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Muhammad: A True Prophet?

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Essay title: Muhammad: A True Prophet?

To have one single man claim that he is the messenger of God centuries ago and still have his word believed in present day is quite powerful. There are approximately 1.3 billion Muslims in the world today which means that one out of every five people believes Muhammad was, indeed, the messenger of God.

Muhammad, much like other so-called religious “messengers of God,” can either be seen as a legendary figure or a raving lunatic. In today’s society, if one were to make the claims of having revelations from God, they would be classified as insane.

Travel to any large city in the world and you will see dozens of curbside prophets claiming that they’re communicating directly with God and that they are the singular voice the people should listen to and follow. In this essay I will discuss whether or not Muhammad was truly the “messenger of God” or did he merely create his revelations from some mental illness.

First, many may argue why would God wait so late in Muhammad’s life to start his communications with him? Jesus, who Christians believe to be the son of God, preached his messages from the very start. If God wanted Muhammad to lead so many to follow him, why would he wait until the later years of life? Many may argue that it takes a great deal of time to realize who your one true self is and that it is life experiences that mold us into the people we are destined to be. Muhammad, from the beginning, seemed to have a deep compassion for others. In one case before he took his title as “messenger of God” he gained a great deal of respect from people through resolving a conflict. However, looking at said conflict, I search to find where the resolution and use of knowledge comes into play.

The situation took place while Muhammad was repairing the Ka�bah, various clans of the Quraysh argued over who would have the privilege of placing the Black Stone in its place. As violence was about to erupt, the people chose to call on Muhammad and make him the mediator between the two parties. He placed the Black Stone on his cloak and asked all the clan chiefs to hold its edges and raise it, and then he placed the Black Stone in its appointed spot with his own hands. This is where I find myself searching; how did this solve the conflict?

It seems that anyone could walk into this situation and select this option. Two people are arguing, so you do whatever the task is yourself. Problem solved. But does that truly give you the respect of the people?

There are many more criticisms that are brought upon the life that Muhammad led. As written in Goldschmidt, two major things brought up by non-Muslims against Muhammad are his lust for women and his treatment of the Jews. Goldschmidt writes, “If we raise these issues now, are we not judging a seventh-century Arab by the standards of our own time and place? Is this fair?” True, it may seem unfair but bringing to mind the two issues at hand and the way that Muhammad behaved within them, period of time really does not seem to play a strong role in judgment.

Focusing in on solely one of the two criticisms, Muhammad clearly had a great lust for women. Back then, the Quran said that Muslim men could marry as many as four wives but Muhammad is believed to have as many as ten. Because he was the “messenger of God” does that put him above the law of the Quran? One would think not, no matter if it was then or if it was now. Also, the Muslim religion looks at divorce as a last resort in a marriage. The meeting of Muhammad and one of his wives, Zaynab, brought on a sudden revelation to a change in the Quran that allowed Zaynab to divorce her current husband and be with Muhammad. The whole turn of events makes one wonder whether the revelation actually happened or was Muhammad playing the “messenger of God” card to his own advantage?

One of his many wives, Aisha, is one of the most well known; in my opinion she would also be the one that could raise the most questions. Muhammad met her in his mid-forties and she was nine. In any

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