I would like to extend my most heartfelt congratulations and felicitations on these days of the Milad of the best servant of Almighty Allah (SWT), His best of creation and most beloved leader of Prophets (a.s). He is our beloved Prophet Muhamad (SAWA), the secret to this world. There is nothing that we can imagine to be better than him, nor is there anything on a status near to him, after Almighty Allah (SWT) Himself.

History has recorded various dates for the blessed birth of Prophet Muhammad (SAWA), but everybody agrees that it occurred in the first year after of Aamul Fil. This was the year when Abraha led the “people of the elephant” in their attack on Mecca. Furthermore, there is consensus that this sacred birth occurred on one of the days in Rabi-ul-Awwal. However, there is a difference of opinion in as far as the particular date in Rabi-ul-Awwal.

The majority of our Sunni brothers believe that it occurred on 12th Rabi-ul-Awwal, but there are opinions that it may have occurred on 7th or 9th of Rabi-ul-Awwal. On the other hand, the majority of Shia believe it occurred on a Friday, 17th Rabi-ul-Awwal, which in fact coincides with a day like today. Therefore, it is indeed one of the greatest days to celebrate and realize the best favour of Almighty Allah (SWT) bestowed upon us on a day like this.


Naturally, when we speak about the Milad and birth of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA), especially from the viewpoint of the Ahlul Bait (a.s), we celebrate the arrival of his physical existence in this world on 17th Rabi-ul-Awwal in the city of Mecca, in the year referred to as Aamul Fil. However, the sacred truth and reality of our Nabi & Rasul (SAWA) is not confined to the 17th Rabi-ul-Awwal. In fact, he says in a Hadith that he was already a Nabi before Adam (a.s) was created. 

Verse 56 of Surah Ahzaab (chapter 33 of the Holy Quran) is about the Salawaat on our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA):

إِنَّ اللَّهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّونَ عَلَى النَّبِيِّ ۚ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ وَسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا

“Surely Allah and His angels bless the Prophet; O you who believe! call for (Divine) blessings on him and salute him with a (becoming) salutation.”

Some scholars interpret this Salawaat that Rasulullah (SAWA) receives, as being a continuous action. This point about continuation is very important, because when we talk about continuation in the context of Allah (SWT) and His angels (as referred to in the below verse), then that is beyond past, present and future tense or the limitations of time. 

Furthermore, the word “annabi” is used ie. not Muhammad! You will recall I mentioned a moment ago, that Rasulullah (SAWA) said that he was a Prophet even before the creation of Adam (a.s). So, this Salawaat on our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) is an Ibadah which continues indefinitely! It is eternal, that the whole world, including Almighty Allah (SWT) makes Salawaat on our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA).

This Salawaat is Ibadah. However, Ibadah is performed for the pleasure of Almighty Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) is worshipped, not worshipping. Now, this Ibadah of Salawaat is therefore amazing, because Almighty Allah (SWT) is with us, together with His angels and all His other Prophets (a.s). In fact, the whole universe of existence is with us in calling out for the blessings of Almighty Allah (SWT) to be upon Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) and his purified Ahlul Bait (a.s).


The sacred birth of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) on a day like this is only one phase of his existence, and not all the phases. In Usul al-Kafi, the first Hadith talks about Aql (intellect) being the first thing which Almighty Allah (SWT) created. The Imams of Ahlul Bait (a.s) were usually asked what this means, that the first thing which Almighty Allah (SWT) created was Aql (intellect), before everything else. The response provided was that Aql means understanding the very existence, truth and reality of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA).

This is the first creation, and according to some mystics who are on the deep spiritual wavelength, Hakikat-e-Muhammadia, or the Muhammadean fact, is not only about understanding that our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) is the first creation of Almighty Allah (SWT). In fact, they take it further to say that he is the last creation too. In fact, they say that it is the ONLY creation, and whatever we see in this world is basically a reflection of THIS one creation!

The Muhammadean fact and reality is therefore the first and last of creation. In a Hadith al-Qudsi, Almighty Allah (SWT) says that if He did not create our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA), then He would not have created this universe! It is all created for Rasulullah (SAWA), and in the shadow of his light!


According to the teaching of the Ahlul Bait (a.s), we are supposed to make lots of dua on this sacred birthday of Rasulullah (SAWA). Ghusl and fasting is also recommended for this day, together with celebrating this special day with good food and wearing your best clothing. 

Then, there is also a special Ziyarat recorded from the Imams of Ahlul Bait (a.s) for this special day. I would like to draw your attention to one of the sentences, which reads as follows:

“Assalaamu ala awwalin nabiyyi meethaaqan, wa akhirin nabiyyi mab’atha”

This is the description from the Ahlul Bait (a.s) of Rasulullah (SAWA). They know how to define and praise him. 

You see, even if I were to ask the youngest child in this congregation, who was the first Prophet, he will very confidently answer that it was Nabi Adam (a.s). Similarly, this same child will very confidently answer that our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) is the final divine Prophet. 

However, in this Ziyarat of Rasulullah (SAWA) taught to us by our 6th Imam of the Ahlul Bait (a.s), Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s) explains that there is an order which you people know, whereby Nabi Adam (a.s) is listed as the first divine Prophet of Allah (SWT), and our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) is the final Prophet. 

Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s) then explains that there is another order/sequence, which is beyond this material world. In that world, the first Prophet from the point of view of pledge is Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) and not Nabi Adam (a.s). This is what the following citation from the Ziyarat of Rasulullah (SAWA) means, as relayed by the Ahlul Bait (a.s):

“Assalaamu ala awwalin nabiyyi meethaaqan, wa akhirin nabiyyi mab’atha”

Peace and blessings on the first Prophet from the aspect of the covenant, who arrived in this world as the final Prophet!


Almighty Allah (SWT) reminds us of a pledge in Surah Yaseen and several other Surahs of the Holy Quran. An example is verse 60 of Surah Yaseen (chapter 36) where Almighty Allah (SWT) will challenge us on the Day of Judgement about the pledge He took from us:

أَلَمْ أَعْهَدْ إِلَيْكُمْ يَا بَنِي آدَمَ أَنْ لَا تَعْبُدُوا الشَّيْطَانَ ۖ إِنَّهُ لَكُمْ عَدُوٌّ مُبِينٌ

“Did I not charge you, O children of Adam, that you should not serve the Shaitan? Surely he is your open enemy.”

Now, this verse makes us wonder when did Almighty Allah (SWT) take a pledge from us? Can we remember when did Almighty Allah (SWT) ask us to sign a document declaring that we will not worship any other than Him alone? Indeed, there is a pledge involved, but we all forget about it. This pledge is in our nature. The covenant is there, that we will not worship any other than Almighty Allah (SWT). 

That very first pledge was taken when all the souls of human beings were created, that they will not worship any other than Allah (SWT). Part of this original pledge was that they will surrender to the Prophethood of our Nabi & Rasul (SAWA). This means that even Nabi Adam (a.s) made this pledge, together with all other divine Prophets (a.s). They all pledged to worship none other than Allah (SWT) and they also pledged to the Nubuwwat of our Nabi & Rasul (SAWA).  

“Assalaamu ala awwalin nabiyyi meethaaqan, wa akhirin nabiyyi mab’atha”

Peace and blessings on the first Prophet from the aspect of the covenant, who arrived in this world as the final Prophet!

He was the first to make the pledge, and the last to arrive in this world to present his divine message. This order is therefore something else, as the first is Muhammad (SAWA) and the last is also Muhammad (SAWA). There is nothing other than this Muhammadean reality and blessings!


Last week we started a discussion about the month of Rabi-ul-Awwal, specifically about one of the greatest Sunnah of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA), known as the Hijra (migration). Since today is the actual birthday of Rasulullah (SAWA), I decided to dedicate today’s khutbah to the reality of his sacred birth. 

There is lots to discuss on this Ziyarat of Rasulullah (SAWA) as narrated by Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s). This same Ziyarat discusses what transpired during his sacred appearance in this world, when he was born in Mecca. Today we discussed the phase before this, namely being the first to take the pledge, and there is a phase even after his departure from this world, but the phase of his appearance in this world removed the veils of ignorance and oppression and enlightened this world.

Certain phenomena occurred upon his sacred birth, such as certain rivers drying up, the walls of certain palaces collapsed, and certain empires were shaken at this blessed time. 

In conclusion, Mubarak to you and all who follow this path and trend of Rasulullah (SAWA) on his sacred birthday. May Almighty Allah (SWT) grant us the Taufeeq to be amongst the genuine nation of the followers of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA).

We will continue next week with the discussion about his Hijra.


Once again, brothers and sisters, I remind myself and all of you to observe Taqwa of Almighty Allah (SWT) on this precious, celebratory day of the Milad of Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) as well as his grandson, Imam Jafar Sadiq (a.s), who basically reviewed his message in a structured, academic format and established it in a scholastic manner so that he would be the teacher of all other A’imma on Fiqh.


Muhammad Ali Essop, fondly known as Panjbhai, was one of our senior fathers in the Durban community who, without any shadow of doubt, played a key role in the establishment of the community in Durban and stood firmly defending Islam and the school of Ahlul Bait (a.s). 

What a gentle soul! Truly a great man with a humble attitude towards life filled with impeccable akhlaq and great love for our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) and his Ahlul Bait (a.s).

As we all know, he was the one who sacrificed his son in the Durban Mosque tragedy 18 months ago, when the group of terrorists and murderers attacked the Masjid and tried to burn it down. His son, a young man by the name of Abbas, resisted and stood firmly in the face of these cowards and they slaughtered him in the mosque, and he was martyred as a result. Panjbhai was the father of this great Shaheed, who gave his life by defending the house of Almighty Allah (SWT) and defending the name of Imam Hussain (a.s).

We make dua to Almighty Allah (SWT) to shower His infinite mercy upon his soul and may Almighty Allah (SWT) forgive his shortcomings and accept him amongst His awliya (friends) Insha Allah.


Another very important point connected to the celebrations of the Milad and birth of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAWA) is that this week is celebrated as Unity Week. Again, this is a detailed topic for discussion, but there is absolutely no doubt today about the necessity, significance and importance of this issue, namely Muslim Unity.

Unity is the only door for this Ummah (Muslim nation) of Rasulullah (SAWA) to be rescued, if we can rise above our differences. Examples are in front of us. In our own country, I mentioned a moment ago about the Durban Mosque tragedy, which resulted in the loss of life of a young man, and his children becoming orphaned and his wife widowed. 

This campaign of hate, disunity and division is one of the most serious challenges which our Ummah is facing. 

Today, when we analyze the situation in Iraq, we see how the occupation forces and enemies of Islam fought with this nation. This nation with amazing history of civilizations and great spirit of sacrifice was divided by the foreign forces. First, they divided Iraq before the fall of Saddam, based upon Kurds and Arabs. 

After the fall of Saddam, they came to the support of Sunnis and sensitized them with shock tactics that the Shia of Iraq are going to take over, which means they have no future. Years and years of suffering and fights between Sunni and Shia in Iraq – a country which has no history of Sunni-Shia conflict. This is a country where Sunni and Shia marriages were a common practice. 

These enemies of Islam created these divides and put people against each other, based upon ethnicity or sectarianism. This recent episode is again proof of this reality, where a genuine outcry from the people of Iraq for justice and reform has been hijacked by the enemies of Islam wanting to divert this peaceful and crucial outcry from the people of Iraq into an internal fight once again. 

They now want to create a fight between Shia and Shia. It is no longer about Sunni versus Shia, nor Arab versus Kurd. Therefore, I am saying that this strategy of dividing us does not stop. We should not think that their tactics stop at dividing us between Sunni and Shia. Indeed, it continues!

Today, such a great effort has been placed to exploit these public demands and public outcry in Iraq, to divert the attention to a Shia versus Shia fight. They are trying to divide us between Shia who support Iran and Shia who does not support Iran, etc. It never stops!

So, after all this, who can be the most ideal shelter and refuge for us, other than the personality of Rasulullah (SAWA), to bring us together? Alhamdu Lillah, today in Iraq, despite all these challenges, we have the supreme religious authority who insist on the unity of Iraq. They are not ready to compromise unity of the Ummah on any price. Unity of the ummah is the main priority.

Now, this priority ascribed by the grand religious authority of Ayatollah Sistani is keeping this society together. Unity is undoubtedly the most crucial issue facing this Ummah.


Also, we cannot forget to mention the very horrible situation in Gaza, where our brethren are being killed by Israeli aggression. We have seen images and reports in the media about the massacre taking place there. Again, there is one important point I would like to make here. There is a very shrewd approach to this whole episode of aggression and attacks on Gaza, whereby even the revolutionary forces are being divided.

This episode started with the attack on the great commander of Islamic Jihad, Baha Abu al-Ata. In Palestine, there are 2 major resistance forces, namely Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Abu al-Ata was assassinated along with his wife, which provoked a reaction. 

Now, besides this point, what the Zionist Israeli regime wanted to achieve through their statements and indirect messages to the people of Palestine, is that Hamas is not that much of a problem, and they cannot be responsible for all resistance activity against Israel. They are saying that Islamic Jihad presents a more serious problem.

Of course, Islamic Jihad and Hamas have 2 different approaches, but they work together at the same time. However, through the statements from Israel, they enter the fray by creating a divide, and putting one against the other from within. 

We hope and pray that may Almighty Allah (SWT) grant this Ummah a clear vision to understand and realize our obligation and responsibility when it comes to the unity of the Ummah of Rasulullah (SAWA).