From the economic point of view, the Prophet (PBUH) sacrificed his successful trade, a gave away all his earnings for the mission and when its success was assured, he distributed all his wealth with his own hands; he preferred a life of extremely modest and simple living for his own. He did not leave behind any money for his family nor acquire any property or establish any financial rights for his household during his lifetime nor did leave behind any hereditary office of succession. He did not recruit any guards or servants or acquire conveyance and did not like to have any furnishings in his home.
From the political point of view, he did not claim any prerogative for himself and never used his authority against anyone beyond that prescribed by God. He did not issue any arbitrary law to exalt his political position. Although a serious state of emergency persisted in Medina, and he had to face ever increasing intrigues and conspiracies of the Jews and hypocrites, he never interned anyone or imposed any restrictions of issued any conscience-killing orders, or established any emergency courts or ordered flogging. On the other hand, he gave perfect liberty for criticism, advice and difference of opinion. He also allowed people to reject his personal suggestions. These rights and privileges were not merely on paper but were actually practiced. Occasionally, the Prophet (PBUH) discarded his own valuable opinion and accepted others point of view.
If he wanted to give some concession to someone he obtained permission from his companions. For instance, once when Hazrat Abul Aas came as a prisoner and Hazrat Zainab sent a necklace as his ransom, which was gift from Hazrat Khadija (the Prophet’s first consort), the Prophet (PBUH) appealed at a public meeting for the return of that necklace. Similarly, when the property of Abul Aas came as a booty he returned it but only after taking permission from the public. Once, a deputation arrived at Jaarana for the release of prisoners of the Battle of Hunain appealing to the Prophet in the name of his foster mother. The prisoners had already been distributed and when the Prophet released prisoners attached to the Quraish on his own initiative, he appealed for others at a public meeting and when the people, found that the Prophet (PBUH) had released prisoners allotted to his relatives, all of them released those given to them. In such cases the Prophet never used any pressure.
SOCIAL POINT OF VIEW
From the social point of view, the Prophet (PBUH) preferred equal status for himself and never claimed any preferential treatment, nor did he adopt any higher standard in the matter of food or dress, nor did he like a distinctive place at public gatherings. He would not see people standing before him as a mark of respect or encourage others to address him with the title of master or chief. On the battlefield or while travelling, digging the ditch or building mosques, he worked with his companions in carrying building material, breaking stones and collecting wood with his own hands. He allowed the people to make a stern demand from him for the recovery of a loan and he offered himself to the public for taking revenge if he had done any wrong to anyone.
It was this lofty ideal of the redeemer of the humanity which was entrusted to us, and it was to popularize this message that we were raised to the high position of “witnesses over men” and the “balanced community”. This slogan of truth was given to us as a trust so that as successors of the Prophet (PBUH) we play the role of redeemer of the humanity and whenever mankind is in difficulties and the society is involved in a crisis, we rush to their rescue. But we failed to keep aloft this banner of truth, rather we destroyed it with our own hands. The result was that when the modern age took a turn towards materialism, we were unable to check it. It is the bitter fruit of our failure that the entire human life is now facing a crisis, world leadership is in ungodly hands, conflicting materialistic ideologies clashing with one another are disturbing the peace of mind, and we ourselves have become their slaves. No amount of misfortunes instils in us a sense of shame, and neither the disorders in Islamic society nor the crisis in human ranks infuse in us a sense of duty.
Behind the deceptive curtains of the modern materialistic civilization, let us survey the conditions of the humanity and a distressing spectacle will be before our eyes. The mankind is caught in the clutches of strange values and everywhere there is a struggle for wealth and power. The light of moral consciousness in man has extinguished, crimes are increasing with the advance of civilization and as psychological perplexities prevail, mental peace is altogether gone. Confusion prevails in the human mind and character. No sector of human life is uncontaminated. The spirit of truth has gone out of philosophy and science and there is no sincerity in beliefs and ideas. Spiritual values have declined while the law has become devoid of the spirit of justice, and self-seeking mentally has replaced the deep urge for service in politics. In the social sphere, groups of oppressors and the oppressed have emerged. Sex dominates the fine arts and contradictions are found in every part of social life. Rival forces are at war and the whole history is turned into a dreaful drama. Learning has advanced but its follies continue to pester us. Fountains of knowledge are there but these very fountains foster misconception which enslave humanity. Piles of wealth lie scattered all over but a vast majority still lives in abject poverty, penury and want. Thousands of organizations, political groups, ideological parties and contradicted relationships exist but there is no brotherly attachment between man and man. There is the talk of development of rational, political, moral and social consciousness, but the most hateful weapons of oppression and violence are still being used against humanity. History is a vast battleground in which there are horrifying clashes between imperialism and freedom, Communism and capitalism, democracy and dictatorship, individualism and collectivism, and the Orient and the Occident.
This is the world in which we live. We are facing the challenge of global crisis. Modern materialistic civilization or the man fostered by it is incapable of taking up the challenge. There is no new philosophy which can provide even a momentary relief. Nowhere can salvation be found. In this perplexing period when darkness is enveloping man from all sides there is only one light which can be seen, far off, fourteen hundred years away. This is the light of the greatest benefactor of the humanity, light of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), which we claiming to be the followers of Muhammad (PBUH), have eclipsed by our confused thinking and unprincipled conduct.