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A Day With Our Prophet

Written in Turkish by Mehmet Yaşar KANDEMİR

Translated into English by Hayat Yakup ARICIOĞLU


  Rasuli Akram would be awakened by rooster crowing in the last third of the night, at dawn. He would straighten up by wiping the sleep from his eyes which are worth the world and make his duaa by reciting, “Alhamdu lillahil-lathee ahyana ba'da amatana wa-ilayhin-nushoor” which means ‘All praise be to Allah, who gave us life after killing us (sleep is a form of death) and to Him will we be raised and returned' He sometimes would look up to the sky of Medina and recite the last eleven verses of Surah Ali Imran which utter that in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day are signs for those of understanding. He would put his shirt on, starting on his right arm and brush his pearly teeth with his miswak to start with. He would never neglect to cleanse his teeth.

  He would make another duaa by reciting, “Allahumma inne aa'oozuu bika minal-khubthi  wal-khaba-ith" which means ‘O Allah. I seek refuge in You from the male female evil and Jinn's' when he (sas) got close to a place where ablution might be invalidated. He would say, “Ghufranak" which means ‘O Allah, I seek forgiveness and pardon from You' while moving away from that place.  (Tirmidhi, Purification 7; Abi Dawud, Purification 28) 

  He (sas) would take ablution and start to his tahajjud prayer. He would perform nine, eleven or thirteen units of Salah and the witr as its last unit. His night prayers were not like ours. He would read long chapters while standing on his feet (in qiyaam), stay in prostration, when he felt himself closest to his Rabb, for minutes. After a lively and enthusiastic worship, he (sas) would rest again due to his overtired, blessed body. He would also go to the Cemetery of Al-Baqi and pray for his companions (ashab). He would never neglect this practice which he gave much importance to. Sometimes even Jibreel (as) would come and wake him up, remind him that he was to go to Al-Baqi.

  The muethin would stop by Rasulullah's (sas) house twice towards morning. In the first one, he would notify that the salah time arrived, hereupon our Prophet (sas) would get up again, perform two units of sunnah, and rest by lying on his right side. After the second arrival of the muethin, he (sas) would go to the masjid and lead his ashab, who were waiting for him, in the morning prayer. (Bukhari, Tahajjud 23; Muslim, Travellers 121, 122) He (sas) would suggest to straighten the rows before the prayers, sometimes walk between the rows and touch the shoulders of ashab so as to straighten the rows when it is required. (Muslim, Prayers 122-128)

  The morning prayer would be performed before the weather clears up, the women would go back their home as quiet as they got to the masjid, and the men, who were not in a hurry, would sit on their spot to be with the Prophet (sas). Our Prophet (sas) would have a conversation with his ashab while sitting on the mihrab till sunrise. Some awkward things done in the age of ignorance would be mentioned sometimes, ashab would laugh at that time, and our Prophet (sas) would smile as was his custom. (Muslim, Mosques 286) Sometimes he (sas) would ask his ashab the dreams they had that night, listen to them and interpret their dreams. If there was no one to see a dream, he would tell his own dream. Rasuli Akram (sas) would see tips of significant occasions, for this reason, give much importance to them. He (sas) would say that the dream of a mumin is one of forty-six parts of prophecy. (Bukhari, Interpretation of Dreams 2, 4, 48)

  The fortunate muslims of the era of bliss would live through a beautiful event in the blessed morning times which we commemorate with deep longing now. Medinan muslims, presumably the female companions, who knew well that the Lord of the World was an irreplaceable treasure for them and had an itch for obtaining a strand of hair of him (sas) and sprinkling their faces with a few drops of ablution waters which could find the opportunity to kiss his blessed skin as much as they wanted, would hand either their servants or children over a bowl and send them to Rasulullah (sas). And he (sas) would warm the cockles of their heart by immersing his blessed hands, which his ummah was panting for smelling and kissing, to those waters. He would not refuse them even in the quite cold days, not wriggle off the hook, immerse those blessed hands to the icy waters. (Muslim, Virtues 75)


  Rasuli Akram (sas) would later go back to his home, recite bismillah while going in, take off his shoes starting from his left, and greet the household. He would say that it saddens shaytaan to recite bismillah while going in a house and makes him warn his men by saying, “You can no longer stay here.” (Muslim, Drinks 103) While entering his home, he would say “O Allah I ask you for the hayr entrances and exits, in the name of Allah (swt) we enter and in the name of Allah we leave and upon our Lord we place our trust.” As soon as he enters his home, he would use his miswak again. (Muslim, Purification 43, 44; Abi Davud, General Behavior 103).

  Then he (sas) would ask his wife if there was any food available. If there was none, he would fast. (Muslim, Fasting 169, 170) His supplies often depleted due to his sharing what he had with the poor, and there would be times when no food was cooked in the house for weeks. Aisha (ra) said that they would be content with water and date or with the meals their neighbors gave. Sometimes there would be nothing but barley bread and vinegar in the house. The Sultan of the Prophets would say “How good a condiment is vinegar” and dip his bread into vinegar.

  He (sas) would be consent with a plate of food and sometimes with a few dates. He would never neglect saying bismillah before starting to his meal and alhamdulillah after finishing it.

  He (sas) would help his wives in every respect when he was at home. If necessary, he would sweep the house, milk the animals, darn his clothes, in short, he would do his own job. (Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, Musnad, VI, 256) He (sas) would ask them how they are in every morning, learn about their needs, and then he would procure them. While getting out of the house with this intention, he (sas) would first put on his right shoe and then the left. He would recite, “Bismillahi tawakkaltu alallahi la hawla wala quwwata illa billah" which means, ‘In the name of Allah, I place my trust on Allah, there is no power (to do good) and no might (to abstain from evil) except with the assistance of Allah). He (sas) would say that the one who gets out of a house by saying this would be under the divine protection, and shaytaan will stay away from him. He at times would recite different duaas. He (sas) would say salaam, shake hands with the ones he came across on the road. He (sas) would say that it is vital and a good deed for the muslims to salaam to each other.

  He (sas) would never neglect late morning prayer which is also called “Awwabin”. He (sas) would perform this nafilah prayer sometimes with two and sometimes four or eight units according to the situation within the time from sunrise to thirty minutes before the zawaal time. (For more information see, Riyad as-Salihin Peygamberimizden Hayat Ölçüleri, V, 354-356)

  When the weather gets hot well enough, he (sas) would take a midday nap (qaylula). There were also times when he (sas) would do this in the house of his friends and the ones he loves and venerates.


  He (sas) would spend a considerable time in Masjid an-Nabawi. He would meet and converse with the Muslims there, answer their questions and advise those who ask for it. He (sas) would gather everyone there when a significant announcement to be made, distribute the booty, determine the delegates and troops to be sent, commandments, governors and officers, who would be responsible for collecting alms, to be appointed, teachers to teach the religion, welcome the foreign committees, entertain his guests.

  He (sas) would ask about the sick, visit them at their houses. He (sas) would give much impotance to reconcile those who are estranged from one another. Even if their houses were far away, he would take a few people with him and have them make peace with each other.

  Companions, especially the female ones, would want Rasulullah (sas) to perform two units of prayer in their houses so as to fecundate their houses and invite him (sas) with the excuse of offering him food. And he (sas) would not hurt anyone, perform his prayer wherever they want, if the prayer time entered and that place was far from Masjid an-Nabawi, he would be the imaam and lead those who were at home in congregation.


  The Splendid Prophet (Zishan) would go to his wife in the evening whose house he (sas) would stay the night. His other wives would gather there as well. Sometimes he (sas) would teach them what they should know, sometimes he would talk about the exemplary life stories of those who lived in the pre-Islamic era, and sometimes talk about daily life and joke with them. It would please our mothers to be with him (sas) in their capacity both as his wife and his ummah.

  If he (sas) did not have something important to deal with after performing the Isha prayer, he would clean his teeth, which were whiter than snow, sit on his bed, recite ikhlas and mu’awwidhatayn (surah falaq and nas) blow them into his hands and then wipe them over his face and body. He (sas) would slowly lay on his right, place his cheek, which is reminiscent of rose petal, to his fragrant palm and recite some duaas. He (sas) would sometimes briefly say “Allahumma bismika amutu wa ahya” (Bukhari, Invocations 7, 8) which means “In Your name O Allah, I die and be resurrected.” Sometimes, he (sas) would recite longer duaas and then release himself to the arms of sleep which he deemed some sort of death.

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