Seerah Episode 54. The Undeniable Truth

— The Prophet used to embrace the disenfranchised people of his society

  • He was instructed by Allah to never cast out people who remember Him morning and evening. These people included the poor, outcasts, & the downtrodden of society

— The Prophet used to visit a slave named Jabbar from time to time

  • Jabbar was a Nasrani (Christian) man who belonged to one of the Quraysh families. He was treated very badly by his owners, so the Prophet would visit him, console him, embrace him, & make sure he’s alright
    • The visits weren’t preachy; the Prophet would just visit these kinds of oppressed people time to time & break bread with them
  • The oppressed people (slaves, poor) noticed the Prophet’s kindness over time. “This man has nothing but good in him, so what he has to offer me must be good as well.”

— Some time passed with the Prophet visiting slaves. One day, the Prophet was walking in Makkah

  • Some Quraysh leaders go, “See Muhammad? He goes & sits with those Christians. Those Christians have got these weird beliefs. They have one God, & prophets, & angels, afterlife, Jahannam, & Jannah. Muhammad also talks about that stuff a lot.”
    • The Quraysh leaders started propaganda, claiming that the Christian slave & the Prophet sit together & come up with these strange ideas, & then they go around spreading this nonsense. The Quraysh try to convince others that Jabbar & the Prophet scheme together
  • Allah said in the Qur’an, “They (the Quraysh) say that it is a man (Jabbar) who teaches him [Muhammad]. The tongue, the language of that man, that they try to attribute to Muhammad is an ajamin (the slave doesn’t speak Arabic – it’s ajamin). This Qur’an, this divine scripture is the Arabic tongue that is very clear, very eloquent, & very concise Arabic tongue. It is a masterpiece of the Arabic language.”
    • So the Quraysh’s claim was very shallow & bogus to begin with; their lies were easily seen through. The Qur’an is in the Arabic tongue, when Jabbar barely spoke it
    • It was also impossible for the Prophet to be getting revelations & his message from this Christian slave. Jabbar’s own faith was Christianity, but by no means was he a scholar, so the Prophet couldn’t go to Jabbar to get theology, spiritual foundations, or legal structure about religion

— The Prophet had a practice of waking up in the middle of night & recite the Qur’an in the Tahajjud namaaz. He would recite Qur’an out loud often times

  • There were 3 individuals amongst many who ran into one another. This account is told by Abu Sufyan, who was one of the 3. Before Abu Sufyan accepted Islam, Abu Jahl, Akhnas bin Shuraik, & Abu Sufyan were leaders of the Quraysh & were in the head of the opposition against the Prophet & his message
  • These 3 Quraysh leaders would sneak up to a window/door of the Prophet’s house & listen through the window/crack of door to the recitation of Qur’an. It captivated them
  • Abu Sufyan would be outside the Prophet’s door for several hours at a time (at night) listening to the Qur’an. He would stay there until morning came, when he would run back home so that no one would see him
    • The whole time they were slandering the Prophet & persecuting Muslims during daytime, they’d listen to the Prophet’s Quran recitation at night

— One night, Abu Sufyan left the Prophet’s home in middle of night & along the way he ran into Abu Jahl & Akhnas bin Shuraik

  • All 3 oppose the Prophet & Islam
  • They’re all standing there, & had that awkward moment. They’re trying to figure out what they’re doing there at that moment
    • “What are you doing here?”
    • “Me? What are you doing here?”
    • “What is he doing here?”
  • One of them finally fessed up, “I came here to listen to Muhammad recite the Quran. You know just checking on what he’s talking about these days.”
    • “Me too.”
    • “Same”
    • They save a little face & try to justify to one another, “Yeah, we have to keep up with the things Muhammad says. We have to keep track & know what he’s going to talk about with people tomorrow.”
  • They said to one another, “We can’t keep doing this. If someone else sees us & find out that we listen to Muhammad, then other people will tell others. They’ll tell others that it’s okay to listen to Muhammad & accept his message.”
    • The 3 Quraysh leaders then made a pact to not come back outside the Prophet’s home to listen to him recite the Qur’an

— The next day, Abu Sufyan came back to the Prophet. “I need to know. I need to listen.” That’s the seed of imaan taking root in his heart

  • He listened to the Prophet for a little while & as Abu Sufyan was going back to his house, he ran into Abu Jahl & Akhnas bin Shuraikh again
    • “What are you doing here?”
    • “What are YOU doing here?”
  • Abu Jahl said, “We gotta put an end to this. This is not good.”
    • “Alright, alright, we’re not coming back here.”

— On the third night, Abu Sufyan, again being restless, went to listen to the Prophet’s Qur’an recitation again. He thought to himself, “There’s no way the other guys are going to come tonight. They’ve already been busted twice.”

  • Abu Sufyan listened to the Prophet for a bit, then left. On his way home, Abu Sufyan ran into other 2 yet again
    • “Again?”
    • “We have to stop.”
    • “It’s gone way too far. No more of this. Nobody can come here again.”
  • Again, the 3 made a pact
    • After that point, they didn’t visit the Prophet too often. Occasionally, the 3 would separately listen to the Prophet’s Qur’an in the middle of the night, but at the very least, they didn’t run into each other

— But Abu Sufyan narrates that he just could not leave it be. He still itched to listen to the Qur’an

  • Akhnas bin Shuraik also felt the same way. He went to Abu Sufyan & asked, “What do you think about what we hear?”
    • Abu Sufyan replied, “I can tell you this: some of what I hear, I understand & I know. But there’s some stuff I hear him reciting is so beyond me & the human realm, I don’t fully grasp it & I don’t definitely know where it comes from. But I know this – it’s not from Muhammad. He’s not making this stuff up. There’s a lot of what he recites that just baffles me.”
  • Akhnas bin Shuraik then went to Abu Jahl with same question, “What do you think of what Muhammad recites?”
    • Abu Jahl replied, “I can tell you this much. Banu Amr (us), we’ve competed with Banu Abd Munaf for a very long time. We always try to outdo one another, in terms of fame, prestige, influence, wealth, & political power.  We’ve always been in competition. They throw a festival, we throw a bigger & better one. They spend some money, we spend more money. They do this, we do that. All of a sudden, they’ve come telling us now that one of them is a prophet. He’s got this unbelievable Qur’an that he recites to us. Based on purely what I hear, we are justified to accept it, because it’s divine. But if we acknowledge what Muhammad has to say, that he’s a Prophet, then we have to be able to provide the same thing to maintain our social standing. We won’t be able to do that. So the best thing to do is not accept his message. This discussion is off the table. No one is believing in him. Go home & get this out of your system.”
  • These same people try to discredit the Prophet & push people away from the Prophet, but they contradict themselves (their own propaganda) by listening to the Prophet recite the Qur’an & then discuss his Qur’an
    • The only reason they don’t accept Islam is due to their pride & to maintain their social standing
    • They’ve set into the role of “Whatever Muhammad says, we say the opposite”
  • This is around the 11th year of Nubuwwah. The Prophet is around age 51
    • Many Muslims in Makkah keep their imaan secret, because part of standard life in Makkah was that the persecution & torture of Muslims

— 23 years of Nubuwwah is split in 2 periods:

  • Makkan (13 years)
    • 1st stage: First 3 years were Private preaching
    • 2nd stage: Open preaching in Makkah
    • 3rd stages: Profound experiences in the life of the Prophet that served as a transition from 2nd to 3rd stage (upcoming)
  • Medinan (10 years)


Link to next episode

One thought on “Seerah Episode 54. The Undeniable Truth

  1. Pingback: Tafsir Surah al-Alaq Ayat 8 – 19 | Tafsirsunnah's Blog

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