Monday, December 24, 2018

The Enduring Legacy of Prophet Muhammad

The Seal of Prophethood

In a Hadith recorded by Imam Bukhari and narrated by Hazrat Abu Huraira (ra), our Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) said, “My similitude in comparison with the other prophets before me, is that of a man who has built a house nicely and beautifully, except for a place of one brick in a corner. The people go about it and wonder at its beauty, but say: ‘Would that this brick be put in its place!’ So I am that brick, and I am the Seal of the Prophets.”

There is no doubt that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is the last brick, perfecting the house of Deen (religion). He was indeed the one who perfected the construction by his advent (coming), for it is through Him that Allah has given us our religion, the final religion and perfected it for us by naming it ISLAM.

The Mission of Prophets and Divine Elects

This brings us to the meaning of a prophet. By way of meaning, a prophet is someone who receives news from the Unseen, i.e. from Allah through the Ruh’il Quddus. He does not see the future, but is informed about important things which shall happen in the future by the will of Allah. He cannot predict any future event without getting revelations from Allah informing him about it beforehand. Therefore, a prophet is one to make prophecies by Allah’s permission and he receives revelations from Allah. ‘Naba’ means news, true news of great importance. In the Arabic terminology, it is not used for any other normal news, like newspapers and media etc. It is used exclusively for such news which is of great importance, especially in the realm (field) of spirituality. And thus, Nabi’ (i.e. prophet) means such a person who is truth-speaking who receives truthful news of great value from Allah (swt) and who conveys it to the people. Therefore, a prophet can bring with the command of Allah, law-bearing news and non-law-bearing ones. It is an appellation to qualify such person who receives from Allah revelations amidst the common people of his era, and who can attain to the proximity of Allah for the salvation of the Deen (religion).

And verily, Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) was the most perfect of all prophets, law-bearing ones and non-law-bearing ones. With his advent, religion and the law of Allah was completed. His touch to the religion of Allah was the most perfect one, for he simply was the actualization of the words of Allah in practice. He was the person, the book, and the spirit of Allah all combined in him. It was thus that he was perfected both as a human being and a prophet.

Moreover, as a Rasul, he came to give the divine message from Allah. Allah sent him as His Envoy, His Messenger and he did just that: i.e. deliver the message. He could not enter the hearts of people to make them accept the truth of Allah. He just brought the message to the people and admonished them so as to correct them and warned them of a great punishment if they ever reject the divine message and take the wrong path.

Therefore, as both a ‘Nabi’ and Rasul’, he was the epitome (i.e. summit or peak) of perfection. No other prophet were and will attain to his degree of perfection and proximity (i.e. nearness) to Allah. He is the first in the rank of honour among all prophets in the sight of Allah. He is the first best (and not second best or third best etc.), and others come after him in ranks, honour and love.

The Lofty Status of the Holy Prophet (sa)

For example, during his spiritual vision and journey (i.e. the Isra and Miraj) when his soul was graced with the highest connection with Allah, it is recorded in the Hadith of Imam Bukhari, and narrated by Anas bin Malik (ra) that though Hazrat Musa (as) earned the love of Allah and the ability to speak to Him directly, but he was ‘painfully jealous’ and weeping to see Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) accede to the highest levels of spirituality or heavens, and got higher and higher, surpassing the level where Hazrat Musa (as) was found, to accede to the presence of Allah.

Hazrat Anas bin Malik reports: “Moses was on the seventh Heaven because of his privilege of talking to Allah directly. Moses said (to Allah), ‘O Lord! I thought that none would be raised up above me’.” (Bukhari).

In another report recorded in Sahih Muslim, Hazrat Anas bin Malik (ra) on the authority of Hazrat Malik bin Sa’saa (ra) reports the Prophet of Allah (pbuh) to have said: “When we travelled on till we reached the sixth heaven and came to Moses (as) and I greeted him and he said: ‘Welcome Oh righteous brother and righteous prophet.’ And when I passed (by him) he wept, and a voice was heard saying: ‘What makes you weep?’ He said: ‘My Lord, he is a young man whom You have sent after me (as a prophet) and his followers will enter Paradise in greater numbers than my followers’.”

Whether Hazrat Musa (as) is on the sixth or seventh heavens, what is important here is that both the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and his true followers shall have a higher status and proximity to Allah than Hazrat Musa (as) himself and his Ummah (community). I repeat, only the true followers of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) shall accede to the nearness of Allah, not those who are Muslims in name, and who do not have any regard for ISLAM.

Divine Proximity for True Followers

The promise of Allah is bound to be accomplished for further in the Holy Quran, in Surah An-Nisa (Chapter 4, Verse 70) He has stated: “And whoso obeys Allah and this Messenger of His shall be among those on whom Allah has bestowed His blessings, namely, the Prophets, the Truthful, the Martyrs, and the Righteous. And excellent companions are these.”

It means that Allah shall always honour the true followers of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and honour them more than the people or nations of past prophets. Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) as the last brick means that he is the new door through which his spiritual progeny shall come to reinforce the religion of Allah, and that religion is no new religion, but it shall ALWAYS be ISLAM.

Each time, ISLAM shall be in danger – like we are seeing nowadays – Allah shall raise someone from his Ummah as a subordinate prophet, an Islamic prophet, a prophet who is a spiritual follower and in obedience to the Holy Prophet (pbuh) to support and reaffirm Islam, to prevent the construction of Deen, of the House of all law-bearing prophets from crumbling down.

This is the superiority which Allah has given to Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) and the true and pious ones from his Ummah, and it is that superiority and divine affection for us which made Hazrat Musa (as) weep during the spiritual ascension of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), when he was between the state of sleep and wakefulness (Kashaf).

Humans and the Unveiling of Divine Countenance

One thing I need to mention here is that though he acceded to the presence of Allah, but he did not see Allah, for no human soul during sleep or semi-sleep can ever see Allah until they die and accede to the station where Allah wishes to unveil Himself before him. Hazrat Aisha (ra) has stated:

If anyone tells you that Muhammad has seen his Lord, he is a liar, for Allah says: ‘No vision can grasp Him.’ (6: 104) And if anyone tells you that Muhammad has seen the Unseen, he is a liar, for Allah says: ‘None has the knowledge of the Unseen but Allah.’” (Bukhari).

Moreover, It is narrated on the authority of Abu Dharr: “I asked the Messenger of Allah (pbuh): ‘Did you see your Lord? He said: (He is) Light (He is veiled by Light); how could I see Him?’” (Muslim).

Therefore, all prophets of Allah, whether law-bearing ones and non-law-bearing ones (and Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) is the last of the law-bearing prophets) see only manifestations of Allah, but not Allah in His actual and real form or BEING. For example, someone may dream that he saw Allah in the form of his father or in the form of light etc. These are simply manifestations of Allah to reassure the believer that He (i.e. Allah) is with that person, and to reaffirm him in his faith in Allah and Islam.

Recognize your fortune

So, my dear disciples, it is an honour for us today to be among the promised ones among the spiritual progeny, the followers of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) to get the golden opportunity through the descent of the Ruh’il Quddus, and the manifestation of this humble self as the Khalifatullah of this age who have come to strengthen Deen-e-Islam and repair the ancient highway leading man to Allah. I have come not to bring another new religion or another new law-bearing Scripture, but I have come in the image of my mentor, my spiritual guide and prophet, Rahmatul-lil-Aalameen (a blessing for all universe) and Khatam-an-Nabiyyin (the Seal of all prophets) to guide you all to Allah safe and sound; all this provided you obey Allah and this humble servant of Allah and submit to the will of Allah and strengthen yourselves physically, morally and spiritually as true Muslims. Insha-Allah, Ameen

May Allah bless you all and keep you ever strong in your faith till your last breath on earth. Ameen.

-'Sirat-un-Nabi' Speech delivered at the historic Noor'ul Islam Masjid, Mathra (Kerala, India) by Hadhrat Muhyi-ud-Din Al-Khalifatullah Munir Ahmad Azim Saheb (atba) of Mauritius on 03 December 2018 ( 25 Rabi’ul Awwal 1440 AH).