FORM ONE IRE NOTES
Read [Q: 36:2]; [Q: 85:21];[Q: 17:9]
Meaning of the Quran
The Quran is a religious book used by Muslims all over the world as a book of guidance. Most of the
world religions have their specific books which they use for reference. Do you know any religious
books used by members other faiths? Can you mention any of them? Just as every religion has its
own religious book, Muslims have the Quran as their main source of reference and they have a duty
to learn, understand and constantly refer to it. As a Muslim, have you read the Quran? Muslims
believe that the Holy Quran is the last book to be revealed by Allah. It is because of its important
position in the Islamic faith that throughout our course we shall be using the Quran as our immediate
source of reference.
Can you remember the meaning of the word Quran from your Islamic Religious Education in Primary school?
This word comes from an Arabic root qara’a which means “to read or to recite.” Quran in Arabic
therefore literally means recitation or something that is continuously recited. It is equivalent in
meaning to qira’ah, as both come from the same verb ‘qara’a.’
This name is specifically mentioned in the text of the Quran as a reference to itself in several places. From the verses you have read, you will learn that the Quran has been referred as a book of guidance, a book full of wisdom and a Glorious. Read the following verses:
In Islam the word Quran is defined as the divine speech of Allah Subhanahu Wa Taala (S.W.T), sent down upon the last Prophet Muhammad Peace be Upon Him (P.B.U.H), through the Angel Jibril Aleihi Swalatu wa Salaam(A.S) to human kind. Since its revelation the Quran has remained the same without being distorted.
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Other Names of the Quran
Do you know that the Quran is referred to with other different names? Mention some of these names. For the names you have mentioned, it can be seen that some of the names of the Quran have been referred to in the Quran itself while others are derived from the functions of the Quran. Among these names are:
Furqaan (criterion) “Blessed is He Who sent down the Criterion to His servant, that it
may be an admonition to all creatures.” [Q: 25: 1]
Nadhir (warner) “Verily this Quran Doth guide to that which is most right (or stable), and
giveth the Glad tidings to the believers who work deeds of righteousness, that they have a
magnificent reward.”[Q: 17:9]
Rahma (mercy) “A guide and a Mercy to the doers of good”[Q: 31:3]
Tanzil (revelation) “Verily this is a Revelation from the Lord of the Worlds.”[Q: 26: 192] Dhikr (reminder) “We have without doubt, send down the message; And We will assuredly
guard it (from corruption)[Q: 15: 9]
Kitab (The book) “We have revealed for you (O men) a Book in which is a message for
you: will you not then understand.”[Q : 21:10]
Hudan (Guidance) “We gave Moses the book, and made it a Guide to the children of Israel,
(commanding): “Take not other than Me as disposer of (your) affair.”[Q:17: 2:5]
All these names reflect one of the various aspects of the revealed words of Allah. Other
names include Nur (Light), Majid (Glorious), and Mubarak (Blessed) Bashir (Announcer),
among others. Can you mention the other names of the Holy Quran that have not been listed
- a) Ulumul Quran
The term Ulum means ‘a science.’Itrefers to the detailed scientific study of a subject. If you look at
the various subjects you are offered in Form one, you will notice that each of them has a different approach of studying it.These approaches are what we refer to as Ulum (theScience).The Quran, being a wide subject area of study also has its unique features that must be studied in a particular way. Therefore, Ulumul Quran is a scientific study that includes a variety of fields related to Al –
Quran such as it’s:
Collection and compilation.
Order and arrangement of suras.
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Translation of the Quran (tafsir).
Reasons for the translation of the suras ( Asbaabu Nnuzul) Characteristics of language
Style of writing and theme
Recitation (Tajweed) among other
We are going to look at one of the above areas in our next discussion.
Need for the revelation of the Quran.
In life everything has a reason and a purpose for its being, just as we have a purpose for coming to school. Why do you think the Quran was revealed to humankind? Revelation of the Quran came at a time when there was ignorance and the socity was full of social vices, a period referred to as Jahiliya. Someof the reasons for revelation of the Quran are as follows:
- The earlier scriptures were tampered and interfered with by man thus losing their
authenticity. Hence the revelation of the Quran was to correct the wrong message.
- The Quran was given to Prophet Muhammad, the seal of the prophet with a universal
message unlike the other books which were sent to particular generations at specific time. For example The Torah (Taurat) was sent to the Children of Israel through Prophet Musa (A.S) while Zabur was sent to the followers of Prophet Daud.
Read the following two verses from the Holy Quran:
Almighty Allah (S.W.T) Says:“To the Thamud people (We sent) Salih, one of their own
brethren: He said: ‘O my people! Worship Allah; ye have no other god but Him.Now has
come unto you a clear signfrom your Lord! This she camel of Allah is a sign unto you…”
Almighty Allah (S.W.T) Says:“To the Ad people, (We send) Hud, one of their own brethren: He said: ‘O my people! Worship Allah! You have No other god but Him. Will you not fear (Allah)?”[Q: 7:65]
- To fulfill Allah’s promise as well as prophesies of the other earlier revealed scriptures on the
coming of the Quran and that of prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H).
Almighty Allah (S.W.T)Says:“And remember, Jesus, the son of Mary, said: ‘O children of
Israel! I am the messenger of Allah (sent) to you confirming the law (which came) before
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me and giving Glad Tidings of a messenger to come after mewhose name shall be
Ahmad.But when he came to them with clear signs, they said, ‘This is evident sorcery.”[Q:
- To narrate and summarizestories and events of the earlier generation in order to offer
teachings, lessons, warnings and guidance to shape community.
Almighty Allah (S.W.T)Says:“There is in, their stories,instructions for men endued with
understanding.It is not a tale invented,but a confirmation of what went before it-A detailed exposition of all things,and a guide and a mercy to any such as believe.” [Q: 12: 111]
- Believe in One True God: The most important topic mentioned throughout the Quran is the
belief in the One, True God. God informs us that He has no partner, no son, no equal, and
that none has the right to be worshipped except Him alone. Nothing is comparable to God
and none of His creation resembles Him. The Qur’an also rejects the notion of attributing
human qualities and limitations to Allah (SWT).
Almighty Allah (S.W.T) says, “And your god is One God. There is no god but He, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.” [Q 2:163]
- Rejection All False Gods: Since Allah alone is the only One worthy of worship, false gods
must be rejected. The Quranalso rejects the notion of attributing divine qualities to anyone or
anything other than Allah.
Almighty Allah (S.W.T) Says: “And worship Allah and associate none with Him…” [Q:
- To remind us of the Day of Judgment:This Holy Quranreminds us that everyone will taste
death and will be held accountable for all their actions and sayings:
Almighty Allah (S.W.T) says: “We shall set up scales of justice for the Day of Judgment, so that not a soul will be dealt with unjustly in the least…”[Q: 21:47]
- Fulfilling the Intended Way of Life: The purpose of life is to worship Allah alone, and live
one’s life according to the way of life prescribed by Allah. In Islam, worship is a
comprehensive term that includes all actions and sayings (whether private or public) that
Allah loves and is pleased with. Therefore, by doing what Allah commands, a Muslim is
worshipping God and fulfilling his purpose in life.
Almighty Allah (S.W.T) says, “I have only created Jinns and men, that they may serve
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Revelation is the divine communication of Allah (S.W.T) to his creatures. In this communication, Allah (S.W.T) either uses the Arch Angel Jibril or any by other methods which shall be studies in Form Two. An example of this communication is when Allah (S.W.T) revealed to the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) the first five verses of Sura al-Alaqa through Angel Jibril. Refer to [Q: 96:1-5]
The above paragraph shows us thatthe Almighty Allah (S.W.T) communicates to his Prophets in the form of revelations. Allah (S.W.T) says in the Holy Quran that;
“It is not fitting for a man that Allah should speak to him except by inspiration, or from behind a veil, or by sending of a messenger to reveal, with Allah’s permission, what Allah will; for He is most High, Most Wise.”[Q: 42:51] From the verse we have readwe see the Arch Angel Jibril acting as an intermediary between Allah (S.W.T) andthe prophets as the bearer of the revelation.Angel Jibril undertook the following duties in the revelation of the Qur’an:
- a) The role of Angel Jibril
- He lowered the Quran from Lauhil Mahfudh (well preserved tablet), the seventh heaven to
Baitul- Izza; the lowest heaven.
- He lowered the Quran from Baitul-Izza to earthand revealedit in portions to the prophet
throughout his 23 years of prophet hood.
- He taught the prophet how to recite the Holy Quran correctly. He would
- He assisted the prophet in the order and arrangement of the Quran. He used to appear before
the prophet at the beginning of every month of Ramadhan and the prophet used to recite all
the chapters while Jibril would guide him on the order and arrangement.
5. He played an intermediary role between the Almighty Allah to the prophet (P.B.U.H).
6. He assisted the prophet in memorizing the Quran during revelation; he would only leave after
the prophet had grasped the verses.
- Assisted the prophet in interpreting and understanding the QuranHe was the comforter of the
prophet because revelation was a difficult experience.Aisha (R.A.) reported thatAl – Harith
bin Hisham asked Allah Apostle (P.B.U.H) how the divine inspiration was revealed to Him.
Allah’s Apostle replied; “sometimes it is revealed like the ringing of a bell, this form of
inspiration (wahyi) is the hardest of all and then this state passes off after I have grasped
what is inspired. Sometimes the Angel comes in the form of a man and talks to me and I
grasp whatever he says.”
What are the other duties that Angel Jibril played in the life of the prophet apart from revealing the
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b)REASON WHY THE QURAN WAS REVEALED IN PORTIONS.
We have just learnt that Arch Angel Jibril lowered the Quran from Baitul-Izza and revealed it in portions. What do you think are the reasons why the Quran was revealed in portions? Let us consider the following points:
- To address the prophet continuouslyin order to strengthen his heart.
Almighty Allah(S.W.T) says:
“You and those who disbelieve say “why is the Quran not revealed to him all at once?” but it is like that in order that we may steady your heart with it, and I have arranged its component parts in an orderly, consistent manner.”[Q: 25:3]
(It is) a Quran which we have divided (into parts from time to time) in order that you might recite it to men at intervals: We have revealed it by stages.”[Q: 17:106]
- The process of revelation was a very difficult experience considering human ability and
limitations; therefore it was revealed in portions to ease the task.
- To provide room for spiritual growth and development for the prophet and his companions.
- To progressively implement the sharia of Allah(S.W.T) that is providing continuous
- To make it easy for the believers to understand and apply the rules of the Quran.
- To make itsmemorization easier because the Arabs chiefly relied on memory to preserve
Allah says (S.W.T) “(These are) the ones who wait and watch about you, if you do gain a
victory from Allah, they say: were we not with you? But if the unbelievers gain an advantage over you, and did we not guard you from the believers?” [Q: 4:141]
- Dealing with problems as they arise whenever a new happening emerges the Quran was there
to provide the necessary solutions and answer. Example of this is when the Almighty Allah
“And they ask you about Dhul Qarnayn tell them I will read to you a report.”[Q: 18:83]
- An indication of the true source of the Quran as it was revealed in a period of 23 years
without any contradictions.
The Almighty Allah says (S.W.T):“Won’t they contemplate the Quran if it had come from
other than Allah; they would have found in it many contradictions?” [Q: 4:82]
SURAT UL FATIHA
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Al-Fâtiha is the first sûrah (chapter) of the Quran, and was one of the earliest portions of the Quran
revealed to the prophet Muhammad by the angel Jibril. The word ‘Fatiha’ comes from the Arabic
root verb ‘Fataha’ which means an opening, beginning or commencement. Therefore it is referred to
as “Fatihat ul Kitab” (the opening chapter of the Book) or simply Surat ul Fatiha (The Opening
Chapter). The idea of opening or beginning is significant in several ways: first, this is the opening
verse of the Quran, secondly, this is said to be the first complete sûrah that was revealed to the
Prophet, but more importantly this name also symbolizes the fact that the grace of Allâh has opened
the doors of Life to us and that as we begin to live our lives in harmony with the ways of Allâh, the
heart truly begins to open, thereby allowing us to begin to allow the Divine Presence of
Allah(S.W.T) to consciously manifest openly through our daily lives, and thus, it is we that have
been opened by His Power.
It is also called ‘sab al mathani’ .i.e. the seven ayahs as these are seven ayahs that no equivalent of them has ever been sent to the previous prophets before. It is called ‘Umm ul Kitab’ i.e. ‘the mother of the whole book’ because it encompasses the theme of recognition of Allah, belief in Him and worshipping Him only and genuinely.
Let us now look at the Arabic transliteration and meaning of its verses.
Bismillāhi r-raḥmāni r-raḥīm
1:1 In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
Al ḥamdu lillāhi rabbi l-’ālamīn
The r herisher and ,hraise and thanks be to Allah 1:2Sustainer of the worlds,
Ar raḥmāni r-raḥīm
,Most Merciful ,Most aracious 1:3
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Māliki yawmi d-dīn
.Master of the aay of Judgement 1:1
Iyyāka na’budu wa iyyāka nasta’īn
worship eou alone we 1:1 and You alone we ask for help.
Ihdinā ṣ-ṣirāṭ al-mustaqīm
:auide us to the straight path 1:6
Ṣirāṭ al-laḏīna an’amta ‘alayhim ġayril maġḍūbi ‘alayhim walāḍ ḍāllīn
1:7 The path of those on whom you have bestowed your Grace, and not the path of those who earned your anger, nor of those who went astray.
Teachings of the surah
- Allah is the most Gracious and most Merciful.
- We should praise Allah for all the favors He has bestowed to us.
- He is the controller and overall judge of everything during the Day of Judgment.
- He is the only one worth of our devotion so all our prayers should be directed to Him.
- Whoever needs any help should seek divine intervention of Allah.
- Man should ask for Allah’s guidance to the path of righteousness.
- The path of righteousness is a favor from Allah(S.W.T).
- Man should shun all evils to avoid the wrath of Allah. The worshipper is reminded not to
- Mankind should follow the teachings of Allah (S.W.T) in order to avoid His anger.
10.The recognition of the oneness of Allah brings us closer to Allah and keeps us far from Iblis.
Importance of the sura
- Sura tul Fatiha brings us closer to Allah through the words of praise contained in it.
- It is a supplication (dua) that the prophet recommended to be usedoften.
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- It is the opening chapter of the Quran.
- It’s the foundation of faith.
- It is the mother of the Quran.
- It is one of the pillars of prayers.
- It’s one among the surahs that no other prophet was given except Muhammad only.
Surat Al-Fīl (The Elephant) – ليفل ا ةروس(Q 105)
Historical back ground to the revelation of Suratul Fiil.
Suratul Fiil derived its roots from the incident of the elephants during the period of the birth of the Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H).
The term Fiil refers to the elephants mentioned in the first verse of the Sura. These elephants were used in the army of Abraha Al Ashram who was governor of Yemen on behalf of the King of Ethiopia. He was sent to go and destroy the Al-Kaaba.
Abraha built a shrine at a place called Sanaa and had wanted the Arabs to perform Pilgrimage at the shrine instead of the Kaaba which they refused. He became furious and decided to send an army to go and destroy the Kaaba.
We shall now look at the meaning of its verses and their transliteration.
Bismillahi rrahmani rraheemi
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.
Alam tara kaifa faala rabbuka bi as-haabil fiil
105:1 Have you (O Muhammad) not seen how your Lord dealt with the companions of the Elephant?
Alam yaj’al Kaidahum fii tadhlil
105:2 Did He not make their treacherous plan into misguidance?
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Wa-arsala alaihim twairan abaabila.
105:3 And He sent against them birds in flocks,
Tarmihim bihijaa-ratin min sijiil
105:4 Striking them with stones of baked clay,
Fajaa’lahum ka’asfinm ma kulin
105:5 Then did He make them like an empty field of stalks and straw, (of which the corn) has been eaten.
Teachings of Suratul Fiil
There are several lessons that can be learnt from this sura as follows;
- Al-Kaaba is protected by Allah.
- Allah is in position to destroy theplans of anybody who intends to harm others.
- Allah is very powerful and sees everything.
- No creature can fight the might of Allah
- Material possession of a man cannot defeat the Allah’s property.
- Mankind should rely on Allah for anything because Allah protects.
- Allah does not allow evil to flourish.
- Allah gives protection to the righteous
- The wrong doers will always be punished by Allah.
- No one can prevail against Allah
- Allah has the ability to end a person’s pride and arrogance.
- Allah wanted tohonor the birth of the prophet (P.B.U.H).
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Surat Al-`Aşr (The Declining Day) – رصعلا ةروس (Q 103)
The early Muslims called it Al-`Asr. Also, in most of the books dedicated to explaining the Quran (tafsir), this name is given to the surah.
The majority of scholars hold that it was sent in the Makkan Period at the early stages of Islam where the Muslim population was small. The surah consists three verses, making it the shortest chapter in the Quran but summarizes all the teachings of Islam because of its vast meaning. Imam Shafi commended that Suratul Asr would have sufficed all the other Surahs of the Quran if they had not been revealed.
We shall now look at the meaning of its verses and their transliteration.
Bismillahi rrahmani rraheemiميحرلا نمحرلالالهمسب
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.
103: 1By Al-‘Asr (the time).
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Inna al-insana lafee khusrin
103: 2Verily! Man is in loss,
Illa allatheena amanoo waAAamiloo alssalihati watawasaw bialhaqqi watawasaw bialssabri
103: 2Except those who believe (in Islamic Monotheism) and do righteous good deeds, and
recommend one another to the truth (i.e. order one another to perform all kinds of good deeds (Al-
Ma’ruf)which Allah has ordained, and abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds (Al-
Munkar)which Allah has forbidden), and recommend one another to patience (for the sufferings, harms, and injuries which one may encounter in Allah’s Cause during preaching His religion of Islamic Monotheism or Jihad, etc.).
Teachings of the Surah
- The surah starts with an oath where Allah swears by the time (Asr) because it is only Allah
(S.W.T) who has the sole right to swear by anything because everything belongs to Him.
- It affirms great loss for those who reject aod’s message after it reached them correctly, and
for those who accepted it but failed to live according to it. Loss means losing Allah’s
blessings and favors for the unbelievers.
- Those excluded from the state of loss include the believers, those who perform righteous
- It encourages one to follow the truth and enjoin one another to be patient.
- They are also be committed to the truth of Islam.
Suratul Nasr(The Divine Support) – رصنلا ةروس (Q110)
The Sura is called Suratul Nasr because it is a word that appears in the first verse of the chapter.It literally means help. And here it refers to Allah’s help that caused the conquest of Makkah.
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This Sura was revealed after the conquest of Makkah. It was the time when many people were embracing Islam, thus the Sura was to remind the Prophet and the Muslims believers at large to consider the victory from Allah only. The victory in which multitudes of people from different tribes embraced Islam was the victory from Allah (S.W.T)this is believed to be the last surah given to Prophet Muhammad and a sign to his approaching death.
Meaning and transliteration of Surat An-Naşr
Bismillahi rrahmani rraheemiميحرلا نمحرلالاله مسب
Itha jaa nasru Allahi waalfathu
110:1When the victory of Allah has come and the conquest,
Waraayta alnnasa yadkhuloona fee deeni Allahi afwajan
110:2And you see the people entering into the religion of Allah in multitudes,
Fasabbih bihamdi rabbika waistaghfirhu innahu kana tawwaban
110:3Then exalt [Him] with praise of your Lord and ask forgiveness of Him. Indeed, He is ever
Accepting of repentance.
TEACHINGS OF SURATUL NASR
This surah has the following teachings
It recognizes Allah as the only source of help and victory.
It is a sign of victory when people are seen accepting Islam in multitudes. For any victory(help) people must glorify the praises Allah.
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heople should glorify Allah’s name and also ask for forgiveness. They should also seek
Allah’s forgiveness with confidence, as he is the one who accepts people’s repentance.
Suggested study Questions and Activities
Answer the following Questions in your I.R.E revision exercise book.
- State the lessons Muslims can learn from Suratul Fiil.
- Define the following term Ulumul Quran.
- Discuss the need for the revelation of the Quran
- What are the teachings of surah Asr?
Narrate the story of Abraha Ashram in relation to Sura al Fiil.
The literal meaning of hadith is news, statement, report, stories or narrations.
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Technically, the term hadith refers to the prophetic sayings, reports, statement which came forth
from the prophet’s gems or mouth. It also includes the prophet’s action and deeds.
The term hadith is sometimes used to refer to Sunnah although there is a difference between the two as follows:
Differences between Hadith and Sunna
This is what the prophet said or what he taught
Is what the prophet kept quiet about or approved
It is the prophet’s interpretation of the Quran
Is the prophet’s treaties and declaration
Is the prophet’s guidance on how to behave towards others
This refers to what he did or his actions
Is the way in which he conducted the affairs of the Ummah.
It is his actual reading of the Quran
Is the implementation of those treaties and declarations
Is how he related to other people
This is the prophet’s instruction on how to Refers to the demonstrationsand howhe
worship conducted the religious acts.
EVOLUTION OF HADITH
The term evolution has been used to refer to the origin, beginning or emergence. Therefore, evolution of Hadith traces the origin and gradual development of hadith
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It can best be looked into by studying the drivers of evolution. These are the factors that made the Prophet to come up with the volumes of hadith and sunnah Muslims today rely on as a significant code of reference after the Quran.
There are four ways in which contributed to the evolution of hadith:
- Through the prophets own initiative
- As a response asked by his companions
- As a demand of circumstances
- As an interpretation of the Quran
The prophet’s initiative
The prophet was devoted to teaching the MuslimUmma about the right way. He would come up with an issue of which he felt that there was need for the Muslims to know about. In this case he would talk to the Muslims to address it.
One instance is illustrated by the hadith below:
Abu Hureira (RAA) narrates that the Prophet (P.B.U.H) used to say (in supplication), “O Allah! Set right for me my religion, which is the safeguard of my affairs. And set right for me the affairs of the world wherein is my living. Decree the hereafter to be good for me. And make this life, for me, (a source of) abundance for every good and make my death (a source of) comfort to me and protection against every evil.”(Muslim)
This is an example in which the prophet took an initiative to teach the Muslims the dua they need to recite.
“Whoever speaks in the Jum’a while the Imam is delivering the khutba is like a donkey who is carrying books, and for he who tells him to be quiet, there will be no (reward for his) Jum’a prayer. “Related by Ahmad)
The objective of this hadith is to teach about the importance of keeping quiet and attentively listening to the Friday khutba when it is on.
The third instance is when Al Mughira bin Shu’ba said:
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I was with the prophet (during an expedition). He started to perform ablution and I was about to remove his socks (khuff), when he said, “Leave them, for I put them on while I was in a state of purity,” and he wiped over them. (Bukahari and Muslim)
As a response to questions asked by his companions
The prophet was the leader and sole authority in all matters concerning the Muslims. People would approach him with questions on religion, social, political and any other issues affecting them. He was the resourceof reference in addressing people’s issues. Therefore, his suggested solutions became part of hadith.
Aisha (R.A) narrated: “I asked the prophet about turning here and there in prayer. He replied: “It is a kind of theft by which Satan takes away (a portion of) the person’s prayer.”(AlBukhari and At-Tirmidhi).The latter’s wordings are,“Avoid turning while you are engaged in prayer for it leads to the destruction of your religion. If you have to do it, then do it in the voluntary prayer.”
The hadith is an example that evolved through a question that the prophet had to respond to a question that Aisha, his wife, asked on matters concerning turning during prayers. The other hadith below shows another hadith that was as a result to questions asked.
Abu Huraira narrated that the prophet was asked:
“Which kind of sadaqa was better?’ He replied, “That which is given by one who does not have much property. And begin by giving your dependents.” (Ahmad, Abu Dawoud. In Khuzaima, Ibn Hibban) Al Hakim graded it as sahih.
This hadith is another evidence of evolution of hadith as a respond to questions from the companions.
Ibn Abbas narrated that a woman from the tribe of Juhainah came to the prophet and said, “My
mother vowed to perform Hajj but she died before fulfilling her vow. Should I perform Hajj on
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her behalf?’ The prophet said, “Yes, perform Hajj on her behalf. Had there been a debt on your mother, would you have paid it or not? So pay off her debt to Allah, for He is most deserving of settlement of His debt.”(Al- Bukhari.)
As a demand of circumstances
r ircumstances and situations would arise and the companions would demand the prophet’s
suggestions and solutions as their leader, hence their suggestions and solutions became Hadith.
Ibn Abbas(R.A) narrated that when the prophet sent Muadh bin Jabal to Yemen (as governor); he
said to him:
“You are going to a people who are people of the scripture. Invite them to testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that I am His Messenger. If they obey you in this, then teach them that Allah, the Glorious One, has enjoined five prayers upon them in every day and night, and if they obey you in this, then tell them that Allah has made it obligatory for them to pay zakat upon their assets and it is to be taken from the wealthy among them and given to the poor among them.”(Al- Bukhari).
This hadith shows a situation where the prophet had to give instructions to a potential leader on the duties he should carry out. Another instance is explained in the hadith below:
Jabir bin Abdullah(R.A) narrated that the prophet visited a sick person and found him praying while sitting on a cushion. The prophet pushed it aside and said to him:
“Pray while sitting on the ground if you can, and if you cannot, then pray by nodding your head, and make a lower nodding for prostration than that for bowing (rukuu).”(Al- Baihaqi).
The other hadith below shows another circumstance that the prophet had to give decisions:
Anas narrated that the prophet narrated that the prophet passed by a fallen date in the street and
“Were it not for my doubt that this might have been given for charity, I would have eaten it.”(Bukhari and Muslim
As an interpretation of the Quran
The verses of the Qura’n were revealed to the prophet (h.B.U.H).It was the duty of the prophet to explain the meaning and application of those verses to his companions. Therefore his
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explanations and commentaries became Hadith. This proves that prophet had a duty of giving further clarification whenever the need arose as Allah says in the Holy Qura’n:
“With clear signs and books (We sent the messengers). And we have also sent down to you (O Muhammad ) the Dhikr [reminder] that is Quran, that you may explain clearly to men what is sent to them that they may give thought.”[Q: 16:44]
Following are examples of how the prophet interpreted the Quran using Hadith.
- Interpretation on Jumaa prayer
“Oyou, who believe, when the call is proclaimed to prayer on Friday, hasten earnestly to the
remembrance of Allah and leave off business: That is best for you but knew.”[Q: 62:9]
- a) Abdullah bin Umar and Abu Huraira (R.A) narrated that they heard the messenger of
Allah (P.B.U.H) say while standing on his pulpit, “ Those who are not attending Friday
prayer should stop doing so, otherwise Allah the Exalted will seal their hearts and they
will be reckoned among the heedless”(Muslim)
- b) Ibn Umar (R.A) narrated that the messenger of Allah said, “whoever catches only one
rakat of the Jumaa prayer, or any other, he should then add to it another one, and his
prayer will be complete” (AN-Nisai , Ibn-Maaja, Daraqutni)
- Interpretation on Ribaa
“Those who devour Ribaa will not stand except as stands one whom the Satan by his touch has driven to madness. That is because they say, “trade is like ribaa,” but Allah has permitted trade and forbidden ribaa. For who after receiving admonition from their Lord desist shall be pardoned for their past; their case is for Allah to judge; but those who repeat (the offence) are companions of the fire: they will abide therein (forever).” [Q: 2:275 -276]
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Abu Huraira (R.A) narrates that the messenger of Allah said: “whenever gold is exchanged with gold it should be equivalent in amount and quality, and whenever silver is exchanged for silver it should be equivalent in amount and quality. Whoever gives more or asks for more, this is considered ribaa.”(Muslim)
Forms of Hadith.
Hadith have been classified into four forms determined by the way they were presented by the prophet. These forms are:
Fiil (what he did)
Qaul (what he said)
Iqrar (what he silently approved)
This form of Hadith refers to the virtuous deeds or actions done by the Prophet (P.B.U.H). The following are examples of the prophets Hadith:
- Aisha (R.A) relates,” I never saw the messenger of God laughing in a way that the inside of
his mouth is apparent, he only used to smile.” (Al-Bukhari).
- Narrated by Jaaber (God be pleased with him) relates that on the day of the Idd (feast), the
prophet (peace be upon him) used to go to Idd prayer by one route and come back by another
This form of Hadith refers to sayings, reports or what came by word of mouth from the prophet (P.B.U.H). An example of Qaul is the following:
Abu-Huraira (God be pleased with him) relates that the messenger of God peace be upon him said,
“A hypocrite has 3 signs by when he can be known: if he speaks he lies, if give a promise he never
fulfill it, if he is entrusted with something he betrays the trust.”(Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
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Iqrar is also referred to as Takrir. It refers the deeds done by the Swahabas when the prophet kept quiet about them instead of disapproving them or rather he silently approved them. His silent approval was like giving them a go ahead to continue with the deeds. An example of this form of Hadith is as follows:
Ibn Abbas (R.A) narrated, “We used to pray two rak’at after sunset (before the Maghrib prayer, and the prophet would see us, but he did not order us to do so, nor did he prohibit.” (Muslim)
aive more examples of hadith that emerged through the prophet’s own initiative.
This refers to general appearance and especially bodily characteristics and the physical tributes the prophet possessed.It includes the qualities and attributes that the prophet displayed in his life. The Swahabas were able to observe his general conduct and follow them. Mention any attributes of the prophet that you can see being practiced today.The following are examples of hadith that emerged as a result of his Sifat:
- Narrated by Abu-Huraira (R.A) relates that Al- Hassan Ibn Ali (the prophet’s grandson
(R.A) picked up a date from the dates set for charity and put it in his month. The messenger
of God said, “Kikh Kikh” (dirt! Keep away!) Throw it out. Do you not know that we (the
Prophet (P.B.U.H) and his household) do not eat from charity?” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim).
2. Narrated by Aisha (R.A) relates that the messenger of Allah (P.B.U.H) used to like using the
right hand-side in all his affairs: his cleansing, combing his hair, putting on his footwear…
(Al-Bukhari and Muslim).
Contributions of hadith to Islamic thought and culture
1) The content of hadith provides an explanation of the verses of the Quran thus enhancing its
understanding and application of its teachings. For example; the holy Quran gives a ruling
that Muslims should pay Zakat without outlining the details of how much, on which items or
when to give the Zakat. We learn all these details from the hadith.
2) The study of Hadith has made tremendous contributions to the growth and development of
Islamic sharia. Muslim jurists like the four imams of the schools of thought studied the
sciences of hadith and simplified its understanding and application.
3) Hadith have provided a clear guidance on the code of conduct expected from the Muslims.
Muslims should adhere to specific mannerisms of walking, sleeping eating among others as
taught by our prophet(P.B.U.H)
4) Hadith have summarised the prophets exemplary life which Muslims emulate to mould their
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5) Hadith is the second source of sharia after the Quran. This was confirmed by the prophet in
his farewell address confirmed when he said “Verily, I have left among you the book of
Allah and the sunnah of his apostle which if you hold fast you shall never go astray.”
Give a brief explanation on the following forms of Hadith.
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Pillars of iman
The literal meaning of Iman is to belief in or to have faith in something.
There are six pillars of Iman as mentioned in the Quran: “The messenger believes in what
has been revealed to him from his Lord as do men of faith. Each one (of them)
believesinAllah, HisAngels, His books and His messengers. We make no distinctions (they
say) between one and another of His Messengers. ‘And they say ‘We hear and we obey 🙁
we seek) Your forgiveness our Lord and to you is the end of all journeys.” [Q: 2:285]
The prophet (saw) said “Iman is to believe in God, and His Angels, and His Scripture, and His apostles, and to believe in the resurrection and the last day and the divine premeasurement of good and evil, and to have faith in all these things.”(Muslim)
Literally Tawheed comes from the word Wah-hada,which means to make something Waahid(singular).
Technically-Tawheed means attributing oneness to Allah and describing Him as being one and unique.It is the first pillar of the six pillars of Iman and the most fundamental and important teaching of all the prophets and messengers who all taught the believe in the oneness of Allah’It is expressed in the hrimary Kalima“LA ILLA ILA LLAH” Meaning there is no God but Allah, or there is no one who has the right to be worshipped except Allah.Tawheed differentiate between a Muslim and a Kafir.
Allah says – “Say (O Muhammad). He is Allah the one. Allah, theself-sufficient master, whom all creatures need. He begets not, nor was he begotten. And there is none equal or comparable unto Him.”[Q112]
Allah says:“There is nothing like unto him and He is the All-Hearer, the All-sear.” [Q: 42: 11]
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Categories of tawheed
- Tawheed ar-rubabiyah.
This concept of Tawheed is based on the belief of unifying Allah(SWT) as the sovereign Lord(Rabbi).And that He is the sole Lord of the universe who sustains and maintains all creation with any need for it or for it.According to this category, since God is the real power in existence, it is He Who gives all things the power to move and to change. Allah mentions this concept in many Quranic verses:
“Say: “who is it that sustains you (in life) from sky and from the earth? Or who is it that has power over hearing and sight? And who is it that brings out the living from the dead and the dead from the living? And who is that rules and regulates all affairs? They will soon say “Allah” say, “Will you not then show piety (to him)?”[Q: 10:31]
Allah (S.W.T) says“And if indeed thou ask them who it is that sends down rain from the sky, and gives life therewith to the earth after its death, they will certainly reply “Allah” say “praise be to Allah!” But most of them understand not.”[Q: 29:63]
- Tawheed al-Uluhiyah
This means to believe that Allah (Swat) the most High is the one worth of true worship.
Therefore all acts of worship likeSalat, working, fasting, among others should be dedicated to
Allah alone. Hence it’s not permissible to associate anything in worship with Him.
Allah says,“To the ‘Aadpeople (we sent) Hud, one of their (own) brethren: He said,” O my
people! Worship Allah! You have no other god but him. Will you not fear (Allah)?”[Q:
Allah (SWT) also says, “Say; Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, The cherisher of the worlds”.[Q: 6:162]
- Tawheed al-asma wasifat. (Names and attributes).
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This category helps us to understand who our creator is through His names and qualities
through which we know that Allah (SWT) is beyond our imagination and bears no
Allah says “And (All) the most beautiful names belongs to Allah, so call on him by them.”[Q: 7: 180]
Attributes of Allah
The Prophet said “Allah has ninety nine names, i.e. one hundred minus one, and whoever guards [or counts] them (i.e. believes in their meaning and acts accordingly), will enter paradise: And Allah is witr (one) ‘and loves the witr.’
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Significance of tawheed.
- It is the first fundamental principal of the Islamic Faith.
- It assures the creatures that the creator is near them and ready to answer their request.
III. It distances mankind from worshipping other than Allah.
- It increases Taqwa since one is aware that Allah sees him wherever he may be and is aware
of even what is hidden in ones heart and mind.
- It leads one to ensure his respect and maintain his dignity as a respect to his creator.
- It gives an attitude of peace and contentment in a person since he knows that Allah will take
care of his needs if he in truly obedient and hardworking.
VII. It leads to unity and brotherhood amongst human beings.
VIII. It makes a believer to be dutiful and upright, since he knows that Allah(S.W.T) will ask
everybody of his responsibility on the day of the judgment. Therefore he does his duties
whole heatedly and this keeps him ways from neglecting his duties and from sin.
IX. It removes the fear of people since one strongly believes that not only his life but everything
is in the hands of Allah.
- It removes greedy and jealously and the desire to achieve success through even evil means as
one believes in the powers of Allah and not one’s endeavor.
- It does not allow him to be proud or arrogant.
XII. It makes a believer brave and courageous.
XIII. It makes a believer to be patient and preserving for he will know that whatever the problem
Allah(S.W.T) will have to solve it for his gradually.
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The term shirk comes from the Arabic word sharaka which means to associate or form partners with. In the Islamic context shirk means ascribing a partner or rival to Allah (S.W.T) in worship or His names and attributes.
Allah (S.W.T) says,“Allah forgive not that partners should set up with Him; but He forgives anything else to whom he pleases; to set up partners with god is to devise a sin most heinous indeed.”[Q: 4: 48]
Allah (S.W.T) says “Allah has said: ‘Take not (for worship) two gods. For He is just one God. Then fear me and me alone.”[Q: 16:51]
Forms of shirk.
There are three forms of shirk, namely:
- Shirk – al-akbar-major.
- Shirk al-asghar – minor.
- Shirk al-khafii – inconspicious/hidden.
- shirk-akbar(major shirk)
This form of shirk is manifested in the following four ways:
- Shirk ad-dua.
- Shirk a-niyaah.
- Shirk al-Taah.
- Shirk al -mahabah.
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It implies invoking supplication or praying to others besides Allah(S.W.T) such as to supplicate to the dead in the grave or worship via the ancestors.
Allah(SWT) Says,“And when they embark on a ship, they invoke Allah, making the faith pure for him only, but when he brings them safely to land behold, they give a share of their worship to others”.[Q:29:65]
- Shirk an- Niyyah wal Irada wal Qasd.
It means intention, determination or purpose in acts of worship not for Allah but towards others. Allah (S.W.T) says,“Whoever desires the life of the world and its glitters, to them shall pay in full their deed therein, and they will have no domination therein. They are those for whom there is nothing in the here after but fire and ruin is the deeds they did. And of no effect that which they used to do.”[Q: 11:15-16]
Allah (S.W.T) says:
“Have you seen him whom takes for his God his own passion?”[Q: 25: 43]
III. Shirk Taah.
This type means obeying any other authorities against the willAllah. Allah(S.W.T) says,“They Jews and Christians took their rabbis and their monks to be their Lords besides Allah, and Messiah son of Mariam while they were commanded (in Taurat and lnjil) to worship none but Allah Lailla to Huwa. Praise and glory is to him for having the partners they associate.”[Q: 9:31]
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- Shirk al Mahaba
This is showing the love that is due to Allah to others other than Him. Allah (S.W.T) says,
“And of mankind are some who take (for worship) others besides Allah as rivals. They love them as they love Allah. But those who believe love Allah more. If only those who do wrong could see, when they will see the torment that all power belongs to Allah is severe in punishment.”
- Shirk al-asghar (minor shirk).
It also termed as Ar-riya.
Ar-riya is any action which is performed in order to receive praise, fame or any other worldly gain.It is performing Ibaada to show off for example performing swalat so that you can be seen or praised.Any actions that are done out of showing off will not be rewarded by Allah(S.W.T) “Those who want but to be seen.”[Q: 107:6]
Allah says “The hypocrites seek to deceive Allah but it is Allah who deceives them. When they stand up to prayer, stand without earnestness, to be seen of men, But little do they hold Allah in remembrance.”[Q: 4:142]
- Shirk al khafi i.e Inconspicous Shirk.
Have you ever had a feeling of dissatistfaction n something? What are some of the things in
life that leave you dissatisfiedor makeyou keep wishing that you had better things than what Allah (S.W.T) has provided you with? Having this feeling may lead you to performing Shirk al Khafi.
This type of Shirk involves being inwardly dissatisfied with the inevitable condition that has being ordained for one by Allah (S.W.T) conscientiously lamenting that had you done or not done such and such or had you approached such and such you would have had a better status. It is one of the most dangerous forms of shirk as people cannot see when they are performing it.This Shirk is so hidden and difficult that even the one committing it cannot recognize it. The prophet said “ashirk alkhafii in the muslim nation is more inconspicuous than the creeping of a black ant on a black rock in the pitch darkness of the night.”
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While commenting on this Hadith Ibin Abbas said that kind of shirk is like when one tells his
friends. “You and God what you wished is what happened” If it was not so and so”.
Hadith narrated by Abu Sa‘id Al-Khudri that the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wassallam) said,
“Should I not inform you of what I fear more for you than Al-Masih-ul-Dajjal (the
Antichrist)?” The people said, “Yes, O Messenger of Allah.” He said, “It is the hidden Shirk; a person stands up in Salah (Prayer) and tries to make it perfect when he realizes that others are looking at him.” (Related by Imam Ahmad)
Why Quran condemn shirk
- Shirk is the highest of the wrong doing according to the instructions given by Luqman to his
son. “Behold, Luqman said to his son by way of instructions: ‘o my son join not in worship
(others) with Allah: for false worship is indeed the highest wrong doing.” [Q: 31:13]
- When one attaches Allah’s attributes to any of his creations, he or she undermines Allah’s
sovereignty yet Allah is supposed to sovereign.
- It is of all the sins, Allah (S.W.T) vows not to forgive anyone who commits it knowingly.
This is because a person who commits such a sin undermines Allah’s function as the creator,
sustainer and destroyer of life.Allah (S.W.T) says,“Allah forgive not that partners should
set up with Him; but He forgives anything else to whom he pleases; to set up partners with
god is to devise a sin most heinous indeed.”[ Q: 4: 48]
- Belief in Shirk creates amenity in the society, since people will always be suspicious of each
other and they will divot themselves with the belief in Allah as one who predetermines
- Shirk makes man to have little or no confidence in God but in other things most especially in
times of danger which defames the status of man as Allah’s vicegerent as the best of his
- Shirk makes a person to distance him or herself from Allah (S.W.T) yet man is supposed to
always be nearest to God pray to him whenever he or she has a problem. Yet those who
practice other objects created by Allah. “And who is more astray than one who invokes
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,besides Allah,such as will not answer to the day of judgment, and who(in fact)are unconscious of their call(to them)” [Q: 46:5]
- Shirk makes an individual not to be dutiful and upright, one who performs shirk does not his
carry out or her duties whole heartedly and this makes her or him near to sinking all the time.
- Shirk makes a person behave like a coward as he or she will always be thinking that even
objects which have no life can protect her or him from any danger or misfortune e.g. wearing
BELIEF IN ANGELS
The belief in the angelsis the second pillar of Iman.
Angels are holy and pure creatures of Allah(S.W.T) to whom He Has bestowed the power to perform specific divine duties.
“O you who believe!Save yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones, over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe, who flinch not (from executing the commands they receive from Allah, but do (precisely) what they are commanded.” [Q: 66:6]
From the above ayat, Angels do not execute their duties just for the sake of it but are dedicated to their duties for which they were created. They are characterized by the following main features:
- They are creatures of Allah that He created from Noor (light).Aisha(RAA)narrates
that the messenger of Allah says, ‘Angels were created from light, jinns were created from smokeless fire and Adam was created from that which was described to you (in the Quran, which is clay.)’(Sahih Muslim.)
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- Allah created them outside blood relationship, hence unlike human beings;they are
not associated with having such relations as parental (parent to child), fraternal (brother to brother/sister) or any other blood relation.
iii. They are not associated with any gender like the human beings are.“And they make
into females Angels who themselves serve Allah Did they witness their creation? Their evidence will be recorded,and they will be called to account.” [Q: 43:19]
- Allah has not bestowed unto them the feelings of hunger, thirst or such related
desires. This is told in the story of Nabii Ibrahim when Allah(S.W.T) send
messengers to him,
“There came our messengers to Abraham with glad tidings .They said, “Peace!”
He answered “peace!” and hastened to entertain them with a roasted calf. But when he saw their hands went not towards the (meal), he felt some mistrust of them, and conceived a fear of them. They said, ‘Fear not: We have been sent against the people of Lut.”[Q 11:69-70]
- They were relieved by the divine powers of Allah, from fatigue, monotony and the
desire to either relax or sleep.
- They have no definite bodies to be identified with but Allah has bestowed them with
the ability to be in any form that is relevant with the prevailing circumstance e.g. Birds (when they appeared to Adam to teach him on burial), man (when they appeared to prophets Lut and Muhammad) or invisible (when they helped the Muslims during the battle of Badr).
vii. Allah has prepared their abode (the place of their convergence) in heaven.
viii. They diligently praise Allah and glorify Him in deeds and articulation.
ANGELS AND THEIR DUTIES
- Jibril (Gabriel)
He communicated the revelation to all prophets by taking the divine message with the order
of Allah to the relevant recipients.
“Say, (O Muhammad) the Holy Spirit (i.e. Jibril) has brought it down from your Lord in truth in order to strengthen those who believe, and as guide and glad tidings to the Muslims.”[Q: 16:102]
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He is in charge of rain.
“Whoever is an enemy to Allah and His Angels and His Messengers and Jibril and Mikailthen indeed Allah is an enemy to the disbelievers.”[Q: 2:98]
Do you know about the day of judgement? On the day the horn will be blown to call every
one to accont for his deeds. The Angel in charge of blowing this trumpet is known as Israfiil. Even though his name is not mentioned in the Quran his duty has been mentioned when Allah (S.W.T) says,
“And the horn will be blown. That is the day of the threat.”[Q: 50:20]
“The trumpet shall be sounded, behold! When people will rush forth from their graves to their Lord.”[Q: 36:51]
Allah (S.W.T) has said in the holy Quran that every living thing shall test death. During
theremoval of the souls, a special Angel called Malakul-Maut (The Angel of death) is sent by Allah to take the soul back to its creator.
He is in charge of removing souls at the time of death.
“And He is the subjugation over His servants and He sends over you guardian Angels until, when death comes to one of you, our messengers (i.e. Angels of death) take him and they do not fail (in their duties).”[Q: 6:61]
Say: “The Angel of death, put in charge of you, will (duly) take your souls.Then shall you be brought back to your lord.”[Q: 32:11]
- Atid and Raqiib (Kiraman Katibun)
Islam encourage sthe doing of good always thogh at times we may commit mistakes in life.
Are we aware that all the things we do in life are recorded? Just as we keep our records in a
diary, Allah has his Angels whom he has given the responsibility of keeping every human
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beings record. The Quran refers to them as Kiraman Katibun. They are angels in charge of recording good and evil deeds of individuals.
“When the two receivers (recording Angels receive), seated on the right and left….”[Q: 50:17]
“For each (such person, there are Angels in succession. Before him: they guard him by command of Allah.Verily never will Allah change the condition of a people until they change it themselves (with their own souls)” [Q: 13:11]
He is in charge of Hell fire.
“And they will call, ’O Malik let your Lord put an end to us!’ Indeed, you will remain.”[Q: 43:77]
He is in charge of paradise. In the Quran, Allah (SWT) mentions them as many Angels
welcoming those who used to do good deeds in the Janna (paradise). “Gardens of perpetual bliss: They shall enter there, as well as the righteous amoung their fathers, their spouses, and their off springs: And Angels shall enter unto them from every gate (with the salutation”) [Q: 13:23-24]
- Munkar and Nakir
They are Angels in charge of questioning in the grave. They also discharge severe punishment to the
dead people who had committed sin.
Suggested study questions and class activities.
Answer the following questions in your I.R.E revision excersise book.
- Explain the meaning of term Tawheed.
- What are the characteristics of Angels?
- Elaborate on the three types of shirk.
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Find out how shirk is manifested in your community.
Pillars of Islam
There are five pillars of Islam which are the frame work of a Muslim life. These are the basic beliefs that shape the Muslim thought, deeds and society.
Diagram of the pillars of the pillars of Islam:
Meaning of Shahada
The word Shahada is an Arabic term which means to testify or to bear witness.
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Literal meaning: Shahada is a special sentence: La illaha ila Allah wa Muhammadun rasoolollah (There is no (other) Lord except Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.
(Lailaha illa-Allahu Muhammad rasul Allah)
Measuring of Shahada.
Shahada is the first pillar of Islam whichconsists of two main parts.
The first part of the shahada says: (Lailaha illa-Allahu Muhammad rasul Allah) That there is non worthy of worship except Allah.
Thispart declares the absolute unity of Allah, his oneness as the only one who deserves to be worshipped. Muslims are not supposed to render complete obedience for no human nor material object possess power and authority equal to Him.
It is the gateway way to Islam.
The second part of the shahada says:Muhammadun rasoolollahMuhammad(P.B.U.H) is His messenger.
The Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) as the messenger of Allah.
His being mentioned in the Shahada confirms that he is the universal and final prophet sent to all mankind.
Mankind has the obligations in following the teachings and commandments of prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H).
They have a duty to adhere to the teachings in order to seek Allah Pleasure although he is the last in the ladder of the prophets of Allah.
Significance of Shahada in the life of a Muslim.
- Shahada makes a believer to surrender all his/her life to God. This makes a believer to fulfill
- It produces in a believer a high degree of confidence and respect towards His creator.
- Instills in a believer feeling of contentment for he/she will know that Allah(S.W.T) willtake
care of all his needs.
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- It makes a believer to be brave and courageous as he will know that it is Allah who owns his
- It recognizes and re-affirms that prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) is the chosen messenger of
- It makes believers develop trust and heed to the guidelines of the prophet.
- It gives an opportunity to the believers to know how Allah (S.W.T) has honoredProphet
- Gives Allah the absolute right to be worshipped.
- It affirms that prophet Muhammad(P.B.U.H) is the chosen messenger of Allah(S.W.T)
10.When uttered by a Muslim on his death will lead one to enter paradise.
4.22 Swalat read Q: 4:103
As-Salah: In the Arabic language it means prayer (Invocation).
Salat, which is the second pillar of Islam, may be defined as a special a process of worshipping A which includes supplication of duas, glorification of Allah’s name, prostrations in order to seek blessings and forgiveness.
In this process ofworship, there are certain known and prescribed invocations and acti
systematically performed starting with Takbeer (saying Allah Akbar;God is the Great) which
ending with Tasleem (saying: as-salaam ‘alaykum wa Rahmatul-lahi wabarakaatuh; may All
Peace, Mercy, and Blessings be upon you) do you perform swalat? Can you demonstrate how sw
is performed? If you perform swalat regularly,you will discover that there are two types of sawlat,
obligatory and the voluntary prayers. We shall now look at each of these prayers in details.
1.Fardn-ain( obligatory prayers)
These are prayers compulsory for every Muslim under the obligation by the shariah to perf
them.Failure to perform them pens one to punishment in the hereafter. Allah(S.W.T) says in
“And establish regular prayers at the two ends of the day and at the approaches of the night those things that are good remove those that evil:But that the word of the rememberance to th who remember(their Lord)” [Q:11:114]
Let us now look at the obligatory prayers and the times prescribed for there performance accordin Islamic Sharia.
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This is the morning prayer which consists of two rakats(units).It’s time occurs when a vertical
pillar of faint light appears in the east and spreads on the horizon,distinct from the darkness of night.This is just before sunrise. Quran recitation is loud for the two rakaats.
This is the early afternoon prayer.It consist of four raka’at (units) and it’s time occurs after the
sun has gone (passed over head) after reaching the highest point in the sky.)
This prayer is said in the late afternoon.It consist of four raka’at(units)
This is the sunset prayer.It consists of three raka’at(units).It has the shortest duration which
starts immediately after the sun has set.Quran recitation is loud for the first two raka’ats.
This prayer is performed immediately after Maghrib prayer.It consists of four raka’at in which
the first two Raka’at are recited aloud.Its time extends to the later part of the night.
These are obligatory prayers which must be performed by atleast one muslim in the community.If it is
performed by a single Muslim, then the obligation is lifted from the others.Incase it’s not performed by one at all the whole society gets sin.e.g Swalatul Janaza. Can you demonstrate before your friends how this prayer is performed?
3.Sunnah prayers (optional)
These are prayers that are not compulsory for the muslims.They are performed to follow the
exemplary teachings of the prophet(P.B.U.H) and are therefore recommended.
Can you give examples of Sunnah prayers and mention the number of rakaats for each? Some of the sunnah prayers are as follows:
- Tahhiyatul Masjid.
The prayer of tahhiyat al-masjid (greeting of the masjid) is a confirmed sunna once a day, and
recommended thereafter. It consists of two rakaats and is best preformed before sitting down even
though the sunna is not lifted if one does sit first. One can intend this prayer along with their sunna or
fard if they do not have time to pray it. One should not pray the tahhiyat al-masjid during a disliked
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This prayer is performed at night and it is recommended that it be performed after first going to sleep
for some part of the evening. Its time falls between the prayer times of the isha’a prayers and the Fajr
prayers. It is also recommended that the prayers be done in the last third of the night. Muslims believe that the reward is greater for those who do this prayer at a later time.
The Tahajjud prayer consists of a minimum of tworakaatand the maximum number is unlimited.
It’s reported about the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) that he said: “Adhere to night prayer, for it is the habit of the righteous before you, and a means of drawing nearer to your Lord; it is an expiation for sins, and a deterrent from wrongdoing.” [Tirmidhi & al-Hakim]
Tarawih is an optional prayer in that can be done only during the Muslim fasting month ofRamadhan.
This prayer can be done alone, in a group, at home, or in a mosque or other public meeting area it.
Typically, Muslims gather together and perform tarawih as a group. Others may meet in their local
mosque, a meeting hall, or even in an outdoor field. The minimum number of raka’ah of Tarawih is
eight with a maximum of Twenty. It is also customary for the Imam in the main mosque to recite the
entire Qur’an during the fasting month by reading approximately one section per day. This practice of
reading the Qur’an completely is known as khatm (complete recitation).
- Witr prayer
Witr prayer starts after a person prays the Isha prayer until dawn. Evidence for this is that the Prophet
(P.B.U.H) said: “Allah has prescribed for you a prayer (by which He may increase your reward), which is Witr; Allah has enjoined it for you during the time between ‘Isha’ prayer until dawn begins.” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi)
It is better to pray the witr prayer in the final third of the night because prayer at this time is witnessed by the angels. However, if a person fears that he will not get up at the last third of the night then he or she can pray it straight in the beginning third so that he or she does not miss the prayer.
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One should make the night prayers and odd number and thus the Witr prayer is an odd number of rakkats. It may consist of one, three, five, seven, nine or any other odd number. Most Muslims perform three rakaats. If you are praying the witr prayer and dawn is approaching then you should pray one rakkat so that you can pray witr before the start of dawn.
- Swalatu-l Istikhara
Istikhara is Arabicword which means to ask Allah to guide one to the right thing.Have you been in a
difficult situation especially when you have to choose between two permissible alternatives? Mention
some of the difficult decision you have had to choose.Allah (S.W.T) provides an answer whenever a
Muslim is in such a difficult situation. This is by offering a two rakaat prayer to seek guidance. Sa’ d
ibn Waqas reported that the hrophet(h.B.U.H) said, “Istikharah (seeking guidance from Allah) is one
of the distinct favors (of Allah) upon man, and a good fortune for the son of Adam is tobe pleased
with the judgment of Allah. And a misfortune of the son of Adam is his failure to make istikharah
(seeking Allah’s guidance), and a misfortune for the son of Adam is his displeasure with the judgment
After completing the two-rak’ats, one praises Allah (S.W.T) and sends salutations to the hrophet (P.B.U.H) and recites the following supplication as narreted by Jabir.
“(O Allah! I ask guidance from Your knowledge, and Power from Your Might and I ask for Your great blessings. You are capable and I am not. You know and I do not and You know the unseen. O Allah! If You know that this job is good for my religion and my subsistence and in my Hereafter-(or said: If it is better for my present and later needs)-then You ordain it for me and make it easy for me to get, and then bless me in it, and if You know that this job is harmful to me in my religion and subsistence and in the Hereafter-(or said: If it is worse for my present and later needs)-then keep it away from me and let me be away from it. And ordain for me whatever is good for me, and make me satisfied with it).” (Sahih Bukhari)
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This is the prayer of salutation to the mosque and is performed upon entering the mosque .It consists
of two rakaats. In case a person who was sitting inside the mosque went out of it, and then returned to it after a short period of time then he is not required to perform the prayer of salutation to the mosque. However, if he performs this prayer he will be rewarded for doing so.
VII. Swalatu-l Dhuhaa
It is the mid-morning Prayer. Its time starts when sun risesto the height of a spear and ends close to
midday. The best time is when mid-morning heat has intensified. The minimum number of rakaat is
two but can be prayed upto eight rakaats.
VIII. Qabliyya and Baadiya prayers
These prayers are offered before or after the Fardh prayers. The number of rakaats varies from one
prayer to another. This can be illustrated by the table below:
Fardh swalat Number of rakaat before Number of rakaat after
Fajr 2 None
Dhuhr 2 2
Asr None None
Maghrib None 2
Isha 2 2
The term twahara is Arabicword which means cleanliness.It is used in Islam to imply a state of ritual purity. This is a requirement in the observance of the acts of worship mention other instances where a muslim is require to be pure.
Ritual purity is attained through three ways;Ghusl(ritual bath),udhu(ablution)and tayammum(dry
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ablution)Let us now discuss each of the three ways:
It’s a form of a ritual bath which involves the washing of a whole body.The following conditions makes it compulsory for a muslim to perform ghusl:
After sexual intercourse
After completing menstruation(Heidh)
Immediately after giving birth.
Ø When a person dies it’s the duty of the Muslims to wash the body.
After completing the post birth bleeding(Nifas)
Ejeculation of sperms when one is asleep or awake.
There Are other instances when the ritual Baath becomes optional.Can you mention any of them? Let us consider the following occasions:
Before going for Friday prayers.
Before going for the two Idd prayers (Idd ul adha and Idd ul Fitr)
After washing the deadbody.
When a non Muslim converts to Islam.
Before performing prayers for the rain.
Before praying holy city of Makka.
Before standing at Arafat during Hajj.
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Before going round the Kaaba.
Ø Before running between the two hillocks of swafa and marwa(Sa’i)
Before entering the Holy city of Madina.
Before throwing pebbles at Mina during the three days. Steps of performing ghusl.
There are several essential steps that are followed in performing ghusl.These steps are also referred to as fardh or integral steps and must be followed for ones Ghusl to be valid. These include the following:
eou must declare your intention of cleansing to seek Allah’s pleasure and to perform the acts
Removal of impurities.These are those substances that block the penetration of water into the skin. Can you give examples of such impurities?
Ensuring that water reaches all the parts of the body from the head to the toe.
Sunna acts of Ghusl
Apart from the Fardh steps, we have some acts that are included in the performance of ghusl but are not compulsory. These are termed as sunnah or optional acts of ghusland include th efollowing:
Starting with the basmallah
Washing the whole body three times.
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Passing the hands all over the body.
Starting from the right then left.
Reciting a dua after Ghusl.
Acts forbidden while in the state of janaba(impurity)
Even though the performance of the acts of Ibada earns a Muslim reward,in the state of ritual impurity,it is forbidden for a muslim to indulge in the following:
Recitation of Quran
Performing of prayers
Entering the mosque
Touching the Quran
Performing Tawaff during Hajj.
In addition,a woman in menstruation is forbidden to perfom the following acts: Recitation of the Quran.
Holding or touching Quran.
Observing any tipes of fast whether Fardh or Sunnah. Having sexual relations with the husband.
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Entering the mosque.
To be divorced.
To perform tawwaf.
Wudhu’ Read [Q: 5:6]
When you go to any mosque, you will notice people sitting or standing where there are waer points o taps performing some preparations for prayers(swalat) Have you ever asked yourself why they do so.The reason is for purification. You can remember what we learnt about Twahara. What did we say about it? In this section,we shall look at wudhu as another way of attaining purity(Twahara)
Wudhu therefore is an is an Arabic word which means ablution .It involves washing ones face, hands,
head and feet in order to perform the acts of ibada.There are essential steps of performing Wudhu
Essential steps of wudhu
These are fardh or obligatory acts.They must be observed by however is performing wudhu. Failure to observe any of them will cosequencially render the process incomplete and your prayers null ansd void. A muslim must therefore follow the following steps while perfoming Wudhu:
Making the intention to perform udhu’.
Washing the face from the top of the forehead to the chin and between the two ear lobes. Washing both arms up to and including the elbows.
Wiping a part of the head with wet hands.
Washing both feet up to and including the ankles.
Following the prescribed sequence without inter-changing any step.
Optional steps of performing wudhu
In the performance of Wudhu, we have some steps that we observe and have not been mentioned IN the above essentials. Could you mention any of these to you friend? The perfomance of these acts is considered as following the example of our Prophet (P.B.U.H). They are referred to as the sunna acts of wudhu and include the following:
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Ø Reciting: “Bismillahir-Rahmanir-Rahim” (in the Name of aod, the All-Merciful, and the All-
Compassionate) before you starttaking wudhu.
Brushing of the teeth.
Washing the palms up to the wrists three times, including the parts between the fingers. Cleaningthemouth with a brush or a finger and gargling three times.
Rinsing the nostrils three times.
Passing ones wet fingers through the beards. To run water through ones fingers and toes. Performingeach act three times.
Starting with the right hand side before the left. Wiping the whole head and the back of the neck Wiping the ears in and out.
Taking the entire udhu at once without breaking. Reciting dua during and after Wudhu.
Performing the acts systematically.
Washing the parts one after the other without pausing, so that no part dries up before completion of wudhu.
Facing the direction of Qibla during the performance of wudhu.
Recommended acts (mustahab) of wudhu
Reciting the kalima(shahada)after ablution.
Avoiding worldly talk during the time for wudhu.
Avoiding extravagance (wasting water) during ablution.
Choosing a clean place for the performance of wudhu.
Nullifiers of wudhu
Wudhu is meant for perfomance of the acts of worship. A Muslim preparing for prayers can perform
wudhu and sustain it for the swalat of the rest of the day. However, there are certain acts that
invalidate wudhu (often referred to as “breaking wudhu”).It is therefore important to note that the
absence of wudhu will imply that those intended acts of worship will not be valid.We must therefore
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have the knowledge of the things that will‘break wudhu’. These are what we refer to as nulliers.The following are among the acts that nullify wudhu’:
- Coming out of either solid, liquid or gas/wind from the two private parts (front and
- Emission of blood, pus or yellow matter from a wound, boil, pimple, or something
similar to such an extent that it flows beyond the wound’s mouth.
- Vomiting a mouthful of matter.
- Physical contact for pleasure between men and women without any obstacle (e.g.,
- Loss of consciousness through sleep, drowsiness, and any such condition that may
affect the proper functioning of the mind.
- Temporary insanity, fainting, hysteria, or intoxication.
- Touching the private parts with bear hands(without any barrier)
Supposing you were travelling and the time of prayer finds you at a place where there is no water, How would you purify yourself for Swalat? Taking into consideration that swalat is a must for a muslim and is performed at prescribed times; Allah (S.W.T) has given a solution to such an eventuality in the Quran. Almighty Allah (S.W.T) says: “…But if you are ill,or on a journey,or one of you comes from offices of nature,or you have been in contact with women and you find no water,then take for yourselves clean sand or earth and rub therewith your faces and hands.Allah does not wish to place you in a difficulty, but to make you clean…”[Q:5:6]
In reference to this verse, the use of clean sand for purification in preparation for swalat is refeerd to as tayammum.
Even though the word tayammum literally means an aim or a purpose, in this context it refers to dry ablution where clean sand is used to wipe the face and the limbs as an alternative of wudhu’.
Hudhaifa (R.A) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (P.B.U.H) said: “And the soil of the earth has
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been made for us as a means with which to purify ourselves (for prayer) when we cannot find water.”
Reasons for performing Tayammum
Even though the sharia allows the use of pure sand for purification,it is only permissible on specific occasions.This occasions may be necessitated by the following reasons:
- In case there is scarcity of water. This is when there is acute shortage of water or the available
water is insufficient for performing ablution.
- For health reasons.If one is injured or ill and fears that use of water will worsen the condition.
- If the water is too cold and it is likely to cause physical harm to the user.
- If the process of getting water is dangerous or life threatening.
- When the available water is reserved for domestic use.
- Fear of missing a prayer by the time one gets to the source of water.
- If the the available water is impure.
Conditions of tayammum
When performing Tayammum,you should consider the following three conditions:
- One must use clean sand.
- It should be performed at the time of that particular prayer.
- The tayammum of one prayer ends at the termination of that particular prayer e.g one cannot
use tayammum of Dhuhr for another prayer.
Essential steps of tayammum.
Besides the three conditions of perfoming Tayammum,the following steps should be followed while in the actual process:
- You must make the intention of performing tayammum.
- Strike the first heap of pure soil lightly with the palms of both hands and passing the palms
over the face one time.
- Strike the second heap of pure soil with one’s palms and rubbing the right and left arms
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alternately from the fingertips to the elbows.
- Follow the order above.
Nullifiers of tayammum.
As you learnt earlier, wudhu can be nullified by certain acts. Do you remember some of these acts? Similarly,thre are acts that if done will nullify tayammum.These acts include the following:
- All that nullifies wudhu will also nullify tayammum.
- As soon as the cause for performing it is removed (i.e., the sick person recovers or pure water
- Performance of fardh prayer. A Muslim is not supposed to perform two fardh prayers with the
- When one denounces Islam.
Significance of Swalat- (Prayers)
As already seen, Swalat is the second pillar of Islam. It is a practical pillar since it must be observed by following specific steps. The entire process of swalat which starts right from purification to its actual performance leaves a positive impact on the Muslim and society at large. What is the importance of swalat to you as a Muslim? How different is a society in which prayers are offered from one in which they are not? In this section, we shall look at how prayers benefit the society both spiritually and socially.
It trains a Muslim to avoid evil and shameful deeds. Allah(S.W.T) says “and established
regular prayer for prayer restrains from shameful and evil deeds.”[Q: 29:45]
Prayer is a means of leveling all differences of rank, creed, color, status and nationality, thus promoting equality. This is achieved through the use of similar facilities by all, standing side by side during swalat regardless of the differences in status, race or rank.
Promotes leadership qualities. For example the choosing of an Imam among the Muslims who is given and respect honor by all.
It encourages a Muslim to enjoin good and forbidevil.
It brings cohesion and unity among Muslim who will meet at the mosque frequently thus renewing their friendship.
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It encourages a Muslim to be timeconcious since each prayer is conducted at a prescribed
time; you are expected to arrive in the mosque or area of conducting the prayers in good time. It instills self-respect, self-discipline, self-control, love, peace and harmony.
It is the second pillar of Islam which therefore be observed by every Muslim.
It makes a Muslim realize his duty is to worship Allah (S.W.T) alone.Allah (S.W.T)
says: “Verily I am Allah; there is no God but I: So serve non other than Me (only)
and establish regular player for my remembrance.”[Q:20:40]
It is a sign of obedience for all those who perform prayers since it is a command from
Is a means through which Muslims communicate directly to God thus discouraging
Prayers distinguish believers from non-believers since they are only performed by
those who believe in Allah (S.W.T) and if performed by the non believer, then it does
not become acceptable.
Swalat ul jamaa
Prayers are offered either individually or in congregation. When offered in congregation,it is refeered Swalat ul Jamaa.Itis the performance of prayers together by more than one person. Mention any prayers that are offered collectively.There are several prayers that are performed in congregation,theseinclude the five daily prayers, Friday noon prayers, prayers during eclipse (solar and lunar), the two Idd prayers (Al Fitri and Al Adha),swalatul Janaza(funeral prayers) and Al Istisqai (prayer for seeking rain).
Conditions for Jamaa prayer.
You must have noted during the performance of prayers in congregation, ther are certain things that should be observed. Below, we are going to explain to you some of these conditions which you may have performed unknowingly in your mosque or when you were attending a swalat in Jamaa.
Ø It should be conducted at an accessible place where anybody is not deprived of the
chance to attend it ie the place should be open and accessible to all.
Ø The place should be such that people are neither shy nor scared from entering or
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Ø herforming Jamaa with one’s family is highly recommended because it gives a chance
to teach the young members how to pray. It encourages members of the family to
perform prayers without laziness and enables the head of the family to monitor the
attitudes of the family members.
Ø The Imam should understand the steps to be followed and he should follow them.
Ø Both the imam and the followers must be at the same place. The followers in two
mosques can not be led by the same Imam.
Ø The followers should not perform any step before the Imam for example one should
follow the Imam when going for rukuu, sijda or any other step.
Ø A female Imam can only be allowed when leading other females otherwise she can
neither lead males nor a congregation of both males and females. Generally, the
women are not as compelled to perform Jamaa prayers as males because of their roles
as mothers andcaretakers of the family.
Ø A non Muslim is not allowed to lead a congregation prayer even if he is
knowledgeable and there is no one to lead prayers.
Ø An insane cannot lead prayers. This is so because he might not comprehend the
pronunciation of words and format of the prayer.
Ø When leading the prayers, the Imam should pronounce the words clearly without
substituting the sounds and syllables.
Ø The Imam should be more knowledgeable over the rest in Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence)
and aspects of swalat, among other branches of Islamic knowledge. When there is
more than one knowledgeable person, other attributes like piety should be considered.
Where all of them are pious, then the oldest can be made the Imam.
Importance of swalat ul jamaa
In most communities you will observe that members are encouraged to do most of the activities together and in unity.Usually success is achieved when things are done in unity thus the Swahili proverb; umoja ni nguvu utengano ni udhaifu(unity is strength).Can you mention some of the
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activities that are done communually in your society? Similarly, in Islam the prophet(P.B.U.H)highly recommended the Jamaat prayers as stated in the following hadiths:
Abu Huraira (R.A) narrated that a blind man came to the prophet (P.B.U.H) and said to him, “O
messenger of Allah, I have no one to guide me to the mosque.’(He was asking for the permission of
the prophet to pray in his house) the prophet (P.B.U.H) gave himpermission to pray at home, but
when he turned to go back, the prophet called him and said, “do you hear the Adhan?” the blind man
said, “Yes” the prophet then said, “then respond to it (by coming to the mosque)” (related by
IbnAbbas (R.A) narrated that the messenger of Allah said, “If any one hears the Adhan but does not cometo the congregational prayer,the prayer he offers will not be accepted unless he has an excuse” (Ibn Ma’ja,Ibn Hiban, Al Hakim)
The above two hadith can briefly illustrate to us how the prophet laid emphasis on the observance of prayers in Jamaa. Let us also consider the following benefits of Jamaa prayers:
- Muslims have a chance of converging five times a day to cement their brotherhood when
the prayers are performed at the mosque behind the Imam.
- One can unite his family members and monitor their performance in ibadah by performing
prayers with them in Jamaa.
- Muslims learn from others how to perform prayers correctly. This is of specific
importance to children and new converts who need to learn religious practices from others
who are experienced.
- It promotes confidence in performance of prayers.
- It promotes discipline since the maamumatare not supposed to preceed the Imam. Such
discipline makes and proves the Islamic system of worship to be orderly
- It promotes strictness and concentration.
- Develops and promotes leadership qualities. For example the selection of one of the
members to be an imam shows respect and honoraccorded to him.
- The reward for Jamaa prayer is twenty seven times more than praying alone.
- It promotesMuslims of different social, political, economic and professional background
keep off their differences and converge together for prayers.
Prayers for special occasion
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Even though we have prayers prescribed for particular times, Islam gives room for certain prayers to be offerd during special occasions. Can you mention any prayers that are offered at times other than the time for the normal daily prayers? How differently are these prayers performed? In addition to what you have mentioned we shall consider the following as special acassions:
Swalatul Musafir: (Prayer of a Traveler)
In normal life situation people travel from one place to another for various reasons.Suggest some of the reasons as t why people travel. At one point you must have also travelled from your home area to another place, either far or near. Can you recall the furthest place you have travelled to?
In Arabic language, a traveler is known as a musafir. But in thecontext of special prayer,a musafir is a Muslim who sets out intending to travel for more than 77 kilometers regardless of the mode of transport. He is regarded a musafir the moment he comes out of the boundaries of his town or city.
During traveling, a muslim may not be in a position to offer the prayers in the normal way due to the conditions experienced in the journey. Allah (S.W.T) Has not left out his favors and has given the Muslim traveler privileges which include swalatul Musafir.This prayer can be performed inthree ways.These are:Jamu’ Taqdim, Jamu’ Taakhir and Qasr.
Allah says “When you travel through the earth, there is no blame on you if you shorten the
prayers, for fear the unbelievers may attack you: For the unbelievers are unto enemies.”[Q 4:101]
This is to bring forward a prayer e.g. to bring forward Asr and pray it at Dhuhr time.
Muadh (R.A) narrated, “We set out with the prophet on the expedition of Tabuk and he combined Dhuhr and Asr together…” (Muslim)
This is delaying of one prayer and performing it at the time ofthe next prayer. For example, delaying Dhuhr and then performing it with Asr during Asr time.Anas (R.A) narrated that:“Whenever the messenger of Allah started on a journey before the sun had passed its meridian (before noon) he would delay the Dhuhr prayer till the time of Asr…”(Bukhari and Muslim)
It is the shortening of the 4 rakaats prayer to perform then in two rakats.For example, Dhuhr, Asr and Isha can all be shortened to two rakaats.
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There is no reduction of rakaats for the fajr and maghrib swalaats. One has to offer them completely as he normally does.
Anas (R.A) narrated: “We travelled with the prophet from Madina to Makka and he used to pray two rakaat prayers until we returned to Madina.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
Other prayers for special occasions include the following;
Kusuf wal Khusuf
Have you ever witnessed either of the eclipses? What do you normally do when there is an eclipse of the sun or the moon? Are you aware that Islam has offered a clear and definite practice to be done during any of the eclipses? This is by performing two rakaat prayers.
Aisha(RA) Narrated that , “ The messenger of Allah recited the Quran aloud during the eclipse prayer and performed a total of two rakaat” (Bukhari and Muslim)
Allah (S.W.T) has created different seasons like summer, winter, spring and autumn. Some of these seasons are favourable to man while others are harsh. These seasons are associated with different conditions. Among theseconditions is drought. Have you ever experienceda drought condition? What practices do the members of your community perform to ward off the drought? You will realize that most communities offer sacrifices and prayers to their ancestors and other creatures besides Allah(S.W.T). This is shirk and is totally forbidden in Islam.In the event of a drought, Islam prescribes a special prayer to be performed. This prayer is referred to as Swalatul Istisqa’a, which isA two rakaat congregational prayer is offered.
Anas (RA) narrated that, “The messenger of Allah supplicated Allah for rain and he pointed with the back of his hand to the sky.” (Muslim)
There are two Eid prayers which are performed in two different ocasions;
- a) Idd-ul Fitr: It is a two rakaat prayer performed to mark the end of the month of Ramadhan.
- b) Idd-ul Adha: It is a two rakaat prayerperformed on the tenth of Dhul Hijja to mark the end of
the activities of Hajj.
Aisha (R.A) narrated that, the messenger of Allah said, “Breaking the fast at the end of Ramadhan is
(determined) when people break their fast and Idd ul Adha (the Idd of sacrifice)is determined when
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people offer their sacrifices.” (At-Tirmidhy)
Swalatul JanaizaFuneral Prayer:
Can you recall one of the fardh al kifaya prayers which must be performed by at least one Muslim in the community? Salatul Janazah is Fardh Kafayah, that is, if one performs the prayer then all are free of the responsiblity. Jamma (congregation) is not a condition for this prayer as it is sufficient even if one person prays.This is a prayer performed for the dead. When a muslim passes on, it is the responsibility of those who are around him during the time of his or her death to wash the body and pray for it.On the prayer of Janaiza, Aisha (R.A) narrated, “By Allah, the messenger of Allah offered funeral prayer in mosque for the sons of Baida’ (Sahl and suhail).” [Muslim]
There are two parts of this Prayer:
To say Allahu Akbar
Qiyam, which has three sunna Muaqada:Sana, Durood and Duaa for the deceased
How to perform swalatul Janaza
- Niyyat: The performer should make the intention, “I make the niyyat for the prayer of this
janaza for Allah, duaa for this deceased, behind this imam.”
- Takbiratul-Ihram: The perfomers shouldraise their hands to their ears and fold their hands
underneath the navel as usual whilst saying Allahu Akbar and read Sana,
Glory be to You Oh Allah, and praise be to You, and blessed is Your name, and exalted is Your Majesty, and there is none to be served besides You.
- Then raise the hands, say Allahu Akbar and read the duroode Ibraheem; Duroode Ibraheemi:
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O Allah! Shower Your mercy upon Muhammad and the followers of Muhammad, as You showered
Your mercy upon Ibrahim and the followers of Ibrahim. Behold, You are Praiseworthy, Glorious.
Oh Allah! Shower Your blessing upon Muhammad, and the followers of Muhammad as You showered Your blessings upon Ibrahim and the followers of Ibrahim. Behold, You are Praiseworthy,
- Then raise the hands, say Allahu Akbar and read the duaa.
Duaa for an adult man or woman:
Oh Allah! Forgive those of us that are alive and those of us that are dead; those of us that are present
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and those of us who are absent; those of us who are young and those of us who are adults; our males and our females. Oh Allah! Whomsoever You keep alive let him live as a follower of Islam and whomsoever You cause to die, let him die a Believer.
Duaa for a boy:
Oh! Allah, make him (this child) a source for our salvation and make him a source of reward and treasure for us and make him an intercessor for us and one whose intercession is accepted.
Duaa for a girl:
Oh! Allah, make her (this child) a source for our salvation and make her a source of reward and treasure for us and make her an intercessor for us and one whose intercession is accepted.
- After the duaa, say Allahu Akbar, drop the hands and then turn the head both sides for salaam.
Demonstration of a worshipper in the sujuud position.
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Read [Q 7:206]; [Q:19:58];[Q:25:60];[Q:32:15];[Q:84:21]
Can you identify one thing that is common in all the verses you have read? It s evident that all these verses mention the word sijdah.Sijadah is a very important act of worship in the life of a muslim and that is why several verse of the Quran that mention it. You will also observe that sijdah is part of the obligatory steps in swalat.
Sijda is an act ofworship which involvesprostration and glorification where by the fore head, palms and the knees firmly touch the ground facing the direction of the Qibla.
Narrated al-Bara’ bin A-zib (R.A) that the messenger of Allah said, “Whenever you prostrate place the palms of your hand (on the ground) and raise your elbows.” (Muslim)
Types of Sijdats
Besides sijda during swalat, there are other three types of Sijdat namely:-
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Earlier in this section, we have learnt that there are several verses in the Quran that mention the word
sijda.What do you do when you come across these verses? Definitely you will have to pause and
prostrate then continue with your recitation. This prostration is what is referred to as Tilawa.
There are fourteen places of prostration in the Holy Quran as agreed upon by all the Muslim religious
scholars, while Imam Shafi suggests prostration at Quran 22:77 to make them a total of fifteen.
Allah says in the Quran, “But fall ye down in prostration to Allah and adore Him.”[Q 53:62]
Ibn Abbas(RA)narrated , “the messenger of Allah prostrated when he recited suratul Najm[Q: 13]” Quotation of verses in the quran that require prostration
NAME OF NUMBER OF NUMBER OF THE WORD
SURAH SURAH VERSE
Al-A’raf 7 206 WalahuYasjuduuna
Ar-Rad 13 15 Walillaahi yasjudu
An -Nahl 16 49 Walillaahi yasjudu
Al-Isra 17 107 Yakhirruuna
lil adhqaani sujjadaa
Mary am 19 58 Kharruu sujjadan
Al-Hajj 22 18 Yasjudu lahu
Al-Hajj 22 77* Wasjuduu wa’buduu
Al-Furqaan 25 60 Wa idha qiila
An-Naml 27 25 Al-la yasjuduu lillaahi
As-Sajda 32 15 Kharruu sujjadan
Sad 38 24 Kharraraaki’an
Fussilat 41 37 Wasjuduu lillaahi
An-Najm 53 62 fasjuduu lillaahi
Al-Inshiqaq 84 21 Laa yasjuduun
Al Alaq 96 19 Wasjud
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Human beings have a tendancy of frogeting. At times we forget and even skip certain steps during the performance of swalat. In such an eventuality, what do you do?
Whenever a worshipper omits by forgetting to perform an important pillar of swalat (Arkanu swalat) he is supposed to perform sijdatu-Sahwi(prostration for forgetfulness)
This type of sijda is usually performed in swalat before the first salaam and just like the ordinary
prostration.For example, if one forgets to perfor the ruku’,or sijdah or any other pillar of swalat.
Imran bin al-Hussein (R.A) narrated the messenger of Allah led them in prayer and forgot (to do something) so he made two prostrations and recited the tashahud and then said the Tasleem. (Abu Dawoud and At-Tirmidhy)
Muslims should always be grateful and thankful to Allah (S.W.T) Prostration is one of the ways of
showing gratitude to Allah (S.W.T). This type of sijda is performed for the purposes of showing ones
gratefulness and appreciation towards Allah after attaining any good thing e.g. passing of
examinations, getting a new born babysit is a way of thanking Allah.It can be performed in any place
that is clean.
Abu Bakar (R.A) narrated, “Whenever the prophet received something which pleased him,he would
make the Sajda in gratitude to Allah” (Related by the six Imams except An-Nasai)
Meaning of zakat
Every society will have people who are well off and those who need assistance. Have you met
people who may be friends, relatives, neighbours or even strangers and they needed your help? How
did you react to their request? In many cases, every society will have its own way of dealing with
such situations. Islam as a complete way of life has not been left behind. The plight of the poor and
the needy has been well taken care of by the institution of Zakat. It is one of the major religious
dutiesand the third pillar in Islam.Zakat was made obligatory on Ummahs of all prophets even before
Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) this is evident when we look into the Holy Quran where we see that
from ancient times Salah and Zakat were ordained as compulsory.For example, there is mentioning
about Prophet Ibraham and the Prophets of his race when Allah says in the Quran:
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“And We made them leaders of men. They guided the people according to Our command, and We inspired in them the doing of good deeds and right establishment of Salah and giving of Zakat and they were worshippers of Us.” [Q: 21:73]
About Prophet Ismael it is said:
“He enjoined upon his people Salah and Zakat and was acceptable in the sight of his Lord.” [Q: 19:55]
Prophet Moses prayed for his ummah:
“O God! Bestow upon us the well-being of this world as also the well-being of the Hereafter.”
Do you know in reply to it what Allah answered?
“I shall smite with my punishment whom I will. Although My mercy embraced all things, but I shall ordain it for those who will fear Me and give Zakat and those who will believe in Our revelations.”[Q: 7:156]
“And Allah said:‘O Children of Israel! I am with you, if you offer Salah, and give Zakat and
believe in My messengers and support those messengers who are to come, and lend unto Allah a nice loan surely I shall remit your sins.’”[Q: 5:12]
Before Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) the last Prophet was Prophet Issa. The commandment about Salah and Zakat was given to him also by Allah, as is found in Suratul-Mariam:
“And hath made me blessed wheresoever I may be, and hath enjoined upon me Salah and Zakat so long as I remain alive.” [Q: 19:31)
This shows that the religion of Islam has been established from the beginning, in the ministry of every prophet, on the two great pillars of Salah and Zakat, and it never happened that any Ummah believing in Allah (S.W.T) was exempted from these two obligatory duties.
Let us now define Zakat.
Literally the term Zakat is Arabic word which means both ‘purification’ and ‘growth’. It refers to the
purification of a believer’swealth and soul. Wealth purification denotes the mobilization of assets for
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the purpose of financial growth and justified distribution. Purification of the soul implies freedom from hatred, jealousy, selfishness, uneasiness and greed. Almighty Allah (S.W.T) says, “And be steatfast in prayer; practice regular charity; and bow down your heads with those who bow down (in worship).”[Q: 2:43]
Technically, it involves distributing a portion of one’s wealth to those prescribed by the Quran. OtherQuranic connotations also include the purification of sin.It is one of the most important principles of Islam andthe third pillar.
Allah (S.WT) says, “And they have been commanded No more than this: To worship Allah, Offering Him sincere devotion, being true in (faith); to establish regular prayers; And to practice regular charity; and that is the religion Right and Straight.”[Q: 98:5]
There are three types of Zakat namely; Zakatul Maal, Zakatul-Fifr and Sadaqa.
Zakat-ul-Maal is the obligatory charity paid by an individual to the needy from the property which
he possesses. It is obligatory on an individual who possesses wealth equal toor above a minimum
amount called Nisab for an entire lunar year. Forthe purpose of calculating Zakat, different
categories of wealth are defined,this shall be demonstrated by the table (on page ) on
specific items on which Zakat is payable.
In terms of Islamic jurisprudence (Fiqh), Zakatul-Maal is an obligatory duty (Fardh) on every
Muslim possessing wealth equal toor exceeding the prescribed amount ofNisab. It is a
prescribedwelfare-contribution from one’s stored wealth. It is the right of Allah (S.W.T) on a
Muslim’s wealth. Paying Zakat-ul-Maal is the responsibility of theowner. If one fails to carry out this
obligation, he is a sinner, consequently incurring Allah’s displeasureand His punishment in the
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Zakatu-ul-Fitr is Zakat on the individual. It is a special charity paid to the needy onor before the day of Eid -ul-Fitr, which is the first day of the month ofShawwal following the month of Ramadhan. Zakat-ul-Fitr is paid asatonement for any shortcomings in the worship of Fasting during the month of Ramadan.
On the day of Eid -ul-Fitr, which marks the completion of the month ofRamadhan, every Muslim possessing an amount of food in excess of his family’s need for a day (24 hours) is mandated to pay Zakat-ul-Fitr on his own behalf and for all his dependent(s).Zakat-ul-Fitr or Fitrah is “the one full meal per person or cash equivalent to the cost of one full meal, given directly to the needy ofthe community before Eid-ul-Fitr prayer. Arrangements for payingFitrah should be made ahead of time so that it reaches the eligiblerecipients in time for them to make use of it on Eid day. The quantity ofZakat-ul-Fitr traditionally amounts to one Sa`, which is equivalent to 21/2kilograms of food such as wheat, barley, rice, or the like.
Ibn Abbas (RA) narrated that, “The messenger of Allah (P.B.U.H) enjoined Zakatul Fitr on the one who fasts in the month of Ramadhan to purify him from any indecent act or speech and for the purpose of providing food fortheneedy… (Abu aawoud and Ibn Ma’jah)
Sadaqah is an Arabic term widely used to cover all kinds of charity.
Although Sadaqah and Zakat are often used interchangeably, Sadaqah implies voluntary charity and is not limited to giving out money or food.
All good deeds are considered Sadaqah and are rewarded by Allah (S.W.T)These even include practices that may look simple such as removing a thorn from the path,helping the old to cross a busy road among othersEvery Muslim is exhorted togive Sadaqah.
The Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) said:“Every Muslim has to give Sadaqah.” The people asked: “OProphet of Allah, what about the one who has nothing?”Hereplied: “He should work with his hand to giveSadaqah.” They asked: “If he cannot find (work)?” Hereplied: “He should help the needy who ask for help.” Theyasked:“If he cannot do that?” He replied: “He should then do good deeds and shun evil, for this will be taken asSadaqah.”(Sahih al-Bukhari)
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Muslims practice charity and earn rewards from Allah (S.W.T) by doing good deeds all their
lives.They can continue earning Allah’s rewards even after their death.This is called perpetual
Sadaqah(sadaqatul-Jariyah) Abu Hurayra (R.A) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (P.B.U.H) said,
“When the son of Adam dies, his actions are cut off except for three: Sadaqah Jariyah (on-going
charity), knowledge which brought benefit, and a virtuous son who makes supplication for him.”
Sadaqah Jariyah means Continuous Alms/Charity. A continuous charity is an action that someone does that remains active even after the person is dead. For example, if a person digs a well then people can use it for a very long time – even after the person dies. This type of charity is very effective and serves better than just giving money as the person who initiated the action will get thawab even after he dies.
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ZAKAT AND SADAQAH
Zakat is a pillar of Islam
Zakat has a nisab- (the minimum amount one must have before it becomes compulsory.)
There is a fixed amount to be paid on the saved money or cash.
Zakat is paid on specific and particular items.
There is fixed period within which one must pay Zakat.
Zakat is payable to specific recipients mentioned in the Quran.
Sadaqah is an act of charity.
Sadaqah has no minimum amount.
Any amount can be given as sadaqa.
Sadaqah is paid on anything one wish to give from.
Sadaqah can be paid at any time.
Sadaqah can be given to any person in need whether a Muslim or a non Muslim.
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Zakat is compulsory to the Muslims who Sadaqah is voluntary to whoever wishes to give it.
qualify to pay it.
Conditions for zakat payment
Even though payment of Zakat is a must to the able Muslims, certain conditions have to be observed. These include the following:
- One paying it must be a Muslim.
- One must be a free man and not a slave.
iii. One must be of sound mind (sane.)
- The giver of Zakat must have attained maturity.
- The wealth to be paid should have reached nisab.
- The wealth or property must have been in ones possession for a full year.
vii. Zakat-ul- Fitr should be paid before one goes for the Eid prayers.
Differences between Zakat-ul-Fitr and Zakat-ul-Maal
1 The wealth must have been in
Possession for one year.
2 The rate should be calculated
according to the property to be
3 It should be given to recipient
prescribed in the Quran.
4 One may also give in the form
It should be given in the month of Ramadhan before one goes for Idd Prayers.
It should be given on 21/2 kg of the staple food
It can be given to any needy or destitute Muslim
This must represent the exact equivalent of the
market value of the kind and quality of the staple
food which would have otherwise been offered. e.g.
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cash, animals,minerals,fruits among others.
5 The nisab depends on the
amount of wealth.
6 It purifies wealth
7 It is given at any time of the
year when it is due.
The value is determined by the number of
dependants in the family.
It purifies saum
Given only in the month of Ramadhan
Condition for distribution of zakat
During the distribution of Zakat, it is very important that it is done according to the sharia.The following conditions should be considered:
- The intention (Niyyat) should be for the sake of fulfilling Allah’s command and not for
any other reasons.
- It should be given to the recipients prescribed by the Quran.
- It should be given promptly, when it is due.
- Zakat of one place should not be transferred to another place.
- The item payable for Zakat should not be exchanged for another item. For example it is
permisable to use the nisab for animals when you are supposed to pay zakat for
mineralsbut one can convert the cows into currency and then a rate of the currency is
given out for Zakat.
Items on which zakat is payable
- Domestic animals such as camels, sheep, oxen which are not kept as articles of trade.
- Agricultural produce such crops and fruits of the field like wheat, barley, dates, raisins,
rice, maize and vegetables.
- Gold, silver and other mineral products.
- Dug out treasures whose ownership has not been identified for one year.
- Trade and merchandise(goods for trade)
- Savings from the sale of goods should be paid for Zakatafter a year.
- Savings from the house rent and land rates.
- Personal income.
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INSERT NISAB RATES FROM INTERNET
Items on which Zakat is not payable
Even though Zakat is an obligatory Pillar in Islam and that one has to pay,there are certain items which a Muslim is not supposed to give.These items include the following:
- Private houses in which the owner dwells in.
- Animals used for transportation.
- Furniture, clothing Weapons or tools for daily use.
- Books which are not for sale.
- Jewellery or ornaments which have not reached nisab.
- Machinery used for manufacture of goods.
(d)Recipients of Zakat
There are those people whom the Quran has singled out to be the rightful beneficiaries of Zakat.The Quran has identified a list of deserving persons to whom Zakat should be given.
Allah says“Alms are for the poor and the needy, and those employed to administer the ( funds); For those whose hearts have been recently reconciled to the truth; and for those in bondage and in debt; in the course of Allah; and for the wayfarer:”(Thus is it) ordained by Allah, and Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom.”[Q: 9:60]
According to the above verse the recipients of Zakat are as follows:
- The poor(Fuqara)
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These are the Muslims who do not have any means of livelihood and material possession to support themselves and their families.
- The needy(Masaakin)
These are the Muslims who lack sufficient means of livelihood to meet their basic
- Zakat collectors(Aamil)
They are the Muslims who have been entrusted with the responsibility of collecting and
distributing Zakat.They receive it as their source of income.
- The new converts(Mualaf)
They are also referred to as sympathizers. They are the people who have just embraced
Islam and need help to settle down and strengthen their faith.
- The captives(Riqab)
These are prisoners of war or hostages who need to be ransomed in order to secure their
These are Muslims who have incurred debts through halal transactions. Zakat can be used
to pay off there debts which they incurred to meettheir basic needs.
- Those on the course of Allah(Fisabillillah)
Zakat can be used to finance any form of struggle or course for the love of Allah (S.W.T)
such as aa’wa.sponsering students educational expence among others.
- The wayfarers(Ibnu Sabil)
These are stranded travelers on lawful journey who are in difficulty and may need
assistance to cater for their travel and basic needs.
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Importance of Zakat.
Allah (S.WT) has prescribed the pillars in Islam for the benefit of humankind. These benefits
include social, spiritual and even economical. Let us now look at the importance of Zakat.
Spiritual Importance of Zakat.
- A believer gets rewards by fulfilling this third pillar of Islam.
- It is a commandment of Allah (S.W.T)and therefore must be observed by every Muslim who
qualifies to give it.
- Giving of Zakat purifies the wealth of the giver.
- It blesses the wealth of the giver.
- The institution of Zakat enables one to fulfill his religious obligation.
- Develops spiritual growth and piety.
- Creates good relationship between the giver and receiver.
- Remove jealously/ mistrust of the rich.
- Restores hope, dignity and worthiness of the poor.
- Reduces the gap between the rich and poor
- Develops and fosters a healthy social relationship among members of the community.
- Removes pride, selfishness or greed among rich.
- Job creation for the Zakat collectors who secure employment.
- Fighting corruption
- Clearing debts of citizens
10.It helps foster equality among the Muslims.
11.Promotes unity and brotherhood among the Muslim Ummah.
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12.It fosters love among the Muslims.
- Zakat Helps raise living standards of the poor less, fortunate and the marginalized
- It helps the poor and needy by relieving their hardships and troubles.
- Helps create a self supporting community which does not require financial or
economic assistance in form of food or material. This enables the Muslim
communityto be self reliant and independent.
- Zakat contributes to the national budget as it is a form of tax.
- It helps in the creation of job and employment opportunities.
- Those in debt are able to settle them from the Zakat.
- Zakat assists in improving the economy in the society by creating job opportunities
for example the Zakatcollectors and distributors, clearance of debts and establishment
of social amenities.
Differences between Zakat and Tax
It is the third pillar of Islam
It is only paid annually
The rate of Zakat is fixed till the day of judgment.
It is a commandment of Allah (S.W.T) Q2: 110
It is a law of the government or rather the policies of state
It can be paid monthly, weekly, daily or even hourly.
Its rate keeps fluctuating or rather it is
determined by the amount of income one
It is authorized by the government, King or the ruler of the state.
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It is payable on one’s saving
It is rewarded by Allah and therefore cannot be evaded
It is calculated from the gross salary or
It is rewarded by the state ruler or government hence one is fined for not giving it out.
The role played by Zakat in promoting integrity.
Zakat plays a very important role in the promotion of integrity in the society through the following ways:
1) It enhances the sense of responsibility in that the giverfeels obliged to perform the acts as an
obligatory duty upon him.
2) It also promotes loyalty which is an aspect of integrity. The giver shows loyalty to Allah who
has commanded those with wealth to give it in charity. Zakat has been mentioned eighty two
(82) times in the Quran.
3) It assists in curbing vices such as theft, by regulating the owning of resources in the society
and creating a balance.
4) Giving of Zakat helps in minimizing vices such as jealousy and envy in that the receiver feels
satisfied when he is given the share from it. And to the giver it reduces extravagance and
greed for wealth.
5) It encourages hard work because every Muslim has an incentive to work since he is expected
to give something to the needy and earn thawab.
6) Zakat reduces injustices such as unfair distribution of wealth in that only the rightful
recipients are given.
7) Zakat promotes unity in the society by bringing together both the rich and the poor.
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Suggested study Questions andActivities.
Answer the following questions in your I.R.E revision exercise book.
- a)Describe the performance of Sijdatul Tilawa, Sijdatul Shukr and Sijdatul Sahw.
b)Identify the various methods of purification
2.a)Give the acts which invalidate wudhu.
b)Discuss the significance of shahada in the life of a Muslim.
3.a) Give the differences between Zakat-ul Fitr and Zakat-ul maal. b)Expalin the items on which Zakat is payable.
- Demonstrate the performance of udhu and identify the Sunnah acts.
- Demonstrate the performance of swalatul Janaza.
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Akhlaq refers to the standard behaviour or code of conduct which an individual is expected to uphold or observe according to his or her society. Therefore Islamic morality refers to the code of conduct prescribed by the Quran and Hadith which a Muslim is expected to adhere to
The Islamic moral system stems from its primary creed of belief in One God as the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. Islam considers the human race to be a part of aod’s creation, and as His subjects. From an Islamic perspective, the purpose of human life is to worship God, by leading this worldly life in harmony with the Divine Will, and thereby achieving peace in this world, and everlasting success in the life of the hereafter. Muslims look to the Glorious Quran and the Traditions of the Prophet as their moral guides.Morality in Islam addresses every aspect of a Muslim life, from greetings to international relations. Muslims must not only be morally healthy, but also contribute to the moral health of the entire society.
The almighty Allah says:“You are the best of the nations raised up for (the benefit of) men; you enjoin what is right and forbid the wrong and believe in God; and if the followers of the book had believed it would have been better for them; of them(some) are believers and most of them are transgressors.”[Q: 3:110]
The prophet (P.B.U.H) summarized the conduct of a Muslim when he said:
“My Sustainer has given me nine commands: to remain conscious of Allah, whether in private or in public; to speak justly, whether angry or pleased; to show moderation both when poor and when rich, to reunite friendship with those who have broken off with me; to give to him who refuses me; that my silence should be occupied with thought; that my looking should be an admonition; and that I should command what is right.”
The alorious Qur’an says:
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“It is not righteousness that ye turn your faces Towards east or West; but it is righteousness- to believe in Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and the Messengers; to spend of your substance, out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; to be steadfast in prayer, and practice regular charity; to fulfill the contracts which ye have made; and to be firm and patient, in pain (or suffering) and adversity, and throughout all periods of panic. Such are the people of truth, the Allah-fearing.”[Q: 2:177]
This verse emphasizes the Islamic belief that righteousness and piety is based on a true and sincerefaith. The key to virtue and good conduct is a strong relation with God, who sees all, at all times and everywhere. He knows the secrets of the hearts and the intentions behind all actions. Therefore, Islam enjoins moral behavior in all circumstances.It may be possible to deceive the world, but it’s not possible to deceive the r reator.
Morality in Islam centers on certain basic beliefs and principles as follows:
- a) Allah (S.W.T) is the creator and source of all goodness, truth and beauty.
- b) Man is a responsible, dignified and honorable agent of his Creator.
- c) Allah (SW.T) has put everything in the heavens and the earth in the service of
- d) By His Mercy and Wisdom, Allah (S.W.T) does not expect the impossible from man
or hold him accountable for anything beyond his power. Nor does Allah (S.W.T)
forbid man to enjoy the good things of life.
- e) Moderation, practicality and balance are guarantees of high integrity and sound
- f) All things are permissible in principle except what is singled out as obligatory, which
must be observed and what is singled out as forbidden, which must be avoided.
- g) Man’s ultimate responsibility is to Allah (S.W.T) and his highest goal is the pleasure
of his Creator.
Dimensions of Islamic morality
In the beginning of this chapter, we have learnt that Akhlaq involves moral values and that Allah (S.W.T) always wants us to lead a pious life.
Islamic morality is measured in two ways: Maarufat (virtues) and Munkaraat (vices)
It entirely deals with the relationship between man and the other and creatures of the universe, man
and his innermost self. The Muslim’s relationship with Allah (S.W.T) should be one of love and
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obedience, complete trust, stead fastness and active devotion;it is this kind of behaviour that should inspire and nourish morality at the human level.
In relating to his fellow men, a Muslim should show kindness, care and respect to relatives, neighbours and strangers whatever their status in the society. He must also honor the legitimate rights of others as much as he fulfills his own.
A Muslim should also use nature for the benefit of humanity as signs of Allaah (S.W.T) without waste of humility as signs of Allaah (S.W.T) without waste or excess.
A Muslims moral obligation is also to stand for what is right and fight what is wrong, seek what is
true and abandon what is false, uphold what is wrong, seek what is beautiful and wholesome and
avoid what is indicent.To him, simplicity and compassion are his trademarks, while he keeps away
from arrogance and pride. A man once asked the prophet (S.W.T) on virtues and he replied.
“Ask your heart. Virtue is that which satisfies the soul and comforts the heart, And sin (evil), is that which perturbs the soul and troubles the heart even if people should pronounce it lawful.”(Ahmed &Dearani)
Islamic morality (Akhlaaq is divided into two dimensions
(a) Maarofoat (The Virtues )
(b) Munkaraat (The vices )
- a) Maaroofaat [the virtues]
These are deeds or practices which are permitted in Islam.They couldbe in the form of actions
gestures or statement. A Muslims is encouraged to acquire these virtues. The Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) said: “The most perfect amongst you in faith is the best of you in behavior.”
Examples of Maarufat
(i) Visiting the sick and escorting the deceased to the grave.
(ii) Feeding the poor.
(iii) Honoring the aged.
(iv) Trustworthiness: Muslims have to be people who keep their words in any promise,
contracts among others.
(v) Having contentment [Qanaa]or satisfaction with whatever Allah[sw] has decreed for
(vi) Self control
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(ix) Trust in responsibility
Mention other things that are classified as maarufat.
b)Munkaraat [the vices]
These are all kinds of bad practices or deeds that are prohibited in Islam. These vices can be in the form of actions gestures or statements. Allah (S.W.T) has prohibited all forms of Munkaraat whether practiced in the open or in secrecy.
Allah (S.W.T) says: “Say: The things that May Lord has indeed forbidden are: Shameful deeds
,whether open or secret; sins and trespasses against truth or reason; assigning of partners to Allah, for which He Has given no authority and saying things about Allah of which you have no knowledge.”[Q: 7:33]
Examples of Munkaraat
(i) Arrogance and pride.
(ii) Slander and gossips.
(iii) Telling lies.
(iv) Calling one another by offensive nicknames.
(v) Dissatisfaction and lack of contentment.
(vi) Looking down upon others because, class or wealth, race etc.
(vii) Wishful thinking.
(viii) Drug and substance abuse.
(ix) Gambling and games of chances.
(x) All forms of sexual perversions.
Significance of Islamic morality
Islamic morality is intended to build in a Muslim a sound mind, peaceful soul and a strong personality.
Islamic morality is meant to build in the human being a sound mind and body and a
It makes a Muslim have a distinctive Islamic personality when interacting with others. Islamic moral values are meant to cultivate in a Muslim the best character in the most
whole some manner.
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It strengthensthe bonds between human beings and Allah thus developing a strong taqwa. Islamic morality guards the Muslims external behaviors and his manifest deeds to be in
line with Allah (S.W.T) the teachings of Islam.
It shields a Muslims from evil since it guards his external behavior and his manifest
deeds to be in line with Allah(S.W.T)
It promotes positive thinking by guiding individual Muslims to be occupied with
constructive ideas and serious pursuits of how to lead a positive life on this earth and the
It discourages a Muslimfrom practicing prohibitions such as use of intoxicants.
The Munkaraat have been prohibited by Allah (S.W.T) for the spiritual and mental well
being of man as well as for the moral and material benefit of humanity.
It promotes peace and harmony in the society in that the prohibitions discourage vices. It generates affection and respect between the members of the family and the society in
general hence promoting brotherhood.
Allah has promised rewards for those who abide by the Islamic morals and avoid evils
Amr bil Ma’ruf Wa Nahyi Anil Munkar. (Enjoining good and forbidding evil)
Allah (S.W.T) commanded Muslims to always enjoin good and forbid evil in the
society.Commanding of good should start with self-restrain. This means avoidance of those acts
which displease Allah.Beinga practical religion, Islam teaches the Muslimsto strive to follow the religious teachings and abide by its code of conduct and ethics.
Allah says, “Let there arise in you a band of people inviting to all that is good,enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong:They arethe ones to attain felicity.”[Q: 3:104]
The prophet (P.B.U.H) also emphasize on the importance of morals in a hadith reported by Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri who says that the messenger of Allah says, “He of you who sees an abomination should change it with his hand; if he could not, then with his tongue; if he could not, then in his heart; and this is the faintest in faith.” (Muslim)
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Islam is a complete way of life and a very practical religion.Even though it isenshrined in laws, beliefs and practices, morals form the basis of each and every act of Ibada’. For exampleIslam prohibits the use of intoxicants as they interfere with normal functioning of the body and mind hence one cannot attend to his religious duties.
It isalso very important to keep off evil so that we can preserve the purity of the soul and have it more concentrated on performing ibadah.Muslims should keep reminding each other of the good things expected from them and talk about the evil things and howthey can avoid them.And Allah tells us in the Quran, “And remind, for indeed, the reminder benefits the believers.”
What benefits do you get as a Muslim when you practice and remind each other of good deeds?
On the other hand,the soul of the human being is very subtle to temptations which arise from weaknesses to remain firm and steadfast in the path of Allah.The environment we stay in may also affect our morals and divert us from the good path.If for example you walk with friends who smoke,you need a very strong conviction and Iman(faith)so that you are not tempted to smoke.But in as much as you may not be smoking,it is your religious duty to command good and forbid evil.Therefore you should remind your friend of the evils of smoking.
There are various ways in which a Muslim can command well and shun evil. Examples of such ways are; observing the five daily prayers, fasting during the month of Ramadhan, speaking the truth, visiting the sick, giving out charity,advising those doing the wrong among others.
Would you wish to be among the successful on the Day of Judgment? What are the things you need to in order to attain this success?
Morality based on iman and swalihat
The good morals of anybody are shaped by the faith that he possesses and the dutifulness towards his creator. Surat ul Asr supports that:
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“I swear by the time (Asr) surely man is in great loss, save those who believe and perform good
deeds and exhort each other on truth and exhort each other to endurance[Q:103:1-3].
Iman thus takes the first preference before good deeds. Good deeds that are not accompanied with
Iman are known to have no reward before Allah. Consider those who do good things just to be seen
and praised, the corrupt people who do good things in exchange of various favors not to mention the
philanthropists who give a lot of wealth for pleasure without bringing the intention of doing it for the
sake of Allah. Such deeds usually may lead to actions that are forbidden according to the doctrine of
Obedience of Allah’s commandments leads to righteous deeds in that in order for you to perform them, you should first fear Allah. Iman and Swalihat cannot be separated because they are interdependent in their functioning. Therefore in Islam, faith and good deeds go hand in hand.
Abu Said Al-Khudri (R.A) narrates that he heard the prophet (P.B.U.H) says: Whenever anyone of sees anything contrary to Allah’s approval, he should change it with his hand, or if he cannot, then by his tongue, if he cannot, then by his heart and that is the weakest faith.”
Suggested revision Questions and class activities.
Answer the following questions in your I.R.E revision exercise books.
- Explain the basic principles of Islamic morality.
- Discuss the significance of commanding good and forbidding evil. Activity
Identify the common vices you see being practiced in your neighbourhood.Suggest ways of stopping them.
Every living creation of Allah (S.W.T) belongs to a specific family. The idea of a family can be well
understood if we bear in mind our surrounding environment. Let us take an example of a busy city
during the day. Busy with men,women and children, moving all over.Inthe evening, during the rush
hours, you will see everyone getting into a matatu and the streets will remain empty. Where do all
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these people go to? Ask yourself why they can’t remain in the streets until the next day. They must go and look for shelter, company, a good meal among other needs which are provided for within this social institution we call a family.
We now have an idea idea about what a family is. Can youmention the people who constitute a family?A family according to Islam isasocial institutionwhereby members are united by the same ethical values hence have responsibilities over one another.This bond starts right from marriage and includes but not limited to all the relations from either sides of the married couples. Are there any other people who may not be staying with you but are part of your family? In Islam the concept of a family stretches far beyond the father, mother and children.The following three factors keep peopletogether and united in an Islamic society:
Ø Kingship and blood ties-it involves the father /mother- child relations, brother-sister among
others these are the strongest natural ties. It determines how members relatewith one another
thus controlling their behavior. It binds together the family and assists people to live
Ø Marital commitment-It includes husband-wife relations,the in-laws of either side. This helps
to keep the family together in that each member has defined roles to play.
Ø Faith-It is the main binding factor which enhances the achievement of family goals and
interests. It goes beyond the close relatives to include all the Muslims who are brothers and
sisters. We should therefore be ready to accommodate our fellow Muslims when they need
our help since they form part of the larger Muslim family.
Importance of the family
We have seen who comprise of a family.These entiremembers are kept together by a common goal which should be directed towards benefitting the entire society. The things done within the smaller unit of the society, which is the family, will have either direct or indirect impact to all the members of the community.Let us look at the importance of the family:
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Provide room for procreation to enhance the widening of the larger society.Being a very
important unit of the society,procreation forms part of the responsibilities of those who get
married to ensure continuity of the lineage and general growth of the society.
A family serves as strong founding unit or rather the first school for the children where the
values habit and rites are passed to the children, preparing them to fit in the wider society.
The children need to therefore allow their parents and other family members to give them
guidance and ask for their advice.
A family offers security needs and provides a sense of belonging and identity in that it bonds
an individual to a respective family giving him/her confidence.
A family serves as a foundation stone to the society. A family is founded through marriage
which promotes interfamily alliance through matrimonial relation. It brings people of
different social status and race together hence removing social prejudice in the society.
A family acts as barometer to regulate the moral conduct of certain individuals in the society.
Thiscontributes topeace and harmonious as it provides a set of rules to be observed e.g.
marriage shields indecency.
A family promotes a sense of responsibility in that each member has specific roles to play in
order to achieve the goals of the family for example; the husband is responsible for
livelihood of his family while the wife has to fulfillthe functions as motherhoodsuch as child
upbringing and household chores.
A family is a source of stability to the society, in thatstable families producemembers who fit
well in the wider society.
The family serves as a learning institution.Children brought up in family are taught Islamic
morals, values, norms and traditions by the parents. The knowledge learnt during the
formative years is peculiar to the home environment. It happens that children brought up
from different environment swillend up with different moral behavior. This is due to the
socialization skills taught in individual families or the moral and traditional practices that
may be seen in the two environments.Are ther things that you learnt in your childhood and
are different from your friend’s? Mention some of them.
Definition of Marriage (Nikah)
What is marriage? Nikah is an Arabic term used for marriage which means a contract. Marriage is a
mutual contract or legal union between a man and a woman, sane and mature who have expressed
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their willingness to stay as a husband and wife in order to become a pious family and a society. The contract must be guided by the Quran and Sunnah of the prophet (P.B.U.H)
Marriage in Islam
Marriage is a vital part of a Muslim’s life. In fact marriage is so important in Islam that it is declared to be a half of a Muslim’s faith. As a Muslim one should live in accordance with the Islamic Jurisprudence in the way shown by the Holy Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H).
Allah (S.W.T) says,“Marry those among you who are single or the virtuous ones among your slaves male or female: if they are in poverty, Allah will give them means out of His grace: for Allah encompasses all, and He knows all things.”[Q: 24:32]
One can see from the above verse that the Creator of mankind has ordered us to marry.The Prophet married and also encouraged others to marry
Ibn Mas’ud (R.A) narrated that the messenger of Allah (h.B.U.H) said to us, “O young people! Whoever can marry among you should marry, for that will help him lower his gaze and protect his chastity. Whoever is not able to marry is recommended to fast and that will be his shield.” (Bukhari and Muslim)
Purpose of marriage
The basic objectives of marriage in Islam are:
To fulfill Allah’s (S.W.T) command.Marriage is a commandment from Allah (S.W.T) which must therefore be fullfilled by every Muslim who is able. It isconsidered as completing half of ones religion and we therefore earn Allah’s rewards.
Secondly, marriage secures a comfortable atmosphere for boththe husband and the wife.A Muslim
couple who follow the teachings of the Holy Quran willalways be a source of comfort for each other.
Their relationship should go beyond that of mere sexual enjoyment and should be based on a cordial
friendship accompanied by mutual understanding.The Holy Quran says: “One of His signs is that
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He created for you spouses of your own species, so that you might find comfort with them. And He put mutual love and affection in your hearts. Surely in this there are lessons for the thinking people.” [Q: 30:21]
The other purpose is for procreation. Through marriage,a new generation of healthy, faithful and virtuous children isborn. The family is the school for morals.The Holy Prophet (P.BU.H) said. “As soon as a suitor, who is religious and who has manners that satisfy you comes to you asking for a matrimonial alliance, take action to join in marriage with him. If you do not do so, you will have deviated from the right path and may be faced with a great crisis.”
It ensures financial competence in the community. A Muslim man must provide means of living to his wife and children, even if the wife is wealthy or earns a salary.
The fourth reason is for companionship. Marriage provides close interaction between the man and the woman in mutual sharing of responsibilities and ideas. This relationship makes the husband and the wife to live together harmoniously. For example, in our homes our parents consult each other on matters related to our welfare like paying of our school fees, buying of our cloths among other responsibilities.
Marriage helps to safeguard one’s Iman (faith). It prevents one from committing immoral acts. Sins such as intermingling with members of the opposite sex or having sexual relations outside marriage are not acceptable in Islam because it creates immorality and immodesty.
It promotes inter-family alliance. Through marriage, family ties are strengthened between the
families of the couple who become relatives. This promotes peace, harmony and friendship in the
The other purpose of marriage is to safeguard the legitimacy of children who if begotten through marriage are entitled to inheritance.
Marriage improves the couples’ social status through earning respect and dignity in the society.
Conditions and regulations of marriage
We have seen that the family begins with marriage. A marriage is valid only if the following conditions are observed:
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The formula (Al-Ssigha’)
This is the formula of marriage which includes the offer (Ijab) and the acceptance (Qabul).
The offer may be presented directly or through an agent which then gives room for the acceptance.In this case,the process begins with the man’s proposal which presents his full identification and intention. On the other hand the woman has to state clearly her wishes and has the liberty to accept or decline the offer.This first stage enhances familiarization to instill confidence.
The contracting parties (al-Aqidaan)
This refers to the bride and the groom who must satisfy conditions of marriage such as:
Be of sound mind
Have attained maturity
Must give their consent Abu Huraira(R.A) narrated that the prophet (S.A.W) said, “A woman
without a husband shall not be married until she gives consent,nor a virgin be married till her
consent is sought. They asked: How shall be her permission? He said, If she remains silent.”
They should not belong to the prohibited degrees of marriage.
The issue of witnesses has been given great importance in Islam and therefore the marriageshould be
contracted before two male Muslim witnesses whomust be mukhalaf (mature and sane). In
addition,they must understand the language in which the marriage ceremony is being conducted. Regarding the witnesses, Ibn Abass reports that the prophet (S.A.W) said, “The fornicatresses are those who marry by themselves without witnesses.” (At-Tirmidhy)
The guardian is in charge of giving consent or permission for the marriage to proceed. Abu Musa
(R.A) narrates that the prophet said, “There is no marriage without a guardian.” (Ahmad,At-
Tirmidhy,Abu Dawoud, Ibn Majah) The Shariah gives the father the first position as the guardian. In the case that the father is absent, then the guardianship will take the following order of merit:
o The grand father
o Full brother
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o Uncle (the father’s brother)
In case the guardian declines to give consent for a reason which is not valid according to theSharia,then the Kadhi actsas the guardian.
Allah (S.W.T) says in the Quran, “And give the women (on marriage) their dowry as a free gift, but if they,of their own good pleasure emit any part of it to you, take it and enjoy it with right good cheer.”[Q: 1:1]
Dowry is the obligatory gift given to the woman in marriage.It can either include a service or other material things like money, property or any other assets.This can be paid either in full or partially on the day of Nikah.Thewoman is given the right to request for whatever dowry she wants. This should be done on measurable termswithout over burdening the groom.In the event where the woman asks for divorce she is obliged to return the dowry.
The following diagram respresents the components of an Islamic marriage.
Summary of the conditions for marriage:
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The Muslim marriage ceremony
The actual Muslim wedding is known as a nikah. It is a simple ceremony, in which the bride does
not have to be present so long as she sends two witnesses to the drawn-up agreement. Normally, the
ceremony consists of reading from the Qur’an, and the exchange of vows in front of witnesses for
both partners. No special religious official is necessary, but often the Imam is present and performs
the ceremony. He may give a short sermon. Let’s now briefly look at what should be included in
The assembly of nikah is addressed with a marriage sermon (khutba-tun-nikah) by the Muslim who is officiating the marriage. This should be done by a state appointed Muslim judge (Qad’i) who also keeps the record of the marriage contract. However any trust worthy practicing Muslim can conduct the nikah ceremony. The documents of marriage contract/certificate are filed with the mosque
(masjid) and local government for record.
The Prophet (S.A.W) made it his tradition to have marriage sermon delivered in the assembly to solemnize the marriage. The sermon invites the bride and the groom, as well as the participating guests in the assembly to a life of piety, mutual love, kindness, and social responsibility.
The Khutbah-tun-Nikah begins with the praise of Allah. His help and guidance is sought. The
Muslim confession of faith that ‘There is none worthy of worship except Allah and Muhammad is His servant and messenger” is declared. The three Quranic verses (Quran 4:1, 3:102, 33:70-71) and one Prophetic saying (hadith) form the main text of the marriage. This hadith is:
‘By Allah! Among all of you I am the most God-fearing, and among you all, I am the super most to save myself from the wrath of Allah, yet my state is that I observe prayer and sleep too. I observe fast and suspend observing them; I marry woman also. And he who turns away from my Sunnah has no relation with me”. (Bukhari)
The Muslim officiating the marriage ceremony concludes the ceremony with a supplication (Dua)
for bride, groom, their respective families, the local Muslim community, and the Muslim community at large (Ummah)
it is important for us to note here that marriage is considered as an act of worship (ibadah). It is therefore virtuous to conduct it in a Mosque keeping the ceremony simple. Islam advocates simplicity in ceremonies and celebrations.
There are certain things which are basic to all Muslim marriages. Marriages have to be declared
publicly. They should never be undertaken in secret. The publicity is usually achieved by having a
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large feast, or walimah – a party specifically for the purpose of announcing publicly that the couple are married and entitled to each other. Aisha (R.A) narrated that the prophet said, “hroclaim this marriage and solemnize it in mosques and beat aafs over it.”(At-Tirmidhy-Rare Hadith)This is
usually held after the consummation of the marriage. The relatives, neighbours, and friends are
invited in order to make them aware of the marriage. Both rich and poor of the family and
community are invited to the marriage feasts. It is recommended that Muslims attend marriage
ceremonies and marriage feasts upon invitation.
Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) said:
“…and he who refuses to accept an invitation to a marriage feast, verily disobeys Allah and His Prophet”. (Ahmad & Abu Dawood)
The word “holygamy” may not be a familiar one although it is the commonest type of marriage in most cultures and traditions. Polygamycomes from two Greek words, namely “poly” meaning many or more than, and “Gamy” which stands for marriage or a sexual union.Thus polygamy means marrying more than one wife.
Islam permits polygamy and it should be clearly understood that it is a Sunnah practiced by the prophet and his predecessors. This means that marriage to more than one wife is a continuation of the practice established by the previous religions.For example; prophet Yaqub had four wives, Prophet Ibrahim had two wives and Prophet Suleiman had several wives.
Islam polished and reformed the old practice that was there before the advent of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) that had a lot of violation brought in by pagans who had come after the previous prophets.This was done by setting up certain rules and regulations to control this important feature in the social life of Muslims.
Conditions for polygamy
It should be noted with great care that it is not compulsory that one marries more than one wife but it is permissible under very strict conditions.These conditions have been laid because of the challenges that arise in the polygamous family. What are some of the disadvantages that you may have seen in your society as a result of having more than one wife? Due to the reasons that you have mentioned, the shariah has restricted polygamy to the following conditions:-
- The number of wives must not exceed four at any one given time.
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- The husband should be equally fair to all his wives in relation to life’s daily needs such as
providing them with clothing, feeding and housing without favor or discrimination to any one of them. Also on the basis of emotional side such as spending the same number of nights with each one equally.
It should be noted that for a man to favor emotionally all of his wives is sometimes beyond the
human ability; however, one should not abuse this fact by unjustly mistreating any of the wives.
Abu Huraira (R.A) narrated that the prophet (P.B.U.H) said: “Whoever has two wives and inclines to
one of them, will come on the day of judgment with one of his sides paralyzed.”If one of you had two
wives and did not treat them equally according to others justly, he would come at the Day of
Judgment walking lamely.”(Related by Ahmad and the four Imams with a sound chain of narrators)
If this condition is not fulfilled, then polygamy is absolutely forbidden because in such a case it would bring injustice and means for misbehaving.
iii. One should be in a position to fulfill the wives conjugal rights before he commits himself
to another one, because one of the main objectives of marriage is fulfillment of sexual
- One should be financially able to sustain and support the wives and the children because
it is the man’s responsibility to provide for the family.
Failure to observe the above conditions, a Muslim man is not encouraged to marry a second wife
because Allah (SWT) says:
“…And if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly withthe orphaned girls marry other women of your choice, two, three or four, but if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one or (the slaves) that your right hand possess. That is never to prevent you from justice….”[Q: 4:3]
Reasons for polygamy
We have already discussed the conditions of polygamy. We shall now focus our attention on the following reasons for the institution of polygamy.
- If the wife is unable to bear children after years of marriage and it has been medically proven
that the wife is barren and there is nothing wrong with the husband then the husband is
permitted to marry another wife. It is howeverrecommended that the firs wife be provided for
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by the husband and given all the rights she deserves.the first wife continues to enjoy her rights such as support and maintenance.
- The population of women is higher than that of men therefore polygamy provides an
opportunity to the otherwise would be unmarried women to get married. This safe guards the society against social evils like adultery and prostitution.
iii. If the wife suffers from contagious or other terminal illness which prevents her from
honoring her conjugal obligation, plurality of wives serves the purpose for the man.
- For the sake of preservation and maintenance of the Muslim society.When men die either
naturally or in a battle and widows are left behind, it becomes necessary that they should be taken care of.The sharia therefore provides room for polygamy so that they can be married and offered support and protection.
- To increase the Muslim population through pro-creation.
Anas bin Malik (R.A) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (P.B.U.H) used to command us to
get married and would very strictly prohibit us from remaining in celibacy and say, ‘Marry the woman who is child bearing and loving for I shall over all the nations by your number on the day of resurrection.” (Ahmad bin Hanbal. Ibn Hiban graded it as Sahih)
Marriage of Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h)
Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) underwent a marriage life and it is from him that we emulate the best practices of marital life.
By the time of his death, he had nine wives, however, this should not be perceived as a violation of Allah’s (S.W.T) instructions as he was the only one who had been permitted to do so by Allah (S.W.T) due to the following reasons:-
- To continue with the practice that Allah had prescribed to his predecessors’ like prophets
Ibrahim, Yaqub and Suleiman (A.S)
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- To eradicate the Quraish traditionsand prejudices. That’s why the hrophet married from
different ethnic groups, clans and among the Quraish tribe.Before this, the Quraish used to see themselves as superior beings to other tribes.
iii. To establish and implement the Islamic law. Allah (S.W.T) ordered the prophet (P.B.U.H) to
marry Zainab bint Jaash who had been married by his adopted son Zayyid bin al-Harith so that He could put to an end the Arab practice of referring to adopted sons their own.
- For protection and security of the widows whose husbands had died in jihad wars. For
example his marriage to Saudah bint Zamah (widowed by Sakran bin Amro) and Zainab bint Khuzaimah(widow to Abdullah bin Jaash).
- To foster good relations between Muslims and non Muslims. For example his marriage to
Jurawrriya bint al Harith who was the daughter of a tribal chief of Banu Mustaliq clan of Arabia, Swafiyyah bint Huyay and Ummu Habibah.
- To disseminate Islamic knowledge and in particular enforce domestic laws. He married
Aisha Bint Abu Bakar (R.A.) and Ummu Salamah (R.A.) who memorized a number of hadith and used to train the other women on religious and family matters.
The prophet (P.B.U.H) married twelve wives whom the Muslims refer to us mothers of the believers
(Ummahaatul Mu’uminiin).The prophets wives have been given this honor because of the love, dedication and support they showed to the prophet (P.B.U.H)
The prophet’s Wives
1). Khadija bint Khuwaylid – She was twice widowed and was a wealthy merchant who
commanded respect, honor and dignity among the Quraish. She was the prophet’s wife for
nearly twenty years and bore him four girls; Zainab, Ruqayyah, Ummu Kulthum and
Fatimah, as well as two sons; Qassim and Abdulla (both of whom passed away in infancy).
2). SaudahbintZum’aa – She was a widow whose husband passed on while returning from exile
in Abyssinia (Ethiopia).
3). Aisha, the daughter of Abu- Bakar as- Swiddiq (R.A) – She was a scholar of hrophet’s Sunna
(Hadith) and other sciences.
4). Hafswahbint Umar bin al- Khattab (R.A) – She was a widow. Her husband was martyred in
the battle of Badr. She married prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) in the second year of Hijra.
5). ZainabBint Khuzaimah- She was known as the ‘mother of the poor’ because of her kindness
and special empathy to the underprivileged.
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6). UmmuSalamah (Hind bint Abi Umayyah bin Mugheerah) – Her father was one of the famous
Quraish leaders. Her husband was martyred in the battle of Uhud.
7). Juwairiyyah bint al-Harith: – She was among the hostages during the battle between the
believers and Banu Mustaliq. Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) married her so as to save her
from humiliation.Her name was Barrah before her marriage to the holy prophet (P.B.U.H)
8). ZainabbintJa’sh – She was the daughter of the prophet’s paternal aunt and the divorced wife
of his adopted son,Zaid bin Al- Harith.
9). Ummu Habibah – She was the daughter of Abu Sufyan. Her husband denounced Islam after
migration to Abyssinia. When he later died the prophet (P.B.U.H) married her to alleviate her from the problems she was facing.
10). SwafiyyahbintHuyay – She was a daughter of a Jewish chief of Banu Nadhir. Her father was
one of the greatest opponents of Islam. Later their tribe was banished from Madina after the fall of Khaybar in the seventh year of Hijra. She was among the captives who converted to Islam and prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) married her.
11). Maimunah bint al- Harith – She was the daughter of Harith of the Khawazin tribe. She was a
widow in Makkah and married the prophet (P.B.U.H) in the seventh year of Hijra. .
12). Mariyya al- Qibtwiyyah – She was the last wife of the prophet (P.B.U.H). She was presented
to the prophet as a gift by the King of Egypt after the prophet had sent an invitation to Egypt and other countries to join Islam. She was the only one after Khadija to bear the prophet (P.B.U.H) a child called Ibrahim who also died in childhood.
Rights and duties of family members
The bond in the family involves mutual expectation of rights and duties that have been prescribed by the religion and enforced by the Islamic sharia. This implies, therefore, that every family member has certain commitments to meet over the other. The role of each member depends on their position in the family. Let us now look at the rights and duties of each family member.
Rights of the parents:
These are the duties which should be performed by the children towards their parents. Allah says in the Quran, “eour Lord Has decreed that:
- They should be treated with kindness.
- Children should take care of them when they get old or need their help.
- They should remember them in the prayers.
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- Do not turn away from them in case they need you.
- Obey them in whatever they ask you and are in accordance with the sharia.
- Pay their debts when they pass on.
- Show them a good send off when they die.
- Children should continue praying for their parents even after they have died.
Duties of the husband: Rights of the wife.
Islam honours the husband as the head of the family. Infact Allah (S.W.T) emphasizes in the holy
Quran thus; “Men are the protectors and maintainers of women because Allah has given the one
more strength than the other and because they support them from their means…”[Q: 4:34]There
are certain duties which as a husband you have to observe towards your wife. They include the
- He should protect his wife from any social, physical or psychological harm.
- He should consult with his wife in kindness in matters relating to the family.
- He has the full responsibility of financially and materially supporting and maintaining his
- He must be faithful to his wife and not keep any marital secrets from her.
- He should respect the feelings of his wife and treat her with love, sympathy and
- He should fulfill the wife’s matrimonial needs.
- He should establish a rich Islamic atmosphere in the home.
- He should keep the marriage life a secret.
Duties of a wife: The rights of the husband
Allah (S.W.T) says in the Qur’an: “And those who pray, ‘Our Lord! Grant unto us wives and off
springs who will be the comfort of our eyes, and give us (the grace) to lead the righteous.” [Q:
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Anas bin Malik (R.A)narrated that the prophet said, “If a woman says her prayers, fasts her month
(Ramadhan), guards her private parts and obeys her husband, she may enter paradise by any
door(gate)’. (Related by Abu Nu’aim).The wife is therefore expected perform the following duties;
- She should not observe any Sunnah fast when the husband is present except with his
- She should not allow anybody in the house without his permission.
- She is answerable to her husband in ensuring that duties of worship are observed by all
family members in the house.
- She should fulfill the conjugal rights of the husband.
- She should not leave the house for visiting friends and relatives without her husband’s
- She should keep herself neat and clean to guard her husband from external temptations.
- She should not take advantage of her sexual obligation to manipulate her husband.
- She should not receive gifts or favors from other men without the consent of the husband.
- She should take care of the husband’s property.
Rights of the children: Duties of the parents
Just as thechildren should observe certain obligations towards their parents, so should the parents to their children. Some of these duties include the following:
- They should be provided with both religious and secular education.
- They should be given good names.
- The parents should provide them with the basic needs like food, shelter and
- They should be given security and protection from external danger and influence
which may lead to misguidance or injury.
- They have a right to be loved and shown affection.
- They have a right to inherit from their parents after they have passed on.
- They have a right to legitimacy and know his rightful father and
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Rights of extended family members
- They should be assisted when they are in need.
- Muslims should be kind and treat them with gentleness.
- We should protect them from external attacks.
- We should show them love and affection and talk to them nicely.
- We should freely interact with them so that they can get a sense of belonging.
Suggested study questions and activities.
Answer the following questions in your I.R.E revision exercise books.
- a) What is Nikah (Marriage) in Islam?
b)Explain the purpose of Marriage in Islam.
c)Give reasons why the family is the basic unit of the society.
- a) Highlight the conditions and regulations of marriage.
- b) Discuss the roles of each family member in the society.
Visit your local Kadhi’s office and find out how an Islamic marriage is conducted.
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Map of Arabia before the advent of Islam
Map of Arabia showing the major trade routes during the pre Islamic Arabia
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CURRENT MAP OF ARABIA
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HISTORY OF ISLAM
PRE- ISLAMIC ARABIA
Pre Islamic Arabia refers to the period before the prophet started preaching Islam.This period was
characterized by acts of Jahiliya which means the age in which ignorance, barbarism, darkness
from aod’s guidance were witnessed in the Arabian peninsula before the introduction of Islam.
The lives of the Arabs can be discussed in the following areas: Religious, social/moral, economic
The following religious groups and worship practices prevailed in Arabia during the pre-Islamic era;
- Idolatry (Idol worship)Most of the Arabs were idolatrous.They used to curve idols
from wood and stone which they used to worship. Each clan had its own idols to
worship. They offered sacrifices to them and sought their blessings and guidance.
There were 360 idols in Makkah alone. The leading idols were Al -Lata, Uzza,
Manata and Hubbal.
- Christians. These were the followers of Prophet Issa (A.S) and had settled at Najran
and followed the teachings of the Injil.
- Magians. These were the people who worshipped fire. These fire worshippers
originated from Persia.
- Hanifs or Hunafaa. These were the followers of prophet Ibrahim (A.S). These people
worshiped and believed in one God as they embraced the teachings of prophet
Ibrahim and Ismail. Most of them accepted Islam when the prophet started peaching.
- Jews who practiced Judaism. These were the followers of prophet Musa (A.S) and
were the descendants of Israel (Banu Israil). They followed the teachings of the book
of Taurat which was revealed to prophet Musa (A.S)They mostly dwelt in Yathrib
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2.Social and moral conditions.
During pre-Islamic Arabia, the following social conditions were evident:
- The Arabs engaged in leisure activities such as drinking, intoxication and
gambling.These activities were done mostly during social gatherings.
- Women were denied their rights such as inheritance from their parents and
husbands but instead were inherited as property and when a man died his son
would inherit all his wives except his own mother.
- Women were denied the right to life since baby girls were buried alive because
they were considered as weak and could not beable to defend their community
from external aggression.
- The women were also forced into sexual pervasions like prostitution and
subjected to rape. They were also forced to marry more than one husband
- Women were taken as articles of trade as they could be sold and be exchanged
with goods or merchandise in the market.
- The art of poetry was highly cherished by the Arabs. They organized poetry
competitions in open places where poems with vulgar language were recited.
- The Arabs practiced polygamy without any limits and they would marry and
divorce women at will.
- Economic conditions
- a) They practiced Agriculture near the oasis where they used irrigation. This was done in
areas ofYathrib, Taif and Southern parts of Arabia.
- b) Makkah had many historical sites which included the Kaaba. People from
several parts of the world toured those sites making the Arabs earn profit.
- c) Nomadism: During this period the Arabs lived a nomadic life and wandered in the desert
with their animals in search of water and pasture. Most of them kept sheep, camels and goats as there source of livelihood.
- d) Barter trade. Those who settled in the town(town dwellers) practiced barter trade. They
used to exchange goods and commodities.
- Political Conditions
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Arabia did not have a centralized government.There was a chieftainship political system where each
tribe was led by a tribal chief. The tribal chief was appointed on the basis of merit while age was
consideredas one of the important factors. This was because the Arabs associated old age with
wisdom and experience.The Bedouins who were in the desert led and independent life under tribal
leaders.Tribal clashes were very common among the Arabs of that time. Most of the conflicts were
as a result of revenge missions. In some of the parts, there were Kings who ruled their subjects.
Life history of Prophet Mohammad
FAMILY TREE OF THE PROPHET
ABDUL MUTWALIB (SHAYBA)
HAMZA ABU TWALIB ABDULLAH ABBAS (AMIR) ABU LAHAB
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+ FATMA (+KHADIJA)
HASSAN HUSSEIN FATIMA UMM KULTHUM RUQAYYA ZAINAB ABDULLAH QASIM
It is important to note that apart from Khadija, the prophet married other wives as we have seen in the previous chapter. Among them Marria al Qibtiyya bore him a son by the name Ibrahim who died at infancy.
The Year of the Elephant
The coming of the settler to Kenya and other parts of East Africa brought several changes to the
country. Some of which were adopted while others were unfriendly to the natives who reacted to
them leading to the struggle for independence. The country wanted to govern itself and control its
resources without any intterferance from the forign contries like Britain.It so happened that in the
year the prophet was born, Makka had been known as a center for pilgrimage in the entire Arabian
peninsular. The city was therefore growing rapidly which caused the neighbouring territories to start
The Ethiopian governor of Yemen, Abraha al-Ashram was among those who envied the fameof the Ka’aba among the Arabs. He thereforeconstructed a big cathedral in Sanaa (the capital of eemen) and ordered the Arabs to go there for pilgrimage instead. The order was ignored and this angered Abrahawho in fury decided to demolish the Ka’aba. He set off with a large army of 60,000 soldiers and 13 elephants towards Makka.
He was riding on a huge elephant. It was an animal which the Arabs had not seen before, thus the year came to be known as ‘Amul-Fil (the year of the elephant), and it started an era for reckoning the years in Arabia.
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When news of the advance of Abraha’s army reached Makka, the people of Makka were frightened by the large well, equipped army and of course the elephants which they had never seen before.
Abraha sent a message toBanu Hashim who were the custodians of the Kaaba at that time led by Abdul Mutwalib and advised them to demolish the Kaaba or he would destroy the whole city. ‘Abdul-Muttalib replied to this ultimatum in these words: “By Allah, we do not want to fight him. So far as this House (the Ka’bah) is concerned, it is the House of Allah; if Allah wants to save His House, He will save it, and if He leaves it unprotected, no one can save it.”
On the second day, Abraha ordered his army to enter the Holy city of Makka and destroy the Kaaba.
‘Abdul-Muttalib told the Makkans to leave the city and to seek refuge in the surrounding hills.But
he, together with some leading members of Quraish, remained within the precincts of the Ka’bah.
Abraha advanced with his army. Seeing the walls of the Ka’bah, he ordered its demolition. No
sooner had the army reached near the Ka’bah than a dark cloud of small birds (known in Arabic as
Ababil) overshadowed the entire army of Abraha. Each bird had three pebbles: two in its claws and
one in its beak. A rain of the pebbles poured down from the birds, and in a few minutes, the whole
army was destroyed. Abraha himself was seriously wounded; he fled towards Yemen but died on the
Allah (S.W.T)explains this event in the following chapter of the Quran:
Have you not seen how your Lord dealt with the companions of the Elephant? Did He not make their treacherous plan go astray? And He sent against them birds in flocks, striking them with stones of baked clay, so He rendered them like straw eaten up. [Qu’ran, 105]
Birth and early life of the prophet
Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was born on 12th of Rabiul-Awwal/22nd April 570 CE in Makkah in
the year of elephant.He belonged to the Banu Hashim clan of the Quraish tribe. Abdul Mutalib,
hisgrandfather was the chief of Makkah at that time.He had five sons:Hamza,Abu
Talib,Abdullah,Abbas and Abu Lahab.The prophet’s father was Abdullah Ibn Abdul Mutalib.He
died a few days before the prophet’s birth in eathrib while he was coming from a business journey
in Syria. His mother was called Amina binti Wahab of the Banu Zuhras clan of Madina.She died on
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the return journey from Madina where they had gone to visit the grave of the prophet’s father at a
place called ‘Abwa’ when he was six years old. After a few months, according to the age-long
custom of the Arabs, the child was entrusted to a Bedouin woman Halima Bint Dhuib by name, of
the tribe of Bani-Sa’d, for his upbringing. It was the practice of the Arabs to send their children to the
country-side so that they would grow up strong, healthy and learn the refined language of the
Bedouin. He lived with the Banu Sa’d clan for four years before his mother took him back under her
After the death of his mother, he was raised by his paternal grandfather ‘Abdul Muttalib who was 80
years of age. ‘Abdul-Muttalib died two years later at the age of 82, leaving the care and custody of
the orphaned Muhammad (P.B.U.H) to Abu Talib his uncle who showed him affection even more
than his own children. He always kept the child in his company and travelled with him through the
caravan routes to Syria and Egypt in the north and northwest and Yemen in the south. It was during
one of this trade journeys that a Christian monk by the name Bahira noticed an applelike seal of
prophet hood below the shoulder of Muhammad (P.B.U.H). He advised his uncle to take great care
of the young Muhammad who was only twelve years and take him back to Makkah.
As a young boy he looked after his uncle’s herds and he was also fond of sitting in the circles of the elders to gain wisdom unlike other youths who indulged in social evils. Muhammad was popularly known as ‘al-Ameen’ for his unimpeachable character by the Makkans and visitors alike. The title Al-Ameen means the Honest, the Reliable and the Trustworthy, and it signified the highest standard of moral and public life.
Marriage to lady khadija
Upon hearing of Muhammad’s good character, Khadija Bint Khuwaylid, a rich merchant widow,
asked Muhammad (P.B.U.H) to take some merchandise for trade to Syria. It is written that in the
trade caravans, her merchandise usually equaled that of the whole tribe put together.
She was the daughter of Khuwaylid ibn Asad ibn ‘Abdul-‘Uzza ibn Qusayi. Soon after this trip
Khadija realized that Muhammad had brought more profits than she had been getting
previously.Muhammad was twenty-five when Khadija proposed marriage to him through her friend
Nafisa who immediately went to inform him. He accepted the proposal and requested his uncle to
discuss the matter with Khadija’s uncle Umar ibn Asad. At that time, Khadija was twice widowed
and forty years old. Theygot six children; four daughters and two sons. His first son Qassim died at
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the age of two. His second son Abdullah died in infancy. The four daughters were: Zainab, Ruqayyah, Umm Kulthum, and Fatimah (R.A)
Baath and first revelation
The hrophet’s life attracted everybody’s respect andhonor. He won the confidence of Khadija, his wife, as well as other people in Makka from his positive character. For the next fifteen years, he dedicated his life to meditation and worship contrary to the norms of social evils practiced at that time. Unknowingly, he was protected by Allah (S.W.T) from the evils that prevailed and occupied the culture of the people.
He used to go to the cave Hira at Jabal Nur (Mt. Nur) in the outskirts of Makka. In this place, he would pray to Allah (S.W.T) for deliverance from the dirty practices that were common and the darkness of worshipping idols. Every aspect of creation gave him the hope of a way of life that would exclude him from the immoral practices. He would stay there for a number of days before going home. This practice continued and became part of his programme.
One night during the month of Ramadhan, at the age of forty, while in the cave, Jibril (S.A) came in human form and told him, “I am Jibril, and you are Allah’s messenger …” Then he told the hrophet, “Read!”The prophet answered him, “I cannot read,” Jibril squeezed him hard and repeated the same words while the prophet gave the same answer. On the third time the prophet asked, “What shall I read?” Jibril told him:
“Read in the name of your lord who created
Who created man from a clot.
Read:Andthe Lord is the most Bounteous,
Who teaches by the pen,
Teaches man that which he knew not… [Q: 96:1-5]
Muhammad repeated the words until they permanently stuck in his memory before the disappearance of Jibril (A.S). These verses marked the first revelation of the Quran that would continue for the next twenty three years of his life.
After the sudden disappearance of Jibril (A.S), he could still re-visualize him and could recall the
words. A mixture of fear and shock had engulfed him. He could not stay in the cave, so he went back
home while still having this vision his mind. At home he related what had happened to Khadija. She
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had a strong belief that her husband could neither be injured nor harmed by evils and spirits because
of the record of virtues that he practiced. He was quite depressed by the occasion. More often he
would see Jibril in his vision wherever he was and he would tell Khadija, “dathiruni i.e. cover me
There was a duration in which the revelation paused after the first verses of Surat ul Alaq this period is known as Fatra, but still the prophet would see the vision of Jibril (A.S) and say, “dathiruni i.e. cover me up.” After a while Jibril appeared again, and this time with the first seven verses of Surat ul Mudathir:
“O you wrapped up (in a mantle).
Stand and warn (the people) Arise and deliver thy warning! And thy Lord do you magnify!
And thy garments keep free from stain!
And all abomination shun!
But for thy Lord’s (cause) be patient and constant…” [Q: 74:1-7]
This was an indicator of a turning point to the life of Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) from an
ordinarily viewed Muhammad of theBanu Hashim clan, to a globally esteemed and divinely
distinguished role model in the service of Allah (S.W.T). Unlike the other men of Makka, he had
been anointed as the last messenger of Allah (S.W.T.), an opportunity that never before or after
would be shared with, or seized by any other creature. He had received the honor of undertaking the
divine responsibility of leading others in the worship of Allah (S.W.T). He had a mission of
delivering the rest of mankind from idolatry and directing them towards the worship of Allah
(S.W.T). The shape of the moral pattern of life lay in his effort as per the will of Allah (S.W.T). It
was inclusions of his name into the chain of prophets of Allah (S.W.T), and above that a seal of that
chain of Prophet Hood. Above all, he had been bestowed with the great honor of receiving the
Quran, which is the seal of the divine books of Allah (S.W.T), for the guidance of mankind and a
testimony to all creatures.
Early Muslim community
After receiving Wahyi, the prophet’s mission was to preach Islam to the entire Ummah. It was his
obligation to preach the oneness of Allah to the Quraish who were worshipping Idols and offering
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sacrifices to them. Most of the people were unbelievers and practiced polytheism. The prophet started preaching in secret and mostly to his family members and close friends.
He managed to get a few followers who accepted to convert to Islam. Among the very first people to convert came from his family household.These included Khadija Binti Khuwaylid (hrophet’s first wife), his cousin Ali bin Abi Talib (RA),and Abubakar Assidiq(R.A), the prophets dearest friend and Zaid bin Harith (R.A), his adopted son.
Several other people in Makka embraced Islam and strengthened the religion making it gain popularity. The first early converts included among others; Uthman Bin Affan, Saad Bin Abi Waqas, Zubeir Bin Awwam, Talha Bin Ubaidullah, Abdurrahman Bin Auf and Az-Zuhri. After three years of preaching the religion in secrecy nearly forty people had converted to Islam and accepted to follow the Islamic teachings. Allah (S.W.T) commanded the prophet (P.B.U.H) to preach to the people openly and warn them against polytheism.
Almighty Allah (S.W.T) says, “Therefore expound openly what you are commanded, and turn away from those who join false gods with Allah.” [Q: 15:94]
After the prophet was commanded to preach openly, he gathered the Makkanpeople at MountSafa
and addressed them on the Oneness of Allah(S.W.T). The hrophet thus said, “eou see if I were to
tell you that there were some horse men in the valley planning to raid you, will you believe me?”
They said: “ees, we have only witnessed the truth from you.” He said, “I am a Warner to you before
a severe torment.”Although the people had known the prophet as avery honest person, they refused
to accept him as a prophet. His own uncle called Abu Lahab cursed the prophet by telling him, “May
you Perish this day. Have you called us here for such a thing (believing in one God) that you made
us to gather here?” Allah was angered by Abu Lahab’s remarks on the hrophet (h.B.U.H) and a
Surah was revealed called Suratul- Lahab. In this surah, Allah the Almighty condemned Abu Lahab
together with his wife.
Allah says in the Quran,
“Perish the hands of the father of flame! Perish he!
No profit to him from his wealth, and all his gains!
Burnt soon will he be in a fire of blazing flame!
His wife shall carry the (cracking) wood as fuel!
A twisted rope of palm leaf fibre round her (own) neck!”[Q: 111]
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What do you understand by the word persecution? In your live experience,have you undergone any
hardships? Mention a few of these situations to your friend. Persecution refers to the subjection of
pain to an individual or group of people in order to discourage them from carrying out their
The Quraish were not pleased to see that several people were embracing Islam. They held meetings to plan how they would stop the prophet and his companions from preaching and practicing Islam. Under the leadership of Abu Lahab, the prophet’s own uncle, plans were put in place to stop the spread of Islam. The new and weak converts were to be subjected to intimidation, threats and physical torture. Several other methods were used to punish and discourage the Prophet of Allah and his companions for accepting Islam as the true and only religion.
Methods of persecution
Each of the leaders among the Quraish began persecuting any one in their clan who was following Islam.They used various methods among them were the following:
Ø The prophet and the early Muslims were pelted with stones as they walked in the
streets of Makka.
Ø Abu Lahab forced his two sons who had married Ruqayyah and UmmuKulthum
(daughters of the prophet) to divorce them.
Ø UmmuJamil Bint Harb, who was Abu Suffiyyan’s sister and the wife of Abu
Lahab,used to tie bundles of thorns with ropes and place them on the prophet’s path.
Ø The Makkan’s used to rebuke the Muslims and abuse them whenever they saw them.
Ø UmmulJamil recited the follwing words of disrespect;” We have disobeyed the
dispraised one, rejected his call and alienated ourselves from his religion.”
Ø Uqbah bin AbiMu’ait put the intenstines of the camel on the shoulders of the prophet
while he was in Swalat.
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Ø Walid ibn Mughira would speak ill about the prophet’scharacter Allah (S.W.T) says,
“Heed not the type of despicable man,ready with oaths, a slanderer going about
with calumnies, (habitually) hindering (all) good,transgressing beyond
bounds,deep in sin.” [Q:68:10 – 12]
Ø The Quraish barred the prophet and the Muslims from offering prayers in the public
and in the Kaaba.
Ø Some companions of the prophet like Bilal bin Rabah and Ammar bin Yassir were
tied on donkeys and dragged through the town in the scorching sand.
Ø In other cases, iron armors were put on the companions who would then be left in the
hot sun to fry.This happened to Bilal bin Rabah.
Ø Female slaves like An-Nahdiyah and Zanirah were mistreated by their masters and
denied food for embracing Islam until Abubakar paid for their freedom.
Ø Khabbab bin Al-Arath, who was a slave would be dragged by her hair, and her neck
was twisted then she was thrown into the fire until her back was burnt.
Ø Muslims were also killed cruelly. Summaiya was bayoneted with a red hot iron by
Abu Jahal until she died.
Ø Ammar and his parents were forced to repeatedly lie on burning sand as they were
Ø Bilal bin Rabah was severely beaten by his master Umayyah bin Khalaf. He would be
dragged through the streets on bear chest.A heavy stone was placed on his chest to
force him to denounce Islam.
Ø Uthman bin Affan used to be wrapped in a mat of palm leaves then fire would be set
Ø Mus’ab bin Umair was denied food and water by her mother and when she saw that
he was not ready to denounce Islam, she expelled him from her house.
Migration to Abyssinia (615 C.E)
Abyssinia is the current Ethiopia. Islam was getting many converts day by day despite the torture they got from the Quraish. When the persecutions became unbearable to the newly converted Muslims, the prophet (P.B.U.H) advised them to migrate to Abyssinia. It was a Christian King called Negus(Najash Ash-ham) who was known for his tolerance and knowledge about religious issues and was very hospitable.
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Abyssinia was a peaceful country and far away from Makkah. This would help the Muslims to settle down and continue with their new faith. Fourteen men and one woman sneaked through the rough desert and fled to Abyssinia. Each day the number of the asylums gradually increased. The prophet (P.B.U.H) was left behind to continue with the propagation of Islam. The Makkans were infuriated by the news of the Muslim’s migration to Abyssinia. They sent delegations to the court of King Negus to ask him to hand the Muslims back to them. This was in the year 615 C.E. King Negus was a good listener, wise and just. He listened to both parties and disapproved the Quraish allegations against the Muslims and gave the Muslims freedom of staying in Abyssinia for as long as they would not interfere with the peace.
Results of the Muslims migration to Abyssinia
We have seen that after several persecutions, the prophet advised the Muslims to migrate. This migration was a sigh of relief for them and the following were the results:
- Muslims lived peacefully in Abyssinia.
- There was intermarriage between the Abyssinians and the Muslims.
- Many Abyssinians converted to Islam at that time.
- Trade flourished in Abyssinia.
- Muslims were able to practice their faith freely and peacefully.
- The disappointed Quraish decided to look to intensify their persecutions against the prophet
and the Muslims who had been left in Makkah.
Boycott of the Banu Hashim (617-620 C.E)
The pagans were not happy to see theBanu Hashim protecting the Prophet. In their struggle to get rid
of the prophet they met at a place called Wa’di-l Muhassab, an oath was taken and an
agreementwritten by Bagheed bin Amir bin Hashim was signed. It contained the following rules:
Ø The other Arab tribes should not conduct any business dealings with the Banu Hashim. Ø No inter-marriage was to take place between them and any other tribe.
Ø There should be neither social relations norinteractions like visiting them.
Ø There should be no communication whatsoever.
Ø The Banu Hashim should not enter the Kaaba.
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Ø Food and water supply was not allowed to reach them.
This boycott took place between 617-620 C.E and the Banu Hashim and the sympathizers of the prophet were confined in a mountainous valley known as Shi’b Abu Talib which was hostile for human habitation. This lasted for a period of three years. The agreement and was attached at the Ka’aba. The prophet cursed him and his hand got paralyzed
As time went by, the Makkans developed mixed feelings and some started sympathizing with their expelled kinsmen.A special group was formed to campaign for abolishing the agreement.Abu Jahal was consulted several times but he refused.After a hot argument, it was discovered that the whole piece of paper on which the agreement had been written had been eaten by ants.The boycott was therefore lifted and the Muslims were allowed to come back to Makka.
Circumstances that led to the Boycott of the Banu Hashim
- Failure of the Makkans to convince the newly converted Muslims to go back to their
- Failure by the Makkans to bring back the Muslims from Abyssinia.
- Islam was against the Makkans religion.
- Makkans were alarmed by the increasing number of Muslims.
- The Makkans failure to stop the prophet from preaching Islam.
- Failure of the Makkans to persuade Abu Twalib, whohad persistently promised to protect the
prophet, to stop his nephew from preaching Islam.
- The Makkans were alarmed by the conversion of Umar bin Khattab to Islam.
- Islam was rapidly spreading beyond Makka e.g. Abyssinia.
Effects of Boycott of the Banu Hashim
- It resulted in the death of Khadija and Abu Twalib (the strong pillars of the prophet
- Spread of Islam came to a standstill for sometime in Makka.
- The Muslims suffered economic hardships.
- It inflicted mental torture to the prophet and the Muslims werepsychologically affected.
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- The Muslims became weak due to hunger and starvation.
- Others became seriously sick while others died.
- The attention of the prophet was diverted from preaching to attending to the welfare of the
- It restricted the prophet’s audience to outsiders since they would not move outside the cave.
- It strengthened the prophet’s determination to continue with his mission.
The Year of Sorrow (A’m-ul Huzn)
How do you morn a berievement or a loss? It may be loss of money or any other important item in life. It is normal for any human being to feel a sense of lose once someone close to him or her dies. This was no exception for the prophet when helost two pillars of support; that is, his dear wife, Khadija who gave him financial and moral support, and his uncle Abu Twalib who always protected him from the malice of the Quraish. The prophet as a human being was bereaved, depressed and tensed. Therefore Allah (S.W.T) granted him a miraculous journey to uplift his spirit towards Islam. We shall now look at the miraculous journey also known as Isra wal Mi’raaj.
Israai wal mi’raaj (620 C.E)
This episode is in two parts starting with the Israai. This term literally means a night journey.It is the famous miraculous night journey embarked by the prophet (P.B.U.H) escorted by Angel Jibril (A.S) from Makkah to Jerusalem in Masjidul Maqdas. Allah (S.W.T) says:-
“Glorified be He who carried His servant by night from the inviolable place of worship
(Makkah)to the far distant place of worship (Jerusalem) the neighborhood where of we have
blessed that we might show him of our tokens! Lo! He only He is the hearer, the seer.”[Q: 17:1]
The second part which is Miiraaj literally means a ladder.This is the ascension of the prophet (P.B.U.H) from Jerusalem (BaitulMaqdis) through the space to the seventh heaven during. This remarkable journey took place in the year 620 C.E
Reasons for Israai wal Mi’raaj
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Ø Allah wanted to console the Prophet (P.B.U.H) from the hardships he had been experiencing
from the Quraish in terms of persecutions.
Ø Allah (S.W.T) wanted to give the prophet (P.B.U.H) an opportunity to experience His great
power and Might so as to fill his heart with full confidence, belief, faith and reliance on Him.
Ø To prepare the prophet (P.B.U.H) for the great mission that was ahead of him such as
migration (Hijra) and the everlasting confrontation with polytheism (Kufr).
Ø To give the believers hope and courage to look forward tobetter days ahead from their noble
religion of Islam.
Significance of Israai wal Mi’raaj
Ø It signified that prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was the leader of the two Qiblasi.e.
BaitulMaqdis and Masjidul Haraam in Makkah.
Ø It showed that prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was a true successor of the messengers before
Ø Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was declared as the leader (Imam for the generations to
Ø It pre-ordained that Islamic religion was to stay up to the end of time (Yaum-ul-mahshar). Ø It clearly indicated the finality of prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H)
Ø It distinguished between the true believers and false ones. Some Muslims denounced Islam
after the episode of Israai & Miiraaj when Abu Jahal doubted about the journey, the prophet
(P.B.U.H) confronted them in the morning with facts about his whole journey.
Ø It clearly strengthened the faith of Abu Bakr who was the first to believe in the prophet when
he came back.
Ø It signified the position and the status of Majid Aqswaa to Muslims and as the gateway to
Ø It shows the prominence of Swalat and its position in a Muslims life. It was in the journey of
Miiraaj that the prophet was given the five daily prayers.
Ø The journey highlighted the penalties for certain social evils in the society such as
backbiting, fornication (Zinaa), denying orphans their wealth, those who desist from paying
Zakat; among other evils.
Ø The journey underscored the importance of Masjid Aqswaa as a holy or sacred trust to all
Muslims and it is their religious obligation to guard it from any form of destruction.
Ø It signifies how Allah honors the prophet by bestowing upon him such a miraculous journey.
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The Prophet’s Mission in Madina
Beginning of the Muslim Mission
Madinatu-Rasool (the city of the prophet) is the name of the settlement originally referred to as Yathrib. It was inhabited by the Arab tribes of Aws and Khazraj as well as certain Jewish tribes. The two tribes of Aws and Khazraj used to visit Makka during the pilgrimage season and also to attend to business affairs. The prophet (P.B.U.H) used to preach to every group that came for pilgrimage or for business in his quest to present Islam to them. It was during these visits that he met with six people from the tribe of Khazraj who accepted Islam. The prophet then asked them if they would support him in propagating Islam in Yathrib as his base. Due to the clashes between Aus and Khazraj, this group agreed with the prophet on people who would go and preach the message of Islam and peace to the other tribes in Yathrib. They requested the prophet to postpone this request till the following year. When they reached Yathrib, Allah (S.W.T) had willed the spread of Islam in Yathrib and the tribes of Aus and Khazraj sorted out most of their differences. At the end of the year, they returned to Makka with a group of ten Khazrajites and two Aws. They agreed to meet the prophet at the valley of Aqaba which is in Mina. The Yathribites then promised the prophet and Muslims their support to Yathrib- a journey referred to as Hijra.
Terms of the First Covenant of Aqaba (621C.E)
Have you been involved in any agreement with your friend? What were some of the reasons that led
to the two of you entering into this agreement? Thi scould be termed as a covenant. Itis an agreement
usually formal entered into by two or more persons to do or not to get involved in something. It may
contain some set of rules which we refer to as ‘terms’ that govern the conduct of those involved.
This happened when the prophet met some Yathribitesat the valley of Aqaba. They agreed on the
- They should worship one God.
- They should abstain from evils.
iii. They should obey the laws of Allah (SWT) and His prophet.
After their discussion, the prophet chose Mus’ab bin Umair and Abdullah bin Umm Makhtum to
teach the Yathribites more about Islam. When these people returned to Yathrib, they propagated Islam to such an extent that Islam was the only topic in every home.
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The Second Covenant of Aqaba (622 C.E)
In the year 622 C.E, during the next pilgrimage, a group of 72 Yathribites including two women
came to Makka. They met the prophet and his uncle Abbas at Aqaba, who addressed them thus, “My
nephew has always been regarded as the noblest and held in high esteem by his people. If you wish
to take him to Madina, first, be sure that you are able to uphold the agreement, fulfill your covenant,
and protect him against his enemies. If you are unable to do so, then do not take this responsibility
and leave him with his people instead.” The leader of the eathribites replied: “We are taking full
responsibility. In fact this is the very reason we are pledging this allegiance to him.”
They, therefore, promised to defend him fully and were prepared not to break this agreement under any circumstance. They also swore to worship one God and leave according to the teachings of Islam. The prophet accepted their offer to migrate to Yathrib and he appointed twelve leaders from among them saying, “eou are responsible to your people just as the disciples ofIssa bin Maryam were responsible to him and I am responsible to my people. The twelve agreed to represent the prophet in Yathrib until his arrival.
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Muslim Emigration to Madina
The following map illustrates the route that was used by the Muslims during Hijra.
You must have learnt in History about migration of people from one region to another. For example, the Bantu speaking people are said to have originated from Shungwaya in the Congo basin to come and settle in the parts of East Africa. What are some of the reasons that may lead to such migration? In History of Islam however, the reasons you have given may not apply. The prophet had the responsibility of ensuring that Islam spread far and wide and had to protect the few who had converted to Islam.
This started when the Quraish learnt of the pledge of Aqaba and intensified their torture against the
Muslims. As a result of this the prophet permitted the Muslims to secretly start migrating to Madina.
The noble swahabas (companions) obeyed immediately and they started migrating. Among the first
to migrate were Abu Salama, his wife and son. However, Ummu Salama was prevented by her
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family members from migrating until a year later. Meanwhile, the other Muslims continued leaving
in small groups. They travelled for several days through the rocky and dusty villages until they
reached the first village, known as Quba’ which is 1 km south of eathrib. They were received
warmly by the Yathribites and they stayed here for a period of two weeks. The Yathribites
welcomed them into their homes selflessly and this earned the Yathribites the title Ansaar which
Abubakar (RA) and Ali (RA) were not among this first group that arrived in Yathrib. This is because the prophet had planned that Abubakar should migrate with him. Upon learning this, Abubakar purchased two camels in preparation for the journey.
Migration of the Prophet (P.B.U.H) to Madina
The Quraish sensed more danger when they realized that over one hundred Muslim families had already settled in Madina. They were afraid that the Muslims would join forces with the two tribes in Madina i.e. Aus and Khazraj and become very powerful. Therefore, they called for a meeting at Darun Nadwa to discuss measures that would be taken against the prophet. In the meeting, the following three suggestions were put forward:-
- The prophet should be tied in chains and imprisoned behind strong bars.
- The prophet to be banished from Makkah.
iii. The prophet to be eliminated by way of murdering him.
After a long discussion, they all agreed on Abu Jahal’s advice that the prophet should be killed. In
order that no single person or clan could be blamed, they chose one man from each of the twelve
tribes to participate in the murder. However, Allah had already informed the prophet about the evil
plan of the pagans and through Angel Jibril He instructed him to Madina the same night they had
plotted to kill him. He therefore, asked Abubakar to prepare for their departure.
Meanwhile, the prophet’s house had already been surrounded by a number of youth from the various
tribes of the Quraish. The prophet asked Ali (R.A) to stay behind and lay on the prophet’s bed and in
the morning return all the valuables that had been kept under the custody of the prophet to their
owners. The prophet then emerged from his house and flung a handful of sand in the direction of the
pagans while reciting the opening verses of Surat Yasin. This resulted in them falling asleep and
they did not see the prophet leave for Abubakar’s house. They then emerged from the backdoor of
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Abubakar’s house and headed towards the cave of Thaur.They entered and hid in the cave. The prophet immediately went to sleep because of the long journey they had gone through. He was woken up by the tears of the Abubakar who was feeling pain because he had been stung by a poisonous insect. The prophet then immediately used his saliva to apply on Abubakar’s foot and the pain stopped immediately.
Meanwhile the Quraish leaders were very upset upon learning that the prophet had escaped and left Ali on his bed. They dispatched search parties all around Makka and promised a hundred camel reward for whoever captured the prophet dead or alive. The Makkans were motivated by the reward and they started combing the entire area until some group entered the entrance to the cave. They even employed a Bedouin fortune teller who had the skills of tracing footsteps. He trailed the Prophet and Abubakar until he reached the entrance of the cave of Thaur. Abubakar was afraid that they might be caught but the prophet comforted him by reminding him that Allah was with them. Allah hid them from being seen by the pagans when he inspired a spider to weave a web across the entrance of the cave. (This is referred to as the miracle of the cave).Furthermore a pigeon laid an egg at the entrance by the will of Allah and then a nearby tree bent its branches until they covered the entrance into the cave. Finally, the group carrying out the search with the advice ofUmayyah bin Khalaf left the place without entering the cave after arguing that there were no traces of anyone having gone into the cave.This miracle of the cave teaches us that:
Islam is the true religion chosen by Allah(S.W.T)
Muslimsshould always relay on Allah (S.W.T) for their protection. All creations obey the command of Allah(S.W.T).
They remained hidden in the cave for three days. During this period, Abdullah, the son of Abubakar
used to update them at night with the news of Makkah while Asma bint Abubakar brought them food. By the end of the three days, the Makkan troupes had already given up their search. On the fourth day, the freed slave of Abubakar brought them the two camels that had been bought by Abubakar. He was accompanied by Abdullah bin Ariqeet who was to guide them through a secret route to Madina.
The prophet’s arrival at Quba
The Ansaars were eagerly awaiting the prophet’s arrival. They kept checking every day in the plains
but there was no sign until one day when one Jew who had been ascended a high tower spotted the
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approaching group. He then shouted, “He for whom you have been waiting has arrived.” The prophet was then hosted by Banu Aws. He remained at Quba for a few days in which the Muslims undertook the task of constructing the first mosque called ‘the mosque of piety.’ The prophet worked in participation with other Muslims until the mosque was completed. Ali (RA) joined them while they had camped at Quba.
Arrival in Madina
The prophet and the Muslims set out for Madina on a Friday of Rabiul Awwal 622 C.E. The inhabitants of Madina woke up early awaiting the arrival of the prophet (P.B.U.H). As he entered the city his camel was surrounded by excited Ansaar as they called out Takbeer in joy. Each of the families tried to tag at the camel’s reins so that it would stop at their homes. They were offering their homes, wealth and lives to the prophet (h.B.U.H). The prophet thus said, ‘Leave the camel as it is, for it is guided by Allah (and will stop wherever it is ordered to stop).” Finally the camel sat down in the home ofAbu Ayub Khalid Al Ansaari in an area inhabited by Banu An-Najjar. He stayed in this home until a house was built for him. The people of Yathrib agreed to change its name to Madina tun Nabi which the city of the prophet or Madinatul Munawwara; The city of light. Upon arrival in Madina, the prophet had the following tasks to perform:
- Construction of a Mosque
Have you been involved in the construction of any building? What are some of the materials
that must be available during any such construction? Among the things you have mentined is
the palce where the construction has to take place. When the Muslims came to Madina, they
did not have enough land to carry out all their activities.This therefore prompted Abubakar
to purchase the piece of land on which the prophet’s camel had rested when they first arrived
in Madina. It belonged to two orphans who had decided to give it free of charge but the
prophet insisted that they had to be paid. The construction of the prophet’s mosque began
immediately with both the Ansaar and the Muhajirun taking up various tasks. The prophet
actively took part by carrying bricks as he recited various verses of the Quran and Dua. One
of the duas he said was, “O Allah! No bliss is there but that of the hereafter I beseech you to
forgive the immigrants and the helpers.”The ninety square meter mosque was completed by
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an additional two rooms to accommodate his family and aplace was also reserved to the North to cater for thehomeless.
- Rehabilitation of the Muhajirun from Makkah
It was the main test of the prophet in ensuring that Islamic brotherhood was going to be
established. The Ansaar had been taking care of the Muhajirun who left most of their belongings in Makka. The prophet united both the Ansaar and Muhajirun and the former were to continue sharing their wealth with the latter. They even adopted some of them into their homes and built homes for others. Employment was provided to them from large plantations while financial support was given to others to start up small businesses. This was a very unique and historical bond and it came to be referred t as ‘Muwakhaat’. The prophet had achieved in establishing the Muslim brotherhood within a few months.
iii. Fostering Unity Among the Tribes of Madina
The prophet had an important task of regulating the lives of all the citizen of Madina who
included the Jews, Christians the paganthe two Arab tribes of Aws and Khazraj and the
Ansaar and Muhajirun in order to foster unity and harmony.He therefore it was necessary for
him to established the Madinan charter which constituted a set of rules and regulations
meant to govern all the citizens of Madina and is commonly known as “The Madinan
Relationship between the Ansaar and Muhajirun
- The Ansaar and Muhajirun were united by the bond of Islamic brotherhood.
- The Ansaar showed charity by sharing their wealth with the Muhajirun.
- The Ansaar also adapted their fellow brother into their homes.
- They even built houses for others.
- Some found jobs for them to do on the plantations.
- Others gave the Muhajirun in support in starting their own businesses.
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Any organization will always have its own rule and regulations to govern them. It is because of the
individual differences of the members of the society or country that it becomes necessary to
formulate laws that will harmonise all the operations of the organization. These set of rules or laws
are included in the document we call a constitution.A constitution can be defined as a law
determining the fundamental political principles of a government or an organisation. In Kenya, for
example, we had a refurundum in 2007 to vote for the new constitution which was passed by the
Kenyans. It consists of a set of fundamental principles or established precedents according to which
a state or other organization is governed. These rules together make up or constitute, what the entity
is. When these principles are written down into a single collection or set of legal documents, those documents may be said to comprise a written constitution.
The Madinan constitution therefore was an agreement between the Muslims and the other Arabian tribes in Madina, the Jews, Christians and Polytheists to regulate relations and ensure peace between all of them. It was a written agreement and the first political agreement between Muslims and non Muslims whose principles were based on the Quran and Sunnah. It’s also the first constitution and the greatest political document ever known in History.
We shall now look at the major terms of this document:
As we have mentioned above, any constitution will comprise of rules to govern those who agree to adhere to it. The Madinan constitution also had its terms as follows:
The Ansaar and Muhajirun shall
constitute one group of Umma to
the exclusion of others.
All Muhajirun shall take the 2.
responsibility of their own wards,
shall pay blood among them and
shall also ransom their prisoners in
the event of war.
The people of Banu Aws and 3.
|the six other tribes will be|
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Importance of the Madinan Constitution
- It was an attempt to bring reconciliation of all the tribes and prevent the Madinan
tribes from frequent tribal wars.
- It outlined the principles for establish good relationship between the Muslims and non
- The prophet’sposition as the supreme leader and controller of all affairs of Madina as
a state and arbitrator of any dispute so as to bring peace was declared.
- The constitution summarized the rights of all the Madina citizens such as; freedom of
speechthought and worship.
- Itensured protection of life and property and discouraged all types of crimes like
murder, stealing among others.
- The Muslims and Islam were protected against the plots of the Jews and the
- It proved the Prophet as a great leader. He was able to organize Madina and free it
from tyranny, tribalism, selfishness and dictatorship.
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Challenges in Madina
Even though the prophet was welcomed in Madina, his stay was not peaceful because of the mayhem caused by the Quraish of Makka and a few tribes in Madina. They include the following:
- A clan of Khazraj headed by Abdullah ibn Ubayy who had been expecting to take over as a
king of Yathrib. He therefore pretended to revert to Islam together with his supporters
(Munafiqun). They had not been happy with the prophet’s advancement and started causing
mischief among the believers.
- The Jews staying in Madina also opposed the prophet when the verse came directing
Muslims to change the Qibla from Jerusalem to Makka. (Read Q: 2:146)They secretly
contacted the Makkan Pagans and started to work against the interest of the Muslims. They
also rejected Prophet Mohammad because the messenger they had expected to come was to
be from their tribe.
- The Quraish started sending troops to kill the prophet and his companions.
- Often, they interfered with business activities by looting the towns and destroyed the Arab
trade in the region by paralyzing all business activities.
- They also sent raiding parties with the intention of destroying fruit trees, plantations and
carrying away animals.
- The Makkans conspired with the Munafiqun to rebel against the prophet and Muslims.
- The Quraish went ahead to form alliances with other tribes with the aim of to dislodging
Islam and the Muslims.
- The Quraish leaders spread negative information about the prophet i.e. they said that he was
a seeker chased from his motherland in order to discourage people from embracing Islam.
aespite all these challenges, the prophet remained patient awaiting Allah’s command
Hijra as a Turning Point in the History of Islam
- The prophet received a warm welcome from the people of Yathrib who were eager to
learn Islam as compared to the Makkan Quarish who used to persecute Muslims.
- There was rapid spread of Islam after Hijra as opposed to earlier on.
- After Hijra, Islam came to triumph over the pagan religions and was soon the religion
for the whole of Arabian Peninsula and even expanded further.
- Muslims were able to conduct their affairs peacefully in Yathrib Madina resulting in the
expansion of trade and an organized army.
- The first mosque “Masjidul Quba” was constructed and Muslims could pray freely.
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- Muslims were able to fight in defense of their religion and won in most of the battles
because of the strength they built after travelling to Madina.
- Hijra marks the beginning of the Islamic Calendar at the time of Umar al Khattab
- Muslims got a city of their own and changed the name Yathrib to Madina.
Importance of Hijra in the history of Islam
- There was rapid spread of Islam outside Makka since the Muslims were no longer in fear
of Quraish attack.
- Islam came to triumph over the pagan religion and was soon considered the religion for
the entire Arabian Peninsula.
- Muslims were living in peace and could therefore conduct their affairs without
interference. This resulted in expansion of trade and consequently stabilizing their
- Due to the prevailing peace, the prophet was able to organize the Muslim army in
readiness for the defense of the religion.
- The first mosque (Masjidul Quba) was constructed and thus the Muslims were able to
- The prophet got ample time to teach the new Muslim community Islamic laws and
regulations to guide the affairs of the Muslim state.
- The prophet and the Muslims got a city of their own and changed the name Yathrib to
- The year of Hijra i.e. 622 AD marked the beginning of the Islamic calendar.
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The Battle of BADR(2A.H/624 C.E) 17th Ramadhan
The prophet’s effort to enter into peace treaties with the Jews and other tribes while in Madina was
an attempt to have a community that was founded on security, harmony and freedom. However, this did not go well with the Quraish who were bitter about the migration of the prophet and his companions.
They were not happy to see the Muslims settle in Madina where they were becoming famous in their ways of life while the Islamic faith was becoming more prominent.
Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Salul had been previously promised leadership by the Aus and the Khazraj of Madina. However, with the migration of the prophet in Madina, majority of the in habitants voluntarily became Muslims and preferred the leadership of the prophet over anybody else. This made Abdullah bin Ubayy together with his sympathizers to be Muslims but not absolutely dedicated. They became enemies of Islam from within. They pretended to be Muslims but actually did everything to spoil Islam and secretly oppose it. These people came to bb e referred to as the Munafiqun (hypocrites). They collaborated with the Quraish to give important information and also help them weaken the Muslims.
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The Quraish, promising support to the Munafiqun, encouraged them to get rid of the Muslims in Madina by all means.
Abdullah bin Ubayy, driven by the failed attempt for leadership, complied with the Quraish and organized themselves to fight the Muslims, but without success.
The people from Madina were threatened when they went for Umra because of the presence of
Muslims in their land. Verbal and written provocations were sent to the Muslims in Madina with all
sorts of threats and hatching of plans to expel the Muslims from this important geographical position
i.e.the passage to Syria.
Finally, permission to fight was given to the Muslims by Allah when the ayats were sent down that:
‘To those, against whom war is made, permission is given to (fight), because they were
wronged-and verily, Allah is Most powerful for their aid.”[Q: 22:39]
Reasons that made the Quraish fight in the battle of Badr;
o The Quarish were angry because the Muslims had escaped from them.
o Islam challenged the old religion of the Quarish so the Makkans did not like the
spread of the new faith.
o The Quarish feared that Muslims would block their caravans to the North.
o Confrontation between the Makkans and the Muslims who had been send to defend
o The Makkans were jealousy of the conversion of prominent people like Hamza and
Umar bin Khattab to Islam.
Muslims fought in the battle so as to:-
- Assert their might and instill fear among the Quarish who had always seen them as
- Compensate for the loss the Muslims had gone through while they were in Makka.
- Cut off the access of the Quraish traders to Syria.
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Events of the Battle
Madina was a trade link to Syria used by all the traders.In the year 624 C.E the prophet was informed of a large caravan belonging toQuraish led by Abu Sufyan that was travelling from Sham (Syria) with worthy goods and was to pass through Madina.
The prophet then told the Muslims, “Here is the caravan of the Quraish well loaded with wealth and merchandise. This is an opportunity which we cannot afford to miss” The prophet thus led to attack the caravan in revenge of what the Quraish had done to them. The prophet left Abdullah Ibu UmmiMakhtum and Lubaba Bin Abdumundhir to take care of the Muslim affairs in Madina. There were only forty people guarding this caravan.
The Muslim did not manage to intercept the caravan because the news of the Muslims plan had
reached Abu Sufyan who managed to use a different route. He even informed the Quraish through a
letter that he had managed to escape using the sea rout but Abu Jahal insisted by saying that the
Arabs should see, hear and understand that we are powerful people. The Quraish had set out more
than 1000 people with 750 camels, 100 horses, 600 of the men were wearing iron amours.
When he learnt about the plan of the Quraish, he then consulted with his companions and they agreed to go ahead and fight the Quraish army. Muslim army had only 313 men armed with swords, 76 camels and two horses. The prophet said to his companions, “Allah promised me one of the two either the caravan or the army.” This was justified by the following revelation:
‘Just as your Lord ordered you out of your houses in truth,even though a party among the
disbelievers dislike disputing with you concerning the truth after it was made clear,as if they were
being driven to death and they (actually)saw it. Behold God promised you one of the two parties
(enemy), that should be yours; you wished that the one unarmed should be yours but God willed
to justify the truth according to his words and the roots of the unbelievers.’ [Q: 8:5-7].
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The prophet then received Wahyipermitting them to fight thus:
“To those against whom war is made permission is granted to fight because they are wronged and verily God is most powerful for their aid. They are who have been expelled from their homes in defiance of right (for no cause) except that they say “Our Lord is our God” [Q: 22: 29-40].
“Fight in the cause of God those who fight you, but do not transgress limits, for God loves not transgressors. And slay them wherever you catch them, turn them out from where they have turned you out for tumult and oppression are worse than killing but fight them not at the sacred mosque unless they first reward of those who suppress faith. But if they cease, God is oftforgiving, most merciful” [Q: 2: 190-192]
The tribes of Bani Adiy and Ibn Zuhraafter learning that their trade caravans were safe, they did not participate in this battle.The prophet sent Ali Bin Talib, Zubeir Bin Awwam and Saad Abi Waqqas to the wells of Badr to find out about the Quraish army. They found out that it consisted of Utba and Shayba sons of Rabia, Hakim Ibu Khizam, Tuamin Bin Adiy, Nufalah Bin Khuwaylid,Abdul Baghtary bin Hisham, Iraath Bin Amr, Annadhar Bin Aswad, Umayyad Bin KhalafandAmr Bin Hisham(Abu Jahal). This was a very strong army but the Muslims had to go for war. Habbab Bin Mundhir suggested that they should camp at the water source to deny the Quraish access. When the Quraish reached Badr, they rushed for water but the Muslims stopped them. The prophet allowed them access to the water, a move which touched Hakim Bin Hazath who suggested to Utba Rabin to give up the battle. However Abu Jahal opposed him.
Traditionally the Arab battles used to start with a combat between a few pairs were appointed from the two armies before the main battle; this is referred to as a duel. In this battle it involved Hamza Bin Abdul Muttalib, Ali Bin Abu Twalib and Ubeid Bin Harith from the Muslim’s side, againstUtba bin Rabia, his brother Shayba bin Rabia and Utba’s son al Walid from the Quraish. Shayba was defeated and killed by Hamza; Walid was also killed by Ali. Ubeid and Utba drew each dealt a death blow to the other but Ubeid died on the way back while Utba died on the sport.
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As the Quraish army was advancing Prophet raised his hands and prayed to Allah (S.W.T) and said, “O Allah! Should this group (of Muslims) be defeated today, you will no longer be worshipped.” As a result of this dua, Allah sent angels to assist the Muslims. Allah says in theQuranthus:“Remember you implored the assistance of your Lord and He answered you; I will assist you with a thousand Angels ranks on ranks.”[Q: 8:9]
The Quraish saw the number of Muslims increasing and they started retreating.The Muslims fought
with courage and emerged victorious in this battle. The Muslims considered their victory as having
come from Allah. It is said in the Quran by Allah (S.W.T),‘It is not you who slew them; It was
Allah: When you threw (a handful of dust) it was not your act but Allah’s: Inorder that He might
test the believers by a gracious trial from Himself: For God is He who hears and knows (all
By the end of the battle, 70 enemies were killed and 70 others taken as captives. Only 14 Muslims were killed. The relatives of the 70 captives were told to pay a ransom or the captives should teach Muslims how to read and write in order to get their freedom.
Importance of the Battle
- It dealt a big blow to the dignity and honor of the Quarish who had considered
themselves superior for many years.
- It is considered as a symbol for success of the power of truth over falsehood.
- The assistance that Muslims got from Allah (S.W.T) strengthened their faith.
- The victory of the Muslims gave assured continuity to Islamwhich would have come
to an end had they been defeated.
- The prophet’s position as a spiritualand a state leaderwas confirmed by the Muslims
- It strengthened the spirit and moral of the prophet to continue with his mission of
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Reasons for the Muslims victory
Ø They had complete faith and confidence in Allah despite their number being few.On this
Allah (SWT) says,‘O ye who believe! If you will aid (The cause of Allah) He will aid you,
and plant your feet firmly.’[Q: 47:7]
Ø Unity of opinion within them.The prophet would ask for advice from the Muslim army
before they decided on any matter.
Ø They showed obedience, love and respect to the Prophet as their leader.
Ø Muslims love for the hereafter gave them courage to keep fighting,since they knew of
Allah(SWT) promise for those who fight for His course
Ø They were courageous, determined and zealous to win over the Quraish.
Ø Muslims were fighting for a proper reason that to ensure that the truth triumphs over
The battle of uhud: (3 a.h/625 c.e)
Map of the battle of uhud
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This battle took place by the hill of Uhud which is about three miles outside Makka.The Quraish advanced towards the Muslims in this battle due to the following reasons;
- They wanted to revenge against the Muslims after a humiliating defeat at the battle Badr.
- The Quarish wanted to re-establish their supremacy among the Arabs which they had lost
during the battle of Badr.
- They wanted to kill the prophet and bring Islam to an end before it was too late.
- The Quarish wanted to guarantee the safety of its caravan route to Syria which had been the
main cause for the battle of Uhud.
Events of the battle
Abbas, the prophet’s uncle informed him of the plan by the Quarish to attack the Muslims.The prophet preferred to remain in Madina to wait for the Quarish to attack but after consultation with the majority. A force of 1000 men set outfor the battle. The Quarish had gathered 3000 men, well equipped and better trained than their first army. This army was being led by Abusufian.They also brought several women to cheer them as they fought.
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Just before the battle began, Abdullah bin Ubayy the leaders of the hypocrites pulled out with an
army of 300 men and returned to Madina in the pretence of protecting Madina from within.As usual,
the battle began with single combats who were involved then the general attack developed.The
prophet placed 50 archives to protect the entrance into the hill with clear instructions not to leave
When the Quraish were being defeated, they started running away leaving their booty behind, the Muslims soldiers became greedy of the booty and they left the entrance unguarded and went for the left booty.
Khalid bin Walid, the commander of the Quarish army saw the unguarded passage and instructed a section of the enemy to make a surprise attack from behind the hill of Uhud.This sudden attack caused confusion among the Muslims such that they thought the prophet had died until when he shouted, “Iam Mohammed Bin Abdullah.Iam the messenger of Allah. I have come with the truth.” These words gave courage to the companions who started fighting again.Sayyiduna Abu-Bakr and Ali ran to the prophet and protected him from being killed. He was hit on the face by falling rocks and spears and he lost two teeth.
When the Muslims turned the tide of the battle, the Quarish started fleeing out of fear of defeat. The
Muslims suffered a great loss in this battle. Seventy Muslims lost their lives among them Hamza the
uncle of the prophet. His body was mutilated and Hind the wife of Abusufian ate his kidney. The
prophet vowed to revenge the death of his uncle but Allah(S.W.T) sent the following verse:
“And if you punish, inflict the same punishment as has been afflicted on you. But if you bear
patiently, it is certainly better for those who are patient; be patient for the reward of your patience is
from Allah (S.W.T). ao not feel sad nor distress yourself because of their plotting.”[Q: 16:127]
Only 22 Quarish were killed. Following this verse, the prophet was patient and did not revenge.
IMPORTANCE OF THE BATTLE OF UHUD
- It showed the significance of the Muslims to follow their leaders’ commands i.e. the
archers left the entrance unguarded disregarding the prophet’s not to leave the passage.
- It awakened the believers to their responsibility as protectors of their divine mission
- It taught Muslims to bear hardships in their mission.
- It explains the status of the prophet as the believed messenger of Allah and the love and
mercy Allah had towards the Muslims.
- The Muslims learnt that they shouldn’t be greedy for wealth
- They learnt that victory and defeat are in the hands of Allah
- They learnt never to under estimate an enemy.
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- The Makkans regarded it as their first defeat over the Muslims.
- Muslims learnt to be patient and a verse was revealed telling the prophet to show
patience to the martyrs of his uncle Hamza.
- It clearly differentiated the hypocrites like, Abdullah Ibn Ubayy from the true Muslims.
- Muslims learnt that Allah doesn’t grant victory without a proper cause.
- Muslims learnt the importance of consultation.
- It teaches leaders to accept the opinion of the majority.
- Women are allowed to participate in battles as long as their presence doesn’t cause an
alarm e.g. Ummu Ammarah who was injured while protecting the prophet.
The Battle of Khandaq (The Trench)
This is also called the battle of Al Ahzab (tribes) because it was planned by the Jewish tribes together with the Makkans in 5 A.H (627 C.E).The defeat of the Muslims at Uhud had lowered their prestige with the Arab tribes. Some tribes which had previously supported Muslims started drifting towards the Quarish. They even started attacking the different small Muslim groups.
The Jews, despite the treaty (Madina Constitution) with the Muslims were still very bitter and showed it openly. They had expected a prophet who would give them dominion and wealth, not one who would equate them to the Arabs. When they learnt that they could not use the prophet for their own ends, they tried to shake his mission and seduce his followers. They even declared the pagan religion as superior to Islam. They then joined forces with the Makkans and broke the treaty. The prophet had thus to take action and he expelled the two Jewish tribes; Banu Nadhir and Banu Qaynuqa from Madina.
A grand plan was now hatched to finish the Muslims. The Jews and Makkans incited all the tribes to raise arms against the Muslims in Madina. They also joined forces with the Jews of Oasis Khaybar and Banu Quraizah and had gathered an army of 24,000 men, led by Abu Sufyan. This was to bar any entrance into the city of Madina by the attacking Quraish.
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The messengers from Banu Khuza’a reached the prophet afterfour days, warning him of the armies
that were to arrive in a week. The Muslims could not be able to fight such a big army in the open
The prophet therefore gathered the Madinans to discuss the best strategy of overcoming the enemy.
Meeting the enemy in the open, and waiting for them inside the city were both suggested. Lastly, the
outnumbered Muslims opted to engage in a defensive battle by digging deep trenches to act as a
barrier along the northern front. This suggestion was introduced by Salman al Farsy, aPersian. Every
capable Muslimin Madina including the prophet himself contributed to the digging of large and deep
trench in six days. It was dug on the northern side only to obstruct any entry into the city. The other
parts of Madina weresurrounded by Rocky Mountains and trees, impenetrable to large
armies.Muslims established their headquarters at the hillock of Sala’ a position which would give
them an advantage in case the enemy crossed the trench.The final army that would defend the city
from the invasion consisted of 3,000 men, and included all inhabitants of Madina over the age of 15,
except the Banu Qurayzawho had supplied the Muslims with some instruments for digging the
When the attacking army reached Madina, they found the 15 inch ditch obstructing. They made several attempts to cross but they could not and thus they decided to lay a siege for about 27 days. At last continuous failure and increasing difficulties like lack of food, created distrust among the allies. On the 27thday of the siege, a terrible cyclone with heavy rains created havoc in the enemy. They decided to raise the siege and return to their homes.
Results of this battle
- Muslims became victorious over the Quraish in this battle.
- Islam established itself as the absolute master of Madina.
- Muslims were able to take full control of Madina without interference from the Makkans
- It gave more prestige to the prophet and the Muslims making the Arab tribes to have an
admiration of Islam.
- Swafiyyah, the daughter of the Jewish chief (a tribe which had bitterly opposed the Muslims)
was married by the prophet (P.B.U.H) after this battle thus decreasing the differences
between the Jews and the Muslims.
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- The power of Munafiqun was finally broken and the Arabs all over the provinces started
admiring the Muslims.
The Treaty of Hudaibiyah (6th Dhul Qad 6 A.H/628 C.E)
The next year after the battle of Khandaq, the prophet together with 1400 Muslims left Madina for
Makka to perform Umra (lesser pilgrimage). Muslims were instructed by the prophet not to carry
any weapons except swords since it waspurely a religious journey. Due to the strenuous relationship
with the Makkan Quraish, they could not enter Makka directly. Therefore, theycamped at the valley
of Hudaibiyah, a few milesaway from Makka and sent word to Makka that they had come for Umra
and not to wage war. The first messenger Kharash bin Umayya was arrested immediately but later
released; his camel’s legs were chopped off. Uthman was sent as a second emissary but he was
locked up in a room full of smoke for three days. Due to this, a battle almost started between the two
but was suspended when Uthman was released unharmed.At night, the Makkans used to sneak into
the Muslims army to spy but they learnt that the Muslims were carrying out their activities very
peacefully. This finally convinced the Quraish leaders that the Muslims had not come for war and
they agreed to send representativeled by Suhali Ibn Amirto sign a truce with the Muslims in which
the following terms were agreed:-
o There should be no hostilities between the Muslims and Makkans for ten years.
o The prophet and the Muslims was to return to Madina that year without performing
o Makkan Muslims who left their people without permission were to be returned to
Makka and never be allowed to stay in Madina while Muslims who escaped from
Madina to Makka would be welcomed and never returned to the Muslims.
o No arms apart from swords would be carried by the Muslims when they go to Makka
the following year
o Any Arab tribe was free to befriend itself with the Muslims or pagan Quarish. o None of the terms would be changed for the next ten years.
Most of the terms of the truce were friendly to the Quarish and there was a general dissatisfaction among the Muslims until when Allah (S.W.T) revealed the following verse about the treaty,
“Lo, we have given you (Mohammad) a signal victory that Allah (S.W.T) may forgive you of the
sin that which is past and that which is to come, and may perfect his favors unto you and may
guide you on a right path, And that Allah (S.W.T) may help you with strong help”[ Q:48:1-3]
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This verse proved to be true by the events which followed the treaty of Hudaibiyah i.e.
- Muslims got a break of rest from the Makkan attacks.
- Muslims were able to mix freely with any tribe they wanted.
- There were many Makkans who got a closer view of Islam through the interaction and were
able to embrace Islam e.g. Khalidbin Walid, Suhail bin Amir, Amr bin al’As.
- It showed that the prophet was a great leader.
- The Prophet was able to send teachers to other parts of Arabia.
- The prophet had enough time to concentrate on his divine mission because there was peace
- It assured safe access of the Muslims to Makka their holy city the following year.
- It made the Makkan Quarish recognize Islam as an equal power with them as they withdrew
from the war arena.
Lessons from the treaty of Hudaibiyah
- Allah (S.W.T) is always on the side of those who are sincere.
- Muslims should always have faith in Allah (S.W.T).
- Victory always comes from Allah (S.W.T) especially to those who are pious and
- Muslims should always aspire to spread peace despite intimidation
- Muslims should be patient at all times and in all situations.
- Muslims cant enter into agreement with non-Muslims for sake of peace
- The prophet was a recognized, wise and an able leader
- Forgiveness should be fostered in the hearts of Muslims
The Prophet’s Invitation of Foreign Rulers to Islam
With peace having been established in Arabia after signing the treaty of Hudaibiyya, the prophet
decided to concentrate more on his divine mission. He started by sending envoys to the following
- a) Abyssinia.
The prophet sent Amr bin Umayyah Ad-Damri to the Negus of Abyssinia by the name
Ashamah.This delegation was warmly received and treated well. Some sources say that the king
embraced Islamsecretly since Abyssinia was a r hristian country. He replied, “In the name of Allah
the Most Gracious the Most Merciful. O prophet of Allah! And mercy and blessings from Allah
beside whom there is no god.I have received your letter in which you have mentioned about Jesus
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and by the Lord of the heaven and the, Jesus is not more than what yousay. We fully acknowledge that which you have been sent to us and we have entertained your cousin and his companions. I bear witness that you are the messenger of Allah true and confirming (those who have come before you).I pledge to you through your cousin and surrender myself through him to the Lord of the worlds.” When this Negus later died in Rajab 9 A.H the prophet announced his death and observed the funeral prayer in absentia for him.He was succeeded by another King to whom the prophet sent a letter but however it is not confirmed as to whether he accepted Islam or not.
- b) Persia
Abdallah Ibn Hudhaifa was sent with a letter to Perevez the emperor of Persia inviting him to
Islam..The king was arrogant and proud and after reading it he got infuriated and mistreated the
envoy. He thought that the language in the letter was too harsh for an emperor and also the prophet’s
name should nothave appeared above his, he therefore tore the letter into pieces. He then sent his
men to arrest the prophet and bring him to his palace.When the envoy reported back to the prophet,
he prayed for the Persian Empire to disintegrate.No sooner had the Persia emperors envoy reached
Madina than the Prophet (P.B.U.H) received divine inspiration that Perevez had died.His successor
was unable to maintain the unity in the emperor leading to its complete disintegration.
- c) Roman Empire.
Dihya bin Khalifa al-Kalbi was sent to king Heraclius of Byzantine. He welcomed him well, read the
letter but did not embrace Islam, however he send them with many presents to take to the prophet. The tribe of Judham intercepted the convoy at a place called Husma and robed them. When the prophet heard of this, he dispersed an army and inflicted heavy losses on those people. One the prophet ordered that all the captives and spoils of war be returned.
- d) Egypt.
Hatiib bin Abi Baltaah was send to the king of Egypt (Muqawqis) called Juraij bin Matta.He read the
letter and accepted the message though he was disappointed that the prophet did not come from Syria as it was expected. However he sent presents two maids from noble Coptic families, Maria, and Syrin; clothing, and stead for riding on but he did not accept Islam The prophet married Maria who bore him Ibrahim while Syrin was married to Hassan bin Thabit al Ansaari.
Find out more other leaders to whom the prophet send emissaries.
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The fall of Khaybar (7 A.H)
Khaybar was a strong fold of the two Jewish tribes of Banu Nadhir and Banu Qainuqa. It is about
200 miles from Madina. These Jews with the help of neibouring Arab tribes were planning to attack
Madina. They had joined forces with the Bedouins of Ghatafah.The prophet learned of their plot and
gathered 1,400 men including 200 horse men. When the Muslims reached Khaibar and saw their
opponents, the prophet prayed, “O Allah, we wish prosperity and we seek your refuge from evils
The Muslims stopped at a place150 miles in the valley of at Raji to prevent the men of Khaibar from reinforcing the Jews. There were eight fortressess at Khaibar all garrisoned with armed men.They included; the fortresses of Na’im, Ubai, An-Nizar, AZ-Zubair, As-Sa’b bin Mu’ath, Al Watih, AsSulalim and Al- Qamus. A fierce fight took place around these fortresses and in a few days the Muslims had captured all of them. This was after a siege of 20 days. The booty was shared among the victorious Muslims. The Jews were however allowed to retain their lands on condition that they would pay half of the produce to the Islamic state. The prophet then married Swafiyyah a daughter of a leading Jewish chief in order to strengthen the friendship with the Jews.
The conquest of Makka. (20th Ramadhan5.A.H)
When Islam was well established in the hearts of the Muslims, Allah decided that the time had come for His Messenger and his community to enter Makkah. They would purify the Ka’bah so that it would be a blessed place of guidance for the whole world. They would restore Makkah to its previous status and the sacred city would offer security for all people once again.
The terms of the treaty of Hudaibiyah had given freedom of association to both Muslims and theQuraish.The Muslims befriended the Banu Khuza’ah while the Quraish allied with the BanuBakr. These two tribes had been enemy since the Pre Islamic time but now they were to respect the terms of the treaty of Hudaibiyah and stop attacking each other.
For some years, the Quarish respected the treaty of Hudaibiyah until when the Banu Bakr attacked
the tribe of Banu Khuza’ah which was allied to theMuslims at a place called Al-Wateer.The
Quraishsupported the tribe of BanuBakr with men and arms. They attacked the Banu Khuza’ah at
night who had to take refuge in the Holy sanctuary. This event led to the aggrieved Banu Khuza’ah
to seek for justice from the Muslims. As a result the prophet laid down three conditions for the
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1.To pay blood money for the victims of Banu Khuza’ah.
2.To end their friendship with Banu Bakr.
3.To consider the truce of Hudaibiyah to have been nullified.
Out of the three conditions, the Quraish accepted the cancellation of the treaty.
The prophet then gathered 10,000 armed men and headed for Makkah. As they were advancing
towards Makka, more and more tribes joined them on the way. At Juufa,Al Abnas bin Abdul
Mutwalib came to join them. The army marched and camped at Marr a Zahran.When Makkans
heard of the news, they sent Abusufian to spy on the Muslim’s camp. He was however detected by
Abbas the uncle of the prophet and Muslim guards presented him to the prophet. The prophet did not
punish him but made him stand on a high ground to see the spectacle of the Muslim army marching
The prophet divided his forces into different groups with each having its leader. Abu ubaida bin jarrah led the Muhajirun accompanied by the prophet himself. Zubeir Bin Awwam was on the left moving in a parallel column. The western entrance of the city was controlled by Saad Bin Ubaid while Khalid Bin Walid with the Bedouin contingent was to circle the whole city on the west and enter it from the south.
The uncle of the prophet Abass, who had embraced Islam, was escorting Abusufyan. He adviced him
to embrace Islam which he did.Abusufyan had wanted negotiations but the Muslim army refused and
entered Makkah. The prophet instructed them not to shed any blood.tIn order to reakize this goal,and
conquer Makka peacefully,he made the following announcement; “ Those who shelter in the kaaba
are safe, those who shelter in Abu Sufyans house are safe and those who stay in their own houses are
Despite the peaceful entry of Muslims into Makka, a group of Makkans rushed and attacked the
Muslim group under Khalidbin Walid. As a result two Muslims and twelve non believers were
The prophet then entered the Kaaba and cast down all idols while recitingthe following verse of the Quran,
“The truth has come and false hood gone, verily falsehood is ever vanishing.”
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A green flag was hoisted on the Kaaba and Bilal bin Rabah then made the Adhan and the prophet led a thanks giving prayer (SwalatulShukr).The prophet then addressed a huge gathering and said,“There is no god except Allah .No one can be associated with him. He has fulfilled his promise. He has helped his servant and has shattered all bands alone. All the prides, all the prices of the family are under my heal. All the men are descendants of Adam and Adam was made of clay”.
The Makkan leaders who had been oppressing the Muslims were among the crowd and the prophet asked them, “ao you know how I am going to treat you?”They replied, “eou are a noble brother and noble nephew we expect nothing but good from you.”The prophet said, “There is no revenging against you today and you are all free.” The prophet then climbed on the hill of swafa and gave a sermon to all the Makkans to swear loyalty to Islam. Men and women came to accept Islam. Hind, the wife of Abu Jahal was among the women. The prophet forgave her. He also forgave Ikrimah Bin Abu Jahal who also accepted Islam. The prophet remained in Makkah for 15 days. After the conquest of Makka the prophet organized his troupes to go and attack the Roman Empire at Tabuk and the Banu Khawazin and Banu Thaqif.
Significance of the conquest of Makkah
- It showed the purity of the Kaaba as the house of Allah and a place for monotheism.
- Victory meant the supremacy of the Great Lord rather than ambition for power. This is
why the prophet first thanked Allah and then purified the Kaaba.
- By the Prophets act of forgiveness, he was laying emphasis on the noble Islamic
principle of brotherhood and peace.
- Many Makkans embraced Islam and even women pledged to worship non but Allah and
to lead a clean life.
- It singles out the hrophet’s unique character of patience and wisdom.
Question: compare and contrast the conquest of Makka and the unsuccessful attack by Abraha in the year of the elephant.
The Battle of Hunain
The conquest of Makka triggered mass conversion of Arabs to Islam in many parts of the Arabian
Peninsula.Although a large number of Makkans and neighboring tribes embraced Islam, some only
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accepted Mohammed as a ruler of Arabia but didn’t believe in his prophet hood.Among the tribes that were opposing the Muslims included: Khawazin, Thaqif, Jusham, Saad Bin Bakr and Bani Hilal .The prophet was informed that the tribes of Khawazin and Thaqif were preparing to fight the Muslims. The prophet at once proceeded towards them with an army of 12,000 men including recently converted Muslims and about 2000 non Muslim of Makka who had accompanied them as allies. The enemies were 4000. The Muslims were over confident because this was the biggest army they had ever raised.
The battle took place in the field of Hunaian on Saturday 19th of Shawwal about nineteen days after the conquest of Makka. The enemy marched at night towards the Muslimarmy under their leader Malik bin Auf and strategically hid in the valley. The next day in the morning, the prophet was organizing his forces for the battle not knowing that the enemies’ troupes were hiding in the nearby valley.The enemy then longed a surprised attack which disorganized the Muslim who scattered in all directions looking for safety passing the prophet unaware. Abass ibn Abdul Mutwilib shouted loudly unto the Muslims.
“O Ansaar, O Muhajirun O men who pledge their allegiance under the tree, where are you
going?The messenger of Allah is here. r ome back to him.” The Muslims were gripped with shame
over their cowardly conduct since they had always pledged to die with the prophet. They came back
shouting “At your command!” They lounged a counter attack. Soon the enemy realized they would
face complete defeat and they started fleeing leaving behind their children, women and property.
Even though the Muslims were victorious, they paid dearly a number of Muslims were wounded and
twelve killed. The victory however brought supremacy to the Muslims. The enemy ran and took
refuge at the city of Thaqif the capital of the tribe. The Muslims decided to lay a siege on the city.
When the help of Aws, the Muslims bombarded Taif, their Orchard were destroyed until the enemy
sent an appeal to the prophet to stop the destruction upon which he temporarily withdrew the Muslim
The Muslims then went to share the booty of the Khawazin. Some of the enemies surrendered and embraced Islam. Those converts requested for the release of their women and children a request which was granted by the prophet. This gesture of mercy pleased them so much that more and more embraced Islam.
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The prophet then sent the Khawazin to go and tell Malik bin Auf that if he converted to Islam, his family would be given back to him and an additional gift of 100 camels. He happily converted and the prophet fulfilled his promise to him.
The following verses were revealed following the events of Hunain, 9:25-28 “Assuredly Allah did help you in many battle fields and on the day of Hunain: Behold! Your great numbers elated you, but they availed you not; the land, for all that is wide, did constrain and you turned back in retreat. But Allah did pour His calm on the Messenger and on the believers, and sent down forces which you saw not: He punished the unbelievers, thus does he reward those without faith”
The Muslims learnt that victory is in the hands of Allah and that number is not significant to victory. They also had to be faithful to their leaders and show trust in Allah.
In this battle, 6000 men were taken as captives. It sohappenedthat Bani sa’ad was among the
prisoners. This was the tribe which had suckled the prophet, a woman who claimed to be Shima and
had been a foster sister to the prophet 60 year ago reminded the prophet of the scar (white mark) he had caused her when she was carrying him on the back. This memory touched the prophet and he freed all the prisoners from BanuThaqif and Banu Sa’ad. Later on he released all the other prisoners the prophet then went back to Madina.
The farewell address
At the age of 63 years, the prophet (P.B.U.H) went to perform pilgrimage in 10 A.H. This is called
Hijatul Widaa (The farewell pilgrimage) More than one hundred thousand Muslims camefor Hajj on
the 9th of ahul Hijja at the valley of Arafat. This was to be the prophet’s last pilgrimage. It was
during this Hajj that Sura al Nasr was revealed which was received as an announcement of the
prophets approaching death. After the pilgrimage, theprophet then made his farewell address in
which he said:
“O people, listen to me for I do not know whether you will find me amongst you next year. O people, verily, your blood, your property and your honor are sacred and inviolable until you appear before your Lord, as this day and this month is sacred for all verily you will meet your Lord and your will answerable to your action.
Have I not conveyed my message? Allah is my witness. He who has any trust on him should restore
it to the person who deposited it with him. Beware; no one committing a crime is responsible for it
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but himself. Neither the son is responsible of the crime of the father nor is the father responsible for
the crime of the son. O people! Listen to my words and understand them. You must know that a
Muslim is a brother of the Muslim and they form one brotherhood. Nothing of his brother is lawful
for a Muslim except what he himself allows willfully. So you should not oppress one another.
Behold all practices of paganism and ignorance is under my feet. The blood revenges of the days of
ignorance are remitted. Usury is forbidden but you will be entitled to recover your principal. Do not
wrong and you shall not be wronged. Be kind to your women folk verily they have got certain rights
Verily I have left among you the book of Allah (S.W.T) and the Sunna of his apostle which if you hold fast you shall never go astray. And feed your slaves; and cloth them with the clothes that you yourselves wear.
Behold, worship your lord; offer prayers five times a day, observe fast in the month of Ramadhan,make pilgrimage to the house, pay readily the Zakat on your property and obey whatever I command you only then will you get into the heaven.”
What lessons do you learn from this farewell address?
Demise of the prophet.(12th Rabiul-Awwal 11 A.H/632 C.E)
After the farewell address, the prophet returned to Madina at the end of the month of Dhul Hijja. On
Monday 12th Saffar the prophet felt a severe headache and his health started deteriorating.During this
period of illness, he spent most of his time in the house of Lady Aisha. Occasionally, he would go
out to meet the Muslims, advice them and ask for the congregations forgiveness.When his condition
grew worse and he could not lead the Muslims in prayer, he requested Abubakar to take charge of
the religious duties. On the last day of his life, the prophet could be heard saying, “With those on
whom you have bestowed your grace, with the prophet and the truthful ones, themartyrs and the
good doers. O Allah, forgive me and have mercy upon me and join me to the most exalted
companionship on high” He repeated the last words three times. auring all this time, Aisha (RAA)
was sprinkling water on his forehead until when finally the prophet passed on at the age of 63. His
body was washed and then a grave dug at the very place he had died and the prophet was burried.
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ACHIEVEMENT OF THE PROPHET
- a) Brotherhood and equality of mankind
Islam is the religion of the Unity of God and the Equality of Mankind. Lineage, riches and family
pride are accidental things; virtue and the service of humanity are the real matters of merit.
Distinctions of colour, race and creed are non-existent within the bounds of Islam. All humans
comprise one family. Islam has succeeded in welding the ‘black’ and the ‘white’ into one fraternal
whole. The strict rule of brotherhood is set firm with the following saying of the Prophet
Muhammad (P.B.U.H):”No one of you is a believer in God until he loves for his brother what he
loves for himself.”
- b) Elimination of racism
Racism is one of the severe diseases eating up the human society in this day and age. Everyone remembers how black Africans were transported across the oceans, packed in specially designed ships, thought of, and treated like livestock. They were made slaves, forced to change their names, religion and language. They were not entitled to hope for true freedom, and were denied the least of human rights: basic needs. Even though among some Western people, the attitude to non-Westerners has fortunately changed little in modern times, the political and social condition of black people often remain the same, even where they live amid the native Westerners as theoretically equal fellow-citizens; that of despised inferiors.
When Allah’s Messenger, (h.B.U.H) was raised as a hrophet, the same kind of racism, under the name of tribalism, was prevalent in Makkah. The Quraish considered themselves as peculiar, and Arabs in general, thought they weresuperior to all the other races of the world. Allah’s Messenger came with the Divine Message and proclaimed that no Arab is superior over a non-Arab, and no white is superior over black and superiority in the eyes of Allah(S.W.T) is by righteousness and fearing Him alone (Surat Al-Hujurat, 49:13). He also declared that even if an Abyssinian Black Muslim were to rule over Muslims, he should be obeyed.
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Allah’s Messenger eradicated the problem of racial discrimination so successfully that superiority is not by birth or colour or blood, but by God-fearing and righteousness.
The message of Islam is for the entire human race. According to Islam, Allah (S.W.T) is the God of the entire world and Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) is a messenger for the whole of mankind. Islam unites the entire human race under one banner without any kind of discrimination.
Allah (S.W.T) says “O Mankind! We have created you from a male and female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you in the sight of Allah is he who has most Taqwa among of you. Verily, Allah is All-Knowing, AllAware.”[Q: 49:13]
Allah (S.W.T) says, “And one of His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth and the
diversity of your tongues and colors; most surely there are signs in this for the learned.”[Q: 30:22]
With this verse, Islam declares equality among people as one human race, one humanity, that is because Islam respectsa person as a creation of Allah(S.W.T) and not for any other reason; Islam does not distinguish between two races, or two groups of people, or between two colors, and the Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) addressed the people signifying that concept during the farewell pilgrimage, saying: “O People! Your God is one; your father is one; no preference of an Arab over non-Arab nor of a non-Arab over an Arab or red over black nor black over red except for the most righteous. Verily the most honored of you is the most righteous.”
- c) Eradication of slavery
Apart from giving the slaves their rights, Islam also took a step ahead and discouraged slavery from
being practiced. It is seen in history that slaves were mistreated in the non-Islamic world. Not only were they verbally abused, but also physically hurt. During the period of his prophet hood, Muhammad worked diligently to do what he could to cut down on their numbers. Islam closed most of the doors leading to slavery and encouraged the freeing of slaves in many ways. He constantly exhorted those who owned slaves to treat them kindly and well. He insisted that they must treat the slaves fairly and with mercy. The Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) says:
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If the owner of a slave beat his slave or abused him, the only compensation that he could make was to set the slave free. (Sahih Muslim)
The Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) alwaysencouraged and devised ways of freeing slaves on every pretext. He said:
“If a person owning a slave sets him free, God will, in recompense save every part of his body.Corresponding to every part of the slave’s body from the torment of Hell.” (Sahih Muslim) Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) with Divine Inspiration from Allah (S.W.T) forbade such acts. Masters could not abuse their slaves and had to give them the same food as they ate and dress them in the clothes they wore.
Narrated by Al-Ma’rur, “I met Abu ahar who was wearing a cloak, and his slave, too, was wearing a similar one. I asked about the reason for it. He replied, “I abused a person by calling his mother with bad names.” The Prophet said to me, ‘O Abu Dhar! Did you abuse him by calling his mother with bad names you still have some characteristics of ignorance. Your slaves are your brothers and Allah has put them under your command. So whoever has a brother under his command should feed him of what he eats and dress him of what he wears. Do not ask them (slaves) to do things beyond their capacity (power) and if you do so, then help them.’ “[Bukhari, Vol.1, Book 2, #29]
In another Hadith, The Prophet said, “Your servants and your slaves are your brothers. Anyone who has slaves should give them from what he eats and wears. He should not charge them with work beyond their capabilities. If you must set them to hard work, in any case, I advise you to help them” (Al-Bukhari).
- d) Improvement of status of women
The Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) was very serious in improving the condition of women in society
and on securing for them a position of dignity and fair and equitable treatment.
Just before his death, one of the injunctions he addressed to Muslims and laid stress upon was
that they should always treat women with kindness and consideration. Holy Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “If a man has daughters and he makes arrangement to have
them educated and takes pains with their upbringing, aod would save him from the torment of Hell.”
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Before Islam, women were sold as personal commodities. Female children were buried alive
because they were considered as curse for family. It is Islam that gave every respect and honor to
women, and brought them at the level of men; otherwise women were mistreated in every sphere of
life. Islam always provides equal rights and equal opportunities for men and women, as the Holy
Surely, men who submit themselves to God and women who submit themselves to Him, and believing men and believing women, and obedient men and obedient women, and truthful men and truthful women, and men steadfast in their faith and steadfast women, and men who are humble and women who are humble, and men who give alms and women who give alms, and men who fast and women who fast, and men who guard their chastity and women who guard their chastity and men who remember Allah much and women who remember Him—Allah has prepared for all of them forgiveness and a great reward. (Holy Quran, 33:36)
Islam also permits equal opportunities to women to seek knowledge with men. It is entirely a wrong notion; such concept is never presented by Islam. The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) says in this regard, “It is the duty of every Muslim man and Muslim woman to seek knowledge”.
The Holy Quran says:
He it is who created you from a single soul and made there from its mate, that he might find comfort in her. And when he knows her, she bears a light burden and goes about with it. And when she grows heavy, they both pray to Allah, their Lord, saying, ‘If thou gives us a good child, we will surely be of the thankful.’ [Q: 7:190]
In connection with the respect, honor and status of woman as a mother, the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) has a great regard. Once, a Companion consulted him to seek advice to participate in a war, when he askaed, “Do you have a mother?” He said, “Yes.” Then Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) said, “Be with her, because paradise is under her feet.” (Nasa’i)
“haradise lies under the feet of your mothers.” This indicates the outstanding status of woman in Islam far superior than granted by any other religion of the world. No other religion comes close to the prominence given to women by the Holy Prophet of Islam.
Once a companion of the Holy Prophet of Islam asked, “O Apostle of Allah! To whom should I show kindness?” He replied, “eour mother, next your mother, next your mother, and then comes your father, and then your relatives in order of relationship.” (Abu aawud)
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- e) Religious Tolerance
Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) was a role model for religious freedom, for instance when the
Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) entered the city of Medina, he made a formal constitution with the large Jewish population of the city, and indeed, this was a historic moment and in this constitution it guaranteed religious freedom for those who were and weren’t Muslims.Once the people of Mecca said to Prophet Muhammad that if god did not want them to worship idols then why He does not forcefully prevent them from doing so. Then God sent the following message:
“(O Muhammad) This is not a new excuse; those who left before them made, the same excuses. Is there anything upon the messengers except the dear conveying of the message” [Q: 16: 3])
The Qur’an clearly says that religion cannot be forced on anyone. It says,
“There is no compulsion in (accepting) the religion (of Islam)…”
Why? Because:”truly the right way has become clearly distinct from error.” [Q: 2:25]
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Suggested study questions and activities.
Answer the following questions in your I.R.E revision exercise book.
1.a) Narrate the early life of the prophet.
b)Identify the methods of persecutions experienced by the early Muslims.
2.a) Give reasons why Muslims migrated to Abbysinia.
b)Outline the lessons Muslims learn from the battle of Uhud.
3.a) How did the treaty of Hudaibiyya prove a success for the Muslims?
b)Write down ten teachings we learn from the prophet’s farewell pilgrimage.
4.a) Explain the lessons the Muslims learnt in the battle of uhud.
b)Discuss the challenges faced by the Muslims when they first arrived in madina. Activities.
- Compare the practices of todays Muslims with that of the Arabs during the
Jahiliya. Are there any similarities?
- Dramatize how the battle of Badr was fought.
- Compare and contrast the conquest of Makka with the unsuccessful attack by
Abraha Ashram during the year of the elephant
In every society we have prominent people whose prominence may be due to their leadership
positions or their general role towards the improvement of the society. Most of these personalities
are our heroes and we get motivated by them and have them as our role models. Do you know of any
such people in our contry? How have you been inspired by them? In the history of Islam, several
challenges have been met by the champions of Islam. In every century, we had leaders who
spereheaded the reforms and struggle for spread of Islam. We are therefore going to study some of
these schorlars in our secondary syllabus. In each form, two scholars will be studied starting with
Sheikh al Amin Ali bin Mazrui and Abdallah Swaleh al Farsi.Let us now look at the Sheik al Amin
Ali bin Mazrui.
Sheikh Al Amin Mazrui (1891AD-1974 AD)
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His birth and early life.
His full name was Sheik Al-Amin bin Ali Abdallah al Mazrui from the Mazrui family. This was the
family which had been given the guardianship of Mombasa town after the expulsion of the
Portuguese by the Sultan of Oman since they originated from Oman. His grand father,Abdallah al-
Mazrui was an Islamic scholar belonging to the Shafi School of law. He was born in Mombasa 1891
on 15th Jamadu-Thani 1380 A.H/27th January 189.His father passed away when he was four years
old and thus his paternal Uncle Sheikh Suleiman bin Ali-Mazrui took the responsibility of raising
him who later married him off to his own daughter. He died on 1st April 1947 having left behind
three children, among them two sons (Harith Al-Amin Al-Mazrui-former Liwali of Lamu and
Professor Ali Mazrui-Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology) and a daughter.
His Educational background.
He started his elementary education under his Uncle Sheikh Suleiman bin Ali who was a great
scholar of that time and had studied various branches of knowledge. This branches included; Quran, Arabic language, Fiqh among others. His great thirst for knowledge made him travel to Zanzibar to further his education under the eminent scholars of Zanzibar likeSheikhAbdallahMohammad bin Salim Bakathir and Sayyid Ahmed Bin Abu Bakar bin Sumeyt.He later went to Lamu and graduated from Riyadh mosque under the supervision of re-known scholars of that time. He was a brilliant student and outstanding in all the subjects and he used to emerge top of the class.He was able to bring reforms in some of the Islamic scholarly works across the world.
Among the Muslim scholars who greatly influenced him are the following:
- Sheikh Jamalu-ddin Al-Afghani
- Sheikh Muhammad Abdul
- Sayyid Mohammad Rashid – Ridha
- He wrote Hidaayatul Atfaal (Guidance of children) which is an introductory book to Islam
for the children.
- He book entitled ‘Masomo ya dini’ (religious studies) is essential for the Swahili speakers.
- Majmaul Bahrayn (The meeting of two seas) is another essential publication in the study of
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- He wrote a weekly paper known as Al-Islah which constituted both Islamic teachings and
political issuesin Kiswahili and Arabic using the Arabic script. The message in this paper
was aimed at positively changing the societal way of thinking.
- He translated part of the Quran into Kiswahili, that is Sura al Fatiha, Al Baqara and and a few
verse of Al-Imran.
Achievements and Contributions of Al Amin Ali bin Mazrui.
Ø He authoured many publications. Typical among them being,
Ø He was the first to write books in Kiswahili to cater for the learning needs of his immediate
Ø He established Madrassatul Ghazali-l Islamiyya, a learning institution in which he taught
Islamic studies to students from all over East Africa.
Ø He donated most of his scholarly works to the libraries at the coast. Ø Become the Kadhi of Mombasa in 1932.
Ø He gave many Islamic lecturers in the mosques other Islamic institutions.
Ø He become the Chief Kadhi of Kenya in 1937after the death of his uncle Suleiman bin Ali al
Ø He is known for his efforts in propagating Islam all over East Africa. He used move all
around East Africa giving lectures.
Ø He was a writer, poet and editor of Kiswahili and Arabic languages.
Sheikh Abdullah Swaleh al-Farsy
Birth and early life
He was born on 12thof February, 1912 at Jongeani village in the Island of Zanzibar. He came from a
large and well established family; respected for the servicesthey used to provide in both educational
and civil life to the citizens of Zanzibar and PembaHe was the eldest child in this family. He studied
Quran recitation from Fatma Hamid Said who was a student of a renowned scholar, Sheikh Amin
At a very young age, sheikh Abdullah memorized the Quran with its correct recitation and a large portion of Hadith. He did not engage in leisurely activities as the other young people. At the age of twenty years he was so fluent and competent in Arabic Grammar and Nahwi that he could write poems in Arabic.
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Educational back ground
After completing the first phase of Islamic traditional education at Masjid Barza,Sheikh al-Farsy joined the first government school in Zanzibar at the age of ten;the Central Primary School of Zanzibar. He was so dedicated to attaining religious and secular education and he made use of both the afternoons and evenings to study. He was always seen engrossed in any new Islamic book and spent most times in his home library reading.
Zanzibar had retained some of the centuries old Islamic educational institutions. He therefore learnt from intellectual scholars like Sheikh Abubakar bin Abdullah Bakathir, Sheikh Ahmed bin Muhammad Al- Mlomry who taught him twenty five books and Sheikh Sayyid Alawy bin Abdul Wahab who taught him twelve books on Fiqh and Arabic. He then went to Kenya to seek more knowledge where he studied tafsir under Sheikh Al Amin bin Ali. He also studied Risalatul Jamiaat, a book on basicprinciples of Fiqh from Sayyid Hamid Maasab.
While he was in the secular school, he always emerged ahead of the other students in every subject. His excellence led him to completing eight year primary education in five years. He then joined a Teachers’ Training r ollege from which he graduated in1932.
He became a primary school teacher between 1932 and 1947 and, following a series of promotions for his good work, he was appointed the Inspector General of primary schools in Zanzibar and Pemba between 1949 and 1952. He later became the principal of Muslim Academy between 1952 and 1956, before being appointed the head teacher of the Arabic Medium School. In 1960, he went to perform Hajj after which he left the ministry of education in 1967 and became a teacher at the Teacher’s Training r ollege.
In 1960, he was appointed the chief Kadhi of Zanzibar, a post he held for seven years. It was after
the bloody CRUSADE incident in the name of Zanzibar Revolution in 1964 that he migrated to
Kenya. He was hosted by Sheikh Muhammad Kassim Al-Mazrui his former class mate in the class
of Al-Amin Ali Mazrui. Since his reputation as a scholar had reached far including Kenya, Sheikh
Muhammad Kassim Al-Mazrui recommended him to the late Jomo Kenyatta for the post of Chief
Kadhi of Kenya. He accepted the appointment and served for fourteen years until his retirement in
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In addition to teaching and preaching, he was a prolific writer. He used mwongozo wa Zanzibari to translate the Qur’an and answer questions from the masses. He wrote the biography of the prophet and that of Imam Shaffi. He also wrote a Kiswahili translation of the Qur’an in order to counter the translation of Dr. David Living Stone and Fr.Godfrey Dale of the University Mission to Central Africa (U.M.C.A) church of Zanzibar who had written a very shallow translation that was used by the preachers to defend Christianity. This Quran translation was also to clarify the misconception of the Qadianis who preached of the coming of another Prophet after Muhammad by the name Mirza Gulam Ahmad from Qadiani village in India.
Sheikh Abdullah Swaleh al Farsy passed on (died) on 9th November, 1982, just eight months after he had left Kenya to join his family in Muscat, Oman.
- He translated the Qur’an in Kiswahili i.e. “Qurani Takatifu.” Its first copy was published in
- He wrote the biography of the prophet.
- He also wrote the biography of Imam Shaffi.
- His Kiswahili publication was sura za swala na tafsiri zake.
- He also authored upotofu wa tafsiri ya Makadiani.
- He used to write the translation of the Qur’an in the weekly Mwongozo wa Zanzibar
- He wrote a book entitled Bid’a in which he fought against innovations (Bid’a).
- He wrote a book on mirath (inheritance).
His achievements and contributions
- He served in the field of education as a head teacher in Muslim Academy, Secondary School
and Arabic Medium School.
- He was appointed the Inspector General of primary schools in Zanzibar and Pemba to
spearhead the quality of education in these states.
- He proposed that community schools be staffed with Islamic teachers who should be paid by
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- He travelled to Nyasaland (Malawi) and Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) to give lectures on
Islamic Religious Education.
- In his position as a Chief Kadhi of both Zanzibar and Kenya he lodged defence against all
accusations directed to Islam and Muslims.
- He called for the establishment of separate schools for the Muslims.
- He wrote books strongly supporting provision of education and saw illiteracy as a menace to
both the government and its citizen.
- He urged the East African Muslims to adhere to the teachings of the Qur’an and the Sunnah
of the Prophet. As a result a number of young men became interested in studying Islam.
- He used the voice of Kenya radio to aireducative programs about Islam.
10.He wrote several religious books in both Arabic and Kiswahili that enlightened Muslims
about their religion.
11.He travelled throughout East Africa giving public speeches and lectures about Islam which
resulted in many embracing Islam.
12.He volunteered free services to the Radio of Zanzibar to propagate Islam.
13.He started campaigns against Bid’a (innovations) and refused Qadianism.
14.In Kenya, he was exposed to public debate where he criticized some of the traditional beliefs
including shirk and traditional dances.
15.He became a catalyst to the young men by giving mosque seminars.
Suggested study questions and class activities
Answer the following questions in your I.R.E revision exercise books.
- Describe the early life of Sheikh Abdallah Swaleh Al-Farsy.
- Explain the contributions made by Abdallah Swaleh Al-Farsy to the spread of
Islam in East Africa.
- Discuss the contribution made by Sheikh Al-Amin Mazrui in promoting
education in Kenya
- Outline the literary works left behind by of Al-Amin Ali Mazrui.
- Compare the achievements and contributions of Sheikh Al Amin bin Mazrui
and Abdallah Swaleh al Farsy.
- Find out from your immediate community some of the prominent Muslim
scholars and identify the common factors that can be attributed to their success
in the field of Academics.