What could you say about the Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) personality?

Details of the Question
What could you say about the Prophet Muhammad’s (pbuh) personality?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

The Prophet’s (pbuh) behaviors and attitudes have been widely recounted in the books which tell us about his life and in history books. However, a majority of attributions to those behaviors and attitudes only deal with the Prophet’s (pbuh) humanistic side and the things recounted in those books only deal with the Prophet’s (pbuh) materialistic personality, not his moral and spiritual ways. The Prophet’s moral personality and his holiness is so exalted that his attributions to his materialistic personality recounted in history books are too distant to describe precisely his exaltedness.

In respect to his being a servant to God, as the statement “A person who causes something to happen is as if he has he has done it” suggests, the prayers of all the Muslims every day and even now are being added to his thawabs. As he deserves God’s infinite mercy within infinite quantity with a limitless capability, he is being devoted numberless prayers by his ummah every single day.

As the divine hadith defines “ Lawlaka lawlak, lama khalaktul aflaq” (but for you, I would not have created the heavens), the information is not sufficient in the books to completely describe the sacred personality and exaltedness of the very purpose of creation of this universe, the most perfect human, and the translator  of the Creator of the Universe.

For example, it would be wrong to leave aside His being guarded by Gabriel and Michael during the battle of Badr and His ascending  so high a rank to see God during Miraj, leaving Gabriel behind, and instead, to describe Him only with his human features like putting on armor at war, becoming wounded and ill, suffering hunger, making trade, chatting with his Honored companions like friends, caring for his wives and children and playing with his grandchildren as the father of the family.

So, in order not to make mistakes against the things mentioned about the Prophet’s (pbuh) human side as stated above, it is necessary to consider his real self and his divine spiritual personality, that is, his being the Messenger of God with his duty as a prophet and the translator and interpreter of God’s Book of Guidance. Otherwise, this will lead people to disrespect or into doubt.

For a better understanding of the statements about him, we can give these two examples: Consider a seed of a date fruit. This seed of date fruit becomes a big fruit producing tree in time if it is planted in the soil. Also, it spreads its branches and shoots while it grows. Or let us consider a peacock egg. From that egg, a chicken peacock is born in due time. Then, it will turn out to be a perfectly created peacock which will have feathers, all of which will be embroidered like a piece of art work.

This seed and egg have their simple structures peculiar to them. However, the tree and the bird that come later have wonderful features, compared to the final form of the seed and the egg.

When we show and tell an ordinary person about the relation between the features of the seed or the egg and the features of the tree and the bird he should consider that the tree or egg, by taking into account the phases, a seed becomes a tree or an egg becomes a wonderful peacock. Otherwise, if he is told “ Hundreds of date fruits come out of a single little seed” and “This egg is a peacock which has been created in such a beauty that it might the sultan of all birds”, he is sure to deny and contradict since his mind does not comprehend it.

As in the example, if we compare the necessary situations due to the Prophet (pbuh) being a human to that seed or that egg, his divine personality shining due to his duty as a prophet will resemble a tree in the heaven or a bird of Paradise. Also, this spiritual side of his always continues to rise more and more. As stated above, the worshipping of his ummah, and the deeds they commit and the prayers they send are added to his thawabs and this makes his rank to ascend higher as time passes. For this reason, beside the necessary situations he was in due to being a human, we should also consider his divine spiritual personality that mounted on Rafraf, leaving Gabriel behind, ascending to Qaba Qawsayn and meeting Allah. Otherwise, it would be so disrespectful of us to him or we would deny it with the help of our will and satan. 

The personality and the morality of the Prophet (pbuh) 

The Prophet (pbuh) is the human of all with his personality and morality as much as his material body. Regarding this issue, our Lord states in the Qur’an: “You are surely of a sublime character and do act by a sublime pattern of conduct.” (the Qur’an, al-Qalam, 68:4) The Prophet (pbuh) himself stated : “I have been sent just to complete the high ethics and morals.” (Muwatta’, Husnu’l Khulq, 8) We know that the Prophet (pbuh) was under God’s control and protection since his childhood. For this reason, He stated : “My Lord disciplined me and He disciplined me well.” (Suyuti, al-Jamiu’s Saghir, 1:14) and he never committed a anti-Islamic or anti-humane word or behavior or deed all his life.  Muhammad (pbuh), who was appreciated for his honesty, truthfulness, his respect for the elders, his helpfulness and every sort of high ethics and deserved being called “al-Amin = the trustable one” by the Qurayshi before he became the prophet, held tightly all the moral values his Lord ordered all the believers and all the people in the Qur’an and he fulfilled all of them so properly. For this reason, Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her), the mother of the believers, replied “His morality was the Qur’an” when one of the Honored Companions asked her about his morals. (Muslim, Musafirin, 136).

Despite the fact that the Prophet (pbuh) had the authority as the Messenger of Allah and the president of the State of Islam, he was ultimately modest and sincere. He always preferred a simple life. His garments, household, his food and all his living were simple. He used to deal with any person either rich or poor, young or old; he would never return any rightful application and fulfilled all the legal demands. He was ultimately generous and benevolent. He never did any evil to anybody or he wished any evil for anybody and he never said a bad word for anyone, never insulted any person and he would never look down on any people. If he got angry, this was not a personal thing but for Allah. He liked or approved things only for the sake of Allah. Courage and bravery, patience, determination and hope, tolerance and compliment, compassion and mercy were the significant moral values of the Prophet (pbuh). As the basic qualities of the Prophets, He had a sharp comprehension, a unique reasoning and a quick understanding ability. Even in the most dangerous and critical times, he would never fall into despair and do the best thing that could be done and he would leave the rest to God Almighty. 

The Character of the Prophet (pbuh)

  • He was always considerate
  • His silence used to last longer than his speech
  • He would not talk unnecessarily; he neither used extra nor insufficient words when he talked
  • He did not use to get angry due to worldly matters
  • He did not use to utter bad words
  • His forgiveness was natural
  • He would never take revenge
  • He not only forgave the enemies but he also showed respect to them
  • He abstained himself from these three things: He did not conflict against anybody. He did not use to talk much. He would not deal with unnecessary things
  • His belief never let him fall into despair
  • He would remain silent against something he did not like
  • He never condemned or insulted anybody either to their face or behind their backs
  • He did not search for the faults of a person
  • He did not tell anybody any word which could be bad for them
  • He would pay attention to the last speaker as if it were the first
  • When in a community, if people laughed about something, he would laugh as well and if they were surprised by anything, he seemed surprised.
  • He did not accept any unreal compliment
  • He was always dignified
  • He seemed to have surrounded the people around when he talked
  • His words were sweet and serene like glittering pearls
  • He used to walk behind his companions; he used to lift his feet lively; he would not swing side to side; he used to take his steps widely; he used to bend like he descended from a higher place and he used to walk in dignity and tranquility
  • He never returned any person who came to ask for help from him
  • One day, grabbing by the shoulder of one of his friends who was younger than he was, he said: “Be like a poor person or like a passenger in the world”
  • He always appeared somber and smiling
  • He never used any bad words which people used due to their customs
  • He never treated people rudely or yelled at them even at difficult times
  • He used to eat with the poor; it was impossible to distinguish him from them.
  • He used to eat whatever he was served to eat
  • He used to wear simple garments; he did not like showing-off
  • He did not use to turn his face while he was speaking and he would not sit on a privileged place in the community he was in
  • He used to say when he got out of the house in the morning: “O Allah! I turn to you from deviating and being made deviate from the right path, deceiving and being deceived, from committing wrong and being committed wrong and from treating and being treated disrespectfully.”
  • He was not ordinary but he lived like ordinary people
  • He was the Prophet (pbuh). He was our Master.

May thousands of peace and blessings be upon him, the sun of the two worlds… 

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