Prophet Muhammad travelled on the back of Al-Buraq all
the way to the farthest Mosque in Jerusalem. He ascended through the seven
heavens and marvelled at wonders unimaginable. He looked into the faces and
exchanged greetings with many of his fellow Prophets, and the final slave and
Messenger of God, Muhammad, stood in the presence of God Himself. On the same
night, only several hours after he had commenced his journey, Prophet Muhammad returned
This miraculous journey was about to become a weapon
against Prophet Muhammad and his followers by his enemies, and equally it would
be an extreme test of faith for the believers. Upon his homecoming, Prophet
Muhammad made his way to Umm Ayman and told her of his miraculous journey. She
responded, “O Messenger of God, do not tell anyone about this.” Umm Ayman had
perfect faith in Prophet Muhammad and believed his account of the journey, but
she was afraid of how others would respond.
Prophet Muhammad described Umm Ayman as “my mother after
my own mother”. She was the faithful servant of his mother Aminah and remained
with Prophet Muhammad through the deaths of his mother and grandfather. Prophet
Muhammad and Umm Ayman had always been very close, and at the completion of
this wondrous journey, he went to Umm Ayman’s home, perhaps for comfort and
ease while he contemplated this miracle, and decided his next move.
Prophet Muhammad responded by saying that he would tell
the people about the wondrous night. He considered it his responsibility
before God to convey the message, no matter the response or consequences; God
was responsible for the outcome. He left the house quietly with sombre
contemplation, and made his way to the Holy Mosque. He met people along the
way, and slowly the news of the night journey spread amongst the people.
Prophet Mohammad was sitting silently in the Mosque, Abu Jahl approached him
and asked casually, “O Muhammad is there anything new?” Known as one of the
greatest enemies of Islam Abu Jahl was responsible for the torture, punishment,
murder and harassment of the new Muslims throughout the early days of Islam. Even
though he was aware of the animosity and hatred Abu Jahl felt towards him,
Prophet Muhammad answered truthfully and said, “This past night I have
travelled to Jerusalem and back.”
Jahl, being unable to contain his amusement, responded by requesting Muhammad to
repeat these words in front of the people of Mecca. Prophet Muhammad responded
in the affirmative, and Abu Jahl left the Mosque running, calling out to the
people as he ran through the streets. When sufficient people had gathered in
the Mosque, at Abu Jahl’s request Prophet Muhammad said, for all to hear, “I
have been to Jerusalem and back.”
crowd of people started to laugh, whistle, and clap. They treated it as a big
joke and fell against one another laughing. This was the response expected by
Abu Jahl and he was thrilled. The disbelievers in the crowd saw a chance to put
an end to Islam. They ridiculed and belittled Prophet Muhammad’s claim. Among
the crowd were people who had travelled to Jerusalem and they asked Prophet
Muhammad to describe what he had seen.
Prophet of God began to describe his journey but he became irritated. He spent
only a brief amount of time in Jerusalem, and the miraculous nature of this
travels had meant that he did not remember small details and descriptions. However,
Prophet Muhammad tells us that God showed him the details “right in front of
his eyes” and he described what he had seen “stone by stone, brick by brick”.
The travellers confirmed his descriptions. (Saheeh Bukhari)
There is another narration that says that
whilst travelling back to Mecca, Prophet Muhammad passed over a caravan. He was
able to describe clearly. The caravan had lost a camel, and Prophet Muhammad
called from the sky telling them the whereabouts of the camel. He also drank
from their water supply.
The people of Mecca immediately dispatched some one to
meet the caravan before it entered the city to ask questions about the previous
night. They confirmed that a strange voice called out the location of the lost
camel and that part of their water supply had disappeared. Still these
confirmations were not enough. The people jeered and laughed and disbelieved
the words of the Prophet of God. This miraculous event was such a test of
faith that even some of the new Muslims disbelieved and turned away from the
faith of Islam.
The Sweetness of Faith
To those whose faith was strong and true, the Power of
God was obvious. Some of those who found the whole story difficult to believe
went to see Abu Bakr, the best friend and loyal supporter of Prophet Mohammad.
They asked him if he believed Prophet Muhammad travelled overnight to Jerusalem, and back to Mecca. Without hesitation Abu Bakr replied, “If the messenger of
God said so, then it is true”. It was because of this occasion that Abu Bakr
earned the title As-Siddeeq (the foremost believer). This was a turning point
for many Muslims; after already facing the physical torture and abuse of the disbelievers,
they now had to grapple with a concept beyond their wildest imaginings. Some
failed, but many soared to new heights and were able to taste the sweetness of true
submission to the One God.
The journey by night, from the Holy Mosque in Mecca to
the farthest Mosque in Jerusalem, and the ascension through the heavens and
into the presence of Almighty God was a miracle granted by God to His final
slave and Prophet, Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, and
one of the greatest of honours bestowed upon any human.