Codes of Success in the Light of SEERAH
It is a well-known fact that the prophet of Islam Hadhrat Muhammad (PBUH) is the most successful man in the entire human history. According to the Qur’an, he is the perfect example for all mankind. He has shown us the way of achieving supreme success in this world and in the hereafter. (Codes of Success)
By studying the life of the Prophet (PBUH) we can derive those important principles which were followed by him. In short, the prophet of Islam was a positive thinker in the full sense of the word. All his activities were result-oriented. He completely refrained from all such steps as may prove counter-productive. (Codes of Success)
Following are the principles (Codes) through which the Prophet of Islam (PBUH) gained that success which has been recognized by historians as the supreme success:
- Beginning from the Possible.
- Seeing Advantage in Disadvantage.
- Changing the Place of Action.
- Making a Friend out of an Enemy.
- Turning Minus into Plus.
- Power of Peace Stronger than Power of Violence.
- Strategic Thinking.
- Bringing Battle in One’s Own Favorable Field.
- Gradualism Instead of Radicalism.
- Pragmatic in Controversial Matters
1. Beginning from the possible
This principle is well explained in a saying of Hadhrat Ayesha (RA). She said
“Whenever the Prophet had to choose between two options, he always opted for the easier choice.” (AI-Bukhari)
2. Seeing the advantage in disadvantage
In the initial days of Makkah, there were many difficulties and problems. At that time, a guiding verse in the Qur’an was shown. It said:
“With every hardship, there is ease, with every hardship there is ease.” 194:5-61
It means that if there are some difficulties, there are also chances at the same time. And the way to success is to ignore the problems and avail the chances.
3. Changing the place of action
This principle is derived from the Hijrah. Hijrah was not only migration from Makkah to Madinah. It was to find a more appropriate place for Islamic work, as history showed later on.
4. Making a friend out of an enemy
Hadhrat Muhammad (PBUH) was frequently subjected to practices of antagonism by the unbelievers. At that time the Qur’an enjoined upon him to return good for evil. And then, as the Qur’an added:
“You will see your direst enemy has become your closest friend.” (41:34)
This means that a good deed in return for a bad deed has a winning effect over your enemies. And the life of the Prophet (PBUH) is historical evidence of this principle.
5. Turning minus into a plus
After the Battle of Badr, around 70 of the nonbelievers were taken as hostages of war. They were educated people. The Prophet (PBUH) declared that if anyone of them would teach 10 Muslim kids how to read and write he would be freed. This was The1st School in the history of Islam in which all of the students were Muslims, and all of the teachers were from the opponent rank. Here I will quote a British orientalist who commented about the Prophet of Islam (PBUH) to wring success out of failure.
6. Power of peace stronger than the power of violence
When Makkah was conquered, all of the Prophet’s direst opponents were brought before him. They were war offenders, in all aspects. But the Prophet (PBUH) didn’t order to kill them. He just said:
“Go, you are free.”
The result of this kind of conduct was incredible. They immediately accepted Islam.
7. Strategic thinking
In the well-known Ghazwa of Muta, Khalid bin Walid (RA) decided to withdraw Muslim forces from the battleground because he exposed that the enemy far outnumbered them. When they reached Madinah, some of the Muslims welcomed them by the word “O Furrar (O deserters!)” The Prophet (PBUH) said “No. They are Kurrar (men of advancement). Those people of Madinah were thinking dichotomously, either fighting or retreating. The Prophet (PBUH) said, “No. There is also a third option, and that is to avoid fighting and find a time to reinforce yourself.” Now history tells us that the Muslims, after 3 years of homework, advanced again towards the Roman border and this time they won a definite victory.
8. Bringing battle in one’s own favorable field
This principle is derived from the Ghazwa of Hudaybiyya. At that time, the unbelievers were determined to engage Muslims in fighting, because obviously they were in a beneficial position. But the Prophet (PBUH), by accepting their conditions unilaterally, entered into a pact. It was a ten-year peace agreement. Until then, the meeting ground between Muslims and non-Muslims had been on the battleground. Now the area of battle became that of conceptual debate. Within two years, Islam emerged as winning because of the simple reason of its philosophical advantage.
9. Gradualism instead of radicalism
This principle is well-established by a Hadith of Al-Bukhari. Hadhrat Ayesha (RA) says that the first verses of the Qur’an were related mostly to Heaven and Hell. And then after along time when the people’s hearts had become softer, the specific instructions to desist from adultery and drinking were revealed in the Qur’an. This is clear proof that for social changes, Islam advocates the evolutionary technique, rather than the revolutionary technique.
10. Pragmatic in controversial matters
During the writing of Hudaybiyyah treaty, the Prophet (PBUH) dictated these words: “This is from Muhammad, the messenger of God.” The Qurayshites delegate raised objections over these words. The Prophet (PBUH) promptly altered the word and ordered to write simply Muhammad, son of Abdullah.