Seerah episode 49: Aftermath of the Boycott – Consolation & Support from Allah

— The Prophet said, “The entire earth has been made a masjid & a source of purification for me.”

— How did the Prophet survive those 3 years of adversity during the social boycott of Abdul Mutallib?

  • We often talk about Prophet Muhammad as a superhero, like he’s not bothered by things or not affected by any unhappiness
    • True, the Prophet is the most remarkable human being, but at the end of the day, the Prophet is a human being
  • He did feel pain & experience difficulties
    • What got him through those moments?
    • It was through counsel & emotional nourishing from the Qur’an

— The Qur’an wasn’t just a text that’s to be recited ritually. It has meaning & purpose to it

  • One of the most profound purposes of the Qur’an is that it is a source of counsel, consolation, advice, & guidance
  • Some of the most well-known verses & passages from the Qur’an are explicitly & directly consoling the Prophet
    • It’s Allah taking care of the Prophet
  • Surat Yasin is an example
    • “By the wise Qur’an. Indeed you, [O Muhammad], are from among the messengers on a straight path.” [36:2-4]
  • Surat Ta’ha is another example
    •  “We did not send the Qur’an down to distress you.” [20:2]

— The Prophet spent 3 years of isolation & boycott in the valley of Abdul Mutallib. It’s going to be difficult to get back into the flow of things, to pick up the pieces back in Makkah

  • Now that he went back, there was some distance between him & his opposition again. The Prophet & his enemies are now back in each other’s faces. The confrontations started all over again
  • One of the Prophet’s favorite activities was going to the Ka’bah daily to pray
    • Now that he goes back to pray, the Quraysh are still again in his face
    • Imagine how tired Prophet must be of this. He just came back from 3 years dealing with suffering, and before that, he suffered oppression from his enemies. Now those enemies want to pick up the pieces back.

— When the Prophet came back & visited Haram for the first time, Abu Jahl saw him. He was ready to assassinate the Prophet before in broad daylight regardless of the repercussions, so he must have been enraged to see Prophet again, doing his thing, worshipping Allah

  • Abu Jahl didn’t even want to end the boycott. “You will stop cursing our idols, or we will curse who you worship.”
  • Of course, the Prophet has never cursed or spoken profanely about the idols (that’s against his character)
    • All he had ever said was, “Don’t worship idols.”
  • Abu Jahl doesn’t care about fact/fiction. He just wants (any excuse) to attack the Prophet
  • To temper the response of the Prophet, Allah revealed an ayah to the Prophet
    • “And do not insult those they invoke other than Allah, lest they insult Allah in enmity without knowledge. Thus We have made pleasing to every community their deeds. Then to their Lord is their return, and He will inform them about what they used to do.” [Surat al-An’am, 6:108]
    • This ayah was also guidance for the Ummah –  do not curse/do not insult those things that people worship other than Allah because as a response these people will curse Allah out of anger (in vengeance) without even understanding what they’re doing

Nadr ibn al-Harith, one of the key leaders against the Prophet, once approached the Prophet & sat down with him. Whenever Prophet experienced this, he saw it as opportunity to give dawah

  • So the Prophet started to recite some Qur’an & invite Nadr to Allah
    • Nadr & the Prophet don’t really mix, because they’re on opposite sides of the coin. Other people saw them together & gathered around them
  • Nadr then started to tell all these war stories, & said, “Wallahi, Muhammad doesn’t have better stories than I do. He just tells stories of the past & makes them up like I just embellished story of a previous war/battle.”
    • Nadr ibn al-Harith sat down with the Prophet for the sole reason of making the Prophet look like a fool & attack him
    • Imagine how difficult it would be to talk to a person like this, someone who has such an ill-will against Islam
  • The Prophet had Allah always guiding him. Allah revealed the following ayah to console the Prophet:
    •  “Blessed is He who sent down the criterion (the Qur’an) upon His servant that he may be to the world a warner”
    • “He to whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and who has not taken a son and has not had a partner in dominion and has created each thing and determined it with [precise] determination.”
    • “But they have taken besides Him gods which create nothing, while they are created, and possess not for themselves any harm or benefit and possess not [power to cause] death or life or resurrection.”
    • “And those who disbelieve say, ‘This [Qur’an] is not except a falsehood he invented, and another people assisted him in it.’ But they have committed an injustice and a lie.”
    • “And they say, ‘Legends of the former peoples which he has written down, and they are dictated to him morning and afternoon.’”
    • “Say, [O Muhammad], ‘It has been revealed by He who knows [every] secret within the heavens and the earth. Indeed, He is ever Forgiving and Merciful.’” [Surat al-Furqan; 25:1-6]

— One time, Prophet sat with Al Walid ibn Mughira in the Haram, and Nadr ibn al-Harith again sat with them

  • There were many other people of Quraysh who also were sitting with them.
    • The Prophet started to give dawah, and Nadr started to insult the Prophet. Nadr was very rude & abrasive with the Prophet
  • Allah revealed the following ayat from Surat Al-Anbiya to the Prophet:
    • “Indeed, you [disbelievers] and what you worship other than Allah are the firewood of Hell. You will be coming to [enter] it. Had these [false deities] been [actual] gods, they would not have come to it [the fire], but all are eternal therein [will burn for eternity]. For them therein is heavy sighing, and they therein will not hear.” [21:98-100]
  • When the Prophet recited these ayat, Nadr ibn al-Harith heard this & was left speechless. He was dumbstruck
  • Someone approached Al-Walid bin Mughira. That person, who was a bit culturally aware, told Al-Walid that he has a rebuttal for them
    • “Don’t a lot of you here in Makkah believe that the angels are the daughters of Allah and worship the angels as well? What of the Christian tribes, who say that Isa ibn Maryam is the son of Allah, & the tribes, worship Isa as well? Don’t some of the Jewish tribes say that Uzair is also the son of Allah, & they worship him as well?”
    • Walid confirms, “Yes.”
    • The person replied, “Why don’t you go ask Muhammad about that? I heard him reciting the Qur’an – he talks about these angels & Isa, & how they’re notable people. If he says that everything all you worship will burn in all of eternity, does that mean Isa, who Muhammad says is a Prophet of Allah and these angels will also burn in the fire of Hell?”

— So they brought this up to the Prophet. They think they’ve got Prophet trapped now

  • The Prophet replied, “No, you misunderstand. Everyone or everything, these inanimate objects you worship or anyone else who himself has CLAIMED to be a deity & demanded to be worshiped & the ones who have worshipped these false deities are the ones that will burn. But the good people who have wrongly been turned into deities (like Isa) are not at fault. The troublemakers who have told others to worship Isa (as) will be in the Hellfire.”
  • Allah revealed the following ayat to give further clarification from Surat Al-Anbya:
    • “Indeed, those for whom the best [reward] has preceded from Us – they are from it far removed [from the fire]. They will not hear its sound [the crackling of the fire, or smell the fire], while they are, in that which their souls desire, abiding eternally. They will not be grieved by the greatest terror [the Day of Judgment], and the angels will meet them, [saying], ‘This is your Day which you have been promised.’” [21:101-103]
  • This is how Allah had the Prophet’s back. In another place from Surat Al-Anbiya, Allah revealed the following ayah
    •  “And whoever of them [disbelievers] should say, ‘Indeed, I am a god besides Him’ – that one We would recompense with Hell. Thus do We recompense the wrongdoers.” [21:29]
    • These people argue with the Prophet for the sake of arguing; they don’t even believe what they are saying. They just want to instigate something

— In another narration, when Al Walid bin Mughira was sitting with Quraysh, he said to them, “Is divine revelation going to come only to Muhammad, and not to me, when I’m the leader of the Quraysh? What of Abu Mas’ud, who is also a leader? And Amr ibnu Usaid? Will divine revelation not come to him, as he is one of the great leaders?”

  • The people started talking about this & confronted the Prophet about this
  • Allah revealed the ayah from Surat Az-Zukhruf
    • “But when the truth came to them, they said, ‘This is magic, and indeed we are concerning it, disbelievers.’ And they said, ‘Why was this Qur’an not sent down upon a great man from [one of] the two cities (Makkah & Ta’if)?’”
    • “Do they (the disbelievers) distribute the mercy of your Lord? It is We who have apportioned among them their livelihood in the life of this world and have raised some of them above others in degrees [of rank] that they may make use of one another for service? But the mercy of your Lord is better than whatever they accumulate.” [43:30-32]
  • This is how Allah told the Prophet to ignore people’s foolish arguments & consoled him. Be confident & keep on keeping on.

— In another situation, Akhmash bin Suraikh brought an old decomposed bone to the Prophet & started crushing it. As he was crushing it, he said, “Are you telling me that God is going to bring  this back to life?”

  • Ubay bin Khalaf also brought a bone & crushed the bone, asking the Prophet, “Are you telling me that God is going to bring this back to life?”
  • The next day, Abu Jahl did the same. “Are you telling me your God is going to bring this back to life?”
  • Allah sends down ayat from Surat Yasin to the Prophet:
    • “So let not their speech grieve you [O Muhammad]. Indeed, We know what they conceal and what they declare.
    • Does man not consider that We created him from a [mere] sperm-drop – then at once he is a clear adversary? And he presents for Us as example and forgets his own creation. He says, ‘Who will give life to bones while they are disintegrated?’
    • Say, ‘He will give them life who produced them the first time; and He is, of all creation, Knowing.’
    • He who made you from the green tree, fire, and then from it you ignite. Is not He who created the heavens and the earth able to create the likes of them? Yes, it is so; and He is the Knowing Creator. His command is only when He intends a thing that He says to it, ‘Be,’ and it is. So exalted is He in whose hand is the realm of all things, and to Him you will be returned” [36:76-82]

— One time, the Prophet was making Tawaaf around the Ka’bah.

  • Aswad bin Mutallib, Walid bin Mughira, Umayyah bin Khalaf, Al ‘As ibn Wa’il approached the Prophet. They said, “Ya Muhammad, fine. You win. We’ll worship whatever it is that you worship. [They don’t even say, “We’ll accept Islam”]. And you’ll worship what we worship. So we will be partners! Then we will all be cool with each other.”
  • The Prophet would never consider this ridiculous compromise in the first place
    • These people don’t stand for anything. They just want the Prophet to compromise in his beliefs
    • It’s ridiculous, because the Prophet spent the last 8 years preaching the word of Allah. He sent a 100 from his own sahabahs to Habesha, & spent 3 years watching the starvation of his family members. Did these ignorant people think all of this could be brushed aside if only the Prophet compromised in his beliefs?
  • Allah then revealed Surat Al-Kafirun to the Prophet:
    • “Say, ‘O disbelievers, I do not worship that you worship. Nor are you worshippers of what I worship. Nor will I be a worshipper of what you worship. Nor will you be worshippers of what I worship. For you is your religion, and for me is my religion.’” [109:1-6]
    • Everyone has trouble with difficult people & has trouble with their imaan. That’s why it’s necessary for us to be engaged with the Qur’an & Seerah, so that we can find counsel, tranquility, strength, & confidence in the Qur’an & Seerah, just as it was provided for the Prophet himself

— One time, Abu Jahl overheard the Prophet recite some ayat in the Qur’an about the  Tree of Zaqqum (a thorny tree in Jahannam that the dwellers of Hell will eat out of desperation)

  • Abu Jahl went to the Prophet at the Ka’bah & yelled out loud so that everyone could hear, “Fal nata Zaqqam (he made up a word – turned the noun Zaqqum to verb Zaqqam). Come on everyone,  let’s all go eat Zaqqum for lunch!”
    • This was him mocking the Prophet
  • Allah then sent the following revelation from Surat Ad-Dukhan
    • “Indeed, the tree of Zaqqum is food for the sinful. Like murky oil, it boils within bellies like the boiling of scalding water.
    • [It will be commanded], ‘Seize him and drag him into the midst of the Hellfire, then pour over his head from the torment of scalding water.’
    • [It will be said by Allah], ‘Taste! Indeed, you are the honored, the noble! Indeed, this is what you used to dispute [mock].” [44:43-50]
  • As usual, this is Allah coming to the aid & comfort of His Habib Muhammad
  • As indicative of Allah’s mercy, these terrible verses are followed by the rewards for the righteous

— Abdullah bin Umm Maktum (ra) was a poor blind man who lived with his mother. He had accepted Islam in the early days. He was also one of the muezzins of the Masjid as Nabua

  • The Prophet was sitting with Walid bin Mughira, who wasn’t his usual belligerent self that day. He stopped & started a friendly conversation with the Prophet. “Hey Muhammad, how’s it going?”
    • The Prophet must have wondered what’s wrong with Walid, but said, “It’s good, have a seat.”
  • Walid talked with the Prophet politely, without any hint of malice, so the Prophet was encouraged. “Maybe today’s the day Walid might accept Islam.”
  • Abdullah bin Umm Maktum came by. He’s blind, so he didn’t see either the Prophet or Walid having a pleasant conversation.
    • Abdullah asked the Prophet about some verses of Qur’an. He said, “Please recite some Qur’an to me.”
  • This kind of bothered the Prophet, because as soon as Walid saw Abdullah, he said, “Oh look, here comes one of your people,” and then he walked away
    • The Prophet was just having a good conversation with Walid, but at end of the day Walid is a jerk & arrogant man, so he got up & abruptly left. The Prophet got bothered & wasn’t happy
  • Allah sent an ayat down immediately from Surat Abasa to take care of the Prophet:
    • “The Prophet  frowned and turned away because there came to him the blind man [interrupting].
    • But what would make you perceive, O Muhammad, that perhaps he might be purified or be reminded and the remembrance would benefit him?
    • As for he who thinks himself without need, to him you give attention. And not upon you  is any blame if he will not be purified
    • But as for he who came to you striving for knowledge while he fears Allah, from him you are distracted” [80:1-10]

— For the Prophet, the Qur’an was a huge source of inspiration, tranquility, counsel, and peace for the Prophet to help him navigate through the difficult situations & people in his life

  • The Qur’an serves the same purpose for us as well


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