Distinctive Characteristics of Muhammad’s Message

Abdou Filali-Ansary and Sikeena Karmali Ahmed

in Islam

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print September 2009 | ISBN: 9780748639670
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748653188 | DOI:
Distinctive Characteristics of Muhammad’s Message

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This chapter focuses on Muhammad, with particular emphasis on his prophecy. Revelation was the source of Muhammad's knowledge and prophecy. This is an exceptional state in which consciousness is lost, human capacities are suspended, and the hidden depths of the unconscious are manifested. It is in this state that the Prophet cannot resist or govern his own will, but rather conforms to what the divine dictates. In a sense, Muhammad was not expressing his ideas but communicating the message of God. While Muhammad's prophecy is central to Islam and Muslims, the Qur'an does not consider that the message of Muhammad abrogated or invalidated previous messages, but that that it authenticated them, enjoying a type of supremacy over them, although supremacy does not mean abrogation. In this way it becomes apparent that the new message of Muhammad was a prolongation of previous monotheist messages, necessarily including elements from the culture of first/seventh century Mecca, as well as from Hejaz, the Arabian Peninsula, and the wider Middle East.

Keywords: Muhammad; prophecy; Revelation; message; Muhammad's prophecy

Chapter.  3664 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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