Compare the writings from the pens of refined open-minded mature authors with the drawings from the pencils of uncouth bigoted childish cartoonists!
1. John William Draper, (d. 1882), American scientist, philosopher and historian, wrote,
“Four years after the death of Justinian, A.D. 569, was born at Mecca, in Arabia the man who, of all men, exercised the greatest influence upon the human race… Mohammed.”
A History of the Intellectual Development of Europe, 1875, vol.1, p. 329.
2. Montgomery Watt, (d. 2006), Professor (Emeritus) of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Edinburgh, wrote,
“His readiness to undergo persecutions for his beliefs, the high moral character of the men who believed in him and looked up to him as leader, and the greatness of his ultimate achievement – all argue his fundamental integrity. To suppose Muhammad an imposter raises more problems than it solves. Moreover, none of the great figures of history is so poorly appreciated in the West as Muhammad.”
Mohammad At Mecca, Oxford, 1953, p. 52.
3. Washington Irving, (1783-1859), American author and diplomat, wrote,
“He was sober and abstemious in diet, and a rigorous observer of fasts. He indulged in no magnificence of apparel, the ostentation of a petty mind; neither was his simplicity in dress affected, but the result of a real disregard to distinction from so trivial a source…In his private dealings he was just. He treated friends and strangers, the rich and the poor, the powerful and the weak, with equity, and was beloved by the common people for the affability with which he received them, and listened to their complaints… His military triumphs awakened no pride nor vain glory, as they would have done had they been effected for selfish purposes. In the time of his greatest power he maintained the same simplicity of manners and appearance as in the days of his adversity. So far from affecting regal state, he was displeased if, on entering a room, any unusual testimonial of respect were shown to him.”
Life of Mahomet, London, (1889), pp. 192-3, 199.
4. Alphonse de Lamartine, (d. 1869), French poet and statesman, wrote,
“If greatness of purpose, smallness of means, and astounding results are the three criteria of human genius, who could dare to compare any great man in modern history with Muhammad?”
Histoire de la Turquie, Paris 1854, Vol II, p. 277.
5. Annie Besant, (d. 1933), British socialist, wrote,
“It is impossible for anyone who studies the life and character of the great Prophet of Arabia, who knows how he taught and how he lived, to feel anything but reverence for that mighty Prophet, one of the great messengers of the Supreme. And although in what I put to you I shall say many things which may be familiar to many, yet I myself feel whenever I re-read them, a new way of admiration, a new sense of reverence for that mighty Arabian teacher.”
The Life and Teachings of Muhammad, Madras 1932, p.4.
6. Edward Gibbon, (d. 1794), the famous British historian, wrote,
“The greatest success of Mohammad’s life was effected by sheer moral force without the stroke of a sword.”
History of the Saracen Empire, London, 1870.
7. David George Hogarth, (d. 1927), English archaeologist, author, and keeper of the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford (from 1909 to 1927), wrote,
“Serious or trivial, his daily behaviour has instituted a canon which millions observe this day with conscious mimicry. No one regarded as Perfect man has been imitated so minutely.”
Arabia, Oxford, 1922, p. 52.
8. Thomas Carlyle, (d. 1881), British historian, essayist, translator, wrote,
“Our current hypothesis about Mahomet, that he was a scheming Imposter, a Falsehood incarnate, that his religion is a mere mass of quackery and fatuity, beings really to be now untenable to any one. The lies, which well-meaning zeal has heaped round this man, are disgraceful to ourselves only.”
On Heroes, Hero-worship and the Heroic in History, 1841, LECTURE II. THE HERO AS PROPHET. MAHOMET: ISLAM, p. 19.
9. Reginald Bosworth Smith, (d. 1908), Schoolmaster and author, wrote,
“If ever a man ruled by a right divine, it was Muhammad, for he had all the powers without their supports. He cared not for the dressings of power. The simplicity of his private life was in keeping with his public life.”
‘Muhammad and Muhammadanism,’ London, 1874.
10. Arthur Glyn Leonard, (d. 1909?), soldier, ethnographer, wrote,
“But it was the genius of Mohammed, the spirit he breathed into them through the soul of Islam, that exalted them. That raised them out of the lethargy and low level of tribal stagnation, up to the high water mark of national unity and Empire.”
Islam: her moral and spiritual value, 1909, CHAPTER VII MOSLEM MORALITY AND CHRISTENDOM’S ATTITUDE TOWARDS ISLAM, p. 123.
11. James A. Michener, (d. 1997), American author, wrote,
“By the force of his extraordinary personality, Muhammad revolutionalized life in Arabia and throughout the the East. With his own hands he smashed the ancient idols and established a religion dedicated to one God. He lifted women from the bondage in which desert custom held them and preached general social justice1.
Muslims think it particularly ironic when Muhammad is charged by Western writers with having established a voluptuous religion. Among drunkards he abolished alcohol, so that even today all good Muslims are prohibitionists. Among the lazy he ordained individual ritual prayers fives times a day. In a nation that reveled in feasting he instituted a most rigorous daytime fast lasting a full month each year.
Western critics have based their charges of voluptuousness mainly on the question of women. Before Muhammad, however, men were encouraged to take innumerable wives; he limited them to four only, and the Koran is explicit that husbands who are unable to maintain strict equality between two or more wives must confine themselves to one.”
Islam: The Misunderstood Religion, Reader’s Digest, May 1955, p. 69.
12. Stanley Lane-Poole, (d. 1931), British orientalist and archaeologist, wrote,
“Surely the character of Mohammad has been misjudged. He was not the ambitious schemer some would have him, still less the hypocrite and sham prophet others have imagined. He was an enthusiast in that noblest sense when enthusiasm becomes the salt of the earth, the one thing that keeps men from rotting whilst they live. Enthusiasm is often used despite fully, because it is joined to an unworthy cause, or falls upon barren ground and bears no fruit. So was it not with Mohammad. He was an enthusiast when enthusiasm was the one thing needed to set the world aflame, and his enthusiasm was noble for a noble cause. He was one of those happy few who have attained the supreme joy of making one great truth their very life-spring. He was the messenger of the One God, and never to his life’s end did he forget who he was, or the message which was the marrow of his being. He brought his tidings to his people with a grand dignity, sprung from the consciousness of his high office, together with a most sweet humility, whose roots lay in the knowledge of his own weakness.”
Studies in a mosque, 1893, pp. 84-85.
1. The Prophet Muhammad (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) preached Tawheed (Islamic Monotheism) – the greatest justice – and warned against Shirk – the greatest injustice – as this is a crime against the Creator, Allah. This was the basis of his call and message which was the same as all the Prophets and Messengers that preceded him (may peace be upon them). He did not call to revolutions or the likes which some groups do.