothes that worn out, food that is consumed, and wealth that is spent as charity. As it is expressed in verse 77 of the chapter of al-Qasas, he sought the abode of the hereafter with what Allah gave him. When he died, he was wearing a garment with two patches on it. His armor was in pawn in the hands of a Jew, from whom he had borrowed some barley for his family’s livelihood. And he had only a handful of barley as food in his house.
That state of his was a natural result of his belief, his view of worldly life, self-sacrifice and generosity, not the result of compulsion and dislike of worldly blessings. Despite his simplicity, he would sometimes eat good food and wear nice clothes. He appreciated blessings and saw them as a bounty and favor from Allah. What he did was simply to do the best that could be done in the environment in which he lived.
The humility and simplicity of the Messenger of Allah was not a garment of self-conceit, vanity and arrogance, or even the selfishness that somehow pervaded everywhere; on the contrary, it was a natural preservation of a unique sincerity. It was this trait that made him unnoticeable when he was among his friends. When he arrived at an assembly, he would sit in a vacant place he found; he would not want others to stand up for him by saying, “I am not a king”, and he would not allow his hand to be kissed. Once, he said to someone who became excited upon seeing him, “Do not get excited! I am the son of a woman who ate dry meat.” When he was addressed as “the best of the created beings”, he said, “Ibrahim (Abraham) was the best of the created beings.” He did not want any other form of address to be used for him except “the servant and messenger of Allah”, which had been expressed by Allah. He often warned his friends regarding the issue and advised them to be careful so that Satan would not deceive them.
The sun was eclipsed on the day his son Ibrahim died. When some people thought, “Look! The sun is also participating in the mourning of the Messenger of Allah”, he intervened immediately and said, “The solar eclipse is one of the signs of Allah. It does not occur due to the death or birth of anyone.” Thus, he prevented the love, respect and devotion of people to him from slipping into different ways.
His following statement is a good indication of his sensitivity regarding the issue: “Do not go too far in praising me like the Christians went too far in praising Isa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary). I am only a slave. Say, ‘He is Allah’s slave and Messenger’ only.” Again, his humility and simplicity were not temporary qualities attributed to him by passivity and helplessness, but a natural development of the love of Allah, consciousness of servitude, delicacy and spiritual depth toward life. That as his achievements increased and people’s love and devotion accrued, he turned to his Lord with great sincerity and humility and that he never abandoned that simplicity and humility at any stage of his life clearly show it.
When we think of the Messenger of Allah when he conquered Khaybar and entering Khaybar on a donkey whose bridle was made of the bark of the palm tree, or while entering Makkah after all the hardships and longings with the great conquest, bowing his head so low as to touch the saddle of his camel, and his face radiant with compassion, we realize that we watch a unique scene. At that moment, he was only celebrating the praise of his Lord, asking for forgiveness.
“When comes the Help of Allah, and Victory, And thou dost see the people enter Allah.s Religion in crowds, Celebrate the praises of thy Lord, and pray for His Forgiveness: For He is Oft-Returning (in Grace and Mercy).” (an-Nasr, 110/1-3).
“When he was on an old camel of burden, wearing a simple cardigan that was not even worth four dirhams during Farewell Hajj, he prayed as follows: “O Allah! Make this hajj away from hypocrisy, show off and fame.”
The place where human personality can be observed most clearly is one’s home. As Hz. Aisha put it, the Messenger of Allah did whatever a normal, ordinary person would do at home. He paddled his own canoe. He sewed his clothes, patched them, and mended his shoes. He would milk his goats, rub oil on his camel’s neck, and sweep the house. At home, he would be busy with his family, and when the call to prayer was called, he would go to mosque. The excess and heaviness of his responsibilities did not allow any neglect in his life. He was tidy and organized; everything that needed to be experienced had a place in his life. He loved his spouses and took care of them; he guided them in practicing the religion, getting rid of evil and in maturation with good deeds; he acted with family responsibility. He wanted the best and the most beautiful things and the highest ethical virtues for them; he did his best for them with love, compassion and care. Every evening, he would visit his spouses and chat with them. He would awaken them for prayer at night and always encourage them to do good deeds. He said, “A morsel that a man puts in his wife’s mouth is sadaqah (charity).” He would hold himself responsible for his family’s happiness in the world and the hereafter. Hz. Aisha states that the Prophet did not hit any of his wives and did not say rude words to them. Besides, the Messenger of Allah said, “The best of you is the one who is the most merciful to his family.” He was also the most merciful to his family.
He loved his children very much, played with them and took care of them. He regarded love of children as a sign of mercy. A Bedouin said, “Although I have ten children, I have never kissed any of them.” The Prophet said to him, “What can I do if Allah has removed mercy from your heart?” He would take care of every problem of his children, who grew up breathing the spiritual air at home filled with ethics and virtue, in the aura of love and compassion that surrounded them; and he would fulfill all his responsibilities as a father. He regarded raising his daughters well and marrying them off in a nice way as one of the keys to Paradise. His sons died when they were very young. He raised his daughters, married them off and had grandchildren. He took care of them after their marriage too by visiting them. When he got up to pray at night, he would wake them up and tell them that they should always do good deeds and prepare for the abode of the hereafter. He said, “I will not be able to do anything for you in the hereafter.” All his efforts were aimed at making them good servants of Allah and virtuous people. He expected patience and sacrifice from them before anyone else for it. He would pray as follows: “O Allah! Give enough sustenance to Muhammad’s family.” He would warn his family against all kinds of extremism, luxury, extravagance, stinginess, and indulgence in worldly possessions.
Where there was danger, problem and difficulty, he would put his family to the forefront, and where there was benefit, comfort and ease, he would take them back. Once, he went to visit Fatima, his daughter; when she saw an ornamented curtain inside, he returned without entering her house. When he was asked why, “What can be my relation with the world?” He advised his daughter to sell the curtain and give the money away to those in need. When Hz. Fatima wanted a prisoner of war to be given to her family as a servant due to the intensity of her work and the trouble she faced due to grinding grain in the mill, the Prophet rejected her request by saying, “I cannot fulfill your request when there are hungry and needy people lying in the mosque.” He turned down their demands. In the evening, he went to his daughter and son-in-law and said to them, “Shall I tell you something better than what you want from me? Say Allahu Akbar 33 times, Alhamdulillah 33 times and Subhanallah 33 times when you go to bed.”
It is also very important in this respect that the Prophet and his family did not accept any sadaqah and that it was forbidden for them. The following statement of Anas, who served the Messenger of Allah for 10 years, leaves no need to explain the treatment of the Messenger of Allah to his household: “I served the Messenger of Allah for ten years. He did not ask me even once why I had done this or why I had not done that for the things that I had done or had not done.”
Once, while addressing the congregation in the mosque, he saw his beloved grandsons Hasan and Husayn trying to walk toward him; he could not stand it, interrupted his sermon, ascended down and picked his grandchildren up. Then, he recited the following verse: “And know ye that your possessions and your progeny are but a trial.”
Allah Almighty states the following in verse 25 of the chapter of an-Nisa:
“Serve Allah, and join not any partners with Him; and do good- to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbors who are near, neighbors who are strangers, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (ye meet), and what your right hands possess: For Allah loveth not the arrogant, the vainglorious.”
Ihsan (doing good) was the attitude of the Messenger of Allah in all his relationships without any exception. It was a combination of the superior ethical qualities such as love, compassion, mercy, lenience, kindness, delicacy, self-sacrifice, generosity and courage. He said, “You cannot enter Paradise unless you believe truly; you cannot believe truly unless you love one another truly. Shall I teach you the way of loving one another truly? Greet one another.” He regarded giving food to people and greeting everyone, whether one knows them or not, among the best deeds of Islam. The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) would take care of everyone around him, would greet first when he met someone, would not let the other person’s hand go unless he released his hand when he shook hands with someone; when he spoke to someone he would not leave until the person finished his speech and left, and when he turned to somebody, he would turn with his whole body.
His all-encompassing love and concern that encompassed everybody was an inseparable part of his ethics. Although he lost his parents at a young age, he did not forget them. Years later, he stood by a ruined tomb on the way and said, “This is the tomb of Amina, the daughter of Wahb” by shedding tears. He never forgot those who contributed to him, and always remembered them well. His paternal uncle Abu Talib’s wife, his nanny Umm Ayman, his wet nurse Halima and her family had a special place in his heart. When his wet nurse came, he would greet her with respect, host her with care, take off her cardigan and lay it on the ground for her to sit on. He regarded kindness to one’s father’s friends after his death as a necessity of mercy and said, “Allah’s mercy does not descend on a community that includes a person who cuts off relations with his relatives.” He stated that the mother, father, and close relatives of a person had rights over him respectively. He was sincere and loyal to his friends. The fact that he always remembered his first wife, Hz. Khadija, with whom he lived together for 26 years, well even years after her death, that when he slaughtered a sheep, he sent a part of it to Hz. Khadija’s friends and that he wept when her daughter Zaynab sent her mother’s necklace to the Messenger of Allah for the ransom of her husband who was captured in the war are unique examples of his loyalty.
The Messenger of Allah, a prophet, a human being, a commander, a judge, a friend, a neighbor, a relative... He fulfilled all of his responsibilities as a human being and shared his life with all aspects. He did not separate himself from his friends; he said, ‘Allah does not like those who consider themselves privileged’. He sat together with his Companions and ate and drank with the poor and orphans. He took part in their conversations and sat in a vacant place that he found when he entered an assembly. Everyone in his assembly would receive a share of his care and love, and each would feel that the Messenger of Allah loved him the most. He would sympathize with their problems, rejoice with their joys, and share his life with them day and night. Whenever there was a task needed to be done, he would try to do it; he worked together with his Companions in the construction of Masjid an-Nabawi and digging of the trench around the city of Madinah; he would always come to the forefront at times of danger such as wars and would serve as a model and served as a shield for his Companions.
He said, “He who does not respect the elderly and does not love the younger ones is not one of us.” He treated everyone around him nicely. When he was in Makkah, he sent his friend Habbab bin Arat to a place; since Habbab had no one to do this job until he returned, the Prophet went to Habbab’s house every day to milk his goats. When the migrants of Abyssinia returned to Madinah after the conquest of Khaybar, he showed his love to his friends by saying, “Which one should I be happy about, the conquest of Khaybar or the arrival of Jafar?”
When one of his Companions died, if he left any property, he would distribute it to his heirs in a nice way; if he had a debt, he would undertake the debt and try to pay it; when he could not pay, he would encourage the Muslims to pay the debt by saying, “I cannot lead janazah prayer of a debtor”.
It was the general characteristic of his relationship with those around him to cooperate based on good deeds and piety, and not to cooperate based on evil, sin and enmity. He did his best to educate his Companions, to purify them from evil and to make them mature with goodness; he worked hard for their happiness in this world and the hereafter. So as not to harm his love and sincerity toward them, he would say, “Do not tell me anything about each other because I would like to meet all of you with a clean heart.” He did not search about the mistakes of anybody and did not judge anybody due to their mistakes. When somebody made a mistake and committed a sin, he would settle it without mentioning a name or offending anybody; he would also protect their hearts by not giving rise to doubtful things.
He treated those who served him as if they were his children. He said,
“Your slaves are your brothers. Give them the same food as you eat and the same clothes as you wear. Do not address them as slave but as my son or my daughter. Do not force them to do hard jobs; if you do, help them.” He said,
“Fear Allah about your slaves.”
He regarded freeing slaves as one of the greatest good deeds; he treated his slaves very well and freed them, serving as a model for his Companions.
He loved children, and when he saw them playing on the street, he would greet them, put them on his mount, and play with them. Sometimes a maid or a slave would come to him and ask for his help; he would stand up and help them. He would meet the needs of widows and always help the elderly. There was a woman in Madinah who was senile due to old age. One day, she came to the Messenger of Allah and said, “Muhammad! I have a job to do with you.” The Messenger of Allah went out with her, sat down to listen to her and fulfilled her request.
He regarded righteous women as the most beautiful blessings of the world and would say “Fear Allah about women”. Once, many female relatives of the Prophet were sitting around him and talking loudly. When Hz. Umar entered the room, they all fell silent and withdrew; thereupon, the Messenger of Allah smiled. Hz. Umar said, “O Messenger of Allah! May Allah always make you smile! Why did you laugh?” The Messenger of Allah said that he laughed because the women were afraid of him. When Umar said to the women, “Fear the Messenger of Allah, not me,” one of the women said, “He is not as angry as you.” When the Messenger of Allah saw little girls singing on the side of the road as he entered Madinah, he said to them, “Do you love me?”. They said, “Yes, O Messenger of Allah, we love you.” Thereupon, he said, “I love you too.”
The Messenger of Allah would say, “Be tolerant because Allah loves tolerant people.” He served as a model for his Companions with his tolerance, lenience and understanding. He evaluated people as a whole, with their weaknesses, needs, and ideals, and treated them as an understanding guide, not as a critic and a judge. Understanding, forgiving, and guiding were the essence of his attitude toward people. Once, somebody asked him, “How many times a day should I forgive my servant?” He answered, “Seventy times!” Once, someone entered the garden of a person without permission, collected some dates, ate some dates and put some in the pockets of his clothes; the owner of the garden scolded him and made him take off his clothes and then complained to the Messenger of Allah about him. The Messenger of Allah said to him, “He did not know; you should have taught him; he was hungry, you should have fed him.” Thus taught the owner of the garden how to behave.
When Bedouins living as nomads in the desert came to Madinah, the Messenger of Allah would take care of them and tolerate their rudeness. Once, while the Prophet was walking on the road, a Bedouin came and pulled the Prophet’s cardigan from behind and said, “Muhammad! Give some me the property of Allah that you have with you to me.” The cardigan left a mark on his neck; however, and the Prophet turned round by smiling and said to his friends, “Yes, give him what he wants.”
As Hz. Aisha put it, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) never sought personal revenge. He would respond evil with goodness. He was always generous and magnanimous. The hypocrites, Jews and polytheists who set traps for him throughout his life received their shares from his generosity and compassion. In the books describing his life, we see that he gave his shirt as a shroud to Abdullah bin Ubayy, the leader of the hypocrites, when he passed away, his nice and fair treatment of the Jews in response to all their intrigues, and when he entered Makkah as a result of all the struggles, he said to the polytheists, “Go, you are all free” and addressed them with the following verse: “This day let no reproach be (cast) on you: Allah will forgive you, and He is the Most Merciful of those who show mercy.” (Yusuf, 12/92) We also see that he prayed to Allah for those who stoned and despised him and those who fought him, trying to kill him as follows: “O Allah! Forgive them because they do not know.” Thus, we understand that the verse “Hold to forgiveness; command what is right; But turn away from the ignorant” (al-A’raf, 7/199) can be practiced and we understand the reality of the following statement of the Messenger of Allah better: “My Lord ordered me to forgive my enemies though I have the power to take revenge, to talk to those who sever their relationships with me and to give to those who deprived me of boons.”
Allah Almighty states the following in verse 159 of the chapter of Aal-i Imran:
“It is part of the Mercy of Allah that thou dost deal gently with them Wert thou severe or harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about thee: so pass over (Their faults), and ask for ((Allah)’s) forgiveness for them; and consult them in affairs (of moment). Then, when thou hast Taken a decision put thy trust in Allah. For Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him).”
It is enough for those wondering the secret of the “gentleness” mentioned in the verse and stemming from Allah’s mercy and how people, both young and old, men and women, the poor and the rich, formed one body of love around Him, to think of the prophet who warned his Companion who lengthened the prayer and made some of the congregation wearisome by saying to him, “Do not lengthen the prayer when you lead the congregation. There are people who are old and sick in the congregation” and who said, “I sometimes start leading a prayer with the intention of performing a long prayer but when I hear a child crying, I keep the prayer short, knowing the feeling of compassion of the child’s mother following me in the congregation.”
It is possible to see the unique ethics of the Messenger of Allah in the following examples and similar ones: When he saw Mus’ab bin Umayr, who was ostracized by his family and who fell into poverty due to his being a Muslim despite being brought up in grace and blessings, dressed in tattered clothes, he showed respect to his self-sacrifice by shedding tears; as Jabir bin Abdullah puts it, he never said, “no” when something was asked from him; he went to bed hungry with his family so many nights because he never rejected those who wanted something to eat from him; when he could not find a poor person to give the money he had, he would sleep in the mosque because of feeling ashamed of going to his house with that money and sleeping; when a poor man was found in the morning and his need was met with that money, he would praise Allah and go home.
The Prophet recommended exchanging gifts, saying that it would increase love and strengthen friendships. Although he did not accept sadaqah, he would accept gifts and give better gifts in return. He would share what he had with the poor and needy around him, and when he had nothing to give, he would please them with nice words. He arranged his income sources to be distributed to the poor, except for a part he allocated to his family’s subsistence. He said that stinginess and bad trait would not be found in a believer, and he used all the means he had to improve the state of people. Sometimes he would pay back more than what he had borrowed; sometimes he would give more than the agreed price, and sometimes he would buy something from someone he understood to be in need, and then give it back to him as a gift.
As Ibn Abbas put it, he was more generous than the wind in terms of charitable deeds. He advised his friend Abu Dharr to love the poor and to be close to them. He gave the following advice to his wife Aisha, “O Aisha! Never send a needy person who wants something from you empty-handed; try to you give him/her something even if it is half a date. O Aisha! Love the poor and make them close to you so that Allah will make you close to Him on the Day of Judgment.” He often prayed as follows: “O Allah! Let me live as a poor person, allow me to die as a poor person, and resurrect me among the poor.” He wanted “richness of the heart”, which he defined as real wealth, from Allah Almighty.
The poorest of his Companions, as well as those who were constantly busy with education, were known as Ashab as-Suffa. They usually stayed in the mosque; they did not leave the Prophet. The Messenger of Allah shared everything he had with them and ate his food with them. He had a big cauldron. The food was cooked there and eaten together. They were his permanent guests. So were all believers. He said, “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should treat to his guest.” He also said, “Goodness will come to a house where food is served before the knife reaches the hump of a camel.” He would say that it was part of the sunnah to accompany the guest to the door when he left.
He mentioned the superiority of caring for orphans and showing compassion to them, adding that caring for widows and poor people was like fighting in the way of Allah or fasting during the day and praying at night. He said to Abu Dharr as they were walking one night, “O Abu Dharr! Even if this Uhud mountain were gold and were given to me, I would not want even one dirham of it to stay with me for three days, except the amount I will keep to pay my debt.”
The Messenger of Allah saw the covenant with Allah in the falling raindrops and said, “Good deeds done to every living being have thawabs”. When he came across a camel with its back stuck to its stomach, he said to its owner, “Fear Allah about these dumb animals; ride them properly and feed them properly.” Once he stated the following:
“If you travel in a place with plenty of grass, give your camel its share from the ground. If you travel in a dry region, move quickly. If you stop at a place at night, do not stay by the roadside because the road is where animals come and go at night and where insects nest.”
He treated living beings well and regarded life as something entrusted by Allah.
The Messenger of Allah did not speak loudly and did not stretch his feet in the presence of his friends. As Abu Said al-Khudri, one of his Companions, put it, “He was shyer than virgin girls; you would understand from his face whether he liked something or not.” He would not laugh so much as to make the inside of his mouth visible. By declaring that shyness was a part of belief, he once said, “Shyness is a part of belief and the person who has shyness is in Paradise. Shamelessness is due to the hardness of the heart. The one who has a hard heart is in Hell.”
Once, he said to Hz. Aisha, “I would not want to talk about anyone’s fault, even if I were to be punished about it.” He never used vulgar expressions and regarded the feeling of shyness (shame) as a control mechanism of behaviors. The statement “Do whatever you want if you do not feel ashamed” is a common statement of the prophets and expresses that fact in the best way. His shyness and bashfulness would not lead him to isolation and passivity; he would not abandon what he had to do. After all, his life is full of the most concrete examples of gratitude and patience, a deep devotion to and trust in Allah, determination and perseverance, and finally a matchless courage with what he lived in Makkah and Madinah.
When the process of his conveying the message of the religion is examined, you will see something too difficult to describe with words. A deep awe, unshakable faith and perseverance... We think that the following historical answer he gave in response to any offer made to him would be sufficient to express that reality: “If they put the sun on my right hand and the moon on my left, I would still not give up on my cause.” Hz. Ali said, “While the war was going on severely in Badr, we sometimes took refuge behind the Messenger of Allah. He was the bravest of us. He was the closest to the enemy ranks.”
His shyness did not prevent his courage; his seriousness and dignity would not prevent his joy and smile either. His union with Allah did not prevent his warm and lively relationships with people. Abdullah bin Harith stated that he had never seen a nicer and more smiling person than the Messenger of Allah. He would joke with his Companions and laugh with them. When younger brother of Anas was saddened by the death of his little bird, the Prophet asked him: “O Abu Umayr! What happened to your little sparrow?” That incident shows that he was so interested in what happened in his surroundings. He was persistent enough to say, “If a prophet puts on his armor, he will not take it off,” and self-sacrificing enough to say, “The servants of Allah do not live in debauchery.”
Pessimism could not find a place in his heart; and under all circumstances, he would act responsibly at every moment of his life with his faith and sincerity. He had enough understanding of “goodness” and “responsibility” to recommend planting the sapling one has in his hand even during Doomsday. As his illness, which would cause his death, worsened, he appointed Hz. Abu Bakr as the imam, and when he recovered a little and saw his companions praying in awe from the door of his room, he praised and thanked Allah. At the time of his death, his last army, which he had prepared and appointed Usama bin Zayd as the commander, was waiting outside the city, ready for the expedition. Maybe that army was the last sapling He planted on the earth.
Throughout his life, he referred to “taqwa” as the only measure of superiority and virtue for people; he said, “Superiority is only through taqwa.” Thus, he entrusted all kinds of trusts to those who were competent. That universal principle shone beautifully in the commandership of Usama. Hz. Khadija’s son, Hind bin Hala, describes the Messenger of Allah as follows:
“The Messenger of Allah was of consecutive sorrows, continuous thought, never finding rest, long in silence. He did not speak without cause. He spoke with his full mouth (was not arrogant), and spoke concisely. His speech was just, with neither excess nor deficiency. He was not pompous, nor denigrating. He exalted all blessings no matter how small and he never belittled a single person. He would never praise his food nor criticize it. He was never angered by matters of this life nor that which was associated with it. However, if justice was transgressed, nothing could stand up to his anger until justice was established. He never became angry for his own self nor sought retribution for himself. If he gestured, he did so with his whole palm. If he was amazed, he overturned it. If he spoke, he struck with his right palm the inside of his left thumb. If he became angry, he gave up at once, and when he was happy, he lowered his gaze. When he laughed, he did not laugh loudly; he only smiled. When he smiled, his pearly teeth became visible.
When the Messenger of Allah received the first divine revelation, his beloved wife Hz. Khadija consoled him as follows:
“God Almighty will never disgrace you because you are kind and considerate to your relatives, pay the debts of debtors and help the poor You treat your guests with honor, support the honest people and help those who are in distress.”
Hz. Aisha states the following about the Messenger of Allah:
“The Prophet did not scold anyone. He would not reward evil with evil. He would overlook the bad deeds done to him and forgive the doers. If he had to prefer between two things, he would choose the easier one unless it was a sin. He would not take revenge for the crimes committed against him but when somebody acted contrarily to divine commands, he would punish that person. The Messenger of Allah never damned a person by name; he never beat a woman, slave, maid, servant or animal; he never rejected a legitimate request of anyone. Whenever he entered his house, he would smile. He did not stretch his feet in the presence of his friends; he spoke so slowly that those who listened to him could memorize what he said.”
When Hz. Husayn asked his father Hz. Ali to describe his grandfather, Hz. Ali described the Messenger of Allah as follows:
“The Messenger of Allah always spoke and acted moderately; he never went to extremes, uttered vulgar words or did something bad. He did not make a special effort to do so. He did not generally walk around in the market place. He did not reward evil with evil; he would forgive people. He never struck anything with his hand except when he was fighting in the name of Allah. He never struck a servant or a woman. I never saw him taking revenge for an injustice done to him. When the prohibitions of Allah were transgressed, he would get very furious. When he was left free to make a choice between two things, he would choose the easier of the two. When he entered into his home, he would clean his own garment, milk his sheep, and do his own tasks.”
“He did not speak when it was unnecessary. He would speak in a way that would make the Muslims more friendly to one another and prevent them from hating one another. He would treat to the good people of every tribe and appoint them as their leaders. He warned people against wrong deeds and words and he himself avoided them. He did not deprive people of his beautiful face and high ethics. He would inquire after his companions and would ask people about their affairs. He would encourage what was good and strengthen it. He would discourage what was evil and undermine it. He was balanced and consistent. He would be afraid that the Muslims would fall into heedlessness; he did not neglect to warn them. He was always ready for worship and good deeds. He never fell short of justice nor exceeded it. The closest people to him were the best among them. The best among them in his eyes were the most comprehensive ones in advice. The highest of them in stature with him was the best among them in looking after the people and helping them.”
“The Prophet would mention Allah when he stood or sat. If he visited an assembly, he would sit wherever the group ended (and not at their head) and he ordered his Companions to do the same. He would give all those sitting with him their just due to the extent that they would each feel that none was more important to him than them. If someone were to sit with him or come in search of a favor, he would be patient with them until they would be the one to leave. If somebody came to him with a request, he would fulfill it at once; if it was not possible, he would tell that person about it in a nice way. His cheerfulness and good manners encompassed everybody. He became a compassionate and merciful father to them. Everybody was equal in his eye in terms of rights.”
“His assemblies were those of knowledge, humbleness, patience, and integrity. There would be no raising of voices and denigration in them. The fault of nobody would be disclosed. Everybody was equal in his assembly. The only criterion of superiority was taqwa. He respected the elderly and showed compassion and mercy to children. He gave preference to those in need, and protected the strangers.”
“The Messenger of Allah always had a smiling face, was gentle in manners, soft in nature; he was compassionate and merciful. He was not severe or rude. He did not wander around very much. He did not search people’s faults and sins. He was not miserly. He would overlook what he disliked. He did not discourage people. He would keep silent in the face of a bad word or rude behavior.”
He would avoid the following three things about himself:
1. Arguing and struggling with people,
2. Unnecessary talk,
3. Useless things and the things that did not concern him.
He would avoid the following three things about others:
1. Criticizing other people,
2. Searching people’s faults, sins and secrets,
3. Insulting people.
When the Messenger of Allah spoke, the people in his assembly would lower their heads as if birds had alighted upon them. They would speak only when he finished speaking. They would never argue in his presence. If one of them spoke, the others would keep silent until he finished speaking. The Prophet would listen to the speech of the first one and the last one as carefully; he never showed any signs of weariness. He would laugh at the things that his Companions laughed and would be amazed by what they were amazed. He showed patience in the face of the rudeness of the strangers in their speech and questions so that his Companions would act in the same way. He said, “When you see somebody who is in need looking for something, meet his need or help him.” He would not accept praise except unless it was balanced and true. He would not interrupt anyone’s speech unless they transgressed. If they transgressed, he would either interrupt them or leave. He was the most generous of heart and truthful of tongue among people. He was the softest in disposition, and noblest in lineage. Those who saw him suddenly would be excited but those who became acquainted with him would love him.
Anas bin Malik said, “I have not touched any silk softer than the hand of the Messenger of Allah. I have never smelt any scent nicer than his scent.”
We can state the following at the end of this small journey made in historical experience and witnessing in order to learn the ethics of the Messenger of Allah a bit: Words end and the pen breaks; the following statement of Allah Almighty goes from ears to hearts:
“Now hath come unto you a Messenger from amongst yourselves: it grieves him that ye should perish: ardently anxious is he over you: to the Believers is he most kind and merciful.” (at-Tawba, 9/128)
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Realms! Greetings be to His blessed messengers who guide people with their messages and shed light on them with their lives!
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