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A Glimpse into the Life of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (sa)


The Holy Prophet(sa) was ever concerned to ameliorate the condition of the poorer sections of the community and to raise their status in society. On one occasion while he was sitting with his companions(ra), a rich man happened to pass by. The Prophet(sa) inquired of one of his companions(ra) what he thought of him. He replied ‘He is a well-to-do and well-connected man. If he were to ask for the hand of a girl in marriage the request would be favourably considered and if he were to intercede on behalf of anybody the intercession would be accepted.’ Shortly after, another man passed by who appeared to be poor and of no substance. The Prophet(sa) inquired of the same companion(ra) what he thought of him. He replied: ‘O Messenger of Allah(sa)! He is a poor man. If he were to request the hand of a girl in marriage the request would not be favourably received and if he were to intercede on behalf of any person the intercession would be rejected and if he were to seek to engage anybody in conversation no attention would be paid to him.’ On hearing this the Prophet(sa) observed: ‘The worth of this poor man is much greater than the value of a quantity of gold sufficient to fill the whole universe.’ (Bukhari, Kitabur Riqaq).

A poor Muslim woman used to clean out the Holy Prophet’s(sa) mosque in Madinah. The Prophet(sa) did not see her in the mosque for some days and made inquiries concerning her. He was told that she had died. He said: ‘Why was I not informed when she died? I would have wished to join her funeral prayers,’ and added, ‘perchance you did not consider her worthy of consideration as she was poor. This was not right. Direct me to her grave.’ He then proceeded to her grave and prayed for her (Bukhari, Kitabus Salat). He used to say that there were people with tangled hair whose bodies were covered with dust and who were not welcomed by those who were well-to-do but who were so highly valued by God that if, trusting in God’s beneficence, they swore in His name that a certain matter would take a certain turn He would support them. (Muslim, Kitabul Birr Was Sila). On one occasion some companions(ra) of the Prophet(sa) who were freed slaves were sitting together when Abu Sufyan(ra) (who was a chieftain among the Quraish and had fought the Muslims up to the surrender of Makkah and had accepted Islam only on that occasion) happened to pass by. These companions(ra), addressing him, recalled the victory that God had bestowed upon Islam. Abu Bakr(ra) also heard this and did not approve of a chieftain of the Quraish being reminded of their humiliation and he reprimanded the group of companions(ra). He then went to the Holy Prophet(sa) and related the incident to him. The Prophet(sa) said: ‘O Abu Bakr(ra)! I fear you may have hurt the feelings of these servants of God. If that should be so, God would be offended with you.’ Abu Bakr(ra) at once returned to those people and inquired: ‘Brothers of mine! Did you feel hurt over what I said?’ To which they replied: ‘We felt no offence at what you said. May God forgive you!’ (Muslim, Kitabul Fada’il ). [1]


[1] Hazrat Mirza Bashirruddin Mahmud Ahmad(ra), Life of Muhammad(sa) (Tilford, Surrey: Islam International Publications, 2013), 221-223.