The real grandeur of persons lies in both their familiarity with great things and the simplicity at the same time. If we have consistently shed the light on the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad, Peace be upon him, we would find that he combined between the two things together; he is the prophet, the Messenger of Allah, the governor of the State, the leader of change in the Arabian Peninsula and the world, and the founder of the Islamic civilization – that civilization from which the West has greatly benefited in the Renaissance and which was the cause of getting out of the Middle Ages. At the same time, Prophet Muhammad’s personality was at a very high level of simplicity, compassion, and love for others. Being an orphan was a major cause in forming this simple and merciful character. In this article we will explain some examples of Prophet Muhammad’s simplicity and humanity.
Prophet Muhammad and the treatment of children:
One of the situations which shows the simplicity of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, was his attitude towards a child called Abu ‘Umayr who had a small bird whose name was al-nughayr. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, used to ask him: «O Abu ‘Umayr, what happened to al-nughayr?» (Sahih al-Bukhari:6203) as a kind of playfulness and kindness.
Even at times of worship, the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, did not forget to be merciful with children; he used to pray whilst carrying his granddaughter, Umaamah. He also used to play with his grandsons, Hasan and Husayn; carry them in prayers, and they used to ride on his back when he was prostrating, and he did not raise his head until the child had come down as narrated by Al-Nasaa’i from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Shaddaad that his father said: “The Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessings be upon him, came out to us for one of the evening prayers (Maghrib or ‘Isha’), carrying Hasan or Husayn. The Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessings be upon him, came forward, put the child down and said Takbeer (“Allaahu akbar”) to start the prayer. Then he prostrated during the prayer and his prostration lasted for a long time. My father said: I raised my head and saw the child on the back of the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessings be upon him, so I went back to my prostration. When the Messenger of Allaah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, finished praying, the people said to him: ‘O Messenger of Allaah, during your prayer you prostrated and it took a long time, until we thought that something had happened, or that you were receiving Revelation.’ He said, «Nothing happened, but my son was riding on my back and I did not want to hurry him up until he had had enough.»” (Saheeh al-Nasaa’i, 1093).
Prophet Muhammad’s Humility:
One day, a man came to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him, with signs of fear and dread on his face. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said: «Take it easy. I am not a king; I am just a man whose mother ate dried meat.» (Sahih Al-jami’:7052).
Prophet Muhammad and his wife:
He was tender with his wife ‘Aa’ishah, may Allah be pleased with her. He used to shorten her name and call her (‘Aa’ish) as a kind of caressing. As she was younger than him, ‘Aa’ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, needed to have fun, so the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, raced with her; sometimes she outstripped him, and other times he outstripped her, and says: «This is for that outstripping» (Sunan Abi Dawud:2578).
During her menstrual period, Prophet Muhammad used to put his mouth on the place where she had drunk from, and he would drink from what was leftover by her, while she was menstruating (Sunan an-Nasa’i:281).
This is the character of Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him; a great, simple, and merciful character which changed the face of the world.