Seeking out the Seerah of the Prophet
By Imam Fuad
Allah ﷻ looked at the world and the condition that it was in the years leading up to the year 569-571 and deemed that it was time for a change for the trajectory that it was upon. This change came in the form of a new crescent moon that would luminate the entire world for the years to come. This moon that rose high above the arabian desert and then eventually the entire world was none other than the blessed Ahmed ﷺ as the poet states:
إن البرية قبل مبـعث أحمد *** نظر الإله لها فبدل حـالها
بل كرَّم الإنسان حيث اختار من *** خير البرية نجمها وهلالها
Before the advent of Ahmad,
God looked upon the wilderness, He changed its state.
But rather He honored humanity by selecting from the best of creation,
its star and crescent.
How beautiful are the words of this poet? How could these words not be beautiful when they are describing the most perfect of Allah’s ﷻ creations? The one that is most praised in the earth and the heavens. How could the words not be beautiful when it is talking about the brightest star that humanity has seen? The one by which if we follow his way we are going to be granted eternal bliss, the one in whose character and manners was perfection. How could the words not be beautiful when they are describing the one who guided us to the truth?
This is our messenger ﷺ. We could continue to write about the perfection of our messenger ﷺ but the more that we write and talk about him the more that it elevates us in our honor. May Allah have mercy on Al-Qadi ‘‘Iyad who was able to encompass this meaning in a beautiful bayt when he stated:
مـما زادني شـرفا وتيها *** وكدت بأخمصي أطأ الثريا
دخولي تحت قولك يا عبادي *** وأن صيرت أحمد لي نبيا
And what increased my honor and made me wander,
I almost touched the Pleiades(open star clusters) with my toes,
is my entry under Your [Allah ﷻ] Saying, ‘O My servants,’
and that Ahmed became for me a Prophet.”
This is our messenger, through him you and I earned our honor. It is as if this honor elevated us above even the stars that we gaze up at and are filled with awe and joy. The first honor came in the fact that we are from amongst those whom Allah ﷻ has referred to as “O My servants”, and the second honor being that the greatest messenger sent to all of mankind is our messenger ﷺ.
The month of Rabi ul Awwal is the month in which he was born. He ﷺ was born on a blessed Month as he ﷺ has informed us in authentic hadith. The only thing that we don’t know for certain is the date of his birth. The scholars have differed on what date and it ranges from it being either the second, sixth, eighth, ninth, tenth, twelveth or seventeenth of Rabi ul Awwal. It is not important for us to know the exact date that our messenger ﷺ was born on since we don’t have any particular worship that we need to do on that day.
One thing that we should focus on more in our lives whether it is in the blessed month of Rabi ul Awwal or in the other months is to increase our love for our messenger ﷺ. The best way a person is able to do is by learning more and more about the messenger ﷺ. The companion as it is reported to us used to teach their children about the life of the messenger. If we want to increase our love for our messenger ﷺ we will also have to learn and teach others about the life and times of our messenger ﷺ.
How can we actually learn about the life of our messenger ﷺ? Our scholars have dedicated so much time into serving the seerah of the messenger in all languages that it would almost be impossible for you to not find a seerah book that you like. If it is not books then you have many series that are recorded on the life of the messenger ﷺ available on the internet in many languages. We have contemporary works of seerah as well as classical works of seerah that are available at our fingertips in this golden age of information.
Here are a few book recommendations for different age groups. Again just because these are suggestions for different age ranges does not mean that if you are older or younger that you will not benefit from the works mentioned. “When The Moon Split” for those of us that have children in fourth and fifth grade levels. For our middle schoolers I recommend the book titled “The Seerah of the Final Prophet” by Sharif H. Banna. Also the famous seerah work (by the author of When the Moon Split) meant for adults is titled “The Sealed Nectar”. You can find these books at a discounted price at the MCA bookstore in Santa Clara!
If you are going to go the book route make sure that you schedule a time where your entire family can get together on a regular basis to read a small portion together. Share reflections on what you have learned. If you spend a good time with these works, you will increase your knowledge about our messenger ﷺ as well as the love that you have for him ﷺ. Also if you feel like you have increased your knowledge to such an extent that you are willing to engage in a competition that is specifically designed to increase our love of the messenger ﷺ, join us on Oct 21, 2023 for our sixth Annual Seerah Quest. More info on it can be found here.