Pir-o-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan

Infancy and Childhood
The Mystical Life of the Prophet Muhammad
The Life of Muhammad

Pir-o-Murshid Hazrat Inayat Khan


Muhammad's mother found her consolation in the baby; seeing his innocent face she would forget the sorrow she had over the death of her beloved husband. According to the custom of Arabia the child was given in the care of a nurse, Halima, who took him home in the country. He won her affection so much that her whole attention was drawn towards him for she saw his great merits. He was contented with whatever little food was given to him and he was friendly and smiling with whoever came to him. These were his merits in his infancy.


When he grew to be a little child he used to play with the children of the neighbours, and his merit was that he gave them whatever toy he had and never snatched out of the hands of another child the toy it had brought. Halima had a great business to keep things in the house ! When the little boys fought, as they always do, he would separate them, and sometimes he would take the part of the weaker. But at times he showed himself remote to them and to everyone. He would sit alone absorbed in thought and sometimes he threw his body on the ground in absolute repose. Then gradually he would arise so fresh and radiant that his moonlike face beamed forth most brilliantly. Seeing this uncommon occurrence Halima consulted with her husband and both presumed that the child was obsessed by some spirit. Therefore she brought him back to his mother saying, "Lady, thy sweet little child - I am afraid - is obsessed by some spirit". Ameenah answered, "No fear, God forbid him; he is raised beyond the world's obsessions".


In the home of his mother he showed rare traces of his future development. He always agreed with poor children. He warned and threatened his young associates from doing wrong and induced them to obey their parents. He sympathized with the miseries of every child of his age, and was always the leader among his playmates. He became a magnet to old and young alike and grew to be more interesting each day.


At the age of six years his mother took him to Mecca, and after a short visit, while returning home, Ameena passed away to the deep grief of the child's tender heart. So he was deprived not only of a father's care but also of the care of a mother so essential for a child. Muhammad was left to the care of his grandfather who, being aged and ill, watched over him from his sickbed with a very great attention, for with his age and experience he understood that this was a remarkable child. Soon his grandfather also died, and he was left quite an orphan in this wide world. It seems as though Allah envies anyone taking care of His chosen ones - save Himself alone.


Muhammad was then left in the guardianship of his uncle Abu Talib who took charge of him and brought him up taking as much care of him as of his own children. At that time there were no schools or universities; the boys were sent out into the jungle with the cattle, the sheep and goats. One day when Muhammad was sent to guard his uncle's sheep and goats, another boy said to him, "Mind my goats and sheep for me while I go to town and enjoy myself, and then I will mind your sheep and goats and you shall go to town and enjoy yourself". Muhammad said, "I will mind your sheep and goats, but I will not leave mine, because these are entrusted to me". This little incident shows how in everyday life Muhammad's steadfastness was prepared within him. It first manifested in a lesser degree and later grew so much that he was entrusted by Allah with the charge of humanity - which also he did not neglect amidst the temptation of this bewildering world.


His uncle was in the habit of making once a year a journey to Sham for the purpose of selling his merchandise. Before leaving he entrusted his own children and Muhammad to his family, giving them instructions to pay great attention especially to Muhammad, both because he had a great love for him and because he thought that, as Muhammad was an orphan, it was God's command that special care should be taken of him. But when the time came to say goodbye, Muhammad clung to his uncle's neck saying, "I will go with you. I cannot stay here without you". It was a difficult journey and to take a young boy like Muhammad meant a great trouble, but his uncle could not refuse him, and he took him with him.


During their journey Muhammad showed much attention to his uncle helping him in every way, and the child's company brought him good luck. When they returned home an Arab met them who was a seer. He warned Abu Talib to take good care of the child, as he saw a great future awaiting him. He said, "This child will be the up-raiser not only of his community, but of the whole humanity".




Retour au texte en français


Présentation La Musique du Message Accueil Textes et Conférences Lexique