What was the view of the Prophet (pbuh) on the girls being buried, alive, slavery and fornication before Islam?

The Details of the Question

-  What is the view of the Quran on technology?

- Why did great inventions like telephone, automobile and computer were made by Christians, Jews and atheists?

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

1) The Prophet (pbuh) was at the peak of high ethics before Islam too. That the Prophet took part in the non-governmental organization called “Hilful-Fudul” (League of the Virtuous), established by the notable, prestigious and good people of the society in order to ensure the security of life and wealth, to protect the weak people and to prevent oppression in 580 AD, when he was about ten years old, shows that the Prophet (pbuh) had high ethics during the Era of Jahiliyya too.

- Besides, that he was given the nickname “Muhammadul-Amin” (Trustworthy Muhammad) when he was a child shows that he kept away from all kinds of bad deeds – with the help of Allah – in the Era of Jahiliyya too.

- Those who buried their daughters alive were those who did not want them to marry others. That the Prophet (pbuh) married her daughters off before Islam shows that he did not have that wrong thought.

- Sources of siyar (biography) and history state that the Prophet (pbuh) never took alcoholic drinks and committed fornication. (see Sheikh Aid al-Qarani, Qiraah fis-Sirah)

- According to a narration, the Prophet (pbuh) narrated a reminiscence from his earlier life as follows in summary:

“Once, the Prophet was herding sheep and he heard music and sounds of entertainment due to a wedding coming from a district near Makkah. A shepherd said to him, 'Go and join this entertainment; I will take care of your animals.' He said, 'All right.' Then, he started to walk there but when he approached the place of entertainment, he felt sleepy and fell asleep. When he woke up, the sun had risen and the entertainment had ended.”

Allah protected him again. (see Qiraah fis-Sirah)

- The nickname “Muhammadul-Amin” shows that he was the most trustworthy person regarding all issues including chastity.

- That the Prophet (pbuh) freed his slave Zayd, who had been given to him by his wife Hz. Khadija – slavery existed in that periodand treated him as if he was his son is an example showing his view on slavery. When Zayd’s father came, the Prophet (pbuh) left Zayd free to choose between his father and him but Zayd preferred the Prophet to his father, which is another evidence.

2) The view of the Quran on technology is positive. The sources written about the Quran’s indicating the recent scientific discoveries is an indication of its positive view. There is no other resource like the Quran, whose first command is ‘read’, that encourages science.   

- However, the Quran is not a book of physics, chemistry or astronomy. Therefore, one should not expect the Quran to encourage today’s technological developments with clear expressions or to mention them. Besides, if the technological developments to occur fourteen centuries later had been expressed clearly fourteen centuries ago, it would have been contrary to rhetoric, “which means compliance with the state of time and space” and the logic of guidance.

As Badiuzzaman Said Nursi points out, there is a law of perfection in the universe. The issues that had been unknown in the past turn out to be known in the course of time. However, the characteristic of guidance is to take the level of current science and thought into consideration. If the Quran had addressed the people living fifteen centuries ago as follows, it would have astonished most of the people:  

"Look at the position of the sun rotating around its own axis and the movement of the earth rotating around the sun like a moth! Look at a droplet of water that includes more than one million microscopic living beings so that you will see the evidences of Allah's infinite power."

For, they saw with their eyes that the sun was rotating, not the world. They did not see anything in a drop of water. Scientific discoveries occurred only after the tenth century of the Migration. To astonish the people living before that century, that is, to teach them the issues that could be understood only after the discoveries of the new positive sciences, is contrary to the principle of guidance and the rule of rhetoric.  

Thus, the Quran, which speaks according to the minds of people, showed its rhetoric. (see İşârâtu’l-İ’caz, Nübüvvetin tahkiki; Muhâkemat, 160-161)

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