Emulating Prophet Muhammad’s ﷺ Best Traits

by Ustadzah Eka Budhi Setiani

Emulating Prophet Muhammad’s ﷺ Best Traits

During the time of Jahiliyyah, people’s livelihood was full of tyranny, injustice and low morality. At that time, the practice of usury, liquor, gambling, drunkenness, debauchery and hedonism were common and normal in the life of the Arab nations. They are proud of their lineage and nobility. They are only attracted to worldly pleasures. They also believed that death was the end of life, there is no resurrection and no day of reckoning.

In that time of misguidance, young Muhammad ﷺ was born. From childhood to adulthood, he always wondered about the actions of his people. Even though he lived among them, Allah protected him from every act of Jahiliyyah and spiritually protected him from idol worship. Prophet Muhammad ﷺ also promoted and invited people to be a better person by giving observable examples. Here are some of the best qualities of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ that we can incorporate in our daily lives.

Trusted / Al-Amin / الأمين

Prophet Muhammad ﷺ is loved and exemplary by many people because since childhood, he has demonstrated honesty, compassion, gentleness and other noble characters. Since the very beginning, he has been known to have honesty and trustworthiness (al-Amin); the prophetic message was welcomed by the Quraysh, although many also disbelieved in it. Although Prophet Muhammad ﷺ had many enemies in Mecca, he was still famous for his reputation as al-Amin, an honest and trustworthy person.

From a young age, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ was different from his people in character, habits and worship. He loved them very much and they felt the same. He could feel the strength of their friendship and kinship. He was very loving and gentle with them.

Young Muhammad ﷺ fought alongside his uncles in the Battle of Fujjar. He also witnessed the Al-Fudul Confederacy when he was twenty years old. He also participated with his people in renewing the building of the Kaaba. He helped his uncle Abbas to move the stones. When his people wanted to put the Black Stone in its place, they argued over who deserved the glory, and the dispute almost ended in a battle. 

Abu Umayah bin Mughirah al-Mahzumi, a sage, was unmoved to see this situation. With all his wisdom, he exclaimed “O my people, enough of this dispute. Let’s appoint an intermediary. Let the one who put this stone be the first person to enter the mosque today.” 

They accepted this suggestion. A few moments later, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ appeared calmly and stepped into the Masjid al-Haram. Seeing that, the people welcomed him with joy. They felt that Prophet Muhammad ﷺ was very deserving of this noble work. Honesty, politeness and nobility of morality make them ashamed to disapprove of it.

They said, “He is al-Amin, we are happy with his decision“.

Merciful

There are five noble qualities of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ that are described in Surah At-Taubah: 

لَقَدْ جَآءَكُمْ رَسُولٌ مِّنْ أَنفُسِكُمْ عَزِيزٌ عَلَيْهِ مَا عَنِتُّمْ حَرِيصٌ عَلَيْكُمْ بالمؤمنين رَءُوفٌ رَّحِيمٌ

“Now hath come unto you a Messenger from amongst yourselves: it grieves him that ye should perish: ardently anxious is he over you: to the Believers is he most kind and merciful.”

[At-Taubah 9:128]

The five qualities are min anfusikum (from your own people), azizun (burden borne by him), harishun (desire for faith), and the forth and fifth are raufun rahimun (forgiving and merciful).

One example of the merciful quality of the Prophet ﷺ is also narrated in Islamic history. At that time the Prophet ﷺ was passing through the area of Taif and the people of Taif threw stones at him. Seeing this incident, an angel came to the Messenger of Allah and was saddened by what had happened to the Prophet ﷺ. The angel offered a recompense for the people of Taif and wanted to throw a mountain at them. However, the Prophet ﷺ refused the angel’s offer. He did not want to repay the evil that was inflicted on him. Instead of revenge, he even prayed for them. 

“I actually wanted the opposite. I hope that someday, out of them, will be born people who always walk in virtue and no one would be shirk,” replied the Prophet ﷺ.

When this prayer was heard, Jibril could not understand and could not contain its admiration for the Prophet ﷺ. The admiration jumped from Jibril’s mouth into a compliment, “It’s very right that people call you a very merciful person.”

Likewise during the Conquest of Mecca. This event was very humane even though it violated the Arab war traditions with bloodshed, looting and more. But the compassion of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ was greater in this case so that there was no revenge. This bloodless revolution gave birth to a monumental wholeness and peace and the victory of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. A new era in Mecca was here. The era in where Islam exists to meet the physical and spiritual needs of Muslims. The era of compassion and life would follow the noble values of Islamic teachings.

Caring for the Poor and Orphans

In one hadith, Rasulullah ﷺ said,

   اللهم أحيني مسكينا وأمتني مسكينا واحشرني في زمرة المساكين يوم القيامة  

“O Allah, make me live and die as a poor person and gather me with the poor.” 

[Tirmidhi]

Therefore, the Messenger of Allah ﷺ paid great attention to the poor and loved them with all his heart. 

This is as narrated in the book Al-Barzanji, by Sheikh Ja’far bin Husin bin Abdul Karim bin Muhammad Al-Barzanji, page 123, as follows:

   ويحب الفقراء والمساكين ويجلس معهم ويعود مرضاهم ويشيع جنائزهم ولا يحقر فقيرا    

“He loved the poor, sat with them, visited those who were sick, pray their bodies, and never insulted the poor.”

The Messenger of Allah ﷺ was also very fond of orphans, even he conveyed in a hadith about the honor of the guardians of orphans.

أنا وكافل اليتيم كهاتين 

“The guardian of the orphans and I are like these two fingers (he pointed to the middle finger and index finger).”

From this hadith, we can understand that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ loved and cared for orphans and even glorified the caretakers of orphans by showing his closeness to the caretakers of orphans.

Considerate of the Opinions of Others in Making Decisions

The Prophet ﷺ always incorporated the leadership theory he conveyed to his daily actions. One of the leadership concepts that he proclaimed was the concept of personal awareness as a leader. So far, many people are not aware that he is a leader who has duties and responsibilities.

The Prophet ﷺ also always decided all the matters he faced by way of deliberation and consensus. He did this because he obeyed Allah’s own command as stated in Surah Ali ‘Imran:

 فَبِمَا رَحْمَةٍ مِنَ اللَّهِ لِنْتَ لَهُمْ، وَلَوْ كُنْتَ فَظًّا غَلِيظَ الْقَلْبِ لَانْفَضُّوا مِنْ حَوْلِكَ، فَاعْفُ عَنْهُمْ وَاسْتَغْفِرْ لَهُمْ وَشَاوِرْهُمْ فِي الْأَمْرِ، فَإِذَا عَزَمْتَ فَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ، إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُتَوَكِّلِينَ 

“It is part of the Mercy of Allah that thou dost deal gently with them.  Wert thou severe or harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about thee: so pass over (Their faults), and ask for (Allah’s) forgiveness for them; and consult them in affairs (of moment). Then, when thou hast Taken a decision put thy trust in Allah. For Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him).” 

[Ali ‘Imran 3:159]

He also does not acknowledge the caste system between subordinates and superiors in his leadership. Everyone is positioned equally and has the same opportunity to provide suggestions and opinions on any issue, as long as it is in accordance with the applicable rules and guidelines. One more important thing is that the Prophet ﷺ called his subordinates as companions, not as subordinates who could be treated as they pleased.

Treat People Equally

Rasulullah ﷺ never discriminated against status; all were considered and treated the same. We can see how the Prophet ﷺ treated his best companion, Bilal bin Abi Rabah who was originally a slave and also Anas bin Malik who was a servant. Rasulullah ﷺ was even very close to them.

Not only fellow Muslims, even non-Muslims, Rasulullah ﷺ is very appreciative and respectful. As narrated that the Prophet ﷺ often feed the blind poor people from among the Jews who were on the outskirts of the market. When people shunned him, the Messenger of Allah ﷺ was not disgusted to feed him with his own hands with great tenderness.

God created us differently so that we can understand each other. The only difference acknowledged by Allah is piety.

ﻳَﺎ ﺃَﻳُّﻬَﺎ ﺍﻟﻨَّﺎﺱُ ﺇِﻧَّﺎ ﺧَﻠَﻘْﻨَﺎﻛُﻢْ ﻣِﻦْ ﺫَﻛَﺮٍ ﻭَﺃُﻧْﺜَﻰ ﻭَﺟَﻌَﻠْﻨَﺎﻛُﻢْ ﺷُﻌُﻮﺑًﺎ ﻭَﻗَﺒَﺎﺋِﻞَ ﻟِﺘَﻌَﺎﺭَﻓُﻮﺍ ﺇِﻥَّ ﺃَﻛْﺮَﻣَﻜُﻢْ ﻋِﻨْﺪَ ﺍﻟﻠَّﻪِ ﺃَﺗْﻘَﺎﻛُﻢْ

“O mankind, We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into races and tribes, so that you may identify one another. Surely the noblest of you, in Allah’s sight, is the one who is most pious of you. Surely Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware”. 

[Al-Hujurat 49:13]

Ustadzah Eka Budhi Setiani, Lc is one of the sharia advisors at Muslim Pro. A servant of Allah who studies the science of Usuluddin at Al-Azhar University – Cairo, Egypt. Currently she is devoting her knowledge by teaching at an Islamic school managed by the Education Department in a province. In addition, together with her husband, she now manages her Islamic boarding school in a small town in Banten Province called Ponpes Balonk Faidhul Barokaat.