By Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi, New Age Islam
06 July 2016
Eid-ul-Fitr marks the Prophet’s ambition of spreading peace, pardon, social cohesiveness, cultural festivity and national unity and solidarity. According to a Hadith tradition, when the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) arrived at the city of Madinah, he strongly felt the need for a feast that could imbibe peace, unity, charity, brotherhood, equality and deep humane emotions. Having received the divine inspiration, Prophet (pbuh) announced: "Almighty Allah has granted two blessed Eids: Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha ..." (Abu Dawud).
But the radical jihadists believe that “Islam has never been a religion of peace, not even for a single day”, as the self-proclaimed caliph of ISIS Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has stated, then why would they celebrate Eid as an occasion of peace and love? It is a time for terror, an occasion to create fear in the hearts of disbelievers, an occasion of mayhem and calamity for the infidels (Mulhideen), non-believers (Kuffar) and polytheists (Mushrikin), the exclusivist Islamist terms that are taken to include both non-Muslims and liberal and moderate Muslims. This is what the self-styled jihadists profess and practice.
This is precisely why the radical outfit of jihadists have created global terror and calamity throughout the month of Ramadan. After the ghastly attacks on the innocent people of Orlando in Florida, Istanbul in Turkey and Dhaka in Bangladesh, they have recently terrorised the traditional Muslims of Baghdad in Iraq so that they may not engage in any way in the celebration of Eid al-Fitr as “day of peace”. Most deplorably, the latest jihadist atrocity has taken place at Islam's holiest site, the holy Prophet's Mosque in Medina in the Saudi kingdom's west. According to the Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya news channel reports, other blasts occurred in the Red Sea city of Jeddah near the US consulate and in Shiite-dominated Qatif on the other side of the country. Four Saudi security personnel were killed and five others were wounded in a suicide bombing outside one of Islam's holiest sites, the Prophet's Mosque in Medina.
The global Islamic scholars like Shaikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi have condemned the attack disassociating it with Islam which is “innocent of these criminal acts that harvested safe lives and shed pure blood". But it is an irony that while denouncing the attack in the harshest words, they could not say a single sentence explaining why the radical Islamists and jihadists chose the holy Islamic month of Ramadan as ‘a month for mayhem’?
Even anti-extremism Syrian Islamic scholar Shaikh Muhammad Al-Yaqoubi, who is known for his refutations and rebuttals of the ISIS’ jihadism on theological and ideological foundations, sufficed to only denouncement. He just pointed to a saying of the Prophet (pbuh) about harming people of Medina: The Prophet PBUH said, “Anyone who harms the people of Medina, Allah will make him melt in fire like iron or like salt in water” (Bukhari). One more Hadith he wrote in this connection goes like this: “Anyone who scares the people of Medina Allah scares him, and Allah curses him, the angels & mankind, none of his work is accepted (Bukhari). He commented that “the attack in Medina is a sign of the end of ISIS”.
But merely condemnation is not enough. The problem of the modern jihadism is much deeper. While Muslims the world over are preparing for the Eid al-Fitr that marks the end of Ramadan, jihadists are hell-bent on making it ‘a month of mayhem for the infidels’. It is simple and plain. The spokesman for the ISIS Abu Mohammed al-Adnani had said in the very beginning of the Islamic month that the jihadists should “make it, with God’s permission, a month of calamity for infidels everywhere.” Another extremist distributed a manual for using poisons, adding: “Don’t forget. Ramadan is the month of victories.”
In fact, the radical jihadist belief in the holy month of Ramadan as ‘a month of victory’ comes from a twisted reading of Islamic events of the prophetic era. It is true that the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) participated in his first military expedition called Ghazwa-tul-Badr, during Ramadan in 624. He achieved the conquest of Mecca (Fatah-e-Makkah) also during the month of Ramadan eight years later. But these Islamic events are substantial evidence of the Prophet’s call for peace, pardon and general amnesty.
The event which happened on the 10th of Ramadan (11 January 630 AD) is being misconstrued by the Daesh’s self-styled jihadists inciting Muslims to practice Malhamah (revenge on enemies). But the reality is that this event is an epitome of the Prophet’s noble policy of Marhamah (forgiveness). At the conquest of Makkah (Fatah-e-Makkah), the Prophet (pbuh) showed forgiveness and general amnesty for even his intense enemies, the pagans of Makkah who oppressed, attacked, mocked and tortured him for years.
Just after the Prophet (pbuh) achieved the crowning victory over the Quraish of Makkah, he proclaimed general amnesty without the least emotion for retaliation. Some of his companions, overjoyed with victory, shouted: “Al-Yumu Yumul Malhamah” (today is the day of retaliation). But the Prophet (pbuh) strongly reverted: “La al-Yaumu Yaumul Marhamah” (No, today is the day of pardon and forgiveness).
The Prophet of peace (pbuh) graciously forgave the obstinate hate-mongers of the Quraish who had left no stone unturned in their nefarious attempts to assassinate him. They had severely wronged him and inflicted the gravest forms of injury and torture upon him. It was the same hardcore pagans of the Quraish who attacked the Prophet (pbuh) in violent ways and in different places. They fought the Prophet (pbuh) and his companions at the battle of Badr and Uhud, blocked them in the battle of trench and went to the extent of plotting dangerous conspiracies to kill him. They tortured, humiliated, scorned and mocked him and his followers in the village of Ta'if in Makkah. When they stoned the Prophet (pbuh) and made his feet to bleed, God sent the angel Gabriel who said to him:
"God has heard what your people say to you and how they reject you. He has ordered the angels of the mountains to obey whatever you ask them to do." The angel of the mountains called him, greeted him and said, "Send me to do what you wish. If you wish, I will crush them between the two mountains of Makkah."
But the Prophet said: "Rather, I hope that Allah will bring forth from their loins those who will worship Allah alone and not associate anything with Him." (Reported by Bukhari)
The grave persecution inflicted by the Makkans upon the Prophet (pbuh) continued unabated. When they transgressed the limits, the Prophet’s companions asked him to curse them. But the Prophet of peace and mercy (pbuh) gently said: "I have been sent as a mercy for people and not to curse them" (Muslim).
The pagans of Makkah did not give up their atrocious attacks on the Prophet (pbuh) and his followers even after they migrated to Madina. They waged war against Muslims in Madina to put an end to Islam, which was growing fast among the poor and the downtrodden sections of Arab society. But even then, the Prophet’s (pbuh) pacifist nature and magnanimous peaceful behaviour remained unchanged. When the people of Quraish attacked him in the battle of Uhud, Prophet’s head suffered injury, his front teeth got smashed and the blood started to seep from his head. At the sight of this heart-wrenching incident, his beloved companion, Hazrat Umar (r.a) felt deeply pained and thereby said: “O Prophet of God, Curse them!” But again, the Prophet of mercy replied: "My Lord did not send me to curse. Rather, I was sent as a mercy." Then he said: "O Allah, Guide my people!" (Hadith report authenticated by Al-Albani) This was his Prophetic characteristic of tolerance and mercy that God Himself has confirmed in his book: “And We have not sent you (O Muhammad) but as a mercy to mankind.” (The holy Quran 21:107).
After God granted the Prophet (pbuh) victory over people of Makkah, they wondered if the Prophet (pbuh) would kill them all in retaliation as the conquerors did in the pre-Islamic Arabia. Having felt their unrest, the Prophet (pbuh) asked them: “O people of Quraish! What do you think I will do to you?” Aware of the Prophet’s mercifulness and nobility, they said in one unison: “You will do good to us, because you are a noble brother, son of a noble father, Abdullah and grand-son of a noble grandfather, Abdul Muttalib.”
Thus, at the conquest of Makkah, the Prophet of Islam (pbuh) granted general amnesty and openly announced: “Go back your homes! You are all free!" Then, the Prophet (pbuh) recited a verse from the Qur’an, proving that what he did was in full synergy with the course of action adopted by the Prophet Joseph (pbuh): The Prophet proclaimed: I say as my brother Joseph said, "No blame will there be upon you today. Allah will forgive you; and He is the most merciful of the merciful." (The holy Quran 12:92).
Clearly, there is a stark contradiction between the Prophet’s peaceful victory and the present-day self-styled jihadists’ tenacious terror in Ramadan. The Prophet (pbuh) achieved the bloodless conquest of Makkah without revenging the most tenacious criminals there who attacked him, plotted to kill him, stoned him, made his teeth to bleed, cracked his jaw and split open his blessed face, peddled hate against his faith, murdered his beloved companions, deformed the dead body of his martyred and very endeared uncle, Hazrat Hamzah, and even eaten his liver with wild rancour.
Contrary to the Prophet’s peaceful and rightful victory, the ISIS terrorists are killing innocent civilians, mutilating their dead-bodies, demeaning and torturing women, besieging the cities, destroying lives and properties of both Muslims and non-Muslims, vandalising the historical Islamic sites and shrines including the holiest site of Islam, the Prophet’s mosque too in the latest terror strike in Madina.
A regular Columnist with New Age Islam, Ghulam Rasool Dehlvi is a classical Arabic-Islamic Scholar, Researcher in Culture & Communication Studies and English-Arabic-Urdu Translator.
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