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Few things to learn from the life of Prophet Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam)

The Prophet Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) set out with Abu Bakr (radiAllahu anhu), seeking to gather intelligence about the Army of the Quraish. As they were patrolling the area, they came across an old man. The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) asked him about the Quraish’s army, about Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and his Companions, and about the news he heard concerning both Groups.

The old man said, “I will not tell you until you first tell me who you are from?”

The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said, “When you inform us (about what I asked), we will inform you (about what you asked).”

The old man said, “So it is a trade (of information), this for that?” The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said, “Yes.”

The old man said, “It has indeed reached me that Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and his companions have left (Al Madeenah) on such and such day. And if the one who informed me about that was truthful, then they are today in such and such place,” which in fact was where the Muslim army was on that day.

“And it has reached me that the Quraish have left (Makkah) on such and such day. And if the one who informed me thereof was truthful, then today they are in such and such place,” which in fact was where the army of the polytheist was on that day.

The old man then said, “I have informed you about what you wanted to know, so now you tell me who you are from?”

The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) simply replied, “we are from water,” after which he (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and Abu Bakr (radiAllahu anhu) forthwith left the old man, who remained where he was, confused, saying to himself, “…….from the water of Iraq?”.

[Seerah ibn Hishaam (2/228)]

Benefits from this Incident:

1] Simplicity of Prophet Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) that although being a leader of Muslims  he himself used to go for Important task like Intelligence gathering. This special quality of his out of other many makes him superior to and differentiate him from other leaders of the world.

2] A lesson for othode who go into war. Prophet Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) used to gather Intelligence before any war. This shows the importance of Intelligence gathering as you can see in todays world. Whichever country has strongest intelligence agency, that country is  considered  to be the strongest. So before any attack, gather well the intelligence lest you cause yourself to fall into destruction.

3] Important task should be handed over to intelligent people.

a] Like in the above case, Prophet Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) asked the old man not only about Quraish but also about Himself so that it does not create any doubt in old man’s mind. Had he (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) asked only about Quraish,  definitely old man would have doubted Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) to be from anti-Quraish group and he would have hid the information which he later gave to Prophet Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam).

b] It is important to hide the information from leaking to any unknown person. When the old man asked Prophet Muhammed (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) where he was coming from, he (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) did not lie but gave answer which was correct but it kept the identity secret, hence the mission secret as we know everything originated from water and this is what Prophet (sallallahu alaihi waallam) said that he came from water.

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