Articles

Muhammad in their Eyes





nazmi luka:1





".. muhammad (peace be upon him) was not like anyone in his attributes and characteristics. he enjoyed all graces of the other prophets (peace be upon them all) and was a true hero; therefore, any impartial person should respect his example and greet his manhood.





"there is no deification or suspicion of deification in the meaning of the islamic prophethood.. the nations worldwide used to deify kings, heroes, and forefathers. the prophets were subjected to such mix between them and the deity by people. it was better for people to believe that the prophet or messenger is a man like the other people and has no divine being whatsoever; therefore, we find the holy quran all the time confirming the same meaning, such as these verses: {i am but a man like yourselves, (but) the inspiration has come to me} (al-kahf: 110). the word "like yourselves" means the absolute equality and avoiding exaggerating the prophethood and mission beyond the human being level. not only this, there is more clear-cut meaning for the same in another verse; {but if they turn away - then we have not sent you, [o muhammad], over them as a guardian; upon you is only [the duty of] notification} (as-shura: 48). this verse warned the prophet (peace be upon him) about the reality of his task and the limits of his mission and that he may neither exceed the same, nor the people may raise him beyond such limits.





".. although the prophet was the tongue of heaven; above him is allah the almighty & below him are the believers and slaves of allah the almighty, the prophet (peace be upon him) did not feel pride or haughtiness; contrary, he was keen to avoid the same and dedicated himself to fight pride in himself before uprooting it from his followers. if the prophet mohammad (peace be upon him) took pride and glorified himself for guiding the people, having their support or owning authority, he will not achieve all that. though his companions were praising him knowing that he is worthy of such praise, but he was telling them: "don't praise me like the praise of the christians to jesus christ; i am just the slave of allah, but call me the slave and messenger of allah" . the prophet (peace be upon him) once went to a group of his companions; seeing him, they stood out of respect and glory, but he prevented them and said:





"don't do like the non-arabs who stand for each other to glorify one another".





"no one can fabricate more allegations about him. he has tasted long-term ordeals until he was blessed with victory which was not even expected or possible to a man propagating the religion of allah within the capital of idols … his impartiality was beyond all worldly benefits; his virtue was far above all pleasures of life; and his forgiveness was pure from any pride or domination. he did not leave to his family or tribe any of the worldly life features, ranks or authority. he gave preference to the interests of people and forgot himself. he cancelled the high rank of his tribe before islam and made them like the other individuals of his followers in equality. he made the slaves and servants equal to the kings of quraish. he did not give power to himself or to his relatives. his relatives before islam was occupying high rank but he undermined ranks and made them equal to the others. after all of this, who can ever match such sublime glory or doubt such clear-cut truth! there is no option but to believe. this prophet (peace be upon him) was neither astray nor being misled, he did not speak of his own desire … who can be believed if this truthful prophet was not believed! (peace be upon him).





"which biography is worthy of being defended more than his biography? he has converted people from the worship of the abominated idols to the worship of allah; the lord of the worlds. he guided people from loss and corruption to belief and loftiness. he did not leave to himself or his relatives any of the worldly benefits sought by seekers of the life vanities.





"he (muhammad peace be upon him) was controlling and not controlled by his energy. he was using but not used by his functions. this is not but an advantage in his features. he (peace be upon him) has normal inclinations but he kept them under balance to use them in the manner which honors the rank of the human being. he seeks the beauty and magnificence in the manner which keeps his dignity and promotes his sublimation, virtue and purity. this is clearly embodied in the sublime manner of consummating the marriage of his nine wives (may allah be pleased with them all).. 2





1-dr. nazmi luka, christian from egypt. he is known of his objective viewpoints and impartiality. though his parents insisted on teaching him christianity since he was a child, he was always attending the lessons of the muslim preachers and listening carefully to the holy koran and the biography of the prophet peace be upon him. not only this, he has memorized the holy koran before attaining ten years of his age. he has written several books such as (muhammad the mission & messenger) and (the special life of mohammad ).





2-taken from the book of: muhammad the mission & messenger, and the book of the special life of muhammad .





You Must Know this Man





you may be an antheist or an agnostic; or you may belong to any of the religious denominations that exist in the world today. you may be a communist or a believer in democracy and freedom. no matter what you are, and no matter what your ideological and political beliefs, personal and social habits happen to be - you must still know this man.





encyclopedia britannica confirms:


"....a mass of detail in the early sources show that he was an honest and upright man who had gained the respect and loyalty of others who were like-wise honest and upright men." (vol. 12)





george bernard shaw said about him:


"he must be called the saviour of humanity. i believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it much needed peace and happiness." (the genuine islam, singapore, vol. 1, no. 8, 1936)





he was by far the most remarkable man that ever set foot on this earth. he preached a religion, founded a state, built a nation, laid down a moral code, initiated numerous social and political reforms, established a powerful and dynamic society to practice and represent his teachings and completely revolutionized the worlds of human thought and behavior for all times to come.





"his name is muhammad" may peace of god be upon him (pbuh)


he was born in arabia in the year 570 c.e. (common era), started his mission of preaching the religion of truth, islam (submission to one god) at the age of forty and departed from this world at the age of sixty-three.





during this short period of 23 years of his prophethood, he changed the complete arabian peninsula from paganism and idolatry to worship of one god, from tribal quarrels and wars to national solidarity and cohesion, from drunkenness and debauchery to sobriety and piety, from lawlessness and anarchy to disciplined living, from utter bankruptcy to the highest standards of moral excellence. human history has never known such a complete transformation of a people or a place before or since - and imagine all these unbelievable wonders in just over two decades.





lamartine, the renowned historian speaking on the essentials of human greatness wonders:





"if greatness of purpose, smallness of means and astounding results are the three criteria of human genius, who could dare to compare any great man in modern history with muhammad? the most famous men created arms, laws and empires only. they founded, if anything at all, no more than material powers which often crumbled away before their eyes. this man moved not only armies, legislation, empires, peoples and dynasties, but millions of men in one-third of the then inhabited world; and more than that, he moved the altars, the gods, the religions, the ideas, the beliefs and souls....his forbearance in victory, his ambition, which was entirely devoted to one idea and in no manner striving for an empire; his endless prayers, his mystic conversations with god, his death and his triumph after death; all these attest not to an imposture but to a firm conviction which gave him the power to restore a dogma. this dogma was two-fold, the unity of god and the immateriality of god; the former telling what god is, the latter telling what god is not; the one overthrowing false gods with the sword, the other starting an idea with the words.





"philosopher, orator, apostle, legislator, warrior, conqueror of ideas, restorer of rational dogmas, of a cult without images, the founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one spiritual empire, that is muhammad. as regards all the standards by which human greatness may be measured, we may well ask, is there any man greater than he?" (lamartine, histoire de la turquie, paris, 1854, vol. ii, pp 276-277)





the world has had its share of great personalities. but these were one-sided figures who distinguished themselves in but one or two fields, such as religious thought or military leadership. the lives and teachings of these great personalities of the world are shrouded in the mist of time.





there is so much speculation about the time and place of their birth, the mode and style of their life, the nature and detail of their teachings and the degree and measure of their success or failure that it is impossible for humanity to reconstruct accurately the lives and teachings of these men.





not so this man. muhammad (pbuh) accomplished so much in such diverse fields of human thought and behavior in the fullest blaze of human history. every detail of his private life and public utterances has been accurately documented and faithfully preserved to our day. the authenticity of the record so preserved are vouched for not only by the faithful followers but even by his prejudiced critics.





muhammad (pbuh) was a religious teacher, a social reformer, a moral guide, an administrative colossus, a faithful friend, a wonderful companion, a devoted husband, a loving father - all in one. no other man in history ever excelled or equaled him in any of these different aspects of life - but it was only for the selfless personality of muhammad (pbuh) to achieve such incredible perfections.





mahatma gandhi, speaking on the character of muhammad, (pbuh) says in young india:


"i wanted to know the best of one who holds today's undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind....i became more than convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for islam in those days in the scheme of life. it was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the prophet, the scrupulous regard for his pledges, his intense devotion to this friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in god and in his own mission.





these and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. when i closed the 2nd volume (of the prophet's biography), i was sorry there was not more for me to read of the great life."





thomas calyle in his heroes and hero worship, was simply amazed as to:


"how one man single-handedly, could weld warring tribes and wandering bedouins into a most powerful and civilized nation in less than two decades."





diwan chand sharma wrote:


"muhammad was the soul of kindness, and his influence was felt and never forgotten by those around him." (d.c. sharma, the prophets of the east, calcutta, 1935, pp. 12)





edward gibbon and simon ockley speaking on the profession of islam write:


"'i believe in one god, and mahomet, an apostle of god' is the simple and invariable profession of islam. the intellectual image of the deity has never been degraded by any visible idol; the honor of the prophet has never transgressed the measure of human virtues; and his living precepts have restrained the gratitude of his disciples within the bounds of reason and religion." (history of the saracen empires, london, 1870, p. 54)





muhammad (pbuh) was nothing more or less than a human being. but he was a man with a noble mission, which was to unite humanity on the worship of one and only one god and to teach them the way to honest and upright living based on the commands of god. he always described himself as, 'a servant and messenger of god,' and so indeed every action of his proclaimed to be.





speaking on the aspect of equality before god in islam, the famous poetess of india, sarojini naidu says:


"it was the first religion that preached and practiced democracy; for, in the mosque, when the call for prayer is sounded and worshippers are gathered together, the democracy of islam is embodied five times a day when the peasant and king kneel side by side and proclaim: 'god alone is great'... i have been struck over and over again by this indivisible unity of islam that makes man instinctively a brother." (s. naidu, ideals of islam, vide speeches & writings, madras, 1918, p. 169)





in the words of prof. hurgronje:


"the league of nations founded by the prophet of islam put the principle of international unity and human brotherhood on such universal foundations as to show candle to other nations." he continues: "the fact is that no nation of the world can show a parallel to what islam has done towards the realization of the idea of the league of nations."





the world has not hesitated to raise to divinity, individuals whose lives and missions have been lost in legend. historically speaking, none of these legends achieved even a fraction of what muhammad (pbuh) accomplished. and all his striving was for the sole purpose of uniting mankind for the worship of one god on the codes of moral excellence. muhammad (pbuh) or his followers never at any time claimed that he was a son of god or the god-incarnate or a man with divinity - but he always was and is even today considered as only a messenger chosen by god.





michael h. hart in his recently published book on ratings of men who contributed towards the benefit and upliftment of mankind writes:


"my choice of muhammad to lead the list of the world's most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the religious and secular levels." (m.h. hart, the 100: a ranking of the most influential persons in history, new york, 1978, p. 33)





k. s. ramakrishna rao, an indian professor of philosophy in his booklet, "muhammad, the prophet of islam," calls him the "perfect model for human life." prof. ramakrishna rao explains his point by saying:


"the personality of muhammad, it is most difficult to get into the whole truth of it. only a glimpse of it i can catch. what a dramatic succession of picturesque scenes! there is muhammad, the prophet. there is muhammad, the warrior; muhammad, the businessman; muhammad, the statesman; muhammad, the orator; muhammad, the reformer; muhammad, the refuge of orphans; muhammad, the protector of slaves; muhammad, the emancipator of women; muhammad, the judge; muhammad, the saint. all in all these magnificent roles, in all these departments of human activities, he is alike a hero."





today after a lapse of fourteen centuries, the life and teachings of muhammad (pbuh) have survived without the slightest loss, alteration or interpolation. they offer the same undying hope for treating mankind's many ills, which they did when he was alive. this is not a claim of muhammad's (pbuh) followers but also the inescapable conclusion forced upon by a critical and unbiased history.





the least you could do as a thinking and concerned human being is to stop for a moment and ask yourself: could these statements sounding so extraordinary and revolutionary be really true? and supposing they really are true and you did not know this man muhammad (pbuh) or hear about him, isn't it time you responded to this tremendous challenge and put in some effort to know him?





it will cost you nothing but it may prove to be the beginning of a completely new era in your life.





we invite you to make a discovery of this wonderful man, muhammad (pbuh), the like of whom never walked on the face of this earth.





James A. Michener





muhammad, the inspired man who founded islam, was born about a.d. 570 into an arabian tribe that worshipped idols. orphaned at birth, he was always particularly solicitous of the poor and needy, the widow and the orphan, the slave and the downtrodden. at twenty, he was already a successful businessman, and soon became director of camel caravans for a wealthy widow. when he reached twenty-five, his employer, recognizing his merit, proposed marriage. even though she was fifteen years older, he married her, and as long as she lived, remained a devoted husband.


"like almost every major prophet before him, muhammad fought shy of serving as the transmitter of god's word, sensing his own inadequacy. but the angel commanded "read." so far as we know, muhammad was unable to read or write, but he began to dictate those inspired words which would soon revolutionize a large segment of the earth: "there is one god."





"in all things muhammad was profoundly practical. when his beloved son ibrahim died, an eclipse occurred, and rumours of god's personal condolence quickly arose. whereupon muhammad is said to have announced, "an eclipse is a phenomenon of nature. it is foolish to attribute such things to the death or birth of a human being." "at muhammad's own death an attempt was made to deify him, but the man who was to become his administrative successor killed the hysteria with one of the noblest speeches in religious history: "if there are any among you who worshipped muhammad, he is dead. but if it is god you worshipped, he lives forever."





Geoffrey Parrinder





no great religious leader has been so maligned as prophet mohammed. attacked in the past as a heretic, an impostor, or a sensualist, it is still possible to find him referred to as "the false prophet." a modern german writer accuses prophet mohammed of sensuality, surrounding himself with young women. this man was not married until he was twenty-five years of age, then he and his wife lived in happiness and fidelity for twenty-four years, until her death when he was forty-nine. only between the age of fifty and his death at sixty-two did prophet mohammed take other wives, only one of whom was a virgin, and most of them were taken for dynastic and political reasons. certainly the prophet's record was better than the head of the church of england, henry viii."





Prof. C. Snouck Hurgronje





the league of nations founded by the prophet of islam put the principle of international unity and human brotherhood on such universal foundations as to show candle to other nations." he continues: "the fact is that no nation of the world can show a parallel to what islam has done towards the realization of the idea of theleague of nations."





Diwan Chand Sharma





"muhammad was the soul of kindness, and his influence was felt and never forgotten by those around him."





Thomas Carlyle





"how one man single-handedly, could weld warring tribes and wandering bedouins into a most powerful and civilized nation in less than two decades."





John William Draper





"four years after the death of justinian, a.d. 569, was born at mecca, in arabia the man who, of all men exercised the greatest influence upon the human race . . . mohammed . . ."





John Austin





"in little more than a year he was actually the spiritual, nominal and temporal rule of medina, with his hands on the lever that was to shake the world."





In the Encyclopedia Britannica





"muhammad is the most successful of all prophets and religious personalities."





Michael H. Hart





"my choice of muhammad to lead the list of the world's most influential persons may surprise some readers and may be questioned by others, but he was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the religious and secular level."





Annie Besant





"it is impossible for anyone who studies the life and character of the great prophet of arabia, who knows how he taught and how he lived, to feel anything but reverence for that mighty prophet, one of the great messengers of the supreme. and although in what i put to you i shall say many things which may be familiar to many, yet i myself feel whenever i re-read them, a new way of admiration, a new sense of reverence for that mighty arabian teacher."





"but do you mean to tell me that the man who in the full flush of youthful vigour, a young man of four and twenty (24), married a woman much his senior, and remained faithful to her for six and twenty years (26), at fifty years of age when the passions are dying married for lust and sexual passion? not thus are men's lives to be judged. and you look at the women whom he married, you will find that by every one of them an alliance was made for his people, or something was gained for his followers, or the woman was in sore need of protection." 





George Bernard Shaw





if a man like muhamed were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he would succeed in solving its problems that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness. read the following writings of other western authors





Edward Gibbon and Simon Ocklay





"it is not the propagation but the permanency of his religion that deserves our wonder, the same pure and perfect impression which he engraved at mecca and medina is preserved, after the revolutions of twelve centuries by the indian, the african and the turkish proselytes of the koran. . . the mahometans have uniformly withstood the temptation of reducing the object of their faith an devotion to a level with the senses and imagination of man. 'i believe in one god and mahomet the apostle of god' is the simple and invariable profession of islam. the intellectual image of the deity has never been degraded by any visible idol; the honours of the prophet have never transgressed the measure of human virtue, and his living precepts have restrained the gratitude of his disciples within the bounds of reason and religion."





Bosworth Smith





"he was caesar and pope in one; but he was pope without pope's pretensions, caesar without the legions of caesar: without a standing army, without a bodyguard, without a palace, without a fixed revenue; if ever any man had the right to say that he ruled by the right divine, it was mohammed, for he had all the power without its instruments and without its supports."





W. Montgomery Watt





"his readiness to undergo persecutions for his beliefs, the high moral character of the men who believed in him and looked up to him as leader, and the greatness of his ultimate achievement - all argue his fundamental integrity. to suppose muhammad an impostor raises more problems than it solves. moreover, none of the great figures of history is so poorly appreciated in the west as muhammad."





Lamartine





"if greatness of purpose, smallness of means, and astounding results are the three criteria of human genius, who could dare to compare any great man in modern history with muhammad? the most famous men created arms, laws and empires only. they founded, if anything at all, no more than material powers which often crumbled away before their eyes. this man moved not only armies, legislations, empires, peoples and dynasties, but millions of men in one-third of the then inhabited world; and more than that, he moved the altars, the gods, the religions, the ideas, the beliefs and souls. . . his forbearance in victory, his ambition, which was entirely devoted to one idea and in no manner striving for an empire; his endless prayers, his mystic conversations with god, his death and his triumph after death; all these attest not to an imposture but to a firm conviction which gave him the power to restore a dogma. this dogma was twofold, the unity of god and the immateriality of god; the former telling what god is, the latter telling what god is not; the one overthrowing false gods with the sword, the other starting an idea with words.


"philosopher, orator, apostle, legislator, warrior, conqueror of ideas, restorer of rational dogmas, of a cult without images; the founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one spiritual empire, that is muhammad. as regards all standards by which human greatness may be measured, we may well ask, is there any man greater than he?"





Sarogini Naidu





sarogini naidu, the famous poetess of india says about islam: "it was the first religion that preached and practiced democracy; for in the mosque, when the call for prayer is sounded and worshippers are gathered together, the democracy of islam is embodied five times a day when the peasant and king kneel side by side and proclaim: 'god alone is great'… i have been struck over and over again by this indivisible unity of islam that makes man instinctively a brother."





Prof. Ramakrishna Rao





"the personality of muhammad, it is most difficult to get into the whole truth of it. only a glimpse of it i can catch. what a dramatic succession of picturesque scenes! there is muhammad, the prophet. there is muhammad, the warrior; muhammad, the businessman; muhammad, the statesman; muhammad, the orator; muhammad, the reformer; muhammad, the refuge of orphans; muhammad, the protector of slaves; muhammad, the emancipator of women; muhammad, the judge; muhammad, the saint. all in all these magnificent roles, in all these departments of human activities, he is alike a hero."





Mahatma Gandhi





speaking on the character of muhammad (pbuh), mahatma gandhi says in (young india),








"i wanted to know the best of one who holds today's undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind....i became more than convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for islam in those days in the scheme of life. it was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the prophet, the scrupulous regard for his pledges, his intense devotion to this friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in god and in his own mission. these and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. when i closed the 2nd volume (of the prophet's biography), i was sorry there was not more for me to read of the great life."








 



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