#SunnahFriday - The Real Muslim

So much has happened over the last few weeks and months; these events are related to a topic I usually do my best to stay away from. Not out of lack of compassion but mostly because I feel people who take part in such discussions have their mind made up and do not relate with an open mind. Also because it feeds the monster they have created, one that constantly tries to push Muslims into a defensive state of us trying to sell such a beautiful religion. This website started off as a blog to educate myself and other Muslims. It has grown into more than that, with people of other faiths reading and leaving feedbacks on just how wrong an impression of Islam they have had all these years. My singular aim is to get the real Islam out to a greater audience and Alhamdulilah that has been achieved that to a certain extent.

I have chosen a Friday to post this as I believe it goes in line with the #SunnahFriday tradition that has been the norm for a few months now. Today’s focus hadith is one which in my opinion does a grand job of demystifying the wrong impression people have about Islam - the sad and ugly impression a few have cast over the billions of people who practice the religion of peace. It has been a while since I have written off the cuff like this but I believe it’s the right time to break my silence on this matter.

The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said: “There should be no harming or reciprocating of harm”

Muslims around the world do their utmost best to follow the Sunnah of the Prophet (SAW). He is the best example to follow. Islam is strictly against violence in any form, it is a religion that frowns on harming and oppressing people. As a matter of fact, an oppressor is cursed by Allah. A Muslim is a model citizen that is always in a constant quest to better himself. The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) was the embodiment of the above hadith. He did not seek revenge, did not return evil with evil but forgave and pardoned those who did the most horrific things to him. I would be giving a few examples.

  • During the earlier years of his Prophethood, Prophet Muhammad (SAW) traveled to the mountain city of Taif close to Mecca to invite them to Islam. He did not get the best of welcomes and was stoned and abused. The people stood on either side of the path and threw rocks until he was injured and covered in blood. At this point, the Prophet uttered a prayer and appeared an angel seeking the Prophet’s (SAW) permission to destroy the city. His reply was:

“No, for I hope Allah will bring forth from their loins people who would worship Him alone, associating nothing with Him.” – Muslim

  • Upon the Prophet’s (SAW) return to Mecca after decades of prosecution, he had the chance to exact revenge. He had a huge army behind him yet the return was peaceful. We must remember that these were the same people who had rebuked, taunted, beat, abused and even interrupted his prayers. They plotted to kill him on more than one occasion and waged many wars against him. He forgave them all including Abu Sufyan and his wife who paid someone to kill the uncle of the Prophet (SAW).
  • The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said: “By God, he is not a believer. By God, he is not a believer. By God, he is not a believer, with whom his neighbors are not safe.”

We have been enjoined to go about peacefully and coexist. Muslims do not go around causing trouble or stirring up arguments.

  • Most would be familiar with the story of the old woman who always threw garbage in front of her house which the Prophet (SAW) had to pass on his way to the masjid. She would also hurl the rubbish directly at the Prophet on a daily basis with no reaction from him. One day there was no garbage in front of the old woman's house and upon inquiry, the Prophet (SAW) got to find out that she will ill. He visited her and took care of her. She accepted Islam after this show of mercy and kindness by the Messenger of Allah (SAW). He could have taken advantage of her weakness and venerability at her time of being ill to avenge but he did not. 

"Keep to forgiveness (O Muhammad), and enjoin kindness, and turn away from the ignorant." - Q7:199

The question now is; if this is the man Muslims strive to emulate, if this is the man whose daily practices have been followed for centuries; how then can anyone who goes against what he stood for be said to be a member of his ummah? A man so kind and forgiven that a verse was revealed for him draw a line - Q9:84. A Muslim would never take the life of his fellow man, a Muslim would never be an oppressor and he would never be the cause of such horrific acts of violence.

My message is a simple one; the real Muslim lives his life following the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and the Qu'ran. And as the above examples shows us, the real Muslim lives his life in a state of peace, self awareness and contentment. A consciousness that leads him to know right from wrong. The real Muslim is tired of being judged and labelled what he is not. The real Muslim wants world peace too. The real Muslim refuses to be tagged a supporter of violence and extremism. The real Muslim wants you to do your homework, to open your eyes and minds and get to know the religion and see it for what it truly is. The religion of peace. 

"You are the best nation produced (as an example) for mankind. You enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and believe in Allah......" - Q3:110

This is a challenge to everyone reading this to be the Real Muslim by following the example set by the Messenger of Allah (SWT) and if you are not Muslim but so happen to be reading this, you can also pick this day to become a better person. The change we want starts within us and eventually reflects on the world.

“History makes it clear however, that the legend of fanatical Muslims sweeping through the world and forcing Islam at the point of the sword upon conquered races is one of the most fantastically absurd myths that historians have ever repeated.” – De Lacy O’Leary – Islam at the Cross Road