A Charter of Islamic Alliance

Just as the Prophet [Pbuh] had established a code of brotherhood amongst the believers, so too he was keen on establishing friendly relations between the Muslims and non-Muslim tribes of Arabia. He established a sort of treaty aiming at ruling out all pre-Islamic rancour and inter-tribal feuds. He was so meticulous not to leave any area in the charter that would allow pre-Islamic traditions to sneak in or violate the new environment he wanted to establish. Herein, we look over some of its provisions.

In the Name of All‚h, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful. This is a document from Muhammad, the Messenger of All‚h, concerning Emigrants and Helpers and those who followed and strove with them.

  1. They are one nation to the exclusion of other people.
  2. The Emigrants of Quraish unite together and shall pay blood money among themselves, and shall ransom honourably their prisoners. Every tribe of the Helpers unite together, as they were at first, and every section among them will pay a ransom for acquitting its relative prisoners.
  3. Believers shall not leave anyone destitute among them by not paying his redemption money or blood money in kind.
  4. Whoever is rebellious or whoever seeks to spread enmity and sedition, the hand of every God-fearing Muslim shall be against him, even if he be his son.
  5. A believer shall not kill another believer, nor shall support a disbeliever against a believer.
  6. The protection of All‚h is one (and is equally) extended to the humblest of the believers.
  7. The believers are supported by each other.
  8. Whosoever of the Jews follows us shall have aid and succour; they shall not be injured, nor any enemy be aided against them.
  9. The peace of the believers is indivisible. No separate peace shall be made when believers are fighting in the way of All‚h. Conditions must be fair and equitable to all.
  10. It shall not be lawful for a believer, who holds by what is in this document and believes in All‚h and the Day of Judgement, to help a criminal nor give him refuge. Those who give him refuge and render him help shall have the curse and anger of All‚h on the Day of Resurrection. Their indemnity is not accepted.
  11. Whenever you differ about a matter, it must be referred to All‚h and to Muhammad. [Ibn Hisham 1/502,503]
  12. Killing a believer deliberately with no good reason entails killing the killer unless the sponsor deems it otherwise.

It was solely by his wisdom and dexterity, that the Prophet [pbuh] erected the pillars of the new society. This phenomenon no doubt left its mark on the virtuous Muslims. He used to bring them up in the light of the Islamic education, he sanctified their selves, enjoined them to observe righteousness and praiseworthy manners and was keen on infusing into them the ethics of amity, glory, honour, worship and first and foremost obedience to All‚h and His Messenger.

The following is a cluster of the virtues he used to inculcate in the minds of his followers:

A man asked the Messenger of All‚h [pbuh] which of the merits is superior in Islam. He (the Prophet [pbuh]) remarked:

"That you provide food and extend greetings to one whom you know or do not know." [Bukhari 1/6,9]

ĎAbdullah bin Sal‚m said: When the Prophet [pbuh] arrived in Madinah, I went to see him and I immediately recognized through his features that he would never be a liar. The first things he (the Prophet [pbuh]) said was:

"Extend peace greetings amongst yourselves, provide food to the needy, maintain uterine relations, observe prayer at night while people are asleep, then you will peacefully enter the Garden (Paradise)." [Narrated by At-Tirmidhi; Mishkat Al-Masabih 1/168]

And he said:

"The Muslim is that one from whose tongue and hand the Muslims are safe. [Bukhari 1/6]"

And said:

"None amongst you believes (truly) till one likes for his brother that which he loves for himself. [ibid 1/6]"

And said:

"He will not enter Paradise, he whose neighbour is not secure from his wrongful conduct. [Narrated by Muslim; Mishkat Al-Masabih 2/422]"

And said:

"A Muslim is the brother of a Muslim; he neither oppresses him nor does he fail him. Whosoever removes a worldly grief from a believer, All‚h will remove from him one of the griefs of the Day of Judgement. Whosoever shields a Muslim, All‚h will shield him on the Day of Resurrection. [Mishkat Al-Masabih 2/422; Sahih Al-Bukhari; Sahih Muslim]"

And said:

"Abusing a Muslim is an outrage and fighting against him is disbelief. [Bukhari 2/893]"

And said:

"To remove something harmful from the road, is charity. [Mishkat Al-Masabih 1/12]"

And said:

"Charity erases sins just as water extinguishes fire. [ibid 1/14]"

And said:

"He is not a perfect believer, who goes to bed full and knows that his neighbour is hungry. [ibid 2/424]"

And said:

"Show mercy to people on earth so that All‚h will have mercy on you in heaven. [Sunan Abu Da'ud 2/235]"

And said:

"Try to avert fire even by half a date (in charity) if not by tendering a good word. [Bukhari 2/190]"

And said:

"Clothing an under-clad Muslim, entitles you to a garment from the Paradise; feeding a hungry Muslim will make you eligible (by All‚hís Will) for the fruit of the Paradise, and if you provide water to a thirsty Muslim, All‚h will provide you with a drink from Ďthe Sealed Nectarí. [Mishkat Al-Masabih 1/169]"

He used as well to exhort the believers to spend in charity reminding them of relevant virtues for which the hearts yearn.

He said:

"The believers in their mutual love, are like the human body where when the eye is in agony, the entire body feels the pain; when the head aches, all the body will suffer. [Narrated by Muslim]"

And said:

"The bonds of brotherhood between two Muslims are like parts of a house, one part strengthens and holds the other. [Bukhari 2/890]"

And said:

"Do not have malice against a Muslim; do not be envious of other Muslims; do not go against a Muslim and forsake him. O the slaves of All‚h! Be like brothers with each other. It is not violable for a Muslim to desert his brother for over three days. [Bukhari 2/896]"

The Prophet [PBUH] used as well to promote that habit of abstention from asking the others for help unless one is totally helpless. He used to talk to his companions a lot about the merits, virtues and Divine reward implied in observing the prescribed worships and rituals. He would always bring forth corroborated proofs in order to link them physically and spiritually to the Revelation sent to him, hence he would apprise them of their duties and responsibilities in terms of the consequences of the Call of Islam, and at the same time emphasize the exigencies of comprehension and contemplation.

That was his practice of maximizing their morale and imbuing them with the noble values and ideals so that they could become models of virtue to be copied by subsequent generations.

ĎAbdullah bin MasĎud [R] once said: If you are willing to follow a good example, then you can have a recourse in the tradition of the deceased, because the living are likely to fall an easy victim to oppression (so they might waver in faith). Follow the steps of Muhammadís Companions. They were the best in this nation, the most pious, the most learned and the least pretentious. All‚h chose them to accompany the Prophet [pbuh] and establish His religion. Therefore, it is imperative to get to know their grace, follow their righteous way and adhere as much as you can to their manners and assimilate their biography. They were always on the orthodox path. There is then the great Messenger of All‚h [pbuh] whose moral visible attributes, aspects of perfection, talents, virtues, noble manners and praiseworthy deeds, entitle him to occupy the innermost cells of our hearts, and become the dearest target that the self yearns for. Hardly did he utter a word when his Companions would race to assimilate it and work in its light.[Mishkat Al-Masabih 1/32]

Those were the attributes and qualities on whose basis the Prophet [pbuh] wanted to build a new society, the most wonderful and the most honourable society ever known in history. On these grounds, he strove to resolve the longstanding problems, and later gave mankind the chance to breathe a sigh of relief after a long wearying journey in dark and gloomy avenues. Such lofty morale lay at the very basis of creating a new society with integrated components immune to all fluctuations of time, and powerful enough to change the whole course of humanity.