The Leader


The army sets off against the tribe of Sons of Mustaliq. Victory is easily captured… However, something happens during the way back, which heralds a grave danger.

At a resting place, a dispute takes place out of a trivial cause between a Muslim from Medina and another who migrated from Mecca. Afterwards, the incident swells up fast and starts to turn into a clash between the Meccans and the Medinans. If no precaution is taken, solidarity and brotherhood among Muslims, which until then constituted the greatest pillars of their material power, is about to vanish.

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) intervenes and gives commands; the army starts to march. In fact, these are the hottest hours of the day which are always spent resting. That day a rapid march is carried on up to the evening and during the night. The next day at about noon, the permission to rest is finally given, but nobody in the army, which has been marching for nearly twenty four hours, has the power to continue yesterday’s fight. The whole army falls asleep in a faint-like state. In the meantime, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has made initiatives to eliminate the emerging danger and the most dangerous hours for the fight to grow have passed. [1]



 He borrows a certain amount of dates from one of his friends. When the time to pay back comes, as he does not have the means to pay himself, he asks a Muslim from Medina to pay off his debt for him. However, the dates the Muslim from Medina gives are lower in quality. The creditor does not consent. The Muslim from Medina gets angry and says:

          “Do you turn down the dates that Allah’s Messenger gives?”

The creditor humbly asks:                                                                               

          “If even Allah’s Messenger does not behave justly, from whom shall we expect justice?”

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is not informed about this situation. When notified, he gets sad and, with tear-filled eyes, says:

          “The man is right!..”

With his command, the dates are changed. [2]



While giving a sermon in the mosque, a recently converted Muslim who was seeking a vendetta stood up. He interrupted the speech of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH);

-“O apostle of Allah!” By pointing a group who was sitting in the mosque, he says, “Their ancestors killed a person from our family. Therefore, we demand killing someone from them in response” The prophet Muhammad (PBUH) answered calmly but in a decisive manner:

“Father’s revenge cannot be taken over the son” (3)



He is distributing the spoils of the war among his friends. He is pressured by the crowd. Someone leans on the Prophet with his weight. He wants to push away the man with the small stick in his hand and to ease the crowd around him. However, the stick accidentally scratches the side of the man’s mouth and it bleeds a little. When Prophet Muhammad sees this, he (PBUH) immediately stops distribution. He extends the stick to the man and asks him to do the same to him and to settle. He is serious. Everybody is in bewilderment. His friend hesitates a while but then pushes the stick away with his hand and says:

          “O Allah’s Messenger! I forgive you.” [4]



It was the first and most difficult years of his prophethood. Of the hundred doors he went in order to explain his religion, perhaps only one was opened. One day, he gathered his close relatives in the foot of a hill near Mecca. He was going to show his personality and previous life as a proof of the truthiness of His claim as a prophethood. He asked his relatives:

“If I say there is an army of enemy behind this hill and preparing for a raid, will you believe me without asking any proof?”

They said, “Yes” because up to now no one has witnessed any lie of you. We swear that you are “Al-Amin” (the Trustworthy)”.

During the rest of the conversation, perhaps the same people there refused his invitation to the Islam and his prophethood, but in fact they had approved him without being aware of it… (5)



The fear Quraysh’s notables have is growing more and more. In spite of all the precautions they have taken, the grouping around Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is ever widening. They gather and decide to “try it the sweeter way”. They choose a deputy whom they believe will be influential on him. The deputy starts speaking to the Prophet (PBUH):

“O Muhammad, you hurt our gods, sowed seeds of dispute and enmity among us, destroyed our solidarity and unity, brought us all sorrow and suffering. If you want wealth, let us make you the richest person of our land. If you want strength, power, and leadership, let us make you our leader. If you want a beautiful woman, tell us, she will be yours. If you are ill and this claim of prophethood stems from that, let us find the best doctors and get you treated.”

With the confidence that a human being cannot possibly resist such offers, the deputy finishes his speech and waits for his answer. Now Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has the word:

          “I do not want property. Neither do I have a wish for rulership. And I do not have any desire for anyone other than Khadijah (his wife). I am not ill. I am only a weak slave of Allah. It is He who sent me as a messenger to you. If you accept this, follow me. Otherwise, do not ever forget this: if you put the sun in one of my hands, and the moon in the other, I shall not turn back from this cause.” [6]



One of his friends comes near him and begs. He is not pleased with that; he thinks that everyone should cater for themselves and not be a burden to others. Instead of giving something and sending him away, he asks:

          “Do you have something worth money in your house?”

“There is a sack I use as a sheet and bed and a cup I drink water from.”

“Go and bring them here.”

When the things are brought to the mosque, they are auctioned. They are sold for two silver coins. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) hands him the money and says: With one silver coin, buy food. And with the other, buy an axe and bring it to me.

His friend carries out what is said. When he comes with the axe, Prophet Muhammad is preparing a handle for the axe himself. He puts the axe on the handle and gives it to his friend. He says:

“Now go to the forest, cut wood and sell it. Let us meet fifteen days later.”

His friend comes back fifteen days later. He is beaming with happiness. He says:

          “O Allah’s Messenger! I saved up ten silver coins.”

And he shows the money. Now the Prophet is also smiling:

          “Buy some food and clothes with the money. Get what you need and do not forget that it is more honorable for someone to stand on his own feet than begging. Begging is only for the ill and the disabled.” [7]



 A nomad Arab comes with the intention of becoming a Muslim, but his decision is not certain yet. In order to make it clear, he asks Prophet Muhammad (PBUH):

          “What are you calling people to?

          “To worship only Allah. It is He whom you call in trouble; He saves you. It is He whom you call in drought; He makes the ground green. It is He whom you call when you are lost in a desert; He causes you to find your way.”

The man’s all questions are answered because Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) explained the religion he is calling into in a way that the man would understand. [8]



One of his friends shares a big distress, which he cannot mention to anybody, with Prophet Muhammad (PBUH):

          “O Allah’s Messenger! My wife gave birth to a child; its skin is dark. But I am white.”

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) understands the problem. Tactfully, he handles the matter in another way. He asks a question without waiting for him to finish:

“Do you have camels?”

“Yes, I do.”

“Then, what are their colors?”

“Generally red.”

“Are there grey ones, too?”

“Yes, sometimes.”

“Where does this grey color come from?”

“Probably, they take after one of their ancestors.”

 “The child your wife gave birth to maybe takes after one of its ancestors.”

His friend leaves with a satisfied conscience and a happy face. [9]



His daughter, Fatima (May Allah be Pleased with er), is leading an extremely troubled marriage life. With the words of her husband, Ali (May Allah be Pleased with Him):

“We did not have a servant at home. Fatima carried out all the work herself. We were staying in a house consisting of only one room. In this room, Fatima would light the stove and try to cook. Many times, while blowing the fire, sparks would make holes in her clothes. Therefore, her clothes were full of holes. This was not the only thing she did. Among her chores were making bread, and carrying water needed in the house. Moreover, her hands were calloused because of turning the mill wheel and her back was calloused because of carrying water.”

Those days captives of war are brought to Medina. They are distributed among needy Muslims to help with the housework. Ali says to his wife:

          “Go and ask one for us from your father.”

Fatima does. However, her father’s, the Prophet’s, answer is negative:

          “My daughter, the needs of my poor friends who are sleeping in the mosque and are busy with learning come before yours. Sorry, but before providing for them, I cannot do anything for you.” [10]



Mecca had just been conquered. The daughter of the chief of the tribe Sons of Mahzum commits theft. The name of the thief is Fatima. She is brought to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to be punished. However, the political state of affairs of the time necessitates that the relations with the Sons of Mahzum should not be upset. Having evaluated the delicacy of the situation, some of his friends appoint someone as a mediator whom they think Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) cannot turn down. This is the son of the Prophet’s adopted child Zayd; namely, young Usama. In other words, his grandson in a way.

Usama says:

“O Allah’s Messenger! Will you forgave this woman for the sake of her father…”

          However, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) experiences one of the angriest moments of his life. His answer is stern:

“What you are asking now is the reason why other peoples before you were eradicated. Among them, too, when someone respected and powerful committed a crime, s/he was forgiven; but when someone from the public did, s/he was punished. By God I swear, if the one who committed this crime were not the daughter of the chief of the tribe Sons of Mahzum, rather if she were the daughter of Allah’s Messenger, Fatima, I would decree the same punishment.”

He gives the command and the thief’s punishment is carried out. [11]



He is inspecting the market. He plunges his hand into the wheat sack on the counter of one of the shops. The grains on the surface are large, shiny, and of high quality whereas from the inside he takes out wet and lower quality grains. Frowning, he asks the shopkeeper for the reason and the shopkeeper says:

          “I cannot sell otherwise…” upon which the Prophet says:

          “Whoever deceives us is not one of us.”

He gives the command and the wet grains are brought up to the surface and they are sold that way. [12]



On the plains of Badr, the first serious and decisive war of Islam is about to start. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has stationed his small army in war po

sition and waits for the enemy to start, which is three times larger than his army. In the meantime, one of his friends, Hubab son of Mundhir, who is regarded as an expert in war positions, comes to him and asks:

“O Allah’s Messenger! Did Allah command you to position the army this way?”

          “No, it is my own precaution.”

          “Then, O Allah’s Messenger, the army is positioned in the wrong way.”

And he explains the correct way of positioning in accordance with the discipline of military. Without showing a hint of contradiction and caprice, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) follows his friend’s advice. The army’s position of war is changed. A couple of hours later Islam wins its first victory. [13]

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) would pay attention to competence and worthiness in appointing authorities to different ranks in administration and he would appoint the deserving people even if they were young or not from noble families. In the rightful matters, he would want obedience to himself and to his authorities, but would state that in the matters contrary to justice and truth, the community did not have the responsibility to obey. Thus, seeing it necessary to obey the ruler within the realm of justice, he would not see the public as compelled to serve himself and would not regard himself above them. On the contrary, he was one of them.



[1]Diyanet Vakfı, Komisyon,  İslamda İnsan Modeli ve Hz. Peygamber Örneği, p.146.

[2]Afzalur Rahman, Siret Ansiklopedisi, III/190.

[3]Fadl ar- Rahman, ibid., I/74.

[4]Fadl ar- Rahman, ibid., I/75.

[5]Fadl ar- Rahman, ibid., I/70.

[6]Fadl ar- Rahman, ibid., I/67.

[7]Fadl ar- Rahman, ibid., III/212.

[8]M. Yusuf Kandahlawi, Hayatu’s-Sahaba, I/73.

[9]Yrd. Doç. Dr. Abdullah Özbek, Bir Eğitimci Olarak Hz. Muhammed (s.a.v). p.100.

[10]S.Nur, I/368.

[11]Ed: Doç. Dr. Recep Kılıç, Hz. Peygamber'in Hayatından Davranış Modelleri, p.43.

[12]Ed: Doç. Dr. Recep Kılıç, ibid., p.37.

[13]Yrd. Doç. Dr. Abdullah Özbek, ibid., p.213.