Is it the only month to express love and devotion? No… not at all. Every heart should be suffused with love of the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam) all the time all the year, all life, as it signifies perfection of Faith and beauty of Islam. It is food of souls, cure for ills and relief for eyes. A heart not kindled with the love of Rasoolullah (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam) is inhabited by darkness, desolation, wretchedness and stoniness. A heart deprived of his love is filled with unbearable stink and filth.
Our Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam) is a role model for entire humanity. If one does not love him, one does not love humanity. Such a person is a beast in man’s clothing. The Holy Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam) says, “None of you can become a perfect Muslim until he loves me more than his family and your property.”
The paramount demand of his love is to follow his ways and advices. Love of Allah also demands of us to love His dearest Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam). Anything pertaining to love of Allah operates in two dimensions — One, Allah’s love for his servant; two, servant’s love for Allah. The first dimension of love is testified by one’s following the Holy Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam). A person who claims to love Allah but he does not follow His Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam) is making a claim without any testimony, and a claim without testimony is not accepted anywhere. When a person fulfills the demands of the first dimension of love, he is rewarded with the second dimension of love – Allah’s love for him. The following verse of the Holy Quran also deals with this subject.
Allah Ta’ala addresses His Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam), “Say, (O Muhammad, to mankind): If you love Allah, follow me; Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.”
This verse is thus called the verse of love.
Hazrat Sohail bin Abdullah (rahimahullahu) says that love of Allah is signified by love of Quran, and love of Quran is signified by love of the Prophet, and love of Prophet is signified by love of his Sunnah.
Rites performed in the name of love nowadays are of no use if we do not follow the Sunnah. If a person does not perform these self-innovated rites – flags, sweets, processions and lighting, but he adheres to the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam), he is undoubtedly a real love and he does not need to give a proof of his love.
Books of Hadith, Seerah and Islamic history are witness that none of the Sahaba, Tabaeen, saints, `Ulama and Islamic jurisprudents ever adopted the ways for expression of love that we have adopted and made them part of Shari`ah.
We celebrate the birth of Prophet while they followed the ways of Prophet. There is much difference between results of celebrating and following. Those who just celebrate are entangled with superficies having no access to the pith and marrow. Those who follow give preference to the marrow and essence, and do not hesitate to sacrifice their lives for gaining it.
It is a general observation that Bidaats vanish from a society where Sunnahs are prevalent and conversely, Sunnahs depart where bidaats take hold. Isn’t is an eye-opener that the rites that we consider as essential part of Shari`ah have no sign in the early and glorious period of Islam. Islamic jurisprudents, who exhaustively mentioned the rules of bath and ablution, did not make the slightest mention of rites to be performed in the month of Rabi-ul-Awwal. Were they deprived of love and oblivious of its demands? No… by God, it was not so.
If they were not lovers then no one in the world is lover of Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam). Their hearts were so kindled with the love of Rasoolullah that every action of theirs reflected their love. Their love was not confined to their speeches and slogans. Rather, their love was reflected in their homes, their gatherings, their solitude, their villages, their cities and everywhere. They did not need to show their love because their politics, their social behavior, their conduct, their preaching, their jihad manifested their love. A fragrance need not explain that it is a fragrance.
They had zeal to carry forward the mission of the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam). They left their homes and their beloved homeland with their hands carrying the Quran and their hearts imbued with spirit to spread the Prophet’s message. That’s why, their graves are found jungles of Africa, wilderness of China and mountains of Afghanistan.
It was love that moved them to follow the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam), and it is our love that diverts us from the way of Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam). It was their love that instilled life into them and it is our love that has rendered us frozen.
Not a single day passes without witnessing disgrace of Muslims. The entire Ummah is in a mesh of problems. The land of Palestine is bloodstained. Jews flocking in from all around the world have thrown them out of their lands. Our brothers in Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan are facing miseries, hunger, poverty and prosecution. Two Palestinian leaders have been martyred in broad daylight one after another. But we are unmoved, callous and indifferent.
O celebrators of Prophet’s birth! Get aware of true love and realize its demands so you not only describe the beauty of Prophet’s black ringlets but also mention the battles of Badar and Hunain and get ready do something for the suffering Ummah. It is the real demand of love and reward of adherence to the Holy Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihe wasallam).