Promoting the Holy Prophet’s (S) lessons: The only way to restore Islamic pride
By: The Supreme Leader Ayatollah al-Uzma Sayyid Ali Khamenei
In order to find the path of guidance, we Muslims only need to become familiar with the personality of the Holy Prophet (S). Of course, we believe that the entire humanity should benefit from the Holy Prophet (S) and they do, but we members of the Islamic Ummah should be the first to do so. Allah the Exalted prepared him for the greatest mission in the history of mankind. Imam Sadiq (a.s.) said, “Almighty God educated His Messenger well and when he had educated him to perfection, He said: surely you have a great character. Then He entrusted him with the affairs of Islam and the Ummah so that he could educate His servants and manage their affairs.” 1
Allah the Exalted educated him and helped him improve. He provided him with all the means that he required for this great and historic achievement and then He put this heavy responsibility and this heavy and historic mission on his shoulders. Therefore, maybe we can say that today which is the 17th of Rabi al-Awwal and the birthday anniversary of the Holy Prophet (S) is the greatest Eid in the history of mankind, a day on which Allah the Exalted bestowed this great gift on humanity and on the history of mankind. And the Holy Prophet (S) rose up relying on the tools he had been equipped with.
Today if we Muslims focus on the personality of the Holy Prophet (S) and if we are determined to learn lessons, this would be enough for our worldly and spiritual life. In order to restore our dignity, it is enough to consider his character and learn lessons from him.
The Holy Prophet (S) was the embodiment of knowledge. He was the embodiment of trustworthiness. He was the embodiment of ethics. He was the embodiment of justice. What else does mankind need? These are what mankind needs. These are the needs that have not changed since the beginning. So many changes have taken place in the life of human beings since the creation of mankind, which have transformed the conditions of human life, but the main needs of humanity have remained unchanged.
Since the beginning up until today, mankind has been after security and peace. Human beings have been after justice. They have been after good behavior. They have been after forming a firm bond with the Source of Creation. These are the main needs of mankind, which originate from human nature. The Holy Prophet (S) was the embodiment of all these needs.
Today the Islamic Ummah needs all these characteristics. Today the Islamic Ummah needs scientific progress. It needs to firmly believe in God. We need healthy relationships and good behavior among ourselves. We should treat each other in a brotherly way. We should treat each other with mercy and patience. We need to be lenient towards each other. The Holy Prophet of Islam (S) is the embodiment of all these characteristics: knowledge, patience, leniency, mercy, compassion towards weak people and fair behavior towards everybody in society.
We should learn lessons from the Holy Prophet (S). We need these things. Today we need to firmly believe in Allah the Exalted and His promises. Allah the Exalted has promised that if we struggle in His way and make efforts, He will help us achieve our goals. And you will achieve your goals as a result of resistance. We should not feel weak and helpless in the face of worldly passions.
We should not feel weak in the face of material possessions, social status and different kinds of temptations. We should resist. These are the things that will help humanity achieve perfection. These are the things that will bring about dignity for nations and genuine happiness for society. We need these things. Our Prophet (S) was the embodiment of all these things.
We know how the Holy Prophet (S) lived during his childhood and youth and before his Be’that. He was so trustworthy that all members of Quraysh and all the Arabs who knew him would refer to him as “Muhammad the Trustworthy”. He used to treat people so fairly that when the Arab tribes were fighting over who was more qualified to return Hajar al-Aswad to its original place in Ka’aba, they decided that he should be the arbiter. This was while he was a young man. This shows that he used to treat people fairly and everybody knew this. Everybody considered him honest and trustworthy.
This was how he lived during his youth. And when God appointed him as prophet, he engaged in selfless struggle and resistance like that. Everybody was against him at that time. All that pressure during the first thirteen years of his prophethood in Mecca: what difficult years! The Holy Prophet (S) stood firm and with his resistance, he trained Muslims to stand firm and not yield to any kind of pressure. These things are lessons for us. Later on, he established a civil society and he did not rule more than ten years, but he founded a society that remained the peak of human achievements in science, civilization, spiritual progress, ethical progress and wealth.
After the Holy Prophet (S), Muslims did not work as hard as they should have and they harmed the society he had built. We Muslims kept ourselves backward and now we must follow the Holy Prophet (S) and make up for the backwardness we imposed on ourselves. Today the Islamic Ummah needs unity. The Islamic Ummah needs compassion.
The uprisings that have taken place in the world of Islam and in the Arab world, the awakening of the people, the presence of the people on the scene, the repeated retreats by America and the arrogant powers, the increasing weakness of the Zionist regime these are opportunities for Muslims and the Islamic Ummah. We should wake up. We should learn lessons. There is no doubt that this movement will continue thanks to the efforts of the Islamic Ummah, luminaries, intellectuals and scientific, political and religious figures. And by Allah’s favor, the world of Islam will restore its glory. 2
I would like to congratulate the people of Iran who founded their movement on Mab’ath and made efforts to reach the great goals of the Holy Prophet's (S) Be’that. They took the trouble and thankfully they were given what Allah the Exalted has promised. Allah the Exalted has promised victory, progress and happiness for nations that follow this path and His promises are unbreakable. I also congratulate the Islamic Ummah on this great Eid. After decades of experimenting with different schools of thought, today the Islamic Ummah has developed a tendency towards Prophet Muhammad's (S) religion. After Muslim intellectuals, opinion-makers and pioneers experienced different western and eastern schools of thought, claims and -isms for many years and realized their futility and failure, today the Islamic Ummah has turned to the essence and goals of Be’that.
Today is an auspicious day for them and we hope all human beings benefit from the blessings of Be’that. What I am trying to say is that there are different aspects to Be’that. The beams of light that have emanated from Be’that are more than a few. But today humanity needs two things that have their roots in Be’that. One is promotion of thinking and the other is moral purification. If these two things are ensured, the old wishes of humanity will be fulfilled, justice will be ensured, happiness will be ensured, and material welfare will be ensured.
The main problem lies in these two areas. The Holy Prophet (S) said, "I was appointed as Prophet to perfect moral virtues." 3Also, the Holy Quran says, "He it is Who raised among the inhabitants of Mecca a Messenger from among themselves, who recites to them His communications and purifies them."
After mentioning purification in the Ayah, the Holy Quran continues, "... and teaches them the Book and the Wisdom." 4
This is a noble goal: purifying human beings, cleansing hearts, improving commitment of humanity to ethics and saving human beings from moral problems, ethical weaknesses and human passions. This is a goal.
The issue of thinking is also an essential issue and it is not particular to the Prophet of Islam (S). All prophets were sent to revive the power of thinking among human beings. The Commander of the Faithful (a.s.) says in a sermon in Nahjul Balaghah, "Then Allah sent His Messengers and series of His prophets towards them to get them to fulfill the pledges of His creation, to recall to them His bounties, to exhort them by preaching, to unveil before them the hidden treasure of wisdom." 5
Prophets were sent to uncover the treasure of wisdom which is hidden in human beings. Human beings have a great capacity for thinking. When we do not think, when we do not study, when we do not reflect on the divine signs, when we do not reflect on our history, on the different events that have happened to humanity, on the past afflictions and on the causes of great victories that nations have achieved, we deprive ourselves of the spiritual treasure that Allah the Exalted has bestowed on us. "Then Allah sent His Messengers and series of His prophets towards them to get them to fulfill the pledges of His creation, to recall to them His bounties, to exhort them by preaching, to unveil before them the hidden treasure of wisdom." Today humanity needs these two things. 6
• 1. Kafi, Vol. 1, P. 266
• 2. Supreme Leader’s speech delivered on February 10, 2012 on the occasion of the Holy Prophet’s (S) birthday anniversary
• 3. Bihar al-Anwar, Vol. 68, P. 382
• 4. Sura al-Jumua, Ayah 2
• 5. Nahjul Balaghah, Sermon 1
• 6. Supreme Leader’s speech delivered on June 18, 2012 in a meeting with government officials of the Islamic Republic and ambassadors of Islamic countries.