Muhammad (PBUH) and the Message of Islam

by Dr Salah Zaimeche, BMHC

Muhammad was born in the year 570 CE, in Makkah. His father, Abdullah, died a few months before he was born. As soon as she delivered her child, Mohammed’s mother, Amina, sent him to his paternal grandfather, `Abd al Muttalib, who was then at the Ka’bah, announcing to him the birth of a grandson. The old man was overjoyed at the news and must have remembered on this occasion his loved son Abdullah. 1 He rushed to his daughter-in-law, took her infant son in his hands, went into the Ka’bah and there called him “Muhammad,” a name that was not familiar among the Arabs then, but that was known. He then returned the baby to his mother and waited by her side for the arrival of wet nurses from the tribe of Banu Sa’d in order to arrange for one of them to take care of the new born, as was the practice of Makkan nobility. 2 On the seventh day after Muhammad’s birth, `Abd al Muttalib gave a banquet in honour of his grandson to which he invited Quraish tribesmen and peers. When they asked why he had chosen to name the child Muhammad, thus changing the practice of using the ancestors’ names, `Abd al Muttalib answered: ‘I did so with the wish that my grandson would be praised by God in heaven and on earth by men.’ 3

When Muhammad was six years old his mother, Amina, died. After her death, he was looked after by Abd-al Muttalib, who took great care of the child. When Abd Al-Muttalib realised that his own death would not be long in coming, he called on his son, Abu Talib, and asked him to look after Muhammad after his death. 4 Abd Al-Muttalib chose to trust Muhammad to Abu Talib as he thought him to be the kindest of his sons although Abu Talib had many children of his own and was a man of little means, unlike other uncles of Muhammad: Al-Abbas, Abu Lahab… 5 On Abd Al-Muttalib’s death, Abu Talib took care of him, treating him as one of his own children. Muhammad continued to work for his uncle. It was then, when he was still a youth, he had become so well known for his honesty, he won the title of Al-Ameen (The Trustworthy) from the Makkans. 6 Decades later, after the revelation of Islam and when his enemies rose against him, they still attested to his excellent manners. Abu Jahl, who was one of the harshest enemies of Islam, said: ‘O Muhammad! I do not say that you are a liar! I only deny what you brought and what you call people to.’ Muhammad was said to have great intelligence and outstanding ability. He spoke little, listened much, and inclined only to serious conversation though he did not refuse to share a joke. 7 Sometimes he would laugh until one could see his molars, but his anger was never obvious except by perspiration between his eyebrows. 8 Once he had resolved to take a course of action, he was persevering and no longer hesitated.

‘Whoever came into contact with him,’ says Haykal, ‘was deeply impressed by all these qualities; whoever had anything to do with him, loved him. All these qualities helped strengthen the bond of loyalty, truthfulness, and love, which united him to Khadijah’. 9

Khadijah was one of the richer merchants of Makkah. She was daughter of Khuwaylid, of the clan of Asad. It had been her custom to hire men to trade on her behalf. Now Muhammad had come to be known throughout Makkah for his honesty, initially owing to the reports of those who had entrusted their merchandise to him on various occasions, Khadijah who heard much good of him from family sources, one day sent word to him, asking him to take some of her merchandise to Syria, which he accepted. 10 Afterwards so impressed was she by the manner he conducted his project she offered marriage to him. Having sent word to him to come to her, she said to him:

‘Son of mine uncle, I love thee for thy kinship with me, and for that thou art ever in the centre, not being a partisan amongst the people for this or for that; and I love thee for thy trustworthiness and for the beauty of thy character and the truth of thy speech.’ 11

Then she offered herself in marriage to him (via an intermediary). They agreed that he should speak to his uncles and she would speak to her uncle ‘Amr, the son of Asad, for Khuwaylid, her father, had died. 12 It was Mohammed’s uncle, Hamzah, despite his relative youth, who was delegated to represent them on this occasion, and it was agreed between them that Muhammad should give her twenty she-camels as dowry. 13 At the time Muhammad was 25, she was around forty. They were married for over twenty five years until her death.

Mohammed (pbuh) calligraphy

Mohammed (pbuh) calligraphy

The Call to Islam

It was in the fortieth year of his life, that while passing the month of Ramadhan on Mount Hira, as he lay wrapped in his mantle during the silent watches of the night, that he heard a voice. Muhammad raised his eyes and saw the angel in the likeness of a man.

‘Read!’ said the angel.

‘I know not how to read,’ said Muhammad.

‘Read in the name of your Lord, the Creator of all things, Who made man from a clot! Read, and thy Lord is the Most Bounteous, Who taught man the use of the pen, And Who taught man that which he knew not.’ (96:1-5)

Muhammad read these words after the angel. The experience was overwhelming, though. So he fled from the cave, and when he was halfway down the slope of the mountain he heard a voice above him saying:

‘Muhammad! You are the Apostle of God the Most High, and I, I am Gabriel.’

Muhammad stood in his place looking up at him, unable to move. He tried to turn his face away from him and to look up at the sky, but wherever he looked he saw the angel there, astride the horizon, whether it was to the north, to the south, to the east or to the west. Finally the Angel turned away, and the Prophet descended the slope and went to his house. 14

When he returned to his wife Khadijah, he told her his experience. 15 Khadijah, who of all people was the closest him, became his first convert. The next were Zeid (Zeyd), his Arab slave, to whom he had granted freedom, and his cousin, Ali, the son of Abu Talib. A merchant from Makkah, called Abu Bakr, a quiet, pleasant man, became his fourth disciple. 16 Abu Bakr Ibn Abu Quhafah Al-Taymi was in fact the first outsider to whom Muhammad confided the vision he had seen and the revelations he had heard. 17 He was a very close friend to Muhammad. He knew Muhammad to be worthy of this trust, and whose truthfulness was, as far as Abu Bakr was concerned, beyond doubt. 18 By profession he was a trader, loved and respected by his people for his knowledge, his honesty and his entertaining conversation. 19 He soon began to call to Islam those of his people whom he trusted, and a number of them were converted. `Uthman ibn `Affan, `Abd al Rahman ibn `Awf, Talhah ibn `Ubayd Allah, Sa’ad Ibn Abi Waqqas, and Al Zubayr Ibn al ‘Awwam were the first to respond favourably to the call. Thereafter Abu `Ubaydah ibn Al Jarrah was converted as well as a number of other Makkans. 20 Whenever a man converted to Islam, he would seek the Prophet and declare his Islam to him and receive from him his instruction. 21

Whilst converts came from various quarters, Muhammad’s relatives were divided. Hamzah would eventually adopt Islam, and distinguish himself in the early battles of Islam. Al-Abbas did convert but only much later, whilst Abu Lahab, most particularly, remained extremely hostile, and even Abu Talib refused to adopt Islam even in the last moments of his life, despite all of Muhammad’s entreaties, although he remained a great source of support for his nephew. As for Muhammad’s aunts, Safiyyah had no hesitation in following him as her son Zubayr had done, but her five sisters could not bring themselves to make any decision. On the other hand, his aunt by marriage, Umm Al-Fadl, the wife of the hesitant `Abbas, was the first woman to enter Islam after Khadijah; and she was soon able to bring three of her sisters to the Prophet – Maymunah, her full sister, and two half-sisters, Salma and Asma. 22

After the first Messages had come there was a period of silence, then there came a further reassurance, and with it the first command directly related to Muhammad’s mission:

‘By the forenoon, and by the night as it spreads its wings over the world in peace, your Lord has not forsaken you; nor is He displeased with you. Surely, the end shall be better for you than the beginning.
Your Lord will soon give you of His bounty and you will be well pleased. Did He not find you an orphan and give you shelter? Did He not find you erring and guide you to the truth? Did He not find you in want and provide for you? Do not, therefore, oppress the orphan nor turn away whosoever seeks your help. And the bounty of your Lord, always proclaim.’ (93:1-11)

The Revelations which now increased were immediately transmitted by the Prophet to those who were with him, then passed from mouth to mouth, memorised and recited a long and rapidly increasing litany which told of the ephemeral nature of all earthly things, of death and of the certainty of the Resurrection and the Last Judgment, followed by Hell or Paradise. 23 But above all it told of the Glory of God, of His Indivisible Oneness, His Truth, Wisdom, Goodness, Mercy, Bounty and Power; and by extension it continually referred to His Signs, the marvels of nature, and to their harmonious working together which testified so eloquently to the Oneness of their Sole Originator. Harmony is the imprint of Oneness upon multiplicity, and the Qur’an draws attention to that harmony as a theme for a person’s meditation. 24

Fearful of arousing the enmity and antagonism of the Quraish for their departure from idol worship, the new Muslims concealed their conversion. They would go to the outskirts of Makkah in order to hold their prayers. For three years, while Islam continued to spread among the Makkans, the Muslims continued to hide. In the meantime, the Qur’an was continually being revealed to Muhammad and this fortified the Muslims in their faith and confirmed them in it. 25

To call to Islam became public and the veil of secrecy was lifted. However, while there was a trickle of converts, opposition to Muhammad by his own tribe, the Quraish, gradually grew very strong. 26 The Quraish as a whole were disposed to tolerate Islam, even after the Prophet had openly proclaimed it, until they saw that it was directed against their gods, their principles and their inveterate practices. 27 They were particularly angered by the Prophet’s insistence on the destruction and removal of idols. 28 The Quraish, Glubb notes, were proud of their idol temple. Men from all over Arabia came to it as pilgrims and bought many commodities, which they imported. If as the Prophet insisted, the idols were destroyed, both the prestige and the commerce of Makkah would suffer. 29 The Quraish, Durant says, were even more disturbed by Muhammad’s welcome to slaves than by the new religion. 30 To the powerful and prosperous oligarchy of Makkah the monotheistic message of Islam with its condemnation of the socioeconomic inequities of life constituted a direct challenge not only to traditional polytheistic religion but also to the power and prestige of the establishment, threatening their economic, social, and political interests. 31 Abu Lahab, Muhammad’s uncle, and Abu Sufyan, noblemen of Quraish, and leaders of its commerce and entertainment, began to feel the threat, which the call to Islam presented. They therefore decided to begin by ridiculing him and belying his prophethood. Their first act was to tempt their poet friends to attack Muhammad in their poetry. 32 It was then that Abu Sufyan Ibn Al Harith, `Amr Ibn Al `As, and `Abdullah Ibn Al Zib’ari launched their violent attacks in verse. A number of Muslim poets undertook to answer these attacks in kind, despite the fact that Muhammad hardly needed their efforts. 33

Some of the leading men of the Quraish went in a body to Abu Talib, to insist that he should restrain his nephew’s activities. He put them off with a conciliatory answer; but when they saw that he had done nothing they came to him again and said:

‘O Abu Talib, thine is a high and honourable position amongst us, and we have asked thee to hold in check thy brother’s son, but thou hast not done so. By God, we will not suffer our fathers to be insulted, our ways scoffed at, and our gods reviled. Either make him desist, or we will fight you both.’ 34

Then they left him, and in great distress he sent for his nephew, and having told him what they had threatened, he said:

‘O son of my brother, spare me and spare yourself. Lay not upon me a burden greater than I can bear.’

But the Prophet answered him saying:

‘I swear by God, if they put the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left on condition that I abandon this course before He hath made it victorious, or I have perished therein, I would not abandon it.’ 35

Then, with tears in his eyes, he rose to his feet and turned to go, but his uncle called him back:

‘Son of my brother,’ he said, ‘go and say what you will, for by God I will never forsake you on any account.’ 36

Now that the Prophet had refused their demands, the Quraish thought of other methods. To them the situation was exceedingly grave: the time of the Pilgrimage would soon be upon them and Arabs would come to Makkah from all over Arabia. Pilgrims would hear their gods insulted by Muhammad and his followers, and they would be urged to forsake the religion of their forefathers and to adopt a new religion. 37 The Quraish consulted Walid ibn Mughirah, probably the most influential man of the tribe at that time, who suggested that they should unanimously hold that Muhammad was a dangerous sorcerer, to be avoided at all costs. Having readily agreed to follow his advice, they decided that outside the town all the roads by which Makkah was approached must be manned, and that visitors must be warned in advance to be on their guard against Muhammad, for they knew from their own experience how winning he could be. ‘Had he not been, before he began preaching, one of the best loved men in Mecca? Nor had his tongue lost any of its eloquence, nor his presence anything of its compelling majesty.’ 38

A man of the Bani Ghifar named Abu Dharr – his tribe lived to the north-west of Makkah, not far from the Red Sea – had already heard of the Prophet and of the opposition to him. Like most of his tribesmen, Abu Dharr was a highwayman; but unlike them he was a firm believer in the Oneness of God, and he refused to pay any respect to idols. Abu Dharr immediately set off for Makkah, and without difficulty he found his way to the Prophet’s house. The Prophet was lying asleep on a bench in the courtyard, with his face covered by a fold of his cloak. Abu Dharr woke him and wished him good morning. ‘On thee be Peace!’ said the Prophet. ‘Declaim to me your utterances,’ said the Bedouin. ‘I am no poet,’ said the Prophet, ‘but what I utter is the Qur’an, and it is not I who speak but God who speaks.’

‘Recite for me,’ said Abu Dharr, and he recited to him a surah, whereupon Abu Dharr said: “I testify that there is no god but God, and that Muhammad is the messenger of God.’ ‘Who are your people?’ said the Prophet, and at the man’s answer he looked him up and down in amazement and said: “Verily God guides whom He wills.’ 39

Another encounter with the Prophet had the result of bringing Islam to the Bani Daws, who were also, like Ghifar, an outlying western tribe. Tufayl, a man of Daws, told afterwards how he had been warned on his arrival in Makkah against speaking to ‘the sorcerer Muhammad’ or even listening to him lest he should find himself separated from his people. Tufayl was a poet and a man of considerable standing in his tribe. The Quraish were therefore especially insistent in their warning, and they made him so afraid of being bewitched that before going into the Mosque he stuffed his ears with cotton wool. The Prophet was there. His recitation of Qur’anic verses was not very loud, but some of it nonetheless penetrated Tufayl’s ears. ‘God would not have it’, he said, ‘but that He should make me hear something of what was recited, and I heard beautiful words. So I said to myself: I am a man of insight, a poet, and not ignorant of the difference between the fair and the foul. Why then should I not hear what this man is saying? If it be fair I will accept it, and if foul, reject it. I stayed until the Prophet went away, whereupon I followed him and when he entered his house I entered it upon his heels and said: ‘O Muhammad thy people told me this and that and they so frightened me about your state that I stuffed my ears lest I should hear your speech. But God would not have it but that He should make me hear you. So tell me the truth of what you are.’

The Prophet explained Islam to him and recited the Qur’an, and Tufayl made his profession of faith. Then he returned to his people, determined to convert them. His father and his wife followed him into Islam, but the rest of Daws held back, and he returned to Makkah in great disappointment and anger, demanding that the Prophet should put a curse on them. But instead the Prophet prayed for their guidance and said to Tufayl: ‘Return to your people, call them to Islam, and deal gently with them.” 40 These instructions he faithfully followed, and as the years passed more and more families of Daws were converted.

Tufayl Ibn `Amr al Dawsi is only one of many examples. The idol worshippers were not the only ones responding favourably to the message of Muhammad. While Muhammad was still in Makkah, twenty Christian men arrived, sent by their own people on a fact-finding mission concerning the new faith. 41 They sat with Muhammad and asked him all kinds of questions and listened to him. They, too, were converted on the spot, believed in Muhammad and in the revelation. This conversion aroused great anger and resentment among the Quraish who addressed the new converts:

‘Wretched fact-finding mission that you are! Your fellow religionists sent you here in order to investigate the man and bring them the factual news concerning him. But you have hardly sat down with him before you apostatized from your religion and believed him in everything he said.’ 42

In vain did the Quraish try to dissuade the Christian delegation from following Muhammad and converting to his faith. On the contrary, the Quraish’s attack against their sincerity had strengthened their faith in God and added to their monotheistic convictions since, before they heard Muhammad, they were already Christian and hence submissive to God. 43

The number of followers of Islam increased, and whilst the conversion of ordinary people or slaves did not constitute in the eyes of the Makkan oligarchy a critical issue, that of men of prestige did, providing the Muslim ranks with the strength and presence where that was needed. Already the early conversion of Uthman Ibn Affan, who belonged to one of the richest and leading families of Makkah, had seriously disturbed the opponents of Muhammad, and had conversely strongly enhanced the stature of the Muslim ranks. The conversion of Abu Bakr, not just one of the influential men of the city but also one of its most respected, most pleasant and affable figures, gave the Muslim ranks great prestige and material strength. Now, the conversion of Hamzah, the Prophet’s uncle, precisely at a time when Islam needed men of his physical stature, proved a turning point. Hamzah was respected for his courage, physique, and fighting prowess. He was fully aware of the qualities of his nephew, who he knew not as a nephew, but as brother and a friend, as they were of the same generation. 44 He shared the companionship, friendship, and even attracted the high respect of those who railed and lambasted Muhammad, but he could not share their view of his nephew, for he was the one who knew him best, both having grown up together, in the same household, and attained full strength together. 45 Returning from a hunting party, one day, he promptly declared his conversion to Islam by beating Abu Jahl who had just mistreated Muhammad, Hamzah exclaimed:

‘You dare to insult Muhammad while I follow his religion and say what he says? Come and retaliate upon me. Hit me if you can.’ 46

In a moment the men of Quraish surrounding Abu Jahl forgot about the insult to their leader, more astounded as they were by the news that Hamzah had converted to Islam. 47 The Quraish became much alarmed at this conversion, and adopted further measures. They agreed to follow a suggestion, which was now made in the assembly by one of the leading men of ‘Abdu Shams, ‘Utbah Ibn Rabi’ah: ‘Why should I not go to Muhammad,’ he said, ‘and make certain offers to him, some of which he might accept? And what he accepts, that will we give him, on condition that he leaves us in peace.’ 48 Word now came that the Prophet was sitting alone beside the Ka’bah, so ‘Utbah left the assembly forthwith and went to the Mosque. 49

‘Son of my brother,’ he said to the Prophet, ‘you are as you know a noble of the tribe and your lineage assures you of a place of honour. And now you have brought to your people a matter of grave concern, whereby you have rifted their community, declared their way of life to be foolish, spoken shamefully of their gods and their religion, and called their forefathers infidels. So hear what I propose, and see if any of it be acceptable to you. If it is wealth you seek, we will put together a fortune for you from our various properties that you may be the richest man amongst us. If it is honour you seek, we will make you our overlord and take no decision without your consent; and if you would have kingship, we will make you our king; and if you yourself cannot rid yourself of this sprite that appears to you, we will find you a physician and spend our wealth until your cure be complete.’

When he had finished speaking, the Prophet said to him: ‘Now hear thou me, O Father of Walid.’ ‘I will,” said ‘Utbah, whereupon the Prophet recited to him part of a Revelation which he had recently received. 50

‘Utbah was prepared to make at least a semblance of heeding, out of policy towards a man he hoped to win, but after a few sentences all such thoughts had changed to wonderment at the words themselves. He sat there with his hands behind his back, leaning upon them as he listened, amazed at the beauty of the language that flowed into his ears. The signs that were recited spoke of the Revelation itself, and of the creation of the earth and the firmament. Then it told of the Prophets and of the peoples of old who, having resisted them, had been destroyed and doomed to Hell. Then came a passage which spoke of the believers promising them the protection of the Angels in this life and the satisfaction of every desire in the Hereafter, The Prophet ended his recitation with the words:

‘And of His signs are the night and the day and the sun and the moon. Bow not down in adoration unto the sun nor unto the moon, but bow down in adoration unto God their Creator, if Him indeed ye worship,’(41:37)

— whereupon he placed his forehead on the ground in prostration.
Then he said: ‘You have heard what you have heard, O Abul-Walid, and all is now between you and that.’ 51

When ‘Utbah returned to his companions they were so struck by the change of expression on his face that they exclaimed: ‘What hath befallen thee, O Abul-Walid?’ He answered them saying:

‘I have heard an utterance the like of which I have never yet heard. It is not poetry, by God, neither is it sorcery nor soothsaying. Men of Quraish, hearken unto me, and do as I say. Come not between this man and what he is about, but let him be, for by God the words that I have heard from him will be received as great tidings. If the Arabs strike him down you will be rid of him at the hands of others, and if he overcome the Arabs, then his sovereignty will be your sovereignty and his might will be your might, and ye will be the most fortunate of men.’

But they mocked at him saying: ‘He has bewitched you with his tongue.’ ‘I have given you my opinion,’ he answered, ‘so do what you think is best.’ 52

They soon repaired to the Prophet themselves, and made again the same offer. When they had finished he said to them:

‘I am not possessed, neither seek I honour amongst you, nor kingship over you. But God has sent me to you as a messenger and revealed to me a book and commanded me that I should be for you a teller of good tidings and a warner. Even so have I conveyed to you the message of my Lord, and I have given you good counsel. If you accept from me what I have brought you, that is your good fortune in this world and the next; but if you reject what I have brought, then will I patiently await God’s judgment between us.’ 53

Not judging his answer the right one, they asked him to perform some miracles with which to prove his prophethood, challenging him to do as much as Moses or Jesus had done. They asked, ‘Why don’t you change Mount Safa and Mount Marwah into gold? Why don’t you cause the book of which you speak so much to fall down from heaven already written? Why don’t you cause Gabriel to appear to all of us and speak to us as he spoke to you? Why don’t you resurrect the dead and remove these mountains which bound and enclose the city of Makkah? Why don’t you cause a water fountain to spring whose water is sweeter than that of Zamzam, knowing how badly your town needs the additional water supply?’ 54 God commanded Muhammad,

“Say: I have no power whatever to bring advantage or avoid disadvantage. What God wills, that will happen. If it were given me to tell the future I would have used such knowledge to my own advantage. But I am only a man sent to warn you, and a messenger to convey a divine message that you may believe.” (7:188)

In the end, disappointed, they said:

‘We have now justified ourselves before you, Muhammad; and we swear by God that we will not leave you in peace nor desist from our present treatment of you until we destroy you or until you destroy us.’ 55

Consequently the Quraish inflicted even more abuse on the Prophet from jeering at him to throwing refuse and even animal remains on him as he lay prostrated in prayers. 56 They besieged him and his most faithful followers, intercepted their water, and expressed their animosity by injuries and insults. 57 In one instance, the two men who were engaged to marry Mohammed’s two daughters (Kulthum and Ruqqayah) publicly divorced their brides. This deliberate and damaging social insult was neatly reversed when Uthman, one of the favourites of Makkan society, took the rejected Ruqayyah’s hand in marriage. 58 Fear of blood feud still deterred the Quraish from using violence on Muhammad or his freemen followers, but they inflicted terrible pains on converted slaves. 59 Among the most relentless of the persecutors was Abu Jahl. If a convert had a powerful family to defend him, Abu Jahl would merely insult him and promise to ruin his reputation and make him a laughing-stock. If he was a merchant he would threaten to stop his trade by organising a general boycott of his goods so that he would be ruined. If he was weak and unprotected and of his own clan, he would have him tortured; and he had powerful allies in many other clans whom he could persuade to do the same with their own weak and unprotected converts. 60 The chief of Jumah, Umayyah, had an African slave named Bilal who was a firm believer. Umayyah would take him out at noon, under the scorching desert heat, into an open space, and would have him pinned to the ground with a large rock on his chest, swearing that he should stay like that until he died, or until he renounced Muhammad and worshipped Al-Lat and Al-‘Uzzah. While he endured this Bilal would say ‘One, One’. 61

It was through Abu Bakr that Bilal had entered Islam; and, when he saw how they were torturing him, he said to Umayyah: ‘Have you no fear of God, to treat this poor man thus?’ ‘It is you who has corrupted him,’ retorted Umayyah, “so save him from what you are seeing.’ ‘I will,’ said Abu Bakr. ‘I have a black youth who is tougher and sturdier than he, a man of your religion. Him will I give you for Bilal.’ Umayyah agreed, and Abu Bakr took Bilal and set him free. 62

Abu Bakr who had by years of commerce saved 40,000 pieces of silver, now used 35,000 to buy the freedom of as many converted slaves as he could. 63 It was also conveyed that recantation under duress was forgivable. 64 However, some such as Yasir and Sumayyah and their son ‘Ammar refused to renounce Islam, and Sumayyah died under the sufferings they inflicted on her. 65 But some of the victims of Makhzum and of other clans could not endure what they were made to suffer, and their persecutors reduced them to a state when they could agree to anything.

When the Prophet saw that although he escaped persecution himself many of his followers did not, he said to them:

‘You may go to Abyssinia, for the king there is fair and will not cause injustice to anyone and it is a friendly country (so you may stay there) until Allah will relieve you from your affliction.’ 66

Thereupon his companions, eighty-three adults in total, went to Abyssinia. 67 This was the first migration of Islam, which took place in the year 615 (CE). Amongst those who emigrated were Uthman Ibn Affan with his wife, Ruqayyah, the daughter of the Prophet. Uthman’s emigration was not out of necessity. His family had given up trying to make him recant, but the Prophet nonetheless allowed him to go and to take with him Ruqayyah. Their presence was a source of strength to the community of exiles. 68

The emigrants were well received in Abyssinia, and were allowed complete freedom of worship. The leaders of the Quraish, however, were nonetheless determined that they should not be left in peace to establish there, beyond their control. So they speedily thought out a plan, and made ready a quantity of presents, leatherworks most particularly, of a kind that the Abyssinians were known to value most, enough to make a rich bribe for every one of the Negus’s generals. There were also rich gifts for the Negus himself. Then they carefully chose two men, one of whom was ‘Amr Ibn Al-‘As of the clan of Sahm. The Quraish told them exactly what to do: They were to approach each of the generals separately, give him his present, and say:
‘Some foolish young men and women of our people have taken refuge in this kingdom. They have left their own religion, not for yours, but for one they have invented, one that is unknown to us and to yourselves. The nobles of their people have sent us to your king on their account, that he may send them home. So when we speak to him about them, counsel him to deliver them into our hands and have no words with them; for their people see best how it is with them.’ 69

The generals all agreed, and the two men of the Quraish took their presents to the Negus, asking that the emigrants should be given into their hands and explaining the reason as they had done to the generals, and finally adding:

‘The nobles of their people, who are their fathers, their uncles and their kinsmen, beg thee to restore them unto them.’ 70

The generals were present at the audience, and now with one voice they urged the Negus to comply with their request and give up the refugees, inasmuch as kinsmen are the best judges of the affairs of their kinsmen. But the Negus was displeased and said:

‘Nay, by God, they shall not be betrayed — a people that have sought my protection and made my country their abode and chosen me above all others! Give them up I will not, until I have summoned them and questioned them concerning what these men say of them. If it be as they have said, then will I deliver them unto them, that they may restore them to their own people. But if not, then will I be their good protector so long as they seek my protection.’ 71

Then he sent for the companions of the Prophet, and at the same time he assembled his bishops, who brought with them their sacred books and spread them open round about the throne. When they were all assembled, the Negus first asked them about their religion. Then the Negus asked if they had with them any Revelation that their Prophet had brought them from God and, when Ja’far answered that they had, he said: “Then recite it to me,” whereupon Ja’far recited a passage from the Surah of Mary, which had been revealed shortly before their departure:

‘And make mention of Mary in the Book, when she withdrew from her people unto a place towards the east, and secluded herself from them; and We sent unto her Our Spirit, and it appeared unto her in the likeness of a perfect man. She said: I take refuge from thee in the Infinitely Good, if any piety thou hast He said: I am none other than a messenger from thy Lord, that I may bestow on thee a son most pure. She said: How can there be for me a son, when no man hath touched me, nor am I unchaste? He said: Even so shall it be; thy Lord saith: It is easy for Me. That We may make him a sign for mankind and a mercy from Us; and it is a thing ordained.’ (19, 16-21.)

The Negus wept, and his bishops wept also, when they heard him recite, and when it was translated they wept again, and the Negus said: ‘This has truly come from the same source as that which Jesus brought.” Then he turned to the two envoys of Quraish and said: “You may go, for by God I will not deliver them unto you; they shall not be betrayed.’ 72

But when they had withdrawn from the royal presence, ‘Amr said to his companion: ‘Tomorrow I will tell him a thing that shall tear up this green growing prosperity of theirs by the roots.’ So the next morning he went to the Negus and said: ‘O King, they tell an enormous lie about Jesus the son of Mary. Call on them to say what they say of him.’ 73 So the Negus sent for them in order to tell him what Islam said of Jesus. They consulted with each other on what to say but they all knew that they had no choice but to say what God had said. So when they entered the royal presence, and they were asked Ja’far answered:

‘We say of him what our Prophet brought to us, that he is the slave of God and His Messenger and His Spirit and His Word which He cast unto Mary the blessed virgin.’ 74

The Negus took up a piece of wood and said:
‘Jesus the son of Mary exceeds not what you have said by the length of this stick.’ And when the generals round him snorted, he added: ‘For all your snorting.’ Then he turned to Ja’far and his companions and said: ‘Go your ways, for you are safe in my land. Not for mountains of gold would I harm a single man of you’; and, with a movement of his hand towards the envoys of Quraish, he said to his attendant: ‘Return to these two men their gifts, for I have no use for them.’ So ‘Amr and the other man went back ignominiously to Makkah. 75

That same year, an event of considerable importance took place: the conversion of Umar (Omar) Ibn Al-Khattab to Islam. Initially Omar Ibn Al-Khattab, future caliph (634-644), was one of the most uncompromising of the enemies of Islam, who raged over the Prophet’s ‘blasphemies’ against the gods of Quraish. 76 It is said that one day he was on his way with his sword, with the intention of breaking up a Muslim meeting that was attended by some forty people. 77 Striding up the line, he met a man of his own clan who asked him where he was going. ‘I am going to break up this meeting and to kill Muhammad,’ Omar replied. 78 The man who met him dissuaded him, reminding him that if he slew the Prophet he would have to reckon with the vengeance of a powerful clan: ‘Do you think that the Banu ‘Abd Munâf would let you walk on the earth if you had slain Muhammad?’ for tribal pride survived religious difference. ‘Is it not better for you to return to the folk of your own house and keep them straight?’

Omar asked: ‘Which of the folk of my house?’

‘Your brother-in-law and cousin, Sa’id Ibn Zeyd, and your sister, Fatimah daughter of Al-Khattab, for, by Allah, they have become Muslims and followers of Muhammad in his religion, so look you to them.’

Omar changed his course, and returned, enraged, to the house of his sister and brother-in-law. When they heard the noise of Omar’s coming, Khabâb, a slave who was reading from the Qur’an, hid in a closet that they had in the house and Fatimah took the leaf and hid it under her thigh. But Omar had heard the sound of Khabâb’s reading as he drew near the house, and when he entered he said: ‘What was that mumbling which I heard?’

Fatimah and her husband said: “You heard nothing.’

Omar said: ‘Yea, by Allah! And I have already been informed that you have become followers of Mohammed in his religion.’ Omar seized his brother-in-law by his clothes about to hit him. His sister sprang to keep him off her husband and he struck and wounded her. And when he had done that, his sister and his brother-in-law said to him: ‘Yes, we are Muslims and we believe in Allah and His messenger, so do what you will!’

But when Omar saw the blood on his sister he was sorry for what he had done, and he said to her: ‘Give me that leaf from which I heard you reading just now, that I may see what this is that Muhammad has brought.’ And Omar was a scribe.
When he said that, his sister said: ‘We fear to trust thee with it.’

He said: ‘Fear not!’ and swore by his gods that he would return it to her when he had read it.

And when he said that, she hoped for his conversion to Islam, but said: ‘O my brother, you are unclean on account of your idolatry and none may touch it save the purified.’

Omar went out and washed himself, and she gave him the leaf on which Ta Ha was written and he read it. The chapter in question Omar read opened with God addressing the Prophet:

‘We haven’t revealed to you the Qur’an that you may fail; It is a reminder to him who fears, A revelation which has come down from the Creator of the Earth and of the high heavens.’ (20: 2-3)

And when he had read it he said: ‘How excellent are these words!’ and praised it highly. When he heard that Khabâb came out to him and said:

‘O Omar, I hope that Allah has brought you in answer to the prayer of the Prophet, for only yesterday I heard him saying: O Allah! Strengthen Islam with Abu’l-Hukm Ibn Hishâm or Omar Ibn Al-Khattab; and Allah is Allah, O Omar!’ 79

So Omar seized his sword once more and hurried back to the house where the meeting was being held by the Muslims. When he knocked at the door, one of the Muslims peeped through a crank and saw him. Turning back to Muhammad, he said in alarm, ‘it is Omar with his sword on.’ Hamzah who was inside said ‘let him in, if he wants trouble we will deal with him.’

The Prophet went to meet him at the door, and seizing his cloak, said: ‘When will you cease your persecutions oh Omar?’

But Omar replied: ‘Oh Apostle of God I have come to you to believe in God and his Apostle.’ 80

The conversion of Omar took place in the fifth year of the Prophet’s mission soon after the departure of the emigrants to Abyssinia (615). At that time Surah Ta Ha was already written down and in circulation.

The conversion of Omar to Islam severely affected the power of the Quraish as he brought with him to the faith the same tribal loyalties with which he had fought Islam earlier. He did not either hide himself or conceal his Islam, but instead proclaimed it to all the people and even fought them for not joining him. He did not at all approve of the Muslims’ hiding themselves or holding prayers in the outskirts of Makkah far beyond Quraish’s reach. 81 Omar could not accept that Quraish should worship their gods openly at the Ka’bah, while the believers worshipped God in secret. 82 He continued to struggle against Quraish until he could pray near the Ka’bah where his fellow Muslims joined him. Sometimes he and Hamzah would go with a large body of the faithful to the sanctuary, and on such occasions the leaders of Quraish kept away. 83 Henceforth, the Quraish became certain that whatever they did to Muhammad or his companions this would not stop men from entering the religion of God because of the protection given by Omar, Hamzah, the Negus of Abyssinia, or other men capable of protecting them. 84 To let this happen would equate a loss of dignity for them, yet if they resisted they knew that Omar would stop at nothing. 85 The Quraish thus adopted a new strategy, and agreed among themselves to a written pact in which they decided to boycott Banu Hashim and Banu `Abd al Muttalib completely, prevent any intermarriage with them, and ban all commercial transaction. 86 This was to continue until the clan of Hashim themselves outlawed Muhammad, or until he renounced his call and claim to Prophethood. 87 No less than forty leaders of Quraish set their seal to this agreement though not all of them showed the same fervor, and some of them had to be won over. 88 The clan of Muttalib refused to forsake their Hashimite cousins, and so they were included in the ban. 89 The written pact was hung inside the Ka’bah, as was then the practice, for record and sanctification. The Quraish were certain that the boycott, isolation, and starvation would be more effective than the previous policy of harm and injury, though the latter continued as well. 90 The boycott it was hoped would cause the tribes to renounce Muhammad and thus cause him to fall under the hand of the Quraish. 91 Eventually, once it took effect, the boycott had a severe impact, and Khadijah, the wife of the Prophet, most particularly, suffered greatly. 92 The ban lasted two years. During it, Muslims of the other clans, especially Abu Bakr and Omar, devised various methods of thwarting the boycott. When two years had passed, Abu Bakr could no longer be counted as a wealthy man. But despite such help there was perpetual shortage of food amongst the two boycotted clans, and sometimes the shortage bordered on famine. 93

In the year 619, the Prophet lost in a very short space of time two of his dearest relatives: his uncle Abu Talib, and his wife Khadidjah. 94 Before he died, the leaders of the Quraish went up to Abu Talib and addressed him as he lay on his deathbed:‘O Abu Talib, we hold for you great respect and we appreciate your counsel and wisdom. Now that you are about to leave us, and, knowing the conflict that has arisen between us and your nephew, do please call him and ask him to give us assurance as we are wont to give you for him, that he will leave us alone and we will leave him alone, that he will leave us to practice our religion and we shall leave him to practice his.’

Muhammad and his companions came to the meeting in his uncle’s house. 95 After he was told about their purpose he said:
‘Yes, indeed! All I want from you is this one word of assurance which, if given, will bring you mastery of all Arabia as well as Persia, namely…’

‘Speak out,’ interrupted Abu Jahl, ‘by your father, we shall give it to you! Not one word but ten.’

Muhammad continued: ‘Namely, that you witness with me that there is no God but God and repudiate all that you worship besides Him.’ 96

Some of them said to Muhammad: ‘Do you want to make all the gods one?’ Turning to one another, the men of Quraish said: ‘By God, this man is not going to give you any word of assurance such as you require.’ The leaders of Quraish left Abu Talib’s house without satisfaction, and Abu Talib died a few days later. 97

Abu Talib was succeeded by Abu Lahab as chief of the Hashim; but the protection that Abu Lahab gave his nephew was merely nominal, and the Prophet was ill-treated as never before. On one occasion a passer-by leaned over his gate and tossed a piece of putrefying offal into his cooking pot; and once when he was praying in the courtyard of his house, a man threw over him a sheep’s uterus filthy with blood and excrement. 98 On another occasion, when the Prophet was coming from the Ka’bah, a man took a handful of dirt and threw it in his face and over his head. When he returned home, one of his daughters washed him clean of it, weeping the while. ‘Weep not, little daughter,’ he said, ‘God will protect thy father.’ 99

Suffering severe persecution, the Prophet went to Taif to seek support from the Thaqif. Instead, the brothers he went to see stirred up their louts and slaves to scorn him and ridicule him as he was pursued by a mob. The Prophet went on preaching the message, and whenever a chance came at the season of pilgrimage, he contacted Arab tribes to invite them to believe in Allah and that he was a Prophet who had been sent by Him. He met a number of residents from Medina (called Yathreb then) at the season of pilgrimage to whom he expounded Islam and recited the Qur’an. 100 They listened to his preaching and became Muslims. They left the Prophet and went back to Yathreb believing in Islam. Reaching the town they told their people about the Prophet calling on them to embrace Islam until it became widely spread amongst them. 101

Subsequent arrivals from Yathreb during the following pilgrimage season gave their first pledge to the Prophet. 102 More pledges were made, and following these pledges, the Prophet ordered his companions to emigrate to Yathreb, whilst he remained in Makkah. In Makkah taking advantage of the death of Abu Talib, Abu Jahl, known for his zealous idolatry and opposition to Islam, having now succeeded to the principality of the community, convened an assembly of Quraish and their allies in order to decide the fate of the Apostle. 103 His death was resolved; and they agreed that a sword from each tribe should be buried in his heart, to divide the guilt of his blood. 104 The assassins came to the Prophet’s house, and watched at the door. They were to strike him as he came out, whether at night or in the early morning, but a blindness fell upon the would-be murderers, and the Prophet passed them by without they could see him, on his way to the house of Abu Bakr. 105 The assassins meanwhile were deceived by the figure of Ali who lay on the bed, and was covered with the green mantle of the Apostle. 106

Now, the Prophet and Abu Bakr began their flight out of Makkah to Yathreb. For three days Muhammad and his companion remained concealed in the cave of Thor, at the distance of a league from Makkah. At the end of each evening, they received from the son and daughter of Abu Bakr a secret supply of intelligence and food. 107 On one occasion, their pursuers came very close to the cave where the fugitives were concealed. To Abu Bakr, who showed great apprehension, Muhammad whispered, ‘Do not grieve; God is with us.’ According to some Hadith books, it is reported that when the Quraish party arrived at the cave entrance, Abu Bakr exclaimed: ‘If any one of them looks at his feet he will find us,’ and that the Prophet had answered, ‘O Abu Bakr, how can you fear for two men whose constant companion is God Himself?’ The Quraish men were further convinced that the cave was empty when they saw the entrance to the cave covered indeed blocked with branches growing from a tree nearby. They then agreed to leave and called one another for their return to Makkah. Only then did the two refugees within the cave feel reassured. Muhammad prayed: ‘Praise be to God! God is greater than all!’ 108

For seven consecutive days they travelled, seeking shelter from the heat during the day and moving with great speed under cover of night. When they reached the quarters of the tribe of Banu Sabin, the elder chieftain Buraydah came over to greet them. By now they had almost reached their destination. 109

Prophet Muhammad in Medina and After (622-632)

Muhammad was welcomed in Yathreb, and in his honour, its citizens changed its name to that of Madinat Al-Nabi (The City of the Prophet), Medina). This year, 622, was the beginning of the Hijra (Emigration), and the beginning of the Muslim Hijri calendar. It is in Medina that the first mosque of Islam was built. 110 Muhammad spent most of his time in the mosque, teaching transforming the new Muslims from unruly tribesmen into a brotherhood of believers. 111 ‘Guided by the Qur’an,’ says Abd Al-Haleem, ‘he acted as teacher, judge, arbitrator, adviser, consoler, and father figure to the new community.’ 112

One of the reasons the people of Medina had invited the Prophet to migrate there was the hope that he would be a good arbitrator between their warring tribes, as indeed proved to be the case. 113 Muhammad also made a pact of mutual solidarity between the immigrants (known as the Muhajirrun) and the Muslims of Medina (known as the Ansars) (Helpers), an alliance based not on tribal but on religious solidarity, a departure from previous social norms. 114 He brought together one of the Immigrants with one of the Helpers in these contracts, so that the Immigrants would not feel like strangers in the land, and so that the Helpers would forget their old feuds and vendettas. 115 Muhammad also made a wider pact between all the tribes that they would lend support to each other in defending the city should it come under attack, and each tribe would be equal under this arrangement, including the Jews, and all were free to practice their religion. 116

It was during this Medina period that several of the essential rules of Islam were established. Among these were the five daily prayers. Believers were allowed to perform the rites alone or in company. Those who were able to come to the mosque for prayers ranged themselves, rank upon rank, behind a leader, who stood in front of the congregation. Behind him, the believers bowed and prostrated themselves in unison. 117 Some modern psychologists, according to Glubb, have seen, in these precise and synchronised movements, the virtue of inculcating discipline and comradeship, in the same manner as military drill. When considerable numbers began to attend the daily prayers at the Prophet’s mosque, the need was felt for a time-signal to enable them all to line up simultaneously. 118 The second duty laid upon the Muslims at this period was that of giving alms. Alms, in the Islamic community, is a strictly defined proportion of certain types of wealth, and has come more closely to resemble a tax than a charitable gift. In early Islam, the alms were distributed among the poorer members of the community. The third duty inaugurated at this time was the fast of Ramadhan. Two years after the emigration of Muhammad to Medina, the month of Ramadhan of the year 624 was to witness a turning point in Muslim history. 119 This was the Battle of Badr, the first battle of the Islamic era. 120

‘The religion of Islam,’ Haykal remarks, ‘is not one of illusion and fantasy. Neither is it a religion which addresses only the individual as such and urges him to rise to perfection. Rather, Islam is the natural religion, the religion which naturally belongs to all men, individuals as well as groups. It is the religion of truth, of freedom, and of order. As long as it is also the nature of man to fight and to make war, to discipline that nature and to limit this inclination within the narrowest frontier is all that is possible for men to bear and abide by; it is all that humanity can hope to achieve in its struggle toward goodness and perfection. By far the best disciplining of this inclination to war is to limit it to pure defense of one’s person, one’s faith, one’s freedom of opinion, and one’s freedom to preach. The greatest wisdom is to regulate the making of war so that all the rights and dignities of man may be respected and observed to the utmost. And this is precisely what Islam has sought to do… That is precisely what the Qur’an has commanded.’ 121

A Quraish caravan left Syria in the direction of Makkah early in 624. It was led by Abu Sufyan, a prominent figure in Makkah and the chief of the Umayyah clan. 122 Abu Sufyan, sensing that the Muslims were following him, sent Damdam Al-Ghifari to mobilize the Quraish. 123 The Bedouin messenger, Damdam, rode fast and arriving early one morning in Makkah, couched his camel below the Ka’aba, turned the saddle back to front, tore his clothes, and called at the top of his voice on the people to rush to save the caravan. 124 Men rushed right and left, arming and mounting, hardly anyone staying behind, and those who, for one reason or another, were unable to go, hired a substitute to take their place. 125 The Quraish mobilized a 1,000-men strong army, in a very short period of time. 126 The Muslims, just over 300, who had set out in search of a caravan guarded by thirty or forty riders, now confronted a force of over 1,000. 127 At any rate, the caravan had already escaped. The Prophet gave the Muslims the choice of withdrawing or pressing ahead for a confrontation with the Makkans; the decision to press on was unanimous and enthusiastic. 128 The Muslims encamped at Badr, where they awaited the arrival of the enemy. The valley in which lay the wells of Badr was bounded on the north and east by high hills. To the south the view was blocked by a rocky spur, but on the west, where the country sloped away to the sea, only a low line of sand dunes closed in the valley. 129 Over these dunes the Makkan line advanced towards the Muslims, drawn up in front of the spring beneath their three tribal standards. 130 As customary, first, the duels between champions from both sides took place. In a six-man fight, the Muslims slew their foes, a victory which probably did much to undermine the morale of the Quraish. Many of the Makkans may suddenly have feared that their opponents really were receiving supernatural assistance. 131 The end of these duels served as a signal for the start of the battle, which took place on Friday morning of the seventh of Ramadhan. The two parties moved forward. The Muslim army was very well organised as the Prophet himself supervised its deployment. He addressed his Companions insisting most particularly on the importance of putting up a determined fight. 132 A fierce melee followed, where every Muslim fighter faced three of his opponents. The inferiority in their numbers did not seem to hamper the believers as their morale and belief in their cause were much stronger. 133 The Quraish soon found themselves at a disadvantage. They had advanced against the Muslims across soft sand dunes, while the believers awaited them standing on firm soil, and just as the lines were about to engage, a violent squall of wind whipped up the sand in the faces of the Quraish. 134 At some point, the Prophet took a handful of gravel and said in the direction of the Quraish: ‘May confusion seize these faces.’ Then he cast the pebbles at them and ordered his companions to counter attack. For some time the fight had swayed back and forth without either side gained a clear advantage. Now the Quraish began to waver and then to give ground, then suddenly broke and fled in a wild rout. 135 Their loss amounted to eighty or so men, but the decisiveness of the battle was remarkable for such an outcome. Not only did the battle strengthen Muslim morale and confidence, amongst the slain that day were Islam’s greatest enemies, most particularly Abu Jahl, and even Abu Lahab, who had not participated in the battle, died a few days later. 136

In 625, a year after the Battle of Badr, the Quraish were ready to march again, having put in the field an army of 3,000 men, including 200 horsemen, and about 1,000 men in heavy armour, advancing to the vicinity of Medina. 137 The Muslims first had the upper-hand. However, as the Muslim archers, tempted by the spoil, against the Prophet’s strict orders, left their positions, Khalid Ibn Al-Waleed, who led the Quraish cavalry, mounted a swift attack on the few archers who still remained, falling on them from behind. 138 Muslim ranks fell into great confusion, and in the midst of the Muslim disarray, even the life of the Prophet seemed in danger. He suffered an injury to his face as he fought with a small group a group of Quraish attackers. 139 When the Quraish heard the news, their forces fell on Muslim ranks with renewed vigour. 140 The Muslims who stood close to the Prophet drew a close circle around him. 141 In the main battlefield, true to his reputation, Hamzah distinguished himself, his sword seeming invincible. Hind, the wife of Abu Sufyan, had promised Wahshi, an Abyssinian slave, a great amount of wealth should he succeed in killing Hamzah. To encourage him further, Jubayr Ibn Mut’am, his master, promised Wahshi his freedom if he succeeded. The story following was later told by Wahshi:

‘I set out among others, planning to fight with my javelin as all Abyssinians do, for I hardly ever miss my objective with it. When the great encounter took place, I looked around for Hamzah and caught him with my eyes. I saw him right in the middle of the melee, standing out as clearly as a black camel in the herd and felling everybody around him with his sword. I swung my javelin and, making sure it was well balanced, I threw it at him and it fell right on him hitting him in the abdomen and piercing him through. I left my javelin and its victim pinned down under it until he died. Later on I came to him and pulled my javelin away and returned then to the camp and fought no longer. I had killed him in order to win my liberty, and that I had now achieved. When I returned to Makkah, my manumission was officially recognized.’ 142

In the meantime, the group fighting with the Prophet began to retreat whilst keeping their foes at bay. When they reached the entrance to the valley on the other side, Ali filled his shield with water, washed Muhammad’s face and poured some water on his head. Abu `Ubaydah Ibn Al-Jarrah, who years later led the Muslim armies in Syria, pulled out the two links of chain from Muhammad’s wound, and his two front teeth fell off in the process. While this was taking place, Khalid Ibn Al-Waleed pursued the Muslims on the hillside with a small force of Makkan cavalry. 143 But they were repelled by Omar Ibn Al Khattab and a number of the Prophet’s companions. The Muslims continued their retreat. So great was their exhaustion that when it was noon, the Prophet led the prayer seated, suffering as he was from his wounds, and the Muslims prayed behind him seated also. 144

The Quraish returned to Makkah after burying their dead. The Muslims returned to the battlefield to bury theirs, and Muhammad sought out the body of his uncle, Hamzah. When he saw that his body was mutilated, Muhammad felt profoundly sad and vowed that he would never allow such a hateful thing to happen again and that he would someday avenge these evil deeds. 145 ‘If Allah wills me to win over the Quraish, I will cut thirty of them to pieces!’ 146 he exclaimed.

It was on this occasion that the revelation was made:

‘Call mankind to the way of your Lord with wisdom and sound advice, and reason with them in a well-mannered way. Indeed, your Lord is well aware of those who have gone astray from His way and He is well aware of those who are guided. And if you retaliate, let your retaliation be no more than has been meted out to you. But if you bear patiently, it is certainly better for you. Do bear then patiently, for the reward of your patience is with God. Do not feel sad nor give way to anger because of their plotting. Indeed God is with those who are pious, and those who are doers of good.’(16:125-127)

The Prophet of God then pardoned, bore patiently, and laid down an absolute prohibition against mutilation. Hamzah was buried on the spot where he lay, Muhammad leading the prayer and Hamzah’s sister, Safiyyah, daughter of `Abd Al Muttalib, participating. All prayed for God to show them His mercy. The Prophet then commanded the burial of the fallen faithful, seventy in all; and, when this was completed, he led his party back to Medina. 147

In 627 Abu Sufyan and the Quraish resumed the offensive, this time with 10,000 men. 148 Unable to meet such a force in battle, Muhammad defended Medina by digging a trench before the city, he himself leading the work of digging it. 149 For nearly a month, the Muslim army submitted to showers of arrows in constant expectation of attack. 150

The situation reached a stalemate until one Tuesday night Medina was struck by a storm. Cold winds lashed at the allied camp and howled across the valley, and the temperature dropped sharply. 151 The allied camp was exposed, and the storm seemed to hit their camp extremely hard. 152 Disheartened, the Quraish and their allies packed up what was left of their belongings and fled to Makkah. 153

Summing up the story of these three encounters, Guillaume states:

‘Muhammad accomplished his purpose in the course of three small engagements: the number of combatants in these never exceeded a few thousand, but in importance they rank among the world’s decisive battles.’ 154

Altogether, in the years spent in Medina, the Prophet fought sixty five campaigns, of which 27 he personally led. 155 At the height of these successes, in 628, the Prophet passed with the Quraish the treaty of Al-Hudaybiyah, which was to secure a ten-years truce.

In the 8th year of the Hijra, that is two years into the treaty of Al-Hudaybiyah, the Quraish broke the truce. They attacked a tribe which was in alliance with the Prophet and killed many amongst them even in the sanctuary of Makkah. 156 The Prophet called on all men able to carry arms, and marched to Makkah. The Quraish were overawed, and their cavalry were routed without bloodshed. 157

In the year 630, the Prophet entered his native city. His first deed was to destroy the idols. When he appeared before the Ka’bah, he found the idols arrayed around it. Thereupon he started to pierce their eyes with the point of his arrow saying:

‘Truth has come and falsehood has vanished. Verily, falsehood is bound to vanish.’ (17: 81.)

Following that he declared a general amnesty towards his former foes, and, all but four people guilty of unpardonable crimes, were forgiven their former enmity of Islam, including Abu Sufyan, the former Quraish leader who led the fight against Muhammad, were pardoned. 158 Even Wahshi, who had slain the Prophet’s uncle, Hamzah, was equally pardoned.

Wahshi said:

‘I stayed in Makkah until the Prophet entered it on the Day of the Conquest. I fled to Taif. When the delegation of Taif went to declare their conversion to Islam, I heard various sorts of people say that I should go to Syria or Yemen or any other place. While I was in such a distress, a man said to me: ‘Woe to you! The Prophet never kills anyone entering his religion.’ I went to the Prophet in Al-Medina, and the moment he saw me I was already giving my true testimony. When he saw me he said: ‘Is it you Wahshi? I replied ‘Yes Messenger of Allah.’ ‘Tell me, how did you kill Hamzah?’ I told him, and when I finished he told me: ‘Woe to you! Get out of my sight and never show your face to me!’ From that time, I always avoided wherever the Prophet went lest he should see me until he died.’ 159

Afterwards, during the Caliphate of Abu Bakr (632-634), when the Rhiddah Wars threatened the very existence of the nascent Islamic state, Wahshi, himself, who now fought alongside the Muslim armies, killed the false prophet Musailamah, with the same spear with which he had killed Hamzah. 160

One of the greatest threats to the nascent Islamic state came in the 9th year of the Hijra, in 631, and was from outside the Arab Peninsula: Byzantium. Byzantium had just completed a twenty-six year long, protracted war with Persia (602-628), and had had the upper hand. Now Byzantine attention turned south towards Arabia. The Prophet was soon to hear that the Byzantines were raising a large force to attack the new Muslim state. The Prophet verified the information and found it was accurate. It was mostly communicated by Coptic traders, who came to Arabia to sell their goods. 161 The intelligence said that the Byzantines were raising an army in Syria, and the Emperor had given his soldiers their salaries and allowances a year in advance. The Christian Arab tribes of Lakhm, Judham, Amilah, and Ghassan also mobilised to join the Byzantines, moving their forces into the Balqa Plains in Palestine. 162

The Muslim expedition, known as the Expedition of Tabuk, included 30,000 Muslim warriors, the largest force ever mobilised by Islam. Realising the strength of this force, the Byzantines, who had fought and suffered at the hands of a much smaller force of 3,000 Muslims at Mu’tah, preferred to withdraw from the field of fighting, and no armed encounter took place on this occasion. It was, however, only a break, for Byzantine ambitions remained alive, and conflict would resume soon after the death of the Prophet, during the Caliphate of Abu Bakr (632-634).

Whilst the external challenge was daunting, equally daunting were the internal ones. One such challenge was the sudden upsurge of false prophets. One of them, Musailama, had written to Mohammed offering to share the land: ‘From Musailamah, the Apostle of God, to Mohammed the Apostle,’ [he wrote] ‘Let us divide the earth between us, half to you and half to me.’

The reply, however, was discouraging: ‘From Mohammed the Apostle of God to Musailamah the Liar. The earth is the Lord’s. He causes such of His servants to inherit it as He pleases.’ 163 Subsequently Musailamah would resume his hostility during the Riddah Wars, and would be killed at the great battle of Al-Yamamah.

The Prophet had already endeavoured to extend the call to Islam to the people and princes of adjacent countries from his time in Medina. The Emperor of Byzantium, the ruler of Egypt, and the Negus of Abyssinia answered with kind words. The emperor of Persia and the chieftains of the buffer states in Northern Arabia rejected the call with contempt and defiance. The Prophet had sent a letter to Badham, Viceroy of Yemen, to be forwarded to Khosroes, King of Persia. Khosroes tore the letter into pieces, ordering Badham either to restore the Prophet to his right mind, or to send him his head. 164 As soon as this insult was made known to the Prophet, he exclaimed: ‘Thus shall Allah asunder the kingdom of Khosroes, and reject his supplications.’ Khosroes was soon after murdered by his son Sirses. 165

In the year 632, Prophet Muhammad gave his farewell message at Mount Arafat, as in these extracts:

‘O people, lend me an attentive ear, for I don’t know whether, after this year, I shall ever be amongst you again. Therefore listen to what I am saying to you very carefully and take these words to those who could not be here. O people, just as you regard this month, this day, this city as sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as a sacred trust. Return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful owners. Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you. Remember you will indeed meet your Lord, and that He will indeed reckon your deeds.

Allah has forbidden you to take usury (interest), therefore all interest obligation shall henceforth be waived. Your capital, however, is yours to keep. You will neither inflict nor suffer any inequity. Beware of Satan. He has lost all hope that he will ever be able to lead you astray in big things, so beware of following him in small things.

O people, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to your women, but they also have right over you. Remember that you have taken them as your wives only under Allah’s trust and with His permission. If they abide by your right then to them belongs the right to be fed and clothed in kindness. Do treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers. And it is your right that they do not make friends with any one of whom you do not approve, as well as never be unchaste.

O people, listen to me in earnest, worship Allah, perform your five daily prayers, fast during the month of Ramadan, and give your wealth in Alms (Zakat.) Perform Hajj if you can afford to.

All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non Arab, nor a non Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a White (person) has no superiority over a Black, nor a Black has any superiority over a White except by piety and good deed.

Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim, and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Remember, one day you will appear before Allah and answer for your deeds. So beware, do not astray from the path of righteousness after I am gone. O people, no Prophet or Apostle will come after me and no new faith will be born.

Reason well, therefore, O people, and understand my words which I convey to you. I leave behind me two things, the Qur’an and my example, the Sunnah, and if you follow these you will never go astray. All those who listen to me shall pass on my words to all others and those to others again; and may the last ones understand my words better than those who listen to me directly. Be my witness O Allah, that I have conveyed Your message to Your people.’

Shortly after, the Prophet died in the arms of his wife Ayesha, on the eighth of June, 632. 166

Important Events in the Life of Prophet Muhammad

  • 570 Birth of Muhammad (PBUH) (August 20).
  • 576 Death of Muhammad’s mother.
  • 595 Mohammed marries Khadidjah.
  • 610 Call to Prophethood: Beginning of the Revelation of the Qur’an.
  • 613 Public preaching of Islam begins.
  • 615 First Muslim Migration to Abyssinia.
  • 617 Second Migration to Abyssinia.
  • 619 Death of Khadidjah; death of Abu Talib.
  • 621 First meeting of Aqabah.
  • 621 Al-Isra’ Wal Mi’raj (Night Journey and Ascent to Heaven)
  • 622 Second meeting of al-Aqabah.
  • 622Attempted assassination of the Prophet by the Makkans.
  • July 16, 622 The Hijrah (The Prophet’s Migration to Yathrib).
  • H/622 The Prophet builds mosque and residence in Medina
  • H/622 The Prophet founds the first Islamic State.
  • H/624 Battle of Badr.
  • H/625 Battle of Uhud.
  • H/627 Battle of the Ditch.
  • H/628 Al-Hudeybiyah Peace Treaty.
  • H/628 Campaign of Khaybar.
  • H/628 The Prophet sends delegates to present Islam to neighbouring monarchs.
  • H/629 Khalid Ibn al-Walid and ‘Amr Ibn al-‘As accept Islam.
  • H/630 Campaign of Makkah.
  • H/630 The Makkans accept Islam.
  • H/630 Destruction of idols and cleansing of Ka’bah.
  • H/630 Campaign of Hawazim and Hunayn.
  • H/632 Farewell Pilgrimage of the Prophet.
  • H/632 Death of the Prophet (PBUH).

Reading List

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  • Muhammad Mustafa Azami: Studies in Hadith Methodology and Literature (Indianapolis: American Trust Publications, 1977).
  • J. Brown: The Canonization of Al-Bukhari and Muslim; Brill, Leyden; 2007.
  • J. Davenport: An Apology for Mohammed and the Koran; J. Davy; London; 1869.
  • F. M. Denny: Introduction to Islam; Macmillan; New York; 1985.
  • J. W. Draper: A History of the Intellectual Development of Europe; Vol I; Revised edition; George Bell and Sons, London, 1875.
  • J. W. Draper: History of the Conflict Between Religion and Science; Henry S. King & Co; London; 1875.
  • W. Durant: The Age of Faith, Simon and Shuster, New York; 6th printing; 1950.
  • L. Esposito: Islam the Straight Path; Oxford University Press; 1998.
  • I.R. al-Faruqi and L. L al-Faruqi: The Cultural Atlas of Islam; Mc Millan Publishing Company New York, 1986.
  • F. Gabrieli: Muhammad and the Conquests of Islam; World University Library, London; 1968.
  • R. Garaudy: Comment l’Homme devint Humain; Editions J.A; 1978.
  • E. Gibbon: The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire; vol 5; ed.W. Smith; London, 1858.
  • J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; Hodder and Stoughton, London; 1970.
  • A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; tr. From Arabic by I.A. Al-Faruqi; The Islamic Book Trust, Selangor, Malaysia; 2008.
  • M. Heinen: Religion and Science in Islam, in Islam: Encyclopaedia of the History of Science, Technology and Medicine in Non Western Cultures; Editor: H. Selin; Kluwer Academic Publishers. London, 1997. pp 861-4.
  • Ibn Hisham; Annotated recension of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat rasul Allah (The Life of the Prophet); Wustenfeld.
  • Ibn Hisham: Sirat Ibn Hisham: Biography of the Prophet as abridged by Abdus Salam M. Harun; Al-Falah Foundation; Cairo; 2000.
  • Mohammed Ibn Ishaq (151/769) and Mohammed Ibn Hisham (218/834): Sirat al-Nabiy Salat Allahu Alayhi wa Sallam; ed by M.M. Abd Al-Hamid; Cairo; 1963; vol 1.
  • Ibn Khaldun: The Muqaddimah, tr: F. Rosenthal, Bollingen series, XLIII; New York, Princeton University Press, 1958.
  • T. Al-Ismail: The Life of Muhammad; Taha Publishers; London; 1988.
  • M. Iqbal: Islam and Science; Ashgate, 2002.
  • R. Jackson: “Fifty key figures in Islam”, Taylor & Francis, 2006.
  • Hisham Ibn al-Kalbi: The Book of Idols; tr. from Arabic by N.A. Faris; Princeton University Press; 1952.
  • K.M. Khaalid; A.Hamid Eliva: Men and Women Around the Messenger; tr into English by M. M. Gemeiah et al; dar al-Manarah; Al-Mansurah; Egypt; 2003.
  • G. Le Bon: La Civilisation des Arabes, Syracuse; 1884.
  • M. Lings: Muhammad, His Life Based on the Earliest Sources; Islamic Texts Society; George Allen and Unwin; 1983.
  • S.M. Al-Mubarakpuri: The Sealed Nectar; Darussalam; Riyadh-London, 2002.
  • M. Pickthall: Introduction to The Meaning of the Glorious Qur’an; Taha; London; first printing 1930.
  • I.M. Ra’ana: Economic System Under Umar the Great, S.M. Ashraf; Lahore; 1970.
  • H.U. Rahman: A Chronology of Islamic History: 570-1000 CE; Mansell Publishing Limited; London; 1989.
  • J. Robson: Al-Bukhari: Encyclopaedia of Islam; New Series; Vol 1; pp. 1296-7.
  • B. Rogerson: The Heirs of the Prophet Muhammad; Little Brown; London; 2006.
  • A.M. As-Sallabi: Umar Ibn al-Khattab; His Life and Times; Tr. into English from Arabic edition by N.Al-Khattab; International Islamic Publishing House; Riyadh, 2007.
  • A. Salahi: Muhammad, Man and Prophet, The Islamic Foundation, Leicester, 2006.
  • Sayid Sulayman Nadwi: Muhammad the Ideal Prophet; tr. M. Ahmad; International Islamic Federation of Student Organizations; 2006.
  • S.P. Scott: History of the Moorish Empire; in 3 vols; The John Lippincott Company; Philadelphia; 1904.
  • R. B. Smith: Mohammed and Mohammedanism; London; Smith Elder; 1876 ed.
  • S. Spectorsky: Al-Bukhari; Dictionary of the Middle Ages; vol 2; pp. 397-9.
  • Jalal Al-Din al-Suyuti: The History of the Khalifas Who Took the Right Way; Taha; London; 1998.
  • Al-Tabari: Tarikh al-Rusul wal Muluk; Dar al-Ma’arif; 4th ed.
  • Joseph Van Ess: Islamic Perspectives: In H. Kung et al: Christianity and the World Religions; Doubleday; London; 1986.
  • Washington Irving: Mahomet and his Successors; New York and London, 1970.

Notes:

  1. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 52.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid; p. 53.
  4. A. Salahi: Muhammad, Man and Prophet, The Islamic Foundation, Leicester, 2006; p. 31.
  5. Ibid.
  6. Sayid Sulayman Nadwi: Muhammad the Ideal Prophet; tr. M. Ahmad; International Islamic Federation of Student Organizations; 2006; p. 85.
  7. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 71.
  8. Ibid.
  9. Ibid.
  10. M. Lings: Muhammad, His Life Based on the Earliest Sources; Islamic Texts Society; George Allen and Unwin; 1983; p. 34.
  11. Ibn Hisham; Annotated recension of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat rasul Allah (The Life of the Prophet); Wustenfeld; p. 120
  12. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 35.
  13. Ibid; p. 36.
  14. Al-Tabari: Tarikh al-Rusul wal Muluk; Dar al-Ma’arif; 4th ed; vol 2; pp. 300-1. M. Lings: Muhammad, His Life Based on the Earliest Sources; Islamic Texts Society; George Allen and Unwin; 1983; p. 44.
    • Introduction to The Meaning of the Glorious Qur’an; by M. M. Pickthall; Taha; London; first printing 1930; p. x.
    • M.M. Pickthall was English born, and converted to Islam, before in 1930 making a translation of the Qur’an into English.
  15. J. Glubb: A Short History; op cit; p. 30
  16. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 91.
  17. Ibid.
  18. Ibid.
  19. B. Rogerson: The Heirs of the Prophet Muhammad; Little Brown; London; 2006; p. 238. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 91.
  20. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 91.
  21. M. Lings: Muhammad, His Life Based on the Earliest Sources; Islamic Texts Society; George Allen and Unwin; 1983; p. 51.
  22. Ibid; p. 49.
  23. Ibid.
  24.  A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 91.
  25. J.L. Esposito: Islam the Straight Path; Oxford University Press; 1998, p. 7.
  26. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 52.
  27. J. Glubb: A Short History of the Arab Peoples; Hodder and Stoughton, 1969; p. 32.
  28. Ibid.
  29. W. Durant: The Age of Faith; op cit; p. 165.
  30. J. L. Esposito: Islam, the Straight Path; op cit; p. 7.
  31. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 95.
  32. Ibid.
  33. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 52.
  34. Ibn Hisham; Ibn ishaq; Wustenfeld; 168.
  35.  M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 52.
  36. Ibid; p. 53.
  37. Ibid.
  38. Ibn Saad: Kitab al-Tabaqat Al-Kabir; Leyden; IV; 164. 164.
  39. Ibn Hisham/Ibn Ishaq; Wistenfeld; op cit; pp. 151-4.
  40. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 133.
  41. Ibid.
  42. Ibid.
  43. K.M. Khaalid; A.Hamid Eliva: Men and Women Around the Messenger; tr into English by M. M. Gemeiah et al; dar al-Manarah; Al-Mansurah; Egypt; 2003; p.131.
  44. Ibid: p.133.
  45. Ibid; p.134.
  46. Ibid.
  47. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 60.
  48. Ibid.
  49. Ibid; pp. 60-1.
  50. Ibid; p. 61.
  51. Ibid.
  52. Ibn Hisham/Ibn Ishaq; Wustenfed; op cit; p. 188.
  53. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; pp. 95-6.
  54.  M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 62.
  55. S.M. Al-Mubarakpuri: The Sealed Nectar; Darussalam; Riyadh-London, 2002; pp. 88-9.
  56. E. Gibbon: The Decline and Fall; op cit; p. 355.
  57. B. Rogerson: The Heirs of the Prophet; op cit; p. 238.
  58. Introduction to The Meaning of the Glorious Qur’an (Pickthall); pp. xii-xiii.
  59. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 79.
  60. Ibid.
  61. Ibid.
  62. W. Durant: The Age of Faith; op cit; p. 165.
  63. Ibid.
  64. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 79.
  65. In Ibn Hisham: Sirat Ibn Hisham: Biography of the Prophet as abridged by Abdus Salam M. Harun; Al-Falah Foundation; Cairo; 2000; p.56.
  66. Ibid.
  67. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 82.
  68. Ibid; p. 81.
  69. Ibid.
  70. Ibid.
  71. Ibid; p. 83.
  72. Ibid; pp. 83-4.
  73. Ibid; p. 84.
  74. Ibid; p. 84.
  75. I.R. and L.L. Al-Faruqi: The Cultural Atlas of Islam; Mc Millan Publishing Company, New York, 1986; p.119.
  76. J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; Hodder and Stoughton, London; 1970; p. 123.
  77. Ibid.
  78. Ibn Hisham: Sirat Rasul Allah; part one; pp. 119-20 in The meaning of the Glorious Qur’an (Pickthall); op cit; pp. 226-7; J.B. Glubb; The Life and Times; op cit; pp. 123-4.
  79. J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; op cit; p. 124.
  80. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 127.
  81. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 88.
  82. Ibid.
  83. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 127.
  84. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 88.
  85. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 127.
  86. M. Lings: Muhammad, op cit; p. 88.
  87. Ibid.
  88. Ibid.
  89. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 128.
  90. Ibid.
  91. S.M. Al-Mubarakpuri: The Sealed Nectar; Darussalam; London, 2002; p. 109.
  92. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 89.
  93. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 148.
  94. Ibid; p. 149.
  95. Ibid.
  96.  Ibid. Ibn Hisham: Sirat; op cit; p. 77.
  97. M. Lings: Muhammad; op cit; p. 98.
  98. Ibid.
  99. Ibn Hisham: Sirat Ibn Hisham: Biography of the Prophet as abridged by Abdus Salam M. Harun; Al-Falah Foundation; Cairo; 2000; p. 84.
  100. Ibid.
  101. Ibid; p. 85.
  102. E. Gibbon: The Decline and Fall; op cit; vol 5; p. 355.
  103. Ibid.
  104. M.M. Pickhtal: The Meaning, op cit, p. xv.
  105. E. Gibbon: The Decline and Fall; op cit; p. 355.
  106. J. Davenport: An Apology for Mohammed; op cit; p. 30.
  107. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. .
  108. Ibid; p. .
  109. T. Al-Ismail: The Life of Muhammad; Taha Publishers; London; 1988, p. 87.
  110. The Qur’an, a New Translation (M.A.S. Abdel Haleem); Oxford University Press; 2004-5; p. xii.
  111. Ibid.
  112. Ibid.
  113. Ibid.
  114. T. Al-Ismail: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. 88.
  115. The Qur’an, a New Translation (M.A.S. Abdel Haleem); op cit; p. xii.
  116. J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; op cit; p. 170.
  117. Ibid.
  118. A. Salahi: Muhammad Man and Prophet; The Islamic Foundation; Leicester; 2002; p. 253.
  119. Ibid.
  120. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. .
  121. E. Gibbon: Decline and fall; op cit; 361-2.
  122. I. Rand LL. Al-Faruqi: The Cultural Atlas; op cit; p. 205.
  123. J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; op cit; pp. 179-81.
  124. Ibid.
  125. A. Salam M. Harun: Sirat Ibn Hisham; op cit; p. 125.
  126. I.R and L. Al-Faruqi: The Cultural Atlas; op cit; p. 205.
  127. Ibid.
  128. J.B. Glubb: The Great Arab Conquests; op cit; p. 65.
  129. Ibid.
  130. J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; op cit; p. 185.
  131. A. Salahi: Muhammad Man and Prophet; op cit; p. 265-6.
  132. J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; op cit; p. 185.
  133. Ibid; p. 186.
  134. Ibid.
  135. Refer to the excellent outline by A.Salahi on the impact of that battle in Muhammad, Man and Prophet, op cit.
  136. I. Rand LL. Al-Faruqi: The Cultural Atlas; op cit; p. 205.
  137. Ibid.
  138. E. Gibbon: The Decline and Fall; op cit; vol 5; p. 363.
  139. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. .
  140. Ibid.
  141. Ibid; p. . J. B. Glubb: The Life and times, op cit; p. 208.
  142. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; op cit; p. .
  143. Ibid.
  144. Ibid.
  145. K.M. Khaalid; A.Hamid Eliva: Men and Women Around the Messenger; op cit; p. 141.
  146. A.H. Haykal: The Life of Muhammad; tr. From Arabic by I.A. Al-Faruqi; The Islamic Book Trust, Selangor, Malaysia; 2008; p. .
  147. W. Durant: The Age of Faith; op cit; p. 165.
  148. Introduction to Sura 33 in The Meaning of the Glorious Qur’an; (Pickthall); op cit; p. 299.
  149. Ibid.
  150. J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times; op cit; 241 ff.
  151. Ibid.
  152. I. Rand LL. Al-Faruqi: The Cultural Atlas; op cit; p. 207.
  153. A. Guillaume: Islam; in J.B. Glubb: The Life and Times of Muhammad; op cit; p. 167.
  154. In W. Durant: The Age of Faith; op cit; p. 165.
  155. The Meaning of the Glorious Qur’an; (Pickthall) p. xxiv.
  156. Ibid.
  157. S.P. Scott: History of the Moorish Empire; op cit; Vol 1; p.90.
  158. K.M. Khaalid; A.Hamid Eliva: Men and Women Around the Messenger; tr into English by M. M. Gemeiah et al; Dar al-Manarah; Al-Mansurah; Egypt; 2003; p.139.
  159. Ibid; p.140.
  160. A. Salahi: Muhammad; op cit; p. 685.
  161. Al-Waqidi: Kitab al-Maghazi; Oxford University Press; 1996; vol 3; p.990.
  162. J. Glubb: A Short History; op cit; p.43.
  163. J. Davenport: An Apology; op cit; pp. 40-1.
  164. Ibid.
  165. S.P. Scott: History of the Moorish Empire; op cit; Vol 1; p.91.