Prophet Muhammad (SAW) : A Humble servant of Allah

Prophet Muhammad (SAW) : A Humble servant of Allah

The prophet Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was also a very humble person. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) lived humbly all his life and never boasted of his social or political position either before or after his successes in Madinah. Once, on a journey, a few of the companions decided to slaughter a goat for a meal. They divided the work among themselves; one was to slaughter it, another to remove its skin, yet another to do the cooking. Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said that he would collect the wood for cooking. His companions said that they would do his work as well. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) replied, “I know that you will do it quite willingly but I do not like to have an eminent position in the assembly and Allah also does not like it.”‘

Umar(RA) reported Allah’s Messenger as saying, “Don’t exaggerate in praising me as the Christians did in praising Jesus who was raised to the status of God’s son. I am a servant of God; therefore call me a servant and messenger of God.”

Anas(RA) said that Allah’s Messenger used to visit the sick, accompany funerals, ride donkeys and accept the invitations of slaves. In the battle of Banu Quraiza, he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was riding a donkey whose bridle and saddle were made of palm leaves. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) also reported that Allah’s Messenger accepted without hesitation invitations to dinners consisting of mere barley and stale bread.

Anas (RA) said that the companions of Allah’s Messenger loved him more than anything in the world, but still they did not stand up when he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) came in for he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) disliked it. Again this shows his extreme humility in that he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) did not like people standing up as they stood up for kings and rulers.

Umar (RA) said that some one asked A’isha (RA) about Allah’s Messenger’s activities at home. She replied that he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) did most of the household work like ordinary people. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) sewed his clothes, mended his shoes and shirt, milked his goat and swept the house. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) shared his food with the poor and slaves. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) visited the sick, even the poorest, in their homes. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) sat with the destitute and the needy in such a way that no one could recognise him. When he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) went to any assembly, he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) sat wherever he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) found a place.’

He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was so humble that he did not like to be hailed by even ordinary reverential titles. Once a man addressed him in these words: “O my Lord! My Lord’s son! The best among us and the son of the best among us!” He said, “O people, adopt piety so that Satan may not lead you astray. I am Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam), son of Abdullah, servant of Allah and His Messenger. I do not like you to exalt me from the status Allah has given me.”

When he was entering Makkah as a conquerer, he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was not proud or boastful like a worldly conqueror. An expression of humility and gentleness was on his face and he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) lowered his head in humility so that it touched the saddle of the pack camel.

When his son Ibrahim died, by coincidence there was a solar eclipse on that day. People thought that the heavenly bodies were also sharing in the grief of the Messenger of Allah. He at once gathered all the companions in the mosque and addressed them saying, “O people! Know this, that the solar eclipse is one of the signs of Allah. It does not occur because of the birth or death of anyone.”

Muhammad (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) always lived in a humble way and taught his followers to do the same. Many incidents can be quoted to show how humble he (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was in his ordinary daily life. He (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) lived the life of an ordinary human being and showed by his example how to live humbly even in greatness.

Jazak Allah Khair for reading.

Patient Shaytan, Impatient Insaan

- by Sabeen Mansoori | Source : SuhaibWebb.com

The light is red. It seems to have been red for an eternity. The minutes tick slowly forward as the heat of the sun mercilessly beats down. Is it broken? You are so late! Not a single vehicle is passing through the intersection. It seems to be red for everyone. The empty intersection shimmers like a mirage before your eyes. Surely it must be malfunctioning. The person in the car next to you mouths a curse and as if on a cue you complain, “It’s never going to turn green.” The instant the words leave your lips, as if by magic, the light turns green and you are free to go.

How many times do we try our best not to complain but the circumstances seem truly impossible and whining just seems the natural, acceptable thing to do? We rarely question these slips of the tongue, especially because everyone around us is doing the same. But these sighs, eye rolls and snippets of ingratitude chip away at our iman (faith). They are a subtle form of arrogance. The thought process behind the complaints is that I am so special that all lights should turn green as I approach. The carefully crafted car commercials are a true indicator of what our hearts desire. In the commercials there are rarely any stop lights.  The cars zoom by or climb to heights that no mortal can actually drive to; leaving all the ordinary people in the dust. Confetti falls and flags wave in the breeze as music blares in the background.

This message of hedonistic self-fulfillment is the greatest trap of Shaytan (Satan). When he promised Allah subhanahu wa ta`ala (may He be glorified and exalted) that he would take us down with him to hellfire his strategy was already set. He did not ask for a few years to operate. He asked for our entire testing period.


“(Satan) said, “Reprieve me until the Day they are resurrected.”  (Qur’an, 7:14)

What worked for him would work for humans, since we are mere mortals crafted from clay. If he could make us arrogant and ungrateful, than the descent to moral depravity and the fall from the favor of Allah (swt) would be simple. There are those, however, who escaped from his devious designs and made it safely through this life and were guaranteed Paradise. Most eminent among them was the second Khalifah `Umar bin Khattab radi Allahu `anhu (may Allah be pleased with him).

The Prophet ﷺ (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “O Ibn Al-Khattab! By Him in Whose Hands my life is! Never does Satan find you going on a way, but he takes another way other than yours,” (Sahih Bukhari).

Subhan’Allah—glory be to God—the life of Umar (ra) is an amazing story of the love of Allah (swt) and His Messenger ﷺ. That love is stamped forever on the pages of history through his success in this world and in the Hereafter. But why did Shaytan consider him a hopeless case? Why was the Shaytan, who whispers to us day and night, afraid to even go near `Umar?

`Umar (ra) was a source of strength for the Muslims from the day he accepted Islam to the day he returned to his Lord. Verses of the Qur’an were revealed that agreed with his opinion. During his ten years as the khalifah (caliph) the Muslim state grew to an unprecedented degree as the empires of Persia and Rome toppled. `Umar (ra) had much to be proud of, but he never let arrogance taint and destroy any of his deeds. He led a simple, humble life and even at the moment of death asked his son to put his face on the ground.

If we look into his achievements as a sahabi (companion) and as a khalifah and then we read his words his greatness becomes apparent.

From `Amir ibn Rabi`a: “I saw `Umar pick up a straw from the ground and say, “Would that I were this straw! Would that I were nothing! Would that my mother never bore me!”

He walked the streets of his city for fear that Allah (swt) would hold him to account. From Dawud ibn `Ali: “If a sheep dies on the shore of the Euphrates I fear lest Allah ask me to account for it on the Day of Resurrection.”

Once `Umar (ra) called people to the Masjid and when they all assembled, `Umar stood on the pulpit and said, “I had some aunts and I would take their goats or sheep to this valley and I would come back at the end of the day and they would give me a handful of dates or raisins and I would have a miserable day.” Then he came down from the pulpit.

Abdul Rahman ibn ‘Awf (ra) said, “You haven’t done more than belittle yourself.” `Umar (ra) replied, “Woe to you son of ‘Awf! My nafs [lower self] was telling me that you are Ameer ul-Mu’mineen so who is better than you? So I wanted to teach myself a lesson and let it know who it is.”

How could Shaytan influence his nafs when he never let it stray for a moment? He reined in his ego before it had a chance to become inflated. It is reported that `Umar ibn al Khattâb (ra) said: “Bring yourselves to account before you are brought to account, and weigh your deeds before they are weighed,” (At-Tirmidhî).

It would have been so easy for `Umar (ra) to let his achievements instill in him a sense of false pride but he always considered himself nothing but a slave of Allah (swt). Presidents and kings rule for a few years and have memorials and statues built in their honor and books written eulogizing on their greatness. They write memoirs listing and elaborating on their terms in office. `Umar (ra) who was assassinated while in salah (prayer) was worried about completing his salah even as the blood poured out of his body! He was irritated with Ibn Abbas (ra) because while trying to comfort him Ibn Abbas (ra) used words of praise. `Umar (ra), whose example we can only read about and tremble at his greatness, was with his last breaths anxious about being saved from the fire:

“When `Umar was stabbed, he showed signs of agony. Ibn `Abbas, as if intending to encourage `Umar, said to him, ‘O Chief of the believers! Never mind what has happened to you, for you have been in the company of Allah’s Apostle and you kept good relations with him and you parted with him while he was pleased with you. Then you were in the company of Abu Bakr and kept good relations with him and you parted with him (i.e. he died) while he was pleased with you. Then you were in the company of the Muslims, and you kept good relations with them, and if you leave them, you will leave them while they are pleased with you.’ `Umar said, (to Ibn “Abbas), ‘As for what you have said about the company of Allah’s Apostle and his being pleased with me, it is a favor Allah did to me; and as for what you have said about the company of Abu Bakr and his being pleased with me, it is a favor Allah did to me; and concerning my impatience which you see, is because of you and your companions. By Allah! If (at all) I had gold equal to the earth, I would have ransomed myself with it from the Punishment of Allah before I meet Him,’” (Sahih Bukhari).

Shaytan was smart enough to realize early on that it would be useless to waste time trying to deceive `Umar (ra). Shaytan’s time is much better spent riding with us. Ibn Qayyim described Shaytan as patient. He can wait for years till his whispers convince someone to boast about an act of goodness they had done. Sadly for many of us he only has to wait a few seconds before we utter some words of arrogant impatience.

The reality is that we can only pay lip-service to the greatness of `Umar (ra). There is little chance that we will adopt his ascetic lifestyle and attain the high stature of humility that he achieved.  One small step that it is possible for us to take is to eliminate the whining from our lives and become content with what Allah (swt) has blessed us with. This could be as simple as accepting the seemingly interminable thirty seconds at the light, or the greater challenges that we face in our relationships, finances and health. We cannot convince Shaytan to take another street but we can gradually nurture our level of patience so that we make his journey as miserable as possible. If Allah (swt) wills, the light will still turn green and opportunities to do good will open up before our eyes.

Read Salah with Consciousness and Humility

Read Salah (Namaz) with Consciousness and Humility

Humran, the freed slave of ‘Uthman, said:

“Uthman b. ‘Affan called for ablution water and this is how he performed the ablution. He washed his hands thrice. He then rinsed his mouth and cleaned his nose with water (three times). He then washed his face three times, then washed his right arm up to the elbow three times, then washed his left arm like that, then wiped his head; then washed his right foot up to the ankle three times, then washed his left foot like that, and then said: “I saw the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) perform ablution like this ablution of mine.” Then the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: “He who performs ablution like this ablution of mine and then stood up (for prayer) and offered two rak’ahs of prayer without allowing his thoughts to be distracted, all his previous sins are expiated.” Ibn Shihab said: “Our scholars remarked: This is the most complete of the ablutions performed for prayer.”” (Sahih Muslim, Book #002, Hadith #0436 and Sahih Bukhari)

You should know that Salah consists of pillars, duties, and Sunnah. The spirit of Salah is intention, devotion, and contemplation of heart. Without contemplation, invocation is of no avail since this will be futile utterance. By the same token, all other acts of Salah will not bring forth its avowed fruits, i.e., the act of Qiyam (standing) connotes service and Sujud (prostration) implies humility and glorification, which will never be attained without attention. Allah, Most High, says, “It is not their meat nor their blood, that reaches Allah: it is your piety that reaches Him:” (Surah Al Hajj 22:37)

The following three are the yardstick of any acceptable Salah:

1. Consciousness : It means to show indifference to all worldly interests and have absolute consciousness of Allah, Most High. The cause of such consciousness is decisive intention since the man who has decisive intention to do something, necessarily puts his heart to it. Consciousness, in fact, differs according to the strength of belief in the Hereafter and scorn of this world. Therefore, if you miss consciousness in Salah, you should know that the root-cause of this is weakness of faith, and so you should exert yourself to strengthen and bolster it.

2. Reflection on the words; this is the second step after consciousness : Consciousness may be present without grasping the meaning, and so attention should be directed to grasping the meaning by refraining from thinking of other matters.

3. Glorification and fear of Allah, Most High, which emanate from two facts : realizing the Majesty and Magnificence of Allah, and looking down upon one’s self, which would result in humility and consciousness. Hope is also an important factor in Salah. The one who offers Salah should hope for the reward of Allah, and fear the punishment due to his imperfection.

The worshiper should contemplate on every act of Salah. When he hears the Adhan (Call to Salah), he should remember the call on the Day of Judgment, and prepare himself to the answer, thinking how to reply. When the worshiper covers his private parts, he should remember his concealed vices which no one knows except Allah, Most High, and which require repentance.

When the worshiper faces the Qiblah (Direction of Salah), he turns his face towards the House of Allah and turns his back to all other directions. No doubt, directing his heart towards Allah is worthwhile.

When you say: “Allah is Greatest”, your heart should not belie your tongue. If you believe that there is something greater than Allah, you will be a liar. Be cautious.

When you say: “I seek refuge in Allah from the accursed Satan”, you should take into account that you resort to Allah, Most High. In this case, if your heart is not in tune with your tongue, what you say will be nonsense and irrational. Try to grasp the meaning of what you say.

When you say: “Praise be to Allah, the Cherisher and Sustainer of the Worlds,” you should ponder over the meaning of these words. Also, you reflect on Allah’s mercy when you read: “Most Gracious, Most Merciful”. Think about Allah’s power when you read: “Master of the Day of Judgment. In this way, one should reflect on what he reads or say in Salah.

It is reported that Zararah ibn Abi Awfa (may Allah be pleased with him) fell dead when he recited the Quranic verse, “Finally, when the trumpet is sounded.” (Surah Al Muddaththir 74:8) This is, no doubt, is due to his imagination of this horrible scene.

When bowing, try to show humility to your Lord. Likewise, you should be more humble when prostrating since you place yourself in its proper and original position, namely, the earth from which you have been created. In this case, try to reflect on what you say.

Finally, you should know that performing Salah in such a manner purifies and enlightens the heart, which, in turn, could behold the Glory of Allah. In fact, no one but the devout scholars can grasp these meanings.

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