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Precursors and indicators of Prophet-hood of Muhammad were those miracles that appeared before his prophet-hood depicting his great mission of being the final Prophet of Allah to mankind and Jinn. These indicators were so profound that they left no doubts that prophet Muhammad shall be the Prophet who was commissioned to liberate the world from the shackles of ignorance, idolatry, and injustice of human civilizations through divine guidance of the Creator of the world. Nearly all of men of religious knowledge of the Jewish and Christian denominations who came in contact with him testified to his great personality and his destined mission through the signs that were present around which were either the bodily signs such as the khatm An_Nubuwwa ( the seal of Prophet-hood) which lay under his armpit or the miraculous unnatural events such as the cloud over-shadowing him. Hence, the precursors and indicators of his Prophet-hood can be divided into two parts:


1-indicators that were foretold about his mission in previously revealed books such as the Torah of Moses (the Gospel) and the Injeel (the Bible) of Jesus (Allah’s peace be upon both of them ). Adherents to these faiths who possessed profound knowledge of these scriptures easily recognized the future mission of Prophet-hood of Muhammad when they came in contact with him in his early childhood and youthful days. A clear story which can be cited here to historically demonstrate this is the story of the Christian Monk called Bahira when he met Prophet Muhammad in his first trip to Sham alongside his uncle Abu Taalib. This story has been accepted by almost all historians and biographers of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). According to Ibn Ishaq the story went like this:



"He (Bahira) saw the Messenger of Allah in the caravan when they approached, with a cloud over-shadowing him among the people. Then they came and stopped in the shadow of a tree near the monk. He looked at the cloud when it over-shadowed the tree, and its branches were bending and drooping over the apostle of God until he was in the shadow beneath it."[78] After Bahira saw this extraordinary event he stared at the Prophet closely "finding traces of his description (in the Christian books)." He asked him many questions, "and what the apostle of God told him coincided with what Bahira knew of his description."2 Here the monk foretold the prophethood of the Prophet and he advised Abu Talib to "guard him carefully against the Jews, for by Allah! if they see him and know about him what I know, they will do him evil; a great future lies before this nephew of yours, so take him home quickly." According to the glorious Qur’an, the People of the Book (Jews and Christians) knew the characteristics of the holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) just as they knew their children. This is due to the detailed descriptions and account of this great Prophet, the time of mission and the place of his emergence in their books. Allah says:


ٱلَّذِينَ ءَاتَيْنَٰهُمُ ٱلْكِتَٰبَ يَعْرِفُونَهُۥ كَمَا يَعْرِفُونَ أَبْنَآءَهُمْ ۖ وَإِنَّ فَرِيقًا مِّنْهُمْ لَيَكْتُمُونَ ٱلْحَقَّ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ

“Those to whom We have given the Book recognize it as they recognize their own children. But some of them conceal the truth while they know.(Al-Baqara: 146)


2-indicators that concerns his birth, and some wonderful and unusual events. These indicators continued until he attained the age of forty and subsequently was commissioned a prophet and then a Messenger.



About his birth, many events were reported of him which in a whole indicate the possibility that there might have been something unusual about Amina's pregnancy or delivery. They show that like some other prophets' births, the birth of Muhammad also was accompanied by miraculous events. These extraordinary events may have functioned as signs for Muhammad's prophethood, though the authenticity of all of such events is debatable.



Narratives that correspond to the life of the Prophet before his mission illustrate that his prophecy never occurred accidentally or by chance. Rather, many things had taken place to gradually establish the doctrine of his apostleship from God. One may express the same attitude in the case of the extraordinary events which happened surrounding the birth of the Prophet. In short, they might be regarded as irhas(indications foretelling prophethood).



In his late maturity age when he was approaching his forties, he took to seclusion and loneliness. He used to spend most of his time in seclusion at the cave Hira which was located about two kilometers away from Makkah. He would go there carrying with him some dates and water and will spend his time there meditating on Allah and the creations. In this period, many miraculous and unusual events used to happen in his life which all indicates that he was to be a Prophet among these includes:



1-greetings of rocks and trees. The rocks and trees of Makkah used to talk to him and also extends greetings to him when he passed by them. in an authentic hadith narrated by Samura Ibn Jundub (may Allah be please with him) that he heard the Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Allah saying: “ surely I know of a rock in Makkah which used to greet me before I was sent(as a Prophet), I know it(even) now”. According to some reports this rocks and trees used to greet him by saying: “peace be unto Oh! Messenger of Allah”



2-whatever he sees in his dreams comes true and real like broad day light. This stage has a closed link with the commencement of revelation on the Prophet Muhammad (may the peace be upon him). in an authentic hadith narrated by the mother of the believers; Aesha may Allah be please with her ) she said: “ the first indicator with which the Prophet hood of the Messenger of Allah was begun with was that he never had a dream except that it comes true like broad day light” {Al-Bukhari}




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