Shouting the Truth and the Polytheists’ Reaction

Article translated to : العربية

the prophet’s voice kept reverberating in makkah until the following verse was revealed:

"therefore proclaim openly (allâh’s message — islamic monotheism), that which you are commanded, and turn away from al-mushrikûn (polytheists)." [al-qur'an 15:94]

he then commenced discrediting the superstitious practices of idolatry, revealing its worthless reality and utter impotence, and giving concrete proofs that idolatry per se or taking it as the media through which an idolater could come in contact with allâh, is manifest falsehood.

the makkans, on their part, burst into outrage and disapproval. muhammad’s [pbuh] words created a thunderbolt that turned the makkan time-honoured ideological life upside down. they could ill afford to hear someone attaching to polytheists and idolaters, the description of straying people. they started to rally their resources to settle down the affair, quell the onward marching revolution and deal a pre-emptive strike to its votaries before it devours and crushes down their consecrated traditions and long standing heritage. the makkans had the deep conviction that denying godship to anyone save allâh and that belief in the divine message and the hereafter are interpreted in terms of complete compliance and absolute commitment, and this in turn leaves no area at all for them to claim authority over themselves and over their wealth, let alone their subordinates. in short, their arrogated religiously-based supremacy and highhandedness would no longer be in effect; their pleasures would be subordinated to the pleasures of allâh and his messenger and lastly they would have to abstain from incurring injustices on those whom they falsely deemed to be weak, and perpetrating dreadful sins in their everyday life. they had already been fully aware of these meanings, that is why their souls would not condescend to accept this ‘disgraceful’ position not out of motives based on dignity and honour but rather because:

"nay! (man denies resurrection and reckoning. so) he desires to continue committing sins." [al-qur'an 75:5]

they had been aware of all these consequences but they could afford to do nothing before an honest truthful man who was the highest example of good manners and human values. they had never known such an example in the history of their folks or grandfathers. what would they do? they were baffled, and they had the right to be so.

following careful deliberations, they hit upon the only target available, i.e. to contact the messenger’s uncle, abu talib and request him to intervene and advise his nephew to stop his activities. in order to attach a serious and earnest stamp to their demand, they chose to touch the most sensitive area in arabian life, viz., ancestral pride. they addressed abu talib in the following manner: "o abu talib! your nephew curses our gods; finds faults with our way of life, mocks at our religion and degrades our forefathers; either you must stop him, or you must let us get at him. for you are in the same opposition as we are in opposition to him; and we will rid you of him." abu talib tried to appease their wrath by giving them a polite reply. the prophet [pbuh] , however, continued on his way preaching allâh’s religion and calling men hitherto, heedless of all their desperate attempts and malicious intentions. [ibn hisham 1/265]

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