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3. The Birth of Muhammad (pbuh)

Muhammad (pbuh) was born on Monday the 12th of the month of "Rabi-AlAwwal" "The Year of the Elephant" ("A'am al-Feel" in Arabic) which corresponds roughly to April 20, 571. The reason it was given this name was because it was the year when Abraha Al-Ashram, the local governor of the Ethiopian protectorate of al-Yemen, mounted his elephant and lead his army in an attempt to storm Makkah and destroy the Kaaba.


Muhammad's father's name was Abdullah and his mother's name was Amina the Daughter of Wahab. His full name was Muhammad the son of Abdullah the son of AbdulMuttalib the son of Hashim the son of AbdulManaf the son of Kusai the son of Kilab the son of Murrah the son of Kaab the son of Luai the son of Ghalib the son of Fihir the son of Malik the son of Al-Nadhar the son of Knana the son of Khuzaima the son of Mdraka the son of Ilias the son of Mudir the son of Nizar the son of Ma'ad the son of Adnan. The ancestry of Adnan goes back to Ishmael the son of Prophet Abraham (pbut). Muhammad's grandfather, AbdulMuttalib, was the leader of the tribe of Quraish, the noblest of the tribes of the region, and his mother was a woman of prominent nobility and ancestry in the same tribe.


Muhammad's father, Abdullah, died before he was born and never saw him. Just before his birth, Muhammad's mother Amina had a dream wherein she saw a light issuing forth from her and illuminating the palaces of Basra. As was the custom in that day, upon his birth Muhammad's mother Amina sent him to live the first years of his life in the desert in order to learn the pure uncorrupted classical Arabic and to breathe the fresh desert air far from the boundaries of the city of Makkah. For the first two years of his life he nursed from Halima Al-Saadia. At the end of the two year term Halima asked his mother to allow him to remain with her a while longer and she consented.


Muhammad's (pbuh) mother Amina died when he was six years old and was followed shortly thereafter by his grandfather AbdulMuttalib when he was eight years old. At this point, he went to live with his uncle AbuTalib and his three cousins Ali, Jaafar, and Akeel. Under the guidance of his uncle he learned to be a sheepherder and a tradesman. As he grew up he earned a reputation for honesty, fairness, humbleness, and integrity. It was not long before the people of Quraish gave him the nickname of "Al-Ameen" ("The Trustworthy").


When Muhammad (pbuh) was about sixteen years old he entered into the employ of Khadeejah the daughter of Khuwailid, a widow, a prominent businesswomen, and one of the nobles of Quraish. Upon reaching the age of twenty five, he married her. It is estimated that she was approximately forty years old when he married her. She became the mother of all of his children except Ibraheem. Their children were Al-Qasim, Al-Tahir, Al-Tayyib, Zainab, Rukayyah, Um-Kalthoom, and Fatima. After the death of Khadeejah, Muhammad married Maria the Coptic who gave birth to his last child, Ibraheem.


One of the first signs of Muhammad's wisdom and diplomacy came when he was thirty five years old. The tribes of Quraish found it necessary to rebuild the Kaaba in order to prevent it from collapse. When they got to the point in the construction when it was necessary to insert the "Black Stone", the tribes began to contend with one another for the honor of placing the stone in it's place. This continued for a number of days until the situation became extremely volatile. Blood pacts were consummated between the various tribes to fight to the death and all-out war was on the verge of breaking out between them over this matter. At this point they came to a peaceful compromise. They agreed that the first person to enter the door of the holy mosque shall choose the one who shall receive this honor and they shall all abide by his judgment.

As it happened, the first person to enter the holy mosque was Muhammad (pbuh). Upon seeing him the tribes all breathed a sigh of relief and proclaimed: "It is Al-Ameen (The trustworthy), we accept him! It is Muhammad!."


Muhammad called for a garment, laid it upon the ground, and then placed the stone in the middle of it. He then asked all of the tribes to select a single representative from their tribe who was then asked to grasp an edge of the garment. All of the chosen representatives then carried the stone together to the Kaaba. When they reached it Muhammad (pbuh) rolled it in place.


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