» His Character » Forgiveness
Another great quality of Muhammad was that he never took revenge on anyone for personal reasons and always forgave even his staunch enemies A'isha said that God's Messenger never took revenge on his own behalf on anyone She also said that God's Messenger was not unseemly or obscene in his speech, nor was he loud-voiced in the streets, nor did he return evil for evil, but he would forgive and pardon The people of the Quraish rebuked him, taunted and mocked at him, beat him and abused him They tried to kill him and when he escaped to Medinah, they waged many wars against him yet when he entered Makkah victorious with an army of 10,000, he did not take revenge on anyone He forgave all Even his deadliest enemy Abu Sufyan, who fought so many battles, was forgiven, and anyone who stayed in his house was also forgiven
The leaders of T'aif, who engaged scoundrels to throw stones at him when he visited that town in order to invite them to Islam, were also forgiven Abdullah bin Ubayy, leader of the hypocrites of Medinah, was forgiven Muhammad offered his funeral prayer and prayed to God for his forgiveness The Qur'an mentions this incident in these words: "And never (O Muhammad) pray for one of them who dies, nor stand by his grave Lo! They disbelieve in God and His Messenger, and they died while they were evil doers" Abdullah bin Ubayy worked all his life against Muhammad and Islam and left no stone unturned in bringing him into disrepute and in trying to defeat his mission He withdrew his 300 supporters in the battle of Uhud and almost broke the backbone of the Muslim He had engaged in intrigues and acts of hostility against the Prophet of Islam and the Muslims It was he who raised the incident Of if k through his allies to discredit God's Messenger by spreading scandal about his wife, A'isha
"Lo! They who spread the slander are a gang among you Deem it not a bad thing for you; nay, it is good for you Unto every man of them will be paid that which he has earned of the sin; and as for him among them who had the greater share therein, his will be an awful doom"[Qur'aan 24:11]
"An Abyssinian slave, who killed Hamza, Muhammad's uncle, in the battle of Uhud, and after the victory of Makkah embraced Islam and came to him, was forgiven The wife of Abu Sufyan had cut the chest of Hamza and torn his liver and heart into pieces in the battle of Uhud She quietly came to the Prophet and accepted Islam He recognised her but did not say anything She was so impressed by his magnanimity and stature that she said, "O God's Messenger, no tent was more deserted in my eyes than yours; but today no tent is more lovely in my eyes than yours"
Ikrama, son of Abu Jahl, was a great enemy of God's Messenger and Islam He ran away after the victory of Makkah and went to Yemen His wife embraced Islam and brought him to the Messenger of God Muhammad was pleased to see him and greeted him with the words: "O emigrant rider, welcome" Sufwan bin Urnaya, one of the chiefs of Makkah, was also a great enemy of Muhammad and Islam He sent Umair ibn Wahab, with a promise of reward, to kill Muhammad When Makkah was conquered, he ran away to Jeddah and hoped to go to Yemen by sea Umair ibn Wahab came to Muhammad and said, "O God's Messenger! Sufwan ibn Umayya is a chief of his tribe He has run away from fear and will throw himself into the sea" He was given protection When he came back, he requested Muhammad to give him two months to think He was given four months and then he became a Muslim by his own will
Habir ibn al-Aswad was another vicious enemy of Muhammad and of Islam He had inflicted a grievous injury to Zainab, daughter of the Holy Prophet She was pregnant and was emigrating to Medinah The polytheists of Makkah obstructed her and Habbar bin al-Aswad intentionally threw her down from the camel She was badly hurt and had a miscarriage He had committed many other crimes as well He wanted to run away to Persia but then he came to Muhammad, who forgave him
He was all for forgiveness and no amount of crime or aggression against him was too great to be forgiven by him He was the complete example of forgiveness and kindness, as mentioned in the following verse of the Qur'an:
"Keep to forgiveness (O Muhammad), and enjoin kindness, and turn away from the ignorant"
He always repelled evil with the good of forgiveness and kind behaviour, for, in his view, an antidote was better than poison He believed and practiced the precept that love could foil hatred and aggression could be won over by forgiveness He overcame the ignorance of the people with the knowledge of Islam, and the folly and evil of the people with his kind and forgiving treatment With his forgiveness, he freed people from the bondage of sin and crime, and also made them great friends of Islam He was aexact image of the following verse of the Qur'an:
"Good and evil are not alike Repel evil with what is better Then he, between whom and you there was hatred, will become as though he was a bosom friend"