The status of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

Did Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) ruled over mankind, the jinn, animals, and birds, as well as the sun, the moon, the stars and also over the dead? (Br. Adil Salahi answers this question….)
 

The thought that immediately occurred to me when I read this question was: What is left for the Almighty Allah? If we make such a statement, we are in effect saying that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has a status placing him above the Almighty.

The first thing to be said here is that although Muslims are required to love the Prophet (peace be upon him) better and more than they love anyone or anything else, including their parents, children and indeed themselves, they must be careful lest they say or do something that is unacceptable to Almighty Allah.

The Prophet’s status comes from the fact that Allah chose him to deliver His final message to humanity and show them how to implement it in practice.

Throughout his life, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) remained a servant of Almighty Allah, exemplary in his obedience of whatever Allah ordered. When anyone says that the Prophet ruled over all those creatures, what does he actually mean? If he means that the Prophet determined what happened to them in this life or in the life to come, then his statement is false.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) did not determine events of his own life. In the Battle of Uhud, he received several injuries. How come he did not prevent such injuries? The battle ended in a painful defeat for his army. Why did he not determine its outcome?

If someone says that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) was given a message that applied to all these creatures, including the sun, moon and stars, then his statement is wrong again. The message of Islam calls on people to submit themselves to Allah on the basis of choice and free will. The only creatures mentioned in the question that have free will are humans and the jinn.

The Prophet’s message is addressed to both, and every human being and jinn are required to believe in Islam, submitting themselves willingly to Allah and abiding by His teachings.

The other types of creatures mentioned, including animals, birds, and celestial bodies, have not been given free will. They cannot chose between alternatives. They submit to the Almighty in the sense that His will applies to them and they cannot contravene the laws of nature He has set in operation. Hence, they do not have to account on the Day of Judgment for the role they play in life.

As for the dead, these are people whose ability to act and do anything is over. Hence, no standard of behavior applies to them.

Why do people give the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) such exaggerated status? They often speak of their love of the Prophet. Yet love, in its true sense, means following what the Prophet has taught, either by advice or by action.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) made it clear that people must not give him an exaggerated status. These people deliberately contradict his express wishes. Does that indicate love?

If you dearly love your mother and she tells you that she does not like the smell of the perfume you have just bought, would you wear that perfume day after day? Would you not try to exchange it for a different perfume that she likes?

If the Prophet (peace be upon him) tells you not to exaggerate his status, why do you go on insisting on giving him a status that is beyond the reach of anyone other than Allah?

Consider the Quranic verse in which Allah gives this instruction to the Prophet (peace be upon him):

*{Say: If you love Allah, follow me; Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. Allah is Much-Forgiving, Merciful.}* (Aal Imran 3: 31)

It sums up the role and position of the Prophet (peace be upon him): He is to be obeyed and followed by all people who wish to be loved by Allah and have their sins forgiven. Our attitude toward the Prophet (peace be upon him) should be one of following, not merely singing his praises.

Unfortunately, some people think that by unrestrictedly singing the Prophet’s praises, they demonstrate their love and that is all that they need to do. They are grossly mistaken. If a person spends hours on end extolling the Prophet’s praises, then he disobeys his teachings in practice, his action belies his words. All that he professes of loving the Prophet (peace be upon him) becomes null and void.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) made it clear that he was an ordinary human being, who was not privy to what Allah might determine concerning anyone or anything. He could not forbid anything or make it lawful at his own behest.

When he expressed dislike of the smell of garlic and onion, people said that he would go on to forbid eating them. He said to them: “Look, you people! I am only human. I have no authority to forbid anything. It is only Almighty Allah who has such authority. I have simply expressed some personal dislike.”

We must certainly follow the Prophet’s example and abide by his guidance. This is the way to earn Allah’s pleasure. This, however, does not mean giving him a status other than what Allah has given him.

Indeed Allah has bestowed on him the greatest honor He would grant to anyone of His servants, making him the means of delivering His message to mankind.

This is why Prophet Muhammad’s name is joined to Allah’s own name in the declaration that brings a person into the fold of Islam: “I bear witness that there is no deity other than Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is Allah’s messenger.”

There can be no higher status than that.

(This article was originally published in Arab News, re-published in onislam.net. I made some modifications from here )

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About MuQeet

This is MuQeet. Author. Educator. Soft Skill Trainer. Freelancer. Editor. YasSarNalQuR'aN is my primary blog. There are two other amazing blogs: www.Muqith.wordpress.com and www.IslamCalling.wordpress.com Subscribe if you wish to stay connected, InshaaAllah. Thank you.
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