History testifies he was the best of mankind. The seal of Prophethood, the last and final messenger of God. He was sent as a mercy to the entire universe. This man, Muhammad, have you heard of him? On that Day of Judgment, when man will be judged according to his deeds, he will beg and cry for you, seeking mercy from the Creator. Tell me, should you not know him?
Words of God recorded in the Quran (His message to mankind) describe the nobleness of the last and final Prophet, Muhammad. Unaltered for the last 1,400 years, the Quran reveals Prophet Muhammad is the seal of Prophethood -- some of his predecessors in the chain of Prophethood Adam, Noah, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Moses, Yousuf, Jacob, Jesus (Peace be upon them) are mentioned in the Quran.
The acknowledgement of this noble human being by non-Muslims is indeed justifiable testimony to the above declaration by God Himself. A gift to the whole of mankind, not to the Muslims only. Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said:
“Irrespective of the religion, your neighbour should not face any inconvenience because of you. Pay a kind visit to your neighbour before going to the festival Eid prayer. If you eat when your neighbour is in hunger, then you are not a true Muslim. Add a little more water to your meat curry and send it to your neighbour as a kind gesture, there is no upper or lower class; all humans are equal and have the right to pray and eat together. Do not worship means or mediators, rather worship the one who created and empowered them. Extend a helping hand to the poor and the needy, and do not take interest.”
He taught us to pay the exact remuneration to the labourer before his or her sweat went dry. He conquered and still continues to do so, the hearts and minds of billions of people across the world. The religion of ‘peace’ taught to him by the Creator is self-sufficient and encompasses every aspect of life.
Islam has provision for health, engineering, law, agriculture, administration, marriage and military, to name a few. Those who follow him are not merely from his tribe and land, but from the four corners of the globe. Significantly, 56 countries with a staggering 2 billion followers (and growing), a quarter of humanity, are Islamic.
His inability to read or write the message in the holy Quran sent to him by the Almighty perplexes even the modern-day scientists. In his remarkable character and the Quran by the creator of humanity lies the answer to all the baffling queries of mankind.
Mahatma Gandhi in a statement to ‘Young India’ stated that it was not the sword that spreads Islam but the passion, courage and faith of Prophet Muhammad to God. The three raging battles during the Prophet’s time were all defensive when the infidels attacked Madinah where the Prophet and followers entered after facing 13 years of persecution in Mecca. But Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and his followers succeeded in conquering Mecca without bloodshed.
He was not solely the final messenger of God or the greatest religious leader of all times, but also a military headman who skunked two world superpowers -- the Romans and the Persians. His life would have certainly prompted non-Muslim Michael Hart, in his book titled ‘The 100, A ranking of the most influential persons in history,’ to place Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) on number one.
Prominent Hindu scholar Swami Lakshmi Shankaracharya said if one was to judge Islam, it was necessary that he or she studied the lifestyle and teachings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) thoroughly. It is truly interesting to note that he was very critical about Islam but upon studying it through original sources, concluded that ‘Muslims were enjoined to fight in self-defence to establish peace, and not resorting to terror.’
Arnoud Van Doorn, a former member of the PVV Party in the Netherlands, who made the anti-Islamic film ‘Fitna’ against the Prophet, decided to study the Quran and the lifestyle of the Prophet after witnessing the overwhelming responses by Muslims. After performing Hajj, he apologised for the hatred spread against the peaceful faith and embraced Islam with the pledge of producing a film in honour of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) titled ‘Muhammad, the Master of Mankind.’ He affirmed that the West-originated ‘Islamophobia’ was largely due to media propaganda, and that governments painted a dark image about the religion thereby concealing its originality and peaceful, humane and nonviolent teachings.
The last and final Prophet of the One God, at all times advised people on good manners and character. In one instance, when Mu’aadh ibn Jabal was sent to Yemen as Governor, the Prophet advised him to perfect his character which would lead people to love and respect him. His personal appeal and gentle approach won the hearts of all people, even his foes. He taught us that the most perfect believer of faith was the one whose character was finest and who was the kindest to his wife, the best amongst us were those who did not harm others with their tongues and hands, the nearest to him on the Day of Judgment would be those with the best of character, that a Muslim cannot be a liar, and that the strongest would be those who controlled their rage.
He was a sincere and loving husband who attended to household chores, a loving father who would play with children and shorten the congregation prayer when he heard children cry, a good master where his servant preferred to serve him rather than going to his father, an honest and truthful businessman who made even his enemies in Mecca entrust their valuables to him until their return. He was a great leader and a warrior too, who never rested when the companions toiled, who treated everyone with equality and respect; everyone loved him. He is the most beloved and righteous servant to his Lord, praying for long hours in the night alone but shortened his prayer in congregation, knowing that the old, sick, feeble and those who had to attend to various responsibilities were there. He was generous to the poor and the needy, and fasted on Mondays and Fridays and on the 13th, 14th and 15th of every month apart from the holy month of Ramadan. Who else could ever be as successful as a worldly and spiritual leader?
George Bernard Shaw said: “I believe if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that brings the much needed peace and happiness. I have studied him, far from being an anti-Christ he should be called the saviour of humanity. I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad that it would be acceptable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today.”
His passion for all human beings was boundless that he wept at night in prayer, supplicating for the future generations whom he would not meet in this world. Tell me, is it not an honour to have him as part of the human race?