Saturday, September 30, 2006

Muhammed (PBUH) - post Pope Benedict's lecture

Muslims all over the world regard Muhammed peace and blessings of Allah be upon him with reverence and respect. Muhammed is the role model for Muslims in all their transactions, wordly and spiritual.
In fact, the Faith of a Muslim is incomplete or void without that respect or love for the final prophet whom Quran describes as the Mercy for the entire Universe.
Narrated by Anas: The Prophet said, "None of you will have faith till he loves me more than his father, his children and all mankind." (Sahih Bukhari Volume 1, Book 2, Number 14:)

After the acceptance of the Oneness of the God Almighty, love and respect for the final Messenger is one of the main foundations on which a Muslim builds his life. But for the open and transparent life of Muhammed pbuh, Muslims would not have been able to comprehend the Quran.

Does the Muslim of today really love Muhammed? A superficial examination will show that Muslims love Muhammed. The violent protests against the Danish cartoons, burning the effigy of the Pope, the shouts and violence in the streets were all for the sake of the prophet. But what is to love a great character, what is the real essence of loving somebody more than your father, your son or anybody else? Simply put, it would be to follow the path of the great man, to build one's character and live the modest, gentle and noble life Muhammed has preached and practised.
We sent thee not, but as a Mercy for all creatures. (21:107)

And thou (standest) on an exalted standard of character. (68:4)

Narrated by Masruq: "We were sitting with 'Abdullah bin 'Amr who was narrating to us (Hadith): He said, "Allah's Apostle was neither a Fahish (one who speaks bad words) nor a Mutafahhish (one who speaks obscene evil words to make people laugh), and he used to say, 'The best among you are the best in character (having good manners)."'" (Sahih Bukhari Volume 8, Book 73, Number 61:)

How gentle is the Muslim of today? What virtue and nobility does he hold? Why do Muslims get provoked so easily? Haven't the Messenger of Allah been rebuked by his own people?
And to say: What! shall we indeed give up our gods for the sake of a mad poet? (37:36)

Did Muhammed or his companions ever strike in retribution against such accusations? Muslims should ponder on these questions. The Muslim society should have countered the situation with more dignity and in a more civilized manner as is expected out of them. The path that Muslims ought to have taken is that of the prophet they respect - to invite people with wisdom and good intent and to cooperate in all that is good and to forbid evil.

The Pope's reference of the medieval Byzantine emperor may or may not represent his picture of Muhammed pbuh. But the time Pope chose to deliver the lecture was untimely. There is no doubt that the Pope has his right to speech. But highest office of the Roman Catholic Church should have been more careful with a statement that was sure to hurt the feelings of a large population.

A better understanding among people about the culture, history, religion and civilization of others around them would help them to live amicably as children of Adam pbuh.

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