Most Noble and Beloved Emissary of God,
I am writing this to you because I did not have time to say everything I wanted to say when we met in Medina in Winter of 2003. Meeting you at your mosque was one of the happiest days of my life. I read so much about your life and biography. I have been there with you as you battled the Pagans of Mecca and the Hypocrites of Medina. I shared your anguish when the people of Taif first expelled you with stones. My heart ached for you when you were nearly killed at Uhud. I never tire from learning about the events of your life, and they never cease to teach me new lessons. When I stood before you, I could not hold back the tears. "Long have I waited to be with you," is what I told you. I pray it is not long before I come back and visit you again.
I do not know where to begin, O Messenger of God. Our ummah is in dire straits. I know you said that there will come a time when holding on to one's faith will be as holding on to hot coals, but never did I think it would get this bad. Every day, the faith we love so dearly--the faith that you gave your whole life to bring to me--is maligned and attacked. We Muslims have had to constantly defend against reckless accusations of Islam's detractors. We have had to constantly remind the people that Islam does not sanction violence. We have had to constantly defend you--and I will not repeat what has been said--against vicious and malicious attacks on your impeccable morality and integrity. We have to keep saying the same things over and over, as if the people are hearing it for the first time. And in many instances, the people, unfortunately, are hearing it for the first time.
I know you told us that the various nations will pick at the Muslims as people gathered around a dinner platter pick at the food. Yet that still does not make it hurt any less. It pains me to the deepest part of my soul to see my brothers and sisters suffering all across the world and be powerless to help them. The majority of the world's refugees, O Noble Emissary, are Muslims. Here in the United States, we Muslims are looked at with suspicion and sometimes outright hostility for no reason other than we are Muslim. The bad news about Islam--and unfortunately there is a lot of bad news to report--is stressed at the expense of the great deal of good news about Islam and Muslims. With each terrorist attack against American interests, we Muslims worry about what will happen to our lives and livelihood in the country we call home.
I can't begin to explain to you how scared I was on the morning of September 11. I froze in panic and horror as I watched smoke billow from the North Tower. I watched both towers collapse and could not move. I was hoping that everything my eyes beheld was a bad dream. Unfortunately, it was no dream. That morning was the darkest day I have ever lived. Even though I share this with you, O Noble Emissary of God, I am a bit embarrassed. The fear we American Muslims felt on September 11 was nothing compared to the danger and fear you and the Companions faced in Mecca. Although there were attacks against Muslims after September 11, it was not, thanks be to God, widespread. There was no plan for systematic torture of American Muslims, as was the case in Mecca. They did not boycott us and force us into camps, like the Meccans did with you and Bani Hashim. No, it was not nearly as bad for us as it was for you. Nevertheless, it was a fearful time, and I wanted to share my feelings with you.
We miss you so much. We need your gentle hands, your heartwarming smile, your profound wisdom, your stalwart strength, your kind demeanor. We need you now as much as the Companions needed you then. We miss you so much. The legacy of our faith threatens to be one of violence and hatred, not one of peace and justice as you had intended. We once were beacons of light and hope for the world. Those days, unfortunately, are gone. Almost every day, there is news of another attack on innocent people by terrorists who claim to act in your name. Almost every day, there is an attack on our faith by the most ignorant of people. By the day, it becomes more difficult to stay true to the Path you fought so hard to preserve and bring to us. We miss you so much, O Beloved Prophet of God.
Most Beloved Messenger! Thank you. I thank God for you. Thank you for all the suffering and pain you endured for me. Thank you for all the insults you took; thank you for all the blows you sustained; thank you for all the battles you waged; thank you for all the tireless hours you spent bringing this beautiful faith to me. I am so blessed to be a Muslim, and I thank God for that immense gift. I ask God to forgive me whenever I fall short of the demands of the faith I love and adore. And I also ask you to forgive me, too. For, whenever I sin against God, I betray the pain and struggle you endured so that I can be a Muslim. So, forgive me. I never mean it purposely; I love you way too much to belittle your struggle for the faith. I love you so much, O Messenger of God. I love you so much.
Hesham A. Hassaballa is a Chicago physician and writer. He is author of "Why I Love the Ten Commandments," published in the book Taking Back Islam: American Muslims Reclaim Their Faith (Rodale Press), winner of the prestigious Wilbur Award for 2003 Best Religion Book of the Year by the Religion Communicators Council.
Thanx for a wonderful piece. Brought tears to my eyes. However, I need to point out one thing. In your last para, you said:
"And I also ask you (our Beloved Prophet saw) to forgive me, too. For, whenever I sin against God, I betray the pain and struggle you endured so that I can be a Muslim."
Even our Beloved Prophet (saw) CANNOT forgive us without the Grace, Mercy and Permission of Allah swt. We have to be VERY CAREFUL here. If the Prophet (saw) could forgive INDEPENDENT of Allah swt, the first person he would forgive was his uncle Abu Talib.
In our zeal to love our Beloved Prophet (saw), lets be careful not to associate divine attributes to him.
it brought tears to my eyes.
May Allah bless you and may other muslims (including me) have this kind of faith in Allah and His Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
Jazak Allah al khair
This article brought tears to my eyes. Br.Hassaballa expressed my own feelings better than I could. In response to those who feel it is inappropriate to ask the Prophet for forgiveness, I say to them, every day we ask people whom we've hurt or offended to forgive and excuse us. I'm sure the brother meant it in this contex, and he did not intend shirk. Also, it is wonderfull for us to be able to visit the grave of the Prophet, to give him salaam and invoke Allah's blessings and mercy on him. But, for those of you who think we should be lucky we have the grave of the Prophet and his companions to visit while the jews and christians don't, I say to be carefull. This kind of veneration seems to be like their veneration of saints and borders on shirk. It is the reason the Prophet forbade visiting graves early in his mission before the revalation of surah 102. Instead as we learn from that surah, visiting graves should remind us of our own mortality, the transitory nature of material things and the fact that we have to stand before Allah on the day of judgement.
I was searching for free islamic resources to motivate and inspire 5-16 years old.
I came across your letter which bought tears to my eyes. I felt you had written what i was thinking and feeling. May Allah help us and guide us and guide other muslims and non-muslims to the straight path.
Islam and their book Quran is protected by God to remain as witness for humanity till the final judgement day, that's why followers of the Quran and Islam has been under persecution from the very begining and on going, however it has never been less in numbers of followers but surprisingly growing, as we hear fastest growing religion in the world. In the other hand as you said because of the hypocracy and power hungry Clergy or Rabbis or Curch Fathers or the Pope's the beautiful God given religion of Christianity has been changed anyhow. Today Christianit is totally different than as it was at the beginning. Today is is the religion of convenience, do anything you want at the end you are given heaven because somebody already been punished for your past future sins (eg.. Jesus). At the name of love you can do all the drinkin, fornication, adultery, idol worshiping (Jesus, Marry statue) etc.. that was grave sins early days of Christianity. So that's why they are not persecuted as the Muslims.
I would recommend you to read the Quran or those articles in Islamicity and discover the truth remember in the bible says "discover the truth and truth will set you free" God Bless and show you the right path for real salvation.
How blessed and fortunate we are that we were sent a Nabi such as Muhummad (SAW).
Why would a muslim think they were meeting with Prophet Muhammad (saw) when they visit Medina?
It's because this Ummah is mis-guided. We are doing to the beloved prophet of Islam what christians did to prophet Jesus.
Every Muslim should know:
Prophet Muhammad (saw) is dead.
If you worshipped him ... you are indeed lost.
But ALLAH is alive and well and HE is everywhere and everlasting.
So worship him and you'll never be lost.
afraid, just go on living your faith, thanking god
for it. I'm a Christian and my faith is being
destroyed by the Christian clergy, who seem to
have a death w
If only we learned about the Prophet Muhammad's(PBUH)life, instead of guessing and assuming we know.
It is time to come back to the roots of Islam and to learn the teachings of our beloved Prophet, not the teachings of hatred.
I appreciate your sentiments. Nonetheless, I disagree with your implication that I "twist" the meaning of your Quran. Never have I claimed that Islam permits/condones/promotes violence in an objectionable fashion. I did say the following, however:
"But this is erroneous, because the Quran states clearly that violence can be used AT TIMES." [emphasis added]
Furthermore, I later say the following:
"Admittedly, there are times when violence is appropriate."
And even you seemed to confirm this when you stated:
"Just the opposite, it abhors violence and AND ALLOWS IT only in self-defense. A claim to the contrary is no more than bad fiction." [emphasis added]
There is no contradiction between our statements. In any event, it's not my place to debate Islamic doctrine, since such things should be left to practitioners, which I am not. My intention in highlighting the author's statement about Islam and violence was to qualify it properly, as even you have done. And I think there's benefit in doing so because of the importance of making a moral distinction between different kinds of violence.
Does Islam make this distinction? You claim this is so and I will take you at your word. But do the majority of Muslims properly recognize this distinction? From my perspective (emphasis on "my"), the answer will come in time. Ultimately, non-Muslims must leave Islam for the Muslims to interpret.
there is a fine line between writing a letter to the Prophet (saw) and actually asking him for things we are supposed to ask Allah for.
It's a nice letter but some parts I do not agree with, such as where he asked for forgiveness from Prophet Muhammad (saw). That is not right. Only Allah can forgive.
the difference between you and I is no more than this line."
This is the best comment that I have read in a VERY long time! You are correct indeed and Jazakah Allahu khairan for reminding us of that
It was very well said but i wish it was written to God instead of Prophet Mohammad S.A.W due to the simple fact that we should always ask God for help not from his Prophets
Guatanamo Bay, Jamal Al-Harith, secret evidence.
Ali M. Tamimi, Falls Church Virginia.
Think about these, please.
The Prophet (saaw) should be addressed for the appeal for intercession on the day of Judgement only and in praise. The article is meant to be in good faith but the looseness in its vernacular is undisciplined
May Allah reward Br. Hesham for writing this.
This is one of he most beautiful thing that I have seen. These words can be form a Heart of a true Muslim. It really makes tears come out of my eyes. As I was myself blessed with two Umras in 95/2002, and wish that almighty ALLAH call me for a Hajj. It was truly the most happiest moment in my life, when I was standing so close to Rasullahas grave. I really felt his presence inside. I cried a lot and wished and prayed that Inshallah after I graduate from school this year. I would like to settle down in the city of Medina. As I can be close to our beloved Prophet. Life is too short to stay away from Iman and stay away from our Prophet. We Muslims are very lucky that we have our Prophets grave that we can go and cry, which other religions don't have. This can be the blessings from ALLAHA-TALHA. May ALLAHA help us all Muslims all over the world. Especially those suffering in Palestine, Chechnya, Iraq and Kashmir
"The fear we American Muslims felt on September 11 was nothing compared to the danger and fear you and the Companions faced in Mecca."
The prophet Muhammad, (S.A.W), and his companions, (R.A.), were never afraid of the Meccans. Especially the prophet. The only being he feared was Allah, (S.W.T). It's befitting of a Muslim to speak of the prophet this way. I suggest you refrain from speaking upon matters which you are not fully knowledgeable of. I say this in order to help you from committing this mistake again and not to attack you.
"in nahnu nazalna al-dhikr wa ina laho lehafedhoon." = We have brought down these words and We shall protect them till eternity." If you are familiar with Arabic language, notice the emphasis God put on the first two words.
This should give us faith to rely on Him in shaping the world according to the Good and Evil He has created.
This is my conclusion after many such heart-rendering speaches with myself, as the author does. Rely on Him and all will be fine but do not neglect your duties to be kind, just and honest towards all. Remember by the virtue of being in a non-muslim society the burden is on you to educate others what Islam truly represents. Some have not heard of and others thro their biased media. It may look like a uphill battle, but they are educated lot and many of them are reasonable and good people. Then it is your duty to show them otherwise, with patience and perseverance and Allah love those who are patient.
In short we are the ambassadors of Allah, each one of us is a small companion in our ways. Christ had 12 deciples and look how far his message has reached. Be a force for good no matter what. Endure brother, endure. It is good for the soul.
50 years ago you would have found it close to immpossible to see a mosque in a Western society. Today we have mosques from California to New Zealand. Such is the plan of Allah for through our misfortune of being refugees He has spread us thro the globe to practice Islam. We should never underestimate His plan. Truly we should be worthy of being made an instrument of God. Not through preaching but thro deeds. Reach out to your neighbour whatever he/she is Christian, Jew, athiest. etc. Extend a hand in friendship and help. It is a universal
This article made me cry. I am crying oh Allah, I am crying. I am crying with happiness, you made me a muslim.
I though it is me who cries for his prophet's suffering but there are many, may Allah increase our "Takwah" and make our heart soft for Allah, and it makes me strong to resolve our enemies.
I was lucky to visit Prophet's grave a month ago after hajj. It was wonderful to see how Allah has honoured him and his beloved companions in this life and InshaAllah life after.
Muslims be strong, remember the first word of Allah in the Quran "IQRA" read we have to read and know more our religion way of life. The more we would know our way of life, we would be strong muslims.
Salaam to his beloved prophet, and thank you Allah for your gift Islam to us and InshaAllah for the world soon. Ameen.
I agree with a previous comment about not asking Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, for forgiveness. Although I can understand from the context, where the writer 'was coming from', yet we should be careful not to give encouragement to those who make it a part of deen to address the Prophet, ask him for favours and ask him for forgiveness etc. According to the respected ulema, this is getting into shirk.
Another comment which I agree with is that we should not be feeling guilty about 911. What we should be feeling guilty about is our joining with others to find Muslims guilty of this atrocity, when we have no evidence for it. In fact there are thousands of non-muslims who are today defending us from this accusation. There is research, and many studies by experts from numerous disciplines who have concluded that this was a deliberate frame-up of Muslims, in order to launch a war of conquest of the natural resources in the Muslim world. I refer you to three web sites which will demonstrate this; www.911Review.org www911Research.wtc7.Net and www.Physics911.org.
I appeciate the message that you are trying to convey with this article. However, I must take issue one of your statements. You claim that Islam does not santion violence. But this is erroneous, because the Quran states clearly that violence can be used at times. For example, in verse 9:5 we see this:
"Once the Sacred Months are past, (and they refuse to make peace) YOU MAY KILL the idol worshipers when you encounter them, punish them, and resist every move they make. If they repent and observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) and give the obligatory charity (Zakat), you shall let them go. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful." [emphasis added]
In verse 4:92 the Quran also says the following:
"Why should you divide yourselves into two groups regarding hypocrites (among you)? GOD is the one who condemned them because of their own behavior. Do you want to guide those who are sent astray by GOD? Whomever GOD sends astray, you can never find a way to guide them. They wish that you disbelieve as they have disbelieved, then you become equal. Do not consider them friends, unless they mobilize along with you in the cause of GOD. If they turn against you, YOU SHALL FIGHT them, and YOU MAY KILL them them when you encounter them in war. You shall not accept them as friends, or allies." [emphasis added]
Finally, the Quran states in verse 9:29 the following:
"YOU SHALL FIGHT BACK against those who do not believe in GOD, nor in the Last Day, nor do they prohibit what GOD and His messenger have prohibited, nor do they abide by the religion of truth - among those who received the scripture - until they pay the due tax, willingly or unwillingly." [emphasis added]
Admittedly, there are times when violence is appropriate. But there's a moral distinction between a man who kills to end an *imminent* threat to innocent human life and a man who kills the children of his enemy in retaliation for a perceived wrong.
People of other 2 religions, Jews and Christian dont have such a place.
I would strongly recommend all muslims visit Mecca and Medinah at their earliest.
As I did and it totally changed my life for good.
An Excellent letter! It expresses what muslims feel. May Allah save us from the afflictions and protect the name of Islam from being used by these shayateen who want to create fitna in the land i.e. both terrorist individuals and states. Ameen