He was the only man in history who was supremely successful on both the religious and secular levels.” said Michael H. Hart as he placed Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) in the No.1 spot in his best-selling book “The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History.
It’s true. The Prophet was a son. A husband. A father. A friend. A preacher. A leader. A statesman. An Army commander. And he was the BEST in each and every role he played in his life. Have you ever wondered how he managed such multiple roles so spectacularly? Perhaps a peek into his daily routine will shed some light and serve as an inspiration to each of us!
Interestingly, the life of the Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) was not a strict routine. Rather it was purposeful and blessed work and ensuring what was done was done with excellence in mind. Obviously, the most important feature of the Prophet Muhammad’s (Peace be up on him) daily routine was that it revolved around the five mandatory prayer times. His days were divided into chunks with each portion beautifully entwined with the divine meetings with his Creator. Let’s find out more!
The Prophet (Peace be upon him) woke up at Fajr adhan (call to prayer) after a short nap that followed his (usually) long nightly Tahajjud prayers. He set out for the Fajr prayer after he had performed the sunnah prayers at home. He usually did the Sunnah prayers at home prior to going to the masjid for the congregational Fardh ones.
After Fajr, the companions and he would remember Allah (SWT) until sunrise. They would sometimes gather close to the Prophet and have a lively, interactive session and discussion with him. During this time, the Prophet (Peace be upon him) shared advice or his experiences with them or sometimes the companions discussed the dreams they recently had or their lives before Islam and had some light-hearted banter. Generally, the time spent after prayers with his companions was time used to talk with them, teach them, exhort them, remind them, listen to their complaints, and reconcile between them. After this, it was time to return home for breakfast and enquire about his wives’ well-being. Breakfast was usually a simple meal of dates or milk and if that was not available he used to fast.
The rest of the morning was spent in the masjid performing the main duties of the day. It included teaching Islam to visitors. One thing to note is that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) didn’t usually give long lectures to his companions. Instead, they were short reminders with questions that led to discussions that grew the knowledge and Iman of his listeners. Later he visited his daughter Fatima or his companions or anyone who was in need or sick to enquire about their well-being. If he was invited by someone, he accepted their invitation and visited them to make them happy and feel special. Or he would stroll through the market and greet people in a cheerful manner and ensured justice was upheld in the daily trade. In other words, this was the time to attend to his community and tasks that needed his direct attention.
Once this was done, he returned to his home for the Duha prayer and for some quality time with his wives. The time between Duha and Dhuhr Adhan was usually the opportunity for his wives to see him and fulfill their conjugal obligations to each other. Following this, he would take a short midday nap for some time and wake up with the Dhuhr adhan.
Practical tip: Maximize your productivity during the time after Fajr and try to take a short nap in the afternoon to recharge yourself!
After Dhuhr prayer, the Prophet (Peace be upon him) delivered a short speech which was well received by the alert and fresh companions, who were usually there after a midday nap themselves. This part of the day until Asr was scheduled for preaching in the masjid and other works on the ground as the situation demanded. It is worth noting that whenever the Prophet (Peace be upon him) was with his companions he remained as one among them. A stranger could never identify the prophet in these gatherings – he neither walked ahead of his companions nor put an air of importance while walking through the streets. He smiled and looked at each of his companions while talking to them so that each of them felt important and respected.
Practical tip: Let us remember to be humble and approachable always like our Prophet (Peace be upon him). He kept his life transparent before his people and knew each of them like his own children. Isn’t that why Urwah ibn Masud, the Meccan spokesman told the Quraysh, “O people of Quraysh, I have visited the kings of the world, and I have had audiences with Caesar and with Kisra -the Persian Emperor, and with the Negus, and I have never seen the followers of a king so devoted to their leader like the Sahabah (the Companions) in their devotion to Muhammad (Peace be upon him)! And I have never seen any obedience amongst the followers of the kings like I have seen of the Sahabah with the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)!
After Asr prayers, the Prophet (Peace be upon him) rarely involved himself in the outside world or gave lectures to his people. If he did, they were very short as it was time to wind up the day for all. Usually, the time between Asr and Maghrib was family time. At home, he would be at the service of his family: he would milk his sheep, patch his garment, serve himself and mend his shoes. The whole household would also gather together to talk and discuss anything and everything. During these discussions, all topics were on the table but obviously, questions and concerns regarding the faith and its improvement were considered more important.
Practical tip: Never forget your family despite your daily routine. If the Prophet (Peace be upon him) could fulfil his divine mission on Earth, manage the affairs of an ever-expanding Islamic empire AND find so much time for his family (and community!) and look after them every day, what excuse do we have to neglect our families in the name of work pressure or daily routine? So remember, if Prophet (Peace be upon him) could do, we can do it too!
So that brings us to the end of first part of this Series. Stay tuned for Part Two published soon.
Did you enjoy reading this?
What is your take away lesson from today?
(This is PART ONE of a two part series. You can read PART TWO here.)