Story No. 195 – Prophet Mohammed (saw) and Forbearance [Story of convert to Islam]

Prophet Mohammed (saw) and ForbearanceHistory reveals that Abdullah ibn Salaam was Jewish before he embraced Islam in the time of Prophet Mohammed (saw). After becoming a Muslim, Abdullah ibn Salaam tried to convince Zaid ibn Sa’nah, a Jewish friend, to accept the religion of Islam. Despite Abdullah ibn Salaam’s effort in explaining the essence of Islam, Zaid ibn Sa’nah insisted in his faith, Judaism, and he refused to become a Muslim.


Abdullah ibn Salaam narrates that one day he entered Masjid al-Nabi (the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah) where he saw Zaid ibn Sa’nah sitting among Muslims in line for performing prayer. Abdullah ibn Salaam said “being overcome with joy, I approached Zaid ibn Sa’nah to inquire the reason why he accepted Islam.” Zaid ibn Sa’nah responded “one day while I was reading the Torah, I reached the verses that explain the attributes of Prophet Mohammed (saw). I paid a close attention to capture his characteristics described in Torah. I said to myself it is better that I sit in Prophet Mohammed’s (saw) presence to see if he possesses these attributes, among which there was forbearance. I observed his behaviors and choice of words for several days and I found all the attributes in his personality. There was only one left unseen, forbearance; so I attempted to continue my quest for I read in Torah that, “Mohammed’s forbearance and patience supersedes his anger. Although ignorant people treat him with disrespect and bad manner, they will not see anything in return from him except forbearance and patience.”


Zaid ibn Sa’nah continued “following my search I went to the Mosque again. I saw a Bedouin Arab man from desert while riding his camel entered the Mosque. He got off his camel when he saw Prophet Mohammed (saw) and said that he was from some tribe who were struck by famine and therefore they were in need of food and sustenance. He said that the people of the tribes were Muslims and they hoped for help from Prophet Mohammed (saw). Prophet Mohammed (saw) turned to Imam Ali (as) and asked, “Is there any money left from the previous savings?” The response was negative and sad for Prophet Mohammed (saw).” Zaid ibn Sa’nah said, “I then interfered and mentioned to Prophet Mohammed (saw), O the Messenger of God, if you wish I would participate in a trade with you. I lend you some amount of money until the time of harvest when I will accept dates for the same amount in return. Prophet Mohammed (saw) received my offer and the trade, accepted the money and gave it to the Bedouin Arab.”


Zaid ibn Sa’nah said “I was waiting until a week before the harvest. One day I went to the desert where I found Prophet Mohammed (saw) sitting in the shade of a tree, surrounded by his companions (Sahabah). I approached him impolitely, grab his collar and told him, “I know you well, you take money from people and fall short in return. Do you know there is not much left to our mutually agreed time mentioned in our trade?”


Umar ibn al-KhattabZaid ibn Sa’nah proceeded, “I treated Prophet Mohammed (saw) furiously with great ignorance, although there was still a week left to the harvest. Suddenly I heard an aggressive voice; Umar ibn al-Khattab drew his sword and asked me to leave with a rude call. Prophet Mohammed (saw) prevented him with patience and said to him there was no need for quarrel. Prophet Mohammed (saw) said I should be recommended to maintain forbearance. Then he asked Umar ibn al-Khattab to give me certain amount of special dates. Umar ibn al-Khattab followed the order and added 20 extra units of dates to the original amount. I was curious why he gave me extra dates; Umar ibn al-Khattab said that the extra dates were the result of Prophet Mohammed’s (saw) forbearance. Since I suffered from Umar ibn al-Khattab’s anger, Prophet Mohammed (saw) ordered him to add 20 extra units to the original amount, so that I would be satisfied.


After seeing such manner and great forbearance and patience, I have fallen in love with Islam and Prophet Mohammed’s (saw) behavior. I have embraced Islam by testifying that Allah (SWT) is one and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah (SWT).”


There exist hundred of such examples in the lifestyle of Prophet Mohammed (saw), each is just a drop from the great ocean of his manners to which Almighty Allah (SWT) refers as sublime manners in Noble Qur’an “And most surely you conform (yourself) to sublime morality.” (Noble Qur’an, 68:4) Also Noble Qur’an says: “Certainly you have in the Messenger of Allah an excellent exemplar for him who hopes in Allah and the latter day and remembers Allah much.” (Noble Qur’an, 33:21) Prophet Mohammed (saw) proclaimed, “I have not been sent except to perfect noble character” indeed this is one of underlying reasons why Islam is growing fast.