Even When He Spoke The Least He Inspired The Most.

February 10, 2012 at 4:43 pm Leave a comment

On 19th January 2012, The IAS invited Sheikh Adnan Rasheed from the UK to conduct a lecture on the topic; “Even when he spoke the least he inspired the most”.In this session the speaker explained some of the communication skills that we can learn from the exemplary life led by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
In order to understand the communication skills of the Prophet (PBUH) one needs to understand the source of his teachings. The source of his teachings was the Quran which had been revealed to him directly from Allah SWT through Angel Jibraeal (A.S). Another important thing to remember is that Prophet (PBUH) was an unlettered prophet of Allah (SWT) which means that he didn’t know how to read or write. (Here the speaker clarified that it is out of the utmost respect for our beloved Prophet of Allah (PBUH) that we do not refer to his as an uneducated person but call him an unlettered prophet of Allah.) This goes to show that the teachings of the Quran are directly from Allah SWT and are untainted by the thoughts or perceptions of any man. This fact is also evident from the fact that when the revelation came to the Holy Prophet (PBUH) he would verbally recite it to the people. This process of dissemination of Allah’s word didn’t leave any room for mistakes or additions in the message of the Quran.
The next thing that one needs to understand about source of the Prophet’s(PBUH) teachings is to understand that the manner in which the Quran delivers its message to the people: it not only effects Muslims who recite it but it has a very strong effect even on the Non-Muslims too. Here the speaker narrated the incident of one of his friends whose brother was a Non-Muslim and when he heard the recitation of the Quran and it made him weep even though he didn’t understand Arabic. This goes to show that the Quran possesses such strong communication skills in the manner that it communicates with us humans. Once, the nature of the source of the teaching of Prophet (PBUH) is clear, then one can better understand the communication skills that can be learnt from the Sunnah and Seerah of the Prophet (PBUH):
Firstly, Prophet (PBUH) was a good listener. This is indeed a very important communication skill and one that requires a person to listen attentively to the one he is interacting with and at the same time not planning an answer in his head to the other person’s remarks or accusations. When Prophet (PBUH) used to be talking to a person, he would turn his whole body to face him so that the person knew that he was listening to him attentively. When Prophet (PBUH) was listening to a person he did not just listen for the sake of listening but he listened with the depth of his heart and wasn’t busy jumping to conclusions.
Secondly, we learn from the Quran that one needs to communicate in clarity. An example of this is clearly demonstrated in Surah e Ikhlas which is precise yet crystal clear in its message, leaving no room for one to interpret what it means differently. Similarly, we learn from the Sunnah of Prophet(PBUH) that he didn’t talk excessively he would be precise and clear in his message, this made it easy for the people to understand him.
Thirdly, the Prophet(PBUH) would change the tone of his voice according to the situation. When advising someone, his tone would be calm and calculated. When he would be warning the people about something his tone would rise.
Fourthly, when he spoke, he spoke according to the subject that he wanted to address and the tone of his voice would be in accordance to that. Also when interacting with the people we find that he showed empathy towards them rather than being harsh with them and rebuking them he would try to approach the subject in the most sensible manner. He would make it evident to the other person that he understood their short comings and then he would proceed to advice them in an appropriate manner. This can be seen from the example of a man who came to the Prophet(PBUH) and confessed that he could not give up adultery, where upon the Prophet(PBUH) instead of being harsh and unrelenting towards the man, showed him empathy and proceeded to explain to him the grave nature of his actions. He make him reflect on how he would feel if someone came to him and said that he liked to do adultery with his mother and sister.
Lastly, one learns from the example of the Prophet (PBUH) that when he spoke he gave examples to make his case (making hujjah). In this manner he was able to effectively get the message across. This technique is present in the Quran to at many instances where we find the Allah SWT gives examples to build His case as can be seen in Surah Naba, the first Surah of the 30 Juz of the Quran.
These are just a few of the communication skills that we learn from the Beloved Prophet of Allah (PBUH).If we make a conscious effort to try and apply them in our conversations and other forms of interactions with others we can effectively communicate our message across and leave no room for petty arguments and misunderstandings.

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