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Testimony 17 - 19

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Testimony: The Bodily ascent of the Prophet Muhammad

TESTIMONY 18 WHY DID THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD (S.A.W) PERCEIVE GOD BY HIS OCULAR VISION?

a) BODIES OF THE PROPHETS ARE AKIN TO THE BODIES OF THE PEOPLE OF HEAVEN.

The sermonist and the traditionist Muhammad Badr Alam Al Madni in his famous book Tarjuman Al Sunnah (Vol.III.pp.293-318) proved citing various traditions that the prophets in the worldly life are blessed with the characteristics of the people of the Heaven. Their bodies do not decompose even after their burial.

Aus bin Aus narrated, The Apostle of Allah (S.A.W) said: “The best of all days is Friday; Adam was created and died that day, and on that day the trumpet will be blown (all living beings would swoon away). Ye urge blessings of Allah on me very much on that day. No doubt your blessings are presented before me.

They said: O Apostle of Allah! How our blessings would be endowed before you? Because you would have been decomposed (in the grave).

He said: Lo! God the Great and Almighty forbade the earth to decompose the bodies of the prophets. (Abu Dawood, Al Nasai, Al Darmi, Ahmad, Al Hakim, Ibn Maja narrated from Abu Darda).

It is, therefore, evident from above that the earth doesn’t decay the bodies of the prophets. Their spirits dominates their bodies. We have a living example in the life of the Prophets (S.A.W) it was usual that for many days he had nothing to eat. Sometimes for two months the hearth could not be put on in his house. He totally abstained himself from eating for 40 days. It is known as ‘saum wisal’. When his companions wished to do the same, he stopped them and said you are not like me. If I abstain from food, my Lord feeds me... (Al Khasais) Once he was asked about the food of the people of the Heaven, he said it would digest by way of sweat smelling perfume.

The Chief of the Prophets excrements resembled the refuses of the people of the Heaven.

Moaz bin Jabal narrated: I was walking with the Apostle of Allah (S.A.W) He said: You come close to me. So when I came close to him, I smelt such a fragrance from the Apostle of Allah (S.A.W) which I had never smelt (even) in Ambergris, and Musk. (Al Khasais, Agreed Tredition)

Anas narrated. The Apostle of Allah (S.A.W) came to us and took (some) rest. He perspired. My mother came with a bottle and began to collect his sweat in it. The Apostle of Allah (S.A.W) got up and said: O Omme Sulaim! What are you doing? She said we mix this perspiration with our perfume, it becomes the best of all the perfumes. (Muslim)

Anas narrated, When the Apostle of Allah (sallallaho alaihi wasallam- used to pass from any street of Al Medinah, the people found his fragrance, and said the Apostle of Allah (sallallaho alaihi wasallam- had passed from this way (Al Bazar, Abu Yala).

Aesha (radiallah anha) narrated: I said, O Apostle of Allah! You enter the toilet, when you come out, I go into it after you, but I do not see anything expect I find the smell of Musk. He said I am from the group of the prophets, our bodies are grown like the sprits of the people of the Heaven, anything, which comes out, is swallowed by the earth. Seouti in his 'AlKhasais' mentioned it among the miracles and mentioned the seven different (strong) chains of narrators to this report.

Muhammad Badr Alam Almadni, quoting authentic historical citation wrote: That the companions of the Prophet who were martyred in the Battle of Ohad, namely Amr bin Al-Jomaih, Abdullah bin Al-Omar AlGhaffari, and Hamza bin Al-Muttalib (radhiallah anhum) were found in tact when their graves were excavated i.e. after 46 years and 50 years of their burial to rebury them on other places. (It is not necessary that every martyrs body should remain intact). However, he said when the bodies of the martyrs among his companies could remain intact then certainly, the bodies of the prophets are preserved under the earth because the prophets grades are far more higher than the martyrs. He wrote: There is no difference between the bodies of the prophets and that of the people of the Heaven. The characteristics of their bodies are the same. Adam when took the food of Heaven, his body did not require to discharge the excrements. The difference was made by the food of this world. Adam came to this world with his heavenly body to inhabit this world, and the Apostle of Allah (sallallaho alaihi wasallam- went with his body to vision Allah and honoured the heaven with his ascent into it. No doubt the prophets own the characteristics of the heavenly bodies in this world. (Tarjuman al Sunnah. Vol.III.P.296)

From the aforesaid glowing facts, we get that when Adam's heavenly body could be brought up in this world, similarly Jesus human body has since been made to live in the heaven. 34, the bodies being the same.

The system of maintaining the human bodies is found here and above in the skies.

Certainly the body of the Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) went above the skies and into the Heaven and since it is certain that the people of the Heaven will be blessed with visioning Allah, therefore, the Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) after reaching there did vision Allah by his ocular vision.

b) THE PROPHET'S ARE MADE TO WORSHIP THEIR LORD PERPETUALLY

Anas bin Malik narrated, the Apostle of Allah (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) said: the prophet's are alive in their graves and they offer their prayers. (Abu Yala, Al Bazzar. Alhaitham said that the chain narrators of Abu Yala is all trustworthy.)

In another narration Abu Huraira quoted Allah's Apostle (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) having said: Whenever any one offer his salutations to me. Allah puts back my soul into me, till I reply to his salutation. (Abu Dawood).

Allamah Seouti has explained in details the words (radda alayya roohi), 'puts back my soul into me' in his 'Al Hawi Lil Fatawah'.

Seouti also referred to Al Baihaqui who has written a book on the life of the Prophet's in their graves and said that God has put back the souls of the prophet's and they live like martyrs and worship in their graves. (Vol. II.p.154) Also, See, Tarjuman Al Sunnah, Vol. III.pp.301, 302.

Ibn Masud narrated: The Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) said: No doubt! Allah has appointed the angels who move throughout the earth and convey me the salutations of my people. (Ahmed, Al Nasai, Al Hakim, Al Baihaqui said: It is a correct report.)

If we put together the two reports i.e. God puts back my soul into me, and 'the angels who convey him the blessings of his people' ,we come to the conclusion that God has made his prophet to live in his grave. He replies to the salutations offered by the Muslims in front of his grave, and the blessings offered to him on the face of the earth are conveyed to him by the angles. Looking into the explanation of Seouti and Al Baihaqui we know that the prophets have been blessed with everlasting lives like the people of the Heaven. There are various other traditions, which prove that they worship there Lord in there graves.

c) WHY COULD NOT MOSES VISION ALLAH?

The Quran is very positive that the people of the Heaven will look upon the Aspect of Allah and it is preceded that the bodies of the prophets are akin to the bodies of the people of the Heaven, then Why couldn't Moses vision Allah?

It may be recalled that Moses had requested:

O My Lord! Show (thyself) to me that I may look upon thee. (7/143)

The very request of the prophet Moses makes it clear that to look upon Allah was possible in this world by a prophet. And the granting of this request by Allah further substantiates this possibility. But to have a look upon Him was made conditional as He said:

Thou gazes upon the mount; if it abide in its place, then wilt thou see Me. (7/143)

Revealing of the Glory on the mount stands as proof for the possibility of looking upon Him. Had it been utterly impossible, God would have not manifested His Glory, and said to Moses that he could never see Him. But Moses could not fulfill the condition of gazing upon the mount and he fell down in a swoon.

Imam Razi in his commentary to: "(His) sight never swerved nor did it go astray', said: The sight of Muhammad (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) never swerved. If we say that the Lote Tree was covered with (gold) Locusts or moths, he did not incline toward them, his sight did not astray from the motive. We may say, these were there a test for Muhammad (sallallaho alaihi wasallam). If we say that (Lote Tree) was manifested with the Glory of God, then the Prophet's sight did not swerve right or left but it continued to gaze the Glory unlike Moses whose sight was cut off and he fell down unconscious..."

The verse in citation states the concentrated power of observation of the Prophet Muhammad (sallallaho alaihi wasallam).

Khazin explaining the aforesaid verse said: "When the Lord of Honour manifested His Glory on the mount, the sight of Moses was cut off and he lost consciousness. But our Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) remained stable on that great place where the eyes are dazed with astonishment, the feet tremble, and the sight swerves hither and thither. God the Mighty and the Glorius stating the power (of observation) of our Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) on that place of great grandeur said: His sight never swerved nor did it go astray.' (53/17).

Secondly, no doubt that Moses resembled the people of Heaven, but Allah promised the people of Heaven that they would see him in the Heaven, and not in this world. Moses in his worldly life could not reach the Heaven like our Prophet Muhammad Mustafa (sallallaho alaihi wasallam).

Thirdly, it was necessary for the Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) to undergo a heart operation before he could have a look upon the Glory of God. This heart operation gave him the power of observation. (See. Why The Prophet's Chest Was Ripped Open). Moses had requested for this: O My Lord! Lay open my chest. (20/25). But God has chosen Muhammad for this grand miracle. After laying open his chest, his heart was stuffed with belief and wisdom, it was then that he could have full resemblance with the people of Heaven. So he was able to observe the amazing splendors of the Heaven and above the Heaven, till his person reached to the utmost height of perfection and God said unto him:

His sight never swerved Nor did it go astray.

In Tarjuman al Sunnah we find: His chest was ripped open (before the ascent), so that he may be able to have a look on the Glory of God. (Vol.IV.p.160)

Moses himself acknowledged the excellence of the Prophet over him. Abu Saeed Saeed Al Khudri narrated, the Apostle of Allah (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) said: "... I ascended to the sixth Heaven. There I found Moses... who said: People think I am more honourable to God than him, but he excels me in honour before God. (Al Baihaqui)

It may be noted that all the prophets are venerable, by excelling one prophet over the other is not to belittle the other, but it only means Allah hath bestowed him much more honour in comparison to others, as He said:

Of those messengers some of whom We have caused to excel the other. (2/253. Pickthall)

Abdullah Yusuf Ali has given a wrong translation of this verse. There is yet another verse telling us:

And We preferred some of the prophets above others. (17/55)

That is why Moses admitted more elevation of the Prophet before God over himself.

Moses was endowed with the characteristics of the people of Heaven but it was miracle of laying open of the chest, (See. Heart Operation In The 7th Century Revelation), that strengthened the Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) on the observation of Allah's realm and he crossed the seven heavens with angelic power. He was given those eyes that could see the Heaven and the Lote Tree. He attained that height where he could hear the hissing of pens 35*. He was further raised on the green cushions till he reached the Sublime Throne. His eyes were given such a power that they did not wink nor swerved away. Both the groups of Sahabas (=companions) agree to all these details and acknowledge his bodily ascent and admit that the Prophet saw the greatest signs of his Lord. The only difference between them is that he looked upon the Glory of God or not. This stands proved in itself. Why?

The Quran stated, the people of the Heaven will see Allah by their ocular vision. So he had those eyes which saw the Heaven and everything above Heaven. Therefore, he saw his Lord too. He said: "' saw my Lord.' (Ibn Abbas Ibn Jarir, Imam Ahmad). The only difference is that our Prophet saw his Lord a head of all the other prophets (alaihi alsalam). The people of the Heaven will be shown the Glory of their Lord in the Heaven after Doomsday.

Our Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) has precedence in creation over all other prophets. He said: "I was first among the prophets in creation and I was sent as very last of them. (Aby Huraira/Ibn Abi Hatim)

It is our Prophet in whose favour a covenant of faith was taken by all the prophets that if any one of them found (Muhammad) during his life time, he should believe in him and render him help and that he would bind his people under this covenant to believe in him and help him. (3/81 to 83, see, Vol. I. chapter V and part III of this book Caption. The Prophet of the Prophets Nabi al Anbia and Faith)

Anas bin Malik narrated, the Apostle of Allah (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) said: I will be the first among the mankind to get out (of the earth) when they are resurrected, I will be their leader when they gather, I will be their spokesman when they will hearken, I will be their intercessor when they are constricted. I will be their hope in their disappointment, I will be bestowed honor and the keys (of comforts) will be in my hand. On that Day the Banner of Praise will be in my hands. I am the most honoured among the children's of Adam by the Grace of my Lord. (Altrimizi)

Obai bin Kaab narrated, the Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) said: On the Day of Reckoning I will be the Imam of the prophets and their spokesman and their intercessor, this I say without any boast. (Altrimizi)

Anas bin Malik narrated, the Apostle of Allah (sallallaho alaihi wasallam- said: I shall come on the gate of the Heaven...the gatekeeper will say I have been ordered not to open it for any one coming before you. (Muslim).

That is to say that our Prophet Muhammad (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) will perform the opening ceremony of the Great and Grand Heaven. Thus, we see that the Prophet is granted priority in all the aforementioned great occasion. No doubt! Allah blessed him with His vision prior to all in the night of the ascent.

(d) ANNULLING A DOUBT ON VISIONING ALLAH

Few say that Allah is Omnipresent. He has neither dimensions nor any bounds. He neither changes places nor He moves, then how can one be close to Him or can have look on His Aspect?

The reply to it is evident. God is hidden from His creatures as to His reality. There are veils between Him and His creatures. The creatures cannot see Him. These veils are for creatures. He is free from all impurities and nothing can veil Him.

Every one among the creatures has veil of darkness or light according to his certitude. His awareness or perception depends upon his knowledge. The light of His Greatness, Sublimity, Magnificence and Awe, veils all the angels. All the creatures are veiled to see their Creator.

Their knowledge does not make them to perceive Him, or their understanding fails to grasp His Aspect spiritually. Their intelligence does not make to vision His Omnipotence. Some people are veiled being involved in sinful pleasures.

In love and affection the souls get close to each other. The closeness with Allah is spiritual not material. It is according to the status one gains in worship of Him, as we find in the following narrative.

The Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) said: My Lord says: If my slave comes nearer to Me for a span of hand, I go close to him for an arm's length; and if he comes nearer to Me for a cubit, I go nearer to him for a span of out-stretched arms; and if he comes to me walking, I go to him running." (Anan/Albukhari)

Imam Razi defining the verse, 'And verily he saw him at another descent' said: "It is untrue to think that God moveth or changeth places, the descent to get close is abstract and not sensory. Lo! God the Great gets close with mercy and grace to his slave, and the slave does not see Him. It was, therefore, that Moses said: God! Show Thyself to me, i.e. remove some of the veils of sublimity and magnificence and come close to Thy slave with mercy and grace, so that I can see Thee."

God, the Exalted removing the veils of His Sublimity and Grace shall bless the people of the Heaven with a sight of His Aspect. It is preceded that the Prophet (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) said that Allah will be seen as we see the moon and the sun in the cloudless sky. God promised the people of the Heaven that they would see their Lord by their ocular vision:

That day faces will be resplendent looking toward their Lord. (74/22- 23)

For having a look on Aspect of Allah, no motion or movement is involved. He will only cause the veils hiding His Glory to vanish. Thus granting a vision of His Aspect, God shall perfect all His virtues on the people of Heaven.

Granting priority over all God, the Loving, and the Beneficent raining mercy on His beloved slave the Prophet Muhammad (sallallaho alaihi wasallam) blessed him with a look on His grand Aspect in the night of Meraj (Ascent).

34. The descent of Jesus will be before the Doomsday. (See. Vol. I. p.III)

35. A place from where the angels copy the order from the Preserved Tablet for implementation all over the world.

36. Kauthar a river in Paradise endowed specially to the Prophet of God (sallallaho alaihi wasallam). It is whiter then milk and sweeter than honey running on a bed of pearls and rubies and smelling musk.

37. The doctrine that God is transcendent reality of which the material universe and man are only manifestations. It involves a denial of God personality and expresses a tendency to identify God and nature.

38. The power of the vision of angels should not be judged to our power of sight. Even on the Day of Judgement the people will be given such an amazing power that they will see everything happing among the billions.

39. Albaihaqui said in a report, the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihi wasallam- while being carried to Aqsa Mosque saw Moses in his grave praying and then again in 6th Heaven, similarly he saw the prophets on land (Jerusalem) and the in the heavens. There can be no doubt to their presence in different places in different times as they are alive like martyrs (Vol.II p.135)

40. It is a temple mentioned in the Quran (52/4), which is visited by the heavenly beings for the adoration of their Creator. It is said to have been spiritual prototype of Kaaba in Makkah. (Ibn Kathir). A Yusuf Ali quite opposed to the agreed tradition gave his own explanation which denied its existence in the 7th heaven and derogated to Sunnah.

41. It was said that a more solid substance was crusted down to dust whereas Moses had only fallen senseless. The answer is the bodies of the prophets are like the bodies of the people of the Heaven which would never decay. See Testimony 18 a, b, c.

42. On the very gate of Hell, there is a bridge all over the Hell leading to the Heaven. It is sharper than a sword and thinner than a hair. The people of Heaven will pass over it to the tune of their good deeds. Some like the blinding lightening and some like the wind sent forth. The infidels will fall from over it into the Hell-Fire. The Fire will say to the believer: Pass thou over, for thy light is extinguishing my flame.