Our Prophet: The most sublime, the most great
The esteemed Prophet
Maulana Abul Hassan Attari Madani
Last month’s issue referred to how the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم distributed generously and how this topic can be addressed from four different perspectives:
1. Being the owner of divine treasures and having complete authority over them.
4. Not hoarding goods.
The first two perspectives have already been covered. The third perspective is discussed below.
3. Giving generously
Hundreds of books have been written on the generosity the Prophet ّٰصَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم. After Allah Almighty, the Prophet ّٰ صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم is most generous. Sayyiduna Abdullah Bin Abbas رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُ ّٰ states regarding the extent of his generosity: ‘The messenger of Allah صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ was the most generous amongst the people. His generosity would be at its peak when he used to meet Jibraeel in the month of Ramadan. Jibraeel عَـلَيْـهِ الـسَّـلاَم would come every night of Ramadan and recite the Quran with the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ. The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ was more generous in doing good than a fast wind.’
The endless giving of the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ would benefit non-Muslims too. Sayyiduna Safwan Bin Umayyah رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ (before accepting Islam at the battle of Hunayn) asked for goats that had filled a valley between two mountains. The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ gave all of them to him. Sayyiduna Safwan returned to his people and said: ‘O my people! Accept Islam! I swear by Allah that Muhammad [ صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ] is so generous that one no longer fears poverty.’
Sayyiduna Safwan رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُalso said: ‘On the day of Hunayn, the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ began giving me wealth even though I detested him. He صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ continued to give me to the extent that he became beloved to me.’ The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ showed incredible generosity during the battle of Hunayn. He صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ gave away 100 camels to many people.’
Speaking of the generosity shown on the day of Hunayn, Imam Ahmad Raza Khan رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَـلَيْه states: ‘The distribution of the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ on that day was greater than the generosity shown by kings in their entire lifetime. Goats large enough in quantity to fill a valley were given away by him. Crowds came towards him, forcing him to move back. When all the wealth had been distributed, a Bedouin (an Arab who lives in rural areas) took hold of the Prophet’s shawl and pulled it off with such force that it left a mark on his blessed body. Upon this, the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمstated: “O people! Do not be hasty. By Allah, you will never find me stingy.’
There are also instances where the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ gave away the very clothing that he was wearing. Sayyiduna Sahl Bin Sa’d رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُّٰ narrates that a woman came with a shawl and said: ‘O Messenger of Allah! I have woven this together and brought it for you to wear.’ As the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ required it, he kept it. When he صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ came to the companions, he was wearing it as a lower garment (Tahband). A companion رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُّٰ saw this and said: ‘What a great cloth this is; allow me to wear it.’ The prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ said okay. After some time, he left the gathering, and when he returned, he folded the cloth and sent it to the companion. The other companions رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ told this companion that what he did was not right, as he knew that the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ did not turn away anyone who asked from him. The companion رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُّٰ replied: ‘I swear by Allah that I only asked for this cloth so that it may be used as my shroud [for blessings] when I die.’ Sayyiduna Sahl Bin Sa’d رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُّٰ stated that the cloth was used as that companion’s shroud.
Other examples of the Prophet’s generosity include him purchasing something from someone and then gifting it back to the seller or somebody else. During the return journey from the battle of Zaat al-Riqa, the camel of Sayyiduna Jabir Bin Abdullah رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُّٰ was lean and weak; it would fall behind the rest of the convoy. Seeing this, the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ hit the camel with a stick. As a result, it began to travel so fast that it went ahead of the other companions’ healthy camels. Slowing down his camel, Sayyiduna Jabir رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُّٰ came in line with the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ and began to talk. The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ said: ‘O Jabir! Will you sell this camel to me?’ Sayyiduna Jabir رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُّٰ wanted to give it as a gift, but the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ insisted and purchased it for one Aoqiyyah [historical unit] of gold. After reaching Madinah, Sayyiduna Jabir رَضِیَ اللہُ تَعَالٰی عَنْہُ came the next day to give the camel to the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ. He tied it outside Masjid al-Nabawi. The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ saw the camel and asked, ‘Who does this camel belong to?’ He was told that it belonged to Sayyiduna Jabir رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ. The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ called him and said: ‘O the son of my brother, take the camel with you; it is yours.’ He then said to Sayyiduna Bilal رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ: ‘Go with Jabir and give him one Aoqiyyah.’ Sayyiduna Bilal gave him one Aoqiyyah for the camel and a bit more. Sayyiduna Jabir stated: ‘I swear by Allah, my wealth increased for as long as it remained with me.’
Likewise, on one occasion, the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّمّٰ purchased a camel from the Leader of Believers Sayyiduna Umar Farooq رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ and then gifted to Sayyiduna Umar’s son: Sayyiduna Abdullah Bin Umar رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُما.
Wah kiya jood-o-karam hay Shah-e-batha tera,
nahi suntan hi nahi maanghne waale tera,
Dhaare chalte hain ata ke woh he qatra tera,
taare khilte hain sakha ke woh he zarrha tera,
Aghniya palte hain dar se woh hai baara tera,
Asfiya chaltay hain sar se woh he rasta tera
(To be continued in the next issue.)
Sahih al-Bukhari, vol. 1, p. 9, Hadith 6
 Muslim, p. 973, Hadith 6,021
 Sharh al-Shifa al-Qaari, vol. 1, p. 257
 Sahih al-Bukhari, vol. 3, p. 118, Hadith 2,821
 Malfuzaat-e-A’la Hazrat, p. 122, Al-Bukhari, vol. 2, p. 260 Hadith 2,821
 Sahih al-Bukhari, vol. 4, p. 54, Hadith 5,810
 Seerat-e-Ibn Hishaam, p. 384
 Sahih al-Bukhari, vol. 2, p. 23, Hadith 2,115