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What is Seerah – Part 1

Seerah

The month of Rabiul Awwal has begun, and because it is the birth month of the Holy Prophet , many of our discussions and talks revolve around the many aspects of the amazing life of Our Beloved Muhammed .

Last week we had a very interesting competition amongst our own staff members regarding a book on the life of the Messenger of Allah , this week we will be discussing, “What is Seerah”, and next week our main Rabiul Awwal theme will commence, wherein we are also planning a competition with our listeners.

What is the meaning of the word Seerah?

The word Seerah comes from an Arabic verb that means to traverse or journey. So Seerah, meaning the biography of a person, is called Seerah because you are traveling that person’s journey. You are walking in their path and following in their footsteps. So when we study the life and times of the Prophet , it is as if we are following His footsteps.

Even though the Arabs would call Seerah the biography of any person, later on, Muslim scholars used it exclusively for the biography of the best human being. So no scholar says Seerah, except that it means the biography of the life and times of Prophet Muhammad  and incidents that happened during his time.

What is Seerah?

“Off course I love him!” this is the answer of any Muslim when asked, “Do you love the Prophet ”, but do we really love him? Do we really know who he was, enough to love him ? It is natural that when a person claims or displays love for another individual that he or she would want to know him better. In the same way one who claims to love the Prophet Muhammad  has to know this individual if he really claims this type of love.

Muhammad ibn Abi Waqqas RA, the son of Saad ibn Abi Waqqas radhiAllahu ‘anhu, said that their father used to teach them Seerah of Rasoolullah  and say:

“Learn them for these are the traditions of your fathers.”

The grandson of ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radhiAllahu ‘anhu, ‘Ali ibn Hussain R said,

“We used to be taught Seerah as one is taught the Qur’an.”

It was that important for them.

Every Muslim child starts studying the Quraan as soon as they reach an age which their parents deem suitable or are able to speak clearly. But how many of us know the Seerah? What if we gave the Seerah some of the importance as we give to the Noble Quraan? Undoubtedly the Holy Quraan is the greatest book and must be learnt, studied and practised by every individual, but why are we so negligent when it comes to the Seerah? Had we studied the life of the person to whom the Quraan was revealed, our conduct would certainly have been better.

Some experts have described the Seerah as follows:

اَفْعَالُ وَاقْوَالُ وَاَحْوَالُ وَاَيَّامُ رَسُوْلِ اللهِ

Seerah refers to the actions, words, conditions and events from the life of Allah’s Messenger, Muḥammed .

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