Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Poverty of Prophet Muhammad

Faqr Fakhri
Poverty is my pride
- Prophet Muhammad

Ali Eteraz writes beautifully worth sharing here:

(...) the abject poverty that afflicted the Prophet Muhammad. Here was a man who was subjected to such a long series of painful episodes, and survived them all so miraculously, that it was almost if God put him here on earth to disprove despair.

That you could lose your parents within your first eight years and still become a man; that you could lose your family and their protectioin and still become a leader; that you could lose numerous sons in that age in which children are the most innocent and still be compassionate; that you could have stones thrown at your head till pools of blood accumulated in your shoes and still not give in to vengeance; that you could have your uncle impaled upon spears and his heart literally eaten and still forgive the killers; that you could sleep on mats of hay and still be regal; that you could be so lonely that rather than sitting in the city circles you had to withdraw to caves and yet still come down with a book like the Quran; in this survival, no, affirmation of life, is a miracle that underlies Islam.

when Prophet Muhammad was the ruler of whole of Arabic, when he had the choice to live a life of opulence and luxury, he chose to live a life of an ascetic in spirit yet performing all the duties of family, society and nation. its recorded that if some wealth came to his possession in the morning, by sunset he would distribute them among the needy. he demonstrated how to live in this world and at the same time above it. such was his model of character. thus to embrace asceticism of poverty both inward and outward is what sufis whole heartedly aspire to live. thus living a simple life not necessarily because of necessity, but by choice is a model of the Messenger of God.

the Prophet used to pray, "O God, grant me life as a poor, cause me to die as a poor and resurrect me in the company of the poor .." His wife asked him why he said that, and he replied: Because the poor will enter the garden of bliss before the rich. Do not turn away a poor man, even if all you can give is half a date. If you love the poor and bring them near you, God will bring you near Him on the Day of Great Resurrection. (recorded in Al-Tirmidhi book of Prophetic tradition)

its worth remembering the beatitudes of Jesus Christ where he said: "Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth."

And Jesus himself declares: ".. I am meek and poor in heart .." (Matthew 11:29)

may Divine peace and blessings be upon both Messengers of God, Muhammad and Jesus. Pin It Now!