An overview of the Meccan period
The five points below sum up the attitude of idolaters towards Muslims throughout the thirteen year Meccan Period.
- Isolation or severing of all kinds of social and commercial relations.
- Violent intimidation and even murder, forcing Muslims to immigrate.
Allah, glory unto Him, describes the Muslim situation in the Quran as follows:
“Surely the sinners used to laugh at those who believe. And when they passed by them, they winked at one another. And when they returned to their own followers they returned exulting. And when they saw them, they said: Most surely they have gone astray! (al-Muttaffifin, 29-32)
In response, the method abided to by the Messenger of Allah -upon him blessings and peace-, constantly reinforced with Revelation advising him the most suitable manner to adopt, could be summed up as:
- Cultivating spirituality in the hearts of believers.
- Being patient in the face of hardships.
- Counseling with the most beautiful advice.
- Continuing to persevere without the least compromise.
- Trusting in and submitting to the Almighty.
As a consequence of this method, despite unfavorable conditions, the Noble Prophet -upon him blessings and peace- was able to succeed in his cause and overcome all difficulties. A fruit of this long and enduring phase was the blessing of Medina, a strategic town, whose locals had embraced the truth in masses. Previously expelled from Ta’if where he had gone with such great expectations, the Prophet -upon him blessings and peace- had never even gone to Medina; yet with Divine reinforcement, Islam had spread like wildfire in the town, and only a short while later it became ready to welcome the Muslims, first and foremost the Noble Messenger -upon him blessings and peace-.
Inspired by the triumph in his cause, a prominent historian has made the following observations regarding the genius of the Prophet upon him blessings and peace:
“If the three great measures of genius are the greatness of the cause, the limitation of means and the magnitude of the result, then who could dare to compare the greatest figures of modern history with Muhammad?” (Lamartine, Histoire de la Turquie)
The Almighty gave permission to Muslims to migrate only after a thirteen-year phase of blood and tears, as a consequence of which the faiths of Muslims attained contentedness and their hearts prospered with spirituality. Simpler put, the believers paid the dues for their belief.
The period also saw the laying of the foundations of the Islamic state and civilization in Medina that was to set an example for all of mankind, and the raising of persons of strong character who, enthused by the ecstasy of belief, would not shrink back in testing times. These persons virtually became guiding stars for the entire ummah.
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