In his Haj, nothing could divert the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) attention away from his rituals, or from showing submission and humility before Allah. Standing with his hands raised close to his chest, he privately offered his supplication for extended periods of time. Secondly, all of the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) movements were full of submission and surrender to Allah, Almighty.
He would walk quietly in reverence and tranquility going about his rituals. Jabir (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: “The Prophet (peace be upon him) performed Al-Ifadha in tranquility.” (Al-Bukhari)
Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that as he and the Prophet (peace be upon him) were moving together on the Day of ‘Arafah, they heard loud noises, clattering and roars of camels. The Prophet (peace be upon him) then pointed his whip at the people and said: “Be quiet; haste is no indication of righteousness!” (Tirmidhi)
Doing plenty of good deeds
Not only did the Prophet (peace be upon him) enjoined good, he (peace be upon him) was also keen on doing the same during the Haj. This is manifest in his performance of all the recommended Haj rituals.
He performed Ghusl (ritual body wash) and wore perfume before assuming Ihram, marked and garlanded the sacrificial animal, and frequently recited the Talbiyah aloud until he (peace be upon him) had cast the Jamaratul-’Aqabah.
He also started Tawaf as soon as he entered the House, walked briskly in Tawaf, touched the two corners of the Ka’bah, offered two Rak’ahs of Tawaf behind Maqaam Ibrahim (Ibrahim’s station), supplicated Allah on the hills of Safa and Marwah, ran in the middle of the valley, supplicated upon touching the two corners and while throwing pebbles at the Jamaraat. (Paraphrased from Al-Bukhari and Muslim) There are many other acts that he (peace be upon him) performed.
Moderation and equanimity
Islam encourages moderation and censures exaggeration. In fact equanimity was the most significant attitude of the Prophet (peace be upon him) in the Haj. He (peace be upon him) abhorred exaggeration. He (peace be upon him) did neither too much nor too little. Two acts of worship can be stressed in this regard. Firstly, he (peace be upon him) adopted a wholesom middle course between his acts of worship and his responsibility as the leader of the Muslims. However, he (peace be upon him) did not neglect his duty to his wives and his household who needed care and affection. Secondly, he (peace be upon him) also took equal care of his body and soul.
This is a very important point, as the awe-inspiring surroundings of the Haj may compel many people to observe the spiritual and entirely forget the physical side of their being.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) however, took very good care of his body. For example, on Tarwiyah Day he (peace be upon him) moved closer to Mina in order to be near ‘Arafah (Sahih Muslim); slept during the nights of ‘Arafah and Muzdalifah (Al-Bukhari); took breakfast on the Day of ‘Arafah (Al-Bukhari); but did not offer supererogatory prayers. (Sahih Muslim)
He (peace be upon him) stayed in a dome made from the camel’s hair erected especially for him, moved between the sacred sites (Al-Bukhari), and performed some of the Haj rituals riding on camel’s back (Muslim). Furthermore, he even had someone who served and helped him. (Ibn Majah)
Giving up worldly life
The Prophet (peace be upon him) renounced the present life and rejected all that was not needed for the Hereafter. There are countless examples of his attitude of looking down upon the worldly life. Listed are but a few: He (peace be upon him) used an old, shabby camel saddled with a piece of velvet hardly worth four dirhams (silver currency). He (peace be upon him) allowed Usamah Ibn Zayd (may Allah be pleased with him) to ride behind him on his camel’s back from ‘Arafah to Muzdalifah, and allowed Al-Fadhl Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) to ride behind him from Muzdalifah to Mina. (Al-Bukhari)
HE is the role model, we take our rites of Haj from him – the Prophet of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. His educating and leading the pilgrims, as well as caring for his wives and household did not prevent him from worshiping Allah, or from showing his absolute submission to Him. This attitude took various forms, and here are some of the most significant examples:
Tawheed (Islamic monotheism) is the first fundamental principle of Islam that the Prophet (peace be upon him) affirmed and fostered. This was very much evident in his conduct while performing Haj. It was in his recitation of Talbiyah (saying Labbayka Allahumma labbayk), which is now like a symbol of Haj. It means that the act of Haj is offered to Allah, and Allah alone, without associating any partners with Him. The Prophet (peace be upon him) continued to recite Talbiyah from the moment he began the ritual, and until he had thrown pebbles at Jamratul-’Aqabah (Aqabah stone) on the Day of Sacrifice (i.e. Eid day).
Moreover, the Prophet (peace be upon him) observed strict devotion to Allah in all his deeds. He always asked Allah to help him avoid hypocrisy and showing-off. Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that he heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say: “O Allah, make my Haj (pilgrimage) free of hypocrisy and showing-off.” (Saheeh Muslim)
While he was on the hills of Safa and Marwah, the Prophet (peace be upon him), supplicated to Allah as narrated by Jabir, “The Prophet (peace be upon him) began by ascending As-Safaa until the Ka’ba was visible to him, then he faced Qiblah and said ‘Laa ilaaha illAllah, Allahu Akbar’ (There is no god worthy of worship but Allah, Allah is the greatest) and said, ‘There is no god worthy of worship but Allah, the One, there are no associates to Him; He is the Master of the universe, to Him we give thanks, He is the Omnipotent; there is no god worthy of worship but Allah, the One… ‘He repeated this three times until he reached Al-Marwah, where he did the same as he did on As-Safa.” (Saheeh Muslim)
The Prophet (peace be upon him) supplicated Allah on the Day of ‘Arafah saying as narrated in an authentic Hadith, “The best invocation is performed on the Day of ‘Arafah, and the best supplication ever offered by me or by previous prophets is: ‘There is no god worthy of worship but Allah, the One, there are no associates to Him; He is the Master of the universe, to Him we give thanks, He is the Omnipotent; there is no god but Allah, the One.’” (Sahih Muslim)
Repudiating the polytheists and their acts
In many of the Haj rituals, the Prophet (peace be upon him) insisted on acting differently from the polytheists and on following in the footsteps of our revered Patriarch Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him). This attitude culminated in his rejection of their actions in the sermon he delivered on the Day of ‘Arafah. “All Jaahiliyah (pre-Islamic) traditions lay trampled under my feet,” the Prophet (peace be upon him) declared. (Sahih Muslim)
Some of the most important rituals that the Prophet (peace be upon him) insisted on changing are as follows:
Talbiyah: The polytheists used to associate other gods with Allah when they said “Except one associate; he is yours; you own him and whatever he owns.” (Al-Bukhari)
The Prophet (peace be upon him) made Tawheed pure, and cast away the association of other gods with Allah, repudiating such practice.
Another example of the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) insistence on acting differently from the polytheists is seen in his stopping with the pilgrims at ‘Arafah, unlike the Quraish who used to stop at Muzdalifah, saying: “We do not perform Al-Ifadah (departure) except from Haram.” (Al-Bukhari)
Supplication and humility before Allah
Supplication (Du’a) has a special status in Islam as it aims at expressing total submissiveness, surrender and humility to Allah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Supplication is worship.” (Abu Dawood)
He would supplicate Allah, the Almighty, while in Tawaf, and while standing on the hills of Safa and Marwah. He also made lengthy supplications on the Day of ‘Arafah, riding on his camel’s back, raising his hands close to his chest as if he were an humble slave begging for Sadaqah (charity). He would remain in that condition from the moment he had chosen the spot at which he would stop after Salah (prayer) until sunset. He also did the same at Al-Mash’ar Al-Haraam (the Sacred Monument) in Muzdalifah right after he had offered the Fajr (dawn) prayer and almost until sunrise. (Al-Bukhari)
On the Days of Tashreeq, and when he had thrown pebbles at the first two Jamarat (ramy), he would face Qiblah, raise his hands, and make a prolonged supplication. (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
[Quran 4:34] “Men are responsible for the welfare of women since God has given some (of you) more wherewithal than others, and because they must spend of their wealth (to maintain the family). Therefore pious and devout women safeguard the private matters that God would have them safeguard. As for those (women) from whom you fear aggressive defiance, caution them (to piety). (If they remain unmoved by your words), then leave them alone in their beds, and finally (if they continue in their aggressive defiance), then separate from them. However, if they accede to you (by abandoning their aggressively defiant behaviour), then you have no (legitimate) grounds to act against them (any further), and God is full of knowledge and
The Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) has commanded:
[Sunan Abudawud, Book #11, Hadith #2138] “Narrated Mu’awiyah ibn Haydah: I said: Apostle of Allah, how should we approach our wives and how should we leave them? He replied: Approach your tilth when or how you will, give her (your wife) food when you take food, clothe when you clothe yourself, do not revile her face, and do not beat her.”
[Sunan Abudawud, Book #12, Hadith #2220] “Narrated Aisha, Ummul Mu’minin: Habibah daughter of Sahl was the wife of Thabit ibn Qays Shimmas He beat her and broke some of her part. So she came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) after morning, and complained to him against her husband. The Prophet (peace be upon him) called on Thabit ibn Qays and said (to him): Take a part of her property and separate yourself from her. He asked: Is that right, Apostle of Allah? He said: Yes. He said: I have given her two gardens of mine as a dower, and they are already in her possession. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Take them and separate yourself from her.”
1. Taqwa is a means by which a believer performs righteous deeds and Taqwa, causes the righteous deed to be accepted by Allah.
Allah says: “O you who believe! Have Taqwa (fear) of Allah and always speak the truth. He will direct you to do righteous and correct actions and will forgive you your sins and whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger has
indeed attained a great achievement.” [Soorah al-Ahzaab (33): 70]
and: “Verily Allah accepts only from those who are the muttaqoon (those who posses Taqwa).” [Soorah al-Maaidah (19): 71-72]
2. Taqwa makes one deserving of Allah’s Pleasure and Love. Allah says: “Verily, the most honorable of you in the Sight of Allah is that (believer) who has Taqwa.” [Soorah al-Hujurat (49): 13]
and: “Whoever fulfills his pledge and has Taqwa of Allah much, then indeed, Allah loves those who are muttaqoon (those who posses Taqwa).” [Soorah Aal-Imraan (3): 76]
3. Taqwa causes sins to be forgiven and increases rewards. Allah says: “And whoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him. He will remit his sins from him, and will enlarge his rewards.” [Soorah at-Talaaq (65): 5]
4. Taqwa keeps one steadfast on the Straight Path and protects him from deviation.
Allah says: “O you who believe! Have Taqwa of Allah. He will give you a Furqaan (criterion to judge between right and wrong).” [Soorah al-Anfaal (8): 29]
Imaam Ibn al-Katheer (rahimahulla) said in his Tafseer, ‘Ibn Abbas, as-Sudde, Ikrimah, adh-Dahhak, Qataadah and Muqaatil, Ibn Huyyan, all said about ‘Furqaan’ that it means a way out (from difficulty).
Mujaahid added: ‘A way out from difficulty both in this world and in the Hereafter.’ In a narration from Ibn Abbas, he said: “It means, ‘Salvation’ and in another narration from him ‘being helped.’ Muhammad Ishaaq said that it means: ‘A criterion to judge between truth and falsehood.’ This explanation from Ibn Ishaaq is the most general of what has proceeded and it is a necessary consequence of it. Since whoever has Taqwa of Allah by obeying His commands and abandoning what He has prohibited, will be given the ability to recognize truth from falsehood.
Many of the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) companions belonged to the poorest and weakest strata in society. In Makkah, some of them were slaves or individuals attaching themselves to tribes to which they did not belong. As such, they had no privileges. In Madinah, his companions included people of all social ranks, but the Muslim community was in the process of establishing its foundation in the midst of a very hostile environment. Armies were raised to crush it, and economic siege was imposed on it. Yet the Muslim community was a close-knit community, with a bond of brotherhood in faith uniting all its members. The Prophet was keen to nurture this bond and help it to replace old tribal and family loyalties.
The Prophet was fully aware that ideas should be translated into practical action, and ties based on faith should have practical manifestations. Hence, it is not enough for people to speak of the new bond of Islamic brotherhood without the practical manifestations that cement this bond so as it would be felt as a reality. Therefore, the new Muslim society must be exemplary in its manners and social values and traditions. None other than the Prophet could establish these. God states that the Prophet provided guidance in all matters. In matters of religion, his example must be followed. In the areas that pertain to ordinary human life, the Prophet’s practice is always good to follow.
The Prophet was exemplary in his politeness and social habits. At the time, people mostly sat on the ground. When he sat with his companions, or with others, in the mosque or anywhere else, he never put his legs forward. He turned with his full face towards anyone who spoke to him, so as to make the speaker feel that the Prophet was fully attentive to what he said. He was the first to greet anyone who met him on the road. If he passed by a group of boys playing in the street, he would greet them and may stop to speak to them.
We see in our world that despite all the refinements that human society has developed, when a leader or a ruler is with his people, his manner is that of the one who is always in command, always holding the initiative. If he is attending a function, he decides when he leaves, paying little attention to what might have been prepared or might have remained. If he is visiting others, he rises to signal the end of the visit. The Prophet never did this. He would not rise until he has taken leave of his host.
He took meticulous care of his cleanliness and hygiene, so as not to cause any offense. He never blew air over any food or drink. If it was too hot, he would wait a little until it has cooled down. If he needed to sneeze, he would cover his mouth. He always used perfume, and stated that the two things of the human world that he loved were perfume and women. This was in a society that had long abused women. By saying this, he stressed that women must be well treated by Muslims. He frequently used a toothbrush to keep his teeth clean and to ensure that his mouth smell was always pleasant. He recommended his companions to use a toothbrush after meals and on waking up. If he woke up during the night, the first thing he did was brush his teeth. Urging his companions to maintain cleanliness, he told them to have a bath at least once a week, preferably on Fridays before going to the mosque for their prayers. He said: “Take a bath on Friday, even if you have to buy the water at a dinar for a cup.”
– by Adil Salahi