15 Nov Hilm (Gentleness).Part2
THE HILM (GENTLENESS) OF THE PROPHET
- Our Prophet, both before and after his prophethood, was the gentlest of people.
This is a quality that he carried throughout his life. God Himself protected the Prophet from ever losing his hilm, and was pleased with the Prophet because of it. God spoke of this in the Qur’an:
“It was by a mercy from God that (at the time of the set- back), you (O Messenger) were lenient with your followers. Had you been harsh and hard-hearted, they would surely have scattered away from about you” (Al Imran 3:159).
- The Prophet never thought to avenge himself for wrongs done to his person.
In addition, he was the hardest to anger, the easiest to please, and the most forgiving of all. When Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, began his prophetic mission to teach people about God’s commands, the disbelievers in the Quraysh tribe leveled every kind of insult and indignity at him. They ridi- culed the Prophet, threatened to kill him, spread thorns on his path, threw excrement at him, and even threw a noose around his neck and tried to drag him by it. Not stopping at this, they called him a conjurer and sorcerer, and said he was possessed; they tried everything they could think of to anger him. But the Prophet endured everything they did to him without reacting.
No one, whoever they may be, would be able to refrain from becoming angry, and thus react and try to respond in kind when insulted or attacked in such a way by others. Yet the Prophet did none of these things. He was extremely calm, patient, and toler- ant. He strove to carry out the responsibility given to him by God. Perhaps this is why he did not respond to the torments he was subjected to.
Someone who heard the Prophet explaining Islam to people in the market place in Mecca related,
“Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, was declaring the Oneness of God, and that those who believe in the One God would be saved. Abu Jahl started throwing rocks at him, and shouting, ‘People, do not listen to this man! He is trying to get you to abandon your religion. He wants to separate you from our idols Lat and Uzza!’ The Prophet refused to acknowledge the instigation; he did not once turn to look at Abu Jahl. He simply continued his duty.”
Another day, the Prophet was going to visit Sa’d ibn Ubada, one of the Companions who had fallen ill. On the way, he encountered a gathering assembled by the ringleader of the unbelievers, ‘Abdullah ibn Ubayy. The Prophet stopped for a while. Ibn Ubayy began to taunt the Prophet, saying arrogantly, “Careful you, your animal is making dust. Get out of here, your animal is bothering us!” The Prophet greeted the group and then began to speak of Islam. Ibn Ubayy, seeing that the people were listening to him, was beside himself. Saying, “If anyone wants to hear something from you he will come to you! Do not talk to us of Islam!”,
he hurled curses at the Prophet. But the Prophet’s adab would not let him respond in kind; he simply continued his address. On seeing this, the great poet ‘Abdullah ibn Rawaha was moved; he stood up and said, “O Messenger of God, come here more often, and speak to us; we love you greatly!” Then a disagreement began between the Muslims and the disbelievers. They started to argue. The Prophet, calm and gentle as always, calmed them down and then departed, continuing on his way.