Sayyidi Habib `Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him) tells us how to attain closeness to the Messenger of Allah ﷺ. Extracts from a lesson in Dar al- Mustafa on 8th Ramadan 1432 / 8th August 2011.
We have to always remember and remind each other that our closeness to the Messenger of Allah ﷺ in the next life is according to the level of our character. He said ﷺ: “The most beloved of you to me and the closest of you to me on the Day of Judgement are the best of you in character.”1 Only the one who possesses noble character is fit to be in the presence of the Possessor of Awesome Character ﷺ.
نَبِيٌّ عَظِيْمٌ خُلْقُهُ الخُلُقُ الَّذِي
لَهُ عَظَّمَ الرَّحمنُ فِيْ سَيِّدِ الكُتْبِ
“An awesome Prophet, whose character the Most Compassionate has venerated in the Master of all Books”2
Good character is inextricably linked to knowledge and to one’s connection to the Messenger of Allah. This link dictates that the one who possesses noble character bestows abundant prayers upon the Messenger of Allah ﷺ. Look at the relationship between these three hadiths:
“The most beloved of you to me and the closest of you to me on the Day of Judgement are the best of you in character.”
“The closest people to me on the Day of Judgement are the ones who bestow the most prayers upon me.”3
“The closest people to the station of prophet-hood are the scholars and the martyrs. The scholars guide others to that which the Messengers brought, and the martyrs sacrifice their lives for that which the Messengers brought.”4
The heart of anyone with good character is connected to the Messenger of Allah and this connection drives such a person to spend a portion of his time bestowing prayers upon the Messenger ﷺ. Likewise anyone that bestows abundant prayers upon him will receive a portion of that Prophetic character. Then through his character and connection, Prophetic knowledge will be clarified to him so that he sacrifices himself for the sake of the religion and busies himself conveying and clarifying the message that the Prophet brought.
1 Narrated by Ahmad, al-Tabarani, Ibn Hibban, who classified it as sahih
2 From a poem by Imam al-Haddad. This verse is inscribed on the wall of the enclosure in which lies the grave of the Messenger of Allah ﷺ
3 Narrated by al-Tirmidhi and Ibn Hibban
4 Narrated by Abu Nu`aym