Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was born on the 12th of Rabi-ul-Awal fourteen hundred years ago in the land of Macca, Saudi Arabia. He was born an orphan and His mother also passed away when He was six years old. After that, it was His grandfather and uncle who raised Him. It was at the age of forty that He received the first revelation and thus the religion Islam came to this world and its followers became Muslims.
The debate of whether the day of birth of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) should be celebrated or not is another issue and which Muslims should not try to dispute upon, because both the opponents and proponents do so out of love for Islam and Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). However, the one thing that every Muslim should try to know about and explore is the that what does the birth of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) stand for and how should a Muslim view His birth.
The lines below try to discuss this matter from different perspectives.
The Arrival Of Enlightenment:
Before the birth of Prophet (PBUH), the world in general and the land of Arabia in particular was in living a life of ignorance and darkness. There was brutality and aggression all around with little knowledge or respect for humanity. People had no knowledge of truth and there was tyranny all around the world. It is after the birth of Prophet (PBUH) that the message of truth in the form of Islam came to the world. It gave people rights, told them to reject falsehood and accept the truth, it gave them social, political, legal and economic framework that allowed mankind to better itself and work for the betterment of humans. Thus, the birth of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) marks the arrival of enlightenment to the dark world that was shadowed by tyranny and extortion.
The Knowledge of Allah:
Before Muhammad (PBUH) the world was lost in oblivion. People had their own Gods and Goddesses to whom they worshiped and considered the deities. Very few were the people in this world who realized that there is only one God who was worth of worship. People had Gods for various purposes and objectives in life. Some would bring rain for them, some would bring wealth, and there were others, which brought them other eases and bounties of life. Thus, there was little concept of the One God and there were even fewer people who believed in Him. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) brought the message of Oneness of Allah to the world. He preached and taught the world that everything that happens in this world is controlled by Allah and that there was none equal or similar to Him. Throughout His life He kept on spreading this message and made sure that this message was spread and accepted by as much people as possible in His lifetime. Thus, if it were not for the efforts and persistency of Muhammad (PBUH) the world would still be living in a place where people had no idea of God or the creation that He has made.
Perfection Of Character:
Such was the character of Muhammad (PBUH) that the people of His time and the time at present cannot find a single fault in His character. The height of His ethical values was such that even His opposers and enemies would vouch for His character and its sublimity. There had been Prophets of God before Him as well, but when it comes to character, there was none who had perfection in character in every regard. Before Him there was lack of ethics all around and people would do whatever they deemed fit and to their benefit. They would burn the daughters alive, adultery and fornication was not a vice and people would care less for what others went through and would continue on going for their personal gain and benefit. In the life of Muhammad (PBUH) one can see the perfection of character and embodiment of ethics. He performed all the roles of life that a person could perform and that too in such a way that His life stands out as an example for all those who want to improve their character. Thus, without the arrival of Muhammad (PBUH) the world would still have no ideal for ethics and character and people would be living a life where there is no care or morality.
The Quest For Knowledge:
The quest of knowledge is one of the major things upon which Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) emphasized throughout His life. He encouraged Muslims to acquire knowledge from wherever possible, even if they had to travel to distant lands. Such is the emphasis He put on gaining of knowledge, learning and education. However, the world did not have the same ideals before Him. Rather, before Him, the people of the world understood things by associating them with myths and supernatural phenomena and the religions of the world prevented the followers from analysis of things by using their senses and logic. Islam came and encouraged learning and reasoning. Prophet (PBUH) encouraged Muslims to think over things so that they could find truth and have a better understanding of Allah Almighty. Moreover, the seeking of knowledge also meant the enlightenment of the human mind pertaining to human existence and its relation with the world. Thus, if it weren’t for Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) encouraging the pursuit of learning and knowledge, perhaps the world would not be such advanced and progressed as it is at present.
Perhaps the greatest purpose for which the life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) stood for is Quran. It is the book that is the doctrine of Islam and Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) throughout His life spread Islam and the revelations completed within His life. This Book is the most complete and comprehensive Book in this world and there is none other book that can contradict or refuse the claims in Quran, all because it is the word of Allah Almighty. Allah did not entrust any other Prophet with this Book, rather He revealed it on His final Prophet making sure that throughout the rest of the time of this world, this Book would stand as guidance for all those who seek it. Therefore, Quran – its message and its preaching is another thing for which the birth and life of Prophet (PBUH) stood for, which ultimately gave humans the kind of life and hope they require to live life in a better and ideal manner.
Recommend Reading – Teachings Of Quran That Can Turn World Into A Better Place To Live
In a nutshell, Rabi-ul-Awwal is the month that should remind a Muslim that it is in this month that Allah sent His greatest blessing to mankind. If it were not for the arrival of Muhammad (PBUH) the world would still be unfamiliar with Allah, ethical and moral values, the importance of learning and knowledge and above all the world would not have seen a doctrine as complete as Quran. Therefore, it is the duty of a Muslim to understand what the life of Muhammad (PBUH) stood for and try to imitate Him for a better humanity and a better world.