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Seerah Competition 2017 Essay – Sofia Aleem

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Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) sent Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) as a prophet to guide people to Islam, but also as a role model. As Muslims, we are supposed to study his life, his experiences, his difficulties and take lessons from him because he was the closest to being a perfect person. His story comes with a lot of lessons but one of the most important is this verse from the Quran, ‘When things get really difficult, relief comes from Allah.” Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) went through many difficulties but his strong imaan and love for Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) allowed his ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) to stay strong and get relief from Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) during the Makkan period. This is shown through the deaths of his parents at a really young age, the conversion of Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him), and the year of sorrow.

The support from a community positively impacts those who have experienced recent loss. The impact of losing one’s parents, especially at a young age is difficult and often leads children and teenagers off of the path of Islam. They blame Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) with their pain and rebel against the teaching of the Quran, not realizing that everything happens for a reason. You can see this most clearly through when Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) lost both of his parents before the age of 8. However, Allah provided relief for the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) by leaving a support system in place for him. The extended family and community of Rasulullah ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) were kind to him ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) and raised him to be a good man. They supported him ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) through love of their own kin, love given by Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He). Because Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) had kin like Abdul Muttalib and Abu Talib, I lessened the negative impact his parent’s death had on him ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him). He ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) cared for his parents long after their death and mourned them, but the loneliness and angst you often see in adolescence was wiped away due to Allah’s will.

When one cannot speak for themselves, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) will send another to speak it for you. During the beginning of Islam, Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) had to keep Islam quiet due to the small numbers of Muslims that were from his family. When, eventually, people from Makkah found out, all Muslims from that time was targeted to the point where claiming your religion as Islam was taboo. It was a concerning time for Muslims, because all ready, there were the first martyrs of Islam: Yasir and Sumayyah. However, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) brought relief to them by the man Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him), who, ironically, was an opposer of Islam and had set out to kill Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him). Through Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He)’s will Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) heard the verses of Quran when he was at his sister’s after finding out she accepted Islam, and immediately repented and also accepted Islam. This was beneficial for the Muslims because Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) encouraged them to speak out proudly for their religion, strengthening their confidence. He was also someone who was frightening and provided Muslim’s protection. The conversion of Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) was a game changer for the Muslim community at that time and really helped them out.

With every situation one experiences, there are obvious negatives, but large positives. The Year of Sorrow was a very hard time, especially for the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) who was dealing with those who would not accept Islam and responded, often violently to the death of Khadijah raḍyAllāhu 'anha (may Allāh be pleased with her) and his uncle who did not convert, Abu Talib. Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) mourned their deaths, but remained a good and supportive prophet without letting these deaths take over his life. This was a test for the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) that he passed with flying colors and was rewarded with re-marriages to two women and his trip to Isra and Miraaj, when he ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) was gifted with the 5 times daily prayer. This gift was truly loved by the Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) and showed that even if Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) went through one of the most difficult years of his life, named the Year of Sorrow because, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) was still there for him and provided him ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) with relief.

As you can see through the Makkan period of Rasulullah ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)’s life that his faith in Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) provided him and the Muslim community a sense of relief and confidence to keep on preaching the religion of Islam. You could see this especially through Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)’s loss of his parental figures during his childhood, Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) accepting Islam, and the rewards of experiencing the Year of Sorrow. There were examples in our Prophet’s life and had lessons behind them as well. His ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him)’s loss of his parents and the support he received not only showed how Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) brought relief but also of the importance of community and family that we should also extend to others experiencing difficulty. The support the Muslim community received from Umar raḍyAllāhu 'anhu (may Allāh be pleased with him) showed us now, that we should help out those who are unable to fight for themselves and being ignorant makes us blind to many good things that Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) is sending our way. Lastly, the positive events of the Year of Sorrow helps us understand that extreme difficulty and a time period of an all time low always gets better because of Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He)’s mercy. You can apply these lessons as well by being there and comforting those in our family and community when something traumatic occurs on their life. We can also defend those communities, whether Muslim or not, all over the world if they cannot defend themselves. And having faith in Allah and knowing that we are not ever alone and when we need help, Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) provides help, the knowledge of Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He)’s mercy is a lesson in itself. As Muslims in a a violent and ignorant world, it is our duty to take lessons from Rasulullah’s life in order to make us better Muslims and help those out who are in need. This also reminds us that Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) genuinely cares for us and will bring us relief when we need it.

Source: muslimmatters/islam/

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