5 Steps Of The Greatness Of Rasulullah (SAW)
A question for someone who is striving to achieve something in this life to truly bring benefit to themselves in the next life, should ask themselves. Am I seeking the pleasure of Allah? Where am I going in my life? Allah asked us ‘f’ayna tathabūn?’ So where are we headed? We should be headed in a straight line. The straight line is seeking the pleasure of Allah. That straight line is straight forward, because we can do anything in life within certain limits but we should do it for the sake of Allah and do it with excellence, which is the way of Rasulullah (SAW). These are the two aspects of greatness: 1st is to make a commitment in life to seek the pleasure of Allah, 2nd to follow the example of Rasulullah (SAW).
Ibn Rajab, one of the great scholars of Islam asked the question: “What was the character of Rasulullah (SAW), what is it that made him great?” Ibn Rajab mentioned five things that made Rasulullah (SAW) a great man:
1) Fulfilling the rights of others: There are people whom you owe rights to fulfill their rights. So for example, your parents, your siblings, your spouse, your relatives, your friends have rights over you, fulfill their rights.
2) Avoid harming people: This is the second part of the excellence of Prophetic character. Rasulullah (SAW) he did not even harm his enemies. And this is the second aspect of good character. This is common sense.
3) The way you act with people: Rasulullah (SAW) was positive and cheerful in his dealings with people. Rasulullah (SAW) would be walking down the streets of Medina and little children would grab him by the hand, saying that they wanted to show him something. They would be play, skip and jump around him, telling him they wanted to show him something. Rasulullah (SAW) would not let go of their hand until they let go of his. Can we imagine Rasulullah (SAW) having nothing to do? No. He would be extremely busy, but he’d be walking down the street and if anyone greeted him, as is mentioned in the books that describe Rasulullah (SAW): “If he turned to someone, he turned completely.” He wouldn’t just say ‘wa ‘alaykum Al-salām’ hurriedly. If someone greeted him he would turn completely to that person and give them his complete attention. Many of the Sahabah thought they were the most beloved to Rasulullah (SAW) Why? Rasulullah (SAW) dealt with everyone in a positive way.
4) Respond to the good that others do, with good, or that which is better: We don’t fully appreciate what others do for us. How many times do we really thank our parents, our siblings, our spouse or any one of our friends, and this is an important Sunnah. Rasulullah (SAW) warned that anyone who doesn’t thank people hasn’t thanked Allah. This is another aspect of good character.
5) Respond to the wrong of others with nothing but the good: This is the greatest thing we will find in Rasulullah (SAW). We will find many people who did many great things in life, but we will find no one who unfailingly responded to the bad of others with nothing but the good, like Rasulullah (SAW). Look at every stage of his life. People threw garbage at him, people threw their slippers at him, people hurt him, harmed him, did all kinds of things, and how did the Prophet respond? We saw nothing but beautiful action in response. Rasulullah (SAW) was firm; he didn’t act like a door mat. He was a firm man, he knew exactly what he had to achieve in life and he took steps towards that and when he was opposed he stood firm both in Mecca and Medina. He stood firm in the face of opposition, but with excellence. And even when people came and were unreasonable with him, we see nothing but beautiful conduct. When Rasulullah (SAW) entered Mecca again after the conquest of Mecca, all of Quraish were under the power of Rasulullah (SAW); he could do with them as he wished. What was prevalent at that time when you conquered a city: blood bath. People were scurrying into each other’s houses, going here and there, what did Rasulullah (SAW) say to them? Rasulullah (SAW) said to them something the Prophet Yusuf (AS) had said to his brethren. (Because the brothers of the Prophet Yusuf (AS) tried to get rid of him and move him to a well, but when they reunited the Prophet Yusuf (AS) forgave them and said this to his brothers.) Rasulullah (SAW) said: “I say to you as the Prophet Yusuf said to his brothers, there is no blame on you today, we are brothers. May Allah forgive us and you.”
“O Allah forgive us for our weaknesses, make our character that which is pleasing to You, a character of beauty and greatness like Your Beloved Messenger (SAW). Aameen Thuma Aameen”