Friday, October 29, 2010

Book Review of Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum (The Sealed Nectar)

Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum
(The Sealed Nectar)
Biography of the noble Prophet (PBUH)
By Safi-ur-Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri
Islamic University Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah
503 Pages
Published by Darussalam Publishers

Name: Safi-ur-Rehman
Kunniyat: Abu Hisham
Lineage: Safiur Rehman bin Abdullah bin Muhammad Akbar bin Muhmmad Ali bin Abdul Mumin bin Faqirullah Mubarakpun, Azami.

Safi-ur-rehman was born in the middle of year 1942, in Husainabad, a village, one mile for in the north side of Mubarakpur (District Azamgarh), a town famous for home industry in the northern province of India.

In June 1954 was admitted to Madarsa Ehyaul Uloom, where he pursued studies in Islamic studies and Arabic literature. Two years later he joined Madrsa Faid Aam, in the Maunath Bhanjan district Azamgarh for higher education from where he received his Fadilat degree five years later. On completion of his seven years studies in Islamic courses he received Fadilat degree from the same institute in Shaban 1380 H. He also received the certificates of Maulvi in 1959 and Alim in 1960 from government education board on passing their examinations with high grade.

After completion of his studies in Madasra “Faid-e-Aam” in the year 1961, He began teaching, preaching, lecturing and delivering sermons. But the unfavorable circumstances could not permit him to stay along in one place. In March, 1963, he joined Madrasa “Faid-e-Aam” Maunath Bhanjan as a teacher then he transferred to Madrasa “Darul-Hadeeth” in the same city in 1966.
In January 1969, He was appointed a principal in Madrads “Faidul-Uloom” at Seoni. In 1972, he was requested to serve in the institute “Madrasa Arabia Dar-ut-Taleem as principal. After spending two years he was invited by Jamiah Salafiah Banaras to join as teacher (Ustad). After changes in the system of Arabic schools, he participated in Fadil degree examination under the government education board, consequently passed double Fadil examinations in 1976 and 1978 with high grade.
From 1988 until his death he worked as a scholar at a research institute known as “The center for the services of the Prophet’s biography” at the Islamic university of Madinah. He passed away in Riyadh, 2006, after having suffered a stroke in the previous year. He is popularly known for his award winning work on the Seerah of the messenger of Allah entitled Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum (The Sealed Nectar) published by Darussalam and his supervision of translation and abridgement Tafsir Ibn Cathie (full 10 Vol HB set)-Darussalam. He was known for his defense of the Sunnah and warning against innovations and those who propagate it.
When the monthly Urdu magazine of Jamiah Salfiyah “Muhaddith” was published in 1980, He was appointed as Chief Editor of the magazine section up to September, 1988 until he joined Islamic university at Al-Madinah Al-Munawwarah. During that period he wrote number of essays on Social, Historical, Political and Religious topics which were appreciated by the people.

Book Review
Prize winner book:
Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum, a complete authoritative book on the life of the Prophet (PBUH) which was honored by the World Muslim League as first prize winner. This book was awarded First Prize by the Muslim World League at the worldwide competition on the biography of the Prophet (PBUH) held at Makkah Al-Mukarramah 1399 H/1979.One hundred and seventy-one manuscripts were received from all over the world. Out of these, eighty-five were in the Arabic language, sixty-four in Urdu, twenty-one were in English and one in French and Hausa. It is the new revised edition with many changes and additions.

Main objective:
Many books have been written about the life of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). In writing this book, the author had a specific objective. To highlight the exalted states of the Prophet (PBUH) and to bring in the efforts made by him in the propagation of the Divine Message – the religion truth, and the hardships he endured in the preaching of this religion, especially at that time which was perhaps most unsuitable socially and intellectually for the message of truth, Safi-ur-Rahman Mubarakpuri has presented this book. Moreover, it teaches Muslims about the rise of Islam, and how the Prophet (PBUH) was chosen by Allah to receive divine revelation. Muslims also learn of the hardships the Prophet and his companions faced, and how they eventually succeeded with Allah’s help. Its objective is to nurture faith, purify characters and fan the struggle to embrace the truth and be faithful to it.

Literature review:
This book explains the life of Prophet (PBUH) in the light of Authentic Ahadith and Qur’an. The facts about the life of the prophet (PBUH) have been collected from Qur’an, authentic Ahadith from Saheeh Bukhari, Saheeh Muslim, Tirmizi and other authoritative and reliable sources so as to compile the book on factual basis with any distortions.

Detail of contents:
Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum tells us about location and nature of Arab Tribes ruler ship and prince ship among the Arabs religions of the Arabs, in its beginning. And describe the different aspect of pre-Islamic Arabian society. This book a biography goes into the detail of the lineage of the Prophet (PBUH) his message, his jihad and his social interaction. Then discuss the lineage, family, early life of Muhammad and the forty years prior Prophet Hood after that the different phases and stages of call. He discusses the every aspect of every phases and stages. Then discuss the military activities in a detail manner. And it includes many detail and goes through the journey from his birth, to spreading Islam in Makkah to him migrating to Yathrib and his until he dies. This book has a description of the Battles of Badr, ‘Uhad, al Ahzab, Banu Quraizah, Al-Muraisi,Khaibar, Mu’tah, Conquest of Makkah, Hunain and Tabuk all of the Prophet’s battle occurred after the Hijrah, within a span of ten years. The Prophet (PBUH) had to fight in many of these battles. In the first half detail about Makkan period and in the second half describe the life of Muhammad in Madina in a very detail manner and at the end of the book the last expedition and the Prophet (PBUH) attributes and manners.         

Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum is in Arabic that is translated in Urdu and English. The translation editing has been done by professional people having an experience of presenting many books on the religions topics.
Writing style:
This book is one of the best from short books on seerah of our beloved Prophet (PBUH). It includes a comprehensive seerah about the life of Prophet (PBUH). In this book, Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum shows us how the prophet’s approach was gentle, yet determined and clear-cut, with on compromise on basic issues. He described the life of Prophet (PBUH) to go onto depth about the Prophet (PBUH) many historians only touched on the various aspects of his life. This book goes into detail and provides reason and explanations for whatever took place. It is a blend modern analysis and ancient detail. In this book, he draws his own experience in the field and combines it with his knowledge of the seerah. He takes the most important events of the seerah, summarizes them in order to offer a brief overview, then outlines the lessons to be learnt from these events. The author has collected all the material from authentic sources, which have been mentioned throe footnotes.

Author view about book:
The biography of the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is a very noble and exalted subject by which Muslims learn about the rise of Islam, and how prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was chosen by Allah to receive the divine revelation. This biography of the prophet (PBUH) truly opened man’s mind about the challenges that He and His family faced in their efforts to spread the message of Islam to the Arab nation. The life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is a road map for travelers on the path of life. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was a mercy to all living things and a Warner of perilous time to come. Today, Muslims, more then any other people, are in need of a guide to the practical application of Islamic traditions. This set of lectures is the first of a series intended to bring to the student of Islamic knowledge and the average listener the life of the last Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Muslims, who study the Prophet’s life, learn much more from it then the story of one man’s life.

 They discover how Allah prepared the Prophet for his mission; how Allah revealed the Qur’an to the Prophet; how the teachings of Islam fortified the hearts of early Muslims; how a small band of faithful Muslims defeated Arabia’s fiercest warriors; and how the truth of Islam triumphed over falsehood and its many devotees. The Prophet’s biography thus helps Muslims better understand their religion. For this reason, scholars from the time of the Prophet (PBUH) to the present have been very careful about determining the authenticity of the sources of the Prophet’s biography.

However, not all biographers have made use of the available research. Many have mitten distorted accounts of the Prophet’s life, adding whatever appealed to them regardless of its accuracy or authenticity. Consequently, there are many written accounts of the Prophet’s life that contain information contrary to the teachings of Islam.
Naisra Mehmood.

  • Al-Mubarakpuri, Safi-ur-Rahman, Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum (Lahore, Darussalam Publishers, 1995)


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