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On the Prophet's birthday: Teachings in life

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    On the Prophet's birthday: Teachings in life

    Some important teachings here we may all apply to our lives. From Mohamed Elmasry of the Canadian Islamic Congress, sent out in Friday's e-mail bulletin which is unfortunately not yet archived on their website hence no URL. You can check out their archived Bulletins here.

    Today, as millions of Muslims worldwide mark the birthday of Prophet Muhammad (May God's peace and blessings be upon him), it is a good time to reflect on the exemplary life of this remarkable human being.

    In this age it is very difficult to follow the example of the Prophet [peace and Blessings be upon him]. We live in a world of more-is-better - more food, more wealth, more money, etc. Our egos stand in the way of our reaching out to God and to His creation. We allow ourselves to judge others too easily, but cannot accept anyone else's judgment of us. We have become self-centred, not God-centred.

    But in the Holy Qur'an, God Almighty states: "You all have an excellent example in God's Messenger (especially) those who hope to meet God, who believe in the Last Day, and who always remember God." (33:21)

    The Qur'an also states: "Say (Oh Muhammad), 'If you love God, then follow me. God will love you and forgive your sins, as God is All-Forgiving, All-Merciful'." (3:31)

    In the life and teachings of the Prophet [peace and Blessings be upon him], there are many examples for Muslims and non-Muslims alike, concerning how to love God Almighty, and about the benefits to be gained by filling our hearts and lives with that love.

    Today I would like to share with you seven of the Prophet's [peace and Blessings be upon him] teachings to which I personally aspire and which I have pledged to follow in my life:

    1. "Whoever believes in God and in the Last Day should say what is good or keep silent; and one should also be generous to his/her neighbours and guests." (adapted from Imam Muslim's narration)

    2. "Always look to those who are less fortunate than you; do not look up to those who are more fortunate... in order that you not take lightly God's bounties upon you." (adapted from the narrations of Imam Al-Boukhary and Imam Muslim)

    3. "Give gifts to one another, as this will enhance your love for one another." (adapted from the narration of Imam Al-Boukhary)

    4. "God has no mercy on people who show no mercy to others." (adapted from the narrations of Imam Al-Boukhary and Imam Muslim)

    5. God's Messenger [peace and Blessings be upon him] used to pray: "O God, I seek your protection from anxiety, sorrow, weakness, laziness, cowardice, stinginess, the burden of debts, and being oppressed by others." (as narrated by Imam Al-Boukhary and Imam Muslim)

    6. "The worst thing for a person to fill is the stomach. A few mouthfuls are sufficient for anyone to survive. If a person insists on filling the stomach, then one should fill a third of it with food, another third with water, and leave one third empty for easy breathing." (adapted from the narration by Imam Tirmizi)

    7. "Live in this world as if you were a stranger or a traveller." (as narrated by Imam Al-Boukhary)

    [Prof. Mohamed Elmasry is a faculty member at the University of Waterloo and national president of the Canadian Islamic Congress. He can be reached at [email protected]]

    Doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother ~ Khalil Gibran

    A very good article. Thank you for posting Nadia.