‘REAL SKETCH OF THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD (PBUH)’
(Published by – Minhaj ul Quran International)
Minhaj ul Quran International is a religious organization with an organizational network in more than 90 countries. Its founder, Dr. Tahir ul Qadri, and his entire team work tirelessly to achieve the set goals and have succeeded remarkably. It functions on different fronts like Dawah, Education, publication, and welfare. Having separate forums for women, youth, and students, MQI plays a cardinal role in the mental, spiritual, and educational development of masses, regardless of age and gender, the effects of which are noticeable. The inculcation of a habit of book reading in the people succeeded by the spread of knowledge is the greatest contribution of this organization. Minhaj Publication department is very active in bringing new and interesting books into the public domain, inspiring the public for reading.
Thus far, Minhaj ul Quran has published thousands of books that are available in hard and soft copies. The books written by Dr. Tahir ul Qadri are highly sought-after; however, those authored by writers like Dr. Hassan, Dr. Hussain, and others also have gained popularity among readers. These books having diverse themes, without any doubt, add to the knowledge of people, help them to broaden their horizons of thinking, and sharpen their power of understanding, besides helping in self-purification.
Howbeit, the freshly published book of MQI namely ‘A Real Sketch of The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)’ caught my attention and subsequently inspired me to suggest it to others. The book is thin, about 150 pages, but the content it holds makes it the finest. It principally focuses on Prophetic life and underscores the humanistic aspect of Islam and its Prophet (pbuh). It has been published to counter the acts and narrative of anti-Islamic elements. Dr. Tahir ul Qadri comments that ‘blasphemers indulge in making blasphemous sketches of Prophet (pbuh) but we tried to present an actual sketch of merciful Muhammad through this book – so is the name’.
The book starts with the heading ‘Traits of Islam’ that encompasses ‘Love, mercy, compassion, kindness, liberalness, tolerance, benevolence, forgiveness, forbearance, altruism, charity, peace, moderation, etc. These aforementioned traits have been spotlighted throughout the book in light of the traditions of the beloved Prophet (pbuh). The book is comprised of two parts. Part one, having around 100 articles – gives information about the birth of the Prophet (pbuh), and importantly a general description of his personality. It gives an idea about the physical appearance of the Prophet (pbuh). It makes mention of the Prophet’s beauty.
The latter takes a reader to the world of imagination as if he/she is facing Prophet (pbuh) and noticing every bit of his blessed appearance. Furthermore, it offers a description of His manners like – walking, eating, talking, sleeping, and his beautiful being. Indeed, this part of the book could prove contributory to kindle the love of the best of creation (pbuh) and can serve as a guide to set our life in the right direction.
The second part of the book having 63 articles (corresponding to the Prophet’s age at the time of his departure – 63 yrs), outlines the true image of the Prophet’s (pbuh) personality. This part is based on about 63 different short- topics like the Noble lineage of Muhammad (pbuh), His humbleness and genteelness, honesty and generosity, humanity and morality. Book has given space to many other topics of great importance, which describes the Prophet (pbuh) as a paragon of mercy, as the ambassador of peace and interfaith harmony, helper of weak and indigent, protector of refugees, protector of non-muslims, caretaker of widows and orphans, emancipator of slaves, etc. All these constitute the essence of the religion of peace.
Racism and communalism are existential global challenges. And fortunately, compilers of the book have not skipped mentioning the anti-racism, and anti- communalism approach of beloved Muhammad (pbuh) to clear the stand of Islam on these issues. A separate headline has been dedicated to both.
Book tells us about the humanitarian and philanthropic attitude of the Prophet (pbuh). His struggle for social cohesion, advocacy for moderation, women’s rights, and even animal rights, etc. have also been briefly discussed.
Prophetic teachings on the rejection of hoarding and wasting, revenge, enmity, hatred, etc. have been cited. Prophet’s role in making the first constitution, encouraging knowledge, and wisdom, creating awareness about environment conservation, and introducing justness in warfare have been emphasized in the book.
In short, the book touches on almost every topic and each of which is backed by the Quran, hadith, and excerpts from other credible sources.
As the name of the book indicates, its language is English but has also been translated into different languages to make it more accessible. Minhaj ul Quran Kashmir and renowned educationist and writer/translator Yusuf Jahangir Sahib deserve commendation for ensuring its translation into the Kashmiri language. MQI Kashmir has recently launched Kashmiri Translation of ‘A Real Sketch of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)’ for the people of Kashmir and this can be considered one of the great contributions of MQI – Kashmir to the mother tongue of the valley.
This book could be less important for those having a good grasp of Islamic literature, but for others including children, it is a must-read. We can add this book to the bookshelf of our wards, who nowadays have a predilection for comics, novels, and other storybooks so that they are awakened to the reality of Islam. In case children could not comprehend it, parents can help them to read. This book deserves to be in every home, as it will allow us all to enlighten the soul. Also, school libraries can keep it for the benefit of both teachers and students. We can present it to our non-muslim friends to apprise them of the truth.
In the first edition, there was scope for modification. The reference and numbering of most of the traditions had not been given. But, in the latest edition, they have addressed the shortcoming in response to my first review (published by daily times Pakistan) – a kind of open-mindedness that makes the Minhaj ul Quran distinctive.
Simply put, because of its handiness and best theme, the book is wonderful and can help in understanding the truth and in nullifying the evil designs of Islamophobics. The whole compilation and publication team deserves applause for this effort.
The writer comments on different issues and can be mailed at – [email protected]