Why was Muhammad (pbuh) given the Prophethood? Was it primarily due to his great moral characters and honesty?
What did the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) used to pray in Mt. Hira before the revelation? Did he pray to Allah? Did he know of Allah before the revelation? How did he come to know Allah. Did he pray five times a day in Mt Hira? What kind of meditation did he do? Please clarify based on the authentic Islamic of sources as to how he used to spend his time in Mt. Hira and based on what teachings.
Answers to your questions follow:
- Clearly, moral character and honesty of a person would also be major factors in selecting him for the responsibility of delivering God’s message to his people, yet they may not be the only ones. The Qur’an has clearly mentioned that the person selected for the purpose is the best, according to God’s perfect knowledge and unchallengeable criteria. The Qur’an, however, has answered this question in a more generalized form, in the following verse:
وإذا جاءتهم آية قالوا لن نؤمن حتى نؤتى مثل ما أوتي رسل الله الله أعلم حيث يجعل رسالته (الأنعام 6:124)
And when a sign comes to them, they say: ‘We shall not believe in it unless we too are given that which the Prophets of God are given’. [Tell them that] God fully knows where to put [the responsibility of] His Prophethood.
From a broad perspective, we can only say that God selects the person, who, according to His knowledge and wisdom, is best suited to fulfill all aspects of the responsibility entailed in being a prophet of God.
- The details of the Prophet’s routines at Mt. Hira are not fully known. It is, however, clear that the Prophet would meditate, deliberating and pondering over the creations of the heavens and the earth, keeping himself away from the despicable idolatrous beliefs and practices of his people.
Did he pray to Allah? Did he know of Allah before the revelation? How did he come to know Allah. Did he pray five times a day in Mt Hira? What kind of meditation did he do? Please clarify based on the authentic Islamic of sources as to how he used to spend his time in Mt. Hira and based on what teachings.
Before the initiation of revelation, the Prophet (pbuh) – like many other Arabs – believed in one God, who was clear of all partners. Though, as is clear from the Qur’an, the Prophet (pbuh), before the initiation of revelation, was not clear about the fine details of the belief in the one God or about the complete concept and attributes of the Almighty, yet he prayed only to the Almighty – known as ‘Allah’ by the Arabs. Although there is some evidence that Sala’h was known to the pre-Islamic Arabs, yet because details of the Prophet’s routine at Mt. Hira are not available, we are not in a position to say with any degree of certainty whether or not the Prophet (pbuh) performed Sala’h or the number of times that he offered prayers. It, however, seems that the monotheist creed among the Arabs were followers of the age-old Abrahamic tradition that had been transmitted to them over generations from the time of Abraham (pbuh) and Ishmael (pbuh).
I hope this helps.
October 29, 2003