The Human Nature of the Prophet

The Messenger of Allah was a human being who was distinguished with Prophet-hood. Allah, the Exalted, commanded him to convey the message of Islam to humankind at large, so that they would be saved from the oppression of man-made systems and be delivered to the justice of God’s system. Allah, the Exalted, says: “Say, ‘I am only a man like you, to whom has been revealed that your god is one God. So whoever would hope for the meeting with his Lord - let him do righteous work and not associate in the worship of his Lord anyone.’” (18:110)

The Prophet has no share in divinity; he doesn’t know the unseen nor can he extend harm or benefit to anyone. He doesn’t have power to change the forces of nature. Allah, the Exalted, says: “Say, ‘I hold not for myself [the power of] benefit or harm, except what Allah has willed. And if I knew the unseen, I could have acquired much wealth, and no harm would have touched me. I am not except a warner and a bringer of good tidings to a people who believe.’” (7:188)

Even though the Prophet was favored with this mission of preaching the Word of God, he was never arrogant about it. He said: “Do not adulate me as the Christians adulated the son of Mary. Indeed, I am only the slave of God, so say: “The slave of God and His Messenger.” (Bukhari #3445)

The characteristics of the Prophet are purely human; he is not immortal. Allah, the Exalted, says: “Muhammad is not but a messenger. [Other] messengers have passed on before him. So if he was to die or be killed, would you turn back on your heels [to unbelief]? And he who turns back on his heels will never harm Allah at all; but Allah will reward the grateful.” (3:144)

The Prophet was susceptible to all human conditions; he fell ill and became weak. Abdullah bin Masood said: “I visited the Prophet while he was sick, and he said: ‘No Muslim is inflicted with a sickness, even if it be a prick from a pine except that Allah would forgive his sins on account of that discomfort. His sins would be removed from his record in a manner similar to the way leaves fall off a tree.’” (Bukhari #5641)

The Prophet experienced sadness as anyone would; in fact, he experienced all human emotions. When the Prophet’s son Ibrahim fell extremely ill and it was evident that he would not survive the sickness, the Prophet proceeded immediately to see his son. Tears flowed from his eyes and after he died, the Prophet said: “The eyes are full of tears, the heart is saddened, but we do not say anything except that which pleases Allah. Indeed, O Ibrahim, we are bereaved by your departure from us.” (Muslim #2315)

The Prophet also became oblivious on certain occasions. Abu Hurairah said, “The Messenger of Allah led us in a prayer and he performed only two units of the prayer and then ended it prematurely. People wondered whether the prayer was shortened and the Companions were hesitant to speak to the Prophet. It was then that a man known as Dhul-Yadain asked the Prophet: ‘O Messenger of Allah! Have you forgotten or has the prayer been shortened?’ The Prophet replied, ‘I have neither forgotten nor has the prayer been shortened!’ He then said: ‘You have forgotten O Messenger of Allah!’ The Prophet then inquired: ‘Is what Dhul Yadain has said true?’ They (the people) said, ‘Yes, it is true.’ The Prophet stood up and completed the remainder of the prayer that was forgotten by him.” (Bukhari #482)

The Prophet is not infallible when it comes to matters that pertain to the life of this world. The Prophet passed by an orchard and he saw a group of people pollinating a field of date palms. He said I don’t think this will benefit in the least. When this reached them, they refrained from doing it. The Prophet then said: “This is just a thought, for indeed I am a human being like you; thoughts can be correct and incorrect.” He then went on to say: “I didn’t say ‘Allah said’ for I will never forge a lie against Allah!” (Ahmed #2/366)

The Prophet’s Humane Behavior

The Prophet was very humane in his treatment of others. He said: “O Allah Muhammad is only a human being; he becomes angry as others become angry. So any believer I have hurt, or spoken harshly towards or have punished, make that for him a source of forgiveness and a means of becoming closer to You O Allah on the Day of Resurrection.” (Muslim #2601)

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The Prophet’s Social Side with His Family

The Prophet was very gentle towards his family. The Prophet instructed us saying: “Gentleness is not used to complete something except that it would be embellished.” The Prophet said to A’ishah: “O A’ishah, when Allah wants good for a household, its members would treat each other kindly.” (Targhib #2669) ...

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General Qualities of a Passionate Muslim

A passionate Muslim is also one who loves righteous deeds and tries his best to extend kindness to others without seeking any compensation. The Prophet said: “Be happy with what God has provided you and you shall be the richest of people. Love for others what you love for yourself and you shall be a true Muslim.” (Sahih al-Jami #100)