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Siyar Al-Nabi Lessons-14: The Best Of Gıfts

Written in Turkish by Mutlu BİNİCİ

Translated into English by Yakup ARICIOĞLU

  The Stunning Guest of Mount Nour

Our Prophet (sas) whose name and himself is beautiful, exalted by those on the earth, and in the heaven, was the owner of the blessed life that our Lord (swt) swore on and had the best morality ever. He was a sparkling light in the pitch-dark of illiteracy.

  Our Prophet (sas), who has the best morality and the most supreme heart, was feeling sorry for what was happening around him. The idols in Ka'bah, the persecution of people, and immoralities were giving him a deep grief. He had to do something and break loose from the oppressive ambiance of the city.

  He (sas) started to escape from people and be alone since he was thirty five. He was going to Mount Nour (Light), which is 5 km away from his house, and living in seclusion in the Cave of Hira that is situated under the summit of mount. His (sas) grandfather Abdul Muttalib and the renowned Hanif Zeyd ibn Amr had previously taken refuge in this cave as well. In the following years, time of his solitude in the cave had increased, and he had begun to spend the whole month of Ramadan on Hira. 

   Rasulullah (sas) would feed the poor when they come to his presence in the cave. After ending up the itikaf, he would first circumambulate the Ka’bah and then go home to his family. After making the provisions ready, he would go back to Hira. He sometimes took his wife to the cave with him.[1]

  Hira-The Name of Seeking

  Rasuli-Akram (sas) did not have any worldly problem by the time he was choosing to be away from people. He was an honest and successful merchant of the Quraysh, beloved and venerated person by the entire city. He was married to the superlative female, and had a happy home. Why would someone live in a deserted cave when he has a happy home and high reputation? What was our Prophet (sas) seeking in this dark cave when he quit his home and most importantly his comfort?

  He had refused the vile and nefarious lifestyle that ignorance exacted him. He never accredited the idols in Ka'bah and the life being shaped around them. Idols made out of stones and trees could not be God.

  Muhammad (sas) knew these, and was thinking over the creation of universe, essence of existence, life and death, the owner of everything (Allah the Almighty), and seeking the Truth. All in all, the meaning of Hira was seeking.

  Being alone would be necessary for a human being to get rid of some worldly matters, and give some time to himself in order to question and freshen up, in brief, find himself. He who finds himself would surely find his Lord (swt). Who would a man have by him besides Allah when he came to this world alone and will pass away alone? His heart would satisfy only by thinking of sublimity of Allah (swt) and worshipping Him.

  In that case, it would be essential for the ones who live in crowds, and actually have no one around them to turn back to Allah (swt) in the cause of peace and happiness.

  Our beloved Prophet (sas) was meditating in Hira, worshipping his Lord (swt), and he was able to watch Ka'bah, the glorious house of Allah because the cave was fronting onto the Ka'bah. There had to be a qiblah of tafakkur (meditation) and seeking, and this qiblah, indeed, was Ka'bah the memory of Ibrahim (as).

  The Prophet's Dream Becomes Righteous

  Aisha (ra), the mother of believers and the top of wisdom, describes those days:

  “The beginning of the revelations to the Apostle of Allah (sas) was in the form of true dreams. He did not have a dream but it came to him like daybreak.”[2]

  The prophethood was an arduous mission. Our Prophet (sas) was familiarized this mission through dreams. The prophets would first receive the messages, orders and prohibitions in their dreams; and the revelation would be sent when their hearts are assured.[3] Their eyes would fall asleep, but hearts would be awake.[4] The prophets’ dreams were part of a revelation.[5] Ibrahim (as) had dreamt of sacrificing his son Ishmael (as).[6] The last messenger of Allah (sas) says:

  “A good dream of a righteous man is one of forty-six parts of prophethood.”[7]

  The visionary messages to Rasulullah (sas) lasted for six months.

  People dream according to the way they live and see whatever they give value to in their dreams. Bright and nice dreams can solely be seen by those who are true-hearted and righteous.

  Rasulullah (sas) was desiring to be alone, and he was finding nothing as charming as solitude. He would be hearing voices such as “Peace be upon you O messenger of Allah!" when he left from Makkah and headed for a calm place where there was no one. Then, he would turn back worriedly and see nothing but trees and stones.[8] All beings were saluting him; the time was imminent.

  The Best Night-Better Than a Thousand Months

  Late one Monday night, probably, on the twenty-seventh of Ramadan [9], when our Prophet (sas) was contemplating in the cave of Hira, the greatest event ever occurred. The archangel Jibreel came to the cave and said to the Prophet (sas), “Read!”

  “I cannot read,” Rasulullah (sas) replied. The angel then took hold of him and pressed him until he could not endure it any longer. The angel let him go and said once again, “Read!”

  “I cannot read,” Rasulullah (sas) replied. The angel took hold of him a second time and pressed him until he could not endure it any longer. After letting him go, the angel said, “Read!”

  “I cannot read,” Rasulullah (sas) repeated for a third time, the angel took hold of him and pressed him until he could not endure it any longer. The angel released him and said, “Read in the name of your Lord who created man from a clot. Read! And your Lord is the most Bounteous. He Who taught by the pen. Taught man what he never knew.”[10] These were the first verses of Qur'an, and this night was the most valuable one.

  Qur'an is the word of the Lord of the Worlds and the best of words. The counsel of our Lord (swt), a cure for our hearts, guides and enlightens our path. The revelation is condescension and compliment of Allah (swt) to all beings. It is an esteem and a helping hand of Allah (swt) to countless beings who are to be protected from the Hellfire. The revelation is love, mercy and the greatest blessing of Allah (swt) to His slaves.

  Invaluable Words

  When the angel went away, the words he heard, as though were written on the Prophet's (sas) heart. He (sas) was in fear by trembling. When he returned home, he said “Cover me! Cover me!” to Khadijah (ra). Khadijah covered him and helped him calm down. He related what had happened in the cave, and said, “I fear for myself.”

  It was pretty normal for the Great Prophet (sas) to fear and worry because he had never thought of being a prophet and nothing like this had even once come to his mind. Al Qur'an Al Karim lets us know his mood at that time as follows: “And you were not expecting that the Book would be conveyed to you, but [it is] a mercy from your Lord.”(Qasas 86) You did not know what the Book or faith is…”(Shuraa 42/52)

  After listening joyfully to what Rasulullah (sas) related, Khadijah (ra) consoled his spouse and said: “Never! By Allah, Allah will never disgrace you; You keep good relations with your kith and kin, tell the truth, help the poor and the destitute, serve your guests assist the deserving calamity-afflicted ones.”[11]

  These words express our Prophet's (sas) life before his prophethood best. The real personality of someone can only be known by his spouse. It is because people might act differently in public than how they act at home. The real faces of those who attempt to be seen as pure-hearted and merit holder by others but actually have none of these characteristics show up at their home. For this reason, the utterance of the one who knows our Prophet (sas) best is of a great importance.

  The Mother of Women of Heaven

  Our mother Khadijah (ra), who said those about her beloved spouse, is the most noble woman both in this world and in Hereafter. The reason is that she showed patience and advocated him all the time when our Prophet (sas) was seeking for the Truth and living in seclusion. She congratulated him by saying: “I have good news for you, I hope you will be the Prophet of these people.”[12] We should think of the wives of Prophet Nuh (Noah) and Lut (Lot) (as), about how they took the sides of villains and how hostile they were to their prophet husbands, just to understand Khadijah's (ra) dignity.

  What Is Sent to You Was Sent to Moses”

  Khadijah (ra) did not find her own words enough and then took her husband to her cousin, the old venerable Waraqa bin Nawfal. He knew Hebrew and was familiar with the Gospels, having left paganism for Christianity in the pre-Islamic era. After our Prophet (sas) narrated Waraqa what had happened in the cave, Waraqa said, “The angel (Jibreel) that was sent to you is the same angel that Allah sent to Musa (Moses). I wish I were young and could live to see the day your own people drive you out of this city.”

  “Will they drive me out?” the Prophet (sas) asked in amazement. Rasulullah (sas) thought that it made no sense to be hated by his own people who loved him so much and even called him Al-Ameen.

  “Yes,” replied Nawfal. “Never has a man brought such as what you have without meeting hostility.” He subsequently stood up and kissed the last Prophet (sas) on the forehead.[13]

  Khadijah (ra) had asked Addas, the Christian slave of Utbe ibn Rebia, about Jibreel and got the same answers in response to her questions.[14]

  The Revelation Ceases

  After Waraqa relieved our Prophet (sas) with his words, he (sas) was wishing the incident to repeat and to see the Angel of Revelation again. However, the revelation was not sent for a long time. He was frequently going to the cave of Hira where he saw Jibreel first, but a long time passed without any further revelation. This hold-up is called “Fatratu'l Wahy (The Interruption of Revelation)”. Our beloved Prophet (sas) was truly distressed that he thought his Lord (swt) took offence and abandoned him. Non-appearance of Jibreel gave him a deep agony. The fear and excitement coming with the revelation had replaced with the worry and anguish coming with the interruption. The reason of revelation's delay was to reassure the Prophet (sas) and increase his longing for the revelation. Our Prophet (sas) was getting ready to the arduous burden of prophethood. The revelation was not subject to him, but it was the other way around. There are different rumors on how long the interruption of revelation lasted changing between fifteen days and three years. But, it surely did not last for a long time.[15]

  O You Who Covers Himself

  In one of these sad days, the chosen Prophet (sas) heard a voice when he was returning from the cave of Hira. He raised his head and saw the Angel of Revelation. The angel was on a throne set between the earth and the heaven. He (sas) was so scared that hurried home to Khadijah (ra) and said to her: “Cover me! Cover me!” Whereupon the first verses of Surah Al-Muddaththir were sent down:

  “O you wrapped in garments! Arise and warn! Magnify your Lord, and your clothing purify! Shun idols and false worship! And give not a thing in order to have more. And be patient for the sake of your Lord.”[16]

  Muhammad (as) arose and the greatest revolution in history started off.


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  [1] İbn Hişam, Sire,I,236; Mustafa Fayda, “Muhammed”,DİA;XXX,410.

[2] Buhâri, Bed’ü’l-Vahy 3.

[3] Şamî, Sübülü’l-Hüda, II, 228.

[4] İbn Sa’d, Tabakât, I, 171.

[5] Belazurî, Ensabu’l-Eşraf, I, 256.

[6] Saffât 37/102.

[7]Buhâri, Tabir 7;  Müslim, Rüya 6.

[8] İbn Hişam, I,234.

[9]Muhammed Hamidullah, İslam Peygamberi, I,74;  İsmail Yiğit-Raşit Küçük, Hazreti Muhammed, 87.

[10] Alak 96/1-5.

[11] Buhâri, Bed’ü’l-Vahy 3.

[12] İbn Hişam, I,238.

[13] Buhâri,Bed’ü’l-Vahy 3; İbn Hişam,I,238.

[14] Belazuri,Ensabu’l-Eşraf,I, 111.

[15] Kasım Şulul, Son Peygamber,175-176; İbrahim Sarıçam, Hz. Muhammed,84.

[16] Müddessir Sûresi 74/1-7.


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